Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Unemployment Crisis in America

Unemployment Crisis in America

May 4th 2009
After being rejected from a job that pays $18,000 / year at the women's prison, a job that pays $21,000 teaching Head Start, getting fired from Red Lobster (because apparently, I am just not Red Lobster "material" I decided to go to the Tennessee Career Center to take advantage of their high speed internet, free printer paper, and ink...

now would not be the best time to mention my senior thesis-- or my grad school major, or the fact that i spent the better part life as a volunteer and advocate for children at-risk.. working to give them hope and a second chance at life.

systematically invalidating such bogus, barnum-type feedback that one typically gets from a MBTI type of personality test that is given during high school or in college. i won't bother to mention the standardization of SAT scores to help our country feel better-- or the fact that the stanford-binet was created for military issue only.

who gives a shit anymore??? if you told a me a fat bearded lady at the circus could decide my fate and tell me what direction i should choose next-- i'd take it! and throw in a fat tip for being smart enough to know that any answer-- no matter how grim, is far better than just wandering aimlessly through life looking back on what might have been-- at THIRTY? at THIRTY-SIX???

after receiving five letters of rejection from jobs that require nothing more than a GED or a high school diploma, i decided to go to the tennessee career center hoping to find a job that will allow me to afford the most basic necessities of life. toothpaste, toilet paper, cat food... i got hooked up with a counselor that afternoon. he has two masters degrees-- one in educational career counseling, and a second in counseling psychology. could this be the guidance counselor i have been asking for since.. well... since... i was old enough to know was in need of guidance?

surely someone else must have recognized i was in need of guidance, but god knows my parents weren't paying attention, and having good genes just doesn't cut it these days. but now more than ever, i realize that having all the smarts in the world won't get you anywhere if you never learned how to apply them.

i am the exact same five year old who needed to win the spelling bee. in college, i was the one to set the curve, not just make it. the one to break the rules, and, break them i did, but there is no glory in being second best, second smartest, second brightest, or second anything.

i wish i could say that after all this time i developed other ego strengths and finally felt okay with who i am, you know.... "just being me," but i am sad to report that my "condition" (diagnosis) was amazingly accurate and predictable. just like all the doctors said! i wonder if they derive joy out of being right-- if they crack open a bottle of aged liquor in my fathers office and say, "see, we told you so. we told you their was nothing you could do." and so nothing they did.

and by doing nothing, and i do mean nothing-- the illness will just take will its course. and i am now, in fact, nothing. nothing costs nothing (at least to them) and daddy made another fine investment. on the other hand, nothing has drained every hope, fear, security-- every chance-- and every last breath from my body. i might have believed in me. but i know i'm alive because a tear just rolled down the side of my cheek. i am home.

but i still haven't learned. for some reason with all of my failures i am reminded of in so many ways... me, myself, as i watch them play out every time i shut my eyes or open them. yes- blink.

sometimes i ask myself, how did i get here? how did this happen? what happened to all of the plans i made for myself? where did they go? where did I go? constantly replayed over and over and over again in my mind. i must be F---ING CRAZY!

but at this moment, here, even as i say the words, i am not truly insane, i am merely in pain. what a tragedy that those two words rhyme-- they ruin what could have been a very profound misnomer of the human condition and the labels we hold so dear.

i am the exact same 5 year old who needed to ACE the spelling bee, set the curve, not just make it; break the rules, and, break them i did. there is no glory in being second best. second smartest, second brightest, or second anything. being second sucks. it sucks every god-damned second of the day.

and so my search for mediocrity continues and i wait for it each and every day hoping it will find me beaten and worn from the storm. all of the storms, but dammit, its still there. i still have questions those damn elyssa questions that made all my professors so proud, damn ideas, damn thoughts, damn hope.

my mother still calls me everyday to see if i went to get food stamps to feed myself, #EFF her, and her #EFF'n things. #EFF diamonds, couture, and #EFF that life. i was here mom, the whole #EFF'n time. just not pretty enough with out any surgery. not pretty at all, with all those damn scars.

i hope someone out there still loves me. i do actually believe that i deserve love and kindness despite the obvious fact that i am a royal pain in the ass. i refuse to work in burger king. for right now, at least.

so goodnight my dear friends. let's all try to have sweet dreams. pepe awaits, as does alanis, and a pack of smokes that i can already taste.

yes, what could have been, what should have been-- what MIGHT have been if you let me be


"When written in chinese, the word Crisis is composed of tvo characters: One represents danger and the other represents opportunity." -JFK

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Google Goggles: Sanity Checker by ELyssa Durant, Ed.M.

Google Goggles: Sanity Checker!

How much do I love, love, the person who created this program???

If only I had this years ago... before I buried myself in hundreds of hard copies and countless drafts waiting to be edited, checked, scanned, formatted, reviewed, merged, referenced, compared or merged with older versions of the same document.

Files upon files are waiting to be examined, edited, completed, and submitted at a later date TBA...

At least I am not the only one in need of a "sanity checker!"

Living everyday with so much unfinished business and self-doubt has stopped me dead in my tracks! Preventing me from moving forward and doing so many things that are absent from my life.

Even the most simple tasks become insurmountable obstacles when left to my own devices (usually at least 2-3 dictionaries, a thesaurus, grammar textbook, and the Chicago Manual of Style or the APA.) Ridiculous, right? Everything in my life takes at least 3x longer than the average (normal) individual. This can be anything from filing a job application, turning in graduate school applications, assignments and projects on time...


EVERYTHING is pending!

EVERYTHING is probably good enough!

EVERYTHING was probably good enough in the first time around!

Getting caught up on insignificant details such as grammar, text wrapping, format styles, has come to define my adult life and experience. Interfering with my academic, personal, and professional goals

I want a sanity checker!!!!

When you are still editing the very same article after 13 or 14 years, you have a problem.

 I have a problem!

If I can ever figure out how to use it, hopefully it will prevent me from searching through thousands of text logs and backup files....

I need a sanity checker!

Working on your um-teenth hundredth draft gets tedious. Hopefully google goggles is better at time management and will not spend too much time hovering over typos, font size and other imperfections that probably make my writing a little more human.... a few misplaced commas never hurt anyone unless they are placed after a dollar sign!

Where can I sign up for a personal the "sanity checker" to guide me through the rest of my life??? To clear a path to my desk or help me find the floor...

Thanks so much to the genius who invented this gadget! I hope it works well!

How I wish I could revert back to my days before the technological revolution. My mind has information overload. My life has information overload. My brain is full!
My cyberseeking tools and inquisitive mind have become my kryptonite. Please-- make it stop! Stop the questions, stop the memories, stop the madness!

Just, plain, stop!
I miss Professor Marks' red ink pens back in college. Long before I knew what a computer was or how to turn the damn thing on. Now there's e-mail, Internet, spyware, malware, software utilities...

Life was so much easier before I became dependent upon technology and this stupid little box I cannot seem to pull myself away from. And now, much like my racing thoughts and RAM (random access memory) and my crazy busy mind that is a near perfect reflection of my chaotic life. My paper trail reaches from one room into the next... one year to the next... one decade to the next...

Now I can't seem to turn the thing off... I can't seem to turn anything in, and I can't seem to make things just perfect enough.

Wish me luck as I uncover more and more of my past... although I have often had regrets about sending imperfect documents prematurely: either too soon, too often, or sometimes too early; surely sending something is far better than not sending anything at all...

In this life, people are never remembered for what they start-- only for what they finish.

Even The New York Times posted a peralink. :( Not fair, copyLEFT




(your welcome!)

Drunk, and Dangerous, at the KeyboardMail Goggles, a new feature on Google’s Gmail program, is intended to help stamp out a scourge that few knew existed: late-night drunken e-mailing.October 19, 2008 - By ALEX WILLIAMS - Fashion & Style

HERBALKING - Bits BlogMail Goggles, a new feature on Google’s Gmail program, is intended to help stamp out a scourge that few knew existed: late-night drunken ...

Google Inc. Mail Goggles, a new feature on Google’s Gmail program, is intended to help stamp out a scourge that few knew existed: late-night drunken e-mailing. ...

from the Blog Community ...Mail Goggles, a new feature on Google's Gmail program, is intended to help stamp out a scourge that few knew existed: latenight drunken emailing. ...



THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK. Catchy, approprite, and I even can't get letter to the editor?

 Well things are chaning.  The news is in our hands now.  So no more media manipualtion. i'm so tired of reading the crap you guys put out to distract us from he issues.... and since I get a job... i may as well, keep writing for free..

AC made a forutne off the story I posted for free...  but I haven't forgotten. 

I know my own words. and it really hurts when I can't even get a letter to the editor printed, or a response from a local journalist about when call give them a hint where to look for REAL news

So I don't give a fuck if you all go down in flames.  Power to the people.

Because they wrote me off long ago.... and you may laugh because I'm different, but I laugh because you are all the same.

$1.00 for this story..... how much did AC make? I call your bluff.  And funny thing.... I never even got the dollar.  I can't wait for that audit.  

it may some time, but you have no idea, how much I could have helped you. It was is a good story.  The economist thought so... so did USA today. you guys just can't handle the truth.

All I wanted was to get the information out, so why charge ME to download my own story only to see someone elses byline?

I am watching the watchers.... and heads, up... I'm pretty damn good at it!

#yeahisaidit and i'll say it again if i need to.

Fuck you, AC!

@ELyssaD On Amazon


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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Bringing you the best of the best from the Autism and Asperger's
support community. Hear from parents, professionals, advocates and
people with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Additional posts about health law, technology applications, research developments and education.

blogs are fully downloaded onto your Kindle so you can read them even
when you're not wirelessly connected. And unlike RSS readers which often
only provide headlines, blogs on Kindle give you full text content and
images, and are updated wirelessly throughout the day.

Product Details

  • Publisher: ELyssa Durant, Ed.M. (February 18, 2013)

  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English

5.0 out of 5 stars
Unique and insightful

This review is from: Powers That Beat (Kindle Edition)
Ms. Durant has drawn on her sterling academic background and extensive experience in health services
policy development and actual service in the field to present a
comprehensive analysis of the organ transplant situation in the United
States. She thoroughly discusses all aspects of the situation - not only
legal and medical, but also moral, social and ethical aspects and the
dilemmas faced when this topic is addressed. Ms. Durant raises
significant questions that must be addressed as organ transplants become
more commonplace in today's times. A thought provoking book that should
be read by everyone as this question touches every American. Highly

J. D. Yencharis

NASA Mission Planning & Mission Control 

When Elyssa writes something, you should read it. She is one of the
most intelligent and articulate people I have ever known. She is an
amazing researcher and really digs deep for the important facts on any
topic she focuses on. If you want to learn details about a topic and
get some cutting edge viewpoints related to it, read anything Elyssa
Durant writes.
Stuart Silverberg, Ed.D.
Columbia University

Durant has a talent for explaining complex legal issues in interesting,
accessible format. Her level of expertise on the subject matter is
impressive and comes through on every page.

Rick Silver, Esq.

Durant has drawn on her sterling academic background and extensive
experience in health services policy development and actual service in
the field to present a comprehensive analysis of the organ transplant
situation in the United States. She thoroughly discusses all aspects of
the situation - not only legal and medical, but also moral, social and
ethical aspects and the dilemmas faced when this topic is addressed.
Ms. Durant raises significant questions that must be addressed as organ
transplants become more commonplace in today's times. A thought
provoking book that should be read by everyone as this question touches
every American. Highly recommended.

Ray Harris

Advocate for People with Disablities

Durant has an amazing ability to discuss complex policy issues in easy
to understand language. She has a tremendous grasp of her topic and of
her audience. Easy to read and understand; Ms. Durant explains
difficult concepts and evolving health care law and policy issues in a
user friendly manner. A real eye opener!

Karen Baker, MSW 

just want all to know what a Hero for the Autism community Elyssa has
been for us and how much we appreciate her advocacy and intelligent
posts. AutismAid has been a dream of mine for ten years. my heart was
just about broken when others took advantage of us. I know that in the
end we meet people who we connect with and do the right thing. The 13
Service non profits under the AutismAid Umbrella and many others are in
the fight for their life in this economy and environment. This Web and
viral traffic is great. Thank you providing the support, documentation
and logistics are needed to make the event happen.

Tim Welsh, Executive Director


Saturday, June 1, 2013

Comcast and Verizon Phony Free-Speech Claims

Comcast and Verizon’s Phony Free-Speech Claim

May 29th 2013 5:00 PM

Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit wrote this week that the First Amendment shields Comcast Corp. from Congress’s authority to ensure the free flow of information across the basic network connections it provides.

Kavanaugh’s assertion accompanied a ruling by the three-judge panel that reversed a Federal Communications Commission action against Comcast. Although the other two judges on the court did not endorse Kavanaugh’s First Amendment argument, it will come up again later this year -- in a case brought against the FCC by Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ)

The court should resist this reasoning, or risk trivializing the freedom of speech that the First Amendment truly protects.

This week’s case, Comcast Corp. (CMCSA)v. FCC, concerned the 1992 Cable Act, enacted at a time when policy makers rightly worried that cable operators would favor the channels that they increasingly controlled. The statute directed the FCC to prevent cable companies from discriminating among programming providers if the effect of such discrimination is to “unreasonably restrain the ability of an unaffiliated video programming vendor to compete fairly.”

Comcast is both the largest high-speedInternet-access provider and the biggest American video distributor, and faces little competition within its territories for the wires it installs in American homes. At the same time, it owns a controlling interest in Golf Channel and NBC Sports Network, which Comcast distributes as part of its most popular “Expanded Basic” and “Digital Starter” bundles. Meanwhile, the company relegates Tennis Channel, a competitor, to its far-less-popular “Sports Tier,” which focuses on sports programming and requires subscribers to pay additional fees.

Other cable distributors mimic Comcast’s treatment of Tennis Channel, which claims that this prevents it from reaching the 40 million-subscriber threshold required to attract national advertising. The FCC agreed last year that Comcast’s activities amounted to unlawful discrimination.

Free Speech

In its appeal of the FCC’s ruling, Comcast wrapped itself in the mantle of the First Amendment, claiming that it is a speaker akin to the New York Times. The FCC’s order that Comcast carry specific content to a specific audience amounted to an unconstitutional intrusion, the company said. In his concurring opinion this week, Judge Kavanaugh was strongly sympathetic to this claim, saying “the FCC cannot tell Comcast how to exercise its editorial discretion about what networks to carry any more than the Government can tell Amazon or Politics and Prose or Barnes & Noble what books to sell; or tell the Wall Street Journal or Politico or the Drudge Report what columns to carry.”

Congress, though, has long distinguished basic information transmission facilities from newspapers; there is a sharp difference between a facility that allows someone else’s speech to be transmitted, and expression itself. Indeed, all of American communications policy is based on this premise.

In enacting the 1992 Cable Act, Congress was concerned that the operator of the single wire into a home would have the power and incentive to pick and choose among sources of speech and thereby constrain Americans’ access to information. No one watching a particular channel would think that Comcast, by virtue of transmitting it, was “speaking.” And even if Comcast is, in some blunt way, “speaking” through its choice of channels, the rules against discrimination aren’t meant to further the “message” of Tennis Channel. The government just wants fair competition.

In a separate case before the same court, Verizon is making a similar claim. According to the company, an FCC rule that keeps an Internet-access network provider from blocking its customers’ access to any content violates its First Amendment right to control the speech it transmits. The rule amounts to compelled speech, and is thus as unconstitutional as a law ordering a newspaper what to publish. Verizon claims the right to edit the Internet with absolute discretion.

Closed Market

Hundreds of millions of Americans entrust giant, private digital-network providers with their First Amendment-protected speech. These providers -- principally Comcast and Time Warner Cable Inc. over wires, and Verizon and AT&T Inc. (T) in wireless -- have acted in parallel to exclude competition in their individual geographic and product marketplaces. At this point, it would be extraordinarily difficult for any new entrant to achieve the scale it would take to cut into the incumbents’ profits.

As a result, the country that invented the Internet is lagging behind other nations; only people in MexicoIsraelChileNew Zealandand Greece pay more than Americans for each megabit per second of Internet access, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Now, the same companies are claiming First Amendment immunity from any congressional oversight. Other enormous industries have seen the appeal of this argument: Last year, the pharmaceutical industry successfully argued that the First Amendment shielded it from prosecution for promoting off-label use of a drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

For the Internet-access providers, this implausible argument must not stand: If business decisions were constitutionally protected speech, every government regulation would be presumptively unconstitutional. Surely the First Amendment wasn’t intended to be used as a shield to protect power in the marketplace.

(Susan Crawford, a contributor to Bloomberg View and a professor at the Cardozo School of Law, is the author of “Captive Audience: The Telecom Industry and Monopoly Power in the New Gilded Age.” The opinions expressed are her own.)

To contact the writer of this article: Susan P. Crawford at or@scrawford on Twitter