aaaaargZombies

aaaaargZombies wrote

Just to be clear.

  • I do not think these women deserve this sexist / ableist / ageist treatment.
  • I do not experience schadenfreude from reading this article.
  • I do wish we could build a culture that makes this unacceptable.
  • I am frustrated to see people who have spent years working for oppressive institutions recuperating anti-oppressive politics so that they can.... continue working for oppressive institutions.
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aaaaargZombies wrote

Sorry, I missed the part where aging women were super privilaged. I guess all that discrimination against older women is all fake news, huH?

I feel like you're the one doubling down, I made a pretty clear distinction about the women in the article and women in general. I did my best to answer your question. I feel like you're reading my response in bad faith now.

You completely doubled-down on justifying what type of woman we're allowed to discriminate against.

I never said it was OK to discriminate against them.

This is a sort of "'I never thought leopards would eat MY face" story. It's frustrating when people suddenly decide the world is unjust just at the point when it affects them. Maybe I'm just salty because the article opens with someone working for the civil service who have caused me and so many people I know nothing but misery.

What else should we not post?

I'm sorry if you read this as a personal attack, I really didn't mean to upset you.

I commented on the article but you said I was telling you what to post. I see how my response could be taken as insincere but it wasn't, it was just clumsy.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

Sorry, I missed the part where aging women were super privilaged. I guess all that discrimination against older women is all fake news, huH?

Not at all but the guardian skews to that demographic.

The first women they talk about works for the civil service here's a breakdown of what what sort of roles they cover. The largest, DWP, has over the last decade overseen the slashing of the welfare resulting in thousands of deaths, especially hard hit have been disabled people. I hope I don't have to explain why the ministry of defense, offender management, etc are not just normal office jobs.

One of the other women listed was a cop. fuck her.

They end with the women who took 5 years out of work on her savings to focus on her mental health. How do you accrue that amount of savings, I'm assuming neither of us will have that luxury when ill health strikes.

But I guess basic empathy doesn't count for people you decide aren't worthy of talking about?

I do empathize with them on this issue, but they (not older women in general) are also part of the problem.

What else should we not post?

I'm sorry if you read this as a personal attack, I really didn't mean to upset you.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

Although every individual experience in this article sounds terrible I am sick of articles like this one.

Fundamentally all these institutions are built to grind us into dust and toss us aside as soon as we are not useful. I am tired of relatively privileged sections of society thinking that they are the exception to the rule when suddenly confronted with the reality of the system they have been serving dutifully for decades.

Workplace bullying is endemic in these large institutions in the UK. It is an open secret that you will never be fired, your life will simply be made unlivable until you leave. This is in part due to the strange situation with unions in the UK. Large public bodies are the most unionised but most people regard them as an insurance provider, covering legal expenses if fired or injured at work. As such there is no sense of solidarity between union members / workmates that might make this sort of behavior culturally unacceptable.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

Ooooh what a thorny subject.

One of the issues with having a bunch of white dude experts is that you're elevating them to the status of expert over other people. The reality is that everyone has skills that they could share and you don't need to be an expert to help someone.

Likewise attending a series of workshops run by experts isn't really going to help you much if you don't have an interest in that skill and have a place to apply and develop it.

What I think works better is starting with a group of people, assessing what skills they want to develop then doing inter-group skillshares until you reach a ceiling. Then start to branch out and look for support. That way you are actually addressing people's needs and you stop being soley responsible for who ends up running workshops in the future. You also foster a culture of collaboration and support.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

I don't really have a FOMODA but I miss the intensity of bonds that these spaces bring and the autonomy from personnel / work commitments. I also think there's an aspect of people wanting to test themselves and have limit experiences, it's not always about suffering for "the cause", sometimes it's just about suffering.

I've had similar experiences when doing mutual aid with a group of people who were also largely dependent on that mutual aid. It was less about how can we help people and more about how can we survive in ways that open up possibilities for others to survive and help us too.

Tangent....

Marx has interesting things to say about this when framed as species essence and alienation of labor. He basically says that humans are the only animals that make art, or does labor that isn't contributing to our survival. But that under capitalism all labor becomes essential to survive as we must exchange it for wages to eat, be housed, etc. That this alienates us and denies us an essential part of our being. To work based on desire not need.

I think my experience was the opposite, when mutual aid was not linked to my survival it felt like a hobby or an afterthought. I couldn't connect with the people I was "helping". It certainly didn't feel creative or empowering for me or anyone else.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

I will say if you hope to meet smugglers they obviously have presence at places where people are trapped at borders and desperate.

This old zine - pdf from activists in Calais may be interesting reading for other Raddle users. Key section quoted below

The mafia are generally hostile to activists, since they need to maintain migrant dependency on them for profit.

In Calais, where we have sought to encourage migrant autonomy, the mafia clearly saw us as a threat. They exploited people's mistrust and fears as well as our language impediments in an attempt to damage relations. This included spreading rumours that we were working for the police, and telling people that female activists were prostitutes.

It is easy to brand all smugglers as exploitative, and many are. Though this is the prevailing image peddled by the corporate press, the situation is considerably more complex than this, and we should accept that there is a lot of information about which we are not aware.

Firstly, the distinction between 'migrants' and 'mafia' is a blurred and messy one. The mafia operates an underground economy that can be resorted to when people remain at the border too long and run out of money, since other economic avenues are shut off to them. The web of migrants and mafia means that there isn't a group of feared and violent individuals, but an assortment of ordinary and desperate people with varying degrees of involvement.

Secondly, the mafia have been highly successful in distorting political borders and undermining immigration control. They have experience and operate highly organised, fluid networks. They have continually evolved and survived in the face of attempts by the state to take out individuals.

This is not to romanticise them, but to call for a more nuanced understanding of who the smugglers are, and their critical role in irregular immigration.

Once they get to know you, they will probably no longer see you as much of a threat. Perseverance, and not behaving in ways that might make people suspect that you're a journalist or working for the police (ie; asking lots of questions or taking photos), should mean that most problems go away with time.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

I don't know anything about traveling in or out of Lebanon.

People I have met in Europe who have fled the middle east or Africa have done a variety of things, stowed away on the underside of lorries, inside lorries, bribed officials, walked over difficult terrain, I didn't meet anyone who had been by boat but clearly lots of people do but also lots of people die this way. The situation changes all the time and it is always hard to know what is a rumor and what is true. If people have been lucky they have found some sort of visa then overstayed or moved on from the place they got the visa. IE tourist visa to russia / ukraine makes for an easier route by car / foot into EU than from Turkey. Others have found work that has let them cross borders than abandoned the work when in a different country, truck driver, working on a ship etc.

Having said all that, life in the EU is not great for many "sans papiers", many people end up destitute or imprisoned in refugee camps / detention centres.

Fuck borders.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

I think you're best trying to talk as a household about what your boundaries are and what you need to feel comfortable in the house. Obviously being forced to get a vaccine that you don't think is safe by your housemates probably isn't going to fit very well with that but having an honest discussion about what everyone's concerns are and how you can all best work together to make everyone happy is the way forward.

A lot of group living issues can be more easily resolved when approached from the perspective of what is important to each party rather than which party is right on a certain issue. Perhaps if this person is willing to recognize the distress this is causing you and modify their behavior based on how it is making you feel rather than which youtube video they've watched you will have a better chance of reaching a compromise. The reverse is also going to be true if you can't navigate to a shared view on covid + vaccines.

If the ways you both want to live are irreconcilable then you probably shouldn't live together. This sounds like a very stressful living situation, I hope you can resolve it.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

In some ways I think post-workerism is a fine framing. It points to the way marxists fetishized certain forms of work as containing revolutionary potential which ignored so many other aspects of life.

On the other hand when I think about the usefulness of a framing like post-modernism - we no longer live in the context of modernity but it is a clear point in time which future contexts have been derived with no situation escaping it's influence. I think post-left is a very similar situation and it feels much more open ended. I understand your point about it having it's own baggage, that's always a difficult question about what ground to relinquish to who.

To some degree it feels like workerism is more of a recent and personal framing that is then projected back to derive a post-politics from. I'm not sure others would understand their politics as coming from a workerism tradition and so might struggle to join the dots.

There's a phrase often attributed to the mathematician George Box that I've found really useful when thinking about theory.

All models are wrong, some models are useful.

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aaaaargZombies wrote (edited )

1 - Hitching

It's the best and the worst. You meet loads of wonderful people from all walks of life who have gone out of their way to help you. Makes you feel like the world is a wonderful place. I've rarely waited for more than 30mins for a lift, sometimes I've been walking up the road to a layby that I thought would be a good place to wait and found someone has already pulled over and is waiting to pick me up.

Only sketchy ride I've had was with some really old guy who probably shouldn't have been driving anymore, would drift between lanes on the motorway without realizing... I've also been stuck in a place for a whole day in brutal sun, gave up and dodged the train fair the next day.

2 - Vehicle you live in

You're kind of already there but traveling at the same time. Changes the way you interact with places. You also don't split up the place you want to be and the place you're staying which is really cool, sometimes you end up with a situation that is better than if money was no object. Long drives are different, pull over and have proper food and a place to relax not some crap service station shit. Drive till you're tired, no worries about getting to a place by a certain time.

3 - Bike

Obviously limited as to what you can carry and how far you can go but it's wonderful locally. Build an intimate understanding of the place you're in, it's secret side streets, the shape of the land. Cycling round a city at night with a group of people is a strangely empowering feeling. Great for Mischief.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

I agree I just think it doesn't invalidate people trying to skirt restrictions on their autonomy and desires. Lets take the most extreme example hate crimes against women.

I genuinely thought you were going to launch into some rape apologia.

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aaaaargZombies wrote

To cut to the heart of the matter: is it ever really wrong simply to desire not to be emotionally dead?

I like this line.

I guess this is a sort of means and ends question isn't it. Should we try to build the relationships we want to live or try and steal moments of life while excepting shit relationships forever.

he [sic] violates the decrees of authoritarian convention and law, but in such a way that they remain in place

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aaaaargZombies wrote

  • Joy / Grief Not sure how to describe this exactly but there is an intensification of feeling when shared or jointly experienced with people in close relationships.
  • Consent but not just for sex.
  • Mutual Aid we are more than the sum of our parts.
  • Growth we are not the same people we were when we entered the relationship, we need to continue to assess our desires, needs, boundaries.
  • Affinity usually the basis of forming relationships for me. Could also be framed as shared desires.
  • Dogma I don't think there is a correct way to do a relationship. I'm not going to project what is good for me onto others.

I think these things apply to romantic and non-romantic relationships.

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