Archive: November 6, 2008
More reactions to the Obama victory and our new President...
Powerline: Ten thesis on President-elect Obama. And later: "The Greatest Irony of the just-concluded Presidential campaign, as I've said before, is that both John McCain and Barack Obama began the primaries as candidates whose main focus was on foreign affairs. Obama was the antiwar candidate, McCain the national security hawk. By yesterday those positions, which largely drove the early primaries, had become almost irrelevant. McCain proved right on the surge in Iraq, but because he was right the war has pretty much been won and therefore is no longer a compelling issue." Yep, the defining issue in this election became the economy; who knew?
The Horses's mouth: A first for the United States (The first President(elect) who is a body surfer from Hawaii :)
Steven Den Beste (!): Not the end of the world. "I think this election is going to be a 'coming of age' moment for a lot of people. They say, 'Be careful what you wish for' and a lot of people got their wish yesterday. And now they're bound to be disappointed. Not even Jesus could satisfy all the expectations of Obama's most vocal supporters, or fulfill all the promises Obama has made." Steven is a thoughtful voice, I miss him!
Fred Wilson: Barack Hussein Obama, President of the United States. Fred lists six things he thinks we'll get from an Obama administration: 1) A world class management team, 2) Honesty, 3) A steady hand, 4) Diplomacy, 5) Fairness, 6) Leadership. I hope he's right, especially about Honesty and Fairness. We'll see. [ via Brad Feld ]
Dave Winer: Sarah we hardly knew ya. "When she was announced as a candidate I was virtually alone in believing the choice wouldn't age well. When I turned out to be correct, I didn't want to gloat, because the election wasn't over, and there was no way to be absolutely sure. Now we are... Palin is no longer a candidate, she's a punchline." Ouch! I liked Sarah, and still do. It will be interesting to see if she remains a player on the national stage or is reduced to a footnote. In their effort to elect Obama, the MSM sure did a number on her, it might be hard for her to recover. But you could have said that about McCain, too :)
Condoleezaa Rice reacts... Man, I really like her. I still think it was too bad that association with the Bush Presidency prevented her from being considered as John McCain's running mate. She would have been perfect - smart, experienced, articulate, balanced... oh yeah and the most powerful black woman on the planet.
CNet: John Doerr's advice to Obama: Bill Joy. "The VC endorses the idea of appointing a CTO for the country who could focus on energy and green tech." Huh, I like Bill Joy, but he seems like too much of a theorist. How about Meg Whitman :)
Economist: the economic challenges facing Barack Obama. "He had always planned for the economy to be his priority. Just not this economy." His choices for the economic leaders in his administration will be crucial.
Today was a perfect day. I can't tell you all the reasons why, but it was... among other things the weather was perfect; sunny, warm, light breeze, clear, the kind of day on which you realize why you love living in Southern California.
And the kind of day on which you realize why you love cycling; in the afternoon I had a wonderful ride from Carlsbad up through the marine base at Camp Pendleton.
On the way up I passed the Oceanside pier, and stopped to admire the, um, scenery. The sun was shining, people were out and about, it was great. I met a couple from Montana out here on vacation - they asked me to take their picture - and they told me it was snowing at their ranch. They asked if it was always like this out here, and I said... yes, of course :)
The Camp Pendleton base is always cool; lots of military hardware on display. (Yes, they let cyclists ride through the base, all you have to do is show your drivers license. I love it, the kids who work there are as impressive as their toys.) Today was especially great because just as I was heading back, my ride was interrupted by a convoy of tanks and troop carriers crossing the road. Perfect timing. The cool thing about these tanks, they make no noise! Only the sound of their treads on the concrete. Spooky.
I headed back down the coast with a tailwind, flying along at 25mph, and stopped at the Oceanside pier again just in time to catch the sun setting. How perfect was that?
A beautiful ride on a beautiful day. And at the end, an awe-inspiring nightfall with amazing colors stretched across the sky. Perfect.
Wrapping up my perfect day, the Ole filter makes a pass, and finds it's all happening...
I meant to call this out earlier because I think it's important and it has soaked up a fair amount of think time from me: Josh Newman's observations about Confidence and Comfort, as he slips into something more. I'll probably post more about this; right now I'm confident that confidence matters, but still trying to get comfortable with the idea of comfort :)
Related: trying to figure out how humor fits in... I've always felt like a good sense of humor was an essential part of being attractive to investors, women, or anyone, and yet somehow while humor is compatible with confidence (especially self-deprecating humor), it seems a bit at odds with being comfortable. A lot of humor is a bit edgy and derives from discomfort. Some humor even causes discomfort...
The Economist notes the axeman cometh:
… current wisdom among axe wielders is that in the last downturn, joints were allowed to sit idly for far too long before they were carved. This time, they intend to cut early, expecting it will buy them the freedom and legitimacy with their board to expand quickly once recovery begins—when unemployment will be high enough to prevent prospective employees from being too squeamish about their new boss’s past enthusiasm for axe wielding. This augurs a fairly rapid rise in unemployment.
On the other hand, many firms are already stretched thin, with vastly more efficient human-resource management than in the past, so big reductions will not just remove fat, they also risk damaging muscle, unless accompanied by some significant and well-designed organizational restructuring—which is never easy to do right at a time of intense budget pressure.
Yahoo reports jobless rate bolts to 14-year high of 6.5 percent. "The nation's unemployment rate bolted to a 14-year high of 6.5 percent in October as another 240,000 jobs were cut, far worse than economists expected and stark proof the economy is deteriorating at an alarmingly rapid pace." Sadly, this is a snowball rolling down hill; as more people are laid off, the economy declines further, forcing more companies to cut more jobs.
The market is down incredibly since the election, and Instapundit ponders whether it's fair to blame Obama. Yes, it is.
In this economy, self-sufficient is the new sexy. At the personal and business level...
Change you can believe in? President-elect Obama launches change.gov. There is a "blog", but they're confused; it looks like it is really a stream of press releases. Sigh. [ via Ars Technica ]
David Pogue reviews the Pico projector - wow, how cool! Definitely a new product category and one destined for major adoption... Please Santa, I've been a good boy :)
Well this sucks - the uber-cool "Mexican walking fish" nears extinction. It is too cool, surely evolution cannot be so heartless?
Did you see this? California gives green light to high-speed train. "Voters in California this week agreed to bankroll a multi-billion dollar high-speed railway system, with technology to come from either Japan or Europe... The train would connect San Francisco to Los Angeles and would cost some 45 billion dollars, according to news reports, which said the measure was approved by a vote of some 52 percent to about 48 percent." It would be cool, but don't hold your breath. That $45B is bound to double before the first track is laid...
Wired News with a blast from the past: November 7, 1932: Radio Enters the 25th Century. "1932: Space adventurer Buck Rogers debuts on CBS radio. The science fiction show, eventually called Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, will delight loyal fans over a span of 15 years and inspire aficionados for decades more." What a different time that was, can you imagine how strange and amazing it must have been to contemplate space travel in 1932?
And so here we have the five awesomest TV and Movie spaceships... not a bad list, but sadly incorrect, as it completely omits the Enterprise! What? I have to agree with the Romulan warbird choice, however, that is kickass-looking...
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this date in:
Correlation vs. Causality
The Tyranny of Email
Try, or Try Not
Books and Wine
God and Beauty
Moving Mount Fuji
Rock 'n Roll
IQ and Populations
Are You a Bright?
The Joy of Craftsmanship
The Emperor's New Code
The Return of the King
Religion vs IQ
In the Wet
solving bongard problems
the nuclear option
estimating in meatspace
On the Persistence of Bad Design...
Texas chili cookoff
almost famous design and stochastic debugging
may I take your order?
New Yorker covers
Death Rider! (da da dum)
how did I get here (Mt.Whitney)?
the Law of Significance
Daniel Jacoby's photographs
the first bird
Gödel Escher Bach: Birthday Cantatatata
Father's Day (in pictures)
your cat for my car
Jobsnotes of note
world population map
no joy in Baker
where are the desktop apps?
still the first bird