Extinction Rebellion’s Secret Plan To Remake The World-David Rose

NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT

By Paul Homewood

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As we contemplate the havoc being wrought by the coronavirus, most of us see mainly sickness, death, and economic ruin.

Dr. Rupert Read, spokesman for the climate protest group Extinction Rebellion — plus sometimes Green party candidate and associate professor of philosophy at the University of East Anglia — has rather a different view.

In this pandemic, he writes, ‘there is a huge opportunity for XR… It is essential that we do not let this crisis go to waste.’

Read’s thoughts are set out in a paper entitled ‘Some strategic scenario-scoping of the coronavirus-XR nexus.’ The paper is not meant to be widely read. ‘NB, this is a confidential document for internal XR use, NOT for publication!’ he writes at the head.

Small wonder. After all, says Read, even if the gloomiest projections of national and global mortality turn out to be accurate, ‘the direct risk to…

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Sean Molloy: Covid-19, Emergency Legislation and Sunset Clauses

UK Constitutional Law Association

On 25 March, the UK passed the Coronavirus Act 2020 as part of its attempt to manage the coronavirus outbreak. The Act introduces a wave of temporary measures designed to either amend existing legislative provisions or introduce new statutory powers in order to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 (See Nicholas Clapham’s Conversation post here on the content of Bill). As countries around the world enact similar laws, there are notable concerns regarding not only the impact of emergency provisions on human rights, but also the potential of emergency powers to become normalised. One response is to utilise sunset clauses. This piece argues that while sunset clauses are both welcome and necessary, they should nevertheless be approached with a degree of caution.

Legislation in times of emergency

Following agreement by both Houses of Parliament, the Coronavirus Bill received Royal Assent on 25 March transposing the Bill into primary legislation in…

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The Post-COVID-19 Blueprint (Part 1): How Precaution Failed

The Risk-Monger

My last two articles have highlighted the failures of risk management in the ten weeks leading up to the Western COVID-19 lockdowns where over-reliance on the precautionary principle has left our authorities with limited options leading to a massive denial of social benefits with unfathomable consequences. I want to turn to a more detailed assessment of how risk managers failed with the hope that, once COVID-19 becomes part of history, we will have learnt something. While the horrors of the devastation is still raw, we need to prepare a blueprint for tomorrow. This first section looks at how the precautionary principle failed to function as a credible risk management tool. Part 2 will look at how we can become risk resilient even when our risk managers fail us (how we can perform a “Docilian Detox”). Part 3 will lay down the groundwork for a robust risk management strategy post-COVID-19 to…

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On the Acquittal of Cardinal Pell

Law and Religion Australia

The High Court of Australia, in a unanimous verdict of a 7-member bench, has acquitted Cardinal George Pell of the charges of child sexual abuse for which he has been serving time in prison: see Pell v The Queen[2020] HCA 12 (7 April 2020). He was immediately released.


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More from another @ProfSteveKeen review

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The Sewel convention and Brexit

The Constitution Unit Blog

mcewen-e1527685912390In March, the Constitution Unit co-published a new report, Parliament and Brexit, in which some of the UK’s leading academics examine how parliament has managed Brexit to date, and how it might seek to handle the issue in future. Here, Nicola McEwen discusses how the Sewel convention, which regulates the relationship between the UK Parliament and its devolved counterparts, was put under strain by Brexit.

There are four legislatures in the UK, but only one of these is sovereign. The sovereignty of the Westminster parliament remains one of the most important principles of the UK constitution. Each of the devolution statutes made clear that conferral of law-making powers on the devolved institutions ‘does not affect the power of the Parliament of the United Kingdom to make laws’ for Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales – including in areas of devolved competence. But Westminster’s parliamentary sovereignty is offset by the constitutional convention…

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Why bans on ‘short selling’ are a bad idea

Plain-speaking Economics

It is understandable that people are on the lookout for villains to blame in this time of national crisis – and who better than City ‘fat cats’ who are ‘profiting from the misery of others’? Usually it only takes a moment of serious thought to realise that these attacks are ludicrous. As Tom Bailey explains here, and I discussed here, it is plain daft to criticise investment managers for taking advantage of lower prices to buy shares. But when funds are engaged in ‘short selling’ it may take a little more effort to see the bigger picture.

Short selling is essentially a bet that the price of a financial asset will fall. It traditionally involves the short seller borrowing a parcel of shares or bonds from another investor and then selling them on. The original holder will charge a fee for this, which can be substantial.

At…

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Are Anarcho-Capitalists Insane? Medieval Icelandic Living Standards in Comparative Perspective

Vincent Geloso

Along with Peter Leeson, I have a new working paper. In this paper, we empirically revisit the 1979 seminal paper of David Friedman in the Journal of Legal Studies regarding the law and economics of Iceland between 900 and 1262. The case is important because Iceland constitutes the first example in the literature on the economics of anarchy of how governance is a good that can privately be produced and with competition between providers. For nearly three centuries, Iceland was without a formal state (with a monopoly on violence) even though it was home to nearly one hundred thousands individuals. However, sustained private provision does not mean that the outcomes are superior than under formal governance. We decided to see whether Icelanders enjoyed living standards above the rest of Medieval Europe. The paper is available here on my website and the abstract is below:

Medieval Iceland was governed privately. Other…

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THE CHURCHILL FACTOR: HOW ONE MAN MADE HISTORY by Boris Johnson

Doc's Books

(English Prime Minister Winston Churchill, August 27, 1941)

If you are looking for a personal, breezy hagiography of Winston Churchill then Boris Johnson’s THE CHURCHILL FACTOR: HOW ONE MAN MADE HISTORY will be of interest.  Johnson’s effort is not a traditional biography of the former occupant of 10 Downing Street, but a manifesto imploring the reader to consider the genius and greatness of Churchill.  Johnson is concerned that as time has passed fewer and fewer of the non-World War II generation have forgotten or are not aware of Churchill’s accomplishments as he states at the outset “we are losing those who can remember the sound of his voice, and I worry that we are in danger….of forgetting the scale of what he did.”  For the author, World War II would have been lost, if not for Churchill, and he further argues that the resident of Chartwell House and Blenheim Palace…

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THE SPLENDID AND THE VILE: A SAGA OF CHURCHILL, FAMILY, AND DEFIANCE DURING THE BLITZ by Erik Larson

Doc's Books

Standing out of the flames and smoke of surrounding blazing buildings, St Paul's Cathedral during the great fire raid in London.

(The bombing of London during the WWII “Blitz”)

Living at a time when leadership seems to be severely lacking with a president who enacts his personal agenda seemingly on a daily basis when people are dying is eye opening and ultimately a tragedy.  In times like this it is important to examine historical leadership that is grounded in fact and strength of personality.  Leadership during times of crisis is of the utmost importance be it a pandemic, wartime, economic or weather-related catastrophes.  The public needs to rely on someone to step up and provide honest and factual information with direction to mitigate people’s anxiety and provide hope for the future.  Examining the aerial atrocities committed by the Germans during World War II over London, Coventry and other English cities in late 1940 and early 1941 is a case in point.  Winston Churchill the newly appointed Prime Minister would rise to…

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NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT

“We do not believe any group of men adequate enough or wise enough to operate without scrutiny or without criticism. We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it, that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. We know that in secrecy error undetected will flourish and subvert”. - J Robert Oppenheimer.

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