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Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Long live the blog!

First up, thanks to the many new readers of this site and your comments. There has been a massive jump in numbers visiting this blog and the amount seems to be increasing every week into the thousands! I think there is a growing realisation that the information we get on our News is incredibly biased and there has to be somewhere the other side of the story can be debated, so welcome one and all.

I wanted to take a quick moment to focus on some of the fascinating comments that many of you are making below each post. In particular a post from T (quick shout out, welcome T, yes I remember you from the ASPA awards, thank you for joining and thank you for your insightful thoughts). T posted a comment I wanted to pull out because I think its implications are very important. You can read his comment in full under The Students 4 Justice in Palestine Day of Protest Blog, but this line summed up his point,

“Bomber. You should disengage from arguments with people like some here on this page, because you're wasting your valuable time.”

Now I must confess I had no idea who Heine or Rick were, had no idea of their connection to the right wing blogosphere, and at first I had a chuckle and a certain amount of sympathy for Ts post, but I also feel that we are at point in Human history where the consequences of not being able to work together outweigh our dislike for one another. I look at the hatred that is shaping the violence and mutilation in the Middle East right now, and God forbid we ever get to the starting point on that circle of destruction by refusing to talk with each other. Beyond the current conflict, I honestly believe the looming oil shock and environmental catastrophe that we are facing, will demand our co-operation with each other if we are to continue as a species.

It seems so odd to me that so much talent exists within each of us, that 99% of our experiences as human beings connect us, yet we focus so much on the 1% difference, the skin color, the religion, the gender, the sexual orientation – these things are the points of difference we spend so much time focused on in order to alienate and not include.

My friendship with Tim Selwyn helps me get my head around this, I’m ‘very’ left wing (I think most of you can pick that) and yet Tim is ‘very’ right wing. But there are so many issues we see eye to eye on, we both marched on the Hikoi over the bridge protesting against what was being done to Maori, he arguing that property rights are essential, me because I saw it as blatant racism – and I think it’s from our willingness to find the common ground that can overcome our differences.

This site should be a fulcrum of ideas, it’s what Tim wanted, and its an idea I am endeavoring to continue while he is in prison, We could all simply remain on the blog sites we agree with, Christ I would live on Z.Net if I could, but it must be our ability to communicate with each other and listen to each other that can guide us if we hope to work together.

I also think that debate is essential for the thousands of visitors to this site now who don’t comment, but who want to read the cut and thrust of ideas, yes sometimes it can get snide, posting comments anonymously on your own computer in the middles of the night always leans to the bitchy, but they are sometimes also some of the funniest. But hugs aside, I believe the strength of your argument should be able to stand up to scrutiny, what is happening in Lebanon right now demands comments from us all as we try to make sense of the situation. I don’t believe there are any rational readers on this site who would condone the bombing of Lebanese civilians who are doing as they have been asked, and flee north, I don’t believe anyone here could condone Lebanese ambulances that have been bombed while trying to bring wounded to hospitals in Tyre.

Yes we will argue, yes it will be bitchy, but much better we debate than fight one another and as NZers, we have a role to play on the international stage to say things that many seem frightened to say. Challenging the status quo is not only our right, it is a responsibility of all members of a democracy.


At 25/7/06 12:41 pm, Anonymous deano said...

True Bomber. Even you have been making a little bit of sense recently...making me consider some of my positions... don't get too excited though!

Now back to our scheduled programming.

At 25/7/06 5:24 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

cheers. i agree with the sentiments, and i understand your diplomatic position. I also align myself with the majority of your considerations. My point, to rephrase and reconsider, is maybe simply that a lot of people (not including yourself but certainly including people like Heine) spend their days arguing on the internet or around tables and over beers, without any actual tangible result, other than the inflation of egos. I propose that the nature of some posts on this blog (im thinking of the ones rubishing your program, and totally dismissing your lengthy posts) are indicative of a small group of people with stedfast ideology who are simply not interested in open discussion and debate. I have been bogged down before and i offer a gentle warning to people blogging - to pick your fights selectively and be aware that while you're typing, there are other things happening.

At 25/7/06 7:04 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You mentioned communication, working together, etc. and I thought I'd bring up one of my pet subjects - fractal ecosystemic democracy. See http://www.dhushara.com/book/multinet/democ/wed.htm for an overview of the concept. Perhaps it's too radical and it's obviously challenging to set-up, but it's an idea that I keep going back to since I'm not getting any less jaded with the state of politics (and simplistic framing of issues by the mass media) as the years go by.

At least in concept it begins to address the powerlessness that we face, I'd be interested to hear what some of you think.

At 25/7/06 11:32 pm, Blogger Cactus Kate said...

Tim is not right wing. Never mind the "very".

I would describe him as an activist without a directional tag.

At 26/7/06 1:06 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cactus is right, he used to be right wing, verging on liberterian. Not now.

As for you Martyn I wouldn't call you very left wing either. Perhaps on the left of the Labour party, but not in Socialist Worker or Communist party territory.

At 26/7/06 7:27 am, Blogger Heine said...

I agree. If Tim was right wing then I have not seen any evidence of it. I think you are a nutball, but even you have mellowed through the years.

Am glad that you were thinking of me though Bomber. :)

At 26/7/06 10:31 am, Blogger bomber said...

........................................Well we can all mellow and share a coke with the world now can't we? Well, not me, I don't drink coke, snort coke, but don't drink coke. I'm glad me thinking about you keeps you warm Heine, just a quick note to the person who made the eco system post, http://www.dhushara.com/book/multinet/democ/wed.htm, what a fascinating site - VERY interesting points raised - do you think though that we have enough time to bring about those changes? I see only 10-15 years before the global feedback systems kick in and we are fucked - wouldn't armed revolution and the direct attack on all international companies have more impact? Could activist groups evolve quick enough to change things or would direct eco-terrorisim work better? Oh and in case anyone is confused about what I'm talking about when I say eco-catastrophe, let me explain myself. IF the Greenland Ice shelf collapsed into the sea due to global warming from our greenhouse gas emmissions, this would cause sudden desalination of the Ocean, which would shut down the North Atlantic current, which would freeze all of Europe solid and plunge the planet into an ice age.

At 26/7/06 1:35 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well I think we (theoretically at least) have enough time to make some meaningful changes to the way we do things, but by and large I suspect the majority of people won't seek to act until things are directly affecting them in a substantial manner, which is of course too late. The passive consumer culture we're in is a massive problem and barrier to any useful change in the short term at least, so realistically if 10-15 years is the deadline, we'll probably miss it.

As for the direct action/eco-terrorism, although I see it as largely justifiable* (for the obvious ecological reasons), it'd still create alienation and a backlash, and those that choose to believe the PR-spun science will continue to do so (again 'til its too late). I'm still in favour of passive protest action and monkeywrenching in the here and now - if you've got any good ways to catalyze change...

*so long as it doesn't target people

P.S Going to do some podcasting at some stage bomber?

At 26/7/06 1:50 pm, Anonymous An old friend said...

I still love you Martyn Bradbury. Even if other people dont, I do. Your a big fat prick tease, a humantarian, a activist and a peacemaker and I love you. You fucking rock my friend and you have thicker skin than a overweight Rhino with psorisis. Keep up the good work. Keep poking your nose into 'none of your business' and dont change one little bit as NZ and the world need more people like you.

At 26/7/06 2:52 pm, Anonymous Pubic Headdress said...

Blogs are for nerds. People with dandruff, bone breath and rancid smegma.


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