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Censorship Your Rights Online

Boston Bans Boing Boing From City Wi-Fi 215

DrFlounder writes "The city of Boston has apparently blocked access to Boing Boing on the municipal Wi-Fi. This is possibly due to the popular blog's known Mooninite sympathies." Update: 4/22 13:11 GMT by KD : Seth Finkelstein did some research and posted an explanation of the blockage to his blog. "'Arbitrary and capricious' seems the relevant characterization."
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Boston Bans Boing Boing From City Wi-Fi

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  • Municipal WiFi is bad after all.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:05PM (#18826711)
      There is nothing wrong with this ... except, perhaps, if you hate freedom.

      Do not question the mayor. LED cartoons are terrorist threats and non-sycophantic websites are subversion.
      • by StarvingSE ( 875139 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @07:10PM (#18827221)
        I can understand if a private ISP blocks content, although I don't agree with it. They are a private company and can do things like that, and I can choose not to do business with them. I would rather do without internet access than pay a company to block content.

        In this case, it is a government controlled service, and thus clearly falls under free speech rights. Someone needs to bring the constitutionality of this under question in court.
        • by lysergic.acid ( 845423 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @07:29PM (#18827333) Homepage
          they don't need to make a federal case out of the matter. it's municipal wifi, but municipal government is still answerable to the citizens of boston as we live in a democratic society. they need to write to their city officials or take it to the city council directly with a petition. there should be municipal policies regulating the administration of public wifi access that prevents city officials from employing political censorship. it's the tax payer's wifi system, so ultimately they have control over how it's run.
          • by Zantetsuken ( 935350 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @08:39PM (#18827785) Homepage
            Its been a while since I read on muni-wifi, so I can't exactly remember how it works, but if it's outsourced to a 3rd party company and only paid for by the city govt' - would the 3rd party/private company be able to block it without bringing the Constitution into this, or because it would be funded by govt' money then it would have to comply with the Constitution??? Even if this isn't the case in Boston, if it is so in other places, I would think it would be a valid question...
          • by mi ( 197448 ) <> on Saturday April 21, 2007 @11:04PM (#18828753) Homepage Journal

            is still answerable to the citizens of boston as we live in a democratic society.

            And what if the majority of the citizens of Boston really do hate the blocked site(s)? Then those, who want to access it, are screwed by the same flaw of Democracy, that killed Socrates... And even if citizens of Boston do wise up and force the block to be removed, tell me, what's easier — organize the citizens to protest and petition the government, or switch to a competing service provider?

            Municipal WiFi was and remains a profoundly stupid idea, because it effectively blocks the competition through government subsidy. At least, with roads and other infrastructure it could be argued, that we can't have competing ones simply due to the lack of space (although Tokyo manages to have competing subway lines, somehow). But WiFi networks? Please — can put 10 different access point on the same pole...

            The illiberal Socialist Boston is showing us all the worst of it. The supposed market failure [] was used to justify government's encroaching into an area, where it should not be allowed. You — the fans of "Municipal WiFi" — have made this bed. Now sleep in it.

            • by EugeneK ( 50783 ) on Sunday April 22, 2007 @04:05AM (#18830347) Homepage Journal
              I feel the same way about open standards like TCP/IP, developed at public expense (I never would have consented to my money being wasted in this way). Instead of having a range of innovative, privately-developed protocols and networks (imagine being able to choose MSN's or AOL's innovate networking protocols), we are now forced to use a socialist, inefficient protocol like TCP/IP. It's been pretty much a disaster ever since.
              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by mi ( 197448 )

                BS. Developing standards (TCP/IP, 110V) is completely different from providing services. And you know it.

                "Insightful" my behind — find a better example, or admit, there aren't any.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by StarvingSE ( 875139 )
              Your claim is incorrect because the constitution is designed to reduce these flaws of democracy. For example, even though a tyrannical president could be voted into office, the constitution sets term limits and has 3 branches of government for checks and balances. Because of freedom of religion, the establishment of a state religion wouldn't even be on the voting ballot to begin with.

              Because of this, the citizens of boston cannot vote to ban content due to the first amendment. The constitution protects t
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Urza9814 ( 883915 )
          No, the local governments grant the ISPs a monopoly usually, so they should be held to the same standards as a government service would be. I dunno where you live, but where I am, we have one choice for broadband and one choice only. And lemme tell ya, it sucks. I recently discovered they charge an extra $60 a month for the EXACT same service, just without the 'you are not allowed to run a server' clause in the TOS. But yea, unless I want dial-up, that's my only option.
        • by rednip ( 186217 ) *

          I can understand if a private ISP blocks content, although I don't agree with it. They are a private company and can do things like that...

          Agreed, with one caveat, they should lose their 'common carrier' protection and be responsible for all content which flows through their network.

        • who said anything about federal? I'm pretty sure the Massachusetts constitution protects free speech as well.
        • by asninn ( 1071320 ) on Sunday April 22, 2007 @04:34AM (#18830431)
          Would you be OK with the postal services opening your mail and refusing to carry them if they didn't like their contents, or your phone company listening in to your calls and disconnecting you and/or refusing to allow you to call the same number again in the future based on what you're talking about?

          What if those decisions are done by automated systems rather than humans - would you feel better because you knew that no actual person was reading your mail and listening to your phone calls?

          You might still say "they're free to do it, and I'm free to take my business elsewhere", but what if everyone does it, and if you had no other choice but to agree to it if you want to be able to send letters or call people on the phone? You might say "I'm gonna encrypt my letters and scramble my phone calls", but what if your postal services company and telco decided that that was against their ToS? Would you still say "I'll just take my business elsewhere"? And again, what if everyone did it and you COULDN'T take your business elsewhere?

          Your rights are only worth anything as long as they are actually protected, and that includes protection against non-government entities as well. And while you may argue that forbidding these kinds of things would impinge on the companies' freedom to conduct their business the way they want to, also do keep in mind that non-interference is an essential counterpart to freedom - your right to swing your fist ends where my face starts, and arguably, the same thing applies here.

          As long as you just stand somewhere swinging your fist, it may make some sense to say that I simply shouldn't go near you in order to avoid being hit, but if you deduce from that that you're always free to swing your fist, then do consider a situation where I'm in a group of people who're all swinging their fists, with nowhere left to go. Is it my fault then that I get beaten up?

          So, yeah, I agree that it does fall under free speech rights, but I also think that saying "if it were a private company, nothing would be wrong with it" is fallacious.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by yesteraeon ( 872571 )

        There is nothing wrong with this ... except, perhaps, if you hate freedom.
        I think you might have misspelled love, 'cause I hate freedom and I think this is best thing since Guantanamo Bay!
    • They just slow or block access to their competitors or anybody that they think that they fleece money out of. As to this issue, it will straighten out within a week or less.
    • by Paladin144 ( 676391 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:12PM (#18826777) Homepage
      Municipal WiFi is bad after all.

      At least the people of Boston have a chance to throw the bums out in the next election. If you're encountering censorship by a cable company given a legal monopoly to "serve" a certain region, you have virtually no recourse unless such a thing was specifically planned for and written into the contract. I know that my city has no control over my cable provider's rates, allowing them to jack prices through the roof []. I don't know if there is similar deregulation in the case of censorship, but I wouldn't be surprised.

      In the end it's best to have as many choices as possible. So far as I know, having municipal wireless does not preclude the existance of DSL and cable providers.

      • by wbren ( 682133 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:35PM (#18826945) Homepage
        I don't know how things work in Minnesota, but here in Boston we don't generally oust politicians for blocking Boing Boing. This will blow over, and there will be no repercussions. This is one of those situations where a politician can say "Even if someone has a problem with this, people will call them stupid for making a stink about something called Boing Boing."
        • by Chandon Seldon ( 43083 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:57PM (#18827099) Homepage

          It's not about boing-boing, it's about filtering on a public network. If the government is providing a public network, it must be open and unfiltered - because the existence of a free public network drives away alternative commercial providers - it may become the only network, or it may be the only network available to some users.

          • More just an issue of free speech deep down. That'll get someone tossed in the next election. When the hell did a government entity have the right block access to something that wasn't obscene?
            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by isdnip ( 49656 )
              No, it won't impact the election.

              Menino has been in office roughly forever, in large part because nobody else really wants the job. That is, nobody who's not far more inflammatory to some major part of the populace. "Mumbles" Menino is everyman's mayor, the none-too-bright neighbor who you know means well, and won't do anything really outrageous, while things basically take care of themselves.

              The muni wi-fi network probably has very few users anyway. It's rather new and I don't think it covers the whole
      • At least the people of Boston have a chance to throw the bums out in the next election. If you're encountering censorship by a cable company given a legal monopoly to "serve" a certain region, you have virtually no recourse

        It's funny how cable companies originally got their monopolies from local public service commissions and municipalities. By now the locals no longer matter, but monopoly service and bad government go hand in hand.

      • At least the people of Boston have a chance to throw the bums out in the next election.

        Here's all I have to say on the subject:

        Let's watch the monkey dance.
        Make fun of the South of France.

        And that's why Boston will not be throwing anyone out.

        (Thanks, Ze [], for the words)


      • by bhalter80 ( 916317 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @07:00PM (#18827121)
        While I appreciate your comment that they have the opportunity to throw them out at the next election that opportunity will remain just that and nothing else. To be voted out of office in MA takes some serious doing. For an example look at their senior senitor the Honorable Edward M Kennedy, he's often publicly intoxicated, and has even been involved in fleeing the scene of an accident where his campaign worker Mary Jo Kopechne was killed as a result of drowning after the car he was driving was driven off a bridge. I feel all their jobs are safe after all being a drunken murderer isn't enough to keep you from getting reelected.
        • If you lived in MA, you'd be stupid to vote out Kennedy. As a senior member, he has a lot of power and influence in congress. If they vote in someone else, it'd be 10 years before the new guy could even propose legislation without being laughed at. Maybe another 10 years before he could pull the members of his party to pass legislation.

          People like Hatch, Kennedy, Stevens, Pilosi, and all those other idiots *should* be voted out. It's in the best interest of the other 49 states to get rid of these asshol
          • I used to think that term limits were the way to go. However, after looking at CA, I see that's a really dumb way to do it. With term limits, everyone is a junior and the lobbyists just roll right over them.

            Interesting point.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by belmolis ( 702863 )

          What you're missing is the fact that many people care more about a politician's effectiveness in advancing the positions that they advocate than they do about his personal habits and morality. Senator Kennedy may be an alcoholic, but he's a highly functional alcoholic. He remains in office because, on the one hand, Massachusetts voters like his positions and find him effective, and on the other hand, they don't care very much about his alcoholism. There's no reason to think that it is particularly difficul

    • by Kohath ( 38547 )
      Municipal WiFi is bad after all.

      Government taking over services private industry could do is always bad and always has been. Free choices should decide when and if a service is provided or blocked, but governments choose based on politics and force.

  • Query (Score:3, Funny)

    by maxume ( 22995 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @05:59PM (#18826663)
    Is there anywhere left in the world where the government isn't equal parts hilarious and incompetent?
  • Meh.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Svenne ( 117693 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:02PM (#18826683) Homepage
    Where's your sense of style?

    "Boston Bans Boing Boing Because of a Blog"
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      As long as John McCain doesn't start singing "Ban ban ban, ban ban Boing Boing," we'll be okay.
  • by Shky ( 703024 ) < minus cat> on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:04PM (#18826703) Homepage Journal
    The mayor was quoted as saying that a "'Boing Boing' is clearly some type of explosive device."

    I say we commence remoonification.
  • Never Dumb Enough (Score:3, Insightful)

    by CWRUisTakingMyMoney ( 939585 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:05PM (#18826713)
    Sheesh, just when you think that Boston's government might have learned its lesson from this whole debacle, now they're doing something even dumber and more reprehensible by censoring? What a disgrace.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      It's not unusual at all for government officials - or corporate executives too for that matter - to try to cover stupidity and incompetence with even more stupidity and incompetence. To do anything else would mean having to admit that you made a mistake. It's a long, descending spiral.
  • Typical behavior for (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Mayor 'Mumbles' Menino. I do like the bit where he puts his seal of office, and name, on the blockpage... Not shy about his inanity is he?

    How's that dig thing coming along mayor? Oh, let me guess, straight info on the dig will be blocked next for policy violation?
  • censorship (Score:5, Informative)

    by coaxial ( 28297 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:13PM (#18826785) Homepage
    boingboing finds itself frequently banned. One reason is their frequent links to circumventing censorship. Another reason is that they sometimes post NSFW links.

    The fact that the government is censoring adults is offensive. But then again, Boston has had a reputation [] of puritanism.
    • by garcia ( 6573 )
      And this is exactly the problem that will continue to fester with municipal wifi competing with other residential connections.
    • by natrius ( 642724 )
      Well, there's a pretty good reason [] for Boston's reputation of puritanism.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Jeff DeMaagd ( 2015 )
      I think it's kind of funny and sad that the sect that had the most progressive attitudes at the time gets the worst rap. Seriously. Puritans, compared to their conteporaries, were progressive. I've read a couple articles about this, the Church in Europe frowned on any non-reproductive copulation and they frowned on alcohol. Puritans enjoyed alcohol in moderation and sex, just within marriage. Even the bit about how they handled "witches", while unfortunate, it was very, very short lived (a small handfu
      • by demi ( 17616 )

        Even with regard to sex, the Puritans incorporated premarital sex into courtship into a specific bedroom ritual between prospective mates. What's happened is that people have confused Victorian attitudes toward sex with the Puritans' rigid restrictions on many forms of recreation. And reports of Victorian negativity toward sex are probably overblown, even at that.

    • Is it ironic that the city best-known for their tossing of herbs [] and sparking something important is also the most conservative, old-boy-network-loving place in the United States? Most of the Brits I know LOVE Boston, they apparently feel at home and comfortable there in the core of, uh, New England.
  • I'm going to start a list of incidents where governments try to censor the Internet, or some portion of it, whether that is for political reasons, or out of pure ignorance of the facts of how the Internet actually works.

    I think I'll include a special section for 9/11 inspired idiocy.

    Before long, the only place to get uncensored wireless access will be from some 'terrorists' open AP..... sigh
  • by artifex2004 ( 766107 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:17PM (#18826817) Journal
    If they are blocking BoingBoing over the Mooninite issue, then they are censoring political speech critical of the regime.
    If the project is funded with public monies, this will be an excellent case to push hard and loudly in court.

    • by Reverberant ( 303566 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:36PM (#18826947) Homepage

      If they are blocking BoingBoing over the Mooninite issue,

      Umm, I think the "Boston is banning Boing Boing because of the Mooninites" meme is just a joke (or at least I hope it is).

      The more logical explanation is that the ISP who runs Boston free wi-fi is using on of the many filtering services known to block Boing Boing. []

      • Yep unfortunately the boingboingers and others who see a government conspiracy around every turn are going to spin this into "OMG they are censoring our tubes" instead of allowing this to open the debate on the usefulness on proprietary block lists and keyword blocking. Which is a shame.
    • ... they are censoring political speech critical of the regime.

      I don't think that Freedom of Speech in the US was supposed to be interpreted as "The government is obliged to use taxpayer's money to carry your speech and bring it out to the people". It basically means that you cannot be arrested for having and expressing an opinion. How you reach the people isn't the government's problem.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        I don't think that's a healthy interpretation. It allows eg the municipal wifi to block all opposition political speech, but let through (or even push) friendly political speech on the web. This leads to a very gross imbalance artificially imposed by the incumbent government, even though nobody has been arrested.

        I agree that the government doesn't have to facilitate political speech, but if they go out of their way to block some, they'd better have a very evenhanded approach, spreading the love to oppos
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by NMerriam ( 15122 )
        One of the fundamental aspects of freedom of speech is that the government cannot discriminate in services against certain people or groups based on their beliefs or politics.

        No, the government is not required to set up wi-fi, or have libraries with free public internet access. But if the government DOES do those things, they cannot discriminate against people based on their beliefs or associations, nor restrict access to (legal) material based on the content of the material.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      It should be noted that the Mooninite link is pure speculation by the submitter (and based on a joke on Boing Boing). I think it's very unlikely to be the reason.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:18PM (#18826819)
    - Saying that you can't do something illegal is useless, because it is already illegal.
    - Saying that you can't do something legal is wrong, because it is legal.
    • by MaceyHW ( 832021 )
      Um, it's not insightful, it's wrong. Terms of use are similar to a contract (yes this is a oversimplification). You agree to do ( or refrain from doing) things that are "legal" (read not criminal) and they give you "use" of something.
    • OK, how the hell did this get modded insightful? Parent literally just said that contracts are worthless.
  • speculation? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by notnAP ( 846325 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:21PM (#18826845)
    Is there more to the story that truly indicates that the discussions on the great LED scare are the reason for the ban? How do we know the city didn't ban it for other, equally stupid reasons? I mean, really... unless there is more to the story, mroe reason to support the speculation, the author really seems a little childish making such a wild claim.

    But really, what are the censoring for? I'm more worried about actual censorship than I am about a bunch of Adult Swim fans not being able to mutually mastubate over their pictures of Mumbles Menino.

    • You've gotta be kidding. Is this another joke? I got the mooninite one in the summary, but I don't understand this one. Could someone elucidate it for me, please?
    • perhaps Boing Boing was banned for having something up about the equally asinine event where the police were called in to a church which somebody as a "prank" had placed stereos with obscene music playing, and then detonated the stereos by means of bomb squad, yet claimed the 3rd as "evidence" - which I also believe was in Boston... s html []
  • by rueger ( 210566 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:31PM (#18826913) Homepage
    Yep. from the graphic accompanying TFA. That's it.

    What was the phrase? Don't know.

    Why was it blocked? Don't know.

    Was the Mayor of Boston involved. Highly unlikely.

    Was any authority or elected official involved? Highly unlikely.

    Really folks, there is utterly no information here except that some filter somewhere blocked one page on Boingboing's website.

    Hardly the First Amendment case that's being suggested and debated.
    • Really folks, there is utterly no information here except that some filter somewhere blocked one page on Boingboing's website.

      Two points:

      1. There shouldn't be any filtering software. If you have children you wish to protect by keeping them ignorant, go to the store and buy some filtering software. Don't censor everyone's connection.

      2. The "one" page that was blocked was boing boing's home page (check that graphic again). It's fair to assume subsequent pages were also blocked.

    • by dirtyhippie ( 259852 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:44PM (#18826997) Homepage
      Yup. This is highly unlikely to be censorship, it's infinitely more likely a bad configuration / oversight.

      Don't get me wrong, it's good to make a ruckus until the problem is fixed, and if by some meteor strike it was intentional, I'll line up with the rest. But we have no indication this is any such incident - it will in all probability be fixed.

      It must be a stressful job to write such filter code - make a mistake in one direction and you are exposing wee ones to pornography, make a mistake in the other direction and you've got blogs full of sheep on sites like slashdot complaining that you are "censoring" them.

      • Inadvertent censorship needs to be treated the same as intentional censorship - there's no way to differentiate the two, and trying to just allows the former to be used as an excuse to defend the latter.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Alsee ( 515537 )
        This is highly unlikely to be censorship, it's infinitely more likely a bad configuration / oversight.

        No, there is absolutely NO DOUBT here. The network is explicitly intercepting and blocking the webpage, and it is explicitly substituting a custom blocking page with the Mayor's name and government seal, and directly stating the fact that the page is being banned.

        It must be a stressful job to write such filter code - make a mistake in one direction and you are exposing wee ones to pornography, make a mistak
    • by 6Yankee ( 597075 )
      Christ. I got "Weighted phrase limit exceeded" instead of a Slashdot article [] the other day. And I just happen to work for a UK government research council.

      "Oh n0es, UK thought police are censoring Slashdot!"

      Some people round here need to get a grip, definitely.
    • by rueger ( 210566 )
      Point is, the sensible response to this would be for Cory to e-mail them, point out the problem, and in all likelihood they'd say "Oops. Sorry. Fixed it." I suspect that the post on BoingBoing was intended to be humorous, not a Call to Arms...
      • I suspect that the post on BoingBoing was intended to be humorous, not a Call to Arms...

        People that read BoingBoing frequently can't tell the difference. As everything posted there is either humorous or a call to arms, it's easy to confuse the two.

        (Score: -1, Flamebait)
    • by deblau ( 68023 )
      Assuming that picture isn't shopped, the Mayor of Boston was implicated. If he doesn't know about it, then the ISP is using his name and official seal improperly, and should be fined. Something is fishy here...
    • Really folks, there is utterly no information here except that some filter somewhere blocked one page on Boingboing's website.

      That is untrue: the whole site is blocked. Note what the blocked URL is.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by julesh ( 229690 )
      Was any authority or elected official involved? Highly unlikely.

      Highly likely. The decision to block inappropriate sites on the municipal wifi was almost certainly made by such an official. Did that official decide to block boing-boing? Probably not, but it is a consequence of that person's decision that this government sanctioned censorship (for whatever reasons the site is being censored, as you point out we don't know) is happening.

      Really folks, there is utterly no information here except that some fi
  • Simple solution (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gEvil (beta) ( 945888 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:45PM (#18827003)
    There's a really simple solution to this banning. Everyone in Boston should just use Distributed Boing Boing! []
  • by iminplaya ( 723125 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @06:47PM (#18827027) Journal
  • or Land of the censors?

    And I thought that China was the only country that censors websites.
  • bigger problem (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Yeah, this is funny and all, but proponents of municiple wifi take note -
    if the taxpayers are paying for the bandwidth, they have a reasonable
    expectation to control what goes over the wire(less) *they* own. Maybe the
    Boston case is just a mistake, or a quirk of the local political machine, but
    in many less tolerant places, the voting public themselves will choose to
    censor the network. If free muni wifi really works, alternatives will be
    driven out (no economies of scale), and residents will have no choice
  • by Catbeller ( 118204 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @07:08PM (#18827201) Homepage
    What a beautiful illustration of the danger -- no, the reality -- of having free wireless internet access provided by the government or a business. They WILL censor, and after they become ubiquitous, the internet won't be able to route around them.

    Wireless internet should be provided by mesh networks, with perhaps non-profit associations renting or buying fat pipe for backbone. Do it the bad way, and the gubmint or Rupert Murdock or Clear Channel start telling us who's not to have access this week.
    • by bmajik ( 96670 )
      Exactly. A few of us have been saying that municipal wifi is a horrible, horrible idea for a long time.

      How many more things like this will have to happen before you are convinced that you DON'T want your neighbors (or worse, some unaccountable entity with no marketplace competitors, with no incentive to provide a valuable service) getting to decide on what you can get internet access to (and wether or not you can opt-out of paying for access that doesn't suit your needs?)

  • Is this the kind of Government censorship that we are going to get when cities start installing WiFi? There should be a law that if public WiFi is going to be installed, nobody should be able to block any part of it.

    Why should we be letting some bureaucrat telling us that our tax dollars are going to be spent giving the community free WiFi, and then telling us that our tax dollars are going to be spent restricting us from content accessible through a network that our tax dollars paid for in the first place?
  • by spezz ( 150943 ) on Saturday April 21, 2007 @07:27PM (#18827317)
    We should all head down to the harbor and dump crates of routers into the bay. It worked before.
  • Now let's get some smart people in Boston to file a class-action lawsuit on behalf of the entire city for Violation of the first Amendment, since this is being done with taxpayer money.

I've finally learned what "upward compatible" means. It means we get to keep all our old mistakes. -- Dennie van Tassel