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Monthly Archives: August 2011

Breaking News: High Court declares Malaysian “Solution” illegal

Just handed down at 2:15pm today: the High Court has declared the Malaysian “Solution” to be illegal in Plaintiff M70/2011 v Minister for Immigration and Citizenship [2011] HCA 32. I shall shamelessly reproduce the High Court’s summary of reasons available on their site — more detailed commentary (I hope) to follow [on which, see UPDATE […]

A reminder

Just because we have freedom of speech doesn’t mean we get to say anything we like, wherever we like. If people don’t like swear bears (to take one example) on their property, then those swear bears will receive no further invitations to visit. This is not a constraint on freedom of speech, but the enforcement […]

False Sense of Security

Private security firm G4S has sacked two members of staff who tagged a man’s false leg allowing him to remove it and break a court-imposed curfew. The pair were fooled by Christopher Lowcock, 29, who wrapped the prosthetic limb in a bandage when G4S set up the system at his Rochdale home. He was then […]

Nuls points or, the French Profumo Affair

Crown prosecutors, as a general rule, do not drop high-profile cases for shits and giggles. If an accused has been arraigned before a Grand Jury (common in the US), or the matter has sailed through committal proceedings (Australia and England) or satisfied the Examining Magistrate or Procurator Fiscal (Scotland and most of the Continent), then […]

The City Lily

Since getting linked to by three large blogs (Butterflies & Wheels, The Money Illusion and Marginal Revolution), our blog stats have gone up considerably (as in, they’ve doubled), and many of the new people seem to have stayed, at least as lurkers. With that in mind, it seems like a good idea to revive the […]

Bathe is not the same as swim…

You have to feel pretty sorry for the New South Wales couple who thought that they had a winning scratchie ticket. The rules of the ticket were that if the word and the picture matched, the person got the stipulated sum of money: Bale Kuzmanovski felt an ”explosion of elation” when the instant scratchie his […]

Pointing Fingers

JULIA Gillard has moved from defence to attack over the Craig Thomson scandal, accusing the opposition of using “Liberal mates” to exert political pressure on the NSW police to investigate the Labor MP. As Liberal senator George Brandis came under pressure for telephoning Australian Federal Police Commissioner Tony Negus over the affair, Labor sources said […]

Hors de combat

Legal systems, like bower-birds, collect curiosities. Often those curiosities are of a particular type, anachronisms, for example — much as the bower-bird prefers objects to be blue and shiny. The anachronisms hang around on the books and provoke mirth among lawyers (we are often the only ones to know that they are there, buried in […]

The Blair B*tch Project

Tony Blair today attacked claims that this summer’s riots were fuelled by “moral decline” and warned that talk of a broken society risked damaging Britain’s reputation. In a rare intervention into domestic politics, the former Prime Minister issued a stark warning that ”muddle-headed analysis” of the recent riots by left and right-wing politicians was in […]

Charabanc, n. obs.

English has the largest vocabulary of all languages, so it can probably afford to lose a few words. According to the people who publish the Collins English Dictionary, charabanc is on the way out, as are aerodrome and alienism. The latter is an old word for the study of mental illness, and when I read […]