This World, That World

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Watch my talk “Not Soy Fast: The Silent March of the multinational GM Soy industry” Tuesday at 12h45pm CET, 6h45 EST. Streaming from one of these links.

Inside we are several thousand, over the past 3 days, shuffling about the Berliner Congress Center. Some for the first time, some for the third time, and many for the 25th time. The voices are loud and plentiful, people waving a laptop in one hand, planting them in front of neighbors to show them something they’re working on. A whole line of guys in one corner all have those Madonna headsets, though none of them has said a word in the last 30 minutes. The flying object guys connect their flying objects to various sockets, an occasional test to see how the take off would look or the propellers are spinning. They don’t notice the Italian hacker walking around in his flowing robe with a bottle of grappa and a stack of plastic cups for anyone who wants to partake. He comes over to the group of people I am with, Austrian, Canadian, and American hackivists… we partake in the grappa.

It is a bizarre and lovely story, especially as I tell it thus far. Yet when I turn around and glance out the window at Berlin… when I think beyond Berlin, beyond Germany.. out there in the world.. the world shakes once again, and not in a good way. Starving migrants picked up in Malta, only to be shipped back into more suffering. Bombs fall on Gaza, outrage throughout the middle east and the world. The president of Somalia, an almost invisible figure at this point, resigns. Burma makes oil deals with China, 2008 is declared one of the top 3 worst years in history for natural disasters.

And all the while we’re in here. We’re teaching and learning and laughing and sleeping. Pushing the limits of possibility or just pushing the limits of our own bodies with lack of sleep. Wander the halls and sit in the lecture rooms, you would say it is an exciting and intelligent world out there. But out there, people are suffering, people are killing each other, the world is still broken. But we’re in here, where life is an adventure.

Goodbye day 3 of the 25th Chaos Communication Congress. I hope day 4 brings less suffering for the world and more curiosity and knowledge for us.


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