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07/23/2003 Archived Entry: "Kobe Bryant's accuser"

Using Google, it took me roughly five minutes to find the name, photograph, address, phone number, and email address of the woman who is accusing Kobe Bryant of rape. Given that nationally syndicated radio host Tom Leykis is announcing her name over the airwaves and linking to her photo, it shouldn't have taken me that long. The media, down to the janitorial staff, know her identity and are doing everything short of spelling out the letters of her name in the air with one finger as they broadcast that she graduated from Eagle County High School where she was a varsity cheerleader, she attends the University of North Carolina, etc. etc. Rape shield laws have become utterly unenforceable.

Governor Howard Dean has published 16 pointed questions directed toward President Bush about taking America to war with Iraq. For example, "#2 Mr. President, we need to know why anyone in your Administration would have contemplated using the evidence in the State of the Union after George Tenet personally intervened in October 2002, to have the same evidence removed from the President's October 7th speech. (The Washington Post, Walter Pincus and Mike Allen, 7/13/2003)" The audio of Dean's Introductory Remarks to the questions can be heard in MP3 format (1.5 MB). A petition is being circulated to demand answers.

Thanks for Lee K for forwarding an article by john Stanton that provides original and fascinating analysis of the current political transition. It begins, "The philosopher Plato was right when he opined that democracy ultimately leads to anarchy and then tyranny. But he was wrong to dismiss anarchy which, arguably, is the happy medium between failed democracy and treacherous tyranny. The USA has begun its flirtation with anarchy. But anarchy, like democracy, is anathema to the ruling classes and can’t be tolerated for any length of time. As a result, the ruling classes will create a crisis and will attempt to implement a society as described in Plato’s Republic—an alternative to representative government. The USA will transition from anarchy to a Platonic tyranny sometime during the second term (2004-2008) of George Bush II.That is, unless anarchy takes hold." It concludes, "Godwin’s system of anarchy is all that stands in the way of the tyranny of Plato’s Republic."

Bad news, good news on the privacy front. Bad news: the US has named the day for biometric passports. Frank Moss, deputy assistant secretary for Passport Services has stated, "Our goal is to begin production by October 26, 2004." The production of precisely what? "Current plans call for the new passport books to include a contactless smart chip based on the 14443 standard, with a minimum of 32 Kbytes of EEPROM storage. The chip will contain a compressed full-face image for use as a biometric. European biometric passports, by contrast, are planned to feature both retinal and fingerprint recognition biometrics on their smart cards. For US passports, the image and the passport information stored on the contactless chip will be digitally signed to ensure the integrity of both the data and the passport itself." The good news: snags may hold up government plans. According to experts, "biometrics has proven to be fallible, with evidence available that has shown that wearing glasses can fool an eye scanner, prosthetic make-up can affect face scanners, a sore throat can change a voiceprint and that breathing heavily on a fingerprint scanner can also make prints unrecognisable."

Best to all,

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