Thursday, March 23, 2006
Saturday, March 18, 2006
My mind is on a revolution right now. Yesterday I went to watched an excellent movie, "V for Vendetta", screenplay by the Wachowski Brothers, who produced the Matrix Trilogy. In it the masked hero V is a revolutionary terrorist set to topple the Fascist British Governement in an imaginary near future world. The character is very artistic with a love for drama and everything said by this supposingly psychotic person turned captivatingly poetic. "The blowing up of the parliament is just a symbol, but symbol give people hopes". (Incidentally in real life the leader of the Zapatista revolutionary movement in Southern Mexico, Subcommader Marcos, is also a man perpertually behind a mask and speak in poetic terms.)
The French Revolution, the Bolshevik Revolution, the Fall of the Berlin Wall, sometime I wonder what would be like to be in the middle of these historical moments when the mass rise to create a new order to the world. What would it be like to feel the same sense of hope that those people feel, which compell them to challenge the establish authority? Incidentally, I started reading some Karl Marx in my Development course. (Marxism branched out into an important view on International Development) I found what Marx said to be also very captivating. In Matrix the Wachoski Brothers weaved a basic fundamental philosophic question of 'What is Real?' in the plot, in V for Vendetta I found the dual did the same thing with some Marxist ideology. Some people may laugh off the Fascist world in the movie to be too remote and imaginary but Marx said the states are a product of 'constraint of violence exercise by a few against the rest'. So if we cut and slice the world we live in, we can also piece out the Fascist world enacted in the movie. The core of Marxism is the historical force which will eventually drive a social revolution, in which the suppress social class will rise against the ruling class. The battle begins at an ideological level, when the emerging ideology will dominate over the ideology of the oppressors. In the movie, all V did was spreading his revolutionary ideology and BANG! the whole country echoed and put on his mask. A symbol of sharing his hope and optimism. So what is my recommendation: watch the movie and read some Marxism.
To finish off I read that a new video game, A Force More Powerful, has just been release, in which you have to mass the crowd's support to bring about a 'Non Violence Revolution" in a dictator ruled country, by controling element such as Protest, Hunger Strike, Fund Raising etc.
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Unitus is an international organisation that promote Microfinance by funding promosing Microfinance Institues (MFIs) around the world. They have a video which give an introduction to what Microfinance is and how it impacts the lives of thousands of people in poverty.
Another organisation Grameen Foundation has just formed a company in India called IndCo. Its aim is to form a bridge between the poverty alleviating MFIs with the internation capital market. IndCo. will package Microfinance loan portfolio and sell it off to the capital market. Microfinance loan is becoming an asset class which people can invest like any other investment tools such as funds and equity. this is good in a sense that more money will become available to the MFIs but sceptics do fear that commercial influence will affect the poverty alleviation goals of MFIs.
More from Freeyasoul on: Micronfinance
Sunday, March 05, 2006
Kung Fu Hustle. Having the Jedi council descended in Causeway Bay is also fantasitc for the crowd eating on the street in Dung Lung Street.
Saturday, March 04, 2006
What a crappy life, had to worked all the time this week. Half an hour of lunch time in GoNature is all I have managed. Also the semester finally started and once again I am engaged in some cyber discussion on development issues. Hardly... this group of class mate has been pretty quiet, some didn't even log on the the forum all week. More on that when the course gets more meaty.
During this busy week, I have been keeping myself entertain with Michael Palin's 'Himalaya' on the ipod while traveling to and from work. It is the book that goes with the BBC documentry on Michael's journey across the Himalaya range. "This is Himalaya not from top to bottom, but from one end to another." He found "Himalaya is a battle ground of immense geological force but a centre of human tetonic as well." So this is a travelogue about the people and landscape of the Himalaya unlike the mountaineering account that I normally read. The book is not satisfying in a way as he hop from one place to another in the space of only couple mintue of listening. But these are places I have read so much about and just the name of these places (Hunza, Khyber Pass, Chitral, K2, Simla) is enough to swing my imagination at a tangent. Currently Michael is in Dharamasala, receiving an audience to Dala Lama.
On the front of Microfinance, I have finally fixed a date to visit the Beijing office of Planet Finance at the end of March. They have no funding to create a paid job for me right now, but it is good to be able to keep searching and keep hoping.
More from Freeyasoul on: Literature Travel