Fake money, and a call to just action.

Since the Dutch East India Company of the 17thC, people have successfully organised trade and commerce globally, with wonderful benefits for society.  Population has taken off like that famous hockey stick graph.

But how do the last 50 years compare with the golden age? Since the banks obtained the power to counterfeit money , we seem to have a problem.

Living standards are dropping for most people, many billions (that didn’t just arrive last week) are now struggling for survival, with their health, life span and other opportunities invested into the disposable and polluting items that we purchase in the West with our digital money. This digital money is disconnecting us from real value.

If it did not exist, if we measured value in the only true sense, then an hours work in one country could be equal to an hour of work in another country. If you agree with this idea, then you can literally start to use it right now. You don’t need me, or a movement, or anything else to start.

All you have to do is to set up a co-op, formally or informally, and start to do business with those in other countries and barter time and services fairly.

When this becomes more popular, and when our impotent and hi-jacked global political system (strong words,  but that’s another blog post) is reclaimed, then we will be able to have plebiscites that literally include everyone.

Everyone with a mobile phone votes, and we have random paper votes in some areas for verification. If there is a proposal to decrease carbon emissions by 50% in the next 5 years to preserve the planet for our grandchildren, then that can be passed by global vote, and become binding on all corporations.

The corporations of today have lost the run of themselves. They no longer respect the needs of global society. They are obligated by law to preserve shareholder value, and that often leads to ruinous conditions for the two billion at the bottom. The same people that only get our sewage and waste trickling down to them.

Act now, act fast, and act for a long time.

Ubuntu here I come

I’ve heard a lot about Linux over the years, how it’s a ‘better’ operating system than Windows, how it’s going to break the domination of Windows (and how that’s a good thing) and mainly how awkward it is to use.

Well, here I go. There’s an old laptop of mine which has been giving more and more trouble recently with Windows, slow, infected, slow… annoying. Having invested too much time in trying to fix it, I’m off – I’m going to linuxland.

My research tells me that the only thing that I can’t do in linuxland is to use iTunes, which only really matters for my iphone. But, I’m not that attached to the iphone and my contract is up. Other than that, apparently Linux can do all by browsing, office work, music, video, and other bits and pieces in relative comfort.

The first thing that I had to do was to make a CD to install from (luckily I’d already had advice about which Linux to install) and there are nice and easy instructions for that. It took about 10 minutes to burn, I stuck it in the laptop, rebooted and a whole new desktop came up with one button ‘install ubuntu’. Nice start.

Clicked that and there were a few simple questions… now it’s installing. What will it be like?

(11 minutes later) Holy shit. I’m now editing this on my shiny new Ubuntu computer. It’s installed, it’s online and it’s about 10 times easier than windows.

Next challenge – sort out a photo organiser, music player, and office suite. So far it gets a huge thumbs up from me.

Any older relatives that might be wanting to start off on computers and will be starting from scratch… get them going on laptops with Ubuntu instead of Windows.

I met my first hiccup a minute later – went to Applications, Software Centre (instead of downloading installers like in Windows, you pick from a menu in the software centre)… and when I tried to select ‘Adobe Flash Player’ to install it, I saw an odd error. Luckily enough, a quick google solved it for me, and now it appears, the solution is updating my entire Ubuntu, so hurrah for that.

Onwards and upwards…

UPDATE:  March 22nd 2010

So far, it’s been incredibly reliable and almost everything has been working well.  There were two annoying problems and only one of them is partially solved. Flash wouldn’t work properly (since partially solved) and I can’t get the mic to work (so no Skype).

Other than that, it’s all good!