College App Survival Guide: INTRODUCTION

Hello everyone! I assume you clicked on this because you are 1) anxious about the college process given the uncertainty due to COVID or 2) just anxious about the college process. I created this mini guide about the college process, primarily built around my own experiences so it will relate to some more than others. For the most part, however, there should be some information that could pertain to you. If you didn't read the WHO AM I? tab somewhere in my blog than I will briefly introduce myself:

Hi! My name is Santos (Sahn-tos not Sahn-toes) and I am a recently-graduated Senior from the Central Valley here in California. I graduate top of my class and with two different associate degrees from my local college:
A.A. General Studies, with an emphasis in Language and Rationality, with Honors
A.A. General Studies, with an emphasis in Natural Sciences, with Honors
For a total of nearly 100 units. 
I am now attending my top-choice school, UC Berkeley as a Regents and Chancellors Scholar, which, for students who demonstrate need-based financial aid get all costs covered, all scholars get guaranteed housing for all four years and priority registration. I am currently studying PHILOSOPHY, LATIN, and BIOLOGY I was also accepted to all the other colleges I applied to: UCLA, UC San Diego, and UC Davis.
Now, I will go over my other "stats" in other posts such as, but not limited to, extracurriculars, SAT's, grades, etc. If this mini-series is able to help even one person that would mean the most to me. (Take everything here with a grain of salt).

Summer 2020: UC Berkeley

Hello everyone!!
Long time no hear. Ok, so I recently started my journey at UC Berkeley (!) this summer and I wanted to quickly discuss the courses I was taking this summer. First, I am taking Physics 8A: Introduction to Physics. 
Before signing up for this class I had never taken a physics class, so you can imagine how I felt when I found out that I am not so good at physics. At any rate, I am studying nearly everyday when I am not in lecture or discussion and doing everything possible to succeed. 
For those of you interested, we covered position, velocity, acceleration, and the likes the first week. Then, the second week we covered various topics in friction forces. And this week we covered work, and the likes. 
    As for my second class, I am taking Philosophy 25B: Modern Philosophy. This class only started this week (July 7th) so we haven't covered much. But thus far, the class is intriguing. We are currently discussing Descartes and his propositions of being. Which is actually what this blog was founded on! Descarte's proposition of "I think, therefore I am." I'll probably upload another post about what I think about this proposition and how Descarte's thinks this is the most valid argument/realization, what have you, in the world. At any rate, this class has been interesting thus far and my professor and GSI are very knowledgable woman — that's an understatement. 
I'm adamant to learn more! That's all, and I'll be posting soon about what classes I hope to be taking this Fall, and whether or not I get into them. Stay safe and wear a mask!


So..., the SAT's... The SAT's are the epitome of the product of a capitalistic society. If I could have applied to colleges without having to take the SAT, sign me up! Fortunately, for the class of 2021 you don't need to take the SAT's for some (perhaps a majority) of colleges this application season. Here is a link that lays out all of the colleges that are resorting to a test-optional or no-test option this application cycle.
Briefly, why do I say that "the SAT's are the epitome of the product of a capitalistic society?" Well, the SAT favors students who are fortunate enough to have a quality and consecutive education that adequately delivers the material seen on the SAT. While, it inadvertently works against students who come from low-income families that need to work twice as hard, say, they don't have access to all the AP classes another school may offer. Some schools don't even offer AP, and AP is largely aligned with the SAT curriculum, so if you are taking AP classes good for you, but more on the subject later. Don't let this discourage you, however, if you're not performing well enough, whether you're from a slightly-competitive public high school or substandard charter school, like I. 
At any rate, the SAT's. I took the SAT three times! The first time I got a 1100, yes really. You can imagine that when I saw this I was majorly disappointed — to say the least. Before taking the SAT's I was thinking about "top-tier" schools like Emory, UC Berkeley, UCLA, even Brown, for example. But after receiving my scores I felt subpar and discouraged from even applying to state school. If you're reading this and have a score you are not happy with, you are making the right decision by researching all the possibilities and experiences. However, don't spend eight hours a day like I did. 

After receiving this score, I watched countless YouTube videos of "HOW I GOT INTO HARVARD WITH A 1100" or something along those lines. But the unfortunate truth, for the optimum chances of even being considered by these colleges you need a decent score. And by a decent score I mean anywhere from a 1050-1400. But don't think a 1050 will suffice, unfortunately, in only some instances this will do if you are EXTRAORDINARY, I mean, you're all extraordinary but you know what I mean, like the cured-cancer-and-world-hunger-type.
Aim for the highest score possible!!! If you are ambitious enough you can do it!
I will only go over this briefly, KHAN ACADEMY KHAN ACADEMY KHAN ACADEMY. I purchased way too many supplemental study guides that I never opened. Trust me, you do NOT need to buy that $20 grammar workbook. Consistent studying from Khan Academy will go a LONG way.
Do not obsess over your score like I did. I took it a last time and got a 1300 super-score. I thought I had missed all my chances of ever getting into a school like UC Berkeley, but it just goes to show that scores are not everything. And I am sure, if you write better than average essays they will look your way!


This does’t always happen, but when it does, here are a few words.
When colleges have a hard time deciding whether or not they want to admit you, they will send you a follow-up of sorts. Some colleges want an extra LOR or essay, to decide whether or not they want to admit you.
For example, UCLA sent me an email saying they wanted more information about me. More specifically, they wanted to know more about my extracurriculars. ALWAYS SUBMIT WHAT THEY REQUEST. In the email they say its “optional,” but by not submitting it, it’s easier to decide between someone who submitted a response and someone who did not. It shows you care! 
You might be thinking “Duh, if they ask me I’ll submit an essay.” Keep in mind, they’re almost going to ask for these extra whatever-it-may-be AFTER you’ve submitted all your apps and riding on the Senioritis train 😎. No, seriously, even I thought about not submitting an essay because at the time it felt like so much do, especially after an exhausting application season. 
Best of luck.


This one is very closely aligned with CLASSES, so it's important to read that one as well.
I would say that Grades are the most important quantitative aspect of your application. They show that you have a genuine interest in certain subjects and it shows that you can succeed (unless of course you have all A+ but a 800 SAT Score, it shows more about your school than you (capitalism sucks!)). Essentially, it's not impossible to have all A's. In fact, in an ideal society everyone could have all A's if our education system was smarter and actually entertained student's interests. At any rate, it is possible to get all A's if you apply yourself. In fact, if you have summer readings, stop reading this and complete that. It's a sign! Stop wasting time! But if you're not and you're quarantining like the rest of us..., where was I? 
Any who, grades say a lot about the student and although I said they are "the most important quantitative aspect of your application," it is NOT THE END OF THE WORLD GETTING A B.
If you have a B or 2, or 5! Ok 10 is pushing it, but don't let t
There's a Spongebob picture for everything lol
his deter you from applying to your dream college. When I got my first B, I started crying because I thought my world was over and Harvard would never accept me. But I accepted it and moved on, BUT with the wrong mentality. I said I was never going to get a B ever agin! But when I almost got a C in Intro to Calculus at my local college, I started crying again. Yes, I cry. But then, I had another epiphany, this time it was better than the toxic mindset from before. I told myself that it is OK to have not perfect grades, especially if you are thriving in your other classes AND working at 4 AM. Again, you don't have to be working at 4 AM for colleges to dismiss your grades, but have SOLID EC's.
Aim for A's! Don't cry over a B like I did, but don't settle for B's either. Keep yourself accountable and know that you are the only one in charge of your success (unless you are my Intro to Calc Prof. that gave everyone a <B).
For those of you interested, my final GPA W: 4.4 UW: 3.9. Again, though grades don't define you and I had around 6 B's when I applied to colleges.


Let's keep this baby brief. In short, you want to choose someone you have known for the longest. When I was choosing someone and looking up YouTube videos, everyone said "Choose a teacher you've known your whole life!" Not really, but in some cases you have a different teacher for different subjects, so you almost never have a teacher for more than 2 years. If you are one of the lucky ones that has had a teacher throughout high school that has encouraged you and sees you for the awesome and qualified person you are, then your choice should be clear. But if this isn't you then keep reading.
Ok. So, UC's do NOT recommend LOR. So, if you're like me and only applying to UC's you can read another mini-guide. You're probably wondering how I know so much about LOR, well, not only do I have a rich bank of probably days worth of YouTube videos about students and their own experience, but I also asked for some! Yep! I had to muster the courage only to never send them :). But a majority of other schools do require them. 
Choosing a teacher should follow the basic guidelines of who you've known the longest and the one's that know YOU best. I chose my science teacher who wrote an amazing essay for me (Since I technically never submitted my LOR to these schools, she did show me before submitting them) even though I didn't talk to her much because I followed this rule from Youtube (watch the whole video) called the Halo Effect, works all the time.
Then, since I had literally no other teacher, I had to ask my principal who taught me Honors English 11 and 12 and she loved me to. In conclusion, YOU know best who is optimal to write your LOR. Now, if you have a plethora of options there are some general rules you should follow.
In short, if you are entering STEM.
Let's say the school requires 3 LOR. You want 2 from STEM, and if you're like me and took principally DE you have to suck it up and ask a professor. Try your absolute hardest to get classes with the same professor if you get along with them and they seem to like you (you know what I mean). Then, typically you would want a third from a humanities teacher because it shows colleges you know your stuff. No seriously, by adding a humanities teacher you are able to show, not that you are well rounded, but that you are well-equipped to succeed in all classes that you are required to take at the college (because you will be taking history, art, philosophy, etc. in college, again.)
Entering Humanities
Here I wouldn't recommend getting one from a STEM teacher only because humanities majors generally don't need to express adequacy in STEM classes. So "YOU know best who is optimal to write your LOR" applies here.


If you have already begun the college process, you probably know how much of a pain in the rear counselors can be. If not, you are lucky, and if I am the only one, you are all wrong. Any who, my experience with my counselor is, to say the least, special. 
(I don't really have advice for EA or ED since I failed miserably, but there are plenty of Youtube videos that I am sure you have already watched, good luck my friend.)
Ok, so I had the same counselor from my Freshman year to my Junior year. That's all fine, right? Wrong. The beginning of my Senior year we get a new counselor. I didn't think anything of it, but as college season came around, I realized she knew absolute nothing about me! Literally zero, I hadn't even gone in to talk with her because I was never on campus (I was almost always at my local college studying). Don't get me wrong I have nothing against her (I really hope she doesn't read this) because it's not entirely her fault I wasn't able to apply to any other school other than UC's, but...
FUN STORY (skip to USEFUL INFO if you don't want to read my horror story with my counselor)
Briefly, because I can write about this forever. Series of events:
1) I wanted to apply out-of-state to a 4 year (Carleton College, YIKES, see MY 2 CENTS)
2) I had never seen my counselor, so when I went in to have her submit transcripts the day they were due, she wasn't there, bigger yikes.
3) Luckily, the registrar, my BEST FACULTY FRIEND, could upload them for me.
4) UH OH, she had to submit a personal statement as the counselor, which she said she would do but never did, I do not blamer her.
5) She never submitted it so my application was never "received" (thank god).
6) As application season came around I needed the counselor to do many things, submit transcripts, the likes.
7) However, the registrar was still "the counselor" according to CommonApp, and all they had to do was talk to one another and designate themselves the proper roles after I CALLED the common app.
Yes, my Counselor was Meryl Streep.
8) Long story short, they never took a minute out of their day to do so, and all of my applications to 10+ schools were never "received."
So, I had originally planned to apply to many T20 schools and others but could not because of this issue, luckily the UC apps require ZILCH from my counselor and I those were the only apps accepted.
After writing this, I feel like I was in the wrong ~.~, what do you think?
Ok, regardless if you are a rising senior or even a rising freshman (I once saw a 7th grader ask about something in A2C, I hope you're doing well), you ARE NOT BEHIND. Some people recommend talking to them like 2 years in advance about colleges (???) no. At the beginning of the year, the first thing you want to do is talk to your counselor. Do not make the same mistake I made by not talking to them. Even if your besties, lay out your plan and what you should expect from them:
"Hi, I just wanted to talk about [COLLEGES] and if I can have you submit [letters of rec, sometimes, transcripts] anywhere before [WEEK BEFORE APPS DUE]" Short and cute.
Do NOT listen to any of the bull they say if they say something along the lines, "Maybe you should look at this [NOT THE COLLEGE YOU ARE APPLYING TO]," unless its a state school and you want an Out-of-state school then see MY 2 CENTS.
Now, bother them.
Email them MONTHLY, harass them (not really, but really, you feel?). It might seem like you don't want to bother them, but once you're done with HS you are DONE and you will never see them ever again, unless you're related, then... idk. By doing so, you are securing you will have said documents ON TIME. Best of luck!


If this isn't you, you're doing it wrong
we move on, a few rules. Yes, you are protected by the anonymity of the internet, but I am not, so I have feelings too. Comparing yourself to my writing is 100% fine with me, I do it too. But trashing and stomping on my essays is infantile and I don't want that negative energy, even from around the world. I don't mind, however, comparing your own writing and saying how much more better it is, because it probably is. But let's get something out of the way, I wrote these the NIGHT THEY WERE DUE.
(You'll see I only applied to UC schools, and you're probably wondering: "Santos how can you, with your unbounded wisdom and knowledge (sarcasm, of course), not have applied to every Ivy League even though you had fee waivers, well, there's a entire story about that under COUNSELORS)
I knew I had literal MONTHS to work on these, but I never got to it. Do not make the same mistake I made by waiting. The only reason I was able to do so was because for the past 2 years or so I had compiled many notes on my phone about different topics and drafts about my extracurriculars. It still took me from when I started to 11:50 P.M., I DO NOT RECOMMEND WAITING TO THE END. It is a dangerous game, but without further ado, the product of an entire afternoons worth.
THE ESSAYS (cue the dun-dun-dun tune from the movies)
(I attached a pdf because I am committed to the cause 😎!)


Industry Secret: This portion is HANDS DOWN the largest part of your college application (Extracurriculars are 50% and Essays are 49%). Throw everything your mom, priest, dog, sister, brother, and so forth, has ever told you about the college process, If they did not prioritize extracurriculars, they are wrong. And not just ANY extracurricular, like a lab assistant with this prominent scientist for a month (which works too) but a juicy one! Yes, Juicy.
The reason your extracurriculars are even more important than your essays are that you're essays, at the very least one, should be about your extracurriculars. This is what divides you from the rest of the group.
I would recommend showing one BIG extracurricular to have when applying, one that you can talk about forever.
This one is word heavy so read the headlines before proceeding, and I could continue to write forever but I am writing this at 4 in the morning and am missing some components so DM with questions.
RISING SENIORS (applies to rising Juniors)
If you are a rising senior and you don't have a conspicuous choice for your extracurricular, it's going to be more difficult. If this is you, you have to lift your bootstraps and recall all of the times you spent 2+ apart of a club or project. Whether it was a minor club or a church thing, you better extrapolate some heart-wrenching stories from these EC's if you want to stand a chance. The biggest recommendation I have is: GET A JOB. No seriously, if you have lower-than average grades showing that you have a job that you have held for more than 6 months shows commitment and it also shows that you have responsibilities outside of school and EC's. 
I worked at a pizza place after my sophomore year to help my family by having them not have to worry about me. But, I was getting too few hours, so I got a job working at 3 AM!! I'm not saying you need to work at 4 AM, because it was technically illegal since I was underage but doing something so ambitious shows dedication. But just having a job will suffice. Whether you are upper-middle class or lower-middle class it shows that you are committed to an education regardless (capitalism sucks!)
If you didn't read the paragraph before because you are a stickler for time and don't have seconds to waste, what you should take from it is: GET A JOB. A simple job goes a very long way during the college application process. You should also join one or two clubs if you have not already. And if you have absolutely NOTHING under your belt, I would recommend starting a club. If you are in the humanities, start a Philosophy club, and have meetings where you talk about whether water is wet (ITS NOT) or the semantics of a chair. If in STEM, JOIN ROBOTICS its not too late to make it to state or national competitions by joining a competitive school team or local organization near you. But even STEM students can create a club, and write about how it changed the way you view the world.
Join something you are passionate about. As a rising Freshman it can be difficult to find your bearings so join a little of everything, and then drop what you don't like. I would HIGHLY recommend joining your schools IT competition. I know at some schools its like speech and debate and their school has won nationals three consecutive years, or the likes. But at my high school, for example, we had a robotics team and I was able to go to WORLDS my freshman year because a team member got sick shortly before the trip (Sorry Devin). Joining a competitive team shows leadership and dedication, especially because it shows that you spend extra time on something you care about. Commit to something early and stick with it to show dedication to colleges.
EXTRAPOLATE EVERY EC YOU HAVE. Don't lie but write about your ECs so that it reflects upon you as a better person. For example, I didn't say I made it to WORLDS my freshman year by default, but that I made it to WORLDS my freshman year, you see? Just get everything from your EC's because this shows and reflects a lot about who you are as a person.


HONORS CLASSES! There is no linear path to the classes you should take that will optimize your success in the college application process. You should, however, take the most challenging course load. Notice how I didn't say, the MOST CLASSES. This does no reflect well. By taking an exuberant amount of classes you are showing colleges you don't have a genuine interest. Sure, I took 100 units at my local community college, but more than half of those classes were in the sciences and philosophy, to show that I had an affinity for these subjects.
This is the second biggest industry secret. It's been my goal for a long time to destigmatize community colleges because they are commonly seen as a resort when you fail out of high school. That is not the case! Trust me, when you go directly to a four-year university whether in-state or out-of-state with or without scholarships you are going to regret it when you see negative tens of thousands of dollars in student debt. Community colleges can change that! Not only can you get the EXACT same education, because you are taking principally breadth classes your first 2 years at a four year anyway. Not only that, but you are not competing with hundreds of equally ambitious students at a CC. If you put the effort in, you can flourish at a CC and work along a lot of retired or near-retirement renowned professors with a life of knowledge in a small classroom. Sure, liberal arts colleges offer the same thing, but at CC its for a FRACTION of the price. By applying the same amount of work you would at a 4 year that you don't think you would be great at because you're #1 rejected you, you can succeed at a CC and have glowing LOR from respected professors and transfer, with potential scholarship opportunities!
I am lucky enough to have a school so close to a community college that all I had to do was walk 1 minute from my HS to my college. But, explain to your parents, especially if your middle class because you are in the toughest position, the importance of CC and how you can still be a doctor, without so much debt.
If you are not so lucky that you don't have a CC, but you do have honors and/or AP courses, take the most challenging workload!
I am not as familiar with these courses, so take everything I say with an extra grain of salt, but I know that AP courses are similar to college courses. Again do not aim to take the most classes because then your grades could suffer, and it reflects a lot about you to colleges when you take SO many classes and show standard effort in each.
Instead, take the most interesting ones that align with your EC's and Essays as to reflect the kind of person you are!

CASG: My thought

So...You've reached the end. Congratulations, and again, I want to reiterate, to take everything I state here with a grain of salt. Don't take everything I said as the slogan of your life, but if you do let me know. Also, I did write the entirety of this mini-guide series at 4 A.M. More importantly, whether you only read one mini-guide or just came to laugh at me 😆, I hope you learned something. And if you didn't tell me to my face @ssaintos and follow me. No, seriously, if you have any questions feel free to DM and I will try my hardest to answer it for you, especially with coronavirus still going on, I have bundles of free time. 

(If you competed in any Central Valley VEX Robotics Competitions and you recognize me, yes I did set up and host those, I'm sorry if I yelled at you)

Any who, if you're this far, thank you for taking a second out of time to waste it on me, MUA HA HA. Anyways, here's my 2 cents about college.
The society we live in is certainly a weird one. We work our entirely lives to eventually work for another person just to fund our retirement, and we have to convince ourselves that we like it. 
Besides the point, applying to college is a step in the right direction, but don't do it for the wrong reasons. Far too many students fall susceptible to the peer pressure that they have to attend a 4-year university just because their friend are, only to find that those friends are doing it just because their friends are. Join college because you have an affinity for a certain subject and you genuinely want to learn more. Don't spend tens of thousands of dollars on a college solely based off the fact that you want to "see what you're interested in." Again, a CC can give you the same experience at a fraction of the cost for the same conclusion. At any rate, if you're reading over this quickly because you don't care, I wish you the best of luck this upcoming application season, and all the other application seasons, but to this one in particular because of the uncertainty due to COVID. If I could come out of the college process unscathed (kind of) you will survive. And your #1 school does not define who you are because you will do just as well if you go to your state school or your #2. 
Thank you again for taking time out of your day to read this and if you appreciated even a a single word from these mini-guides (even if it was for your amusement) FOLLOW ME ON THE GRAM @ssaintos. Thanks and you should check out my other stuff too. 👍🏽

cupcakKe - Discounts: Unapologetically Brutal

For a long time, cupcakKe has not been viewed as a viable rapper. This popular opinion branched from her raunchy and very much tongue-in-cheek music: "Juicy Coochie," among many other explicit titles and LP's. For these reasons, she has accumulated accolades from various social media presences as a comical and tongue-in-cheek rapper. 
Most recently, however, she caught the attention of those who considered her a one-dimensional rapper — including me. As with countless others, after listening to cupcakKe's debut songs, I instantaneously placed her in a droll category of mediocrity and thought nothing more of her as a musician.
With the release of her new song, Discounts, as aforementioned, she has captured the attention of all her doubters —haters, rather. Discounts, from my observations of her earlier music, is a paradigm shift from one-dimensional, raunchy music to a beat-heavy, well-versed song — to say the least. Discount's beat, at first, seems to come off as an overwhelmingly overused beat. It transcends almost instantly, however, into a much more evolved multi-layered tone. Discounts is unapologetically crude and nasty — in a good way. She bangs on the wall of sanity with lyrics such as, "[t]his b**** didn't wax my eyebrows right, went out with a bang, b****." As psychotic as it may seem, it works. The entirety of the song is laden with innuendos and witty statements that have reflected cupcakKe as an endearing, and certainly viable, mainstream female rapper. Certainly, at the very least, is deserving of the attention.
Whether or not you agree with her harsh lyricism, she is proving herself to be a quality rapper. With Discounts, cupcakKe has demonstrated herself capable of rap-songs comparable to that of the latter of mainstream female rappers: Nicki Minaj, Cardi B, Saweetie, Tierra Whack, Rico Nasty, etc. In fact, on her current track, she is creating a subcategory of the female rap game, whether you like it or not.

RATING: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Hello everyone! This was my response for a homework question for my political philosophy class. Our professor asked what Marxist argument we thought was ideal in relation to "just distributive" methods. Might include the book citation later. I might come off as repetitive, but we need to reach that word count (no shame!). Enjoy.
Of the options Marx offers, as presented by Kymlicka, introduces interesting arguments to consider. Of the options the most ideal argument seemed to be exploitation. Exploitation is perhaps the best argument; it presents significant points that challenge other distributive methods: liberal egalitarianism and libertarianism, for example. What distinguishes this “just distribution” method from the other methods is “[concentrating] on the more fundamental questions of production,” (Kymlicka 219). This is important because it aims to develop a greater understanding of “just distribution” by contributing another aspect. 
The author expands on this idea, and presents the main inconsistency with strictly redistributing income, much like the other methods of “just distribution” attempt: “If all we do is redistribute income from those who own product assets to those who do not, then we will still have classes, exploitation, and hence the kind of contradictory interests that make justice necessary in the first place,” (Kymlicka 219). This quote encapsulates the main idea of placing an emphasis on production, as well, and its benefits.
What other methods fail to consider is that in a scheme of redistributive taxation, where it may leave a capitalist and worker with an equal income, the capitalist is still left with the overwhelming power to control the worker’s time. This presents an inconsistency that other “just distributive” methods, as presented by Rawls and Dworkin, have. According to Marx, by focusing on redistributive income or taxation, then it fundamentally remains indifferent to classism and exploitation. Recognizing exploitation is significant because it is an aspect of concentrating on basic queries of production. What does Marx mean by forces of production, rather than distribution? He says “[concentrating] on the more fundamental questions of production,” (Kymlicka 219) to include human labour power and means of production, because as aforementioned, it alleviates possibilities of exploitation. 
I chose exploitation for the various previously mentioned advantages, but also because it fundamentally recognizes workers systematically subjugated by a capitalist society. This is done by workers having to perform tasks that they are compensated for less than the value of the commodities: “Marxists, however, operate with a more technical definition of exploitation. In this technical usage, exploitation refers to the specific phenomenon of the capitalist extracting more value from the worker’s labour (in the form of produced goods) than is paid back to the worker in return for that labour (in the form of wages)” (Kymlicka 227). This quote is important because it summarizes exploitation of workers by capitalists. This is the primary issue with exploitation and why it is important to recognize it, because the other distributive-focused methods structurally dismiss it. 
Why did I not select alienation or need from Marx’s other arguments about “just distribution?” First, from my understanding, alienation referred to the disconnection between workers and their production, in particular, in a capitalist society. For me, this was bordering the central idea of exploitation, except I felt that exploitation was more encapsulating. More inclusive in the sense that pointed out inconsistencies in other methods (i.e. not recognizing the exploitation of workers despite, theoretically, an equal income). And I did not select the needs principle because as mentioned by Kymlicka, “Unfortunately, once we adopt this expansive interpretation of the needs principle, it no longer gives us guidance on how to distribute resources,” (Kymlicka 237). Along with fundamentally ignoring delving into elaborate circumstances, the needs principle is not ideal. 
A “gap,” of many, according to Kymlicka, is that the premise for this argument is controversial. It’s “controversial” because the theory, the ‘labour theory of value’ of which it’s based is incoherent. It’s incoherent because it contradicts itself, according to Kymlicka: “[F]or the labour theory says that the value of an object is determined by the amount of labour currently required to produce it, not how much labour was actually involved in producing it,” (Kymlicka 227). Additionally, the argument becomes even more convolute with the introduction of technology. With technology, the labour value and production fluctuates and becomes more difficult to examine. The importance of exploitation, however, despite these counterarguments, is the moral approach it introduces, which I think needs to be accounted for in other redistributive methods.
After reading the arguments as presented by Marx and reflecting on the previous methods of “just distribution,” exploitation is the most ideal “just distribution” method. Rawls and Dworkin both presented strong and clear arguments about the significance of income and taxation distribution, but exploitation introduced, not just something new, but an all-together different approach. He reflected how these other methods ignored exploiting workers, to an extent, and how by focusing on production more, exploitation can be minimized. This, to me, is perhaps the most ideal case, one in which the means of production and wealth or taxation distributions are all utilized to maximize “just distribution."

UPDATE: Coronavirus

It took a world pandemic for me to continue to write on this blog. Not many people view this blog, but I after the college process I want to offer my own advice. See ya'll soon!

Why I'm Advocating for Tulsi Gabbard...Sort of

UPDATE: This was from August, I believe, and this is no longer my definitive stance. Although I think that Tulsi Gabbard is an ideal candidate to be the next President of the United States, I am also not myopic and understand that she will most likely not get the vote. Which is why I instead to upload a new article about who I plan to vote for. This is also severely under-revised and I would rather not add to it as to not change or affect the initial intention.

Why am I rooting for Representative Tulsi Gabbard?

Aside from her overwhelmingly qualified background enlisting into the U.S. Army after 9/11, served as a soldier for over sixteen years, deployed twice to the Middle East, and has served in Congress for over seven years I am voting for Gabbard because of her non-interventional ideology, which deviates from the cookie-cutter arguments the other candidates propose, aside from Yang and his national dividend. She proposes fundamental problems that I was never aware of, for example, how the government said "seek immediate shelter" during the hectic bombing alerts during January of last year in Hawaii, when "there is no shelter" [1]. This is something that has become increasingly important, considering the rising tensions that the Trump administration is provoking with nuclear-yielding countries, like North Korea.

Additionally, she announced during the second democratic debates that we are spending four billion dollars on a war every month that evidently does not deescalate tensions. As a veteran, she understands the risk we are putting American citizens in by placing them in foreign territory. Instead of putting our tax dollars into a perilous war, we need to place an emphasis on domestic issues and priorities (the list is too long).

When asked whether or not Representative Gabbard would keep the tariffs that Donald Trump has on China she says:
"I would not. Because the approach that President Trump has taken is extremely volatile and without any clear strategic plan and it has a ravaging and devastating effect on our domestic manufacturers on our farmers that are already stuggling and now failing to see the light of day because of the plan that Trump has taken" [1].
Working with my father who has a windshield business which is our household's main source of income, the ineffective tariffs are effecting the well-being of my father's business. The Trump Administration has consistently used the use of tariffs as a "scare tactic" that has been proven ineffective and unfounded, which Gabbard vehemently scrutinizes because she is aware of the consequences.

Climate change

[1]: This is a Youtube video from Tulsi Gabbard's youtube channel where she says, in her closing statement, that in a case of an International bombing on us, the U.S., there is no shelter. (8:19-8:22)

A New Semester!

It's the beginning of a new semester and I thought I would start to re-upload again. At least for now I am only going to be uploading some assignments for this semester from, particularly, my philosophy courses. I am currently taking Political Philosophy, Ethics: Theory and Applications, and Symbolic Logic. I hope my assignments will provide insight into what we are currently learning and even how I interpret the learning. So expect all of that very soon. Also, if my assignments aren't as polished as they could absolutely be, it's because I have a million and one things to do and I complete them sufficiently. More about me and my schedule for this semester later, I'm sleep deprived.

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