March 25, 2005

"Clash of Civilizations" and Terry Schiavo

"Samuel P. Huntington is the Eaton Professor of the Science of Government and Director of the John M. Olin Institute for Strategic Studies at Harvard University. This article is the product of the Olin Institute's project on "The Changing Security Environment and American National Interests."[source]

Open up another browser window and do a Google search on Samuel P. Huntington's "Clash of Civilizations" from 1993. Now read it. The whole thing. In parts if you have to, but read it. It deals with how the fault lines of conflict have changed and are changing across the world since the end of the Cold War(which in the scheme of human history is not that long ago), and how the lines are being re-drawn by culture, rather than by princes, nation-states, or ideologies.

It relates today because of the changes that the office of the president has seemed to underwent since 2000 and the Terry Schiavo case. During this Bush administration, there has been more emphasis on morals and religious tackings than I can remember for any other presidency. He and his brother, Jeb Bush, have done most everything in their power to prevent a husband from removing the feeding tube of his wife who has been in a persistant vegitative state("Lights on, no one's home") for about 15 years, only to be rebuffed by the Supreme Court and other legal avenues.

The media on the Terry Schiavo case, in relation to Huntingtons "Clash of Civilizations", functions as a network of seismographs, giving definition as to where the fault lines lay on such an issue on the sanctity of life in the different cultures. CSM has an interesting article on different countries' reactions to the case.

Will someone go to war or commit a terrorist act because of this? I think and hope not, but it is issues similar to this(like Women on muslim holy ground during the Gulf War) that stoke some people into action. I will be interested to see how this event plays out amongst the American Party supporter lines and what rationale people will adopt when she passes away in the next couple of days.

Posted by Jeffrey at 10:37 PM | Comments (0)

March 6, 2005

Amity+Slackware == happy

After previous attempts to upgrade the HD and install different OS's, I have finally settled down to a rather plump install of Slackware 9.1. With an ultra compact mouse I borrowed from Tami's laptop or an optical at work, I can use Fluxbox with relative ease for browsing the web, email, coding, and downloading books from the Gutenberg project. However, there are still some things I would like to do with it.

The big thing has been wireless for quite some time now. Hell, I bet you can put spinners AND a wireless adapter on your toaster, so it can look like it's "toasting and coasting" and can also send you a text message to let you know that your toast is ready.

3COM makes a snazzy a/b/g adapter with an XJACK antenna that retracts to be flush with the housing when not in use. This would be wunderbar in the Amity, if it works with linux (model no. 3CRPAG175).

Also, the trackpoint on my keyboard has been busted for quite some time now and I haven't been able to find a replacement keyboard until I happened upon a site that had it for $45. That may be more than the little bugger's worth, but I dunno.

All of this has been in response to my hesitation to purchase one of the Mac mini's. These systems are awesome in the sense that you get an entire desktop machine for most everyday use(unless you're doing film or tons audio production) that consumes a max load of 28W, and that's when it's playing a movie. The downside is my concern that I wouldn't use it as much since it wouldn't be a primary machine.

So then I started thinking about a PowerBook or iBook. Both pretty solid systems, especially for what I'd use them for(non-desktop replacement roles), but then again, the amity with a wireless adapter(and maybe a memory upgrade) can do the same things for a fraction of the price, size, and weight. Then again, how much money do I really want to put into a 1997 laptop?

I'm just thinking aloud, seeking input. More entries not about the laptop to follow.

Posted by Jeffrey at 10:53 AM | Comments (0)