Monday, November 15, 2004

Accelerating Change and Horizons

While I work on my big post election essay... suggesting ways that Enlightenment Civilization can endure... let me recommend a few places to visit in the meantime.

An exceptionally cogent appraisal by Stephen Potts can be seen at Armageddon Cafe: Faith-Based vs. Reality-based America. 

Some delicious online comics await you at:
This Modern World, by Tom Tomorrow
Spiders on Electric Sheep Comics, by Patrick Farley


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One person posted a comment asking for a transcript of my recent speech at the Accelerating Change conference at Stanford University, where we blissfully looked farther ahead into humanity's future, beyond our nation's present (and hopefully brief) panicky rejection of tomorrow. A partial transcript can be found at the Accelerating Change website.

Some of the ideas can be found however in the transcript of the keynote address I gave before the Libertarian Party's national convention (proof that my political opposition to this administration is not merely based on "liberalism, but on a more broadly ranging belief in modernity). This speech is available on my website: Essences, Orcs and Civilization.

philanthropyAnother place where I explore the idea of "horizons" can be found at: Horizons and Hope: The Future of Philanthropy. Here I explore m 'EON' proposal for a philanthropic foundation, Eye of the Needle:

Is the world improvable by means of human intervention? The question can be debated endlessly on a philosophical level. But there is little argument over this basic premise within the community of those engaged in philanthropic activity. We share a common belief that vigorous investment and intervention in humanity can help humanity as a whole -- and countless individual human beings -- to achieve goals starting with basic necessities but extending to the limits of ambition.

Finally, let me leave you with some quotations:

On July 26, 1920 HL Mencken wrote the following in the Baltimore Evening Sun :

"As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

And - in light of the unbelievable scandal over touch screen voting systems that lack any audit trail, operating under closed source proprietary software made by companies with blatant GOP connections -

"It's not who votes that counts but who counts the votes" -- Joseph Stalin.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for introducing me to that Spiders story. I could see the kinship your works shared. I loved his unconvential style; it along with the horror story told here: http://www.dionaea-house.com/ keep me excited about the possibilities the net offers. It's not really cutting edge technology that excites me, just simple things well executed.

Michael Hatfield

Anonymous said...

That Mencken quote is so totally perfect that it raised my suspicions.

The "snopes" site looked into the matter. It turns out to be authentic:

http://www.snopes.com/politics/quotes/mencken.asp


Stefan Jones

Anonymous said...

I can recommend one tiny correction: Stephen's web site is called Armageddon Buffet, not Cafe.

I get that confused too, and I'm the web designer!

Beverly

Anonymous said...

DVDs of David's talk and debate at Accelerating Change 2004 will be available in the coming days. Please contact jerrypaffendorf@accelerating.org with inquiries.

This and other audio from the conference will also be appearing on IT Conversations.

Cheers,
Jerry

Anonymous said...

This seems to be someone's summary of the talk:
http://www.futuresalon.org/2004/11/david_brin_on_e.html

I'm sorry I missed it -- I didn't hear about the event, and I was busily wrapped up in the life of an undergraduate student.

I'm a big fan of the Uplift novels, and becoming a big fan of all this political commentary. If only my peers' "hate Bush" mentality and knee-jerk liberalism could be converted into an effort to change the concept of the left-right axis.

Looking forward to next November,

Daniel Foley

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