Smell That?

Feb. 7th, 2012 11:12 am
electricpaladin: (Default)
That's the smell of victory.

I know, I know. It's a preliminary victory, at best. I know it only applies to California, rather than the entire nation. However, it's damned good to be living in a civilized country again.

Watch

Nov. 13th, 2008 08:15 am
electricpaladin: (Default)


What's incredibly gratifying for me is that he articulates it the same way I do, only more eloquently because he's a professional talker.
electricpaladin: (The One Electronic)
Now that I'm slightly more awake, I can post my thoughts and impressions of yesterday.

I'm glad Barack Obama is our new president. He is a man of honor, integrity, and intelligence. His policies make sense. More personally, the facts of his ethnicity and economic background fill me with American pride for the first time in a long time. I got teary watching President Elect Obama's acceptance speech in the enormous election party at the Weston St. Francis in San Francisco.

I am also deeply saddened by what looks increasingly like California's decision to ban gay marriage. This is the first time that Americans have passed a law actively restricting someone's rights. We have never backslid in this way, we have only held stubbornly to the foolish ideas of yesterday or progressed more slowly than we should.

I'm frustrated with how much the latter stains the former, but I'm sure President Elect Obama will continue to impress me as time passes. And, we can't forget that he mentioned Americans, "gay and straight" in his acceptance speech. Nothing like that has ever happened before.

As I wrote last night, I spent yesterday harassing speaking to voters outside the polls in Fremont, CA. My legs and brain have mostly recovered.

My biggest impression of the "Yes" voters was that they were frighteningly childish. Every now and then I dealt with one who was polite, if usually cool. Many of the rest were... how shall I put it? Excessively brisk? Intense bordering on violent? No one ever threatened to hit me (except for an octogenarian, who actually shook her cane at me and told me what a bad person I was), but some of them walked past me as though every footstep was a punch in the face. What bothers me, however, is the substantial minority who did something that reminded me of a child or adolescent.

Some of them shouted some variant of "you shouldn't be here!" and the worst of them repeated it over and over again, like a mantra, drowning out my loud and obnoxious (/sarcasm) cries of "thank you for voting anyway and have a nice day." As though saying it over and over again made it true. Many of them went on to harass the poor poll inspector (who I had already won over with kind words, bagels, and cream cheese).

The scene that repeated itself was actually kind of funny. I'd already agreed to be much further away from the polls than I had to be, which endlessly mollified the kindly but fearsomely ignorant poll inspector. Every time a suitably angry person passed through, in half an hour out would come the poll inspector. She'd ask me to go further away, and I'd explain - very calmly - that I was already much further away than I had to be and I wasn't going to move. She'd ask me again, practically begging. I'd make acquiescent noises without agreeing to anything. She'd leave.

I'd go back to doing exactly what I had been doing.

Some people threatened to call the cops. I think they were called, because while I was on break a police van drove by, sat a little ways off, watching us, and then left. Apparently cool heads prevailed at the police station and they realized that we were perfectly polite and within our rights and the complainants were insane.

It was their childishness that bothered me. They weren't polite. They didn't even ignore me. They certainly didn't organize a counter-protest, which would have been fully within their rights. They made threats they wouldn't carry through on. They shouted about laws they didn't understand, seizing on the details the same way a petulant adolescent argues with his parents.

Is that the face of the opposition? Overgrown children who can't give up on their foolish hate and fear?

I want to shake them. I want to say "for God's sake, we only get eighty-odd years on earth, and you're ruining this person's fun. Look at him, he just wants to be with someone he loves. You're ruining his fun. What's wrong with you?"

I wish it were that simple.

I also wish I wasn't so ambivalent about yesterday's election. I want to be only happy about President Elect Obama's victory, not also sad about the victory of Proposition 8. I want to look at the future and see a place I want to live, not a place I'm unsure of.

I want to look at America and see someplace I'm proud of.
electricpaladin: (Default)
Volunteered for No on 8 today.

Standing.

I have really flat feet.

Never been so tired in my life.

Sleeping now.
electricpaladin: (Default)
Tomorrow I will be working from 6:15 AM to 8:30 PM in Fremont, CA, capturing a few last votes against Proposition 8, the proposition that aims to eliminate gay marriage in California. I'll be a team leader, helping coordinate the efforts of three other volunteers, keep them out of bad conversations with the opposition, and keep their energy level as high as I can.

Wish me luck.

In particular, my cell phone is 650 388 0423. Send me calls and text messages (especially text messages, since I probably won't be taking most calls). Have your friends send me calls and text messages to pass along to my minions. I'm sure we could use it.

Now I'm off to bake cookies for my people and to use to bribe make friends with the poll inspector...

Music

Sep. 24th, 2008 11:34 am
electricpaladin: (Hobbes)
The combination of the whole McCain-Palin ticket's use of Barracuda, the fact that my work computer has it in its iTunes library, and that it's a pretty catchy song has left me with Barracuda stuck in my head.

All day.

Also, Heart's Magic Man.

I feel like a bad Democrat.

. . .

Also, I've started a new novel. If I finish this one, it will be my second, and I'll be a double-unpublished novelist. If I don't finish it, it will be my umpteenth billion unfinished novel, and I'll just slice it into bits, throw it back into the pit, and see what comes out in a few years.

Because that's just how I roll.

I'll reflect on it at length later, but I've figured out one interesting thing:

In my first novel (A Knight of the Land) I wrote my strong side and my happy side as friends, with my dark side as the love interest. By the end of the novel, my happy side is dead (hanging around as a tree-ghost sort of dude, but dead) and my strong side gets the girl, whose darkness is never really addressed. I didn't intend it that way, but there you have it.

In my new one (tentatively titled Rat, but that's not what I'm going to call it in the long run), my darkness - my fear, resentment, and anxiety - is the title character and my strength/happiness are collapsed into one character, who is the love interest (eventually). And the girl gets the boy in the end. I didn't realize this when I started, but it's kind of screamingly true.

I kind of wonder what this means.

. . .

Two more updates:

1. I'm feeling a lot better about my anxiety. Blogging about it was good, talking with my team was good. I'm beginning to feel like I'm on some sort of two-week schedule. I get depressed on Monday, feel better on Tuesday/Wednesday, and stay that way until the following Monday. I wonder what that means, if anything.

The important thing, though, is that I'm feeling better.

2. I have awesome good news, but I can't tell anyone right away. Probably in two days or so, at the latest.
electricpaladin: (The One Electronic)
This everyone needs to know about.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/eric-schmeltzer/palins-wasilla-to-rape-vi_b_125047.html.

For the lazy, Palin's administration in Wasilla refused to pay for rape kits. That is, the rather expensive ($300 to $1200) examination that is needed to help establish whether or not a person has been raped and extract genetic evidence (semen, blood, bits of skin) that could close the case. You know who had to pay for them, then?

The victims.

I know Palin never actually did this herself, but her personal decision was resulted in women who had just been raped being told "so, we're sorry that you've just been the victim of a brutal and potentially mind- and life-destroying crime... but if you want to catch the guy who did this to you we're going to need you to cough up $300 dollars."

Or better yet, "so, we're sorry about your underage daughter, but..."

Before the Bush administration, I didn't really understand what it meant to be angry enough to spit nails, but now I do. There's a tension in my jaw, a tight sort of fullness that feels ready to come flying out. I just know if I had poison sacks, they'd be pumping out vitriol right now. In fact, this entire experience makes the idea of poison sacks very attractive.

But this? This makes me feel like spitting fire.

This is enormously amoral. I try very hard not to call political decisions evil, even when I'm tempted, because politics is such a vast and multifaceted world, and my perspective is so small. But this... I can't resist the temptation. This is evil, if nothing else is. I'm not sure even Bush has done anything so petty and callous. To consciously create a system where the organization that is supposed to be helping people instead adds insult to injury? That's just... I don't have the words for how bad it is. Terrible? Shameful? Reprehensible? Wicked?

I'm going to stick with evil.
electricpaladin: (Default)
My primary reactions to Palin's speech at the Republican convention:

If I have to hear one more moron talk about McCain's compassion, his mother-fucking war record, I'm going to do something crazy. That son of a bitch, that whore, lost any right to tout his war record, his compassion, his history as a prisoner of war and victim of torture back when he voted to permit America to torture prisoners.

What kind of hypocrite goes from being the victim of torture to voting to allow his country to perform torture? What kind of monster tries to turn his country into the same kind of creatures that harmed him? Did he wake up in the morning on the day he cast that vote and feel his shoulders aching? He can't raise his arms above his shoulders, you know. Did they hurt when they signed his name? I hope they did. I hope they burned. I hope he saw the face of the man who hurt him. If he wins this election, I hope he sees it every mother-fucking day of his presidency. I have no sympathy for him. He sold his soul for power.

That's right. I've hated John McCain since before it was cool.

Palin struck me as enormously dishonest. Her critique of Obama was largely based on traits they share, or sneaky, technically accurate but contextually dishonest references.

Her accent seems fake.

And I think her down syndrome baby is drugged. How the hell else do you get a four month old not to cry with that much going on around it?
electricpaladin: (Default)
1. Theoretical Ideal Candidate (100%)
2. Dennis Kucinich (78%)
3. Alan Augustson (78%)
4. Barack Obama (76%)
5. Joseph Biden (68%)
6. Hillary Clinton (67%)
7. Wesley Clark (66%)
8. Al Gore (66%)
9. Christopher Dodd (65%)
10. John Edwards (63%)
11. Mike Gravel (60%)
12. Bill Richardson (55%)
13. Elaine Brown (46%)
14. Ron Paul (42%)
15. Kent McManigal (38%)
16. Rudolph Giuliani (27%)
17. Mike Huckabee (26%)
18. John McCain (22%)
19. Tommy Thompson (20%)
20. Mitt Romney (19%)
21. Chuck Hagel (16%)
22. Sam Brownback (13%)
23. Newt Gingrich (12%)
24. Tom Tancredo (12%)
25. Duncan Hunter (10%)
26. Fred Thompson (9%)
27. Jim Gilmore (7%)
electricpaladin: (Firefly)
That I made it to the polling place, only to discover that this woman who looked suspiciously like Abby had arranged it to be her own personal audience, and was giving a Republican speech right before she would let anyone vote. I complained, which gave everyone else the impetus to shut her up. She defiantly flashed her name tag at me, clearing up any lingering suspicion that she was actually Abby - her name was Anierenan, or something like that.

The dream also involved loosing my voting guide/cheat sheet, but then finding it in my bag, under my knitting.

. . .

The dream is telling me that you should all vote. So vote. And watch out for Anierenan.
electricpaladin: (Holy Knight)
I have come to an important - albeit completely non-serious - realization.

America is the evil empire, and the world is in deep shit.

Consider it thusly: we have a charismatic moron for a leader, but he is manipulated by shadowy manipulator types, as personified by his mysterious and grumpy second-in-command; we are expansionist, attempting to spread our hegemony, if not our direct rule, all over the globe; our own society is deeply unjust, with a definite elite and a definite underclass, and increasingly little upwards mobility; and we're religious! We're an evil empire dominated by a triumphalist religion!

Does anyone see where I'm going?

And to top it all off, our machines run on death. That's what gasoline is, liquid death. Dinosaurs and their ecosystem died, and the biomatter got squashed and heated and turned into gasoline.

All we need now is for gasoline burning engines to start moaning in pain or for Bush to reveal that the military has a new recipe for supersoldiers that involves dunking men in tanks of gas for several months to give them magic powers, and that's it. It's all over, folks. You're living in the United States of Mordor now.

[Anyone who takes this post seriously deserves what they get.]
electricpaladin: (Holy Knight)
So... a real entry coming soon, I promise, but this is worth reporting:

Thursday, Howard Dean came to my Borders. He was in the Politics & Government section, feigning illness at books praising Karl Rove. He signed a copy of his book for me, and I bought it. We shook hands and talked a while. It must be lonely being famous, with everyone who meets you becoming suddenly incapable of thinking of anything interesting to say.

He was nice, warm. He joked with his aides.

A real entry is coming. Really.

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