Not Following Dumb Laws; Or, Why the VisLupiEstGrex People are Idiots
By: Barry Belmont

Periodically I check out what the VisLupiEstGrex kids are up to and periodically I am disappointed. Recently they blogged about some rule being violated (sound familiar?) and how this is…important? or meaningful? or…something.

What they were complaining about this time is that the personal information of a few College of Liberal Art potential-fillers-of-the-empty-seat students had been blacked out. They called it redacted because it sounded scarier. What information, what crucial, vital, essential pieces of information needed to be shared with the world and whose being blacked out was a violation of LAW and which was done with NO PRECENDENCE!? The students’ addresses, student numbers, telephone numbers, email addresses, and cumulative GPAs.

You know, the stuff one doesn’t generally doesn’t want to see floating around on blogs run by anonymous people who use the word “redacted”.

When a commenter responded to the post by saying, “I dont think you are being fair. Censoring home addresses and phone numbers is perfectly understandable before they are confirmed. Let’s try not to be unreasonable guys” one of the VisLupiEstGrex people retorted:

This is isn’t about fairness. This is about the plain meaning of the law. The Senate has never before, to our knowledge, redacted such information [...] I do not believe it is unreasonable to make a reasoned argument backed by legal authority. It may be unfair that this is public material, but it is not declared by law to be private.” (emphasis added)

But this couldn’t be more completely wrong. Laws have no authority in and of themselves. Laws derive their only power, their only sway insofar as people are willing to uphold those laws. There are laws against jay walking and speeding, but how many times have you broken these laws even within the past week? Would all the VisLupiEstGrex people be willing to say they never drank underage, never drove over the speed limit, have, in fact, stopped at every “Stop” sign 100% everytime they’ve seen one?

Of course they shouldn’t have to say they’ve done all those things: those things are pointlessly stupid laws in many instances. Dumb laws should be ignored. Bad laws shouldn’t be followed simply because they’re laws. They are first and foremost “bad” which makes whatever it is they advocate lose any sense of “necessity.” Don’t ever be fooled into thinking there is such a thing as a “necessary evil.” There isn’t. Such a ploy is only held up by those too weak to carry meaningful ethical principles.

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View Comments Posted in Local/Nevada, Political Philosophy
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  • http://unrforliberty.com/ John

    Wait, so they are upset because the public record is blotting out their HOME address, phone number, and gpa? Bizarre.

  • Dude

    If you actually read the article, you would realize that it wasn't about WHAT they blotted out, it was that they thought they had the ability to do so. I didn't think you guys would be in favor of the Government just doing whatever. Maybe you guys are just still upset that your little political party got SHUT DOWN by these guys. Hold a grudge?

  • http://www.unrforliberty.com Barry Belmont

    And if you had actually read what I posted, you'd realize that this isn't about what a “government” can or can't do…it's about the silliness of having to find a legal precedent to do something. It's absurd to think that one would need to find a state or federal statute/law/note/etc giving someone the explicit ability to black out what any noraml person would consider “private” information.

    It is people who say what is and what is not private, not the government. The Vislupbalblahblah people say that the exact opposite should be the case. And this is why they're idiots.

  • Moses

    Citing to the law probably won't do much good since you don't recognize the legitimacy of government, but I do and some of the more sane readers of your blog might too.

    NRS 241.020 states, in part, ” Upon any request, a public body shall provide, at no charge, at least one copy of:

    (c) … any other supporting material provided to the members of the public body for an item on the agenda, except materials:

    (3) Declared confidential by law….

    A candidate's physical or e-mail address and phone number is not confidential under any state law. Therefore, the GOVERNMENTAL official had no power or authority to withhold that info.

    The Nevada Public Records Act (NRS 239) says basically the same thing. Records are presumed to be public unless they are declared by law to be confidential. Governmental officials don't get to make up what the law is any more than you or I.

    Barry, the people do get to say what is and is not private. They do so through their elected representatives. And the people say that the information is not confidential.

    By the way, when the state enacts a law, it is the people doing so. Check out the enacting clause of Nevada legislation sometime. It says, “The People of the State of Nevada, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows.” It doesn't say, “The Illegitimate Government, which Libertarians Reject Exists, does enact as follows.”

  • Dude

    Here's the thing Berry Boyhood, the information that the Speaker redacted, was on their RESUMES, which means the candidate put it there by choice. If they didn't want that information public, they could have easily left it off their resume. Just because these guys took you to task and pretty much proved that your entire way of thinking is wrong, doesn't mean you should take it personally.

  • chill out

    did any of you flamers even read barry's post? he didn't take anything personally and just pointed out that the vislupi guys were being ridiculous. they even admit to that particular post perhaps being a little off the deep end. so why don't you guys just chill the fuck out.

  • Sexy Randal The pharaoh Wizard

    Mr. Barold B-bop
    I enjoy your fine work, That said your hair is short…..and not long….anymore!
    But I see you Like the Poleeticks and such. But do you like the Bears? I dont!
    But I do like the animal….The Bear.

    Live long and prosper and such….
    Mr. Sprock
    :) ……Happyface

  • Sexy Randal The pharaoh Wizard

    Mr. Barold B-bop
    I enjoy your fine work, That said your hair is short…..and not long….anymore!
    But I see you Like the Poleeticks and such. But do you like the Bears? I dont!
    But I do like the animal….The Bear.

    Live long and prosper and such….
    Mr. Sprock
    :) ……Happyface

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