I've not had much time for the old blog recently, due to being away from the internet. But a quick roundup.
Regular commenter and friend of this site, John, now has his own blog and very good it appears to be as well. It focuses on economics and cooperatives and is very well researched and full of interesting references.
Animal Rights, Logical Wrongs
You'd normally think that someone who brags about eating at Macdonalds would be someone highly unlikely to take animal welfare seriously. Or for that matter to think that anyone would respect their views on that topic.
But you would be unfamiliar with Johann Hari, who as per usual suffers no doubts that he has both the moral high ground and an unquestioning audience who will gulp down his every word.
I think sadly he is correct on the second one. As it is, I'm against Kosher and Halal slaughtering, and don't need the words of someone who stuffs their face with battery farmed chicken to bring me to this conclusion. But when you are sure of your own rightness as Hari is, the suffering of people is as beside the point as the suffering of animals:
'You can cry that we are "persecuting" you if we stop you committing acts of cruelty if you want.
It's what the religious – Christian, Jew and Muslim alike – did when we stopped you tormenting women and gays and anybody else you could get your hands on. One of the great markers of the advance of human kindness is that the howls you will hear are from the Men of God.'
Really? So glad to hear that Soviet Russia, Vietnam and Cambodia achieved such pinnacles of human kindness. And of course Iraq is no doubt becoming more kind now that Christians are getting massacred, courtesy of an invasion Hari supported. Still, this will be beside the point for the hysterical New Atheists who share so much in common with the American fundamentalists who can turn their eyes from the misdeeds of their televangelist heroes to revel in self-righteousness.
Been so Long
Neo-conservatism has the unlikely advantage that it makes so many gross errors that audiences struggle to keep track of them. Everyone knows Iraq was a disaster, but, uhm, that place in Europe they invaded over a decade ago, guess that must have been a righteous war since we hear so little about it, right? Wrong.