Telecom Front Groups & Astroturf
Nothing will dispel enthusiasm like a small admission fee.
Nothing will dispel enthusiasm like a small admission fee.
Groebe's Law: The more complex the problem, the sooner the deadline.
If abortion were the issue, laws would drastically curtail mercury emissions from coal plants, because mercury is known to cause miscarriages, still births and birth defects. The only thing missing from Bush Administration policy permitting mercury emissions is choice -- the mother gets no choice on environmental mercury-induced abortions.Original post
The FCC is the enforcer arm for the American Taliban....
FCC Levies Record Indecency Fine on CBS Show
'Without a Trace' Episode Draws $3.6 Million Penalty For Network and Affiliates
By AMY SCHATZ
March 16, 2006; Page B13
WASHINGTON -- Federal regulators proposed a record $3.6 million fine against a single TV show, penalizing CBS and its affiliates for an episode of "Without a Trace" that suggested a teenage sexual orgy, in the first batch of indecency fines proposed in more than a year.
In total, the Federal Communications Commission addressed about 60 outstanding complaints against television broadcasts, finding violations against 11 shows. Of those, seven received fines.
Overall, the FCC's action didn't provide a broad sweeping vision for broadcasters about what is appropriate for television despite suggestions from new Chairman Kevin Martin that such guidance was forthcoming. Nor were the fines as harsh as some broadcasters had feared, given Mr. Martin's previous comments about fining stations every time a dirty word was spoken, instead of once an episode.
Notably, the FCC backed away from an effort to impose higher fines by holding all network affiliates responsible for a broadcast, instead of just the stations that had been flagged by a viewer in a complaint.
Overall, the complaints affirmed the FCC's stance that common four-letter expletives aren't suitable for broadcast and would draw fines, except in "rare cases" that such language was "demonstrably essential to the nature of an artistic or educational work," such as the war film "Saving Private Ryan," which the FCC had previously found was permissible to broadcast.
FCC officials said yesterday's fines against the seven shows were designed to provide broadcasters guidelines on acceptable use of dirty words and sexual innuendo, but many of the offenses deemed to violate FCC guidelines were somewhat routine. For example, the FCC assessed a $27,500 fine for a "Pool Party" episode of the WB Television Network's "The Surreal Life 2" in 2004, which the FCC said went over the line by featuring 20 nude female friends of porn actor Ron Jeremy. Although the network used pixilation to obscure the women's bodies, the FCC ruled it was "unmistakable" that partygoers were exposing themselves and "participating in sexual activities."
CBS's "Without a Trace" drew the $3.6 million fine against 111 stations for an episode that showed no nudity, but featured scenes suggesting a teen orgy. The FCC also rejected an appeal by CBS Corp. and upheld a $550,000 fine for Janet Jackson's breast-flashing Super Bowl halftime show two years ago, finding that the network didn't do enough to protect viewers from the flash of skin.
In a statement, CBS said it disagrees with the FCC about its fines on the Super Bowl broadcast and "Without a Trace" and suggested it would take the FCC to court over the matter, noting the network would "pursue all remedies necessary to affirm our legal rights."
In total, the FCC proposed fines of about $4 million, including the $3.6 million "Without a Trace" fine but not including the Super Bowl fine, which had been previously levied. A further four shows were found to be indecent, but didn't have fines levied against them. Complaints against dozens of shows were rejected, including one about an episode of Oprah Winfrey's talk show that featured graphic language about teen sex.
Broadly, the FCC also stepped back from its effort to impose indecency fines against any station that broadcast a show found to be lewd. In several cases it fined only network affiliates that actually had a complaint lodged against them. That's in contrast to the FCC's $1.2 million fine two years ago against Fox Television and affiliates that broadcast an episode of "Married by America," even though the complaint didn't list those affiliates.
Democratic FCC commissioner Jonathan Adelstein said it was "patently arbitrary to hold some stations but not others accountable for the same broadcast."
A new theory by Vladimir Shaidurov postulates that we may have been atrributing the warming of the Earth to the wrong greenhouse gas. Rather than carbon dioxide, Shaidurov presents evidence that past temperature variations can be linked to water vapor concentrations in the far upper reaches of our atmosphere.
Shaidurov's paper "Atmospheric hypotheses of Earth's global warming" is under consideration for publication in the journal "Science First Hand," Published by Russian Academy of Sciences (Editor-in-Chief, Acad. Dobretsov, Vice-President Russian Academy of Sciences, President of Siberian Branch RAS). A preprint is available online and was published originally as University of Leicester Technical Report No. Ma-05-15.
He believes the initiating event of the current global warming behavior is not the accumlation of Carbon Dioxide from Human activities, but was set in motion by the air-burst explosion of the Tungus on June 30th, 1908. This force of this explosion is now estimated to have had a force equal to fifteen million tons of TNT. The force of this explosion forced water vapor into the upper atmosphere where a stable layer of water vapor and ice crystals formed. This layer acts in the classic greenhouse fashion reflecting infrared energy back to the surface of the earth gradually raising the earth’s temperature.
From the Leicester press release: As such, Shaidurov has concluded that only an enormous natural phenomenon, such as an asteroid or comet impact or airburst, could seriously disturb atmospheric water levels, destroying persistent so-called 'silver', or noctilucent, clouds composed of ice crystals in the high altitude mesosphere (50 to 85km). The Tunguska Event was just such an event, and coincides with the period of time during which global temperatures appear to have been rising the most steadily - the twentieth century. There are many hypothetical mechanisms of how this mesosphere catastrophe might have occurred, and future research is needed to provide a definitive answer.Eurekalert.org has the text of the press release from University of Leicester.
Your mother knows how to push your buttons because she installed them all.
On a recent shopping trip to Sam’s Club I discovered Aussie Bites. These are small cakes (mini-muffin size actually) made with whole wheat flour, coconut, sunflower kernels, dried cranberries and raisins. The whole family liked them and She Who Must Be Obeyed remembered she had seen a recipe for something similar called Anzac Biscuits. Using the Anzac recipe and the ingredient list from the Aussie Bites I have worked up a recipe that is reported to be better that the original Aussie Bites.
Here ya go:
Ingredients:2 cups Regular or Toasted Oats
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix first six ingredients in a bowl.
3. Melt honey and butter together in microwave.
4. Mix baking soda with hot water and add to butter mixture.
5. Pour butter mixture into dry ingredients and mix well.
6. Place tablespoons of mixture into non-stick mini-muffin cupcake pans (greasing pans not required) and flatten mixture slightly. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees or until golden. Cool on wire racks. Makes around 30 biscuits.
Rule of Acquisition #101: Never do something you can make someone do for you.
Tyan has created a monster supercomputer that harnesses all that power into a box that fits under your desk. Aimed at researchers and scientists, the Typhoon Personal Super Computer (PSC) is available with either Opteron or Pentium processors inside, and consists of four dual-socket blades in a box equipped with cooling fans that are so quiet you could actually live with it in the same room. Each one of its four blades is hooked up to a SATA drive, and all of those are linked together via gigabit Ethernet. The Opteron handles 64GB of memory, while the Pentium settles for “just” 32GB.
With 16 cores at full speed, imagine how well it could play Quake. Sure, it's for scientists today, but so were PCs not long ago—this just might be the beginning of a new category of personal computers, the PSC.
Dr. Lawrence Britt has examined the fascist regimes of Hitler (Germany), Mussolini (Italy), Franco (Spain), Suharto (Indonesia) and several Latin American regimes. Britt found 14-defining characteristics common to each:
1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism - Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.
2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights - Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.
3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause - The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.
4. Supremacy of the Military - Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.
5. Rampant Sexism - The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.
6. Controlled Mass Media - Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.
7. Obsession with National Security - Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.
8. Religion and Government are Intertwined - Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions.
9. Corporate Power is Protected - The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.
10. Labor Power is Suppressed - Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.
11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts - Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.
12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment - Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.
13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption - Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.
14. Fraudulent Elections - Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.
Any of this sound familiar?
...I'd even be willing to entertain the notion of a black hole passing over the area or some cosmic anomaly but it's not really black hole season either...Fox Mulder
The debate over whether Network Neutrality is good-thing has reached the mainstream media. Here’s a collection of links for further reading:
Linux Journal: Saving the Net: How to Keep the Carriers from Flushing the Net Down the Tubes by Doc Searls
ZDNet: OpenSource: Will Open Spectrum be Allowed
Business 2.0: The Net Neutrality Debate
dailywireless.org: Net Neutrality Testimony
Larry Lessig: Testimony to Senate (PDF file)
Technology Liberation Front: Geeky Conspiracy Theories by Tim Lee
Freedom2Connect SMART Newsletter #98 by David S. Isenberg
Deep Space Nine (Star Trek)
Nebuchadnezzar (The Matrix)
Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)
Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica)
Babylon 5 (Babylon 5)
Bebop (Cowboy Bebop)
FBI's X-Files Division (The X-Files)
Enterprise D (Star Trek)
Andromeda Ascendant (Andromeda)
Senator Wyden describes his 'net neutrality' bill- and we have the bill here by ZDNet's Russell Shaw -- Just got off a conference call with U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon).Earlier today, Senator Wyden introduced the Internet Non-Discrimination Act of 2006 - popularly called the Net Neutrality Act.We have all 15 pages of this act posted in a Gallery. Here's the link to scans of the bill.