Wednesday, March 24

Rio Tinto Borax Trying To Hurt Working Conditions Of Workers Right Now

Via Jon @ Poetry Is For Assholes:

Remember when I posted about my fondness for the town of Boron, out in the High Desert above Los Angeles? Boron is in the news because the folks at the Borax mine have been locked out. Management refuses to bargain with the union unless they will concede seniority and almost every workplace practice. No surprise, the union couldn't negotiate on those terms so management locked them out.

America is being turned into a nation of rats and punks. People are so thoroughly narcotized by television that their highest ambition is to someday be allowed to kiss a billionaire's ass. I'm glad somebody is willing to stand for some kind of principle rather than blaming the immigrants or the poor people or unwed mothers or whoever they think needs kicking. If things go on this way soon we'll be a nation of Walmart employees who can't afford to shop at Walmart.

The normally unreadable Mike Davis wrote a pretty good piece on the lockout- Here

Update- The miners are represented by The International Longshore and Warehouse Union. I'd love to know the history of how the longshoremen ended up organizing so far from the water, but I can say that the ILWU is everything a union should be. Over the years I've had quite a few friends and a couple of family members who were ILWU and it is a real stand up, rank and file, solidarity based union. You can read about the lockout at the union's website HERE.

Jon also posted some YouTube videos--I'll direct you to his site for those.

I'm partway through the Nation article so far, and it's making me sad. :-( I don't know exactly what to do besides post the story on my blog. Please support the borax mine workers, at least by spreading the story, I guess.

Monday, March 22

Cyborg Manifesto Seems Hard

BFP's proposing book discussions, but wow, "Cyborg Manifesto" is difficult reading.

Without having tried and tried and tried at difficult non-fiction reading for the last 6-7 years, I don't think I'd get through this. I still might not.

But I wouldn't have had a chance if they'd had me reading this in mid-college, with the reading state I was at then.

(Come to think of it, they did assign me stuff this hard in college. And I did suck at finishing & understanding it. This work is really plodding for me. I can't believe some people can be at the place I'm at now by junior year of college. Wow. What amazing reading-brains.)

Saturday, March 20

I Had 2 Coats, And Didn't Offer A Cold Neighbor 1

I failed an opportunity to behave in a Christian manner Thursday.
I'm writing it here in hopes that I'll improve.

I ran into my neighbor on the sidewalk about 2 miles from home.

She said she was freezing. I had 2 coats. One of which was around my waist.

I decided not to offer her the coat on my back in case she "messed it up." I decided not to offer the cheap coat tied around my waist because it was my partner's and in case she forgot to bring it back for, say, a month. (I think classism influenced my imagination of what state I might get the coat back in.)

What the ****? I could have easily replaced that cheap coat if she'd lost it or brought it back in bad shape. Plus, she lives next door--I could swing by for my coat that night. This was basic freaking decency. (Not to mention a chance to have the "neighbors as friends" experience I keep craving.) What the ****?

Not to mention, Jesus's teachings were to offer her the nice coat.

I'm ashamed of my behavior, but hopefully, I will stop doing stupid, selfish, mean things like this.

Thursday, March 4

Stop Forced Health Insurance Purchases - Call!

Please call Senator Franken tomorrow and pressure him to vote against the Senate Bill, to vote against President Obama's suggestion for a health reform bill, and to stop asking his constituents to bug the House to promise to pass whatever comes out of the Senate.

Please ALSO call Representative Ellison, if you live in his area, and pressure him to vote, even in the much-vaunted reconciliation process, AGAINST anything with less than a Medicare-like public option. He promised us multiple times, Goddammit. Remind him.

TELL THEM TELL THEM TELL THEM that we, the majority of people in the US, can't afford to be forced to buy expensive crap health insurance--particularly when we could easily get nothing for all that money we couldn't afford to spend via denials of coverage on claims.

Tell them. PLEASE!

(Once you're done, if you have extra time, write a letter to a newspaper for the editorials page and tell everyone else how much this sucks.)

Where's Aniysah? - Call For Donations ($1+)

I have a call for small donations to a good cause.

Ms. Angeline Hassell needs to get legal help. Her daughter, Aniysah, is in the custody of the man who abused her (Ms. Hassell), and she doesn't feel like her daughter is safe in his full-time custody. Click here for background or read about it at

Ms. Hassell can't get legal assistance in the area because none of the legal aid offices she's found are taking new cases--no matter how much they feel like the case deserves their help.

Ms. Hassell doesn't want Aniysah to grow up wondering why Mom gave up on the fight and left her in the full custody of someone she felt is abusive (and suspected would abuse Aniysah). She wants to continue to fight to ensure Aniysah's safety, even though she'll have to pay for private legal assistance.

Ms. Hassel is asking for $1 donations.
My note: I'm sure more is welcome if you have it. But $1 is all she's asked for.

Here's how to donate.

Cash donations can be deposited into Chase Bank Account # 861329829
Checks can also be taken into any JP Morgan Chase Bank and checks should be made out to Angeline Hassell Legal, for deposit into Account #861329829.

Sorry it can't be done online; I hope it can work for you, though!

Recent headlines from the blog "Black and Missing but Not Forgotten:"