Wise, Good and Honest

Wherefore, honest men and wise men should be sought for diligently, and good men and wise men ye should observe to uphold; (D&C 98:10)

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Is Edward Snowden more Noble or Treasonous?


Is Edward Snowden more noble in that he revealed practices the government unduly kept secret? Or was he more treasonous in that he revealed sensitive information that unduly put our protectors at risk? I do not have enough information to conclude definitively. I do believe that, in the long term, he has caused us more benefit than harm.

On May 13 & May 20, 2014 Frontline aired "United States of Secrets". It ends with the many and detailed secrets about how the US government violated privacy measures in law and in the constitution. Whatever security problems that may have come from the secrets he revealed is outweighed by the light he is shining on our own government. It is currently available to watch on Netflix.

One of the principles that makes the USA great is that "governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed". If the government unduly keep practices and policies from the people, they cannot consent to them. It seems that Dick Cheney prompted and approved breaches in the boundaries set after Watergate. The NSA has been gathering data from the Internet and elsewhere on a wholesale level, starting sometime after 9/11/2001. Edward Snowden revealed this secret and has done us a service in doing so.

Principles That Have Made America Great

America was and is great not because of our birthright or the land we live on. We are great as far as we live by the principles that make us great. Following is a list of some of those principles.

From the Declaration of Independence:


There are truths that are generally evident to humans 

We hold these truths to be self-evident
[Humans] are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights

All men are created equal

All humans are created with equal potential for greatness.

Unalienable Rights

Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness

Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed

If the government unduly keep practices and policies from the people, they cannot consent to them.

People have a right to alter, abolish and institute new Government

"whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness"

Bullard Road Diet

In Aug 2015, the city of Surprise put Bullard Avenue on a road diet. It was narrowed from 4 lanes to 2 lane of auto traffic. A glof cart lane was added and the bike lane was expanded. In this article, I am listing the for and against argument for keeping this arrangement.

Against

Two lanes cannot possibly be better at moving traffic faster than four lanes. During the school peak times, the right lanes will be used as ad-hoc right turn lanes because through traffic will tend to stay in the left lane.

Two lanes are not safer than 4. Impatient drivers may choose to drive in the golf cart and bike lanes to get around those going the speed limit. This may put at risk vehicles in the right lanes.


For

It may encourage more people to use the bike lanes, as long as they feel they are safe to use. Instead of waiting in car lines to drop off or pick up kids, children may bike to and from school.

The gold cart lane may be usable by small cars. It may encourage the use of these.

If the community accepts the road diet, the culture of living at a balanced rate may develop. We may just enjoy our drives rather than racing to get to point B.

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Friday, August 28, 2015

Snowden and United States of Secrets

On May 13 & May 20, 2014 Frontline aired United States of Secrets. It ends with the many and detailed secrets about how the US government violated privacy measures in law and in the constitution. Whatever security problems that may have come from the secrets he revealed is outweighed by the light he is shining on our own government.

It is currently available to watch on Netflix.

AirDroid vs. Google Voice

AirDroid seems to have everything I ever wanted Google Voice to give me. And I get to use my actual number instead of another one forwarding to my real number.