Friday, June 21, 2013
A blast from the past
The British Liberal party of today is firmly in favour of Britain's membership of the EU, meaning that British law is subjugated to EU law. A great Liberal Leader of the early 20th century would be incredulous. Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman wrote in 1902:
"It means that we abandon our fiscal independence, together with our free-trade ways; that we subside into the tenth part of a Vehmgericht which is to direct us what sugar is to be countervailed, at what rate per cent. we are to countervail it, how much is to be put on for the bounty, and how much for the tariff being in excess of the convention tariff; and this being the established order of things, the British Chancellor of the Exchequer in his robes obeys the orders that he receives from this foreign convention, in which the Britisher is only one out of ten, and the House of Commons humbly submits to the whole transaction. ("Shame.") Sir, of all the insane schemes ever offered to a free country as a boon this is surely the maddest."
He was complaining about British participation in an international price-fixing cartel for sugar. To this day, the EU levies a heavy tariff on sugar imports -- €419 per ton on white sugar.
A Vehmgericht was a German secret court. CB was using the term mockingly.
DISCRIMINATION! 70% of women say a man 'wouldn't stand a chance' if he was under 6ft
There are all sorts of howls about discrimination against women, or certain types of women, but what about short men? Is there a "meat market" for men too? It seems so
The vast majority of women say a man 'wouldn't stand a chance' in the love stakes if they were under 6ft in height, and 'would struggle' to get their attention... despite the average height of the British man being just 5ft 10ins, two inches below a 'perfect' height.
And although men are getting there (slowly but surely), having shot up by four inches in the past 100 years, 71 per cent of females still say the ideal height for a male partner is between 6ft and 6ft 6ins, according to a new poll.
Meanwhile, the average height of women in the UK is 5ft 4ins - just one-and-half inches more than 100 years ago.
And as far as men are concerned, 45 per cent would date a woman taller than them - if she would have them - and 49 per cent said the ideal woman was between 5ft 7ins and 5ft 10ins tall, according to the study of 1,400 British women by men's big and tall brand High And Mighty.
Of these women, 71 per cent want their man between 6ft and 6ft 6ins, 26 per cent between 5ft 7ins to 5ft 11ins, and three per cent between 6ft 6ins and 6ft 11ins.
A total of 63 per cent also said they thought that 'taller men' were sexier than smaller men - mirroring Hollywood's penchant for taller leading men such as 6ft 3ins tall Thor star Chris Hemsworth and 6ft 3ins tall Transformers star Josh Duhamel.
Women also said they believe that 'short man syndrome' or 'small man's inferiority complex' - also called the Napolean complex after the famous emperor Napolean Bonaparte, who was 5ft 6ins tall - really does exist, with 62 per cent saying smaller men had an inferiority complex linked to their height.
A total of 33 per cent of women polled said they believed tall men were happier than short men.
Women were also asked which factors were 'most important in a man', with the top answer being a sense of humour, followed by kindness, height, grooming, physique, fashion sense and hair.
The poll found that 72 per cent of men were 'happy with their height', with the most ideal height listed as 6ft by 23 per cent, 6ft 2ins by 17 per cent, and 6ft 3ins by 10 per cent.
Some 54 per cent of men polled said they thought 'height made no difference to their attractiveness'.
Sally Smith, 32, of Birmingham, said: 'I'm 5ft 8ins and my ex-boyfriend was only 5ft 7ins. After a while I got a bit sick of looking down on him and never being able to wear heels, so after a year I gave him the push.'
The accounts worker added: 'I'm now dating a man who is 6ft 2ins, and now I can wear whatever kind of shoes I want without feeling like I'm towering over by boyfriend.'
Psychologist Portia Hickey said: 'Psychological research has found that women tend to describe their ideal man as taller than average.
'Women's attraction to taller men is likely to be driven by both evolution and positive stereotypes about tall men. 'Women are likely to associate a tall man with higher social and professional status as well as reproductive potential, making them seem more attractive.'
Britain's Stalinist public service
It takes huge pressure to breach their reflexive secrecy
The NHS watchdog may be forced to name officials at the centre of a "cover-up" over a hospital where babies died through neglect after an outcry from ministers, MPs and victims’ families.
There was criticism of the regulator’s refusal to name those who instigated the apparent cover-up over deaths of mothers and babies at University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay (UHMB) NHS Trust.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) claimed it could it not disclose the identities of those who ordered the destruction of a report which highlighted failings by the watchdog, nor whether those responsible were still employed, due to data protection laws.
However the Information Commissioner’s office said the legislation was “no blanket ban preventing senior managers being held to account”.
Jeremy Hunt, the Health Secretary, demanded that those responsible for the apparent cover-up ultimately be publicly identified, despite defending the CQC’s decision not to name the individuals immediately.
David Behan, chief executive of the CQC, was forced to pledge to look again at the legal advice to not reveal the names of those involved.
Mr Behan told BBC's Newsnight programme that he had been advised that "to put people's personal data [into the report] would be a breach of their rights".
"I was acting on the legal advice I was given, I acted in good faith," he said.
However, he added: "We've decided today that we will review that legal advice and we've commissioned a review of that legal advice to see if we can put this information into the public domain."
Christopher Graham, the Information Commissioner, said he doubted the legal advice given to the CQC.
"This feels like a public authority hiding behind the Data Protection Act, it's very common, but you have to go by what the law says and the law is very clear,” he said. “You have to process data fairly, you have to take into account people's expectation of confidentiality, patient data, obvious, but officials, there you have to apply a public interest test.
"I'm not convinced that the Care Quality Commission have been correctly advised. I think they are going to have to look at this again."
The watchdog was embroiled in a deepening controversy tonight as it attempted to defend its decision to censor the damning report, which says the organisation may be involved in a “broader and ongoing cover-up”, suggesting that the whole truth about the CQCs suppression of the scandal has yet to emerge.
The report, published today, revealed that the CQC deleted the review of their failure to act on concerns about UHMB, where police are investigating the deaths of at least eight mothers and babies. It concluded that the CQC was guilty of a “cover-up” but did not name individuals.
Those protected include one senior manager who ordered an internal review that uncovered major weaknesses in its inspection systems, which may have cost the lives of mothers and babies, and a second official who said that the report must “never be in a public domain”.
The CQC said it could not publish the names because doing so “would have been breaching the Data Protection Act”.
Norman Lamb, a health minister, yesterday called for “full transparency”.
Mr Hunt has asked the CQC to report back to him on what action should be taken within the next two months.
He said: “The whole truth must now come out and individuals must be held to account.”
Mr Hunt apologised to the families of those who had died. He said: “I want to apologise on behalf of the Government and the NHS for all the appalling suffering they have endured.”
However, Mr Hunt said redacting the names of officials in the report was the “right decision” at the moment on the basis of the legal advice.
MPs said that the decision not to publish the names was “flawed”. Tim Farron, the Liberal Democrat President, who is MP for Westmorland & Lonsdale has now referred the apparent cover-up to the Metropolitan Police.
He said: “Grieving families deserve to know who made these decisions”, adding: “The Data Protection Act is supposed to protect the powerless against the powerful — not the other way round.”
Brazil Lawmakers OK Bill for Treatment of homosexuals
A Brazilian congressional human rights committee on Thursday approved legislation that would allow psychologists to treat homosexuality as a disorder or pathology.
The commission is led by evangelical pastor Marco Feliciano of the Social Christian Party, who has been accused of homophobia and enraged activists by calling AIDS a "gay cancer" in a tweet. His appointment as head the Commission for Human Rights and Minorities in the lower house of Brazil's Congress was fiercely opposed by gay and human rights groups.
The measure approved Tuesday seeks to lift a prohibition on psychologists treating homosexuality that was established by the Federal Psychology Council. The ban has been in effect since 1999.
"In practice, (the initiative's) result would be that a person over 18 years of age, responsible for his actions, who is homosexual and wants to reorient his sexuality, can be attended by a psychologist," said lawmaker Joao Campos, a member of the evangelical bloc of Brazil's lower house.
Feliciano had tried for weeks to put the "gay cure" initiative before the commission but had failed as opponents maneuvered to block a vote. The initiative was passed Tuesday amid a low turnout by commission members.
The psychologists' council had called on commission members to vote against it.
"Today psychology, as wells as other scientific disciplines, recognize that sexual orientation is not a pathology that should be treated, it is not a perversion nor a disorder nor a behavioral disturbance. Since this is the case, we cannot offer a cure, and that is an ethical principle," said council member Huberto Verona.
The initiative still must be debated by other committees before going to the full Chamber of Deputies and the Senate for votes.
Jean Wyllys, Brazil's first openly gay lawmaker, expressed confidence the initiative would not make it through the legislative process.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.