Saturday, November 14, 2009

The majority of voters don't (yet) believe in man-made climate change

Today's Times editorial states that:
"A large proportion of the British public does not yet believe that climate change is made by man. It is a stark political failure that they have not been convinced"
So there you have it. You either believe in man made climate change, or you don't yet believe in man made climate change. There are no true unbelievers. But is it a stark political failure? Maybe the British public are on to something:

For starters, the scientific community is by no means unanimous as to the cause of climate change. Secondly, even those who believe in man made climate change cannot agree to what extent our climate will be effected. And thirdly, voters don't take very well to bullying politicians telling them what to think (especially when it's not clear that clear that even they believe in it).

The British public are not quite as ignorant as politicians imagine them to be. Maybe they should be spend a little more time listening to voters and a little less time listening to "experts".

How much more of the nanny state can we take?

I am beginning to understand why so many Americans equate big government with tyranny. They need only look across the pond to see what a nanny state Britain has become.

Do we really want to live in a country where the police follow you home from the supermarket because they overheard you threatening to smack your children? Or a country where you need a criminal background check just to give your friend's children a lift home from school?

Sorry to use that awful cliche, but the road to hell is paved with good inventions. The Labour government may profess its desire to protect our children, but treating a quarter of the adult population like criminals isn't the way to go about it.

We have a stark choice at the next general election, between a government that is ideologically committed to intruding into every nook and cranny of our lives, and an opposition that is prepared to roll back the nanny state and protect our freedom.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Despite the Fort Hood massacre, America is still safer than Britain

I may have been a little naive, but I never thought that something like the Fort Hood massacre would happen in America. Nevertheless, I stand by what I wrote after the 7/7 bombings, American Muslims are better integrated than their European counterparts:
  • Unlike Britain, America expects its immigrants to integrate as a condition of citizenship. I doubt that America would give sanctuary to members of the Taliban, or to Osama Bin Laden's spiritual ambassador.
  • America doesn't have Britain's self-loathing establishment, it's still a country that for the most part believes in itself and its values.
  • America has a much smaller welfare state. New immigrants are expected to stand on their own two feet and look after themselves, not to rely on the state. A far higher proportion of American muslims have made it to the middle classes compared to their European counterparts. Few languish in urban ghettoes like Rotterdam or Clichy-sous-Bois. Besides, the debate over immigration in the US is about illegal Immigrants from Mexico, not Muslims.
  • Contrary to the Guardian's alarmist headlines, I'm willing to bet money that there will be no backlash against Muslims. Despite the UK liberal establishment's view of Americans being a bunch of homophobic racist rednecks they are actually a pretty tolerant lot. I would feel a lot safer being an American muslim than a British muslim.
However, I would end with note of caution. Before 9/11, Americans were too naive to believe that foreign terrorists would attack their country. Maybe they have also been a little too naive about home grown terrorism. American muslims may be better integrated, but clearly not all of them have signed up to the American dream.