Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 12th Jan 2013 20:25 UTC
In the News "Computer activist Aaron H. Swartz committed suicide in New York City yesterday, Jan. 11, according to his uncle, Michael Wolf, in a comment to The Tech. Swartz was 26." Swartz was one of three co-creators of Reddit, worked on the RSS 1.0 specification at age 14, and so many other things. Swartz faced decades in prison for downloading a collection of JSTOR scientific articles. JSTOR dropped charges, but the US government pursued the case anyway, demanding fifty years in jail. Lawrence Lessig, one of his close friends: "Aaron had literally done nothing in his life 'to make money'. He was fortunate Reddit turned out as it did, but from his work building the RSS standard, to his work architecting Creative Commons, to his work liberating public records, to his work building a free public library, to his work supporting Change Congress/FixCongressFirst/Rootstrikers, and then Demand Progress, Aaron was always and only working for (at least his conception of) the public good. He was brilliant, and funny. A kid genius. A soul, a conscience, the source of a question I have asked myself a million times: What would Aaron think? That person is gone today, driven to the edge by what a decent society would only call bullying. I get wrong. But I also get proportionality. And if you don't get both, you don't deserve to have the power of the United States government behind you." Our sincere condolences to his family and friends. We've just lost one of the good guys.
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RE: We the people petition
by adkilla on Sun 13th Jan 2013 13:47 UTC in reply to "We the people petition"
Member since:

I would urge any American who could sign this petition to seriously consider taking the trouble to do it. We need to teach corporate toadies who abuse the government to never bully people into oblivion.

My heart goes out to those close to Swartz and those who were likewise harmed by the govt.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: We the people petition
by darknexus on Sun 13th Jan 2013 19:22 in reply to "RE: We the people petition"
darknexus Member since:

I would urge any American who could sign this petition to seriously consider taking the trouble to do it. We need to teach corporate toadies who abuse the government to never bully people into oblivion.

Are you really that naive? Exactly what do you think signing a petition is going to do? Sign it, send it, and watch them flush it down the toilet after wiping their ass with it. Petitions do absolutely nothing, and if you think they actually mean something to these assholes in power, you're as much a part of the problem as they are. Understand this: they don't care what you, or I, or any of the rest of us think. As long as all we do is throw words at them, nothing will change. They're too far entrenched for petitions and protests to do anything but amuse them. Yet, as long as the only thing most of us are willing to do is throw words at them, we'll never see enough concentrated effort to deal with these pricks.

Reply Parent Score: 2

UltraZelda64 Member since:

Unfortunately, you are right. The White House has already demonstrated many times over since the introduction of their "We The People" petition site that the only "people" that matter are themselves. Time and time again Obama has refused to take serious issues brought up in the form of petitions as anything close to seriously.

See his official mocking of those various petitions of citizens who wanted marijuana to be legalized back when the site went up--petitions whose signatures far, far exceeded the official requirement just received the typical bullshit-driven, fact-devoid garbage and anti-drug propaganda the government is so excellent at spewing. Wonder if he feels like an idiot now that a couple of states have already legalized it, many higher-up people are speaking out for its legalization, and it is quickly gaining traction in other states. It's like the unraveling of the Prohibition of Alcohol all over again, but for a new century and a different drug. And long past due.

And still, what the hell, I signed it anyway. It most likely won't lead to anything at all, but it can't hurt. And I already had an account created for signing other petitions previously. But I admit, you are pretty much right... the people in power don't give a f--k about anything but their own wealth, power and personal agendas. We're nothing to them; any claims otherwise are just to make it look like they really believe in the true meaning of the Constitution.

The main things they want is to trounce on more of our rights, make themselves more powerful and us mere citizens weaker as a result, find new ways to gouge us of money (taxes), and gain total control over how we live our lives. Once they've achieved that, they'll be happy. Maybe.

Edited 2013-01-14 04:46 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3