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The event organizers knew they wanted Mike Masnick to speak, but some worried that he'd be too controversial, too Jerry Springer. Masnick runs Techdirt.com, one of the most popular hubs on the web...
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I watched "Sports Night" and read "Moneyball" on your recommendation. What's to hate?
 
"Many lawmakers told their visitors that this was the first time that they had heard from anyone in Silicon Valley about any issue at all."

Sadly, I fully believe this line - and fully believe this reflects even more poorly (if possible) on the lawmakers for not being aggressive about finding out what is bothering their constituency.
 
+Billy Harvey Sadly, I fully believe this line - and fully believe this reflects even more poorly (if possible) on the lawmakers for not being aggressive about finding out what is bothering their constituency.

It cuts both ways. How do they do so? Part of the problem is an increasing disconnect between elected officials and constituents. An awful lot of folks don't bother to try to communicate with the elected representatives whose constituency they are part of. Lawmakers are often working in a vacuum. They want to be reelected, and that means pleasing constituents and getting votes, but can only guess in many cases about what will please the voters.

It was the first time they had heard from Silicon Valley because it was the first time anyone from Silicon Valley had contacted them. We elect lawmakers, and it's on us to communicate our expectations. If we don't, we can't complain too hard about what we get. Businesses maintain lobbyists to communicate their concerns to lawmakers, but what the lawmakers get out of it is money. What keeps them in office is votes, and it's on us to lobby on our own behalves and communicate our interests.
 
+Dennis McCunney It's their job - it's an excuse for them if they sit in their office and say "oh, but I never heard there was a problem" - that's not leadership, and that's what they are elected to provide.
 
Keep it up Mike. Lots more people respect you than the minority idiot trolls that I read everyday on Techdirt. Keep your head up buddy!!
 
+Billy Harvey No. It's their job to represent me. It's my job to tell them what I want. Just how do you suppose they hear of problems if constituents don't talk to them? They're sitting in an office in DC. The problem is happening somewhere else entirely.
 
I don't think any politician cares what you think or want. This is a republic not a democracy.
 
+Jim Blaich They care that you vote for them. This requires them to at least appear to care what you think and want.
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