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Here's a good opportunity to ponder the limits of freedom of speech, brought to us by the Internatonal Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

Three media executives had their sentences reduced for inciting violence during the Rwanda Genocide.

Personally, I don't think this is an exercise of speech when you're urging people to kill others. Or providing lists of people to be killed.
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Man donates sperm for grandchild.

I imagine that this family is having some interesting conversations that most families don't have with their grandfather.
weaktwos: (Wow.)
Iran's MPs signed a statement that cites our bombing of Japan and the invasions of Iraq and Iran as "terrorist actions".

I kinda see the Iraq deal. But the bombing of Japan, as grim as it was, made sense. Vietnam. Yeah, that wasn't too nice, either.

But Iran totally missed the opportunity by citing our Revolutionary War. That was pure insurgency, baby.

Can't we all agree that everyone's a terrorist, sometimes. That doesn't mean we're committing hate...aw nevermind.

Sea Tubes

Sep. 26th, 2007 06:00 pm
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To assist in staving off Global Warming, a few scientists are proposing the installation of 10,000-100,000 tubes into the ocean.

The intent will be to foster algal growth.

Interesting.

In other news, I saw "No End in Sight" last night at the Crest. Nothing new. But I hadn't seen all the footage before. Rumsfeld is hideous.
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So, this week's Taser victim has opened up an interesting discussion.

So Andrew Meyer breaks into a Kerry Speech and grabs the microphone to blurt out his conspiracy theory.

So there is some footage of the "Taser Experience". Here's one version. Here's another version from another angle.

So, there's a lot of talk about this. Is this a freedom of speech issue? Joe Conason at Salon says it is a sign of how much we've lost in the way of personal freedom's under Bush's Regime.

While I certainly don't like Bush, and agree that his policies have adversely impacted America, I don't think it applies in this situation.

So from what I can tell based on the video and news reports, he runs past the police to get into Kerry's presentation. From the get-go, this is a security issue, and not one of free speech. And it's not even to sit down and see him speak. It's to interrupt the presentation and ask his question. His manners in asking the question were odd, too. He said that Kerry spoke for two hours, he should get to ask his question. Forget about the fact that the whole point was that Kerry was speaking. Yet another odd, somewhat hostile act on the part of this man.

So the police made a decision to escort him out. Not really a bad call, since his behavior was erratic from the beginning. On top of it, when he's being escorted out, he resists law enforcement.

Now, the issue was whether or not excessive force was used. That I cannot tell. He was resisting arrest and not being cooperative. And I don't think that was necessarily easy for the police to deal with. But of course, he managed to get past them

What happened to Civil Disobedience? If you actively resist police, I think it's a given you're going to get into arrested. And if you struggle, you're going to get subdued.

This man was disruptive and in a way that warranted a security concern from the outset. And since he was a greedy bastard, he was also disrupting the event in general by asking more that one question, which is not quite considerate for the rest of the audience. And Skull and Bones? Oh please!

In this day and age where terrorists have flourished by using unpredictable tactics, it doesn't seem unreasonable that other crazy people might use similar tactics. I think the police were correct in attempting to extricate this man from the room. I'm not sure about whether the Taser was necessary. However, I could picture a cop getting flustered, or just frustrated that this guy was being a total ass. Given that much of the audience clapped when he was being escorted out, I suspect a number of them secretly wanted to give this bro a Tase.

In the news

Sep. 7th, 2007 08:00 am
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First, from The Onion, "School Shootings Help Prepare Students for Being Shot in Real World". Heh. I'm sure it's quite true. Of course PTSD may be involved, as well.

So the Justice Department is saying that Internet Providers should be able to charge for priority web traffic. What does this mean, exactly? I'm already paying $50 or more a month for cable internet. Would I be charged more? It was mentioned this may affect educational entities more. I don't like the sound of it. Anyone have any more news on this?

Chinese woman found with 26 sewing needles embedded in her body. They think they were inserted when she was a baby by her grandparents who were upset that she wasn't a boy. Why did it take 31 years to address? Well the needles are now penetrating vital organs. Ew! And what great grandparents. I hope they are still alive so Luo Cuifen can "take care of her grandparents" in their final days. Just incredible.

In other news, I'm having Cable Card problems. The Tivo is deciding that some of my channels like Comedy Central and Sci Fi should not come through. FX, Style, Spike are a few other stations that don't "receive a signal".
weaktwos: (awkward)
Yes. Who is Dale Limberhand. Limber. Hand.

In just a few short moments, if you haven't already done so, you will ponder if that name is real or fake.

Why? Because the case of Idaho v. Limberhand established a precedent that masturbation in an enclosed bathroom stall was within one's right to privacy. There's a little more here.

Yes, Dale Limberhand was arrested for obscene conduct after an officere observed him through a four inch hole in a stall partition...well...spanking the monkey.

So this makes me wonder: How many officers gleefully volunteer for the gay toilet sex beat?(pun intended)

Or is it a short straw kind of situation?

In other news, I saw the B Street Theater's production of "The Book of Liz". It was fantasticly funny. The play was originally written by David and Amy Sedaris. I will have to make some time to read David's books.
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Just yesterday, in a city about an hour north of Sacramento, an overpass collapsed (new construction) on a Fedex truck. The driver was only minorly injured, thank goodness. A construction worker was seriously injured. As far as tragedies go, this was a very fortunate one. Because the next day, in a shining example of the "It could be worse" doctrine, a bridge in Minneapolis collapses.


I was relieved to find that my friends in Minnesota were not involved in this tragedy. I certainly hope that the death toll doesn't rise any further. It was, however, convenient that the Red Cross offices were near the bridge. Talk about response time!

Despite my horror and concern for the victims in this situation, I cannot deny that I smirked when the civil engineer interviewed on MSNBC kept talking about the erection process. I wonder if there's some competition among engineers that if they are interviewed about bridges, they must try to mention the "erection process" as often as possible.

In other news, I was watching Apollo 13, which dramatizes how the Apollo 13 crew and mission control rose to the occasion and recovered from what could have been a very disasterous flight for the crew. Power issues, crew safety, Carbon dioxide filter made on the fly, they had quite a problem on their hands and they succesfully brought the crew home. I love this movie.

I started listening to the commentary of Jim and Marilyn Lovell (Jim Lovell was the command module leader). They sound like a delightful couple. I don't know if Jim Lovell's mother actually said this, but if she did, it's a great line: "If they can make a washing machine fly, my Jimmy can land it." What a cool ol' lady.
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[written this morning, but I got so busy I forgot to post]
I am not up at work this early, but I swapped shifts with a coworker. This means I will be able to leave early. Wahoo!

I thought I would be yanked out of my slumber by my alarm. However, Sascha the cat decided to wake me up by an intense self-grooming session about 12 inches from my ear.

I recommend the sound of moist licking as an alarm sound in the morning. It's a tad disconcerting.

While listening to NPR's Morning Edition, I heard an interesting interview by a woman whose family challenged themselves to live a year without buying anything made in china. You can hear her interview here.

Here's a sad local story about a man was killed by some Russians at a picnic spot near Lake Natoma. Apparently a group of Russians did not approve of Satender Singh's group's conduct and had been harassing the party much of the day. 911 was called, but they couldn't find the picnic spot. And in the view of the caller, the Park employee that was at the gate was not responsive either. I experienced something similar. There appears to be no protocol for these people who work at the Park to address problems in the park. At least that's what it seems like, as their reaction is one of lack of interest.

Mupdate

Jul. 7th, 2007 10:24 am
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Interesting link: This will start rolling out pages sometime in 2008. The Encyclopedia of Life. An encyclopedia for every single living (known) organism on this planet. The mockups of it look really cool.

Interesting Debate: The Jesus Picture in the Courthouse. It's an interesting case, in that it really divides some folks. If the court rules in favor of the plaintiff (ACLU) The Christian folks might feel persecuted because their faith is no longer favored in the courthouse. Some would say, "Hey, it's just a picture!". Others will say, "Christianity is part of our heritage!"

That is good and well, but a courthouse is not a place to display bias on faith. There are plenty of churches and museums to cover our heritage. If it's just a picture, Why be bothered if it's taken down? Believe me, Megachurches are preserving the heritage.

We got some vile, vile life: Two teenagers gang-rape a woman, force her son to watch and participate. Okay, this is off-the-hook in terms of gruesomeness. This is wretched, and somehow I don't think it's as bad as it gets. I'm fascinated to find out about these teenagers and learn what factors inclined them to this crime. Were they always without empathy such that they wouldn't want to inflict such suffering on a anothr human being? Certainly they have an understanding of torture and suffering, they created a hellish scenario for a mother and son. What have they been exposed to that drove them to this crime? One report mentioned that they felt no remorse. Very frightening.

David Limbaugh is brandishing the tired Pro-scootie talking points.
He has merely been the scapegoat for the Bush-hating left, which has been lusting to criminalize the administration over the president's fraudulently alleged misrepresentations about Iraqi WMD.

Yeah, the Bush-hating Justice Department started this all.

And finally, goofy memage:




You're Minnesota!

You love hanging out around lakes, even if they're frozen solid. Given
your probable Scandanavian heritage, it all just demonstrates that you're pining for the
fjords. Your obsession with wrestling got a little carried away for a while there, and
this should prompt some serious reflection about the separation of mind and body. It may
be time to celebrate, even throw your hat up in the air. You're going to make it after
all.



Take the State Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.



weaktwos: (Default)
One beltway insider is quoted saying the neo-cons are "weighted down by the sheer, glaring unfairness" of Libby's sentence. And there's the rub. None seem the least weighted down by the sheer, glaring unfairness of sentencing soldiers to repeated and longer tours of duty in a war induced by deception. It was left to the hawkish academic Fouad Ajami to state it baldly, as he pleaded on the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal for Bush to pardon Libby. For believing "in the nobility of this war," wrote Ajami, Scooter Libby had himself become a "casualty" -- a fallen soldier the president dare not leave behind on the beltway battlefield. Not a word in the entire article about the real fallen soldiers. The honest-to-god dead and dying and wounded. Not a word about the chaos or the cost. All the beltway warriors can muster is a plea of mercy for one of their own who lied to cover their tracks...

...And from the former Governor of Virginia, James Gilmore, a staunch conservative, comes this verdict: "If the public believes there's one law for a certain group of people in high places and another law for regular people, then you will destroy the law and destroy the system." So it may well be, as the Hartford Courant said editorially, that Mr. Libby is "a nice guy, a loyal and devoted patriot"...but none of that excuses perjury or obstruction of justice. If it did, truth wouldn't matter much."


I would agree. There's something rotten about someone found guilty of a crime not serving his sentence with a little dignity. And our leaders should support the law. Yet Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, Wolfawitz, Delay all extolling the virtues of a man who perjured himself. And this is not a case of trying the case in the media. Scooter was tried in court, and sentenced by conservative judges. Considering the Republican party is known to get all up in a tiff over conduct, especially when it comes to receiving blow jobs, you'd think y'all would be galvanized on not endorsing any sort of lying or dishonesty, especially when it comes to exposing CIA agents.

Oh wait. He was lying to protect you guys. That's different.

While the truth may set you free, I suppose lying keeps you free. For a while.
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He always brings such fascinating issues to the television screen.

On this week's "Bill Moyers Journal", he interviewed Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori the 26th Presiding Bishop and Primate of the Episcopal Church. The first woman to be elected to such a position. That's just fantastic. And she's an inspiring, fascinating woman. Read more here. There's a link to some video there, as well.

Greed:
While Bishop Katharine's interview inspired me, the CEO salary issue pissed me off.
I think if a company is doing fantastic, then hell yes, the CEO should get a *gorgeous* bonus. But I contend that your employees must prosper with you.
Northwest's CEO Doug Steenland exited the bankruptcy with a big pay package. On top of Steenland's salary, reported at $516,384 dollars last year, he will get a total compensation package of more than $26.6 million in stock. That's $5.8 million in stock options and $20.8 million worth of restricted stocks that will vest over the next four years. Northwest workers bore the brunt of the restructuring — after a $1.4 billion a year cut in labor expenses — pilots and flight attendant wages were cut by between 20 and 40 percent.

Other members of the executive team were given bonuses in the range of 13 million.

Sure, the argument is that you need to pay vast quantities of money to keep talented executives at a company.

So this current executive team got Northwestern Airlines out of bankruptcy by cutting the salaries and benefits of their employees. 60% of the cost savings measures were related to employee benefits. Pilots work 20% more, and get paid 40% less. Sadly, it seems that as a pilot, if you leave one airline and start at another, you have to start at the lower pay scale. That also seems a bit screwed up, but I'll get to that later.

As a long range strategy, making your pilots work harder and get paid less for it means they get more tired and more stressed out. I don't see this as a good thing for people who are responsible for the lives of a hundred people in a metal flying tube. Some of these pilots are having to sell their homes, and really change their lives drastically to make ends meet. They have to pay more medical costs, one shelling out $4,000 out of pocket to pay for the medical costs of having a baby. The CEO just needs to cry in his beer over the fact that 50% of other Fortune 500 CEOs make more than he does. Waaaaaaaaaa! What a tragedy.

This guy gets paid a minimum of 500k to come up with the brilliant idea of slashing employee wages. Any retard can do that. For $500k a year and a $20 million stock package, you better come up with something better than that. Much better. I want to see brilliant investment choices and innovated solutions to make sure your employees are happy and healthy and in great shape to fly our friendly skies.

I agree there needs to be incentives to executives to guide a company to greatness. But this is ridiculous. I don't see if you're guaranteed $20 million how there's any reason to perform well. Take the Home Depot CEO who failed. Ridiculous.

Dear News

Jun. 8th, 2007 12:43 pm
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As sad and fun as it is to watch, please get Paris Hilton off my news.

Admittedly, it is juicy, watching a rich, privileged person get caught screaming for her mommy because she can't serve her sentence at home. I mean, it was only a DUI and getting caught twice for driving with a suspended license. Surely it's no big deal.

Way to serve as a role model.

Especially since she probably would have been released on good behavior in 5 days due to overcrowding of our jails.

Jesus.
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I find that if I want tv on in the background while I piddle about the house, I enjoy Google's Current TV. One example is this amusing installment of Viral Video Film School.

On the more serious side, NPR has been broadcasting the World Affairs Council conference at Asilomar for the past few nights. I hope they make it into a podcast, because I missed the first one, and part of the second one. I'm listening to the third part tonight, but this material is worth a second listen.
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What was the second most popular baby name in the UK last year?

Guess.

Okay, now see if you're right.
weaktwos: (Wow.)
This just in from the news that doesn't really matter, but we love it anyway: Paris Hilton is in Jail.

She was quoted as saying, "I'm really scared but I'm ready to do this," Hilton said. "And I hope that I'm an example to other young people."

Well, let's hope it's an example of what not to do and who not to be.

And Sarah Silverman brandishes her church-bell sized balls practically in Paris' face.

Trashy fun, people.
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This was interesting by way of Freakonomics Blog. Apparently there's a website that identifies who is receiving modified pleas to work with law enforcement to trap bigger fish. The Justice Department is concerned. But then again, the Justice Department hasn't been a good role model these days, anyway.

“The reality is this,” said a spokesman for the site, who identified himself as Anthony Capone. “Everybody has a choice in life about what they want to do for a living. Nobody likes a tattletale.”

Well, we don't necessarily like criminals, either.

Funny thing, apparently this information is obtained from court documents on the internet, and this site is just making it easier for people to find. So, it's not like the information was super sekrit, anyway.

However, it is funny to see who is running the site. As well as the attorney of the fellow running the site. Both of whom are incarcerated or soon to be as such.
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JC Christian, aka Jesus' General, brings us the methodology of Seattle PD in busting any prostitution crimes in strip clubs.

Yeah, of all the ways to investigate prostitution crimes, the men of Seattle came up with this ingenious plan. Uh huh.
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Rove is being investigated by the Office of Special Counsel.

It would be nice if he was neutralized. Then again, he's pretty darned crafty.

Tidbits

Apr. 23rd, 2007 02:29 pm
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Rumor has it new ipods will be released before the iPhone. If my *whack* phone doesn't *whack* break coincidentally about the time the new iPhone rolls out, I *whack* may just buy a 6g ipod in*whack*stead.* Hat tip to [livejournal.com profile] imlac.

Is Graduate School a Financial Mistake? Yes, sometimes. This a decision I was making back before I went to college to decide that I didn't want to take out any loans during my undergraduate program. I had researched what the starting salary was for lawyers, and estimated what debt I would have, and I decided that I'd rather not take loans during my undergraduate program. However, I later decided I didn't want to be a lawyer. And then I found a company that would pay for my masters. So, I dodged the bullet altogether.

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