Posted by: Ricardo | March 23, 2011

Something Else

Being a Tumblr-denier, despite hosting a barely-law-related legal “blawg” there (though it very quickly became a weird shrine to Joseph Gordon-Levitt – love that guy), I thought I’d add this stuff I’ve been making here. After all, it’s somewhat more related to the stuff that goes on here (read: little to no Joseph Gordon-Levitt).

Here’s the first draft of FUCKYEAHSUPREMECOURT (.tumblr???). It was inspired by a constitutional law lecture about R v. Butler (take that, McGill guide to legal citation!) and the resulting “community standards test” which, long story short, is kind of vague.

Pictures are from free websites that are not the Supreme Court website (though I hear they’re awesome) – apparently I’d need to ask for permission to use their pictures? As if. Am I even allowed to LINK to them? Who knows? Oh. Link!

His judgments are so last century.

Reprints don't do his judgments justice - you totally need to read it in the original text.

Hmm I like her old judgments better.

Hmm I like her old judgments better.

Also, it is surprisingly easy to make glasses-wearing Supreme Court justices look like hipsters. Do they even need the purple hoodie?

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Posted by: Ricardo | March 23, 2011

Something Old

Law school keeps me busy, but never too busy to let my affinity for puns atrophy. Here’s some stuff I made during class (GASP) a few weeks ago.

HOW DO I SHOT FIRST?

If Greedo had just followed the tutorial's instructions, he'd have beaten Han.

I like puns, ok?

Daniel Farady ... Caged. I'm not proud of this pun.

Posted by: Ricardo | November 1, 2010

A Letter Concerning the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear

Why I’m Quitting Fear

Recently, 215,000 of our neighbours to the South rallied in Washington, D.C. in the hopes of ending a long relationship with insanity, and I tagged along for the ride.

For years, host Jon Stewart said, America’s “24-hour politico-pundit-perpetual-panic-conflictinator” has been peddling a product for which reasonableness is irrelevant. People just can’t stop themselves from buying it. It’s a product that never goes away and generally has the effect of making people do or say crazy things. But there is power in it. A lot of power. In fact, entire businesses depend on it.

As you can tell, things got really serious after Kid Rock and Sheryl Crow performed, as they were clearly the reason most people were in attendance and the Rally was dying down after they left.

Crowded on all sides by thousands of strangers and their kooky signs, I realized that even for a foreigner (from a country where tea parties still involve elevated pinkies) there was still something to be learned from the experience.

Looking back at some of the outrage after the recent Bedford decision (concerning Ontario’s prostitution law), for example, it seems we’ve ourselves seen rhetoric take over what could otherwise have been predominantly rational discussion. Some of the public’s most vocal (read: loud) members’ reactions to Omar Khadr’s sentencing seem to have similarly had a drowning-out effect.

At some point or another, we’ve all seen truthiness win out over truth and fear defeat rational thinking. It’s easy to stand behind loud people, if only because their voices don’t carry as much back there. I know I’ve done it in the past; hopefully this isn’t me doing it again.

When Stewart explained the rally’s goal, to restore sanity, I realized, though – this is why thousands came here today, because what he’s arguing is (or at least should be) as inoffensive as it is logical. You have to be crazy to want to preserve insanity, after all.

So I guess what I’m saying is that we should all take Stewart’s invitation to start a love train, to join hands with people from all over the world. I know it’s going to be hard, especially when their opinions differ quite frighteningly from our own, but that’s part of the process of living together and cooperating.

Some say Stewart was too hard on hyper-partisan talking heads (on all parts of the political spectrum) who exaggerate and oversimplify issues and fears at the expense of rational thought. Maybe that’s true, but if you just take another talking head or writer’s word for it, then you’re doin’ it wrong.

If you’re still interested in fear amplification though, here’s a list of people that still do it well: ABC, CBS, AP, the New York Times, National Public Radio, and Anderson Cooper’s tight, black T-shirt. They’ve all won Stephen Colbert’s Fear Award (a naked man running with scissors) for refusing to allow their employees to even attend the Rally or for otherwise disseminating fear effectively, and so they come highly recommended.

As for me, I’ll do my best to welcome all rational arguments with an open mind because I’m certain that some of the best ideas out there aren’t my own.

Sincerely,

Ricardo F. Golec
Sanity Preservationist

Posted by: Ricardo | July 15, 2010

Betrayal :(

I won’t pretend to try too hard for this week’s update; just be grateful you get one and that it’s a day early! It’s been tough coming off 10 days where I had to find time in already-busy days to come up with something and then execute, and it meant pushing a lot of stuff back a little bit. Also, and in a perhaps less-lame excuse, it was my birthday on Monday! Hooray! I can say cryptically (and layeredly!) that I have in this past week caught 22. Party to follow.

The betrayal comes in the form of an unexpected but awesome and now-appreciated gift from my dad: an iPad. This toy, and my similarly unexpected fascination with it, serves to render some of this blog either incredibly ironic or just plain silly. Maybe I’ll change it, maybe I won’t. I’m still not about to run and get a Mac for my ordinary computing needs, but it’s pretty decent for just about everything else it says it does (loving the feeling of power in Godfinger and the awesomeness that is Airvideo). Needless to say, it’s been distracting me quite a bit in my free time. Maybe an emerging series in this blog will be tongue-in-cheek reviews of apps I discover.

Another little gizmo I’ve been experimenting with on the iPad is SketchBook, which apart from being a medium by which actually-talented people have created outstanding works of art (relatively speaking), also pretty much lets me do what I normally do for this blog, but on a handheld computer. So, I present to you the first in what will likely be a continuing contribution type on iCardo, the iPad sketch:

Pedobear approves of Medvedev

Oh, you bet it’s crude. Also, G8 tie-in, yay! This was drawn from pictures I was able to quickly download off a passing bus’ wireless whilst on an actual bus myself, so cut me some slack. Hopefully my proficiency with sketchbook improves a lot quicker than my photoshop skills have.

Posted by: Ricardo | July 8, 2010

1. Thru teh toobs!

Alright, after 10 long days we have reached the end. And, like in a Letterman Top 10, this last one will be the lamest. Thankfully, though, I’m not Letterman, so while this one (hehe, get it? #1 sigh) won’t be in any way funny or satirical (well, maybe a little bit, but not wholly intentionally), it will be poignant and, more importantly for me, realistic.

Spoiler Alert: there be a rant ahead. For those who prefer the illustrated version, skip below to the stars.

<soapbox>

In fact, I’d even go so far as to say that this last one is less a silly suggestion to lampoon the comical wastes of money and time that the G20 brought to Toronto, and is actually more of a legitimate supplication for those who organize these – and other – conferences to smarten up.

Sure, I’ll admit, I’m a self-proclaimed internet nerd. But that doesn’t mean the internet just “doesn’t work” for everyone else. You can do wonderful, great (and sometimes evil!) things in, with, through, and around the internet (occasionally even on top of it, but sometimes it doesn’t like that position all that much and gets antsy). It takes less than 0.20 seconds for google to do a search for “web conferences” and you find the wikipedia article on the growing medium. A few more milliseconds and you come up with a number of interesting websites with different iterations of the emerging technology behind multi-user conferencing over the internet. Here are a few – http://www.ivisit.com/ http://www.megameeting.com/privatebranding.html http://www.conferencegroup.com/video-conference.html

Current technology and average ISP bandwidth capabilities (as far as my less-than-5-minute-total-search found) seem to put the magic number at around 16-18 users with a medium-priced package. That’s certainly more than enough to host the G8. Then of course come the obvious questions about “what you miss out because of the lack of face-to-face interaction.” This is when I point out that these 16-18 simultaneous user programs allow limitless audience members to watch and – through chat programs and email and all sorts of social media – PARTICIPATE. Gone would be many of the “lack of transparency” concerns as the power of the internet allows a near-Athenian level of direct democracy (once you filter out the retards; more on that later).

That’s not even touching on the fact that it is not only socially-unacceptable but also physically impossible for every single person to talk at once and still be heard, even in a conference room in the same country. You don’t need to give all G20 members “speaking power” (ie. a video throne) at all times and at the same time – there are ways to coordinate these sorts of things (speaking lists and camera toggles,  for example) so that at the very least the person who is currently talking is visible. Of course, this is with current, publicly-accessible technology we’re talking about. Surely the LEADERS OF THE WEALTHIEST COUNTRIES could pay for – if not just INVENT – a system that can accommodate video for another 2-4 people to sit simultaneously.

“But Ricardo,” you say, “where will I get my precious photo-ops and fancy state dinners paid by the host country?” Look, if you’ve been looking at this blog at all, you’ll know the beauty of Photoshop. If you’re dying for a picture with Obama, all you have to do is what this guy clearly did. Is KILLING THE ENVIRONMENT with annual decidedly unproductive meetings and WASTING BILLION(S) OF DOLLARS in the process really worth getting a picture with someone? REALLY? As for dinner, order out. If it’s the solidarity of “sharing a meal” that you hunger (ahem) for, then just order the same thing – how about a Matsu Combo Three? It frightens me that someone would even consider the prospect of eating food with another person to be “worth” the burden it places on the environment and the people these people lead.

Speaking of the environment, this annual environmental conference business should be the first to jump ship off these international conventions. The answer to all those little side-shows that they have during the conference is called a “webinar,” and having sat through one myself recently, I have to say they are quite handy and effective. So long as proper etiquette (one person talks at a time, questions are ordered by preference of who asked first, etc., all of which can be controlled easily via IRC or other services like ustream) is expected and followed, I honestly don’t see what is lost by transposing an on-location conference to the internet. This seems especially pertinent in the field of environmental policy, since the irony of thousands of people (mostly reporters) travelling the world to have an indoor meeting about saving the environment seems like it should be the first thing to go by means of adapting to new technology.

And that’s really what it boils down to: I am reasonably certain that no matter what other complaint someone will throw about making this change, I can explain it away with a computer program they haven’t considered or an unwillingness to learn to adapt and change something based – apparently – solely on the notion of tradition. Let the Founding Fathers have their trip to Charlottetown; Stephen Harper doesn’t need to leave his fancy house in Ottawa to have a meeting with Obama anymore – especially if the meeting is going to be as relatively unproductive as the last couple of climate conferences and the G8/G20. If nothing concrete is going to be decided or hammered out, you might as well stay home.

</soapbox>

**********************************************

For those who have stuck out this far, thanks a lot, you’re awesome!! For the ADD crowd (and their hyper-active cousins!), it’s dangerous to go alone, take these pretty pictures!

You bet the First Partners would be all over the live-stream chat servers.

Who better to host/moderate the G8 than Pauly Shore?

Apart from being a joke, this could be a reality. The internet has gained lots of credibility in the recent past, and having a glorified meeting of the minds between world leaders (maybe more inclusive?) happen through this awesome medium would go far towards validating it as a forum for thought and expression. Hell, these guys could’ve done more work, and saved us all much stress/money if they’d just Google Waved the whole thing. I would’ve reinvested all that money saved from Waving the conference into carbon credits to pay back for 35 years of 20th century conferences.

And, more importantly, rather than this beautiful display of free expression as a form of opening windows of communication :

HEAR OUT MY REASONABLE DEMANDS!!!

Civilized conversation ftw!

you can have the brilliant, just-as-enlightening conversations seen in the chat box in the previous image. Instead of wielding ridiculous sound cannons and rubber bullets, the cops would only be in charge of bringing down the banhammer. Hard. You know the youtube commenters are begging for it.

Hard, hammer-like justice!

Laying down the law, one Youtube comment at a time.

And with that, this ordeal is over. See you all next Friday when – BANHAMMER WILLING – weekly updates resume again.

Posted by: Ricardo | July 7, 2010

2. EMP

Not going to lie, I’m phoning this one in, too, but with good reason – planning for #1!

2. EMP

A carefully-placed EMP (NOT-A-BOMB) would be wonderful.

JJ set us up the bomb

The existence of this picture defies logic.

An EMP is perfect if you think about it. How will these rampant protesters tweet about their “totally rad” experiences? If a tree falls in a forest, does it make a sounds? OF COURSE NOT. Science. Likewise, if a protester gets man-handled by a police officer and his fellow hippies don’t have their iPhones out taking pictures or tweeting about it, there’s no way to prove that it happened.  Who are you going to believe? A protester telling you about his friend’s experiences, or a police department that never lies and has absolutely no vested interest in looking like it is in the clear? I thought so.

Of course, there’s the added benefit of shutting down most of the media’s devices (who really carries tape recorders anymore??), which let’s face it, must have been a good 20-40% of the people milling about downtown to begin with. OH NOES, how will we show all these bad things happening?! You don’t, so you sit on the curb and sulk, reducing the number of people crowding around the cops and – by extension – the number of people being attacked by cops. Perfect!

Of course, then the summit itself might not even happen. So then what would they all have to complain about? Exactly!

You've been duckrolled, bitches.

You can tell this entire update was created to lead up to this point.

This post made no sense, of course, but that is in itself a SOCIAL COMMENTARY. In case you missed it back when I started this blog, I write in layers, creating very deep meanings (or, more precisely, I lie about stupid things I say and do in order to make them seem cooler than they really ever could be. This makes me human).

On an unrelated note, Inception looks like it will be a kick-ass movie. No, it will not be Kick-Ass.

Posted by: Ricardo | July 6, 2010

3. Rain

It’s been a long day, so this is me phoning it in.

3. Rain!

“But Ricardo,” you say most know-it-all-ingly, “didn’t it rain on G20 weekend, and yet the protests still happened?” While you are technically right, YOU DIDN’T LET ME FINISH YOU BASTARD.

I’m typing, of course, about a different kind of rain – not the mere water droplets you feel coming from those physics-defying cotton balls in the sky. No, this rain can stop people – especially unemployed protesters who feel the need to justify a misguided government’s poor spending practices by creating a cross between a self-fulfilling prophecy and confirmation bias.

MONY MONY MONY is Billy Idol's ABBA cover band's name.

Who'll stop the rain? Not CCR, definitely.

Hell, I’d certainly stop what I was doing and grab some of that cold, hard cash. Seeing as many of the protesters (especially the violent ones) were rumoured to be from out-of-town, I thought US money would be more fitting, just in case.

“But Ricardo,” you once again exclaim in your nails-on-chalk-board, siren-like voice, “not everyone who protested was poor, nor would they necessarily stop for money!” I hate you so much. For the non-economically-disadvantaged, then,  another effective means of control might be this:

WORSE THAN SWEARING, WORSE THAN CALLING NAMES

Best kind of rain - Chocolate Rain! Om nom nom.

“But that might not be practical,” you, ever the incessant prat, say without even an attempt at masking your mock sincerity. My hatred for you now burns with the intensity of that laser that could cut through thin objects until Lucasarts decided it was a little too much like a lightsaber. Nevertheless, I will indulge your child-like whims with the absolute best kind of chocolate rain and/or “it’s raining men” hallelujah moment:

You're welcome, lady-protesters.

Keep it in your pants, gents.

I am too generous. Having created this last work of beauty, I have … things that require my attention.

Posted by: Ricardo | July 5, 2010

4. Heat!

It’s a scorcher out there today, and apart from necessitating ice cream the heat has also inspired today’s suggested G20 security measures.

4. Heat!

You’ll probably remember from a few previous updates the image of a burning police car during the G20 protests, and something  very peculiar about it. In case scrolling down this blog is too hard, here is an image with the OBVIOUS POINTED OUT FOR YOU.

CAPTAIN OBVIOUS!!

Hint: Look for the red ring!

Notice it now? PEOPLE ARE SCARED OF FIRE! Astonishing, I know. The best part is, it’s not just random plebes and hippies who are scared of fire – politicians and world leaders are, too! Really, everyone but Billy Joel.

The point is, why not harness this people-scaring power for the greater good? If one burning car can make people stand back like that, why not THREE???

We totally started the fire

Crowd-control, for those who hate the environment!

On that line of thought, why not use LUDICROUS AMOUNTS OF FIRE? Like, say, a MEGAVOLCANO!

Starting a megavolcano in downtown Toronto wouldn’t be too hard – it doesn’t even have to be “real”, just real enough to scare the burning pants off people (especially liars, those bastards). This should do.

The science is strong with this movie.

No amount of protesting can stop BURNING HOT (prop) MAGMA!

And of course, this all holds true for the politicians – they’ll be scared off, too! Try landing a helicopter when your pilot is convinced there is lava below you. Not even Obama can do that (please don’t try it, either!).

Posted by: Ricardo | July 4, 2010

5. Disapproval Police

I was considering taking today off, but instead thought I’d be a little offensive!

5. Disapproval Police

The original idea was to combat protests and the G20 summit in general with the completely-HST-free disapproval of the Big Man himself.

God knows He'd be unhappy

Srsly guys, stop it.

But then, of course, that might not really mean anything to people who may not be Christian, or Catholic specifically, so the few police officers who are hired to tell people about the disapproval of [insert deity’s name here] need to be sensitivity-trained – ON HORSEBACK. Really, everything is better on horseback, try it.

Sea-Man to the rescue!

Super Best Friends save the day!

I don’t know about you guys, but when someone tells me that I’ve “really let them down” or “disappointed them” in some way, I try to clean that shit up, posthaste. Maybe that’s all the G20 leaders and protesters needed – some mild derision or a brief rebuke from someone in authority, speaking on behalf of [insert deity’s name here].  As Locke always warned us, though, it’s those crazy Atheists who can still cause problems! Ah!

Posted by: Ricardo | July 3, 2010

6. Hugs

A just-barely-late update for today: this time, it’s hugs! Today was Free Hug Day (one of my favourite days of the year), so the inspiration for today’s suggested G20 security strategy is quite obvious. Hugs are great and require little explanation (unless you just hugged a non-yours child on the street and the parents are looking at you funny!).

6. Hugs

I’d like to see the cop who is brave/stupid enough to arrest these people.

PEACE, LOVE, AND UNDERSTANDING, Costello-style

Drop hugs, not bricks, ppl!

And the cops can join in, too – hugs are BY DEFINITION AND NECESSITY (whether you like it or not) INCLUSIVE. There ain’t no hug like a forced one.

STOP IN THE NAME OF HUG

The Charter is iffy about whether or not hugs count as a form of police detainment under s.10. The US' Miranda rights are much clearer on the subject.

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/christianlapid/4746509028/

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