Tuesday, March 30, 2004


What the Greenies will never tell you: "What the suburbanite doesn't see is that, in the vast stretches of American and Canadian wilderness lands, a quite different process is unfolding: Far more trees are being planted than harvested, a trend that has been going on for decades. America has roughly the same forested area in 2002 as it did 80 years ago. Just two examples of the resurgence: Vermont's woods have expanded from 37 percent of the land in 1850 to cover 77 percent today. The forests in New Hampshire covered 50 percent of the state in 1850 and cover 87 percent today. One reason America has the same area of forestland today as in 1920--despite a 143 percent rise in population--is that, in 1910, about 25 percent of the cropland was devoted to producing feed for horses. As the automobile and farm machinery replaced equines, all that land was freed up for human-food crops. Another reason for the lack of pressure on wooded lands is the huge strides in technology, chemistry, and genetics that have vastly increased farm productivity, allowing far more food to be grown per acre than was ever dreamed possible".

The weird Green/Left attack on GWB's "mercury" record is rebutted here

The world leaders in water conservation are the USA and Israel. So why no cheers from the Greens? They are always telling us how wonderful the Germans and Danes are at arguably less relevant forms of conservation

Global warming: The movie: "Coming to a multiplex near you on May 28 is the global warming disaster movie, 'The Day After Tomorrow.' I've only seen the trailer, but my money is on the movie, not global warming, being the disaster. Featuring sensational but implausible weather phenomena ... the movie's unmistakable purpose is to scare us into submitting to the Greens' agenda: domination of society through control of energy resources. This column has addressed Green extremism and global warming many times in the past. ... So suffice it to say that there's no credible evidence humans are altering global climate in any measurable way and, to the extent that global climate is changing -- as it always has and always will -- there's nothing that humans can do about that change except to adapt."

Greenie false prophecy: "Paul Ehrlich had written in The Population Bomb (1968) that it was "a fantasy" that India would "ever" feed itself. By 1974 India was self-sufficient in the production of all cereals. Pakistan progressed from harvesting 3.4 million tons of wheat annually when Borlaug arrived to around 18 million today, India from 11 million tons to 60 million"

More California kookiness: "It would be nice to think that major public policy decisions are based on sound science and rational thinking rather than emotionalism and scare tactics. Of course, the reality is far different, as any aficionado of the political process has noticed. This reality is especially stark when dealing with environmental issues, where emoting replaces thinking, and where the neuroses of activists drives policy more than anything else. It's one thing to spend hundreds of millions of tax dollars to, say, actually clean up some land or a waterway, quite another thing to spend the same amount to accomplish little more than boosting the self-esteem of activists. Yet here in Orange County, residents are doing just that: paying additional fees to fund a costly new program that cleans something that doesn't need to be cleaned as a sop to vocal environmental activists who are impervious to scientific data proving them wrong. It's policy as psychology, yet it's costing taxpayers plenty. The program I refer to goes by the name of "full secondary treatment," and it relates to sewage treatment."

Much recycling is ideological rubbish, a monumental waste of effort. And this is not just the view of free-market economists... Both Valfrid Paulsson, the green guru and former director-general of Sweden's environmental protection agency, and Soren Norrby, the former campaign manager for Keep Sweden Tidy, argue that the whole concept of recycling household rubbish is a mistake.

Ted Lapkin's Quadrant article about the genocidal Greenie ban on DDT is available here



This is another story about how America's drug enforcement bureaucrats show the brains of fleas in the way they enforce the law -- making criminals out of ethical doctors and making effectve pain relief just a memory for many Americans. Surely it is about time that GWB made the effort to put someone with at least half a brain in charge of the agency concerned. I have never heard of the equivalent Australian authorities being remotely as moronic.

Some rare good sense from a psychologist: "Three problems of working in the disease model have plagued Psychology since it became a mere handmaiden of medicine. First, victimology, a moral problem: We took on a pathological view of human nature such that people were seen as victims of circumstances, and we forgot about venerable concepts like choice, will, character, and responsibility. Second, we misplaced our mission of making normal people happier and worse, genius became a dirty word". Interesting that those remarks (by Martin Seligman) were originally circulated as an email only, however.

Our blacked-robed rulers: "American courts do not use sharia as grounds for their autocratic pronouncements, but they have their own uniquely Western equivalents: fuzzy moral sensibilities, 'international law,' the inviolable principle of tolerance, and even public polling. With these inane justifications and others, they are stealing Americans' birthright of self-rule."

Keith Burgess-Jackson suspects that my focus on the meaning of moral discourse makes me a "descriptivist" in R.M. Hare's terms and that I am therefore a relativist. That really requires a full essay in reply but, fun though that would be, it would also be a rather big sidetrack for a political blog such as this so I will simply say that I doubt that I am a descriptivist but I don't think that Hare's critique of it holds up anyway. For some of the reasons why see here. And I do cheerfully admit to being a relativist. But, unlike Leftists, I do not at all see that the relativism of morality makes it either arbitrary or unimportant. Quite to the contrary, I think that the rightness of an action can be a very important empirical enquiry: Does it lead to long term results that would be generally desired?

My recipe for today is another way of doing pork fillet. Show what a good Muslim you are not! See here.


The Left have always wanted more spent on welfare and made "Fascism" a swear-word. President Bush deposed a brutal Fascist dictator and sponsored a big expansion of welfare. But instead of being admired by the Left, he is hated with a passion. What does that tell you about the Left? It tells you that they have no principles at all: That everything they have ever claimed to stand for is fake.

Three more examples of Leftist dishonesty: They blame the 9/11 attacks on "poverty" in the Islamic world. Yet most of the attackers were Saudis and Saudi Arabia is one of the world's richest countries! They also say that they oppose racism yet support "affirmative action" -- which judges people by the colour of their skin! They say that they care about "the poor" but how often do you hear them calling for the one thing that would bring about a worldwide economic boom in poor countries -- the USA and the EU abandoning their agricultural protectionism? Leftists obviously care more about conservative farmers than they do about the poor!

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