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Total number of comments: 8 (since 2013-11-28 16:44:30)

Dena Shunra

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  • Jimmy Carter: I send Landmail because of NSA Surveillance "Abuse"
    • I wonder what effect National Security Letters would have on that.

    • Unfortunately, it's not quite that simple. I've received letters that have been opened, with an "oops, sorry we mangled your mail" form letter. I'd probably be less suspicious about them if it weren't for the fact that they were mostly in international communications with people involved with activism in various ways.
      And an artist. But art is inherently seditious, I suppose.

    • Not that using USPS service does any good: " The USPS Has Been Scanning Our Mail For Years" as Consumerist reminds us, here link to

      Using the anthrax letters sent in 2001 as an excuse to read and retain the metadata (envelope) of every single piece of mail sent in the U.S. should go into the dictionary beside the definition of "overkill".

  • Who you Call is Far more Revealing than what you Say: Landau on Gov't Spying (Democracy Now!)
    • Manus-with-the-nifty-owl-avatar, you just asked me which abuses do I know of regarding to a program that is so secret that talking about it is illegal.

      That's very funny.

      Tell me about all the times it was used, we can sort them into two piles - legitimate and abuse.

      Chill? How about freezing the program until it's reviewed?

    • Landau's example is a really great one about how law enforcement could leap to erroneous conclusions on no evidence and then make people's life miserable trying to find corroboration.

      If I'd be at a hospital, getting a mammogram, and later that day my doctor's office calls me to say it's all clear (knowing I'd been worried), and I call the surgeon to ask if I'd left my car keys there, while undressing. Then I go over to the surgeon's office and no, the key are not there, so I call my family (one call each to my husband and each child) to find out if they've seen them.
      Bang, false positive, the NSA starts sending me ads for tamoxifen.

      Being a reasonably creative person, I can construct an alternative narrative for any phone pattern suggested. And that is exactly the problem with metadata - it proves guilt only by association and gives the state free reign to investigate anyone for anything, based on their imagination.

      Terrible idea.

  • Omar Khayyam (19)
    • I'm loving this series of translations with every fiber of my being. "Getting drunk" is *exactly* the right phrase here, for the register chosen.

      Poetry is about people, and the way that an individual experience or perception generalizes to encompass us all. These translations capture this comprehensive humanity to the hilt.

      It's important to keep in mind that the poet's sense is no less poetic for having lived a millennium ago. People then downed shots, and poets talked about it just as much. We do poetry a disservice by oversolemnizing it - and I say that as a poet, a translator, and a translator of poetry.

      Thanks so much, Juan.

  • Omar Khayyam (34)
    • I see. How very Quakerly. (Unprogrammed Friends, as it were.)

      And how very Universalist.

      Thank you for publishing these, I am very much enjoying your translations.

    • So would it be acceptable to see this poem as an acknowledgment of God as so large as to fit in more than one form of worship, such that servitude is seen as a virtue?

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