I started sending “political” e-mails recently, with the specific intention of sharing news about The People’s Convoy, the quiet and ongoing State of Emergency that I believe is a Really Big Problem for any remaining hope for democracy in the USA, and the associated and related Covid mandates.
Going forward, I intend to send only occasional political e-mails to friends in this “bcc” format. If you aren’t already on my mailing lists, and you’d like to receive some or everything I write, you can
1. Sign up for my Substack email list here: https://lifeisapalindrome.substack.com/ ; and/or
2. Sign up for my “family updates” by replying to this e-mail. (Family updates are very occasional (usually semi-monthly or quarterly), newsy reports on happenings in the Amaral Matilsky clan, including minimal politics, and these will not be shared on Substack.)
My website www.lifeisapalindrome.com still contains an archive of my essays (many dozens of which are on the topics of gut/brain health and healing with diet/nutrition, and require a password to access - just e-mail me if you’d like to read these), the book I wrote about my cross-country bike trip, and many of my favorite recipes. Jeff is working on an update to my website, which will soon archive all substack posts as well.
This morning I woke up early and couldn’t go back to sleep, and started thinking about how I am a woman. (I guess sleep-addled thinking is rarely earth-shattering once you wake up enough to write it down.) Mostly, I was thinking how even with the current political hyperfocus on gender and other Identities - and with the insinuation that such identities determine more about ourselves than anything else - being a woman is something I don’t owe anyone an explanation or even a definition for. Plus, my being biologically female is something that nobody else gets to decide, nor is it a commentary on others. I don’t have to agree with the criteria that someone else uses to determine gender, and my being female changes not at all the fact that all humans I meet deserve respect and courtesy.
Here’s the semi-related other thought I was having this morning: my USA political affiliation status…is not nearly so simple. Unlike the feelings of certainty and belonging that surround my experience of being female, I am currently politically homeless. And yet, even while my female-ness is entirely unlike my lack of association with either one of two corrupt political parties, I still believe that all humans I meet deserve respect and courtesy. Also still, I do not have to agree with someone else for this to be true.
After receiving my small Readers Digest the other day, a friend wrote:
——I don't know how you have patience/time to read all the articles. I get so bored with the state of things that I move on to workout/cooking/health and other topics. I look up what you and other friends send me, and I read, and I think: what is new under the sun today? Not much? ..OK, let me move on. 😁
I completely understand this totally valid reaction, and yet it’s still hard for me to disengage unless I am actively working on projects (hence, the extra large fish pond (no fish yet) I dug in our backyard last September), and my garden which is about to burst into all-maintenance-required mode. Otherwise, the gaping, friends- and family-sized holes in my life remind me that powerful human forces appear to be trying to (at the very least, these forces are actively benefitting while they) destabilize, disconnect, and destroy the vestiges of community I really hope for my children to belong to while and when they grow up.
So basically, social upheaval triggers Mama Bear instincts plus loneliness, and I channel some of this - during non-pond-and-gardening weather - into reading and writing.
What is going on? I keep looking for pieces of the puzzle. A friend of mine (who also grew up in a hippie, politically progressive home) notes: “I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. But now the tree has gotten up and moved somewhere else.”
This made me laugh extremely ruefully. Because it is so strange when trees migrate!! And my quest to investigate becomes more fundamental.
How can we collectively move beyond tribal politics? Does anyone have good ideas for turning the tide while we hurtle toward so many cliffs at once? At the very least, I want my kids to play with people who are resisting the calls to Other, to Scapegoat, to Blame. Maybe I hang too tightly to the belief that if we can more fully understand what’s going on, examine the causes of Pharma Facism and the upstream stranglehold that a few thousand Unimaginably Powerful, wealthy elites have upon our global economic system, it will be more possible for my children’s world to involve Great Shifting, rather than Enormous Collapsing, My personal goals are basic: encourage my children to reject facism, dogma, bullying, and fear, and to cultivate compassion, reason, flexibility, and curiosity .
I read and write because I keep hoping that together we are a more powerful force than even the World Economic Forum. I try to keep building community where I can, even while it crumbles. And then, I cook dinner because making our own food, and rejecting that which is produced by corporations, is an increasingly radical act. I also write because there is no one out there, generally speaking, for whom I want to vote, and I increasingly feel called to be political in other ways.
A friend notes:
>>> A year ago I didn’t even know what a podcast was 😂
Anyways, it’s true. Our mainstream media is now as false as the Soviet mainstream media was.
They say that many Soviets were caught off guard by the collapse of the USSR. I believe our MSM-believing USAians will similarly be surprised by the Great Reset’s Great Depression 2.0 that’s supposed to begin this year 2022.
Another friend writes:
The state of emergency declaration may be worse than you suggest. The new one does not seem to have an end date at all:
I'm beginning to believe that the only way out of this insanity is to vote Republican. But that will catapult us into new forms of insanity, many of which will bring harm to our friends, families, and communities that are just as egregious as the Covid stuff. I feel so stuck.
I read/skimmed all of the articles. Nothing new for me, nothing. I continue to hear all of this from my Conservative podcasters (Glenn Beck, Matt Walsh, Michael Knowles, Ben Shapiro, & Andrew Klavan.)
Liberal podcasters (Brett Weinstein & Heather Heying’s Dark Horse and the Blocked & Reported podcast) offer no insight, but do let you inside the minds of more reasonable Blues who dissent from the radical “Left” with respect to transsexualism & otherwise woke ideology.
The best podcast is No Agenda. Really, they’re neither Red nor Blue, but they lean Red Conservative plus they confound socialism & Sovietism. Otherwise, they’ve been ahead of the learning curve for RonaMania & the Great Reset.
Glenn Beck has been ahead of the curve too.
A friend says,
Aha, I was curious when the subject of wokery might come up in your writings… My friends were like the original woke before there was woke. That has been a challenging subject for me to hear new perspectives on. Oh dear!
I recommend a really thoughtful writer on the topic of wokery: he is an American (I think) living in Luxembourg, and he’s also a gay man (who used to be quite woke), and most importantly, he couples his critique of Wokeness with a critique of of our economic system, something I am increasingly certain needs to happen with an all-points bulletin. Early feminists, I only recently learned, were adamant that our economy and property ownership had to change in order to actually liberate women. What we ended up with instead is identity politics and no reform at all in the economic arena, so now (compared with a century ago) we are further enslaved by the reality that in order to have the “American Dream” (or even a semi-decent standard of living), both men and women need to work full-time outside of the home. Nothing much has improved for most poor people and especially children, many of whose parents now both have to work for money and have no time to cook or stay home with the kids. Capitalism loves this! How fabulous, that women work too (since unpaid work doesn’t qualify as work, of course)! The Economy gets two cogs in the wheel for the price of one, since cost of living conveniently rose to absorb two incomes right quick; coincidentally, the market for prepared food and prepared drugs became a bottomless pit of nutritional emptiness and economic opportunity…
Anyway. I don’t agree with all of Wildermuth’s conclusions, but he has total street cred, and helps me begin to understand the thoughts in my own (always-has-been-feminist) head. Two essays in his recent archive that I recommend:
https://rhyd.substack.com/p/trapped-in-the-woke-ideal “Trapped in the Woke Ideal: Sex Work, Suicide, and Hatred of the Hips”
https://rhyd.substack.com/p/the-unquiet-dead “The Unquiet Dead: And on the best fake girlfriend a gay dude could ever have”
As always, I would love to hear what you think about these and other topics.