The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Good butt

I just got very good news for Parker: for the first time in his entire doggy life, he is free from all intestinal parasites. No more bad butt.

Economist profile of Lawrence Lessig

The Stanford law professor is focusing on corruption as a way of combating creeping copyrights:

Mr Lessig has concentrated for a decade on copyright law and its interaction with the internet. So he left some people feeling confused earlier this year when he announced a new focus for his campaigning efforts: tackling corruption. Not everyone understood that this change in academic and activist emphasis is more of a shift in strategy than in substance.

For years Mr Lessig has presented legal arguments against excessive copyright extensions. But he says lawmakers are so in thrall to big-media lobbyists that they do not even realise that counter-arguments to copyright extensions exist. Even though Britain's Gowers Review, published in 2005, argues against such extensions, and eminent economists such as the late Milton Friedman have declared the importance of copyright limits to be a “no brainer”, Mr Lessig says legislators are clueless about “an issue that any rational policymaker has no problem understanding.” Swayed by campaign contributions from vested interests—such as film studios, music companies and book publishers—America's Congress has lengthened copyright terms 11 times in the past four decades, he observes.

Weather-induced laziness or common sense?

At the moment, a stiff wind is blowing snow straight down Chicago Avenue. It's -2°C. Overnight 13 cm of snow covered the ground, and people are just now shoveling it off the sidewalks. Here's the forecast:

Temperature rising to near -1°C by noon, then falling to around -4°C during the remainder of the day. Blustery, with a north northeast wind between 32 and 40 km/h. Chance of precipitation is 90%. Total daytime snow accumulation of 5 to 10 cm possible.

Tonight: Mostly clear, with a low around -9°C. Northwest wind between 16 and 14 km/h.

The weather actually made the front page of the Chicago Tribune:

"It's still coming down—all the way to Ottawa," said National Weather Service meteorologist Bill Wilson.

It will also stay around for a while. Temperatures won't reach significantly above freezing before Saturday, he said.

The Illinois Department of Transportation warned motorists to take it easy—and if at all possible to take trains to work this morning.

So instead of my usual walk-Parker-to-daycare-bus-to-the-office routine, I drove. I think this was reasonable, even given the ten minutes it took to dig my car out this morning.

I feel guilty about it, but I'll get over it.