Sunday, September 6, 2009

The Times They Are A-Changin'

It's been a lovely education for me on this platform. I started blogging a little over a year ago because I couldn't drone on and bore my friends to death 'with all the unborn chicken voices in my head.' Word to Thom Yorke (see Paranoid Android lyrics).

Blogging has been an awesome space, a meta-space if you will, to explore trends, politics, art, ideas that I obsess over daily. As I write my novel, the blog has been an awesome respite, allowing me to sort through themes in the blog space. It's another space for my creative process.

Sometimes I try to add more to our conversation about these times we live in. I think I've succeeded in some areas; I'm sure I haven't other times.

All of this is to say that The Bellewether State is moving from Blogger to Wordpress.

Beginning September 7, 2009, you can find me at

Can't think of a better way to begin a new cycle than Labor Day.

Change is good.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Rhythm Nation - MJ Dance Party in Prospect Park 8.29.09

The County of Kings represented for the King of Pop. Rain and barricades couldn't keep this crowd back. All ages, all colors, all... getting together to celebrate the music and life of the King of Pop on his 51st Birthday. It was bittersweet. These lyrics ran through my head like a tape:

We're Sendin' Out
A Major Love
And This Is Our
Message To You
The Planets Are Linin' Up
We're Bringin' Brighter Days
They're All In Line
Waitin' For You
Can't You See . . .?
You're Just Another Part Of Me . . 

For my part, it was hard to decide between dancing or taking pics. Not sure this small offering of images can do justice to the spirit of the people of Brooklyn in the park last Saturday. But if you weren't there, here's some highlights from DJ Spinna and Spike Lee's Party Saturday in Prospect Park. 


See and download the full gallery on posterous

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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Public Option Hullabaloo 2.0

I signed one of those petitions to support the public option. I feel really strongly about it. There was a space for a note to POTUS. I doubt he'll read it personally, but I'm so peeved about the affair, I might have gone a little overboard.

Dear President Obama,

While I respect your team’s efforts to work with Congress and the Health Care Industry to develop mechanisms for reform and regulation, I must again reiterate my support for a public option. I'm not clear on what we gain if there isn't a mechanism that allows for uninsured, self-employed, freelancers to buy affordable health coverage that allows for preventive care.

I'll never regret my vote for you and your team, but I need you guys to 'man up' and push reform through that will benefit my generation. I'm 35 years old, unemployed, uninsured, now freelancer, with a pre-existing condition. This pre-existing condition is treatable, however, the medication is $300 a month, which well exceeds my budget at present.

I’m not sure how we find ourselves in this class and ideological warfare with our fellow Americans. However, my mind is on the future, my generation and the one behind me that will carry the burden of an over-bloated system that seems to support deep corporate interests rather than the welfare of communities. I’m not sure how our value system became so skewed that our choices are to include a bill that covers tort reform to limit recourse for patients who have legitimate complaints against negligent doctors. I’m not sure how we’ve come to accept that the only way uninsured can secure treatment is to go to the emergency room where they will incur costs that far exceed a modest premium if a public option existed. I’m not sure how we’re the only westernized nation in the world that refuses to acknowledge that quality health care is critical to the growth and health of a nation. I’m not sure how, with relative ease it seemed, we went to war with a nation for which we had no legitimate quarrel, and committed countless dollars to support it. I’m not sure how we failed to recognize in doing so, we would be engaged in nation building for probably the next twenty years. I’m not sure how we haven’t made the connection that our bloated national debt mirrors our values and our belief that we can leverage debt personal and communal without consequence. I’m not sure how we got here. But we’re here. You said we’re the ones we’ve been waiting for. Well, here we are. We are at the most critical ideological crossroad here. I’m not in office so I don’t have the power to push key legislators like Baucus, among others to do right by us. You do. You’re the leader of the party; you’re the leader of our nation.

We can do this. I need you to be my fiercest advocate to get this done. Or at the very least, sell me on how an alternative to the public option will actually help me purchase affordable health insurance without relying an employer.

With respect and grave concern,


Syreeta McFadden

Native of Wisconsin, Resident of New York


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