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Who can use a computer?

Karl Rove apparently said that McCain doesn't use a computer "because his war injuries keep him from being able to use a keyboard. He can't type."

This awesome video shows people with disabilities, including stonebender, using computers, and ends with a pro-Obama message.



( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 16th, 2008 05:40 am (UTC)
Woo hoo!
Oct. 16th, 2008 07:05 am (UTC)
That was awesome. I've been puzzling over the can't use a keyboard excuse since it was said. I mean, if people with quadraplegia can use computers, then a person with a what does he have, 20% range of motion or some such, can find a way to use a computer if they want to.

It would be nice if McCain would just be honest and say that regardless of what assistance may exist for him, he just doesn't have an interest.
Oct. 16th, 2008 08:22 am (UTC)
I love the video, but I don't think being able to use computers is a requirement for being a good political leader.

What is a requirement is having good advisors about the computer industry and computer/network/info security. Because these things affect everyone's lives.

A long time ago before the primaries, I read interviews with all the candidates in I think it was Business Week. The article also listed some of the candidates' top advisors. Obama had a lot of advisors from the computer industry - people I had actually heard of and respected. That was when he began looking interesting to me.
Oct. 16th, 2008 08:58 am (UTC)
I think at this point in time, being personally au courant with something as personally and societally powerful as the Internet -- beyond e-mail pushed to your Blackberry -- is an essential bit of education for someone who will have the power to make and shape policy based on the use of the net as a means of changing our nation and world for the better.

To me this is the 21st century equivalent of GHW Bush being wide-eyed in amazement at a grocery store scanner -- in 1992. I don't want to elect leaders who have less experience with the transformative technology of our time than my six year old child.
Oct. 16th, 2008 09:16 am (UTC)
Actually, I suspect almost anybody old enough to be President has "less experience with the transformative technology of our time" than the average school child.

Not to deny that the President has ultimate authority, but the people who really make policy on a day to day basis are his advisors. In this case, OSTP (the Office of Science and Technology Policy) is the relevant executive branch organization. I'd certainly be concerned if the head of OSTP didn't use computers. I'd also like to see advisors who represent a range of industries (and academia).

I also have this rather frightening vision of McCain discovering, say, World of Warcraft.
Oct. 16th, 2008 10:57 am (UTC)

Actually, that thing about Bush in the supermarket was debunked long, long ago. Like Gore inventing the internet.

And actually, McCain was ahead of the technological curve back in the 2000 election:
"At the same time McCain 2000 was raising the e-political bar, it was making Max Fose a cyberlegend. As the McCain campaign took off in late 1999, Fose's renown began to grow. His daily email "MaxGrams" circulated among a growing list of volunteers and became a welcome and informative bonding agent. For some in the press, his ubiquitous presence raised questions about whether Fose was a real person or some digitally generated political Max Headroom, a disembodied yet personable online construct available via AOL instant messaging anytime, day or night."

And also:
"In certain ways, McCain was a natural Web candidate. Chairman of the Senate Telecommunications Subcommittee and regarded as the U.S. Senate's savviest technologist, McCain is an inveterate devotee of email. His nightly ritual is to read his email together with his wife, Cindy. The injuries he incurred as a Vietnam POW make it painful for McCain to type. Instead, he dictates responses that his wife types on a laptop. "She's a whiz on the keyboard, and I'm so laborious," McCain admits."
Oct. 16th, 2008 04:16 pm (UTC)
That's kind of a sweet image, imagining them in bed together, reading e-mail, and her helping him that way. Won't make me vote for him, but it's sweet.
Oct. 16th, 2008 05:10 pm (UTC)
I knew a quadriplegic who posted on the Internet using a pencil in his mouth to tap the keys.
Oct. 17th, 2008 12:23 am (UTC)
Lots of people find other ways to use computers. He has the money to hire folks to do it for him.
Oct. 17th, 2008 07:02 am (UTC)
Re: Who can use a computer?
it's just a typical rove response -- designed to make us feel sorry for mccain.

i certainly feel sorry that he has war injuries. but of course it's something of a half-truth, too (hey, it's rove -- does he ever open his mouth without scheming?) -- mccain doesn't use a computer because he doesn't want to jump through some extra hoops to use it, because he has people who do anything that needs doing on computers for him. i don't really blame him for that. i just dislike the manipulative half-truth.

does him not liking to use a computer mean he doesn't understand the power of computers, the power of the internet? i don't know. direct experience is good, but not necessary IMO, if one acquires sufficient knowledge in other ways.

i wonder how much he knows about disabilities, too. he sure can't tell autism from down syndrome, which isn't promising.
Oct. 17th, 2008 04:27 pm (UTC)
This is making me worry about my own Luddite tendencies wrt to fax machines and cell phones.

I [heart] my computer, though.
Oct. 17th, 2008 04:30 pm (UTC)
I'm not very conversant with fax machines myself. "What's wrong with a scanner and e-mail?"
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )

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