Wednesday, March 31, 2004


Australia's Left falls foul of teachers' unions: "Latham's policy that good teachers in bad schools be paid more is a good idea. It is recognition from the Labor Party that market forces apply in education as they do in all walks of life.... The great myth of education policy in this country is that non-government schools outperform government schools because government schools must teach any student that wishes to attend, while non-government schools have the privilege of choosing who they enrol. In fact, non-government schools achieve higher outcomes because they employ better teachers, and they are largely free from the dictates of state education departments and teachers unions.... the union of teachers in government schools, the Australian Education Union, is implacably opposed to merit pay and differential salaries because such measures require an assessment of the performance of individual teachers and their school... Latham can't have it both ways. He can't reform government schools and satisfy the teachers union."

Educational control freaks: "Although many teachers and principals officially tout the benefits of parental involvement, they become nervous when parents actually do get involved. They fear parents and seek to stop them from making choices about which schools their children will attend, about the curriculum used in their children's instruction, and about the punishments used in the schools."

Home schooling "A newer breed of home schooler is emerging, motivated not by religious belief or countercultural philosophy. Uppermost for such parents are concerns about violence, peer pressure, and poor academic quality in their schools."



Those delightful Muslims again: "A young boy, pleased that his dad shot his mum. Brothers who urge their father to shoot their sister. Girls as young as thirteen imprisoned by the state "for their own protection" from family members who want to rape or kill them. This is Jordan today, generally regarded one of the most westernised countries in the Middle East."

Europe likes to pretend that its Muslim problem is a by-product of their nominal alliance with the USA. But that ignores both history and demography: "Today, 15 million Muslims make their home in the European Union." Ultimately, Islam is a bigger problem for Europe than the USA.

Mark Steyn on appeasement: "a defensive war against terrorism will ensure terrorism."

A book review of Onward Muslim Soldiers, by Robert Spencer, points out that what Muslim "extremists" are doing is an integral part of Islam.

Christopher Hitchens says that many of the ideas of Islamic fundamentalism come from Western Fascists and other Leftists: "In many areas of German, Russian and French culture, one finds the same hatred of "decadence," the same cultish worship of the pitiless hero, the same fascination with the infallible "leader," the same fear of a mechanical civilization as opposed to the "organic" society based on tradition and allegiance".



California kookiness like Wow! "The law allows students and school staff to define their own gender, regardless of their biological sex, to prevent discrimination against transsexuals and others who do not conform to traditional gender roles". I guess Californian schoolgirls are going to love having weird guys turning up in their restrooms! If any of the girls are attacked, the legal fallout could be interesting!

"Sen. John F. Kerry has started talking about health care for the first time since securing his party's nomination for president. Americans should beware: Kerry's platform represents perhaps the greatest threat to health care and patient sovereignty since the Clinton health plan. Though Kerry claims he would reduce costs and expand access to medical care, his two-pronged health plan would have the opposite effects, for it would bring America several steps closer to a system of socialized medicine, with all the increased costs and rationing of care that follow."

An Icelandic blogger has a great collection of quotes (in English) showing how Leftist Nazism was.

A great article on the Indian love of cricket here. "seeing cricket as a way of pursuing diplomacy by other means" refers, of course, to a famous statement by Clausewitz. Cricket as an alternative to war sounds pretty good.

I have mentioned this academic article on IQ before (see here) but I think the abstract (summary) of it is worth reproducing in full: "Virtually all indicators of physical health and mental competence favor persons of higher socioeconomic status (SES). Conventional theories in the social sciences assume that the material disadvantages of lower SES are primarily responsible for these inequalities, either directly or by inducing psychosocial harm. These theories cannot explain, however, why the relation between SES and health outcomes (knowledge, behavior, morbidity, and mortality) is not only remarkably general across time, place, disease, and kind of health system but also so finely graded up the entire SES continuum. Epidemiologists have therefore posited, but not yet identified, a more general "fundamental cause" of health inequalities. This article concatenates various bodies of evidence to demonstrate that differences in general intelligence (g) may be that fundamental cause." (From the very mainstream journal: Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2004, Vol. 86, No. 1, 174-199)

The British government is gradually removing all mention of the Crown from its functions. Given Britain's lack of a written constitution, Peter Hitchens sees the move as a loss of important safeguards.

Today's recipe is for that classic Indian dish, Roghan Josh. It feeds 6 so is good for a discerning family or a dinner party. See here.


The Left have always wanted more spent on welfare and made "Fascism" a swear-word. President Bush deposed a brutal Fascist dictator and sponsored a big expansion of welfare. But instead of being admired by the Left, he is hated with a passion. What does that tell you about the Left? It tells you that they have no principles at all: That everything they have ever claimed to stand for is fake.

Three more examples of Leftist dishonesty: They blame the 9/11 attacks on "poverty" in the Islamic world. Yet most of the attackers were Saudis and Saudi Arabia is one of the world's richest countries! They also say that they oppose racism yet support "affirmative action" -- which judges people by the colour of their skin! They say that they care about "the poor" but how often do you hear them calling for the one thing that would bring about a worldwide economic boom in poor countries -- the USA and the EU abandoning their agricultural protectionism? Leftists obviously care more about conservative farmers than they do about the poor!

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