Posts on April 6, 2005
Help sunset provisions of the Patriot Act!
Music: Dan the Automater - "Relaxation Spa Treatment"
Posted on 2005-04-06 09:31:00
Some of the provisions of the Patriot Act are up for renewal, and so Congress is debating whether to renew them or not. I'd like to see them expire, so I wrote a letter to my Senators and Representative, which is actually pretty darn easy to do and makes me feel more involved in the government. You should do it too!
First thing to do is to do a little research and write your letter. I found information about this at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which led me to a coalition of groups opposed to the Patriot Act (Patriots to restore Checks and Balances). Looking at these sites (and a few news articles) led me to write the following letter:
I would urge you to consider supporting the Security and Freedom Enhancement (SAFE) Act introduced by Senators Craig, Sununu, and Durbin. This act would add some checks and balances to some provisions of the Patriot Act and would help protect the civil liberties of all Americans. When the Patriot Act was passed in 2001 (a mere 45 days after the terrorist attacks of September 11), Congress voted to make the most extreme provisions expire in December 2005 so that they could be reviewed, and now is the time to review and curtail them. The bipartisan group Patriots to restore Checks and Balances (with members such as Grover Norquist and Bob Barr) is in favor of this bill and other efforts to maintain our civil liberties in the face of the Patriot Act.
I would be most interested to hear your thoughts on civil liberties and the Patriot Act. Thank you for your time.
It's not a great letter, but it gets the point across. After that, it's easy to go to www.senate.gov and www.house.gov to find your representatives and write them (they all have email forms to contact them). My representatives are:
Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison
Senator John Cornyn
Representative Michael McCaul
(anyone in Texas has the same senators, but probably a different representative, unless (for example) you live in my apartment complex :-) )
So take 10 minutes and write them. Maybe this isn't important to you, but when an issue that is important comes up, let them know!
Music: They Might Be Giants - "Particle Man"
Posted on 2005-04-06 13:15:00
Tags: robolab challenge
So robolab stuff went pretty well last night - we did another task and then did a few runthroughs. Not that the runthroughs went particularly well (I'm the "commander", which means I decide which tasks to try again, skip, etc...and I was just too tired to do a good job. More practice, which will come Thursday, should help), but we're in pretty good shape. Go us! (we don't have a team name yet)
I'm tired still. I'm having two cokes a day just to stay afloat. Next week I am so catching up on sleep, come hell or high water!
Does anyone else start listening to music right before posting so they can have something to put there? Or am I like the lamest person in the world?
Google Maps now has satellite views of their maps, which is wicked cool. Although it seems to be not working for me at the moment.
There was an article on our internal web site titled "American Idol Debuts at NI". So I was interested, and clicked. The first few sentences were: "American Idol at NI? Well, no … but we are bringing something close." Does this seem like irresponsible journalism to anyone else? I know it's just an internal site, but you can't lie in your story title!
West Wing season finale tonight! The last few episodes have been very good, so I'm really looking forward to tonight's. Who's gonna die this time?
Hmm...still tired. And I get hungrier when I'm tired, so my weight watchers is totally totally shot for the last few weeks (and this one too). Maybe I'll grab some candy. Mmm...
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