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Independence Day

Friday, July 04, 2008 by Dave Winer.

A picture named goldwater.gifIt's the day when we say we're not dependent on Great Britain. Permalink to this paragraph

Of course that part of the holiday long ago lost its meaning. But maybe the whole thing, maybe the concept of America has lost its meaning. Matthew Yglesias, a surprisingly young blogger with a lot of influence yesterday wondered if the US really had more integrity in 1974 when our outrage forced Richard Nixon from office. Not just Democratic outrage, but Republican outrage too. I was alive then, Yglesias says he was not, and I remember, as a college student, how remarkable it was. But it's sad if it's true that today's America cares less about its ideals than that one did, because that one didn't care enough to stop the outrage from happening, we only cared when it was too late.  Permalink to this paragraph

As we learn more about our current President and Vice-President, it's never been more clear that we sold ourselves out -- for nothing -- to a handful of people who are raping not only Iraq for its oil, but our own country's treasury and integrity. They say they're not raising taxes, instead the dollar keeps declining relative to a barrel of oil. In just one week the price of gas at the pump has gone up 10 percent at the local station where I took the picture last Sunday. 10 percent! This is an unbelievable tax that hits everyone equally, which is to say it hits people just barely making it the hardest. And it's going to effect the cost of everything as the increase ripples through the economy, the cost of food, clothing, medicine, keeping our houses warm. Permalink to this paragraph

Then comes the amazing story that we may be about to provoke a war with Iran so the oil industry can take Iran's oil, after taking Iraq's. How many more hundreds of thousands of people will die, how many millions will be displaced, and how much more of what's left of our leadership will be foreclosed so the oil and defense barons can make a few more euros (they're surely not taking their loot in dollars). Permalink to this paragraph

When we look for someone to blame, we should look in the mirror -- we did this to ourselves, first by electing Bush, and then amazingly, re-electing him. But it would feel much better if I believed we were about to start undoing the mess, but I've been walking around with an undercurrent of depression this week, and I haven't been able to pinpoint the source, yet, but I have an inkling it has something to do with the evaporating hope that we're about to turn the corner. We may have created an unprecedented mess in the 8 years of Bush, we may have wrecked our economy and reputation, but at least we're about to start heading in the right direction. It seems perhaps not. Permalink to this paragraph

A picture named asknot.jpgFrom gun control to abortion, to illegal wire-tapping and funneling government money to religious organizations, the man who sold us Change You Can Believe In, it's sad to say, appears not to have believed in it himself. To find out it was just a marketing slogan is too much to bear. It's so hard to accept that Ted and Caroline Kennedy stood up for him and said he represented the same hope as JFK, well, maybe we misunderstood what they meant. Or maybe it's time for them to take him aside and ask "What did you mean again?" Permalink to this paragraph

I'd like to get Aaron Brown back on the air. I'd like Keith Olbermann to be tougher. And if this is just a case of Obama getting comfortable in his new skin, with his new stature as presumptive nominee then I look forward to him re-finding himself, because we need leadership now more than we need a new president. A humbled Obama is worse than a proud McCain.  Permalink to this paragraph


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A picture named dave.jpgDave Winer, 53, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.

"The protoblogger." - NY Times.

"The father of modern-day content distribution." - PC World.

One of BusinessWeek's 25 Most Influential People on the Web.

"Helped popularize blogging, podcasting and RSS." - Time.

"The father of blogging and RSS." - BBC.

"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.

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