Thursday, December 24, 2009
When there's a will to fail, obstacles can be found.
Personal dishonesty is not needed to produce a dishonest business plan or research proposal. Wishful thinking suffices.
You are eager to defend rationality against the creationists. Fine. Are you also willing to defend it against the environmentalists?
Cynicism is a cheap substitute for sophistication. You don't actually have to learn anything.
We can't afford to waste money on crossing the ocean, Mr. Columbus, when Spanish society has so many unsolved problems. Why, most of those Jews and Moors we have converted aren't really sincere Catholics, and a lack of money to hire more inquisitors has put their questionings so far behind that many have died of natural causes before the Holy Inquisition ever got around to them.
He who claims that affairs could not be worse is very likely to make them worse.
Malthus was right. It's hard to see how the solar system could support much more than 10^28 people or the universe more than 10^50.
Young men can readily be roused to fight. If the institutions of the United States and of California didn't prevent it, the middle-aged men of Palo Alto and Menlo Park could readily get the teen agers of these cities to shoot at each other across San Francisquito Creek over the proper location of the Willow Road extension.
One can persecute with especial complacency if one regards one's victim as a representative of some great malevolent power.
If you want to do good, work on the technology, not on getting power.
The politicians have a most touching faith in technology - that it can make up for any dumb thing the politicians decide to do.
An atheist doesn't have to be someone who thinks he has a proof that there can't be a god. He only has to be someone who believes that the evidence on the God question is at a similar level to the evidence on the werewolf question.
No-one has yet built a monument so high that a bird can't fly over and shit on it.
Self-righteousness is more dangerous than smoking.
You say you couldn't live if you thought the world had no purpose. You're saying that you can't form purposes of your own - that you need someone to tell you what to do. The average child has more gumption than that.
You say the only alternative to nuclear war is world government. There is only one possibility worse than nuclear war for the survival of modern civilization, and that is world government. Civilization might recover from the damage of a nuclear war, but judging by past static empires in Egypt and China, it might never recover from world government, there being no chance of external intervention. As it is, present governments are only prevented from becoming dominated by crazy ideas that will suppress all opposition by the existence of other governments. The only way a people can be sure that their government is substandard is that it does worse than those of other countries.
The last ten percent of any reform is the most difficult to achieve. Moreover, it is often harmful.
You have to transcend your class interests. Since you belong to the class from which bureaucrats are recruited, you naturally favor making people deal with bureaucracies.
Here's a way to tell scientific intelligence from legal intelligence. Both may start from the idea that something cannot be done and think up arguments to explain why. However, it is possible that the scientist may discover a flaw in the argument that leads him to change his mind and discover a way to do it. He will be pleased. The legal thinker will merely try to patch the flaw in the argument, because once he has chosen a side, all his intelligence is devoted to finding arguments for that side.
Foolishness is rarely a matter of lack of intelligence or even lack of information.
An extreme optimist is a man who believes that humanity will probably survive even if it doesn't take his advice.
Committing genocide on behalf of an institution generates greater loyalty to it than merely getting people fired from their jobs on its behalf.
There is only one thing more harmful to society than an elected official forgetting the promises he made in order to get elected; that's when he doesn't forget them.
Inside of many liberals is a fascist struggling to get out.
The Republican majority in 1994 was a coalition of the workers and the bosses against the others.
My hobby of not attending meetings about recycling saves more energy than your hobby of recycling.
Never abandon a theory that explains something until you have a theory that explains more.
The gentlemen of the press smell blood.
Do you wish to imprison the Native Americans in a re-invented primitive culture?
Measuring all costs in terms of energy is merely a religious exercise.
Do you wish to do good for the Mexicans (Palestinians) or they merely a stick with which to beat the Americans (Jews)?
Once a person has killed other people on behalf of an ideology, he becomes rather devoted to it.
Slogans rarely convince the unconvinced. However, they do rally the troops already on your side.
Honor among thieves is the ancestor of all honor. Likewise, democracy among tyrants is the ancestor of all democracy. Think Magna Carta. -
If a person can be said to have the wrong attitude, there is no need to pay attention to his arguments.
A declining institution often experiences survival of the unfittest.
He who refuses to do arithmetic is doomed to talk nonsense.
I did blog on this at the time http://a-place-to-stand.blogspot.com/2009/09/water-on-moon.html
but I admit not since though I have discussed several other space related measures.
Much of the reason for not doing so since is that no world leader has said they intend to do anything about it. This does make a lunar base much more feasible & long term industrial use of the Moon & building O'Neill colonies very much more certain but no western leader has their eyes above the Luddism of the War Against Fire.
The other short term greater reason for ignoring it is that it was not NASA who did this but primarily India. It is a magnificent achievment for Indian science. But it does wrongfoot the media. We are used to thinking of India as a backward country of peasants we used to run. The idea that they have discovered water on the Moon when we don't even have a space programme (we are involved in ESA but that is merely a way to fund more European bureaucrats & achieves less than little) is galling. This is why such popular reaction as there has been is that we should stop giving any aid to these implicitly "uppity" folk.
In fact we, all the western countries not just Britain, have nobody to blame but ourselves that we are not where we expected to be.We handed over space development to be purely make work for bureaucrats when it is the most important activity since humans left Africa. If a $10 million X-Prize was enough to kickstart the private space programme then for the £400 million a year we spend on 20 environmental reports a year we would now have a fleet of orbital spaceplanes & for the money wasted on papershuffling we would have outposts on Pluto by now.
Even more important than water on the Moon is recent news that for £12 billion, over 15 years, we could build a Space Elevator. No part of the popular media is even interested in thinking about that. Japan is.
In 1945 Germany was like Gaza but with far less aid, houses or law. This is how the German "economic miracle" brought them up to being richer than almost other European countries. Simple free marketism.
Cosmic rays and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), both already implicated in depleting the Earth’s ozone layer, are also responsible for changes in the global climate, a University of Waterloo scientist reports in a new peer-reviewed paper.
In his paper, Qing-Bin Lu, a professor of physics and astronomy, shows how CFCs - compounds once widely used as refrigerants - and cosmic rays - energy particles originating in outer space - are mostly to blame for climate change, rather than carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. His paper, derived from observations of satellite, ground-based and balloon measurements as well as an innovative use of an established mechanism, was published online in the prestigious journal Physics Reports.
”My findings do not agree with the climate models that conventionally thought that greenhouse gases, mainly CO2, are the major culprits for the global warming seen in the late 20th century,” Lu said. “Instead, the observed data show that CFCs conspiring with cosmic rays most likely caused both the Antarctic ozone hole and global warming....”
In his research, Lu discovers that while there was global warming from 1950 to 2000, there has been global cooling since 2002. The cooling trend will continue for the next 50 years, according to his new research observations. _
The problem is how expert are “experts”. As a rather silly example BBC news last night did a feature on paganism which stated with the line “experts say there are 100,000 pagans in Britain” which may be a true & conceivably even meaningful figure but how is somebody qualified to be an expert on thje figure.
The problem with MPs not being respected is the assumption that they are experts on government. The bankers appear to less deserving of the title than thought. We recently saw a drugs advisor fired, not because his advice wasn’t factual but because it disagreed with the minister’s & possibly popular opinion. This is the root of the trouble. In many disciplines government chooses “experts” & often does so for advice which reflects their wishes rather than genuine expertise.
The CRU presents a particularly concerning development where government has taken over a real science (the CRU was founded by Hubert Lamb, father of the MP Norman & a genuine climate scientist who never believed the warming scam) & perverted it by heavily funding obedient “experts”.
There are experts to whom we do give enormous trust – every time you cross a bridge you are displaying infinitely more trust in the engineer’s ability than anyone would give to any Chancellor. I suspect that proto-sciences like economics, sociology & indeed climate science could be turned into relatively rigorous disciplines if advancement in these fields was by expertise proven by accurate results rather than by government appointing “experts” for other reasons.
15/12/9 to the Telegraph - wrong to say nuclear power is not far cheaper
Dr Wolff is wrong (letter Tues) is wrong to say nuclear power is not far cheaper than what we have now. Despite reports written by opponents & quoted to each other ad nauseam the fact is that Franc's electricity, 85% of which is nuclear, is as low as 1/4 of our price & they happily & profitably sell to all their neighbours. Anyone can say A costs less than B but finding B on sale at a lower price trumps all the spin.
French nuclear is costed at 1.7P a unit & that is using last generation's equipment. If it were done here without unnecesarily expensive regulation a new generation of plants need not be in any way more expensive.
14/12 Herald - no actual evidence whatsoever for catastrophic global warming
Your lead letter today from Dr Richard Dixon (letters Monday) of WWF give a lengthy case for increasing the £500 million a day the world currently spends on the Kyoto process.
However the fact is that there is no actual evidence whatsoever for catastrophic global warming (computers models are a dubious theory not evidence). Moreover we now see concrete evidence of "juggling the figures" to "hide the decline" in temperature by the government funded CRU (£13.7 million to Professor Jones alone. Government here & abroad has poured 10s of billions into "research" trying to justify the trillions cost of extra regulations & taxes on us to stop nature. They have spent at least as much on advertising, including cartoons of crying bunny rabbits to promote this false fear hysteria.
Readers may also be interested to know that WWF also receives substantial amounts of money from government.
In light of the claims there is a "scientific consensus" on this despite 10s of thousands of real scientists signing petitions against this I have repeatedly asked politicians & lobbyists to name 2 real scientists, not funded by government or lobbyists, who say we are suffering catastrophic warming & are not funded by government or lobbyists but without success. Perhaps Dr Dixon can help?
12/12 Telegraph - is Sir Brian Hoskins actually saying he sees catastrophic warming?
Though it gives a fearsome impression I am not sure whether Sir Brian Hoskins is actually saying whether he sees catastrophic global warming or not. He says he believes the world is warming but, even if it were true & the net cooling over recent years were not to count, this is of little effect unless we are agreed on how much CO2 is warming the planet. Best calculations put it at about an extra 0.3 C if CO2 doubles. Since, as recent Greenland ice core measurements have also confirmed, the Medieval warming was a full degree warmer than currently that is hardly grounds for panic. Sir Brian does mention that a 4 degree warming would mean 30% more rainfall but doesn't say if he is predicting this, let alone if there is any evidence to do so. Incidentally 4 C warmer is what we had during the Climate Optimum of 9,000-5,000 BC & that increased rainfall may explain why hippopotamuses could live in the middle of what is now the Sahara. It is questionable how bad that was. He, quite properly, says recent floods are not linked to climate change even though the BBC, in years of flooding, have said it is, while in the year of drought said climate change would cause drought.
His conclusion "The impacts of climate change go far wider than coral reefs, however important they are" is probably not something the most sceptical could disagree with but surely, before we are asked to make war on fire to the extent of destroying anything up to 80% of our power generating & therefore economic capacity we ought to be very sure indeed that it is to stop something more certain & serious than that. For catastrophic warming to be true surely we should have credible promises of something catastrophic.
7/12 Scotsman - Simply untrue that the emails only leaked a week ago
John Webster (letter Monday) says that the fact that the news of the leaked "climategate" emails & orther documentation only came out a week before the Copenhagen meeting proves they must be disinformation. In fact I first blogged on it on 21st november when it was starting to become massive news on the blogsphere. This gave Professor Jones & co ample time to cry fake & the best they have done is saying that using a "trick to hide the decline" of global temperature merely meant he had done something clever. In fact the news has been around long enough for investigators to have shown there was nothing particularly clever or spohisticated in their data use, merely fraudulent. If the British media have taken a very long time to manage even the minimal reporting this has received, bearing in mind that in proving catastrophic global warming a sham it is as important as all the alarmist stories produced over the years put together, this failure can hardly be blamed on the sceptics.
28/11 Everybody - I swear I pulled every trick out of my sleeve trying to milk something
For years we have been told that there was a "consensus" on global warming. We see from the leaked email scandal that "climate scientists" have conspired to prevent publication of sceptical research, even to getting editors fired to pervert the "peer review" system. This is not how real science is done. It has also been known that the largest single expression of scientific opinion, the widely unreported petition of over 31,000 scientists, says that not only is there no catastrophic warming but that increasing CO2 is BENEFICIAL, because CO2 helps crops grow. It has long been obvious that a disproportionate number of scientists putting their heads above the parapet against warming were emeritus (retired) professors which raises questions answered by Dr Joanne Simpson (1st female President of the American Meteorological Society & has one of NASA's Cray supercomputers named after her) when she said on retiral “Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receive any funding, I can speak quite frankly" & proceeded to demolish the alarmist case.
I have asked on a number of alarmist websites if it is possible to name 2 scientists not paid, directly or indirectly, by government or the likes of Greenpeace who actually say that catastrophic warming is real. So far none of them have produced even a single name so I appeal through your pages to see if anybody can. It is time to have an open & public enquiry, as with Iraq, taking evidence under oath to investigate all aspects of this campaign.
18/11 Herald - "As a young graduate engineer"
Duncan McLaren Chief executive of Friends of the Earth showed his credentials to claim impartiality in his opposition to nuclear power by saying "As a young graduate engineer, I believed in the technology" (letter 11th Nov). According to his entry on the FoE website he got an MBA in Business Administration in 2002 & became Chief Executive, Friends of the Earth Scotland in May 2003 http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/duncan-mclaren/4/808/882 . Unless he completed that engineering degree in a few months rather than years, which would be a spectacular achievement it seems the "environmentalist" movement has, yet again, made personal statements apparently irreconcilable with the facts in the same way they continuously make scientific & numerical claims that cannot be reconciled with truth in these areas.
Indeed in the same letter McLaren asserts that, even after we lose half our electricity capacity over the next few years we will still run no risk of blackouts & even be able to export some of the little remaining. There seems to be no way to reconcile this claim with the rules of arithmetic.
18/11 Times - MP's duty to push warming alarmism?
Bob Ward signs himself as being an employee of a government funded climate alarmist organisation. By doing so he entirely disproves his own thesis that "newspapers and broadcasters give disproportionately wide coverage to so-called “sceptics” who peddle inaccurate and misleading information." In fact coverage is overwhelmingly given to alarmists. Even the BBC, legally required to show balance, admits (Newsnight editor) that they deliberately do not show "due scepticism & balance" about catastrophic global warming scares. A balanced report would at least give equal mention to the fact that the globe is now cooling. As regards inaccurate & misleading information may I point him to the video of the alarmist guru Al Gore claiming that the Earth's temperature 2 km down is "millions of degrees" (it is actually well under 100 C).
In his letter Mr Ward makes no attempt to produce any evidence that such catastrophic warming is on the horizon merely asserting it. Nor did this government funded PR flack attempt to do so when he recently lectured Douglas Carswell MP on his blog that it was his duty to support warming alarmism.
While there may be a consensus among politicians & PR people that we are suffering catastrophic warming that is not the case among scientists. Indeed there is barely a scientist, not funded by government who claims it. On the other hand Nobel prizewinning scientist Kary Mullis says "“Global warmers predict that global warming is coming, and our emissions are to blame. They do that to keep us worried about our role in the whole thing. If we aren't worried and guilty, we might not pay their salaries. It's that simple” so perhaps less unanimity than claimed.
(Douglas Carswell subsequently pointed oput how, a few days later after the email leak, Bob Ward made a statement about how we should all be sceptical, though not to sceptical)
17/11 Herald - Lets answer "indefensible"
The Israeli operation in Gaza was embarked on purely because Hamas refused to stop firing rockets at civilian settlements. This was not war because they were aiming only to kill civilians because of their race, which, as both international law & history makes clear, is genocide. Yet Paul Scott says that for Israel to move was "indefensible." At the very least it is incumbent on anybody saying so to explain exactly what they propose Israel could have done to stop genocidal attacks on its own civilians but I know of no critic who has done so. As for "indefensible" - let Colonel Richard Kemp, former British commander in Afghanistan who may know a thing or 2 about war, make the defence:
Operation Cast Lead, the Israeli Defense Forces did more to safeguard the
rights of civilians in a combat zone than any other army in the history of
Israel did so while facing an enemy that deliberately positioned its
military capability behind the human shield of the civilian population.
...The IDF faces a challenge that we British do not have to face to the same
extent. It is the automatic, Pavlovian presumption by many in the
international media, and international human rights groups, that the IDF are
in the wrong, that they are abusing human rights.
The truth is that the IDF took extraordinary measures to give Gaza civilians
notice of targeted areas, dropping over 2 million leaflets, and making over
100,000 phone calls. Many missions that could have taken out Hamas military
capability were aborted to prevent civilian casualties. During the conflict,
the IDF allowed huge amounts of humanitarian aid into Gaza. To deliver aid
virtually into your enemy's hands is, to the military tactician, normally
quite unthinkable. But the IDF took on those risks.
...More than anything, the civilian casualties were a consequence of Hamas's
way of fighting. Hamas deliberately tried to sacrifice their own civilians."
Compare & contrast the words of a real soldier with those of the political appointees of the UN. Compare & contrast also the complaints of British politicians of Israeli self defence with their enthusiastic involvement in a war waged overwhelmingly against civilians in Yugoslavia. That war was carried out mainly by bombing Yugoslav cities (80% of the casualties being civilians) & when NATO occupied Kosovo we enrolled the KLA, the only genocidal organisation in that province, as "police" & sent them out to ethnically cleanse, engage in massacres (e.g. the murder of at least 210 unarmed civilians outside our military HQ in Dragodan), ethnically cleanse 350,000, kidnap schoolgirls to sell to brothels & kidnap & dissect, while still alive, at least 1,300 civilians to sell as organs to our hospitals. That last, alone is more people than died in Gaza & should have had far more coverage.
Israel could, if it were so minded, ethnically cleanse the west bank as we cleansed Kosovo (& earlier Krajina). Let us be glad that under infinitely worse provocation, no Israeli politician has shown themselves 1,000th as uncivilised as almost all of ours have done.
16/11 Everybody - party has reported a major Nazi style atrocity
It is good to see that one political party has, at last, reported on its website news of a major Nazi style atrocity in Europe which has been on the record for a year & a half. That is when Carla del Ponte, the Chief Prosecutor of the Yugoslav war crime tribunal, that she had known for 8 years that NATO police, formerly the KLA, had been involved in kidnapping Serbs & Gypsies & cutting them up, while still alive, to steal their body organs for European hospitals. NATO, by grabbing Kosovo & earlier Croatia & Bosnia from Yugoslavia were following in Hitler's footsteps. The decision to effectively censor mention of this obscenity, at least comparable in evil though not numbers, to Auschwitz, by our major politicians & by the BBC, ITN & major newspapers has been a disgusting action by politicians who have thereby shown themselves to be genocide deniers working in Hitler's cause.
The BNP, as the party who finally mentioned this on their website, are to be congratulated as the only major party that can claim not to have censored to promote genocide in the Nazi cause.
14/11 Times - ministry's figures do not add up
Your report of 13th Nov shows the Ministry of Defence claiming "There are currently 85,730 civil servants .. the majority earned less than £20,000 a year, and the bonus (£287 million) accounted for less than 3 per cent of the staffing bill." Taking that £20,000 as the average the entire staffing bill would be £1.7 billion, 3% of which is £51 million. The nicest thing one can say is that the ministry's figures do not add up.
13/11 - Everybody - Subject: vote for the fascists at Springburn
The vote for the fascists at the Springburn by-election was only to be expected. It has long been said that this was the sort of loyal Labour constituency where you could put up a donkey in their rosette & it would win & once again this has been proven. The fact is that the Labour. Conservative, SNP & LibDem parties are essentially one group imposing fascism not through 1 leader but an amorphous political classwith similar attribute to the old Soviet "nomenklatura".. When Mussolini came to power he changed the system to give an automatic majority to the largest party even though it had only minority support & with the SNP & LDs dissenting, our political class supports a similarly corrupt electoral system here - they know that the only thing that gets people voting for them is that an anlternative vote is "wasted". These parties are also united in their commitment to an undemocratic empire controlling Europe; in their contempt for the electors, cynically making manifesto or "cast iron" promises of our right to a democratic referendum on the country's future & then cynically breaking them; in their enthusiasm for war crimes, mass murder, genocide, ethnic cleansing, the sexual enslavement of children & the dissection of Serbian "Untermensch" while still alive, for their body parts, all to support (ex-)Nazis) (to be fair the SNP were divided on these atrocities); this nomenklatura are united in spending £92 billion of our money on jobs for the boys quangos which cause immense economic destruction, though all of them promise a "bonfire of the quangos" & all of them break the promise after the election; they are unanimously committed to destroying half our economy, but subsidising their friends, in the name of "fighting global warming" when they know this is a lie designed merely to scare us & the globe is cooling; they all know how to end recession, by stopping their own parasitism which amounts to 75% of our entire economic potential; they are all committed to deepening the recession by preventing "continuous economic growth" (though only the Greens are honest enough to say so).
However this under the surface fascist alliance can depend on the total, loyalty of the media, not merely the directly state owned BBC with their enthusiasm for "lynchings" of politicians outside the nomenklatura. It is therefore unsurprising that the fascists took the first 3 places in the Springburn election though gratifying that their 4th segment, the "Liberal Democrats" (a party who have made it a condition of membership that one on no account support free market liberalism but are required to support war crimes & genocide) placed 6th. Such a party is clearly less entitled to the name "liberal" than Hitler was entitled to call his "Socialist Workers." Nonetheless the abysmal turnout proves that though they may be able to smear the opposition they can, under no circumstances, inspire the trust of the people.
11/11 Scotsman - a law to destroy 42% of our CO2 emitting energy
Friends of the Earth's assertion that blackouts will never happen because an "independent energy consultant" says so (letter Weds) should be taken no more seriously than the flattery by King Canute's advisors that the tide wasn't coming in. Their expert, Garrard Hassan advertises himself as the "worlds leading renewable energy consultant," a position he would clearly be unlikely to retain if he were to be independent enough to admit that the whole "alternative" energy business is a scam whose practitioners make far more money from subsidy, paid by the taxpayer, than from actually producing power. In fact I suggest he is totally dependent on this "industry."
The fact is that 1/3rd of our electricity comes from nuclear power & another 6th from coal power which will close in 2015 when new EU emission controls come in. The Scottish Parliament has made this worse by voting, unanimously, for a law to destroy 42% of our CO2 emitting energy over the next 11 years on the grounds that this will cut the world's CO2 release by less than one ten thousandth. This would have no remotely measurable effect on global temperature even if the globe were not in fact cooling. However such is the relationship between electricity & national wealth that the deliberate destruction of, at an absolute minimum, half our power production will destroy half of our national wealth.
I remember seeing the then leader of the Green Party publicly explaining his party had gone from "small is beautiful" to supporting a massive EU bureaucracy because they had decided that this bureaucracy was the only thing that would stop the "continuous economic growth" we were allegedly suffering from. While one may appreciate the dedication that has brought them the success of the current (& continuing) recession one need not support this aim. The same Luddite principles, combined with an anti-environmentalist desire to disfigure the countryside with pylons & windmills are clearly the driving force behind the self styled "Friends of the Earth."
4/11 Everybody - Not just whether we want a referendum but whether we want lied to
We have what he has described as a "cast iron promise" from David Cameron that we will actually get a chance to say, through a referendum, whether we want to be under the Lisbon Treaty. That goes with the manifesto promises of a referendum from the Labour & LibDem parties at the last election. There can be no more important promise from any political leader than an unequivocal promise, at election time, to maintain Britain's constitution & democratic freedom.
Now all of them have cynically broken their most solemn promise. There is not even the excuse George Bush Snr had when he broke his word on "no new taxes" - that he needed the money - for which the American electors, correctly, never forgave him. Compared to this the expenses row is nothing - that was merely money. It is now impossible for any member of any of our major parties ever to say that any promise they make, manifesto promises or just the ordinary sort, can ever be trusted at all. It is not even a matter of whether one wants a vote in the country's future but of whether one wants to be lied to. It is clearly impossible for anybody with any respect for democracy, or even any self respect, to vote for any of these parties.
30/10 Scotsman - Government takes up 80% of the economy
The old "socialist"nonsence is trotted out again by David Fiddimore when he says the voter and the private sector have opposed interests that only the state can hold together. This is the same thing that Mussolini said when he used this argument to support an overbearing state & it is even more wrong now than then. The private sector makes up less than half of Britain's spending (40% of Scotland's) yet provides all the wealth. Indeed the state. through regulation, actually has a net negative effect on wealth creation whether through the quadrupling of our electricity, housing & nursery school costs or the 5% of GNP the EU admits its regulations destroy. The best estimate is that the amount of wealth destroyed by regulation is equal to everything that remains. Thus our non-governmental economy is 20% of what it could be - no wonder we have a recession. It would obviously be in the interest of us voters/consumers to have a more productive private sector & a less parasitic state sector.
Wealth creation is clearly in the interests of those of us who do not wish poverty, which I suggest includes almost all of the voters. Their interest, like the interest of the private sector is not for an overbearing nanny state reducing freedom & increasing poverty. Both voters & the private sector have a joint interest in reducing the overwhelming degree of parasitism the government imposes on both of us. More freedom, more wealth & more progress, economic & otherwise, is the true interest of everybody - except those in charge.
24/1 Everybody - deliberate plan to "open up the UK to mass migration"
A senior Labour advisor has let the cat out of the bag about recent immigration. Andrew Neather, a former adviser to Tony Blair, Jack Straw and David Blunkett has said Labour's relaxation of controls was a deliberate plan to "open up the UK to mass migration" but that ministers were reluctant to discuss such a move deliberately intended "to rub the Right's nose in diversity" publicly for fear it would alienate its "core working class vote".
Since we have just seen the BBC's Question Time wholly devoted to attacking Nick Griffin over his past (while ignoring the colourful opinions of the youthfall Jack Straw when he was a communist backed NUS leader) may we now expect next week's QT to be devoted to a lynching of the Labour representative for that dishonest & destructive fraud against the people? Or will it turn out that the BBC decide such things are not what their viewers would want to know about?
18/11 Scotsman - SNP aim for pork barrelling
The SNP consider it right, even sensible, to try to persuade people to vote for them on the grounds that if we have a hung Westminster Parliament they will be able to get vast amounts of pork barrelling money for Scotland. Since virtually all the seats they aim at are from non-Tory parties they can only hope for a hung Parliament if they think that without their intervention the Conservatives are not heading for a majority. The opposite side of that is that they are inviting a Conservative government which does not need their help (something the vast majority of observers expect) to take away all the extra money we already get as a "Union dividend" & invite them to girn as much as they want. Scotland out of the union may not look like an option with much downside to Westminster Conservatives.
12/10 Scotsman - Space has been a massive net profit to humanity
The imprisonment of a man for letting a child smoke is a perversion of the law. The legal charge was of "exposing a child in a manner likely to cause suffering or injury to health." Nobody disputes that smoking 40 a day for 40 years produces as strong possibility, though not more than that, of killing. Even then the risk drops dramatically if the smoking stops.
I challenge anybody involved in the case to produce any evidence that the kid, who was clearly perfectly happy since she was asking for more, has suffered measurable "suffering or injury to health." I also challenge them to explain why they don't believe locking him up won't cause emotional harm to the girl. If they can't then perhaps we should hear why any prosecution witness who said it would hasn't committed perjury.
Demonisation (or "denormalisation" as the PC brigade call it) of any group in society is not something governments in free societies exist to do. Perverting the existing law to make an example of one person to frighten everybody is disgusting. Anybody who believes in individual freedom must oppose this.
Labels: Unpublished letters
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
DAILY RECORD LETTER OF THE DAY - FORTH CROSSING?
Sent 19th Dec - grossly inflated prices of our public projects is scandalous
It has just been announced that the people of Hong Kong & Guandong provinces are to build a new connecting bridge. The price is £6.3 billion & the central government is sharing in the cost. How different from Scotland where we cannot raise £3 billion for a new Forth Bridge. How different from Scotland also that the Chinese are getting a 50 km bridge for that price whereas for half that we get one just over 1 km long. Another comparison would be with Norway where they have built 750 km of tunnels at about £7 million per km whereas the "official" Scottish price for a Forth Tunnel is £4.3 billion. The grossly inflated prices of our public projects is scandalous but no MSP is even willing to try to explain it.
(Ref Chinese bridge http://nextbigfuture.com/2009/12/world-longest-sea-bridge-starts.htmlFoI on how tunnel price was made up http://a-place-to-stand.blogspot.com/2007/10/forth-tunnel-price-fakery.html )
emailed 15th Dec - ICTY refuses to produce Srebrenica DNA evidence
As part of the "trial" of Radovan Karadzic evidence has been released about the bodies allegedly part of the "8,000 man Srebrenica massacre." There are incongruities. While there are 3568 autopsies some of these are of just a few bones. Between them they have only 1919 left femurs & 1923 right ones which suggests under 2,000 actual bodies. 477 of these have shrapnel wounds - evidence of combat death.
However the real problem is what the ICTY have not made available. It is undenied. though also largely unreported, that our Moslem Nazi allies in Srebrenica murdered at least 3,870 men, women & children in surrounding villages, though mainly women & children because the men were in the army. NATO commander General Morillon, among others, testified about this in the Milosevic "trial". This is not counted as genocide for unexplained reasons. Since 1995 DNA technology has improved enormously & it is now possible to determine ethnicity with considerable accuracy. Since none of the villager's bodies have, officially, been found it is likely that some & possible that all of these are Serbs. This is enhanced by the fact that contemporary reports said there were only 7,500 Srebrenica Moslem forces & that their leader, when he announced the "massacre" claimed they had all been killed but it was subsequently proven that 7,000 of them had got through the lines.
The refusal of the ICTY to make the DNA available to the defence is, at the very least, deeply suspicious. It is one thing for the establishment to refuse to make data available to scientific researchers, in a matter of science, as we have seen with alleged catastrophic global warming. It is far worse to refuse to make evidence available to the defence in an alleged "criminal trial."
This evidence is certainly consistent with Serbian claims that the "Srebrenica massacre" was a deliberate propaganda fraud used by NATO politicians to persuade us to support their military action in favour of Moslem & Croatians, many of whose leaders were openly genocidal & former members of another multinational military organisation - the SS. The "court" must make all the evidence available if justice is even to be attempted.
( Refs - Dr Simic's findings http://de-construct.net/?p=9034&cpage=1#comment-5205Improvements in DNA measurement & relevance here http://a-place-to-stand.blogspot.com/2008/03/science-of-dna-identification-is.html )
Sent 6th Dec - Climategate "independent" investigator was responsible for Scottish Parliament cost
University of East Anglia has appointed Sir Alasdair Muir Russell to chair its "independent" inquiry into whether the leaked emails & other information showing the people collating the data allegedly showing worldwide global warming have been in any way inaccurate. This is extremely embarrassing for the government ministers & civil servants who have thrown grants at anybody pushing the catastrophic warming theory & denied them to sceptics. Since the emails contain remarks like "hid the decline" in global temperature & "I swear I pulled every trick out of my sleeve trying to milk something out of that... I don't think it'd be productive to try and juggle the chronology statistics any more than I already have" & in scientific terms even more damagingly they destroyed their original data on which the entire theory is based making it impossible for other researchers to check if it is valid. This ability to check, known as falsifiability is about the most basic rule of science - an uncheckable claim simply isn't science.
In the circumstances Sir Alasdair would seem to have a very simple task, even though he isn't a scientist. He is a career civil servant who has enjoyed the full confidence of government ministers when he was Permanent secretary at the Scottish Office. Indeed this level of confidence does not seem to have been affected when, according to Wikipedia "Scottish Parliament Building and was criticised by Lord Fraser of Carmyllie's enquiry for failing to keep the politicians informed that the expenditure was far in excess of the budget". That report let the politicians off extremely lightly effectively finding that nobody had done anything seriously wrong in blowing £430 million of our money & his career among the "great & good" does not seem to have suffered.
What is actually required over this scandal is a genuinely independent inquiry, sitting in public, taking evidence under oath & chaired by a prominent & respected scientist who has not been part, on either side, of the warming debate, or employed by government ministers & civil servants? I would suggest one of the not inconsiderable number of retired British Nobel Prize winners. If, as appears, alleged catastrophic global warming is wholly unproven & at least partly fraudulent it is a scandal which has cost us not hundreds of millions but hundreds of billions. Anything less than a real inquiry into what is becoming known worldwide as "climategate" will be seen as a cover up & deserve to be.
(Refs quotes http://a-place-to-stand.blogspot.com/2009/11/warming-alarmists-deliberate-fraud.html
Wikipedia entry http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muir_RussellAppointment http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1233562/Emails-rocked-climate-change-campaign-leaked-Siberian-closed-city-university-built-KGB.html
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
This is for those who accused me of being "too right wing" to be a member of the LibDims or similar on other occasions (& maybe even to reassure myself a little that they were wrong). Britain's communist newspaper has published this letter from me. I have had letters there before & have praised them as being much more truly liberal than our mainstream media. However they were about our genocide in Yugoslavia & they published a letter calling for support of X-Prizes.
This one is about the way forward for socialism. Perhaps the socialism I envisage would be rather similar to the liberal or even conservative one, at least to the extent that whatever the name it should involve freedom, equal treatment under the law, a rising standard of living for all & a philosophical belief in human scientific progress. There are members of all these movements who support those & members of all these movements who are deeply opposed to them though they would usually genuflect towards freedom as they try to slip the shackles on.
If socialism is considered to mean that society should be run for the optimum benefit of all then few would disagree with that (something which was not the case throughout most of written history). If it is a system of centralised dictatorial, or bureaucratic control of everything few would support it. Over the last century, partly under the influence of the USSR, it has moved in the latter direction. It is time for a genuine intellectual reconstruction of a progressive non-centralised ideal which accepts that the negative feedback provided by the market (customer choice leading to profits or bankruptcy) provide a vital role & that self seeking politicians largely don't.
I disagree with the letter of Reg Hennessey letter (Friday) about socialism & climate change.Incidentally I wrote this as 3 paragraphs which they paper enhanced by dividing into 8 - on a previous occasion I was told that the reason a letter hadn't been published was because it was longer than 2 paragraphs so I have tended to shorten where possible. It may not reach a massive audience but I am extremely proud of this letter.
We now know for certain that the global warming story relies on a few scientists, very heavily funded by government (£13.7 million in Professor Jones' case), massive government propaganda & the entire mainstream media propagandising in every possible way. What sort of radical socialism is that?
There is no political philosopher, not even Adam Smith, who was as supportive of technological progress as Marx.
His entire thesis is was based on technological progress improving methods of manufacturing & thus the class base of society.
The historical Luddites, while they were an opposition group had nothing in common with socialists. Indeed they were largely middle class workers seeing their skills replaced by machinery run by lower class ones which, understandably, they did not like. Pretty much the same applies today - look at the backgrounds of the Plane Stupid people, or Monbiot, let alone Goldsmith or Gore.
It is understandable that the left, besieged in recent years, has been happy to welcome the Luddites as fellow travellers & even be co-opted into big government scare stories but it cannot be consistent with any intellectual attempt to build a modern socialism & an intellectual foundation is vital.
If capitalism has been able to corner the market in promising to create wealth & socialists only promise to make us enjoy poverty I know which is going to have the greater attraction.
An interesting article by Peter Oborne in the Daily Mail, generally regarded as the political journalist's political journalist on why the Conservatives aren't doing better in the polls.His answer includes
So the most important question in British politics this Christmas is this: why is David Cameron not doing a lot better?However the Tories do have a very effective "attack dog" on their back benches. David Davis of whom it was said before John Reid left politics
One answer lies in the character of his opponent, Gordon Brown.
Although the Prime Minister is a spectacularly poor premier, he has an admirable inner resilience.
...more pressing, reason for Cameron's failure to secure an unassailable lead over Labour is down to the weakness of his frontbench team.
Back in 1996, Tony Blair led a very powerful campaigning organisation.
Orchestrated by Alastair Campbell and Peter Mandelson, it specialised in the vicious and unpleasant tactic of personal attacks on its enemies.
Huge resources were employed in trying to annihilate John Major and his government.
Such barbarous and unscrupulous politics is alien to David Cameron's nature and it is to his credit that he has not sought to emulate New Labour's unsavoury tactics.
As a result, however, Cameron has repeatedly failed to take advantage of Gordon Brown's unpopularity.
Cameron has also made one key error of judgment.
Until six months ago, the Tories possessed one formidable and courageous attack dog in the shape of his frontbench spokesman Chris Grayling. But Cameron foolishly promoted him to be Shadow Home Secretary.
Since then, Grayling has struggled to make an impact in his new brief, while the Tories have lost the services of their only seasoned rottweiler when it comes to attacks on Labour.
There's nothing quite like seeing David Davis in action as he scents blood. He'll be interviewed on Newsnight tonight following Charles Clarke's barnstorming interview in which he sticks the odd knife or two into Dr Reid's back. Having already secured the scalps of one Immigration Minister and Two Home Secretaries, you wouldn't bet against him getting a third, would you? Other members of the Shadow Cabinet may care to watch how it's done.It is undeniable that Davis was indeed extremely effective in exactly the role Oborne says is needed. He also has the unearned inherited privilege of being raised on a council estate in South London & having a grammar school education. It may or may not be an unfair criticism of Cameron & his friends that they are "toffs" but bringing Davis back would certainly help dehorse what appears to be Labour's main campaign issue.
Of course Davis was Cameron's opponent when running for the leadership & he did let him go when Davis proved unruly (and correct, which may or may not mitigate) over continuing to fight ID cards. He may not be entirely happy about bringing him back but a real leader should do what is in the general interest ahead of any unbecoming personal feelings. My impression is also that Davis is an honourable man (no lesser person would have put his career on the line over ID cards as he did) & that if he accepts a front bench post he will carry it out with personal loyalty, even where they disagree on policy. If that assessment is correct and obviously I know no more than anybody else, then that is a rare commodity in politics that should be cherished.
I would also like to make a case for bringing John Redwood onto the front bench, preferably, as I have suggested before, as Minister for Cutting Things which he did so successfully as Welsh Secretary. Redwood, occasionally known as "Mr Spock" has, by common consent, probably the best brain in Parliament. The LibDems have gained considerable mileage from Vince Cable getting a number of economic suggestions right ahead of the government but in virtually all of these Redwood got them righter & earlier. The position I have suggested would allow him to face Cable & to force Cable to defend some very silly LibDem policies like windmillery which he must know to be disastrous to the country.
Overall I stand by my opinion that Gordon Brown is the best man in the Cabinet, which is not to say that he is very good, but that the rest are, except for Mandy, truly awful. The range of talent in the Conservative party is much greater.
At the moment the Conservatives are ahead in the polls but not by that much. Electoral Calculus today predicts a fair majority of 52 but any slippage from that could produce a hung Parliament. I am a strong supporter of proportional representation* but such a Parliament now, when a new government is going to have to make drastic cuts to stave off bankruptcy & would be wise to take Machiavelli's advice & inflict them all at once, would be unlikely to stand. The LibDems would be saintly not to demand their own pork barreling & put the blame on the Tories. So Cameron needs a secure majority he cannot coast. Assuming even a slight improvement of 2% from a return of the non-toff attack dog Davis gives the Conservatives a nominal majority of 112 seats which would allow them to confidently do what is needed.
* If Britain had a democratic PR system, as I wish we did, it seems likely that the "protest" votes would go at least as much to UKIP as to the LibDems. I think the Conservatives should support such a reform, not simply out of niceness or even because shrinking Labour constituencies and a smaller turnout in Labour constituencies, meaning they get more MPs under FPTP, but because the rise of UKIP would be in their interest. Any Parliamentary system requires opposition parties & often they are the only ones who can discuss alternative policies. It would be in their long term health if there were a traditional liberal free market opposition party as well as the statist Labour & "LibDem" parties. I also suspect the Labour party would not hang together after both severe electoral defeat & the ending of the electoral system that puts British politics in an electoral straitjacket.
Labels: British politics
Monday, December 21, 2009
You have been called to positions of responsibility at this critical time. The eyes of the world are upon you and it is no understatement to say that, with your signatures, you can write our future ...& previously that "Climate change should be seen as the greatest challenge to face man and treated as a much bigger priority in the United Kingdom."
One final thought ... As our planet's life-support system begins to fail and our very survival as a species is brought into question, remember that our children and grandchildren will ask not what our generation said, but what it did. Let us give an answer, then, of which we can be proud.
So in doing nothing the summit has now allowed the global eco-system to fail, ensured catastrophic warming & we are all now doomed.
I think Charles' assessment is wrong. This on the other hand, is right.
James Delingport says
we won the battle, but at Copenhagen we just lost the war
...But if we think the events of the last fortnight marked a triumph for commonsense over hair shirt green lunacy, we are sadly deluding ourselves. Copenhagen was never about winning or losing a scientific argument. And it wasn’t, as even green campaigners have begun belatedly to realise, about “saving” the environment either....it was a trough-fest at which all the world’s greediest pigs gathered to gobble up as much of your money and my money as they possibly could, under the righteous-sounding pretence that they were saving the planet.
This nauseating piggery took two forms. First were the Third World kleptocracies – led by the likes of Hugo Chavez and Robert Mugabe – using “Global Warming” as an excuse to extort guilt-money from the Western nations.
Second, and much more dangerous, were the First World Corporatists who stand to make trillions of dollars using the Enron economics of carbon trading. Never mind all the talk of President Obama’s trifling $100 billion pledge. This is very small beer compared with the truly eye-watering sums that will be ransacked from our economies and our wallets over the next decades in the name of “carbon emissions reduction.”
Richard North has spotted this, even if virtually nobody else has. The key point, he notes, is the Copenhagen negotiators’ little-publicised decision to save the Kyoto Protocol. This matters because it was at Kyoto that the mechanisms for establishing a global carbon market were established. Carbon trading could not possibly exist without some form of agreement between all the world’s governments on emissions: the market would simply collapse. By keeping Kyoto alive, the sinister troughers of global corporatism have also kept their cash cow alive.
As North says
This is nothing to do with the headline billions and all the rest. Nope, the deal is that the Kyoto Protocol is saved – which is what all the fuss was really about. That safeguards the carbon market and opens the way for it to expand to the $2-trillion level by the year 2020. Against that, even €100 billion is chump-change – you can buy countries with that sort of money.
The third view derived from the New York Post is that the eco-bureaucracy did indeed fail. Indeed that what we have seen is not merely the EU being dealt out of the game by a US-China deal supported by India, as our media has reported it but a China-India-Brazil deal to which the US was allowed to append its signature.
Obama and his team were prepared to give up hope for a broad deal after hearing that leaders of India, Brazil and other key nations -- along with much of the entire Chinese delegation -- had already left for the airport.By signing up to this Obama had got a piece of paper that allowed him to hurry home before the Washington blizzards stopped the world's saviour from catastrophic warming from landing.
But that wasn't the case.
Instead, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao insultingly skipped a high-level meeting in the morning, leaving Obama and other world leaders negotiating with a lower-level government official.
Wen later attend a meeting with President Lula de Silva of Brazil as well as the leaders of India and South Africa. Obama decided he wanted to go, and was forced to barge into the meeting.
"Mr. Premier, are you ready to see me? Are you ready?" the exasperated Obama inquired loudly from the conference-room door, in front of the press and other world leaders who had already gathered.
"We can't get into the room to look at it," explained one of the advance officials. "They're all having a meeting."
There wasn't even a seat for Obama.
"The president walks in and by the time I finally push through I hear the president say, 'There aren't any seats,' " explained one of the officials. "And the president says, 'No, no, don't worry, I'm going to go sit by my friend Lula,' and says, 'Hey, Lula,' " the advance official said.
But what this means is that we have a "new world order" of the world's fastest growing countries, none of which were in the old G7/8 to whom the EU is irrelevant & the US only on sufferance.
So which of the 3 interpretations is right. Well if you accept catastrophic warming is a real problem then all 3. If you don't & I don't, then the last 2, though diametrically opposed, are both right. The countries committed to & losing from carbon trading (ie the developed ones excluding Russia whose post USSR collapse still means they are sellers of the credits)(ie the EU & Japan) have continued to saddle ourselves with this $ trillion fraud & that the world has indeed moved on.
So long as the EU states continue to saddle ourselves our economic decline will conninue & thus so will our political decline. Scotland, with our Parliament's unanimous & clinically insane decision to cut off half our electricty production in the next 11 (days from 10) years, gloriously in the lead in the race over the precipice..
Sunday, December 20, 2009
George Monbiot was fairly early, among alarmists, to say that the CRU had got it wrong & that prof Jones had to go. This got him some plaudits for having the guts to admit it but the alternative view that I hold is that it was simply an attempt at damage limitation. That he saw the CRU was bang to rights & had to be treated as merely a part of the warming scam, rather than the centre where all the world's data was collated & proved, allegedly, to show fast warming.
The response of the greens and most of the scientists I know is profoundly ironic, as we spend so much of our time confronting other people's denial. Pretending that this isn't a real crisis isn't going to make it go away. Nor is an attempt to justify the emails with technicalities. We'll be able to get past this only by grasping reality, apologising where appropriate and demonstrating that it cannot happen again.My reason for thinking Monbiot is not sincere but merely being tactical this time is that he has behaved dishonestly & deliberately so on another instance in which he clearly thought, because it was not so high profile, he could get away with it.
When Martin Durkin's "Great Global Warming Swindle" came out Monbiot was in the Guardian several times to say why it should not be broadcast or why, after it had been, it should be ignored. Much of his argument consisted of ad hominum attacks on the programme's director Martin Durkin. This consisted of pointing out that on a number of previous occasions Durkin had produced programmes which he disagreed with & which, such is the way of the British establishment, had been criticised by the broadcasting standards authority. All of them were anti-Luddite & all were, at the very least, not shown to be factually incorrect in any serious way but one of his criticisms sticks out.
None of this, or subsequent distortions, stopped the channel from continuing to pay Durkin to pursue what looks like a personal crusade against science. In 1998, he hired a research biochemist and TV researcher called Najma Kazi to help him with a film for Equinox called Storm in a D-Cup claiming that breast implants are completely safe. After two weeks she walked out. "It's not a joke to walk away from four or five months' work," she told me, "but my research was being ignored. The published research had been construed to give an impression that's not the case. I don't know how that programme got passed."Now he may be entitled to claim that there is a legitimate disagreement with him & his eco-pals over some of the subjects Durkin chose but over breast implants there is absolutely no dispute at all that the breast implant scare was stirred up by people like him, resulted in court cases costing $25 billion overall & that subsequent statistical evidence has proven it was wholly untrue.
Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, class-action lawsuits claimed that Dow Corning's silicone breast implants caused systemic health problems. The claims first centered around breast cancer, and then migrated to a range of autoimmune diseases, including lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and various neurological problems. This led to numerous lawsuits beginning in 1984 and culminating in a 1998 multi-billion dollar class action settlement. As a result, Dow Corning was in bankruptcy protection for nine years, ending in June 2004.That it was a proven eco-fascist fraud, mainly in the US, is not well known here because it didn't get much publicity either before or after, but it is inconceivable that Monbiot, who had described his breast implant programme as "the work of a charlatan", did not know for a fact that the accusation he was making, of Durkin having been deliberately wrong on this scare, which Monbiot supported, was wholly & completely untrue. He banked, correctly, on most Guardian readers being ignorant & not knowing Durkin had been undeniably right on this (& probably right on each other instance in which they had disagreed). That is not how an honest man finding himself in error behaves.
A number of large, independent reviews of the scientific literature, including the U.S. Institute of Medicine, have subsequently found that silicone breast implants do not appear to cause breast cancers or any identifiable systemic disease.