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Current Topic: Society

Canada has better healthcare, eh?
Topic: Society 11:09 am EDT, Apr 24, 2004

MONTREAL (CP) - A 21-year-old man died of appendicitis after he was refused treatment at an emergency clinic because he didn't have his provincial health card with him.

Gerald Augustin complained of stomach pains on Thursday but the receptionist at the St-Andre medical centre told him he had to return home to get his health card. He didn't make it back to the clinic in Montreal's east end.


Rouslene Augustin, administrator at the St-Andre clinic, said the man didn't appear to have any urgent symptoms when he came to the clinic.

"If this guy was an emergency case, we would accept him if he had his card or not," she said.


American ERs, for all their faults, have to take you anytime. I guess Canada is great though, if you have your card.

Canada has better healthcare, eh?

One Year Later
Topic: Society 8:04 pm EST, Mar 17, 2004

A year ago today I was visiting my mom in the hospital. She was recovering from surgery at Vanderbilt. Dad and my sister were there as well.

The news was hitting on the television that the UN weapons inspectors were pulling out, and Bush told us we were going in. I think that's the first time I truly realized how wars today work.

With the first year of occupation almost over, I'm reflecting this week on friends I know who will be put in harm's way to guard oil. I'm understanding how this critical resource will change the immediate future. I'm thinking about shiny chromed SUV's and the owners who will be paying an ever increasing premium on the fuel to drive them. And never forgetting that it has a blood price attached.

RE: RIAA raiding small music stores for selling DJ mix CDs
Topic: Society 10:49 am EDT, Oct 16, 2003

Decius wrote:
] ] RIAA agents, backed up by police, have started to raid
] ] Midwestern record stores that carry DJ mixes. On
] ] September 23, Berry's Music in Indianapolis, Indiana, was
] ] raided; according to proprietor Alan Berry, police
] ] confiscated $10,000 worth of mix discs by the likes of DJ
] ] World and DJ Paul Bunyan. "The record labels want the
] ] independent record stores out of the business," Berry
] ] says.

This is why you should buy your music from labels not affiliated with the RIAA cartel. There are plenty of great labels out there.

Sorry, but if a mix CD is sold and has unlicensed usage of an RIAA cartel copyrighted song, it's fair game for them to bust the store. There are rules related to sample clearance, licensing, etc. Selling mix CDs is not covered by fair use. Even if you get the mix CD from the artist, if the artist has inked the deal with the RIAA, they are almost always forfeiting their hold on the copyright. This article is not very clear on whether the $10000 worth of mix discs were actually licensed or not. If they weren't, that $10000 was probably inflated out of nowhere for dramatic effect, sort of like the bogus figures you hear from the RIAA about lost sales. I'm imagining they just tallied up what the asking price was for them, rather than the cost of physical media and packaging.

This article also seems to be missing another big point. Downloading copyrighted songs without permission from the copyright holder is illegal. It really is THAT simple. Want to avoid getting sued by the RIAA? Don't illegally download music, forget the first two bullet points.

I don't understand the whole derision towards actually purchasing recorded music. Check out this quote from the article:

"Alternately, you can be a good little consumer and pay for everything you listen to."

When did buying music become a bad thing? Personally, I believe music can still be a commodity in this day and age. There is plenty of free music out there as well though. But if you want RIAA music but you don't want to pay for it? Boo hoo. Yes, the RIAA sucks and they are fighting change rather than adapting. Yes, the DMCA sucks and should be repealed. It will take time to undo these bad things. But getting into a pissing match with them is only making their case stronger.

With regard to the economics of "independent" record stores not being able to get the bulk discounts like the big chains do, sorry, them's the breaks. If the RIAA people are satan incarnate, don't deal with them. If your store can't keep the lights on by selling independent music, it's the symptom of a changing world. I've seen really great indie stores come and go in Nashville. With the internet, I can order direct with so many labels now that I don't need to visit a physical store. And when you are in direct contact with the label or it's authorized distributor, they are usually MUCH cooler about giving you bigger samples of the music to hear before you buy. The writing is on the wall for independent music stores. Time to evolve or die.


Oh, and if you want to check out what exactly is in question:

These do not look like legitimately licensed compilations to me. And they are charging $14.00 for them. They must have inflated that $10000 claim. I don't feel sorry for these people at all.

RE: RIAA raiding small music stores for selling DJ mix CDs

RE: U.S. Threatens to Cut Aid to Israel Over Barrier
Topic: Society 3:08 pm EDT, Sep 16, 2003

bucy wrote:
] ] Israel has asked the United States for $9 billion in loan
] ] guarantees aimed at jumpstarting its economy which has
] ] been damaged by nearly three years of violence.
] ]
] ] The United States had threatened to reduce the package by
] ] the amount Israel spends on a security barrier cutting
] ] through the West Bank. Israel and the United States
] ] disagree over the course of the barrier, with Washington
] ] trying to minimize the amount of West Bank land included
] ] on the ``Israeli'' side.
] Finally, the US is starting to take a harder line against
] Israel. I think its fair to say that a lot of our troubles
] with the Islamic world are directly attributable to our
] (totally bogus) policy towards Israel.

Yeah, it's a nice gesture, but I don't have any hope of the threat being acted upon. This same threat came up a few weeks ago when they started building the wall east of Jerusalem but it was quickly retracted. Israel receives roughly 25% of the US foreign aid budget as it is. They are even allowed to subsidize their domestic arms industry with US funds. No other nation gets to do that, they have to buy US equipment. (Nice racket, eh?)

Israel has become a middle east proxy state for US global hegemony. As long as they are serving to protect US interests, a blind eye will be turned to the occupation of Palestinian territory. The blowback for these policies will not be pretty.

RE: U.S. Threatens to Cut Aid to Israel Over Barrier

Interz0ne: Cease and Desist Letter - 20030411
Topic: Society 3:05 pm EDT, Apr 14, 2003

Now on Slashdot:

Interz0ne: Cease and Desist Letter - 20030411

RE: War. Still a Good Idea.
Topic: Society 6:36 pm EST, Apr  5, 2003

] ] However rhetorical it's become, the following is no less
] ] true: The Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks forced the
] ] United States to change the way it responds to external
] ] threats.

But this country has the economic power, the military strength and the political will to do something about it. That's a blessing, because we can defend ourselves in ways few other nations can. It's also our curse, because if we don't deal with the problem--as the United Nations refused to do--no one else can or will. So the duty falls to us, and the time has come to stop playing games with national security and--by extension--the lives of not only Americans but those of oppressed innocents across the globe as well.


I am so goddamn sick of people tying 9/11 to this ill-conceived conquest in the Middle East. The current leaders don't give a shit about our security. They still cooperate with terrorists and nations that fund them if it serves US interests.

There is a strong case for showing the Bush administration's complicity in the 9/11 attacks. For example, look at our relationship with Pakistan. We turned a blind eye to their DIRECT FUNDING of Mohammed Atta. Any effective investigation of 9/11 has been shelved. More background:

There are still plenty of unanswered questions. Rather than actually investigate and try to root out the base of operations for the 9/11 terrorists, we're conquering Iraq. Figure that one out.

RE: War. Still a Good Idea.

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