Sunday, July 26, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The smoking gun has some nice tetails from the police report. It sure sounds like Gates to me.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Friday, July 17, 2009
Monday, July 13, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
He is really great on the key threat to our freedom, the international bureaucracy. What I call the mandarinate, is taking over larger and larger swathes of public policy. As Morris puts it there is a new agreement to make not only international financial regulation but executive compensation in "all industries" will be subject to their "agreements."
Thursday, July 09, 2009
"But instead of trying to recruit new hires, they fired nearly 200 almost exclusively white workers and replaced them with a large number of minority employees, many of whom were seen by their fellow workers to be unskilled at their new jobs.
The move produced severe racial tensions, made worse by the fact that, as a high-level Democratic staffer confided, “We’ve been told to only hire minorities.'’
--Well, that would create some tensions, wouldn't it? Good thing the people fired weren't black, it might also have created a lawsuit.
Sunday, July 05, 2009
Of course, with any correlation over time there is a big problem with spuriousness. Increased availability of pornography was probably not the only thing to change over the last 30 years. The cost of reporting rape decreased while the cost of committing rape, due in part to the very decrease in reporting cost, probably increased. There has been a cultural and social shift, making rape less acceptable. And while pornography has become more available, so has sex itself presumably. The same relaxing of mores that makes pornography more acceptable and available presumably has the same effect on sex. Also, it may be harder to commit rape. In movies nowadays you see women fighting just as if they were men practically. Even if this is unrealistic, it might mean that women are much more likely to resist violently, making the crime harder to commit.
The deeper and more interesting question is whether sex and rape our substitute goods or complements? Both social conservatives and feminists, through slightly different arguments, must maintain that they are complements. Both of them are forms of objectification of women. Therefore, the more you have the one the more you want of the other.
There also seem to be the possibility that even if one did reduce rape it might also reduce other things, like the quality of relationships and the stability of marriages.
I think we should always be suspicious of time series showing some broad, general trend of improvement and attributing it to one causal factor. Things in general tend to get better because people have an incentive to make them better.
Friday, July 03, 2009
The commenters on the article take all of this as more proof that Bush lied and people died. They seem to gloss over the fact that Hussein was actively trying to convince the world that he had weapons mass destruction. After all, the years of dealing with the UN and Bill Clinton had reasonably convinced him that he had nothing to fear from defying them -- except of course for the sanctions which were starving his people.
All this is just to say to those who say that we should have a government get directly into the business of supplying healthcare on the grounds that its efficiency will help hold down costs in the private sector: where do the people on your planet go to get their driver's licenses?
All this is just to say to those who say that we should have a government get directly into the business of supplying healthcare on the grounds that its efficiency will help hold down costs in the private sector: what planet do you live on, and where do you get your driver's license?
Thursday, July 02, 2009
Wednesday, July 01, 2009
He goes on to discuss the situation in an isolated area called Ghor. The Lithuanians are in command of this outpost and they take their job very seriously. He reports at length on an interview he has with a local official. Two points are of interest. One is that the Indian government has provided some support for building a TV station. Moves by regional powers to gain influence in Afghanistan is an underreported aspect of this conflict.
The other point the official argues at length is that the Americans are spending too much money and resources in the South fighting the Taliban, rather than supporting Afghans in the rest of the country. Why spend money and resources on the people are fighting and let your friends go begging? I think this is a very important point. I've heard this point for many in Afghanistan. It seems to be a leitmotif of our approach to the world in general, to concentrate on our enemies and ignore our friends. I don't know why we do that. Liberal ideologues seem to think that we can make our enemies like us. The military -- perhaps not surprisingly -- concentrates on killing enemies and leaves taking care of our friends to others. I wonder if it is not due in some part to our judicially oriented approach to foreign policy.
A judicial approach to the world looks at problems primarily in terms of people whose behavior you want to change. People whose behavior is good are ignored. A law-abiding citizen should not only not be punished, but should have no particular contact with the law in general. Moreover, a judicial mindset sees its job not only as leaving the law-abiding alone, but may also induce one to look at benefiting the law-abiding, rewarding those with whom we have no particular complaint as showing favoritism. A court and a judicial system is there to punish wrongdoers. Rewarding people for not doing wrong is irrelevant to its reason for existence if not actually corrupt.
I heard over and over again about how America does not take care of her friends. I hear over and over again, particularly from people in the ethnic groups that side with America, that they get nothing out of it. Of course, to a judicial mindset, getting something out of a relationship with an authority is the definition of corruption. But a judicial mindset works well when the state has a monopoly on power. When trying to establish a government in conditions of anarchy, not rewarding your friends is the definition of a loser.