Archive for October, 2002

2002.10.20

2002.10.20

europe, now that they are unifying, is an interesting place. i wonder how long it will be before they have their own civil war (as opposed to the previous european theater world wars). of particular interest is this chart.

america has it’s own brands of hatred, though, always looking for someone to label evil. hopefully the religious bigotry will subside… (hopefully someone will notice the relations, though weak in ways, of the two links).

meanwhile i’m looking forward to our next earthquake during one of the world series games. go giants! if we do have an earthquake during the series.

Comments Off on 2002.10.20 | Catergorized: geek  san francisco

2002.10.14

2002.10.14

quick follow up to the previous entry. one of the points i was trying to make was the apparent confusion on how to treat copyright. is it property or is it not?

todd was kind enough to send me a series of links concerning copyright that may be useful to anyone interested in pursuing some of these issues:

two articles on the current supreme court case:

general and a bit more specific

the plaitiff’s site

copyright basics, right from the horse’s mouth.

been thinking about dreams and their analysis again. i think reading joseph campbell is affecting me. maybe because he’s talking about carl jung, and both times i’ve read jung’s books i had very intense dreams for months afterwards.

Comments Off on 2002.10.14 | Catergorized: rights  thoughts

2002.10.10

2002.10.10

in the growing battle over who controls copyrights (in this case corporate media) and consumer rights, it’s nice to see someone in the government actually siding with the consumer. “Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, plans today to introduce the ‘Digital Choice and Freedom Act,’ Silicon Valley’s response to a host of Hollywood-backed bills tilted in favor of copyright holders.

copyright is, indeed, extremely important for the creator. without it, making a living at any sort of art would be almost impossible unless we reverted to a system of sponsorship. right now, however, copyright extends well past the lifetime of the creator. imagine, 70 years beyond your death, you still own your copyright.

these days, however, you don’t own your copyright. the company you work for does, so they can actually maintain their copyright -more or less- indefinately. i guess it does turn out to be a sort of sponsorship. corporate sponsorship. corporations buy other corporations and acquire their copyrights. as various media conglomerates grow and consolidate, copyrights become held by fewer “owners”.

in the end, with the current trends and serious lobbying by the few remaining media empires, very few will have the ability to take advantage of existing copyright. corporations will ruthlessly prosecute those that come close to violating what they own.

it’s a relief that representative zoe lofgren is standing up to this. afterall, the constitution says it best: The Congress shall have Power To… promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries. (emphasis mine). somehow to me “limited Times” to me doesn’t sound like the lifetime of the author plus 70 years. who thought of that anyways? oh yeah, sonny bono. and “Authors and Inventors” doesn’t sound like the description of a corporation. i realize that over time the law has been molded so that corporations are a legal entity with legal rights, but a corporation is not a person no matter how you hack it.

copyright as a law was instituted to protect the owners from theft. this is admirable. i wouldn’t like my stuff being stolen, whether my boots or my few songs. however, copyright was also instituted as a form of incentive to create and invent. with the copyright you can make money, albeit for a “limited Time”. part of the reason for the limitation was to prevent a monopoly.

originally this limited time was 14 years (and could be renewed for 14 more years), as defined in the US Copyright Act of 1790. dwell on that for a while.

Comments Off on 2002.10.10 | Catergorized: rights  thoughts

2002.10.05

2002.10.05

still i am unhappy with how congress is now being pressed by the bush administration to give him authority to do as he pleases. i can understand the urge to pursue and punish terrorists. i can understand that iraq *may* be harboring terrorists. i can not understand why we cannot locate and eliminate those terrorists without going to war against the iraqi regime. saddam hussein is a bastard and certainly a threat in many ways. however, countering terrorism and toppling this particular government haven’t been shown (to me, at least; maybe someone else has read the conclusive evidence and can fill me in?) to be related.

i am not the only one concerned. recently, in an open letter to “dubya” bush, larry williams asked a few important questions that he is hoping bush will take the time to answer. for himself, but also for the american people. mr. williams is a retired marine colonel and professor at GWU in DC, so it’s not like this is the average joe on the street expressing his concern (as i am). here are the questions:

1: What is the actual threat to the United States — the purpose of war?
2: How many American lives will we expend to punish Saddam Hussein?
3: How long will public support last when hundreds, possibly thousands, of body bags start arriving home?
4: How, militarily, do you plan to fight this war?
5: How many Iraqi citizens do you plan to kill in order to bestow democracy?
6: How will you govern a defeated Iraq?
7: How does the war against Iraq contribute to winning the war against terrorism?

mr. williams expounded on the questions and points out why they should be answered. i should point out the open letter is not of condemnation, but rather of concern that we are right (politically, morally, and practically) in going the direction bush would take us.

my secret fear is that this could be an opening salvo for WWIII. no, i am not clinically paranoid.

Comments Off on 2002.10.05 | Catergorized: political  thoughts
« 2002.08.29      2002.10.10 »