Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Open Forum

What's going on in your part of the state?

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Has anyone seen this site before:
http://www.actblue.com/directory/federal/house-af

It seems like a great way to donate to those candidates who don't have websites up. Like Paul Vance, who I saw interviewed on the site. Plus it encourages interest in other races that might not usually get the attention of activists.

Aldon Hynes said...

I have two things to bring up.

We've talked a little bit here about the municipal elections. I'm trying to build grassroots interest in the municipal elections, both in my role as Blogmaster for the DeStefano campaign, as well as in my role with a few other groups.

I have a blog post up on the DeStefano website talking about a few campaigns and asking for people's comments about those or other municipal races. I would love to get any comments or suggestions there.

Also, has a link to New Haven's press release about going wireless. Are there any other good wireless efforts going on in Connecticut?

Genghis Conn said...

I posted this short piece a while ago on Daily Kos, and I wanted to post it again here. This seems like the place to do so. It isn't quite Connecticut-related, but it does have to do with blogs and their historical antecedents. Pardon my vanity for posting it again:

What am I?

I'm relatively new.
I am becoming more popular; my readership grows with each year.
I am shrill, partisan and usually poorly edited.
I am replacing more traditional news sources.
Anyone who has the proper equipment may, and does, publish me.
My publisher is also my editor.
My truthfulness is often called into doubt.
I often publish slander and outright lies.
I am playing a major role in the major ideological and social conflict of my time.

So... what am I?

A colonial newspaper! Yes, from the 1760s up through the Revolutionary War, newspapers became more and more influential, and were an important source of information and propaganda. In fact, the nature and influence of these early newspapers can be compared to the mounting influence of blogs in our own time.

During the mid-to-late eighteenth century, newspapers became mich more common than ever before. Most larger cities in colonial America had at least one. As the Revolution approached, newspapers became a source of propaganda for both sides, inflaming revolutionary passions or damning the rebel cause.

These newspapers were nothing like what we have today. There were no "journalists", as such, and nothing like a modern newsroom. Indeed, printers usually edited the papers they printed themselves, while journeymen, associates or others familiar with what was happening wrote most of the articles. There were no journalistic standards, and much of the "news" was based entirely on hearsay.

The newspapers were useful in that they replaced word of mouth and government reports as the primary means of disseminating information

During the Revolution and its aftermath, political enemies used the papers to slander one another; a trend that would continue well into the twentieth century. Indeed, "journalism" as we know it didn't really appear until the Civil War, and even then wasn't quite the animal we're familiar with.

So the next time blogs are taken to task by the established press, remind them of where it is they come from.

Genghis Conn said...

Aldon,

That's excellent about wireless in New Haven. What a great idea! I don't think it's a bad thing at all for government to invest in Internet access for everyone who has a computer, which would really be the end result of a citywide wireless network.

Aldon Hynes said...

Genghis,

I think your comments about colonial newspapers are right on the mark. Many people I talk with speak not so much about the colonial newspapers, but of the pampleteers, not only in the United States, but also in France during their revolution as the antecedants of blogs.

An important part of democracy is each citizen having their voice. The current funding of campaigns and reliance on mass media broadcasts damages that. Blogs are an important way to help correct that.

My two cents,

Aldon

P.S. Somewhat related to this is a post I have on the group blog I write for which is how I got credentialed to cover the Democratic National Convention last year. Check out my latest post at Greater Democracy

Anonymous said...

Sitting here in Orange where the Dems are trying to be more and more Republican by the minute. Dems are against affordable housing, for big box sprawl development and for larger lot sizes. Reps are against big box development, and for smaller lot size. Help me, I am in Bizzarro World

MikeCT said...

Lt Gov, sort of Gubernatorial aspirant, and former really awful Senate President Pro Tem Kevin Sullivan makes some not terribly insightful comments on his new blog.