, but it's just so darn relevant, that I can't help but post it here as well (please
I would STRONGLY recommend everyone here read that. It's excellent. Here's an excerpt:
Because that's exactly what we need to wake up from this slumbering, do-nothing, "occupy everything," stagnant, non-action slump we Americans are in.
"Protest schemes that don't cost the participants any inconvenience, hardship or money remain the most popular, despite their ineffectiveness."
We're a country where people think that...
Boycotting gas for a day makes a difference. It doesn't. Delaying when you buy gas by a day only broadcasts your intentions to oil speculators so they can profit. And the oil still gets purchased a day before or after anyway.
Painstakingly recycling every single shred of garbage in your home makes a difference. It doesn't. Even if you, your neighbors, and everyone you've ever met recycled everything and reduced your waste output to zero, it wouldn't even make an observable impact on overall waste production in the world. Household waste and garden residue account for less than 3% of all waste produced in the US. That's less than the average statistical margin of error, and most people don't even come close to producing zero waste.
Changing your profile picture on Facebook will get people to: A) stop abusing kids B) stop molesting kids C) stop killing kids and D) do anything.
Signing an online petition, or changing the front page of your website to protest SOPA will fix anything.
SOPA is the "Stop Online Piracy Act." It's a shitty piece of legislation put together by puppetmaster lobbyists and politician puppets who don't know IP addresses from their assholes. My problem with this huge online protest against SOPA, and the reason I rarely take part in such protests, is because it doesn't address any problems, only the symptom. The problem isn't this shitty bill, it's the people who sponsored it. So we protest this bill today, bang enough pots and pans to shame a few backers into not letting this bill pass, then what? Those same dipshits who wrote this legislation still have jobs. They're going to try again, and again, and again until some mutation of this legislation passes. They'll sneak it into an appropriation bill while nobody's looking during recess, because there's too much lobbyist money at stake for them not to. We defeat SOPA today, only to face it again tomorrow. It's like trying to stop a cold by blowing your nose. It's time we go after the virus.
There have been many bills attempted (and some passed) like SOPA before it. There's the DMCA act of 1998, PRO-IP Act of 2008, the 2011 Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, and now the PROTECT IP Act of 2012. Think this victory means anything? A new bill gets introduced every year or two like clockwork. Check back in a few years, and there'll be another SOPA or Protect IP Act being squeezed down the lower intestinal tracts of congress. And then what? We black out our websites again like a merry band of idiots?
Raising awareness is a great way of feeling good about yourself without actually doing anything. Be honest with yourself:
How much do you care about SOPA?
Would you be willing to:
Take time off work to go down to Washington DC?
Boycott companies that supported it?
Knock on this dickhead's door and ask him why he introduced such shitty legislation?
Make sure none of these losers get elected ever again?
Harry Reid (D-NV)
Howard Berman (D-CA)
Marsha Blackburn (R-TN)
Mary Bono Mack (R-CA)
Steve Chabot (R-OH)
John Conyers (D-MI)
Ted Deutch (D-FL)
Elton Gallegly (R-CA)
Bob Goodlatte (R-VA)
Timothy Griffin (R-AR)
Dennis A. Ross (R-FL)
Adam Schiff (D-CA)
Lee Terry (R-NE)
Because until or unless you do, all the loud clamoring isn't going to change shit. If you think it's too severe a punishment to fire these jackasses over this bill, then consider the fact that politicians who supported this piece of legislation either:
Supported it knowing its full implications, despite the fact that it would introduce security risks, hurt the economy, innovation and jobs and would lead to censorship.
Or that they supported the bill not knowing the full implications of this legislation, which means that they're ignorant, and they shouldn't have their jobs anyway.
As of this writing, enough of you whined and got your way. Great, you stopped SOPA.
It needs to get worse before it gets better. We need a really shitty piece of legislation like SOPA in this country to be the spark that ignites the lazy, idle tinders of protest. It's not uncommon or even controversial to say that Washington is corrupt. It doesn't cause anyone to bat an eye when you say it in public, with Republicans, Democrats or "other." That's a problem. We need SOPA to wake the sleeping giant in this country. It could have been our generation's Rodney King verdict. Instead of blacking out our websites, what we need to do is dismantle the system that created this bullshit. Enough is enough.
Instead of changing your Facebook icon to an anti-SOPA image for a day or two, here's something you can do that might make a real difference: boycott the companies that supported this legislation. There are too many to boycott all of them effectively, so I propose we pick two or three, hit them, and hit them hard. Punish them for putting their interests above ours. Hitting them in the wallet should send a message. I've highlighted the most difficult ones to boycott in red. The companies with the biggest return for our boycott are in yellow. The more we inconvenience ourselves, the more impact the boycott will have:
60 Plus Association
Actors. Equity Association (AEA)
Alliance for Safe Online Pharmacies (ASOP)
American Bankers Association (ABA)
American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO)
American Federation of Musicians (AFM)
American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA)
American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA)
American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP)
Americans for Tax Reform
Association of American Publishe r s (AAP)
Association of State Criminal Investigative Agencies
Building and Construction Trades Department
Capitol Records Nashville
Center for Individual Freedom (CFIF)
Christian Music Trade Association
Church Music Publishers. Association
Coalition Against Online Video Piracy (CAOVP)
Concerned Women for America (CWA)
Congressional Fire Services Institute
Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB)
Council of State Governments
Country Music Association
Country Music Television
Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO
Directors Guild of America (DGA)
Disney Publishing Worldwide, Inc.
EMI Christian Music Group
EMI Music Publishing
Entertainment Software Association (ESA)
Gospel Music Association
Graphic Artists Guild
Hachette Book Group
HarperCollins Publishers Worldwide, Inc.
Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA)
International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians,
Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada (IATSE)
International AntiCounterfeiting Coalition (IACC)
International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF)
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW)
International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT)
International Trademark Association (INTA)
International Union of Police Associations
Let Freedom Ring
Lost Highway Records
Major County Sheriffs
Major League Baseball
Majority City Chiefs
Marvel Entertainment, LLC
McGraw- Hill Education
Minor League Baseball (MiLB)
Minority Media & Telecom Council (MMTC)
Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA)
MPA . The Association of Magazine Media
National Association of Fusion Center Directors
National Association of Manufacturers (NAM)
National Association of Prosecutor Coordinators
National Association of State Chief Information Officers
National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO)
National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA)
National Center for Victims of Crime
National Criminal Justice Association
National District Attorneys Association
National Domestic Preparedness Coalition
National Football League
National Narcotics Off ic ers. Associations. Coalition
National Sheriffs . Association (NSA)
National Songwriters Association
National Troopers Coalition
Office and Professional Employees International Union (OPEIU)
Penguin Group (USA), Inc.
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)
Provident Music Group
Screen Actors Guild (SAG)
Showdog Universal Music
Simon & Schuster
Sony/ATV Music Publishing
Sony Music Entertainment
Sony Music Nashville
State International Development Organization (SIDO)
The Perseus Books Groups
The United States Conference of Mayors
Tiffany & Co.
True Religion Brand Jeans
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC)
UMG Publishing Group Nashville
United States Chamber of Commerce
United States Olympic Committee
United States Tennis Association
Universal Music Publishing Group
W.W. Norton & Company
Wallace Bajjali Development Partners, L.P.
Warner Music Group
Warner Music Nashville
Wolters Kluewer Health
Zumba Fitness, LLC
The companies in red aren't impossible to boycott, just a lot more difficult because of their size. For example, you'd probably have to spend an hour of research every week just to make sure you weren't supporting a Viacom property if you chose to boycott them, and a boycott fewer than a few million strong probably won't matter to a company as large as Viacom. The companies in yellow stand a chance of getting some significant fallout from a boycott. There are a number of publishers on this list, including my own. If the consensus I get from readers is that we should boycott publishers, I'll support the boycott even though it hurts me. However, publishing companies traditionally haven't gone after piracy as blindly and bone-headedly as the MPAA and RIAA, so there are more deserving companies.
Which companies do you think deserve the boycott for SOPA? How would you propose we solve the problem that doesn't involve changing your Facebook profile picture? Email me. I'll update this site with a list. Keep it to the list of supporters. Updates soon.
255,975,938 people think stopping SOPA will change anything.