Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The Goddess Land Empire - Lexa Moon


"I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion." - Alexander the Great

Last week in my AP Human Geography class, we were assigned a project that would involve creating a country. We all drew papers from a hat to see what type of state we would create. I drew “Empire,” so I created an Empire that I called Goddess Land, in tribute to my pagan beliefs. We were given the liberty to construct the government, create the people, and wildlife, and all other creative rights. I shared my project with Kent, the Founder of Refuse to Cooperate, and he thought the actual way I constructed the government was interesting, so I decided to share it with the blog readers. So, without further a due, this is the Goddess Land Empire.

The Government

The Goddess Land Empire is a Democratic Socialist empire. It has three branches of government; a Parliament, which makes the laws; a Judiciary, which interprets these laws; and an Executive, which is democratically elected to serve a life long term as Emperor/Empress. They are responsible for the lawful execution of the laws passed by the Parliament.

The Goddess Land Empire is made up of sovereign States, each with a standing High Court. Each High Court is made up of a certain amount of democratically elected nobles (depending on the population of the state) and each has a Prime Minister. The Prime Minister is democratically appointed by the High Court. Once a year all Prime Ministers meet up and form the imperial Judiciary, which is led by an appointed Speaker.

Each high court has the right to make laws regarding its own state. However, the Imperial Court has the right to make laws that govern the whole of the empire. Further, its rulings are expected to trump those of the lower courts.

In order for a proposition to become law, the proposition must have at least two noble sponsors and be approved by the appropriate standing committee in the Parliament. When the proposition is on the High Court floor, the court, with the exception of the Prime Minister will vote on the proposition. A simple majority will make the proposition law; however, if the proposition is split evenly on votes, the Prime Minister will serve as a tie-breaker.

The Executive branch is made up of the Emperor/Empress and his/her counsel of advisers. The job of the Emperor/Empress is to lead the empire on the right path, representing the Empire. The Emperor/Empress lawfully executes the laws passed by the Parliament and approved by the Judiciary. Further, they are to be the Commander-in-Chief of both the domestic and foreign arms of the empire's defense forces.

The Judiciary interprets cases and laws that come before it based on the concept of Legal Precedent. However, when, in their good judgement, precedent does not apply to a given case, they are authorized to rule in a case according to their good reasoning. They are also responsible for building a system of civil courts to adjudicate minor matters between citizens that do not require the full attention of the state authority.

However, none of these branches can change the unalienable rights of the people. The people are guaranteed the rights to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, education, work, food, housing, and health care.

The People of the Goddess Land 
Empire


The Empire's society is a highly developed society which mirrors a Victorian steampunk style of fashion, architecture, mode of energy, transportation, and much more.

The people of the Goddess Land Empire are very open minded to most everything, such as sexuality, magic, religion, style, and much more.

The major religion of the people is Paganism. However, there is no official imperial religion. People who practice magic are looked upon favorably, so much so that there is even a whole museum dedicated to magic, and its practitioners, located in the capital of the Goddess Land Empire, Moon City.


Imperial Nature 

The Goddess Land Empire's wildlife mostly consists of magical creatures such as unicorns, fairies, mermaids, trolls, and much more.

All intelligent life, such as trolls or fairies, is given citizenship and allowed to vote in elections that affect the lands that they inhabit; however, they are not allowed to run for office.

Wildlife that is not intelligent is given imperial protection from sport hunting.

The plant life is also very magical. A lot of plants are used by the defense forces for their magical properties.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Living With Mental Illness in America


"I start to think there really is no cure for depression, that happiness is an ongoing battle, and I wonder if it isn't one I'll have to fight for as long as I live. I wonder if it's worth it." - Elizabeth Wurtzel

"My depression has followed me around my whole life like a black dog, a spectre from which there has been no escape." - Winston Churchill 

"I speak of a clinical depression that is the background of your entire life, a background of anguish and anxiety, a sense that nothing goes well, that pleasure is unavailable and all your strategies collapse." - Leonard Cohen

"I have suffered with mental illness silently for the great majority of my life. Thankfully, for the past few years, I have begun to seek help. Admittedly, however, it has not been easy. The hardest part is being taken seriously." - Kent Allen Halliburton

Living with mental illness in the United States can be a nightmare. First, you have to get past the stigma. People with diagnosed mental illnesses are looked upon by many as either dangerous or a complete waste of flesh. They are not taken seriously, and they tend to get marginalized. This has an additional side effect. This treatment leads to many people with several mental illnesses living much of their lives in silent pain and suffering just to avoid the stigma of being declared mentally ill. For some, it gets so bad that they end up either dead from self medicating or homeless because they are unable to function normally. Further, in the past, admitting to mental illness carried an additional spectre. If a person admitted to being mentally ill, they could end up in a permanent facility for the terminally insane.

Once a person has managed to get past the stigma and is getting treatment for their illness, they have to spend months and even, sometimes, years going through examination after examination to find the right combination of medications that makes it possible for them to function normally in society. This struggle can be a massive pain all on its own. Unfortunately, for some, they are never able to reach normalcy, and they struggle their entire lives, even on meds, just to function like a human being. This trip can have severe negative effects on people. In between medications, people can end up in the hospital where they can be locked away for months at a time while medical professionals attempt to stabilize them.

Luckily, mental health is beginning to be taken more seriously and many more people are beginning to get the treatment that they need to function in normal society. However, there is much left to be done. New medications are coming out all the time, and many medications have side effects that are worse than what they are meant to alleviate. Further, people with severe problems, fearing the consequences, may not want treatment. This puts their future in a precarious position. Most mental facilities are no longer designed for permanent residency. This means that a person cannot be easily sent away for life. So, what happens if they have no family to live with? Further, what happens to them if they are poor or no one in their family can foot the bill for a life long care facility? Usually, they end up on the street.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, upwards of twenty-five percent of the American homeless population, in excess of five-hundred thousand people, is mentally ill. They admit, though that this number may be under estimated. This is so because their numbers rely on responses to in person examinations and logistical information gathered from local municipalities who measure mental illness among their local homeless populations. So, what kind of mental illnesses are Americans suffering from. Lately, because of the wars in the Middle East, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has come to the forefront of Psychiatric care. There are also illnesses like Schizophrenia, which is a mental disorder that is characterized by hallucinations, either auditory, visual, olfactory, or tactile, and delusions. It is usually treated with a combination of anti-psychotic medications and psychotherapy.

If you have a mental illness that is going untreated, please, do not be afraid to seek out the help that you need. Their are resources for you out there. You just have to look for them! If you have no other options and are beginning to feel helpless, check yourself into the hospital. They are obligated, by law, to get you the help you need. Remember that there is always tomorrow!

This piece is the beginning of a series of pieces on mental illness. The main goal will be to list major mental illnesses and examine exactly what they are and how they effect people.

Taking Trump DOWN!



"Democrats need to catch up with us, or we are leaving them behind!" - Lexa Moon

Are you wondering how Progressives can take down the Trump administration and corporate Democrats? Don’t worry, we Progressives have a secret weapon!

What is the Progressive's secret weapon? YOU!

According to info posted on PBS.org, there was a 58% voter turnout during the 2016 Presidential election. What were the results? We got a Republican victory in all three branches of government. These were not the results we wanted, but the Democrats didn’t give us much of a choice either, considering that they anointed Hillary Clinton long before the Democratic primaries every took place.

According to a Gallup survey posted on Salon.com, only 36% of the country identifies as conservative. This is down from 38% in 2014 and 40% in 2012. So, what does this mean? It means that a lot of Progressives did not vote. However, if they vote in 2018, we will have a solid chance to take back Congress!

What’s your job? Get involved! Join campaigns for real progressive candidates, such as those involved with Justice Democrats for a New Congress. Throughout the elections make sure to register as many people as possible to vote! Knock door to door to get more people on board so we can take back Congress and get big money out of government once and for all! Make congress and the politicians accountable for the mess that they gave us in the 2016 election!

Make your voice heard! I know I will!


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Twitter- @lexa_moon

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Are You Troll Food?


When a person first gets on the internet to socialize, they try to justify how they were taught or what they learned, which means they argue with anything that does not line up with what they were taught. ('This is my opinion' + 'or you are' + '<insert insult here>'). They use the shame mentality to justify their opinions as if to disagree makes you less than perfect. Most think a Facebook group is akin to the cork board at the local laundromat that people post help wanted or for sale or local events to be monitored and rigidly cleaned up. Further, bad comments are to be deleted and difficult users are to be kicked out. This is farthest from the Truth. A Facebook group is more like a community meeting to discuss issues that are of concern. If you were attending a community meeting, it would be considered rude and inappropriate to tell someone to shut up or to kick them out of the community because they brought up an issue of concern that someone else did not like. This is called being intolerant of other opinions. Yes there is such a thing as Netiquette or a standard of internet conduct. Google it.

There are millions of Facebook Groups. The best ones for truth are the ones that let everyone have a say. They do not Police their sites as much as amateur admins do. Sure, they have a responsibility to keep the porn out, as well as, the sunglasses ads, but other than that, the admins job is not to play judge, jury and executioner to the disagreements in their groups, The more diverse the groups are, the closer to truth they get. We all have to step up, to create reason and to create open discussion. No one person will have all the answers, and on the internet, no one cares who you are. The internet is all about information. Since the inception of social media and discussion boards, people have been communicating their subjective opinions. Most are just echo's of how they were taught. Some were not taught and seek understanding, There are, however, hidden treasures on the internet. If you know where to look, you can find some really good stuff. Don't be so quick to block someone just because they say something you don't like. Maybe they are speaking a truth you need to hear?

There is no telling. What you choose to take in is your choice, not theirs. On the internet, if you react to baited attacks, you are Troll food. Trolls Love Emotional people. So, use your reason, and take your time to look for the good stuff. Jesus does not promote kicking people out of the club just because they don't agree.

"Matthew 25:39-41

39 When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 And the king will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ 41 Then he will say to those on his right, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels."

Internet 101: DO NOT REACT!

You are responsible for how you react, not anyone else.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

The Refuse to Cooperate Platform - Part 3


The Demands of Refuse to Cooperate

As Marxist-Leninists We:

1. Demand that all means of production be in the hands of the workers through a socialist state. This state should be organized into workers' councils with a centrally planned economy geared towards meeting human needs.

2. Demand an end to all systems of oppression such as white supremacy, patriarchy, as well as. discrimination faced by lgbtq people, and the disabled.

3. Defend the rights of all people to quality healthcare, housing, food, and education organized and managed by the workers through the state without economic obstacles.

4. Demand an end to the drug war, the use of prison slave labor, and police brutality.

5. Defend the rights of all nations to self determination and national liberation, including the right of secession. Accordingly, we demand an end to colonialism and the return of native lands to their rightful owners.

6. Demand an end to all imperialist wars of aggression and stand firmly with all those groups fighting against imperialism and with the working class globally rather than the working class of any one country.

7. Demand a complete end to all government spying on its citizens, public ownership of all internet bandwidth, and the creation of copyright laws that protect the individual while also protecting the free flow of information.

8. Demand total amnesty for all immigrants and an end to all aggression against immigrants.

9. Demand reparations and cancellation of debts be given to all victims of imperialism and colonialism including the families of former slaves and former and current colonies.

10. Demand aggressive action against climate change and environmental damage, as well as, The implementation of ecologically friendly forms of power generation, waste management, emission controls, and widespread public transportation.

11. Demand a rejection of liberal ideas of "free speech," as zero tolerance be given to reactionary opinions. Free speech ends where oppressive speech begins.

12. Demand the creation of a working class, mass based, internationalist socialist political party to enact these demands