Did you forget to take your medication?

I recognise that reading the comments on CiF is a surefire route to apoplexy and insanity. However, this is an excellent bullet-pointed list of Mad Things That Angry Right Wing People Believe, and hence worth reproducing: In response to your puzzling question, what specific 'freedoms' have we lost? And please be specific. Although it was … Continue reading Did you forget to take your medication?

Da do ron ron ron da do ron ron

On reading of Phil Spector's murder conviction last night, and the suggestion that it might devalue his (indisputably great) achievements, my first thought was 'anyone who thinks that is a tit'. That starting point got me thinking about historical figures who, despite providing unequivocal net good to society, were despicable bastards in their private lives. … Continue reading Da do ron ron ron da do ron ron

Worried about stabbings? Don’t be

Here's a nice report by a real statistician on how London's low murder rate is nothing to worry about unless you're a gibbering paranoid ignorant fool. Unsurprisingly, it's received almost no media play at all. I mean, what news value is there in a study proving that the 'OMG t3H knife crime!!!!' narrative is bollocks … Continue reading Worried about stabbings? Don’t be

Dumbing down, and that’s just the fogeyish commentators

In England and Wales up until 1986, there were two sorts of exam a child could take at the compulsory school leaving age of 16. CSEs weren't very academically rigorous and were aimed at kids who weren't planning to take further academic qualifications. O-levels were more academically rigorous; they were aimed at kids who were … Continue reading Dumbing down, and that’s just the fogeyish commentators

99% of men are rapists or nose-pickers

I'm not a fan of violence against anyone, irrespective of their gender. But I don't give a toss about 'violence against women', any more than I give a toss about 'violence against ginger people' or 'violence against taxidermists'. If women were disproportionately likely to be the victims of violence, then perhaps there would be some … Continue reading 99% of men are rapists or nose-pickers

Is Britain really going bankrupt?

No. Or: Britain is not Iceland. Iceland is the size of Coventry. Britain is the fifth-largest economy in the world (although it also has the third-largest current account deficit). The pound is still a reserve currency that people want to buy, despite the efforts of the speculators. We are bankrupt only in the sense that … Continue reading Is Britain really going bankrupt?

Anyone who proposes a worse policy wins a prize

OK, so we appear to be in the early stages of a major recession, which may well go on for years. A whole load of people may well lose their jobs, pay rises will be a thing of the past for people who keep them, and overall incomes from working will fall substantially. Meanwhile, inflation … Continue reading Anyone who proposes a worse policy wins a prize

Epic political theory WIN

Andrew at LC on bloggertarians: Libertarians almost all seem to believe that they have achieved everything in life entirely by themselves, having struggled against mighty odds and overwhelming enemies to become moderately successful computer programmers, despite the horrible disadvantages of being born white, English-speaking heterosexual males in middle-class families. I admit this is slightly unfair: … Continue reading Epic political theory WIN

Constitutional clarification

Parliamentary privilege, as traditionally viewed in the UK constitution, grants MPs freedom of speech on what they say within the House of Commons. It doesn't: a) give them the right to run spies in the civil service; or b) cover what they say or do outside of the House of Commons. Its relevance to the … Continue reading Constitutional clarification