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My Feelings About The State of Israel and Palestine


So here is what I think of the Israel/Hamas/Palestinian eruption.

Right now, the issue is the attack by Hamas.  Cut away the complexity and depth of the longstanding controversy between Israel and Palestine and what is left is a vicious murderous attack on regular everyday people against the backdrop of at least temporal tranquility.  If there is a legitimate beef against Israel, the terroristic "tactic" and strategy against civilians voids it for as long as it takes to punish and more importantly neuter the perpetrators.

Just like many warhawks and warmongers we have here in the U.S., I believe certain sociopaths have an appetite for murder and mayhem first with an argument for it second.  It was surely as much sport as it was theology that drove the specific individuals who crossed Israel's border to kill.  But more broadly speaking, in the framework of the entire controversy, Hamas has had time to breed and mix the delicate formula of ignorance and sociopathy among people to create such monsters explicitly for their purpose.  In the U.S., we perfect that formula to create politicians and commercial leaders who become those faces you might see on Sunday morning press programs.  But in desperate places such as Gaza without the elegance of prosperity to cover up such carnality, what happened last week is what you get from these same type of people operating at a much lower level than those of a suit and respectable title.

So, in my blogging opinion, Israel is justified in its predictable military response with probably no "clean" way of going about it.  We can hope that whatever happens next ends the threat against them once and for all, that as many innocent people are spared as possible in the process, and that for once, violence won't beget more violence (yeah, right.)

Which does lead to the bigger angst I would hold not against Israel but rather the process that set up this entire matter at the outset.  Something that nobody should have been satisfied with.  From what I've been able to YouTube and Wikipedia research (which reads as trivial academia of course, but believe me, is how millions and millions of others are now suddenly being forced to develop out of blood curiosity), there seems to have been some drive to "home" people of the Jewish faith that I probably would never agree there was an explicit need for, let alone on preoccupied land.

Instead, somehow "these people are so...something...that we need to work out a way to 'house' them in the world" seems just as presumptuous as oppression or extermination, no matter how well intended.  And then to finally agree on a way that would surely just piss off a bunch of other people, sparking perpetual war as it is to be clearly seen now, is just beyond comprehension.

Having sympathy for Palestinian people is clearly not the same as having sympathy or supporting Hamas, the force that hijacked their cause, nor is it decrying Israel or its right to exist today, nor is it not having sympathy for Israelis.  What we as people need to consider is Israel's mature evolution irregardless of the ill-conceived reasoning that brought it into being (by at least my opinion).  After all when no nation today has a pure history of origins it is unfair to hold such a standard against Israel.

  By Dave for Personal Blog.

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I Don't See How This is Any Solution


As a "solution" this makes zero sense.  Yes, it's great that all these people have been given the right to work.  But - it's for them to live and work in New York City.  So how is anything solved?  Even at the good end of the wage scale for a migrant worker they aren't going to be able to afford a rent, food, and transportation. 

Image of bad guy on porch.

This problem isn't solved for average Americans let alone immigrants.  Affordable living and rent among hard workers punching a clock every single day is a longstanding crisis in its own right.   

I'm afraid that the only winners here are going to be those who trade in black market rentals in potential fire tombs who will be the ones to get their hands on any cash these people earn.  I don't understand the open fictionalization of success here and the pressure to celebrate it.

  By Dave for Personal Blog.

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Social Media Exposes Disdain For Consumerism


Capture of newspaper headline about suing social media for negative impact on students.

I get it, but, why hasn't anyone sued the TV networks for the past 50 years for this?  Why haven't they sued advertising agencies, producers of pop culture, 7th Avenue New York, celebrities, or for that matter the developers of the internet and the original world wide web? 

People and conduits have been impacting mental health and "disrupting education" forever.  And they have all been tuning and tweaking their tactics for maximum influence. 

People didn't dislike consumerism until it became social media I guess.    

  By Dave for Personal Blog.


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How We Should Begin Colonizing Space


I'm not as pessimistic as the video is, but I do think our approach to beginning civilizations on other planets could stand a reconsideration.

(If someone could please forward this blog post to the President of the United States Space Cabinet, I would appreciate it.)

What we should do rather than prepare a new elite body of astronauts to live on the Moon or Mars is to create a new military branch of "soldiers" especially trained to live and forge in inhospitable environments in general.

In this framework the resiliency skillset can be implemented here on Earth first by setting up colonies in Antarctica or beneath the oceans - or anyplace humans should damn well never think about being, let alone thriving.  For example, like my bathroom going on its 8th month without a deep clean.

Then, as the apparatus as a whole is perfected (and to military advantage in fact), it can be exported to the Moon and Mars.

Point being, let's not focus on conquering livability on other planets but rather, focus on evolving human resilience so that doing so is just "different syntax" when we do.

  By Dave for Personal Blog.

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How to Fix the Homelessness Problem


A post came up in my Next Door feed this morning from a person who snapped the above pic.

What can be done? This guy has been sleeping in Bidwell Parkway for several days. Often joined by people who seem to be drunk or walk around yelling.  I don't want to approach.  Call 911 with medical emergency? Just don't want this to become a homeless base!

Accordingly, here is my advice for the person who posted it, and to anyone who lands here:

Advocate for "housing first" strategies that work.  Same for forms of universal healthcare. 

If you are a progressive with whom these concepts resonate already, lean in and support policies of compassionate containment or just containment, and involuntary policies of commitment to mental institutions and hospitals.  This includes for jails and prisons when it seems to make sense.  Forgive errors of judgement in the process (because there will be errors), and, fight abuses of the same in the courts - because they will happen as well - not in the streets every time a dramatic video is leaked.  Tolerate necessary social control.

If you are a conservative, lean in and pay the extra taxes to make all of this happen, as well as slightly higher prices to compensate or help businesses and companies pay real living wages.  You can't complain about homeless base camps and yet gripe against the social collectivism required to address them at the same time.  A minority of people will game social safety net programs and you will walk past a few people living as well as you, the one who goes to work each day, at subsized expense. Learn to smile and say hello to them as you do.

The last option, systematic extermination, is not on the table.

If you can't stretch a little either way from your ideological anchor, and ovens are not an option, then go out and tell the guy in the picture above a good joke, he could probably use the lift.

  By Dave for Personal Blog.

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Not A Willy-Neely Death


Jordan Neely wasn't killed on purpose.

To those who picked that up someplace (I'm looking at you mayonnaise media), if they honestly believe that, I guess I get their angst.

But, if they're ignoring the fact that an honest effort was made to quell an ambiguous threat that went horribly wrong with an ill-advised chokehold, then I can't have sympathy for the intellectual void that would settle someone on anger toward the marine.  Such an intellect just wants to be angry and any headline will do.

What I am is sad for the man who died, for there not being a culture and a system that would have intercepted him through help or containment, and for the marine who at this point I more reasonably believe was just looking to help in a situation that was contextually threatening and chaotic.  Enough to compel him.

I don't think that the marine reached out to stop a man from insinuating threats alone, as that would make no sense.  He probably had reason to believe that some actual physical attack was imminent. He may have miscalculated that probability (though based on the dead man's police record, probably not) but that's not on him -- a mix of people would interpret the situation differently given the dead man's behavior.

A tragedy for both parties and any collective anger needs to be directed at every reason that guy was walking around freely, particularly given his past. Those reasons, whatever they are, are the deficit -- not the marine who unwisely got involved the way that he did.

As an aside, have you noticed that every single media house that publishes on about this story fails to land on this most direct and innocuous angle?  That's because $$$.  The rationale coverage appealing to reasonable people is not profitable.

It would make so much more sense for Elon Musk to label for-profit media entity Twitter accounts than non-profit ones for this very reason.  

  By Dave for Personal Blog.

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I'm Fine, Society Is Not


Capture of CNN website coverage of Buffalo shooting incident.

Hi all, I was away from computers and the news for the entire period, helping a friend move, when this horrible thing happened. I am safe, but thank you for all the concern and messages.

You can imagine that something like this happening local to me would have had me all over it with respect to ground journalism and online ranting philosophies in wake of, the actual lack of which, raised alarm bells as to my well-being.

As it is, and probably for the better, I am just a horrified member of the regular audience digesting in what I can from the regular post-analysis news. I have seen some clips of the since-pulled videos of the shooter's livestream and find myself wanting to personally strangle the man responsible. The anger has no bottom on this one.

  By Dave for for BuffScan.

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Voice of Real Reason


This guy's (Antonio Williams, the guy interviewed in the video) patient reasoning about police shootings is exactly how I feel in most cases.  Notice how he doesn't presume individual police officers to be bad murderous-intending people, but rightly blames the training and conversely the lack of imagination and will to pursue non-lethal methods and time for de-escalation (worded that way because police have always understood de-escalation, what they don't do is budget for it in real-time crisis handling).  

This man will enrage those who hate police and genuinely believe all officers roam the streets with a mindset to kill.  But you have to leave those people behind as much as you have to leave behind people who believe law enforcement can do no better than violence in crisis handling.

  By Dave for for BuffScan.

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If There Has To Be A Line


First, the video:

Now my commentary...

I don't know that the OP's take on the tiny home solution is really fair. People who fall into homelessness aren't chiefly looking for community; they're looking for safety and stability.

When you ask the homeless -- not the anti-rule homeless this video largely orbits, but the layer above that -- a top reason cited for not using existing homeless shelters is personal safety. A cop at the head of a field of cots is not "safety" in those places.  That rudimentary approach just doesn't cut it for too many.  

The intense security of these tiny home lots, which the video's producer finds so dismaying, is likely an attempt to address that very issue.

Also, I believe research has shown that the instability of moving from homeless shelter to homeless shelter or otherwise coping with homelessness creates its own problem since there can be no stable interface to a job. That interwound insecurity just perpetuates the crisis.

The idea of the tiny home community is to remove that instability and provide a strong integral platform for people to begin clawing themselves out successfully -- something I imagine takes years, not the mere length of time granted by an analytical eye.

Getting the tiny home concept actualized is monumental enough but to suddenly step back and "move the goal post" by declaring that, oh, now it needs to also be a place of community and of more discretionary security or something, is just so unfair. I actually think that a sense of community can in fact emerge anyway, and where the security is concerned, it is needed for good honest homeless people to thrive again.

There should be nobody on the streets, but if there has to be a line, yes, it can be at where the people decide that the "rules" are too much for them. Romanticizing tent encampments as places that should not be touched to honor the anti-rule homeless just so isn't helping anything. :/

  By Dave for for BuffScan.


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