Links for March 9th

  • Richmond Times-Dispatch: 1,100 felons regain rights in McDonnell’s first year
    Color me surprised. I would happily have put down $50 saying that McDonnell wouldn't restore the civil rights to but maybe 10% as many felons as Gov. Tim Kaine Kaine did. He's on pace to match Kaine. This is still a terrible system—we're one of just two states in the nation that still give only the governor the power to restore rights.
  • PolitiFact Virginia: Virginia lottery claims all profits since 1999 have gone to education
    Turns out that this is basically true. I'd wondered.
  • Washington Post: In Utah, Sen. Hatch courts tea partyers one by one in quest for survival
    I'm not what you'd call a fan of Sen. Orrin Hatch, but it's depressing to see how low he's stopping to kowtow to the most extreme elements of his party. He's taking to swearing in his speeches because it makes the tea partiers happy. He's been consulting a muscle car builder on his votes several times each day, apparently because he wants to make the guy feel special. He's having to apologize for his decades-long friendship with Sen. Ted Kennedy, because this bunch sees cooperation or even friendship with Democrats as failure. This article neatly summarizes everything that's wrong with politics. While claiming—weakly—to have (silently) opposed President Bush's policies, they're reproducing President Bush's scorched-earth politics.
  • Pinboard: Anatomy of a Crushing
    I have come to the conclusion that my future projects must include a revenue stream. It's swell to create a service for a community good, but without a revenue stream, that's committing to doing something forever because it once seemed like a good idea. That'd just dumb. The low-priced social bookmark service Pinboard (which I'm using to post this right now) has a great model that illustrates how a revenue stream can make a service significantly better without significantly reducing the accessibility of it. Also, I just love every detail here about how Pinboard is designed and how it was created, because it's precisely how I develop, for better or for worse. I thought I was the only one!

Published by Waldo Jaquith

Waldo Jaquith (JAKE-with) is an open government technologist who lives near Char­lottes­­ville, VA, USA. more »

7 replies on “Links for March 9th”

  1. Bob McDonnell appears to believe in the possibility of redemption and personal growth. So many politicians of both stripes are so deathly afraid of political backlash that they reflexively deny requests for pardons or executive clemency.

    When Chuck Robb took over as Governor in 1982, he instructed the staff in charge of such things to make damn sure that he didn’t grant more clemency requests than his predecessor John Dalton had. And he didn’t.

  2. Both McDonnell and Kaine hold strong, genuine Christian beliefs. A big part of that is recognizing that the most important word in the Lord’s Prayer is the second “as.”

    (Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.)

  3. I personally would like to see Senator Hatch sing “I dreamed a dream.” Probably wouldn’t be as good as Glee, but compelling none the less.

  4. When the lottery said it would give all profits to schools, that was a green light all over the country for legislators to say “Gosh, we don’t have to give them as much now.”

    Education is severely underfunded at every level, and we will pay for it for generations one way or another.

  5. Considering we have two Democratic U.S. Senators (at least for the time being) Gov. McDonnell could have decided to take the safe route and beat his chest about how tough he is on convicted felons. I’m glad he hasn’t gone that route.

    Which brings us to Sen. Hatch. I’m not precisely sure what it’s called when an elected Representative of the United States government genuflects before a political activist threatening to carpet-bomb him, but the technical term used to describe that same thing when a foreign national makes such a threat is “surrender.”

  6. As a conservative who thinks we need to drastically reform our criminal justice system, I applaud Governor McDonnell and hope he can keep it up.

  7. Well said Mark. The lottery was never meant to be used to fund education in the way it is being used. It was meant to supplement the funding being given by the state. There’s no going back on that until we have politicians in the legislature and the Governor’s mansion that actually care about public education.

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