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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
srini n, Dec. 20, 2011

Freedom: who could object? Yet this word is now used to justify a thousand forms of exploitation. Throughout the rightwing press and blogosphere, among thinktanks and governments, the word excuses every assault on the lives of the poor, every form of inequality and intrusion to which the 1% subject us. How did libertarianism, once a noble impulse, become synonymous with injustice?

In the name of freedom – freedom from regulation – the banks were permitted to wreck the economy. In the name of freedom, taxes for the super-rich are cut. In the name of freedom, companies lobby to drop the minimum wage and raise working hours. In the same cause, US insurers lobby Congress to thwart effective public healthcare; the government rips up our planning laws; big business trashes the biosphere. This is the freedom of the powerful to exploit the weak, the rich to exploit the poor.”

https://apps.facebook.com/theguardian/commentisfree/2011/dec/19/bastardised-libertarianism-makes-freedom-oppression?code=AQA8LlpQwF059VZ2AxC_ADVKhNgzdsahKgfcfEPYSVpoAOCEKY87HsqXj5FY2R0J_e6hCABt1YZk8qJ
srini n
Comments (2)
  • Jessie Rhodes Jessie Rhodes Dec. 20, 2011
    Thanks for sharing this… A very astutely argued essay, which leads to a poignant conclusion…

    “Modern libertarianism is the disguise adopted by those who wish to exploit without restraint. It pretends that only the state intrudes on our liberties. It ignores the role of banks, corporations and the rich in making us less free. It denies the need for the state to curb them in order to protect the freedoms of weaker people…”

    The author, George Monbiot, whom I had never heard of before, is one of today's finest activist philosophers. I'll be reading more of his work!
  • srini n srini n Dec. 20, 2011
    I seem to have not given the correct link. Here is the link to the article in The Guardian
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/dec/19/bastardised-libertarianism-makes-freedom-oppression

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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
Bert Breton, Oct. 20, 2011

A senior National Transitional Council official in Libya has said that deposed Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has died of his wounds after being captured near his hometown of Sirte.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T6A5WXVuy_o&feature=player_embedded#!
Bert Breton
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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
Marco Masoni, Sept. 30, 2011

Is this finally going to push the Syrian regime over the edge?

(Reuters) - More than 10,000 soldiers have deserted the Syrian army and defectors are attacking security police who enforce loyalty to President Bashar al-Assad, a high-ranking defector said on Friday.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/09/30/us-syria-officer-idUSTRE78T3XE20110930
Marco Masoni
Comments (2)
  • Tim Foufas Tim Foufas Oct. 1, 2011
    I think it will take a lot more than that to topple the gov. They just have too much to lose.
  • Marco Masoni Marco Masoni Oct. 1, 2011
    They've also got a well financed, well trained and disciplined military that is loyal to the government.

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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
Marco Masoni, Sept. 28, 2011

This NYT article excerpt made wonder: what comes after democracy, as we know it?

Increasingly, citizens of all ages, but particularly the young, are rejecting conventional structures like parties and trade unions in favor of a less hierarchical, more participatory system modeled in many ways on the culture of the Web.

In that sense, the protest movements in democracies are not altogether unlike those that have rocked authoritarian governments this year, toppling longtime leaders in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya. Protesters have created their own political space online that is chilly, sometimes openly hostile, toward traditional institutions of the elite.

The critical mass of wiki and mapping tools, video and social networking sites, the communal news wire of Twitter and the ease of donations afforded by sites like PayPal makes coalitions of like-minded individuals instantly viable.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/28/world/as-scorn-for-vote-grows-protests-surge-around-globe.html?_r=1
Marco Masoni
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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
Marco Masoni, Sept. 25, 2011

An enlightened regime in Saudi Arabia?

http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2011/09/25/jamjoom-saudi-woman-vote.cnn?iref=videosearch
Marco Masoni
Comments (2)
  • Henry Hamilton Henry Hamilton Sept. 26, 2011
    This is mind blowing news! The Arab Spring has truly been a wake up call to the Saudis and has forced the issue of securing basic civil rights for their citizens. But the road to democracy is long.
  • Camilla Pashar Camilla Pashar Sept. 26, 2011
    Saudi women have also been given the right to run in the next election. This decision covers the following: first, the right of women to become members in the Shura Council and secondly, the right of women to announce their candidacy to become members of the local municipality councils. But the devil may be in the details. What kind of activities, and what kind of delegations will be given to women who become members of the Shura and municipal councils. Will they be left in the shadows within these councils?

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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
Ricky Burkhardt, Sept. 16, 2011

Libyan Uprising Boosts Morale in Mideast. The apparent victory by rebels in Libya is sending shockwaves throughout the Middle East. An uprising that appeared to be lost is boosting the morale of protesters facing other Arab governments that have responded with severe repression…Protests in Bahrain also faced a brutal response, with military help from Saudi Arabia. And Yemen’s uprising has entered a stalemate. Great coverage from Voice of America…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MugY_H0ziiY
Ricky Burkhardt
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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
Amy Sutherland, Sept. 14, 2011

Believe the hype: Cairo is bigger than Berlin — The revolution, by the time it’s finished, won’t just change Egypt, not even just the region, but the whole world…

Egypt is the most populous Arab country, as well as the most central both geographically and culturally. It is the home of the Suez Canal. It is not the second largest recipient of US military aid in the world (after Israel) for no reason. Its dictatorship has been a cornerstone of US policy in the region since the 70s, and central to pushing American interests on a region that could and should - if free of colonial tinkering - emerge as one of the globe’s great centres of culture and trade, on a par with Europe or East Asia…

In 2011, the spirit of Tahrir Square has been echoed not just around the Middle East (including in Israel) but in Greece, Spain, Portugal, the UK, the US, Chile, Burkina Faso and more. And as the workers in Wisconsin receive letters of solidarity from their comrades in Mahalla, and the internet kicks into gear as both a tool for organising and challenge to the dominance of the media giants, these local uprisings are beginning to add up to a whole greater than the sum of its parts…

Click below for Austin Mackell’s brilliant full length essay…

http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2899192.html
Amy Sutherland
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Henry Hamilton, Sept. 11, 2011

In Egypt, people feel that police and military are back to their old ways - treating people with unnecessary force and ignoring the people’s demands. Their anger now has turned towards the Israeli embassy in Cairo and mass protest in Tahrir Square…watch.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=plH9s_fyMMQ
Henry Hamilton
Comments (5)
  • Bert Breton Bert Breton Sept. 11, 2011
    Good point. Lech Walesa was a grass roots hero. A figure the populace looked to for inspiration and leadership. Who is the hero of the Egyption people - the person they look to for organization and vision? Could it be that they are leaderless - succeeding only in manifesting in large numbers in the streets of Cairo?
  • Marco Masoni Marco Masoni Sept. 13, 2011
    Walesa was a leader even before he led Solidarity and helped free Poland. Does Egypt have such leaders?
  • Henry Hamilton Henry Hamilton Sept. 14, 2011
    No one person speaks for the movement in Egypt. Still no clear leadership. But, I suspect, it will materialize.
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Discussions Discussion Internet’s Role in Popular Uprising
Bert Breton, Sept. 1, 2011

Despite the power of the Twitter and Facebook aided revolutions that began in Morocco in Dec. 2010 and spread to Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Syria, Libya, etc., the answer is not exclusively social media. Only 5.5 percent of Libya enjoys Internet access and an insignificant 0.96 percent is on Twitter. The power of satellite television - mainly Al Jezeera in N. Africa and Middle East - is also important. Since the middle of the 1990s, stations like Al Jazeera shattered the old state monopoly on information and supported what came to be called a new, vibrant and self-critical “Arab public sphere”. Images of mass mobilization and brutal repression echoed around that public sphere. Few in Egypt could ignore Tunisia’s uprising and jubilation.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ATKIgE_kRs
Bert Breton
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Marco Masoni, April 23, 2011

Exiles Shaping World’s Image of Syria Revolt
By ANTHONY SHADID
Published: April 23, 2011

“These activists have completely flipped the balance of power on the regime, and that’s all due to social media.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/24/world/middleeast/24beirut.html?_r=1&hp
Marco Masoni
Comments (1)
  • Amy Sutherland Amy Sutherland April 24, 2011
    Unlike the revolts in Egypt, Tunisia and even Libya, which were televised to the world, Syria’s revolt is distinguished by the power of self-styled activists abroad to ferry out images and news that are anarchic and illuminating, if incomplete. For weeks now, the small number of activists, spanning the Middle East, Europe and the United States, have coordinated across almost every time zone and managed to smuggle hundreds of satellite and mobile phones, modems, laptops and cameras into Syria. There, compatriots elude surveillance with e-mailed software and upload videos on dial-up connections. Their work has ensured what was once impossible. Cyberactivists outside of Syria fashion slogans of unity for a revolt that the government insists is inspired by militant Islamists.

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