In every conversation there are things that are said, and much more that passes below the surface un-said. I’ve been …
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Full disclosure up front: this site is not a resume. You can find my resume on linkedIn if you’re interested. If you’re googling me as part of a recruitment process or because you’re interested in me as a consultant, everything you’re looking for will be there.
For anyone who’s left, this is just a good old fashioned personal blog – a loose collection of ideas I’ve had over the years.
As for what you’ll find here, I have been involved in social justice movements for most of my life and am particularly interested in ways to make businesses more equitable and break down barriers of class, gender, race, and ability that disenfranchise people and carry tremendous opportunity costs for all involved. It is my firm belief that an equitable workplace is a more productive one and that social justice has a positive ROI. I also think a lot about parenting, being the best dad I can is my most important life goal. On a personal level, I’m interested in history, fiction, motorcycles, innovative designs, interesting and elegant code, music, home brewing, permaculture, blacksmithing, architecture, gardening, cooking, rpgs, and good conversation with intelligent people. Blog posts may address all of those or none.
I hope you enjoy what you find.
It can be hard wondering what each day will bring in this crazy world. All I know is that if I plant flowers, there’s a good chance that the new day will bring at least a little more beauty and a little less stress.
All of these are native Californian wildflowers that provide forage for our indigenous pollinators – bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds alike. Thanks to the good folks at the California Native Plant Society for their advice during the planning and planting stages.
I’ve been thinking a lot about the wave of recent laws criminalizing abortion. Despite all the memes from my liberal friends, framing the issue as men oppressing women is simply not backed up by data. 40% of female voters in america are pro-life (compared to 43% of male voters) and many of the most dedicated pro-life activists are female. That includes Kay Ivey, the Governor of Alabama who just signed one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the country.(more…)
My son was born almost 11 months ago and is just starting to walk on his own. Seeing him learn to stand on his own feet and the look of sheer glee on his face as explores his world is magical. Watching him and his big sister become more and more themselves is basically the best thing in my world. I think most parents experience something similar, having kids gives us a chance to see the world through new eyes and experience familiar things for the first time once again. (more…)
Several people have messaged me asking me for my recommendations for the upcoming election. Here’s my slate so far:
Delaine Easton for Governor. She’s the only candidate in the race who supports high speed rail + universal healthcare AND has realistic proposals to pay for them. She’s also a long time advocate for education and for kids in general, which I like.
Gayle McLaughlin for Lt. Governor. She is the former mayor of Richmond, a strong progressive and an independent, endorsed by both DSA and Our Revolution + lots of other progressive groups.
David Hildebrand (self-identified Libertarian Socialist) for Senate. He has solid positions on most of the key issues and a host of progressive endorsements.
I’m seeing good stuff about Pamela Price for Alameda County DA but haven’t done enough research to explicitly endorse her.
Jovanka Beckles is a strong candidate for State Assembly District 15 if you’re in her district.
No other candidate endorsements from me.
Prop 68 is a No – we should not be issuing Bonds to pay for Park maintenance. This is an absolutely terrible way to finance normal maintenance and unnecessarily adds to the State’s debt.
Prop 69 is a No – tying the legislature’s hands about where to spend tax revenue serves no purpose except to guarantee wasteful spending in some areas while other lower profile programs are under-funded.
Prop 70 is a hard No – this is another republican effort to cripple the legislature by requiring a 2/3 majority before spending revenues from cap and trade.
Prop 71 – No endorsement
Prop 72 is a Yes – People should be able to add rainwater capture systems without their property taxes going up. Especially in urban areas most rainwater drains directly to the ocean and is wasted. Catching and storing that water instead helps the whole State weather droughts more easily and should be encouraged.
Measure D in Oakland is also a Yes. This is a Parcel tax to fund libraries here in Oakland. Even if you never set foot in a Library they provide critical services – everything from free meeting space for community groups to internet access for low-income people to, you know, books.
I’ve been thinking about gender and culture a lot lately. Part of that is my daughter transforming practically overnight from an infant to a walking talking little person with her own ideas and opinions, part of that is the immanent arrival of her little brother, and part of it is the ongoing string of revelations around rape and sexual harassment. How can I raise my children to make sure that they are neither victims or abusers? Feminist writers have written at length about rape culture, and if you’re not already familiar with the term I would strongly recommend reading up. As I’ve thought about it over the years though I’ve become more and more convinced that the issue goes much deeper – right to the heart of culture’s like ours that normalize and glorify empire. I call it “conquest culture”. (more…)
So this last weekend my wife and I hosted a Burn’s Night dinner for a few of our friends. It was great and we’re planning to make it an annual tradition. My favorite part of the night was after dinner sitting in a circle drinking whiskey and having everyone recite their favorite poem (sometimes with a little help from google for folks who didn’t have something memorized). I used to go to poetry events all the time when I was writing and performing more regularly and didn’t realize how much I had missed it.
In any case, later that night I found myself inspired to write something new for the first time in a while. This one popped up in my head half-formed as I was tossing and turning and I just had to get out of bed and write it down, knowing it would be gone by morning if I did not.(more…)