Brian Micklethwait's Blog

In which I continue to seek part time employment as the ruler of the world.

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Monday September 06 2010

My problem (one of my problems) is that I accumulate open windows, to things I don’t want to forget about, and which I am hence reluctant to shut.  But these open windows, and all the advertising shite they come with, clog up my computer, or so it feels to me.

Now I am sure there is a better answer to this problem than the one that follows, but for now, my answer, today, is to stick a few such links here, where they won’t vanish in half a day and where anyway I know my way around.

The Web Is Dead. Long Live the Internet.  Note, incidentally, the disastrous headline punctuation. Punctuation in headlines says you can’t have a full stop at the end of a headline, but that you can have whatever punctuation you like in the middle of the headline, fullstops included.  Bizarre.  (Not that that’s why the piece interests me.)

That Codevilla piece about the American ruling class.  Actually I think a major part of this story is that it isn’t only the American ruling class.  It’s a global, or at least beyond national, class.  The entire West that was is starting to be ruled by a united gang of interconnected people.  Rulers of The World Unite.  You have nothing to lose but the love of your dreary little voters.  (To “love”, should I add “consent”?)

On the Validity and Necessity of Atheist Criticism of Islam.  I like Edmund Standing a lot.  Mostly I agree with this.  But, I think he makes too little of the differences between Christianity and Islam.  Christianity is bonkers but Islam is downright evil.  (Although, I do admit that Christian anti-semitism is deeply embedded in it.) The problem I have with Islam is not only that it is so false.  It is that it so nasty.  Allah does not exist, but if Allah does exist he should be opposed.  This is somewhat less true of the various Christian versions of God, especially nowadays.

The Vanity Fair Sarah Palin piece.  I want to read this to see if it actually says anything more than: she’s a politician!  Is she going to run for President?  If she gets to be President will she be a quite good one, as Reagan (won the Cold War - only talked about stopping the US state spending rise) was.  Will President Palin, that is to say, actually stop the US state spending rise?

The Chinese state media global offensive.  Were a time traveller from a hundred years hence to invite me to guess what sparked the Big War of 2037, I’d guess China versus someone, rather than Islam versus anyone.  Islam has the will to Big War, but looks unlikely at all soon to command the means to wage it.  (I include Iran in that judgement.  There is more to having a Bomb than just having a Bomb.  You must also have the means to attack the other guy’s Bomb, and to defend your remaining Bombs, which you must also have.) And I have long believed that being able to fight wars is more important in their causation than merely wanting to.  I mean, few great powers unambiguously want to fight major wars, because they have too much to lose.  But, from time to time, they still did, and might one day again.  Hopefully The Bomb will continue to work its terrifying magic, and Great Wars Between Great Powers will continue to not happen, but how long will that last?

I want to do a Big Piece on Samizdata about all that, Real Soon Now.  Globalisation as we now know it, i.e. the version where we don’t fight global wars against one another, is more caused by The Bomb (which first happened in 1945) than by Modern Electronic Communications (which first happened in 1842).  See Global Ruling Class, uniting of, above.

That should clear out my computer’s tubes a little.

Now I am sure there is a better answer to this problem than the one that follows, but for now, my answer, today, is to stick a few such links here, where they won’t vanish in half a day and where anyway I know my way around.

The Web Is Dead. Long Live the Internet.

Perhaps the Web isn’t quite dead then?

Posted by Michael Jennings on 06 September 2010

If you use Firefox, it’s worth glancing at the plug in called Zotero.

http://www.zotero.org/

Posted by Peter Risdon on 08 September 2010

Re WW3: Sting wrote a song called “The Russians”, a line from that song is “I hope the Russians love their children too”, the realization that the USSR is full of people just like us who want the same things, including the desire to continue living.

The war preventing concept of MAD only exists if both sides want to survive in part after an exchange. The theocracy of Iran, and other Islamic nations, do not share this desire, they “love death more than we love life”. The idea of a post apocolyptic survival is not on their radar, you only have to read about Ahmadinejad’s musing on the return of the Madhi to actually realise he’s working towards a one-sided armageddon.

The biggest danger today is an Islamic nation turning itself into a huge nuclear armed suicide bomber, all the threats in the world wont stop it.

Posted by Ian on 10 September 2010

I don’t think that the subjugation of Iran, if that is what turns out to be needed, will count as a “major war between great powers”.  Nor do I think it will involve all that many people dying, in Iran or anywhere else.  I think that once Ahmadinejad probably has his Bomb and a plausible means of delivering it, then if Ahmadinejad continues to say lots of crazy things (which I did know about), even when threatened with immediate and severe regime destruction, then some combination of the US/Israel coalition will duly destroy his regime.  Like with Saddam Hussein.  They’ll bomb the daylights out of his Bombs and his army (but not his people other than in quite small collateral type numbers), and then invade and take him out.

In my opinion this was (a) one of the reason they invaded Iraq, and (b) the reason why quite a substantial number of US forces will be remaining in Iraq, not enough to continue to rule Iraq, but enough to threaten Iran.

Like I say, not a major war.  More like busting a hostage situation by sending in the SAS.

After Iran has been taken out, with whatever anti-climactic fuck-ups follow, Iraq and Afghanistan style, there will be the usual recriminations from the recriminating classes, many no doubt quite well deserved, especially if they try to “nation build”, again.  But it will still be done, I think.

Crucially, if the US seems to lack the will, Israel will supply it, because if they don’t, it won’t take a “major war between great powers” for them to be ruined.

Thanks for making me think some more about this.  I am definitely open to persuasion that I am being too optimistic about this.

Posted by Brian Micklethwait on 10 September 2010

You’re right that a “great war” in the classical sense wont happen, not even involving China, because the stakes are too high and MAD still applies, China has yet to have an effective second strike capability (nuke subs), they’re still developing first strike (!)

Whilst nuke delivery from Iran may seal their destruction a la Iraq/Afghanistan, it will still put a few devices on various countries (no guesses who gets the first one), which in terms of devastation will knock any “great war” into small potatoes.

The problem is it cannot be conceivably prevented, perhaps it needs a radical rethink on the ideology behind Iran’s motives, in terms of confronting it not giving into it all the time, that will be a huge movement in liberal thinking.

Alternatively, the development of ABM technology may seal the fate of the nuclear missile, already big lasers are shooting down rockets and mortars, further orbital research may make ICBMs redundant.

Power projection is one of America’s goals, but to be able to strike anywhere in the world has meant a huge operational headache, either establishing bases on foreign soil, or sending expensive aircraft carrier groups everywhere. Development of hypersonic engines would allow transit to anywhere in the world in 30 minutes from a home base, plus increasing use of unmanned drones, will eventually give America the ability to command even where it is not present, this can curtail any enemy activity very quickly.

But the final nail will only come when the evil ideologies are defeated. Possible ? The world saw off slavery, fascism and communism, so why not. How ? That’s the next big question.

Posted by Ian on 10 September 2010

Superb key logger software is capable to record every activity that was performed at different login session by various users on your computer.

Posted by Keylogger Software on 21 September 2010
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