Vista = Pain in the Ass
After many days of work, I'm starting to realize that OpenGL just won't work in Vista the way I want it to. Options are pretty limited, but it looks like I may explore using Flash to render the text to screen and "warp" the text to get the pseudo 3D look. Since my plan was to start building other visualizations, this would be a huge blow to the visual effect of the project.
The other option is to port to DirectX and If I do that I might as well rewrite it in visual studio. That said development is pretty much at standstill awaiting a solution to these technical concerns.