Posts by richard

  • Muse: Guilt By Association Copy, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I didn’t mean to imply that Dotcom has roomful of Nazi memorabilia. Nor would I necessarily judge someone for owning a copy of Mein Kampf. But to go out of your way to buy a copy whose main attraction is that it was personally handled by Hitler – I think you are entitled to think there’s something just a little bit sick about that.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Muse: Guilt By Association Copy,

    Someone's showing you round their house, and they open a door and say "Here's where I keep my copy of Mein Kampf that Hitler personally signed, along with my other Nazi memorabilia" -- yeah, I'd judge them.

    If you are arguing that this was germane to his legal problems, then I guess the answer is no -- but is it relevant when we are talking about someone who wants to bankroll a political party that may be able to influence the composition and policies of our next government? Then I think the answer is likely yes.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: The Internet Party, whatever happens,

    It's ironic, although the legal case against Dotcom has grown thinner with time, the enthusiasm with which I would greet his deportation (to anywhere, I'm not fussy) grows stronger with each passing day.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Cultural Heroes and living memory,

    Wow. This is quiet. Everyone must be reading twitter.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: MegaBox: From f**k-all to zero, in reply to Yamis,

    Sure. Just sign up with Mega and wait.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: MegaBox: From f**k-all to zero,

    Maker or taker, parasite or host?

    Another question is what sort of advertisers would buy space that had been, um, liberated from Google? Am predicting it will be all classy stuff – you know, Make Money From Home, Free iPods, Cheap Viagra, Meet Your New Russian Girlfriend, Machines in Your Basement to Make Free Energy, One Simple Trick to Help you Lose Belly Fat, Vaccine Denialists…

    That’s going to be just wonderful for Brand New Zealand – 1% Pure.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Fact and fantasy,

    I suspect this comes under the heading of feeding the trolls.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Calling the race before it's over,

    Watching this from a distance, I can see why Labour members might want a bigger say in electing the Labour leader.

    On the other hand, the much larger number of people who vote for Labour might prefer that the Labour leader (the leader of the opposition, and potentially the prime minister) be chosen only by the members of caucus who are actually elected by voters like themselves…

    The Labour party can of course run itself as its members see fit – but there is an interesting question of ownership here, in that many Labour voters may see themselves as having a moral stake in the Labour party, even if they are not paying dues – in much the same way that Cantabrians see themselves having a stake in the Cathedral, even if very few of them actually bother to join the church…

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Who No : Letters From Alice May…,

    I had a guy call me from Damascus last year (when I was still working in the US), to say he had worked out that the moon actually orbited the earth in the opposite direction from the one you find in the textbooks.

    He was very polite, but also insistent, so eventually I had to cut him off and get on with my day.

    But if he really was from Syria, people were being shot dead in the street as the revolution there got underway that same week.

    There is a surprising volume of this stuff out there. Some of it is merely eccentric – I am sure there are more “armchair cosmologists” with their own theories of how the universe works in New Zealand than paid professionals (although the latter list is fairly small, so it not that surprising I guess), whereas others are clearly mentally ill.

    When I was a post-doc one of my senior colleagues was the writer of several high-profile popular books, and another edited a major journal. They got this stuff by the boxload, and had a friendly rivalry as to who got the most :-)

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Who No : Letters From Alice May…,

    I get letters (well, email, these days) all the time. I just hit delete.

    One person's occupational hazard is another person's museum exhibit.

    Not looking for New Engla… • Since Nov 2006 • 254 posts Report Reply

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