bookmark_borderDe danske partier i to dimensioner

For et par år siden skrev jeg en blogposting, hvor jeg så på, hvor tæt de danske partier er på hinanden, når man plotter dem i et todimensionelt koordinatsystem med værdipolitikken på X-aksen og den økonomiske politik på Y-aksen.

I anledning af folketingsvalget den 15. september tænkte jeg, det måske var på tide at ajourføre denne graf (klik på den for at se den i en større udgave).

Jeg har ladet de fleste partier blive, hvor de var, men jeg har rykket de Konservative væk fra Dansk Folkeparti, da de under deres nye formand modigt har prøvet at lægge afstand til dem, hvorimod jeg har indtryk af, at Venstre stadig klart foretrækker et samarbejde med Pia Kjærsgaard.

Mange vil sikkert mene, jeg har placeret mange af partierne forkert. Det er jo til syvende og sidst et spørgsmål om, hvem i partierne man lytter til. Der findes bestemt medlemmer af Venstre, der ønsker et samarbejde hen over midten, og det er bestemt ikke alle SF-medlemmer, der har været enige i deres ledelses fortsatte kamelslugning.

Opdatering (30/8): Baseret på Rasmus’ kommentar er her en ny udgave, som måske er mere retvisende:

I tilfælde af, at andre vil lave deres egne grafer, er her OpenOffice-regnearket, jeg lavede graferne i.

bookmark_border“Canvassing” og forholdstalsvalg

Iflg. Ritzau var Helle Thorning-Schmidt ude for at stemme dørklokker i dag.

Det lyder måske ikke så udenlandsk, men det er en idé, hun har hentet i Storbritannien (som hendes mand jo er fra), hvor det kaldes “canvassing”: “Det er noget, man har gjort i Storbritannien i mange år […], siger Helle Thorning-Schmidt. […] Omkring en halv million dørklokker regner partiet med at stemme i løbet af valgkampen. […] Partiet har kortlagt, i hvilke kvarterer tvivlere og andre potentielle S-vælger kunne tænkes at bo.”

Jeg må indrømme, jeg ikke er overbevist om, det er en god idé.

Grunden til, man bruger denne metode i Storbritannien (og i USA), er, at man dér bruger flertalsvalg i enkeltmandskredse (“first past the post”), og det betyder igen, at de allerfleste valgkredse er helt sikre, og man derfor kan koncentrere sine resurser om måske 5% af valgkredsene. Det er så få, at når man sender partiaktivisterne ind fra de resterende 95% af valgkredsene, kan man rent faktisk tale personligt med stort set alle vælgere i kredsen.

Men Danmark har jo forholdstalsvalg, så alle stemmer tæller lige meget. Hvis man altså sætter alle kræfter ind på at tale personligt med 10% af vælgerne, er der så meget andet, man ikke kan gøre, og det kan nemt betyde, at man mister opbakning blandt de resterende 90%.

Hvis artiklen taler sandt, og Socialdemokraterne virkelig har tænkt sig at føre valgkamp på britisk manér, vil jeg spå, at de får et meget dårligt valg den 15. september.

bookmark_borderStimulus in a globalised economy

The people – such as many Democrats in the US – claim that what the economy needs is more stimulus, but they never really seem to explain how that’s supposed to work in a globalised world.

Of course there are certain industries that spend a great deal of their costs on local salaries, so it is probably true that building an extra road will counteract the recession to a certain extent.

However, many “normal” people would, if given a pay-rise or a bonus, spend most of it on a holiday abroad, a new gadget imported from China, or at least on two bottles of South African wine, and while this will be beneficial to the world economy, it doesn’t help the local economy much.

I don’t really have a solution, but I just want to point out that spending your way out of a recession must be a lot easier in a non-globalised economy.

bookmark_borderFolketingsvalg den 15. september

Jeg var begyndt at antage, at Løkke – ligesom Gordon Brown – ville udskyde valget til den sidste mulige dato (d.v.s. den 10. november), men så udskrev han alligevel valg i dag til afholdelse den 15. september.

Det er vist det tredie folketingsvalg i Danmark, siden jeg flyttede til Skotland, og jeg kan naturligvis ikke stemme, takket været Danmarks idiotiske Grundlov.

S og SF forekommer mig at være lige så ubrugelige som V og K for tiden – Helle Thorning-Schmidt er efter sigende stadig fan af Tony Blair, hvilket gør hende ret unik på verdensplan.

Det eneste virkeligt vigtige ved dette valg er at gøre Dansk Folkeparti ligegyldigt igen, og de eneste to partier, der ikke vil give DF indrømmelser, er DrV og EL, så det er vel de eneste to partier, man bør overveje at stemme på. I økonomisk usikre tider som disse er EL dog nok ikke det bedste bud, så det efterlader Det radikale Venstre som det eneste parti, man reelt kan stemme på.

Med lidt held kan DrV igen blive tungen på vægtskålen, så der kan komme balance i tingene!

bookmark_borderLanguage isolates

The generally very interesting blog called Languages of the World wrote the following about Burushaski: “Burushaski’s claim to fame is its isolate status. Put simply, it is not related to any other human language on the planet.”

Although one often encounters similar definitions of language isolates, it is a misleading simplification. A language isolate is a language that has not been proven to be related to any other human language on the planet.

In other words, before historical linguists started their work, all languages were technically speaking language isolates, and they have then slowly been demonstrated to be related to other languages. In some cases it was really hard – for instance, it was allegedly very difficult to show that Albanian was Indo-European because there are so many loanwords in that language.

In the case of Burushaski, some people believe it is related to the North Caucasian languages. This hasn’t been proven in a convincing way so far, but that could change at any time, and if it happened, Burushaski would immediately lose its isolate status, just as happened to Ket.

bookmark_borderTwo Philadelphias



Two Philadelphias
Originally uploaded by viralbus

The centre of Glasgow has been transformed into a copy of Philadelphia for the purpose of shooting a Hollywood movie called “World War Z” (starring Brad Pitt).

Phyllis and I went down there last Sunday to take a few photos of it.

However, when we got home, I tried to compare it to photos of the same places in real Philly, and I must say I find it hard to see the similarity.

I guess the film’s producers must be counting on very few people actually knowing what Philadelphia looks like!

bookmark_borderPhyllis and the chip-shop menu

Phyllis sent in a few photos to an Oxfam competition, and the result was a lengthy article in the Evening Times today.

Here is the relevant part:

A photo of a Glasgow chip shop menu is among images of the city which have been made into postcards.

Tourists will be able to send friends and family the quirky image, which was one of the winners of a competition run by Oxfam.

It is one of four new Glasgow postcards which will go on sale at the Oxfam Bookshop in Royal Exchange Square.

The chip-shop picture was taken by Phyllis Buchanan, 43, from Newton Mearns and bosses had more than 200 entries.

Phyllis, who compiles dictionaries, said: “I took it in West Nile Street. The reason I submitted it is my husband’s Danish, my ex-husband’s French, and the one thing that seems to unite foreigners when they come visit is the dreadful things we eat. I thought foreigners would like to send a postcard like that.

“I was thrilled to be chosen.”

I think she would have liked to have won the competition with a more artistic photo, though. 🙂