April 9, 2007

I slept in as long as I could this morning but I had to be logged in and working by eight in the morning. Oreo did not stay in bed at all. He has so much pent-up energy – he is totally ready to get back to daycare. He has had four days off so he is about to explode with puppy power.

I had such a busy morning that I didn’t even get a chance to leave the house until after noon! I ran over to Food for Life and grabbed a sandwich since it was already so late. I figure that I earned it. Then it was time to hop into the Pontiac G6 rental and head off to the office.

Today, or recently – I am too lazy to check – Scott Adams argues that the United States does not have a government. He is probably right. Scott also has a good essay on “Is Copyright Violation Stealing?” I have often said that you can tell a real musician (or artist, or writer, etc.) from a wanna-be based on their opinions over copyright. A real musician (or artist, or writer, etc.) wants to either get paid for what they do OR wants to know that what they did was for the common good and can choose to give away their work for free. In either case it is a drive to create more, good stuff. The Creative Commons has become popular because so many musicians, artists, writers, etc. WANT to give their stuff away but they don’t want to be seen as big evil companies that the revolutionaries can steal from! They want to be seen as being awesome people giving stuff away for the common good.

I read the book “Reading Lolita in Tehran” and in that book the author makes a really awesome point about fundamentalist Muslims living in Iran. She talks about how many Iranian women, wanting to show their dedication to their religion, used to chose to wear the burka because it was a statement of faith. Just by wearing the burka they were telling people that they were dedicated to what they believed in and it wasn’t just something that they did easily or, as we often say in the US, something that they do “on Sundays.” But once the extremist Islamic regime took over and forced all women to wear the full burka in public at all times that statement was stolen from those who valued it most. Instead of wearing the burka being a statement of faith to Allah it is now a statement of subservience to the state. It has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with politics and fear. Who was hurt more – the women who wear the burka who wish that they didn’t have to or the women who wear what they always wear but now wear it with shame instead of pride?

The point is that the choice is the critical factor. If you chose to give away what you write it might be because you think that it is so important that it is more important to let people read it than to make money off of it. Being able to make that choice is critical. If there is no motivation for a writer to write, an actor to act, a singer to sing, a dancer to dance, an artist to… art then who loses out? The artist or the observer?

I found out today that on Saturday cartoonist Johnny Hart – Broome County’s favourite son – died of a stroke while drawing.

I worked a little late, until about half past six, and then headed for home. I got home and Dominica and I ran right over to Food for Life for dinner. I got the Cuban tonight which I almost never get. It has been probably five months at least since I had one.

I spent the evening playing Dragon Quest VIII. I needed a break. I got about two hours in which is amazing for me – especially on a weeknight. Dominica watched some Dancing with the Stars (ABC is available online – no requirement for having cable or an antennae – they are really thinking clearly) and then watching me play DQ8 and did a little studying for her A+ test that she absolutely has to take in the next few weeks ready or not.

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