Daily Archives: April 21, 2017

France’s presidential election: A populist front


The Long Road Back (if there is one)

Public Investigations

(GE2017 Post No. 3)

In yesterday’s post I suggested that Jeremy Corbyn would not give up being Labour Leader – even after a crushing defeat – until his succession by another hard-left candidate was assured.

Let’s make two assumptions – Labour get badly defeated in GE2017 and Corbyn does go and is replaced by someone who can start Labour’s climb back. Big assumptions I know, but what would happen then?

Well we have two examples of one of the major Parties suffering a big defeat followed by a – as it turns out very slow – recuperation: Labour in 1979 and the Tories in 1997.

I have compared the number of MPs gained by each Party in their initial big  General Election defeat – Labour 1979 and Tories 1997 – and then at each subsequent election until they regained power. The results do not look pretty.

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BBC ignores another story explaining the need for Gaza border restrictions

BBC Watch

A video currently appearing on the BBC News website’s Middle East page includes the following statements:

“There are strict controls on the movement of goods and people going in and out of Gaza.

Israel and Egypt tightened their blockade after Hamas, a militant group, took control in 2007.”

Similar messaging – often with political overtones – is frequently seen in content provided to BBC audiences.

“Israel and Egypt maintain a blockade around Gaza aimed at preventing attacks by militants there, though the measure has been condemned by rights groups as a form of collective punishment.” BBC News website, February 13th 2017.

“…the stifling border closures the Israeli government says are for security, the people here say are for collective punishment.” BBC World Service radio, February 1st 2017.

“One of the reasons Gaza’s often described as the largest open-air prison in the world is the difficulty of getting across the border…

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Western Kentucky Students Declare Standardized Scores as “White Supremacy” and Demand Free Tuition For Blacks as Reparations


500px-WKU_logo.svgWestern Kentucky University’s Student Government Association has passed a resolution that declares standardized scores as a tool for “white supremacy.”  They also demanded reparations for African-American students by guaranteeing free tuition.

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The biggest gender gap that dare not speak its name

Gender gaps in injuries and fatalities go beyond those industries demanding physical.strength.

accident compensation claims by gender

There are noticeable differences in the occupational choices of single people, parents, and single parents. Women choose safer jobs than men; single moms or dads are most averse to fatal risk because they have the most to lose. About one quarter of occupational differences between men and women can be attributed to the risks of injury and death.

All but 3 of the fatal workplace accidents in New Zealand in 2015 were men.


Source: Accident Compensation Corporation,  Statistics New Zealand.

This gender gap in the risk of injury and death can lead to a significant gender wage gap because of the wage premium associated with these risks and in particular the risk of death as Viscusi explained.

The bottom line is that market forces have a powerful influence on job safety. The $120 billion in annual wage premiums referred to earlier is in addition to the value of workers’ compensation. Workers on moderately risky blue-collar jobs, whose annual risk of getting killed is 1 in 10,000, earn a premium of $300 to $500 per year.

The imputed compensation per “statistical death” (10,000 times $300 to $500) is therefore $3 million to $5 million. Even workers who are not strongly averse to risk and who have voluntarily chosen extremely risky jobs, such as coal miners and firemen, receive compensation on the order of $600,000 per statistical death…

Other evidence that the safety market works comes from the decrease in the riskiness of jobs throughout the century. One would predict that as workers become wealthier they will be less desperate to earn money and will therefore demand more safety.

A German study was able to reduce a raw gender wage gap of 20% to 1% after accounting for differences between gender in the risk of injury and death in addition to the usual factors. This 2007 study found that they were the 2nd study ever to make this adjustment.

Is gender equality legislation counter-productive?

The Ranting Kraut

In Sweden, three-quarters of working men are employed in the private sector, and two-thirds of working women are employed in public services. This industrial segregation of men and women results in massive occupational segregation, and a pay gap no lower than elsewhere in Europe – contrary to Swedish claims. A study by the International Labour Office shows that the Nordic countries have the highest degree of sex segregation in occupations among all OECD countries. The United States has the lowest level within the OECD group, and China has the lowest level in the world. Women are far more likely to reach top management in the US than in Sweden: the glass ceiling is thicker in Sweden, and seems to be a direct consequence of

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