matt | January 10, 2005
Sorry I've been gone for so long. Blame the holidays, video games, and nothing much to say. However, I've found something to talk about:
When walking to the Wakefield mall Staples from the parking lot, I saw a wonderful poster in the bus shelter that lead one to believe that merely getting caught with alcohol under the age of 21 would lead to a suspension of your license, even if you're not driving. That can't be right, can it? Yep, it is. House bill 2004 H 7333. Of course, it's a “may be subject to a minimum 60 day license suspension”, but it's still bullshit. If you're driving, that's one thing, but we're not talking driving here, folks; we're talking simple posession.
Of course, this brings up the larger issue – why do we worry about this in the first place? Drinking and operating a motor vehicle causes a public safety concern, and should be dealt with harshly. But just drinking? Come on.
Of course, for those of you who haven't been following it, it gets better. As detailed in this article the practice of parents allowing their kids to have supervised drinking parties (we had sleepovers where some guy's dad would buy us beer and no one would be allowed to go home) is being legislated against. Just knowingly allowing the party to happen is potentially illegal.
How did this country end up with such a huge stick up it's ass?
1.) It's a very simple concept – if people aren't hurting anyone, let them be.
2.) How much longer are we going to stave off adulthood? This prolonged adolescence is a byproduct of the industrial revoution, and hence, is completely artifical. People used to be apprenticed starting at age 12. Now, it's 18. Why? Maybe pushing it back a couple years is not a bad thing, but 6?
3.) Of course, it's still not consistent – 18 is the age of majority, but not really, because there's a bunch of stuff you can't do until you're 21 (Handguns and alcohol come to mind). Pick an age and stick with it.
Of course, this whole thing isn't all that surprising. After all, the government is supposed to be the personal policeman. Never mind that something isn't a danger to the society, it's enough that the activity can somehow be construed as “bad” and therefore it needs to be criminalized. It doesn't matter that, in theory, you are an individual who can choose. The powers that be are smarter than you are, they will determine what is good for you, make everything bad for you illegal, and make sure to take care of you.
And, of course, once everyone has grown fat and happy on the teat of the state, and all our means of defending ourselves have been exchanged for a police force enforcing the will of said state, and all the flavor has been sucked out of life, some enterprising group appear, stage a coup, and the public will be left powerless. Of course, the real truth is that they likely wouldn't even care – after all, as long as the police are still there to “protect” us, and the various social programs stay up, why does it matter?
MADD == Modern temperence movement. Listen to them for a bit; responsible drinking is not the message they convey. Their message is one of prohibition.
In other news, radio host Garrison Keillor is of the opinion that born-again Christians shouldn't vote. Now, assuming he's serious (or at the very least, engaging in semi-serious satire) it still comes back to this fundamental stupidity on both sides of the fence.
1.) I have to go with Liz M. on this one – if you didn't vote in the presidential election, you have no right to complain for the next 4 years. There were a LOT of candidates on the ballot, and I'm sure you could have found SOMEONE you could get behind. This goes for both sides. And no, the “It doesn't matter, RI will go to Kerry no matter what I vote for” doesn't hold water, because if everyone feels like that, no other votes get cast.
2.) Everyone has a right to vote. I don't care what your politics are, you should be able to get behind this. That's kind of the whole point. Unless you want to go back to the “only rich white men can vote” system of things….
3.) Yes, the electoral college is stupid. That argument even held water 4 years ago. But, like it or not:
a.) Bush was elected by electoral college.
b.) Bush was elected by popular vote.
c.) Bush was elected by majority popular vote (which, surprisingly, doesn't happen all that much).
This is not a reason to leave the electoral college in place; by all means, get rid of it. However, the country has spoken, and like it or not, they chose Dubya. (Don't blame me, I voted libertarian). And besides, they don't say that it's a choice between a Giant Douche and a Turd Sandwich for nothing.
I suppose that's enough of a rant for tonight. Misc notes:
- WRT54G v2.2 doesn't like the Sveasoft Satori firmware. So, it can't be used as a wireless bridge for a PS2
- Star Wars Battlefront is probably one of the better FPS's I've played in awhile. The split screen is fun with friends.
- Ace Combat '05 is basically Ace Combat '04 revisited. You'd think they'd ad online play or something.
- GTA: San Andreas keeps getting heckled by Liz because of the super ghetto dialoge. That said, it's definitely a decent third installment. However, the shooting stuff still needs work. You need to be able to always go to a FPS mode, or it needs to automagically target the closest enemy.
- Red Dead revolver is not worth $50, but it's kind of campy and fun for $15 used.
- Eagerly awaiting Mercenaries.
- Doom 3 is friggin creepy.
- I want lightguns that work with HDTV and don't suck.