On The Road

October 29, 2007

We’re off to Italy this afternoon, where now we should have broadband. So service will continue as usual. Or not, as the case may be.


Making The UN Accountable

October 29, 2007

The Islamic proliferater ElBaradi says he lacks certain knowledge of the Mullahs’ nuke program. However that Fear State will only provide that certainty by detonating a weapon – possibly over Israel. Mossad should let this guy know that if that happens, they’ll whack him.

Speaking on CNN on Sunday, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Mohamed ElBaradei, pointedly asked the Bush administration to share any evidence of intended weaponization…

“What we have seen in the past is certain procurement that has not been reported to us. There are experiments. And that is where we are working now with Iran to clarify the past and the present,” Mr. ElBaradei, the 2005 Nobel peace laureate, said on CNN’s “Late Edition.” “But I have not received any information that there is a complete active nuclear weapons program going on right now.”

But then he wouldn’t get information because:

In 2006, the chief weapons inspector for Iran resigned in protest after Mr. ElBaradei removed him from his post, responding to complaints from the Iranians.

Head shot.


The Post-Revolution British Constitution

October 28, 2007

To reverse the Brit slide into fascism, the people of the United Kingdom must retake their ancient liberties from the EU and Brit elites.

Why

For several decades , Brit politicians have – without the consent of the people – progressively given others the right to govern the UK. About 90% of new Brit laws are now made by foreigners

To make matters worse, they’ve tied Brits to a corpse – the undemocratic, weak, and divided EU. This has chosen to depend on the Russian dictatorship and can’t defend itself now the American legions have left.

So Brits have to reestablish self-government and look to their security.

How

The Brit state is vulnerable to armed overthrow. Its army has good reason to hate its political masters and is anyway struggling to control an Iraqi city the size of Manchester. Its police forces are heavily bureaucratized and rarely venture on the streets.

So it’s tempting to push it over. However that would be wrong, since violent revolutions just propel the most violent to leadership positions – Lenin, Hitler, Mao, Castro et al.

Instead Brits should follow the example of the Velvet Revolution set by the Eastern Europeans who now throng their cities. In practical terms that involves massive civil disobedience and the use of numbers to non-violently depose the elite.

When

Revolutions happen when living standards drop fast, and that’s likely soon because the UK is the world’s sub-prime borrower. Its external debt is second only to the US, and adjusted to population they’re about the same.

But unlike the broad-based US economy, the UK depends on its financial sector, which is bound to be whacked by the next recession.

Problems The New Constitution Must Solve

Brits are now thinking about the same problems the US Founders grappled with, notably:

  • All political systems tend to despotism.
  • Politicians tend to be incompetent, dishonest, or both.
  • Centralized power leads inevitably to dictatorship.
  • Mob rule is not democracy.

The Solution

In spite of the many problems we see in the US, its people remain freer than most, because the founders were smart enough to diffuse power across competing institutions. Other nations get the same result in different ways – Switzerland’s federal constitution enables its citizens, uniquely within Islam-penetrated Europe – to elect pols committed to fix that problem.

An advantage of Federal polities is in providing stepping stones of experience for aspirant pols. Many of the UK’s current problems stem from none of its pols have ever having done a proper job, or had to meet payroll, or had to battle in the commercial world.

So the UK needs to move from a situation in which one incompetent can dispose of their sovereignty, to one on which there are many competing centers of power run by competent people.

The Shape Of The Constitution

Devolving power isn’t easy – if you devolve too much, the state becomes inefficient and prey to internal and external enemies.

So the Brits should learn from the reasonably succesful US constitution. But not copy it – the two nations have different scales, somewhat different national personalities, and different recent histories.

Plus the Brits have institutions to build on that the US Founders lacked (or rejected) – the Monarchy, the House of Lords, and the newly devolved regions of Scotland and Wales.

Here’s what the new Constitution should look like.

1. Clarity

It will be as succinct as the US Constitution, which started out as just 4 pages and even after 27 Amendments fits into a slim pocket-sized book. That makes it accessible to We The People.

An example of how not to do it are the original EU Constitution with its hundreds of pages, and its current manifestation as an edit to existing treaties – both designed to baffle We The People.

2. Four State Federation

English and Northern Irish parliaments are added to the existing ones for Scotland and Wales. These operate as US States and possess of all the powers they don’t explicitly grant to the Federal government.

The English state would be much bigger than the other three. But federal states can operate quite well with big disparities between their components – in the US tiny Vermont is (sadly) not swamped by Texas.

Taxation operates as in the US, with Federal, State and Local taxes.

All Chief Constables, magistrates, and local judges are elected on the US model and employed by the States.

Each state raises and equips its own Territorial Army.

3. Separation of Powers

That’s between:

Monarch

The monarchy’s discipline of service produces more robust individuals than the political process. So the monarch becomes the formal as well as ceremonial head of the armed forces, with power to veto changes made to their establishment, equipment, and deployment.

That should prevent a repetition of the abuse inflicted on our forces by Blair/Brown.

Executive

Elected by simple majority of a nationwide popular vote and subject to a limit of two 5 year terms – all pols get stale after that, even Mrs T.

Judiciary

Headed by a Supreme Court, appointed by the Legislature, but – unlike the US – with term limits.

Legislature

With a federal solution, this shrinks to about 100 members, comprising a House of Commons in which the electorate for each seat is about the same, and a House of Lords in which equal numbers of voting members (say 5) are elected by each region: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The balance of power between the Commons and Lords is the same as that between the US House and Senate.

The Commons and Lords have different election cycles.

All have term limits – a maximum of 12 years, to avoid the despotism of the US Senate.

To avoid gerrymandering, the boundaries of House of Commons constituencies are set by an independent Electoral Commission that reports to the monarch.

4. Essential Freedoms

Right To Bear Arms

This re-balances power between the citizenry and the criminal, and will require reasonable background checks, a waiting period, and be limited to personal side arms.

Primacy of Common Law

English and Scottish common law apply within their own States – Wales and Northern Ireland may choose to define their own.

That’s it.

In future posts we’ll look at how the newly free UK is likely to behave.


The Unbearable Ignorance Of Brit Politicians

October 27, 2007

The post-revolution Brit constitution must allow for the the incompetence of its politicians – here’s a current example.

The quality of pols in the UK is strikingly low – there’s no Brit equivalent of a McCain or Guiliani, or even a Clinton. Instead we have the likes of Brown and Primarolo And this guy, pitching to run the closest Brits have to a Green party:

It is said that Nick Clegg is clever, charming and ambitious.

He speaks five languages – “six if you count human”, his friends like to boast.

He has a high-flying wife, two young children and a glamorous circle of friends – this week, he met Halle Berry at a premiere for Sam Mendes’ latest film, at school he acted opposite Helena Bonham Carter and in his youth he toured America with the Theroux brothers.

This paragon offers a radical policy initiative:

Drugs…he says must be much better controlled…

…he thinks legal drugs, including alcohol, should be included in any new classification system. If you’re interested in reducing harm, you need to revisit the spectrum of drugs, both legal and illegal and categorise them according to the evidence…

But here’s the evidence (my emphasis):

…in 1993, a study of 12,000 middle-aged, male doctors led by Sir Richard Doll and a team at the Radcliffe Infirmary, Oxford, found that the lowest mortality rates – lower even than teetotallers – were among those drinking between 20 and 30 units of alcohol each week.

The level of drinking that produced the same risk of death as that faced by a teetotaller was 63 units a week, or roughly a bottle of wine a day.

By 1994, five studies had been published which showed that moderate amounts of alcohol gave some degree of protection against heart disease.

A year later, scientists at the Institute for Preventive Medicine in Copenhagen, who studied 13,000 men and women over 12 years, found that drinking more than half a bottle of wine a day – 50 units a week – cut the risk of premature death by half.

So the paragon is just another control-freak buffoon looking for a minority to persecute.

As November 5th approaches, it’s tempting to consider blowing up the Houses of Parliament to reestablish Brit freedom.

But revolutions based on violence have a poor track record.

Still, it would at least clean up the gene pool.


Words From The Wise

October 27, 2007

One would like to believe the Secretary of State is seeking advice on what not to do, but don’t bet on it.

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has sought the advice of former US presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton ahead of a planned Middle East peace parley scheduled to take place in Annapolis, Maryland, in November or December.

No doubt she’ll also confer with Pol Pot, Yasser Arafat, Kofi Annan, and Fidel Castro.


Agence France-Presse

October 27, 2007

This Gallic outfit makes Reuters and AP seem pillars of rectitude – here’s an example.

AFP on the Kyoto Protocol:

The United States, the world’s number one greenhouse gas emitter, signed Kyoto but abandoned it in 2001, one of the first decisions in office by President George W. Bush.

It seems that, unlike the French, the Americans just can’t be trusted to keep their word! Well, sort of:

The United States…, although a signatory to the Kyoto Protocol, has neither ratified nor withdrawn from the Protocol. The signature alone is symbolic, as the Kyoto Protocol is non-binding on the United States unless ratified.

Possibly AFP’s confusion is caused by the fact that democracies like the US require treaties to be ratified by elected lawmakers before they come into force.


A Turning Tide Sinks Many Weasels

October 26, 2007

The US (and Iraqi) victories in Iraq expose anti-Americans worldwide, including bin Laden, the Dems, and the Mullahs.

Bin Laden (my emphasis):

A clearer picture of Osama bin Laden’s view on the state of jihad in Iraq emerges after the release of the full transcript of Osama bin Laden’s latest audiotape. Not only does bin Laden admit errors in the Iraqi leader’s ability to unite the tribes and Sunni insurgent groups, he views the situation in Iraq as dire for al Qaeda.

Bin Laden accuses his foot soldier of “negligence” for failing to properly employ IEDs, laments the unwillingness of Iraqis who do not wish to attack their brothers in the police and army, and closes his statement by saying “the darkness [in Iraq] has become pitch black.”

…He is also concerned about the infiltration of Iraqi and American spies.

In Ramadi, “the city that al Qaeda leaders once declared the seat of a new Islamic caliphate and capital of the Iraqi insurgency,” the Anbar Awakening held a march honoring Sheik Sattar Abu Risha, the leader of the movement who was slain by al Qaeda 40 days ago…There were no attacks on the procession.

“Al-Qaeda never wanted to see the sons of Anbar to unite and form security forces. Now I think we have broken their back by building the police and security force,” said Sheik Ahmed Abu Risha, the brother of Sattar who succeeded him as the leader of the Anbar Awakening. “Let them come forward and show their faces…. Let them come out, we will fight them.”

Clinton now has to face the consequences of calling the architect of this victory a liar. And the Mullahs can reasonably expect to be on the wrong end of this next year (my emphasis):

PALMDALE, Calif., July 19, 2007 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) — The U.S. Air Force’s B-2 stealth bomber would be able to attack and destroy an expanded set of hardened, deeply buried military targets using a new 30,000 pound-class penetrator weapon that Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) has begun integrating on the aircraft.

 

The company is doing the work under a seven-month, $2.5 million contract awarded June 1 by the Air Force’s Aeronautical Systems Center, Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio.

The B-2 carries two of these weapons. They’re GPS guided, and can penetrate 200 feet of reinforced concrete or 130 feet of moderately hard rock, making a nasty mess of centrifuges, hex plants etc.

Seven months from July is January 2008.