Firstly, 25 minutes from the BBC World Service (a part of what used to be called the mainstream media (CNN, Fox, NYT, the Murdochracy etc) but which I now call the “infant media”. They are the infant media because of their ability to combine child-like attitudes (short attention span, regard only for the hand that feeds it, a belief that it is the centre of its world, a dubious truth and irrational behaviour) with real-world politics, producing simple responses to complicated questions that are, in the main, wrong.) The subject is the global water market and its near collapse last year. This market is dressed up as the global grain market because it takes 1000 tonnes of water to produce one tonne of grain. It makes for good listening.
Secondly, from Strafor . . . have a read and comment on this less worldy-conscious article that is more aimed at keeping up the US/Iran pissing competition. It is all a bit passé if you remember Tariq Ali’s analysis from an earlier Wonky-Thinking email. Stratfor touches on Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Iran but it rather misses the point. That point is that it is moot whether Iran actually gives more than two hoots about what America is/was or wants (check out Iran’s major business partners – they are specifically those countries that were having the meeting that a surprised Obama gate-crashed at Copenhagen – oops!). For my two cents, I would suggest that Iran may have been able to deal with its own attempted revolution in 09 and now. It’s domestic authority, however, has been weakened by what has gone on over the Shatt al-Arab in the Arab World. But, in its external affairs, it is all the more likely to continue its highly effective, low level sub-diplomatic destabilisation that America has been unable to defeat in Shia-dominated Iraq. So watch this space for more US sabre-rattling (but, please, don’t be swayed by the infant media) as it pursues its aims for its defence-driven economy and resource desires. If you like an ironic twist, link this article with the BBC one above – you might think that the struggle for oil might be both a touch misdirected and long-term in the world where the oil consumers might have died of hunger as they wait for the gas tanker to arrive.
It has been brought to my attention that some folk can get ground down or can have a low moment; especially having read or listened to some Wonky-Thinking emails. Some of you may find the world situation a little depressing for us and our children. I say please have some faith in the abilities of masses of people to make changes when they get together. It can and does happen, vide Tunisia, Egypt et cetera. It is possible to make changes. It just requires changing your self, acting locally and thinking globally. And our unconcerned governments will become more concerned.