September 17, 2003
Mightier Than Swords
The Writers Guild of America is launching an ad campaign to promote the roles of screenwriters as the well-spring of the great stories of our time. So, here's my contribution to the effort. Free ad space for the guild. Everybody gives directors credit for creating the films, but, if you think about it for a moment, the directors, the cast, the crew, the producers, were all originally inspired by the work of us screenwrights. Every movie starts as a blank page under a waiting pen.
And, just to drive the point home, here are the screenwriters credited for the top movies at the box office last weekend:
written by Robert Rodriguez
screenplay by Nicholas Griffin & Ted Griffin
based on the book by Eric Garcia
story by Eli Roth
written by Eli Roth and Randy Pearlstein
written by Fred Wolf & David Spade
So the next time you go to the cinema, take a moment to check out whp gets the writing credit. Over time, when you start seeing names repeated, you might just find a pattern. Who knows how many of your favorite movies are all written by the same people?
So, I recently had a conversation with a friend about voting booths. Ever since the Florida fiasco in 2000, everyone's all fired up about how bad punch card ballots are. So, there's a big push for electronic voting, in all it's various shapes and forms (internet voting, touch pad voting, etc.).
As a former techie, I'd like to give you all a cold slap of conspiracy-laden reality:
It is FAR easier to rig an election when the votes are only stored in the memory of a computer program, instead of on a physical, certified piece of paper.
Quite honestly, the employees of any company that provides hardware or software for electronic voting machines should be subjected to the utmost scrutiny. Heaven forbid an unscrupulous politician bribed some poor programmer to build an easter egg into the tabulation modules that guarantees a landslide victory for him with no paper trail.
But I digress. Because, according to David Broder, the Constitution gives the state governments the power to determine how their delegates to the Electoral College should be selected. And it doesn't have to be by a vote of the public. That's why some folks are talking about a constitutional amendment to guarantee all citizens the right to vote.
Yes, that's right. You DO NOT have that now. You vote for President at the pleasure of Gray Davis, George Pataki, Jeb Bush, and the 47 other state governors around the country.