Golden States

Oregon appears to be having something of a gold rush thanks to a moratorium on suction dredges in California. The cyclical nature of mining rushes for gold as well as the repercussions of this sort of mining certainly deserve greater scrutiny. It also poses an interesting problem for public land use as different interpretations of “the fat of the land” begins to contradict each other.” The “American Dream” is alive and well in the retirement dreams of people going out and mining for gold as well as the sense, as is mentioned in the article’s closing lines, that it takes more than opportunity to strike it rich. The popularity of this sort of mining is intricately tied to the price of gold, which is itself tied to the economy. The x factors here would seem to be the perennial hope of striking out on one’s own to get rich and the desperation involved when there’s not other hope to pay the bills.

Another round of copyright wars?

News from the New York Times that publishers are looking into ebook editions for classics that don’t have their electronic copyrights nailed down. Despite being a Kindle owner, I’m a little concerned about the direction this will likely go. There’s already enough problems with copyright and electronic distribution. The most obvious being the “planned obsolescence” or at least inherent obsolescence that’s inherent in technology being applied to books (not a new move if you’ve know anything about book binding. You’re latest paperback? Yeah, it’s a piece of crap.) Still, another front in a war to nail down every right for every property. Then again, maybe I’m just being grumpy today and not seeing the bright side of all this.