Health and safety at war (read)

Dateline 05 March 2008

What is this obsession with seeking to find health and safety where it doesn’t belong? Risks cannot be reduced to zero.

In the Vietnam War America lost 60,000 troops with 97% of the bodies accounted for. An astonishing record, for the time, and amounting to only 6% of those killed. So far in the Iraq conflict fewer than 4,000 American military personnel have been killed. In Iraq, America is fighting using an all volunteer military, whereas many casualties in Vietnam were conscripts. Granted, the Vietnam conflict lasted 16 years, though the most violent period with high American engagement was nearer ten years. The Iraq conflict will pass its fifth anniversary this month. In other words, the average annual total in Vietnam was some 50% higher than the five year total for Iraq.

Making your child’s choices (read)

Dateline 28 March 2007

What should your child have for breakfast this morning? Why not phone Eliot Spitzer and ask him? After all, Eliot knows your child better than you do, right? Eliot knows your child’s tastes and nutritional needs. Eliot knows all about your child’s allergies.

Or maybe, just maybe, Eliot doesn’t. Maybe Eliot doesn’t know your child at all, and cannot make complex judgements about every individual child in the state.

Whatever happened to the backyard inventor? (read)

From Wells to the 1950s science fiction was dominated by the idea of the inventor who would fly to the Moon

Death on the rails (read)

Stephen Byers has admitted he lied about his plans to buy Railtrack at a knock down price. It is time to come clean about the other aspect of this policy: that it killed people, and that he knew it would.

First written in 2001, this brief history of how nationalisation almost killed Britain's railways, privatisation revived them, and a cynical government conspired to destroy this success is still very relevant today.

A true path to tort reform (read)

America struggles with tort reform, but neither Democrats nor Republicans seem to have got it right

The poverty of poverty statistics (read)

The left defines poverty by income, not by what people have. It leads them down the blind alley of thinking that more government is the solution.

Of Pyramids and Pension scams (read)

If a private company did what governments do, its directors would go to jail

Privatise the Police (read)

Is it time for the ultimate privatisation?

Budgetting backwards (read)

What if governments had to write honest budgets?

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