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Author Archives: skepticlawyer

What if ‘net-neutrality’ was a really bad idea? Guest post by Brian Hanley

[SL: Despite long-term engagement with technology, I remain something of a tech sceptic. I'm not the only lawyer who's noticed that modern computer software often impedes the completion of important, time-critical tasks, or who has witnessed the property department at three different law firms refuse to part up with their IBM Selectrics. This article, however, […]

‘I’m a believer’: Psychic Sally isn’t in it for the money

[SL: This is my first column for British magazine 'The Skeptic'; I share 'Skeptic in the Courtroom' column-writing duties with Manchester barrister Geoff Whelan, which means my duties aren't too onerous (two or three times a year) and, I figure, once the magazine has been on the newstands for several months, I'm probably pretty safe […]

Yes, the Daily Mail Really Does Hate Everyone

[SL: once again, brought over from Thoughts on Liberty, and written in response to some of the Daily Mail's customary nastiness. As you may recall, I wrote a piece on the gleeful crowing engaged in by the left over the death of Margaret Thatcher. I thought that was appalling, and so is this: people are […]

Regulatory Vengeance

[SL: I've brought this piece over from Thoughts on Liberty for two reasons: (1) a friend asked me to, and (2), it had its origins in a conversation with other Australian classical liberals in the wake of David Leyonhjelm winning a senate spot in New South Wales. I wrote it because it seems to me, […]

Learning all the wrong lessons

[I've brought this post over from Thoughts on Liberty, in part because I don't know whether David Cameron's desire to channel Stephen Conroy has yet reached Australian shores. Australia is a small country - one should expect its experiences to be either ignored or misunderstood in larger countries - however, I think that this level […]

In other writing news…

This announcement comes via the UK magazine The Skeptic: Special announcement: we have a new legal column, which will be contributed by Geoff Whelan of GMSS and QEDcon, and Helen Dale of skepticlawyer.com.au. Geoff kicks off this issue with thoughts on the legal practicalities of prosecuting psychics. The Skeptic is a magazine of the traditional […]

Howard Sattler: a comment

Like the Australian PM – but unlike most of the people holding forth on misogyny in Australia generally and this interview in particular – I have been interviewed by Howard Sattler. When he interviewed me, he was courteous, pleasant, and asked intelligent questions, despite the fact that some other media outlets had turned me into […]

Thoughts on Liberty

… An announcement. Starting this Friday (give or take time-zone issues thanks to the blog in question being located in the US, me being in the UK, and skepticlawyer being located in Australia), I’ll be writing once a week for Thoughts on Liberty. You’ll be pleased to know I won’t be leaving here, and that […]

N Guilty Men: a meditation on the presumption of innocence

First, the societies that did not have it: 1. Ancient Israel: And Abraham drew near and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked? Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein? That be far from thee […]

Sometimes, there are no lessons

‘We must do something, here is something, let’s do that thing’ is one of the most seductive wrong routes those in power can take in the wake of an act of terror. Initially praised for his unwillingness to be drawn into the usual epidemic of jerking knees that breaks out whenever awful stuff happens in […]