aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Thursday, March 23, 2006
My response to the “TV is going to be TV” commenters
The comments on my ”TV is going to be TV, delivered like TV, for a very long time” post - itself quoting Mark Cuban and Susan Crawford and calling for greater government involvement in Internet regulation - are unanimous in their belief that government can’t. I have to wonder, would they then agree with my further belief that we are headed for a benign corporate state? I’m not fearing that. They likely would.
But still they can’t imagine that government could do a good job of promoting an open and free Internet. Funny, then, to realize that it was our government that funded and developed the open and free Internet - and yes, Al Gore played a big role in helping that along.
I acknowledge that after government - either directly or through university research funding - gets it started, it is a corporate assessment of profitability that determines which of any emerging technologies will be developed for the consumer market.
But I think the Internet handoff was noteworthy for the ease with which it occurred. Not a peep from anyone, not even from the cyberspace technorati who heralded the Internet as the end of for-profit communication by arguing that this technology allows individuals to bypass the corporate sector and communicate directly with each other.
Gay marriage doesn’t lead to polygamy
Krauthammer finds the gay/poly divergence perplexing. “Polygamy was sanctioned, indeed common” for ages, he observes. “What is historically odd is that as gay marriage is gaining acceptance, the resistance to polygamy is much more powerful.” But when you factor in jealousy, the oddity disappears. Women shared husbands because they had to. The alternative was poverty. As women gained power, they began to choose what they really wanted. And what they really wanted was the same fidelity that men expected from them.
Gays who seek to marry want the same thing. They’re not looking for the right to sleep around. They already have that. It’s called dating. A friend once explained to me why gay men have sex on the first date: Nobody says no. Your partner, being of the same sex, is as eager as you are to get it on. But he’s also as eager as you are to get it on with somebody else. And if you really like him, you don’t want that. You want him all to yourself. That’s why marriage, not polygamy, is in your nature, and in our future.
Support for Gay marriage is increasing
WASHINGTON - The public backlash over gay marriage has receded since a controversial decision by the Massachusetts Supreme Court in 2003 to legalize those marriages stirred strong opposition, says a poll released Wednesday.
Gay marriage remains a divisive issue, with 51 percent opposing it, the poll by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found. But almost two-thirds, 63 percent, opposed gay marriage in February 2004.
“Most Americans still oppose gay marriage, but the levels of opposition are down and the number of strong opponents are down,” said Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Research Center. “This has some implications for the midterm elections if this trend is maintained. There are gay marriage ballot initiatives in numerous states.”
Times Preview: Fukuyama in the Book Review
Watch for it this weekend:
In February 2004, Francis Fukuyama attended a neoconservative think-tank dinner in Washington and listened aghast as the featured speaker, the columnist Charles Krauthammer, attributed “a virtually unqualified success” to America’s efforts in Iraq, and the audience enthusiastically applauded. Fukuyama was aghast partly for the obvious reason, but partly for another reason, too, which, as he explains in the opening pages of his new book, “America at the Crossroads,” was entirely personal. In years gone by, Fukuyama would have felt cozily at home among those applauding neoconservatives. He and Krauthammer used to share many a political instinct. It was Krauthammer who wrote the ecstatic topmost blurb ("bold, lucid, scandalously brilliant") for the back jacket of Fukuyama’s masterpiece from 1992, “The End of History and the Last Man.”
But that was then.
In the meantime, check out his new journal, The American Interest.
The Times’ review notes that the name “slyly invokes the legendary neoconservative journals of past (The Public Interest) and present (The National Interest), just to keep readers guessing about his ultimate relation to neoconservative tradition.”
Hate in Savannah on St. Patrick’s Day?
I love Savannah, but I’d stay far away on St. Patrick’s Day. Then, that’s no different than staying away from New York’s Fifth Avenue on St. Patrick’s Day.
Turns out there was an alleged hate crime this year in Savannah. I applaud the police response:
Interim Police Chief Willie Lovett ordered an internal investigation Tuesday after a gay man said police did not help him when he was attacked the day after St. Patrick’s Day. [...]
“There seems to be an accusation the officer didn’t do what he should have done,” Lovett said. “I want to be assured and the public to be assured that any time an officer doesn’t handle anything properly, we’ll look into it.”
Lovett said he wants to find out which story is correct: the victim’s or the one outlined in the police report.
“Apparently there seems to be a lot of accusations that this agency is discriminating against gays and lesbians,” Lovett said. “That is not a stigma I want to attach to this department. That is simply not true.”
Georgia Equality disagrees:
“In three weeks, there have been three separate life-threatening hate biased attacks and the city has allowed the attackers to go free thereby giving them a calling card to spread their violence of hate and bigotry,” said Chuck Bowen, the organization’s executive director. [...]
“The Savannah Police Department sent a clear message this past Friday night-don’t expose your breasts or urinate in public or you’ll be arrested and hauled off to jail and the keys will be thrown away,” Bowen said. “But beat someone near death because they are different from you, and they’ll give you the keys to the city.”
I’m fine with calling for an investigation but I would tone down the rhetoric until there’s proof of something more than “Police were rude to me.”
Recently I redesigned my site. This time I did it myself. I said to a friend, “I’m still not satisfied with my color palette.”
He sent this, The Surprising Truth About Ugly Websites:
Ugliness has never looked better. I have spent the last few days examining a surprising trend in web design that has made ugly websites look absolutely irresistible. No, its not the bolded, 18 point Times New Roman font shouting at me as I access the page that has me excited, nor is it the harsh colors that have actually managed to make my eyes hurt and distort my vision. In fact, its not even that logo which is so pixelated from being processed, resized, saved, and edited so many times that it appears to be blurred to protect the identity of the company who owns the website that has me singing the praises of ugly websites. What is it?
That’s right - ugly websites are surprisingly effective in making money. As a person who puts business before technology, a profitable website is a website is an unbelievably attractive website to me.
His reasoning gets to the root of something that both clients and web developers must learn: People don’t look at websites, they use them…
South Park: “Super Adventure Club”
From Chef’s eulogy: “We shouldn’t be mad at Chef for leaving us, we should be mad at that fruity little club for scrambling his brains.”
If anyone’s aware of controversy as a marketing tool, it’s Matt & Trey. I’ll be interested to see the ratings of last night’s episode:
(AP) Isaac Hayes’ Chef character got a true “South Park” send-off Wednesday night _ seemingly killed off but mourned as a jolly old guy whose brains were scrambled by the “Super Adventure Club.”
The thinly disguised satire continued the show’s feud with Scientologists in its 10th season premiere on Comedy Central. [...]
Hayes didn’t participate in making Wednesday’s episode; the character’s lines appeared to be patched together through tapes of past dialogue.
To be continued…
SEE ALSO: Andrew Sullivan on The Mystery of Isaac Hayes, “Something doesn’t add up.” And my call for South Park to kiss-off Viacom. (Though I must say they’re doing a pretty good job of pissing off Viacom, which is almost just as good!)