Saturday, December 06, 2008

"Worldwide, Employment on a Sharp Decline" -

This is a very informative and chilling story about unemployment trends here and around the world in both the manufacturing and service sectors.

Despite everything that has happened in web-based services, and specifically on the site, there is NOTHING here that in anyway helps a reader/customer who would like to see next month's (if that is when it comes) update of this chart. Why cannot the NYTimes offer either a link to the place where it will appear or at least promise to send me an e-mail if and when the Times chooses to publish an update on this story? Instead, the person reading this story in the paper and/or viewing it here comes up against a deadend. That, increasingly, seems to me to be incredibly short-sighted when it so relatively easily can be fixed with great value delivered to all in the process.

Monday, December 01, 2008

"Survey of teens reveals entrenched habits of dishonesty — stealing, lying, and cheating rates climb to alarming rates" - Josephson Institute

"Presto - Send email and photos to people who don't have a computer"

This service continues to intrigue me, but I think it is just too expensive to be a viable substitute for home newspaper delivery unless heavily supported by advertisers, but why not? Imagine if a newspaper stops printing and distributing the Monday paper, for example - a real possibility, and offers one of these printers in its place at no cost; all you have to do is pay for the paper and ink? There is some value in thinking of having 8-10 pages printed out next to the breakfast coffee in the morning. Many newspapers tried this with faxed editions but they did not work out all that well. The difference here could be the quality of the color printing and a tailoring of the content in those 8-10 pages BOTH in terms of advertising and news.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Hundreds Feared Dead in Riots in Nigeria -

I hope that this story will merit equal attention to that given to the tragedy in Mumbai. Why shouldn't it? If, indeed, 300 people turn out to be dead in Nigeria, is that not worth twice the coverage given to 170 murdered in Mumbai?

If this does not get the same attention, we have a lot of questions to ask ourselves about news judgments, news priorities, technology, and strategic interests.

At the end of the day, it is horrific when anyone dies in any of these incidents and as human beings we are obliged to divide our attention span - whether measured in minutes or nanoseconds among all of them.

Each death is exactly equal to every other death whether the person carries an Indian, Nigerian or, yes, even a US passport.

If anything less than equality, we all bear and bare the shame.

Friday, November 28, 2008

"Wal-Mart Employee Trampled to Death by Customers" -

This is not tolerable in our society. We need to grieve for the person who died and work with friends and neighbors to convince them that such animal behavior is simply not acceptable to us or anyone else. Walmart has an obligation to provide crowd control, and they could have prevented this based on this report, but the crux of the problem and the cause of this calamity is greedy people losing touch with humanity over some ultimately stupid purchase. Everyone who pushed anyone in that crowd - every one of them - shares full responsibility for this death, and I hope they each suffer a lifetime sentence of extreme guilt for what their negligence caused.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

"Remembering Tom Gish, A Voice Of Appalachia" - NPR

I sure hope we will continue to have, to support, and to celebrate the Tom and Pat GISH's of the world, however endangered their species has always been and continues to be.

Monday, November 24, 2008

"Saudi prince Alwaleed bin Talal comes to rescue of Citigroup" -

The Prince may still be the largest single shareholder in Citigroup. It is curious, given the amount of control that even 4-5% of ownership can wield, that this is not mentioned in any news report I have seen today on the US actions to bailout the company. Surely, the Prince stands to gain considerably by this move, and I think we all need to know this. And we should all know more, too, about who are the other owners of Citigroup. How many employees at Citigroup make more than, say, 150,000(USD)/year? Given how badly the company has been managed, shouldn't "we" who are giving them all this money insist as a condition of the action insist that no employee earn more than 150,000/year? Those who are unhappy with that cap can seek employment elsewhere. Imagine explaining to the bulk of Americans why 150,000/year is not enough?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

"Amanpour to Lead Daily Show on CNN" -

This is, of course, very positive news. Let's just hope that apparent increased interest in news from outside the US continues strong for US viewers.

"A Rewired Bully Pulpit - Big, Bold and Unproven" -

Whether it be for the White House and the Presidency or for any company in the US or the world, or any person, the free technology at our disposal allows us to create vast empires of the interconnected. We know it is cheap and we know that it works. What we do not know very well is how to manage it. I think the world is about to start climbing a steep learning curve of how to use all these tools constructively. It is far more than simply imposing rules on usage, etc; it is a fundamentally different way of looking at how we make the best use of vast groups of people to whom we are instantaneously connected, with whom we may agree or disagree, but whom we cannot ultimately control. I am not sure that the communications and media worlds, let alone US Presidents, have ever been confronted with such an immense challenge.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

"Associated Press staff to shrink 10 pct, CEO says" - Yahoo! Finance

In our interent world today, can we say that we are better informed than we used to be, and are we ready to replace the Associated Press with sifted and unsifted words read by people using the internet?

"Out of kilter: Stock slide hits NYT activists" - Reflections of a Newsosaur

Will we look back on the first decade of the 21st century and see it as the years when we lost The New York Times and replaced it with something or some other things? It increasingly is looking that way.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

"Is Out Of Town News On Its Way Out?" - NPR

The passing of a newsstand anywhere in the world is a very sad occasion. Let's hope this does not turn out to be another of those.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"Live Piracy Map 2008"

What a great use of Google Maps technology..... It's astounding on so many levels that in 2008 we are looking at a map of the world and probably finding more incidents of piracy in recent months than in any other similar period of time in world history, even when pirates piracy were at their zenith (when? probably in the 18th or 19th centuries?).

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"Pendant la campagne américaine, le Web a eu plus d'influence sur la presse que sur les électeurs" -

The New York Times - Breaking News, World News & Multimedia

I noticed today for the first time that the site as a "minimize ads" button up near the top of the page. Maybe it is there because of the obnoxious Mac ad that appears there. The minimize ads button is a good idea but at least I need to wait a long time after clicking for it to take effect. It seems like almost as dumb an idea as accepting the Mac ads in the first place. Why cannot newspapers create a more seamless presentation of editorial and advertising content on their sites? I am not suggesting any compromise on the bright line between the two, but make it easier for the customer to consume it all without one working relatively well and the other slowing down the whole process. Why can't the consumer experience design the page and its presentation instead of us being forced to accept whatever each contributing party - editorial and advertising - sends down the internet pipe?

Monday, November 03, 2008

Print on newsprint at home?

Reading another story about the Christian Science Monitor moving out of print entirely, and seeing the publisher's comment about how we all enjoy reading the paper with a coffee, it made me wonder if anyone has come up with a version of newsprint that computer printers can handle? Imagine if you could program your printer to print out the very latest version of the paper for you in the morning just as your coffee is brewing? Instead of going outside to get a plastic bag full of newsprint, you simply stop at your printer and go from there?

A good omen?

Walking to get the newspaper today, this is what I saw here on Mt Boron. One end of the rainbow is in the heart of Nice, it passes over the observatory, with some interesting structural ties to the US through Gustave EIFFEL, and then drops into the Alpes Maritimes. In any case, rainbows are nice and its appearance today says a lot for me about the next President of the United States.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Thursday, October 30, 2008

"Share Information - Independent News & Media"

The president of the World Association of Newspapers is the chief operating officer of this company.

Monday, October 27, 2008

"The Star-Ledger of Newark Plans 40% Cut" -

Although Newark has its unique characteristics, especially in terms of the chronic problems of the city itself, I place a lot of stock in the NEWHOUSE family and their commitment to the newspaper business. When they are forced to make such cuts, it says a lot to me about how dire are the straits where newspapers generally find themselves today in so many places.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

People and Their Press - Mt Alban, Nice

This fellow seemed so engrossed in reading today's paper that he barely paid any attention to me or the spectacular view from Mt Alban in Nice, not far from one of the homes of Sir Elton John.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Pop up using connection in France

I have found this to be a lot more useful than I at first expected. It is nice to be able to see the weather so handily; it just seems to work better than many of the other pages with weather on them.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

People and Their Press

I am going to start posting some photos of how people interact with "their" press -- their newspaper or other printed publications. This fellow passed me on the quai in the Port of Nice, France, today, and I was struck by his finger-tip hold of the paper. I could not help but wonder if he had read anything yet, was savoring the thought of reading it soon, or hoping that not too much of the ink would come off on his fingers! It was only after I took the picture that I realized his walking, somewhat forlornly, off into the distance was so well matched with the speed limit there - 30. That is, indeed, the end of the story.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Friday, October 03, 2008

"Huge Offshore Wind Farm Wins Approval" - New York Times Blog

Would we do better in North Carolina to "drill, baby, drill" these structures offshore?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

"Governor signs bill banning 'texting' by motorists" - San Jose Mercury News

When can we expect any governor of North Carolina to sign a similar measure into law? It cannot come too soon.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

"Two out of three N.C. residents support offshore oil drilling" - Elon Poll

I find this result startling. It is an indictment of so many things that I hold dear. In the end, it shows that our education system (and others) have failed to produce citizens who are capable of taking on board important facts and then processing it toward the formation of an opinion. I only hope that it is limited to a failure of the education system.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

"DAY ONE: HONG KONG « The Ground Truth"

This seems to be a new blog for Global News Enterprises by its editor. My first impression of the blog was that someone had died.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

"Les quotidiens gagnent des lecteurs, mais perdent des ventes" - Le

Theatrics in television "news"

I get very discouraged so often when I watch television news. Today, it was NBC "covering" an important story about an American woman in Italy who may face a trial and charges of murdering her roommate at school there. How does NBC cover it? With ruffles and flourishes, they bring up a reporter in London, who seems to have tape from someone of the accused being led into court. Do I have any more confidence in a report about this that comes from London because it is only one hour difference in local time than New York which is 6 hours behind? No. If television reporters cannot be in the place where news is unfolding, they are better off working from a central office and using the communications and other resources there to do the best they can. To make believe that a reporter in Rome is on top of the story because she is there is ludicrous.

"Why Experience Matters" -

"Controversial film on Islam delivered nationwide" -

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Monetization platforms

This week, I listened to a speech by Ken LOWE, the ceo of Scripps Interactive Networks, the company that includes the Food Network and HGTV, among others.

It was an interesting sales pitch for his company, but the words that stuck in my mind were newspapers, journalism, monetize, platforms and the food and home categories.

One could have a conversation today with a lot of super jock media people and they could move among some of those words very easily. At least, there would be no comprehension problem.

But I think they illustrate a big problem. They do not comfortably hang together and the worlds they represent - the world of serious journalism and the world of glitzy gizmo marketers - are like oil and water. They really do not mix.

In Mr. LOWE, we in the audience saw a tortured effort to bring the two together. It did not work, and it left me more discouraged about the capacity of the electronic media - of all kinds - to preserve principles and priorities that have served us so well in less animated forms.

"Global Food Trends"

Here is another good resource from the World Bank for understanding what's happening with food prices.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

"Haiti, Struck and Struck Again, Stunned by New Suffering" -

Why shouldn't we be treating this as the disaster that it is, and seeing nonstop coverage of it, and being told all of the things we can do to help? It's so disheartening to see this relegated to the dustbins of so many news organizations. If we did not have The New York Times (and National Public Radio), who would tell us all that is in this story? I shudder to think that we may be headed to that point. Even the Christian Science Monitor no longer seems able to cover the country, our neighbor.

"Panels tell history of Fermanagh chiefs" - The Fermanagh Herald

My late grandfather's name was Hugh MAGUIRE, no doubt picked by his parents to remember another who lived 300 years earlier, but only some miles to the north.

Monday, September 08, 2008

"Ike flooding kills 58 more in rain - soaked Haiti" -

If this were Louisiana, how would the US and Americans, and their media, be reacting? What, exactly, is the difference between someone who dies or is left homeless in Haiti and someone in Louisiana who dies or is left homeless?

Consider this....

The distance between Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti and New Orleans is 1,359 miles.

The distance between Port-au-Prince and Washington, DC is 1,438 miles

The distance between New Orleans and Boston is 1,348 miles.

"Evidence Points to Civilian Toll in Afghan Raid" -

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Designing for what you see from inside....

It has always seemed to me that what you see from inside a house is far more important than how the house looks from the outside. The only exception to that rule is when you have an outside area in which you sit a lot and gaze back at the house. Otherwise, the rest of it is all for show, and if that's where your ego sits, have at it. For me, I'd much rather profit from what I can see when I am actually in and using my home.

That said, I have not seen a good book that approaches home design from this literal perspective.

An item on CBS Sunday Morning today about architect John LAUTNER came close in touching on the point of his designs.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Made in North Carolina

I have been looking around as I shop here in Chapel Hill, NC, and I remain very surprised to find so little that is clearly labeled (so you can see it without sending out a label search party) as having been made here in North Carolina. The time seems to have come when people might value such products over others, for many reasons, and retailers ought to work harder with their suppliers to make sure customers know which products are those from North Carolina.

Our local Farmers' Market has a rule that everything sold there must be grown or produced within a fixed number of miles of the market. Why couldn't retailers establish simple labels or sections - as they now increasingly do with organic - to call attention to that which is local in the store?

Saturday, August 30, 2008

"Newsstands of Tomorrow Get Mixed Reviews Today" -

Some of what I learned from newspapers today - 30 Aug

+ That the November election in North Carolina is up for grabs = News & Observer
+ That we have many unmarked train crossings in NC, and failing to stop at each can cause death = News & Observer
+ That an investigation into these deaths in Afghanistan appears to be moving forward in a fair manner = The New York Times

Friday, August 29, 2008

"Palin's Wikipedia Entry Gets Overhaul" - NPR

Some of what I learned from newspapers today - 29 Aug

+ That one of our neighborhood restaurants is earning a rave review = News & Observer
+ That news of the choice of a Republican Vice Presidential candidate is evolving quickly = The New York Times
+ That the renovation of a square near home in Nice, France has now been completed = Nice Matin
+ That while I love lots of windows in a house, there are many negatives that need to be addressed = The Wall Street Journal
+ That there are significant challenges, even with high fuel prices, in reducing automobile use = The New York Times

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Some of what I learned from newspapers today - 28 Aug

+ That our local regional newspaper might sell its Chapel Hill office - The Independent
+ That the apparent squabbling among MSNBC on-air people seems real - The Wall Street Journal
+ That Gustav, the soon-to-be hurricane again is headed toward the Gulf and possible strike in an area including New Orleans - The New York Times

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Some of what I learned from newspapers today - 27 Aug

+ That our only local department store is in serious trouble - Dillard's = Wall Street Journal and the Memphis Business Journal
+ That there is a town in Japan about the same size as my community in North Carolina that hopes to eliminate all waste going to landfills and incinerators by 2020 = The Guardian

Monday, August 25, 2008


On many levels, we have all become more interconnected than we used to be. We say this all the time, and for the most part, it is true.

But is it true when it comes to full extent of the physical, geographical communities in which we live? Do we feel a sense of being closer to neighbors or neighborhood businesses because they have websites, e-mail lists, etc?

I find myself putting more and more of those people and businesses into a pile labeled largely unresponsive.

Don't we have to go a step further on the interconnectedness front and figure out how we can follow more of the people aspect of all this? Do you know your neighbor's full "story"? Do you know the checkout clerks' stories at the supermarket? Can you communicate with them on that level, or is it limited to the mostly superficial hello?

Despite all this stuff flying about in the internet and over phone lines, we still have a huge amount of work to do.

Stay tuned. Or, better yet, stay connected!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

OBAMA vice presidential announcement

It's interesting to reflect on how the news of Joe BIDEN's selection made its way into my e-mail in-box this morning, long before I got up.

First observation is that it is surprising that no one seems to have come up with a way to alert us to news with an alarm clock. In other words, how do we say to a machine that we want "you" to wake us up if certain news is appears during the night? I have seen no such option.

Second observation is when I received the several e-mail messages of the night:

NYTimes - 1:04 AM
WSJournal - 1:06 AM
Minn Star-Tribune - 1:11 AM
Huffington Post - 1:32 AM
OBAMA campaign - 4:58 AM

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Printing blogs

Among modern life's persistent irritants is at least my inability to print items that I find in blogs on The New York Times site and in many other places. Why is it that blog technology makes it so much harder to print what's on the screen than is the case with most websites?

Monday, August 18, 2008

"Duke CEO to make its case for Save-a-Watt" -

"Export Boom Helps Farms, but Not American Factories" -

And what has this meant for NC agricultural exports?

Here are the state figures (the years appear first and correspond to the numbers below - here is the link to a clear chart):

North Carolina Agricultural Exports by Commodity (in millions of dollars)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

"Amid Ruined New Orleans Neighborhoods, a Gadfly Buzzes" -

On one level it is really a great shame that this story could be written in the first place, but accepting the necessity of what occurred, this piece does a great job of profiling what someone with excellent intentions - it appears - can do when armed with a strong will, curiosity and a commitment to share a story. That's at the heart of what makes journalism so important, especially when greater accountability seems to be the key result.

Monday, August 11, 2008

"Barack Obama | Change We Can Believe In | Be the First to Know" - OBAMA website

This is done extremely well, I must say. It will be very interesting to learn how many people sign up to be the "first" to learn of the VP choice and through what medium.

"New York Times to Roll Out TimesPeople Social Networking Site" -

If the New York Times does this well, it may very well succeed. I like the idea of being able to connect with - or at least follow - people who also value and read the NYT.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

"John Edwards story -- the readers react" - News & Observer

I feel very strongly about the importance of fully reporting the EDWARDS story. See my comments on the second page of this article.

"Flush With Energy" -

Comparing how the US is doing with how Denmark has done on energy policy is very helpful.

There is another comparison I would like to suggest. It is Denmark and North Carolina. Denmark is a lot smaller than North Carolina with its 5.5 million population alongside of about 9 million in North Carolina.


Why cannot North Carolina - especially in this election year - adopt a plan to make it energy independent? What is unique about Denmark's wind, for example? How about the sun in North Carolina? Down the line, there may even be some offshore energy to be carefully harvested? Nuclear present and future?

Is it totally unrealistic to think that North Carolina could become the first state in the US to achieve energy independence?

Shouldn't we try?

What is the status of this bill in the state legislature - Energy Independence Act? In fact, it looks like it was passed and signed by the Governor two years ago. However, when you look at the text, it seems so little. Can't we do better? Wouldn't it serve everyone's best interests?

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Book Review - 'The Hebrew Republic,' by Bernard Avishai - Review -

This sounds to me to be an approach that might yet bring peace to this troubled corner of the Mediterranean. Let's all give it some serious consideration whether we be Israelis and/or Jews or all others.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Op-Ed Columnist - Gail Collins - Unity Is Crowded - Op-Ed -

I'm a no-erosion type OBAMA supporter. At least I don't want to see his stands on issues about which I care a lot changed a great deal. Are there some issues where I would like him to change his views? Sure. But I think Gail COLLINS, as she so often does, has gotten the chock on the line in this column. I hope OBAMA is listening and soon draws that line and steps very rarely beyond it in reshaping his "message".

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Sud de France

This is the site for a region of France in the far south. They are trying to promote all of their agricultural products under a mark - Sud de France (South of France).

Does North Carolina do the same? Do we see many products of North Carolina that carry a North Carolina label?

New Role for Lara Logan, CBS Correspondent Critical of War Coverage -

Monday, June 16, 2008

"The New Progressive Book Club Is Geared to Liberals" -

What a great opportunity this presents for localizing this to places like Chapel Hill. It could all be organized on the book club's website, which may already be its plan.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

"Produits Casino - Aide culinaire - 4 muffins blancs"

Which US supermarkets provide this type of information about their products?

Friday, June 13, 2008

"Critics and News Executives Split Over Sexism in Clinton Coverage" -

Some people really enjoy taking on the media. Give them any issue, and they will blame the "big", usually, media for it or for the way it turned out.

In the rough and tumble of political discourse, some people will say things that they really mean and regret saying them later in order not to offend. Others will say things they did not mean, but inadvertently saidnonetheless. There are many permutations of that; the point is that we as a country accept this and value it.

For those who prefer highly balanced and sterilized "media" "coverage" where all reporting and commentary is run through dozens of rinse cycles before it is presented, you are welcome to that world. I prefer the one that lets reporters and commentators say what's on their minds and allow them or others to change or correct the impression or the facts.

This campaign is very important. Let's not burden it with someone's irritation over an imperfect world. Get on with life, instead.

"Administration Strategy for Detention Now in Disarray" -

Beyond this decision is the even more important division it demonstrates between John McCAIN and Barack OBAMA. Neither candidate is perfect, of course, but I think we can count on OBAMA to fight for the rights of all people, as demonstrated here, and for John McCAIN to advocate the interersts of a select group, also as shown here. In picking the next justice to sit on the U.S. Supreme Court, I fervently hope it will be someone much closer to OBAMA's thinking than to McCAIN's.

Friday, June 06, 2008

"Irish voters likely to sink EU treaty, poll shows" - The Guardian

It's astounding that this vote has not gotten more coverage in the US, of all places. I speak as an Irishman in saying so.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

"Paper Or Pricey Plastic?" -

Higher prices do have their benefits. One could add to that headline "...or Bring Your Own", the best solution.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

"U.S. Withdraws Fulbright Grants to Palestinians in Gaza" -

Israel policy is not sustainable. The sooner the US takes a more non-discriminatory policy toward the peoples of the Middle East, the sooner we can all move forward. That may or may not include Israel as we know it, but that all depends on how an Israel un-tethered from the US chooses to behave. We owe it to everyone to stop treating Israel as some kind of chosen land and privileged people. It simply is neither.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


I heard a piece on NPR this morning about "slugging"....essentially, sharing rides for the High Occupancy Vehicle lanes in Northern Virginia. It was really depressing when they got to the point about one of the informal rules being that no one ever gives their name.

Perhaps I am alone, but I think the pendulum has swung way off to one side when it comes to how we treat other people on various modes of conveyance. When was the last time you introduced yourself to someone sitting next to you on on bus or an airplane or a train of any kind, or standing in a long line for something.

How did we get to the point where people react with annoyance to any effort to say hello beyond a forced smile?

COSTCO leading the way....

I am a periodic shopper at COSTCO and always appreciate the chance to return home with my trophies of months-long supplies of various things.

What I just focused on is that COSTCO is way ahead of its time in terms of the waste it produces or does not produce. They have no plastic bags to give out and therefore none get thrown away by cutomers. You can buy reusable plastic bags, which I have done, that include one insulated model, there for COSTCO and other shopping uses. In addition, for those who want to put their purchases in containers, COSTCO always has a bin or two of discarded cardboard boxes available at no charge. Whenever I use that option, I am always certain to send it off to cardboard recycling after I get back to Chapel Hill (from Durham, the closest COSTCO store).
Finally, I notice that I rarely have any waste from packaging I acquire from COSTCO products that I cannot recycle. Virtually none of it goes into the "all other" garbage.

Thursday, May 15, 2008


The more I learn and the more I think about it, the more it seems to me that "we" in the US ought to be supporting democratic states around the world, first, and urging those that impose restrictions based on race or religion to change their policies. There may be reasons to be somewhat supportive for strategic defense alliance reasons, but surely we should not be lauding them across the board.

This applies to Israeil and many other countries.

How is it consistent with "our" values to be as supportive of the Jewish state of Israel? If Israel were simply another country with a commitment to democracy and non-discrimination, its additional strategic importance might justify this. But with the country, in the name of Judaism, so discriminatory with respect to non-Jews, I simply cannot buy the level - monetarily or otherwise - of our support for Israel.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Progress Energy Performing Arts Center "Rip-Off"

Why are we all forced to use Ticketmaster in Chapel Hill, NC in order to buy tickets for an event (at the Progress Energy Center) in Raleigh, NC? The Ticketmaster charges for tickets I am using this week amount to 33% added to the price of the tickets. That's ridiculous when these things can be handled so efficiently today via computer systems and the internet. We should be able to print out our own tickets as do the airlines today.

If you wish to complain about this, the general manager at the Progress Energy Center is a Jim LAVERY - 831-6970.

(This will give you a sense of how behind-the-times they are at the Center..... When you click on the link for parking information you get this page that essentially says you can park wherever you can find a place in downtown Raleigh. Is that helpful or what?)

Thursday, May 01, 2008

"Bringing the World Together Through Film" - New York Times

Barack OBAMA speaks in Chapel Hill 28 April 2008

29 April 2008 - Attending the OBAMA rally in Chapel Hill, NC ..... I support Senator OBAMA's candidacy and have put some money where my fingers are as I type this. You should know that as I offer some reactions to the OBAMA "One-Stop Early Vote Rally" at the Dean Dome on 28 April.

It was a rainy night, as Garrison KEILLOR might have introduced the experience.

So I took an umbrella with me. When I got to the Dean Dome, the security people (still not sure whether they were Secret Service or some other service with American eagles on their sleeves and impressive badges) told me and everyone else that the “staff” for the organizers of the event had said no umbrellas inside...actually, it was "no metal" and so far, I guess that covers all umbrellas. Life gives us so many of these choices.

OBAMA or umbrella?

We all chose the candidate, and that meant a giant collection of umbrellas at the entrances. At least we had a shot of retrieving them unlike all of that stuff confiscated at airports, which on my last flight, do seem to allow umbrellas onboard. The agent told me I would find my umbrella in one of the big barrels that would be at the entrance when I left.

I thought about my umbrella - not a particular favorite - during the event, especially as I gazed at the 18,000 or so other people in the arena.

Well, to put your mind at ease, I walked out at 11:20 or so, and there was my umbrella, right where the agent said it would be! I don't know if others were so lucky or whether there is a rain sale today at the Dean Dome of all the leftovers. I suppose they hold on to the residue for some period of time?

Now that I've gotten that annoying detail out of the way, back to the story.

I did not take a bus this time as they stop running, I am pretty sure, for these late night outings, at least for the return. So I tried to find some other people who wanted to go and thought we could at least car pool. None of my friends was able to make it. I drove to the first sign for the "Smith Center" parking and that was in the new garage more or less across from the new Cancer Center at UNC Hospitals. Parking was free, or I hoped it would be. From there, with my trusty umbrella in hand, I walked to the Center.

I felt a little Pied Piperish as there were only a few ahead of me at first, and others falling in line behind me. But as we wound our way toward the Dome, more people appeared ahead. It was a mostly young crowd - although mighty quiet I thought - and the people I saw as we began to get in line outside the arena seemed to reflect both the larger group inside and the community as a whole - old, young and multi-colored, if you do not count Latinos and Latinas. I heard nor saw not a single reference to them or the Spanish language in the course of the event.

En route to the arena, I passed two guys selling OBAMA buttons (it was t-shirts on the way out), got a flyer from someone on behalf of Hampton DELLINGER running for Lt Governor (and talked with the fellow handing them out about whether Hampton is "from" Durham or Chapel Hill -- he told me I just missed his parents.....delighted to see Hampton and I presume his parents supporting OBAMA, as his father had worked for Bill CLINTON; finding anything about Hampton's support of OBAMA on his website, however, is a fruitless task), and met Jim NEAL from Carrboro, running for the US Senate (he gave me only his hand and no paper!).

Along the way, someone collected the part of the ticket on which you had to give name, rank and serial number. It was curious to me that with all the effective use of the internet by the campaign, there seemed to be something less than a creative effort to use the database of people within driving distance of Chapel Hill to bring them to the event. It will be interesting to see if I receive anything by way of followup via phone, e-mail or snail mail.

In the parking lot were a couple of TV trucks from local stations, contributing at least some very local bad air to the environment, presumably burning gas the whole time we were inside.

I had left home at 8:30 PM and was in the arena (without my umbrella), following a nice rainless walk, at about 8:55. I'd say 80% of the people had arrived at that point, maybe 85%.

There was some excitement in the air, but not as much as I would have expected.

There were a few people on stage setting up things, but the real star was a woman who came out twirling OBAMA t-shirts and tossing them into the crowd the way a stripper might do the same with other articles of apparel! She did a great job. When a guy joined her, he clearly did not have the same savoir faire that she did!

In the stands behind the podium was a large "Chapel Hill for Change" sign, and over to one side a row of sign holders spelling NCforOBAMA. The monitors up high were promoting early voting, and there was one additional OBAMA sign in the hall that I could see, other than small ones that people, especially behind the podium, were holding (and who received some instruction at one point on how to wave them from one of the staff).

A "privileged" group got to stand the whole time (over two hours) in front of the podium. These were the people who reached their arms the highest when trying to catch a flying t-shirt. Another group was ushered in somewhat ahead of OBAMA who must have been the high rollers and some of the visiting firemen and women politicians; they got seats.

There were only a couple of people who may have been reporters sitting at the press desks. It looked pretty deserted. That was a good sign that there would not be major announcements. There were more people running the half-dozen or so TV cameras, but I presume all of them were local stations, although I did not look closely.

There was good music, and I thought it was all recorded stuff carefully picked by the organizers to get the crowd in the right mood. Instead, I learned later, it was a real band! They did a great job, and I wonder who pays the royalties for using what they performed? I am not a good person to identify songs, but I think one might have been "Right Back where We Started From".

And there were, as was reported by at least the Herald-Sun some number of "waves" making their way around the hall. Actually, just a few.

One young guy arrived near me - I was up in the stands, about two-thirds of the way - proudly wearing a t-shirt with Fxxx BUSH in large letters. Several people asked him to pose for photos.

Otherwise, there was only one tie that I saw in the stands; it was a pretty informal crowd. Some of the organizers, and of course the Secret Service, were well-suited for the occasion.

A few people munched on popcorn and soft drinks....

At precisely 9:30, out came a minister (from the Chapel Hill First Baptist Church, Dr. J.R. MANLEY I believe) to deliver a very long prayer that I found very hard to follow. Most every head was bowed for the duration. He said nothing that I could discern about politics, but did talk about love a lot.

Then someone else appeared whose name I did not get, and once he found the flag way up high, we all rose to say the Pledge of Allegiance. It's been a long time since I attended an event where we recited the Pledge en masse.

It was then the turn of Reps David PRICE and Mel WATT to speak. PRICE seemed a little uncomfortable in front of all those people and referred to his notes a little too often. As the former Duke professor he is, it seemed quite appropriate that he rattled off a bunch of wonky issue points, some of which seemed to spark a bit of interest. He got a fair response on ending the Iraq war and next to nothing when he spoke of restoring America's "moral leadership" in the world. WATT was more of a cheerleader and got more juices flowing after noting that PRICE had taken care of the substantive stuff.

The regional director for OBAMA came on stage and tried to whoop up the crowd a bit. He claimed that we were no where near as loud as we should be for "one of the biggest indoor events in the history of the Barack OBAMA campaign". He urged everyone to get to work over the next 8 days, getting a good response from noting North Carolina's ability to make a difference for the first time in the primary process.

He left the stage about 9:50.

I was thinking I should have brought binoculars with me. The couple ahead of me had a pair. I guess there must have been a binocular exception to the no metal rule?

There was no announcement about timing.

I wondered about how much an event like this really costs.

I picked up snippets from the music - coming to America and my country.....that sort of thing.

Next up was Sam PERKINS, I take it a UNC basketball alum and NBA veteran. He talked about why it is so important to stay in school and to "pay attention". He had played so long ago that the Dean Dome had not been built at that time. He talked about wearing the "uniform of hope" and winning the "championship of hope" with OBAMA as the coach. The crowd seemed to like this a lot.

A female UNC senior from another town in North Carolina took the podium next. (OBAMA later wished her a happy 22nd birthday which must have made it quite a birthday for her.) We all gave the late Eve CARSON a moment of silent tribute, and the woman behind me even stopped jabbering on her cellphone at that time. The speaker was very impressive and very committed, talking about how she had traveled to several states to support OBAMA, and noting how a Swedish exchange student friend had given so much of his time for the same cause because he believed so much in the OBAMA candidacy.

She introduced OBAMA to a standing ovation. We knew he was about to appear as the Secret Service - pretty sure this time - had lined the entry walk on both sides standing at conspicuous attention. (They did the same throughout his remarks from strategic points around the podium.)

It was 10:30 and time for the candidate. On stage he came with a number of handshakes and many waves.

He thanked PERKINS and noted work he has done on the Special Olympics and fighting malaria.

I could not help but think how silly it was to sit there and watch the big monitors instead of squinting to see the real person on the stage. Those monitors really turn the experience into nothing more than what you can do at home in a more comfortable seat.

OBAMA thanked Chancellor "MESSER" and then corrected himself (MOESER) from someone in the privileged standing group in front of the podium. And he thanked others from Tarheels for OBAMA to his lead organizer for these big rally events, a UNC alum.

He then gave us his stump speech. The "fierce urgency of now" was followed by words on Iraq and the economy, on energy and education.

It was good to hear it all in one sitting, but nothing new. We listen to bits and pieces too often, and we need to hear all candidates go through the full pitch a couple of times in the campaign to make sure we keep things in perspective.

There seemed to be a little too much at this point about "why" he chose to run.

He did not use teleprompters as best I could tell.

And no notes.

He talked about BUSH and CHENEY and McCAIN, with his key phrases deployed at key moments like assuring us the first two would not be on the ballot in November. CLINTON was next, and she and others were treated quite reverentially.

He was much more critical of lobbyists et al to whom he will not be obliged in any way. (The role of lobbyists apart from campaign contributions is a subject on which I'd love to debate OBAMA; I have some perspectives to offer....)

Throughout, he kept his sense of humor.

And, of course, he used now well-established lines like not hiring someone to play the game better, but hire someone who is going to "change the game plan" to be President.

In his words about energy, he said that the McCAIN proposal to lift federal gas taxes for a while would amount to only about $25 for most people. "Is that the best you can do?," he asked. He noted that the missing taxes would deprive America of funds that would otherwise go to the highway trust fund.

OBAMA got a good response talking about Research Triangle Park and its importance and contribution and the need to do more of that, and he got an even bigger response in talking about paying teachers better.

He did better than PRICE had in getting people revved up about global issues. He talked about Iraq and reminded us of his opposition in 2002 and his promise to bring the war to an end in 2009. "America's back; we are ready to lead again," he told us would be the headline next year. Helping the developing world with health issues, education, and respect for human rights - resolving Darfur - will be at the core of that effort, he said. And he promised that America would once again obey the Constitution and protect and civil liberties.

Bringing everyone together was another big theme. Republicans, independents..... He said we need to reflect "the decency of the American people".

He had reminded his staff, he told us, that after the elbowing et al, they and all of us need to remember what the campaign is "all about". "Don't get distracted" from this, he warned. Don't let comments about a "pastor", a "lapel pin", questions about patriotism or suggestions about being Muslim..... take you away from working to insure that "this country is about every child having an opportunity". He criticized the media for allowing those sorts of issues to "dominate" political coverage for the last "several weeks".

He concluded by talking about "values". He reminded everyone of his upbringing, of the ways in which this country had helped his parents, and about his wife's background as well and her humble beginnings. He seemed so inspired that she might become the "First Lady of the United States". For those who question his patriotism, he told us that his story could not happen "anywhere else on earth". Despite all our "imperfections", "each of us can grab for that dream". We can, together, fight for liberties, make the world more just and more equal, and more unified.

He finished at 11:15.

OBAMA got a standing ovation, shook a lot of hands, I walked out with the crowd, found the umbrella, and walked with a group that had turned once again much quieter than I would have expected back to my car. Yes, the parking was free. And I was back in Southern Village at 11:45.

It was an evening well-spent.....

Why I support Barack OBAMA (in 450 words)

Barack OBAMA offers the people of the United States our best opportunity to rejoin the world in a positive and constructive manner. That’s the primary reason I support him as our next President.

We have so much to offer one another and people everywhere on our shared planet. At home, we can demonstrate once again how much we care about education, how much we can do to improve our environment, how well we can take care of one another, and how fully we can respect the rights and liberties of all. Abroad, we can help others first by showing how we can do these things so much better within our own country, and we can join with those who admire us - and those who do not - to solve problems, to pursue opportunities, and to add at least a little to the lives of so many.

Senator OBAMA brings to the task a perspective that is informed by a young lifetime of diverse experiences. He knows how a different part of the world looks when seen through the eyes of a young person; he knows what it is like to have a real family connection to another place in another land with good people. And he has been through the rigors of a family in the US that has schooled him in love and distance. The Senator has given much already to the people with whom he has worked, and knows, above all, how critically important it is to bring people together. For me, he reflects in so many ways the USA that I salute.

I believe we will see initiatives in his administration that we never have seen in the past. There will be receptiveness to new and different ways of solving our shared problems and new approaches to advancing opportunities for the entire world. I think he will help us better accept the need to compromise, whether we are dealing with terrorists or with agricultural subsidies.

We can do this, as he might say, and I believe we are seeing the birth of inspired leadership for the United States that we need so desperately. Ask yourself, just for example, how you would have handled all of the diversionary attention on Senator OBAMA’s pastor. I believe he did the right thing, trying to solve a problem constructively and, as we all do sometimes, finding himself unable to do so, resolving the problem in another way. That’s the approach I am confident that President OBAMA will take in dealing with the infinitely more important challenges that will greet him on 20 January 2009.

When we "hire" a President, good judgment and honesty top the criteria I believe most important. We have seen enough of Senator OBAMA's commitment to these principles to give me full confidence in him, and for me to give him my vote.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

"Austria: New readership figures full year 2007" - Publicitas Promotion Network

Just in case anyone thought the trend was just a US problem....

"An Online Game So Mysterious Its Famous Sponsor Is Hidden" - The New York Times

There is much too much of this hidden sponsorship going around. Each sponsor, no matter how selfless or selfish, has an agenda. It may be no agenda but that, itself, is an agenda. We, the ones who do not know, ought to know in order to make more informed choices for better or worse.

Monday, March 31, 2008

"Legal service Web site launched for Arab journalists" - International Journalists’ Network

A very positive move.

Citizen Huff - The New York Times

I suspect we will see many more stories like this one of people who make it happen combing quality content and service with good technology. Or is there another explanation?

"State s politics take leap online" - News & Observer

The more opportunity for questions and answers - and the chance to read them "live" or afterwards - the better!

It is especially helpful for the N&O to include the specifics of how this will "work" and to note that you can read it later if not able to watch it as it happens.

"Mercury News to be leaders on Internet, "pick up the pace", and integrate staff" - editorsweblog

This appears headed in the right direction at a venerable newspaper which now lacks a certain je ne sais quoi in terms of associating the newspaper with quality ownership. That's still important to me, and this is not the case, alas, here. It's not that it's bad; it's just not clear.

Anyway, the real test is the changes that are made here and what happens as a result. I worked with Mercury Center people at the very beginning of this, it surely would be nice to see the paper come back to its former glory in leading the way toward a new formula that guards what's good of the old and draws on the present and future to make it an even more successful undertaking for all affected - the entire community it serves.

"BitTorrent Revolutionizes File Sharing" - NPR

I am not at all convinced that the classic model of 90% of most people preferring to watch than to perform or contribute is really changing that much. Yes, this technology is important, but I think the premise is faulty or at least limited.

That's when it comes to "creating" something beyond a text message or an e-mail -- something intended to go to a wider audience.

As for the more limited communication to individuals, family, friends, associates of one sort or another, the sky is the limit.

That distinction between what we create and distribute to people whom we pick for the most part and stuff we take or find from others...that line is worth preserving and respecting.

We should not say that technology either reflects that it is no longer so or forcing the result that the line can no longer be respected.

It can be, should be and requires a lot of harder patient explanation to future generations in order to preserve this. It's worth the time.

"2 Irish Billionaires Clash Over Publisher’s Course" - The New York Times

I am an Irish citizen, and these sorts of stories interest me a lot. I do not know Mr. O'BRIEN but I am acquanted with father and son O'REILLY.

This sounds as though Ireland is an island separated from the rest of the world by water and mentality. Some of that, of course, is true.

But one has to wonder in terms of share value whether a newspaper company like Independent News & Media can really make a go of it for the medium term. I think the only reason that newspapers outside the US, in some number of cases, seem to be doing better than those in the US is that the digital stars have simply lined up in a different fashion as part of the transition.

In the end, we will all be operating in a digital world, with some paper supplements. A company that now relies primarily on paper has got to rework itself and its relationships with the people who, together, pay the bill - those who advertiser and those who consume advertising and pay for services, including news.

I see no indication that Independent News has organized itself and its ties to customers in such a way as to get out ahead of what is sweeping so many newspapers off the media road.

"Obama's talking to all of us" - Sandusky Register

I support Barack OBAMA for President for many reasons.

This is a wonderful short piece from Ohio not necessarily supporting OBAMA but urging all of us to read in full his speech on race. One should read in full Hillary CLINTON's speeches and papers as well. And those of John McCAIN. All are available on their respective websites; you are free to use them without registering in any way.

What's so refreshing about this piece is the simple admonition - go read the full text and in a world where there is only a millisecond of reasons not to do so, do it right now. Don't wait. This speech; other speeches. Other candidates. Do your work as a citizen and/or a voter. Even if you are neither, help the rest of us make the right decision!

As I wrote above, I support OBAMA because I think he is the best of the three. But I am not an ideologue and I will continue to listen carefully to what the other two say, and read as much as I choose to make time to do.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

A home for Fiesta™ Collectors

Amazing sign of our digital times that this ever existed and the fact that it disappeared as quickly as it came! I am not a Fiesta collector, by the way! | Tired of sloppy consumer service? Log on

Friday, March 28, 2008

Belarus: Journalists’ Homes Raided - New York Times

There has tended to be an assumption that US reporters, especially US citizens, carry the First Amendment with them as an endorsement to their passports. This never was the case and certainly is not today. Ditto for any US citizen abroad. In the case of Belarus or any other country, each person enjoys only the rights and privileges afforded and respected by the country where you are. Always assume the least protection, and always prepare yourself for the worst case scenario such as your hotel room or other dwelling being ransacked without warning by the local police. You're not in Kansas.

Thursday, March 27, 2008 | USDA s nutrition tool fails

It's always disappointing to see the failure of something that still has so much potential to help people eat better as the distance between them and their online lives grows so much smaller.

Finding Political News Online, the Young Pass It On - New York Times

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Katharine Q. Seelye - On Line - Election 2008 - Politics - New York Times

There is no doubt in my mind but that we will all be voting on the web for the President and other electec officials one day. What's so fascinating about this is the resiliency of concern over some areas of technological advancement. We are prepared to accept more mistakes, I would argue, when the mistakes are not embedded in a machine but rather in plane view, rather than in a place where none of us non-techies can penetrate. Oversight of this process is essential, and we should move more intelligently toward this goal of online voting.

Friday, March 21, 2008

"Obama France"

I was curious to know whether there are any organized groups of French people - and others in France - supporting OBAMA. This blog was the closest thing that I could find. Some quite interesting observations by whoever is doing this - one "cpachai" according to the profile associated with the blog. Why are so many people like this so reluctant to say who they really are?

In any case, it's a site worth a look.....

"Three New York Moguls in Talks to Buy Newsday" - The New York Times

This is another extraordinary sign of the times. We will look back on this period, I think, as one during which newspaper publishing became a much more personal as opposed to corporate undertaking. Owner-publishers will emerge from odd places and both First Amendment principles and our political system are bound to be affected by how this plays forward.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Send an Email - United States Representative Steve King

This is the Congressman who reportedly said that terrorists would dance in the streets if Barack OBAMA is elected President.

I wanted to ask him if he really said that.

But he has this set up - as do too many Representatives - to preclude any non-constituent from communicating with him.

It is perfectly appropriate for his constituents to have a preferred route of access, but to preclude the rest of us - unless we print and mail a letter or make a phone call - reflects a weakness unbecoming of a Member of the House of Representatives. In more colloquial terms, only wimps behave this way, and therefore this guy must be a wimp, I conclude.

Of course, he is free to correct the record here. I let anyone offer a comment and post all who write clearly regardless of whether they agree or strongly disagree. I seem to recall something about how democracy hinges on such exchanges.

Well, it seems to be true according to this report from the Associated Press. How sad to think that the good people of Iowa actually elected this man.

He needs a tremendous amount of professional and, above all, spiritual guidance. I hope someone connected to him - family, friends or constituents will offer to fill that void.

Friday, March 07, 2008

"Police: UNC Student Killed With Handgun" - AP

For God's sake, let's get rid of handguns. They have no place in a civilzed society. Special interests be damned; if the majority feels that people other than law enforcement should not be able to own handguns, w3hy shouldn't the majority prevail? If it provokes a Second Amendment challenge, so be it. Not to try is cowardice.

Thursday, February 28, 2008 | Wake schools speaker policy faces review

I am embarrassed to live in the same state as do the people responsible for imposing such an obnoxious policy on speakers of any kind. It is repulsive to me and to First Amendment principles. The people responsible for it ought to be asked to leave office; they are not fit to serve in my estimation.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

"How Internet Censorship Works" - Howstuffworks

We all ought to understand this much better than most of us do....

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

"Web Site That Posts Leaked Material Ordered Shut" - The New York Times

This is a very troubling move by a lone federal judge. I hope that all parties involved will use it as a means to reaffirm the law that the US Government should virtually never ever be able to shut off speech whether it looks like a domain address or a lonely pamphleteer on the street corner.

A Realist Called Obama - New York Times

This sure captures my feelings about OBAMA and why I am supporting him. Roger COHEN speaks for me on this one, as he often does.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Candidate hypotheticals...

Why are we are we not seeing more creative, smart hypotheticals posed to CLINTON and OBAMA especially. These need not touch real people, places, circumstances. They can be imaginary problems in imaginary places, but we need to hear more about how each would tackle the same problem. These are best posed with the other candidate not hearing the response of the first. That's really the only way that we can improve our sense of how each would address problems. The hypotheticals could even be given to the candidates in advance an even made public. That all makes those exercises a lot closer to real life.....

Why not?
Here are the NC Democratic super delegates, according to the Washington Post:

Democratic National Committee DNC Affiliation Type
Democratic Governor
Michael F. Easley
U.S. House of Representatives
G.K. Butterfield
Bob Etheridge
Mike McIntyre
Brad Miller
David Price
Heath Shuler
Melvin Watt

State's Total Number of Super Delegates: 17"

and here is what the News & Observer (Raleigh) reports is the current state of commitment:

* Susan Burgess, Charlotte, member of the Democratic National Committee
* U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield of Wilson
* Everett Ward, Raleigh, member of the Democratic National Committee
* Dannie Montgomery, Anson County, member of the Democratic National Committee
Remaining 13 superdelegates, including Gov. Mike Easley and U.S. Reps. David Price of Chapel Hill, Brad Miller of Raleigh and Bob Etheridge of Lillington. "

Thursday, February 07, 2008

"Encrypted Laptop Poses Legal Dilemma" - The New York Times

What a fascinating legal issue this is!

"Madison daily Capital Times switching to free weekly paper" - The Business Journal of Milwaukee

Newspapers must work harder than ever to get good content and services delivered to people who want what they have to offer. Some will pay for some things, but it looks less and less likely that a sufficient number will want to pay for the current newspaper "package" to keep the model alive for much longer. It does not have to end this way but I fear it will.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

La famille kényane de Barack Obama se plaint de l'afflux de journalistes

Barack OBAMA's Kenyan family is geting interviewed a lot by reporters. New dean at UNR wants to improve journalism

A superb editor in a wonderful new role.

"In CBS Test, Mobile Ads Find Users" - Media News

This could be used for a great many "local" news stories as well. Pssst, the police just responded to a robbery around the corner from where you are standing......

NBC17, Breaking News, Local News, Weather, NBC17, Raleigh Durham Cary Chapel Hill - NBC 17

It's surprising, to say the least, to see how hard it is for media managers - and others - to understand how the market moves between and among various media.

For example, there was a big pitch today on the local NBC station - WNCN - about how the manager wants to hear from viewers. Send me an e-mail and I promise you a response, he said.

I thought I would check this out on the station's website to learn more about what they were doing with the comments received from viewers.

There is not a single mention of this e-mail address or the on-air request for comment on the website.

Is the relationship between the television and the internet media that hard to understand?

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

"The Platform: Reading Newspapers on the Kindle"

This is pretty interesting. I have not tried the device yet, but, you know, we have spent a couple of decades thinking and arguing about print v. electronic and within "electronic" about PC v. Mac and then all the various styles, sizes and formats. In the end, people are finding that they can do a lot more with what they get electronically but it is not the same experience as reading on paper. Like so many of these debates, what seems most suprising is that it is taking so long for technology and the marketplace to work this out. Is it enough simply to say that you can get The New York Times a hundred different ways and therefore we are all content simply to make our choice. I don't think the future of that institution - The Times - rests very well on that foundation and that may explain why the whole process seems so unstable.

Monday, February 04, 2008

NPR: Twelve, Betting on a Dozen Books Each Year | Panel pushes ambitious transit plan

It sure would be nice to think that Chapel Hill could have a rail connection to all of its neighbors, including Hillsborough...but probably not south to Pittsboro, but why not?

'Ban restaurants from serving obese people' - Telegraph

This is a bill in Mississippi!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Debate thoughts

Why was it that The New York Times story about President CLINTON and Khazakstan did not arise?
Would it not be better to start posing meaningful hypothetical problems and situations to the candidates rather than to continue to parse the past? Wouldn't that be more consistent with OBAMA's focus on the future?

Microsoft Bids $44.6 Billion for Yahoo - New York Times

Many years ago, newspapers and Microsoft saw themselves as two of the biggest competitors in the future of electronic communication. So it was and so it seems, once again, to be.....

Monday, January 28, 2008

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Le : Incertitude sur les places boursières européennes après la chute des marchés asiatiques

At least Le Monde has created one page which it is updating fairly regularly with news from around the world relating to stock markets. Why are not other news organizations doing this?

Keeping posted...

Perhaps 15, no, maybe 20 years ago I was trying to use a new service at the time - I don't recall the name, but it was linked in some way to the early Compuserve. The idea in any case was to allow online access - prior to the web - to more up to date wire service and newspaper stories. What I wanted to follow as I remember it was the latest news on a hurricane or some such subject. All I got was time worn stories that failed to give me the "here and now".

So, too, I have found is the case even today.

It is astounding to see global stock markets is such astounding flux at 5:30 AM Eastern Standard Time today and to have so few news organizations, or purported "news" organization like Google News bringing this news to us. The New York Times has done the best job, but there seems to be nothing between New York Times-filed stories.

Why have we evolved so little over two decades?