Saturday, November 21, 2009

Two links to other blog posts

Declassified Documents #4: Heath was warned that EMU plan could herald European superstate


Dissolving the personal union

An article has appeared in today's Sydney Morning Herald suggesting that Australia should elect another member of the House of Windsor to be our King, separate and distinct from Her Majesty (though, in order to assure a smooth succession, I daresay that the dissolution would not occur until the passing of the incumbent monarch, be it Her Majesty, or her heir, Prince Charles (whether he's Charles III or George VII remains to be seen)).

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Democracy is no protection

No king or queen would ever have allowed any of this.

Europeans Meet (Soviet-Style) to Choose First-Ever EU President

In what has been described as a “slow-moving coup d’état,” Europe over the past several decades has experienced a gradual but significant shift in political power away from individual nation states towards an unelected and unaccountable bureaucracy based in Brussels.

Today, these so-called Eurocrats oversee more than 100,000 pages of EU legislation, much of which has primacy over national legislation and parliaments. Indeed, unelected bureaucrats in Brussels now exercise so much power that they dictate what elected leaders can or cannot do in more than 30 policy areas.

In 2004, European federalists moved to consolidate their power by means of the “European Constitution,” which, among many other things, called for abolishing the national veto in more than 50 additional policy areas. But the ratification process ran into a roadblock in May and June 2005, when French and Dutch voters rejected the document.

Predictably, the authors of the European Constitution were unwilling to let democracy get in the way of their federal ambitions. Instead, they essentially shuffled some of the words, sentences and paragraphs of the document and reissued it in December 2007 as the Lisbon Treaty, in order “to avoid having referendums.”

The Lisbon Treaty, which obligates EU nations to surrender their sovereignty in many areas to centralized decision-making, was supposed to have been quietly rubber-stamped by the parliaments of all member states by the end of 2008. But once again, democracy got in the way, this time thanks to Ireland, where the constitution mandated a popular referendum.

Indeed, Ireland, which accounts for 1 percent of the European Union’s 500 million population, was the only EU member state to put the Lisbon Treaty to a referendum. And sure enough, in June 2008, Irish voters soundly rejected the document.

Unsurprisingly, the Brussels elite were outraged at the audacity of the Irish insubordination and demanded that Ireland hold a second referendum, one that would produce the “correct” answer. EU Thought Police were dispatched to warn the “extremely arrogant” Irish voters of the dire consequences they would face in the event of another ‘no’ vote. In October 2009, Irish voters succumbed to the pressure and produced the desired result.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

No to the Schwarzenegger Amendment

Social life is fraught with peril these days. I'm on a lot of mls for my various hobbies, most of which are utterly nonpolitical. However, just now, someone posted a political editorial he wrote and hopes to publish in the local paper to one of these hobby mls. It has nothing whatever to do with the hobby, he just wanted to tell everyone his opinion.

The gist of the article is, we should ignore the evidence that Obama is not a natural-born citizen of the U.S. and is thus ineligible for the office he is so ineptly holding because America is supposed to be a meritocracy, so our head of state should be the most qualified person who wants to be, whether they were born here or not.

I guess it would be mean of me to email back pointing out that if Obama is indeed foreign born, this makes him guilty of fraud, and I think most people are still sane enough not to want someone who has committed fraud to be a head of state.

Part of his motivation in writing this, he tells us, is that he adopted a foreign child and wishes to make sure that when she grows up, she won't be "excluded" from the opportunity to become president.

We have come to a pass when we consider it unjust that anyone might be "excluded" from holding the most powerful position on earth!

What we need nowadays is a lot more exclusivity.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

More disturbing looks at the voting mind

Five-year-olds can predict election outcomes based on photos of the candidates. We can even guess whether a face belongs to a Democrat or a Republican at a rate better than chance, according to a forthcoming study out of Princeton.


Source. The latter study doesn't surprise me at all. Back before I was a monarchist, I sometimes worked at the voting polls. The day of a primary election, I found that after just a couple of hours, I could predict with a high degree of accuracy whether I was going to be asked for a Republican or Democratic ballot. Not only are conservatives better dressed, we're also much better looking. I have given credence to the research indicating that political beliefs are at least partly genetic ever since.

The study, conducted by psychologists John Antonakis and Olaf Dalgas at the University of Lausanne in Switzerland, shows that Swiss children as young as five years can predict which candidates are more likely to win French parliamentary elections.

This finding contributes to a large and growing body of evidence, coming from many research groups, which shows that voters seem to be heavily influenced by a candidate’s appearance, and in particular the kinds of personality traits that a politician’s face projects. This result is strange considering the political stakes. We may agree that one candidate looks more approachable or intelligent than another, but why do we then allow these superficial impressions to guide our political preferences?


Source.

If you think about it, voting in a large national election – such as the US Presidential election – is a supremely irrational act, because the probability that your vote will make a difference in the outcome is infinitesimally small. The closest Presidential election in history was the 1960 contest between John F. Kennedy and Richard M. Nixon. In that election, Kennedy’s margin in the popular vote over Nixon was 118,574. Disregarding for the moment the complexity of the electoral college system, it means that the probability that any one voter will influence the outcome of the 1960 election was 1/118,574 = .00000843355.


Why Do People Vote?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Prince Albert II sues alleged spymaster

Monaco palace says it's suing alleged spymaster

PARIS — A French lawyer says Monaco's Prince Albert II is filing a lawsuit in the U.S. against an American who claims he once worked as the prince's personal spymaster and is owed back pay.

The palace says that claims by Robert Eringer "smear" the image of the ruling prince and the reputation of Monaco. Lawyer Thierry Lacoste says the prince is suing.

Eringer claims in an interview in this week's Paris Match magazine that he worked for Albert from 2002 to 2007, keeping the prince abreast of potentially shady figures. Paris Match shows a photo of an ID card for the "Monaco Intelligence Service," or MIS, carrying Eringer's picture and number — 001. Its authenticity couldn't be established.

The palace said Friday that MIS has no "legal existence."