URLs du Jour


■ We interrupt our regular blog format to celebrate the appearance of our official, but uncompensated, blog mascot, Cathy Poulin, in Mount Kisco, NY: Heavenly Productions, Bob's Discount Furniture Spread Joy In Mount Kisco

Heavenly Productions and Bob's Discount Furniture distributed Dr. Seuss books, Dr. Seuss hats and Bob's Discount furniture blankets for 85 children. They then sang "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star," while Cathy Poulin of Bob's Discount Furniture dressed up as The Cat In The Hat and read the famous Dr. Seuss book.

And there's a pic, which I have stolen:

[Cathy in Mt. Kisco]

That's Cathy in the front row middle. She's a good sport.

Proverbs 20:8 describes a royal superpower that sounds unlikely to modern ears:

8 When a king sits on his throne to judge,
    he winnows out all evil with his eyes.

You know, that whole separation of powers thing? Especially keeping judicial power away from the executive? That was a good idea.

■ Arnold Kling asks: Did the Suits win the Internet?

Around 1995, the Suits discovered the World Wide Web. Their reaction: this is going to be television on steroids! Media giants will rule the earth, as the Internet becomes a vehicle for mass entertainment.

At that time, the Geeks thought differently. The architecture of the Net was peer-to-peer. You did not need large amounts of capital to build a business. Instead, personal computers, with access to the Net, were putting the means of production in the hands of the individual. Government would be powerless to control or censor the Net.

Good question. I was (and, to some extent, remain) a Geek. But I've also (to some extent) surrendered to the Apple/Microsoft/Google/Facebook/Twitter Suits.

And certainly the Suits in most organizations would prefer to manage interchangeable (and easily replaceable) sub-Suits rather than unruly Geeks.

One sad moment of revelation for me was when I attended a LISA sysadmin conference, once a proud den of Geeks, and a respected member of the organization made an impassioned argument that (basically) said we should all get our MCSE certifications.

I think that might have been the last LISA conference I attended.

(Kling's article is inspired by, and links to a long and interesting Fast Company interview with Alan Kay. You might want to check that out too.)

■ The Google LFOD alert rang for a Concord Monitor op-ed from Matt Simon, of the Marijuana Policy Project: The price of prohibition.

Now that the “Live Free or Die” state has stopped arresting people for possessing small amounts of marijuana, the debate over marijuana legalization and regulation in Concord has finally begun in earnest.

Simon takes on anti-legalization arguments, noting that the sky has not fallen in legal-pot-selling Colorado.

■ And we also got alerted to a wonderfully unhinged LTE from Lance Shoots of Lerna, Illinois, appearing in the local Journal Gazette and Times-Courier: Nation experiencing widespread discontent. It's all one big babbling paragraph:

As a wave of widespread discontent sweeps our beleaguered nation, may no man deny its profound and far-reaching consequences; while a select few will mount the wave and ride it to glorious heights, most will be swept out to sea, hopelessly lost in the deliberately murky waters. The sad state of affairs in which America finds itself is a sign of the times, and there will be no shelter from the coming storm; rich or poor, black or white, male or female, all will feel its fury. We have been subjugated by an oppressive and parasitic system which is manipulated and perpetuated by an elite ruling class bent on maintaining total control of the population, too often at a great cost of life and liberty. Seemingly every second of our lives is inundated with harmful propaganda; one by one, our civil liberties are rounded up, snuffed out, and unceremoniously dumped into unmarked graves as the band plays on. So long as the manipulated majority believe our broken system can't be fixed, they're absolutely right; it's a disastrous self-fulfilling prophecy which serves the interests of the few at the cost of the many. It's simply unacceptable to stand idly by as the rights of our fellow Americans are trampled upon by power-drunk tyrants; lest we forget, every nation gets the government it deserves. Let us replace the self-serving motto 'Don't Tread On Me' with the unifying declaration 'Don't Tread On Any'; let us discard the tragically defeatist slogan 'Live Free Or Die' in favor of the rallying mantra 'Live Free Or Kill'. Our great nation has fallen into the hands of vicious traitors and it's up to us to take it back. We the people built this country and we the people can reclaim it; after all, that's the American way.

"Lance Shoots" is an unfortunate name for someone who wants to replace LFOD with "Live Free or Kill". I don't think that's going on my license plate anytime soon.