Tag Archives: freedom

“The right of the people to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated,”

A Charlottesville man was arrested for protesting airport security searches. Key quote, written on his chest and abdomen:

“Amendment 4: The right of the people to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated.”

I wonder if liberal Washington Post blogger Ezra Klein needs someone to explain what this quote means.

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Christmas Sweater Club Punished At Local High School

Ho! Ho! Ho! The members of an informal high school “Christmas Sweater Club” have been punished by their school for spreading Christmas cheer. Key quote:

Mother Kathleen Flannery said an administrator called her and explained “not everyone wants Christmas cheer. That suicide rates are up over Christmas, and that they should keep their cheer to themselves, perhaps.”

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Federal examiners Force Oklahoma Bank To Remove Crosses and Bible Verse

Freedom of speech alert: Federal bank examiners have forced an Oklahoma bank to remove all Christian symbols. Key quote:

The examiners . . . deemed a Bible verse of the day, crosses on the teller’s counter and buttons that say “Merry Christmas, God With Us.” [as] inappropriate. The Bible verse of the day on the bank’s Internet site also had to be taken down.

What these things have to do with auditing the financial practices of a bank I really don’t know.

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U.K.: Red Cross offices remove Christmas decorations to avoid offending Muslims

More polticially correct madness: The Red Cross in the United Kingdom has told all its offices to remove all Christmas decorations in order to avoid offending Muslims. Key quote:

“We have been instructed that we can’t say anything about Christmas and we certainly can’t have a Christmas tree. . . . We are not supposed to show any sign of Christianity at all.”

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FBI accused of planting backdoor in OpenBSD IPSEC stack

This story should give everyone the willies: One of the developers of the OpenBSD operating system (an open source OS comparable but different than Linux) has admitted that ten years ago, in exchange for cash, he and others helped the FBI place “surveillance-friendly holes” in the operating system.

I wonder what part of this sentence the FBI does not know how to read: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

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The FCC commissioner wants to regulate on the airwaves

Freedom of speech alert: The FCC commissioner has made it clear in a recent appearance on the BBC that he strongly supports having the FCC regulate in some manner the news coverage of radios and television. You can see the video here. Key quote from the article above:

In practice, Copps’s recommendations — however well intended — necessarily entail expanding the power of bureaucrats to monitor media content, power which can then be used for objectionable and politicized goals.

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The greed for power, or why it is always better to do without government help

In an article today on spaceref.com “NASA: It’s Our Space Station – Not Yours,” Keith Cowing has some harsh words for NASA and its management of the research on ISS. Based on what he witnessed at a NASA meeting, it appears that NASA wants to retain control over all research on the space station, while denying access to outside other researchers. Key quote:

In addition to prohibiting the ISS National Laboratory contractor from getting its hands on human-based research, Mark Uhran also stated that any proposal that proposed to do anything with spacecraft systems or engineering would be similarly deemed non-responsive. In other words two of the most interesting things you can do on the ISS – the sorts of thing you’d want a larger research base to focus on (assuming you are really interested in outside participation) are off limits due to executive fiat.

Where is NASA’s justification for limiting the ability of the private and educational sectors from making full utilization of the amazing capabilities that are offered by the ISS? Answer: NASA made it up. Truth be known, NASA was dragged kicking and screaming into supporting this National Laboratory concept. Congress had to enact a law to make them do it.

None of this surprises me. NASA is a government agency, and as a government agency it is going to protect its turf, come hell or high water. It is for this reason I think it a bad idea for the new space rocket companies to take any NASA money, up front. If they do, NASA will immediately use those funds as a club to force these new companies to do things as NASA wishes, rather than being free to compete and innovate on their own. In other words, NASA will use the funds to maintain control of all space exploration.

Better the new companies build their rockets and spaceships on their own, and then sell these new inventions to NASA or whoever else wants to use them. Let the profits pay for the work, not the needs and regulations of a government agency.

Not only will this free competiton produce a lot more creativity and innovation, it will almost certainly help to reduce the cost of space travel, as these companies fight to gain market share. And most importantly, it will frame the future exploration of space in the context of freedom rather that a state-run endeavor.

And isn’t freedom the principle that the United States of America stands for?

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Church Groups Harass Clyde’s Sport Shop – Plan Protest Demonstration

Battle of the protesters! Three Baltimore-based anti-gun church groups have begun a campaign to harass Maryland gun stores. In turn, the first store targeted has fought back. Key quote:

The religious leaders obtained a Baltimore County permit for an anti-gun demonstration from 2 PM until 7 PM in front of Clyde’s Sport Shop. They reportedly requested a permit for 1,000 demonstrators. The Baltimore County Police limited their permit to 75 demonstrators. In response to the planned demonstration, Clyde’s scheduled a Customer Appreciation Day featuring free hot dogs, hamburgers, soft drinks, side dishes, popcorn and a DJ to provide music.

The church groups were nowhere to be found but over 200 gunnies had a very good time and enjoyed good food. It seems that several local churches took the Heeding God’s Call group to task for harassing Clyde’s, whom they consider to be a good neighbor and law abiding business.

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ELISABETH SABADITSCH-WOLFF’s November 23 court hearing

As the court proceedings occurred during Thanksgiving week, I am late reporting this: On November 23 Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff had her court hearing in Austria, where she faces imprisonment for speaking out against Islam. You can see a very detailed report of the hearing here. The next hearing is now scheduled for January 18, 2011.

All in all, this whole trial is a travesty of justice. Sabaditsch-Wolff merely quoted the Koran in describing why she considers it a threat. More importantly, doesn’t freedom of speech mean freedom of speech? That some Muslims were offended by her comments is completely irrelevant.

You can send money to Sabaditsch-Wolff’s legal fund here.

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