Archive for the ‘Politics’ Tag

Vote … Canada

An Elections Canada ballot box is shown on federal election day in Montreal, Monday, May 2, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

The ladies have ceded the blog to me for today, because their goals are much the same as mine when it comes to politics. Specifically, we want you to vote.

This time, though, I’m talking, and so I’m talking to Canadians. Today is our scheduled general election day, after 40 bruising days of campaigning by the six parties, and it’s now up to us to choose. That’s what I’m asking you to do. Polls are already closed in the Atlantic provinces and parts of my province of Québec, and more will be closing in some 20 minutes. It’s your job, if your poll is still open, to get in there and make your X on your ballot.

Why? Because, believe it or not, the votes matter. This is where we finally get a real say in how we want our country to work, how we can hold these men and women accountable for the actions they’ve taken. Your vote matters, especially in an election as close as this one is. So get out there!

Posted October 21, 2019 by Conan Bankersbox in Real Life

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How long shall I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart …?

Psalm 13:2, King James Version


An open letter to the lawmakers of the United States of America:

You are accused, and stand convicted in our eyes, of moral cowardice and of shirking your responsibility to govern this country for the good of its citizens.

We the people you are supposed to work for … something you seem to have forgotten … stand aghast before you on the day following not just one, but two more mass shootings.

We see the blood beginning to paint our streets with greater frequency, but we see nothing of substance done to stem or reverse the flow. All we detect are the pious, if not sanctimonious, expressions of sympathy to the families of the victims, and the accusations of each political side against the other before microphones and cameras. You are again revealed as hollow, shallow and venal, spouting words of intent, and yet bowing before the money of the National Rifle Association and its antiquated idea of “gun owners’ rights.”

None of your empty posturing and “profound sympathy” and calls for prayers and support will drown out the anguished wails of the parents and families of the dead and wounded. Neither will it silence the angry cries of the ghosts whose once-living blood now soaks our soil … blood that itself accuses you of immobility on solving the problem, and of corruption of moral intent. You have lost even the remotest knowledge of what constitutes good government … if, indeed, such has ever been your intent.

In a country where you so often invoke faith and “family values” to bolster your images, we more and more hear instead the words of Thénardier from the sewers of the musical Les Misérables:


It’s a world where the dogs eat the dogs
Where they kill for the bones in the street
And God in his heaven
He don’t interfere
Because he’s dead as the stiffs at me feet
I raise my eyes to see the heavens
And only the moon looks down
The harvest moon shines down!


The only thing that keeps us from surrendering to that philosophy is our faith in a God or deity that does care for us … seemingly more than the people we constantly and mistakenly elect to hold temporal power.

We tell you now, you shall listen to the cries of both us and our children — in our lives, in our beds, in the graves you have helped dig with your own bloody hands — and you shall find a way to right the vast wrong you have done in the name of power and greed. If you don’t, then the future you create, whether it lies far away or just around the corner, will fall at your feet; and it may be a future all of us wish to avoid.

The blame will be another matter. That must be shared by us all ….

Posted August 4, 2019 by Jem Sternhall in News

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Together We are Strong


Another thing that frustrated me about this past week of no computer was that I had work locked up in it, in a barely-begun stage.  Thankfully, I was able to get going on it during the weekend here.  That was some badly needed free time, to figure out how to mask out the background on the basic pictures (ChromaKey green wouldn’t work in every case) and assemble the final photo.  Even after getting everyone in position, it didn’t come together until I decided to replace the background with posters.  I’m not too displeased with the final result, though.  Donald Trump likes pretty women; well, here’s seven of them, about as sexy as he could desire, and each one is strongly tempted to stick a dagger in his ribs and kick him in the teeth.

All seven are me.  These are all of the primary characters I write my stories for:  Ariel, Jo, Sharra, Latifah, Keiko, Maren and Dannta.  All seven are women, and assuredly multiethnic (Ariel is a cyborg from the 48th century, and Dannta is an alien residing in our world and time)1.  All seven are professionals:  entertainer, physician, foundation chairwoman, teacher, businesswoman, lawyer and executive director.  And, to be brutally frank, all seven are pissed at the direction current affairs in the United States are taking.  This photo shows their obvious solidarity with the goals of the Women’s March; but they also protest against the assaults on immigrants and minorities and a more science-based environmental policy; against the attempted forcing of governmental affairs toward a more big-business-friendly, laissez-faire model; against the coming assaults on education, arts and the humanities — in short, against about anything the current administration and its ultra-conservative supporters in Congress plan to do over the next two to four years.

(Yes, this blog is getting political, possibly edging toward strident.  But, babes, men and women, it’s not as strident as it could get.  You oughta see my husband’s Facebook shares; he’s so much looser than I am, this photo is pale by comparison.  He feels betrayed by his party; he’s a fiscal conservative, but liberal on social issues, and the rise of the Tea Party and Trumpites has left him disgusted beyond bounds.  This will probably be the last thing in the blog for some time, unless I get too aggravated again — entirely possible, considering the actions of the current administration — but there will almost surely be more until we can be shut of this man and all his works.)


Full-size version available on my Flickr stream

UPDATED: See also Strawberry Singh’s article.


1 I wish I’d had a Hispanic and an Arab or Muslim character now, but I’ve never developed those before.  My next story will need to address that.  (Anyway, I’d have needed to shrink the individual women down to fit nine women in this shot; not to mention the even longer post work.)

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Veterans Day and Election Day 2016


Jem, Conan (who couldn’t be present) and I all salute our country, our veteran relations and ancestors, and our democratic process.

In part, Veterans Day and Election Day are close enough together this year that I decided to combine the two together into one post. This isn’t normally my practice, but the theme I’m going to talk about here links into both, as it’s a matter that links the two days together.  As I’ve done before, I’m writing for all three of us, and adding their signatures to this article with my friends’ review and permission, for which I thank them most gratefully.

We at Around the Grid all have a father or grandfather who served in the U. S. armed forces at some point — as well, doubtless, as any number of ancestors we have never known — and we were raised “traditionally” enough to have a reasonably strong sense of patriotism, along with belief in our country and its inherent good and decency.  Our ancestors fought on behalf of the United States in any number of wars, going back to the Revolutionary War, because they believed in those facts.  They desired the right of a man — and now of a person — to be free, to determine their own destiny with the least imposition of rule by the government over them, and only by their own consent when the government did institute a law of some kind.  Jem and Conan haven’t mentioned any specifics about their fathers; but I can tell you that my own, as I think I’ve mentioned in the past, fought and bled for those ideals in France in World War II.  (This is the reason I wear the purple duster I have on above, for Dad’s Purple Heart; and the purple strip in Jemmy’s dress is suggestive.)  Many more since have fought, or simply served and stood ready to defend this country against its perceived enemies.  Again, as this blog tries to do every year, we salute those men and women — not always understood, never enough appreciated, often wounded in spirit as well as body, but willing to lay their lives down if called upon for the greater good.

Please don’t stop here; more words, even more important, are past the turn of the page.

Reblog: It’s Only Fashion — Thinking About Fannie Lou Hamer

In yesterday’s It’s Only Fashion, Cajsa Lilliehook writes in brief about the lovely green dress she’s wearing on Election Day; and it is a jewel of an outfit, so I’d encourage you to go and read the picture captions — if you’re only interested in fashion.

But more important, read the text, which is the main theme of this article.  I suppose it’s late for politics now, after the marathon yesterday waiting for the returns to come in, and the hangover today; but it can’t be emphasized enough why everyone, everywhere, in countries where democracy rules, should get off their asses and vote.  Not many people remember Fannie Lou Hamer; since I was 5 years old in 1964, and absolutely uninterested in politics at the time, I’d never even heard of Fannie Lou Hamer.  But she struck important blows for democracy, specifically because she fought to get the right to vote when it was denied her by the Mississippi power structure of the time.

For the Democrats too lazy to vote:  Obama won, but the margin could have been bigger.  For the Republicans who refused to use the right they shout about people dying to earn them:  imagine what might have happened if you’d gone out and voted yesterday.  For all of us, the truism is really true:  if you don’t participate, you don’t have the right to complain, because you surrendered your right when your time came to exercise it.  Even with a turnout of some 60% or so of registered voters yesterday, that added up in the popular vote to only a third or so of the American population.  That’s two thirds, not accounting for prisoners and minors, who didn’t give a bloody damn.  I gave a damn, and have for nearly 40 years now, since I reached legal voting age in 1976.  I’ve missed perhaps two elections in that time, and they were both when I was living in Pennsylvania and didn’t know what or who I was voting for.

If you really want to honor America, or Canada, or England, or where the bloody ever, then get out and vote on your election day.  For most Americans, that won’t be for some two years now, depending on local politics.  If you can vote before then, consider it not a privilege, not a right you choose not to use, but rather a duty and obligation to your city, your state and your country.

Posted November 7, 2012 by Harper Ganesvoort in Real Life

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Election Day in USA

Posted November 6, 2012 by Harper Ganesvoort in Real Life

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Politics by Title Deed

I read on another blog that there are some home site lots up for L$750/week or thereabouts.  The kicker to the thing:  the lots are on Grand Old Party, the home of the GOP Cafe and the Republican Party in Second Life.

Do you know just how great the temptation is to rent a plot for a few weeks, and the only things I’d put up would be a donkey and an Obama campaign sign?  I suspect, to borrow from The Begatting of the President that there would be great reaction…yea, even unto Orange County….


With the action going on in California, and now the federal courts, over their Proposition 8, I think it’s time I made my statement on the matter.  I have considered this over time, and I’m not doing this lightly or flippantly, or to be “part of a movement”; for me, this is the right thing to do and express.

I’ve known gay men and women (I’ve never seen the need to have a separate term for gay women myself, but that’s another matter), and worked with them side by side.  And as far as I’ve ever seen, they’ve been as good people as straight, not immoral in any way.  Of course, there’s this little thing about sexuality….  But, from all that I’ve learned over more years of life than I’m willing to admit with my avatar, homosexuality is not necessarily a question of choice of lifestyle.  And, if that is the case, then isn’t marriage a right to them as well as to “straight” folk like myself?

I’m keeping this more simplistic than I wanted to, as I’m rushed for time when I got this ready to publish.  But I wanted to get this up and add my small but present voice to the matter.  Please consider your words and their effect; I hope you’ll join in support one day.

More on the NO H8 Campaign

More Second Life NO H8 photos

SL in Politics: USA 1, UK 0

johnny (sic) at Second Life Shrink writes of how, during the current election in Great Britain, none of the parties appear to have a presence in Second Life.  This contrasts sharply with the 2008 American presidential and congressional elections, when supporters both Democrat and Republican were out in force in several areas.  johnny asks if British parties are wary of doing a John Edwards tank of griefers (see his article for links), or if the profile of the Grid has slipped over the past year and a quarter.

I would suggest, myself, with no supporting evidence, that there might be a third reason.  Remember that parliamentary elections in most countries run only 30 to 60 days (beyond the usual party posturing in the Commons, of course [grin]).  Perhaps it isn’t worth the time and money to British parties to try and whip up the faithful in world yet.

Question:  how much difference, or perhaps relevance, did the party support in world (much more grass-roots, but to a logically smaller audience) make to the 2008 American elections?

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