Sunday, November 28, 2010

Internet Censorship Halted -- Yet Govt Still Shutting Down Websites reports progress on the internet censorship bill that we previously reported:

On November 18, 2010, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to send the Internet blacklist bill to the full Senate, but it was quickly stopped by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) who denounced it as "a bunker-buster cluster bomb" aimed at the Internet and pledged to "do everything I can to take the necessary steps to stop it from passing the U.S. Senate."

Wyden's opposition practically guarantees the bill is dead this year -- and next year the new Congress will have to reintroduce the bill and start all over again. But even that might not happen: Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Hollywood's own senator, told the committee that even she was uncomfortable with the Internet censorship portion of the bill and hoped it could be removed when they took it up again next year!

This is incredible -- and all thanks to you. Just a month ago, the Senate was planning to pass this bill unanimously; now even the senator from Hollywood is backing away from it. But this fight is far from over -- next year, there's going to be hearings, negotiations, and even more crucial votes. We need to be there, continuing to fight.

Can you chip in a couple bucks so we can keep our lobbyist in DC?

We're doing everything we can: working with key staffers to remove the most egregious parts of the bill, lobbying more members of Congress to speak out against this bill, and insisting on hearings so the whole Senate can learn about how dangerous this is. And, of course, we'll keep working with you to make sure more people hear about this bill and tell their senators.

Keep on fighting,

-- Aaron Swartz, David Segal, and the Demand Progress team

P.S. Are you as outraged as we are at those new TSA scanners? Click here to write a letter to your state legislators asking them to ban the practice. We've already gotten a bill introduced in New York -- will your state be next?


Although the fed's latest internet censorship attempt has failed (for now), they're still shutting down internet sites suspected of piracy, despite a lack of evidence.

As with federal asset forfeiture laws, with suspected "internet piracy" it's guilty until proven innocent.

Once again, the feds are trashing the Constitution.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Los Angeles Libertarians -- Participate in National Opt Day!

Forwarded by Angela Keaton:

Hello We Won't Fly - Los Angeles Unscannables.

This message is going out to the Meetup as well as the Facebook group. Thank you all for stepping up. Please join both groups and continue to spread the word those not yet involved.

My name is Hagen Gilbert and I'm working with Nick Hankoff to keep this a smooth and successful operation. National Opt-Out Day is Wednesday, November 24th, 2010. Here's the layout:

Where we're going: On Opt-Out Day Carpoolers should meet at Nick's place at 6 a.m. Nick and I will drive a total of 8 passengers to the airport. If you would like to get a ride with one of us, please contact one of us ASAP. Everybody participating on this day is expected at LAX at 7 a.m. We will be raising awareness about the naked scanners from directly outside the airport. It shouldn't take long to hand out all our materials and get one or two media interviews then celebrate with real breakfast somewhere.

What to bring: The best thing you can bring is a camera. The more of those, the merrier. Please do not bring large signs as we may be construed as a protest group. This is not a protest. Nick and I will supply handouts. Right now we are planning on handing out approximately 100 Reason magazines along with as many fliers as I can get printed. The fliers can be viewed here.

How to act: Smile and be happy! It is the holiday season after all and it will be National Opt-Out Day! By cheerfully saying "Happy National Opt-Out Day! Here's a free magazine to read!" you will attract more people’s curiosity about what’s going on. Once the magazine is in their hand, they will also have a copy of the flier (linked above). Feel free to add "You have a right to opt-out, read the flier before you go through any naked body scanner!"or something like that.

Likely you won't have much time at all as people hustle to their destination, but our objective on this day is to raise awareness about the TSA and (AIT) Advanced Imaging Technology, and how it affects people's health, family, security, and privacy. Our mission with Opt Out Day is for the expressed purpose above, it is NOT to raise awareness about 9/11 or other topics of concern.

We Won't Fly is emphasizing three major points:

1. Security

Security is important for everyone, but the new techniques being used by the TSA offer no improved security while it does entail the loss of personal privacy. A trade off that is not only unacceptable but continues the security theater that actually endangers us more than protects us.

2. Privacy

Strip searches and/or sexual assault on you or your family are a violation of the 4th amendment and should not be a requirement for air travel.

3. TSA

TSA screeners may even be at a higher health risk from these machines due to their constant radiation exposure. Unfortunately those working for $10/hr are not getting the whole truth from their employer.

As always, frequent We Won't Fly and Opt Out Day for continued information. Also feel free to Contact me or Nick with questions or ideas or anything that can help us with our endeavor.


Hagen Gilbert, hagenshape at gmail dot com

Nick Hankoff, nhankoff at gmail dot com

Studio City Peace Vigil -- Every Friday

Forwarded by Angela Keaton (who adds. "Highly recommend Frank Dorrel's Addicted to War List for the So. Cal area"):

Eight Year Anniversary for Studio City Peace Vigil

This FRIDAY, November 19th, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Neighbors for Peace & Justice, San Fernando Valley

Meet at NE corner intersection of Ventura and Laurel Canyon Blvds. Park behind the bank.

Eight years on the corner protestin' war and occupation. Every Friday, since November 2002. Banners, candles, bring your signs or use ours. Be there to demand an end to endless war. Bring All the troops home NOW!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Fight Internet Censorship/Blacklist -- Congress Votes November 16th


Congress is bringing back the Internet blacklist bill for a vote on Thursday -- just a week from now! We've spent the week meeting people in DC and I can tell you our petition is definitely making a difference. This bill was supposed to pass without objection, but now even Politico is calling it "hotly debated" -- all thanks to you.

We've found the most effective way to get through to senators is for constituents to call in to Congress.

Remember, this bill--in blatant violation of the Constitution--would let the Attorney General create a blacklist of websites that every American ISP would be required to block. Wikileaks, YouTube, and others are all at risk. Human rights advocates, constitutional law experts, and the people who invented the Internet have all spoken out against this bill -- but some of the most powerful industries in the country are demanding that Congress rush it through. The music industry is even having all of their employees call Congress to pose as citizens in support of the bill.

-- Aaron Swartz, David Segal, and the Demand Progress team

P.S. Can you please forward our petition to your friends? So far over 250,000 people have signed. Can you help us hit 300,000 before the vote?


The music industry is supporting this bill, doubtless to make it easier to take down "pirate" sites. But if this bill passes, it can be used to censor any site that the military, or any politically well-connected group, wants to censor.

Another example of how over-broad intellectual property protection threatens free speech.


Monday, November 08, 2010

KHC Member Thomas M. Sipos Interviewed on "Horror Film Aesthetics"

Longtime KHC attendee Thomas M. Sipos has been interviewed by Theofantastique regarding his book, Horror Film Aesthetics.

Read the interview for a free peek into Sipos's views on the subject.

Or buy the book at!

Friday, November 05, 2010

Libertarian Party of Los Angeles Honors Richard (Dick) E. Venable

On October 27, 2010, the Libertarian Party of Los Angeles County announced the resolution in memory for Richard E. Venable, who passed away at the age 84 on October 20, 2010. The resolution was passed by acclimation at the monthly meeting of LPLAC Monday evening.

The resolution reads:

"Whereas Richard E. Venable was a dedicated champion of the libertarian cause and provided dependable service to the Libertarian Party, particularly at the statewide level and, notably as the longtime editor and publisher of the Los Angeles Libertarian newsletter.

"Whereas in that capacity, he was open-minded and allowed the expression of differing viewpoints from anyone willing to submit an article for publication--as long as it was not too long in coming past the deadline.

"Whereas the Libertarian Party of Los Angeles County was blessed by his steady stewardship for many years.

"Therefore, let it be known that Dick's calm, quiet, good-humored presence, his refinement, generosity, understanding, and wisdom will be missed at conventions, from national to local. Furthermore his absence will be felt at supper clubs, at other regional events, and in our mailboxes (both electronic and otherwise).

"Therefore the Libertarian Party of Los Angeles County wishes to express our deepest sympathy to Dick's and Gail Lightfoot's families."

Passed by acclimation this 25th day of October 2010.