Simon Steele

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About Simon Steele

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    Machete don't tweet.
  • Birthday 05/28/1979

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  1. And police should have a chance at a fair trial--like everyone else. But they should not be above the law. But the unions seem to have found a way to allow them to be above the law. This is problematic. I agree with you--collective bargaining is very important. Scot is right too--police are a special case. They have the ability to determine who lives and who dies in an ordinary interaction. DWS and I seem to share a hopeless view on this situation especially given the Castile verdict--and Castile is a man who was chosen to die at the hands of a police officer. No matter the reason, Castile should still be alive (among countless others). It's chilling and terrifying.
  2. I'm so torn on this, Scot. On the one hand, I'd agree, this is a union that's allowing awful things to happen. But in our current culture, if we go after one union--I fear that's opening the floodgate to go after all unions. Unions are a good thing. They don't have the right to impose regulations that allow criminal behavior from their members. Though I was just thinking of this yesterday when driving to work. The line from the article you posted: "And though conservatives regularly castigate public-sector unions as parasites, they typically exempt the police." This drives me up the wall. As a teacher, I see teachers' unions often demonized by the right (when I've seen the good they do) for protecting bad teachers. As if that's all they do. Or as if most of them even do that. The right will pick and choose examples and say this is true of all unions. But police unions? Never do we hear a peep about them. I suppose the police are a special case, and a special case can be made about their union as the article notes. We don't see unions in the military after all, and the police have turned themselves into a military force. Edit: I've lost all hope after the acquittal in the Castile murder. It is okay for cops to shoot people. Where is the outrage from other Americans?
  3. I played all of the following on PC: While I was waiting for the Witcher 3 to come out, I got Shadows of Mordor (if you haven't played it) and I really liked it. My son, who hadn't beat a game before (other than Ducktales remastered) loved and played through the new Wolfenstein twice. Farcry 3 was amazing, and my son got Farcry 4 and loved it--either of those would be good--though he may have had Far Cry 4 on the PS4. I liked the Forest--it's still in Beta, I think, but it's kind of an open world, building game--with cannibals. Similar to the Forest is ARK--a survival sim with dinosaurs. A lot of fun, but also in beta/whatever it is before they release it but let you buy it. Metal Gear Solid V if you haven't played it was amazing. If you like side scrollers (I have a ton of these if you want more recommendations), you've got to play Ori and Blind Forest--really beautiful game. Hard as hell. Oh, speaking of hard, might as well get some Dark Souls while you're at it. 1 or 3 would be good. I didn't like 2 as much.
  4. Agreed. When people sit down and say, "My own truth is all I need," or some variation of that, I would argue they are perverting what postmodernism is. But I am not an expert on this subject. This has just been how I've come to view the philosophy. I had to look up the quote by the way...then I slapped my forehead for being a doof. I also love Happy Ent's post--I wish I could articulate those ideas so clearly.
  5. You're simplifying too much. For example, if the objective reality of the world around us has, within it, a disease that affects certain people more than others--then those affected people will feel subjectively different about the world than those not affected. We should not dismiss how those people construct their worldviews, but try to understand them, help them, etc. This is really simplifying, but I hate this argument. Read Derrida and Foucault instead of just hating them. Most of your concerns would go away.
  6. Pragmatism, Scot. We understand people have subjective experiences of reality where they build their own constructed views of the world, but we also understand an objective reality likely exists, and that objective reality we can try to understand, and we can try to not allow it to hurt those who are most vulnerable to it.
  7. It makes me think they're going to try to bring him back in grand, heroic fashion--but this version has been a flop (in my opinion). Might as well center on what works with this universe, and so far, that's consistently been Wonder Woman. She stole BvS for me--made it so I might, possibly have some small desire to watch it again someday. She was awesome. I'd rather watch her take on Doomsday, Darkseid, Braniac, with the support of the "others."
  8. I haven't seen Wonder Woman yet, but with all the good reviews and the word of mouth saying she is really...heroic? I wonder if she should be the face of the Justice League franchise (instead of Superman). While he was always the big hero of the group, I think this iteration of Wonder Woman could take that role. I'm excited for the new movie--waiting to see it with my son--and I think Gal Gadot was so good in BvS, she should just be the focal point of these movies.
  9. I heard this too. I'm fine with their choice in how they're filming it--(to film everyone together)--but I didn't think season 4 was so bad, so what do I know?
  10. He was a Bernie supporter--he was THE Bernie supporter. When I quieted my own support late in the election, he remained my Bernie Moral Compass, both here on the page, and as he infuriated and raged on Facebook. I loved it all. I guess Bones...was idealistic. And I don't mean that in the "oh, you're so idealistic, you don't understand how the world works" kind of way. He was idealistic in that way where he believed the world could be a better place for everyone, and he actively FOUGHT for it no matter if it made him unpopular or REALLY unpopular. I respect him so much for that. I saw on Facebook today the news about him. I didn't know he had been sick. I guess while we had a good back and forth/support of each other--I never knew him as personally as I should have, and I regret that immensely. I think I really missed out on so many terrific sides to him.
  11. I feel like I hadn't seen him around here as much lately, but I am so happy I was able to read his Facebook posts over the last few months. He had beliefs he would not back down from, and he defended them no matter who grew upset with him--and I loved reading every post he wrote. He was one of the best, and I'm so sad seeing this news.
  12. As far left as I am, I read a book my super conservative David Ramsey called the Total Money Makeover. I hated the cover, I thought I'd hate him, but honestly--the book was full of good advice I'd wished I had since I was 20 years old (not 35 and wallowing in debt!). He isn't about beating you up for your mistakes, but he outlines a clear plan on how to get out of debt, how much to save, and he provides free budget sheets on his website and says it is imperative to create a budget every single month. When I was still teaching, I had paid off all my credit cards, was doing great--then I jumped into this PhD thing and things unraveled. My fault. But I'm going to go back and get it on track. The point is--his advice isn't so extraordinary. I wish when I first applied for food stamps, college student or not, I had been given this book/mentored/or allowed to register for a class that would help me with budget. The sooner the better. Edit: Here is a state run example of Devos' proposed school choice system. Overseen by Indiana's Mike Pence! What the vouchers did? Allowed people already attending private schools to now go to private schools on tax payer money for the most part. Some changes happened happened though: "This shift in the program's rules, begun by Pence in 2013, has led to a shift in student demographics as well. White voucher students are up from 46 percent that first year to 60 percent today, and the share of black students has dropped from 24 percent to 12 percent. Recipients are also increasingly suburban and middle class. A third of students do not qualify for free or reduced-price meals." But again, to say this is racism would be wrong according to Dundermifflin and his buds. In fact, it'd be to liken them to Hitler or the Klan! I think the concept of systemic racism has alluded them. Anyway. States rights and school of choice at work.
  13. I agree, and I'll round this back to my original point about the programs most likely to be affected by the education cuts: something like Head Start which educates family on just how important it is to keep children on healthy diets. Head Start provides more than before/after school supervision, it feeds kids, educates them (and their families) beyond school topics in areas such as nutrition/health. These programs are so important. Now the other portion of the problem--highly processed foods being cheaper? I don't know how that gets fixed. It is a mess. And again, people complain when poor people buy good, nice food with food stamps too--which, who cares? But something has to be done there. When I struggled on foodstamps while in school, I was lucky enough to be pointed to the food bank--I could go once a week and fill up on a number of items, which freed up my foodstamp budget for more nutritional, healthy items for my son and I. I don't know how other states approach this kind of thing--I live in a fairly progressive town, in a state that has become progressive over the years.
  14. Also, the less people get in food stamps, the more they have to rely on cheaper, highly processed foods. On top of this, it is so Republican to moralize about how people spend the money given to them to help. It's like when you're down on your luck, borrow some money, and when you use it, you're afraid the person you borrowed from will find out you're doing something nice for yourself for once here or there. It's no one's business. The entitlement is handed out. Food education is more important than this rampant moralizing. If someone can walk into a store and buy Mountain Dew, then someone on foodstamps should be able to as well. If someone on EBT though, were to buy fresh fruit, healthy options, etc., I can guarantee their benefits would last about 2 weeks. Whenever I was on EBT during my hardest days of school, I had to research very carefully the best ways to get the healthiest foods for my son and I. Most people don't do this--and they aren't bad, immoral, or whatever. If the government puts in some rule/exemption on the benefit, it ALWAYS affects things the person could use or need that wasn't intended to be categorized. It's a mess. I really hate the moralizing though. People who have enough, who live okay, they look down at those in need. Make up arguments like "all they buy are Cheetos and Mountain Dew with my tax dollars" or "how dare they buy New York Strips with my tax dollars." Bunch of assholes.
  15. It is racism--but it isn't about fascism or Klan meetings--racism functions differently now. These are not changes Toth mentioned, these are cuts, and the cuts will disproportionately affect the poor--and most often marginalized, non-white groups.