“While there is a lower class, I am in it, while there is a criminal element, I am of it, and while there is a soul in prison, I am not free._
I had a short confab yesterday with four elementary teachers after doing my substituting for a 6th grade class whose teacher – 21 years at the same school – had to deal with her father who was placed in a memory care facility 60 miles away more than 10 years ago.
That in itself is one entire tome’s worth of discussion, how the elite and both money-drenched parties and their governors and round-table “movers and shakers” and the entire death machine that is Capitalism have put middle class people like a public school teacher behind the eight ball to figure out how to take care of a father with dementia.
That teacher – who has won awards for her science teaching, her classroom dynamics, and was gracious when handing off her class to me – is, believe it or not, in a much better position in her precarity and the entire false for-profit rigged system that is extracting money-money-money for a case of dementia that will/does hit people in this country every second.
What do small communities like Lincoln City or Newport, populations of 11,000 more or less, do when the old start or not-so-old begin to have infirmities that demand 12-hour care, or 24-hour care? Many people living in these cities are working in service jobs, serving meals to tourists, or packing crab and fish at the fish plant, or are in some of the county government jobs, and a few working for the hospitals, and schools.
This is the story that never makes the bubble butt and bubble head national news feeds, because, it isn’t what these millionaires want to juggle with, because, Americans, the top 20 percent (economically) – and “top” doesn’t apply to these 20 percenters’ intelligence, ethical standards, humanity, caring, humility, fairness – want the perversion of the cult of celebrity, cult of crime reporting, cult of money-money money.
We are up a shit creek without a paddle in every form possible as a community of group of communities. The endless traffic down 101 increases as more and more homes and apartments are taken out of the rental/housing markets, and put into the hands of these rental home criminal enterprise organizations. Rentals for a weekend at the beach.
Endless streams of tourists looking for crab cakes, some pipeline on the Pacific for a backdrop of drinking booze, gorging on food and then yammer on and on how backward and bumpkin we living in these communities are?
The reader can research how broken this country’s people are: more than 150 million citizens have a chronic illness/multiple chronic illnesses; the suicide rate in the USA is sky high; more and more people have dissociative disease; more children are chronically distracted, anxiety-heavy, physically deteriorated; more and more families will have one, two or more people in their circle that will need lifetime medical, mental, occupational, psychological assistance.
The chickens have come back to roost, but let’s be clear readers – blame the One Percent, the Prostitutes in Politics, the CEOs like the Boeing murderer who should be in shackles now, instead of making off with his $23 million a year theft while he bullshits his way in Seattle.
This teacher, 21 years in the profession, has seen many changes herself. She was not complaining, and I was probing. Children in her class – more and more each year – have specialized education plans, IEPs, for various issues tied to learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, behavioral issues, and even physical ailments. Many are having big issues of standing still, and learning. Many are so tied to the junk of consumer culture, the celebrity junk, the superficial junk, the digital dungeons out there, just more and more kids more and more focused on themselves – the me-myself-and-I angst that America manufactures every single minute in this Propaganda Madness.
I did the class, probed the youth about their projects – genius projects that include a 3 to 5 minute presentation on topics of their interest, their passions. At a time when the genius should be flourishing at age 12, these children for the most part are flagging, because even the stalwarts, they are being dragged down by the commonest denominators of superficial childlike Pavlovian reactions to life itself. These kids have no form to show gumption and to carry on with their un-bloomed genius because public spaces are almost degraded totally, and parents are working for the mills and paper product and timber processors and have been themselves degraded into work mules and consumer cows.
Parents who hand off kids to the schools, but have no interest in or abilities to assist the learning and critical exploration processes these little geniuses in the making need.
I talked with a 60-ish teacher, who came to the profession doing many things before getting credentials in 2011. She posits that all the behavioral issues she has seen spiking are attributed to the fact that children have no negative consequences for bad behavior. That the society in general has allowed that permissiveness, but also parents specifically. She sees the lack of respect to teachers as incredible, and she seems flummoxed by that fact.
A teacher in her late thirties posited that it’s the epigenetics of past trauma in the parents’ and grandparents’ and family circles’ that have added to the DNA changes in offspring. She mentioned the total war this country has been in since 1940s, and we talked about the war-like conditions at home and in the communities that children pick up in the womb with mother’s cortisol flooding them as fetuses and the same cortisol inside their tiny tot’s lives once out into gravity and absorbing the constant fear, anger, anxiety, chaos, discord, fracturing and yelling and possibly physical punishment in their lives as parents and fractured caretakers themselves are broken by the One Percent’s plan to gouge every last glimmer of hope from people that this democracy is, for, and because of THE People, and that systems will be there for them if they work hard.
No health care system for all, so instead, parents are paying exorbitant amounts for rents, for food, for the daily fees, tolls, fines, levies, add-ons, triple-taxations just to live in a community. Parents that are confused in this Psychological Torture that is Consumer-Predatory-Parasitic-Casino Capitalism.
The other teachers also see the disruptive children in a classroom – sometimes up to 8 or 10 out of 29 in the class – as not being properly worked with and educated, but also the others in the classroom who have to survive the barrage of those behaviors, outbursts, confusions, and special treatment for more and more children.
As I have written about many times, we need to dig up the parking lots, open up the classrooms, build learning garden-crafts-solar panel centers on the schools’ roofs. We need parents there for parents day every week. We need muralists, children out of the four rooms and a plethora of desks teaching environment. Gardens in the school playground, total Marshall Plan for pk12 youth so we, the aging farts, have safety nets.
Bring in people daily from the community, and get youth to do service learning in the community.
Talking circles, a la Native American tradition, salmon smoking sheds, pottery classes, writing and music learning yurts, and more, more, more.
Dostoevsky said that one can more or less learn about a society’s humanity or lack thereof, or in fact a nation’s ethos and goodness or badness based on how the prisoners in jails and prisons are treated. USA gets an F-minus there. Add to the same formula – How well are children and youth treated and taught in the schools with the zip codes that reflect the lower and middle economic zones, the sacrifice zones, the fence line communities.
We know Trump is perverse beyond all perversions. A bully with no biceps and a belly and zero cardio. He wimped out of military service because he was afraid and rich. This man should be shackled and put in the docks and studied until he flitters away. But so should all the Empire’s Hussies, the presidents since Washington, onward. So should all the politicians whose pockets are lines with CEO graft money, and that’s a good 90 percent of those slugs.
To have these conversations is enlightening, and as I have had many in Guatemala or in Juarez or Belize or Vietnam, wherever, it is amazing to see glimmers of hope from people who are beaten down so much by the powerful, the elites and their Little Eichmann’s.
That’s not all I have, seeing people rise, even in the most degrading situations. In the most dangerous situations. I have my own exit plan, and I know we need less pacificism, less cordiality, less respect for more people in our communities. I can’t say all the things that would work to bring this system down because then I would be completely blackballed from the Jail Keep’s game.
This blog today, a bit of a left field fly-ball, considering how messed up the world it, just looking at middle of the road but considered so radical Democracy Now’s headlines today:
- British Police Arrest WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange
- Sudan: Military Overthrows Pres. al-Bashir After Months of Protests
- Dems Demand Evidence After AG Barr Tells Senators FBI Spied on Trump Campaign
- ICE Acting Dir. Leaves Post in Ongoing Purge of Immigration Officials
- Politico: Trump Considering Ex-Head of Hate Group for DHS Role
- Dems Introduce Bill to Reverse Trump’s Muslim & Anti-Refugee Bans
- Israel: Netanyahu Declares Victory as Gov’t Moves Further to Right
- India: Elections Kick Off as Hindu Nationalist PM Modi Seeks 2nd Term
- EU Leaders Extend Brexit Deadline to Oct. 31
- Louisiana: Suspect Arrested over Fires at 3 Black Churches
- House Dems Pass Net Neutrality Bill, But Senate Fate Remains Bleak
- Bernie Sanders Unveils Revamped Medicare for All
- Israel: Netanyahu on Track for 5th Term in Office
- DHS “Purge” Continues with Deputy Sec. Claire Grady
- Reports: WH Wants to Put Border Agents in Charge of Asylum Interviews
- AG Barr to Congress: No Plans to Release Unredacted Mueller Report
- Mnuchin Says Treasury Consulted with WH on Trump Tax Returns
- Bipartisan Tax Bill Would Make Free IRS E-Filing System Illegal
- Airbnb Reverses Ban on Listings for Illegal Israeli Settlements
Tomorrow? Variations on a theme. More on prison industrial complex. More on the weather eating at the world. More on climate science. More on the stupidity of Wester Culture and Celebrity Politics. More on the white supremacists in the Oval Office, in the military, in the boardrooms, in the governor’s mansions, in the police-INS-BP-CIA-FBI-NSA mafia.
Sure, I can riff with those, and, well, poetry, since it is national poetry month, or climate change and the environment, since it’s Earth Day coming up. Yeah, I met with Governor Inslee while working for SEIU 925 in Seattle, and now he is being interviewed on all the billionaire networks by bubble butts and bubble brains as he has thrown his aspirant’s towel in the bowels of presidential politics.
Nice guy, former teacher, Seattle-guy, not a wall-flower, family guy, white, intelligent, a fighter of sorts, but still, DNCC all the way. He is the guy adding to the fodder in the Democratic race to go up against the Zionist-Jewish Enterprise, which is now the Stephen Miller show that Trump’s in law Kushner recruited years ago. How to go up against these Jewish guys like Elliot Abrams, and then these Christian Guys like Pence and Tribe?
In the end, though, life is about parents and loved ones getting care for Alzheimer’s and dementia, and about youth and babies being born already hobbled with any number of chronic illnesses and learning and intellectual disabilities. It’s about Baby Boomers aging out, and about Millennials Stuck in Perpetual Chaos.
It’s about our crab and salmon and rockfish “industries” dying off, about acidification of the oceans, about the rising theft in rental property agreement, the rising price of gasoline, because summer is coming up (arbitrary), and the rising tides and lowering public health.
I wonder about these fellows and females running for office. I really know that they for the most part are egotistical, megalomaniacal, and narcissistic. Maybe not Jay Inslee, but what chance does he have when he allows the handcuffs and ankle monitor of the Democratic Party guide his ethos and philosophy?
It is really about the youth, the chronically ill, the prisons, the schools, the rents, the public spaces, the holding the masters of corporate greed and corruption responsible for this society’s diseased soul.
Finally, without identifying the school I subbed at, the air, man, the air. Pulp mill stink. Poor community up in the mountains, and the children, adults, old and frail, that’s their reward for being born on the wrong side of the money. While the smell of burning sulfur is everywhere in America’s boardrooms, in the Senate, in the Congress, in the Supreme Court and other courts, I recall the smell in Powell River, BC, Canada, where my mom grew up and where her lungs were singed by the air coming from what was once (then, 1930s) the largest pulp mill in the world.
I subbed, smelled that hellish odor, and as a poet and environmentalist, my mind went back to all those years hearing and seeing my mother spit up sputum and eventually get hooked up to O2 tanks while she lived to the unusual age of 78 with both lower parts of her lung (lobes) cut out at age 21 as another sadistic western medicine “solution” to her lung issues.
Children and learning and air pollution! How’s that working out for intellectual and learning disabilities?
Pulp and paper is the third largest industrial polluter to air, water, and land in the United States, and studies show that it releases well over 100 million kg of toxic pollution each year.
The main components of pulp mill related pollution are chlorine and chlorine based materials, sulfur, hydrogen sulfide and sulfur dioxide. Chlorine and compounds of chlorine are used in the bleaching of wood pulp, especially chemical pulps produced by the kraft process or sulfite process. Plants using elemental chlorine produced significant quantities of dioxins that are persistent organic pollutants that are one of the most toxic human-released pollutants.
The used process water from a pulp mill contains a lot of organic material such as lignin and other organic material from the trees, including chlorinated organic material. The presence of these organic substances results in high biological oxygen demand (BOD) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC).
Sulfur-based compounds are used in kraft process as well as sulfite process for making wood pulp. The release of sulfur dioxide is of particular concern because it is water soluble and is a major cause of acid rain.
Air emissions of hydrogen sulfide, methyl mercaptan, dimethyl sulfide, dimethyl disulfide, and other volatile sulfur compounds are the cause of the odor characteristic of pulp mills utilizing the kraft process. Other chemicals that are released into the air and water from most paper mills include carbon monoxide, ammonia, nitrogen oxide, mercury, nitrates, methanol, benzene, volatile organic compounds and chloroform.
Nitrogen dioxide(NO) sulfur dioxide (SO) and carbon dioxide (CO) are emitted during paper manufacturing. All of them cause acid rain and CO is a major greenhouse gas that causes climate change. These toxic gases contribute to air pollution.