September 28, 2004
More Primary System Silliness (Not in Washington This Time)
According to this story on the (new and improved) Michael Badnarik campaign blog, yet another primary system is being challenged in the Supreme Court. The Libertarian Party has sued the state of Oklahoma on the grounds that its primary system violates the Party's right of freedom of political association by not allowing the Party to invite registered members of other parties to vote in their primary. I find this very curious, as the Libertarian Party of Washington State seems to have been a party to the lawsuit which invalidated Washington's old primary system (the press release from the Secretary of...
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September 27, 2004
An interesting tidbit: According to this article, Michael Badnarik's mother, Elaine, is running for Liutenant Governor of his home state, Indiana. Mrs. Badnarik is also a Libertarian. Guess it runs in the family....
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Penn HumanitiesForum/Class Schedule
A long overdue update on factors which will determine the content of my non-political postings over the next semester/year:
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- The first meeting of the Penn Undergraduate Humanities Forum was today. I was awarded a year-long research fellowship with the Humanities Forum last spring after submitting a research proposal. This year's theme is "Sleep and Dreams" and I will be doing research on my favorite philosopher, George Berkeley to determine how his philosophy of immaterialism can deal with the fact that we perceive things in dreams which we would like to say are not real....
- My class schedule. I should have posted this sooner but didn't. I'm taking two philosophy class, Intro to Ancient Philosophy, and Formal Logic II. I'm also taking Greek and two courses in computer science, but it is unlikely (though not impossible) that these will inspire anything posted here...
September 20, 2004
Badnarik Finally Comments on IP
On Slashdot today, Michael Badnarik finally comments on intellectual property law (see my earlier post on this here). The issue came up in the seventh question of the slashdot interview. While he doesn't give quite the answer I'd like, he does say that the Digital Millenium Copyright Act was a mistake, and he seems to think that the market should sort things out, rather than corporations lobbying the government to preserve artificial monopolies. He also seems to come out in support of file-sharing. Good stuff, overall....
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Censorship and Internet Porn
is blogging today
on obscenity laws and the possibility of regulating online pornography, and in particular access to it by children. This is a difficult issue for me, as I often find myself, in the ordinary course of living my life, watching television, using the Internet, accidentally exposed to content I find offensive, despite making an active attempt to avoid it. However, as a libertarian, I generally oppose government censorship, and don't trust the government (or myself) to distinguish pornography from art correctly 100% of the time, and I wouldn't want any true art permanently destroyed because of anti-pornography legislation. I also wouldn't want such legislation to result in the government monitoring the communications of private citizens, or artists of any variety having to clear their work with the government before publishing. I do, however, have some idea as to how to reconcile these issues to one another.
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September 3, 2004
How to Use Wikipedia Properly
Ed Felten is blogging today about questions on the quality of content on the free online encyclopedia, Wikipedia. According to Felten's quick survey of topics on which he is an expert (Princeton University, Princeton Township, himself, virtual memory, and the Microsoft antitrust case), one in six Wikipedia articles contains serious errors, whereas the other five are extremely detailed and accurate. First,concerning accuracy: I used to work on Wikipedia. It has been a few years, and none of my work is clearly evident any longer, but I worked on articles such as Fundamentalist Christianity, Byzantine text-type (of the New Testament), and...
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September 1, 2004
The Present State of Free Speech in America
We all heard about the "free speech zone" at the Democratic National Convention (in case you didn't, it was an area surrounded by razor wire under a freeway overpass). Well, today, the New York Times is reporting that at least 900 protesters were arrested yesterday throughout New York City, where the Republican National Convention is being held. Police broke up protests, often violently, before the protesters had a chance to do anything illegal. Ever heard of the First Amendment? No? Didn't think so... And to think that this crap cost tax payers $80 million... (That's just for the two conventions,...
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