Reason Morning Links

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• Dueling Bush v. Gore superlawyers Ted Olsen and David Boies team up to mount a federal challenge to California's ban on gay marriage.

• So far, states hit hardest by the recession are getting very little of the federal stimulus money.

• Obama orders comprehensive review of government secrecy policies.

• Nation's new "cyber security czar" will be given "broad mandate" to regulate both public and private networks.

• Why shutting down Craigslist's "Erotic Services" section could make prostitution more dangerous, and make it more difficult for police to solve cases where prostitutes have been harmed.

• Virginia's DMV bans smiling. Having spent way too much time there, I can tell you that by the time you're finally ready for your license photo, there's usually very little reason to smile, anyway.

NEXT: Identity Politics, Left and Right

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  1. Virginia’s DMV bans smiling. Having spent way too much time there, I can tell you that by the time you’re finally ready for your license photo, there’s usually very little reason to smile, anyway.

    When i lived in South Korea, I was planning on doing some travelling around asia and decided to have some extra pasport photos taken in case I lost my passport. I went to a local photo place and smiled for the camera.

    “Mouth down, please” the photographer said with her limited English. Koreans take their phtotographs like their posing for an Easter Island statue.

    Incidentally, Fairfax county, VA has the fourth largest population of Koreans outside of Korea. So I think we know who pulled the strings on this latest initiative: the Jews.

  2. Yo, fuck the Virginia DMV. When my VA license comes up for renewal, i won’t be smiling, but i will have a Burger King crown. THIS IS NOT NEGOTIABLE, VIRGINIA

  3. That money “is needed nowhere more than it is needed in Michigan,” says Leslee Fritz, a spokeswoman for the Michigan Economic Recovery Office, which is coordinating stimulus efforts in that state. She said officials are generally satisfied with the pace of federal aid, but added, “We certainly feel very intensely the need to move quickly.”

    Michigan…..

    Didn’t I read something in the papers about how the government has given somewhere in the neighborhood of twenty five billion dollars to certain businesses in Michigan?

    How much “stimulus” does this stupid cow need?

  4. Boies can rot in hell for his involvement with the SCO case.

  5. I’ve been meaning for a while to trade in my MD license for VA’s. I take crappy pictures anyway. Now I’ll have an excuse.

  6. Turned 21 on a Sunday and I was so hungover Monday, I was running late to the DMV. (Small town, only four hour window for a license.) Scruffy half-beard, slicked back wet hair and a shirt from the night before I didn’t realize had vomit on it. Until I got a new one at 25 I looked like the corpse of a meth dealer on my ID. Might have got me out of a few tickets: “Sweet fuck, you just look like that?!?”

  7. I used to travel regularly to Moscow in the 90’s. The Russian government was waging a campaign to get officials to smile when conducting business with the public.

    Throughout the Soviet era it was forbidden to smile in photographs for official identification and that carried over to no one smiling at all during official business.

    Just another way we are busy turing the USA into the old USSR.

  8. They just did the same ban on smiles here in IN.

    Also, in Soviet Russia…nobody smiles.

  9. Also, in Soviet Russia…nobody smiles in public.

  10. Obama orders comprehensive review of government secrecy policies. Missing from link: Will decide they need to be beefed up.

    And, really Balko? You’re complaining about the Virginia DMV? As a refugee from CA, I can assure you that the Virginia DMV is like being rolled in honey and roses, then being licked clean by Reese Witherspoon in comparison.

  11. Had to get a new DL this year. Filled out the forms, paide the fee, took the vision test, took the photo (encouraged to smile), and got the license in under 15 minutes.

  12. Goddammit, stop putting “gay” in the post. I’m getting sick of ads making me scarcely-resistible offers to find sexy gay singles in my area.

  13. “Every aspect of our lives must be subjected to an inventory”

    – Nancy Pelosi

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hLcZ2jQ4mu4rd7XlB3hetiVn1qbAD98F32AG0

  14. “And, really Balko? You’re complaining about the Virginia DMV? As a refugee from CA, I can assure you that the Virginia DMV is like being rolled in honey and roses, then being licked clean by Reese Witherspoon in comparison.”

    License renewal at the Hennepin County (Minneapolis) DMV? In and out in under 8 minutes.

  15. “Every aspect of our lives must be subjected to an inventory” – Nancy Pelosi

    O’Rly, Nancy? Rly? We’ll see about that.

    This might take awhile… so I’m going to let you guys go get lunch first.

  16. ? Obama orders comprehensive review of government secrecy policies.

    Comprehensive review of Iraq/Afghanistan: stay the course.

    Comprehensive review of Abu Ghraib images: the world isn’t ready to know.

    Comprehensive review of Guantanamo Bay detainees: Maybe sorta close it someday, but keep some people detained without charge or trial indefinitely.

    Any bets on how the great hand of Change will leave this situation?

  17. Couple: County Trying To Stop Home Bible Studies

    SAN DIEGO — A local pastor and his wife claim they were interrogated by a San Diego County official, who then threatened them with escalating fines if they continued to hold bible studies in their home, 10News reported.

    Attorney Dean Broyles of The Western Center For Law & Policy was shocked with what happened to the pastor and his wife.

    Broyles said, “The county asked, ‘Do you have a regular meeting in your home?’ She said, ‘Yes.’ ‘Do you say amen?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Do you pray?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Do you say praise the Lord?’ ‘Yes.’

    The county employee notified the couple that the small bible study, with an average of 15 people attending, was in violation of county regulations, according to Broyles.

    Broyles said a few days later the couple received a written warning that listed “unlawful use of land” and told them to “stop religious assembly or apply for a major use permit” — a process that could cost tens of thousands of dollars.

    More at:

    http://www.10news.com/news/19562217/detail.html

  18. Try the DMV in DC, it rules. Last time it took me under ten minutes (I checked) to get my license renewed and my registration renewed.

  19. Two thoughts on the Smile versus No Smile fooferah:

    First – claim that your religion requires you to smile for a photograph. Mumble something about “otherwise the photographer can steal your soul”. If SHE can wear a burka, I can smile.

    Second – ALWAYS have your DMV photo taken when you are seriously intoxicated. Smile or no smile, at least when you get pulled over on one of those nights when perhaps you’ve had too much to drink, the trooper will think that look on your face is normal, rather than as a result of alcohol.

    CB

  20. ? Dueling Bush v. Gore superlawyers Ted Olsen and David Boies team up to mount a federal challenge to California’s ban on gay marriage.

    Allow me to recap.
    – Gay marriage was nor recognized in California for over 150 years.
    – The California Supreme Court foung that to be unconstitutional under the California constitution.
    – The voters of California then amended the California constitution to specifically restrict marriage to opposite sex couples.
    – The California Supreme Court the decides that the constitutional amendment approved by the voters is valid but same sex marriages performed prior to the amendments adoption will still be recognized.
    – Marriage laws have been traditionally left to the individual states.
    – The federal government, with SCOTUS backing, has long discriminated against gays.

    And attorneys wonder why people hate fucking lawyers.

    ? So far, states hit hardest by the recession are getting very little of the federal stimulus money.

    I would like to remind the Chosen One that the stimulus package is entirely his ball of wax. Anything and everything that is fucked up about it can and will be laid at this administrations doorstep.

    ? Obama orders comprehensive review of government secrecy policies.

    We heard what you campaigned on. We libertarians will be watching to see if actions match rhetoric. You get no free pass on this, I’m warning ya.

  21. Is smirking still OK?

  22. Far from unregulated public sex, each interaction had to begin with a few e-mails and, often, a light background check.

    Ummm, most Craigslist erotic services ads bluntly stated that they would ignore emails, and said to call them. And to not discuss anything explicit in said phone call.

    Emails leave an electronic trail that the PO-lice can use against you. Vague innuendo in phone calls — not so much.

    But, yeah, shutting down the Erotic Services section is gonna result in less safe working conditions for hookers. It isn’t going to stop actual prostitution — nothing will, short of a North Korean Orwellian police state monitoring your every move.

  23. Dueling Bush v. Gore superlawyers Ted Olsen and David Boies team up to mount a federal challenge to California’s ban on gay marriage.

    FWIW, he’s actually an “-on” Olson.

  24. “short of a North Korean Orwellian police state monitoring your every move.”

    Coming soon to a country near you. Don’t miss it!

    “EVERY ASPECT OF OUR LIVES MUST BE SUBJECTED TO INVENTORY” — Nancy Pelosi

  25. –> Living Green 10:29 am

    If you guys think you’ve got it bad, just remember:

    Somewhere, there is a _Mr._ Pelosi.

  26. I’m guessing President Obama is limiting that scrutiny of secrecy policies to documents originating between 2000 and 2008 only.

  27. “””Somewhere, there is a _Mr._ Pelosi.”””

    And the Mrs probably inventories every aspect of his life too.

    With or without Pelosi and her statements, we are already on that path and have been for sometime. Valued customer cards, Itemized electronic purchases, video cameras, EZ pass toll collections, your paycheck, cell phone, the list goes on and on. All we need is a system that can track who’s in your car, and it’s every move. Something like roads becoming privatized toll roads where you’re charged by the mile.

  28. The future of investigations will include data from cell towers and/or your RFID ID card. The system will know where you are 24/7. When a crime happens they will pull up a list of everyone within a radius giving them a list of possible witnesses. Canvanssing almost goes out the door. It would save a lot of time and effort.

    It’s not right around the corner, I’ll give it about 40 years. The new Homeland Security definition of privacy will have sunk in.

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