Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Deconstructing U.S Privilege

August 7, 2010

So the concept of so-call U.S privilege has been rolling around for a while. I was originally intrigued by the concept, and as a result, read quite a few takes on it. There was some interesting points mentioned, like the dominance of U.S media/movies. I doubt most Americans are aware of the extent of that domination, so it’s worth bringing up. However, most other points read more like a laundry list of things the authors disliked about Americans, not necessarily a part of privilege. As such, I’d like to clear them out of the way so I can discover more actual instances of US privilege.

Some of the more common points are:

1. US residents ignorance of matters outside of the good ole’ USA
2. USA military might/influence affecting other countries
3. “American” can supposedly refer to people on the 2 continents and ppl from the US STOLE THE TERM AMERICAN FROM THEM
4. the USA media is a bunch of meanies that won’t cover foreign things outside of disasters
5. american exceptionalism! americans think they’re such speshel snowflakes! WELL THEY ARE WRONG!
6. There are a lot of US-based websites! and websites in English!

Now, the first 2 tie into each other more, IMHO, more than any one has so far caught onto, and since that will be longer and complex, and since numero uno is also one of the biggest and most common complaing points, I’ll get to it last.

Rebuttal #3 “American” is a Stolen Term – This one is beaten by simple, kindergarten Geography. There is no “American” continent. Fullstop. If one wants to refer specifically to one’s continent, “North American” and “South American”, Central American, Latin American, all these work better and are more descriptive than the incorrect continental-referring term “American”. The Americas as more than one continent corresponds to both geological (N.&S. America are on separate tectonic plates) AND cultural divisions. A Canadian and an Argentinian both have very distinct, different cultural backgrounds. Let’s not erase them by smashing them together, kthx?

Rebuttal #4 The US Media Sucks – I agree with this one, actually. The US media is fracking stupid and gives more coverage on How to Cure Bad Breath than on *any* politics. Trust me dolls, your country is not being singled out- our elections aren’t any more important than Lindsey Lohan’s filthy, filthy panties* than your elections are. The mainstream USA media just fucking sucks, get over it. That’s not privilege, that’s a lack of a series resource.

“Belize doesn’t have hospitals?!?! Oh, those fucking Belizens and their Belize privilege! Running around and not needing hospitals like the rest of us!!!” Uhh if you missed the sarcasm, it doesn’t work like that. If a country lacks a resource that other countries have, that is not a privilege. That’s just sad.

Rebuttal #5: Americans and their Uniqueness – this one always makes lmao. You’d think a bunch of people that kissed psychology’s ass so much would be able to understand statistics. And the statistics show that not only is America unique, it’s a fucking sideshow freak. America leans toward extremeness in most ways of living/culture. We have the most people that live alone, we’re the most patriotic of any countries around today, of Western countries we’re one of the most religious (Ireland, Poland, and USA are all in the top 3 I think), we have the most military/defense spending. So pretty much if you’re trying to argue that America is like most other countries and not the gothy, fundy weirdo of nations; you might just need to see one of the much ass-kissed psychiatrists to get your IQ checked.

Rebuttal #6: Too Many US Websites: Sorry honey but that just comes from having a large, wealthy population. There are a lot of Chinese, Japanese, Brazilian, and Russian websites too. Sucks, dun it? I would admit that *is* a kind of privilege, but it’s not one unique to the USA, so it’s not a specific US-privilege, it’s just large-country-privilege. I also don’t deny English-speaking privilege, but somehow I never see these complaining Canadians and New Zealanders owning up to that… Nonetheless, the US has one of the largest Spanish-speaking populations in the world. Claiming English-speaker-privilege=USA-privilege just serves to erase them, and once again, we’re not the only ones mouthing off in English on the internet.

Rebuttal #1&2: American Ignorance & Military Might As Privilege!

This is actually one of the sadder ones but I’ll give it an informal go. Despite our “USian privilege” we’re one of the few developed nations without government healthcare. Yeah, that’ll be changing in a couple years and we’ll see how it goes, but right now I still can’t go to the doctor with the sore throat I have today, or the sores all over my feet that were oozing pus and blood. Weird thing for a privileged USian to experience, huh? But it’s actually pretty common for us.

I didn’t really come to bitch about that though, but to point out a few facts. Here’s the 2009 USA military expenditure in US dollars: 663,255,000,000. Almost 50% of the world military expenditure is from the US. Admittedly, 4 or 5 other countries have a higher percent of their GDP dedicated to military spending (like our BFF Israel).

Now maybe if we weren’t throwing $600 or $700 billion dollars into God only knows what, I could go and show my nasty ass feet to some know-it-all doctor. But, you say, that is just a sacrifice we choose to make, and our military privilege is the pay-off?

Wrong. Most of the what the military does, when it’s creating free markets (hahahaha) for American goods and such, is done to aid a couple big corporation fat cats. If it ever helped a significant amount of Americans, I’ll smile and kiss a pig.

Then there’s the choice thing. To make a true choice, one has to be informed, don’t they? But somehow we’re known to be the most ignorant people alive. And I agree with that. It’s a sad, true fucking fact. But that’s not a choice either, as any American would know. Our history/geography/foreign/language etc. studies are fucking horrible. Here’s my old summary of it:

Cause history as taught in American schools goes something like this:

PILGRIMS PILGRIMS WIGWAMS PILGRAMS
REVOLUTIONARY WAR REVOLUTIONARY WAR REVOLUTIONARY WAR
(yeah the french may have been involved in there somewhere but WE REALLY DID IT ALL ON OUR OWN /pats america on the back)
CIVIL WAR oh them poor boys didn’t know what they was doin’, racism is bad
/repeat all that until middle school
MAYAS N INCANS N AZTECS CAUSE THAT’S SO MORE RELEVANT THAN NORTH AMERICAN NATIVES OR ANY OTHER HISTORY DUR
ANCIENT EGYPT TOTALLY RELEVANT TOTALLY
CONSTITUTION

then finally high school. Where you might not touch World History and WWII until your jr./senior year, depending on your school :/ My class that was supposed to cover WII ran out of time and only got to the Great Depression. Several other people confirmed this happening to them as well.

OH YEAH FORGOT VIETNAM NEVER HAPPENED. THE END.

Lately, and I suspect I’m being paranoid, I’ve begun to suspect it’s taught in such a repetitive and stupid way to deliberately keep us disinterested in history/politics and make us see them as boring and confusing. Because American history is NOT taught in schools. We never learned about the Spanish-American War, Guatemala, Panama, the Sandcreek Massacre, the stealing of Georgia as soon as gold was found there, we never covered Vietnam at all, ad infinitum, ad nauseum :/ All nations have nasty, shameful events in their pasts. Betcha fur I could do a study of how history is taught by each nationality, and how much of their bad shit they own up to, and the more honest they are, the less patriotic they are. And America is, as we know, the most patriotic country.

Is it so crazy to think that our education, our very knowledge, has been sacrificed so that our military might can continue keeping the world safe and profitable for big corporations and their CEOs? If we were given a decent, honest education about our history and the world, would the military keep getting their blank check and automatic approval for their wars?

It’s a lot harder when you were spoon-fed the same drivel for 18 years and now you have to go learn the rest of all the history outside of the Revolutionary War in just a couple years, and spend your life trying to catch up on that deficiency. How is being denied education and kept ignorant privilege? How is being subjected to near brainwashing privilege? How is being able to interact with non-Americans correctly privilege?

As I understood it, one of the facets of privilege was that the privileged group usually received some benefit from the privilege. Knowledge of the world and foreign language are a strength in terms of being competitive in the job market; the lack of people with the proper knowledge in the US as compared to outside is a weakness, it is no way a strength. I think even Obama has acknowledged the need for it and said it was important to change.

*I have no idea if Lindsey Lohan’s panties are filthy. Plz don’t sue.
**I also have no clue as to the state of hospitals in Belize, having never been to a hospital there 🙂
***If anyone thinks ignorance of history is a choice, keep class/location considerations in mind. As a kid, my family hardly ever had access to a car, let alone a computer or the internet. As an adult, one has more of a choice, but it still stands that most Americans are at a disadvantage/drastically behind people from other countries by the time they get that choice.

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You are now a rich, white, straight, cisgendered, able-bodied man.

June 17, 2010

Let’s talk about an irritating trend that I see happening all over. See, everyone’s always excited over diversity in politics. That politics is and has been the playground of mostly rich white males is so obvious it never even has to be stated.

Who wouldn’t be excited to see more women, non-whites, gay, transgendered, etc. politicians to represent them? Well, apparently liberals, I am honestly surprised to say. As far as diversity goes, the theory seems to be that if you are a woman politican, but you support policies that go against liberal women’s ideas of what’s good for women, then you cease to be a woman.

You are no longer a woman. You are something else, a pawn perhaps, for men, because you couldn’t *possibly* have came up with those ideas yourself. You’re a black man and not a liberal? Sorry, you no longer count as a black politician. You don’t make things more diverse. You don’t make more equal representation. Oh, and you’re gay? But you became a politician because of foreign policy and free trade? And you actually don’t care about fighting for gay marriage rights?

Perish the thought, dear. You are not gay any longer. If you do not subscribe to the ideas of white, middle-class liberals, please line up and have your race, gender identity, and sexuality erased. You are now a rich, white, straight, cisgendered, able-bodied man. Please don’t complain about this-it’s no one’s fault but your own. Were you so naive as to think you could follow your genuine feelings on political issues?

Liberals, pat yourself on the back. Of course it’s your God-granted right to erase people’s race/gender/etc when they cease to agree with you.

Missouri 2010 Elections

June 5, 2010

With the Missouri primaries coming up this August, today I began my research on the candidates and who would be running.

While looking at the U.S Senate runners, I came across the Missouri Progressive Party’s Midge Potts She supports universal healthcare. That doesn’t necessarily mean she supported the piece of trash excuse for a bill that was passed by Obama & cronies. I’m not opposed to healthcare reform-what I am opposed to is all the political armtwisting and backhanded tactics used to pass the current bill, as well as how huge, convoluted, and chopped to fucking shit the healthcare bill that was passed was. Unlike the pathetic feel-good lack-of-addressing any issue that the Democratic candidate shows, Midge is extraordinary clear about exactly what she’ll try to do for this country, and Missouri. She’s also transgendered, has a history of political activism, and is a veteran, complicating her appeal for many voters. (in other words, MO, like many states, has an ample amount of close-minded foo’s filling out the ballot)

Other than Midge, the current options for the 2010 U.S Senate race are an utter, complete, SLIMEBAG of a man for the Republican party (and the idiot supports being on your parents insurance till you’re 27, as well as working to ban gay marriage, cutting all dental coverage for adult Medicaid patients, and fembots, his positions on abortion are of course, the worst) and a Democratic candidate who says she would’ve voted for the healthcare bill, and who actually seems pretty silent on the issues, other than some feel-good support education and farm families on her website.

Other candidates running include Glenn Miller, who I didn’t bother to read much about, seeing as how his site is covered in Confederate flags and he is a apparently a white supremacist (one of his campaign promises deals with “the Jews Running the World”, if that tells you anything), as well as the Libertarian candidates, Jonathan Dine.

In short, I don’t much like the two likely winners of the main parties. Thank God for third parties. Belonging to the Republican or Democratic party washes all the personality out of politicians. Or maybe R&D parties just naturally attract bland, personality-lacking drones who can’t do anything other than mumble mindless placating drivel. Third party runners are almost shockingly honest about their stance on the issues and often clearly show their true personalities, which is probably why they so rarely get elected. Could you picture Bush, Clinton, or McCain telling voters they were going to keep whites in a position of privilege and power? No. Their actions may be discriminatory, their hearts might be racist, but they will never have the fucking stones or honesty to tell people that.

Is Obama for legalizing marijuana right now like the Green Party candidate? No. And there is not a single, logical reason not to. But instead of following reason and doing what’s best for this country, he panders to the hypocritical Americans that smoked pot regularly but oh noes! their kids might smoke pot if it was legal. Like they don’t do it anyway. Alcohol is more destructive than marijuana, maybe Democrats should get on banning tha-Oh Wait. A few people have prophesied the end of one of the two main parties-however, they assumed the Republican party would be the one to go. I personally think it’ll be the Democratic Party, giving way to a less right-wing party.

That Old Immigration Trope Again

June 2, 2010

So there’s a bill rolling around that would change the current law (citizenship to anyone born on U.S soil) so that like many countries, a child born in the U.S would need to have a parent that was a citizen or legal resident.
I find myself incredibly amused. Looking at a list of nations that grant citizenship to babies born on the soil, regardless of parents, I found that there were almost all American countries (U.S&Canada, South America, Caribbean, etc. )

What about those Europeans? You know, those countries with the AWESOME health care systems that are so superior to ours, not to mention a superior education system, among all the other European laws some people *cough*liberals*cough find better than ours.

So liberals, any takers? Do you think the general European trend (demanding a parent of born child be a citizen or resident as well) to be superior to the United States’? I’m sure you want to make the citizenship laws stricter, yes?

Or could it even be… that what is good for Europe, is not necessarily best for us? Or even best at all?

May 20th is “Everybody Draw Mohammad Day”

May 20, 2010

To promote free speech and religious freedom, those of who can are exercising our right to draw Mohammad.
Well, I actually drew Meowhammad.

He looks better in full view, but I didn’t want to break the page with a huge image.

the usefulness of ethnic studies

May 13, 2010

Today I read that Arizona had cut ethnic studies classes. In truth I am less interested in the right or wrong of this particular move, and more interested in the actual usefulness of ethnic study classes.

Assuming two things, that
1. Ethnic studies classes are popular with people of the studied heritage
2. Minority students have a tougher time getting into good colleges, and lower graduation rates

I wonder if it’s really a good idea for a minority student to take them at all? I would encourage my own children (if/when I have some) to take math, science, or computer electives, possibly more foreign language classes. Regardless of whether you think Admissions tests like the SATs or ACT tests are useful, they are still required to get into many good schools. I just don’t see how knowing about the heritage and history of a certain culture/ethnic group will help one perform better on them. If your heart is set on formally studying it, there’s plenty of room for electives at college.

Also, assuming that one is legitimately interested in that heritage, and not just looking for an easy A, I have never found history/culture a particularly hard subject to research. Partly because it’s what I enjoy the most, but a lot of people love writing about their experiences living in other countries and dealing with other cultures. With the internet, it’s not difficult to ask people of those cultures first-hand either. Your own relatives may have valuable information.

Another issue I have with ethnic studies is that there is almost no way most public schools could offer a class for every student’s particular heritage. That will inevitably deny a group, whether it’s Mexican-Americans, African-Americans, German-Americans (you get the picture) the ability to formally study their own culture in a middle/high school setting. Cultures with small populations will inevitably lose out. I suggested earlier that there just be a class where students do an individual heritage study or study a particular culture and each do reports, presentations, etc on it. That’s a possibility, but I still think it’s a wasted credit. School should help you study what you cannot do on your own-a student wanting to weight-train, but lacking their own gym equipment, can often take a gym elective and gain access to the weight room. A budding astronomy enthusiast can gain equipment access without having to shell out their own cash for a telescope, etc.

I studied Spanish in high school, and we learned quite a bit about the Spanish-speaking countries and their cultures and histories. If not for Spanish-I I would have no clue about how Mexico gained it’s independence. Many say the best way to study a country or it’s culture is to study it’s language. Yet, while I’ve seen African-American Studies offered, apparently the non-Colonial languages of Africa have no usefulness in the eyes of educators, or pro-ethnic studies people, because I have NEVER seen any African language classes offered.

What does an ethnic studies class provide that can’t be found at home, or at a library? I very much welcome the experiences and opinions of people that have been in or taught an ethnic studies class. Or anybody’s opinions on the matter.

What prompted this post? SCHOOL IS OUT! 😀

Civil Unions and Why They Suck

May 13, 2010

You know, people have asked me how I can so virulently oppose civil unions and yet call myself a supporter of gay rights.

To me, they look like nothing but another attempt at ‘separate but “equal”‘ new gay marriage version.
People for civil unions often say there is nothing special about the word marriage, but if so, why don’t we all, het&homo alike, have civil unions instead? Or, y’know, we could all have marriages 🙂

To me they are the biggest put-down, spit-on, slap-in-the-face that could ever be dreamed of for a gay person. Call me a disgusting, vile prevert, a corrupter of children, soulless and destined for hell, but don’t throw me a shitty table-scrap bone like “civil unions” and expect me to kiss your ass and be grateful for it.

It’s a funny thing about rights-they’re inherent, aren’t they? So why should you be happy when someone is offering you less than your full right?

I am always told I should support these people that want same-sex couples to be able to have a civil union. But the thing is, these people, usually Democrats or liberals, really should know better. They have utterly no excuse. They do not have a fanatical evangelistic demographic to cater for, and are supposed to be the politicians for the working man, the oppressed, the minority. What is their excuse? Fuck them. I’ll vote for the guy telling me I’m going to hell before I’ll vote for you, you little half-assed cowardly homo-hating asshole who doesn’t even have the guts to call a homosexual a dyke or a faggot and evil. Because surely that’s what someone thinking “civil unions are ok but marriage? hey no!” really believes, the shit-eating cretins.

Such people are not even worthy of being spat on.

/my exclusive individual opinion, which is likely quite different than yours but hey! that’s ok cause different lives, thoughts, personalities, etc. I have no problems with people getting them where they’re available, but I do have a serious issue with being expected to act like someone is the Savior of teh Gays because they support the right to “civil unions”.

May 5, 2010

Sen. Mike Bennett Caught Looking at Entertaining Videos on Senate Floor during an abortion law debate.

The mandatory ultrasounds is a damned sad waste of government money, which most Republicans claim to be against. Medicaid doesn’t cover abortions in most cases, but if you are poor and pregnant, in most cases you will automatically qualify for Medicaid, which would cover an ultrasound.

Gotta love how everyone jumps on the omg!he-was-watching porn boat though. Sure, undressing can be alluring, but it doesn’t sound particularly graphic, and anygays, the female body should be appreciated whenever possible :] All the video he watched (and that everyone’s peeing their pants over and labeling porn) was some women removing their swimsuit tops. Hardly porn.

Immigration Again-MO style

May 3, 2010

So Missouri is one of 10 states considering following in Arizona’s footsteps on this immigration bill. No surprise, considering one of the people with a hand in creating the bill was a Missouri professor. The Missouri immigration law will target anyone who conceals or gives shelter to an illegal immigrant. Supposedly, it is to crack down on people smuggling immigrants into the state.

What it brings to mind for me are the shelters for victims of domestic violence in this state-some of who undoubtedly, give shelter to victims who are also in the country illegally. Now, I’m sure some are willing to break the laws when it comes to concealing and aiding women in need, but I don’t know that all of them would. For that reason, the impact of this bill worries me 😦

Other than that, there’s not much to attack about this bill. Missouri’s immigrants, while I’m sure many are from Mexico and South America, are not solely from there. There are many from Europe and Asia as well, so at least the issue of racial profiling will be abated. That doesn’t mean it’ll be a cakewalk for legal immigrants and anyone sporting a foreign accent. Also, the Arizona bill has been reworked to make it clearer that racial profiling is not tolerable. So, let’s see how this all works out.

Arizona Hubbub

April 28, 2010

Disgusting.
Everyone’s talking about the recent Arizona immigration reform. I’ve heard people being civil on both sides and people being stupid, ignorant, and bigoted on both sides.

But! Why was it that I was surprised to see the protesters against this bill holding up signs comparing it to Nazidom, calling Arizona “Naziona” and the like. Shit. Ain’t. Cool.

For all the worries about racial profiling, violation of human rights, etc., the fact remains that there are many, many countries out there that are much stricter and harsher in dealing with illegal immigrants. I really don’t think they, or Arizona’s new bill, are quite comparable to the genocide and mass murders that went on under Hitler. People are not being rounded up and killed, illegal immigrants or otherwise.

And! This coming so shortly after the Tea Partiers were scolded by the left for waving signs with Obama sporting a Hitler mustache… Just like the liberal anti-war protesters adorned Bush with during his presidency. My point? What the hell is wrong with people, honestly? I am starting to think that just thinking about politics turns people crazy. Also, that while I often see hypocrisy on every bit of the political spectrum, liberals lately are working very hard to do their part and reach the top of the hypocrisy pile.

You know, if I had any faith in humanity left at all, I might be a little sad that one of the most tragic events in history is continually exploited to toy with people’s emotions over relatively petty matters. Good thing my faith=0%.

And Obama thinks immigrants should have to learn English. ROFL what that has to do with this I don’t even, not to mention it’s a total reversal from what he’s said and voted before. I really don’t see why anyone should have to learn English to live in this country. Sure, it helps, but I think the language used in this country should stand on it’s own usefulness, not on forcing people to use it.

Also: I challenge you, dear reader, that if you are having an opinion on this bill, please go read the goddamned thing. Legalese is boring, but if you’ve gotten the summary from your grandmother or favorite biased blog, the least you can do is go skim the important, tasty bits of it if you plan on opening your mouth on the subject.

Adieu! for today.