tielan: (AVG - agents)
Wednesday, July 19th, 2017 02:59 pm
Australia
Tony Abbot Is Not Voldemort: or when dramatic licence overcomes accuracy.
There is no Voldemort in Australian politics. We are fortunate not to have an evil that absolute.

We Can Revive Our Story: Indigenous Australians rewriting their traditional food songs to incorporate western nutrition so their future generations can learn. An example of cultural adaptation?

Faith, Politics, and Culture
Despotism As A Function Of Absolute Capitalism: with money,
you will be "more free"?
In one respect, Buchanan was right: there is an inherent conflict between what he called “economic freedom” and political liberty. Complete freedom for billionaires means poverty, insecurity, pollution and collapsing public services for everyone else. Because we will not vote for this, it can be delivered only through deception and authoritarian control. The choice we face is between unfettered capitalism and democracy. You cannot have both.

Viome, Greece: Where Capitalism Failed: it's a little bit of an existence on the edge, but it's also a glimpse of what a society without capitalism might look like.

Again in Greece: Arabic Refugees Making The Better World In Defiance Of The Soulless West: Again, illegal, but a far better version of humanity than we frequently see in our 'civilised' societies.

"Women Should Not Teach Men" - 1 Timothy 2 In Context: A letter about a local situation is turned into a church wide blanket statement because of the pride of men. Exegesis goes back to the Koine Greek.

It's Not About Race: white people, culture, and being forced into a discussion that most of them don't even recognise is weighted.

Is Demography Destiny For Democrats? The Short Answer Is 'No'. Jason Kander, whom a political friend told me to keep an eye on, has a few interesting things to say about Demographics and the Democratic Party.

Evangelicals And 'The Left': Is There That Much Difference In Attitude?
Have you noticed how Fundamentalist preachers are always proclaiming that there’s some fuller experience of blessing available to their congregations, one they themselves have achieved but for which the listener has to keep striving (or giving)?

Well, according to Frances Lee, the Left does the same: “In trying to liberate readers from the legitimately oppressive structures, I worry that [certain] sites… are replacing them with equally restrictive orthodoxy on the other end of the political spectrum.”
An interesting perspective on 'purity culture' on the left-wing, where any failure to be absolutely progressive isn't just a place where someone has to learn, but a permanent and unchangeable moral failing that can only be responded to by outcasting.

general
Five Easy To Make Homemade Air-Conditioners... Must do this this summer!

the theory of shitty first drafts: your first draft is not the story, it's you telling yourself how the story could go. I need to finish a first draft.
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tielan: (24 - Renee2)
Wednesday, July 12th, 2017 11:11 am
Four Words As The Key To Seeming Polite.
However, I suspect this is so long as you can keep from telegraphing your boredom if you aren't able to be attentive to what they're saying.

How To Help A Child Grieve And Cope When A Parent Dies.
You've heard me speak about my cousin T on this journal before. This is an article about how she and her husband prepared their five year-old son for her death; he was on ABC radio a couple of days ago, in an interview they recorded about this.

Three Strategies To Use To Combat Sexist Interruptions
Jumping-off point from Kamala Harris' dealings in the Senate with Old White Men Who Think Colored Women (Or All Women) Should Just Shut UP.

Wonder Woman Might Be The Most Accurate On-Screen Depiction Of Biblical Womanhood And Here's Why
'Ezer' - the term translated into English as "helper" is only used a handful of times in the bible - but apart from the creation of woman as 'helper' all the other ones refer to God as the one who raises up the helpless, succours the struggling, and brings strength and assistance to the hopeless.

A Childless Woman's Response To 'You're Missing Out'
Even the most enlightened of my friends has occasionally succumbed to 'smug motherhood', a.k.a. "You can't understand until you have children."

Why Women Aren't Having Children
And related to the previous link: some thoughts on childlessness/childfreeness. Although the essays aren't just women, but men as well.

The Procrastination Loop And How To Break It
I need to sit my sister down and get her to read this, I think.

And a recipe:
Better Than Brad Pitt
(Personally, I think the title dates it: substitute Chris Evans; or Chris Hemsworth; Or Gal Gadot; or whoever Floats Your Boat.)

Oh, and here. Have "The Arrival Of The Queen of Sheba In King Solomon's Court" in an arrangement for brass. I recommend not playing it on, say, a quiet train!

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tielan: (AVG - maria2)
Monday, July 10th, 2017 12:30 pm
DW customization: mobile and color by [personal profile] ironymaiden

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Indigenous Australians from a NYT American correspondant.

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Technological Utopianism Will Not Save Humanity

There's a long section about the way we think, cultural bias and blind spots, and cultural hypocrisy. It's interesting that he likens technological utopianism and the belief in science (and in humanity as rational beings capable of becoming better through scientific discovery) to religion.
When someone sits there claiming that science will solve this and that at some unspecified future date, the ‘science as saviour’ narrative as I call it, I might as well just be listening to a religious fanatic extolling their faith because that is all it is.
I tend to call this 'the Gene Rodenberry proposition' - Star Trek, with it's fabricators capable of making anything, which thereby eliminates need in humanity, allow it to reach for the stars? AHAHAHA. No. We as humanity already have the capability to feed and clothe and give everyone a life; we just have no interest in doing it because there's nothing in it for our sense of social superiority.

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Urban Farming: Neither white, nor middle aged, nor midwest - not the typical image of a farmer, nor white, hippie, and new-age - not the typical image of an urban farmer...

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Hillary Clinton: Leader of the Opposition?

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The Gospel Of Jesus' Wife

The problem is not scientific testing to prove age and/or accuracy of material composition; it's possible to buy a piece of papyrus of the right age, make up ink, learn an ancient language, and fake something that's correct in all the material particulars and will pass rigourous scientific testing.

The problem is provenance - whose hands it passed through, the chain of people and memory and connection - the things which are much harder to fake.

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How Germany Resisted Populism

To me, this article indicates quite clearly why Republicans aren't interested in 'equality'. When people think they're hard done by, they fall back on racist animus and the "us vs. them" proposition - they close ranks and shut out the outsider, whether that's people of a different religion, a different skin colour, or a different mentality.

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How To Deal With North Korea (Or Not)

Why sometimes having the bigger weapon doesn't help.

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White Christian America Called: They Want Their Supremacy Back:
White evangelicals have entered a grand bargain with the self-described master dealmaker, with high hopes that this alliance will turn back the clock. And Donald Trump’s installation as the 45th president of the United States may in fact temporarily prop up, by pure exertions of political and legal power, what white Christian Americans perceive they have lost. But these short-term victories will come at an exorbitant price. Like Esau, who exchanged his inheritance for a pot of stew, white evangelicals have traded their distinctive values for fleeting political power. Twenty years from now, there is little chance that 2016 will be celebrated as the revival of White Christian America, no matter how many Christian right leaders are installed in positions of power over the next four years. Rather, this election will mostly likely be remembered as the one in which white evangelicals traded away their integrity and influence in a gambit to resurrect their past.
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Fines Don't Work: Library Axes Fines, Rate Of Return Improves:
‘‘When help is offered for no compensation in a moment of need, accept it with restraint. When a service is offered for a price, buy as much as you find convenient,” Gneezy and Rustichini wrote in their paper.

The Book That Predicted Trump’s Rise Offers the Left a Roadmap for Defeating Him

The activist parts that I've seen online seem more willing to take the suggested advice - to take on politics instead of just protesting or occupying or public shaming. Not all of them obviously; the endless round of links to petitions, or articles that declare outrage suggest that most people would rather click than call their rep. But it's a start.
tielan: (books - shiny)
Thursday, June 22nd, 2017 10:41 pm
NPR: Why Honeybees Are The Wrong Problem To Solve

From what I understand, the problem is less that 'without bees we won't be able to pollinate anything' and more 'the way we agribusiness is a problem - and the way we use bees in agribusiness is part of that problem'.

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NPR: The Astrobiology Of The Anthropocene (2016)

Basically, like the Jurassic, Triassic, and other '-cene' eras, we're now in the Anthropocene. A new way of looking at things.

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The Establishment: Adoption Is A Feminist Issue (But Not For The Reasons You Think)

Ties in with abortion and childbearing, and (I think) points out the issue that if women weren't crowded into a place where they have no economic choices/advantages, then both adoption and abortion rates would drop.

Which is pretty much what this article I linked to (from a Christian minister in Sydney) points out - that having children economically disadvantages women, and if we as a society (or culture, or community) are not going to help a woman bear the burden of children, then even the ones who eventually want children are going to abort if they become pregnant at an inconvenient time.

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The Atlantic: The Cheapest Generation

What do you do when an entire generation of society largely don't want or can't afford the products you're selling? What does that do to the model of economic growth?

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Sydney Morning Herald: Three Women Who Regret Motherhood

Earlier this week, I asked if there was any socially acceptable way for a woman to indicate she regretted having children. The kick for that question was this article.

I think the most helpful thing I got was [personal profile] havocthecat saying that perhaps there needs to be some kind of 'mourning ceremony' for all the things that are going to be lost in having a child. A baby shower is supposed to be the joyful, hopeful, encouraging thing, but we don't talk about the negative side of changes to a woman's status when she becomes a mother.

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Racked: The Politics of Pockets (2016)

How and why women's clothing has no pockets.

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The New Yorker: China's Mistress Dispellers

The people who are hired to get rid of China's mistresses - chase them off, buy them out - whatever works. And the culture and sociology and reasoning behind the scenes of such a business, as well as an insight into a brief history of Chinese marriage.

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The New Yorker: Power To The People (2015)

An article about solar power and the part that utility companies - and regulation - may have to play in that; to their advantage, but in the face of the old model. (Man, how does that sound familiar.)

There was an interesting article that popped up as a result of this (or which popped this up as a result) about solar power in Africa - that's a 2017 article, about startups in Africa selling cheap power to sub-Saharan Africans, the advantages, disadvantages, and moral questions. I don't know where that article is, though - I thought I saved it, but maybe not.

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Modern Maker's Retreat: A New Perspective on Modern Quilting

The last few years have seen arguments over what defines modern quilting, and this woman has an interesting perspective on it all (and one which I've lightly touched on in quilting blogging). Quilting used to be a thrift task - done because there were scraps that needed to be used rather than wasted. Now, it's a creative work of art - done for the joy of it, and by people who have the resources to spend on function-specific tools and fabric. She thinks that's the difference between 'traditional' and 'modern' quilting for her. I can't entirely agree; I think colour and fabric and style comes into play as well.
tielan: Wonder Woman (WW - bracelets)
Tuesday, June 20th, 2017 08:33 am
Actually, I think it's the same problem that Marvel is facing now for me: heroic heroes vs. world weary Nietzchean ubermensch.

polygon.com: The DCEU has a problem — everybody likes Wonder Woman
With Wonder Woman, Patty Jenkins has returned the focus to humanity writ large. She recognizes that superheroes resonate precisely because their stories are familiar. Yes, Diana is better than the rest of us. As a fictional character, she can do things we can’t, from both a moral and physical perspective. However, that doesn’t make her alien. In the film, her actions instill the allied forces with courage and resolve. The later heroics of Steve, Sameer & Co are less spectacular, but their contributions are no less meaningful and the audience is equally able to learn from that example. Diana inspires everyone around her to be better. That gives the film genuine warmth and makes Wonder Woman relevant to anyone watching in a theater.

But the quotation that I found particularly interesting in the context of my (rapidly dying) love of the MCU is this:
He [Snyder] wants to see Batman have a dustup with Superman, and he’s not overly concerned about how mere mortals relate to the personal struggles of gods.
Which is pretty much how I feel about CACW: the point that would have made for the most interesting movie regarding the nature of heroes - the Accords - was pretty much just a McGuffin so we could eventually see Iron Man fight Captain America (and the Winter Soldier).
tielan: (LOL)
Friday, June 16th, 2017 03:26 pm
Except I have no gifsets. So here, have some links instead!

buzzfeed: Australians Are Using Turnbull's Leaked Trump Impression To Troll Stupid Americans: Remember that woman who planned to move to Australia after Obama was elected, because the PM was a Christian, and it turned out that our PM was a redheaded female in a defacto relationship and we had gun control?

Well, this is kind of the same thing. Although in this case, the Aussie PM made fun of Trump at a media dinner and someone leaked the footage. And, of course, a lot of Americans got mouth-frothy at the disrespect. Of course, us being Australians, we can't resist sallying back - with extra mockage. Because we're Australians: we'll laugh at just about anything...

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Why Are Republicans So Cruel To The Poor:
The myth of meritocracy and its cousin, the myth of individualism, exert a powerful hold over many Americans. Social scientists and others have repeatedly demonstrated that American society is not a true meritocracy. Other research has shown that intergenerational income and class mobility are also relatively uncommon in the United States.


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everydayfeminism: Equality vs. equity.

There was a really good article about equality vs fairness that I read linked off FB, but thanks to my FB app reverting back to the most recent post in my feed when I back out of an article, I can't find it anymore. It had a good explanation of the question of fairness - the idea of deserving and undeserving.

I think that's something worth considering when discussing things with conservatives: their idea of 'fairness' doesn't match the ones that liberals tend to hold - "all men are born equal" they say, even as liberals cry out in the voice of Meg Murry: "equal does not mean the same!"

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the guardian: Indian Muslims are setting up a system whereby they negotiate for their daughters to marry without dowries

“We travelled to different Muslim areas and held seminars and meetings and explained to people how the practice of dowry goes against the teachings of Islam. We have involved imams, qazis and community leaders in all Muslim villages in the three districts,” Ali said.

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the guardian: The Universal Basic Income, arguments for and against.

including this comment which I have reproduced in its entirety )

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Tumblr: Wonder Woman: "I believe in love." The argument that it doesn't have to be romantic love that changes the way Diana looks at humanity - their capacity for great good and not just great evil.

SBS.com: The Supper Clubs that are quietly fighting racism. I think the last time one of these was anywhere near me, it was already booked out.

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the guardian: the donut model of economics by George Monbiot. I need to read this more closely - may have linked this here before, but I don't remember anymore.

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Finally, here: have Handel's "Arrival Of The Queen Of Sheba In Solomon's Court" - WITH BRASS.

The Sydney Symphony Orchestra performed this at the last concert my sister and I went to at the start of June and it was BEAUTIFUL in person.
tielan: (AVG - agents)
Tuesday, May 30th, 2017 03:28 pm
Had lunch. Am now in the food coma zone. Coffee will probably have to follow shortly, although I usually try to avoid two cups in a day.

(Does anyone else get kind of high on a second cup of coffee? Like your brain goes a little floaty.)

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The 1-6 tooth (with the root canal) is feeling vaguely 'fizzy' again. I'm not sure it's ever going to feel 'normal' again. I'm also getting mild aches in the head again, and the right foot is again feeling very sensitive.

I'm chalking all this up to playing hockey - increased sensitivity in one part buzzing all the pain and sensitivity channels in the rest of my body. It's still a little disturbing, and kind of exhausting.

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Parentals are home on Friday, B1 will probably move back in that night. It will be nice to have someone else in the house again.

And then I offered to cook dinner on Saturday...

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Australian Populism: What If Australia already had its Trump moment...and it was Tony Abbott?

Perhaps not all is lost?

Mind you, Australia is very different to the rest of 'the West' - ocean borders, a much younger nationalistic identity and therefore not as entrenched, a western country in a very non-white region, and one of the most urban populations in the world with corresponding intermingling of culture and influx of immigrants. As a result, the reasons that populism has perhaps passed are not necessarily going to be replicated in Europe and the North Americas.

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Sydney Writer's Festival: Six Things We Learned

1. "On Such Small Things Do Fate And The Future Depend": Hitler, Drugs, the Third Reich, And The Movement Of Mussolini.
2. "Not What You Can Write, But How Do You Write It?": A white man writes a story about a black man raping a white woman and hands it in to his black Lit teacher. It's gonna be a long discussion class tomorrow...
3. "The Immigrant And The Xenophobe Are Close Cousins When It Comes To The Concept Of Refuge": is refuge what we seek or what we defend? Is refuge a refuge if it isn't exclusionary by nature and therefore sought?
4. "The White Gaze And Review Culture": White people can review anything, but Indigenous reviewers are only relevant when it's Indigenous culture.
5. "As Many Brits Living Outside Of Britain as Syrians Living Outside Of Syria": facts and the distortion of them for false inference.
6. "There's Always Someone In The Audience Who Wants To Get Their Id Out In Public": #NotAllAudienceQuestions

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Racism: Poisonous Racism At The Root Of Western Societies

“This is my history too,” Tempest continued, her voice shaky. “I’m living it, it’s happening. We are at the end of colonial history, British history. I want to say something to you, I want to be able to talk about it. Guilt is not good enough any more. Guilt is narcissism. Your guilt is about you. My guilt is about me. It’s not good enough.

“Empathy. Empathy, humility, reparation and change,” she urged.
tielan: (don't make me shoot you)
Monday, May 29th, 2017 08:56 am
I had:
  • breakfast with a friend
  • osteopath appointment
  • planting out and cleaning up the garden
  • binding the Duct Tape Galaxy
  • quilting group sew-in
  • watch Team 1 hockey
  • play Team 3 hockey
  • go to church
  • buy hamburger for Sunday night dinner and wonder where the weekend went so damn fast!
So, yeah, the weekend was a thing that happened in a really short period of time.

First full week at work, and obviously they don't have me so super busy I don't have time to write an entry about my weekend.

I'm going to see Wonder Woman this Thurday when it comes out in Australia - the 6:30pm session with a bunch of friends. I'm very excited (and, y'know, pretty uncritical b/c WONDER WOMAN MOVIE WOOHOO) and if I like it enough, I may drag another friend (or two) along at some point on the rest of opening weekend. (And movie tickets around here are NOT CHEAP, LET ME TELL YOU.)

SO. EXCITED.

(And I need icons.)

But I have to get from here to there first. Which means looking at that problem that has just popped up on my work dash.

Also: leaving you a link from the Sydney Writer's Festival: “It’s been comforting to come here and talk to so many people who understand why we’re panicked and share that panic, to feel like we’re not just alone in our freaking out.”

You are not alone in your freaking out.
tielan: (XM - scott)
Friday, April 14th, 2017 09:18 pm
Blogspot: Me-Made May - Sign Up
I'm trying to work out what to do for this - or if I do it at all. The challenge is usually to wear one thing you made every day of the month. I reckon it's easier when May is a month that's tending towards summer instead of one where everything is getting cold and rainy.

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Youtube: "Clarke and Dawe: Cyclone Malcolm. This is a Watch and Act Warning."
Unlikely any but Australians will get this. Laugh and cry and weep at the passing of a great comedian.

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The Guardian: The Destruction Of Hillary Clinton: Sexism, Sanders, and the Millenial Feminist Or: How To Burn Your Own Bridges While You're Standing On It Screaming That Someone In Politics Isn't Good Enough For Your Extremely Speshul Vote.

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Dreamwidth: Thoughts on racism, sexism, and fandom: How to Suck Less by [personal profile] beatrice_otter.
Thinky thoughts, or how not to get stuck at an intermediate step of sucking less in fandom.

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fic rec: Political Animal (Zazu/Triton, Human AU, Political AU)
From Yuletide, recced by someone else, it's both hilarious and hot!

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nngroup: Participation Inequality
How the voices we hear are not a majority of anything.

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And finally this Good Friday:

Common Grace: Siding With Jesus: The Real Cost
Following Jesus requires we love people in costly solidarity, and requires us to expose any ideology that pretends inequality is natural or ordained by God.
I have a lot of thoughts on this, not sure if they're coherent yet.
tielan: (aussie aussie aussie)
Friday, April 7th, 2017 05:11 pm
Do remind me. Because I do believe I've forgotten.

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I find it easier to call my reps when there's a campaign going - like this one by Common Grace for #SaveSaeed. (There's also an email option for my friends who don't like talking on the phone, but I think the phone call makes a bigger difference.)

I posted my notes to the Common Grace site, and to FB, Instagram, Twitter, and Tumblr, and I'm about to put down a bigger link on Tumblr.

Common Grace is a Christian organisation in Australia with a particular focus on social justice from the perspective of the cross of Christ. I like them because they're active in faith, not just the #prayfor[insert latest atrocity here]. They have practical things for people to do, and have programs in place to support Christians in acting on social justice.

They have a Palm Sunday march in town for refugees; I was thinking of going, but then I remembered that it's the first hockey game of the season, and I might be playing both morning and afternoon games and I'll probably be wrecked as it is.

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Only a few links this week:

Common Grace: Ending The Great Australian Silence
How indigenous Australians are not listened to in the Australian church and how we can change this. Yes, the writer is still somewhat clueless of his privilege, although he has at least recognised the injustice. I appreciate him trying to redress the balance.

Susannah FullertonAre You A Librocubularist?
A small touch of hilarity in the midst of seriousness.

And a thought in the midst of chaos:
Your belief that all people are equal and deserve respect should not be conditional on whether individuals of a minority are nice to you.
tielan: (PacRim - Mako)
Friday, March 31st, 2017 09:49 pm
We're 1/4 of the way through the year. HOW DID THAT HAPPEN?

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New York Times: And Jesus said unto Paul of Ryan, "Care for my sheep." And Paul of Ryan said, "But they're so stinky and I don't want to."
A look at Jesus' teaching about healthcare.

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Electric Lit: 34 Books By Women of Color To Read in 2017
I need to have a look at this and start reading!

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Facebook: For Christians struggling with politics...
Duke Kwon is an American pastor whom I follow on Twitter, he has good thinking points about the intersection of faith and politics, and some good insights into race, being of non-white descent. Obviously he's not as well known as John Pavlovitz, but that's not a bad thing, either.

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Forward Progressives: I’m a Pro-Life, Christian, Constitutional Patriot – Which is Exactly Why I’m a Progressive by Allen Clifton
For later reading.

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Salon: Why Are Republicans So Cruel To The Poor: Paul Ryan's Profound Hypocrisy Stands For A Deeper Problem.
The more challenging and perhaps even more disturbing task is to ask why today’s conservatives feel such antipathy, disregard and hostility toward poor and other vulnerable Americans. Certainly greed and a slavish devotion to a revanchist right-wing ideology are part of the answer. But they may not be sufficient.
I had another read, more about the intersection of faith and politics, and how the "Evangelicals voted for Trump" might be true in America, but would be false in most of the rest of the world. I didn't save it, and so can't find it.

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White Friend, 50+ geeky guy, loves J-pop, K-pop, especially the girl bands, reads anime, doesn't get why ScarJo as the Major in Ghost In The Machine is whitewashing. Thankfully, some lovely woke white women are educating him, while another white male bemoans how 'precious' we've become, presumably by having to think about the feelings of non-white people?

I thought about trying to answer him, then figured, "No, I don't want to have this conversation. I don't see why I have to have this conversation. He can google it and either find the opinions of other people of Asian background who will explain it better, but I refuse to lay my guts out for someone from among his friends to stomp on. Self-protection must come first."

Look, if you want to see Ghost in the Shell, then go see it. Buy out the cinema session to push the tickets and laud ScarJo's decision to add to erasure. It's a free world and it's your money and your decision. I'm not going to see it, and I'll encourage others not to go see it because I believe in not only diversity but in the sympathetic hero-ing of non-white people.

It doesn't matter to you white people - you can see yourself everywhere. I get to see myself in Mako Mori, Helen Cho, Colleen Wing, Melinda May, Joan Watson, and maybe a handful of other characters who are defined not by racial characteristics (thereby disqualifying Constance Wu's character in 'Fresh Off The Boat') but by what they do and who they are.
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tielan: (aussie aussie aussie)
Friday, March 24th, 2017 10:47 pm
When you can barely keep up with the incoming flow of information.

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Cracked.com: What Helped Convince Me To Stop Being Hardcore Right Wing

I think the most notable part of this is that people are more likely to listen to people who think the same as them 90% of the time, and are only 'crazy' 10% of the time. The 2nd most notable part was that more people are watching than you think.

Right now, I really needed this article. It helps.

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Vice: What Nuclear War Would Look Like with an interview with a former Secretary of Defence.

I barely remember the Cold War - I was 12 when it ended. But I was an avid and advanced reader, so I read all the 80s YA stuff about nuclear war and the aftermath.

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Word Of A Woman: The Myth That The Church Alone Can And Should Take Care Of The Poor it's a simple question of mathematics. Church-goer giving could never cover the burden of the poor.

Frankly, I think that a large part of 'charity' is just 'beneficience giving', that is, you give it to feel superior to someone else, because you are better than them, because you are someone who has worked hard and is worthy and the beneficiary is someone who is not so worthy. It's basically an egotrip the largely depends on whether or not the giver is feeling generous and would like to grant a boon. And, yes, I give to charity, but it's a pittance compared to what I pay in a regular year of taxes. Taxes are unglamourous, pedestrian, and yet considerably more practical IMO - plus, they pay for things which are for the public good: roads and public transport, hospitals and schools, cops, and fieries. I might wish it wasn't paying for pollies' salaries, but, eh. Sometimes you just have to take the crap with the good.

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I can't remember where I found it, but there was this very excellent question asked by a Christian leader. The upshot of it went something like this:
The question should not be 'Who Is My Neighbour?' as though we're trying to work out if other people are worthy of our kindness or not. The question should be 'Am I A Good Neighbour?' because in God's eyes, everyone is worthy, and we are called to 'go and do likewise' to the Samaritan who was a neighbour to the man found beaten and near death on the road.

Jesus didn't say who the man beaten up was or whether he was worthy of the Good Samaritan's help; he said go and be like the Samaritan - ie. BE A GOOD NEIGHBOUR.


Them's fighting words.
tielan: (don't make me shoot you)
Friday, March 17th, 2017 08:40 pm
The Guardian: How Privatisation Is Failing Our Communities

The problem is capitalism, in which the making of money is prioritised over the needs of people. Value to society is not just in whether people can be productive; value to society is in personhood, above and beyond function.

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The Guardian: Mem Fox, Australian author (and national treasure) is held by US Immigration for allegedly having the wrong visa.

SPOILER: she had the right visa. US Immigration claimed she had the wrong one...up until they didn't.

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Newstatesman: The Handmaid's Tale Has Already Come True - Just Not For White Western Women

Basically about the baby industry: women from other countries to bear children for wealthy westerners looking to have children.

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Medium: Despair Is Not A Strategy; 15 Principles Of Hope

And also: How to keep the fires burning without burning out

(Always a good reminder.)

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Desiring God: The Anguish Of Boredom or how we no longer know how to be still and listen to eternity set in our hearts.

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Sojo: American Christianity Has Failed

If Christians refuse to help and actually use their political advocacy and opinions to further hurt refugees, immigrants, women, foreigners, minorities, the poor, the oppressed, the persecuted, the sick, the LGBTQ community — and aren’t abiding by the golden rule of loving their neighbors as themselves, then who exactly are Christians supposedly loving?

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Oh, and the best putdown you'll ever see:

ABC: State Premier Shirtfronts Federal Minister At Press Conference

The article is pretty much explanatory - read it before watching the video at the top. For an American comparison, it's basically the equivalent of a state governor letting loose on one of 45's cabinet in front of the media. It is, in a word, magical.
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tielan: (AVG - maria)
Friday, March 10th, 2017 06:07 pm
Did you know Hillary Clinton was the one who came up with the phrase "Women's Rights Are Human Rights" back in 1995? I didn't!

Why You Should Read Romance: because the romance genre and all it's sub-genres generally prioritises not only female desire, but also female goals.

Junkee: Sydney Boys' High School prefects use their privilege to echo women's voices on Why Feminism Is Important To Them.

Might have been more effective if the boys spoke about why feminism was important to them, personally, but amplifying women's voices is a start.

Also worth noting: Sydney Boys' High is a selective school - entrance exams, high intelligence/intellectuality. As such, it has a large non-white population, who would also experience racial discrimination and prejudice as part and parcel of their presence in Australia, whether born in Australia or born overseas. Consequently, these boys have more ability to perceive injustice than, say, The Kings School - a non-selective, private (tens of thousands of dollars in fees per year) school where there are more white males with money and privilege and ignorance.

ABC: Is The Church Culture Of Shame Promoting Abortion? Considers more to the situation than just "life good, killing babies bad", and contemplates changing the culture around motherhood rather than criminalising abortion.

Sarah Bessey: A Christian and a Feminist and not quite fitting either

TOR: Nevertheless, She Persisted - an anthology of works about women aiming for things beyond their reach.
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tielan: Wonder Woman (Default)
Monday, February 6th, 2017 05:42 pm
So I did watch the Superbowl and as introductions to sports go, it was definitely an interesting one to watch.

thoughts on sports, and a little stark sobriety )

Otherwise, today is easily 38C and in a house without a/c I have zero focus, which is proving fatal for my [community profile] chocolateboxcomm. I'm melting! What a world...

activist things )

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I took one of those 'political personality' tests for Australian politics and am apparently an activist egalitarian and a progressive cosmopolitan, with a squidge of ambitious saver which I probably could have told you if I'd had the language for it. :)

activist egalitarian and progressive cosmpolitan )

Does that mean I should avoid talking about tax to myself? :)

Details of the various types are here (Sydney Morning Herald)

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I suspect I'm about to fall behind in the [community profile] halfamoon prompts...
tielan: (AVG - maria)
Friday, February 3rd, 2017 11:30 pm
I'm intrigued by this. As yet, I haven't needed this, but I think there might be some followers who would find some value in an app/project like this?

the quiet place project

So far as I can tell, it's an app that helps you work through your anxiety and fears, by giving you an outlet to put it all forward anonymously, and giving you something back for it.

The one down side that I can tell is that you have to log in with an email address, so there does exist a way to trace it back to you. I'm not sure if the data is collected under your login, either, or what their privacy/security practises are - as noted, I haven't needed this, I just spotted it and was intrigued/excited by the possibilities for my friends who may struggle with the world and their interactions with it. *hugs*
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tielan: (HP - not strong)
Friday, January 27th, 2017 03:12 pm
"Don't Panic" over at [personal profile] rosefox

How to keep the fires burning without burning out.

Coping mechanisms for sanity. I know, it's getting worse, like watching stone slabs fall like dominoes.

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Why You Should Read Romance

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American 'Christianity' Has Failed
If Christians refuse to help and actually use their political advocacy and opinions to further hurt refugees, immigrants, women, foreigners, minorities, the poor, the oppressed, the persecuted, the sick, the LGBTQ community — and aren’t abiding by the golden rule of loving their neighbors as themselves, then who exactly are Christians supposedly loving?

Also: How Do Christians Today Deny or Trample On Christ?

It's good to find more Christians speaking up - doubtless these ones were always speaking up and I only just found them. But yeah.

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A Christian Feminist and not fitting in with either group.

I feel this, very strongly. I get it levelled at me a lot more because I'm a single woman, but I know there's at least one woman in my church who feels the tension between the two - she was a minister at her previous church, before she came to the one we attend now, which is Anglican and doesn't allow women to be ordained. I suspect there are quite a few married women in my church who would understand the blending of uplift and shame in both groups.
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tielan: (mr president)
Friday, January 20th, 2017 09:55 am
My mother reads my FB updates and then sends me text messages about them. Oh, mum, that's not how it works...

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[personal profile] beatrice_otter on the myth of the middle class.

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Rec: Did I rec this art? Last year in the [community profile] snowflake_challenge, I mentioned I wanted an Art Nouveau graphic of Maria Hill, wielding a weapon, and [archiveofourown.org profile] Dylan_m provided one for me!

o.O

It is BEAUTIFUL and you can see it (and kudos it) here at AO3: Rebirth.

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two links:

White Fragility: why it's so hard to talk to white people about racism

Stuff White People Do: Refuse To Shut Up And Listen When Black People Speak

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Ooh! Just found an unidentified link in my 'links list': turns out it's a "host or attend a dinner for new Australians in your area" project.

The Welcome Dinner

I've signed up for my area. Not sure if or when something will come up, but I'm pretty good at outreach.

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Anyone got questions for my March Meme? I have a couple so far...
tielan: Wonder Woman (Default)
Sunday, December 18th, 2016 11:56 am
Democracy Roll

"They saw them rolling, but nobody was hating..."

The idea of the architect was that you could walk up the hill and be on top of our representatives in government, and be able to show that this is democracy.

More than ever, right now, we need the reminder that our MPs represent us - that doesn't just mean executing our will for the country, but also that they are the example of us that the world sees.
tielan: (SGA - teyla)
Friday, December 9th, 2016 01:55 pm
Reading up on Ralph Lawrence Carr, Republican governor of Colorado back in 1942 (for Reasons). Most noted for standing up against (Democrat) FDR's institution of the Japanese Internment camps with this speech before Colorado farmers:
But the Japanese are protected by the same Constitution that protects us. An American citizen of Japanese descent has the same rights as any other citizen.... If you harm them, you must first harm me. I was brought up in small towns where I knew the shame and dishonor of race hatred. I grew to despise it because it threatened [pointing to various audience members] the happiness of you and you and you.
It's believed that speaking out cost him his political career.

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Some links I've been collecting over the last couple of weeks.

Being White Isn't An Identity, It's Just What You Ought To Be.

Lessons from Jews: What To Do About Trump

Stephen Hawking says it's a Dangerous Time When We Can Destroy The Planet But Not Escape It.

I think the thing that Hawking misses completely is that even if we could escape it, we'd only take our humanity - both the bad and the good - with us.

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A little dark humour: For POC, the non-straight, and non-Christian, America died on November 8th, 2016. For white Evangelicals, however, it was just Tuesday.

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I admit, I'm liking a lot of what John Pavlovitz has to say about Christianity generally, but American Christianity specifically.

Jesus Is Just Alt-Right: Resisting A Racist Messiah

rambling ruminations )