Sunday, July 17, 2005

Kiwi Carnival #3

Welcome to the third fortnightly Kiwi Carnival. The idea behind the carnival is to highlight the best posts from the New Zealand part of the blogosphere over the last two weeks. Every carnival will be hosted at a different blog, and any kiwi blogger or ex-pat can join in simply by submitting an article.

Following the precedent set from the last few carnivals, I've thrown in a few forcible submisions of things I think are worth reading, but whose authors (for reasons of their own) did not submit. But now, on with the show...

The London bombings are a big theme in this carnival. Christiaan Briggs - who is over there at the moment - points out the obvious: this is the chickens coming home to roost. No-one in London is surprised that this has happened; "today’s just extra special because the bombs were pointed the other way".

Peter Cresswell preaches the war against terror, which he characterises as a war for freedom, and against those who hate the good simply for being good.

Just Left reacts to the news that the bombers were British, and argues that this forces us all to consider the issue of tolerance and "how we might attain fairness and justice for all in a meaningful way, without undermining our own freedoms."

To this, I'll add two forcible submissions: Che Tibby posted an impressive call for people to avoid the mindless hatemongering the bombers hoped to inspire. Al Qaeda is in part trying to provoke a war of civilisations between Islam and the west, and to force those of us in the middle to pick sides in that war. instead, we should stand up for our vision of a world where we can all just get along, by opposing hate, violence and killing no matter its source or direction. Meanwhile, Reading the Maps reminds us of Karl Marx's reaction to the Indian Mutiny. Which is a longer way of saying "plus ca change, plus c'est ca meme chose".

Freedom also seems to be a strong theme this fortnight. Philosophy, et cetera argues that we should focus on delivering substantive freedom to all - "that is, enabling people to achieve their goals and live the sorts of lives they want to live". This requires both negative freedom - freedom from outside interference - but also helping people become "better educated, well-informed, and generally able to achieve their goals", so they can handle things for themselves.

Nigel Kearney responds by arguing that the idea of substantive freedom is fallacious, being "a long way from our ordinary understanding of the word 'freedom'" - and that even if correct, it fails to support the "socialist" policies advocated by its users.

Hamish McKenzie of Fighting Talk ruminates on the possibility of New Zealand having a national day of celebration similar to Canada's, chiefly by asking "why not"?

Mellie of Random ContributioNZ blogs about running up a mountain.

BerlinBear talks about visiting the recently opened Holocaust Memorial in Berlin.

Hans responds to Ashraf Choudhary's comments on stoning and the Koran, suggesting that rather than trying to have it both ways, stone-age religions should either come out of the closet and stand up for their repressive beliefs, or join the modern world.

I present some concrete policies to reduce greenouse emissions

Dave Crampton talks about the G8 summit and argues that trade, not aid, is the road to making poverty history. The statistics on this are simply staggering: it has been estimated that poor countries lost over $28 billion due to one-sided trade policies in 2000 alone - "enough to halve the number of people living on $1 day". Over the past 20 years, it has added up to US$272 billion - enough to wipe out Africa's debt and vaccinate every school-aged child.

DPF considers the prospects of New Zealand First holding the balance of power after the election.

Finally, two more forcible submissions: Maramatanga's analysis of ACT's woes, and Frogblog's defence of taxation as upholding our social contract.

The next Kiwi Carnival will be held at Not For Sale in two weeks' time.


Good job I/S. There's some interesting reading there. Thanks, your hosting efforts are appreciated.

Posted by Anonymous : 7/18/2005 09:42:00 AM