I’m just back from visiting two VSO friends in the town of Kitui. I had some business there (remember that course I did there a while back) and also it was a chance to relax in a lovely home. My friends have a TV set and, though their Antenna Guy was still in the process of tweaking their aerial (at the top of a high tree next to the house), it was tuned to BBC news on tuesday morning and I watched footage of what what used to be New Orleans. One of those friends has family in that city; safely evacuated like our own Natty, but equally devastated.
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Status Quo

OK Maybe it’s not status. It’s certainly not a theory.

If it were a theory, in the scientific sense, we would measure its success by its ability to predict results. A theory for predicting Kenyan behaviour was never my intention. And by presenting it here as if that’s what it was, I was bound to cause offence, especially among Kenyans who would thereby be likened to experimental creatures whose behaviour could be predicted like so many cellular automata when subjected to the superior intellect of a doctor of, what was it again? Sociology? Uh-huh. Theoretical computer science. What it was about, really, was making sense of the bewildering behaviour that I encounter here through experience and anecdote.

Still, I make no apology for it. Not even for how I presented it. Since no offence was intended, any taken might reflect a willingness on the part of the offended to interpret my words cruelly. If I were spiteful I might call that bad attitude. One thing that six years of studying subjectivity in software design has taught me is that there are many different ways of looking at everything. Here comes another one:
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