Nation Shmation

Well my computer has officially died. Sigh. And with it has gone 2 years of saved emails. You know the type: love letters and breakup letters with girlfriends, email battles with various trolls, fan mail… sigh… fan mail. All gone.

On the plus side, I caught the latest BBC production of the Sharpe series, starring Sean Bean: Sharpe’s Challenge, which takes place years after Sharpe has helped to defeat Napoleon at Waterloo, and is being sent post-retirement to India to do some stuff. Not up to its regular quality, but it’s good to see the character back. The big down side was seeing Mrs Salman Rushdie —Padma Lakshmi— in an acting role. Yes, she’s hot. But she can’t act her way out of a burlap sack. Not that that would be….um… possible….

We begin with a, um, post from Tandoori Beaver Tails.

We continue with this story from JJ, about an Indian man with deep abiding affection for Saddam Hussein.

You know the “Left Behind” series? It started out as a book and a movie and is about what happens to non-evangelical Christians at the time of the Apocalypse. (Summary: accept Jesus or be screwed). EK Hornbeck alerts me to the latest in the series’ evolution: a video game. Check out the Wired review here.

EK also sends us this bit about Canadian “hacktivists” developing software that allows citizens to get past the New censors trying to block your online content. They are being hailed by the anti-Communist types (rightly so, in my opinion) for the product’s ability to circumvent the controlling machinations of regimes like China. However, I don’t think they’ve thought it through sufficiently. It seems to me that such a product will more readily find a domestic home, since US and Canadian governments are trying everyday to tighten controls over our browsing; more to the point, the product would be best used by employees sick of the info-control asserted by the corporate masters.

So what do y’all think of this Quebec being declared a nation thing? Well, “The French” are a unique society within Canada, somewhat deserving of special attention with respect to their history. The problem, obviously, is that this thing was rushed through Parliament without much thought as to what it means. Who is “Quebecois”? Does it only refer to French-speaking white people resident in Quebec, and who can trace their families back to the original settlers? What does this all mean in practice?

This strikes me as a very weak political ploy by the Cons to pre-empt the Liberals doing a similar thing. It’s also an irresponsible move since it burdens the next government (’cause it ain’t gonna be a Conservative one) with having to deal with pretty much a guaranteed revived Quebec separatist movement.

I await your arrows and barbs.