donnyshaw’s Actions

 
Subscribe

donnyshaw’s Letters to Congress

donnyshaw’s Comments

donnyshaw 10/08/2008 12:31pm

Hi Everyone, Yes, the new red flags can be used to mark abusive comments for admin review and possible deletion. I wanted to be clear on what we will be considering abusive, so I published a comment policy on our blog. Please have a look and let me know in the comments on that post if you think they will be workable guidelines:

http://www.opencongress.org/articles/view/713-Comment-Policy

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 10/03/2008 11:47am

Great catch. You are correct.. I meant to refer to Rep. Robin Hayes (R-NC), not Rep. Bean.

I have corrected the post.

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 10/03/2008 11:04am

Taxpayers for Common Sense say all the extra, unrelated tax breaks will total $110 billion.

http://tinyurl.com/533hgd

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 09/29/2008 4:13pm

Sec. 115. Graduated Authorization to Purchase:

http://publicmarkup.org/bill/emergency-economic-stabilization-act-2008/1/115/

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 09/28/2008 11:56am

Voting data is up now. Click “see full voting history” on the main bill tab.

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 09/09/2008 7:26am

Hey RDFrench,

Thanks for letting us use your photo with the Creative Commons license. Besides the value of shared content, I love how the CC license tends to connect people who are sharing ideas, information and art in non-commercial settings.

Glad you found this post and were able to give us your inside perspective on the current funding situation for environmental education programs.

Best of luck!

donnyshaw 08/12/2008 10:51am

Hey jsgarvin,

Sorry if I wasn’t clear on this. The $15,000 threshold is for candidates running for a seat in Congress. Under, Congress’ ethics bill, the $15,000 threshold applies to lobbyists giving bundled funds to any federal candidate or officeholder, leadership PAC, or political party, which includes presidential candidates. Obama’s bill creates a new, higher threshold for presidential candidates.

Here’s how it’s stated in the bill summary:

“Increases the applicable threshold triggering such reporting requirement from $15,000 (currently applicable to any authorized committee of a candidate, a leadership PAC, or a political party committee) to $50,000 in the case of a presidential candidate committee.”

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 07/27/2008 3:25pm

That’s Harry Reid at a press conference on the bill after the Senate passed it yesterday.

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 07/24/2008 11:46am

In case anyone’s interested, here’s Picken’s website for his plan:

http://www.pickensplan.com/theplan/

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 07/22/2008 12:21pm

It’s in there. See the link I posted above in the update.

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 07/21/2008 12:33pm

I haven’t seen any specific mention of this in relation to the omnibus, but Coburn is guessing it will contain “over 100” bills, so I wouldn’t be surprised if this is included.

http://www.opencongress.org/bill/110-s1738/show

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 07/21/2008 12:21pm

The Senatus blog posted some info on a letter Corbun sent to Reid today RE: the omnibus.

http://senatus.wordpress.com/2008/07/21/coburn-omnibus-bill-update-letter-to-reid-possible-agreements/

Coburn writes:

“The omnibus is likely to cost around $25 billion when the costs of all of the bills are added together. I would request an expedited Congressional Budget Office analysis and score be made available to all Senators prior to the omnibus’ floor consideration.”

Of course, it’s still in development, so this is a very rough guess.

Also, on your second point about the floor debate, check out the potential agreements Coburn offers for how it could be conducted.

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 07/17/2008 12:52pm

Yup, here it is:

http://www.opencongress.org/bill/110-hr1345/show

donnyshaw 07/14/2008 12:37pm

Check out these awesome flow charts explaining how this bill changes the old FISA law:

http://tinyurl.com/6s4go4

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 07/10/2008 9:15pm

Not yet. I’ll post it to this blog once it has been given an official number.

donnyshaw 07/09/2008 11:07am

My local free weekly, the Valley Advocate, reported this week that Rep. Barney Frank has changed his mind and is withdrawing his support of this bill. He is an official co-spnosor, and is no doubt changing his mind because of the public’s vocal opposition to the bill. Always good to see a Congressmen engaged at this level.

http://www.valleyadvocate.com/article.cfm?aid=7937

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 06/25/2008 8:29pm

Bryan Rasmussen at O’Reilly News did exactly this. Check it out:

http://www.opencongress.org/articles/view/535-Congress-in-a-Wordle

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 06/24/2008 4:01pm

We’re going to make this a possibility soon. I’ll announce in this space and on the OpenCongress blog when it’s ready to go.

donnyshaw 06/23/2008 5:11am

Kevin Drum has a great post looking at parts of this bill other than the much-discussed telecom immunity provision. The bill will allow the NSA to engage in wholesale data monitoring of communications that sometimes involve U.S. persons. It’s a process based on a software algorithm, and he raises important questions about how oversight of a complex program like this is conducted.

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2008_06/013956.php

“The oversight on this stuff is inherently weak. After all, no court can seriously evaluate algorithms like this and neither can Congress. They don’t have the technical chops. Do the algorithms use ethnic background as one of their parameters? Membership in suspect organizations? Associations with foreigners? Residence in specific neighborhoods? Nobody knows, and no layman can know, because these things most likely emerge from other parameters rather than being used as direct inputs to the algorithm.

For all practical purposes, then, the decision about which U.S. citizens to spy on is being vested in a small group of technicians operating in secret and creating criteria that virtually no one else understands. The new bill requires annual review by Inspectors General of the government’s compliance with targeting and minimization procedures, which is better than nothing, but stronger amendments aimed at limiting the targeting of U.S. citizens were specifically rejected."

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 06/20/2008 10:01am

If you click “Login to ‘My OpenCongress’” at the top of any page on OpenCongress, an option for “OpenID login” will appear in a pop-up. Click that link and it will take you to a login screen where you can enter your OpenID name. Let us know if you’re still having trouble getting to that page – writeus at opencongress dot org.

donnyshaw 06/19/2008 10:42am

John Culberson twitters from the House floor:

http://twitter.com/johnculberson

donnyshaw 06/14/2008 2:26pm

Noticed this op-ed in the NYTimes – seems relevant to some of the discussions taking place on this page:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/14/opinion/14herbert.html?_r=1&ref=opinion&oref=slogin

Despite the focus on the housing crisis, gasoline prices and the economy in general, the press has not done a good job capturing the intense economic anxiety — and even dread, in some cases — that has gripped tens of millions of working Americans, including many who consider themselves solidly middle class.

Working families are not just changing their travel plans and tightening up on purchases at the mall. There is real fear and a great deal of suffering out there.

A man who described himself as a conscientious worker who has always pinched his pennies wrote the following to Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont:

“This winter, after keeping the heat just high enough to keep my pipes from bursting (the bedrooms are not heated and never got above 30 degrees) I began selling off my woodworking tools, snowblower, (pennies on the dollar) and furniture that had been handed down in my family from the early 1800s, just to keep the heat on.

“Today I am sad, broken, and very discouraged. I am thankful that the winter cold is behind us for a while, but now gas prices are rising yet again. I just can’t keep up.”

The people we have heard the least from in this epic campaign season have been the voters — ordinary Americans. We get plenty of polling data and alleged trends, but we don’t hear the voices of real people.

donnyshaw 06/12/2008 2:03pm
(a) Regulation Required- Within one year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Federal Communications Commission shall prescribe pursuant to the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 151 et seq.) a regulation that provides, in connection with any video programming that is broadcast or that is distributed by any multichannel video programming distributor, that— (1) advertisements accompanying such video programming shall not be excessively noisy or strident; (2) such advertisements shall not be presented at modulation levels substantially higher than the program material that such advertisements accompany; and (3) the average maximum loudness of such advertisements shall not be substantially higher than the average maximum loudness of the program material that such advertisements accompany. (b) Definitions- For purposes of this section, the terms `video programming’ and `multichannel video programming distributor’ have the meanings given such terms in section 602 of Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 522).
Comm_reply
donnyshaw 06/04/2008 3:07pm

Yes, definitely.

donnyshaw 06/04/2008 2:54pm

Just found this report from CBPP explaining that Unemployment Insurance is one of the most effective forms of economic stimulus.

http://www.cbpp.org/11-15-01tax.htm

Excerpt:

The key objective of an economic stimulus is to expand demand for goods and services. The more that any stimulus measure adds to spending, the more effective it will be in short-circuiting the economic slowdown.

Unemployment insurance is a particularly effective stimulus. Not surprisingly, job loss is often associated with a decline in consumption, which then reduces demand for other goods and services as part of a negative cycle of increasing unemployment and declining economic activity. The unemployment insurance program helps to break this negative cycle: By partially compensating for lost income, it lessens the reduction in spending that unemployment can cause.

The crucial role played by unemployment benefits in limiting declines in consumer spending is underscored by recent academic research showing that the amount a family spends on food falls by seven percent, on average, when the head of a household becomes unemployed but would decline by 22 percent in the absence of unemployment benefits.(2) Other research confirms that the unemployment insurance system has been an extremely effective mechanism for stabilizing the economy during a downturn.(3) Both unemployment insurance and the tax system are “automatic stabilizers” — they help to reduce the severity of a recession by automatically supporting spending during a downturn. Recent academic research has shown that, dollar for dollar, the UI system is eight times as effective as the entire tax system in mitigating the impact of a recession.

donnyshaw 05/28/2008 1:24pm

Lawrence Lessig had an op-ed in the NY Times last week about this bill explaining not only why he thinks it’s unfair, but how it could be improved.

Here’s the gist:

“The proposed change is unfair because since 1978, the law has told creators that there was nothing they needed to do to protect their copyright. Many have relied on that promise. Likewise, the change is unfair to foreign copyright holders, who have little notice of arcane changes in Copyright Office procedures, and who will now find their copyrights vulnerable to willful infringement by Americans.

The change is also unwise, because for all this unfairness, it simply wouldn’t do much good. The uncertain standard of the bill doesn’t offer any efficient opportunity for libraries or archives to make older works available, because the cost of a “diligent effort” is not going to be cheap. The only beneficiaries would be the new class of “diligent effort” searchers who would be a drain on library budgets."

For the sake of saving space on the comment board, I’ll paste in the link for you to check out Lessig’s recommendations:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/20/opinion/20lessig.html?scp=1&sq=orphan+works&st=nyt

donnyshaw 05/28/2008 1:24pm

Lawrence Lessig had an op-ed in the NY Times last week about this bill explaining not only why he thinks it’s unfair, but how it could be improved.

Here’s the gist:

“The proposed change is unfair because since 1978, the law has told creators that there was nothing they needed to do to protect their copyright. Many have relied on that promise. Likewise, the change is unfair to foreign copyright holders, who have little notice of arcane changes in Copyright Office procedures, and who will now find their copyrights vulnerable to willful infringement by Americans.

The change is also unwise, because for all this unfairness, it simply wouldn’t do much good. The uncertain standard of the bill doesn’t offer any efficient opportunity for libraries or archives to make older works available, because the cost of a “diligent effort” is not going to be cheap. The only beneficiaries would be the new class of “diligent effort” searchers who would be a drain on library budgets."

For the sake of saving space on the comment board, I’ll paste in the link for you to check out Lessig’s recommendations:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/20/opinion/20lessig.html?scp=1&sq=orphan+works&st=nyt

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 04/28/2008 9:11am

Yeah. The bill would lead to the creation of this website. Actually, there could be several visual registry websites created under the bill. It would put in place a certification process for the Copyright Office to approve commercially produced registries.

A lot of visual artists are worried that it would cost too much money and take too much time to digitize all their work and post it to these sites. They also seem to be worried that people may successfully make a legal argument that looking up a work in the registries constitutes a “diligent search.”

Seems like an issue that could potentially be taken care of in the best search practices that are to be drawn up by the Register of Copyrights. A work does not have to be registered to be copyrighted, and the best practices should reflect this fact.

Here’s Public knowledge’s visual registry proposal (PDF):

http://www.publicknowledge.org/pdf/pk-visualregistry-memo-20070129.pdf

donnyshaw 04/26/2008 3:18pm

There’s simple way to eliminate spam on this site. Just register an account, log in, and click “No” for all comments that you don’t think are useful. Once five people click “No” for a comment, it will be filtered out.

Comm_reply
donnyshaw 04/11/2008 1:49pm

The vote yesterday only affected presidential fast track authority as it relates to the U.S.-Columbia FTA bill. It created an exception exclusively for that bill.


Number of Comments: 211
Average Comment Rating (0-10): 5.16531257052584
Comments Per Day: 0.08

donnyshaw’s Supported Bills

Bill Status Last Action
S.1285 Fair Elections Now Act (110th congress) Introduced Jun 20, 2007
S.223 Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act (110th congress) Introduced Apr 26, 2007
H.R.4936 Antifreeze Bittering Act of 2007 (110th congress) Introduced Jan 16, 2008
H.R.4544 Code Talkers Recognition Act of 2007 (110th congress) Bill Is Law Oct 15, 2008
S.2690 American Braille Flag Memorial Act (110th congress) Introduced Mar 04, 2008
S.2746 OPEN FOIA Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Mar 12, 2008
H.R.3548 Plain Language in Government Communications Act of 2007 (110th congress) House Passed Aug 01, 2008
H.R.5734 Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Apr 09, 2008
H.R.6104 Enhancing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Jun 03, 2008
H.Res.63 Amending the Rules of the House of Representatives to ensure that Members have a reasonable amount of time to read legislation that will be voted upon. (110th congress) Introduced Jan 12, 2007
H.R.6209 Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act (110th congress) Introduced Jun 09, 2008
H.Res.504 Amending the Rules of the House of Representatives to require that legislation and conference reports be available on the Internet for 72 hours before consideration by the House, and for other purposes. (110th congress) Introduced Jun 20, 2007
H.R.6052 Saving Energy Through Public Transportation Act of 2008 (110th congress) House Passed Jun 27, 2008
H.R.3981 Preserve America and Save America's Treasures Act (110th congress) House Passed Jul 09, 2008
H.R.5811 Electronic Communications Preservation Act (110th congress) House Passed Jul 10, 2008
H.R.1254 Presidential Library Donation Reform Act of 2007 (110th congress) House Passed Oct 22, 2007
S.1382 ALS Registry Act (110th congress) Bill Is Law Oct 08, 2008
H.R.4038 For the relief of Adrian Rodriguez. (110th congress) Introduced Oct 31, 2007
H.R.14 Congressional Integrity and Pension Forfeiture Act of 2007 (110th congress) Introduced Jul 31, 2007
S.3077 Strengthening Transparency and Accountability in Federal Spending Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Jun 03, 2008

donnyshaw’s Opposed Bills

Bill Status Last Action
S.2596 Semper Fi Act (110th congress) Introduced Feb 11, 2008
S.3401 Enemy Combatant Detention Review Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Jul 31, 2008
S.3325 The Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights Act of 2008 (110th congress) Bill Is Law Oct 13, 2008
H.R.6975 Jihad Prevention Act (110th congress) Introduced Sep 18, 2008
H.R.1424 Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (110th congress) Bill Is Law Oct 03, 2008
H.R.5191 To prohibit the use of Federal funds to carry out the highway project known as the "Trans-Texas Corridor". (110th congress) Introduced Jan 30, 2008
S.256 Bankruptcy Reform bill (109th congress) Bill Is Law Apr 20, 2005
S.3688 Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Nov 18, 2008
S.3207 Respecting States Rights and Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Jun 26, 2008
H.Res.1258 Impeaching George W. Bush, President of the United States, of high crimes and misdemeanors. (110th congress) Introduced Jun 11, 2008
S.1959 Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007 (110th congress) Introduced Aug 02, 2007
H.R.1955 Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007 (110th congress) House Passed Oct 24, 2007
S.3111 Life at Conception Act (110th congress) Introduced Jun 11, 2008
S.2191 America's Climate Security Act of 2007 (110th congress) Introduced May 20, 2008
H.R.7303 Consumer and Automotive Recovery Act of 2008 (110th congress) Introduced Nov 20, 2008
H.R.4157 Sanctity of Human Life Act (110th congress) Introduced Feb 25, 2008
H.R.25 Fair Tax Act of 2007 (110th congress) Introduced Jan 04, 2007
H.R.3442 Unborn Child Pain Awareness Act of 2007 (110th congress) Introduced Aug 03, 2007
H.Res.5 Adopting rules for the One Hundred Eleventh Congress. (111th congress) House Passed Jan 06, 2009
H.J.Res.15 Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States to authorize the line item veto. (111th congress) Introduced Feb 09, 2009