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Watercooler: Democracy Now on #Sandy

6:15 pm in Watercooler by Kit OConnell

Stay dry, y’all.

So much of today’s Democracy Now! program on Hurricane Sandy lines up with today’s myFDL articles that I had to share it as a closer to today’s coverage — nuclear power, climate change denial, human survival, and the crucial need to halt our damage to the environment and change our dependence on environmentally damaging finite resources. It’s worth the time just to hear Jeff Masters of Weather Underground call climate change the ‘Voldemort of our time.’ We also featured the David Swanson review of the latest book by DN!’s Amy Goodman.

Enjoying the dry, mild Texas weather with a steady supply of electricity, I felt accutely aware how lucky I am — and worried for the many people I know in the storm zone. My thoughts are with my family and friends in Connecticut, the many Occupiers throughout the region I’ve connected with since joining that movement, and of course Ellie Elliott, Scarecrow, Jane Hamsher, Cynthia and all firepups that live in affected areas. Check in when you can & stay safe!

Twitter provides the most up to date coverage of this actively developing event. Check the hashtag #Sandy and related ones like #SandyNYC for the latest from regular people on the ground (though beware of misinformation and pranksters). And share your news in the comments here.

This is our latest open thread — what’s on your mind?

Watercooler: Religion

6:20 pm in Uncategorized by Kit OConnell

Hi, y’all.

From nuns to hospitals to Trinity Wall Street, there was a lot about (Christian) religion on My Firedoglake today. We can see the nuns doing good while wondering about the other problems of (some?) organized religion, especially as it becomes mired in the politics of the 1% (Trinity Wall Street).

For me, I was raised in the Catholic church but have come to be an agnostic with a firm believer in the power of ritual. I think ritual helps us order our lives, helps us feel control, while building a sense of connection with the people we are near. It doesn’t have to be a religious ritual and it can be as simple as a regularly shared meal or as complex as the central effigy of Burning Man. I sometimes think this love of ritual is hard-wired into human brains, and some researchers support this notion.

Of course, I think we have to keep working with what works for us, and avoid doing things just because others tell us — then we’ve moved from ritual into the bad part of tradition, the part that can keep us from growing.

I’m going to cut this short here — I’m afraid I may be coming down with a cold — sore throat, achey head.

That’s what’s on my mind tonight, though. What’s on yours? This is today’s open thread.