transparent freedom

Yale historian, professor, and Holocaust expert Timothy Snyder shared the following powerful thoughts:

Americans are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or communism. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience. Now is a good time to do so. Here are twenty lessons from the twentieth century, adapted to the circumstances of today.

1. Do not obey in advance. Much of the power of authoritarianism is freely given. In times like these, individuals think ahead about what a more repressive government will want, and then start to do it without being asked. You’ve already done this, haven’t you? Stop. Anticipatory obedience teaches authorities what is possible and accelerates unfreedom.

2. Defend an institution. Follow the courts or the media, or a court or a newspaper. Do not speak of “our institutions” unless you are making them yours by acting on their behalf. Institutions don’t protect themselves. They go down like dominoes unless each is defended from the beginning.

3. Recall professional ethics. When the leaders of state set a negative example, professional commitments to just practice become much more important. It is hard to break a rule-of-law state without lawyers, and it is hard to have show trials without judges.

4. When listening to politicians, distinguish certain words. Look out for the expansive use of “terrorism” and “extremism.” Be alive to the fatal notions of “exception” and “emergency.” Be angry about the treacherous use of patriotic vocabulary.

5. Be calm when the unthinkable arrives. When the terrorist attack comes, remember that all authoritarians at all times either await or plan such events in order to consolidate power. Think of the Reichstag fire. The sudden disaster that requires the end of the balance of power, the end of opposition parties, and so on, is the oldest trick in the Hitlerian book. Don’t fall for it.

6. Be kind to our language. Avoid pronouncing the phrases everyone else does. Think up your own way of speaking, even if only to convey that thing you think everyone is saying. (Don’t use the internet before bed. Charge your gadgets away from your bedroom, and read.) What to read? Perhaps “The Power of the Powerless” by Václav Havel, 1984 by George Orwell, The Captive Mind by Czesław Milosz, The Rebel by Albert Camus, The Origins of Totalitarianism by Hannah Arendt, or Nothing is True and Everything is Possible by Peter Pomerantsev.

7. Stand out. Someone has to. It is easy, in words and deeds, to follow along. It can feel strange to do or say something different. But without that unease, there is no freedom. And the moment you set an example, the spell of the status quo is broken, and others will follow.

8. Believe in truth. To abandon facts is to abandon freedom. If nothing is true, then no one can criticize power, because there is no basis upon which to do so. If nothing is true, then all is spectacle. The biggest wallet pays for the most blinding lights.

9. Investigate. Figure things out for yourself. Spend more time with long articles. Subsidize investigative journalism by subscribing to print media. Realize that some of what is on your screen is there to harm you. Bookmark PropOrNot or other sites that investigate foreign propaganda pushes.

10. Practice corporeal politics. Power wants your body softening in your chair and your emotions dissipating on the screen. Get outside. Put your body in unfamiliar places with unfamiliar people. Make new friends and march with them.

11. Make eye contact and small talk. This is not just polite. It is a way to stay in touch with your surroundings, break down unnecessary social barriers, and come to understand whom you should and should not trust. If we enter a culture of denunciation, you will want to know the psychological landscape of your daily life.

12. Take responsibility for the face of the world. Notice the swastikas and the other signs of hate. Do not look away and do not get used to them. Remove them yourself and set an example for others to do so.

13. Hinder the one-party state. The parties that took over states were once something else. They exploited a historical moment to make political life impossible for their rivals. Vote in local and state elections while you can.

14. Give regularly to good causes, if you can. Pick a charity and set up autopay. Then you will know that you have made a free choice that is supporting civil society helping others doing something good.

15. Establish a private life. Nastier rulers will use what they know about you to push you around. Scrub your computer of malware. Remember that email is skywriting. Consider using alternative forms of the internet, or simply using it less. Have personal exchanges in person. For the same reason, resolve any legal trouble. Authoritarianism works as a blackmail state, looking for the hook on which to hang you. Try not to have too many hooks.

16. Learn from others in other countries. Keep up your friendships abroad, or make new friends abroad. The present difficulties here are an element of a general trend. And no country is going to find a solution by itself. Make sure you and your family have passports.

17. Watch out for the paramilitaries. When the men with guns who have always claimed to be against the system start wearing uniforms and marching around with torches and pictures of a Leader, the end is nigh. When the pro-Leader paramilitary and the official police and military intermingle, the game is over.

18. Be reflective if you must be armed. If you carry a weapon in public service, God bless you and keep you. But know that evils of the past involved policemen and soldiers finding themselves, one day, doing irregular things. Be ready to say no. (If you do not know what this means, contact the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and ask about training in professional ethics.)

19. Be as courageous as you can. If none of us is prepared to die for freedom, then all of us will die in unfreedom.

20. Be a patriot. The [new] president is not. Set a good example of what America means for the generations to come. They will need it.

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Shoutout to @nxymxrjr for sharing the larger HQ versions of these! I didn’t notice at first just how much bigger they were but once I saved the images to my laptop and saw these were huge I was like “god yes!” 

I don’t know about anyone else but when it comes to edits the bigger the transparent the more freedom there is, whereas with smaller transparents you’re restricted to the size it comes (which suuuuuucks depending on the edit). This also applies to adding transparents to certain themes, sometimes the bigger the better.

Anyway this is all rambling if you end up deleting my caption please at least keep the shoutout portion because Neil was super cool enough to @me the images :)

megalobsterface  asked:

wait shit do you get assigned a class when youre poly, no one ever told me, what if i've been using the wrong spells ;_;

Luckily, polyamory is all about flexibility, transparency, honesty, and freedom, so it would seem to me that you’re able to respec your class and skill points at any time.

I think you should sit your partners down and make a fun game out if it hehe what classes are you guys? 

TO CLARIFY (ABOUT NN)

  People who complain about the entire NN thing being over because of the FCC vote yesterday, HERE’S A HINT: It’s not over. The battle might be lost but the war continues on. In fact, the FCC has LOADS of hoops to just through to make it official, such as law suits from states, being challenged by courts, being challenged in Congress and so forth, plus, the vote? THE VOTE is in terms ILLEGAL. Why? There is an ongoing investigation going on with NY Attorney General with a multi-state lawsuit on the whole fake comment ordeal and the FCC is refusing to cooperate with being transparent since, oh yeah, they were supposed to be transparent due to the Freedom of Information Act (FIA).

  You think this is bad? LOOK in the past power grabs like SOPA, PIPA, CISPA, TPP, ACTA and other reincarnations of the SOPA bill. This is just a minor thing compared to those monsters and if we can call up Congress and tell our reps and senators to pull out the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to throttle the FCC’s attempt, we will have a better chance to keep our NN.

  It ain’t the end of the world, get over yourself.

Faced with growing transparency scandals, White House exempts itself from FOIA regulations

Darn that pesky Freedom of Information Act that gives the American people access to the “most transparent administration in history”!  Obama has a solution: just delete all of the regulations that make the White House subject to FOIA requests.

from USA Today:

The White House is removing a federal regulation that subjects its Office of Administration to the Freedom of Information Act, making official a policy under Presidents Bush and Obama to reject requests for records to that office.

The White House said the cleanup of FOIA regulations is consistent with court rulings that hold that the office is not subject to the transparency law. The office handles, among other things, White House record-keeping duties like the archiving of e-mails.

But the timing of the move raised eyebrows among transparency advocates, coming on National Freedom of Information Day and during a national debate over the preservation of Obama administration records. It’s also Sunshine Week, an effort by news organizations and watchdog groups to highlight issues of government transparency.

“The irony of this being Sunshine Week is not lost on me,” said Anne Weismann of the liberal Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, or CREW.

“It is completely out of step with the president’s supposed commitment to transparency,” she said. “That is a critical office, especially if you want to know, for example, how the White House is dealing with e-mail.”

Unlike other offices within the White House, which were always exempt from the Freedom of Information Act, the Office of Administration responded to FOIA requests for 30 years. Until the Obama administration, watchdog groups on the left and the right used records from the office to shed light on how the White House works.

“This is an office that operated under the FOIA for 30 years, and when it became politically inconvenient, they decided they weren’t subject to the Freedom of Information Act any more,” said Tom Fitton of the conservative Judicial Watch.

read the rest

I know, I know…I can already hear our liberal readers mindlessly reciting that mantra: “It’s Bushs’s fault!”  But that’s only true for Bush himself.  You can’t blame Bush when Obama turns into him!  Actually, Obama has only turned into the worst parts of George W. Bush.  

White House: We’re totally still the “most transparent administration in history”

The Obama administration is bordering on self-parody at this point…

There’s even a throwback to the old “the previous administration” deflection!

Guys, it’s way too be late to be blaming Bush for Obama’s problems.

im-britarded  asked:

Can you draw me some Dan and Phil stuff? I could give you a theme or I can give you complete creative freedom to do whatever you want! Just let me know which you'd like to do! 👬

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU GIVE ME COMPLETE CREATIVE FREEDOM HAHAHAHAha

Enjoy transparent Dan and Phil hugging in their PINOF1 clothes!  ( ´艸`)