Why Does The Observer Think Taxpayers Should Build Fibreoptic?

That government has a hand in making sure that infrastructure is built seems sensible enough. They are, after all, the people who control the planning system that allows infrastructure to be built. But that government must build it? Why?

Consider, for a moment. Whether a motorway, where it goes if there is to be one, OK, why not government? But there’s nothing which says that it should be government workers wielding the spades. Or, say, government has a role in regulating the spectrum over which mobile internet signals travel.…

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Sorry Bill Gates – Poverty Is A Barrier To Excellent Health Care In Africa

We should not perhaps blame Bill Gates for this little comment for the man’s far too bright to make a mistake like this. Actually, an old friend worked for him and said it was scary, he was clearly the most intelligent man he’d ever met. So, no, Bill Gates hasn’t said that poverty is no bar to excellent health care in Africa. For quite obviously excellent health care costs substantial amounts of money, money being the definitional lack of which is poverty.…

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Avoid Namibia – Toto’s Africa To Play On Eternal Loop In Desert

This sounds like a good reason not to go wandering in a desert in Namibia. For an installation artist has decided to set up an “eternal” loop of the song broadcast to the local sand dunes. The song may or may not be to your taste once or twenty times but for all time?

There is also that little issue of quite how long eternity is and quite how short the lifespan of human made technology but still, the boom box should last long enough for the local sand fleas to get thoroughly bored:

Very, very, bored.

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Of Course Africa’s Splitting In Half – It’s Called The Great Rift Valley For A Reason You Know

It does amuse when something all should already know blows up into being a news story. That is, when olds becomes news. So it is with this reporting on the idea that Africa is splitting into two. Well, yes, obviously it is. There’s a reason we call that trench across the east of it the Great Rift Valley. A “rift” being where two bits of land are tearing themselves apart.

This is all part of the basic geologic idea that the continents float about on the lower levels of the more molten parts of the Earth.…

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Africa’s Free Trade Bloc Is An Excellent Idea

Varied African states – essentially all that are still states other than Nigeria and South Africa – has joined up into a trade bloc. Of course, it’ll matter how the details turn out but there’s great good sense in their trying to create something like a common market among themselves. For what is all too often underappreciated is that trade between places at roughly the same level of technology is just as good at increasing economic wealth as any other form of it:

The two biggest economies in Africa, Nigeria and South Africa, were wednesday conspicuously absent as 44 leaders of African countries signed a deal to create one of the world’s largest free trade blocs.

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