Friday, 11 May 2012

FRIDAY MORNING RAMBLE: It’s the ‘Gay Marriage’ edition

Big news of the week appears to be the issue that Dick Cheney and Joe Biden got to before Barack Obama: agreeing that same-sex marriage will not end civilisation as we know it. Or in Obama’s case: realising that same-sex marriage might be the only electoral issue on which he can separate himself and his 2012 Republican presidential opponent.
As such, it’s the first “real” salvo of the 2012 campaign.
One decision, many ripples – Steve Benen, M A D D O W   B L O G
Gays/Lesbians Should Not Fall for Barack's Gay Marriage B.S. – Michael Hurd,  D R   H U R D . C O M
MiSDiReCTioN... – Z E R O   H E D G E
Gary Johnson on Obama's Gay Marriage Remarks: "I guess the President is still more worried about losing Ohio, Colorado, North Carolina and Virginia than he is in doing the right thing" – R E A S O N
"It is good to see that after intense political pressure that President Obama has finally come around to the Dick Cheney position on marriage equality." -  R E A S O N
Gay 'Marriage' vs. 'Civil Unions': What's in a Name? – R E A S O N
Should same-sex marriage be legalized across the nation? – Tibor Machan, F R E E D O M  P O L I T I C S
President Obama Gets His Groove Back -  C A T O @ L I B E R T Y
Guest Post: Louisa Wall – Louisa Wall,  W H A L E   O I L
Major nz party leaders all support same sex marriage – David Farrar,  K I W I B L O G
When gay marriages are not being recognized it isn’t just that one is opposed to them 
– Tibor Machan, C L O V I S   N E W S   J O U R N A L

More important news this morning:
Survey shows porn habits start early -  N E W S T A L K   Z B

It’s odd there should any controversy about this: Of course people should take some responsibility for investing with schmucks.  And of course Brian Gaynor would disagree.
Missing the point on financial literacy – V I S I B L E   H A N D   I N  E C O N O M I C S

Government is the great fiction through which everybody
endeavours to live at the expense of everybody else.

               - Frédéric Bastiat

Q: Why does the entitlement state grow despite its obvious unaffordability? A: Because no one is willing to challenge the altruistic notion that we are our brother’s keeper. The only way to stop its growth is to reject this notion.
Why Making Altruism Voluntary Can’t End The Entitlement State – Don Watkins, L A I S S E Z   F A I R E

The latest concerted onslaught on the freedom of competition is licensing laws—laws “for your own good” that make goods and services less good, less available and more expensive. The American-based Institute for Justice summarises the he effects and requirements of licensing laws in all 50 states of the US.

TIME magazine has just given Ben Bernanke the kiss of death. They’ve put him on their cover.  (Be ready with your sick bag when you click the link.)
The men who caused the Great Recession  - P R A C T I C E   G O O D  T H E O R Y

Russ Roberts on Europe’s non-existent “austerity experiment”: “I’d like some facts. I have seen many articles on austerity. I can’t remember seeing any that suggest that government spending in any European country has actually fallen. Yes, there is talk of spending cuts or cuts in growth rates. But I’d like to see the data that shows the cuts have actually been implemented.
” How can a thoughtful journalist at a serious publication write that the Europeans have ‘carried out that experiment?’”
The austerity experiment – Russ Roberts,  C A F E  H A Y E K
Alternatives to austerity - Russ Roberts, C A F E    H A Y E K

Even mainstream economists aren’t impressed by government over-spending.
Robert Barro: Stimulus Spending Keeps Failing – W S J


He wasn’t just a beloved children’s author, you know. But here’s what happened when he wrote a book for adults…
Dr. Seuss's Little-Known Book of Nudes – A T L A N T I C

Australian Alan Moran says history suggests we have nothing to fear from China. “The implications of [China’s transition towards property rights and the rule of law] are that no longer will countries seize other countries’ resources. They, or their firms, can buy everything they want from willing sellers and such voluntary exchange has been central to achieving success. This respect for existing property rights means we have little reason to fear that the Chinese, if their march to world leadership is inevitable, will seek to project that leadership and use military means to impose unwanted economic outcomes.”
Which means we are at the end of history again?
End of History again – Alan Moran,  C A T A L L A X Y  F I L E S

“Bribery is made possible and necessary only by government interference in the marketplace.” Discuss, with reference to this case.
Don’t Blame Walmart for Bribery in Mexico – O B J E C T I V   S T A N D A R D

If this is Britain in 2020, is it NZ in 2025?
A Vision Of Future Britain? – D I C K  P U D D L E C O T E

The US is about to post a budget surplus you say? Come on, who are you kidding.
US Posts First Budget Surplus In 42 Months, And It Is Less Than Meets The Eye 
– Z E R O   H E D G E

Yes, they’re trying the same fiddles in the Australian budget. (Don’t think a struggling Bill English won’t be taking notes so he can try them all himself!)
The (Australian) Budget – C A T A L L A X Y  F I L E S

Should We Drop The Term “Capitalism”?

Interesting news for warmists relying on the argument from authority: more than 1000 dissenting scientists have now signed a report challenging man-made global warming claims made by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) -- almost 20 times the number of UN scientists who authored the media-hyped IPCC 2007 Summary for Policymakers. Time for independent thinking, you think?
More Than 1000 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims 
- C L I M A T E   D E P O T

Man cannot exist without some form of philosophy, i.e., some comprehensive
view of life. Most men are not intellectual innovators, but they are receptive
to ideas, are able to judge them critically and to choose the right course, when
and if it is offered. There are also a great many men who are indifferent to
ideas and to anything beyond the concrete-bound range of the immediate
moment; such men accept subconsciously whatever is offered by the culture
of their time, and swing blindly with any chance current. They are merely social
ballast—be they day laborers or company presidents—and, by their own
choice, irrelevant to the fate of the world.
          - Ayn Rand, “What Can One Do?” in Philosophy: Who Needs It

Obama’s election campaign started with a flip flop on gay marriage, and was continued by the release a cartoon-based eulogy to cradle-to-grave government programmes and what they will do for a “composite” woman called “Julia.” The Iowahawk couldn’t help himself, however, and had to make a few changes…
Julia's Circle of Life: The continuing adventures of Barack Obama's favorite eyeless, mouthless government dependent – I O W A H A W K
Who the hell is "Julia," and why am I paying for her whole life? -   David Harsanyi, H U M A N  E V E N T S

Mitt Romney is “down wiv da kidz?” Uh, maybe not.
Mitt Romney Completely Misreads the Hopes and Dreams of Youth Voters
– Patrick Michaels,  F O R B E S

No, no, no, not that Julia – not our next-door neighbour’s PM. Mind you, her “composite cabinet” is a piece of work!

A group of concerned citizens is taking on the fight against fake pharmaceuticals. Is it a group of government bureaucrats? No, silly, it’s a group of entrepreneurs.
How entrepreneurs are leading the fight against fake pharmaceuticals  - A . E . I .

I’ll give you three guesses why you never heard about Steve Jobs’ Willy Wonka routine.
Steve Jobs, Willy Wonka, and Good Reason for a Torrent of Expletives – O B J E C T I V E  S T A N D A R D

Is Apple exploiting Chinese workers?

A question every youngster needs to ask and answer at some point in their lives:
What does one owe one’s parents? – A P P L Y I N G   P H I L O S O P H Y   T O   L I F E

A few tips here on how to develop your own Bullshit Detector.  Basic tip, tread cleanly and keep your shoes clean…
Tread Cleanly! -  G U S   V A N  H O R N

Did I just see another batch of graduates undergoing capping? Here’s some advice.
'Don't Go To Law School,' 'Move To Asia,' And 28 Other Pearls Of Wisdom For 2012 Grads -  F O R B E S

And if you’re staying on in academia, these are the degrees you should have taken.
World class delusions  – Eric Crampton,  O F F S E T T I N G   B E H A V I O U R

imageNow for the really important news: techie-friendly seating so you can cuddle up better with your tablet.
21st-Century Reading Chairs – W S J

It’s true:
25 YouTube Comments That Are Actually Funny – B U Z Z F E E D

This looks like a free event to bookmark for the weekend: A presentation by Barbara Arrowsmith on her Canadian Arrowsmith Program, founded on the philosophy that it is possible to treat learning disabilities by identifying and strengthening cognitive capacities.  If only someone could tell her how the Montessori system could underpin her work…
Helping Children with Learning Disabilities: Saturday 12 May, 10.00am - 11.00am – T H E  E D G E
The Woman who Changed her Brain: Sunday 13 May, 4.00pm - 5.00pm – T H E   E D G E
Interview [audio] – R A D I O   N E W   Z EA L A N D

And finally, if you haven’t yet been up Auckland’s North-Western motorway to the Hallertau brewery, you really haven’t lived.
NZ Craft Beer TV – Hallertau. Awesome. - B E E R   R E V O L U T I O N

Cheers, and thanks for reading
Peter Cresswell

[Hat tips and thank yous to Don Watkins, Yaron Brook, Maria Montessori Education Foundation, Practice Good Theory, Eric Crampton, Geek Press)

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