Let's sing a rousing round of Happy Birthday for the words you see on this blog. After all, writing is now 5,000 years old. At least western writing. The article dosn't mention China. China might have something to say about it.
Thanks to Rebecca
There has been a lot of pixels being displayed the past few days on Microsoft's Hailstorm and the direction Microsoft is going with its .Net strategy. One of the key ingredients is Microsoft Passport. Joel Spolksy wrote Does Issuing Passports Make Microsoft a Country? Be afraid, very afraid.
Happy birthday Ray. I'm thinking of you.
Molly Ivins is one of our more interesting collumists. She and George W. are both Texans. It's just that Molly is about as different from George W. (I'm not sure george w. actually rates leading capital letters - I don't think he's really done anything to deserve them so I won't use them from now on) as you can get. Not only is she a woman but she writes in very complete sentences with actual contol over the English Language. And she has something to say. Unfortunately, her columns are not archived, and the following one deserves it, so I include the whole damn thing here.
Put up or shut time for Democrats
AUSTIN -- The Democrats in the U.S. Senate have an unusual opportunity coming up in the next few weeks. One could even call it unique, if unique were not a forbidden word in newspapers. The Democrats can prove that everybody who voted for Ralph Nader was right. It's not often that a party gets to do a thing like that.
The McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform bill hit the Senate floor this week with Democrats wobbling all over God's little acre.
Despite the heroic stand of several Republican senators who have come out in favor of the bill, Democrats will get -- and deserve -- the blame if the bill fails.
This is one of those rare moments when the political system has the clarity of `High Noon.' We like to think of political fights as a morality play of good vs. evil, when in reality they almost never are. Most serious political fights are over decisions that are 51-49. This one isn't.
It's about whether there are two political parties or one -- the Money Party. Either the Democrats stand for something or they don't, and if they stand for letting the current system of legalized bribery continue, then we're better off voting for Ralph Nader.
The opportunity here for the D's is clear, particularly since the Republicans are off to such incredibly fast sprint-start in proving the case for McCain-Feingold.
Gee, what a record. Hard to see how the influence of campaign contributions on politics could get clearer than the credit card industry's purchase of a harsher bankruptcy law, industry's purchase of the repeal of rules to prevent repetitive stress injuries and High George Dubya's 180 on CO2.
As Joseph Welch once said to Sen. Joe McCarthy,"Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?"
That McCain-Feingold is an imperfect instrument is beyond argument. It's not as though we are accustomed to flawless legislation from Congress. The truth is, unless we start by cleaning up the soft money in politics, we'll never get anything more done.
One understands the Democratic money people are in full flower against McCain-Feingold on the grounds that the D's actually have an edge in raising soft money. Are these, by any chance, the same people who have brought such distinction to their party via James Riady, a Buddhist temple, tangled flow-through schemes and their happy acceptance of immense donations from Marc Rich? Think how much these folks have done to improve the party's standing with the public. By all means, let's follow their lead.
President W. Bush, who is so fond of citing the Texas Legislature as a font of bipartisan wisdom, will be interested to learn that last week the Texas Senate voted unanimously for the first real campaign finance reforms in the state's history. Since Texas is the Wild West of campaign finance -- essentially no rules, absolutely no limits -- this is a startling development.
True, state Sen. Florence Shapiro's SB 6 is not strong gargle, but it does prevent hidden corporate contributions and forces out-of-state PAC contributions into the open..
One of the annual delights of the debate over campaign finance reform is the appearance of new friends of the First Amendment; they spring up like dandelions in April. With a few honorable exceptions, those who carry on over the dire First Amendment implications of campaign finance reform are summer soldiers and sunshine patriots when in comes to freedom of speech. Their sole interest is in the peculiar proposition that money is free speech.
We never hear from them when anything but big political bucks are at stake: in those nasty, gut-check fights when freedom of speech has to protect ugly and repellent ideas, these Fairweather Firsters are nowhere to be found. But their pompous and condescending lectures on freedom of speech are a treat for connoisseurs of hypocrisy.
Please believe that all citizens have a role in this fight: wobbling Democrats and heroic Republicans need to hear a steady drumbeat of support from the public. From C-SPAN junkies to Americans so cynical they haven't bothered to vote for years, this fight is your fight. Speak up or forever hold your peace.
The workload of a small town webguy goes up and down. It's been mostly up recently which is why there haven't been any entries recently. Up is good. Added a lot of changes to Ace Leather Goods. I like doing sites for artists and craftspeople. You met interesting people and some become good friends like Andrew and Kathy at Ace Leather Goods. Two new e-commerce sites to start - Shadowfax Jewelry and First Light Candles. Both friends of Andrew and Kathy.
Some new sites to check out:
Paul Andrews Hypodermia. Paul used to be the technology writer for the Seattle Times. He's not there anymore but now you can read his blog.
And a web page that I hadn't seen in a while but Maria was kind enough to point it out. It contains very good advice.