Tuesday, February 10, 2009

We Pray

We pray people come to their senses before they pass this pork bloated horrid spending bill. Government spending helps little, private sector spending brings good jobs and employment. This bill will not bring us jobs or the desired effect to improve jobs or liquidity. Elections have consequential outcomes.

It is a bad bill and it needs to start over, but that will not happen. Nancy and Harry will not let their egos allow that. This will lay on the backs of our children if we do not do something. Steve Forbes keeps pointing out, change the market to market guidelines. That will quickly open up cash flow. Pass a bill full of direct tax relief to people and small businesses. They will spend it, at some point people need new cars and new appliances. Jobs will follow.

The money flow issue was not addressed today with enough detail. Lets face it they really do not know what to do. They need to look at history, JFK, 1960 big problems in the economy. Huge tax relief, things got much better. RR, early 80s after Jimmy Carter the worse president we have ever had left us with high 10%+ unemployment, double digit interest rates and a economy as bad if not worse that what we now face. Solution tax cuts.

Roosevelt tried government spending, WPA, etc. They did little to bring the economy out of the depression. WWII did that will all the jobs and allied counties coming together in a time of war. Japan spent 10 years in the 90s trying the same. Did not work, till it let the markets open. I pray we do not fall victum to history.

Monday, February 9, 2009

UK New Rules

Clock ticking on copyright

The government's call for views on the future of copyright has been given a cautious welcome. But, Olivier Laurent reports, it's imperative you have your say

UK photographers could see the first major revamp of copyright law since 1988 after the Intellectual Property Office launched a consultation on the future shape of copyright late last month, including new focus on orphan works.

On 16 December 2008, the IPO, under the remit of David Lammy, minister for higher education and intellectual property, released an 'Issues Paper' to help kick-start the debate about what needs to be done to ensure that 'the country's copyright system properly supports creativity, promotes investment and jobs, while inspiring the confidence of businesses and of users'.

While the consultation encompasses all sectors of the creative industry - with a particular emphasis on the music business - photographers have been urged by representing associations to make their voices heard in a bid to shape any changes that could come as a result of the consultation period.

Already, the Association of Photographers, the British Association of Picture Libraries and Agencies and the National Union of Journalists have announced that they will participate in the consultation.

Gwen Thomas, AOP's company secretary, says: 'We're looking at what difference it is going to make, but it's nice to see that the minister of higher education is interested in the issue.'

'The existing copyright legislation is based on an act that is 20 years old,' says Paul Broan, chairman of BAPLA. 'New methods for delivering stills to the public and for commercial use have developed so fast that legislation has simply not been able to keep up. It is encouraging to see a pro-active response to early European discussions, so that the UK can lead this initiative and shape European policy in a way that is relevant to UK rights-holders.'

The NUJ is also discussing its response, with a sub-committee of photographers meeting this week to discuss the issue.

The consultation period runs until February, after which the IPO will release a discussion paper - or Green Paper - that will become the basis of an official government consultation period. 'Based on that second phase of consultation, we will publish our recommendation in late spring,' an IPO spokesman tells BJP. 'This piece of work looks to ascertain where the UK is and where we should be in terms of copyright internationally,' he adds.

The IPO has asked a series of questions to the creative industry regarding the state of copyright in a digitalised world, with an emphasis on orphan works.

Freelance photographer Pete Jenkins, who will help formulate the NUJ's response, says that one problem is that 'members of the public, as well as organisations, are downloading images and publishing them without compensation through ignorance of the law.

'The absolute right to be recognised as the creator of a published work and the easy and affordable enforcement of that right will start to stop such practices and begin to ensure that creators are always paid for uses of published works,' he adds. 'There does need to be an easy to use and to enforce way for lone traders to obtain not only the payment of licenses fees but also an element of payment of damages to make unlawful use less attractive to would-be pirates.'

Legal enforcement of copyright infringement has proven to be a huge issue, especially for freelance photographers and small businesses. 'Even when piracy is traced and a conviction in the civil courts obtained, there is little chance of any recompense for the misuse, and indeed it is often difficult to obtain even the appropriate fee that could have been negotiated legally,' says Jenkins.

The numbers of copyright infringements cases could increase exponentially in the years to come if the US passes an orphan works bill that would make it easier for publishers to use works of art for which the author or copyright owner cannot easily be traced.

Photographers also fear that the IPO's consultation could form the basis of a European-wide orphan work bill that would threaten their rights. Already, the UK Gowers Review, unveiled in 2007, recommenced adopting a similar policy to the US, namely that works can be used if the copyright owner cannot be found after a 'reasonable search'.

BJP will continue to monitor the situation, publishing its own answer to the paper before the end of February. For more details, visit bjp-online.com.

In essence

The Intellectual Property Office's Issues Paper calls on the creative industry to debate four areas:

1. Access to work. Is the current system too complex, in particular in relation to the licensing of rights, rights clearance and copyright exceptions?

2. Incentivising investment and creativity. Does the current copyright system provide the right incentives to sustain investment and support creativity?

3. Recognising creative input. Does the current system provide the right balance between commercial certainty and the rights of creators?

4. Authenticating work. What action, if any, is needed to address issues related to authentication?

The Issues Paper is available on Intellectual Property Office's website at www.ipo.gov.uk.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Tealtown - Winter 2009

Well this morning I was getting my son up so he could go to practice at school. He looked out the window and asked me how he was going to get out of the drive way. Puzzled I looked out the window to see my car that was parked in the drive way had slide down about 50' nearly into the road. The ice and frozen over night and early morning thaw made is slippery enough for the car to start down the slope on it's own. I guess salting the end of the driveway was a good idea or the car would have ended up in the road. This week end is going to be warm and by end most of the snow and ice will have melted. Now we will be dealing with mud for a few days as the ground will be soft and wet and a total mess. Oh the joys of winter in the Ohio Valley.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Games - Winter 2009

In the basement with Ty and Max on a winter's evening. The game was over and Mother had left, I think she won. The past couple weeks have been brutal weather, -6F this morning when I left for work. The boys had a 2 hour delay for school, I was jealous.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Winter of 2009 - Vote Denied

Well the weather liars got the forecast wrong and instead of a dusting to a inch of snow, we got 8" all during the rush hour. It took me over 2+ hours to get home last night in white out conditions. I was wanting to get home to vote on a local bond issue and did not think I would make it, but I got in the door before 7:30. I was told I was to late. The law is you have to be there in the door before 7:30 but the poll workers wanted to get home and started to close up the polling places before 7:30. I told them I wanted to vote, I was told they were closed. I should have called the board of elections right then, but I was so tired and frustrated I just went home. I called Judy at the board and lodged a complaint but by then my only option was to drive to Batavia and vote. Not something I wanted to do in bumper to bumper traffic. She said they should have called her and asked and it was not right what happened, she was nice as could be, and will tell the poll workers how they had failed to perform their duties that snowy day. I know working the voting poll locations is a thankless job, my Mother did it for well over 30 years. I guess we chalk it up to "White Death Syndrome" ... so it goes.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Perintown Ohio - U.S. 50

Back in 1880 or so the town was one of the biggest cities in the area with a large population and busy industry. It was a major producer of yeast, flower, lumber and spirits. The town had it's own rail station and was a stop for many people heading east from Cincinnati on stage coaches before the trains. This is one of the last old house left from that era in the town and I fear it will soon be torn down. So I ventured out one morning and captured a few pictures of it in the morning fog.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Winter of 2009 - Ohio Valley

We got more snow last night and ice is still coating everything. The drive to work was worse yesterday than Tues or Wed. I am sure today is going to be a joy, people can get nutty in snow around here. The grocery stores are empty or low on some products since the trucks can not get to them. We got about 12-15" of snow and freezing rain coating the house, trees, roads just about everything. Many people have lost power and crews are in town from the south helping to get the grid back and all connected. The family have been off school all week except Monday, they are out of snow days so they will have to go extra days in June to make it up. Ty is not concerned, he will be graduated and they are exempt. These are just a few pictures I have taken since Tuesday, more coming as is the snow today and tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Ice Not So Nice - Winter 2009

Like most of the country we got a lot of snow, followed by sleet and ice rain. Then rain, that froze when the snow re-started. A winter *ucking wonderland. It will be going down into the lower teens tonight so all of this will be rock hard by morning. Salt does not work below 19F other than traction.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Hawaii Cruising, - NCL Pride of Hawaii

Cruising into Maui on the good ship Pride of Hawaii. I took some pictures early in the morning as the ship was coming into the harbor. Was a perfect morning in Hawaii, like all days seem to be. At least when we cruised the islands. Still waiting to hear when and where we are headed to on vacation. I have to find out from Martha what she has planned. Got to get pass ports updated and be ready for any where. Or could stay domestic, we will see what happens.

This vacation was nice, the ship was a bit crowed do to the 4th of the July week end. It was a huge ship. Free style cruising which I liked, others did not like the set up or service. I think the ship was moved to the med and had a total redo. We prefer smaller cruise ship like Celebrity's Mercury Cruise Liner. The foggy area is in the Ioa Valley on a 4th of July. Very cool place to see, the green color is excellent with the flowing streams.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Savanna Park

On a summer trip we stopped in Savanna for a day and enjoyed a evening walk around the cemetery and haunted houses of Savanna. At one stop I spotted a fellow relaxing on a park bench, I liked his relaxed smile so I captured it and him.

The guy was likely half lite but seemed to enjoy life, what more can you ask for. He seemed to be stress free and not wanting for anything. People might think of him as a bum, it is all in what people seek out in life and what makes you happy. Some people need a lot more things and or attention than other people. Some are happy to enjoy a day in the park sitting on a bench.