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warpath

Why Transparency?

Some people seem to remain unclear on why anyone would prefer transparency over secrecy.  One such group is the government.  But it’s awfully funny that they should not immediately know the value of transparency, since they are renowned for going to extraordinary lengths (including waterboarding, extraordinary rendition, espionage, infiltration, warrantless wiretaps and tracking devices, billion dollar satellites, remote-controlled airplanes, developing mind-control psychotropics, and training cats and dolphins for military purposes) to gain information.

The problem is, I guess, that information in the wrong hands leads to the nations that receive aid in exchange for military cooperation (in secret, due to disapproval of their population) having more leverage in negotiating cooperative agreements.  Information in the hands of the unwashed masses leads to a breakdown of the ability for monopolistic resource extraction by corporations, and it destroys monopolistic supplier agreements.  It leads to greater competition, and it leads to more democracy.

Why is democracy a problem?  It’s a problem because people with the right to choose will seldom choose to perpetuate systems of control in which their children die from dehydration and polluted water sources while water bottling operations continue to ship potable water around the world.  It’s a problem, because illegitimate governments wither away, and sustainable alternatives crop up in their place.

The people that see certain information as harmful must ask themselves why we should continue to operate under such a double standard, and if they cannot satisfy themselves with an answer, they ought to reform their position or resign it.

The western world has claimed to seek the development of democracy around the world for the better part of a century (and in some ways since its inception).  Why stop now, when it’s within reach?

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warpath

Democracy, Now?

“It’s too soon,” he said.  “If we give them freedom now, we won’t live to see the sunset.”

He walked up to the window bars and looked out over his constituents.  “They just don’t understand,” he sighed.  “It’s a dangerous world, and we’re just trying to protect them.”

He waved his hand at the guard by the gate.

With that, the gas canisters were fired, and the men and women and the children outside the gates pulled up their face covers, expecting the burning they knew so well, expecting the heaving and knowing the batons were coming.

But the batons remained in the belt loops, protected behind the gates.  The gas was no longer tear gas that merely burned the eyes and lungs.  It was replaced with a deadly neurotoxin.  Cheaper this way: no prisons, no trials, and certainly no lawyers or courts.

Four hours later when the last of the protestors had finally dropped dead from the final chemically-induced brain hemmorhage, he waved his hand again.  More gas, this time a neutralizer that would clear the air.

As he walked over the bodies later that evening, he picked up a baseball cap, dusted it off, and put it on his head.  “Just keeping them safe. Play ball.”

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warpath

RNC-watch

Ah, the RNC will soon be kicking off and as I’m sure you’ve read from various news sources as I have, the Minneapolis and St. Paul area police (and apparently the J. Edgarites, too) have been given warrants that logic dictates violate the 4th Amendment the the Constitution of the United States of America.  They’ve been raiding the homes of citizens and of protest groups without oath or affirmation supporting these warrants.  These raids are part of an effort to preemptively disrupt the peaceful assemblies to protest the RNC this week.  They’ve been acting like a bunch of stinking idiots and yet their activities are publicly funded.

Anyway, this stuff makes me pretty angry and only serves to affirm my beliefs about the GOP as a corporate-fueled death machine bent on the violent and wholesale ownership of the future of mankind.  Sigh.  And that’s not at all to say that all Republicans are part of it or that one hand even knows what the other is doing.  These cops and their bosses think of this as business as usual and that’s probably true: given the authority to conduct these liberty-suppression activities they probably serve the interests of their employers as the media mostly ignores them and what little they do cover serves to reinforce the average American’s belief that some folks wanting to protest war and corruption are bleeding-heart hippies that don’t contribute to society.

I feel that they do contribute and that their cause is just.  Here are some sources of information about these raids and I’m sure that these sites can lead you to more details about what’s going on in Minnesota:

That’s just a handful I’ve pulled quickly.  Also note that the links may not be targeted to specific details of the current activities, so if you are looking at this post in the medium-to-long term you’ll probably have to search those sites for details on these events.

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warpath

Anti-Advertising Rant

I don’t like advertising.  Sometimes it can be ahem tolerable.  But most of the time I go out of my way to avoid it.

In fact, web ads are blocked. On the rare occasions I’m reading a magazine of a topic I care about I am prepared to ignore them.  Once a week when I read the Sunday New York Times, I ignore them.  And, television ads are mostly skipped automatically using the MythTV commercial flagging system.

So occasionally I end up watching ads, when MythTV fails to detect them properly. I’m accustomed to the auto-skip so I don’t realize what’s happening for a few seconds.  If it’s a decent premise I’ll watch an advert until I get tired of it or I feel like I’m actively being targeted to buy the product.

What troubles me is these annoying jingles.  They’re designed to be annoying and to burrow themselves into your brain like a mole and root around in there until you can’t get the bugger out.  And they can just pop into your head.

Let me clarify.  Music pops into my head all day long.  All the songs I know and love from all the bands I know and love: I’ll be doing the laundry and suddenly it’s California Redemption provides him with his rent, room and board inside of a fifth of Comfort, or I’ll be going through my RSS reader hearing, he’s an elevator passenger, bored as he can be and that’s cool.  I don’t always have headphones on or music handy, but you listen to music enough it’s just with you and it’s a thrill to have around.

I could be 90 years old with dimentia or alzheimers or some other form of mental decline, laying in my own piss and singing your stupid fucking jingles in my head.  Is that what you want?  Sick bastards.  I take time and put effort into finding good music to have stuck in my head.  And now any jackass with the money to put some crap product and a tv jingle out has access to me for the rest of my bloody life.

That’s unethical, I’m fucking sorry.

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warpath

Mukasey Admits to Conspiracy

The Attorney General has admitted that he willfully conspires to avoid enforcing the law.  Congress should impeach him.  The law must be upheld and those guilty parties must be tried publicly for the government to continue to function at all.  It is unconsciounable to have public servants directly and flagrantly violate the will of the people as codified in statute.

That is all.