Paul Boutin has started writing a new column for Slate. In his initial offering, he argues that geeks should stick to coding around laws rather than lobbying to change them. I’m not sure I agree. It’s unlikely that geeks can beat the power brokers at their own game, but making people aware of the nasty things done in Washington and statehouses around the country is a noble cause. I didn’t realize how out of the mainstream most of the political issues we have to deal with every day are until I had to, in essence, explain what Eldred v Ashcroft is to my wife last night.