Skip to main content

The Shame of The Nation

Magna Carta required the king to renounce certain rights, respect certain legal procedures and accept that the will of the king could be bound by law. Link

Oh how far we have fallen. Tuesday will be remembered as one of the saddest days in the legislative life of this country. Tuesday, by law, the President (a single, elected official) has the ability to indefinitely detain, incarcerate and torture anyone. Anyone. All this frothing about how it's only aliens is a cover to the real, central issue. Today, representatives of your rights allowed your right to be taken away. Watch Olbermann for the scenario where you're the one who gets picked up as an "unlawful combatant".
It is immoral, it is reprehensible, and it is a travesty to the memory of hundreds of thousands of fallen men and women who laid down their lives so this generation, the generation currently buckling to the war-mongering power grabs of a corrupt government, can claim to live in safety.

This country should be more than ashamed. This country should be more than guilt-stricken. This country should be in mourning. Mourning the passing of ideals. Mourning the passing of the American dream. Mourning the death of Freedom.
We have, I fear, confused power with greatness.
Stewart L. Udall

Indeed, we have lost the ability to evaluate our own minds, or hold thoughts that go beyond our small sphere of effect. Most Americans will not feel the impact of this law, either for good or bad. But the American people have allowed a precedent to be set. We have allowed our government to strip our freedoms without so much as a march or a thought of opposition. We yawned in the face of a President granting himself almost dictatorial powers. Those who stood up for the ideals were labeled as lovers of terrorism or, worse and most ironically, traitors.
I say this with all sincerity. I would rather a dozen terrorists go free than one person be held in my name and be tortured by mistake.

We have one tool left to fight this despicable turn of events: we can still vote. Despite faulty machines, an overwhelming voice cannot be tampered with. We can't vote out the President, but we can vote out anyone who supported him in this bid to wipe out the basic freedoms all Americans enjoyed, up until yesterday.

Michiganders, Pete Hoekstra supports this policy. Vernon Ehlers, David Camp, Fred Upton, John Schwarz, Michael Rogers, Joseph Knollenberg, Candice Miller, and Thaddeus McCotter all support this policy. Debby Stabenow, a Democrat, supports this policy. Every one of them deserves to be voted out of office.

Countrymen, find your representative on either the House or Senate voting records. If they voted Aye, vote them out. This is not how America thinks. This is not how America acts. Have we learned nothing from the past? Are we so blind that party loyalty is all we see? If you are religious, is this how your god wants you to treat your fellow man, as a punching bag? No level of safety is worth compromising our conscience. No enemy is so dangerous that we have to wound ourselves in their pursuit. If we, as a country, believe that the ends justify the means then the "war on terror" is already lost.


Popular posts from this blog

RIP Tom Petty

Tom Petty died today, aged 66. I won't claim to be a huge Tom Petty fan, but I've bought an album or two and sang along in the car to one of those songs everyone knows. I'll  stream a lot of his catalog today to remember the songs I've heard once or hundreds of times.

I also owe Petty credit for a singular moment in my life, and one I never expected to last in my mind.

Nearly 20 years ago, I was a fresh-ish faced transplant to Ann Arbor, MI by way of my first "real job" out of college, working for a software company in Dexter. I was renting a house with some other folks who'd also been displaced as a result of a fire at my first apartment. I was the only family member East of Lansing, which made me a contact point for anyone going through Detroit Metro airport.

Which is how my uncle Dean came to spend a few hours with me one evening. At the time, my grandparents (his parents) were wintering in Texas. My grandfather had health problems most of his life and…

Google Inbox: A classic Google product

My work domain (an EDU) recently had Google Inbox enabled so I had a good chance to try it out. My personal email is relatively quiet and, I believe, doesn't provide a good Inbox experience. Work is more active and requires actual management, something I've tossed many a tool at over the years. As part of my work life, I supported the Google Apps for EDU installation here and took a pretty extensive presentation to campus about how to manage large amounts of email.

Inbox is a classic Google product: the distillation of a number of excellent ideas into a set of half-complete features built for a use case most people don't meet. We've seen this in the past in products like ChromeVox, Google's Chrome extension for accessibility. ChromeVox works great on ChromeOS devices, but completely ignores the point that most users of accessibility tech (AT) don't have or want ChromeOS devices and come to services with their AT in tow. ChromeVox also ignores decades of convent…


Evernote, for better or worse, is the best note-taking service for my needs. It works across all my devices/computers/modes. It's fairly easy to get stuff into it. Hell, they even have 2-Factor authentication. The Windows app is a little clunky and my girlfriend and I have never been able to get shared notes to work properly (conflicted note! three times in the same grocery trip!), but what service is perfect? At least they have nice socks.

Everything, in fact, is pretty good as long as you don't screw up. And screw up I did. I'm not very regular about making backups, but I do make them every month or so. Once you figure out how to create a backup, that is.

There's a helpful Export Note option (which turns into Export Notes when you select multiple notes HINT). The export process is essentially opening All Notes, selecting every note, and then choosing Export Notes. Or something like that; Evernote never tells you, you're left to figure it out on your own. The file…