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Summit Up

Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column upset about American companies helping to oppress the Chinese people.Now, we know this isn’t on the tops of peoples’ minds right now, with the hurricane and the war and all.But we just couldn’t ignore it. The Baltimore Sun, National Public Radio, the Washington Post and Common Cause have all reported that Microsoft software has been blocking out words like “democracy” and “freedom” that are available to Chinese bloggers. If you try to blog using one of these words, you get a warning.The Washington Post published an opinion piece citing a Harvard Law School study, noting that China’s internet filtering system, developed with American companies, involves “thousands of public and private personnel” scanning blogs, internet webpages, search engines, looking for unsuitable content.We didn’t want to believe this was going on, but we could believe it knowing how many U.S. corporations use their own freedoms to make financial gains throughout the world. Where is the government on this one? Where are our senators? How can we just let Microsoft – which represents all of us, whether we like it or not – pervade a culture with horrible uses of technology? We’re not sure how to deal with this one. If anyone’s reading from China, we apologize for Microsoft making money off your censorship.If Windows is their product, perhaps it’s time to start breaking them with alternatives – or Apples. Hey Macintosh … got any ideas?***Stephanie and Bryan Burt are celebrating their 15th anniversary today. “We would like to tell each other we love and cherish each other and that life is wonderful.”Good luck with the next 15. Keep up the positive spirit.***Valerie, our field agent in Atlanta, couldn’t resist a recent column we wrote about a dating “formula.” You divide your age in two, add 10, and you get the ideal age for your mate.She wrote: “Based on the current year, the formula “qualifies” my husband to be with his wonderful wife (me, of course). However, using his age when we married gives us an unsatisfactory result. Well, unsatisfactory based on the formula, but totally fine with me (insert sound of cheering and applause for my husband from other male persons).***It’s Thursday, and we’re sorry for getting all political this morning. Let us know something we don’t at

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