Presumption of innocence

Bea and I spent the weekend with friends down in Tampa Bay, while we were super busy having more fun that should be allowed in just a long weekend we also followed the Casey Anthony Trial. Every time we had a chance we would watch some of the trial or one of the summaries. It looked like it was going to be a slam dunk and the evidence did not look all that circumstantial… however we were wrong.

When we heard that she was innocent on the greater charges, I was not upset. My wife was a little outraged and we talked about it a bit. In reality, the system is not broken and the more we discussed it the more we realized that in reality there seems to be a lot of information missing. You cannot convict people without due process and specially actual evidence. I am not a judge nor jury so I have no idea… does she seem guilty… yes, but I am not in a position to actually make that call.

Latin Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat

(the principle that one is considered innocent until proven guilty)

My friend Daniel had a similar reaction to the verdict, and even though people try to “call him out” by bringing up a cause he and I support (I actually picked up the cause thanks to him) the WM3. It is a actually an example of what can happen if circumstantial evidence is given more power than it should.

Being a juror is not an easy job, and we should not be outraged at them. Lets not approach this situation like celebrity gossip, but rather like what it is, the loss of a life. I do hope that those responsible are brought to justice CSI style. While that lady might not be the perfect mother, right now there was not enough evidence for her to be put in jail. If she is involved directly or indirectly her own conscience might be the only judge and jury right now. Lets hope that the lessons that come out of this is that the system will do everything it can to find the true perpetrators and not just another celebrity inflation like the OJ Simpson trial debacle.

Shop Talk

Most of the companies I have worked for have had 3 letter acronyms. From NDS to AON they all come with their issues, perks and in some cases extremely long hours. For a long time I have wanted to blog about more about IT, but fear of losing my job because of it kept me from doing it. If you have not heard yet, I am now moving to a new company and even though there will be an IT component to the job, I will be working more on the business side of things… so I feel like I am finally free to talk. I have written about IT before, but the issue has always been that even if the topics are common across many companies, someone might take it personal and go running to the president of the company saying… John is posting about “bla, bla, bla on his blog.”

That was a very annoying thing, knowing that people from your work read your blog… your personal blog. It would be a lot different if I was posting on my LinkedIn profile about the company in a negative way, but if I talk about how some aspect of IT is X or Y it should not be taken as talking bad about the company. It has been a weird feeling as the internet seems to get bigger thanks to social media, now family, friends and coworkers join the audience of your blog… what for so long felt like an outlet started to feel like something that I had to filter.

I am glad that chapter of my life is behind me and that I feel like I can now speak freely about the IT world without fear of retribution. I have been away from most of the situations that I want to post about now. The topics will be general enough that it should never be associated with company XYZ or employee 1234. I am very excited about this career move, and more so about being able to finally publish some things that were written years ago, and surprisingly enough are still relevant.

Green Lantern (****)

buy at Amazon.com

I guess I will start with the disclaimer that GL happens to be one of my favorite superheroes and I went into the movie like a total fanboy. I did not wear my GL T-shirt but I did have in the back of my head all of the comics I have read and how they could just screw the movie up. I did not go in wanting to hate it, just have a good time but without a lot of expectations.

I stayed away from reviews. I know how harsh some critics can be of a superhero movie that is going to be CGI heavy. Maybe it is the fan in me, but the CGI was never forced and even when I wanted to kind of be a little dissapointed about how Parallax looked, I continued to be engaged. There is a lot of CGI but it helps the story along. Sure I can go back and take it apart now, but the reality is that while watching the movie I was just simply entertained.

The movie went by way too quickly and well, there is a lot of information to digest. It is a new universe to many and I think this is a great way to introduce people and leave the door open for a franchise. I think the casting was great for this one and hope that there is some continuity when they do the sequels. The movie did deviate a little from the story that I thought they were going to use, but it made the story flow and a non comic geek would probably never really care.

We opted for the non 3D version since the last couple of movies we watched with that technology seemed to take more way from the movie than enhance it. I will be curious to hear what the people that saw it on 3D think of the CGI work.

Even though I think going to the movies it is starting to be impractical when it comes to money (10 bucks is just ridiculous for 1 ticket.) I was glad I saw this movie on a big screen. My only regret is that I did not get to enjoy it with XO; but I think it was a blessing since I could not handle someone else besides my wife drooling over Ryan Reynolds.

Sinestro will be an excellent foe in the next movie, I cannot wait to go see it.

Self-Reliance

Ideologies, much like the bible are often misquoted. American culture is supposed to be all about the individual and individualism, but if you dig a little to were the term “self-reliance” come from, you will find that it has a lot to do with a speech by Ralph Waldo Emerson where he enunciated the tenets of Transcendentialism. It really cracks me up when people talk about politics and America but know so little about a country that in reality does not have that many years in history. Historically Americans fight the institution, but it seems like as a society they love to live in the now and learn from past mistakes.

I see being selfish as one of the things that hurts this society the most. I also see the misunderstanding of self reliance as kind of a symptom.

I have managed to have a lot of military people in my circle of friends. My first experience with someone that had just left the military was horrible. I worked with a guy who just got out and he seemed to have the maturity of a 16 year old and the work ethic of someone that just got out of a prison camp. While the guy had no authority in the computer lab he wanted to institute new rules and regulations about doing a job that involved simply helping students and delivering cows (computers on wheels).

As I got older I met more and more people that were involved in the military life, and like with any other label this society has I learned that there are varying degrees of what you get out of it or how much it really changes you. One thing that is a common theme is that they understand cooperation and goals better than most people. You would think Corporate America has the concept of “teamwork” on lock-down but it could not be further from the truth… finger-pointing and “CYA” but that is for another day, another post.

I have great conversations with the people that have served this country and another common theme is that they don’t understand why the country is going to the crapper… and I often feel like saying, well its because its all about how much do I have and how much more can I consume. I don’t like arguments that don’t change the situation so I keep it to myself. I do feel a little bit guilty that so many are fighting for “freedom” but in reality this country goes more and more towards the complete consumerism that is satirically displayed in the movie idiocracy.

I am at a point in life that I agree with the sentiment of Emerson that “moral intuition is a better guide to the moral sentiment than religious doctrine.” The truth in morality is always intuitive or there would be no people in position of power with their hands in the cookie jar. I wish that people realized that to help our society we have to help others and quit this rat race that leaves everyone a loser.

I AM

It is amazing to find things that truly resonate with you. A nice piece of art, an awesome song that makes your soul move, or in this case a movie that illustrates exactly how you feel.

For years those close to me have heard me talk about how relationships and connections with other people is what is really important. When a connection is severed or a bond it lost, I really feel it. The movie I AM really puts things in very simple language and truly makes you think

So many people spend countless hours trying to obtain wealth and status only to feel empty in the end. I know understand the need for money to survive but there has to be a point of balance where getting more “stuff” should yield to being a better person and capable of sharing with others. I don’t think is all about giving your money away either, but just being truly able to share yourself with others.

The wife and I just spent a wonderful weekend with friends from out of town and their kids. It was an amazing time connecting, sharing and just being happy. It is amazing what can happen when people are open to create and awknowledge the importance of connections and how that is what we really are all about as humans. It is not about the individualism of “I have to be first!”

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