Category Archives: public discourse

Paris Climate Pull-out and U.S. Senators

As soon as POTUS removed the US from the Paris Climate Agreement, the anti-Republicans posted a list of Republican Senators who sent POTUS a letter encouraging him to pull out of the Agreement. Most also happened to have received significant campaign contributions from Big Petro. All together, the 22 Republican signatories received $10,694,284 in donations. Here’s the list.

Continue reading

Op-Ed: How Strong is the Anti-Development Sentiment in Village at the Park?

NOTE: This is a short piece I wrote for and posted to a neighborhood Facebook group on 3 June. I live in Village at the Park (VATP), and there’s a bit of a kerfuffle about plans to develop a vacant three-acre lot into am upscale, senior assisted living facility. I’m not against it. But people who are against it have twisted the truth a bit, and I wanted my other neighbors to know that these whiners are a relatively small group, despite the noise they are making. I also wanted to engage my neighbors in conversation on the topic. Ninety-seven comments so far, including a handful from me.

This is a medium-length post for my neighbors in VATP who are watching the Not-In-My-Backyard (NIMBY) opposition to the Oakmont project and wondering how much support they have. I’ve done a little sleuthing and can tell you what I’ve learned. Spoiler: the NIMBYs represent a tiny minority of our neighbors.

Continue reading

Is the America Invents Act Digging Us Deeper?

It looks like the America Invents Act has been passed by both the House and Senate, and it is on its way to the President’s desk. And it looks like the President is going to sign the bill. What is this going to mean?

I do not know much about intellectual property policy, but everybody knows that American patent system is seriously broken. From the backlog of patents that have been filed and are waiting to be reviewed, to the absurd patents that are being granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office, to patent trolling that is now a business (cf. the business practices of Intellectual Ventures), and the technology patent wars that corporations are waging. It’s all craziness.

And now it appears there is going to be a revision to the way patents are granted that puts more power into the hands of the large corporations. Where ‘invention’ had been the act that merited a patent, now it seems that filing paperwork on an idea first will now take precedence. How is this an improvement in the system? How is this going to help fix the problems in the US patent system?

Really, I want to know. Please share what you know. Share links. Share information. Please.

Update: The NYTimes.com has an article on this: Fighting Backlog in Patents, Senate Approves Overhaul