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"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG


CNN Poll: Most People Are Idiots

by Ken Newquist / October 26, 2006

Ok, that wasn't the real headline, but it should be, since "Poll: Most feel civil liberties not harmed by war on terror" really doesn't do enough to drive home the point. The poll says 39 percent feel the government has gone too far in restricting civil liberties (which is a nice block of potential votes) but "34 percent said they believe the administration has been about right on the restrictions" and most frustratingly, 25% of the sheeple surveyed responded that "the administration has not gone far enough."

Reuters: US Congress Launches Probe into Virtual Economies

by Ken Newquist / October 18, 2006

You've got an amazing island resort in Second Life. The entire virtual universe is clamoring to get in, you've got a buzz like no other, and you're raking in thousands of linden dollars a month. Meanwhile, in World of Warcraft you've got a nice little auction routine going, and have managed to accumulate quite a pile of gold.

Libertarian Democrats?

by Ken Newquist / October 11, 2006

In libertarian circles there's been more than a little talk about where to go after abandoning the Republican Party. Some will vote for the Libertarian Party of course, though many won't. Some won't vote at all, disgusted with all of the ballot options. Some will vote for Democrats not because they agree with their stated positions, but because they aren't Republicans, and by voting for the Dems they can punish the GOP for pulling the libertarian poles out of the party's big tent.

And then there are those considering the Democrats as an effective alternative party to the Republicans, one that might share enough common values to make it worth overlooking their overtly collective and big government tendancies (just as the Republican Party's now-dead limited government doctrine made it easier to leave with it religious wing).

Reason: Penn Statists

by Ken Newquist / October 10, 2006

Reason nicely sums up my choices in the Pennsylvania senate race. On the right, we have staunch anti-individualist and neocon statist Rick Santorum who's foresaken almost every principle of small government Republicanism in a mad rush for power and glory. On the left, we have Bob Casey Jr., son of the former governor, who's attack ads sound more like those of a Texas Republican going after illegal Central and South American aliens. This thinly-veiled xenophobia is unsettling, particularly from a Democrat (but hey, Democrats have shown they can play to whatever bizarre mutated monstrocity we're calling "the middle" these days). His message is mixed in with the more traditional big government, pro-union message that you'd expect from a Pennsylvania Democrat.

Warning: Political Blogging Ahead

by Ken Newquist / October 10, 2006

With the election season now in full force (I know this because I've started to receive phone calls from the myriad political groups and candidates) I'm going to spending more time blogging about politics, mostly in my home state of Pennsylvania, but occasionally on the national level as well. Politics and scifi don't often mesh, and I know many of the folks coming to Nuketown aren't here for that reason.

Fear not gentle readers -- the home page will not be turned into an endless stream of political diatribes. I intend to keep those posts confined to my personal Nuketown blog, with only the occasional scifi-related post percolating to the home page. Those of you who receive notifications will get updates about these posts, but even then, you shouldn't be expecting a blizzard of content. If you are interested in my political rantings, you can find them by going to the new "Politics" category.

“Hotel Minibar” Keys Open Diebold Voting Machines

by Ken Newquist / October 4, 2006

Now doesn't this just instill you with confidence in our new fangled voting system?. Kind of makes me long for the days of the hanging chad. Wired had it right a few years ago when they published a back page "relics of the future" shot that had a validated voting receipt indicating when, where and who you voted for. Any system without a paper trail is setting itself up for disaster; any system that lacks a paper trail and transparency in its operation (as is the case with Diebold) is looking at a voting apocalypse.