I noticed a headline about Iran’s plan to build its own internet and the possibility of other nations following suit. The phrase “internet in pieces” appeared.
Who cares? The number of people wanting access to everything must be too small to register on any scale. I am interested in English (and, occasionally, German) sites, not unlike most people on this planet. Like it or not, English is the global language and US-style commercialism has not lost its appeal. The American Dream might have faded for people residing in the United States, but dreams of America and things American flourish in many a head around the world.
Today, I realized an advantage of the laptop computer, iPad, etc. When one reads an internet “newspaper”, one is not hidden behind a large piece of paper. One can placate one’s partner by still being visible, if said partner is the kind that suffers from lack of attention. No one can complain about another person disappearing behind the newspaper at breakfast...or any other time of the day. Of course, this might be a disadvantage for anyone wishing to avoid eye contact or a glimpse of a partner, whose appearance might have deteriorated since their first pain of Cupid’s bow.
Technology has solved the two opposite, age-old problems of marital discord...
I just read an article in Time by Harvard professor Joseph Nye about hard and soft power in international relations. He outlines changes in recent years, caused by shifts in national strengths and weaknesses and the rise of information technology. He explains difficulties facing governments, especially leading nations, because of easy access to technology and information.
I had a thought...
Predictions of the collapse of the American Empire and rising supremacy of China may be premature. In my mind (despite my continued harping on the country's shortcomings/failings), the US still has three major advantages.
First of all, it has the ability to fed all its citizens and have plenty left over to export. China has trouble feeding a growing population even with massive imports. A hungry population is a restive population.
Second is the dominance of the military industrial capability. China may have a huge army, all sitting a long way from the United States, and a minuscule navy. It will be easy to batten down the hatches and weather any storm (because of point one).
Third, and not mentioned in the above article, is the US dominance in information technology. Industrial capability may have declined, but many intellectual properties have been flourishing. Microsoft has been a leader for years, and Apple is growing everywhere. Google is the leader in search, but other machines are also American. Twitter and Facebook, used so effectively in recent uprisings around the world, have all come from a still-free creative environment. (One arena where the US has fallen behind is genetic engineering. Short-sighted rulings during the Bush/Evangelical Christian era set the country back decades).
The race is not over...and it won't be, until the human race manages to do what Jon Stewart outlines in his book Earth....
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.