This last week I’ve really noticed how relaxed I feel. Getting out of a work system that just pulls everything out of you made a big difference. I sleep deeper and wake up more energized. There are certain things to feel anxious about, and some items on our list have big question marks on them. I guess I just feel like if we stay level-headed, we can work through them and move with ease. I’ve taken to manage my anxiety in ways that are simple and helpful. I’ve been setting many alarms for online classes or tasks I need to do that are scheduled. Before, my brain would fixate on the appointment and basically keep me from doing anything else out of a fear of being late. With the alarms on my phone, I just relax, knowing it will go off when I need to be ready. I think so much of our society is built around keeping people on edge all the time, and we need to break free from that.
Also, the new podcast episode is up with our Top 5 Films of 1996 and a review of Disney’s Cruella. Give it a listen!
Here’s this week’s Spotify playlist. I really love these songs and have been listening to them a lot.
Ariana is planning on joining the blog with some reviews and other pieces. I’m excited to have her on board. She would probably tell me to stop, but I am going to brag a little. She’s an award-winning blogger, having written for the tabletop roleplay blog ConTessa. The blog was run by a group of women & non-binary people interested in getting new voices in the hobby. Ariana won an Ennie for some pieces she wrote for them, and I think bringing her voice to the blog will be a great fresh addition. Now, she likely won’t post at the level I do, churning out posts almost daily. But that will be made up for in the quality of her work. I guarantee her writing will be the crown jewels of this blog. Keep an eye out for them soon!
Getting close to finishing up Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States. I came across a Twitter post where someone talked about the book being commonly read in high schools and universities. I assume they must be from a different region of the country because this book would likely never be assigned at any public school I know of. I finished the chapter on the Nixon/Ford era, and I loved Zinn’s take on it. He spends very little time engaging in discourse on the Watergate investigations. Instead, he spends the chapter spotlighting how the establishment was more than happy to put the impetus on Nixon rather than make it transparent that Nixon was taking part in a system that was & still is drenched in corruption. Zinn points out the numerous instances in which Henry Kissinger pushed for the illegal bombing of Cambodia. He also shows how the mainstream media was more than happy to provide cover for imperialism.
Nixon was undoubtedly a scumbag, but just like Trump, they showcase how Americans need something to be blunt in its evil. As a society, we are not so good at noticing subtle evil, atrocities hidden by a smile, and charismatic speeches. I believe that every American president was/is guilty of war crimes but that they are also not entirely in charge of the entirety of the system. The institutions that rule over the United States will use the media to push villains so that our attention never focuses for too long on the built-in nature of oppression and submission. You have every right to be infuriated with Joe Manchin or Kristen Sinema, but remember that role of the rotating villain was played by Joe Lieberman at the start of Obama’s presidency. They always find at least one or two people to stand in the way of progress. Additionally, the Republicans have the same thing with Lisa Murkowski or Susan Collins, though they often tow the party line when it matters.
America’s fixation on individualism is what keeps workers from finding solidarity and corrupt institutions in power. I’m coming to believe that these modes of thinking, ingrained in us with relentless propaganda from our childhood and continuing on, are impassable for the foreseeable future. People are so psychologically & emotionally broken down that they cling to their escapism, shoving their heads in the sand as a survival mode. I can’t blame them, but I also refuse to sit here and let the money I earn & my presence as part of the population be used to manufacture consent and fund wars. America is a twilight nation; it won’t last in this form for much longer. I believe it will become much, much worse. Once I’m established in another country, I hope to aid others who want to leave and get set up if they move to our corner of the world. It’s the kind of solidarity that can save those of us that aren’t willing to keep engaging in cycles of insanity.