Monday, November 30, 2009
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Motivation comes from the oddest places. I've been feeling the Start Snitching itch more and more lately and then I see the above photo and so many things I've been reading just all came together and yet, I'm still not entirely sure what to make of this picture.
This was published in the September issue of Glamour, hit Gawker and then the rest of the internet went wild with it.
Caveat #1: This picture is oddly angled and only a skeleton wouldn't show any kind of gut in that position.
Caveat #2: I think it's a refreshing to have these images out there, competing for mindshare, even if it wasn't a cover shot.
With that said,
It seems like the whole argument of personal health, has been reduced to this false dichotomy, much like the health care "debate" in this country. It's an Us Vs Them battle where being unhealthy is an act of defiance to the health nuts and hippie vegans who want to steal your cheesecake (PETA again misses the fucking point.)
Partly because of people with their approach, there is literally a Fat Acceptance Movement.
There are seemingly only two sides to this coin, you can airbrush the reality out of every woman in media and deify images of hungry chicks with body dysmorphic disorder or you can start the creep, where the meanings of overweight and obesity get redefined and expanded to accommodate the increasing average and reflect "reality."
I feel a little dirty linking to Maxim, but this 7 Stages of Fat sort of captures the "Wall-E" style progression we're on.
America is somewhere on Stage 5: Sporty Fat.
There has to be some sort of 3rd option that doesn't involve me counting Angelina Jolie's ribs or pretending that Mo'Nique is sexy because she's confident and happy while wearing a shirt that says "Fat Gurl." (Celebrating Ebonics and Obesity in two words, quite an achievement...)
Seriously though, this attitude is part of the problem. Too many dudes use the term "thick" (Pause no Uncle Ruckus/Clarence Thomas) as a compliment that has gone beyond definition and too many chicks take this overused term as a sign of achievement (ahem, black community, cough cough.)
Let's delve further, in July 2009 a report came out stating that blacks have the highest obesity rate in the country for three reasons, one, acceptance of obesity, two, less physical activity and three, a 25790:1 McDonald's:Trader Joes ratio in the hood.
There is not a damn thing wrong with trying to be thick like Beyonce. In fact I encourage it, but look very carefully at the type of thick Beyonce is. She can probably do more situps than me when I was playing 3 sports and still maintains her curves.
This is larger than the black community though, this attitude ties directly into this seemingly unique American attitude of having no remorse for ones actions or the ability to assess those actions honestly and make changes.
It's ok to say, maybe I should get a few runs in a week and cut out some fat out the diet.
In this health care debacle plaguing the country, what would happen if Obama said a big way to rein in costs would be healthier eating and exercise?
There'd be town halls with people crying ZOMG Eugenics, socialized arugula! Keep your Muslin, yes MusliN hands off my Apple pie!
Chris Matthews would have a five night special on if Obama really understands middle America or is just a coastal elite and Glenn Beck would eat the entire contents of the "This Is Why You're Fat" blog to show Obama this is still our country!
Fuck your treadmill and your granola bar! America Fuck Yeah!
My trademarked Start Snitching hyperbole is not even that far-fetched anymore...
When all forms of cancer, a largely uncontrollable corruption of your own body, is less of a strain on the health care system than obesity, a largely controllable corruption, things have gone seriously awry.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 3:26 AM
Sunday, August 23, 2009
It's a little overwhelming to summarize a decade, especially one in which my musical tastes changed so much and when it seemed like my hard drive crashed every freaking semester.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 11:59 PM
Thursday, April 16, 2009
I mainly ignore it now, however one column caught my eye for it's particularly brand of inanity and actually got me to read it.
Titled, "How to solve the pirate problem" the column featured a particularly noxious brand of knuckle dragging conservatism that combined with a larger confluence of GOP ignorance throughout the week, leads me to believe we have entered into a defacto one party rule.
When the voice of a mainstream conservative publication says,
"What remains to be seen is whether this problem was solved despite Obama’s instincts or because of them. The SEALs solved a hostage crisis by shooting three pirates. The question is whether Obama will prevent a pirate crisis from emerging by making it easier to shoot even more pirates."
It's a wrap.
As a country with severe ego damage from nearly a decade of fighting brown people without the ability to declare victory, Americans were thrilled that our Seals could pop off three shots and end an international crisis between the commercial breaks of American Idol.
However the problem of piracy is not that simple and like most things, cannot be solved by shooting it in the face over and over. Somalians don't become pirates because they like watching Johnny Depp twist out Kiera Knightly.
I'm going to take a guess and say that piracy has something to do with Somalia being a failed state and their inability to provide their citizens with the basic protections and opportunities that the anti-government/anti-stimulus/anti-social net GOP seem bent on eradicating in the U.S.Also, a third war of the naval variety in another Muslim country probably wouldn't be the best idea.
Killing everyone cannot be your long-term strategy. Republicans, barring some MAJOR Democratic gaffe are finished as a political force. Demographically, sociologically, economically, they're a wrap.
A NYT article about Glenn Beck said,
The conservative writer David Frum said Mr. Beck’s success “is a product of the collapse of conservatism as an organized political force, and the rise of conservatism as an alienated cultural sensibility.”
“It’s a show for people who feel they belong to an embattled minority that is disenfranchised and cut off,” he said.
And this is a conservative saying that his party is just a mentality that angry people share. This is particularly sad when you realize that this upcoming decade is pretty crucial and deserves serious deliberation but you have Republicans that release alternative budget proposals without any numbers the chance for serious dialogue is already over.
What can you expect when a key conservative like Clarence Thomas says that.
“Today there is much focus on our rights,” Justice Thomas said. “Indeed, I think there is a proliferation of rights.”
Because that's what this decade has been defined by, the proliferation of rights by Americans. Fuck you, Clarence Thomas.
How else do you account for the rabid reaction of the GOP when the DHS releases a report saying what basic sociology has said for decades? Veterans who do not assimilate back into society upon return, can lash out in dangerous ways. I guess it's insulting to acknowledge the trauma of war.
The fact that so many Republicans are so offended by the fact that right-wing extremism is a growing threat to America shows their inability to distinguish between extremism and mainstream political thought as well as their inability to read. The DHS also released a report outlining the future of left-wing extremism as well.
They do know that right?
Slate broke down what exactly April means in American history and it's pretty grim. VT, Columbine, Waco and even the recent Poplawski police shooting incident all took place in April. The facts kind of show that most of the attacks are of right wing origin. What do you expect when you tell people to rise against the government and to store up on guns?
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 1:44 PM
Tuesday, April 07, 2009
It's clear from this video that he has lost all drive, talent, wit and satirical relevance. Here is he making references to events that at their most recent ended a year ago.
Who gets excited when they here this?
Who does it amuse to hear the infiniteth Britney/Winehouse joke?
Or to watch a listless bloated steroid-added Dr. Dre play the foil to Eminem?
Oh and there's a Rainman joke in there too.
What's even worse is the precedent Eminem has set. We are all now subjected to a string as Asher Roth's that everyone in the industry is in a rush to co-sign because they want to claim they supported him before he sells 2.3 millions CDs to frat houses all around the country. But instead of coming from a place of comity with the black experience, as Eminem has tried to do with his background and all, rappers like Asher Roth come straight from the frat house and revel in their awesomeness. It is more than grating.
But I can't really add more to the Asher bashing than what Pitchfork has thankfully already done.
Here's what I'm trying to figure out.
Do I hate Eminem because I am no longer in high school where even then, I had to take this humor in small doses?
Or is he doing what he's always done?
I ask this because I don't have the constitution to go back and play his old records. Paul Wall will satisfy all of my white rap needs. Hell, Weird Al spits harder than this.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 7:03 PM
Monday, April 06, 2009
(Yo sit back, relax, sipping Coganc's...)
I almost missed this story, but universities have started moving away from need-blind admissions process. It makes perfect sense when you consider the beating university endowments took in the market, but it doesn't make the social implications any less sinister.
What this means is they want rich kids who won't apply for financial aid. Can you guess what racial category these students will overwhelmingly fall into? European notions of free college and health cares are starting to look pretty good huh?
It is pretty disheartening to think of the private elite universities becoming even more insular, white and upper income. Actually it's pretty fucking sickening.
- Some admissions officers and college advisers say richer parents are taking note of the climate, calculating that if they do not apply for aid, their children stand a better chance of getting in.
“They think their kids will have more options,” said Diane Geller, a college counselor in private practice in Los Angeles and president of the Independent Educational Consultants Association, a nonprofit group that represents private academic counselors. “And anecdotally, it would seem that that’s the case.”
At the social experiment I obtained my B.A. from, A.K.A. the University of Michigan during the affirmative action trials, there were mixed signals as to how effective affirmative action is a tool of racial inclusion, but at least the effort was there.
However that effort is over now that many schools have started scaling back on affirmative action due to a series of unfortunate state ballots that repealed race-based considerations as reverse discrimination.
It is triply damaging when you read up on the failures of HBCU's who now have white valedictorians.
- An Associated Press analysis of government data on the 83 federally designated four-year HBCUs shows just 37 percent of their black students finish a degree within six years. That's 4 percentage points lower than the national college graduation rate for black students...
...At 38 HBCUs, fewer than one in four men who started in 2001 had completed a bachelor's degree by 2007, the data show. At Texas Southern, Voorhees, Edward Waters and Miles College, the figure was under 10 percent.
As our Repression, (Depression + Rewecession) as I like to call it, snakes its way through all aspects of American life many social advances of the last few decades will be reversed quicker than anyone can have imagined.
It's a good thing Obama ended race in America. Although under these new admissions policies he might not have made it into the Ivy's that so proudly rep him.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 1:05 AM
Thursday, March 12, 2009
However, we have the first shot fired as Charles Freeman withdrew his name from an intelligence position.
Because of the Jews! (NYT article, the comments are better than the article)
Superior Wash Po take here.
Alternet.org's version is the best I think. (Yea, I read about half a dozen takes on this story. So what?)
I still can't act like I'm well versed in this particular situation, but it seems very incredible that Charles Freeman was nominated to any administration position considering his frankness when discussing Israel.
"Israel is driving itself toward a cliff, and it is irresponsible not to question Israeli policy and to decide what is best for the American people."
Wow. Common sense can be truly radical. How dare we, as Americans, wonder what actions will create the best long-term results for... America and not Israel. The myopia is blinding. As one commenter said,
"Perhaps the (NYT) article could have pointed out that Mr. Rosen, whose blog initiated the attack on Freeman, is currently indicted on espionage charges and due to stand trial. Steve Rosen along with Keith Weissman are charged with providing Israel with classified US documents.
And Chuck Schumer is definitely on my shitlist.
But when U.S. Representative Israel (I swear that's a real Jewish congressman in NY) calls up Rahm Emanuel along with the Zionist Organization of America (real group) and says get this guy out of the running, America has a bit of a problem.
I would like to start the Black Power/Africa First/ Ali Boom Ba Yay! Lobby or maybe the Trini to the Bone Lobby group and see how patriotic it is for the U.S. to support my country's interests over their own. Or what calls Senator Schumer make on my behalf.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 11:48 PM
Saturday, March 07, 2009
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
I missed most of 2008 but I'll catch up on January and February 2009, and aim to keep up going forward.
As always, feel free to nominate the Snitches who deserve the props.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 2:29 PM
Tuesday, March 03, 2009
Or maybe he smelled bullshit on a police shooting and decided to embarrass at least three institutions at the same time.
Read the Washington Post article here.
It's pretty incredible.
(Did I mention that I also took a train with DS (as I call him) from Columbia University to Penn Station?
Yea, I'm cool like that.)
He touches on so many of themes (bloated police bureaucracy, community/police disconnect, failure of the media) that made The Wire so powerful and vital.
Clearly the media is at fault here. I'm far from an expert on this but the most immediate problem is that the profit margin expectations are too high on newspapers.
They need to be privatized by angel investors who can accept a 2% return or just be happy with breaking even.
This is a much better approach than constant staff cuts to reduce costs to increase profits and pump the stock price.
Otherwise these important and even the not so seemingly important stories will continue to slip through the cracks. At least we have TMZ to do our serious reporting.
Joking... I think.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 1:53 AM
Sunday, March 01, 2009
Below is a Microsoft nerd fest of what they expect to happen in the next 10 years.
More than anything I am a technology lover and advocate. So watching videos like the above give me a little bit of an orgasm, regardless of whether Microsoft is the company that will usher in this new wave of tech or not.
Thinking about the next 10 years of tech and where we have come from since 1999 and the scritch scratch of AOL dial-up and their ubiquitous installation discs is pretty overwhelming.
We already live in an age where computers can access detailed 3D imagery of the entire earth and ocean, replace your television via the internet and help you stalk your exes from as far back as elementary school.
What will the iPhone be like in 10 years?
What will video game tech or even computing in general be capable of?
Or will we be fighting Chinese robot police for scraps of food in our post economic collapse in a sort of I Am Legend/Mad Max future dystopia?
But then things like reality have to go and fuck shit up for me. Who will really get to use these technologies? Will they improve society or just make life easier for those whose lives are already pretty easy?
I mean, what's the point of an awesome touch screen medical diagnosis device when over 50 million people in the country will be uninsured by 2019.
Which leads me to this NYT article about upper class white people who are now "poor."
The article discusses people who had 6 digit salary careers who now have $12/hr jobs.
These articles are pretty amusing to me. I don't know if it's wrong or not but it's hard for me to feel sorry for these people. Granted, these people aren't necessarily RICH or the most deserving targets of my ire but the tone of the article does nothing for me. Is it more saddening or worthy of sympathy for a person to lose their $100K job and health insurance than a person who never had health care in their life.
And if you read the NYT comments, many people are saying "Join the fucking club."
If you like that article then peep this video about "poor" white people in South Africa and please let me know if you shook your head throughout.
Maybe it's the Obama effect or maybe its the fact the white people are becoming more displaced as minority population growth outpaces white pop. growth or maybe our Depression 2.0 will show a large part of the mid to upper crust what life is like for the rest.
For whatever it's you can expect to hear a lot more of these stories.
Meanwhile I'll be daydreaming about my auto updating touchscreen holographic newspaper.
Posted by Hussain Rahim at 10:31 PM