24 August 2008

everything is dangerous?

With having read David Weinberger's Everything is miscellaneous and now reading Clay Shirky's Here comes everybody, I was ready to read a lot into the news report on the 40th annual conference on "planetary emergencies" now finishing up in Erice, Sicily. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/24/world/europe/24sicily.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=erice%20global%20risks&st=cse&oref=slogin or search "erice global risks" at nytimes.com

It did resonate too because I'd been talking with Christie yesterday about our long-planned and -delayed trip to Sicily, with Erice on the map as I surveyed where we might camp out for a couple weeks as we roamed around Selinunte, Agrigento, Piazza Armerina, etc etc.

Back to the conference, this year's theme risks included cyberterrorism, climate change, nuclear weapons, and the energy supply. In one session, Hamadoun I. Touré of the International Center of Insect Physiology and Ecology in Nairobi spoke about pervasive computer use offering the prospect of a global knowledge society as well as making billions of individuals into potential superpowers. He is quoted as saying "Every single brain on earth is equal and can trigger an attack."

That report was in today's paper. Yesterday's op-ed page had a column by Bob Herbert on "Voters want more from Obama." A really interesting discussion of how Obama should let the folks in general know more about how when things are a mess, you need informed and reactive change. We're ready for some strong leadership that works FOR the people's needs other than jingoistic nationalism and America-first crap.

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