News commentary and predictions of political trends and what the future holds

Archive for April, 2008

The future of solar power

April 27, 2008

The future of solar power is linked to the cost of the medium for generating it. If it is too expensive, then the cost savings do not come into play fast enough to make it attractive to the greed instinct. A possible future breakthrough lies in a thin film that absorbs sunlight and generates electricity. It takes far less material to build photovoltaic cells from high grade silicon that is over US$500 per pound. Solar power is therefore a whole lot cheaper to generate and once you have established a solar farm it works without moving parts for 30 years. Instead of adding to global warming, nuclear waste dumps or using a finite resource, maintaining large scape solar power batteries becomes more possible when it is seen in a social context. Every roof in a city for example. It is time to evolve away from dependence upon a resource that is always going to be available for free. Unless we pollute the atmosphere with too much soot from burning coal, or worse a 500 year nuclear winter.


Zimbabwe nightmare

It looks more and more like Mugabe is going to clasp on to power perhaps by changing the mind of everyone in the country who voted him out. Remains to be seen. But so far he has raided the opposition and rounded up election monitors who declared the recount went against him. He is the worst kind of fascist. A damn stupid one.


Tradition and history

We reflect on the heroes of past wars. And wear poppies to celebrate their pointless loss. Films of children on the news, five year olds saying lest we forget – “they gave their lives so we could be free” one blonde six year old deliberately spells out for us incase we did not see it. They were talking about the twenty thousand young ANZACs slaughted on the beach at Gallipoli during WW1.

She seemed too young to understand why exactly those young men gave their lives. She seemed too innocent to understand what privations and horror those young men suffered, or would have suffered if their military achivements were not cut short in perhaps their very first day of battle. A soldier dead on a beach landing does not make invasion more successful. It does not advance the cause.

The use of landing craft was so much more effective at Dunkirk. But many were killed. The tradition has now outlived its use, parachute them in or use air strikes if you have to eliminate hard targets. War is evolving, on both sides of the divide.

If North Korea have been more active in exporting nuclear expertise, according to Israel and reason for bombing an alleged reactor in Syria that the US has kept secret until now, and this latest revelatation that Kim Jong-il (the “genius”) has figured out a way to counter the US first strike advantage bestowed on it by superior gun power. Military evolution at the expense of the people? Is this shocking?

All military evolution is at the expense of people.

If the US had spent just half of what they expended on the Iraq war, they could have fixed their health and education and the next generation of children educated there would not culturally short circuit the moment you say “learn from history”.

The Traditions of Warfare have no meaning in today’s world. The West routinely tortures and does not respect the rights of citizens to exist free of political interference. Politics was invented to prevent the abuse of power. The definition of security is not the same as “real security”. It is easier for a Government to survive on doublespeak than the raw truth.

If tradition is no longer seen as a value or learned from, if it is seen as redundant because we now can kill people in more ingenious and threatening ways, then we lost our way.

Health and Eduction for all (including Iraqi children) is the slow and definite answer. War as an expedient is the traditional source of real evil.


Banned (from TV) cartoon

April 24, 2008

“very creepy, disturbing children’s cartoon, banned from TV”

Views: 3,135,364

Original Sin, Version 0.31 ?

With over 3 million views, it carries a title that deserves to be quoted. An internet magic formula at work that also prompts me to comment about it. Is it sacreligeous? Heretical? Well, not quite.

Whether you agree with its ideas or imagery or find it objectionable you have to admit it is any bit as mystical as religious dogma of any faith – in that sense it seeks to be art. But to also be perceived as giving children a vision of that which competing religions seek to define, is troublesome to those who seek to steer clear of such defining influence.

The YouTube presentation is effective marketing. For clay-mation to subvert reality so effectively it simply has to be good because it is such a committed form of film making. When the mask of theatre becomes the mask of death it reveals that the powers that dictate seek to use our very lives as collateral that could be swallowed up in their wars for power. We are not very meaningful to the results of that equation.

Consider what the underground media in China spreading as their version of grass roots “conspiracy theory”, stories of how the CIA exploits Tibet in a grand plot; where do you think “conspiracy theory” is written? Tibet is clearly a place to absorb a displaced population or burgeoning community. It is land theft on a massive scale. Overpopulation is a problem that will not just “go away”; addressing it by brute force to create a more successful low-cost economy out of a feudal cooperative always claims economic victims. Does China have the twin benefits of huge centralised wealth in an ocean of feudal poverty? How effectively capital can now successfully exploit the huge working class. Or does it elevate the masses to the very heart of power?

The rise of financial power powers this virtual continent within a continent but how socialised did it become after its one-child policy? It seems to have made an historical leap away from the cultural revolution. There are over a third of a million millionaires in China. “The number of U.S. millionaire households has risen to a record high of 9.3 million as of mid-2006”. – TNS Newswire. Granted, China’s wealth is more centralised and the potential for growth is enormous. But does this explain the adoption of concern by the Right Wing about “The Environment”? Perhaps it does. Addressing this without war is crucial to the continued existence of life on Earth. It probably really is.


The broken view

April 21, 2008

“McCain’s whole discourse on Iraq is just a typical rightwing Washington fantasy made up in order to get you to spend $15 billion a month on his friends in the military industrial complex and to get you to allow him to gut the US constitution and the Bill of Rights.” – Juan Cole

McCain takes a soldier’s view. If you can’t understand it, shoot it. If it still looks disagreeable, send in a tank or a cluster bomb and silence them. The USA does not need political leaders who appear to be still acting out of post traumatic stress disorder from being to hell and back as a soldier.

The world does not need the USA profiting from the sufferering created by enforcing an inaccurate political view of the world. The World agrees, terrorism is not the answer for anybody. Engagement by the US political machine now gearing up for its “big decision” may invoke discussions to prevent more military misadventures. A country committing to the unwise acts of a failed leadership seems inevitable as a result of the collective guilt accumulated and unjustified.

Can wisdom take over, or are we stuck with the broken view, this endless cycle of creating conflict and resolving it by killing people?

McCain seems to have a handle on the “failed war on drugs” because he takes a logical view that first time offenders require treatment instead of interment.

One can see him extending that logic to apprehend the guilt vote by saying that it is only fair the USA should complete the job it started. The problem seems that the situation in Iraq is not better or more stable than before and it has magnified the threat of terrorism.

One hears Obama saying he would walk away, or Clinton saying she would nuke Iran.

It does not sound contextually geniune – if Democrats who regularly return to this blog do not object too loudly.

Does the United Nations really understand the sitution in Iraq? And if Iran is about to harm Israel they have to do so knowing that Israel’s response may be far worse than the USA’s inevitable long term rebuilding excercise if it engaged with Iran over nuclear arms – whether they actually exist or not has proven to be a matter that the USA holds itself beyond the usual norms of truth or reality. Never mind, they are at war. So their behavior over the past seven years is beyond question.

Barack Obama may ultimately be the Democratic candidate, but defining his position on Iraq as chicken is too powerful a political tonic for McCain to exploit. Hilary Clinton realised that and that explains her recent belicose language about the USA response to Iran’s threats towards Israel.


UK Terror plot facing court

April 6, 2008

“The man, Assad Sarwar, was said to be in contact with terrorist leaders overseas and visited Pakistan a month before his arrest as preparations for the airline attacks were being finalised.”
– quote from The Times article

Disturbing Trends Analysis

UK based terror operations busted by the state now in trial. Our assessments about Pakistan seem to unfortunately be bearing out. Although it is a vast society and may take years to change in any direction, politically, it had the expedient of military rule that eventually just succumbed to civilian rule, reluctantly. Or he should, if I understand this right, from Khaleej Times. It is PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif.

“Gen. (Retd) Pervez Musharraf will have to accept the verdict of the people given in the election and step down,” Sharif said in an interview with Indian TV channel Aaj Tak to be telecast today, according to a PML-N Press release here.

“We intend to bring the legislation in parliament for President’s removal,” he said, adding “Musharraf is isolated and will have to go.”

There is a terrifying sense of political entropy in Pakistan and Zimbabwe. The idea that the leader must change seemed not believed by the autocratic aspirations of leaders who deserve no recognition for their decisions.

Intransigent leaders who will not let go of power are subject to law to allow other minds time to make a difference. The result of no change of leadership is social sickness and intergenerational domination leading to decay. We must hope that the disease does not spread.