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A Wound That Does Not Heal

October 14, 2017

I haven’t fully returned to this web log yet since my dad died and even a little before then. At first it was because I felt like my life was complete and now because a part of me is gone and I don’t think that I can ever fill in that hole in my life entirely. My dad was my hero and who I aspired to be like, even if I fall way below his example. I know that’s a trite thing to say, but it’s very much true. I always felt that my world was secure with him around. I knew in my head that there would come a day when I wouldn’t have him in my life, but I never imagined it would be so soon or so suddenly.

I’m not really a religious person. Part of me believes there’s more to life after death than we know…but the hitch is you sort of have to die to know it. However, I want to honor his memory and all he sacrificed for me and my brother. Trouble is I don’t know if I’m strong enough to do it. Most days I’m just barely holding it together. His loss completely shattered my identity of who I am and my place in the world. I guess it was needed? In a way? But to do it in this way is a travesty of the highest regard.

I want say I’m fighting the good fight and honoring him, but I’m not. I’m anxious, I’m sad, I get random bouts of depression and anxiety. I’ve retreated so much since then and before his death where it all started to collapse. My dad died on June 22nd and wasn’t buried until June 30th. My family asked me how I wanted to celebrate my birthday and I honestly couldn’t muster the strength to care. I didn’t even want to celebrate it and would’ve been happy just doing nothing.

The intervening months have been one step forward and thirty steps back. I guess that I’m not a blithering idiot and curled up in the corner is a success. I will be alright and I am moving on as best as I can, but some days things do not feel worth it. Sad thing is I know my dad would probably feel like yelling at me for not fighting my hardest, but I think he’d understand and urge me to keep pushing forward in my life.

Soo…I guess I’ll start updating more often. Or try to. I know I’ve been promising myself and my…audience that for years now, but I think I’ll stick to it. Just put one letter in front of the other and hope it works out. I do love web logging, even if no one ever reads this shit. Hopefully it makes an impression on some people.

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Patriotism Is The New Old Gay Marriage

September 25, 2017

These days it seems as if patriotism is a commodity like any other: bought and sold on the whim of whomever is selling it. I typically consider those people Nationalists, not Patriots. However, I feel that the general public has no clue what either is and are really just nationalists cloaking themselves in the veil of patriotism so I figured I would post this helpful guide on the topic for the confused.

A patriot is…

Someone who will defend their country from enemies foreign and domestic. They will see the truth that their country is imperfect and will try to fix or mend any issues that crop up. Most of the time they’ll believe in the ideals of their country and will uphold them without praise or desire for the spotlight. They will also break bad laws and blow the whistle on the crimes of others no matter their rank within the society–risking their freedom or lives to defend its ideals.

A nationalist is…

A person that sees their society as the pinnacle of perfection and will turn on those that disagree in the most violent of fashions either verbal of physically. They will call themselves a patriot, but only is as much it benefits them. At the end of the day, they do not care undesirable segments of the country in which they live. Everything must benefit them and if someone sees something wrong then they being un-patriotic. It’s when their reality versus actual reality collides that violent conflict will occur.

 

There’s more that I’m missing from both, but overall those are the type of people that exemplify the terms. Now, are you really a patriot or are you just a nationalist trying to say that you’re a patriot? I see a lot of talk of ‘standing for our national anthem’ and ‘saluting the flag’, but really, those are wedge issues designed to separate people. It’s an asinine argument because these are just things and saying that their protest is about disrespecting anything is missing the point of why the protest is happening in the first place.

Now, generally I think the ‘Police target African Americans disproportionately’ argument is largely media driven. However, the police are targeting us. You. Me. Everyone. If they think they can get away with it they will try it. That’s due to the police becoming militarized and lowering their standards at the same time. It’d be a lot like if our military lowered its standards any further and gave them free reign to bully anyone in sight. They’re gonna do it. Not all, but definitely a better than average percentage would, because that’s why they signed up in the first place.

Where do I stand? Well, as someone that long ago stopped standing for the pledge…well, I fully support the right not to stand. It’s all propaganda in the first place and is starting to feel way too fascist for my tastes. Just remember: freedom isn’t free. It costs folks like you and me. It’s also a buck o’ five.

Dyed In The Wool Liberal

August 29, 2017

I’ve been called a ‘dyed in the wool liberal’ which, to me, feels like Republicanese short-hand for ‘asshole’. While I’ll admit that I’m left-leaning on a lot of issues from the separation of church and state to funding for Planned Parenthood. I think the only choice is to give the most choices to someone unless they prove otherwise incapable of being responsible for those choices. Or intrude on someone else’s freedom. However, I have many right-leaning views: I think we should protect the environment and that the little guy gets dicked over by corporations too often.

What? You mean those are no longer conservative values? Well…shiiiit. Yeah, Republicans used to be for small businesses. Now they just use them as a shield to cover awful policies. And conserving the environment instead of drill baby, drill. It seems that in this country today that to be a conservative you have to buy into the Jesus story, disbelieve all science unless it conforms to your values, support the NRA, and in general support corporations as ‘job creators’ (pbut) when really what corporations support is neo-feudalism. Don’t be fooled, even Apple buys into this act. But think different!

However, to be a liberal these days is to buy into white privilege which I don’t completely think is a thing except in very narrow circumstances, support feminism and the ‘believe the victim’ mentality of justice which is not what our system is based on and the Patriarchy which, in my opinion, is Alex Jones level type of thinking, and generally buy into identity politics. So you see my dilemma. I despise both camps. Oh, I identity as liberal. Guilty on that part, but I don’t easily fall for stuff.

My dad did instill in me and my brother the idea of critical thinking. To always challenge whatever anyone tells you against what you think. He was a stubborn conservative to the end, but he didn’t buy wholly into today’s conservatism. He actually had some pretty left leaning views in some spots and in others some pretty repugnant views, in my opinion. However, he was honest about them to a fault and would let you know it.

I respected him immensely and the way I choose to honor him is in my healthy dose of skepticism. I generally think if everyone’s telling you something without evidence that they’re most likely parroting views they’ve bought wholesale into. Me, I don’t. ┬áThe police brutality stuff is a real gray area. Saying that blacks are affected more is a lie that’s mostly media driven. In fact, Native Americans are killed and brutalized more by police. In general I think the police are hired thugs and it affects every community, black, white, Asian, Hispanic, all of them. The racial division stuff is just that: division and a media driven narrative to keep people ignorant of what’s really going on.

So, yeah, I’m a liberal. I feel no shame in it and anyone trying to shame anyone for their political beliefs can go fuck off. Unless those political beliefs are fascist or Nazism…then kindly go fuck yourself with a potato peeler. Otherwise, party on. I don’t hate anyone. I haven’t hated anyone since 2012 and they’re dead. If we happen to disagree politically just see it for what it is: a disagreement politically. This does not mean I think you’re an awful person. You just support awful policy in my view. We all make mistakes and I’ve in the past had my beliefs questioned when I was wrong and it will continue to happen.

 

My Dad Is Gone

June 26, 2017

Last Thursday my dad left this world. He’d been fighting his illness and his stroke for so long that I guess he just couldn’t anymore. I’m devastated beyond words and every day that passes hurts a little less, but there’s also a lot of tears. He is a good man. An honorable man. An honest man. Everyone that ever met him never had a bad word to say about him. He had no life insurance and planned to get it soon, but he never got to get to that point. Life catches up with us and we leave it with unfinished plans and desires. 

I setup a gofundme page for him at this link for any and all donations. We’re currently up to about 2200 counting this and offline donations. So please, please help my father with this one last task. Thank you.

Hello, We’re From Big Brother And We’re Here To Install Your Modem

June 15, 2017

One of the weirder aspects of the internet today is how willingly we give up our personal information just for access. I say ‘we’ because I’m guilty of this as well. It’s sort of disturbing how in five boxes you will tell someone these intimate details about yourself and your life. And why? To put yourself out there? Reconnect with old friends? Yikes. Humanity’s really set a low threshold for giving up info. Your cell phone can be accessed by anyone and they can listen and see what you’re doing. We don’t even trust the government to handle the sort of info we give private companies and yet we all blithely do it every day.

When Orwell was writing 1984 I think he missed the boat on what to warn us against and it’s not a heavy-handed government that tries to rule our lives. I think he should have written about our indifference to being spied on and how, as long as it’s new and sounds beneficial, we’ll gladly give up our privacy. Big Brother would’ve had an orgasm that stretched to the moon if they were real and could see us today. We have targeted adverts to entice us into buying shit we don’t need and websites that treat our private life as a product. And up on Capitol Hill, a government that gets bribed into allowing them to use our browser history as a monetary asset.

I’m saying you’re being fucked here. I’m being fucked. You’re being fucked. We’re all being fucked. And not in some pleasant way but in a way that treats you as just a number on a spreadsheet. You’re barely a blip on their bottom line. As long as you’re now a product then great! And don’t forget to buy your new 70-inch ultra 5K tv that has a camera built in for added feedback.

Sorry this is kind of a depressing topic, but boy…do I feel a lot better.

My Dad Has Cancer

May 22, 2017

So…as the title says: he acquired it by taking his anti-rejection meds. Those lovely little pills that keep the white blood cells at bay. I’m not dealing with it too well and he’s certainly not dealing with it well, either. Especially now that he’s in the hospital because he was running a high-ish fever the day after his bone biopsy. It feels like a slow, steady march to treatment. He’s been dealing with the symptoms for about 2 months. He’s got the back pain that seems associated with lymphoma. I’m not sure if that means it’s late stage or if this is the beginning of the cancer. He had had a CT last August for an unrelated issue and nothing was there. Me and my family are hoping this is just early enough.

So many unanswered questions here. the hospital keeps pumping him full of percocet and he’s feeling loopy and having trouble remembering things. It’s awful seeing him like this. He’s my father. I guess I never let go of my father being my hero. He’s always been there for me and when the chips are down, he always had a plan.All I can do now is hope they start treatment soon and that it’s not too late. This wait, though, and the unknowns…awful awful. I never knew that it was this slow of a process.

All I can do is hope now. I hope, I hope, I hope.

A Confessional

March 2, 2017

“You ever try to talk to a corpse? It’s boring!” – Jack Goodman, An American Werewolf In London

I have a confession to make: for a long time…maybe about 8 months or so I watched…anti-SJW youtubers…yep. That one. And that one too. Oh and him too. To be honest, their views to align with my own: I generally find any group with a name annoying, including my fellow Atheists. I find gender pronoun shit to be bullshit, and I find university campuses are churning out witless assholes on both sides of the aisle, and that racism against whites is a thing and not this whole, “Racism is privilege plus power,” bullshit. It’s putting lipstick on a pig and justifying horrible behavior just on the basis of skin color…which is the basis of racism. Now, if you want to get into a deeper discussion of it with me then great. But the point is that I don’t like the SJW crowd. Not because I don’t believe in social justice–I do. I just don’t believe it’s what they think it is.

This is a tangent beside the point. I think the bridge too far for me with this is when some openly advocated for Trump’s presidency. Whatever you think of Hillary Clinton, she would have at least not been as awful as Trump. Even before that I was like, “Here’s the daily wankfest.” I think what really started doing it for me is how mono-subject they were becoming and consequently boring. You can only spout so much about this subject before it becomes an exercise in frustration.

“I get it. We know. These people are bad and don’t trust them.”

Hooboy…glad that phase is over. Never. Again. I can see the appeal but it is not for me. All it does is create this constant state of pressure with no release. It’s like a story with no ending. No climax. No…anything. Just a continuation of the same boring, tired arguments. I think that’s when I finally snapped and got tired of listening to these people. I enjoy social commentary and they were being ballsy enough to counter the current narrative that does limit free speech and free exercise of ideas. But whatever value these people have in their commentary doesn’t outweigh the fact that they’re just fucking boring people. I decided I didn’t want to become perpetually angry and annoyed at bullshit.

And it is bullshit. While the actions of the politically aggressive will always roll downhill because that’s what bullshit tends to do, none of the stuff they were commenting on affected my life one iota. If there’s a signal and a noise, supposedly, then these people are definitely the noise. I’m glad I got the hell out of that cycle and definitely glad that my views have mellowed out a bit from that time of perpetual outrage. It’s tiring and takes way more time to be in that frame of mind than it could to…say…paint a picture. Or take a picture or do something productive.

This is why I’m re-committing myself to putting stuff out into the world and creating rather than destroying. Destruction is easy, as these people have clearly shown, but I feel they’re lonely and bereft of a fulfilling life. I could be wrong, but when you’re updating a lot to constantly bitch about issues and people that do not affect your life that maybe you’re the one that needs to get over it. Expand. Evolve. Change. In my time watching them I never got the sense that they would ever change or become different people. No, instead it’s just the constant circle-jerk.

I’m thankful that bridge too far came about or else I’d probably still be listening to their stuff and not cringing every time I hear their shit. Now I just go to great lengths to avoid it and just focus on entertainment there and hopefully everyone else does the same. A Nightmare on Elm Street did have a salient message to give: the only power something has is the power that we give it. If we choose to ignore it then it ceases to be and ceases to affect our lives. Granted, this isn’t to say if someone has an AK-47 that you should ignore that, however, if you stop focusing on the noise then it ceases to have power over you and your life. This is how I’m viewing it. Just ignore them and your life will improve.

That goes for both camps of the debate. I now know why I don’t join groups or cliques. God…you’d think I’d listen to myself a lot more by now.

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