Our addiction to oil…

The POTUS saying we are addicted to oil makes no sense (not that much of what he says makes ANY sense…but I digress) Our “addiction” only exists because most car manufacturers cannot make cars that get better than 25 MPG, our public transportation “system” is a shambles or non existant, and there is no funding to develop alternative sources of energy.

Yes, Americans use tremendous amounts of oil. But the fault doesn’t just lay with the people. As far as I know, during the entire 2005 model line GM didn’t have a single hybrid. Not one. Toyota’s and Honda’s hybrid’s have proven so popular that the waiting list for them is MONTHS. So what are families supposed to do if cars that get better gas mileage, just don’t exist? Take public transportation? Please….

Public transportation is a mess in this country. I cannot travel (easily) from one city to another using public transportation. Bike lanes are few and far between. Most cities aren’t even bike friendly.

All this being said, Ford and GM are in trouble. Is this because their current car lineup looks like ass or is it because there is a changing of the guard? Are people not buying these cars because they demand cars that are better for the environment? Are they not buying these cars because the gas mileage is horrendous? I surely hope that it’s because consumers are getting smarter and more energy conscious. The POTUS simply saying that Americans are addicted to oil, lumps the general population in with the corporations. What he could have said, that would have made more sense, is that American Corporations are addicted to oil…..

 

A Followup To China and Censorship

This is a followup to my previous post regarding MSN Spaces and the pro-democracy blogger from China.Microsoft employees are now officially defending Microsoft’s removal of the offending blogger. They’re justifying it by basically saying that a business model will ALWAYS SUPERSEDE any basic human rights…

In China, there is a unique issue for our entire industry: there are certain aspects of speech in China that are regulated by the government. We�ve made a choice to run a service in China, and to do that, we need to adhere to local regulations and laws. This is not unique to MSN Spaces; this is something that every company has to do if they operate in China. So, if a Chinese blog on MSN Spaces is reported to us by the community, or the Chinese government, as offensive, we have to ask ourselves: is this blog adhering to our code of Conduct? In many cases, the answer is �yes, this site is fine�. But, in some cases, the answer is �no�. And when an offense is found that actually breaks a national law, we have no choice but to take down the site.

I would have to question then why anyone would do business in China? It’s about the almighty dollar. Money before freedoms. As long as Microsoft can pursue a quick buck in China, it’s willing to turn it’s head when it comes to basic human rights. The very ones that we hold so near and dear in this country. It’s astounding to me that they don’t recognize this.

 

China and Censorship

Say what you will about living in the United States, we still don’t have it as bad as people living in Communist China.

Microsoft, in a move that has me scratching my head, apparently pulled a pro-democracy, Chinese bloggers, blog, from MSN Spaces under pressure from the Chinese government. Robert Scoble (a technical evangelist at Microsoft) writes

Well, you ignore the voices of individual people at your peril. And, I�ve been raised by people who taught me the value of standing up for the little guy. My mom grew up in Germany. Her mom stood up to the Nazis (and got a lot of scorn from family and friends for doing so).

Amen. Where will this end? I have to wonder if this were a pro-communism blog and the United States government had asked Microsoft to take it down, if they would have?