What really got me worst-thinking about feminism, that is, how to define it, dear worst-reader, was the 2008 election. I was watching a news podcast or some youtube video where women were being interviewed at the beach about the upcoming election. Indeed, dear worst-reader, asking bikini ladies about Hillary Clinton while soaking up the sun is a wondrous venue for armchair prognosticators. And. Yes. I wanted Hillary in 2008! Nomatter. I couldn’t believe the response by most of the beach bunnies. In short, they all hated Hillary Clinton. A few of them even called her a bitch. Spring forward. With recent release of a new Annie Lennox album and subsequent promotion of that album, thoughts once again of what feminism exactly is are stirred in my worst-mind. This seems to happen a lot whenever I witness examples of how the system has blinded and manipulated so many, including the author of the article below. Luckily, I’ve long since come to a conclusion, albeit I do not consider it etched in stone. And so, here is my worst-definition of feminism. Please forgive me if it is a bit winded and, of course, one-sided. First, feminism is more than a movement about equal rights. Not unlike the variants that make up political ideologies, feminism is (should be) part of a/our/the political equation (and I hope someday that it will be), yet it is not. With that in mind, the cat-fight nature of how some women perceive feminism is truly daunting. But I’m drifting. Feminism is (should be) about women defining themselves devoid of patriarchal influence. In other words, it is easy to see who and what defines a performer such as Beyoncé. The money grabbing superficiality of bright lights and shaking torsos where limited creativity is easily superimposed with a sellable formula has long since proven to function. Just ask Madonna. Yet the subtle gesture of an offering, an offering of talent and creativity that is devoid of roles or physical gesticulations, yet still stands up to the scrutiny of artistry, well, Vive la Annie Lennox. It is shameful that in a world where half of our species must be shrouded in cloth, beaten into submission, subjected to the whims of male brutality, refused reproductive rights and controlled by misconstrued patriarchy, that women in a anyway try to defend behaviour that is obviously defined by men. Wow. Rant on.
Take into consideration, dear worst-reader, before you read the link below, that I am from Washington DC. I went to dumb-down school just south of the nations capital and my US address (when I’m in the US) is just east of it. I also lived in Virginia for a short stint of this/my useless-eating life. Boy, do I have a lot of memories of DC and its surroundings that date back to the 1970s. Of course, besides the contradictory feelings I have for it, recent years have proven to me that there is something to be said for outgrowing one’s home. Yet it still leaves me with regrets. For example, I was never able to actually live in DC. Although, even today, as an American Expat, so far away, I still dream about having a small apartment in Georgetown (where I worked), or living in a bigger place on Mass Avenue (where I had many extended stays with an old, dear friend.) Then there were the various bars and nightlife that twirled my world when I was young (I worked my first restaurant job in DC when I was 19). Of course, with every visit home from Eurowasteland, I always enjoyed a night out in DC. And let’s not forget the theatre scene on 14th street that I tried so desperately to be part of in the early 90s–but was profoundly rejected. Oh well. With all that nonsense in mind, DC is a pretty cool place. Yet the last few years that I’ve visited, one thing has stood out: the lie that is American’t development, particularly real-estate development. Two years ago on a visit I stood in awe in some areas of DC watching the construction of (what looked like) thousand unit condos. They were being built in huge lots in the middle of town or on the shores of waterways that surround the city’s south where old and dilapidated military facilities were dormant for years. Last year most of the construction was completed–and my jaw didn’t drop when I looked up real-estate prices. But I suppose for most not familiar with DC, the term ‘wow’ is an understatement when it comes to measuring the cost of life there. Luckily one of my friends got into the DC real-estate market twenty years ago. He’s now given up on DC and moved to some exotic asian place where he lives cheaply off rental income from his DC property. And when he says to me on one of our regular Skype connections that he doesn’t miss DC in the least, I’m not surprised. DC has changed, indeed. It has not changed for the better. That is of course an understatement but it also of no surprise. I don’t have a hard time believing my old friend. He needed a break from the town he grew up in. It had changed beyond him. It had become a kind of nemesis home. Indeed, dear worst-reader, it’s hard to face the reality of what’s become of what used to be an interesting town whose residents were always struggling to be part of an American metropolitan place and not just a homestead for military adherents and automaton bureaucrats. But none of that is worth giving much worst-thought. The thing to keep in mind when reading that a place like Washington DC leads the worlds greatest fail-upward nation in real-estate costs, is that no matter how expensive it becomes, no matter how much value the owners of capital get out of it, it will still be just a town built on a swamp in the middle of a nation divided by ignorance and reactionary (political) forces. DC will never be San Francisco or New York or any other ‘real’ metropolitan place. It will never give the world culture or creativity. It will always remain the shit-hole of world politics that has ruined life for generations to come. It will also be the centre of the cesspool that is both Maryland and Virginia, places that provide it all the inept minions that keep the cogs of the DC machine going. But I’m not bitter about it. Really. Rant on.
“Human beings to flourish must be possessed by one idea, a central meaning to which all experience can be related.” -Gore Vidal (Essay: Contemporaries: The Norman Mailer Syndrome, 1960)
The moment Affleck started interrupting Harris I thought, wow, he seems like he’s got a score to settle. Or should I worst-write today, dear worst-reader, of what I think of Ben Affleck? Yeah, let’s go there. Is there such a thing as a disingenuous actor? I mean, an actor that acts disingenuously. Nomatter. I think the first movie I saw with him was that silly one with Matt Damon, which I consider to be a totally pretentious film, albeit Robin Williams was ok in it. But Affleck–as mediocre as Damon was–was horrible. The man cannot act his way out of a wet-paper bag. But he is, according to his bank account–and his ability to memorise lines–and perhaps due to his chin–a great Hollywood careerist. And I guess that’s ok. I used to think the same of George Clooney–and even though I still don’t think Clooney can act, the man’s film resume holds up to Tommi’s worst-scrutiny. Anywho. Maybe Affleck can turn me around someday. But then again, when Affleck makes appearances like this (link to video below) and says, reeking of sarcasm and disrespect “Thank God you’re here” to someone like Sam Harris, well, I guess, the world needs a few more I’m-important-I’m-an-actor to set us straight. But the real problem with Affleck’s attack is that it justifies or legitimises reactionary behaviour. As history already knows, reactionary behaviour is part of what got American’t into the situation that it is currently in. You know, we are repeating history and especially the early twentieth century in a big way. But I digress. I guess. Rant on.
Links that motivated this post:
You gotta luv this stuff. Example upon example of the demise of what might have been a great experiment. A country experiment, that is. Or. Wait. A nation-state experiment. Nomatter. As far as the examples go… Here just a few more examples of American’t in its 3rd world statehood: ISIS or ISIL, Ebola in Dallas, recent manipulation of “choice” rights in Texas, etc. Indeed, dear worst-reader, the list (could) go on. But we’ll stop there and focus only on one more. Indeed, an example of 3rd world statehood like no other. I mean, this one is even better than trying to list all the manipulations by corporate American’t through lobbyists. For this, dear worst-reader, is less subtle than those lobbyist who work behind the scenes. I mean, come on, how many American’ts are actually aware of what goes on in the filth halls of Congress? Again. Nomatter. Still. I feel compelled to worst-write something about this happening more so than that happening–although the abortion thing in Texas was high on my list. Below an article describing how dysfunctional American’t socialist-capitalism (there, I said it!) really is. If you are an angry participant in the farce that is American’t pseudo democracy and the lie that is a political system based on capitalism (which isn’t a political system by definition) and this doesn’t get under your gander, than only your private lord knows what will. Either that or you’ll just continue to take comfort in the conservative krapp that has pre-occupied you for the past 30+ years, e.g. guns, taxes, big government, etc. In worst-short text, what we’re dealing with is a company that manufactures all the glass for Apple touchscreen devices. Obviously this company gave word to Apple about its eminent demise and so Apple withheld paying $130m it owes to this company. Also. The owner of this company took the liberty of divesting his shares in the company weeks before the announcement of bankruptcy. How does a company that supplies for one of the world most profitable companies go bankrupt? Other than bad management (which is the norm for most corporations today) this company probably did like Icarus. Yeah, fly to high to the sun with wax wings, baby. But none of that matters now. The company can file for bankruptcy which is just another part of the socialism for the rich that so many American’t suckers play while they stand in their voting booths trying to figure out why the voting computer in front of them really looks like an old pacman game. Or something like that.
Oh, dear worst-reader, here yet another exchange I recently had with a dear old friend. As you know, from other exchanges (here and here), sometimes we get places–intellectual places. But other times we just ramble on. The point is, ramble, worst-writer. Yeah, that’s the point. Anywho. I know you’re probably wondering if any of this is actually real. It could, obviously, just as well, be played out in my mind. Obviously. As I sit each wasted day, lingering in my demise and lusting in my failure, it is hard not to talk to myself. But that is neither here nor there. What’s important is that I’ve managed, thru therapy and other self-medicating means, to stop having these conversations in the bathroom and in front of the mirror. Or something like that. So here we go. Oh. Before I forget. This worst-works best if you start at the bottom. Rant on, baby. And good luck.
Dear Old Friend,
Well, then, I guess that about covers it. No good answers. (Even though I provided a pretty good one.) Nomatter. As usual, let’s pack it up then and go to the mall.
Good stuff. So there are no real current answers. Maybe this is a place to throw some billions of those newly printed Fed Dollars. Invest in what it takes to move commerce to some “network” and open the “internet” to what it should be.
Your Old Friend
Dear Old Friend,
You have an interesting idea with ‘central registry’ but it’s not feasible at the IP level. I also wouldn’t trust a central repository of that kind of data–hence that’s why the Internet evolved like it did. Perhaps here we are back at a point you made a while ago, something about inventing a new Internet. Btw, the .com or .net or .gov, etc., domains are not constructed to manage information the way you’re suggesting. DHCP and DNS are already stretched to their limits. There are simply too many users of the Internet today and too many internet addresses to turn all that upside-down. The solution to privacy is much simpler, in fact. For one, the issue of privacy doesn’t start with Internet users or internet addresses–even though there is encryption. The whole problem is nothing more than law-makers in collusion with corporations–both trying to guarantee profits before anything else. So the solution is Net Neutrality. Making it illegal for cellular carriers to own cellular data would be a place to start. Making it illegal for ISPs to monopolize Internet access is another place to start. Also, it should be illegal for the government, without a due process (a warrant) to see where I’ve been on the Internet. And I should have the right to determine what information Google, Apple, ISP, etc., is allowed to keep from my Internet usage. As far as anonymous payment is concerned, PayPal is a no-go. Paypal emulates banks. Bitcoin and/or crypto-currency is the answer and it already scares the shit out of the status-quo. Combine crypto-currency with Torrent technology and you can over-ride the open-ness of the Internet when needed. Btw, the thing holding back Bitcoin right now is it’s complexity. I equate this somewhat to the complexity of the Gold standard (not Gold, persay, but the established Gold standard that Nixon got rid of). Bitcoin is gold. Someone will eventually turn it into a gold standard and then that standard will be superseded by something else, which is where we are today with monetary policy. But the thing with Bitcoin, or, more importantly, crypto-currency, is that no one can own the so-called blockchain or the way the codes is generated to create value, i.e. no central bank. Or maybe not. I still need to give that some more thought.
Yea I see your point. Now every social media to commerce site needs all this personal information just to allow access. Then hackers steal it.
So why don’t you propose a “central registry” like the folks who house the .xyz databases. The central registry will have the necessary identification credentials for every participant. Then you get a user id number, like an IP number that IS your permanent internet identity, just a number. Every transaction you make or what ever you do, simply uses this number, which for monitory purposes can be linked to the central registry, where your preferred payment solution/s are stored. You could choose bitcoin or a credit card or a debit system or some virtual currency like a paypal account. Whatever you want.
Anyway, then all companies are off the hook, nobody knows who you are, all transactions are antonymous and only subpoena for a particular suspected criminal event can get records, which incidentally are all encrypted.
Your Old Friend
Dear Old Friend,
I agree with “the Internet was never meant to handle secure transactions.” But I do not agree with “nor (does the Internet) preserve an individuals privacy.” When I first started using the Internet the multitude of ISPs alone enabled a level of security that most can’t even comprehend today. The problem therefore is the consolidation of Internet access. Whether I used Compuserve or some local German ISP back in 1994 that was routed through some guys basement server, my identity was never part of Internet access. I remember my first purchase on the internet, too. I bought a CD with a Linux install from the US. I was probably using Compuserve at the time and an analogue modem. Without having to register with the website (which is standard today) that was selling what I wanted, I just gave them my (German) credit card info and within ten days I got my CD (and had a blast trying to figure out how to install Linux on one of my old Macs). Anyway. The Internet could easily provide secure identity and privacy but users do not insist on it and because of that politicians have answered the beck and call of corporations to NOT make laws protecting privacy. Privacy could actually be easy.
Well it is still called a “crises” but I liked this point:
The Internet was never meant to handle secure transactions, nor preserve an individual’s privacy. Our rush to leverage the Internet for legit commerce has spawned marginally ethical business ventures while also creating vast criminal opportunities. (Links have been removed to protect the innocent.)
Ok, so is somebody actually saying what is obvious for a change?
Your Old Friend
What about those moments where it’s no longer a matter of being confused about crying or laughing? I worst-mean, on the one hand this was bound to happen: a lesbian couple fulfilling a dream but only to wake up to that dream’s reality. On the other, I’m laughing my ass off at a society/world where it is proven every day that litigation and profiting from it has no boundaries. In a world run amok due to human ignorance and miswant there is (can be) no hope nor fate and all that’s left is the reality you create because you can’t survive without 1) consuming and 2) living a/your life ruled by feelings… Well, this is what you get in that chaos. What a shame, what a shame. So much rigamarole and the ill-miracle of a child that must grow up in it–perpetuating even further the whole mess. Or something like that. Rant on.