Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Words Mean Something

In my  role as a social worker at a medical teaching facility, in a psychiatric department, I've witnessed, written, and read a lot of petitions.  Petitions in Michigan are the initial paperwork needed to hospitalize someone involuntarily.  They're pretty serious stuff.  The petition itself, which anyone can fill out, doesn't take away a person's rights; for that,  two physicians, one of whom must be a psychiatrist, must compete a certificate saying that they agree the patient needs to be hospitalized against his will.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Mandatory Denouncing? The politics of CPS

Bad Quaker (or as Michael Deene likes to refer to him, Ben Quaker) is doing a superb podcast series on protecting children in a free society. Building on the premises that 1) we have no free society, at least in the US and 2) putting them in the "system" which includes the police, the courts, and Child Protective Services does not help kids and it especially doesn't help families.

I have my differences with Ben, which I've already addressed in a comment on his blog.  But CPS has been coming up in all sorts of coversations around me lately, so I figured it's time to do a blog post.

Let me first establish my street cred with regard to CPS, at least CPS in my own state.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Lifestyles of the Rich and Greedy

My mom is visiting from out of town.  We were watching a program about really expensive homes earlier.  well, she was watching it.  I was mostly listening to it and mopping my kitchen floor.

I didn't see what she remarked on when she said, "Shame on them, spending so much money on a room when there are children starving."

Sunday, August 12, 2012

I'm just learning about....democracy #1: Democracy is bad, m'kay?

Because I often find myself thinking these days  about things that I may change my mind about later, I've decided to do a series of "I'm just learning about" blogs.  As I've stated elsewhere, this blog contains much of my mental processes as I consider ideas put forth in libertarianism and anarchocapitalism...the latter of which I had never heard of a little over a year ago.

So this first one is about democracy.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

How to Pass Your Mental Status Exam

I've heard a rumor that Amazon is going to nix its So you 'd like to.... lists.  Therefore, I've decided to preserve mine here.

This is a list I made about 9 years ago (!!).  I updated the "Presidents" book selection so that, if you read it and go to a mental status exam, the examiner won't think that you think it's 2007; but I have yet to put working links in it.  Briefly, I copied the whole darn thing into Word, then made pictures out of it with Paint, and then uploaded them here, so, sorry.

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

New Beginnings, Sad Endings

In December of 1990, I was graduating from UM in a state facing hospital closings, agency closings, and not very many job openings for social worker.  Despite everyone telling me from day one not to expect my internship at Riverview (Ambulatory Psychiatry) to turn into a "real job", I still felt a pang of disappointment when someone didn't say, "Normally, we wouldn't hire an intern at this time, but for YOU, Kelly....."  Oh the grandiosity of youth.

Saturday, June 09, 2012

The means justify the ends?

In history courses in the late 20th century, we often heard the words "the ends justify the means" to color the perpetrators of the that era's worst crimes.  The quote attributed to Stalin, "You have to break some eggs to make an omelet" comes to mind, for example.  A similar mindset was discernible in the actions of 1960s terrorists:  the Weathermen, the Manson Family, etc.  So what if we're murdering people and trying to blow up buildings?  It will all lead to peace and harmony and socialism eventually.

 In my post "activism" days, I have been observing the way they (and me, in the past) held so close to their chests the conviction that even if  the  implementation of their idealistic plans ended up a disaster, no one should suggest that their plans were wrong.  It's a literary opposite, but with consequences that could be just as dire, of "the ends justify the means":  "the means justify the ends!"

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ode to the Birds Who, Until Yesterday, Were Thriving Atop My Exterior Light

(Disclaimer:  this post has nothing to do with anarchocapitalism, libertarianism, or why it's useless to vote this November for president even if you're not an anarchist.  Sometimes, I just has to writes.)

The nest was empty.

I had heard a crow caw, and thought, oh my God, the babies.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Congratulations! You bought gold!!!

Yes, that's right!  Now that the nuclear, post-rapture, post Mayan calender, or global warming apocolypse is here, aren't you glad you invested your life savings in  precious metal?  Not for you the volatile mutual funds market, or insecure stocks; now that there isn't an operating government on the globe, you can hold your head up high knowing you didn't put all your eggs in national currencies or government bonds. No, sir or ma'am!  You planned well!  You win the prepper sweepstakes!  Like your neighbors,  you built a fallout shelter, stocked it with the Alex Jones recommended Vita-Life freeze dried foods which all taste like the brown sauce in frozen Chinese food,  in space-saving little ziplock bags.  You stocked a lot of water.  You learned how to rig garbage bags to a wooden seat to replace your toilet.  You have an emergency radio which only runs for three minutes if you turn  the crank for fifteen minutes...but, oh well, it's not picking up anything yet, anyway (surely all the ham radio operators are waiting till the fallout/flooding from the melted icecaps/Mayan dancing men subside(s) to start creating the new post-world radio network).

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Verifying facts with Beatlology techniques

In a world where the media manipulates the truth, or purposefully lie, it is hard to get the facts straight in any given case.

I've personally got my facts outside of the MSM for about 5 years now. I don't have cable tv, I don't usually listen to the radio news. I do check in on a lot of blogs. I listen to the talk show hosts with whom I agree for the most part. But I still think I can correctly refer to myself as well-informed.

If I'm reading a right leaning blog, say, National Review Online or Mark Steyn, I don't take their word for anything they say, but I don't dismiss them. If I find an article interesting, I start trying to walk through the issues presented, backwards. Which means, for example, if the author asserts that the president made a speech in 2010 vowing to cover all Republicans in shellac, I start googling "Obama speech cover Republicans shellac 2010" and glance at what comes up. If one looks like it may refute the blog's claim I am usually drawn initially to that, and if it does, that's great. Blogger 2 says "That goofy blogger 1! Hey doofus, he did mention shellac, but he said HE was shellacked!". Now I feel I'm getting somewhere. Two sources say "shellac" was definitely in a speech Obama made in 2010. Maybe there's a youtube video of Obama making the speech, just where he says "we really got a shellacking.".But that's the whole clip. And I'm not done because I need to know in what context this is being said.

So what am I looking for? What Obama says he said, maybe in a statement he makes about the speech?

Monday, April 16, 2012

"Buy US or Else" bumper sticker = Nice life there, wouldn't want anything to 'APPEN to it, would we?

Living in the eastern part of Michigan, I see a lot of bumper stickers advising me that I am one of many, or perhaps all, types of bad people unless whenever I buy a car it is "made in the US."  That's been true throughout my life, and in the past I would just ignore it.  My father worked at Fords, and his take on it was that many of the big three ran factories in multiple countries and if you bought a Ford it was likely to say "hecho en Mexico" or "fabrique au Canada" on it.  I found out he was right: I've owned 2 new and 2 slightly used Fords; of them, one was made in Mexico and one in Canada.  Conversely, at that time (late 80s, early 90s) Toyota, Honda and Mitsubishi employed a lot of Americans....which is important to know because of course the "buy American" crowd sincerely believe that if you buy a car made by a foreign company, you are personally responsible  for the high unemployment rate.  But since the Japanese companies employ a lot of Americans, if you buy a Honda Civic or whatever, you will help them maintain their jobs.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Life is the Parallels Episode on TNG

"Parallels" is my favorite Start Trek, The Next Generation episode.  The first time I saw it, I had just come home from a meeting of a mental health board in a county in Michigan.  During the meeting the topic turned to how to berate me, as the representative of a private company contracting with this entity, because my agency had failed to do exactly what they told us NOT to do the month before.

The First Amendment Wasn't Passed to Protect Polite Speech

That's all.


Thursday, March 22, 2012

"Capitalism is a philosophy,founded upon individual rights...in which all property is privately owned."

"It's not economics.  It's not profit.  It's not business.   Those are all aspects of capitalism,..." says Rick Koerber,

but the main aspect of capitalism is individual rights and private property.

Rick Koerber hosted Free Capitalist Radio, which has some great podcasts about what capitalism is and isn't.  Unfortunately it looks like the last one was in January 2010.  Fortunately, it's one of the best if you're new to the whole capitalist thing or if you thought you knew everything about capitalism from school.

Free Capitalist Radio | News and Politics Audio Podcast | Podcast-directory.co.uk - your podcast directory with English video and audio podcasts

Sunday, March 18, 2012

What Government has joined........

Whenever I hear my conservative friends talk about "traditional marriage", and the need for a "traditional marriage amendment",  I react in one of several different ways:  Looking over my glasses and saying "Really?", running screaming from the room, putting my fingers in both ears, and grabbing shoulders, shaking them, saying: "Do you hear what you're saying?????  You're saying, 'Congress, stay out of my business!'  'Mr. President, stay out of my gun case!', 'Government, stay out of my pocket!' 'Government, please regulate marriage!' It makes you sound very silly."

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Emergency Meeting of the Steering Committee of the Evil, Woman Hating,Child Beating, Racist Conservatives

(We are in a large conference room with one of those long tables that look like real wood.  There are about eight men, one of whom (LEAD MAN) is standing at the back of the room in front of a screen, fourteen of whom are mumbling to each other about stocks.  The director can have more men around the table, but be sure to let people know there are only 8 speaking roles. Truth in advertising and all that.)

LEAD MAN: I'm sure you'd all like to know why I called you here to this emergency meeting.  I'm here to tell you, boys, that we are dying in the media.

(One man shoots his hand up in the air)

GUY #1:  "Is it because Rush Limbaugh called someone a slut?"
(concerned murmurs all around)

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Best. Nigerian. Spam. Ever. (and my reply)

From my facebook page, in case Notes go away (you never know):
 by Kelly L. Norman on Wednesday, June 2, 2010 at 3:25pm ·

1) The spam (remarks italicized & in brackets were added by me; not in original e-mail)

----- Original Message -----
From: mr roger
To: undisclosed recipients
Sent: Wednesday, June 02, 2010 2:15 AM
Subject: Re: Payment Notification:

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Why USians think we know languages when we don't

Earlier this year I posted about an unpleasant interaction I had with a Frenchman who lives in California. He scoffed at me for posting on my facebook page that I "know" French. I explained that the template for listing languages in your profile says "knows".  So don't blame me, blame Mark Zuckerburg.  It is probably more on target to say I study French.  What followed was his stubborn insistence that I was somehow being dishonest and a poseur of sorts -- pardon, poseuse. I was really exasperated by this.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Goretex and Top Hats

I am dying of lack of computer access.  Not only does my computer not work yet, but the one at my place of business has Explorer -100 or something like that, so all I can get from blogger is a message that "I" should upgrade "my" browser.  Which of course I do not have credentials to do.  And what am I doing blogging at work anyway?  Good question. 

I have striven to put some things on (gasp) paper, and my love affair with Moleskine journals has indeed grown...hopefully those scraps will end up here sometime in something legible.

Meantime I'm taking a break at my public library to let you know that something at work has really been p__ing me off.