lev.lafayette's blog

Memories of Reluctant Advocacy : Asylum Seekers

It was about fifteen ago I attended a fundraising quiz night for an asylum seeker advocacy group at Trades Hall, following a report on the detention centre in Woomera [1]. The quiz night raised a few hundred dollars from the assorted (mainly) student activists. However a couple of days prior to the event I had been doing some additional work; I was able to announce pledges from state Labor MPs for over two thousand dollars.

Property is not so simple

Matt Malesky "Now, legal plunder can be committed in an infinite number of ways. Thus we have an infinite number of plans for organizing it: tariffs, protection, benefits, subsidies, encouragements, progressive taxation, public schools, guaranteed jobs, guaranteed profits, minimum wages, a right to relief, a right to the tools of labor, free credit, and so on, and so on. All these plans as a whole --with their common aim of legal plunder -- constitute socialism."
~ Frederic Bastiat

The Worst Secular Argument Against Marriage Equality

There are a number of bad religious arguments against legal marriage equality founded in unprovable metaphysical speculations (mostly on proposals of divine authorship of holy books), but perhaps the worst secular argument is the suggestion that marriage should be reserved for couples capable of breeding. The Prime Minister of Australia in 2003, John Howard, expressed this attitude when he stated:

The Idiot Wind Blows No Good

Idiot wind, blowing every time you move your mouth
Blowing down the backroads headin' south
Idiot wind, blowing every time you move your teeth
You're an idiot, babe
It's a wonder that you still know how to breathe

Groupthink and Unpopular Truths Among The Socialists

Several months ago I recently engaged in an initially slightly cheeky (FB) response to an IS (International Socialists) advocate on Facebook. The article itself was a rather idealistic perspective that Lenin's approach to party organisation is what led the Bolsheviks not to fall into line (as other social democratic parties) into supporting their national capitalist classes in the First World War and lead a succesful revolution.

Tom Elliot on socialists and the Soviet Union

Tom Elliot, like many who engage in yellow journalism, recently wrote a screed decrying socialists who opposed the bigoted "Reclaim Australia" rallies. His article, of particularly low calibre, raised the hoary old suggestion that these wicked socialists should experience the Soviet Union to find out what the world was really like then.

The following is a response, emailed directly to him.

Nanosocialism From Free Information and the Natural Commonwealth

In the broadest and most practical sense, nanotechnology is the manipulation of matter on a very small scale - a nanometre being 10^-9 metres. The utopian goal is the manipulation of atoms or molecules for the fabrication of products (molecular nanotechnology).

You Do Not Labor In Vain

Man, having the gift of speech and the sense of right and wrong, is by nature a political animal.
- Artistotle, Politics, Book I

No Time for Nap Time

This Saturday is the opportunity for Victorians to rid themselves of the Napthine government, which has managed to be bumbling and boorish. But before voting it is worth remembering what the the past four years have been like - and a final reminder of in whose interests they are governing.

An Encounter with An Anti-Vaccinator and the Issue of Scientific Literacy

On Sunday June 23, 2014 Charles Lazelle posted to Facebook an article claiming that herd immunity had been disproven. Whilst Lazelle was clearly not a good advocate for the anti-vaccination cause, for a first discussion with such individuals it was interesting insofar that it revealed some of the mindset of some anti-vaccination thinkers some of which can be summarised as follows.

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