A libertarian perspective on Obama’s first 40 hours in office

Radley Balko on Obama’s first 40 hours:

# Obama rescinded Bush’s 2001 executive order allowing former presidents, vice presidents, and their heirs to claim executive privilege in determining which of their records get released to the public. Even better, he’s requiring the signature of both his White House counsel and the attorney general before he can classify a document under executive privilege.
# Issued a memorandum to all executive agencies asking them to come up with a new plan for open government and complying with FOIA requests. He is also instructing three top officials, including the U.S. attorney general, to come up with a new policy on open government. The new policy would replace the existing policy, infamously set by a 2001 memo from John Ashcroft that instructed federal agencies to essentially to take every measure they can to refuse FOIA requests.
# Put a freeze on the salaries of top White House aides.
# Suspended the military trials at Gitmo, and is expected to issue an order closing Gitmo as soon as today.

Full Story: The Agitator


Looking to spur wiki adoption? Want to grow from 10 users to 100, or 1000? Applying patterns that help coordinate people’s efforts and guide the growth of content, and recognizing anti-patterns that might hinder growth – can give your wiki the greatest chance of success.

Wikipatterns.com is a toolbox of patterns & anti-patterns, and a guide to the stages of wiki adoption. It’s also a wiki, which means you can help build the information based on your experiences! Beyond this site, there are many other additional resources.


(via Appropedia’s Twitter)

Five ways Wikipedia beats newspapers

1. Wikipedia avoids weasel words. It attributes statements to their sources, rather than to “some people say”. Can you imagine a newspaper surviving five minutes with such a policy?
2. When somebody hoaxes Wikipedia, the article quickly gets investigated and deleted within three weeks (and yet this case is held up as an example of Wikipedia’s unreliability). When somebody hoaxes the mainstream media, they carry on credulously reprinting the press releases five years later.
3. Wikipedia has a policy against plagiarising newspapers. Judging from the amount of times I’ve blurted “hey — I wrote that!”, while reading The Metro on the tube*, the reverse policy doesn’t apply.
4. You can correct mistakes in Wikipedia. You cannot correct mistakes in the Daily Telegraph, even if you were the subject expert quoted in the item.
5. Wikipedia is not about to go bankrupt.

From: Cotch

(via Steven Walling)

Richardson’s Withdrawal Raises Questions About Severity of Federal Probe

Bill Richardson’s sudden departure from President-elect Barack Obama’s proposed Cabinet has raised questions about the severity of the federal investigation into possible “pay-to-play” schemes at the top levels of the New Mexico government.

Richardson, the New Mexico governor, told reporters Monday that the only reason he withdrew his nomination for commerce secretary was he was concerned that a federal investigation would last longer than he originally anticipated. The federal probe centers on CDR Financial Products, which won state contracts for $1.48 million.

The governor would not speak to the specifics or seriousness of potential allegations, but he insisted Obama’s team did not pressure him to withdraw his name.

“It was my idea to withdraw,” he said.

But the fact that Richardson, who has been publicly seeking to return to Washington since the beginning of the presidential campaign, would withdraw his name from the running just weeks before confirmation hearings struck New Mexico politicos as the sign of a potentially deepening investigation.

Full Story: Fox News

(via Dysnomia)

How to Make Barack Obama Keep His Promises

Of course, this could all turn out to be hype. Most of my friends have strong doubts that the “Change” Barack Obama represents means anything beyond being an effective ad slogan. My own view is more complex. Personally, I don’t see the next President as a token figurehead or a liberal messiah, but as a dedicated political realist. As Obama himself explains, “since the founding, the American political tradition has been reformist, not revolutionary.” He appears to be actutely conscious of the comprimises he makes and the games he’s playing, and he’s got a larger vision behind everything he’s doing.

Here’s the good news: if I’m wrong, I’ll find out very quickly. The online organizing and social networking that engineered Barack Obama’s rise to the White House wasn’t just an expensive tool, it was a culture. A culture of people who are motivated, informed and demanding, and a culture that will turn on Obama once they suspect they’ve been used.

In fact, we might watch Obama alienate his fan base before he even gets sworn in.

Full Story: HTML Times

See also:

Obama Haters: you’re missing the opportunity of a lifetime

Obama Haters redux

Unique Transparency Program Uncovers Problems with Voting Software

a California county uncovered a problem with its voting system software only because the county’s registrar of voters had decided to implement an innovative public auditing program. […]

Humboldt County uses paper ballots that are scanned by an optical-scan system made by Premier Election Solutions (formerly Diebold Election Systems). Under the Transparency Project, after the ballots are officially scanned and tabulated by the Premier system, they’re scanned a second time by a separate commercial scanner, not made by any voting machine company, so that the ballot images can then be posted on the internet for the public to examine and conduct independent recounts.

They use open source software and have documented their project for others who want to replicate it.

Full Story: Threat Level

© 2023 Technoccult

Theme by Anders NorénUp ↑