Urgent request: office supplies needed (Patreon link within)

Hi everyone.  This is coming at a bad time as my business is slow and I am extremely short on funds, but I desperately need a new printer.  I had to replace an HP printer I had for several years when the print head died for a second time.  I got a new printer last fall and it’s been a horrible ink hog that I have spent hundreds of dollars on ink to keep going.  After maybe 2 weeks of quality printing, to even get it to print at all takes 30 minutes of cleaning and aligning print heads every single time, and even then I only get a couple more weeks worth out of it before it says it needs more ink.  I have to print about 12 pages a week of consistently high quality.  This printer is not up to the task.  I also need a few different office supplies.

If anyone has an unused gift card to Walmart, Office Depot, Best Buy, Ebay or Amazon, or is able and willing to send an extra donation this month, $300 would go a long way to getting me a decent printer, some extra ink cartridges and office supplies.  For $100 I could get some more ink and just keep using this printer for another couple of months. $30 would get me some office supplies.

For anyone who wants to, donations can be made on my Patreon page.  My email address is posted there in a private post for anyone who wants to send gift cards or correspondence.

I have received $100 already.  Thank you for reading and thanks for your support, we really appreciate it.

The Welfare Gnome! It’s Like a Sock Gnome Except This One Can Actually Kill You. Ft. Joker (Again)

According to the internet, a “sock gnome” is a mythical creature that pilfers socks.  Presumably it lives in or around the dryer where you put an even number of socks in and get an odd number out.  Sometimes it gets tricksy and spits out an even number but the pairs don’t match (meaning it’s pilfered one from more than one pair) but the usual evidence that you’ve had a sock pilfered by a gnome is that there is one left over that doesn’t have a mate and the missing sock never reappears ever.  This is a real thing (if not a real gnome) and everyone knows what this means.

Well, there appears to be a similar creature that lives at Social Services and pilfers sick and poor people’s applications for welfare benefits.  Or something, idk.  I assume these creatures are related but maybe not since this gnome doesn’t play games: its goal seems to be to drive you insane before it literally kills you.  I wrote here before about an application for benefits that went missing, along with a half a dozen other boondoggles that have wasted my spoons and left me scrambling to repeat some administrative process I was barely able to complete survive the first time.

Because while a sick person’s literal inability to jump through bureaucratic hoops is actually the best evidence that someone is extremely ill, someone has decided that only those who are well enough to sing for their supper (or pursue benefits) deserve to eat, as it were.  The first application that went missing was for food stamps, while today I found out that my application to get on a 4 month waitlist to see a doctor went missing 2 months ago and has not been since heard from: although my disability advocate hand-delivered it, the application was never received.

Continue reading “The Welfare Gnome! It’s Like a Sock Gnome Except This One Can Actually Kill You. Ft. Joker (Again)”

The Fraud of Western Psychiatry: A Mental Health Mashup Just in Time for the Holidays. You’re Welcome.

The nuclear family is the site of oppression, coercion and abuse for so many people, especially female people, worldwide, and yet “the family” is rarely discussed in political (or radical) terms.  Last year around this time, I wrote about various familial abuses traditionally suffered by girls and women and suggested that oppression, coercion and abuse is the reason “the holidays” are such a stressful time for people, especially women.  In my observation, the refusal of most people to address the horrors of what really happens in families just leads to confusion and avoidance — and massive cognitive dissonance — where people express dread, anxiety and other negative emotions around family-focused holidays, but only manage in reducing this common experience to a joke/meme and avoiding unpleasant sensations by drinking (or eating, or shopping, or fucking, or cleaning, or decorating, or otherwise medicating) heavily until it’s over. 

That message was generally not taken well, where I gently (and tangentially, it was literally a parenthetical) suggested that a guaranteed way to stop familial oppression, coercion and abuse (of mostly females) was to stop creating so-called nuclear families at all.  Antinatalism, basically.  I know, right?  Antinatalism wasn’t even the dominant theme of that post but I’m such a misogynistic, baby-hating bitch for letting my mind lady-brain wander there, even parenthetically, how dare I (use the internet to talk about the female experience and female oppression).  How very damn dare I.

Sticking with the holiday theme of oppression, coercion and abuse — because it’s fucking relevant — those things are known to cause so-called psychiatric symptoms in people, particularly women as they are its primary targets under a more or less global patriarchy.  In large numbers, girls and women (female human beings) experience anxiety, depression, disassociation and other uncomfortable and debilitating states as a result of being oppressed, coerced and abused, and a lot of women are prescribed and take psychiatric drugs so that these uncomfortable states go away, or have less of an impact on our lives.  And by “lives” I of course mean our ability to show up and be ab/used by our capitalistic, patriarchal overlords including (almost always male) partners, employers and other authority figures.  Mother’s Little Helper and all that.

If these medications actually worked — that is, if they did what they say on the tin and relieved us of our agony — they still wouldn’t be beyond reproach.  There are compelling political and indeed medical arguments against treating people with dangerous Big Pharma medications to ease uncomfortable states of being.  For example, the debilitating and often permanent physical and mental “side effects” of prescription medications, otherwise known as iatrogenic illness and injury that are often just as bad or even worse than the original disease.  As usual, Big Medicine offers suffering people the chance to trade one illness for another, and another, and another, and to pay through the nose for the privilege.

Many times it’s not even a proper trade because the drugs are unable to cure the original disease and the new, treatment-induced injuries and illnesses are just added on.  (This is the case with Crohn’s disease for example which is known to be an incurable disease.)  Either way, the misery is compounded.  Well, it appears to be an open secret within the psychiatric community that psychiatric medications don’t do what they say on the tin.  Women are taking anti-anxiety, anti-depressant, anti-psychotic and other psychotropic medications to treat the effects of political and interpersonal oppression — and are being asked to concurrently swallow the cultural fiction that their discomfort is not political and originates in their own biochemistry — and the medications don’t even work, because they can’t work, because there is nothing chemical to treat, get it?

As discussed below, it appears as if the theory that a chemical imbalance in the brain causes psychiatric symptoms has been thoroughly debunked, yet application of this flawed theory continues: people continue to be medicated for “mental” conditions that are not biochemical and therefore are not amenable to chemical therapies.  These medications also cause frightening and severe negative outcomes long-term and psychiatrists know all of that but they keep prescribing them anyway.

Here are some clips that illustrate what seems to be the situation in which we find ourselves.  Namely, that oppression, coercion and abuse are unavoidable in this system; families are the original and main exposure to those things for most women globally and familial exposure in particular cannot be avoided; oppression, coercion and abuse cause the symptoms we know as mental illness; and every medication in Big Medicine’s arsenal is known to not work to treat it and to even make patients’ physical and mental conditions worse over time.  More videos and discussion below the fold.

Continue reading “The Fraud of Western Psychiatry: A Mental Health Mashup Just in Time for the Holidays. You’re Welcome.”

A Note to the Turmeric and Yoga Crowd. tl;dr. You Aren’t That Sick.

Let me preface this note by saying that I was able to somewhat control my Crohn’s symptoms for 30 fucking years before I got sick.  And when I say “sick” I mean sick-sick.  The kind that is undeniably disabling, mostly doesn’t respond to treatment and never goes away.

Because I have explored and/or experienced these things firsthand, I know all about prescription and over the counter medication including oral, topical and other traditional medications, as well as Chinese medicine; homeopathy; reflexology; chiropractic; Ayurveda; herbal remedies and tonics; restrictive diets and enteral feeds; probiotics and fermented foods; vitamins, minerals and other supplements; trendy exercise programs and basic ones too; every form of detox, cleanse, fast and purge imaginable (and then some); acupuncture/acupressure/cupping/spooning; aromatherapy; crystal and precious metals therapies; therapeutic massage; meditation and relaxation practices; binaural beats and sound therapy; infrared therapy; Reiki and other energy work; atheist-prayer; talk therapy and otherwise working out your issues; knock-you-down-to-build-you-back-up emotional bootcamps; cutting “toxic people” and things out of your life; letting go and letting God; and thinking about something else for awhile.  Did I miss anything?  Jesus.

I’ve done it all and I’ve been doing it all for a very long time.  This is not my first day, or year, or decade with alternative therapies: I was avoiding nightshades while some of you were still eating French fries with your Happy Meals.  Think about that shit a minute.  I’ve been doing every alternative therapy imaginable since before many of you were even born.  And certainly before any of this shit became cool, or easily accessible, or at all normalized and/or mainstream. 

Potatoes (and therefore French fries) are a nightshade BTW, for anyone who doesn’t know.  And nightshades are known to be inflammatory.  I recently had an old family friend clue me into the harm nightshades can cause.  I recall trying to clue people into that in 1992 when I first learned about it but whatever right?  He figured it out 30 years later, after being in pain for decades and after having both knees replaced.  Good job dude.  Seriously, well fucking done.  These are the people, and the kinds of people, who are giving me advice.  It is, in a word, maddening.

I’ve also been keeping up with the research.  I research Crohn’s and other medical conditions weekly if not daily because I am interested in it and interested in the social commentary around it.  Where there is none, or nothing interesting, I create social commentary about it on this blog.  I know about fecal transplants and have written about it here, I know about so-called “Functional Medicine” and have written about that here, I know about stem-cell therapy (shudder) and Ketamine therapy.  I know that there is a potential gene therapy in the pipeline which I will probably never get to try.  Because these things cost money and are gatekept and are otherwise inaccessible and/or unsustainable over time.  We have been over this.  Even if these things work, there are reasons besides not knowing about it that prevent people from accessing them long term or at all.  Have you heard of?  Have you tried?  Yes.  Probably.  Seriously, stop wasting my fucking time.*

Continue reading “A Note to the Turmeric and Yoga Crowd. tl;dr. You Aren’t That Sick.”

Of All The Things I’ve Lost, I Miss My Mind The Most. Ft. Joker

I recently wrote on my Patreon about Dave, my new disability advocate who seemed like he was going to be helpful for once.  Where my previous advocate was good at bleating on endlessly about my alleged “rights” as a disabled person, wasting my time and energy listening to her while not actually helping me gain access to resources, my new advocate put on a seriously impressive show.  Because I don’t have a car and am generally too sick to walk or ride my bike more than a couple of blocks, and likely too sick to drive even if I had a car, he arranged to pick me up for our appointments and afterwards took me back home.

Because I no longer possess executive function and cannot consistently or reliably complete tasks that require it (read: the stuff corporate executives pay other people to do for them, particularly female people, namely secretaries, wives and others) this man filled out applications for me, doing some of them online, addressed and mailed the ones going out of town and hand-delivered the rest.  This was almost unbelievably (!) helpful and I felt cautiously optimistic that things might finally be on the right track: a track towards getting me the disability and need-based benefits I’m entitled to as a seriously ill person with a disabling incurable, progressive disease.

To wit, Social Security benefits, into which I have paid since I started working when I was 15 and which they will just give to me freely if I live long enough but for which I have to beg in order to receive now, and housing, food and cash assistance that will help me stay in my little apartment, run my small business and somewhat control my environment and my access to climate control/lights/running water/refrigeration/toilet etc. and privacy and relative peace in which to care for my 2 adopted shelter cats and manage the daily pain and indignities of my disabling autoimmune disease.

The online application for SSD was returned to me in hardcopy to review, sign and return.  lol.  Along with a notice that if I want to also apply for SSI, the “other” form of disability-based benefits that’s basically exactly the same as SSD and as far as I know requires mostly the same information sent to the same place, I had to do a separate application for that.  lol.  The application for food and cash assistance was “never received” by social services, according to social services, even though Dave hand-delivered it and watched them time/date stamp it himself.  lol.

Continue reading “Of All The Things I’ve Lost, I Miss My Mind The Most. Ft. Joker”

A “Rational Suicide” Note. Ft. Anne Örtegren.

This is a “suicide” note left by a ME/CFS sufferer who sought and found relief from her suffering via legal, medically assisted suicide.  She says this manifesto took her months to write, which I do not doubt a bit: it is long, detailed and polished and was written when she was feeling terrible.  She wrote it with the intent to describe her almost indescribable pain and experience, and to convince others to take action on behalf of ME/CFS sufferers, both of which are lofty communication goals when anyone is seriously ill.

Describing and convincing have been my most impossible endeavors since I’ve been seriously ill myself and I think I have mostly failed, judging by others’ reactions to everything I’ve managed to gather the physical and emotional grit to attempt to communicate: that I am seriously, hopelessly ill with an incurable, progressive disease, that there is no bottom to how bad this can get, and it matters not what anyone thinks about it.  Some things are just true regardless of whether anyone believes it.

In this note, ME/CFS patient Anne Örtegren describes symptoms and dilemmas I have experienced myself and she foresees logical outcomes to her predicament, something sick people and especially sick women are never allowed to do because catastrophization.  For example, she knows that her heightened sensitivity to light and sound will make treatment or recovery in a hospital setting impossible where the standard of care in that environment requires constant activity and interruptions, and provides no privacy and no escape from the harsh industrial lighting, interrogations by (allegedly) well meaning staff and the general hustle and bustle of capitalistic money making on the backs and bodies of sick and dying people.

That is but one example of a sick person making informed prognostications regarding likely outcomes of the things other people want to do to us, and as someone who shares these sensitivities to light and sound (and therefore an aversion to hospital settings) as but one example of our shared experience of being seriously ill, I appreciated her spelling it out.  I also feel extremely sad that she had to, and furious that no one who allegedly cared about her wellbeing including medical professionals who should be fucking sensitive to the actual needs of real patients could make the leap themselves.  There are many such examples in this letter.

See for yourselves, and understand that as illuminating and raw as this letter is, it’s also been edited by the publisher and a so-called suicide prevention expert because the bottom line everywhere appears to be that there is no such thing as rational suicide or euthanasia because well people and people who make money off of the long-term sick and dying say so.  And because living in this capitalistic, patriarchal nightmare is so hideous for so many people that “suicide contagion” exists, where just knowing that someone, somewhere had whatever it took to end themselves is likely to cause untold numbers of happy, healthy consumers with bright futures to do the same damn thing.  Yeah that’s it, let’s keep telling ourselves that.

The letter as published is reprinted below.  The unedited letter supposedly exists online somewhere if anyone cares to look and has the energy to figure out how and where the edited version differs from the original.  Comments are open below.

Continue reading “A “Rational Suicide” Note. Ft. Anne Örtegren.”

WWNRD? Or, What Would Nurse Ratched Do? Ft. Nurse Ratched

nurse3
Nurse Ratched was a sadistic, evil bitch at the time and would be that and a dangerously out of touch political dinosaur now.  Please do not do what she would do.  If anything, ask yourself WWNRD and then do the opposite.

Speaking with my mother recently made me sympathize with young smartasses and activists who are just waiting for the elder generation — the out of touch Baby Boomers and the Baby Boomers’ parents and kids by this point — to give up the ghost and die.  A “dinosaur” or political dinosaur is someone whose philosophy and worldview are obsolete and rooted in problematic values and circumstances of the distant past.  For example, as a young activist in my teens and 20s I remember thinking and saying that the world would be a better place once those who grew up with unregulated environmental pollution and legal institutionalized racism, sexism etc. died off because their environmental unconcern, racism and sexism were so entrenched that they either didn’t realize, agree or care that what they were doing and being was wrong.

Welp.  After being sick my entire fucking life with an undiagnosed autoimmune disease, and going on 8 years with a diagnosed one, I am having these same thoughts now about the older generation of Western medical practitioners and others who were born, grew up and/or progenated in a low-population, relatively unpolluted pre-nuclear world where lifelong serious, untreatable, incurable and progressive disease existed only in very small numbers and therefore where older people seem to believe and act as if chronic illness did not and does not exist at all.

To be clear, chronic illness obviously did exist in our recent and distant past, for example, natural uranium deposits are known to cause acute and chronic radiation sickness to those who spend time around it.  And humans have likely always been struck down with genetic and congenital maladies that might not have outright killed them.  But old/er people seem to have lived their entire lives without chronic illness, including autoimmune and immune-mediated disease, front and center in their consciousness or as a part of their lived experience and this does make sense: before, say, the 1940s and 50s the worst industrial (man-made ionizing nuclear) pollutants had yet to be widely dispersed and contemporary Western medicine did not, because it could not, routinely pluck seriously ill and/or nonviable neonates, infants and others from the brink of merciful, natural deaths.  Today, seriously ill children and others are rather forced to live for years, decades and lifetimes with serious illnesses that do not outright kill them, because Western medicine will not allow it, but which Western medicine has yet to figure out how to treat, relieve, or cure.

Having researched chronic illness, primarily autoimmune and immune-mediated disease for going on 8 years now, it seems to me that, in stark contrast to the life experience and worldview of older people, young people today generally are very aware that incurable and progressive chronic illness exists.  Over and over I see that young people today, at least young Western people, well understand and accept the reality of chronic illness much more freely than older people, and the implications of that are extremely dark.  From what I can discern, this difference in worldview likely exists because young people are increasingly becoming seriously chronically ill themselves.  Young people understand and accept the material reality of chronic illness because experiencing it personally as individuals and in their peer group they have no choice but to accept it.

And over and over I see that older people are generally ignorant about issues of chronic illness and that they have not experienced it either individually or in their peer group.  Frighteningly, instead of recognizing their blessed ignorance and trying to remedy it, older people think that their personal opinion based on outdated and second- and third-hand pseudo-knowledge about chronic illness matters or affects the outcome.  It doesn’t, but unfortunately many medical professionals, healthcare policymakers, paid and unpaid caretakers and the like embrace an outdated worldview that no longer applies in our post-nuclear, Western world, and thus do not or cannot fully believe the self-reports of, or even contemporary peer-reviewed medical research addressing, the experiences and needs of seriously chronically ill.

Continue reading “WWNRD? Or, What Would Nurse Ratched Do? Ft. Nurse Ratched”