Friday, 28 February 2014

Friday Morning Ramble: The McCarten Edition

If Matt McCarten’s organisational genius is overrated, his easy identification of a phony is not. And this is on the money in any language, “"Everyone talks about the centre ground as if it actually exists. The policies are actually what wins an election.  There's a million New Zealanders who didn't vote last [election] or didn't bother to enrol, they're disengaged in the political process at the moment, and they've got to do it."” Would that some other parties (ahem) understand that. [Pic from Whale Oil, who reckons: “The Chief of Staff title fools no one…we all know that Labour are flat broke, and this is the only way to fund a full time campaign manager. It is the pledge card fiasco all over again,” and who links to Chris Trotter, who reckons this election could be the one when “all that is worth fighting for on the Left will go down to defeat .. for the foreseeable future.” Fingers crossed, eh.]

Topical Message for the Week:

"Achieving life is not the equivalent of avoiding
death. Joy is not the absence of pain."
- Ayn Rand

Australia's Next Top Model Finale Photo CallWe need to find meaning in the news of tragedy. As humans, we must.
     The search for meaning  in Charlotte Dawson’s suicide has reached Britain, with contributions from Julie Burchill -- “If you're tough enough, there's nothing more bracing than an online bitch-fight” – and Spiked’s Brendan O’Neill – “no sooner had it been revealed that Ms Dawson had died, most likely by her own hand, than these Torquemadas of the Twittersphere were insisting she was ‘killed by trolls’ and were ghoulishly marshalling her corpse to their campaign for tougher laws against offensive internet chatter.”
The joy of online hatred – Julie Burchill, SPECTATOR
Trollhunters are a menace to the internet – Brendan O’Neill, SPECTATOR

And the great Oliver Sacks, on an utterly unrelated topic…
The Joy of Old Age. (No Kidding.) – Oliver Sacks, NEW YORK TIMES

Mainstream media is finally, if belatedly, realising the Auckland Unitary Plan is a a disaster. (Message to mainstream journos reading this, Let me point you to some clients who can tell you stories…)
Aucklanders facing extra building consent fees - TVNZ

The news is now virtually mainstream, even as the effects (and their causes) get worse.
How cheap money and expensive Councils have affected affordability in Auckland and Wellington housing zones – David Chaston, INTEREST.CO.NZ

“I wish that Monster-Shouting didn't sell papers.” Or create policy.
Alcohol Healthwatch Is Making Stuff Up, Again – Eric Crampton, OFFSETTING BEHAVIOUR

If you enjoy trawling through Jamie Whyte’s online columns looking for arguments about incest, you’ll love trawling through his columns at the Cobden Centre looking for arguments about abolishing central banks…
Columns by Jamie Whyte – COBDEN CENTRE

Fair Go has started up again for another season. Former Fair Go presenter Brian Edwards speaks for its victims.
It’s time to even the odds for the victims of Fair Go – BRIAN EDWARDS MEDIA

Explain this: “Once one of the most open economies to FDI, New Zealand’s net foreign direct investment position has moved into negative territory between 1995 and 2012.” [Source, NZ INITIATIVE’s Graph of the Week]

Issue 3 2014 graph

Great news for “a Northern California couple out walking their dog on their property stumbled across a modern-day bonanza: $10 million in rare, mint-condition gold coins buried in the shadow of an old tree.”
Calif. couple strike $10 million gold-coin bonanza – CNBC

“This time around is not about looting, is not about kicking Chavez out, it is about a country that sees a devastating economic crisis ahead and the implied final loss of hope…”
The question here is who is most adrift in Venezuela today, the regime or the opposition? – VENEZUELA NEWS & VIEWS
The week Venezuela awoke to its ruin - VENEZUELA NEWS & VIEWS

“… the most effective public relations department on earth.”
The Truth About Che Guevara
Michael J. Totten, WORLD AFFAIRS

“Back at the negotiations in Vienna, observe who’s shaping the terms and tracing out  a red line.”
In nuclear talks, Iran turns the tables – Elan Journo, VOICES OF REASON

“Would you be willing to give up what Edward Snowden has given up? … Hopefully people will carefully consider what he has tried to share with the world.”
27 Edward Snowden Quotes About U.S. Government Spying That Should Send A Chill Up Your Spine – Buddy Huggins, THE BUDDDHA

“The proof is in the numbers: Australia is not being swamped by asylum seekers. Now is the time to put politics aside and work together to prevent more deaths.”
Why I'm calling for an end to offshore detention – Anna Burke, GUARDIAN [hat tip former-PM Malcolm Fraser]

Some people may still be moaning about the loss of Australia’s car making industry, but let’s get one thing clear. Hardly any Australians bought locally made cars.”
Australia Doesn’t Need Car Manufacturers, It Needs Innovators – Shae Smith, MONEY MORNING AUSTRALIA 

Former Australian Labor leader has been reading Ludwig Von Mises.  “The wonder of Australian car manufacturing is not that it’s closing down; it’s that governments wasted so much public money ($30 billion since 1998) on unsustainable jobs in an unsustainable industry.”
Mark Latham at his finest – CATALLAXY FILES

What Bob Hawke started, his successors tragically failed to finish.
Deregulation: past successes and failures; future bonfires? – Alan Moran, CATALLAXY FILES

“Videos showcasing the unsustainable nature of China’s construction-led economy are nothing new… Earlier this week, the BBC screened another video report (below) entitled How China fooled the world, showcasing why China’s economy could be in trouble, with its growth and epic construction drive built on ever-rising debt…”

“Patrick Moore, a Canadian ecologist who was a member of Greenpeace from 1971-86, told members of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee environmental groups like Greenpeace use faulty computer models and scare tactics in further promoting a political agenda,
Greenpeace co-founder says ‘no scientific proof’ humans cause climate change – WASHINGTON TIMES

“This is why I treat scientific claims about global warming with such skepticism: I would give them a lot more credence if I thought anyone was allowed to come up with a different answer. As I observed in the Mann vs. Steyn case, if it is a sin to doubt, then there is no science.”
The Original Sin of Global Warming – Robert Tracinski, THE FEDERALIST

“I can see how we are having trouble getting people to pay attention when half of America thinks that Astrology is scientific…”
Astrology as a Science – Steven Milloy, JUNK SCIENCE

“Growing up… I only learned one thing about fossil fuels: they were causing global warming… Oh, and one more thing: that this was a matter of scientific consensus.”
The Unscientific Consensus – Alex Epstein, FORBES

Warmist tries realism.
Energy Realism Amid Climate Alarmism: James Hansen Rides Again – MASTER RESOURCE

"Profit denotes the conservation, and
loss the waste, of scarce resources."

- Paul L. Poirot

“…it's not entirely clear why some people—mostly very rich clients—haven't picked up on this yet.”
Frank Gehry Is Still the World’s Worst Living Architect – GIZMODO

What happens when Gehry’s children spill their blocks…

Last few years of (anaemic)  US economic growth: Was it real? Or was it capital consumption?  “We as a nation are consuming our seed corn in great gulps, and there will be precious little left in a decade to pass down to the next generation…”
Eating Our Seed Corn: How Much Of Our "Growth" Is From One-Time Cashouts? – Charles Hugh-Smith, ZERO HEDGE

It’s not the end of the world. But is it the end of Bitcoin?
Bitcoin virtual currency is on verge of collapse – L.A. TIMES
Bitcoin has theory and history on its side – DETLEV SCHLICTER

“…when I say that the national debt cannot be paid off, it’s not a political forecast; it’s a statement on the flawed nature of the dollar.”
The U.S. National Debt Cannot Be Paid Off – KEITH WEINER ECONOMICS

“A central-bank induced boom cannot continue forever. The piper must be paid.”
The High Price of Delaying the Default – Thorstein Polleit, MISES DAILY

Yes, he’s back!
I am back! – An update. – DETLEV SCHLICTER

Cows don’t read Ricardo (see pic below).
Cows are incredible: They might just keep producing more milk forever – WASHINGTON POST


What did Keynes know? Ask Hayek: “He makes very strong claims that Keynes was blissfully ignorant of economic theory, monetary theory, economic history, and the history of economic thought

Turns out you can re-invent the wheel.
Israeli Company Reinvents The Wheel – Literally – NO CAMELS

rowlingIt can only be called envy-driven spite at excellence – the latest example.
Zero-sum economics? J. K. Rowling edition – STEPHEN HICKS

Could be anywhere in Grey Lynn? “The filthy, disorganized apartment shared by three members of the Amherst College Marxist Society is a microcosm of why the social and economic utopia described in the writings of Karl Marx will never come to fruition, sources reported Monday…
Marxists' Apartment A Microcosm Of Why Marxism Doesn't Work – THE ONION

“Not satisfied with on-going crusades against alcohol, cigarettes, sugar, and just about anything else that people derive enjoyment from, public-health officials have now turned their attention to the damaging effects of crime dramas.”
Psychiatrists go mad over Midsomer Murders – Ed Cottingham, SPIKED

houseofcardsIs there something terribly wrong with political insiders liking “a popular TV serial that grills them and shows them to be callow, avaricious, and without public spirit?” Yes, says former Reagan speechwriter Peggy Noonan.
The Irony of the Elite – HANNAH ARENDT CENTER

Or perhaps …
Gene Healy Says the Evil 'House of Cards' Characters Are Too Competent To Be Believable – HIT & RUN

“On the question of whether men desire more sex partners than women... well …” Gender myths and more debunked. (Or, the problems of static studies in a dynamic world.)
What We Know (That Isn't Necessarily So) About Sex – VILLANOUS COMPANY

“The philosophy behind compulsory education is that students need education in order to become responsible citizens. If some do not understand the value of an education, according to this way of thinking they should be made to see its value through time spent in the school system.”
Unlearning Individualism: The Lessons of Compulsory Education – Thomas Duke, THE UNDERCURRENT

Despite being zealously enforced, compulsory education policies cannot force students to learn

The problem for capitalist conservatives.
Ayn Rand And The Argument From Depravity – Don Watkins, LAISSEZ FAIRE

“Why feeling strapped for time leaves you blind to the future.”
How Always Being Busy Makes You Dumber – FAST COMPANY

“The brains of jazz musicians engrossed in spontaneous, improvisational musical conversation showed robust activation of brain areas traditionally associated with spoken language and syntax, which are used to interpret the structure of phrases and sentences. But this musical conversation shut down brain areas linked to semantics -- those that process the meaning of spoken language…”
The musical brain: Novel study of jazz players shows common brain circuitry processes both music, language – SCIENCE DAILY

Essential information for home-brewers and would be beer critics (note to self: “no banana in Pilsners, no banana in Pilsners…”
It's the Beer's Fault – BEER IQ

Thanks for reading
Have a great weekend!

[Hat tips Kiwiblog, On Liberty Street, Marginal Revolution, Small Dead Animals, Thinking Machine Blog, I Love Fossil Fuels, Sarah Reynolds, Fabrizio Goria, John Shepard, Screwed by State, Walter Russell Mead]

1 comment:

  1. The truth about Che Guevara ~ in "Mao: the unknown story" the biography by Jung Chang - she writes how Guevara accused Mao of being a piker; not going far enough with revolutionary zeal. Guevara would most strongly have approved of Pol Pot and the 1/4 population wipe out.
    {Greens also would like human mass destruction - but that is a non sequitur}

    Now that socialism has again been shown to not work; be a failure, in Venezuela this time - what country is upheld as exemplar. Like Albania was after USSR and China dismissed. (And Sweden shown to be grossly misleading)


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