Monday, October 29, 2012

Woman arrested for speaking too long at city council meeting | The Sideshow - Yahoo! News

Not the first time a tax payer and citizen has been arrested at a city council meeting:Woman arrested for speaking too long at city council meeting. Remember Quartzite, Arizona for starters? This woman is in her sixties. Nice work coppers.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Sheila Quirke: 'Make Your Own Damn Dinner, Mitt'

Quirke says it all. "Binders full of women" indeed. In Mitthead's mind, those binders are probably full of pictures like these:

Sheila Quirke: Make Your Own Damn Dinner, Mitt: Last night, in response to a young woman's question about lessening the wage gap between men and women in the workplace (it felt like a flashback to 1984, honestly), Mitt started talking about things like binders and moms utilizing flex-time to go home early and fix dinner.

The thinly-veiled misogyny in Mitt's responses has me reeling. Why is it that women, moms specifically, need to go home and make dinner? Where are the men? Do men not eat? Do men not cook? Do men go hungry, waiting for their working women to tend to their most basic of human needs?
In choosing those words and sharing anecdotal evidence of his progressive work place strategies, he both dates and outs himself. He makes himself the helper of women, and it is through his beneficence that moms can cook and tend to their families. Thank you, Mitt. Truly, thank you. 

Police Want The Power To Walk Through YOUR Neighborhood With Drug Sniffing Dogs | XRepublic

Police Want The Power To Walk Through YOUR Neighborhood With Drug Sniffing Dogs | XRepublic

Monday, October 15, 2012

President Obama Signs “Anti-Protest” Bill H.R. 347

The new law, which passed the House with a vote of 399-3, extends the original law by adding more protected areas within Washington D.C, and removing the word “willfully,” from the paragraph stating that protesters can be prosecuted if they enter the area “willfully and knowingly.”

Representative Justin Amash, R-Michigan, explains this change by saying:

“ The bill expands current law to make it a crime to enter or remain in an area where an official is visiting even if the person does not know it’s illegal to be in that area and has no reason to suspect its illegal.”

Occupy DC protesters are calling the modifications an infringement on their First Amendment rights, because of the areas of D.C. that have been added to the protected areas portion of the act.
President Obama Signs “Anti-Protest” Bill H.R. 347

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Anti-DEA rants on Facebook spark criminal prosecution | Politics and Law - CNET News

Anti-DEA rants on Facebook spark criminal prosecution | Politics and Law - CNET News: Anti-government rants on Facebook can land you in a heap of trouble.

A federal judge has given the green light to the U.S. Justice Department's prosecution of an Indiana man who allegedly posted incendiary remarks about police.

On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge William Lawrence in Indiana rejected requests by the defendant, Matthew Michael, to throw out the charges on the grounds that no specific Drug Enforcement Administration agent or other individual had actually been named in the posts.

Lawrence ruled that -- assuming the Facebook postings were illegal threats, which has yet to be proved -- they "were directed at natural persons, namely DEA agents, law enforcement officers, and government personnel."

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Piercy expects deadlock on downtown exclusion zone issue

Update on the "exclusion law" here in Eugene, Oregon (see post below.) Piercy expects deadlock on downtown exclusion zone issue

GUEST VIEWPOINT: Eugene’s public safety zone unfairly enforced

I've posted before about my town's "exclusion law" which seems blatantly illegal, yet, it continues to be enforced. It has the approval of the city council, the mayor, and many, many citizens. Here's an excellent article by Jean Stacy, a local activist with Occupy Eugene, on the types of violations people are being cited for. GUEST VIEWPOINT: Eugene’s public safety zone unfairly enforced.

As the title of the article reads, it's euphemistically called "public safety zone" law but it is a law that targets those who are poor, or simply don't fit in with the random standards of the moment. Beyond that however is the real reason behind this law: control through fear. Fear of so-called "good citizens" who think they're immune from this kind of treatment because they pay taxes, they have jobs, they have no premeditated intent to break laws or cause trouble. Fear of those tax paying citizens of the homeless, the poor, society's misfits and trouble makers. Playing to those fears by appeasing them, local authorities passes "exclusion laws" to comfort the rest of us. And so, subtly those tax paying, honest citizens are also controlled.

The rest are controlled but through more blatant methods. Fear of being "excluded" from the downtown area -- which includes the public library -- fined, arrested, the rest of the hoi polloi are hassled. True, many of them hassle the rest of us. Pan handling, in your face groups of teens, etc. but that's life int he big city. Which, as much as Eugene pretends it is, it is not. Uncomfortable encounters with others does not give cause to enact unconstitutional laws.

Among the "crimes" people have been busted for, according to the article, is the felony charge of pot smoking. It would be a misdemeanor except for the following:
Thirty-five percent of the exclusion notices’ most egregious charges are for marijuana — not “serious crimes,” as stated by the police chief.

Ninety percent of those marijuana charges are bumped from violations to felonies by charging that they occurred within 1,000 feet of a tiny school hidden in the Overpark area — a school that few would know exists, because it is not marked or posted as a school.
Stacy writes of many other examples of Draconian actions by authorities; ridiculous and petty actions, including "theft of services" and a one armed man in a wheelchair being cited for breaking the leash law. (Leash was tied to wheelchair, but, since it wasn't in his hand -- his one hand -- he was in violation.)

As Stacy points out, how long will it be before the city of Eugene gets its totalitarian collective ass sued? It needs to happen, since local opposition to the law has been in the minority and the law continues to exist.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Dystopian Novel: The Owl Keeper

I recently read this young adult novel by Christine Brodien-Jones. I loved it. It's a dystopian  novel and for that, bleak of course. And, as with the Hunger Games and similar novels, I wonder at the intention of the authors. Just what are they trying to tell us? I suspect, or at least, like to think it is so, that they are well aware of the state of things. Or, being the true paranoid conspiracy tumbling down the rabbit hole observer that I am, one could take the opposing view and suggest these writers are twisting the reality of our police state into a comforting, fantasy laden romp. I doubt that though; while it could be said it's true of the aftermath of the success of books -- again, Hunger Games -- with all the commercialism and weakening of the message in favor of the fad of bow hunting, I don't think that was the original intent. And then there's the fact that the age of readers these books are written for is often an age where the world is dystopian, just by definition. But I'm over thinking all of this. It's a good book, I enjoyed it, and recommend it for young readers and adults alike.

IntelHub:'Police State 2012: Drug Squad Confiscates 1624 Daisies in Suburban Garden Raid'

Police State 2012: Drug Squad Confiscates 1624 Daisies in Suburban Garden Raid :

Video of TSA drill at Sky Harbor goes viral - FOX 10 News - Phoenix, AZ | KSAZ-TV

Video of TSA drill at Sky Harbor goes viral - FOX 10 News - Phoenix, AZ | KSAZ-TV (via Intelhub)

Police Cameras Outside Your Door

Police Cameras Outside Your Door