A blog by Jacob
Alexis De Tocqueville 1805-1859
The problem: Our federal government has maxed out its credit cards.
Obama’s solution: Get more credit cards, and don’t negotiate with the Republicans about alternatives.
Republican’s solution: Go ahead and get more credit cards, but only if you reduce how much the government is spending.
I noticed that some of my payroll taxes were a little higher this month. Yes, in spite of President Obama’s promise not to raise taxes. Since I budget, a decrease in my take home pay requires me to cut some of my budget categories. So I’ll be spending a little less on entertainment, personal care, travel, groceries, and hobbies. Yes, when taxes go up, my spending goes down, dollar per dollar. And that is how the economy is struggling to improve.
It seems that there is a war on the rich. President Obama wants to raise taxes on the rich. Occupy Wall Street was willing to camp in their own poop in order to protest the rich. Even the latest Batman Rises movie had an apathetic theme about the rich. But who are these people that so many people are so ready to hate? A couple of the names from the Forbes 400 list:
These provisions were intended to protect both the safety and privacy of Fort Collins residents. Since both of those things are important to me, I placed my address on the do-not-solicit list.
I rarely have problems with solicitors. Occasionally I get someone knocking on my door who wasn’t paying close enough attention to their list. I usually remind them that we are on the no-solicit list and they very apologetically leave (quickly). However, tonight’s solicitor was particularly dumb.
Some girl with a Direct TV badge came knocking on my door in the dark at about 7pm. I informed her that I was on the no-solicit list. She responded that she would gladly take us off her Direct TV list. I told her that I shouldn’t be on her list in the first place, because I’m on the no-solicit list. As I noticed that she didn’t have the city-issued solicitor badge, I informed her about the Fort Collins law and told her that it is illegal for her to be knocking on any doors without a permit, especially not doors like mine which are on the no-solicit list. She told me that she was new to the area and was unaware of the solicitation laws, apologized, and left.
I usually feel a little bad when I have to tell a solicitor that they’ve made a mistake. I mean, they’re just trying to do their job. But what happened next with this Direct TV girl made me wish that I was a little more firm and direct.
Two minutes later, she knocks on my door again. When I open the door and she sees me, she says, “Have I already knocked on your door?” To which I respond, “What are you still doing knocking on doors? I told you it is illegal!” She runs off, probably just to knock on my neighbor’s door.
The poor girl. Apparently she was not with it enough to figure out which doors she has knocked on, but then to make the mistake of knocking on the same door twice with the guy who lectured her on the solicitation laws.
One of the things I’ve expected to hear in the Republican primaries was the candidates desires to cut national debt and increase jobs. When it comes to running a campaign, Newt Gingrich apparently can’t do either. According to recent news reports, the Gingrich campaign owes slightly more money than it has. In February, it spent more money than it raised. And recently, one third of the campaign staff was laid off.
During the Clinton presidency, Newt Gingrich united Republicans, but his continued campaign continues to run contrary to his previous accomplishments.
There are bills underway in the U.S. Senate and House that have very dangerous consequences for the Internet. SOPA and PIPA are meant to protect intellectual property online, but they give far too much enforcement power to the government.
The bills allow the government to immediately shut down entire websites because they didn’t filter user content that might help someone obtain an illegal copy of something. For example, Wikipedia could be shut down immediately and without warning because someone posted an except of a book that they didn’t have permission to post. Facebook could be shut down because someone posted a link to a picture that was copied without permission.
This would be like the government shutting down and entire mall because someone walked through it with a copied CD in their pocket. According to these bills, the mall should have searched people before they entered the mall to make sure they didn’t have any illegal copies of media on them.
These bills go beyond punishing those who illegally copy intellectual property. They will also punish anyone who allows any communication about such piracy. Since the Internet was built on the ideals of allowing people to freely communicate, punishing people who allow free communication will severely hinder the Internet. These bills would mandate censorship of the Internet, punishing people who allow free speech.
On Wednesday, Wikipedia and other web sites are going dark in protest of these bills. I support their protests. While shutting off access to the sites may seem extreme, it is only an example of what could happen to those sites if these bills are allowed to pass.