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Simon B
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I'm not normally a fan of +Gary Younge but this is a very well written article.

Very well written.

 
A British journalist who lived in the USA for 12 years gives his parting thoughts.
The long read: After 12 years in the US, Gary Younge is preparing to depart – as the country’s racial frictions seem certain to spark another summer of conflict
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Simon B

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Print this out and mail it to your congressman..


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There, +Bernie Sanders and +ActBlue  - I've fixed it for you...
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Much better!
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"For too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens 'as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone'"

Far too long!? Are you reading the same history books +David Cameron. Not long enough and nit tolerant enough. Anything else is distinctly dictatorial you odious little man. Or would this post torch your displeasure and have me locked up?

C.c. +Conservatives
 
"For too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens 'as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone'"

It's sometimes easy to forget that European and American notions of the rule of law aren't all that similar. For all that Cameron's quote sounds alarming, the actual laws being proposed are even more so; they would grant courts the power to "silence any group or individual they believe is undermining democracy or the British values of tolerance and mutual respect," banning them from doing things like speaking in public or forming organizations. 

The UK has always had a very different approach to speech than the US. Libel laws are perhaps the most famous illustration; in the US, truth is an affirmative defense to libel -- that is, if you can prove that what you said is true, then it's not libel. (Which is key to the operation of the press) Under UK law, libel isn't an offense of making false statements which damage someone's reputation; it's about damaging someone's reputation, period, and so "the greater the truth, the greater the libel." This has led the UK to be such a site of "libel tourism" -- that is, of powerful people suing anyone who speaks against them -- that a few years ago, the US decided it would refuse to honor or assist in any UK libel prosecutions whatsoever.

Also relevantly, the UK has its (in)famous "anti-social behavior ordinances," the template for the new proposal, which permit courts to issue injunctions banning individuals or groups from any kind of behavior they consider to be detrimental to society, without a specific law banning it. (The non-uniform application of these laws as a function of things like race and class happens about exactly as you would anticipate)

These are far from the only examples, and what they illustrate is a fundamentally different approach to the rule of law: in European law, the power of the government to rule -- that is, to establish and enforce norms -- takes precedence over any individual rights, whereas in the US, the reverse is the case. 

However, these are far from uncontroversial, even within Europe; as the article below shows, this particular law was stopped for years because the Conservative Party couldn't convince their largest coalition partner (the Lib Dems) that this was a good idea. It was last week's election that gave them the votes to do this without anyone else. The BBC reports that "there is likely to be some opposition in the new Parliament on the grounds that some of the plans could infringe people's right to free speech," but whether this opposition will actually amount to anything remains to be seen.

The main reason I'm highlighting this isn't the global significance of the law, so much as that it's important for understanding the British (and more generally, the European) approach to the law and to individuals. When we read about controversies of policy like the "right to be forgotten" between the two sides, it's worth understanding that in addition to our seeming similarities, there are extreme differences of culture and law at work, too.

Thanks to +Peter da Silva and +Steven Flaeck for the link.
David Cameron is to set out new powers aimed at tackling radicalisation, saying the UK has been a
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I've always been ambivalent about Obamacare, mostly because I didn't think it went far enough.. but this good long read shows the huge benefits and in surprising areas it's changing US healthcare.

If you are not a single-payer advocate after reading this, I'll be interested in knowing why..
Millions of Americans get tests, drugs, and operations that won’t make them better, may cause harm, and cost billions. Credit Illustration by Anna Parini
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Thank the maker!
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Andy Bull from +The Guardian shows why cricketers and cricket writers excel at the finer points in life.

C.c. +Alan Rusbridger, +Simon Burnton
Or The One In Which I Shamelessly Hijack My Own Column
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Simon B

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So..  I know I'm late to the party, but dear +Google what is the point of an Office Suite on my +Android if I cannot even edit documents on the SD card?

Is this this really what +Andy Rubin would have wanted?

+CyanogenMod - the fact you haven't fixed this "feature" is even more depressing..

It's MY SD card and MY device.  I'll decide who writes to it and who doesn't - thank you very much
#progressforprogresssake  
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I've said it before, and I'll say it again.. Cricket writing is as beautiful and breath-taking as the game itself.
If we are to understand Douglas Jardine, the most divisive and controversial cricketer who ever played for England, we must understand his Scottishness
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Ah, a fellow enthusiast...
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Truth be told I'd rather you donated that spare $50 to +Bernie Sanders's campaign. But I guarantee you donating it here will do a lot more to make a real difference a lot sooner.
 
We're at 23% which is fantastic! I am truly appreciative of what we've accomplished so far. With five days remaining of this fundraiser, I'd like to go over what the goal amount covers:

$1000 for first month rent
$1000 for last month rent
$1000 for security deposit

$200-400 for an electric deposit
$200 for a water deposit, sometimes required by the landlord to be paid directly to them
$500-700 professional local movers because my sons and husband cannot physically do this move again after having just done it through trauma in March.

This leaves $700 room for pet fees, extra security, converting a garage or florida room into a bedroom, or other unforeseen expenses. Truthfully, $5000 was an average figure and I'm taking this on the cheap, hoping to score the best place for us for under $1000/month. (However unlikely that seems.) Not meeting the goal might not be a complete dealbreaker if I can cut corners however I can. But $1225 won't get us anywhere, yet. ($1125 from indiegogo plus $100 donated via paypal*).

I looked at a great place today for $900/month with a total move-in cost of $2400. $900 F, $900 L, $600 SD. It was a 2/2/2. Remember, we are a family of six. We are looking for properties we can make work for us, not turnkey ones that already fit. We can't afford the turnkey ones. The landlord didn't even flinch at the mention of my daughter's cats, which is the best part.

So let's please keep it going and keep it building. My family will safely escape this slumlord, we will prevail in court, and we will land in a better situation for our kids. But I need your help with two of those things. We can get closer. We're almost there. Please consider helping if you can.

* All donations will be openly disclosed with donors via paypal and google wallet remaining anonymous by default.
I have been a renter for 20 years and have done well with rent payments, clean depatures, and complete adherence to the law. In January and February of this year, I could not afford rent. By the end of February, which was at the end of the lease anyway, the landlords (who were new to the whole thing
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Yes, siree!  A legend.
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Sharing, because sometimes the visual is more effective than people droning on about it.

Via +Rob Salzman
Hadrian Micciche originally shared to Race Relations:
 
Police-involved killings in the U.S. continue with no end in sight.
The Killed By Police website logged nearly 1,500 documented police-involved deaths between January 1, 2014 and April 30, 2015. This is what the aggregation of those deaths look like over 16 months:

"If this were the spread of an infectious disease, the CDC and public health officials around the nation would be scrambling to find a solution. Yet, as it is, this use of deadly force by police against black and brown people continues virtually unchecked by any individual or institution."

Read more:
http://www.racismreview.com/blog/2015/05/12/police-involved-killings-continue/
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Simon B
 
It is the government. Local government anyway.

Don't forget most police chiefs in America are elected. As are the judges who would hear the cases brought by the public prosecutors who are also often elected.
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Would love to see this in NYC!
 
I say get rid of it.  It's an excuse for restaurants to pay people near slave wages.
The federal minimum wage for tipped employees is $2.13/hour.
http://www.dol.gov/whd/state/tipped.htm

(Thanks: +George Takei via Facebook)
William Street Common has reinvented the tradition restaurant tipping model, and pays all of its employees, servers & dishwashers, $15+ an hour.
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Welcome to the civilised world 😀
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Work
Employment
  • Mobile Payments
    Programme Manager, 2013 - present
  • Mobile Media Consultant/Business Development
    Mobile Media Consultant/Business Development, 2004 - 2012
  • Management Consultant
    Technical, Project and Management Consulting, 1998 - 2008
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Contrived stylistic self-promoting drivel goes here. Contributions welcome!
Introduction
My cover photo is from +Baldur McQueen

Be sure you've found the correct Simon - and if that didn't help you, then move along..  Or circle me anyway. -I don't reshare that much, but- I do comment wildly and widely.  I have recently discovered I do share quite often.  But it's only from a healthy sense of outrage.

My G+ Time-line

I've realised that the only websites I'd care to recommend are .org ones.  Except for this one http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wXkI4t7nuc  I'm not sure what that says about it me, but I put it out there for you. 

If you're into maths, physics, biology, chemistry, computer science, FOSS, economics, flying, mobile web, politics, political science, religion, philosophy, carpentry, brewing and distilling, cricket, soccer, photography, demographics, hacking, social responsibility, or cheese, then circle me - because I will find you.
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Simon B's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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