30 November 2011

27 August 2010

Economic World War

Tarpley: 'US tries to destroy Euro'

12 August 2010

State Capitalism

The End of the Free Market: Six Questions for Ian Bremmer 
By Scott Horton
Ian Bremmer is one of Wall Street’s leading political risk analysts and consultants and the president of Eurasia Group. In his new book, The End of the Free Market, he highlights the rise of a new form of capitalism largely in the formerly communist bloc, “state capitalism.” I put six questions to Bremmer about his new book.

"Globalization has been the dominant driver of international politics and global markets for a generation. But in several countries around the world, we’re now seeing a fast-emerging struggle between free-market liberalism and a new form of capitalism dominated by the state. The collapse of communism didn’t bring about the final victory of free-market capitalism, because it didn’t put an end to authoritarian government." 

The free market and trade with China has of course not ended authoritarian government - it has enriched with willing complicity of western companies.

19 August 2008

Power and Democracy

Private capital tends to become concentrated in few hands, partly because of competition among the capitalists, and partly because technological development and the increasing division of labor encourage the formation of the larger units of production at the expense of the smaller ones.

The result of these developments is an oligarchy of private capital the enormous power of which cannot be effectively checked even by a democratically organized political society. This is true since the members of legislative bodies are selected by political parties, largely financed or otherwise influenced by private capitalists who, for all practical purposes, separate the electorate from the legislature.

The consequence is that the representatives of the people do not in fact sufficiently protect the interests of the underprivileged sections of the population. Moreover, under existing conditions, private capitalists inevitably control, directly or indirectly, the main sources of information (press, radio, education).

It is thus extremely difficult, and indeed in most cases quite impossible, for the individual citizen to come to objective conclusions and to make intelligent use of his political rights.

Albert Einstein 1949

09 February 2008

Sony, Rootkits and Digital Rights Management Gone Too Far

Old news but still interesting from Mark Russinovich's tech blog:

"Last week when I was testing the latest version of RootkitRevealer (RKR) I ran a scan on one of my systems and was shocked to see evidence of a rootkit. Rootkits are cloaking technologies that hide files, Registry keys, and other system objects from diagnostic and security software, and they are usually employed by malware attempting to keep their implementation hidden (see my “Unearthing Rootkits” article from thre June issue of Windows IT Pro Magazine for more information on rootkits). The RKR results window reported a hidden directory, several hidden device drivers, and a hidden application:

I entered the company name into my Internet browser’s address bar and went to http://www.first4internet.com/. I searched for both the product name and Aries.sys, but came up empty. However, the fact that the company sells a technology called XCP made me think that maybe the files I’d found were part of some content protection scheme. I Googled the company name and came across this article, confirming the fact that they have deals with several record companies, including Sony, to implement Digital Rights Management (DRM) software for CDs.

The DRM reference made me recall having purchased a CD recently that can only be played using the media player that ships on the CD itself and that limits you to at most 3 copies. I scrounged through my CD’s and found it, Sony BMG’s Get Right with the Man (the name is ironic under the circumstances) CD by the Van Zant brothers. I hadn’t noticed when I purchased the CD from Amazon.com that it’s protected with DRM software, but if I had looked more closely at the text on the Amazon.com web page I would have known."

The full post at Mark's blog