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Swirling ‘Round The Drain

January 16, 2003

No, I haven’t written a post lately. Mostly because all week I’ve been damned fed up with things I haven’t wanted to come off as whiny, and I know the political stuff is a real turn-off for some people. So, if you’re one of those people, you probably won’t want to click on the more link.

The quick rundown of various things that have been infuriating me lately.

Ann Coulter: Jesus Christ, how can anyone take her seriously? She’s a leading conservative pundit? How? Why isn’t she laughed at and kicked off the national stage by now?

Eldred v. Ashcroft: A short summary. In 1998, Congress passed a law extending copyright twenty years from what it was (fifty years after the death of the creator to seventy years after the death of the creator for individuals, and from seventy-five to ninety-five years for corporations). The law passed after heavy lobbying from corporations, who hold the most richly coveted.. oh, fuck it. It was Disney sponsored legisation, because the first Mickey Mouse cartoon, Steamboat Willie (based on an update of an out-of-copyright character) was going to enter the public domain this year. The law was passed in the midst of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, and the war in Kosovo, so it didn’t get a lot of press at the time. Wikipedia has a good summary of it. I find it despicable, and contrary to how things should be when government is so openly bought. Disney’s hypocrisy is only more obvious by the fact that their current movie in theaters is Treasure Planet, based on the novel by Robert Louis Stevenson, published in 1883, which is now in the public domain. Yet it will be at least 2089 before Lion King In Space can be released, and with continued retroactive extension of copyright, even that seems doubtful. Public domain was meant to exist, the framers of the Constitution obviously never intended for copyrights to last as long as they do, and… oh, fuck it. Can we just say I’m fed up with this? Good. I’m fed up with it.

The whole U of MI admissions. Three white applicants are suing, saying that the University of Michigan’s admissions policy is unconstitutional because it takes race into account. Yes, I know, in the article, Bush is quoted as saying race solely determined admission. That’s because he’s an illiterate jackass, and if you voted for him, remember you voted for a fucking bigoted deserter idiot. I don’t like affirmative action. I don’t. I’d like to get rid of it. Unfortunately, we can’t. Until race isn’t a factor in making these sorts of decisions about peoples’s lives — college admissions, job acceptance, contract awards, etc., there have to be corrective measures in place. An article that points out that, yes, race still is a factor in job interviewing is also on CNN’s website. Researchers sent out resumes to companies, some with "white" names (Neil, Brett, Greg), and some with "black" names (Tamika, Ebony, Aisha). Do I need to tell you which got 50% more responses?

Iraq. We’re invading. You don’t send tens of thousands of Marines to a place to set up a hot dog stand. We don’t have a reason to invade yet. They might have biological or chemical weapons. Maybe. Somewhere. They sure used to be trying to make them. Bush says he’s got proof but… well, sharing of that proof has been sort of limited. And the Democrats rolled over and voted him the power to do whatever he wants. Thanks, guys. Let’s find other ways to fuck this up. We don’t have a clear-cut goal, and I doubt this administration’s ability to plan out the future of this country, let alone this country’s and another’s.

Let’s not even get into the Democratic candidates for President. So far the only one that’s moderately attractive is John Edwards, and I’m only waiting to be disappointed by finding out that he likes to boil puppies or something. Moving on…

North Korea: A speechwriter included them in the axis of evil, they’re in a years-long famine, and they don’t have enough power to light their country, so they’re turning their nuclear reactor back on, and talking about making more bombs. Could the administration have acted like this blindsided them more? Could they appear to have less of a plan than they do? Probably not. More Republican genius on display.

Ari Fleischer: The evil weasel who’s Bush’s press secretary. Weren’t the Republicans supposed to be more straightforward than Clinton? Less deceptive? Did anyone believe that? Has no one else noticed that Bush never has press conferences, because all they do is illuminate his obvious mediocrity, and lack of basic human behavior?

Okay. Done for now. I might do a less crabby blog entry later. Or maybe not. The world situation doesn’t look like it’s improving any time soon, so I might just be a crank for a while. Ain’t that grand?

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  1. January 16, 2003 1:18 PM | #1

    And let’s add this to the fucking list.
    Israel to begin assassinations in U.S., allied nations
    I changed ‘kill’ to ‘assassinate’ to make the point even clearer.

  2. January 16, 2003 4:41 PM | #2

    I really like this copyright concept.
    Creative Commons

  3. January 16, 2003 5:35 PM | #3

    Which one? It looks like they’ve got about eleven different licenses they’re offering up for use. And it’s nice and all, but I’ll be stunned if any copyright holder of significant magnitude adopts any of them (Cory Doctorow doesn’t count).

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