Apparently the word has been spreading that the DOJ has been quietly whispering to ISPs about data retention, which — coupled with expanded warrantless searches of PATRIOT II — would put big brother in the thick of the Internet. Radley Balko is freaking out and sounding the klaxxons. On the other hand, Orin Kerr at the Volokh Conspiracy seems to think that this is overblown backroom talk about theoretical possibilities. I’m mixed on the immediate ramifications and lean more towards Kerr on this one, but on a longer timeline this kind of has me concerned.
Nevermind the logical implausibility of capturing every single packet on the router level, storing it in multiple-terrabyte (or more) databases and trying to data mine that — something even Google would be hard pressed to accomplish. Instead, let’s focus on this as a possibility perhaps 10 years down the line, when the technology to do this could actually catch up and data mining would be trivial.
What bothers me most isn’t the privacy concerns here, it’s the very likely possibility that the FBI could create a program that flags you for pre-emptive arrest based on likely characteristics and behavioral analysis of previous criminals, and chalk up your detention to “the greater good”.
Your ISP as Net watchdog [CNET News]
“Dude, the small- government- advocating, states- rights- supporting conservatives must’ve been totally high when they wrote that decision.” [via]
If political preference is genetic — as these scientists claim — then you’d think conservatives would pipe down on abortion (a largely liberal preference)
Well, the new poll options are up, and my slogan suggestion is coming in dead last. Well, I guess a slogan like that needs a strong image to compliment it anyways, so I’m not terribly surprised.
Regardless, go on over and vote for your favorite slogan for the drive.
As a side item, I’m working with a talented artist friend to create some libertarian tees that are more pop culture and less, uh… join us or die, republicrat pigfucker. I’m a huge advocate of using humor to break the ice with potential libertarians on common issues, and this would be a great way to have pride in libertarianism while being an active advocate.
At least one shirt will be ironic in nature (Dick and Jane in helmets, smiling gleefully under a surveillance camera, saying “Hooray, big government! Don’t vote Libertarian!”) while another is planned to be a bit of throwback to pre-revolution sentiment (Crates bearing libertarian grievances being thrown from a ship “Let’s party like it’s 1773!”).
Details of when the shirts will be for sale are tentative at the moment, but I’m currently exploring several venues for production. If anyone knows of any good quality silkscreeners (in Cleveland is ideal), let me know in the comments. I’d like to keep the selling price at $10, but that’s flexible if a chunk of profits can be directed towards libertarian media projects.
But back to the LP fundraising/membership efforts. I kinda doubt they’ll come close to the 5,000 new supporters mark, as that’s a pretty hefty number considering our media visibility. I do wish them the best of luck and hope they do some complimentary internet advertising to broaden the campaign visibility.
After promising not to create a passenger database, they get caught doing it anyways. Congress responded by shaking its fist in mock anger.
CJR piece on what it was like to be Hunter S. Thompson’s editor [via]
CEO and founder Bob Parsons blogs on his site (linked on front page) in favor of the Guantanamo Bay facility, vote with your dollars as you will. [via]
A request for comments on what the LP should be doing better. This will be merged into the reform platform for the 2006 regional candidates.
After dropping the N-Bomb and getting upbraided by Al Sharpton, Nader continues the slide into oblivion. Why is he still fundraising halfway into 2005? Tsk Tsk.
Refinery capacity is tight as are supplies, and demand keeps growing. Stocks went lower since transporting goods just got a little more expensive.
“The story of how government health agencies colluded with Big Pharma to hide the risks of thimerosal from the public is a chilling case study of institutional arrogance, power and greed.”
I know I always ask myself: “hey, I wonder how well Bush is running the U.S. government.” And apparently he is doing a very poor job of it, seeing as he doesn’t speak english very well
I know I always ask myself: “hey, I wonder how well the French are running the U.S. government.” And apparently they are doing a very poor job of it, seeing as they don’t speak english very well.
Reason: Hit & Run linked to a funny clip by Penn and Teller on the Patriot Act, but the real story here is how liberals (wild guess here, but valid) seem to perceive libertarians. Just check out these choice quotes from the comments:
“Penn & Teller made a few horrible episodes vilifying Chomsky and glorifying David Horowitz (college episode).”
“Have you seen conspiracy episode? They looked like Jeff Gannon and Armstrong Williams.”
[In response to: "These guys are libertarians"] “Which means, they were in tune with Repugn’ntOnes’ values until they [Republicans] went cultist theocratic, yet they still supported judge Janice Rogers Clown.”
“It’s fine and dandy that he’s against the Patriot Act, but Penn is generally a wingnut enabler.”
“This video clip is disinfo. Many of those who have already commented, noted that these potty mouthed guys have an agenda of their own. A clip like this does more damage to the cause of peace and honest governance than three years of nonstop Bill O’Reilly and Sean “Chubby” Hannity combined. It was not funny and had many untruths in it. In other words, it stunk.”
“Libertarians are basically insane. They have decided to live in a fantasy world with no government because they don’t like government or paying taxes. Well, I don’t like either, but grow up damn it. We all live on a planet with other people and we have to deal with them. Government is necessary. The trick is to make government accountable to the people and the least intrusive institution that it can be while being an ADVOCATE for the common good against private (read: CORPORATE) interests. Keeping the government in check is why it is imperative to have a free flow of information and a dogged, responsible news media.
As much as I like and appreciate P&T for their skepticism and deflating of sacred cows (which is healthy), I can’t stand libertarians. They are basically anarchists in all but name. They need to grow up and get a life.”
You better believe we have a major fucking publicity problem when people don’t even know what the hell we stand for.
Friday Fun Link [Hit & Run]
Penn & Teller: The Patriot Act is Bullshit [Crooks & Liars]
An interesting story over at the Washington Post caught my eye today, because it appears Bush is pushing a tax code reform panel’s deadline back from July 31st to September 30th:
Although the panel could have wrapped up its work on time, the administration felt that with a series of other initiatives under debate in Congress and the August recess approaching, “there is little capacity for public focus” on the tax issue right now, Treasury spokesman Taylor Griffin said.
“The administration and Congress are focused on a broad range of key presidential and congressional priorities over the remaining five weeks of the summer legislative session,” Griffin said.
[...]When Bush kicked off the Social Security push, some Republicans suggested he switch gears and pursue tax-reform first.
The Republicans are well aware that tax reform and tax cuts have been a driving issue with getting them votes, and I have no doubt they are going back to their rhetoric of tax cuts in order to milk this for all its worth in the 2006 races.
Here’s how libertarians can cut Republicans off at the pass and backhand the Democrats in the process: start focusing on spending spending spending and make it clear that no amount of tax reform or tax cuts rhetoric is going to do squat to strengthen our economy until that $7 trillion deficit is addressed honestly. I know, it’s politics, and it’s time we start acting like we know what the solution is instead of just the problem.
Bring up every single pork issue passed in the past two years that can haunt these congresscritters, take a camera to D.C. and ask them point blank why they are focusing on tax code instead of pork spending. Make them accountable, and stick the Libertarian Party’s fiscally conservative policies in their face until they puke.
Raise money and profile this way too, ask for donations to oust the biggest spendthrifts in Congress, and we might have a decent chance of putting them on the defensive and our own people in office.
Bush delays deadline for tax panel’s report [WaPo]
“I love freedom” is banned; Question: is this MS or China doing the censoring? [via]
MSNBC regarding Iraq, currently at 94% yes. oh snap, yo!
buying a large stake in China Construction Bank, they could easily turn the tide of the trade deficit, one overdraft fee at a time
third time in as many months? hmm… [via]
Ok Reuters and AP photogs, it was cute the first few of times, but now these “accidental” holy simulacrums are officially freaking me out… just a smidge. Then again, Bush could be “el salvador de los vatos” and we’d all be doomed for making fun of him, because he’d like… get all his homies to come mess us up, mang.
Google Search for “holy bush”
President Bush Makes Remarks at National Hispanic Prayer Breakfast [AP] [via]
Rare video of a rural protest showing hired thugs beating up and killing protesting villagers who disobey the gov’t
Uh oh, all is not well with red stater’s support for the war
Maybe it’s the SouthPark episode on the issue seeping into people’s collective reasoning, but it’s an odd day when I agree with Niel Boortz as he so succinctly kicks the Terry Schiavo pro-feeding-tubers to the curb:
It’s tough to admit that you were wrong. Been there many times. You believe something so strongly, only to find out that you were profoundly mistaken. You find out that Terri Schiavo’s brain was reduced to half its normal size. She had no cognitive abilities. She was not aware of her own existence. She didn’t even know she was alive, and therefore couldn’t know that death was a possibility. She wasn’t there. All that was left was the remains of the body that once had been Terri Schiavo .. clinging to the last threads of life.
I have an idea, how about instead of getting Congress to legislate bills for a single person in a case that’s blown out of proportion because the religious fundamantalists want to get their 15 minutes on TV, we remove the religious right-wing propaganda feeding tube from their small, uncognitive and blindered little brains.
UPDATE: Don’t forget about Doctor and Congressman Bill “I can diagnose your illness after watching some tapes on TV” Frist.
» South Park takes on Schiavo Case [DailyKos]
» The Schiavo Matter [boortz.com]
» Christian Groups Rally Support for Terri Schindler Schiavo [CNSNews]
» Frist Responsive to Factual Stimuli [Wonkette]