Swimming Pools: Our Children in Danger

In the United States in the period of 2005-2009 there were recorded deaths of 3,533 innocent people in non-boat related unintentional drownings.

Drownings accounted for more than 3,000 deaths between 2005-2009.

There are over 10 million private swimming pools in the United States, that’s roughly one swimming pool for every 35 people! Private swimming pools are often maintained by irresponsible owners, many of whom have small children or entertain guests who are small children, which would explain why a disproportionate number of pool drowning deaths are that of innocent children. Minorities are also at a higher risk of death from drowning in pools, with the CDC recording that the drowning death of a 5-14 year old African American child is three times as likely as that of a white child.

How can such a travesty occur in a modern, developed country like the United States? The answer is the swimming pool culture and lobby.

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The Slow Death of Free Speech

In trawling through the intertubes as I do, I came across an article written by Mark Steyn in The Spectator. Like the Brendan O’Neil article that I shared yesterday, it is a topical article that goes on the attack with regards to modern approaches to Freedom of Speech.

“I heard a lot of that kind of talk during my battles with the Canadian ‘human rights’ commissions a few years ago: of course, we all believe in free speech, but it’s a question of how you ‘strike the balance’, where you ‘draw the line’… which all sounds terribly reasonable and Canadian, and apparently Australian, too. But in reality the point of free speech is for the stuff that’s over the line, and strikingly unbalanced. If free speech is only for polite persons of mild temperament within government-policed parameters, it isn’t free at all. So screw that.”

Full story via The Spectator

Putin’s Persistence: The Ukrainian Crisis

Almost two months into the Ukrainian Crisis, and a diplomatic stalemate has ensued. Neither side wants to back down, and both want to return to normalised relations. Russia has gotten away with violating Ukraine’s sovereignty once, and is gearing up to do it again. Though will the West appease Russia’s whims? Can further escalation be avoided?

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The Future of The Lion’s Den

The bloody Syrian Civil War has raged for over 3 years, and as it creeps on and on it is becoming more and more plausible that Bashar al-Assad will prevail. However, and this may be a bit controversial, it is quite possible that this could be the best result.


A current map detailing the ownership of Syria by various groups, via The Economist


Despite the fact that Bashar al-Assad rules Syria as an autocrat, compared to how Ba’athist dictators go, such as his father, and the likes of Saddam Hussein, as well as Middle Eastern governments as a whole, al-Assad’s rule has been one of the less brutal and repressive, though it is a shame that that quality is cause for praise.

Originally pursuing a life of ophthalmology, Bashar al-Assad was never interested in political or military affairs, and it was only through the untimely death of his elder brother that the younger al-Assad was made heir apparent by his father. In the six and a half years prior to Hafez al-Assad’s death in 2000, Bashar was put through the military academy at Homs and rose through the ranks very quickly, while older officers who might pose a threat to the transference of power were pushed into retirement, and other officers loyal to the Assad family were promoted to ensure stability within the armed forces.

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The Endangered Political Species

I’ve always been a great admirer of Senator George Brandis QC, having had the privilege of meeting him on a number of occassions and hearing a lecture he delivered at the University of Queensland last year (my notes of which are lost somewhere in the confusing mess of terror that is My Documents), and it fills me with such hope that we have politicians, and more importantly an Attorney-General, like Sen. Brandis who stand ready to take on the media, the Leftists, nanny-staters, and even those from within the ranks of the Coalition, in order to deliver enhanced Freedom of Speech to all Australians.

This admiration of Sen. Brandis meant that I was captivated by an article written by none other than Brendan O’Neil, of which some of you may or may not have already read. I highly recommend it, just in the first paragraph I was hooked:

“Ever since Captain Cook set foot here, Australia’s exotic creatures have wowed the rest of the world. Mammals that lay eggs! Marsupials that hop! Well today, Australia contains what must surely count as the most exotic, rarely sighted creature of the twenty-first century: a politician who believes in freedom of speech. Extinct in Europe, seriously endangered in America, this most hunted of the modern era’s political beasts still survives Down Under, and it goes by the name of George Brandis.”

It’s a great piece about a very important issue, so follow the link provided and give it a read.


Having Your Yellowcake and Eating It


One of the greatest concerns of policy makers, corporations, academics, and private citizens is the matter of man’s impact on the environment, increasing scarcity of resources as well as what this bodes for the future and how to address the issue without curtailing economic growth. However, the best solution to this problem has been around for more than half a century.
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The Global Financial Crisis: Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Blame the State

Matt cropped

In the wake of the 2007 Global Financial Crisis, the effects of which still afflict the world, many have been more than willing to blame the crisis on corporate greed, and the banks doing that God-awful thing like make a profit. Sadly, people seem far too reluctant to blame the real perpetrator, the interventionalist economic policies of successive US governments.

The universally accepted cause of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) was the burst of the US housing market asset bubble, as a result of the collapse of the subprime mortgage market starting in 2007. Left-orientated arguments have centred on little more than “banks got too greedy for their own good”, but this is a gross over-simplification that is, frankly, incorrect.
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Cry me a river… Globalisation, Interdependence and Extortion

Matt croppedWith sabre rattling echoing across Europe and the Atlantic, with Russian troo- I mean, Self-Defence Forces seizing points across the Crimea, the world seems to be heading towards a repeat of 1853 in the 100th year of 1914. However, thanks to the evolution of diplomatic relations, and the growth of globalisation, the ghosts of Florence Nightingale and the Light Brigade won’t be crossing into the mortal plane.

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