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Pay no attention to the people behind the curtain

Monday, February 28, 2005

Links, etc.

The sidebar is 90% done. I want some pictures, and there are a couple of blogs I want to link yet.

Plus, imageshack seems to be mucking with the pictures I already have. They show up sometimes, not others. Grr.

Mostly, I wanted to say that your blog's disappearance from my blogroll is not necessarily personal. I use my sidebar as a reading guide, so the blogs I link are the blogs I read. It's that simple. (If your feelings are really hurt, lemme know and I'll put you back.)

Let's start with Herb Kohl

Kohl is up for re-election in 2006, and while I like him okay, he could do much better for us. Here's what I wrote him today:
Please Vote Against Bankruptcy Bill
I know you voted the current bankruptcy "reform" bill out of committtee last week, but I urge you now to vote against it.

I would like to direct you to this story:

In it, the New Republic notes, "Under the current system, bankruptcy courts have broad discretion to decide who can file for Chapter 7, which allows debtors to erase their obligations after forfeiting a state-determined percentage of their remaining assets, and Chapter 13, which requires strict repayment according to court-ordered schedules. Judges base their decisions as much on why the debt was accrued as on income; this way people who come into debt through no fault of their own can get a fresh start, while a judge can decide that a careless gambler must pay what he owes. But the new bill would replace judicial discretion with a means test on household income--those above a certain level would be forced to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy--dismantling the system's ability to discriminate among worthy and unworthy debtors.

Credit card companies insist that most filers are merely credit addicts who have spent beyond their means and want to stiff the industry with the bill. [. . .] But a recent Harvard study shows that roughly half of all filers for Chapter 7 do so in the wake of major medical expenses. Moreover, Chapter 7 bankruptcy is hardly a get-out-of-jail-free card--it leaves a prolonged stain on one's credit rating and imposes tough financial sanctions. The credit card companies, by contrast, don't seem to be hurt by the filings much at all. According to Harvard Law School bankruptcy expert Elizabeth Warren, since 1997, 'Bankruptcy filings have increased 17 percent, while credit card profits have increased 163 percent.' "


This bill is symptomatic of what Republicans everywhere are doing (we see a lot of it at the state level here in Wisconsin, too): They want to treat a symptom, not a cause. And in doing so, they are serving their investment-class masters rather than the best interests of everyday Americans.

Thank you.
Write your own letter to Herb Kohl here.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Fingers Crossed

Another quick repair from Apple and, Jobs willing, I will have my iBook warming my lap tonight.

UPDATE: I'm at the Apple Store. It's looking good. We just may have real bloggage again starting Monday.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

What's Missing?

If you guessed "Jay's iBook," you'd be right!

I got a call from Scott over to the Apple Store this morning telling me that apparently, the Depot people replaced the logic board and not the hard drive, so that when they booted it up last night it failed miserably.

But since this is a family blog, I won't tell you how I really feel.

Friday, February 18, 2005

An Update, A Preview

So my iBook will be back in my hot little hands Saturday afternoon. Actually, it got to the Apple Store sometime Thursday morning--and considering that I dropped it off Monday night and it didn't ship to the Depot until Tuesday morning, that's fast.

So today I want to give you a a preview of what the remade f's r&r will be all about. Mostly, it has to do with trying to keep a regular schedule:

Monday: My Music Moday--I will take the time to talk about something related to my music. I will try to get you all mp3s if you want them, as well as talk about process, lyrics, and such. (By the way, if anyone knows someone willing to host downloadable mp3s, you should let me know.)
Tuesday: Teaching Tuesday--I glimpse into what I'm beating into those young minds: literature, grammar, writing.
Wednesday: Wisconsin Wednesday--I will try to focus on local stuff at least once a week. That's not to say I will never write about Wisconsin other times; it's just that Wednesday is alliterative.
Thursday: Thursday Three--Three posts from around the net that you maybe haven't read, but should have.
Friday: Friday Random Ten (Annotated)--You know the drill: Set your iPod/ mp3 player/ iTunes/ whatever to random and list the first ten songs. I will annotate my list, with commentary, reminiscence, and recommendations. Obviously, I can't do this today without my iBook.
Weekend: Random stuff, greatest hits from the past or my other writing outlets, whatever.

So, come on back. I will try to have something this weekend (and I'm still re-arranging the sidebar links so there are fewer and they are easier to navigate). At any rate, there will be real postage here Monday. Promise.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Yellow plus Blue makes Green!

Or, go start reading Blue and Red, which is not really about color at all.

Bad News

While my hard drive is off being replaced (I am fully backed up this time!) I'm pushing back my re-launch. I will aim now for Saturday the 19th. Sorry.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Update update

The new template is basically done. I think I need to do a little tweaking of the sidebar's width. The content of the sidebar is still in flux; I hope to trim it to about half its current length. I'm still not officially "back" yet, though. Just working through the process.

UPDATE on the Update update: I fixed the sidebars. I have seen the site in Mac and Windows, Mozilla and IE and Safari. Anyone see anything that looks bad?

Friday, February 04, 2005

Oh

And for those of you in driving distance of Ft. Atkinson, I'm at the Cafe Carpe Friday, Feb. 11. Come on out and see the show. I'll buy you cake.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

I'll be back

Hiatus is almost over. I will be back--I promise--on Feb. 17, one year to the day after Howard Dean's loss here in the Wisconsin primary and the official death of what little political optimism I'd started to have.

In the meantime, keep reading me at LSF every Monday. I'm up for a Koufax, too, if you care to head over and vote. I will be rearranging and trimming my sidebar links, so click through while they're still there.

Your patience will be rewarded!