Nevada Senate Bill 444 – Groundhog Day

May 27, 2015

On SB444 – Wynn Resorts’ lobbyist proposed a compromise. The compromise was reasonable. We might not have liked it, but there was no reason not to agree to the compromise.

The Senate did not agree to the compromise.

Now it is back to the Assembly. But, the Assembly has been a bipartisan body of reason on SB444.

How you can help stop SB444.

1. Go to this page.

2. Enter “SB444″ without any spaces or use the drop down menu and scroll aa.

3. Click the “Get Bill Information” button.

Make sure you comment on SB444 (not AB) and choose the April 14 version from the drop down menu.

Make sure you comment on SB444 (not AB) and choose the April 14 version from the drop down menu.

4. Type in your comments.

5. Enter your name and address, which is kept confidential.

6. Click submit.

What if you don’t want to post a comment using your real address?

No problem.

You can signal boost this article or any other articles on Twitter under the #SB444 or #StopSB444 hash tags.

Click here to go to Twitter to signal boost articles opposing censorship.

Even better – write to your assembly member or to Governor Sandoval

To write to your Assembly Member, follow these steps:

1. Find out who your assembly member is by using this interactive map.

2. Or look here – if you already know.

3. Write them an email or a letter about how you feel toward SB444

If you want a short tutorial on the different sides of this debate, watch below:

My Testimony

And this is the guy pushing to gut Nevada’s Anti-SLAPP law.

(Note, this is an edited version. My prior version was vituperative and immature, and I have edited it to remove those elements)

Il Soldato — Natale C. Misuraca

May 24, 2015


This is a re-run, but I watched a lot of re-runs with my grandfather, Natale. One of my favorite parts of doing so was how he would sit in silence, but then point out which actors in the movie were dead. And, he would laugh his ass off at any movie that had a monkey in it.

If Papa was a film critic, his only reviews would be how many monkeys were in it and if they were funny, and how many actors in it were dead. “The Papa Scale.”

Anyhow, this story has no monkeys, but the main character is, indeed, dead. So, as you start reading, point to his picture and say “ohhh, he’s dead.” That’s how he would have read it.

With that introduction, I bring you the Memorial Day rerun of “Il Soldato” – the story about my favorite war hero ever, Natale.

Originally posted on The Legal Satyricon:

Meeeeeee what handsome!!!! Pvt. Natale Misuraca Today being Memorial Day, I thought I’d write about my favorite war hero, my grandfather Natale Misuraca – or as we all knew him, “Papa.”

Natale Misuraca was born in Boston to immigrants from Terrasini, Sicily. Like most Terrasinese, his family wound up in Gloucester, Massachusetts—a town where they could replicate the fishing culture they left behind in Sicily.

Given how many Sicilians settled in Gloucester, they retained their distinct identity. In fact, despite born in the United States, my grandfather always spoke English as if it were his second language.

From what I know of his childhood, it wasn’t easy. He was one of 13 siblings, and the Great Depression was not kind to them. Although nobody ever starved to death, hunger knew their names, where they lived, and visited frequently. Gloucester being a fishing town, there was always some food available at the docks, and…

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Dancing Man

May 24, 2015

If aliens are watching us, and trying to decide whether our planet should remain where it is, or be destroyed to make way for an intergalactic bypass, I hope they see this story — because they might just move the bypass if they do. Maybe. As long as we can keep them from finding out about the Palins.

The right thing to say…

May 22, 2015

Las Vegas lawyer, Barry Levinson, after getting sentenced to jail.

“I embarrassed Las Vegas. I let everybody down,” he said. “I accept responsibility for what happened. It’s my fault. I made the mistakes. I’m paying for it.” (source)

Not excusing his conduct, but from a public relations standpoint, that’s how you handle it.

Eu Sou Metzker

May 21, 2015

Yet another fatal attack on a blogger. This one, Evany José Metzker.

Evany José Metzker

Evany José Metzker

Metzker was known for his in-depth investigations of political corruption in Brazil and also for his blog titled ‘Coruja do Vale’ (The Owl of the Valley). He was found late Monday in the poverty-stricken town of Padre Paraíso located in the northeast state of Minas Gerais. Various local media outlets report that Metzker was stripped half naked, decapitated, with his hands tied behind his back. His body had clear signs of torture, and his head, located almost 330 feet away from his body, had been scalped.

Metzker was missing for several days and colleagues state that he was in the Minas Gerais region investigating child prostitution and drug trafficking rings. His credit cards, check book and ID were all found near his body, suggesting this was a crime of intimidation or retaliation. Metzker received death threats before, though it’s unclear if any were related to his current investigation.

According to Reporters without Borders, behind Mexico and Colombia, Brazil is ranked as the third most dangerous country for journalists in Latin America. (,47028.html) Today, the news of blogger Evany José Metzker’s murder is a gruesome reminder of how real the threats are in a country many associate with only cold caipirinhas and a sunny Copacabana.

Our deepest sympathies go out to his family, friends, and colleagues. Brazil, Latin America’s most populous country with over 200 million, faces an extremely turbulent future so long as the climate of the free press has a cloud of barbaric terror looming over it. Rest in Slack Mr. Metzker, the latest blogger to give his life in the name of freedom of expression.

I sincerely hope that a dozen Brazilian bloggers rise to duplicate his efforts. Let them try and blow out the candle of the free press — and let that wind just fan the flames higher. See Why you should speak up for slain blogger.

Sanity Restored: Garcia v. Google en banc decision

May 18, 2015

Today, the Ninth Circuit issued its long anticipated en banc opinion regarding the matter of Garcia v. Google, affirming the district court’s denial of summary judgment and solidifying longstanding principles of copyright history and law.

The facts of this one are ugly and bizarre. After the Benghazi attacks that took place on September 11th, 2012, where Islamic militants killed several members of the U.S. Government, the press and the American public were in search of answers. After all, this was a possible terrorist attack on the anniversary of 9/11, just weeks before an upcoming Presidential election. If there was ever a dog to wag…

Somehow, someway, the media reported that rather than an organized terrorist attack, this act of violence was the byproduct of a spontaneous protest that came about after a group of rogue Muslims took offense to a YouTube video.

The video in question was titled “The Innocence of Muslims” and portrayed the Prophet Mohammed in a critical manner. This claim was later proven to be false, but once the word was out about this film, the sword of Islam began poking around at those purportedly involved with its production.

One actress in particular, Cindy Garcia, was completely in shock as she never agreed to star in the “Innocence of Muslims” and now found herself bombarded with death threats. After her life had been threatened by radical fundamentalists, Ms. Garcia found out that a greasy producer (now in jail) had taken her five second performance originally produced for another film titled “Desert Warrior”, and used it without her consent in the “Innocence of Muslims.”

Fearing for her life, Garcia requested that Google remove the film from all its platforms, including YouTube. She insisted that she had a copyright interest in her five-second performance, a claim that had no basis from the onset. However, because of the barbaric circumstances that surrounded her plea, it attracted more attention than was ever intended or warranted.

As the Ninth Circuit correctly noted today, copyright protection is afforded to authors of creative works, not those who merely have a passive role in their making. Section of 102(a) the Copyright Act requires an “original work of authorship fixed in any tangible medium.”

Garcia’s claim was that the “Innocence of Muslims” infringed her audio-visual dramatic performance. The problem with this lies in the fact that her audio-visual performance itself doesn’t meet the statutory requirements laid out in § 102(a). The fixation required by the Copyright Act must be done “by or under the authority of the author.” Garcia was not the author of her performance. She was an actress for hire who was without question swindled, but nonetheless never promoted to the director’s chair.

Allowing someone in Garcia’s position to assert a copyright interest could have set off a suicide bomb for a wide array of content producers. Under Garcia’s train of thought, a costume designer or a background extra could have exercised their illusory rights if they didn’t agree with the final product, something that copyright law does not afford.

Furthermore, the core of Garcia’s desire in filing this suit was to get the video removed from YouTube. The court recognized this in its opinion but rightly noted that the Copyright Act is not the proper tool for this purpose. To the contrary, copyright was intended by the Framers to be an engine of free expression. While it may be easy for any of us to humanize with Garcia’s cause from a privacy, fraud, or false light perspective, the rights granted by copyright were never designed to serve as an instrument for suppression of speech, as justified as that suppression may be.

Granting Garcia’s claim would have essentially declared jihad on the history and principles that copyright law was founded on, not too mention issued a fatwa on decades of copyright case law. Nice to see the Ninth Circuit mend this mess.

How you talk to (shitty) journalists

May 16, 2015

Seymour Hersh rips the ass out of Isaac Chotiner. (source)


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