Thursday, June 30, 2016

Green Party vs. Libertarian Party

As the Democrats and Republicans vie for the top spot among American political parties, there are several other political parties, collectively called "third" parties, presumably because, frankly, they'll never be first or second. The two most prominent of these third parties are, I believe, the Libertarian Party and the Green Party.

I'm not a big fan of party politics, but these two parties and their tactics are kind of fascinating to me, in the same way it's fascinating to watch a bug struggling in vain to escape a spider's web. The Green and Libertarian parties seem to primarily be mostly-ineffective spoilers to the Democratic and Republican parties, respectively (with the notable exception of Ralph Nader in Florida in the 2000 election), but I don't think they have to be.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Skipping the Line

I don't know many passionate Hillary supporters. For the most part, she continues to be favored not for who she is but who she isn't in this election. Which certainly isn't ideal for the Democrats, though they'll certainly take it.

However, some rather forceful anti-Bernie rhetoric would sometimes cross my Twitter feed. Some of the criticisms were fair (his plans aren't necessarily realistic, his temperament may not be suitable for a head of state) and some were mostly just blanket insults aimed at his supporters which, frankly, aren't doing any favors for the Democrats' image. (Pro tip: insulting your new members isn't exactly the best way to retain those new members.)

One complaint about Bernie in particular popped up time and again, and still does; a complaint that frustrates me to no end. That complaint, more than any other, eliminates any faith I may have had in the Democratic Party. A complaint lobbed, usually, from Democratic loyalists and insiders that, basically, ensures that I will never want to be a part of that institution.

Time and again, I heard the criticism that Bernie "skipped the line."

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Video Projects - Good News, Bad News

I haven't been posting any blog posts lately other than the video transcripts. This is pretty unfortunate, as I have a list of things I've been meaning to write about, and the best way to get out of the habit of writing is to not write for a while.

The video projects have been taking up a good deal of my time. That, in addition to my recent trip, has kept me from writing daily as usual. I'm determined to return to this blog, though. And, after spending the past couple of weeks getting my sea legs as far as these video go, I think I have a plan that will allow me to get back to writing regularly.

That plan involves good news and bad news for my video projects.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Charlie on the Issues Episode 1 Transcript

Today I released my first ever video, kicking of my Charlie on the Issues series. On video release days I'll be posting the transcript of that video in lieu of a regular blog post. Here's hoping I can work out my schedule so that I actually still write and post regular blog posts on non-video days, heh.

Anyway, my video:

Friday, June 10, 2016

Hillary Has My Vote

I have some reservations about Hillary Clinton, which I've discussed previously. In short, it's partly because she's been so far removed from the the reality of normal Americans for decades (even before she was First Lady), and partly because of my frustration with the two-party system, which she embodies fully.

That said, I have no reservations about voting for her this election. Here's why.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Skilled Labor

Having explored the value of unskilled labor, the question must be asked: what of skilled labor? What of the educated, the talented, and the innovative who find work plying their trade? It's all well and good to value the labors of those whose jobs are manual, tedious, and repetitive, but shouldn't the skilled workers be valued even more?

It's a fair question, and a necessary one in this capitalist society, in which value is measured by its price tag.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Unskilled Labor

I work at Fangamer, and until fairly recently the entire company was paid the same wage. From the CEO to the mailroom worker, we were all equally scrapping by, surviving by the good grace of Tucson's low cost of living.

A while back things changed a bit after we took on some fairly lucrative jobs. We're not wealthy, but we're much better off than we used to be. And as our wages rose, we finally stopped with the equal pay deal. We were to be paid according to several factors: seniority, education, teamwork, efficiency, and so on. In short, some people were to be paid more than others.

There was a concept that entered the conversation at that point. Well, that's not quite true; the concept was introduced long before, though the rule of equal pay stood fast against the idea. But when a difference in pay was introduced, the question would finally be considered:

Should we pay unskilled laborers less than skilled workers?

Monday, June 6, 2016

Choosing the Right Politician

There certainly isn't any single metric people use to select their politicians. People have used everything from years of experience and ethical effectiveness to "I feel like I could have a beer with him."

Today I'm going to share my ideal basis for choosing a politician. Hint: it's not just "I agree with them about a lot of things." That sometimes happens, but not always.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

In Defense of Politicians

The definition of a politician according to Merriam-Webster:

Politician, noun
1. a person experienced in the art or science of government; especially :  one actively engaged in conducting the business of a government
2a. a person engaged in party politics as a profession 
2b. a person primarily interested in political office for selfish or other narrow usually short-sighted reasons

It's rare to hear the word "politician" spoken without an accompanying sneer and obvious disgust at the concept. However, today I'm going to defend their existence and explain why I wouldn't mind having more of them.

Friday, June 3, 2016

My Video Project

I've been toying with the idea of a video project for a while, and this past weekend I took steps to make it a reality.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

The Gems Aren't Gay (Steven Universe)

I'm a big fan of Steven Universe. It's a really solid cartoon with lovable characters, a fun story, and some really solid themes about building strong relationships. The show depicts all sorts of relationships; some strong, some fragile. Some of the most talked about are the relationship between Pearl and Rose Quartz and the relationship between Ruby and Sapphire.

It's those relationships and the concept of a young boy being raised by a several women that gives the impression of the gems being a bunch of lesbians. I posit that they are not.