01 January, 2009

Indiana Senate Bill 5 – A Joke

I normally have a national view. Excuse me while I slip for just a bit into Indiana politics.

I stumbled across this post on Masson’s Blog. He points out a new bill being introduced in the General Assembly this session. I hope he will forgive me for quoting his post in its entirety. It’s not very long.

Senator Errington has introduced SB 5 which expands the permissible forms of voter identification.

Included among the permissible forms of identification are: 1) a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or another government document that shows the name and address of the individual; 2) A driver’s license or state identification card issued by a state other than Indiana; and 3) an affidavit executed by two precinct election officers who are members of different major political parties declaring that they have personal knowledge of the individual and that the individual is the individual whose name appears on the poll list.

Sounds reasonable. It won’t, however, see the light of day in the Republican controlled Senate.

Sounds reasonable? On what planet??? Just because I have a utility bill showing that person A lives at address B doesn’t show that I’m person A! In fact, it doesn’t give any new information at all. From the registration information, we already know that person A lives at address B. That’s why we registered the person there.

Hopefully he’s correct about the bill’s chances, but not because it’s a Republican controlled Senate, but because it’s a truly awful bill.

Saying Goodbye to 2008 and Mediocrity

I read GigaOM for the technology news. I’ve long since realized that my political views differ radically from most of the posters there.

However, this article is a rare gem. Om Malik gets straight to the heart of what we’ve done wrong the last few months: embraced mediocrity.

In offering money to bailout failed bankers who couldn’t bank, car makers who couldn’t make good cars and chipmakers who have seemingly no business acumen, we stood on the top of the roofs and said: Mediocrity is OK. In the meantime, not one person has been held accountable for bringing fiscal, moral and social Armageddon to our doorstep.

He also looks at it from a technology perspective:

Our acceptance of mediocrity is the reason why Apple’s iPhone hasn’t had a credible competitor. Today, RIM Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis, in a chat with CNET Asia, compared the BlackBerry Storm — an iPhone rival — to a netbook. I recently had a chance to use the touchscreen Storm and within an hour of using the device, it was more like a Touch Scream Storm. It is beyond bad! Any self-respecting company should think twice before putting that device into the market, but as I said, in 2008 we came to learn and reward mediocrity.

I disagree with Om on one thing, though. This embracing of mediocrity is hardly new with 2008. It just accelerated then. He is correct in his conclusion, though. If we continue to embrace mediocrity, we will never again make this country great.

Great Article on Bush by Byron York

If you read nothing else about President George W. Bush (R-USA), read this. It’s a view into the inner workings  of the White House and Bush the Man.

Here’s a sample:

But the president’s political fortunes haven’t affected the intense loyalty that those who know him best feel for him. The people who have worked with George W. Bush in the White House for many of these past eight years have seen a different man from the one reflected in so much negative press coverage. And as they prepare to leave on January 20, their feelings for him are, if anything, stronger than when they arrived.


Well worth a click.

Republicans and democrats – Faith and Trust

Republicans often have little trust in big government and instead put their faith in big corporations.

Democrats often have little trust in big corporations and instead put their faith in big government.

Both are somewhat correct. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

In this instance, I believe that there is a clear winner, but I admit my bias.

One could also argue that the misguided faith and misguided trust of these institutions has led to our current financial mess.

Republicans and Democrats – Point of View

Republicans tend to think that what is good for America will be good for Americans. This makes them support the a strong armed forces, low corporate taxes, things like FISA wiretaps, etc.

Democrats tend to think that what is good for Americans will be good for America. This makes them support the unions, national health care, the Department of Education, etc.

One could argue that neither viewpoint is a) completely right, b) completely ywrong, c) very healthy and d) very intelligent.

Happy New Year

I hope the coming year is good for you no matter your political persuasion. I also hope that it’s a great year for America and Americans and the world as a whole.