Good Riddance To Bad Rubbish

Sen. Fritz Hollings (D-Disney) is finally retiring from the Senate after nearly 40 years in office. Hollings has become known for his slavish devoting to his big-media campaign donors, which has meant that Hollings has been on the wrong side of every digital rights issue from the DMCA to filesharing. Thanks to Sen. Hollings, we have the Sonny Bono Copyright Extensions Act, the DMCA, and other restrictions on fair use and public domain rights.

Perhaps Sen. Hollings can be replaced by Mickey Mouse. I’m sure most people would scarcely be able to tell the difference between the two.

8 thoughts on “Good Riddance To Bad Rubbish

  1. The loss of Fritz Hollings officially puts “the Old South” to bed. The GOP thought they could take him out in 1998, which he said at the time would most likely be his final term. Luckily they failed, but winning that seat back will be next to impossible in what’s become one of the nation’s most Republican states, especially since South Carolinians will be tripping over themselves in their race to the polls to re-elect Bush.

    Zell Miller’s retirement is highly likely to put Georgia into the GOP Senate column as well, and John Edwards probably has as much chance of beating Bush for President next November as he does hanging on to his North Carolina Senate seat. Meanwhile, Peter Fitzgerald of Illinois is giving up what is very likely to be a Democrat turnover and moderate Northern Republicans Lincoln Chafee and Olympia Snowe, along with John McCain, could easily switch parties in response to the GOP’s increasingly dissent-intolerant nature. I’m surprised Chafee hasn’t switched already as frustrated as he seems with the party that keeps viciously flogging him.

    All in all, we’re shaping up to revert back to the Union versus the Confederacy in American politics, simply with reversed party roles.

  2. Looking at the maps of recent election results, it’s more a divide of the Northeast, the west, and urban centers versus the rest of the nation. A moderate Democrat could win in the South, but the chances of a moderate Democrat coming to the front of the pack seems less and less likely as the radical left takes the reign of the Democratic Party to the horror of Democratic moderates in the DLC.

  3. By “recent election results,” you are mainly referring to the 2000 Presidency race, which I don’t believe to be representative of the country’s overall tendencies. Gore was trounced in rural counties across the nation, even in Minnesota where he only won 17 of Minnesota’s 87 counties. By contrast, Walter Mondale won 37 counties, Buck Humphrey won 38, Carol Johnson won 46 and Mike Hatch won 74. The same was true in other races across the country, although the rural vote is definitely trending hard-core GOP in the South.

    Even with a “cities-and-inner-core-suburbs-only” base, Gore was still able to win the popular vote and 267 electoral votes in 2000, the ugliest year in rural America for Democrats in at least a generation. In other words, the Dems’ Northeast and Left Coast base along with only a handful of Middle American states are all they need to win. Both Illinois and Iowa are growing more Democratic all the time, Michigan seems to be trending more Democrat than Republican, and while Minnesota and Wisconsin are far more in play for the GOP than they ever were before, the strength of the Dem base in those states is so strong that it will still take a near-perfect scenario for the GOP to win an election. And I wouldn’t count on working-class Ohio and West Virginia to be sure bets for the GOP either, despite their support of Bush in 2000. Bottom line: a credible Dem candidate doesn’t need to engage in too much heavy lifting to get to 270 electoral votes…especially as the Republican Party establishes itself as the party of Dixie.

    Where we disagree the other direction is on the South. No matter how conservative the Democrat is, he or she would have no chance of winning the South, particularly in Presidential races but increasingly in Congressional elections as well. Arkansas, Florida and maybe Louisiana are the only Southern states where the Dems have the slightest prayer of being elected given the lunatic bible-banging fringe that dominates the Dixie electorate, which has only intensified post 9-11.

  4. Finally something we can agree on, Jay. See ya, Fritz! Don’t let the Congressional Seal whack you in the ass on the way out.

  5. Sorry, I’m too close to computers to forgive outrages like the Hollings Bill.

    I love freedom, but Hollings has consistently been a foe to the kind of intellectual freedom and fair use provisions that make true academic freedom possible.

    If he’s the best out of the South then I wish they had won the civil war.

  6. Remember, copyright isn’t an inherent ownership of your ideas. (You can’t own an idea except by never telling it to anyone.) All ideas are owned by the public. But the public, in order to promote a “marketplace of ideas”, grants temporary, exclusive license to the origniator of the idea as a kind of reward.

    But that license must always revert back to the public. Permanent, private ownership of ideas is no good for anybody. Paradoxically Disney, the greatest proponent of continually expanding copyright, made most of their money drawing on ideas and characters from the public domain.

  7. Even with a “cities-and-inner-core-suburbs-only” base, Gore was still able to win the popular vote and 267 electoral votes in 2000, the ugliest year in rural America for Democrats in at least a generation.

    And it’s getting uglier!

    One statistic people keep missing; the “Blue” counties in 2000 are growing by an average rate of maybe 1% annually. The “red” counties are growing by more than triple that rate. The red counties include rural areas, true – but also a lot of the suburbs, full of people fleeing inner-city statism and plenty willing to vote Republican (they’re the engine of the GOP takeover in Minnesota – a phrase that practically violates a law of physics).

    This, added to the recent polling that shows Democrats are losing numbers among new voters and Bush’s durable popularity (against a full court media press) tells me that 2000 may have been a high water year for the Democrats, ESPECIALLY given that the Clinton/Gore years were ones in which the relatively moderate, comparatively responsible, sorta-semi mainstream DLC philosophy was ascendant.

    An Algore trying to run as the second coming of Bill, vs. a Howard “McGovern II” Dean? No real comparison.

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