Law and Public Policy

Some poor village

Some poor village is being deprived of their local dolt. It is really not fair and said incompetent should be returned as quickly as possible. So this is really a story about the clown who bothered to file suit against Apple claiming they unlawfully bundled the iPod and the iTunes Music Store. The claim purports that because the only out of the box solution that works with iTunes Music Store is the iPod. According to the BBC the litigant said he was forced to buy an iPod if he wanted to take his music with him to listen to.

Is it possible to be too organized?

Maybe I'm getting too organized when during the first week of the year I'm getting ready to figure out what kind of chunk the Internal Revenue Service will be taking out of my account come April. Hope springs eternal that there might be a refund, but it is better to be pleasantly surprised by one than to expect it and be devistated by being told to pay up. The IRS has been busy revising the State Sales Tax deduction tables in order to make changes for errors made in the calculations for Arkansas, California and Virginia.

We the Media

This summer at Apple's World Wide Developer's Conference I took a look at a proof of Dan Gillmore's book We the Media. Tonight I started reading it. It is very good. It is wonderful that Gillmore and O'Reilly have chosen to release the book under a Creative Commons License. I'll have lots more to say about it as I read further. So far Gillmore's observation that "a shallow citizenry can be turned into a dangerous mob more easily than an informed one," is one of my favorite quotes.

Timothy, Theadore and Karla

We the people of the United States in order to form a safer and more perfect union are no longer burdened with the keeping of a murderer. Karla Tucker was the center of much attention as the first woman to be put to death in Texas since the Civil War. Much was made of her subsequent conversion to Christianity and the "goodness" in her heart.

Little was made of her choice to leave a pickax through the heart of her victim. Few likely remember the twelve citizens who were faced with making the decision about Karla's fate. No contrast has been made between those twelve and the twelve who, in choosing not to make a decision, spared the life of Terry Nichols.

The devil, as they say, is in the details. Tucker was a cold blooded murderer. Was she beyond reform? People will argue this for years. Should George W. Bush have spared her life? Should any single man be given this power or responsibility?

Every couple of years as November rolls around we are inundated with cries about candidates who are "soft on crime." To date no candidate has run based on their having administered the lethal drug mixture to a condemned prisoner. Plenty have been run about an opponent's being soft and releasing prisoners early.

Dead Men Walking was an excellent movie. Anyone who unequivocally says we need the death penalty should see it. The ending was too much for me. I haven't seen it and I won't.

April 19, 1995

Few events of this decade will touch us like what happened this day.


The latest Halliburton discovery

60 Minutes tonight ran a piece (it was a repeat but new to me) on Halliburton explaining how the company used the pensions of New York City fire fighters to fund terrorist regimes. In order to comply with US law the company must have a "completely independent" subsidiary in another country. In Halliburton's case the "independent" subsidiary is a mail forwarding service in the Cayman Islands. They have a grand total of zero employees in their "independent" subsidiary's office. So our own country's very own Vice President Dick Cheney is responsible for helping to support the very same sponsors of terrorism who the Bush administration claims to be at war with.

Perhaps this explains better why, in the middle of prosecuting an important war on terror, the Bush administration was so desperate to mislead our country into a war against a different company that had nothing to do with the terrorists attacks against our country. It has become clear that the current administration could not possibly be reelected without the fear mongering to keep Americans living in terror.


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