Posts by Angela

1) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1896258)
Posted 1 day ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
jmercer, I am happy to know that your area of the country is ahead of the game in helping people to overcome barriers and rise from poverty. That is awesome!

You, personally, have backed up your words with your MOST precious commodity, time, (and probably also with your money), in an effort to help equalize the playing field. Not everyone who talks about "choices" and "trying" has done what you have done. So please do not take the following personally. You have my admiration and my respect.

But the words "I will help those that 'try ' to help them selves. I will not support those that do not try." absolutely terrify me.

"Try" is such a loaded word. What constitutes "trying"? Who gets to define what is "trying" and what is "not trying"?

Does graduating from a job training program, but not being able to find work count as trying?

Does working two part time un-benefitted jobs, only to find yourself still falling behind on the rent and being on the verge of eviction count as trying?

Does personally walking your kids to school every day because your neighborhood is unsafe count as trying?

Does some Congress Critter attempting to tie benefits and assistance to "trying" get to define that word for all of us?

Do you get to define it? Do I?

Is any of us qualified to operationally define "trying" in the context of another person's life?

Probably not.

Only John Doe and Jane Doe and George Doe know whether or not they are "trying". I certainly have no personal insight into how many daily challenges and barriers to accessing help and achieving success John, Jane and George attempt to over-come each day.

(I'm sure right now many people are saying, "That darn Angela sure is trying. She is very, very trying indeed!!!")

Peace on Earth, my friend.
2) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1896165)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
... Maybe they thought that if it was posted on social media - the humiliation and shame wouldn't be theirs, but ours.

Beautifully said.
3) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1896159)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
Now for Jane, She has to want to break the cycle. I believe that where there is the will there is a way out.

Let us assume for a moment that nobody actually WANTS to live in poverty.



Here are some obvious challenges Jane faces as she attempts to break the cycle of poverty.

1. Jane probably has a high school diploma. The job she will most likely get is a minimum wage service sector job. Without government assistance it would be very difficult to support a family on a single, service sector income.

2. Who will care for Jane's children when she is at work? At her service sector job, she is unlikely to earn enough money to pay for good quality childcare for her children.

3. How will she handle transportation costs to and from her job? Does she have an old car that is a money-sink in constant need of repair? Is she is going to work via public transit, which costs money and eats up time?

4. How long will Jane be able to keep her job if she has to take time off whenever one of her kids is sick and cannot attend daycare, or whenever there is a plumbing emergency in her home, or whenever her very old car will not start?

5. What happens to Jane and her children if she earns just enough money to lose free healthcare benefits for her family and gets "bumped up" into a level of partially subsidized healthcare benefits? How will she handle those additional costs with all the other demands on her income?

Oh I know some readers of this thread will have many many answers for how Jane will surmount all of these challenges, but I would argue that the cumulative toll from all of these challenges would make breaking the cycle of poverty very, very, very difficult for Jane, or really for any one of us. I am not made of steel. I am not exceptional in any way. Were I in Jane's shoes, I'm pretty darn sure I would not be able to better myself without substantial levels of support.


Example for four years in the early 90s I help put together a 501 (C) 3 organization with United Way agency number. We helped the needy for over four years and then passed it on the next group of volunteers. In that time, I found out that we were one of over 35 organizations just in our county alone. State has 100s. In my area, the help is there but folks have to want to be helped.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
It is wonderful that you have worked so hard to make your community a better place for people who are under-resourced and under-served. I thank you, I salute you and I admire you.

The true answer to Jane's problems is to try and prevent them in the first place - improve public education, financially support families in need, give Jane job opportunities that will excite her and encourage her to defer having a family until she is more independent.

Thank you for the impact you have had on your community, especially in the area of poverty prevention. Thank you for being a social justice warrior!
4) Message boards : Cafe SETI : Raccoon Update XXIV - All Are Welcome In The Critter Cafe (Message 1896155)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
Hehehe, love it. Do Raccoons stash any food away as not having the winters we do I would have thought there was no need?

No. Raccoons do not stash food away. They eat everything in sight right away. Impulse control is not one of their cognitive strengths.
5) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1896083)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
...You sound like my stepfather. ...

I am both humbled and flattered that I sound like someone who must have had a profoundly positive influence on your life. Thank you!!!


I am enjoying this discussion, but I am a tiny bit confused. I think we may be on roughly the same page, but please correct me if I am wrong.

Allow me to recap:

1. I posted a video that was essentially about privilege.

2. You posted a dissenting article that claimed that privilege (or lack there of) all comes down to our choices and/or the choices of our ancestors. You wrote that the article "sums up my feelings better than I can."

To quote from your article:
When I see this video I essentially see someone glossing over all those hard choices and difficult experiences that made it possible for many of those kids to have advantages in life. And yes, it also glosses over the poor choices of the some of the parents who didn’t stick around for their kids.


3. I voiced concern that "choices" are not really choices if there are overwhelming odds that you will go one way and not another, based on your circumstances and opportunities. For example, if there was a 0.00000001% chance of me having a baby at age 16 and a 99.9999999% chance of me going to college, I simply do not get to take credit for making "good choices." The odds were stacked in my favor. These were not "hard choices" or "difficult experiences" for me. These were pretty much inevitable paths, given my life circumstances and opportunities.

While I agree with you that these so called "choices" can "make or break us directly and or indirectly" am I correct in assuming that perhaps we agree more than we disagree, and that perhaps that article you originally posted is now not quite nuanced enough to adequately sum up your feelings about the video?


The reason I am absolutely harping on this is that the statement "it is all about choices" can so easily be used to punish and oppress people.

For example, one might argue that John Doe, a smoker, is undeserving of first class, affordable healthcare because he made a "bad choice" to smoke. But if John Doe grew up in a home with parents who smoked, John was far more likely to become a smoker himself.

In another example, one might argue that Jane Doe, a single mother, is undeserving of aid for her family because she made a "bad choice" to have children she could not afford. But if Jane Doe grew up in an impoverished single parent home, Jane was far more likely to become an impoverished single parent herself. And depriving her family of much needed funds only makes it more likely that her children will continue the cycle of poverty.

In yet another example (see what I mean by "harping"!!!) one might argue that George Doe, a 16 year old gang member convicted of a violent crime, deserves to rot in prison for the rest of his young life because he made the "bad choice" of joining a gang and participating in their violent activities. But if George Doe grew up in poverty, in a community riddled by violence, with an absent father and a drug addicted mother, George was far more likely to idealize gang life, use gang leaders as role models, and not fully understand the impact and ramifications of his violent actions.

If this is what makes you nervous when people start talking about "choices", then we are really both on the same page.
6) Message boards : Cafe SETI : TLPTPHW #266 (Message 1896076)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
ebay promptly refunded My account, I then bought 2 surge protectors from 2 different sellers, and I still have $3.13 left, so I didn't have a really bad day at least.

What happens if that thing you bought shows up in tomorrow's mail?

The local US Post Master said it's unlikely to get here, as did ebay tonight, item never marked as shipped by the seller, seller had no sales after mine, seller was selling a device for the US, yet the seller was supposedly in Australia, ebay time of cancellation is on October 19th 2017, which is what it is there now. Amount fully refunded, I'd tried to contact the seller before this, but with no success, so this is a finished matter to Me.

Ok, but if it shows up, do let us know!

I have lots of faith in people, so it is hard for me to think you were scammed. It takes a long time for things to get to the US from Australia.
7) Message boards : Cafe SETI : TLPTPHW #266 (Message 1896069)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
ebay promptly refunded My account, I then bought 2 surge protectors from 2 different sellers, and I still have $3.13 left, so I didn't have a really bad day at least.

What happens if that thing you bought shows up in tomorrow's mail?
8) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1896064)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
jmercer, thank you also for your thoughtful feedback, but please don't be "done."

You are welcome Angela.

I am done defending my opinion to antagonist, that’s all.

But to the author of that article I say: if one focuses primarily on choice-making, one is at risk of missing or dismissing social inequities that stack the odds for and against any one of us making choices - good ones or bad ones.

That sounds like uninformed choice making to me. An informed choice would take into account inequities and equities.



Got it! I'm glad you are still in the discussion.

I just get so worried when people start talking about "good" vs "bad" choices, without considering variables that can drive choice-making and without realizing that it is possible for people to sometimes not have any "good" options at all. Sometimes all a person can do is choose between "bad" vs "worse".

I have been fortunate from cradle to present, and my good fortune will probably last me to my grave. My life circumstances and my life opportunities made it overwhelmingly unlikely that I would have "chosen" to have a baby at age 16. That would have been a "bad choice" by most measures and there was about a 0.00000001% chance of me making that "choice". On the other hand, another woman's life circumstances and life opportunities might make it overwhelmingly likely for her to "choose" to have a baby at 16... or at least not do much to actively prevent having a baby, and we ALL know how that ends. I would argue that neither of us has really made a "choice".

Good fortune tends to lead to more good fortune. That doesn't mean there isn't opportunity for the next generation to blow it! It just means the odds are in their favor that they won't.

Bad fortune, without intervention, can lead to more bad fortune. That doesn't mean that people cannot rise from horrible circumstances! It just means that the odds are less likely they will.

That is why I get nervous when people start talking about "choices".
9) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1896043)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
Wow, Now dAts a MYTH. Supportive Parents. So Miniscule, as to be-NO SUCH THING.

With apologies to my sainted parents, may they rest in peace, I actually agree with you. I would not know how to operationally define the word "supportive" in the context of parenting.

I think that most parents try to do the very best they can for their children, but it generally takes more than that to win $100.
10) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1896041)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
Oh my! I did not think this video would spark the controversy that it has.

Sirius, I understand your point and I truly hope that these young people gave written consent to their participation in this social experiment and written consent for it to be posted to social media. Thank you for your thoughtful feedback.

jmercer, thank you also for your thoughtful feedback, but please don't be "done."

The author of the article you posted came across, at least to me, as someone who was possibly "done". The author was arguing that choices, whether yours or your parents, "matter". Yes, of course choices "matter". But to the author of that article I say: if one focuses primarily on choice-making, one is at risk of missing or dismissing social inequities that stack the odds for and against any one of us making choices - good ones or bad ones.

Speaking only for myself of course, I try to guard against hyper-focusing on choice-making, especially in the absence of understanding the social factors that drive choice making. I fear that hyper-focusing on choice-making could potentially give me an excuse for being "done" with an individual... or far worse, an excuse for being "done" with a cultural group.

I never-ever-ever-ever-ever want to be "done".
11) Message boards : Cafe SETI : Raccoon Update XXIV - All Are Welcome In The Critter Cafe (Message 1896019)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
It's the time of year when they are burying food for the winter. The little buggers are digging up all our flower boxes and beds on the patio. Last year I made the mistake of buying squirrel food. All they did was dig holes and bury it. Not putting any out this year, unless a foot of snow.


LOL! Our California squirrels are too lazy to dig holes. I pulled out some spent rhubarb leaves the other day and found a squirrel cache of peanuts right underneath one of the leaves. No digging involved - just push the peanuts under a big leaf.
12) Message boards : Cafe SETI : Raccoon Update XXIV - All Are Welcome In The Critter Cafe (Message 1896018)
Posted 2 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
Ang, the offer to help with the garage is still open!

On an other matter, I like to pay it forward. After WW2 my family send care packets to Poland. I would like to help with regards to a family in or around Arecibo. Can you or Eric put me in touch with someone? Flat rate shipping via USPS makes this a great deal.



Hi Uli,

What a kind offer! The best way to help, however, it to make a donation to the Red Cross and earmark it for Puerto Rico relief.

Thanks!
13) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1895778)
Posted 4 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
I believe the line that offended you was:

"...I guarantee some of these black dudes would smoke all of you."

I do not find that comment, in context of this $100 race, to be offensive. Use of the word "some" vs use of the word "all" keeps it from being a racist comment, in my opinion.

I listened to the words again and did not hear the particular line you quoted, so perhaps it was in another version of this video, perhaps my ears are aging, or perhaps there has simply been a misunderstanding.
14) Message boards : Cafe SETI : Beet's Give us a Caption - number 67 (Message 1895735)
Posted 4 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
MODS............a new thread if you please.

Locking this thread, per request, so that the current contest winner can start a new one.
15) Message boards : Politics : 100 Dollar Race (Message 1895717)
Posted 4 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
If you have not yet seen this video, I think it is well worth watching and I think it deserves a wide audience.

There is some religious commentary at the end of the video, but of course one does not need to practice religion in order to understand and work for social justice.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G4ISwxxw0bU
16) Message boards : Cafe SETI : The Candy Confessional is open... (Message 1895572)
Posted 5 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
This thread is evil and apostasy,...


By PayDay decree,

I ordain all who post in this thread Acolytes of the Candy Faith. You may now all absolve one another.
17) Message boards : Cafe SETI : The Candy Confessional is open... (Message 1895393)
Posted 6 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
I also love Butterfingers, but they're murder on your teeth.

Thou shalt not kill.

Your candy sins are absolved. Go forth and spread the word of the Candy God.
18) Message boards : Cafe SETI : The Candy Confessional is open... (Message 1895392)
Posted 6 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
I hear their Siren Call... :-O

Give strong jelly babies to the one who is perishing, and pumpkin spiced lattes to those in bitter distress...

Your candy sins are absolved.
19) Message boards : Cafe SETI : The Candy Confessional is open... (Message 1895364)
Posted 7 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
I'm gaining weight just by looking at this thread..


Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.

Your candy sins are forgiven.
20) Message boards : Cafe SETI : The Candy Confessional is open... (Message 1895362)
Posted 7 days ago by Profile AngelaProject Donor
Post:
The dark chocolate ones are the best.


And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

Go forth rejoicing in the name of the Candy God, for you have been cleansed of your candy sins.


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