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Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Reframing the past at the UN

Claudia Rosett has an interesting take on Taiwan's success in the Wall Street Journal, The Good China: Taiwan succeeds despite being shunned by the U.N.--or maybe because of it. I particularly like this part;

Borrowing a page from George Orwell, the U.N. also celebrated its anniversary with a poster in the lobby of its famous but decrepit headquarters, on which it advertised a display of "Original Signatories of the U.N. charter." Except they weren't. The original signatory for China of the U.N. charter was the Republic of China. In the 2005 U.N. version, the signatory listed was "China, People's Republic of." Informed of this Turtle Bay twisting of history, [Taiwan ambassador] Hsia wrote to U.N. Undersecretary-General Shashi Tharoor, noting, "It is hard to imagine how the U.N., perhaps the world's most important international organization and one which is widely counted on to preserve the truth, could allow itself to blatantly deviate from history and misinform the world about something so fundamental to its history."

The U.N. did not write back, says Mr. Hsia, nor did the U.N. correct the mistake. Instead, in the finest tradition of Orwell's memory hole--the poster simply vanished.

And these guys want control of the Internet? Here's an update on that issue on physorg.com from UPI (Oct. 3) Rally for less U.S.-centric Internet gains momentum:

For its part, the United States has made clear its opposition to changing ICANN's role in naming domains as it continues to argue that now is not the time to change the system as it could lead to confusion while arguing that the United Nations would simply not be able to handle the responsibility.

Posted by Kevin Steel on October 5, 2005 in International Affairs | Permalink


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The United Nations (as it's still called) has definitely out-lived it's usefulness, if not it's purpose. With ALL members (democratically governed and other wise) having full voting rights, the UN is now at the beck and call of some of the most despotic nations ever known.
Let's trash the United Nations as it exists and start over with a democracy-style charter where only nations with democratically elected governments are entitled to full (voting) membership. Since the UN is presently controlled by despotic-nation members, we (the democracies) will probably have to resort to urging all democracies (including Canada) to prepare to withdraw from the UN and draw up a new charter, and then 'Go for it'.

Posted by: Rusty Wright | 2005-10-05 2:03:18 PM

If the US and Japan and other countries work out between them some protocol for deciding domain names, that would be fine, but the idea of the UN controlling the internet sounds like the beginning of a war movie. It's just a bad idea, on so many levels.

Posted by: EBD | 2005-10-05 2:28:13 PM

EBD brings up a good point, not just in the sense of a political protocol, but a technical protocol too. Off the top of my head I can see no technical reason why the US or Japan or the EU or the UN couldn't run disparate sets of root servers with agreements to forward relevent queries between the sets (just as your ISP's caching Domain Name Server forwards queries to the existing root servers).

Even if two of the sets of root servers didn't agree to talk to each other, individual ISPs or even users (via the alternate DNS IP address options in the computer's network configuration) can already arrange to try DNS lookups via multiple different servers.

(1) I could be wrong about the adaptability of the DNS. (2) The UN might be actually trying to do something far more underhanded than I am aware of. (3) This could be another case of politicans arguing about how many bytes can dance on the head of a pin in order to justify their expense-account padding sinecures.

Posted by: Tony | 2005-10-05 3:10:09 PM

The UN controlling the Internet is the last bloody thing we need. Can you imagine if Canada controlled it instead of the US? It never would have gotten off the ground. This site, for example, would not be allowed to publish unless it was completely translated into French. You would have to police the comments rigourously to "ensure the remarks properly represent the diverse views of the Canadian public" or be hauled before the Human Rights Commission. And of course you'd need lisences, both provincial and federal.

It is only because the Canadian government had absolutely no control over the Internet's development and proliferation that Canadians have amongst the highest rates of Internet access in the world. However, if they'd have had control of (or even understood) the technology right from the start, you can bet the entire Internet would be nothing more than a wired version of the CBC.

It's not that the feds didn't try to throw their dead wait around and regulate online content; it's just that they failed miserably. Now their making another attempt by trying to hand control over to the UN. They will fail again of course. But that's OK. Sometimes failed government policies are the very best ones.

Posted by: Raging Ranter | 2005-10-05 4:05:46 PM

There is no word more distorted and abused in political language than the word "United". We evewn use the word in plurial, systematically accepting to turn the word's applications into a constant paradox of continued divisions, confrontations and conflict. The more we modernise, the more accomodation is given to multiply the holding power of such a paradox. One thing that never change, is the artificial nature of unity itself.
Unity has become the point of focus since I moved from Quebec to Alberta in 1978. I now work on promoting the making of a televised series in which the main character draws the nation's attention from Alberta to Quebec. Once done, both Albertans and Quebecois reach out to the population of ROC and set the tone of what is yet to come with the following song:


Could we reach the agreement that it's the whole world who is in need to see a place like Canada to show that free will can be a good thing.
In 1945 we were invited to join a deal. Most of the nations had great hope to bring peace among humans.
After sixty years, great challenges are facing us. The deal has not provided what we forgot to look after.
We just cannot go on, building wealth for me, myself and I, while our loving for each other remains hidden behind divisions.
We've got to grow from that bottom line that has been in use and bring about that sense of belonging, bonded beyond the business fences.
Maybe we haven't understood that prosperity only comes to us from who we are together and not from what we do to each other.
We have all it takes to become heaven on earth; we have been blessed with wealth, now let's lead wealth to prosperity.
Believe it or not, it is the whole world who is in need to see a place like Canada to show that the renewing Covenant is unity for humanity.
Benoit Couture © Subsense Publishing and Promotion

Ps: There is also a song to draw Albetans together as well. By clicking my name, you will get to page that describe the KDN. It describes an alternative to the UN's handling of the Internet. KDN stands for Kingdom Deep Net and the idea is use it as a fishing net that goes across www as a depolution and an invitation to as a conversion tool of the mind and heart.

Posted by: Benoit Couture | 2005-10-06 3:45:42 AM

In relation to the televised series for Canadian unity's healing that I promote as mentioned in my last entry, (from my stay-at-home-dad-supported-by-my-wife's income) I am now posting a letter that I sent to general Domeo D'Allaire a few weeks before anyone of the public knew of his appointment as Senator of Canada:

Greetings Mr. D'Allaire, I am working to promote unity in and amongst Canadians, from a socio-cultural healing approach. The event I would like to promote starts with a 3 day symposium to include yourself, Bono of U2, David Suzuki, Roberta Jemison, Phil Fontaine, Bruce Cockburn, Patrick Watson and a series of personalities who represent justice and mental health in the heart and minds of the private and public. The intent of the symposium is to lay the foundation for the development of the faculty of living. The citizenship of Canadians, our identity, needs a way to clearly define authority, obedience, discipline and mutuality, in the way that will cause a wake up call to all the Louis Riel and Romeo D'Allaire who don't know how to get away from living under the rule of ignorance, their own as well as society's. Many are in jail or live sub-human conditions, in the underground cavities. They did not make it out of it the way you did. Praise God for your recovery. That recovery is at the heart of a sequence of cultural, social and political events which are converging to lay down the tracks of restorative justice and community mental health. This will provide Canadians with a national opportunity to free ourselves from the agitations of the terror-anti-terror crisis. Part of that sequence calls for citizens to get positioned for the next federal election to go from competing to completing and from the never ending political power struggle to the voter's power handle and straight for community self-governing. The attachment I am sending you goes from 2 meditations that I use to help recovering people and it goes on to draw a picture of growing unity that comes together like a greening spring in April; and in the end, I address Mr. Bush on the terms of faith all the way. At worst, it should give you a smile.
The following address is a group I opened this week end on Yahoo. I posted some of my writings in there. If you enjoy the bit I am sending you, I'll be honoured to welcome you at: n/a
Now please understand that I speak to you from a not so good reputation when it comes to social status. After being rescued myself from the bottom of sanity after falling from playing with junior Canadian at 17, I stayed where I could help people get off the street. People who find themselves in the spiralling desolation of their souls and minds for what ever reason. When I heard you on CBC last week (Shaking hand with the devil documentary), I thought it might be worth the long shot toward you, as you well know now, of the invisible enemy upon humanity's well being, thank you sincerely for your time, and I hope to hear from you, Benoit Couture

So if you wish to see more of the different kind of angles I seek to promote with, click my name.
Once you read my comment, click on "People for public broadcasting".
The man who promotes the BBC campaign that this leads you to, is the son of Norman Macrae who was the deputy editor of "The Economist" daily of London England.
The campaign for the BBC is of the same nature as I work to get off the ground for the CBC by docu-dramatising our national socio-cultural healing.
With public broadcasting getting out of the commercial turf, there will be an eventual joining with PBS in the US.
Such democracy's growing up into maturity, the UN and all powers that be can finally stop arguing and warring about "AUTHORITY" and show it in the live making, so that we know where we are going and how we are going to get there...to be continued in the arousal of the Renewing West...

Posted by: Benoit Couture | 2005-10-06 5:36:14 AM

The prospect of the UN controlling the internet is scary. Even if there hadn't been the oil-for-food adn other scandals, the UN is partially run by unfree countries.
China (who's history and lack of human rights the UN refuses to acknowledge) is already controlling the free flow of ideas on the internet, with the help of Yahoo!, Google and Microsoft. How could anyone actually propose to give China more of a say over the Internet?
The web was invented in the US and by Americans. If it wasn't for free inquiry and the scientific progress of America, there would be no internet to squabble over. Since its beginnings, to my knowledge there have been no issues with regard to the US attempting to censor speech, (unless it is threatening to someone's rights, i.e. child pornography).

Posted by: Charlotte | 2005-10-06 8:42:49 AM

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