We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Israel’s oil reserves

Surfing on the blogs, I came across this item that I have not seen anywhere else. Israel has, potentially, some pretty handy oil resources.

Wow, better tell Halliburton & all those nasty right-wing neocons and advise them to cook up some fake reason for invading the place…

This article has more.

Samizdata quote of the day

(Seriously, apart from the mobile phone, is there any invention that is more empowering for people in poor countries than the motorcycle?)

– Michael Jennings parenthesises during the early stages of a piece about taxis the world over and about taxis in Vietnam in particular. Transport Blog has been in a coma of late, but it is now showing definite signs of renewed life.

Liquids on aircraft

This news story, if it turns out to be accurate, should cheer up the retailers of booze at airports.

Samizdata quote of the day

“Of course Peregrine Worsthorne is sane. He is just a typical example of the sort of châteaux bottled shit that floats at certain rarefied levels of British society exuding a miasma of highly articulate ignorance from every orifice.”

– Our own Perry de Havilland, writing in response to my less-than-awestruck view of Worsthorne, an ageing Tory paternalist.

So many triomphs

Paris, France.

Bucharest, Romania. July 2010.

Bender, Transnistria. August 2010

Chisinau, Modova. August 2010

Vientiane, Laos. October 2010

The peasants are revolting

Initially, when I saw the article, I wondered what on earth the editorial honchos at the Spectator Coffee House blog were doing in allowing this piece of invective to be published about the Tea Party movement in the US. But maybe those guys are actually being very smart, since the article is so bad, so unhinged, that it bears out the truth of what this Daily Telegraph columnist argues, which is that a large chunk of liberal (in the US sense) opinion is in total denial about what the Tea Party movement is about. It is just not within their mental frame of reference to comprehend ordinary voters rebelling about having to pay higher taxes for higher spending. (“But darling, how can the little people be so ungrateful?”).

The Coffee House article tries to dismiss the TP movement is nothing more than a front for religious extremism. Now I don’t particularly care for religion and as regulars will know, I tend to regard the separation of church and state as being one of the good things about the US, although the idea of such separation is not explicitly called for in the US Constitution.

But what the author of the Spectator Coffee House piece does not ask is this: if some of the Tea Partiers are playing fast and loose with American history, then are not the supporters of Mr Obama, and the bailouts, and the money printing of the Fed, also taking liberties with the intentions of the Founders? And that, surely, is what this is all about. The anger that is felt across the US among ordinary people is that their country is being bent out of shape by a group of people who hold them in contempt.

Samizdata quote of the day

When I attack the concept of ‘Biodiversity’ – and note the inverted commas, that’s kind of key – I’m not voting, as the eco-fascist would-be suicide bomber James Lee so touchingly put it, against “The Lions, Tigers, Giraffes, Elephants, Froggies, Turtles, Apes, Raccoons, Beetles, Ants, Sharks, Bears, and, of course, the Squirrels.” What I’m railing against is the way a noble-seeming concept has been subverted by the watermelons of the green movement in exactly the same way as “Climate change” has and with precisely the same aims: to extend the powers of government; to raise taxes; to weaken the capitalist system; to curtail personal freedom; to redistribute income; to bring ever-closer the advent of an eco-fascist New World Order.

I’ve got nothing against biodiversity. But I’ve an awful lot against “Biodiversity.”

Delingpole, having done so much damage to the last Big Green Thing (see posting below), turns his guns onto the next one. But will Greenery of any kind now be trusted enough to serve as the next big excuse for global statism?

Ross McKitrick on the Hockey Stick

Do you have seven and a half minutes to spare out of your crowded, creative, busy life? I recommend that you find it, and watch this bit of video, now conveniently viewable at Bishop Hill, this video being … well, see the title of this posting.

Of it, the good Bishop says:

This was posted in the comments on WUWT. I’m not sure if it’s recent or not, but it hasn’t been on YouTube for long. I’ve never seen it before.

Me neither. It’s as good a short summary of the whole Hockey Stick furore (Bishop Hill’s book about it all being a much longer version of the same story), what it is, why it matters, and so on, as you could hope to find.

The content of this snatch of video is impressive, of course. But I especially love McKitrick’s calm tone of voice and measured manner.

How those climate warmists must hate the internet. They’re still at it, by the way.

Samizdata groaner of the day

Why do communists only drink herbal tea?

Because proper tea is theft.

Samizdata quote of the day

The credit which the apparent conformity with recognized scientific standards can gain for seemingly simple but false theories may, as the present instance shows, have grave consequences.

Frederic Hayek

Because libertarians would totally have been up for that stuff

More up-to-the-second analysis from the fourth estate:

Dennis, a wealthy businessman and investor who says he’s been a Republican for more than 25 years, has a strong libertarian streak and supported Rep. Ron Paul in the 2008 presidential race. But ask him how he would have voted on the most important bills that came before the House in the last two years and you’ll get a pretty Republican answer. Obamacare? He would have voted against it. Stimulus? Against. Auto bailouts? Against. Cap and trade? Against. Wall Street reform? Against. He also favors making all the Bush tax cuts permanent.

Byron York apparently does not understand Libertarianism.

(H/t: Drudge)

One of the world’s smartest economic thinkers in London

Well that was not very clever of me, was it? I got the wrong de Soto in the original posting here, which I have taken down to avoid confusion. My apologies for the first poster who told me it was wrong. Ugh. Grovel-grovel.

Here is the event, anyway. I strongly recommend people to go if they get the chance. I will be.