Hello, WorldCon! After a long travel day and a long schlep across the San Jose airport yesterday, I'm a little low on spoons. I'll be hanging out in the Fairmont lobby lounge this afternoon. Up for socializing, but not moving. Will probably join the con proper after dinner.
This is not just to you and not just for right now, but everyone please do feel free to come find me when I say where I am/where I'm going to be! I'll probably be on my laptop because I live on the internet, but that doesn't mean I'm ~*doing something*~
If I keep saying this it will probably wind up making thins uncomfortable for some poor random woman with bright pink/rainbow hair and a red sun hat, but the general rule of Alexandra Erin Spotting is that if you think you see me, it's probably me.
So, a lot of people have talked about the implications this will have for marginalized people (they'll be exposed to more abuse/harassment) but I have to add, I don't think it's a coincidence this is getting touted right as there's a high profile campaign to block advertisers.
Earlier in the summer there was one of those Communal Sportsball Moments where people came together to celebrate the sports, and the Twitter People made a big deal out of "Twitter is so great for this but it's a shame you have to follow the right accounts to even see it."
And we were all like, no, that's no a shame, that's how Twitter works. Everyone who wants to see the sports is following the sports. If it's too hard to find the things you want to see then sure work on that but deciding what we want to see is a solution for a different problem.
My username is "almost @ WorldCon" because we are in San Jose but because we elected to get into town a little early we're staying in a different hotel tonight. Tomorrow we're going to try to get to the Winchester Mystery House before the con really heats up.
Flying all the way across the country in one day is pretty rough. If it were just me I'd probably do it as one flight to get it over with, but that doesn't work as well for the rest of our party.
If we have to do it again, I'm going to suggest breaking it up with a short stay in the middle part of the country. We've got family in Nebraska, Kansas City, and Colorado.
I 100% believe that George Conway's animus towards Donald Trump is real and sincere. You can't *fake* a feud with Donald Trump. He would require himself to be the clear winner in any staged altercation.
He can play up animosity with another ally that he sees a powerful male figure (Bannon, Putin) because that helps him assert that he's his own man, but George Conway is a guy whose wife works for him. There's no power for him to push back against.
So this notion that "every religion" has the same problems as the Catholic Church does - certainly other denominations have abusers. But institutional power on a scope and scale of the Catholic Church is pretty much limited to the Catholic Church.
The Catholic Church is older than just about any royal house, government, or corporation you can name. It has had literal and figurative princes in its history. It sees its temporal power as being outside of and greater than secular powers, and often manages to back that up.
Like, a lot of religions, the leaders would like to believe that their laws should in some sense supersede or at least work in auxiliary with secular laws, but there isn't really a Christian denomination like the Catholic Church that has the opportunity to do so on the same scale
I can admit that I am learning things about Amy Siskind tonight that I had the privilege of never having needed to learn before.
I already regret my "It's okay, she's not Louise Mensch." from earlier after being reminded of her comments on BLM and Black activists, which... I knew they were bad? But I did not put them in the "harmful" box like I did Mensch's false prophecies?
And this does not mean we have to kick her out of The Resistance because The Resistance isn't or should not be a group, should be seen as a coherent structure with any leaders who can lose their positions in the first place.
I make most of my money on here by talking about news and politics, giving resistance pep talks, interpreting Trump tweets and other regime actions. Just Little Resistance Things.
But I refuse to make my account just that, to make it a purpose-specific Hashtag Resistance account
And I also categorically won't make a separate account for just that stuff. And I won't do silly games to try to artificially increase my following like "RT if impeachment soon" or "RT to show Putin's puppet what you think" or "follow for more details as it unfolds".
Amy Siskind is on the right side of a lot but she is not infallible and when she makes a mistake (as she did) and is corrected (as she was) she should have the grace to learn, amend herself, and move on (as she did not).
She is neither equality incarnate nor the Resistance Boss.
The idea that any person can "stand for equality" so successfully that anyone who has an unkind word to say about them is thus "the enemy of equality" is ludicrous. That's Trumpism. We don't have Great Men. We don't have Great Women. No one is perfect and no one's indispensable.
As a very wise but admittedly flawed man once said, "We don't look to be ruled."
Amy Siskind wanted to vote Sarah Palin into the White House over that man in 2012. I know she's had some Good Content since then, but come on.
The one Sunday I wrote 30,000 words notwithstanding, one of the more surprising things about @4TheWords is I think I actually am less in danger of hyperfocusing on one thing and burning out. The game structure is teaching me how to leave things and come back to them.
Case in point, my Legend of Zelda/Minecraft mashup game, I've been keeping to-dos and brainstorming/devlog files in a project on 4TW. Normally if I don't binge on gamedev then the project just sort of falls by the side of the road, but I've been working on it a little a day.
Today I added map saving and loading, which obviously is a huge part of the game, given that the world is meant to be mutable.
Weighing in on the "Maleficient sympathetic backstory yes/no" thing - I don't know why it has to be one or the other. There are a lot of different versions of sleeping beauty, there can be multiple tellings of Disney's telling. Heck, there are. Sleeping Beauty, Maleficent, OUAT..
...that thing where everybody's kids are in high school, probably others I'm not thinking of.
Does Maleficent *need* to a sympathetic backstory? I mean, no, but it's nice to have a version of the story where "true love's kiss" isn't a doof she met once for 15 minutes who is cool enough with the idea of marrying her.
I think about Christopher Robin Milne sometimes when I see people like parent bloggers or vloggers who super involve their kids in what they're doing.
I feel like the one thing you can say in Alan Milne's defense is that there wasn't really a model for what happens when the twee little nursery rhymes you write about your adorable little son become an international success.
I laugh at (and rewatch) the "Books? For Christmas?" kid every year but man do I hope he lives that down.
So, I don't it's likely that Omarosa Manigualt Newman recorded anything actually explosive or hugely revelatory about the Trump criminal enterprise or important policy decisions, for a few reasons.
First, there's been no intimation of such coming from her. It's all been focused on things that affect her: look, here's proof I was fired without Trump's knowledge. While I don't think she would have had a hard time recording other things, I don't think she felt the impetus to.
I don't think she would have led with "Here's Donald Trump on tape pledging allegiance to Putin" if she had something like that, but she would have been hyping it. Instead she played the game of mentioning he's on tape saying the N-word... other people's tapes, elsewhere.
I love the way "I am John Galt" has become like the Randian Spartacus moment. The whole point of the book was the idea that someone like John Galt was a singular and irreplaceable figure.
Like, you're John Galt? Really? You invented a miraculous one of a kind invention that could power all of society? If you leave and go stomping off in a snit to live in a ditch, society is going to miss you? Really? Try it. Go ahead.
The reality is that if you go back and look at any of the great technological advances, you'll find there were multiple people working towards the same goal. There wasn't one person who invented the telephone, or the radio, or the modern steam engine, or the car, or the airplane.
Just caught up on Making It. I am really enjoying this trend of relentlessly positive and affirming reality competitions (like Nailed It!) and also Robert is a hack and I can't believe the judges fall for his nonsense.
It's like every single project he does has got some obvious time-saving corner cuts that he's explaining away as a conceptual thing.
Okay, well, I guess his first project wasn't so much on the corner-cutting. But he clearly came up with a showstopping concept that he was determined to do regardless of what the theme was and then halfway shoehorned it in.
The difference between last year's Unite The Right rally and this year's should be enough to kill the idea that "attention" in the form of vocal and public disapproval somehow helps or emboldens Nazis.
If you think they can use images of resistance as a recruitment tool, just wait until you see what they can do when they're left alone.
Extremists benefit more from images that present their beliefs as normal (like a peaceful march down main street USA) than ones that present them as unpopular and revolting.
I don't care who defends James Gunn but frankly I would love it if I saw fewer of the defenses that centered on or even invoked "but he was clearly joking!" and "but how can you have Guardians without him?", as these are the same defenses levied for actual Nazis and abusers.
When I say I'd consider it a win if a Gunn-free Guardians 3 does well and helps dismantle the Great Man theory, I don't mean a win over Nazis.
They already got him fired; I don't think that's a good thing but I think it's a done thing.
It's wrong to sacrifice anyone to Nazis because it's wrong to sacrifice anyone to Nazis. It's not wrong because this one guy is an indispensable Great Man who makes things we like.
The writing on this season of Voltron seems pretty uneven. Pidge's gender is handled inconsistently, Romelle's personality seems to change drastically every time she's featured, and then there's the much hyped but not actually great queer rep.
Dang if the ending isn't impressive
If the showrunners hadn't been so eager to pat themselves on the back for and hype up the queer representation... I mean, we're used to bread crumbs, and we were given bones with some meat left on them, but we were promised a feast.
Much as I love how quickly we've been getting more Voltron I kind of have to wonder if the rapid fire production isn't doing the show and its fans a disservice. What if they just... took a little bit longer to think things through?
If it's a terrible idea to elect a businessman to run the country like a business (and it is), how great an idea could it be to elect a personal injury lawyer based on how great he's doing in a lawsuit?
I know this makes me a ~*shill*~ but I really do think it's a good idea to elect more politicians.
The problem is we haven't been giving them enough... direction. We've been expecting them to oversee themselves.
Elect people who know how to get things done in Washington and then never let them know a moment's peace until they do them.