You Don’t Live in a Police State? Guess Again.

I’m a bit tardy in posting this due to the holiday, but as it’s important to discuss it and will remain important to remember for years to come, I’m bringing it up again, even though some may unfortunately already feel it’s old news.

Apparently, someone within the Twin Cities local government felt it was within their rights to threateningly enter the homes of innocent people against whom they have no evidence of wrongdoing and proceed to terrorize said people at gunpoint and apparently a judge agreed with them.

Make no mistake, they were indeed terrorizing them. Speaking as someone who has been harassed by a group of police officers, I can tell you without hyperbole that it is terrifying to be forced to listen to the taunting jeers of those with unquestionable authority, especially when they’re armed. I can only imagine how much worse it would be if they forced their way into my home (where I generally hope to feel safe) dressed in riot gear, refused to show a warrant, handcuffed me while I stared speechless at the barrel of a semi-automatic weapon, and forced me to lie on the ground while they referred to each other as the “terminator” or the “exterminator”.

This is NOT a Republican issue and please do not do yourself the disservice of assuming it is. The point is that “democratically” elected officials have the power to do this and we do not believe we have the power to stop them. This is not the behavior of the governing body of a true democracy. This is the behavior of a state in which the government and the people are separate.

Please also do not make the mistake of thinking that this will not happen to you because you are law abiding. Again, there was no evidence against these people. Maybe you assume you will not be the victim of this kind of abuse because you do not put yourself in the position these people did by planning to exercise their rights to assemble and speak freely? Then I ask, are you willing to give up those rights? What happens when you do find yourself faced with a situation in which you feel you need to speak out?

These immoral raids only serve as a reminder that you’re safe, as long as you remain complacent.

The text links in the article I’ve copied below won’t work so check out the original article from Salon.com for more details. Videos are embedded. Continue reading

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Virgin America Makes Less Boring Flights

Having recently taken a flight to MN with NWA and being an avid traveler, I can say with some authority that Virgin America runs a comfortable ship. Our trip started with a personal greeting from one of our flight attendants who made rounds of the lounge introducing herself and shaking hands. Although not a terribly meaningful gesture for a 5.5 hour flight of hundreds of people, it was still a nice touch.
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Rick Rolling and Pop Up Video

Today I learned about Rick Rolling. I was minding my own business when out of nowhere Dave links to the xkcd comic as he so often does. After I give in and add it to my RSS reader, Dave tells me to check out the xkcd blog where there is a link to the music in the comic. A quick Google Yahoo search of Rick Rolling reveals the official link. (haha, got you again.) The comments are priceless although most of them are just, “damn”.

So the funny thing is, I actually really like the song! Shut up, seriously. Never mind the catchy tune, check out that sexy deep voice! A couple months ago I stumbled upon the VH1 Pop-up video version of Never Gonna Give You Up which I now embed here so you can all remember the joy of Rick Astley and Pop-Up Video:

I’m glad that when people on the internet have nothing better to do, they do things that make me laugh.

Update: Thanks for the link to the Family Guy version, Hackel!

Soul Sloshing in the Bay

A frequent question Dave and I are faced with since moving to the San Francisco bay area a few months ago is, “how’s California”. I enjoy talking about myself as much as anyone, but I have trouble answering the same question regularly especially when it feels rhetorical and the simple answer, “good” rolls off my tongue so quickly. In lieu of an emotionless canned response I’ve decided to create a video:

Didja catch all that? I am now open to specific questions relating to the contents of the video. Anything beyond, “how’s California/mountain view/yahoo/the west coast/the warmer weather?” etc. is acceptable.