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02/22/2020

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John K. Samson’s new song, Millennium for All, protests the underfunding and over-securitization of his favourite library

On February 25, 2019, Winnipeg’s Millennium Library installed intrusive airport-style security and began physical searches of everyone entering the library. They did so despite overwhelming evidence that such measures hurt vulnerable and marginalized people and don’t make anyone safer, and without consulting any community groups, experts, elected officials or library patrons. These measures, unprecedented in Canada, have led to a massive drop in attendance. Many no longer feel welcome at their library.

“I wanted to write a song about the Millennium Library, which I visited and worked at weekly for most of my life until the security was installed a year ago,” says Samson, who with his partner Christine Fellows was the 2016-17 Winnipeg Public Library’s Writer-in-Residence. “I wanted to demonstrate how the Millennium is so much more than a building full of books. It’s the heart of my community and I miss it.”

Samson is accompanied on Millennium for All by Winnipeg musicians Ashley Au, Christine Fellows, Scott Nolan and Jason Tait. Christine also made the remarkable cut and paste stop motion video that accompanies the song, and local artist Jonathan Dyck drew the birds.

The song is named after activist group Millennium for All, which was formed to resist securitization and advocate for a fully funded, decolonial, accessible and welcoming library. Over the last year they’ve held protests and zine-making parties, have done research, written reports, letters and op-eds, made presentations at info sessions and city hall, and engaged with other concerned Winnipeg residents and communities.

The song and video also have a practical purpose. “I want to help promote the upcoming week of events being organized by Millennium for All and Budget for All Winnipeg. We need to make it clear to the city and library management that we don’t accept exclusionary security in our library, and also remind politicians that libraries require committed investment. All Winnipeg’s libraries are underfunded and understaffed, yet the mayor and councillors are threatening to cut funding even further to these and other essential services in their proposed city budget next month. We can’t let that happen.”

Samson believes libraries are at the centre of the struggle for social justice. “I’ve been really inspired by people acting on behalf of libraries, from community resistance to transphobia at the Toronto Public Library to Winnipegger’s protests against the racist and exclusionary security at the Millennium. We need our libraries to be truly welcoming and fully funded.”

For more info on Millennium for All’s week of events, see budgetforall.org, and follow millennium4all and budgetforallwpg

JOIN US FOR A RALLY IN THE LOBBY OF MILLENNIUM LIBRARY, TUESDAY, FEB 25, 4:30 PM, TO OBSERVE THE ANNIVERSARY OF INVASIVE SECURITY AND TO PROTEST THE PROPOSED CITY BUDGET CUTS TO LIBRARIES AND OTHER LIFE-SUSTAINING SERVICES!

AND GET READY FOR BUDGET FOR ALL WINNIPEG’S DAY OF ACTION, MARCH 14!

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bibliogrrl
83 days ago
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On the hunt

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After 7 years at Mozilla I am now looking for a new job. 70 of us were laid off in mid-January. I tweeted about it on the day of the layoff; my tweet was quoted in the tech press and some newspapers. For a few days, this got a lot of attention. Meanwhile, also on the day of the layoffs, we started a Slack channel for mutual aid, and a spreadsheet with our names, contact info, job titles, and links to resumes or LinkedIn profiles. From the tweet getting the attention, a lot of recruiters and hiring managers looked at our spreadsheet. And, awesomely, I found out later that when Wayfair laid off 500+ people, they copied our spreadsheet format for their own organizing! This, for me, put a healthy spin on the layoff. The solidarity we expressed was and is very cheering. The story was now about our teamwork and support for each other.

As I looked into open release manager positions it became clear that the closest role to it was Technical Program Manager, and you can think of release management as a specialty of being a TPM.

Initially I was keeping notes on what I applied for in the Mac Notes app, but that got clunky. So, I created a project board in GitHub to manage all the applications I was sending out. Each job listing became a GitHub issue, and the project board has columns for “Interested”, “Applied”, “Interviewing”, “On-site”, and “Nope”. As my applications move through these stages I simply move its card. Within the columns, it’s also useful to me to have colored labels for “Waiting for a response”, “Scheduling in progress”, “Interview scheduled” and “Study needed”. Each issue contains the job listing, a link to the listing, names of people who I’ve talked with and their contact info. And, every interview or email I have for that job gets its own comment on the issue.

Sharing that project board didn’t work as easily as I would like. I made a generic version of the repo, with blank cards and an explanation of a way to use it, but when you fork a public repo, you can’t then make it private. The project boards also don’t fork – they have to be copied separately.

So, I made the same job hunting board in Trello and have shared it for anyone to use.

It’s very helpful to have an organized system like this — it lets you apply to many jobs at once and keep all the details readily at hand.

I am actually enjoying the interviews and studying for them. To study, I read about the company, maybe looking up all the tech in the stack they use or reading about the general space they’re in, their competitors, etc. For someone like me who enjoys diving into endless Wikipedia ratholes this is a pleasure. I try to write out what I’ve learned, sometimes more than once to synthesize the information in different ways.

Another way to study and prepare is to write out my answers to various common questions. For a program or release manager role, this seems to be focused on describing situations you’ve been in and what you’ve done. For example, describe a technically complex project you worked on and how you managed it. Describe a time when you got negative feedback and how you responded. Tell about a time when you had to balance many different projects and what tools you used and describe the result. So, here I tried to reflect on things I’d done at Mozilla that I was particularly proud of and could remember well enough to describe! Writing them out in paragraphs and then as bullet points means that I won’t get stuck for answers to questions about my own experiences.

Another type of question that needs study is the “system design” problem. So, say you are starting out on a project to create a photo sharing app. WHAT DO YOU DO. Fun! At least I think so. There’s plenty of guides on thinking through problems of this sort, some general and some specific. Here’s one I really liked, Vasanth’s System Design Cheatsheet. You can take this general structure and work through some specific situations like a photo sharing app or a messaging app.

Anyway, I miss Mozilla, and working on Firefox, but I’m learning a lot and keeping my spirits up. I have plenty of interviews. Wherever I end up I’ll learn some new skills and advance in my career. Going into Mozilla, I wanted to work as part of a large collaboration alongside many other engineers. I definitely got that — I learned so much and am grateful for all the opportunities I had there and fabulous people I got to meet.

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bibliogrrl
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How to Draw Birds

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HOW TO DRAW AN EAGLE
  1.  Draw a Pac-Man ghost
  2.  Give it a beak
  3.  Done


HOW TO DRAW A SANDPIPER
  1. Draw a chair
  2. Make it into a sandpiper
  3. That's all


HOW TO DRAW A DUCK
  1. Draw a floor lamp
  2. Make it look like a duck
  3. You're all done


HOW TO DRAW A SPARROW
  1. Draw a baby cradle
  2. Add some bird things
  3. Stop because you're done


HOW TO DRAW A CARDINAL
  1. Draw a happy eel
  2. Turn it on its side
  3. Good job





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jad
257 days ago
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MaryEllenCG
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Greater Bostonia
bibliogrrl
258 days ago
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In the 4th chapter of Luke’s gospel, Jesus gets up in the...

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In the 4th chapter of Luke’s gospel, Jesus gets up in the synagogue to read from the Scriptures. He said, “The spirit of God is on me and has told me to give good news to the impoverished, release the incarcerated, recover the sight of the blind, and release the oppressed.” 

He put down the scroll and said “Today this is fulfilled,” and then a mob tried to throw him off a cliff. 

I made some prints of angels and demons to illustrate those good old time religion promises. 

Available for sale soon at benwildflower.com. 

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jepler
271 days ago
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Earth, Sol system, Western spiral arm
jad
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bibliogrrl
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eilatan
266 days ago
I really like this art, but I went to his website and he's selling an anti-GMO print and...I just can't.
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https://benwildflower.com/products/jubilee-crossThis piece was...

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https://benwildflower.com/products/jubilee-crossThis piece was created as a commission for Jubilee Baptist Church, an explicitly anti-capitalist congregation working together to free each other from debt.

My hope was that anyone familiar with the San Damiano cross and the Catholic Worker’s masthead would immediately see the (blunt, explicit) echoes of those in this print. The story goes that Jesus said to St Francis, “Rebuild my church,” from the San Damiano cross, which I copied the overall shape of this for. I thought that was fitting since Jubilee Baptist is both a replanting of an old congregation and an attempt to breathe fresh life into a tradition in need of rebuilding.

I chose the text because I like the good news for workers (like me!) I think just about anybody can relate to being weary and heavy laden and my hope is that the meeting place where people see this every week is a place they get to lay those burdens down.

One of the taglines the leaders of this church have settled on is Worship/ Gather/ Struggle/ Liberate. I chose to add the bread and wine, Pentecost spirit flame dove, fists raised in solidarity, and broken shackles to represent the four of those respectively at the four corners of the cross.

Workers of the world, Jesus loves you.

Available for purchase at https://benwildflower.com/products/jubilee-cross.

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jepler
271 days ago
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Earth, Sol system, Western spiral arm
bibliogrrl
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jewishcaz:corporatetwitteraccount:corporatetwitteraccount:solarpunkwobbly:dravidarasathi:dravidarasat...

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jewishcaz:

corporatetwitteraccount:

corporatetwitteraccount:

solarpunkwobbly:

dravidarasathi:

dravidarasathi:

dravidarasathi:

dravidarasathi:

Holy shit…. Never Again Action (the group who started #JewsAgainstICE) had an ICE detention truck drive through them while they were shutting down Wayne Detention Center in Rhode Island this evening (August 14th).

Like they were holding the line across the entry gate and refusing to let night shift guards in and a massive truck just, fucking, drove up to them then slowed as the protestors got up from where they were sitting, alarmed, then the truck accelerated into people.

It doesn’t seem like there are any serious injuries. The people who were around the truck after it stopped accelerating into people were pepper sprayed.

EDIT: Wyatt ICE Detention Center, not Wayne

SOURCE: Never Again Action’s twitter livestream of the action and the car attack

The truck was driven by an ICE guard.

As this information is publicly available, the law in the US does not consider this doxxing, which is why it was on twitter on the first place. Here’s the guy.

Its the same people. If you can stomach working for ICE its because you’re a right-wing fascist. Same tactics, different day.

Fun fact, y’all!! Jewish protesters have been surrounding and shutting down ICE detention centers for weeks now, and we’re getting absolutely NO media coverage. None. In the slightest. And by jewish protesters I mean THOUSANDS OF US HAVE BEEN PROTESTING FOR NIGHTS ON END AND OVER 250 HAVE BEEN ARRESTED AT THIS POINT AND WE ARE GETTING ZERO COVERAGE. This is probably the biggest protest movement in american jewish history and it’s getting no coverage. We got hit with a truck DRIVEN BY A DETENTION CENTER GUARD and pepper sprayed and many people ended up in the hospital - one man in his sixties has a broken leg and a potentially broken back because of it. PLEASE REBLOG THIS. THOUSANDS OF YOUR JEWISH SIBLINGS ARE TRYING TO SHUT DOWN THE CENTERS AND WE’RE GETTING ZERO COVERAGE. PLEASE PLEASE SPREAD THIS AROUND.

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jad
281 days ago
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283 days ago
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