November 30th, 2011

batou: confused

This post is not (just) about today's public sector workers' strike.

There are a lot of things that I find repugnant about the statements jeering at the public sector workers' strike happening in Britain today, but the one I find most baffling is the argument that "because private sector workers have terrible pensions, so should public sector workers". Do people really want their definition of equality to be "making things equally bad for everyone"? Don't we all want decent pensions? Shouldn't the aim be to let all people retire in a reasonable state of health and comfort, and not die in poverty?

Why bother to exist if the only thing we do with our existences is to sustain the crap conditions we were born into? Is there anyone left who wants a better future for all of humanity, rather than to just goggle at one another while we cling hopelessly with our fingertips to the tiny pittance we've been allotted? How did we all get so defeatist and so short-sighted in our aspirations? Why does it feel like it's now not only uncool to aspire to change the world, it's unacceptable?

I bet the wealthy and powerful just love watching us peons squabble over what little we've got. It certainly seems to keep us from doing anything to genuinely threaten their grip on our fortunes.
me: ooh!

Seasonal Giving 2011

Instead of sending Non-Sectarian Festival Holiday Cards at random this year, I’m going to follow the fine example of innerbrat.

I will donate (slightly more than) the amount I’d otherwise spend on a card and postage to the following three charities on your behalf - £1.50 per person. If you select more than one charity, I’ll divide the donation among them. Hence, if you select all three, I’ll donate 50 pence to each on your behalf. I’m not planning to name anyone other than myself when I make the donations. The poll results are viewable only to me.

If you are able to make a small reciprocal donation on my behalf as well, that would be wonderful, but it is not required. Please select from the following three charities:

  1. Medecins sans Frontiers (Doctors Without Borders) is an international aid organisation that provides emergency aid to people affected by natural and less-natural disasters and war. They are independent, a-partisan and a-religious and use this independence to provide medical aid to everyone who needs it. (Description taken from innerbrat.)

  2. IntoUniversity is a London organisation that "supports young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to attain either a university place or another chosen aspiration." Those who have been reading my journal over the past few weeks will know I have personal ties with this charity.

  3. The Abortion Support Network is a volunteer-run a-partisan charity that "provides financial assistance, accommodation in volunteer homes, and confidential, non-judgmental information to women in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland who are travelling to England to access a safe and legal abortion." If you want to know why I’ve chosen this charity, I invite you to read why I’m pro-choice and/or the story of my abortion experience. (Trigger warnings on the latter for blood and emotional and physical pain.)

For ease of calculation (and because of the recent egregious privacy breach), I’m going to break from my usual tradition of mirroring posts exactly on LiveJournal. If you’re on LJ and wish to vote in the poll, please log into Dreamwidth with OpenID. If this is too confusing, leave an anonymous comment (automatically screened) with your selection(s) and an indication of your identity. I’m only asking for identification because even if the only people to respond are my entire Circle/flist, I’m going to be donating quite a wodge of cash!

Donations will be tallied and paid on the winter solstice (December 22nd).