This is Laura Koerbeer's Typepad Profile.
Join Typepad and start following Laura Koerbeer's activity
Join Now!
Already a member? Sign In
Laura Koerbeer
Recent Activity
Merry Christmas and happy holidays and so on to you all. I've been reading this blog since 2004, which seems both an awfully long time and an awfully quick passage of time. I don't come around much any more--too much dog rescue going on in my life plus I got elected President (of an HOA) and I'm working on a short story with illustrations. Besides politics is too fucking depressing. But anyway I am glad you all are still here and I miss everyone who doesn't come by any more.
Toggle Commented Dec 25, 2014 on Your Open Thread of Holiday Cheer at Obsidian Wings
1 reply
Dr. S, no, I don't think so. I'm not trying to get it published that way. I never self-identified as a writer (I'm an artist), so, after writing the book I sent it in to Kirkus just looking for an objective professional response. I am not out to make money or get famous or anything. I can email a copy to anyone who wants to read it that way..
Toggle Commented Dec 25, 2014 on My favorite books of 2014: Fiction at Obsidian Wings
1 reply
I don't know if you all will remember, but a while back The Powers That Be were kind enough to feature a short story I wrote here on this blog. It was a story about my pet white rats. The link above is to the Kirkus review of the whole book. I wasn't expecting a review that good. I hope the link works, in case you are interested.
Toggle Commented Dec 24, 2014 on My favorite books of 2014: Fiction at Obsidian Wings
1 reply
https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/jill-kearney/dog-thief-kearney/
Toggle Commented Dec 24, 2014 on My favorite books of 2014: Fiction at Obsidian Wings
1 reply
Happy Thanksgiving everyone and thank you for all the informative and witty discussions.
1 reply
IF by Republican base you mean the Koch brothers, then think you are correct that the base will expect their party to obey their orders. On the other hand what does the Republican base voter expect from their party? Do they expect Medicare to become a voucher program? Cuts in vet's benefits? Roll back of Medicaid in their state so they have to help pay their mom's bills? Shift of tax responsibility off wealthy people and onto them? Sift of responsibility for unemployment to state government effectively eliminating the program? Do they expect the Ryan budget to get enacted by both Houses? I don't think Republican base voters are capable of expecting their party do do anything in particular. They vote without having any idea what their party will do. They respond to fearmongering without expecting their politicians to have any practical ideas about the problems they identify as important. The Republican party is a con game. It runs on lying to the base to extract money and votes from them. The Republicans who get elected this fall will need to keep the con going for the next election. So they will do what they do: shriek hysterically about how somebody not Republican is destroying America and it is all the fault of someone not Republican. And why can't they save America from the the not-Republicans? Because OBAMA OBANA OBAMA! So it will be two more years of the howler monkeys screaming "Obama". Meanwhile the Republican politicians will carry out their real agenda by appointing as many pro-oligarchy judges as they can while consolidating into place as many voter suppression laws as they can. I don't know if they will try to pass the Ryan agenda or not. I wish they would since if they did even their incredibly willfully ignorant base would finally see their party for what it is.
Toggle Commented Oct 31, 2014 on The Republicans can't win at Obsidian Wings
1 reply
And it works the other way around: lacking the traits, a person can get through college, but the degree will not make that person a success outside of the ivory tower.
1 reply
While they might have been willing to tolerate the deviance of others, they are far from willing to tolerate no longer being the standard. That's putting it perfectly. Thank you! I think there is a parallel phenomenon concerning race and/or ethnicity. There are people who are very willing to be tolerant of individuals of other races and ethnicities but not willing to tolerate having the US redefined as a nation where those other people share status as the normal, the standard, the image of America.
1 reply
"The issue I'm (trying to) talk about is how "social conservatives" feel that their personal and/or religious convictions are no longer being tolerated, or that mere "toleration" isn't enough." Sorry if I caused a lateral drift. I saw Ferguson as being one of those issues that divide in an interesting way on the authoritarian/ not authoritarian discussion. But on your issue: It seems obvious to me that social conservatives are all about social engineering since their efforts in political life have been to limit other people's choices to conform to their notions--in other words, to influence society. Some even go so far as to assert that they are victims of discrimination if their religious notions aren't imposed on others or treated as sanctioned by some government agency. (I don't see social engineering as a bad thing. I think everyone tries to do it, except hermits)
1 reply
I think there's a problem with white culture that is exposed when white people respond to the shooting by a cop of a black man by looking for indications that the victim corresponds to their stereotype, rather than looking for a report that shows the that shooting was justified as measured by established professional standards (usually defense of the officer's life, or prevention of risk to bystanders).
1 reply
http://qz.com/257042/these-seven-charts-explain-how-ferguson-and-many-other-us-cities-wring-revenue-from-black-people-and-the-poor/ This is relevant, I think.
1 reply
I get the impression that to some people the killing of Mike Brown by a cop is...not about a cop shooting a person. NOt a question of whether or not shooting was justified within the perimeters of professional conduct. Instead it's somehow a metaphor for how white people as symbolized by the police officer have a right to punish black people for misbehaving.
1 reply
I'm really stunned by the suggestion that people should evaluate the job performance of a police officer who shoots someone by deciding that since they don't like Al Sharpton, the killing must be justified. Kind of dismissive of the dead person.
1 reply
I thought Marty was joking. No the cop didn't follow professional procedure. He should know how to respond to minor transgressions like jaywalking without having the incident blow up into shooting at an unarmed person. Following the shooting there are procedures to follow as well. If the officer was injured, he should have gotten the injury documented because an injury would be critical information to support a claim that he had to shoot. He didn't do that. The department should have released the basic facts immediately and should have launched an internal investigation immediately. I thought this was all obvious.
1 reply
I have been in discussion with some of my dog rescue FB "friends" about Ferguson. The common ground I have with these folks is I met them through a united effort to rescue one hundred and twenty dogs from a hoarder/abuser and then continued to work with them through FB to find safe placements for the dogs. It has been an amazing year of protests, letter writing, complaints filed with the AG ( and the AG is going to prosecute!), fundraising, contacting transporting, arranging and now we are down to what is probably the last week of this effort when the last 18 dogs go to a brand new rescue. Huge effort. That's how I know these people. Yet we divide on Ferguson. We divided into the people who are concerned that police act as professionals and people who assume that police actions can be justified by perceived flaws in the dead person, even if those flaws have nothing to do with the incident that resulted in a death. I don't think this divide is necessarily racist, although some of the stuff I have heard is definitely racist. I think that it is a divide between instinctive authoritarians and non-authoritarians. Some people just side with the police officer no matter what. They would see the dead civilian as the Other regardless of skin color because they assume the dead person is dead due to not being like them in some way that justifies getting shot by the police officer, who represents to them normality. The non-authoritarians recognize that there are standards of professional conduct that are supposed to be met and judge the police officer by that. Interestingly, the people who side with the Ferguson cop don't hesitate to condemn police officers who shoot dogs. AS for how to talk to authoritarians, in this instance I did make some head way by point out over and over and over that the issue was not one of the dead person deserving to be shot because he was an asshole (I think he probably was an asshole), but a matter of whether or not the police officer had followed proper procedures before and after the shooting. And of course he didn't. The whole damn department behaved idiotically. They didn't do anything right. But in the end the authoritarians stayed within their comfort zones and quit the discussion. After that there was a spate of posts about how black Americans are racists or should behave better so they don't get shot or the real victims of racism are white people. So I gave up trying to communicate.
1 reply
.There are quite a few hermits on the island where I live. Mostly they live on SS disability. Some combine that with sales of marijuana. They live in old trailers, old Winnebagos, or cabins they built themselves. They use rain barrels for water, car batteries to run their DVD players. They poop in the woods. They burn wood, They repair their leaky roofs with blue plastic tarps. They have old cars that just barely run. So far as I can tell, it's a choice. They are quite different from each other but have the common feature of being eccentrics who don't fit in well, thus being unemployable. They have figured out how to survive without having regular jobs due to being unable to get or keep one. There's a young woman, a Viet Nam vet, a very alcoholic old woman, and a pair of brothers who are probably autistic. I met these folks through dog rescue; they all have, or had, dogs! I think that there are probably lots of folks like them up the dirt roads in the woods.
1 reply
I just feel a need to point out that the other rural folks, the farmers, many timber company employees, ranchers, sheep raisers and so on also live off the government, have done so for much longer than the hippies, in many cases are grotesquely destructive of public owned resources, and, in the end, have cost the taxpayers much more than the hippies ever did.
1 reply
I love camping by myself in wild areas, but I'm not sure nature is what is needed here. I think people need time to be alone, to think and to get past thinking to not thinking. Long distance driving can do it. The practice of art or music. Meditation. I went to Yukon Territory one summer. It took longer for me to drive home fro the airport through a massive traffic jam than it did to fly from Whitehorse to Vancouver. And yes I did feel like I had returned to insanity. Still feel that way. It is insane to destroy the planet with climate change so that people can be stuck for hours in cars. But I think it is possible to get that feeling of sanity at home. My front porch is a place of sanity for me, especially if one of the dogs is sitting with me.,
1 reply
Obama has taken more crap than any President my memory and a person doesn't have to have some kind of sophisticated methodology to figure that out.The vacation crap is just this week's. There's something equally spiteful and stupid every week and its been that way for his entire term in office. More even than Clinton who also was the target of organized rightwing hate mongering. Changing subject here: it's depressing to me how many people respond to police violence against a non-white by trying desperately to confabulate rationalizations for blaming the victim. It's just sad. And I can't think of a motive for that behavior that doesn't reflect poorly on the person doing the confabulating. At best it seems like a clueless knee jerk support for authority.
1 reply
Dorothy Sayers has a couple where the "murder" turns out to not be a murder. I'm pretty omnivorous about murder mysteries. It is a genre' that lends itself to travelogue. For example: Andrea Camiliear's books about Sicily, Cotteril's books set in Laos, Barbara Nagel for Turkey, Kaminsky for Russia, Kwei Quarley for Ghana. In my opinion the best mysteries are the one where, after reading, I remember the book vividly but don't care who did it.
Toggle Commented Aug 18, 2014 on Detecting the writer at Obsidian Wings
1 reply
I've been watching footage. I could see the cops but saw that one of their incendiary deices set a house on fire. It was unprovoked police violence in the footage I saw. The cops were too far away when they started shooting to tell they were even human, let alone see skin color. And the crowd absolutely did nothing to provoke. People were standing with their hands up in the air to show they hand nothing, no weapons, rocks, nothing. The cops were shootin at them from what looked like about a distanc eof two city blocks.
1 reply
There is an increasing pattern of shooting dogs, too. I am very concerned about the militarization of the police. It goes hand in had with the privatization of prisons and the criminalization of poverty. And the shooting of family pets.
1 reply
I got as far as voir dire twice. I was eliminated from a sex abuse trial because I said that kids sometimes lie or can be manipulated, and eliminated from a stalking/intimidation trial because I said that it is inherently threatening to open carry while uninvited on private property of someone who has a restraining order against you. Duh. WEll, I didn't really want to be on either jury. I could have made it through vior dire by being less forthright in my answers because it was obvious what the lawyers were looking for. Which leaves me with a question: if they eliminate everyone who gives honest answers reflecting common sense, who is left? I kind of remember Mark Twain saying some very caustic things about juries.
Toggle Commented Jul 9, 2014 on Attempted Jury Duty Notes at Obsidian Wings
1 reply
No fire works. The community had a sand castle contest, a parade of decorated golf carts, the decorated dog show, an apple pie contest (with me in charge!) lots of games for the kids, and a hot dog picnic. Very sweet
1 reply
My dad's childhood memories of Akron Ohio include taking the trolley to the edge of town, walking out into the countryside, and fishing. Then bring home fish for dinner. A good memory. He got a Jesuit education and joined the army immediately after graduation. He went to the Philippines for the mop up and lost his religion which he hadn't much believed anyway. In the Philippines he saw Americans mistreating prisoners mostly out of inexperience and confusion but sometimes out of sadism.He didn't have much sense of soldiering as being super noble or any of the soldier fetish stuff that is so common now. But he got solid support for his service; went to college on the GI bill. Lots of men from poor backgrounds rocketed into the middle class that way. It's a lot harder to do now, even for a vet. He became a college professor. I had an amazingly rich childhood full of camping trips all over the West, family trips to the library, family dinners and card games, family Christmases... He was hero at the end of his life: he cared for my mother up to the moment of her death even though she had dementia and became very hard to handle. He said that those last years were harder than WW2 had been for him. He was a wonderful daddy..
Toggle Commented Jun 17, 2014 on My Dad and the superhero at Obsidian Wings
1 reply