U.S. Forgiving Massive Sum of Student Debt


Student debt has grown into a debilitating, massive anchor on graduates as higher education costs have skyrocketed and help in alleviating the debt burden has become more difficult for some and non-existent for others.

Student Debt Free?
Student Debt Free?

This is absolutely great news for the country. If we want the nation to prosper and continue to prosper, we need to secure the well-being of the livelihoods of the coming generations.

Higher education was always supposed to be a road OUT of poverty, but today it has become a social standard that shackles young people into tens/hundreds of thousands of dollars of otherwise unforgivable debt because they were raised their entire lives believing that they HAVE to go to college or they will be lesser people if they don’t. I work a blue collar job (e.g. a job that won’t be outsources or automated any time soon), yet we are always looked down upon by society as mindless, stupid, uneducated and uncultured hicks who aren’t smart enough to do “real work”. Knowledge and education should be a right to all people, not a privilege for the wealthy. For crying out loud, this is supposed to be the 21st century, right? The age in which automation and technology makes all of our lives wonderful.


SEE MORE: http://secondnexus.com/…


Google, democracy and the truth about search

In a democracy, yes even a democratic republic, it is imperative that the people have access to truthful, unbiased, facts and information. Propaganda creates a divisive environment and clouds the people’s judgement. If the resources we depend on to get good information fail us then what are we to do when the time comes to cast our votes or function as participating citizens in our society. How are we to bring about meaningful change for ourselves and our future generations? If the bonds of trust are to break down on us then the fabric of our civilization can’t be too far behind I fear.
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/dec/04/google-democracy-truth-internet-search-facebook?CMP=fb_gu

This is a very interesting article which I have some thoughts on I might share later when I get them better organized in my head but I, too, have noticed more and more that it appears someone is gaming the system when it comes to internet search. We should all be vigilant in vetting out reliability of sources as best we can. People are rewriting history to suit their own agendas all the time and other people who are already biased in one direction or another are lapping these manufactured realities up.

Change the way you look at things. Democracy matters!
Change the way you look at things. Democracy matters!

What’s Going On With DFW Pagan Pride Day?

As the year progresses and people are looking forward to September and October while many of us hope for cooler temperatures folks are thinking and wondering once again about Pagan Pride Day and because I have, in the past, served as a volunteer and one year as a Co-Coordinator of the event a few are asking if I know anything about it.

I asked Philosophy Cat what is up with DFW Pagan Pride Day but he doesn't know either.
I asked Philosophy Cat what is up with DFW Pagan Pride Day but he doesn’t know either.

Unfortunately, the answer is that I do not. Since I departed from the planning committee following the 2014 DFW Pagan Pride Day event I haven’t been in touch with the Local Coordinator or the Regional Coordinator for Pagan Pride Day. according to the international Pagan Pride Project page the Regional Coordinator for this area is still Virginia Darkelf as she was when I was serving on the volunteer staff for DFW Pagan Pride Day in 2013 and 2014. An email link is provided there for her. Perhaps she can answer folks’ questions about DFW PPD. I don’t see a listing at the page there for a Local Coordinator but as recently as last year it was Mr. Bryan Lankford. Whether he still holds the position or if it is open I do not know. As I said, I haven’t kept in touch with him so he would be the person to ask about his status with Pagan Pride Project. I do know that last year he posted the following to the DFW Pagan Pride Day Facebook Page:

Three years ago when I became the Local Coordinator of PPD I knew I was going to have several years of being really busy on the horizon. My plan was to get a good team together so everyone knew their job and could function without me needing to supervise. I succeeded in getting a great team together but unfortunately the year that I got too busy to devote a lot of time to PPD so did the rest of the team. This year I am working on my master’s degree, fostering three boys, working with two soccer teams and two Boy Scout Troops as well as now being Lead Teacher for my school and still performing magic shows. I have postponed making this announcement because I kept hoping I could squeeze in time to get PPD together but it’s really apparent that that’s not going to happen at this time. I really wanted to continue our run of successful PPD events and there were several people who volunteered to help, which I appreciate. However, I can’t devote the time to training new people this year so I’m sorry but we are going to have to call it for this year. We might be able to get something together next year if life slows down a bit. I will miss the event this year but I just don’t have the time to put it together.

Bryan

He and I have both been very busy pursuing our own lives and taking care of things we need to do and neither he nor I have made an effort to stay in touch with one another so other than what has been posted publicly I am just as in the dark as any of you on the matter. My tradition was asked to host a ritual at the alternative event DFW Pagan Unity fest last year and this year which was put together by a team of local volunteers spearheaded by Becca Shugart. I think part of her reason for holding Pagan Unity Fest in the spring this year was specifically not to draw the attendance away from Pagan Pride Day in case it happened this year.

The DFW Pagan Pride Day website is still up at http://dfwpaganpride.org/.  I know because I pay the hosting fees and domain renewal to keep it there. I set that up in 2013 while I was the Promotional Coordinator for the event and I stated when I departed that I had no problem with continuing to host the website and offer any technical assistance needed by anyone who would be taking over the running and promotion of DFW Pagan Pride Day. It doesn’t cost me much to keep it online and I have no problem doing it. If anyone who is officially with Pagan Pride Project would like for me to do anything with the website I would be happy to do so but so far no one has asked me to update any information on the page, transfer the domain elsewhere or anything along those lines so it sits pretty much as it did at the end of DFW Pagan Pride Day 2014.

I have no problem working with anyone who has a desire to put on a DFW Pagan Pride Day event. Admittedly, like anyone else, there are people who I like personally better than others. But I am willing to set aside any differences for the better of the community and work with whoever may take up the ball and run with it. I am still too busy to be a Local Coordinator or anything as demanding as that but, maybe next year? We will see.

Dead Silent Protest – Enjoy The Silence


Last post until Sunday. See y’all then!

Details

On Saturday, July 16, we will be Dead Silent on social media including Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat, Instagram and all other outlets.This is a 24 hour Dead Silent Protest against division, hatred, racism, violence, and vengeance in our nation, and the rampant negativity promoted via social media. It is one day to publicly declare that we will stand in unity, praying for our nation and its leaders, promoting peace, compassion, respect and dignity for all people.IMPORTANT**IMPORTANT**IMPORTANTIt is essential for participants to understand that this event was birthed from my frustration over the events in Baton Rouge, Minnesota, and Dallas. The event is NOT affiliated with any other group or event. We are not anti-police or pro ANY one group of people. We are FOR unity of ALL peopleDo not post memes, statuses or comments to this event page that do not reflect the heart of this protest which is to pray for unity, compassion, respect, and peace with all people and fight against hate, racism in any direction, vengeance and violence.

Any post not reflecting the heart of the‪#‎DeadSilentProtest‬ will be deleted.

The more who engage in this Dead Silent Protest, the louder we will be. Please join us and promote this protest by sharing on your wall and tag:
‪#‎DeadSilentProtest‬ ‪#‎United‬ 

https://www.facebook.com/events/588984011279383
Enjoy the silence.
Enjoy the silence.

Thoughts On Current Events – Racism

Humanity is an ocean.
Humanity is an ocean.

The following is a guest post from a friend who wishes to remain anonymous. 

Let me start by staying any and all senseless death is a terrible tragedy, and I’m deeply sorry of anyone unjustly killed, whether they are black or white, police or civilian.

Yesterday my son woke up and crawled into my bed. He proceeded to tell me about his dreams from the night before. I was smiling as I looked at the light in his eyes and the dimples on his cheeks, when he said “Mom, someday I’m going to be twenty.” I grinned and said yes you will baby. After he finished talking I started thinking about what kind of man he would grow to be. Would he be kind, thoughtful, and strong? What kind of challenges would he have faced on his path? While I was running different scenarios in my head I realized there wasn’t a single one that caused me to fear for his life. I never had to worry that one day he would be shot down while playing in the park. I never had to worry that his applications would be thrown away when they saw his name. I never had to worry that who he was would keep him from opportunities.  It isn’t realized when people speak about racism and white privilege these are the types of problems they’re trying to shine light on. Just because there aren’t nearly as many people openly saying racial slurs doesn’t mean the systemically racist culture has died. The problem is, how do we solve this problem and try to help heal its wounds? One side of the argument gets highly offended when you bring it up. They insist that the problem isn’t significant, or that it’s going away on its own. I can see why that would be the natural defense mechanism. It’s hard to look at history of how minorities have been treated knowing it was your ancestors hurting people. We generally have pride and love for where we came from and it can feel as if admitting the past still affects the present and future, it almost vilifies our past. Also, when you acknowledge systemic racism I can give a panicky, guilty feeling of what do we do now? It’s intimidating to admit that there have been many years of injustice and many don’t think it’s fair that they should have to shoulder that. They feel like they are being attacked for thing they don’t feel are there fault.

So how do we find a way to give justice to those who have been the victim of systemic racism and oppression without making people feel like they have to carry the full burden of the problems they don’t feel they’ve created?

Richard Greene Linear Park

A linear park is a park in an urban or suburban setting that is substantially longer than it is wide. They are also often described as greenways and provide safe passage through busy cities for migrating wildlife.

Troy Cianaodh Óg Young Handfasting At Caelum Moor

UPDATE! THIS ISSUE HAS BEEN RESOLVED. I received the following letter back from the city:

Dear Concerned Citizen,

RE: 1068372 – The waterfall sculpture in Holtz Pond, Morna Linn, has no waterfall nor lights any longer. We miss them. Please repair this feature.
AT: Richard Greene Linear Park

Your concern for Park Maintenance has been resolved.

Thank you!

 

Richard Greene Linear Park in Arlington has been the home of Caelum Moor since 2009, when it was rescued from languishing in a water treatment facility since  the late nineteen nineties. It has been a favorite place of mine and several of my closest friends and family ever since as the beautiful setting in the middle of the bustling city of Arlington allows one to unwind and take a step back into another time and place. When the Norm Hines sculpture, made up of five individual groups of stones, each with its own Celtic name within a landscaped setting first reappeared to the public eye at this location. Morna Linn, the waterfall sculpture in Holtz Pond was lit up at night and was a wonderful place to sit and enjoy the site and sound of the running water as the sun dipped under the horizon and the cool night began to take hold. Unfortunately, neither the waterfall nor the lights at Morna Linn have been working the past few times we’ve visited this wonderful place. I am told that it’s possible that the city’s Parks and Recreations department might not be aware of the problem but if enough people submit an action request then perhaps our beloved structure will get the care it deserves. I’ve submitted my action request. Would you like to help get the wheel squeaking so it can get some TLC?

Here’s the link: https://carf.arlingtontx.gov/web/actionrequest/park?reset=true

Daily Roundup – Vote Your Conscience

I found this statement on a Libertarian Party meme but it’s true no matter which party your candidate of choice may come from. Let your conscience be your guide, whether that leads you down a democratic path, a republican path, a green path, a libertarian, independent or whatever. When it comes to your vote, vote your conscience, not someone else’s politics. If more people would do that the easily manipulated system we currently have would get a real wake up call. Stop being sheeple!

Vote your conscience!
Vote your conscience!

Yes, this is pretty much my take on the whole ridiculous bathroom brouhaha.

Whatever, just wash your hands.
Whatever, just wash your hands.

Robin Hardy, English author and film director best known for bringing us the classic 1973 suspense horror film The Wicker Man died this past Freyja’s Day at the age of 86. His original film was always a favorite of mine as, despite the gruesome ending, it did depict some actual, ancient pagan practices from ancestral Celtic traditions in a factual way. Granted with a bit of a twist to fit the direction the story was going in. I saw that The Witches Voice used this picture as their cover photo yesterday and I liked it so much that I followed suit.

Wicker Man
Wicker Man

Well, I do runes but yeah, basically the same idea…

Called the fuck out by a deck of cards...
Called the fuck out by a deck of cards…

 

Cut it out Zeus! LMAO,

 

Zeus did it!
Zeus did it!

Some days you will be the light for others and some days you will need some light from them. As long as there is light there is hope.

Share the light!
Share the light!

This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine… 😉

Oh How I Dreamed · Wendy Rule

Daily Roundup – Science Bitches

“Science has not yet taught us if madness is or is not the sublimity of the intelligence.” – Edgar Allan Poe

“The art and science of asking questions is the source of all knowledge.” – Thomas Berger
“Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.” – Immanuel Kant

Backed By Science?

Some supplements have scientific research to back up their health claims, others not so much. I Fucking Love Science has shared this infographic to help determine which are which…

Science!
Science!

http://www.iflscience.com/health-and-medicine/see-which-health-supplements-arent-backed-by-science/

Neil Gaiman Delves Deep Into Norse Myths for New Book

http://mobile.nytimes.ycom/2016/06/30/books/neil-gaiman-delves-deep-into-norse-myths-for-new-book.html

I have several UU friends and hopefully they’ll get as big of a chuckle out of this t-shirt as I did. Haha!

Funny Unitarian Universalist Shirt.
Your guess is as good as mine.

By the way; someone asked where you could buy one of these so I went looking and found this:

http://www.zazzle.com/im_a_unitarian_universalist_tee_shirt-235851664676261250

So, there’s that. 🙂

“Diana” by Viona Ielegems

http://www.viona-ielegems.com/portfolio/#107-portfolio/1807

“Brother,” Artemis chided. “You do not help my Hunters. You do not look at, talk to, or flirt with my Hunters. And you do not call them sweetheart.”
― Rick Riordan, The Titan’s Curse

“Little sister!” Apollo called. If his teeth were any whiter he could’ve blinded us without the sun car. “What’s up? You never call. You never write. I was getting worried!”
Artemis sighed. “I’m fine, Apollo. And I am not your little sister.”
“Hey, I was born first.”
“We’re twins! How many millennia do we have to argue—”
― Rick Riordan, The Titan’s Curse

Not sure if he’s speaking Gaelic or just drunk. Bahahahaha!

Do what you can with what you have where you are at…

I’m sure some people are probably sick of me sharing Omnia’s ‘Pagan Folk Lore’ video but I just love it. I’m especially intrigued with their take on Edgar Allen Poe’s ‘The Raven’.

Daily Roundup – Green Album Luck

I’m going to start sharing a collection of things I run across each day on the internet that I find cool, interesting, thought provoking, newsworthy or maybe scary. I hope you enjoy…

Green Album - Rainforest Trust Hero
Green Album – Rainforest Trust Hero

Behold the awesomeness that is this! Sales of The Green Album (I bought my copy. Did you buy yours?), which debuted at Caldera Fest this past May have saved 1,817 acres of rainforest at the Balanga Forest Reserve in the Congo. Let’s all keep doing our part to save pieces of this planet for nature to thrive so future generations from whom we borrow this land can have an opportunity to enjoy unspoiled spaces.

http://www.thegreenalbum.net/

Roman Fortuna

Greek Tyche

Blindfolded Goddess of Luck

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fortuna

This post is brought to you by Connor…and his mom who proudly wears his name. 💚
With thanks to Ogham Art.

When a spirit gives you a gift, even if it’s just a voice, take it with gratitude, for it might be the only thing they have to give, and they chose to give it to you. Hmmmm. Worth thinking about. Thanks San Jose Paranormal.

That’s it for today. Stay tuned for more tomorrow or perhaps sooner if I come up with something else to jabber about.

Hail and Farewell!

Cry Freedom by Gaia Consort

Tiny’s Pagan Song Legacy. Some Thoughts.

Tiny - A Great Man!
Tiny – A Great Man!

I was recently added to a group on Facebook by a friend who is helping to put together a collection of Pagan songs for a great man who has been a wonderful force of good in our community. For those who have not heard the news this is what Cheryl Wykyd posted:

For those who do not know, Tiny is in the hospital and will likely be passing the veil in the coming days/weeks. I hope you aren’t finding out from this note but if you didn’t already know, at least this group will make more sense.

Tiny asked me to help coordinate this. I don’t want to step on any toes so if anyone else already has this started, please let me know. Add anyone you think would like to be a part of it. And as far as I’m concerned, all of our issues with one another must be put aside for this project.

Cheryl has also said:

Tiny has asked me to help coordinate a sing-fest. As you know, he wants all the songs put into a book and to sit in a chair and hear many voices sing. He told me he’s spoken with *names edited out for privacy*, and has asked that I get together with all of you and “others I can’t think quick enough to name” to pull this all together and make this happen. I have all the notes from my conversation with him. I’m just putting this group here so we can talk about it. I’m not trying to take over anything that has already been done… Just doing as I’ve promised… So if the ball is already rolling, I’ll close this group. If not, can we start making plans and coordinating here? (I can’t add *name edited out for privacy* so feel free to do so if you can)

 

I first met Tiny shortly after the last time Council of the Magickal Arts held it’s final event at Recreation Plantation (the first C.M.A. event I had ever attended) and work was just beginning on the land which would eventually become known as Spirit Haven. My wife at the time and I went to some of the first work weekends there and, although we didn’t know many folks, we were very warmly welcomed by Tiny and all of the people at Land Crew camp where we were invited to come camp with them at the first festival held on the new land. I remember his good natured humor and infectious laughter most of all. He loved to sit around the fire and tell stories, sing songs and share in the connectedness of the tribe.

I haven’t seen him in many years. I stopped making the long journey down to that part of Texas shortly after my youngest was born because gas became too expensive, (around 2008 when it first crossed the $4 per gallon mark), the cost of the festivals also became rather pricey for me and I had my doubts about the dependability of the vehicles I had at the time. Add to those things, the rigors of supporting a family and the rather ugly politics that were also taking place during that time period within the community and it just didn’t seem very feasible to continue as I had been. Maybe, soon, that will change though. We’ll see. Still, I fondly remember this great man, Tiny and how he welcomed and treated everyone like family. If you are able to help by contributing songs, stories, or funds, please feel free to do so. Let me know that you would like to be added to the Closed Facebook Group Tiny’s Pagan Song Legacy where there are links to do so and I will add you. Sorry, but if I post the links here I’m afraid the spam bots will show up and clutter the documents, etc.