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Via Dissecting Leftism, this article from The American Spectator, saying what I have been saying for the last several weeks. See here and here, for example, that the proposed US economic stimulus package will not and can not work, because it is based on a toxic combination of wishful thinking and economic theory known to have no relationship to anything that happens in the real world.

Please somebody stop this package. It will deepen and prolong the recession. This will be painful for the US. But because the US is the economic lead dog, and what happens there is maginified in its effects on smaller economies, the effect on smaller, more vulnerable economies will be devastating.

Common sense from Qando:

It’s pretty silly to think you can solve a problem created by too much borrowing and spending by doing a lot more borrowing and spending.

If everyone followed that logic in everyday life, imagine the results:

“Gosh, I’m forty pounds overweight now. I better start eating more.”

“Honey, you’re getting too many speeding tickets.” “Well, then, I better start driving faster.”

“That girl says I irritate her, but I really like her. I guess I should start being more obnoxious.”

“Oh, dear, the roof is leaking again. I better make the hole bigger.”

Amanda has been a lot more responsive yesterday and today, and was able to mouth the word ‘Wellington’ when I asked her if she knew where she was.

So co-ordination is returning, and higher brain function is OK, though it is still too early to tell how OK.

We are hoping she will be able to breathe independently by tomorrow. She will then be transferred to an orthopedic ward, and from there, we hope, to Auckland.

We won the battle with ICU staff over her psych medication after her own psychiatrist intervened. So things are looking more hopeful now than they have since her accident.

As if it wasn’t obvious. This article is a year old, but still gives a good summary of why you be crazy to buy a Mac.

Macs are fine for children and public servants, but in the real world they just don’t cut it.

Via Andrew Bolt, this story of the banning of Geert Wilders from Britain.

‘It seems that in Britain the public debate has already been smothered to the extent that a democratically elected politician from another EU country is not allowed to come to Britain to adress a private meeting with British politicians in the Palace of Westminster.’ 

Wilders is not a violent man, and has never even remotely encouraged violence.

He is sometimes over the top (see my earlier post) but many of his criticisms of the Koran, Mohammed and violent Islamism are right on target. This is probably exactly what makes his views so offensive to some.

No one expects Geert to do anything wrong. The fear is that his presence will cause violent protests, and possibly attempts to kidnap or kill him.

When you are faced with a violent rabble, it is much easier to blame and restrain the victim than the mob. And this strengthens the mob by reinforcing that threats of violence are an effective way to get what they want, including the stifling of debate.

But this could be better. An app to enable you to read e-books on your smartphone.

The positives are that if you have a smartphone you don’t need another device – saving space in your pocket as well as money.

Not quite as many launch titles as the Kindle, but the list still looks pretty good. It doesn’t have some of the advanced features of the Kindle, and obviously the screen is smaller – but that’s the trade-off for the fact that a smartphone fits easily in your pocket.

This may the motivating factor to move up to a PDA type phone. I will watch the titles list with interest.

For an idiotic comparison of the division between Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas, who spend their spare time killing one another, stealing aid (largely given by Israel) and plotting against the ‘Zionist entity’, and different parties in Israeli politics, whose members are often personal friends despite their political differences, and whose differences are talked over in a civilised way in a fully democratic society.

‘Israeli Divisions’ are not what is making peace-making harder, but Hamas’ determination, repeatedly expressed in both words and actions, to kill Jews and destroy Israel.

Even though Victoria has cooled a little, there are still about twenty fires still out of control.

A fifth of the residents of the town of Maryville may be dead. Many bodies are still in burnt homes. Many of the fires are thought to have been deliberately lit. That means some of those homes  are crime scenes. Investigations will take time, which adds to the pain for families.

But the investigations have to be done. Lighting fires in the Australian bush when there are high fuel loads and hot windy conditions is something any rational person would know is likely to cause widespread destruction and or death. The people who did these terrible things must not be allowed to get away with them.

I can understand this guy being annoyed: along the trails through his property used by illegal immigrants are piles of litter including human faeces, diapers, chewing gum and drug wrappers. Immigrants have destroyed fences, killed cattle, and stolen property.

Over the last ten years he has handed over 12,000 illegal immigrants to authorities. That’s 1200 per year, over three every day, and that’s just the ones he’s caught. He put a tap (faucet) in a tank so that trespassers could access water without damaging his property. None have been injured while in his care. Now he’s being sued because some of them felt threatened.

I can’t help wondering how the lawyers behind this litigation would feel if a constant stream of trespassers wandered through their home, leaving filth and litter behind them, destroying property as they went.

I think the guy is a hero.

And don’t let the truth get in the way.

Via Michelle Malkin, this story of Ashley Judd’s appearance in a Widlife Action Fund video, complaining about the culling of wolves in Alaska.

The video portrays Sarah Palin as bloodthirsty and unconcerned about the environment. But this is exactly the opposite of the truth. The culling operation is designed to protect other widlife such as moose and caribou in areas where there are high wolf populations.

I am glad that the Sea Shepherd (which might be more appropriately named the Sea Wolf) has stopped harrassing Japanese whaling vessels. Even if you feel strongly about ending whaling, that is no excuse to ram other vessels in the Southern Ocean.

Amusingly, Paul Watson, captain of the Sea Shepherd, claims his reason for ending the terror tactics aginst Japanese vessels is that they are concerned about being stopped and searched by a Japanese ship. If recent events are anything to judge by, the Japanese ships have far more reason to be concerned about Paul Watson than the reverse.

This is a tragic waste of a life and a tragic loss for Piotr Stanczak’s family.

Piotr Stanczak was an engineer. Thank goodness for the courage of people like him, who in spite of the dangers, continue to travel to Muslim countries to help build infrastructure, and with it, hope for the future.

In the US in January.

Too soon to blame Obama? Well maybe. This crisis is a direct result of intervention in domestic lending markets by the Carter and Clinton administrations. Bush’s attempts to get more accountability from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were blocked. But no, that’s not Obama’s fault.

When I heard the story of this explosion in unemployment on the TV news last night, the reporter offered her opinion that we would see a change once the ‘stimulus’ package got started. I agree there is likely to be a change, but I doubt it will be positive.

Increased unemployment levels are indicative of a lack of business confidence. If business owners believe things are going to be get better, they don’t lay people off. Good staff are hard to find, and take time and money to train.

One of the reasons I thought Obama’s election would be a mistake was his utter lack of experience in running anything. The stimulus package reflects this lack of understanding of both business practice and basic economics. In these circumstances it is hard for the business-owners who power the economy to feel anything other than concern.

In this case, on Afghanistan. As with Gitmo, and his cabinet candidates, and … and …  it might have been better to have done the research and asked the questions before stating the policies which were part of his election platform, and which are now being discovered to be unworkable.

In both foreign policy and economic policy, a careful assessment of evidence is essential if results are going to be anything other than disastrous. Wishful thinking and ideology are not a basis for sound policy.

Dr Andrew Wakefield must have known the likelihood that his faked research would reduce vaccination rates and and lead to increased levels of preventable infectious childhood diseases. That is, he must have known than faking data so as to suggest a link between MMR vaccinations and autism would lead to increased child deaths.

But obviously getting his name in the papers was more important.

I don’t see any moral difference between this faking of medical research with foreseeably lethal consequences, and adding Melamine to milk with foreseeably lethal consequences.

The UN agency which oversees delivery of aid to the Palestinian Territories has suspended deliveries to Gaza after Hamas last week stole 3500 blankets and 450 food packages from a warehouse, and this week stole ten trucks containing aid for the Palestinian people.

After previous thefts of aid, constant violence, including the torture and murder of Palestinian supporters of Fatah, the neglect and destruction of key infrastructure, the sated intention of continuing attacks on Israel, and the utter chaos and misery of Gaza, it baffles me that anyone can still believe Hamas to be a legitimate government.