Wealth Inequality in America (by politizane)

We’ve seen the chart before, but here it is animated and made more apparent.

The myth of America as the land of the free is dying and I hope more and more people  wake up and realize how we’ve become wage slaves to the rich, and how this continues to add to the displacement of the poor and middle class, increases segregation and enforces the prison industrial complex.  

People think that the nation’s problems are too complicated to break down, and we can’t pin the blame on any one person or group.  Really though? REALLY? 

I’m no economist, but I’m pretty sure this isn’t how societies are supposed to run. 

I’ve been thinking a lot about alternative economies and how important it is to build local and strong relationships that are not bound in money. But being at the bottom of this economy, it becomes increasingly more difficult to even survive, let alone build a future. 

We can say UNPLUG, don’t engage, don’t buy new, etc, and these are all good, small things we can do to not participate in capitalism.  But this does nothing to hold other people accountable.  

I have no solution, but I would really love to hear ideas from other people. Maybe we should be bringing our call-out culture to call out those who really need it. This is not a trend piece, this is not a fad. This is your reality.

How maps have distorted our sense of place and politics

1. A world map with Asia in the center.  This is the map I remember growing up with in the Philippines.

2. the Western-centric map we are more familiar with overlaid on top of the Peters map, which is a more accurate projection of the earth’s surface, using different algorithms.  The Peters map is a better representation of land masses as they are, rather than Euro-centric (due to maritime travel and duh, colonization) maps that shrink developing countries and masses such as South America and Africa. 

3. A version of the world map with the southern hemisphere on top.

4. Major Western countries compared in land mass to the continent of Africa

Notice how these maps affect your sense of place.  The appearance of land masses as bigger and on top of the frame influence perceptions of power and importance. For centuries, we have been familiarized with world maps that distort our view of the “real” world. 

More info about the Peters Map here

(shoutout to Stella for bringing this to my attention!)

TONIGHT!!! QUEERGASM, at Northwestern University.
Performances by Rebecca Kling, Kiam Marcelo Junio/Jerry Blossom, Keijaun Thomas, Dirty Grits, Amanda Stefanski, and Ejaz Ali & Oeshik Chowdhury.
I’ll be performing my durational piece, “Sewing Station” during the social hour, and “AmeriKararoke” to open the show.
Don’t miss this if you’re in Chicago or Evanston!

TONIGHT!!! QUEERGASM, at Northwestern University.

Performances by Rebecca Kling, Kiam Marcelo Junio/Jerry Blossom, Keijaun Thomas, Dirty Grits, Amanda Stefanski, and Ejaz Ali & Oeshik Chowdhury.

I’ll be performing my durational piece, “Sewing Station” during the social hour, and “AmeriKararoke” to open the show.

Don’t miss this if you’re in Chicago or Evanston!

Tomorrow night at Roxaboxen, Jerry Blossom will sing classic American songs on #karaoke for Anatomy/Gift/Association presents: Cabaret Cabaret One Year Anniversary. Don’t miss it! #art #performance #chicago #politics #immigration #diaspora #America #colonialism #capitalism #military #USA ##workinprogress #queer #failure

Tomorrow night at Roxaboxen, Jerry Blossom will sing classic American songs on #karaoke for Anatomy/Gift/Association presents: Cabaret Cabaret One Year Anniversary. Don’t miss it! #art #performance #chicago #politics #immigration #diaspora #America #colonialism #capitalism #military #USA ##workinprogress #queer #failure

I need a break from identity art

It feels extremely taxing to constantly create work about the “self” - in image, in politics, in gender, race, and history.  We are all complete beings with our own narratives with varying amounts of intersecting oppressions and privileges. I don’t ever want to be perceived as saying that my story is any more worthy or interesting than anyone else’s.  But with the fact of my practice, as a performative artist, these issues are always brought to the forefront. As a performer, I am always subjecting my self to fetishization, and therefore, also everything my body and history symbolizes. 

I want to take a bit of a break and just make pretty things that people enjoy. And get back into my personal yoga practice, because I think I really need that right now.

I could use a good hug too. 

Why do you have to bring up race?

sinidentidades:

thesearenotdistractions:

Jerry Blossom, for my new series, Model Minority, which explores and complicates intersections of colonialism, privilege, standards of beauty, westernization, and the performativity of race and gender, specifically from a Filipino American immigrant perspective. 

thesearenotdistractions:

Jerry Blossom, for my new series, Model Minority, which explores and complicates intersections of colonialism, privilege, standards of beauty, westernization, and the performativity of race and gender, specifically from a Filipino American immigrant perspective. 

temporarilyeuropean:

A Kid Again
2012
Public Installation, Chicago Suburbs, IL,
Simon M.

A Kid Again started as a means to contest how public space is deemed heterosexual space by default; by adding my queer narrative to the public sphere, I wanted take up those physical spaces where I felt my identity was either a burden or simply erased. Using the past, I developed a sort of queer map of moments in the suburbs where I grew up.

When I distilled the 11 moments to their circumstances, I realized how misinformed and harmful my perceptions of acceptance, free will, and reality were as a child and adolescent. I had internalized homophobia to the point where I viewed my existence as an “other-sexual” as an inconvenience to “normal” people. This project attempts to start, in public, those dialogues that I never could.

So I printed the moments on signs, put them in the locations where they occurred, and expressed those things that I felt I was never supposed to.

After 5 hours (from 5 AM to 10 AM), there were 3 signs left standing. Many were taken within 2 hours of their installation.


Chicago, July 3rd, 2012

American Psychosis | Adbusters Culturejammer Headquarters

PLEASE REBLOG.

I know it’s still Christmas, and we all should be thinking positive, being happy, and stuffing our faces and stomachs to the brim.  But when ready, please read the article linked. And think how we each have made an impact on the world, and how we have been framing our minds around our personal and social environments.  Then, begin to think how we can prepare ourselves for the coming year/s, and what changes we need to make in our own lives. 

This is a crucial point in American, no - World, history.  We can’t continue ignoring the problems as they surmount.  And change always begins with the individual. 

It is the cult of self that is killing the United States. This cult has within it the classic traits of psychopaths: superficial charm, grandiosity and self-importance; a need for constant stimulation; a penchant for lying, deception and manipulation; and the incapacity for remorse or guilt…

…And this is also the ethic promoted by corporations. It is the ethic of unfettered capitalism. It is the misguided belief that personal style and personal advancement, mistaken for individualism, are the same as democratic equality. It is the nationwide celebration of image over substance, of illusion over truth. 

via humangalaxy

Global Peace Index: China more peaceful than US

Link to Gawker.com.  A necessary read, if you live in this world.

I remember being a kid in the Philippines, thinking the USA was a land of good and plenty, of everyone having jobs. Yes, at the age of 6, I was thinking of people’s jobs, as my uncle only held sporadic positions in “jobs-of-the-week” from being a tricycle driver, to a construction man.  Often, I didn’t even know what he did. I also knew that the Philippines was not in great form.  I read about the corruption, all the murders in the cities, I knew about prostitution, and racism.  I thought, “one day, I will live in America, where all the world’s problems are solved.  They have McDo’ everywhere there, and all the buildings have a fountain in the yard.”

The America I see now as an adult is obviously nowhere near this fantastic vision, and it’s unfair for me to expect it to be so.  But having lived in other countries, and seeing how different people value different aspects of life, of treating one another, it’s very easy to criticize the way we do things in the US. 

I am now a US Citizen, I work in the US Navy, and I am also a product of this society.  I AM AMERICAN.  Sometimes I wish I weren’t.  But most of the time, I am glad and feel fortunate for being so. 

Is it unpatriotic to criticize your own country? Of course not, that’s why we have the freedoms of speech, religion, everything that the forefathers promised.  But with good intentions are also people who will take advantage of the resources for selfish endeavors.  We can talk on and on about examples, but the fact remains that some people are good, some are bad, which also translates to governments and leaders that are good, leaders that are bad.

Now why does this matter, when all the world, all countries, also have corrupt leaders and corporations, and religious conflict and hate? Because we lead the developed world.  People are still looking to America as I did when I was a child.  If we can’t hold up to our own standards, how do we expect to create a better world out there? 

We are leading the world, but must we? Well, who are the other alternatives? Do we want to follow the way of China, Korea, Iran, France, Germany? Who is willing to step up and tell the leader to “stand aside, we got this”?  I’m all for a better, more peaceful world, in which people are treated as people and not as commodities. I’m all for peace, and environmental respect, and raising individuals to strive for their highest potential.

Or am I still that child, dreaming of things that aren’t, nor will ever be?

POEM: Ode to the French

Oh, you  French,
with your fancy language
syllables all rolling into one another
like milk in saucers, swirling
You act
so cat-like, nose up high
prancing as you sip your café
in tiny cups I struggle
to hold between two fingers,
my thumbs are cumbersome, I guess.

I call for you,
Oh French!
Sitting languid in your lounge chair
can’t be bothered at this time
for l’ addición, sil-vous-plait!

We shake heads at each other
you deride me for my crude
ignorant tongue, my heavy footsteps
lugging dirt through the carpet
I forget to realize
someone has to clean

And when we eat, oh French,
you, with your bisque au fruit de mer
Beouf bourginion avec pomme frites
you laugh at my hamburger
all sloppy and floppy 
and the ketchup dripping down my shirt
But!
I hear you stole
Créme Bruleé from the Catalans!
And forever, they hate you

But I don’t, oh French
Because, like
pastries and cakes,
with things you know
you really know well.

I hear you gave money to the jobless
and told him to see a play
I hear you cared for the sick
and didn´t ask for an insurance card
I hear you took the homeless kid
and put her through college

I hear

the whisper of your trains
gliding across Europe, like ice skates
my highways don’t sound so nice.

Oh, French
I could really learn to live like you
or at least
dress like you, buttons all
lined up properly
while I’m missing a few

Oh, you French,
Even though you never
back me up when I ask you to
You are still
my starving artist big brother
who’d rather munch on principles
I guess that’s why
your women are so thin

So,
even though we have our differences,
you’re still pretty cool, oh French,
though I guess you already knew that.