Saturday, May 19, 2007

On The Road Again

We left South Florida this morning headed back to the beautiful mountains of Virginia and I emerged from the darkness of my partial estrangement from the Internet. After we stopped for the night I learned three interesting things that I hadn’t seen on TV news, first that “megastar” Leonardo DiCaprio not only believes Al Gore’s picture of reality re: global warming, but Leo also has committed his ideas to film, as his hero Al did.

Well that seals it: If both Al and Leo think man causes global warming, it must be true.

While I think that both the actor and the politician have no clue what they are talking about, I do at least give them credit for having the courage of their convictions, although these days it takes little courage to advocate for the man-causes-global-warming theory.

The second interesting thing is that Internet censorship is growing worldwide, and 26 out of 40 countries block or filter political or social content.

The OpenNet Initiative listed six countries as "pervasive" filterers of political information: Myanmar, China, Iran, Syria, Tunisia and Vietnam. They categorized seven countries, all of them Muslim, as "pervasive" social filterers: Iran, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

What do you suppose the misleaders of these countries fear from unfiltered Internet viewing by their subjects?

And finally I read that former President Jimmy Carter says President Bush's administration is "the worst in history" in international relations, criticizing Bush’s pre-emptive war and his Middle East diplomacy. The criticism from Carter also included Bush's environmental policies and the administration's "quite disturbing" faith-based initiative funding.

It is easy to understand Carter’s motivation, after all, he is almost universally regarded as the worst president in nearly every category in the modern era, and anything he can do to shift some of that heavy load elsewhere no doubt has great appeal to him. But I expected a former President of the United States to have more grace than that. And then I remembered that it is Jimmy Carter that we are talking about.

Well, starting sometime tomorrow I’ll be back home and back to, hopefully, an atmosphere that will allow me to get back to conducting blog business like I prefer to do it.

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