Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Grits and Greens at the Holidays

No, I'm not kidding.

Dixie Royal
You are 81% true Southern!
You are pure belle or gentleman! You know your Jones Soda, Nehi and RC colas, your Moon Pies and sweet potato pie; you'd absolutely die without air conditioners in the summer, and you've seen Steel Magnolias and Fried Green Tomatoes (or read the book!). Your grandmother lives in an antebellum home and has a cook who makes the best fried chicken and asparagus casserole and summer squash and everything else in the world. And you know the taste of honeysuckle and the feel of grass between your toes. You are blessed.

My test tracked 1 variable How you compared to other people your age and gender:

free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 55% on Southerliness
Link: The Southern-ness Test written by gwennykate on Ok Cupid, home of the 32-Type Dating Test
[via Cardinal Martini]

Rules for Blogging

Don Surber suggests some rules for blogging:

The first rule is The Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Malkin learned this in an unhappy way.

The second rule is from my sisters: Don’t dish it out what you cannot take. Call someone a moonbat, expect to be called a wingnut. Bloggers set the tone for their blogs. Opinions are discounted greatly by the author’s use of foul language, personal attacks and general meanness.

Third rule: Thou shall not steal. That means link those whose material you are citing. Take no more than one third without permission.

Fourth rule is from Jim Snyder, an old sportswriter and city editor, who said never write about a person what you would not say to his face. He once challenged the mayor of Parkersburg to a duel of cream pies. Mayor Alvin K. Smith declined. Both are dead. Both were characters. Both hated one another but never wrote anything about the other that they would not say to their faces.

Fifth rule: Have fun. Enjoy what you are doing. Blogging is a hobby first, last and always. A few people are millionaires off this. Good for them. But if they are not enjoying their posting, why are they doing this?

Other than that, follow the rules of journalism, realizing that the only difference is blogs are opinions, not news stories. The ABCs of journalism are accuracy, brevity and clarity. Cite sources. Disclose conflicts of interest. Don't blog to appease advertisers.

There is more, so read the whole thing.  He thinks he may be making a fool of himself in suggesting these rules; if he wants to recruit "An Army of Fools," I'll take my place on the front line.


Kerry Lied, Jefferson Cried

So says Cardinal Martini of my junior senator.  You know, the one of the two I actually like better.

Then again, it's not hard to beat Ted Kennedy in that race.

God help the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

On "Net Neutrality": Slow Down

It seems that the blogs are abuzz over the "Communications Opportunity, Promotion, and Enhancement Act of 2006" decrying it as "downright frightening," among other things.  The Middle America Progressive calls it "yet another reason for real conservative to stand up and be counted as opposed to George Bush and the budding American Theocracy that the GOP is trying to create."  As you know, I respond positively to having both my ideology and my patriotism called out. 

It's almost as well as I respond to doomsday claims made by those who I would be willing to bet have not even seen a link to the proposed legislation, let alone skimmed the document itself.

Don't bother looking at Thomas.  It's not there: the bill has not been reported out of committee and is apparently not yet linked to any bill previously referred to the Energy and Commerce Committee.  But, it is scheduled for markup tomorrow (Wednesday).

I contacted a college buddy who works on Capitol Hill to see if I could get a copy, but he said that is would be available once it was reported out.  Of course, he doesn't work on telecom issues, so he might not have had the most complete information on this bill; he was aware of the bill, but did not have ready access to it.

After a rather involved search, I did find what may be committee print for tomorrow's hearing, but I can't be certain that it is the most recent document.  However, what I also found was that a lot of this furor was derived from the statements (without much variation) of a single consumer advocate who does work on such matters.  I won't be so crass as to call him a special interest lobbyist, except for how that's what he is, isn't he, even if he may be wearing a hat some presumptively deem white?

No, I'd rather just challenge you, dear reader, to find the bill, and put it together for yourself if you are so upset about this.  Find the thoughts of someone who opposes the bill that do not (intentionally or otherwise) state verbatim the statement linked above.  Find the thoughts of someone (pro or con) who actually notes the FCC adjudication mechanism and the $500,000 penalties for each instance of violating Commission's policies protecting consumer choice in broadband service.

Think about it.  If Verizon were to block even 1,000 people from accessing Instapundit or DailyKos, it could face half a billion dollars in penalties.

Am I saying I'm for this bill?  No.  I'm too tired (and still focused on student speech law) to form an opinion on it. 

I'm not about to make a decision on the merits of the bill (with due respect to my friend) based upon the say-so of a Hill staffer who works in other areas and an opposition whose forward guard redlined my B.S. detector within about 30 seconds of reaching their web site.

In short: if you want to call your member of Congress, fine.  But if you are going to tell him or her that the sky Net is falling, you might want to make sure that you haven't been duped by a lobbying group that, based on its niche, has its best fundraising opportunity in months.

And if you are convinced that it all fits: explain it to me.  I'm clearly missing something here if that's the case.

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