September 2017
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Statsbudsjettet

Kommentar kopiert fra Facebook, fordi det er et fryktelig dårlig medium for ting jeg kunne tenke meg å kunne lese igjen senere (og fordi det ikke akkurat gjør noe om jeg poster her av og til…):

Jeg skjønner ikke helt dette her. Hvis problemet er at barnetillegget for uføre kan gjøre det mer lønnsomt å være ufør enn å gå på arbeidsavklaringspenger, hadde det ikke vært en ide å standardisere ved å gi dem som kan gå på AAP like mye som de som er uføre får? Det er en mildt sagt j***g dårlig trøst for dem som nå kan miste så store deler av inntekten at de må flytte eller ta ungene ut av barnehage at det kanskje kan bety at det blir enklere for noen andre å velge AAP. Jeg tror dessuten at det er begrenset trivelig også for dem som eventuelt ikke har “valgt” AAP før fordi de da ville ende med å gå ned i inntekt at løsningen er: “Se her, siden du ikke vil gå ned i inntekt så kutter vi inntekten din som ufør slik at du like gjerne kan velge AAP”.

Og, seriøst, hvor mange mennesker snakker vi om her? ALLE jeg kjenner/vet om vil heller jobbe så stor andel som de klarer enn å “være en byrde for samfunnet”. For ikke å snakke om at vi jo alle vet at arbeidsgivere står i kø for å ansette folk som har vært ute av arbeidslivet en stund, bare kan jobbe deltid eller trenger tilrettelegging for å klare å jobbe. Yes, m’am.

Ja, og Erna er også mor, så hun forstår problemet. Jepp. Det blir faktisk nesten like dumt som når Fru Romney forsøkte å forklarer at hun og Mitt også hadde slitt med å klare seg som studenter, de hadde faktisk blitt nødt til *gisp* å selge noen av Mitts aksjer. Du er ikke helt der, Erna, men du er jaggu på samme jorde.

Foranledningen var denne artikkelen der Erna “svarer” Camilla.

Those pesky politics

Every time elections roll round again I struggle to decide whom to vote for. I’ve been a member of a couple of different parties, but never wholeheartedly, and never for more than a couple of years at most. One party has never, ever been under consideration, though. FrP is never getting my vote, even by proxy, which means any party that seriously considers long-term cooperation with FrP is also out of the question (what with having a multi-party system we usually have coalition governments nowadays). I normally land squarely to the left of center whatever I decide, though, so mostly just that issue hasn’t been a problem for me, however some of my friends are facing just that problem at the moment as it is rumored that Venstre might just possibly decide to, well, consider being in a coalition with FrP. Kristine at Haustljos is facing precisely that, and in that context decided to go looking for an answer to “What now?”. The particular test she found was a US based one (as far as we can gather) which yields some interesting results, though perhaps not very helpful ones in a Norwegian context. As Kristine says:

Testen eg tok var i overkant amerikansk, og skulle kartlegge kor rasistisk, homofob, kulturelt amøbe og gunhappy eg var.

Det viste seg at eg var hakket kvassare enn Gandhi.

Well, I was curious, so I took it too. I’m even worse:

This is me, apparently.

This is me, apparently.

Uhm. A little to the left and a little libertarian. Just a wee bit. So, if we’re “sharper than Gandhi”, where’s Gandhi?

The Political Compass' take on some historical figures.

The Political Compass' take on some historical figures.

Wheee. This is fun. So, since the election everyone’s talking about at the moment is the US primaries, let’s see who I should aim to vote for, were I a US citizen:

crowdgraphpng

Uh. Houston, we have a problem.

Or perhaps I should say Washington. Anyway, I guess it’s just as well I don’t have to decide which of the US candidates to vote for.

And, oh, those of you that claim Obama is a socialist? I think I can say with some authority: He ain’t. Mind you, according to this it seems Stalin wasn’t either. I mean, I’m in favour of the state having some control, and of essential public services being state owned rather than privatised, but I’m not against free trade as such. Well, ok, perhaps I am, since I’m in favour of regulating free trade, so let’s call it “freeish trade” shall we? Anyway, I’m not against private initiative, which I sort of thought the Soviets were. I may have misunderstood something here.

The overview of EU governments in 2008 is illuminating, too:

The world is mad.

The world is mad.

Norway, I suspect, world be just to the left of that middle axis, we’re pretty similar to Sweden, but the poor Swedes have had a right-wing government for a few years now. Not that the difference seems particularly glaring (nowhere near as glaring as it ought by rights to be), so not much further to the left. Nowhere near enough to make me happy.

___________

Edit:

The FAQ is interesting, and contains a point worth quoting under the heading “You can’t be libertarian and left wing”:

The assumption that economic deregulation inevitably delivers more social freedom is flawed. The welfare states of, for example, the Nordic region, abolished capital punishment decades ago and are at the forefront of progressive legislation for women, gays and ethnic minorities – not to mention anti-censorship. Such established high-tax social democracies consistently score highest in the widely respected Freedom House annual survey on democratic rank eg Denmark ranks 2, Sweden 3 and Norway 7, while comparatively free markets such as the US, Singapore and China rate 15,74 and 121 respectively (this detailed checklist can be viewed at http://www.worldaudit.org/civillibs.htm).

Mer reklame, denne gang politisk

Denne plakaten hang på bussen “min” i går:

Elephants? Seriously, WTF?

Egentlig vil jeg bare ha en forklaring på elefantene, men siden jeg først gikk til bryet med å ta bilde av plakaten kan jeg jo like gjerne plukke fra hverandre resten også…

For det første kan man vel gå ut fra at Ola Borten Moe (heretter OBM) ikke bidrar med nevneverdige arbeidsplasser for grafiske designere eller profesjonelle reklamefolk. Eventuellt driver han veldedighet og hyrer in sådanne som ikke får jobb noe annet sted. Men det er nå en sak. OBM er ikke alene om å tro at bare fordi dagens datateknikk har gjort at man KAN lage sine egne plakater så BØR man gjøre det.

La oss snakke litt om billedvalget, sånn utenom elefantene, selvsagt. Jeg skulle gjerne visst hvorfor det ene er i svart/hvitt, men slår meg til ro med at designeren (jeg bruker ordet i dets løseste betydning) synes det så kult ut. Ellers er det vel normal Senterparti-nasjonalromatikk vi snakker om. Ikke ett av bildene hadde skiftet “stemning” nevneverdig om de avbildede menneskene hadde vært ikledd bunad. Legg også merke til den totale mangelen på mennesker med noe annet enn griserosa hud. Nå kan man jo forstå at “bondepartiet” liker griser, men jeg har da sett mange flotte griser med andre hudfarger også, og da snakker jeg altså om griser – sånne som sier nøff, nøff. Nordmenn finnes også med mange flotte hudfarger, men det passer kanskje ikke like bra inn i Tidemand og Gude?

Og så var det mottoet, da. “Gode liv – der du bor”. Sikkert godt ment, for all del, men burde det ikke være enten “Godt liv der du bor” (personlig) eller “Gode liv der dere (evt. folk) bor” (generelt velvillig)? “Gode liv – der du bor” gir meg inntrykket av at OBM vil at jeg og naboene mine skal ha det bra, noe som forsåvidt er hyggelig, men at det ikke er så nøye med resten av verden. Det er upraktisk på flere måter, blandt annet ser jeg for meg at det kan bli folksomt i nabolaget mitt dersom det bare er her man kan få seg ett godt liv.

En annen ting er at i følge bildene bor jeg visst i en eller annen blomstereng et sted, det er forsvinnende lite asfalt i OBMs verden. Ikke at jeg er så fryktelig fan av asfalt, men jeg bor nå engang i byen og selv om jeg av og til får lyst på “katt og kaniner og et småbruk på Høland” så går anfallet som regel over det øyeblikket jeg kommer på at vi er tom for skikkelig ost (nå kan man argumentere med at hvis jeg bodde på et småbruk så kunne jeg lage ost selv, men jeg er ikke så sikker). Er ikke dette feil bilder å reklamere med på bussene i Norges tredje største by?

Og hva er det egentlig med den nettadressen? Nudge.no? Hæ. Hvorfor? Nudge er, meg bekjent, ikek engang et norsk ord. Er det ikke norsk valgkamp?

Men egentlig var det altså disse elefantene. Hva? Eller som vår gode venn Bertie Wooster ville ha sagt: “What, what what, what, what?”

Er det et forsøk på å ta klimaendringene på alvor – snart får vi elefanter i Sør-Trøndelag? Synes OBM bare at elefanter er innmari ålreite dyr? Er det et nikk til the Republican Party (United States)? Er det en oppfordring til nytenking i landbruket: Hvis Senterpartiet får makten vil det bli store subsidier til elefantfarmer? Kan det overhodet finnes en logisk og gjennomtenkt forklaring?

The mind boggles.

Facing privilege

Taking a break from the quilting posts to do an excercise, inspired by this post by Tami, read more about how (and why) in this article.

Take a (virtual) step:
If your father went to college before you started
If your father finished college before you started
If your mother went to college before you started
If your mother finished college before you started
If you have any relative who is an attorney, physician, or professor.
If your family was the same or higher class than your high school teachers
If you had a computer at home when you were growing up
If you had your own computer at home when you were growing up
If you had more than 50 books at home when you were growing up
If you had more than 500 books at home when you were growing up (Well, my parents certainly did. And to be honest, I probably did, too, even if I’m just supposed to count MY books.)
If were read children’s books by a parent when you were growing up
If you ever had lessons of any kind as a child or a teen
If you had more than two kinds of lessons as a child or a teen
If the people in the media who dress and talk like you were portrayed positively
If you had a credit card with your name on it before college
If you had or will have less than $5000 in student loans when you graduate
If you had or will have no student loans when you graduate
If you went to a private high school
If you went to summer camp
If you had a private tutor
(US students only) If you have been to Europe more than once as a child or teen
(International question) If you have been to the US more than once as a child or teen
If your family vacations involved staying at hotels rather than KOA or at relatives homes
If all of your clothing has been new
If your parents gave you a car that was not a hand-me-down from them
If there was original art in your house as a child or teen
If you had a phone in your room (But then, kids didn’t in Norway when I was young)
If your parent owned their own house or apartment when you were a child or teen
If you had your own room as a child or teen
If you participated in an SAT/ACT prep course
If you had your own cell phone in High School (I hadn’t even heard of anyone having a personal cell phone before I went to university)
If you had your own TV as a child or teen (But not for lack of funds, more because my parents wouldn’t have thought that was a good idea)
If you opened a mutual fund or IRA in High School or College
If you have ever flown anywhere on a commercial airline
If you ever went on a cruise with your family
If your parents took you to museums and art galleries as a child or teen
If you were unaware of how much heating bills were for your family

Yeah. Privileged.

But then, I’m white, cis-gendered, heterophile, able-bodied, educated with educated parents. The only thing I’ve got against me is being female, and I happen to live in one of the best countries in the world in terms of gender equality (though it’s still not perfect by any means). So I guess I knew that.

In which I read letters

…and wonder whether I should write some. I ought to know better, actually, than to read the letters page in the newspaper. Especially letters signed somebody whose name I really can’t be arsed to remember, Kristent samlingsparti (or whatever it is they call themselves, and no, I will not google them, I do not want to contribute to their hit count). It left me feeling exasperated and a little tempted to go on a rampage of sorts.

Ok, ok, I get it. Some people are against the new marriage equality law.But I need some explanation, nevertheless.

So you’ve read the bible and found that it says that teh gays they are teh evilz (though, you know, I read it too, and I never found that part), and therefore they need to be saved from having happy fulfilling lives and be “cured” into miserableness and probably forced to marry someone of the opposite sex and procreate, because that-thing-you-call-god-which-bears-little-resemblance-to-my-God apparently thinks the world is underpopulated.

That’s fine.

Ok, it isn’t fine, but I can sort of see your point if I tilt my head and squint a bit. You’re entitled to your opinion, even if I fundamentally disagree.

But how, how, HOW can you describe Bill and Ted down the street finally getting the legal recognition of their loving and faithful relationship over the last 20 years as an “attack on those of us who want a normal marriage”? No one’s talking about YOUR marriage. No one CARES about your marriage. You’re married? Fine. Good for you. If your marriage is so frail a thing that the fact of someone completely unrelated to you getting legal recognition of a relationship YOU wouldn’t want to be in then, you know, perhaps it’s how YOU handle your own relationship you should be worried about and talk about and do something with.

See, I’m not gay. The person I fell head over heels in love with and who happened to fall in love with me and whom I married a while back and hope to God (mine, not yours) I will stay married to until death do us part (and oh, let that be in a good many years) is of the opposite sex. And I hold our marriage sacred. But it matters to me NOT ONE JOT that Bill and Ted get married and live happily ever after too. In fact, it makes me rather happier, in that the more people in this world who are happy, the less people are likely to go on murderous rampages (or to write moronic letters to the editor, because, have you noticed, really happy people don’t feel the need to put other people down). It makes our marriage no less valid, no less valuable. Neither does Jane and Ben getting a divorce or the fact that Joe beats Diane senseless every Friday, though the former makes me kind of sad and the latter hopping mad. But it doesn’t affect OUR marriage.

You know, you probably heard this before, but it seems to bear repeating: Go get your bible and read the bit about loving thy neighbour as thyself and doing unto others etc. again. It’s in the New Testament. You know, that bit of the bible you’re supposed to hold especially dear if you’re a Christian.

I meant to forget all about that stupid letter and not write all that, but then Faith posted this at Shakesville and I really needed to post it too, and the other bit sort of just happened. Video emphatically not safe for work (well, the sound isn’t, and you really need the sound on):

Assvertising

Stealing my title from Shakesville (see Assvertising), but, really, how else to describe this?

Assvertising

Mind you, it fits nicely in the series: Today in disembodied things, too.

The text reads: “Life flows better when you can use the same card for something that highlights the whole of you or just a little detail.”

The whole of you? Really?

Note to advertisers: Most women have heads. I think – I might be wrong here, but I’m willing to chance it – it might be just ever so slightly difficult to get along without one.

Oh, the fail

Wanted: Proofreader.

Wanted: Proofreader.

Or just a little competence.

Oh, the fail, the fail – or as Henry Higgings would have it:

Poor Eliza. How simply frightful!
How humiliating! How delightful!

(Via)

20/365

20/365 - Throwing a (virtual) shoe at Bush

Today I’m throwing my shoe at Bush.

I have also watched the inauguration of Obama, participated in the live blogchat at Hoyden About Town (such fun), attempted to toast the dear man in Champagne and failed – the Champagne was corked, I think we might be haunted – but succeeded with some decent red wine. And now I will sit back and just savour the moment.

This I will say: If the man is a fraction as good at being president as he is at giving a speech, he will do nicely, and a d****d sight better than his predecessor. If you didn’t catch the speech, Melissa has posted a transcript. I’m sure he had help writing it, but he makes me believe what he says, and more importantly he makes me believe HE believes what he says. We’ll see. At least he can speak in words of more than one syllable, just that fact alone makes for a nice change.

Genderisation

There has been a Panorama programme about sexual bullying (or, rather, sexual harassment) in schools, involving shockingly young children as the perpetrators. Several of the blogs I read have commented or linked, and you can read more here and here, to start with.

I think I’ll refrain from commenting much, at least for the time being (in fact the subject is almost too depressing for words, though that’s hardly constructive), but Naomi’s comment on Abby’s post highlights a related issue that’s increasingly relevant to me in my daily parenting, and which really annoys me no end. To quote:

In cartoons, an animated animal is male by default. A male sheep, say, will look roughly like a sheep, but with whatever human charateristics their particular character has. A male animated dog reading a newpaper and listening to the radio is simply a dog reading a newpaper and listening to the radio.

Female animated characters, on the other hand, have bigger eyes, longer eye-lashes, an hour-glass figure, a wiggly walk and so on, not to mention make-up (which those cartoons in which their male counterparts do not even wear clothes).

These female characters are often brought in to an otherwise all-male (i.e. all just pigs and rabbits and things) cast when the storyline requires one of the characters to fall in love, or to be almost distracted away from some world-saving task by the batting of those log eyelashes …

This puts across the following messages, and more, to children:

1. Male is the default; female is exceptional.

2. ‘Feminine’ appearance is universal and natural for females of any species.

3. The anatomical differences between males and females of any species are much, much greater than they really are.

4. The role of the female is sexual, and is defined in relation to the male.

5. The male is the agent, the female is the object of his attention.

And so on.

And it’s not only cartoons. A while back someone asked the participants at Tett inntil for tips on which boxes to look for to find “female Lego Duplo figurines”, excluding the rather tacky princess series. As a responsible parent, she wanted female role models for her daughters, police women or firewomen and similar. My question was: Well, how can you tell that they are not female? Most Duplo figurines are “degenderised”, they have eyes, nose and mouth, as do, to my knowledge, both men and women. Only the princesses have skirts. A few have beards, they can be assumed  to be men (though I have heard of bearded ladies).

This feeds directly into the argument Naomi is presenting: “Male is the default; female is exceptional.” Because, of course, there ARE female Duplo figurines – apart from the princesses. We have one from the Zoo set at home, she has longer eyelashes and a ponytail, and a more, well, made up look in general (defined lips and so on). However, most female zoo-keepers I’ve seen don’t look like that. Granted, some of them have long hair, and would naturally wear it up while at work to prevent it from getting in the way, but then, so do quite a few male keepers… And would you really put on make-up to go clean out the elephants’ cage? So why do we assume – because of course we do – that the un made-up Duplo zoo-keeper with the sensible haircut is male?

The gift of empathy

Babyslime posted a YouTube clip (and I can’t for the life of me get it to embed without messing up the layout), and says “San Diego’s republican mayor has a change of heart on gay marriage – this conference that he held, explaining what had changed for him, is so incredibly moving. It’s long, but it’s worth it. I cried a lot.” Which is pretty much what I’d say too. Watch it.

Now, personally, I don’t (as far as I know) have any family members or close friends who are “members of the gay community” (not anymore, there are a couple in the vast group of people I’ve lost touch with, though), and it would be nice to see a politician have a change of heart simply because (s)he’d thought about it properly and come to the conclusion that it IS discrimination and it IS unfair and what the world needs more than anything is LOVE so why bother about the whom, where and wherefore? Still, a change of heart is a change of heart and daring to do the opposite of what you said when you were elected when you know a lot of your supporters are really not going to like it is quite admirable. It made me hum the line “What kind of father might hate his own daughter if she were gay” – watch (and listen) here if you don’t know the song – and that is something I ask myself whenever people argue against homosexuality.