ESSAYS OF MY SOCIOLOGICAL IMAGINATION & OTHER MUSINGS

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"perpetual spirals of power and pleasure"
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The Hive Mind community project came out of a desire to organize across different political and cultural spaces in the city, in order to create an intentional community in which the personal and the political constantly and seamlessly intersect, and which integrates both political education and artistic creation. This goal eventually manifested in August of 2013 as an intentional gathering combining live art and art displays, spiritual & contemplative practices, and several group discussions exploring culture and social justice issues. This first Hive Mind was organized by Albert Dwan and Bluelette Alba with the collaboration of many different community members who volunteered to introduce discussion topics, lead workshops, bring food, and provide entertainment (music, fire art, live-painting, etc.). The main goal of the gathering was for community participation, and was that goal what made Hive Mind so valuable in people’s mind. The venue for it being at artist & entrepreneur Eddie Bee’s home in Druid Heights fittingly gave it a very intimate, community feel which allowed the gathering to evolve organically and freely throughout the time of the event.

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Hive Mind Revolution was the second gathering following the same intention of further exploring the synergy between art, activism, culture and politics and it took place on Saturday, February 8th. Organized by a small group of young activists and visionaries including Albert and Bluelette, along with Jamie Coyne, Andrew Mattingly (residents of the home), Robin Gunkel— and other main volunteers and planners (Jerry Raitzyk, Summer Blake, and Brice Lankford) Hive Mind Revolution followed the semi-structured, open-format blueprint of the first event that took place back in August 2013, and which included a potluck, discussions, workshops, and an open mic.

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Hive Mind One Year Later: Reflections on Revolution 

-cultural transformation in Baltimore City

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OVERVIEW from Planetary Collective on Vimeo.

Actual evidence shows the Nordic model works
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thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
thepeoplesrecord:

Rest in power, Mike Brown. 
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fuckyeahmarxismleninism:

Ferguson, Missouri: Protesters march with raised hands, chanting “Don’t shoot! Don’t shoot!" Militarized pigs fire off tear gas or some kind of smoke producing chemical weapons to disperse protesters. Occupation forces target community members walking through a parking lot. This video shows it all: http://youtu.be/FLI2PDNA5eM
Larry Hales: “Wish we all had the courage of the brave people in Ferguson.”
#FergusonShooting
#JusticeforMikeBrown
fuckyeahmarxismleninism:

Ferguson, Missouri: Protesters march with raised hands, chanting “Don’t shoot! Don’t shoot!" Militarized pigs fire off tear gas or some kind of smoke producing chemical weapons to disperse protesters. Occupation forces target community members walking through a parking lot. This video shows it all: http://youtu.be/FLI2PDNA5eM
Larry Hales: “Wish we all had the courage of the brave people in Ferguson.”
#FergusonShooting
#JusticeforMikeBrown
fuckyeahmarxismleninism:

Ferguson, Missouri: Protesters march with raised hands, chanting “Don’t shoot! Don’t shoot!" Militarized pigs fire off tear gas or some kind of smoke producing chemical weapons to disperse protesters. Occupation forces target community members walking through a parking lot. This video shows it all: http://youtu.be/FLI2PDNA5eM
Larry Hales: “Wish we all had the courage of the brave people in Ferguson.”
#FergusonShooting
#JusticeforMikeBrown
fuckyeahmarxismleninism:

Ferguson, Missouri: Protesters march with raised hands, chanting “Don’t shoot! Don’t shoot!" Militarized pigs fire off tear gas or some kind of smoke producing chemical weapons to disperse protesters. Occupation forces target community members walking through a parking lot. This video shows it all: http://youtu.be/FLI2PDNA5eM
Larry Hales: “Wish we all had the courage of the brave people in Ferguson.”
#FergusonShooting
#JusticeforMikeBrown
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But in its drive to create equal opportunities for women in the workforce, liberal feminism helped to sustain the devaluation of certain types of work—namely the work of bearing and raising children and overseeing the domestic realm. While middle-class housewives left the home to find their place in the office, they failed to challenge the distinction between work that merits fair wages and work that does not. In order to pursue the path of the career woman, many housewives hired women from less privileged demographics to fill their old roles as poorly compensated labourers in the home. Dismantling the role of housewife by choosing to seek fulfilling work elsewhere didn’t abolish the need for underpaid or unpaid domestic work. Rather, this work-for-equality movement served to further conceal the fact that the exploitation of women’s work is integral to oppressive social and economic relations.

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Nearly forty years later, the young intern who finds herself willing and able to volunteer her time out of love for her work resembles those happy housewives of the past. It is worth noting that the internship is always temporary. Unlike the housewife, the cheerful intern is vaguely promised fair wages in some not-so-distant future. In the words of its advocates, unpaid training is yet another stepping-stone toward independence, a necessary extension of one’s education. But the truth is that unpaid internships perpetuate a gate-keeping mechanism that ensures only financially stable and well-connected young people can grab onto the bottom rung of the ladder. What’s more, Ross Perlin writes in Intern Nation, this “race to the bottom” ultimately determines whether specific tasks are in fact worthy of monetary compensation: “Every time young people scramble for an unpaid position, they reinforce the flawed perception that certain kinds of work have lost all value.”

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Office Wives
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Moreover, by encouraging us to be anxious about open conflict, liberalism actually masks how today’s political debate obscures as much as highlights our differences.

Recoiling from the screaming and name-calling, liberals point to conflict-oriented infotainment as toxic to the public discourse. Yet because they are so distracted by the surface noise, they miss the undisturbed bedrock of consensus positions.

In debates about poverty policy, for example, liberals often do push back against the nearly sociopathic desire of conservatives to destroy the welfare state . If you really want to fight poverty, they insist, you need to help folks get back on the job, not leave them at the mercy of circumstance.

Remaining undisturbed, however, is the assumption that the solution to poverty is to push as many poor people as possible into the job market — to “fix” poor folks rather than restructure the economic institutions that place them in such a quagmire. The fact that this charade of a debate often involves yelling creates the illusion that a fundamental difference is being discussed — but it’s merely the means that are being disputed.

At the same time, identifying fundamental disagreements that do exist becomes extremely difficult when one cannot even name what is being struggled over — power. For at the root of the liberal denial of conflict is the liberal denial of power. And on this falsehood, all attempts to honestly confront conflict run afoul.

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Why I’m Not a Liberal
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It’s just the daily assault of sexism that leaves me, for one, profoundly disturbed. The so-called trickle-down effect of porn into our culture is now nothing less than a tsunami and I would argue that we’re in a state of emergency, or a human rights scandal as Amnesty International says – and boundaries of acceptability no longer exist.

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The rise of the sex industry in the Eighties and Nineties mean porn and prostitution is respectable to an unprecedented degree in human history and hence the infiltration of the sex-industry into the work-place and media. We are in a culture that relentlessly sexualises women. Selling sex acts is like making a cappuccino. 75 per cent of prostitutes started selling sex acts before the age of 18 and were abused in childhood. 70 per cent in England have spent time in care. In a study of 110 men in Glasgow two-thirds had attitudes that were tolerant to rape. 22 per cent said that once they had paid, it wasn’t possible to rape a prostitute .

If porn is filmed prostitution, then our media is PORNIFIED and as porn has become more relentlessly violent and aggressive, the prevailing attitude is “they like it when it hurts”. It eroticises the dominance of men over women. Millions of women’s lives are caught up in stripping porn and prostitution. It is an epidemic. 88 per cent of pornographic scenes that men masturbate to contain physically aggressive acts towards women – slapping, gagging, choking, amongst many others. 68 per cent of women in prostitution have post-traumatic stress disorder as a direct result of the work they do.

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Porn is everywhere. Girls say they feel embarrassed, awkward – does it affect their idea of sex? Shaving pubic hair, getting breast implants, requesting labial surgery seems to say yes. Girls may feel that they are expected to be treated as sex-objects, and that they just have to live with it. Explicit material is way too accessible and the extreme has become normal. Rape is OK. When I spoke to my daughter about this – she was about 16 at the time – it became clear that of her generation, who have been so exposed to so much hardcore material, quite a few of her peer group were saying they were “bisexual” for safety, as if they felt they were expected to perform some of what they had seen. The links in the media, and on TV, to abuse in the playground and then straight to domestic abuse is NOT DIFFICULT TO SEE. School is the most common setting for sexual harassment. Humiliating and degrading girls at an early age is commonplace, and sexist bullying an integral art of school life. Anti- sexism activist and filmmaker Byron Hurt says that feminism is the solution to countering the masochistic culture which is so prevalent amongst young people in London and leads to the terrifying knife crime that kills mostly black boys. “Men are drip-fed through media, religion, sport, family, culture, porn, prostitution and TV to devalue, exploit and stereotype women and girls. Men are in denial about the level of violence against women.”

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Rape isn’t entertainment, it’s a never-more pressing outrage that is not to be enjoyed with a glass of Merlot and a few cheese straws as you watch your “edgy” TV drama. There are more refuges, more sexual assaults and women are now seen as sex objects on an unprecedented scale.

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This is a small cry, a call to arms. Anyone who has been awakened to the unprecedented violence against women in our culture, take your own personal steps and say ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

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Enough is enough: from TV’s “crime porn” to endemic violence, the assault on women has to stop