There are a lot of metaphors that people use to describe what they feel is the best role for government. Personally, I favor the government as a metaphorical “ref.” And sure, sometimes the ref makes a bad call (at&t/t-mobile merger??) or the players sneak one past the ref (goldman sachs…) but the fact remains that you can’t play a serious game of sports without a referee.
“Tip the world over on its side and everything loose will land in Los Angeles.” – Frank Llyod Wright
Flying to Atlanta today from SFO. While checking in I was offered “preferred boarding” for ten dollars. Aka I could pay money to spend more time cooped up in an uncomfortable chair surrounded by a hundred sweaty people. Yeahhhh, I’ll just continue to get on at the very last possible moment. Thanks though!
Kentucky on Thursday became the latest to make the shift when Gov. Steve Beshear signed into law a measure increasing spending on rehabilitation programs and intensive drug testing. The law also reduces penalties for many drug offenses and may allow some traffickers and users of smaller amounts of drugs to avoid prison.
While the changes are part of broader belt-tightening efforts, they also reflect a growing belief among state lawmakers that prosecuting drug offenders aggressively often fails to treat their underlying addiction problems and can result in offenders cycling in and out of prisons for years—a critique long voiced by groups that advocate in favor of defendants’ rights.
“If you just throw everyone in jail, it’s terribly expensive and they get out and they are in the same boat,” said Tom Jensen, a Republican state senator in Kentucky who voted in favor of the law.
:: more at WSJ ::
On a different side of the coin, the prosecutor who went after Paris Hilton and someone named Bruno Mars for cocaine possession was busted in Vegas for buying coke all the time. Hilarity ensues.
Also, in case you missed it, a woman in was caught with 54 bags of heroin in her vagina. Whoa there.
:: Via Email (Thanks Daniella!) ::
A pair of Democrats introduced legislation in the House and Senate Tuesday to cut off funding for abstinence-only sexual education, which they said had wasted more than $1.5 billion over the last 15 years. The bill, known as the Repealing Ineffective and Incomplete Abstinence-Only Program Funding Act, would redirect $50 million spent annually on abstinence-only sexual education to “evidence-based, comprehensive sex education programs,” according to a release from Lautenberg. The release cites as evidence that abstinence education doesn’t work the relatively high teen pregnancy rate in the United States as well as the HIV infection rate among those under the age of 29.
:: Great via CBS News ::
Al Franken to push bill that would make violations of net neutrality a crime. Franken wants to amend antitrust laws to “call violations of net neutrality out for what they are: anti-competitive actions by powerful media conglomerates that represent violations of our anti-trust laws.” We’ve had enough corporate rule to last three lifetimes, and thankfully, we have Senator Al Franken to drive that point home.
:: Go Franken via Some Blog ::
A leading group of doctors in the US concerned with the ethical treatment of patients has questioned the role of military psychiatrists in Quantico, Virginia, where the suspected WikiLeaks source Bradley Manning is being subjected to harsh treatment that some call torture. The advocacy body Physicians for Human Rights has sounded the alarm over the role of psychiatrists at the brig in the marine base where Manning has been in custody since last July.
:: Free Bradley Manning via The Guardian ::
I’ve noticed that there are a number of mailing lists that won’t remove my email even if I delete myself from their lists. Once my email is out there, it’s gone. I have had some luck “updating” my email on spam lists to another email. My rationale is that if some company thinks it’s mailings are so valuable that customers would update their email address they will discard the old one. Speaking of who is watching your email:
What are we doing spending $110 billion this year supporting corrupt and unpopular regimes in Afghanistan and Pakistan that are almost identical to the governments we’re applauding the Arab people for overthrowing?
:: Via The Moustache ::
“Sir Richard Dearlove, former Intelligence Chief of MI6, credits WikiLeaks with helping spark revolutions in the Middle East, in (what was supposed to be) an off-the-record speech. ‘I would definitely draw parallels at the moment between the wave of political unrest which is sweeping through the Middle East in a very exciting and rather extraordinary fashion and also the WikiLeaks phenomenon. Really, what ties these two events together, and of course a number of other events, is the diffusion of power, away from the states and the empowerment of individuals, and small groups of individuals, by technology,’ he said.”
My favorite part of the above video is when someone handed out copies of the downing street memo before the talk. That is some classy stuff right there.
A posse of people are putting up a Wikileaks billboard in LA. Good stuff! Donate here via EpicStep
So you have a great idea, hooray! it’s time to start a business. Here are some easy mistakes to avoid:
Don’t form a partnership based on a word of mouth agreement. This becomes more true and important the more money is involved. Easy tip: If it’s not in writing, it doesn’t matter. Business plans, they work motherfuckers.
Also, you should be aware that almost all businesses fail for two reasons
1. Lack of capital.
2. Lack of business skills.
If you have a ton of capital (savings or loans) but no business skills, you’d actually be better off just burning the money. If you don’t have money but do have business skills and a viable business model you will be able to get the money together from investors. There are four critical business skills, without them you will fail and it will be miserable the whole time.
“Money doesn’t talk, it swears.” – Bob Dylan
Above is a pretty amazing video on the different ways that people around the world count money.