July 7, 2011

QotD: The United Nations has a master plan

Filed under: Economics, Environment, Government, Liberty, Quotations — Tags: , , , — Nicholas @ 13:13

What’s amazing about this stuff — and believe me, there’s plenty more where this came from — is the unblushing shamelessness with which it advocates this economic insanity. Here is the world’s most powerful intergovernmental institution essentially arguing for the destruction of the global economy, enforced rationing, Marxist wealth redistribution, greater regulation, the erosion of property rights and global governance by a new world order of technocrats and bureacrats. And being so upfront about it they actually issue press releases, telling us what they’re planning to do and encouraging us to write about it.

[. . .]

As economies grow richer, so they have more money to set aside for cleaner rivers, fresher air, as well as to invest in R & D projects for ever more eco-friendly forms of energy. It’s no coincidence that quite the worst environmental damage in the last century was done in those countries behind the Iron Curtain. Free market economies tend naturally to be cleaner and healthier because clean and healthy is what people choose anyway if they can afford it. They don’t need government to step in and take their money in order to spend it inefficiently trying to achieve something which would have happened quite naturally anyway.

What this ludicrous UN report is advocating is the exact opposite of what the world needs if it is to become genuinely greener. All those people in the developing world, if they’re to live healthier, less environmentally damaging lives the very last thing they need is hand-outs from richer economies. What they need is property rights and free trade and the chance to grow their economy to the point where — cf the Kuznets Curve — they can afford the luxury of having to breed fewer children and to heat and light their homes without having to chop down the nearest trees. What they also need for us in the rich West to have thriving economies in order that we can import more of their produce.

Rationing and limits to growth are not the answer. The UN is a menace and we listen to its eco-fascist ravings at our peril.

James Delingpole, “UN reveals its master plan for destruction of global economy”, The Telegraph, 2011-07-07

“Bodice-rippers” guilty of perverting women’s lives

Filed under: Books, Britain, Education, Health, Media — Tags: , , — Nicholas @ 13:00

Apparently, The Guardian thinks that women are weak-willed and easily (mis-)lead, especially when it comes to their sex lives:

Mills & Boon’s romance novels should come with a health warning, according to a report published in an academic journal.

Blaming romance novels for unprotected sex, unwanted pregnancies, unrealistic sexual expectations and relationship breakdowns, author and psychologist Susan Quilliam says that “what we see in our consulting rooms is more likely to be informed by Mills & Boon than by the Family Planning Association”, advising readers of the Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care that “sometimes the kindest and wisest thing we can do for our clients is to encourage them to put down the books — and pick up reality”.

Her comments follow a recent claim that romance novels can “dangerously unbalance” their readers, with Christian psychologist Dr Juli Slattery saying she was seeing “more and more women who are clinically addicted to romantic books”, and that “for many women, these novels really do promote dissatisfaction with their real relationships”.

Cartoon history of the global warming panic

The end of Canada’s combat deployment in Afghanistan

Filed under: Cancon, Military, USA — Tags: , — Nicholas @ 11:44

Matthew Fisher reports on the handover ceremony:

Canada’s first war in more than half a century ended at 11:18 a.m. local time Thursday, about 300 metres away from where the first Canadian combat troops set foot in Kandahar on Jan. 19, 2002.

The seventh and last Canadian to command Task Force Kandahar, Brig.-Gen. Dean Milner, signed over responsibility for Canada’s battle space to Col. Todd Wood of the 1st Stryker Combat Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, as NATO’s senior officer in the south, U.S. Army Maj.-Gen. James Terry, presided.

Milner repeatedly returned to the close friendships he had forged with Afghan security forces during a sometimes emotional address at the “transfer of authority” parade. In particular, he singled out his Afghan partner, Brig.-Gen. Ahmed Habibi for “leading from the front.”

British tabloids

Filed under: Britain, Liberty, Media, Politics — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 09:19

Brendan O’Neill views with some puzzlement the degree of outrage at the News of the World phone-hacking compared to earlier tabloid excesses:

Even some of those involved in the campaign recognise that there is a disparity between their earlier reaction to breaches of morality by tabloid newspapers and their reaction to this one. The campaigner who has successfully managed to get some big corporations to withdraw their advertising from the News of the World says she had previously learned to live with a ‘generalised, low-level irritation with the content of some of the tabloids’, yet following the Milly Dowler revelations those ‘years of irritation were transformed into rage’. Others have referred to the Dowler claims as ‘a tipping point’, arguing that we knew Murdoch’s tabloids were value-free and ethics-lite, but we didn’t know ‘they were this bad’.

In truth, there has been a distinct lack of journalistic integrity amongst some of the tabloids (and other media outlets) for many years now. For example, in 1988 the News of the World hounded the mentally ill EastEnders actor David Scarboro, not only revealing that he was in a psychiatric institution but also publishing photos of the institution and describing Scarboro as ‘mad’. Forced, under the glare of tabloid publicity, to flee the institution, Scarboro committed suicide by leaping off Beachy Head. He was just 20 years old. More famously, or rather infamously, the Sun libelled Liverpool football supporters following the Hillsborough disaster in 1989, falsely claiming that they had pickpocketed and urinated on dead and dying fans. There are many other instances over the past 30 years where the tabloids have used harassment and intimidation to get stories that have sometimes ruined people’s lives or denigrated the dead.

Yet none of those episodes gave rise to a widespread anti-tabloid campaign that galvanised prime ministers, opposition leaders, the respectable media, political activists and lawyers, as the Milly Dowler revelations have. Nor did they result in three-hour emergency debates in the House of Commons, with politicians battling it out to see who could express the most vociferous disdain for tabloid culture. The most striking thing about the anti-Murdoch campaign that has been so speedily consolidated over the past 48 hours is that it includes a smorgasbord of people who are normally at each other’s throats — from Conservative MPs to left-wing agitators, from big businesses such as William Hill and Coca-Cola (which are withdrawing their adverts from the News of the World) to religious spokespeople.

The Innocent Bystander’s Survival Guide

Filed under: Humour, Media, Randomness — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 09:05

You know that it’s bound to happen, especially if you’re a comic nerd or rabid anime fan. Be prepared to survive:

9. If an acquaintance of yours seems to disappear everytime the Hero puts in an appearance, rub some of those brain cells together and see what comes up.

[. . .]

11. If you are a news reporter, find a happy medium between the people’s right to know and your right to not get kidnapped/held hostage/etc.

12. Likewise, if you are a policeman, bank guard, or night watchman, and your first shot bounces off of the intruder’s chest, try shooting other areas of the intruder’s body, like their face, groin, etc. If this also fails, do not waste the rest of your ammo on him/her/it, or risk your neck in hand-to-hand combat; instead, fall back and observe.

[. . .]

21. If a Superhero takes up residence in your city, a nice spacious estate in the country will help you to actualize your potential lifespan.

22. If you are a security guard for a vast, powerful corporation, try to get assigned to the Marketing or Personnel departments, rather than R&D.

[. . .]

49. No matter how hooked you are on phonics, don’t try to pronounce things you find inscribed in ancient artifacts.

H/T to Nicholas Rosen for the link.

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