June 3rd, 2008

Semiformalishmaybe

A Word for a Pauper

Recently: Terrible headaches have eaten entire days. There was a nice recent social evening with Gustavo and Chrisamaphone and Wjl though - conversation and some hanging out that was as comfortable as I've been in a long time. Gaming at J/R's has also been good (albeit too infrequent).

Thinking about social circles and "resets" in my personal life:Collapse )

Thinking again about language we use in discussions on politics, philosophy, and values in general.Collapse )

I met a cute girl at Rocky that I'm kind of tempted to contact, although I'm not sure if I'm going to remain in Pgh, my existing crushes haven't really gone away, and I'm starting to emotionally slide downwards again. OKC suggests possibly interesting compatibilities though. Hmm.

Hopefully I can arrange gainful employment again soon.

Recently I've been thinking a lot about sleek and ethiopiean food. If headache permits, I'll at least have wonderfully fresh morning bagels at Brugger's this morning.

  • Current Music
    Myf - Contagious
Semiformalishmaybe

What is a Relationship?

My priority in relationships:Collapse )

I wonder how others differ in this regard. I sometimes hear guys talking about sex as the primary value of relationships, and I wonder if they're really being honest or if they're just "towing the party line" on masculinity. It frustrates me that such a party line exists and it taints honest discussion of needs and wants in our society as much as it does.

Semiformalishmaybe

Losing the Spotlight

I read a lot of international news, probably almost none that's American. This is not hard because Reuters and AP together seem to write about 95% of news, and while in theory newspapers and news programmes are not supposed to pass it along word-for-word, they in fact do (google news makes this completely apparent). Fortunately, other countries seem to have a news tradition that has not yet been stifled, and both through scanning the headlines in Google news and regularly reading a few foreign newspapers one likes, one can get a broader perspective on world events. One of the odd things one notices is that their coverage of events in the USA is quite good - American elections are covered with equal or greater weight than local elections (when applicable). I initially thought this was a feature of either language or IP-based traffic, but one can look at picture captions (and possibly understand bits of other languages) and go through various proxies to find this largely untrue. If the American political/economic star is fading (I believe it is, although not as rapidly as I would like), I wonder how long we'll still see this level of coverage - I doubt more than 1% of Americans could distinguish Chirac and Sarkozy or even know who Margaret Thatcher or Angela Merkel are, but people are talking about Obama, Clinton, and McCain all over the world. Maybe some of this is how much style over substance we have in American politics - a more straightforward "job application for a CEO" with lots of in-depth info on one's political past combined with organised and detailed information on policy and intuitions seems like it would provide voters with a much more useful perspective than the media circus we have with advertisements and emotion-centred pitches. Another part of it probably is the unfortunate fact that the USA has disproportionate power in the world, economically, diplomatically, militarily (I would've discounted this before BushJr decided that invading other countries was chic), and through effective control of several large international bodies. We can expect all these things to continue to slip.

I wonder if ideas/traditions from the german Jugendweihe should be considered useful material/inspiration for those building a secular society in the USA. Standard disclaimer: I do not self-identify as a secular humanistCollapse )