Lunaya Pravda

16 November 2006

Gun-related quotes

This has probably circled the internet and email loop, but I enjoyed it, so I'm copying it here.

Lovers of peace

"If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun." -- The Dalai Lama, May 15, 2001, at the "Educating Heart Summit" in Portland, Oregon

"Unfortunately, it happens that the need to render the aggressor incapable of causing harm sometimes involves taking his life. In this case, the fatal outcome is attributable to the aggressor whose actions brought it about, even though he may not be morally responsible because of a lack of the use of reason." -- Pope John Paul II, EVANGELIUM VITAE, 1995

"It is criminal to teach a man not to defend himself when he is the constant victim of brutal attacks. It is legal and lawful to own a shotgun or a rifle. We believe in obeying the law." -- Malcolm X

"Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest." -- Mahatma Gandhi


"We can't be so fixated on our desire to preserve the rights of ordinary Americans." -- Bill Clinton, USA Today, 1993.11.3, p.2a

"A system of licensing and registration is the perfect device to deny gun ownership to the bourgeoisie." -- Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

"Gentlemen, comrades, do not be concerned about all you hear about glasnost and perestroika and democracy in the coming years. These are primarily for outward consumption. There will be no significant change within the Soviet Union, other than for cosmetic purposes. Our aim is to disarm the Americans and let them fall asleep." -- Gorbachev 1989


"Those who beat their swords into plowshares will plow for those who don't." -- Thomas Jefferson

"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed." -- Alexander Hamilton

"Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people's liberty, teeth and keystone under independence. The church, the plow, the prairie wagon and citizens' firearms are indelibly related. From the hour the pilgrims landed to the present day, events, occurrences and tendencies prove that, to ensure peace, security and happiness, the rifle and pistol are equally indispensable. Every corner of this land knows firearms, and more than 99 and 99/100 percent of them by their silence indicate that they are in safe and sane hands. The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil influence. They deserve a place of honor with all that's good. When firearms go, all goes. We need them every hour." -- George Washington

"How a politician stands on the Second Amendment tells you how he or she views you as an individual... as a trustworthy and productive citizen, or as part of an unruly crowd that needs to be lorded over, controlled, supervised, and taken care of." -- Representative Suzanna Gratia Hupp (TX)

"All our liberties are due to men who, when their conscience has compelled them, have broken the laws of the land." -- William Kingdom Clifford


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." -- Sigmund Freud

"If those states which did not have right-to-carry concealed gun provisions had adopted them in 1992, approximately 1,570 murders; 4,177 rapes; and over 60,000 aggravate assaults would have been avoided yearly." -- Professor John Lott,

"The average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary. It takes a special sort of man to understand and enjoy liberty and he is usually an outlaw in democratic societies." -- H.L. MENCKEN

"That rifle on the wall of the labourer's cottage or working class flat is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there." -- George Orwell

"I have carried a revolver; lots of us do, but they are the most innocent things in the world." -- Mark Twain


15 November 2006

Internet Gambling Nanny Swoops on First Target

27 Arrested in First Online Gambling Bust Since Bush Signed Law Banning Internet Wagering

Prosecutors brought charges Wednesday against 27 people — including a Major League Baseball scout — in connection with a billion-dollar-a-year Internet sports gambling ring, the first such case since President Bush signed a ban on Internet gambling last month.

I'm posting this only because I recently had someone tell me that this law didn't exist, and that no one was made a criminal overnight with the stroke of a pen.

As for the motives for the law itself, ALWAYS follow the money.

Kevin Ryan, a spokesman for the Queens District Attorney, said "we have initiated a $500 million asset forfeiture case," one of the largest in state history.

Labels: , ,

14 November 2006

Follow-up on the EFC

After several busy weeks, I can happily announce that I'm nearing the end of my work with the Evil Former Coworker. While it wasn't as horrific as I was dreading, it reaffirmed that she's essentially the same since we parted ways over two years ago, and I was wise to brace myself for impact, and even wiser to escape her clutches in the first place.

The files she sent me were mostly organized, with a few glaring exceptions and omissions. As my project manager was reviewing my analysis, he kept finding instances where her maps didn't match the data in the files they sent to us. None of that was surprising to me, given my knowledge of her past performance. But overall it was relatively painless, and she and I didn't interact as much as I was dreading we might.

But the highlight in all this came late last week after the PM had finished comparing our work against the maps from her group and one other firm. His comment went a little something like this: "Overall I'm not impressed with the maps from 'X Company'. They're hard to read, they chose poor colors, and they didn't even bother to put a base map on them." I merely shrugged and nodded, though that little voice inside my head was alternating between laughing its ass off and gloating. At no time did I have to point out any of these errors. Throughout the process, they presented themselves without any prodding from me.

So now I can let out a sigh of relief. I didn't have to bad-mouth her, which wouldn't reflect well on me, no matter how well-deserved it might have been. I wasn't forced to converse with her for long periods on end, and the only personal update I've been forced to endure during this time was a brief email about their family's new kitten. My work and effiency on the project have been receiving excellent reviews, and as someone who, for better or worse, still derives a significant amount of self-worth from her job, that's always appreciated. And because my work isn't travelling back to her firm, she doesn't have another opportunity to stab me (and my career) in the back.

It's a certainty I won't ever look back on this and wish I'd done it all differently with that awful woman. Taking the high road was a worthwhile journey. In addition to everything else, that knowledge gives me much peace.

And I'm happy to say chewing my own arm off wasn't necessary; besides, that would have made typing this a little too difficult.

Labels: ,

01 November 2006

New addition to the Blogroll

I'm happy to announce that I've added dare2bfree's Restored Spirit to the Blogroll.

Her post from yesterday - When the norm is not normal - raises some important questions.

A few months ago, I had a long conversation w/ my husband about what I felt was the signs of another “civil war” which would be more aptly described as the next Revolution. We both thought that the potential was there, even if the majority (if any at all) of it wouldn’t be fought with guns and other weapons like the one that first formed our country. However, I’m beginning to rethink that. With the moronic decision to confiscate guns in New Orleans during Katrina, I can see that happening in other cities or across the U.S. easily. That is a line in the sand for many people. What will happen then? What will happen when the general gun owning public are faced with the order to turn in their weapon, their means of helping to protect their family?

I don't see signs of a coming revolution or civil war. What I see are signs of a coming collapse. Sure, the confiscation of weapons is a line in the sand for many, many folks. But not enough. Not enough by a long shot. I've long-since given up any hope that Americans would rise up and overthrow tyranny. And the walls that'll keep us from victory are sliding quietly into place; when they come to take our guns, it'll be far too late.

Maybe I'm jaded from city life, but what I see are millions overwhelmed with apathy and intellectual laziness. Not only are they apathetic and lazy, they're PROUD of it. In the city, it's not uncommon to hear folks boast of being completely unaware of politics on any level, or to announce that they always vote for the best-looking candidates (at least they get points for being aware of some kind of election). They brag to others about how much money they were able to get from the government - the question of whether to accept government funds has long since been shoved aside. It's not "whether to take", it's "how much to take," and the answer is "ALL that you can." This shallowness and stupidity and willful blindness to the world around them makes me doubt our ability to rise up as one. If a person can't even be self-sufficient when things are relatively calm and good, what chance does he stand at self-sufficiency and fighting back when the storm breaks?

So long as they've got a beer in one hand, and the TV remote in the other, everything beyond the living room walls is insignificant. And you can bet that if the lazy won't rise up to save their own asses, when their neighbors lose their guns to the thugs at the door, you can bet these repugnant folks won't rise up to save their neighbors, either. It would take a complete collapse to get their attention, and even then, the goal will be survival, not retaliation and certainly not victory.

While an amputee might be able to feel an itch or ache in a lost limb, most Americans have long since stopped noticing any aches in their lost freedom. Our freedom was amputated so long ago that most have forgotten there was ever any freedom to begin with, and the stump that remains is weak from disuse.

I really would like to have more faith in my fellow Americans. I would like to think there are more folks like the ones at The Claire Files. But sadly, I think we're in the minority - and a small minority it is. When the shitstorm comes, we won't be fighting a revolution. We'll be fighting to keep our lazy, apathetic neighbors from swamping us with the needs they were too stupid to avoid.


"Hacking Democracy"

Renton foe of computerized voting is featured in HBO documentary

On Thursday at 9 p.m., HBO will air "Hacking Democracy," a 90-minute documentary that chronicles Harris' quest to expose security holes in computerized voting systems, which she says could be exploited by computer hackers and, worse, never discovered because of the lack of a paper trail. Her nonprofit, Black Box Voting, monitors election integrity.

"She's like the Erin Brockovich of the voting-machine world," said Sarah Teale, an executive producer whose previous films include "Dealing Dogs" and "Bellevue: Inside Out" (about the New York City psychiatric hospital, not the city on the Eastside).

Two British filmmakers tail Harris, 55, as she digs through records in elections-office trash and confronts officials with a video camera Michael Moore-style. The film insinuates — but does not prove — voter fraud in several counties around the country.

Not that I wasn't aware of the problems with electronic voting and with Diebold systems in particular, but I'll be interested to see what the documentary covers. Definitely setting up the DVR to record this one.

Labels: ,