Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Misc. News & Comments

In Ireland, they're going to junk the unreliable voting machines and go back to counting paper ballots. So they're going to do democracy right, in Ireland. Why can't we do that in America? [ Ars Technica ]

In Minnesota, the state's highest court has ruled that people convicted of drunk driving on the basis of the Intoxilyzer breath test device are entitled to see the machine's source code, to determine whether it's reliable. It's reminiscent of voting rights activists wanting to see the innards of the machine that counts or miscounts votes. Everybody hates drunk drivers, sure, and this ruling opens a hell of a can of worms, but the principle remains the same and it's a good principle — if the machines' reliability can't be proven then the machines ain't worth diddly.

[ Pioneer Press ]

From the: Sipsey Street Irregulars

Olofson Appeal Rejected: 7th Circuit Confirms No Right To A Fair Trial; However, you are STILL entitled to a fair shootout should you not wish to be railroaded!

7th Circuit Court of Appeals Upholds Right to a Fair Gunfight, if not a Fair Trial.

David Codrea of Gun Rights Examiner reports:

This is bitter medicine for David Olofson and his family and no comfort to the rest of us potential victims of federal excess. However, the Sipsey Street Legal Advisor's analysis of this sorry case points out that even in the absence of a hint of the possibility of a fair trial, you are still entitled to a fair shootout should you not wish to be railroaded on bogus charges without possibility of legal remedy.

Something to think about. I wonder if the 7th Circuit thought about that unintended consequence? You can bet your ass that from here on out every ATF raid party member with half a brain will be thinking about it.

Miranda in the light of Olofson:

  • You have the right to remain silent and refuse to answer questions. Not that it will do you any good. Do you understand?
  • Anything you do say, or we say you say if we have more witnesses than you, will be used against you in a court of law, if we think we can get away with it. Do you understand?
  • You have the right to consult an attorney before speaking to the police and to have an attorney present during questioning now or in the future. You will not have a chance to challenge our lack of standards or scientific method in our lab results and your expert witness will not be allowed to witness anything if we can help it. Do you understand?
  • If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you before any questioning if you wish, not that the sorry bastard will be worth anything or even be quick-witted enough when we deny him exculpatory material because we claim it is tax information. Do you understand?
  • If you decide to answer questions now without an attorney present you will still have the right to stop answering at any time until you talk to an attorney, unless we can scare you by threatening your wife and kids, or find some way to wheedle it out of her at the scene. Do you understand?
  • Knowing and understanding your rights as I have explained them to you, are you willing to answer my questions without an attorney present? Because, remember it won't matter anyway, for your ass is ours. If the facts don't fit our case against you we will trim them. If the lab results come back showing your innocence, we will redo them until they agree with our preconception. If the US Attorney discovers we've messed up, he will ignore it. And if the Appeals Court even sees your case, they will be loathe to overturn it. We do all this to keep our system well-stocked with blackmailed snitches.
  • Do you understand?