2002
06.17

Regional: Austin

  • I found a very interesting website today for the Austin Monorail Project.

    While the Simpson’s “Springfield Monorail” episode was funny, I actually think the monorail may be perfect for Austin, especially in that it would require minimal demolition of surface buildings and not require the loss of valuable surface real estate. Also, I think a monorail would be more aestetically pleasing than standard light rail.

  • 2002
    06.17

    Law

    • AP/Yahoo: Supreme Court Rules on Bus Searches – I had been following this case as it weaved its way through lower appellate levels and am bothered by the actions of the court in this case, and in similiar cases regarding automobile searches.

      The reality is that cops through their uniform, gun, and their image have a coercive presence. Many people, whether they are on a bus, train, or driving a car do not realize that if a cop is asking for permission to search your stuff, then he/she can’t search your stuff without your consent.

      I wish the Supreme court would have ruled otherwise, as I think it would be a strong reaffirmation of Miranda but this doesn’t change the fact that WE have the right to tell cops know when they ask to search our person and belongings if the cops don’t have probable cause.

    • NY Times: Solicitors Do Not Need Prior Permission, Court Rules
    2002
    06.17

    2002
    06.14

    ok, I lied. I do have one quasi-political link to share from MSNBC:

    S.C. troopers set to block plutonium

    This is so incredible. State’s rights have gotten a bad rap (deservedly so to some extent, since so many Southern states have misused their sovreignty to oppress individual rights of African Americans in the past) but past abuses don’t justify the current encroachment on state’s sovereignty by the Federal government. I’m glad to see a Governor standing up for their state’s laws, constitution and welfare against an abusive federal government, when it is a truly just cause and not bigotry or stupidity.

    2002
    06.11

    Quote of the Week

    2002
    06.10

    Life goes on.

    2002
    06.10

    Music:

      Thanks to Kimberly, I’ve discovered Fleming & John. It is some of the best and funnest pop music (in the best sense of the word) that I’ve heard in some time. I highly recommend it.

      BTW, their last and best CD is available for only $2 (!) at www.usedcduniverse.com.

    2002
    06.10

    Politics still sucks. What can I say really? Nothing really changes. It’s all a big money game.

    Maybe I’m sickened by the screw the poor bill that looks like will pass in congress (a.k.a. the bankruptcy “reform” bill.”) or maybe it is the total lack of disregard of human rights (both here and abroad) by our government. In either event, it all seems very futile to me.

    What really bothers me though is I have to pay for this garbage. It’s my tax dollars that are being used to oppress the poor, to pay for bombs to drop on civilians, to pay for government goons to harrass foreigners, to exploit the 3rd world, to kill the innocent who are undoubtably in line on death row, etc. Worst of all, I have to pay for Neo-McCarthyites like Ashcroft to rape our democracy.

    I feel like I’m being beaten with a stick and then billed for the privilige. And there’s nothing I can do about it.

    This all reminds me of a conversation I had with my friend Jason awhile back. He said that when Jesus was confronted with the issue of paying taxes to an evil corrupt government, he said “Render unto Ceasar what is Ceasar’s and to God what is God.” He then explained that Jesus wasn’t saying it was a moral obligation to pay your taxes, but rather who cares about dirty money anyway. Do what the system wants with what is theirs, but don’t give up what is truly God’s.

    In a way that makes sense. I could refuse to pay taxes, but they would take the $ anyway. The only way to avoid this is to voluntarily live in extreme poverty. But what they can’t take from me is hope. Defiant hope.

    They might say that the people of Afghanistan and Iraq are expendable, but I can still love them.

    They might say “screw the poor” but I can combat their oppression through generosity.

    They can even say some people are so evil that society must murder them, but I can still love them.

    So anyway, that’s where I stand. I guess that means my temporary hiatus from political blogging continues. I frankly can’t take the angst of lamenting a dying civilization anymore. The negativity and hopelessness of it all is eating my insides up, and I hate myself for confusing hatred of evil with hatred of the people who push for evil.

    Even John Ashcroft is made in God’s image. If I can’t love him, I really can’t love anyone.