Are bloggers the same as journalists?
And if not, what is the dividing line? It seems that a blogger from Oregon has just been hit with a $2.5M fine for defamation because of a blog post that cited an anonymous source for her assertions. The full story is located on Mashable, but the short story is that, in the Judges’ mind she was not allowed to use the same protections with respect to anonymous sources as “real journalists”. Not sure where I stand on this specific case but, prior litigation has trended in the opposite direction. With the growing number of bloggers — not to mention “citizen reporters” — in this country, it seems to me we had better get this straightened out forthwith. I see this issue eventually ending up with the Supreme Court.
Is the Economy Turning Around?
I’ve been driving about town the past few evenings and it appears to me that the number of homes displaying Christmas lights is greater than it has been in the last several years. Not only that, but the displays appear to be larger this year. We even added a few strings to our usual 10,000+ light exhibit (still not visible from space, unfortunately). Could this be a barometer for future economic activity as it reflects subconscious improvement in customer sentiment? (The fact that purchase activity was higher than expected on Black Friday and Cyber Monday seems to support the idea the economy may be turning for the better – completely in-line with my observation.) I think I’ll purpose to The Conference Board that they examine my “Noel Luminosity Indicator” for consideration to be included as one of their Leading Economic Index variables – should stand right up there with M2 and ISM Index.
In all seriousness, despite the good news on early holiday sales, improved unemployment figures, the major indexes on Wall Street being up the last week (and, of course, the year-over-year improvement in “Noel Luminosity”), I am still pessimistic about the economy. Lack of definitive action in the Eurozone, anemic GDP Growth and gridlock in D.C. (which will only get worse as the election approaches) and I am having dreams about Herbert Hoover and 1931. We already had a Stock market crash akin to 1929; will history continue to repeat itself?
Alien Space Ship Sited: Video Evidence from camera onboard NASA’s STEREO spacecraft confirms
Sadly, we have bigger things to worry about than the economy. A camera aboard NASA’s STEREO spacecraft picked up the image of a huge UFO shadowing the planet Mercury. The massive object was revealed to the camera’s eye when it was struck by a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) from the sun. While I have not bothered to contact NASA for comment, (because I am sure they’d just cover it up – I used to watch the X-files, I’m no idiot when it comes to cover-ups), an obvious expert on the subject of UFOs code-named “SiniXster” has posted the video on YouTube (complete with erudite commentary). To quote, “It definitely looks like a ship to me and very obviously it’s cloaked”.
I highly recommend you view the video for yourself – apparently the Klingons have invaded our solar system.