Thursday, June 19, 2008

Drilling in the ANWR

What with gas prices being high, the issue of drilling in ANWR has come back to prominence, particularly because McCain's lack of support for the idea has angered many Republicans. In particular, The Corner has been harping on this for a few days. There's one thing about the discussion that's particularly bizarre, and while I've been proscrastinating on posting about this, Ana Marie Cox noticed too:
One of the helpful myths that keeps that idea alive irks me to distraction: The idea that it's okay to drill in ANWR because it isn't pretty. (Jonah Goldberg is a real leader in this field, having mined this particular "mosquito-plagued tundra" since 2001.)

Bush was a big part of this too, arguing that ANWR is a "great white nothing." But the more recent discussion gets even weirder. The Cornerites have been falling overthemselves in contrasting ANWR and the Grand Canyon. This initially came up because McCain said he opposed drilling in ANWR for the same reasons he would oppose drilling in the Grand Canyon: because they should both be kept pristine. Fine, good answer. But then the Cornerites threw up a million posts discussing how many visitors ANWR gets compared with the Grand Canyon, etc. Are they stupid, or just disingenuous? Whether ANWR is a nice tourist attraction is not only not the point, the whole idea is that ANWR should be as free as possible from human intrusion and development.

The other thing that gets me is that even most supporters of drilling in ANWR now acknowledge that such a drilling scheme would only go a very small way towards shoring up America's oil supply, but they still think it should be done. Why? My guess is that they now see the whole ANWR controvery as a right-versus-left issue and that they simply want to win the argument.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Scientology and Free Speech

C4 had an interesting report on a disturbing trend in the UK. Police are cracking down on critics of Scientology. One man was prosecuted for using the word 'cult' in a placard, but he won the case. You still can't use the words 'evil' or 'brain-washed' without fear of arrest.



Via Ben Goldacre.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Cycling Route Planner

A cycling route planner for Greater Vancouver is now in beta-testing. Check it out. Other than a few bugs, it seems to do a good job. Has some nice adjustable parameters like maximum slope and speed, and inclusion or exclusion of major roads.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Obama channels Cuomo?

Yeah, Fox News isn't even trying anymore.

Via Sullivan.

Meet Thomas Sowell, Wanker

Every once in a while I hear someone refer to Thomas Sowell as one of the great political and economic thinkers of our time. Now, I'm no expert on Sowell, but this garbage tells you a lot about him:
At a time like this, we do not have the luxury of waiting for our ideal candidate or of indulging our emotions by voting for some third party candidate to show our displeasure — at the cost of putting someone in the White House who is not up to the job.

Senator John McCain has been criticized in this column many times. But, when all is said and done, Senator McCain has not spent decades aiding and abetting people who hate America.

On the contrary, he has paid a huge price for resisting our enemies, even when they held him prisoner and tortured him. The choice between him and Barack Obama should be a no-brainer.

Obama aids and abets people who hate America? What a disgusting, idiotic wanker Sowell is.

Anatomy of a Slander

Meet Larry Johnson, wanker.

Thursday, June 05, 2008