The Logical Conclusion of (some types of) Critical Theory [Scope]

I have a feeling that this post is going to raise some eyebrows and heat up some tempers, so let me state up front:

This is by no means a definitive account of ANYTHING.  I am open to criticism.  Please, give me feedback, as this is my own theory and by no means a reflection of all my beliefs.

Phew.  I dislike disclaimers, but the internetz require them sometimes.

Sociology is, at its core, an objective discipline that strives to describe and collect data regarding the inherently subjective experience of social interactions within a given culture.  In its purest form, Sociology is akin to the "hard" sciences like Biology and Physics, following the scientific method by requiring the testing of hypotheses and the replication of results under similar conditions.  Theories arise in Sociology that are quickly disproved, just like in any other science, and those that do withstand the test of time are rightly brought into question as our understanding of society evolves and changes.

While intellectually valuable, Sociology, like other hard sciences, needs a branch dedicated to applying itself to the issues it tackles.  Over the years, this branch has spawned multiple movements working towards equality in society including certain forms of Feminism, parts of the GLBTQ movement, and has raised awareness regarding continuing racial, gender, and socioeconomic disparities.  Most recently, Sociology has given rise to the field of Critical Theory, which strives to look at every social interaction through the sociological lens, thus providing constant feedback and an informal platform for dialectic exchanges.

When formalized, Critical Theory observes the situations of many different types of people and assigns them an amount of privilege as dictated by their social location.  A good representation of this is given by Patricia Hill Collins in her essays on the intersection of different social oppressions.  She states that we all have a location within an oppressive "matrix" (dubbed the Matrix of Oppression) that gives every individual a unique level of privilege, and conversely a unique oppressed status, thus making comparisons of oppression irrelevant and unhelpful to the continued objectification of oppression as it relates to a person's experience.



I've been absolutely slammed at work the last couple days building a social networking cluster for my company.  Oy.  Sometimes the things that SHOULD work together just don't.  I'm following the Phaedrus method as pioneered in the book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, which states that when you are put up against a roadblock, step back and readjust your perspective.  Perfect!

Anyway, hopefully tomorrow I'll have time to write a post about the logical conclusions of sociological reasoning.  It's a gem.

Makers: Yesterday Meets Tomorrow [Social Change]

In the late 1950s and early '60s, young people everywhere began to get fed up with the lifestyle of their parents' generation, and the counterculture was born.  We all know about the great legacies championed by these young people (the civil rights movement, environmental reform, war protests, art, music, drugs) and the avenues they opened up for us today.

Something we tend to forget is that the counterculture generation was perhaps the last to grow up learning a set of valuable skills most of us today never really think about anymore, things like woodworking, baking (from scratch!), sewing, metalworking, and general craftsmanship.  It's weird to imagine this, but the consumer-goods boom really only started around the time the counterculture was forming, and it was against this consumerism (and many, many other factors) that the counterculture formed its governing principles.

Cue the 21st century.  We were thrown into the "future" with promises of flying cars, Star Trek style interactive computers, and faster-than-light travel.  None of these really panned out (YET.  I'm still waiting for my jetpack), but in the race to innovate, companies have used lower and lower quality materials, QC procedures, and generally have lowered the standards of manufacture while increasing the price with the justification that as commodities, they are obliged to charge what the consumer is willing to pay.

And this place we're in now, where technology is largely proprietary and owned not by the community but by private corporations, is precisely the location from which the counterculture was trying to push us away.  Unfortunately for that philosophy of quality-above-all-else, the counterculture has largely assimilated itself into the mainstream, and its members have families, jobs, mortgages, and practical problems of their own, seemingly erasing the possibility of accomplishing this goal.

News, news, and a solicitation

What The Fuck. Last week, the Supreme Court of the United States of [Corporate Free Speech] decided that Corporations are people too, and thus they are allowed the same right to free speech as individuals, thus making laws that limit their spending on political campaigns and political advertising unconstitutional.

John McCain sipping a thirst-quenching Coca-Cola, Sarah Palin human-hunting with a .50 caliber Barrett rifle.

What the fuck have we become?  This has got to be closest to the "jumping-the-shark" moment in this country since the institutionalization of slavery.  Basically, the court has decided that corporations don't have enough legal protections and thus we should give them our first-born as payment.

Oy.  Sorry for the inaccuracy and hyperbole, but I'm pretty pissed.  Let's see what it would cost to move to Canada...


My wonderful, thoughtful, talented sister Rachel will be contributing to the blog in the near-future!  I have instituted a no-edit policy, which means that whatever she writes I will keep my hands off of entirely!  This is in the interest of exploring the creation of a small, individually-autonomous community in which each person's beliefs are as important as the next.


I am looking for authors!  I want thinkers, writers, photographers, anyone, really!  This is a space for sharing ideas and beauty and your deepest darkest secrets (if thats what you want to talk about).  There are no rules, except that the content be original and "future-seeking."  The interpretation of that is up to you.

So, if you want to write, just drop me a line, leave a comment, etc.  Hope to hear back from some of you!

test post to twitter

Right now I'm setting this blog up to go straight to twitter.  Let's see if it works.  Twitter witter itter tter ter er r re ret rett retti rettiw rettiwT


A little excerpt by a very obscure author [excerpt]

I wanted to share this little bit from a story someone near and dear to me wrote about 3 months ago:

14th Street

Electric sentries hold their small orange-bright domains open for the clean masses to pass through on their way to forget their sorrows.  Green dresses flutter by worn by blondes, all so sure they are the only ones to look that particular way tonight.  I am relieved to find that despite the repetition, each person manages to carry herself with autoamory, eking out a smile for her clones.

No one looks at me.  They look through me, seeing a plaid shirt, a pint of mediocre beer, and the tired insecurity of a person whose thoughts are constantly elsewhere.  I smile.  I lie.  The sentries stand tall in amused silence, never judging but providing no support for shaky hands and sweaty brow.  This is my fight, my life.  Not a one will malfunction tonight, not a one will hand me the opportunity I need to escape in embarrassed darkness into the quiet street, cloaking myself in the smoke of past suffering and current pain.

There is no room for introspection here, only big blue eyes, half-revealed breasts in the streetlights, and the cheesy excuses made in order to utter words to bodies made uncomfortable by the language of my smile and face.  There is no success tonight.  No nakedness and heavy breathing barely audible beneath iPod soundtracks.  No new friends who wish only for closeness and whose desire is masked by morals and fear.  Tonight, there is only the discovery that I can be heard over the thousands of angry bees and the constant drone of bass, and of love for all people, no matter how small, dishonest, or beautiful.  Tonight is a time for exploring the dark, dusty corridors of personhood, the entryway to humanity, the gateway drug of health.


I got nothin' today.  so here's this:

The Culture of Most Harm [Scope]

Sometimes, an idea pops into your head so suddenly that you wonder if someone didn't put it there.  We call these thoughts epiphanies, and they have led to some of the greatest discoveries of all time.  It's as if our instincts, when coupled to a conscious motivation in a specific and delicate manner can form new ways of thinking without our direct input.

The whole concept is pretty bizarre, but perhaps more bizarre is what I just experienced while reading Beyond Civilization by Daniel Quinn (Yes, I'm on a Quinn kick this week).  Some of Quinn's ideas are of that perfect, epiphany-esque quality and must have given him great joy and exhilaration during their creation.  What's more amazing is how perfectly these ideas resonate in my own brain.  In this case, someone HAS put this idea in my head, very directly via the written word, and it feels as if I've been thinking it for years and years.

Featured Blog of the Week: Hoostown [Featured Blog]

"What a [cutting-edge] piece of [art]" is the greeting/subtitle on this witty, fun, and utterly nerdy (in a good way!) blog.  Hoostown chronicles the exploits of a Charlottesville, VA-to-Houston, TX transplant (those in the know will not understand the meaning of the title) in the pursuit of a Masters in Fine Arts.

More importantly, it's written by a very dear friend of mine, sister of my BESTBEST friend, and herself a BEST friend (um, that's a bit arbitrary, but i can only have one BESTBEST).  We grew up in each other's lives and I started reading the blog out of a desire to keep in touch.

However, the familial focus ends there.  I CONTINUE reading because this shit is hysterical:
This Just In
Domestic Situation
Thao and the Get Down Stay Down (I went to school with 2 of these people)

So anyway, I encourage you to read this excellently written, hysterical, always grammatically correct blog.

The Rise and Fall of... [Scope]

If the world is saved, it will not be by old minds with new programs but by new minds with no programs at all.
-Daniel Quinn, Beyond Civilization
Today on the train I had a bizarre moment where I burst out laughing, burgeoning with energy over the clear reality that our society is much further gone than we think it is.  The irony of this thought as I rode to a 40-hour-week job was just too much.  The excitement I experienced was in reaction to the confirmation of a feeling I've had for some time now, that our society is ultimately unsustainable, and continues to worsen.  Mondays can do that to a person, huh?

For those of you who have read his other books, the above quote from Daniel Quinn (Ishmael, The Story of B, My Ishmael) is somewhat old-hat.  For those of you who have not, it may not make a whole lot of sense, so let's break it down quickly:

Quinn's M.O. is the salvation of humanity through a radical paradigm shift away from civilization as we know it and towards something more resembling tribalism (don't knock it until you've read it!).  Here he is describing the difference between vision (unified cultural memes that we look back at and declare, "there's no other way that history could have gone!") and programs (solutions that work to change the flow of vision by impeding its progress or diverting resources).

What he's saying here is that programs, while helpful in a way similar to the paramedic at the scene of an accident, are no replacement for a unified cultural infrastructure (analogy:  hospital with its resources and doctors and nurses and so forth).  What we need to "change the world" is a new Vision, a unified idea of what it means to be Humanity, NOT a series of better-funded or more-radical programs whose stated goal is to fix social ills.  Another way of saying it is, we need to create a new future, not fix an old one.

That's actually not ALL that radical an idea, but Quinn is entirely correct, we will need new minds, or at least changed minds.

1951 Silvertone 1342 Amplifier [Build]

Today, I took apart the guitar amplifier I bought last month.  It's a 1951 Silvertone, model 1342, that I honestly believe belongs in a museum.  So, because I am who I am, I took it apart!

The neat thing is that there is no schematic of this amp online, no real information on it other than anecdotal stuff by old-timers and collectors.  For the most part, it has fallen through the cracks in history and into my hands via a very fun, very interesting older gentleman by the name of Dash who lives in the east village, still bikes around at the spry age of 60-something, and invited me to jam with him whenever I get a chance.  Cool cat, for sure, and yet another awesome Craigslist experience.

A Need to Lighten Up [Humor]

I am always telling myself to "lighten up."  Mostly that stems from some anxiety issues I have, but recently it's also been applicable to this feeling that there's really no reason to get worked up about anything, because the honest truth is, tomorrow will come as it may.  Needless to say, the situation in Haiti has gotten me very, very upset, and there's nothing we can do from here other than send money to reputable charities, pray, and wait for enough infrastructure to come back online to make rebuilding a possibility.

So, if any of you are feeling the way I am, I invite you to fill your hearts with laughter and lightness in order to replenish your emotional reserves and be your strongest for the struggles sure to crop up in the future:

Help Haiti Recover

Today, I have no thoughts of my own.  I am utterly stunned by the situation going on in Haiti, and I want to reach out to whoever is reading this blog and say, please, pay attention, find a reputable charity (see below) that will funnel its funds to those who need them most, and keep sending messages of healing and hope into the ether.

Here we have another opportunity to show what we're capable of as a civilization.  Let's not screw it up this time.  Let the world see how big our hearts can be.

This is a list compiled by MSNBC of all the charities known to be operating in Haiti.  I cannot attest to the legitimacy of ANY of them, nor do I know which ones give the largest percentage of funds to the actual cause versus advertising and recruitment efforts.  I urge you to check out the web pages and find out for yourself, and then donate.

I've donated $25 to UNICEF, and I intend to donate as much as I can afford.

How Big Is Your Picture? [Scope]

Today let's talk about scope.

I was tickled/annoyed the other day by a woman calling in from an AIDS research society who was unaware that there were style standards for writing scholarly papers.  Oy, vey.  I thought to myself, there is NO way she got through school without learning that!  And I have quite a bit of evidence that this is the case.

As I sat back and marveled at her seeming ignorance, I of course began to recognize that there were many, many reasons why despite having this drilled into her skull, this person with a PhD was oblivious to the concept of standardized writing style.  She was simply coming at the question of writing a paper from a different perspective, and it was outside the scope of my job to consider hers as a valid way of being.

Featured Blog of the Week: Lifehacker [Featured Blog]

Lifehacker is pretty much the best resource on earth.  Delightfully geeky, yet incredibly useful, the website is at its heart a blog dedicated to providing resources for those confused or overwhelmed by life today.  The writers are of the mind that technology should be used for good and in a way that increases productivity, rather than as a distraction or just as a source of entertainment.

Included on this frequently updated blog are the following sections:
-How-To: LOTS of different projects, tips, and DIY paraphernalia for the Maker in you.
-Tips:  Specifically user-submitted tips, running the gamut between tech how-to's and recipes for scrumptious meals.
-Downloads:What you'd expect, but these are mostly low-budget, open-source tools

And my personal favorite:
-Featured Workspace: Home offices of the productive and not-so-famous.  These are incredibly well-thought-out workspaces that inspire me every day to be more productive simply via organization and feng shui.

So, I encourage you to give this blog a look.  I subscribe to it via RSS because the layout can be confusing.

I honestly end up with a new useful tip from Lifehacker almost daily! (for instance, my new tagging style)

With Whom Do I Agree?

I was asked today by a coworker whether I am a die-hard democrat.  I laughingly answered, "no!" and proceeded to clarify that I'm not a die-hard anything, and that I disagree wholeheartedly with almost all political actions that are taken (or not taken).  The resulting question, after a short pause, was "well, what do you find so objectionable about Objectivism, then?"

Oh, boy.  I was somewhat blindsided by this, because as I see it, I'm diametrically opposed to Ms. Rand's philosophy on life, its celebration of selfishness, and its equating of personal pursuits with the common good.

comment malfunction (UPDATED)

It seems like comments aren't working...

...on that note, I guess I might as well tell you, I dislike greatly the Blogger service.  I will be exporting this blog to wordpress soon, I think...

Update:  It seems that it wasn't blogger, it was the custom template I had installed.  I've changed it (I like this one better) and the comments are working again.  Enjoy!

Levity [Humor]

A quick perusal of this blog makes it seem like I really don't have a sense of humor...

That's unfortunate, because I really feel like the crux of what I'm after in these posts is to help myself and others like me be at peace with the world, and I think that happiness, laughing, and general buoyancy of spirit are ESSENTIAL to letting the world wash over you without negative effects.

So every now and again I'm going to tag something with [Humor] in order to lighten the mood!

This guy is Awesome!

You can check out the story, but this is an adorable 8 (i've also read 10) year old boy who was banned from youtube after he got popular enough for the site admins to notice he was under the 13-year-old minimum.  So, of course, 4chan fights back with a viral campaign of porn clip mashups.  Apparently it was wildly successful, and hilarious.

Other, equally successful retaliations:
-repost all videos of parkour with naked performers
-find a way for this guy to repost his amazing videos :
-1-for-1 legit video for rickroll exchange.  Trust me on this one.

How would you mess with youtube?  Honestly, the possibilities are endless.

The Outsider Perspective

Observation is a powerful tool, and we use it from the moment we're born until the moment we die as a way to gather information. Our culture has formalized observational technique into multiple disciplines such as anthropology, behavioral biology, quantum physics (paradoxically), sociology, and so forth. The list is long because of how important observation is to our ability to gather information, and our senses seem designed to operate in a way that allows us to be absent as an agent but present as an observer.

Some will state that it is impossible to be an observer in our society, that we are all influenced by the situations we see and the way in which we process them. This is absolutely true, but only to a point. For the most part, the faculty most incapable of remaining impartial is our emotive capability, and the influence of our emotions seems directly tied to our investment in the situation at hand. To put it another way, the further removed from a situation you are, the better you will be at observing it impartially.

This premise is difficult to argue with; it is relatively clear that emotions and logical processes inhabit separate locations in our minds and while they certainly create feedback, noise, and difficulty for each other at times, it is theoretically possible to distill one without the other. Philosophy finds this as the ONLY method by which to approach problems of life, the universe, and everything.  The scientific method is based on this idea, on the assumption that there are facts and laws and mechanisms that can be known and understood based on observation and variable elimination.

And yet, almost to a person, we believe that the most essential way of knowing a person or a group of people is to be that person or a part of that group of people.  The distinction is incredibly important, because there are intrinsically subjective elements to being a unique organism or being part of a unique culture that cannot be understood from a separate context.  We have words to describe the inaccessibility of this knowledge, the most notable is Empathy.

To be empathetic is to have, for a split second, an understanding of what it means to be a part of the situation being observed.  This point of reference is used from that point onward in order to alter the situation, but at no point has the observer become the observed.  This is akin to our forays into astrophysics, which are based entirely on snapshots--generally stationary--of systems we cannot touch, feel, or measure directly.  We know that in all reality, this is the closest we'll come to a true understanding of the cosmos or of each other.

Interestingly, there are cases in which we do trust others to have more knowledge about ourselves than we do.  Psychotherapy is a perfect example of this, in which a total stranger is asked to help illuminate things about ourselves that we would otherwise be relatively blind to or in denial about.  The methodology surrounding psychology/psychiatry is such that rather than building a catalog of all the possible personalities, a good therapist will look for markers that indicate more common TYPES of personalities or ways of coping with life.

All of this is just a lead-up, though.  I want to talk specifically about efforts to "improve" the world (quotes for subjectivity).  Activist groups are a special breed, passionate to an intensity head and shoulders above the rest of their respective cultures and generally interested chiefly in solving problems that affect them at their specific social locations.  Western progressive activism tends to center itself around the concept of intersectionality, under which characteristics of a person decide their unique social location and end up creating subtly different communities underneath the larger progressive umbrella.

Race, class, gender, sexual orientation, (dis)ability, body type, educational level, and geography all play into this matrix of forces that influences us every day.  People at certain locations have more privileges than others due to history, context, and the Isms that describe the multiple types of discrimination faced by regular people every single day.  And thus, activists tend to rally in order to overcome these Isms.

(Full disclosure:  I'm white, male, well-educated, generally straight, without any disabilities)

The general feeling within these activist groups is one of emotional support, empowerment, re-education, and direct action.  There is not a huge amount of room for scientific discovery, which is in part due to the rejection of science as a valid way of describing human society (see this post).  However, there also seems to be a general sentiment that empathy is not enough.  To effectively  fight an Ism, you have to be affected by it.

And that's fine!  I'm not whining that I can't participate in empowerment campaigns for groups I don't belong to.  Being a progressive, forward-thinking individual, though, I do see room for improvement.

Activism could benefit greatly from a big dose of Outsider Perspective.  Not the hostile, "what are you whining about?" type, because this is given all too willingly and all too often.  I'm not even talking about the sort of white guilt that results in somewhat well-intentioned but ultimately doomed efforts to "save the children" of poorer, less-western, less-white cultures.  What I'm referring to is the perspective held by those of us who empathize with the cause but cannot participate due to the hypocrisy that would result.

And this is where I tend to get into trouble.  How do you approach a group of legitimately marginalized people and tell them, here, my privileged life has yielded a more helpful way of doing things!  I used to do this as a kid, before I understood the error I was making, by questioning the submissiveness and lack of academic integrity embraced by many young girls my age simply because they were girls.  It just wasn't my place to tell them that something was off, but it didn't change the fact that I knew.

Rather than end with a resolution, I end this post with a dilemma:  how do the well-intentioned, entirely devoted outsiders of a cause make a positive impact?  There has to be a way, just as there was a way to overcome the problem of powered flight, just as there was a way to fuel the civil rights movement in the 1960s, just as there now is a way to communicate nearly instantly using invisible ones and zeroes over thousands of miles.


I can't write today. I'm just too tired. But I am forcing myself to write SOMETHING every day, so, this is it. An admission of physical weakness. I'm giving up coffee and caffeine until my insomnia resolves itself.

I've got some new ideas though. And some great improvements to make to the blog, like references, links, pictures, and videos. That should really get it jumpstarted, eh?

see you tomorrow.

Corporate Responsibility

This is going to be a short one, because like yesterday, I'm just too tired to actually write anything worth sharing with friends.

I just wanted to touch on the ways in which we think about corporate responsibility. Opinions vary wildly depending on where you are in the world, if you are part of a corporation (and sense are both dulled and sharpened while being part of the machine), and so forth.

So, what does it even mean to be responsible? Is that something that's applicable to corporations, which by their very definition operate on the principle of the free market? Most people think that yes, there should be a guiding dogma for all corporate entities, and that this dogma be based on some amount of regulation. And yes, I'm including even the most radical laissez faire advocates in this analysis: even these individuals agree with holding companies to some amount of international law (like not killing people, for instance).

In our country, we try to regulate heavily based on the principle that corporations have a responsibility to consumers, investors, employees, and when large enough, the general public. The specifics of these regulations and the logic behind them differs from state to state and from market to market, but for the most part, our government seems to get that we want safe products made by workers who are treated well.

However, this is entirely at odds with corporate philosophy. Most, if not all, corporations operate on the principle that if a venture is profitable in the end, then steps along the way are justified. On the more responsible end of this continuum are companies that try to make ends meet, and when they can't, ask for input from employees and make changes based on collective bargaining. On the sleazy end are companies that perform massive layoffs, lower the quality of their products (or the quantity per dollar), or ship their industry to places where they are tax-exempt or where labor is cheaper. The degree to which they are motivated by Machiavellian economics varies, but the guiding principle is the same: the bottom line defines success.

And there are many in our country who believe that this is the way things should be. After all, we were founded on the principles of capitalism, meritocracy, and Locke's idea of equal starting points. Why is it then that companies with worse business models, practices, and products become more successful? Why is it that despite massive regulation, most industries find way to bypass the law? And why is it that despite a call for new jobs in the United States, a record number of positions are being shipped overseas?

I don't have answers to this. I personally think that capitalism is crap, an educated white man's justification for retaining the purse strings of an entire globe in the face of widespread poverty, violence, and intolerance. To me, the corporate structure reinforces the hierarchical structure of our society and maintains the perceived integrity of those on the top while dooming those at the bottom to obscurity.

But, like any person with an opinion but without a solution, I can't say that my perceptions are all that valid. I know I don't like what I see, but is there any way to successfully communicate ideas of frustration and disgust without an alternative in mind? For the most part, this is what gets those with a social conscience (some call us progressives. that was a joke.) are accused of on a daily basis: having criticisms without being able to forge a new paradigm from the decay all around us.

What do we need in order to do that? Collaboration? Better ideas? A new perspective? More power? LESS power? Inner peace? Inner pain?

Who knows?

No seriously. Who does? Do you?

The Science of Sleep

Boy, am I tired today. Sometimes, even well-intentioned people can be loud until midnight when you need to get up at 6:30 the next morning.

I woke up and did a quick analysis of my condition. Eyes barely staying open. Arms lethargic, legs like lead weights, coordination entirely off. 5 hours of sleep, after a weekend of extreme, strenuous, exhilarating fun (New Years, visit from my brother, a great evening with a new friend, and today, my birthday!). I'm about 12 hours in debt to myself, and there's really no sign that this deficit will be repaid any time soon.

But, as I arrived at work, buffeted by the bone-chilling Westchester Wind (I've anthropomorphised this Beast of Winter), I remembered something incredibly important that is honestly quite easy to keep in mind while I'm feeling well. In fact, it's become second nature to me, except when I'm cranky, anxious, or tired. Unfortunately, those are the times when advice such as this is most necessary. Bandages aren't that useful when you don't have a wound in need of dressing, and therapy is generally lost on even the most damaged of individuals if they happen to be in a good mood at the time.

But I digress. I walked, and I thought the following: at some levels, both the highest level of being (the Observer) and the lowest level (the Reactor), we need only BE. There is no need to engage ourselves in every distraction that comes our way. As long as we are engaged in our own existence, we are safe no matter what happens to us.

So today, I'm exhausted. I really would rather be at home and asleep than at work, but I know that focusing on that will only make my estrangement from bed all the more painful. As a culture, we tell ourselves all the time that focusing on the negative is not helpful, but in general our solution is to distract ourselves in some other way. For instance, I could focus on work or writing this post, but in the back of my mind, I will always be thinking about wanting to go to sleep.

This method sucks (at least for me). And I know I'm on a Zen-Heavy trip these days (sans the dogma and doctrine), but in a lot of cases, the Zen answer is the correct answer. In this particular case, we find that rather than distracting ourselves further, the healthiest course of action is to acknowledge the discomfort, let it be felt, and let the thought dissipate naturally. Don't dwell, but don't try to artificially replace the thought either. And voila! You're out the other side, on your way to some sort of sleep-deprived enlightenment!

Every moment of my life in which I deal with thoughts and experiences AS THEY COME is a successful moment for me. Every moment in which I succumb to distraction is slightly annoying, but not sinful. There is no sin in this world, and that's what makes it so powerful. Sin is just another distraction from self, a roadblock that must be overcome in order to be truly OK with the world from moment to moment.

And, that, my friends, is how you write a barely cogent blog post. It feels good, though.

Happy New Year!

This doesn't mean a whole lot now, considering no one reads this blog yet, but I want to set a precedent of having an "open thread" where people can just comment on whatever they want, and talk about whatever is on their minds. Enjoy!
A blog about social change, written from Brooklyn, New York. Currently looking for contributors.