Why Obama waffles so much

A small but pointed excerpt from "One Cosmos":

The other day, I heard a brilliant analysis of Obama by Rush Limbaugh. He was pointing out that the reason he is reduced to such a stuttering prick (to quote Tommy DeVito) when off the teleprompter, is that he is a deeply divided person, either consciously or unconsciously (and undoubtedly both, in my opinion). He is the polar opposite of, say, Ronald Reagan, who always knew what he thought and could answer any question, for it was simply a matter of returning to first principles and applying them to the problem. Very scientific, if you will.

But one of the intrinsic problems in being a liberal is that you can never reveal your first principles, because if you explicitly articulate them, people will be repelled at what a contemptuous and supercilious asshat you are. Therefore, you must always couch them in terms of "compassion," or "helping the little guy," or "healing the planet," or "unity," or some other such blather. So in that regard, Obama is dealing with a more general problem that is intrinsic to liberalism, which is How to Fool the Idiots. One must be very cautious, because even the idiots are only so stupid. Thus Obama's constant verbal ticks: "uh, uh, uh, let me, uh, say this, uh, uh, I've been completely, uh, consistent about this, blah blah blah."

Being that liberalism is the political embodiment of multiplicity (or of an oppressive "bad unity" to try to heal it), it should not be surprising that its adherents are so intrinsically inconsistent. It's not so much that they are dishonest, but that the whole ideology is dishonest -- it is a lie from the ground up. Which is also why, the worse your character (or the less your intelligence), the better you will fare as a liberal politician, because you will be able to lie with great ease and even fool yourself.

Anyway, in Rush's analysis, he was pointing out that Obama is running several campaigns simultaneously, and that it is obviously a struggle for him to keep them all straight in his head, thus the great difficulty in being consistent and giving straight answers. Because of this, he is always one gaffe away from a major meltdown. For example, he's running one campaign for blacks, but an entirely different one for whites. (I won't even review the whole list, because it would take too much time, and I've already made my point; here is a list of the various irreconcilable positions which Obama must hopelessly try keep straight in his mind.)


Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

Is John McCain Stupid?

On Sunday, he said on national television that to solve Social Security "everything's on the table," which of course means raising payroll taxes. On July 7 in Denver he said: "Senator Obama will raise your taxes. I won't." This isn't a flip-flop. It's a sex-change operation.

He got back to the subject Tuesday in Reno, Nev. Reporters asked about the Sunday tax comments. Mr. McCain replied, "The worst thing you could do is raise people's payroll taxes, my God!" Then he was asked about working with Democrats to fix Social Security, and he repeated, "everything has to be on the table." But how can . . .? Oh never mind.

The one thing -- arguably the only thing -- the McCain candidacy has going for it is a sense among voters that they don't know what Barack Obama stands for or believes. Why then would Mr. McCain give voters reason to wonder the same thing about himself? You're supposed to sow doubt about the other guy, not do it to yourself.

Yes, Sen. McCain must somehow appeal to independents and blue-collar Hillary Democrats. A degree of pandering to the center is inevitable. But this stuff isn't pandering; it's simply stupid. Al Gore's own climate allies separated themselves from his preposterous free-of-oil-in-10-years whopper. Sen. McCain saying off-handedly that it's "doable" is, in a word, thoughtless.

Speaker Pelosi heads a House with a 9% approval. To let her off the hook before the election reflects similar loss of thought.

The forces arrayed against Sen. McCain's candidacy are formidable: an unpopular president, the near impossibility of extending Republican White House rule for three terms, the GOP trailing in races at every level, a listless fundraising base, doubtful sentiments about the war, a flailing economy.

The generic Democratic presidential candidate should win handily. Barack Obama, though vulnerable at the margin, is a very strong candidate. This will be a turnout election. To win, Mr. McCain needs every Republican vote he can hold.

Why make it harder than it has to be? Given such statements on Social Security taxes, Al Gore and the "inspirational" Speaker Pelosi, is there a reason why Rush Limbaugh should not spend August teeing off on Mr. McCain?

Why as well shouldn't the Obama camp exploit all of this? If Sen. Obama's "inexperience" is Mr. McCain's ace in the hole, why not trump that by asking, "Does Sen. McCain know his own mind?"

In this sports-crazed country, everyone has learned a lot about what it takes to win. They've heard and seen it proven repeatedly that to achieve greatness, to win the big one, an athlete has to be ready to "put in the work." John McCain isn't doing that, yet. He's competing as if he expects the other side to lose it for him. Sen. McCain is a famously undisciplined politician. Someone in the McCain circle had better do some straight talking to the candidate. He's not some 19-year-old tennis player who's going to win the U.S. presidential Open on raw talent and the other guy's errors. He's not that good.

There is a reason the American people the past 100 years elevated only two sitting senators into the White House -- JFK and Warren Harding. It's because they believe most senators, adept at compulsive compromise, have no political compass and will sell them out. Now voters have to do what they prefer not to. Yes, Sen. McCain has honor and country. Another month of illogical, impolitic remarks and Sen. McCain will erase even that. Absent a coherent message for voters, he will be one-on-one with Barack Obama in the fall. He will lose.


And if you want CERTAINTY that McCain has lost his marbles, read this. It is too painful for me to reproduce

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH


The Australian - COMMUNIST officials have outraged the International Olympic Committee and the world's media by barring unfettered access to the internet - reneging on a key pre-Games promise to open China's doors to the world. Having already restricted access to Tiananmen Square during the Games, which begin in eight days, China yesterday brazenly defied the IOC and admitted it would censor the internet. International media were yesterday unable to access websites connected to the Falun Gong, Amnesty International or the Tiananmen Square massacre.

IHT - The official came for Yu Tingyun in his village one evening last week. While clutching a contract and a pen, he asked Yu to get into his car. Yu's daughter had died in a cascade of concrete and bricks, one of at least 240 students at a high school in Hanwang who lost their lives in the May 12 earthquake. He became a leader of grieving parents demanding to know if that school, like so many others, had crumbled because of poor construction. The contract had been thrust in Yu's face during a long interrogation by the police the previous day. In exchange for his silence, and for acknowledging that the ruling Communist Party had "mobilized society to help us," he would get a cash payment and a pension.

Japan thanks to America and Capitalism

FOX News - Officials say an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.8 struck off the northern Japanese coast, injuring nearly 100 people. The quake also triggered landslides and caused a blackout at more than 8,000 homes. The Meteorological Agency says there was no danger of a tsunami, or seismic waves, from the 12:26 a.m. Thursday (11:26 a.m. Wednesday EDT) quake, which occurred at a depth of about 65 miles near the coast of Iwate, 280 miles northeast of Tokyo. Japan is one of the world's most earthquake-prone countries. "We must grasp the extent of damage as quickly as possible so that we can immediately take necessary steps," Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda told reporters.

McDonald's is digging in its heels in support of homosexuality

As I pointed out a couple of weeks ago, McDonalds USA has this year gone political. They have been leaning over backwards to support the homosexual agenda -- homosexual marriage etc. Christian groups have objected to that and called for a boycott of McDonald's -- but McDonald's is unmoved:
"McDonald's, however, has been unapologetic about its pro-gay stance, asserting that organizers of the boycott are motivated by a hateful agenda against homosexuals. "Hatred has no place in our culture," McDonald's USA spokesman Bill Whitman told The Washington Post.


McDonald's can of course argue in favor of whatever they like but Christian groups can also then argue against McDonald's and ask Christian people to boycott them. Burger King must be rubbing their hands with glee.

But claiming that objections to homosexuality are "hate" rather than loyalty to Bible teachings is really going out on a limb. As a conservative commentator says:
"However, when McDonald's steps up to the mic to address the media, a veritable rainbow of true colors is revealed. While referring to customers with traditional family values, spokesman Bill Whitman regurgitated this little McNugget to the Washington Post: "Hatred has no place in our culture."

Nice job, Bill. I'm sure the hundreds of millions of customers you've just smacked down with this little insult are itchin' for a Happy Meal now.

Get it? If you happen to support the historical definition of marriage - which is, and has always been male-female - then you're a drooling, inbred hatemonger.


You would think McDonald's to be in too much trouble from the food freaks and obesity warriors to insult the majority of Middle America as well.

I rather hope that enough people feel insulted for it to show up in McDonald's bottom line. The executives responsible for this nonsense might then be fired.

The latest reports however are that McDonald's are not budging -- and neither are the Christian groups. As well as asking for a boycott, some groups are now picketing McDonald's branches.

I have always defended McDonald's from the food freaks who claim that McDonald's food is "unhealthy" but I think in future I will leave McDonald's to fight their own battles.

Predictably, the media are ignoring the Christian campaign. Claims that McDonald's food is unhealthy always get plenty of coverage, however.

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH


Conservative Australian cartoonist ZEG has just offered his take on the immigration reforms of the Rudd government.

Posted by John Ray.

Australia must not grow the crop that feeds most of the world??

Let's have swamps instead, apparently. Isn't it wonderful to have "experts" on the case? One reason for the much bemoaned low water levels in the Murray river is that large quantities of dam water have already been flushed down the Snowy and out to sea as "environmental" flows

Drought-hit Australia ["drought-hit"? Dam levels across Australia have been rising for the last year or so] must stop growing rice because it is too thirsty and uses 10 times as much water as other crops, an expert warns. Dr Eric Craswell, from the Australian National University, said rice should no longer be planted in the Murray-Darling Basin, and the water be allowed to flow through the river system to help the environment.

"People have said you shouldn't single out particular industries but I think in the case of rice there is an argument," he told AAP. "Instead of growing rice in the very wet years, let that water go down the river to rejuvenate the wetlands."

Dr Craswell - of ANU's Fenner School of Environment and Society - said most Australian rice was exported and questioned why the nation was growing rice for overseas markets when its own water was running so low. He said rice-growing should be left to countries with monsoonal climates like Thailand.

He pointed out that using a litre of water to grow vegetables or grapes produced 10 times as much revenue as using that water to grow rice. There has not been a significant rice crop in five years because of the drought. "The rice mills have been in mothballs for the last year," Dr Craswell said.

However Les Gordon, president of Ricegrowers' Association of Australia, said the commodity should continue to be grown because many countries were running out due to the world food shortage. "If we don't grow rice, you won't see rice on your supermarket shelves," Mr Gordon said.


Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

Dudd 08 - Open borders & Gaseous platitudes

The Australian - Immigration Minister Chris Evans will outline significant reforms to the system of mandatory detention today, extending the Labor Government's original pledge to remove all children from detention. Senator Evans is expected to announce the immigration policy changes during an address - New Directions in Detention: Restoring Integrity to Australia's Immigration System - at the Australian National University this morning. [snip] Senator Evans said today that under Labor's new policy detention, Immigration Detention Centres will only be used as a last resort and for the shortest practicable time. "A person who poses no danger to the community will be able to remain in the community while their visa status is resolved," Senator Evans said. "The department will have to justify why a person should be detained. Once in detention a detainee's case will be reviewed every three months to ensure that the further detention of the individual is justified. "Children will not be detained in an immigration detention centre." [snip] "Unauthorised boat arrivals at excised places will continue to be processed on Christmas Island but will now have access to legal assistance and an independent review of unfavourable decisions.”
What that really means is that if you sneak in here with your children, the wet-lettuce authorities won't detain your children and therefore how can you separate the parents from the children, breaking up families, genocide you heartless bastards! So I guess the whole family will be released into the community, naturally after promising to stay where they're supposed to stay. I don't know how Minister Evans will ensure these people won't just run and disappear once released into the community and I don't think he particularly cares. So the message to all really is, come to Australia by boat or some other means and just bring your kids, you won't be detained, we'll look after you. In the unlikely event that you're refused a visa to stay here, don't worry we'll arrange for you to appeal the decision repeatedly until you get what you want. All paid for by the suckers who came here legally and citizens going to work and back everyday. Let's see how all this is going to work out in the future, take the example of Britain, where they don't have mandatory detention and Labour/leftists are in charge.
Guardian [2005] - The UK is home to around 430,000 illegal immigrants, and possibly up to 570,000, according to a new government estimate published today. The Home Office issued figures estimating the size of the unauthorised migrant population for the first time, putting the figure at between 310,000 and 570,000. The figure does not include asylum seekers whose applications are being processed, or who are appealing against a refusal - a group put at between 716,000 and 772,000. [snip] The shadow home secretary, David Davis, called it a "shocking indictment of the total shambles that is Labour's immigration and asylum policy".

UK Immigration [2006] - Five illegal immigrants have been arrested after turning up for work to clean a British Home Office building. They were working for a firm contracted by the UK Immigration and Nationality Directorate's (IND) Becket House, in central London. [snip] Earlier this month, a director at the IND caused a row after saying he did not have the "faintest idea" how many illegal immigrants were in the UK. Britains Home Secretary John Reid, who has come under fire after also admitting he had no idea of how many illegal immigrants were in the UK, said the Home Office would not use the firm until it had better vetting procedures in place.

Metro [2007] - More than 6,600 illegal immigrants were given licences to work in the security industry in the recent scandal, Home Secretary Jacqui Smith revealed today. The Security Industry Authority (SIA) handed permits to a further 4,400 people who immigration officials now believe may not have the right to work in Britain, she told MPs. It makes a total of 11,100 who should not have slipped through the net and won their SIA licences.

Daily Express [2008] - POLICE admitted today that they are struggling to cope with an 800 per cent rise in crimes committed by Romanians. Police chiefs say the unprecedented rise in offences has left British forces swamped. [snip] A Daily Express investigation this week also revealed that a foreign national is arrested every four minutes on Britain’s streets.
Moving on from this to more bungling from the Dudd government, back during the election campaign PM Dudd was beating his frail chest promising that even though the Howard government was out of touch with petrol prices and everything else, he wasn't. We heard a lot of gaseous platitudes from PM Dudd about his Petrol commissioner, he was dubbed 'a cop on the beat' at the time. Let's have a look at what our federal treasurer said in early 2008, from his own website at the time.
We take cost of living pressures very seriously. That's why we've given the ACCC the power to supervise and monitor what's happening with petrol prices. That's why we're putting in place a petrol cop on the beat in the ACCC and if there has been untoward activity from petrol companies in recent days the ACCC will get to the bottom of it and throw the book at those responsible.
The way it was made out, this powerful petrol commissioner was going to beat the tripe out of the oil companies at the mere indication of profiteering or ripping us folks off, oh alright the exact words were that he would be throwing some sort of book at them. Anyway let's have a look at the fine work this petrol cop on the beat has been doing on our behalf, after all it's us who are paying for this paper-pusher.
Herald Sun - Prof Frank Zumbo, a specialist in competition policy, claimed yesterday ACCC Commissioner Pat Walker was "starting to sound like an apologist for the oil companies" after he defended delays in passing on cheaper prices. Mr Walker has no power to force oil companies to drop their prices in line with the Singapore benchmark and can only use public naming and shaming. The Singapore benchmark oil price fell by more than $20 a barrel this week, which is roughly equivalent to 20c a litre, Prof Zumbo said. When the Singapore benchmark price went up the price at the bowser went up immediately, but when the price came down there was a time lag, he said. "It is a notional number that we're pegged against so there can be no reason for the delay," the University of NSW business law professor said.
So in summary, this cop on the beat turns out to be an expensive waste of space, if we just fired this fellow, we'd actually be ahead because we wouldn't have to pay him. Heck if you put a monkey in his office and fed him bananas, it would still be cheaper and we'd have the same result that we're having now. But then PM Dudd wouldn't be able to pretend that he was doing something now would he. Just like the alcopops tax that was supposed to curb binge-drinking but ended up increasing alcohol consumption, most things with the Dudd government are about looking like they're doing something, while they're just chewing through our money and producing rubbish. And if you think this is bad enough folks, wait till the global warming emissions trading scheme kicks into gear and does absolutely nothing apart from gouge your wallet.

Cuil not so cool


Anna Patterson's last internet search engine was so impressive that industry leader Google bought the technology in 2004 to upgrade its own system. She believes her latest invention is even more valuable - only this time it's not for sale. Patterson instead intends to upstage Google, which she quit in 2006 to develop a more comprehensive and efficient way to scour the internet. The end result is Cuil, pronounced "cool." Backed by $US33 million ($A34.6 million) in venture capital, the search engine was set to begin processing requests for the first time today. Cuil had kept a low profile while Patterson, her husband, Tom Costello, and two other former Google engineers - Russell Power and Louis Monier - searched for better ways to search.

Now, it's boasting time. For starters, Cuil's search index spans 120 billion web pages. Patterson believes that is at least three times the size of Google's index, although there is no way to know for certain. Google stopped publicly quantifying its index's breadth nearly three years ago when the catalog spanned 8.2 billion web pages.

Cuil won't divulge the formula it has developed to cover a wider swath of the web with far fewer computers than Google. And Google isn't ceding the point: Spokeswoman Katie Watson said her company still believes its index is the largest.

More here

I tested cuil.com by doing a search on the topic I know most about: "John Ray". The results were crazy. I am always on the first page of a Google search but cuil.com just produced page after page of duplicated results about the 18th century English naturalist of the same name. Why they had to repeat the same result endlessly, I don't know. Try it for yourself and see what it does. A couple of other modern-day John Rays got a look in but they were on some occasions teamed with a picture of the 18th century guy. MUCH more work needed before this is a useful search tool -- JR

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

Obama finally gets something right

Reuters - The Miami woman's story illustrates a debate about whether black American parents take enough responsibility for raising their children that has spilled into the U.S. presidential campaign through comments by civil rights leader Jesse Jackson and Democratic candidate Barack Obama. It also sheds light on how complex factors including home foreclosures, lack of health insurance and high incarceration rates combine to put pressure on many inner-city families.
Hold on just a minute there Reuters, do you see the way they throw in the 'high incarceration rates' are putting pressure on families, it's like some sort of weather phenomenon putting pressure on a farmers ability to grow corn or illness or something. What nonsense! Last I checked, unless you're living in some sort of communist utopia you don't just get yanked off the street and 'incarcerated' for a few years. You have to commit some sort of crime that then incurs a punishment involving incarceration. Also contrary to leftist belief you actually have control over whether you commit the crime in the first place. You don't accidentally steal a car, rob a bank or rape someone. So you really are to blame if you end up incarcerated. Anyway back to Obama.
"No matter how many 10-point plans we propose or how many government programs we launch, none of it will make any difference if we don't seize more responsibility in our own lives," Obama, whose Kenyan father played little role in his life, said in a speech.
It's what we Conservatives have been banging on and on about for a while now. If blacks in America want to get out of poverty and keep their children out of it as well then the first step is to stop blaming everyone else. Foreclosures, health insurance, crime, the full moon, the wind at the north pole and the desert heat affects everyone all over the world. There are Asians, Africans, South Americans and all sorts of other people across this planet who've never heard of welfare, healthcare or in some cases education, some have never even owned a car or what we'd call a home, but they've made it in this world. People of all colors have to struggle, including blacks and they still make it.

Schwarto and Queensland police indifference to car theft

Rob Schwarten is a long-standing Labor party member of the Queensland parliament who has served in various ministries. He has a reputation for being aggressive -- even physically intimidating. So I was amused to receive from him a letter that was typically Schwarto -- a sort of verbal punch. Before I show you the letter, however, I need to tell you what led up to it:

In a nutshell: My car was stolen and the Queensland police showed not the slightest interest in apprehending the thief or thieves, despite the ID of one of them being handed to them on a plate.

More detail: Someone reported my abandoned car to the Redcliffe police about a week after it was stolen; the Redcliffe police checked their reports of stolen cars and notified me accordingly.

When I got the car back, most of the contents that I had in it were missing. This bothered me greatly as some of the contents were of considerable value to me. On checking through what remained, however, I found a library card belonging to someone I had never heard of. It was for a library in the Redcliffe area. It seemed clear to me that one of the thieves had inadvertently dropped it while they were in the car. Eureka! Just trace the person and I might get my stuff back!

So I took the card to my nearest cop-shop -- at Dutton Park. I was greeted at the counter by a dickless Tracy by the name of Turgeon. I told her my story, she listened and said she would look into it. I had no sooner stepped outside the building before I realized however that she had not taken a single note or asked for any details, let alone fill out a proper report.

I went back in and urged details upon her -- registration number, dates etc. She grabbed a torn-off scrap of paper and jotted a few things down. That was it. I left in great doubt about whether I had been taken seriously.

So I followed the matter up in the following weeks and months. In the course of that I was told two things by various police persons:

1). The card could have been dropped by anyone so was no proof of anything. Police logic, I presume. They seemed to think that I might have been driving around with people unknown to me in my car.

2). The person on the card had been checked and found to have no "form" (no criminal record) so there was no point in pursuing them. More police logic. How one ever gets form in the first place under those circumstances was never expained.

I was of course not remotely impressed by those pearls of wisdom but they came from more than one police officer, including a rather senior one. It stood out like dog's balls that the Queensland police were not remotely interested in catching car thieves -- unless of course you could catch them at the end of an exciting high-speed chase. No wonder Queensland has the highest rate of car theft in Australia. If you don't catch the baddies they will continue doing it.

So I started writing to the politicians in order to get some action. I got some very ill-considered replies from them too but it emerged that by that time the ID card had been "lost" and they could not therefore investigate the matter even if they wanted to.

That was quite appalling. There are of course strict police rules about the recording and preservation of material evidence and those regulations had obviously been ignored. It's not much of a guess to conclude that the Virgin Turgeon threw it straight into the bin, in fact.

I asked for disciplinary measures to be taken and Inspector Volk of Dutton Pk. station assured me that they had. For all I know that was just hot air, however. Clearly, Constable Turgeon had simply been following informal police rules.

I was rather stumped at that point but eventually made what was probably the only move left to me: Sue for compensation for my loss of car contents. I accordingly wrote to the Minister in charge of police with a claim for $500 in compensation for the loss of car contents that police negligence had prevented me from recovering. I got the usual ill-considered reply -- presumably written by a junior ministerial assistant. So I wrote again to point that out.

It was then that I got my amusing letter from Schwarto:
Judy Spence MP
Member for Mount Gravatt

Office of the
Minister for Police and
Corrective Services

Ref: 5627 F6 GM

23 May, 2008

Dear Dr Ray

Thank you for your further letter of 19 March 2008 concerning your dealings with police regarding the theft of your motor vehicle and property stolen from the vehicle.

I note you have received several replies from the Honourable Judy Spence MP since 2006 regarding associated issues.

While I have noted your further comments, as the Acting Minister for Police I am unable to intervene in any particular police investigation or operational decision, or interfere in the Police Service's handling of any particular complaint against its officers.

In the circumstances, your correspondence has been forwarded to the Police Service for consideration and you should take up direct with the Service on any further issues of concern.

Neither Ms Spence nor I am can assist you further in this matter and therefore do not intend corresponding with you in future on this issue.

Yours sincerely
Robert Schwarten MP
Acting Minister for Police, Corrective Services and Sport

He appears to think he can shut me up!

No further correspondence from the Police Service has arrived in the two months since Schwarto wrote so I suppose that an action against the Constable in the Small Claims tribunal will have to be my next step.

I have put this post and most of the letters I wrote on the matter up on a special blog called "Queensland Police Negligence". You will see there that I even wrote to the body that is supposed to act on complaints against the police but that they simply referred the complaint back to the police -- as they usually do.

What I would most like to see at this stage is a public enquiry resulting in visible disciplinary action against the police officers primarily responsible for the unofficial policy of not investigating car stealing.

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

Amongst Commies and Islamists, Sam needs all the allies he can get

Asia News - Last night, U.S. President George W. Bush telephoned Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh, to discuss implementing the agreement on nuclear energy for civilian purposes. The agreement has met with strong opposition in India, where it caused a crisis with the withdrawal of the communists from the government, forcing the prime minister to call for a confidence vote in parliament, which he won on July 22, amid difficulties and controversy. Now both sides want to move forward quickly: Bush must implement the agreement before his mandate ends in November, while in India there has been no letup in the opposition to nuclear energy, which Singh believes is necessary in order to obtain enough electricity for development in the country.
I have it on good authority that the Indian PM won the confidence vote comfortably, the way they make it out to be is like he won it by one vote or something. Oh and the Communist scum aren't as popular as people are led to believe. And yes, it was the communists agitating mainly, some good old America & human hatred going on there is all, the usual really. The main reason India was pushing this through is because of B. Hussein Obama, as most of us already know leftists in general have this phobia of anything nuclear. India was most worried about Obama who doesn't seem all that thrilled at the prospect, that's why they were so desperate to push this through before the coming elections in America.

What this basically would do is open India's civilian nuclear brickabrack up for the world to see, which is a good thing. You'd think that lefties would support this, but this would also mean India could progress further down the nuclear road and improve the supply of electricity to the people, which I believe helps to boost the quality of life, perhaps this is what grates the most with the left. Apparently this is being watched closely by Pakistan and China, which I think is a good thing. After all it's always good for Sam to have an ally in a region dominated by Islamic savages and Communists. Before you think that this might just antagonize the Communists, it would seem they're doing a bit of agitation of their own.
Asia News - Chinese incursions along the 4,057-km-long Sino-Indian border have increased in 2008. New Delhi has responded by re-building an airfield at 4,960 metres (16,200 feet) close to the border. The control of that part of Tibet under Indian rule but claimed by mainland China is at stake. [snip] In mid-June both sides said that their territorial dispute was resolved but in the first six months of the year China has carried out over 65 incursions into the Indian state of Sikkim. Sikkim itself is not at stake but many believe that China is putting pressure on India here in order to get Arunachal Pradesh, especially Tawang. Nestled in the eastern Himalayas at an altitude of 3,400 meters, Tawang is a critical corridor between Lhasa and the Brahmaputra Valley. It would give China the means to control the entire area. [snip] It is home to the second most important Tibetan monastery after the Potala Palace in Lhasa, a virtual treasure trove of Tibetan Buddhist religion and culture compared to the cultural genocide currently underway in Tibet. The area is also fertile and rich in minerals.

Not to leave the Islamic savages out - Authorities scoured a western Indian city Sunday for those responsible for a series of bombings that killed at least 45 people, detaining 30 people as a little-known group claimed responsibility for the attack. It was the second series of blasts in India in two days. "In the name of Allah the Indian Mujahedeen strike again! Do whatever you can, within 5 minutes from now, feel the terror of Death!" said an e-mail from the group sent to several Indian television stations minutes before the blasts began.
You know how China and Russia allow Iran, North Korea etc to remain thorns in America's side, by selling them arms and technology and hobbling us at the UN Security Council as examples, so I think it's high time the favor is returned with interest where possible.

McCain is a man of good character but no brains

"I believe there needs to be a thorough and complete investigation of speculators to find out whether speculation has been going on and, if so, how much it has affected the price of a barrel of oil. There's a lot of things out there that need a lot more transparency and, consequently, oversight." Those are the words of presidential candidate John McCain. This man is the Republican?

There's more: "I am very angry, frankly, at the oil companies not only because of the obscene profits they've made but at their failure to invest in alternate energy to help us eliminate our dependence on foreign oil. They're making huge profits and that happens, but not to say, 'We're in this so we can over time eliminate America's dependence on foreign oil,' I think is an abrogation of their responsibilities as citizens."

Let me get this straight. A potential president of a putatively free country scolds companies for "obscene profits," failure to invest in competing products, and therefore irresponsible citizenship. Why? Is McCain running for national economic commissar?

This is not the first time McCain has displayed what I would call an anti-capitalist mentality. In an early presidential debate he countered former businessman Mitt Romney's claim to superior executive experience by saying, "I led the largest squadron in the U.S. Navy, not for profit but for patriotism". Why the put down of profit? It's clear McCain does not understand how markets work or why they are good. He certainly doesn't understand the role of speculators and other middlemen. He's not alone. Speculators are among the most reviled people in history. When they were members of ethnic minorities, they have been easy targets for economically illiterate people who were jealous of their success.

McCain wonders "whether speculation has been going on." He needn't wonder. Speculation always goes on. Speculation means to take a risk on what the future holds in hopes of making a profit. The world's stock and commodities markets are based on this principle. Sen. McCain must have meant it when he said, "I know a lot less about economics than I do about military and foreign policy issues".


Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH


Drought said to threaten water supply of more than a million Australians

I guess this is why it rains nearly every day where I am -- even though winter is supposed to be the dry season. We've just had a shower as I write this, in fact. Dam levels throughout Australia are in fact rising. The only adverse thing happening is that too much water is being drawn off the Murray/Darling river system for long-term sustainability. In 1901 (Yes. 1901, not 2001) the Murray was just a chain of waterholes so it is very variable naturally. For a laugh, compare the report below with the one immediately following it

More than a million people in Australia could face drinking water shortages if the country's seven-year drought does not break soon, a government report has warned. The bleak report into the future of the Murray-Darling river system found the situation had become "critical".

The system, which runs from Queensland in the country's north east to Victoria in the south, irrigates Australia's vast food bowl and drinking water to more than a million people. However, due to rising temperatures and a desperate lack of rain, inflows to the basin are at their lowest ever recorded levels. Climate change minister Penny Wong yesterday said the Murray Darling was "in real trouble". "We've had very low inflows, we've had a very dry June and the focus absolutely has to be critical human needs, that is the needs of the million-plus people who rely on the basin for drinking water," she said. "It just reminds us, yet again, the way in which this country is particularly vulnerable to climate change."

Australia is in the grip of the worst drought in a century, with water restrictions in place in most major cities and a forecast for more dry weather. The report said the parched Murray-Darling system should provide enough drinking water until the middle of next year. But the document, compiled by senior federal and state government officials, warned there could be difficulties supplying drinking water after that if rains did not arrive. "Work is continuing on contingency planning in order to protect critical human needs for 2009-10 should inflows remain at or below record minimums through winter," it said. "Governments would also need to consider how they would set aside water early to protect critical human needs for 2009-10."

More than 40 per cent of Australia's food comes from the Murray-Darling Basin. It would take years of above-average rainfall to return water levels in the basin to normal, but "the long dry" is expected to continue. A recent report predicted a tenfold increase in the frequency of heat waves as climate change continues to push up temperatures on the continent.


Brisbane's dams fill as the chill bites

(Brisbane is Australia's third-largest city)

WATER kept flowing into Brisbane's dams yesterday as the Somerset reservoir hit 89.19 per cent - the most it has held in the last seven years. Continuing showers and strong southwesterly winds brought chilly conditions to the southeast and border regions, with a minimum of 7C and a top of just 16C predicted for Brisbane today.

Minimum temperatures were below average over most of the state. Cooktown in the far north plummeted to 12C, which was six below normal, while Nambour on the Sunshine Coast was 6C (3C below average) and the Gold Coast dipped to 7C (5C below average). Queensland's coldest recorded temperature was at Stanthorpe, where temperatures dropped to -3C.

Weather Bureau forecaster Bryan Rolstone said it was difficult to say whether the cold snap would force temperatures to record-breaking levels. "But we're expecting strong blustery winds, showers, sleet and a possibility of small hail in some places which sounds more like Victorian than Queensland weather," Mr Rolstone said. Brisbane's record maximum low was 10.6C in 1938. Stanthorpe's coldest July day was in 1984 when the temperature managed only a maximum of 2.9C.

Weatherzone meteorologist Matt Pearce said there was a prospect of snow down to 900m in NSW and in Queensland's border regions. Rain was expected to clear early in the southeast today, although there remained the possibility of showers and thunder.

The aggregate water level in Somerset, North Pine and the huge Wivenhoe Dam was 40.53 per cent yesterday after five days of scattered falls. Dam managers hope it might hit 41 per cent by the end of the week. As with previous good flows, most of the water has come from the Stanley River catchment, part of which rises in the wet Sunshine Coast hinterland. SEQWater spokesman Mike Foster said North Pine was on 35.42 per cent and Wivenhoe 25.61 per cent. "It's not bad given this time last year we were on an aggregate 16.5 per cent," Mr Foster said.


Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

So how's that Multiculturalism working out

Times Online - ALMOST a third of British Muslim students believe killing in the name of Islam can be justified, according to a poll. The study also found that two in five Muslims at university support the incorporation of Islamic sharia codes into British law. The YouGov poll for the Centre for Social Cohesion (CSC) will raise concerns about the extent of campus radicalism. “Significant numbers appear to hold beliefs which contravene democratic values,” said Han-nah Stuart, one of the report’s authors. “These results are deeply embarrassing for those who have said there is no extremism in British universities.”

The report was criticised by the country’s largest Muslim student body, Fosis, but Anthony Glees, professor of security and intelligence studies at Buckingham University, said: “The finding that a large number of students think it is okay to kill in the name of religion is alarming. “There is a wide cultural divide between Muslim and nonMuslim students. The solution is to stop talking about celebrating diversity and focus on integration and assimilation.” [snip] In addition to its poll of 1,400 Muslim and nonMuslim students, the centre visited more than 20 universities to interview students and listen to guest speakers. It found that extremist preachers regularly gave speeches that were inflammatory, homophobic or bordering on antisemitic.

The researchers highlighted Queen Mary college, part of London University, as a campus where radical views were widely held. Last December, a speaker named Abu Mujahid encouraged Muslim students to condemn gays because “Allah hates” homosexuality. In November, Azzam Tamimi, a British-based supporter of Hamas, described Israel as the most “inhumane project in the modern history of humanity”. James Brandon, deputy director at CSC , said: “Our researchers found a ghettoised mentality among Muslim students at Queen Mary. Also, we found the segregation between Muslim men and women at events more visible at Queen Mary.” A spokesman for Queen Mary said the university was aware the preachers had visited but did not know the contents of their speeches.

“Clearly, we in no way associate ourselves with these views. However, also integral to the spirit of university life is free speech and debate and on occasion speakers will make statements that are deemed offensive.” In the report, 40% of Muslim students said it was unacceptable for Muslim men and women to associate freely. Homophobia was rife, with 25% saying they had little or no respect for gays. The figure was higher (32%) for male Muslim students. Among nonMuslims, the figure was only 4%. The research found that a third of Muslim students supported the creation of a world-wide caliphate or Islamic state. Hat tip Woman Honor Thyself for the images.

MK - So according to Queen Mary college, free speech and debate means you have to endure offensive statements, excrement alert folks! So how about allowing someone from the BNP speak, how about allowing someone make a pro-America or pro-Israel or pro-Christianity speech then. I'm sure the free speech and debate will suddenly evaporate from "the spirit of university life" then. Multiculturalism, socialism and all that left-wing nonsense have been pushed by our universities for years and years. Conservatives have been ringing the alarm bells about all this but the Universities wouldn't listen. They knew better, it was just us savages who needed to get with the program and go along with their social engineering.

I got bad news folks, the lefties running these bastions of higher learning will not change their ways, they will push ahead with their stupidity no matter how many in their midst radicalize because these idiots are impervious to facts and reality. I'd love to say that it would just be them who will reap the bitter crop of their stupidity but it won't, it'll be us. If we let them continue, it'll be us getting blown up on buses and trains, it'll be us being strongly advised to attend the local mosque or perhaps move, it'll be our women who'll have to cover up or else. It'll be us who will have to accommodate or to paraphrase one Swedish politician, we'll have to be nice to them in the false hope that they'll be nice to us in return.

Remarks about anti-Americanism in Europe

The following was forwarded to me by a European reader -- pointing out that American political correctness has undermined European efforts to rein in third-world thuggery

Undoubtedly a strong anti-Americanism is prevalent in Europe. It is also true that this sentiment is mainly a kingdom of the left; at least, leftists are those who lead the street dance. However the roots of this sentiment are deeper than the apparent schizophrenia of these persons that bite the hand that has protected them from the communist takeover. In order to prove this assertion lets think of three words and an half: Suez, Algeria, Africa (and Falklands).

SUEZ. In 1956, Nasser the autocratic ruler of Egypt took over and closed the Suez Channel closing the naval route between Europe and Asia. Great Britain, France and Israel took a successful military action to reopen the Channel but the US had a preference for Arabs and other Third Word so called nationalists over Europeans. As a result the initial victory became a humiliating retreat.

ALGERIA. It was a French colony from 1830 until 1962. Anyway the French conquered Algeria in order to stop the continuous pirate actions of the Arabs in the Mediterranean and after the dey (local king) of Alger slapped the face of the French envoy. An independence war begun in 1954 and ended with the defeat of France; all the time the US pressed France to surrender.

AFRICA. All we know what a tragedy has became the retreat of the colonial powers. The last one to surrender was Portugal a small and the most western country of Europe. It sustained a war for 13 years in Angola, Mozambique and Guinea against the UN and all the usual people. How did this war begin in 1961? With a really nasty attack against white people - for instance opening the belly of pregnant women - in order to impose terror and force people to flight. And who paid for this initial terrorist actions? The US then under President Kennedy. What happened in Angola is more or less what happened in all the Black Africa: the expulsion of colonial powers followed by the ascension of very nasty rulers. But for the US the end of colonial rule in Africa was a strategic aim, no matter the consequences.

Falklands. Only by small chance the same "anti-colonialism" did not prevail in the Falklands; the ambassador Jane Kirkpatrick took the side of Argentina, only the President was a certain Reagan.

For decades the anti-colonialism of the US reduced European powers to world irrelevance and Africa is suffering its nasty rulers. Some of us can be rational and understand that our interests are with the US and that without the military power of the US civilization risks to be lost, like it has been the case between 1939 and 1989. But it should be understood that other people are not so rational.

It is now very common for American conservatives to condemn Europe for its failure to stand up for Western civilization. But the Europeans were doing that until quite recently -- when America stopped them. No wonder the Europeans have given up. So why did America do that? Because of misguided ideology. America's own racist past caused them to see as racism and "colonialism" what were perfectly reasonable actions by European countries -- JR

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

Zeg strikes again

Conservative Australian cartoonist ZEG has just offered a cynical take on arctic oil and alleged space visitors

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

America more like Europe?

CBS News - Cheered by an enormous international crowd, Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama on Thursday summoned Europeans and Americans together to "defeat terror and dry up the well of extremism that supports it" as surely as they conquered communism a generation ago. Obama said he was speaking as a citizen, not as a president, but the evening was awash in politics as the first-term U.S. senator sought to burnish his international credentials for the fall campaign at home. His remarks before a crowd estimated at more than 200,000 inevitably invited comparison to historic speeches in the same city by Presidents Kennedy and Reagan. [snip] "People of Berlin, people of the world, this is our moment. This is our time," he declared. "The walls between old allies on either side of the Atlantic cannot stand," Obama said, speaking not far from where the Berlin Wall once divided the city.

"The walls between the countries with the most and those with the least cannot stand. The walls between races and tribes, natives and immigrants, Christians and Muslims and Jews cannot stand," he said. [snip] Knots of bystanders waited along Obama's motorcade route for him to pass. One man yelled out in English, "Yes, we can," the senator's campaign refrain, when he emerged from his car to enter his hotel. For his speech, Obama drew loud applause as he strode confidently across a large podium erected at the base of the Victory Column in Tiergarten Park in the heart of Berlin. The crowd spilled away from the Column for blocks. [snip] He drew loud applause when he talked of a world without nuclear weapons and again when he called for steps to counter climate change. [snip] "Where the last war had ended, another World War could have easily begun," the presidential candidate said.
These massive crowds obviously yearn to make America more like Europe and they see Obama as the easiest way to do this. Perhaps it's beyond their capacity but you have to ask yourself if that's a good thing, America becoming like Europe? I don't think so because for one, what can Europe do? I mean they've got the EU and the Euro and supposedly it's all great and wonderful, but what can they do for the globe? America brought freedom from tyranny to Iraq and Afghanistan and scared the tripe out of Egypt and Libya. Can Europe do the same, if so why don't they do it? There are numerous countries around the world that are in the grip of tyrants, Burma, Zimbabwe, Sudan, North Korea, Tibet etc. It's all well and good to be holding hands, cheering, waving flags and chanting "Yes we can", but any fool can do that.

I read on another blog today that Libya had stopped its state-run oil tanker company from shipping oil to Switzerland because of the arrest of Muammar Qaddafi's son for assaulting two hotel staff. Remember when the Iranians captured British sailors and paraded them on national TV and Iranian savages were pelting the British embassy in Tehran with eggs, stones and everything else on a regular basis. Remember that British teacher who was jailed in Sudan for insulting Islam, remember the burning of the Danish embassies over the cartoon fiasco. These incidents are indications of Europe's weakness and impotence. In summary, if some third-world craphole decides to give Europe the diplomatic equivalent of 'screw you westerners, you can kiss my ass', what is Europe going to do.

On the evening news I saw a supporter in Germany who was ecstatic because Obama was like a global citizen. You got the strong impression that there is hope in Europe because of Obama, a hope that things would be better for the world if Obama got elected. We know the American left and the global left want America to become more like Europe, inferring that Europe is better. Let's assume for a moment that this is correct and that it's a good thing, let's also assume that Obama is a genuine fellow and can actually make the world a better place. But here is a contradiction, if Europe is better and Obama is better, why is it that only America could produce a Barack Obama? Why is it that post-modern, progressive, secular, socialist-leaning Europe cannot produce a Barack Obama to save the world, to unite us, to bring down the walls?

From my perspective, the rest of the globe should logically be rooting for a McCain or some other Republican, if nothing else for the sake of our own self interest. It makes sense to back someone who you know is more than prepared to use force and come to the defense of others in their time of need. If you think about it, who can stand up to a China or Russia if they decide to strong-arm an Australia or Netherlands. What about a nuclear Iran that develops long range missiles that can strike any European city. Obama can prattle on about one world, no walls and all that crap, but what makes you think he will take on a nuclear China or Iran when he doesn't have the balls to take on an insurgency using RPGs, IEDs and Suicide bombs in backwater Fallujah.

Obama's already said that he's going to scale the US military back, so even if he musters the will to stand up for you, his options thanks to his socialist leanings [which will bring America more in line with the rest of us like most are yearning for] are going to be limited. I remember a long time ago hearing some commentator saying that most of us would have to drastically increase our defense spending if we were to take on the responsibility of defending ourselves without America. So we'll either have to jack up taxes or let go of some of our taxpayer-funded schemes if we go down that route. Perhaps too many of us have been gulping too much koolaid and are now ignorant of this and need the real cost of security to burst our little utopian bubbles before we wake up.

Wikipedia versus "Knol"

I recently put up on Paralipomena an article about "Knol" -- the new Google alternative to Wikipedia. I imagine that most readers here are well aware that Wikipedia is totally unreliable on politically contentious matters. Anything opposed to Green/Left beliefs gets wiped rapidly -- sometimes within minutes. Try to find on Wikipedia anything much that argues against global warming if you don't believe me. Leftists have been devotees of political censorship ever since Napoleon. They just cannot afford to have people hear the whole story about their nonsense. And Wikpedia turns them loose.

One has to laugh at Wikipedia protestations of "neutrality". The bias is so bad that some people are predicting the demise of Wikipedia.

So an alternative that allows only the original author to delete stuff was badly needed. And Knol seems to meet that need. I thought therefore that I might help to get the ball rolling by putting up a few articles. The first one I put up is here.

I soon began to see the virtue of the Google approach. I have already received several steamed-up and ill-informed emails from a guy named Cyrus Robinson (cyrus.robinson@gimail.af.mil) who objects to what I have written. Clearly, if I had put the same stuff up on Wikipedia, he would have deleted it immediately. But on Knol he cannot.

It's ironical that the Leftists at Google are doing something that may help conservatives so I wonder how long that can last. Will Google start finding pretexts to delete conservative comments? Time will tell.

Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

The Great Global Warming Swindle vindicated

SMH [Miranda Devine] -Take the British Channel 4 documentary The Great Global Warming Swindle, which aired on the ABC last year with an extraordinary post-show panel of debunkers assembled to denounce it. The one program which actually questioned the consensus on man's contribution to climate change, it has been singled out for condemnation and forensic dissection in a way no other program has, least of all Al Gore's error-riddled An Inconvenient Truth.

This week, the British communications regulator, Ofcom, published a long report dealing with 265 complaints about perceived inaccuracy and unfairness in Swindle. Despite crowing from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the ABC and others, Ofcom does not vindicate Swindle's attackers. In fact, while it declared itself unable to adjudicate on the finer points of climate science, it found the program did not mislead audiences "so as to cause harm or offence".

Further, Ofcom defended the right of Channel 4 and the much-vilified producer Martin Durkin to "continue to explore controversial subject matter. While such programs can polarise opinion, they are essential to our understanding of the world around us and are amongst the most important content that broadcasters produce." Amen. Ofcom also noted: "Although the complainants disagreed with the points made by the contributors in the programme, they did not suggest that the overall statements about climate models were factually inaccurate."

The mere sight of a knife causes nation-wide panic and hysteria

Daily Mail - A judge stunned a court yesterday when he pulled a blade out of his pocket - while sitting on a knife crime case. Judge Roger Connor brandished his knife in front of a 16-year-old boy accused of wounding with intent and assault. The boy, who denies the charges, admits using a folding knife but claims he needed only one hand to open it. Judge Connor pulled out his blade at Oxford Crown Court, saying: 'I have a folding pocket knife in my pocket. You need two hands to open it don't you?'
Well judge, the boy may have a point, maybe your piece-of-crap knife might require both hands but most of these bad-boys don't. Well, apart from the fixed blade ones that is. They have this wave-feature so you can open the knife as you pull it out of your pocket. Having said that, if the knife is out of your pocket and closed, you still don't need both hands, you can even flick em' open.
John Simmons, for the boy, questioned whether carrying the knife in public was legal but the judge said it was as the blade was less than 3in long.
Yes it is, I remember reading about that a long time ago. So you Brits take note and act accordingly. Incidentally, Emerson Knives have the perfect one for any Brits looking to legally carry. I present the Emerson Mini CQC-7B [Blade Length - 2.9in.] and no, I don't have shares in the company or have any interests in them. I just have two of their knives and like them quite a lot.
However, furious anti-knife crime campaigners spoke out in horror yesterday and claimed the deputy circuit judge was setting the wrong example. Lyn Costello, the co-founder of the Mother's Against Murder and Aggression campaign group said that the judge should lose his job. She said: 'I'm absolutely sickened - I've never heard anything so disgraceful. He should lose his job. 'I will be writing to the Attorney-General about it - at the moment one teenager a week is being murdered on the streets of Britain and here he is brandishing a knife. 'Enough is enough - we need to get tough on knives in this country and our judges should be handing out tough sentences - not brandishing their own. 'There's no reason why he needs the knife there with him in the courtroom - long gone are the days when a blade was needed to remove a stone from a horse's hoove.
Oh for the love of..... When will these morons get it, it's not the knives you have to get tough on, it's not the people who carry them either, it's the vermin that use them to kill and injure people you need to get tough on. Your dumbass might think that there is no reason to carry a weapon but when a madman comes storming into the court or into your home, you'll wish you had the brains to carry one wouldn't you. We've already banned guns, knives and all sorts of weapons but people are still getting killed aren't they. So whining and squealing for more laws is obviously not the answer. You can have the toughest punishment but the states simply cannot protect all of the subjects all of the time, the only solution is to allow citizens to bear arms and defend themselves when needed.

And how dare this nannying woman decree that the judge doesn't have a reason to carry a blade when it's not illegal, her feeling hysterical and emotional doesn't give her the right to decide what another person can carry on them. If that's the case, then I don't see any reason for you to carry that handbag into the court dear, what are you hiding, hand it over, why are you wearing earrings, what do you need a watch for, we have a clock here. Why do you have knives in your kitchen, that one looks rather large dear, hand it over, you have teeth and nails, so use em'. Why did you drive here or take a taxi, your carbon assprint is looking rather large and you have legs, so walk. My point is that she probably wouldn't appreciate me sticking my nose into her life, so stay the heck out of everyone else's.

Swamps ("Wetlands") a ticking 'carbon bomb'

These guys send themselves up. After we hear what a bomblike disaster it is to destroy swamps, we read: "About 60% of wetlands worldwide have been destroyed in the past century". So how come nobody noticed the bomb going off?

The world's wetlands, threatened by development, dehydration and climate change, could release a planet-warming "carbon bomb" if they are destroyed, ecological scientists said on Sunday. Wetlands contain 771 billion tonnes of greenhouse gases, one-fifth of all the carbon on Earth and about the same amount of carbon as is now in the atmosphere, the scientists said before an international conference linking wetlands and global warming.

If all the wetlands on the planet released the carbon they hold, it would contribute powerfully to the climate-warming greenhouse effect, said Paulo Teixeira, coordinator of the Pantanal Regional Environment Program in Brazil. "We could call it the carbon bomb," Teixeira said by telephone from from Cuiaba, Brazil, site of the conference. "It's a very tricky situation."

Some 700 scientists from 28 nations are meeting this week at the Intecol International Wetlands Conference at the edge of Brazil's vast Pantanal wetland to look for ways to protect these endangered areas. Wetlands are not just swamps: they also include marshes, peat bogs, river deltas, mangroves, tundra, lagoons and river flood plains. Together they account for 6 percent of Earth's land surface and store 20% of its carbon. They also produce 25% of the world's food, purify water, recharge aquifers and act as buffers against violent coastal storms.

Historically, wetlands have been regarded as an impediment to civilisation. About 60% of wetlands worldwide have been destroyed in the past century, mostly due to draining for agriculture. Pollution, dams, canals, groundwater pumping, urban development and peat extraction add to the destruction.

More here


Hands off our murderers!

News.com.au - AN Italian funfair closed an attraction where a life-sized dummy was "executed" in an electric chair on Thursday following protests by opponents of capital punishment. The macabre exhibit at the Luna Park in northern Milan allowed visitors to insert coins and watch the dummy strapped to an electric chair go through his death throes - convulsing, smoking, and slumping from the simulated charge. Milan's mayor, church organisations and "Hands Off Cain," a group working to abolish the death penalty worldwide, had all protested against it. Hands Off Cain called it "a demented and culturally devastating attraction, which undoes years of work on the part of those struggling against the death penalty". It was a way of profiting from the "base and bestial aspects of our society," it said.
Hey, isn't Cain the fellow who was jealous of his brother, grew to hate him and then killed him, and then lied about it to God, as in he is a lying murderer. Gee, I wonder if they named their organisation after him intentionally. What a surprise, lefties yearning to coddle a murderer and rushing to save their murderer, hands off our murdering baby!
Wall Street Journal - Most commentators who oppose capital punishment assert that an execution has no deterrent effect on future crimes. Recent evidence, however, suggests that the death penalty, when carried out, has an enormous deterrent effect on the number of murders. More precisely, our recent research shows that each execution carried out is correlated with about 74 fewer murders the following year.
Oh yeah, 'base and bestial', I'd be happy to have the execution of the scum of the earth to be labeled base and bestial anyday if it means 70+ innocent lives could be saved because of it. Perhaps it's not the execution of the murderers that bothers leftists so much, perhaps it's the sparing of the innocents that grates with them. That wouldn't surprise me either.

Robert Armellin - Justice at last!

News.com.au - THE lesbian mothers of IVF twin girls have lost a legal bid to sue their doctor for the cost of raising one of the toddlers. The women, whose names have been suppressed, sued prominent Canberra obstetrician Sydney Robert Armellin for more than $400,000 for implanting two embryos instead of the requested one. The ACT Supreme Court today ruled in favour of Dr Armellin, and ordered the couple pay his legal costs. [snip]
Excellent news this folks, I remember blogging angrily about it last year in September. It's unbelievable, these women wanted a baby, but ended up with two. So they decided to sue the fellow that helped them. If you're trying to have a child and you end up with twins or triplets, you don't turn around and try to return the extra one do you. Any decent person would see them as an additional blessing, not a burden or an opportunity to screw over the doctor and ruin his life and career. I put his name in the title to do my bit to spread the word to clear his name. I don't know him, but I don't think he and doctors like him deserve to have this sort of thing hanging over their heads for almost a year. Even if the case has been dismissed, with things like this, he'll have to carry a bit of this always and that is not fair.
The couple, whose combined income is more than $100,000, sought $398,000 from Dr Armellin to cover the costs of raising one of the girls, including fees for a private Steiner school in Melbourne. The court was told the twins' birth mother had lost her capacity to love and the couple's relationship suffered as they became mired in everyday tasks associated with raising two children. [snip]
Yeah so people who have two or more children at the same time lose their capacity to love and can't maintain a relationship, what an absolute crock of excrement!
The mothers issued a statement during the civil proceedings arguing the case had nothing to do with their feelings towards their daughters, but with Dr Armellin's failure to comply with their wishes. "This has never been a case about whether our children are loved," they said. "They are cherished."
Yeah, pig's bum, what happened to [*cue violins*], "twins' birth mother had lost her capacity to love"? They saw dollar signs, pure and simple, that's what I think.
The couple's solicitor Thena Kyprianou said her clients, who live in Melbourne, were shocked by the decision. "They're disappointed," Ms Kyprianou said. [snip] Ms Kyprianou said the publicity surrounding the case had destroyed her clients' privacy.
More like, shocked that the court and ordinary people aren't buying your crock of excrement. Perhaps they thought that since they're lesbians they'd be treated like some sort of super citizen. Well, they should be ashamed of themselves once they're done with the 'shock'. And what's this whining about privacy, you should have thought of that before you went after the money dear. What about the privacy of this good doctor, what about his reputation, his career, both of which you two were happy to ruin & smear. Well, you wanted to play with fire, time to suck it up and pay the doctors legal costs. Perhaps he should consider suing them for his time that they wasted and the loss of revenue that he suffered because he was too busy defending himself for almost a year, I think it's only fair.

Why is the right happier than the left?

Summary and comments by Andrew Norton below followed by a few comments from me -- JR

So far as I am aware, every survey that asks about political orientation and happiness finds that right-wingers are happier than left-wingers. In the 2007 Australian Survey of Social Attitudes, Liberal identifiers were a massive 13% ahead of Labor identifiers as describing themselves as `very happy', 40%/27%. At his blog, Winton Bates summarises a new article on this subject, by Jaime Napier and John Jost in the June issue of Psychological Science, this way:
The study suggests that some of the association between political orientation and subjective well-being is accounted for by beliefs about inequality. The authors examined the effect of introducing ideological variables - relating to beliefs about inequality and meritocracy- in regression analyses explaining life satisfaction in the U.S. and nine other countries. They found that when the ideological variable was introduced into the analysis it took some of the explanatory power away from the political variable. .

The authors conclude that "inequality takes a greater psychological toll on liberals than on conservatives, apparently because liberals lack ideological rationalizations that would help them frame inequality in a positive (or at least neutral) light"

I don't doubt that there is a statistical relationship between beliefs about inequality, meritocracy, and getting ahead that helps explain why leftists are not as happy as conservatives and others on the right. Even the new president of the American Enterprise Institute, Arthur Brooks, makes this point in his book Gross National Happiness.

But how likely is that when people are asked how happy they feel, their mind turns to ideological rationalisations of inequality? Why would some local income inequality disturb some respondents so much, and not all the people who are sick in hospital, or dissatisfied with their personal relationships, or any of the other things known to have big negative effects on personal well-being?

I think there is a better theory, one that is more consistent with the subjective well-being literature, which explains this result: that both lower average happiness and leftism have a common link to a weaker sense of personal control and optimism. Both these attributes are strongly correlated with happiness; and one of the tasks of the `positive psychology' movement (the clinical side of subjective well-being research) is to try to enhance these senses.

For example, in the Australian Survey of Social Attitudes 2005 those who agreed or strongly agreed that they had a good chance of improving their standard of living were more than twice as likely as those who disagreed or strongly disagreed to rate themselves at 9 or 10 on a 0 to 10 happiness scale. By lesser margins, those who thought that they could get a new job at least as good as their current one, and those who enjoyed having a lot of choices, were significantly happier than those who thought it would be difficult to get a new job or did not enjoy having choices.

When we tabulate these against party ID, Liberal supporters are 10 to 23 percentage points more likely to give answers suggesting that the respondents feel in control and optimistic about the future.

People who don't feel like they are fully in control of their lives or optimistic about their own prospects are more likely to support left-wing parties, which promise to look after them. But optimistic and in-control people are more likely to want the government to let them get on with their lives without interference, and support right-of-centre parties.

Societal inequalities may play a role in why people feel the way they do, but I would hypothesise that it has more to do with the how the respondent feels that it affects him/her personally than with inequality in general. Americans, for example, tend to be much more optimistic about their prospects than Europeans, even though actual social mobility is similar in both places.

But neither liberals nor conservatives (in the American senses of those words) are likely to directly consider inequality when asked about their personal happiness. Conservatives won't rationalise it because they won't think about it; and unless they are highly ideological (such as being a university academic) `liberals' won't think about it either. But their lack of control and optimism will affect their answer.


I am always surprised that the Left/Right happiness gap is not greater. Pervasive dissatisfaction with the world about one is the defining characteristic of Leftism. It is what Leftism is. That the gap is not greater probably shows that most people are not very political.

The academic explanation given above by Jost & Co. is absurd. They show that by removing ideology from the equation, the gap is less. So if you take most of the Leftishness out of Leftism, the gap is less. Big deal! True-by-definition or artifactual findings are of course exceptionally uninteresting but parading such findings as empirical fact is an old dodge of the intellectually second-rate. It's not the first example of extraordinarily poor scholarship from John Jost, of course. The relevant journal abstract is presented below: -- JR

Why Are Conservatives Happier Than Liberals?

By Jaime L. Napier and John T. Jost

In this research, we drew on system-justification theory and the notion that conservative ideology serves a palliative function to explain why conservatives are happier than liberals. Specifically, in three studies using nationally representative data from the United States and nine additional countries, we found that right-wing (vs. left-wing) orientation is indeed associated with greater subjective well-being and that the relation between political orientation and subjective well-being is mediated by the rationalization of inequality. In our third study, we found that increasing economic inequality (as measured by the Gini index) from 1974 to 2004 has exacerbated the happiness gap between liberals and conservatives, apparently because conservatives (more than liberals) possess an ideological buffer against the negative hedonic effects of economic inequality.


Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

Green hypocrisy

Hat tip Road Sassy.

Green Ads Ensure No One Gets The Message

By AR - TrinityP3 has some useful information for companies wishing to maintain their green credentials. They have worked out that advertising on popular TV shows carries a higher carbon-footprint than unwatched TV shows. They have a provided a handy table to assist handwringing marketers in their decision making.

TrintyP3 Managing Director Darren Wolley advises,
"Companies claiming carbon neutrality should ensure they also include the impact of their marketing and advertising initiatives, which produce significant carbon emissions, to avoid any accusation of Greenwashing. TrinityP3 is currently formalising a standard carbon footprint measurement of advertising.

"This is the first measurement on the impact of advertisements in the world and we will be speaking on our methodology at an international conference in Boston in October.

"Most companies have been obliged to think through their strategies on reducing carbon emissions and they need to remember that their marketing strategies do have an environmental impact that needs to be included. This is not something that is easily able to be measured."
So it's clear. Companies or, say, government propaganda campaigns, which want to stay green better make sure they advertise where no one is watching.

Paralipomena: Living and learning

I mentioned a while back that I have a blog called "Paralipomena" (Greek for "Things left out") where I put up articles that interest me but which do not have an obvious or immediate home on any of my other blogs. I have never posted regularly to it and I started it primarily as an aide memoire to myself -- but I thought that I might as well mention it in case there are a few others who have similar interests to mine.

Topics covered range from food to flying saucers. Some of the articles are political and some reflect cultural and historical interests that I have. There's more to life than politics! If there weren't such a lot of nonsense going on in public life, I would be devoting myself to cultural interests. My principal contribution to the education of my son, for instance, has been to ensure that he has a good grounding in English poetry! But instead of pursuing my cultural interests, I feel that have to do my best to expose the pretensions of psychopaths like Obama and the Pelosi Democrats! Poetry is heaps more pleasant.

Recently, however, none of the posts on Paralipomena have been coming up. If you tried to log onto the blog you got an empty file. I wrote several times to the owners of the blogging service concerned seeking a fix but was ignored. I eventually got a bit peeved at that, therefore, and decided to transfer operations to a blogspot site. Good old blogspot! It too has its oddities but I know its foibles and how to deal with them by now.

So my new blogspot site for "Paralipomena" is now up. I have transferred all my more recent posts to it. Rather perversely, however, I found out at the last moment what the problem with the original site was. I was doing a bit of fiddling around with the various options on the site when I found that the template I had been using had been deleted! No wonder the blog came up as an empty file! So if you have any blog that uses Wordpress software and your blog comes up as a blank, try an alternative template! I have now chosen a different template and the old blog is perfectly accessible again. I am going to stick with the blogspot site for now, however. I expect fewer nasty surprises there.


Rudd's nutty climate scheme knocked on the head

The conservatives seem to have taken seriously the advice given to them the day before by the widely-read Andrew Bolt -- See immediately following the article below. Rudd's problem now is that the Greenies think his scheme is too little so they won't back it and the conservatives think it is too much so they won't back it -- in which case the scheme cannot get through the Senate

Kevin Rudd faces a delay in the introduction of his carbon emissions trading system until after the next election, with Brendan Nelson vowing last night that the Coalition will not accept a start-up date before "2011 at the earliest". The Opposition Leader told The Australian that the Prime Minister's plan to begin emissions trading in July 2010 was a threat to the economy and the Coalition would reject legislation allowing trading until it was clear whether China and the US would join a global pact to reduce their emissions. International talks aimed at creating a pact to replace the Kyoto Protocol on emissions reduction will not be completed until late next year following a meeting in Copenhagen.

Dr Nelson's warning came ahead of a meeting in Sydney today of a coalition of Australia's biggest exporters and the powerful Australian Workers Union aimed at considering alternatives to the Government's plans to address climate change, detailed in a green paper released last week. Today's AWU Climate Change Roundtable was convened by the union's national secretary, Paul Howes, and will include representatives of the LNG, cement and aluminium industries.

A growing chorus of exposed industries - including airlines, petrol refiners, LNG exporters, cement manufacturers and aluminium smelters - has voiced concerns in recent days that billions of dollars of investment risk being lost overseas. Their concerns tally with AWU fears that thousands of jobs would be lost on the tide of outgoing investment.

In a letter obtained by The Australian inviting employers to today's roundtable, Mr Howes says participation would serve to inform the commonwealth's final policy on the ETS. Opposition resources spokesman David Johnston also widened the gap between the major parties yesterday by insisting the LNG industry be offered free permits under the ETS.

Dr Nelson's comments on the timing of the introduction of emissions trading mean Mr Rudd faces the choice of agreeing to a delay or negotiating with the Greens for Senate approval for his plan. Government sources have made it clear Mr Rudd sees little chance of compromise with the Greens, who want his $500 million taxpayer-funded investment to research clean coal technologies scrapped.

Last night, Dr Nelson said there was no room for "extreme positions on either side" of the climate debate. "If Mr Rudd wishes to be saved from himself, I am here to help," he said. "He is proposing to bring legislation into the parliament before the Copenhagen meeting even occurs, which will determine what sort of shape the global response will take from 2012."

Dr Nelson said it was possible the Opposition would back emissions trading legislation with "responsible amendments". But his starting point was the absolute conviction that Australia should not embrace action that could damage its economy without knowing whether big emitters like China, the US and India would join a new global emissions reduction pact. "(Mr Rudd is) determined to do this from 2010 from my view without having due regard for the economic consequences of what he is about to do," Dr Nelson said.

"Mr Rudd is proposing to impose on Australia in about two years' time an emissions trading scheme which is still poorly developed. The economic assumptions underwriting it are yet to be developed, let alone tested, in an Australia in a deteriorating economic climate." Insisting the actions of the US, China and India were "the main game", he also said the Coalition wanted a guarantee that Mr Rudd's promised reductions in fuel excise to make up for increases in fuel prices continue indefinitely, not be reviewed after three years, as was the Government's proposal.

Mr Howes, who yesterday declined to comment on the AWU-convened meeting, has previously warned the Government's goal of having an ETS in place by 2010 would destroy local jobs. "The roundtable will bring together senior executives from a range of industries and peak industry organisations in the trade-exposed emissions intensive sector of the Australian economy that have a stake in the sector's future under an emissions trading scheme," Mr Howes wrote in his letter.

The Australian Aluminium Council, the Cement Industry Federation and the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association confirmed yesterday they and some of their member organisations would attend the meeting. AAC chief Ron Knapp said he would be raising the "significant impact of the ETS on the economy and employment in this country". "The ETS doesn't change future global aluminium production expectations; it just changes the address of smelters and that's to the detriment of Australia."

CIF chief executive Robyn Bain said she would attend with representatives from member companies Cement Australia and Adelaide Brighton. "We're all in agreeance that the emissions trading scheme needs to deal with carbon reduction but ensure that industry - particularly manufacturing in Australia - is kept and has the ability to grow."

APPEA chief executive Belinda Robinson said the ETS meant Australia's LNG industry and its "capacity for assisting the world move to a lower greenhouse future will be seriously compromised and that means thousands and thousands of jobs - existing and new - will also be at risk".

Senator Johnston yesterday said the Opposition front bench would agree on Tuesday that LNG was a clean transitional fossil fuel and deserved free permits, despite falling outside the threshold for compensation set down by the Rudd Government in its emissions trading green paper. The front bench is "not going to take very much persuading", he said. "The alternative is to do what the Government is doing, which is to effectively say to the LNG industry, 'You should go and develop somewhere else where you don't have a carbon price ripping at your profitability'."

The evolving Coalition position widens the differences between the Coalition and the Rudd Government as Labor seeks Coalition support for its emissions trading regime in the Senate. But some in the Coalition believe it should differentiate itself from the Government even further.

Labor has said it understands the LNG industry's concerns and will talk to LNG producers before it reaches a final position on its scheme. But the Government is adamant that it cannot compensate all trade-exposed industries, or deliver full compensation to those it does help, because this would impose an intolerable burden on other sectors of the economy.

Climate Change Minister Penny Wong said government assistance to industry would have to be gradually reduced over time. "To do otherwise would be economically irresponsible - it would compromise Australia's efforts to reduce carbon pollution and place more of the burden on other parts of the economy," Senator Wong said after attending a meeting in Sydney to discuss the Government's white paper.

Also yesterday, Wayne Swan declared his pledge to use "every cent" in revenue raised through the ETS to help assist households and business would continue for the life of the Rudd Government.


If Michael Short can doubt, so can the Liberal Party

By Andrew Bolt

Michael Short, business editor of The Age, continues his assault on the warming evangelicals running the rest of his paper by publishing yet another article (this one by Professor Geoffrey Kearsley) finally telling Age readers the truth about global warming - that it stopped a decade ago:
There is much more yet to learn. My point is this: It may well be that human activity is indeed changing the climate, at least in part, but there is an increasing body of science that says that the sun may have a greater role. If it does have, then global warming is likely to stop, as it appears to have done since 1998, and if the current sunspot cycle fails to ignite, then cooling, possibly rapid and severe cooling, may eventuate. The next five years will tell us a great deal. In these circumstances, we should wait and see.

Short's campaign could prove critical to Kevin Rudd's future. Age readers are unlikely to have ever heard this heresy before, and will now be told it's OK to doubt. What's more, Short is clearly showing the Fairfax bosses what a real editor committed to restoring The Age's long-dead reputation for open debate would look like. He has put himself in the running to take over from editor Andrew Jaspan, a global warming fanatic who has tried instead to suppress debate and has just fired the only conservative columnist (contributer Jon Roskam) on the grounds that he's too well exposed. If Short replaces Jaspan and takes The Age off the global warming bandwagon, already being quietly deserted by The Australian, Rudd's hopes of marginalising sceptical scientists and inconvenient truths will be destroyed. The ABC can't sell Rudd's religion by itself.

But you see, of course, one last hurdle. The Liberals still do not have the courage of their lack of conviction in man-made global warming. Too scared by the media, they are going along with Rudd's insane emissions trading scheme and the global warming bandwagon. They are refusing to attack Rudd on his weakest spot. They will thus share with him the dishonor of having being conned by bad science and salvation-seekers. They will never be able to say: We warned you. We were right, and Labor once more wrong.

In short, they lack the courage of Michael Short. And they fail to heed this warning in Kearsley's article, which I repeat: The next five years will tell us a great deal. In these circumstances, we should wait and see.

Liberal MPs: There has been no warming for a decade. Dare to doubt the theory. Dare to wait and weigh the fresh science. Do not let Rudd drag you off the cliff with him.


Even the ABC is starting to give air to the sceptics it tried so hard to ignore or ridicule. Here is ABC Adelaide 891 interviewing Dr David Evans, who once helped the Australian Greenhouse Office build models predicting terrible warming:
The case that carbon emissions cause global warming is now entirely theoretical and it's all driven by computer models and computer models and theory aren't evidence. But it's worse than that - something else happened. By 2006 we had a new result. The signature of increased greenhouse warming is missing, and therefore, we know that carbon emissions aren't the main cause of the recent global warming.

(The satellites are) telling us the temperatures have been flat or slightly down since 2001.

I think we should do a lot further research on climate, on alternate energies, on clean coal; and we should probably plan an emissions trading scheme, but not implement it. I think instead we should wait to see what the big countries do. Wait to see what climate research produces and wait to see whether temperatures resume going up.

I would like the press and the Opposition to ... simply ask Penny Wong, as the relevant Minister - to ask - to show the evidence that carbon emissions cause global warming. We're about to change our economy radically so as to de-carbonise it. So, obviously, the onus is on the people who wish to do that, to say, well, why? Show us the evidence. But I think you'll find there is none; there'd be a bit of an embarrassed silence.


Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH