moragmacpherson: (Evil)
Dear Congress:

Thanks to the bizarrely tireless efforts of  Lamar Smith (R-Texas) and a majority of the House Judiciary, you're going to vote on SOPA once you're back in session. While you enjoy your recess, your constituency would really appreciate it if you took a little time to reread Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8 of the United States Constitution and meditate on its meaning and intent.  I'll save you the bother of looking it up:

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.
This clause addresses both patents and copyright. And yet, the duration and powers of these protections for inventors and scientists vs. authors and other media creators has become vastly different.  SOPA will only exacerbate that gap.

Read more... )
moragmacpherson: (Default)
It's a fine tradition -- first written into English Common Law in the Magna Carta, then enshrined into the Constitution of the United States in the Fourth Amendment.

The current Defense Spending Bill (which passed 93-7) has a passage which suspends the right of EVERYONE, citizens of the United States included, regardless of location -- so yes, even in this country -- until the "cessation of hostility."  Which in the case of The War On Terror* would be... well, it approaches infinity, so I'll just go with, this is permanent.  Two different senators, Sen. Udall (R-CO) and Sen. Feinstein (D-CA) proposed amendments which would remove this passage from the Defense Spending bill.  That's right: senators from both parties tried to get rid of this.  Sadly, their cohorts didn't feel the same way.  Here, from, are the roll call sheets from both the Udall and Feinstein Amendments, senators listed by state. 

If you live in a state where the senators voted "nay," may I strongly encourage you to contact your senator and tell them to pull their heads out of their asses.  While this provision will no doubt eventually be smashed to bits when it reaches the courts (y'know, given that habeas corpus is a constitutional right for all citizens), I'd rather not have my tax dollars be spent on its defense.  

ETA: There is petition to the White House encouraging the President to veto the bill (and to do so for more appropriate reasons than previously provided by the press secretary).  It requires registration, but if you'd like to sign (I did), you can find the petition here:  Veto S. 1867

Roll calls below the cuts )


moragmacpherson: (Default)

January 2016



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