by D.J. Webb
I think there is an important point to be made about jury trials. Of course, the recent collapse of the jury trial of Vicky Price is partly down to the stupidity of the jurors and the removal of the property franchise for serving on a jury — and well-to-do people should never be able to evade their duty in serving on a jury simply because they feel they have other things to do with their time. Continue reading
Learn to take (and give) shit
Someone recently asked me for some non-generic career advice. My advice was to learn take and give shit. Beyond the fundamentals, nothings served me better than some friendly shit-giving.
Frankly, this skill goes beyond work (it’s a life skill). I consider good friends to be people that I can make fun of and who can make fun of me without feelings getting hurt and offense being taken.
When I think of this skill, I immediately think of a scene from Gran Torino
At one point after I had been working for my current employer for a while, my boss’s boss came by to ask me to go to something with him. We’d had a little bit of a back and forth before then. On the way, he told me I was too young to be going to this particular meeting. I said something like I’m getting older faster than you’re getting thinner. He told me I was an asshole and then he brought me everywhere he went.
Obviously, given modern taboos, this sort of relationship is only possible between people of the same sex, race, sexual orientation, etc. No one ever seems to discuss the fact that the threat of lawsuits means you can’t really ever get too close with some of your co-workers.
by Nafeez Ahmed
As a participant in BBC Newsnight special, “Iraq – 10 Years On”, I found myself feeling slightly miffed at the lack of real debate on the crucial issues.
On the one hand, Newsnight presented a number of narratives of the war and its aftermath as ‘fact’, which are deeply questionable. On the other, there were no serious, factually-grounded criticisms of the war, despite a diverse panel which included people who did not support it.
As author of a major book on the war and its historical context, Behind the War on Terror: Western Secret Strategy and the Struggle for Iraq, as well as co-author of a new report, Executive Decisions: How British Intelligence was Hijacked for the Iraq War, I consider myself to be reasonably informed. Yet BBC Newsnight failed almost entirely to bring any of these issues to light.
What follows is my Newsnight-inspired Iraq War Myth-Busting exercise, based on what was, and wasn’t, discussed on the show. Continue reading
Perhaps the principal source of division between anarcho-capitalists and socialist-anarchists in the classical tradition relates to the question of who should control what the Marxists call the “means of production.” Anarcho-capitalists envision a system of absolute private property rights rooted in the homesteading principle and defined along Lockean lines. Anarcho-capitalists also accept wage labor, profit, interest, landlordism, and absentee ownership. Continue reading
Note: Too late for my combination of ceramic crowns and stumps waiting to be crowned. If you happen to be in the same position, however, my advice is to insist on no anaesthetic for any dental work. Short term dental pain is easily blanked out, and dentists become less willing to recommend and undertake anything really invasive. Otherwise, if you live in Deal, Dr Laurens does a nice job of keeping the teeth in your head. I wish I’d gone to him years before I did. SIG Continue reading
by Dick Puddlecote
A Bad Day For Democracy And Scrupulous Government It’s been an irritatingly busy day, or else I’d have been watching the EU’s Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) kangaroo court like Snowdon. Or, the ‘it’s not about health show’ as it could be better described. Continue reading
We all know the answers to what socialism proposes as the wrong question.
After less than two years back in Britain I am bored of the first world problems of this plump and pampered land. I am particularly tired, for example, of the overused word “privilege”. To me, the great enemy of mankind is not privilege but poverty. Those of us who are not poor represent a problem solved. The question is how to increase the wealth of those who still are. As a purely economic issue, that’s a question long since answered. Continue reading
by Keith Preston
In On Community, a recent pamphlet on Gustav Landauer, Larry Gambone suggested the need for an “antipolitical movement” to dismantle the state, in order to eliminate obstacles to non-statist alternatives. It was no longer possible, he argued, merely to act outside the state framework while treating it as irrelevant. To do so entailed the risk that “you might end up like the folks at Waco.” In an earlier work, Sane Anarchy, he suggested a few items for the agenda of such a movement. I now submit a list of my own (after a few pages of preferatory comment), as a basis for discussion. Continue reading
Should David Cameron Apologise for Amritsar?
By Sean Gabb
On Wednesday the 20th February 2013, I was asked by the BBC to comment on David Cameron’s “apology” to the Indians for the events at Amritsar in April 1919. A few hours later, I found myself on air with Keith Vaz MP, who was a Minister in the Blair Government. Without transcribing my words from the recording, here is what I said:
“I do not expect the Prime Minister to apologise for what happened at Amritsar. No more do I expect the Indians to apologise for the Black Hole of Calcutta, or for the bestial atrocities committed by the sepoys against British woman and children during the Mutiny.
“However, while there are doubtless Indians who get a thrill from watching the grandchildren of the white sahib grovel in the dust, this apology or semi-apology is really about British politics. Whether Conservative or Liberal or Labour, we are ruled by a cartel of cultural Marxists. Part of what they are about involves rewriting British history as a catalogue of shame. That alone explains why our leaders keep going about the world, apologising to every group of foreigners who may think they have a grudge against us. I am proud of my country and of its history. I want no part of this.”
To put it mildly, this is not an opinion heard very often on the BBC. But I was then asked about the principle of historic apologies. Instead of discussing the principle more than in passing, I took the opportunity to say this: Continue reading
by Dick Puddlecote
Another Blow For Minimum Pricing – Alcohol ‘Availability Theory’ DebunkedThis study, published last week, is very interesting. Investigating the effects of the Licensing Act 2003 – you know, the one where ’24 hour drinking’ was set to plunge Britain into a drunken version of Mad Max according to the more excitable press – the authors investigated Manchester Police records to see if the many popular myths about its link with drink-fuelled violence had any basis in fact (emphasis mine, it crops up later). Continue reading
by Thomas Knapp
Note: “Whether it’s Monsanto’s genetic “patent” claim, or the “copyright” demand of a novelist that once he’s strung some words together in a certain order nobody else may do likewise without coughing up, or Ron Paul’s plea to the United Nations to seize an Internet domain name he wants, “intellectual property” is, simply put, an attempt to turn the world into one big antebellum plantation, with the state as indispensable overseer.”
Speaking as an entirely disinterested party in this matter, what other legitimate function has the State but to ensure that a novelist gets his royalties? Writing a novel is no more stringing a few words together than growing food is making a few scratches in the earth. Monsanto, on the other hand, can get stuffed. SIG Continue reading
by David Hummels
Control Your Local Police
While reflecting on recent episodes of police misconduct in my community and beyond, I began to think about how much law enforcement agencies resemble the Catholic Church. And no, this is not a pre-St. Patrick’s day Irish joke. Consider the following: The Church and police departments have both become safe havens for criminal abusers of authority. Both are allergic to accountability. Both are hierarchical institutions that value blind obedience and discourage internal dissent. Both focus more on covering their posteriors than they do on removing criminals from their ranks. Finally, neither of these entities truly value input from their respective communities. Continue reading
by Roderick Long
Thinking Our Anger
“Thinking Our Anger“ was originally published in the Summer 2001 issue of Formulations formerly the Free Nation Foundation now published by the Libertarian Nation Foundation, written by Roderick T. Long. This talk was delivered at the Auburn Philosophical Society’s Roundtable on Hate, 5 October 2001, convened in response to the September 11 attacks a month earlier.
The events of September 11th have occasioned a wide variety of responses, ranging from calls to turn the other cheek, to calls to nuke half the Middle East—and every imaginable shade of opinion in between. At a time when emotions run high, how should we go about deciding on a morally appropriate response? Should we allow ourselves to be guided by our anger, or should we put our anger aside and make an unemotional decision? Continue reading
by Robert Henderson
The Tory MPs Peter Bone and Richard Shepherd were the speakers . (http://www.brugesgroup.com/eu/from-here-to-the-referendum.htm?xp=speeches). Both are in favour of the UK leaving the EU, although that of course begs the question of on what terms. Much of their speeches were not directly to do with the referendum . To get the parts which were go into the Peter Bone speech at 9 minutes 27 seconds and the Richard Shepherd speech at 11 minutes and 50 seconds to get to their views on the future and the prospective referendum. Continue reading
by Dick Puddlecote
How Politicians Will Likely Scupper E-Cigs, No Matter How They Are Finally RegulatedThis is quite sinister and could well be our future.
Two bills recently introduced in Congress would substantially increase federal excise taxes on tobacco products, and probably allow the imposition of new federal excise taxes on e-cigarettes.
Taxes on e-cigs? Why?
Senate Bill 194 would:
Authorize the Treasury Department to impose federal excise taxes on e-cigarettes (also at a rate equivalent to cigarettes) if FDA deems e-cigarettes to be “tobacco products.”
OK, here’s the state of play. Pharma smoking cessation products like patches and gum are close to useless, their success rate has been measured at around 1.6%. Continue reading
My article has been cut and rearranged to comply with the TakiMag requirements. However, I do commend it. The more people who read it, the more I may be paid!
“I have never shared or understood the moral prejudice against homosexual acts.Even as a boy, I thought the legal penalties were unjust. A quarter of a centuryago, I wrote an essay in which, among much else, I called for gay marriage to beallowed….”
Please share this article by using the link below. When you cut and paste an article, Taki’s Magazine misses out on traffic, and our writers don’t get paid for their work. Email editors to buy additional rights. http://takimag.com/article/let_us_have_gay_marriage_but_not_yet_sean_gabb/print#ixzz2LBk9PWSN
by D.J. Webb
Do you recall I wrote a short article over Prince Charles vetoing laws in advance? It turns out that any laws that affect Crown rights or property are referred for comment to the Queen or Prince Charles, including, eg asking him his views on the foxhunting law – as he is the owner of a large landed estate. See http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/theroyalfamily/9873731/Dozens-of-new-laws-sent-to-Prince-so-he-could-give-approval.html
The basis for getting a Royal view in advance is the Erskine May book of parliamentary procedure. But as you can see at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erskine_May:_Parliamentary_Practice , this manual was first compiled in 1844 by the clerk of the House of Commons. It’s precepts have no basis in Common Law or statute – it is just one man’s view of how things should be done constitutionally, and probably reflects the view in 1844 that the Crown had a Coronation Oath to keep up and needed to be able to give input. Just because this is how things have been done doesn’t mean in my view they should be done this way. The Queen should have the opportunity to case a royal veto at the end of the process – given the she has spurned her oath in countless ways it seems wrong to accord her any more influence than that.
by Archbishop Cranmer
Note: I believe the Byzantine Emperor who dismissed Latin as a language of the barbarians was Nicephorus II Phocas, in one of his conversations with Liutprand of Cremona. Of course, I may be wrong. SIG Continue reading