Big Government And Big Business Steal The Copyright Of Our Lives

Johannes Gutenberg introduced Europe to the printing press in the middle of the 15th Century, finally allowing man to disseminate ideas on a vast scale. The printing press became instrumental in the spread of enlightenment throughout Europe, educating the common man and ushering in the early modern period. While the printing press allowed the rapid spread of revolutionary concepts such as the Protestant Reformation, the abolitionist movement, and women’s rights, it also demonstrated a glaring need to create laws to protect a person’s intellectual property. Patent laws. Copyright laws. Laws that state, “Thou shalt not steal another’s ideas, words or inventions.” Despite this need, it took another 250 years for the first copyright laws to be enacted.

The concept of justice requires that rights be both inalienable and ubiquitous. A truly ‘just’ society must equally and fairly protect all its members. It is a tall order, for it countermands that base nature of man to seek an unfair advantage over his neighbor. Despite having defined the key ingredients to a just society – murder is wrong, theft is wrong, lying is wrong, adultery is wrong, cheating is wrong – nearly 4,000 years ago, the even-handed administration of justice remains a constant battle pitting the criminal, the corrupt, and the rich and powerful, against the common man who simply wants a fair shake.

So what, exactly, is going on today that is so awful? Well, rapid advances in technology are outstripping the letter of the law. For instance, I own the copyright for what you are currently reading just as much as I own the shirt on my back. EVERY word we write is de facto copyrighted without need to lay claim to that copyright. Yet, governments and corporations around the globe are copying and storing our written word for their benefit without our permission, and without any legal repercussions whatsoever. Ethically, I own the copyright on my thoughts, habits, attitudes, preferences and the like. Until the beginning of the 21st Century there was really no need to address this in a legal sense for it was nearly impossible to track people on a mass scale and steal this information. Today, via cell-phone tracking, monitoring of internet use and purchasing habits, various retailer “rewards-type” programs, RFID chips, omnipresent video surveillance, and newly introduced body-recognition scanners based on Microsoft’s Kinect technology, governments and businesses around the globe are able to access, copy, utilize, and profit from the copyright of our lives. Buried in the End User Licensing Agreements (EULA), terms of service and privacy policies of virtually every piece of software and internet service we use, we agree to give away our souls in exchange for a mere pittance. We give Google our very essence for nothing, and they sell it for billions. Going even deeper, in a just society, we own our own selves – our blood and bones – and that means we own the patent and copyright to our own unique genetic code. Twenty years ago there was no technological way to steal it from us. Today, all it takes is a drop of our blood and our genetic make-up can be laid bare for all to see and use without our knowledge or permission.

This is not a reality we have to accept. I do not use Facebook because I do not agree to their amorphous, ever-changing terms of service. I rarely use Google. I try to seek out those companies who respect my privacy, and try to shun those who profit by thieving the copyright of my life. If that means I choose a service that costs me a few dollars a year over the “free” service, I do not complain, for in reality, nothing is free. We all pay, one way or another. Finally, since “free market” solutions can only take me so far, I also voice my concerns with my elected representatives, in hopes they see the virtue in a just society and act accordingly. Pushing back is a lot easier than you think. We do not have to be sheep. Willful violations of federal copyright law can result in up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine per offense. We are not required to give up our 4th Amendment rights, our international copyright rights, nor our right to self-ownership simply because we want to participate in today’s world. Can you imagine the US Postal Service, or FedEx, or UPS  only delivering your goods and correspondences if you agreed to allow them to make a digital copy of the contents first? You would be outraged! That is exactly what is happening with all of our electronic activities. ALL OF THEM. Phone calls, texts, e-mails, search engines, purchases. It is time to get outraged.

Oregonian Journalist, Maxine Bernstein, Intentionally Misleads Readers in Racially Biased, Anti-gun Article

Oregonian journalist, Maxine Bernstein, is a crafty fabricator, and I cannot help but believe her editor, Peter Bhatia, knows it. Yet Bhatia still placed Bernstein’s anti-gun, white-male-hating article, Identifying, Preventing the Growth of a Killer, on the front page of the December 12, 2013 edition of The Oregonian like an enormous weeping boil. By using great care to game her facts and statistics, Bernstein soundly blames America’s culture of manly, competitive self-sufficiency for our high murder and suicide rates as well as all of our gun violence. Except pretty much everything she wrote is wrong. I am here to set the record straight.

Of the five most populated nations on Earth, only China has a combined violent death/suicide rate lower than America's

Of the five most populated nations on Earth, only China has a combined violent death/suicide rate lower (barely) than America’s

Guns Cause Suicides? Really?

First off, do not believe Maxine B when she implies that America’s plethora of privately owned firearms lead to a huge increase in suicides and violent deaths. She is lying like a bad toupee. For instance, she says that Americans shoot each other at least seven times more than the good citizens from India shoot each other. That is because Indians, for the most part, are not allowed to own guns. What Classy Maxie forgot to mention is that the combined rate of suicide and violent death in India is more than 40% higher than America’s, and combined rate of France is only a scant 10% lower than the U.S. rate. About 639 Indians commit suicide every day, mostly by hanging. The same goes for the French – despite owning more than 30 guns per 100 citizens, the French still prefer to hang themselves. The bottom line is the global average of 175 countries for suicide is about 9.5 per 100,000 in population, and America’s suicide rate is about 10.4 per 100,000 in population. There is absolutely no global correlation between increased rates of gun ownership and increase rates of suicide. However, there is a direct correlation between decreasing rates of lawful gun ownership and increasing rates of violent deaths.

While global suicide rates remain statistically flat as lawful gun ownership rates drop, the risk of a violent death increases for the average disarmed society

While global suicide rates remain statistically flat as lawful gun ownership rates drop, the risk of a violent death increases substantially  for the average, disarmed society

The White Man Does Bad Again

Next good ol’ Maxibad makes the claim that violence be Whitey’s fault. “Between 1982 and 2001, for example, white men were responsible for all but two of the mass shootings inside middle schools and high schools.” Nice try, chicken, but let’s go again. The FBI definition for a mass shooting (or mass event) is four or more injuries in one event. Between 1980 and 2013 there were 37 mass school shootings and 1 mass bombing that occurred at elementary schools, middle schools, high schools and colleges, involving approximately 41 perpetrators. Only 25 were white males. Let’s break that down for Mizz Bernstein.

  • 9% of America’s criminals are women. 7% of the mass event perps were women.
  • 12.6% of America’s population is African-American. About 19% of the mass event perps were black.
  • 4.8% of America’s population is Asian. 10% of the mass event perps were Asian.
  • 0.9% of America’s population is native. One mass event perp was Native American.
  • 16.4% of America’s population is Hispanic. One mass event perp was Hispanic.
  • 0.8% of America’s population is Muslim. One mass event perp was Persian.
  • 72.4% of America’s population is white. 61% of the perps be Whitey.

The single most common thread tying most of the killers together is their collective history of mental illness, not their “whiteness.” About 40 years ago or so, progressives like Maxine Bernstein (and her expert, PSU psych-guy, Eric Mankowski, dare I say) decided to take the mentally ill out of the institutions and put them on the street. Crazy people wandering loose do crazy things and today, thanks to left-wing progressives, it is almost impossible to put them in an institution until it is way too late. As for providing quality psych services for the at-risk population, that ain’t gonna happen, either. About half of all psychiatrists refuse to accept patients on medicare or medicaid. That, not lawfully owned firearms, equals dead educators and dead students.

Testosterone – Fact or Fiction

Last, for some reason Maxine B wants to imply that men being aggressive is something new and dangerous, and society needs to reprogram (prenatally, no less – Gattaca anyone?) its young men to be… well… to be women. Men just need to cry more and strive less, I guess. Men would never be competitive or self-sufficient unless society taught them so. Yes, that is right, folks, testosterone is not a ubiquitous endogenous male hormone, rather it is a taught behavior. Darwin had it all wrong, don’t ya know. Before guns existed men only wore pastels, always played nice and took turns being king. Before guns existed, the world was not a vicious place where men hacked each other to bits with swords, burned villages and raped women. Really Maxine? What history have you been reading? Holy shit! The fact is, in the real world the rate of violence has been declining for centuries. Too bad the left-wingers are creating such a vast fiction. I suppose just about now the U.S. Secret Service is labeling me a threat because I strive for success and self-sufficiency rather than relying on the nanny state for everything while crying myself to sleep every night.

Fish In A Barrel – With a Bullseye

All this makes me wonder what is wrong inside Maxine Bernstein’s head? What is wrong with her editor, Peter Bhatia? The First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States no more sanctions obfuscation, disinformation and lies than the Second Amendment sanctions murder. Yet, while murderers go to prison, journalists like Maxine B hide within the folds of the First Amendment cloak so they can lie with utter impunity and call it journalistic integrity. Unfortunately, no single psychological profile or set of warning signs can reliably predict which journalists will undermine the Constitution of the United States or be the next mass fabricator. Simply put, it is a buyer-beware industry. Journalists write, but it is the citizen’s responsibility to fact-check, not Peter Bhatia’s. Oh, and a message to Maxine – Honesty earns respect.