Thursday, June 03, 2004

Additions to the Blogroll

  • Stratfor:  I used to read their weekly geopolitical intelligence reports, then somehow got out of the habit.  They are a great source of information, enough so that they get a featured link.

Iraq, Iran and Saudi Arabia
Jun 03, 2004

By George Friedman


The United States has clearly entered a new phase of the Iraq campaign in which its relationship with the Iraqi Shia has been de-emphasized while relationships with Sunnis have been elevated. This has an international effect as well. It obviously affects Iranian ambitions. It also helps strengthen the weakening hand of the Saudi government by reducing the threat of a Shiite rising in strategic parts of the kingdom that could threaten the flow of oil. The United States is creating a much more dynamic and fluid situation, but it is also enormously more complicated and difficult to manage.

  • I-Merge:  Oddly named, but what else is new in the Blogosphere?  This is a blog with interesting illustrations and .
My most recent essay is now online (in blog form) for those who have the time and interest in a summary of the development of modern globalisation, the predicament it presents and the some trite options for the future. You are also keenly encouraged to provide any constructive feedback what so ever, as I will be collecting these comments and rolling them into the next draft, hopefully for a more traditional publishing exercise;)

Government’s job in the 21st century is to restore the balance between the commons and the market that grew so distorted in the 20th century. This can be done without raising taxes or expanding bureaucracy.

What might America look like with a healthy balance between commons and market? Here are some glimpses:

• A market sector that pays its way
Polluters and other commons users pay for usage rights. Pollution, advertising and congestion are reduced. More money flows to common purposes, without higher taxes.

• A stronger democracy
Spectrum fees cover most electoral campaign costs. Fewer elected officials are indentured to monied interests.

• A culture of popular participation
An open Internet hosts diverse commons and provides access to other media. There are shorter copyrights and new legal vehicles for sharing creativity. Funding flows to the arts, non-commercial radio and TV.

• Science in the public interest
University research focuses on common needs. Most discoveries remain in the public domain.

• Every baby a trust fund baby
Everyone receives, as a birthright, a cash inheritance and yearly dividends. This income comes from rent charged for use of scarce common assets. The commons thus becomes a source of sustenance for all, as it was in pre-industrial days.

Some of the reasons why I love am fond of the Internet.