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Yesterday edrie wrote a wonderful but heartbreaking diary that is still, deservedly, on the rec list.

I want to make it clear that I am in no way challenging or disagreeing with edrie or what she has written. I respect her and rec'd the diary because I think that now is an important time to discuss this, while community rules are being drafted.

edrie writes from personal experience and I completely respect that. That's normally how I write, too. But I'd like to have practical rules and/or guidelines established for our community on this topic. edrie addresses the humanitarian aspect of fundraisers which, again, I don't disagree with.

But in the interest of this community, I think we need a more even-handed approach. Something between "ban them all," which a very, very small minority has suggested, and "people need help, let them seek it here," which is a somewhat more popular opinion, and one that I generally share.

Nuance below the fold.

For the sake of simplicity, let's say that this is a balance between the humanitarian in all of us and the need to protect our community from scams. I understand that it goes beyond that, but I don't want to write a treatise today.

I've been here for several years and have seen plenty of scams, but as the economy has deteriorated, the requests for help have increased. I think that is a normal thing to happen. Many of us are in tough situations, and too many of us are in dire straits. When a friend needs help, I consider it an honor if I have the ability to jump in and help. Sometimes I can't, and I try to not feel too bad about that.

Just as often, though, I see pleas for help that, frankly, seem less than sincere. Whether it's from a long time member here or a newbie, something will ping my BS detector and it drives me crazy to see the community respond so willingly. I love you all for being so kind and generous, but it still peeves me to see people that I care about being taken for a ride.

So how do we create a community that is at once caring and kind but not an easy target? That is what I think needs to be addressed when the new community rules are written, and what I think should be discussed with more brainstorming than emotion.

grover wrote a great comment that summed up a few things I would like to see:

1. Limits on frequency (this is a big one for me)
2. Some sort of maximum limit.
3. When the maximum is hit, the diary is taken down.
But the comment also hit on something that I fear:
"Immediate need" fundraisers really should be immediate need, such as car accidents or other sudden incidents. Most if the time, "immediate need" is lack of planning or not wanting to face up to facts. I don't go sound cruel, but that panicking tone in that sort of diary makes me far more skeptical; and from what others have posted publically, I get the feeling that's part of the issue.
I don't want to kick people when they're down, but I believe that a lot of times, when you read someone's story, you can see the exact moment where they went wrong. Oftentimes when they are that low it's considered inapropro to criticize those actions. And I don't want to bring the mistakes up anymore than the next person, but it is kind of a challenge to see people asking for help if you don't have confidence that they won't be needing it again in a couple of weeks.

So in a case like this, we have two things to consider. One, how do we help this person in the short term? Two, how do we help them in the long term?

We can meet their immediate needs today by giving them a leg up- something I'm not opposed to- but we can help them more if we then concentrate on getting them the long term help that they will need. People will often post a diary saying they need help now, and others will direct them to local resources that can help. If those are ignored, it should be a red flag to all of us.

At the same time, we should be willing to help someone who obviously needs it today while also helping them navigate the choppy waters of poverty in order to prepare for the long run, and making sure that we help them follow through with it.

I know firsthand how dehumanizing and draining poverty can be. It can be hard to pick up the phone and ask for help, knowing that your voice is going to crack as soon as you hear a voice on the other line. It's easier to write a diary behind a wall of anonymity and let no one see your facial expression.

I've done this recently- I reached out to someone and they asked me to call them. I found myself unable to, even though I've talked to several kossacks by phone before. I turned down the offer because I knew what I would be told would be too hard to hear.

At that point, there was really no saving me, right? I wanted help but as soon as it was given I ran away from it.

We need to hold people accountable in that way, somehow.

Next comes the vetting part.

This is where I think it gets tricky.

I think that we should have a fundraising group that is dedicated to just that, and I'm more than willing to be a part of this. I know we have a group dedicated to fundraising, but I think it would benefit all of us if we could set up a group that vets people and their requests.

This will do two things, both of which are beneficial:

A) It could be semi-anonymous. The community wouldn't necessarily need to know who the kossack is that is asking for help, and the group (which should, itself, be thoroughly vetted- no active participants in flame wars, no single-issue people, etc, this needs to be expanded upon).

B) It would give the beneficiary a resource to turn to when they need additional help. They could come to the group and say they need help with something, and the community group could help them find local resources and help them follow up with the things they need to do for long-term success and/or relief.

We could have sponsors for each person in need. I'll take this person in the custody dispute and help them get through it short- and long-term, and someone else will sponsor the person with a drug addiction that just got evicted. The group could draw up a plan as a team and then have one person act as a "case worker" for that person.

This may sound silly, but, again, I know what it's like to be lost in the trenches of poverty. We want people to pick themselves up by the bootstraps, let's give them some bootstraps!

I know how amazing this community can be because I've had so many people here help me through so many things. I know we can find a balance that allows us to actively help others while at the same time weeding out the scams.

I don't want anyone to have a hardened heart over scams that have happened here. I want us to learn and grow as a community and produce as many success stories as possible.

So, what say you? How about a DailyKos Department of Health and Welfare?


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Comment Preferences

  •  You raise some important questions - recc'ed in (15+ / 0-)

    the hopes there is good discussion.

    Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

    by Wee Mama on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:15:35 PM PDT

    •  That's all I want, is a good discussion (6+ / 0-)

      We know kos is listening right now, so let's take advantage of it!

      I'm not wedded to my view. But I would like a bit of transparency.

      P.S. I am not a crackpot.

      by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:17:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Agree and so did I for that reason. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BoiseBlue, Wee Mama

      I've always valued the fundraising for crisis or extraordinary circumstances as one of the most important parts of community, but times have and continue to change quickly so it's always good to discuss how to best meet the needs of our membership.

      Actually, I would like to see all of the issues addressed in the tentative list of site rules examined in a similar way.

      It's almost impossible to get much reasoned input in open threads which become half snark, mini-fights, nostalgic rememberances -- real and romanticized --, and totally random comments that don't seem to relate to anything.

      While those can be fun, IF many people are concerned about site rules, as seems to be the case, then I would think it would be important for more well thought out diaries addressing the specifics.

      It probably won't happen, but it could, and it could also alleviate some of the silliest of abuses which impede coherence.

      •  More diaries (6+ / 0-)

        Kos encouraged additional diaries to be written abut "rules" issues, and said he would take all of the feedback into accunt before issuing a final version. So if you have specific potential rules you think warrant deeper discussion this would be the best time to get it out there.

        “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

        by Catte Nappe on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:56:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, I would hope to see that. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Catte Nappe, Wee Mama

          My chief concern with site rules has always been that whatever is finally decided needs to be all inclusive, including any from the past that were created incidentally if they are still operable, and that all members have to check off that they have read them.

          A great many problems and disputes arise because so many members come and go, sometimes for years, that they don't realize changes have been made.  The other is trying to locate what one or another members of site management said in some thread on some topic at some time.

          I would be happy if we could ever get that far.

  •  can I hold a twenty? (3+ / 0-)

    common sense says don't give to people blindly.

    I sing praises in the church of nonsense, but in my heart I'm still an atheist, demanding sense of all things.

    by jbou on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:23:46 PM PDT

  •  On the whole, good idea (8+ / 0-)

    But don't be too hard on the unplanned for thing. I had no idea what cremation cost when the police were here the morning Jim died, and Forest Lawn is absolutely a respectable mortuary (no, we didn't have any insurance), but the $3500 bill was a definite shocker and I'm just happy I had the money available when I needed it. I'm still scrambling to replace it, and the fact I'm teaching 15 units this fall is going to help me do that, but don't think I didn't think about asking the Kos community for help on that.

    Technically, it's, as grover said

    lack of planning or not wanting to face up to facts.
    I suppose I should have had some idea about this, but realistically, why would I?  He wasn't supposed to die at 66.

    Seneca Falls, Selma, Stonewall

    by Dave in Northridge on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:26:59 PM PDT

    •  I think most people understand that, Dave (4+ / 0-)

      You know how much I love and value my partner, but if something happened tomorrow, it would pull the rug out from underneath me, and I probably would have to turn to this community for help.

      There is a user here that I otherwise respect and rec often, but who took to asking the community for help with rent every single month.

      I understand what a pain in the ass it is to move, but if you can't afford your apartment, you DO need to downgrade, as painful as that is.

      I'd be all for giving said person money to help pay a deposit and first months rent at a new place. But at some point, they're just not accepting that they have to downgrade and that is where it becomes problematic.

      That's why I think having a more involved group would be a good thing. Okay, you bring home 2K a month and your rent is 1.5K. That's not sustainable, we've got to find a new place that you can afford.

      P.S. I am not a crackpot.

      by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:34:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You're quoting grover out of context, Dave. (3+ / 0-)

      The preceding sentence:

      "Immediate need" fundraisers really should be immediate need, such as car accidents or other sudden incidents.
      She said there are actual legitimate emergencies. Yours was obviously one.

      © grover

      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 02:07:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think you are missing something (8+ / 0-)

    regarding immediate need.

    We as a culture have been conditioned to pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps. In retrospect it is easy to see where the burden became too much. But when daily the poor are called takers in the media by unchecked heartless republitrolls doing anything but ask for help is the normal response.

    There is also the dynamic of being told there is a social safety net that in reality is nothing more than waterlogged life preserver several miles out at sea. So people try to access services that in most communities is nothing more than a daisy chain of phone numbers as one agency refers you to the next one down the phone list.

    Penalizing people that don't ask soon enough should not even be a consideration IMO.

    •  I am sorry that my words reflected that attitude (5+ / 0-)

      It is in no way how I view life and not how I judge people.

      As I've said, I've been in the trenches of poverty. I know how it feels and it is excruciating. And I know that a lot of times, day to day, we have to do things that are less than wise, and we know they are less than wise, but we have no choice.

      For me, it was paying my power bill over rent because I knew I couldn't be evicted for ninety more days and I was more concerned with staying warm. I didn't have many other options and I didn't qualify for most welfare at the time (for some reason, the state sneers at16 year olds who live alone. Go figure.)

      What I'm saying is that if we can form a group that actually provides long term help for someone, it would be a good thing. I'm not calling for an Inquisition, I'm asking that we have a mechanism in place to keep people from falling through the cracks the way so many of us do.

      P.S. I am not a crackpot.

      by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:39:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  A very valid point. (8+ / 0-)

      My husband has cerebral palsy and if I had a dime for every time someone told him, " There are programs out there to help you (fill in the blank)" we would be rich, rich, rich.  Sure, those programs are all there, but they are woefully underfunded.  Plus, it is a full-time job to keep track of the byzantine and capricious rules and forms and paperwork.  One agency he applied to required 37 pages of photocopied documents along with their multi-page application. It might not sound like much, but that was expensive to arrange and post!  

      It can be super easy to slip under before any real help can be found.

      Metaphors be with you.

      by koosah on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:54:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think, Horace, (6+ / 0-)

      I could have worded the immediate need comment more artfully. I didn't realize it would end up in the body of a diary, and I was standing in the yard, monitoring dogs as I typed.

      What I meant is that too often, we get pleas on the 28th of the minth that someone is going to be evicted on the 31st.

      It's difficult when I see these to know how to process them. There IS community help for rent available, first of all. But second, just healing this user means that Kossacks are suddenly being forced to make split-second decisions about whether they want to help.

      If they do and don't have PayPal, they have have to incur extra fees to priority mail checks or money orders. So if the request is legitimate, then folks are contributing more than they need to had the user simply raised their hand for help a little sooner.

      And as Im sure you know, forcing people to make snap decisions is a well-used tactic by salespeople... And by conmen and women.

      You are often the first one to post useful information about where local help can be found. I know it's often tiring and unproductive. But that's usually realized before the 27th.

      Giving the community more than three days notice would inspire more confidence. Actually, posting a diary early on simply outlining how complicated and unwelcoming the system is would be useful. There might be helpful info given then. Folks might suggest a fundraising diary THEN (and avoid all the stress). It serves a function to let us know that the safety net has gaping holes. And it lays a foundation for a future fundraiser.

      I dunno. Just some ideas.

      No one has to prove anything about themselves to me. and I certainly understand stuff happens on an emergency basis. But some of those  high-stress rush diaries set off my spidey senses

      © grover

      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:57:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ugh, sorry for all the typos. I touched post (4+ / 0-)

        While I was proofing. I hope my meaning gets across...

        © grover

        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:59:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I'm sorry I quoted you in the diary (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        And you're getting grief for it :-(

        P.S. I am not a crackpot.

        by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 03:39:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Nah, it's fine. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BoiseBlue, Villanova Rhodes, edrie

          You're good.

          Scammers are predators.

          I don't look away when I see someone that I think is being scammed in real life. Why would I do that here?

          I know some people are taking this personally. But I contribute to fundraisers when I can and when I believe they are legit.  (Often, they seem legit, but our finances prevent us from donating. So lack of a donation on any diary shouldn't be construed as anything.) I give to people who seem to be homeless or jobless in my community all the time. But I can look them in the eye. I see them day after day. I have a sense who they are. That's all I ask of the fundraising diaries here.

          I'm fiercely protective of this community. I've seen a lot of people fall hook, line and sinker for personas that weren't real. That HURT people.

          I'm glad we do what we do. But I don't want predators living unfettered among us.

          If my comment helped you get your diary jump started, Im glad. If people don't like me because of it, especially people I had previously been on friendly terms with, well, I guess it just shows that we really don't know people as well as we think we do.

          © grover

          So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

          by grover on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 04:07:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You speak for me :) (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Wee Mama, Villanova Rhodes

            All of the above is exactly my point. I am very giving IRL and I don't intend to stop. It's no problem for me to drop a ten in someone's pocket when they need help and even when they don't. I figure standing outside in the sun holding a sign is hard enough, why bother harassing them about it?

            But as you state, it's not so easy to determine these things online and I'd like to have some sort of mechanism to stop the obvious scams.

            It seems that people are comfortable with the idea of being scammed if it stops someone else from falling off the edge, which means I hold a minority opinion. That's fine. But I can still hope that we'd be a bit more discerning than that. If nothing else, that we would shout down or HR anyone who expresses skepticism.

            P.S. I am not a crackpot.

            by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 04:13:49 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  boise, how about a compromise - (0+ / 0-)

              if there were an ombudgsman(woman) who could do some research to see if the suspicions are accurate before accusing online - then that might work... but the ombudsman(woman) has to be a neutral party - one who can research and find whether the claims made are valid.  perhaps, that person could even talk to the one in need.

              i keep thinking of how glen the plumber worked behind the scenes until he had the proof needed to expose the scammer.

              if several kossacks raise legitimate concerns, then the ombudsman(woman) could intervene and ask for further information.

              i've done it before and found the person i asked was more than willing to talk - actually i've done this multiple times - and it has always worked well.

              EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

              by edrie on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 12:30:13 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  I think we're mostly adults here (6+ / 0-)

    and as such we don't need rules & regulations to help us decide who is worthy to help or who can ask for help, how often or how much.  

    If someone doesn't want to give then don't.  If someone has questions then ask them.  If you don't like fundraising diaries then don't read them.

    Unfortunately, I've spent more time on the receiving end of fundraising lately but I help when I can.  I ran a charity for over 10 years & I know that it is extremely hard to ask for help & I am a believer in making it as easy as possible.  Treat people how you want to be treated.  A bit of kindness & compassion is as valuable as money.

  •  Nobody forces anyone to click on a diary (5+ / 0-)

    including community fundraisers.  Nope, the pootie folks don't come to anyones house either and take control of a computer to open it up to pootie pictures.  

    What started as a political blog has grown and evolved into a community.  You can come here and learn about the weather, astronomy, climate change, and almost any other topic under the sun.  That's a good thing to many of us.

    It's the development of a community that some folks have a problem with, whether it's concern over pooties on the rec list or fundraising appeals anywhere.  And that's where people need a reminder that a community is here.

    If people don't like pooties, fundraisers, non-political information, or anything else, they should stay away from those diaries.  And, in terms of fundraising, as with all things we should have the freedom and responsibility that we exercise with our mail fundraising appeals and telemarketing calls.

    And as to fundraisers, help if you want, provide moral support if you want, or ignore the diary completely if you want.  It's your choice and mine as it should be.

    There already is class warfare in America. Unfortunately, the rich are winning.

    by Puddytat on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:50:25 PM PDT

    •  I think that yours is the more popular opinion (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Puddytat, funluvn1

      And will therefore most likely be written into the new and improved rules and guidelines of the community.

      I just think it's a good time to have this discussion and I wanted to throw my two cents in. I have a perfectly calibrated BSmeter and I don't like when it's pinged.

      That's all.

      P.S. I am not a crackpot.

      by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:55:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That's true, but scamming has been a problem (6+ / 0-)

      in the past, and kos has wavered on banning personal solicitation of funds for that reason.  This is waaay back, but for what it's worth:

      I hate to draw clear lines. I prefer the community moderate itself. And really, the libertarian in me says people should have a right to be scammed if they refuse to be discerning, skeptical individuals. I'm no one's protector or hand-holder. I've got my hands full on that front with my growing family.

      But given the last solicitation for money, I was struck by 1) how uncritical people where when asked to give to someone who really isn't a well-known member of the community, and 2) how hostile they were to those who urged caution. And it wasn't hard for people doing some quick googling to cast doubts on the veracity of the claims.

      So do I need to create a clear rule banning such personal appeals?

      More recently:
      I obviously stay out of any fundraising for other members. It makes me nervous. That's opposed to fundraising for a charity or candidate -- either of which is easy enough to verify.

      Rather than me having to verify people, which makes me so nervous that I'll likely never do it (for reasons stated above), perhaps it's up to the community to do its own vetting if they decide someone is worthy of help. And if that individual is above board, then he or she should have no problem sharing that info with the community.

      But that would be on you guys.

      I lean toward this, too, although it comes with a built-in problem: it's very difficult for skeptical community members to raise questions about solicitation for funds, especially if the reasons for that solicitation are due to what the diarist says is a sudden and tragic situation.   You ask a question, you're liable to spend the rest of the day in the hidden comments.  That instinct protects users who are emotionally distraught... and it's also a scammer's paradise.

      This would be my own preferred addition to any community standard on personal fundraising: when it does happen, there should be a kibosh on HRing people who ask reasonable questions.  Yes, it may be really uncouth to question users in their time of need, but if they're asking for money, there has to be some acknowledgment that users need to be free to ask questions in return.

      I can imagine that's going to be an unpopular and unlikely solution in practice, though.  

      Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

      by pico on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 03:26:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  As I mentioned yesterday (0+ / 0-)

    I am selling 4th amendment protections for the Greenwaldians who are so concerned with their "rights".  Look, the president promised to keep us safe, not free.  I read that right here.  

    So I can guarantee their return for the low price of $10, provided I get at least one trillion dollars to begin my campaign of buying congress, the senate, the supreme court, and the president.  

    Since there is no balance between liberty and safety, and if the people had to choose, they'd choose safety, there is no other way to guarantee freedom.  

    My guarantee offers a full refund, if, when the account reaches one trillion, you do not have your rights restored.  Also, my car is getting pretty ratty, and I could use some 23" wheels as a fee for managing your freedom.  

    Bad things aren't bad! And anyway, there's mitigation!

    by Nada Lemming on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 01:53:59 PM PDT

  •  I like the idea of a group that would do some (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    investigation into the request.  It could be voluntary but I would certainly be more likely to give to someone who was willing to go through some verification process.  If people aren't willing to do so that could just be another factor people could take into consideration when deciding to give or not.  If I were in need and asking others for support I would have no problem letting a legitimate group look into my request.  

    "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

    by stellaluna on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 02:29:26 PM PDT

  •  Counterpoint (8+ / 0-)

    Responding to your ideas from a decades long career in social services.

    You seem to be proposing a group that would vet requests and help organize a plan - even a long term one - for support and recovery from whatever situation brought the kossack to express their need.

    That is actually "case management" and is a lot of work. It also puts the group in a position of owning some responsibility, fairly or unfairly, for outcomes. Worst case,  the reciipient holds the group, or selected members, responsible for less than ideal outcomes. The community holds the group responsible for poor vetting if the outcome is poor, or new information surfaces. On that I have in my mind a picture of a fund raising effort that was undertaken and endorsed by known and respected kossacks. In due time one of those endorsing began to smell "scam" and ended up e-mailing people to withohold support. Such things can get very messy and be damaging to all concerned, and the community as a whole.

    Loss of community insights and involvement. If there is an established "group" that becomes responsible, other community members can too easily let that go. Send money (or not) and leave the group to do the heavy lifting. It reduces the serendipitous chance of a kossack who just happens to be in the right place at the tight time to directly provide help, info, a job, a pick up and moving crew, a contact with a local organization, etc. I've seen all those things happen, but the chances deccrease if people have the option to let "There's a group for that" handle it.

    In the spirit of KISS, I think the rules should simply spell out some basic standards that already seem to be understood. Your fundraiser will go better if a kossack known to and respected by the group vouches for you - and the more direct knowledge of you and your situation they have, the better.  By all means include the suggestion that a last minute desperation Hail Mary may leave you short, when a few weeks advance notice allows folks to get together money or resources for you. Of course anyone posting a need should be prepared to meet reasonable requests for information - copies of a bill, a number to contact the vet who will do the surgery, or the mechanic who will replace the engine, or etc. Wouldn't hurt in some cases to have the option of the payment going direct to such providers, too. The "rules" should probably also have some straight talk about "site celebrity". A popular diarist who has been around a long time, posts frequently, comments and interacts a lot, etc. is going to get a much better response than a less visible kog. (This true whether that person is the one in need, or the one vouching for someone in need).  I agree also, it get's iffy to ask the community to pitch in for someone who is not a member of the community unless it is a charitable organization that can be checked out by interested parties on-line, via Guide Star, etc.

    Just some quick thoughts

    “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

    by Catte Nappe on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 02:32:18 PM PDT

  •  Thanks for this, BoiseBlue (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I'm pretty much a lurker these days (although I was a more active participant back in the early days). Edrie's  diary really touched me. I recently donated to a kossack because, one, the story hit home, and two...and importantly, the kossack that wrote the request is a long term member that I have great respect for. This group you propose is a fantastic idea and I would love to be involved. Please kosmail me or put me on a list or something.

  •  Hey Boise! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BoiseBlue, Villanova Rhodes

    A quick HI! Hope you're doing well.

    I get what you are saying.  I also think I get what you are implying while you are also quite diplomatic in what you are not saying.

    Yes.  Some very well loved community members here are, in my opinion, willing to allow this community to take care of their situations.  The community chooses to keep doing so.  Therefore, that is the reality.  My tingling sense of some here finds me never even clicking on their diaries, due to knowing that they will be somehow fundraising somewhere in that diary, or will be very soon in a follow up.  Still.  The community has continued to support them.  Perhaps my reading of the situation was incorrect.  Highly unlikely, due to the obviousness (to me alone) of the whole thing, yet I've been wrong before.

    I like your outline of what you think might be a good step forward, as opposed to just shutting that whole thing down!  I also see a lot of opportunity, as you stated, to do a lot of good.  

    Not an easy one, is it?  I'm glad you stepped up and brought a different view point.  

    Someone once asked me why do you always insist on taking the hard road? and I replied why do you assume I see two roads?

    by funluvn1 on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 02:44:10 PM PDT

    •  Thanks! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      funluvn1, Wee Mama, Villanova Rhodes

      And I'm glad you stopped by. I don't see you around here much anymore and I miss you.

      Perhaps my reading of the situation was incorrect.  Highly unlikely, due to the obviousness (to me alone) of the whole thing, yet I've been wrong before.
      I think this is the reality: some of us know some things aren't legit, but I'm seeing that the community is reluctant to change how we're operating.

      I'm okay with that. I just wanted to throw this out there.

      P.S. I am not a crackpot.

      by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 03:44:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We are on the same page, I believe (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Putting it out there to consider, especially since you come from a position of personal experience is important.

        I've missed you too.  Lost my voice for awhile.  Working on clearing my throat, so to speak.  The puns....

        Someone once asked me why do you always insist on taking the hard road? and I replied why do you assume I see two roads?

        by funluvn1 on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 04:27:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  all of this reminds me of the "moocher"cry (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    when people need public assistance. clearly, they did something wrong and are lazy, or they wouldn't need help.

    Has DailyKos been run down to the ground by people who ask for money to often? Is the DailyKos community shrinking to nothing because of "scams"?

    one bad apple don't spoil the whole bunch.....

    It's very easy to look at someone's situation from the outside and have 20/20 hindsight and be judgmental about what they should have done differently.

    hope no one here who is so critical of people getting into bad positions is ever imperfect.

    You should all know that you've made every person who has ever received assistance here feel unwelcome. and I have been through this debate before where the message is very clear that no one should ever need help or let it be known that they do here.

    Building Community. Creating Jobs. Donating Art to Community Organizations. Support the Katalogue

    by UnaSpenser on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 03:24:03 PM PDT

    •  In no way do I want to make people feel unwelcome (4+ / 0-)

      As I said in the diary, I know what poverty is like. I don't want to crush people who need help; the opposite is true.

      As for speaking up on scams, I quit doing that a long time ago because I usually get nothing but scorn from the community for doing so. Yet I've never once been wrong about a scam.

      I would think it would be beneficial to this site to let the skeptics voice their opinions before things get out of hand. What I'm hearing is that people are reluctant to do that.

      That's fine if that's what the community decides, but I had to throw an alternate idea out there. It's been poorly received and I get the message.

      P.S. I am not a crackpot.

      by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 03:48:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I do think that if someone sees some evidence (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        that a scam is happening and they feel moved to do something about it, they can do some behind the scenes work to produce evidence.

        I can see that you mean well.

        This isn't the first time this subject has been debated by the community and I'm sure it won't be the last. I simply wonder if people think about the sub-signal sent to those who may end up in need. I know that I will never feel comfortable getting support again. (Not that it's comfortable in the first place. But, if a community feels it is a good activity for the whole of community one lives with the humiliation. When it is already humiliating and you have community members trying to end the practice, complaining about it and labeling it bad for the community, one just wants to slither away and not show her face again.

        I know that the few times a scam has happened get a lot of notoriety, but I'm guessing the percentage is less than 1 of all the fundraisers that occur.

        We regulate businesses and organizations who have the power to do harm. Regulating cries for help seems like a unwise place to put our energies when it comes to being concerned about justice and community health.

        Building Community. Creating Jobs. Donating Art to Community Organizations. Support the Katalogue

        by UnaSpenser on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 04:05:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I see your points and don't disagree (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          UnaSpenser, Villanova Rhodes

          But I think it's important to hash this out while kos is getting ready to rewrite the rules.

          However, it's not that easy to produce evidence that something is a scam. The last time I got involved in one I used the diarist's own words to illustrate that at best, she was very confused as to what was going on in her own life and at worst it was all an outright lie. There was one contradiction after another.

          But I had no evidence beyond that, and there are people here who believed her story for convoluted reasons I won't get in to here.

          What choice did I have at that point except to just walk away and watch the scam take place? She walked away with almost $700 that night and was never heard from again. Granted, that's a relatively small amount, but how much more do you think she would have received had there not been skeptics in the diary?

          This is the sort of thing I want to prevent. From what I am beginning to understand, the community is okay with taking that risk. That's fine, but I don't have to like it. And, at least for now, I can voice my objections.

          P.S. I am not a crackpot.

          by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 04:24:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Seems like you did what you could. And that's (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BoiseBlue, Wee Mama, Villanova Rhodes

            an important role in the community.

            Speaking up is valuable.

            After that, all you can do is feel that you did your best and be content that the community is feeling ok.

            Hugs, Una

            Building Community. Creating Jobs. Donating Art to Community Organizations. Support the Katalogue

            by UnaSpenser on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 05:11:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  It's a paradox (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Wee Mama, Villanova Rhodes

            Are we our brothers' keeper?

            For some that means thinking the best of people and reaching into their pockets to help to the extent they are able.
            For some that means alerting our community that the appeal is not making sense and trying to prevent them from wasting their money (and having their good heartedness abused).

            The thing is, we all have such different standards for these things, how we approach them.

            Picture that guy at the intersection with the "Hungry, please help" sign. Some will grab a couple bucks out of their wallet and hand it to him. Some will grab granola bar and bottle of water they keep on hand for such purposes. Some will point out that it's too likely this guy will collect the money and hit the nearest liquor store. Others respond - 'so what. If that brings him a little comfort in his bleak existence, who am I to judge?". Me, I'm in the pack waiting for the light to change. I know this dude. I know that after rush hour he will hop the bus, go home to his apartment, shower, change into clean clothes, and call our for a pizza. All paid for by his "take" during his "shifts" at the intersection. Do I leap out of my car and run up and down the line with a sign saying - "He's scamming you.!".  No. I just keep my wallet closed. And when opportunity allows educate the public about the different ways they can help such people who are truly in need, and minimize the enabling and scamming.

            “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

            by Catte Nappe on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 05:51:04 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  i know boiseblue didn't mean to do this, but i (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BoiseBlue, Wee Mama, Fineena

          am in agreement with you.

          when remembrance stepped up to keep sani from being thrown out of the barn, she posted where we were - and that i had added stuff to be sold to try to raise the money.

          i felt like i couldn't ask for "donations" i wanted to EARN the help.

          i ran out of merchandise - have posted a bit more as i finish the orders - but only raised less than half owed - the rest is due 12 days.  i can stall it if i get another half and they see i'm working on it - but with these discussions, i'm not comfortable even bringing up the stressers.

          i'm looking for another solution - one that costs a fee to raise the money and even then - i HATE it.  i HATE that my sister has put me in this position.

          i HATE that she refused to resolve the issue, that she put mom's house up with a realtor for $50 grand less than it is worth to ensure i wouldn't sign off on selling it (why not? because after all the fees and back taxes which she deliberately underpayed without telling me, i would be lucky to see $40k after the sale.  she is sitting on a ton of phoney bills to take off the "top")

          i HATE that i am left to beg like a dog for help - even if it is by selling things i make.

          i HATE my life and this discussion makes me hate it even more.

          i now boiseblue has good intentions and that many here, like adam b are worried about the site - but i worry more about it when it makes people feel humiliated for being in situations NOT of their doing.

          the last thing i need is for someone to try to "manage" my life like i'm a dottering old fool incapable of controlling my own life.

          i did not plan for my sister to be a forger and commit fraud.  i was blindsided - and heartbroken by it.  now, i will end up spending a massive amount to recover a little - but if i don't, i'll never see a penny.  she has already stated that i "took everything i wanted" - and listed items like my own childhood dolls and items that i have no idea what they are.

          she lied.

          she stole.

          she embezzled.

          and i am left to grovel to keep my horse safe.  without him, as i told my vet, i have absolutely NO reason to be here - but my sister knows that and that is why she delays, in hopes i'll throw in the towel.

          and, believe me, if i weren't so damned angry, that would be an alternative!

          EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

          by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 05:34:01 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Honey, please don't think that I am doubting (0+ / 0-)

            your story or that I think you are unworthy. I am in favor of community help, I just want there to be some limits on what is asked.

            You are transparent and honest- you're one of those people that it's an honor to be able to help.

            But please understand that for every one of you, there is another scammer. I don't want our default to be something that is damaging to this community.

            Darling, I would give to you in a heartbeat, without reservation. I am not asking for that to be taken away. I'm suggesting that maybe those members of this community who aren't so well established get a more thorough vetting before we open our wallets.

            If we don't stop that from happening, then eventually ALL fundraising diaries will be banned out of necessity. I'd like us to be proactive on this topic so that we don't lose our humanitarian instincts, but still have mechanism in place to stop the scams, of which there have been too many.

            P.S. I am not a crackpot.

            by BoiseBlue on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 05:46:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  and, the scammers hurt me when this conversation (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              is started.  unaspensor -  me - we are collateral damage - we feel that we are viewed as scammers because these "rules" make us so.

              before i ever needed help, i objected to "rules" because i am NOT a dottering old fool soon parted with my money (except where it came to my sister).

              i came within a millisecond of deleting the link to my etsy shop - i know you don't mean this to affect me, but having been the target of some really ugly remarks about being the "jewelry saleswoman" when my shop was empty for almost a year, this DOES hurt me - it hurts una - it hurts us by being thrown in the "group" that has to be screened.

              as others have said, no one has to contribute - everyone is free to pass by on anything they are uncomfortable with - but you are an exception - your bs meter is probably as sharp as mine - but there are those who use this discussion to target and drive away people they disagree with.

              those who have made the ugly, hurtful comments do so as a tactic to "win" a political argument by cheating - by their own form of "scamming" - they are who are pushing this discussion - they are the sadists i referred to in my diary.

              i think you have unwittingly stepped into a hornet's nest that will have long after consequences of harming people like me, like una, like so many who come here openly and vulnerably.

              it will make others hesitant to expose that vulnerablility at the lowest points in life.  it (this demand for "screening") will become a political tool to strike out at people that aren't "liked" - it will be abused.

              i don't doubt that you mean well - but already, this discussion is causing real damage - i know for me, it has.

              i now have my heart in my throat again - i am physically sick while typing this because i am reminded that i have no where to turn to solve this problem that started two weeks ago.

              remembrance put up the diary with "notice" and the amount wasn't met because i have been unable to get the next batch of stuff on line.

              now i'll be out going from door to door trying to sell it for what ever i can get to meet the deadline.

              and, i'll be forced to sell the rv for a fraction of what it's worth.  

              instead of $3850 - way below it's value, i will take what i can get to dig out of this hole.  i don't care.  i just don't want to come here any more to ask for help.

              this is the collateral damage.  and it hurts more than i can express.

              EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

              by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 06:03:50 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  boiseblue - i know your intentions are noble... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    but i cannot stay in your diary.

    EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

    by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 05:49:46 PM PDT

  •  Tipped for discussion and effort. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    grover, BoiseBlue

    The answer to most dissent here is the blog equivalent of "so change the channel!" But as with restrictions on TV programming, we have exceptions -- the 9/11 truthers don't get to say "If you don't like diaries about how Bush blew up the WTC, don't read them" and anti-vaxxers don't get to say "just don't click on my arguments that vaccines cause autism and children shouldn't get them." Or "Don't like the Green party? Read another diary."

    The question is, on which side of the line should unverifiable and completely unregulated appeals for money (not other kinds of help) fall? And, if on the "don't do it" side, what kinds of verification and regulation should put it on the "OK" side?

    The vocal proponents of the status quo see the absence of standards, verification, and followup as a feature, not a bug. You feel in the minority, but it may be just asymmetrical intensity. Those who see drawbacks to these diaries would have to care a lot, and have a lot of time, to wade into the torrent of defensive and offensive comments of those who have an emo-financial interest in keeping them unfettered. As you've experienced, even mild probing into apparent scams engenders unrelenting hostility and mischaracterization. (Sometimes it's like a BASF commercial -- "We're not scammers. We're the ones who make scamming easier.")

    For the proponents of unrestricted solicitation, the advantages are clear. For the opponents, the analysis is less clear. Different people have different concerns. Scamming is one, but there are others, such as those alluded to by a gilas girl in this thread and by others elsewhere. We have members with real and pressing needs, and I don't blame them for exploring every legal avenue to get dollars directed to themselves rather than to others who may have equal or greater needs. But the "sing for your supper" and "deserving poor" elements inherent in the current system put me off the whole enterprise. It is hard to read the rage and humiliation coming out of edrie and UnaSpenser and think, "hey, this has been a great deal for them!" So, it's complicated.

    As long as kos maintains a laissez faire attitude on the issue, the proponents will likely prevail. If he thinks there are any downsides to a completely unregulated process, perhaps he should lay out some principles. Otherwise, I assume he supports the status quo.

    I applaud your attempt to come up with a humane approach. On specifics, if you get that far, I said in an earlier diary:

    Nonprofits soliciting charitable donations often profess a donor's bill of rights and I think it is fair for donors here to expect some of them to apply. Notably: "To be assured their gifts will be used for the purposes for which they were given" and "To feel free to ask questions when making a donation and to receive prompt, truthful and forthright answers."
    At the very least, someone soliciting unrestricted funds should make it clear that the solicitation is for general income producing purposes, and there will be no accounting, so people can decide accordingly.

    Others, including grover and llbear, have articulated potential guidelines. I would add a lifetime solicitation ban for anyone deleting a fundraising diary after obtaining money here, at least unless a followup summary diary posting the particulars and totals is published. But until there's a clear decision that guidelines are appropriate at all, I think I won't spend more than the way too much time I've devoted to this comment. Thanks for trying.

    •  you say (0+ / 0-)
      It is hard to read the rage and humiliation coming out of edrie and UnaSpenser and think, "hey, this has been a great deal for them!" So, it's complicated.
      no. it's not.

      i've given away MUCH more than i've ever gotten in donations - and, if you note, i ask that people purchase goods that are greater value than the price i ask.

      a "great deal" for us?  honey, i'd gladly swap my circumstances with yours in a heartbeat.  you can HAVE my sister - heck, i'll pay ya to TAKE her!

      you think that una and i got a great "deal"?  would you take on our circumstances in exchange for the money we have earned or received?  would you work round the clock for multiple days to make the jewelry i sell - spend hours driving into the supplier to hand pick each and every stone/pearl/finding?

      would you then spend the time listening to people tell you how you got a "great deal" by going through stress that is enough to kill the average person? (and sometimes does?)

      no, this isn't complicated at all.  

      i would gladly give away for free every thing i make to be rid of these circumstances, to have a sister who lovingly honored our parents and family - who didn't steal the ink off the paper to benefit herself only.

      i would GLADLY go back to being the one giving freely and with gladness at helping someone who needs.

      i've taken in stray dogs, cats, squirrels, racoons, children, elderly, lost waifs - paid for ALL the care out of my own pocket willingly because it was the right thing to do and i could DO it.

      now, when money is so tight, when i see someone down on their luck - if i've just picked up that crapola dollar chicken sandwich from mcdonalds (because it is stomach glue), instead of staving off my own emptiness, i fill that space by giving it to someone who needs it more than me.

      and i do it because i WANT to do it.

      until someone tells you that you HAVE to contribute to someone who needs on this site in order to participate here, frankly, you don't get to set the rules.  you don't get to tell ME who i can and can't give to when i have the funds.

      and, yes, even as recently as a few months back, someone was in trouble and i gave - i was in less trouble than they were.

      in return for this, when i've needed, there have been friends who have been there to take up the slack - both in real life and heree.  when i then recover from the situation, i then repay those people by paying it forward.

      perhaps you've never heard of that concept?  pay it forward?

      it is when people do you a kindness, they say - instead of trying to  repay THEM, pay it forward to the next person in need.

      that is what so many of us do in life that you will never understand, if i read your words correctly.

      if holding on to what you've got is so critical to your well-being, then do so - no one is telling you otherwise.

      but, PLEASE! don't ask me to live by your screed.  it doesn't fit and never will.

      EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

      by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:42:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I've had comments mischaracterized here (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        before, but none so thoroughly, dramatically, and self righteously as that.

        I'm going to chalk it up to your exhaustion from nearly 24 hours of lobbying against a proposal that virtually no one has made and that no one in Admin has suggested is under consideration. If I'd wanted to discuss this topic with you, edrie, I would have joined your diary. We've been around this before, here and here. My views haven't changed, and neither have yours. Your diary is filled with the same patronizing, passive aggressive insults as the last time we discussed this.

        As I've said, I have every reason to believe your position will prevail. At some point, you should just declare victory and get out of the battle that you started yourself.

        And trust me on this, edrie: You don't know a damned thing about my life, because I don't let it all hang out here for the purpose of obtaining economic and noneconomic goodies from strangers. You've just underscored one of my main problems with the system here.

        Keep typing away if you like, but I will not engage you further.

        •  how rude your are. and your assumptions (0+ / 0-)

          epitomize why we shouldn't ban these types of diaries.

          you make wild accusations and offensive allegations and expect that people will trust your opinion over the majority on this site?

          i truly feel sorry for you, villanova rhodes - i do.

          that you read my words in a manner that they were NOT written is a pity.  that you choose to psychologically second guess me is another.

          if you think that i wrote that today to

          let it all hang out here for the purpose of obtaining economic and noneconomic goodies from strangers.
          , then i pity you.  i really do.

          and it is odd that you linked to the ugly diary attacking jarhead.  i was thinking of how horribly he was treated when he asked for help.  fyi, i did some research and found him very quickly online - he was exactly what he said he was before a few very ugly attacks appeared and those diarists were taken to the woodshed by quite a few community members over it. that you would choose my disagreement with you in that diary says more about you, sir, than it does about me.

          at least, we both are consistent.  i am glad, however, that i am on THIS side of the argument.

          good day, sir.  or, good night.

          EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

          by edrie on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 12:16:46 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  i apologize for misreading your comment - i went (0+ / 0-)

          back and read it three times before i saw that you were not saying that una and i were deliberately getting a "good deal"

          however, there is nothing "self-righteous" about my post.  i was and am pointing out that fortunes change unexpectedly and with really bad consequences beyond our controls.

          and, yes, i AM exhausted.  i didn't right this to "let it all hang out" - i am usually a very private person - you know VERY little of what matters in my life or what has gone on before.

          i wrote what i wrote in an attempt to illustrate that people have things happen that are beyond their control.

          if you read the comments in the other diary, you will find taht quite a few people spoke up to share similar painful stories about the same situation.

          that is called "sharing" and hopefully, our sharing what we've gone through will help ease the pain for others who experience similar situations.

          that said, after re-reading your original comment that i DID mischaracterize (out of the exhaustion as you aptly pointed out), i would have been a little cooler under the collar in my subsequent post.  the message would have been the same, but i would have chosen my words a bit more politely.

          good night.

          EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

          by edrie on Tue Aug 20, 2013 at 12:24:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  i am back and less upset than earlier today. (0+ / 0-)

    you bring up several points which i'd like to answer.

    when talking about short term and long term issues, you mentioned that it is east to see where "someone when wrong".  

    that is easy to see from the outside looking in on surface facts.  often there are many MANY more layers to conditions that place people in jeopardy.

    for example, my own situation - let's look at that.

    the what:

    finding my unemployment ran out and my income dropped by almost 200%.

    it is easy to say that i should have been seeking employment to cover the drop in income.  it is easy to think that this solution is a feasible one to offer UNTIL you examine several factors:  my age - 66 at the time unemployment ran out - past the age of finding any job but mcdonalds or burger king or jack in the box.

    and, yes, i DID apply for a manger's position at jacks a number of years ago only to have the district manager ask what my long term goals were.  i stupidly said i'd like to advance in the managerial structure - she deep sixed my application the minute i walked out the door as she saw me as a threat to HER job! (i had friends who worked there so i know what happened, especially when i called corporate to follow up and they'd never seen my application). and how about slinging burgers?  

    well, with severe back issues when i stand for any length of time on cement or hard floors, that isn't an option.

    (continued in next post)

    EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

    by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:14:09 PM PDT

    •  continued... (0+ / 0-)

      i was a success selling cars - until the recession and people stopped buying them.  even as one of the highest grossing per car, i was laid off because i was "last in".

      by the time i was laid off, my knee was in a perpetual brace and swollen twice it's size.  hard floors again.

      so - public assistance?  with my social security - i make $18 too much to qualify - and just barely made it under the wire for food stamps and medical.  

      now, food stamps are $200/month and medical covers my $30 copay - i am at the doc for physical therapy for my hand twice a week - that's $240 a month i'd have to pay or lose the use of my hand permanently.

      so, i have to earn after taxes a minimum of $240/week and still my social security isn't enough to pay rent and gas and utilities anywhere in this area.  and, why not move?  it takes money to move - i don't have that and furthermore, i'd be too far away from my suppliers to purchase material to work at home.

      EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

      by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:15:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  continued (0+ / 0-)

        now.  we're looking at all the suggestions that outsiders would make to "help" - all of which have been excrutiatingly examined and discarded due to lack of feasibility for long term survival.

        i'm lucky - i will have money when the estate settles - not enough to last me the rest of my life, that is where plan b kicks in.

        prior to mom's death, i had the money finally to take the professional screenwriters class in l.a. - $4500.  and i had enough to commute to l.a. twice a week - covered expenses.

        why there?  well, i've been told by multiple producers over many years that my treatments WILL sell - they are highly marketable - but to do that, i need to finish them - and i need some of the technical wrinkles worked out as i am theatre not film.  

        i've talked multiple times to one of the directors of the program and when i've got the financial set, i'm down there.

        that changed when mom died and my sister bled every last penny i had with the promise that she would settle the estate quickly.  it was supposed to be quick enough to take that course two years ago - but you know the rest of what happened so i won't repeat it again.

        i've 7 scripts and one stage play - waiting to be polished.  instead, i keep having to chase my own tail round in circles because of having to move, tee dying, sani getting sick, having surgery that failed due to incompetence on the part of the first physical therapist AND the estate being pillaged.

        EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

        by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:16:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  continued (0+ / 0-)

          could i have changed anything?  not as i see it.  i had no way of knowing my sister is a thief.  i had no way of knowing that sani would develop laminitis. i had no way of knowing that the funds for the course would evaporate.  i had NO way of knowing that the threapist after my surgery would royally screw up MY hand, taking months and months and potentially a second or third surgery to correct the damage (emmasnacker - i am praying your solution works!)

          so, how frustrating is it to have someone step into a situation that they only see the surface and then try to tell me how to manage it?


          my friends look at me and say "i don't know how you DO it!" frankly, i don't either.

          i joke that my hobby is juggling firebrands - but somehow, for the majority of the time, i don't drop them.

          occasionally one falls and then i need to put out the forest fire that errupts when i do.

          the biggest impedament in my financial circumstande has been my hand.  when i had the surgery, i did so because it was supposed to make me be able to work longer since the painful arthritic fingers were shutting down.

          instead of a six week recovery, i ended up with 7 1/2 months of a useless claw and only in the last month have i begun to regain use of my hand.  i can FINALLY open a doorknob.

          do you have any idea what it is like not to be able to open a door?  i can't lift pots or pans yet.  i can't hold a knife or utensil yet.  i can make do with the jewelry tools by repositioning and bracing them with that hand and having my right do the bulk o the work.

          and, my right hand, which, btw, was my worst, now hurts constantly - the middle finger joint is three times its normal size and alternates between screaming and yelling when i use it.

          i use it.

          i don't have a choice.

          EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

          by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:18:16 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  continued (0+ / 0-)

            so, for people who don't know me in the flesh to come in and say that they are going to tell me how to live long term - i just shake my head.  i'd gladly hand them my shoes and say "try it for a while before you say anything."

            i'm not complaining about things - it doesn't change them for the most part - but i DO complain vociferously about what i CAN change - which is why i now have a competent physical therapist who is gaining movement in my fingers again.

            some christmas present, huh?  this was my gift to me last year.

            bah, humbug!

            now, i haven't sat back and moped - nope.  as soon as i could drive after surgery, i was right back at the barn raking sani' stall with one arm because it had to be done if he were going to survive.  every day - i am out there packing his hay, raking his paddock to even out the mini shavings and cleaning the stall - every day i am there to give him his meds except for the rare occasion a friend is there and calls to see if they can do it for me.  

            rarely do i say yes because i NEED him to get me through this.  he is my "carrot" and life is my "stick".

            EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

            by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:20:35 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  math sucks. (0+ / 0-)

        i'll do actual numbers tomorrow.

        EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

        by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:51:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  these posts address just one of boiseblue's (0+ / 0-)

    points - i know they are lengthy but the purpose is to show tha all is never as it first appears.

    people who are desperate are buried beneath layers and layers of things that cannot be quickly or easily solved (or, for the most part, they would have already been solved and the problem wouldn't exist)

    tomorrow, i would like to bring more insight to another of her points.

    i think i can bring some knowledge to these problems people face that haven't been considered before.

    tonite, i am exhausted.  sani is bedded down, a storm front is moving through and the lightning and thunder are roiling - which calls me to bed.  i love storms - they are soothing - and this one, especially so.

    nite, all

    EdriesShop Is it kind? is it true? is it necessary?

    by edrie on Mon Aug 19, 2013 at 10:25:50 PM PDT

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