Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Washington Post GlobalChat

Today we invite you to click on the talking heads and go over to Washington Post GlobalChat.

The question Tuesday was: From where you write, who's gaining power in the world, who's losing it, and who is coming in fast from the outside?
- David Ignatius and Fareed Zakaria

the highway scribe's answer: Working concentrically outward, highwayscribery reports that in-close, the whole arc of artists and cafĂ© lifestyle types are feeling pretty chipper. “Looney left” in opposition to the war, right on almost every score, a lot of people owe them an apology. Folks the world over, meanwhile, thank them – whether it’s a resolution in the European Parliament or the headline of a cheeky British daily – for six years of activism, anger, desperate filibustering, and opposition to the prophets of shock and awe.

Not too sure whether to place a resurgent China next to a sinking U.S., because the boundaries and borders mean very little. Both propose economic schemes based on old paradigms of perpetual expansion and devoured resources. Rather than different, Red Capital and Wall St., represent a kind of hermaphrodite juicing the same seamy system. China rises only with the help of the wanton profiteering from its ostensible “enemy.”

The left-wing. Why not? You won’t read it in “The Economist”, but Berlusconi’s out, Pelosi’s in, British Labor is holding fast, and Zapatero is quietly revolutionizing Spain. In Latin America, Bolivia, Venezuela, Nicaragua (sort of), Brazil, and now they tell us, Ecuador have all turned to the sinister hand. The loser here is globalization, that strange configuration the people of the world were told was inevitable, and which has left them more insecure economically, but blessed with a variety of consumer choices they can’t really afford.

Moises Naim’s request for thought on the role of microplayers, “from Al-Qaeda to You Tube” seems a bit widely cast, but we think big media’s losing out, even as it grows, or the highway scribe wouldn’t be sitting here, a benighted GlobalMaven, writing on world affairs in a bathrobe. the scribe doesn’t mean losing profits, because the enemy (bloggers, video-makers, do-it-yourself novelists) aren’t moved so much by those demands (desires?).

What big media may be losing is control over national and international narratives. At lower levels, in boutique niches, and on PostGlobal chat, Kurdish nationalists are taking over the alternative media forms, infusing their passion into a world story that had previously excluded them.

(the bit about the Kurdish nationalists is an inside joke for folks who frequent GlobalChat. They sort of hijacked a discussion a month or so ago).

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