01438: And Now the News, Don't Touch That Dial!

The blog entry title isn't even a Wreck-Gar quote!
As part of my usual efforts to give this blog some historical relevance by securely putting it in the proper time/place setting of current times, let's talk about a few recent news items as of late.

Blair Carabuena Gets Lifetime Driving Ban - I had previously written about the woes of my batchmate, Blair Carabuena, after he got into an altercation with the MMDA. Just over a month later, the LTO has ruled that he is banned from getting a driver's license for life. I didn't even know the LTO could do this and it's annoying that we've not heard of cases when other drivers who have gotten into horrible accidents that cost people's lives because of irresponsible behavior (e.g. driving under the influence) have yet to get this same sanction. I'll need to do my research, but I get a very big feeling I won't find much. Yes he deserves punishment, but somehow I don't think the response is appropriately scaled to the initial offense. It feels way more like an act of revenge and a way for the department to assuage its ego.

New Cybercrime Law Includes Online Libel - The Cybercrime Prevention Act was signed into law by the President last September 12. While on the surface it seems like a good idea, the law provides vague sweeping powers to deal with what is determined to be potential cybercrime including "online libel". Naturally this law comes into direct conflict with the inherent democratic rights to freedom of expression and can potentially lead to warrantless website take-downs and other acts of censorship given only circumstance evidence. Naturally this is one of those laws that managed to slip by public attention given everyone was focused on waiting for Sen. Tito Sotto to say something stupid in the media once more.

Romney Bashes 47% of America in Secret Video - Website Mother Jones has released a series of supposedly "secret" video clips from a closed fundraiser where he makes a number of disparaging remarks against Obama supporters. One of the worst quotes that goes thus:
There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.
This is one of those news releases that the media are going to pick apart all week and I can't imagine how the Romney campaign are going to properly defend his statements. They've made a few meager attempts within the first 24 hours of the report, but frankly they're not going to go very far to help him. I don't necessarily believe that this guarantees Obama the elections, but it certainly helps his campaign a lot more than any speech that the President can make on his own.

Otherwise, I'm tired from another long work day. So much to do, so little time. Oh life.
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