aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Sunday, June 11, 2006
National Health Care is not socialist
Kevin Drum, back from vacation, proposes a retort to the assertion that national healthcare is “socialist”:
“Socialist" is a scare word conservatives use when they’ve run out of serious arguments. But national healthcare isn’t socialism any more than Medicare is. It’s just a practical and efficient way of providing medical treatment for everyone in the country, the same way that interstate highways are a practical and efficient way of providing roads for everyone in the country.
The facts are simple: A well-designed national healthcare plan gives you greater choice of doctors, it’s less expensive than private insurance, it helps rein in spiraling costs, it keeps you covered even if you temporarily lose your job or have a preexisting condition, it helps out small companies that can’t afford to provide health coverage for their employees, it helps out big companies like GM and Ford that are nearly bankrupt because they do provide health coverage, and it covers everyone all the time.
And best of all, it gets rid of the bureaucratic hodgepodge we have now: Medicare for the old, employer coverage for people who work for big companies, 50 different versions of Medicaid for the poor, emergency rooms for the destitute, and no coverage at all for people who are unlucky enough to work for Wal-Mart. It’s an expensive mess that drives doctors nuts and provides most of us with mediocre care.
I have to memorize that.
Anti-iTunes DRM demonstrations
There were anti-iTunes DRM demonstrations in eight cities yesterday (alas, Atlanta was not among them). Don’t bother to look for mainstream media coverage, but here’s video of the San Fran demo. Here are photos on Flickr. And here Cory explains what it’s all about:
iTunes DRM may seem pretty innocuous at first, but every time you invest in an iTunes Store song, you make it more expensive to switch to an Apple competitor’s product at any time in the future. You didn’t have to abandon your CDs to switch to MP3s (in fact, the more CDs you owned, the better your MP3 experience was, since you could rip those CDs to seed your MP3 collection), but if you want to go from Apple’s iTunes to a competing device, ever, you have to be prepared to abandon your whole investment.
Add to that Apple’s willingness to remove features from iTunes Store songs in the name of “updating,” the absence of any way to give away, sell or loan your iTunes Store songs, and Apple’s use of blacklists and legal threats to prevent people from adding functionality to the iPod and iTunes and buying an iTunes song starts to seem like a worse and worse deal (especially since many artists report that they’re seeing $0.07 or less from the sale of their music on the iTunes Store, so all your money is doing is lining the pockets of the same recording companies that are busily suing grannies, little kids and everyone else they can get their hands on).
Not your father’s razor commercial
A friend sent the link today with the subject line, “Excellent for Father’s Day, I hope you enjoy.” I did. It’s everything good advertising should be.
RAZOR’S EDGY—Aimed squarely at the Maxim demographic—that is, guys in their early 20’s who still wear baseball caps to parties—a new video Web spot from Philips Norelco shows just how much further corporate marketers are willing to go online than they are on TV… The spokesman never says a dirty word out loud, but as he describes where the Bodygroom can be used, his voice is bleeped, and images of carrots and peaches appear.
If Tribal DDB’s Norelco Shave Everywhere site wasn’t tremendously “viral,” what a
ing letdown it would have been. The product itself seems to be custom-made for legions of -conscious men, while the site reaches out and grabs the of whomever the sheer mention of s elicits a chuckle. I received a link to the site from no fewer than five people within a week of its launch, and I personally know two people that purchased the product as a result. The fact that people know about this product without any (as-of-yet) mainstream advertising is a testament to the campaign-- and the (who knew?) need for a product like this in the marketplace. One of my favorite things about the site is that they could have stopped with a video introduction to the product, but no-- they filled the site with things like music videos, taking the jokes too far (in a good way), creating even more viral potential. Rumor has it, even MTV requested to air the music vid