Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Butch Otter's Got Veto Power!

It's easy to get swept up in the race of the information age and assume the superiority of all things digital as far as process, communication and generally making things easier. As a corollary to this bias, I experience frequent astonishment and sometimes scorn at the relics of systems that now seem old fashioned, hokey or obsolete. I'm talking about things like gavels, paper voting ballots and highs that don't come in pill-form.

Then there are also a few instances where old is still better. Did we improve on the wheel? Certain mechanical systems are not enhanced merely by making them more complicated. Take the penumatic suspension systems on certain British cars for example. They seem sweet at first, but I've been present at two separate failures of said systems in Range Rovers and after that the ride wasn't so smooth you must be a limousine.

The raw power in Butch Otter's ridiculous giant, red veto stamp is another such thing. I always knew veto had power, but to see it wielded in bold red ink really takes the symbology to a new level. Plus which it looks like fun while a digital binary for executive-level rejection would not be nearly as viscerally emphatic.

That said, it sounds like Butch might be getting a little crazy on veto power. Such is the risk of a powerful old tool in the hands of a powerful old tool.

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