Archive: November 1, 2004

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Ole's voter guide

Monday,  11/01/04  12:55 AM

Here it is, Ole's voter guide.  If you're not a Californian citizen, feel free to skip this post.

Okay, here we go:

  • Proposition 1AYes.  Helps ensure local revenue is spent locally.
  • Proposition 59Yes.  Makes government more open.  Won't really do much but harmless.
  • Proposition 60Yes.  Top vote getters from each party's primary appear on general ballet.  This is essentially what happens today, somewhat helps minority parties.  Hopefully 62 passes, if not, this would be better than nothing.
  • Proposition 60ANo.  Requires that proceeds from state property sales would be used to pay off specific bonds.  Not a bad idea but voters should not be micromanaging the budget.  This started as part of proposition 60 (believe it or not), but was so unrelated that a judge ordered it be a separate proposition.
  • Proposition 61No.  $750M bond for children's hospitals.  Look, I'm all for medical care for children, but California is broke and we can't afford to borrow for this sort of thing.
  • Proposition 62Yes.  Any citizen could vote for any candidate in the primary elections (regardless of part).  This is important, it would bring both parties back toward the center.  I hope this passes which would make 60 irrelevant.
  • Proposition 63No.  1% personal income tax on income over $1M to fund health services for the mentally ill.  A good cause, but not a good way to do it.  Special interest taxes are bad.
  • Proposition 64No.  Arnold calls this "stop shakedown lawsuits" but actually this protects big companies against liability suits without accomplishing genuine tort reform.
  • Proposition 65No.  An early version of 1A with klunkier provisions.  Vote yes on 1A instead.
  • Proposition 66Yes.  Limits "three strikes" law to violent and serious felonies.  This just makes sense, and would save millions in prison costs.  Three strikes has not proven to be much of a deterrent anyway, and it sure inhibits rehabilitation efforts.
  • Proposition 67No.  Increases surcharge on mobile phones for emergency medical services.  Another good cause done in a bad way.  These special taxes don't really work out.
  • Proposition 68No.  Along with 70, would enable significant expansion of Indian gaming.  68 permits more casinos near residential areas.  I think the whole idea that Indian reservations have different laws than the rest of the state is ridiculous.
  • Proposition 69Yes.  DNA database for felons.  This is a good thing.  I don't mind the privacy implications.
  • Proposition 70No.  See 68.  This bribes the state to keep gaming exclusive for Indian reservations.  Completely and totally absurd and doesn't have a chance of passing.
  • Proposition 71No.  $3B bond issue to fund stem cell research.  Okay, this one was hard for me, because I really really think stem cell research is a good thing.  However California is broke and we can't afford this.  Also, I don't think government funding is the best way for these technologies to develop.  Better the state should help by staying out of the way of academia and private enterprise.
  • Proposition 72No.  Requires minimum health care coverage to be offered by medium and large businesses.  This is the kind of law that makes doing business in California so expensive, and which drives business to other states and offshore.  Let the market deal with these issues.

And if you live in Ventura County...

  • Proposition AYes.  0.25% sales tax for purpose of land preservation and open space creation.  We really don't need more residential expansion into the hills.
  • Proposition BYes.  0.5% sales tax for purpose of highway maintenance.  This won't pass but we really need this money, since the state is broke.

Thanks for your attention!


'Twas the Night Before

Monday,  11/01/04  09:45 PM

As benefits election eve, some election blogging...

As usual, Cox & Forkum nail the truth, about Decision 2004

Bush supporters are voting against terrorism, Kerry supporters are voting against Bush.

The New York Post Editorializes: "If President Bush is re-elected tomorrow, the victory will have come despite the best efforts of two erstwhile American journalistic icons - The New York Times and CBS News."  I think in the future blatent media bias will be seen as "the story" of the 2004 elections. 

The other candidate for "the story" of 2004; the role of bloggers.  As C|Net reports, Blogs play critical role in campaigns

Bill Whittle's Thoughts on the Election.  "People are telling you that Tuesday will be the most important election of your lives.  That is not true.  The most important election of your lives was held on Tuesday, November 7th, 2000.  You just didn't know it.  Neither did I."  He voted for Gore, and after 9/11 he was glad Gore didn't win. 

I remember the evening of Tuesday, November 7th, 2000, like it was yesterday.  I was in a country club bar in Princeton, New Jersey, celebrating a business deal with some new partners.  They were all staunch Republicans, rooting for Bush, I was a not-so-staunch Democrat, rooting for Gore.  We stayed up confidently expecting a decision sometime that night.  Ha.  Pretty interesting, every ten minutes brought a new prediction about Florida, a new twist.  Little did we know then it would take over a month before Florida was carried by Bush with 537 votes. 

Don't think your vote doesn't count!  Especially if you live in Florida :)

Virginia Postrel: How can you vote for a guy like that?  "I'm not picking a boyfriend here either, or, for that matter, an intellectual mentor.  Given the current balance of power in Congress, there are only two things the president can significantly affect: foreign policy and regulatory policy.  I prefer Bush to Kerry on both.  It's a cold calculation.

Glenn Reynolds thinks Osama Bin Laden is an economic illiterate.  "Iraq and Afghanistan together have cost us less than $300 billion, including the money Bush is going to ask for next year.  In the same period, the US economy will have grossed about 36 trillion dollars.

On a lighter note: The Onion's 2004 Election Guide.  Real journalistic talent, with no bias. 

Wrapping up - the latest update from Electoral Vote Predictor is Kerry 298, Bush 231.  "We have the most studied election in the history of the world.  And what's the conclusion?  Nobody knows."  So, I don't know either, but if Bush wins it will be because of The Right Issue.  Way back in March I wrote: 

"I think Democrats are making a big mistake by featuring the war on terrorism as an election issue.  This is an issue on which they cannot win...  The best thing terrorists could do if they want Kerry to win - and who doesn't doubt that they do - is to keep things quiet and hope the electoral debate shifts to economic and social issues, on which Bush is much more vulnerable."


Monday,  11/01/04  10:25 PM

Well, it seems I've finally caught up from my four month blogging hiatus.  I'm down to a handful of entries in my RSS reader, from over 300.  Onward... 

So, I post about trying to lose some weight, and I post my 2004 California voter guide.  Which do you think got more feedback?  Seriously, you guys are great :)

The Desktop Search Land-Grab.  Of Google and Microsoft, and X1, and Blinkx...  So I actually think this is far from a done deal.  I don't mind Google or Microsoft indexing my blog, but I don't want them indexing my hard drive.  I don't trust them, their ambitions are too large. 

First we had the iPodDownload plug in, which enabled any song to be pulled off any iPod, and which Apple broke with an update, and which we can now fix.  Now we have Open Pod, which does the same thing.  See also Dave Winer's comments, and Marc Cantor's...  Apple is not helping themselves with this behaviour. 

Dave wonders how Griffin's iTalk works?  And then finds out how.  It does look pretty cool; essentially it turns your iPod into a spiffy voice recorder. 

Hey, this is cool: Amazon's A9 toolbar now available for Firefox!  Cool on two levels, first, since I use Firefox exclusively as my day-in-day-out browser, I can now try A9, and second, it shows the extent to which Firefox is making inroads on Internet Explorer. 

Browser statistics from Critical Section, month of October 2004: 

  • Internet Explorer - 48% (all platforms)
  • Firefox - 16%
  • Safari - 5%
  • Opera - 1%

The remaining 30% was a random collection of bots, spiders, and various other browsers.

Limecat is not pleased.  More proof, if any were needed, that you can find anything on the 'net.  [ via Ned Batchelder

How to tell your personality type from your code.  I'm a combination of cynical and realist :)  [ via #!/usr/bin/girl

Rolling Stone: Rock's 10 Wildest Myths.  [ via J.P.Butler

Clive Thompson notes the latest issue of National Geographic, which has the cover story "Was Darwin Wrong?"  I'll spare you the suspense: No.  It is a terrific article but of course with their readership it is likely preaching to the choir.  Of course even if Darwin was wrong it doesn't legitimize creationism as a scientific theory.  But the evidence is overwhelming. 

From Addision at Grouchy Old Cripple: The Cat with the Hat.
Excellent Photoshopmanship! 

Tonight I did a bit of blogrollcleaning; I checked all the links in my extended blogroll.  I pruned the dead links (few) and the dead blogs (many).  Lots of great stuff there, and variety like you can't believe.  Check 'em out

Finally, here we have the Why Knot? tie-tying machine, which ties your ties in a mere 562 steps.  I am not making this up. 




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