Notes

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Conservative view that people are to blame for (our own) poverty; is practical synthesis with liberal view radical?

Instant Message conversation, Tuesday, February 26, 2008

prino1 12:41
i need quick help if you have a second... i am having a hard time understanding the conservative view of things

regardless of how I feel

i need to be able to explain and understad why conservatives think people are to blame for poverty

on a micro- individual level

i just can't wrap my head around it

benjamin melançon 12:42
and how am i supposed to help? the only thing conservative about me is that i don't like old things being taken down

China Most Favored Trading Nation Status compounded harmful NAFTA results

In comments to an article on Clinton's NAFTA position:

Alexa, on February 25th, 2008 at 12:19 am Said:

PWGD Principles

[Very initial first rough start of a beginning of a draft.]

PWGD rules for being a PWGD service:
1. People rule. People who use your service can communicate with everyone else should they make a collective decision to do so. (This is why the democratically moderated communication is the base functionality.)
2. Free software (ideally, Affero GPL).

vegetable chili recipe from Cathy

vegetable chili recipie (Cathy, 2/19/08 6:41 PM)

no more eating alone

OK, this is a weird one. I have no self-control on some things, so I'm trying to work it in the back door. I know I won't be successful telling myself, don't eat that entire bag of tortilla chips (with the salsa, guacamole, and hummos to match), so how else do I control unhealthy overeating?

As of several days ago (and doing something for so long without a web declaration is a record), I, Benjamin Maurice Melançon, will only eat in the company of others.

So if I'm repeatedly offering you food, or suddenly ask you to lunch, or show up at your house for breakfast... you'll know why.

Don't Give People Blankets

This comment follows up on this blog post, "the political left", and following discussion, wherein it is determined that all love blankets, and all should have blankets, but the method of obtaining them is in dispute. The original author, Mikkel, said in his last comments that yes, 'we should give them money-- by giving them a job.'

Let's give people money, by giving them a job, by making sure everyone has money.

Why I loan on Kiva: statement on economic inequality

From my Kiva.org profile:

Counter-recruiting, PWGD, and Thinking Big

Counterrecruiting: very much a project for which I personally want to use PWGD. (PWGD tools, of course, are freely available for everything. Universal. That's the point. But if we who build it don't have some specific things in mind, we really lack imagination and purpose!)

(A discourse regarding the hypothetical People Who Give a Damn website...)

PWGD.org helps people who give a damn find one another and organize to take effective action on issues they care about. Right now these tools for connecting are pretty weak.

Divide and Rule: Romney Tried to Split Supporters of Queer Rights

The way I heard the story is that Romney shut down the William Weld initiated Governor's Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth when they tried to expand their formal charge, and name, to include transgender youth.

I can't find a news article that verifies this explicitly, but that certainly sounds like what was happening behind the scenes.

And I interpret that as an attempt, reportedly somewhat successful, to cause fighting within the movement.

In the last paragraph of these notes I go off on a tanget about economic injustice and oppression and sex and gender injustice and oppression that I think is worthwhile.

Romney Out with Good Riddance; Huckabee and McCain less hate prone; an establishment 3rd party candidate?

To a friend in Minnesota:

I was most specifically blaming you Minnesotans for nearly allowing the Mass.-enabled power-mad embodiment of pure evil... well, just an anecdote on dear old Mitt: A friend of mine told me that Romney made the Governor's Commission for Gay and Lesbian Youth take Transgender out of their name when they added it -- shutting it down until they did so. That's the way he thinks... divide and rule. [A little research on that]

A Movement Larger Than Electoral Politics is More Important Than Who is President

Quoting myself from over at RuralVotes' The Field:

One thing is certain. As Tom W. points out, there is not much distinction between Obama and Clinton on policy, and the term movement is being used pretty loosely.

Fun and respect and love and success and kindness and hope = PWGD

... but in a good way.

PWGD = fun and respect and love and success and kindness and hope

Jews in Connecticut Back Obama

See Dad? I told you Lieberman's win as an Independent (Republican) wasn't Jews' fault!

At least current exit poll demographic data suggests that Connecticut Jews may have voted against the sanctimonious sellout in 2006. From the Forward, hat tip to Al Giordano:

For all those yearning for Molly Ivins' political guidance

She did say unequivocally not Clinton.

Distributed dealing with e-mail

This blog post, about how to outsource your e-mail inbox, may be yet another example of hierarchy – hire people to read your e-mail! – but it could also help form a model for non-hierarchical, distributed dealing with e-mail– which an organization like PWGD will need to avoid falling afoul of the too big rule.

Genocide by Public Policy: First Peoples and the European Invasion

Here are my thoughts after talking to a friend upset by a professor who said ignorant things about the people of this hemisphere. He used the fact that most of the massive indigenous death in the Americas came from diseases, not guns, to dismiss the moral import of the centuries-long genocidal invasion of these continents by Europeans.

We need to make an exceedingly well backed up case to convince anyone of anything, or to build knowledge we can use to build a better world.

I think the argument must be, essentially, that what happened was genocide by public policy.

Cold water and hot food, a biological preference?

I suppose there's an evolutionary advantage to liking cold water and hot food – in both cases, more likely to be fresh (at least with the latter in case of meat, but I'm a vegan so don't take my word for any of that).

And stick to cold water. Municipal tap water in the U.S. is of good quality, but getting hot water from the tap can leach lead and other good stuff from your own home or building's pipes.

Stealing political office is a limiting of options; media does this all the time

Pat LaMarche (Green Party candidate for Vice President in 2004, what, you don't know her name?) has a nice opinion piece on How Easily Offices Are Stolen in the US that nicely draws the continuum from direct stealing (or assassination) to the indirect stealing of office by limiting options.

Power as permission to communicate

So PWGD:

the real asset most organizations can build isn't an amorphous brand but is in fact the privilege of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to people who want to get them.

... what people really want is the ability to connect to each other

Artfully excerpted from Seth Godin's "Tribe Management" post.

If a charity is advertized on national television, it's a scam

Christian Children's Fund

You've seen an advertisement. One of the few times you see the disenfranchised, the very poor, of the world on television. I guess that's a service in itself.

But what must the expenses be like to advertise on the CBS morning show?

They bring in more than $200 million a year, mostly in direct public support, indirect public support, and lastly from the government.

Right off the top they say they spend more than $30 million for advertising and management.