Archive for October, 2008

Be an informed voter

October 29th, 2008

As I believe most readers of this blog know, I am a trustee of Our big project this year is a national voter guide that we’ve put together with over 100 newspaper and TV partners.

But enough about me. What do you know about the local candidates that you are going to vote for? Get your own personalized voter guide by entering your address into this widget:

1. technology, 2. politics , ,

Crowdsourcing Watergate

October 29th, 2008

Today’s NY Times had a sobering article about the demise of old media. I’ve been a proponent of blogging and other citizen initiatives, but I think that the old media has a role that will be missed if newspapers exit stage left: holding powerful people accountable through direct access. Is the SecDef going to respond to bloggers directly? There really is something about the fact that public officials have formal and informal communication with certain reporters, and that these reporters have some independent standing.

As Lance Bennett said at a talk yesterday, “Can you really crowdsource Watergate?”

1. technology ,


October 19th, 2008

Sarah, meet Tina. Tina, meet Sarah. Enjoy!

(By the way, SNL has a good online video strategy. It was very easy to link to this video — and that makes me happy.)

2. politics , , ,

Viral Marketing

October 13th, 2008

This presentation by the founder of RockYou has (almost) everything you need to know about viral marketing. A tour de force if you want to understand this kind of stuff.

1. technology , ,

Another sign of the (financial) apocolypse

October 10th, 2008

McCain is calling for regulation changes to end mandatory sales of retirement funds at age 70 1/2. Why should people be forced to sell when the market is “hurting”? Ugh! Since when does McCain know how and when the market will recover? In fact, he’s stumbled on to part of the problem: retirees *need* to take out money from the market continuous to live on! That is at the heart of the current (and ongoing) financial crisis.

And ladies and gents, it is only going to get worse as more and more baby boomers approach retirement age. Demographics are destiny!

Uncategorized , ,

How to reform the system

October 1st, 2008

So, my last two posts have argued (1) that we are faced with a deeper crisis than even the media have lead us to believe and (2) that there is a better alternative to the proposed bailout (and both the bailout and my plan are superior to doing nothing). Now, I want to turn to reform. How can we avoid making the same mistakes again in the future?

In a discussion I launched on e-thepeople, someone referred me to the “genesis plan.” In it, the plan proposes changes regulatory changes to limit/end off balance sheet vehicles, to reform credit derivatives and to re-impose limits on leverage for financial institutions. I find the links between the causes and effects to be well-argued, so I think his proposal deserves serious consideration.

As a long-term regulatory reform package, I think it dovetails nicely with my short-term plan to encourage a quick recovery from the current asset bubble we are in.

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