Author Archives: skepticlawyer

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 […]

Privilege: an advice

[A long time ago, I promised various skeptical friends that I would write a post on the idea of ‘privilege’, something about which I have had grave doubts for some time. Unfortunately life and work got in the way, and the post remained unwritten. However, I then made the same undertaking to various classical liberal […]

Paid Parental Leave v Income Splitting

Two things have come to my attention in the last 24 hours. First, in Australia, both Labor and the Coalition are introducing/plan to introduce a form of paid parental leave to replace the baby bonus. Labor’s policy is set at the minimum wage and is therefore cheaper to the taxpayer and less onerous on the […]

And yes, I do have a dog in this fight ;)

It has long been my view that Gerard Henderson and Michael Danby and Colin Rubinstein do not actually accept the logic behind having freedom of speech. Instead, they have jumped on the fashionable bandwagon that seeks to control how one’s ‘group’ is portrayed, hence their support for legislative piffle like s 18 (c) of the […]

‘By Heart, not Rote’: some observations on geeks and geekiness

Chrissie Amphlett and the Divinyls provided a decent chunk of the soundtrack to my young life; reports of her early death (aged 53) hit me in the childhood memories, hard, much like the arrest of Rolf Harris, or pictures of Berliners crawling over the remains of the Wall. I have, by saying those things, disclosed […]

You are correct: westerners care more about Boston than Baghdad – guest post by Jacques Chester

[SL: I have long been of the view–while I have great sympathy for my libertarian and leftist friends who want calamity in the developing world taken as seriously as calamity in the developed world–that the lesson that Jacques teaches below is important, and needs to be taken seriously. There is a reason why ‘if it […]