Needed: Transparent Government and Transparent Media Coverage of Elections

I am tempted sometimes to wring my hands in despair at the sorry state of the Federal Government, at our $8+ trillion national debt, at our incredibly low popularity ratings around the world, even from our allies, at our lack of global competitiveness in some key industries, of our economic slowdown, and most of all, at the incredibly biased and inane media coverage of politics and elections.

Three Top Presidential Candidates Don’t Actually Live in the United States (Source: HowManyOfMe.com)

Interesting that after my last post on how names affect your ability to standout online, I noticed a post by Phil Windley, the man who inspired me to blog, about HowManyOfMe.com, a web site that uses census data to estimate the number of people living in the United States that have the same name as you.

For Phil Windley, the answer is 3.
For me, Paul Allen, the answer is 2,838.
For my hypothetical John Smith, the answer is 49,535.

Why I Support Mitt Romney for President

This morning Mitt Romney announced his 2008 presidential bid in Michigan. His theme is innovation and transformation. Here is the full text of Romney\’s speech from the NY Times.

I\’m excited by Mitt\’s candidancy and want to publicly declare my support for him. My blog is not a political blog by any means, but it is a personal one, and occasionally I like to express my personal opinions on a variety of topics, not just entrepreneurship.

I like many other candidates as well. Who isn\’t fond of Rudy Giuliani for his amazing leadership in the wake of the 9/11 attack? My family will always be grateful to him for his strength and grace. He is a great leader. I\’m also very fond of Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas. I appreciate his social conservatism and his optimism for the future. I love his concept of horizontal and not vertical politics.

Search U.S. Patents With New Google Patent Search

For nearly 20 years I\’ve dreamed of an easy to use search engine that would index all US Patents and make it easy for any inventor or entrepreneur to do sophisticated patent research.

As an employee of Folio Corporation in the late 1980s, my job was to index huge data collections, such as AICPA content, all the IRS publications, and the US Code for our reference publishers who licensed our search engine technology. We looked at patent data several times, but it was never a project that actually got a sponsor.

New Jersey Backing Up Angel Investors

New Jersey has a new economic development program that guarantees up to 1/3 of the investments made by angel investors in startup companies. More details here. Members of the Jumpstart angel investing network (a pretty forward looking group) are the first to receive this government guarantee, for a $285,000 investment in software company Knowtions. Interesting concept.

Senator Clinton Hires Experienced BLogger

The New York Times reports that Senator Clinton\’s campaign has hired an experienced political blogger. The 2008 Presidential Election is going to heat up the blogosphere in the next two years. But I\’m really afraid most of the candidates won\’t actually do it right. I\’m afraid they\’ll try to use the web as a top-down communication tool, and not a giant listening device and organizing device that actually empowers citizens to be involved in government.