Sunday, October 28, 2007

Alan Johnston's Story

A really amazing report from the man himself, well worth a listen.

Fair Trade Tirades

Yesterday I was in a café, which (among other coffees) sold fair trade coffee from Indonesia. The problem was, it /only/ sold fair trade coffee.

I never buy fair trade products. Why?

Fair trade implies that other types of trade are /not/ fair. In fact, trade is a wholly voluntary activity, by definition it only takes place when both buyer and seller are satisfied with the deal.

Fair trade gives consumers and producers wrong minded incentives.

Western consumers believe that buying non-fair trade products from developing countries is detrimental to those countries - which is clearly not the case.

Producers are lured into participating in markets (like the volatile coffee market) with the /hope/ of better long term prices, rather than diversifying into other more stable markets. The costs of employment increases which increases unemployment in societies where underemployment is endemic.

Compared to buying fair trade, donating to charity is a less destructive way of helping people out, it may take a bit more of an effort, but at the end of the day your Euro will be more effective.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Pro Evo 2008 on the Wii

Had a glance at the newly released Pro Evos on Xbox and PS3 on Friday - looked like the same as Pro Evo 6 with new licks of paint - definitely not worth €500+.

Saw this by chance, and was blown away...

Football & Globalisation

Economist Dani Rodrik asking some interesting questions about football and globalisation.

My take: globalisation pushes up the standards of football played and makes competitions more competitive and entertaining, which can only be a good thing!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Me and Jay

Me and JayZ have been through some tough times together; back in the day while I was struggling through college his lyrics would punch me straight in the stomach and goad me back on my feet. At his best he's like a lyrical fight club.

[Marilyn Manson's Holy Wood was also an often needed brutal shot of adrenaline back then too]

Jay's last album was dodgy (who said rapping is a young person's game again?!) but with songs like Oh My God on his new record there's always that hope that he'll get back on track.

[Btw, JayZ/DangerMouse's Grey Album is THE best album of all time - bar none]

Saturday, October 20, 2007

WPA with RT2500 on Ubuntu Gutsy

I've just upgraded to Ubuntu Gutsy, had a bit of a problem with WPA this time round too, but fixed it by removing the "network-manager" package. So if you include that step for in my Feisty howto it should you should get WPA to work on both Feisty and Gutsy.

[BTW, that howto is by far the most popular posting on this site - even though I am certain my regular readers wouldn't know a Kernel module from a Beowulf cluster :)]