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Help Reverse Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission

May 15, 2014 Leave a comment

It was brought to my attention today that Americans have a chance to speak out against, and disrupt, the crippling influx of corporate campaign money into federal government. At this point, I feel nothing short of compulsion to assist people in convincing their elected officials to support in every aspect, the reversal of one of the worst insults to American democracy in it’s entire history –  Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.

I urge every American of voting age and ability to send a very clear message to their Senators, and House Reps that failure to support this legislation is a declaration of  their refusal to serve the well being of their constituency, in return for cash and favor considerations from the corporations that have our political system in a choke hold.

In all likelihood, this could be a futile effort, especially with the millions of dollars in corporate sponsored ads being unleashed to dissuade and misinform the American populace … but if nothing else, we can present an ultimatum to Washington insiders that they can no longer pad their election funds at the expense of the well being of those they are legally and morally obligated to serve or they will be held accountable.

To help expedite this process, I would provide a few things:

  • Links to identify and contact your House Representatives and Senators.
  • link to verify your representatives votes on this or any other legislation within the House or Senate so that you may hold them accountable for the policy they shape.
  • A sample template for your reps which I invite you to edit as you like. The sample also contains embedded links to learn of  the original CU v. FEC CASE as well as the proposed constitutional amendments to negate it.

Dear  X

I am contacting you today to insist upon your unconditional support of important pieces of legislation, S.J. Res 5111819, along with H.J. Res 121314202125293132, and 34 which were recently introduced by House Representative Jim McGovern, Representative Marcy Kaptur, Senator Jon Tester, Senator Tom Udall and their colleagues with the goal of restoring the common sense restrictions upon federal campaign contributions by corporations.

The reversal of Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission is the first and most paramount step in not only restoring functionality to our embarrassingly defunct political system but also in restoring the faith of American constituents and citizens of the world in our political process and leaders. At the moment, these bills have a great deal of bipartisan support within the House and Senate and there is no acceptable or moral reason for these pieces of legislation to not pass with zero resistance or abstinence.

What these bills fundamentally represent is a proclamation by our elected representatives as to where their allegiance lies and whom they serve, their constituents or the corrupt institutions that have gained a stranglehold on American democracy.

Your vote on these particular bills will be a key determination of whether or not you will receive my support, financial or other, in future political considerations.

Most sincerely
X

 


 

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Why the gun debate is a failure for America

January 17, 2013 Leave a comment

Why the gun debate is a failure for America

As I poke fun at anyone who adheres too firmly or outspokenly to these cliche/defunct political ideologies, I find myself wading through the endless hyperbole on both sides of the gun debate, thinking there is a much larger and more important issue at the heart of this subject which is not being addressed.

The question I would ask: Is it illogical to assume that the decade long fear of our own government’s atrocious behavior is one of the strongest motivations in a person’s desire for automatic weapon capability as well as an obvious reason for those parties responsible for said behavior wanting it’s populace as docile as possible while they behave in such revolting fashion?

The purpose of the second amendment is to provide the people the ability to protect itself against a tyrannical government. It states, verbatim, that it’s “necessary to the security of a free state”. With that in mind, it makes perfect sense that people would desire the resources required to defend themselves against such threat as it would manifest in this day and age. I think the proper question here would be what is the minimum level of firepower required to deter a rogue force from taking control of a community. If you use that as the baseline for what is reasonable or excessive and look at the weaponry our government currently uses against civilian populations across the globe as well as the sonic/microwave/drone technology that is currently being deployed within the US, I find it very hard to consider an assault rifle “excessive” within the true intent of the second amendment.

I have a slight inkling that Americans might be more willing to forfeit a little firepower if it’s government simply refrained from the following: The torture of innocent people, performing drone assassinations on foreign civilians as political favor, revoking our constitutional right to a trial, using illegal wiretaps on a scale that’d make cold-war USSR jizz for days, placing massive amounts of military firepower in the hands of a different gang of lunatics every few years and PAYING the central banks to destroy the world’s economy while rewarding the corporations and banks that have spun the planet into a near free-fall.

In my typical eloquent fashion… I’d say my point is that when it comes to issues of violence in our society, I think president Obama should eat a big Shut-The-Fuck-Up Sundae with extra Shut-The-Fuck-Up and contemplate the decisions and behavior of his own administration before asking a single, mentally stable, law-abiding citizen to give up their right to even a single round of ammunition.

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Doug Stanhope Wilbur Theater Poster Idea

September 5, 2012 Leave a comment

In response to Doug saying he liked the idea of a Hunter S. Thompson “Gonzo Fist” kind of logo during “The Icehouse Chronicles” Podcast #46 recorded on 8/31/2012. It’s about 60% complete at this point and I hope to have it finished with the next session.(http://vimeo.com/48789110) #Deathsquad.tvImage

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The hypocrisy and hilarity of isupportfreespeech.com

August 2, 2012 Leave a comment

Image

While scrolling my Facebook feed this afternoon I came across the above ridiculous image and felt obligated to chime in and test their mettle… Below is my initial comment on their image:

 

“Fuck all you stupid people for pretending to take time out of your day to support the rambling of some old pussy-ass, chicken shit, “the gay people are gonna come get me”, jebus bangin’ bigot when we are actually surrounded by SERIOUS threats to our liberties.

What THE FUCK are you even protesting? People who support gay rights spoke out and now YOU fucktards gotta go speak out against the people who spoke out first and pretend that your defending freedom of speech?

The only thing you idiots are defending is your membership within the heterosexual community… Every last one of you secretly thinks dick is delicious and you are just trying to deny it to yourself and those around you”.

 

A little graphic, a little rough around the edges in terms of form and vocabulary but what can I say, I’m a fan of colorful language and an old-school IRC admin from the 90’s who is accustomed to talking shit online. There is absolutely nothing violent or threatening within my post… Anyhow, about 10 minutes pass and I get a message from someone named Dave Henn which is odd because I restrict Facebook access to approximately 50 close friends and I am not accustomed to receiving unsolicited messages from people I do not know… Here is that message:

 

“Hey, I don’t like this comment. Please remove it. Vulgar and very hateful basis.”

 

Are you fucking kidding me? Someone administrating a page which is supposedly fighting for the right to free speech is asking me to censor myself and referring to my (if I may say so) keen observations as hate speech? Time for round two!

 

“It is NOT hateful. Hateful would be shunning your lifestyle when I don’t even know a thing about you. All I am doing is pointing out the fact that this futile “thing” is in NO way supporting freedom of speech and you people are idiots for thinking it does. 

It is NOT vulgar. Sex is not vulgar. Sucking a dick is not vulgar. While I would never want to do it myself, some people enjoy it and I would never call something vulgar because it is not in line with my personal beliefs or tastes. The only thing vulgar here is that you people have been tricked into supporting the persecution of a minority and are attempting to do it under the guise of protecting the first amendment.

You people should be ashamed of yourselves, not I. If you want the comment removed, remove it yourself… and tell yourself how you are a good person protecting the freedom of speech while you are doing it. You could NOT be more of a dimwitted contradiction.”

 

At that point, I waited another 5-10 minutes, honestly hoping I would receive some kind of response being that I kept things to a PG-13 tone with a minimal amount of insults or bashing… but no such luck. After 10 minutes or so the following message just appeared below my response.

 

“You can no longer message Dave Henn. Learn more.”

 

Although I wish the conversation could have went on longer, this ass-hat confirmed that everything I assumed about them was true by simply censoring me and subsequently blocking me. They have no interest in promoting freedom of speech, their true message is that a lifestyle that differs from their own is a sin against god and they are willing to use the guise of first amendment crusaders as tool to spread their poison to those who are too stupid to see the truth.

If anyone else would like to chime in under their fraudulent post, you may do so at the following url.

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150977977022869&set=a.10150964847742869.420561.6934857868&type=1
 @gnice3d / Dixon B. Tweenercheeks

Categories: Uncategorized

Deathsquad Production Assistant

May 1, 2012 Leave a comment

If you guys would legitimately like to lighten the load in regards to the production responsibilities of the podcasts…

Firstly, I would dare to assume that a big part of the frustrations we saw today (JRE#211) stems from the amount of hours and energy that Brian has to invest across all of the Deathsquad podcasts. Not only the live broadcasts, but all the work required in maintaining the studio, working with the hosts in terms of scheduling and coming up with content as well as the post-production duties required to get the content distributed through multiple platforms and channels as you graciously do.

I think adding a technically versatile production assistant would have an immediate and positive effect on the quality of all the shows. Someone to help maintain the studio equipment, assist in pre/post, video segments, (top five) managing of the web portals and content delivery, handling mail… Whatever needs to be done over the course of the week’s schedule.

I think with the right head / set of hands, helping in the background, you guys could easily increase output of the podcasts by 30-50% without Redban working himself to death as he’s been doing. Based upon each shows typical running times, I think you could easily pump out a minimum of 10 podcasts each week within a 40 hour work schedule, similar to what’s shown below;

JRE x2

BoneZone x1

Naughty Show x1

Callen Show x1

Icehouse x1

Whats Good x1

Misc / Pilots x3

I don’t want to get too lengthy here… It’d be a good time to expand a little bit 🙂

@gnice3d

Categories: Uncategorized

How to fight AT&T in small claims court and win.

March 15, 2012 Leave a comment

The thought of “going to court” with a big company like AT&T, with their stable of expensive lawyers, can intimidate even the most stalwart of consumers. But when the court in question is small claims court, where lawyers aren’t allowed and court procedures are much more informal, handling your own case can be a relatively easy and painless way to get satisfaction.  This guide will cover the highlights of what you need to represent yourself and have your voice heard.

Before you begin

The most important document you’ll need is the contract you signed with AT&T.  You’ll need this to prove certain aspects of your case.

File in your state’s small claims court

Find your state in this list and follow the links to see how and where to file. In most states, filing is a matter of filling out a form and paying the filing fee, which typically ranges from $40-80. Most small claims courts adhere to the loser-pays philosophy, so you may be able to get that filing fee back if you’re successful in court. Most states will let you download the forms and fill them out at home, but if you have questions, take the form to the court clerk and have them help you. Its important to get this step right, so ask questions if you have them and have the clerk check your form before you file!

Notification and subpoena

Once you’ve filed in your jurisdiction, you have to notify the defendant (AT&T) of the filing. This is also the step that allows you to require AT&T to provide information as well. In Matt’s case, he subpoenaed the records for the tower closest to his home along with the average speed of users in his area.

Proving your case

Your day in court has finally arrived—now what? Unfortunately, its not quite as simple as showing up and telling the judge you want your $850 too. You’ll need to prove your case, but here are the points to make in your argument:

  • You were promised unlimited data by the contract you signed with AT&T. Have your a copy of your contract handy, and highlight the sections that support your case, in particular the portions promising you unlimited data.
  • AT&T did in fact limit your service: this is a well-documented practice of AT&T’s, but you can prove it in your own case using tools like Speedtest or Glasnost, which can check for different kinds of throttling. Check your bandwidth frequently, even before suspected throttling, and log your findings, because its important to show your normal rate of download versus your throttled rate. In Matt’s case, he was seeing a throttled rate of 0.13Mbps, versus a normal rate of 3.46Mbps, a 20x slowdown of his normal rate.  The best evidence of this would be to check and log your bandwidth several times a day, for several days both before and after the throttling kicks in.
  • The throttling of your bandwidth by AT&T caused you some kind of economic damage, which is the basis for the monetary amount you specify in your lawsuit. In Matt’s case, the damage was an inability to use Netflix, a service which he paid for and had a reasonable expectation to be able to use. Your damages may be based on something like that, an inability to do your work, or anything that has demonstrable economic value. In general you can ask for your state’s maximum award, but the judge is going to use this part of your argument in setting damages if you successfully plead your case.
  • AT&T claims to have the fastest network. Under the doctrine of “justifiable reliance“, that a reasonable person of similar education and background would accept their claim on its face and make an economic decision based on the content of their claim, they are obligated to make a reasonable attempt at providing such service.
  • AT&T’s methodology for choosing a cap was unpredictable and vague. The top 5% of users in an area found themselves throttled,
  • AT&T has defended their throttling in the past by saying that the top 5% of users is responsible for network congestion. But a closer look disproves this theory:
    • Is the premise true? Uncapped users on average utilize an average of 3.97GB data transfer per billing cycle, versus 3.19 for capped plans, according to a study by Validas, which amounts to an average of an additional 25% bandwidth. AT&T routinely provides data plans up to 5GB per month, which leads one to believe that the average uncapped user is well within their ability to provide service.
    • Is it necessary? AT&T, until March 1, began throttling unlimited customers who had utilized between 1.5GB and 2.0GB in a given billing cycle. AT&T has had a 3GB billing plan for over a year at a similar price point to their old unlimited plan. Clearly they had the ability to deliver the promised service at least up to that point, and declined to do so as a matter of policy. (As of March 1, their stated policy is to throttle unlimited customers starting at 3GB of data transfer, which stil flies in the face of an unlimited plan.)

Based on the above arguments you have a good chance of a similar outcome in your own case.  However, small claims decisions are not precedent-setting, so your mileage my vary depending on the jurisdiction you file in. AT&T has stated an intent to appeal the decision in Matt’s case, and if they do so in yours, do not expect the money to come right away as any judgment will be held up while the appeal is processed.

This is important.

The reason we started PublikDemand was to help consumers take back the power from corporations who treat their customers capriciously, depending on the difficulty of getting resolution to complaints through a bureaucracy designed to thwart consumers. For far too long the balance of power has been in their favor. It would be a lovely world if we didn’t have to go through these methods to get resolution, but if everyone who has a case takes it to small claims court, we can send a message as consumers that making it painful to resolve complaints isn’t going to work anymore.

[Original posting]

Categories: Uncategorized

AT&Thieve

March 15, 2012 Leave a comment
I received the following text message at 7:30am notifying me that my unlimited data connection will be throttled at the 3GB mark… when I am already at 2.9GB.

“ATT Free Msg: Your data usage is near 3GB this month. Exceeding 3GB during this or future billing cycles will result in reduced data speeds, though you’ll still be able to email & surf the web. Wi-Fi helps you avoid reduced speeds. Visit www.att.com/datainfo or call 866-344-7584 for more info.”

Categories: Uncategorized