To The Next President and The People of The USA

October 7, 2008

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

To The Next President and The People of The USA

Change is the most important thing that I can think of that our country needs. We need to change so many things, in so many areas, that it is almost hard to know where to start. I do not want to change things just to change them. I really believe we need to change somethings that are fundamentally wrong in our government.

Where do I begin? I guess the most important change we need is to get rid of professional politicians. Why you ask? Well, when our government officials changed over from being citizens who wanted to contribute to ones who wanted to make a living being a government employee, we all lost out.

Professional politicians have but one agenda, to be reelected, everything after that is just gravy.
unfortunately they are not making enough gravy for the rest of us anymore, and are hogging all the good stuff for themselves.

We have to get back to our leaders being statesmen again. If they can’t be reelected to that office, then maybe they will be able to focus on something that needs to be done about our problems.

Statesmen in my opinion, act for the national good, rather than only on what will get them reelected to their office again. Statesmen act for the greater good of our country. They do the right thing for the right reason. Being a statesmen means making hard decisions which are for not necessarily popular back home with the voters but that are the right thing to do any way. If you can not be reelected then that removes the incentives to please everyone and allows you to do the next right thing. One of the guiding principles is that they should represent thier constituence, by being one of them. No special perks, if the folks back home don’t have it, they don’t either.

So how do we find citizen who will serve rather than be served by their position?

I am not complete sure of how to go about that, perhaps if we settled the campain finacing problem we could find better people to run. So first of all we have to make all campains finaced by government funds. Perhaps we could allow some contributions but we must limit them to say $50.00 and only from private citizens. No corporate donatations, no PACS, and only from constituents of that area. We can not allow outside contibutions so that the statesman are only beholden to thier constituents and no one else. We have to get rid of professonal lobbists also.

Then anyone who can get enough signatures on a petition could run for office. Perhaps there could be some kind of draft or jury duty selection system to help pick everyday people. There would need to be a minium number of people on the ballet, if there were more than 3 then a runoff election could be held, to pick the final two contestents.

I recognize that to leave your job and go serve for a term of a office, that would put a strain on a person so there could be a law, like for national guard duty, such that when you term is over your previous employer has to offer your job back or one similar to the one you had.

Compensation should be approprate for the service done but not skyhigh, the purpose is to support that person and thier family while they serve in the term of office, but not make them millionaires just because the held office. Income would/should be limited, to thier official salary. While they serve they should pay into social security and pay taxes just like anyone else. They should have the same health plan every other government employee has while they serve.

We need to change our attitudes and actions to reflect a more realistic view of what is important in the world. I have nothing against sports or entertainment, but making them heros, and overpaying them makes the real important jobs being done by everyday joes unimportant and unattractive. Solders, Firemen, Police Officers, School Teachers, Scientists, Construction Workers should be our heros. They are the ones making america what is is, not some tv, movie or sports personality. they are not the one we need to think of as our heros. I want my grand kids to trade school teacher cards or scientist cards not baseball cards.

I think we need to put thing that are really important in the proper perspective.
A person who spends 20 or 30 years teaching make a real difference in our world. A grown man who plays a game 12 times a year, should not be paid more that a school teacher. A person who is a Firemen or a Police officer for 20 or 30 years gives much more to our society that a person who sings a song and stars in a movie.

If we teach our kids that service to our country is more important than singing a song, or staring in a movie, or playing a game; then that would fundementally change the hopes and dreams of our children.

Greed is something that we are teach our kids is the right thing to do. when we reward ceo’s who are make multi-million of dollars a year by bankrupting thier companies and the citizens of the usa, what are we saying to our kids. Money has value but Integrity is much more valueable than anything we can buy. We need to teach integrity as the guiding principle of our country not greed.

If we are going to acend to the moral high ground and speakout for the weak and oppressed of the world, then we have to stop supporting dictators, and start support democracy. We have to stop killing elected official of foreign government and start praticing what we are suppose to be living. Honesty, Integrity, Service, these have to become our bywords not greed, curruption, slavery.

When we buy goods made in a third world country that doesn’t have labor laws to protect the workers we are purpetuating a form of slaverly. I would rather pay more for something that know I supported some kind of corporate greed and living high on the hog while others suffer so i can have it all.

We have to start looking at the long term actions of our actions around the world. Short term gains that hurt others are not worthy of us or them. We should not just talk the talk we should walk the walk.

When anyone anywhere is oppressed and poor, we all are oppressed and poorer for it. We will have to start at home and make these changes here first, then consider the best course of actions to further our cause. Beleiving we are better than anyone else makes us just like everyone else, by making us no better than “them.” We have to start beleiving in humanity as a whole species rather than believing we are all different and that some are somehow better than others.

We need a pyshic change. We have to start caring for ourselves as others, instead of just about ourselves. we have to change what we think of as important, and recognize service to others is the most couragous and honorable thing we can do. To paraphrase JFK, “Ask not what you can get out of this but what you can do to make this a better place for others.”

We all want our kids to grow up with self esteem, by teaching them honesty, integrity and service they will growup with self esteem and our world will be a better place for it. We need to instill a need for service, for honesty, for integrity in our children then we will have something the rest of the world will want and hopefully we can help them learn it too, But first we must begin at home and change ourselves, our kids, our country, our culture, our hopes dreamds and desires; Charity begins at home, service starts at home, true love means, loving us all, not just the ones exactly like us.

Now that is the kind of Change I think we need. I just do not know how in the world to get it done when we all are better than everyone else and we are all in it for what we can get out of it.

How do you change the hearts and minds of America and eventually the world?

You start with an idea. You tell everyone you know about your idea, and you pray like hell someone listens, and starts telling others. Only you can make the change you want in this world and only by doing it yourself. You lead by example, walk the walk, dont just talk the talk.
Posted by Robert Mark White at 8:57 PM 0 comments
Labels: change, government, news, opinion, politics, service

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Identity, Who am I?

April 27, 2008

Well that is a very important question. I am the son of Robert and Joy White. I am the brother of John and Stephen White. I am the husband of Doris White. I am the parent of Robert and Jennifer White. I am a employee of Walmart, in Parker Colorado. I have a United States Passport, I have a Colorado drivers licenses. I was born in Austin Texas. Each of those is a piece of informations which describes who I am. But is that the real me? They do not talk about the experiences I have had, or the education I have had, or what I believe about me or what I believe about the reason for human existence. How do you find out who I am?

On the Internet it is even harder to come to a exact description of who a person is or their identity. The Internet was designed without the idea of identity built into its structure. My computer has an IP, but that is not who i am. I have a email address but that is not who I am. Those at best are just identifying information about me or my computer or where i receive email. Both of those pieces of information can be changed and they will not change who I am. The best way to describe me is by saying who I have been known by or as, or by what I have done and or when and or where that happened. Collectively I can be identified by who i am known by and what i have done and when and where that happened. Those kinds of information can be checked and verified by asking other people, or checking records at other institutions and locations. My identity could be described as what I have done and when and where I did it. The same things can be said about my identity of the web. This information could be called my online reputation or my online identity.

So how do you find out who I am on the web? Well I have done a lot of the work for you. I have found a site called Claimid.com. http://claimid.com/rmarkwhite This is a collection of the sites that I participate on on the web. There are other sites that could be called search engines or aggregaters. Some of them seach the web and look for identifying information and make list where that identifying information is located. Google is probally the best know of these places. Go to http://Google.com and Google your name. Find out what Google knows about you. Wink.com and Spock.com are two of the best identity aggregaters.

If you want to know who I am you could ask the people who know me. How would you find them? well i have done some of the work for you. I have a PGP key. Some of the people I know on the web have signed my pgp key saying that they know me. I have a foaf file I have filled out saying that I know a rather large group of various people around the world that I have listed in that file. On various social networks I have lists of people who are variously called my friends or contacts or otherwise have been identified as knowing me. Classmate.com is an excellent way to find out who I went to school with or worked with.

Ok, then who am I? That my friend is something i have spent my whole life trying to figure out. Only a very few select people really know the real whole of me. I think I really like it that way, to tell you the truth. I have written at least one book of my thoughts and beliefs trying to describe in words what i think I know about life and other things… http://geocities.com/rmarkwhite/toc.html

I have many blogs, more than I can keep up with really http://robertmarkwhite.blogspot.com is my political blog. I have been writing there for a few years now about politics in the USA.

I guess the best answer is if you find out please let me know. I have been wondering about that my whole lifetime.

sincerely yours

me

<!– ckey=”592032A7″ –>

RDF, the idea of the connected web.

April 27, 2008

I have been struggling to learn about RDF lately. Rdf is a way to write/store/exchange information that is usable in many ways. If i write a paper in english and send it to a person that doesn’t speak english the information in the paper is worthless. However the beauty of rdf is that the information is written in a such a way that it can almost universally be able to be understood, by a person using almost any language. What is really special is that a machine/computer with the proper programing of course, can also read and understand this information.

Language has been a barrier to human communacations since the beginning of language itself. But teaching computers to read and understand what they are reading has been a even bigger problem. Words are only understood in the context that they are used. RDF encodes the information in a fixed or rigid context that can be understood by anyone or any computer programed to do just that. The way this is done is called ontologies. Ontologies are structured vocabularies. These Vocabularies are found on the Web and so when you reference the word you are trying to encode in a rdf document with the URL of the definition of that word, then the word can be understood in context by another human being anywhere that they can access the web or any machine/computer that can also access that information on the web. Many of these ontologies are being cross referenced to many different languages around the world, so if the word is cross referenced or translated into the language you are sending the information to, then the other person who speaks the other language can also understand what you are saying.

To give you a simple example, if I say my mothers name is Joy in english, and the ontology I am using to reference the word mother, is also referenced in the language of the person I am sending this informations to, they they will know that the English word Mother means Mother in their own language and that my mothers name is then word Joy.

Now to do this I must list the name of the ontology I am using and the URL of that ontology, and use proper reference word to the word Mother in that ontology, then the person receiving the information can access the ontology using the url giving and access it in their own language and then lookup the referenced word used for Mother in their own language, then they will know what I am talking about. The same system must be used for each term/word I talk about in the paper.

{Me} {Mother’s} {Name}

{ME} the person making the statement – http://someurl.com/ontology/me

{Mother} the relationship to me – http://someurl.com/ontology/mother

{Name} her name – http://someurl.com/ontology/name

Marks mothers name is Joy.

Now do this for every statement you make and you now understand RDF.

This system can be applied to any topic that there is a ontology to express. Most of the ontologies are scientific in nature, such as in Genetics, or Biology or in other fields of Medicine. However there are ontologies for recipes for cooking, or describing books or papers written. There are even ontologies for describing the discussions on the Internet. This is what they are describing when they are calling the Internet the connected data network. As more and more information or data is encoded into the rdf type formats more and more information will become connected. This will make information on the web searchable by computers and understandable by anyone anywhere using any language.

Microformats, another great idea.

April 27, 2008

I have been learning about Microformats recently. Microformats are a way to imbed information on web pages so that machines can read them and index the information and truly use the information they are picking up. The problem with web pages as they have been for years is that people could read them with no problems but machines could not really understand what was on the page. With microformats computers can not only read a web page with microformats on it, but can understand what information is encoded into them. This is important so that a computer can read a page and answer questions about what the information is and what it means.  Before you could have a web page with your travel plans on it and your friends could read it but a computer could not understand what the information meant or use it to answer questions about your travel plans. Now microformats are a way to say i am traveling on such and such airlines and on day on such and such a flight going from here to there at such and such a time, and have a computer read it and understand the informations provided and make it able to answer questions about who is traveling and when and where they are going and when they are going to getting there.

Those smart IT guys are developing ways to query this information using sparql and find out all kinds of things that they could not have gotten from old fashion web pages without a human reading the information and answering the questions.

There many other things that can be encoded in using Microformats. Calender information, your personal contact information, and your resume even, are all able to formated into the new microformats. These are just a few of the things more and more types of information is going to be able to microformated in the near future.

Foaf, an idea whos time has come.

April 27, 2008

I am very excited about Foaf. Foaf is a technology that has been around awhile but i think its time has come. More and more websites are adopting Foaf. Foaf allows you to list information about yourself and your friends in a way that is both human readable and machine readable. So you say what is so important about being machine readable. Ok, that is a fair question. How many times have you joined another social website and had to tell it all over again who your friends are, when they are already listed in the last half a dozen social sites you have joined.  Well Foaf solves that problem. Write your foaf file once and if the new site can read the foaf format it can add your information and your friend’s information to your new social web site automatically.

There are issues around foaf file’s that still need to be solved like privacy and security. But it seems to me that these issues are finally being addressed and hopefully will be solved in the very near future. Some real smart people are looking into this problem and are coming up with some pretty cool ideas about how to solve them.

Openid, the newest lastest idea.

April 27, 2008

I am very excited about Openid. Openid appears to me to solve some real world problems. I am really tired of having hundreds of login usernames and passwords. Openid solves this problem big time. I have one username and one password that can be used at literally thousands of Web sites all over the web. The problem is not all of the sites i currently use accept openid. Hopefully that will change in the near future. More and more places on the web are issuing openid’s, the newest and latest one and one of the biggest is Yahoo. AOL is another big name that has also come on board as a issuer of Openid’s. Now all we need is for more of the everyday websites to start accepting openid. There is hope I wont forget all of those different login username and passwords by the time they all start accepting openid’s.

Hello world!

January 23, 2008

Welcome to Robert Mark White’s WordPress.com Blog. This is my first post.

I will be blogging on a wide range of topics that interest me. I am interested in US Politics. I am also interested in Personal Identity on the Internet, Personal security, PC security, Social networking, Encryption, Personal Anonymity, Privacy, and Portability of your data among other things.