aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Thursday, September 15, 2005
Liberal comedian sues blogger
Garrison Keillor—a liberal comedian!—is threatening to sue MNspeak—some blog!—that uses a t-shirt to poke fun of his mega-gigantic media empire. You’d think we shot Guy Noir or something.
Man, this guy is getting old.
Fighting off the urge to tell everyone on the planet about the old guy’s folly, the first thing I decide to do is give him a second chance. I immediately call Keillor’s lawyer, and the brief conversation goes something like this:
Me: “Listen, you really don’t want to do this. I highly suggest you tell your client to revoke this cease and desist.”
Me: “First off, your client has no legal basis for this, and it’s clear you’re just trying to bully me. Secondly, this is going to make your client look extremely out of touch. I’ll even write the headline for you: ‘Liberal Comedian Sues Blogger.’ Do you really want that?”
Him: “Is that a threat, Mr. Sorgatz?”
Me: “Dear god, no. I’m trying to be nice about this. I’m just telling you to let this go. I’ve made no real money off this, and there are only a handful of t-shirts left. If you let it go, I’ll let it go. This is just going to blow up in your client’s face.”
Him: “I’ll consult with my client.”
The lawyer says Keillor still wishes to pursue his cease and desist:
So what now? I’ve temporarily honored the cease and desist, but haven’t decided how to proceed. Since there were only about 10 shirts left (and I had no plans on reprinting new ones), there’s no real economic reason to pursue this. And besides, let’s be clear about the scope of what we’re actually talking about: a fairly stupid t-shirt with four words on it. In an age of much bigger problems, is this really worth fighting for?
He’s looking for a pro bono lawyer. I hope he finds one. This is precisely how they bully us all.
Via Kos: “Keillor’s an idiot.”
And Sully: “What a jerk.”
When Lego executives recently discovered that adult fans of the iconic plastic bricks had hacked one of the company’s new development tools for digital designers, they did a surprising thing: They cheered.
Unlike executives at so many corporations, who would be loathe to let their customers anywhere near the inner workings of their software tools, the Lego honchos saw an opportunity to lean on the collective thinking of an Internet community to improve their own product while bolstering relations with committed customers.
All it took was being open-minded enough to see that their biggest fans weren’t trying to rip them off; they were trying to improve Lego’s products in a way that, just maybe, the company’s own designers hadn’t thought of.
Joe Gandelman says the court ruling that reciting the pledge is unconstitutional will further boost the confirmation chances of John Roberts and could even lead to a more conservative candidate for the second Supreme Court seat.
I agree with Joe that Michael Newdow, the atheist who brought the suit, “wants to impose his views on the whole society as much as social conservatives want to impose theirs.” For background Steve Benen, The Carpetbagger, points to a detailed article on the original lawsuit he wrote 3 years ago called “one nation, easily divisible?”
I’m reminded of a conversation I had with a local biology teacher last year:
A Brit who’s the son-in-law of the [military school’s] Commandant, he spoke of the problems teaching biology here. For example some students flat out refuse to even listen in class. He believes the problem is Constitutional and boiled it down to this: the lack of religious education in school. He believes religion should be taught in school. All religion. World religion. Christian, Muslim, Hindu, you name it.
I was inclined to agree with him then. The more I think about it the more I agree.