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Doug Ledford
Principal Software Engineer and R/C, billiards, and SCUBA enthusiast
Principal Software Engineer and R/C, billiards, and SCUBA enthusiast


The room for the "Why is TCP (ir)relevant" BOF was horribly undersized and overcrowded.
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You know, I don't make them very often, but when I do, I'm reminded just how tasty a red tea (rooibos) latte is.
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Trying to get wider coverage for this one.
Diane Russell
Diane Russell
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You know, I've contributed to the DSCC before (a group dedicated to trying to preserve Democratic control of the US Senate).  But, ever since that first contribution, I've been getting more and more irked by their emails.  Finally, I got fed up.  This is my response to their most recent email campaign:

You're emails read more like scams that grassroots campaigning.  See my comments inline below:

On 07/31/2013 10:46 AM, DSCC Rapid Response wrote:
> Last night, President Bill Clinton told thousands of proud Democrats in
> Kentucky that we could beat Mitch McConnell: “It’ll be long. It’ll be
> hard. But you can win it.”
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Contribute here to have your gift TRIPLE-MATCHED to our Emergency Media
> Campaign.

Triple matched FROM WHERE?  Where is this bastion of money that's sitting around doing nothing so that if I contribute today, someone/something else contributes three times a matching amount?  Are we just printing it up or what here?

> Doug -- Last night, President Bill Clinton told thousands of proud
> Democrats in Kentucky that we could beat Mitch McConnell: “It’ll be
> long. It’ll be hard. But you can win it.”

OK, long and hard.  So the election isn't tomorrow.  Got it.

> President Clinton is right. McConnell is the most unpopular senator in
> the country, and right now he's tied (45-45) with Alison Lundergan
> Grimes. With Nate Silver projecting that control of the entire Senate
> could hinge on whether we can defeat McConnell, it's absolutely
> necessary that we answer President Clinton’s call to action.
> That’s why we’re launching the 15 Hour Emergency Media Campaign to hit
> back against McConnell and vulnerable Republicans across the country.

Now wait a've been building this up as a Mitch McConnell thing, now you say "and vulnerable Republicans across the country".  Well, which is it?  Is it Mitch, or is it a bunch of them?

And what's with this "15 Hour Emergency Media Campaign"?  You just said it would be "long and hard".  Doesn't this mean we should pace ourselves, not blow all our resources in the beginning and then have nothing left towards the end?  Who is strategizing these things anyway...

> We
> must raise $150,000 by tonight’s FEC deadline,

What "tonight's FEC deadline"?  You keep saying that, like if we miss it then the world will end.  Every email you send me there is some FEC deadline or another.  I'm beginning to think, honestly, that there is a requirement that you turn in nightly figures for how much you are spending on election campaigns and so this is a normal, daily, routine deadline and you are just making it out to be some big deal that it's not.

> or we won’t be able to
> keep up with the GOP’s onslaught of attacks -- handing McConnell
> re-election and Republicans the Senate majority.

So we freely admit that all elections are bought and paid for now a days.  Democracy is dead, fascism rules.  Is that it?  If we don't pony up the cash, the Republicans win.  Sounds to me like our system is broken.

> *Will you pitch in to our Emergency Media Campaign? We’ll TRIPLE-MATCH
> every gift for the next 15 hours.*

Oh, so you guys are the ones sitting on a mountain of cash that you can triple match out of.  Then why the hell are you asking me for more?

Like I said, your emails read more like scams than legitimate emails.  As a result, I donated once, then I started to see the same thing over and over again, with all these deadlines, and emergency needs, etc.  I've never donated since.  If you want my money, here's what I want from your organization:

1) An accounting of funds received and under what pushes (aka, defeat Mitch McConnell)
2) How much from each push was actually spent on advertising and other legitimate campaign expenses for the candidate.  This total can not include anything paid to any employee or affiliate of the DSCC.
3) How much has been spent on overhead (internet expenses, computer expenses)
4) How much has been paid to employees of the DSCC
5) How much has been paid to contractors of the DSCC, with a special emphasis on contractors that might have an affiliation with employees or other members of the DSCC
6) Results.  Which races did your activities have an impact on, and what was the final outcome of all races that you have helped to fund.
7) Schedules.  You have a number of things you are fund raising for now.  When are those races scheduled to go to a vote and what is your plan for advertising and other expenses not just tomorrow, but all the way up until the race is final.

You get me that information, and I'll start contributing again.  Otherwise, you're just another solicitor using scare tactics instead of legitimate information to try and force people to give you money.
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Downtown Boston, MA, USA.  The white lights almost seem like a little slice of Narnia in the middle of Boston ;-)

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Sometimes you catch something different in your light trails...LED police car lights...

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After herniating a disc in my back for the third time, I decided I needed to switch up how I did my work. Here are some pictures of both my old workspace once I got it cleaned up, and the new walk station I installed here at the house for working from.
4 Photos - View album
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Nicely written, and devoid of the typical emotional and irrational arguments that both sides of the issue make.
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Happy Thanksgiving everyone.  And a quick reminder for people that are thinking about going out on Black Friday (or as I call it, Sucker Day), do your fellow shoppers a favor and take photos of some of the sale items you see out both during the Black Friday sales and after the store says they are over.  Most stores are fairly honest, but a few stores in particular (Hello Macy's) have a reputation for totally deceiving their customers (example from a few years back at Macy's...they had the Keurig K Cup coffee make I was looking for, and that I had researched online so I already knew what the manufacturer's suggested retail price Macy's, during the Black Friday sale, they had marked the "Original Price" on their sign way up to something like $60 over MSRP, and then marked it as 60% off to make is sounds like some fantastic deal, when it was really more like 30% off of the real MSRP...then once noon arrived, they put up a new sign to replace the Black Friday sale sign and it listed the real MSRP as the original price, and gave a 30% off discount from it, and the Black Friday sales price and the post Black Friday sales price worked out to be within one or two dollars of each other).  So, do you research, know what you want to buy, and don't get suckered in by deceptive department stores that are hoping you will all be a bunch of ravenous beasts that will devour any deceptive sale in front of you just because they put some huge %off deduction on a misleading sign.
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