Tag Archives: morality

The Black Lives Matter Protests

The protests have gone worldwide. It’s a continuation of an old, old fight against something that never should have existed to begin with going back to lynchings and slavery, and I, for one, am happy to see so many people rising up and taking a stand against it. It tells me that there are still a lot of humans out there with compassion, spine, and a working moral compass. This generation out there on the front lines is no joke. The world is not just evil and complacency after all. People are fighting for the soul of this nation. And we’re seeing it play out in real time, and there are things we can ALL do.

I’m going to take a moment to clarify a few things. I’ve been unfriending people on facebook and they sometimes want to know why. So I’m going to state the obvious here so I can just link to it. At this late date, everyone should already know these things, but it seems some don’t. If you don’t need this, skip ahead to the line of asteriks.

I have heard some call them “rioters” and “looters”. But it’s already documented that most of that is coming from rightwing hate groups and cops seeking to discredit them. One does not take chances with COVID 19 and killer cops just to get a free TV or break a window. And if some of the protesters did do some damage, I can’t blame them. I totally get wanting to smash things when nobody listens. Again, people are fighting for the soul of this nation.

Have a look at these links and tell me where police loyalties lie:

vs.a known hate group getting a police escort:

“All lives matter”. People use that to brush the issues aside. This is worth a read: https://www.itv.com/news/channel/2020-06-08/blog-if-you-say-all-lives-matter-i-say-this/

And then there are those white folks who fear equality lest the tables are turned. But to have “black supremacy” on the scale of what white people did would involve exacting revenge, enslaving the few survivors, cutting them off from any trace of their culture and keep them from progressing civically for GENERATIONS. Your worries are just your guilty conscience.

This isn’t about who’s going to be top dog. The protesters are people of all races. Even a preschooler knows that it’s wrong to kill someone simply because you’re allowed to get away with it. I don’t know why grown-ass adults have so much trouble grasping this.

Resources and things you can do:



A Growing List of Resources for the Movement for Black Lives

This is excellent. Racism is brainwashing. Why not counter some of it with teaching materials?

Teaching Materials

For everyone who can’t be there:


Follow Bernice A. King:


Follow Ilyasah Shabazz:


The following is from Evylyn Rose at the * REDACTED *  forum:

“Pandemic safety tips for those who can go out to join the protests:


“This is the site for bail funds specific to Richmond, Virginia, but this particular page provides US-wide statistics on the need for posting bail (hint: *not* posting bail sways guilty verdicts – it’s almost like freedom is only for those who can pay…) and a section on racial discrimination factors. If you’re considering donating to a cause, bail funds aren’t just a ticket out of a few nights in jail – they are a major way to fight back against the broken system.


“There’s also supply drop-offs being set up for those who might not have money to share right now, but maybe have some extra duct tape, baking powder, band-aids, vinegar, or about a dozen other supplies that go toward medical prevention and treatment for protestors. This one gives a list of needed supplies & contact info for the one in the DC area:

DC Doesn’t Have a Bail Fund. Here’s How You Can Donate to Help Protesters.

“And just for a bit of inspiration and hope:


And remember: this is for all of us. No country should be allowed to slide into fascism. No genocide should be allowed to occur. What is done to one is done to all, if allowed to continue.

On Our Now-Nazi Country, and Where We Go From Here

My facebook friend Joshua Ellis posted this in the wee hours.
Having a game plan is a tiny ray of hope.
Maybe we’ve got this. It’s on you, and it’s on me.
Are you in?

People started hitting me up last night long before the concession. Messages came through all night while I slept and this morning.

One friend suggested that perhaps I was culpable in some small way for this – me and people like me – for not just getting onboard the Clinton train unreservedly and unambiguously and putting my reservations and ambiguity aside until after the election. And today I am haunted by the idea that he might be right, that I could have done more.

But as I told him: “Have I ever given you the impression, in all the years you’ve known me, that this would be the way I’d handle that?”

Perhaps I could have done more, but I’m not sure I could have done any different. The only way I really matter in the world is that I tell the truth as I understand it. I might be wrong, my conclusions may be erroneous, but I never lie about them. That’s all I have.

And let’s face it, would anybody have really believed me if I’d done an about face after the primary and told you I had no doubts about Hillary Clinton? You would have known I was full of shit.

But that’s not what people were mostly asking me about in those messages. They were asking me variations on the same question: what do we do now?

I was not in any way exaggerating the consequences I believe this election will have on America. I think that unless something completely unforeseeable happens, this country is going to fall, or begin to fall, under this president. The only way I see around that is if Donald Trump completely reverses every position he claimed to hold during the election.

The fact that this is not entirely out of the realm of possibility is almost as unnerving as the likelihood that he won’t.

I think that the political reality is that progressives and liberals are going to be in a body cast for the next two years at least and probably the next four. With a majority Congress and a President and at least one Supreme Court nominee, the Republicans are ascendant. This election was a revolution, it turns out – just not the one that people like me were hoping for.

I’m gonna be really blunt here: I’m writing most of you political folks off now. Political activism only works if you can effect change, and the government is going to ignore you entirely now, because they know they can.

The dominant American voter base today are triumphant regressives who hate you. They do. They hate you. They did not elect Trump because they love you and simply think your ideas were well-intentioned but misguided. They want to punish you. They could not have made that any clearer. Do you really think they’re going to call their leaders to intervene at Standing Rock? Or be outraged when the next black boy ends up on the street face down? They are indifferent to the Natives and they hate and fear the black boys, and they will not stand in the way when these people are shoved face down into the mud. They might even get a boot on your back.

(The Libertarians probably won’t, but they won’t lend a hand, either. The Libertarians are pointless selfish shitheads whose only value to society is dealing weed and making DC Comics rich off licensed Guy Fawkes mask sales. You a Libertarian? Yeah, I’m looking right at you when I speak. Your candidate was a fucking carnival geek and so were you for voting for him. Go build a floating pirate island somewhere out of remaindered paperback copies of The Wealth Of Nations, and don’t forget to go fuck yourself as you climb aboard the SS Galtcock. Wankers.)

Ahem. Where was I?

So where does that leave us? Armed insurrection? Sheeeeeeeeeit. Most of you people throw a temper tantrum if the olive in your bacon martini isn’t free trade. Six hours in the mud in a secret camp out in the woods and you’d give the revolution’s position away by calling an Uber to roll bounce the fuck out. You’d go full Weathermen and let Tyler the unemployed MFA grad student try to wire up the bombs because his mixtape was lit af. (Spoiler alert: explosion and splattering noises.) You could use the Black Bloc as your footsoldiers, but that would only net you a decisive victory against Starbucks picture windows and anybody who happened to be downwind of them.

(Public service announcement, Black Bloc: it’s hard to effectively smash the state when the state knows you’re coming from a mile away by the reek of dirt weed and stank ass coming off your Crass hoodie. You know what Bakunin liked as much as collective choice? Bathing.)

But that’s a good thing, because violence begets violence, and hipster jihad would end very badly not just for Them but for Us. Robespierre’s severed head could have told you that with its last breath as it lay in the guillotine basket.

Where does this leave us then, if we’re politically neutered and we’re leaving those Blue Dawn fantasies abandoned at the Crazytown bus station?


It turns out that there’s a lot you can do to sabotage people by moving money around… or not moving it. It also turns out that most of the people who voted for Trump live in economically precarious places whose lifeline relies upon consumption of their goods by people in urban areas. Very few of them make anything anymore. They grow food and they sell each other Arby’s sandwiches. They’re angry because they feel like we’ve ignored them for a long time.

I think it would be deeply funny if we devoted our strict attention to them for a while.

Imagine what would happen if you stopped buying produce from grocery stores and only bought it from farmer’s markets in your own city, from local producers. Even better: grow your own food. It’s not that hard to automate that process and you can do it anywhere, even in the desert. Can’t do it in your own backyard? There are community gardens everywhere. Let’s turn the cities into places not only of consumption but production. Let’s grow our own food on a massive scale. Let’s cripple the farmers who voted for Trump, and then batter the Republicans for trying to sneak white-people welfare through under the guise of “farm subsidies”.

What else? Well, a lot of people are looking at ways to do basic universal income, and some of them are looking at decentralized, non-state-based ways of doing that. Some of them are more realistic than others, but let’s put some effort into solving that problem. Let’s get it working over the next four years.

And then let’s cut them off. Because if it’s not government run it doesn’t have to be for everybody, any more than Mormons have to share their food stocks with hungry non-Mormons if they don’t want to. (And to be fair, they often do.) So let’s give money to people of color and homeless people and people we like, and let the rest of the country slowly realize that the vast majority of that welfare they despise so much, that Daddy Trump is going to get rid of, actually goes into their own communities, not to black welfare queens.

Let’s double down on automating jobs while we’re at it. Let’s spend our savings on solar panels for our houses rather than bling and artisanal food, so we can finally kill the Appalachian coal economy for good. Instead of getting rid of our cars completely, which is unfeasible, let’s downsize to scooters and motorcycles and create cheap ridesharing systems so that when we need to go to IKEA or Costco, we just rent a truck for fifty bucks once a month to do it, which is still cheaper. Let’s cripple the oil companies.

Let’s make a deliberate decision to support people who by choice or by necessity leave the wage economy and try to make a living creatively. Consider them beta testers for the new economy that’s coming. Stop telling them they’re unrealistic. Thinking that the traditional model of employment is going to endure is the actual unrealistic thing.

Most of all, let’s turn our back on the bullshit American Dream that we’re all going to live lives of luxury and prosperity any day now. Stop investing in corporations and start investing in people. Don’t buy real estate as an investment, because protecting that investment often leads you to unintentionally inflict a lot of horror on other people. Buy a house to live in it until you die. Invest in fixing it up not to flip it, but so that your children have a beautiful place to grow up in and live in and pass down to their children.

Stop buying new cars – you don’t need one and the five year warranty ends up costing you more in interest and full coverage insurance alone than if you bought a used car and paid a mechanic to get it into perfect condition. Hell, spend your weekends learning to fix your own car with a Chilton’s manual and YouTube sitting next to you.

Learn to build your own furniture. It’s cheaper and fun. Be okay with having cinderblock bookshelves and pine tables. Build makerspaces to share resources and knowledge. Cook your own food. Fix things that break instead of replacing them.

Stop giving a shit about looking prosperous. Stop acting like a temporarily embarrassed millionaire. It’s scary, but you’ll dig it after a while.

And let’s protect each other. If Trump outlaws abortions, let’s figure out ways to get women to safe places elsewhere they can have it done. Let’s start sending people across the border to buy medicine cheap for their friends and families. Let’s start building underground railroads to help queer kids get out of their hateful small towns and into places where they will be not only accepted but celebrated. Let’s volunteer to protect our Muslim friends and our black friends and our trans friends and their places of worship and community. Let’s abhor the fact that we might need to watch out for a lot of our lady friends and keep them safe from being grabbed by the pussies, but let’s do it anyway.

To paraphrase Batman: We’re not going to kill the people who last night chose the path our country is on now, but we don’t have to save them, either. We can save the people who need and deserve saving, though, now more than ever, and by doing so, we can save ourselves. Because they are us.

The time for dank memes and shitposting is done. The time for hearts and minds is done. We’ve lost those. The time for hitting the bricks and getting our hands dirty and organizing ourselves not to protest or petition but to just get shit done is at hand.

Start today. I am. Channel your fear into decision: I’m not going to wait until tomorrow to jump in the game anymore. It’s my turn to play.

You will ward the darkness off with your light. You will earn your place in history. You will be heroes, forever and ever.

Right now, it’s time to kick out the jams, motherfuckers.

Are you in?

On movies, morals, and reading cards

Jean Harlow in “Red Dust”, 1932


Greetings from puritanical America, where Europe has been dumping her religious fanatics for centuries and gay marriage is actually considered controversial in entirely too many circles. If you’re a card reader, you might be more enlightened than most – we’re fringe people, after all, and tend to be more accepting towards people of different sexual orientations, races, and religions other than Christianity. But sadly, there’s narrow-mindedness in the community, as well. First I’d like to talk about movies, though. There’s a reason for this. 😉 Read on:

We probably all grew up watching old movies, and movies made between 1934 and 1968 were made during the enforcement of the Hays Code. The Hays Code, if by some chance you don’t know of it, was a puritanical list of things that weren’t allowed in movies, like race mixing, lampooning clergy, and “excessive or lustful kissing”. Any behavior deemed to be immoral had to be presented in an unsympathetic manner, and the characters had to be punished, which made these movies utterly predictable for the most part. You knew that any “immoral” character would be dead or jailed by the end of the movie. It didn’t matter if it was a psycho killer or just someone stepping out on their spouse, they were doomed.

Pre-Code, however, tells another story. Sometimes things caught up with people, sometimes not. A lot like real life. The characters are usually well drawn, and you can often sympathize with them and the things they do. Marlene Dietrich cheats on her husband and goes on the lam with her little boy in Blonde Venus (1932), but you can see WHY. You WANT her to make it, and if she’d ended up dead or jailed at the end, it would be too depressing to ever watch a second time. Good people can do bad things if they have good reasons.


Sometimes people have to make a buck.

Same with Jean Harlow, there at the top of this post. In Red Dust she’s got a heart of gold, and she lands Gable in the end, even though she was hooking in Saigon prior to that. I’m not sure what my all-time favorite movie ending is, Harlow landing Gable at the end of “Red Dust”, or Harlow landing Gable at the end of “China Seas”. 😀 In “Red Headed Woman” (also 1932), on the other hand, she has NO heart, wrecks a marriage, attempts to kill a man, has multiple affairs and uses sex simply to get ahead. In the end, she’s got a filthy rich old husband in Paris and a young lover. She’s neither dead nor jailed. Sometimes things happen that way. The movie is hilarious though, one of those things you have to see to appreciate.


So what the hell is all this doing on the card blog, you ask? Very simple. Chances are the movies you grew up with were code. Very old movies have always been hard to catch without putting some effort into tracking them down. If you don’t hunt for them, you probably won’t see many, if any at all. How many hours have you spent watching code movies? What you see again and again gets ground into your head, and you have to do a little housecleaning from time to time by thinking about it rationally. (And I know this well, I grew up in TEXAS, and I’m there now. I do a LOT of reflecting and brain-cleaning. 😛 ) There’s lot of moralizing by otherwise good people in online card reading groups. It’s AUTOMATICALLY assumed that the married guy somebody’s asking about IS JUST USING HER FOR SEX AND DOES NOT CARE, that the Snake is the OTHER WOMAN, that naturally poly people are ASSHOLES, and the world is full of DIRTY BIRDIES WHO MUST BE STOPPED. Sounds like a code movie to me. If you’re reading this, you’re probably a nice person – that stuff is for harpies who snoop in their mens’ cell phones, not you! Don’t fall in with that kind of thinking. The world is more complex than that. The CARDS are more complex than that – read them and see what they say, don’t twist them to what the current, dry Bible-thumper culture would have you say.


If you don’t do that kind of stuff (and a lot of you don’t, you’re awesome) just do the world a favor and don’t let it go unremarked if you see it, OK? Thanks.


If you go pro, you’re going to get all kinds of clients and you won’t approve of everything they’re doing. But the fact is, they’re consenting adults and it’s their business, so it’s key for us to keep our personal standards for ourselves and read their cards. If they wanted a sermon, they could get that easily enough without paying for it. They called YOU and spilled their guts to a stranger. Maybe they have good reasons for the things they’re doing. Maybe not. I’ve had a few who were so dishonest and oblivious to others feelings that I felt kind of repelled, but most are just very human, and for the purpose of reading cards, it doesn’t really matter.


The world is kind of like pre-code movies, and nothing like all those code movies that got ground into our heads at an early age. And this is a GOOD thing. 😉 Now loosen up, you’ll feel better. I leave you with the most incomparably expressive actress of all time, Miss Clara Bow:

“Hot sox – give me HIM!”