Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Assorted Wanderings Through a Decaying Forest

You should be eating butter anyways

The controversy over the colour of margarine in Quebec turns brown. I stick to my initial assessment of the situation and reiterate my previous comment: citizens in Quebec are apparently too stupid to read labels. The 'logical' answer in a statist culture is for the central government to force compliance according to the flavour of the day.

An interprovincial panel has determined that Quebec must open its borders to butter-coloured margarine by Sept. 1, a ruling that will apparently end one of Canada's most enduring ... internal trade disputes.

.... The June 23 ruling made public Monday, found Quebec's ban on butter-coloured margarine “impaired and caused injury to margarine producers and their upstream suppliers,” and is expected to end a trade dispute traceable to the 19th century, when margarine was banned entirely in Canada.
The Eclectic Econoclast also wades into the simulated zone.

Too many noxious fumes from all those barbeques

A private clinic is to open for cancer patients in Ontario, and the bloodhounds completely miss the point in their quest for the sanction of the mindless. Jay Jardine provides a summation of the situation:
Instead of pointing out the immorality of the Future of Medicare Act of 2004, and encouraging even more flouting of this so-called Law, the Conservatives are content to wind up the mob with charges of Liberal "hypocrisy". This intellectual cowardice is on display with just about any issue you could care to follow.
Six decades later...

Sorry we killed you, say members of the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles.

More windfalls for lawyers

With same sex marriage comes same sex adultery.

God likened to man-made wars

From The Guardian:
``I can only imagine that this is what Hiroshima looked like 60 years ago,'' said Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour after touring the destruction by air Tuesday.
And Colby Cosh on Hurricane Katrina:
. . . the global-warming crowd has, according to Glenn Reynolds, come out on cue to blame climate change for Hurricane Katrina. Ironically, if this premise is accepted, it can easily be turned on its head by the Lomborgians as a powerful demonstration that industrial democracies should be reducing their structural vulnerability to the effects of climate change rather than taking futile symbolic actions to prevent it. Did New Orleans do enough to prepare for a disaster that was more or less inevitable (and acknowledged as such even under formerly existing climatic conditions)? The way the Louisiana highway system was re-engineered on the fly to permit car owners to flee was an extremely impressive display of American genius. However, it is hard to deny that many of the poor were "left to drown" under the emergency arrangements. And yet again, it's equally hard to imagine a more practical way to provide for them than the one New Orleans was forced to adopt in extremis--namely, throwing open the doors of the Superdome and hoping that it wouldn't be totally destroyed by the storm. I speak here as someone too broke to own a car: should there be buses on standby for 30,000 people like me throughout the summer in New Orleans?

However these debates turn out, there is likely to be more attention paid to the wisdom of public policy that persuades people to live in areas that are certain to be flattened or washed away every 20-60 years or so.

[..] I admit that New Orleans has a long history, and that this point may be more applicable to Gulfport or Biloxi. There will be overwhelming public sentiment in favour of rebuilding New Orleans exactly as it was before it went completely to hell. But my sense is that the city didn't catch an unlucky break on Tuesday; it caught some ordinary luck after decades of the exceedingly good kind.

1 Comment:

Publius said...

Excellent post and intriguing format. Yet, somehow, strangely familiar.... ;-)