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Submission + - Liberum Consilium: a concept for moderated deliberation (

An anonymous reader writes: Liberum Consilium is an ICT approach for anonymous, citizen-driven governance decision making. Liberum Consilium is intended to help people understand issues, list implications, share solutions, and agree on a course of action. The idea draws upon concepts from StackOverflow, Slashdot, Civitas, and Wikipedia. Your constructive criticism is desired.

Comment The Public Library Excuse (Score 2) 292

Suppose I went to a public library, logged into my Twitter account and forgot to sign out before leaving. Someone uses the terminal immediately after my departure, notices my Twitter account, tweets Ryan's name, then signs me out.

What if a thief ran off with my phone while I was tweeting, tweets Ryan's name, and then the police recover my phone, but not the crook.

Am I liable? How could they prove it was me?

Comment Said a friend: "No worse than a doctor seeing it." (Score 1) 642

Respectfully, I disagree.

1. You can screen your doctor for trustworthiness.
2. You can choose to visit a doctor of a gender you prefer.
3. Doctors are bound by the Hippocratic Oath: I will respect the privacy of my patients, for their problems are not disclosed to me that the world may know.
4. Doctors rarely take, much less retain, nude photographs of your body.

Collection and use of personal information, including digital photographs, paves a road for government with inscrutable purposes: using information about people while denying them the ability to choose how that information is used. This is a severe tilt in balance between the power of the people and the power of the state. A tilt, to emphasize, that is unfavourable to the people.

In Smith v. City of Artesia, 1989, the court said, "Privacy is inherently personal. The right to privacy recognises the sovereignty of the individual." What is more private than our private parts? What can the general public be subjected to, en masse, that is more personally invasive than a pat-down or nude photo?

More blunt? Can do.

The choice: allow an anonymous agent to take nude photographs of your child, or let strangers grope your child until their hands meet "resistance": a euphemistic way to say, "touch their testicles, penis, or vulva."

Any job that forces someone to feel a child's crotch so as to encourage parents to usher their children through a machine that takes nude photographs--without probable cause of having committed a crime--is a job that aught not to exist.

Systematic violations of our private areas must be countered with outrage and utmost resistance (!) against corporations and governments alike. The TSA are not police and North America has no Police States, yet.

Add to this the uncertain health risks. Terahertz waves have resonant effects that can unzip double-stranded DNA, which, ultimately, could significantly interfere with gene expression and DNA replication. Think children, pregnant women, or sperm. And guess what wave frequency x-ray backscatter machines use? Hint: THz.

My emotions surge at the thought of people speaking or acting out against tyranny. People must express themselves vehemently and eloquently against the infractions that governments permit to be made on our freedoms. Sometimes one voice, or one courageous action, is enough to inspire a nation.

Martin Niemöller foretells of what happens when people--even those who prefer to drive than fly--keep quiet: They came first for the Communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for me and by that time no one was left to speak up.

John Dewey stated, "We cannot separate the idea of ourselves and our own good from our idea of others and of their good." When we protect the rights of individuals by forcing Corporations and Governments to sit at the same table as Respect, Dignity, and Decency, we protect all of our society.

I implore you to read:

Comment Re:Welcome to the future. (Score 1) 352


The problem is that scientists need food; climatologists and meteorologists must earn a living. There are over 19,000 weather stations across the United States alone. Modern Stevenson's screens are not free. Ensuring data quality takes time and effort -- not free. Weather monitoring machines need electricity, and not all weather stations are solar-powered. Climate and weather study is expensive. Consider databases, data storage facilities, backup systems, data analysis tools, and time taken to explore the data.

If you want to know what the data says, download it and analyse it yourself. Environment Canada, for example, allows you to download all daily weather measurements taken at over 7,000 weather stations across the nation. The data goes back to before the 1900s. That's over 230 million data points encompassing snow depth, minimum & maximum temperatures, rain fall, and general precipitation. They charge $100 for the data.

To develop a public-facing website that allows the general public to analyse the data using a simple user interface requires over 500 hours of work for design, implementation, integration, and data transcoding. If you have not the time, money, nor incentive to create such an application yourself, you can use one for free at:

Comment Re:Climate change cover-up (Score 1) 352

All weather measurements taken in Canada during the last century are available to you. You can download them from Environment Canada (for $100) and leaf through the millions of daily weather measurements made since the early 1900s. Or click the following link to visit a website that allows you to quickly plot what the Canadian climate has been doing for the last 100 years (per city) using that data:

The article itself discusses restricting flood data, which can be used to see how the climate has changed since the last ice age, but does not equate to a lock-down on all climate data.

There is no cover-up: you can now see the trends for yourself. There is no question that parts of Canada are heating up and other parts are cooling down (i.e., the climate is rapidly changing).

The questions we should be -- and have been -- asking are: (1) how much have we influenced the change; (2) what is the likelihood that the trends will continue; (3) what are the repercussions if the trend continues; and (4) what can we do to reverse the trends?

Comment Climate Reports (Score 2, Interesting) 701

Publishing raw data attracts little public attention as numbers are boring. Most web-based user interfaces (that I have found) for examining climate data cater to climate scientists and researchers. The results (typically streams of numbers) are great for further analysis, but not so great for the general public.

Exacerbating the problem is that influences on the data are complex, and rarely explained in detail for the layperson.

Such problems make it difficult to explore the data and understand the results. The following web site is my entry for a government-sponsored contest where I have attempted to address both those issues:

I would greatly appreciate your feedback.

Comment Re:Grrr... (Score 1) 853

What do tree hugging Luddites have against solar power? I can see (although not necessarily agree with) the following points:

  • Coal - Dirty
  • Petrol - Dirty
  • Nuclear - Dangerous
  • Hydro - Ecologically invasive
  • Wind - Loud turbines

I am installing a solar-powered evacuated tubing system for heating water. I do not see the problem. If everyone did the same, we'd collectively save about 30% of our housing energy costs.

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