"Apparently there is nothing Apple can do to get us mad at them. They’re dodgin’ taxes, they got suicide prevention nets outside their hell factories. We could find out they’re using kitten hearts to power iPhones and we’d be like ‘Well, if it doubles battery life, I’ll take two."

— Jon Stewart (via kristinastewartcolbert)

(via truth-has-a-liberal-bias)

think-progress:

You’ve heard the news.
But what does this mean for your privacy?

In a recent report card from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), comparing which tech companies protect user’s data from government snooping, Yahoo received one of the lowest scores with only one out of five stars. Tumblr performed significantly better, receiving three stars for requiring a warrant for content, fighting for users’ privacy rights in Congress, and publishing law enforcement guidelines.

think-progress:

You’ve heard the news.

But what does this mean for your privacy?

In a recent report card from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), comparing which tech companies protect user’s data from government snooping, Yahoo received one of the lowest scores with only one out of five stars. Tumblr performed significantly better, receiving three stars for requiring a warrant for content, fighting for users’ privacy rights in Congress, and publishing law enforcement guidelines.

Silence kills

TL;DR

Some people don’t want to hear any more about the recent slaughter of innocent Americans. Too bad. Silence on this subject perpetuates the status quo and therefore makes those who keep silent directly complicit in the continuation of these unacceptable events. People react to, and express grief differently, but if you’re not horrified, sad, and extremely angry at yet another of these incidents along with the daily occurrence of gun violence, there is something fundamentally wrong with your humanity.

It’s time for gun control reform. Our current approach is a completely unacceptable failure. Gun ownership needs to be treated at least as stringently as owning and operating a vehicle with age requirements, training, testing, registration, sales tracking, and with regularly repeated renewals of licenses required. Various types of weapons should require their own certification. Ammunition access should be limited in quantity and also tracked and sold only to licensed weapons owners and dealers. The size of clips need to be limited as well. Secure storage of weapons and ammunition needs to be a requirement also since this is how most guns end up in the hands of criminals, children, and impaired individuals. Even more rigorous training by professional experts should be required for conceal and carry permits.

The arguments I hear in favor of the status quo are fallacious:

“If you take away our guns, only criminals will have guns”- No, people who are competent and skilled will have guns to protect themselves and for target shooting and hunting purposes.

“People determined to kill can kill with other weapons” True, but not with the efficiency of guns. 22 people were reportedly stabbed in China on the same day as the CT. school shootings, none of them died. It’s far, far easier to disarm or escape from someone who doesn’t have a gun.

“Terrorists killed thousands with only box cutters or fertilizer” Yes, and we enacted stringent regulations in response to decrease the possibility of those events reoccurring. That’s what we need to do with guns which have killed far more people in the US than terrorist acts and the wars that followed combined.

“If someone at the theater, school, etc. had been armed, they could have stopped the monster” It’s extremely unlikely that in a chaotic, crowded situation that an untrained gunslinger would do anything other than shoot more innocent bystanders. Even trained law enforcement officers shoot bystanders in these crowded chaotic situations. There’s lots of armchair Dirty Harry’s out there who live in a tv fantasy world where they are dead eye shots and heroes. The reality of facts say otherwise. Arming everyone to the teeth is only a guarantee of even more death and mayhem.

“The 2nd Amendment guarantees our right to bear arms” Only in regards to a well regulated militia using muskets. What’s the name of your militia and who is it regulated by? We have already established that certain people may have gun ownership denied such as felons. It is not a precedent to extend those restrictions to those deemed incompetent to own fire arms.

The NRA is one of the most powerful lobbies in the world. It’s dedicated to preserving an industry worth billions. It could give a rat’s ass about you or your loved one’s safety. Its message of fear is meant to inspire sales and nothing more. There is nothing noble or patriotic whatsoever in supporting them.

It’s well past time to speak out loudly enough to drown out big money lobbyists and demand change.

Fall on Main St. USA

Fall on Main St. USA

I just liked this entry way.

I just liked this entry way.


truth-has-a-liberal-bias:
Zakaria: Incarceration nation
By Fareed Zakaria, CNN
Something caught my eye the other day: Pat Robertson, the high priest of the religious right, had some startling things to say about drugs.
“I really believe we should treat marijuana the way we treat beverage alcohol,” Mr. Robertson said in a recent interview. “I’ve never used marijuana and I don’t intend to, but it’s just one of those things that I think. This war on drugs just hasn’t succeeded.”
The reason Robertson is for legalizing marijuana is that it has created a prison problem in America that is well beyond what most Americans imagine.
“It’s completely out of control,” Mr. Robertson said. “Prisons are being overcrowded with juvenile offenders having to do with drugs. And the penalties - the maximums - some of them could get 10 years for possession of a joint of marijuana. It makes no sense at all.”
He’s right. Here are the numbers: The total number of Americans under correctional supervision (prison, parole, etc.) is 7.1 million, more than the entire state of Massachusetts. Adam Gopnik writes in the New Yorker, “Over all, there are now more people under ‘correctional supervision’ in America…than were in the Gulag Archipelago under Stalin at its height.”
No other country comes even close to our rates of incarceration. We have 760 prisoners per 100,000 people. Most European countries have one seventh that number (per capita, so it’s adjusted for population). Even those on the high end of the global spectrum - Brazil and Poland - have only a quarter the number we do.
If you say this is some kind of enduring aspect of America’s “Wild West” culture, you would be wrong. In 1980, our rates of incarceration were a quarter what they are now. What changed was the war on drugs and the mindless proliferation of laws that created criminal penalties for anything and everything. […]

Pat Robertson talking sense makes me uneasy.

truth-has-a-liberal-bias:

Zakaria: Incarceration nation

By Fareed Zakaria, CNN

Something caught my eye the other day: Pat Robertson, the high priest of the religious right, had some startling things to say about drugs.

“I really believe we should treat marijuana the way we treat beverage alcohol,” Mr. Robertson said in a recent interview. “I’ve never used marijuana and I don’t intend to, but it’s just one of those things that I think. This war on drugs just hasn’t succeeded.”

The reason Robertson is for legalizing marijuana is that it has created a prison problem in America that is well beyond what most Americans imagine.

“It’s completely out of control,” Mr. Robertson said. “Prisons are being overcrowded with juvenile offenders having to do with drugs. And the penalties - the maximums - some of them could get 10 years for possession of a joint of marijuana. It makes no sense at all.”

He’s right. Here are the numbers: The total number of Americans under correctional supervision (prison, parole, etc.) is 7.1 million, more than the entire state of Massachusetts. Adam Gopnik writes in the New Yorker, “Over all, there are now more people under ‘correctional supervision’ in America…than were in the Gulag Archipelago under Stalin at its height.”

No other country comes even close to our rates of incarceration. We have 760 prisoners per 100,000 people. Most European countries have one seventh that number (per capita, so it’s adjusted for population). Even those on the high end of the global spectrum - Brazil and Poland - have only a quarter the number we do.

If you say this is some kind of enduring aspect of America’s “Wild West” culture, you would be wrong. In 1980, our rates of incarceration were a quarter what they are now. What changed was the war on drugs and the mindless proliferation of laws that created criminal penalties for anything and everything. […]

Pat Robertson talking sense makes me uneasy.

meikomusic:

I’m so happy!! My song, “Reasons to Love You” is gonna be played on the radio in Tokyo today (InterFM). One step closer to my dream of visiting Japan!! YAY!!

discoverynews:

Penguins Live and Chatty All Day 
Yes, yesterday there were baby polar bear cams, and there are panda cams, and now a penguin cam!!!
This live video of the “Penguin Encounter” at SeaWorld San Diego is fascinating. I just watched them eat, and one of them get up and close and personal with the cam. (see above) 
Live Q&A sessions happen every Monday from noon to 12:30 p.m. ET starting Monday, March 19. Boookmark it, Tumblr!

discoverynews:

Penguins Live and Chatty All Day

Yes, yesterday there were baby polar bear cams, and there are panda cams, and now a penguin cam!!!

This live video of the “Penguin Encounter” at SeaWorld San Diego is fascinating. I just watched them eat, and one of them get up and close and personal with the cam. (see above) 

Live Q&A sessions happen every Monday from noon to 12:30 p.m. ET starting Monday, March 19. Boookmark it, Tumblr!

(Source: news.discovery.com, via truth-has-a-liberal-bias)