Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 5th Feb 2012 12:26 UTC
Legal "Among the treasure troves of recently released WikiLeaks cables, we find one whose significance has bypassed Swedish media. In short: every law proposal, every ordinance, and every governmental report hostile to the net, youth, and civil liberties here in Sweden in recent years have been commissioned by the US government and industry interests." How such prestigious nations with such long and proud histories, like Sweden, The Netherlands, and so on, can succumb to pressure from a former colony is beyond me. We should know better.
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???
by ebasconp on Sun 5th Feb 2012 14:08 UTC
ebasconp
Member since:
2006-05-09

What that "from a former colony" stuff was about?

I and a lot of OSnews readers were born and live in countries that
were someone's colonies; so, your "from a former colony" text
sounds to me full of arrogance, superiority feelings and is not
needed at all in the text above...

Reply Score: 7

RE: ???
by JAlexoid on Sun 5th Feb 2012 14:10 UTC in reply to "???"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

An yet it's more of a slant against Sweden and The Netherlands than anything else.

Oh.... And The Netherlands were a "colony" of Spain.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: ???
by bnolsen on Sun 5th Feb 2012 14:11 UTC in reply to "RE: ???"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

and both became colonies of nazi germany until the other colony got in the war.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: ???
by tylerdurden on Mon 6th Feb 2012 00:48 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: ???"
tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

COLONYCEPTION!

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: ???
by evert on Mon 6th Feb 2012 10:21 UTC in reply to "RE: ???"
evert Member since:
2005-07-06

No, The Netherlands never were a colony of Spain. Both countries were part of the Holy Roman Empire, in fact a Germanic empire that took some symbols from the old Roman Empire and where the Roman church had much influence. The first Emperor was Frankish (a Germanic tribe). The Emperor of the time of the civil war moved to Spain and ruled from there. The Netherlands didn't want to pay taxes any more, and also the Reformation played its part.

Your historic knowledge of Europe is faulty, which is not surprising giving the fact that you are living in a former colony ;-) Although I have to admit that the former colony has done a great job. But remember that most of your culture originates elsewhere.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: ???
by JAlexoid on Mon 6th Feb 2012 23:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: ???"
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Lithuania? A former colony? Of what?

My knowledge of European history may have some holes in it, but I definitely know where Holland is and what country the French refer to as Pays-Bas and why.

PS: Note that I put quotes around the word colony. That is for a reason...

Edited 2012-02-06 23:56 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: ???
by zima on Sun 12th Feb 2012 23:25 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: ???"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Hm, so you already forgot Lithuanian ССР...

Or: a "colony" of pre-Soviet Russia, in XIX century ...really, also in XVIII, already under strong Russian influence, just like Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in general (well, the more eastern parts at least). Oh yeah, and particularly in later (but before terminal) times of that Commonwealth also of ~Poland, sort of. And one might debate even much earlier periods vis-a-vis Teutonic Knights (also depending on what we count as Lithuania, I guess - area called that back then, or now?)

You know, just something around half the recorded history of the area (particularly by the standard of "Note that I put quotes around the word colony. That is for a reason...") / yup, seems yours may have some holes.

Reply Score: 2

RE: ???
by cfgr on Sun 5th Feb 2012 14:20 UTC in reply to "???"
cfgr Member since:
2009-07-18

Quite the contrary, it emphasises how low the European countries have sunk. They've become a colony of one of their former colonies.

Reply Score: 7

RE: ???
by d3vi1 on Sun 5th Feb 2012 14:40 UTC in reply to "???"
d3vi1 Member since:
2006-01-28

Here's an off-topic flame-bait.

Thom probably meant "former rebellious colony".

What you're not getting is that the blokes in the old continent are getting quite fed up with the US policy of behind the doors lobbying.

In our democracies, new laws are subject to public debate unlike ACTA and other US horror stories. In the past few years, the land of freedom and democracy, has only tried to circumvent the will and sovereignty of the people of other countries that it calls friends.

Furthermore, the non-friends get invaded (Irak) under false pretences. In Irak they destroyed all traces of civility (women's rights and education were thrown back 50 years over there). While Sadam was most probably a tyrant (we'll never know for sure as history is written by the winners), the good old US of A acted without warrant, knowingly under false pretences and without a clear understanding of the consequences (see security, health, education and women's rights).

The US of A is acting more like the old USSR every day and Thom wasn't feeling superior but he was looking down on the US. Europe has it's problems but nothing compares to the structural and civic problems that the citizens of the US have allowed their country to have.

Reply Score: 7

RE[2]: ???
by UglyKidBill on Sun 5th Feb 2012 15:11 UTC in reply to "RE: ???"
UglyKidBill Member since:
2005-07-27

[...] What you're not getting is that the blokes in the old continent are getting quite fed up with the US policy of behind the doors lobbying.

In our democracies, new laws are subject to public debate unlike ACTA and other US horror stories. In the past few years, the land of freedom and democracy, has only tried to circumvent the will and sovereignty of the people of other countries that it calls friends.
[...]


But after some "debate" everthing, some way or another, is either accepted, or ovelooked, or silently condoned... to follow your examples: France´sthree strikes law, Spain´s Sinde law and Irak support, Britain irak support and a fragging citizen extradition (WTF!!!).

Europe is going that same way, it´s just they are still at the "massaging peoples brain" stage.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: ???
by chemical_scum on Sun 5th Feb 2012 18:23 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: ???"
chemical_scum Member since:
2005-11-02

So to is Canada under the now majority government of the (neo)-Conservative right wing extremist prime minister Harper.

He is now trying very hard to follow the US instructions on the destruction of freedom and free speech on the internet as well as threatening to destroy our pension rights.

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: ???
by kristoph on Mon 6th Feb 2012 06:24 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: ???"
kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

On the bright side the CAD is kicking ass, the resources sector of the economy is booming, the financial sector is rock solid, the job picture (versus historical trends) is pretty good, the Canadian GDP growth is wiping the floor with those of most first world economies, the energy sector continues to expand, and there are all sorts of other awesome things going for you guys.

So, yeah, Harper is a bit a nut but Canada is doing pretty well under his watch - which is probably why he keeps getting re-elected Let's be honest though, Chrétien was a bit of a nut too - albeit a liberal one - so this sort of like a Canadian trend. ;-)

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: ???
by zima on Sun 12th Feb 2012 23:30 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: ???"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

When Canada becomes a profligate empire, "Blame Canada!" will be awesome ;>

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: ???
by lucas_maximus on Mon 6th Feb 2012 11:53 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: ???"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Do you guys have a problem spelling Iraq?

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: ???
by UglyKidBill on Mon 6th Feb 2012 18:13 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: ???"
UglyKidBill Member since:
2005-07-27

Do you guys have a problem spelling Iraq?

Has it occurred to you it is not written "Iraq" even in their own language?...

↑ Cfr. Ortografía de la lengua española, Madrid, Espasa, 2010. ISBN 978-84-670-3426-4
[...] se documenta desde antiguo en español la forma Irak, mayoritaria en el uso y preferible a Iraq, pues evita la anomalía que supone en nuestro sistema gráfico el uso de la letra q fuera del dígrafo qu, y presenta una k final que es hoy normal en muchas voces procedentes de otras lenguas.
Ortografía de la lengua española, 2010, pág. 115. § 6.2.2.4.2.2 Uso de la letra q para representar el fonema /k/

Ref:
http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraq

http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraq#cite_note-1

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: ???
by lucas_maximus on Mon 6th Feb 2012 19:38 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: ???"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

No I didn't think they were Spanish. Most people speak English when they comment and it is "Iraque" in British English, however if you were saying American English it would still sound correct as "Irak".

Thus why I asked.

Edited 2012-02-06 19:44 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: ???
by d3vi1 on Mon 6th Feb 2012 19:33 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: ???"
d3vi1 Member since:
2006-01-28

Not usually. In most languages, like my own native Romanian it's actually spelled Irak.
But hey, I don't have an entire press department at my disposal to correct my spelling. Even with a press department, G.W. still managed to rename nuclear as nucular.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: ???
by lucas_maximus on Mon 6th Feb 2012 19:42 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: ???"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

I have to confess I expect English spellings on an English speaking site.

However "Irak" is wrong for a "British" prognostication. It is correct of a US one though. However I think ours rolls off the tough better.

Reply Score: 2

RE: ???
by Thom_Holwerda on Sun 5th Feb 2012 15:02 UTC in reply to "???"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

What that "from a former colony" stuff was about?


It's to indicate that what was once a colony, has now risen far above its former colonisers. I don't think that's a good thing.

I like the relationship between, say, modern South American nations or Canada and Europe far more. South American countries have really come into their own, developed their own culture, and are now equal to the countries that once governed them. Yet, you don't see South American countries or Canada trying to act like dicks. The US is the only former colony now seemingly ruling its colonisers.

The Netherlands committed horribly atrocities in its own colonies (especially in Indonesia). However, if you were to ask an Indonesian now if Indonesia should bribe, pressure, and try to rule The Netherlands, they'd most likely say something along the lines of "Of course not - why would we want to do unto you what we did not want you to do unto us?"

It's not an arrogance thing - it's just highlighting how most former European colonies are happy developing their own culture and ideas without trying to shove it down everybody else's throat.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: ???
by Soulbender on Mon 6th Feb 2012 06:35 UTC in reply to "RE: ???"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

It's to indicate that what was once a colony, has now risen far above its former colonisers. I don't think that's a good thing.


The way you phrased it made it sound a lot like jealousy.

South American countries have really come into their own, developed their own culture


South American countries had their own cultures back when we in the west still wore diapers. It was just suppressed be the colonial tyranny for a while.

happy developing their own culture


See above.

ideas without trying to shove it down everybody else's throat.


Considering the upheavals and internal conflicts many former colonies have gone through this statement is patently false.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: ???
by cyrilleberger on Mon 6th Feb 2012 10:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: ???"
cyrilleberger Member since:
2006-02-01


"South American countries have really come into their own, developed their own culture


South American countries had their own cultures back when we in the west still wore diapers. It was just suppressed be the colonial tyranny for a while.
" [/q]

Before European came to South American, the dominant cultures was the Maya empire from Mexico to northern Central America, Inca more to the south, and various tribes in the rain forest. Most of those cultures have been wiped out when the European invaded, through massacre, diseases and assimilation. And they never came back, right now, to the exception of a few countries such a Bolivia or Equator, the population of South America is dominated by people from European origin. The dominant culture is of a Latino (Spanish and Portuguese) inspiration.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: ???
by Soulbender on Mon 6th Feb 2012 19:21 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: ???"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

The dominant culture is of a Latino (Spanish and Portuguese) inspiration


Good point.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: ???
by earksiinni on Mon 6th Feb 2012 20:48 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: ???"
earksiinni Member since:
2009-03-27

Most of those cultures have been wiped out when the European invaded, through massacre, diseases and assimilation. And they never came back, right now, to the exception of a few countries such a Bolivia or Equator,


This is really not true. A significant proportion (probably most, we don't actually know that well) of the native population after the beginning of European colonization of South America died due to disease, warfare, and the ilk. Also, there are very few South American people (maybe recent immigrants?) whose ancestry is not mixed. But at any rate, native cultures have both deeply influenced nearly every facet of South American life and have also in certain areas continued to have more or less independent existences.

Also, there is a significant logical flaw in your statement: you can't be "wiped out" and "assimilated" at the same time.

the population of South America is dominated by people from European origin. The dominant culture is of a Latino (Spanish and Portuguese) inspiration.


Dominant origin of people does not equal dominant culture (see above). Like, not even remotely. Whatever "dominant culture" means.

Moreover, the population of a country like, say, Brazil, is largely dominated by people from West African origin. In other parts of South America, very often the most widespread "origin" (a somewhat misleading term since nearly everyone is of mixed descent) is native.

Reply Score: 3

RE: ???
by OSbunny on Sun 5th Feb 2012 23:55 UTC in reply to "???"
OSbunny Member since:
2009-05-23

Well I live in a former colony and when I try to access that link I get a cloudfront access restricted message. It seems Pakistani ISPs IPs are suspicious. So looks like former colony stuff is still given weight in old Europe *and* US.

Edited 2012-02-05 23:56 UTC

Reply Score: 1

former colony?
by bnolsen on Sun 5th Feb 2012 14:10 UTC
bnolsen
Member since:
2006-01-06

just can it with the rhetoric. The current administration is owned by big movie, music, publishing and media using their dollars to bribe officials to get what they want. The result is this highly irresponsible use of US power in the world and strange policies of punish your friends and reward your foes.

Reply Score: 4

RE: former colony?
by zima on Sun 12th Feb 2012 23:53 UTC in reply to "former colony?"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

This goes many ways - for example, big media is a fabulous tool of politics, of influencing people, too.

Also, from where do you think the people in administrations, official positions and... big companies come from? Those are largely also reflections of their societies.
Or: many people dream of their "chance" & part of the cake; relatively few would reject perks, given the chance (and anyway, "the people" are major shareholders of big business - via their savings, retirement funds, etc., and they tend to wish for maximum returns)

Reply Score: 2

v Wait ...
by WorknMan on Sun 5th Feb 2012 14:24 UTC
RE: Wait ...
by Sodki on Sun 5th Feb 2012 15:41 UTC in reply to "Wait ..."
Sodki Member since:
2005-11-10

So you guys are just now realizing that the crackdown and raids on entities like the Pirate Bay in Sweden were initiated by the US? SHOCKER!!!


No, we already knew that. But now there's proof.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Wait ...
by WorknMan on Sun 5th Feb 2012 16:00 UTC in reply to "RE: Wait ..."
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

No, we already knew that. But now there's proof.


Why did you need proof of the obvious? Even a blind man could've seen that. Was there anyone who insisted that the US wasn't involved?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Wait ...
by Radio on Sun 5th Feb 2012 16:41 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Wait ..."
Radio Member since:
2009-06-20

«Obviousness» is no replacement for «facts».

Reply Score: 7

RE[4]: Wait ...
by umccullough on Sun 5th Feb 2012 16:54 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Wait ..."
umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26

«Obviousness» is no replacement for «facts».


[Citation needed]

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Wait ...
by umccullough on Sun 5th Feb 2012 21:13 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Wait ..."
umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26

Was there anyone who insisted that the US wasn't involved?


Well actually, if you read the article, it's mentioned several times that Falkvinge and the Pirate Party have been claiming this for years, and have been criticized as conspiracy theorists and nutjobs for it.

So, you might expect them to make a big deal out of it when there's finally solid proof.

Reply Score: 8

RE[3]: Wait ...
by nej_simon on Mon 6th Feb 2012 10:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Wait ..."
nej_simon Member since:
2011-02-11

What is obvious to you might not be obvious to someone else.

For example I think it's obvious that the US went to the moon back in -69, yet some people would argue that it was all a hoax.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Wait ...
by zima on Sun 12th Feb 2012 23:57 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Wait ..."
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Was there anyone who insisted that the US wasn't involved?

Swedish officials tend to portray their country as independent, yes (likewise Swedish judges about their field)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Wait ...
by Redeeman on Sun 5th Feb 2012 18:20 UTC in reply to "Wait ..."
Redeeman Member since:
2006-03-23

except they did zero infringement. its USERS may have..

Reply Score: 4

RE: Wait ...
by TechGeek on Sun 5th Feb 2012 19:35 UTC in reply to "Wait ..."
TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

Get off your high horse. We as a country rebelled from Britain over exactly this type of behavior. It violates the very notion of the Declaration of Independence. Our government is so screwed up its about time we started over.

Reply Score: 6

True New World Order
by UglyKidBill on Sun 5th Feb 2012 15:00 UTC
UglyKidBill
Member since:
2005-07-27

uhm... I would have thought that we, as an arguably more concerned and at least bit better informed bunch, would have realized by now that "Countries Are No More!!!" (TM) (*).

The operative words now are "Bussiness", "Global" and "Puppets".

And they have been for such a long time now...


(*) PS: I just registered that, don´t you dare using it or I´ll sue you!

Reply Score: 4

The USA needs to think it over some more
by ronaldst on Sun 5th Feb 2012 17:25 UTC
ronaldst
Member since:
2005-06-29

There's no piracy problem.
There's an "access to content" problem.

And America is doing what it does best: going around beating up everybody else while trying to "fix" them.

Reply Score: 5

umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26

There's no piracy problem.
There's an "access to content" problem.


Also, there's a "he who stuffs the most cash in politicians' campaign pockets wins" problem - and it just happens that the content-industry-lobbyist-machine has been doing this better and longer than most other industries. Until the internet came along, they "owned" the public attention with television, radio, and print (content-publishing formats that had a relatively high bar of entry).

Hopefully the newly-found recognition of these dirty politics spreading across the U.S. (and world at large) via the internet will begin to slow and reverse the damage done here - but I'm not holding my breath yet. These dinosaurs are huge, and may not go down easily.

Edited 2012-02-05 18:05 UTC

Reply Score: 6

frderi Member since:
2011-06-17

And America is doing what it does best: going around beating up everybody else while trying to "fix" them.


Quite so. TPB is an old example, the MegaUpload crackdown is just the latest example that America has decided that what it deems to be lawful on its own territory is also applicable to be lawful for the entire world.

America is acting like a mentally challenged high school bully, terrorizing the other kids in the classroom. When you promote stupidity, what you breed is arrogance. Its about time the world goes to college so we can regulate bullies like this outside of the school system, regulating them to flip burgers in a low-wage environment, where they belong.

Edited 2012-02-05 18:43 UTC

Reply Score: 6

ummm ... need to lay of the drugs
by kristoph on Sun 5th Feb 2012 23:44 UTC
kristoph
Member since:
2006-01-01

How such prestigious nations with such long and proud histories, like Sweden, The Netherlands, and so on, can succumb to pressure from a former colony is beyond me.

Seriously, Thom, that statement is one of the nuttier things you've written. It's right up there with 'Freedom Fries'.

It's like arguing that the Greeks should lead Europe because, you know, their classical civilization provided the foundation of Western culture.

It's ancient history dude.

The harsh reality is that he US is the sole military superpower, it's the biggest economy and it's culture influences every person on the planet (for good or ill).

Netherlands and Sweden are, of course, important nation states and significant economies but in the global context their impact is not tangible, militarily, culturally, or economically.

It's in the overall best interest of their citizens to 'integrate' at least their military and economic policies with larger nations and institutions. Sometimes that means you make sure you chicken coops are of a certain size and sometimes you make sure the kids can't download free movies.

Edited 2012-02-05 23:49 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

lands and Sweden are, of course, important nation states and significant economies but in the global context their impact is not tangible militarily, culturally, or economically


The Netherlands is the third largest investor in the United States. I wouldn't strike such a hoity tone about this topic.

Of course, you entirely missed the point of my original remark - see my comment about that higher up.

Reply Score: 4

kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

I didn't miss your point. I am simply explaining that your nationalist/colonial view is in no way relevant in todays highly globalized first world.

Let try this simpler analogy ..

We're all in the same playground. One group of kids have lots of toys. If you want to play with some of their toys you have to play by some of their rules, even if you may not like them.

]{

PS. Just for the record, I am actually European. I've spent most of my career in Europe. Although I now make the US my home I have the greatest respect for Europe, it's culture, it's people, and it's institutions.

Reply Score: 2

TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

Going by your analogy, that group of boys shouldn't get to dictate how everyone else on the playground plays with their own toys. That's what the US is doing. Iy would be one thing for us to say, "we don't approve of your IP laws, so we aren't selling you our stuff". I wouldn't have a problem with that. But for the US to dictate what you do with your own stuff is BS. If we don't like it, we can always find some other customers.

Reply Score: 3

kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

Iy would be one thing for us to say, "we don't approve of your IP laws, so we aren't selling you our stuff". I wouldn't have a problem with that. But for the US to dictate what you do with your own stuff is BS. If we don't like it, we can always find some other customers.


You misunderstand the laws in question. If there are no laws protecting IP, indeed if the laws actively support the arbitrary distribution of IP, then the country in question would become a safe haven for exactly the sort of IP exploitation of US IP the US wants to address. This is pretty much exemplified by the Pirate Bay which was, for a long time, effectively protected by Swedish law.

The US does not give a shit about Swedish and Dutch IP.

Reply Score: 1

tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

Technically Canada is the 3rd largest foreign investor in the US, your country and Germany tend to swap 4th and 5th places every other year.


We can also discuss South Africa, or some other great "hits" from your "prestigious" and "proud" colonial history too if you want.


The Western World does love denial though. For the past half century, the US has been in denial about the fact that we are a de facto empire. And most European nations are in denial about the fact that they are just protectorates of the US.

Empires come and go. One day you're a "prestigious and proud" empire, the next you're the bitch of a newer "prouder" and "more prestigious" empire.

Reply Score: 5

Straho Member since:
2011-09-30

China

Reply Score: 2

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

It's in the overall best interest of their citizens to 'integrate' at least their military and economic policies with larger nations and institutions. Sometimes that means you make sure you chicken coops are of a certain size and sometimes you make sure the kids can't download free movies.


Alternatively you can be a man, stand up to the bully and do something about it. Like, I dunno, the Boston Tea-Party?

Reply Score: 5

kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

Ah yes but that would require a plurality of voters to actually care about this issue enough to vote a government who would 'stand up'.

The reality is that this is basically a fringe issue to be debated by geeks like us and most people just don't care (actually they probably don't even know there is an issue).

Reply Score: 3

v Honest?
by jefro on Mon 6th Feb 2012 16:46 UTC
nicolasgoddone
Member since:
2009-04-20

When colonies are formed with a base of skilled rather educated and working people they want to emancipate earlier, figures doesn't it?.

Aware of gross oversimplifications... lets compare the British and Spanish colonies for example, British took the north, Spaniards the south, south America begun to be colonised around early 1500, while the north more that 100 years later, at least two generations regarding life expectancy around the time. North got to be independent first.

We all know what happened down here, Spain took waaay more than they chipped in. They decimated amazing civilisations for gold and silver that they later squandered in wars or donated some to the stupid church which was under much debate (after dividing the world in half to Portuguese and Spanish discoverers, just lookup the treaty of Tordesillas, British were to "piraty" at the time it seems) to decide if south American Indians actually had a soul.

All colonies had it rough, no doubt, but America contributed so much gold, silver, crops such as corn, potato, tomato, chiles and what not...
"and all we got as some lousy death-roll inmates, deceases, some religion, mirrors and lousy tee shirts".

The USA is late in the game and its just catching up, same shit with this colon-oscopy thingie, just different times, at least now thanks to the internet we know....
...
..
.and the more you know

Reply Score: 0

Comment by zima
by zima on Sun 12th Feb 2012 23:59 UTC in reply to "former colonies with good migration have a nasty habit"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

The conditions of areas themselves also play a role in long term developments... for one example, tropical diseases certainly were a major limiting factor (vs. temperate north) for Latin America well into XX century.

(with Church it was also less clear then you make it out to be, for example http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jesuit_Reductions ...and note I'm generally the first to point out the idiocies of Vatican - firmly standing behind silly mythologies not even being the worst; or: "around early 1500" wasn't really when the colonisation started, the times were much more comparable; those "amazing civilisations" were also decimating themselves quite successfully, Spaniards just took one side; or: the, yes, "piraty" British created quite a headache for Spanish shipping down the line; or: north was also largely French)

Edited 2012-02-13 00:19 UTC

Reply Score: 2

earksiinni
Member since:
2009-03-27

I'll remain silent on who has colonized whom, mostly to avoid flames from arrogant European programmers (doubly arrogant!) who like to bash well-informed Americans on this site.

But as an intelligent human who happens to have a Western sense of humor, Thom's comment has something that we in the Anglophone world like to call wryness.

Being bicultural and bilingual myself, I know that a lot of non-Western cultures wouldn't see the dark humor in what Thom wrote, and I think that it's a bit of an untranslatable statement. Nevertheless, I will attempt to translate.

He's not saying that the colonizers are better than the former colonies and therefore that they should know better. Just the opposite, he's subtly adding the shame of this collusion--made all the more shameful by the irony of the fact that the U.S. was once a colony but now acts as a colonizer--to the overtowering heap of crap that Europeans have to be ashamed about. Shame. That is what makes this humor so wry.

If you were paying close enough attention, there is a double irony in there, which is that no educated Westerner can invoke such metaphors without realizing that she is perpetuating the wrongs of colonialism even as she uses it to point blame back at her own society. That by using colonial metaphors as a joke, she is essentially colonizing history for her own humor, just as her forefathers colonized other countries for their own gain. Hence, you get reactions like the first commenter's, whose naive sentiment is absolutely right: what right have you, Thom, to use that history as a joke? And Thom is equally right, because that's just how wry humor works. I think it's one of the few things that's quintessentially Western.

Mind you, not that Westerners think all these things out consciously when they make jokes like this, but that is the sentiment behind them.

FWIW, I got a good chuckle. Well played, sir.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Luminair
by Luminair on Mon 6th Feb 2012 20:45 UTC
Luminair
Member since:
2007-03-30

why are democratic governments working against their people again?

oh yeah, because democratic governments work for businesses. because voting isn't enough to make a democracy. here's to your laws being written by lobbyists at foreign embassies.

Reply Score: 3