Thursday, 14 April 2011

Open thread—and plenty to talk about

There's lots going on in the world right now—CERA, Syria, Libya, inflation, debt, Obama’s class war, Ayn Rand’s new film, Auckland’s Maori Statutory Board, NZ’s new copyright protection laws, French anti-burqa laws, secret bank bailouts, the nationalisation of lawyers, the end of property rights in Canterbury—and I'm sure you want to talk about it all and more.

Your topics—your points—your links. Make them and raise them now in the comments.

If you’re (un)lucky, I might join in myself.


  1. As a mind game I've whiled away some time recently contemplating being a juror for the trial of a person who had killed Brownlee.

    I think I would accept 'Sic semper tyrannis' as a defence as it is quite proper to kill tyrants.

    Society organized through elected representatives entails many slights against liberty from it's inception, but the wholesale abandonment of the rule of law by investing dictatorial power in Brownlee is something well beyond that.

  2. Opinion formation in a dynamical way (a toy model).

    Sociophysics and the Forming of Public Opinion: Threshold versus Non Threshold Dynamics

    There is some interesting models in this area that attempt to quantify how social issues are evolved/formed over time.

  3. Apparently the same author in the paper I cited in my previous message claimed in in there that his model predicted that George Bush would have won the election of 2004. The prediction was made prior to the election.

    #1) Heterogeneous beliefs, segregation, and extremism in the making of public opinions

    #2) Minority Opinion Spreading in Random Geometry

    The papers are readable & some of the points made are familiar to us in a day to day language, just avoid a few formula derivations then the general reader can enjoy them.

  4. @FF: Have you ever read of Isaac Asimov's fictional character Hari Seldon or his invention of psychohistory?

    Remind me to lend you one of Asimov's 'Foundation' series some time. I feel the meet-up would be beneficial. :-)

  5. The protection Canterbury residents have against Brownlee and the socialists is that they can leave and move almost anywhere else, and this is surely a real check on bad behaviour in the same way Federalism used to be a check on state and local government misbehaviour in the US. I would be surprised if Brownlee uses his power to prevent or even tax departure by residents. He could declare that anybody who leaves forfeits their property. That would be truly extraordinary, although I suppose it is conceivable it could happen if the stream out of Christchurch becomes a flood. If Brownlee is able to convince the public that flood out isn't the result of anything he did, then a tax or ban on departure might become be sold on the idea its in the interests of rebuilding, or something.

    It worries me why these radical provisions have to be in there at all (Crampton lists the most crazy today) if it is not intended that they be used.

  6. PC, you have an excellent article here from your Cue Cards Libertarianism - Rights which I've linked to in my comment at Kiwiblog this afternoon.

    A commenter there at Kiwiblog replied on that thread to me saying, that from a link on the same page of your article on Bill of Rights in the proposed Constitution for New Freeland (which I never checked out), state the followings:

    The Bill of Rights

    Article II – Right to Self-Defence Against the Initiation of Force or Fraud

    The right of an individual to preserve, protect and defend his life, liberty and property, or that of any other party subject to the initiation of public or private force or fraud, and to organise himself into private militia for these purposes, shall not be infringed.

    Article VII – No Compulsory Taxation

    The government shall extract no compulsory tax or involuntary contribution of any kind from any citizen for any purpose whatsoever.

    Article VIII – Free Trade, Investment and Migration

    The government shall make no law regulating commerce, investment or migration; but the government may regulate the immigration of any individual who has aided or given comfort to the enemy in any war or revolution respecting the establishment of the Constitution.

    Article X – Rights Held in Trust

    The age of independence shall be deemed by law, but the courts may deem an earlier age on application of the child, if the child can demonstrate its independence.

    Would you mind explaining the proposals above? Your Cue Card article on Rights was logical & insightful, however clicking on the supposed proposal for bill of rights looks nonsense to me. WHY? As the commentator at Kiwiblog, said in his reply to me, that he didn't know I was into anarchy.

    Lets be clear here. You're against private law enforcement or defense, but at the same time, no taxation proposed above for the New Freeland is no difference to different groups/tribes/individuals, etc,... running their own private armies or police forces since if law & order/ national defense can't be funded from taxation, then that's an invitation to anarchy.

  7. My previous comment disappeared into the thin air again.

  8. The protection Canterbury residents have against Brownlee and the socialists is that they can leave and move

    Would you consistently council surrender to assault to the attacked?

    Do you imagine if someone wanted property of yours you would agree to leave it to them without complaint?

    It worries me why these radical provisions have to be in there at all

    This abandonment of the rule of law angers such as I (and in NZ's past Iwi who had land taken from them in just this manner) because they don't have to be there at all.

  9. I am puzzled on how you think Canterbury residents can leave. If you have a big fat mortgage you can leave all you want but those repayments I presume need to continue.

    How can anyone build up a life elsewhere with such a burden to carry?

    Now I think of it, how would mortgage repayments work for property to which the government denies you access?

  10. I like to go to pub live band (excluding heavy metal - its ear damaging) and I love bands that have percussion. In modern day music, there is no drumming or percussion at all. Kids these days are talking about something called auto-tune, which is awful.

    Its amazing how kids these days love lady gaga and shit like that. I frequently tell kids that lady gaga is bullshit & fake. They better spend their time on youtube watching the michael jackson dance moves because they're more inspiring than watching lady gaga boring fake moves.

  11. $ BOND vigilantes in PBS News Thurs 14th (NZ time)The only decent web article I could find was a rejoinder by Bruce Krasting to an article by a Dean Baker "Let's just default"; quite scary if US continues with borrow and hope. Niall Fergusson in a his history of money had a chapter about bond markets being the ultimate sheriffs to government financial lunacy.

  12. Donald Trump is consider running against Obama and he's top in the GOP polling.

  13. So what? Are you a birther Miss Fisi? That would explain an awful lot.

    Jol Thang


1. Commenters are welcome and invited.
2. All comments are moderated. Off-topic grandstanding, spam, and gibberish will be ignored. Tu quoque will be moderated.
3. Read the post before you comment. Challenge facts, but don't simply ignore them.
4. Use a name. If it's important enough to say, it's important enough to put a name to.
5. Above all: Act with honour. Say what you mean, and mean what you say.