Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Hurricane Homeland Security

Friday, September 2nd, 2005

I sure am glad I gave up all those civil liberties so we could have effective Homeland Security.

See also: Hurricanes, beer, & Pop-Tarts

Community Chest

Sunday, August 28th, 2005

Cha-ching! I just got a letter informing me that I won a class action suit (Christopher Boehr vs. American Express) with a check attached: Amount: $0.28

That’ll buy me a Diet Dr. Pepper at work! Thank you, lawyers, for looking out for the small guy, and enjoy the three million dollars you received for your part in this lawsuit.

Neal Stephenson interview in Reason magazine

Wednesday, February 9th, 2005

Speaking as an observer who has many friends with libertarian instincts, I would point out that terrorism is a much more formidable opponent of political liberty than government. Government acts almost as a recruiting station for libertarians. Anyone who pays taxes or has to fill out government paperwork develops libertarian impulses almost as a knee-jerk reaction. But terrorism acts as a recruiting station for statists. So it looks to me as though we are headed for a triangular system in which libertarians and statists and terrorists interact with each other in a way that I’m afraid might turn out to be quite stable.


How a ballot-receipt should *not* look

Wednesday, November 10th, 2004

This is a creative but tremendously bad example of a ballot recipt:

Wired Magazine’s back-page each month features a photoshopped image that is meant to represent a telling found object from our future. They’re often good, but this month’s — a receipt from a paper-trail-leaving voting machine — is the best so far. Wow.

Link (BoingBoing)

If you look at the picture, you’ll see the ballot shows tracking numbers where you can log onto a website to verify your ballot.

The October 2004 issue of IEEE Spectrum has a good article that explains why this cannot be done:

Voting systems must never link an individual to his or her vote, or else it would be possible for the voter to sell a vote or a politico to coerce one. In short, voting machines need to produce transactions that are auditable. Officials need to be able to recount ballots, trace problems, and eliminate errors. All the while, they must never be able to identify who created which ballot. This problem has engaged some of the brightest minds in computer science and mathematics for a few years now, with no agreement yet about how it can best be solved.

But kudos for a creative example of “what could be” (if not “what should be”).

Paul Crouched…

Tuesday, September 14th, 2004

The Los Angeles Times reported Sunday that the founder of the Trinity Broadcasting Network paid off a former male employee to hush allegations the two shared a homosexual encounter eight years ago.

The Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), which is based in Orange County, Calif., calls itself the largest Christian television network and airs shows like “The 700 Club” that condemn homosexuality.

According to the paper, Enoch Lonnie Ford, 41, threatened to publicize details of his alleged affair with Paul Crouch, 70, but legal agreements kept the accusations from being made public.

If you don’t know Paul Crouch, you have probably caught a glance of his scary wife Jan (Google image search) while flipping TV channels.

Link (PlanetOut)