peggedbea's Sift Talk Posts

FHA loans, why are these a good idea?

So, we're in the process of buying a new house.... and we're almost done but I got curious so....

I just looked up FHA loan and the internet is doing a very poor job of explaining it. Does anyone have a good grasp of what an FHA loan is, why someone would get one and how it is more than just a government sponsored way to get people to buy shit they can't afford?

Occupy Together

I have 0 faith in the political process. I have close to 0 faith in protest movements in America. I went to one today anyhow.

I went to check out the first day of Occupy Fort Worth. As a protest movement, or a solidarity march, or whatever, I believe there is little if any chance of success. Politicians may consider changing their rhetoric after a while, but no real changes will be made. Corporations are not going to wheedle their way out of government or give up any of their power because people march around banking districts in their nikes and tweet about it on their iphones. These things will not change business as usual. I donated some food to the hand full of people camping out over night on the sidewalk. It was peanut butter manufactured by a subsidary of proctor&gamble. This will change nothing because at the end of the day, we're still financing the top 1%. Our every move finances our oppression.

However, occupations are springing up in cities all over the world. Thousands of frustrated people, with very very common problems are meeting in parks to commune and share their struggles, explore direct democractic processes, meet their police officers, and then share their ideas and experiences with other people thousands of miles away. This is pretty damn cool.

It's pretty damn cool because I think, if it has a chance to do anything at all it's to build communities to solve their individual problems together. A lot of the people I met today were worried and frustrated about their student loan debt... what if all the general assemblies within all the occupy movements simultaneously voted to just to stop paying? Thousands and thousands of people just default on their student loan debt? What then? I saw the people at Occupy Houston voted to withdrawal all of their money from large banks. I'm sure similar measures will be adopted at others if not all Occupy movements. Occupy Dallas opened a day care. The thousands at Occupy Wallstreet are voting to adopt a new currencies to use amongst themselves. At Occupy Fort Worth we discussed guerilla gardening tactics and what to do about the oil & gas companies who are lying to the population, polluting our beautiful city and leaving dead ugly worthless patches of land all over. What if occupy movements grow and start clothes shares? and ride shares? and bike shares? and food shares? and land shares? and house shares? What if all the new friends we're making collectively decide on ways to consume less, alternative ways to educate our children together, alternatively support each other in sickness and in poverty? I do not think all the signs and standing and camping and chanting is going to change anything ever, but I do think this is the first time communities have been formed this rapidly, this vastly, this simultaneously all over the world with instant access to each other and I do think communities are where people become empowered and I think it will be fascinating to participate in and watch unfold.

Anyone else attending any occupy events?? tell me about them!!

So nerds, tell me about your Ipads

So, I recently made the little side business I've been buidling for a few years into my main business. It's going very well.
I'm not a gadget nerd like some of you and like to learn about products from personal experiences. I hate reading web articles about shit as I'm dyslexic and it's a pain in the ass.

I want a little device to streamline things at my wellness center. I think the Ipad might be it. And would like all your nerdy opinions about it.

In my head, I want a smallish (but not too small) portable device to:
1. load all my spa music on, plug into some speakers and go
2. keep track of my appointments, schedule and client info (phone numbers, email addresses)
3. load games on it for my kids to play on days they have to be up at the center with me.... and possibly play movies off of netflix?
4. track all of my monies (business accounts, personal accounts, etc)... possibly load quick books or something similar?? pay business related and personal bills, etc etc
5. access the wellness centers online booking/register software
6. order business supplies online while at work checking my stock (yes, the center has wifi)
7. keep to do lists
8. possibly keep notes/charts on my clients
9. it'd be super cool if i could load pictures of my clients postural analysis testing and track progress visually, but its not really necessary... just think it'd be cool
10. be able to quickly access/look up information about various conditions and pathologies my clients might have that I'm not familiar with and find out contraindications or techniques that would be helpful to them.
11. load my audible books/kindle games and books on to to entertain me on slow days/trips (love to plug it into my car and hear my audio books on my drives to houston)

I know I could do all this on a laptop but I'd really like it to all be on one handheld device I can carry around with center with me and stick in my backpack and bike to work/home with easily. Also, if It's being used to entertain my kids while they're stuck at work with me, is it still a business expense?? Any other things I should know about??

so nerds and nerdy apple fan boys... what do you think?
Is the Ipad what I need or am I dreaming up something that hasn't been invented yet?

5 year old threatens to Cunt Punch shitty teenager.

So, there's a jack ass junior high kid that lives next door. He's a total asshole to my kids. We pretty much think he's a dick.

So my 5 year old son was riding his bike with training wheels today. Stupid jackass kid started making fun of him for it.

My kid: "Shut up you butthole, before I punch you in your vagina"
Jackass Kid:

I thought this was poignant because of the epic frontpage post.

I personally think it's extremely hilarious. I won't let my kid know that, of course, because I don't typically condone this kind of stuff. But that ass totally deserves it. If you're a teenager and you get your kicks making fun of kindergarteners, you totally deserve to be punked by one. And it's extremely awesome.

On the other hand, somehow my 5 year old picked up the idea of "cunt punching" .... I think they absorb this shit through osmosis.
So am I condoning a misogynistic attitude and abusive ideation by not getting on to him for this? Is he a burgeoning sexist abuser because he intentionally emasculated this kid by assigning him female genitalia?

Right, I'm reading too much into it.


passports for kids

Has anyone ever applied for a US passport for their kids?

We're leaving the country for summer vacation and I'm trying to get them a passport. Apparently, the passport office wants ALL parties listed on the birth certificate present when applying. This is a problem. Assuming I could even find their father (and I probably could if I put a little effort in, given he isn't on a bender or back in the state asylum), it would be physically dangerous to do so. No one on the phone is the least bit helpful. Anyone know a loophole?

Dan Savage is Awesome.

We saw Dan Savage speak last night in this small venue in Dallas. It was amazingly fucking cool. He says he does all of his speaking engagements in Q&A format and he's used to speaking at universities, so a small room full of actual adults was neat. Though, I don't think the questions were too terribly different from what you'd get on a university campus.

A lot of the questions he answered were versions of the same questions I've heard him answer on youtube videos, so the answers to them were a version of the same answers I've heard before. He said a couple of new things like I liked a lot.

1. the "gay agenda" is the radical notion that gay people are human beings (stolen from the women's movement like awesomeness)
2. the rising divorce rate correlates with the cultural shift that imposed monogamy on men as well. apparently, the christian right sometimes likes to blame divorce rates on birth control, but really it correlates more with marriage making the shift from a property transaction to an equal partnership where expectations of faithfulness were placed on men for the first time.... ever(?)
3. dicks were designed like plungers, to suck out the cum of the last guy who was up there... monogamy ain't natural
4. adorable stories about his son being straight
5. i'm always amazed at the amount of people who have sexual issues with their partners (he wants to do something i dont want to do, she wont do what i want to do, im sexually bored, i cant talk about X issue with this partner blah blah blah). and the amount of people who are unwilling to try out their partners kink or the amount of people who are scared to tell their partner about their kink. this hurts my heart, we should all indulge each others kinks more often (reasonable, semi-sanitary, not horrifically immoral kinks that makes us want to curl up in a corner and cry that is)
6. there was a gay pastor there from the bright divinity school in fort worth. reverend sprinkle was apparently the first openly gay clergy to make a video for the "it gets better" project so he and a seminary student were Dan's special guests. it was pretty awesome because at first everyone was really super confused about the priests in the audience. especially with the liberal amounts of catholic bashing. i also realized that i totally wanted to fuck this hip young priest. and im usually fairly icked out by the thought of sex with strangers, or with religious people. my friends were relieved because i always get chewed out by them for being so cerebral about doin-its. i get a lot of shit for having sex intellectually.. i should've asked an about my intellectual sex hang ups. which im not even sure is an actual problem. maybe my friends just like dumb people. anyway, i totally hit on a fucking priest last night. i'm going to hell.

Dan was entertained by my question and I was sitting just to his left so we had a hilarious little back and forth about my over-sexed, giant, jack-mormon family. He's nice and funny and witty as hell.

All together it was an awesome way to spend $20 and my friend Ashley and I will continue to argue about the merits of monogamy vs. the merits of random meaningless sex until we're old old ladies. With facelifts and smokers coughs and dead husbands.

pro life, pro choice, and the war on drugs

I'm not "pro-life" in the typical sense of the word. I could get behind a "pro-life" movement that was actually pro-life. For example, we know that women in poverty are more likely to chose abortion... so we could advocate and adopt national policies that reduce poverty. We could make adoption a more reasonable option for people who don't typically adopt (but would consider it if it were at all feasible for their situation) ... like, gays, lesbians, people with more modest incomes or single parents. By and large the people who are vehemently pro-life are also the same people who are vehemently anti-poor and anti-welfare. This seems ridiculously illogical to me. If someone could explain the logic behind this, I would listen and appreciate it. We also know that for a long time, back alley unregulated abortions were a leading cause of death for women of child bearing age... how on earth is legislating abortion back to back alley clinics pro-life???

So, I went to a planned parenthood rally a few weekends ago. Not because I love abortion. But because I love affordable and accessible birth control and checkups. I want them to exist when my daughter is broke and in college. The organizers of the rally were with the ISO (19 year old socialists from the liberal arts college in the hippest part of the metroplex) and they're kind of obnoxious. They were chanting things about "free abortion on demand" which I think is kind of damaging to the case we should be making. Sure, the idealogical cause behind the legislative assaults on planned parenthood maybe an attack on abortion. But the result of those attacks is only going to increase abortions... If you take away access to affordable birth control for the most at-risk portion of the population, and take away a well known and visible place to get well-woman exams, STD tests and education.. then you're only going to eventually increase the rate of abortions. I feel this is the argument that should be made. And I feel the outrage of the movement to defend PP is not making that case successfully. But you can't tell a 19 year old socialist anything.

I also feel like a pro-life movement must be against the death penalty, vehemently pro education and social services for societies most vulnerable and for an affordable and accessible health care system and fiercely pro-kindness. The absence of those qualities makes your cause seem hollow and hypocritical and ignorant and anti-woman.

I also have issues with some who are loudly pro-choice. The statement that I often hear is how it's ok to have an abortion if you find your child is going to be born with some disability. So, of course this is the choice of the parents and I wouldn't seek to take away their right to choose. But this statement is flippant, and ignorant and probably damaging and probably eugenics. The idea behind it is that people who happen to have disabilities have no worth, are nothing but burdens on their families and society, and have no reason or right to exist. This bullshit needs to be challenged with education and a strong disabilities rights movement.

Oh, I've also decided that many recreational drugs (not all of course, but many) are human rights issue. And need to be combated as such. I did a fuck ton of drugs in my youth and the anti-drug PSA's and 1980s DARE classes did nothing to prevent it. And left me feeling very unmoved. But knowing the kind of kid I was, PSA's about the gross human rights violations that take place inside the drug trade would have made a much greater impact on my psyche. I demand PSA's that show us how cocaine is made, who it's made by, what it does to beautiful cultures and maybe someone should do something to figure up how many murders per gram of coke on average or something like that.

The pervasive nature of classism and poverty

I'm covering classism and poverty in a class right now. And I'm pretty certain it's the most interesting thing I've ever studied academically.

I've decided classism is more sneaky and pervasive than racism or sexism. And while I've consciously rejected racism and sexism, I have not at all recognized my own upper middle-class privilege and perpetuate classism daily in my own minute judgments of others. For example, my brother and a good friend of mine tend to date girls that I label as "trashy" or "some hood-rat shit". These girls are never good to my boys. But my judgments of them are often based on their parenting. I was discussing this with a friend and he said "well, you're just actually a better mother than they are". Well.... no. I'm better at raising kids to survive in middle class white culture than they are. But my kids wouldn't last two days in their neighborhood. They're raising their kids to exist in a poor community. That doesn't make them "bad" moms, or "white trash". These "trashy" girls are simply a product of their culture and exhibiting the behaviors and standards of their community. And chiding my brother and my friend for dating out of their "class" is the equivalent of chiding them for dating out of their "race". And I'm sorry. Realizing you've been an asshole is good and humbling.

A question I've had for a long time is if being raised in an upper middle class community but now being poor/working class changes my class identification or not. Apparently, it does not. Because my personal culture is more in line with upper middle class people, I still reap the benefits of middle class privilege on a daily basis. Even though, my parents were kind of shitty and there was a good deal of abuse and mental/emotional instability going on in kidhood... My language, attitude, education level, culture, dress, and lifestyle still reflects the income, education level, and race of my ancestors. I still have the class benefits of worldliness and culture. I continue to reap the benefits of rich schools and fancy houses and travel and good healthcare. I can fit in with a middle class world and am therefore preferred for employment positions and loans, etc.

Now, Poverty. I'm totally curious about what everyone (especially our libertarian friends) think about these.
Here are some poverty statistics:

The three root (philosophical) causes of poverty are

A single mother with 2 children living in the DFW area needs to make $20/hr just to afford basic necessities. This is 242% above the poverty level and almost $13/hr above the minimum wage. Here is a calculator where you can see how much you need to make in your area to afford to live.

There are more people living in poverty in America today than the total population of Canada.

The white/Caucasian group makes up the largest racial-ethnic group living in poverty today despite common (and inaccurate) stereotypes about the demographics of those in poverty.

A Center for American Progress report reveals that the largest increase of poor residents is in the nation's suburbs.

Poverty is not intractable despite (inaccurate) common stereotypes. The U.S. poverty rate fell by more than 40 percent between 1964 and 1973. By rebuilding our economy, creating good jobs, investing in families, and ensuring economic security, we can replicate this success and move millions into the middle class. A 2007 CAP report shows that just four public policies would cut the U.S. poverty rate by 26 percent in 10 years.

If the wealth of the top one-fifth was shared with the lowest one-fifth, poverty in america would be eradicated.

Over 19 million people are working and living in poverty.

One in 8 americans lives below the federal poverty line.

Middle and Upper class women have .8 more children than women living in poverty (despite inaccurate stereotypes).

Motherhood is one of the largest risk factors for poverty in old age.

Women and people of color are at a higher risk of experiencing pervasive poverty in their lives.

People in poverty have a higher rate of preventable diseases, a shorter life expectancy, higher infant mortality, more often malnourished, are more susceptible to emotional disturbances, alcoholism and victimization, lack sleep, are more likely to experience stunted growth, have higher arrests rates, imprisonments and longer sentences, exposed to higher levels of air, water pollution and unsanitary conditions, have more unstable marriages and achieve less academically.


On the over-sexualization of our daughters

I've noticed some toddler beauty pageant sifts floating around lately, and I thought this was an interesting article to share.

More misogyny in the media stuff and how it's affecting young girls at a young age.

My daughter was never allowed to play with bratz dolls or the ilk, or be subjected to commercial advertising in the home. It's kind of a struggle to raise a child who is neither a total social outcast or a total brainwashed consumed child, lacking a true sense of self and who she is. Interestingly, I have found it markedly less difficult to raise a boy with a healthy identity, without being bombarded by marketing, who is still able to fit in cohesively with a more mainstream peer group at school. I wonder how much of this is their individual personalities and how much of this is example of little girls being more susceptible or specifically targeted by media that dictates "how to be".

Rachel Combe makes the case that little girls are acting too sexy, too soon and why.

From the article:

"Princesses are just a phase," Orenstein writes, but they mark a girl's "first foray into the mainstream culture.... And what was the first thing that culture told her about being a girl? Not that she was competent, strong, creative, or smart but that every little girl wants — or should want — to be the Fairest of Them All."

Orenstein builds her case with stats showing that the more a girl is exposed to girly-girl culture, the more vulnerable she is to depression, eating disorders, distorted body image, and risky sexual behavior. She describes one study in which college girls shown just two commercials with stereotyped portrayals of women — a girl raving about acne medicine and a woman thrilled with a brownie mix — expressed less interest in math- and science-related careers afterward than girls who hadn't been shown the ads. These days, the average child in America watches an estimated 40,000 ads a year.

Anyone else have daughters? Anyone else have an opinion?

End Times: Day 5

Some enormous Ice- fuck -Storm has engulfed the top half of Texas. No one has gone to work, school, the grocery store or even wal*mart (except for drax, he got balls and walked there) since Monday afternoon. There are rolling brown outs to conserve energy, everyone is affected by them except for the the steelers and the packers at their fancy rich fuck hotel in downtown Fort Worth, apparently. Let's not embarrass ourselves in front of the visiting football players with our 3rd world infrastructure. Texas is now borrowing power from Mexico's grid. The Super Bowl is here on Sunday, I'm expecting the death toll will begin mounting by then.

Car accidents are at record highs. A friend from Houston told me this morning that there were 200 accidents in Houston between midnight and 6am. Ridiculous!

It's like living in someones freezers. Except all the food has freezer burn and you can't eat any of it because the microwave uses too much power. And you might slip on the ice and die.

I'm stir crazy, have the asspiss, and we're running out of food and cigarettes. Call out the National Guard, or the Mormom's... we need some MRE's.

I'm tired of this apocalyptic wonderland. And Canadians, I now think you're all just insane. I am not in awe of your ability to cope with this bullshit weather half of the year. I just don't understand why you haven't all moved to Florida. Or Brazil. Or Honduras. I think you could probably do a lot for human rights in the 3rd world actually, if you all just abandoned your frozen arctic palaces and migrated to the same few equatorial countries. But perhaps the harsh, unforgiving frozen tundra has crippled your will to live. This is an abusive relationship, Canadians.

Also, I can't pay any bills because my bank account thinks I'm broke. I actually have a few thousand dollars in checks that came monday evening, I just haven't been able to deposit them because I CAN'T GET TO THE FUCKING BANK. Even if pizza boys were delivering, I couldn't buy one. The pizza, or the boy.

My electric company just emailed me and told me not to call them if my power goes out because 1. it's just going to happen, deal with it. and 2. they've closed their offices due to inclement weather and they're not coming back until Monday.

The post office is the only thing still in operation, please mail us food.


I'd post pictures of how cold and dead we are here, but I'm too cold and dead to figure out how to do that.

How satisfied are you with your job?

  (14 votes)
  (11 votes)
  (4 votes)
  (1 vote)
  (16 votes)

A total of 46 votes have been cast on this poll.

I have 3 jobs. And all of them make me feel warm and fuzzy inside. I was just curious how many people feel the same way I do, and how many people want me to stfu when I talk about how amazing my jobs are.

btw, my jobs are all extremely amazing.

oh! tell us what you do for a living in the comments. I always think it's interesting to see what everyone does when they're not upvoting cat farts.

Family arguments have just gotten sinister

OR another installment of: Glenn Beck is poisoning my family.

Two years ago one of my sisters won her 20 year battle with addictions. It was really exciting.

Then she turned on the news for the first time ever. It was Fox News.

Now, she's spent 2 years absorbing everything that is said on fox news. Her entire world perspective is based on the last 2 years. And it's based on fox's interpretation of it.

The mixture has become almost worse than the cocktail of drugs and booze and anguish in her system.

She is unable to carry on a conversation that isn't about something Glenn Beck told her. She's completely convinced that Obama is hitler, even though she has very little idea what that means because she spent her life in a self absorbed drug stooper.

She is completely terrified and also completely convinced that Glenn Beck is in fact our savior. Our shining light in this darkness, and we have to follow him out of this tunnel of shit or face certain death. If you say the tiniest thing to contradict her, she'll stand up scream at you in only the way a tweeker can. It's a futile battle.

Last week, my mom showed up at my house and had my step-dad take my kids out to eat. She sat me down to have a "talk". Apparently, Courtney has been paying a lot of attention to my facebook page. And has related what she's found out about me to our mother. My mom took it all very seriously. She's very concerned about my soul. She confronted me about being a "terrorist sympathizer", "dating a nazi", all my friends having lost their minds, and how we all "worship the devil." WTF? I realized in this bizzarro-world conversation we had, that all the meanings of all the words have been changed. I remember when I was 18, everyone was well aware that I was "liberal". It just meant that I was young and naive and my heart was bleeding and my solutions to stop the bleeding were just silly and idealistic and harmless. Now that word means that I am a nazi and support al qaeda and wish to see the death of america and everyone in it. And my liberal deviance has corrupted my ability to take care of my kids. Being "liberal" makes me such a wickedly horrible mother that I would date an actual nazi and expose him to my kids. WTF??

Now, I can chock my sisters conclusions up to "she's fucking crazy and insanely ignorant, that poor poor baby" and move on with life.

But my mother... WTF????

My mother is a sharp, intelligent, classy, professional lady. She will proudly keep your balls in her purse and use them as her own. She is a female executive. She has a master's degree and is considered an expert in her field. She is flown all over the country -weekly- to inspect and consult on repairing failing hospitals. She's not an ignorant backwoods yokel. WTF????

So my point is, they've changed all the words and used them against us. I was trying to have this conversation with my extremely intelligent mother, and we were not speaking the same language. Any points I made were viewed through lens of "she listens to NPR and is therefore an enemy of the state". WTF????? I was trying to make the point that something or other she believed in was a proven lie, and googled it for her. She told me that google was a left-wing conspiracy. HOW FUCKING BRILLIANT IS THAT??? Just tell the people who are listening to your bullshit information, that the one place everyone can go to fact check you is a liberal conspiracy and that's why all hits say that what you said was less than true. You're not lying, it's a mass conspiracy. WOW!!!!

I sort of hate it when people use the word "orwellian". They sound like the assholes who use the word "kafkaesque". But holy shit, this bizzaro news cycle we're living in is just fucking orwellian. There is no other way to describe it.

I realize my family is more fucked up than most, but ...Has anyone else's family lost their minds in this brainwashing, propaganda, fuck cycle???? Has anyone else had crazy encounters with teabaggers? Did you feel like you were having the world's most sinister and bizarre semantics argument?

Say, you were in a coma.....

and you were a man in your mid 50's, and your prognosis was... grim, what (fiction)book would you want your niece to read to you?

I was going to make a poll, but the poll slot is filled and I want to get the book before tomorrow evening anyway.

So, what book is it, Videosift? Gulliver's Travels? Catcher in the Rye? Portrait of Dorian Gray? Harry Potter? Cat's Cradle? Other??? Nothing because you would want everyone to just shut up and leave you the hell alone?

Let's all ponder our mortality and share what we would like the last book we might ever hear to be. And because I'm having a brain block and can't think of any good books right now that I wouldn't blush reading to my uncle, no matter how comatose he might be.

because deep down we all knew......

that pudgy, college drop-out, radio dj's and backwoods beauty queen's weren't smart enough to come up with this on their own.

From the New Yorker:

The Kochs are longtime libertarians who believe in drastically lower personal and corporate taxes, minimal social services for the needy, and much less oversight of industry—especially environmental regulation. These views dovetail with the brothers’ corporate interests. In a study released this spring, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst’s Political Economy Research Institute named Koch Industries one of the top ten air polluters in the United States. And Greenpeace issued a report identifying the company as a “kingpin of climate science denial.” The report showed that, from 2005 to 2008, the Kochs vastly outdid ExxonMobil in giving money to organizations fighting legislation related to climate change, underwriting a huge network of foundations, think tanks, and political front groups. Indeed, the brothers have funded opposition campaigns against so many Obama Administration policies—from health-care reform to the economic-stimulus program—that, in political circles, their ideological network is known as the Kochtopus.

...... Charles Lewis, the founder of the Center for Public Integrity, a nonpartisan watchdog group, said, “The Kochs are on a whole different level. There’s no one else who has spent this much money. The sheer dimension of it is what sets them apart. They have a pattern of lawbreaking, political manipulation, and obfuscation. I’ve been in Washington since Watergate, and I’ve never seen anything like it. They are the Standard Oil of our times.”

Read the whole article, it's interesting.

he hates all you do because you love fornicating!

well, i'm on a westboro baptist church on the internets binge tonight so i shall post all of the fabulous sites i have found created by this lunatic church. i'm fascinated by these web savvy crazies!

parody music videos - god hates pop culture and fornicators!

god hates the whole fucking world - with an interactive world map and comprehensive lists of reasons that god hates every single (almost) individual country on this entire god foresaken planet!

obama is actually indeed the antichrist!

fuck pedophile priests! the whole damned heathen world is behind you on this one, sweeties -

hatemongers! - they're proud of their vile documentary and you should watch it!

WBC enters the blogosphere! -

i think there are more but i just got sleepy. perhaps i'll update it later.

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