Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Budget Special - An Inspector Calls

In plans announced by Tory HQ, today, a future David Cameron government has pledged to ration, regulate, and tax the emissions of perhaps the worst global warming gas of all, and all for our own good. Yep, that's right folks, a vast new bureaucracy, self-funding from ration stamp charges issued in pursuance of said gas, and monitored through the aid of 'personal ration cards', entirely unlike internal passport ID cards, will be created to take charge of everyone's trouser burps. A Tory spokesman said:
"Methane is approximately 100 times powerful as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and as such, I don't think it's too much to ask the British people to put their bottoms where their mouths are, and allow us to tax their gaseous emissions. Obviously, there will be a tax free allowance, but if you're a bit of a porker or a Guinness bloater, you'll be forced to pay for your own excess for every blast over the limit; you'll have no-one to blame but yourself. We will create a self-funding agency, independent of government, to monitor the situation, and special trousers will be licensed to trap and measure the rear-end exhalations of everyone, to ensure they're obeying their gaseous ration limit. As the party of the individual, we want everyone to pay for their individual acts of flatulence. Oh, and yeah, the effects on global warming are devastating, apparently."
Gordon Brown announced that David Cameron's plans were preposterous. He instead announced that he will introduce all of the same bureaucracy, and licensed trouser manufacturer subsidies, obviously, but instead of a ration, he will simply charge each taxpayer on a "Pay as you Pump" basis. In a visionary green paper, he proposed the following examples as in line with his plans for the new charges:

Air Poop - Ten pence
Easing Springs - Twenty pence
Back Blast - Fifty pence
Cheese Toasty - £1
Silent But Deadly - £2.37
Space Shuttle Launch - £2.38
Guinness Gazumpa - £18.50

In a further move, Brown announced that anyone caught eating boiled eggs and cheese on the same day will also be asked to call the police and pay a £400 special monitoring charge. In part of the same enabling act, the same vast bureaucracy will also be charged with monitoring individual travel mileages.

Through The Looking Glass

Do you notice anything strange about the two following sets of photos? Let's start with set one, from China:
China 20 years agoChina today

Compare the China set above with a related photo set from New York, below:
New York 20 years agoNew York today

Yes, that's right. We have a bicycling communist nation emerging into motorized capitalism, followed by a motorized capitalist nation emerging into...well, what exactly? Bicycling environmentalism? Well, while wearing a good set of Maturin glasses (patent unapplied for), it seems fairly obvious what the conclusion to all this might be:

Environmentalism really is Communism

Sunday, March 18, 2007

John Locke? You've Got to be Kidding Me!

Okay, so my apologies for not posting anything about the 101 statist things that happened this week, from David Cameron's approval of new measures to introduce a mileage police into Britain and Gordon Brown's rejoinder, to outflank David Miliband, by telling the productive third of Britain that we will be taxed into the ground forever, and that apparently this is for our benefit.

In some ways, I think the news is now so hilariously statist that it's hardly worth commenting upon, plus, if I were to respond in depth to each statist progression, I would hardly have time to order a double vodka and tonic at any bar near Paddington railway station, the seat of modern Gods in western London. Perhaps it really does take a gigantic blog like Samizdata to deal with it all.

However, following my earlier piece on the amazing similarity between Man, Economy, and State, by Uncle Murray, and the Robinsoe Crusoesque aspects of my favorite TV series Lost, I was almost apoplectic in hilarity with my sudden realisation that that my second favourite character was not only called 'Locke', but was actually called 'John Locke'. Am I the only person in the world who didn't realise this?

Ok, I thought, this was a mere second coincidence. But at the end of the same programme, my favourite character, Sawyer, was sitting on a beach reading a washed-up copy of a particular paperback novel.

Now; it could have been any paperback in the world, from Harold Robbins, a Great according to Mr Spock, through to one by J.K.Rowling, one of the Greats, according to Stephen King. But what was this book Sawyer was reading?

Yes, it was of course, Fountainhead, by Ms. Ayn Rand. Oh yes, we noticed, fellas, though I don't believe many will have, except real Lost nuts. But what the heck. It was worth the entrance fee; three coincidences is just one too many to hold up - it would appear that 'Lost' really might be a libertarian-inspired conspiracy.

OK, so guys, you, the ones writing 'Lost', if you are really true believers, as I truly suspect you are, I don't ask much. But could you please make the next book that comes into shot a certain favourite of mine. I think you know the one I mean. Yes, fellas, it really does have to be: 'Democracy: The God That Failed'. If you can just do this one small favour for me I will be greatly impressed, even though you've cast a Hobbit in one of the main action roles.

However, in the meantime, thank you for introducing Robinson Crusoe economics to the general population, plus a character by the name of John Locke, plus a star reading Fountainhead. I hope you guys are making a fortune, and that your love lives are unbelievably complicated. Thank you, and goodnight. Your efforts have not gone unrecognised! :-)

A. Fan

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Sean Bean - A Gentleman

I couldn't let today pass without a little word about Mr Sean Bean, and his latest film, Outlaw, which I must go and see at the earliest opportunity.

I heard Mr Bean say something similar to the following, on a television program this morning:

"When Tony Blair came into power ten years ago, many of us hoped that everything was going to change for the better. How wrong we were. Nothing has improved, and in many ways, lots of things have regressed."
Top quality, Mr Bean. Welcome to Maturin World. You are now officially a Maturin Hero. (And being heavily linked to Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings does you little harm you, either.)

The Happiness of the Long Distance Libertarian

Ok, so it's a little spurious, but a pet theory of mine is that Libertarians are far happier than Socialists. Why do I think this? Well, firstly, we have a better sense of humour; and Christ knows, with the amount of socialism in the world, we need it. But think about it. If you're a socialist, even a well-paid Professor of Gravy-Train studies at the University of Rent-Seeking, Brussels, you spend your whole time angry about everything. You're angry about McDonalds, Coca Cola, iPods, City bonuses, First Great Western, advertising, cars, airlines, first class travel (especially when your academic or civil service rank doesn't qualify for it), BUPA adverts, Hollywood Comedy films, whatever.

However, I am merely angry about First Great Western, and their slavish adherence to Department of Transport policies and their love of days, such as today, when they can claim maximum compliance against government timetabling targets, due to government firemen closing the entire line out of Paddington for three hours, to save any of them risking getting slightly warm, thereby enabling First Great Western to disavow themselves of all lateness problems for an entire 24 hour period - Maximum lateness, minimum blame, what a great day - customer service stood entirely on its head due to government induced targetitis.

Yes, I am angry about that. Well, not really. I had a Ralph Raico lecture to listen to on the delayed train to Penzance, and the Greatest of all living Austrian Professors always knows how to make me laugh out loud, even on a train which was so crowded I was almost unable to open my usual gin and tonic, due to feckless non-First Class passengers filling up my carriage with their copies of the Guardian.

And as for the rest, so long as the bastards don't ever bring my family into it, socialism is such a joke, it's hardly worth getting angry about - it's much better just to laugh at all of these incompetent arrogant fools and their hilarious never-ending cacophony of failed attempts to plan an economy.

To be a Libertarian is to smile 80% of the time and scowl 20% of the time. To be a socialist is to smile 20% of the time (when Gordon Brown announces another fabulous initiative) and to scowl 80% of the time.

Thank God I'm a Libertarian.