Back with a vengeance

Good news, everybody. I'm online, with a real Internet connection and not a telephone, which has been my sole means of Twitter and email for the last week aside from taking my laptop to cafés and pubs [*]. Thanks, Telstra and iiNet, for only taking a month to sort it out. I've also begun writing … Continue reading Back with a vengeance

Why pointless parliaments don’t and shouldn’t exist

Something which surprised me when I first researched moving to Sydney was that the city (in the sense of "wide urban area") has no governing authority: the CBD and some of the inner suburbs are called the City of Sydney, but the vast majority of the city (including places that are only 10 minutes' walk … Continue reading Why pointless parliaments don’t and shouldn’t exist

A point of view, albeit not a good one

In the comments at CiF, a commenter called Heyone summarises their supposed 'non-racist' objections to immigration: It's ridiculous that whenever immigration is talked about there's always people shouting "racists!" and everybody starts debating what's racism. This is just counterproductive. These people have all missed the point. The majority of people are not concerned what race … Continue reading A point of view, albeit not a good one

Feared by the banks, loved by the gullible

In explaining how he avoided falling into the common liberal trap of supporting the Iraq war, Dan Davies listed the maxim "Good ideas do not need lots of lies told about them in order to gain public acceptance". The fact that all the main proponents of the Iraq war were lying like rugs about WMDs … Continue reading Feared by the banks, loved by the gullible

We love Admiral Scrumptious

Lord Adonis's retort to Boris on the Tube Lines PPP arbitration is quite superb: Under devolution, it is for the Mayor and TfL to deliver the Tube upgrades within their generous budget - not for me to bail them out if they fail to do so. If Boris wants me to take charge of TfL … Continue reading We love Admiral Scrumptious

Legal guidelines for photographers in England and Wales

In the wake of the Guardian newspaper's treacherous attempts to photograph the secret, hitherto unseen building at 1 St Mary Axe, everyone considering taking photographs in public places in England and Wales should really ensure they're aware of the complex legal situation surrounding photography. A conventional reading of the law can be seen in this … Continue reading Legal guidelines for photographers in England and Wales

The wrong 1980s Liverpool injustice

Scepticisle disagrees with my comments on the case of the (appallingly tasteless, Hitler-trivialising) Sun anti-Scargill front page from the miners' strike which was blocked by the print unions. My take was that either content should be illegal to publish, or people who want to publish (and are willing to set up presses to publish on … Continue reading The wrong 1980s Liverpool injustice

Imaginary, err I mean intellectual, property

This is a fine comment: “I own a sofa. I can arrange the cushions on it in any pattern I like; if I couldn’t it would reduce my rights to my property. I also own a hard disk, and I can arrange the magnetic alignments on it in any pattern I like; if I couldn’t … Continue reading Imaginary, err I mean intellectual, property

A quick note on free speech

As far as I can make out, "the right to free speech" means something like "the state will not take action against you for voicing your opinions, no matter how vile, and people who commit illegal acts against you for voicing your opinions will not avoid prosecution just because your opinions are deemed vile". If … Continue reading A quick note on free speech

Must… not… like… pretend… buffoon

In the last couple of weeks, Boris Johnson has done three good things that I can remember: * Allegedly had a row with David Cameron about Crossrail, taking London's side * Endorsed cycling home after a couple of beers * Supported restarting tours of London's disused Tube stations Meanwhile, I can't think of anything bad … Continue reading Must… not… like… pretend… buffoon