Tuesday, June 5

Rule of law was helped by social stratification?

This post puzzled me. I quote:

Francis Fukuyama in his recent book "The Origins of Political Order" makes a similar claim about the origination of the rule of law, and so says that India has actually long had it because Brahmins held the state accountable to a set of laws that the king did not create.  However, he finds that India never developed a strong state (like the Chinese did, who on the other hand, never had the social stratification necessary to create the rule of law).

Bears thinking about, caste or social stratification as it is now known created the rule of law? Hmmmm, social law perhaps but that never stopped the damn rulers to do what they wished. I am really not sure that the Brahmins had that power to overrule or manage the rulers. Nothing that I have read says so. The Dharmashastras are full of this stuff but rarely does a ruler actually behave like what it says. And how does that square with the Mughal Empire and its Sharia law?

Monday, June 4

These North Carolinians are nuts

I quote from this article.

Okay, cheap shot alert. Actually all they did was say science is crazy. There is virtually universal agreement among scientists that the sea will probably rise agood meter or more before the end of the century, wreaking havoc in low-lying coastal counties. So the members of the developers’  lobbying group NC-20 say the sea will rise only 8 inches, because … because … well, SHUT UP, that’s because why.

That is, the meter or so of sea level rise predicted for the NC Coastal Resources Commission by a state-appointed board of scientists is extremely inconvenient for counties along the coast. So the NC-20 types have decided that we can escape sea level rise – in North Carolina, anyhow – by making it against the law. Or making MEASURING it against the law, anyhow.

Here’s a link to the circulated Replacement House Bill 819. The key language is in section 2, paragraph e, talking about rates of sea level rise: “These rates shall only be determined using historical data, and these data shall be limited to the time period following the year 1900. Rates of seas-level rise may be extrapolated linearly. …” It goes on, but there’s the core: North Carolina legislators have decided that the way to make exponential increases in sea level rise – caused by those inconvenient feedback loops we keep hearing about from scientists – go away is to make it against the law to extrapolate exponential; we can only extrapolate along a line predicted by previous sea level rises.

Which, yes, is exactly like saying, do not predict tomorrow’s weather based on radar images of a hurricane swirling offshore, moving west towards us with 60-mph winds and ten inches of rain. Predict the weather based on the last two weeks of fair weather with gentle breezes towards the east. Don’t use radar and barometers; use the Farmer’s Almanac and what grandpa remembers.

Sunday, June 3

Why I would be happy to have my kids with me when they are 30

This article was very puzzling to me. I quote some excerpts.

I tried to understand, I really did, but it was difficult after reading thelatest report on adult children still living at home: almost three million of the UK's 20-34-year-olds: approaching one in three men and one in seven women.

I could barely suppress the urge to grab someone, perhaps not the 20-year-olds, but certainly the thirtysomethings and scream: "What are you playing at? You get one life and you're living it in your parents' house, as a strangely tall child, presumably with secondary sexual characteristics. Whatever it takes, whatever it costs, however much your standard of living falls, you must save yourself and leave. At once!"

Studies such as this always amaze me. Not because I'm nasty or stupid. I know about high rents, low wages, no wages, exploitative landlords, travel costs, dangerous areas, debts, student or otherwise, and the housing ladder. I also understand that, in different cultures, adults live at home before marriage. But come on. For Britons, if you've always been healthy but you're still living with your folks in your late-20s, never mind mid-30s, something has gone wrong. And no amount of defensive yammering about high rents is going to change that.

And so on and so forth. She says…

Bar exceptional circumstances, this level of over-parenting is approaching child abuse. While it is one thing to help adult children through a short-term crisis (catastrophe, debt, relationship breakdown), surely the endgame is their successful autonomy. For most people, independence is the magic ticket to self-reliance, self-esteem and the future. Take it away and what's left? A place in their parents' life? That gilded cage, that domestic prison. It simply isn't enough.

This is child abuse? Hmmm. I am not sure, but I am wondering why is this assumption that just because a child is living with you, the child is dependent upon you? Let me ask this lady a different question, what exactly is that that the person is missing by having to live outside? Yes, they do have an opportunity to live independently but this idea that living independently is exclusively best for everybody and every time is rather silly no? Lets see, down history, combined families are the norm. Economically, it makes sense as living costs are shared, family structures are strengthened, and so on and so forth.

But perhaps most important, if you love your children, there is nothing wrong with you wanting them to live with you. Or me living with my parents, I love them as well. Perhaps what I found the most sad about this lady was the sheer lack of love she expressed. I can but pity her, she doesnt know about family love obviously. Well, so be it, takes all kinds. As for me, i would love to have my kids around me Smile