Archive for the 'USA' Category

History: Niall Ferguson – The 6 killer apps of prosperity

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We finally found some time to watch Niall Ferguson’s Ted Talks presentation with the “killer applications” he also describes in his latest book “Civilization The West and the Rest”

Niall Ferguson starts his presentation outlining his playing field, pointing us to the facts that more than 106 billion people have walked this planet and 94% of those are already dead. Out of those 106 billion 60% were or are Asian and most of them were or are very poor (shortening their life span / economic output). He then bridges over to explain the concept of the “Great Divergence“, that the majority of today’s wealth (US$195 Trillion) was made after 1800 by so-called Westerners and till today 66% of the world’s wealth is owned by these Europeans, North-Americans and Austral-Asians that only make up 19% of the world’s population…

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Humor: Stephen Colbert is preparing them

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In response to what was said by Mitt Romney during his “victory speech” on Tuesday in Florida, Stephen Colbert created the hashtag #PrepareThem on Twitter. As we all know Stephen will always try to help out when it comes to support the GOP with finding the perfect candidate…

The best quotes we’ve seen so far:
(Comedy alert — Comedy alert – politicians and yaysayers there is nothing to see here – carry on looking the other way)

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Opinion: ACTA – speaking out the unspeakable

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Kader Arif, the Rapporteur for the ACTA agreement in the European Parliament has today resigned over the issues he sees with the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (AKTA). To express his views and issues as a member of the European Parliament he issued the following statement on his blog (in French – English translation below) …

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Quote of the day: Internet regulations are like witchcraft

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The fact that there is no such thing as witchcraft didn’t stop them from burning a lot of “witches”. By the same token the ineffectiveness of the “remedy” is actually worse for us. It’s like the “five-year-plan” that produces no wheat that yields an even more drastic “five-year-plan” that also produces no corn …

Cory Doctorow @ 28C3 28-December-2011

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Internet: The Great Firewall of the USA – Stop SOPA before it is too late

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On November 16th, Congress is holding hearings on the first American Internet censorship system.

If this bill passes it certainly will be the worst piece of Internet legislation in American history. The House of Representatives opens hearings on SOPA soon, but has rejected all submissions and testimony from public interest groups and others who oppose the bill.

If this bill passes, the Internet and free speech will never be the same. And so will U.S. society and the Internet industry as a whole. In the U.S. where this industry in total is larger than energy, agriculture, communication, mining or utilities, this bill will put innovation and thousands of small to mid-size companies at risk….

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USA: Cutting GAO budgets a guaranteed way to waste even more

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Almost every western country is currently developing or has implemented plans to reduce administrative overheads and cost of government services. Often this happened by just reducing service levels and extent instead of looking for ways to spend the government money more wisely.

Sometimes such blunt tactics shed a light on the true intentions behind some of these “cost cuttings” – quick & dirty fixes, reduce social benefits and put even more pressure and fear into the majority of citizens.

Cost cuttings are seen across all areas of government services not stopping even with closing hospitals, fire services or massive cuts with other essential services.

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