Saturday, December 15, 2007

Being busy without reason is a public menace.

In a week when the BBC have been trumpeting what they see and highlight as the latest evidence that global warming is fact (and of course, they always include the man-made hypothesis in this as though it were necessary to add it when it is implicit in the very presence of "Global Warming" stories in our societies' dailies), it's a relief to find Stephen Fry put his support for the movement in a philosphical context, reframing Pascal's Wager about God's existence:

"For the eco-believer it’s no-lose situation: we all survive if they’re right and we’ve acted on their belief, we survive if they’re wrong and we’ve acted on their belief. Whereas for the eco-denier we survive if they’re right and we’ve done nothing but we perish if they’re wrong and we’ve done nothing."

So often we get pointless and rebuttable anecdote- here we get a theory of action.

It's good to be able to say that Fry's thought is quite inadequate on this matter.

It's clear that there is not one accepted result of ignoring global warming. There are many, and few of them catastrophic in the short term save to a small minority of the world's population. Yes, that does sound rather Benthamite, doesn't it? Well, the eco-enthusiasts are the real Benthamites, it seems to me. They figure that focussing the world's economic, scientific and political resources on one aspect most prominent to themselves and their interests has and will have no consequences to those falling outside the sphere of action envisaged by the protocols of rich nations.

And if it does, well, tough. IT'S THE ONLY WAY. Win-Win :-).

Update: I've just come across this rather excellent post from Sean Gabb of the Libertarian alliance on the subject.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Amazing, isn't it, how much ground the solidly conservative Thompson can make up, just by ambling along?

Interesting article, with the opinions of ace pollster Frank Luntz, here.

Fred is the man as far as my thoughts go on the US Presidential trail. I still think he'll be the winner. It's funny that it's so much more encouraging (with caveats) to follow US politics than it is to follow the UK's.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

It becomes wearisome

No I've not tired of blogging in the few days since I got my laptop back from the cowboys technicians who fixed it.

No, the wearisome thing is the extent to which writers with whom I am in agreement are suffering from the scrutiny of the law.

I mentioned Susan Ehrenfeld a while back- a lady who cannot publish in or visit the UK after being landed with a GBP250,000 libel order from a British judge. Ehrenfeld was just among the most vocal in a line of victims of Islamic terrorist conduit sewer suer-in-chief, Khalid bin Mahfouz.

As I mentioned below, Mark Steyn is now in the line of fire, predictably- through his Canadian publishers Macleans. I've had a read of the muslim lawyers' complaints document and they are predictably lacking in substance and long on generalities- but perhaps the law relating to "Islamophobia" is too.

Stanley Kurtz makes a valid point when he says "the anti-free-speech attacks on Steyn and Maclean’s, by Western-trained lawyers, no less, show that Steyn’s concerns about poorly assimilated Western values are more than justified."

The only problem with that is that it isn't Steyn's viewpoint- he sees such lawyers as understanding all too well the lessons of their education. I think he's right. Arguing in generalities laced with a vague scent of human rights is about the level of public discourse, and I would say not so far from the standard of legal discourse, today. The whole incitement of religious hatred thing is a vague nonsense open to abuse from day one- and so it is proving.

Google Custom Search