asuffield.myopenid.com

asuffield.myopenid.com

  • Commented on Sitrep
    I concur that it was rather cool and rather exhausting. Alas I did not actually get to say "hi" to Charlie, but I did get to use him for a sound check, which is almost as good....
  • Commented on Crib Sheet: The Apocalypse Codex
    One does not merely "run into" Seph. One experiences her presence. It could be interesting to see this world from Mo's perspective. The thing which strikes me as most unrealistic about the Laundry, compared to my experiences of the real-world...
  • Commented on Changing my mind on nuclear disarmament
    I diverge only on one point: I think that unilateral disarmament is a silly way to get rid of them when we have the opportunity to reach an international agreement on how everybody else can stand down part or all...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    That's because the Lemmingcrats are screwed I shall reply to this trolling only to correct the gratuitous lie: this has been going on for over a decade, long before the present government, and hence has clearly got absolutely nothing to...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    So - would it be fair to say that Politicians will favour "revolution over evolution" [...], while Ministries will favour "evolution over revolution" Those are a fair description of their respective positions. What we usually end up getting in practice...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    As things stand in the UK, the Tory Party can subsist on a few large business donors, the Labour Party on a few Union donations, and who knows what for the Lib-Dems. The key here is that the parties themselves...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    So you want to recapture politics? You don't need to start a fringe party, just join the mainstream party most closely traditionally aligned with your views along with a few of your keen mates and with luck you'll have far...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    "Constituencies." Is there gerrymandering? If not, how come? Depends on your definitions - the correct answer is "sort of". Constituency boundaries in the UK are adjusted by the politically independent Boundaries Commission. However, the commission only provides a recommendation,...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    You're painting a scenario in which the majority of people are lazy mushrooms. No, not at all - the people we ask who refuse to participate aren't being lazy (we wouldn't bother asking people who were!). They just firmly believe...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    That's how the Conservative Party operates in the UK. Labour, the LibDems, et al tend to be more centralized. I can't speak for the other two parties on this one, but for us (Lib Dems), absolutely not. I'm speaking here...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    Once everyone casts their vote, you pick a voter at random and use their choice. It sounds like a good idea on paper, on the basis of the mathematics, but you've missed a crucial hidden criteria for voting systems: The...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    (This post's reaching outside my personal experience to things which I've heard from our politicians - so it's second hand information) But my thinking was that the expertise would be provided by expert career functionaries based on direction by big...
  • Commented on Political failure modes and the beige dictatorship
    I'm actively involved in the LD party in London, and in the business of selecting candidates and getting them elected, so my perspective on this is coming from the other side. I'd say that you're about half right, but you've...
  • Commented on What are the big issues of 2013 going to be?
    The media continues to pursue sensationalist-but-unimportant stories over things that matter, and as a result of this cultural conditioning, people's predictions of the future tend to be spectacular and apocalyptic. Meanwhile, the actual future is a blend of slow, productive...
  • Commented on In case you were wondering ...
    Don't think of it as writing too much. Think of it as giving your editor a large shot selection....
  • Commented on Blank slate: politics and context in the 21st century
    Wearing my political hat, I'm going to dig out the same thing I always say to this question: nothing ever changes very much or very fast. In every parliament, the government will talk about how much better things are going...
  • Commented on Eating the seed corn
    Much of what you write here is speculative, but closing libraries is worrying. I would like to point out that opening or closing libraries is exclusively the domain of local councils, and not something that the UK parliament has any...
  • Commented on Head crash
    So maybe we should just break the UK up completely, declare it to be a customs, trade and currency union with a joint foreign policy, and regionalize everything. Flip it around: how about we devolve all decision making other than...
  • Commented on Seasonal flame bait
    It does seem rather likely that the US will, sadly, erupt into violence in the next decade. And that the result of this will be very little change for the level of destruction and suffering that results. But more worrying...
  • Commented on Tanenbaum's Law v. the Fermi Paradox
    Well, it's the usual bandwidth vs latency thing. You're assuming that only bandwidth is interesting....
  • Commented on Cynicism
    right now your post seems more like a "We can do it better!" piece of wishful thinking rather than a decent piece of politics Well, yes. Good politics, in UK terms, consists of claiming that the existing/historical system is the...
  • Commented on Cynicism
    That may, indeed be the Liberal position, but it is not the position we are seeing put forward by the current government. Indeed. I was in no sense discussing the policies of the current government in that post. You will...
  • Commented on Cynicism
    I think it would be helpful to first decide how you would recognise that better health system if you found it. Assert that such a measure exists, by all means, but then specify exactly how it works before No. The...
  • Commented on Cynicism
    To begin with, if you go back to the late 1980s, the NHS didn't have a bureaucracy of any significant size; it's a past-1997 accretion. Secondly, the big IT spending came in at the same time as the surge in...
  • Commented on Cynicism
    In fact, since all I'm seeing here are the "Tories want to hand over healthcare to a US-style insurance based abomination" and "state run NHS" positions, I'm going to dig out my soapbox and stake out one of the Liberal...
  • Commented on Cynicism
    Yes well, it's fairly clear that the English[*] government is trying to destroy the NHS as an integrated healthcare system, moving it to be a default single-payer so that they can then funnel business to US-style private health insurance corporations....
  • Commented on Cynicism
    At the next general election (in 2014) the LibDems will be served up on a sacrificial plate and take the blame, then the Tories will get in with an absolute majority and everything they've begun in this term will be...
  • Commented on Cynicism
    It is worth nothing that... Worth noting. Argh....
  • Commented on Cynicism
    Well yes: that's why I voted LibDem at the last election. I'd like to be able to vote for them at the next, but the Yellow Book wing shat the bed by crawling into bed with Cameron's Tories. Clegg's not...
  • Commented on Cynicism
    I can't help feeling that the Lib Dems have failed on the acta non verbia test to meet any part of these aims On the national level, the modern party has never achieved sufficient influence to do that, although there...
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