Gongol.com Archives: February 2011
Brian Gongol


February 16, 2011

The United States of America When considering the "original intent" of the Constitution, remember...
Our third Vice President shot our first Treasury Secretary. There's altogether too much lip service paid to the Founding Fathers, as though they were deities who could do no wrong as they walked our humble Earth. The truth of the matter is that they were exceptionally smart and thought well ahead of their immediate needs when establishing the United States -- but they also had gotten their first attempt (the Articles of Confederation) awfully wrong, lived in a period when well water wasn't even safe to drink, and still tolerated arcane practices like human slavery and honor duels. Let's not pretend as though everything must be examined precisely through the lenses of what they might have intended -- they were human beings, too, most of whom had far less knowledge of the world than the ordinary college graduate ought to have today, merely by virtue of the fact we've had another 200-odd years of human experience in everything from medicine to physics to law. Respect and admiration are in order, but not mindless reverence. That's why they inserted a provision for amending the Constitution: To clean up their errors.

Computers and the Internet It's like eBay for brides
While international matchmaking services (the proverbial "Russian brides" of the Internet) may be facilitating a real service for a lot of lonely people around the world, there are unfortunately a saddening number of those relationships that end up in the abuse and exploitation of the immigrant women. The importation of women from abroad to marry men in the New World is anything but new -- the French exported "Daughters of the King" in the mid-1600s to help boost the population of Quebec.

Health Life's tougher when you have a working conscience
The latest in a virtually endless parade of shams and scams masquerading as health aids is an overpriced silicone band to be worn as a bracelet. It's clearly quite possible to make a fortune selling overpriced junk to the gullible, but that should be beneath enlightened people -- who should see that exploiting their fellow people is a bad way to go about living.

Business and Finance Howard Buffett's lessons learned from running an international charity
Interesting, once one considers that there are lots of international charities to be found around the world, and that many of them are probably being run by people with little or no experience. The knowledge transfer among such aid groups is probably much less than it ought to be.

Computers and the Internet Why it's so easy to hate Macs
The cult-like nature of the Apple ecosystem is nauseating -- even if the main alternative, Windows, remains clumsier than it should be.

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