Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Accidental Freedom

Cell phones have transformed rural Kenya, according to the BBCSamizdata notes that it is a revolution that people are comparing to the switch between dictatorship and democracy or the discovery of fire.

We watched a deeply impressed BBC reporter, Paul Mason, being told by a black lady, who I rather think may have been one of the authors of this report that indeed, mobile phones are having an impact upon Africa comparable to the switch from dictatorship to democracy - she mentioned other technology as well, like fire, the wheel and the railways - and that the mobile phone industry provided a model for progress in other areas of African life, such as education and healthcare. Her message to the governments of Africa: get out of the way, at let the business people do these things, and the people pay for these things, themselves.


Well said. A diplomat recently asked me to share thoughts about whether things had gotten better or worse in the Philippines, in which he had lived some time ago. I answered that there was some improvement and in practically every case -- overseas workers, the cell phone revolution, the subdivision of the city into mall-centered communities which have reduced vehicular traffic -- in every case, progress was attributable to the private sector not to the government.

Arnold Kling, writing in Tech Central Station, recently described the world as divided into three societal states: "Primitive orders are small bands of hunter-gatherers, and they are of little concern here. Limited-access orders are societies that provide meaningful political and economic rights only to narrow elites. Open-access orders are capitalist democracies that give political and economic rights to most citizens." Countries like Kenya and the Philippines are "limited-access orders", which Kling described in the following way:

A limited-access order allocates power in a way that keeps organized, potentially-violent groups satisfied. Those outside of the governing coalition have no access to political power or economic opportunity, and it is in the interest of the elites to keep it that way. 1) Control of violence through elite privileges. 2) Limits on access to trade. 3) Relatively strong property right protection for elites and relatively weak property right protection for non-elites. To the extent a natural state is characterized by the rule of law, it is for elites. 4) Restrictions on entry into and exit from economic, political, religious, educational, and military organizations. ...

A key insight ... is that the rulers of a limited-access order must restrict the rights of the masses. If everyone has economic and political rights, then the rulers have nothing special to offer to pacify would-be usurpers. Potential political competitors can only be bought off if they receive rights that are exclusive. But giving exclusive rights to one group necessarily entails restricting the rights of other groups. To say to the rulers of a limited-access order, "We insist that you get rid of corruption" is to ask them to commit political suicide.

Anyone familiar with Third World politics will recognize this situation immediately. Both the Left and the Right in the Third World are fundamentally parties of the elite. They both maintain that government is the solution to the country's problems and their only argument is over who should control the bureaucracy. But in either case their societies are characterized by de facto monopolies, huge but ineffective social programs, vast patronage systems, bloated and useless militaries and the belief that more of the same is better for the country. The cell phone revolution described by Samizdata is characteristic of a set of developments that, although they do not overthrow existing elites, render them partially irrelevant. Technology obsolesces the monopolies controlled by the elites, creates new paths to wealth that still remain uncontrolled and reduce the power of their meager patronage. But can "limited access" societies ever make the permanent jump to "open access"? Sometimes. Kling goes on to describe the "doorstep conditions" for societies seeking to make the transition.

1. rule of law for elites

2. perpetual life for organizations

3. political control of the military

In a country where even elites depend on personal relationships for personal and economic security, the first "doorstep condition" is not met. Think of Russia today, where even members of the wealthy oligarchy can be summarily stripped of rights by the head of state. On the other hand, in Great Britain in the period just prior to the full advent of democracy, elites developed an expectation that due process of law would apply to them.

Perpetual life for organizations means that there exist corporations or other institutions that can be expected to outlive their key members. If there are no such organizations, then that means that every organization is held together by personal loyalty. Once people see an organization as living beyond its current leaders, they begin to support contractual relationships with that organization. When the government starts to provide a legal framework to protect contractual relationships, a key element of open-access orders is in place. NWW argue that in order for any organization within a state to have perpetual life, the state itself must have perpetual life. If all of a ruler's legal rulings are subject to nullification when the ruler dies, then that condition is not satisfied.

Political control of the military requires that there be no independent organizations with a capacity for large-scale violence. Lebanon, where Hezbollah is an independent military force, clearly does not enjoy political control of the military. On the other hand, if a single faction takes control of the military, that is not NWW's definition of political control of the military. Instead, such a regime is a military dictatorship.

Kling argues that some societies are ready to make the jump, but regretfully concludes that others (like Iraq), lack what it takes. But whoever may be ready, it's clear that creating the "doorstep conditions" would would be unwelcome to the movers and shakers in a Third World, limited access society. It is maintenance of inequality; the continued existence of "special treatment", private militias, personalized control over violence which provides the basis for the power of the few over the many. The high living Third World aristocrats that the American Left loves to revile would as soon give up their control of judges as the drug-rich revolutionaries they profess to love would surrender their instruments of "revolutionary" violence. Between these two sets of elites, neither of who can imagine a world without a vanguard and the masses -- though their terminology may differ -- the ordinary person must make a living as best he can. The cell phone story in Kenya represent a liberation moment that neither elite had intended to offer them. And they will endeavor to close it out. To some extent, blogs perform the same function as cell phones. They are little "first Amendment machines" in countries in which neither the latifundistas nor the "guerilleros" have any use for the real notion of freedom of speech. It's not surprising that some countries in Latin America are trying to regulate them. The cell phone in Kenya represents an earnest in freedom, not its full payment. It is a glimpse at a world forbidden, a reminder of what we were meant to be. Not the "masses" but men. "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." Dangerous words spoken by true revolutionaries.

27 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

In the European middle ages, the opposite side of the elightenment, which is oft ignored, was the rise of a liberal economic model, particularly in the Northwest part of the continent. It was the powerless and the marginalized who became the merchants who lead the way, and perhaps the same is occuring today in those third-world corners where the elite enjoy fuedal-like control over the resources, but have no control over the imagination of their 'subjects.'

1/09/2007 06:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bravest Advice:

BEFORE President Bush had tomorrow night's speech about Iraq crafted, it might have helped a bunch to listen to Danny Swift.
Danny is no politician - just a New York City firefighter who had the living daylights blown out of him before losing two comrades, including Chris Engledrum, and saving two others outside Baghdad on Nov 29, 2004.

"I hope there is a change in strategy, a big, big change in strategy," said Danny, who has been back at Ladder 43's firehouse for 10 months after recovering from shrapnel wounds.
"For a start, let's forget cut and run - but also let's have the best military in the world allowed to perform like the best military in the world," he told me yesterday.

"Twenty-thousand ex- tra troops won't make a dent under the disheveled and disorganized practice of the rules of engagement, which are a joke....

"You have to let the military do their job."
Are you listening, President Bush?
steve.dunleavy@nypost.com

1/09/2007 06:59:00 PM  
Blogger Meme chose said...

"Anyone familiar with Third World politics will recognize this situation immediately. Both the Left and the Right in the Third World are fundamentally parties of the elite. They both maintain that government is the solution to the country's problems and their only argument is over who should control the bureaucracy. But in either case their societies are characterized by de facto monopolies, huge but ineffective social programs, vast patronage systems, bloated and useless militaries and the belief that more of the same is better for the country."

Even though I have lived in the third world, the country which immediately springs to mind when I read this (and I've lived there too) is France.

1/09/2007 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

Excerpted from
January 15, 2007 Issue
The American Conservative
Fragmented Future
Multiculturalism doesn _ t make vibrant communities but defensive ones.
In
America, you don _ t need to belong to a family-based mafia for
protection because the state will enforce your contracts with some
degree of equality before the law. In Mexico, though, as former New York Times correspondent Alan Riding wrote in his 1984 bestseller Distant Neighbors: A Portrait of the Mexicans,
_ Public life could be defined as the abuse of power to achieve wealth
and the abuse of wealth to achieve power. _ Anyone outside the extended
family is assumed to have predatory intentions, which explains the
famous warmth and solidarity of Mexican families. _ Mexicans need few
friends, _ Riding observed, _ because they have many relatives. _

Mexico is a notoriously low-trust culture and a notoriously unequal
one. The great traveler Alexander von Humboldt observed two centuries
ago, in words that are arguably still true, _ Mexico is the country of
inequality. Perhaps nowhere in the world is there a more horrendous
distribution of wealth, civilization, cultivation of land, and
population. _ Jorge G. Castaсeda, Vicente Fox _ s first foreign minister,
noted the ethnic substratum of Mexico _ s disparities in 1995:

The
business or intellectual elites of the nation tend to be white (there
are still exceptions, but they are becoming more scarce with the
years). By the 1980s, Mexico was once again a country of three nations:
the criollo minority of elites and the upper-middle class, living in
style and affluence; the huge, poor, mestizo majority; and the utterly
destitute minority of what in colonial times was called the Republic of
Indians &

Castaсeda
pointed out, _ These divisions partly explain why Mexico is as violent
and unruly, as surprising and unfathomable as it has always prided
itself on being. The pervasiveness of the violence was obfuscated for
years by the fact that much of it was generally directed by the state
and the elites against society and the masses, not the other way
around. The current rash of violence by society against the state and
elites is simply a retargeting. _

These deep-rooted Mexican attitudes largely account for why, in
Putnam _ s _ Social Capital Community Benchmark Survey, _ Los Angeles ended
up looking a lot like it did in the Oscar-winning movie _ Crash. _ I once
asked a Hollywood agent why there are so many brother acts among
filmmakers these days, such as the Coens, Wachowskis, Farrellys, and
Wayans. _ Who else can you trust? _ he shrugged.

1/09/2007 08:11:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

Alas,the geniuses who live in 747 Jets have decided that the USA should be more like Mexico rather than vice versa.

1/09/2007 08:13:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

What's needed is real leaders and real leadership in the third world. People that can come from these cultures and lead in the name of freedom and rule of law.

You'd think that if a scumbag like Castro could lead a bunch of ragtag militias out of the mountians in the name of socialism 50 years ago that in some third world countries today some real leaders could emerge from the mountains and lead their countries to a better future in the name of freedom, democracy, and the rule of law.

The problem is that the new leaders turn out to be just like the old leaders. Trying to steal everything they can before they have to run.

1/09/2007 09:45:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dr. Thomas Barnett on Chapter One of the Pentagon's New Map.

TB: Well, there’s always the question of pace. I mean, we like to think of globalization as a foreign policy issue. But globalization is really a question of domestic politics and domestic economics. It’s about how much you’re going to open yourself up to outside forces, because as you do that, those outside forces naturally have a tendency to exert more influence and power over your country than you can possibly exert over that larger process. It’s a fairly comfortable process for a country like the United States, because we’re such a huge domestic market.
But if you look at even a place like China, the amount of change going on in a situation like that, Argentina, Brazil, what’s going on in Europe, it asks for a willingness to let social interactions, and economic models, be dramatically redefined. There’s a tendency to say either you go fast like the Americans, and try to create more winners than losers, or there’s a sort of go slow approach that the Europeans advocate, limit the number of losers, and on that basis, accept more social harmony at the price of a slower growth rate.
But I think in the future, what we’re going to find is that the countries that have most recently joined the global economy, the ones that are experiencing the most change, are going to give us insights as to how fast countries can adapt themselves to globalization. And the bad part of it is, by most people’s definition, is that most countries are going to be able to open up to globalization by maintaining themselves in a social order sense, by having a single party state. And if you think about it, that’s how most of them have done it.
---
HH: Now is it your position that we ought, as a grand strategy, to be pursuing globalization, and thus greater connectivity, at economics first, and then wait for the flowering of democracy at countries’ own time?

TB: Right. I mean, my trinity is, I define it now, is it’s connectivity first, okay? Get the economic connectivity, connect the masses of any country to the outside world. The second order of business has to be, and we’re seeing this, I think, in the long war, reciprocity. There needs to be freedom of religion, okay? And democracy tends to follow, I would argue, after those two preconditions have been met. And you’re going to have to accept that globalization when it comes in, and that first economic connectivity, it’s going to come with a lot of Pollutus content, as far as the locals are concerned. So it’s going to be natural for them to reach for, you know, taboo based controls over content. And they want their MTV, they’re just not sure they want Britney Spears naked staring at them.
- - - - -
HH: Before I get to your calls and questions, one more definitional issue, Dr. Barnett.
TB: Sure.
HH: What are rule sets? And why are they changing?
TB: Well, my use of the term rule set is just a way of kind of bundling up the notion that that…for any activity, you know, human life, American football, the U.S. legal system, how you run a business, there are rules connected to that activity. Some of them are formal, the ones that get written down, some of them are informal, the kind of conventional wisdom and the insider knowledge that everybody has. And what I argue is, when rule sets get out of whack in the world, that’s when you have security issues and danger, and you tend to have war, to kind of, in many ways, seek equilibrium.
My definition of the 90’s, and in effect, what went wrong with it, what it got us, sort of the 9/11 shock to the system, is that economic rule sets raced ahead of political rule sets. And technological rule sets raced ahead of security rule sets. We connected up the world as a whole in terms of economics and technology and networks faster than our political understanding and our security understanding could keep pace.

And so vulnerabilities were created. An extreme vulnerability was revealed, for example, on 9/11, in terms of a very deliberate attack against our infrastructure. And what it did was not only create the damage on the ground right there, 9/11, New York City, Washington, D.C., but it sent huge repercussions, such repercussions throughout our systems in terms of the psychic damage, and the sense of vulnerability created, that we created, in effect, a rule set reset. We said oh my God, we don’t have enough rules in this area and that area, so we started making rules like crazy, very fast. We slapped one together domestically. We call it the Patriot Act. And Bush proposed one internationally. He called it the law of preemption, in effect, okay? And both of them were trying to define a new minimum standard for stability.

1/09/2007 10:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The House and Hugh catch up with where our discussion here was some time ago.
---
Sandy Berger: Far Worse Than We had Been Led To Believe
The release of the Berger Report by the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform changes that understanding, and makes the decision by the Department of Justice to give Berger the slightest of wrist taps inexplicable.
The report's executive summary is all you need to read.
---
The only real Patriot-Hero in the Administration so far has been John Ashcroft, imo.
Without him, Justice is back to being virtually worthless.

1/09/2007 10:54:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

Before you get too excited over the future of globalism -- its best to have a look at the USA video presentation

Census bureau info is used to give a clear presentation of what the current and demographic future looks like.

1/09/2007 11:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm with you, Charles.
But then my paycheck doesn't come from DC.
Rush seems to think the GOP will fold and give GWB his dream of Mexico Norte.
...the once great USofA.
Given away in our lifetimes.
And some still respect the man.

1/10/2007 12:52:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don’t know that anyone was thinking that we might have to watch Muslim-on-Muslim violence play out in our own home towns, as this story in Detroit indicates.

Late Saturday night, 12 Muslim businesses and mosques were vandalized, with 11 of the 12 belonging to members of the Detroit Shi’a population. None of the targeted buildings were owned by Irai-American Christians or members of the Lebanese community. It is suspected that the atacks were in retaliation to the celebrations seen in the streets at the news of Saddam Hussein’s execution.

While so far there have been no Shi’a reprisal attacks on Sunni businesses and mosques, it is a realistic fear among Muslims and non-Muslims alike. The potential for more deadly attacks certainly exists if such tension escalates.
main-street-fallujah/

1/10/2007 12:54:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Doug, you really need to control your BDS. You just fail to recognise genius. I do not understand your failure to comprehend the thinking, planning and execution of the President's plan. Where is Sonia?

1/10/2007 03:02:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

In his speech tonight, President Bush will acknowledge flawed rules of engagement. Article quoted in bold below:

In his speech, Bush was to acknowledge that mistakes have been made, Bartlett said.

"The president will say very clearly tonight that there were mistakes with the earlier operations, that it did not have enough Iraqi troops or U.S. troops, that the rules of engagement — the terms in which our troops would actually conduct these operations — were flawed," Bartlett said.



Bush To Admit Mistakes

1/10/2007 06:36:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1/10/2007 07:11:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Looks like President Bush's speech won't be enough to do it. epublican Senators are starting to cave in, so Nancy Pelosi is running the war now.

This is Bush's fault for refusing to consult with his own party, and for letting the Democrats control the media for three months.

Quote from article in bold:

Republican officials told the Times at least 10 GOP senators were likely to oppose the plan to increase troops levels in Iraq.
One of them is Sen. John Warner, R-Va., who told the newspaper in an interview the battle lines in Iraq were becoming too blurry to justify more troops.
"I'm particularly concerned about the greater injection of our troops into the middle of sectarian violence," he said. "Whom do you shoot at, the Sunni or the Shiite?"


Article

1/10/2007 07:19:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmo said...

Back on topic . . .

We shouldn't be surprised by something like this. Nor should we be surprised that it would appear novel to a BBC 'reporter'.

By any objective standard of measurement -- life expectancy, infant mortality, literacy, poverty reduction -- more progress occurred during the past 50 years than in the previous 500, largely the result of increased commerce and trade.

Development aid and NGO activity has operated at the margins. Tranzi-progressive statists simply have nothing to compare to the Japanese, South Korean, post-war Western Europe and other success stories of free market democracy.

And while capitalism and democracy can be hobbled and subverted by corruption, this is always the fate utopian management schemes.

1/10/2007 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

Back in the early 80's a few far-seeing thinkers pronounced the USSR as being in Big Trouble. The Soviet style to totalitarianism was clearly incompatible with the coming computer age.

I think it was Jerry Pournelle who said that if you have one country where it is illegal to own an unlicensed mimeograph machine and another country in which you can gather, process, and transmit as much data as you can afford to - then who will end up "burying" who?

The fear was that the USSR would use it's superiority in conventional "Industrial Age" weapons before they could be obsoleted by the Information Age. People spoke of a "Window of Opportunity" for the Soviets to take action.

Desert Storm proved that window had closed - and the USSR folded up later that year.

So is that what the War on Terror is about? That the Facists of the Third World do not want to make the same mistake as did the Soviets?

1/10/2007 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger Charles said...

So is that what the War on Terror is about?
////////////
The moslems cannot invent anything to solve the problems that the 20th century solutions created. But the moslems can conjure.

So while we invent. They conjure. (Jihad loosely means to struggle.) We will come up with technological & political solutions for which they will want to take some spiritual credit. Its greasy biz. The initial war aims of the islamo fachists were fueled by oil. It will also be the decliniing power of oil over time that shifts their ambitions. A saudi once said of oil men. He couldn't tell if they were fighting or f-cking.

For our part we're just keeping the lid on until the technological solutions come.

1/10/2007 08:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Utopia Parkway said, "The problem is that the new leaders turn out to be just like the old leaders. Trying to steal everything they can before they have to run."

In America they steal everything they can from the next generation before they have to run. It's called deficit spending.

1/10/2007 10:11:00 AM  
Blogger Charles said...

The election was absolutely not about "corruption and ethics" except to the extent that the dems used the issue to club republicans. You can see that in the stand up ovation the house black caucus gave to Representative Jefferson, the earlier re election of Ray Nagin of New Orleans and the reelection of Barny Frank. Its the particular genius of the democrats to figure out what makes them most despicable and attribute that to the republicans.

The greatness of Jesus is that he attribues his righteousness to everyone who believes in him. The reason for the greatness of this is that the ghastly diabolical nature of man is do just the opposite. Man tends to impute his own evil to others.(And the French have been doing this regularly since Rousseau gave them a methodology. Both the communists and the democrats have mastered the art of imputed evil as well.)

We desperately need a savior.

Nor is this is over the top. Rush Limbaugh said his impression is that conservatives are going to cave on illegal immigration. The reason this is so critical is that this is not the second chance for conservatives to get things right. This is their last chance.

The election was not about ideology. Bush governed from the center left and yet it was not the left/center left
republicans who were bumped by the elections. As the stats show it was mostly right and center right republicans who took fall for the presidents policies. Once again there was some very successful blame shifting going in -- even within the republican party.

Here are the ACU Ratings of Republican Incumbents Who Lost in the House according to the voting scorekeeper American Conservative Union:

Jim Ryun (KS) - ACU rating 98
J.D. Hayworth (AZ) - ACU rating 98
Richard Pombo (CA) - ACU rating 97
Chris Chocola (IN) - ACU rating 95
Gil Gutknecht (MN) - ACU rating 94
Charles Taylor (NC) - ACU rating 92
Mike Sodrel (IN) - ACU rating 92
Melissa Hart (PA) - ACU rating 91
John Hostettler (IN) - ACU rating 90
Don Sherwood (PA) - ACU rating 87
Anne Northup (KY) - ACU rating 86
Clay Shaw (NC) ACU rating 82
John Sweeney (NY) ACU rating 77
Jeb Bradley (NH) ACU rating 71
Charles Bass (NH) ACU rating 71
Curt Weldon (PA) ACU rating 70
Sue Kelly (NY) ACU rating 65
Mike Fitzpatrick (PA) ACU rating 60
Nancy Johnson (CT) ACU rating 47
Jim Leach (IA) ACU rating 43



Vacated Republican seats lost

DeLay (TX) ACU rating 95
Beuprez (COL) ACU rating 93
Green (WI) ACU rating 88
Nussle (IA) ACU rating 86
Ney (OH) ACU rating 86
Foley (FLA) ACU rating 78
Koly (AZ) ACU rating 74
Boelert (NY) ACU rating 40


Democrat Incumbent seats lost

None.


+++

Republican Incumbents Who Lost in the Senate:

Burns (MT) - ACU rating 91
Allen (VA) - ACU rating 92
Santorum (PA) - ACU rating 88
Talent (MO) - ACU rating 93
DeWine (OH) - ACU rating 80
Chafee (RI) - ACU rating 37


Democrat Incumbent seats lost

None.


I'm not saying that there was any collusion between republicans and democrats as to who would win and lose. What I am saying is 1.) There are some smart operators now in the democratic party including Begala and Soros. 2.)There is continuity of elite opinion across party lines that illegal immigration is ok. Elite democrats think they get cheap votes and elite republicans think they get cheap labor.

And there you can see what the 2006 elections were about. They were about doing a structural realignment of voters on the same scale as happened in the early 1960's when Johnson's great society began to shift the south out of its solid alignment with the democrats.

The democrats want to make the structural realignment de jure.

How? By bringing millions of illegals onto the voting rolls to vote democratic. Once that happens the conservatives will no longer have the ability to affect the national agenda at the polls. Consequently, abortions stay legal. Sodomites unite. The internal collapse of the west continues unabated.

I think the abolishion of birthright citizenship is a good start--as a way to make the USA less attractive to illegals. But I also think that the "compromise" does not involve making illegals legal but rather to make Mexico more attractive. That would involve extending loan guarantees to the federales exclusively to fund more pemex oil drilling. (currently they're are lootinge pemex to fund government spending so pemex only gets half the investment they need to fuel oil production. So consequently oil production is falling--and falling fast. Therefor the federales are pushing more illegals north to get their revenue.(Bush would think the loan guarantee a good idea since he is collapsing Iranian oil production.)

The second thing is to announce that the US policy is to collapse the cost of water desalination and transport thereby making it economically possible to turn the deserts of Mexico green and triple the effective size of that country. The Mexicans will need their people back. They'll come back with skills.

The third thing is to put the US solidly behind the work of Hernando de Soto's ILD. Only about 65% of the Mexican GNP is part of the formal economy. The rest is informal. They don't have very good formal property recognition in Mexico. De Soto's organization works to formalize third world economies so as to release their productive capacity and increase their value. The first chapter of de Soto's book The Mystery of Capitaldoes a good job of illuminating de soto's ideas.

The current elite solution to "harmonizing" Mexican and American economies is to dumb the USA down. The better solution is to brighten Mexico up and send them now well trained workers to do the job.

1/10/2007 11:00:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"
1.) There are some smart operators now in the democratic party including Begala and Soros.

2.)There is continuity of elite opinion across party lines that illegal immigration is ok.
"
---
As the Berger "Investigation" shows, there is a continuity of the shadow government with the elite being given a pass for what others pay dearly for.
I believe it was Noel Hillman that pronounced Bergler's crimes not worthy of serious consideration. He was chief of the Justice department's Office of Public Integrity. In the midst of the Abraham investigation, he was pulled off when GWB appointed him for a Federal Judgeship. He moved on, as does Bergler.
This morning Rush spoke of an FBI investigation into leaks to the media had to be abandoned when other sections of the FBI refused to co-operate!
---
OUR Freedoms weren't accidental, and they are not *accidentally* being thrown away.

1/10/2007 11:48:00 AM  
Blogger Evanston said...

Christianity provides fertile soil for all three cultural factors: 1. rule of law for elites 2. Perpetual life for organizations 3. Political control of the military. See Romans chapter 13 and 1 Peter chapter 4. It is no coincidence that christian cultures, particularly those that rely exclusively on the Bible (not "tradition" or the "infallibility" of clergy) have been most successful in becoming "open access orders." Of course, optimal use is always achieved when you read the Manufacturer's Instructions.

1/10/2007 11:48:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...as the rule of law for the elites goes up in smoke under the watchful eyes of our Laissez-Faire Weather Christian.

1/10/2007 11:55:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Abramoff" not Abraham!
...although the corruption is Biblical.

1/10/2007 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger Roderick said...

"""Utopia Parkway said...
What's needed is real leaders and real leadership in the third world. People that can come from these cultures and lead in the name of freedom and rule of law."""

This is a nice sentiment, but the problem is that people who's preoccupation is with personal freedom or being left alone to earn a living or even run a business don't usually have armed militias. Iraq is full of decent, earnest people to whom Islam and politics are only peripheral to their daily lives. These people have no power.

1/10/2007 12:53:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Bush Plan Outline

They released an outline of the new Bush plan. It very clearly is based on the US Army's new counterinsurgency manual. For example, most of the key points listed below such as "protect the population" and "isolate the extremists" are core principles of the Army strategy.



The President's New Iraq Strategy Is Rooted In Six Fundamental Elements:

Let the Iraqis lead;
Help Iraqis protect the population;
Isolate extremists;
Create space for political progress;
Diversify political and economic efforts; and
Situate the strategy in a regional approach.

1/10/2007 02:20:00 PM  
Blogger Jonathan Siberry said...

I agree technology can help things move forward, whether in third world countries or our own.

That is possibly one of the reasons they are third world countries (the lack of technology). Technology makes things runs smoother and faster and overall more efficient, from the farmer with the new combine harvester to the web business manager with a 14mb connection.

Those who have technology can produce more product, make more money etc than those without which ultimately leads to a more wealthy country which in turn increases quality of life.

A great example is the USA verses Iraque. the USA has the most technology and is one of the wealthiest countries in the world. Iraque is not and has less technology.

I run a small vehicle salvage company which sels vehicle salvage to customers. Several vehicle salvage i break down for car parts. All of this would not be possible without technology such as mobile phones, internet access, online banking etc.

1/17/2007 04:03:00 AM  

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