Star Trek Influences

Holm's blog, stardate 60386.5

Some time ago I watched a show on the discovery channel that actually got me thinking quite a bit. The programme was about how Star Trek had changed the world. The show was led by none other than William Shatner, captain of the USS Enterprise in the original series.

I did watch Star Trek when I was younger, the reason for this was my already big interest in space and astronomy. I never really realised until now what influence the show has had on me. Take for example my federalistic stance in politics, I am now pretty sure that this comes from me watching Star Trek, seeing the United Federation of Planets at works in a farly optimistic view of the world. Star Trek is also a show preaching the wonders of technology (this is what the Discovery programme focused on), and this is something that has definately shaped my life.

It should come as no suprise for those that know me that my stance is basically that the solution for most of the problems that we are facing in the world today lies in technology. Technology is infact the ultimate solution and salvation.

Technologies that have been directly inspired by the series are for example the mobile phone, QuickTime and the jet injector (known as the hypospray in Star Trek). There are several more examples of Star Trek inspired technology that exists today or is under development.

Now the only thing I am missing is those lovelly warp drive engines. I refuse to believe people who say it cannot be done. I'll hold my hopes for the unification of gravity and quantum mechanics, hopefully we will get negative gravity, or some energy efficient way to manipulate the gravitational field with magnetism (OK, now I am ramling about stuff that I do not even have the slightest idea of, so I'll stop while I still can).

Live long and prosper!


ITER Agreement Signed

Finally after so many years the EU, US, China, Russia and South-Korea have signed an agreement to build ITER, an international experimental tokamak fusion reactor.

The reactor will be the first step to working fusion power, and it will be succeeded by the DEMO reactor in about 30 years.

The fusion fuels available on the earth and in the rest of the solar system will basically last longer than the sun itself. This is a great leap forward for mankind and will in the end give us clean, safe and cheap energy.


I'm Back... Well Kinda

Some people might be wondering about what's going on and why the blog has not been updated for a long time.

Well, I have moved back to the Netherlands again and started work. Unfortionatelly, my work prevents me from being involved in politics. I will however try to write about technology whenever I have a chance to.

I am truly sorry for any inconveniances my absence have caused.


Happy 9th of May!

The heading really say it all. Happy Europe Day!


Swedish Consulate Grants Visas to Members of Terror Organisations

The Swedish consulate in Jerusalem just granted high ranking minister in the Palestinian government, and member of the terror organisation Hamas, a visa to the Schengen area; this while the French government denied giving visas to Palestinian MPs from Hamas.

The Swedish government will not meet with the terrorist who is invited to attend a meting with Palestinian groups in Malmö, but the event has put further strains on the Swedo-Israeli relations that was severely damaged after the Swedish foreign ministry pulled out the Swedish Air Force from a multi-national exercise in Italy. The exercise had been planned for months and was canceled when the ministry came to know that the Israeli Air Force had been invited to attend.

Of-course, this post is not really here to complain about Hamas, but rather the sloppines of the Swedish government in handeling visas. Interesting in this event is that a Schengen visa gives access to all of Schengen, including France; which by the way should have been asked about any objections to the issuing of visas. It is time to rethink how visas are issued to the EU, and centralise the procedure to the Union.


Stop Moving Around!!!

Although, while the heading could refer to me since I am moving to much it seem, what I am talking about is the European Parliament that is forced to move back and forth between Brussels and Strasbourg.

ELDR MEP Cecilia Malmström (who by the way fought against both software patents and the fascist data retention directive and is one of my favourite MEPs), has started a petition with the goal of making the commission take up the question. All that is needed is a mere one million signatures. Please sign her petition and help end the nonsense.

The petition is available on http://www.oneseat.eu/


Council member fired

The Swedish member of the Foreign Affairs Council, Laila Freivalds has been sacked as of today (although she claim that the decision was hers, more likely she was sacked by Swedish prime minister Göran Persson). The reason for this is her involvement in shutting down the Swedish nationalist party Sverigedemokraterna's web page.

After the page was shut down, she denied any involvement in the affair and placed the blame on one of her employees who allegedly acted on his own accord. However, after an investigation was started on the unconstitutional behaviour of the ministry of foreign affairs, documents surfaced that made it clear that the minister was informed about the issue before it happened.

This is a great day for friends of liberty and Europe.


Right to Publish

I just drew this in protest of the Islamic censorship of pictures of prophets. If anyone wants to know, the publisher and artist (that would be me) is a European living in Sweden.

The picture is free for use as long as you do not alter it in any way.


Questions that arise now are: Do I need to fear for my life? Do all Europeans need to fear for their lives? Do all Swedes need to fear for theirs? Will more embassies burn?

In Sweden, the government in the form of the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the secret police SÄPO have closed down the web pages published by the nationalist party Sverigedemokraterna. The government pressured the ISP Levonline into closing down the web pages after Sverigedemokraterna published caricatures of Mohammed.

SÄPO called Anna Larsson, vice president of the ISP and spoke about the threats that had been issued and SUGGESTED THAT THE BEST COURSE OF ACTION WOUD BE TO CLOSE THE SITE DOWN. The web pages was closed down by Levonline not long after.

At the moment of writing sverigedemokraterna.se is still unavailable.

The fascists in the present Swedish government must be stopped. Hopefully they will be fired in the next national elections in September.

JohanNorberg.net (en)
Sveriges Radio (sv)
Dagens Nyheter (sv)


At SvD.se we can read about the Iman Latifov's statement on the caricatures:

Latifov anklagade Jyllands-Posten för att ha grovt missbrukat yttrandefriheten och brutit mot Genèvekonventionen genom att hetsa mot religiösa grupper. Han krävde en "ärlig och sann ursäkt" av danske statsministern Anders Fogh Rasmussen och Jyllands-Postens chefredaktör Carsten Juste.

Roughly translated this mean:

Latifov accused the Jyllands-Post for gravely abusing freedom of speech and violating the Geneva convention through hate speech against religious groups. He demanded a "honest and truthful excuse" by the Danish prime minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen and the Jyllands-Post's editor Carsten Juste.

What? The Geneva convention deals with the treatment of POWs, wounded soldiers and sailors and civilians during a time of war and armed conflict.

Am I the only one confused here?


France Soir Editor Fired

The editor of France Soir has been fired by the Egyptian owners of the news paper. The editor's offence was to publish the Jylland-Post caricatures of Mohammad. The France Soir also published their own caricature on the front page, where Budah, the Jewish God, the Christian God and Mohammad are sitting together on a cloud.

The headline states that "Yes, we have the right to caricaturise God". And considering how many men and women who burned at the stakes for this right, attempts to silence news papers like this is a sign of enourmous disrespect for the dead.

france soir


Comment on the Arab Reaction on European Caricatures

On BBC we can read that:
Ministers from 17 Arab countries on Tuesday urged Denmark's government to punish Jyllands-Posten, the Danish newspaper that first published the caricatures, for what they described as an "offence to Islam".

Well, let me tell you, you wise seventeen (probably unelected) leaders. Your demand that the Danish goverment punish the people whom you do not agree with, and whose opinions you despise, are an offence against liberty, democracy and the free word.

I have two demands:

  • I demand at once that you punish yourself for these acts of disrespect.
  • I demand that you apologise to all friends of liberty and freedom of speech in the world.

I do not agree with what you say, but will defend to the death your right to say it.
- Evelyn Beatrice Hall


Legitimacy and Federalism

First, I'd like to apologise in advance for my spelling and grammar. But I am home, sick with the Chicken pox(!), and have a numb head. Complain in the comments section if you'd like.

Now to the issue. Today I will rant about legitimacy and federalism.

The problem with a lot of politicians, is that they do not understand. They do not understand that the legitimacy problems with the Union really are constitutional problems. The problems is the Council and the fact that the Union is still an international organisation in to many aspects; and that the Union is very complicated. The legitimacy is also a matter of how democratic and transparent the law making organisations are. These problems could be solved with a clear federal constitution, but seeing this is difficult for a person not interested in politics, which is the majority in my understanding.

The word federalism used in the previous paragraph, has been known as the f-word in some circles (the one who introduced this was actually no other than Marget Thatcher) and can be very sensitive. I've met several who just went pale in the skin when one mentioned the word "federation", but when asking them about the issues they had with the Union, and the solutions for these, a lot of the anti-federalists came up with very federal solutions for a lot of the problems, e.g. shift power from the Council to the Parliament. And this when not realising that the solutions was just what the federalists want.

I am not afraid to call my self a federalist (which should be clear for those reading this blog on a regular basis) and of course, being a federalist does not mean that you believe that everything from Brussels is good (a lot of the anti-federalists seem to believe that this is the definition of federalism). I am a federalist, but still, if you read this blog, you can find some substantial critique of the Union's architecture and it's policies, so how does this mix?

Federalism is belief in a form of government where the decisions are taken on the lowest level possible, preferably by the individual. A federalist accepts that there are questions that cannot be answered solely by an individual, a family, a municipality or even a state. Thus with a federal system we have a level of government above the states. In order to clarify, all decisions should be taken in a democratic form, and laws should NEVER be made by assemblies that are unelected.

Thus, a federalist typically want the Union to handle foreign policy, defence and internal trade, but the rest is typically supposed to be up to the states or at lover levels. More importantly, since the Council is unelected, we do not want the Council to exist in it's present form. It should either be abolished and hand over all their power to the elected parliament or transform themselves into an elected senate.

Federalism is not blind obedience to the federal government, it is the belief in a federal and democratic constitution, where decisions are taken on the lovest level possible and law is made by elected representatives and not indirectly appointed officials.


Stop the Tyrant

Jingle.se has published this image in protest against the Swedish minister of justice Thomas Bodström.

In my most humble opinion, this man is the most grave threat against the liberties of ALL EUROPEANS. Bodström was one of the greatest proponents for the data retention directive, and in the local state debate, he has even more wild ideas that would scare any true supporter of liberty and democracy.


Also, in other news, the Swedish goverment is preparing a proposal that will redirect all wire-bound telecommunications that cross the Swedish border to the FRA (the Swedish version of the NSA) head quarter. They in term will filter ALL E-MAIL and other electronic traffic, that is sent abroad, and in this case, abroad is as always defined as not in Sweden, this mean that any messages you send to friends and family in the EU, in Norway, the US, the Japans and other places, will be monitored. Allthough, while the FRA stated that they will delete any love mail caught in the filter, this deletion still relies on the fact that a human operator reads it and decides that it is not a terrorist message.

Time to get serious about encrypting e-mail.


Eat that Tony!

Mr. Blair who placed a lot of presteige in getting an agreement for the Unions budget between 2007 to 2013, have now after he handed over the precidency to Wolfgang Schüssel, received a major setback. The parliament overthrew Tony Blair's budgetary proposal with 541 votes against 56, plus 76 abstentions.

Blair's budget was to cut down Union spendings by 4.13 %, and this in a time of enlargement. The Union will also annex at least two more states during this time frame, maybee more.

The defeat of this budget is a welcome one.



DRM, No Thanks!

Everyday, we vote with our money. I usually have this in mind when buying stuff, but not everyone do this. In order to vote with your money, you have to state your reason for not buying the thing, otherwise, the producer will never learn what they did wrong.

Now, this is for the music industry (presently occupied with annihilating themselves): I herby pledge that I will never, ever buy a CD with DRM. Nor will I buy music online with DRM, except if there is a way to disable the DRM without loosing quality in the process.

You can pledge the same here