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Thought for today

President Bush has asked that the Senate conduct hearings in a fair and timely manner concerning the confirmation of Judge John Roberts.

Given our nation's concern about not allowing extremists new opportunities to damage our country, I hope that Judge Roberts' hearings are as fair and timely as the hearings of those detained at Guantanamo Bay.

Updating CivicSpace Sites

When my wife ran for State Representative, I set up a domain, where I could easily host many CivicSpace sites. Over time, it has gone from a handful of sites, mostly in Drupal 4.4 running on a couple different Windows 2000 servers with IIS in peoples houses to over three dozen sites running a collection of versions of CivicSpace on a resellers account at a reliable hosting service.

Part of my approach has been to use a shared directory for the files and a shared database. The shared database is accomplished using the db_prefix variable for CivicSpace. As a general rule, I set up one database for each shared directory. For example, I had one database for version for CivicSpace, another for CivicSpace, a third for CivicSpace 0.8.1 and then a few special databases. Each site was then set up with its own section for its files, including files for theme_editor. As a general rule, each site uses the box_grey theme, customized through theme_editor.

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I received a private message on Omidyar about Niger and wrote the following blog post over on the DeStefano Blog

I joined the DeStefano campaign because I wanted to find ways to help make our state and our world a better place. My job is to help people learn why Mayor DeStefano should be the next Governor of Connecticut. It is to help people become more involved in working together to elect Mayor DeStefano Governor and thereby help make our state a better place.

This evening, however, I am struck by news I am hearing from Niger. No, I am not talking about Yellow Uranium and whether or not people in Washington have abused power to destroy their critics, I am talking about drought and famine in Niger. Read the CNN article or the BBC article.

So, for those of you who want raw meat of insider politics in Connecticut, I apologize, this post is about the broader aspects of being part of a caring community that is concerned not only for our state, but also for people around the world who do not have enough to eat. Please, do what you can to help.

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Participatory Politics

(Originally published at Greater Democracy)

I slept last night in a good hotel

I went shopping today for jewels

Thus starts Joni Mitchell’s song, For Free. She goes on to contrast this experience with a street musician,

Across the street he stood

And he played real good

On his clarinet, for free

As I drove off to work on the DeStefano campaign, I heard news about a gubernatorial candidate in neighboring New York State. Eliot Spitzer announced today that Sony/BMG has “agreed today to stop providing lavish gifts, free trips and other giveaways in exchange for airtime for its artists on radio stations” according to a New York Times article.

All of this provided an interesting contrast to Falcon Ridge, a folk music festival I attend every summer. Some of my favorite musicians perform there regularly, such as The Kennedys. They present the other side of the musical equation. Sony/BMG may have to pay millions to get people to listen to J. Lo, but people who love music make pilgrimages to camp out in the hot sun to listen to groups like The Kennedys.

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