This is Issue 74.3 of Digestable, your thrice-weekly mouthful of things happening in the world.
Today’s news, fermented:
Ok, October. Here we are.
Things I’m thinking about today are climate policy deadlock because the fossil fuel industry has purchased the government (the usual), and the fact that neoliberalism will speed our demise.
I have a liberal arts degree, which is one of those degrees everyone likes to joke about being completely useless. Say what you will—but one of the most unquestionably solid pieces of knowledge I got from this degree is a thorough understanding of ~neoliberalism~. So I’ll leave you with that to chew on this weekend.
First, the word. Neo is new, liberalism, is, well, define that how you will. For our purposes, let’s call it Not Overt Conservatism.
Onto what it means. There are two distinct phases of advancing a neoliberal agenda.
Roll back: stripping down services, policies, and structures that are publicly funded and for the public, as well as controlled (to some degree) by the public. Think: water systems, banks, schools, roads.
Roll out: replace those services with more or less the same services, but provided by private corporations. These services are rarely the same—water quality from privately controlled water systems goes down, for example. Schools (often called charter schools!) run by private entities are often host to horrific disciplinary practice, and low standards for teacher qualifications. Across sectors, private control of public resources means less oversight by the people who use those services. Much of the time, these services are controlled by corporations, but also partially funded with tax dollars.
So back to the liberalism part. I’m sure you’ve heard about public-private partnerships, which are often touted by Democrats (and everyone) as ways to invest in stuff we need without spending too much public money on it.
But—it’s no mistake that there’s so little money in the public coffers and so much in private ones. Rather, the whole system of neoliberalizing an economy (divesting from public resources to allow private companies to take control and profits) yields decision-makers hamstrung to tax corporations and the wealthy (because we “need” their money), which is how money would get back into public hands.
Another term I learned at liberal arts college is negative feedback loop. I’m not going to explain that one, because I already did.
A few days ago, I saw this article, which I haven’t been able to stop thinking about, especially because I’m reading this book. The gist of the article is that economists, the same assholes who brought us neoliberalism, are now realizing that a low-carbon economy is “cheaper” than the costs of climate change. When the market makes the rules (corporations and the wealthy calling the shots is the market), it’s a really big deal that the market takes notice of costs outside of stock profiles.
Well, this has been a whole rant. I hope, at least, that the next time you’re at an (outdoor) dinner party and some Wall Street prick nobody invited talks about the wonders of neoliberalism, you tear them down with confidence.
Happy weekend, friends.
Buenos Dias from this chilli Medellin morning. I greet you from a place of deep tranquility and light.
In thinking about this morning’s reading, the word I kept on coming back to was gratitude. Gratitude that despite living in some of the most chaotic times (literally living through a global pandemic), I wake up every morning and I breathe; that despite all of the upsetting and traumatic things that happen inevitably as a human on this earth, I live. I have recently been coming to terms with the processing and collective grieving we are going through and will go through, specifically because of the past year and a half. Every conversation I’ve had with friends recently has centered around feeling exhausted, drained, tired, and just slightly if not fully defeated. And that is where I drew my inspiration for today’s tarot reading. In order to be able to fill other’s cups (thinking of all the folks taking care of family members, children, being the emotional support for family and friends), we must first fill our own — you know that whole put your oxygen mask on first on the plane analogy.
Now what I am not saying is to not acknowledge the sadness and grief, these feelings absolutely have a place in our lives. And I encourage you to sit with them, feel them, and not run away from them. We must learn to co-exist with all of our emotions, because burying them will only mean they will come back up stronger. There is place for sadness and grief, and maybe we’ll focus on that during a future reading.
Today though, I want to remind you that you are alive, you are breathing, you are feeling, and how bad ass is that in a world where you could quite literally say “eff it, it’s all screwed up anyways”. It is screwed up living in this world, but one of the most radical things you can do in this world is believe in it; believe in your friends that send you memes during the worst times because sometimes all we need to do in the moment laugh. Believe in the kind stranger that paid for your train fair when you realized you didn’t have any money on your metro card…just believe goodness exists and give gratitude to that.
Ok, now let’s get to this reading. For my tarot practitioners, I found this great tarot spread for gratitude, feel free to practice and play around with it.
For our reading we will be borrowing the question from this spread, “What blessing in disguise am I not aware of.” We are choosing this one because I want you to become aware of that which you might not see in this moment.
…alright and our card today is…two of cups!
“There’s a super amazing, spectacular person in your life, or there’s about to be. You love being in their company so much, each time you’re together feels like a party and your heart is just bursting full of love for them. Get drunk on love, enjoy them beside you and let them fill your cup.”
I meannnnnn…do I even need to interpret this one? Give gratitude for this special person, they could be a friend, family member, pet, hell you might even be in the process of self discovery and that person could be you. Either way, fill YOUR cup, and dance with gratitude, get drunk on looooove.
Till next time!
Brought to you by the superb Latifah Azlan.
Today on ~*Hot Goss*~, a modern [American] play in three parts.
Part I: That time in 2019 when Jason Isbell tweeted the following:
Part II: That time, also in 2019 but a day later, when Rural Person "Willie McNabb" responded to the above tweet with:
Part III: Now, in the year 2021, when the prophecy of the feral hogs came true to Shakira, of all people:
In case you were wondering, Shakira did manage to fight off these wild boars without the need for an assault rifle and managed to get some of her belongings back. She also posted a video of the offending hogs on her Instagram so if you're ever in the area in Spain, be sure to keep an eye out for these relentless beasts!