Saturday, August 27, 2005

More stupidity

Another reason in this morning's Herald to separate School and State.
All student teachers will have to prove they can pronounce Maori in order to graduate, under Labour's Maori policy launched yesterday...Dr John Langley, dean of the education faculty at the University of Auckland, said he believed all children should be taught Maori in schools and this would be the first step towards achieving that. "I'm sure it would put people off [becoming teachers] but progress is not made on the basis of public opinion."
'Progress' for people such as this is apparently made by imposing one's values upon impressionable children in the State's factory schools. Time to take back the schools from the self-anointed elite.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Taking the P.I.S.S.

Speakeasy takes the P.I.S.S. this morning.
Why don't you join them outside for a puff?

Peace through appeasement

Will Israel's withdrawal from Gaza lead to peace, prosperity and lashings of milk and honey all round? Not on your life, says the Ayn Rand Institute:
The Gaza withdrawal is a deadly act of appeasement toward Israel’s committed enemies: the Palestinian Authority (PA), its rabidly anti-Semitic Palestinian supporters, and other Arab regimes throughout the Middle East. It will only increase their hope and ability to achieve their long-standing goal: the obliteration of Israel.
You'd think the appeasers would have learned from their poster-boy Neville Chamberlain. Peace in Our Time? Not a chance. Not like this. Rewarding aggressors only invites more of the same; a lesson that has to be learned again in each succeeding generation.

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Why is oil so gosh-darned expensive?

Common sense on the 'oil crisis' from Thomas Sowell:

Why, then, are oil prices so high? There is no esoteric reason. It is plain old supply and demand. With the economies of huge nations like China and India developing more rapidly, now that they have freed their markets from many stifling government controls, more oil is being demanded in the world market and there are few new sources of supply. What should our government do? We will be lucky if they do nothing....
Sadly, "nothing" is what they never do. "Nothing" would have been good.

Today production is being held back, not by price controls, but by political hysteria whenever anyone suggests actually producing more oil ourselves. Organized nature cults go ballistic at the thought that we might drill for oil in some remote part of Alaska that 99 percent of Americans will never see, including 99 percent of the nature cultists.
People used to ask whether there is any sound if a tree falls in an empty forest. Today, there are deafening political sounds over oil-drilling in an empty wilderness. Nor can we drill for oil offshore, or in many places on land, again for political reasons. Nor can we build enough refineries or even build hydroelectric dams as alternative sources of power.

The problem is not for government to solve, except as always by getting the hell out of the way. Sadly, and again as always, don't expect that to happen any time soon. Pierre Lemieux makes the same point here with more graphs and figures, and takes the long view on the recent price hikes.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Fraudulent Spice



Scary, Posh, Thingy and Baby Spice to the left. Fraudulent Spice to the right.

Sisters are doin' it for themselves apparently.

New blogs

The New Zealand blogosphere presently rejoices in both Frog Blog, and Prog Blog, the former the official Green Party blog espousing authoritarian environmentalism, the latter the official Jim-Anderton-kissed-my-baby blog.

Other party blogs, official and unofficial, are not as snappily named as these two, which some have seen as a missed opportunity. Until now. Some exciting new blogs have recently taken up the nomenclatural baton adopted by the two blogs of the authoritarian left:

Wog Blog: Run by a NZ First lackey to tell success stories of immigrants returning to their home country.

Flog Blog: A Christian Heritage Party blog telling stories of how different moral crimes can be fixed with judicious lashings of corporal punishment.

Clog Blog: A blog chock-full of thigh-slapping Dutch jokes and humour. Run by Harry Duynhoven.

Dog Blog: Regularly updated to highlight some of the beautiful women in the Labour Caucus, before they're airbrushed.

Hog Blog: Gerry Brownlee's diet blog. (Irregularly updated.)

Jog Blog: Bill English's exercise blog.

Log Blog: Blog run by the Ranfurly Shield holders.

Bog Blog: A blog discussing failed Private Members Bills before they're finally flushed down the toilet of history. Occasionally of an evening posts examples of post-modern art.

Nig Nog Blog: Paul Holmes's blog paying homage "to Koffi Annan and other cheeky darkies."

Fog Blog: Wet, thick and concealing -- David Benson-Pope's regular online confessions.

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Wednesday, August 24, 2005

That old green-eyed envy tax

Guest commentary today on Labour's Envy Taxes:

Why do so many bleat so much when 'the rich' receive a pledge to get some of their own money back, and why do those same people bleat so little (or even crow a lot) when someone else pledges to keep taking a lot from everyone with one hand, while doling out the booty as benefits with the other hand.

And why do so many still misinterpret or misunderstand the difference between getting back money that they earned and was taken from them, from money that they never earned that is being given to them?

Anna at ECB explains quite clearly that tax cuts benefit those who pay tax, and if you pay a lot of tax then of course a tax-cut will give you more in dollars than it would for someone who doesn't pay a lot. "Why is this so difficult to understand?" she asks. "Why is it that people think they are entitled to a greater share of other people's money?"

Answer in one word: Envy. It's a killer. If envy was taxed we'd all be able to vote ourselves rich.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Transmission

Sorry folks, blog-very-lite at present; got a few things to deal with. Normal transmission will be resumed ASAP.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Site Poll: Who gives a shit about 'nuclear free'?

As Nick Smith is far and away the most odious politician in the former parliament, for reasons canvassed here numerous times (here's one such time) and as evidenced by the very scientific poll result below, I've added a new poll now to see whether any of you really give a shit about New Zealand being nuclear free. Helen thinks you do. Don is too scared to say otherwise (in public). But do you really give a shit? Or would you rather see some sense applied to the subject? Vote now!

Results of the Previous Poll: Who is the Most odious politician in the present parliament?
Nick Smith, Brat Pack 74 votes
Michael Cullen, Hard Labour 69 votes
Keith Locke, Watermelon 60 votes
Trevor Mallard, Hard Labour 57 votes
Muriel Newman, Association of Compulsion Touters 34 votes
Tony Ryall, Brat Pack 29 votes
Other 10 votes
I love them all 3 votes

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Helengrad Libz giving it some

Luke Howison sent me these photos to show what the Wellington Libz have been up to:

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Isle of the Dead

'Isle of the Dead,' Arnold Boecklin

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Lange: A reprise

As Lange's death was the news that dominated the week, and as I've been asked many times about my views on his passing, I'm re-posting a link to what I wrote a week ago: The Enigma That Was Lange.

Amidst a sea of sycophancy, to me it still reads well a week after writing it.
All 100 NZ political bloggers have offered their own tributes to David Lange. For once I'm going to bow to pressure and do the traditional thing and offer some of my own memories. For me, Lange was a huge disappointment...
Read on here.

Related reading: What exactly took place under the Lange Government? What was the nature of the reforms, and were they as substantial as claimed both by their architects, and their oppononents. The best summation I've seen is Lindsay Perigo's speech for the 1996 Institute for Objectivist Studies Summer Seminar, In the Revolution's Twilight.
With reason and wit, Perigo summarizes New Zealand's market reforms, while countering some U.S. libertarians who believe these reforms represented a veritable revolution. Indeed, Perigo explains how the various reforms have ultimately failed — and describes the philosophical revolution it will take for liberty to succeed.

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