S1E109 – This Month in the Apocalypse: March, 2024

Episode Summary

This week on Live Like the World is Dying, Brooke, Margaret, and Inmn talk about the environment, how a Boeing whistle blower died suspiciously, Abbot’s newest attempt to make Texas a mini fief, and remember the lives of 3 teens. They also talk about hope and some nice things that happened for a change.

Host Info

Inmn can be found on Instagram @shadowtail.artificery. Margaret can be found on twitter @magpiekilljoy or instagram at @margaretkilljoy. Brooke can be found on Twitter or Mastodon @ogemakweBrooke.

Publisher Info

This show is published by Strangers in A Tangled Wilderness. We can be found at www.tangledwilderness.org, or on Twitter @TangledWild and Instagram @Tangled_Wilderness. You can support the show on Patreon at www.patreon.com/strangersinatangledwilderness.


Live Like the World is Dying: This Month in the Apocalypse: March 2024

**Margaret ** 00:15
Hello and welcome to Cool People Who Did Cool Stuff your podcast. . . I did the wrong. . . Did I do the wrong one? Should we keep it?

**Brooke ** 00:23
[All laughing] I love you so much.

**Margaret ** 00:26
Hello and welcome to Live Like the World is Dying, the other podcast that I’m one of the three hosts of. I’m Margaret killjoy, and with me is

**Brooke ** 00:37
Brooke. Hi. 

**Inmn ** 00:38
And Inmn, who can’t tell if this was a bit or not,

**Margaret ** 00:41
Let’s pretend it was a bit. [Sarcastically] I have functional memory. I’m not on podcast recording number five for the week. I don’t know what you’re talking about. And this is Live Like the World is Dying, your podcast for what feels like the end times. And welcome back. We’ve been on a break because we were all a little burned out and we wanted to catch up because we didn’t want to. . . We thought through our options, we could either have gone off a weekly schedule, but we’re like, "Well, we like having a weekly schedule." So we took a break. And I don’t remember whether we told you about that break, but it’s over. Don’t worry. It’ll never. . . It’ll totally happen again. And whatever, you like watching TV shows that have season breaks, you can. . . I’m sure you all figured it out. Anyway, it’s This Month in the Apocalypse, only this time, we’re going to be a little bit messy because it’s been a little bit. So it’s like this month and a half in the apocalypse. So you get an extra. It’s like 1.5 as much apocalypse as usual. Y’all are so lucky. But first, this podcast is a proud member of the Channel Zero Network of anarchists podcast and here’s a jingle from another show on the network. 

**Brooke ** 01:14
Okay, so it just occurred to me that if we’re doing half of March, we’re at some point going to have to do half of March. So we’re either going to have to have half a month in Apocalypse or do half of March and April, and then there’ll be another month and a half. So maybe we should call this 45 Days in the Apocalypse? I’m just saying.

**Margaret ** 02:52
I’ll just continue to messily not exactly keep track of "Oh, that happened on this date instead of this state, so it can’t come in." But I’m open to it. I can be convinced. So I want to talk about some stuff. One of the things I want to talk about is how I would never say Boeing assassinated a man. But I would say that everyone who pays attention to the following news story comes to the inevitable conclusion that the private company Boeing, which manufactures an awful lot of the planes in this country, has been having a lot of problems lately. A lot of people think they assassinated a man. There was a man named John Barnett. He was a Boeing whistleblower and he was found dead on March 10th. And the news can’t say, quote, "he was assassinated." So instead, they’re dancing around it, doing things like putting "self-inflicted," in quotes, when they talk about the gunshot wounds that this man had to his head. I honestly. . . like this one, it’s like, it’s like one of those things where it didn’t surprise me, but it still surprised me. I don’t know how to describe this. It’s a very common feeling these days were something absolutely horrible happens, where you’re like, "Oh, of course that happened." But you’re still a little bit like, "I can’t believe that happened." John Barnett was a quality control manager at a Boeing plant in South Carolina. He worked on the 787 Dreamliners. And he had been pretty upset about a lot of the quality control that was going on. There’s been a lot of conversation recently about Boeing and its lack of quality control, because their planes are literally falling apart in the air. And of course, there were two crashes a couple years ago that killed hundreds of people, that had to do with some faulty technology that caused the planes to go into nosedives that the pilots couldn’t correct.

**Brooke ** 04:52
And John Oliver just did a longer piece on Boeing too. So that brought it out in conversations.

**Margaret ** 04:57
Yeah, well, and then the main thing that brought it up I think is that in the US it actually happens to US people. So people noticed. An airplane had the plug in the side of the plane blow out. And it was before it had gotten up to cruising altitude and it would have gone a lot worse if it had happened a little bit later. Fortunately, no one was seriously injured and the plane was able to land. And from there, it’s just been this cascading thing. I really recommend John Oliver’s The Last Week Tonight about Boeing and what’s been going on with the planes. Anyway, John Barnett, quality control manager, and he was in Charleston to give a deposition against Boeing because he was suing them for retaliation because of his whistleblowing, and then they were like, "Hey, how come he didn’t show up in court?" And so they went to his hotel and they found him dead in his pickup truck, having a quote unquote, "self-inflicted" gunshot wound. He was 62 years old. And rest in peace. And I have yet to meet anyone who has heard this news and not been like, "Yep, Boeing killed a man."

**Brooke ** 06:15
Sure seems like it. 

**Inmn ** 06:16
That’s what reasonable people would come to the conclusion of because it’s what’s happened in the past.

**Margaret ** 06:27
And, you know, I mean, there’s also. . . Sure there’s technically a version of the world where he was like, "I’m just so sad about. . ." No, he was. . .whatever. Anyway, Okay, so then I’m gonna talk about environmental news. 

**Brooke ** 06:42
Do that. 

**Margaret ** 06:44
Don’t worry, it’s worse. 

**Inmn ** 06:46
Oh, no. 

**Margaret ** 06:48
So let’s see. This was the warmest February in Earth’s history. This is the ninth month in a row that we have been in the warmest of this following month on record. The time we beat this time, for February warmest, was 2016 was the previous warmest month of February in history. And charts are literally being recalibrated to show the excessive heat. If you look at a lot of these charts, the lines from this year don’t even touch previous years, you know? Next, there’s the warmest winter on record in the United States. This month, the average global sea surface temperature was the highest it’s ever been in the recorded history of the Earth for any month at all. The average global sea surface temperature was 69.96 degrees Fahrenheit. And we’re very likely to have a very active hurricane season this year in the Atlantic because of the fact that. . . We actually might not have a hotter year this year than last year because the–I get El Nino and La Nina mixed up–but overall we’ve been–I’m pretty sure it’s like El Nino is the thing we’ve been in and it’s the thing that makes it warmer and La Nina cools things down a little bit. And so that’s like, cool, right? We’re like, "Oh, all right, we could definitely use some cooling things down a little bit." However, people have guessed. . . "Guessed" is the wrong word. Scientists who study this shit have looked and been like–you know, or climatologists have looked–and been like "Well, this slight cooling coming at this particular way that all this heat is working we’re very likely to have a very active hurricane season."

**Brooke ** 08:27
Do you know what that starts? 

**Brooke ** 08:31
I don’t live in a hurricane zone, so I. . . Like I know it’s always summer and early fall that it’s crazy, active , busy and the worst of it, but I feel like I don’t know when that season quote unquote, "starts."

**Margaret ** 08:31
No, I don’t. 

**Margaret ** 08:43
I can’t remember that I don’t live in that area anymore. But speaking of seasons not being what they used to be, there was a study that showed that–it’s not just in your head–spring is indeed on average 13 days earlier in the United States than it was in 1981 There’s a chart up you can look at–the Washington Post actually has a pretty good article about it–that shows, it’s kind of a U shape of the country, is having way earlier springs, whereas some parts of the the Upper Midwest are a little bit later springs than usual, although not this year. But–and especially on mountain ranges–Spring is remarkably earlier, which made sense as I was walking my dog today in the middle of March and looking at the flowers blooming and thinking to myself, "Ah, yes, April showers will bring those flowers to me in May." [sardonic]

**Inmn ** 09:42
It’s early.

**Margaret ** 09:43
Yeah, so that’s not just in your head. It’s a thing that’s happening. Texas saw an incredibly destructive wildfire in the past month or so. It’s the most destructive in Texas history, is the Smoke House Creek Fire. It burned more than a million In acres. And Texas is primed for more fires. That, actually, that fire came earlier than the usual fire season, which is March and April. In the panhandle of Texas there’s a lot of basically dry grasses. And there’s specifically ways where it’s like when it comes out of freezing, it is more primed for these fires–I think the way that the grass breaks or something in the freezing. And so that is part of why the. . . You know, obviously, it’s like things are getting warmer on average, but we’re also seeing all these crazy weird cold spikes, you know? And this fire killed at least 3600 animals. I believe that it means cows in this case, and the fire was started by power lines. However, it’s unlikely to affect your beef prices this year, so don’t worry. However, the meat that you will have trouble getting this year for a reasonable price is crawfish. The crawfish population is dropping rapidly in Louisiana, and it’s fucking up the harvest like wildly. I actually care more about the ecosystem than the harvest of crawfish, personally. But I also recognize the importance of crawfish to traditional dishes and things like that. And, you know, in Louisiana, a combination of drought heat and saltwater intrusion up the Mississippi followed by a hard freeze has fucked up the harvest enormously. It is an estimated $140 million in losses. And crawfish meat has gone from $3-5 a pound to $10-12 a pound. And a critically endangered fish called the Small-tooth Sawfish has been washing up dead in Florida. And it’s funny because it’s like 20 or 30 of them have washed up, but this is a very endangered fish. So when one of them shows up, it’s a big deal. And scientists are trying to figure it out. And they’re ruling out all of these different, you know, bacterial causes. But the sort of fish going crazy and then dying is a thing that is happening. We’ve talked about more on the show before. I think Inmn talked about it. Almost positive environmental news, there is a plan in place from the Biden administration to limit drilling and cattle grazing on a fuck ton of BLM land. And as part of a plan to save the Greater Sage Grouse, adding restrictions to 67 million acres on drilling, adding drilling restrictions to about 67 million acres across 10 states. And this seems really good. And it is really good. It is. . . What actually happened, Obama passed a law limiting a bunch of drilling, and then Trump was like, "Nah, we don’t need that. Drill, baby, drill." That’s a slogan from the 80s. And so that got reversed. So Biden is like, "Well, what if I half reversed it?"

**Brooke ** 12:52
So reinstating some of it? 

**Margaret ** 12:54
Yeah, bringing back some of it.  It’s not as strong of a bill as the Biden [meant to say Obama] administration did, which sort of shows the like, constant rightward drift of American politics.

**Brooke ** 13:07
As soon as you said that the Biden administration had passed a bill, I was like, there’s a caveat coming into this. I was also like, I wonder if someone else is the President next, are they just going to undo the whole thing?

**Margaret ** 13:20
Well, considering the next president will almost certainly be Trump. I continue to hold by my theory that the next President will be Donald Trump unless Donald Trump or Biden dies a natural death. If any of them die–well, and obviously if Trump dies an unnatural death, he won’t be the next either–but if Biden dies an unnatural death then Trump is the next president, and if. . .anyway. Whereas if anyone else runs–this is my theory. Okay. Anyway, so it’s sort of actually positive. . . Well, I guess we’re gonna save the positive stuff for the end. I’ll save this positive thing for the end. That’s my environmental news. And the one other thing that I wanted to talk about before I pass it off, is I want to just sort of. . . I suspect that a lot of people already have been following what happened when an anarchist and active duty service personnel person named Aaron Bushnell killed himself by setting himself on fire while saying, "Free Palestine." I think that’s something that people are already aware of. And so I don’t want to go into it too much. But I just feel like that is a thing that needs to be on our mind that happened on February 25th this year, and, I don’t know, "Never let them say that you curse the darkness instead of lighting a candle," Aaron Bushnell. Inmn, what do you got?

**Inmn ** 14:51
Only happy things.

**Margaret ** 14:55
You’re lying.

**Inmn ** 14:56
I’m lying. You know, it’s like, to kind of put it in perspective. . . I mean, this is a perspective that we and I’m sure all our listeners already have, about just the severity of what is happening in Gaza. And this is not a new thing, but it is a thing that is taking particular note right now in Gaza, we had something that people are calling the Flour Massacre in the last like month or two. And the Flour Massacre occurred when an aid convoy was announced in Gaza City. And so you know, thousands of people showed up to receive food, receive aid, and Israeli forces used it as an opportunity to kill 118 people. Literally just shot into the crowd as people were scrambling to get flour, bread, you know, basic stuff to stay alive. And these are people who have been experiencing very long periods of malnutrition– because Israel cut off most aid from coming into Gaza–and these are super basic things that are keeping people alive. Since then, there have been another string like this. Like this big one happened and then it’s been a repeated tactic by Israel over the last month or two is attacking aid convoys, or using aid convoys as a way to gather and then attack a lot of people all at once, people who think that they’re showing up to receive food and instead are getting killed. I think of like, right now, they’re like. . . A couple days ago, there was another instance of this where like 20 people were killed, who had shown up to a supply convoy. And like another 150 or so were injured. And to make things worse, I have a story kind of about–well, it’s three. It’s three stories. It’s three very different but similar stories about three teens who died in the last month or so. And the first one is connected to Palestine as well. We have Rami Al Halhouli, who was a 12 year old Palestinian boy who was killed by Israeli border guards in the Shuafat refugee camp in East Jerusalem on the third night of Ramadan. Rami was out in the street playing with fireworks with his friends. And they were just shooting fireworks up in the sky and a Israeli border guard–whatever the fuck they’re calling them–shot Rami three or four times. And the way that–one of the disturbing things about this is the way that it’s being talked about in some media sources–and especially by Israel–is that if you read the Israeli reports, you might imagine a night of rioting, you might imagine a wall of people encroaching upon the border guards–whatever they’re called–and you might imagine people throwing Molotov cocktails at lines of soldiers. And you might imagine Rami standing out in front of them shooting a bottle rocket at border guards. This is the media narrative that Israel, and you know, consistently conservative news sources, want people to believe. In actuality, there’s video footage leading up to Rami getting shot and it shows like three or four kids playing in a vacant street and next to them, you see, like 100 feet away or something, you see the giant border wall and you see watch towers in the distance. You see a line of parked cars and you see no people in sight. And that is the scene that we have for Rami and his friends playing with fireworks on the third night of Ramadan, and Israeli forces just rolling up and shooting them for playing with fireworks. And so they’re. . . It’s like. . . They’re, you know, there’s all these, there’s all this media narrative build of "There were riots. There were disturbances–" as they’re being called. But there’s no, there’s no proof of any of that happening. And there’s literal video footage showing a few kids playing on a secluded street with fireworks. One of the security Prime Ministers of Israel was then. . . People were following him around being like, "Yeah, what the fuck? Like, what happened?" And he’s. . . there’s all this video footage of him congratulating the soldiers who shot Rami. And he then like, eventually, he eventually makes a statement, where he condemns the child as a terrorist and praises his soldiers who he’s calling warriors for killing a "terrorist." Basically being like, you know, calling for the extermination of an entire people based on this myth of terrorism. And it’s just, it’s just supremely fucked up. I had a quote prepared for something that this Prime Minister–whose name I can’t remember or find and I truly hope is lost to time, and that no one remembers him ever. And I’m not gonna say it because it’s just, it’s just too fucked up. And we can all kind of imagine what it sounds like. But it reminded me of a similar story from the Southwest United States where in 2012, Lonnie Swartz, a border patrol agent shot Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez, who Swartz said threw a rock at him through the border wall. Jose was on the Nogales, Mexico side of the border wall and was just throwing rocks at the like 60 foot wall, you know, and Lonnie Swartz shot at him 30 times through the wall. Swartz was later acquitted of all charges and Jose’s family was blocked from suing him.

**Margaret ** 22:56
It’s pretty cool that you can just kill people in other countries.

**Inmn ** 23:00
Yeah, yeah, it’s pretty. . . I can’t even make this joke.

**Margaret ** 23:08

**Inmn ** 23:08
So yeah, that is a story of one teen who was killed for playing with fireworks. Next, we’re moving back to the United States and I want to talk about Ryan Gainer. Ryan Gainer was a 15 year old black, autistic teen living in Apple Valley California. And, Ryan–this is the report that I’ve read–Ryan was having a dispute with his family that turned destructive and. . . Because people experiencing different realities, different needs, were having a destructive outburst and a family member called 911 for help because they didn’t know what to do for someone having this experience of a very–like a fairly mild thing turning into a destructive outburst. And police, instead of psychiatric services or something, showed up and within 30 seconds of the police showing up, they had shot Ryan three times. The officers say that Ryan, when they found Ryan, Ryan was wielding a garden hoe and the officer ran from him and shot him while running from him or something. And family members who, you know, were immediately, they were like, "Oh my God, wait, you shot my kid?" had maybe been expecting officers to come and–or you know anyone–to come and just like help them calm their son down. And instead the police shot him within 30 seconds of being there.

**Brooke ** 25:20
This is why we don’t call the cops. This, among other reasons, but it’s a good. . . It’s not good reminder. It’s a terrible reminder.

**Inmn ** 25:31
Yeah, it is a grim, grim reminder that any one who believes that calling 911 will help someone, especially people experiencing either like a break in reality or just having different communication needs,  the police will not help you. And they will most likely harm your loved one. And this is not me throwing any kind of blame on Ryan’s family. Yeah, but it is a grim reminder. The last person that I want to talk about is Nex Benedict.

**Brooke ** 26:20
This one hits real hard.

**Inmn ** 26:22
Yeah, it’s a hard one. Nex Benedict was a 16 year old nonbinary Choctaw teen living in Owasso, Oklahoma. Nex loved nature, drawing, reading, and inventing new recipes. On February 17th, Nex was involved in a fight at school in a bathroom and Nex was very badly beaten up by three older teens. And, so much so, that Nex had like, you know, raccoon eyes. Meaning like visible contusions around the eyes from head trauma, from having like–I’m actually not going to describe it. And Nex, I believe, went to the hospital after that and then the next day, Nex collapsed at home and was brought to the hospital and pronounced dead. And there’s kind of these two waves of media around this. One was right when Nex died, and one was just within the last few days when a medical examiner ruled Nex’s death as a suicide because of a like blood toxicology report. And it’s like, the way that the media is kind of spinning this is like, "Oh, Nex. . ." Like, people are exacerbating what happened, like "Nex wasn’t beaten to death. Nex. . ." 

**Margaret ** 28:10
Was just beaten into suicide. 

**Inmn ** 28:12
Was just beaten into suicide. 

**Margaret ** 28:14
That’s totally different and better, somehow. [sarcastically] 

**Inmn ** 28:17
Yeah. And that’s a lot of the media going around is like it’s trying to absolve blame from the people who bullied and beat Nex up so badly that they killed themself. Or, they took a lot of drugs and either meaning to or not, died as a result.

**Brooke ** 28:47
And the lack of care and support. It was after Nex went home and talked to the family that the family took Nex to the hospital. The administration, the school teachers, counselors, looked at what happened and didn’t call in medical professionals to help at the school.

**Inmn ** 29:10
Yeah. And it kind of raises this point of like you know, suicide in the queer community that if people are living in such like desperate and violent measures that people are driven to self harm or driven to like any of these things, whether intentional or non intentional death, like that is the fault of society. And yeah, if you bully someone so badly, that they self harm and die as a result, you killed that person.

**Brooke ** 29:51
Yeah. And I don’t know why I found this particular detail so disturbing, but I read that it was three teenage girls that had beat Nex in the bathroom. And I don’t know why the fact that it was girls that, you know, caused this that was so. . .It was just like an extra layer for me. You know? Like, I guess I did not expect, but when you talk about bullies and physical violence–maybe it’s just from my own childhood or life experience–you expect that to come more from men, boys. Like they’re the ones trained to have more physical altercations. So the fact that it was three girls was just, I don’t know, it’s extra weird to me.

**Inmn ** 30:43
Yeah, this one hit especially hard for me and just being someone who was like, you know. . .Like, I didn’t know I was queer when I was a teen, but it seems pretty obvious now. And like the things that I was heavily bullied for were things that, looking back, I’m like, "Oh, yes, I was bullied because I was queer. Like, this is pretty, pretty obvious to me." And it’s like, the amount of stress that you can experience from like, the daily reminder and like daily fear of being bullied is horrifying. 

**Brooke ** 31:23
And yeah, well, you know, there’s someone else out there who’s a real big bully and has a lot of power. . . 

**Inmn ** 31:31
Before we segue, I just want to wrap this into like, that these are, these are three very different and very similar stories at the same time of teens who were killed for being Palestinian, for being autistic, for being queer. And like, they all happened in the same month. And I don’t know. I think. . . Obviously, these are systemic problems and systemic and individual and personal problems in our society of like people, not knowing how to. . . not knowing how to and being aggressive towards these identities. And I don’t know. That’s just bad. And some more bad things. So, I’ve been talking on the show for a little bit now about how Abbott has kind of turned Texas into like a little mini fief via these like. . . like testing of power with the power of the Texas governor and the power of the federal government. And in the newest series of that, we have Texas, SB4. Texas SB4 is a law that was passed last year, which would allow Texas law enforcement to detain, arrest, and prosecute suspected migrants. And this is in. . . so if this seems like what normally happens, the difference between this and what normally happens is that Border Patrol is the agency that arrests people. And this would allow any Texas law enforcement to detain suspected migrants, arrest them, and prosecute them under Texas law, not under federal law.

**Inmn ** 33:15
This is like, you know, you can stop every brown person and check their papers law, right? 

**Inmn ** 33:47
Yeah. Or, sort of. Yeah,

**Margaret ** 33:51
Well the, "suspected migrant" I assumed, made it specifically around some racial indicators.

**Inmn ** 33:57
Yes, yes. Yes. Yeah. Yeah, it’s that one. And the sentences that people could have from it, for the first time, it would be a misdemeanor, and you could get six months. And for repeated prosecutions, it would be a felony carrying a maximum sentence of 20 years. And this is what’s interesting is like, this is the exact same sentence sentencing procedure for Operation Streamline, which is the court that does this at a federal level. So it’s like, it is the same sentencing that already exists. This would just grant Texas the power to do it as a State rather than at a federal level. And it is specifically aimed at circumventing asylum procedure. Yeah, so that people who are presenting for asylum can just be arrested by Texas law enforcement and prosecuted for illegal entry instead of going into asylum proceedings, and that is one of the bigger deals about this bill. And it is a bill that passed, but the Supreme Court has put a pause on it. And that pause has been recently increased until like March 18th, or something. But it seems like the Supreme Court is probably going to shut this law down.

**Margaret ** 35:28
You all listeners know, and we don’t know.

**Inmn ** 35:32
Yeah, yeah. And another legislation aimed at migrants and people seeking asylum, the Castle Doctrine in Arizona is trying to be expanded. And this is around like, you know, home defense with HB 2843. And this bill would expand the Castle Doctrine to not only include the use of lethal force to protect your home–someone from trying to break into your home–but for merely trespassing on the land that you own.

**Margaret ** 36:13
Oh, interesting. Okay. Yeah.

**Inmn ** 36:16
It doesn’t suspend any need for there to be the presentation of fear of your life, you know. It just kind of expands the area. And it’s like, caused this thing, which I think is really indicative of politics right now, which is politicians bickering with each other over like, I don’t know how to say it, like schoolyard antics, where, the Republicans are like, "Democrats are blowing this out of proportion. And they’re spreading misinformation that this law means that anyone can just shoot anyone for trespassing on their land. And that’s going to get…that’s going to get good people prosecuted for murder, because Democrats are spreading misinformation about the harm of this bill." 

**Margaret ** 37:10
Oh, okay, because they’re like. . . I have a feeling that no good person will shoot someone just for being on their property. I have to admit that like, I mean, I’m a gun rights supporter, right? And, overall, like the concept of Castle Doctrine, I’m not inherently opposed to Stand Your Ground laws and all those things. Like, obviously, they’re used, like every law, in horrible, racist and classist ways. But I am like, you know, if someone…if I’m out walking my dog on my property, and someone’s like. . . Well, I guess like, it’s so weird, right? Because then it’s like, well, what’s the difference? Because if I’m walking my dog anywhere, and someone pulls a gun on me and tries to kill me, I’m allowed to shoot, unless it’s his property or something, I guess. I am allowed to defend myself, right, from the threat of lethal force. And like, I guess it’s like. . .No, it’s just interesting. Because people shouldn’t be able to shoot people just for being on their property. And same as you shouldn’t be able to shoot someone just for taking your TV. But there’s also like…it’s fairly understandable that someone breaking into your house, in the middle of the night, can be perceived as a threat to your life. To me, the problem here is not the gun rights of the house owner. To me, the problem is the systemic poverty that has led someone to a life of stealing TVs, you know, and I don’t know, I need to learn more about this one. And I’m sure it’s being used in horrible ways and stuff, but. . . I don’t know.

**Inmn ** 38:48
Yeah. Because it’s like, it’s just an expansion of protecting people who are defending themselves, you know, right? And it’s like, in the goodest sense, in the goodest situation, it protects people. But the intent that it’s being crafted for, is to provide more protection for ranchers and farmers to shoot migrants for trespassing on their property.

**Margaret ** 39:20
Yeah, yeah, I see what you’re seeing.

**Inmn ** 39:22
That is the intent with which the bill is being explored.

**Margaret ** 39:26
No, I believe you. Yeah, that makes sense.

**Inmn ** 39:30
Yeah. That’s…that’s all I’ve got.

**Margaret ** 39:36
Well, that means it’s time for good news. Good news with Brooke

**Brooke ** 39:43
Are you two ready for some good news? Ready to cleanse our palates and feel joy again?

**Margaret ** 39:49
I’m sure I’ll come up with some way where the good news is not actually all that good. 

**Brooke ** 39:53
Whatever, you’re our Pollyanna. Madam positivity. Margaret, we look to you for hope.

**Margaret ** 40:04
Yeah. Okay, what do you got?

**Brooke ** 40:06
Alright, good things that have happened. Okay, so in February, the country of Greece legalized same sex marriage,

**Margaret ** 40:17
And they invented democracy. [Sarcastically]

**Brooke ** 40:20
That’s right. By a pretty good margin as well, much more than two thirds majority. So that’s cool. That’s wonderful. And then, kind of related, although, wow, maybe it’s not, but it’s like related in my mind, because, you know, leftist stuff. France became the first country in the world to put abortion rights into its constitution.

**Margaret ** 40:52
Okay, so they probably did it because they looked over across the ocean, and we’re like, "Oh, God, we should probably enshrine this." 

**Brooke ** 41:04
Right, which it’s been legal in the country since the 70s. But they, you know, putting it into their constitution is the thing, but yeah, first, and I mean, you know, France has written and rewritten their constitution more than once.

**Margaret ** 41:20
They’re pretty prone to revolution, traditionally,

**Brooke ** 41:23
Right? And like, willing to fucking edit the Constitution, like "What we can do that?"

**Inmn ** 41:29
Wait, you can decide that something wasn’t a great idea and then change it? You’re not beholden to things that happened. . . 

**Margaret ** 41:37
I hate defending the US legal system, but we have amendments. We have a system for this. It’s happened. How dare you put me in a position of defending the US government.

**Brooke ** 41:55
But we act as a society like it doesn’t happen. Like that’s what we do.

**Margaret ** 41:59
It’s true. And there’s that word like necrocracy, like ruled by the dead. And, and what’s funny is you’re like, "Ah, ha, ha, that’s like a fantasy thing." We’re a necrocracy, like, we’re ruled by laws made by dead people every single day. The Constitution was written by people who have been dead for a very long time.

**Brooke ** 42:22
Okay, I see you trying to ruin this good news, but you’re not going to do it, Margaret. No, no.

**Margaret ** 42:29
I have nothing negative to say about them enshrining abortion in their constitution. Great.

**Brooke ** 42:34
That’s great. So all the rest of the world, let’s go ahead and follow suit there. Thanks, as a woman and a queer. Good news coming out of Europe. Another bill that France is working on passed half of its legislative body, and they’re working on trying to curb fast fashion. Which I don’t know if y’all are familiar with fast fashion. Right. So yeah, you know, basically, that’s what it sounds like. It’s very wasteful and polluting. And the slightly sad part about it is that France is looking at doing this, so working on it, because they want to protect their high fashion industries from the influences of the fast fashion world. But as a fashion leader, the choices that they’re making here are, you know, have impacts on the fashion world in general. And it’s, you know, it’s an important statement to make too, and is ultimately good for the environment. If they can move that forward and slow that trend. That’s good. Yeah. So always look on. . . [singing]

**Margaret ** 43:46
No, so that is actually the perfect song to sing. And that’s because that song is most famously sung by people who have nails through their hands attached to boards of wood and are going to die. At the end of the Life of Brian, when they’re all being crucified, they sing "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life." This is not a visual medium, but the face that Inmn is making right now is truly for the history books.

**Inmn ** 44:13
I’ve never seen Life of Brian so I was like, "What the fuck are they talking about?"

**Margaret ** 44:19
Yeah, like one of the other crucified people is like, you know, "Just got to kind of think about it, just think about different ways," which is really just cognitive behavioral therapy in a nutshell, you know?

**Brooke ** 44:29
Find that YouTube clip of that. It’ll be the really highest bright side at the end of this episode.

**Margaret ** 44:37
Alright, anything else?

**Brooke ** 44:39
Yeah. Two more happy things in the world.

**Margaret ** 44:42
And then I got something to stick on at the end too. 

**Brooke ** 44:44
Yeah, you do. Okay, Japan has a program for child care support that has existed for a while and prioritizes, currently, the children of working parents, but starting in April, they’re expanding that program to a large portion of the country for childcare access for all, basically, kids that are between six months and two years having free childcare options available. It’s limited in the number of hours that people can get with free childcare. But it is open to working and non-working parents. And the long term goal is to, over the next couple of years, actually roll that out to the whole country. And long term, also expand the number of hours that people can access that. So as a parent who formerly had a small child and knows what a nightmare child care is, I am very happy to hear that they’re working on this. Thank you. Thank you, Japan for that program and for where you’re going with it. And in broader news, just an overall fun note about millennial parents, specifically dads, millennial dads doing a better job than previous generations, in many ways, like changing more diapers than ever before, taking more paternity leave. . . 

**Margaret ** 46:13
Doing the dishes without being explicitly asked to. That’s a really major one, right?

**Brooke ** 46:19
I don’t know about that. I was reading about parenting, but hey, that’s also…that’s great. That’s wonderful. And of course the, you know, the highest portion of stay at home male parents in modern history amongst millennial parents. So, millennial dads, thanks for stepping up and doing a good job. Yay, families.

**Margaret ** 46:50
Okay. So, Elon Musk has this Gigafactory in Berlin. I’m going with something positive here. 

**Brooke ** 46:58
I know, but then you say, "Elon Musk!" No, but then. 

**Margaret ** 47:01
But bad things are about to happen to him.

**Inmn ** 47:03
Yeah, it’s a cool thing.

**Brooke ** 47:04
Speaking of bad dads.

**Margaret ** 47:08
Well, he’s not amillennial. But he acts like. . .No, he doesn’t. 

**Brooke ** 47:12
But his partners are. 

**Margaret ** 47:14
Yeah, that’s true. Okay, so, Elon Musk has this Gigafactory five kilometers outside of Berlin in a forest. And it is for building Tesla’s, and people don’t like it. And it builds most of the Tesla’s…or more Tesla’s than anywhere else in Europe. And people don’t like it for a lot of reasons. One, Elon Musk is at war against labor unions in Europe and keeps running across that Europe actually has some decent labor union culture built into it right. And on March 5th, the entire Gigafactory was shut down for several days by an arson that targeted its electrical grid substation. Basically, someone burned an electrical pylon that connected it to the grid. The arson was claimed by the eco-anarchists group, Vulkangruppe, or volcano group, which has been doing eco-sabotage attacks since 2011. And their statement said, "Our fire stands against the lie of the green automobile. And it’s funny because like most of the news articles are like, "Well, that must be confusing because the automobile that’s green is the green one. It’s painted green. It has lithium batteries. Don’t pay attention to where the lithium batteries come from." But people in Europe, more than in the US, there’s obviously still a culture of cars there, but more people are kind of aware of that, like, actually, you can get around with trains and stuff really well. And that the idea of greening the automobile in the way that we’ll all get around is by having these individual multi-ton machines that take us places is not what’s gonna lead us into the future. Well, it is, but it’s gonna lead us into the bad future. But if we were imagining a good future, it would not be built around cars. Whether or not it would have cars is a totally separate question, but it would not be built around it. So this stopped work for several days, this fire, but also the next morning the stock price of Tesla dropped 4.5%, which is an awful lot of financial damage. Elon Musk himself flew out there and then made snarky comments on Twitter about things like "Oh, they are clearly mistaken because actually I care about the environment." And also there’s an occupation in the nearby forest that the Gigafactory is set to expand into and you can read an interview with those people on Crimethinc.com. If you go there you’ll find a discussion around the Gigafactory and resistance to it. And I also just want to kind of shout out that in the United States, or anyone listening to this, my default advice to people. . . When my friends are like "I don’t really know what to do with my life right now." Like, my default advice isn’t: go back and try and get another degree or a degree at all. My advice is go to the forest and join a forest defense camp, because eco-defense when you do–I’m not talking about volcano group stuff, I am talking about going and joining like thee sets and stuff–you join a community that needs volunteers and you join a community where you become empowered to make decisions and advance a thing as part of a collective process. And, and it’s kind of an all-consuming thing. It’s actually hard to dabble in sometimes, right? Because often people just go and live there. And there are a bunch of different action camps that I couldn’t immediately come up with, in the 10 minutes that it occurred to me right before we recorded that I should do this particular shout out, that are happening across the US at any given time. 

**Brooke ** 50:40
There’s one in Alabama.  

**Margaret ** 50:45
And there’s also a lot of resistance to the Mountain Valley Pipeline, the MVP. And a lot of people are  doing really amazing blockades where people are climbing into the pipelines. Inmn’s laughing. Did I get something wrong?

**Inmn ** 50:57
No, sorry. Just MVP. Most Valuable. . .Pipeline. Sorry. 

**Margaret ** 51:03
No, that’s okay. The other day on a different podcast, I said MVP, and then I was like, I think kids these days say, "GOAT", but then I didn’t say that in the podcast. That would be embarrassing to say a "kids these days thing," so I don’t worry. I didn’t. Totally didn’t say it now. Anyway. Okay. So my other big piece of good news is something that I’ve been watching happen, and was like thinking, oh, I think this is happening. And then I read a news article that was like, "Yes, this is happening." Prepper culture has reached a tipping point. Like we did it, y’all. Like not us three. But like, everyone listening. We did it. Prepper culture is no longer an overwhelmingly right-wing phenomenon. There’s a an article from Routers. Routers? From the news. Writers. [Pronouncing it differently] Reuters. And it says that the number of preppers has doubled since 2017. People who self-identify this way are up to about 20 million people in the United States. And much of that growth is coming from marginalized communities and progressives and leftists. And so there’s like, you know, it’s obviously not like, "Oh, hooray, everyone who’s listening. And if you’re marginalized, you can go to the prepper thing, and no one is going to be weird." Like, I can’t promise you that, right. But I can promise you that there are other people who are experiencing similar marginalization or have similar values as you. And for example, the subreddit, R/preppers. . . So Reddit is not like, where I immediately think, like, oh, everyone here is gonna be like, really not weird. But that subreddit, it’s great. I mean, it’s not totally lined up with everything I specifically believe and, you know, whatever. But it talks extensively about community preparedness. And it often kind of makes fun of the people who are like, "I can’t wait to have my bunker full of beans and bullets," or whatever, you know. And so that’s my favorite, final little good thing is that, compared to where this podcast started–as I say, three years ago, but it’s been four years, I just lost track of time–I wouldn’t have expected that to happen. And it is happening and the number of people who have bags and are like. . . You know, like my whole big thing is that, if you’re just starting, you should have a go bag, you should have about a five gallon container of water, depending how many people you live with, you get about about a bucket of food that lasts a really long time, and then slowly kind of build out your pantry a little. The number of people who do that basic stuff has just gone up so much. And it makes such a massive difference. Okay, I have one more. It’s the Margaret rants time of the podcast, apparently. I’ve been watching what’s happening in a lot of places that are in more immediate crises like Gaza, right? I mean, think about all the journalists who have been killed. There’s, you know, more journalists killed in Gaza than all of World War II, or whatever the fuck that statistic is, right. And you reach the point where you’re like, you could just go through your whole life and be like, I’m a doctor and learned all these doctor skills, but then you don’t even have a chance to use it. Because if the crisis kills 80%…or 20% of the people that you’re around, it could kill you. And then you’re like, "Oh, I spent all this time getting prepared. And then I died. So what good does that do?" Right? And that’s when I realized, individual preparedness almost isn’t good for the individual. The thing that individual preparedness is good for is [stress on "is"] community preparedness. Because, you know, a lot of people they’re like, "Well, I don’t want to get prepared because if I fill my house full of beans and bullets, and then the world ends and I’m alone, I don’t really care and that sucks and I don’t really want to go on anyway." Or, you know, "Oh, well, I’m just gonna die when the nuclear blast hits," or whatever it is, right? But when we think to ourselves, "I am part of a community, so me having basic medical skills means that if everyone is doing that, everyone is individually prepping, and I am hurt, someone around me is going to have basic medical skills. And so by getting myself individually prepared…I don’t know, I don’t quite know how to frame all of this yet. But this is this kind of epiphany where I’ve been like, "Oh, this is why individual preparedness doesn’t make sense to people, is because it’s not good for the individual." So if you’re hating on individual preparedness, it’s because you’re secretly being individualistic. And the best thing that you can do for the community is get your shit together. And that’s, that’s my final rant for the month.

**Inmn ** 55:50
Okay. Do you want to hear a really cool little story about some people who got their shit together and prepared their community? 

**Margaret ** 55:59
They built a house out of brick instead of straw. But they didn’t let their friends get eaten by the Big Bad Wolf, because they actually hung out in the brick house because they’re like, "Yo, wolves coming, and the guy wasn’t like, "Well, you gotta stay in the fucking house that’s made out…" Oh, you’re telling a story and I’m ranting. Go ahead.

**Inmn ** 56:15
I loved it. Proverbial tale. So I couldn’t. . . So I challenged everyone to come up with a good thing, because I think we should be talking about cool things that happened too, instead of all the doom and gloom, and then I failed to find a cool thing that happened over the last month. Not because a cool thing didn’t happen but because I just couldn’t find something that spoke to me. But I did come across this little blurb about this really amazing group that I didn’t know about, and it feels very, very relevant to stuff we talk about on the show. Y’all ever heard of the Chrysanthemum Flower? Like the group? Not the flower.

**Margaret ** 57:02
Wait, it sounds familiar. But no, let’s just go with no. 

**Inmn ** 57:07
So the Chrysanthemum Flower was a secret feminist organization in Palestine that resisted Israeli occupation in Jaffa before the 1948 Nakba. The organization was started as a community mutual aid group, which was formed by two sisters, Mohiba and Nariman Khusid. And what they did was they started this secret feminist organization whose goal was to organize their community. They bought weapons and relief supplies for their community. It transformed into an armed organization, when Mohiba watched a child get killed by a British sniper, and she’s quoted as saying, "That day I returned home and decided to take revenge." Nariman, at one point, led an attack at night where after, you know, a lot male squadrons were like, "No, don’t go do this attack." She was like, "We’re going to do this fucking attack." And she led an attack where they rolled up on this Israeli Zionist force squadron and she shot the commander, killed him with one shot, and then the entire squadron just threw down their weapons and surrendered to this group of armed women. It’s so fucking cool. They, the Chrysanthemum Flower, defended Jaffa when it was being invaded. And the group unfortunately ended when the city fell and the ethnic cleansing of that part of Palestine began. Mohiba was literally driven to the sea. But she eventually escaped to Egypt, where she settled and returned to teaching. And she died of natural causes in 2000. And yeah, a shout out to the Chrysanthemum Flower for preparing their community for devastation. And yeah, I don’t know, everyone go out and do that.

**Margaret ** 59:26
Yeah, or whatever. And shout "Wolverines!" while you do it, because the real Red Dawn was the Nakba.

**Margaret ** 59:41
Well, that about does it for This Month in the Apocalypse. Catch us next month when we talk about. . . the apocalypse. And in the meantime, catch us every week where we talk about how to live with the apocalypse with all of our usual content. And if you want to support this Podcast, you can do it by supporting Strangers in a Tangled Wilderness, which is our publisher. We put out a bunch of different stuff, including a bunch of other podcasts, including a podcast called Strangers in a Tangled Wilderness. It comes out once a month and includes our featured zine that we’ve put up on our Patreon. As well as The Spectacle. it used to be called Anarcho Geek Power Hour, but then people were like, "But The Spectacle is better." And then it changed because that’s the kind of. . . because we didn’t have to amend our constitution to do it. You like that callback? And if you like nerd stuff and dislike the Constabulary, then it’s possible that The Spectacle is for you. And you can support us on Patreon. You can support us on patreon.com/strangersinatangledwilderness. We pay our transcribers and we pay our audio engineers. And we all hold out the long held dream of getting paid as hosts. But we’re not there yet. But, your support makes so much possible. And if you don’t have any money to support us there, just don’t. That’s fine. Just keep listening to our shit. Tell people about it. Or don’t. Do whatever you want. But in particular, we would like to thank Amber, Ephemeral, and Appalachian Liberation Library. Portland’s Hedron Hackerspace, Boldfield, E, Patolli, Eric, Buck, Julia, Catgut, Marm, Carson, Lord Harken, Trixter, Princess Miranda, Ben Ben, Anonymous, Funder, Janice & Odell, Aly, paparouna, Milica. Boise Mutual Aid, theo, Hunter, S.J., Paige, Nicole, David, Dana, Chelsea, Staro, Jenipher, Kirk, Chris, Mic Aiah, and the immortal, the deity, Hoss the dog. That’s it and hope you all are doing as well as you can with everything that’s happening. 

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