6/29/2008

caught up

Mostly. Email replied to. Laundry done, more or less. Laptop back in the living room. All pictures on the computer. Friends seen, in person, no less.

Woohoo, now this coming week hopefully I will get to actually organizing everything from traveling. Naming pictures, sending things out, cleaning up the room, and figuring out what the rest of the summer has in store. Ooh, and figuring out what Julie wants for her birthday. Not a lot of time until then.

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6/26/2008

well scratch that

I guess hope will have to wait another day. What a pathetic sellout. Naturally, Clinton and Obama couldn't go on record for the cloture vote.

I've thought of a fun challenge. Try to draft a bill that is so blatantly authoritarian and so blatantly a sell-out to corporate demands that the Democratic leadership would enforce party unity in opposition to it.

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people are pissed

(P) And it's a good thing! Nevermind what the candidate of change says. It looks like there has been such massive contempt for the outright corruption and unconstitutionality of the FISA changes from Americans of all political stripes that we might have succeeded again in delaying two very simple, very bad ideas: broad warrantless searches by a government that wouldn't even have to make its reports public, and broad legal immunity for corporations that knowingly broke the law, repeatedly, over a number of years.

There's not much more to add about Senator Obama's stance. He's wrong on the issue, he knows he's wrong on the issue, he knows we know he's wrong on the issue, and he knows we know he has purposefully altered his stance from back when Senator Dodd, former Senator Edwards, Senator Clinton, and others were competing with him for the nomination. Either his campaign staff didn't show up for work this week, they think voters are stupid, or they actually favor the unitary executive/corporate authoritarian worldview permeating this bill. None are particularly appealing options to explore from the campaign of the de facto, barring-more-election-theft next president.

So let's talk about the good that is happening. For example, Senator Dodd continues to impress on this issue, proving that a good strategy and being right can produce results. And Senator Feingold continues to prove that one's stature is strengthened, not weakened, by taking strong positions among constituents in a state that's not solidly Democratic like New York, California-or Illinois (apparently 'centrists' and 'moderates' and 'independents', not to mention leftists and libertarians, like leaders who don't sell out to corporate criminals on basic matters of rights and accountability). And Senator Reid came out (was forced?) to publicly announce he wouldn't support the bill. Even Speaker Pelosi, after ramming the bill through the House, was forced to publicly acknowledge that perhaps spending some time debating the bill (in the Senate) would be a good thing after all.

Who knows, maybe we'll get more speeches like this one from Senator Dodd from other Democrats in the future, on this issue or something else. Click on the link, it's worth listening to. Perhaps the most exciting and refreshing speech since Edwards' talk at the winter DNC meeting last year (warning: it's a tad longer than that speech).

Of course, Senator Obama, it is never too late to change your stance to the right one. Abandon the language of fear and deception, the very rejection of which you are basing your campaign on. Americans know national security is important. We also know this bill has nothing to do with national security. Give us the benefit of the doubt; trust us to handle the Constitution the way you trusted us regarding your pastor. You just might be pleasantly surprised.

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6/23/2008

who supports criminals?

Pop quiz time. Who said this about legislation designed to prevent powerful companies from being held accountable for criminal activities and to allow even further spying on Americans by unaccountable government leaders?

"It is not all that I would want," [____] said. "But given the legitimate threats that we face, providing effective intelligence collection tools with appropriate safeguards is too important to delay."

A) President Bush
B) Vice President Cheney
C) Senate Minority Leader McConnell
D) Presumptive Republican nominee McCain
E) Presumptive Democratic nominee Obama

If you guessed Obama, you're right.

Wow, this is just unbelievable. Or at least, unbelievable if you think Obama is as progressive as he lets people believe he is. When push comes to shove, he seems quite willing to support corporations, even when they commit felonies. Some guy who smokes a joint will serve more jail time than these criminals! He seems quite willing to do what the Republican leadership demands, no matter how much the very people whose votes he's pursuing despise the policies of the GOP. He seems quite willing to use the same baseless scare tactics and the same hollow deceptions about 'safeguards' as the GOP leaders themselves.

This legislation doesn't even prevent outright spying on Americans. The Executive merely will have to tell the court that they are trying to 'minimize' the information collection on US citizens.

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6/15/2008

nfl policy debate judge 04j142

Hi! Sorry, I've been overseas traveling, and my judging philosophy didn't get in the Judge Paradigm Book.

Judge 04J142 National Forensic League NFL Nationals 2008 Desert Lights Henderson Las Vegas Nevada Foothill High School FHS judging book paradigm book policy debate cross-examination debate team debate judge code judging code judging philosophy judging paradigm list of judges.

Here's the data in the form it's listed in the Judge Paradigm Book:

04J142 Nathaniel Dempsey Clayton High School MO Yes, No, No, Yes, No, Yes, 7 years, 21-30 rounds, TR, 4, NP, 7, 2, 3, 2, 2, 3, 3.

For Question 1B, I actually did do a tiny bit of policy debate in college (and I did a fair amount of parliamentary debate) but not enough that someone who was on the circuit regularly would consider me to have been an NDT or CEDA debater, so for the purposes of telling you about my experience, the technical answer is I didn't do much CEDA/NDT debate in college.

For Question 3, after TR, I would rank PM, SI, SS, GP, and finally HT.

For Questions 7 through 12, I made notes off to the side:
7) That doesn't necessarily mean I like T debate.
8) If they're actually competitive (CPs)
9) Make sure they link (generic positions)
10) Unless you're talking about things like CPs (conditional positions)
11) Just not too much--I want to see things get done (theory)
12) I don't really like Ks, but if you run it well and give me a clear way to evaluate it, do what you think is best for your strategy (critiques)

[Edit] removed cross-links to other web sites.

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