What I Liked This Week: 2/23/13

Hello fellow romantics. First, I apologize for failing to slap you with a post earlier this week. There’s something in the crucible but I wasn’t able to give it the time it deserves to get it up to snuff and yet get my necessary minimum of sleep this week.

Here’s what I liked this week. As is often the case, I didn’t like a lot of it. Exactly.

  • This article from Salon, about how cuts in programs meant to protect our most vulnerable citizens from wage abuses (or the full disbanding of said programs), is leaving more of your fellow American citizens scrambling to get paid for their work. I didn’t like this. This is unconscionable, and it’s a searing reminder of just how wrongheaded and cruel it is to be prioritizing budget cuts and advocating for a smaller government at a time when so many of our citizens are still struggling. Thanks to Jonathan Mills for linking via Twitter.
  • This story, about a Texas city that plans on charging people for the cost of first responders when they get into an auto accident. Because you’re on your fucking own. I don’t like this. It’s almost as bad as making it illegal to feed homeless people. Give us your tired, and your poor, and your hungry, right? Oh, but not that many of your hungry. I loathe this. How do these awful things even become ideas? Well…
  • This article by Paul Buchheit, titled “5 Signs Extreme Wealth Deadens the ‘Empathy’ and ‘Honesty’ Parts of the Brain.” I don’t like this topic (because it’s true, and has deadly consequences) but I like that Mr. Buchheit provides links to scientific studies about it, and then focuses most of his article on evidence and consequences. This is what we are contending with. It accomplished little when you rage against the masters of the machine, fellow furious friends. We have to change the minds of the masters of the machine. Additionally, this MUST be done peaceably. That’s why you won’t see me write a word analyzing the actions of someone like Christopher Dorner.
  • This brilliant video poem, in which a bunch of talented people collaborate as adults to tell (raw) stories about when they were bullied as children, and how it has affected them throughout their lives. That description doesn’t do it justice. I have been bullied and, to be honest, I was a bully a few times during my childhood. This video brought some complicated feelings to the surface when I watched it. Which is fine, because I want to feel empathy and I want honesty. Too often, too many of us miss empathy and honesty, when we shy from our own pain. This is understandable, but we should also understand that pain shied away from doesn’t go away. It curdles and it poisons, over time, if you continue to ignore it. And then, one day, maybe, it takes you over completely. Maybe this is where bullies come from in the first place, huh? If you click on any of these links, click this one.
  • This in-depth Vanity Fair article on the making of Pulp Fiction. Enthralling read that was passed around quite a bit this week already. Definitely worth a read for artists, and/or anyone interested in seeing just how much alchemy has to go right for such a brilliant achievement as this to see the light and day and then flourish.
  • It rained fire on the sun. Remember this video, and think of the sheer awesome power of the universe, and the relative insignificance of man, the next time you’re upset by a person or incident that really, really doesn’t matter. Q: Can you believe so-and-so said this and that? A: Can you believe it rained fire on the sun? Crazy, right?!

Have a good week. Hit me up anytime. Get angry and speak up.

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