This work was done with markers on paper a few years ago. I used to paint a new self portrait every year but then I stopped doing that.
Today was an average Saturday. I worked my news job and then went to the coffee shop to chat with friends. @tarotbyfergus pulled some tarot cards which suggested that I'll soon be traveling and coming into money. These aren't things that seem likely to happen in my life, but that's what was apparently in the cards.
In truth, covid has sort of ruined the whole idea of travel for me. I have no desire to sit in quarantine somewhere or present my medical papers for inspection to whoeverthefuck demands to see them. In my opinion, the entire world has lost its mind over this virus. My natural inclination is to hide from all the lunatics until the madness has passed. Sadly, it may not pass.
This is something I've been having a hard time coming to terms with. Every day, I hear people parroting verifiably false information about the virus, vaccines, etc etc. Meanwhile, the federal government is preparing to spend another $3.5T in ways designed to primarily benefit the rich under the pretense of helping everyone. For reference alt source, governments globally initially responded to the pandemic by spending about $9T. In the subsequent year, the ultra-rich became about $5T richer. This probably wasn't coincidental.
These days, when I hear about increased government spending, all I picture is more handouts to the rich. If the US government really wanted to spend $3.5T in a helpful way, they'd just give everybody $10k and call it a day. But the government isn't really in the business of helping people. They're in the business of helping the rich at the expense of everybody else.
Twenty years ago, I believed that the military industrial complex and our corporate overlords should be overthrown by any means necessary. Ten years ago and slightly wiser, I believed people could reshape the Democratic Party into a party that genuinely served the people. These beliefs have shifted dramatically over the last several years while I've worked in news media.
Presently, I believe in the technological containment and displacement of every power structure that's part of the legacy system. I believe in uncensored freedom and radical transparency, particularly in business and governance. I think all social services should be replaced by universal healthcare and a universal basic income. And I'm pretty sure that altogether, every covid policy measure that's so far been enacted has made matters worse, not better, in the long term for average people. Simply allowing the virus to run its course would have produced more initial death, but more comprehensive long term immunity in the population, and far less economic devastation -- which has been visited almost exclusively on the lower class while the rich grow richer.
So instead of acquiring herd immunity by procedures nature established in our species over many years, we're now being told that vaccine boosters will be required annually or even more often. And people are going along with it. Because they've completely lost their minds.
The dissent of conspiracy theorists who say the vaccine is a Bill Gates mind control plot isn't meaningful dissent. Neither is the dissent produced by partisan meme factories meaningful. The real conspiracy here is that the vaccine kinda sucks and yet everybody is acting like it's got magical powers that'll save us. In the absence of meaningful dissent, public policy is being based on such magical thinking. So is corporate policy. It's bizarre.