Clinton's Digital Divide NewMarkets Tour
matusiak at hotmail.com
Thu Apr 6 16:30:48 EDT 2000
okay everybody, i have been trying to go back and re-read all the posts
before further comment, but my connection is atrocious. sorry it has taken
so long for me to get back into the fray...
firstly, on the religion tip: i didn't mean to bring religion into this,
but to me it all (politics/government) appears pretty well veiled in
religion anyway. and i don't even want to get into a low-bandwidth, online
discussion of how or why i think that. i consider myself an aetheist
(recovering catholic), thus most of my comments on religion are sarcastic
and/or non-sensical anyway. so i guess i should "personally ignore the god
also, i never attributed _anything_ to any book, bible or otherwise. sorry
for the inference, but i was just hawking a common phrase.
secondly, technology may be all around us, but how many folks look at these
tools as "computers?" outside of the prevalence of technological devices, i
was (still am) drawing a parallel between this topic and the rampant
anti-intellectualism that has plagued our country for (seemingly) forever.
it's just not that popular to be "smart" (or whatever term you wish to
substitute in there). now, for the most part, i think this is slowly
changing. as we expand into a global economy and folks realize that there
is more out there than their backyard, other cultural influences are pouring
into the u.s. of a. and we may be enjoying a new wave of thought-positive
emotion. but in general, i think this is a great dividing line between
"rich" and "poor" cultures.
concerning B's post, i agree strongly with her that children are less afraid
of technology and more likely to get into it. i also agree with the comment
"especially if the subject allowed them to produce something quickly" and
worry that these machines would make great Quake 3 gaming consoles, but when
it came down to more complex tasks which took longer to create and even
longer to reap the benefits, that they would fall out of favor with the
majority of students.
nextly, i imagine there is a good bit of offline (perhaps even online?)
speculation as to my own personal political affiliation. i am NOT a
conservative republican. i am NOT a liberal democrat. i think the
two-party system is a (non-humorous) joke that is destroying our country in
a lot of ways. politically, i most closely resemble a libertarian.
philosophically, i find an egalitarian approach most beneficial. i am not
trying to take opportunity away from women, minorities, the poor, or anyone
for that matter. i _would_ like to take opportunities away from those folks
who are ungrateful for what they have received in this life (from whatever
source) and redistribute. seeing as how i cannot do so, let us move on.
i thank the folks who replied, as most of them clued me in to an interesting
point which i was missing. "how can you be interested in learning about
something that you don't even know exists?" this is a great point. in
fact, the closest i could come to de-bunking it is to compare the internet
and current technology to jesus christ, coca cola, and pokemon. if there is
any one person on this earth that hasn't at least _heard_ of these things, i
would like to meet them. but, aside from that, we *do* need to get this
knowledge out to people. it *should* be part and parcel for the "haves" to
help out/assist the "have-nots." however, i hold serious doubts about what
portion of the "haves" possess such altruism.
what my whole beef boils down to is this:
i do not want to see yet another flawed social program take off like
wildfire only to be shot down later, or worse, falter on it's own weak
foundation. i am not sure that this broadband mega-cast is the correct
solution. in fact, i do not know what the best solution is/would be. that
is one of my problems in general and in specific with my tirade of an email
from yesterday. taking strong tack on an issue, but failing to offer viable
solutions. in thinking about it all in greater detail last night, i thought
that some type of program which at least requires some initial incentive on
the part of needy individuals would satisfy my gripes.
i.e. essay or project contest in schools and for those kids who actually
took the time and effort to say "hey, i'm interested in this stuff. let me
in.", well then give that little boy/girl a PC and heck, throw in the DSL
line. nextly, set them up with outreach volunteers to give them training
and encouragement. Add to that parents and teachers to assist them in
achieving their goals. for those that want it, i am all for handing them
the golden key. but blanketing the country with valuable tech, well that
just sorta irks me.
*special aside* i do NOT even want to get into what i think of the current
state of "parenting" in our world, but we'll just assume we're dealing with
folks who care what happens to their offspring.
and on another level:
"digital divide" and other political buzzwords that are batted about really
get my blood boiling. i really cannot stand the way issues are simplified
and glossed over in this country. i understand that things must be
explained in a way that most people can understand, but when it comes to
actual planning and implementation of government process, we wind up getting
half-solutions to important problems. then the next guy in line can parade
about, exclaiming how terribly his predecessor failed to solve anything.
then taking things in an entirely different direction for 4 (or more) years
until we reach the point of "no solution will help us now."
lastly, i want to personally apologize to any and all folks whom i might
have offended with yesterdays post. i am not necessarily reversing what i
had to say in order to placate anyone, i just wanted to offer this as a
(attempted) clarification of my remarks. things can get heated when
art/religion/politics come into play and as a polite young boy, i should not
have been shooting off at the mouth (hands).
good discussion however, and as per usual, i learned something.
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