â€¦and you may want to skip this post if youâ€™re squeamish, or are about to eatâ€¦
Iâ€™ve brought you my Weaver Ants before. I think they are responsible for keeping my kumquat tree free of caterpillars, and the other day I saw more evidence of their carnivorous tastes.
Our smelly dustbin had maggots in it, and when I went out to pick up the newspaper I noticed the ants had done a raid and were carting off squirming maggots. As usual, I found the ability of ants to coordinate and cooperate fascinating, so I decided to take a few photos
Itâ€™s election time in Malaysia and voters will make their choice on the 8th March. One of the features of elections in Malaysia is an inordinate amount of bunting and flags, everywhere â€“ for example at an overpass near my houseâ€¦
Barisan Nasional (â€˜National Frontâ€™) is an umbrella group of three main parties that represent the main ethnic groups in Malaysia (Malay, Chinese, Indian) as well as some smaller parties â€“ some of which purport to be multiracial, but they tend to get support from one ethnic group or the other (the situation in East Malaysia is a bit more complicated, but follows the same pattern). Keadilan (â€˜Justiceâ€™) was founded by the Wan Azizah Ismail, the wife of ex-Deputy PM, Anwar Ibrahim , who was removed in 1998 following a power struggle with the PM, Mahathir bin Mohamad in 1998. Itâ€™s a long story, but after mass protests Anwar ended up in jail on charges of sodomy (later overturned) and corruption. Due to his prison time, he is barred from engaging in politics until April this year.
Just up the road there is an UMNO division building. UMNO is the dominant party in the Barisan Nasional (BN), and has been so for the last 50 years (technically, it was the Alliance before 1973). Continue reading "Election Rituals"
â€œThe internetâ€ doesnâ€™t have any information. The internet (â€˜INTernational NETworkâ€™) is the collection of hard and software that enables the storing and transmission of data. Basically, a massive version of the network in your office. You access the information, which is created and stored by individuals.
In practice, apart from people actively involved in its governance (The Internet Society), and network engineers of various types, â€˜the internetâ€™ â€“ as an empirical material reality â€“ has no practical prosaic reality for people (unless of course it stopped workingâ€¦). However, simultaneously, millions of people around the world (as in the comic strip above) interact with â€˜the internetâ€™ â€“ objectively, that is what they say is giving them information; so empirically we cannot ignore this. Just as if a person was to say aliens made her assassinate the president â€“ we canâ€™t locate those aliens, but â€˜theyâ€™ did make her shoot the gun.