Halloween Light Show 2011 – Party Rock Anthem

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Just for fun…

Informed Canadians Oppose Online Spying

Do you think it is a good idea for police to be allowed to listen to phone calls without getting a warrant first?

That is exactly what the Harper Conservatives are proposing to imbed into our Criminal Code.

We should all oppose this – especially as more of use use VOIP and as our cars and smart meters are constantly recording bucketloads of information about us.

Arm yourself – get informed!!!

‘Occupy Phoenix with AR-15’s’

If only more of the #occupy folks were like this…

With the Harper Conservatives poised to scrap the long-gun registry, this is a timely message:  freedom of speech can only be exercised as long as we have the means to defend ourselves from any government that would usurp onto themselves the power to muzzle us.

Our right to be armed at all times, in all places, is essential for us to retain the most core of our innate and unalienable rights, the very cornerstone of our society:  the freedom of speech!

(And, yes, I AM one of the proponents of the idea that ALL teachers ought to be required by law to be fully gun-certified and armed at all times while we entrust our children to their care:  it is of little consolation that the best 9-1-1 response times to schools are at under 10 minutes….a lot of kids can be shot by an intruder in 10 minutes!  If we entrust our children to their care, each teacher  MUST be personally responsible for their protection – even from an armed attack.)

The government’s right to possess and use arms derives from us, the citizens:  we may, if we choose to, confer upon the government the right to carry arms and, as our proxy, use violence in our defense as we, the citizens, have the responsibility to.  This does not, in any way, abrogate our right – or diminish our responsibility – to do so ourselves at all times.

Any attempt at arms regulation – and I DO mean ANY regulation – by the governmenonly weakens the government’s own power to arm its agents and use violence on out behalf!

As someone somewhere put it:

Armed, we are citizens.

Disarmed, we are subjects!

Video H/T:  CodeSlinger

Pat Condell: Haloween Burka


Maryam Namazie: ‘For a Free And Secular Middle East And North Africa’

From Maryam Namazie from ‘One Law For All’:

For Immediate Release, 27 October 2011

76 secularists and human rights campaigners, including Mina Ahadi, Nawal El Sadaawi, Marieme Helie Lucas, Hameeda Hussein, Ayesha Imam, Maryam Jamil, Maryam Namazie, Taslima Nasrin, Farida Shaheed, Fatou Sow, and Stasa Zajovic have signed on to a Manifesto for a Free and Secular Middle East and North Africa.
In light of the recent pronouncements of the unelected Libyan Transitional Council for ‘Sharia laws’, the signatories of the manifesto vehemently oppose the hijacking of the protests by Islamism or US-led militarism and unequivocally support the call for freedom and secularism made by citizens and particularly women in the region.
Secularism is a minimum precondition for a free and secular Middle East and for the recognition of women’s rights and equality.
We call on world citizens to support this important campaign by signing on to our petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/world-citizens-defend-a-free-and-secular-middle-east-and-north-africa.
We also ask that supporters click ‘like’ on our Facebook page to support this important campaign: http://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Free-and-Secular-Middle-East-and-North-Africa/271164176261820#!/pages/A-Free-and-Secular-Middle-East-and-North-Africa/271164176261820 and Tweet: #freesecularMENA in support of a free and secular Middle East and North Africa.
Manifesto for a Secular Middle East and North Africa
The 2009 protests in Iran followed by the Arab Spring have the potential to herald a new dawn for the people of the region and the world. The protests have clearly shown that people in the region, like people everywhere, want to live 21st century lives.
We, the undersigned, emphasise their modern and human dimension and wholeheartedly welcome this immense and historical development. We are vehemently opposed to their hijacking by Islamism or US-led militarism and support the call for a free and secular Middle East and North Africa made by citizens and particularly women in the region.
Secularism is a minimum precondition for the freedom and equality of all citizens and includes:
1. Complete separation of religion from the state.
2. Abolition of religious laws in the family, civil and criminal codes.
3. Separation of religion from the educational system.
4. Freedom of religion and atheism as private beliefs.
5. Prohibition of sex apartheid and compulsory veiling.
  1. Mina Ahadi, Spokesperson, International Committees against Stoning and Execution, Iran/Germany
  2. Marieme Helie Lucas, Sociologist, Founder and former international coordinator of Women Living Under Muslim Laws and founder of Secularism Is A Women’s Issue, Algeria/France
  3. Maryam Namazie, Spokesperson, Equal Rights Now – Organisation against Women’s Discrimination in Iran, Iran/UK
  4. Shahla Abghari, University Professor, Iran/USA
  5. Siavash Abghari, Esmail Khoi Foundation, Iran/USA
  6. Ahlam Akram, Palestinian Peace and Human Rights Writer and Campaigner, Palestine/UK
  7. Sargul Ahmad, Women’s Liberation in Iraq, Iraq/Canada
  8. Mahin Alipour, Coordinator, Equal Rights Now – Organisation against Women’s Discrimination in Iran, Iran/Sweden
  9. Reza Alkrami, Human Rights Activist, Iran/USA
  10. Farideh Arman, Coordinator, Committee to Defend Women’s Rights, Iran/Sweden
  11. Sultana Begum, Regional Gender Adviser, Diakonia Asia, Bangladesh
  12. Djemila Benhabib, Writer, Algeria/Canada
  13. Codou Bop, Journalist and Director of GREFELS, Dakar, Senegal
  14. Ariane Brunet, co-founder Urgent Action Fund, Québec, Canada
  15. Micheline Carrier, Sisyphe, Québec, Canada
  16. Patty Debonitas, Iran Solidarity, UK
  17. Denise Deliège Femmes En Noir, Belgium
  18. Equal Rights Now – Organisation against Women’s Discrimination in Iran, Sweden
  19. Fanny Filosof, Femmes en Noir, Belgium
  20. Mersedeh Ghaedi, New Channel TV Programme host, Iran/Norway
  21. Groupe de recherche sur les femmes et les lois, Dakar, Senegal
  22. Laura Guidetti, Marea Feminist Magazine, Italy
  23. Zeinabou Hadari, Centre Reines Daura, Niger
  24. Anissa Hélie, Historian, Algeria/France/USA
  25. Rohini Henssman, Human Rights Activist, India
  26. Hameeda Hossein, Chairperson Ain o Salish Kendra, Dhaka, Bangladesh
  27. Khayal Ibrahim, Women’s Liberation in Iraq, Iraq/Canada
  28. Leo Igwe, Founder, Nigerian Humanist Movement, Nigeria
  29. Ayesha Imam, Women’s Human Rights and Democracy Activist, Nigeria/Senegal
  30. International Campaign in Defence of Women’s Rights in Iran, Sweden
  31. International Committee against Execution, Germany
  32. International Committee against Stoning, Germany
  33. Iran Solidarity, Iran/UK
  34. Maryam Jamil, Women’s Liberation in Iraq, Iraq
  35. Sultana Kamal, Executive Director, Ain o Salish Kendra and Chairperson Transparency International, Bangladesh
  36. Abbas Kamil, Unity Against Unemployment in Iraq, Baghdad, Iraq
  37. Harsh Kapoor, South Asia Citizens Web, India
  38. Akbar Karimian, Human Rights Activist, Iran/UK
  39. Cherifa Kheddar, President of Djazairouna, Algeria
  40. Monica Lanfranco, Marea Feminist Magazine, Italy
  41. Houzan Mahmoud, Representative of Organisation of Women’s Freedom in Iraq, Iraq/UK
  42. Nahla Elgaali Mahmoud, Biologist, Sudan/UK
  43. Anwar Mir Sattari, Human rights Activist, Iran/Belgium
  44. Amena Mohsin, Professor, Dept. International Relations Dhaka University, Bangladesh
  45. Khawar Mumtaz, Director Shirkat Gah, Lahore, Pakistan
  46. Taslima Nasrin, Writer and Activist, Bangladesh
  47. U. M. Habibun Nessa, President, Naripokkho, Bangladesh
  48. Partow Nooriala, Poet, Writer and Human Rights Activist, Iran/USA
  49. Asghar Nosrati, Human Rights Activist, Iran/Sweden
  50. One Law for All, UK
  51. Pragna Patel, Southall Black Sisters, UK
  52. Fariborz Pooya, Iranian Secular Society, Iran/UK
  53. Protagora, Zagreb, Croatia
  54. Hassan Radwan, Activist, Egypt/UK
  55. Mary Jane Real, Women’s Human Rights Coalition, Manila, The Philippines
  56. Edith Rubinstein, Femmes en Noir, Belgium
  57. Nawal El Sadaawi, Writer, Egypt
  58. Fahimeh Sadeghi, Coordinator, International Federation of Iranian Refugees, Iran/Canada
  59. Gita Sahgal, Director, Centre for Secular Space, UK
  60. Nina Sankari, Secularist and Feminist, Poland
  61. Secularism Is A Women’s Issue (International Network)
  62. Aisha Lee Shaheed, London, UK
  63. Farida Shaheed, Shirkat Gah, Lahore, Pakistan
  64. Siba Shakib, Filmmaker, Writer and Activist, Iran/USA
  65. Sohaila Sharifi, Women’s Rights Campaigner, Iran/UK
  66. Issam Shukri, Head, Secularism and Civil Rights in Iraq, Iraq/Canada
  67. Southall Black Sisters, UK
  68. Fatou Sow, Sociologist CNRS, Dakar, Senegal
  69. Afsaneh Vahdat, Coordinator, International Campaign for Women’s Rights in Iran, Iran/Sweden
  70. Lino Veljak, Professor of Philosophy, Zagreb University, Croatia
  71. Fauzia Viqar, Director Advocacy and Communications, Shirkat Gah Women’s Resource Centre, Lahore, Pakistan
  72. Anne Marie Waters, One Law for All, UK
  73. Vivienne Wee, anthropologist, feminist and human rights activist, Singapore and Hong Kong, China
  74. Women In Black, Belgrade, Serbia
  75. Sara Zaker, Theatre Director, Bangladesh
  76. Stasa Zajovic, spokesperson Women in Black, Belgrade, Serbia
Manifeste pour la laicité au Moyen Orient et en Afrique du Nord
Les protestations de 2009 en Iran et le Printemps Arabe qui a suivi pourrait faire se lever une nouvelle aurore pour le peuple de la région et du monde. Les manifestations ont clairement montré que le peuple dans la région, comme partout, veut vivre au XXI° siècle.
 Nous sous signés, soulignons leur dimension moderne et humaine et soutenons de tout coeur cet immense tournant historique.  Nous nous opposons avec véhemence à ce qu’il soit détourné par l’islamisme ou par la militarisation sous l’égide des Etats Unis et reitérons l’appel pour un Moyen Orient et une Afrique du Nord libres et laiques, lancé par les citoyens et particulièrelent les femmes de la région.
 La laicité est le pré-requis minimum pour assurer la liberté et l’égalité de tous les citoyens, et cela inclue:
 1. la totale separation de la religion et de l’état.
2. l’abolition des lois religieuses en matière familiale et dans le code penal.
3. la séparation de la religion et du système d’éducation.
4. la liberté de religion et d’athéisme, définis comme croyances personnelles.
5. l’interdiction de l’apartheid sexuel et du voile obligatoire.
بيان من أجل شرق اوسط وشمال افريقيا علمانية
 إن احتجاجات إيران عام 2009 والربيع العربي الذي أعقبها تحمل أملاً بفجر جديد لشعوب المنطقة وللعالم. لقد أظهرت الاحتجاجات بشكل &#1608 ;اضح أن شعوب المنطقة، كغيرها من شعوب العالم، تسعي لحياه تواكب متطلبات القرن الحادي والعشرين.
 نحن، الموقعون أدناه، نؤكد على البعد الحديث والإنساني لهذه الثورات ونرحب ترحيبا حارا بهذا التطور التاريخي الكبير. ونحن ن&#159 3;ارض بشدّة سلب مكتسبات هذه الثورات سواء كان ذلك على يد الحركات الإسلامية أو السياسات العسكريتارية بقيادة امريكا، ونؤيد الدعوة لقيام شرق أوسط وشمال إفريقيا علمانية ب&# 1575;رادة المواطنين في المنطقة وخاصة النساء.
 إن العلمانية تمثّل الحد الأدنى من أجل تحقيق حرية ومساواة كل المواطنين، ويشمل ذلك:
 1. فصل الدين عن الدولة فصلاً تاما.
2. إلغاء التشريعات الدينية الخاصة بالأسرة والتشريعات المدنية والجنائية.
3. فصل الدين عن النظام التعليمي.
4. حرية الدين والإلحاد كمعتقدات شخصية.
5. منع سياسة التمييز الجنسي والحجاب الإجباري.
مانیفست برای خاورمیانه- شمال آفریفای سکولار
مبارزات سال 88 (2009 میلادی) در ایران و در پی آن “بهار عربی” این ظرفیت را دارد که طلوعی تازه را به مردم منطقه و جهان نوید دهد. اعتراضات به روشنی میدهد که م&#1 585;دم این منطقه، نظیر مردم هر جای دیگر، خواهان یک زندگی قرن بیست و یکمی هستند.
ما امضاء کنندگان زیر بر ابعاد انسانی و مدرن این مبارزات تاکید میگذاریم و با تمام وجود از این تحول عظیم تاریخی استقبال میکنیم. ما قاطعانه مخال&#16 01;ت خود را با مصادره این انقلابات و مبارزات توسط اسلام گرایی و یا  میلیتاریسم (دولتی) تحت رهبری آمریکا اعلام میداریم و از فراخوان “یک خاورمیانه و شمال آفریقای آزاد و سکولا&#1 585;” حمایت میکنیم که توسط شهروندان این منطقه  بویژه زنان مطرح شده است.
سکولاریسم  پیش شرط حداقل برای آزادی و برابری همه شهروندان و دربرگیرنده این مفاد است:
١-جدائی کامل مذهب از دولت.
٢-الغای قوانین مذهبی در قوانین خانواده، مدنی و جنایی.
٣-جدائی مذهب از سیستم آموزش و پرورش.
٤-آزادی مذهب و بی مذهبی بعنوان اعتقادات شخصی.
٥-ممنوعیت آپارتاید جنسی و حجاب اجباری.
For more information, contact:
Marieme Helie Lucas
Maryam Namazie
For a Free and Secular Middle East and North Africa
BM Box 2387, London WC1N 3XX, UK

Daniel Hannan: As Rome Fell, So Will Europe

Watch out for the super-cookie monsters!

We should never forget about cookies and their dangers…nor should we forget that cookie-monsters are always trying to figure out how to make their datamining code sneakier, harder to detect and harder to remove.

Though, not all is sad on the technology front:  Gabe Newell recently explained Valve’s philosophy…piracy happens less when companies treat their customers like, well, valued customers.  I know this is anecdotal only, but my highly limited experience confirms the veracity of this philosophy.

And for something neat:

HT:  Hacker News

When the ‘cure’ is worse than the ‘disease’…

When one of the most rotten, corrupt, contemptible institutions in the history of humanity – the Vatican – calls for world tax to fund an all-encompassing world government which would over-rule the legitimate governments of nation states….

And when that institution speaks as if this was just a ‘speeding up’ of the inevitable course we are now…

And when this call is said to line up with the #occupy goals…

.we should sit up and pay attention.


Ezra Levant interviews Daniel Pipes

Dr. Pipes says things as I, too, see them: