Thursday, September 20, 2012

Some thoughts....

...that have been running through my head while working on this particular story that officially has me in over my head.

 - If I actually had money, I'd be the most dangerous muthafkr in the state.

-  I need a producer/editor in a really bad way.

-  I don't trust anyone when it comes to working with them on stories...I've been burned too many times.  I have to get over that and ask for help.

-  My eyes are going and my hearing is already shot.  Man I'm getting old.

- I don't trust anyone.

- I need motion graphics.

- fuck that...I don't need motion graphics.

- This state is corrupt to its core.

-  I still can't quite wrap my head around race v. class issues.

-  Jesus Christ my sinuses are on fire.

- I don't trust anyone.

-  I need money and resources.

-  What is the best way to expose sins of omission created by sins of commission?

-  I could just bartend in Bora Bora...that would be nice.

-  Most corruption goes on right in front of people's faces but it's so complicated people can't understand how it is happening.  They sense something is wrong but they can't wrap their heads around the schemes.  Once you learn how the schemes work...real estate, contracting, gifting, accounting, campaign conduits, it becomes easy to uncover the graft from one story to the next.  But that doesn't make it easy to explain.

-  How did that woman get into those pants?

-  I need motion graphics.

- I trust my friend CB.  I wish CB did motion graphics.

Thanks for sharing my neurosis.  I'm using the blog for therapy.


Anonymous said...

Even without money, you (and your friend at Slabbed, who is in Mississippi, but whatever) may well be the most "dangerous" mother-lovers in the state.

Everyone needs money and resources. That's why the bad guys just steal them from other people. Thinking that you have a right to steal money and resources, including the unwaged labor of others, is a big part of what makes the bad guys bad.

I'd include thwarting the potential of others in an intentional way, and mocking the risks they are taking to be where they are contributing what they do as a kind of theft.

Talent is love; if you reject or thwart the talent and capacity someone is demonstrating, you are rejecting the love they are trying to offer to the world.

This lack we are all feeling is structural; look at how much some people are taking, and see how many are left without living wage jobs or the security they need, and you don't feel like you are personally failing.

It is smart not to trust anyone, but also dumb. Being worthy of trust is also a way of loving.

Louisiana IS corrupt right down to its core. It may well be where Satan comes home to sleep at night. The depth and extent of corruption in Louisiana is searing.

Your work, where you do your best to hold a standard and to express a world view that asserts that it does not need to be this way is an act of love.

"My country, right or wrong" is often quoted by people who want to cloak their cowardly willingness to enable or excuse bad actions in the virtues of patriotism or loyalty.

But the second part of that quote goes something like this: "if right, to be kept right. If wrong, to be set right."

True patriotism, and true loyalty in relation to family and friends, hews to what is good and true as it loves what is still as yet imperfect.

I find the Christian concept of resisting idolatry helpful; in a world where awesome people worship Gods other than mine, and assholes "share my faith", I think of it in a Christian way as my personal conviction, and in the public square, I recognize it in anyone who outs fronters, fakers, cheats, welshers on bets, betrayers of trusts both private and public... anyone who tears down stage set virtue and honors the weeping child behind the curtain.

jeffrey said...

But do you trust anybody? There was some confusion as to that point.

Jason Brad Berry said...


swampwoman said...

I think that you just might get re-energized this weekend at RTVII - perhaps you'll find that elusive trustworthy partner at the event.

Sop81_1 said...

I feel your pain.


Anonymous said...

How a woman gets into her pants is a less interesting technical question than the best way to peel her out of them, in my humble opinion.

Mac said...

When I spoke to a friend this weekend about the corruption in one of the southern parishes, it wasn't that she didn't know about it, it was more than she didn't care. Or maybe it was just apathy, as she compared today's corruption to that of 25 years ago ... "it's so much better now!"

When I lived in Chicago under Richard M. Daley, people knew that there was rampant corruption; if the streets got plowed on time, though, that was enough for a reelection. I've heard that said of Judge Perez, too, that he "took care" of people, so they were more than happy to look the other way.

A fine mess, indeed.

Anonymous said...

Mac, that line about "taking care" of people may just contain one of the deep existential truths about corruption.

We've got a chemical company here, responsible for the funny smell in the air when the wind is wrong, and for cancer clusters and the full catastrophe.

So where to they do their "community work"? Why, with a little green washing "environmental organization" that claims that their annual boat tour on the river is part of their "community education" strategy, which is well funded by government grants.

Their private partner in this fun family event is none other than the chemical company that dirties the river to begin with.

Grants do not go to groups that want to do the kind of environmental justice work that might curb their activities, but the friends and fans of the green washing outfit praise the chemical company to the skies for their efforts, and praise the do-nothing "greens" for the way they feel in their hearts, forty years of no change regionally notwithstanding.

Another example: famous Mr. Koch makes billions from cancer causing industries, and when workers
and local residents complain about those factories, he points to the many cancer fighting charities he supports.

On a smaller scale, a local lawyer I know left his wife of 30 years and his teenage kids up shit creek when he left for a barely legal mistress, but he soothed the wounded moral sense of his business associates by "taking care of" his office manager and her daughter.

The office manager was a single mother, and his the truly small ways he helped her, mostly by not firing her when her kid was sick two days in a row, led her to praise him to the skies, and made it easy for people to overlook his betrayal of the woman who worked to put him through university and law school.

If you think someone might be dirty and you aren't quite sure in what way, look to where they do their charitable work for signals about what sins keep them awake at night.

Deadbeat dads tutor kids, cancer-causing- business men run to beat cancer.

Bad men who "take care of" people are drawing the lines about who is and who is not part of the tribe. If you want their largesse, you help them cover up the shit they are doing to people being cast as "outside" the tribe.

Corruption is tribal. Blow the whistle, you are outside the tent. Fall victim to it and complain, you are outside the tent. You want to be "taken care of"? You better be ready to help bury the bodies of those who didn't make that choice.

The tribal nature of corruption goes a long way to explaining why we get bent out of shape when THEY do it, even if WE would find excuses to forgive one of our own doing the same thing.

It is harder ( but better) to walk a line that says, "Don't do it. Not ever."