All over the web, all over the blogosphere, I'm hearing pious comments from those on the right about how this is necessary, to balance the budget; about how it's just, because why should teachers be different from anyone else, getting paid a fortune and guaranteed lifelong employment while only having to work nine months a year; about how it's just good business to give the rich guys tax breaks at the expense of the middle class, because that's how we get the economy rolling again.
None of these talking points are based on reality, as I am sure I don't have to tell any of you; but the fact that I am seeing them, over and over, tells me the right-wing is getting their version of reality out there. Via Faux News and Rush and Glenn Beck and that crew, no doubt, but whatever, people are buying that narrative. The fact that that version of reality will destroy our country --- has been destroying our country -- that wake up call will, no doubt, hit most of them far too late.
I can't take my eyes off Wisconsin lately. Did you see the part about pizzas -- how people from all over the country and all over the word (people from Turkey!) are calling pizza shops around Madison and having pizzas sent over to the protestors? (No pizzas from Arkansas, I notice. Ha. Color me shocked.)
Of course, if you watch nothing but Fox News, all you hear about is how Scott Walker is a hero, doing the manly man hard work of balancing the budget (they don't mention how he unbalanced it, giving tax breaks to his assbuddies the Koch brothers, paying them back for buying him the election), so that's how half of America still sees what's going on.
And who owns Fox News again? Someone remind me of that?
Yeah, not so much. That's like fixing your problem with the giant credit card debt and hospital bills by canceling your cable. Yeah, the thirty bucks a month you save (and yes, I *am* speaking from personal experience, how kind of you to ask) is thirty bucks you don't have to spend -- but does it really do much to help against the fifteen hundred dollar deficit you are running?
(And before anyone says, oh, but stop buying lattes, and don't waste money on cigarettes, and you should live on crackers and grits LIKE WE DID WHEN WE WERE POOR, I've got something for you right over here in this cupboard. Yeah. It's a big cup of STFU. The problem was never how we were wasting money. The problem was the thousands of dollars the hospitals charged me, and then us, and, when we lived in states where this was legal, the interest they changed on those bills when we couldn't pay right away. This was over and above what our insurance paid out, yes. For instance: in Idaho, when I had my kid, the insurance did not cover "well baby check" at the hospital. WTF? So that was fourteen hundred dollars I was supposed to pay out of pocket, when I was still paying off the hospital and doctor bills from Arkansas for my thyroid cancer -- when I didn't *have* a spare nickel, in other words. Guess where I had to put that $1400? On a credit card. Which charged, eventually, 39 percent interest.
But yes. I'll cut my cable bill. That will help. And stop buying iced coffee. By all means. Not that I could ever afford to *do* that, mind you...
Where was I?)
Oh, yes. Here! Fred, at Slacktivist, explains why the problem is not the U.S. Government version of the cable bill. So those who think it is should STFU. Though he doesn't say that. Because he's nicer than me.
...over there in Wisconsin, but then I see this, from Palin, who is -- what?
Just -- what?
And I can't stop myself.
Palin is (pretending to be) upset because Michelle Obama is doing what she can to encourage more Americans to breastfeed their children. Now why, you might ask, would anyone, especially anyone who is Pro-Life, as Palin claims she is, be opposed to breastfeeding babies?
Well, because liberals are pro-breastfeeding babies, obviously. Anything the Left likes, the Right hates. Never mind your silly evidence about breastfeeding being better for babies.
Over on FanSci on Monday, I posted about my experiences writing and publishing Science Fiction, many of which influenced my shift into feminism.
Anyway, here is an essay by Melissa Delorenzo on the latest publishing statistics, which show, no real shock here, that still fewer women are being published than men, in all fields.
It goes on to mention a few things editors and publishers might consider doing to amend that real difference -- because, like those professors that ran my program, back in the day, it's not just an immutable law of the universe that more men are getting published than women. These things don't just HAPPEN. Humans make the world. Humans can make it different.
A giant snowstorm is about to descend upon us, our third (or is it fourth?) in about two weeks.
Not that I mind, since as you know I love snow and I love the extra writing time.
Except this one, with its giant front, has brought me a giant migraine ahead of time, and I am trying to get my Fiction Workshop students' stories read & commented on, as well as dealing with this month's Crossed Genres submissions.
Meanwhile, here is a new FanSci! Go read! It is about pie! (Not really.)
Two inches so far and more falling steadily, on top of the unmelted snow and ice from earlier in the week. Our university gave up and closed until Monday. I taught exactly four classes this week -- three on Monday, before the storms hit, and one last night, the Fiction Workshop.
Class last night was a bit dicey, in fact, because the roads were pretty bad, and people in Pork Smith drive like tools whether there is ice on the roads or not. So I was driving carefully -- fifty-five in the slow lane, watching out for patches of ice, of which there were many -- and absolute idiots were roaring up behind me, riding my bumper, even though they could easily have moved over into the fast lane to pass me, riding my bumper for a minute or two with their high beams on, to teach me a lesson, I guess, show me a thing or two about what happens to people who DARE to drive slow on the interstate, and only then moving into the fast lane and roaring past me, at about 90, on an icy road, in the dark.
Because, you know, the laws of physics do not apply to people in huge SUVs who live in Arkansas and voted for Sarah Palin, I guess is teh reasoning here.
(I did have one student write me an essay once: he claimed he never wore a seatbelt or worried when he drove fast because he put his faith in God. When it was his time to go, it was his time to go. Nothing he did made any difference in the face of God's plan. If God wanted him to die on the highway he would. If God didn't want him to he would not. So I guess these idiots could just be really, really faithful. You don't need physics if you have faith.)
Meanwhile: for me, more coffee, more writing.
And according to the weather channel? More snow coming next week.
Woke to the crashing sounds of sheets of sleet sliding off the roof today, which alarmed the kitten very much. I believe she thought the robot armies of the Mouse Overlord had finally invaded. When I checked my mail, I found the university cancelled classes. (Yay!)
All day long we have had snow, sleet, blowing winds, and temperatures in the low teens. Frosty! The dogs refused to go outside. The cat stood on the windowsill and looks appalled.The kid wanted to walk to the grocery to buy more lime popsicles, but I refused to let her -- the Weather Channel had Severe Weather alerts out about wind chill, and it's not like she has proper winter gear. (This is Arkansas, after all. NONE of us has winter gear.) The yard was solid with frozen pools of ice, over which drifts of snow skidded very dramatically. I drank coffee and write and wrote.
One theory I recently read says the world climate has spun -- we've got the arctic circle's weather now, and they've got ours. Not sure I believe that, but this has been a stormy winter. Low tonight of 10 degrees, with heavy wind gusts expected; low tomorrow night of zero. Outside my window, the world looks Siberian.