Category Archives: politics

scary stuff

Said the spider to the FlyNo not huge hairy spiders crawling on your face at night, or mutating radioactive zombies (although those would be rather scary), but more real life stuff.

The possibility of a Christian reverent becoming president of the US of A. FTW! As if it wasn’t bad enough already with the currently inspired by Christianity-when-it-suited-his-cause Bush Jr.

Creationism anyone? No thanks, but that twat will probably think it’s better to believe that instead of the daunting idea we all come from monkeys. Monkeys ffs. Warthogs would be worse IMHO. Monkeys are funny at least. Looks like McCain is in the lead for the Republicans so we might be in the clear, but still, I remember the last twat getting elected when we (the Europeans) thought it would never happen (again). Let Super Tuesday bring us hope!

Or how about Yahoo! being taken over by Micro$oft. Childs down my geeky spine that sends hmmm! I understand that the Empire wants to compete with Google and all, but it’s going to be the Dark side against the Google side I guess when it comes to that. Is Google not evil just because they claim so? I’m not sure, but they have shown far less evil streaks than the folks from Redmond have.

I sorta like(d) Yahoo. They have a lot of good services, and for a lot of those duplicates exist by M$, so my guess is a lot of those will be terminated at some point. Yahoo! chat vs MSN, 360° vs MSN spaces, Yahoo!Mail vs Hotmail… take your pick. Microsoft is also very good at pushing their own shit through the Windows operating system. From default internet searche pages, chat clients, media players to desktop search software. As a big monopolist they always try to pull this kind of stuff off, and the internet is their next goal to try and do the same. This can only be bad news to all of us. I think I’ll wait before I get that Flickr pro account I was thinking off, and see how this thing turns out.

(“Said the spider to the fly” image by Thomas Hawk, some rights reserved)

not split up yet

Tricolor massifWe haven’t split up yet, just in case you’re wondering how that small country named Belgium has been up to lately. Turns out it wouldn’t be such an easy task after all. I read this article in the local paper that stated that if Flanders would separate itself from the rest of what would still be called Belgium then, we would instantly drop out of the European Union. Yikes.

Now it’s not like they would be able to stop us from using the Euro oslt. But it would mean a lot of legal stuff would become very fuzzy. Investors looking for places to put their money in would skip our little land, because fuzzy legal stuff isn’t exactly what they are looking for. Economically it would be a bad idea to step out of the European Union like that, and we all know that you joining it is about as smooth as getting to pandas to get jiggy with it.

The neat part is that there’s quite some internet activity going down about this whole thing as well, with new sites popping up, and polls to take and all those kind of interweb fun. Here’s some links to stuff like that, in Dutch I’m afraid:

  • De BelgoMeter to find out if you’re a separatist, or a unionist. I’m pretty much in the middle I found out.
  • Red de solidariteit which is a petition for those who don’t want “the Be” to split up.
  • and last but not least, I love Belgium, about… well, you can guess that one right, even if you don’t speak Dutch or French which all posts are written in. Nice touch.
    (Via Ine btw).

belgium on the verge of a breakup?

Even though I’m not really into politics that much, currently we are having a very interesting political episode going down in our little country.

If you know Belgium you also know that the country is split up into several parts, making things rather complicated to govern.

As the federal elections took place a few months ago and a new federal government is supposed to be formed, things are getting a bit out of hand between the Flemish and French speaking politicians.

You see, the Flemish part is currently the wealthiest, and the Walloon part is sort of depending on us. Due to a long history of negotiations and cutting deals between the French and Flemish parts a lot of odd situations have arisen over the decades and the Flemish side wants to get those sorted now.

Problem is the Walloons like things just the way they are. They fear that any kind of change will be in their disadvantage. A lot of these issues are silly when you look at them however, and that counts both ways.

It’s not a crisis just yet, but it’s getting pretty darn close to it now. The King even got involved over the weekend trying to get the parties to work together, which only happens if things are truly in a rut. The separatists that always wanted to see Belgium split up into it’s linguistic regions are louder than ever at this time of course, but frankly I don’t think that is a realistic solution anyway.

Belgium is small as it is, and splitting it up into even smaller parts is ridiculous imo. Besides, the arguments that plead for the split are mostly based on a number of unfair rulings from the past, which can still be set straight. Both parts need each other in some degree. Without Wallonia, Flanders will never reach the Kyoto norm on it’s own for instance, just to give an example.

It’s mostly a political thing anyway, with a bunch of politicians who now do not want to back down and loose face, and the support of their voters. This is only augmented by the media (RTBF, I’m looking at you) who are putting some oil on the fire, heating up opinions, and making it even harder to build a compromise.

How this will turn out is hard to predict, but I’m hoping that no side has to roll over for the other. This counts specifically the Flemish side, since that is what has happened enough in the past already.

Politically and historically this could be an important milestone to grow into a stronger and better Belgium, but it’s going to need the will of politicians from both sides to work together to accomplish this.

german gov going crazy?

A German flag.The German government is making some odd waves lately. I posted about their odd internet censorship policy before affecting Flickr users in Germany, but there’s two posts on Hadez’ blog that really made me raise an eyebrow to who’s in charge of one of the most powerful countries in the European Union.

First there was the law they passed making all hacking tools illegal in Germany. Owning a tool, which means just having it on your hard drive is enough to get sent to jail for a year, or get a serious fine. Hacking tools however are not evil pieces of satanic source code mind you, they are the tools used by security experts and IT network admins to keep their networks running safely, while trying to detect intrusions, or prevent them.
It’s like with a crowbar. It’s used for burglary sure, but not everyone with a crowbar is intending to break into your car or house now is he?

A second one I thought was exclusive for those silly bats that live across the Atlantic. You know, those lads that got Bush junior re-elected and like to bomb small countries and all. They have these debates going down on whether or not Intelligent Design (talk about a contradiction) should be taught in school as an alternative to Darwin’s evolutionary theory. Turns out the same discussion is arising in Germany as well now ffs. Looks like the Americans aren’t the only silly bats out there anymore, and they moved into my backyard dammit.

I’m really hoping the rest of Europe isn’t going to be picking these crazy laws up as well, or we’re al screwed.

nuclear bunker buster loophole

a nuclear sunset by Michael HeilemannIf there’s one thing thats a scary development in the evolution of the US army it’s the fact that certain nuclear weapons -the nuclear bunker busters- have now become so called conventional weapons.
This means these bombs can be deployed by any 4 star general as he sees fit, without having to go through the complex nuke procedure we’ve all seen in several war and disaster movies before.

I heard about this before by watching a video (torrent or direct link from of Michel Chossudovsky speaking at the Perdana Peace Forum 2005 in Kuala Lumpur, but I didn’t realise at the time he was talking about these bunker busters. Just recently I came across a link with an animation of what those bombs are supposed to be doing, and how they will be causing more damage than they are causing due to nuclear fallout and possibly even spreading biological or toxic agents.

This flash animation gives an overview of what might be happening if these nukes are deployed in Iran (through Hypocrisy weblog).


bowling for columbine

I know it’s kinda late, but I saw Michael Moore’s Bowling for Columbine this weekend and even though a two hour documentary sounded like a boring idea to me at first it turned out to be quite excellent… which was sorta to what people had been telling me about it…

The most interesting part of the whole documentary was the reason that Moore suggested as to why Americans have a tendency to shoot each others brains out, compared to other countries who do not seem to be having those rather violent tendencies.
My guess was that other countries simply don’t have that many guns lying around. Like in Belgium for instance, the government has made it hard to get a gun. Most people don’t bother because of this, even though some would like one anyway.

So logically, with less guns at arms reach we have to resort to fistfights or whatever comes in handy at the moment we get so angry our Neanderthal brain tells us to bash some skulls into a bloody pulp, so evidently less people get blown away by lead beans.

But according to Moore Canadian homes hold about as much weapons as their US counterparts, and mortality rate due to boom sticks is far, far less… which is quite interesting.
Moore blames the media, and the way it sustains fear in the hearts of white America. The “scared white man” southparkish cartoon in the movie is simply brilliant, I wish there was a copy online of that somewhere I could link to, but I can’t find it at the moment. The cartoon is hilariously funny, but shouldn’t be taken too seriously, as some apparently do, but it does hold a certain degree of truth I guess.

a bikini bandit

another black sunday

Elections are over in Belgium and it turned out to be yet another so called “black sunday“. Once again the extreme rightwing party know as the “Vlaams Blok” has gained lots of votes all over Flanders. What seemed to be a local phenomenon located around Antwerp is starting to spread to the other provinces now.

Politicians are shocked once again, calling it a dark day for the Flemish people, but frankly I wasn’t that surprised to see their numbers go up again. As long as none of the issues addressed by the VB are actually dealt with properly, the party will continue to use those problems (even though they have no actual solutions for them) as their main agenda, and keep gaining influence as they have done before.

It’s time the remaining parties stick their heads together and deal with this matter -which they have been ignoring for way too long already- once and for all. So instead of sticking their heads in the sand again and forget about the whole thing in a few weeks, get on it ffs, and make sure this was the last of a row of black Sundays.