Saturday, 18 November 2006

Another Saturday morning ramble, 1.

At the end of every week I have notes about all sorts of things I wanted to write about but never got around to. Here's just a few of these (in no particular order) that you might want to ponder yourself:
  • Those pictures show Cardiff's Millenium Stadium, which (conditions underfoot aside) is perhaps the world's finest rugby stadium. And there seems to be a message there for Trevor Mallard, doesn't there? To paraphrase John Lydon, "This is Not a Bedpan."
  • The prosecution of Greg Carvell for shooting a machete-wielding intruder is igniting much-deserved outrage. Oswald Bastable rounds up blog comments on the matter. The Sensible Sentencing Trust says, "We have become a society that stands up for the rights of the criminal and we’ve trampled all over the rights of the law-abiding citizen. It’s despicable" -- and they're right. Libertarianz, as you might recall, said Carvell deserves a medal, not a charge sheet. Even former lawyer Richard Worth has a view on the matter, and as a former lawyer his view helps to encapsulate the case:
    On Thursday 27 July 2006, Ricky Beckham burst into the premises of Small Arms International in Penrose armed with a machete and allegedly said "give me the guns or I will kill you". Greg Carvell shot Beckham in the stomach at close range with a handgun. It seems a classic case of self-defence. The law is clear - you can use such force to defend yourself as is reasonable in the circumstances; up to and including deadly force.
    Rodney Hide, however? He has no view. None at all.
  • Rodney does have a view on property rights however. Like our friends in the Clark Government who, in their pursuit of a waterfront stadium are showing us what they really think about issues of moment -- in their case of the legal chains that bind us, and which they themselves wish to be free of -- in his otherwise laudable pursuit of the Carlaw Park option Rodney Hide shows how he really feels about property rights: "Mr Hide said he would support using the Public Works Act to confiscate private land at Carlaw Park." Can I hear a "Sheesh!" ? How about a "For fuck's sake!" ?
  • Did you know that Patrick McGoohan from The Prisoner and Diana Rigg from The Avengers have a Degree of Separation of 2? The Uni of Virginia have a 'Star Links' system that allows you to determine the degrees of separation of any film or TV performers. Try it out.
  • And speaking of John Lydon, Clint Heine has linked to a You Tube clip of Johnny Rotten (AKA Lydon) on censorship, which I imagine would be good ... if I could get the damn thing to load. See if you have more success than I have to date.
  • Karl Popper's defence of science is still sadly popular, and still so threadbare that as a defence it does everything science's attackers want. Sydney University's D.C Stove attacks Popper and four other "modern irrationalists," explaining how all their irrationalism about science became credible. I'm told it's very good, but as I haven't yet read it myself I can't say that first-hand. Let me know.
  • A Glossary of Free Speech is up at Bernard Darnton's FreeSpeech.Org.NZ site. Highly useful. Highly recommended.
More to come later this avo: Look for more 'Ramble' updates through the day -- and look out too for two posts I'm putting together on the Stadium debate: one showing what lessons the Sydney Opera House competition, architecture and construction has for the Waterfront Stadium, and another looking again at Carlaw Park.

RELATED: Stadium, Property Rights, Politics-ACT, Politics-NZ, Self-Defence, Films, Free Speech, Science, Philosophy


  1. Corporate Auckland can see past partisan hackery in the stadium debacle. Hubbard is looking to abrogate his responsibility, but still.

    Your constant quoting of National Party shill, the pseudonymous "Whale Oil" does your credibility no good at all in these circles my friend. You are better than that.

  2. C'mon PC, Rodney didn't really mean outright confiscation of properties using that act, when he said it. He does mean to compensate with above market price for owners of the suppose affected areas. There would be a few houses, perhaps not more than 10. The vast area needed for the stadium could come from the domain, which is publicly owned anyway.

  3. See that is why I recently said on this blog that Act and Rodney Hide don't really support property rights and the likes. Because they contradict such a claim in this way. The Public Works Act is a blatant breach of property rights and shouldn't be allowed to exist.

    Thanks for the link to the article. As big as it is I intend to read it soon.

  4. Falafulu, if he didn't mean outright confisication he didn't mean use of the Act at all, as that's what the Act is all about, even if "compensation" is given. To take someone's land against their will, or without even asking for it, is always theft, no matter how much compensation you offer them. Besides you can't get degrees of confiscation. It's either outright or not at all.

    Besides it doesn't matter who you steal if from it's still wrong. For the government to steal from local government is just as wrong as for them to steal from you or me.


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