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2600 Staffer Arrested During Republican Convention 924

Salsaman writes " 2600 has just posted this article about how one of their staff members (ShapeShifter) has been arrested in Philadelphia during the Republican convention. According to 2600 he was 'arrested while walking down a street talking on a phone.'" There's a ton of information there on the protests and folks being arrested and mistreated. Of course there were extremists who deserved it, but a lot of folks were protesting peacefully. (This has no relevance, but I'm abusing Slashdot to say that I think Bush is a rotten candidate, and while I don't like Gore, I would vote for a inanimate carbon rod for president before I would vote for GWB).

Addendum: I find it amusing that people are so pissed about me using Slashdot to editorialize my opinions. I've been doing this for 3 years, why would I stop now? If you want unbiased news, read the mainstream press... look how honest and unbiased their coverage is! We're humans here, with actual opinions and everything. Besides, if I don't get to soapbox once in awhile, wouldn't Slashdot be boring?

I find it amusing that I've recieved pretty much equal mail from democrats (Rah rah! Way to state the case!) and republicans (I will no longer read Slashdot because I don't think you should be allowed to have opinions and obviously your opinions are stupid. And you are stupid too. And I hate you). Both missed the point: I don't like either party (I don't even like parties). But I really detest Bush. And since this is America, I can say that! And you can disagree! Hooray!

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2600 Staffer Arrested During Republican Convention

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  • If someone can't afford health care, good food, and safe living conditions, then why the hell are they having children??

    First and foremost, it's because they're financially rewarded for doing so. The more children you have, the less tax you pay (if you pay taxes), and the more welfare you receive (if you receive welfare).

    Second, it's because American society's view of sexuality is skewed. People are afraid to discuss contraception and abortion openly. Some people (you know who they are) commit terrorist atrocities like killing doctors who perform abortions, or lesser atrocities like harrassing women who visit clinics. Various religious groups (you know who they are) try to enforce their particular moral perversions -- homosexuality is a sin, masturbation is a sin, contraception is a sin, pre-marital sex is a sin, adultery is a sin, prostitution is a sin, ad nauseum -- upon everyone else by buying relevant legislation. Oh, and besides that, they try to prevent children from learning anything about sex.

    In an environment like that, is it really a surprise that there are unwanted pregnancies? And that they're carried to term?

  • [...]
    and the abuse of civil rights, i.e., pepper spray on non-violent people

    A lot of people don't know this, but the police standard for using pepper spray is not "violence" or "resistance", but merely "non-compliance". That is, if they tell you to do something, and you don't, they can blast you with the shit. The fact that you are "peaceful" doesn't matter.

    This came to the forefront with a videotape of a (greenpeace?) protest in California, where peaceful protesters had their eyelids held open and pepperspray applied directly to their eyeballs with cotton swabs.

    What really sucks is that the police are always championing new gadgets as allowing them to use less force. I.e., "We should be allowed to use the Arwen gun / pepperspray / tazer so that we won't have to shoot armed suspects". Sometimes new weapons are used like that, but usually it works the other way: the police are allowed to use more force when they would otherwise have had to resolve the situation through other means (waiting people out, or the looks-bad-on-tv billyclub).

  • by sillysally ( 193936 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @11:53AM (#875633)
    He uses Slashdot for his views about software, why not politics?

    because what he wrote was not "views". It was

    • Flamebait
    • Troll
    • Offtopic
    • Overrated
    and the complaints should be considered as moderation. If he had written something halfway Inciteful, Informative, or even just reasoned, folks would have had a chance to counter argue. But just to get up and shout "Bush sucks" is what Slashdot is not all about.
  • so it's the tyranny of twits that will take away rob's editorial freedom, not a takeover by andover. i'm not all that surprised...
  • 1) the minority in any group is the one that makes the largest stink, makes the most heated flames, hurls the largest stones, etc.

    2) no matter how much you hate AC's, you eventually act like one (Hi CmdrTaco! *Waves)

    3) we all like RMS, ESR, CmdrTaco, and other zealots... untill they disagree with us.

    4) you can always tell the ones that look like they're going to lose an arguement, because they hit the lowest.

    the moral of this post?

    you're not going to agree with everyone. deal with it.

    you're a commie, she's a socialist, that guy over there is a conservative, that cute girl is a democrat. that guy with the big muscles is a libertarian. the guy picking flowers is of the green party.

    my opinion stinks like a big festering sewer treatment plant.

    your's does too.

    now shut the fuck up, and get along with the rest of the world.

    thank you for your time.
    1. You are not throwing your vote away when you vote your conscience.
    2. A definiton of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. It is time for change.
    3. The Democrats and Republicans are not two parties. They are the same party. They may differ in rhetoric, but their platform is the same: BIG GOVERNMENT.

    In a sense you're right: you must vote for one party or the other. Either the party that says that government is most fit to run your life, or the party that says that YOU are most fit to run your life. Do you thing that G.W. Bush and Al Gore are best fit to run your life?

  • Well, I can't argue with you about the beer...
  • So someone that is walking back and forth over a crosswalk is not a pedestrian?

    Well, they're a pedestrian, sure. Just like someone who drives around in circles in the highway is a "motorist". There are appropriate behaviours for both pedestrians and motorists -- and in both these cases, the correct behaviour simply amounts to being considerate to those you share the road with.

    Hijacking public assets....so if I refuse to leave a park area after I have my picknick to lounge around should be illegal?

    Using a park area is not "hijacking public assets", unless you're making the entire park unusable for others.

    "Public assets" belong to the public.

    Exactly. And since they are shared resources, no-one has the right to monopolize access to them.

    To assume that one person or a set of people should not be allowed to make use of it is ludicrous.

    Exactly. That is why the protestors were wrong to block the area and make it unusable for others.

    I understand where you are coming from, but with your interpretation a citizens right to protest and assemble is restricted to private property

    Not at all. You can also assemble on public property, as long as you don't make large amounts of public property unusable for others in the process. There's a difference between blocking the interstate and using an area like a public park.

  • by Dr. Sp0ng ( 24354 ) <mspong@gmail.cMOSCOWom minus city> on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:11AM (#875678) Homepage
    The Libertarian candidate, Harry Browne, is much better than any of the other candidates this year. He views things with an open mind and seems to agree almost completely with me and most people I know on the issues. Of course, he is in favor of legalizing drugs, which I'm biased towards, but in general he seems to be a much more worthy candidate. He's obviously not going to win, but I'd rather give him my support than anybody else.

    There was a big writeup about him on Smokedot [smokedot.org] a few weeks back: http://smokedot.org/article.pl? sid=00/07/26/0014226 [smokedot.org].
  • by wrenling ( 99679 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:11AM (#875679)
    I dont have the link, but there was an article on Salon.com [salon.com] about the protesters who were being held more than 48 hours without a phone call allowed, most of them had not been fed, and half of the cell blocks had the water turned off, so they could not use the toilets. One of the 'protestors' arrested was a jogger who happened to get caught in the crowd.

    Something changed in America after the WTO riots. Somehow the police think they have carte blanche to treat citizens like animals for utilizing their right of free assembly and free speech. I can't see the difference between how China is treating members of the Falun Gong and whats happening in Philadelphia (and what did happen) in Seattle.

    We argue and fight for our online rights, but those online rights wont mean anything if we cant use those same rights in public, in the 'real' world.
  • I'm sorry, but you're simply talking out of your ass. You talk to any policeman, FBI agent, etc. worth is salt and he'll tell you the same thing: It's extremely difficult to restrain someone without hurting them at all. Add to this:
    a) A possible large weight advantage
    b) A possibly active/violent subject
    c) Possible training in how to resist arrest
    d) Noisy and chaotic surroundings
    e) Potentially dangerous crowd situation....

    then you try and move this person.

    A little of any martial art does not qualify you as an expert, especially when all you know is the classroom. If you really believe your mock struggle is the same as that of an enraged man, then you need a few more lessons.

    Furthermore, even if you assume that you are right here, where are these great officers supposed to come from? I don't see you volunteering. I don't see you volunteering your tax dollars either. Nor are you willing to give the policemen respect or the benefit of the doubt. So what is your contribution here, other than Monday morning armchair quarterbacking (quite literally I might add)?
  • This is the best article I've read posted to Slashdot in a long time. Kudo to CmdrTaco for standing up for opinion. And, hey, I happen to agree. There is no basis for the election of a president who used cocaine during his "formative" years and lies to the general public about such use (this is even before he's president) -- when at the same time he stands together with those -- mostly Republicans -- who choose to bash the current president over a perfectly legal sexual encounter. Vote NO for neW Coke!

  • by avdp ( 22065 )
    Your right to assemble doesn't give you the right to break other laws or city ordinances (remember, your rights end right were mine start). And you don't have to be injuring people and/or destroying property to be breaking the peace. Blocking traffic for hours (for example), is certainly not a right and is in not protected by the first amendement (or any other amendement) even if you're doing so to protest.

    People that were really demonstrating peacefully were left alone. There were tons of such demonstrations all over philly, and they were left alone.

    Those that chose to break the law (or were conspiring to) are facing the full wrath of the justice system. Excuse me if I don't feel bad - especially when we saw the alternative in Seattle not too long ago.

    Coming from a country that is just a tad older than the US I find your arrogance amusing :) Like you (or the US) invented democracy or something...
  • Is this (BMD + border guards) indeed Libertarian Party policy, and do you think it sensible or not?

    Yes, it is, and no, I don't.

    But I disagree with a hell of lot more Democrat policies and actions, and Republican policies and actions.

    George Bush wants to greatly increase defense spending. Al Gore wants to greatly decrease defense spending.

    Harry Browne wants to basically leave defense spending alone, but shift a lot of it away from foreign adventures and into a national missile defense system. That sounds pretty sensible to me.

    George Bush thinks the answer to prosperity is to cut taxes on the rich, so they'll be able to pay more to employees. Al Gore thinks the answer to prosperity is to raise taxes on the rich and give it to the poor.

    Harry Browne thinks the answer to prosperity is let people keep their damn money, instead of taking it away from them in the first place. The founding fathers agreed, it wasn't until the early 20th Century that we strayed.

    Yes, Harry and I disagree on a couple of points; but George and I disagree on more, and Al and I probably couldn't agree on a restaurant. We certainly don't agree on Tipper. :-)

    I will not vote for anyone who doesn't agree with me on both of these points:

    1) No restriction of my First Amendment rights, short of a clear and present danger to others.

    2) No restriction of my Second Amendment rights, short of a clear and present danger to others.

    Bush fails on the former, and Gore fails on both. Browne passes with flying colors.

  • How was this the haves vs. the have nots? It seemed to be the violent protesters vs. the police. Just because you do not have does not If a guy pushes a police officer off his bike give you the right to destroy public and private property. People too lazy to vote are quick to flip dumpsters in the street. Have nots? These people are well funded. They seem to have.
    As for the police being heavy handed...how so? should he sit on the ground and take it? When they press against mounted police spooking horses and thus threatening the police, the horse, and the people nearby should they do nothing? When they destroy property should they do nothing?
    You seem to forget theat there were days of peacefull protests that were held without incident.
    What was their cause? It seemed to be just to disrupt society and the political process. The system has all sorts of ways to create change. Violence is not they way.
    Finally, China (the government) could care less what the US does within its borders. They only car about our foreign policy. Arresting violent protesters is the RIGHT thing to do.
  • And under what circumstances is ripping the ear off of a person just punishment? What would the person have to be doing to deserve that kind of a punishment BEFORE being tried and found guilty?

    The problem here is that you seem lack a sense of proportion. As a general rule protesting, failing to clear the road, disrupting traffic etc are harmless acts and at worst you should be expected to pay a fine and be on your way. Beating and mutilations are not just punishment in a free society.

    A Dick and a Bush .. You know somebody's gonna get screwed.

  • Making gas bombs can be a misdemeanor

    OK, granted. The real problem is that someone is setting bail for *a misdemeanor offense* at either $500K or $1 million.

    That strikes me as violating the constitutional provision regarding excessive fines or bail.
  • apparently you're more knowledgable, please enlighten us.

    apparently, you're just plain stupid: I already did enlighten you. I didn't say slashdot wasn't his site, I said [repeating myself] considere the comments as moderation according to the system that Rob invented. If you wanna run your mouth around the big kids, you're gonna hafta do better than you did.

  • if rob posts something to his site it is by definition on-topic. and it's ok, i'm fine with my normal crowd[0], no need to run around with "big kids." as far as being flame bait and a troll, it's my hope that the people who consider it to be so go back to whatever cave they came from and go do something useful[1].

    [0] the "clueful and able to spell" gang.
    [1] discovering fire would be wise for those in the norther hemisphere - winter is coming.
  • More importantly, the guy is way ahead of all the other third party candidates, is on the ballot in 30 states already (including Montana :-)

    Nitpick: whoever the reform party candidate is --- either Buchanan or Hagelin, we'll find out this week --- will be on the ballot in all fifty, and get matching funds, as well.

  • First off, thanks for a reply. And I think now that I've calmed down a bit, I can probably accept the fact that many of the accusations made against the police are pretty much false or blown way out of proportion.

    I'm a loyal 2600 subscriber myself, and I believe in the things that they are fighting for, but sometimes I get the feeling that the whole truth isn't being told.

    I'll try to be patient while waiting to find out exactly what whatshisname did to get arrested.
  • Transfer more money over to the private sector where businesses are reeling in the significant drop in employee productivity as we deal with a national drug addiction.

    I'm a reasonably productive software engineer for a major corporation, as are most of my friends. Many people in my social circle, including me, are regular pot smokers, and occasionally indulge in ... other ... susbtances, usually hallucinogens.

    My employer hasn't been complaining about massive drops in productivity recently, nor have my friends' employers. In my case, because my use of drugs *increases* when my general morale is better, i tend to be *more* productive when i'm using --- because both increased use and increased productivity are side-effects of morale improvement.
  • Well, at least he didn't advocate stepping up the fight against terriers. (that was Bush Jr.)


  • Upon further reflection of the whole incident, combined with the obscenely small amount of information being released about anything at all dealing with these riots, I'm inclined to agree that not everything is being said here.

    While Mr. Phone guy was probably doing something suspicious (he is a cracker / cracker / phreak, I would presume) I don't know that he'd do something to get him into trouble, as those 2600 blokes are in more than enough. But I guess we'll see what happens eventually.
  • Sounds like Philly is using a stripped down version of Chicago circa 1968. Would that make it picoDaley ;-)

    BTW, that was the Democratic national convention in Chicago, 1968. (yes, when I was a kid I got to watch it on local TV as it happened, did not have to wait for the history spin machines)

    Police misconduct transcends political parties.

  • You don't seem to get it. It is the job of a police officer to restrain people. If a police officer can not perform this task then they don't belong on the street.
    What does it matter weather I volunteer or "support" them? I don't volunteer to help surgeons either but they seem to be able to do their jobs without my help. If by any chance a surgeon messes up and harms somebody in the course of doing their jobs they stand to get sued and deservedly so.
    The cops need to stop whining about how hard their jobs are get on with it. There are lots of hard jobs deal with it or quit.

    A Dick and a Bush .. You know somebody's gonna get screwed.

  • I'm not, but a good friend of mine lives there. Your calmer, gentler police put his head through a car windshield, and he hadn't hurt anyone or damaged any property. Of course your local news shows only happy pictures, what the hell else do you expect? It's owned by the same people that bought the politicians.
  • Nobody is arrested for "walking down the street talking on a cell phone".

    I'm sure if you asked all 400+ people who were arrested in Philidelphia during the convention, every single one will say "I was just walking down the street, minding my own business!", too.

  • You don't seem to get it. It is the job of a police officer to restrain people.

    That is just one task among many.

    If a police officer can not perform this task then they don't belong on the street

    You are blind to three major issues here:
    A) We need the police, and we needed the police to contain those protests.

    B) In this particular case the police DID do their job and quite admirably. Of the thousands of protesters the police dealt with we only have a few confirmed reports of injuries. This is quite good by any measure, and particularly when you put them in context, other than the one which you pull out of your ass.

    C) Fiscal and social restraints. It is a pretty crappy job. If the city _needs_ 5k officers, and only 7k apply, how "elite" can you realistically expect them to be? Sure, you can cut 9 of 10 of them out till you only have the best, but they can't perform the job in its entirity.

    Even if you assume it possible select and train officers to the point where there are zero accidents, it simply is not feasible. As bad as it might taste to you, we're better off having 5k somewhat flawed officers controlling a crowd in force than 10 ninjas--believe it or not. Furthermore, even in the most elite of military units (e.g., Navy Seals, Delta, etc.), despite all the training they have, they still have a couple accidents every year where they shoot each other when working in close quarters. These are the best of the best, and they still mess up. While such accidents may be reduced by intensive training, the fruits they bear are not necessarily worthwhile for everything. Hence, the bulk of the armed forces is still made up of Joe Averages, where the word friendly fire is all too common. Yet we have millions of officers whose training you're not willing to pay for, and you're unable to stomach the fact that accidents will happen.

    Finally, a few quick remarks, surgeons too have accidents, despite all those years of training. I don't hear you lumping them all together. As for liability, when is the last time you looked at medical mal-practice insurance? I know many doctors who'll gladly show you. If you think getting sued is just for the guilty, you're wrong...

    And what about the injuries inflicted on the officers by the protestors? Why is it that you can accept no injuries on the part of the officers, yet all of them on the part of the protesters? Why, when the protestors clearly show the capacity for violence, do you act like we have the luxary of using police? Get real.
  • Is the New York Times a good journal? Does it represent good journalism? Now have you ever read it? NOW tell me honestly, aren't they have a certain opinion bias?
  • Breaking up a monopoly like Microsoft, a "socialist" move? Shee, go visit a socialist country, it's full of monopolies. Monopolies work AGAINST the capitalistic free market.
  • Gore had better win this election. Dubya is about two things: the christian right, and big oil. The christian right part of it is what really steams me.

    If Dubya is elected, it will be an insult for me to have to look at the guy every time he gets up and talks. The guy is a moron, and it is obvious he doesn't know shit.

    Gore may have had the "inventing the internet" fiasco, but he is still easily the better choice for anyone that cares about tech issues. His poorly worded comment was actually about his support in congress for facilitating faster development of a nationwide network (which was absolutely true. He was the guy who coined "info superhighway", and although lame, his intentions are good).

    Personally I'm voting for a third party - either Nader or Browne - because that is really the best thing I can do with my vote. They won't win, but if more people vote for third parties, they will get more respect, and who knows? We just might have a system with several legitimate parties, which would be a Good Thing.

    But since the race is between Gore and Dubya, Gore had better win. It is imperative that Dubya loses this election.

    "What a waste it is to lose one's mind. Or not to have a mind is being very wasteful. How true that is"

  • I find it very disturbing that anyone could seriously believe what you said. You appear to suggest that the police should be robots ("Just follow your training and orders!" went out of style in Nuremburg) and reach the same decisions with a few seconds of thought in a crisis point that you reached with much, much less information and much, much more time to ponder it.

    There was an interesting article in the local paper yesterday about the police allowing more vocal critics to participate in training exercises [uniontrib.com]. The general consensus seemed to be that the job was a lot harder than most people thought and that it's much, much easier to make claims like yours than to decide what would be "a measured and acceptable way" to act in the short amount of time available. This definitely did not mean, however, that everyone decided the cops were completely in the right, just that the problem is a lot more difficult than most people think.

  • In the 1980's, police successfully handled protests despite all the examples of violent protests in the 1960s. So no, I don't think a race riot in 1992 had a significant effect on why the police are beating the crap out of non-violent protesters in 2000.

  • How about a dose of anti-Bush jr. [realchange.org] propaganda.

  • by Frizzle Fry ( 149026 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @12:50PM (#875817) Homepage
    Yeah, I'm voting for Al Gore too.

    The concept of illegal plants and animals is obnoxious and ridiculous.
  • I'm tired of living in a socialist country (Canada), and while I'm not too enthused by either the Democrats or the Republicans, Ralph Nader is not the answer that the USA wants or needs.

    I'm a social liberal, but a fiscal conservative. What does that mean? It means that I believe abortions should be legal and obtainable, the government shouldn't have to pay for them. Nor should the HMOs. (Really, 9 times out of 10, an unwanted pregancy could have been avoided through responsible use of birth control.) I believe in freedom of speech, gay and lesbian marriage, racial equality without affirmative action, and labor costs being driven by free market capitalism without the artificial inflation and meddling that unions do.

    If I were an American citizen, I'd have no idea who to vote for. On one hand, the Republicans make fiscal sense. On the other hand, they're also fundamentally evil, protected by an impermeable shroud of religious self-righteousness. On one hand, the Democrats believe in the same things I do, but on the other hand, they're also big proponents of labor unions and punishing environmental laws that will screw all businesses and individuals.


    Yeah? Well at least us Canadians don't leave our poor out on the street to die because we're too cheap to give them medical attention. Private insurance systems are all fine and dandy for those who can afford them, but that's not everybody.

    Ahh, but this statement really irks me, speaking as a Canadian. I'll tell you a story that underscores all the flaws with socialized medicine.

    It was the day that Princess Diana died. I remember this, because it was on all the TV sets in the hospital waiting room.

    I was feeling really shitty, and was able to diagnose my ailment. I had strepped throat, and needed an antibiotic prescription.

    Of course, to save OHIP (Ontario's provincial "HMO"), I tried first to go to a walk-in clinic. Of course, it was a Sunday evening, so they were all closed. Feeling bad that I was going to go to a hospital emergency room (it costs the government a lot), I had to do it anyway.

    At 9:PM, I arrived, and told the triage nurse that I had strepped throat and that I needed a prescription. I was told to sit down, that a doctor would be with me soon. "Soon", of course, implies a geological time frame, with things there happening about as fast as continental drift.

    So, I sat in the waiting room, one of three people there; a little kid with a sprained finger (and his mother, but she didn't count), a guy with a small gash to his face, and me.

    At ten o'clock, a homeless guy shuffled in, spoke with the nurse, and then, of course, sat down beside me. There were about fifty seats free, but he had to sit beside me. I love derelicts. They always harass me. I hope they all freeze to death.

    The derelict proceeded to try to make small talk with me, and I really wasn't interested in having anything to do with him. He stank. He was gross. And I did find out that he was in there because he had tried to shoot up his heroin with a bent needle. The needle had broken off in his arm. That had been three days ago.

    After an unbearable hour of moving from seat to seat and having this guy follow me and keep talking to me, he was called in. Ten o'clock.

    I was called in at midnight, into the same examining room as the derelict had been in. His stench was still there. The doctor made me open my mouth, took a look, told me it looked like I had strepped throat (which I had told the triage nurse) and wrote me a prescription for Keflex 150mg (I'd suggested Keflex 200mg). Five minutes in the examining room, preceeded by a three hour wait with unsavory characters.

    This, I'd suggest to you, is a good example of why socialized medicine doesn't work. I'd like to think that I'm worth more to Canadian society than a homeless person who shoots up smack with damaged syringes. But apparently, I'm not. I'd like to think that, in a weakened state, I wouldn't have to be harassed by the homeless people this country (and in particular, the City of Toronto) panders to.

    I'd like to think that because I work hard and have useful skills, I'd be treated better than those who don't. If working hard doesn't offer me any benefits, why bother doing so?

    I don't feel it's right that medical coverage isn't provided as a basic right to all Americans, especially the working poor. But I do feel that as part of my reward for being a contributing member of society, I should also have some sort of priority - better hospitals, better service, freedom from harassment in the waiting rooms.

    The Canadian health care system is one extreme; the American health care system is the other. What is needed is a happy medium.

  • Hell, you pay taxes so that everyone can drive on good roads and go to school, right?
    What's wrong with extending that to health care, supporting the needlessly unemployed etc.


    Even better, let's divide the wealth of the country equally among all of its citizens. That sounds like a great idea, too, doesn't it? Everybody enjoys the fruits of the country's successes.

    It's great on paper.

    Problem is, it doesn't take into account a pair of fundamental flaws with human nature. People are lazy, and people will take advantage of the system when they can.

    The system is called communism. And when you know that you're going to get your 50 rubles a week depending on whether you actually go to work or not, what's the point in going to work?

    Similarily, what's the point in saving up in case you find yourself unemployed or (gasp!) fired for never showing up at work on time, if you know the government will take care of you?

    The best never see any rewards for their efforts, and consequently won't try as hard. The worst never see any punishment for their uselessness, and therefore never have an incentive to work harder. The net effect is that the country's gross domestic product drops, its international value decays, and the society will fall into recession and poverty.

    Look at where Russia is. Look at the mess of the former Soviet countries. Look at the quality of life of the average Chinese person.

    Why is this such a difficult concept for people who espouse socialism to understand?

    Canada is a socialist country; socialism and communism are kissing cousins. And since Canada embarked on its path to socialism, its economy hasn't grown at the same rate as our big brother to the south. It hasn't prospered. It's full of trade unions jacking up labor rates so that City of Toronto parking attendants make $21/hr, which is more than I make with my substantial computer skills.

    I hate living in Canada. Until things change here, Canada will continue to go downhill.

    I'm a 26 year old Canadian, and on the wall in my bedroom is an American flag. It's a long story, but it was given to me by the US Ambassador to Canada when Clinton visited Ottawa (Canada's capital) in 1994, and I worked on the visit. But the flag is there, hanging on my wall, reminding me where I want to be, and what it is that I'm working for.

    I'm working for freedom from the oppression of high taxes, the stifling regime of a government that rewards those who don't plan ahead.

    I work my ass off, not for financial reward and the comfort they will buy me (because in Canada, it's nearly futile, and the rich are generally looked down on). I work my ass off so that I can move to the United States, become and American citizen, and carry the responsibility and rewards of being an American.

    Like many skilled young Canadians today, that's my driving goal.

  • The following is all absolutely true, especially about the quality of Canadian medical care. The information was relayed concisely and responsibly by an individual who took the time to speak his piece carefully.

    I happen to live in Canada, and I happen to agree with him, which is why I question the motivation behind this post having been moderated to "flamebait". It clearly isn't flamebait, though the moderator who did it disagreed with what was said.

    When I get moderator access, I don't moderate down stuff I disagree with. I only moderate up or down the posting based on the *quality* of the post, not whether or not I agree with it.

    Censoring ideas that don't agree with those of the prevailing forces are sure signs of socialist and communist thinking.

    Because it's not how human beings operate. If people would stop being selfish a**holes we wouldn't need capitalism. At least capitalism rewards innovation[sic] and hard work. Socialism breeds laziness, it is a proven fact. Until we grow up, capitalism is the best way for us ALL to make something good out of our lives. I would rather die than be cornered into a way of life by the government.
    And about Canada's healthcare system: Have you checked out the value of the Canadian dollar yet? Sheesh, it sucks. 15% or more in sales tax?? And they have very poor healthcare because people who want to be doctors want to make money, so the good doctors leave CDA for the US, leaving the hacks to take care of the homeland.
  • OK, maybe he isn't a total socialist, maybe he is just 99.9 percent socialist. I liked the Corvair.

    I agree. Just because a few people were stupid and took corners too fast for a rear-engine car, that's no reason to kill the car.

    However, that stupid 90-degree fanbelt arrangement was pretty bad. I've never seen a fanbelt in one of those last longer than 2,500 miles.


  • Given that Rob himself says "I'm abusing Slashdot", I think complaints that Rob is abusing Slashdot are inherently credible and reasonable. After all, if the site's creator thinks it's an abuse of his creation....

    Or are Republicans simply not allowed to exercise free speech? It's not like we're trying to shut down Slashdot, we're just saying our opinion. Or do you think people should be prohibited from protesting other peoples' statements? Or that only the right people should be allowed to protest?

    Steven E. Ehrbar
  • Another thing: to claim that he is somehow abusing his position by throwing his slant into the headlines is nonsense.

    Interesting. CmdrTaco himself says that he's abusing Slashdot, so obviously CmdrTaco is talking nonsense....

    Steven E. Ehrbar
  • In Canada, we're all in this together, and we succeed or fail together.

    That's called "communism". And while it's the prevailing Canadian attitude, I'll continue to work my ass off to get out of this country.

    And while skilled and talented people leave Canada for greener pastures in the United States, Canada's place in the world will continue to decay and decline as did Russia's, and East Germany's, and Poland's, and Czechoslovakia's and...

    BTW, speaking as a 26-year-old Canadian, once I'm gone, I'm gone. I'm not going to upset my life and risk everything to move back to a country that has such an inertia toward a Marxist ideal that has been proven impractical if not impossible in country after country.

    And one poor person dying on the streets is far too many.

    I'd call that Darwin's theory at work. In developed counties, the poor are usually that because they're stupid or they consistently make bad decisions (same thing), they're lazy or they're addicted. If you want to get out of poverty badly enough, you can. Oprah Winfrey and Ross Perot are great American examples of this. Anthony Hopkins grew up in abject poverty in a coal-mining town in Wales (United Kingdom). And Jim Carrey grew up in a shack in Scarborough (Toronto, Canada). All of these people proved that poverty can be beaten. Those who don't beat it apparently don't care to. Screw 'em; if they don't want to help themselves, why should I have to?

    Canada is so bent on trying to help everyone that I should be able to file a paper somewhere in Ottawa and get a government grant to pay for the costs of the immigration lawyer who will get me into the USA. (In all seriousness, I'm going to call my legal counsel and ask him to look into that for me. Once he's done laughing, if there's a way to do it, I assure you that he will.)

    Shed no tears for the Canadian in me on the day that I stand before the judge and recite the Pledge of Allegiance.

  • But first, I have a couple hundred karma to troll away...

  • Canadian doctors are probably leaving for the U.S. I'll give you that. But you haven't proved that this affects the Canadian health care system
    Net loss in doctors every year...health care depends on doctors...you figure it out.

    Not to mention that the Canadian government provides thousands of dollars to the education of each and every one of those med students who eventually graduates and flies the coop.

    I can't say that I blame them, either. If I were interested in a career as a physician, you can bet your ass that I'd get my schooling in Canada and my career in the United States.

  • So if I complain about conditions in prisons and the fact that we have more non-violent drug offenders in prison than we have violent offenders (who can get parole easier than the typical seller of a few joints!), I am a "trouble maker"?

    In an era where the voice of many is not being heard, some people go to extraordinary means in order to be heard. Your solution to this problem (voices not being heard) is to throw said voices into jail?

    But then again, this is nothing new. Labor activists of the 1930's had worse problems, between the American Legion serving as America's own equivalent of the "brown shirts" to break up "lefty" protests, and rampant "red baiting" of union organisers. Reading some of the archives from the 30's and 40's, I get a sense of deja vu... the mainstream press of the day was "oh, everything's fine, nothing's happening, just a few protesters arrested for disorderly conduct, that's all", while the lefty press was complaining that their people were being jailed left and right without due process of law, beaten by American Legionnaires under the approving eyes of the local constabulary for being "anti-American", etc. The more things change, the more they don't.


  • Interesting pointer to that suspected carjacker in Philly who was accused of having a gun and said accusation used as an excuse to beat the shit out of him. I read in the paper today where they found out that the cop shot in the thumb was actually shot by one of his fellow police officers, not by the suspected carjacker, who, it now seems likely, never did have a gun.

    The Philly police are probably the most unprofessional major city police force in the country. Police work is a hard job. It requires a lot of training and a lot of professionalism to do well, and, most importantly, requires LEADERSHIP. IT is obvious that the Philly police force is lacking in training and in professional leadership. My own personal suggestion to residents of Philidelphia is that they start at the top -- fire the police chief and his top lieutenants, and re-stock with top staff from a city where community policing is an everyday occurance rather than a merely-mouthed buzzword.


  • Original quote in bold; content adjusted by BigBlockMopar in plain text.

    ...We'd be glad to have you as long as you pay fifty percent of your income to the government

    There are lots of high tech jobs open because Canadians are constantly moving south for better paying, lower taxed opportunity in a land of real freedom

    particularly in telecommunications which is important because in January you can't go outside without freezing your testicles off, so you need a good telephone - in fact, the government even subsidizes Northern Telecom to the tune of $100,000,000+ a year

    we have a decent health care system as long as you don't get sick, because all the MRI machines are in Buffalo, NY

    few homeless, since the cardboard boxes all over Toronto are assessed property taxes

    over half the fresh water in the world but it's in glaciers 2 miles thick, above the arctic circle, where intelligent people don't go voluntarily (too damned cold and desolate, I've been there).

    damned good immigrant and local food you can have poutine, beaver tails and Chinese snake soup in the same Toronto restaurant. Yummy.

    culture and festivals especially Caribana, which has had at least one murder a year for the past 5 years

    and are ranked best country to live in for the seventh straight year in a row by the U.N. whose representatives obviously don't consider it a little divisive that you can take the Canadian citizenship test in 27 different languages.

    Cape Breton Island has the best fiddle players in the Americas

    Wow. That just reminds me how proud I am to be Canadian. Oh, boy. What about Rita McNeil's tea-room in Nova Scotia?

  • I mean, I was following you and agreeing with you until THAT: "and this is exactly the kind of thing that went on in Germany in the 20s & 30s, and disturbingly more and more of it is going on in America today"

    Needless to say, Godwin, you lose, and no kidding, if you actually KNEW something about history you would avoid making that kind of ridiculous statement.

  • Let's see, what's Bush's record in Texas?

    Molly Ivins has a nice book on the subject: "Shrub: The short but happy political life of George W. Bush". It appears that "Shrub" ("He ain't big enough to be a full-blown bush") has done the following for Texas:

    1. Given big polluters carte-blanche to continue their pollutin' ways, by extending a "grandfather" period that allows older factories to continue to output more pollutants than otherwise allowed by law. The "grandfather" period was originally intended to be 10 years, but now it's close to 20 years after the Texas clean air law was passed, and these factories are still being "grandfathered" today, despite having little of the same equipment that they had 20 years ago.

      In response to American companies being sued by residents of the shanty towns near the border because dozens of babies were being born without brains or with other heinous birth defects due to lack of enforcement of environmental laws, Bush pushed for a "tort reform" law making it harder to sue for environmental crimes. You can no longer sue a group of polluters as a class action, you must sue them one at a time individually, and must prove that your baby was born without a brain because of that particular factory's mercury dumping (for example). The net effect was to give criminals, murderers who have killed dozens of innocent children in South Texas, immunity from the law. But that's okay, they have money and the residents of the shanty towns don't. In George W. Bush's universe, if you don't have money, you don't count.

      In order to avoid having to report on environmental problems in Texas, Bush basically oversaw the reassignment of all state water quality inspectors to other duties. Texas now relies upon industries to "voluntarily" test their water and "voluntarily" tell the state when the water quality standards are exceeded. In other words, Bush has allowed the fox to police the henhouse.

      When a big political contributor's funeral home chain was cited by the state funeral home board for shoddy embalming, Bush spearheaded the charge to fire the head of the state funeral home board, and eventually managed to get the state funeral home board largely eliminated from the budget (meaning that it exists on paper, but no longer has any inspectors or etc. to enforce the laws that are on the books).

      Etc. etc. etc. About the only thing that Bush has constantly done well on is education, and that's probably because his wife would bitch-slap him if he didn't do right by her colleagues (she is a former teacher).

      Bush has filtered billions in state investments into funds operated by his biggest campaign contributors, as well as steered most big state contracts to his biggest contributors. You thought it was bad that Clinton had the White House for rent for campaign funds.... Bush basically plundered the whole state of Texas, not just abused his official residence!

      I am from Louisiana, right next door. We have our own crop of corrupt and colorful politicians. It was quite entertaining for us, though, to find a Texas electing a politician who was even more corrupt than our own Edwin "Honest Eddie" Edwards. As the years passed, we could only shake our heads and say "Man, and I thought Honest Eddie was corrupt!". But then, Honest Eddie used his powers to enrich his personal friends, most of whom were not "movers and shakers", while George W. used his powers to enrich the biggest businessmen in Texas. When corruption is in service to corporations, that's not corruption, that's just Texas, where "the bidness of guvmen't is bidness" and to hell with the taxpayer.

      Now Bush's corrupt cronies want to elect him President of the United States to bring that corruption to the national scale. Sorry, I'm not interested.


  • Nobody expects perfection. Not from the doctors and not from the police. Just like every doctor who makes a mistake should not have their license removed not every cop who makes a mistake should be fired. Not being perfect does not absolve you of your responsibilitites though. Just like the doctor has to face a suit and higher insurance rates the cop who made a mistake has to pay for it. Either by being sued or being reprimanded by the dept.
    If a protester actually assaulted a police officer they will most likely suffer horribly. The penalties for assaulting police officers are much higher then assaulting "ordinary" people. I am not even asking that the police who assaulted people pay the same penalty as the people who assault the police but they should suffer the same consequence as any other "ordinary" assault.
    I don't know where you are getting this "You are not willing to pay for" crap. I pay my taxes. I pay too much taxes just like everybody else in this country.

    A Dick and a Bush .. You know somebody's gonna get screwed.

  • You must have misread the article. 1600 new doctors a year -500 doctors to the U.S. is not a net loss of doctors. It is, in fact a net gain of roughly 1100 doctors a year.
    Mike Mangino
    Sr. Software Engineer, SubmitOrder.com
  • In case you're under 30, I'll remind you that the European (and American) left once parroted the same ball of #$@! about Reagan and Thatcher. Don't you waste any time thanking them for ending the threat of a Soviet invasion of Europe, okay?

    How, praytell? By selling the Soviets the gigantic confidence trick that was SDI? I still can't believe that the Russians fell for it. Then again, the only reason it ever worked is that Reagan was stupid enough to believe his own propaganda . . .

    As for Russai and China, I am perfectly happy voting for a candidate who will simultaneously piss two of the most corrupt and tyrannical nations on the face of the Earth.

    I'm no fan of Russia and China, but spending sixty billion dollars on a missile defence system that *will not work*, is totally ineffective against the one nuclear attack that anyone is likely to try against the US (a smuggled weapon), and is going to piss off two of the world's biggest countries - they're not going to go away, remember - sounds pretty damn silly to me.

  • Why is there so many gun freaks on slashdot ... I mean you CAN'T all be trolls. Gun freaks are scary. Glad I don't meet any of you IRL.
  • Nobody expects perfection
    Yet you obviously do.

    Just like the doctor has to face a suit and higher insurance rates the cop who made a mistake has to pay for it. Either by being sued or being reprimanded by the dept.
    Um, many excellent doctors with flawless records have to pay high malpractice insurance rates, it is no laughing matter. The problem is, much like with cops, that people want to take the easy way out. Just as there are people out there who only want to sue doctors to make money, there are people out there who want to do the same with cops. Yet other patients are theoretically honest, and when they get hurt, lawsuits happen; it _has_ to be someone's fault, because that's just the way our litigous society works. I support punishment where it makes sense, but this system is all too often wrong, and puts the costs where they are least needed.

    If a protester actually assaulted a police officer they will most likely suffer horribly.
    Oh you mean like those protestors who spat on the officers? Sorry, but they haven't paid and the city isn't about to take them to court either. It doesn't make much sense. Yet you know damn well if the cop were to do the same thing, even in retaliation, that you and other individuals would be all over them like white on rice.

    I am not even asking that the police who assaulted people pay the same penalty as the people who assault the police but they should suffer the same consequence as any other "ordinary" assault.
    Well no, you're not really. The police aren't just anyone. Sometimes when they use force, it is in the best interest of society. Sometimes accidents will happen when this force is applied, no matter how well trained these officers are. It makes little sense to hold either the individual officer or the police force responsible to an impossible standard (i.e., No amount of training will entirely prevent all types of accidents). Likewise, it makes little sense to hold the police responsible to an elite standard, when the tax payer (including yourself, who pays "too much") is not willing to foot the bill.

    In essence, my position is this: We needed the police there to prevent even more injuries, even though we could only expect some injuries on the part of the police. You seem to say: "Well there were injuries, and those are necessarily wrong and unacceptable. The fault must lie on the part of the police, they must 'pay'." I say these injuries are to be expected, and until I see evidence to the contrary (especially when I personally witnessed excellent policework) I hold them free of any personal responsibility. The police are a tool for society. Do we hold the tool responsible for misapplication, especially when we know it may weaken the tool? No, only where they fail to execute as can be reasonably expected.

  • 100 - 26 = 74, quite a bit more than half....
  • Between the two of them, I'd have to vote for Harry Browne.

    I saw this guy on the PBS Newshour, and, sorry, this guy is a loon. I can't believe anyone would claim with a straight face that America's defence needs can be met with border guards and a BMD system. Even ignoring the feasibility of BMD, try seeing what happens when the Middle East decides to cut off the US's oil and the US is totally impotent to do anything about it.

  • At the WTO, there was a huge amount of damage done to property

    That sure is some great justification for the physical harm done.

    One broken window => one broken arm

    One sprayed wall => pepper gas sprayed in the eyes

    Cool! Welcome back to the Middle Age (or worse)

  • After all these years, the Left still hates to admit that the conservatives not only won, but that they were on the right side all along.

    Better to give too much credit to a man who did something, than to pretend the challenge never existed. By your argument, Gandhi just happened to come along and give a few good speeches when the British were ready to leave India anyway.


  • Actually PDFA stopped taking donations from tobacco and alcohol companies a few years ago, after coming under pressure for it.

    IIRC they're now financed heavily by the president's commission on drugs, headed by Drug Czar Barry McCaffrey or whatever his name is.

    But you're right about the economics of it. If pot were legal, alcohol users would be switching left and right.

  • by pheonix ( 14223 ) <slashdot AT ibloviate DOT org> on Sunday August 06, 2000 @01:03PM (#875892) Homepage
    It appears that some of you just don't get it.

    Slashdot is not a news source. Slashdot compiles a bunch of links to stories that are of interest to the community that visits here. It doesn't, as a rule, have more than a few sentences about what the link points to. How is that reporting?

    The entire point of this place is discussion. A huge ball of geeks spouting their opinions and having some level of intelligent discussion. Why should CT be exempt from that? He created the damn thing, I'd think he could lob his opinion out with the rest of you, eh?

    For a group of "geeks" or "elite linux gurus" and generally "smart guys", you are either a load of hypocrites or lack any form of common sense. If you were told to withold your opinion in these discussions from now on, you'd rant and rave for days. When CT volunteers his, you cry like children. This place has never professed to be a geek-inhabited bastion of journalism. It's a crew of opinionated nerds...get used to it.

    Interestingly enough, the above is my opinion and doesn't reflect those of /. staff in general. Of course, since I'm NOT /. staff, I'm allowed my opinion, lucky me.
  • by ahg ( 134088 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:09AM (#875988)
    As a Philadelphian I was vrey pleased with the actions my city and its police dept took during the past week.

    "Freedom of Speach" isn't an absolute right; you can be sued for libel, and of course you can't shout the proverbial "fire in the theatre". Similiarly, I think most Americans would argee that the right to assembly does not give you the right to hold hostage a million people by shutting down access routes out of downtown Philadelphia (center city as we call it here), as some protestors did attempt to.

    I think the authorities were more than generous in allowing protestors who had intentionally not applied for a permit (to show their so called dissidence) but were willing reasonable enough and could be negotiated with, - to march down a 4 mile stretch of one of the busiest Philly streets, Broad st. They also received full Police protection from traffic that was not expecting to find the street closed.

    Most of the protestors who were arrested were not part of an organization with a noble cause. As admitted by several in TV interviews they were there for the sole purpose of disrupting "the event". These scoundrels who would assert that they have a right to block major intersections by overturning dumpsters in the street deserve to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law and have clearly overstepped any constitutionally protected rights.

    American kids today have a got a lot to learn about political dissidence. Some of the best examples can be seen abroad. Take Natal Sheransnky, a Russian Jew who during the 70s hijacked a plane to bring attention to the plight of Soviet Jewery. He rotted in Jail for about 10 years, but he became a martyr and it benefitted his cause. - and if you think US jails are bad...

    My point being, that if you plan on breaking the law to bring attention to your cause (or lack of one) then you must be willing to pay the price - be a martyr. The kids in jail here are a bunch of whining babies. They think that they should be allowed to get away with vandalizing property, assaulting police, and other offenses because they were "protesting"? Boohoo, in Philly we actually enforce our laws.

  • by pschmied ( 5648 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:49AM (#876010) Homepage
    People should really read about the protesters and what they stand for. Most (I would go as far as to say all, but there are always a few exceptions) of these people are very concerned citizens who are worried about the current state of our democracy. Common Dreams [commondreams.org] seems to have some pretty good coverage of the civil rights trampling that was done.

    There are a number of instances where organizers were singled out and arrested in a preemptive manner. This is probably why the staff member from 2600 was arrested. You see, the organizers all carry the Nextel phones, because they are cheap and can conference call. Read a number of instances where people were arrested, not read any rights, detained for longer than legal times, not told what they were being charged with, (and here is the shocker) because they happened to be walking by with a Nextel phone.

    Do the protesters have valid concerns? Yes, I think so. In Philidelphia, it appears you can walk on civil rights, and get away with it with out so much as a mention from the mainstream media. My favorite site has been Tom Tommorrow's photo shoot [freespeech.org] of the Republican convention (Tom Tommorrow draws This Modern World [thismodernworld.com].) The highlight in my mind is the part where you have a picture of Sam Donaldson sitting bored complaining about the lack of news, while protesters flooded the streets outside.

    Over the past 10 years the Democrats have moved vastly to the right, and the Republicans have moved to the left. What we have right now are two parties that quibble over minor details while agreeing on the big ones. It truely has become a monoparty system. The term "Republicrat" is popping up more and more.

    Bill Mahr put it best on his show, Politically Incorrect, "We already have compassionate conservatives. They're called Democrats." This is very true. There really is no voice for the progressive these days--or so the media would have us believe. The fact is, that Ralph Nader [votenader.org] is a liberal progressive--and a damn smart person. He is the reason we have some semblance of auto safety standards. He graduated magna cum laude from Princeton in 1955, and from Harvard Law School in 1958. Since then he has tirelessly devoted his life to public service. The guy makes over $300,000/yr and lives off of $25,000--because he gives the rest to civic projects.

    More importantly, the guy is way ahead of all the other third party candidates, is on the ballot in 30 states already (including Montana :-) Thank you Mr. Wachs and co.) with more to come, and he has eight percent popularity. If enough people vote for him, the Green Party (I was a staunch Democrat before I found the Greens) will become a "recognized" political party.

    But, the media has chosen to ignore him.

    So rather than throw my vote away by voting for one of the major parties, I'm going to do something this year. I'm going to do my part to get the Green Party recognized so that the Democrats can never again say,"You have to vote for us, we're not Newt Gingrich's party."


    Voting for the "least worst choice" is still going downhill. Make your vote actually count. Vote Nader [votenader.org]

  • I know the malignant carbon rod has merits... but what about the "inanimate carbon rod" from the Simpsons (in the "Homer in Space" episode), that made the cover of Time Magazine, and had its own parade.

    Now that's a carbon rod I would vote for!

  • by Joe Solbrig ( 182124 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:20AM (#876033)

    Your thinking is quite logical. The only flaw is that it is not true.

    In Seattle, the demonstrators who faced the greatest police violence were the pacifists. The morning of the protest, the police attempted a street clearing by tear-gasing and pepper-spraying at random. This was not successful. It was only in the afternoon that anarchist "black bloc" members and local youth wound-up rampaging behind the pacifist lines.

    Whether the cops could have stopped the anarchists or not isn't very relevant. They weren't trying too hard. The pacifists were in fact extremely upset at this.

    If you READ the 2600 article, you will notice that the staff member was arrest while walking do the street talking on a cell-phone. And that this had come from a very specific effort to target people who had said things the police didn't like.

    We're talking overt political repression, you think?

    So, two parts to a good theory - true premises and correct deduction. You fall down on the true premises side.

  • by avdp ( 22065 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:49AM (#876034)
    please... the philly police did nothing wrong.

    (I live 30 mins north of philly, so thanks to local news, we got a bit more information regarding what happened than most of you)

    I don't think that the Philly police did anything wrong at all during the convention. If anything, they deserve a lot of credit for how they handled all this. The local police did A LOT of research (including flying up to Seattle during the riots) and lots and lots of training for weeks before the convention.

    The so-called peaceful protesters were really not so peaceful. The police (thanks to tips from the secret services) found all kinds of stuff, ranging from explosives, to lethal spiders, snakes, etc that the protesters were planning to release in the crowds. Not to mantion protesters were tying piano wire across roadways to try to trip horses (and potentially injure them). The list of outrageous things they did goes on and on.

    As far as the prison bad treatment, well, it seems that again, it was the police that was abused. Apparently, the so called peaceful protesters were throwing feces and urine at the guards/cops - while chanting and screaming all night long. No offense, but with that kind of behavior, bot only do they not deserve any kind of civilized treatment, but they deserve to be in lockup for the rest of their stays in that prison. That being said, they were fed, INCLUDING those with special diet requirement like lactose intolerance (they received peanut butter sandwich instead of cheese sandwich).

    Lastly, I sincerely doubt that this guy was in fact walking down the street with his cell phone - but if it is in fact the case, I'd like to think that it is an isolated incident/mistake for which the cops should apologize. There were tons of actually peaceful protests all around the city, and none of them were brutalized or anything, although the Philly police did keep an eye on all of these protests.

    All in all the Philly police did a great job, and reacted VERY WELL under extreme pressure.

    As far as the remarks about GW Bush, well, as an H1B worker, the american politics don't interest me a whole lot but I will say this: the alternative doesn't seem a whole lot better (if at all better).

    PS: I am from Belgium, you should see the kind of crowd control we use when we have violent protesters (which we do a lot since Brussels is the headquarters of NATO and EU) - the tactics used by the Philly police is relatively mild compared to what we do.
  • by jball ( 79579 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:49AM (#876036) Homepage
    Vote Bush for war and economic despair:
    Are the views Bush supports really his own? Can anyone truly feel right voting for a leader that was brought up in a wealthy environment lacking all discipline and responsibility? Is he a leader and universal role model or a self-indulgent, spoiled playboy riding on the coattails of his father?

    Vote Gore to stay the same:
    Gore is a diligent and intelligent man with a great amount of political experience. Very comfortable with his political position, any new or significant changes are doubtful.

    Vote Nader if you actually give a shit:
    Nader is a self made man who has taken a personal initiative to make changes that will benefit others. Take a look at his web site and his up front and blunt views. www.votenader.com [votenader.com] Make a difference.

    The Media and Big Business:
    The mainstream media would never present this story to the American public. A much larger and more powerful CORPORATION owns every media business. Corporations love Republicans because they cater to tax cuts and the rich. Decisions made for the general public are not those produced by the greedy but by those who have the moral strength to think of another's well being before that of their own.

    Big Brother is not the government. Big Brother = Big Business

  • by Black Parrot ( 19622 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:22AM (#876043)
    a) Slashdot is not a news source. Slashdot is a playground for geeks (and various other uninvited guests).

    b) I happened to follow a link to www.time.com, which does pretend to be a 'straight' news site, and the article headlines are so biased that at first I thought I had found the page of the RNC. Do we expect /. to be less biased?

    c) Though I probably would have (tried to) pretend more impartiality than CT did, I'm really glad an overt political post came up on /.. Filter out the trolls and the people with hair-trigger flamethrowers, and the remaining posters here tend to be both well-informed and incisive in their views. I expect to learn a lot from the responses from this article. Even from people who are going to vote the other way. I suspect I will go into my voting booth as a better-informed voter for having read this.

    At the very least, this will be more interesting than the drivel the mainstream media gave us last week, and will continue to give us for the next three months. I wish /. would open a /box for political topics throughout this period.

  • My personal favorite line was:

    Of course there were extremists who deserved it, but a lot of folks were protesting peacefully Yeah, Rob, really fucking bright - if you dare express your opinion, you clearly deserve to have your skull bashed in, get sprayed with pepper spray, and then tossed in a cell with 100 other people (standing room only) for 72 hours with no food, little water, and all your rights stripped away from you. Do you even know who was tossed in jail? Do you honestly BELIEVE the garbage you see on ABC (owned by Disney, a major contributor to the RNC) or any of the other networks? They arrested over 450 people - very very few of whom were "violent". Most were practicing non-violent civil disobedience, the sort of stuff Ghandi used. People laying down in the middle of the street is not violent, and does not deserve the usage of pepper spray - but it was done. People who want delegates to be able to see them and know that they do not like what they stand for don't deserve to be arrested for 'criminal tresspass' on a public street - but it was done.

    I know this is basically the wrong forum, and I really do not give a rat's ass if my karma is dropped (it's high enough already, thankyouverymuch), but for fuck's sake - does anyone in this world every really think things through anymore?
    Matt Singerman
  • by MO! ( 13886 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:53AM (#876053) Homepage
    Where in the US Constitution does it state that a citizen needs to obtain a permit to protest? I have a right to protest in any manner as long as I don't impede the rights of others. Blocking an intersection may cause an inconvience for motorists, but it does NOT impede their constitutional rights. Last time I check, there was no ammendment regarding a "right to drive down Main street".

    Also, as has been reported - individuals were arrested NOT for protesting, but for merely carrying a specific brand cell phone! THAT is not a crime (although using some manufacturer's {MS} products should be)!
  • by Claudius ( 32768 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:56AM (#876058)
    I can't see the difference between how China is treating members of the Falun Gong and what's happening in Philadelphia (and what did happen) in Seattle.

    Agreed. Both the U.S. and China understand quite well that demonstrations and the appearance of chaos and civil unrest are bad for business. I've talked with Chinese who were in support of the Chinese government's handling of the Tiananmen Square incident--at that time, some ten years ago, China's economy was taking off due to investment from the West. Many corporate eyes were trained on China to see how they would handle the protests. When they saw that they would happily call in the military to quell an otherwise peaceful demonstration, it was clear that it was much safer to invest in China than, say, Russia. And honestly, how could the U.S. in good conscience disagree with their actions after the Kent State murders?

    Heavy-handed police tactics are nothing new in the U.S. We sent state militias out to help Pinkerton break strikes at Carnegie Steel, we sent Patton and his cavalry to charge and tear gas the Bonus Army and chase them off D.C. soil, we firehosed Dr. King and his companions in the name of "segregation today, segregation tomorrow." In each case the government, a pawn of the "haves," abused its power over the "have nots" in the name of good business and preservation of the status quo. Why should we expect this precedent to change? And why should we expect China not to learn from our good example?

  • by Tarnar ( 20289 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:00AM (#876072) Homepage

    And once again, we meet that fine line in the sand. Lets look at WTO. There were days of peaceful protest. There were also groups who showed up, promising to cause a disruption and destroy property. So how are you expected to deal with the protests as a whole?

    Consider the situation in Philly. Much like the WTO, the opening days were peaceful. Very little confrontation between activist and policeman. As it should be. Then we consider the final day of protests, where the groups that advocated the destruction of public and private property came out to play. These are people, some of whom have been trained so that they can 'fight back' when the Police come to break them up.

    The Police HAVE to come break them up. You can't allow people to go around destroying property. These people then say they have to "defend themselves" from the Police. Then, you get the mob mentality. Other people join the violence because they can. And some of these people have the gall to say that they are in the right.

    Now, at the same time, you cannot argue whatsoever with the right to protest, the right to speak and be heard. But where do we draw the line in the sand? When it gets violent, should it be the fault of the Police? What if the Police overstep their bounds, refusing due process and basic human rights? There's a lot more here then just "Blame the Man, blame the Pigs" because some people are abusing everyone's right to protest by doing so violently.

    Anyway, that's my rant..
  • by bnenning ( 58349 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:58AM (#876073)
    "Legalizing alcohol will make it only easier for drunkards to sell their booze on our streets, and to children". Obviously, this is not the case. Coors and Budweiser do not engage in turf wars with Uzis, and they don't send pushers into schools to recruit customers. They have a legal marketplace in which to exist, and engaging in urban warfare is not good for profits. And I'm pretty sure alcohol is still the most popular "date rape" drug. (Of course, rape would be illegal in a libertarian world. And since there would be more room in prisons once nonviolent drug offenders were released, rapists would actually serve their full sentence.)

    I don't know what you're talking about in terms of libertarians and religion. The ACLU is most definitely not a libertarian organization, as witnessed by (among many other things) their hostility toward any privatization of the school system, such as vouchers which would allow parents to choose religious or secular private schools. Libertarians view religion as independent of government; it should be neither promoted nor disparaged, just like the 1st Amendment says.

  • by mutzinator ( 156030 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:01AM (#876084)
    Now, I am really not trying to be a troll when I say this, but:

    SHUT UP!

    This website is not a news website. Slashdot *is* opinions.

    When was the last time Slashdot broke the story on anything? How many reporters work for slashdot?

    This website consists of finding news elsewhere and exchanging views on the issue. CmdrTaco should not be exempt from these discussions.

    Another thing: to claim that he is somehow abusing his position by throwing his slant into the headlines is nonsense. Microsoft stories have carried the Borg Bill logo as long as I have been a reader, blatantly throwing the Slashdot staff's views into the mix. This is an OPINION website and this exactly the sort of expression I'd like to see here.
  • by sansbury ( 97480 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:01AM (#876090)
    But I for one, would think much more highly of you if:
    • You said something more insightful than "he is a carbon rod," which is simple ad hominem
    • You wrote it as part of an editorial where you actually lay out an argument, as opposed to peanut gallery remarks
    • You carried some remarks speaking for "the other side"
    • Or even did an "Ask Slashdot" where the questions were submitted to both GWB and Al Gore.

    Like I said, it's your press, print what you want. "Abusing Slashdot" will only do more to convince many of us that Slashdot speaks primarily for the far-left wing of the "geek" population.


  • by seizer ( 16950 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:12AM (#876112) Homepage
    As we all know from the Mitnick case, a hacker can initiate nuclear strikes just by whistling down a telephone line. I mean, that's just fact, isn't it? I think the police were very prudent in arresting him before he had time to launch.

    --Remove SPAM from my address to mail me
  • While I agree with you about Bush, I can't help but feel that there's something wrong with this...

    Hey, man, it's his website :-)
  • by wanna ( 110872 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:04AM (#876130)
    Bravo Dr S.!

    When a new toy appears and /. authors comment "Cool Toy" "Gotta have one". We all race to the latest link and check it out.

    News Flash! THAT IS OPINION, not NEWS!

    This is slashdot NOT ABC, NBC, CBS or FOX.

    I get plenty of OPINION from those sources 24/7 and frankly, the reason I read /. is to balance my daily/weekly force feeding of propaganda, and opinion from the above sources I know are totally non reflective of my interests, beliefs, interests or concerns.

    The only reason I 'DO' read the standard media is to keep aware of just exactly 'WHAT' those people are thinking and trying to feed the sheep that believe all that pap placed before them. I read Slashdot for the authors/editors and posters opinions of the latest issues because they inevitably include multiple links, insights, sources and prospective. Truth be known, Slashdot posters furnish the depth I utilize to judge an issue for myself.

    I don't code, I don't do hardware, and I'm not an industry insider so I count on /. to provide the facts and commentary on issues that matter to me. I was there in the 60's (And YES! I do remember them) I am old enough to feel strongly that the communication tool the net provides is the most valuable contribution to our times and there is no question in my mind that the national media is hardly what I would hold up to Slashdot or many other like sites as an example of 'ethical'.

    Just one more opinion, for what it is worth!

  • And once again, we meet that fine line in the sand. Lets look at WTO. There were days of peaceful protest. There were also groups who showed up, promising to cause a disruption and destroy property. So how are you expected to deal with the protests as a whole?

    I expect the police to enforce the law. In the 1980's, there were MANY protests which were largely non-violent, with a few violent people. The police dealt with most of them quite well. It's only now that "police riots" are happening repeatedly.

    So much for the lessons of the past. And so much for police professionalism. Ready, aim, lawsuit!

  • by David Price ( 1200 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @09:45AM (#876147)
    No, it does make a difference.

    The object of an election isn't to vote for the winner. That's silly and circuituous logic. The object of an election is to vote for the candidate who best fits your ideas about how government should work.

    Bush or Gore will win the 2000 election. That's a fact. But that doesn't mean that you shouldn't vote Libertarian, or Green, or whatever most closely meets your own beliefs. Keep in mind that, if even a few percent of the vote are for a third-party candidate, that candidate, his or her party, and the whole concept of a many-party system will gain legitimacy and clout in 2004, and in elections to come. That translates into real action by the winner of this year's election - remember, much of presidential politics works by 'mandate,' the idea that the President's political capital stems from the belief that his ideas parallel those of the public. It also translates into a real chance at third parties winning, if not the Presidency, then congressional seats and local offices. A few percent means tens of millions of people. It means power. It means change.

    Elections are a lot more complex than just which "white man in a suit" gets to live in the big white house for the next four years. They're the formal expression of the will of the people. Don't throw your vote away by voting for Bush or Gore if they don't really express the direction you'd like politics to move in.

  • by dirk ( 87083 ) <dirk@one.net> on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:15AM (#876156) Homepage
    This has to be one of the least useful things I've read on /. in a long time. A 2600 staffer gets arrested for something (they never do say what), bail is set at something they aren't sure of (and both guesses may be wrong), and he was walking down the street at the time of arrest (doing what? where was he walking? talking to whom?). So, in essense, some guy was arrested for possibly doing something and bail was set at something we're not sure of. Until there are a LOT more details, this story means basically nothing except a chance for Taco to get his views out to the /. crowd.
  • by xianzombie ( 123633 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:16AM (#876165)

    Don't take this the wrong way, but leagalizing drugs could be a good thing

    When you consider what a large portion of crime is a result of (drug trade, abuse, etc). The leagalization of certain drugs could put them under control, in ways similar to the whole alchohol prohibition.

    Disclaimer: I am not condoning nor condeming the use of drugs

  • Surprise, surprise people, all of the important acts of government which have pissed off the /. community have occurred while BC had the power to veto them or stop them. Let's take a look shall we:

    -export regs on encryption. BC thinks they're a good idea and wants them, the republicans think they should be abolished
    -CDA, bipartisan legislation; signed by BC
    -COPA and COPPA: signed by BC
    -Carnivore, supported by our attorney general and president
    -Gore wants to begin allowing net taxes soon, GW wants to wait and see before even discussing allowing them
    -DMCA, signed by BC. (yes I know it is orrin hatch's baby, but it had wide bipartisan support)

    So CmdrTaco, you really think that GW is going to be the worse candidate? Considering that Gore has backed BC all the way, everytime? That shows you what kind of person Gore is.
  • by cnicolai ( 14338 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:43AM (#876207)
    Looks like the cops' media strategy worked for you. They arrested _everyone_ at the protest headquarters _before_ any protests and confiscated banners, flyers, puppets, and costumes. With the peaceful folks' visible message stolen, only the violent minority got attention from national media.

    Besides, they ripped someone's ear off. They RIPPED SOMEONE'S EAR OFF! [phillyimc.org] Disfigurement is an extreme punishment for a misdemeanor.


  • Taxes were cut at one point during Reagan's term, and revenues WENT UP.

    And that's a common misfact too; I've heard it from other people. I wonder who the primary sources spreading it are; I can understand random conservatives wanting to repeat it without confirmation, but you'd think any author would check the numbers first.

    Check out the federal revenues and expenditures [polisci.com] for yourself. Revenues keep pace with (although behind) expenditures through the 70s, each growing by about 60 billion a year, until 1983, when expenditures went up by the usual 60 billion, but revenues dropped by 17 billion. There's your tax cut. Voila, the deficit nearly doubles that year.

    And if you really want to narrow down the blame, do some more research and check out where those expenditures were going during the 80s. Comparing the AFDC and military budgets is enlightening. According to the Cato people, federal expenditures on Health went up by .4% of the GDP between 1980 and 1983, just enough to cancel out the reduction on federal expenditures on "Education and Training". Social Security expenditures took up .6% of the GDP more, sure... but National Defense spending took up 1.1% of the GDP more, the biggest gain, and one pushed by Reagan.

    REMEMBER: The congress is the one that ultimately controls spending and taxes, not the president.

    That's a matter of opinion, and the word "ultimately" in there seems to point more towards the president, who gets to veto any budget he doesn't like after all. Sure, there's pressure on both sides to come to a compromise... but the last time we had a major failure to compromise, the Republican congress took a lot more heat for it than Clinton did.
  • by dkesh ( 23048 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:19AM (#876239)
    Others will mention it, but the SLASH-based site to go for news about the protests is philadelphia independent media center [phillyimc.org].
  • Two points:

    1) How do you expect police to respond? At the WTO, there was a huge amount of damage done to property. Police arrested people. Everyone complains. Lawsuits follow. In New York, Police keep the rioting after a parade contained to a park. No one is arrested. Everyone complains. Lawsuits follow. Simple: Do you want police protection or not? Not happy with your police? Join the police review board in your town. Become a cop. And thanks for bringing up the Falun Gong. Have protesters been killed in jail? Held over a year without charges? Get a grip. This is obviously two different situations.

    2) The 2600 story is bogus and misleading. What was shapeshifter charged with? Making gas bombs can be a misdemeanor. Stringing piano wire to injure horses is also one. So is striking a police officer, resisting arrest, peeing in the alley and a ton of other things. So what did this guy do? He was just walking down the street, talking on a phone. Ok. Right. Prisons are filled with the wrong people. Ask any prisoner! My father was a homicide cop for 20 years. He arrested people covered in blood standing over dead bodies holding knives who went to court saying they didn't do anything. If you want to tell the story, tell the whole thing. Remember, everyone, INCLUDING THE POLICE, are innocent until proven guilty. Less then .01% of the protesters in Philly were arrested. What did he do to draw attention? What happened near him that got him arrested while the guilty party went free. Mistakes can be made, but your story doesn't offer any kind of facts. Sloppy reporting like this is why the "New Media" get so little respect.

  • Ok, there's like 30-some odd comments right now (at a threshold of +1) and most of them seem to be bitching about how CmdrTaco shouldn't have used Slashdot for his political views.

    Why the hell not? He uses Slashdot for his views about software, why not politics? It's his website, after all, he can do whatever the hell he wants. Rather than bitching about it, just don't click on stories you don't want to read - less pageviews means he'll be less likely to post something like that in the future.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:25AM (#876294)
    Here's some more info [zmag.org] from Zmag [zmag.org] about the conditions the jailed in Philly are facing, and the abuse of civil rights, i.e., pepper spray on non-violent people, denying lawyer visits, excessive bail (as in the article, $500,000 for a misdemeanor?!)
  • by kevin805 ( 84623 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @08:30PM (#876301) Homepage
    I'd vote for an Inanimate Carbon Rod for president before I voted for Bush, too. I.C.R. wouldn't push for stupid laws. I.C.R. probably wouldn't get us into any stupid wars that don't concern us. I.C.R. wouldn't be a pawn of the teachers' unions. I.C.R. wouldn't send the BATF out after whatever group isn't popular this week.

    Sadly, I.C.R. isn't running. I'd prefer Bush as someone who will most likely fuck things up less than Gore, but I don't like either of them. I'd really like to see any of the third parties, on the grounds that no way in hell could Nadar, Buchanan, Browne or Hagelan do anything. To bad they aren't really an option either.

    I'll probably write in R.U. Sirius (The Revolution(tm)'s candidate). But I'll be hoping for Bush. Do you realize that there are supreme court judges who think that the federal government has authority to prosecute rape under the interstate commerce clause? Is rape bad? Yes. Is it the federal government's responsibility? Not by a long shot. Gore is more likely to appoint brain dead justices. Abortion is currently secure, so it isn't a reason to vote for Gore. Federalism is not, and is a good reason to vote for Bush.

    (It's odd -- I don't even like my own party's candidate, because he promised he wouldn't run again back in 96, and now he is.)
  • It's never "throwing away" one's vote to vote for the candidate you actually want to become President. Voting for the lesser of two evils is indeed throwing away the vote.

    Since both Bush and Gore are not worthy of this high office, I don't care who of them wins if and when I vote for my consumer rights hero, Ralph Nader. Ralph is the only candidate running who I can put my full faith and trust in. Of course, I don't agree with Ralph on every issue, but at least he and his party are not bought and paid for. Their positions on the issues are *their* positions on the issues.

    Go Nader go!

    Steve Magruder

  • by evilned ( 146392 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @07:27AM (#876332) Homepage
    In the US we have continually have some of the lowest voter turn outs in the world. Its no wonder that money controls both major parties. Do yourself a favor, dont vote for them, vote for someone else, while I dont like Nader, he does make a hell of a protest vote. I will probably vote for Harry Brown myself. But what ever you do, dont not vote. Dont succumb to the throwing your vote away bs. A protest vote is still a vote, and with enough protest votes, we can make either the major parties none existant, or force them to hear and cater to our voices. Please dont waste that vote.
  • No it is andovers' website. He just has editoral control

    Alright, fine. He has editorial control. So he's using his powers of editorial control to post an editorial about his views on a candidate.
  • Also, if you think Gore has economic sense, could you explain his defense of the fraudulent Ponzi scheme known as Social Security?

    For the same reason that GWB talks about wanting to "fix" or "save" Social Security, when you and I might want to hear the phrase "phase out" instead: because nobody who used the phrase "fraudulent Ponzi scheme" to describe Social Security would have a snowball's chance in Texas (or Hell, same diff) of being elected. They'd be a shoo-in for the Libertarian nomination, maybe, but that just furthers my point.

    Why the *%^# does a tax cut have to be "economically needed"?

    Because that's one of the ways we try and smooth out the boom/bust cycle of the economy. Every dollar of tax cuts that occurs during the current boom is just a dollar that will have to be made up during the next bust, when it will hurt much more.

    Keep in mind, "tax cuts" and "spending cuts" are two different things. Do you really think that if we mindlessly cut taxes, that Congress will cut spending to match? Didn't Reagan try that, and send the debt from 1 to 3 trillion or so during his term?

    It's our money, we earned it,

    Well, see, the problem is that it isn't your money. About $5 trillion of our past two decades' budgets came from the U.S. government's creditors (including uncounted bond-holding suckers), many of whom have business plans or retirement plans which depend on seeing that money again. And we now have a choice to make: we can pay them back now, and forgo tax cuts during an unbelievably healthy economy. We can keep borrowing now, and pay them back later, and hope that the economy will go from "unbelievably healthy" to "inconceivable juggernaut" to make our delay pay off. Or, we can default on the debt, and hope that we can bring an end to the Great Depression II without first going through World War III.

    how about the government showing that it's "economically needed" for taxes to be at the highest peacetime level in history?

    Look at the federal debt. Look at the budget surplus, which is higher than anyone expected and not certain to continue long. Estimate how long it would take for the latter to pay down the former to less preposterous levels. There's your proof of economic necessity.

    Now, I'm not saying that we shouldn't cut spending, and then cut taxes. But let's do those things in the right order this time?
  • Like I've seen on at least one Slashdotter's signature file:
    Cuthulu for president. Why vote the lesser evil?
  • by Andrew Cady ( 115471 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @10:25AM (#876378)
    I think you forgot your link. But here's one: fairvote.org [fairvote.org]. Also see Open Directory Project's listing on voting systems [dmoz.org] and the Voting Systems FAQ [demon.co.uk].
  • by Malcontent ( 40834 ) on Sunday August 06, 2000 @11:33AM (#876395)
    Police are given guns by the state. In exchange for that power they have a responsibility to act in a measured and acceptable way. If a policeman is unable to function within the parameters of his training and orders when taunted or insulted verbally they can not be trusted to do their jobs when under much more dangerous situations like an armed robber. Any policeman who lashes out at protesters is clearly incapable of handling low to medium stress conditions and should be taken off the force before they are exposed to high stress conditions.

    A Dick and a Bush .. You know somebody's gonna get screwed.

  • by FallLine ( 12211 ) on Monday August 07, 2000 @05:11AM (#876432)
    Frankly, I don't have any particular loyalty to the Philadelphia police. I am a transplant, and I technically live outside of Philadelphia. However, I am pragmatic. I realize that their job is important and necessary. From my own eyes, the ACLU's, and the media's, I neither saw or heard anything wrong in the way in which the Philadelphia police handled themselves. There may, or may not, have been a few excesses on the part of individual officers, but this does not mean they should be sidelined. This does not mean they should even be reprimanded as a group. What is the point? If you accept that there is little they could have done, what purpose does attacking the police serve, other than to scare away good officers? The dangers and the costs of on an unregulated mob far exceed those presented by sending the Philadelphia police in that way that they were. If I were in their shoes, I would have done the same thing.

    As for the specific accusations, what do you really know? To say that 2600 has an agenda is an understatement. The same goes for the rest of these protestors. The ACLU, who I personally feel oversteps "rights" many times, was there officially and they even had few complaints. The local media filmed much of this, they would love nothing more than to film these supposedly outrageous police abuses which would have brought them in much revenue--they have no reason to "lie". Furthermore, I personally witnessed a fair amount of the protests. I saw many of these protestors blatanly lie about "abuse", when only moments before I saw them assaulting officers (i.e., spitting on them, throwing stuff at them, etc.). Why is it that I should suddenly believe them, and not extend the police the benefit of the doubt? Because they're mostly white upper middle class suburban kids? Sorry, but they too have an agenda, most of which is to simply make trouble. This is particularly true when what most of the protestors want MOST is to get media attention through accusations of police brutality.

    As for arresting people who claim to have been merely walking and talking on the phone/radio, the police are allowed the arrest you IF they suspect you have organizing these illegal acts.

  • Heres the real scoop before you believe the "unbiased" news that come from the protest groups themselves.

    Protesters who were arrested were arrested for the following things: (1) Destruction of property (2) Directly assaulting police (3) Blocking traffic. The common tactics used by most truly non-violent protestors (the traffic blocking ones) was to block a street and use various paraphenalia like PVC pipes and chains to lock themselves together. The philly police had to clear these people and they did so with as little force as possible. To do otherwise is irresponsible on the part of the police. Several police have been injured or sprayed with unknown substances when they were either doing nothing (sitting in their patrol cars, etc.) Several more were injured (including the police commissioner) when they attempted to stop violent protestors from tipping over cars and other blatantly destructive activities.

    Unlike Seattle no tear gas was ever used. The philly police were calmer and far gentler than their counterparts in Seattle. The police stopped several trucks and closed down a warehouse they were told housed equipment to be used for disruptive protests. I assume that these things will be sorted out now that the convention is over and the police have actual time to follow up. Incidentally the worst day of protests was the second day of the convention, not the first and not the last. Anyone who tells you differently is making things up.

    As for the jail conditions, it was not uncommon for protesters to strip naked, piss, and crap all over their holding cells. They then demanded to be moved out of their squalid conditions. The police refused and let them sit in their own shit. Some protestors complained about the food because they were (1) vegetarians or (2) had dietary health problems. Food was usually on the order of cheese or pb&j sandwiches (for the lactose intolerant). Philly police site about 400 people in custody and over half have been released. Those still in custody are most likely being held because they will not disclose their real names to the police and will be released once they do. Several people still being held were the riot instructors. These are the people who trained and then were actively coaching the disruptive protestors on the sidelines.

    Considering the incredible pressure and concerted effort put against the Philadelphia police, the city of philadelphia is very happy with its police force. All the pictures and videos I have seen on the local news have been relatively positive towards the police.

  • Proportional representation doesn't exactly apply to a race like the presidential, where there's a single slot to be filled.

    What we need here, according to that voting systems FAQ in the other reply to your post (someone moderate that up, BTW?), is called approval voting, where instead of one voter, one vote, each voter casts a "yes" or a "no" vote for each candidate, and the candidate with the most yes votes wins.

    That way, people can vote for third party candidates without worrying that they may be splitting the vote for their preferred Republicrat candidate, because they'd cast a vote for both. Social liberals in this election might vote yes to Gore and Nader; fiscal liberals might vote yes to Bush and Browne.

    I'd vote yes to Gore and Browne, just to confuse people. As it is, I think that both primary candidates in this election suck (Why did everybody I talked to prefer McCain and Bradley, but Bush and Gore got all the votes anyway), and if Gore was winning by a big margin I'd cast a protest vote for Browne... but as it is, I have to vote for Gore as the only possible way to help keep GWBush from taking the election.

Vitamin C deficiency is apauling.