June 2006


http://www.nashuatelegraph.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060629/NEWS01/106290121

Okay, I don’t even know where to begin.

I’m too busy to write a real “article”. Just read the above link and sit back and wonder what has become of America.

So let me get this straight — technology can be used against us – a camera at every red light, a tap on every phone, RFID chips on anything and everything, camera blockers to stop you from taking pictures of abuse, etc. etc.

But we can’t have video cameras in our own home?!?!?!?
What the fuck?

What the fuck?

What the fuck?

What the fuck?

What the fuck?

http://www.nashuatelegraph.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060629/NEWS01/106290121

I’m too busy to say much more about this, other than that I am totally freakin’ appaled.

We are living in a police state.  They can put cameras anywhere they want.  You cannot.  Technology can be used to oppress, but it cannot be used for the people.

Get used to it.

So, Katrina looters get 15 years in prison for looting 27 bottles of liquor and wine, six cases of beer, and one case of wine coolers. Now assuming this is good, $30/bottle tequilla, multiplied by 27, = $810, and 6 cases of beer at $10/each = $60, and the wine coolers = $20, we are talking about $890 worth of items.

That’s bad. But 15 years for 3 people? That’s 45 total years of incarceration. At an approximate cost of $30,000/yr, this means us taxpayers will have to pay $1,350,000 to “send a message setting an example”.

We call the Saudis barbaric for cutting the hands off of thieves. I am against the practice. But one has to wonder: Are we really any better? That $1,350,000 of taxpayer money could go to save lives. The damage done by taking away $1,350,000 from lifesaving services could very well be much greater than the damage of having 3 people’s hands cut off.

While I am against the Saudi practice, the American way is arguably much worse for humanity as a whole. It’s also spending 1516 times more money punishing them than how much they stole. That is, $1,350,00 dividied by $890 is 1516.

Isn’t justice grand?

Isn’t it good that our society is doing such a good job protecting us?

(Not that they were anywhere to be found during Katrina.)

This is so harsh that I must classify this as an abuse of authority. Stealing beer when society has completely crumbled is not worth spending 1516 times the cost of the crime on imprisoning them. Is it any wonder that the national debt is $120,000 per family? Why, 11 more families just inherited a $120,000 debt to pay for 3 thieves stealing beer.

People: These emotional responses to problems need to stop. Everyone needs to take a step back and take an impartial look at our justice system; it is an abject failure.

I need emergency roofing service. Now.

rotting corpseWell, I would say the corpse smell is still lingering. Maybe we need to close up the floorboards, now that the smell is only 5% of what it once was. My friend Greg Z stopped by, and I asked him to take an objective smell of the place when he walked into the door; but he didn’t smell anything. Of course, we had just burned a candle so that probably helped.

bad back painI’ve been sleeping on the couch to try to fix my back — for about 2 weeks now. But last night, I slept 10 hours (I usually sleep no more than 5.5). And the couch killed my back. I have not had a good back any day out of the last 6 weeks. I’m really not used to this crap.

But anyway, during my long 10-hour sleep, I had some crazy dreams. As did Carolyn, who apparantly dreamed that our friend Angel (link to her blog in sidebar) vomited on her.

nuclear bomb

So in my dream, there was a nuclear war. (more…)

"The Georgia Institute of Technology has completed a prototype device that cab block digital cameras. The system looks for the shape & reflectivity of a digital camera, saturating it with a beam of white light. They are expected to be used to protect areas such as government buildings, trade shows, and defeating video copying in theaters. The countermeasure: film."

Remember: Technology is an efficient enabler, but an even more efficient oppressor.

delme-brutality.jpgThink about Rodney King? The man had unnecessary force used against him in an extremely obvious way. Of course, all the officers involved still basically got away with it, and the L.A. Riots were completely justified. (None of the 2,000 people that were injured, or 40 people who were killed were justified.  But large scale civil unrest and general property damage was.  The system failed and there was no other recourse.  They moved the trial to an affluent town, and had a trial that was all white except for 1 Latino and 1 Asian.)

But think about police abuse, and the abuse of the state in general. Think about Tiananmen Square in China. Think about Guantanimo, and especially think about Abu Ghraib.

Do you think we would even know about such abuses, if CameraBusting technology was ubiquitous? Hell no. Just like most of China's citizens do not know about Tiananmen Square, most Americans would not know about Rodney King. Nobody would know about Abu Ghraib. (Which I admit I can't spell.)  Inverse surveillance may become impossible.

Technology is good. The advent of digital cameras, camera phones, camcorders, and all that jazz are a "check & balance", by the people, against their government. We are living in a rare time in which we have tools that can actually be used to "fight the power", and "catch corruption in the act".

It wont be long before this rare opportunity is over.  Once they perfect this type of technology, good luck capturing abuse.  Good luck knowing what is really happening.  We are being presented with a rare opportunity to change society, and that opportunity will soon be gone.

Imagine the police being able to beat anyone in broad daylight, knowing that it would be impossible to be filmed. Far-fetched? Only if you lack imagination. Technology is moving at what seems like an exponential rate, and I fear things are only going to get worse. 

I've personally been assaulted by an officer (strict legal definition: I was forcefully pushed away from a scene I was a witness to; I absolutely had business being there), have had a friend (age 16 at the time) had his head slammed repeatedly into a closed police car door while they shout "get in the car" (kinda impossible if the door isn't open), have had a gun pointed at my head for trying to ask directions, have had an officer give me a ticket for something he knows I didn't do, and have had a friend lose his car due to police testilying in court.

Were the Cyberpunk visionaries really that far off?

P.S. I've added this to my 'censorship' category because this is a form of censoring dissenting voices by depriving them of the evidence they need to support what they need to say.

//www.flickr.com/people/furiousgeorge81/
Photo by
http://www.flickr.com/people/furiousgeorge81/

So, it has now come out that the government is doing more than domestic wiretapping.  They spent *30 million* taxpayer dollars buying phone records from private data brokers.

Is this, too, part of "The Technology War" (my series of articles), where new technologies that are supposed to enrich our lives are instead used to oppress us?

The Associated Press story is HERE.

It is important to note that all of this is done without warrants or subpoenas.

We are all suspects, I mean "persons of interest". 

(Sorry, I forgot to use the new doublespeak, where "person of interest" is different than "suspect", "enemy combatant" is different than "prisoner of war", and "white phosphorous" is different than "napalm", and "rogue nation" only applies to when Iraq ignores the U.N., not to when the U.S. ignores the U.N.  But I'm getting off topic so I'll stop.)

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