Friday, 16 May 2008

The world, now - Client Service

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Text version:

Wriiten: Tuesday 24 January 2006
Narrated: Friday, 16 May 2006

I want the world and I want it know
She said

Can you settle for half the world now
Or the whole world later?
He asked?

No, I want the world and I want it now
She insisted

What makes you think you can have it?
He asked

Cause I want it!
She replied, impatiently.

But do you need it?
He continued

You are stalling!
She accused him

Can you deliver the world to me now or not?
She insisted

I can, but not to you
He replied

Why not to me?
She asked, quite upset!

Cause I do not want to
He replied

Who on Earth do you think you are?
She challenged him

He replied

How dare you joke!
Your boss will hear about this
She said angrily

I am a free lancer
He replied
I do not have a boss
He said

The line was long
It was going to be another long day

Saturday, 10 May 2008

Brainstorming on General Dynamics

We may be over-dependent on oil for our energy needs and alternative sources (wind, solar, etc) are not going to make up the slack any time soon in the supply of energy, in view of oil prices and climate change, so is the whole thing playing into the hands of nuclear?

Trading one dependency for another? One type of risk for another, even remote (but deadly).

Both the rise of the temp of the Earth and a nuclear leak can cause severe damage humanity and environment (look at the situation in Chernobyl, 20+ years after). But then so can major volcano eruptions, metiors from outer space, bird related (for now) flus, and various other sources of collective/mass "destruction". Can we do anything or do we focus or distractions and "que sera sera" philosophising, as individuals? Can we instead afford to live on 20 or 30% of the energy consumption we are used to, as individuals, countries, human race? Food for thought!

Note: In about 30 years from now, the world population will gain as many added members as was the world population in around 1950! Ie we wil be more than 9 billion! Where will we find the water to drink, the rice and other staple foods to eat and survive, the energy to withstand winters, the energy to move, the energy to produce products and transport them for sale half the way around the world, etc?

Should we start practicing Spartan or Ancient Athenian lifestyles? Not as severe as Diogenes who lived in a barrel in the 4th century BC Athens, but ....

Are we going to be living more on food for thought and less on actual food? And spend our days doing sports, philosophising, writing poetry and civic affairs? As well as hedonism as the Romans and Greeks did? Or do we merely keep on going "business as usual" and que sera, sera, and let the future generations sweat it out (in 1, 2, 3 or 4 extra Celcious degrees average temps or nuclear safe areas, eg under protective domes)? Or since nothing lasts forever including the Earth and the sky ..... That is IMO why the Ancient Greeks' thinking on personal and civic ethos (ethics) is as relevant today as in the Pericles' Athens?

More (1): Where do we need to alter our ways more? In urban or local transport, eg walk or take mass transportation or use a horse, or in long distance one? Ie what should we be willing to use less, cars or airplanes (especially in regions where land transportation modes cannot complete the job of taking us to our destination)?

More (2): In most of the history of humans, even the last 3000 years only, did people grow roots and stay for generations in one place, or did they pick up and relocate from time to time? Which of the two is most frequent in human history?

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Is the UK doing economic re-modeling?

Last year's tax reforms seem to be causing problems to the government with many "constituencies" and social-economic groups of Society. The abolishion of the 10 pence tax rate is one. The tax measures for resident non-tax-resident persons. The tax measures re the earnings of corporations based in the UK that earn much of their revenue and/or taxable income abroad. Other than its direct, fiscal, aspects, tax systemics do reflect a wider strategic model for a country, its state, its economy and its Society.

Under Margaret Thatcher, the UK's model was changed. Eg the UK became the European (and EU) destination of choice for the European HQs of many US, Japanese and other multinationals. That is one of the reasons, IMO, that the UK governments of Mrs Thatcher and Mr. Major were in no way willing to accept the application of certain EU labor laws in the UK and negotiated an opt-out in the EU Maastricht Treaty (1990), leading to a Social Protocol that applied to the then 11 other member states, but not the UK.

The model did not change that much, IMO, during the "Blair" years! Maybe the decision not to use a transitional period (eg 2 years as most other "old" EU member states did) for the work rights for citizens of the A8, the eight large countries that joined the EU in 2004, was a strategic mistake. Because it flooded the UK with more intra-EU workers than it could, socially, handle. Because economically, amazingly enough, the UK economy was able to absorb all this volume of work seekers and unemployment rose only very marginally. Yet, that influx seems to have created many "systemic" effects within the UK's socio-economic system and dynamics, that have since been coming to the surface.

By becoming IMO a world Metropolis, London, has to some extent become less part of the UK. Britain and England. If one looks at history, this is not an uncommon effect for emerging Metropolises of the past. Many of the "natives" feel alienated in the "new", Metropolitic and Cosmopolitan, environment. Some economically, some work-wise (employment), some culturally, some "psychologically". They suffer a "shock".

Many of the UK's "old" citizens may actually be under such a shock. Many may recall the days before Cosmopolis or even before those "liberal" Beattles. who IMO reshaped the British Society. Maybe Budicca, whose sculpture rests on the banks of the Thames, and king Arthur, have gained "value" for many Britons. But as DNA analyses in recent times have suggested, the DNA of Britain, is a multi-culti one, and that effect dates well before the recent decades. The bottom line of this note is that maybe, de facto, last year's tax reforms were not part - or do not seem to be part - of a new "comprehensive" strategic model for Britain. I say "do not seem".