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Re: [govtrack] Re: question about voting

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  • Harvey Frey
    Josh: So what you re saying is that the technical issues raised by tay199 are irrelevant, since there is no practical way to get the attention of any
    Message 1 of 21 , Jun 23, 2008
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      Josh:
       
          So what you're saying is that the technical issues raised by tay199 are irrelevant, since there is no practical way to get the attention of any congresspeople, short of arriving with large checks in hand.
       
          I don't know that that's necessarily so, since I've been asked, out of the blue, (just on the basis of my website) to help a congressman and later a senator draft legislation on the ERISA issue.
       
          Of course, neither of them paid any attention to what I wrote. <G>
      But I think that's because they were both republicans and not sympathetic to my more patient-oriented initiatives.  
       
          So, I wouldn't be completely pessimistic, given that we may have a new congress more interested in new approaches.
       
      Harvey
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Monday, June 23, 2008 5:02 PM
      Subject: Re: [govtrack] Re: question about voting

      hsfrey wrote:
      > Why must this wait for something "revolutionary" ?
      >
      > There are plenty of kludges out there that will let us get started, if
      > we really want to do it.
      >
      > Why not a wiki, or a forum, or a listserve, or even the "track
      > changes" option on WinWord.

      Well, go for it, by all means. :)

      But to add a sense of reality- Members of Congress have little interest
      in what ordinary people say, beyond what can be reduced to a single
      word. That's not entirely because they don't care, but largely because
      they can't open their ears to everyone. And it takes a lot of voices to
      be heard, considerably more than one can muster without a lot of
      experience in doing that. And there needs to be considerably more people
      involved than can coherently work together using a wiki, forum, or mail
      list. We're talking thousands if not tens of thousands for national issues.

      And that's just the technical challenge. The social challenges are much
      more difficult.

      A prototype using any technology might be informative, but I think only
      a creative technological approach could really work.

      > Mixedink seems to be WishWare.

      I know they had a coherent plan at one point.

      --
      - Josh Tauberer
      - GovTrack.us

      http://razor. occams.info

      "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
      falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
      Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)

    • tay199
      So what do you guys have in mind? Is as simple as write-a-bill with wiki backbone? If so, this is very doable. ... tay199 are irrelevant, since there is no
      Message 2 of 21 , Jun 24, 2008
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        So what do you guys have in mind? Is as simple as "write-a-bill" with
        wiki backbone? If so, this is very doable.









        --- In govtrack@yahoogroups.com, "Harvey Frey" <hsfrey@...> wrote:
        >
        > Josh:
        >
        > So what you're saying is that the technical issues raised by
        tay199 are irrelevant, since there is no practical way to get the
        attention of any congresspeople, short of arriving with large checks
        in hand.
        >
        > I don't know that that's necessarily so, since I've been asked,
        out of the blue, (just on the basis of my website) to help a
        congressman and later a senator draft legislation on the ERISA issue.
        >
        > Of course, neither of them paid any attention to what I wrote. <G>
        > But I think that's because they were both republicans and not
        sympathetic to my more patient-oriented initiatives.
        >
        > So, I wouldn't be completely pessimistic, given that we may have
        a new congress more interested in new approaches.
        >
        > Harvey
        >
        > ----- Original Message -----
        > From: Josh Tauberer
        > To: govtrack@yahoogroups.com
        > Sent: Monday, June 23, 2008 5:02 PM
        > Subject: Re: [govtrack] Re: question about voting
        >
        >
        > hsfrey wrote:
        > > Why must this wait for something "revolutionary"?
        > >
        > > There are plenty of kludges out there that will let us get
        started, if
        > > we really want to do it.
        > >
        > > Why not a wiki, or a forum, or a listserve, or even the "track
        > > changes" option on WinWord.
        >
        > Well, go for it, by all means. :)
        >
        > But to add a sense of reality- Members of Congress have little
        interest
        > in what ordinary people say, beyond what can be reduced to a single
        > word. That's not entirely because they don't care, but largely
        because
        > they can't open their ears to everyone. And it takes a lot of
        voices to
        > be heard, considerably more than one can muster without a lot of
        > experience in doing that. And there needs to be considerably more
        people
        > involved than can coherently work together using a wiki, forum, or
        mail
        > list. We're talking thousands if not tens of thousands for
        national issues.
        >
        > And that's just the technical challenge. The social challenges are
        much
        > more difficult.
        >
        > A prototype using any technology might be informative, but I think
        only
        > a creative technological approach could really work.
        >
        > > Mixedink seems to be WishWare.
        >
        > I know they had a coherent plan at one point.
        >
        > --
        > - Josh Tauberer
        > - GovTrack.us
        >
        > http://razor.occams.info
        >
        > "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
        > falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
        > Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
        >
      • Ralph Yozzo
        ... Doesn t this show that, if this is true, that any system that gives the power/voice/vote of many to a few or to one is not a good system. The one will be
        Message 3 of 21 , Jun 24, 2008
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          since there is no practical way to get the attention of any congresspeople, short of arriving with large checks in hand.
           
          Doesn't this show that, if this is true, that any system that gives the power/voice/vote of many to a few or to one is not a good system.  The one will be the target of corruption.  Imagine the opposite.  A system where all 6 billion people were involved.  I'd like to see the lobbyists bribe 6 billion.  For once, bribery would be a good thing.

          On Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 12:20 AM, Harvey Frey <hsfrey@...> wrote:

          Josh:
           
              So what you're saying is that the technical issues raised by tay199 are irrelevant, since there is no practical way to get the attention of any congresspeople, short of arriving with large checks in hand.
           
              I don't know that that's necessarily so, since I've been asked, out of the blue, (just on the basis of my website) to help a congressman and later a senator draft legislation on the ERISA issue.
           
              Of course, neither of them paid any attention to what I wrote. <G>
          But I think that's because they were both republicans and not sympathetic to my more patient-oriented initiatives.  
           
              So, I wouldn't be completely pessimistic, given that we may have a new congress more interested in new approaches.
           
          Harvey
           
          ----- Original Message -----
          Sent: Monday, June 23, 2008 5:02 PM
          Subject: Re: [govtrack] Re: question about voting

          hsfrey wrote:
          > Why must this wait for something "revolutionary"?
          >
          > There are plenty of kludges out there that will let us get started, if
          > we really want to do it.
          >
          > Why not a wiki, or a forum, or a listserve, or even the "track
          > changes" option on WinWord.

          Well, go for it, by all means. :)

          But to add a sense of reality- Members of Congress have little interest
          in what ordinary people say, beyond what can be reduced to a single
          word. That's not entirely because they don't care, but largely because
          they can't open their ears to everyone. And it takes a lot of voices to
          be heard, considerably more than one can muster without a lot of
          experience in doing that. And there needs to be considerably more people
          involved than can coherently work together using a wiki, forum, or mail
          list. We're talking thousands if not tens of thousands for national issues.

          And that's just the technical challenge. The social challenges are much
          more difficult.

          A prototype using any technology might be informative, but I think only
          a creative technological approach could really work.

          > Mixedink seems to be WishWare.

          I know they had a coherent plan at one point.

          --
          - Josh Tauberer
          - GovTrack.us

          http://razor.occams.info

          "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
          falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
          Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)


        • Josh Tauberer
          ... I m happy to host a wiki for this if there are people willing to maintain it. -- - Josh Tauberer - GovTrack.us http://razor.occams.info Yields falsehood
          Message 4 of 21 , Jun 25, 2008
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            tay199 wrote:
            > So what do you guys have in mind? Is as simple as "write-a-bill" with
            > wiki backbone? If so, this is very doable.

            I'm happy to host a wiki for this if there are people willing to
            maintain it.

            --
            - Josh Tauberer
            - GovTrack.us

            http://razor.occams.info

            "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
            falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
            Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
          • Josh Tauberer
            ... I m just saying that something simple isn t very likely to have any real effect. There has to be real innovation somewhere. ... I m glad to hear that that
            Message 5 of 21 , Jun 25, 2008
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              Harvey Frey wrote:
              > So what you're saying is that the technical issues raised by tay199
              > are irrelevant, since there is no practical way to get the attention of
              > any congresspeople, short of arriving with large checks in hand.

              I'm just saying that something simple isn't very likely to have any real
              effect. There has to be real innovation somewhere.

              > I don't know that that's necessarily so, since I've been asked, out
              > of the blue, (just on the basis of my website) to help a congressman and
              > later a senator draft legislation on the ERISA issue.
              >
              > Of course, neither of them paid any attention to what I wrote. <G>
              > But I think that's because they were both republicans and not
              > sympathetic to my more patient-oriented initiatives.

              I'm glad to hear that that happened. Maybe the problem isn't quite as
              big as I thought.

              --
              - Josh Tauberer
              - GovTrack.us

              http://razor.occams.info

              "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
              falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
              Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)
            • Harvey Frey
              The engine used by wikipedia is available for free for non-profit use at http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/MediaWiki. I had once thought of using it on my own
              Message 6 of 21 , Jun 26, 2008
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                The engine used by wikipedia is available for free for non-profit use at http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/MediaWiki.
                 
                I had once thought of using it on my own website, but I think it's beyond my technical skills.
                 
                    A couple of others that looked attractive were Midgard Wiki and MoinMoin. An extensive comparison is at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_wiki_software
                 
                I'd be happy to moderate (and I think it SHOULD be moderated, to avoid wikipedia-style edit wars) the discussion on ERISA and health care.
                 
                As for a legislator willing to consider hoppering a bill to fix ERISA, I notice that Jean Shaheen, running in New Hampshire, has expressly made that part of her platform.
                 
                Harvey
                 
                ----- Original Message -----
                Sent: Wednesday, June 25, 2008 5:52 AM
                Subject: Re: [govtrack] Re: question about voting

                tay199 wrote:
                > So what do you guys have in mind? Is as simple as "write-a-bill" with
                > wiki backbone? If so, this is very doable.

                I'm happy to host a wiki for this if there are people willing to
                maintain it.

                --
                - Josh Tauberer
                - GovTrack.us

                http://razor. occams.info

                "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
                falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
                Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)

              • Ralph Yozzo
                I would love to volunteer for technical tasks. Especially for web app programming, etc. As time permits. I ve installed a lot of wiki s, calendars, credit
                Message 7 of 21 , Jun 26, 2008
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                  I would love to volunteer for technical tasks.  Especially for web app programming, etc.  As time permits.

                  I've installed a lot of wiki's, calendars, credit card/debit card processing for many clubs, etc.

                  the credit card/debit card processing is also free for nonprofits.

                  On Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 5:56 PM, Harvey Frey <hsfrey@...> wrote:

                  The engine used by wikipedia is available for free for non-profit use at http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/MediaWiki.
                   
                  I had once thought of using it on my own website, but I think it's beyond my technical skills.
                   
                      A couple of others that looked attractive were Midgard Wiki and MoinMoin. An extensive comparison is at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_wiki_software
                   
                  I'd be happy to moderate (and I think it SHOULD be moderated, to avoid wikipedia-style edit wars) the discussion on ERISA and health care.
                   
                  As for a legislator willing to consider hoppering a bill to fix ERISA, I notice that Jean Shaheen, running in New Hampshire, has expressly made that part of her platform.
                   
                  Harvey
                   
                  ----- Original Message -----
                  Sent: Wednesday, June 25, 2008 5:52 AM
                  Subject: Re: [govtrack] Re: question about voting

                  tay199 wrote:
                  > So what do you guys have in mind? Is as simple as "write-a-bill" with
                  > wiki backbone? If so, this is very doable.

                  I'm happy to host a wiki for this if there are people willing to
                  maintain it.

                  --
                  - Josh Tauberer
                  - GovTrack.us

                  http://razor.occams.info

                  "Yields falsehood when preceded by its quotation! Yields
                  falsehood when preceded by its quotation!" Achilles to
                  Tortoise (in "Godel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter)


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