Sunday, December 21, 2003



SORRY! I HAVE MOVED



The posting below will be the last one on this site.



Click here for my new site.


And if That goes out of action, try my mirror site.



I have tried re-using this site recently but for days on end nothing new was showing so how blogger.com operate is a mystery to me... I imagine that what I put up will eventually appear but when?



CROOKED ALL-RIGHT!

"Crooked Timber" seems to be some sort of Leftist philosopher. I would never have read him except that Keith Burgess-Jackson seems to take him seriously. His defence of the Leftist "equality of results" doctrine versus the more conservative "equality of opportunity" doctrine is summarized by him in the two questions below:

1. What's the point of doing anything if you're not going to check whether it worked or not?
2. How do you find out whether a course of action worked or not, other than by the results?


He seems to think that these questions trump further discussion. So perhaps I should point out that they do not. The snide thing about the two questions is that "it worked" is not defined -- presumably in order to suggest that the favoured alternative (equal outcomes) is the only reasonable definition of it. Building your desired conclusions into your premises is an old Leftist trick of course, as I have shown many times before (e.g. here). A layman might call it "loading the dice".

So let me suggest some alternative definitions of "it worked". One suggestion would surely be that treating a person according to his own qualities rather than according to the qualities or wealth of his parents was a pretty desirable thing to do in and of itself. Why does it need to "work" in any way external to itself? If that is accepted, the Crooked One's point 2 becomes redundant.

Even if the deed is not taken to be intrinsically good, however, there are surely many, many alternative definitions of "it worked" available. If, for instance, it made people feel happier because it convinced them that they lived in a fair society, would that not be something that might cause us to say "it worked"? And checking that result could be as simple as doing a social survey.

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ELSEWHERE

I did not mention the Libyan story yesterday since everyone else was all over it but Hippercritical has some reasonable comments. Clearly, however, it is a huge triumph for GWB's policies. Saddam's capture must have tipped the scales.

The latest batch of government economic data reveals a new theme: inflation-free boom. It's a business-led scenario this country hasn't seen in many years. Bush administration supply-siders who argued in favor of permanent tax incentives to grow the investment side of the economy are being proven exactly right. Former top Bush economist Glen Hubbard -- one of the principal authors of last May's growth bill that lowered Uncle Sam's tax bite on investment by roughly 40 percent -- deserves loud kudos. Liberal columnist Paul Krugman, who opposes supply-side tax cuts at every turn, deserves a resounding Bronx cheer. Both the economy and the stock market (the Dow has moved past 10,000, and the S&P is up 23 percent on the year) are voting for President Bush.

Leftist Will Hutton is no fan of Bush, but unlike 90% of the world's environmentalists, he says the real action is in "The States", whereas the Europeans are smug. And Hutton is not kidding when he says "the States", he says that the U.S. State governments are the leading environmental reformers in the world. So you would think the Green/Left would love America, wouldn't you? No such luck of course. Like Hitler and the Islamic fundamentalists, they cannot be appeased.

Great news! Switzerland is now one of the countries which have recognized that the Ottoman Turks committed genocide against the mostly Christian Armenians in 1915. Muslims committing genocide? How amazing! The Kemalists took over Turkey from the Ottomans not long after that and have kept Turkey out of the hands of the Islamists since but even they are pretty brutal to their minorities -- the Kurds particularly. The last truly decent Muslim regime seems to have been that of the Kurd Saladin in the 12th century. The only prominent Muslim man of peace in the last 100 years that I can think of is Egyptian President Anwar Sadat -- and the Islamists shot him!

What's up with American Realpolitik? It's a great site -- specializing in political cartoons -- but every time I have tried to log on lately all I have got is the banner headline. Their server must be worse than blogspot -- which is saying something

Writing on Sasha Castel's blog, Scott Wickstein says that the generation of power via nuclear fusion is going commercial -- sort of. Nobody can decide where to put it, though. A notable absentee from the list of contributors to Sasha's blog is one Andrew Ian Dodge. I understand Sasha now lives in Canberra, Australia. I wonder where Andrew has got to? Did he ever make it to England?

Apparently Canada's new Prime Minister has taken some token steps in a Rightwards direction. We must be thankful for small mercies, I guess.

I am pleased to see that Michael Jennings too likes real ale. Australians are usually very rigid about liking only the lager beers that they are used to in Australia. My favourite drop was Ruddles County when I was in England. But Michael's wish for good food in an English pub is a tad optimistic.

Aaron Oakley has some good posts about the stupid and enormously expensive windmill craze that Greenies pushed so hard for so long.

I have just put up here some more of Chris Brand's latest thoughts -- on toyboys and other things.

My latest upload of a published academic journal article (here or here) is just another case of my demolishing the ill-informed arguments of a Leftist psychologist. A bit too technical for most readers, though.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Page is here or here.

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Saturday, December 20, 2003

THE LYING SKEPTICS

It gets worse. It looks like "The Skeptical Inquirer" was not credulous but straight-out dishonest in their support for the global warming theory. They depicted their favoured report on global warming as the outcome of a standard scientific peer-review process. As this report from Stats.org notes, it was nothing of the sort. What was published was a totally distorted version of what the scientists had said:

Frederick Seitz, former president of both the National Academy of Sciences and the American Physical Society, claimed that he had "never witnessed a more disturbing corruption of the peer review process than the event that led to this IPCC report." Seitz went on to charge that nearly all of the editorial changes made by the report's lead author, Benjamin Santer, "worked to remove hints of the skepticism with which many scientists regard claims that human activities are having a major impact on climate in general or global warming in particular." Others, including the independent but industry-backed Global Climate Coalition (GCC) went so far as to claim that the report had been "scientifically cleansed" in a political effort to emphasize alarm about global warming while deleting references to uncertainty.


And the second report that the Skeptics quoted also said nothing like what they claim:

"Last week the National Academy of Sciences released a report on climate change, prepared in response to a request from the White House, that was depicted in the press as an implicit endorsement of the Kyoto Protocol... As one of 11 scientists who prepared the report, I can state that this is simply untrue. For starters, the NAS never asks that all participants agree to all elements of a report, but rather that the report represent the span of views. This the full report did, making clear that there is no consensus, unanimous or otherwise, about long-term climate trends and what causes them."


Clearly, the Skeptics have been taken over by Greenie propagandists, with their characteristic disregard for the truth. Sad indeed.

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ELSEWHERE

Great stuff! In Canada a single guy can get a pension by claiming that he had a homosexual lover who died. Bad luck if your lover happens to have been a woman, I guess. "In what the gay community is describing as a monumental decision, an Ontario court ruled Friday that the federal government has discriminated against same-sex couples by denying pension benefits to survivors whose partners died before 1998"

Reality is beginning to bite for Germany's socialists. They have just introduced some reforms that are at least in the right direction: "Restrictive employment protection laws will be eased to enable small companies to dismiss workers at short notice. Unemployment and social welfare benefits will be merged to reduce costs. At the same time Germany's long-term unemployed will face penalties if they refuse to take up jobs even if they pay below union rates... The programme also includes measures to ... lower income tax"

More welfare abuse: "A STRING of Aboriginal work-for-the dole programs set up under the federal Government's $450million indigenous employment program, have collapsed amid allegations of financial misappropriation and mismanagement"

More glories of socialized medicine: "A woman was left to give birth alone in a hospital corridor, then told she had no choice but to watch her premature baby die"

Jeff Jacoby details some of the horrors perpetrated on the Iraqis by Saddam and says that no conceivable punishment can fit his crimes.

I guess its a start: "The Bush administration reached a free-trade agreement with four Central American countries yesterday, setting up a tough trade fight in Congress in an election year. The trade accord -- reached just weeks before the 10th anniversary of the North American Free Trade Agreement -- would allow more than 80 percent of U.S. consumer and industrial products into Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Honduras duty-free as soon as it went into force."

Michelle Malkin: "From homeland security personnel, I continue to hear open-borders horror stories. A Border Patrol agent who works along the northern border reports that federal immigration judges in his area are subverting the deportation process by refusing to issue arrest warrants for illegal alien absconders (fugitives who have been ordered deported but never showed up for their hearings). A special agent notes that San Diego supervisors continue to discourage interior immigration enforcement near the southern border. And countless rank-and-file immigration enforcement officers have written to express disgust at Washington's bipartisan talk of "amnesty" for millions of immigration law-breakers whose presence makes a mockery of homeland defense. What good is it, they wonder, to send American soldiers to defend other countries' borders if we're not willing to defend our own? "

Price controls can be deadly: "Who would ever dream that the economic fallacies to which U.S. officials subscribe could turn deadly? Yet that's what recently happened in Baghdad, where an American GI was shot dead while guarding long lines of angry and disgruntled consumers at a gasoline station in Baghdad. Why are there long lines at gas stations in Iraq?"

The Wicked one has got some good funnies up at the moment.

My latest academic upload here or here looks at attitude to Europe in England and Scotland shortly after the UK had joined. At that time opposition to joining in with Europe was primarliy associated with generally old-fashioned attitudes. I think that shows that being old-fashioned can have its advantages.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Page is here or here.

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Friday, December 19, 2003

Blogspot seems to be having another one of their “bad” periods at the moment. They have resumed “fixing” things that “aint broke”. As a result, my posts on blogspot yesterday did not show all day. I know from comments that some people did however use my mirror sites instead. “PC WATCH” was out of action all day too so I have decided that I will from now on put up a mirror site for it too. The mirror is HERE.



FROM BROOKES NEWS:

Truth about Iraq — or what the media is hiding The media has been lying to us about the real situation in Iraq. An American army officer reveals just how much progress has been made. So why have some of our journalists been lying?
George Soros, markets and democracy Recent comments by Soros on markets and democracy simply show how little knowledge of economics and history this 'brilliant' financier actually possesses. His political activities also bring into question his integrity.
Kuwaiti Daily declares that US won't quit in its war on terrorism Ahmad Al-Jarallah, the Editor-in-Chief of the Kuwaiti dailies Al-Siyassa and Arab Times, praised the U.S. fight against Jihad fighters. The following are excerpts from the article.
Taxes cuts and politics The present tax mess should really focus attention on Latham's approach to taxation and incomes compared with Beazley's approach.
Taiwanese marched for independence and democracy Up to 150,000 marchers descended on the Presidential Office to demand that President Chen Shui-bian scrap the Republic of China (ROC) and its symbols, and change the name of the country to Taiwan.

Details here

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MORE ON THE CREDULOUS “SKEPTICS”:

A reader writes:

“Your blog mentions that the “Skeptical Enquirer” seems to be impressed by a pro-global warming petition. "They say that because 2500 "scientists" signed a document saying that mankind is causing global warming therefore it must be true.

Well, there is a 19,200 name long petition here -- signed by "17,100 basic and applied American scientists, two-thirds with advanced degrees... Signers of this petition so far include 2,660 physicists, geophysicists, climatologists, meteorologists, oceanographers, and environmental scientists..who are especially well qualified to evaluate the effects of carbon dioxide on the Earth's atmosphere and climate. ..(and) ..5,017 scientists whose fields of specialization in chemistry, biochemistry, biology, and other life sciences"

There have of course been attempts by environmentalist true believers to sabotage the petition drive. However the organisers have, to their credit, made efforts to ensure its validity. "Of the 19,700 signatures that the project has received in total so far, 17,800 have been independently verified and the other 1,900 have not yet been independently verified. Of those signers holding the degree of PhD, 95% have now been independently verified. One name that was sent in by enviro pranksters, Geri Halliwell, PhD, has been eliminated. Several names, such as Perry Mason and Robert Byrd are still on the list even though enviro press reports have ridiculed their identity with the names of famous personalities. They are actual signers. Perry Mason, for example, is a PhD Chemist. " Of course science is never based on an opinion poll of practitioners. And governments and voters need to be skeptical about sacrificing long established rights and traditional freedoms on the altar of the scientific dogma du jour. The history of eugenics is a case in point.”

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ELSEWHERE

There is an amusing comment here about how the Left could see nothing good in the capture of Saddam and will not see any good in any conceivable events involving him.

It looks like Bjorn Lomborg, The Skeptical Environmentalist, has had the last laugh against his critics in his home-country of Denmark.

Sowell: “Lawlessness usually conjures up images of a wild frontier or mobs in the streets. But the painful reality is that the supreme examples of lawlessness in our times are in the august and sedate chambers of the Supreme Court of the United States.”

Bruce Bartlett puts the finger on WHY a lot of American manufacturing is ailing -- the huge costs imposed on it by government laws and regulations. It does look like the U.S. government is trying to drive jobs offshore.

Mark Steyn says Rumsfeld should be admired for being a plain speaker

Bleeding Brain has an amusing post about how insensitive he is when it comes to other people’s religions.

I thought at first that PrestoPundit must have a great sense of humour when I saw that he had this blog listed under “liberal bloggers” but on second thoughts I realized that he is very properly resisting the entirely inappropriate takeover of the word “liberal” by Leftists.

The latest upload of a chapter from my book shows that Leftist enmity to freedom of speech goes back a long way. Details here or in chapter 29 here. The fierce and unremitting attacks on freedom of speech by Leftists is one of the clearest proofs there is of how totalitarian and Fascistic Leftism basically is. Leftists cannot AFFORD to allow completely free speech. They NEED to monopolize the channels of communication. Why? Because the more people in general get to know about any Leftist assertion, the more absurd it will be seen to be. Leftism is simplistic and simplistic thinking cannot withstand the light of day.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Page is here or here.

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Thursday, December 18, 2003

Blogspot seems to be having another one of their “bad” periods at the moment and the posts that I have made to my usual site are not showing. I have therefore decided to post them here in case access to my usual site has got cut off altogether. It has happened before.

SOME N.Z. STUPIDITY

Former New Zealand Prime Minister Robert Muldoon is famous for commenting that the constant flow of emigration from New Zealand to Australia "raises the IQ of both countries" -- implying that the Kiwis who emigrate are stupid but Australians are even stupider. That comment is only one example of a generally derogatory view of Australians almost universally held in New Zealand: Much like the attitude of Canadians towards the USA --- and for similar reasons: resentment of a more affluent and capable big brother.

I was therefore rather amused by something that happened recently. A few months ago I bought some shares in one of the icons of New Zealand industry -- Fisher & Paykel, best known for making high-tech washing machies. Yesterday I received a dividend cheque from them -- to my amazement. These days dividends are normally deposited directly into a shareholder's bank A/c. Shortly after you buy into a company, they send you a form asking for your bank particulars and thereafter the money just appears on your statement. Fisher & Paykel sent me no such form, however, so I had to make a special trip to the bank to deposit their pesky cheque -- which I regard as a prehistoric thing to have to do. But it does not end there. I resolved to write to them and ask them to deposit my dividends directly in the future. But nowhere on the documentation that came with the cheque was there any address that I could write to! So I looked up their Annual Report, a big glossy production with lots of colour photographs, graphs, auditor reports and all the usual nonsense that you expect of a company annual report. But there was no address anywhere there either! Which is probably illegal, I would think. It was only by digging out the envelope that the report came in that I found a return address on the back of that. But that is not the end of the story either! Included with my cheque was a cheque to someone else with their dividend! Which I of course promptly sent on to the correct recipient. If that is how bright a New Zealand high-flyer is, it does not say much for the average Kiwi.

I guess NZ Pundit will never forgive me for saying that.

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THE SKEPTICS HAVE SOLD OUT

It’s sad to see a voice of reason fall silent but exactly that seems to have happened over at “The Skeptical Inquirer”. They quite rightly say that limitless skepticism leads nowhere. To be precise it leads to solipsism -- doubting everything but your own existence -- but the means they propose to limit skepticism are astounding. They seem to want to decide scientific truth not on the facts or on the balance of the probabilities but by majority vote! If you had taken a majority vote among the learned men of Galileo’s day you would have “discovered” that the sun rotated around the earth. And you would be WRONG! The example they give is instructive. They say that because 2500 “scientists” signed a document saying that mankind is causing global warming therefore it must be true. No weighting to the degree of expertise of the “scientists” involved is given (I cannot imagine 2500 “experts” in any scientific field -- which makes the whole thing reek of a propaganda exercise) nor is any account taken of how many of them stand to lose their research grants if the theory is disproven. But above all, no weighting is given to the many discordant FACTS -- such as evidence that global warming is occurring on Mars too. Did mankind cause THAT? Or did solar variability do it? I think we will have to rename them “The Credulous Inquirer”.

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ELSEWHERE

Ludicrous an idea though it is, Greenies have bullied governments into spending billions on windmills as an "alternative" source of electricity, but it seems -- sorry, Mr and Mrs Taxpayer -- that windmills too are now bad: "Since the phalanx of giant windmills began churning in the air above the Altamont Pass east of San Francisco Bay, an estimated 22,000 birds have died, including hundreds of golden eagles, red-tailed hawks, kestrels and other raptors, after flying into the spinning blades of the wind turbines". When will governments learn that it is impossible to please a Greenie?

Jeff Jacoby has a good post on how charitable donations so often don't go towards those whom they are supposed to help. I used to donate to World Vision until I discovered that they were anti-Israel. Ditto for the Red Cross. There's no simple solution. Even in India a lot of the street beggars are actually reasonably well-off by Indian standards. Treat people generously in your private life has always been my main idea of how to be kind.

Note the new address for Aaron’s Rantblog. His old address has gone to that great blogspot in the sky where blogspot sites do sometimes go. Warning: Aaron puts up lots of good graphics so his site is slow-loading unless you have a high-speed connection. Aaron’s current project is to get Hillary Clinton rather than George Bush as the No. 1 link returned by Google in response to the search-term “Miserable Failure”. A fun project, it seems to me. He has got an amusing photo of her up on his “failure” site.

Dave Huber has some more examples of the compulsive Leftism of the American teacher's union -- of which he is a regretful member.

Further to my suggestion on 15th that Saddam looked like Karl Marx, Valete Fratres has put up pictures of the two of them side by side. Scroll down to his post of 15th. The resemblance sure is there.

Carnival of the Vanities is up again with its usual select postings.

The Wicked one says that the old Soviet Union lives on -- in the U.S. bureaucracy. It is suing someone who transports elderly people too cheaply!

My latest academic upload (details here or here) is about why Scotland is a poor country when by all indicators it should be a rich one. Hint: They're knee-jerk socialists there. The enterprising Scots emigrated long ago.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Page is here or here.

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Wednesday, March 05, 2003



SORRY! I HAVE MOVED



The posting below will be the last one on this site.



Click here for my new site.


And if That goes out of action, try my mirror site.



I was getting constant error messages when loading to this site so it seemed at risk of grinding to a halt altogether. So I have decided to get out while the going is good. Pyra did make attempts to fix it but the errors kept recurring. Problems with their template servers, I gather.....



PILGER: AN INTERESTING CASE-STUDY...

TIM BLAIR in the THE BULLETIN (4 March 2003, p. 18) recently published these two quotes side by side:-

"No one can doubt its cruelty and atrocities, but comparisons with the Third Reich are ridiculous." - John Pilger on the regime of Slobodan Milosevic, Nov 15, 1999

"The current American elite is the Third Reich of our times." - John Pilger on the government of George W. Bush, Jan 29, 2003.

I feel rather sorry for Pilger. He has flashes of sanity and realism at times (as in his film about Pol Pot) but his desperate need for attention causes him to say ever more outrageous and unreasonable things -- to the point where he is basically just laughable. He is a good study in how the Leftist mind works. That juvenile need for attention overrides almost everything else.

There is a very good brief demolition of Pilger's film about Iraq here.

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IRAQ

Daily Rant points out that Clinton was at least as "unilateral" about Iraq as is Bush. In saying that I am recognizing that Leftists now use "unilateral" to mean "without universal approval" -- which is an example of the way Leftists have always loved to play with words rather than face reality. Of course any national leader who waited for universal approval before he did anything would never do anything at all. And having the approval of the corrupt French is certainly no honour either.

�Now please stop this preposterous charade of pretending to need the imprimatur of that exclusive club for mass murderers, thieves, thugs and tyrants (The United Nations) to justify anything whatsoever�. From Samizdata.

What a laugh: Some of the peace activists who went to Iraq to serve as human shields in the event of war returned home, fearing for their safety, a spokesman said Sunday. Via Hoosier Review

The Swedish Nazis are supporting Saddam! That must be comforting to the Lefties! There�s an old saying: �You know a man by the company he keeps�. Via Dean�s World.

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SOME INTERESTING QUOTES

Two good quotes from Peggy Noonan�s letter to the Democrats:

There is another problem. You have become the party of snobs. You have become the party of Americans who think they're better than other Americans.

and

This is the Democratic paradox: You want so much to run America and yet you seem not so fond of Americans.



There is a good analysis of Australia�s anti-Americans here. Excerpt:

Anti-Americanism should be studied as a serious psychological affliction, a pathological condition which paralyses the mind's analytical capacity.



OTHER READING

Gloom! There is an election campaign on in Australia�s most populous State and even the conservatives are promising an indefinite �moratorium� on genetically-modified crops if elected. And the Leftists have weighed in too, of course. Just when Australia has almost entirely got rid of the impoverishing stupidity of socialism from its politics we now have the impoverishing stupidity of the Greenies to contend with. Superstitious fear is all that is behind the GM ban. I guess we are still not far away from our caveman ancestors.

Here is an Arab-American who LIKES airline security checks.

A big international survey has found that: Christian religions are more positively associated with attitudes conducive to economic growth. Orrin Judd will like that one.

Black community leaders don't want their kids going to all-black schools. I can't say I blame them.

Chris Brand turns a cynical eye on claims that relationships between younger teenage girls and older men must always be a bad thing.

Today's academic paper from my past is here. It deals with some technical questions about how best to measure differences in people�s personalities.

Michael Darby documents more bungling in the government-run railway system of Australia�s largest State.

The Wicked one has a laugh at the �black� college degrees produced by Affirmative Action and gives three reasons why talk radio is Rightist.

Carnival of the Vanities is up again with its usual big range of reading.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit here instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Tuesday, March 04, 2003

LEFTIST �BIG LIES� AND THE �STOLEN GENERATION�

The CounterRevolutionary has recently argued (with obvious truth) that what influence Leftists have stems from their being better at propaganda rather than from their capacity to deliver desirable results. He argues therefore that conservatives should do more to press their arguments rather than just respond to Leftist claims. He is undoubtedly right but I think that conservatives will never be as good at propaganda because we do not have the Leftist�s carelessness about the truth.

The greatest triumph of the Leftist �big lie� technique in recent times would have to be the way they have persuaded almost everyone that Hitler was a Rightist when he was in fact one of them -- an extreme socialist. He was to the Right of Stalin but that is about all.

But there are many smaller examples of successful Leftist deception and the �stolen generation� story in Australia is one of them. The story is that wicked white racists early in the 20th century tore black children out of their mothers� arms and farmed them out to cruel white foster parents to be brought up in white ways rather than in black ways.

The truth is that it was white do-gooders and social workers just like the Leftists of today who ran the programme concerned. The children concerned were all half-castes (of partly white ancestry) and the wiseheads of the day felt that �for their own good� such children would have �a better chance� if they were brought up in white families. Like the Leftists of today, the �welfare� workers of that time felt that they knew what was best for other people -- regardless of what the people concerned might want. Disgusting!

But to this day most Australians believe it was all just racism -- with no awareness of the do-gooder motivation for it all.

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ANTISEMITISM AMONG THE CHRISTIAN RIGHT

There is an interesting account here of the prevalence of antisemitic beliefs among members of the US Christian Right. I think it is wise to keep this phenomenon in proportion, however. As the article also points out, the same people are often among the strongest supporters of Israel. In this they differ greatly from the antisemites of the Left who want to destroy Israel.

The Judaic religions (Judaism+Christianity+Islam) all tend to the view that their particular sect is the one and only possessor of the truth. So anybody of the "wrong" sect will tend to be condemned. So while Protestant fundamentalists may condemn Jews for their "wrong" beliefs, they would also condemn (say) Catholics with at least as much fervour -- because Catholic beliefs are "wrong" too.

At least Christian fundamentalists have usually evolved beyond the stage where they physically attack people with the "wrong" beliefs -- unlike Muslim fundamentalists.

And as for the anti-Israel attitudes of the current Pope -- well he IS a Pole. The Poles were generally delighted to help the Nazis round up the Polish Jews during World War II.

(Crossposted on Israpundit)

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MORE GRIEF FOR THE GREENIES

I noted some days ago that young Australians are less Green than their elders and also noted that, from what my 15-year-old son tells me, the kids get so much pro-Green and pro-black propaganda these days that it bores them silly and they react against it. I also see now that Tech Central Station has a name for the the young people concerned: "South Park Republicans"

The Swedish Greens have at last woken up to the fact that most recycling is in fact wasteful of energy and other resources and so are now OPPOSING recycling. (If the article fails to load, Instapundit has a big extract here)

Details here of just how ridiculous and wrong-headed recycling is. Here's just one little excerpt:

We are not running out of trees or forests. America has three-and-one-half times more forest land today than it had in 1920. America is growing 22 million new acres of forest annually while harvesting but 15 million acres, for a net gain of 7 million acres each year.


A classic article by SLATE magazine's economics columnist Steven Landsburg on "Why I am not an environmentalist". And the subtitle is: The Science of Economics Versus the Religion of Ecology. Excerpt:

The naive environmentalism of my daughter's preschool is a force-fed potpourri of myth, superstition, and ritual that has much in common with the least reputable varieties of religious Fundamentalism. The antidote to bad religion is good science. The antidote to astrology is the scientific method, the antidote to naive creationism is evolutionary biology, and the antidote to naive environmentalism is economics.


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OTHER READING

Chris Brand discusses the present state of the nature/nurture debate.

The Wicked one tells is what a vague and wimpish character Abraham Lincoln was and how little respect he had from those who knew him.

Michael Darby has a rather horrifying story about how a white tourist was treated by black Zimbabwean �police�.

Today's academic paper from my past is here. It deals with the rather hilarious claim made by Leftist psychologists to the effect that conservatives are too pro-authority. The paper shows that there is in fact no such thing as a general attitude to authority -- i.e. approving of one type of authority does not mean that you will therefore approve of other types of authority.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit here instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Monday, March 03, 2003


DEMOCRACY NATURAL?

A recent book by Rubin is summarized by a reviewer as arguing that:

Autocratic society violates human nature for most of those who belong to it and therefore is inherently unstable. Rubin also argues, however, that libertarianism is unstable because it entails extremes of individuality that equally violate evolved human tendencies and thus cause social breakdown.


And the conclusion from that is that the compromise represented by modern democracy best suits human nature.

That may be a comforting conclusion but I think one of the assumptions is wrong. The plain historical fact is that human beings have almost always lived under a tyranny of some sort. Ancient Athens emerged from tyranny for about 100 years and then self-destructed and the Roman republic was never more than an oligarchy until it too became an empire. And the supremacy of Parliament in England dates only from 1649. So if autocracy is against human nature we have had an amazing amount of it. Some governments of the past were more consultative than others but there was almost always a king, Pharaoh, emperor or the like running the show.

I think it is much more obvious to argue that autocracy is what in general comes naturally and the love of big government exhibited by Leftists is the modern-day evidence of that inclination.

So modern democracy is in fact a painfully learned lesson in overcoming human nature that only a minority of humankind seem to have learned to this day. Human nature is powerful and I would be the last to underestimate it but it is not a straitjacket. Wearing clothes is not natural but we all do it. Let�s hope that we will all also practice democracy one day.

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A CONFUSED GREENIE

There is an interview with a rather confused "feminist critic" of environmentalism here. She rightly sees people-hating impulses at work among the Greens and says that is Right-wing. Then she endorses the optimistic perspectives of free market anti-Green economist Julian Simon. So Left is Right and Right is Left to her. Maybe she has been converted to conservatism but has not realized it yet.

It was whilst trying to debunk Simon's work that Green heretic Lomborg realised Simon may after all be correct. For more on Simon see here. The story of Simon's influence on Lomborg is here

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MORE GREENIE NEWS

Hooray! Exposing Greenie dishonesty works! After a lot of publicity of their lies, the Greenies in Brazil have given up opposing nuclear power (the safest, cleanest and cheapest form of energy generation there is) and new nuclear power stations are now being built there. Via Aaron Oakley.

Hooray again! It looks like Russia too will refuse to ratify the nutty Kyoto �Greenhouse� treaty. Death knell! Via Country Store

There are two quality articles here and here from the CIS detailing the growing threat of old fashioned trade protectionism disguised as new fashioned environmentalism.

Dioxin has long been one of the great Greenie swear-words. All sorts of health disasters have been blamed on it and anything that produces dioxin is supposed to bring us all a slow and painful death -- and deform our babies too, of course. But it has just been discovered that the peat fires that the Scots and Irish have used for millennia to keep themselves warm in winter also give off lots of dioxin! How awful for those poor Scots and Irish! They must not realize how ill and deformed they are.

And it does look like the poor old Greenies are gradually having global warming chipped away from them too. Note this:

Data compiled from the journals of early Arctic explorers casts doubt on the assumption that recent thinning of Arctic ice is the result of human-induced climate change. Via Cronaca.

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OTHER READING

When the US attacks Iraq, could it spare a few bombs for Riyadh? The way the Saudis torture Westerners to extract false confessions puts them in much the same league as Saddam. A lovely lot, those Arabs.

Revealed Truth thinks that the current Leftist hatred of the Jews may be motivated by a feeling of betrayal. Minorities are supposed to be uniformly Leftist.

Chris Brand notes some encouraging signs of realism among Muslims.

The Wicked one has had a couple of good jokes lately.

Michael Darby has a link to the persecution of Christians by Moslems and another report on the incompetence of a government-run railway

Today's academic paper from my past is here. I show that middle-America tends to be �authoritarian� in the sense used by psychologists but also point out that this essentially means no more than that middle-Americans have old-fashioned values.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit here instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Sunday, March 02, 2003



THE NAZIS ARE BACK -- AND STILL ON THE LEFT

This article by David Brooks -- already noted on Israpundit -- must be one of the saddest articles I have read for a long time. An old and cruel folly has roared back into life. Although I am an atheist with not a shred of Jewish ancestry, I have been writing on antisemitism for over 30 years (e.g. Ray, 1972). When I started out, antisemitism was vestigial and no Leftist in the Western world would have a bar of it but now it really is a major phenomenon on the Left worldwide -- including the �liberals� of the USA. The battle with irrationality is unceasing, I am afraid.

Just listen to this bit of poison from Yale university:

But does the prevalence of Jews in American media, business and politics help explain America's steadfast support for Israel, whose 35-year occupation of Palestinian lands is an affront to human decency? Of course.


It�s Hitler�s �National Socialism� all over again. That a decent person of any religion might support a people trying to defend itself against persecution, outside military attacks and internal terrorism is obviously beyond the ken of the hate-filled writer (Sahm Adrangi).

Reference:
Ray, J.J. (1972) Is antisemitism a cognitive simplification? Some observations on Australian Neo-Nazis. Jewish Journal of Sociology 15, 207-213.

(Crossposted on Israpundit)

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LEFTIST CHILD-HATERS

An appalling quote from a Feminazi professor who objected to her female colleagues taking leave to have babies:

"Having babies is a choice -- already, people who have babies are getting tax breaks, getting hugely discounted insurance (forcing those more reproductively responsible to subsidise them), and often getting to slack off work for some 15 years using children as an excuse to reschedule meetings and avoid heavy committee work. This is NOT a women's issue -- it is a matter concerning a specific group of people taking advantage of the rest of their department."


More here

Who does she think will support here in her old age through their taxes? Those selfsame people who are now babies. If everybody was "reproductively responsible" in her sense, she would die of hunger and disease in her old age -- and justly so.

Speaking of feminism, I am no feminist but I do like and respect women so I would have a strong urge to put a .50 calibre slug through the guy in this picture.

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HUMAN SHIELD MOTIVATION

A good summary of "human shield" motivation below:

Hi, I'm Special Ed and I'm a human shield. I come from a country with many freedoms and opportunities, all of which I take for granted. I suffer from a God complex, low self-esteem, a desperate need to feel better about myself at the expense of others and I crave attention like a three year old. I feel the need to take time out from my job and leave my family so that I may deny you - the Iraqi people - the same freedoms and opportunities I do not appreciate in my own country. I am committed to preserving Saddam Hussein's brutal and oppressive regime. Why? Because I'm a socialist and I know what is best for the Iraqi people.


From The Ville (Post of 26th)

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THE "PEACE" MARCHERS

Spiked argues that the British "peace" marchers are not interested in peace or anything else much. They are simply alienated -- they do not trust government or politicians. The anti-government factor does help explain why there are some antiwar conservatives and libertarians.

But The Tocquevillian thinks that the American peaceniks are just the old Communist-sympathizers revived.

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OTHER READING

There is an article here on the Left's 'unholy alliance' with Islamic extremism

Anti-business bureaucrats have twisted Bill Clinton's medical leave law so that you can now take sick-leave for all sorts of minor ailments and still have your job protected.

Who says there is free speech in America? Not at Michigan State University, there�s not. How can someone in the US get a criminal record for doing something that is protected by the US Constitution? I would really like to know. And particularly since blacks can do exactly the same thing with impunity. America sure is a classically racist society. There is one law for whites and another for blacks. It�s a mockery of justice.

Chris Brand thinks that �paedophile� Roman Polanski has done no harm and that better nutrition can prevent a lot of crime.

Michael Darby has a reflection on socialism being inimical to families.

Today's academic paper from my past is here. In it I again review Altemeyer�s claims about Right-wing authoritarianism -- this time in the context of the overall lack of a scientific orientation among modern academic psychologists.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit here instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Saturday, March 01, 2003

ENGLAND OR THE USA?

Over at England's Sword there is quite a good debate going on in the Comments about whether the USA or England is the better place to live. I have spent time in all the English-speaking countries and my first preference is Australia (my country of birth) but after that I choose England. The US is clearly better off in almost every material respect but I just LIKE England better -- mainly because it is a much more relaxed place, I think. Also, I think that the English have by far the best patriotic songs (I am listening to an infinite loop of "Jerusalem" as I write this). On the other hand, I think that the greatest and truest gentleman who has ever lived is an American -- Ronald Reagan.

Some thoughts from others on the countries concerned ....

In the UK, one snowflake is enough to bring the country to a standstill.

There is a good article from Britain on the stupidity of America-bashing here

Gregory Hlatky has an interesting post on how much more Fascist Europe is when compared to the USA.

"Damn Americans. . . . I hate those bastards." The words of a "liberal" Canadian member of Parliament. What is that if it is not left-wing racism? And a particularly stupid form of racism at that. More here.

There is a fun article here which argues that instead of making Britain's House of Lords less hereditary, it should be made WHOLLY hereditary. He makes a good case too.

Interesting impressions of a newcomer to Southern California here. I had similar impressions when I first went there over 25 years ago.

Chomsky's virulent hatred of America has apparently made him insane. He actually says "East Europe under Russian rule was practically a paradise" More here.

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LEFTIST DENIAL OF REALITY

Freelance Radical has some interesting ideas about:

Why people might become ignorant liberal-lefty's:

DENIAL

These are individuals who so deeply desire to never become identified with any form of aggression, that they'll dissociate themselves from its reality and completely deny its existence in an attempt to perceive themselves, others, and the rest of the world, as being tolerant, peace-loving, and rational. It's a really sad and ironic truth, however, that their unwillingness [when confronted with aggression] to assert their own authority, while at the same time curtailing that of others, causes the proliferation of that very same evil aggression they so much abhor.

FEAR

People who spent their childhood with parents who were either violent, psychotic, or both, would be unable to admit to themselves, when young, that they were at the mercy of adults they could not trust. Acknowledging this violence or craziness as being real, could invoke such catastrophic fear in a child, that it might literally be unable to survive. So it blinds itself to what its parent really is. But this blinding terror continues to operate long after such people have become adults, making them unable [or unwilling] to acknowledge similar truths in the real-life world of political matters.

BELONGING

For many people, life is boring and nobody seems to care about anything too much and so they get kinda depressed just getting up in the morning. That is, until they decide to join the anti-war crowd and suddenly they're part of a group, a gang, an organization, and they've got a "home" and others care about where they go and how they'll get there and they're invited to join a bus trip, a flight to another city, a sign-making group, discussion forums, strategy planners.......wow!! life is no longer boring and they don't want this to end - not ever - and so, these liberal-lefty anti-war marchers have zero interest in ever finding out about any political truth that might ruin their new-found sense of belonging!


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UNIVERSITY ANTISEMITISM

There is often a temptation among right-wingers to think, "Why can't this problem of anti-Semitism just go away? It's such a distraction from more vital concerns." But the problem is, as much as you would like it to, the problem of anti-Semitism doesn't go away, and if you ignore it, it just gets worse. Furthermore, as cannot be said often enough, the Jews are the canaries in the coal mine. When a society starts veering into moral nihilism, the first target is almost always the Jews. But they're only the first target.


More here

(Crossposted on Israpundit)

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OTHER READING

Today's academic paper from my past is here. In it I expose the almost bovine stupidity of a famous Leftist psychologist who tries to pin authoritarianism onto conservatives.

Chris Brand has more on C.R.A.C.K. and Britain's ethnic problems.

The Wicked one tries to explain the popularity of Hitler in British schools.

Michael Darby has a retort to John "Third Reich" Pilger.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit here instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Friday, February 28, 2003


CHIRAC IS JUST BEING FRENCH

The French have always hated the way �inferior� British and now American culture has been so influential worldwide. They think that �Gloire� (glory) should always belong primarily to France. So they have always been very prone to lumping together the despised British and Americans as �The Anglo-Saxons� -- even though US/UK co-operation has been far from complete in the past (e.g. in two world wars, the Suez invasion and Vietnam). They even call Kofi Annan an Anglo-Saxon because he speaks English! Now that the co-operation between Britain and America has really become as whole-hearted as the French always pretended it was, that really frustrates them -- hence their present efforts to obstruct the �Anglo-Saxon� attack on Iraq.

My favourite Professor has published a defence of French military prowess. He has to go a long way back to find much to say about victories, however, and his idea that Napoleon was defeated only by superior numbers is way-off. Napoleon was defeated by his misjudgment of Russian resolve and the Russian winter and it was his hesitancy that lost him the battle at Waterloo. Napoleon was his own worst enemy. And he wasn�t French anyhow. His native language was a form of Italian. And William the conqueror may have spoken French but his immediate ancestry was Norse (Viking).

There is a nice anti-French poster here that would look good on a lot of websites

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�FRANKENSTEIN� SCIENCE

This is the sort of thing that would have Greenies frothing at the mouth. How DARE our scientists gaily produce such �unnatural� organisms. Should be a law ....

�I recently heard a presentation on this crazy guy, Peter Schultz, who has engineered bacteria to use para-aminophenylalanine instead of amber codons. The bacteria synthesize para-phenylalanine, have a para-phenylalanine tRNA synthetase, and and insert it with very high fidelity whenever the amber codon is found. The amber codon, which causes the ribosome to stop reading the mRNA when it's found, is apparently quite rare, and because bacterial mRNAs aren't as processed as eukaryotic ones, the bacteria get along quite well. I was thinking it would be really keen to make a series of mutants, each of which incorporated a different D-amino acid instead of the L version. Then, analysis of the structures of the D tRNA synthetases, of the ribosome translating the codon, and of the resulting protein could contribute a little information towards answering why we use all L amino acids.


More here. That a better understanding of all life will come from people doing this sort of thing would not worry a Greenie. They want to take us all back to a primitive past anyway.

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IRAQ

The latest claim that British Prime Minister Tony Blair is losing support for war on Iraq is nicely answered here.

Just a reminder here of what the American military freed the Afghans from. And some good news about what Afghanistan is like now.

There is a good site here that spells out the comparison between Saddam Hussein and Adolf Hitler.

Antiwar protesters are animated by a deep dislike of George Bush. They don�t like his mannerisms, his haircut, his use of the word �evil�. In short, they dislike his style . . . and for this they are willing to march in defense of fascism incarnate, chant infantile rhymes in public, and chain themselves to Iraqi military installations. From Invisible Hand -- who backs up his argument with lots of quotes from what Leftists have been saying. I think he has a point. The Left really can be that infantile.

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OTHER READING

Today�s academic paper from my past is here and deals with the fact that many people who answer questionnaires will say �Yes� to anything. Ways of dealing with this problem are analysed but it is pointed out that many psychologists simply ignore the problem -- making their survey results pretty meaningless.

Lovely! America�s Nation Organization of [Leftist] Women tried to get anti-abortion protesters sent to jail for protesting! Free speech anyone? Not if Leftists have their way! Fortunately the Supreme Court has just knocked that attempt on the head. (Article requires free registration)

The USA seems to be in danger of banning all cloning. Charles Murtaugh bravely battles the vast ignorance so frequently expressed on this subject and makes a good case for allowing at least some forms of scientific research on the subject to proceed.

Orrin Judd reproduces another wonderful speech by Ronald Reagan -- whom Orrin refers to simply as �The man�.

Michael Darby has a review of the situation in Zimbabwe

Chris Brand has an excerpt of a news report about some controversial help being given to drug addicted mothers in the USA.

The Wicked one has some fun with Korean names and New Zealand TV.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit here instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Thursday, February 27, 2003

MY ACADEMIC PAST

In my now rather distant past I taught psychology for two years and sociology for 12 years at major Australian universities. During that time I did a lot of research and that research resulted in my getting over 250 papers published in the academic journals. In the age of Google and the internet, however, very few people -- even academics -- now read academic journals. I am therefore in the weeks ahead going to be putting up my old academic papers on Blogspot in the faint hope of introducing them to a wider audience. I have always tried to write even my academic papers in as jargon-free a way as possible so I live in some hope that there may be many outside the universties who can follow what I have written.

The paper I have just put up here asks about the relationship between ambition and anxiety. If you are an anxious sort of person does that mean that you are also ambitious or does anxiety make you less ambitious? Or are the two unconnected? (statistician�s jargon for �unconnected� is �orthogonal�). Have fun (I hope)!

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FROGGY MATTERS

The Wicked one point out that the French have despised Americans for at least a century.

This article by Semmens points out that giving the U.N. a power of veto over American war plans for Iraq amounts to giving Jacques Chirac a veto and points out what an unsavoury character he is to be wielding any veto.

Prominent British Conservative politician David Davis thinks that if Scotland and Wales can have a parliament of their own in addition to seats at Westminster then there should be a wholly English parliament too. Logical. If the USA, Germany, India, Australia and Canada can have successful Federal systems, why not England too? Let's leave centralism to the French.

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THOSE NAUGHTY GENES

Another good article by Steve Sailer in reply to the Leftist claim that "science" shows there is no such thing as race. Leftists really are brilliant at ignoring the evidence in front of their eyes.

There is a fairly scandalous story here about the repeated misuse of DNA evidence by government prosecutors. Be afraid!

Eugenics lives! Genetic screening has now all but eliminated an awful hereditary disease. Via Steve Sailer.

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AFFIRMATIVE RACISM

Hello Bloggy takes a swipe at the argument that affirmative action benefits us all.

Chris Brand points to the idiocy and injustice of affirmative action in British universities.

One of my correspondents (a medical specialist) writes to me:

"Of great amusement to me are the leftist doctors that crusade for "better access to care" for "underpriveleged Blacks" - clearly racially profiling - but encourage you not to say "The patient was a 25 year old Black male with a gunshot wound to the chest" etc. because "race isn't relevant" to the discussion of the patient."

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LEFTIST MOTIVATION

A good line from SpicedSass: "Probably why the Whores of Hollywood are so symbiotic with liberalism. They all specialize in creative lying."

Is this the ultimate Leftist distortion of history? "And did you ever think about the socialist revolution in France that was crushed by D-Day because the socialists were fighting off the Nazis single-handedly?" Via Layman's Logic. Again we see Leftists ignoring reality in favour of their dream-world.

A recent documentary about Cuba showed that you can shove facts and reality right down the throats of Leftists and it just makes them angry. They prefer their preconceptions to the truth. Their ego is so bound up with them being right and everybody else wrong that they just do not WANT facts. Via Aaron Oakley.

A famous Heinlein quote: The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire. That does just about sum up the Left/Right division these days.

Michael Darby notes all the things that the "peace" demonstrators do NOT demonstrate about. "Compassion not included" seems to be their motto.

This article points out that Leftist guru Robert Fisk realizes that the liberation of Iraq will be welcomed by Iraquis but still hates it because it will be done by Americans. Great hatyers, those Leftists.

Amax gives Leftie columnist Philip Adams a big blast for the dishonesty of his criticisms. Things that are bad in GWB are OK in Saddam, for instance.

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Comments? Email me here or here. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit here instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Wednesday, February 26, 2003


THE AIDS VACCINE AND BLACKS

I am rather pleased that the news about there being a really good vaccine against AIDS that works with blacks only has got a lot of coverage. See here and here. What surprises me a little is that most people seem to be unable to explain the finding. It seems to me that there is an obvious evolutionary explanation: AIDS is said to originate with West African monkeys and to have been passed to man by West African blacks killing monkeys and eating them. American negroes originate from West Africa. Fill in the gaps.

In case the gap answers are not obvious, let me point out: AIDS is not fatal to everyone and the survivors of it over the millennia would therefore have tended to spread the genes that promoted survival throughout the West African population. So presumably most West Africans need only a little help to beat AIDS -- and the vaccine gives them that little bit of extra help.

That�s probably an oversimplified explanation but I suspect that it starts us off in the right direction. One of many possible questions would be: Is HIV a recent mutation or something that has been around for thousands of years? Lots of people think the latter but it would actually make more sense if it were a recent mutation so that inherited immunity to its predecessors was only weakly helpful with the present mutation.

The Leftists are frantically panning the whole study, of course, with the usual comment being �the numbers are too small�. But the fact that the results among blacks were statistically significant at the <.01 level means precisely that the result was NOT the outcome of small sample size. Anyway, if I were a black gay, I would be wanting that vaccine NOW!

Note that findings of medically-relevant differences between the major races are not at all new.

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MORE PROBLEMS FOR GREENIES

The Baltic Sea has the most extensive ice cover in decades. Oh Dear! Where has all that nice global warming gone?

A nasty one for the Greenies: Using a dishwasher may be be better for the environment than washing up by hand!

The prophets of doom were telling us that the world was in danger of global cooling not so long ago!

Young Australians are less Green than their elders. Aaron Oakley thinks it might be because all reasonable Greenie demands have now been met. From what my 15-year-old son tells me, however, the kids get so much pro-Green and pro-black propaganda that it bores them silly and they react against it.

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OUR DELIGHTFUL PRIMITIVES

Ever since Rousseau, Leftists have tended to romanticize primitive people and their religions and say how much better and wiser they are/were than modern man. The Maya of Central America were once an example of such puffery. But note what one historian says now that Maya writing has been deciphered: "decipherment transformed the Maya, once thought to be unusually peace-loving, into one the most vicious and violent of all ancient cultures, one delighting in torture and human sacrifice". But Leftists would like such behaviour anyway. Look at Stalin. Western Leftists defended him until the day he died -- and then some.

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ELSEWHERE

The Carnival of the Vanities is up again -- with 27 posts on many topics.

This gave me a laugh: The French Foreign minister (Villepin) has written that Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo "shines with an aura worthy of victory". With a wacko like that in charge of French foreign policy, no wonder the USA is having trouble with France. The Corsican was a clown at Waterloo anyway. He used no strategy -- just a frontal attack -- and waited until lunchtime to advance. If he had moved before dawn (like many before him) he would probably have won.

Better Living Through Software has put a nasty spin on Red Ken's London congestion charge. His version is:
But the way I see it, here is what happened -- traffic was bad, and someone had the brilliant idea "things would be a lot better if we pass a law that says poor people are not allowed to use the roads" -- and they passed a law.

That should cause some heartburn among Red Ken's supporters if it gets bruited about.

The sad story about the kid who reached 4th grade without being able to read shows that if equality is enforced, achievement becomes irrelevant -- so his teachers were simply obeying the stupid Leftist system they were in.

Chris Brand has quotations from several scholars to the effect that inherited IQ has a big influence on where you end up in the British social class scheme.

Michael Darby says it is all about oil money for the French and Germans and that they have no conscience.

The Wicked one has a good Jewish joke.

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Comments? Email me. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my "First Draft" site instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Tuesday, February 25, 2003

IQ AND THE RACE ISSUE

Charles Murtaugh gives cautious approval to the notion that IQ is both important and genetically heritable -- which is rather big of him given the mountain of scientific findings to that effect -- but he seems to give first priority in his thinking to showing that he is not a racist. That is understandable I suppose, but it would surely be better for us all if he and those like him gave top priority to finding and reporting the facts -- palatable or unpalatable as they may be. But his commentary is interesting and he does have some interesting links.

Marc Miyake also has an interesting discussion of the genetics of race but seems to me to be too optimistic about how much choice people have in determining what they become. Undoubtedly genetics is only one factor. Different environments do have an effect. But anybody who knows the twin studies will know that identical twins reared apart are nearly as similar as identical twins reared together. That does not leave a lot of room for environmental influences. The studies by Martin and others have shown that even political ideology is highly heritable genetically.

References:
Eaves, L.J., Martin, N.G., Meyer, J.M. & Corey, L.A. (1999) Biological and cultural inheritance of stature and attitudes. In: Cloninger, C.R., Personality and psychopathology. Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Press.
Martin, N. & Jardine, R. (1986) Eysenck's contribution to behaviour genetics. In: S & C. Modgil (Eds.) Hans Eysenck: Consensus and controversy. Lewes, E. Sussex: Falmer

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AIDS AND RACE

Wow! We are going to hear a lot of repercussions from this research finding: The latest AIDS vaccine was completely ineffective among whites but protected three quarters of blacks! Racial differences, anyone? It appears that blacks need only a small amount of help to beat AIDS but whites are not so lucky.

Left-leaning scientists have always told us that race does not exist -- despite the evidence of our eyes. Odd if something non-existent becomes essential to medical prescribing!

I imagine that Leftist �concern� for blacks will now get this vaccine buried (probably under �more research is needed�) because of how embarrassing it is -- thus depriving blacks of protection they could have.

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IRAQ

The hypocrisy of feminists in not condemning Saddam for his brutal treatment of women is breathtaking. Wendy McElroy gives the details.

The Kurdish "Peshmerga" in Iraq seem poised to help out in defeating both Saddam and his Islamic militant allies as soon as the war begins.

"The greatest danger of all would be to do nothing.": Words of J.F. Kennedy during the Cuban missile crisis. Very relevant to Iraq. Via Blogs of War.

N. Georgia Dogma says: "Total nations that are signed on to help the U.S. vis-a-vis Iraq: 34. Total NATO members that are in agreement with the U.S. policy vis-a-vis Iraq: 16 of 19"

A good point from a German blogger: "As I see it the disagreement over the war on Iraq isn't really one between nations like Germany and America anyway, rather a left-right policy dispute, one more reason to let my voice as a German conservative be heard here."

A good point from an ex-Catholic: "The Pope has called for Catholics to fast on Ash Wednesday against war in Iraq. Hows about a fast against child molestation? Against hush money? Against suppression of felony evidence?"

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ELSEWHERE

A free-trade agreement between Australia and the United States is said to be �close� -- as these things go. Great if it happens.

How awful for the Leftists! There has just been a big survey to find which were America�s most dangerous prescription drugs>. And all were generics! Not one was a brand-name drug produced by a big pharmaceutical company! The story will now get buried, of course but imagine the puffed-up outrage if one of the most dangerous drugs had been a brand-name drug! The top scorers: - Insulin - Morphine - Heparin - Warfarin - Potassium Chloride. More here.

If you have not yet seen any of the pictures of the latest weirdo Japanese fashion statement, there is one here.

Michael Darby has a rather amazing account of how an Australian government-owned railway is run. The British will not be very surprised.

The Wicked one has an account of what happens when you abandon all standards and say everything is relative. Christians in particular will like this one.

Chris Brand has some more news from the paedohysteria front in Britain and elsewhere.

China Hand has posted again despite being barred by the Chinese system from reading his own posts on Blogspot. He has just been to Vietnam and compares Vietnam with China. He finds that the Vietnamese have still got a lot to learn about being business-friendly and that their progress is slow as a result.

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Comments? Email me. If there are no recent posts here blame Blogger.com and visit my "First Draft" site instead or check my HomePage for a new blog address.

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Monday, February 24, 2003


A SIMPLE STATEMENT ABOUT IRAQ

The �It�s all about oil� mantra does seem to feed off a genuine incomprehension among many people about why the US is going to war with Iraq. So let me put it in one simple sentence that maybe will get through to the confused ones: The forthcoming Iraq war is a defensive war -- to protect the US from further terrorist acts like 9/11 by keeping dangerous weapons out of the hand of the Islamic lunatics. I hope that helps someone.

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THE GORILLA ARAFAT

An interesting but exceedingly optimistic view from a Leftist U.S. blogger:

The problem is that Arafat is an 800 lb. criminal gorilla. He has to go, as he PERSONALLY benefits from the status quo to a degree that dwarfs anything on the Israeli side. If a deal can be worked out with Israel's sponsors in Washington that, because of Arafat's longstanding simpatico relationship with SADDAM HUSSEIN, Israel has full cover to remove him and Fatah, and then implement the rest of Mitzna's agenda, we will see a political resolution of the "Israeli-Palestinian crisis" within one year


(Crossposted on Israpundit)

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GREENIES HATE THEIR HERETICS

Tim Gillin writes:

Lomborg is not the first heretic to be sent to coventry by the green faithful. This older post by former Greenpeace founder Patrick Moore shows an earlier incident in the campaign.

Moore's heresy is his belief that "the sustainable economy" beloved by environmentalists needs a forestry industry and green campaigns against foresty, especially clearcutting in old growth forests, do more harm than good.

To add insult to injury he has pointed out that "clearcuts", a photogenic eyesore that is a moral sin to the greens, of themselves, are no more environmentally damaging in the long run than the various 'natural' calamities that forests take in their stride. The attempt to equate clearcutting with deforestation is misleading propaganda. Clearcutting is a forest management technique that can be used destructively or as part of sustainable management strategy. 'Deforestation' only occurs when the natural forest cover is not permitted to grow back usually due to farming.


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A COLOUR PROBLEM

Tim Gillin writes about the latest caper of Australia's "multicultural" bureaucrats:

This is a bit odd and may upset your Irish ancestors:

The organisers want everyone to wear orange to celebrate harmony day. Orange is said to represent the Australian sun. Considering maybe 20-25% of Australia's population are of southern Irish descent this seems to be a lapse in the bureaucracy's ethnic sensitivity radar. Would they dare suggest we wear 'white' to represent the colour of crashing waves? Why not recommend the colours of the Aussie flag or our sporting colours instead? My own views on this derive from this old Top 40 song.


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ELSEWHERE

Dr Weevil thinks that the antisemitism of the modern-day Left will be electoral suicide for them. I hope he is right.

Michael Miller has just put up a whole swag of new stuff on his �Hitler was a Leftist� site. He has had quite a few hits for a site that has been up for only 2 or 3 weeks.

Leftist twit, Eric Alterman, has just made a flying visit to Europe to find out if it is anti-American or not. His conclusion?? Surprise, Surprise!! He says that they are not anti-American, just anti-Bush. He even seems to think the French are not anti-American. The French are anti-everyone non-French!

Bleeding Brain says of the French: �Their selfish motives for attempting to preserve Saddam Hussein are absolutely inexcusable. And there is much, much more ....

Wow! Ken Livingstone's congestion charge on London roads is not the only bit of Friedmanite thinking surfacing on the British Left. Stephen Pollard points to lots of other Friedmanite thinking in the British Labour Party. The sensible Left in Britain seems to be growing. Maybe the loonies will soon be marginalized.

There is a BIG post at Critical Mass about the utter destruction that has been wreaked on black education at high school level by affirmative action. Leftist tolerance and lack of any standards has meant a total betrayal of black students -- giving them virtually no education at all. Leftist dishonesty really is immensely destructive wherever it is allowed to prevail.

A good post at Tobacco Road that begins: "If today's Democrats had been in power during World War II they would have opposed the Manhattan Project... �

Michael Darby has some comments on the disgraceful state of child protection services in New South Wales and some moral thoughts from Eddie Cross in Zimbabwe about what history indicates for the future of the Mugabe regime.

Chris Brand has a post on the importance of general intelligence.

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Sunday, February 23, 2003


�GERMANIC�, �TEUTONIC� AND THE JEWS

In my various postings about the sources or alleged sources of the respect for individual liberty that characterizes the English-speaking nations, I have often referred to what I take to be the ancient Anglo-Saxon sources of such attitudes and have referred to such attitudes as �Germanic� -- on the perfectly undisputed grounds that the Angles and the Saxons were a German-speaking people when they arrived in England 1500 years ago.

The word �Germanic� has troublesome resonances for many people, however. It sounds to them like Hitler. They ask: Is what I am saying not reminscent of Nazi doctrines of German racial superiority? Am I not attributing at least one type of superiority to Germans just by reason of their being German?

In response I have to say that I have been a student of the Nazi phenomenon for most of my adult life and have even written several papers for Jewish journals about it but I still do not know what Hitler thought was Germanic. On my reading he had no clear idea at all: Just confused and contradictory utterances from time to time. He was in fact much more vocal about being Aryan than being Germanisch. So it is difficult to show that my ideas are dissimilar to Hitler's without knowing exactly what his ideas were. His speeches are raves rather than anything consistent.

I guess, however, that the one lesson he would NOT draw from German history is precisely the one that I DO draw: That the German spirit is inimical to tyranny and in favour of individual liberty. I think it is fairly clear at least that individual liberty was not one of his priorities. So does that not make me ANTI-Nazi? I think it does.

But why should I even try to make such distinctions between my arguments and Hitler�s? I do not really see why a rational debate should be distracted by irrelevant comparisons with a populist demogogue. On the other hand, I do not like to give needless offence so I am making this clarification.

Actually, I should probably have been using the word �Teutonic� instead of �Germanic� as it is clear that everything I have so far said about the Anglo-Saxons is equally true (if not more so) of the Scandinavians. Those Vikings were certainly an individualistic, independent and decentralized lot! They also treated women more or less as equals and have a great history of democracy. The oldest continuously sitting parliament in the world is in fact the Althing of Iceland -- with a history going back 1,000 years. And Scandinavians are almost 100% Protestant too -- which fits with a spirit of independence and individualism.

As to Jewry, I no more believe in Jewish conspiracy theories than I believe in the man in the moon. I will leave such beliefs to the simple-minded of both political extremes. I am and always have been, however, an unapologetic and unreserved supporter of Israel. But I hope nonetheless that I have the sort of balanced view of the Jews that one should have of any group -- seeing both strengths and weaknesses. I think that Jews in general are a remarkable and admirable people but I do not think that they are right about everything and I think that their historic collectivist doctrine that they are a "chosen people" has been both a blessing and a curse to them.

And insofar as Christians have adopted such �groupthink� it has been a dubious influence among them too. Fortunately, St. Paul (a Jew) initially set Christianity on a much more inclusive path than that adopted by Jews before him so group consciousness has not had such good precedents among Christians. The way both Catholics and Protestants have engaged in persecution of those not of their faith does however show that religious groupthink is far from absent among Christians.

Interestingly, both modern Jews and ancient Jews have always been fractious and disunited so Jews could be an inspiration to those who OPPOSE collectivist thinking if we looked at what they did rather than what their religion preaches!

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