Monday, December 11, 2006

crichton 2

Just another short word or two on the Crichton talk.

The main argument is (correctly) Westerners inhabit in an information technology. Information is the prime product of our society. The basic trajectory technologically is: hunter-gatherer, agrarian, industrial, informational.

With the rise of industrial technology over a long period of time there arose massive bureaucratic structures to regulate, soften the deletrious side-effects (where possible), and create standard rules/liability & penalties.

Things like Social Security, Governmental Organizations, etc. Or on a larger global sense with the rise of multi-national corporations, multi-national watchdogs (NGOs, World Bank, IMF, WTO).

We now exist in an information base and require a information superstrucutre/culture to regulate the industry. [The industrial era bureaucracies are failing because we are post-industrial....e.g. Social Security].

Crichton offers a few practical suggestions for scientific research. But in general, I haven't seen much on the question of regulation of information technology--only intellectual property rights but that's not what I took him primarily to mean, although that is included. This notion of rules/standards for information technology dovetails interestingly with the nexus of rule sets I've been exploring in the creation of a Dept. of Failed States/Reconstruction, along the lines of Thomas Barnett.

It's almost like the Domestic Policy equivalent/twin of the foreign policy Dept.


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