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Hillary hasn't been acting very liberal lately... - Adventures in Engineering — LiveJournal
The wanderings of a modern ronin.

Ben Cantrick
  Date: 2006-03-10 17:27
  Subject:   Hillary hasn't been acting very liberal lately...
Public
  Mood:snarky
Democrats Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut, Hillary Clinton of New York, and Dick Durbin of Illinois persuaded a Senate committee to approve a sweeping study of the "impact of electronic media use" to be organized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC.

Even though the legislation - called the Children and Media Research Advancement Act - does not include restrictions, it appears to be intended as a way to justify them. That's because a string of court decisions have been striking down antigaming laws because of a lack of hard evidence that minors are harmed by violence in video games.


http://www.gamespot.com/news/2006/03/09/news_6145659.html?part=rss&tag=gs_&subj=6145659

First signing her name to a flag-burning ban, and now this? Well, she's at least consistant in her attempts to destroy 1st Amendment rights. :P

P.S. Dear idiots pushing this legislation: LOOK AT THE FREAKING RATING right there on the front of the box of the video games your kid plays! if it says "Adults Only" (which the ESRB ratings do, in plain text) then do something about it. Talk to your kid, play the game yourself, or in the extreme take it away. How hard is that?



Is our nation really in such a wonderful state that the only thing our legislators have left to worry about is, "what if some dumb idiot saw violence in the media?? OH NOES!!!" Mindless reactionary Puritanism was old 200 years ago, and its relevance hasn't improved with age.

Funny how nobody seems to be proposing laws to ban kids from taking karate lessons. There's another activity very deeply rooted in explicitly learning how to be violent towards other people. And yet somehow the population at large seems to understand that when done with the correct attitude, it's both healthy and fun. Is it so hard to see that video games can be the same way?

Censors and morality cops are always whining about how you can beat up hookers in Grand Theft Auto. (Or, apparently even worse, actually have sex with them! Ahhh!!) Well let me tell you something. When you throw a punch at an average looking person on the streets in GTA, they run away screaming. When you start beating up a hooker, she hits back! I've been "killed" (which means you wake up at the hospital) in GTA by a pissed off hooker. The moral is pretty clear here: you'd better be prepared for a savage counter-smack if you take a swing at the working girls. They are NOT helpless. Now I admit that's a more radical women's empowerment message than most people can stomach. But is it really the kind of message that causes moral decay in children? I don't think so. "If you hit people, they will hit you back" is a pretty good lesson to learn. It teaches us why violence is not a solution to our problems.

Frankly, I just think the senators who trot out the flag burning and video game violence issues are straight up media whores. Legislation by idiots, for idiots. Guys, can you please do something useful with your life? For once? Just for a little change of pace? I'd suggest getting back to making a good case for impeachment, though that's just my personal agenda.

Which is not to say that I hold video game manufacturers innocent either. Of course they're out to make a buck, and will push the envelope as far as they think they can get away with. (Though I have to admit I recently did a huge WTF??? when GTA creators Rockstar Games announced their next big title would be, get this, PING PONG!)

But I think that laws that attempt to substitute government authority for parental authority are just plain misguided. And it seems a lot of gamer parents not only agree, but actively seek to play video games with their kids. Hell yeah! So maybe there's hope for humanity after all. Maybe all we REALLY need is a series of video games that teaches our kids that it's OK to brutally murder politicians. Yes, I can see it now. GTA: Capitol Hill. One of the missions can be to assassinate the president. With a sniper rifle. ;D That way everyone wins. Well, except the media whore politicians.
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  User: cassandrapoe
  Date: 2006-03-11 19:48 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
Four words: Seduction of the Innocent.

Video games are the new comic books.

Additionally, what 'they' (the enemy, the censors, the forces that control) are actually most afraid of is SELF-EXPRESSION. 'Promotes violence' is a shield phrase to cover their actual meaning of 'makes you think thoughts that aren't good for the order'. Yeah, y'know, in their thinking, stealing cars in GTA makes you go out and steal cars in real life, but that's not what they're REALLY afraid of. What they're REALLY afraid of is that you'll stop GIVING A SHIT about cars as value-objects, that you'll stop looking away when the police walk by, that the precious, precious RULES might possibly be questioned.

That's why everything that rational people simply enjoy as escapism or pressure-releases is going to be attacked.
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Alex Belits
  User: abelits
  Date: 2006-03-12 05:23 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
Why oh why a comparable amount of wrath never falls on umm... TV advertisement? I mean, one doesn't need a massive research grant to show that most of TV advertisement targeted toward children is exploitative in its nature, promotes stupid trends, shallowness, bad taste and bad habits.

Oh, wait, we can't censor free expression of corporations when the only goal of such expression is to make money. We would rather censor artists/writers/programmers' expression in video games -- after all, they could just as well write Golf #65537 instead, and if everyone did nothing but that, people would still buy it, right?

So TV (BTW, broadcasting over radio spectrum that belongs to the public and is managed by FCC, poorly) is filled with ads for shit => parents should keep kids from watching it, but a video game on a shelf of a gaming store with all kinds of rating stickers on it, mentions things like "gangs", "hookers" and the idea of dying => government has to jump in. I see some seriously misplaced priorities here.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
Alex Belits
  User: abelits
  Date: 2006-03-16 21:52 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
1. I assume that the purpose of the government is to serve people, and laws have to be designed to promote that and prevent the opposite. Saying that government can become evil, and therefore it should be powerless to do anything that matters, is a great excuse for having a shitty government, but I just don't buy it.

2. I don't care if something is "objectionable", I care about things purposefully made exploitative and damaging. I can kinda understand a point of view that it's ok to have a TV show for adults in 10-minute segments with 5-minute breaks filled with ads for Scientology, penis pills and suicide booths -- after all, I am an adult, and I would be merely offended by this. The problem is, kids are not designed to be offended by stupid crap like adults are, they are still in a "learning" mode, and pick up things without much of an application of critical thinking that -- guess what -- will be developed later using material that they will pick up from sources that they blindly trust now. So standards should be adjusted accordingly, with interests of the viewers in mind because their development and sanity is threatened.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
Ben Cantrick
  User: mackys
  Date: 2006-03-13 06:08 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
Sorry, as someone who has actually been taking Karate Kempo classes, any resonable/ethical karate sensei starts out with the rule, run away first. If that doesn't work, defend yourself. Above all else learn discipline.

Funny, we didn't start out that way in my aikido class. In fact, I can't remember ever hearing a single word about anything like that. Do you suppose they're teaching me to be violent and amoral?

As for the Tipper Gore faction of the Democratic party, please don't tell me that you think that Democrats will somehow stand up for your rights when they haven't for so many other issues right?

Given Tipper and Hillary's track records, I most certainly do NOT believe they will come to the defense of First Amendment freedoms any time soon. Hence why I call them out in public.

See, I'm not afraid to publicly criticize members of my party when they behave badly. That's something that (with the possible exception of McCain and a very few others) apparently makes Liberals different than conservatives. We don't particularly fear dissent from within our own party, and don't consider principled dissent disloyal or harmful.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
(no subject) - (Anonymous)
(no subject) - (Anonymous)
Ben Cantrick
  User: mackys
  Date: 2006-03-16 23:19 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
Does the name Valerie Plame not mean anything to you?
You mean the valarie Plame who was outed by Richard Armitage, a critic of the administration?

Yes, the same Valerie Plame whose name and identity as a CIA Operative were leaked to Armitage by Scooter Libby, Vice President Cheney's chief of staff.

Nobody is talking about doing that,

Well, it's supposed to be an analogy. When Hillary and Leiberman try to censor video games because they see video games as violent, I think they're being as silly as someone who attempts to censor karate lessons because "karate lessons are teaching our kids to be violent." My points are, approximately, that A) "I don't see the correlation between video games/karate lessons and violence, guys. Really. Show me. Because research and real-world experience is not demonstrating it." and B) "Why exactly do you think you have the right to tell America's kids what they can and can't do, anyway? That's for their parents to decide, not you."

I am just objecting to putting video games in the same category as Karate, Kendo, working out in the gym, or other things that build discipline.

I admit that martial arts lessons are better builders of self-discipline than video games, but I don't think video games are without merit in teaching persistance. I think most people have to spend a bit of time and self-discipline to, say, get good at DOA. We didn't win the game the first time we picked up the controller, we had to play quite a bit, and persevre in the face of the machine laying some awfully good smackdowns on us. Beating down Ruby Weapon isn't a no-brainer either. It's not the same thing, but I do think there are similarities.
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
Ben Cantrick
  User: mackys
  Date: 2006-03-17 01:04 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)

Wikipedia is not always the best source, but Armitage's page there seems to say that while people claim he might have been Novak's first source, nobody actually knows.

We DO know for certain that Rove referred to Plame by reference ("Wilson's wife at The Agency") in an email to a reporter before Novak's disclosure.

We also have this statement from Special Prosecutor Fitzgerald:

"Mr. Libby's story that he was at the tail end of a chain of phone calls, passing on from one reporter what he heard from another, was not true," Fitzgerald said.

"He was at the beginning of the chain of phone calls -- the first official to disclose this information outside the government to a reporter -- and then he lied about it afterwards, under oath and repeatedly," he said.


Unfortunately I can't make any absolute statements about Libby yet, because his trial isn't going to happen until Jan 2007. Oi. Well, he did intentionally waive his right to a speedy trial...
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Ben Cantrick
  User: mackys
  Date: 2006-03-16 03:40 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
I wouldn't send my kids to learn under your sensei either.

That's totally cool by me. I'm all about you deciding for your kids which (if any) sensei is right for them, for whatever reason(s) you personally have. What I don't want to see is the government saying, "Well, because WE don't like it that Ben's sensei doesn't put a disclaimer on his martial arts training, we're going to outlaw him from teaching." That's just not right.

Democrats don't supress principled dissent.
Neither do republicans. Neither do American's for that matter.

Ninja, please... do these quotes sound familiar:

"To those who scare peace-loving people with phantoms of lost liberty, my message is this: Your tactics only aid terrorists for they erode our unity and diminish our resolve."

"The stakes in the global war on terror are too high and the national interest is too important for politicians to throw out false charges. These baseless attacks send the wrong signal to our troops and to an enemy that is questioning America's will."

Does the name Valerie Plame not mean anything to you?

The NeoCons cannot tolerate dissent and actively seek to quash it. We have seen it over and over again.

Frankly, the amount of time the Democrats have spent out of power has built a very nice martyr complex in that party. If they would get over it, and actually have, you know, a election plank that did something other then placate to their base, they might have a shot of winning a election.

Well I'm supposed to be their base, and I'm not feeling very placated. :P I think that the vast majority of Democrats have seriously lost whatever principles they ever had. Not much of a surprise, of course, given that they're politicians.
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