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About encanta_anima

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    Open Source Freely Distributed Slut
  • Birthday 30/08/1987

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  • Location
    Lund, Sweden
  • Interests
    politics, mathematics, emacs, music from ~1976-1985

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  1. Agh. But so do all books of Neal Stephenson's. I can clearly imagine and visualise each and every one of his books (that I've read, which amounts to four I think) up until the last ~70 pages. The ends suck. He's not good with finishing stories. It's as if he sat down with a bottle of whisky and said to himself "Well, I need to wrap this up" and then done it in the first possible way he could imagine to. The rest of them (beginning and middle) is hardly ever boring though. He's a very good writer up until the end.
  2. That sucks. It also makes sense, but also sucks.
  3. If you're doing this perfectly legal, why don't you make the first torrent-file and seed it to those who want it? 'slike, if it's going on there anyway you might as well be the one to promote yourself. You can also give it a Creative Commons license. From Wikipedia Wikipedia also has a list of projects using CC-licenses. Wikipedia is (of course) included.
  4. If something like the MAI went ahead, or the paranoid vision of it what with its Corporations suing governments for making laws that damage the bottom line, who would enforce it? Would it be like a Corporate UN, sanctioning unco-operative gov'ts? What kind of action could it take to maintain the agreement's integrity? (y'know I'm thinking PMCs, but what other options might there be?) Would something about that be amusing enough for a game? The amusing thing is probably the after-math. What happens in a nation after it has unjustly been exposed to fascism. You'll have lots of violence, poverty, scavengers, etc. I don't think that a Corporate UN is likely. But look at TRIPS (also on Wikipedia) for instance. Make China and the US and the European Union tie themselves up in major treaties on mutual enforcing of the same laws, and strike down hard on anyone else. Particularly China would have a very advantageous position. They'll just block export to people who don't obey them. Also assume that the EU will probably be divided. Europe simply isn't a place that will unite itself readily within the next century or so. The UK regime alone remains faithful to the US regime, both of which have been almost entirely abandoned by both populations. That will continue. France and Germany, difficult to say. A trade blockade from China against Europe would have the following consequences: we would not have clothes, not cars, quite a lot of engineering would go. If China protects Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Bangladesh and Indonesia we will also not have frozen fish, frozen vegetables, nowhere to buy hookers and go on holiday, and these are just the things I spontaneously think of. The chances that we'll be struck by vigilanteism is probably increasing by the minute as well. That's a game setup. It would vary what objective the vigilantes have, though. The police forces everywhere are becoming increasingly more violent and authoritive, and their mandates are extended.
  5. Oh! It would make a nice application for charisma, social hacking. We'd get a much much larger war in that case. The question is how long the US economy could last such an extensive action. Even now, they're not doing optimally well so we'd look at a possible Cold War situation where the US tries to lead the war but can't and therefore has to struggle to fail to lead and may eventually crash in 50 years or so. Granted quite different from the Cold War in which one of the opponents was real, but still? You answered your own question here "Corporations" could be assigned a whole new level of evil. That's ace! I may steal your joke and use it in other situations. Interestingly enough, the Roman empire passed a law which granted power over the state to a dictator (like the NSHS presidential directive does) about 300 years before the Empire fell apart. The US has been following a Roman time-line on fastforward, kind of. I think I mostly oppose the semantics. Amoral and corrupt insinuates that they don't have any standards, which they quite possibly do. It's better with "greedy" or "slick". For actual game-play, shouldn't emphasis lie on saying as little as possible with as comforting words as possible? Like in Real Life, but worse. Like how you used defended a humane slavery model? For some people, slavery might be the only way in which they can still build a life for themselves. Condemning the practise would be like telling them they're not worthy of a decent life. By ensuring that these people always have a last resort from which they can build up the rest of their lives under reasonable conditions, we show compassion. Therefore any bill that condemns the practise is bound to do humanity a great injustice. I think it would work so long as there are no nations. For an American country, it would be better to ensure that America remains seeing as the company is likely to have built their business model after American laws. With a Chinese company, they probably wouldn't care as much, though. Tieing back to the origins of the thread; EU-politics, maybe Lobby groups pushing for international harmonisation and multi-lateral, unfavourable for everyone trade agreements could play a bigger role. By assumption, with a time-line starting in 2007, we'd also have to take into account Russia. According to a lecture I was at just two weeks back we may assume they'll have a reasonably strong economy in only 10-15 years (anyone up for a discussion on Hated By All Vladimir Putin? I happen to favour him >))
  6. In the context of ASBO:s it's even more funny: they are NOW legislating a sword ban in a nation that legislated against disturbing your neighbours to the point of throwing people into jail(!) almost 10 years ago. I think this is because British people in power are idiots. Instead of clearing up simple, everyday crime like destruction of property and small-scale mugging (like, "oh, that rascal took me wallet, mate!") they've went all out on terrorists that don't exist. We have a Swedish author (best-selling, 3 million copies of his last book sold in Sweden alone (we're 9 million people, go figure - I didn't even buy it so god knows whose purchasing all those books)) saying a while back that "These are terrorist laws in practise. They only need to be used when there is no proof of criminal activity. Because with proof, there's nothing that stops you from convicting these so called muslims in Swedish courts. We do so everyday. Terrorist laws only need to be applied when these so called muslims are innocent with respect to the law." (Jan Guillou, original quotation in Swedish, my translation may be off). Comment to my last post: basically, in the UK and everywhere else, we're paying loads and loads of people to walk around being suspicious and paranoid on a day-to-day basis. In the end, for these officers only the idea that they'll find something suspicious will be enough for them to see it everywhere. That's why my post wasn't so much an attack on armed citizens or armed officers than it was a questioning of paying people to paranoically pursue criminal activity that they're constantly told may look like a citizen going about their business. Because we're all citizens going about our business, and it doesn't do much good for them to suspect us.
  7. Well... In the last 15 years or so (which is about as far back as I'm capable of remembering news at all) I've only heard about once or twice that the Swedish police ever injured anyone with shooters, while I've heard several times about US police brutality killing citizens who were armed, so I challenge your position.
  8. I think it's a reasonable response: they're paid to walk around being paranoid and offensive and suspicious 8 hours a day and get to carry guns while doing it. If you're paranoid and carry a gun you'll have a considerably lower threshold for shooting than if you were paid to be friendly and loving while carrying a gun, or if you were paid only to be friendly and loving and not carrying a gun at all in which case you probably wouldn't ever shoot anyone while on duty. It's like at airports. I was stopped in customs, kind of, because they were getting all excited about the cell phone in the pocket of my jacket and I was all "huh? huh?" and they were gathering around their telescreen pointing and squeaking and asking me if there was anything in my pockets. Logically, it should have been my keys (a sharp object, actually several sharp objects) but the poor man who'd started the pointing and squeaking looked really sheepish when he realised what he'd been making a fuss about :/
  9. I told you earlier today, but I think it's more like courting. Most European states have state financed campaigns and anonymous donations. Id est, you can make a donation to a political party for when they run their campaign, but nobody will know whom the donation is from so it's not actually lobbying. Or, you know, you know where the money is from but it's not officially from the person you know it's from so the donation doesn't actually oblige you to anything in the same way that US lobbying money obliges you. Gah. Instead it's incredibly common with business lunches and seminars and things. Whoever makes the best power point presentation and is able to make most appointments for talks gets most attention to their issues. That's partly why the FFII has failed with running a successful European debate - since they're a non-profit organisation they don't have enough money to sit through expensive lunches. I don't understand this idea at all. With a Global police action it's possible that he would have had more support from people who did not support him in the current crusade. Let's remember that in the UK, Spain and in, for example, Denmark, the whole Christian Crusader overtones were not present when they propagated the war, though. I also think that if Bush Jr had not used religious tones in his speeches on terrorism and the axes of evil the way he did, his support on the home arena would have been considerably less. Maybe the US population would have even lost faith in the war much sooner, there'd have been louder protests a lot sooner. They'd have still gone to war, but we'd have seen Vietnamlike protests by the end of 2005. In short: the war would have been harder to sell at home, but easier to sell abroad. This I believe. I think that in order to push for all of the reforms that he has pushed for, Bush would have had to resort to some kind of Christian vs Muslim rhetorics sooner or later. "Terrorists" are such an abstract group to handle, while "Islamists terrorists" have very clear connotations to "Muslims" which gives you well-defined enemy group to host bad sentiments against. I think I'd like to stress the unlikeliness even more. The Coca Nationalism has mostly to do with the medicinal drug status of coca leaves in that region. In many places in the Andes, chewing coca leaves is used as a stimulant to cope with living on such a high altitude. Either that or tea. According to, amongst others, the US, they would have to stop growing the culturally omnipresent plant altogether. Also, since the region is poor, a lot of people actually make a living out of growing coca leaves. I don't think FARC will have the economy to go all out on the US any time soon. Also they've previously worked only with abductions. It's far more likely that they'd, say, abduct the US ambassador in Colombia or Ecuador, and that this would cause this "second 9/11". However, consider Japan as a possible place for action as well: Japan is not allowed its own military since the US victory in ww2, right? But now, the US seem willing to allow them their own military again. Take also into account that the nationalist movement in Japan is on the rise again (they recently elected a semi-nationalist prime minister if I'm not mistaken). Now, imagine that some nuthead sect in Japan were to get ahead of themselves and spread poisonous gas around a US military base in, around or near Japan. Or even several bases. Other things that may unsettle the US presidency is if the American citizens would suddenly start objecting to what is happening. There will be an election next year (2008). Say if one of the candidates gets shot, for instance. You only need a single madman for that to be true. The same goes for any present member of the senate or White House. Someone gets shot, and an anonymous person writes a note to the biggest newspapers in the country. It's all over the news, the president goes "Uwaaah!" and calls on NSHSPD. Bah. The US will in that case sooner invade Iran. Russia isn't all that just now, but their economy is growing rapidly after a few years of efficient ruling by Vladimir Putin and they also have their old reserves from Soviet. Nobody who has previously attempted to invade Russia has succeeded. Not Napoleon, not Hitler, not even Genghiz Khan, and not the Arabs. The US stand a chance only if they blow them to bits, and that isn't helpful when you want to get their assets. Building up the infrastructure after bombing it to bits would be ridiculously expensive as well. EEK! Slavery is just...evil. It scares me badly. Ah, no. Like DogSoldier is saying, we're actually trying to build a new class of slaves although indirectly. "You load sixteen tonnes, and what do you get? Another day older and deeper in debt. St Peter don't you call me, coz I can't go... I sold my soul to the company store." If you can't buy the people directly, make sure they're indebted to you enough that they wont ever be free of making down-payments. It's indirect slavery, keeping people in debt. Uhm... Basically, described above is a market idea. It's different from the cotton slaves in that cotton slaves were kept because the subjects of those working conditions were not thought to be humans. But I'm not sure if it makes it better that you willingly expose people you know to be human to ownership like that. YES! YES! Brilliant idea! Owwww.... It reminds me of this thing I read a while back on the topic of immaterial property. Someone had said somewhere that ownership is what is the foundation of our society, and that people must be allowed to own things (from the context: "be allowed to own immaterial property") because that's how society works. I commented with ownership of slaves, that has been accepted practise for well over 2000 years but that we would consider inhumane and abnormal today. However, a member of the current Swedish parliament did keep an illegal immigrant as a housemaid (paid, but all the same) for well over 3 years prior to becoming a member of the parliament, I think. Also, she (the maid) was not registered as an employee during this period. This is probably even likely, at least over the course of the next 10 years or so, provided the duration takes the right turns. It's not amoral, nor is it corrupt. This is basically a struggle of wills, and of ideologies presenting ways to make sustainable futures for a major part of the population. Any person who would consider (modified) slavery to be a last resort (like prostitution) for people who cannot otherwise support themselves would probably consider that as an option because they firmly believed that it would be for the best if people could do these things to help themselves. It's like, it's not amoral, sometimes life's just tough and you gotta deal with it. It's an SEP (Somebody Else's Problem). I've only ever met one supporter of prostitution who said he'd gladly let his daughter do a working trial at a legal brothel.
  10. US-Centric Cyberpunk is reasonable. Everything that happens in the US happens here sooner or later. Most European anti-terrorist legislation is harmonisation attempts with the US. The Japanese economy is completely dependent on the US economy. 9/11 has made stuff weird, but not nearly as weird as another 9/11 would. With the wrong top-dog in Washington, we'd have a tyrant running the most powerful nation in the world. NSHSPD grants full power to Top Dog. Finland has crazy immigration laws, so I don't think they'll last for long, but replace it with Korea. Drug Barons could be replaced by corrupt politicians (they exist EVERYWHERE!), conglomerate owners, weapon retailers and oil sheiks as well. According to this report, there are allegedly more slaves today than there were 150 years ago and (drawing a quick parallell to ownership of immaterial property) since owning stuff is a sacred right of every man, you may also spice things up with Slave Conglomerates! Whoopah!
  11. It does, except your premises are incorrect. Your initial example was one with a middle class British girl you likened to a goth. Usually violent crimes, such as going rampage on a school with a machine-gun, is not something that middle class people do. Globally and locally, more violence happens in places with fewer resources to share. Provided we don't increase the economic gaps between rich and poor individuals in the west, we will most likely have a status quo where goth moslems will keep listening to the Qu'ran at home feeling rebellious against their Christian overlords (oooooh). However, since I believe that we *will* increase economic gaps between rich and poor individuals despite all evidence pointing to that its bad, your outline I think makes sense. The best part about keeping a game in a contemporary setting is that hopefully you will have a good knowledge of how things work usually in society today. You can easily address such things as hearing a random clip spoken on the radio, what it might be about and how it would be angled. How often do they show Arabic nations on the news unless someone is burning a flag, or some extremist bombed themselves to death? Do they ever just go out shopping? I always wondered... (I'm ironic, I know they do. ) If you want to play in the US, which a lot of people do (like, US setting), an obvious event to include could be "another 9/11" which would trigger the NSHSPD and make the president dictator. Intrigues *would* ensue, but what kind is not up to me to say.
  12. I would, darling, but you know he's across the sea. I think that malek77 was more to my point: this isn't really a European tendency in modern law. It's a tendency everywhere. NSHSPD, Patriot Act, and the IRTP Act of the US are equally bad. The world is going Cyberpunk. If you want to make a cyberpunk game in a contemporary setting you'd likely do very well. If you want the surveillance to be more complete, you could maybe skip ahead two or three years. We also have a perfect Netrunner theme: file-sharing. The War on Whatever (=drugs, terrorism, crime, etc) gives a perfect violence theme if that's what you want. Like in I, Robot, but you choose to play someone who gets caught in some unlikely story and has to go underground and get involved in nasty business. edit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sdHtW_81kwg is a movie clip on Youtube which is perhaps more entertaining than reading US Government reports.
  13. We are fortunate to live in interesting times. As has xkcd.com web comic artist already explained. So, because I'm geeky in way incomprehensible to normal men (and roleplayers, and most women as well), I figured just now that isn't it really like we don't need Cyberpunk literature anymore? We have a perfectly functioning index of European law called EUR-Lex. It's not fiction, but it fits the cyberpunk genre perfectly. We also have the national legislations of EU members and of the US, and if we're willing also Hongkong and Japan, whose business climates are seriously awkward when it comes to copyright. For offenses against free speech, China, Iran, US and EU safety commissioner Franco Frattini stand out (I'd get links, but you'll just have to ask, I'm just babbling now). And yes. I'm hoping that at least ONE OTHER PERSON will go completely geeky on this too, so that we may spend all eternity mapping the European legislation and spend entire nights ranting about the general outrageousness of the situation, ultimately collapsing in our caffeine highs from the sheer irritation. Alternatively, I can be the geek and someone else can be my trusty side-kick.
  14. It seems to me this project is mostly about making Middle East void. If it's void, it's uninteresting, so just declare it void and leave it at that. You don't need a whole theory behind it. It was nuked, end of story, baibai ME. If you do want an interesting background to the Middle East in 2020, dating from 1997, you should know that most countries were rather stable around that time. The instability we're witnessing today has to do with two major attack wars by US et al in the beginning of the 21st century. Around 1997 there was no cause to believe that they would suddenly go rampant on themselves. Consider you were living in the Middle East and were of some ethnic origin, no matter which: would you really nuke your own income source? Your own infrastructure? It's equivalent to supposing that the Soviet Union or the US would have released their weapon arsenals on themselves instead of the enemy during the cold war. My suggestion is: destroy the oil with bacteria, let the society wither. Like DogSoldier says, destroying the oil is all it really takes to make it havoc. The self-nuking theory seems too far-fetched.
  15. I heard that this is... If not a hoax then at least an exaggeration around the time the news were released. Dr Moller apparently is the kind of guy who gets a brilliant idea and sort of throws something together but then isn't really capable of making it practically possible. Kind of. Can't find my reference now.
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