Steve's Views Rotating Header Image

Politics

John Ridley, Virginia Tech, Iraq and the news media

There is a huge misunderstanding as to what constitutes news worthy.

The argument that people have the right to know is so abused it is not funny.

I’d say to anyone ruining peoples lives for no other reason than it being news worthy or the right for the people to know, let’s display Your used underwear on national news. After all, we have the right to know what kind of lives the people who bring us all this important news, lives!

The news media have removed dignity from the media as John Ridley pointed out on MSNBC. I’ve not followed what he stands for, but he’s certainly were dead on with that comment.

By never headlining terrorist or other criminal actions in the news, the acts would loose value. Terror requires news to be really successful. If news also got a proper balance, where good things that affects the whole nation is headlined and bad things that affects some single family is on page 22, we would slowly be improving peoples values.

If we did not make all the scary things that happened to some family look like the norm, Americans would not be so afraid or each other and be more caring. Which would snowball and raise our overall quality of lives.

Sure, it would take some time to “un-educate” people, but the price would be worth it. My family have gone for years without TV and newspapers and guess what! We are a very happy family. We are not afraid of our neighbors and we commit random acts of kindness to complete strangers. My kid complained when I removed the TV, but after a month I got a thank you, and a hug for caring.

A silly question is being asked about why Cho killed all these people at Virginia Tech. Which is why did he do it?

I call it silly because it is very obvious. In the previous last eight school shootings, including Columbine, the shooter(s) were on mind altering drugs. Just like Cho. People keep thinking that drugs=good, even though it’s very clear that people on drugs do crazy things. Ah, you say, these are prescription drugs!

True, but have you looked at what those drugs do? Did you know why many of those drugs now carry the black danger label? There is no coincident that Cho was so homocidial. People need to wake up to the side effects of these mind altering drugs and reach for natural solutions!

During a quick survey I found that there are a lot of natural solutions. In my experience drugs NEVER actually address the real why. They only address the symptoms. For the last 30 years I’ve never taken even a headache pill. When I have an headache it’s usually for not eating or drinking well or enough. Eating and or drinking water has always handled it. Of course I don’t drink sodas with dinner (or almost ever). When I eat it’s usually fairly healthy. If you pack yourself full of sugars you should expect headaches and poor health.

Having traveled across several continents and looked into the nooks and crannies of life I can tell you that Americans are being spoonfed bad news relative to most other countries.

I wondered why that was, and realized that the pursuit of money has been too much for most editors, including a lot of other people. Messed up education in homes and schools have done a good job. In our attempts to be politically correct, we’ve lost sight of what is really important. I’m not saying you should be rude and so on. But things have gone too far in many areas.

In the vying for your attention, editors have lost track of all things valuable to man. I’m talking about integrity, responsibility, decency, humanity and most other valuable attributes most people natively have in common.

Then we have the misdirects that is being done by those defending our war in Iraq. What is the first thing a person done who’s guilty of something? He or she tries to turn attention away from themselves. Accusing you for their own crime is typical.

The same can be observed by those defending the war by calling you un-american, against our troops and so on. What is bad is to send our troops into Iraq on false pretenses and properly care for them. Playing the troop card is in really poor taste and nothing but an attempt to turn the attention away from themselves.

Now, if you instead put attention and expanded upon great things that people did to each other, accomplishments and resolutions of problems, guess what? We’d have happier people and a greater nation.

The saying, you get what you put your attention on, applies. Let’s try to focus a bit more on all the good and positive things that people do every day. Let’s make bad news a little less important, and share more positive than negative news with others.

DRM is not for stopping piracy…

In an article in ARS Technica (http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20070115-8616.html)
we find the headline “Privately, Hollywood admits DRM isn’t about piracy”.

This is a very telling article showing what we have been thinking all along, Hollywood studios execs knows a lot about greed and avarice [An excessive or inordinate desire of gain; greediness for wealth].

It is one thing to mass produce illegal copies of movies for profit, quite another to watch a DVD movie when and where you decide. As we see the studios want to not only have a say of when and where you watch your legally obtained DVD, but actually control it.

For example I never believed that CD sale went down because of piracy. Besides from organized mass piracy, the people who does most of the copying are students, known for being poor. People who cannot afford to buy a lot, but with a great interest in music.

The smart thing to do is to get people educated and used to listening to music. Make it easy so that when they enter the profitable part of their life, they are already avid music lovers. I loved the idea of being able to discover some new music online and go out and buy the CD. Now you don’t dare looking for music. Subsequently I don’t buy any. I listen to radio and my existing collection instead.

When Napster hit the world sales of CDs went up, not down. When Napster went down so did CD sales.

But avarice seem to have this side effect of not being able to see clearly. Even if it is staring you in the face. So rather than fostering music lovers they sue pre-teens and senior citizens for tens of thousand dollars and use scare tactics to make them settle out of court.

Having big dollars makes it possible to go after average people who usually have no possibility to mount an effective defense. Their only hope is to settle out of court.

That turns out to be their only safe way of making money as they are rapidly discovering that the courts are starting to notice that they don’t actually have any good evidence that the alleged pirate IS a pirate. They have only gotten this far by screaming foul play and playing on lawmakers dislike of crime. In reality one might successfully argue that the real criminals may very well be the ones doing the suing.

MPAA head Jack Valenti actually lobbied to have the discretion to erase your hard drive if they detected foul play. We know what disaster that would have been as they have a very high rate of false detections.

Just look at Microslob, eh soft, ability to turn out safe software. They want you to trust them to manage what you run on your computer. To make sure nothing illegal occurs. Feel like a criminal yet? If you create people like criminals you will get more criminals. Again, blinded by avarice.

Never mind someone breaking through their “safety” schemes and taking over your computer.

The only way these things get a hold in society is because people are in general naive and too lazy to pay attention. There was a group lobbying for ten years for something which turns out to be quite insane like the ability to pick up anyone off the street for drug treatments. But after ten years a government was ready to let it pass because “they have tried for so long” and felt sorry for them.

Fortunately some people who cared discovered what was about to happen and managed to stop it by running a hard campaign educating the senators what they were about to pass.

We will be abused as long as we are ignorant and uncaring about each other. Usually all it takes is for someone to stand up and say something to open a door for a handling. But too many people just look the other way. A good saying goes something like “The price of freedom is the constant alertness and willingness to fight back”. Don’t let 9/11 or lazy ignorance turn this into a police state. Stand up and do something about it!

ESR -“unethical to use closed source software”

What would be unethical is to unlawfully take and use s/w not licensed to be so obtained/used/shared.

There’s nothing remotely counter survival in making and selling closed source s/w. There’s a choice to use it or not, and that’s about it.

ESR (Eric S. Raymond) would like everyone to think it’s unethical, but he’s simply over promoting a way of life. His way of life.

Closed source s/w has and does help a ton of people to live better lives. Just like open source does.

Society lives and breathes through exchange. You contribute and receive exchange for it. Closed or open source will hardly fit the bill as unethical.

Arguing that society would look much better with only open source s/w is like saying society would look a lot better with only free food, or free plumbing. Saying that non-free food or plumbing is unethical does not work either, as long as these people produce and charge a fair price.

It all comes down to this idea that ESR would seemingly want to see money disappear. Which would bring us waaay back to when you had to swap products & services to exchange with others.

Money was a great evolutionary step, unless you are incompetent and unwilling to produce and like to live by being a freeloader. (It used to be easy to get a night of free food and lodging in earlier days.) A society functions so much better through this idea that money will give you value for your products and services. I never liked the idea of dragging livestock and what nots around.

For example. You cannot travel very well without money. Let’s say you produce a lot of value in one community. It could be said that you have credit with people as you and your products/services are well known. But then as soon as you leave how do you retain that value?

Today’s society could certainly work in theory on open source only. Without any money being charged for software. The problem is that some people make a living coding, and it would be very unethical to stop them from their choice of earning an honest living. Just like it would be to stop a farmer from doing the same. A better way would be to allow for other types of exchanges to freely exist, for those who so choose. The important parts are production and exchange.

For those of us using open source, we should probably be more interested in contributing back, than harassing people about closed source. You offer it and to the degree it is contributed back to that degree it will be successful. Certainly a lot of good is and will continue to come out of open source.

Mouse Rage Syndrome

This is one of the dumbest things I’ve heard in a long time!

It has NOTHING to do with the websites, the Internet or anything else.

Take a guy who’s inept at something, anything. Let’s say fishing. He does not know how to attach the hook, that a bait can help or which bait is appropriate at the type of fish. He gets the idea to go fishing to impress his new girlfriend or whatever. He tells her he’s going to bring home some nice fish.

Now let him at it for long enough time and after enough frustration you may notice a quickening of the heart, profuse sweating, and furious tossing around and bashing the equipment. In extreme cases, the ailment can be identified by loud screaming.

Does that mean we have a new “fishing syndrome”?

No, all it means is that the guy is overwhelmed, frustrated or whatever. Nothing a good rest, or a walk cannot fix. Maybe some food and a rest is really what he needs. Then someone showing him how to fish.

Maybe you are at work and you told your tough boss that You’re The Man for the job, but you find there’s something you don’t understand and cannot get it right. As the deadline approaches and you’re still fighting to get it done you may notice a quickening of the heart, profuse sweating, and furious tossing around and bashing the equipment. In extreme cases, the ailment can be identified by loud screaming.

These “syndromes” are nothing but another attempt to make you think you suffer from a syndrome of sorts, but fortunately it’s nothing we can’t fix with the right psychotropic drug treatment. Unfortunately a lot of people have bought into that pseudo science. Which mostly lines someones pockets.

Did you know that during the world war in Britain not a single case of insanity was reported? But somehow here we all suffer from something unheard of 50 years ago. And Somehow it can all be treated with some drug!?

Actually the content of handbook used for billing treatments is voted in. They don’t scientifically discover some ailment but vote it in by popular vote. Yeah, Mouse Rage Syndrome my foot!

Teenscreen Fright

Wow!

Now this got me really scared! Some guys who are receiving money from the drug companies are doing suicide interviews to see if our school kids are in risk of committing suicide. Schools in turn receive more money for each kid on drugs!

First off I never thought about suicide as a child, I know of no normal child that has.

Secondly, steering them into evaluating suicide is not what you want to do.

Third, what constitutes a suicide indicator? Well questions like have you ever felt scared? Or uncomfortable in front of people? They offer kids pizza and movie tickets if they take these tests. Which will then label them for life.

Fortunately there is a lot of awareness coming up on these scam artists nationwide.

There is a teen screen link on Youtube. Check it out!

To mine, and many other parents, relief teen screen is running into very strong opposition all over the country and is not doing well at all. Some of the people at the top of teen screen is also being found lying to bodies like the US Congress.

Washington who?

ANYONE running for office, should be mandated to spend a month studying and learning about the one man all Americans owe a debt to, President George Washington.

The man set a standard that is hard to follow, yet something every man can achieve.

His total dedication to honor and integrity no doubt kept him alive as he personally lead his troops, not from afar or even the rear, but from the very front, during eight years of war. His clothes had bullet holes. His horses were shot out under him. Yet this man not only survived uninjured, but managed to take on the mightiest military nation in the world, and win, with a rag tag group of men.

Without his dedication to save our nation, to make the American Dream come true, we would not have The United States of America.

As the leader of the Army, George Washington had at the end of the war, the country at his feet. He could have had any office including being King, but chose to give up his powers to be a farmer and live a private life. Nobody had ever given up so much power.

When it came time to form the new government George Washington was called upon to chair the committee that wrote the new constitution. Once the congress was elected, they all voted in George Washington to be the first president. It was pretty much unthinkable to vote for any other man.

In taking office you can be motivated by many a thing. But above all one should be motivated by the common good, not personal gain. George Washington should be the role model that every person in public office is closely familiar with. To feel strongly inspired by. And should indeed feel a connection with.

In 1789, following a proclamation issued by President George Washington, America celebrated its first Day of Thanksgiving under the new constitution.

There has been too few men who set such a strong positive public example.

Yet, during difficult times we need good examples to remind us of where the high road runs. When the going gets tough it is far too easy to choose a lower road. Looking back and asking yourself how would George Washington handled himself would be a great reminder of what the high road means.

Public office carries many temptations, many invitations which only lines the wrong kind of pockets.

Demand the most of your elected officials. Take at least the smallest possible step yourself – Start by casting your vote in November. Remind them who George Washington was!