Saturday, February 27, 2010

Give the Law back to the People

Many years back if one transgressed the local laws one was dealt with locally and swiftly.
Maybe stoned to death or having body parts amputated/cut out.

We've [supposedly] come a long way from such days now that we have courts with a "jury of our peers" and the like, but we've also removed the Law a long way from the people it's meant to protect/serve.

The current binding of the law is resulting in teachers having their authority restricted, being threatened by students with law suits, the medical profession, as well, being too wary of malpractice suits such that they daren't risk an unconventional opinion, and many other situations where threat of law suits or over regulation are reducing our freedoms.

It's not just the shear number of laws that have been made to regulate and supposedly serve us, it's the language they're written in.

Why is it that the laws which should define and protect our society are essentially unintelligible to all but a trained few? A trained few who take huge sums of money of us to lead us through such a minefield!

It all makes me think of what's written on the side of the Bad Transformer in his Police car guise: "To Punish and Enslave."

That's what the law currently does for us.

Well I'd thought this for some time and today I saw a great TED talk: Philip K. Howard: Four ways to fix a broken legal system.

Do yourself a favour, don't just watch this talk, watch TED!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Rural Exodus Metropolis Influx

Now it's long been a noted item that humans have been moving into the cities, more and more every year. 130 a minute apparently. 70 million a year.

Now I've always thought this was a pretty sad thing, much as I have enjoyed living in the city a lot myself for various "good" reasons listed in the video, I've felt that it's done at huge expense to the land those people live on.

Good healthy productive land gets concreted over so people can live together en mass, needing huge amounts of supplies to be shipped into them and creating huge amounts of waste to be removed, usually to a place that becomes something like a cancer on the face of the Earth.

Then I saw Stewart Brand's little piece on Squatter Cities.
This TED video pointed out some interesting things for me, my favourite being that population growth slows (birthrate drops) for those in these Squatter Cities.

Food for thought... I thought.