PC WATCH Mirror by John Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.)

POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH The creeping dictatorship of the Left...

The primary version of "Political Correctness Watch" is HERE The Blogroll; John Ray's Home Page; Email John Ray here. Other mirror sites: Greenie Watch, Dissecting Leftism. This site is updated several times a month but is no longer updated daily. (Click "Refresh" on your browser if background colour is missing). See here or here for the archives of this site.

Postmodernism is fundamentally frivolous. Postmodernists routinely condemn racism and intolerance as wrong but then say that there is no such thing as right and wrong. They are clearly not being serious. Either they do not really believe in moral nihilism or they believe that racism cannot be condemned!

Postmodernism is in fact just a tantrum. Post-Soviet reality in particular suits Leftists so badly that their response is to deny that reality exists. That they can be so dishonest, however, simply shows how psychopathic they are.


15 January, 2014

Welfare dependent multiculturalist is jailed for seven years for possessing live ammunition and dealing Class A drugs

Benefits Street star Black Dee has been jailed for seven years for keeping live ammunition in her home - where she ran an 'open-all-hours' drug business.

Samora Roberts, 34, was found in possession of over £5,000 of Class A drugs as well as bullets which she hid in a pink trainer under a washing basket.

She admitted seven counts of possessing cannabis with intent to supply and was found guilty of possessing crack cocaine and heroin.

 Roberts was also found guilty of two counts of possessing 11 .38 Smith and Wesson cartridges without a firearms certificate.

Judge Philip Parker QC jailed Roberts for seven years at Birmingham Crown Court where he accused her of running an open-all-hours' drug business from her home on James Turner Street, which was better known as the location of Channel Four's Benefits Street.

Roberts and Omari George, 22, were found with seven packages of crack cocaine totalling over 194g - with a street value of over £5,000 - in a Ford Focus outside Roberts's home on the now notorious James Turner Street in the Winson Green area of Birmingham.

George, along with Tina Thomas, 48, both admitted possessing cannabis with intent to supply.

The court heard how Roberts was filmed by undercover officers carrying out drug deals in her home in the Winson Green area of Birmingham, and £5,250-worth of crack cocaine was found in a Ford Focus outside the property.

'Miss Roberts is now 33 and has come before the courts before, in particular in relation to drug matters.

'In October 2001 in Jamaica, she was dealt with for attempting to export and supply cannabis, for which she served a relatively short custodial sentence.'


Woman raised money for a homeless couple to stay in a 'nice, warm' hotel for Christmas - only for them to trash the room and cause £1,000 worth of damage

Jesus said:  "The poor ye always have with you".  Below is an example of why.  The poor are often poor because they behave badly

A woman who raised money so that a homeless couple could have a 'nice, warm Christmas' in a hotel was left devastated after they trashed the room and caused £1,000 worth of damage.

Louise Elliott, 32, and her friend Becky Mcsorley launched a Facebook appeal to pay for Lewis Holley, his girlfriend Stacey and their dog Bonnie to stay at the Ibis Hotel in Crawley, West Sussex over the festive season.

Twenty-five kind-hearted strangers responded and in just a few days the friends had raised £640 to cover the cost of the accommodation for 10 nights, from December 24 until January 2.

It later emerged the couple had also tried to cut the stay short after just one night, asking staff if they could check out on Christmas Day and receive £576 in cash instead of the remaining nine nights.

After learning of the damage, Miss Elliott, who has five sons, took to Facebook to 'apologise to anyone that donated to help these people', adding 'to say I am disappointed is an understatement'.

Miss Elliott, from Reigate, Surrey, said she and Miss Mcsorley decided to raise money for Mr Holley, known as Piper, after organising a collection of clothes to donate to homeless people in London.

Friends and neighbours suggested raising money for a cause closer to home, and a number suggested helping 'Piper', a well-known figure in Crawley, because he was 'so nice'.

Miss Elliott said that when she first approached the couple they were overwhelmed by the offer, saying they were 'so grateful' and that it would be an 'amazing' opportunity.

She posted an appeal on Facebook in the week before Christmas and within five days had raised £640.

One woman donated £120 and two of Miss Elliott's children each put £10 of their birthday money towards the fund, determined to give back to others over Christmas.

The money was far more than she had expected and was enough to pay for 10 nights in the hotel.

'When I went to tell them, they were over the moon,' Miss Elliott said. 'Stacey was crying she was so happy. And we all felt good.'

She dropped the couple off at the hotel where another friend had organised a hamper for Mr Holley, Stacey and Bonnie to enjoy. She even included non-alcoholic wine as the couple said they didn't drink.

Miss Elliott said: 'We felt really good. We thought we had done such a good thing because it was cold and it was rainy and they were sleeping in a tent.'

She started to think something was wrong when the couple text her while she was on her way to collect them from the hotel on January 2.

They said they had made their own way back into town but they were once again sleeping rough as 'someone had stolen their tent'. Wary they might want more money, Miss Elliott stayed away.

It wasn't until January 5, when Miss Elliott was on holiday with her children in Disneyland Paris, that the hotel contacted her to tell her the couple had caused some £1,000 in damages.

The window was badly cracked and has to be replaced, someone had tried to rip the TV off the wall and the carpet was so badly damaged it needs to be replaced.

The mattress was also 'left in a state' and the couple had taken the duvet. It took two members of staff two hours to clear all the rubbish out of the room.  

Miss Elliott said: 'The hotel phoned and said "we just want you to know what happened. We are not chasing damages" and my heart just sank. 'I thought, "oh my God. What have they done? How could they do that?" It is just unreal.'

Neither of the mobile numbers Miss Elliott had for the couple worked but she encouraged the hotel to pursue the matter with the police. 'I just felt so angry and so bad for the hotel staff,' she added. 

Miss Elliott said that the experience has taught her 'you can't take anyone's word' and that 'she won't do anything like this again'. 

Adding it was worse because it was 'other people's money at such an important time of year'.  She said: 'We feel like fools. It was the time of year for goodwill and generosity. 'So many kind people went out their way to try and do something nice at Christmas but it has turned into a nightmare. I am so sorry for the people who gave money.'

Hotel manager Sam White confirmed that the damage would cost around £1,000 to fix, adding he had 'never seen a room that bad in my many years of hotel management'.


General Warns: Military Will Face 'Great Pressure' to Lower Standards for Women in Combat to Please ‘Agenda-Driven’ in D.C.

Marine Gen. John Kelly, commander of the U.S. Southern Command, said at a Pentagon press briefing on Friday that he believes that future generals will face “great pressure” to lower the standards for women in combat in order to get more women into combat roles.

“My greatest fear---and we see this happen a lot over the 45 years I've been in the Armed Forces--is right now they're saying we are not going to change any standards,” said Kelly. “There will be great pressure, whether it's 12 months from now, four years from now, because the question will be asked whether we've let women into these other roles, why aren't they staying in those other roles?

“Why aren't they advancing as infantry people—persons--I guess? Why aren't they becoming, you know, more senior?” he said. “And the answer is--I think will be--if we don't change standards, it will be very, very difficult to have any numbers, any real numbers, come into the infantry, or the Rangers or the Seals, but that's their business.”

“So,” said Kelly, “I think it will be the pressure for not probably the generals that are here now, but for the generals to come, and admirals, to lower standards because that's the only way it'll work in the way that I hear some people, particularly, the agenda-driven people here in Washington--or in the land--the way they want it to work.

Here is the complete transcript of the question a reporter asked Kelly and Kelly’s answer:

Question: I have a question. I have a question. Women in combat. Of course, the Marines were against opening all ground combat jobs to women. They were overruled by the defense secretary. The Marine report found that mixed-gender units were less lethal, slower, more prone to injuries than all-male units.

Talk about the way ahead on this. How can they put this into effect, what concerns you in the way ahead with this?

Gen. Kelly: I would just offer that I believe, given the mission in of the United States Armed Forces to fight the nation's wars, I believe that every decision we make, whether it's a personnel decision, Tom, or an acquisition, a new airplane, a new whatever widget, I think every decision has to be looked at only one filter, and that is, does it make us more lethal on the battlefield?

Will it end up -- will it result in less casualties on our side? Will it end up in less casualties on the other side, because they're human beings, too. Some of them very much deserve to be killed but others don't, and so that's the filter.

So if you look at anything we are contemplating doing, does it make us more lethal? If the answer to that is do it -- is yes, then do it. If the answer to that is no, clearly don't do it. If the answer to that is, it shouldn't hurt, I would suggest that we shouldn't do it, because it might hurt.

So that's in my opinion. The way I think you do this is, since we're all ordered to do it, is you simply do it. My greatest fear -- and we see this happen a lot over the 45 years I've been in the Armed Forces is, right now they're saying we are not going to change any standards. There will be great pressure, whether it's 12 months from now, four years from now, because the question will be asked whether we've let women into these other roles, why aren't they staying in those other roles?

Why aren't they advancing as infantry people -- persons, I guess? Why aren't they becoming, you know, more senior and the answer is, I think will be, if we don't change standards, it will be very, very difficult to have any numbers -- any real numbers come into the infantry, or the Rangers or the Seals, but that's their business.

So we have very small numbers anyways. And then, the only science I know on this was not the Marine study, it was the study that the Marine Corps contracted the University of Pittsburgh, I think. The other aspect is, because of the nature of infantry combat, infantry training, and all of rest, there's a higher percentage of young women in the scientific study that get hurt, and some of them get hurt forever.

So I think it will be the pressure for not probably the generals that are here now, but for the generals to come, and admirals, to lower standards because that's the only way it'll work in the way that I hear some people, particularly, the agenda-driven people here in Washington -- or in the land, the way they want it to work


Rise of the female sex pest: Think it’s only men who harass colleagues with wandering hands and crude taunts? Not any more

Arriving late to a drinks party, I looked across the bar and spotted a former colleague, who beckoned me over.  She was perched at a high table, one arm languorously coiled around the neck of the very young man by her side.

Although well-preserved, in an expensive, highly maintained kind of way, I knew this woman would be seeing 50 before too long. I also knew she’d been happily married for more than 20 years, and has children not much younger than the man she was drooling over, as if he was a rare steak on a platter.

‘Angela, come and meet Ryan,’ she said. ‘He’s just joined my firm. Isn’t he simply delicious?’

Ryan looked terrified. Ensnared by an older woman - his professional superior, no less - he was clearly clueless as to how to deal with the situation. No wonder the minute his boss loosened her grip to talk to me, he shot off like a rat up a drainpipe, but not before enduring a humiliating slap on the bottom as he made his retreat.

I caught his eye as he ran, and recognised something I thought I’d never see this side of the Seventies. Though he was trying to laugh it off, I saw the desperation of a subordinate being sexually harassed.

Whereas, in the past, it would have been a female office junior, hiding in the toilets at the office party from a predatory male boss, now the roles were reversed.

I’d like to say this cringe-inducing display was an anomaly - the drunken slip-up of a middle-aged woman who’d wake up burning with shame in the morning - but that wasn’t the case. My ex-colleague saw nothing wrong in her behaviour. ‘It’s just a bit of fun, darling,’ she scoffed when I challenged her.

If anything, she saw it as entirely justified, a retrospective ‘fingers up’ at all the sexism she’d to endure from middle-aged men on her own climb to the top.

There are many like her. Unashamed and brazen, the female groper operates with impunity, unlike her male counterpart who fears a summons to a tribunal should he linger too long when greeting a female subordinate.

Caught in uncharted, dangerous territory, young male victims are left confused and vulnerable. Should they complain and risk a ribbing from male colleagues while incurring the vengeful wrath of their female boss? Or just ‘man up’ and put up with it? It all feels so sadly familiar.

No wonder cases of men complaining about sexual harassment in the workplace are increasing: a third of men reported some sort of inappropriate attention in the workplace during a recent survey.

I couldn’t help thinking of the case of Neil Fox, the DJ cleared of historic sexual assault charges.

Interviewed afterwards, Fox said of one accuser, a former colleague: ‘There were times when I would easily wander by and slap her bum, touch her on the way past. If I thought anyone was uncomfortable with that, I wouldn’t do it. She joined in high-spirited banter, funny chats - none of this would in any way have offended her.’

Oh really? I suspect the woman ‘wasn’t offended’ in the same way the poor soul I could now see, clearly hiding behind a pillar, ‘wasn’t offended’. And other young men like him, all over the country.

One friend, an ambitious financial strategist at a large blue-chip company, told me he’d avoided the firm’s Christmas party because of the way some female colleagues behave towards him.

Already the recipient of relentless female office commentary about his gym-honed body, he told me he simply wasn’t prepared to endure the harassment masquerading as ‘fun’ that inevitably awaited him. It was so much easier, he said, to simply stay at home.

So why should there be one rule for women and one for men? Last year, 23-year-old digital marketing co-ordinator Poppy Smart sparked a storm by reporting wolf-whistling builders in Worcester to the police.

It seems utterly unjust that women baulk at being wolf-whistled at, yet Coca-Cola built an entire advertising campaign on a beefy, shirtless window cleaner who titillates the office typing pool by drinking a can of Diet Coke outside their window. Perhaps the female groper - sexually confident, financially independent and emancipated by equality of opportunity - feels a sense of entitlement. She lets her hands wander and laces her patter with double entendres because she feels it is an unabashed right.

The female groper also believes, perhaps, that men can take it. Yet many can’t. Militant feminism may have succeeded in emasculating men on so many levels.

Yet it continues to turn its back on the thought of men also being the victim. Groups such as Everyday Sexism clamour loudly - and rightly - about harassment, but remain silent when it comes to male victims.

According to Danielle Ayres, an employment lawyer with Gorvins Solicitors, sexual harassment clearly applies to men and women, since it is a form of discrimination under the Equality Act.

Yet through the course of her work, Danielle points out that women are much more likely to raise complaints than men.

‘Perhaps it does happen more frequently to women. But I doubt the disparity in the number of complaints is purely due to men being the main perpetrators.

‘Nor do I think it’s because women are more sensitive or more easily offended either. ‘The women brave enough to complain feel they have a genuine grievance. Rather it’s more likely that more women complain because men are more reluctant to say anything.

‘They may feel they’ll lose face if they complain. Or that they won’t be taken seriously.’

Maybe, then, the female groper is able to flourish because of the cliched vicious circle. She does it because she can. And because she can, she does it.

It’s a knock-on effect that breeds an atmosphere of acceptance, all too familiar in the recent Yewtree investigations, where quite repulsive, predatory behaviour of celebrities such as Stuart Hall and Rolf Harris was seen as normal - and often copied. On this last point, I hold up my own, occasionally wandering hands, and admit how easy it is to fall into tactile behaviour or gentle sexual banter with men.

Take the time a few weeks ago when I bumped into a former colleague who had lost more than a stone since I’d last seen him. We’ve always had a gently humorous working relationship.

So I found myself commenting how he was ‘quite the hottie’ these days. I even asked him to give me a twirl (he demurred) before patting his arm and asking what had prompted him to venture into ‘centrefold territory’.

He took my remarks in good spirit. Perhaps he loved the attention, as many men may do. But what if he was, as Danielle Ayres suggests, putting on a front?

And there’s more. Last month, after completing a project with a group of colleagues, we began discussing a celebration dinner.

Steve, a good-looking man in his 30s, said he’d be unable to make the proposed date. ‘Oh no,’ cried one of the women, ‘what will we have for hors d’oeuvre?’

I cringed inside, but laughed just as loudly as everyone else.

Driving home, I replayed the scene. What if the ‘hors d’oeuvre’ comment had been made to me, by a group of men, as a young, ambitious reporter? What if it happens to my daughter, in future years, joining colleagues for a bonding, post-work glass of wine? I could feel the indignation rising up in me like a flush.

Conversely, I remember interviewing a fairly high-profile businessman who admitted that, at one firm where he’d worked, a female colleague regularly directed lewd remarks towards him and would often pinch his bottom in the corridor.

He told her to stop, but she didn’t. His reprieve came only when she left the company - with a glowing reference and unblemished character. Why didn’t he make an official complaint? He felt he couldn’t do so because he couldn’t bear to think how ‘making a fuss’ would go down at the partners’ meeting.

The female groper is not taken as seriously as the male one. So she continues apace, dispensing unwelcome caresses and inappropriate conversation because she is a woman, and because she can.

As for myself, after watching the unedifying spectacle of poor old Ryan, I have every intention of keeping my hands and my wit to myself in future.

I just wish my ‘sisters’ could do the same.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


14 January, 2014

TV reporter freaked by a man of Middle Eastern appearance

Probably another sex-deprived Muslim

A Los Angeles television reporter was nearly attacked by a man during a live broadcast, in a terrifying incident caught on camera.

Popular KTLA reporter Mary Beth McDade was covering a story about fans mourning the death of David Bowie at his star on the Walk of Fame around 10.07pm on Monday night.

At the start of her live report, a man wearing a grey hooded sweatshirt can be seen standing behind her smiling along with several other people.

In the footage, you can see the man approaching her from behind, as she speaks to the anchors back in the studio on live television.

'Rick and Cher, you know, he was known for breaking down barriers, and...' McDade said seconds before belting out a scream as the camera man quickly panned the lens away pointing at KTLA's news van.

A shaky image of the perpetrator running away was caught on camera for a few seconds before the station started airing McDade's pre-recorded news story about Bowie.

McDade said the man brushed up against her while making a lewd, sexual remark.

Los Angeles Police Department spokesman Officer Mike Lopez told the Los Angeles Times that the incident was not considered 'an attack' and that no one was injured.

Two officers from LAPD's Hollywood Division arrived on the scene moments after the startling incident.

McDade later posted a photo to Instagram with the two officers and wrote: 'Hi!! Thank you all for your concern!! :) I am alright!  'And thank u #lapd for taking a report & trying to catch the guy.'

Lopez said that police are investigating the incident as disturbing the peace and are still searching for the suspect.


Another false rape accusation from Britain

The Brits do often jail false accusers. One hopes they do that this time too

Louis Richardson, the former secretary of Durham University's prestigious Union Society, has been cleared of rape and three counts of sexual assault

The mother of a Durham University student who was today cleared of rape and sexual assault has been embraced by his mother Judy outside court who sobbed as she told him: 'I love you'.

The family of 21-year-old Louis Richardson have described their 15 months of 'absolute hell' as they thanked the jury for 'justice'.

Jurors took less than three hours to clear him of four charges against two different women following a six-day trial at Durham Crown Court.

The history student and former secretary of the university's prestigious Union Society had been accused of raping one woman when she was 'crazy drunk' before sexually assaulting another as she lay ill in bed at a house party.

During the trial, his parents Judy, 48, and Simon, 51, had held hands as intimate details of their son's sex life were revealed to the court.

Today, a statement read on their behalf said: 'It has been 15 months of absolute hell for the whole family. We are relieved that justice has been done and would like to thank the jury.'

When Mr Richardson was asked to comment, he said: 'I would rather just let it sink in.'  As the verdicts were announced earlier today, he had remained motionless.

Mr Richardson, from Jersey, was charged with raping one woman in March 2014 and allegedly assaulting her at a party two months later.  He was also accused of two counts sexual assault on another woman in October 2014.

After the allegations were made, he was suspended from his studies and also forced to step down from his Union Society position.

During the trial, the prosecution presented Mr Richardson as a 'creepy' opportunist who forced himself on two young women who were unable to defend themselves.

The first alleged victim had claimed Richardson raped her following a night out together at a club in Durham. She said he allegedly told her the next morning that she was 'bad in bed' because she was 'unresponsive'.

The woman alleged that he went on to sexually assault her at a party by pulling down her dress to reveal her breasts to a friend.

But Richardson, who was born in Truro and moved to St Helier when he was four, told the court that he had had consensual sex with the woman on the night of the alleged rape.

He said they slept together often and continued to do so 'very frequently' after the alleged incident.

In the closing statement to the jury, the woman was accused by Philippa McAtasney QC of being the 'queen of mixed messages' and of demeaning 'genuine rape victims'.

The jury heard that the woman, a fellow undergraduate, went on a double date with him and another couple and even cuddled him in bed in the weeks after the incident.

She also flirted with Richardson in a series of text messages, in which she called him a 'sexy menace' and sent him a picture of her breasts, before telling him: 'I'll let you spank me.'

Defending, Ms McAtasney said the woman's behaviour in the aftermath of the alleged rape was not that of someone who had been taken advantage of.

She described the complainant as a 'highly manipulative, dishonest, dangerous young woman' and accused her of inventing the account to 'salve her cheating conscience' because she had a boyfriend at the time of the alleged rape.

Richardson told the court that his alleged victim's boyfriend had posed as her online to accuse him of the sexual assault. 

He said he received a Facebook message apparently from the woman saying they couldn't speak to each other any more because she didn't want to 'lose' her boyfriend. 

Richardson told a jury he was 'devastated', but replied 'fair enough' and decided it was best to 'take it on the chin'.

However, a more serious message followed, saying: 'I have been doing some thinking. I consider our last time rape. I said no and you did it anyway. I ask you not to contact me again... active immediately.'

Richardson said he then received a text from the woman saying that she had not sent the messages, and adding: 'He wrote it.' Asked what he made of the online conversation, he said it seemed as if the woman's boyfriend was 'intervening'.

He told the court: 'I knew I had not raped her. I knew she knew I had not raped her. I thought it was seeming like a petty threat done by a boyfriend who was probably a bit over-paranoid.'

Richardson said he was 'shocked and devastated' when he was arrested for rape. 

Several months later, two university newspapers revealed he had been arrested, and a second woman claimed to police that he had indecently assaulted by stroking her indecently as she lay in bed during a student party.

When confronted about the incident by a friend of the woman in a Facebook exchange, Richardson wrote: 'I must apologise profusely to all parties concerned.' 

Richardson, who was debating politics with others in the room at the time, admitted to police he 'probably touched her on the breast', but said the woman – a student at another university – had moved his hand there.


Multiculturalism Trumps Protecting Women From Rape

By Dennis Prager

Since the scores of New Year’s Eve sexual attacks on German women by hundreds of men identified as Arab or North African, the left in Germany has faced a dilemma: which to fight for first — women’s human rights or multiculturalism?

This was the same dilemma that faced British authorities between 1997 and 2013. During those six years at least 1,400 girls from the age of 11 in just one English city (Rotherham, population 275,000) were raped by gangs of men, nearly all of whom were immigrants (mostly from Pakistan) or their sons.

But British authorities kept silent. Why?

In 2014, the reason finally was revealed: The perpetrators were Muslim, and British authorities were therefore afraid to publicize — or often even investigate — the crimes. They feared being branded Islamophobic and racist. Politicians on the left and right acknowledged this fact.

As I wrote in a column in 2014:

“In 2002, a Labor Party MP from nearby Keighley, Ann Cryer, complained to the police about ‘young Asian lads’ raping girls in her constituency. In her words, she ‘was shunned by elements of her party.’ And note, that as is demanded by the left in the UK, she didn’t even mention that the rapists were Pakistani, lest Muslims be blamed for this evil. They were ‘Asian lads.’”

The British Home Secretary, Theresa May, told Parliament that “institutionalized political correctness” was responsible for the lack of attention given to the mass rape.

In other words, between protecting over a thousand girls from repeated gang rape and protecting Muslims from being identified as the rapists, British authorities chose to protect multiculturalism and “diversity.” In the competition between multiculturalism and one of the most elementary instincts and obligations of higher civilization — the protection of girls and women from sexual violence — higher civilization lost.

The U.K. is of course not alone in having multiculturalism and the fear of being branded racist or Islamophobic take precedence over protecting girls and women. Some German authorities' reaction to the events of New Year’s Eve in Cologne exemplified this.

After the attacks in Cologne, the mayor of Cologne suggested, in the words of The New York Times, “that women can protect themselves from men on the streets by keeping them more than an arm’s length away.”

In the mayor’s words: “It is always possible to keep a certain distance that is longer than an arm’s length.”

Aside from the moral foolishness of the comment, it is factually incorrect. It is often impossible to keep an arm’s length distance from others — as, for example, on a crowded bus or train, or, as in Cologne on New Year’s Eve, on crowded streets.

It is important to note two things about the mayor. One is that she has been among Germany’s most vociferous advocates of accepting 800,000 Syrian refugees into Germany.

The other is that she is a woman.

One would assume that a woman would instinctively wholly condemn the sexual predators rather than lecture women on the distance they should always keep from men in order to avoid being attacked. But the mayor, like the British authorities, has opted for multiculturalism over human and women’s rights, for fighting Islamophobia over fighting to protect women.

A related example is Ralf Jaeger, the interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia state, the German state in which Cologne is located. The left-wing minister said: “What happens on the right-wing platforms and in chat rooms is at least as awful as the acts of those assaulting the women.”

All the isms of the left — multiculturalism, feminism, environmentalism, socialism, Marxism, egalitarianism — distort the individual’s and society’s moral compass. But, as the minister’s comments make clear, none do so more than the left’s loathing of conservatives and conservative values.

As with multiculturalism, a left-wing priority — in this case destroying the right — has distorted the left’s moral compass. How could anyone in his right mind write that right-wing platforms and chat rooms are “at least as awful” as women being sexually attacked and even raped by gangs of men? The answer is that you cannot be in your right mind; you have to be in your left mind.


Racial consciousness is thriving

I’ve always loathed the phrase ‘people of colour’. It’s awkward and dehumanising – one of those PC phrases that somehow manages to be more ‘Othering’ than the alternative. But I’ve been hearing a lot of it over the past year. The phrase, popularised by Eighties anti-racist activists, has crept into the mainstream – into newspaper columns, campus debates and Twitter slanging matches. That along with the execrable tweeism ‘black folks’.

There’s something in this. Among young politicos in particular, a new politics of race arose in 2015. Some of it is familiar and old-school, growing up around issues of police brutality and social inequality, but much of it is quintessentially modern, draped in therapeutic concerns about ‘racial consciousness’, ‘microaggressions’ and ‘cultural appropriation’. But what unifies it all is a troubling desire to erect racial boundaries – a call for black people to adopt the role of the victim and for white people to self-flagellate in a corner.

The discussion about race has been more live in the West than it has been in years. From protests against police brutality to Oxford students demanding ‘Rhodes Must Fall’, there is a sense that racism is not only alive and well but more insidious than ever. Everything from ‘offensive’ statues to racist coppers is seen as part of the same existential threat. This stoked-up sense of racial peril has not only conflated genuine concerns about persisting inequalities with mere thin-skinned offence-taking — it has also worked to rehabilitate race, to give it a PC make-over.

In 2015 there was a constant insistence not on unity or solidarity, but on difference. There is a new racialism festering, which springs not from white supremacist gunmen, policemen with itchy trigger fingers or the bluster of Donald Trump, but from those who deign to call themselves anti-racist. And in almost every corner of modern life this year, its divisive presence was felt.

On college campuses, the rise of microaggressions has made socialising a fraught activity. The brain-child of Seventies academics, microaggressions is the idea that white people’s clumsy comments can destroy black people’s self-esteem and contribute to their macro-oppression. Colleges across the US, including Oberlin, Carleton and Willamette, maintain lengthy lists of verboten phrases, and it’s starting to catch on in the UK, too.

More often than not, microaggressions amount to little more than impertinent questions: asking where someone is ‘really from’ or if you can touch their hair. But as well as implying that black people are incapable of challenging someone’s clumsy comments without running to the authorities, they encourage a kind of paranoid racial etiquette, where we are told to treat people differently depending on their skin colour. When it was discovered this year that UCLA included the statement ‘I don’t believe in race’ on its list of microaggressions, the divisive trajectory of it all was laid bare.

Then there’s the cultural realm. Under the new racialism, you see, it’s not only people who must be separated into our own convenient boxes — so must culture be. That most risible of 2015 trends – the rise of ‘cultural appropriation’ – has seen white people lambasted for rapping, wearing corn rows or just doing a yoga class. The fact that all artistic and cultural movements are built on borrowing – and that from rock’n’roll to rap this exchange has played a big role in bringing people of different backgrounds together – seems to have done nothing to dent this toxic idiocy.

But most tragically of all is the influence the new racialism has had on politics. Time and again this year, political campaigns on racial issues have focused not on collective strength and solidarity, but on vulnerability and division. Black Lives Matter (BLM), the hashtag-turned-direction-action-group, responds to each police killing of black people by hosting ‘die-ins’ or marches where so-called white allies are encouraged to hang to the back or hold up signs repenting for their ‘white privilege’. Meanwhile, protests at the University of Missouri and elsewhere over allegations of discrimination have focused on demands for ‘racial-awareness training’.

At every turn, race is reified. Revelations that leaders in black-activist organisations, including the NAACP’s Rachel Dolezal and (allegedly) BLM’s Shaun King, are in fact white, should come as no surprise. In this toxic, racialised climate, political authority is calculated not on the basis of your arguments, or your support from a section of society, but from the position you claim for yourself in a hierarchy of oppression. That some white people are blacking up, and bolstering their credibility by cooking up fake hate crimes against themselves, is only a bizarre expression of the new politics of segregation.

March 2015 marked the 50th anniversary of the civil-rights marches from Selma to Montgomery in Alabama. Defiant in their Sunday best, those protesters were the antithesis of the victim-obsessed quasi-radical radicals we see today. Marching in spite of police beatings, targeted assassinations and constant threats from government for them to cease their activities or else, they refused to be cowed – and made it out the other end with undented optimism. On the steps of the Montgomery state capitol, Martin Luther King hailed the coming of ‘a day not of the white man, not of the black man’ but ‘the day of man as man’. In 2015, that day felt as far away as it’s ever been. 



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


13 January, 2016

"Asylum seeker" who raped devout Christian virgin, 21, twice before casually walking away is jailed for 10 years

An asylum seeker who raped a devout Christian virgin twice - leaving her feeling 'dirty' and fearing that she had HIV - has been jailed for 10 years.

Eritrean-born Mebrehtom Abrha, 25, of Birmingham, casually walked away after he subjected his victim to the harrowing four-minute ordeal.

Liverpool Crown Court heard how he dragged her off a pavement after she had been trying to find a taxi home from a night out.

The 21-year-old woman said she had found it hard to return to church as the attack had left her 'angry at god'.

In a victim impact statement read to the court, she said: 'I felt ashamed, dirty and unclean after I was raped.  'I still have to come to terms that I am still a virgin and it's still mine to give.  'Now I am getting tired of putting a brave face on when deep down I feel unsure that I will be fine.

'Going to church has always been in an important part of my life but since the attack I was not able to go to church for many months because I was angry at God and I was angry at myself for feeling this way.

'And the fear of contracting HIV was my worst nightmare.'

Abrha, who gained five year asylum to the UK in 2014, followed the woman for 10 minutes as she walked through Liverpool City Centre to her boyfriend's house on July 19 last year.

The court heard how she could not get a taxi and decided to walk the mile and a half route.

She was spotted on CCTV running past Crown Park with a jacket over her head to shelter her from the rain with Abrha following moments later, walking at a brisk pace.

Despite warnings not to cut through the park from her boyfriend, the woman was then confronted by the East African man before he dragged her off to a wooded area next to a church.

He then subjected her to a horrific attack, ripping open her dress before raping her and 'chillingly' walking away.

The attack left the woman covered in dirt and with injuries to her back and neck.  She ran to her boyfriend's house and he raised the alarm.

In her statement the victim admitted the attack had caused her to move house and find a new job as well as end her relationship with her boyfriend.

She added: 'I have lost any desire to do anything in my life.  'I didn't want to share food or drink with anyone as I felt too dirty and thought they would be disgusted if I did. 'I wasn't able to sleep alone for a long time and had to have the light on in my bedroom throughout every night.  'I feel terrified in the shower. I get the feeling that someone is going to get me and I start to panic.'

Abrha, who lived in Liverpool before fleeing to Birmingham, was arrested following a BBC Crimewatch appeal on October 12.

Michael O'Brien, defending him, told the court that his client had written a letter begging for forgiveness for the horrific crime. Reading the letter out in court, Mr O'Brien said: 'This was an un-Christian act and I did a horrible thing to this woman.  'I am very sorry for the crime I have committed and I ask for forgiveness.'

Abrha, who has no previous convictions and spoke only through a Tigrignan interpreter in the dock, was forced to flee his native country after being conscripted to the Eritrean army aged 18.

The court heard he claimed that he had no memory of the attack because he was too inebriated.  He held his hand to his eyes as David Aubrey QC sentenced him before he made the sign of the cross as he was led down in to custody.

Following the sentencing, Merseyside Police Detective Inspector Terry Davies, from the specialist Unity rape investigation team, said: 'Rape is a very personal crime, which many victims, understandably, struggle to come to terms with.

'It can have a devastating effect for the rest of their lives and there is no doubt that this had had a significant impact on his young victim, who will now have to live with this for her life.'


Now Swedish police are accused of covering up sex attacks after news blackout on migrant gang surrounding and molesting teenage girls at music festival

Swedish police have been accused of covering a number of sexual assaults on teenage girls at a music festival in Stockholm last summer - because a number of the suspects were underage refugees.

Teenage victims have spoken of being groped between the legs, while boys 'ran their hands' over their bodies in the crowds at the festival in August, but official police reports makes no mention of the assaults.

Police have now admitted to playing down the events at the We Are Sthlm festival last summer, as they feared the information could be used by right-wing campaigners for anti-immigrant propaganda.

'You only had to move a few feet to get grabbed. They pushed you in, and then one hand came out of nowhere and grabbed your breasts - or for some of my friends who wore dresses, between the legs,' Molly, 17, who attended the youth festival with four of her friends, told Expressen.

'You locked eyes with other girls who were standing with a guy behind them, and they looked like they were panicking.'

'If you said no, they were there with the hand again, if you pushed them away it egged them on and they called their mates. It was impossible to get away on your own.'

Roger Ticoalu, who heads Stockholm city government's events department, said Monday that a 'large part' of those detained were from Afghanistan, many carrying temporary ID-cards issued to asylum-seekers.

He said about 20 teenage girls filed complaints of sexual assault and that about 200 suspects were detained and ejected from the festival for sexual assault and other offenses. It wasn't immediately clear whether any of them were arrested and charged.

Ticoalu said organizers received reports already in 2014 of groups of young men and boys groping girls in a systematic manner. Efforts were put in place, including more security guards, to prevent a repeat in 2015 but instead the problem got worse, he said.

'We've always had individual cases' of sexual assault, he said. 'But here we have a larger group doing it almost in an organized way. It's a completely new level of obscenity.'

'You have a large group of boys surrounding the girls,' he said. 'They pretend to dance. They come closer and closer. Then they start touching their breasts and genitals. In some cases in combination with theft.'

However, despite what appears to have been dozens of sexual assaults, local police summarised the 2015 edition of the festival, aimed exclusively at teens from 13 to 19, as a quiet event.  'We had comparatively few crimes and few arrests considering the number of attendants,' a statement on Stockholm Police's website read.

The police have now been accused of 'hushing up' internal reports of sexual assaults filed during the youth festival, attended by some 170,000 teenagers in 2015, because the suspects were refugees.

Quoting sources within the force, Dagens Nyheter says Stockholm Police consciously avoids to report on phenomena which can be tied to perpetrators of a foreign background, because they fear it may be used as propaganda by right-wing politicians.

'This is a sore point. Sometimes we dare not tell how it is because we think it plays into the hands of the [right wing populist party] Sweden Democrats,' Stockholm police chief Peter Ågren, who was in charge of police at the event in 2014, told Dagens Nyheter.

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has today expressed his outrage at a potential cover up by police, firing off some stern words in an official statement.

'Police should prosecute crime, and sue guilty people. And should not for any kind of reason try to hide something. This is a problem and we are going to bring it to light.

'I feel a very strong wrath over the fact that you women can't go to a music festival without being violated, sexually harassed and attacked. This is a huge problem for those who are affected and for our entire nation. We will not back down an inch, and we will not turn our gaze.

Today, opposition leader Anna Kindberg-Batra has called interior minister Anders Ygeman to explain the alleged police cover up to the Parliamentary Committee of Justice.

'It is remarkable if police have been sending out an official story that the event was calm, but seeing a different story internally. This has to be investigated and we have to get to the bottom with this,' says Mr Ygeman of the Socialdemocrats Party.


Yes, Muslims Should Be Asked to Condemn Islamic Terror

Last week, an opinion piece appeared in the Washington Post that tells you much of what you need to know about the moral fabric and intellectual depth of the ACLU and much of the Left generally. Written by Rana Elmir, deputy director of the Michigan chapter of the ACLU, the title says it all: “Stop asking me to condemn terrorists just because I’m Muslim.”

Here is how her column begins: "As an American Muslim, I am consistently and aggressively asked — by media figures, religious leaders, politicians, and Internet trolls — to condemn terrorism to prove my patriotism. I emphatically refuse".

Even putting aside her refusal as a Muslim to condemn the greatest organized evil in the world, her misleading rhetoric is revealed by another aspect of the opening sentence. It is not to “prove [her] patriotism” that people ask her to condemn Muslim mass murder, torture, and sexual enslavement. It has nothing to do with patriotism. Decent people (including many decent Muslims) make this request for three other reasons.

The first is to ascertain the moral/religious views of that Muslim. The second is to ascertain how widespread Islamist views are among Muslims. And the third reason is to have as many Muslims as possible condemn Islamist violence in the hope that Muslims considering supporting or engaging in terror will think twice about doing so.

It is the most logical request people of goodwill can make when they ask Muslim spokespeople to react to atrocities committed by Muslims in the name of Islam. How else are non-Muslims to assess Islam and Muslims? If the Spanish Inquisition were taking place today, wouldn’t every Catholic spokesperson be asked if they condemn it?

Of course. But there is a difference. No one would have to ask Christians to condemn mass murder committed by tens of thousands of Christians in the name of Christ. Millions of Christians would have already spoken out and demonstrated against such a thing.

Or take Jews’ reactions to the 1994 murder of 29 Palestinian Arabs by a religious Israeli Jew, Baruch Goldstein. The Israeli prime minister at the time, Yitzhak Rabin, in an address to the Israeli parliament, said to the Knesset: You [Goldstein] are not part of the community of Israel. . . . You are not partners in the Zionist enterprise. You are a foreign implant. You are an errant weed. Sensible Judaism spits you out. You placed yourself outside the wall of Jewish law. . . . We say to this horrible man and those like him: You are a shame on Zionism and an embarrassment to Judaism.

Even the Jewish Settler Council, of which Goldstein was a member, declared that what Goldstein had done was “not Jewish, not humane.”

Israel’s Sephardi chief rabbi said, “I am simply ashamed that a Jew carried out such a villainous and irresponsible act.” And the Ashkenazi chief rabbi, Yisrael Meir Lau, labeled the murders “a desecration of God’s name” — which is the worst sin a Jew can commit. The then–chief rabbi of the United Kingdom, Jonathan Sacks, declared: “Such an act is an obscenity and a travesty of Jewish values.”

And all these Jewish condemnations were in reaction to the action of one Jew.

In 1982, rogue Lebanese Christian militiamen killed between 700 and 800 Palestinians in two refugee camps, Sabra and Shatila, in the Beirut area. Though no Israelis participated in the killings, Israel held itself responsible because it was the occupying power in that area at that time. In addition, approximately 400,000 Israelis — about 10 percent of the Israeli population — protested against their own government. It was the largest demonstration in Israel until that time.

That is what civilized and moral people are expected to do — condemn those who murder in their name. But, according to the ACLU official, such civilized, moral behavior is not expected of Muslims. Rather, in the age-old left-wing habit of reducing evil through moral equivalence, Elmir writes:

Just as [an American] I have never been asked to condemn Dylann Storm Roof’s attack on parishioners of a historic black church in South Carolina, Robert Dear’s attack on a Planned Parenthood facility, the murder of 20 children at Sandy Hook Elementary School, or the slaughter of moviegoers in Colorado or Louisiana, I will not be bullied into condemning terror perpetrated [by Muslim terrorists].

So there you go. If you ask Muslim spokespeople to condemn women in burqas, Muslim honor killings, Muslim annihilation of Christian communities in the Middle East, the massive support in Muslim countries for killing any Muslim who converts to another religion, or even just the atrocities of Islamic State, al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, al-Shabab, or the myriad other Muslim mass-murder organizations, you are a bully. You are the guilty party.

That is one of the more remarkable moral inversions of our time. But such is the moral universe of Ms. Elmir and the ACLU. In fact, just as we ask Muslims to condemn evil done by Muslims in the name of Islam, we should ask supporters and members of the ACLU to condemn this column written in the name of the ACLU. It’s that bad.


Never mind Rhodes – it’s the cult of the victim that must fall

What the rotten anti-Rhodes movement reveals about 2015

Rhodes Must Fall, the gang of spoilt Oxford brats who want a statue of the colonialist Cecil Rhodes removed from Oriel College, is being chalked up as another outburst of campus craziness. The media are having a field day mocking the hypocrisies and idiocies of the Rhodes-fearing students, one of whom is a Rhodes scholar — so he’ll take Rhodes’ cash but doesn’t want to look at his likeness — and all of whom describe walking past the statue as ‘an act of violence’. At the end of a year in which students have complained that doing yoga is ‘cultural appropriation’ and reading The Great Gatsby can trigger PTSD, Rhodes Must Fall is being viewed as the latest loopy pursuit of bookish youth who inhabit a different moral universe to the rest of us.

But to treat Rhodes Must Fall in this way is to miss a trick. For this movement is in fact infused with some very mainstream ways of thinking. The true engine of Rhodes Must Fall is the culture of victimhood, the view of the self as a hapless object to which things happen, upon which wicked words wreak havoc, a creature easily propelled into trauma by ideas or images or experiences. And that’s an idea which exists far beyond the quad of Oriel College, Oxford. Indeed, for all their pretences to radicalism — ironically fuelled by a media that treat them as extreme and exceptional — the Rhodes Must Fall people only express in gruff, Year Zero-style terms what is now one of the key, and most depressing, outlooks of the 21st-century West.

It is of course tempting just to slam the Rhodes Must Fall brigade. They typify today’s super-sensitive students, who fear the content of books and claim to be ‘triggered’ by the arrival on campus of anyone who has a different point of view to theirs. So they describe the statue of Rhodes as ‘aggressive’. They claim this stone representation of a man who plundered Africa harms black students. As I argued in a piece for Newsweek in August, Rhodes Must Fall is ISIS-like, sharing with those statue-smashing Islamists ‘a Year Zero attitude, a desire to rewrite history… to cleanse all remnants of a “problematic” past from the present’. This is the irony of today’s students who pose as caring: their flipside is a desire to destroy with extreme prejudice any idea or icon that offends them. They’re soft and tyrannical at the same time.

Yet Rhodes Must Fall is not some out-there group, as demonstrated by the fact that Oxford itself is kowtowing to it. It is better seen as a rougher expression of an everyday culture: the cult of the victim. The most striking thing about the Rhodes Must Fall activists is their self-negation of their moral autonomy, their reduction of themselves to mere products of history, created and damaged by historical circumstance and their cultural surroundings as surely as cells in a petri dish are rearranged by a scientist. They claim the statue of Rhodes does ‘violence’ to them. They say they are victims of ‘the colonial wound’. They argue that ‘the festering, rotting wound that is the ideology of white supremacy’ continues to do damage to ‘our black and brown bodies’.

Here, black students — intelligent, autonomous people — are reduced to mere ‘bodies’, shoved and shaped by the inanimate representations of history that surround them. One supporter of Rhodes Must Fall says it is unacceptable to have such ‘cultural detritus of empire’ on campus, as it can be ‘stifling for non-white students’, speaking to how history ‘continues to harm black and minority ethnic people living in Britain today’. The irony of a supposedly anti-racist movement treating black students effectively as bovine, as less capable than whites of negotiating public or controversial spaces, as acted upon by long-gone events, is as profound as it is dispiriting: in seeking to speak up for blacks, it actually diminishes their autonomy, their humanity.

What is most notable about Rhodes Must Fall is its treatment of history as a source of psychological trauma. Its supporters refer to the ‘invisible violence’ that is done to them — invisible because it isn’t actually happening — and talk about the ‘wound’ of history. Dr Omar Khan, director of the race think-tank the Runnymede Trust, argues that ‘seeing Rhodes so recognised [causes] a deep wound that isn’t merely in people’s heads nor in any way irrational’. That is, it literally wounds them, as a knife might.

This depiction of history as a wounding thing speaks to today’s cult of self-victimisation, the deep 21st-century urge to define oneself as a victim of circumstance rather than a shaper of destiny. Because the students who make up Rhodes Must Fall are among the most comfortable, cosseted young people in Western Europe, enjoying the extraordinary privilege of reading and thinking in one of the world’s oldest, most prestigious universities, they must trawl the past in search of victim status. Unable to find anything unpleasant in their cushioned lives, they instead plunder the suffering of earlier black generations in order to discover some hurt they might claim as their own. These are the very students most likely to complain about ‘cultural appropriation’, yet they engage in a most foul form of what we might call historical appropriation: they claim to feel the pain of the enslaved and the colonised as they sip tea in the swooning towers of Oxford. It would be like me demanding a ban on images of potatoes on the basis that they make me feel the stabbing hunger pains of my ancestors who perished in the Irish Famine.

What we’re witnessing is the rise of the transcendental victim, the victim who steals the long-passed pain of his ancestors or even of the dead with whom he has no connection whatsoever. Rhodes Must Fall isn’t alone in this. There’s now such a thing as second- and third-generation Holocaust survivors, the children and grandchildren of those who survived the Nazi death camps, who claim to experience Nazi-related ‘trauma’. Supporters of the slavery reparations movement claim it’s really hard for black people today to ‘endure this historical inhumanity’. This cynical use of history to construct a victim identity can also be seen in radical Islamism: Western Muslim youth claim to be motivated by anger over the Crusades, while al-Qaeda, ISIS and others talk endlessly about events of a thousand or more years ago. What ultimately binds the supposed leftists of Rhodes Must Fall with extremist Islamist youth is a cloying self-pity, an invented victim identity, a belief that society and history have conspired to insult them.

At a time of great misanthropy, when individuals’ capacity for autonomy is called into question and the idea of free will is ridiculed, Western society has come to value the easily harmed individual who demands therapy and recognition of his suffering over the self-motored, morally independent individual who believes that he can cut it by himself, with a little help from his friends, comrades, community. And in such a climate, those who lack victim status, who aren’t actually suffering, must hunt down insults, exaggerate slights, and build a case for their being wounded creatures equally deserving of social sympathy and state resources. We are incited to play the victim. This explains everything from the obsession with microaggressions to feminists’ obsessive logging of normal behaviour as ‘everyday sexism’ to Oxford students’ depiction of a statue as violence: it’s all an attempt to construct victimhood and thus win respect.

Strikingly, Rhodes Must Fall says it is engaged in the ‘politics of recognition’, demanding that Oxford and others ‘recognise’ the ‘effacement and violence’ historically faced by blacks. This isn’t an anti-establishment movement; on the contrary, it is a craven, knee-bent plea for the new establishment — the victim-therapeutic complex — to confer victim-legitimacy on middle-class black students who lack it. In an earlier era when the ideal of autonomy was more respected, individuals demonstrated their mettle by taking responsibility for their lives and being driven; in today’s climate of victim sacralisation, individuals are encouraged to play down their own moral resources, to disavow their own humanity, in essence.

So, yes, we can laugh at Rhodes Must Fall. We should, in fact. But to do only that would be to overlook the powerful anti-human trends infusing such a movement. As we head into 2016, let’s stop treating campus crazies who want to censor or smash things as alien creatures or ‘lefty nutters’, and recognise that in fact they speak to the diminished autonomy of our times. More importantly, let’s all refuse to play the victim game, to strip ourselves of moral independence in the hope of gaining recognition from a victim-obsessed state and society, and instead insist that we are not ‘bodies’ hurt by history, but rather are minds and hands that make history. History doesn’t simply happen to us; we happen to history.


Row over new mosque in Sydney

Australia's right-wing anti-Muslim groups have surfed in on the debate about a new mosque planned for South Hurstville, encouraging people who live outside the area to oppose the $3 million development.

Organisations in Queensland and Victoria have been posting on social media against the development dubbed the "mega mosque"  proposed for King Georges Road, south of Sydney.

And public supporters of the mosque have reported receiving "text messages of hate campaigns" from people opposed to the development.

Reclaim Australia, Stop the Mosque in Bendigo, Aussie Angels Against Sharia  and other group sites have been pushing an online petition opposing the plans. 

On another site named Stop the Mosque, which has more than 9000 followers, there are comments such as "A Mosque is a place that serves as a meeting place for people who are obligated to bring down Australian Democracy, A planning place for those committed to replace the Australian Constitution with Sharia Law, acting on instruction to implement Jihard [sic] to achieve this goal as soon as possible".

On the online petition,Say No to 849 King Georges Road, South Hurstville Mosque, is this comment  "the mosque will change our lives and our children's lives. We worked hard to live in this area and now people want to destroy this,"

Kogarah City Council has received more than 900 submissions and spokeswoman said the number is still growing. It is not yet known how many support the mosque.

The public exhibition period for comment on the plans has been extended to the end of February, but lawyers for the applicant have already taken it to the Land and Environment Court because it was not dealt with by council within the required 40 days.

The applicant for the mosque is Nasser Hussein from architectural firm Ghazi Al Ali on behalf of the company MSAR Holdings Pty Ltd, which has authority from the land owners to lodge the application.

The company lists Mohammad Safwan Abdul-Rahman as the sole director and secretary, but he could not be contacted for comment.

Trouble erupted last year when the plans were submitted for the development showing the mosque would have three levels of underground parking and two levels above ground, including two prayer rooms for a total of 78 worshippers and two classrooms to accommodate 45 people.

Worshippers have been gathering at another private home in South Hurstville for Friday prayers, but that property too has had troubled history with the council temporarily closing it in 2012 because of complaints about parking and noise.

At the time Anthony Mundine, the former footballer and world boxing champion who used the prayer room, believed the problem was prejudice, not parking.

He told Fairfax Media his mother lived next door in the big wide street where every house had off-street parking, so was "baffled" by the objections. He believed it was just an excuse to shut down the mosque.

But online community opinion is evenly split with petitions opposing and as well as in favour of the mosque attracting almost 5000 supporters each.

The "Kogarah Council: Yes to the South Hurstville Mosque"  petition on Change.org includes comments from Leila Khaled, who says she is a local resident, arguing it is important for the mosque to go ahead so local Muslim residents have the freedom to practice their religion in their own neighbourhood.

"It will reach out to youth and teach them how Islam is a religion of peace. This needs to be done before the current political radicalisation narrative negatively affects them. It will have open days to reach out and welcome the wider community. This is an opportunity to build bridges, ease concerns, and address misconceptions."

Another comment posted by from Tarik Hussein noted the double standards regarding other developments such as a church built in a residential street with no car park with no objections. He also multiple pubs clubs  in the area offering topless waitresses and attracted police attention because of fights, intoxication, drugs, and gambling – "Yet this behaviour seems to be more socially acceptable & encouraged than a place of worship for Muslims".



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


12 January, 2016

British PM promises to bulldoze Britain's sink estates and replace 'brutal high-rise towers' to end decades of neglect

Architectural determinism again:  Complete rubbish. There are big high-rise condo buildings in places like Sydney's Point Piper that are the acme of civilization.  Why?  Because the position near the harbour attracts wealthy people who pay big money for their home. 

It's not the building type that produces sink estates.  It is the behaviour of the people who live in them.  And welfare clients often behave maladaptively -- which is one reason why they are  poor.  What is needed to civilize the sink estates is not to pull them down but to kick out the element who behave badly. 

Put them somewhere where they can prey on one another and not on the decent majority

David Cameron has vowed to 'blitz' decades of poverty by bulldozing the UK's worst sink estates and high-rise towers to make way for better homes.

As part of a £140m redevelopment scheme, the Prime Minister pledged to demolish 'brutal high-rise' towers and bleak housing in an effort to tackle drug abuse and gang culture.

Making a bid for the political centre ground Tories believe has been abandoned by Jeremy Corbyn, Mr Cameron said decades of neglect of estates were behind the riots that swept Britain in 2011.

The redevelopment programme is to be overseen by Lord Heseltine, who helped to transform the Liverpool and London docks in the 1980s.

His estate regeneration advisory panel has been told to produce a full blueprint by the time of the Chancellor's Autumn Statement.

Details of the scheme will be set out in a keynote speech being delivered by the premier on Monday, in which he is also due to outline plans to double government funding for relation-ship counselling for troubled families and relaunch a coalition proposal to issue vouchers for parenting classes.

Writing in The Sunday Times, Mr Cameron said: 'Within these so-called sink estates, behind front doors, families build warm and welcoming homes.

'But step outside in the worst estates and you're confronted by concrete slabs dropped from on high, brutal high-rise towers and dark alleyways that are a gift to criminals and drug dealers.

'Decades of neglect have led to gangs and antisocial behaviour. Poverty has become entrenched, because those who could afford to move have understandably done so.'

He promised to transform the worst estates and in some areas it would mean knocking down the houses and starting again.

The Government will inject £140m to rehouse occupants and tear up planning rules to speed up the process.

Tenants and homeowners will be given 'binding guarantees' that their right to a home is protected.

Mr Cameron said three out of four rioters in 2011 came from sink estates.

'The riots of 2011 didn't emerge from within terraced streets or low-rise apartment buildings. The rioters came overwhelmingly from these postwar estates. That's not a coincidence,' he wrote.

The housing developments being targeted reportedly include the Winstanley estate in Wandsworth, south London.

Others could include the Lower Falinge estate in Rochdale, Greater Manchester and Broadwater Farm in Tottenham, north London.

Shadow housing minister John Healey said: 'Any extra to help councils build new homes is welcome but Conservative ministers have halved housing investment since 2010 and are doing too little to deal with the country's housing pressures.

'Another week, another housing announcement. If press statements built new homes the Government would have the housing crisis sorted.

'People simply won't see this small-scale scheme stretched over 100 estates making much difference to the housing problems in their area.'


Two friends

One of Britain's "Asylum seekers"

An asylum seeker and his brother-in-law have been jailed for a total of more than 14 years for their part in a £25 million internet fraud involving victims from 55 countries.

Emmanuel Adanemhen, 50, and Eduwu Obasuyi, 40, pleaded guilty at Maidstone Crown Court to their part in sophisticated fraud and money laundering scams.

A Kent Police spokesman said that Adanemhen arrived in the UK as an asylum seeker in 1998 and had assumed the identity of a deceased Portuguese man by changing his name by deed poll and on driving licences.

He used the fake identity to open bank accounts to launder funds from the fraud schemes which included dating website scams, false inheritance scams, overseas lottery wins and shipping frauds.

Police were led to Adanemhen after they arrested Obasuyi, of Friern Road, East Dulwich, London, who was detained as he was about to board a plane from London to Lagos, Nigeria.

Detectives found that the two defendants had moved more than £4 million through their various accounts which had come from victims in countries including Germany, Norway, Switzerland, New Zealand, Canada, United Arab Emirates and across the USA.

One elderly victim from Florida was conned out of 2.9 million US dollars with the total lost by victims is estimated by police to be in excess of £25 million.

Adanemhen pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud, conspiracy to enter into a money laundering agreement and three counts of fraud against the Home Office and the DVLA in respect of fake documents.

Obasuyi pleaded guilty to conspiracy to enter into a money laundering agreement. Adanemhen was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison and Obasuyi was sentenced to seven years.

A date for Proceeds Of Crime Act proceedings will now be set.

Detective Constable Paul Walker, from the Kent and Essex serious crime directorate, said: 'This was a highly sophisticated criminal enterprise with Emmanuel Adanemhen and Eduwu Obasuyi at the heart of operations.

'They were undoubtedly highly placed and trusted individuals, handling and moving millions of pounds obtained through devastating and cruel frauds played out on sometimes very elderly and vulnerable people.'


Only strong borders and pride in our civilisation can save us now

By Peter Hitchens

Every educated and intelligent person glories in the freedom of women in Western societies to exercise their talents to the full, and their freedom to walk safely in the streets of our great cities.

So what are the enlightened minds of the Left to do when news comes of revolting assaults on women in front of Cologne Cathedral, one of the jewels of European Christian culture in one of Germany's proudest cities? And how are they to react when growing evidence suggests that at least some of the culprits are newly arrived migrants from the Muslim world?

With mumbled embarrassment and nasty jibes against those who have long opposed uncontrolled mass migration, that's how.

As an illustration, I had a radio clash with the Guardian writer Gaby Hinsliff on Friday after she admitted that 'liberals like me are reluctant to talk about it'. While rightly chiding her own side, she couldn't resist dismissing opponents of mass migration as dinosaurs and their views as 'frothing rage'.

Here is the news, Ms Hinsliff. Those who for many years warned against non-selective mass immigration (and were dismissed as bigoted dinosaurs by people like her) were concerned about just this sort of problem.

If migrants from other cultures arrive too fast and in numbers too great for society to absorb and integrate them, they begin to impose those cultures on the host country. Germany is witnessing this now, and so are we.

The louder our governments shout about their dedication to fighting Islamist extremism, the readier they are to Islamise our own society. The sheer size of the Muslim population compels them to do so.

That is why exams in England are to be moved to accommodate Muslim pupils taking part in the Ramadan fast. And it is why the Mayor of Cologne, Henriette Reker, reacted to the first reports of women being molested in her city by advising them: 'It is always possible to keep a certain distance that is longer than an arm's length.'

Of course she has now been mocked so much that she has backtracked. But the point is that it was her first instinct, and what she really felt.

Radical multicultural types will in the end destroy the things they claim to like, because they don't understand that liberty and reasonable equality are features of stable, free, conservative societies based on Christian ideas, which guard their borders and are proud of their civilisation.

The people who really want to defend our enlightened society, in the end, are dinosaurs like me.


Muslims Open Fire on Popular Ten X Nightclub in Canada

Mohamed Elmi, 31, and Mohamed Salad, 29, walked to the front door of the Ten X nightclub and opened fire on the crowd inside without entering the bar.

Police said they responded to a shooting at Ten X Nightclub at the 1100 Block of 10 Avenue southwest just before 2 a.m. Sunday morning.

A 38-year-old man was shot and taken to hospital in stable condition.

Two of the club’s bouncers are being credited for saving more people from being shot, as they put their lives on the line to tackle the gunman.

Spencer Wallace considers himself lucky to be alive.  The part-time nightclub bouncer narrowly missed being shot.

“I hear a gunshot and I see a guy get shot in the chest and I watch a door explode and watch a nightclub go from perfectly calm to sheer panic in about 10 seconds,” said Wallace.

At around 1:30 a.m., three men pulled up in front of the nightclub.  Two waited in the car, while the other walked up to the front door and fired several shots inside, when one victim was shot, police said.

“One of our other staff (was) there and started to apply pressure right away to him. So for 10 seconds, he was unattended before one of our guys was on him trying to help,” said Wallace. “I watched people get glass showered over them. If I was doing a pat down at the time, I would have been in this guy’s line of fire and I could’ve been shot.”

Witnesses said the shooter was jumped by staff right away, with the loaded gun still in his hands.

“The camera footage shows other people, customers sprinting away. He tackled the guy right away. No hesitation. An average-sized guy, mid 30s, nice guy but no hesitation from him at all. He knew what he had to do and he put himself on the line to protect people that he didn’t know,” said Wallace. “So they were wrestling a guy with a cocked handgun, who had already opened fire on innocent people.”

“About five or 10 minutes later, I’m out front and the gun is laying on the sidewalk and the police officer tells me to move out of the way because the hammer is still cocked back and it could go off.”

The Calgary police gang suppression team happened to be on scene at the time. One passenger in the vehicle tried to help the shooter and got away.  The third person in the car was arrested.

Two men are facing six charges each.

As for Wallace, he’s had enough of his part-time bouncer job, but he has loads of praise for what his colleagues did.

“I am never going to put a security shirt back on. I have a day job and guns are a whole other level of violence that I’m not prepared for and I do not want to deal with,” Wallace said. “I give these two guys nothing but the utmost respect and praise. They saved lives last night, there’s no doubt in my mind.”



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


11 January, 2016

One of Americas's treasured multiculturalists in action

Mug shot

When the Boston Police drug unit officers saw Grant Headley cruising down Mount Bowdoin Terrace on Friday morning, they suspected the convicted felon was selling drugs, police said later. They pulled him over and boxed him in.

But the 27-year-old, who was wanted for violating his probation, did not go quietly. Headley allegedly leapt from his car and opened fire, wounding a nine-year veteran in the leg and sparking a shootout, then taking off on foot before being tackled on Geneva Avenue, police said.

Thirteen preschoolers were just a few hundred yards away, out for a walk with their teachers.

“This individual had a dangerous path,” Boston Police Commissioner William B. Evans said at a press conference outside Boston Medical Center, where the injured officer was in the intensive care unit. “He didn’t want to go back to jail.”

The officer, whom the Globe is not yet identifying because his mother has not been told of his injury, is expected to survive. He is a 37-year-old father of two who was less than a week away from receiving a commendation for bravery when he was shot.

Headley, whose adult criminal record dates back more than a decade and includes convictions for gun and drug charges, was released most recently from prison last April after serving five years on a host of gun charges, including being an armed career criminal in possession of a firearm without a firearm identification card.

On Friday, probation officers had a warrant for his arrest on charges related to violating his probation, though the nature of the violation was not immediately clear.

Evans said at the press conference that Headley was driving with a suspended license when drug unit officers stopped him.

Headley is in custody pending his arraignment, which is set for Monday in Dorchester Municipal Court.

Headley is being charged as an armed career criminal with a spate of charges, including assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon and being armed while in the commission of a felony. He was not injured during his arrest, police said.

Court documents list Headley as an alleged member of the Greenwood Street Posse gang, and an official said his nickname is “Young Gunna.” Relatives either could not be reached or declined to comment.

Evans called the shooting “unprovoked.” It occurred around 10:20 a.m. on Mount Bowdoin Terrace, which residents described as a mostly quiet street filled with longtime residents but one that has been troubled in recent months by drug problems and absent landlords.


Mansplaining: an affront to universalism

What exactly are feminists talking about when they use the term ‘mansplaining’? Is it whenever a man offers his opinion to a woman? If so, how is that any different to the sexism the phrase ‘mansplaining’ purportedly protests? Is this not just sexism aimed at men?

That certainly seemed to be the case when the makers of the deeply inoffensive BBC drama Sherlock were chastised over the show’s New Year’s Day special. Apparently, it didn’t show proper deference to the Suffragettes, as the prodigious sleuth was heavily criticised on social media for supposedly ‘mansplaining’ feminism.

The episode, titled ‘The Abominable Bride’, returned Sherlock and Watson to the Victorian era, where they investigated a secretive group of women, who, it was implied, were Suffragettes responsible for a series of murders of married men. After solving the case and uncovering the mysterious female cabal as the culprits, Sherlock gave a speech, which was entirely supportive of the Suffragette movement:

‘One half of the human race [is] at war with the other. The invisible army hovering at our elbow, tending to our home, raising our children, ignored, patronised, disregarded, not allowed to so much as vote. But an army nonetheless ready to rise up in the best of causes, to put right an injustice as old as humanity itself. So you see, Watson, this is a war we must lose.’

These well-meaning comments, however, were not kindly received by disapproving feminists on Twitter, who accused Benedict Cumberbatch’s character of ‘mansplaining’.

Unfortunately, these individuals seem to struggle with discerning the difference between actual misogyny and a man – in this case a fictional one – simply voicing his thoughts. Mansplaining is a divisive concept that pathologises the male psyche, as if men are uniquely capable of patronising, sexist behaviour. And it is an inherently self-contradictory phrase, which attempts to identify sexism while also reinforcing it.

I have certainly encountered men who treat women as lesser intellects. Yet I also know plenty of men who would never dream of doing that. It is pretty obvious that supercilious men don’t behave that way because they are male. They do it because of their ignorant and unpleasant personalities. Such lordly behaviour is certainly not limited to men or misogynists, for that matter.

I have, however, met my fair share of condescending ‘femsplainers’: feminists who cannot countenance the possibility that someone can both be female and not a feminist. Such people have tried to forcibly convert me to their political ideology by insisting that I am a feminist – despite my claims to the contrary. Usually they will argue that if you believe in equality between the sexes you are therefore a feminist, as if one cannot reach that point by any other path.

For these femsplainers, feminism is the default option for women, and if you opt out then you are either stupid, mistaken or self-loathing. This is where the ugly politics of identity leads you, into a world of mistrust and intolerance of anyone who does not fit the required stereotype. A man isn’t even allowed to comment on anything related to the history of women because it isn’t his history.

This is where I have my own bone to pick with Sherlock. I completely disagree with the sleuth’s assertion that in the campaign for women’s suffrage ‘one half of the human race [was] at war with the other’. Actually, there were many men who advocated votes for women. The philosopher John Stuart Mill being one notable example. There were also women who campaigned against the Suffragettes. But, most importantly, the right to vote was something that working-class men were fighting for, too. Prior to 1918, they didn’t have the vote either. It was not so much a gender conflict as it was a class conflict.

The campaign for suffrage doesn’t belong to the Suffragettes alone, and it is not just ‘women’s history’. It was a triumph of universalism – a common history that we all share.


Rhodes statue is protected by planning laws - so Oxford college can't take it down even if it wants to bow to pressure from anti-colonial protesters

The statue of colonist Cecil Rhodes is protected by strict planning laws and the property's Grade II* listed status means the Oxford college would struggle to remove it.

Oriel college sparked a national debate last month when it announced it would remove a plaque dedicated to Rhodes, in response to a student anti-racism campaign.

The anti-Rhodes lobby claimed the 19th century mining magnate, who helped Victorian Britain colonise much of Southern Africa, held opinions that now offend modern values.

Rhodes was one of the era' most famous imperialists, with Rhodesia - now Zimbabwe and Zambia - named after him. 

Oriel will start a six-month 'listening exercise' after the campaign group said forcing ethnic minority students to walk past the 4in memorial amounted to 'violence' as Rhodes paved the way for apartheid.

Even if it bowed to pressure from the student protesters, attempts to remove the statue will be blocked by planning regulations, according to heritage experts.

Legal requirements say decisions 'must have special regard to the desirability of preserving the building' including 'features of special architectural or historic interest which it possesses', The Times reported. 

Julian Munby, of Oxford Archaeology, said the statue was an essential part of the design of the building.

He said: 'I don't see why Historic England would agree to it.' Although Historic England does not have the final say, it would be consulted and its advice would not be taken lightly.

Chris Smith, director of planning at Historic England, added: 'The stories of human suffering and triumph that are embodied in historic places should be spoken about, understood and debated as an essential aspect of our national culture.

'The building is among the top seven per cent of buildings which are afforded special protection.'

If the removal were rejected by the city council, the college may have to appeal to the secretary of state, which could rack up a six-figure legal bill.

The campaign to remove the unobtrusive statue on Oxford's High Street - which has been there since 1911 - followed the Rhodes Must Fall student protest in South Africa.

A statue of Rhodes was removed at the University of Cape Town after it was attacked as a symbol of oppression.

The student group is led by Ntokozo Qwabe, whose education was funded by the scholarship set up by Rhodes, which led some to accuse him of hypocrisy. Rhodes Scholarships finance an Oxford education for students from former British colonies. 

Mr Qwabe has also faced criticism for saying French flags should be taken down as they are a 'violent symbol' akin to the Nazi swastika and writing how he 'did not stand with Paris' in the wake of the terror attacks last November. 

Oriel has been heavily criticised by the likes of Tony Abbott, a former Rhodes beneficiary, Mary Beard, Jacob Rees-Mogg MP and Trevor Phillips for trying to 'destroy history'.

Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan, an Oriel graduate, said he would cancel his monthly direct debit to the college if it continued to act in such a 'cowardly way'. 


Pharmacists Ask U.S. Supreme Court to Protect Their Conscience Rights

A family-owned pharmacy and two individual pharmacists petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday to stop a state law that compels pharmacies and individual pharmacists in Washington State to provide abortion-inducing drugs despite conscience objections.

The 2007 Washington law requires pharmacists to dispense all drugs approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in a “timely manner consistent with reasonable expectations,” with no exceptions for conscience-based referrals for abortion inducing drugs.

Washington is the only state that currently makes conscience-based referrals illegal.

The petition to the Supreme Court comes after a long battle with Washington over this law which, according to the Becket Fund, “was passed in a cloud of controversy, with then-Governor Christine Gregoire threatening to terminate the State Pharmacy Commission and replacing commission members with new ones recommended by abortion-rights activists.”

The Stormans family owns Ralph’s Thriftway, a grocery store that includes a small pharmacy. The family, in keeping with their Christian beliefs, “cannot stock or dispense the morning-after or week-after pills (collectively, “Plan B”),” according to the petition, “For Petitioners, dispensing these drugs would make them guilty of destroying human life.”

The petition points out that, “Within five miles of Ralph’s, over thirty pharmacies carry Plan B. Plan B is also available from nearby doctors’ offices, government health centers, emergency rooms, Planned Parenthood, a toll-free hotline, and the Internet. As of 2013, the morning-after pill is also available on grocery and drug-store shelves without a prescription.”

The petitioners are Stormans, Inc., doing business as Ralph's Thriftway, Rhonda Mesler, and Margo Thelen.

Margo Thelen and Rhonda Mesler are individual pharmacists with similar objections to dispensing abortion-inducing drugs. They have worked in the pharmacy profession for a combined 70 years. When a customer requests an abortion-inducing drug, they refer the customer to one of over 30 pharmacies within five miles that willingly sell the drugs.

Margo Thelen lost her job because of the law and Rhonda Mesler reportedly was threatened with losing hers, stated the Becket Fund.

The petitioners sued initially in July 2007 to prevent implementation of the law and, following a five-year litigation process, a federal judge struck down the law in February 2012, ruling that the regulation violated First Amendment rights.

“The Board’s regulations have been aimed at Plan B and conscientious objections from their inception,” the court explained. “Indeed, Plaintiffs have presented reams of [internal government documents] demonstrating that the predominant purpose of the rule was to stamp out the right to refuse [for religious reasons].”

However, the Ninth Circuit of Appeals reversed that decision last July being “unconvinced that the right to own, operate, or work at a licensed professional business free from regulations requiring the business to engage in activities that one sincerely believes leads to the taking of human life is ‘so rooted in the traditions and conscience of our people as to be ranked as fundamental.’”

The Becket Fund, along with the Alliance Defending Freedom, jointly filed a writ of certiorari on Monday on behalf of the Stormans, as well as for Rhonda Mesler and Margo Thelen.

“No one should be forced out of her profession solely because of her religious beliefs,” said? Luke Goodrich, deputy general counsel of the Becket Fund. “We are optimistic that the Supreme Court will step in and strike down this blatant discrimination against people of faith.”



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


10 January, 2016

Are reluctant men to blame for so many women being childless? Record numbers are never becoming mothers - and not by choice

Not mentioned below is a major reason why men "won't commit":  Because Britain's feminist-inspired divorce laws make marriage a huge financial risk.  Feminists are the enemies of normal women.

But a second reason for women remaining childless IS mentioned below:  unrealistic expectations of men.  And where do many of those unrealistic expectations of men come from"  Again very often from feminist preaching in the schools and elsewhere.  Men are just normal flawed human beings, not the oddball semi-women that feminists demand.  Most women CANNOT "have it all".  The very idea that you don't need to make compromises in human relationships is amazingly childish and contrary to all human experience

A kind, funny, handsome husband. A dream wedding in the little Norman church under the South Downs where she'd been raised. And then they would settle down in a ramshackle Georgian rectory in the countryside and have the beautiful babies she'd always dreamed of. She'd have at least two - hopefully more.

This was Melanie Whitehouse's dream as she grew up. To her, it was simply unimaginable that she wouldn't one day become a mother.

So why has Melanie, now a 57-year-old author, found herself among the ranks of women in what has been dubbed Generation Childless?

Genevieve Smyth, a 45-year-old occupational therapist from South London, was brought up on the mantra of equality - but she struggled to find a man who fulfilled all her requirements and found herself childless

But the cost has been high. Indeed, the latest statistics show that women in their mid-40s are almost twice as likely to be childless as their parents' generation. One in five women born in 1969 are childless today, compared to one in nine women born in 1942.

And it's not medical infertility that's fuelling the rise of childlessness among these women.

Instead, they are childless by circumstance. Whether it's down to not meeting the right man, or finding that careers absorbed all their time in their childbearing years, or simply deciding that babies wouldn't complement their comfortable lifestyle, women are increasingly starting the menopause without having had a family.

Sadly, it seems that the majority of these childless women desperately wanted a family. Jody Day, founder of Gateway Women, a support network for childless women, says that her research shows 10 per cent of such women are childless due to infertility and 10 per cent have chosen to be child-free. But that leaves some 80 per cent of women without children who have simply ended up in this situation.

Melanie Whitehouse is certainly one of these women. And she is clear about the cause of her childlessness: men.

Or rather, the lack of men who were willing to settle down and start a family with her. The heartbreaking realisation that she was never going to have a baby struck late - in her 50s, while at a reunion lunch with her first boyfriend, whom she had dumped on a whim.

'I hadn't grieved for the children who might have been until then. I realised with painful clarity what I'd lost,' she says. 'Tom had been happily married for 25 years and had three kids, while I had nobody.'

These feelings of grief are common among women who find themselves unwillingly childless.

Melanie Whitehouse's journey has been a painful one, characterised by a certain kind of man, she confesses.

'The men I met from my mid-20s onwards seemed to delight in wooing and dumping me. I suppose if I'd been born in another era, men would have had to commit to marriage before they had sex, which might have meant I'd have got the children I yearned for.'

The next big relationship didn't bring the family she yearned for, either. 'In 1990, at 33, I really thought I'd found someone. I could see us having a family, but it was all over in four months. And the ticking of my body clock was getting louder and louder.'

So are women like Melanie merely unlucky - or all too reflective of a generation desperately trying to convince unwilling men to have a child?

The latter, it seems. And that's because, as ever, men have the benefit of time on their side. Their reluctance to tie themselves down has become even more pronounced today, as they don't have to rush into marriage, a long-term relationship, or even the vaguest of friendships to have sex with women.


The Most Whiney, Thin-Skinned, Easily Offended Society In The History Of The World

Sorry, but it’s your fault if you’re offended all the time

by Matt Walsh

I truly believe that we are the most whiney, sensitive, thin-skinned, easily offended society in the history of the world.

Nobody has ever been as prolific at getting offended as we are.  Nobody cries over insignificant nonsense as loudly and consistently as us.

It’s the one thing we seem to do better than everyone else on the planet. We corner the Offended Market, and it’s not even close. Modern Americans love to get offended more than we love eating Cinnabon or talking about our fitness goals. If it was an Olympic sport, we’d grab the gold, silver, and bronze every year. If it was a job, we’d all be millionaires. In fact, we have turned it into a job, and the people who do it professionally are millionaires (Al Sharpton, etc). It is our calling card, our national pastime. It is the battle we fight and the banner we wave.

We get offended faster and more efficiently than anyone. And it’s not just our speed that separates us from the rest — it’s our endurance. We have a limitless capacity for offendedness. Every week there are dozens of new national outrages and boycott campaigns and social media crusades to raise awareness about some offensive thing, or to get someone fired for saying some offensive thing, or to teach people that some previously non-offensive thing has now become offensive.

Most of all, I find myself positively dazzled by the dexterity and athleticism with which we get offended. We can juggle six or seven outrages all at once, and then drop them and pick up new ones in the blink of an eye.

Our creativity and meticulousness are also quite notable here. We can look at any situation and extract hundreds of offensive factors that an untrained eye probably would have overlooked. We conjure up more fabricated outrages and controversies in a month than past civilizations could have mustered in a thousand years.

Do you remember what everyone was super worked up about four weeks ago? Yeah, me neither. That’s the point. We move on to the new outrage so quickly and the old ones are buried and forgotten. Well, whatever it was way back then, I’m sure it was REALLY bad and we were REALLY upset.

It’s always something. We have located the Fountain of Eternal Indignation, and we drink it by the gallon.

So then it is no wonder that this is the climate which has given rise to a concept called microaggressions.


Children conceived through IVF are at 'no greater risk of developmental delays or lifelong disability'

Infertility treatments do not contribute to developmental delays in children, scientists revealed.

There is no heightened risk of developmental delays by the age of seven in children conceived through IVF or other infertility treatments, a new study found.

As a result, scientists concluded that children conceived via IVF are no more likely to have developmental delays than children conceived naturally.

This finding alleviates longstanding concerns that infertility treatments may affect an embryo at a sensitive stage and could result in lifelong disability.

Scientists from the National Institute of Health examined developmental assessment scores of more than 1,800 children born to women who became pregnant after infertility treatment.

They compared the results to those of more than 4,000 children born to women who didn’t undergo the treatment.

There were no differences in development assessments in the two groups, according to Dr Edwina Yeung, an investigator at NIH’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

Dr Yeung said: ‘When we began our study, there was little research on the potential effects of conception via fertility treatments on US children.

‘Our results provide reassurance to the thousands of couples who have relied on these treatments to establish their families.'

The Upstate KIDS study enrolled babies born to women in New York state between 2008 and 2010.

Parents of infants whose birth certificates indicated infertility treatment were invited to enroll their children in the study, as were all parents of twins and other multiples.

The researchers also recruited roughly three times as many parents with a baby that was not conceived through infertility treatment.

Four months after giving birth, the mothers indicated on a questionnaire the type of infertility treatment they received.

Those treatments included including in vitro fertilisation (IVF); frozen embryo transfer; assisted hatching; gamete intrafallopian transfer; zygote intrafallopian transfer; ovulation induction, and intrauterine insemination.

Participants also completed a questionnaire that screened children for developmental disabilities at numerous intervals throughout their child’s first three years of life.

The questionnaire covered five domains: fine motor skills, gross motor skills, communication, personal and social functioning, and problem solving ability.

Researchers found that children conceived through infertility treatments scored similarly to other children in the developmental assessments.

They then considered only children conceived through fertility treatment.

The scientists found that those children were at increased risk for failing any one of the five domains in the assessment exam, with the greatest likelihood of failing the personal-social and problem solving domains.

But, they found that twins were more likely to fail a domain than were single born children.

As a result, when the researchers compensated for the greater percentage of twins in the fertility treatment group than in the non-treatment group – 44 per cent compared to 19 per cent – they found no significant difference between them in failing any of the five domains.

Furthermore, of the children diagnosed with a disability at three or four years old, the researchers saw no significant difference between the treatment and non-treatment groups.

Thirteen per cent of the treatment group had disabilities, compared to 18 per cent of the non-treatment group.

Dr Yeung said that because it is not always possible to diagnose some forms of developmental disability by three years of age, the research team will continue to evaluate the children periodically until they reach eight years of age.

The study was published in JAMA Pediatrics.


Migrant rape fears spread across Europe: Women told not to go out at night alone after assaults carried out in Sweden, Finland, Germany, Austria and Switzerland amid warnings gangs are co-ordinating attacks

Security authorities are growing increasingly concerned by the rising number of sex attacks by gangs of migrants which appear to be spreading across Europe.

Finland and Sweden today became the latest European countries to issue warnings to women to be wary of the threat of sex attacks following fresh reports of sexual assaults in the last week, while the Viennese police chief adviced women not to go outside alone in Vienna.

The warnings come as reports emerged that Austrian and German police tried to cover-up the issue over fears of reprisal attacks on asylum seekers and damage to the countries' tourist trade.

Dozens of arrests have been made today in connection with the wave of recent sex attacks across Europe.

Finnish police said today that they had been tipped off about plans by groups of asylum seekers to sexually harass women following an unusually high level of sexual harassment cases in Helsinki.

'There hasn't been this kind of harassment on previous New Year's Eves or other occasions for that matter... This is a completely new phenomenon in Helsinki,' said deputy police chief Ilkka Koskimaki.

Police in Germany are investigating more than 150 cases across five German cities where women have been attacked by the 'organised Arab or North African gangs, police said.

Cologne has been at the centre of the problem with around 106 reported cases of assault by migrant gangs since New Year's Eve.

Following criticism of the police's handling of the violent clashes in Cologne, the police chief of Cologne has been relieved of his duties today.

Police chief Wolfgang Albers, 60, was informed by the state interior minister Ralf Jaeger that he would be given early retirement, a source told Reuters

A chilling police report about the attacks in Cologne describes women being forced to run through a 'gauntlet' of drunken men while officers themselves were mobbed by victims claiming they had been sexually assaulted.

Two more victims from the night have spoken out today on German TV, after they were sexually assaulted and attacked with fireworks during the city's New Year's Eve celebrations.

One woman, known only as Jenny, suffered serious burns when a firework was shoved into the hood she was wearing.

'I heard a sizzling sound in my hood,' said Jenny. 'I somehow tried to get the firecracker out of the hood. Then it fell into my jacket and burned everything.'

She added: 'The scars will be permanent. I was lucky that it didn't explode.'

One German gun-shop owner Katja Triebel revealed that sales in pepper spray had shot up since the vile attacks in Cologne.

Concerns remain that many of the men involved in the sickening assaults are still at large despite the best efforts by the police.

Further cases have emerged of identical sex attacks being reported in neighbouring Austria as well as Switzerland, where six women reported identical crimes in Zurich on New Year's Eve.

Swedish police say at least 15 young women have reported being groped by groups of men on New Year's Eve in the city of Kalmar. 

Kalmar police spokesman Johan Bruun said today that groups of men encircled women on a crowded square and groped them on New Year's Eve.

He said no one was physically injured but that many of those targeted were terrified.

He said two men, both asylum-seekers, were informed through interpreters that they're suspected of sexual assault and that police are trying to identify other suspects.

When asked about similarities to the assaults in Germany, Bruun said: 'We are aware of what happened in Germany but we are focusing our investigation on what happened in Kalmar.'

Bruun told MailOnline that that the gang 'formed a rings around the girls and started molesting them.'

'They grabbed their breasts and genitals. In some cases they tried to drag girls into a waiting car, but those girls escaped luckily,' he revealed.

Groups of women were targeted as well as women who were on their own at the celebrations.

He also revealed that 11 incidents have been reported including claims from women who said they were molested inside nightclubs on the night.

'This is something entirely new to us and has never happened before.

'There were several groups of men that conducted these crimes and we are working very hard to find them. This is a serious crime and it is important for the citizens in Kalmar to feel safe on the streets,' he said.

He confirmed that two men were arrested at the scene of the crime on New Years eve after they were pointed out by several women.

'The sexual molestation continued after we arrested them and we know that there are many more perpetrators that we have yet to identify since they worked in big groups.

'We have collected pictures and films from peoples mobile phones at the scene and will show pictures of the suspects to the victims.'

He revealed the arrested men did not speak English or Swedish and were carrying the identity cards that said that they were asylum seekers.

Cologne police said they have received a total of 170 criminal complaints related to New Year, including 120 of a sexual nature. In addition to the 31 suspects detained by federal officers, city police arrested two men from North Africa, aged 16 and 23.

Austrian police have been accused of covering up the sex attacks by migrant gangs in Vienna.

Police have dismissed the claims, insisting they had held the information back 'to protect the privacy of victims'.

News of the victims in Austria, which has included several arrests of migrants from Afghanistan and Syria, was revealed after women and girls said they suffered attacks from migrants and came forward to complain to local media.

One identified as Sabrina told Austrian newspaper Osterreich that she was still suffering from shock from her ordeal which happened when she was in a club in the centre of the Mozart city of Salzburg.

In Finland, security guards hired to patrol the city on New Year's Eve told police there had been 'widespread sexual harassment' at a central square where around 20,000 people had gathered for celebrations.

Three sexual assaults allegedly took place at Helsinki's central railway station on New Year's Eve, where around 1,000 mostly Iraqi asylum seekers had converged.

'Police have... received information about three cases of sexual assault, of which two have been filed as complaints,' Helsinki police said in a statement.

'The suspects were asylum seekers. The three were caught and taken into custody on the spot,' Helsinki deputy police chief Ilkka Koskimaki told AFP.

Police said they had increased their preparedness 'to an exceptional level' in Helsinki for New Year's Eve after being tipped off about possible problems.

The suspects arrested from the Cologne sex attacks reportedly included 9 Algerians, 8 Moroccans, 4 Syrians, 5 Iranians, 2 Germans and one each from Iraq, Serbia and the USA.

'Ahead of New Year's Eve, the police caught wind of information that asylum seekers in the capital region possibly had similar plans to what the men gathered in Cologne's railway station have been reported to have had,' police said in a statement.

Dozens of apparently coordinated sexual assaults against women took place on New Year's Eve in the western German city of Cologne.

Cologne police said they had received 120 criminal complaints and quoted witnesses as saying that groups of 20-30 young men 'who appeared to be of Arab origin' had surrounded victims, assaulted them and in several cases robbed them.

Despite the growing number of copy-cat attacks by migrants gangs, Helsinki's deputy police chief said he did not think police believed there is a link between the Cologne and Helsinki incidents.

Shortly before New Year's Eve, Finnish police also arrested six Iraqis at an asylum residency centre in Kirkkonummi, around 30 kilometres west of Helsinki, suspected of 'publicly inciting criminal behaviour'. They were released on January 2.

According to Koskimaki, the arrests were linked to the information police received in the run-up to New Year's Eve.

In November, Finnish authorities said around 10 asylum seekers were suspected of rapes, among the more than 1,000 rapes reported to police in 2015.

Vienna's police chief has has caused outrage by advising women in the wake of sex attacks over New Year not to go out on the streets alone in Austria.

The astonishing claims by Gerhard Purstl were made as it was revealed Austria also had cases registered in which women claimed to have been sexually assaulted by men who were described by their victims as being immigrants.

In neighbouring Germany, more than 100 women have come forward to say they were assaulted over New Year by groups of men who were described in police protocols as being mostly nely-arrived asylum seekers.

In the wake of the scandal, Purstl was asked about the incidents and about the risk that women were in.

He then said: 'Women should in general not go out on the streets at night alone, they should avoid suspicious looking areas and also when in pubs and clubs should only accept drinks from people they know.'

The statement immediately attracted criticism from the country's Green party women's affairs spokesman Berivan Aslan who said: 'Should women now only go out with bodyguards if they want to avoid being told it was their fault when they get into difficulties?'

And the Green party security spokesman Peter Pilz said: 'Is the Vienna police chief saying that he is no longer in a position to protect women from sex attacks? If so, then he has failed in his job.'

Thousands have pledged their support to a German vigilante group which has vowed to protect women from migrants in the wake of the New Year's Eve attacks in Cologne.

The group says it wants to make the streets safer through 'presence' alone but police have warned that 'searching for offenders is not a job for citizens'.

After the group was launched, and gained thousands of followers overnight, a Dusseldorf police spokesman told local media that German police is responsible for public security.

He said the police had no problem with people acting bravely in the face of crime but they were against 'self proclaimed vigilantes'.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


8 January, 2016

Having a big family makes your children either badly behaved or low achievers at school, study claims

The academic article underlying the popular report below is "The Quantity-Quality Trade-off and the Formation of Cognitive and Non-cognitive Skills". In my usual pesky way, I have had a look at it

I don't have the time to look in great detail at this quite  complex study so I will content myself with a couple of basic observations.  For a start, the finding is unusual.  Other studies have found no effect of family size.

The problem, if there is one, appears to be an artifact of social class, though the authors are not allowed to mention that naughty word, of course.  The effect seems mostly found among the poor, who are also less bright and who are also more likely to have big families.

And here's the tricky bit: Mention of poverty in America immediately calls to mind the naughtiest word of all: race.  Did  the authors control for race?  Would the effect drop to insignificance if you looked at whites only?  The Abstract of their current paper does not mention that word. But here's the kicker.  There is also online what appears to be a preprint of the paper.  And that DOES mention the word.  And they DID find that race had a big effect.  The effect of family size was primarily seen among persons of sub-Saharan African ancestry ("blacks" in non-academic language).

And the effects overall were not large.  The word "IQ" is another word that may not be mentioned in polite circles.  It is too easily understood.  But their statistics can be translated into IQ.  And the result is that we are looking at only about an IQ change of 1.5 IQ points.  So the whole thing hardly matters anyway.

The takeaway is that in most families parents can have as many children as they like without concern about dumbing their kids down

Finally: I don't like to do this but I feel that I must place this study in the context of the current uproar in psychology about the high rate of unreplicable results and the associated topic of research ethics. It is now clear that many scientists do not tell the full truth about their research results -- for various reasons. 

In that context, any concealment of findings calls into question the integrity of the research and the integrity of its authors.  And since scientific communication depends heavily on trust, any attempt at concealment of findings -- as we see in the published abstract of this study -- strongly suggests that the work was not honestly reported and should therefore be disregarded.  I am not being cynical in saying that the abstract IS the article for most readers of  academic journal articles.  Only specialists in that field plough through the whole thing

In the circumstances it is open for one to conclude that the real findings concerned blacks only but that was too unpalatable ("politically incorrect") to publish.  So that problem was "worked around" in one or more ways

A new study has found that for every additional child born, the others are more likely to suffer poor cognitive abilities and behavioural problems afterwards.

Boys were more likely to misbehave while girls saw their performance in maths and reading skills dip.

Using data from 1986 to 2012 taken by the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY) and by the Children and Young Adult Survey, three economists analysed how older siblings performed before and after a younger sibling was born.

They looked at the number and timing of births into a family and matched these to various mental and behavioural traits.

Levels of parental engagement were also crucial - with factors like how often families eat meals together, one-on-one time with each child, affection and the safety of the home also affecting how a child performed.

As families got bigger, the time spent with each child reduced, which has been linked to worse outcomes for children, they found.

'Our fixed effect estimates indicate that the arrival of a younger sibling reduces measures of parental investment as well as cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes of older children by approximately one-tenth of a standard deviation,' the research paper said.

The study was conducted by economists Chinhui Juhn, Yona Rubinstein, and C. Andrew Zuppann, who questioned whether the 'quantity' of children would effect the 'quality' of their upbringing. 

It discovered that parental investment in older kids fell by 3 percentile points after a young child is born, while cognitive scores fell by 2.8 percentile points and behavioural problems increased.

'We have documented a significant trade-off between quantity and quality of children for NLSY mothers and their children. 'On average, children in larger families have lowered parental investment and worse cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes. '

Other factors found to influence the outcomes was the mother's intelligence and economic well-being.

Mothers were asked to take the Armed Force Qualification Test (AFQT), used by the military to assess skills including reading and reasoning.

Those who scored badly saw a larger drop in cognitive scores when they had their second child.


Air Force Athletes Can Pray Before Game

After the Military Religious Freedom Foundation sparked a review when it challenged the right for football players on the Air Force Academy’s football team to publically pray before games, the Academy found that yes, the cadets do have the right to drop to one knee and pray.

In a statement just before Christmas, Academy officials said, “The United States Air Force Academy will continue to reaffirm to cadets that all Airmen are free to practice the religion of their choice or subscribe to no religious belief at all. The players may confidently practice their own beliefs without pressure to participate in the practices of others.”

At the beginning of December, the foundation whose goal is to strip expressions of Christianity it deems too politically powerful from the U.S. military, complained about some of the player’s pre-game ritual. This is an admirable move, coming from the organization that a few years ago tried to alter the Air Force Academy Officer Oaths to strip the mention of God from them.

But what is discouraging is that the academy has to consider the question on whether or not a group of football players have the right to express their faith just because they wear a second uniform.


Yemeni Cleric: Jews Are 'Most Despicable, Base, Vile, and Wretched ... The Brothers of Apes and Pigs'

Although rarely reported by the U.S. media, the sermons and pronouncements by many Muslim clerics are grossly anti-Semitic. A typical example is Yemeni cleric Sheikh Ahmad Bin Anis, who recently preached that the nation of Islam is ruled by its “enemies,” the “Jews,” who are the “most despicable, base, vile, and wretched of all the creatures,” and are “the brothers of apes and pigs.”

In a recent sermon posted on the Internet and translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI),  Sheikh Ahmad Bin Anis declares, "Oh Muslims, oh servants of Allah, the nation of Islam ruled the world for a long time. This nation ruled the land in accordance with the shari'a.”

“The Islamic nation is invincible,” he says.  “In the days of yore, its slogan was: 'Convert to Islam, and you will be safe. Allah will reward you twice. Otherwise, pay the jizya poll tax in humiliation. Or else the sword will come down on the heads of those who resist this.'”

"Today, however, our enemies have joined forces against our nation,” says Sheikh Ahmad Bin Anis.  “The Islamic nation is held hostage by the absolutely most despicable and base nation on the face of the Earth. The nation of Islam has become subordinate to others, while in the past, others were subordinate to it. The nation is ruled by others, while in the past, others were ruled by it.”

“The nation of Islam has been taken over by its enemies,” he says.  “It has been taken over by the Jews – the most despicable, base, vile, and wretched of all the creatures of Allah.”

“Our nation has been taken over by the brothers of apes and pigs,” states the Muslim cleric.

"For those who are not familiar with the history of the Jews – they are the enemies of Allah, of His messengers, and of His prophets,” says the sheikh.  “The Jews are the enemies of the holy books and the enemies of mankind. The Jews never honor agreements, treaties, or covenants of protection.”

“They are the enemies of humanity, the enemies of mankind,” says Sheikh Ahmad Bin Anis.   “The Jews are the enemies of peace!"


Black crime is a  Tax on the Poor

By Walter E. Williams

A few years ago, BET had a commentary titled "Where Are the Grocery Stores in Black Neighborhoods?" One wonders whether anyone thinks that the absence of supermarkets in predominantly black neighborhoods means that white merchants do not like dollars coming out of black hands. Racial discrimination cannot explain the absence of supermarkets in black communities.

Compare the operation of a supermarket in a low-crime neighborhood with that of one in a high-crime neighborhood. You will see differences in how they operate. Supermarkets in low-crime neighborhoods often have merchandise on display near entrances. They may have merchandise left unattended outside the store, such as plants and gardening material. Often these items are left out overnight. Supermarket managers' profit maximizing objective is to maximize merchandise turnover per square foot of leased space. The economic significance of being able to have merchandise located at entrances and outside is the supermarket manager can use all of the space he leases.

Supermarket operation differs in high-crime neighborhoods. Merchandise will not be left unattended outside the store — and surely not overnight. Because of greater theft, the manager will not have products near entrances and exits. As a result, the manager cannot use all of the space that he leases. On top of this, it is not unusual to see a guard employed by the store.

Because supermarkets operate on a very lean profit margin, typically less than 2 percent, crime makes such a business unprofitable. The larger crime cost is borne by black residents, who must pay higher prices, receive inferior-quality goods at small mom and pop stores and/or bear the transportation cost of having to shop at suburban malls. Crime works as a tax on people who can least afford it.

Racial discrimination suits have been brought against pizza companies whose drivers either refuse to deliver pizzas to certain neighborhoods or require customers to come down to their car. In many instances, the pizza deliverymen are black people who are reluctant to deliver pizzas even in their own neighborhoods. For a law-abiding person, not to have deliveries on the same terms as everyone else is insulting, but who is to blame?

It is not just pizzas. Recently, Comcast notified a cable customer on the South Side of Chicago the company would not send out a technician because of the violent crime in the area. Delivery companies do not leave packages in high-crime neighborhoods when the customer is not home. The company must bear the costs of making return trips, or more likely, the customer has to bear the cost of going to pick up the package. Taxi drivers, as well as Uber and Lyft drivers, are reluctant to provide services to high-crime neighborhoods.

Crime and lack of respect for property rights impose another unappreciated cost. They lower the value of everything in the neighborhood. A house that is not even worth $50,000 might be worth many multiples of that after gentrification. Gentrification is a trend in some urban neighborhoods whereby higher-income people buy up property in poor repair and fix it up. This results in the displacement of lower-income families and small businesses. Before we call gentrification an exclusively racial phenomenon, many gentrifiers are black middle-class, educated people.

It is by no means flattering to law-abiding black people that "black" has become synonymous with "crime." Crime not only imposes high costs on blacks but also sours race relations. Whites are apprehensive of blacks, and blacks are offended by being subjects of that apprehension. That apprehension and offense are exhibited in many insulting ways to law-abiding blacks — for example, jewelers keeping their displays locked and store clerks giving extra surveillance to black shoppers.

White people and police officers cannot fix this or other problems of the black community. If blacks do not fix them, they will not be fixed, at least in a pleasing way.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


7 January, 2016

Creepy multicultural doctor in Britain

A doctor stunned an NHS manageress by asking her if her nail polish matched the colour of her underwear before pestering other female hospital colleagues for a date, it was claimed today.

Tipo Qureshi, 44, is said to have behaved inappropriately towards five separate female members of staff in less than three months at Sandwell General Hospital in West Bromwich, Midlands.

Quershi, a locum specialist registrar in plastic surgery, began his flirtatious behaviour during his induction meeting at the hospital, a medical tribunal heard.

This is when he made his nail polish remark while discussing a work timetable with a female employee known as Miss A, who manages NHS waiting lists.

She said she was 'surprised by how forward he was' and attempted to ignore his comment.

But Qureshi, who denies the allegations, began to pester her for her personal mobile number when he took up a full-time post at the hospital, it was said.

When he asked her out on a date, she informed him she had a boyfriend but he replied: 'How would your boyfriend feel if we went for a coffee?' it is alleged.

Qureshi, of Warwick, would view dating websites on his mobile phone whilst on a ward with patients and told a nurse it was a shame she was engaged because he 'had a lot of money', the court heard.

He told the same woman that she reminded him of an ex-girlfriend with whom he had had a 'very physical relationship', it was said.

When she asked what he meant, the medic allegedly 'raised his eyebrows' and gave her a 'knowing look'.

Qureshi also told a nurse known as Ms C that he was viewing a dating website on his mobile phone while on a hospital ward in 2013, the tribunal heard.

He then showed her a picture of a teenage girl in a bikini on the screen and said she had a ‘good pair of legs’, it is alleged. Ms C later complained that he asked her out on a date.

The surgeon is also said to have told a student nurse that she was too pretty to be a nurse and should be a model, before asking if she ‘minded dating older men'.

Qureshi was reported to the General Medical Council when two nurses complained of indecent assaults allegedly committed on the same day.

Both had separately been in an operating theatre with the medic on December 6, 2013 when he is said to have leant across them for paperwork or medical equipment and deliberately touched their breasts.

On the second occasion, towards a nurse known as Miss F, Dr Qureshi allegedly ‘fumbled’ around her breasts while attempting to catch a vial of anaesthetic.

Both women say he failed to apologise after each incident, which ‘would have been consistent with the possibility of accidental touching’.

Miss F overheard the first woman, known as Ms E, talking about her experience when they bumped into each other in the hospital staffroom.

She in turn revealed her alleged ordeal, which was heard by a department practitioner who suggested they report the incidents. The matter was then passed to the GMC.

The surgeon is also accused of swerving clinical duties - on one occasion refusing to cannulate a patient because a less senior member of staff could do it, and on another refusing to take a surgical case because he was close to finishing his shift.

When questioned by a nurse, he allegedly said: ‘Patients don’t care about me, why should I care about them?' loud enough for patients and other members of staff to hear.

Recalling the nail polish comment, Miss A told the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service in Manchester: 'I was quite taken aback that in our initial meeting, during an induction with a professional, that comment was made.

'I continued with the meeting and dismissed the comment. I'm not really sure why I didn't complain immediately in hindsight.

'It was an element of disbelief and the fact I didn't take it as: "Oh my gosh, this man can't ever work here again." It was when additional incidents and allegations were being made and I realised this wasn't one-off behaviour, this was an ongoing thing.'

When Qurashi later asked her for her number, she laughed and brushed it aside. 'He would ask me for my number and say things like: "How would your boyfriend feel if we went for a coffee?" I didn't respond. He certainly asked for my number more than once,' she said.

Counsel for the GMC Simon Jackson QC said: 'There are three elements to the GMC’s misconduct case. Firstly, inappropriate remarks or questions with a sexual overtone. Secondly, refusals to assist colleagues with tasks and thirdly, two incidents of alleged sexual assault.

'Right from the outset of his appointment at the hospital, Dr Qureshi was rather forward in manner and soon began to make inappropriate remarks to female colleagues. As early as the induction meeting with the hospital manager and Miss A when Dr Qureshi was discussing the timetable, he spontaneously said to her: "Does your nail polish reflect the colour of your underwear?"

“She didn’t take the remark seriously but was surprised at how forward he was. They were to be future colleagues and had only just met. He plainly did not treat Miss A with respect on this occasion and other colleagues on other occasions.'

Describing his use of the dating website, Mr Jackson added: 'While in the nurses station and again in the company of Ms C, Dr Qureshi used his mobile phone on the ward, which is not permitted, and in the course of doing so told Ms C he was logged into a dating website and then proceeded to show her a picture of a teenage girl in a bikini on his mobile and said the girl in the picture had a good pair of legs.

'On another occasion while working together he asked Ms C out on a date. The witness will say that this course of conduct by Dr Qureshi made her feel uncomfortable while in his presence and when she sensed he might seek her out to do clinical tasks - the request being an excuse to talk to her - she took steps to avoid it.

'The GMC alleges all these incidents had a thinly-disguised sexual overtone. Not simply over-personal or intrusive or rude, but when looked at in the context, all had an underlying theme of the doctor wanting to pursue sexual conduct or a sexual relationship with the women he approached and spoke to in this way.'

Qureshi admits telling Ms C she reminded him of an ex-girlfriend but denies all other allegations. The hearing continues.


UK: Evangelical preacher who called Islam 'heathen' and 'satanic' and hailed Enoch Powell as a prophet is CLEARED of making grossly offensive remarks

Evangelical Protestant preacher Pastor James McConnell has been found not guilty of making grossly offensive remarks during a sermon in which he described Islam as 'heathen', 'satanic'.

This afternoon Pastor James McConnell, 78, of Newtownabbey, Co Antrim, walked free from Belfast Magistrates' Court after being cleared of sending grossly offensive messages.

The high profile evangelical pastor had been charged with two alleged offences after the sermon delivered from the pulpit of his Whitewell Metropolitan Tabernacle on May 18, 2014 was streamed online.

In his sermon he described Islam as a 'doctrine spawned in hell' and said he did not trust Muslims.

But following a hearing he was today cleared of improper use of a public electronic communications network and causing a grossly offensive message to be sent by means of a public electronic communications network.

The court heard although the words upon which the charges were based were offensive, they did not reach the high threshold of being 'grossly offensive'.

Delivering his reserved judgment, District Judge Liam McNally said: 'The courts need to be very careful not to criminalise speech which, however contemptible, is no more than offensive.

'It is not the task of the criminal law to censor offensive utterances. 'Accordingly I find Pastor McConnell not guilty of both charges.'

As the judge delivered his reserved judgment, the crowd of up to 50 Christian supporters who had packed into the public gallery of courtroom 13 erupted into applause.

The judge said: 'He is a man with strong, passionate and sincerely held beliefs.

'In my view Pastor McConnell's mindset was that he was preaching to the converted in the form of his own congregation and like-minded people who were listening to his service rather than preaching to the worldwide internet.

'His passion and enthusiasm for his subject caused him to, so to speak, "lose the run of himself"'.

The judge said the comments about Islam being 'heathen' and 'satanic' were protected under human rights legislation.

When considering the remarks about mistrusting Muslims, Judge McNally said he was satisfied the pastor had not set out to intentionally cause offence.

If the preacher had qualified his remarks, as he did in subsequent media interviews, he could have been spared the legal battle, the court was told.

Judge McNally said: 'If he had clarified this in his sermon and set out in a clear and precise way why Sharia law was repugnant to him he could have saved himself a lot of trouble.

'In the manner in which he did express this he has, in my view characterised the followers of an entire religion in a stereotypical way.

'Indeed when he uses the word 'may' in the context of whether there are any good Muslims it leaves open the inference that that might not be exactly right and there may not be any good Muslims in Britain. Either way, he is making it crystal clear that he does not trust any Muslim.'

The distinction between offensive and grossly offensive was an important one and not easily made, the court heard.

'Context and circumstances are highly relevant and as the European Court of Human Rights observed... the right to freedom of expression includes the right to say things or express opinions that offend, shock or disturb the state or any section of the population,' said Judge McNally.

Throughout proceedings Mr McConnell, who was dressed in a dark grey suit with grey shirt and pink and purple coloured tie, sat alongside his wife Margaret and other family members. He was not required to sit in the dock.

During the three day trial in December, Mr McConnell spent more than an hour in the witness box giving evidence in his defence. He said he had not intended to provoke, hurt or offend anyone but was unrepentant for preaching the Christian gospel.

He also claimed he had refused the lesser punishment of an informed warning because it would be an insult to Jesus and he did not want to be 'gagged' in the future.

The prosecution had claimed it was a 'straightforward' case because the words were delivered in a rehearsed sermon to an audience of 2,000 and watched by 700 online, and had been carefully chosen.

Outside court hundreds of supporters cheered as Mr McConnell emerged. Some sang hymns as the preacher gave his reaction to the judgement. 'I am very happy,' he said, before adding he would do the sermon again, though word it differently.

'The only regret I have is the response from the Muslim community - that I was out to hurt them,' he said. 'There was no way I was out to hurt them - I wouldn't hurt a hair on their head.

'But what I am against is their theology and what they believe in.

'If there are Muslims out there I want to assure them I love them and, if they need help, I am there to help them, but their theology and their beliefs I am totally against them.'

He added: 'I would do it again but I would word it differently because I would be conscious I was hurting innocent Muslims, I would be conscious I was hurting Muslims who have come here to work hard and are doing their best - there's no way I would hurt those people, but I would do it again - yes.'

The pastor said he did not realise how far his sermon would travel. 'As far as I was concerned I was preaching to my own people, I was preaching in my own church - I didn't realise it would go out there and so forth,' he said.

Mr McConnell also said he believed he had said 'worse things' in other sermons that had been streamed on-line.


The only gun control that works is "incorrect"

The President, Hillary Clinton, and their type in the legacy media have devoted much time to advocating the disarming of law abiding Americans and labeling the National Rifle Association as a terrorist organization. Their claim is that if the Congress would only enact common sense gun safety laws our long national nightmare would soon be over.

The problem is that none of the gun schemes they advocate have a logical connection to the problem. Many cities including Baltimore, Chicago and Detroit have become weekend shooting galleries with most of the victims being young black males and some collateral damage of a number of five-year-olds and other innocents caught in the crossfire.

While no one policy would solve this problem there is one that has proven itself to have a tremendous positive impact. It is called, “stop, question, and frisk.” It is a law enforcement program designed to take illegal guns off the streets and thereby reduce the number of gun homicides. People engaged in suspicious activity are stopped, questioned, and if necessary, frisked. If they are found to have an illegal gun in their possession, they are eligible for a three-year mandatory prison sentence. It works. The number of guns on the streets dropped dramatically.

Following the crime ridden reign of Mayor David Dinkins New Yorkers elected Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Giuliani instituted the program and it was continued by leftist Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

The results were stunning. The number of homicides in New York City went 2,605 in 1990 to 414 in 2012. This is an 84 percent annual reduction in lives lost, a majority of them black lives.  With this kind of record you would think that the Black Lives Matter movement would be on the streets demanding that the program halted by Mayor DeBlasio be reinstated since the murder rate is predictably rising since the program ceased.

But no. The leftist solution to the rising urban crime rate is to release thousands drug dealing merchants of death back on to the streets and take the guns away from otherwise defenseless law abiding Americans.

The reason Clinton, Obama, De Blasio oppose a program that actually works is the same reason they oppose most effective law enforcement, political correctness. While a majority of those stopped and questioned in high crime areas are not frisked no one likes to be frisked.

The left also goes to absurd lengths to deny the effectiveness of the program.  Take this quote from Mother Jones as reprinted in the Aug. 13, 2013 Washington Post:

“As Kevin Drum says in Mother Jones, the thing driving the drop in crime in New York, as everywhere, might not have anything to do with policing. It’s likely the removal of lead from gasoline and house paint, he argues. Several studies have found that lead exposure can damage children’s brain development, affecting their behavior. Rick Nevin, and economist and a leading researcher on crime and lead questions, notes that there has been far more progress on removing lead in New York City than in other large cities like Chicago or Detroit…”

The piece continues, “New York’s lead removal efforts are commendable and are a more than adequate explanation of why it’s seen sharper crime drops than other cities. There’s no reason to credit alienating policies like stop and frisk here.”

Really?  And now that the program has been halted and homicides are going back up it no doubt is because lead has been snuck back into the gasoline supplies of New York?

Since the residents of urban black neighborhoods are more likely to be victimized by crime, naturally police concentrated on protecting them. This is known as racial profiling which in the mind of the left cannot be tolerated.  Better that they be victims of homicide than they be profiled.


The ‘silencing of Christians’ in Britain's public sector

Christianity is being subtly “silenced” within the public sector in the UK because of a civil service culture which treats speaking about faith as “not the done thing”, according to a former top Whitehall mandarin appointed as Church of England’s most senior lay official.

William Nye said a “secularising spirit” now permeates the machinery of government, leading to an unspoken “squeezing out of Christianity” from national life, despite public expressions of support from David Cameron and other ministers.

He said ministers or the general public would be surprised to realise the full extent to which faith is now seen as “odd and unusual” within the public sector in Britain.

Christians working there now rarely “reveal” their beliefs except to close friends for fear of being viewed as biased, he added.

Mr Nye, who spent 20 years in a series of senior Whitehall posts before a spell as Principal Private Secretary to the Prince of Wales, recently took over as the Church of England’s Secretary General.

His appointment comes as the Church embarks on what it describes as a major programme of “renewal and reform” hoping to turn around decades of decline in the numbers in the pews.

The Church’s financial arm, the Church Commissioners, is planning to open up parts of its £6.7 billion endowment to help fund ambitious expansion plans to arrest decline. But it is also facing growing challenges from within its own ranks as it grapples with divisions over issues such as homosexuality.

Speaking to The Telegraph in his first interview since taking on the post, Mr Nye voiced optimism that congregations will recover but warned the decline is likely to continue for at least another five years.

After a career as a senior civil servant with posts ranging from overseeing arts policy to national security and counter-terrorism he said it was a “joy” to work in an environment where he could “talk more openly” about his faith.

“I think there has been, in the 20 years I was in the public sector, a sort of squeezing out of Christianity from many aspects of the public sector,” he said.

"People who aren’t in the public sector don’t realise quite how that secularising spirit has led to the silencing of Christians.”
William Nye

“[It is] not universal – obviously there are chaplains in hospitals, there are chaplains in prisons – and I don’t think it is ministers doing it deliberately.”

He added in many cases it is likely that ministers probably had “no idea” that it was going on and that but that few officials would even let it be known that they were Christians.

Mr Nye said that he had been asked recently to suggest possible candidates from within the civil service for a senior post in the Church of England, a job which requires the candidate to support the Church’s Christian aims.

He said: “I had to say ‘you know I’m not sure I would be able to think of many people because, why would I know about anyone in government who is a Christian unless they are a personal friend?’

“Personal friends might have revealed to me that they are Christians but other people in government, central government departments, wouldn’t do that. “They wouldn’t let it be known that they were Christians.”

He added: “I think people who aren’t in the public sector don’t realise quite how that secularising spirit has led to the silencing of Christians in a way that isn’t actually, I think, what people nationally want, or people are necessarily aware of.

“There is a lot of support, I think, for the Church of England doing its job as the Queen said ‘gently and assuredly’ – for the quiet work of the Church of England. “But quiet work shouldn’t mean silent.”

Part of the explanation could be a form of “self-censorship” by Christians themselves in response to the working culture in Whitehall, he said.  “Looking back on it I feel there may be an element of that and, I think, just a sense that it’s not really the ‘done thing’ to talk about religion in the 21st century, especially in government.

“You know: does it imply that you’ve somehow got some sort of axe to grind or it’s something odd and unusual?

“Of course, actually, in practice everybody, all my former colleagues in the civil service, all bring their own perspectives and their own personal beliefs to bear.

“They all, I genuinely believe, try to be neutral and objective but they all bring their beliefs to bear and so do Christians but Christians sort of feel [it is better] not to say about it.

“It is now a joy for me to be in a place where, although having spent 20 years not talking about my faith … one can talk more openly about it.”

His new post, overseeing the day-to-day running of the Church of England, will also see him play a key role in shaking up red tape as part of the drive to win people back.

But he said that, while the Church leadership was “prayerfully confident” it could return to growth, talk of numbers at services bottoming out and preparing to increase could be premature.

“I am always happy to be taken by surprise by some unexpected good news but realistically I think it is probably at least five years,” he said.

“You can see pockets of very good growth in some places but we are a national church with thousands and thousands of parishes and it takes time and money for things to change.”



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


6 January, 2016

The real reason there are no women of colour in 'Suffragette'

I put up yesterday a conservative critique of the "Suffragette" movie.  Below is a Leftist critique. I reproduce the whole plaint but the whole thing could be reduced to a complaint that the movie did not evangelize for common leftist themes such as class war and racism.

The feminist concerned has not got it into her woolly head that the job of the movie is to entertain, not to crusade

Didactic films are normally very boring and attract very small audiences -- even among those who agree with the didactic intent

I knew I was going to feel torn about Suffragette well before I watched the film. The fight for western women's right to vote is a key moment in the history of global feminism and it deserves to be remembered. But the all-white cast threatened to overshadow the film's subject matter, and I can understand why some have called for a boycott and why others refused to write a review of the film.

I have made a point of calling out whitewashing in popular culture whenever I see it occur, which is often. In regards to Suffragette, it is certainly peculiar that a film set in London, even early in the 20th century, would not feature any people of colour whatsoever, let alone in pivotal roles. But then again, I've always thought of the British suffragette movement as a predominantly white women's cause. Not since my teenage years had I entertained the notion that the white suffragettes were fighting for the rights of women like me.

Yes, there is whitewashing in Suffragette but it does not take the form that critics lamenting its lack of suffragettes of colour say it does. It's true that some women of colour (WoC) were involved in the movement. Historical proof of their involvement include photographs such as this:

This photograph of Indian suffragettes was taken at the Women's Coronation Procession in 1911, where contingents from the various British colonies were present in order "to show the strength of support for women's suffrage throughout the Empire." So they were not there for their own rights, so much as they were there to bolster the cause of white suffragettes.

The Indian suffragettes were a select group of women, wealthy aristocrats with ties to the British ruling class and whose social status permitted them to work alongside key figures like Emmeline Pankhurst.

That's not to say all the Indian suffragettes were shilling for white supremacy. Indeed, some of them also fought for Indian independence, including Princess Sophie Duleep Singh who, despite living with the British royal family and being the goddaughter of Queen Victoria, also collaborated with Indian activists and proved herself to be a right royal pain in the proverbial by refusing to pay her taxes until women had the vote.

However, their involvement, rather than indicating that the suffragette movement was inclusive (it wasn't), reveals more about the class system in the UK than it does about the struggle for suffrage.

And that is where the problem with Suffragette really lies. It's not that it doesn't honour suffragettes who were WoC, it's that it doesn't even touch on why non-white women were largely excluded.

As historian Jad Adams, author of Women and The Vote: A World History, told The Telegraph, "I don't know of any British black women being involved in the movement... They were not very public... They were lower working class people and tended to be disenfranchised in many ways."

Sadly, much of the marginalisation of WoC came at the hands of white women who, despite fighting for their own rights, were nonetheless content to let racism persist. Had the film depicted WoC fighting alongside white women, it would have given the false impression that the latter saw them as their equals, whereas white suffragettes were frequently firm believers in white supremacy.

"I wouldn't presume [black women] would have been welcome [in the suffrage movement] if they'd joined," Adams says.

In other words, including working class WoC in the film would have been dishonest because to even be able to agitate for women's suffrage required a certain degree of privilege and freedom.

As much as I enjoyed the film because it tells the story of a pivotal moment in history - the repercussions and results of which reverberate to this day - from the perspective of the working poor, who are themselves often ignored by history, it still falls into the trap that so many stories told by white people do: it completely overlooks the racism of its protagonists and the role this played on the course of history.

Emmeline Pankhurst has mythic status in Suffragette. But she was also a fierce believer in colonialism who thought WoC needed white women to look out for them. Her quip "I'd rather be a rebel than a slave" was uncritically used in - and to promote - the film even though some of her contemporaries thought her comparisons to slavery were in poor taste. Meanwhile, other key suffragettes were furious that Maori women in NZ had gotten the vote before they did.

The biggest oversight of the film then is not that it doesn't include WoC suffragettes, but that it doesn't even touch on the reasons why there was so few of them. There are many ways WoC could have been included in the film. Princess Sophie Singh could have appeared alongside Emmeline Pankhurst as she often did in real life. Some of the main characters' neighbours could have been black. Perhaps a black co-worker in the commercial laundry where much of the film takes place could have attempted to join the movement only to be cruelly shunned. That would have been powerful cinema. But it would also require a degree of honest examination of history that many white storytellers are still sorely lacking.

As it stands, Suffragette is an important film because it depicts the struggle for emancipation of a marginalised group. But, while we have much to thank them for, we should not make the mistake of assuming, as the film appears to, that the suffragettes were fighting for anyone's benefit but their own. Suffragette is history not as it really was, but as white people wish it to be: with the racism removed. 


German police hunt for group of up to 1,000 men 'of Arab and North African origin' who sexually assaulted numerous women and threw fireworks into crowds at Cologne train station on New Year's Eve

German police are hunting for a group of up to a 1,000 men 'of Arab and North African origin' who are accused of sexually assaulting numerous women and causing trouble at Cologne's main station.

Police described the series of sexual assaults against women in Cologne on New Year's Eve as 'a completely new dimension of crime.'

Officers received numerous complaints from women who said they had been assaulted around Cologne's main train station next to the western German city's famous cathedral on the night from Thursday to Friday.

The group of men reportedly also robbed their victims and threw fireworks at a crowd of people, according to Breitbart.

Cologne police chief Wolfgang Albers said witnesses described the assaults as coming from a group of up to 1,000 men whose appearance indicated they were of 'Arab or North African origin.'

Some 60 criminal complaints have so far been filed, including one allegation of rape.

German news agency dpa quoted Albers telling reporters on Monday that it was 'an intolerable situation that such crimes are committed in the middle of the city.' 

One of the victims, named only as 'Katja L', gave a harrowing testimony of her ordeal. 'When we came out of the station, we were very surprised by the group that met us there'. She said the group was 'exclusively young foreign men,' she told Der Express.

'We then walked through this group of men. There was an alley through [the men] which we walked through.'

She described the moment she 'felt a hand on my buttocks, then on my breasts, in the end'. 'I was groped everywhere. It was a nightmare. Although we shouted and beat them, the guys did not stop. I was desperate and think I was touched around 100 times in the 200 meters,' she said.

'Fortunately I wore a jacket and trousers. A skirt would probably have been torn away from me'.

It is unclear if the gang of men are migrants but opinions remain divided in Cologne over the recent influx of migrants with protests held by PEGIDA and a campaign supporting migrants.


Repent or we quit say bishops in gays feud: Anglican church could split in challenge to Cantuar's authority

Sad that only African and Asian Anglicans respect Bible teachings

Church leaders from Africa and Asia are threatening to walk out of a crucial meeting chaired by the Archbishop of Canterbury unless American bishops drop their support for gay marriage.

Archbishop Justin Welby last year invited the leaders of the worldwide Anglican Church to the summit in Canterbury next week in a ‘make or break’ effort to avert a permanent split over homosexuality.

The row has torn the Church apart for a decade – with conservatives accusing liberals of abandoning the word of God by backing openly gay bishops and marriages for gay couples – and the Archbishop wants to broker a deal to allow both sides to co-exist peacefully.

But insiders said a hardcore of eight to 12 conservative archbishops from Africa and Asia are preparing to quit the meeting on the first morning unless the liberal Americans ‘repent’ or the Archbishop throws them out.

In what would be a massive challenge to Archbishop Welby’s authority, the conservatives, who represent some of the biggest of the 38 individual Churches in the worldwide ‘Communion’, are then likely move to their own headquarters nearby for the rest of the meeting.

While they are unlikely immediately to break their historic ties with the Archbishop of Canterbury – the nominal head of the Communion – they would boycott future official meetings and set up a parallel church, drawing away traditionalists from the Church of England.

The Mail on Sunday has learned that feelings are running so high that the three most powerful leaders, the Archbishops of Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda, were last week on the brink of snubbing the meeting altogether, but were persuaded to attend by colleagues still hoping to force concessions from Welby.

Sources said they have lost patience with the Archbishop’s refusal to discipline the liberals for ignoring official policy urging them to refrain from creating gay bishops or approving gay marriage without widespread agreement.

But liberal leaders have said Archbishop Welby has assured them that no one will be expelled from the meeting.

The Archbishop will instead propose that the Communion becomes a more loosely linked ‘federation’ to keep everyone in the ‘family’ – which aides have compared to ‘moving into separate bedrooms’ rather than full-scale divorce.

The bitter divisions led Archbishop Welby to postpone last year’s Lambeth Conference, the regular gathering of all Anglican bishops from around the world that has been held nearly every decade, except during the two world wars, since the 1860s.

The last, in 2008, was boycotted by key conservatives furious with the liberal American Church for consecrating an openly gay bishop, Gene Robinson, in 2003. The Americans accuse conservatives of fostering homophobic attitudes.

The Church of England currently bans same sex marriage in church, but it is under huge pressure to relax its stance. Lambeth Palace said: ‘The Archbishop has invited everyone. If people walk out that will be viewed with disappointment rather than anger, and the door will always be open.’


A victory for free speech: The Australian army versus outspoken Major Bernard Gaynor

The man they couldn't fire: A good soldier persecuted for his Christian beliefs and criticism of Islam.  The Army has however appealed his win in the Federal Court to the High Court. The High Court is however where a right of free speech for Australians was first found so the bet should be on Gaynor to win again

The Australian Defence Force has just suffered an embarrassing defeat in which the armed forces appear primarily as a federal government department rather than a combat force. Most of the fighting is done behind desks.

The mission, duty and special legal status which sets our military apart from almost all other elements of society, is that it exists to detect, deter, suppress and, when necessary, kill people deemed a threat to the nation. The ultimate power of government is always rooted in part on weaponry and the authority and willingness to use it.

With the exception of our superbly-trained Special Air Service Regiment and Commando regiments, hunting and killing is rarely on the mind of Australian Army personnel.

Based on the very extensive advertising and recruiting campaigns that the military services roll out every year, the main point of joining the armed forces is to gain skilled qualifications at no cost and see the world.

Don't mention the war.

For much of this year, in the Federal Court of Australia, the extensive resources of the ADF have been pitted against the threadbare resources of a single, sacked Army Reserve officer who the ADF is determined to ostracise, humiliate and terminate.

The ADF has been highly successful in ostracising him, not surprising given the military's long and inglorious record of tolerating hazing, bullying and bastardisation.

But as for terminating this officer, he has proved hard to kill.

Last Friday, a judgment handed down by Justice Robert Buchanan, Bernard Gaynor v Chief of the Defence Force (2015), found that the ADF had acted unlawfully in terminating the commission of Army Reserve Major Bernard (Bernie) Gaynor jnr.

He ordered that this termination be set aside.

Justice Buchanan wrote: "The applicant has strong views which he attributes to the teachings and doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church. As they relate to the events which led to the termination of his commission, those views were expressed as an antipathy to overt tolerance or support of homosexuality or transgender behaviour as well as statements critical of adherents of Islam.

"The applicant served in Iraq in 2006-7, 2008-9 and 2009 and also briefly in Afghanistan in 2006. He was awarded the United States of America Meritorious Service Medal in October 2009. His general competence is not in issue."

The 90,000-word judgment includes critical and unflattering observations about Gaynor's conduct, which included "a deliberate and calculated course of open defiance".

However, where it mattered the judge found in his favour: "The fact that [Gaynor's] conduct involved direct disobedience of orders does not sufficiently change matters … Freedom of political communication was burdened… [when] his commission as an officer was terminated… [His] conduct involved the expression of political opinion, effectively as a private citizen."

Justice Buchanan found that being sacked for holding personal political views, even in defiance of orders, was too fundamental a right to be quashed in the name of military discipline.

On Tuesday, Gaynor responded by writing in his blog: "Politicised militaries and democracies do not mix well."

The judgment will unnerve the military command. It is easy to see why. In a posting on Facebook in March, 2013, Gaynor wrote:

"The war in Afghanistan has been an utter failure but it is the government's domestic policies which have completely betrayed the efforts of soldiers serving on operations. In the time our Army has been in Afghanistan the number of Muslims in Australia has increased from around 280,000 to 476,000. Anyone who thinks Australia is safer as a result is deluded …

While our soldiers have been fighting, taking casualties and dying in Afghanistan to protect Australia's interests and values from violent Islamists our own government has allowed them to take root inside our borders."

He has since pointed out that twice as many Australian Muslims went to join Islamic State than are enlisted in the ADF. When I checked with Defence media they said there were 100 self-identified Muslims out of 81,000 ADF and Reserve personal. So Gaynor is right.

He has already begun his next battle. He will contest next year's federal election as the Senate candidate in Queensland for the Australian Liberty Alliance. He intends to remain in the Army Reserve.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


5 January, 2016

Western feminists airbrush the horrors of their Muslim sisters

The acclaimed new film Suffragette is a timely reminder of courageous reformers who placed reform before personal safety and revolutionised the world for women.

But today, the feminist movement seems bizarrely out of touch with the original, universal standards of their forbears. In sidelining Muslim women’s basic rights, today’s feminists ignore the suffragette legacy and the necessity for urgent reform of international human rights violations.

How would Emmeline Pankhurst and her colleagues respond if they found modern feminists indifferent to reports of young girls from ethnic and religious minorities kidnapped, raped, sold into sexual slavery or forced to marry Islamic State fighters? They might be astonished to learn that Muslim dissidents Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Taslima Nasreen, who promote secular humanism, gender equality, and freedom to criticise religion, live in constant danger due to death threats.

They might be troubled by the perils for women activists in Afghanistan, where public servant Safia Amajan, politician Sitara Achakzai, police officer Malalai Kakar and Indian author Sushmita Banerjee were gunned down by the Taliban.

On further inquiry, the suffragettes would be surprised to discover that Western feminists rarely challenge sexist laws in the Muslim world. These include polygyny and unilateral divorce. In a courtroom, women’s testimony is worth half that of a man’s, and women are entitled to less inheritance and reduced awards in cases of compensation for injury. Domestic violence is rarely punished, and forced or early marriage is acceptable. Victims of rape can be accused and punished for illicit sex. In some conservative Muslim majority countries, stoning is a punishment for adultery and women are unable to leave the house without their husband’s permission.

Suffragettes would question why millions of Muslim women were still second-class citizens when the free world and the UN pride themselves on countless NGOs dedicated to advancing women’s rights.

Saudi Arabian feminist Wajeha al-Huwaider has campaigned for women to drive a car, and launched YouTube videos against child marriage and male domination. In a push against guardian laws, her slogan read, “Treat us like adults or we’ll leave the country.” When Huwaider and her colleague Fawzia Al-Oyouni tried to assist a woman whose husband had locked her and the children in the house without food, they were charged with the crime of takhbib (inciting a wife to disobey her husband), sentenced to 10 months in prison.

Reformers such as Huwaider and Oyouni, are fearless campaigners, but there seems to be a deep disjunction between their objectives and those of contemporary feminists.

A sequel to Suffragettes might feature a conversation between activists of the first wave, who campaigned for the right to vote, those in the second liberation wave of the 60s, and the third wave of contemporary feminists, focused on sexual identity, culture and ethnicity.

The latter would surely face condemnation for discounting injustices deemed intolerable in their own societies. Modern feminists have neglected to empower the new Muslim suffragettes — their natural partners.

Collaboration of the feminist movement with the far left has entrenched notions of hostility to Western values, fostered a romantic lure of revolutionary movements, and found common cause with the anti-Western ideology of radical Islam. The alliance between feminists and the far Left has been reinforced by the philosophy of cultural relativism that has curbed criticism of different cultures.

Instead of joining the new suffragettes, third-wave feminists have pursued a fashionable counterculture and diet of Marxist leftovers. Worse, they have turned against the original principles of freedom and equality and joined with the enemies of their Muslim sisters.

Some avenues for freedom have opened up for women in Afghanistan with constitutional guarantees of political representation, and in Saudi Arabia, where women have been put on the advisory Shura Council and allowed to stand in municipal elections.

Despite much unfinished work to combat sexism in the West, reform of Muslim women’s rights is a pressing imperative and meaningful investment in global female solidarity.

Perhaps the feminist movement could regain its momentum and high moral ground if activists write their own sequel to Suffragettes by uniting in a “democratic international of women” against institutionalised discrimination and “the horror of God’s State”, as entreated by Algerian Khalida Messaoudi. Otherwise, feminists risk being unworthy heirs of the suffragette movement.


Prominent British atheist condemns Muslim credulity

Professor Richard Dawkins has launched a fresh attack on Islamic belief.  The furious academic walked out of an interview when a Muslim journalist confirmed he personally believed the prophet Muhammad flew to heaven on a winged horse.

Dawkins, 74, author of best-seller The God Delusion, told the New Statesmen's Emad Ahmed that his belief was "pathetic" before angrily storming off.

A shocked Ahmed said: "Dawkins is outspoken about religion, particularly Islam, so I was genuinely stunned when he decided to angrily walk away from our interview after I confirmed my beliefs in the revelations of the Islamic faith, calling my views "pathetic".

But the evolutionary biologist took to Twitter to defend his latest outburst.

He said: "I left when he said Muhammad rode a winged horse. A non-timewasting journalist needs at least SOME grasp of reality."

He added: "Ridiculing belief in a winged horse is not "bigotry", not "Islamophobia", not "racism". It's sober, decent, gentle, scientific realism."

The 74-year-old went on: "If you believe you're Napoleon or a poached egg, you're in an asylum.

"If you believe in winged horses you're a New Statesman journalist."

He later explained in more detail: " I'm accused of refusing to be interviewed by Muslim journalists! Here's what actually happened.

"I was at a Royal Society meeting to launch the new Stephen Hawking Prize for Science Communication.

"The very nice PR woman arranged press interviews for the speakers. Science communication is dear to my heart, and I agreed to be pulled out of the conference for a series of interviews, on condition that the journalists would ask me about the Hawking Prize & STARMUS, not religion.

"One journalist, from New Statesman, soon made it clear that he wanted to talk of nothing but religion. My impatience grew, fed by my desire to rejoin the conference.

"I kept trying to drag him back to the agreed topic. Eventually, the PR woman arrived & signalled to the journalist that his time was up, but he asked to be allowed to carry on.

"He had just admitted that he believed in flying horses. In exasperation that I had left the conference to talk to a time-wasting journalist whose world view was ludicrously unconnected with reality, I terminated the interview and went off with the PR woman.

"I now find myself accused of refusing to be interviewed by Muslim journalists!"

Last month Dawkins said Islamic culture could "go to hell" on a live TV chat show in the United States when referring to some practices in Islam, such as women being made to wear burkhas.

Nor is it is not the first time Dawkins has attacked the belief in the ascension of Muhammad.

In an interview with Al Jazeera journalist Mehdi Hasan, filmed at the Oxford Union in 2012 - which you can watch below - Dawkins mocked the host telling him his belief was "anti-scientific and wrong".

The Qur'an briefly refers to the Isra and Miraj, two parts of a night journey Muhammad took during a single night in the year 621.

The "physical and spiritual journey" sees the Islamic prophet travel on the steed Buraq to the "furthest mosque" where he leads other prophets in prayer.  He then ascends to heaven in the Miraj journey where he speaks to God, who gives instructions to take back to the faithful.

Dawkins - who was once named the world's leading thinker by Prospect Magazine - has been equally critical of other religions.

He has described Judaism as a "tribal cult of a single fiercely unpleasant God, morbidly obsessed with sexual restrictions".

And he once claimed that being raised a Catholic and taught to fear hellfire is "worse than child abuse."

Just today he Tweeted: "Culturally the UK is a Christian country. But schools should teach comparative religion and atheism. They should NEVER indoctrinate."

Dawkins was born in Kenya but moved to Britain aged eight He studied at Oundle School, in Northamptonshire, before reading Zoology at university at Oxford University, where he is now an emeritus fellow of New College.

He became an atheist in his early teens after learning about Darwin’s theory of evolution and has written 13 books on evolution, biology and religion, including several international best-sellers.


Matisyahu rocks Ithaca – Huge Win for Artistic Freedom

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has been targeting American Reggae musician Matisyahu because he is Jewish and refuses to denounce Israel.

In the summer of 2015 an international firestorm of controversy erupted after BDS succeeded in getting Matisyahu banned at the Spanish Rototom Reggae festival. The ban was reversed only after an international outcry, including denunciations by the Spanish government and a leading Spanish newspaper that the action amounted to religious discrimination.

So when Matisyahu booked an appearance in Ithaca, NY, as part of his world tour, it was not long before the local BDS crowd, including our own BDS “star,” sought a boycott of the event and planned a protest.

But it didn’t work.

There was a substantial backlash in favor of artistic freedom. Ithaca resident Linda Glaser wrote a powerful op-ed in The Ithaca Journal, Let Jewish artist perform in Ithaca:

"Artistic freedom is the right of every American, as it is based on the First Amendment right of freedom of speech. The Ithaca Coalition for Unity and Cooperation in the Middle East (ICU-CME) supports the right of American musician Matisyahu to perform and to be heard free from intimidation at the State Theatre of Ithaca.

Untrue statements are being spread by the Ithaca Committee for Justice in Palestine about Matisyahu to justify their discrimination against him. Because he is a prominent Jewish artist who refuses to take an anti-Zionist position, BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) supporters around the world are attempting to block his cultural and artistic expression.

As Matisyahu has said, “I have always believed in the power of music to unite all people, regardless of religion, politics or geography.”

We urge the Ithaca community to stand for artistic freedom and reject the boycott of American musician Matisyahu."

The much ballyhooed “boycott” and protest fizzled out. Mostly the handful of BDS protesters just handed out leaflets. Every person who received one of the BDS leaflets was given an alternative, pro-Artistic Freedom leaflet.

I heard several of the younger people comment with friends how ridiculous it was that BDS was trying to politicize the event.

One Ithaca resident commented:

"Crazy evening but a good one for for the pro-peace, pro-love crowd. Handed out hundreds of flyers, lots of conversations; the good, the bad and the ugly. Matisyahu came out and thanked us, and we also met his Mom and got a Jewish power Mom group photo. We outnumbered the BDS supporters and we had cool signs and better flyers.

The concert itself was fantastic. While there were some empty seats towards the back, the main sections were full. Not that seating mattered, because as soon as the music started, the crowd of mostly 20-somethings rushed forward toward the stage, where they danced and shouted for songs.

I was very impressed with Matisyahu’s performance, though disappointed he didn’t sing some of his best known songs.  There is no doubt the crowd loved it too, based on what I heard as we left.

All in all, it was a wonderful time, and a huge belly-blow to the local BDS crowd. After their stunning defeat at the Greenstar Food Coop, the defeat at the Battle of Matisyahu may signal that Ithaca no longer is a BDS playground where they can bully people into submission.


Update on the "BDS" anti-Israel campaign

2015 ended with BDS supporters co-opting more campus governments and causes to discriminate against Jewish students. At the same time, more BDS resolutions were defeated and steps taken to prevent student governments from adopting Israel boycotts. These signs suggest that BDS movement’s overreach is producing backlash, at least in terms of energizing campus opposition. A similar dynamic is apparent in the political sphere where efforts to isolate Israel economically have been met with local legislation prohibiting Israel boycotts. The lesson of 2015 is that grassroots opposition to BDS can work, both on campus and in the political system.


The fall semester ended in December with several incidents where BDS supporters used student government to harass Jewish students and organizations for supporting Israel. At the University of Michigan a Jewish member of student government was exonerated after an investigation found he “did not engage in unethical behavior or engage in conduct unbecoming of a representative” by verbally challenging BDS supporters. The BDS group – “Students Allied for Freedom and Equality (SAFE)” – had accused the student of abusive conduct. The use of campus disciplinary mechanisms against individuals who challenge BDS has been seen several times, most notably at UCLA in the spring of 2015.

At Vassar the local branch of J Street University was initially denied the right to apply for event funding by the student government on the grounds that “Zionism is an inherently racist ideology.” The funding was eventually approved. A pro-Israel group at San Diego State University was also excluded from a student statement against Islamophobia after the local Students for Justice in Palestine objected. Efforts to exclude Jewish and pro-Israel groups and individuals from campus life are likely to expand in 2016.

Straightforward harassment was also evident in December. At Connecticut College posters placed around campus by BDS supporters accusing the Taglit-Birthright program of being “settler-colonialism.” This followed BDS supporters’ harassment and calls for the dismissal of a faculty member who had criticized Hamas on his Facebook page. To these were added disruptions of Jewish and pro-Israel campus events by BDS supporters, incidents of vandalism, and physical assaults on Jewish students.

Other notable developments are deepening connections between BDS supporters and unrelated causes. One example of this was seen at Columbia University where a sexual assault awareness group called “No Red Tape” collaborated with Students for Justice in Palestine, condemning Zionism on social media and condoning anti-Israel speech on the theory “that its anti-Israel position stems from commonalities between the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.” This theoretical approach, “intersectionality,” essentially claims that all forms of ‘oppression’ are intrinsically related. Anti-Israel activists have used the concept in order to attach BDS to mainstream causes like feminism and to vilify Israel.

Another example of how BDS has been folded into campus protests was the “Stop the Sellout” letter sent to the president of Ohio State University by the “United Students Against Sweatshops.” The letter demands a “fair, humane, ecologically sound, community based, and transparent food system that prioritizes student voice,” an end to “all current future endeavors to privatize our public university and cater to corporate interests,” and “withdraw its investments in entities (ie. Boeing, Caterpillar, etc) complicit in the illegal occupation of Palestinian territories until they are no longer engaged in the violation of human rights and other practices that fail to adhere to the Ohio State’s endorsed Principles of Responsible Investment.” Connections between the BDS and other far left movements like “Black Lives Matter” have also grown substantially over 2015.

But in December backlash against BDS cooption of campus life was also seen, for example at UCLA. There the Undergraduate Student Association Council adopted a resolution restricting the council to “matters directly and substantially pertaining to student welfare issues.” These were defined as “issues pertaining to student (health), resources, education, safety.” Political issues such as Israel boycotts were thus put off limits, an outcome predictably condemned by pro-BDS students. One pro-BDS student complained that the restriction negatively affected “student wellness.” The resolution came in the wake of several incidents at UCLA, including adoption of a BDS resolution and harassment of Jewish student members of the undergraduate council.

At Indiana University the student government passed a resolution condemning antisemitism. The statement also specified that the “Indiana University Student Association recognizes that the Jewish people, like all peoples, have a collective right to self-determination, and considers attempts to undermine these rights, including the global BDS Movement against Israel, to be a form of bigotry.” A boycott resolution at Lancaster University was defeated, but only because a large number of students abstained from the vote.

In other campus news, a BDS resolution adopted by the union representing University of California graduate students, Local 2865, was stuck down by the parent United Auto Workers International Union. The reversal, brought about by an appeal from a group of concerned students, is a major defeat for BDS at California universities.

Faculty support for BDS will be tested in January when BDS resolutions will be debated at the annual meetings of the American Historical Association and the Modern Language Association. Legal scholars have recently pointed out that boycotts likely violate the corporate charters of academic associations, exposing them to lawsuits from members.

Finally, in a shocking example of the pettiness and venom of BDS supporters, a retired faculty member and BDS supporter at Cambridge University refused to answer a 13 year-old Israeli girl’s query regarding the domestication of horses. Her response was to state “I’ll answer your questions when there is peace and justice for Palestinians in Palestine. I am a member of Jews for Justice for Palestinians. I support Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions. You might be a child, but if you are old enough to write to me, you are old enough to learn about Israeli history and how it has impacted on the lives of Palestinian people.” In response to a press inquiry she added “The Jews have become the Nazis. Jews are behaving just like the people who treated them. It’s not all Israelis or all Jews.” The incident received widespread attention and public condemnation.

There were a number of important developments in the political sphere. Despite dissent from member states the European Union pressed forward with labeling guidelines for products originating in Israeli communities across the Green Line. Greece and the Czech Republic have joined other states including Hungary in rejecting the guidelines. In Germany, however, the government announced its support for the guidelines while the president of the Bundestag rejected them. Similarly, in response to a question, French Foreign Minister Manual Valls stated to the Parliament that he condemned “all boycotts” of Israel, but declined to characterize EU labeling guidelines as discriminatory.

Fears continue that the labeling guidelines lay the groundwork for more widespread boycotts of Israel. These fears are given support by reports of German stores removing Israeli products, ostensibly to be relabeled. Other reports show that the EU’s guidelines have given license to BDS activists to place their own labels on Israeli products.

Legal scholars have shown that the EU is applying labeling guidelines only to Israel, as opposed to other “occupied territories” such as the Western Sahara. These and other discriminatory actions are likely to be challenged legally and in setting such as the World Trade Organization. Interestingly, one observer has also noted that a 1995 ruling by the US Treasury stipulates “Goods which are produced in the West Bank and Gaza … shall not contain the words ‘Israel,’ ‘Made in Israel,’ ‘Occupied Territories-Israel,’ or words of similar meaning.”

In the United States a bipartisan resolution was introduced in the US House of Representatives condemning European Union labeling guidelines as discriminatory and accusing the EU of promoting Israel boycotts. Presidential candidate Senator Marco Rubio also condemned the guidelines as “antisemitic.” In a speech at a Washington gathering Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton also repeated her condemnation of the BDS movement but did not address the EU labeling guidelines.

Locally, however, the backlash against BDS continued. In Britain the Department for Communities and Local Government confirmed it was writing guidelines that would forbid local councils from engaging in boycotts or sanctions against individual states and industries, such as arms or fossil fuels. The rules are cast in terms of reaffirming national control over foreign policy. They come after several local councils passed resolutions condemning and boycotting Israel. These now face legal challenges.

Anti-BDS legislation also gained steam in the US. Proposed legislation in New York would prohibit the state from doing business with companies that engage in boycotts specifically of Israel. The town of Bal Harbour, Florida also passed similar legislation, making it the first municipality to do so.

Similar legislation has been proposed in California, which would forbid the state’s enormous pension funds, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS), from investing in companies that boycott Israel. The two pension funds have assets of approximately $500 billion. The New York State Comptroller, the chief investment officer for the state’s pension fund, also visited Israel, partially as a deliberate rebuke to the BDS movement, and to demonstrate continued confidence.

Internationally, BDS did not fare well in December. Spain’s National Court overruled a lower court and quashed arrest warrants for a number of Israeli officials including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. An Israeli reserve military officer was, however, briefly detained at a London airport on the basis of a war crimes complaint lodged by Palestinian organizations. He was released with an apology. The officer’s name had been included in lists of Israeli personnel who had participated in the 2014 Gaza conflict which have been circulated to European governments. Efforts to use European human rights laws against lower ranking Israeli officers represents a new area of harassment and intimidation.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


4 January, 2016

Stop appeasing the Islamic extremists demands British PM as he calls for the whole country to be loyal to British values

Has Cameron finally grown a pair?

David Cameron yesterday pledged to end the appeasement of Islamist extremism, and demanded that everyone in Britain show 'loyalty' to this country and its values.

In a stark warning, he said 2016 will be a 'test of our mettle' in the battle against radicals with a 'seething hatred' of this country and the West.

Issuing an uncompromising New Year message, the Prime Minister said anyone who walks the streets of Britain must subscribe to its values, including freedom and tolerance.

The UK and its people should 'revel' in their way of life, he said, as he promised to 'come down hard' on radicals.

Mr Cameron's words reflect his determination to confront what he calls the 'poisonous ideology' that has turned young Muslims against their country.

There is huge concern in government, the police and the security services about the radicalisation of young Britons online by Islamic State militants.

At least 700 Britons are thought to have travelled to fight for IS in Syria and Iraq, and around half have returned home.

His comments come ahead of the publication this year of a major review into how to promote integration in communities cut off from the rest of society.

The review, by civil servant Louise Casey, is expected to deliver some 'hard truths' to the Muslim community and lead to new policies.

In a video posted on the Downing Street website, Mr Cameron said extremism was a major social problem which he would 'take on'.

He has previously warned of the dangers posed by people in Britain who 'quietly condone' the extremist ideology of IS, without explicitly supporting violence.

Yesterday he reinforced his message that it was not only the gunmen and bombers who needed to be tackled.

'When our national security is threatened by a seething hatred of the West, one that turns people against their country and can even turn them into murderous extremists, I want us to be very clear: you will not defeat us,' said Mr Cameron.

'And we will not just confront the violence and the terror. We will take on their underlying, poisonous narrative of grievance and resentment.

In a video posted on the Downing Street website, Mr Cameron said extremism was a major social problem which he would 'take on'. He was speaking just two months after the ISIS terror attacks in Paris

'We will come down hard on those who create the conditions for that narrative to flourish. And we will have greater confidence in – indeed, we will revel in – our way of life. Because if you walk our streets, learn in our schools, benefit from our society, you sign up to our values: freedom; tolerance; responsibility; loyalty.'

The choice on extremism was whether to 'appease the extremists or take apart their ideology, piece by piece', he said.

Mr Cameron identified tackling extremism as one of the 'big challenges of our age', along with poverty, social mobility and housing. He said the country was in the middle of a 'turnaround decade' in which he wanted to transform society, having built a strong economy.

His words on extremism will cause dismay among many Muslims, who feel they are being unfairly singled out.

In a speech on extremism in July, Mr Cameron warned that young Muslims may be turning to terrorism because they grow up in insular communities and have no 'allegiance' to this country. He said some young people are vulnerable to swallowing 'poisonous' propaganda.

Last year Khalid Mahmood, the Labour MP for Birmingham Perry Barr, claimed that as many as 2,000 Britons are fighting alongside Islamist militants in Syria and Iraq – at least three times the official estimate.


More than 70% of doctors struck off in Britain are trained abroad: Alarm over patient safety despite promises to overhaul competency exams three years ago

Three out of four doctors struck off the medical register in 2015 were trained abroad – the same figure as three years ago – despite promises to toughen up competency tests, MailOnline can reveal.

In 2012 the General Medical Council (GMC) vowed to act when it emerged those who qualified overseas were five times more likely to be struck off than British graduates.

But new figures obtained via a MailOnline Freedom of Information request show little has changed, renewing fears that foreign doctors are not up to scratch.

The investigation will add weight to growing concerns about patient safety, which has again come under the spotlight in recent weeks following a controversial change in EU rules.

A new system will allow thousands of European doctors and nurses to come to the UK to work without vital checks being carried out on their qualification and safety.

Critics have said the change shows a 'scandalous disregard' for patients – and regulators warn they will be unable to protect the public from unsafe health workers.

Meanwhile, the Mail's FOI revealed that, among doctors already working in Britain, 273 of the 374 struck off for misconduct or incompetence in the past five years were foreign-trained, while 66 of the 85 removed from the medical register in 2014 received their medical degree overseas.

So far this year 48 of the 68 doctors who have been struck off were trained abroad. With only one-third of the 270,000 doctors on the medical register trained outside the UK, it means those from overseas are still five times more likely to be struck off than their British qualified counterparts.

Three years ago, after similar figures were revealed, the GMC promised to introduce measures to ensure foreign doctors faced a more rigorous assessment.

But MailOnline understands plans for a new, national licensing exam were put on hold when the row erupted over junior doctors’ contracts. There is no timeline on its introduction, although as an interim measure the GMC has said a tougher assessment for international medical graduates will be launched next year.

Nevertheless, the chairman of the British International Doctors Association (BIDA) was adamant such a measure would not solve the problem.

Dr Chandra Kanneganti instead pointed the finger at a ‘subconscious’ belief among patients that foreign doctors have had inferior training to their UK counterparts.

He told MailOnline: 'It's not racism, it's just the impression people have.

'Also, you often get many different doctors treating a patient, so if a mistake happens an Asian doctor may get singled out for complaint just because of this subconscious bias [that he or she is not as well qualified].'

Dr Kanneganti added: 'It's not about new doctors arriving in the UK because there aren't any coming. Between 2011 and 2014 the number of doctors coming from India alone dropped by 70 per cent because visa rules were made stricter.

Almost 11,000 European doctors and nurses were granted permission to work in the NHS last year and numbers are steadily rising because the health service is so understaffed.

But there are already concerns about existing EU rules which prevent them being tested on speaking English because this could impede their 'freedom of movement' rights.

Regulators can only request certificates stating EU workers have already passed English tests – whereas those applying from elsewhere in the world face rigorous exams.

Experts say the new passports – European Professional Cards – will jeopardise patient safety even further.

Rory Gray, whose 70-year-old father David died at the hands of Daniel Ubani, a German GP with poor English and limited medical knowledge, said: 'It is a scandalous disregard for people's lives... Instead of trying to strengthen the checks necessary to protect patients, the EU has made them even more weak and non-existent.'

Niall Dickson, of doctors' regulator the General Medical Council, said the new rules 'would further jeopardise our ability to protect patients'.

A GP in Romania, for example, will apply via Romanian authorities, who will have just two months to verify he genuinely has the training and experience he claims to have – and that this is sufficient for the UK.

They should check whether he has been suspended for poor care or other wrongdoing, but there is no legal requirement to this. If the deadline is missed, doctors and nurses will be issued a passport automatically.

'It's not people coming the last three years, it's those who have been practising here a while [who are being struck off].'

But despite suggesting the problem was linked to more experienced doctors rather than newly-trained ones, Dr Kanneganti insisted a regular competence test was not necessary.

He said: 'There are already procedures in place to identify knowledge gaps and address them so I don't think there needs to be blanket competency tests every ten years.'

The challenge for the BIDA and the GMC, Dr Kanneganti believes, is demonstrating to the public that foreign-trained doctors are as good as British doctors.

'We have the same skills and knowledge. It's about showing patients there is no difference in the treatment they receive, regardless of a doctor's race and colour,' he said.

BIDA’s vice-chairman agreed about ‘subconscious bias’ but Dr Umesh Prabhu, who trained in India, attributed it to ‘white decision-makers’ in the health service and branded the NHS ‘institutionally racist’.

‘There are other complex reasons, like poor training, cultural differences, communication problems, poor support for BME doctors at early stages and poor induction,’ he added.

When asked whether the figures showed the GMC had failed in its attempts to address the problem, Roger Goss of campaign group Patient Concern told MailOnline 'the figures speak for themselves'.

To practise in the UK, doctors currently have to pass exams testing their medical knowledge and English language skills.

But a study published last year concluded that the pass mark was set too low – and insisted that foreign doctors who pass are not up to the same standard as newly-trained doctors in Britain.

Researchers at University College London and the University of Cambridge found that international graduates got substantially lower marks in exams for would-be GPs and physicians.

Foreign doctors must pass an English language test and the GMC's Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) test, designed to ensure that overseas doctors demonstrate the same level of medical knowledge and clinical skills as UK graduates who have completed their first foundation training year.

Researchers said that raising the exam pass mark 'considerably' – by up to 20 per cent – would ensure both sets of doctors were of a similar standard.

But they also warned this would cut the pass rate and could cause a shortage of candidates for the NHS, which is heavily reliant on foreign medical staff.

Around one in three doctors registered with the GMC qualified in other countries, with 25 per cent obtaining their medical degree from outside the European Economic Area.

Earlier this year a study revealed that male doctors are two-and-a-half times more likely to be sued for medical negligence or face being struck off than their women peers.

It also showed the GMC had seen a 64 per cent increase in complaints between 2010 and 2013.

Niall Dickson, Chief Executive of the General Medical Council, said: ‘Doctors coming to the UK from overseas make a huge contribution to our health service and the vast majority provide safe and compassionate care for their patients.

'It's important that these doctors are given the support to enable them to adapt to UK practice and it is fair to say that in the past not enough has been done to help them.

'However in the small number of cases where doctors fall short of our standards it is right that we take action to protect patients, as these figures show that we do.

'We are strengthening the assessment which we set for international medical graduates before they practise in the UK.

'A new version of this test will be launched next year. Beyond this we want to introduce a standard assessment which both international and UK medical graduates will have to take before they treat patients in this country.

'We want to create a system in which all doctors meet the same standard, regardless of where they qualified.'

On the allegation of 'institutional racism' within the NHS, a Department of Health spokesperson said: 'One of the great strengths of the NHS workforce has always been its diversity.

'Any form of discrimination - including racism - is absolutely unacceptable.

'The NHS has strong mechanisms in place to address discrimination, and any staff who experience it should raise it immediately with their manager or trust's leadership team.'


Muslim teenagers set Christmas tree on fire in New Year’s Eve rampage in Brussels

A VIDEO of teenagers lighting a petrol bomb under a Christmas tree while yelling “Allahu Akbar” has sparked outrage in Belgium.

The incident occurred in a square near the Clemenceau metro station in Anderlecht, in the Belgian capital Brussels, on New Year’s Eve.

In the video, originally uploaded to Facebook and later posted to Liveleak, a group of people approach the tree before one throws an object underneath.

Seconds later an explosion can be heard, and the tree is quickly engulfed in flames. As they run away, the teens can be heard yelling “Allahu Akbar”.

The original uploader, named as Mohamed Amine in the video description, has since taken down his Facebook page.

Brussels residents took to Facebook to express their outrage. “Today they will set fire to a Christmas tree, tomorrow they will behead a Christian,” wrote one man.

“When they celebrate Ramadan nobody bothers then, so why do they attack the beliefs of others?” another said. “We will not stop celebrating the birth of Jesus.”

One man said he was “shocked by what I saw last night in Brussels”.

“Brussels is no longer a free city,” he wrote. “Anyone who has ever had the opportunity to travel abroad may realise that the situation in Brussels is neither normal nor tenable in the long-term.

“Brussels will die economically, socially and touristically, especially if no drastic policy is conducted within 10 years. I am very serious.”

One man described the attack as an “act of racism [and an] attack [on] our customs”, while another said: “The only solution is to return foreign offenders to their country with a good ass-kicking.”

It followed a second video taken on the same evening showing a gang of youths pushing a car down an escalator of the Clemenceau metro station.

The car crashed on its side while shocked riders watched from an adjoining escalator, as the youths run away swearing and yelling. No one was injured but train services were suspended for the rest of the evening

One of the youths was arrested, local news site HLN reported. It is not known whether it is same group of youths in both videos.

Brussels MP Jamal Ikazban hit out at the both the perpetrators and security services on his Facebook page, The Daily Mail reported. “I have a thought for the person who wakes up quietly this January 1 and finds out that his car is in the subway,” he said.

“It is not only not funny, but what is the most frightening it is to imagine that it is possible to take a car in the underground despite the warnings of level 3 AND 4, the presence of the military, the many cameras.

“Let us imagine for a moment that same car full of explosives in the subway and you will understand that we are entitled to ask ourselves the question of the effectiveness of all these new security measures.”

Belgium has been on high alert since the Paris attacks, and the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek in particular has been singled out as the terror capital of Europe and a breeding ground of extremists.


Muslim leaders including the Grand Mufti of Australia back fatwa against Islamic State

They're panicking about a backlash.  Other Islamic states -- particularly Saudi Arabia -- are also brutal. Why no condemnation of them?

Saudi Arabia, a Muslim country operating under Sharia law, whips rape VICTIMS and only gives them pardons if there's a major international outcry.  Saudi Arabia also amputates the hands of thieves.  Pakistan, another Muslim country, executes atheists under its notorious blasphemy laws.  The Iranian "Happy Video" dancers were sentenced to 91 lashes and prison time for recording their video.  In Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iran and Afghanistan homosexuality is an executable offense.

Australia's leading imams have backed a fatwa against the Islamic State terrorist group, warning that any support for the group contradicts Islamic teachings.

In a New Year message to the nation's Muslim community, the Grand Mufti of Australia together with prominent imams from NSW and Victoria have given their religious opinions and urged congregations, particularly the youth, to listen to their religious leaders.

The Grand Mufti, Dr Ibrahim Abu Mohammed, who is the leading representative of Australia's Sunni Islamic scholars,  said "most Islamic Legal Circles and Fatwa Boards have condemned ISIS, declaring that Islam is innocent of all these barbaric actions despite ISIS using the term Islamic in its name. The term 'Islamic State' has been usurped by ISIS," he said, using one of several acronyms for IS.

 "We stand with all organisations that have condemned ISIS and declared innocence from its inhumane actions.

"Locally we would like to bring to the attention of our youth, and those who lead them, that ISIS is a trick designed to prey on youth, either by their being killed or locked up in prison. We doubt the origins of ISIS because since it was established it has not done one thing for the benefit of Islam and Muslims. Rather its actions and barbaric acts have been against the way of God," he said.

"Therefore we warn our youth regarding the deceitful propaganda that ISIS uses through social media such as Facebook and Twitter. We remind our youth in Australia that social media and the medium of the internet cannot be a trusted means regarding religious knowledge."

Dr Mohamed's comments come as Muslim leaders around the world, including 70,000 clerics in India, have issued a fatwa against terrorist groups including ISIS and after the Australian National Imams Consultative Forum released a document, Australian Muslim perspective on some key contemporary concerns, addressing religious issues raised by IS's activities and recruitment.

The document examines dozens of issues from citizenship in Australia and Islam, to jihad, and makes statements backed by more than 20 Australian imams against slavery, suicide, and foreign fighting. It bluntly states that the so-called caliphate in Syria and Iraq, as proclaimed by IS is not legitimate and therefore Australian Muslims have no ­obligation to follow its dictates.

Sheikh Mohamadu Saleem, of the Board of Imams in Victoria, also had a New Year message for the community, saying that violent extremism is neither religious nor Islamic.

"We condemn and deplore ISIS's violent propaganda that is perpetrated against innocent civilians in the name of Islam as the prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: 'Harm is neither inflicted nor tolerated in Islam.'"

He said that "ISIS is trying to justify 'violence against innocent civilians' by interpreting texts of the Koran and hadiths, statements of Muhammad 'cherry-picked and out of context' to suit their violent actions. Majority of the leading scholars and Islamic organisations have vehemently denounced ISIS for its illegitimate and misleading propaganda." 

Sheikh Yahya Safi, the imam at Australia's biggest mosque in Lakemba, said: "I stand with the Islamic scholars from around the world who have condemned the actions of ISIS that contradict the teachings of Islam and I have stressed this on many occasions, especially in my Friday sermons."

Sheik Taj el-Din al-Hilali, the former grand mufti of Australia, has also warned that IS is like a trap that had tricked people and countries.

"Joining them is a type of madness that does not concord with the teachings of any religion. I warn the Muslim youths from all over the world against joining ISIS or supporting them in any way," Sheikh Hilali said.

"Joining such a group or supporting it contradicts the Islamic teachings 100 per cent, because this group is clear in breach of the Islamic teachings."



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


3 January, 2016

More multiculturalism in Britain
A man who was stabbed to death days after Christmas has been named as Dr Jeroen Ensink, a lecturer at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

Dr Ensink, 41, was found suffering from stab wounds following an incident in Hilldrop Crescent, Islington, north London, on December 28. He was pronounced dead at the scene shortly after 1.50pm.

His colleagues have paid tribute to the "popular" public health lecturer, saying he will be "greatly missed".

Professor Peter Piot, director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said: "We are deeply shocked and saddened by the death of Jeroen Ensink. "Jeroen was passionately committed to a simple cause: improving access to water and sanitation in countries where children continue to die needlessly due to the lack of these basic services."

Dr Ensink joined the school almost a decade ago, and at the time of his death he was was leading a large study in the Democratic Republic of Congo to understand how improvements in water supply could control and prevent cholera outbreaks.

Prof Piot added: "He was a natural educator and immensely popular with students in whom he invested much time and energy; he provided support and inspiration in equal measure and many of his students are now successful researchers and public health professionals in their own right.

"Jeroen will be greatly missed by all the staff and students who had the opportunity to know and work with him, and the legacy of his work will continue in Asia and Africa. "Our deepest condolences go to his family and friends."

Timchang Nandap, 22, of Pett Street, Woolwich, south-east London, has been charged with Dr Ensink's murder. He appeared at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court today, and was remanded in custody to appear at the Old Bailey on January 4, Scotland Yard said.


Comment from Gavin McInnes

A doctor is stabbed to death by an African Muslim refugee and the  BBC lists the murderer as, “a 22-year-old.”

They don’t say his real name, Timchang Nandap, until the very end of the article and they don’t say anything about his race, religion, or immigration status because they’re scared TMI might generate hatred. They think we can’t handle the truth but they’re the ones too scared to say what happened.

A quick Google and we find this video. Very likely him. Turns out he’s from Nigeria. They’re Muslim. This is shot from Nigeria in 2014 so he must have just come over.

There’s a huge story here about charity and immigration and at the very least, an interesting juxtaposition but the BBC is a neutered robot who gives you a tenth of the news while cowering behind a giant wall of pussified media rules.

Why did Britain take this family in?


Karma: Black Lives Matter Thug Killed in Ironic Twist

by Kevin Jackson (who is black)

Karma is a bitch, and karma returned on to Daquan Westbrook.

You may not recognize the name, but Westbrook is an Obama-sanctioned black thug plaguing America. He is also a noted black racist.

The aspiring rapper who goes by the Twitter handle @Donkey_cartel (yes, I’m sure he was indeed a Democrat) once tweeted:

“Black is BACK White is WACK Wack a Cracker #2015,”

A follow up tweet later in December of last year read:

“Im Racist I Don’t Like White People 100?

Westbrook, 18, was the teen shot in the North Carolina mall by mall security and off-duty police officer.

According to his mother, Sheana Shirley told WSOC her son was shopping for her a Christmas present. He had just asked his mother her shoe size, when he bumped into a rival gang member who had shot his older brother in the head, according to Shirley.

This is just another reminder that #BlackLivesMatter, as one young black man wanted to shoot another young black man who had shot another young black man.

The irony? It was a white cop who put the whole thing to rest. And as one report put it, “…thankfully there were lots of witnesses.” In other words, black idiots have no reason to protest the cop shooting this black thug, since there were too many white folks who can cry foul!

I’m sure somebody misses this racist piece of crap, but not me. I’m sick of him and the people who glorify his lifestyle. But you can bet that Liberals will try to make him a martyr. After all, he was Christmas shopping for his mother. So what he was packing heat, and then decided to put many people in harm’s way, by trying to shoot a man at the mall, right?

Americans are tired of hearing the excuses for bad behavior; thugocracy. It’s time the good guys win, and in this case, America wins. A man who could be this callous is a menace to society.


It's time to grow up and end gender politics, Jane Fynes-Clinton writes

A good Australian article from 2012:

GENERALISATIONS about either sex, particularly when used in the political debate, are demeaning to all and cloud the real issues.

WE WOULD expect our children to behave better. If the kiddies picked on one another in such a way, right-minded parents would scold them, explaining that we are progressive and civilised and this is simply not an acceptable way to behave.

Reasonable people don't call one another names just for being boys or girls - surely?

But when the heat is on, at times when we should be most adult, too many resort to name-calling and using undertones that are built around gender even when it is not appropriate to do so.

Queensland Premier Campbell Newman did it on Tuesday at the Budget Estimates hearing. Irritated at pestering questions by Opposition Leader Annastacia Palaszczuk, he suggested she was "being cute".

A look at Prime Minister Julia Gillard's Facebook page reveals the much-publicised hammering she got in a question-and-answer session earlier in the week was not isolated.

References early yesterday morning included one poster wanting the PM to make them dinner; and another for her to get back on her broomstick. And many other such predictable, gender-based barbs.

Drunken footballers on "mad Monday" called out lewd sexual things. And whether or not the comments were directed at female journalists, and an inquiry found they were not, they were still sexist and demeaning.

Women are no better. They can be as savagely sexist and poisonous as men. They generalise about men being emotionally unavailable, domestically lazy and obsessed with sex.

But gender generalisations are holding us all back and often clouding the real issues that are in urgent need of exploration.

While some men will say the Canterbury Bulldogs' rugby league team carry-on was "just what footy blokes do", many abhor the lack of respect it showed.

And many women are shocked that men are looked at with suspicion when they are alone around small children and reject generalisations about them being knuckle-draggers or meatheads.

We should never make general judgments about the opposite gender by the behaviour of its worst examples.

And that is the point - while evidence abounds of the most basic of gender stereotypes being wheeled out and put on display increasingly regularly lately, not all men are the same and neither are all women.

There is talk that Newman and federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott are "not liked by women", as if women are an indivisible mass with one opinion, one mind and one vote.

It is as if women seek the most female-friendly candidate and vote for them, without thought on policy or principle.

The situation is no more advanced in the US, with the same debate going on, but with different players. The man who wants Barack Obama's job, Mitt Romney, is cast as not being popular with women, but is blessed with a wife who will speak up for him and has proved popular with the public (sound familiar?).

Isn't it all a bit primitive? Doesn't that broad grouping demean women in particular and society in general?

The key to understanding society is not, and has never been, as simple as herding women or men together and stereotyping them. The spectrum of views and interests in each gender is increasingly broad and varied.

But that seems forgotten in debates where generalisations are convenient.

We do not help the issue by cutting the cloth to fit the model. We accept sexist jokes from, say, a group of girlfriends, but not from our boss.

Man and women reach for and use the sexist button when it suits us - not unlike Labor, which has relentlessly targeted Abbott over having a so-called problem with women, but then on Tuesday baulked at giving the disgraced and disgraceful texter Peter Slipper the boot.

If the Alan Jones drama this week taught us anything, it's that bad behaviour is not sexist just because it involves people of a different gender.

Insensitivity and nasty comments, such as those Jones made about Gillard and her dad, are just rude. In his case, gender does not come into it, but in that case was an obvious weapon to reach for.

If sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, framing all arguments in terms of gender is the basest form of understanding.

So, excluding Alan Jones and most of the Federal Parliament, let's get serious about developing a vestige of civility, put down the gender card and get on with growing up.

This is no sandpit and we are no longer little boys and girls.


How Islam is Psychologically Toxic

"A traditional Islamic upbringing resembles classical brainwashing methods"

Some people object to even talking about “Muslims” or “Muslim culture” as a group, because doing so, they claim, deindividualizes and stereotypes them. “Stop making it about ‘us’ versus ‘them,’” a few readers of this column complain.

However, it’s an observed fact that Muslims, as a group, are responsible for nearly all of the organized, ideologically based violence in today’s world. As a movement, they are the ones who have set the terms of “us” versus “them.” Their organized movement faces little or no moderate opposition, from within, against the extremists who call for worldwide murder and/or enslavement of anyone who disagrees. Like it or not, that’s what we’re dealing with in the real world today.

If we wish to survive in life as we know it, we have to understand why this is. If we censor certain thoughts or ideas as politically incorrect or otherwise insensitive, and therefore outside the realm of intellectual consideration, then we run the risk of not understanding what we’re confronting, nor why we’re confronting it.  How rational is that? How “liberal,” enlightened or safe is that?

Consider the following, from “How Islam Creates Sociopaths” [israelnationalnews.com 10/4/15], an interesting study done by Danish psychologist Nicolai Sennels:

"Nobody is born a mass murderer, a rapist or a violent criminal. So what is it in the Muslim culture that influences their children in a way that makes so relatively many Muslims harm other people?"

Kudos to Sennels for even asking the question. Because things have reached a point in our so-called quest for knowledge that certain questions might never be asked, much less explored.

The psychology field should be at the forefront of launching such an investigation into the social and psychological dynamics of Islam; instead, at psychologytoday.com and elsewhere, we’re greeted with diatribes against political candidate Ben Carson for suggesting that Islam might not be the best ideology for world peace.

They call for diversity and multiculturalism, without any attempt to grasp what gives rise to all these beheadings, skyscraper-topplings, toddler-bomb-strappings, hostage-takings and everything else Islamic we have been reading about for decades now. Same old stale, unhelpful and anti-intellectual garbage.

To understand something, especially something involved in the creation of evil, is to risk offending it. Evil and irrational people are usually quite cranky. You risk offending Nazis by trying to understand what animates such an ideology. The same applies to Islam. If you don’t like this fact, then you’re due to get over it.

Sennels goes on:

"As a psychologist in a Danish youth prison, I had a unique chance to study the mentality of Muslims. 70 percent of youth offenders in Denmark have a Muslim background. I was able to compare them with non-Muslim clients from the same age group with more or less the same social background. I came to the conclusion that Islam and Muslim culture have certain psychological mechanisms that harm people’s development and increase criminal behavior."

Word of caution: People are, in the end, determined by their thoughts and ideas. It’s thoughts and ideas that determine how people feel, act, and make choices, not their cultures.

Circumstances, including culture, are important, but not the final and determining factor. We’re all exposed to certain ideas via parents, family, schools, and other cultural institutions or media; it’s whether or why we accept those ideas, that counts.

Brainwashing people into believing or doing things against their own human nature — such as hating or even killing innocents they do not even know — is traditionally done by combining two things: pain and repetition. The conscious infliction of psychological and physical suffering breaks down the person’s resistance to the constantly repeated message.

Totalitarian regimes use this method to reform political dissidents. Armies in less civilized countries use it to create ruthless soldiers, and religious sects all over the world use it to fanaticize their followers.

This is key. Islam promotes and even requires the existence of totalitarian governments to enforce the ideology. The totalitarian government is part of the ideology. These governments are able to enforce rules at gunpoint.

Imagine a conservative Christian government controlling all media and personal behavior in America. You could be jailed or murdered for choosing to have an abortion, for using birth control, for having sex outside of marriage or for engaging in homosexual sex. That, and much more, is what Muslims are up against. Yet they are not total victims. While not all Muslims may support everything about their totalitarian governments, those totalitarian governments are based on the religion to which the vast majority of them subscribe. In a very real sense, they asked for it.

Muslim culture [Sennels continues] simply does not have the same degree of understanding of human development as in civilized societies, and physical pain and threats are therefore often the preferred tool to raise children. This is why so many Muslim girls grow up to accept violence in their marriages, and why Muslim boys grow up to learn that violence is acceptable. And it is the main reason why nine out of ten children removed from their parents by authorities in Copenhagen are from immigrant families. The Muslim tradition of using pain and intimidation as part of disciplining children is also widely used in Muslim schools — also in the West.

The basic issue here is reason. All parents must set limits on their children and keep them from running free or unrestrained. It’s a question of degree, but also of philosophy. If your basic approach is reason-oriented, you set limits on children so they will grow up into thinking, independent and self-responsible adults with minds of their own. Intellectual and psychological independence is the goal of reason-based parenting; indoctrination is the goal of dogmatic and authoritarian parenting, and there is nothing more dogmatic or authoritarian on earth, at present, than Islam.

According to this study, reason is obviously not the dominant idea in Islamic cultures. In fact, reason does not appear to be present at all. It’s not that Muslim parents are basically reason-oriented with conservative tendencies; it’s that brutality and force are all they know, or perhaps what they believe is ideal.

Given how most parents in such cultures treat and view their own children, what makes us think there’s any hope for them viewing the children of “infidels” in lands their religion has trained them to hate any more positively? Those people prattling on about, “Stop making it about us versus them,” are completely (and I think willfully) ignorant of the fact that the dominant majority of people in such cultures have already made it about “us versus them.”

If the totalitarian regimes ruling places like Iran did not have the support of most of the people, that would be one thing. Free countries would have the option of waiting out the dictatorship, and even providing underground support to pro-freedom elements who existed in that country. While such rebellious or even more secular elements undoubtedly exist in Iran, they have not been strong enough to overcome the totalitarian regime, most likely because the widespread support for them has not been there. Our own American government, particularly since the Obama administration, who actually sides with the totalitarian regime over and above any rebellious elements, is partly to blame as well.

Not only does a traditional Islamic upbringing resemble classical brainwashing methods, but also, the culture it generates cultivates psychological characteristics that further enable and increase violent behavior.

Starting with Islamic youth, Sennels boils it down to four mental factors enabling the cause of aggression and violence. These factors are anger;  lack of self-confidence;  no sense of responsibility for oneself; and  intolerance.

Anger and lack of self-responsibility are key. These two factors, in turn, fuel the lack of self-confidence and tolerance which follow in most Islamic cultures.

Take anger. Sennels makes a fascinating and insightful point:

"When it comes to anger, Western societies widely agree that it is a sign of weakness. Uncontrolled explosions of this unpleasant feeling are maybe the fastest way of losing face, especially in Northern countries, and though angry people may be feared, they are never respected. In Muslim culture, anger is much more accepted, and being able to intimidate people is seen as strength and source of social status".

In other words, Islamic children grow up with the idea that anger is a show of strength. Most Americans come from the opposite perspective, as Sennels says. As a result, they mistakenly conclude that, “If we just show our strength by not being angry, this will calm the Muslims down.” This tactic will usually work when dealing with individuals or groups where the dominant attitude about anger is the same. But not with people in Islamic cultures, because the dominant attitudes in that group are that anger is strength, not weakness. When, for reasons of political correctness, moral cowardice, misplaced pacifism or whatever else, we respond to their violence with calm, rational “turn the other cheek” sorts of measures, they feel contempt and no respect whatsoever for us– thereby leading them to strike out more.

Consider self-responsibility. Sennels states,

"…here the psychological phenomenon “locus of control” plays a major role. People raised by Western standards generally have an inner locus of control, meaning that they experience their lives as governed by inner factors, such as one’s own choices, world view, ways of handling emotions and situations, etc. Muslims are raised to experience their lives as being controlled from the outside".

It’s impossible to exaggerate what a profound difference such an attitude makes. That’s why Bush’s Iraq war was, in the end, such a miserable failure. We’re taking it for granted that all human beings think, act and feel the same way. “If we only liberate them, they will exercise self-initiative, thinking and acting for themselves.” Not everyone wants to do this, or even believes it’s an option.

With regard to Islam, these attitudes are the precise opposite of everything the religion and culture stands for. You’d have to be a total and complete turncoat against Islam to have any sympathy for such an ideal. Yet all of our leaders – left and right – take it for granted that eventually it will all work out. In the meantime, the violence and danger only grows, as ISIS spreads its influence.

Keep in mind that ISIS is not merely a military movement. It’s at root an ideological and psychological one. It appeals to the grass roots. ISIS exists and grows because it appeals to the hearts and minds of Muslim people everywhere. Its attitudes, ideals and values are the polar opposite of everything that have always been the dominant attitudes in America – self-control, self-responsibility, individualism. These values require freedom, not subservience.

When most Muslims are confronted with freedom, it makes them realize that what you’re really talking about are self-control, reason, independence and individualism. These frighten them on a level most of us will never comprehend. And, because of their cultural attitudes about violence, it sends them into a rage, as a show of strength against their own inner fear. ISIS stands ready and waiting, particularly with younger people, to convert that rage into political and military action on a scale that—left free to grow—could make Nazi Germany look like a day at the beach.

Keep in mind that at the root of most rage and hatred is the emotion of fear. People who have internalized the values and beliefs dominant in Islamic culture hate rationality, capitalism, Westernism and science precisely because they are effective.

The very existence of our advanced, rational system of life rains on their whole mystical, deterministic and fatalistic world view. The result is fear, then rage, then militant action (because angry action is viewed as strength). That explains why advocates of Islam are not merely content to counterattack Americans for their presence in the Middle East; they are determined to go on the offensive, destroy America, and decimate all Western values, at all costs. That’s what Islamic totalitarianism is all about, according to every single word and action of its movement’s representatives.

I agree with people who say that in order to defeat an enemy like militant Islam, we first have to understand it. But the more we look honestly and objectively at what Islam is really about –in actual cultural practice, and in psychological characteristics, not only theoretical ideology—the more we’re forced to confront an ideology more at odds with any version of Americanism/ freedom/ secular individualism than has ever existed. As bad as Nazism and Communism were, militant Islam may be the ultimate and complete inversion of all that made America what it was, and (though starting to fade) still essentially is. They’re forcing us to come to terms with our values and ideals by attempting to systematically destroy them.

Like it or not, Islam is making it about “us” versus “them.” They’re forcing us to decide: Do you really want to live as happy, free, and always materially progressing on earth? Or do you want to denounce those values altogether?

You’re either with them or against them. That’s not me saying it; they are saying it. Those are the terms they have set, not those of us who disagree with them.

Remember that as events continue to play out in the months and years to come. Understand what you’re up against; otherwise it will devour you.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


2 January, 2016

Are Australians still favorably disposed towards multiculturalism despite Muslim antics?

The article below relies a lot on a report from the Scanlon Foundation, a do-gooder outfit, so may not be entirely trustworthy.  In particular, the question asked to assess attitude to immigrants was pretty dumb:  "Accepting immigrants from many different countries makes Australia stronger".  The obvious response is "Which countries?".  Syria, Iran, Iraq?

I personally would agree that immigration from East Asia and the various countries of Europe has been beneficial but I can see no similar benefit of immigration from fanatically Muslim lands or from crime-riddled African lands.  I very much doubt that I am alone in that.  All immigrants are not the same, hard to acknowledge though that may be to the Left

I also note that the survey was done the lazy way -- over the telephone.  Such surveys are widely used but can be wildly inaccurate.  In my own survey research I usually trudged from door to door to ask my questions. I believe I may be the only academic who has ever done so. Academics much prefer armchairs to dusty shoes. So again, I rather doubt the results.  They could well be much too high

It is however true that Australians tend to be a relaxed and easy-going people so they may well be more accepting of immigrants than some others

Australia has had three terrorist attacks over the past year and this month former prime minister Tony Abbott preached to the Muslim world that it must become “enlightened”. Yet the country sticks out from others fighting Islamist extremism as most of its population strongly support multiculturalism and legal immigration.

Neil El-Kadomi, Parramatta Mosque chairman, says the local non-Muslim community have largely remained supportive. A recent protest by far-right group Reclaim Australia outside the mosque drew just a handful of protesters. “It shows just what a small minority this is,” he says. “We have integrated well into the community.”

A recent survey by the Scanlon Foundation shows 86 per cent of people say multiculturalism has been “good for Australia”, while 67 per cent say immigration has “made the country stronger” — the highest level recorded since the survey was introduced in 2007.

[That's a barefaced lie.  According to Table 9 in the Scanlon report, it was higher in 2009 and 2014.  Pesky of me to look up the original figures, isn't it?  I have always found that fun]

“This is the reverse of the trend you see in Europe now, where the National Front and Ukip are gaining sizeable support,” says Andrew Markus, a professor at Monash University in Victoria.

It is not hard to see why Australia is more accepting of different cultures. A quarter of the country’s 23m population were born overseas, which makes it one of the world’s most multicultural nations, with more than double the proportion of immigrants than either the UK or Germany.

“Australians accept they are a new country made up of immigrants, whereas Europe with its older cultures does not,” says Prof Markus.

He says in Europe multiculturalism has been interpreted by political leaders as immigrant groups retaining their own cultures and rejecting integration. In Australia it is now understood to mean respect for different cultures while integrating into mainstream society, says Prof Markus.

It was not always this way. Australia introduced its “White Australia” policy at the turn of the 20th century to deter an increasing flow of migrants from Asia. This policy was gradually dismantled following the second world war, and in 1975 the government under Gough Whitlam passed the race discrimination act, which outlawed racially based selection for migrants.
chart: foreign-born population

Since then there has been sporadic racial unrest such as the 2005 Cronulla riots, when clashes broke out between members of the Middle Eastern community and white Australians. More recently, the far-right group Reclaim Australia has held demonstrations to campaign against what it dubs “Islam’s radicals”. But there is little sign of any far-right political party gaining the type of electoral support that would give it real influence.

Australia’s tight control of its borders and its role as colony rather than a colonial power are two underlying reasons why support for immigration remains high, according to some experts.

Tim Soutphommasane, Australia’s racial discrimination commissioner, says the country benefits from being an island continent that has a planned intake of migrants, most of whom are skilled.

“You don’t have the problem here of migrants and their descendants feeling estranged from the country,” he says.

Australia’s strong economy, which has grown for 24 consecutive years, is another positive factor. Unemployment remains low at less than 6 per cent and there are fewer of the immigrant ghettos that blight parts of France and the UK.

“We don’t have the level of structural disadvantage attached to ethnicity that you see in some other countries,” says Kevin Dunn, professor of human geography and urban studies at Western Sydney University .

But he warns this positive picture of a multicultural life in Australia cannot be taken for granted. Muslims experience discrimination at about three times the rate of other Australians, according to a recent study Prof Dunn oversaw, and people are emboldened to perform racist actions due to terrorist events and divisive media and political commentary.

“It is the political environment that determines whether racism flourishes,” says Prof Dunn. “This is the biggest risk to multiculturalism.”


Obama behind worsening behavior by blacks and others

Events over the weekend make a reasonable person wonder whether the constant fraying of the social contract has finally created a tear that is rapidly becoming irreparable.

In malls across the country, thousands of people congregated, not for the purposes of shopping, going to a movie or simply enjoying each other’s company, but instead with the goal of disrupting people from using the already hard pressed brick and mortar stores for their intended purpose.

At Minneapolis’ Mall of America, the radical Black Lives Matter group even went so far as to feint a protest so there would be a heavy police presence, allowing them to shut down part of the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport during the height of the Christmas travel season.  Beyond the obvious problem that their actions caused hundreds of people to miss their flights home, they deliberately placed thousands at an additional risk of a terrorist attack due to distracted security.mall of america protest 2014

Mall disruptions also were reported in New Jersey, Kentucky and elsewhere around the country.  When combined with flash mob convenience store robberies and random assaults by mobs playing the “knockout game”, it would be hard to not notice that something is badly amiss.

Even our assumed driving rules are under attack.  On the Washington, D.C. Beltway, a group of approximately fifty motorcyclists caused a delay as they uniformly slowed down across all the lanes bringing traffic to a standstill. As they got moving again, they aggressively cut cars off from passing, and even went so far as to drive north bound up the south bound lanes.  There did not appear to be any political or other message in the motorcycle foolishness, but instead the mass act of civil disobedience seems to have been done just because they could. However, it reveals the fragility of our common understanding about the need to follow the rules.

While it is usually dangerous to draw broad societal assumptions based upon flash mobs at malls, roadways or even political protests blocking bridges, it is safe to note that these occurrences are becoming significantly more frequent.

And it is fair to tie this civil disobedience to President Obama’s continued attack on the law as a whole.  When the President doesn’t enforce the nation’s immigration laws, people naturally believe that if the law isn’t going to be enforced then it is null and void, and the fabric of our nation’s social contract is torn.

When Obama nullifies sentencing decisions for thousands of drug dealers and others, releasing them back into their former neighborhoods it sends a message that the system was wrong and the fabric tears a little more.

When Democrats in Congress urge Obama to use his pen and phone to circumvent Congress, they send a powerful message to their constituents that the rule of law doesn’t matter, and the tear grows.

And when the left and some on the right make those who seek to enforce the laws, targets for attack and murder, creating a schism of fear between the protector and the protected, the fabric itself becomes unrecognizable.

The social fabric that binds America together as one has always been fragile, and to complete the fundamental transformation that Obama strives to achieve, it must be torn asunder from top to bottom in a wholesale surrender of the current rule of law to another set of laws composed not through consent, compromise and agreement, but instead through forced acquiescence.

America should not worry about getting on a slippery slope away from rule by the consent of the governed, because we are already half-way down the slide and few have noticed.

As more and more people read the news and wonder what is happening to their country thinking that the craziness that seems to ooze from our government is an anomaly rather than the forced new normal under Obama, a ballot box response erupts if there is a trusted alternative.

Something to think about as we head into the presidential primary season.


What a politically incorrect interrogation program achieved

This post is originally from 2010 but the facts are still not widely known

    "As President George W. Bush's top speech writer, Marc Thiessen was provided unique access to the CIA program used in interrogating top Al Qaeda terrorists, including the mastermind of the 9/11 attack, Khalid Sheikh Mohammad (KSM)

    Now, his riveting new book, "Courting Disaster", How the CIA Kept America Safe (Regnery), has been published. Here is an excerpt from "Courting Disaster": "Just before dawn on March 1, 2003, two dozen heavily armed Pakistani tactical assault forces move in and surround a safe house in Rawalpindi. A few hours earlier they had received a text message from an informant inside the house. It read: "I am with KSM."

    Bursting in, they find the disheveled mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, in his bedroom. He is taken into custody. In the safe house, they find a treasure trove of computers, documents, cell phones and other valuable "pocket litter."

    Once in custody, KSM is defiant. He refuses to answer questions, informing his captors that he will tell them everything when he gets to America and sees his lawyer. But KSM is not taken to America to see a lawyer Instead he is taken to a secret CIA "black site" in an undisclosed location.

    Upon arrival, KSM finds himself in the complete control of Americans. He does not know where he is, how long he will be there, or what his fate will be.

    Despite his circumstances, KSM still refuses to talk. He spews contempt at his interrogators, telling them Americans are weak, lack resilience, and are unable to do what is necessary to prevent the terrorists from succeeding in their goals. He has trained to resist interrogation. When he is asked for information about future attacks, he tells his questioners scornfully: "Soon, you will know."

    It becomes clear he will not reveal the information using traditional interrogation techniques. So he undergoes a series of "enhanced interrogation techniques" approved for use only on the most high-value detainees. The techniques include waterboarding.

    His resistance is described by one senior American official as "superhuman." Eventually, however, the techniques work, and KSM becomes cooperative-for reasons that will be described later in this book.

    He begins telling his CIA de-briefers about active al Qaeda plots to launch attacks against the United States and other Western targets. He holds classes for CIA officials, using a chalkboard to draw a picture of al Qaeda's operating structure, financing, communications, and logistics. He identifies al Qaeda travel routes and safe havens, and helps intelligence officers make sense of documents and computer records seized in terrorist raids. He identifies voices in intercepted telephone calls, and helps officials understand the meaning of coded terrorist communications. He provides information that helps our intelligence community capture other high-ranking terrorists,

    KSM's questioning, and that of other captured terrorists, produces more than 6,000 intelligence reports, which are shared across the intelligence community, as well as with our allies across the world.

    In one of these reports, KSM describes in detail the revisions he made to his failed 1994-1995 plan known as the "Bojinka plot" to blow up a dozen airplanes carrying some 4,000 passengers over the Pacific Ocean.

    Years later, an observant CIA officer notices the activities of a cell being followed by British authorities appear to match KSM's description of his plans for a Bojinka-style attack.

    In an operation that involves unprecedented intelligence cooperation between our countries, British officials proceed to unravel the plot.

    On the night of Aug. 9, 2006 they launch a series of raids in a northeast London suburb that lead to the arrest of two dozen al Qaeda terrorist suspects. They find a USB thumb-drive in the pocket of one of the men with security details for Heathrow airport, and information on seven Trans-Atlantic flights that were scheduled to take off within hours of each other:

    * United Airlines Flight 931 to San Francisco departing at 2:15 p.M.;

    * Air Canada Flight 849 to Toronto departing at 3:00 p.M.;

    * Air Canada Flight 865 to Montreal departing at 3:15 p.M.;
    * United Airlines Flight 959 to Chicago departing at 3:40 p.M.;

    * United Airlines Flight 925 to Washington departing at 4:20 p.M.;

    * American Airlines Flight 131 to New York departing at 4:35 p.M.;

    * American Airlines Flight 91 to Chicago departing at 4:50 p.M.

    They seize bomb-making equipment and hydrogen peroxide to make liquid explosives. And they find the chilling martyrdom videos the suicide bombers had prepared."

    Today, if you asked an average person on the street what they know about the 2006 airlines plot, most would not be able to tell you much.

    Few Americans are aware of the fact al Qaeda had planned to mark the fifth anniversary of 9/11 with an attack of similar scope and magnitude. And still fewer realize the terrorists' true intentions in this plot were uncovered thanks to critical information obtained through the interrogation of the man who conceived it: Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

    This is only one of the many attacks stopped with the help of the CIA interrogation program established by the Bush Administration in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

    In addition to helping break up these specific terrorist cells and plots, CIA questioning provided our intelligence community with an unparalleled body of information about al Qaeda Until the program was temporarily suspended in 2006, intelligence officials say, well over half of the information our government had about al Qaeda-how it operates, how it moves money, how it communicates, how it recruits operatives, how it picks targets, how it plans and carries out attacks-came from the interrogation of terrorists in CIA custody.

    Former CIA Director George Tenet has declared: "I know this program has saved lives. I know we've disrupted plots. I know this program alone is worth more than what the FBI, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the National Security Agency put together have been able to tell us." Former CIA Director Mike Hayden has said: "The facts of the case are that the use of these techniques against these terrorists made us safer. It really did work."

    Even Barack Obama's Director of National Intelligence, Dennis Blair, has acknowledged: "High-value information came from interrogations in which those methods were used and provided a deeper understanding of the al Qaeda organization that was attacking this country." Leon Panetta, Obama's CIA Director, has said: "Important information was gathered from these detainees. It provided information that was acted upon.

    John Brennan, Obama's Homeland Security Advisor, when asked in an interview if enhanced-interrogation techniques were necessary to keep America safe, replied : "Would the U. S. be handicapped if the CIA was not, in fact, able to carry out these types of detention and debriefing activities? I would say yes."

    On Jan. 22, 2009, President Obama issued Executive Order 13491, closing the CIA program and directing that, henceforth, all interrogations by U. S. personnel must follow the techniques contained in the Army Field Manual.

    The morning of the announcement, Mike Hayden was still in his post as CIA Director, He called White House Counsel Greg Craig and told him bluntly: "You didn't ask, but this is the CIA officially non-concurring". The president went ahead anyway, over ruling the objections of the agency.

    A few months later, on April 16, 2009, President Obama ordered the release of four Justice Department memos that described in detail the techniques used to interrogate KSM and other high-value terrorists. This time, not just Hayden (who was now retired) but five CIA directors -including Obama's own director, Leon Panetta objected. George Tenet called to urge against the memos' release. So did Porter Goss. So did John Deutch. Hayden says: "You had CIA directors in a continuous unbroken stream to 1995 calling saying, 'Don't do this.'"

    In addition to objections from the men who led the agency for a collective 14 years, the President also heard objections from the agency's covert field operatives. A few weeks earlier, Panetta had arranged for the eight top officials of the Clandestine Service to meet with the President. It was highly unusual for these clandestine officers to visit the Oval Office, and they used the opportunity to warn the President that releasing the memos would put agency operatives at risk. The President reportedly listened respectfully-and then ignored their advice.

    With these actions, Barack Obama arguably did more damage to America's national security in his first 100 days of office than any President in American history.


How the language police are perverting liberalism

Jonathan Chait below seems to think you can have real liberalism on the Left.  All he does, however, is provide an enchiridion of that not being so

Around 2 a.m. on December 12, four students approached the apartment of Omar Mahmood, a Muslim student at the University of Michigan, who had recently published a column in a school newspaper about his perspective as a minority on campus. The students, who were recorded on a building surveillance camera wearing baggy hooded sweatshirts to hide their identity, littered Mahmood’s doorway with copies of his column, scrawled with messages like “You scum embarrass us,” “Shut the fuck up,” and “DO YOU EVEN GO HERE?! LEAVE!!” They posted a picture of a demon and splattered eggs.

This might appear to be the sort of episode that would stoke the moral conscience of students on a progressive campus like Ann Arbor, and it was quickly agreed that an act of biased intimidation had taken place. But Mahmood was widely seen as the perpetrator rather than the victim. His column, published in the school’s conservative newspaper, had spoofed the culture of taking offense that pervades the campus. Mahmood satirically pretended to denounce “a white cis-gendered hetero upper-class man” who offered to help him up when he slipped, leading him to denounce “our barbaric attitude toward people of left-handydnyss.” The gentle tone of his mockery was closer to Charlie Brown than to Charlie Hebdo.

The Michigan Daily, where Mahmood also worked as a columnist and film critic, objected to the placement of his column in the conservative paper but hardly wanted his satirical column in its own pages. Mahmood later said that he was told by the editor that his column had created a “hostile environment,” in which at least one Daily staffer felt threatened, and that he must write a letter of apology to the staff. When he refused, the Daily fired him, and the subsequent vandalism of his apartment served to confirm his status as thought-criminal.

The episode would not have shocked anybody familiar with the campus scene from two decades earlier. In 1992, an episode along somewhat analogous lines took place, also in Ann Arbor. In this case, the offending party was the feminist videographer Carol Jacobsen, who had produced an exhibition documenting the lives of sex workers. The exhibition’s subjects presented their profession as a form of self-empowerment, a position that ran headlong against the theories of Catharine MacKinnon, a law professor at the university who had gained national renown for her radical feminist critique of the First Amendment as a tool of male privilege. MacKinnon’s beliefs nestled closely with an academic movement that was then being described, by its advocates as well as its critics, as “political correctness.” Michigan had already responded to the demands of pro-p.c. activists by imposing a campuswide speech code purporting to restrict all manner of discriminatory speech, only for it to be struck down as a First Amendment violation in federal court.

In Ann Arbor, MacKinnon had attracted a loyal following of students, many of whom copied her method of argument. The pro-MacKinnon students, upset over the display of pornographic video clips, descended upon Jacobsen’s exhibit and confiscated a videotape. There were speakers visiting campus for a conference on prostitution, and the video posed “a threat to their safety,” the students insisted.

This was the same inversion of victim and victimizer at work last December. In both cases, the threat was deemed not the angry mobs out to crush opposing ideas, but the ideas themselves. The theory animating both attacks turns out to be a durable one, with deep roots in the political left.
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Secret Confessions of the Anti-Anti-P.C. Movement

The recent mass murder of the staff members of Charlie Hebdo in Paris was met with immediate and unreserved fury and grief across the full range of the American political system. But while outrage at the violent act briefly united our generally quarrelsome political culture, the quarreling quickly resumed over deeper fissures. Were the slain satirists martyrs at the hands of religious fanaticism, or bullying spokesmen of privilege? Can the offensiveness of an idea be determined objectively, or only by recourse to the identity of the person taking offense? On Twitter, “Je Suis Charlie,” a slogan heralding free speech, was briefly one of the most popular news hashtags in history. But soon came the reactions (“Je Ne Suis Pas Charlie”) from those on the left accusing the newspaper of racism and those on the right identifying the cartoons as hate speech. Many media companies, including the New York Times, have declined to publish the cartoons the terrorists deemed offensive, a stance that has attracted strident criticism from some readers. These sudden, dramatic expressions of anguish against insensitivity and oversensitivity come at a moment when large segments of American culture have convulsed into censoriousness.

After political correctness burst onto the academic scene in the late ’80s and early ’90s, it went into a long remission. Now it has returned. Some of its expressions have a familiar tint, like the protesting of even mildly controversial speakers on college campuses. You may remember when 6,000 people at the University of California–Berkeley signed a petition last year to stop a commencement address by Bill Maher, who has criticized Islam (along with nearly all the other major world religions). Or when protesters at Smith College demanded the cancellation of a commencement address by Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, blaming the organization for “imperialist and patriarchal systems that oppress and abuse women worldwide.” Also last year, Rutgers protesters scared away Condoleezza Rice; others at Brandeis blocked Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a women’s-rights champion who is also a staunch critic of Islam; and those at Haverford successfully protested ­former Berkeley chancellor Robert Birgeneau, who was disqualified by an episode in which the school’s police used force against Occupy protesters.

At a growing number of campuses, professors now attach “trigger warnings” to texts that may upset students, and there is a campaign to eradicate “microaggressions,” or small social slights that might cause searing trauma. These newly fashionable terms merely repackage a central tenet of the first p.c. movement: that people should be expected to treat even faintly unpleasant ideas or behaviors as full-scale offenses. Stanford recently canceled a performance of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson after protests by Native American students. UCLA students staged a sit-in to protest microaggressions such as when a professor corrected a student’s decision to spell the word indigenous with an uppercase I — one example of many “perceived grammatical choices that in actuality reflect ideologies.” A theater group at Mount Holyoke College recently announced it would no longer put on The Vagina Monologues in part because the material excludes women without vaginas. These sorts of episodes now hardly even qualify as exceptional.

Trigger warnings aren’t much help in actually overcoming trauma — an analysis by the Institute of Medicine has found that the best approach is controlled exposure to it, and experts say avoidance can reinforce suffering. Indeed, one professor at a prestigious university told me that, just in the last few years, she has noticed a dramatic upsurge in her students’ sensitivity toward even the mildest social or ideological slights; she and her fellow faculty members are terrified of facing accusations of triggering trauma — or, more consequentially, violating her school’s new sexual-harassment policy — merely by carrying out the traditional academic work of intellectual exploration. “This is an environment of fear, believe it or not,” she told me by way of explaining her request for anonymity. It reminds her of the previous outbreak of political correctness — “Every other day I say to my friends, ‘How did we get back to 1991?’?”

But it would be a mistake to categorize today’s p.c. culture as only an academic phenomenon. Political correctness is a style of politics in which the more radical members of the left attempt to regulate political discourse by defining opposing views as bigoted and illegitimate. Two decades ago, the only communities where the left could exert such hegemonic control lay within academia, which gave it an influence on intellectual life far out of proportion to its numeric size. Today’s political correctness flourishes most consequentially on social media, where it enjoys a frisson of cool and vast new cultural reach. And since social media is also now the milieu that hosts most political debate, the new p.c. has attained an influence over mainstream journalism and commentary beyond that of the old.

It also makes money. Every media company knows that stories about race and gender bias draw huge audiences, making identity politics a reliable profit center in a media industry beset by insecurity. A year ago, for instance, a photographer compiled images of Fordham students displaying signs recounting “an instance of racial microaggression they have faced.” The stories ranged from uncomfortable (“No, where are you really from?”) to relatively innocuous (“?‘Can you read this?’ He showed me a Japanese character on his phone”). BuzzFeed published part of her project, and it has since received more than 2 million views. This is not an anomaly.

In a short period of time, the p.c. movement has assumed a towering presence in the psychic space of politically active people in general and the left in particular. “All over social media, there dwell armies of unpaid but widely read commentators, ready to launch hashtag campaigns and circulate Change.org petitions in response to the slightest of identity-politics missteps,” Rebecca Traister wrote recently in The New Republic.

Two and a half years ago, Hanna Rosin, a liberal journalist and longtime friend, wrote a book called The End of Men, which argued that a confluence of social and economic changes left women in a better position going forward than men, who were struggling to adapt to a new postindustrial order. Rosin, a self-identified feminist, has found herself unexpectedly assailed by feminist critics, who found her message of long-term female empowerment complacent and insufficiently concerned with the continuing reality of sexism. One Twitter hashtag, “#RIPpatriarchy,” became a label for critics to lampoon her thesis. Every new continuing demonstration of gender discrimination — a survey showing Americans still prefer male bosses; a person noticing a man on the subway occupying a seat and a half — would be tweeted out along with a mocking #RIPpatriarchy.

Her response since then has been to avoid committing a provocation, especially on Twitter. “If you tweet something straight­forwardly feminist, you immediately get a wave of love and favorites, but if you tweet something in a cranky feminist mode then the opposite happens,” she told me. “The price is too high; you feel like there might be banishment waiting for you.” Social media, where swarms of jeering critics can materialize in an instant, paradoxically creates this feeling of isolation. “You do immediately get the sense that it’s one against millions, even though it’s not.” Subjects of these massed attacks often describe an impulse to withdraw.

Political correctness is a term whose meaning has been gradually diluted since it became a flashpoint 25 years ago. People use the phrase to describe politeness (perhaps to excess), or evasion of hard truths, or (as a term of abuse by conservatives) liberalism in general. The confusion has made it more attractive to liberals, who share the goal of combating race and gender bias.

But political correctness is not a rigorous commitment to social equality so much as a system of left-wing ideological repression. Not only is it not a form of liberalism; it is antithetical to liberalism. Indeed, its most frequent victims turn out to be liberals themselves.

I am white and male, a fact that is certainly worth bearing in mind. I was also a student at the University of Michigan during the Jacobsen incident, and was attacked for writing an article for the campus paper defending the exhibit. If you consider this background and demographic information the very essence of my point of view, then there’s not much point in reading any further. But this pointlessness is exactly the point: Political correctness makes debate irrelevant and frequently impossible.

Under p.c. culture, the same idea can be expressed identically by two people but received differently depending on the race and sex of the individuals doing the expressing. This has led to elaborate norms and terminology within certain communities on the left. For instance, “mansplaining,” a concept popularized in 2008 by Rebecca Solnit, who described the tendency of men to patronizingly hold forth to women on subjects the woman knows better — in Solnit’s case, the man in question mansplained her own book to her. The fast popularization of the term speaks to how exasperating the phenomenon can be, and mansplaining has, at times, proved useful in identifying discrimination embedded in everyday rudeness. But it has now grown into an all-purpose term of abuse that can be used to discredit any argument by any man. (MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry once disdainfully called White House press secretary Jay Carney’s defense of the relative pay of men and women in the administration “man­splaining,” even though the question he responded to was posed by a male.) Mansplaining has since given rise to “whitesplaining” and “straightsplaining.” The phrase “solidarity is for white women,” used in a popular hashtag, broadly signifies any criticism of white feminists by nonwhite ones.

If a person who is accused of bias attempts to defend his intentions, he merely compounds his own guilt. (Here one might find oneself accused of man/white/straightsplaining.) It is likewise taboo to request that the accusation be rendered in a less hostile manner. This is called “tone policing.” If you are accused of bias, or “called out,” reflection and apology are the only acceptable response — to dispute a call-out only makes it worse. There is no allowance in p.c. culture for the possibility that the accusation may be erroneous. A white person or a man can achieve the status of “ally,” however, if he follows the rules of p.c. dialogue. A community, virtual or real, that adheres to the rules is deemed “safe.” The extensive terminology plays a crucial role, locking in shared ideological assumptions that make meaningful disagreement impossible.

Nearly every time I have mentioned the subject of p.c. to a female writer I know, she has told me about Binders Full of Women Writers, an invitation-only Facebook group started last year for women authors. The name came from Mitt Romney’s awkwardly phrased debate boast that as Massachusetts governor he had solicited names of female candidates for high-level posts, and became a form of viral mockery. Binders was created to give women writers a “laid-back” and “no-pressure” environment for conversation and professional networking. It was an attempt to alleviate the systemic under­representation of women in just about every aspect of American journalism and literature, and many members initially greeted the group as a welcome and even exhilarating source of social comfort and professional opportunity. “Suddenly you had the most powerful women in journalism and media all on the same page,” one former member, a liberal journalist in her 30s, recalls.

Binders, however, soon found itself frequently distracted by bitter identity-­politics recriminations, endlessly litigating the fraught requirements of p.c. discourse. “This was the first time I had felt this new kind of militancy,” says the same member, who requested anonymity for fear that her opinions would make her employer uncomfortable. Another sent me excerpts of the types of discussions that can make the group a kind of virtual mental prison.

On July 10, for instance, one member in Los Angeles started a conversation urging all participants to practice higher levels of racial awareness. “Without calling anyone out specifically, I’m going to note that if you’re discussing a contentious thread, and shooting the breeze … take a look at the faces in the user icons in that discussion,” she wrote. “Binders is pretty diverse, but if you’re not seeing many WOC/non-binary POC in your discussion, it’s quite possible that there are problematic assumptions being stated without being challenged.” (“POC” stands for “people of color.” “WOC” means “women of color.” “Non-binary” describes people who are either transgender or identify as a gender other than traditionally male or female.)

Two members responded lightly, one suggesting that such “call-outs” be addressed in private conversation and another joking that she was a “gluten free Jewish WWC” — or Woman Without Color. This set off more jokes and a vicious backlash. “It seems appropriate to hijack my suggestion with jokes. I see,” the Los Angeles member replied. “Apparently whatever WOC have to say is good for snark and jokes,” wrote another. Others continued: “The level of belittling, derailing, crappy jokes, and all around insensitivity here is astounding and also makes me feel very unsafe in this Big Binder.” “It is literally fucking insane. I am appalled and embarrassed.”

The suggestion that a call-out be communicated privately met with even deeper rage. A poet in Texas: “I’m not about to private message folks who have problematic racist, transphobic, anti-immigrant, and/or sexist language.” The L.A. member: “Because when POC speak on these conversations with snark and upset, we get Tone Argumented at, and I don’t really want to deal with the potential harm to me and mine.” Another writer: “You see people suggesting that PMs are a better way to handle racism? That’s telling us we are too vocal and we should pipe down.” A white Toronto member, sensing the group had dramatically underreacted, moved to rectify the situation: “JESUS FUCK, LIKE SERIOUSLY FUCK, I SEE MORE WHITE BINDERS POLICING WOC AND DEMANDING TO BE EDUCATED/UNEDUCATED AS IF IT’S A FUCKING NOBLE MISSION RATHER THAN I DUNNO SPEND TIME SHUTTING DOWN AND SHITTING ON RACIST DOUCHE CANOE BEHAVIOUR; WHAT ARE YOU GAINING BY THIS? WHAT ARE YOU DETRACTING? YOU NEED SCREENCAPS OF BURNING CROSSES TO BELIEVE RACIST SHIT IS HAPPENING? THIS THREAD IS PAINFUL. HUGS TO ALL THE WOC DURING THIS THREAD”

Every free society, facing the challenge of balancing freedom of expression against other values such as societal cohesion and tolerance, creates its own imperfect solution. France’s is especially convoluted and difficult to parse: It allows for satire and even blasphemy (like cartoons that run in Charlie Hebdo) but not for speech that incites violence toward individuals (like provocative comments made by the comedian Dieudonné M’bala M’bala). This may appear to Americans as a distinction without a difference, but our distinctions are also confused, as is our way of talking about free speech as it overlaps with our politics.

The right wing in the United States is unusually strong compared with other industrialized democracies, and it has spent two generations turning liberal into a feared buzzword with radical connotations. This long propaganda campaign has implanted the misperception — not only among conservatives but even many liberals — that liberals and “the left” stand for the same things.

It is true that liberals and leftists both want to make society more economically and socially egalitarian. But liberals still hold to the classic Enlightenment political tradition that cherishes individuals rights, freedom of expression, and the protection of a kind of free political marketplace. (So, for that matter, do most conservatives.)

The Marxist left has always dismissed liberalism’s commitment to protecting the rights of its political opponents — you know, the old line often misattributed to Voltaire, “I disapprove of what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it” — as hopelessly naïve. If you maintain equal political rights for the oppressive capitalists and their proletarian victims, this will simply keep in place society’s unequal power relations. Why respect the rights of the class whose power you’re trying to smash? And so, according to Marxist thinking, your political rights depend entirely on what class you belong to.

The modern far left has borrowed the Marxist critique of liberalism and substituted race and gender identities for economic ones. “The liberal view,” wrote MacKinnon 30 years ago, “is that abstract categories — like speech or equality — define systems. Every time you strengthen free speech in one place, you strengthen it everywhere. Strengthening the free speech of the Klan strengthens the free speech of Blacks.” She deemed this nonsensical: “It equates substantive powerlessness with substantive power and calls treating these the same, ‘equality.’?”

Political correctness appeals to liberals because it claims to represent a more authentic and strident opposition to their shared enemy of race and gender bias. And of course liberals are correct not only to oppose racism and sexism but to grasp (in a way conservatives generally do not) that these biases cast a nefarious and continuing shadow over nearly every facet of American life. Since race and gender biases are embedded in our social and familial habits, our economic patterns, and even our subconscious minds, they need to be fought with some level of consciousness. The mere absence of overt discrimination will not do.

Liberals believe (or ought to believe) that social progress can continue while we maintain our traditional ideal of a free political marketplace where we can reason together as individuals. Political correctness challenges that bedrock liberal ideal. While politically less threatening than conservatism (the far right still commands far more power in American life), the p.c. left is actually more philosophically threatening. It is an undemocratic creed.

Bettina Aptheker, a professor of feminist studies at the University of California–Santa Cruz, recently wrote an essay commemorating the Berkeley Free Speech movement, in which she participated as a student in 1964. She now expressed a newfound skepticism in the merits of free speech. “Freedom of speech is a constitutional guarantee, but who gets to exercise it without the chilling restraints of censure depends very much on one’s location in the political and social cartography,” she wrote. “We [Free Speech movement] veterans … were too young and inexperienced in 1964 to know this, but we do now, and we speak with a new awareness, a new consciousness, and a new urgency that the wisdom of a true freedom is inexorably tied to who exercises power and for what ends.”

These ideas have more than theoretical power. Last March at University of ­California–Santa Barbara, in, ironically, a “free-speech zone,” a 16-year-old anti-abortion protester named Thrin Short and her 21-year-old sister Joan displayed a sign arrayed with graphic images of aborted fetuses. They caught the attention of Mireille Miller-Young, a professor of feminist studies. Miller-Young, angered by the sign, demanded that they take it down. When they refused, Miller-Young snatched the sign, took it back to her office to destroy it, and shoved one of the Short sisters on the way.

Speaking to police after the altercation, Miller-Young told them that the images of the fetuses had “triggered” her and violated her “personal right to go to work and not be in harm.” A Facebook group called “UCSB Microaggressions” declared themselves “in solidarity” with Miller-Young and urged the campus “to provide as much support as possible.”

By the prevailing standards of the American criminal-justice system, Miller-Young had engaged in vandalism, battery, and robbery. By the logic of the p.c. movement, she was the victim of a trigger and had acted in the righteous cause of social justice. Her colleagues across the country wrote letters to the sentencing judge pleading for leniency. Jennifer Morgan, an NYU professor, blamed the anti-­abortion protesters for instigating the confrontation through their exercise of free speech. “Miller-Young’s actions should be mitigated both by her history as an educator as well as by her conviction that the [anti-abortion] images were an assault on her students,” Morgan wrote. Again, the mere expression of opposing ideas, in the form of a poster, is presented as a threatening act.

The website The Feminist Wire mounted an even more rousing defense of Miller-Young’s behavior. The whole idea that the professor committed a crime by stealing a sign and shoving away its owner turns out to be an ideological construct. “The ease with which privileged white, and particularly young white gender and sexually normative appearing women, make claims to ‘victimhood’ and ‘violation of property,’ is not a neutral move,” its authors argued. It concluded, “We issue a radical call for accountability to questions of history, representation, and the racialized gendering of tropes of ‘culpability’ and ‘innocence’ when considering Dr. Miller-Young’s case.”

These are extreme ideas, but they are neither isolated nor marginal. A widely cited column by a Harvard Crimson editorial writer last year demanded an end to academic freedom if freedom extended to objectionable ideas. “If our university community opposes racism, sexism, and heterosexism,” asked the author, “why should we put up with research that counters our goals simply in the name of ‘academic freedom’?” After the Nation’s Michelle Goldberg denounced a “growing left-wing tendency toward censoriousness and hair-trigger offense,” Rutgers professor Brittney Cooper replied in Salon: “The demand to be reasonable is a disingenuous demand. Black folks have been reasoning with white people forever. Racism is unreasonable, and that means reason has limited currency in the fight against it.”

The most probable cause of death of the first political-correctness movement was the 1992 presidential election. That event mobilized left-of-center politics around national issues like health care and the economy, and away from the introspective suppression of dissent within the academy. Bill Clinton’s campaign frontally attacked left-wing racial politics, famously using inflammatory comments by Sister Souljah to distance him from Jesse Jackson. Barbara Jordan, the first black woman from a southern state elected to the House of Representatives, attacked political correctness in her keynote speech. (“We honor cultural identity. We always have; we always will. But separatism is not allowed. Separatism is not the American way. We must not allow ideas like political correctness to divide us and cause us to reverse hard-won achievements in human rights and civil rights.”)

Yet it is possible to imagine that, as the next Clinton presidential campaign gets under way, p.c. culture may not dissolve so easily. The internet has shrunk the distance between p.c. culture and mainstream liberal politics, and the two are now hopelessly entangled. During the 2008 primary contest between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, the modern politics of grievance had already begun to play out, as each side’s supporters patrolled the other for any comment that might indicate gender or racial bias. It dissipated in the general election, but that was partly because Obama’s supporters worried about whether America really was ready to accept its first president who was not a white male. Clinton enters the 2016 race in a much stronger position than any other candidate, and her supporters may find it irresistible to amplify p.c. culture’s habit of interrogating the hidden gender biases in every word and gesture against their side.

Or maybe not. The p.c. style of politics has one serious, possibly fatal drawback: It is exhausting. Claims of victimhood that are useful within the left-wing subculture may alienate much of America. The movement’s dour puritanism can move people to outrage, but it may prove ill suited to the hopeful mood required of mass politics. Nor does it bode well for the movement’s longevity that many of its allies are worn out. “It seems to me now that the public face of social liberalism has ceased to seem positive, joyful, human, and freeing,” confessed the progressive writer Freddie deBoer. “There are so many ways to step on a land mine now, so many terms that have become forbidden, so many attitudes that will get you cast out if you even appear to hold them. I’m far from alone in feeling that it’s typically not worth it to engage, given the risks.” Goldberg wrote recently about people “who feel emotionally savaged by their involvement in [online feminism] — not because of sexist trolls, but because of the slashing righteousness of other feminists.” Former Feministing editor Samhita Mukhopadhyay told her, “Everyone is so scared to speak right now.”

That the new political correctness has bludgeoned even many of its own supporters into despondent silence is a triumph, but one of limited use. Politics in a democracy is still based on getting people to agree with you, not making them afraid to disagree. The historical record of political movements that sought to expand freedom for the oppressed by eliminating it for their enemies is dismal. The historical record of American liberalism, which has extended social freedoms to blacks, Jews, gays, and women, is glorious. And that glory rests in its confidence in the ultimate power of reason, not coercion, to triumph.


1 January, 2016

How stupid can you get? Sperm bank must use men with dyslexia, autism and ADHD

The grievance mongering seems to be reaching ever-new heights.  What mother would want a child with dyslexia, autism or ADHD?  So refusing to take donations from such men is simply practical.  That anyone is criticizing such simple sense is the amazing part.  But it is no surprise that the HFEA are getting involved.  They are a very arrogant and meddling lot.  Dr Taranissi showed that -- defeating them so amply that he nearly got them abolished.  They have apparently learnt nothing, however

Britain's largest sperm bank is under investigation for banning men with dyslexia.  Campaigners accused the clinic of ‘eugenics’ - attempting to genetically improve the human race.

The London Sperm Bank has produced leaflets stating it will not accept men who are dyslexic, have ADHD, autism or certain other conditions.

But the fertility watchdog has launched a review over concerns that the policy is illegal and unfairly discriminates thousands of men.

Around 1 in 10 of the population have some degree of dyslexia which causes problems with reading, writing and spelling. But a growing number of experts say it shouldn’t be counted as a disability as it is linked to being extremely good at maths, engineering or thinking creatively.

Famous sufferers include Sir Richard Branson, Albert Einstein and Steve Jobs, the late founder of Apple.

The clinic, based on London’s Harley Street, provides sperm for around 1,000 courses of IVF a year.

Under the heading ‘reasons for being unable to accept a man as a sperm donor’, it lists neurological diseases which include attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism, and dyslexia.

When would-be donors asked why these conditions were banned, they were told by staff it was the policy of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority watchdog. But the HFEA insists this isn’t the case and has since launched an investigation.

Fred Fisher, a 30-year-old dyslexic Oxford graduate, found out about the ban when he tried to become a donor in November.  He told the Guardian: ‘I was really taken aback to see dyslexia listed as a neurological disease. [Well.  What is it then?]‘I’d never thought they would turn people way for having dyslexia, especially given how important we are told science and entrepreneurship are these days.

Mr Fisher, a software engineer based in London, added: ‘I told them this was eugenics, but it’s not even good eugenics.

‘Would they turn away Richard Branson or Albert Einstein? We need innovative people who think differently in the world. Dyslexic people make a great contribution to our society.’

Vanessa Smith, quality manager at the JD Healthcare group, which runs the London Sperm Bank, said: ‘The HEFA has been in touch with us.  ‘In response we will be reviewing all our practices and protocols.’  She said the clinic had since withdrawn the leaflet banning dyslexia.  ‘Our literature states that but the policy is under review. ‘There may be some genetic component to it. But we are going to review all the recent literature about it.”  ‘We definitely don’t work in eugenics.

She added: ‘When we recruit a donor what we are looking for is good sperm that is going to freeze well and will produce a pregnancy afterwards.

‘We are looking for someone who is medically clear of infectious diseases and genetic issues that may possibly be passed on to any resulting child. ‘But we are also looking for a guy who is coming forward for the right reasons who understands the lifelong commitment to this.’


Multiculturalist forces woman to call her boyfriend so he can listen as he rapes her… but is caught when she dials 911 instead

Police arrested an attacker who abducted a woman and made her call her boyfriend so he could listen as he raped her in an adult store parking lot when she dialed 911 instead.

Robert Giles, 27, abducted the woman from her home in Hapeville, Atlanta, and told her to call her partner from the car because he wanted him to hear the sexual assault happening.

But the woman called 911, and the quick-thinking dispatcher pretended to be her boyfriend as he sent police to the parking lot of Starship Novelties and Gifts in Jonesboro, Atlanta.

Clayton County Police Major Joe Woodall said: 'She explained to him what the perpetrator had told her; that he was wanting him to listen while she was being raped,' reports WSB TV.

'They were able to stop it right then and there and snatched him right from the car,' he added.

Giles brought the woman to the store at around 4am on Monday morning which is when he told her to call her boyfriend.

The 911 operator tried to talk him out of the attack but dispatched cops as soon as he got the call. When police arrived, they caught Giles in the act of rape.

Police said that the phonecall was too graphic to release, but Major Woodall described it as 'horrific'.

Giles was arrested and now faces charges of rape, obstruction and false imprisonment, but police plan to add kidnapping to the list.


Police in Germany are covering up the extent of crime committed by migrants

Asylum seekers are being recruited across the country as cheap drug dealers as well as petty thieves, says German newspaper, Bild - the biggest daily paper in the country.

The paper accused the police of covering up the extent of migrant crimes in order to stop concerns among the general population.

It also claimed asylum seekers were prepared to work for a few euros couriering drugs across the country and said they were being signed up almost as soon as they had registered as asylum seekers.

Migrant crime was apparently the hot topic of discussion at gatherings of police, city officials, health officials and other officials dealing with the drug problem in the city of Frankfurt.

As well as drug related crimes, asylum seekers were also being used to sell stolen goods such as mobile phones, which in many cases were sold on to other refugees.

But the paper said that all of the officials dealing with the problem had been ordered not to talk about it, as it was an extremely sensitive subject that has been forbidden to be referred to in an 'offensive manner'.

The reason given by the paper was to avoid alarming the general public already concerned with the vast number of asylum seekers the country has allowed in, but also to avoid providing material for right-wing extremists.

New arrivals to the country were apparently the most desirable as they did not have any formal way of complaining about what they were asked to do and rarely gave problems to the drug-dealing Mafia. The most successful couriers are then being recruited into the Mafia and are also being used to bring in further new recruits.

This shocking claim comes as Germany will have registered just over a million migrants by the end of the year, a local paper has claimed.

This is roughly in line with the latest predictions but still about five times more than last year.

As Europe's biggest economy, Germany is a magnet for migrants partly due to generous social benefits and is taking in more refugees from the Middle East and Africa than any other EU state.

Authorities expect about 125,000 asylum seekers to have registered on Germany's EASY system in December, down considerably from 206,000 last month, Saechsische Zeitung reported, citing unpublished government figures. That brings the overall figure to 1.09 million people.

A spokeswoman for the Interior Ministry declined to confirm the numbers which will be available in early January, but Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said in a statement the numbers were falling slightly.

Germany's 16 federal states plan to spend about 17 billion euros to deal with the refugee crisis next year, a newspaper reported on Tuesday.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's popularity has waned as a result of her open-door policy, with some of her own conservatives - especially in Bavaria, the entry point for many seeking asylum - seeking a cap on numbers.

In a speech to her party this month she sought to silence critics by saying she would stem the flow of refugees.

De Maiziere said that creation of an orderly processing of refugee applications meant the situation was improving and that authorities were working hard to register and accommodate refugees.

Merkel's government is putting measures in place to speed up deportations of those refused asylum.

It is also pushing other EU countries to take more migrants and to work with Turkey to ensure fewer people come to Europe in the first place.

But de Maiziere rejected demands by Merkel's conservative Christian Social Union (CSU) in Bavaria to ban migrants from entering Germany unless they have valid identity papers.

He said: 'Regarding the CSU demands to send back refugees without valid identity papers, no further changes are planned.'


Australian Muslims sent $500,000 to Indonesia to fund terrorism

A terror financing investigation has uncovered about $500,000 in Australian cash sent to Indonesia to arm and train extremists and support their families.

A joint investigation between Australia and Indonesia found the cash was raised and transferred by an Australian man identified only by the letter L.

The money was collected from donors in Australia — some of whom may not have been aware their money was to be used to fund terrorism.

The details were confirmed by Agus Santoso, the deputy chairman of Indonesia's financial tracking watchdog, the Financial Transactions and Analysis Centre (PPATK).

"The one in Australia is a local Australian, not an Indonesian who is living in Australia and sending money to Indonesia," he said.

"The money was used for: one, to recruit people; secondly to fund training; thirdly to buy weapons, and the fourth is to give livelihood for the terrorists' family because the money goes to support the families of the terrorists who died."

Around 200 Indonesians are believed to have gone to Syria to fight for the Islamic State militant group, with at least 60 of them killed.

PPATK chairman Muhammad Yusuf said some of the Australians who donated may not have realised their cash was going to fund extremism.

"It could be when it happened, from the perspective of the donor; it was meant for charity not for terrorism," he said.

Indonesia says the Australian cash may have been used to support local terror networks, such as the group of alleged extremists arrested a week ago.

So far, 11 people have been arrested across Java and accused of plotting attacks on the nation's minority Shiite community, Christians and possibly even westerners.

They were arrested by special forces from Indonesia's anti-terror body Densus 88.

Mr Santoso said information from Australia's counter-terrorism financing watchdog AusTrac was crucial to uncovering these Indonesian networks.

"We really appreciate the cooperation with AusTrac and the AFP. It revealed the terrorism network between Australia and Indonesia, the network has been revealed, and we have handed over the case to Densus 88 to follow up," he said.

Indonesia is still on a state of heightened terror alert, with particularly tight security for the nation's New Year celebrations.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here



HOME (Index page)

BIO for John Ray

(Isaiah 62:1)

A 19th century Democrat political poster below:

Political correctness is Fascism pretending to be manners

Political Correctness is as big a threat to free speech as Communism and Fascism. All 3 were/are socialist.

The problem with minorities is not race but culture. For instance, many American black males fit in well with the majority culture. They go to college, work legally for their living, marry and support the mother of their children, go to church, abstain from crime and are considerate towards others. Who could reasonably object to such people? It is people who subscribe to minority cultures -- black, Latino or Muslim -- who can give rise to concern. If antisocial attitudes and/or behaviour become pervasive among a group, however, policies may reasonably devised to deal with that group as a whole

Psychological defence mechanisms such as projection play a large part in Leftist thinking and discourse. So their frantic search for evil in the words and deeds of others is easily understandable. The evil is in themselves. Leftist motivations are fundamentally Fascist. They want to "fundamentally transform" the lives of their fellow citizens, which is as authoritarian as you can get. We saw where it led in Russia and China. The "compassion" that Leftists parade is just a cloak for their ghastly real motivations

Occasionally I put up on this blog complaints about the privileged position of homosexuals in today's world. I look forward to the day when the pendulum swings back and homosexuals are treated as equals before the law. To a simple Leftist mind, that makes me "homophobic", even though I have no fear of any kind of homosexuals.

But I thought it might be useful for me to point out a few things. For a start, I am not unwise enough to say that some of my best friends are homosexual. None are, in fact. Though there are two homosexuals in my normal social circle whom I get on well with and whom I think well of.

Of possible relevance: My late sister was a homosexual; I loved Liberace's sense of humour and I thought that Robert Helpmann was marvellous as Don Quixote in the Nureyev ballet of that name.

I record on this blog many examples of negligent, inefficient and reprehensible behaviour on the part of British police. After 13 years of Labour party rule they have become highly politicized, with values that reflect the demands made on them by the political Left rather than than what the community expects of them. They have become lazy and cowardly and avoid dealing with real crime wherever possible -- preferring instead to harass normal decent people for minor infractions -- particularly offences against political correctness. They are an excellent example of the destruction that can be brought about by Leftist meddling.

I also record on this blog much social worker evil -- particularly British social worker evil. The evil is neither negligent nor random. It follows exactly the pattern you would expect from the Marxist-oriented indoctrination they get in social work school -- where the middle class is seen as the enemy and the underclass is seen as virtuous. So social workers are lightning fast to take children away from normal decent parents on the basis of of minor or imaginary infractions while turning a blind eye to gross child abuse by the underclass

What feminism has wrought:

There's actually some wisdom there. The dreamy lady says she is holding out for someone who meets her standards. The other lady reasonably replies "There's nobody there". Standards can be unrealistically high and feminists have laboured mightily to make them so

Racial differences in temperament: Chinese are more passive even as little babies

The genetics of crime: I have been pointing out for some time the evidence that there is a substantial genetic element in criminality. Some people are born bad. See here, here, here and here, for instance"

Gender is a property of words, not of people. Using it otherwise is just another politically correct distortion -- though not as pernicious as calling racial discrimination "Affirmative action"

Postmodernism is fundamentally frivolous. Postmodernists routinely condemn racism and intolerance as wrong but then say that there is no such thing as right and wrong. They are clearly not being serious. Either they do not really believe in moral nihilism or they believe that racism cannot be condemned!

Postmodernism is in fact just a tantrum. Post-Soviet reality in particular suits Leftists so badly that their response is to deny that reality exists. That they can be so dishonest, however, simply shows how psychopathic they are.

So why do Leftists say "There is no such thing as right and wrong" when backed into a rhetorical corner? They say it because that is the predominant conclusion of analytic philosophers. And, as Keynes said: "Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back”

Children are the best thing in life. See also here.

Juergen Habermas, a veteran leftist German philosopher stunned his admirers not long ago by proclaiming, "Christianity, and nothing else, is the ultimate foundation of liberty, conscience, human rights, and democracy, the benchmarks of Western civilization. To this day, we have no other options [than Christianity]. We continue to nourish ourselves from this source. Everything else is postmodern chatter."

Consider two "jokes" below:

Q. "Why are Leftists always standing up for blacks and homosexuals?

A. Because for all three groups their only God is their penis"

Pretty offensive, right? So consider this one:

Q. "Why are evangelical Christians like the Taliban?

A. They are both religious fundamentalists"

The latter "joke" is not a joke at all, of course. It is a comparison routinely touted by Leftists. Both "jokes" are greatly offensive and unfair to the parties targeted but one gets a pass without question while the other would bring great wrath on the head of anyone uttering it. Why? Because political correctness is in fact just Leftist bigotry. Bigotry is unfairly favouring one or more groups of people over others -- usually justified as "truth".

One of my more amusing memories is from the time when the Soviet Union still existed and I was teaching sociology in a major Australian university. On one memorable occasion, we had a representative of the Soviet Womens' organization visit us -- a stout and heavily made-up lady of mature years. When she was ushered into our conference room, she was greeted with something like adulation by the local Marxists. In question time after her talk, however, someone asked her how homosexuals were treated in the USSR. She replied: "We don't have any. That was before the revolution". The consternation and confusion that produced among my Leftist colleagues was hilarious to behold and still lives vividly in my memory. The more things change, the more they remain the same, however. In Sept. 2007 President Ahmadinejad told Columbia university that there are no homosexuals in Iran.

It is widely agreed (with mainly Lesbians dissenting) that boys need their fathers. What needs much wider recognition is that girls need their fathers too. The relationship between a "Daddy's girl" and her father is perhaps the most beautiful human relationship there is. It can help give the girl concerned inner strength for the rest of her life.

A modern feminist complains: "We are so far from “having it all” that “we barely even have a slice of the pie, which we probably baked ourselves while sobbing into the pastry at 4am”."

A beautiful baby is king -- with blue eyes, blond hair and white skin. How incorrect can you get?

The most beautiful woman in the world? I think she was. Yes: It's Agnetha Fältskog

Patriotism does NOT in general go with hostilty towards others. See e.g. here and here and even here ("Ethnocentrism and Xenophobia: A Cross-Cultural Study" by anthropologist Elizabeth Cashdan. In Current Anthropology Vol. 42, No. 5, December 2001).

There really is an actress named Donna Air

The love of bureaucracy is very Leftist and hence "correct". Who said this? "Account must be taken of every single article, every pound of grain, because what socialism implies above all is keeping account of everything". It was V.I. Lenin

"An objection I hear frequently is: ‘Why should we tolerate intolerance?’ The assumption is that tolerating views that you don’t agree with is like a gift, an act of kindness. It suggests we’re doing people a favour by tolerating their view. My argument is that tolerance is vital to us, to you and I, because it’s actually the presupposition of all our freedoms. You cannot be free in any meaningful sense unless there is a recognition that we are free to act on our beliefs, we’re free to think what we want and express ourselves freely. Unless we have that freedom, all those other freedoms that we have on paper mean nothing" -- SOURCE


What the Bible says about homosexuality:

"Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind; It is abomination" -- Lev. 18:22

In his great diatribe against the pagan Romans, the apostle Paul included homosexuality among their sins:

"For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature. And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.... Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them" -- Romans 1:26,27,32.

So churches that condone homosexuality are clearly post-Christian

Although I am an atheist, I have great respect for the wisdom of ancient times as collected in the Bible. And its condemnation of homosexuality makes considerable sense to me. In an era when family values are under constant assault, such a return to the basics could be helpful. Nonetheless, I approve of St. Paul's advice in the second chapter of his epistle to the Romans that it is for God to punish them, not us. In secular terms, homosexuality between consenting adults in private should not be penalized but nor should it be promoted or praised. In Christian terms, "Gay pride" is of the Devil

The homosexuals of Gibeah (Judges 19 & 20) set in train a series of events which brought down great wrath and destruction on their tribe. The tribe of Benjamin was almost wiped out when it would not disown its homosexuals. Are we seeing a related process in the woes presently being experienced by the amoral Western world? Note that there was one Western country that was not affected by the global financial crisis and subsequently had no debt problems: Australia. In September 2012 the Australian federal parliament considered a bill to implement homosexual marriage. It was rejected by a large majority -- including members from both major political parties

Religion is deeply human. The recent discoveries at Gobekli Tepe suggest that it was religion not farming that gave birth to civilization. Early civilizations were at any rate all very religious. Atheism is mainly a very modern development and is even now very much a minority opinion

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" - Isaiah 5:20 (KJV)

I think it's not unreasonable to see Islam as the religion of the Devil. Any religion that loves death or leads to parents rejoicing when their children blow themselves up is surely of the Devil -- however you conceive of the Devil. Whether he is a man in a red suit with horns and a tail, a fallen spirit being, or simply the evil side of human nature hardly matters. In all cases Islam is clearly anti-life and only the Devil or his disciples could rejoice in that.

And there surely could be few lower forms of human behaviour than to give abuse and harm in return for help. The compassionate practices of countries with Christian traditions have led many such countries to give a new home to Muslim refugees and seekers after a better life. It's basic humanity that such kindness should attract gratitude and appreciation. But do Muslims appreciate it? They most commonly show contempt for the countries and societies concerned. That's another sign of Satanic influence.

And how's this for demonic thinking?: "Asian father whose daughter drowned in Dubai sea 'stopped lifeguards from saving her because he didn't want her touched and dishonoured by strange men'

And where Muslims tell us that they love death, the great Christian celebration is of the birth of a baby -- the monogenes theos (only begotten god) as John 1:18 describes it in the original Greek -- Christmas!

On all my blogs, I express my view of what is important primarily by the readings that I select for posting. I do however on occasions add personal comments in italicized form at the beginning of an article.

I am rather pleased to report that I am a lifelong conservative. Out of intellectual curiosity, I did in my youth join organizations from right across the political spectrum so I am certainly not closed-minded and am very familiar with the full spectrum of political thinking. Nonetheless, I did not have to undergo the lurch from Left to Right that so many people undergo. At age 13 I used my pocket-money to subscribe to the "Reader's Digest" -- the main conservative organ available in small town Australia of the 1950s. I have learnt much since but am pleased and amused to note that history has since confirmed most of what I thought at that early age.

I imagine that the the RD is still sending mailouts to my 1950s address!

Germaine Greer is a stupid old Harpy who is notable only for the depth and extent of her hatreds

Even Mahatma Gandhi was profoundly unimpressed by Africans


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