Monday Morning: Diasporic

Hope you’re having a pleasant holiday. I feel sorry for many East Coast folks who are wet due to Tropical Depression Bonnie today. We’ve got clear skies, a light breeze out of the northwest and 80F degrees here, which seems odd for Memorial Day in the Great Lakes State.

The pleasantness heightens the contrast of this embedded short film, Robots of Brixton by Kibwe Tavares and FactoryFifteen. It’s a nice example of Afrofuturism, this one blending science fiction, fantasy, and historical nonfiction from perspective of the African diaspora. We are treating technology as we do humans of color — as disposable inconveniences, seeing their frustration as nuisance rather than a angry plea for deeper consideration.

I’ll let you imagine the things I typed and deleted here about the future. That is the entire exercise of futurism — imagining what could be, will be, should be — and it’s not limited to nor should it be defined by the dominant culture. What do you imagine?

And what did they imagine, the ones we memorialize today? Did the future fail, meet, or exceed their expectations?

Blogger since 2002, political activist since 2003, geek since birth. Opinions informed by mixed-race, multi-ethnic, cis-female condition, further shaped by kind friends of all persuasions. Sci-tech frenemy, wannabe artist, decent cook, determined author, successful troublemaker. Mother of invention and two excessively smart-assed young adult kids. Attended School of Hard Knocks; Rather Unfortunate Smallish Private Business School in Midwest; Affordable Mid-State Community College w/evening classes. Self-employed at Tiny Consulting Business; previously at Large-ish Chemical Company with HQ in Midwest in multiple marginalizing corporate drone roles, and at Rather Big IT Service Provider as a project manager, preceded by a motley assortment of gigs before the gig economy was a thing. Blogging experience includes a personal blog at the original blogs.salon.com, managing editor for a state-based news site, and a stint at Firedoglake before landing here at emptywheel as technology’s less-virginal-but-still-accursed Cassandra.
5 replies
  1. bloopie2 says:

    Memorializing what could have been? One example: Princess Diana. I don’t know if she would have helped people of color, but she certainly would have been a global force for good. If you were around then, tell me you can listen to Elton John eulogizing her and not cry. I sure can’t.
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    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OefdqK3jKi0
    .

  2. martin says:

    quote”And what did they imagine, the ones we memorialize today? “unquote

    The one’s we memorilaize today are dead. Because they BELIEVED in the oaths they took when they undertook their journey meant something, the values they were taught were real, and they gave their lives in that light. Unfortunately..they were BETRAYED. My father especially. Fuck this country, fuck where it is going, and fuck all those who have betrayed every single value they fought to preserve.

    quote”Did the future fail, meet, or exceed their expectations?”unquote

    Ha. The mere fact a scumsucking lying maggot like Trump, or a serial criminal like Clinton can reach the present boundarys of possible ultimate power in the USA speaks volumes of what the future failed to reach their expectations. FUCK THE USA.

  3. martin says:

    ps..Let me put it this way. If YOU, were on a PBY, searching the Pacific Ocean in 1943, night after night, for the Japanese fleet heading towards Midway, after seeing hundreds of your buddys shot, beheaded, tortured, drowned, blown to bits and worse, and then, 40 years later, see what the country YOU defended has become… if you didn’t spit in it’s face..you are a fucking moron.

  4. Ian says:

    BBC Headline: Data watchdog rejects EU-US Privacy Shield pact
    .
    WHAT IS PRIVACY SHIELD?:
    “In February 2016, the EU and US agreed a new pact to make it easy for organisations to transfer data across the Atlantic.
    Key points of the agreement are:
    § The US will create an ombudsman to handle complaints from EU citizens about the Americans spying on their data
    § The US Office of the Director of National Intelligence will give written commitments that Europeans’ personal data will not be subject to mass surveillance
    § The EU and US will conduct an annual review to check the new system is working properly
    .
    The European Data Protection Supervisor [the EDPS] Giovanni Buttarelli [today 30 May 2016] said:
    “”Significant improvements are needed… to respect the essence of key data protection principles,” he wrote. In a statement, the EDPS said the Privacy Shield agreement needed to provide :
    i) “adequate protection against indiscriminate surveillance” and
    ii) “obligations on oversight, transparency, redress and data protection rights”
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    Source: http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-36414264
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    Many EU based observers have said that in the next few weeks another lawsuit will be launched, possibly in Dublin, possibly against Facebook to legally enforce the (currently) advisory opinion from the EDPS.
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    Many US based observers have noted the Privacy Shield agreement itself, if actually followed by Washington, gave EU citizens more civil liberties than US citizens possess.
    .
    To the working democracies of the EU it was inconceivable that Washington would show such favoritism—so the assumption has always been that unless BOTH US & EU citizens gained similar rights for Data Privacy the only long term future for Facebook & Google & Amazon “cloud” & ……… was to adopt the method used by Microsoft [in the IT industry] with its German service subsidiary being controlled by a German National to control the flow of data outside Germany.
    .
    Such a Business model has been used by Ford & General Motors for decades, was forced upon Honda & Toyota & Mercedes since the 1980s [with the insistence across the USA of “transplant car assembly plants ”] of using “a common designed at Head Office product” across the globe—but always working through National subsidiaries.

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