Interesting ZDNet article, which parrots one of the arguments my wife had over OLPC (One Laptop Per Child). The basic question, as stated in the article title, is whether a laptop will make that big a difference in the hands of a child with no electricity.
Reading the comments, I came across a gem:
Kids in third world countries have already been robbed of their childhood. They face the harsh reality of survival and hunger...
This had to come from someone in the West, probably someone in the U.S. The notion of someone being "robbed of their childhood" is a completely Western and completely modern notion. Having a carefree childhood is a completely modern convenience, like a refrigerator and leisure time. These kids haven't been robbed of anything - they never had a carefree childhood claim to begin with. Even in the West, up until the early 20th century, children worked, sometimes right alongside their parents. Some still do in non-Western countries.
Personally, I find the technological aspects of OLPC interesting, but the politics it spawns and the tripe dribbling from the mouth of neo-socialists who back the project is quite irritating. I'm no advocating doing nothing - doing something to help is always better - but for the love of humanity, stop deluding yourself about it.