Adventures Politics Technology Thoughts

My New Website Experiment:

So I have become increasingly dissatisfied with a host of news aggregators, from Huffington Post to Google News to reddit to the Drudge Report. This is for a variety of reasons. The agendas of places like HuffPost or Drudge I find highly disagreeable. I disagree with HuffPost for their brazen support of Hillary Clinton and Drudge for his non-stop agitating for Donald Trump.  This type of agenda-driven news reporting is problematic because it means the reader must filter through the bias of both the aggregator and the story that it links to. I have problems with social news sites like reddit because the inherent bias and popularity towards certain kinds of stories, as well as a highly flawed upvote/downvote system, mean some important news items get ignored. The problem with sites like Google News is that it is highly reliant on algorithms instead of human editors, so very important stories can be left behind and not featured on their main pages. It should also be noted that most aggregators generate exactly none of their own content. I figured if I am going to have to filter through a thousand different news sites to get to the stories I want to see, maybe someone else would be interested in what I find. So that’s when I decided to create my own website,, where I also don’t generate any of my own content (ha ha), but I provide a limited number of links each day. I link to the stories I view as either the most important and relevant, or the most interesting.

Greene Data Screen Capture

I don’t really have any rules for how I do this, but I am developing a method to find things. I do have preferences for what I post. I will never link to a website like Forbes, which has a hard paywall and harasses you for using an ad-blocker. I prefer to always link to stories that are on sites with no kind of paywall if I can help it. I also try to link to local news stories when possible. If I see something on Yahoo! News that is just a republication of an interesting AP or Reuters story, I will attempt to find the original story on either AP or Reuter’s website as well.  My standards are simple: is it important, relevant, or interesting? In terms of bias, I am basically critical of everyone. I don’t have a rooting interest for any major political party, corporation, or institution. I don’t receive payment from anyone. I don’t show ads. I have no one giving me money to put forth a point of view. I have no one giving me money for this, period. The purpose of the website at this stage is how to best execute my idea and to test the market to see if there is a demand for this kind of thing. For example, I imagine many Bernie Sanders supporters are very unhappy with CNN and Huffington Post for their poor treatment of Sanders and their highly favorable coverage of Hillary Clinton. In the same way, many conservatives and libertarians who do not like or support Donald Trump are currently disgusted with people like Matt Drudge. If I can demonstrate there is a demand for this website from people like this, as well as others, maybe I have something here.

For now I just want to present a daily set of links to stories. I want the website to load quickly and be as simple and easy to use as possible. Hopefully so far I have achieved those goals. Give it a look, won’t you?



In between two of my trips to the mental ward in March of 2010, I was driving around town on St. Patrick’s Day. I was driving around randomly while manic, late at night. I actually had no idea then, or now, what time it was or what day it was, I just knew it was dark. I realized it was St. Patrick’s Day because I had gone into a gas station near the university and seen tons of college kids dressed in green buying beer.  As I was driving away from the gas station, I saw a rather rotund man yelling at a cop. He was holding a sign, and seated on a milk crate. The cop was still in his cruiser, with the window rolled down. He was having some sort of exchange with the man, but after a few minutes, the officer gave up and drove off.  I was driving in the opposite direction, and after the police drove away, I turned around and pulled up to the gentleman on the milk crate.  He was sitting there on the crate: holding a sign, as you do when you’re homeless and begging for change. He appeared to be in his late 60s, wearing a green jacket, a hat, and sporting a gray beard. I rolled my window down and offered, “Hey, you need a ride?” He replied in the affirmative; after all it was fairly cold. I asked him if he wanted a beer, so I stopped at the gas station again and grabbed him a tall can of something like Fosters.  I got a few for myself as well.

I introduced myself, and asked his name. He told me it was Harry. “Where do you want to go,” I asked. He replied that it didn’t matter, so I wandered around for a while on the darkened streets of my city, mostly empty because it was late at night, I suppose. Eventually we made our way back to the apartment building where I recently had lived. My room had since been emptied and locked, and I had been dispossessed of my key. We spent a few minutes trying to see if there was any way to cheat the lock and get inside, as it was fairly cold, but alas, we could not. We kind of just hung out there, outside the place, drinking beer and carrying on late into the night, waking up half the apartment building. As I found out later, tenants claimed a big party involving many people was going on outside, late into the night.  Eventually, after all the beer was finished, we retired back to my little Saturn, and I turned the heat on.  At this point, Harry mentioned that he wrote poetry, and had been a Vietnam veteran. He asked me if I would like to hear one of his poems. I replied that I would.

Harry produced a worn out sheaf of yellow, dog-eared notebook papers and began to read. I listened with rapt attention. I don’t remember clearly what he said now, as I was in the middle of going rather insane, but I seem to recall one line clearly: “I cried so many tears.” His poem was about his life, what he had seen, and he shared with me his wisdom. I regret that I never got a copy of it, but again, insanity. It was warm in the car, and after we shared this poem I told him I was going to sleep, and that he was welcome to sleep next to me in the passenger seat. He took me up on my offer and we both dozed off.

Maybe three hours later we both woke up, restless, the car still running and pouring out heat. I asked him if he wanted to make a campfire, and he said sure, so I started driving. I took him a ways to my parents’ house (where I wasn’t really welcome), and we walked back to the yard, and sat around the fire pit behind the shed.  I produced my Swiss Army knife and started shaving wood. I don’t remember what we used to start it, but there was plenty of wood, and it didn’t take too long to get a nice big fire going. We relaxed a bit, and he rolled up a pant leg and showed me a big sore from an injury he had got a while back. We sat around the fire and talked some more and he read me another poem. I asked him to read me the first poem he had read to me again. He did, and I listened again, hearing the emotion in his voice. I was overcome by the heartfelt nature of this art he had created. We sat around the fire for a while longer, and then eventually it was time to go. I think he knew better than me that he did not belong there, in the suburban world of the housed, where people get things like health insurance and a paycheck. At some point in the night of our adventure, he had lost his panhandling sign, and he asked if I could get him some cardboard and a marker. I dashed back to the house and returned after a brief search. He made himself a new sign and we departed again.

I asked him where he wanted to be let off as we were nearing a highway off-ramp, and he insisted that right where we were, at the exit, was fine. I questioned him, asked him if I could buy him some food, but he declined. So I left him there, alone, with his sign, on the off-ramp. I drove away, with tears in my eyes. I never saw Harry again, but I’ll never forget him.