The New Year and a Change of Direction
First, let me apologize for the weird Call to undefined function tribune_menu_load() some of you were getting yesterday; I spent a few hours last night upgrading all the site modules to their most recent versions (the site itself comes next) and the tribune module was on the list of those that could not be upgraded. Unfortunately, when I uninstalled that module, it left little bits of itself lying about in caches and the database, and even though I killed it off in the database, it somehow rose from the grave. All should now be well.
More centrally, I apologize for going walkabout. I think I complained about the food poisoning, and then about the poison ivy and (I am convinced) subsequent cellulitis on my right (typing) hand and arm, but as it turns out I boasted prematurely about dodging the hacking cough, because of my clever purchase of a bellows. In fact, I got the worst hacking cough ever -- the kind where, typing, one feels that little chunks of lung are spattering the screen -- and had to go back to the Helen Hunt clinic again, for more pills of a different kind and an inhaler. I can't remember having been to the doctor twice in one month! I couldn't talk for days. My lack of comfort with this sighting shot from mortality aside, I wonder if I was telling myself something with all those photographs of rot and decay I had been taking, beautiful though they are; specifically, I wonder if all the insulation I installed had the unintended side effect of forcing me to breath fine dust and micro-organisms that would otherwise have been blown around and away by drafts!
Even more centrally, I'm not really claiming a medical exemption. One of my many character flaws, which has gotten worse with age, is that when I figure out I don't want to be doing something, I stop doing it immediately. And I haven't been all that happy with my blogging at Corrente because I don't want to be writing, here, about the general news flow any more, and specifically not about the horse race of 2016.
On the horse race, "my work here is done": In 2008, Democratic suckitude, let alone Obama suckitude, was a view shared by a lonely minority; now it's conventional wisdom, at least among the sentient (and not just due to me, but all of us). So as far as 2016 goes, having armed and triggered the device, I don't feel the need to wait around for the shock waves and the reverberations. Time to move on!
On the general news flow, the level of gaslighting, and fear-mongering, and manipulation, and sheer bullshit is so great I'm not sure it's worth trying to shovel back the tide; for example, I'm sure I could write eloquently and even insightfully here on Charlie Hebdo, but do I really want to? No. Frankly, Charlie Hebdo feels like a forced card to me, forced not so much by a few of the Shing consciously plotting in secret, but forced as the sort of crisis the system we are enmeshed in would emit; a bright shiny bauble, albeit one, like the best of all baubles, covered in blood and triggering hate. And batting baubles around isn't the sort of work I want to be doing. Life is too short.
Time for a cat video:
That is, and most centrally of all, I don't want to be reactive any more. In fact, what I want to do is what I've been saying I want to do: I want to write up the 12 Point Platform and the associated 12 Reforms, item by item (though with plenty of working drafts and supporting posts). So I am going to start doing what I want to do; I want the political class to react to the 12 Points as policy, and I don't want to be reacting to their fear mongering and strategic hate management.
Now, I tried to gear up for this project by saying to myself "I'll just do a few posts to keep the balloon in the air" -- blogging is a lot like flying a hot air balloon -- "and then go on to the 12 Points". Except that kept on not working, because those few posts would turn into four hours of work, and if you think about it, justifying each of the 12 points, and each of the 12 reforms, is quite a project: It's certainly as much work as a book, and I have to study up on a lot of subjects; it's not a matter of banging out blog posts. So the peripheral was eating up the central.
So henceforth the 12 Points and 12 Reforms will be my focus, though I may start posting garden pictures when I start working the soil in April. You, readers, are free to post what you like, with an exception I'll get to in the NOTE, on topics of your own choosing. In fact, the more variety the better! I'm making plans for how to invest my time, not yours!
NOTE I learned two hard lessons in 2014, one minor, one major.
The minor lesson is drive-by comments; Corrente is my workplace, among other things, and I'm not investing time dealing with what I believe are called micro-aggressions; again, life is too short me to walk in to a hostile workplace every day. Maybe I should invent a type of paid account with that privilege!
The major lesson is that given my level of investment in blogging both here and at Naked Capitalism, it's possible for a really committed bad faith actor to throw more bullshit here than I can process. I never would have thought it possible, but it's true!
So over the past few months I've purged both categories of account (and the purge is over, so don't worry). Draconian, perhaps, but Corrente is my rice bowl; it costs money to run, and it takes an immense amount of time, and I depend on it to pay some of my bills. So people who try to break my rice bowl get whacked. That's how it is, and that's how it has to be.
A corollary here is that until I say otherwise, I regard the 12 Points and 12 Reforms as "settled law" -- which, again, doesn't mean that you have to post on them! By "settled law," I mean that critiques, refinements, and additions are welcome -- since I have to study up a lot on complex topics where I am not a subject matter expert -- and parallel posts are fine (like letgetitdone's or metamars' recent posts) but that full-on and direct assaults on the foundations of the 12 Points are not welcome; I'm not going to waste time processing them because I have work to do. If you want to post that "Single payer is teh suxx0r" or "The Post Office Bank is a Communist plot," it's a big Internet, and feel free to post your ideas elsewhere.