Monday, November 17, 2014

Coffee Liqueur

I've frozen myself, my lesser parts
I remember years of being whole
An animal in a society

I've collared and perfumed myself now
There is a way to look, I do

Partitioned, a figure
The orators have perfected

Having established a character,
Honeys have drained
from geometry and frames

All I remember are the caves
of an ancestor
of my mission
-ary present,
Vacuous since they were flooded out--
Graves of a softer man's blood

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Re: Secret 1,062

I read an interesting post on RU Secrets about somebody struggling with their gender identity.  This was my response, before I realized it was too long to put on facebook:

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Talking makes me sad, and this might be why

Today it hit me like a brick, what might possibly be why I'm always so depressed by online discussions (whether they're actually charged or not).

I come from a youth of arguing online about topics that were really emotional for me.  In those arguments, I was often indignant and aggressive.  (It was justified, but that's not really important right now)

Now, my instinct in online ideological debates, my instinct is to be indignant and aggressive.  I temper that aggressive energy to come up with, uh, somewhat coherent sentences.

I had awful depression last year that SSRIs straight up cured.  So I know that I had a shortage of serotonin.  Higher levels of serotonin means you're happier, and it independently means you're less aggressive.  Less serotonin = more aggressive + less happy.

So serotonin limits aggression and causes happiness.  Happiness, like other emotions, is the feeling that you get as a consequence of having a certain chemical state - in this case, high levels of serotonin.  I had always assumed that aggressive behavior, then, would be the consequence of low levels of serotonin.

Well, today I had a depressive vibe wash over me, and I thought about what I was doing directly before I felt that way.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Animal Testing Might Do Something!

Since I've decided to stop advocating animal rights, I felt that I should learn about the benefits of current uses of animals in our economy.

First mission:  research whether animal testing is effective.  It was hard to find objective information, because most of it comes from PETA-like bands of simpletons who couldn't tell you the difference between ethanol and petroleum.  I kept seeing the statistic that 92% of drugs that pass animal testing fail human trials, but that seemed like it was impossible.  And I'm always wary of numbers that don't come from a reputable agency, like our government. (Yes, I'm going to assume that the government is reputable.)

After scouring various webpages about animal liberation and hippie conspiracies, I finally found a solid article, written by a highly esteemed professor at London's National Institute for Medical Research, that purported to debunk the importance of this statistic.  Thankfully, it referenced the original FDA Report on the "Critical Path" towards Medical Products, which had the number I was looking for:

"...a new medicinal compound entering Phase 1 testing, often representing the culmination of upwards of a decade of preclinical screening and evaluation, is estimated to have only an 8 percent chance of reaching the market."

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Hope, Despair, and Something Far Stronger

As silly as it sounds, I've been viewing a lot of my life through the lens of an anime about magical girls.

Really, I know, it sounds silly, but hear me out.

Gen Urobuchi is a writer who likes to use the medium of anime to express his stories.  He has worked with a few different animation studios on a very diverse set of topics.  Because he uses anime, he's expected to follow certain really stupid conventions.  One of the popular genres of the medium is the magical girl show.  They're usually unrealistically bubbly, and downplay the immense amount of danger these girls would be in if they were literally fighting destructive, immaterial monsters that defy the laws of our dimension.  For whatever reason, Gen thought that this particular genre needed a deconstruction, and so he made a show about magical girls that explores a lot of very interesting themes, trapping a viewer expecting something carefree in an intensely beautiful narrative of raw character development:  Puella Magi Madoka Magica.

As it stands in production, Madoka went through a 12-episode television series and a movie sequel, titled "The Rebellion Story".  I highly recommend the series to anybody who's intelligent, likes hefty literature, or appreciates fine art.  Since most people in those categories won't have already seen it, I'll avoid spoiling the plot.  What I want to do is simply to frame my own introspection in a way that those who've watched Madoka up to "The Rebellion Story" will recognize as familiar.  To those unfamiliar with the narrative, it should make enough sense on its own.

Thursday, March 20, 2014


I recently watched Kara no Kyoukai, and I took a few things away from it.  I'd like to discuss one of them in-depth here.  It's the one thing that my friend also found an interesting part of the fiction's metaphysics.  That fact is probably the reason I myself thought about it, especially in conjunction with other trains of thought that I've been exploring recently.


Sunday, March 2, 2014

Pronunciation of Doge

I will always pronounce doge "doggy".  Forever.

The only alternative pronunciation that I will ever use is an occasional "doggeh"

A "do͡uʒ" is an elected chief of state lordship.

A "dɔgi" or "dɔgɛ" is a silly little shibe.

Huge difference.

CNN thinks they know it all...

But in all honesty, it's really silly to see anybody proclaiming that there's one true pronunciation that everybody should use.  The word started orthographically, and it was supposed to be a misspelling of the word dog.  Nobody in existence on the planet (a qualifier I'm obviously qualified to use) has ever referred to a canine with a word that contains a voiced alveopalatal fricative.  That would just be silly.  Why are people using that phoneme now?


Thursday, February 20, 2014

A Little Silence

I realized recently that I'm going about this whole social thing all wrong.  I'm going to spend some time off of facebook to think about how I portray myself and what I say to people in social situations.  I have a feeling that my feelings are not necessarily the best thing to talk about.  The things that are most important to me are irritating and trivial to most other people, so my indignant protests and pleas for justice will only rub people the wrong way.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

We're Fighting Oppression in Exactly the Wrong Way

I think I've identified why I feel so uncomfortable saying that I'm a feminist, why I don't feel right when I talk about how white privilege is so harmful.  It presumes that the problem with sexism is sexism, whereas the problem with sexism is oppression.

Racism is not the problem, oppression is the problem.
Sexism is not the problem, oppression is the problem.
Religious discrimination is not the problem, oppression is the problem.
Speciesism is not the problem, oppression is the problem.

For every victory that any particular cause achieves (civil rights, gender equality), another oppressed group loses that much solidarity and momentum, and their plight will become that much more difficult.  The only way for the oppressed to unilaterally find justice is for the oppressed to stand against the *concept* of oppression, by understanding why it exists at all--not why it exists on spectra of gender, race, or religion.  Until we finally address the root of all discrimination and hate, we'll simply sever the ties between the different groups of oppressed people.  Those with less influence will continue to be oppressed, and the formerly oppressed groups will continually fail to recognize that the oppression was not only their own.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014


Exploitation isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Sure, it has a sour aftertaste and it's appalling to think about.  But people's aversion to funding companies that exploit cheap labor is, I would argue, not morally substantiable.

I want to end poverty in the world.  That's my first priority when it comes to economic policy.  I don't want fairness, I want everybody to have their living essentials paid for, and I want everybody to have equal access to big bucks for hard work.  If the way to do that is through rigorously meritocratic socialism, then so be it.  If the way to do that is through pure democratic communism, I'd be good with that too.  I just don't like that people have to suffer with poverty.  It's a blemish on human civilization, and it's wrong for us to let people suffer at the hands of our society's normal activities.

For this reason, I have an open mind when it comes to the issue of cheap labor.  I'm not strongly espoused to the opinion I have, whereas I strongly believe in the values I based this opinion on (universal freedom from poverty).  I'm no economist; nor are most people who have strong opinions on the matter of whether it's right to patronize companies that outsource to countries where citizens are willing to work for cheap.  And I think that the dialogue is largely misinformed bullshit.

The conclusion that I've come to after thinking about the big picture is this: