Sunday, October 31, 2010

Objective Environmentalists?

Alex answers his mail, re: "Eco-Terrorists Sentence Skeptics to Death."

This article proved rather polarizing, even among the Objectivist-leaning audience of The Atlasphere. Most all ratings that weren't five stars were one star.

Marlize writes:

Excellent column. Disgusting videos. I'm tempted to watch them again — as I still can't believe these even exist in the world — but I'm eating breakfast as I write this and would prefer to keep it in.

I hope you're right when you say the video makers may have misjudged the situation and thought their views more mainstream than they are. I fear that all too many environmentalists, or even college students who are doing the hip thing and "going green," would find these commercials somehow amusing.

Great column, though.

Thanks a lot. Glad you liked my article.

Yeah, I know more people that apparently absorbed green through social osmosis than I care to. Seeing basically only defiant comments at the Armstrong YouTube interview was quite encouraging, though.

Maybe hip environmentalism is only skin deep. As long as they think they're green if they recycle their bottles and switch off the light when they leave the room, it's cool with them. But once they realize that environmentalism means no cell phones, no internet, and no flying and/or that noncompliance is answered with a death threat, it's a lot less hip.

I guess if civilization dies from environmentalism, it won't be with a bang, but with a whimper. One democratically enacted, environmentally friendly law after another until the lights go out.

Like some years ago in California. Of course the moon bats blame that on the free market, and not on the fact that too few if any new power plants get built…

Ramon writes:

Wow, the "Thompson Harmonizer."

I'm sure they'd love to have that. Only they'd call it the "harmony with naturizer."

Turns people into carbon. They couldn't get any more in harmony with nature.

Carbon is people!

Adrian writes:

I agree with you wholeheartedly with respect to the fallacy of global warming and the brainwashing of the unsuspecting public by the governmental encouragement of the propagation of incorrect "scientific" information. (Whew! Mouthful)

I have not yet formulated a philosophical opinion to the actual existence of an environmental issue which happened to be true.

Objectivists, of which I am one, are only too happy that this particular environmental issue, namely Global Warming, is false.

What if one lived on a volcanic island inhabited by 500 to 1000 people and his property was so situated that it was the highest in elevation of all owned properties where the main river ran through it before it flowed through or near anyone else's property — would it be legal and/or moral for him to poison the water while it flowed through his land? (I use "volcanic" merely to demonstrate the island's topographical characteristics).

This realistic situation has been plaguing me for a while now. Obviously harming the unsuspecting rest of the population is murder. If we agree on that premise, then the best answer I could come up with is that the water in the river is only his if he claims it. The only way to claim that water is to claim its molecules. The only way to do that is to gather and store that water in a container. THEN, he owns that water and can do whatever the hell he wants to do with it.

This may seem to be elementary but it surfaces contradictions with accepted Objectivist views on the environment.

Though it is quite possible to contain air molecules, should it be only legal/moral to poison the air that one contains? When one is afflicted with a highly contagious deadly virus, we all agree that he should be legally quarantined.

How is this different to poisoning the air or water with factory waste? I am all for production and do not believe that smoke stacks generally affect the environment enough to cause more unhappiness to my life than the products it produces promote happiness. However is there no waste that a factory can produce that would tip that happy/unhappy scale? If so, what then?

Blank.

A philosophy is a system which equips man with a code of morality, according to reality if it is Objectivism, to achieve his own happiness. Just as man must know legal law before he acts, so too should he know moral law beforehand.

The example I illustrated above is far from farfetched. Yet we have no answer for it should it occur. Yet other Objectivists do not seem to care.

We need an answer.

Of course no one has a right to physically harm someone else negligently — otherwise anyone could murder anyone and pretend it was just negligence. And of course no one has a right to emit anything onto anybody else's property.

But to avoid unnecessary bloodshed and destruction, no one should use force unless he can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the other party is guilty of aggression. And no one should use force over trifles, like you don't kill someone for pushing you.

So if the acid rain from someone's smokestack eats the laundry on your line, you have a right to stop his pollution by force. But if you can't prove that his carbon dioxide is causing any material damage, you should not.

John writes:

That ad campaign really misses the point with the death threats and all, I'll give you that.

Just let me tell you this, if your happiness and independence are going to be sacrificed to mother earth just by making a conscious effort to make this earth more livable then you're probably doing something wrong.

I agree that the video is way over the top and really takes the idea too far, I also think that joining a religion won't make the world a better place but cutting your emissions will have immediate benefits for the most important person: YOU!

Check your premises. Or rather, theirs.

They are not out to abolish waste. They're out to abolish flying.

Aaron writes:

Let me get this straight. You actually believe that global warming activists all secretly would act this way if given the chance. That this is "incontrovertible proof" of "their totalitarian anti-man designs to have everyone who refuses to sacrifice their happiness and independence to mother earth murdered."

Let me get this straight. You watched that video and Franny's comments and still aren't convinced that these global warming activists would act this way if given the chance?

As for all global warming activists, even if they have nothing to do with the video, not very many of them are "libertarian environmentalists" or "Quaker environmentalists" acting on their own beliefs and restricting their interactions with skeptics to nonviolent persuasion. Almost all environmentalists I ever heard of advocate the use of (government) force against dissenters ("polluters," "deniers," etc.).

Are you just hyping this idea to get attention, or are you some kind of dumbshit?

Actually, I'm more of a jerk. You're the dumb shit.

Of course I'm hyping it for all it's worth. To let the mainstream media hush it up would be irresponsible.

There is nothing inherently "anti-man" about wanting the planet that every single human lives on to possess a healthy environment. Quite the opposite actually.

It couldn't be more anti-man. The eco-terrorist don't want a healthy environment. They want to force people to make do with less just to make everybody as miserable as the eco-terrorists are.

Can people of all political persuasions make ads that are in bad taste? Certainly. But, to argue whether and how well this ad is trying to make a point with dark humor is beside the point. To truly believe that all "greens" really want to murder those that don't think exactly like them requires an extraordinary lack of judgment on your part.

You mean, "greens" do not advocate environmental legislation, and those who break those laws and defend themselves against the subsequent government aggression will not be murdered? To blank out the fact that eco-terrorists have the state aggress against "polluters" requires an extraordinary lack of judgment on your part.

Kyle writes:

Okay, so this particular ad campaign is in poor taste. It is a logical fallacy to attribute this poor taste to all environmentalists.

The scientific truth is that if we don't reduce our carbon emissions, the world will become unlivable. Most environmentalists are pro-science and pro-humanity. They are true objectivists.

The fallacy is all yours. It's called bait and switch, switching my "the environmentalists" for your "all environmentalists." I don't have to prove anything about every last environmentalist.

There were north of a hundred people involved in making this video, and it didn't occur to a single one of them to say, "Hey, wait, a terror threat, even tongue in cheek, might not be such a good idea"? That's a pretty good sample for me.

And if that's not enough, see the lack of nonaggressive greens noted above.

BTW, I'm not emitting any carbon. On the contrary, I have plenty of carbon in the form of coal burned for power generation.

As for your carbon emissions, I could sell you some carbon offsets. Or you could see a doctor. Something must be wrong with you if you emit carbon.

Or wait, what kind of carbon do you emit? Coal? Graphite? Diamonds? If it's diamonds, I'm willing to dispose of your carbon.

The snake oil salesmen who deny global warming are the ones who despise humanity, coddling them into committing global suicide by ignoring the scientific warnings and continuing to pollute with abandon.

"Global suicide"? Now, that sounds objective and scientific. You have me convinced.

You are aware that your "pollutant" is actually a nutrient? Our plants would need it if they weren't plastic.

Objectivists should be the first to embrace science and reason, to face our problems squarely and seek solutions boldly. When I see so-called objectivists denying science, I have to shake my head and roll my eyes. Get with it, people!

This kind of "science"?

Really, if it was 1930 and I showed you guys a funny nazi silent movie about gassing Jews, you'd say they don't mean it. The nazis hate Jews, and once they established a totalitarian nazi government, they exterminated Jews. The commies hate businessmen, and once they established a totalitarian commie government, they exterminated businessmen. The eco-terrorists hate everyone who produces carbon dioxide, and guess what they'll do once they establish a totalitarian eco-terrorists government?

Evidently, if the Franny Anderson types are the rulers, there will be death camps. How could anybody mistake the fanaticism evident in her videos for dark humor?

If your garden variety greens are the rulers, there may not be death camps, but there will be murder nonetheless. Everybody who refuses to have his standard of living reduced to Stone Age standards will be arrested and legally murdered once he resists arrest.

We're talking about a "problem" here whose science is very much not settled and that even if the worst-case scenarios are true can be solved relatively cheaply by building levees and replacing trailer parks and light-frame firetraps with real houses from steel, concrete, and masonry, as they should be anyway.

We're not talking about vilifying Jews or businessmen here, but a gas that is produced by any human activity, including breathing. You really want to put the most murderous invention of man, government, in charge of reducing that?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

No Pressure Redux

To cope with its honesty deficit, eco-terrorist group 10:10 released its revised No Pressure video:

Monday, October 25, 2010

All Gore: Yes, We Are Anti-Man

And here my article at The Atlasphere on the eco-terrorist video:

"Eco-Terrorists Sentence Skeptics to Death"

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Hippie Valley Hypocrites

(Without any apologies whatsoever to Fundie C. Riley.)

Hippie Valley EPA

I wanna tell you all a story 'bout a Hippie Valley single dad
Who had a teenager adopted who attended Hippie Valley Junior High
Well, this young man came home one afternoon and didn't even stop to play
And he said, Kev, I got a note here from the Hippie Valley EPA
Well, the note said, Mr. Traynor, you're flyin' your Gulfstream way too high
And it's reported you've been pollutin' and a drivin' round with girls and burnin' fuel
And we don't believe you oughta be a bringin' up your little boy this way
And it was signed by The Secretary, Hippie Valley EPA
Well, it happened that the EPA was gonna meet that very afternoon
And they were sure surprised when Mr. Traynor wore his .45 into the room
And as he walked up to the lectern I can still recall the words he had to say
He said, I'd like to address this meeting of the Hippie Valley EPA
Well, there's Gillian Anderson sittin' there and seven times she flew across the lake
And St. Obama sure seems to melt a lotta ice whenever he's away
And Philip D. Jones, can you tell us why your secretaries had to leave this town?
And shouldn't Hippie Gore be told to keep his thermostats all turned completely down?
James Cameron couldn't be here 'cause he played too long with his dirt bikes again
And if you watch Franny Armstrong's spot you'll find she's lost her little bit of brain
And then you have the nerve to tell me you think that as a father I'm not fit
Well, this is just a concentration camp and you're all Hippie Valley hypocrites
No, I wouldn't put you on because it really did, it happened just this way
When Kevin Traynor socked it to the Hippie Valley EPA

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Rent Is Too Damn High

I could not agree more with Jimmy McMillan. Rent is too damn high.

I have yet to see a desirable decent apartment whose rent isn't too damn high.

But socialism doesn't help.

In capitalism, the desirable and expensive apartments go to those who produce most.

Under communism, they go to the commissars.

Under less comprehensive forms of socialism, like rent control, they go to the well-connected.

If you give up capitalism for socialism, it no longer matters how much you make, but who you know.

For cheaper and more plentiful housing, it takes more capitalism, not less. End frivolous government regulation.

End zoning rules that limit building height and floor area. End runaway landmarking that turns whole neighborhoods into historic districts museums where townhouses cannot be demolished to build apartment towers.

Monday, October 11, 2010

My Carbon Output Is Zero

"There are several allotropes of carbon of which the best known are graphite, diamond, and amorphous carbon."

I produce neither graphite, nor diamonds, nor coal, so by definition my carbon output is zero.

In fact, for the power I use, carbon in the form of coal is burned into products like carbon dioxide, so my carbon output is actually negative.

Hey, All Gore, wanna buy some carbon offsets from me?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The RLC Franny Armstrong Challenge

"We 'killed' five people to make No Pressure — a mere blip compared to the 300,000 real people who now die each year from climate change."

— Franny Armstrong

Not that it matters, but I count at least seven "blips" murdered in Franny's wish-fulfillment fantasy: two student blips, three office blips, one soccer blip, and the blip that is Gillian Anderson.

(BTW, is it only me, or do those raised hands of all those climate nazis in the office at 1:40 remind you of the Hitler salute? Climate Heil!)

Not only is Franny unable or unwilling to count her victims, the 300,000 number is a lie, too.

Anyway, is it "kill" or kill? Sounds like those fascists would happily murder five to seven human beings in real life to save 300,000 others.

Well, we capitalist polluters are a little more moral than you hippie fascists.

"Be that as it may, this is not about practicality, but about inalienable rights. If the lives of one billion people could only be saved by sacrificing the rights of one individual, I would always choose to save the one and let the billion go to hell. Anything else is cannibalism."

"But aren't you then sacrificing the billion to save the one?"

"No. There is a difference between eating others and refusing to be eaten, whatever the consequences. My refusal to be fodder does not make me a murderer. My rights are inalienable. If others can only survive by sacrificing me, they have no right to live, to live by sacrificing me. They have no right to live as cannibals."

(Mysterious Boat, p. 146.)

So I ask that ugly, murderous hippie bitch Franny Armstrong: If killing five people to save 300,000 is OK with you, how about killing just one to save 300,000?

Yes, that's right, only one. The only person you have a right to kill — yourself.

In the name of the humanity you wish to exterminate, I challenge you to put your life where your big, lying mouth is. How many tons of carbon dioxide do we have to save in exchange for you to kill yourself?

I'm sure there's no better motivation for mankind to cut emissions — in fact, to do anything, whatever it takes — than the prospect of getting rid of a terrorist monstrosity like you.

You remind me of the day I crossed a mantis with a termite and got an insect that said grace before it ate the house. Only you're a cross between a nazi and a hippie. Can there be anything grosser in the universe?

Name your number, make a bid, and if mankind succeeds in cutting the required amount of carbon dioxide, you kill yourself. No excuses.

No pressure. Only honor. Oh, wait, I should spell that to a hypocritical liar like you…

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Terrorists and Liars, Too

No Pressure was made with minimal carbon emissions — shot wholly within the M25, the crew got around on public transport and in low-carbon hybrid vehicles (thanks to Green Tomatoes and National Express) and the production had a zero flight policy.

How then did they get Gillian Anderson to the set, or the set to Gillian Anderson, Anderson being American?

Was Anderson in the UK anyway and they make believe for that reason her flight doesn't count?

Would that be a zero flight policy? Well, only in the sense of All Gore's carbon offsets.

Or did she take the Queen Mary 2? Or a private yacht?

And how environmentally friendly are those luxury modes of transportation? (That better was a sailing yacht.) I love the smell of bunker C in the morning…

(As the quoted page has since been taken down, I cannot prove who of the terrorist hippie bitches made that statement, so I re-titled the post.)

Update:

Being informed by an anonymous operative that Gillian Anderson moved to the UK — hey, wait. I covered that above.

So her flight to the UK was a little longer ago. But on the other hand, she probably flies across the Atlantic regularly to visit friends and family.

"We had a zero flight policy, but our star is a frequent flyer. "

"OK, folks, terror spot's in the can, get me to the airport!"

I'm not even mentioning Franny's blueberries.

Make that terrorists and hypocrites.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Government Firefighters Watch as Home Burns to the Ground

Wait, why was it that we have government? Like, because if all services the government pretends to provide were supplied by for-profit corporations, those who can't pay wouldn't get police or fire protection unless they relied on charity?



Turns out the government isn't very charitable. You don't pay your fee, they let your home burn. Nice.

So we pay monopoly prices, we get brutalized by fascist pigs, and we still don't get any services if we don't pay. What was the great idea about government again?

(One might say it's better than making the fee a tax and forcing people to pay it and buy fire protection at gunpoint, but it still isn't what we're always told about government: that the government protects you with basic services even if you can't pay.)

Right now we are advising all our clients to put everything they've got into garden hoses and fire extinguishers.

Update:

Maybe unsurprisingly, Fire Engineering, apparently the voice of government-funded firefighters, whose newsletter originally alerted me to the story, takes the opposite view: If all the taxes you're already paying don't buy you fire protection without an extra fee, well, make the fee another tax.

Necessary services — fire, police, health care and schools come quickly to mind — can't be delivered on an opt-in basis. Government, that much-maligned creature, actually does a few things well, including protecting the life and liberty of its citizens. What happened in Tennessee underscores again that we are all in this together, no matter how much we think we can go it alone.

Since when does government protect our liberty well? How do you protect somebody's life and liberty by brutalizing them for smoking weed?

I had thought outspoken collectivism of such an obscene degree existed only in Ayn Rand villains anymore. Even Obama minces his words.

I say, if a government that confiscates trillions of dollars can't even provide fire protection without a surcharge or a tax hike, it's time to abolish that government and let capitalism (and, if necessary, charity) take over. It can't get any worse, at any rate.

If I pay half my income to the government, I expect first-rate fire and police protection even in the last rural middle of nowhere, before they spend the first dollar on aircraft carriers (much as I love aircraft carriers) and Medicare / public school / socialism shit. If I pay taxes, the least I have to get is fire protection, no strings attached. If I don't get that, and have to haggle with a government or volunteer fire department anyway, then I don't want to pay taxes but negotiate with a for-profit fire protection provider right away.

BTW, one would think a capitalist provider would have accepted the higher, retroactive payment. Even in ancient Rome, private fire companies would buy houses on fire at rock-bottom prices and extinguish the fire instead of this waste.

In capitalism, you can buy any service for a price. Look at no-frills airlines. For a price, you can board first even if you arrive at the airport last.

Capitalism hates waste. Governments love to make examples.

The Roman firefighters got to keep the damaged houses. The mayor of South Fulton wouldn't have got to keep the late fee; it would have gone into city coffers.

So he only had his authority to preserve. By letting the house go to waste.

Yes, in capitalism some poor people would get no or shitty service. But the government has taken over half the country and some people still get no service.

And the statists' answer? More government.

You stupid, looting, slave-driving, murderous moon bats and wing nuts! The government could confiscate a hundred percent of our money and we still wouldn't all get fire protection or health insurance.

Because our dear rulers steal half of the tax money and waste the rest.

Why? Because they can.

Why can they do that? Because they have no competition.

And if there is competition, what is that called? Right. Capitalism.

Oh, and of course I cancelled my newsletter subscription.

Reason and Liberty Central among Top Thirty Objectivist Blogs

Looks like Reason and Liberty Central made it on this list of the "30 Best Blogs for Exploring Objectivism."

It's an article on a site apparently marketing online degrees, but their articles are quite interesting, so check it out if you want.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Boris Johnson, What Have You Done?

Some public-spirited oiks were about to off that hippie bitch, Franny Armstrong, but hizzoner had to play the knight on a shiny bicycle.

We learn a very ecological lesson: Everything in nature has its purpose. Oiks kill hippies, so that hippies cannot blow up humans.

If man interferes with this fragile balance of nature, it is man who suffers in the end. If oiks are hunted, they cannot kill hippies, and hippies will murder humans.

The circle of life…

(Dude, not funny? Franny, you asked for it.)

Monday, October 04, 2010

Meanwhile, Back in the Cave…

Franny Armstrong's YouTube broadcast from the cave next to Osama Bin Laden's was a resounding success… Unfortunately for her, it was a success for the libertarian/capitalist/consumerist/"carbon"-producing camp…

Maybe Detroit should build her a monument.

11oss: The adverts showing people who disagree with her being blown up have convinced me to go and buy a V8. Her carbon footprint is ok because she is important than me. Nice

Nikopolis1912: After seeing this video, I must go and turn on a few lights, run an empty washing machine, leave the car idling in the drive and have a bonfire just for the hell of it.

WanderingRover: Dear Franny and 1010global…

Maybe killing innocent men, women, and children in the name of environmentalism seems like dark, edgy humor to you, but I think you should consider that you're running a global initiative, and some of the countries you list on your home page are the kinds of places where in living memory innocent men, women, and children really were murdered by smug, repulsive bastards to serve somebody else's great cause.

In closing, fuck you. And this time I mean what I'm saying.

reddycelt: Boycott Sony, the source of money behind these fuckwits. They should be shot.

libertopian: These freaks need to be stopped.

kisemuk: After seeing this I have just turned on my air conditioner and an extra heater. Tomorrow I am going to chop down a tree before heading off to buy some giant spotlights, I need to increase my carbon footprint.

escobari: I'm going to breathe and fart 10% more

blogegog: It's going to be difficult to raise my carbon footprint by 10%, but I'm going to try. We've ALL got to try, people. If we don't, the world will become filled with hippie vegetarians like this lady. This cannot happen.

tmack62: Wow! This really is her religion. No wonder she doesn't need to really look at the evidence and use logic. She operates on faith driven by a need to give her life meaning.

mntccd: Imagine having to spend five minutes with this woman. The crazy, it burns.

Her hatred of normal people is palpable.

4wdweather: 10:10 can never be taken seriously again — you're history

nosehair515: maybe if she was prettier guys would like her and she wouldn't feel the need to arrogantly talk about not true things

RachelBartlett: I am so tempted to flag this braindead ecofascist propaganda as promoting genocide and crimes against humanity.

WeAreTheBritish: I am personally going to RAISE my carbon emissions by a minimum of 10% and I urge everyone to do the same

equinoxranch: Embrace Totalitarianism.

10% leads to 20% which leads to 30% which leads to 40% which leads to.............. your heretofore normal life controlled by these dictatorial nut jobs.

Meanwhile, the public-spirited campaign to raise "carbon" emissions by ten percent is gathering steam around the globe:

disco!!!!: what the fk was that

the temperature of my urine has hit somewhere near boiling point

so instead of purchasing a small economic diesel for a winter run around I'm going to hunt for some sort of luxo barge with a minimum of a v8 strapped to the front of it

I'll do my 10% you fking pricks

Xaero: I thought it was a joke at first. Are the people in it supporting the campaign to stop climate change or taking the piss out of green ecomentalists?

As it turns out it was real... I'm a bit shocked. I mean they kill school children to get their point across : | With an explosive set inside them. Isn't that worse than Hitler?

I didn't mind "doing my bit" before, although I wouldn't take too kindly to be told I have to hit a target when it comes to cutting emission. The fact they are happy to kill people for disagreeing, makes me want to burn all the world's fuel by flying a Concorde around the planet until it's all gone.

hornet: They've actually made Osama Bin Laden seem rational. That's rather special.

If found that if I want to fly a 707, I have to either fly to Libya or Romania or ask John Travolta for a ride. Hmm… I guess I'll go with Travolta.

During the flight, he can tell me all about scientology. Can't be worse than environmentalism.

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Eco-Terrorists Declare War on Mankind!

It is in vain, dude, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, peace, peace — but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms!

(Hat tip to John Stossel.)



So that's how All Gore got his name!

If you never understood why they're not properly called "greens" (though they sure vegetate) or "environmentalists," but eco-terrorists, or why Ayn Rand correctly identified them as anti-man, now you have proof from the horses' asses' mouths.

Apparently, we threaten the eco-terrorists' existence by breathing, using power, and stuff, or at least they're deluded enough to believe that:

"What to do with those people, who are together threatening everybody's existence on this planet? Clearly we don't really think they should be blown up, that's just a joke for the mini-movie, but maybe a little amputating would be a good place to start?" jokes 10:10 founder and stupid film maker Franny Armstrong.

They must have amputated her brain…

Well, if the eco-terrorists want a civil war, they can get it. We'll win it hands down.

After all, they can't use jetfighters (emissions), tanks (depleted uranium), or even lowly handguns (lead pollution). OK, eco-terrorists, draw your sticks and stones, and make my day.

(As for that half-assed apology, you can shove it next to your head. One false move, and I amputate the shortest appendage of your unwashed hippie body.)

Update:

So what's the result of their stupidity?

Currently boycotting Gillian Anderson. Boycotting Richard Curtis, too, though I never heard of that limey fucktard.

Planning to fly somewhere, in spite of the airport nazis. Does anyone know what airline has the best fleet in terms of emissions? Anyone still have 707s or Concordes? :P

Stay Away from Dubai

Public Service Announcement

Surfing the web Doing research, I came across this here gem. If you think the fascist US drug laws are, well, fascist, get a load of this.

…urgent warning to all travelers to or through Dubai and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) generally to ensure they are completely free of any substances prohibited by that country.

The warning comes after Fair Trials International learnt this week that one of its clients, 43-year-old Middlesex man Keith Andrew Brown, has been sentenced to 4 years' imprisonment after 0.003g of cannabis was found in the tread of his shoe by customs officials in Dubai during transit from Ethiopia to London last September. This amount would not be visible to the naked eye, and weighs less than a single grain of sugar.

"We have seen a steep increase in such cases over the last 18 months. Customs authorities are using highly sensitive new equipment to conduct extremely thorough searches on travelers and if they find any amount — no matter how minute — it will be enough to attract a mandatory 4 year prison sentence," said Fair Trials International Chief Executive Catherine Wolthuizen.

"Moreover, the list of banned substances in UAE includes many medications available over-the-counter in other countries, such as codeine — a common ingredient in pain relief and cold-and-flu medication, as well as poppy seeds — a common baking ingredient.

"What many travelers may not realize is that they can be deemed to be in possession of such banned substances if they can be detected in their urine or bloodstream, or even in tiny, trace amounts on their person. We even have reports of the imprisonment of a Swiss man for 'possession' of 3 poppy seeds on his clothing after he ate a bread roll at Heathrow.

"With UAE becoming one of the most popular tourist and transit destinations in the world — in part due to extensive marketing of its beaches and shops — travelers need to know the risks they face if they are not completely clean of any banned substance or do not have a prescription for any medication they are carrying.

"For this reason, we have today published a comprehensive list of banned pharmaceuticals on our website and urge travelers to check any medication they may be carrying, and ensure their clothing is completely free of any banned substance before they fly," concluded Ms. Wolthuizen.

Yeah, sure. Like you could be sure to get all the poppy seeds out.

Just stay the fuck away from that hellhole.

(From 2008, but one may assume nothing has changed. At least Wikipedia says so.)

So don't chase your internet-addicted kids away from their computers. Surfing can save your life. Or at least four years of it.