Monday, November 15, 2004
Here's an interesting article by one Colin Shea about election irregularities in the US. It seems though that the reported overvote in some Ohio counties has resulted from spreading out absentee ballots evenly across pretincts. I'll probably ask "J" to post something here on the US elections.
Anyway, if there was election fraud (which might well be the case) it'll probably never reach the surface, and if it does, it won't help the US left much. Kerry's Iraq policy would not be that different from Bush but having Kerry as president would allow the right to snipe at the Democrats and probably by extension most of progressive America for the mistakes that their own favourite idiot made. Four more years of Bush, though, is for more years of the Republican US digging its own grave.
Michael Fitzpatrick at Spiked has a good article about the passive smoking myth. It sounds pretty impressive that regular "passive smoking" increases your chance of getting lung cancer with some fifteen or twenty percent - but a lot less impressive when you know that the base chance of getting lung cancer (for a non-smoker) is so minute that the elevated chance is just hovering on the edge of statistical significance. I especially like Fitzpatrick's closing words:
"For the anti-smoking zealots, the loss of civil liberties resulting from their widening range of bans and proscriptions is justified by the anticipated health gain. Yet, as the great microbiologist Rene Dubos observed, health should not be considered an end in itself, but as 'the condition best suited to reach goals that each individual formulates for himself' (26). By curtailing the autonomy of the self-determining individual, authoritarian public health policies infantilise society, weaken democracy and diminish humanity."
Amen to that.
In other news, madness in the Netherlands continues, with another attempted arson attack on a mosque yesterday. Also, some retards in Dokkum, Friesland, tried to set fire to a local school, adorning it with white power signs, etc. The thing is that it was a Public school, named after a famous Frisian socialist (Pieter Jelles Troelstra). Either these guys are too dim-witted to actually find a real islamic school to attack and therefore go for the second best alternative, or they're disgruntled pupils burning down their own school. Perhaps both.