Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Monday, September 27, 2004
Che of the Dead
Saturday, September 25, 2004
More Iran stuff
Friday, September 24, 2004
You'll probably only find this interesting if you live in Boston
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
A further step along Hayek's road
Treating the symptom
A look inside
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
"It conflicts with the cosmologies..."
An interesting coincidence
Monday, September 20, 2004
Not sure what to make of this
Sunday, September 19, 2004
Arr, or avast, or ahoy
From the feud
For the record, I really don't care about this issue to any extent relative to the election. It doesn't affect who I'll vote for in the slightest, nor does it raise or lower Bush in my estimation. It may end up lowering my view of Dan Rather and CBS, but we'll see.
Saturday, September 18, 2004
The State vs Anarchy
(Note: I am going to write a follow-up to this when I have more time, as it's way too easy to misunderstand what I meant. I seem to come off as an anarchist, which I'm not. - M, 9-21)
Watkins examines anarchism, and pretty much fails to debunk it. Which is unfortunate. I’m not prepared myself to debunk it, but I’ll raise a few points.
First let me say I’m no fan of the UN. However, without it we’d have anarchy between countries. Watkins seems to have no problem with this situation, as he apparently thinks we should have never involved the UN or any other countries in any part of attacking Iraq. How does this square with the following?
The anarchist resents the demand that he prove to others that his use of force is justified – he considers that a violation of his rights. What about the rights of the person he is coercing? Blank out. What about the rights of third parties, who wish to ban the use of force in their society, and would therefore like to know whether the anarchist is initiating force or retaliating? “Take my word for it,” the anarchist says.Take my word for it was almost exactly Bush’s argument. Sometimes he’d argue that we should take Clinton’s word for it, but the general thrust was that he knew and we didn’t and the US doesn’t need anyone’s permission to act.
Watkins appears to agree that a government that doesn’t violate rights is very hard to institute. He argues that this is irrelevant. If the question is if government is in principle just, then he is right, it is irrelevant. However, it is relevant to what choices we make, as we must compare the whole spectrum of possible outcomes that our choices will entail. Let’s stipulate that government can be wholly valid, just, non-coercive; show me that government and I’ll take it. Does it follow that any government is better than anarchy? Does it follow that most government is better? I can’t answer the second question, but surely anarchy would be preferable to living under Stalin or Hitler.
What if an individual does not want to delegate his right of self-defense?” the anarchist frequently asks. “Isn’t that a legitimate aspect of ‘freedom’?” The question implies that a “free man” is one with the right to enact his desire, any desire, simply because it is his desire, including the desire to use force. This means the equation of “freedom” with whim-worship.First, I’m not sure why you get to decide which of my wants and desires are whims and which are legitimate. Secondly, what if the government doesn’t violate rights, doesn’t coerce, but is incompetent? Must I then submit to its rule?
Finally I’ll give a quick sketch of my view of government. All government is coercive, but that doesn’t mean we can’t distinguish between relatively good and bad governments. Anarchy is not a sustainable situation and will yield to government, and often that government will be systematically abusive. There is no final or perfect solution to how much government there should be, as all possibilities have problems. There are patently bad government situations, and we need to avoid those. Generally speaking, small is beautiful. Like I said before, I’ll take a non-coercive, stable, competent government, but show it to me first.
It's funny 'cause it's true
Friday, September 17, 2004
I'm a piker
Wednesday, September 15, 2004
Not as good as the old ones
Ahh, the Patriot Act
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
The Amazin' Barry Bonds and the beguiling Red Sox
Despite the offense's poor performance the last two games, I'm pretty encouraged. In the playoffs we'll probably need a third starter, and Derek Lowe is starting to convince me he's that guy. We'll also need a second good reliever, and I'm now optimistic that Williamson is healthy enough to fill that role, and maybe he'll be great like before. We should be in good shape, and please don't mention even the possibility of catching New York for the division; I don't believe in curses, but jinxes....
Department of Wtf?
A month ago I'd never heard a rapping hobbit...
Not allowing foolish fallacies to flourish
Monday, September 13, 2004
Sunday, September 12, 2004
Know your limits
Why does the BMA think it knows anything about how we should live? It may know that if I live a particular way I'll become unhealthy, but why does it think that it can tell me that I should value my health more than my chosen way of life? What makes its members think that they are in any privileged position to answer questions like that?
The Light of Reason...
Saturday, September 11, 2004
Another 9-11 view
Differing views on September 11
September 11th was a consequence of American appeasement of radical Islam. Our first rule, therefore, must be to avoid appeasement. Inaction, in other words, is the greatest danger we face.
Are appeasement and inaction synonyms?
Oh well, at least he admits some of our foreign policy has been misguided, and even unjustifiable. Wow, quite the strong statement.
You've got to frame the question right
Hopefully Kerry will dramatically improve his campaign over the next month-and-a-half, but right now he's almost all platitude and whining. I will give him every chance I can to win me over, but he's done very little to dispell the notion that he's just a douchebag that people are going to vote for anyway.
An all-too-common mindset
Friday, September 10, 2004
Quick NFL post (my last one...for a little while at least)
And, also, what a great game last night. I sort of predicted Manning's int, and Seth absolutely nailed the missed field goal. Most importantly, the good guys won. Go Pats!
Wednesday, September 08, 2004
Use Two Hands
Best WR: Randy Moss. Feel free to hate him but the guy is best playmaker at the position. He changes how defensive coordinators script their game plan. Moss has an amazing combination of size and speed. All that said, the Bears still made the right choice taking Curtis Enis ahead of Moss in the 1998 NFL Draft.
Worst Crop of WRs: San Diego Chargers. It may not matter who is behind center for the Chargers with this lackluster crop of receivers. By far their best pass catcher is LaDanian Tomlinson who in this offense has to do everything. The consequences of the David Boston signing are still being felt.
WR Most Likely to Break Out: Donte Stallworth. This pick may be rather biased as he is on my fantasy team. So feel free to ignore this selection if you wish. But with Stallworth’s speed this should be the year he joins the top ranks. Also many experts feel that it is in year 3 that wide outs put it together.
WR Most Likely to Regress: Joe Horn. Might be a year too late on this one but Horn is starting to slip. Horn is getting more attention for his antics than his play. Horn has had a nice run as a top wide out, 2004 should continue his decline.
Rookie Most Likely to Make the Biggest Impact: Larry Fitzgerald. It is a banner crop for rookie wide outs that makes this selection difficult. However with Anquan Boldin missing the first half of the season most likely, Fitzgerald should put some solid numbers. As Fitzgerald is still recovering from his own injury, that production may not come in week 1. With the Cardinals having a non-existent running attack, their wide outs will get lots of balls thrown their way.Quick Thoughts: Only the Cubs can play no games over a weekend and still wind up with a hurt guy…I guess the only thing worse than Kevin Brown’s temper is his boxing ability…If only the playoffs were in September, the Red Sox would be golden right now…I think it is a little early to say the Dolphins cured their running woes by acquiring Lamar Gordon…Would it kill the Astros to start losing some games?…For a big guy Sammy Sosa sure does suffer injuries in the weakest of ways…I hope Art Howe is leasing not buying.
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
NFL season preview
New England: Clearly the best team. 'Nuff said. 12-4.
Miami: Losing Ricky Williams won't hurt as badly as people think, partly because he isn't as good as people think, partly because he was used poorly. 9-7.
NY Jets: Pennington's return helps a lot, but they're otherwise a mediocre team. 9-7.
Buffalo: McGahee should help, but they aren't a partucluarly good team. 6-10.
Baltimore: Still great defense, but weak at QB and RB won't be as strong this year. 10-6.
Cincinnati: Using the inexperienced Palmer hurts, and they won't sneak up on anybody this year, but they're still decent. 7-9.
Pittsburgh: Not a good team, but not awful. 6-10.
Cleveland: They should be somewhat better than last year, but not much. 6-10.
Indianapolis: Still a great offense, still a suspect defense. 11-5.
Tennessee: A good, all-around team, but not great. 10-5.
Jacksonville: Look for a small step forward this year. 6-10.
Houston: See Jacksonville. 6-10.
Kansas City: See Indy. 11-5.
Denver: A solid team, but it's hard to get excited when Jake Plummer is involved, even given the good year he had last year. 9-7
Oakland: Should improve somewhat, but they're not playoff-worthy. 6-10.
San Diego: Not a good team, especially with their QB-situation. 5-11.
Philadelphia: One of the best teams around. 11-5.
Dallas: A poor QB situation, and no chance of surprising people. 8-8.
Washington: Joe Gibbs is a great coach, but he's been out of the game for quite a while, so give him time. 6-10.
NY Giants: Apparently Eli Manning looks better than Peyton did, but he's still a rookie, and there will be a transition process. 5-11.
Green Bay: Favre's still good, but he's not winning another title. 9-7.
Minnesota: A good but flawed team. 9-7.
Chicago: Lovie should help, but not immediately. 7-9.
Detroit: Look for a small step forward from Mooch's guys. 6-10.
Carolina: A good team, but still with weaknesses. 10-6.
Atlanta: Vick's return helps, but they need more. 9-7.
Tampa Bay: An ok team. 8-8.
New Orleans: Probably not an awful team, but they're probably the team I know the least about. 7-9.
Seattle: A good team perhaps ready for prime-time. 11-5.
St. Louis: Marc Bulger at QB? eh. 9-7.
San Francisco: A mediocre team, I'm guessing the Ewing Theory keeps them from sucking. 7-9.
Arizona: Denny should help some, but they're still the Cardinals. 5-11.
AFC Playoffs: NE, Baltimore, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Tennessee, NY Jets.
NFC Playoffs: Philadelphia, Green Bay, Carolina, Seattle, Atlanta, Minnesota.
Superbowl: New England over Seattle.