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Is the West dead? The short answer is not by a long short—if by “dead,” we mean irrelevant – then what must be squared out with this assertion is to pose the question: is the West still the richest, strongest, and most inventive continent in the world? Yes, China now has the second biggest economy in the world; she has also managed to figure out how to successfully manufacture bullet trains and cruise missiles; but Europe and north America still generate two thirds of the world’s wealth, has more institutions of higher learning and spend more than two thirds of its R&D dollars—all despite having less than one-seventh of its population. The west is seems is seem to maintain its cultural and technological primacy for a long time.
But how secure is this to dog position? As Winston Churchill once put it prosaically: “The farther backwards you can look, the farther forwards you are likely to see.” If we look back far enough (to the last ice age), on a scale big enough (the whole planet), we can indeed identify the forces that drive history—and where they are taking us – that’s to say, it’s conceivable many of our standard assumptions about why the West is ahead these days may very well be wrong!
In his bestseller Guns, Germs and steel, Gerald Diamond floats the balloon; the reason why the west has managed to dominates the world (s0 far) is not because it is able to successfully harness some eclectic or genetic force, but simply because of geography and changes in weather patterns. When the world warmed up at the end of the last ice age, making farming possible, it was towards the western end of Eurasia that plants and animals were first domesticated. Early-western hunter gatherers were no smarter or harder working than anyone else; they just happened to lived in the region where geography had put the densest concentrations of plants and animals that could be successfully domesticated. Another 2,000 years would pass before domestication began in other parts of the world, where resources were less abundant. Holding onto their early lead, westerners went on to be the first to build cities, create states, and conquer empires with the power of the horse and ox. Non-westerners followed suit everywhere from Persia to Peru, but only after further time lags.
Yet the west’s head start in agriculture some 12,000 years ago does not tell us everything we need to know – neither does it supply us with the information to draw out the question posed in this essay: is the West dead? And is it the Age of Asia? Granted, while Gerald Diamond does explain history’s shape and how agricultural patterns play a preponderant role in human affairs, it does not do so in a straightforward way that allows us to say for certain in the future; the decline of the West is a done deal – observation suggest (as bleak as it may be), the West might still have a few ace cards up its sleeves as it takes a seat before Asia rising…the rest of this essay has been withdrawn from general circulation due to measured response.
November 20, 2010
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What’s the pull factor that accounts for Sarah Palin’s incredible popularity? Darkness says, everyone likes to tune into Palin; because they are all pretty dumb in the US and watching her is a bit like taking a holiday from yourself – he quipped recently, “watching Palin makes the average American feel like he is Albert Einstein…it’s therapy.”
After Darkness controversial comment in a thread in Ekunaba – the moderator had to close it down. But that really set me thinking – besides the question still stands: what really accounts for the stupendous popularity of the former governor of Alaska and Republican candidate for the vice presidency?
Although many Americans consider Palin two rungs slightly higher than white trash and entirely ill-equipped to be president, an entertaining faux pas magnet and a figure of derision – this doesn’t explain her widespread popularity - Palin happens to be a very well-paid public speaker. Infact, more people want to hear her talk (or make a fool of herself) than Tony Blair, George Bush, LKY and Elmo put together. She also has a Godzilla presence on the internet, with nearly 3 million fans on Facebook and roughly 400,000 on Twitter, her tweets are regularly picked-up and posted by the mainstream press. Sarah Palin even has her own TV network, “Sarah’s Alaska” had the highest ratings its network ever received for a debut show. So what really gives – she’s got no paper qualifications, no experience and she doesn’t even know her left from right foot in capital hill – infact, watching Sarah Palin win over the electorate during the mid term US elections reminded me of the power of dumb and how even someone like Ris Low – if she really put her mind to it; could probably be the Prime Minister of Singapore one day – far fetched, implausibe, a million in one…..The remainder of this essay has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response.
November 20, 2010
Unlike Qantas, SIA has taken a less conservative approach to the trent 900 engine crisis that is mounted on three of it’s A380′s. The airline justified it’s decision to ”carry on,” based on recent checks on all of the Trent 900s used on its 11-strong fleet immediately after the QF32 emergency, and concluded ” no findings of concern”.
Flamboyant businessman and aviator Dick Smith criticised Singapore Airlines for the decision to con’t flying. He went on to state, ”The fact that Qantas grounded those planes is a credit to it but to have companies like Singapore Airlines keep flying is incredibly irresponsible,” Smith says. The uncontained engine failure could have struck any of the three airlines which use the Trent 900, he says.
Singapore Airlines maintains it has fully complied with the guidelines from Rolls-Royce and the European authorities. ”The bottom line is that if it’s not safe we don’t fly,” says the airline’s spokesman, Nicholas Ionides. Since the European watchdog released an airworthiness directive on November 10, Singapore Airlines has been running more regular checks on each engine. ”Anything that is suspect we will be looking at very carefully. If we need to change an engine it will be done,” Ionides says.
Other experts also caution against concluding that the earlier airworthiness certificates issued for the Trent 900 suggest….this write up has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response.
November 20, 2010
Hamid Karzai, the Afghan leader seems to be getting tired of the American military strategy being played out in his own country – specifically, anti corruption charges targeting members of his family. Mr Karzai has long been under pressure to keep his young government free of shady dealings, but with his brother part of a corruption probe from US prosecutors – it all seems to be reading like a case of “all in the family.’
This all comes in the backdrop of the Afghanistan leader vowing to erase the “stigma” of corruption after winning a new five-year term at elections just over a year ago. But western leaders remain unconvinced that not only is Karzai not up to the task, but that he is deliberately giving them the run around treatment – as not only has Karzai & Co blocked a number of sensitive cases and tried to rein in the powers of anti-corruption forces such as the western-backed Major Crime Task Force. Some experts have argued that corruption and abuses of power could pose a greater risk than the Taliban to Afghanistan.
This entry has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response.
November 19, 2010
(To increase the font size – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) A few days ago, I asked Missy Dotty whether she had a killer recipe for Mee Goreng – she sent this gem over – allow me to say this, Madam Stella’s talents are indeed wasted – in a perfect world, she would be recruited by either Wong Kan Seng or the CIA as a bomb disposal instructor, as not only is she incredibly precise – but her instructions are so clear that they are virtually fail proof – just to prove the point, I even forwarded this vid to those two bungling monkeys, Astroboy and Scholarboy – and guess what?
Their mee goreng tasted exactly the same as mine – and they all still have their fingers.
So without further delay folks; may I introduce you all to Madam Stella and her incredible Mee Goreng.
Pls note: I shall share with all of you my own recipe in a commercial kitchen one of these days.
Anyone who doubts that our politicians and institutions don’t know how to laugh at themselves should check this youtube clip – after that ask yourself what would happen if the same stunt was pulled here? I rest my case.
While our problems are serious and the job politicians do may even be important. I think our politicians and institutions take themselves far too seriously.
They are so focused on keeping their image prim and proper that they don’t realize, the wisdom of letting go and laughing at yourself – instead when someone takes a poke at them; they often go on overdrive to defend their image; never once bothering to ask the most needful questions, like: does this add or subtract to my character? Will this take or give to my image?
Contrary to myth – only those who have no reputation to defend can afford to laugh it off - the truth is closer to the opposite: the ability to laugh at the situation and being prepared to put our own foibles in the spotlight has to be the quientessential act of self confidence for any leader and institution - because it means when one is prepared to show others the warts-and-all side of one’s personality; this can only connect with the warts-and-all side of the audience - that’s how I see effective leaders; they are people who simply can’t afford to take themselves too seriously; neither do they see the wisdom of keeping up an image of infallibility at every turn and opportunity – by laughing what they do is not only show us how courageous they are in the face of adversity; they do something that is far more important – they give us the permission to laugh at them and in this subtle way – they teach us how to laugh at ourselves.
I think laughter may be a form of courage. As humans we sometimes stand tall and look directly into the source of our fear, only to laugh. I remember one scene during the first few days of the Ascension Wars, when the air was filled with so much anxiety - it was during the eve of the biggest cyber battle ever waged in the virtual – the brotherhood and their allies were out numbered 300 to 1, there we were lined up facing the mighty Aryanian army – and in the far distance – I saw Darkness, a solitary figure standing at the edge of the cliff sniggering - soon it turned into a mocking into a chugging laugh; the way a train labors as it’s about to tear away from the station - and in no time, the laughter reached a deafening crescendo as everyone joined in – by this stage of course everyone on the battlefield was laughing with him and strangely all our fears disappeared.
Some people say, the reason why this is possible – is it’s only a game. They don’t know half the truth – that was many years ago – today I am married and have two wonderful kids – but I have fond memories of those times. Something tells me, we have never been braver……. The rest of this write up has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response…..:
November 19, 2010
To increase the font size in this essay – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing + This is a con’t from the series: Why is Suu Kyi giving ground to the Generals – Part II
Harphoon: Vollaraine, one question that we get asked very frequently from many of our readers is this: is Burma developing a nuclear bomb?
Vollariane: No Burma is not developing the nuclear bomb. I think, there is 4 reasons why this is not possible; not possible in at least your and my lifetime….. - the rest of this interview has been withdrawn due to Measured Response.
November 19, 2010
(To increase the font size in this essay – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) This entry is a con’t of Why is Suu Kyi giving ground to the Generals – an interview with the head of the ASDF
Harphoon: Vollariane, how do you rate Suu Kyi’s chances of being able to bring economic growth to Burma?
Vollariane: We are not convinced that she will play a pivotal role. Yes, I understand how it may seem to ordinary people that they may even see her as a very important person. However in the greater scheme of things; there has never been any shortage of firms and interest groups who are more than willing to do business with the military junta in Burma.
Harphoon: Are you saying morality doesn’t feature in the calculation for those firms?
Vollariane: Not exactly Harphoon. What I will say is the profit motive will always find a way of legitimizing and justifying trade with Burma. Or for that matter any repressive regime on this planet. Look here Harphoon Burma is an immensely rich country. And 90,000 Billion cubic feet of natural gas and 3.3 Billion barrels of untapped oil reserves is a very big motivation. Why do you think Singaporedaddy and Darkness are both planning to go to Burma?
The other reason is geo-political and this is really quite complex as it involves access to the Indian ocean. A bufferzone to box up India and possibly to prevent American imperialist policies from having a foothold in the Bay of Bengal. I can go on and on.
All these goodies are just to good to pass up – it would be foolish for any country not to negotiate around the turnpike of moral consideration. I will have you know Harphoon, rather ironically infact, we strongly believe one of the main players who will feature in Burmese markets in the foreseeable future will be US and EU firms.
Harphoon: What is India’s beef with China?
Vollaraine: The mistrust and emnity is really based on historical reasons and China’s tacit support of Pakistan. I think that really pisses off the Indians. Either that or they just hate the Chinese because they don’t believe in Yoga. Or maybe it’s got something to do with that half Chinese actress in Smallville. You notice Smallville is the only US mini series missing from the Indian channels, they even have Sex in the City and CSI, but no Smallville.
Harphoon: You said these goodies are too good to pass up. You also mentioned there are geo-political incentives for any country to trade with Burma. So who are currently the beneficiaries and what forms their motivation?
Vollariane: Main player currently in Burma seems to be only China. And their agenda is pretty straight forward - their partnership is based on a mix of resource security and geo-political realities.
Fuel security in the form of natural gas that the Chinese tap from Rambree and funnel through 900 miles of pipeline northwards to Yunnan in China. Geo-political is more complex and has to do with territorial disputes, namely Anarchanal and the strategic need for the Chinese to project into the Bay of Bengal to counter balance Indian might.
If you look at the Andaman Sea, you will find that China doesn’t have land access, so this is spoiler and without the Burmese connection; they simply cannot support any blue water operations in that theatre.
In this respect, the Chinese relationship with Burma goes beyond economics to cover strategic and security considerations.
Another reason is the need for the Chinese to secure a buffer zone between themselves and the Indians; it will be very difficult for them to consolidate their hold over the region as without a proxy like Burma; the Indian secret service can play them very much in the way they double deal in Kashmir to destabilize Pakistan – the Chinese definitely don’t want that.
On the economic front. I think one other area that is hard to quantify but represents a large market is Burma’s decaying infrastructure and public utilities. Most of these state assets have been ravaged by over 30 years of relentless sanctions. They also offer tremendous business opportunities for firms.
On the second layer, we have the supplementary economy which is gaming, networks and the rest. Again with a population base of 60 million, Burma offers a fantastic platform that even the Confederation cannot ignore. This is one reason why Burma will be the main topic in Munich, Berlin and London for our next Confederation talks.
The ASDF will make a very strong recommendation to…the rest of this interview with the head of the ASDF has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response.
November 18, 2010
(To increase the font size of this essay – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) The Confessions is the first e-book ever published in Singapore – todate it has a circulation of over 150,000 spanning over 37 countries and has been translated to over 30 languages – this historical instalment is now freely avaliable to you – editing and compiling was undertaken by Inspir3d of the Intelligent Singaporean / Francois of C’est La Vie and Tim of Icered.
“My mistress was the third wife of the old man who I served in the moment of my youth – she was the fairest of them all – like all women in the old man’s household, her place was set in ancient stone like the chair she occupied during her mah jong sessions with the rest of his other wife’s.
This seat which faced the East, meant she was never the first to eat and always the last to leave the table and she was expected always to pour tea for the older mistresses and remain silent unless spoken too – this was the way politics was conducted in the household of the old man – whenever the old man visited, the older mistresses would be jealous of my mistress because he only had eyes for her – so both the first and second mistress would gossip behind her back and this saddened my mistress – as she could never seem to do or say any thing right, even when she tried so very hard to please them.
In the afternoons, my mistress took long walks in the nearby park in Hampstead Heath, where I was expected to serve as her silent driver and body guard – I was always expected to stay seven paces behind her – seven paces was good, just enough room to roll, whip out my pistol and fire a shot – the old man was a triad boss in China town and had many enemies and I took my job seriously.
One afternoon during her walks, she stopped and turn towards me, in that one moment, I was struck by her tragic beauty, her eyes, mouth and almond shaped face all conspiring with the dying light transformed her into the most beautiful woman I had ever seen.
In the days that followed, I found myself imagining her wind sweep hair as she looked at me mournfully, the image clung to me like seaweed never ever once leaving me and even when I dedicated myself to study, there was just enough of her to torment me – eventually she confided to me her deepest and most intimate feelings which I swore never to tell another soul – and for the first time, I realize the depths of her sorrow.
As time passed I came to relish the moment when we were together, the rustling of decaying leafs, the lingering aroma of her perfume, all these things I longed for but above all, I wished only to be with her – she always recounted to me the events of the day and I would listen to her, never once saying a word, except perhaps to nod my head to signify that I understood.
On my 23rd birthday after successfully finishing the second of my degree in Imperial College, my mistress gave me a pair of matching jade cufflinks – she swore me to secrecy and though I said, I was not in a position to accept such a valuable gift, she thrust it into my hands with a gentle smile.
Of all people, I had forgotten that which I had always reminded myself, I was my worst enemy and I accepted her gift.
In return, I bought her a set of pearl earrings – though it cost nearly a month’s wages, I knew it would make her happy and that was all that really mattered, I survived on sandwiches and instant noodles that whole month, but the thought of giving her something she would wear from time to time was enough to fill the void in me and I was the happiest man who ever lived.
That Chinese New Year, the old man celebrated with eighty eight tables – it had been a prosperous year and it was also his moment to show off his new bride to the whole of China town.
And though she sat on the main table and I was so very far away – when she saw me wearing her cuff links, she lowered her eyes and smiled shyly – though this lasted only for a moment, she was very much like a cloud being carried away with the wind as she gently touched the pearl earrings I had given her.
At age 23, I Huan Guan was like a sampan sailing into treacherous and uncharted waters.
This is my true confession, tell no one.”
November 18, 2010
(To increase the font on this essay – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) If a picture tells it better than words can; then this youtube clip tells it in a million words in a few seconds – and explains - why Ireland’s economy is completely ****ed.
Ireland’s hellish economic ride into hellville is far from over – the latest spin just out from the clever money corner suggest – the Irish economic meltdown risks spreading to other eurozone member states and could spiral out of control if it reaches Spain. There is a prosaic deadplay about the latest instalment of the eurozone crisis, which looks highly likely to culminate in Ireland being forced to seek a bailout from the EU. This is like to trigger a….this report by Astroboy has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response.
November 18, 2010
(To increase the font in this essay – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) Mr Li Gang is the deputy police chief for the district of Boading in China – he is a very powerful man, gamers call him “Tai Li Gang,” as they have to pay him tribute – in Boading, nothing ever happens without Li Gang giving the nod; this is how politics is conducted in China – it’s been this way for yonks and nothing it seems has been able to change the way things have always been done in China – or so thought Li Gang’s son when after a drinking spree he knocked down and killed a student; before speeding off Li Gang junior was heard shouting, “Make a report, my Dad is Li Gang.”
Once netizens in China got wind of Li Gang junior boast – a tsunami of scorn and derision directed at the arrogance of officialdom resulted in Li Gang senior having to appear in nationwide TV bowing and sobbing like a baby. This episode is one of the most graphic examples of why China’s authoritarian stance is beginning to look like a giant with clay feet – and it’s headed for a full frontal collision with one third of the world’s most populous nation of internet users – when one scales the case of to be or not to be against this new calculus; what’s patently clear is change, specifically political change, may not be a matter of choice – but one of strategic necessity, if the long term goal for the communist party is survival…this essay written by pumpman has been withdrawn from general circulation due to measured response.
November 18, 2010
Recently, the UN agency paints a worrying picture about the global food supply – the bill for global food imports will top $1,000 Billion this year alone – this write up by the ASDF has been withdrawn from general circulation due to measured response.
(to increase the font in this essay – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) Have you ever wondered what that anon writer who keeps posting pesky essays might really be like in their offline lives? What about that cute chiobu who keeps sending you those naughty post that you can’t seem to share with the rest of your online friends? Is she a two metric ton internal beauty instead of what she claims to be online - what about that sweet-looking mild mannered doctor who even calls you to remind to take your cough drops before you turn in for the night – does he happen to lead a double life like Dr Jackal, spewing unmitigated vitriol online?
Indeed, the image of trolls walking among us, taking refuge in their cloaks of anonymity is as old as the net itself – it’s a subject that hardly requires any elaboration; or should we take a closer at the whole subject of anonymity again – is it really true to say online anonymity has absolutely nothing to offer?
First of all – let’s start with the basics: the law of attraction - where would any self-respecting site really be without bile and venting of spleens? - one could successfully claim; civil debate might otherwise be a forlorn dream if writers don’t have the stomach to thread where angels fear to go.
I suspect a fair amount of prejudice against anon social political bloggers may well stem from a touch of envy from the establishment - notice it’s always the press corps and the apparatus of assimilation who keeps bringing up this subject or at least, they seem to be the only one’s who seem interested to bat it for six - the politics of envy is understandable; when one considers the strengths, oppurtunities, weaknesses and threats - firstly, while journalists have to choice but to keep their inner troll on a short leash (and shorter still in Singapore as it’s the only employer of journalist). Bloggers on the otherhand don’t need to play by the same rules – they don’t need to subscribe to a code of ethics, the rules of grammar and a need for accuracy and balance that journalists must strive for.
Faced with an unequal playing field – it’s hard these days for journalist to compete; especially when all they seem to do these days is to make peace with what could have been against what must be under the sun of a nation building press. Neither does fidelity and keeping to the rules imply what they have to say is either accurate, worth reading or appealing – if that were really all there is to the “news.” All of us would be reading Encyclopaedia Britannicas – the fact that we don’t suggest – information by it’self is not king; and there might actually be much more to the whole idea of news being merely information and reportage; it’s this new definition of “news,” that may hold the skeleton key to allow us to unravel how anonymity fits into the whole corsetted jacket of the social political blogger to produce a very attractive package - let’s start with a lightning appraisal of the typical anon social political bloggers – he is firstly a misunderstood and unappreciated creature. For now; all his efforts at wordsmithing seems to be nothing more than a kid throwing out daily reads on a tri-cycle – a disgenous way to dessimitating information - then again…just as graffiti was once dismissed, maybe it’s a case of their time to shine is yet to come?
The acid test to the worth of the anon social political blogger may not lie in today as much a tomorrow – consider this: one day somewhere in the distant future; when historians delve back into these curious times to seek to understand the pathos of a bygone age, are they going to peruse through national archives; or will they spend more time piecing together the works of anon social political bloggers - this idea of appraising worth may sound querky; but when one considers similar reversals of fortune through the ages and how even the sporadic scribbles by slaves who once worked on Pharoahs tomb is not consider piece de resistance material - the rest of this write up by Scholarboy has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response.
Does the Devil Play Warcraft in Computerland? – Making sure cyber violence doesn’t become real / Part 1
November 18, 2010
(To increase the font size in this essay – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) Can violence in the virtual make the dreaded “jump,” and overeach into the real world? Is it even realistic these days to treat the violent behaviour of avatars in online games such as World of Warcraft as something that is wholly disconnected from the real world? Or do they happen to be one of the same reality? Spilling out into classrooms, malls and even places that we consider safe and secure?
Could it be comparisons between the virtual and the real world have always been blurry because of big businesses? - after all, the mufflement of the truth by big business is hardly new – consider for instance the tobacco industry and how it has successfully side skirted the link between cigarettes and cancer; remember how BP once attempted to brush off the busted oil well off the gulf of Mexico as a “minor incident” - when we ask ourselves: why so little has been done to rein in firms who develop online games - do we also need to take stock of hard realities like politics, vested interested and dark forces such as the Brotherhood (along with other unseen forces in the cyberworld).
let’s face it; online games aren’t all together so different from cigarettes - at the end of the day; they all have people working towards the same set of metrics – it’s profit linked and so much of it needs to recruit the spirit of entreprenuership – and if you’re in any doubt; gaming as an industry is different – banish all your illusions! This business model is very very real:
Hence, attempting to differentiate the virtual world from the real world is at best an artificial distinction that is designed to mislead – with so much business interest already migrating to the no brick and mortar virtual world – what is seldom recognized is gaming is more than just gaming; just as printing firms have a supply chain that involves suppliers of paper who need to have networks that stretch all the way to tree cutters – that same network of linkages needs to be transplanted into the virtual- as a consequence; when we talk about gaming – what we may need to do is take a closer look at the sum of it’s aggregates.
What emerges when we adopt this need vantage of viewing the gaming world – is the sheer scale and size of the geography that comes under the term “gaming,” it is not a country as it is a continent – for instance if one tabulates the cummulative transactions in Everquest for one year; they work out to the combined GDP of Russia alone! And this figure only represents what economist call the equivalent of “trackable spending,” – if one takes into account the underground transactions that is fueled by syndicated guilds, clone gaming platforms and deep pool runners this figure can easily be multiplied ten fold! The rest of this essay has been withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response.
“That said, I’d disagree with the assertion that the “virtual sword” that sparked the murder in China “didn’t really exist.” Sure it existed. It may have just been bytes in a computer server someplace, but it certainly existed. It was traded, used, carried around, viewed, and even sold. It definitely existed for the individuals who played the game, maybe even more than a physical sword would have existed (which would undoubtedly have been less useful and magical)….”
I am sorry, I slashed u; I thought we were just playing LAN – A Study of the Online Violence migrating into real world
November 17, 2010
(To increase the font size – hold down the Ctrl key and keep pressing +) Is it possible violent online games are somehow responsible for transforming the average “kwai kwai” teenager into a crazed criminal? While it’s palpably true online games are becoming increasingly violent. This explanation doesn’t go very far to supply the real beef why online games seem to be transforming teenagers en mass into crazed serial criminals – or are they? Could it be there is a darker force at work; are gaming firms surreptitiously hardwiring our kids without their knowledge? Could this be a global conspiracy of sorts?
A key to understanding how a benign pimply kid turns into the incredible hulk may very well be found in the DNA of how online games these days are conceptualize, built and tweeked these days – neither do you have to be a gaming expert (like Darkness); it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out, the vast majority of role playing games ALL have one thing in common; they ALL without a single exception see to reward players for killing police, villains and in some cases innocent bystanders. To spice up the game; gamers are rewarded in game play by their ability to make split second decisions as to what type of weapon they should use and how they should best deploy a killing strategy; as they maim, kill, set off explosions, and prime atomic bombs. Wonder no more, why as video games become more violent, violent teenager crime appears to follow suit. Could there be a link between game violence and real world crime? Or have we reached the point of no return? If so, how can we break the chain?…… This exploratory essay written by Harphoon and Astroboy has been withdrawn from general circulation due to measured response
“With due respect to the Confederation of Gamers; I do not believe, we can just fold our arms and pretend as if this whole matter is somehow removed from us – gentlemen, I ask again – is there a link between what has happened and gaming? Till today no one can answer this question. This is a matter of great concern Gentlemen. I believe all the serious men in this house will concur with me.
Do you hear me Gentlemen. We are in the serious business of growing an industry and I do not think we can cherry pick the good from the bad to make a happy case, just because it is convenient for us to do so - I think we may need a second look at this and perhaps even a third or fourth and fifth look – my point is we have certain obligations and responsibilities to the broader community at large and my feel is we will have to honor them and see these responsibilities through from end to end Gentlemen.
I move for a motion to direct the ASDF to look into this matter to see what we can do and should do.
Gentlemen, the sooner we look this matter squarely in the eyes and deal with it like responsible folk the better it is for all – besides history is stacked firmly against us; I tell you all. We cannot grow without responsibility. We cannot. I tell this house, we cannot and should not!”
Singaporedaddy – address to the 5oth meet of the Confederation in Munich -2010
November 16, 2010
The Fist of God (the legendry space fleet of the Brotherhood) will be arriving in the virtual in Dataran Merdeka at 0730 GMT / this will be a scheduled stop over before proceeding to the 50th Confederation meet in the virtual in Munich.
During our stop over in Malaysia; we will be handing over 3 Liberati class star cruisers to the Malaysian gaming federation – the KDD Alor Setar / KDD Perak and KDD Yap Ah Loy / to spice up the atmosphere – 3 other superclass Leviathans will be visiting the virtual in Kuala Lumpur – the KDD Munchen and her sister star cruiser the KDD Wilhem along side the new Russian Scientific Deep Space cruiser KDD ST.Petersburg - Please take time to board any of these space vessels in the virtual as this is the very first time that we are staging an open day for gamers – if this event goes well, this will be the first of many to follow, since so much interest is always expressed whenever the Fist of God makes a stopover.
Inaddition Darkness will be having a meet in Bangsar with some of our Malaysian readers – there are not many, just a couple of thousands; but he assures me that we can all fit somewhere for Roti Canai – Malaysia Boleh!
“I bring good news to our Malaysian Brothers and Sisters – please listen to me; we have by a stroke of fluke managed to secured 29 seats out of the 50 in the Confederation! This is historical. As it means we can now dictate the international agenda in the Confederation according to how and when we see fit - our diplomats have worked very hard to make this possible; you all have no idea how hard, they have worked – Lee Kuan Yew was dead wrong, when he once said that it’s an ”admirable sentiment,” to expect worthy men to volunteer without profit - let me tell you what I have seen with my two eyes so far in the Confederation. It is precisely because such a worthy enterprise will only be possible if both men and women see it as nothing other than an admirable sentiment, that is the only reason why these unusual things are possible.
Our diplomats have succeeded this time in the Confederation- we are reminded; one of our allies who have made this possible are Malaysians – so I will try to meet some of you in Bangsar, PJ, Pavillion in Bukit Bintang and wherever we may jam – however, let me be very honest with you; we do not have enough of us to split ourselves to be everywhere – so we must practical; but what I really want to say to you today – is today; every single one of you finally have a voice. And I Darkness what to hear what you have to say.”
Darkness Nov 2010 – the rest of this post has been withdrawn by order Measured Response
November 16, 2010
“Where were you the whole evening Darkness?”
“You know me, Harphoon…I am no good in a monkey suit.”
“No seriously. Where were you Darkness? I mean. It’s not every day I get elected into the Council of the wise of the Brotherhood.”
“Kid, trust me, it’s best this way.”
“I don’t care what the others say about you Darkness, we’ve always been buddies, that’s the only thing that matters to me.”
“Harphoon, me and the boys bought you a watch.”
“It’s a parting gift Councilman.”
“Don’t call me that Darkness. I am Harphy. Parting gift? What do you mean, where am I going?”
“I will never forget you Darkness. Never.”
“Take care Councilman.”
In memory of my friend Darkness – by Harphoon
November 16, 2010
The wise say. Respect should be earned. Not demanded. Well I guess you could demand for it; in the way a petulant child throws a tantrum. But…..This satiric piece written by Astroboy has been withdrawn from general circulation due to measured response.
There is an adage that those in power have always looked upon grudgingly; as I suspect, it will always remind them, those who they choose to control can never be fully controlled – “never get between a dog and his bone.”
This hardly requires any elaboration. People have always tolerated incredibly bad leaders and governments. They grumble, but rarely revolt. So what causes uprisings? The usual catalyst is the total breakdown of the food supply. Food has always been a central linchpin in every society. Ceremonies in all societies, from rain dances in North American to Inca bloodletting by the Aztecs, all point to man’s tenuous link with food and how much importance he assigns to the whole idea of food stability. This essay written by Astroboy and Scholarboy has been withdrawn from circulation due to Measured Response.
November 16, 2010
This interview was conducted on board the free French Starcruiser – Les Enfants Du Paradis between Harphoon and the head of the ASDF, Vollariane.
Harphoon: Thank you for having me Vollariane, before we begin, perhaps it’s a good idea to share with our audiences briefly what is the role of the ASDF.
Vollariane: May I just say, how please we are to see you again Harphoon. If memory serves the last time we met, it was during the Arullian affair – when you were running around with that crazy guy called Darkness. Since then I am glad that you have been appointed to the Presidium to skipper the Standing committee in Primus Aldentes Prime.
I hope you don’t mind Harphoon, if I begin by sharing with our audience, that you Harphoon happen to be the de facto head of the ASDF – as the ASDF is actually a creature wholly funded by the Presidium – going back to your question -let me say this, the ASDF is an advisory center that is used by the gaming community to make long term decisions – you could say we are the equivalent of the Boston Consulting Grp and the Kissinger & Associates of the Gaming world.
Harphoon: Thanks Vollariane. Can you share with us Vollariane whether some of our readers observations about Suu Kyi pursuing a policy of appeasement towards the junta is true? Could you explain the reason for this shift?
Vollariane: I wouldn’t go as far as to say, the Nobel Laurette is pursuing a policy of appeasement – one needs to understand this is a very specific term that denotes a very specific attitude.
And let’s try to put everything in perspective. This is still very much early days. However, what I will say is this: there has definitely been a shift. To exactly where this shift is headed and what speed; we need more time to ascertain these finer details.
And that shift points to a softening.
Harphoon: Can you give us all some examples of this “softening?”
Vollariane: We can see this is the language and parlance of Suu Kyi’s speech. Note, how she has jetissoned certain set pieces - the term “democracy,” has now been dropped for “rule of law.” To compliment this new attitude, there has even been a call for dialogue with the ruling junta and further discussions about lifting sanctions – what I think we may be seeing here Harphoon is a few possibilities – firstly, many in Suu Kyi’s camp who have previously place their trust in the hope that the UN will succeed as a mediator have come to terms with the reality – that by pursuing an antagonistic stance towards the junta; all they are really doing is perpetuating the rancour and mistrust. In other words, there is very little pay out in pursuing this strategy – so what we may be seeing here is a change in strategy; one that may even suggest Suu Kyi’s advisors have finally come to terms with the awful reality – they may have to collaborate with those who have nothing in common with them, ideologically or otherwise. I think all in all this represents a paradigm shift in the Suu Kyi camp.
Harphoon: Vollariane, what many gamers and our readers do not seem to understand is why is Burma so important in the gaming world?
Vollariane: I think to really understand the importance of Burma in the gaming scene. Two factors come into direct play; the first is geographic, it is for one situated in a strategic location that is able to communicate with two countries, the first is India and the second China. As you may know fiber optic cables do not run north and south in Burma; they need to….this seven page interview has been withheld from general circulation due to Measured Response.