Saturday, October 01, 2005

Who Should Be Involved In Policy Making

Town Meeting Replaced by Chat Room Poses Threat

  • Nothing poses a bigger challenge to democracy that e-mail communications, especially e-mail lists that circulate and discuss leglislation. The town meeting, once public, and requiring one identify oneself when making statements, has been replaced by a more sinister "secret" meeting, or should I call it "chat room." Various techniques are used to manipulate who is and is not included, and, in general, access to this form of "government" is limited by limited, or limiting income.
  • Seniors and persons with disabilities, living on extreem limited fixed income, are usually priced out of this form of government access, they are not included in the conversation. Low income workers, single parents, and of course, the homeless are also left behind as this form os "sharing" information at the policy making level. The fact is that if fees for service is the requirement for inclusion, half of Americans will be left out of the national, State, County and Local conversation!!!
  • The solution to this will not be easy to imagine, as it is not only an old dog computer that allowes dial up, or access to the library, for 1/2 hour per week, that is necessary to "be involved." One idea that has been floated, and not to solve the problem of who will be included, is blanklet Wi-Fi. Once again, how will we include those who cannot afford to be connected? Google, has an idea, and the decision that will be made in San Fransico will reverberrate from sea to sea.


At Saturday, October 08, 2005 7:21:00 PM, Blogger imfunnytoo said...

Free or inexpensive WiFi...a good thing! One wonders if the outccomes in Katrina or Rita would have been altered if some of the stranded evacuees had access to WiFi.


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