Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Lazarus and the pope (Yes! No capital letter)

This Sunday I was in church listening to an interesting pastor in the Swedish Missionskyrkan (link in english). He talked about The Parable of the rich man and Lazarus in the New Testament.
He talked about the poor man hungry, so weak he could not chase away the dogs licking his wounds, while the rich man was feasting not bothering. Well they both died and Lazarus came to Abraham and the other guy to a not so pleasant place. There he begged Lazarus to help him and warn his brothers. Abraham stopped him.
The Pastor talked about helping and giving if you afford it. have an open heart and so on. Very colorful and nice. The children listened. I liked it too, and started to think:
Who is one of the richest in the world? Well isn't it the pope in Rome? And, correct me if I'm wrong, doesn't he have millions of believers who trust in him? And a looooot of them live in very poor conditions. Did the pope miss the chapter in the Bible where Jesus is talking about Lazarus, or did he missunderstand it somehow? Or is he just joining the rich man? Oh no, I forgot: Character Indelible He has got the mark and are for ever forgiven (according to some old popes saying) for all his sins. So pope in Rome, you may sit and eat and drink whatever you want without thinking about the tenth and the poor people starving to death (sure they shall be happy in heaven).
You may also doom thoese people (especially the poor women) by forcing them to not use birth controll (like condoms) so that they risk to get HIV and also too many children that will throw them even deaper down in povertry. Well done, Ye oh holyness, didn't you understand that Humanea Vitae was a big mistake written by another misstake?

Enough of miserable thought now. If there is a God she/he will not listen to an old pope saying "I am forgiven, because I am a pope", but the God will follow its own rules and punish thoese who does wrong no matter what. Tooooo bad for you, Benedictus XVI! (Doesn't it look like the horns already have grown out on his head on this Wikipedia article? :-)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Wikipedia made a Constitution

The power of Wikipedia has showed itself again. In this Swedish article from the paper Ny Teknik they refere to Wikipedia "If 100 000 people can make an encyclopedia, why not make a constitution too". That was the thought of two internet-entrepreneurs in Morocco. They made a page during the night after the king's speach and got such a huge respond and comments that the king, Mohammed VI,  listened.
The statistics (in english) shows the respond. This is really wiki-love

Monday, October 17, 2011

Trade and the Environment

I happened to find an interesting article named Trade and the Environment. It is quite long therefor I didn't have time to read all, but one interesting point they say is the following:

According to WHO (World Trade Organization) a country is not allowed to to make a trade embargo against another country based upon environmental issues in the other country. The examples they gave was tuna fishing in Mexico and shrimps in Asia.

That is a pity, but we have an option. We, the consumers may stop buying the products that are not good for the environment or not good according to social aspects at the production place. If we changes our way of buying the producers are forced to follow us, and no government may force us to buy unhealthy things.
We may also organize us in organizations, like Fairtrade, or the neutral written wikipedia article about them.

Alone we are weak, but together we may change the world.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Take photos get gas.

The protests in Chile proceeds, and the police is geting worse against the protesters. I heard about a man who was taken by the police some days ago. His name is Francisco Maturana. A music teacher, father and freelancer (photographer). The right place to be as a photographer is where things are happening. This time he happened to be "the things", when the carabineros- the riot police, were not pleased to be captured on photos (is my guess).
They grabbed him, dragged the clothes of is upper part of the body and put a tear-gas gun in his pants. Why the .... (excuse the language) do something like that on a 55+ years old man with a camera? That is torture and could have been his death if he had a bad heart. Luckily he was not the only one there with a camera, and now the pictures are broadcasted all over Chile, and Mr Maturana is interviewed on Chiles biggest newspapers and television. This will be a big blow for the government, and as a student I hope this terrible thing will help the cause for better conditions for the students.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Chilean Winter

Strong student protests all winter in Chile. They want better economical situations, and demands that more public higher education schools are built, which have not been done for a long time although there have been an huge increase of students lately.

Sebastián Piñera, the president, has huge problems now, he is the worse evaluated president in the history of Chile, including the dictatorship (1973-1990), in terms of credibility and population trust. Much because of the student protests.  72% to 81% of Chileans support the student movement, so as a populist the choice should be easy for him: Listen to the students, they are the future of the country!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wikipedia Italy is on streik

From yesterday the italian Wikipedia started a strike (link works during the sreik)  for the freedom of information after the italian Parliament is debating a law that will force evry page on the internet to change facts about people if the person do not like it. The paragraph 29, explained in english and swedish on that link, do not make a third part jury controll if the fact is true or not, you are just forced to erase it and put the persons version instead.

This sounds like a law that suits everyone that have some kind of problems with the law, but do not want their 'mistakes' to be public. If it also is implemented on the newspapers Berlusconi will have a new powerful weapon to fight all the rumors about him.

This is a dangerous step towards controlling facts. The winner of a war uses to write the history, but with the internet even the loosers history have a chance to be seen and heard so that others can make their own oppinion on who was right and who was wrong. The fondation of wikipedia is freedom of speach freedom of facts. Therefor I support the italian Wikipedia in their fight against the paragraph 29
Swedish article one more article
Italian article

The streik is over, and the italians will be able to read wiki in italian again!! Link in english

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Snooping Bosses

“If you have nothing to hide, why do you worry?”, is a device often used by the authorities and companies that wants to have better surveillance of the community or the company. This is also what they indirect say in the article Snooping Bosses by Time, 3 Sept 2006. In some conditions I agree, when it is about the safety for the masses, but where should we draw the line when it is too much? Who should draw that line?

The government many thinks, because they are democratically elected. That might be true, and that's why we have the FRA-law in Sweden. A law that tracks everything on the internet and saves it “to be able to find criminals”. Treated correctly I'm sure it will work good, but who can assure that?

If we starts to look at the country the reportage is about, the USA. That is a so called democratic country which since the constitution was signed worked for equal rights and freedom of speech. Very nice and utopian thoughts, especially if you think of the great Thomas Jefferson, the principal author of the Declaration of Independence who fought for the freedom of the slaves, or? He had slaves himself! The Northern government were afraid that the South would separate and then they would loose much money and power. The question about slaves was just a part of the problem, which made it easier to get the farmers fight for them.
The freedom to have you own opinion never really occurred in the US. One hundred years later J Edgar Hoover got scared by Stalin and the Communism and started his secret COINTELPRO, to prevent people having an own opinion about freedom. A lot of workers were imprisoned after telephone surveillance and slipping your tongue saying a few non Capitalistic words.

The control of the masses by fear worked pretty well, but the US was not satisfied. They wanted a better and bigger experiment for their economically suppression of the workers, in the words of the Noble price winner Milton Friedman (1976), you would say The Miracle of Chile. He didn't act, himself but his students, the so-called Chicago boys. After some cooperation from CIA the military coup d'État in Chile 9/11 1973 was a truth. Once again control of the masses with the help of fear and communication surveillance helped the dictator and his Chicago Boys to make the economic experience, but that story is about something else. Even today they have passport controls while driving through the long country for “safety”. Everything is about controlling and keeping the power.

Almost thirty years later, 9/11 2001 the world entered another surveillance-era when president Bush started his war on terrorism by ordering other countries to follow his rules. To be able to have direct flights to the US they had to follow strict orders of how to control the travelers, in the name of safety. A lot of those rules are silly and annoying for the travelers, because if a real terrorist wants to do something he will easy find other ways to scare the great Nation of Freedom, like in Tom Clancy's The teeth of the Tiger.
Even the economical laws he implemented, forcing foreign countries banks to send facts about transaction to CIA, are horrible. Yes, I agree that the WTC attacks was terrible, but that does not give another country the right to interfere like that in the rest of the world, to try to control the people in other countries too.

After this long historical encounter of the Country of Freedom, to show what happens when a country uses the fear to justify more and harder controls of the masses, I shall come to a conclusion. Some kinds of control is good, not everyone are kindhearted, but where shall we draw the line? Shall we have a group of politicians and religious leaders discussing what values are good for the masses, and then implement it on us? I don't think so, because maybe I am not a believer of those religions and why should I then have to obey them?
The best is to look at the freedom of the people, not like they do in the US and look at the freedom of the companies. Sweden, with its FRA-law is not perfect, but it is way better than a country that tries to build in fear in the inhabitants to be able to make them to a new kind of slaves for the government and the companies. Where is the freedom then? We in Sweden are not allowed to let it be as bad as it is in The US.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Presentation of the blogger

My name is Harald, and I live in Sweden. I am a former teacher in math and science. I have worked as a teacher for 14 years in Sweden and one year in USA , in high school and in special education. During that time I also got three children, boys, who are 13, 12 and six years old. My partner also have two children age 12, so totally we have five children.

A year ago I decided to change career to get more time for my children and less negative stress as a teacher. Therefor I applied to KTH to the program och medical engineering. Now, the second semester, I need to get some extra points and therefor I applied to study technical english at the University in Karlstad. Even if it is not in my program I think it is very important to know the technical language and also have a grade in it when you work in that area.

During this course I have to start a blogg and do some assignments on it. Therefor I started my first blogg ever. I will probably use it to write some about other things than the assignments too.