piranha: red origami crane (Default)
ACTA = Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement

we need a global DMCA like we need a hole in the head. we also don't need to make ISPs responsible for their users' copyright violations, and for sure we don't need service providers to proactively police for them -- that'll just about close down sites like youtube and flickr; nevermind blogger, livejournal, and dreamwidth.

dear white house: transparency? you promised, didn't you?

what's with the freaking secrecy about the copyright treaty then? how is this in any way a national security issue?

or are you just trying to hide what an execrable piece of shite this is for anyone but the RIAA, MPAA and large corporations jealously guarding their copyright way beyond what copyright law was ever intended to do? anti-counterfeiting? where are china and russia in these talks? no, this is instead pushing copyright even further than you've already pushed it.

- michael geist has info on ACTA.
- IDG news service has some more.
- so does numerama (in french)
-
the EFF chimes in.
- and lawfont in australia.
- needless to say, cory doctorow is unhappy.
piranha: hate is not a family value,rainbow-coloured (anti-shrubwads)
i watched the whole thing on CSPAN (thank you CSPAN, btw, for regularly being the best source for information, unfiltered and undistorted by talking heads who're all too often not thinking heads).

now, i don't really think much of marches, unless they can bring incredible numbers, and this one was unlikely to do that. but i think now that i was wrong. i had forgotten the incredible energy a good rally that connects you with many like-minded people can provide, and that energy goes back home with you, and provides you with more oomph to continue the fight.

there were some really excellent speeches, and i wrote down a lot of quotes from people who impressed me specifically. see them here )

what struck me most poignantly is the contrast between this rally and the teaparty event last month. for one, this was an incredibly racially diverse crowd, not just whites. and these people have suffered throughout their lives tremendously more than the teapartiers; they have every reason to be seriously pissed off -- and yet the rally wasn't filled with hatred; the signs weren't crude, insulting, nor disgusting; the atmosphere was positive, focussed on working together despite the obstacles.

if "by their fruits you shall know them" it was pretty obvious to me whose fruit is spoiled and rotted, and whose is wholesome.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
rant #1: on obama getting the nobel peace prize.

oh yeah, i was surprised. my first impulse was that it was too early, that he hadn't done much yet, that he was still involved in two wars, still shooting missiles into pakistan. but then i started thinking about prior nobel awards, and about what he _had_ done so far.

the nobel prize is sometimes awarded for potential, for making the right moves towards peace in a way that could really change the world if they succeeded. when awarded for that, it's an award to draw attention to those moves, to give support and encouragement. rabin and arafat were awarded a nobel for their moves towards recognizing each other's right to exist. kissinger was awarded a nobel for trying to get out of vietnam. they certainly didn't get it for what they had done with their lives previously, for their general peacefulness. and neither went as far as one might have hoped. but giving the awards was important at the time. and anyone who screams that the award has been tainted by giving it to obama needs to do some fsucking research.

the furor from republican mouth pieces about obama's win was sadly only to be expected. apparently if obama does it, it's ok to side with hamas and the taliban in one's criticism. the party of "no" is becoming increasingly anti-american. i thought after the election things would calm down, but instead they're becoming worse and worse -- and my own reaction to republicans is becoming worse as well. i don't want to read anyone anymore who throws their lot in with people who're this unhinged; it gives me stomach cramps (i am not kidding; the pure hatred that comes from followers of limbaugh and beck makes me ill, and worries me sick). every time i see obama in the trending topics on twitter i expect that he has been assassinated by somebody whipped into a murderous frenzy by those people.

but what's also ridiculous is all this yammering by others about how he doesn't "deserve" it. and "what has he done?". can those people not read? the nobel committee said why they gave it to him.

obama is getting this award because he's the man with the right vision for a more peaceful world at the right time in the right place. it's an encouragement for his politics of dignity. if one know nothing of the world one won't see that, but outside of the US obama has a huge amount of credibility, and has single-handedly turned the view of the US around from being a scary, warmongering imperialist into something civilized again. i can think of other people who'd deserve the nobel peace prize for what they have done, yes. but i can't think of anyone who'd deserve it as encouragement for what they CAN do better than obama. he's not the messiah (*rolls eyes*), but he's a pivotal character at a critical time.

the nobel peace prize for obama is meant to be a call to world-wide positive action in the areas of nuclear disarmament, climate control, easing of tensions between religious groups. here's hoping it bears some fruit.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
progress marches on in new england. the bill passed relatively smoothly through the legislature, but conservative groups are arming for a ballot initiative in november's elections.

governor baldacci was previously opposed to same-sex marriage, but said his own views evolved over time:

"I did not come to this decision lightly or in haste. I have come to believe that this is a question of fairness and of equal protection under the law, and that a civil union is not equal to civil marriage."

matthew daly has some very good thoughts on why this is actually better than california and new york leading the way.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
arlen specter switched parties.

"As the Republican Party has moved farther and farther to the right, I have found myself increasingly at odds with the Republican philosophy and more in line with the philosophy of the Democratic Party."

i care less about the 60 seats than i care about the psychological effects, because IMO 60 seats don't safely convey a filibuster-proof majority. senators do not always vote the party line, moderates on both sides move to the other side on many important issues. but it will be a psychological stick in the eye, and that's worth something. it might also make it a bit harder for the GOP to lean on their most moderate members, such as olympia snowe.

this is what happens if you totally fuck up your party by letting amoral arseholes like limbaugh set the tone, and by playing more and more to your socially conservative base; you lose your moderate members.

please keep doing that. make it into a death spiral. long-term the 2-party system in the US needs to be replaced to more adequately represent a broader number of voters.
piranha: hate is not a family value,rainbow-coloured (anti-shrubwads)
for becoming the 4th US state to legalize same-sex marriage. there is a part of the new law that makes me somewhat uncomfortable -- not only religious institutions are exempted from having to perform services for same-sex couples, but also religiously motivated groups (like the knights of columbus can refuse to rent same-sex couples their hall for the reception). on the positive side, neither general vendors (caterers, florists) nor justices of the peace may do so, and if religious organizations accept state funds they will be required to adhere to the terms as well.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
by now i imagine everyone has seen the republican budget plan, and i don't think there is anything new i can say. besides, i am still sorta speechless.

but i decided it needed some presentational pizazz to make it more appropriate, a bit more dazzle to cover up the bullshit; a more suitable font, for one, and...


maybe i should throw in a vampire?
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
byebye, shrubwad. hope to see you in court.

now to see which of the atrocious laws and regulations of the bush era can and will be rolled back or successfully repealed. i'm not exactly hopeful in that regard. but i am breathing a little easier today.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
and here i thought there would be a little political peace on the north american home front.

then came blagojevich's press conference.

imagine a huge ASCII-art OMG here.

have you seen this? you must. this marries chutzpah with incompetence in a rarely seen display, and for good measure it comes with some nutty prayer sprinkled on top. for all i know burris is innocent as the white-driven snow, but he made himself look corrupt just by the way he handled this press conference, and completely avoided legitimate questions.

part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fBStRU2QRqo
part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFFJwwQx5Z0

and wow, congressman rush. that wasn't just the race card, that was an entire race deck.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
change.gov is open for questions.

i'll be interested to see what comes of this. i am sure this is not the best format because there's already a lot of repetition.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
ok, i've been trying very hard to avoid anything about palin since the election, but this one blindsided me, and i can't keep myself from helping it go viral -- i laughed so hard i was truly almost rolling on the floor.

be warned, slaughter of turkeys and of the english language happens simultaneously. i am not kidding about the turkeys. (i am also not kidding about the language, but people are less likely to be grossed out by that.)


surreal. i adore the cameraperson.

(via huffpo.)
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
thank to minnesota public radio, you can have have a look at some ballots challenged during the ongoing recount for the senate race between norm coleman and al franken. you can even vote for which way the challenge should be decided if you were the judge. :)

it's illuminating because it's astounding what all people do instead of just filling in their bubble of choice. ballot design must be something that drives the designers crazy. (i think BC's ballots are the best i have ever seen; they're all black with white text and a large white circle next to the candidate's name in which to make one's mark with a pencil.)

btw, so far franken has gained 43 votes after 15.49% of votes recounted, and he's now only 172 behind coleman. the precincts counted were slightly redder than average.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
it's finally official: obama wins 1 electoral vote in nebraska. NEBRASKA!!!

awesome.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
goes to obama, says the AP.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)

cotoneaster

slept most of the day, after spending my random drawing win from fictionwise -- 10% off my order, woohoo! i don't recall the last time i won something, and certainly never online.

still very caught up in the aftershocks of the election, watching the outstanding races. trying to avoid palin news, but since the long knives are out, that's sorta difficult. and a part of me likes to see that. i found her choice to be the most overall cynical and corrupt thing in this campaign; a true insult to people's intelligence as well as their sense of what should and should not be done in a political campaign. and part of me wants to not just see her go away, but wants the spirit she cast over the country to be staked and buried, so it won't ever return, wants the far-"christian" right to be decisively repudiated as the hateful stain they are on a nation that could be so much more.

i am all for getting together -- with people of character even if they believe in different economic principles, the right to bear arms, and the like. but just as those who would disdain and oppress a person for the colour of their skin need to be called out on it as woefully morally WRONG, so need those who would do the same thing to gays and to muslims.

on a more happy note, mangy-cat let me pet him today and purred up a storm. mangy-cat is a boy, as it turns out. and i don't know how long i can withstand taking him in. *wry grin*.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
i'll never forget this election, ever. no US election has been this amazing and important for me. that this is possible in the US, especially after the dark time of the last 8 years, that's such a marvelous thing.

ok, i need a kleenex.

ohio

Nov. 4th, 2008 18:24
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
for obama. that's it.

Y-E-S.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
is too close to call.

that's what i was hoping for.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
satirists would be out of work.

the "masked avengers", a well-known montréal comedy duo, prank sarah palin by posing as french president nicolas sarkozy. she never catches on, not even when "sarkozy's" statements become quite outrageous (though she clearly does not feel entirely comfortable when he talks about the porn video).

read the transcript.

i don't blame her for not knowing french, or even the name of the premier of québec (jean charest), but not knowing the name of the prime minister (stephen harper)? of the country bordering her state rather more than russia?

did you notice how the fauxsy accent was completely not in evidence? and what's with that giddy schoolgirl tone? is that what makes her so "likeable" to her supporters? *shudder*.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
another republican votes for obama.

(i really need an image for this.)

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