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October 22, 2003
Slate of the Moment
Two cool things from Slate, why the Republicans are wrong to discount the importance of the Northeast, and then a description of a medical procedure used on Roy (of Siegfried fame) where they implant a piece of skull they had to remove into his abdomen for safe keeping...really kind of interesting.

Local News of the Moment
Huh. Waltham is having a ballot initiative "Question 1", that would reduce property taxes by 25%, though quite possibly at the cost of services like non-fee-based garbage and recycling. Dale Worley has made a page analyzing the issue. Frankly, I don't put a lot of trust in citizen based tax cuts like this. I'm no fan of government waste, but I tend to prefer stronger services over lower taxes.

Quote of the Moment
The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.
Winston Churchill
This kind of helps explain why I'm against this general trend of more things decided by direct ballot. We're not a direct democracy, we're a democratic republic, and that old line about "democracy being two wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner" comes to mind. (2019 UPDATE: so the electoral college is still a lousy idea - or rather, a bound delegates make it a shitty implementation, despite what protections the system offers for underpopulated rural (and one time slave-owning-- not a coincidence) areas)

News of the Past Moment
Huh, I didn't hear that much about the guy who went over Niagra Falls...mostly just references to it happening.