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Gonzales and Ashcroft

Don’t expect the Justice Department to become better under a Gonzales lead. While he lacks at least some of the religious fervor that Ashcroft has he is no fan of civil rights. As perhaps the most egregious example he is the author of the memo saying that in the war on terror torture of prisoners is justified, and called the Geneva conventions regarding prisoners “quaint.” Also, secrecy, it would seem, is Gonzales’ middle name. The White House declined to release his middle name saying he prefers to use just the initial “R.” Gonzales is also exceptionally loyal to the White House, more so than Ashcroft who did disagree with Bush on a few things. This means a tight knit consolidated power structure that is only bad for America, especially as all the other Cabinet level critics are also expected to leave.

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I know it’s a bit early for this, but looking forward to 2008 I’d like to officially throw my support behind Governor Bill Richardson of New Mexico. The guy is incredible, I sincerely hope he decides to run. For those that don’t know much about him he was a congressman representing a rural New Mexico district for 15 years, then he was the Ambassador to the UN for a while before becoming Secretary of Energy under Clinton. In 2002 he was elected Governor and so far he has been doing good things for New Mexico. He has such a great set of experience, he is strong on the environment, he is strong on the economy, he is strong on foreign policy. Also he’s been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize four times so far. His name was tossed around for this last presidential race, but he decided not to run, his name was tossed around again when it came time to choose a VP.

For those thinking that Hillary is the shoe in for 2008 I’m highly skeptical. I don’t really think that Hillary really wants to be President, Senator is a pretty prestigious and important position in and of itself, I don’t think it’s a stepping stone to the presidency. Also, Hillary running would polarize the electorate as there are a great many people out there who really hate Hillary personally, add to that the probably larger than people think number of people who will be opposed to the very thought of a woman being president and you’ve got way to motivated an opposition. Mind you, I do think that Hillary Clinton would make a good president, but I’m not very convinced she’d get elected, or that she wants to go through that hassle. I think, for the time being, that she’d make a pretty good VP pick, depending of course on who was the presidential nominee.

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The Media of the Past

I am continuously fascinated by the parallels between our present time and the late nineteenth century. There are many of them, policy issues like should the US have imperial interests, to social issues like the rise in morality in influencing politics. One of my favorite topics is the role and influence of media in shaping public opinion and policy. On this issue the parallels are truly remarkable and very important to our present day discussion.

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You have an important decision to make

I got a letter from Ed Gillespie. It said I was going to make an important decision in the next few minutes. That decision was whether or not I believed in our President’s vision for a stronger, better America. An America where The Rich pay no taxes, and the poor have no rights. Also, it mentions how if I don’t give now those nasty liberals will raise our taxes, take away our guns, turn the country over to the terr’ists and plunge the nation into recession.

Well, ok, I’m paraphrasing, and poorly at that, but you get the idea.

Needless to say I wrote them out a check for $1000 right there. After all we can’t have those damned liberals taking over the government.1

I don’t know why they keep sending me these things, you’d think after I refused to return Tom DeLay’s phone calls two years ago they’d learn. Alas, they still believe me to be a bit of a Republican and one with money even. Maybe it is because I own a business yet still pay no taxes.

1. This, for the uninitiated, is sarcasm, or at least a lie. I realize I don’t post a great deal, so it is indeed difficult to tell sometimes. Also, while the letter was so convincing that I wanted to write them a check for $1000 I just don’t have that kind of money to spare right now.

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Hello world, how's the weather?

As I type this I can’t feel my fingers. You’ll probably have to just trust me on this, but it’s very difficult to type when you can’t feel your fingers, it’s similar to trying to chew when you’re jaw is numb from recent dental work, only with less risk of making a tasty treat of your own tongue.

Now one could expect that since I haven’t posted in nearly a year, nor have I communicated in any meaningful way with anyone save for a couple of people for nearly a year, that I would post something with more content that the fact that I can’t feel my fingers. I will, however, not do this, as not feeling my fingers right now, as I type, is the only thing of consequence that has happened to me in the last year.

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"I'm focused on 18 holes of golf"

Sounds a lot like “I just want to focus on making my salad.”

So what’s the first thing that Bush talked about upon getting back from his weekend at the Bush Family Compound in Maine? Yes, that’s right, he said that Saddam Husein was evil, and the world would be safer if he wasn’t in charge of a country. Then he went on to tell congress to hurry up and give him more money for the “War on Terrorism”. As a side not he completely brushed off anything related to his own involvement in strange business practices, you know stuff like Worldcom. Well, at least stuff like all of the businesses he ever ran went bankrupt, but he and his other execs from those businesses still ended up millionaires. Hmmm.

So if we launch any aggressive military actions this week I will laugh, then I will be afraid. For I will know that at least the timing was calculated to pull attention away from corporate accounting scandals, and Bush himself.

Why yes I am cynical, thanks for asking.

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I pledge allegiance to my dog. . .

Wow, 1954 was when a particularly unruly congress stuck "under god" into the pledge of allegiance. Some of us were wondering when they did that ever since we saw that one movie with the catholic school extortion racket. Now it's gone, at least for the time being. Mind you that without the "under god" part I have no problem with the pledge of allegiance, even as falsely patriotic as it is. "

Of course, the bizarre part of this is that lawmakers across the board are saying this is bad. They claim they'll push for a constitutional amendment authorizing the use of the words "under god" in the pledge. What the fuck? I think there is a certain mostly religious percentage of the population that will have a problem with it, I don't think as a general rule that it will "not sit well with the American people", as Ari Fleischer put it. I could be wrong though, maybe the public will be outraged by this. Wait? How could we tell? Oh that's right, 'cause we'll here from various elected politicians, they'll speak for the public. Mutter mutter mutter mutter, ok, I'm done.

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The world makes me sad.

People are so stupid, irrational, simple minded, and hateful. They lock themselves in their own little paradigm and can not even begin to comprehend what it is they are doing. People fucking suck, that is my rant.

I crave red licorice and creme soda. Mostly red licorice though.

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Ahh Microsoft, how we love thee.

I have recently come to the conclusion that the best solution for penalties against Microsoft would be to immediately put them out of business. The government should seize all of the corporate assets, it should pay off the stockholders a little, it should pay off the employees a little. I don't really care what happens to the actually software rights so long as they are given directly to another company. If it's all simply kept hidden and unavailable that's fine.

The point is this, with Microsoft out of the way you'd have other companies springing into that role within weeks. And you'd end up with actual real competition in the market. It would spur the currently fairly stagnant software economy, it would spur innovation. It would generally be a tremendous positive for the consumer.

Microsoft is not like Ma Bell, it's not providing a valuable service that no one else could provide. Breaking it up will only result in two companies with a stranglehold on their respective markets, and it'll generally be just as bad for the consumer.

Anyway, questions? Comments? Angry hate mail? To be fair, I've generally been pretty pro-Microsoft. I think that all of the proposed penalties are pretty stupid and will probably do more harm to everyone (especially the consumer) then good.