The Gentlemen Revolutionaries

Dedicated to the Preservation of the First Amendment

Name:
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Thursday, April 12, 2007

The Attack On America

When it was born this blog led an unfocused existence, mostly targeting things that pissed me off or I found ridiculous. Then life came in and this blog led no existence at all.

But now, I have a mission for this blog. It is to lead a focused, principled existence speaking aggressively about the eroding of free speech in this country.

First lets begin by reading the First Amendment:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Specifically, the First Amendment addresses Congress, and gives instructions to their behavior. However, over time the interpretation that we have given the First Amendment is that it is unacceptable for any party to restrict the speech of any other party. The common rallying call of those of us with this opinion is the famous quote by Beatrice Hall (though commonly, through Ms. Hall's own actions, it is incorrectly attributed to Voltaire).

I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

Today, Free Speech is under assault by both law makers and the public. Of course I am making reference to the Don Imus situation.

What Imus said could easily have been offensive to those basketball players... if they had the emotions of a five year old. The only reason it was considered to be offensive by them was because they were told to be offended. Plain and simple, it was a bad joke. Yet Imus is being attacked as if he is the reincarnation of Hitler. He took nothing away from anyone, yet people want to take away his lively hood (and more offensive to me they want to take away any possibility for him to help children with cancer). What he said was wrong, but it was not the end of the world. Had it not been approached in the way it was those three, apparently, offensive words would not be uttered at the top of every news broadcast.

To be clear I cannot criticize CBS's decision to suspend him, it was a valid business decision (based on invalid reasons I note below). I will criticize MSNBC for taking him off the air during his pledge drive to help children with cancer (no matter your opinion of Imus, please consider any pledge to the foundation, children should not suffer due to the problems of adults. Give at 1-877-877-6464), but will not criticize them for firing him, as, once again it may be a valid business decision (though a poor one).

The troubling part of this situation is multifaceted. The first troubling part is that people have become so sensitive that an off color remark can be characterized as being offensive. Being offended is, in a sense, a personal choice. The words I say do not offend, they are words. It is your decision to react or not that causes you to be offended. All too often being offended is expected and, in a sense, is becoming a social requirement. By this I mean if you are insulted (or your group is insulted) instead of just writing the person off that said it, you are expected to be outraged. This is not the sign of a healthy society.

More troubling though, is the reaction of some government officials, illustrated in the following statement.

I've never been asked to go on his show and I've never wanted to go on his show and I certainly don't ever intend to go on his show. I felt that way before his latest, outrageous, hateful, hurtful comments. And they just reaffirmed my belief that there really shouldn't be a place for that kind of outrageous commentary on the public airwaves. - Hillary Clinton.

Senator Clinton, this is one of the most troubling statements I have ever heard from a politician (including what we have been told by the Bush administration). You are advocating the CENSORSHIP of PUBLIC airwaves? Not only is that unconstitutional but it is immoral (I am almost considering being offended by it). Are you really that gutless Senator?

Where is the politician that stands up and says I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it? Unfortunately... I do not believe they exist.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Sorry for the lack of coverage recently- New post coming within the next 24 hours. The truth about hybrids.

Then I will fit some commentary on the middle east situation in soon, it isnt as terrible as it looks.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Dear CNN, Go jump off a bridge onto a rocky out cropping. Love, TGR

You know what I hate more than anything? Its not politicians lying to the people. Its not people accepting it. Its the media ignoring it.

It has come to light that there is a "major" secret intelligence program that the White House is running that it kept secret from the public. But not only did it keep it secret from the public but it also kept it secret from congress.

The White House is instructed to report all of these programs to the House and Senate Intelligence Committees. It did not.

This is not one of those little "president got a hummer from an intern" stories. This is more like one of those President is looking more and more fascist every day stories. Now lets take a look at the articles that are deemed more important by CNN.

1) Toyota Tundra Recall- important, especially because a family member owns a Tundra... but how many people drive one? And how many people are under this President? Oh that is what I thought.

2) Baby Mauled by family dog- Tragic, sad, but only in the paper because it is a Pit Bull and people freak out about that breed even though it is just bad owners. The only way this story is news worthy is if you change "family dog" to "Michael Jackson"; and "Mauled By" to "Mauls." Now that is a headline.

3) Soap actor commits suicide- Sucks for that dude and the six people who care.

4) Monkeys reunion tour? Not a chance!- Ok... So I am aware that the Monkeys did infact, at one time, exist. I am also aware that they sucked and they were made popular through clever marketing. I am also aware that it was our mothers that loved them. That all said. I say go screw yourself. You were hardly important then and you are far from important now.


Oh and as a side note, the above were as of 11am on 7/10, as of 1:30 pm on 7/10 it wasnt on the main page at all.

Great reporting CNN. Great reporting.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/07/09/intel.briefings/index.html

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Chances are they are watching you read this site

The NSA's illegal tapping program keeps getting worse. First it was international phone calls, then it came out that domestic phone calls were being monitored as well, and now it appears that your internet traffic is most likely being monitored as well... not just where you go but the content that you get when you are there. This means they can see the sites, see what you put up or download, see your emails, see your financial records, see any personal inmformation at all that you put on the net, no matter how secure or encrypted it is.

So we have gone from sketchy, to illegal, to downright, no way getting around it, insane. This is probably the most illegal act the Bush administration is taking and it is time for congress to act. But they wont, so it is up to us. Write your congressmen, and for god sakes vote and vote for someone that will put a stop to this garbage (though i am not endorsing one party over the other that probably means democrats).

Background info on this is here (Great read really quality info on how the government is abusing you): http://blogs.zdnet.com/ip-telephony/index.php?p=1103



Here are directions on how to find out if you are being watched or if the site you are frequenting is being watched:



With that in mind, here's the 27B Stroke 6 guide to detecting if your
traffic is being funneled into the secret room on San Francisco's Folsom
street.

If you're a Windows user, fire up an MS-DOS command prompt. Now
type
tracert followed by the domain name of the website, e-mail host, VoIP
switch, or
whatever destination you're interested in. Watch as the program
spits out your
route, line by line.

C:\> tracert nsa.gov

1 2 ms 2 ms 2 ms
12.110.110.204
[...]
7 11 ms 14 ms 10 ms
as-0-0.bbr2.SanJose1.Level3.net
[64.159.0.218]
8 13 12 19 ms
ae-23-56.car3.SanJose1.Level3.net
[4.68.123.173]
9 18 ms 16 ms 16 ms
192.205.33.17
10 88 ms 92 ms 91 ms
tbr2-p012201.sffca.ip.att.net
[12.123.13.186]
11 88 ms 90 ms 88 ms
tbr1-cl2.sl9mo.ip.att.net
[12.122.10.41]
12 89 ms 97 ms 89 ms
tbr1-cl4.wswdc.ip.att.net
[12.122.10.29]
13 89 ms 88 ms 88 ms
ar2-a3120s6.wswdc.ip.att.net
[12.123.8.65]
14 102 ms 93 ms 112 ms
12.127.209.214
15 94 ms 94 ms
93 ms 12.110.110.13
16 * * *
17 * * *
18 * *

In the above
example, my traffic is jumping from Level 3
Communications to AT&T's
network in San Francisco, presumably over the OC-48
circuit that AT&T
tapped on February 20th, 2003, according to the Klein
docs.

The
magic string you're looking for is sffca.ip.att.net. If it's
present
immediately above or below a non-att.net entry, then -- by Klein's
allegations -- your packets are being copied into room 641A, and from there,
illegally, to the NSA.



If you are behind a corporate firewall you will have to wait till you get home to do this, and if you are behind a router at home, make sure you turn off that firewall temporarily (be certain that you turn it back on!).

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Being unfocused isnt good for Revolutionaries

Lots of things dancing around in the skull right now so this post will be choppy and poorly written at best.

1) Personal responsibility keeps popping up- today a priest claimed that it was the parents fault that he raped their kid... yeah... I buy that one.

2) All this constant PC BS has got me really fired up. Last night on Long Island a business man was shot in the face on his own front lawn after investigating suspicious noises. His wife saw the man who did it and gave a description to the police. Her description was printed in the newspaper as "a man 25-35 wearing dark clothing." Notice anything missing that would really help people identify him? Some how his race was dropped from the fairly decent description that the police had received. No reason to include the race in the paper though! I mean that doesn't help narrow down the population at all! This shows how damn scared of everything everyone has become that you cant provide public safety information simply because it includes someones race... bullshit.

3) People that love the environment and forced safety by the government. I hope you realize that when your forced all of your safety features on automobile manufactures back in the 70s and 80s you screwed us on having fuel efficient cars today. Around the world there are thousands of tiny fuel efficient vehicles that would be perfect for our cities. Unfortunately the safety brigade forced all car companies to do things certain ways that make cars significantly heavier and bulkier. The SUV craze grew out of this because it was easier to design a truck that fit the requirements than a station wagon.

So now Japan and Europe want to import their little two seat wonders that get 50 mpg without the need for a costly and wasteful electric but we cant have them because you ruined it for everyone.

I know it is hard to believe, but honestly, if you let the free market go it will take care of these things. Do you think unsafe cars would have sold well? No, and if they did, it is your problem if you bought one without doing the appropriate research. Its your responsibility to be aware of the products you buy. Personal responsibility... (look at that, see how I wrapped it up nicely and tied everything together?)

Monday, June 26, 2006

The hypocrisy of the current republican view of the world is hilarious. Its great, I love it. Seriously, I find it amazingly entertaining.

Bush today stated that the US will leave when the Iraqis stand up. Makes sense when you first start to think about it, but lets compare it to something else... another issue that rises up every few years- welfare. The Republican view of welfare is that people cannot take personal responsibility until the government gets out of the way. How is this any different? By their logic we need to leave Iraq FIRST then people will begin to take personal responsibility.

Now this all came out because General Casey stated that a troop scale down was possible in the coming months. Bush knew this to be the case but the White House was sitting on it until the mid-late summer so that they could use it going into the fall election cycle. Casey, a career military man, released the plan when it became advisable for the military to do so and the Democrats have jumped all over it. Long story short (too late) General releases troop reduction plan, similar to congressional Democrats plan, Bush tries to recover and digs a deeper hole.

So here is my plan for what Bush should do to try and secure some votes for his fellow Republicans in the fall: Admit it. That's right, admit it. Admit that it is time to bring troops home and say that the Generals have been told that as soon as they can safely bring troops home they should. You don't even have to admit that you were wrong to start, you just have to admit that it is time to bring them home. It won't be bringing troops home that gets you votes, though that will get you some, it will be the fact that you are speaking straight to voters that gets you more.

I want a parade

So the gay pride parades were this weekend. I have decided that I, as a Straight Irish American Male, need a parade too! Wait... whats that? Every March you say?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Oh you guys mean Shenanigans?

Wow... just wow. I know I get fired up pretty easily, and by pretty easily I mean easier than most, and by easier than most I mean I should probably live on a deserted island by myself (and then the fucking crabs would be the target of my aggression).

About 10 days ago Congress voted itself a 3300 dollar pay raise, bringing their salary to about 170,000 dollars a year. Now I can hear some of you hollering saying "they didn't vote themselves a pay raise!" and technically you are correct. The did however, vote to not not give themselves a pay raise. That's right, Congress voted on a double negative.

I had very mixed feelings about this non-vote vote. I mostly believe that many people in Congress could be at the top of their fields elsewhere and making more, so therefore they should be paid well. I also somewhat believe that when we are this far in a deficit they should cut back everywhere they can, including their own salaries. Essentially I was indifferent.. until this afternoon. This afternoon the Congressional Republicans defeated a bill that would have raised the minimum wage by $2.10... it would have been the first raise for the minimum wage since 1997. (FYI that raise would bring the standard of living for a family of three TO the poverty line...)

Some facts:
- Adjusted for inflation, the minimum wage is the lowest it has been since 1955
- the claim that a higher minimum wage leads to lower jobs is false; states with higher minimum wages experienced better job growth than states paying only the federal minimum wage.
- 140, 120, 45, 0- The respective percentage increase in price of gas, heating oil, health care, and minimum wage since 1997.

Now some of you are probably wondering as to how I, as a libertarian, can support a minimum wage. Well I wouldn't if other government policies weren't so fatally flawed to make it necessary. If market pressures acted alone it wouldn't be necessary, but because the government has created the welfare state it has artificially driven the market value of low level employment down (if there was no welfare, people making 5.15 an hour would starve to death, you would have no workers and businesses would have to make workers wages rise in order to have a workforce at all).

Shenanigans on you Congress... and not the fun kind of Shenanigans but the kind where we get to hit you with a broom.