Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Gif of the Day


Does this really happen in a lightbulb or is this a special explodey smokey lightbulb? I dunno but it's kinda cool.

Have We Always Had Concentration Camps?

I've noticed a new phase in the conservative defense of the migrant concentration camps recently emerged. They've gone through several stages, which I'm just going to bullet list right here:


  • They're not separating kids from parents
  • They are separating kids from parents but it's a good thing
  • The conditions of the prisons the kids are kept in are like summer camp
  • Conditions are bad but they're totally not concentration camps
  • Okay they are basically concentration camps but they're Obama's fault

Yeah. We're at that last point now.

I've seen an increasing number of conservative Twitter accounts blaming Obama for our current concentration camp situation in which we have fucking concentration camps. At the same time, I've seen people on the left pointing out that the conditions in the migrant detention centers that absolutely did increase in number under Obama were much the same when he was President. Someone who worked with migrant children at the time say the kids described a lack of supplies, being unable to shower, and children having to look after other children.

I'm going to admit to something horrible here. The idea that we've had concentration camps the whole time and maybe we only do care now because we hate Trump was weirdly comforting. It somehow made it all seem less horrifying and made it seem like Trump's being elected to the office of President actually has some kind of meaning and could even be a good thing overall.

I'm not proud of feeling any of that, but I'd rather we all be aware of our feelings and impulses around all this shit. I couldn't help feeling that way but I can recognize that it's fucked up and analyze why I feel that way.

However, the horrific overcrowding problem is new, and that problem is uniquely Trump. Donald Trump attacked the former policy that he called "catch and release" because we used to arrest people caught crossing the border in a way we consider to be "illegal," give them a court date, and let them go. A really good way to avoid prison overcrowding is to not keep a shit ton of people whose crime is "walking across an invisible line we decided on after we stole Texas from Mexico" in prison.

But Trump told everyone that these people would never show up for their court dates and would run amok in the U.S. tying up women and killing white babies because racist fearmongering is great for votes. So despite the fact that over 99% of the migrants "caught and released" under the old policy did show up for their court date, especially after the Obama administration implemented a program that helped undocumented migrants get better legal council, Trump declared that they all have to be held in detention until they can see an overworked immigration judge.

And now, surprise! We have horrible overcrowding.

So as usual, when you look at the details, Obama was not just as bad, but yes, conservatives, I WAS critical of Obama's immigration policies and was one of the many leftists calling him the deporter-in-chief before your favorite racist fuckbucket took over and made things a thousand times worse. And I didn't even get into Trump's family separation policy, which is definitely still happening even though they said they stopped.

But if and when we can shut down the concentration camps, we are going to need to contend with the fact that we treated detained migrants very badly all along. We're also going to have to consider what the fuck our prisons are, seeing as they're overcrowded, unsanitary, and refuse to supply inmates with basics like underwear, menstrual pads, or decent fucking food, and we're increasingly incarcerating children. And we've accepted this under the excuse that "they committed a crime," which is the same excuse conservatives are making about undocumented migrants.

So even if you consider overcrowding to be necessary for something to be a concentration camp, we've still pretty much had them for people like 18-year-olds caught with some weed and Black people who encountered a cop at some point. 

Abolish prisons.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Gif of the Day


Have I mentioned that I love black kitties?

I also love the cat in the background being like "what is happening right now."

See Me Live-Tweet Tonight's Democratic Debate

Now that Twitter has FUCKING FINALLY made it so you can be logged into two accounts at a time and switch easily back and forth between them, I'm going to try and be more active on my Not Sorry Feminism Twitter account, because I love this blog and it wouldn't hurt to show it. So anyway, I'll be live-tweeting my random fucking thoughts on there tonight while I watch the first installment of round two of progressive vs. centrist Democrats. They start at 8 pm EDT and 5 pm PDT.

Tonight features all white candidates (as I understand it, the lineup for each night is randomized but this does illustrate how few candidates of color we have). On the plus side, we'll get to see Liz and Bernie, arguably the two leftiest candidates, on the stage at the same time. Will they square off or will they team up against the likes of Tim Ryan? Tune in to find out.

I know it's not as interesting this time around and I didn't even know about this debate until like two days ago but it's still important. Try to stay awake.


This is the Funniest Thing That's Ever Happened

I know, I know, I'm really setting the bar high here. I'm also aware that I've probably made this claim before. But however funny those past things may have been, this is funnier. This is The Funniest Thing.


That is all 100% real. That is Papa Roach's official band Twitter account, it's got the blue check and everything, and they are quoting Trump's real Twitter account that he regularly uses to tweet his real thoughts and opinions on things. That is a direct embed. You can click on the date and it will take you to the real tweet, because this is real.

Pack it all up, people. This is the peak of humor. Papa fucking Roach made fun of its own song, which is the epitome of ridiculous and cringey faux-metal, in order to diss the President, Donald Trump. And yes, I counted the syllables, and while they don't match perfectly between Trump's quote and the actual lyrics of the song, it's pretty fucking close.

Frame this quote and hang it up in the Smithsonian. Put a protected copy of it in a vault and bury that vault so that future humans, or maybe even future sentient species who rose millions of years after the extinction of humanity, can look upon it and be so fucking confused.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Gif of the Day


I don't watch hockey but clearly I need to start. The guy's face popping up at the end out of nowhere looking like he just took a hockey puck directly to the dick when he's nowhere near the action is hands down the funniest thing I've ever seen in gif form, and as you know, I've seen a LOT of funny gifs.

2020 Challenger Lineup: Steve Bullock

I didn't do one of these last week partially because I just didn't get around to it and partially because there's only two left. I guess the window has probably closed for new candidates to join the party, so this series is almost done. Unfortunately, neither of the two candidates left are interesting.

Steve Bullock is the current Governor of Montana. Not good enough to be in the first debates but good enough to be on Wikipedia's list of candidates who have some outside chance of being nominated. I like that his last name is almost the British word for testicle. He went to law school, became a lawyer, then Executive Assistant Attorney General and acting Chief Deputy Attorney General of Montana, then Montana's Attorney General, then governor.

Bullock already has a PAC raising money for his campaign, getting its biggest donations from Ziff Brothers Investments. The Ziff Brothers are billionaires who inherited their wealth from their father.

Pretty much everybody reports on Bullock as being a moderate or centrist Democrat, with On The Issues calling him a "Moderate Libertarian Liberal."


He is pro-choice and worked to protect Montanans from the worst of Republican anti-choice fervor/posturing, he's fought to maintain/restore transparency in election donations, says he believes climate change is real and human-made but "Montana became the first state to halt preparations for the Clean Power Plan when the United States Supreme Court announced a stay of the plan in February 2016."

He has been good on immigration issues, including opposing a voter-approved piece of legislation that would have barred undocumented migrants from accessing any state services if it hadn't been struck down as unconstitutional. He also supported allowing Syrian refugees to be resettled in Montana and refused to send his National Guard troops to the border when Trump ordered it. He said he was "disgusted" by family separation policy and called this treatment of migrants "atrocities."

He's good on same-sex marriage and has issued an executive order prohibiting discrimination against LGBTQ+ government employees and contractors. He supports net neutrality and made Montana "the first state to implement and enforce net neutrality after the FCC repeal." He is a good supporter of unions and opposes so-called "right to work" laws.

The thing that sets him apart from most of the white male Democrats running for President? He supports the death penalty in the case of crimes like "terrorism."

His campaign website has exactly one position outlines, which is called "One Big Idea" and is centered on getting money out of politics. The idea that fixing the dark money and general "rich people can just buy elections and politicians" problem will fix all other problems is understandable, but I have serious doubts and I would like to know what he will do about shit like culturally-ingrained racism, sexism, and all other bigotries once money is out of our election process.

The thing that strikes me about Bullock is that he has the actions to back up his positions. That impresses me. But it's the only thing that impresses me. The fact that "This Guy Got Republicans to Vote for a Democrat," as is the headline for a New York Times opinion piece, does not impress me.

His is also not the voice of free college or canceling student debt. It is the voice of a Democrat who has shepherded several tuition freezes for residents at the state universities, thereby minimizing the need for loans in the first place. 

Oh boy, tuition freezes! So Montanans only have to pay the same amount of a lot of money just to go to college instead of increasingly more money. Exciting!

The bottom line is that Bullock is a centrist who would at best keep us where we are now. He may be genuine about his positions, which is nice, but it's not nearly enough to make up for wanting to maintain the status quo of bullshit in the vast majority of issues. If we really did have fair, representative elections that weren't influenced by money, he would never get elected.

D-.

All The Many Ways Ian Miles Cheong Is Wrong About Pansexuality

[TRIGGER WARNING: REFERENCES TO PEDOPHILIA, CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE, AND BEASTIALITY]

First of all, I really need to thank Ian Miles Cheong right now, because lately I've been having a bit of trouble finding the motivation to blog, but his load of absolute bullshit about pansexuality has given me such strong inspiration and motivation that I'm writing this up Friday evening even though this won't be posted until Monday because ho-ly shit he is full of it.

Even on Friday the 26th, this Twitter thread is two days old, but I don't care.




Ian, let me introduce you to Jeff Goldblum.


As your resident pansexual, I can tell you that the prefix "pan" does mean "all." However, just like with every other sexual orientation, that prefix applies to gender only. If our prefix applies to everything in the known universe, then so does your's, Ian.

So the prefix "hetero" means "other" or "different." Normal people know that, when added to "sexual," it means liking people of a different gender, typically the "opposite" gender in the male/female gender binary. Buuuuuuut if, as Ian seems to think, this applies to everything, that would mean that heterosexual people are only attracted to different genders, species, ages, races, hair colors, and states of matter. Can Ian explain why he is attracted to young or old female animals who exist in either a liquid or gaseous state? PRETTY FUCKED UP, IAN, YOU LIQUIFIED DONKEY FUCKER.

Next, let's talk about the term "bisexual." Because Ian is wrong about everything, I'm assuming be doesn't know or refuses to accept that the "bi" in "bisexual" means "two or more." In other words that contain the prefix "bi," it might simply mean "two." But in the English language, and many other languages, prefixes can change meaning depending on the rest of the word and what it actually means is generally decided by consensus. The definition of "two or more" for bisexual is decades old and has been agreed upon by the vast majority of the queer community. Therefore, Ian's suggestion that we pansexuals just "go back" to being bi (I was never bi, only pan) is completely useless, because that "more" encompasses everything, or "all." By Ian's definition, bisexuals are also pedos.

Ironically, the only sexualities who are not pedophiles are gay, lesbian, and ace. What a weird update to the bigoted idea that all gay men are pedophiles.

Now, considering the law of large numbers, there probably are child molesters and sexual predators who have claimed pansexuality as some sort of cover or excuse for their crimes. However, I am absolutely 100% sure that straight men make up the majority of both. I'm pretty sure Ian's straight, so why doesn't he just change his sexual orientation so he's not associated with so many pedos?


As for Ian's helpful Wikipedia screenshot, that definition clearly states that the prefix "pan" includes "'including all members' of a group." And all people not being a piece of shit troll fuck pretending to not understand the basics of his first language know that this group, in terms of sexual orientation, is "genders."

I don't know who Bella Thorne is or how she feels about her own, personal sexual identity. But, as a normal person, I would assume that when she said she's attracted to "beings," she meant human beings in an appropriate age range, just as we all assume that when straight dudes say they're attracted to "girls," they actually mean adult human women. Though maybe we shouldn't.

If Ian wants to attack pansexual people for some reason, he should just stick to the old "that's a made up identity that you use for attention" thing. It's still wrong but it takes less time to say and doesn't make you look like the biggest douchebag in the universe. Just a regular-level douchebag.

Friday, July 26, 2019

Gif of the Day


Accurate representation of my over-active startle response. Also really fucking cute.

Willem Van Spronsen’s Manifesto

CrimethInc has published a reaction to Willem Van Spronsen’s attempts to disable busses at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington and subsequent murder by police, along with his full manifesto which he posted before his sacrifice. I think it should be spread and read by as many people as possible. I find it moving, hopeful, and inspiring, and I intend to read it every time I feel dead tired from the fight.

Here is the full text:


There’s wrong and there’s right.
It’s time to take action against the forces of evil.

Evil says one life is worth less than another.
Evil says the flow of commerce is our purpose here.
Evil says concentration camps for folks deemed lesser are necessary.
The handmaid of evil says the concentration camps should be more humane.
Beware the centrist.

I have a father’s broken heart
I have a broken down body
And I have an unshakable abhorrence for injustice
That is what brings me here.
This is my clear opportunity to try to make a difference, I’d be an ingrate to be waiting for a more obvious invitation.

I follow three teachers:
Don Pritts, my spiritual guide. “Love without action is just a word.”
John Brown, my moral guide. “What is needed is action!”
Emma Goldman, my political guide. “If I can’t dance, I don’t want to be in your revolution.”

I’m a head in the clouds dreamer, I believe in love and redemption.
I believe we’re going to win.
I’m joyfully revolutionary. (We all should have been reading Emma Goldman in school instead of the jingo drivel we were fed, but I digress.) (We should all be looking at the photos of the YPG heroes should we falter and think our dreams are impossible, but I double digress. Fight me.)

In these days of fascist hooligans preying on vulnerable people in our streets, in the name of the state or supported and defended by the state,

In these days of highly profitable detention/concentration camps and a battle over the semantics,

In these days of hopelessness, empty pursuit and empty yearning,

We are living in visible fascism ascendant. (I say visible, because those paying attention watched it survive and thrive under the protection of the state for decades. [See Howard Zinn, A People’s History of the United States.] Now it unabashedly follows its agenda with open and full cooperation from the government. From governments around the world.

Fascism serves the needs of the state serves the needs of business and at your expense. Who benefits? Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffet, Elon Musk, Tim Cook, Bill Gates, Betsy de Vos, George Soros, Donald Trump, and need I go on? Let me say it again: rich guys (who think you’re not really all that good), really dig government (every government everywhere, including “communist” governments), because they make the rules that make rich guys richer.
Simple.
Don’t overthink it.

(Are you patriots in the back paying attention?)

When I was a boy, in post-war Holland, later France, my head was filled with stories of the rise of fascism in the ’30s. I promised myself that I would not be one of those who stands by as neighbors are torn from their homes and imprisoned for somehow being perceived as lesser.
You don’t have to burn the motherfucker down, but are you going to just stand by?

This is the test of our fundamental belief in real freedom and our responsibility to each other.
This is a call to patriots, too, to stand against this travesty against everything that you hold sacred. I know you. I know that in your hearts, you see the dishonor in these camps. It’s time for you, too, to stand up to the money pulling the strings of every goddamn puppet pretending to represent us.

I’m a man who loves you all and this spinning ball so much that I’m going to fulfill my childhood promise to myself to be noble.

Here it is, in these corporate for profit concentration camps.
Here it is, in Brown and non-conforming folks afraid to show their faces for fear of the police/migra/Proud Boys/the boss/beckies…
Here it is, a planet almost used up by the market’s greed.

I’m a black and white thinker.
Detention camps are an abomination.
I’m not standing by.
I really shouldn’t have to say any more than this.

I set aside my broken heart and I heal the only way I know how—by being useful.
I efficiently compartmentalize my pain…
And I joyfully go about this work.
(To those burdened with the wreckage from my actions, I hope that you will make the best use of that burden.)

To my comrades:
I regret that I will miss the rest of the revolution.
Thank you for the honor of having me in your midst.

Giving me space to be useful, to feel that I was fulfilling my ideals, has been the spiritual pinnacle of my life.

Doing what I can to help defend my precious and wondrous people is an experience too rich to describe.

My trans comrades have transformed me, solidifying my conviction that we will be guided to a dreamed-of future by those most marginalized among us today. I have dreamed it so clearly that I have no regret for not seeing how it turns out. Thank you for bringing me so far along.

I am antifa. I stand with comrades around the world who act from the love of life in every permutation. Comrades who understand that freedom means real freedom for all and a life worth living.

Keep the faith!
All power to the people!
Bella ciao.


Bella ciao, Willem. Rest in peace.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Gif of the Day


Cats eating pancakes is the best anti-depressant.

How To Protect Your Undocumented Neighbors From ICE

This incredible story is going around about a community that came together and leaped into action to save their undocumented neighbor from ICE arrest and possible deportation. It looks like it was originally posted by Tumblr user "keplercryptids," who lives in the city where this happened. I'm going to post the whole story here but keplercryptids is also a non-binary person with a ko-fi account you can donate to if you enjoy it!

i wanna share with y'all a great thing that happened in my city yesterday. early in the morning, ICE tried to kidnap an undocumented man while he was leaving for work with his son in the car. this man had no warrant and no criminal record, and had lived in his home with his family for the past 14 years. these ICE agents, un-uniformed and in unmarked cars, blockaded this man’s driveway, while he and his child sat locked in their van, for 4 hours. (obviously this isn’t the good part.) 
the man’s neighbors were the first to gather and confront ICE. phone calls were made, and dozens of local organizers, lawyers and activists showed up, in addition to more neighbors. they bought gas and siphoned it into the man’s car so he could keep the AC going. they passed water and food through the car windows. the city government was flooded with calls, and a few city council folks showed up in support of the man.
and ICE left. 
the man’s neighbors & the activists formed a human chain around the car so the man and his son could get back into their house. and later, his whole family was escorted to a safer location. 
today, that man is still with his family. his children, though undoubtedly shaken and scared (especially the son who was with him the whole time, and was so frightened he threw up at one point) still have their father. one of the neighbors said: “they picked the wrong neighborhood on the wrong day” and “I know they’ll be back, and so will we.”
I know a ton of posts get shared about doing this exact thing, but i want you to know that IT WORKS. community works. so please, above anything else, get to know your neighbors. keep an eye out for each other. don’t let people disappear. keep each other close, keep each other safe.

This is basically a blueprint for how we can all fight this nazi-like shit when it happens in our cities. If you're worried that it might happen near you but you won't hear about it, you can sign up for local alerts about ICE activity and put the numbers for these alert networks in your phone so you can alert them yourself if you see ICE getting into some evil shit. There are also apps that alert people of upcoming ICE raids.

Washington State has the Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network and their Deportation Defense Line. WAISN is a great all-around organization and I highly recommend looking through their Deportation Defense page, which includes multiple ways that anyone can help fight ICE and deportations. You can even sign up and get trained to be on their Rapid Response team, but anyone can show up for an undocumented neighbor to save them from being ripped away from their families. Do what you can. Fight for the oppressed.

Morning Feels Dump

I thought I would make this a morning announcement but it's really not an announcement so much as it is a sharing of feels. Part of what I'm feeling is that I shouldn't have to explain my absence yesterday, this is my blog and it's viewed daily on average less than 300 times, with maybe about 10 of those being real reads by real human beings, so really why am I even taking it so seriously, but also I'm not supposed to be sorry and I'm not saying I am-

This is what it's like in my brain all the time, by the way.

I was really depressed yesterday. A big part of that was feeling like I should be happy because honestly, my current money-making situation is pretty much one that I had been envisioning for years as a dream scenario that would just make my life wonderful. But yesterday I had a really strong feeling that I am just generally not happy. This led to a spiral that resulted in the conclusion that I have lost the ability to be happy or am at least losing the ability to feel joy. This is something I worry about sometimes, maybe even often. It's something I'm afraid of.

To some extent I have felt like my emotions have gradually become less intense. I don't know if this is an aging thing, maybe it is. I fear that it's a result of an awful tendency I have to repress my emotions without meaning to. It's something I did so often when I was a child/teen that it became like a reflex and I really don't know how to make it stop. All I'm able to attempt is to self-talk myself out of it, do some deep breathing and meditation. But I worry that I don't even notice I'm doing it and it's becoming worse over time. Is that weird?

Lately I have also gotten much more into smoking/ingesting cannabis, and the thing with that is it seems to intensify my emotions - both good and bad. If I get high enough, I can experience a kind of euphoria and I frequently, really constantly get a sense that there is another world/universe/dimension out there that is full of joy, and I can feel that happiness and contentment for a short time. Then it fades and sometimes - more often if I am getting high on a daily basis - this turns into a spiral where I feel like this world here is just so full of despair and awfulness, and I feel all of my struggling and the horrors of this world so intensely.

I'm not saying I even know what any of that means, but that's how I've been feeling.

Mostly, I fear that I'm reaching a point where I can only feel joy with drugs. Anhedonia, the inability to feel pleasure, is a real thing, often associated with depression, and it can be really difficult to treat. In past years, I've felt joy at the turning of the seasons. This spring, I felt that for maybe like an hour and then nothing. I don't seem to get much joy out of video games anymore, which is a real fucking bummer because even if that just means that I'm getting older and my tastes in recreation are changing, that's a huge part of my identity that I don't want to give up.

Is this that creeping depression that makes you lose interest in activities you once loved? If not, what does bring me joy? If it's depression, ugh, the whole idea of going back to therapy is a whole other thing that I really just don't want to deal with. But I know I probably should either way.

I'm 30 and I'm just so tired of struggling. I know happiness and contentment are possible because I felt that way through most of my time in college. But sometimes I wonder, even if fucking capitalism were abolished and we somehow implemented a system where everyone was just taken care of and I didn't have to work or worry, would I be able to be happy even then? Or would I keep avoiding my feelings by getting high and playing Sims 4 all day, even then?

Everything else just seems so hard. I'm tired.

I don't know that writing this down has made me feel any better, but maybe someone will be able to relate and feel a little better. Here's to you, random depressed stoner.

Monday, July 22, 2019

I'm About To Lose My Mind: Al Franken Edition

[TRIGGER WARNING: RAPE CULTURE, SEXUAL ASSAULT]

Al Franken is back in the fucking news again. Is it because he did something newsworthy? No! It's because some fucking liberal who writes for the New Yorker wrote a long thinkpiece claiming he was "railroaded" when he voluntarily decided to resign after a photo of him sexually assaulting a sleeping woman started circulating and seven other women came forward accusing him of sexual harassment and/or assault.

I haven't read the piece myself, because I don't think I'll be able to make it through the opening paragraph and just thinking about trying makes me want to cry.

Listen. This shit right here is more upsetting than yet another story of Donald Trump raping a woman. I'm not saying that what Al Franken did to Leeann Tweeden is worse than what Trump did to E. Jean Carroll, because it's not. But any woman who has ever had a male friend who turned out to be unsafe (or worse) will understand what I mean.

It's bad enough to have a fucking President who is a serial rapist and whose victims were sometimes underage, as young as 13. That's all horrible. Maybe the only reason I don't feel worse about it is because I can't even really allow it inside my head because if I did I would have a breakdown. All I know is how I feel, and this Al Franken shit is supremely upsetting. I and the rest of us shouldn't have to deal with liberals - people who claim to be on the side of women and survivors and everyone who is more likely than others to be sexually assaulted or raped - putting this much effort into upholding and contributing to rape culture.

It's a striking reminder that nobody is safe. Nothing is more horrifying than the reminder that your friends and family are the ones most likely to sexually assault you. Liberals go out of their way to remind me of this on a regular basis by doing shit like this, dragging up open-and-shut cases that should have been left in the grave as a reminder of how sexual assault allegations should be handled. Instead, they keep resurrecting the zombie that is this story to the point that now I have to know that Al Franken said he regrets resigning, making him just another sexual predator piece of shit and ruining the only thing that made this story not completely awful and triggering - the fact that Franken voluntarily resigned because he thought it was the right thing to do.

Thanks for that. Thanks for all of that. Thanks for ruining my day and the days of many survivors,  Jane Mayer and The New Yorker.

The Democrat who replaced Franken in the Senate is doing just fine, by the way. No harm done in that respect in spite of all the liberal handwringing that a Republican would replace him, which was never a serious possibility.

I don't understand why this piece needed to be written other than some assholes being like "do survivors feel bad enough right now? What can we do to make them feel completely unsafe in their everyday lives?"

Day successfully ruined, New Yorker liberals. Mission accomplished.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Gif of the Day


Ahhhhhh so pretty and hypnotic.

This is Some Heartless Bullshit

[TRIGGER WARNING: ANTI-MIGRANT RACISM, ANTI-LATINE RACISM, CONCENTRATION CAMPS]

Okay back to your regularly scheduled awful. The Trump administration is making it so refugees can't come here to apply for asylum. Instead, they have to apply at the first "safe" country they enter and then wait for approval, which I'm assuming would take years, and also when and where and how will they appear in front of a judge to argue their case? Does that not happen? This is all just fucked.

Trump Administration Implementing '3rd Country' Rule On Migrants Seeking Asylum

The Trump administration is moving forward with a tough new asylum rule in its campaign to slow the flow of Central American migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Asylum-seeking immigrants who pass through a third country en route to the U.S. must first apply for refugee status in that country rather than at the U.S. border.

So, that "third country" is going to be Mexico for all the people fleeing Guatemala. Mexico is not considered to be a safe country by like, anybody, least of all the Trump administration or Trump supporters who call all Mexican men rapists and imply that Mexico is where all the drugs are coming. And sure, a lot of drugs do pass though Mexico via various and very violent drug cartels, which is why it's not considered a safe place to stay. Also, Mexico is where that horrific video of the woman pleading for help through a hole in a migrant prison camp while other prisoners rioted because they were starving and didn't have clean water came from.

But, and I can't stress this enough, Mexico's drug problem is largely a result of the U.S. bullshit "war on drugs." Same for Central America.

Anyway, that's just Guatemalan refugees. Those coming from El Salvador and Honduras? Will have to stay in Guatemala. Where many of the other asylum seekers are coming from because OBVIOUSLY IT'S NOT FUCKING SAFE. But the Trump administration is trying to magically say Guatemala is a safe country for the sake of this heartless policy that is just a giant "fuck you" to asylum seekers which the U.S. created.

This would be unlikely to slow the rate of asylum seekers coming to the U.S. because even if they hear about the new policy, they're not going to care. It's about getting to a safe place for them and their families and the U.S. has spent the past couple hundred years claiming to be the best country on the planet soooooo....

All it will do is officially criminalize all asylum seekers who make it here. They'll be able to throw them all in concentration camps indefinitely and won't have to deal with the rest of us constantly screaming SEEKING ASYLUM IS NOT A CRIME.

The policy will be challenged in court, but who the fuck knows what will happen anymore in this country? And even if it gets struck down, this is still such a massive dick move. The Trump Administration is completely devoid of humanity and I wish we could deport them all to the sun.

How the fuck are you going to accuse people who walk across the entirety of Mexico of abusing the system? Fuck off and die.

Some Heartwarming Stuff Because We Need It

It's been a little rough writing and reading about so much awful stuff every day as Lord Dampnut sounds more and more like the KKK/fucking Hitler while stadiums full of his supporters cheer him on. It's also been rough because I'm really trying to open myself up and let myself feel stuff instead of suppressing every emotion to cope. So I'm going to try and post some more positive stuff, and also it might help you feel better.

Firstly, this video of Ilhan Omar's supporters welcoming her home to Minnesota at the airport is really about to make me cry.


They're actually chanting "welcome home, Omar" in the most heartwarming defiance of a wannabe dictator fascist who told her to go back to where she came from. Because the U.S. and Minnesota are her home. She belongs here and I love her.

Then there's this ad for a Dublin-based bus company or Dublin's public transportation department or whatever showing young LGBTQ+ people inviting their senior counterparts to Pride because they had never been before. I was actually asked to write an article about this for a site you might want to bookmark called Tank's Good News. I don't know who Tank is but the website is just heartwarming stories.

Video Of Young People Inviting LGBT+ Seniors To Their First Pride Has Everyone Crying

You don't really need to read the article, just watch the video.


There are so many good people in the world. Evil people tend to hoard all the money and power so they're hard to fight, but no matter what it's a comfort to know that there are so many good people out there who are full of love and acceptance instead of judgment and hate.

What's also making me tear up is this quote from the Talmud, attributed to Rabbi Tarfon:

“Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief. Do justly, now. Love mercy, now. Walk humbly now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.”

Thanks, man, I'll try.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Gif of the Day


No idea what this is from or why this man has mismatched shoes, but it's somehow compelling.

Don't Shop At Goodwill

[TRIGGER WARNING: RANK ABLEISM]

Goodwill has already been on my shit list for paying its disabled workers less than minimum wage with the excuse of "it's either that or nothing" which is what they used to say about all workers before they fought and died for minimum wage jobs, but now they're actively and openly discriminating against disabled workers by saying that they will stop paying them entirely in the face of minimum wage increases.

Goodwill pulls paychecks from disabled workers

Sharon Durbin, President and Chief Executive Officer at Land of Lincoln Goodwill, told dozens of disabled thrift store workers they would no longer receive a paycheck as a result of the state’s new minimum wage increase, and she warns future job cuts could still be coming to the last 11 remaining disabled employees still on the payroll.

Welcome to another installment of "uhhhhhhmmmmm I thought you couldn't do that?"

I don't think non-profits are exempt from anti-discrimination laws, especially ones as big as Goodwill. But apparently they are when it comes to disability, because ableism is that bad.

Also, Goodwill should not be allowed to be a non-profit because they actually make a lot of profit and don't really help anybody.

Also, you currently only employ 11 disabled employees? Out of 450 total employees? Then that makes you a big ol' liar, doesn't it?

The loud speaker broadcasts a message that reminds shoppers, “At Goodwill, every item you buy, and every item you donate funds job training and so much more.” Literature hanging in the lobby announces that “we train and support over 1,000 people with developmental disabilities.”

Better take that shit down if you're gonna employ zero.

So what it sounds like is that they're not going to fire the disabled employees, they'll just make them work for free under the excuse/lie that they're giving them "job training." Bullshit. What you're doing is going from underpaying them to making them little more than slaves. And I don't want to hear thing one about minimum wage increases when you don't even pay all of your workers minimum wage and when all the evidence shows that minimum wage increases increase profits to businesses, especially ones that serve the people who get minimum wage like Goodwill because those people are able to buy more things.

But regardless, this is rank ableism, right out in the open. This is treating disabled people as less than people. This is pretending that disabled people don't need money to live like everyone else, or don't deserve to live because of their disability. And government disability payments are not enough for anyone to live on, which is why, as the article points out, many of them have to live in "group homes."

Fuck Goodwill all the way to the bank. If they won't pay their workers, I won't shop there ever again, and neither should you. Go to real thrift shops that actually use the money they receive to help people. Don't support ableism.

Recommended Reading

Remember when the "alt-right" first became a thing and I declared I was going to look through their online forums and shit every weekday to keep track of what they were up to? That fell right on its face because, as it turns out, my ability to look into the void is limited. But some people have spent years doing just this, and one individual in particular, Gwen Snyder, has been creating an amazing Twitter thread series explaining everything that every average person needs to know about modern white supremacist and neo-nazi symbology, language, subgroups, and culture.

Of course, there are many trigger warnings to be aware of before you dive in, including racial and ethnic slurs, violence and murder, and general nazi shit.


Snyder posted part three of this thread series yesterday, and it continues to be incredible. Though I am more familiar than the average person with all this bizarre and ever-changing nazi shit, I have still learned things from this thread that will make me better able to spot the enemy. Everything I already knew has been accurate, so I stand by the series. It's a fascinating, entertaining, and pretty easy read, and I highly recommend it if you want to avoid and protect yourself against the world's worst human beings.

Gwen Snyder is an artist and a "West Philly SJW researching radical white supremacy." She is also a perfect human being doing the work of god and my hero. If you're still not intrigued, the information you will learn involved frogs in rainbow clown wigs, Minecraft, and virgins chugging milk.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Gif of the Day


Don't worry, there wasn't actually an explosion. There's just a blog out there that adds explosions to gifs.

17-Year-Old Girl Murdered By Gamer Boyfriend

[TRIGGER WARNING: STABBING, MURDER, MEN'S VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN, SUICIDE, ONLINE HARASSMENT]

With all the other shit going on, this is another story to get buried, but this particular story (among many) of men murdering their female significant others is particularly gruesome and outlines the problem of intense misogyny among male gamers. Not only because the murderer is a gamer, but because of how the rest of the male gamer community responded to the news of her death.

People are flooding Instagram with pink clouds to drown out grisly images of slain teen

Two days after the brutal murder of an upstate New York teenager, Instagram is still having trouble scrubbing its platform of gruesome images and offensive memes related to the incident. 
Bianca Devins, a 17-year-old from Utica, New York, with a large following on Instagram, was killed on Sunday morning, her throat allegedly slit by Brandon Clark, a 21-year-old she knew, according to local police. Clark allegedly uploaded photos of her bloodied body online before attempting suicide—images that quickly spread across social media sites on Sunday and Monday, leaving companies like Twitter and Facebook-owned Instagram scrambling to remove the content.

All of this is depressingly predictable, including the fact that the murderer is an adult four years older than the child he was dating and then murdered.

The murderer has been charged with second-degree murder, I'm assuming because this will be considered a crime of passion and not premeditated. Police have said that the pair were arguing before he murdered Devins, then tried to kill himself when they arrived because he was posting photos of her dead body on Discord.

I enjoy video games and have for the vast majority of my life but if it were in my power, I would destroy and outlaw all video games in existence and that might be created in the future just to punish men like this - both the ones who murder women and the ones who think this shit is somehow funny and post photos of dead bodies to upset people while the family is still stricken with grief and trying to figure out how to go on. 

Monday, July 15, 2019

Gif of the Day


RIP, Willem.

Antifascist Man Killed By Police While Trying To Burn Deportation Buses

[TRIGGER WARNING: POSSIBLE SUICIDE]

So this happened at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, less than an hour from where I live and a place I have personally protested for its shitty conditions and detainment of refugees. A local self-identified anarchist and antifascist posted a manifesto online before trying to light the buses that NWDC uses to deport its migrant prisoners on fire using "incendiary devices" (flares). The police were called and they, of course, shot him to death.

NWDC representatives have been freaking the fuck out, claiming this guy could have/would have hurt employees, claiming he attacked the main building which is absurd because it's concrete and he was trying to light shit on fire.

The man's name was Willem Van Spronsen. Based on some of what was in his manifesto, it sounds like he intended to either be arrested or, more likely, be killed by police. He was 69 and said shit like "to those burdened with the wreckage from my actions, I hope that you will make the best use of that burden" and "I regret that I will miss the rest of the revolution."

I've talked before about the phenomenon of "suicide by cop," a real thing that happens when your nation's police are so known for their murderousness that a great way to end your own life is to provoke them. I can't say for certain if that was Willem's intention, but I can say for certain that I myself have envisioned myself committing suicide in exactly this fashion - by attacking a migrant concentration camp and then the police when they show up. And I'm certain that I'm not the only one who has.

Willem's sacrifice and bravery made a deep statement about where we are as a nation. We've officially seen someone attack a concentration camp and be killed for it and it may well have been an act of suicide. I'm of course not going to encourage it but it would be mighty silly of me to think it's not going to happen again, and I understand. The horror of living in the U.S. right now when you're a moral person is so intense.

A lot else is going on right now in the country, most of it Trump being just astonishingly racist and Islamophobic, but this happened Saturday morning and I didn't hear about it until last night. I wouldn't be surprised if this news is being squashed because of all the people who don't want this to happen. And hey, it doesn't have to be just one person at a time, and it doesn't have to be a suicide mission. With enough of us, we could do a lot more damage and most of us would survive.

That's what they're afraid of.

Meanwhile, over on Fox News and even less blatantly right-wing news outlets, they're reporting on Willem like they should have reported on all those white supremacists who post manifestos before going out and committing deadly mass shootings. They can't be bothered to report on any of those cases but a guy attacks some buses and hurts nobody and all the sudden "ANTIFA ANARCHIST POSTS MANIFESTO, MARTYRED BY COMRADES BEFORE ASSAULTING OBJECTS." The parallels between the Fox News report on this and the way actual news outlets report on white supremacist mass shooters are striking and bitterly hilarious.

Willem Van Spronsen was murdered by police who could have de-escalated (they're supposed to be getting training on this but big surprise it didn't do shit) but surely wanted him dead because of what he was attacking (white supremacy and fascism) and because he once body-slammed a cop who was trying to arrest another antifa activist (double hero). He died trying to do something real to end the horror of concentration camps. He died trying to prevent deportations that tear families apart and get people killed. He died for human rights and human dignity, rather than dying for the sake of white supremacy.

If he were a character in a movie or a book, everyone would consider him a hero. But somehow people can't draw a line from the fiction they consume to the real world that all that fiction is based on. Probably because they don't want to feel bad about the fact that they'll never be heroes like Willem because they're too scared and too comfortable in their capitalist luxury.

But as fewer and fewer of us get any capitalist luxury and instead have to live paycheck to paycheck to live in shit, this is going to keep happening. Willem isn't the first in human history and he certainly will not be the last.

2020 Challenger Lineup: Michael Bennet

Is anyone else distracted by how small Bennet's mouth is? I know there's a joke about white people being lipless but come on man.

With that out of the way, Bennet was at least able to get into the debates, though due to the fact that I hadn't profiled yet, even I could not remember his name. Like every time I learned it, his name just seemed to fall out of my head. We'll see if it sticks now.

Bennet has some interesting origins. He was born in India because his dad was the aid to the U.S. ambassador in New Delhi. His mother is a Holocaust survivor, making Bennet culturally Jewish. But in general he was still a pretty standard privileged white boy who's now running for president.

He began his career on the U.S. Senate by appointment via the Colorado governor after the seat was vacated. He's held the seat through two elections since then, with support from Obama and Hickenlooper.

Bennet is an original co-sponsor of the Equality Act to explicitly guarantee protections for LGBTQ+ people. He does not support Medicare for All, but a watered-down "incremental" version that would probably never reach anything close to real universal healthcare. On immigration, he was one of the original supporters of the DREAM Act, and since then has signed a number of letters politely asking Trump to stop the country's plummet toward yet another concentration camp situation and maybe please don't stop sending financial aid to Central America, pretty please?

He's a supporter of tax credit to halt our other plummet toward the climate apocalypse and voted in support of the Keystone XL pipeline - one of only a handful of Democrats to do so. He also signed another letter asking Trump's EPA pick to say that maybe repealing the Clean Power Plan was bad actually. He does have a decently aggressive plan to combat climate change but at this point I'm not concerned it's enough.

But he supports the legalization of weed so yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh just kidding fuck this guy.

His campaign website also has a plan for reducing government corruption but he basically seems like Joe Biden without the name recognition and probably less creepy toward women, maybe, I don't really know, so I don't believe him. This is not the white Jewish man worth voting for.

D-. There's some actual progressive positions pulling him out of the F range but I get the distinct feeling he's a neoliberal in most respects.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Gif of the Day


Speaking of soccer, this is some amazing teamwork. Also I've done that with a squirty water bottle before.

I Got My "My Good Bitch" Moment, Look At It

[TRIGGER WARNING: MISOGYNISTIC SLURS, MISOGYNY]

So this happened on Twitter and it's funny and it only got one like so I'm sharing it here because I love it.

It originated with my response to this amazing video of drag queens using their hand fans to drown out a far-right media host who came to Pride to be a complete fucking asshole, as they do.


Then this rando who claims to be a "life-long liberal" but is probably a bot or a sock puppet account made by some alt-right fuckoff because all the account does is going around being a dick to people, including calling people "snowflake" and "puss" for daring to say that the U.S. women's soccer team, which both plays way better than AND brings in more attention and revenue than the U.S. men's team, should be paid as much as the men's team instead of a small fraction of what the men are paid, responded with this shit:


And honestly, could the setup be any better?




It's my blog and I can post what I want.

If you're not aware, the "my good bitch" thing is in reference to this treasure:


Normally I don't like to see the word "bitch" thrown around because it's a deeply misogynistic slur but that is too good. Chef's kiss good.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Gif of the Day


Cats high fiving/fist bumping literally never gets old.

On Human Isolation, Disconnection, and Loneliness

As a human being and something of an existential depression sufferer lately, I've done a lot of thinking about what the root of human misery and evil is and whether we can ever actually stop being terrible to one another. There are mutliple potential answers, and none of them are just "social media," but one thing I have been thinking about lately is the nature of loneliness, disconnection, and isolation.

If you're at all young and on social media connected to a lot of young people, you'll find that a common theme among us is loneliness and isolation. It's often disguised or lightened by jokes, but there are plenty of raw, genuine posts on Tumblr especially about wanting to make friends but feeling unable to connect with people or hampered by social anxiety. I recently came to a realization about my own feelings of loneliness and being unable to form connections with others, and now I'm on to wondering why this happened to so many of us and what we can do about it.

What does it take to feel really connected to another person? Sometimes I feel like I'd like to find a willing stranger so we could just pour our deepest feelings, fears, and secrets out to each other. I'm so tired of worrying that I'm bothering someone or "oversharing," but I can't seem to shake the feeling of social awkwardness no matter what I tell myself or how many times.

What caused this in me, specifically? I know as an unplanned child born five and a half years after my closest sibling, in a family that is not great with emotions, I often felt alone and isolated. I did make friends as any child, but as I grew very few of my friendships evolved beyond surface-level. We didn't really talk about our emotions or our families problems or anything like that. When I was hit with depression and anxiety in middle school, plus an unexplained and intense revulsion to anything sexual, I again felt isolated and alone.

People often point to social media as what must be causing the spiking rates of mental illness and suicide, but I wonder if social media wasn't naturally attractive to generations of young people already afflicted with disconnection and emotional isolation. We looked to social media for connection and understanding and validation and we did find some there, but maybe it's not enough. Maybe it's only a bandaid on a deep wound, a tiny bit of relief that we keep coming back for but that doesn't solve the problem, and maybe even makes it worse.

Don't get me wrong, there are many wonderful things about social media and the internet in general. But there are plenty of people who have expressed feeling like social media has made them feel more isolated, not less, and made them feel worse in other ways.

But I still don't think social media is the root cause. I'm old enough to remember life before social media even existed, and I felt isolated, lonely, disconnected, and unhappy before Myspace was invented. Now, maybe other people didn't. But I've heard theories about how the rise of the nuclear family model, everyone in their own little worlds in their own little houses, put us on a path to increasing disconnection from one another. Community involvement is not what it used to be. Fewer and fewer of us even know the names of our neighbors.

I sure don't.

One thing I do know is that humans are social animals who aren't meant to live in isolation. We're not even supposed to live in small family units like we do now, but in larger groups. I suspect that the American obsession with independence to the point that isolation is considered a better option than the weird shame we put on living with your parents is a disease that has eaten away at our collective mental health and maybe our souls if you believe in that kind of thing for many generations. Maybe that's why the U.S. is so uniquely fucked up. But at the same time, we're not the only ones feeling isolated and disconnected.

I'd actually love to see a breakdown of these sentiments by country via worldwide survey or something.

Anyway, so what do we do about it? I went through a period of isolation recently where I stopped trying to regularly get out and see friends and family, and it definitely had a negative impact on my mental health. But it's a constant struggle because somehow, even seeing people I've known for nearly my entire life is stressful, and every time there is a part of me that wants to stay home alone. I don't know why I want that so much if it's so bad for me. I want to break free of the useless social awkwardness and anxiety but I don't know how. Trying to gradually up my number of social outings is a difficult and slow process that seems to keep suffering from setbacks.

Maybe I need to try group therapy or something. Maybe I need to just start a support group for Millennials who feel disconnected and/or are terrified about the future possible collapse of society and extinction of the human species. Or organize some kind of space where I can sit with people and just lay it all out, including my social anxieties, and be like "fuck worrying about oversharing, fucking worrying about being overdramatic, this is how I feel, please tell me exactly how you feel without holding back."

And speaking of being dramatic, sometimes I want to physically reach into the minds and souls of others and just feel them and have them feel me. I want to feel the kind of deep connection I feel like I'm lacking and fear that I'm incapable of making somehow. Did I fail to learn that as a child and now I can't learn it as an adult, like certain sounds in some human languages?

Part of the reason I'm writing about this today is that my partner put on a random TED Talk about this very subject and the speaker named the degradation of human connections as the main reason for rising depression and suicide rates, and I think he might be right. It might be the root of a lot of our problems. I'm tired of feeling lonely and I'm tired of being afraid to say what I really feel. I'm tired of worrying that people will think I'm embarrassing or whatever other middle school crap.

I wanna get people.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Gif of the Day


This is apparently a group of nuns praying for the soul of a punk kid, who is being a very good sport about it.

Donald Trump Raped E. Jean Carroll

I was deep in my insistence of covering concentration camps and only concentration camps when this news broke, and also I had to write about it for work and then never wanted to think about it again, even when I saw other feminists being like "hahaha no one is even bothering to cover this, no one cares that the president is a serial rapist holy shit end me."

It's just so hard. Honestly, I get it. I get why people didn't want to talk about this. Because I didn't. I mean, this shit is always at least mildly triggering for me, but when it comes to Trump and other powerful white men, I can't tell you how depressing it is to get angry about them raping women and girls, demanding justice, shouting down the inevitable flood of rape apologists, and then watching it fade from public consciousness as absolutely nothing is done by lawmakers or authorities and those men get to keep on being president because we let a guy who has spent his whole life going around saying "screw the rules I have money" become president.

Yes, that is a Yu-Gi-Oh the Abridged Series reference. I do what I need to do to get by.

But in spite of all the mental resistance, I really do want to report on this. I had to read E. Jean Carroll's graphic account of what was absolutely a case of rape by any legal definition, and if you are able to do so, you should, too. Donald Trump has also been accused of rape or sexual assault by 15 other women/girls and of anything under the term "sexual misconduct" by at least 22 women/girls. Don't forget that Trump is not only a rapist, but a child rapist.

I'm glad that Jeffrey Epstein was FINALLY arrested for being a child rapist and collector of child porn, but it took far too long. As long as Trump is president, he's apparently immune from any consequences, but maybe someday if he ever allows himself to leave office, he'll be arrested for being a child rapist, too. But it's absolutely devastating to every survivor in the world to watch these arrests get delayed for years and years and years while the men are free to live their lives, make way too much money, enjoy the world's greatest decadence, and in some cases, run the free world (lol free) and also don't forget continue to assault women and girls because sexual predators don't stop.

So if you ever think about asking a woman "what's wrong" you can just go ahead and assume it's that. The President of the United States, Donald Trump, is a rapist. And people send me asinine emails yelling at me for hating this country.

Black Kid Who Licked Ice Cream Faced More Prison Time That 99% of Rapists

Hahahahahahahahahaha I'm fucking losing my fuck-ass mind oh my god.

Before the suspect was identified as a juvenile, police said she could have faced up to 20 years in prison. They had planned on arresting her on a charge of second-degree felony tampering.

 

So a Black teen went into a store, licked some ice cream and put it back in the freezer on video for Instagram fame because she is a teenager. Cops identified her in a matter of days and apparent, had she been arrested as an adult, she could have faced two to 20 years in prison. For a fucking Instagram prank in which she licked some ice cream and put it back in a store.

No, it wasn't a good idea, she could have gotten somebody sick, and none of us want this to catch on as a trend because we'll never trust ice cream again, but this is fucking ridiculous. Two to 20 years? For LICKING ICE CREAM?

Meanwhile, story after story of men getting away with rape goes by without anybody really caring, including, by the way, our fucking President.

This is anti-black racism and hyper-criminalization of blackness crashing headlong into rape culture and I can't handle it. Next we're gonna have white supremacists attacking Black people in the ice cream aisle.

Let Black children be children. Arrest and prosecute rapists rather than tricking down teen pranksters who were unlikely to hurt anyone, even if the prank was ill-advised. FIX YOUR FUCKING PRIORITIES OR I WILL PERSONALLY LICK EVERY DONUT IN YOUR FAVORITE BAKERIES, COPS.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Gif of the Day


THE HORRORawwwwwwww!

2020 Challenger Lineup: Joe Biden



No really, that's the whole thing. F -, Joe.

I'm actually close to running out of candidates to profile! A couple more might pop up, but not too many after we've already had the first debate, I would think.

Thankfully, I have two friends who went ahead and helped me with this without me even asking because they're amazing, so once I have no one left to profile, I'm going to work on a whole fuckin' spreadsheet outlining positions on the top issues and giving ratings based on where they are on a political spectrum. Maybe two, one for the U.S. and one for the rest of the world. Should be cool.

Then we can all probably just caucus for Elizabeth Warren. Or whoever you like. I dunno. I'll continue to update things after each debate. Hope we make it to Election Day.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Gif of the Day


This movie was the funniest thing that ever happened and you cannot change my mind.

Don't Pay Off Other People's Debts After They Die

Now that everyone else is freaking out over the concentration camps, and I'm hoping that's not just gonna die down and become nothing again, but for now I think I really need to focus on other things for this blog before I send myself right off the edge.

So here's something good I can do that might actually help someone. I can spread some helpful advice that is essentially that if any company or bank or whatever calls you up and tries to get you to pay off the debt of a family member who has died, tell them to go fuck themselves.

This post appeared on Facebook way back in 2010 but for some reason was screenshotted and is being spread on Tumblr. Here's the text version:

Be sure and cancel your credit cards before you die.
This is so priceless, and so, so easy to see happening, customer service being what it is today.  
A lady died this past January, and Citibank billed her for February and March for their annual service charges on her credit card, and added late fees and interest on the monthly charge. The balance had been $0.00 when she died, but now somewhere around $60.00. A family member placed a call to Citibank.  
Here is the exchange :  
Family Member: 'I am calling to tell you she died back in January.'
Citibank: 'The account was never closed and the late fees and charges still apply.'
Family Member: 'Maybe, you should turn it over to collections.'
Citibank: 'Since it is two months past due, it already has been'
Family Member: So, what will they do when they find out she is dead?'
Citibank: 'Either report her account to frauds division or report her to the credit bureau, maybe both!'
Family Member: 'Do you think God will be mad at her?'
Citibank: 'Excuse me?'
Family Member: 'Did you just get what I was telling you - the part about her being dead?'
Citibank: 'Sir, you'll have to speak to my supervisor.'

Supervisor gets on the phone:
Family Member: 'I'm calling to tell you, she died back in January with a $0 balance.'
Citibank: 'The account was never closed and late fees and charges still apply.'
Family Member: 'You mean you want to collect from her estate?'
Citibank: (Stammer) 'Are you her lawyer?'
Family Member: 'No, I'm her great nephew.' (Lawyer info was given)
Citibank: 'Could you fax us a certificate of death?'
Family Member: 'Sure.' (Fax number was given )

After they get the fax :
Citibank: 'Our system just isn't setup for death. I don't know what more I can do to help.'
Family Member: 'Well, if you figure it out, great! If not, you could just keep billing her. She won't care.'
Citibank: 'Well, the late fees and charges will still apply.'
(What is wrong with these people?!?)
Family Member: 'Would you like her new billing address?' Citibank: 'That might help..'
Family Member: 'Odessa Memorial Cemetery, Highway 129, Plot Number 69.'
Citibank: 'Sir, that's a cemetery!'
Family Member: 'And what do you do with dead people on your planet???'  
Priceless!!

This has been followed by other, similar stories on Tumblr along with the very handy advice that it's illegal for any company to try and collect on debts from people the debt doesn't belong to. If you didn't co-sign for it, it's not your problem. If you ever do get a call like this, I recommend letting the poor sap who has to work as a debt collector for some big company that you have a message for the company itself and/or its CEO/upper management, and then unleash all the grief and anger you have from having a death in the family on them.

Because fuck capitalists.

Portland Police Spread Lie About Cement In Milkshakes

Today in things I shouldn't be surprised about but somehow still am. I knew media outlets were picking up the cement milkshake bullshit and recklessly spreading the idea without mentioning that there is absolutely no proof and nobody has come forward to say they were hurt by coming into contact with one of these milkshakes, but it is on a whole new level when the cops do it.


It's still up in spite of the fucking Snopes article calling the whole thing false. I mean I really shouldn't be surprised but for whatever reason, it continues to shock me just how utterly and blatantly the Portland police are on the side of the fascists and white supremacists in the area. These groups can make up any lie they can think of no matter how outrageous or absurd and the cops will just repeat it, sending it out into the world via social media.

Can you guess what happened next?

Portland milkshake makers face death threats after police tweets


Fuck. The. Police.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Gif of the Day


I'm guessing this is some kind of virtual reality thing, but it's hilarious.

Let's Talk About Our Feelings

[TRIGGER WARNING: EXTREME PESSIMISM, CONCENTRATION CAMPS, SUICIDE MENTION]

Okay so, during the past couple years, the trajectory of the U.S. has appeared to take a complete nosedive, like nearly 90 degree angle if it were a line graph, holy fuck direction, you know? And I've been spending the last, um, well it's either been several days or 5,000 years, it's hard to say, anyway I've been writing about concentration camps that exist inside of this country for both paid work and on this blog and also on Tumblr and Twitter and sharing shit about it daily on Facebook because every day there's new horrible news about fucking concentration camps, and at the same time other horrible shit is going on like Trump is having a military parade with fucking tanks and everything oh and the other day he joked with Putin about how they should "get rid" of journalists and here I am being something of a journalist and also vehemently critical of Trump, also June was the hottest month on record, whee!

And that's just some of what's been happening since I read that climate report that was signed off on by a former fucking oil tycoon so you know that's some serious shit and also it said that it's very likely that due to climate catastrophe society will start to collapse by 2050, which pushed me over the edge to believing on an emotional level that there is actually a good chance that humanity has no future.

I spent some time trying to deal with the climate change thing but I think it's safe to say I have not fully dealt with my emotions around that, let alone all this concentration camp shit. I'm not the best at facing my emotions and processing them in a healthy way. I'd rather ignore them and hope they just fuck off. That never works, by the way.

So let's talk feelings. I mean, I'm going to talk about my feelings here and you can absolutely feel free to do so in the comments and in fact I encourage you to do so even though very few people will read this but whatever.

On Monday I had to write two articles about the concentration camps, one being that horrific Facebook page for border patrol agents that exposed me to a particularly triggering image and then just an overall piece about what we've learned from all the Democrats who visited the camps over the weekend.

After my work was finished, I got up from the couch, went to sit on a nearby chair, and started sobbing. Don't feel bad for me, crying is good. In fact, I didn't cry for nearly long enough. I still have so much emotion inside me but I have a hard time with crying and processing and blah blah blah. The truth is it feels like I could cry for about a year straight if I had like an IV in me at all times pumping water and sodium back into my body.

But on top of all of that, every time I think that I should do something to make sure I do process these emotions, such as therapy, or exercise, or just sitting with my emotions without distractions for a few minutes every day, I can't help but have the thought that why should I bother if everything is just gonna go to shit? I don't wonder if I should bother continuing to write on this for work or otherwise because I just have to. But aside from my work and blogging, I spend a lot of time with a lot of distractions going at once, and I've been spending a lot of time high. And I fear these coping mechanisms won't last.

But it's been so hard to get motivated to do what I know I should to keep myself reasonably healthy. It's hard enough to even write this out because on top of all of all that, I still have this ridiculous fear of people knowing that I'm feeling bad, even though it seems like my entire blog would make that pretty clear. There's all this shame and worrying that people will worry about me. It's utterly absurd right now but there it is.

Sometimes the sheer scope of human suffering is overwhelming. I used to live my life with the hope that someday, we would figure out how to stop hurting each other and create a world where justice actually prevails and the world wouldn't be run by people whose goal in life is to add ever more to their massive pile of riches and power. Who seem to live and thrive on human suffering. I figured my efforts meant something even if I would never live to see anything close to social justice because I was helping to lay the groundwork for future generations.

Now I feel like there may not be future generations at all. So what are my efforts for? I still feel as though I couldn't stop if I wanted to, but there's a grief in feeling like it could all be for nothing, that the future I'd imagined could happen has been ripped away.

So often these days I think back to just a few years ago, when I could never have imagined that we could have concentration camps on U.S. soil in my lifetime. Sure, we'd had them before, but we've learned our lesson, right?

Now I realize that, well, we've had prisons that are Like That this whole time. Plus Native American reservations are pockets of intense poverty thanks to our government. But that certainly doesn't make me feel better. Maybe it's absurd for me to freak out over these concentration camps when we basically have them for other people we deem criminals. We still basically have slavery. School desegregation never happened, did you know that?

Did things really ever get better? Do things get better? Can things get better? Or is it all the same shit in a new package?

I just want to take a moment to assure any readers that I am not considering suicide.

I want to be honest with my feelings. I think that might be the only way to get through this without either collapsing under the stress or becoming the kind of cold, callous person I never want to be. Sometimes I can kind of understand why people are conservative. It's so hard to give a fuck about other people and not just blame them for all their own suffering no matter what. How much easier must life be when you've convinced yourself that all those who are suffering, from the homeless to the people imprisoned in hell holes for drug possession or seeking asylum to the people starving to death in Yemen somehow deserve it?

But I also hate them, because they're complicit in all that suffering. We could end so much suffering if we just did what is hard. If so many of us didn't take the easy route. Isn't it funny that people assume I must be lazy because I'm fat when here I am, looking at the horrible, painful, ugly parts of humanity and feeling my feelings and trying to do something, anything about it?

I want to cry and I don't want to cry. I want to cry but I can't. Or I can a little but not nearly as much as I know I need to.

So that's some of how I'm feeling lately! I dunno. Maybe somehow we'll save ourselves from climate change. Maybe future generations will look back on my work and be like "man she was emo sometimes but she gave us some good ideas and helped chronicle the shit show that was the early 21st century." Maybe I am just being an overdramatic SJW Millennial or whatever. I sure hope so.

But then again, we do definitely have concentration camps, and disgusting, abusive, overcrowded prisons, and massive racial injustice, and all the other stuff. I know on small scales, human societies have functioned without being completely awful to one another. But it seems like on a larger scale, this is what we've always done. Can we ever stop?

I hope things get better but I'm afraid they will get much worse. With everything that's happened in the past couple years, it seems like nothing's off the shit table.

I'm tired. I'm scared. I'm sad. I'm angry. I'm in mourning. I'm in shock.

This is not how things were supposed to be.

Anti-Fascists Slandered For Protecting People From Violence Fascist

Gotta take a break from the concentration camp content again, which maybe I can actually stop talking about only that because people are finally paying attention like they should. What I feel like I need to do today is counter this shit narrative that antifa assaulted a journalist. We don't know who started the altercation and Andy Ngo is not a journalist.

Andy Ngo is like the anti-journalist, and that's not just commentary. His blog, and I would like to mention here that when I was not employed as a journalist and only had my own blog I didn't try to call myself a journalist even when convenient, literally presents itself as a platform for people who are not journalists and regularly attacks actual journalists, feeding the incredibly dangerous ideas that there is some kind of liberal press conspiracy and generally working to weaken freedom of the press.

Andy Ngo in particular is known for his efforts to document the faces of those engaged in antifa work and journalists he considered sympathetic to antifa and then posting their faces online without consent so that fascists can doxx and harass them. He only calls himself a journalist when it serves him.

Like, for example, when he can make over $100,000 in less than a day with a GoFundMe for his "recovery" from a single punch to the face that resulted in minor bruising, and I guess whatever mental anguish he suffered from getting some silly string and milkshake on him.

This scam was fueled by the lie that there was somehow concrete or other chemicals mixed into the milkshakes he got hit with - a lie that rose and fell in about the same amount of time it took for him to make $100,000. Or when he can call this "antifa's brutal assault."

Keep in mind that Proud Boys, whom Andy Ngo supports and who support Andy Ngo, are still wandering the streets of various cities at night to find queer people and people of color to assault, and that this remains a requirement for entry into their fascist club. Those are brutal assaults. What killed Heather Heyer was a brutal assault. If a leftist posted a photo like the one Ngo is pushing as evidence of a "brutal assault," they'd be laughed off by the right as a fragile snowflake.

This is the fascist playbook right here. Accuse the left of being snowflakes and pushing false outrage when it comes to things like hate crimes, murder, and concentration camps, then immediately turn around and launch their outrage machine into full force when the left does anything to fight back or physically defend themselves.

The worst part is that so much of the mainstream news media falls for it.

A clash with demonstrators Saturday left conservative writer Andy Ngo with a brain hemorrhage, he wrote in an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday.

This is the lead into an article on what happened in Portland by The Oregonian, one of the state's top local news outlets. See how they present Ngo's version of the events like the truth first, following up with the fact that it's only his opinion in the part of the sentence that readers are going to gloss over? There is no evidence that Ngo suffered a brain hemorrhage. That's just what he said. He also said he suffered chemical burns from milkshakes. He "said he also suffered a ripped earlobe," but in the video the Oregonian links to, his earlobes look just fine. I didn't watch the whole thing but if the injury was that bad, you think there would be a bandage and he would have a photo of it somewhere, but nothing.

The Oregonian also calls antifa "a left-leaning militant group," which is completely incorrect but makes them sound all kinds of scary.

I don't know if the Oregonian is owned by Sinclair or a conservative white man or what, but it's not the only offender. My fellow journalists are accelerating their own destruction by engaging in this kind of bullshit, demonizing anti-fascists who protect protesters from actual fascists and presenting the side of anti-journalist, pro-fascist terrorists like Ngo like fact and failing to report on how he made a shitload of money off of the fake outrage. The Oregonian, Christina Morales, and so many other journalists and news outlets are complicit in our steady slide deeper into fascism.

Thanks a lot, assholes.