Monday, April 02, 2007

Communication

The right to be heard does not automatically include the right to be taken seriously.
- Hubert Humphrey

The problem with communication ... is the illusion that it has been accomplished.
-George Bernard Shaw

The newest computer can merely compound, at speed, the oldest problem in the relations between human beings, and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem, of what to say and how to say it.
- Edward R Murrow

Speak when you are angry - and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret.
- Dr Laurence J Peter

We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.
- Epictetus

Communication works for those who work at it.
- John Powell

Examine what is said, not who speaks.
-Arabian Proverb

46 comments:

James said...

Food for thought by Steven D.

catnip said...

Yes and that's why I got more than a bit steamed about Booman saying this about me and others last week while others (even those who have no idea who the hell I even am) simply nodded in agreement and piled on:

They aren't principled anti-warriors, or true-blue feminists, or gay rights activists, or free speech absolutists. They're just trolls. Disruptive, sexist, homophobic, spiteful, mean trolls.

That type of false labeling is not productive, to say the least, and is just ludicrous considering what actual misogyny and hatred really looks like and what happens when it's expressed by people like those who attacked Sierra who are so vile, disgusting and dangerous.

BM's lies are also potentially dangerous to those of us who were grouped together in such a reckless, lying fashion. Think about it. What happens to those who are believed to be "sexist" and "homophobic"? Nothing nice, obviously. (Just look at the rape porn mcat received last week). You don't think there are twisted people out there who act on their delusions?

That was a smear of the absolute worst kind but it came during the same week that we were also likened to lynchers, torturers and mass murderers (at least MB apologized for that last one) just because people felt they needed to demonize us in the worst ways possible.

Words on blogs have power.

Throw around labels like that and you're just giving others fuel for their fires and who knows how many of them might actually be so unstable that they may decide to take some sort of destructive action towards us? And I'm not talking about mere words.

(There are real trolls. There are real mysogynists. One is guaranteed to pop up in this thread to prove himself as both of those things once again because that's what he does, day in and day out. He should be ignored. He doesn't deserve anyone's attention.)

Btw, I'm still working on the threat I received last week. ISPs need to take quicker action on these types of complaints and ought to have specialized departments or people to deal with them instead of having them sent to their general "abuse" e-mail addresses. My e-mail said "online threat". You'd think someone would have noticed that. I am pusruing other avenues as well. Nuff said about that.

James said...

Once one can be dehumanized (simply making individual persons or groups into scapegoats with demeaning labels seems to suffice) we do indeed open the door to all manner of nastiness. In studying the creation of torturers, Mika Haritos-Fatourous spoke of the obedience to the authority of violence. Dehumanization of the victims, both as part of the distal cultural Zeitgeist and more immediately within the prison camp sufficed to make all manner of cruel behaviors do-able. Over time the perpetrators and the bystanders alike become desensitized to what is going on around them.

Anyhoo, the processes at work to make posting a photo of a female blogger with a noose next to her are similar at least in degree to those that make taking pix of a prisoner being led naked on a leash by one of the prison guards.

James said...

Something I wrote about three years ago:

In Bob Altemeyer's book, The Authoritarian Specter (1996), the author devotes one chapter to a series of attitude change experiments that he conducted during the early to mid 1990s. For those of you unfamiliar with how social psychologists conceptualize the term "attitude", the following definition will help: an attitude is basically a judgment or evaluation of some person, product, or idea. That judgment may be positive, negative, or indifferent (think along the lines of good/bad, favorable/unfavorable, agree/disagree).

Altemeyer's series of attitude change experiments followed a basic pre-test/post-test design. Participants were first asked to complete a questionnaire on their attitudes toward some particular group or idea (e.g., homosexuals, feminists, the validity of the Nazi Holocaust that led to the deaths of millions of Jews) and also were asked to complete Altemeyer's Right-Wing Authoritarianism (RWA) Scale. A few weeks later, the same participants would be randomly assigned to either a hate speech condition (where they would read some tract or pamphlet containing hate speech) or a neutral condition, and were subsequently asked to complete the same attitude questionnaire that they had completed a few weeks earlier.

Altemeyer then compared pre and post test attitudes toward the specific target (see above) in order to determine if either of the treatment conditions led to a change in attitudes toward the target. The basic upshot of Altemeyer's experiments can be summed up as follows: as a general rule, exposure to hate literature led to a significantly less favorable attitude toward the target of that literature, whereas participants in the neutral conditions typically showed no significant change in attitudes. What I find especially interesting (and troubling) is that this effect was found regardless of participants' level of RWA. Low RWA participants were affected just as strongly by hate literature as high RWA participants.

One can see readily why hate propaganda is so effective. People, regardless of ideology, seem to be easily suckered by hate propaganda - even when they should know better. Hitler's observation in Mein Kampf that, "[t]he receptivity of the great masses is extremely limited, their intelligence is small, and their forgetfulness is enormous," appears to have some empirical validity.

catnip said...

In studying the creation of torturers, Mika Haritos-Fatourous spoke of the obedience to the authority of violence.

I'm not familiar with his work but will check it out. Thank you.

I often promote Alice Miller's book: For Your Own Good: Hidden Cruelty in Child-Rearing and the Roots of Violence which I think has invaluable insight into pre-WW2 Germany and the development of authoritative parenting styles that were the precursor to an acceptance of Naziism.

Philip Zimbardo also has a new book out that looks insightful as well, although I don't believe in "evil" as a sufficient descriptor for psychopathic, pathological or sociopathic behaviour - but that's another discussion.

Anyhoo, the processes at work to make posting a photo of a female blogger with a noose next to her are similar at least in degree to those that make taking pix of a prisoner being led naked on a leash by one of the prison guards.

Good point. It's all very sick behaviour.

Desensitization may be necessary for human beings so we can endure massive amounts of immediate pain when we need to survive but when it's coupled with indifference towards others suffering, that's where the danger lies.

catnip said...

One can see readily why hate propaganda is so effective. People, regardless of ideology, seem to be easily suckered by hate propaganda - even when they should know better.

Very true. Our hate speech laws in Canada are definitely more strict than what you have in the US and I just don't buy into the idea that those who spew it (especially on the airwaves) ought to be able to do so unrestrained so we can "keep an eye on them".

We know what they're about. We don't need more examples and their rhetoric is truly poisonous. Of what use is that in the public square? The Coulters. The Limbaughs. The (Bill) Donohues? They're extremist exhibitionists with hateful agendas. Why should anyone give them the time of day? They should be living in anonymous oblivion, afaic. They have far too great a reach and the ability to affect millions of people. That makes for an unhealthy and paranoid society.

scribe said...

The one thing that so many seem to forget is how powerful we ARE. As intelligent adults with free will, we here in this country WE DO STILL HAVE FULL CONTROL of how much we choose to expose ourselves TO negative influences like hate speech or hate propaganda.

We do not "have to tune in" to the hate filled talk shows. We do not HAVE TO spend hours on blogs filled with hateful interchanges. WE DO NOT HAVE TO! We are NOT POWERLESS! No one is chaining us to these computer screens when what they are showering us with is hateful, draining hostilities!

Yet many of us DO! You have to ask why. Does this kind of verbal violence (thats how it feels to me anyway) exert some kind of addictive "draw" that we succumb to? It's not reasonable behavior for humans to deliberately expose themselves to what they KNOW is causing them great distress or emotional pain..and throwing their lives off balance..fracturing their friendships, making us act and behave in ways not in synch with who they really "are".

I don't claim to understand this, but I know for myself, this past few months I have had to drasitically reduce my exposure to the online ugliness that is breaking out all over. Too much of it literally makes me feel physically ill. And to see so many or for along time, begin to write and react in super-reactive ways to each other that I'd not seen from them before, well, that is plain damned painful to watch. It's like watching people, some you really care about, turn on each other and try to peck each other to death.

supersoling said...

Here's my thing scribe,
super-reactive...hard to miss that....
also hard to miss the transparent code language in the recent frontpage posts here too, and the questions about commenting after saying we wouldn't.
The blockquoting of comments that are posted at other blogs for pirhana entertainment. Or justifying weaponizing someone's children.

We can choose to ignore those things or we can choose to counter them. You call it super-reactive. I call it calling bullshit. You may approve of those things or not. You may choose to ignore those things or not. Free will.

I have no problem telling people who justify those things to go fuck themselves in the outside world. So any time I do it online is not some sign that I find it easier to do because it's somehow anonymous or cowardly. The people I've said that to online could expect the same from me IRL. Just because i've never reacted that way online isn't a sign that I've lost my cool and/or my marbles.

btw,
there are comments in these recent threads that are causing a friend concern for their anonymity and RL safety. You all figure out which ones they are.

catnip said...

You all figure out which ones they are.

If you are truly concerned about someone's safety, e-mail one of the contributors here pointing out where those comments appear.

supersoling said...

No,
it's obvious enough. If you're truly concerned about it you'll call it across the board. You should know, based on the shit that's happened to you recently.

DavidByron said...

We do not "have to tune in" to the hate filled talk shows. We do not HAVE TO spend hours on blogs filled with hateful interchanges. WE DO NOT HAVE TO! We are NOT POWERLESS!

Well you'd have to be able to recognise hate first and most liberals cannot. Catnip for example is a feminist - a movement which hates men. She's completely acclimatised to the hate so she cannot appreciate what she is doing.

In fact neither can most so-called liberals. They only say whatever their neighbours say. If everyone else says hating men is normal that's what they say. It would never even occur to most of them to call men a minority even though they call women (a majority) all the time. Hating men is perversely approved; you can see it all the time.

In fact if you go to any feminist site such as OG&P you say a huge amount of male loathing. Every couple of days one of the men apologises for being born with a penis.

Of course it's not called hate because that would be admiting wrong. And it's only the feminists who do it intentionally. The rest have just been caught in a net of negative and hate-filled expectations.

Another example of a group that is regularly attacked in American culture is foreigners in countries currently being bombed by the US and Palestinians (or do I repeat myself?)

Such observations of collective hate or "exceptionalism" were one of the reasons Ductape set up this board judging by some of his early comments. Why? Because if you go around, as he did, and as I do, pointing out the hatreds that liberals enjoy secretly, but don't want to admit to, then you will get censored. Three things always get me banned: criticism of US troops (those poor babies) for killing foreigners, Palestininian rights and equality for men.

Just as he complained about being called "anti-semite" so catnip calls me "misogynist". It's the same pattern of hate repeated.

catnip said...

No,
it's obvious enough. If you're truly concerned about it you'll call it across the board. You should know, based on the shit that's happened to you recently.


I'll repeat what I said, super. If you are concerned about someone's safety, e-mail one of the contributors here. This is not a game or a power struggle. You brought this up. We are not going to go through a multitude of threads. That's a waste of time, especially if someone is under threat. Do something about it right now so we can deal with it. This is in your hands.

scribe said...

Super, let me try to clarify where I am coming from, ok? My comment was not directed at you or anyone in particular, or intended to critize, or to preach. It came from a place in me deeply concerned for the effects of all of this on good people. And from knowing that if we don't take care of our own state of being, and staying somewhat in balance ourselves, whatever we are trying to do to right genuine wrongs, or to protect those more vulnerable than we are, who we truly do need to protect, are just not likely to be AS effective as they could be.

I am also coming off a lifetime as a front line combat soldier who, like you, never hesitated to step up and fight like HELL, using whatever weapons I could lay my hands on to protect others. Sometimes that worked. But for a long time, I often I did NOT get the kind of outcome from it I was trying for.

Not because it was wrong of me to take the stand I was taking. But because I was using ineffective weapons for the particular battle I was engaged in, and didn't understand that yet.

The key, I finally figured out, to knowing whether I was using an adequate and effective weapon could be determined by asking the question, "Is this weapon working? Am I getting anywhere using this one? Is it actually getting the job done?? Is it even capable of getting it done?"

If the answer is no, that doesn't mean I should back off a rightful battle I need to be fighting: it only meant that maybe this particular weapon wasn't designed to fight this particular enemy very well. In fact, maybe continuing to fire it anyway, is why I am exhausting myself or driving myself mad with frustration?

There are most certainly times when those who can, NEED to step up to the line to protect the vulnerable like our children. I see clearly this is where you are coming from, Super. Dissaproval from me for that, you couldn't get if you wanted to! And I most certainly am NOT suggesting you to ignore the need to protect kids, either.

My comment above was directed more generally, in an attempt to point out that for those like me, who can suimply get "caught up" in these kinds of warlike cycles, there is often a way to choose to break out of it, for our own good.

Hope that clarifies..:) And please take good care of yourself in this one.

ms_xeno said...

catnip, super is probably in a tizzy because I made a joke about Homeland Security yesterday. That's about the level of logic that I'd expect from him these days. super, to reiterate: It's a JOKE.

scribe, I always enjoy your insights even if I don't have time to comment on each one. You should absolutely take breaks whenever and wherever you want. I have been there for the addiction thing too and sometimes the healthiest thing to do is to just walk out and shut the door. I've had to do that, too.

ms_xeno said...

Also, ever since the blow up about MSOC's kids, I've been thinking (not for the first time) about our culture's obesession with "PROTECT THE CHILDREN !" As a non-parent I try to respect people's desires vis-a-vis their children.

On the other hand, I have also seen adults in this culture behave in an extremely hypocritical and self-serving fashion, using their children as some kind of universal get-out-of-jail-free card to excuse their own stupidity or short-sightedness. Adults with children also frequently have the tendency to expect other adults to adhere at all times to the wishes and desires of what the parent thinks is right for the children even in situations that do not affect children directly. It can be a huge headache.

All of us, I'm sure, know that PROTECT THE CHILDREN has been used throughout history (at least in the U.S.) to provide a fig leaf for some truly stupid, if not outright destructive, crap.

I want to write a column but I'm busy and under the weather a bit now. Just wanted to throw that out there though...

James said...

btw,
there are comments in these recent threads that are causing a friend concern for their anonymity and RL safety. You all figure out which ones they are.


I'm trying to meet some deadlines irl. You'll need to specify the comments in question. That, and honestly I'm no good at reading minds.

CookTing said...

Ms_Xeno: You could probably help everybody involved by keeping your opinion about Super's level of logic to yourself... at least for the time-being, while some folks are still interested in working through the disagreement to find some common ground. Your comments serve nothing but your own ego, and perhaps, to reassure catnip that you have her blind allegiance.

OTOH, catnip, I agree with you that Super's not being helpful by telling you that you should know what he means without him providing any further assistance.

Super: if you're really dedicated to doing what's right, why not give catnip a list of the comments you are concerned about, to make it easier for her to decide whether to take action, and to do so if necessary? Regardless of whether you think she's capable of recognizing the offenses you claim, wouldn't it be worth the effort if you are truly concerned?

** apologies if this is a duplicate post. I hate blogger **

James said...

CookTing: seems reasonable enough to me. Let's lay of slagging each other, and if Supersoling has a legit concern, he needs to clue us in. I do not have ESP, nor is it helpful to assume that the rest of us here have it either.

James said...

That was supposed to be "lay off". Not only do I lack ESP powers, but the powers to spell correctly.

catnip said...

Your comments serve nothing but your own ego, and perhaps, to reassure catnip that you have her blind allegiance.

There is no need for you to step in here and insult people. No one has my "blind allegiance". That's not the way I function in my life. Anyone who knows me knows that.

Let's try to get the conversation back on track here by stopping these attacks.

That's what "communication" - the topic of this post - is all about.

Anonymous said...

Hey catnip,

I didn't mean to insult you. I actually meant to say "... that she has your blind allegiance", not the other way around. If there's some other way of interpreting Ms. Xeno's remark about Super's level of logic, I'd love to hear it explained.

Of course, I don't presume to be able to tell others what is or isn't acceptable over here, but I honestly don't see her remarks serving any worthwhile purpose.

Now, the "think of the children" comment might make for an interesting discussion, if it wasn't drenched in context that made it another sideways insult at super in defense of you.

James said...

Some more food for thought: Angry/negative people can be bad for your brain. Makes for a useful read. The ideas in that article are ones I've been pondering a good deal recently. Actually, I've felt inspired to burn a few bridges as of late as a result. That's another story for another time perhaps.

The "angry people" the author refers to are not 'folks who are pissed off at the unjust state of the world', and so on, but rather individuals who are incessantly negative, whose very reason for existence is to find fault with whomever they associate or with whatever their situation. They're a drain to be around.

Things to think about as we (whether at a Meta-blog like this or elsewhere) think about things like comments policies, forums where we choose to hang out, etc.

supersoling said...

It was expressed to me that comments by ms-xeno regarding meetups are causing a friend to feel threatened. Especially since other comments in other threads regarding her place of employment were deleted at her request.

I thought it obvious enough to anyone paying what I would consider proper attention across the board to these issues.

ms-xeno,
anyone who knows me understands that snark is not my idea of a statement. I'm a little more blunt than that by preference.
So, in other words,
your HlS quips haven't impressed me enough to like them or not.

Arcturus said...

Fascinating article James, coming at a time when I'm trying to refocus. Not sure I get how the 'mirror neurons' work - will have to read more - tho it makes sense w/ more familiar concepts of behavioral & linguistic mirroring.

I can see the 'emotional contagion' bit in both my interpersonal & group interactions at different times. And in both traditional & new agey uses of ritual. Tho there's also another dynamic, where I often find myself in revolt to a prevailing group mood, be it optimism or despair. Wonder if that itself is a form of 'negativity' as laid in out in that research?

More disturbing personally, as someone who has cultivated it, was the connection of right brain activity with anger and frustration. But then if that's the case, chronic depression isn't too inexplicable, eh?

I've been thinking a lot recently about what I call the School of CareLess Writing - which is to say, writing that could care less as to how it might affect another human being reading it. Not that it doesn't have its place(s) manifesto! - but it's a not a great communicative strategy for much more than a shouting match. I particularly liked:

And there's this one we hear most often, especially in reference to comment moderation--"if you can't say whatever the hell you want to express your anger, you can't be authentic and honest." While that may be true, here's what the psychologists say:

"Psychologists now say that this is a dangerous myth. Some people use this theory as a license to hurt others. Research has found that "letting it rip" with anger actually escalates anger and aggression and does nothing to help you (or the person you're angry with) resolve the situation.


I do know that there a lots of comment threads I've got an opinion on - but see nothing to be gained by adding log to the fire.

I see more attempts to exert linguistic 'power over' others, than genuine attempts to enagage in dialogue. Which, btw, is different from debate - a taged contest performed for the benefit of an audience, & whose 'winner' is determined more by linguistic skill than anything else.

As Robin Tolmach Lakoff puts it in Talking Power: The Politics of Language in Daily Life (Basic Books, 1990):

Analyzing the Language Game

Whether in power or out of it, one plays the language game. Even one who has the upper hand and is an abuser of others will in turn be abused by someone still higher or more skilled, or by someone who possesses particular expertise. Only by learning how power is assigned and deetermined through linguistic structure, and what power is equitable, what not, can we work to develop fairer ways of communicating. Then, at last, we can work to develop fairer ways of communicating. Then, at last, we can stop being mystified and victimized by those who wield the power inherent in langauge. Then we can decide, in Humpty Dumpty's word, "which is to be master."


True dialogue,whether between individuals or groups, is the one of hardest tasks one can take on.

& w/ that ramble, I'm gonna go see if I can't shut my left brain off & take my right brain out for a little exercise today . . .

Arcturus said...

oops, strike:
Then, at last, we can work to develop fairer ways of communicating.

ms_xeno said...

"Now, the "think of the children" comment might make for an interesting discussion, if it wasn't drenched in context that made it another sideways insult at super in defense of you." -- anon, or is it Cook ? Whatever.

Hmmm... Catnip has children and grandchildren as well, no ? She may very well have radically different ideas than Yours Truly regarding what amounts to legit protection of children and what amounts to making excuses of them.

It was expressed to me that comments by ms-xeno regarding meetups are causing a friend to feel threatened. -- Supersoling

Ah, I'm beginning to see how this works. Anything I say or do is fair game, because I have upset super's clique. This will continue until I either shut up or agree to leave the space. Ho hum. Not very shrewd, you two. I've seen this kind of technique on other boards and it is not anything new. It is also about as subtle as a freshly chopped onion tossed in a bucket of room-temperature fishguts.

I hate passive aggressive b.s. If you find me such a menacing presence, perhaps you should persuade the rest of the dashboard of that, if you can. If you must behave like bullies and cowards, at least be proud cowards and bullies, eh ?

James said...

Super - your friend is more than welcome to email me if need be. I kind of prefer that those who actually have a concern whatever it may be come to one of us directly than go through a mediator.

CookTing said...

Ms. Xeno: the anon was me. I hit enter by accident, and tried to post a follow-up to take credit for that comment, but that follow-up comment seems to have disappeared into the void. I didn't think it'd be too difficult for anyone reading the thread to make the connection, though.

As I said... differences in opinion regarding protecting children vs. using 'protecting children' as an excuse would make for an interesting discussion, but it's not one that I'm interested in having here and now. It was apparent to me at least since Saturday (when I started catching up on all this) that supersoling, catnip, and yourself might have differences of opinion regarding whether specific cases might fall under the former or the latter. I see no reason to further complicate the apparent disagreement by weighing in on that topic.

Now, with regard to cliques, passive-aggression, bullying and cowardice: if your words are directed toward anything I've said, feel free to explain how you've interpreted my words to find such fault, and I'll do my best to clarify my position. I'm not an admin here, and I have no interest in convincing the admins of anything, at least in regard to you.

catnip said...

Hey catnip,

I didn't mean to insult you. I actually meant to say "... that she has your blind allegiance", not the other way around.


That's an insult as well, no matter who you're talking about.

It was expressed to me that comments by ms-xeno regarding meetups are causing a friend to feel threatened.

One person invites another one to an art show and that is seen as a threat? The other person does have the right to decline the invitation, you know.

As James said, people with concerns about their safety relating to anything written here should contact one or all of us directly (and immediately). It shouldn't have taken prompting and nudging for this information to come out and that person is still more than welcome to contact us.

DavidByron said...

No wonder George Bush has so much energy!

The "angry people" the author refers to are not 'folks who are pissed off at the unjust state of the world', and so on, but rather individuals who are incessantly negative, whose very reason for existence is to find fault with whomever they associate or with whatever their situation. They're a drain to be around.

Live in a bubble surrounded by assorted sycophants and you too can find the wisdom of "Dubbya"

James said...

people with concerns about their safety relating to anything written here should contact one or all of us directly (and immediately).

This needs to be re-iterated. If and when any such concern occurs, please contact us directly and asap (i.e., the person with the concern). Emails concerning this blog are treated with respect and will be acted upon promptly. That should go without saying, but just in case, we're saying it.

ms_xeno said...

cookting wrote:

...I'll do my best to clarify my position...

Save your fingers and bandwidth. I figure the fact that we've never exchanged words before now and that this was the way you chose to introduce yourself pretty much says it all. Yes, you were insulting and you intended to be, I'm sure. Just stay the hell away from me, cook. I'll be more than glad to return the favor.

ms_xeno said...

catnip:

...The other person does have the right to decline the invitation, you know.

Except in Paris, New York and LA, where the art world has really big teeth and knows how to use them. ;)

scribe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Janet said...

I am so sorry scribe! I wish there was something I could do.

As for me... my son needs my attention, too. For so long we had to "attack" the special education people just to keep him in school. Now that he's in a good school we can focus on autism and other ways to help him. So we'll be doing bloodwork and following other leads. Autism is an epidemic in our country.

I'm also getting enough stress from doing alot of street work and other activities.

I still have no real idea what this is all about but do not want to lose anymore friends this year simply because I didn't repsond in time or because I failed to take sides.

I've taken sides... I'm out there trying to stop more death, more bloodshed and to put an end to the murderous lies.

There's a war going on out there. And it needs to be stopped.

That's what I'll be doing.

I came to the blogs in order to find shelter, sanctuary... understanding. I've found some amazing friends, family. But things are getting very scary out there... there is so much to do and I'm really so for the infighting here.

I'll continue to post when I can and put up photos of what's going down in the streets and at vigils.

I see my friends fighting in here... and my friends in Portland are all arrested from fighting... Bush.

Peace. Love. Patience.

ms_xeno said...

Good luck to you and your partner, scribe.

Janet, I don't really care so much about sides. Under the circumstances I agree that they don't mean a hill of beans, but I would appreciate a confirmation from you that you did not interpret an invite from me to come to a Northside coffeeshop as some kind of veiled threat. I would just as soon not take super's word as gospel. It was a skeevy thing for him to say and I'm pretty repulsed by it. There's enough real-life threat out there without unscrupulous fools manufacturing more where it doesn't even exist.

That's one of the thing that often saddens me at marches and demos, too. It's impossible to strike up a conversation with strangers without a skeptical veil coming over their faces, usually. As if an interest in a "Hands Off Iran" button or whatever would only come from a plainclothes cop. I would laugh at experiencing this over and over again at the last march (and others) if I didn't feel like crying.

There has to be some point or some place where constant suspicion doesn't rule the day. At least I'd like to think so.

James said...

Janet, I don't really care so much about sides. Under the circumstances I agree that they don't mean a hill of beans, but I would appreciate a confirmation from you that you did not interpret an invite from me...as some kind of veiled threat.

Yup. Some clarification would be helpful if for no other reason than peace of mind. I'd much prefer to take your word directly than that of a third-party.

Anyhoo. Hang in there Janet. You're doing great work. Keep fighting the good fight.

Janet said...

Xeno, I don't know anything about an invite... I'm lost on that. But I wouldn't see it as a threat, veiled or otherwise. It's been a long week at my home and I basically stayed off the computer for a while. Please repeat it here or have Catnip email it to me. Thanks

Recently I asked Catnip to delete the conversation about where I work from here as that did creep me out as I'm sure you can understand. It was all taken care of immediately as Catnip knew how my place of employment on the net could be a various dangerous thing for me. Hell, I just got rid of the rent a cop that had been hassling me at work.

Nothing more than that. We just gotta be careful. I know what threats are. I get them from time to time.

I didn't know this was an issue here. Sorry. I am a bit cautious nowadays about meeting people as any of us might be.

I did look for you at the rally. But it was so huge. Alot of people say they will see me at places and I never meet up with them.

Yes, I did get very scared about my job being posted on here. It was a mistake and catnip cleared it up.

Hope that clears things up.

James: Please know that you, too, are in my heart.

ms_xeno said...

Janet, I totally get the work issue. I wasn't complaining about that, believe me. Nearly all my LJ posts that are job-related are restricted to friends-only, so I get that. Don't worry.

But if you read supersoling's comments upthread (about post #8) he refers in a deliberately vague fashion to the comments I made in the previous thread. I mentioned to you only that I was going to have an art show next month and since we both live in PDX, I thought you might be interested in seeing it.

super seems to have some bizarre idea that this comment of mine constituted some kind of attempt to stalk or harrass. I think he's talking out his ass. Though of course he kept his accusations vague enough so I can't absolutely say that he was talking about us. It's pretty obvious, though.

Anyway, it doesn't matter so long as I am right in my assumption that you weren't scared off by my comments. Hell, it sounds like you didn't even see them. In a couple of weeks I'll be posting a general invite on LJ, so my offer still stands.

Peace, Janet.

Arcturus said...

thanks for clearing that up, Janet. know that you're in our thoughts.

best of luck w/ that rough situation scribe - my heart goes to you both. do stay in touch when you can.

I've a few things pressing on me these days, & haven't been around as much - but am checking in on occasion

scribe said...

Thanks arturus, and all, for the good wishes. We're going to be fine: we made a deal that we can cry over it all when we want to, as long as we laugh just as much, and so far so good! So many of the really hard things in life truly DO have their ridiculous (and pretty hilarious) aspects, too! The really strange aspect of it all is we have friends our age who are moving in here right next to us, and one of that couple is also facing a terminal illness, involving the exact same organ failure! So here we are, the "fearsome foursome": a bunch of old lesbians in a building packed full of very pious old school Christians! (is there a stage play in this,or what?!)

catnip said...

(((hugs))) scribe.

Thanks for popping in to explain what happened, Janet. Onward! as scribe would say.

James said...

Hang in there, scribe!

DavidByron said...

I don't know if Maryscott's reading this, but she should probably know that a lot of old MLW diaries have disappeared for some reason. Seems to be diaries with the id around 1000 to 2000 ish, (some older diaries are still visible) but I haven't looked into it much. You get this error message;

We're sorry, but we were unable to locate that page.

Please return to the front page.


Like this

Perhaps it's just me getting it.

ms_xeno said...

scribe:

is there a stage play in this,or what?!

Sounds like it would make a great play. I'll settle for a sitcom, though, so long as there are no laugh tracks. I hate laugh tracks. ;)

DavidByron said...

You know, I think it would be useful for me to have diary posting rights here just so we get an open thread every now and then.

Anyway here's a dKos diary comparing the captivity of the 15 Brits with US torture at Guantanomo. Wow. What an original idea for a diary.

It occurs to me that this doesn't go far enough. By the sound of it the British captives had a better time of it than domestic US prison conditions in male prisons.