Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A Few Things

A family visitor and a stressful few weeks at work has kept me from writing.

Mancub has been having a horrible time dealing with the romantic break-up. We think he is over a hurdle, and back again it comes. We had to cut off his phone for a bit, after the father of the ex got involved. We had a house full of teenagers - part of the visitors, the neffs, Mancub and his new girlfriend ~ a very sweet, but fragile soul with whom he is developing a somewhat complex and uncertain relationship.

Yesterday I went off at a woman gathering signatures to put the grocery bag fee on the ballot. I was waiting for my bus, and she came up to me and said something about signing so the Seattle voters could have representation. I told her we already did. She looked puzzled and told me this was a chance for the Seattle people to decide if they wanted this "tax" or not. I repeated that we already have voted by electing people to represent us and make these decisions. "So you don't want to vote on being taxed?". NO, I said, that is why we have such a crappy time trying to piece together a budget because every time the people we elect try to come up with a cohesive plan, we get these insane ballot initiatives on the ballot where we are supposed to vote on schools, hospitals and roads. There is no way you make a logical budget or make any progress when every single thing is put on the ballot for the people to decide. THAT is the job of our REPRESENTATIVES, and beside why in the world
would anyone be against charging for grocery bags when only good can come from it? Why should stores front us the 20 cents so we can create more garbage and destroy our world?

I then asked her who was paying her to gather names. She didn't respond. I kept asking her. She gave me some made-up organization name and walked away.

She didn't like me. But she didn't remember me. Today she came up to me again with the same idiotic smile. I said "You talked to me yesterday" and waved her off.

Damn but I have no patience for people and their petty ballot initiatives. The next one I sign will be to ban ballot initiatives. Maybe then this city can actually develop public transportation, decent schools, create vibrant neighborhoods, and deal with the environmental crisis. Perhaps we can ever do something to fight poverty and homelessness. Wow. What a concept.

I got my big old box of goodies from Amazon today that I spent a fortune on. Finally, after going back and forth on the decision to buy or not to buy, I have the Rosetta Stone Language series for Latin American Spanish. Maybe this time I'll find something that works. Since I had to put so much cash into it, I have an added incentive.


Evan Ravitz said...

IF "representatives" represented us, then the Progressives of a century ago wouldn't have marched in the streets to get us a "Plan B": ballot initiatives.

Question: does Congress represent YOU, by allowing torture, domestic spying, phony perpetual war and debt, and dithering about health care since the 1940s?

Democracy is messy, but don't throw out "government BY the people" because it sometimes annoys you.

Ballot initiatives are the origin of most reforms, such as women's suffrage (passed in 13 states before Congress went along), direct election of Senators (4 states), publicly financed elections (by initiative in 6 of 7 states with them), medical marijuana (8 of 13 states) and increasing minimum wages (in all 6 states that tried in 2006). See for more examples and references.The media have seized on the problem initiatives. They generally kiss up to politicians and downgrade citizens.

Your claim "I have little patience for impatience" is falsified by your statement "Damn but I have no patience for people and their petty ballot initiatives." Grow up!

Arielle said...

So how's the Rosetta Stone working out for you? I have a passion to learn Italian, and tried the Stone's free lesson online and loved it.

As far as what Evan commented, you know I don't know much about the political systems - but it seems to me that if some airhead wants to petition against charging for shopping bags that she needs to get a freaking life. Petition for something that matters not some silly crap.

I like the statement "I have little patience for impatience." It's very Geddy Lee-ish. (As the Rush song with the lyrics "I can learn to resist anything but temptation." :)