Thursday, January 09, 2003


The Guardian has the predictable sneering article on the tax cuts just put forward by President Bush. It is very incensed at the unfairness of cutting out double tax on company dividends. I wonder do they realize that double tax on company dividends was eliminated in Australia long ago by a LABOR (Leftist) government -- on the grounds of the obvious unfairness of double tax and the job-creating benefits of eliminating it?



I have always liked Jim Miller's blog. Here is another good entry:

Muslim Slavers raided Europe for slaves almost from the founding of Islam. And this continued far later than many realize. According to historian Robert Davis, "in the 250 years from 1580 more than a million Europeans were kidnapped for slavery or ransom". This article describes the finding of one of the raider's ships off Britain, and sketches some of the historical background. (The Guardian gives "University of Ohio" as Davis's academic affiliation. They probably mean Ohio University, which does have a historian by that name.)

The Muslim raiders often sailed as far north as Britain and Ireland, and, even, in one case, Iceland. We know about the Iceland raid from a captured Lutheran minister, who was later ransomed. (He felt insulted when his maid fetched a higher price in the slave market than he did.) So far as I know, there is not yet an organized effort to extract reparations on behalf of these slaves.



Tim Gillin wrote to me recently:

I just finished a beaut little book THE GREENHOUSE DELUSION : A CRITIQUE OF 'CLIMATE CHANGE 2001' by 80 year old Kiwi research scientist DR VINCENT GRAY. (copyright 2002). I had to purchase my copy on line from London.

As a survey methodologist you may enjoy some of his critique. For example, most of the world's temperature recording stations are in urban areas or in rural areas with street lighting, such zones only make up a couple of % of the earth's total surface area. These figures are extrapolated as 'global' in violation of sample theory. Naturally over time urban areas heat up as more people, more energy consumption etc has it's impact so "local" phenomena are interpreted as a "global trend". Similarly as more of the world's recording stations are updated to remote automatic monitoring from manual recording the figures will show a 'warming'. In the old days they used to have to open the door to get to the weather instruments to get the figures, so they were 'cooled' before recording .. compared to the new method!!!

David Wojick also has a very useful summary of Gray's work called A skeptic's guide to global warming: A new critique of the IPCC report on global warming reveals what's wrong with the science behind Kyoto



E. Spreitzer writes:

I just heard some Liberal Democrat Elitist (didn't get his name) on Cspan2
refer to all the American Flags waving in Americans' yards and from their
houses as "yard signs for President Bush".

My question - would this same Democrat Liberal Elitist upon seeing rows and
rows of white crosses in one of our Military Cemeteries refer to the crosses
as bumper stickers for the Conservatives??????

These Elitists have no shame - they will do ANYTHING and say ANYTHING to get
and keep power.



Here is a rather disgusting story from "Spiked" called "No more heroes" about the way the British Left is making a joke of the British honours system.

Since "Spiked" seems to be more offline than online these days, I have also posted the story here.



John Daley has published an absolutely scathing review of the way Canadian polar bears are said by the Greens to be dying out because of global warming. He shows that, on the Green's own figures, polar bears are stable in numbers and shows also that the now-reversing warming in Northern Canada is just part of a normal pattern of fluctuation.



A fabulous article on America-hating by Michael Gove in "The Times". It shows how deeply irrational such sentiments usually are.

The Wicked one says that Americanization is just modernization and that it is a good thing that the universities are going to pot.
He also has some new swear-words!

Michael Darby has a pleasant little story from a farmer taking his unusual Damara sheep to the local agricultural show.

IQ & PC has a VERY scholarly review of the evidence for the centrality and importance of IQ in people's lives. I know that many people think that Chris Brand and I are a bit over the top to talk about that but we are both psychometricians and know how strong the scientific evidence on the question is.


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