Thursday, January 29, 2009

Blagojevich

Rod R. Blagojevich is no longer governor, and can no longer hold public office in the state of Illinois. By a unanimous vote in the Illinois Legislature.

He'll probably be double-teaming with Geraldo Rivera on Fox news for a while.

Server problems at www.sjr.com?


This morning I glanced at the paper. Yes, an actual Illinois State Journal-Register newspaper (perhaps for not much longer) and saw a few things of which I was motivated comment. At first I got a couple of error messages just accessing the site. I thought I was having browser problems at first, but the site finally came up. I read the articles and then tried to log on to comment. Oops, my ID and password didn't work.

I wondered if it had anything to do with my comment about the city commerce regulations that were prohibitive to new businesses but not prohibitive to current businesses. I guess it might be just an error. I'll test it from a different computer.

The workaround, in case anyone is interested, is through www.digg.com. I have a Widgit from Digg here at my blog that shows the articles I dugg. I can comment on them at my Digg location. It's better than just posting them on my main blog because they stick around down below while I blog about other things.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Additional bans on new businesses.

A partial prohibition on new businesses that allows for the maintenance of an advantage by an existing business is illegal.

Laws affecting Liquor store drive-through windows or new payday loan stores, without equally affecting existing businesses of the same nature, is a violation of fairness in competition.

It creates a Command Market System and is unconstitutional. The laws must affect ALL existing and future businesses.

New term:___

What is it called when members in a geographic commercial area collude to prevent competition?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Cardinal Rules of Microsoft Access and Excel

I had a temp job once going around taking inventory. I was given a laptop with Microsoft Excel on it with an inventory list. I was to enter the numbers in the cells. I had a difficult time with it because the person, the moron who made up the spreadsheet broke every single one of the following Cardinal Rules.


I. If it can be subdivided it must be subdivided.
a. The more you subdivide information into separate columns, the more
versatile your database will be in the future when you want to develop
charts for presentations, interactive maps, and other codependent
documents like mail merge or XML.


II. Be specific when using column headers.
a. Make sure you can wake up the next morning and know exactly what
should go in a column by its header description. If need be, you can use
the “Insert Comment” to further describe the content requirements.


III. Never a full name in one cell.
a. A first middle and last name are three different things. Use three different
columns.


IV. Never first names first.
a. Why always start with last names first? I’m not sure. The reasoning might
be cultural in origin, but it is the official standard of phone books,
libraries, and the government.


V. If you must use nicknames, give them a separate column.
a. If you substitute someone’s formal first name with a nickname, later you
will never find Rick no matter how hard you search for Richard or Dick.


VI. Dividing punctuation requires dividing columns.
a. If you have a comma or semicolon in several cells, you’re in trouble. If
you know you will need three or more items as part of a record, for
example, the identity of multiple printers a person must access, then set a
limit of five and create five columns.


VII. Special requirements need special paperwork.
a. Create an external document reference column.

VIII. Three dimensions require three columns.

IX. Pick one way to describe something and stick with it.

X. Pick one column order and stick with it.

XI. Keep comments to the far right.
a. Columns labeled “Comments,” or “Reason,” are regularly ignored.

XII. Use complete dates.
a. Be sure to include the year, month, and day every time you use a date.

XIII. Keep time out of the date column.
a. The time and date format in Excel is too long to effectively sort and will
cause problems down the road.


XIV. Get all the names before you start.
a. Make sure you know exactly what you need before you start. If rows need
to be added in the process of data collection, you will add hours to the
process of reconciling the remote database with the central database.


XV. Keep a column for sequential record numbers
a. If you want to import your Excel spreadsheet into an Access database, you
will need a “Key” field. Each record should have a record number field
because you won’t be able to import the row number from Excel as your
key field in Access.


XVI. There will always be more rules, write them down as you discover them.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Passive Marginalization

Passive marginalization occurs when an individual or group of people are referenced by their negative experiences more frequently than their positive attributes.

Negative Attributes

Negative attributes are generally any physical attribute that cannot be changed that is different from that of the currently dominant group, or any behavioral attribute that is assumed to be chosen and reinforced that is not consonant with the dominant group.

Negative attributes are entirely subjective and variably meaningful based on the level of exposure and / or education within the dominant group.

The salience or value of negative attributes can be seen as inversely proportional to the education level of people in the dominant group.

Secondary Negative Attributes

Secondary negative attributes are historical references to the dominant group’s previous poor treatment of the minority group.

Projection of progress

Projection of progress occurs when the progress of a dominant group’s behavior toward a minority group is attributed directly to the minority group as its own progress, as if the minority group needed to improve itself. Commonly stated by “They have come along way” rather than “we have evolved to understand and accept them.”

Emotions that marginalize

Emotions such as guilt and fear of retribution act as behavior modifiers effective toward continued isolationism away from members of the minority group. This isolationism occurs on every level and still affects the quality of life for minority groups.

Passive marginalization occurs when a minority group is isolated and identified too frequently by secondary negative attributes and projection of progress.

Example: Chris Matthews on MSNBC covering the inauguration of Barack Obama.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Distraught Conservatives Retreating into the Realm of Fantasy


Republican Leader John Boehner complained last night on PBS's News Hour about the bailout.

Really? Really? After six years of majority control, do Republicans have a right to complain about what has to be done to clean up their mess?
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Out deadline set. Maybe?


Our expectations have been raised and the goal has been set. Pat Quinn is waiting in the wings. What will become of the swearing in ceremony?

Grief.


I went to the screening of The Visitor at Capital City Bar and Grill. When I arrived there were barely any chairs left and all the tables were occupied. I finally sat down at the end of the bar against the wall facing the screen.

I got a really bad vibe that I broke up someone's party (Sorry about that) I didn't see anyone I knew anyway and it looked like everyone who was there was with everyone else with which they wanted to hang out, so I left. I hope you had a wonderful time.

Still considering moving to Springfield?

Monday, January 12, 2009

Here's the picture I promised.


After all the attention Springfield and Illinois received over Governor Blagojevich, bloggers are beginning to wonder if it was all a deliberate distraction from other issues like the billions spent on the bank bailout. (See HuffingtonPost.com)

For making decisions in the voting booth, the public relied on the old media for far too long. First when Bush was elected, then the illegal war in Iraq, then Bush getting reelected again, then Blagojevich getting elected and reelected.

Yeah, everyone knows. This message has been spouted enough. The public that voted for Obama has redeemed itself, but the public that voted for Aaron Schock has not. Wasn't suggesting the selling of nukes to Taiwan enough of a red flag?

I'm thinking seriously about using the picture above as an avatar. It wouldn't make much of a difference.

Google Search Engine suddenly LAME!


Do you want to find out how lame Google's search engine has become?
Just compare the search results between Google and Yahoo! by search for images of Orcs from The Lord of the Rings.

Google is...
-------------------------

After posting the above blog, I went back and did another search and the search results suddenly improved. I don't know what the problem was, but it was very disturbing to find only pictures of babies and normal humans making stupid faces, while searching for Orcs.

Why was I searching for orc images? Because the "journalists" (minions of the old gate-keeping news media that rolled over while the Bush administration pushed us into an illegal war in Iraq) are gathering in St. Petersburg Florida for a symposium to determine their fate and to make plans for preventing independent bloggers from getting Press passes to anywhere.

I want to make a funny composite of an orc at a computer wearing a Fedora with "Press" card in the hat band.

Too many people might associate it with Matt Drudge (what ever happened to him anyway?) of the Drudge Report.

I'm going to give it a shot anyway and post it shortly. It will take a few hours so be patient.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Clandestine Communication: The necessary evil of up-and-coming media outlets.

I like Craig’s List. I go there just to read the Rants and Raves section. It’s often hilarious but there are too often messages that complain about “flagging.”

Flagging occurs when you post a free classified ad on CraigsList.com and later, someone else finds your ad not to their liking so they click on a link to notify Craigslist.com that your ad is somehow offensive.

Normally, for a post to be flagged, it must be extraordinarily offensive. Most people who browse Craigslist.com are hardened by offensive online material anyway so why a few words would be taken as offensive there is kind of surprising to me.

The conspiracy theory is that the competition with Craigslist.com is the local mass media, television, radio, newspapers, magazines, etc. But the entire Internet is competing with the local mass media anyway. The only difference is that Craigslist.com offers free classified ads.

In “Rants & Raves” on Craigslist.com, there aren’t many complaints about posts getting flagged, but it’s a juicy conspiracy theory so I thought I would look into it.

I did a quick search for the word “flag” in the “Rants & Raves” section and found only seven posts. Most of them were critics of those who complained about the flagging. All posts are automatically removed after thirty days, so seven in thirty days is not many.



-------------------------------
RE: who's flagging.... (Chatham)
Date: 2009-01-01, 6:16PM CST

Actually I think it could be the daily newspaper that is partially to blame for all the flagging. Heard they might have to claim bankruptcy and fold so I can see why they would not like CL.

* Location: Chatham
-------------------------------
RE;Whos flagging (United States)
Date: 2009-01-01, 5:29PM CST

The newspaper? That is the dumbest thing i have ever heard ,next you will say its the car lots and sears ,walmarts or even the goverment . goofy stupid.

* Location: United States
-------------------------------
Re: who's flagging ? (Spfld.)
Date: 2009-01-01, 3:46PM CST

One of the flaggers is your local daily newspaper and your weekly shopper. They do not want cl around cause you can advertise here for free and it is cutting into their business. I will never buy another newspaper again.

* Location: Spfld.
-------------------------------
Flagger (Local)
Date: 2008-12-12, 9:14AM CST

I highly doubt the local paper is sitting at there decks flagging everyones post does that really sound likely! It's probably Tom from myspace DUUHH!!!

* Location: Local
-------------------------------
Flaggers (CHI- Town)
Date: 2008-12-12, 8:40AM CST

I heard from my uncles, cousins, landscaper's dog walker that he knew a guy that took a tour of the capital once, and that guy swears it's Blago doing all the flagging. He's trying to take some of our focus off of him! Remember I got this info from the highest source so it must be true!

Someone NEEDS to flag all the websites pretending to be single women.

* Location: CHI- Town
-------------------------------
I figured it was the local news paper........... (Spfild.)
Date: 2008-12-11, 10:09PM CST

I kind of had a clue it was the local paper that was flagging on here to disrupt cl.

* Location: Spfild.
-------------------------------
The flaggers are the people at the local daily news paper (Spfld, Il.)
Date: 2008-12-11, 9:09PM CST

The folks at the only local daily newspaper in Springfield and also the oldest Shopper newspaper in Springfield are the ones who are flagging all the ads on here. They are losing money daily and will probably have to file for bankruptcy soon so they are trying to shut down the competition to save their asses. My cousin worked there and thats how I know who it is thats causing all the problems on here.

* Location: Spfld, Il.
-------------------------------



As rare an appearance as they make, these posts make sense for three reasons. First, it literally takes only a few seconds to search for posts and then flag them to be removed, even just for the fun of it. Second, the classified ad posts do represent a considerable loss of revenue for the old mass media. Finally, the ads that are flagged are nothing more than small items for sale. The ads have nothing offensive in them.

Logically, the culprit is someone with a vested interest in undermining the public’s attempt to sell things on a forum that doesn’t charge anything.

Here’s where the conspiracy will get really juicy.

Let’s say that you’re not just a citizen selling a few items in the attic, but you are an actual business. You decide that you want to attract young Craigslist hipsters (I say that with all due respect). So you advertise on Craigslist. What would happen if you were once a client of the newspaper?

Would you stop getting calls from the newspaper? Would you suddenly find yourself or your business the subject of vicious rumors?

I worked with ad sales people for nearly a decade; many of them were pigeon-holed into selling ads for one client rather than acting as independent ad consultants. Being cornered like that can make someone vindictive and conniving. One need only Google the words “pharmaceutical accusations” to get a good picture.

Craigslist.com may not be the only target of vindictiveness. I discovered recently that the Sangamon Star (http://www.sangstar.com) is back in print. While on the forum of a local radio talk-show host I posted the news about it and was later notified that I was a spammer. A Spammer is someone who repeatedly posts ads for work-at-homers or counterfeit drugs. I post my opinions.

A little research would have told the moderator that the Sangamon Star is an underdog, an up-and-coming independent pub that deserves a shot. Either the moderator was operating on a company directive, or didn’t like the idea of a message about another media outlet on his message board. MFB-MA-WTF!

So, medium and large businesses local or not, will probably not advertise on CraigsList.com, SangStar.com, or SPFLD.net for fear of reprisals. The old mega news outlets have reports and researchers capable of digging up all manner of dirt and scandal on their advertising clients, but they don’t report it because they are commonly referred to in journalism circles as “Golden Calves.” Untouchable because they are a source of income.

I never asked for any ads locally, they just show up on my Google Ad Sense which I am about ready to pull because the “click-through traffic” philosophy is proving itself to be totally bogus.

Up-and-coming Internet (new) media outlets and publications must rely on their friends for support. They may have day-job employers who are threatened by media outlets for having them as employees. Even bloggers may have gotten “laid off” not because of cutbacks, but because they regularly publish opinions that don’t mesh with the clients of their employers.

This is the taint on freedom of speech. The truth will set you free alright; it will put you down on the street with your hat in your hand.

One solution is a coded post subscription. You subscribe to coded posts you can only read by deciphering them with a key you receive in your email.

Another solution is to just let the chips fall where they may and gather in a force to defend your right to free speech.