Friday, April 6, 2012

Don Boudreaux rant coming in 5...4...3....

Go here. 

Get your giggles in. 

Then go here and wait.  This one will be good. 

Reinventing the already invented

Go here to learn about The Department Of Energy's exciting contest for app developers!!!  The D of E wants  you to start developing a phone app to monitor energy usage !!!! !! ! !!!!


Go here to see Facebook's and OPower's already existing app that already accomplishes the same goal, and that was developed without taxpayer money.  Unfortunately, it does nothing to keep D of E lifers busy. 

The government uses force and the threat of violence to take money away from you to pay for this redundant crap.  (Unless you are part of the .0001% who voluntarily contribute more than the enforcers demand.)  Unbelievable. 

Coming soon:  A Department of Transportation contest to develop solid circular objects that can be fitted onto axles to expedite movement.  They want to call it "The Wheel". 

Pic of wheel came from here. 
A fresh coat of Whitening to Paul Conner for the links. 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

In defense of Trolls

From Gizmodo:

Trolling could get you 25 years in jail in Arizona

One of the Internet's basic tenets—the right to be as much of a myopic, infantile asshat as humanly possible—is currently under attack in Arizona. A sweeping update to the state's telecommunications harrasment bill could make naughty, angry words a Class 1 misdemeanor. Or worse.

They just don't get it, do they?  Can you imagine how many lawyers, judges, counselors, central planners, nanny state gremlins, and other parasites it would take to enforce this?  Never mind.  Maybe they do get it.  That's probably the point.  Jobs, jobs, jobs. 

It's a dangerous precedent, yet another bill written and supported by legislators who fundamentally don't understand the nature of the internet. And I'm not just being a, well, you know.
Arizona House Bill 2549 passed both legislative houses last Thursday and is now awaiting approval from Arizona's governor Brewer. The statute states that:

"It is unlawful for any person, with intent to terrify, intimidate, threaten, harass, annoy or offend, to use a ANY ELECTRONIC OR DIGITAL DEVICE and use any obscene, lewd or profane language or suggest any lewd or lascivious act, or threaten to inflict physical harm to the person or property of any person."
Emphasis added. If the electronic devices and means are employed to stalk a victim, the penalty bumps up to a Class 3 felony.

You do not have a right to be free from annoyances.  And just because you're offended doesn't mean you are right.  Hell, in the Starbucks where I'm sitting right now, I'm annoyed by the music, and I'm offended by the ear disc-thingys that the barista is using to deform his lobes.  Yeah, I'm equivocating between different meanings of those words, but plaintiffs and their lawyers will do the exact same thing.  Get ready for it if this thing passes. 

For those not intimately familiar with Arizona penal law, a Class 1 misdemeanor is punishable by a $2,500 fine and up to six months in jail (it's the most aggressive misdemeanor charge the state can bring). A Class 3 felony, meanwhile, carries a minimum sentence of 2.5 years for non-dangerous offenders with no prior record. And a max of 25 years in jail.

Opponents of the bill argue that the wording is overly broad and could easily be interpreted to include not just one-on-one communications but public forums like 4Chan, Reddit, and anywhere else that allows commenting. You thought the banhammer was bad? Try handcuffs.

Anyone who doesn't want to encounter Annoying Offensiveness in all its forms can stay off of Facebook, websites, Reddit, and the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's comment fields.  The only other options are 1) go along with the Central Planners, or 2) prepare to be annoyed and offended, or in the case of proprietary sites 3) turn off your comment option.  Who knows best how to handle this?  Each site owner, or the Central Planners of The Peoples' Republic of Arizona?   
I think the best option is this...."My site, my rules." 

It could also have a chilling effect on free speech by prohibiting shocking or "profane" language online. And since the bill stipulates that the offense only has to occur on Arizona soil (since a Facebook comment is definitely a geographic place, right?) that basically puts the entire Internet on notice.


The bill's supporters argue that the steps are necessary to prevent online bullying. Despite the public outcry, the bill has seen very little resistance from elected officials. However, given how well Arizona's other recent, short-lived, and generally draconian propositions—-including its racial profiling, anti-gay adoption, and anti-immigration bills—-have fared, House Bill 2549 might not be a law for long, assuming Governor Brewer even signs it.

This is nothing but grandstanding for the voters who don't consider unintended consequences.  Nobody likes being annoyed or offended.  Most people know that there's nothing that the Arizona legislature can do about it. 

In the mean time, feel free to leave your thoughts on the matter on Brewer's Facebook page. You know, while it's still legal. 

The internet can be a wide-open, freewheeling place.  Or the Central Planners can inflict their vision on it.  Pick a side. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

Good Stuff From The Internet

Once again, it's time to purge the photo files.....
Most of these are from Libertarian Reddit, Facebook, Instapundit, or emails. 

This one is for my little Aggie, who has been a Denver Broncos fan since the earliest days of the John Elway era. 
I'm from Drew, Mississippi, home of Archie Manning, father of Peyton and Eli (and Cooper). 
The Aggie is SICK of hearing about Mannings and their Super Bowl wins. 
This one is for her. 

Looks like an almost perfect correlation to me !!
You either think that this photo is funny, or you don't. 

How's that Hope'n'Change working out for you????

"Invisible Backhand", this one is for you.  I really do like having you around. 

This one isn't apropos of anything, really.  I just thought it was odd. 

I got ordained.  Let me know if you need marrying or burying. 

Gag me with a dirty diaper.