Abandon All Fear

What nobody else seems to be saying…

Archive for February, 2009

[Legalities] Ignorantia Juris Non Excusat

Posted by Lex Fear on February 27, 2009

Gavin Ayling thinks the law should be written in plain English. I’d like to expand on his post. I’ve always been amazed at this legal principle that underlines society.

Since there are so many laws and regulations to follows wouldn’t many of us be ignorant until pulled up on one?

And yet how many times have we come up against authorities themselves who play upon our ignorance and ignore the laws meant to keep them in check?

It seems to me laws have been crafted as to cover every tiny possibility and remove as much discretion as possible for a judge to employ. I think an efficient and humanitarian society should look to reducing laws and regulations as much as possible – wording them so that they cover a ‘multitude of sins’ rather than every single little possibility. This would then assure people of (a) their rights and (b) their responsibilities.

For example, what is the point of having a Racial and Religious Hatred Act, a Protection from Harrassment Act, a Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act, a Criminal Justice Act, an Anti-Social Behaviour Act, a Female Genital Mutilation Act (yes, there is one), a Sexual Offenses Act, a Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act, a Violent Crime Reduction Act, plus hundreds of others I cannot be bothered to reference (but you get the picture).

All of the above acts deal with or touch on violence of some sort. Obviously we could say most reasonable people are not the violent type so many of these rules won’t apply, but this is just an example.

What this tells me is at least one of the following reasons,

  • The lawmakers are too lazy, or braindead, to check if something is already covered in exsisting law
  • The existing law was not good enough
  • The law was created for political expediency, not for genuine practical reasons
  • There is money to be made in lawmaking

Is not violence or harrassment against a black person as bad it is against a white person? A gay person or straight person? A child or adult? An immigrant or local? A man or woman?

Does this also mean that any minority not covered by this existing legislation is at risk from lawful violence?

“Your honour, I would like to point out that the man my client attacked is a narcoleptic and is therefore not protected by any existing legislation. My client was therefore acting in a lawful manner and I would request this case is thrown out.”

Would it not be a better society if lawmakers actually tried to include the widest possible interpretation when crafting legislation? Then, leave it for the judges to interpret and decide if a law had actually been broken or not.

What’s wrong with, for example, a law that states “You shall not inflict violence upon another person”. It would then be for a judge and jury to distinguish between a bloody beheading or a playful punch and award compensation and punishments on a scale.

“To make laws that a man cannot, and will not obey, serves to bring all law into contempt.”
– Elizabeth Candy Stanton

People do not exist for laws, laws exist for people and politicians need to get it into their head that society cannot be controlled or coerced into being happy and nice to each other, but most of us are capable of telling right from wrong. No-one needs to consult various regulations and acts each day before leaving their house to ensure that they don’t commit an offence. It’s time for better laws, not more laws.

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Posted in Absolute Power, Bollotics, Doublethink, Justice & Mercy, Minitruth, Non-Compliance, Pharisees, Realpolitik, Tick-Box Culture | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

[Whodunnit] Killing In The Name Of…

Posted by Lex Fear on February 26, 2009

I have been debating an atheist called postsimian over at The Friendly Atheist but it’s getting far too long and off topic now so I’ve decided to post a response back here.

I said I’d respond if PS persuaded me of his/her arguments and after reading his/her last response there are a couple of things I do have to concede. Yep shock horror.

If you want to follow the debate from the beginning, head over and read the comments on Hermant’s post: Foxhole Atheist Jeremy Hall Tells His Story.

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Posted in Apologetics, Laymans Theology, Morals & Ethics, The Religious Wrong | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

[Cyburbia] Religion 2.0

Posted by Lex Fear on February 24, 2009

Interesting interview of James Harkin on the media obsession with Web 2.0 and failure to criticise the medium. Well worth a read of the whole article, even Neo-Darwinism gets a mention. Here’s a couple of excerpts:

Now I’m not arguing people are stupid or lazy if they do that – but there’s an electronic peer pressure online. Academic studies that have been done by people who are very sympathetic to Web 2.0 and networks, people like Clay Shirky and Duncan Watts, show that the whole decision making process tends to become a robotic routine. One person makes a decision, and everyone else falls in line.

It’s a refreshing perspective and nice to read a contrarian view, enough to make me want to buy the book.

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Posted in Quoteyness, Technology, Tick-Box Culture, Warring Memes | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[Intriguing] Blunkett’s Guidedog?

Posted by Lex Fear on February 23, 2009

That’s my first guess at what has caused his near U-turn on ID cards:

David Blunkett, who as Home Secretary led the government’s push for compulsory ID cards, will tomorrow call for the scheme to be curtailed, according to a report.

Instead he will propose that only foreigners be made to hold an ID card. UK nationals should only be required to hold a passport, Blunkett will argue.

For those not in the know, whilst Blunkett was in public office, flogging ID Cards and all manner of Orwellian devices to use on us, the British public, he received a nice directorship with Entrust, the company who created Spains ID card system and lobbied for the contract for the British one.

I’m sure there was no link between Blunketts cushty new job and his policy towards ID cards at the time.

A glance at the news show Entrust doing reasonably well profits wise during the recession, so what has caused Blunkett to shift his stance?

Worth watching this one, lack of sight has caused Blunketts nose to develop a keen sense of smell for money and influence.

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Posted in Absolute Power, Anti-Terrorists, Bad Company, Bollotics, Databases, Dorks, Doublespeak, Financial Terrorism, Minitruth, Pharisees, Predatory Systems, Profiteering, Uncircumcised Philistines, Untouchables, Wealth Creation, Xenophobia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[Profit of Doom] Blair Must Hang

Posted by Lex Fear on February 22, 2009

“In January 2008, J P Morgan Chase took him on as an advisor, plunging the bank into a crisis from which it may not recover. “Our firm will benefit greatly from his knowledge and experience”, they said. Over the next year the share price halved and profits plunged by more than 80%, much as I expected.

Now he’s helping to modernise Rwanda. Woe to that land that appoints Blair to modernise it! His normal way of expressing concern and trying to help is to send the RAF to destroy their infrastructure. I don’t know what precise form the catastrophe in Rwanda will take –could be genocide, could be a plague of frogs- but it will come. And if the Americans ever ask his advice on resolving the financial crisis he may yet succeed in ruining us all.”

From Chase Me Ladies, I’m in the cavalry

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Posted in Absolute Power, Anti-Terrorists, Bank Robbers, Bollotics, Financial Terrorism, Ha-has, Quoteyness, Untouchables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

[Web Pointing] This Is Very Cool

Posted by Lex Fear on February 21, 2009

I’ve finally managed to wrest control of abandonallfear.co.uk from Lycos to my current domain provider and am now able to keep it for the next year or so, and point it towards this blog.

What is really cool is that doing a little test on google leads me to believe that any old pages that have been indexed at abandonallfear.co.uk with a p=? number eg. “abandonallfear.co.uk/p=123” will automatically redirect to the full corresponding page on abandonallfear.org.uk.

This must mean WP keeps all blog pages indexed via page, number and long-name rather than rebuilding the index for each option you select. Interesting.

Posted in Anecdotes | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

[Economy] It’s The Interest Rates Stupid!

Posted by Lex Fear on February 20, 2009

Says it all really.

7 Reasons Why Banks Should Increase Interest Rates

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Posted in Bank Robbers, Bollotics, Financial Terrorism, Profiteering, Property Market | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[Copyleft] Obama And The Copyright Act

Posted by Lex Fear on February 20, 2009

From Wired:

In a few weeks, we’ll likely know the Obama administration’s position on whether it supports hefty monetary awards in file sharing litigation brought by the Recording Industry Association of America.

The Bush administration’s position was clear. It supported the Copyright Act‘s penalties of up to $150,000 per infringed song.

“Congress acted reasonably in crafting the current incarnation by ensuring that it serves both a compensatory and deterrent purpose. Congress established a damages range that provides compensation for copyright owners in a regime in which actual damages are hard to quantify,” the Bush administration wrote in 2007.

Now it’s President Barack Obama’s turn, and we’ll see how tight he is with Hollywood.

One thing I’ve thought about that I don’t see mentioned anywhere by bloggers and media, is a challenge to how the MAFIAA justify their 9-to-1 ratio cost of a single music track.

No, I don’t mean how constitutional or fair it is, I mean challenging it on the basis of lost profits. Surely, after winning* their lawsuit against Jammie Thomas, all lawsuits should have stopped right there. You see they didn’t just sue Jammie Thomas for the tracks that she had downloaded or owned (worth approximately $1 a piece) they sued her for all the other people who otherwise would have bought the shared track too**.

Therefore if the MAFIAA recovered all that lost profit from Jammie Thomas (and someone can’t own one downloaded file twice over), then the score is even and there are no further profit losses i.e. no further lawsuits needed!

Am I just stating the obvious that no-one has thought up yet, or am I missing something?

*I say ‘won’, but it’s been public knowledge for a while now that the original judge has dismissed the original trial as a mistrial and it will be heard again.
**I’m obviously ignoring the fact that ( a ) many filesharers will buy an album anyway and ( b ) many other fileshares would not even buy if it was not available for download – so no profit to be had in the first place.

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Posted in Bad Company, Bollotics, Buyer Beware, Copywrong, Little Hitlers, Morals & Ethics, Predatory Systems, Profiteering, Takeback, Technology, Wealth Creation | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[Response] Barack v Bliar

Posted by Lex Fear on February 20, 2009

Cecileaux responded to my previous post on Obama on his blog:

As for the many Clintonites in the new administration, the folks who in the past gave us no health reform, a regressive and pauperizing diminishment of public aid, without any real checks on corporate power, I am glad that they are ultimately not in charge. Obama appears to be unusually his own man.

An eloquent orator, he’s also aware of the dire need to lower expectations, which is my explanation for his relatively flat inaugural speech. In sum, I see Obama as a very cool and controlled individual with a few very clear goals in mind who is a virtuoso in the art of persuasion and leadership.

So I thought I’d respond further.

I eye Obama cautiously. Whilst I was overjoyed he won, and am glad he is now President, I am careful not to put too much expectation on the man – for he is human after all and therefore he will, at some point let us down – as all human beings do.

That isn’t to say he can’t achieve great things – time will tell. Hopefully he will not turn out to be a Bliar – but Bliar was greeted with much the same adulation and praise 12 years ago.

Bliar was seen as being young, idealistitc, being in touch with the people and as a positive change from the old ways.

Bliar was anti-nuclear – a member of the CND, but left his term calling for more nuclear power. Just as Bush was dead against interfering in foreign nations.

It leads me to consider that there are those who get elected and there are those who pull the strings. If Obama is genuine in his pursuit of change, and getting his agenda, then it is doubtless he will come up against these puppet masters and strong unseen opposition in the medium to long term. I expect assassination attempts – and not by white supremacists though they would make a fitting scapegoat.

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Posted in Absolute Power, Anti-Terrorists, Bollotics, Pharisees, Realpolitik, Terrorist State, Untouchables | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

[Review] The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Posted by Lex Fear on February 20, 2009

I started off commenting on the review over at Christ and Pop Culture, but it was getting long so I thought I may as well dedicate a post to it:

*Spoiler Warning*

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