“A writer’s notebook is not a diary. Writers react. Writers need a place to record these reactions. That’s what a writer’s notebook is for. It gives you a place to write down what makes you angry or sad or amazed, to write down what you noticed and don’t want to forget. A writer’s notebook gives you a place to live like a writer.” - Ralph Fletcher
Nearly all Americans — 96 percent — have relied on the federal government to assist them. Young adults, who are not yet eligible for many policies, account for most of the remaining 4 percent.
On average, people reported that they had used five social policies at some point in their lives. An individual typically had received two direct social benefits in the form of checks, goods or services paid for by government, like Social Security or unemployment insurance. Most had also benefited from three policies in which government’s role was “submerged,” meaning that it was channeled through the tax code or private organizations, like the home mortgage-interest deduction and the tax-free status of the employer contribution to employees’ health insurance. The design of these policies camouflages the fact that they are social benefits, too, just like the direct benefits that help Americans pay for housing, health care, retirement and college.
SUZANNE METTLER and JOHN SIDES
(Source: The New York Times)
With climate change intensifying weather cataclysms, with the economy still on the verge of collapse and with foreign conflicts showing no sign of slowing down, America faces emergencies of no less than biblical proportions. Literally, biblical — wars,drought, famine and crushing poverty, to name a few. And yet, in the face of this, there’s more often than not total apathy and rampant disdain for the mere idea of political activism.
Except, of course, when it comes to the bizarre nexus of fast food and homophobia.
Then and only then, it seems, do the masses rise up in solidarity to miraculously transform stuffing one’s face with processed junk food into a proud way of opposing equal rights for gay people. Then and only then do people seem willing to drive out of their way and stand on long lines — all to somehow transform gluttonous gorging into a form of anti-gay protest.