Umair Haque / Bubblegeneration
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Design principles for 21st century companies, markets, and economies. Foreword by Gary Hamel. Coming January 4th. Pre-order at Amazon.

Monday, November 01, 2004

The First World is the New Third World

"...It's a sad day, indeed, when just under 50% of the US voting population would vote for a treasonous gold-digger, who would dare compare the wonderful work of our US military in Iraq, freeing an entire nation from under the yoke of Sodamned Insane and his Ba'athist Butchers, to the treachery that was perpetrated on the brave Cuban ex-pats, who were hung out to dry by the first *spit* JFK *spit*.

Rope. Tree. Justice. The only three things that Qerry deserves for his "service".

See, this is what you get when you teach your kids football, guns, and Jesus are more important than calculus. Welcome to your future - it looks a lot like Saudi. Uhhh...except they behead people that disagree them, instead of hanging them.

-- umair // 11:17 AM // 2 comments


Hi...stepped over from the middle ground. Appreciate the link to the rant, although I'm sure that wasn't your intention.

One thing, reading your comments about calculous, etc, there are important distinctions. The first of which, you may have noticed, that no one is actually hanging from the lamp posts or trees. And, as you are still blogging here, I think we can surmise that your rights have not and will not be infringed. Free speech is for everyone, not just the right or the left.

In regards to the comments about "what happens when America is not so cool", I might point out a little history, finance and politics to you. First, you may recall that China was opened up to European commerce in the 15th century, but only became a real factor when the main lanes of commerce were opened up by force by the British in the 17th century. Likewise, Japan in 19th century had the proverbial and literal shot across the bow.

While not being the main factor in the events of the middle east, you have totally ignored what is most likely to be the newest avenues of commerce and capitalism. Why do you think so many are howling at being left out of the reconstruction efforts?

Second, as countries like China, India, Malasia, Mexico, just to name a few, are dependent on the factories of United States businesses, they have no real desire to see these product names damaged and will promote them as much as they can. Any idea how many bottling plants Coca Cola has around the world or how many people they employ?

If America goes, they all go.

Aside from calculus, you might want to look into history and economics. Always good things to study, too.
// Blogger Kat // 12:04 PM

OK, I should be writing a paper, but I appreciate your comment. Let's break down your arguments:

1) Talking about violence != violence.

- Sure, but the point is that civil society depends more or less on some kind of civilized discourse. You and your blog pals talk about killing people in terribly violent ways. This overblown violent rhetoric makes it hard to talk to you guys seriously, because we're not discussing anything of substance - we're discussing the animal output of raw emotion.

Not to mention the fact that it makes those of us who *have* seen the horror of real, third-world style intimidation and violence think of you as pea-brained, because talking about it so cheaply...well, cheapens the value of life.

2) China and Japan werent' 'opened up' until xxx.

- So what? This has nothing to do with much of anything.

3) If America 'goes', the world will 'go', because the world's emerging economies depend on America.

- This is demonstrably false to anyone with even a basic grasp of econ, let!! Look, right now, American consumption is being financed by China etc - not the other way around. We depend on them as much as they depend on us.

If America were to 'go' politically, the markets would be massively shocked - but let's remember that capital is both incredibly plastic and hugely mobile in the digital economy. I think the world, it's markets, and even *America's* markets would ultimately survive (in some form).

Using your example of Coke bottlers, I strongly suspect they would go on, as long as someone stepped in to fill the 'secret sauce' and marketing gaps, since they're local and regional businesses earning in local and regional currency.

I think the point you were trying to make is that many transnationals are American companies. Look, their operations are being outsourced, their legal structures are mostly on some tropical island, and capital flows to and from from all over the world through exchanges in London, Tokyo, Singapore, and NYC. How American does that make them? Not very - in fact, the last 20 years have been, in management terms, a process of corporations removing the American from themselves, and exchanging it for whatever worked better.

4) But this is the interesting point to me - you assume that America will 'go'. I think our country is much stronger than you give it credit for. I don't think it can be defeated by a few hundred religious zealots with bombs. I think America is an idea, which makes it stronger than any bomb or bullet.

What I really want to say to you is this: Why are you so afraid? I don't think you have to *live in fear*.
// Blogger umair // 12:31 PM

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