Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Super Dog

No, I don't have a wonder dog. He's still a puppy, and still doing puppy things, like ignoring me, pooing when he feels like, and causing trouble. Some days are good and some days are not so good. Right now, he's looking at me wondering when I'm going to get off the computer and give him attention.
Ok, it's now 15 minutes later. He's into his chew-toys right now and I'm watching TV. Hmm, should I be tweeting this entry instead of blogging it?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

ATTN: Vulcan has been destroyed!

Hey J.J. Abrams, don't let a significant and vital portion of the Star Trek universe get in the way of telling a good story. Though the Star Trek movie was enjoyable and fun, it cuts so deeply that it will be hard to hold validity to the ideals that are behind Star Trek. The destruction of Enterprise in the Star Trek 3 was for a reason. For one character to return from the dead, another had to die. In your movie, one of the four founding member worlds (and 6 billion people) of the Federation is destroyed with nothing gained in return. Either you'll have to find a way to bring back Vulcan, or your going to have end the "alternate time line" at some time to restore balance to the story. This can be done with Spock's death (again) of course, since your whole story hings on the fact that he didn't kill himself at the start of whole story. Anyway, this reboot is a great movie, but it makes the plausible continuation of the franchise very difficult. I guess it does open the door for a second reboot of the franchise in another 20 years.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Grieving family faces more trama

A recent story in the news has caught my attention. There is this family whose daughter died in a traffic accident a couple years ago here in California. As standard practice, the CHP had photographed the accident, including a shot of the young woman's nearly decapitated body. Unfortunately for that woman's family, the CHP officers leaked the gruesome photo some days later, and they ended up all over the internet. As reported, "Even Nikki's grieving father couldn't avoid the pictures. Days after the crash, the real estate developer opened an e-mail he believed was a property listing and found instead a grisly photo of his daughter's body." Ever since, the family has been fighting to get the photos removed, first by going after hosting sites, then by going after the CHP itself. All attempts have failed, thankfully.

Now, I do sympathize with the family for their lose. However, the photographs taken by the CHP are a matter of public record. The CHP actually doesn't have any right to hide those photos from any citizen who requests them. Nor can the law prevent their unlimited disclosure. We live in a free society where the government cannot be allowed to keep information from the public (except for matters of National Security). There are pluses and minus to this, but if we wish to keep our society free, we must prevent the government from hiding any information.

Additionally, this is not a matter of privacy at all. The woman died in an auto accident, which is a public incident. Privacy does not hold any priority in public events. First, I (and every citizen) have the right to photograph anything I wish in public (again, except or matters of National Security). The CHP actually had a responsibility to photograph the accident scene. They actually would've been negligent in their jobs had they not.

So, although privacy is an important right, it is a right that is limited to private acts. With the exception of creative works (protected by copyright), any public incident is a matter that is in the realm of public domain. Side note, in the course of an investigation, any record of evidence collected (photographs of the scene, written reports, etc) by the CHP or any public service is public record.