One Day Blog Gimmick

So, apparently, “The Blogosphere is in deep mourning” and It has consequently decided to stop writing about Its cat for a day, “in honor towards” the latest US shooting craze victims. All that with shiny, yet appropriately sober, webtwozero buttons, because the Blogosphere likes nothing like an easy cut-n-paste mirror-effect logo to put in Its sidebar.

While some might be prompt to point at a culturally self-centred inconsequential web fad with vaguely nauseating marketing overtones, I won’t.

In fact, let’s take it one step further!

As of today, Tuesday, April 17th, the official death count for the ongoing Darfur genocide clocks in at a little over 400,000.

By my own calculation, and using the ongoing rate for online death commemoration, this gives us a mere 33.2 years, which we will round up to 30, for simplicity’s sake.

And it is therefore with great pleasure that I hereby introduce the 30yearBlogSilence initiative. Forgive me if I haven’t got the shiny web buttons ready, but feel free to set up a website for it.

As for the starting date, I think right fucking now is probably a good time: go ahead, I’ll be right behind you.


  1. Hm. That’s a good start. Now, let’s take the 4 million people a year who die of drinking unclean water, and another 6 million or so who die from respiratory disorders caused by breathing smoke from cooking fires all the time. Plus people who are unvaccinated, and so on.

    Poverty is the big killer. Even what happened in Rwanda was small potatoes in comparison.

    Poverty. Focus on poverty. You can pretty much ignore war because, WW2 excepted, poverty kills way more people.

  2. Pingback: thoughts...
  3. Thing is, it’s actually fairly easy to do something about poverty.

    Two hundred dollars – not much, not a vacation, not a new car, not a fortune – is enough to get some people microcredit loans through outfits like the Grameen bank, or possibly Kiva. I think that a memorial for these people in the form of a microcredit endowment might be more fitting than simply shutting down blogs for a day.

    What do you think?

  4. Vinay

    Damn you, you’re gonna make me have to become serious two seconds, especially on such a hilarious topic as world poverty.
    OK. I so wish I could just agree with you without restraint, especially since we fundamentally do agree on what’s to be achieved and on some of the ways to do so. We certainly agree on the fact that doing something, ANYTHING, that involves getting off one’s fat lazy ass and contributing (money, time, whatever…) to a cause, is sure to do more than lighting candles, waving flags or polishing web buttons.

    However, I take exception to the traditional “ending poverty is easy, you just need to…” line of thought. It may seem needlessly nitpicky or impractical, but I am convinced it is this very lack of realism in tackling incredibly complex, difficult problems that has turnedd in the current general level of apathy of the industrialized world towards third-world countries. Telling people something is “easy” is certainly a good way to grab their attention, but also a very good way to lose it as soon as they realize things are not that easy or immediate as they were led to think.

    Solving poverty, solving wars, solving suffering in the third world… is not easy. Sending money to charity, sponsoring a kid in Somalia, loaning money to a farmer in Madagascar, is never gonna be enough to truly change those countries. At least it won’t, as long as your SUV’s gas comes from countries ruled by western oil companies, as long as your tax money goes to fund whatever the latest CIA’s dictator du jour is, as long as international financial institutions are headed by friends of Mr. Bush who are more eager to give a payraise to their fuckbuddy than ensuring the money they loan to countries truly goes to the people, not to their corrupt leaders, etc etc etc.

    Problem with many of the easy solutions, is that they would work if we were in a perfect world where corruption doesn’t exist, nor overhead, nor any of the thousand things that make a $200 million aid fund become a $0.1 share in the hands of the people who need it.

    All that being said, yes, I am aware microcredits precisely try to work around the overhead issue, yes, I know the money stands much better chance to land in the hands of the people that truly need it, and I think it’s a great idea, worthy of support, any day of the year. I am just afraid it won’t be enough to end poverty. It might take a whole lot more than that.

  5. I did not say SOLVE poverty – no, your $200 is not going to do a damn thing on the global scale. We both know that. BUT it is a tangible, measurable improvement. $200 turns into ten or twenty loans over the course of a couple of decades, which is a measurable number of lives improved in ways which are extremely durable and robust.

    Is my project. In mass production, $200 for a home and all essential services (drinking water, a stove 10 times more efficient than an open fire, electric light and a composting or other low cost toilet.)

    Public domain or GNU FDL – pick your license.

    Is it a solution to the entire problem? No. Is it tangible, measurable progress? Yes. In fact, we’ve got enormous interest from a couple of very large global organizations and the design is probably going to be presented to representatives from something like 50 countries in the next six months.

    Wanna come join the project, tear off a small problem (“can you still source IC3 batteries?”, “where do we get CCFL lights in Africa?”, “What’s the best material for this climate?”) and join the effort?

  6. um.. if it’s ok with you guys i’ll just keep right on selfishly ignoring any and all things that make me miserable – and death’s right up there.. I’ll also continue to take up valuable webspace with nattered crap – just because I can. and I DON’T HAVE A CAT.

    Does this make me a freak?

  7. If you will excuse me I am going to stay right out of this. The US tragedies are entirely self inflicted. I have no sympathy for them. Overloaded with serial killers? No problem. Give them the right to carry arms. Jeez. Its good training for perpetuating the slaughter in Iraq. Americans? They suck. Generally.

  8. You’re too young to be this cynical. Aren’t you? Wow, I just found you by accident googling chicken hatching looking for an image to decorate my blog post (which has nothing to do with chickens hatching; it’s about American ignorance). I’ll be reading you! You’re sassy.

  9. Guys the world is corrupt and can never change and since nothing last forever neither will peace or evil. And since the laws of society change because of opinion in the end it all comes down to opinion no thing can ever be right and nothing can ever be wrong so why am i living what is the difference if i kill my self right now why wait for my death. I think that if a true anarchy could exist and there would be no ruler than a peaceful nation could exist. and since i have chosen to question the morality of human nature and found out the lack of intelligence these humans have i will die unhappy. Everytime happiness comes by me i think about the starving kids in africa, india, pakistan, and a 100 other poor countries and i am sad once again. And in this capitalist nation of the united states i see people do not think of the starving kids and the poverty that resides they are all too busy with their materialistic things. i see kids talking about cars clothes jewelry in my school and when i start a conversation about the realism of the world and the isues of hunger and starvation they laugh as if i am telling a joke oh well this life of mine is nothing and all of you that think the point of life is to have fun can all go die. 🙁 :frown: :frown: :frown: :frown:

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