hsifeng: (Just You WAIT!)
Originally posted by [livejournal.com profile] electricdruid at The fiasco continues

ACTA in a Nutshell –

What is ACTA?  ACTA is the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. A new intellectual property enforcement treaty being negotiated by the United States, the European Community, Switzerland, and Japan, with Australia, the Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Mexico, Jordan, Morocco, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, and Canada recently announcing that they will join in as well.

Why should you care about ACTA? Initial reports indicate that the treaty will have a very broad scope and will involve new tools targeting “Internet distribution and information technology.”

What is the goal of ACTA? Reportedly the goal is to create new legal standards of intellectual property enforcement, as well as increased international cooperation, an example of which would be an increase in information sharing between signatory countries’ law enforcement agencies.

Essential ACTA Resources

  • Read more about ACTA here: ACTA Fact Sheet
  • Read the authentic version of the ACTA text as of 15 April 2011, as finalized by participating countries here: ACTA Finalized Text
  • Follow the history of the treaty’s formation here: ACTA history
  • Read letters from U.S. Senator Ron Wyden wherein he challenges the constitutionality of ACTA: Letter 1 | Letter 2 | Read the Administration’s Response to Wyden’s First Letter here: Response
  • Watch a short informative video on ACTA: ACTA Video
  • Watch a lulzy video on ACTA: Lulzy Video

Say NO to ACTA. It is essential to spread awareness and get the word out on ACTA.

Via Tumblr

hsifeng: (Communist Paaaarty!)
Originally posted by [livejournal.com profile] twbasketcase at Mississippi Personhood Amendment
Originally posted by [livejournal.com profile] gabrielleabelle at Mississippi Personhood Amendment
Okay, so I don't usually do this, but this is an issue near and dear to me and this is getting very little no attention in the mainstream media.

Mississippi is voting on November 8th on whether to pass Amendment 26, the "Personhood Amendment". This amendment would grant fertilized eggs and fetuses personhood status.

Putting aside the contentious issue of abortion, this would effectively outlaw birth control and criminalize women who have miscarriages. This is not a good thing.

Jackson Women's Health Organization is the only place women can get abortions in the entire state, and they are trying to launch a grassroots movement against this amendment. This doesn't just apply to Mississippi, though, as Personhood USA, the group that introduced this amendment, is trying to introduce identical amendments in all 50 states.

What's more, in Mississippi, this amendment is expected to pass. It even has Mississippi Democrats, including the Attorney General, Jim Hood, backing it.

The reason I'm posting this here is because I made a meager donation to the Jackson Women's Health Organization this morning, and I received a personal email back hours later - on a Sunday - thanking me and noting that I'm one of the first "outside" people to contribute.

So if you sometimes pass on political action because you figure that enough other people will do something to make a difference, make an exception on this one. My RSS reader is near silent on this amendment. I only found out about it through a feminist blog. The mainstream media is not reporting on it.

If there is ever a time to donate or send a letter in protest, this would be it.

What to do?

- Read up on it. Wake Up, Mississippi is the home of the grassroots effort to fight this amendment. Daily Kos also has a thorough story on it.

- If you can afford it, you can donate at the site's link.

- You can contact the Democratic National Committee to see why more of our representatives aren't speaking out against this.

- Like this Facebook page to help spread awareness.

hsifeng: (Communist Paaaarty!)
Don't like what your government is doing?

Change it.

Iceland did.

Interesting how we never hear this sort of thing in the news.

I fully expect that my cell phone and internet service will be cut once I post this.

Can't let civil unrest brew after all.

Don't worry - I am sure Big Brother has a plan and is ready to take care of us all.


Nov. 11th, 2010 10:08 am
hsifeng: (Free Speech)

I ran into this article courtesy of Ta-Nehisi Coates' blog over at the Atlantic.

Some things are just true. These are some of them.

"In an America in which the former president can boast on television that he approved the water-boarding of U.S. prisoners, it can hardly be a shock that following a lengthy investigation, no criminal charges will be filed against those who destroyed the evidence of CIA abuse of prisoners Abu Zubaydah and Abd a-Rahim al-Nashiri. We keep waiting breathlessly for someone, somewhere, to have a day of reckoning over the prisoners we tortured in the wake of 9/11, without recognizing that there is no bag man to be found and that therefore we are all the bag man.

"President Barack Obama decided long ago that he would "turn the page" on prisoner abuse and other illegality connected to the Bush administration's war on terror. What he didn't seem to understand, what he still seems not to appreciate, is that what was on that page would bleed through onto the next page and the page after that. There's no getting past torture. There is only getting comfortable with it. The U.S. flirtation with torture is not locked in the past or in the black sites or prisons at which it occurred. Now more than ever, it's feted on network television and held in reserve for the next president who persuades himself that it's not illegal after all....

"Eric Holder and Barack Obama have taken pains to tell the American people that water-boarding is illegal torture. So what? That's just their opinion. President Bush disagrees. The persistent failure to hold anyone accountable at any level for years of state-sanctioned abuse speaks louder than their words. It has taken this issue from a legal question to a matter of personal taste. What we choose to define as torture is now just another policy disagreement, like extending the Bush tax cuts or picking a caterer."

(emphasis mine)

Is there really a question if torture is wrong? While many may justify, condone or even support leaders who ‘make the hard choice’ and set aside their morality for the illusion of greater security – does anyone really think that torture is acceptable?

Or do they simply choose to ignore these acts and their consequences, hoping that history will somehow accept the argument that the ends were justified in a country founded on the concept of individual freedom and rights?

Who are these people?

They are you and me.  

hsifeng: (Beat Down)

I....can't even...

Um...just go read this.


Now everyone, repeat to yourselves: Someone's right to choose the means and method of their own physical care should not be constrained in this ridiculous, patriarchal, and morally-judgmental manner.

Take your peronal views and cram them apply them to yourself.
Oh, and before you jump on the, “But they are just children! How can they possibly make this important decision alone?!?” horse; repeat the part about them being “just children” in the context of them becoming parents.

Not such a great plan…eh?

hsifeng: (Communist Paaaarty!)
"Too much cannot be said against the men of wealth who sacrifice everything to getting wealth. There is not in the world a more ignoble character than the mere money-getting American, insensible to every duty, regardless of every principle, bent only on amassing a fortune, and putting his fortune only to the basest uses —whether these uses be to speculate in stocks and wreck railroads himself, or to allow his son to lead a life of foolish and expensive idleness and gross debauchery, or to purchase some scoundrel of high social position, foreign or native, for his daughter. Such a man is only the more dangerous if he occasionally does some deed like founding a college or endowing a church, which makes those good people who are also foolish forget his real iniquity. These men are equally careless of the working men, whom they oppress, and of the State, whose existence they imperil. There are not very many of them, but there is a very great number of men who approach more or less closely to the type, and, just in so far as they do so approach, they are curses to the country."

~ Theodore Roosevelt

I like Teddy; he manhandled the powers of the Presidential office but he hated monopolies and those who preyed on average American citizens.

See, there are circumstances in which I would vote Republican!

hsifeng: (Free Speech)

I got the following message in my in-box yesterday afternoon. In the interest of discussion I thought I would share. Now admittedly, as a historian I have often wondered how Jim Jones got his followers to drink the Kool Aid.

I am willing to bet that it had something to do with Nazi's... )


BTW - if your interested, you can read my responce which was posted back to the folks who sent me the message in the first place.

My personal Path to Hell (good intentions, and all that)... )
hsifeng: (Book Fortress)

How about this one - fresh off the presses of the Republican National Committee:

Get the whole low-down on the crazy makin' here.

Read It

Jul. 22nd, 2009 09:41 am
hsifeng: (Communist Paaaarty!)


Curious what others think, seems pretty clear to me.

hsifeng: (Just You WAIT!)

Scientology used to freak me the hell out. But now I realize, they are just after influence and money in Hollywood. Well honey, they can have it with a big side of 'Tom Cruise'.


What I am worried about are these guys.


As noted in the commentary from readers at digby’s blog ‘Hullabaloo’ – we have places for folks who are religious extremists attempting to undermine our government.


Representative-democracy, not Theocracy. Big difference.

hsifeng: (Creative)

"...watching conservatives mock liberals for being PC, is like watching the morbidly obese mock Weight Watchers for its system of points."

As someone who confronts her own 'whiteness' and the things that come with it on a regular basis, I gotta tell you that I loved this piece. Its strangely comforting to see that the view is equally cloudy on the 'other side' of the fence.

hsifeng: (Free Speech)

batocchio/digby says it better than I could...

"Honesty is the first chapter of the book of Wisdom." --Thomas Jefferson

"I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." --Thomas Jefferson

"A great empire, like a great cake, is most easily diminished at the edges." -- Benjamin Franklin

"Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both." -- Benjamin Franklin

"Because power corrupts, society's demands for moral authority and character increase as the importance of the position increases." -- John Adams

"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence." -- John Adams
hsifeng: (Free Speech)
Brought to you by the gang at SF Cacophany....

hsifeng: (Communist Paaaarty!)

40 years after the assasination of MLK, I'm watching the inauguration of the first non-white president of the United States of America.

You don't actaully *know* you are watching history very often.

Mine is on the BBC....*grin*
hsifeng: (Creative)

From one curly haired girl to another, rock on sista!
hsifeng: (Free Speech)

So, I tend to check in on the presidental polls every day at work: It's become a bit of habit. Over the past few days Obama has slipped a couple of points - his overall rating was at 7.9% at the begining of the week and now it is at 6.3%.

Now, I am not a fan of all things Obama - in fact I am planning on voting for a third party candidate in order to help insure more funding to non-Dem/Rep campaigns in the next election cycle - but the thought of a McCain/Palin presidency is creeping me out.

Vote early/vote often.

We're in for a bumpy ride, regardless...

Prop 8

Oct. 14th, 2008 08:16 am
hsifeng: (Free Speech)


Prop 8 is currently polled to pass by 5%.

*slams head against desk*

*This* is a socially liberal state?!? In what universe?

hsifeng: (Creative)

Prediction or fantasy: I'm holding on to it forfuture reference:

From ClusterStock, Oct. 1, 2008:

Now that the government has been terrified into rubber-stamping the bailout, what happens now?

In our opinion, here's the most likely scenario:

  • Hank Paulson & Co. survey the banking industry and decide who will stay and who will go. JP Morgan (JPM), Citi (C), Wells Fargo (WFC), and Bank of America (BAC) will stay. Goldman (GS) will probably stay. Morgan Stanley (MS) might stay. Everyone else in trouble could go. The government doesn't need to save all banks. It just needs to save some.
  • Within a month or two, Paulson buys $250 billion of worthless assets. He pays more than market value, but not an egregious amount more (because the public will be watching these early rounds). Over the next six months, he buys $700 billion of assets...and then he--or his successor--asks Congress for more money.
  • Confidence improves modestly, but banks continue to hoard capital and credit markets stay tight. Loans stay expensive and hard to get. This keeps pressure on the economy.
  • The credit crunch filters through to consumers: Credit cards, home equity loans, mortgages, car loans, etc., get more expensive, putting more pressure on consumers and forcing them to cut back further.
  • The economic news continues to get worse: American consumers continue to pull back, housing continues to fall (as of July, the year over year declines were still accelerating), companies begin to cut back, which leads to layoffs--which puts more pressure on consumers.
  • The global economy continues to weaken: Europe, Asia, and, eventually, emerging markets. This is already happen, and everyone else is later in the cycle than we are.
  • The stock market continues to fall, as corporate earnings come under increasing pressure and hope for an early 2009 recovery fades. Analysts are still expecting huge growth in S&P 500 earnings for next year.  These estimates will get cut by at least a third.
  • The government enacts further measures to try to stop the fall in asset prices (stocks, houses)--including an expansion of the bailout plan--but these don't work.  Governments always try to do this. They never succeed. All they do is delay the inevitable.
  • A new round of white-collar prosecutions send a new posse of corporate villains to jail. Some will be guilty. Some won't. All will be hated.
  • The government announces a new New Deal, finally investing in the country's infrastructure, in the hopes that this will stimulate the economy (which it will). Investments include broadband, green tech, wireless, physical infrastructure, et al.
  • Eventually, asset prices will bottom: Housing down 40% in real terms, the stock market down at least 50%. With luck, this will happen by early 2010, so the recovery can begin.  Warren Buffett loads the boat with stocks, but by that time, most people are too depressed (and poor) to follow him.
  • Unlike Japan, we finally force our banks to write down assets as far as they need to be written down...and then recapitalize them. This is what we should have done in the current bailout, but we'll get it right next time (we hope). 
  • We gradually begin a long-term economic recovery, one in which consumers save a greater percentage of income, thrift and saving again become admirable qualities, we gradually begins to wean itself off international oil, and the bacchanalian decades of the 1990s and 2000s become an embarrassing memory.
  • The stock market finally begins a new, long-term bull market, in which stocks once again return 10%+ per year.  Unfortunately, most Americans will be so sickened by the stock losses they've sustained since 2000 that they'll miss many years of it.
hsifeng: (Free Speech)
Somewhere in the cosmos...Shel Silverstein is being channeled by a really pissed off American Citizen. And this is what is sounds like: )

It will be interesting to see what America is like in ten years. I have my hopes and dreams all wrapped up in a velvet lined time capsule and ready to bury in my backyard...which I hope will be mine still by then. In some ways, I am looking forward to going through this rabbit hole with all of you, I think we are all going learn some very important  (and quite possibly painful) lessons. If it get's really dark, just light a candle and we can talk about it together.


hsifeng: (Default)

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