Tag Archives: blogs

Good new blog spotted. Run by angry teenagers


and quite libertarian!

David Davis

Libertarian Alliance and Libertarian International Conference, London 24th-25th October 2009


David Davis

As and when we arrive at the event, outer-London-parking-controls and tribulations permitting, we shall attempt to “live blog” parts of this (whatever “live-blogging” might be: I hope someone will tell us!) We are armed with laptops which I guess is a requirement, and we assume that modern trendy venues like the National Liberal Club have some kind of internet connection…

LA not in “top twenty” ….


….must try harder. Rub out, do again, and see me after 6.00pm.

David Davis

Another one


David Davis

Why do I only spot stuff years after everyone else? Don’t I spend  _/enough/_  time already in front of the confuser, or something? Does everything worthwhile on a confuser have to be done in the dead of night for hour after hour after hour, over endless coffee and Dr-Pepper? (That can’t be how Bill Gates succeeded….or was it?)

Incidentally, if anyone knows how to, and would like to volunteer to help me to, pretty-up the sidebar of this blog (as I can’t find the controls in WordPress for how to do it) I would be grateful. I want for example to categorise the blogroll in the fancy nifty way everybody else seems to be able to do, and I can’t find how to “edit the template” or “use CSS” or stuff like that.

I haven’t the time to learn it from first principles as I have a wife and young family (wife demands to be socialised with, by me, with calculated randomness specifically at times when I am wanting to compute deeply, and this causes violent  ructions.) And I also have to perform duties and imposts with some regularity.

So any help from readers about doing interesting stuff with the appearance of this blog would be welcome. (I can’t even find how to import and place things called “widgets”. I can “get widget” – that’s easy, but what’s next baffles me utterly…)

I’ve upset someone


Shit happens: oh well, we sometimes differ about the means of achieving a libertarial polit, and specially about how to communicte with those still to be persuaded…

[UPDATE: There is a constructive exchange of strategic views about what the Libertarian Alliance blog ought to be for, over here. Do read: specially Patrick's long and detailed reply to me.]

David Davis

[OLD STUFF:]You can read what he thinks of my opinions here. It’s a pity that so many libertarians disagree so violently about so many things. This is a sad and inevitable result of lots of intelligent people trying to unsuccessfully reach agreement about important matters: it’s how we lost WW2 for example [ I leave Stalin out of that group for he always knew what he wanted, and got most of it.]

The Libertarian Alliance has existed for so long, and has, apart from being noticed by a few thousand academics, achieved so little reduction in the socialist-megadeaths-per-year count, that one begins in the evening of one’s life to despair of any improvement. Having said that, I do have the pleasure of inviting you all to our conference on 24th/25th October 2009! Only £85, a snip: no increase on last year, unlike what biofuels have done to food.

Perhaps we have not amplified our appeal-base /because/ we are so ideoligically pure, and not despite this.

There is no point in just sitting on one’s arses and talking academically to academics and think tanks and conferences, when real people with real guns are really killing other people who either just want liberty, or are “in the way of programmes”, or just don’t think about politics at all at all ever. (And thus get killed.)

Look here you purists: I’m building a blog – or trying to – and I have not got all the time in the world. People like these might want to know about libertarianism before people like these get to them instead, and make the task of repair impossible.

Or perhaps it’s this that he objects to. I do not know.

I just think that although it is clearly right to be ideoligically pure and consistent, there also remains an ultimate risk to the survival of liberalism at all in any form, as the world darkens. We ought to be sen as serious about defending what we believe in, as well as just being seem as a load of wimpish academics who sit about all day and talk about it.

No possible number of truncated interviews with Sean Gabb on the wireless will alter the course of either this government or the “Taleban”, or the course of Kim Jong-Il before he died. If I am to be now regarded as a hawkish “NeoLibertarian”, then let it be. I am fine with that.

Are we tired or have we won, or what should we do next?


David Davis

Is this a lull in the pace of battle, or has the Enemy Class retreated under cover of stubble-fires while our backs were turned for a pee, or….

…are we all just a bit tired?

Or have we run out of things to say about the badness of this government, or…

…should we just “shift target to next ahead”? (And what is that thing? Do we even know?)

Sharpe’s Opinion has an interesting comment thread on this exact subject, so do go read the whole article and replies, some from major bloggers like Guido Fawkes and The Devil.

Patrick Foster, sorry, who?


UPDATE1:- Curly’s Corner Shop has done a masterful roundup of blogosphere reactions to Patrick Foster’s “outing” of poor old hard-writing Nightjack – whose output will grow in stature with time, unlike Foster’s which will crumble to dust and blow away… (apologies, it’s the Blogmaster butting in unannounced here)…and an excellent perspective by CarterMagna. Here’s mummylonglegs, which is why you are reading in the first place!

MummyLongLegs

Patrick Foster has just become a legend in his own lunch time. For all the wrong reasons. Enjoy it Patrick, it won’t last long.

The Times discovers something nobody is interested in.

Yep, top news story this. The Times has decided to disclose the details of Richard Horton aka NightJack. He tried to defend his right to privacy but The Times were so determined to ‘oust’ him they even went to court over it. They spent a lot of time, effort and money to do this. Why ?. Was he a kiddy fiddler ? – No. Was he a rapist ? – No. Was he a murderer? – No. Was he, god forbid, a corrupt MP? – Oh no, no, no.

So, Why?. Well, NightJack is a blogger. Not any old blogger (like Moi) he’s a copperblogger. And one of the very, very best. Last year he was awarded the Orwell Prize for political writing.  The Times reckon there was a public interest in non-compliance by a police officer with his obligations under the statutory code governing police behaviour.

Me, I reckon that Times journalist, Patrick Foster, is a nasty, lazy, bitter little so and so that would rather spend hours/days/weeks at his computer trying to mess up someone else’s life, rather than get off his useless backside and investigate something, in fact, anything, that the British public actually give a flying monkeys chuff about?. I think Foster and his ilk are more than a little jealous and more than a lot scared by bloggers. I wonder how many writing awards Foster has won in his journalistic career.

Let’s be honest, the likes of Patrick Foster know their days are numbered. More and more big stories are being broken by bloggers. Those that blog the serious shit do so because they feel a need to. They stick to their topics and plug away at them. They don’t publish a quick headline grabber then bugger off to the next Jade Goody/Jordan type tripe. Bloggers can choose what they want to write about. They do not get paid so they can keep going back again and again and again to their chosen area.

Why pay for a paper when you can scan the net, pick out what you are interested in and ignore the rest. Journalists like Patrick Foster know this. Their papers are losing readers and money, hand over fist. They don’t like it. They could of course start their own bloggs but they are too lazy and too greedy. Why write honest truthful opinions for free when you can get some dead wood manufacturer pay you lot’s of money for utter bollocks.

Bloggers care about what they write, they feel passionately about the topics they choose to focus on. They write about stuff that means a lot to them. For no real benefit other than getting their opinions out there for all to read. Journalists get paid to write stuff, so what gets written depends on who is paying the check. Journalists write to make money. Do they care about what they write about, I don’t think so. It’s just a story, write it, flog it, move on.

There is a difference between bloggers and journalists. A very big difference. People have to pay for journalists. They don’t have to pay for bloggers. I read approx 25 – 40 bloggs a day. I read them because they write what I want to read. I don’t buy a single paper. I read the MSM online to see what is going on in the wider world but I read bloggs to see what is going on in mine. The bloggs I read relate to me and my life and I suspect that a lot of blog readers are the same as me. I don’t always agree with the bloggers opinions but via the comments section, I have a way to air my views and discuss our differences.

Patrick Foster, I am sure you have gotten youself very excited over your ousting of NightJack. I bet you feel just fab. You ‘exposed’ a blogger. Get you honey, rocking along with your investigative journalism. Fuck me, I bet you reckon you could teach Sherlock and Watson a thing or two right now. I hate to be a party pooper and all that, but, I have to point something out. Who have you really upset. In reality. Have you pissed off NightJack – yep, a lot, but he took it on the chin, and so did his seniors. Written warning, he expected that and so did we. NightJack deleted his blogg. Who read his blog. Well I did, but I’m just a Mum. I reckon 70% or above (shoot me if I’m wrong) of his readers were Coppers.

Some advice Patrick. If I were you I would set up a savings account and not move from my desk. You grabbed a headline and made some wonga. You also fucked off, beyond all belief, just about all of the British Police Force. I hope you paypacket for this story was worth it. If I was a copper, right now, I would hunt you. And make you pay for what you have done. I would watch your bins, watch you parking, I would fine you to within an inch of your bank balance.

NightJack – I wish you all the best and I thankyou for your blog, it was fucking ace. I am sorry that some wittering fucking twat put you in fear of your job and I am sorry you have been exposed. I hope, one day, to see your writing again (write the book – WRITE IT!!!!!).

This is nearly a double post but I have removed most of the swear words, well, the really sweary ones anyway.

Mummy x

Nightjack has gone down … more Police bloggers needed now.


David Davis

I head it from Obnoxio, and it was sadly confirmed by Old Holborn, that the bastard enemy class press the Times has revealed the identity of an important and sound blogger. You will all have known Nightjack, or most of you.

Old Holborn has some more dirt on the bugger (who outed Nightjack.)

Nightjack won the Orwell Prize for blogging in April this year. A sad loss his ceasing to blog will be. here’s the offending Times piece. F888 The Times, may it go bust in interesting and hyper-creative ways, and soon.

May Foster’s head fall off and tumbel onto the floor with a loud thud-thud-thud, at some incovenient and embarrassing moment, like when he is having sex with a girl.

Simon Heffer for Prime Minister


He’s not sound on drugs, but at least he gets what Parliament is for.

David Davis

I have little time to write anything else today: perhaps you others can do somethng.

The above title alone should be enough to get Tony’s goat up. I bet you all 17p Tony’s got some paleogeological gripe about Heffer (probably supported waterboarding in the Glorious revolution of 1688 or something, and the “evidence” was posthunously covered up be Sir Francis Walsingham and Robert Cecil – http://www.agentsfor1688truth.org … ) – he seems to have one about every other individual to whom I make even a tangentially-euphemistic reference!

UPDATE1:- Heffer is still “considering” standing against the gardening heffalump. Good thing too: put the wind up the shysters it will, since we need to “send a massage” that we have allowed too many of the wrong sort of people into the Houses of Parliament, while our back was turned to deal with other matters – and we need more non-careerist-charity-shop-type-old-ladies (to whom £65,000-odd with no “extras” would feel like riches), retired-Field-Marshalls-who-don’t-need-the-money, successful ex-tobacconists-who-have-risen-to-run-multiple-chains (and who don’t need the money) and the like.

Iain Dale, who ought to know better on this one, and who is too close to the current Political Class for my liking (he may catch an infection if he’s not careful) had a go at Heffer a few hours ago. Who cares? If Heffer starts a trend, there can be plenty of local people in the constituencies of others. Like Hoon, Darling, Kirkbride, Mackay, and any other scumbag grifters and graspers who refuse to fall on their swords (as they can’t afford to yet, for there may be as much as £150,000 still to be troughed before June 2010.)

I am afraid Iain has misjudged the mood: he is too close to those who still plan to gain, even a little bit, while they can. keep away from them, Iain: we will need your powerful voice to rip the pants off the next lot of mountebanks, who will also be no better than they ought to be, and will if we are not careful, become what they are.

The Libertarian Alliance


David Davis

Now that this blog seems to be attracting attention from important people, I have taken certain steps regarding the comments.

No comment moderation is in place. But a robot now scans the entirety of all comments for certain keywords, the list of which may change on a one-time-pad basis, or it may not.

The Robot will decide whether to let such things on, or not, in ways which from time to time may vary.

This blog like others is private property. We are pleased to let people onto it, at our pleasure.

This will maximise the enjoyment that readers get out of it.

Charlotte Gore good blog


David Davis

I ought to get out more.

All going up


David Davis

This from Iain Dale notes the sterling efforts of Brian Mickelthwait to codify a sort of bestiary of British libertarian bloggers. Others have noticed.

This is a Grunwick Moment. Anybody remember Grunwick?

Hmmm. No, I thought not. Sad.

The times are getting dark and interesting. The Endarkenment is even being hastened forward by representatives (nay, family members) of our own Head of State.

We all ought to know who we all are, for solace and for the necessity of drinking-companions within our reed-thatched huts and hovels, which is all that there will be, in time.

Soome of us will have Apple “notebooks” which will run for a century on a ounce of chicken-shit, and whose screens can be seen by the light of a candle, but not many I expect.

DID Labour try to keep Guido off the BBC? I thought it was a !public service! broadcaster


David Davis

Obviously not.

I wonder why not?

Paul Staines – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Sean Gabb

Paul Staines – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Guido Fawkes, never let it be forgotten, is one of us.

The video he linked to this morning, from some people called “don’t panic”, is humorous:-

If he showed it, he’d get poison-umbrella-tipped –  but we can put it up.

So bloggers might do important stuff after all


David Davis

Old chum Brian Mickelthwait best sums up the Damian McBride-Derek Draper-Guido Fawkes-Iain Dale thingy meme.

The Internet has broken out of adolescence, and is acquiring the A-I attributes of an educated Classial liberal adult, itself, albeit just a  collection of about a billion silicon droids linked by some wire and plastic glass.

Perhaps we’d all better be regulated, and soon, then this sort of embarrassing revelation would not occur.

Nightjack is shutting shop, but there’s still lots to say


David Davis

There are, some say, 130 million blogs. I have no idea, and it doesn’t matter really, for 129,900,000 are read by one person a day, and you can guess who. I don’t even bother with “David Davis” and “Ordure! Ordure!” – not yet anyway, for I write nothing there at this time, being busy enough with this one. (We do try to think about what to write, you know.)

But via The Landed Underclass, our primary eyes and ears in the foremast director position, for he spends much time there, and from whom we learned first I think about Nightjack. Nightjack states that he now has said everything he thinks he ought to, and has other plans, such as a book which is fair enough – he does have a job to hold down too.

Says Nightjack:-

It is still fun but  I have now written  down everything that I think is worth me writing. In some areas I am conscious that I am starting to repeat myself.  If I keep on going I believe that I will end up spending the next year or so attack blogging the government rather than blogging about policing.  I don’t want to be all about that. There are plenty of other people doing that better already.

But, attack-blogging the government will provide everyone who wants to, and more besides, with more than enough material, almost for ever….sadly. In an ideal world, none of us liberal blggers would need to do what we do: we could become rich instead by selling things people want to buy, such as electricity, burgers deep-fried in goose-fat, tungsten, cars, steel, space-rockets, cigarettes, and sex. Furthermore, if we do not attack-blog the government, stridently, enthusiastically and with relentless ferocity, then it and lookers-on will start to think that it is winning, and we are losing heart.

Governments know, with perfect clarity, what they are doing, and they are doing it all, without exception, on purpose. They are composed of GramscoFabiaNazis, which is the sort of person who wants to be a GoverNazi – and that’s it, just it.  And thus everything is pre-planned and pre-agreed by them, from the first places where they meet each other: for these are astonishingly bright people we are up against, and not only that, but they have been to the finest education establishments you can buy, and have met each other and have been Eagletonized, and vulcanised, to (jack)boot (sorry.).  

For example, there was no “mistake” or “oversight”, or “error”, on the part of the husband of “Jacqui” “Smith”, a “Bair Babe”,  in claiming for whatever passed as “pornography”: it was claimed for deliberately, to check if it would get through, so that other MPs would know thereafter that they could do it also, and that this sort of expense would pass. There is no other reason – as the bugger is the Home Secretary, and his wife the “Bair Babe” sits in Parliament and does his wishes, this must have been the plan.

Nightjack’s loss to us in The Line is sad: his perspective as a proper Serving Police Officer was useful and illuminating, but his ceasing to write will not be a disaster. Others will come. But if you have any favourite Nightjack posts, I guess you’d better copy-paste them down to your Type Writing Machine as soon as you can, for as he says, his blog will self-destruct in not many days, as they do.

Electronic search terms;

Babes; Blair; parliament; guy fawkes; police; right to roam; farming; common fisheries policy; silver iodide; rain; acid; road access; education;

The main problem with leftyblogs is that they don’t know how to write to inspire.


The Recording Angel

Here’s one.

The duty-Archangel found this just now.

The Staff, assisted by the Powers, will link others.

Libertarians should be preparing for a victory over statism in 2012…


…in one of the countries that matters and is still “nominally” “free”.

David Davis

There are several blogs out there devoted to this enterprise. Here is one.  Written by a powerful and incisive libertarian analyst. Much is going on down, in the destruction of Barack Obama’s reputation for “being able to govern”, which will continue apace. More needs to be said by the substantive blogs available now and with long histories.

Not that we really, as libertarians, want people to govern other people. It’s like, just sort of expected right now, that someone will do so. Bummer. Ultimately, it would become un-necessary: the State could indeed wither away.

The Kevin Dowd lecture on free banking | Samizdata.net


Sean Gabb

The Kevin Dowd lecture on free banking | Samizdata.net

The Kevin Dowd lecture on free banking

Johnathan Pearce (London) Globalization/economics

As promised, I have some thoughts following on from the talk given by Kevin Dowd, a professor at the Nottingham University Business School and a noted advocate of what is called “free banking”. He gave his talk at the annual Chris R. Tame Memorial Lecture as hosted by the Libertarian Alliance. (The LA was founded by Mr Tame, who died three years ago at a distressingly young age after losing a battle against cancer.)

Professor Dowd covered some territory that is already pretty well-trodden ground for Samizdata’s regular readers, so I will skim over the part of the lecture that focused on the damage done by unwisely loose monetary policy of state organisations such as central banks, or the moral-hazard engines of tax bailouts for banks.

Instead, I want to focus on those aspects of Professor Dowd’s talk in which he tried to sketch out what a laissez faire, free market banking system would actually look like. This is essential; a great deal of commentary so far – while it is very good – has mainly focused on how we got into this fix and why the fixes being attempted by Western governments are proving so stupid. As PJ Rourke said recently, the attempt by the Obama administration to flood the market with cheap money as a “solution” is a bit like the case of when your Dad has burned the dinner, so you ask the dog to cook it instead. No, what Professor Dowd did this week was lay out three broad areas for reform.

Firstly, he says we should remove many of the existing regulations, government-mandated deposit protection schemes, bank capital adequacy rules and other restrictions on what banks can do and how they work. For example, government support for depositors – who are also effectively creditors to their banks – means that there is a moral hazard problem; the banks have less incentive than they would otherwise have to act prudently if there is always the government, acting like a sort of 7th Cavalry, able to ride to the rescue. That has to go. Professor Dowd also wants to hack away at the morass of rules and regulations that violate client/banker confidentiality, or those rules that force banks to lend to people, as is the case in the US, where banks are forced to lend to certain groups or else violate laws about racial discrimination, etc.

Secondly, Professor Dowd addresses the issue of letting banks fail. At the present, policymakers adopt a sort of “too big to fail” doctrine; this doctrine, while not explicitly laid down in any form of statute or operating manual – as far as I know – is a rule that says that some institutions are so large, and the attendant systemic risks posed by their failure so catastrophic, that they should not be allowed to go out of business. The problem of course is that this rule of thumb is often arbitrary and subject to political horse-trading. To wit: the US government’s decision to let Lehman Brothers go down last September, followed shortly by the $85 billion bailout for AIG, showed a total lack of clear message to the markets, and to bankers, one way or the other.

Professor Dowd believes that banks should be allowed to fail and furthermore, if modern limited liability laws were weakened or abolished completely, then such massive conglomerates would be economically and legally unsustainable in the first place.

As a result, banks would probably be smaller, and there would be a lot more of them, so the failure of any individual bank, while unpleasant for some, would not wreck the system as could happen if a mega-bank goes wrong. Also, instead of wide-ranging and hideously expensive bailouts, Professor Dowd favours putting banks into administration, writing down, in full, the value of their loan books, and getting depositors to exchange their status as creditors for that of an equity holder.

This “debt for equity swap” arrangement, while it would anger depositors who lose money, would come with the promise, and hopefully the reality, of a rise in the capital value of their equity stake in a bank if confidence returns to a more robust banking sector, as the debt/equity swap recapitalisation is designed to achieve. And of course banks are entirely free, as are their clients, to take out deposit insurance in a commercial market.

The third leg of his solution is broader, and more long-term, although there are some immediate measures that could be taken. Professor Dowd is against fiat money – money not backed by actual commodities or real assets of any kind – and in moving to a commodity-based/asset-based system. He is not, by the way, necessarily arguing for the gold standard or some gold-based system, although he points out that in the 200 years up to the First World War, the UK enjoyed a remarkable period of stable prices, with the odd blip. What he is arguing, however, is that the message on a banknote that says “I promise to pay the bearer on demand the sum of X” should be an enforceable legal contract, not what amounts to the jeering joke that it now is.

In the subsequent Q&A session afterwards, one person made the excellent point that a simple reform would be to ban legal tender laws. Such laws currently require a person to accept as legal tender a currency that the state has mandated for a particular region. Instead, if a person wants to refuse to accept sterling and only wants to accept dollars, euros or Swiss francs instead, he can do so. He can also choose to trade in whatever medium of exchange he wants, and with whoever wants to accept it.

Inevitable questions arise. First of all, in thinking about free banking, private monetary systems and the like, the first objection will be is that this will be very messy; there has been no real experience of such monetary systems in the past, etc.

But this is incorrect. Free banking, as defined by Professor Dowd, in fact operated in Scotland, for example, up until legal changes in 1845. South of the River Tweed, the English system had operated under what amounted to state-controlled banking under the Bank of England, set up in 1692. In the 18th and 19th centuries, England saw a number of booms and recessions, such as the 1840s railway boom and the downturn of 1870s. One should remember that the BoE was established by the-then post-Glorious Revolution government as a way to raise money for wars without having to keep asking a fractious public for taxes, and without having to borrow at expensive rates in the money markets. N.A.M. Roger has explained this issue of financing for naval warfare brilliantly. Indeed, it reminds us that state monopoly money systems typically arose in order to finance wars, while the welfarist aspects came later.

There are also current, not just old, examples of banks that operate with unlimited liability partnership structures – Pictet, the Swiss bank, and Lombard Odier, are just two examples. There are dozens of such banks using these structures in Switzerland and by no coincidence; they have avoided the worst of the credit crunch. These banks are typically for the rich but it seems to me that there is no logical reason why such an approach could not be used more widely. So there are different ways of doing banking right now. And do not forget the humble UK mutual building society: they have their limitations, but as a business model they had a lot to recommend them.

Another objection might be that the debt-for-equity swap way of restructuring failed banks under bankruptcy protection laws would be politically unfeasible, since depositors would be hit. I understand that, but Professor Dowd is not trying to imagine what sort of reforms would appeal to David Cameron, say, but what sort of reforms would be workable. That is a rather massive difference, as I am sure readers will agree.

Another objection is that “real money”, as opposed to the state-arranged fiction that we have now, cannot work for as long as governments take such a large slice of GDP. That is probably correct. One of the reasons why so many advocates of Big Government regard “gold bugs” or free bankers as dangerous nutters is that they realise their welfare states would be unworkable under such monetary arrangements. The Ponzi schemes of most welfare states would not be able to function. Even so, as long as governments retain the ability to tax, they have the ability to raise debt in the financial markets in the knowledge that their collateral can be collected at the point of a gun. But a real-money system still hampers such activity considerably.

In the longest run, the best hope of avoiding such financial disasters in the future is to wean the public and policymakers off the seductive delusion that one can create wealth by turning on a printing press. Sooner or later, if you try to fake reality, it bites you hard in the arse. Of course, it is a mark of the kind of man Professor Dowd is that he is too polite to put it as bluntly as that.

I await comments!

Comments

It sounds all very interesting and I really wish now I had been there as the other event I was at did not afford me the opportunity I had hoped to grab my local Oxfordshire MPs and try and sell them my idea for a “Bank of Oxfordshire” using, believe it or not, partnerships and asset based scrip.

I particularly like his ideas about what to do now, practically speaking, because I guess I always focus on the “hereafter” policies of competitive currencies and so on which are probably still a bit far up the Overton window for most peoples’ comfort.

There was an interesting piece about C Hoare & Co in one of yesterday’s newspapers just so people recall that there is at least one UK based bank on an unlimited liability model.

Was any mention made of Gesell, WIR Bank and similar alternative structures that often started up in the Depression and some of which, such as WIR, are still going from strength to strength?

Posted by Jock at March 19, 2009 02:05 PM

Firstly thank you for organising an enjoyable evening and thought provoking talk.

One additional area that will be critical to moving in the direction of free banking is reform of the insolvency laws and procedures. However desirable it may be to put a bank into an enforced reconstruction the law, particularly in England, makes it impossible to complete in a realistic time scale. The timescale for advertising ceditor claims, the lack of sufficient powers of an administrator to cut a deal amongst creditors and make it stick without protracted legal action, and the absence of any legal recognition (in statute or precedence) of priority for the counterparties of many of the new financial instruments mean that any administration process under current law would take months or probably years to resolve. A bank will go under if the uncertainty lasts more than a few days.

Sorting out the legislation and enforcing the current competiton rule to break up the major banks into more managable units will be preconditions of Prof Dowd’s approach.

A further and slightly off topic thought. The Sarbanes-Oxley laws in the US require CEO’s and CFO’s of companies, including banks and other financial institutions, to sign declarations that their organisation has fully effective internal controls, the records are complete and accurate, and that the financial statements can be relied upon. Clearly these representation for AIG, Citibank and other were patently false. Why are there no CEOs and CFOs in handcuffs awaiting trial??

Posted by RobertD at March 19, 2009 02:16 PM

It certainly appears to have been an excellent talk; I look forward to seeing a video of it.

Johnathan’s summary mentions two points which I think could be implemented fairly quickly and do much to improve on the current system: repeal of “legal tender” laws and elimination of deposit insurance. The former is fairly straightforward and explained in the article. The second bears more discussion.

Deposit insurance (in the US, anyway) is an artifact of the Great Depression, installed to prevent catastrophic “runs” on banks, sometimes sparked by mere rumor. It was (and is) a legitimate concern, and while the problem is exacerbated by a fractional reserve system (as I’m sure Paul will interject here at some point), it would also be a problem even without fractional reserve lending. The US’s solution was to create a new federal agency (the FDIC) to run the insurance fund, and (not coincidentally) directly regulate most banks. Therein lies the flaw.

The FDIC is staffed by government bureaucrats with no personal economic stake in the game. They are, by and large, decent and well-meaning people, but they aren’t the “best and brightest” (such people don’t work for bureaucracies) and they are hampered by hidebound rules and a lumbering, ineffecient and inflexible system. Insurance “premiums” are not established on any actuarial basis, but are essentially identical for all banks, however well or badly managed [1], and setting the rate is quite politicized. The proper response should be to use private deposit insurance.

With private deposit insurance, banks could shop around for insurance companies with the best rates and service. The insurance companies themselves would more accurately and carefully assess “risk” than it would ever be possible for the government to do, and would price accordingly. They would set capital levels which make sense given the specific nature of the bank’s business (rather than one-size-fits-all rules), assess the true value of its assets and liabilities (including, where appropriate, off-balance-sheet contingent liabilities), and in general do a better job of assessing the because it is their (and their shareholders’) money which is at risk. If the FDIC misprices, the insurance fund gets depleted and they go to the government for more money. If a private insurance company misprices, its capital gets depleted and shareholders replace the management. Competition among insurance companies would keep any from becoming unduly risk-averse in their regulations or expensive in their pricing. It’s a true free-market solution, and would work.

[1] There has been a move in recent years to incorporate some sort of “risk-adjusted” element to the premiums, but if this has actually been implemented (I’m not sure about that) the differential was essentially nominal.

Posted by Laird at March 19, 2009 04:28 PM

RobertD, you make a good point about the speed of administration process under existing English law. Prof. Dowd made the point that the debt-for-equity swap and recapitalisation of a bank would have to be done very fast, over a weekend. A long delay would be a disaster, in particular, because of the need for businesses etc to make payments and handle invoices, etc.

Laird, thanks for the detail on the insurance angle.

Posted by Johnathan Pearce at March 19, 2009 05:01 PM

I am delighted to see articles like this posted on Samizdata Jonathan – excellent, more in this vein as and when you can please.

Posted by mike at March 19, 2009 05:19 PM

This is the problem I see with insurance: How can an actuarial table be constructed?

Do bank failures follow a known statistical pattern? Clearly not.

I wouldn’t believe any private agency offering deposit insurance. Gold reserves are all that can be believed. At least until an actuarial table can be constructed.

Posted by Current at March 19, 2009 05:23 PM

Two questions:

1. As Laird pointed out above, the bank guarantees were specifically made to avoid panics, wouldn’t the removal of these guarantees necessarily cause panics? With the advent of instantaneous communication available to even the stupidest among us, wouldn’t ‘runs on the bank’ become a regular event?

2. Fiat money v. asset backed currency -
With fiat money there is a good deal of leverage that is not possible with the asset backed. This seems to imply that under a asset backed regime the economy would be significantly less dynamic one, and growth could be curtailed. Yes, a blessing in the possible smoother booms and busts, but it would seem a curse in reducing growth, productivity.

Looking at the historical rates of inflation / deflation it really appears that prior to the 1930’s, this cycle was much more dynamic than after: (UK) Consumer Price Inflation Since 1750(Link)
I realize this study is a reconstruction and I have no way of evaluating the methodologies but it seems relevant.

Posted by Will Anjin at March 19, 2009 07:26 PM

This isn’t life insurance; there are no “actuarial tables”. That doesn’t mean that the risks can’t be rationally assessed. How do you think an insurance company insures any one-time event? Lloyd’s has known how to do this for centuries (even if they’ve fallen off course a bit lately). [I need help here from someone with better knowledge than mine about probability; is this a Bayesian analysis?]

Moreover, the real point isn’t whether there is going to be deposit insurance; that’s a given, after the experiences of the Great Depression. The only question is who provides it, and at what cost? I submit that government is the least qualified entity to do so, for a variety of reasons (some noted in my previous post). In a truly free market each bank would decide whether to offer it or not and the market would reward or punish that decision, but even in a regulated environment the government could simply mandate that banks carry some minimal level of deposit insurance as a condition to maintaining their charter. Banks could choose to carry more than the minimum amount, and again the market would determine whether or not that was a wise decision, but it’s still a market solution. (Probably a market would develop for banks with different insurance levels: minimal for those with relatively small balances wanting cheap banking services, higher for those with more money who are willing to pay a bit more for peace of mind. Let the market sort it out.)

Posted by Laird at March 19, 2009 07:36 PM

The Cautionary Revelation (added)


David Davis

Go here. Good fun. Specially the front post today.

How Statist politicians so hate to be hated….


…..of course they do, for they dream of being thanked for politicising all human life….(here’s what they do barefaced, about Fuel Duty – thank you Landed Underclass!)

David Davis

It says over at Guido’s place that  “David Aaronovitch fears the populist influence of “potty-mouthed right-wing bloggers on some political journalism”. “   Guido says the original ref is at the Adam Smith Institute, so here it is for informational following.

I can’t remember whan I read a more apposite and trenchant objective on Guido, and he does produse a crop of them rather regularly too….. so when he says this:- 

This is   because Guido wants to de-politicise more areas of human action, increasing the non-political space in our society and culture, for which a necessary pre-condition is the discrediting of politicians by exposing their venal, self-interested behaviour.  Aaronovitch is right to fear.    

…he is striking at the dark heart of wannabe-big-Statism that lurks in the chests of the entire Enemy Class. We said in 1978 I think…

“What we want is a government so small that it doesn’t matter where it is, what it does, who they are or how they got there” (“free Life”, Vol I, No 1, frontispiece cartoon) we essentially said the same thing.

If anybody – anywhere in the world – has a copy of this primeval edition of “Free Life”, please could they scan it? I would be grateful.

Here’s a good comment on Guido today from Minekiller:-

http://www.order-order.com/2009/03/potty-mouthed-populism-is-an-antidote-to-political-spin/#comment-6223

It’s so good I’m going to print it. if he or Guido minds I will delete it and just leave up the link….

43
Minekiller says:

Posts 34 and 35….TomTom and Anon,

So we are all potty mouthed bloggers? Umm. Perhaps, but I don’t claim for a second home that isn’t, fly my family around the country at taxpayer’s expense, start illegal wars, collude in torture, commit demographic terrorism against my fellow citizens by encouraging unrestricted immigration to buy votes in marginal and safe seats, betray the armed forces, announce defence cuts in the face of Russian re-armament, engage in ludicrous social engineering projects (that inevitably fail), politicised the police against the public, restrict civil liberties to the point of shredding Magna Carta and the Bill of Rights in the name of a “War on Terror” which is a false construct since they are the party that rely on the radicalised Muslim vote in key seats….etc etc.

…so “Potty mouthed maybe”….but not a thief, incompetent, mendacious, war criminal, traitorous scum…like new labour, its Cabinet members, MPs, Councillers, the party infrsastucture…the rotten, corrupt edifice.

As if to exemplify the whole rancid mess, I note at this point in my comment that even the ‘Beast of Bolsover’ was beaten to a slient pulp at PMQs yesterday by a superbly timed and delivered quip by Cameron, the old leftie with his failed ideas sat looking deflated and wasted, symbolic of the whole shambles that is Labour.

They will of course try and further restrict free speech in their totalitarian way since it is all they know, having grown up under the wings of loony Marxist professors at university – I saw these types myself and what never failed to amuse me was that the clever people spotted the subversion straight away, but I suppose most of us never expected the nutters from the Labour Students/SWP/CND to be actually ‘running’ the country. Try as they may it is too late, I am amazed at how important the blogosphere has become to politics. Thanks to this, new networks have been built, views and ideas exchanged, much of supposed objective role of the MSM (especially the BBC) in holding government to account has been exposed as a lie, since it is loaded with their cronies and acolytes.

I hadn’t realised the extent that our political ‘leaders’ (filth all), took this blog seriously and I am delighted that it strikes nerves. It should do. These lousy people have been troughing at taxpayers expense in return for nothing but failure after failure for too long, living behind the sycophancy of the Westminster village, SPADs, MSM journos and the whole false construct of their Matrix like existence.

The game is up and they should be thankful that we are only at the blogging stage, if things get any worse in this country, these horrible, traitorous people may get something that makes them yearn for the days when being a bit pissed off at bloggers was all they had to get riled about.

New writer joins Blog….yep another one….identity to be know shortly…


David Davis

Yup, here we go….

Thought so…. It’s Mummylonglegs, of “And There Was Me Thinking…” who has very, very, very kindly agreed to rant for us, here, from time to time, when it pleases her so to do. 

She’s a trooper, and therefore likes this sort of stuff. So buy her one, please – we can’t afford to although we’d like to help.

Do go and see her own stuff too. Here’s her take on minimum enforced State Prices for alcoholic drinks – that’s booze to you and me…

My old joke, borrowed fromPeter Simple in the 1970s and used on here when I want to irritate people, about  £50  bottles of  “State Wine-Substitute”, is becoming all too frighteningly real.

New writer joins Libertarian Alliance Blog


David Davis

Fred Bloggs, an associate of this blog’s video media research editor, will begin to post shortly. He is part of the team of expanding young writers whom we will be featuring. (Or should that be “expanding team” of young writers?)

Fred is pleased to say that he will also invite comments and replies from people who are fans of either “Warhammer 40K” or the World’s armoured vehicles and mobile artillery in general, and he will dispute the finer points of libertarian vehicle design with them ad nauseam.

This guy’s search strings are more funny than the ones that bring people to us…


so what can I say!

David Davis

I am pleased that this problem exercises other bolggers too.

Are the Righteous getting panicky? Buy this to scare the shit out of them


Buy this:-

Here. Here’s a shot of it:-

 

David Davis

And panicky Righteous (The Nazi lefty Fabian scumbags, who got up on the roof while our back was turned?)?

Yup, possibly, from “and there was me thinking…..”

Interesting snippets coming out of there: will check back every so often. She must be reading Legiron.

Another interesting new blog


David Davis

I am obliged to The landed Underclass for (yet again) brightening the morning, with notification of this newish (I guess) blog. It’s a scream: do go and enjoy this nice woman’s views about labourlist.org or whatever it’s called.

Interesting blog


Here. 

David Davis

Alphainventions


David Davis

Traffic seemed curiously to be coming from this site, a while ago, so I discovered what it was, took advantage of the proposal, and Alphainventions does really add about 10% – 30%  to our daily views. We are already a biggish blog as absolute page views go I think, but a few hundred more won’t hurt: we need to get the message out, to broadcast, even if people don’t stay! (And I’m grateful.)

No idea how it works, but we’re happy about it. For those of you who have come in through this portal, here is an important post about the right direction for conservative political philosophy and strategy for a possible incoming Tory administration, at the next British General Election.

And here’s a follow-up to it. With more comments.

Oh, for f*** ‘ s sake…..


David Davis

Biohazard, envirocrime, HP sauce. What the hell are these people thinking they are doing?

Derek Draper gets tarred and feathered on YouTube, and Gaians are very very dangerous guys, and should be stopped…


…by a massive Geo-education project, starting before it’s too late and most of us die in this century because of their crackpot projects.

David Davis

I read this and was stunned. That real people might suggest such things, beats me. Hope we run out of money first (might do even that.)

And here’s Derek “Dolly” Draper, wannabe-arch-deliverer of the blogosphere to New labour, getting pilloried in the usual way:-

(Psssssst…..Why’s he called “Dolly”?)

The London Evening Standard (is it still called that I wonder?) cleans up the Derek Draper Degree Débacle.

The problem with the Left, and the blogosphere, one which they can’t get yet, is that broadly speaking those on the “right” are sharper and cleverer than those on the “left”. This has to be the case evolutionarily speaking, since all external threats to existence  – and even survival – have in general come from the “left”. Everybody round here knows and agrees that foxhunting for example increases the survivability and intelligence of the fox population. This is no bad thing for foxes.

To make a living in leftist organisations such as governments, the BBC, death-camps, the Police, quangos,  “local councils” Soviets and the like, one doesn’t have to be very smart: only to parrot the party line loudly enough in front of the right selectors, and to grass people up whom you have a thing about.

Furthermore, “rightist” bloggers on the whole seem to be a widely-read, classically-liberally-educated bunch of chaps, and even their off-the-cuffs seem statistically to be funnier and more cutting, more often.

The left takes politics and the Utopianising of civilisation too seriously. Yes, we do too, but not in that way. This very fine Jack Thurston article, (I do believe he is a socialist, but a rather sharp-witted one who can write well) hat-tipped via Guido Fawkes, sums up their problem nicely.

The left, to succeed in actually, really, really, madly deeply truly, winning the battles of ideas, has to lighten up and get out more. The trouble for it then, is that it will get mugged by reality and become conservative.

And, then what?

Libertarian Alliance Bulletin


Director’s Bulletin
14th February 2009
Introduction
Libertarian Alliance Publications
Media Appearances
Speaking Engagements
Libertarian Alliance Events
Libertarian Alliance Book Recommendation
Libertarian Alliance Conference
Negative Scanner Needed

It is cold. I am working hard to finish a book before April. My Baby Bear is now running about the house with more hands than the average Indian goddess. The other Officers of the Libertarian Alliance are also busy. Even so, there is something to report.

Our first publication of 2009 is Anthony Flood, Is Anarchy a Cause of War? Some Questions for David Ray Griffin, Philosophical Notes, No 81
http://www.libertarian.co.uk/lapubs/philn/philn081.htm
http://www.libertarian.co.uk/lapubs/philn/philn081.pdf

Our Editorial Director is working on several other publications at the moment, and we expect to bring out at least as much in 2009 as in the past few years.

While on the subject of publications, I will take the opportunity here to announce to the whole world what I have been telling people for several years in e-mails of response. If there is anything published by us that you want to republish, on the Internet or in hard copy, please feel free to do so. We do not ask for payment. We do not require to be asked in advance, or to be sent copies of republished material. In return for this general licence, we ask the following:

  • That the Author and the Libertarian Alliance should receive full attribution in any republication;
  • That the Author’s words should not be edited to bring him or the Libertarian Alliance into hatred, ridicule or contempt;
  • That if a work is republished by any organisation that normally pays for material, the Author should receive fair payment.

I am on the radio sometimes three times a week. Sadly, I am usually too disorganised to record the event. Here are details of the only two recordings I have been able to make this year:

4th February 2009, BBC Radio, “Was the BBC right to suspend Carol Thatcher for racist language?”
http://www.libertarian.co.uk/multimedia/2009-02-04-sig-thatcher.mp3

I wrote at some length on this issue in my essay “On Golliwogs, One-Eyed Scottish Idiots and Sending Poo Through the Post“, available at:
http://www.seangabb.co.uk/flcomm/flc180.htm

12th February 2009, BBC Radio, “Was it right for the British Government not to admit Geert Wilders to show his anti-Islam film?”
http://www.libertarian.co.uk/multimedia/2009-02-12-sig-islam.mp3

This one needs a little explaining. Geert Wilders is a Dutch politician who has made a film that claims Islam to be an intolerant religion. He was supposed to come to England last week to introduce a showing of his film in the House of Lords. However, after protests and threats of mass protests by various Moslems, the Home Office told Mr Wilders he would not be allowed into the country.

The BBC is a pro-ruling class propaganda organisation that masquerades as a public service broadcaster. This usually means that it will support the Labour Party on any issue. When it thinks it can get away with it – for example, in claims about “climate change” – the BBC will openly lie and then refuse to give airtime to dissenters. In other cases, it will set up token debates that can be waved at anyone who complains later about bias, but that do not allow opposing points of view to be fairly put. My 12th February debate was of this second kind. A lawyer who is also a Moslem and a woman was allowed to speak about three times longer than I was. She was able to claim without any pretence of hard questioning that Islam was a religion of love and peace and that this was evidenced in The Koran. She insisted that the Gert Wilders denial of this was deeply offensive to Moslems and that his film should be banned.

I was finally allowed to make my response, knowing that I might be cut off at any moment. I made two rapid points: first, that modern public order laws are a blank cheque to anyone able to put a mob on the streets; second, that if this woman wanted to live in an Islamic state, she should consider moving to Iran or Pakistan. I added that, as a woman lawyer, she might get the occasional bucket of acid thrown in her face, but would never have to feel upset about her faith.

Why do I take part in these Potemkin debates? I do so first because they sometimes turn out to be real debates. The BBC is an increasingly totalitarian organisation, but not every minute of airtime is yet controlled. I do so second because, however compressed or bluntly, it is possible to utter truths that the listeners might not otherwise hear. The listeners, of course, already know the truth. But it can brighten their day to hear it put from within the lie machine itself.

Sadly, while I am in continual demand for programmes like Drive Time Cumberland, I am never allowed on Question Time and hardly ever on Newsnight. Such, however, is the nature of the BBC.

I have agreed to speak at the following meetings:

Monday, 16th February 2009, 7:30pm – Conservative Future meeting, Westminster. I will probably denounce the Conservative Party. If I do, I shall certainly receive a polite hearing. The difference between the two main parties in this country is that Labour is evil in root and branch, while the Conservatives are just too stupid to understand what has been done to us since 1997. I think this is a closed meeting. If not and you wish to attend, you should contact Lauren Mc Evatt <lmmce86@hotmail.com>

Sunday, 22nd February 2009, 2pm – Marlborough Group meeting, The Town Hall, Marlborough, Wiltshire SN8 1AL. I will speak about the need for conservatives to bear in mind that all the things they have defended for the past hundred years have now been destroyed or co-opted, and that conservatives must start to think how conservative values in the future can be embodied in what may have to be a revolutionary settlement. If you are interested in attending this meeting, please contact Robert Francis <remfrancis@googlemail.com>

Thursday, 26th February 2009, The Oxford Union. I shall oppose the motion “This House Would Restrict The Free Speech of Extremists”.I think these meetings are restricted to members of the Union, and I do not know if they are recorded. But I am to speak at one.

Tuesday 17th March 2009 between 6.30pm and 8.30pm – The Second Annual Chris R. Tame Memorial Lecture and Drinks Reception, at the National Liberal Club, One Whitehall Place, London SW1 (nearest tube Embankment). Professor Kevin Dowd: Lessons from the Financial Crisis: A Libertarian Perspective. Full details at:
http://www.libertarian.co.uk/conferences/crtmemlec09.htm

Society for Individual Freedom

I often refer to the Society for Individual Freedom as a “sister organisation” of the Libertarian Alliance. Since the LA is actually a breakaway organisation from SIF, it is more correctly our mother organisation. Whatever the case, its quarterly magazine, The Individual is now out. You can find SIF at:
http://www.individualist.org.uk/index.htm

My very dear friend, Richard Blake, has now had his second novel published by Hodder & Stoughton. The Terror of Constantinople has been received with universal applause. You can buy copies from Amazon at http://tinyurl.com/bgx5a2. You really should buy a copy – preferably two or three dozen copies.

I also recommend the following from Civitas: Nick Cowan, Total Recall: How Direct Democracy Can Improve Britain, Civitas, London, 2008. This is one of the few Civitas publications that I can wholeheartedly recommend. It suggests radical democracy as a cure for the New Labour dictatorship. You can order it from Amazon at http://tinyurl.com/c93jr6

This has been set for the last weekend in October 2009 at the National Liberal Club in London. As yet, we are unable to make any announcement regarding speakers or subjects. However, bearing in mind the continuing economic collapse, we have decided for a second year to keep the conference fee at the old rate of �85. So many of our friends have now lost their jobs and are facing hard times in the year ahead, that we feel obliged to dip further into our reserves to subsidise the conference. Do stand by for more detailed announcements.

I have several thousand negatives from the Chris R. Tame collection of photographs. I want to have these scanned in for upload to the Internet. Is there anyone out there able and willing to lend me a good negative scanner?


Sean Gabb
Director, The Libertarian Alliance
sean@libertarian.co.uk
Tel: 07956 472 199

http://www.libertarian.co.uk
http://www.seangabb.co.uk
http://www.hampdenpress.co.uk
http://libertarianalliance.wordpress.com

FREE download of my book – Cultural Revolution, Culture War: How Conservatives Lost England, and How to Get It Back
Wikipedia Entry

Libertarian Alliance home

Derek Draper is funnier than the music we were going to put up.


David Davis

The whole “achievement” of the topic and also – more importantly – the comment thread, is really quite astounding.

Truly, there is no humour in socialism: there are no jokes: everything is utterly serious. Like Islam, whatever that may be. Perhaps both will actually have to go, after all.

Ummm…..which one did I mean, that should go…??

libertarian.be added


David Davis

Here.

New sound blog added: http://hetvrijevolk.com/


UPDATE:- It’s Dutch. I processed it through Google.

David Davis

I’m ashamed to say I haven’t much of a clue what it’s saying – it could be either Dutch or Flemish – but it seems to be an inocming link so it’s been added to our bogroll.

I’ve upset The Remittance Man….


….without meaning to.

David Davis

He’s got the-‘ump about a comment left by me the other week, on his post here. He replied to it here, but not in the way I’d quite bargained for.

Wossitallabout? Well, he writes an interesting Classical liberal/broad libertarian blog, from an interesting geographical perspective, whereby he can do two things at once – the one-stone solution to the two-bird problem. He’s able not only to comment remotely on Police State British affairs, via the interweb-thingy for as long as it stays available to us, but also on the nefarious goings-on in West Gomboliland Southern Africa, containing as it does the usual artificially-generated series of semi-automated murderers, and other chimerical mountebanks, posing as “Leaders”, on something they and their sycophantic admirers here call “The World Stage”.

If the buggers knew that the phrase “the world stage” is coined after the work of a dead white Caucasian male playwright, featuring a metaphor in one of his sonnets, I bet they’d stop using it so much.

The point I was probably trying to make, perhaps clumsily, to The Remittance Man is that, if you write an incisive and interesting blog, which people return to, then you oughtn’t to leave gaps of several days…..Apart from good writing (essential) your blog partly gets to be incisive and interesting by being regular – which is why, miserable illiterate wretches though we are here in the LA typewriting-pool nissen-hut, we try to do something, anything vaguely relevant to the point of our existence,  each day.

He puts nice pictures up too, now and then, although I wish he’d get over his cryptic taste for thigh-boots. (But it’s his blog, he can do anything he likes. P’raps I’m being statist.)

Dave’s Part: another blogger in the shit


David Davis

Not my part…his!

Hat tip Obnoxio the Clown.

“Celebrity-ness” analysed….


….along with “Politician-ness”, on The Landed Underclass.

David Davis

When “Landed” and I were young fellas, not only did we not know each other but also civilisation did not really contain what we now call “celebrities”. It’s true, there was The King – only briefly in my case – followed by his daughter  The Queen, and her various children who began to appear, and Sir Winston Churchill, and possibly the Queen Mother, but that was about it. Pop singers didn’t really feature in the 50s, they only earned dosh in the rather princely band of about £50 to £100 a week, and probably it was the Beatles in about, er, 1963?…who got most close to celebrity status first.

Politicians, Mr Churchill apart, who we were taught was the greatest man who had ever lived as was indeed correct with the possible exception of Barnes Wallis, were sort of, er, nowhere. They were “men in grey suits”: they were little different from the town’s librarian who stamped your books each week – whom of course nearly everybody knew by sight and name (think about it.) They just went to Parliament, and has “our interests” at heart, for us. They weren’t even paid much either.

On celebrities, their making and their breaking today: one thinks of the Incas – or was it the Mayans? (who cares?) – who sculpted all those gigantic scowling stone heads to show how advanced they were, and who publicly butchered living young men and women in bloody ways on top of very large stone structures built out of whatever was to hand. Celebrities nowadays seem to occupy the same niche, as “the people” serially worship them and then trash them a few years afterward.

The problem that Landed tries to address is why the families and children of politicians and celebrities are going to be _not_ on various “databases” which are to be set up by the State the Stalinists who tyrannise us today, and are to be for our delectation, our security and our enchainment.

Is it that politicians envy the celebrities’ perceived status, power, wealth and ability to have whatever they desire (pace the Mayans or whoever!) and therefore automatically desire the same privileges? Or is it as Old Holborn says Penguin thinks, which is that politicians have been in control of the whole process of viral-mass-idolatry all along?

Are the politicians who enslave us, been Wireless Tele Visually artificially creating phantasmal celebrities out of the fabric of real people, for some years (it coincides with the Diana-Witch-Mania and the subsequent Nationalised-synchro-Grieving-Terror that was commanded to be visited upon us all, and the real rise of the “Hello!” culture too) as a cover for themselves to hide behind, later?

The comment thread which has been allowed on Old Holborn in regard to this specific matter is, I think, vituperative and unhelpful. The State watchers will target blameless white-van-men instead of us as a result. We should approach this strategic matter in an atmosphere of calm and reasoned and cold deliberation.

‘Avvin a luff


David Davis

Q:   What do you call the box strapped to the side of a satellite dish?

A:   A council house.

I chanced upon a humosour blog. (I meant to type “humorous”, but in the context I think I prefer “humosour” more.)

And here’s about calling countries by their old-fashioned names….

Libertarian Alliance Blog: snapshots now disabled … unless you all object.


David Davis

I have had a commplaint from the blog’s reader, about those hovering-snapshot thingies. He/she’s told me how to turn them off, so now they’re off.

Lefty “anti-racist” bastards are at it again…this time they’re lynching Prince Charles.


Don’t get me wrong, for I hold no brief for poor tormented Prince Charles. He talks to his plants: he refers to nanomachines as “grey goo”: he supports the thesis of anthropogenic climate change…..I could go on. Superficially he is not really a mentally tough enough person to be a constitutional Head of State, where the prime libertarian responsibilities of such a man ought to be to take the side of the people, and rip down the enlarging police-apparatus being built behind his and our backs.

On this blog and elsewhere, I have been regularly got at by people who don’t think a British-style constitutional Monarchy is needed if we are to move towards a libertarian or minimal state – if that idea is not an oxymoron. But I think something like what we have got would be the best interim defence against violent reactionary leftist statist forces – and they WILL be violent, just watch – while we undertake the libertarianisation of public life in any society which is fortunate enough to have our services in this task.

This is probably why the “Royals” are coming increasingly under attack. What you have to do each day is see what the lefties are assaulting right now, and decide to do exactly the opposite of what they say.

David Davis

But not content with hauling Prince Harry over the coals (their phrase) “Give Racism the Red Card”, described as a “charity” (I bet it’s a state-funded quango in reality – in fact it’s the PR wing of the British Council! How could I have not guessed!) has a go at Charles: why?  Because the affectionate pet-name for one of his oldest friends, a 58-year-old Indian property developer, near neighbour and fellow-Polo-player, is “sooty”.

Ah, I remember Sooty! I wonder, if Sooty (the Indian property magnate, not the teddy bear) has a wife? If she was called “Sweep” in private by Charles and Camilla, because she had long hair or floppy ears, would the News of the World investigate in the public interest, and would the (anti) British Council object? I think we ought to be told!

Here’s a googlesearch on “Give Racism The Red Card“.

We did the Harry thing a couple of days ago.

The left laments its lack of “big” or interesting blogs. (it has just launched “labourlist“…..really catchy title isn’t it…..same old dreary stuff – Tory cuts etc etc etc) This is a classic manifestation of why they’re aren’t many, and why reading what’s there is like chewing unsalted sawdust and rat-droppings – unlike Guido for example, or The Remittance Man. The left, and most illuminatingly the British left, who whine and lament the most, are all humourless totalitarian thought-controlling bastards and c***s; consequently, nobody wants to listen to their whingeings or read their dour drivel. Ordinary humans without dangerous leftist brain-disorders have all got better things to do. (This of course leaves the more midly-mentally-tormented of us, who hold quite opposite views to the fascist left, to blog about them, irrittaing them even more.)

Either this new series of attacks on the Princes is a publicity stunt by the left to get attention, or more sinisterly they really mean it and are gearing up to destroy even more Free Institutions.

Just go read this drivel, it’s soooooooooooo wonderfully replete with all the leftist clichés.

Musingsonliberty: another interesting new blog spotted.


David Davis

Might be interesting. Here it is.

Internet censorship coming soon….


….from Andy Burnham, the bust TV channels, and the Onebama…

…but The Landed Underclass has the right idea here.

Harry Haddock at “A nation of Shopkeepers” is more hard-hitting. Wish I’d had the foresight this morning,  to say what he does.

David Davis

This morning the Quislingraph led early with news of proposals to “give Internet Sites Cinema-Style Ratings”, which is of course newspeak for the first steps in censoring the internet, probably via state pressure on ISPs.

Guuido Fawkes, always with a nose checking the wind, has already made plans to move his site out of vulnerable jurisdictions, such as the UK and USA.

This is coupled with earlier tentative threats from the EU and from someone called Hazel Blears, to “regulate” bloggers (which States do not like) – this basically means Classical liberal and libertarian-leaning ones I expect. Once this power and the one flagged above are in place, Gordon Brown and his new accolyte the Onebama will be able to trumpet that they’ve done it all “for the children”. The Quislingraph piece is a classic screed of socialist caring-nonsense, dripping with parental concern which gets the sheeple nodding vigorously in agreement (we all love children don’t we?) while yet shrouding a terrible threat in the subtext, which next to nobody will pick up.

Again, once in place, i wonder which political parties a State will force the ISPs to proscribe? Obviously the BNP will go down the road of invisibility first, it being the State’s main left-wing competitor and also fully-corporatist, for mass franchise support. I expect UKIP won’t fare much better, and it will take some time for the buggers to catch up with LPUK, but they will, they will.

If “major ISPs” cave in and refuse access to sites deemed “unsuitable for children”, then “Best Practice” will inevitably be followed. You won’t even be able to get Wikipedia or Google, since this is unavailable on the LANs of most British State schools – and I dread to think how we’ll get ot Youtube.

Does anybody know how people get round this sort of restriction in places like China, Iran and Pakistan?

…and we don’t even know who is watching!


David Davis

This just in, from Madcomputersolutions. I don’t know about these “social networking sites”, really, do you? I blame “celebrities” slebs myself, which means that, like everything, it’s all the fault of socialism and its inbuilt deliberate degrade-strategy, for decreeing that these person-trons ought to be created in the first place.

In a Libertarian society, as it must of course be in Heaven, everybody will of course be working so hard, for such great reward, that there will not be time for public self-preening in the way people seem to do on these places.

And, The Landed Underclass is kind enough to comment on my rantings here, about these timewasters, who think their lives are so full of self-regarding meaning that everyone else will want to know about them too.

Better to get a blog. Then, not only will nobody know much about yourself except the important bits (like opinions and philosophy) which you choose to reveal, but you can save the world at the same time.

Belgian barmaid fired (in new York) after blogging uncomplimentarily about Belgian “defence minister”. If you work for people, then be careful how you blog!


We here are lucky: we are Masterless Men, thank God. It’s the safest way to blog.

David Davis

Honestly, what is the world coming to? I know that the concept of a Belgian “defence minister” is an oxymoron, but why should the poor girl lose her job?

Here’s the little girl’s own blog. You can read it in, er, whatever language it’s in.

Here’s what De Standaard is now thinking about Pieter de Crem, and the effects on little Nathalie’s employment because he was offended.

I am uneasy, to say the least, about a scenario in which an employer in a “free” nation, such as the USA (sort of free anyway) can be induced to fire someone for opinions expressed about a politician in another country, who might think he has taken offence.

These are endarkening times.

The typealyzer


David Davis

Via the Devil I came across this funny little gadget. I’m not really sure how acurate it is, but it makes us here “thinkers”, whatever that may mean. I’m inclined to go and punch somebody’s face for insulting me so…thinker? My trousers!

Good night everybody, sleep well, for tomorrow may bring less electricity…


David Davis

So here’s Keeley Hazell to cheer you up:- (sorry about the pretentiously-twaddlistic music. I can do nowt about it.)

That’s all I could get without “signing up” to YOOTOOBE and saying how old (very old) I am etc etc etc so I could talk to you. So I could print topless stuff etc, although I would not as this is a family bolg (as you all no.)

And here’s a bit of stuff about power stations, to remind you of what you have lost. This stuff is endorsed by the anti-human-life guy James Hansen of NASA. He wants you all dead:-

Libertarian Alliance Remembrance Day Post 4


David Davis

Thanks to Guido, we can spot stuff that we would miss. I don’t know how the old bugger does it: I have not mostly the time to scratch my bum as you all know. he must have, like hazel Blears fears, an army of blog-driven-researchers, endlessly fighting to the end of their strength and beyond, to distort what the Stalinist Labour left thinks of as the “correct” “terms of discourse”.

But, through the efforts of the great man and his army-corps-sized-stadium full of anti-Hazel-Blears-researchers, I’m glad I did not miss this, which is a moving and sad song. In this time of remembering “all the men whose names live on these walls”, we must not miss the point of what they – and perhaps we if we were less lucky – did (and do even today) for the only environment which has (or could) encompass liberalism and libertarianism.

The bugles calling from sad shires did not call because they wanted a society full of State-Cameras, health-and-safety laws, identity-cards, and the endarkenment of language by the removal of words and thoughts…

…the bugles called because they, and the men they fruitlessly called home never to return, wanted the opposite. Here they all are now:-

More about banning of Latin in everyday discourse, and British Soviet Stalinists’ attitudes to that


David Davis

Here’s Gerald Warner today. I also flagged up this pretentiously socialist rubbish now going on, a couple of days ago.

Gerald is especially good, and far better than me, about the importance and fundamemtalness of Latin (and by implication other languages from which we have extracted loan-words and grammar) in our language.

I add that the freedom of language underlies also the freedom of thought and (by inference) action, which we libertarians spend so much time banging on about. This publishing house is going great guns in especially Latin: I use their books (this is the Latin link in particular – get them!) to teach with in this language and have helped a couple of students already (it is a slow business, pulling the planet out of the Dark Ages despite the best efforts of ths Stalinists) and they are very traditionally-oriented and very good indeed. Order their stuff please.

Phone them if you want, on 01580 764242. I’m sure they take credit cards.

Additionally, if you are an extreme right-wing-fascist-imperialist-running-dog-of-the-boss-class-toff, and also a member of the Bullingdon, (only stalinists and people who can’t say “shibboleth” call it the “Bullingdon Club” so one knows in a NANOsecond whom to exclude and distrust – it’s like saying “horse-riding” when you mean “riding” on a horse which is the only thing you can do – you can’t ride a sheep, can you) which is to say most libertarians if they are honest about themselves and their political anticedents (liberal-left-lower-class-grammar-school-type-boys-made-good), then you might like Harry Mount’s book.

Trying to talk down at teenagers badly


David Davis

“Talking down to teenagers, badly”, is not in it! These guys (see below just here) just “do not quite cut the cake”. I’d give their stuff to an 8-yo as an example of how to construct sentences but no more than that. Not for philosophy.

Just look at what the Anchorage Daily News (or whatever it’s called) is saying about Republicans.

Antoine Clarke comments constructively on the Libertarian Alliance Blog


David Davis

Antoine, when you post, please could you kindly put your name, in blue italc type at or near the top of each post? Then everyone out there (who does not know us, and sadly that is still most people on the planet) will know who you are.

In the LA as we know, Chris Tame always said that a project belongs to him who does most to run it. I am fortunate to have been asked to run the blog, which had beet started before I came to it, and we are now read by an annualised (Peter Marsh’s  (of ABM) words not mine!) 180,000-odd people a year.

I do not care if Milton Friedman videos are 20 years old. I may well have seen these for the first time: how can one know? Anyway, things get old and stick around because they are good. Furthermore, I have not time to make new ones, and he, Friedman, will now find it hard to get to the appointment.

Two-and-a-quarter years ago, I did not know what blogging was. I had to be told by Sean. But soon I looked at a couple of liberal/libertarian/”right wing” blogs. I found that the popular ones were talking outwards to new people who had not really heard either of libertarianism (or even knew what liberalism really meant) or had not really got politicised.

Kelley Hazell (and refs to “bras”) are there on purpose. Can’t think why I didn’t do it before. (Don’t worry, she won’t be able to appear every day…) I want to get this blog’s teeth ibto the trousers of people who may well be supportive of liberal ideas but do not know why. Yep, even “Sun” readers. Of the Dead Tree Press, the Sun still has a circulation approaching 2 million. I don’t know what some libertarian blogs get, but it’s probably less than that. I know Samizdata gets several thousand a day, for which I also aim: Samizdata reads “rougher” than you think, Antoine! That is why it is popular.

If people start to think Kelley Hazell is getting boring, or if she marries a nice sensible plasterer and settles down to have “kids”, I may get someone else. I’ll have to see which one next airs her climate-change views on Sky news or wherever.

For too long, libertarian blogs hgave been talking to themselves and each other, while the Enemy Class strides on and our back is turned. If we don’t alert thousand, and thousands, and millions, of “ordinary” people to the issues soon, we might as well sit in each other’s lounges having meetings about philosophy.

I will have more to say later after I have been to work. Meanwhile, my Youtube research officer will find another old (but good) Friedman video for you all.