Tag Archives: internet

What Would Steven Think?

It has been nearly five months since Steven tragically left us. During these past few months, I have thought of our friend often, as I am sure that all of you have, also. I only had the privilege of meeting  Steven once, but we had a lively friendship on the blogs. There were times that we didn’t agree, but for the most part, we shared similar philosophies.

Steven Davis was quite the unique individual, a mixture of unapologetic liberal, dedicated professional and (semi) frustrated musician. Above all, Steven was a doting father and good friend. He also did not suffer fools gladly, particularly if they were spouting the latest GOP talking points or Limbaughesque rhetoric.

As I write and comment on Pop Blog, I frequently reflect on what Steven would be thinking. (Or is thinking, if that is your mindset.) Since he died, the prospects for progressives and liberals have dimmed considerably, to the point that it is likely that the House will flip to the GOP and the Senate will be narrowly divided in favor of the Democrats.

What would Steven think about the likes of Sharron Angle? Rand Paul? Christine O’Donnell? What about the Republican-owned Tea Party that refuses to go away, despite the dismal opinion that most moderates hold of them? I wonder what he would think of House Minority Leader John Boehner’s assertion that the GOP will cut taxes and reduce spending, all without running up a deficit.

Like many of you, it still seems so strange to me that Steven is gone. I miss his input and his wit, not to mention his plain-speaking manner of addressing an issue. I miss cussin’ and discussin’ music and various artists with him. I miss his self-depreciating  wit and quiet manner.

I miss Steven. I am sure that I am not the only one.



(Thread photo by the author.)


William Stephenson Clark

12 Comments

Filed under This humble little blog...

What am I going to write about?

“I read the news today oh boy
About a lucky man who made the grade
And though the news was rather sad
Well I just had to laugh”

“A Day in the Life” – Lennon/McCartney – from “Sgt. Peppers” – 1967

There is so much going on in the world today that it is hard to pick a topic.

The passing of Senator Byrd and the posthumous right wing attacks on him? (Expected.) The situation with North Korea and demands, after sixty years that we withdraw our troops. (Where have you been for the last six decades?) Panetta’s comments about Iran. (Let’s start another war!) McChrystal? (No, he doesn’t have “freedom of speech.”) Jobs? (No kidding, it’s bad, but “we messed up, so vote for us!” doesn’t seem like a real good idea.) Kagan? (Dang, just confirm her and STFU!) Congress? (Yeah, they suck, but they are all we have.) Biden calls someone a smartass? (Damn, who wudda thunk it?) World Cup Soccer? (Beat that one to death already.)

My allergies? (Pfffffft! Ah-choo!) Cookie? (Doing better, groomed her myself so she is a bit cooler, too.) Weird pets? (The tubes aren’t big enough to tell all the stories about my weird pets!)

The weather? (Like that is a story?) Kansas? (It’s red and kinda flat.)

The SCOTUS gun decision yesterday? (Nope, saw that one coming a mile away.) Brownback, Tiahrt, Moran, Hartman, et al? (We have the loons by the bushel and peck.) Wichita? (Shoot, we are doing just okay despite ourselves.)

So, what should I write about today?

There is definitely a great surplus of topics that are on my mind and the minds of many others today.  Our warp-speed communication systems put everything on the table before we can even recognize that there is a table to put it on.  Dang, if you are bored, you can watch a live stream of the oil gushing on the floor of the Gulf. There is even a link available to watch the entire Isner – Mahut Wimbledon match on video – all eleven hours and five minutes of it.

The world, as we know it all to well, is a crazy place. What’s on your mind today?


William Stephenson Clark

39 Comments

Filed under Media

Are these the worst of times?

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”

“A Tale of Two Cities” – the opening line – Charles Dickens – 1859

Two wars. A fired commanding General. An economy that is stubbornly refusing to recover fast enough. A massive oil spill that threatens our Gulf. Illegal immigration. No progress on Gay Rights to speak of. Conflicts in the Middle East. Tin-pot dictators run amok. Global financial crisis. Congress in perpetual gridlock. Fred Phelps and the Phelp Tone-Deaf’s. Drug wars in Jamaica and Mexico. Global freakin’ warming. Sandra and Jesse back on speaking terms.

Are these the worst of times?

Hell, no!

Absolutely not. Yes, the world has more than it’s fair share of problems right about now, but these are far from the worst of times. It is human nature to look at today and be dissatisfied. It is also human nature to look at yesterday with a certain fondness for times that “were better.”

I wrote a column published yesterday with that very topic.

No, despite the troubles of the world, we have a bright future. We may not get there soon, but it is there. Collectively, we need to move beyond pessimism and consider the optimistic signs that point the way to a “best of times” scenario.

The wars that we are engaged in will end. We will recover from the global financial  crisis. The oil gushing in the Gulf will be stopped and we will find away to clean up the mess. The tin-pot dictators will die off and be replaced by slightly more sane alternatives. The slow progress of Gay Rights will accelerate as the more bigoted generation dies off. The illegal immigration problem will continue, but better solutions will come to the fore. Fred will die. Eventually, a saner approach to drugs will be adopted. And Jesse will screw up again and America’s Sweetheart will be back on the market.

Progress has been made, abet slowly. A historic, but flawed, Health Care bill has been passed. Medical science has moved to the point now that living to one hundred will be commonplace. The world will grow tired of perpetual conflicts in the Middle East and the white-hot hatred will cool. The world will change for the better.

The best of times – maybe not in our lifetimes – but they are coming.


William Stephenson Clark

21 Comments

Filed under Psychological Disorders, World Politics

Social Media, The Internet, and You

The Society of Professional Jounalists put on this program tonight at the former Church (located at 29th and Oliver) now owned by Wichita State University.  Some of you may remember this church as the large community church where the minister attempted to save his church by making a deal to distrubute cocaine.  He was caught on camera via a sting orchestrated by the F.B.I.  We do have some memorable characters in the church communities here in good ole Do-Dah, don’t we?

Sorry, I was digressing… The program was put on by the WSU Elliot School of Communication.  The program featured Ron Sylvester of the Wichita Eagle and Jeff Cutler a blogger and writer from Boston (http://www.blogger.com/profile/02095350031114092271).  Sylvester reports on crime and the courts in Wichta.  Jeff has a number of blogs and manages to make money with his blogging – a popular site of his has to do with what he considers edible.  Ron has become self-educated in terms of the social medias as part of doing his job.

A journalistic device the guys mentioned was looking up the facebook pages of accused murderers.  With that they are able to find “friends” and family to contact for stories.  The theme of the presentation was using social media to do one’s job as a journalist.  But also digressions were made in terms of social media aids in finding other work.

The presentation was what they promised: 60 sites in 60 minutes.  Here is the link:  http://60sitesin60minutes.blogspot.com/  I took notes, but it was hard to keep up.  A site I was impressed by that I’d not heard of was – http://addictomatic.com/ – this site searchs all search engines, Youtube, etc. regarding a subject.  It gives it all to you.

To keep up with the growing social sites, the presenters suggested keeping up with http://mashable.com/2009/08/03/facebook-journalism/ .

Jeff’s site was worth looking at.

iggydonnelly

2 Comments

Filed under Media, newspapers

Did You Know?

1 Comment

Filed under Just Plain Fun, Life Lessons, New Technology, Technology

What is my job as a citizen?

I’m struggling.

I want to toss some thoughts out because I’m not sure what a citizen’s role really is in the US anymore. I’m curious what people here think.

Until recently, I thought that my primary role in the running of our country was to communicate and understand what my elected officials were doing. Those who communicated effectively with me and who made decisions I either agreed with (or at least understood the logic behind) were to be rewarded with my vote. Those who were less effective in those tasks I’d vote to replace. That’s what I understood in my civics class back at Oxon Hill High School.

Maybe high school civics from the 70’s doesn’t really apply anymore.

A few years back, I resolved never to speak again on two things – faith and politics. It seemed to me that there was no longer the convention that folks could talk about these things, disagree, and move on as if they’d spoken about nothing of more consequence than the weather.

All the same, I slip up on that resolution sometimes.

Whats the point? Were not changing each others minds

What's the point? We're not changing each others minds

It has come to the point that when people discuss those topics, the goal is very often to bring the other person to the opposite side, or berate them as a fool, or worse. Continue reading

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Filed under Thinking/Considering, Uncategorized

Wednesday, 07/01/09, Public Square

half-cakeAbout one half of 2009 is under our belt. July 1 is the 182nd day of the year. There are 183 days remaining until the end of the year.

This is the thread you choose what to discuss. Got anything you want to get off your chest, share with other bloggers, or ask about?

fnord

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Filed under The Public Square