I See Red and Green

Why is it that the people with a vested interest in maintaining the status quo are the most likely to yell about being colour-blind? Take, for example, this post over at Christian Conservative. I really think that the only way for someone who lives in North America and has a reasonable amount of intelligence to say something like that is through willful ignorance. It cannot escape one's notice that all the Presidents of the USA (and, for that matter, all elected Prime Ministers of Canada) have belonged to a certain demographic. Why, having made that observation, would it not occur to one to immediately wonder what it is about that demographic that is keeping its members in office? How are people so incurious that they're happy to not wonder at all and continue to maintain that their electoral process is entirely a meritocracy?

In response to Gallaugher's final paragraph:

Why can’t we talk about a Presidential candidate who is best fit for the job, rather than whether they are black, white, red or green?
I said this in the comments:
Because there has never been a black President. As I see it there are two options:

1) There has never been a black person qualified and competent to be president who wanted the job


2) There is still racism in the USA and no black person can be elected President, no matter how qualified they are.

Now, given the number of black people in the USA, the only way to believe (1) is true is to believe that black people are inherently less capable of doing the job of president than white people. Since civilized and well-informed people (yourself included, of course) will obviously reject that, (2) is what's left. So we need to talk about it.
What I want to know is, are there grounds to either reject my dichotomy, or reject my conclusion about option (1)? If not then, Gallaugher, do you want to fess up to believing option (1) and its corollary?

It seems that Conservatives have decided to attach themselves to the optics of the phrase colour-blind while completely failing to get the point. While being blind to an individual's race, sex, orientation, or religious beliefs when considering them for a job, position, scholarship, etc. is generally* a good thing, being blind to these things when examining the demographics of certain positions to determine if they have actually been awarded on merit is, of course, impossible. And continuing to act blind to them when the obvious conclusion is that the positions are not being awarded entirely on merit, but also on the basis of these characteristics is despicable.

Gallaugher, I challenge you: If you reject what I've said above, explain why. If you don't, justify your insistence on colourblindness in examining the prospects for who could get elected to the role of President.

*There are certain positions where some of these characteristics are, in fact, relevant. For example, a Mosque would be justified in taking religion into account when choosing people for positions of religious leadership, regardless of whether there were non-Muslim applicants who actually knew more about Islam than some of the (apparently under-educated in this case) Muslim applicants. Also, there are times when some of the characteristics would have a direct bearing on competence, for example, could a man effectively lead a Take Back the Night campaign?

Also, I want to make clear that this should not be construed as my being against affirmative action. Only if all, or at least most, potential employers, decision-makers, electors, etc. were colour-blind in this way, and nepotism were non-existent, would affirmative action be unnecessary.



Well, it's a bit late for my tastes, and there isn't very much of it, but the white stuff that dusted the ground last night is still there, and I can no longer comfortably hang out on the balcony in just jeans and a tank top. As winter goes, it's not much, but I'll take it.


Back Home

I'm back from doing tree, turkey, and presents with my mom's family. I hope everyone in the Northern Hemisphere reading this has had a nice winter solstice light-and-warmth focused holiday with lots of food and loved ones and funny anecdotes. I certainly did. Of the 14 of us that were gathered at my aunt's house, 4 of us were unaffected by the virus that made its way around. That's fun. Fortunately (though not for him) my sweetie seems to be the only one who's still not feeling well. Everyone was very pleased with their hot chocolate mix, and I got a lasagna pan and a casserole dish, which I've been wanting for ages, as well as some other fun and happy presents. Most excellent. Also, I made that same noggy noggy egg nog and it went over quite well.

All in all, a good winter solstice light-and-warmth focused holiday which I will, for lack of a better word, call Christmas, although there was no Christ to be found, thank NOTA.

Now, if only it were acting like winter outdoors...


Chocolatey Goodness

The idea to do this came from the Hillbilly Housewife, as did the idea to use coffee creamer, but the recipe is largely my own, based on how I make cocoa with regular milk. Being poor and hating shopping for bargains, I decided to give jars of this mix to various family for xmas.

For one cup of hot chocolate you want
- 4-6 tbsp of powdered skim milk (depending on the brand, just follow the instructions for 1 cup of milk)
- 2 tsp cocoa, sifted
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp coffee whitener (it helps with the texture, possibly because it contains lecithin).

For about 7 litres of mix (enough to make approximately 60 cups of hot chocolate) you want:
- 5.5 litres powdered skim milk
- 2.5 cups cocoa, sifted
- 2.5 cups sugar
- 1.25 cups coffee whitener
(The volumes aren't entirely additive because some of the little particles of cocoa and sugar go where the air would be between the bigger particles of milk)

The instructions to give with the mix are as follows:
To make: combine 1/2 cup mix with 1 cup water. Stir well.

You can also jazz it up by adding some powdered mint candies or just stirring with a candy cane. I'm very proud of this idea and of the recipe.



Melba toast blows me away. They've come up with a way to get people to pay for bread that by rights should be too stale to sell. Amazing.


I Am Teh Awesome

Know why? Cuz I just made noggy noggy egg nog. All by myself (but with much encouragement from Da5id, who was most helpful in licking the whipped cream bowl). And know what? It is majorly yummy. So much better than the store-bought kind. I lurve eggnog. It tends to separate if you don't chug it, but that's okay. Cuz it's yummy. Mmmmmmm, eggnog.