Archive for Freedom

It almost feel traitorous when I say that 9/11 annoys me.

Posted in Life, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 11, 2012 by urbannight

A nation of pride was turned into a nation of hate.

9/11 makes me want to hide and hibernate.  I don’t want to hear or see all the news articles.   All the stuff that happens on this date pisses me off more every year.

While I remember the shock when it happened, the disbelief.  Everyone pulled out every t.v. that could be found at work.  It was like the Challenger all over again.  The feeling in the pit of your stomach was just the same.  The sense of walking through a cloud of unreality.  Even though I am old enough to have had that same experience with the Space Shuttle Challenger, and the experience felt exactly like it, it didn’t cushion the blow in any way.  In the following weeks it felt unreal.  But in the months that followed, the sense if disbelief gave way to a sense of horror at what our own government was going to do in response. 

To this day, 9/11 isn’t about the people who were lost.  It is about what those who were left have lost.

To me, 9/11 represents the day America gave up its ideals of freedom.  It’s the day the government started going backwards.  It is the day the government started doing thing that we fought a war with England in order to stop.  It is the most anti-American date in the year.  The antithesis of the Fourth of July.

It is the day that America, as a nation, became a huge hypocrite on a grand scale.  It is the day that people started to embrace isolationism and reject diversity.  It is the day that everything America claims to believe in became a lie.

Protest, the right to gather and express opinions that were contrary to what the government believed, one of the most American forms of patriotism and expression and idealism became something that people labeled Unpatriotic.

The things that go on in airports now are proof that the terrorist won and we lost.  Every person who says it is better to give up freedom for a perception of safety is proof that terror won the day on 9/11.

I know that all these things didn’t happen on that one day.  But it was the response to that day, the aftermath, the culminating climax of 9/11 that led this nation to do the most un-American things and people turned away from American ideals and lose all sense of what America was really about. 

The kids who were born after 9/11 will never know the America I knew.  They will never know what American Freedom really meant.  The police have become more like para-military units.  We have taken the first steps into a police state with government control of our more and more of our daily lives.  And if the Republicans win in this election it will just go even farther as they determine who can and cannot marry, who can and can’t have access to the American dream, and who can and cannot control the reproductive functions of this country.

I can’t decide if we are turning into 1984 or a Brave New World or even The Handmaiden’s Tale.  Maybe some bizarre blend of all three.  Either way, we are less than we once were and the children growing up with this as normal will never really know what they lost.  All they will know is a growing dystopian version of America and they will be part of that conditioning and world view.

Is the Economy or are Women’s Issues more important? A Changing Rhetoric.

Posted in Economics, Economy, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 22, 2012 by urbannight

People who are pro-life had been using pro-abortion instead of pro-choice in order to change the rhetoric of the debate.  To sensationalize it more.

Okay, fine.

In that case, I’ll change it too.

Instead of pro-life, I’ll use:

Anti-choice

Anti-freedom

Pro-chattel

Pro-brood mare

Anti-woman

Misogynistic

Pro-male dominance

Pro-male superiority

Anti-self determination (if you female)

People are saying the focus should remain on the economy and that this is a distraction issue.

I disagree.  The economy goes up and down and responds to WAY to many world-wide variables and, in the end, the government can only do so much in response to it.  To truly have any governmental influence on the economy, the government will need to have more influence and control in the business world than the business world wants to allow. 

On the other hand, women’s right and freedoms in a male dominant society will ALWAYS be an issue and far more under the influence of government policy than the economy will ever be.  Therefore, it truly is a more vital and pertinent issue for us than just the economy and jobs. 

And if you do not think we are still in a male dominated society, I think the last year couple of years have reminded us that have gotten complacent.  We thought we came a long way even if we didn’t have true pay equality yet.  But the GOP is clearly trying to push us back and restore more male control of the most fundamental female issues.  We need to start fighting back or we will continue to lose ground.

A group of men should not be controlling women’s reproductive rights.  By letting them say ‘no abortions’ is sending a message that a person who doesn’t exist is more important than a woman who already exists.  It says a woman has no value beyond her ability to make babies.  It says that it’s okay for women to risk death on the change that another life might be created.  It says that it is okay to for people to have children they don’t want or for whom they can’t provide.  In a world where rapists have successfully sued for visitation rights, they want to force women to have babies that may force them into keeping contact with the person who raped them.

This is unacceptable.  Women should have the right to choose.  They should have the right of self-determination.  People who base their pro-‘life’ beliefs on religious believes should NOT be forcing that religious based view on the rest of society.

The Lie of Home Ownership and other myths of the Supremacy of Modern American Life.

Posted in Apartments, Economy, Life, Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 9, 2012 by urbannight

One of the hallmarks of the ‘American Dream’ is home ownership. The phrase “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” originally meant life, liberty and the pursuit of property. (Or so we were taught in my college government course)

But I would argue that it is a myth. It isn’t really true.

Lets say you buy a house and over the years you get it paid off early. So now you feel it is truly yours and you no longer have to pay the bank. You have a deed that states that house and bit of dirt it sits on is your personal property. You still have to pay the government to actually have the right to own it. If you don’t, the government can seize it. Even thought you OWN it. It used to be that the local government could seize it to put a road through as well. But that law has changed. Now they can seize it if they want to build a mall there or if they want to put in a country club.

Ultimately, this means you DON’T really own anything. Despite what you paid to get that piece of paper saying you own it. At least you got a tax break on it. Oh wait, no. Romney wants to take that away. So you will no longer get that deductible on your taxes, which is about the only reason, anymore, that they say ‘owning’ is better than renting. 

At least if you rent, Renters insurance is less costly than home owners insurance and if you need something fixed, you just call maintenance and you don’t end up with a repair bill. 

Seems to me, renting is now the way to go.

Basically, home ownership is more like having a feudal estate.  You don’t ‘own’ the land, it is loaned to you by the government for you to manage for them.  And then you send in a portion of what you earn from the land in ‘taxes’ to the king.  Only people don’t usually ‘work’ a lot that a house sits on for income.  So you pay income taxes on the work you DO do and then you pay property taxes from the same work income. 

Wow.   I think those feudal landowners’ probably had it better.  They only paid one tax.  They just had to fight for their lord when war happened.  Oh yeah, we do that too.  Sometimes through volunteer service and sometimes through a draft.  And, sometimes, people who volunteered and served their term of service are not allowed to leave when their time is over.  So maybe they were still better off back then.

At least we have better medical treatment.  Although, for an industrialized, first world nation, we have the worst rates for easily prevented death from asthma.  We also have a strangely high infant mortality rate from other preventable deaths (from conditions that should have been preventable).  This is because medical costs are so high that people don’t go to the doctor for things that don’t look, seem, or sound serious at the moment.  Not like other industrialized countries with nationalized health care and people can go to the doctor for things more often without going into bankruptcy (even thought many people who lose everything because of medical dept actually have health insurance).  So while we have better medical treatment it is too costly for people to access it.  Lets call that a null.  So feudal people are still better off.

The working conditions were not great.  At least we have that better.  Well, if you can find a job.  And if it has a good health package.  And if it has high enough wages.  Even all those added together, we actually work more days a year, have less days off.  So we have better tools and equipment and work conditions but we work more and have less time for ourselves.  I might call that a wash too.

I guess the freedom to live our lives the way we want and no one telling us how to live.  Nope. We don’t even have that.  The GOP is trying to turn back the clock on women’s reproductive rights and religious people are trying to tell people who they cannot marry.  Which is a bit a change from the king being able to order certain knights or lords or marry their daughters to other certain knights or lords.  Still, it is one person dictating who can or cannot marry. 

Finally, I’ve found one thing in which we have going better for us than in feudal times.  We live longer.  That’s about it.