On why we live here, or outside the US
Well I started this ages ago, but it’s taken some time to properly crystallize my thoughts (also to find writing time). I originally had in mind some large list thing, but I think I can sum it up in rather less words.
Short version, what the OWS thing stands for, that money should not translate to privilege, legal or otherwise.
Before we really started working on our immigration application I voted. I voted like an old person. I’d vote in every little quarterly election on annexations, rezonings, city council elections and so on. And it was fucking depressing. Why? Because I voted against the same rezoning measure in the area we lived in three separate times in three separate small elections. It was locally opposed because it would open up a hill behind our neighborhood to development. We didn’t really want a development slapped down putting further pressure on our grocery shopping. If the initiative had included permissions for more shopping (and erosion control), hey, that would have been ok. But, no. It was just (expensive) houses with no yards. Each time the measure was worded slightly differently, had it’s own public relations spin and obviously had money behind it. Each time it failed the margin was narrower as the backers perfected their public relations spin. It was depressing to realize that no matter how much I and other people voted that people with money would always, eventually, get their agenda through through use of slick advertising, misleading media campaigns and just the money to keep persisting (to inevitably make more money). So just the idea that even though I could vote, or I could protest (though I tend not to like the type of protest hangers-on you get. That and protests are generally ineffectual in that they are easy to ignore), but no matter how much I do vote or protest someone with more money will get their way. Well, anyhow, I kind of wonder what ever came of that since that was right before the big housing mess in 2008-2009.
I voted today. It’s different, and I guess in some ways there are less individual options. It’s much simpler and there’s no confusingly written bill summaries (where yes is no, no is yes, and both really mean maybe and raised taxes). But, you know what? I don’t feel like I had to cut away swathes of advertising, look past slick political campaigning and put aside mudslinging and misinformation to be able to make a choice. New Zealand is getting more in the way of slick politicking, but it’s still not that bad yet.
Oh yeah, it’s pretty awesome to gradually learn to not feel nervous when you see a cop. So less overall this sort of thing.
There you go.