society

Labels

People feel they need to categorize things to understand them, to poses them, to not be controlled by them; and to, in turn, be in control themselves. People feel they want to be categorized so that they might belong to something, to fit into a category is to not be alone. Categorization, the act of labeling is a mechanism of limitation, and it becomes a requirement, an obsessive requirement when you look at the differences between things before you look at the likenesses shared among them. If we were to teach ourselves, and in turn one another, that it is right to look at the commonalities we share with people before we distinctualize the differences, we would see a core bond of livingness, of feelingness, of what we refer to as the inherently HUMAN part of our nature as the initial defining characteristic of anyone we meet. We label to combat the perception of isolation.

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The wage gap..."gender" equality not just about women...I'm not talking LGBT

There is one obvious area where the equal pay concept stretches out beyond the male/female paradigm, and that is, of course, the LGBT world. But that conversation, to me, is as easy as saying: wouldn't it be great if we lived in a society where people all got treated fairly regardless of their minority status?

This is about something a bit more interesting, in my opinion, than the complaint that there are people in the world who are biased, bigoted asses. I found a handful of articles on a recent study about sexist attitudes and the wage gap, these articles explain that it is not just women, but also men that support equal pay and women in the work force, that receive less pay than men that lead households that support the so-called traditional gender roles in regards to out-of-the-home work.

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The Most Important Factor...(Free Culture and the Body of Politics Pt.2)

So, remembering my previous post about the need to inform a democratic people before they vote I went to YouTube to resurrect a piece I found about why we need to teach civics to the masses. This falls in line with the notion that if you want your Democracy to exist AT ALL, there is an absolute necessity to make certain that the people are well educated, well informed, and an active part of the system.

The thing about this clip I appreciate the most is how it points out at the very beginning that dissent is required in any Democracy. That dissent can be nurtured and actually taught to people. Proper dissent that provokes new ideas and fresh perspectives within a properly functioning democracy. In light of this concept, one can reach the conclusion that those who would silence dissent within a democracy, are actually not in favor of that democracy. Now, ask yourself, who, in American politics has shown intolerance against dissent of any sort at any time in the past? Please keep that in mind at all times.

Anyway, the video...

 

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To blog or not to blog...

It's been all quiet on my blog for quite some time, so I thought I should make a post. I should blame school for this, but the fact of the matter is that I am just not so certain as to what direction to take this blog. I know I have the whole "technical progress" thing, which is fun, but doesn't fill what I am hungry for.

I do have my family, and ultra-personal things I could publish here, which I could do for hours, but I think I rather keep some things from the public arena. I also feel like I betray privacy when I get out to blog about my family. I suppose I am feeling out what I am comfortable publishing here on that level. I also feel there is only egotism involved in blogging about myself, and believe you me, my ego is pretty big as it is.
Socio-Political? This is easy. Almost toooooo easy. Seriously, who wants another rant-blog/opinion piece collection? I have some very strong opinions and ideas there, some bordering on the anarcho-communist, and some not quite so extreme. But I want to put out GOOD ideas, not just Angry ideas, and it seems that most political blogs are either angry or bereft with tunnel-vision. That is certainly not what I want to appear as. I think I might open up some forum space for that. I know there is ONE reader interested in that sort of EXCHANGE.

And here we have it, EXCHANGE. The platform I am using for this site is based off of communal exchange, community building, not just blogging or serving up the occasional media file. Exchange. This is what Drupal is good for. And I don't mean the blase` social networking sites like facebook or myspace. While they have their place, it seems that while they benefit from and, in a very nominal way enhance social bonds, they seem to me to be not much more than predatory spaces doing little more than exploiting existing social relationships and providing space for egocentrical expression without providing a means to, or encouraging the exchange of socially relevant content.

Let me explain that: social networking sites capitalize on pre-existing relationships and affiliations to build a user base. In essence they do nothing more than attempt to take the place of the "face" of the relationship, to become the channel in which the relationship is expressed without actually providing any new content. You see, it does nothing new and nothing more than attempt to exploit people's ego and egotism. While this is fine for them, and I am sure has its place...somewhere... What I would like to see, and would love to be a part of is something entirely different. Some thing which does not simply take advantage of existing networks, but promotes the formation of NEW networks based on the EXCHANGE of socially relevant, substance based CONTENT.

Another way to view these two differing ideas is to look at them as recipies which create similar dishes. In one, you start with pre-existing social networks, and you add an avenue of egocentric expression, and you get an online community. The other you start by promoting substance based content, provide an avenue of relating the content to other pieces of content, and you get a totally new community. Drupal is a brilliant platform for this. Community building based off of content, and the exchange of relevant content. Substance, not ego.

I think that is why it has been so quiet around here this month. I am looking to build a substance based site, with a focus on community and the exchange of relevant content. So I have been really muling over the direction I want. Really trying to keep things from being "all about me", and trying to brew up a good direction that still leaves the site open-ended enough to take on new avenues of thought and expression.

I want ideas to live and grow here, not just ego.

I could now go into a piece about how I think that the contrast between substance and ego is the very thing that is spurring degradation of our culture, our politics and our lives in general...but I will not. I will, perhaps, work on that as an opinion piece, and give it its own little place to live. I will leave it at that for now.

So, it seems as if the content here, is the concept of content itself. H'm. Content based content. Stop. In the end all things degrade down into nothingness. So, in the spirit of the totally confusing nature of thing/nothingness, I now have a blog/site which is content based in its intent, but has absolutely no direction for that content. In other words, it is a site for substantial ideas, not egos...but it is about nothing in particular and is totally fine with a purely egocentric expression, just so long as the egotism comes after the substance in the content, and doesn't try to create substance in order to validate the ego into content. Well, it makes sense to me...

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Brighter Light

Well, a few posts back there I had the pure pleasure of blogging about not being able to return to school next semester due to some clerical issue blah blah blah. Well, I am happy to say that I found a way around this little blunder, and what I took to be cause for major alarm turned out to be nothing but the equivalent of...say, a very minor alarm? Yes, a very minor alarm indeed. One simple form filled out and all wounds were instantly healed. Looks like I'll be back in there in a few weeks, but only 6 credit hours, time to make some money! Do read on...

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