Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Apparently, I do have a spine

Unlike the Democrats. *cough cough*

So, I made my way to my doctor's this morning and then went for xrays of my knees, hips and (thoracic) spine. Every time I went by a Calgary Sun newspaper box I could see Harper's beady eyes staring out at me over the caption "So sue me" which, I assume, referred to the Atlantic Accord promise that he broke. I've been out of the news loop the past few days (and there's no way I'm buying a Sun newspaper) so I see I missed another huge Steve Scandal (tm).

Harper, meanwhile, signaled his impatience with allegations from Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald that the government was reneging on its commitment to his province. MacDonald pulled the plug on talks with Ottawa over the weekend.

"If you are really serious in the allegation that we have broken a contract, then I think you have to follow that allegation up with action," Harper said during a joint news conference in Ottawa with Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende.

Harper warned that if the province didn't take legal action, the federal government "will consult tribunals ourselves" in order to secure a ruling on whether it is respecting the accord. His spokeswoman, Carolyn Stewart Olsen, would not say what court or tribunal Harper meant.

MacDonald shot back that Nova Scotia will "not be bullied," and that the court that matters in this case is the "court of public opinion." He warned that Harper's intransigence would cost the federal government political support in Nova Scotia and elsewhere in the next election.

Danny Williams, premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, mocked Harper's challenge to decide the issue in court, dismissing the legal route as too time consuming.

"I find it really ridiculous for a prime minister of a country to turn around and say, 'Sue me or I'll sue you,'" Williams said in an interview.

Frankly, I think someone should take him up on his offer and sue him...for something...anything. Arrogant ass that he is. I got back home in time to catch the budget bill vote and the fact that even though Nova Scotia Tory MP Gerald Keddy had a little tantrum, he still voted for the budget anyway. Danny Williams should take him out to the woodshed for a good talking to.

Time for summer holidays now?

Control freakish Steve's antics reminded me of this article I read on Philip Slater's site the other nite: "Temporary Insanity: The World in Transition". It's interesting. Check it out and read it all the way through. (That's an order.) Here's a snippet:

This attempt to control nature was an addictive drug, requiring bigger and bigger hits. For before long it’s not just plants and animals and insects that have to be controlled—it’s other people. And ultimately, yourself. Control requires a lot of splitting—ourselves from the earth, ourselves from other people—from ‘enemies’—and our egos from our bodies, our feelings, our instincts. “Control yourself, child!” becomes the core of childrearing.

In the 18th century, what I call Control Culture began to be challenged—just as it was reaching its peak. But before discussing its challenger I want to say a few words about how this system—so familiar to us all—operates.

If your life revolves around getting control--over Nature, other people, and your own body and feelings--you can't look at the world around you as one great indissoluble, ever-changing Unity. How could you ever control such a thing? So Control Culture tended to split it up ("divide and conquer"), to see the world as a static collection of paired opposites: friend/enemy, master/slave, mind/body, man/nature, aristocrat/peasant, good/evil. It was a world that fit the Bible and Newton's Clockwork Universe equally well.

Another problem for the Controller is that living things aren't all that crazy about being controlled, so you're going to have to fight a lot. Control Culture was a warrior culture--competitive, belligerent, macho. And a culture based on war tends to be authoritarian. Slaves and serfs have to be kept in line, and fighting men--trained to be competitive and quarrelsome--have to be controlled. So rigid hierarchies with rigid rules of behavior became the norm. And because war was viewed as the most noble masculine profession, parents raised their boys to be 'from Mars'--that is, stoic, rigid, and aggressive, while women were expected to specialize in cooperation, intimacy, and nurturance. And since women weren't doing soldierly things they wound up at the bottom of the social hierarchy. Even the lowest serf was expected to dominate his wife.

I mention the position of women last, but in fact it’s the foundation of the entire system. You cannot have an authoritarian, war-like society unless women are devalued and oppressed.

Slater briefly but, I think, effectively touches on the many aspects of our society that constitute this "Control Culture" and concludes that we may well be at a breaking point in history which will usher in a more "Integrative Culture". That's not going to happen overnight, obviously, but it certainly looks more positive than the nightmare we're currently living through.

Which brings me back to my personal situation (in its own little way: temporary insanity, control, breaking point, integration and finally healing). My doctor had a good laugh when I told him about the useless twit of a doctor I saw at the walk-in clinic on Friday who had decided there was nothing he could do for me, so why run tests to find out what was wrong? Gotta love that so-called "logic". Dr "it's the lupus". I'll give him "it's the lupus". I'll bet he voted for Steve and if I had let him ramble on, I'm sure he would have found a way to blame my pain on the Liberals eventually.

Anyway, as I mentioned, my doctor is concerned that I may have a compressed thoracic (rhymes with Jurassic, which is how old I feel) disc which I guess is kind of rare because that area of the spine, which doesn't have the flexibility of the lumbar and cervical spinal areas (I Googled), isn't usually prone to such things unless caused by some sort of injury. Hopefully, he'll find out what's going on with my hip as well. As for my knee (these are all on the right side), I noticed that it's been swollen compared to my left one the past month or so (who knows wtf is going on there??). As I told my doctor when he walked in: I'm a mess. (And don't even ask me about my stress level. Really. Don't.)

I had to stop taking the heavier painkillers (Toradol™) because they can cause kidney damage (apparently) so you can only be on them for 5 days (and "the lupus" affects my kidneys). Maybe my head will clear up a bit so I can actually think now as well - although the pills did help a bit with the pain. Now I'm back to regular ibuprofen and Tylenol™. According to the new teevee commercials, the people who make Tylenol ™ "LOVE" it. They're freaks. There's been too much "loving" stuff and products in commercials lately. I find it nauseating. Do the people who make the anti-nausea pills "LOVE" them too? Should I fucking care?

Alrighty then.

So, there you have it. I should have my test results by Monday (maybe?). If everything looks fine, I'll be (secretly) paging Dr Kevorkian (wouldn't want to make him violate his probation publicly) because everything isn't fine, obviously.

Pain sucks. Chronic pain - even more so. Thanks to those of you who have shared your aches and pains with me too. There are so many of us. You can just never tell what's going on behind a person's screen name. (Maybe now you know why I'm so damn cranky sometimes. Okay. Well I'm like that naturally too - but that's beside the point...).

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