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 This site is updated several times a month but is no longer updated daily.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.

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8 December, 2014

Tories at war with 'biased BBC'

David Cameron and George Osborne furious over Autumn Statement coverage which they claim contained 'systematic exaggeration'

The Conservatives have accused the BBC of “bias” and “systematic exaggeration” after David Cameron and George Osborne launched an unprecedented attack on the corporation’s coverage of the Autumn Statement.

The row threatens to cause tensions between the Tories and the BBC five months from what is shaping up to be one of the most unpredictable general elections in decades.

One senior Tory MP suggested there was a risk that unless the BBC was scrupulously fair in its reporting it could drive voters “into the arms of Labour”, and even find its future funding arrangements affected.

The news came as it emerged that:

* Britain faces public spending cuts on a “colossal scale” after the election, which will lead to a “fundamental reimagining” of the role of the state, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, with an estimated £55?billion worth of cuts still to come by 2020;

* Green levies on household energy bills are to triple over the next five years to nearly £10?billion, due to an increase in wind farms, said the Government’s independent Office for Budgetary Responsibility;

* The state pension will rise by 2.5 per cent to £115.95 a week, up from £113.10 next year. Experts said it would have risen by more if the Coalition had not changed the way the rise is calculated.

Mr Cameron, Mr Osborne and other senior Conservative figures criticised two separate television and radio reports broadcast by the BBC within hours of the Autumn Statement on Wednesday.

BBC Radio 4’s Today programme compared forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility to “a book of doom” and said that Britain was heading back to the time of George Orwell’s The Road to Wigan Pier.

That came hours after BBC Two’s Newsnight broadcast black and white footage of rioting workers over a commentary by its presenter, Evan Davis, comparing the UK’s prospects to the depression of the 1930s. Mr Davis told viewers: “You have to go back to the depression of the 1930s to find a crisis comparable to the one we are in — it is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences.”

The Prime Minister and the Chancellor both said that the coverage on the Today programme was “hyperbolic” because it exaggerated the economic threat to the UK.

Mr Osborne said the comparison with Orwell’s Britain was “nonsense”, adding: “I would have thought the BBC would have learnt from the last four years that its totally hyperbolic coverage of spending cuts has not been matched by what has actually happened.”

Mr Cameron’s spokesman said that the reporting impeded a “clear and sensible and measured debate about the decisions that are being taken and that need to be taken in the future”.

A senior government source added: “There have been examples in the past of bias from the BBC. But it’s when it slips into references to George Orwell and the idea of people living in penury that it becomes a real issue.

“The BBC needs to address subjects like this in a serious way. Their approach was so wildly inaccurate that we had to challenge it.”

Grant Shapps, the Conservative Party chairman, added: “With an election approaching, it is vitally important that the BBC adheres to the highest standard of editorial impartiality.” Conor Burns, a Tory member of the culture, media and sport committee which scrutinises the BBC’s work, said it was “patently absurd” for Newsnight to suggest “either political party will be intent on taking Britain back to a pre-welfare state, pre-health service Britain”.

Being overly critical of the Coalition’s attempts to find efficiency savings could swing votes to Labour, he said.

He added: “Any ideas that a future Conservative government would undo the National Health Service or undo the welfare state could have consequences of sending voters into the arms of Labour and that would be more than unfortunate, it would be deeply unprofessional for our national broadcaster.”

The row could have a bearing on the corporation’s attempts to renegotiate its Royal Charter which set its budget for the next 10 years.

Mr Burns added: “Our national broadcaster that wanted its charter renewed in 2016 will be under even more scrutiny than normal.”

Andrew Bridgen, the Conservative MP, on Thursday wrote to Rona Fairhead, the BBC Trust’s chairman, to complain “about a pattern of systematic exaggeration in the BBC’s reporting of the Autumn Statement”.

Mr Bridgen said he wanted “to seek assurances that in the remaining six months until the general election your coverage will demonstrate the impartiality and balance that the public, and indeed the BBC charter, demand”.

He went on: “Over the last four years the entire nation has pulled together to achieve something many said could not be done: we are now the fastest growing advanced economy in the developed world. The sacrifices and hard work of the British people are ill-served by pessimistic reporting which obscures our economic success with the language of fear and doom.”

A BBC spokesman said that it was satisfied that the Today programme’s coverage had been “fair and balanced and we gave the Chancellor plenty of opportunity to respond on the programme”.

The comments on Newsnight were justified because the Office for Budget Responsibility had itself said that nominal government consumption will fall to its lowest level since 1938, the BBC said.

The spokesman added: “The BBC takes its responsibility for impartial coverage very seriously. It is the duty of all journalists to ask politicians difficult questions. We will keep asking them.

“We’ll undoubtedly get more criticism from across the political spectrum as the election gets closer, but we’ll keep doing our job.”

SOURCE






UK's view of migrants is bull****, says UN official: Fury after French Canadian claims British see immigrants as 'barbarians' who threaten culture

A United Nations official has sparked fury after claiming the public see immigrants as ‘barbarians’ who threaten British culture.

Francois Crepeau, the UN Special Rapporteur for Migrants Rights, said hostile attitudes towards migrants in Britain were ‘utter bull****’ - and based on ‘fantasy’ of preserving a 2,000 year-old culture.

The Canadian was accused of ‘offensive bigotry’ and political bias over his remarks comments, which also included an attack on Ukip and an apparent endorsement of New Labour’s mass migration policies.

And he even appeared to accuse ministers of letting migrants die by not supporting search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean.

His comments are only the latest in a string of attacks on the government from United Nations officials on Government policy over welfare reform, human rights and policy towards women in recent years.

One Whitehall source said: ‘The UN stands for unelected, unrepresentative and unrealistic when it comes to immigration. 'The government will do what the public expects which is control immigration, not what some unelected bureaucrat says.’

Tory MP Dominic Raab said: ‘To claim the British public sees immigrants as ‘barbarians’ because it is gripped by a 2,000 year old cultural ‘fantasy’ is offensive bigotry.

'Monsieur Crepeau is aping the very prejudice he is supposed to be fighting.’

Mr Crepeau made the comments in an interview with the i newspaper, in which he was quoted as criticising the attitudes towards immigration in the UK.

‘The fantasy is that there is a core British culture that was created probably 2,000 years ago and carried on,’ he said.

‘And now it’s being threatened by all those barbarians that are coming to our gate. This is utter bull****, but who is going to say this?’

He also criticised the Government’s decision not to join in further search and rescue operations.

Ministers withdrew support in late October amid reports people traffickers were using it as a ‘taxi service’ and encouraging more migrants to attempt the hazardous crossing from North Africa in ramshackle boats.

Traffickers were said to be setting off with satellite phones and then calling the Italian coastguard to come and pick them up, it emerged.

‘When politicians are saying, “We should not do search and rescue because it encourages other people to come’, to me this is an extremely cynical way of putting it,” said Mr Crépeau.

He added: ‘Not supporting search and rescue operations means letting them die. This is what happens, if you don’t search and rescue them; they die.  ‘If we accept that, I think we go well beyond the moral boundaries of our political system.’

He was speaking ahead of a ‘fact-finding’ mission to Italy, where 150,000 migrants were picked up from the sea in the past year

In apparent praise for Tony Blair’s government, he said it was a ‘multicultural, diverse, open society’ which created Cool Britannia in the 1990s.  On Ukip he added: ‘If Britannia is ruled by the Ukip, or with Ukip-type policies, it is not going to be cool.’

Ukip leader Nigel Farage told the Telegraph: ‘More people came to Britain in 2013 than came between 1066 and 1950. 'That gives you a sense of perspective of where we are with this, so he is talking utter baloney.

‘He is just not living in the real world. Britain is one of the most relaxed countries in the whole of Europe on immigration, but not with numbers like this.’

In 2012, Britain faced a review of its human rights record by countries including Iran, Russia and Cuba.

British human rights protection was criticised in the report by countries notorious for their wholesale denial of human rights - among them Pakistan, Belarus and the Sudan.

SOURCE






Polish toy manufacturer refuses to pull Nazi-themed toys from shelves... claiming they educate children on history

A Polish toy manufacturer has declared that it will continue to sell its line of Nazi-themed toys despite public backlash. Speaking from Warsaw, Cobi Toys CEO Robert Podles insisted that keeping such dolls and games on shelves offered a 'fun' way for children to be taught history.

'We believe that through good fun we can teach history and we will continue this line in the future, Podles says in the video. 'We cannot separate this from history,' he continued.

'Our history, our whole European history, unfortunately has imbibed this Nazism from the Second World War and we cannot escape from that.’

The toys sold by the company involved Nazi tanks, soldiers and other military items, as well as Soviet, American and British toys.

The statement from Cobi comes on the heels of a recent decision from Swedish department store, Gekås in Ullared, to cease stocking the Nazi-inspired toys.  Gekås CEO Boris Lennerhov explained: 'This is not something we want to promote as form of ideal.'

SOURCE






Lord Mayor walks out of Islamic charity lunch after his lady consort was told she had to sit downstairs at the event

A Lord Mayor walked out of an Islamic charity lunch after discovering that he would have to be segregated from his female consort.  Labour councillor John Thomas, 70, arrived at the function last Sunday with consort Margaret Corley, 72.

But Councillor Thomas, the Lord Mayor of Leicester, was said to be upset at being told he would have to dine in an upstairs function room with male guests, while his consort would be seated downstairs with the other women.

The lunch was held to mark the end of Charity Week – an annual fundraising event supported by around 20 university Islamic societies in the UK, and others in Canada and Qatar. It took place at a wedding and conference venue near Leicester railway station.

Guests at the event, who paid £6 a ticket, were told that the week of fundraising to help orphaned and disadvantaged children raised £730,000. But Councillor Thomas seemed to be in no mood for celebrating and left early. It is understood Mrs Corley left with him.

A source at the event said the Mayor had ‘insulted’ other guests by walking out, adding: ‘Students from universities, colleges and schools raised over £732,000 in just one week.

‘They contributed their time and efforts to raise money. The Lord Mayor should have respected this work.’

Councillor Thomas, who lives with his disabled wife Irene, 59, in Hamilton, Leicester, declined to comment on the matter.

But another source with knowledge of the incident said the Mayor’s office had previously been sent some information outlining what he could expect at the function. ‘The Mayor says no such information [about sitting separately] was passed to him, so the arrangement seems to have taken him by surprise’, they said.

Mrs Corley, who lives in a bungalow in the nearby village of Scraptoft, also declined to comment. She is understood to be a widow, and it is not known how she came to be selected as the Lord Mayor’s consort.

Councillor Thomas was elected to Leicester City Council in 1995 and currently represents Belgrave ward, a largely ethnic Indian district in a city where more than half of the population is non-white.

A spokesman for Islamic Relief, Charity Week’s partner organisation, said Councillor Thomas ‘arrived at the venue but left before the event started’. He added: ‘What happened was an unfortunate misunderstanding for which I want to apologise to the Lord Mayor on behalf of Islamic Relief and Charity Week.

‘None of the Charity Week organisers told the Lord Mayor he could not sit with his partner, and if anyone else at the event did then they were mistaken. The Lord Mayor and his partner would have been more than welcome to enjoy this event together.’

SOURCE

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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

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7 December, 2014

Multicultural swindler in Britain



A lonely hearts conman who scammed four women out of almost £100,000 by posing as a Royal Marine on dating website Match.com has been jailed for four years

Adewale Adewole, 31, a Nigerian immigrant, wooed his victims after falsely claiming to be an army captain who ran an orphanage in Africa.

Adopting the name Timmy Francis, he claimed he was looking for romance on the site with two profiles: 'Charismatic Brit' and 'To live and love'.

But the pictures he used to create an appealing profile were actually of a Royal Marine Commando called Joshua McGowan who was unaware his images were being used by Adewole.

The unnamed women who replied to his seemingly perfect profile fell for his charms but were then duped out of their money when Adewole claimed he was robbed at his 'orphanage'.

The women sent him cash and paid his hotel bills thinking they were bailing out their suitor - only for him to divert the money into the bank account of his wife who shared his home with their two children in Eccles, Greater Manchester.

Manchester Crown Court heard yesterday that Adewole, a father of three, also splashed out on iPads, TVs and designer clothes.

Police who investigated the scam discovered the women had tried to meet up with him but he always stood them up.

He now faces jail after admitting four charges of fraud but is disputing some of the facts and is running a 'trial of issue.'

Prosecutor Charlotte Brandon told the court the four victims were registered with Match.com and did not know each other.

She added: 'They were all contacted on the dating site by a man called Timmy Francis who had two profiles under the mottos 'To Live and Love' and 'Charismatic Brit'. 'They had contact with him during the period the fraud took place via text message, phone and email.

'He told them he had been a captain in the army. He also said he ran an orphanage in Africa called the Hope House Foundation, for which he set up a website with his own mobile phone number on.

'There was a profile picture on his Match accounts and he sent some of the women photographs of himself - all of these pictures were actually of a Royal Marine Commander called Joshua McGowan who knew nothing of what was going on.

'Although they arranged to meet, he never kept to the arrangements and never did meet any of the victims.'

Miss Brandon added: 'He told the women that on a trip to Africa he was the victim of a crime and needed money. The crime meant he could not access his own funds.

'He said they would get their money back and would be sent letters from the World Health Organisation to show that he would be able to pay them.

'These letters were sent, but from an M30 Manchester postmark. He also sent them links to websites which, when logging in with details he gave them, appeared to show that he had a huge bank balance and would eventually be able to pay them back.

'One woman was asked to pay for a hotel for him. When she rang the number he gave her for the hotel, they also confirmed the information and she agreed to pay it. 'She later received a cheque addressed to him for £35,000 to prove he had money, but this was later discovered to be a stolen cheque forged in his own handwriting.

'Over a number of months each woman transferred significant sums of money via bank accounts and Western Union moneygrams and sent items to the defendant's home address. They bought electronic items, took out credit cards and loans and bought clothes from Next.

'Many of the goods were sent to his home address in Eccles from where the victims believed they would be forwarded on to the defendant in Nigeria.  'When the women stopped sending money, they never heard from him again.'

The court heard the total amount stolen including the value of the household goods and Western Union transfers was £98,140.

Adewole was arrested in October 2012 at his flat and £4,500 in cash was found under his bed.

A digital camera was found purchased by one of the victims, but containing pictures of the defendant and his wife and children. Designer clothes and shoes were also found worth £2,000.

Adewole's wallet was also seized and contained several SIM cards, some of which contained the phone numbers of the victims.

His two Blackberry phones were also seized - on these three different email accounts were in use which were linked to the two Match.com accounts.

He was bailed and later tried to call one of the woman again under the name Timmy Francis and was arrested again.

When questioned he claimed to know nothing of the orphanage but that the £4,500 was his and claimed the majority of the items found in his flat were to go to his mother in Nigeria.

He added all he knew of the bank transfers was that his flatmate Samson Ajayi had asked him to have some money transferred to a relative - and claimed Mr Ajayi was responsible.

He admitted he had used Match.com between 2010 and 2012 but could not remember when exactly.

Detective Constable Sean Nicholls, from Greater Manchester Police, told the hearing: 'There has never been any evidence to prove there was someone else involved.

'There was possibly some help involved somewhere in Nigeria. There may well have been more than one person assisting him, male and female. 'But I believe any phone calls made to the victims were from the defendant himself.  'I believe Timmy Francis is a made-up name. I have made enquiries in our systems but there is nothing to suggest he exists.'

Adewole, who arrived in UK in 2009 on a visa to study, said: 'The fraud was Samson's idea. I got involved because I had a few financial difficulties at the time.   'I did not speak with the complainants. I did not know money was being sent to Nigeria but I knew it was being sent to my bank account and my wife's bank account.

'I do not know where Samson is at the moment. He travels a lot. I have no idea about the details of this fraud. I didn't even know how many victims there were.

'But I pleaded guilty because if I had not let my bank account or flat be used, these women would not have suffered in the way that they did.

'Samson said he was expecting some money. He said he had no bank accounts to receive the money so I wanted to help him. He was owing me rent at the time and this was the only way he could pay me. '

Sentencing Adewole today, Judge David Stockdale said: 'The evidence against the defendant is, in my judgement, overwhelming.

'I am satisfied on the evidence I have heard of the facts that the defendant's role in the enterprise in which these four women were defrauded was a leading role.

'He was not working alone and others were involved but the use of his bank account and phones and the items found at his flat all indicate overwhelmingly that the defendant was a principal player.

'The man called Samson has not been traced. He may have been an accomplice.. If Samson was an accomplice and took part in this operation, that does not undermine my conclusion. That is my ruling on the issue.'

SOURCE






Hobbit Author J.R.R. Tolkien's Anti-Socialist, Pro-Liberty Message

J.R.R. Tolkien, the British author best known for The Hobbit and his epic trilogy, The Lord of the Rings, was an astute critic of socialism and utopianism and a passionate defender of liberty, says Jay Richards, co-author of The Hobbit Party, which he calls “a study of the political and economic implications of Tolkien’s thought.”

“Certainly anyone that’s seen The Lord of the Rings, for instance, at the movies knows that he was deeply concerned about the dangers and the temptations of absolute power.

"The symbol of the one ring, of course. It’s not just a symbol of the sort of corrupting possibilities of power, but the especially corrupting possibilities of power to dominate the wills of others,” Richards, who is also an assistant professor at Catholic University’s School of Business and Economics, told CNSNews.com.

“His book and the ring are not a critique of all uses of power. In fact, the good guys fight in wars and battles, and so obviously you use force. But it’s rather a critique of the perennial human temptation to acquire power to dominate others.

"And so this is what gives his books, especially The Lord of the Rings, a kind of a deeply political character and we think makes him a strong advocate both for small and limited government, but also a strong defender of freedom.”

Sifting through hundreds of Tolkien’s private letters as well as his works of fiction, Richards and co-author Jonathan Witt found many examples in which he criticized “both the kind of hard socialism that he had witnessed in the Soviet Union, but also the sort of post-World War II soft democratic socialism he saw in Great Britain, which was very much in the ascendancy” when The Hobbit was published in 1937.

“And so it shouldn’t be a surprise that a lot of the kind of official literati and literary critics panned the books. They thought they were just absolutely terrible. One critic we quote in the book says: ‘These are not the sorts of books a person will read more than once,’ which of course is exactly the opposite of the case. These are books people read throughout their lives.

“But what’s interesting about Tolkien, one sign that’s there more economic message to these texts than people realize, is that the Soviet Union banned all of Tolkien’s writings. It’s not often known, but we tell the story at the end of the book about those great days during the collapse of the Soviet Union when thousands of civilians poured into Red Square and there was this question about what the tanks were going to do. And in the middle of those crowds a sign popped up that said: ‘Frodo is with us’.

“And that’s when a lot of Americans found out that in fact, the Soviets had been passing around this sort of contraband, mimeographed version, bad translation of The Lord of the Rings for decades.”

Although both the Russian dissidents and the Soviet Politburo clearly understood the underlying political and economic message in Tolkien’s trilogy, “ordinary English readers often don’t get it because we don’t suffer in the way that they did,” Richards said.

“Contrary to what a lot of people think about Tolkien, he wasn’t a Luddite,” he noted. “He wasn’t opposed to economic trade, and in fact he used widening circles of trade as an example of human flourishing. That’s something I think a lot of people don’t notice unless they’re looking for it.

“As far as we know, he never studied economics,” Richards continued. “It was just the result of having a very good theology and a rich anthropology, and so managing to intuitively come to some very sound economic conclusions. That was surprising. We knew he would be interesting and insightful, but I didn’t really expect him to be quite as acutely understanding of economic topics, far more so than his critics and many of his fans [are aware].”

“We know he was a Tory, and so he was essentially a political conservative, and was very skeptical of state power, especially the centralization of power even to his own party. But he was also a monarchist. That’s something that makes him challenging, I think, to modern Americans.

“And so I would just call him a small government conservative who didn’t like concentrations of power and had a genuinely benign view of human creativity and trade. He would probably be a curmudgeonly conservative in the United States today, but he doesn’t fit so neatly into American political categories.”

However, the underlying economic and political theme of Tolkien’s work “taps into these universal realities of life and death, love and sacrifice, good and evil,” Richards told CNSNews.com.                         

“On the first page of The Lord of the Rings he starts with the Shire. He says at that time, the Shire had hardly any government. In fact, the only government is the sheriffs who walk around without uniforms, and all they really do is protect people’s property. So if some sheep wander into another farmer’s field, the sheriff moves the sheep over.

“And then you come to the end of The Lord of the Rings in the book (not the movie), and there’s a chapter called ‘The Scouring of the Shire,’ which every interpreter recognizes as an obvious critique of socialism. The fallen wizard Saruman gets some of his toadies and some other Hobbits, and they essentially take control of the shire. They take down the Party Tree, tear down buildings and centralize the means of production.

“In the beginning, there’s this beautiful, bucolic, very small government image, and then at the end you have the Hobbits having to retake the Shire after it’s been overrun by these planners and controllers.”

Because Tolkien, a Catholic, had an “essentially Christian worldview,” Richards pointed out that he did not sugar-coat the realities of life on Earth, including Middle Earth. ”He believed in the goodness of creation, but he also believed in the Fall and didn’t think utopias were possible. So he didn’t want to have these overly saccharine happy endings in which everything just got put back into place.”

Tolkien was “bemused” when hippies in America discovered him during the 1960s. CNSNews.com asked Richards why he was so popular with the far-left crowd.

“It’s hard to say what is interesting to people who are dropping acid and smoking pot, but [Tolkien’s creation] is just so mind-blowing. It’s a fascinating, complete world. It’s ironic, because the drug culture was about an escape psychologically into Middle Earth and the literature is not escapist. In fact, it explores all the perennial difficult questions of life.

“But I do honestly think it was such a complete and mystifying world that a lot of people took a liking to it just for the greatness of it. It does Tolkien a disservice not to recognize that he’s such a great artist, such a great creator of an imaginary world that all sorts of people were drawn to him.”

“The sign of a classic is precisely that it stands the test of time. Tolkien’s work already stood that test because tens of millions of people are still reading his books,” he noted.

Cultural forces similar to those at work in Tolkien’s time and the popularity of Academy Award-winning director Peter Jackson’s cinematic tribute both play a part in the recent upsurge of interest in the “moral traditionalist’s” work, he added. Jackson’s latest film, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, will be released in theaters Dec. 17.

“The kind of apocalyptic dystopian novel and movie is really popular right now, and you do get that feeling in The Lord of the Rings, which is sort of the ultimate cataclysmic battle between good and evil. And with Saruman and the Orcs, you get a really unambiguous picture. Yes, he believed even the good guys are flawed and fallen, but there are good guys and bad guys. That’s the traditional view that is supposedly out of vogue.

“But the popularity of these books has actually grown. In fact, in many polls taken right around the turn of the [21st] century, The Lord of the Rings came in only second behind A Tale of Two Cities in terms of the most widely-read English books. And after the slow-growing, cultish fascination with Tolkien, the movies brought him to a whole new generation, and not just in the English-speaking world.”

However, in making films of such complex works of fiction, a lot of things necessarily got left out, Richards said. “My hope is that lots of people who otherwise would not have read Tolkien will eventually go back and read the books and discover things they wouldn’t have expected.”

SOURCE






Rev. Franklin Graham: ‘The War on Christmas’ in America is ‘A War on Christ’

Rev. Franklin Graham, son of world renowned evangelist Billy Graham, said the last few decades in America have witnessed an increased hostility towards “the sacred nature of Christmas,” a stripping away of religious references in the public square that is “at its root and core” a “war on Christ and His Followers.”

“The war on Christmas is a war on Christ,” said Rev. Graham, a “hatred” against a culture that celebrates the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh as a baby 2,000 years ago, and anticipates his second coming when, as a “conquering King,” He will “cast Satan and unbelievers into an eternal lake of fire.”

Analyzing the war on Christmas, Rev. Graham in his December commentary in Decision magazine, published by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, said, “Stores, schools and communities across America continue to find new and intolerant reasons to remove any religious references to Christmas, stripping it of any holy or historical significance. Christian songs, prayers and other spiritually vital connections to the Lord Jesus Christ are deleted or diminished.”

For example, in Ramsey County, Minn., he said, a courthouse “banned red poinsettias because someone deemed them a ‘Christian symbol,’” and in Pittsburgh the Christmas holidays are referred to “as ‘Sparkle Days,’ in an ironic attempt at avoiding offense.” Also, a VA hospital in Georgia banned “religious Christmas songs in public areas.”

Between the time that Jesus came as a baby and His second coming are “the last days,” said Rev. Graham, adding that, as the Apostle Paul wrote, the last days will be marked by “pride, brutality, treachery and heartlessness.”

“We should not be taken aback, then, when a day that should be devoted to meditating upon the marvelous, virgin birth of the Lord Jesus Christ is instead treated in a scandalously secular way that denies His deity and saving work,” said the reverend, who is the president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA).

“The Name of Christ is an offense to the unbelieving world,” he said.  “The mention of His birth, or life, or death and resurrection, is an insult. The world, the flesh and the Devil all hate the mere mention of His glorious Name. They are mortal enemies of the Savior.”

That “world system,” said Rev. Graham,  “is enthralled with power and greed, and it wants no part of the Messiah’s absolute authority.”

That rebellion against God is animated by the Devil, said Rev. Graham, the demon who, “knowing that his time to roam on Earth is short and that he will one day be cast into the lake of fire, he opposes Christ at every turn. He and his demons will help gather all the nations into a great last-ditch rebellion against the King of kings before he is defeated.”

Until that happens, however, “we should expect stiff, relentless opposition to the Gospel message from our culture,” said Rev. Graham.

He added that the brutal persecution of Christians in other countries may be “far into the future for us” in the United States, but we cannot expect “that it will not intensify and heighten.”

SOURCE





Black People the Media Hate (And Rand Paul Isn't Wild About)

By Ann Coulter

Now that the Ferguson grand jury documents have been made public, even MSNBC has had to quietly drop its fantasy of Michael Brown being gunned down like a dog in the street by Officer Darren Wilson. Instead, MSNBC is defending the looters.

On Monday night, MSNBC’s Chris Hayes objected to anyone referring to the people who “set fires or looted as ‘thugs.’”

His guest, former Seattle chief of police Norm Stamper, said, “I could not agree more.” (Stamper did such a bang-up job dealing with the World Trade Organization riots in 1999 that he was forced to resign – which may explain why he is the left’s favorite police chief.)

Hardworking black people in Ferguson poured their lives into their stores, depended on them to support their families and shopped at them to improve their quality of life. I wonder if they appreciated Hayes' principled opposition to calling the arsonists “thugs.”

Instead of exquisite sensitivity to the feelings of black thugs, how about considering the feelings of black citizens who want to live in safe neighborhoods?

There’s a reason so many black people supported Officer Wilson’s account and that a black woman walked into a burning convenience store in the middle of the riot to extinguish the fire with gallons of milk.

In “Mugged: Racial Demagoguery from the Seventies to Obama,” I told the true stories of dozens of allegedly racist crimes sensationalized by the media. In almost all of them, there were unheralded black heroes who stood up for law and order against “the community.”

When Exeter student Edmund Perry got himself killed by mugging a cop, at least a half-dozen black witnesses supported the cop’s version. While The New York Times was droning on about Perry as “a prized symbol of hope,” Perry’s black neighbors were testifying to the grand jury that his brother admitted they had mugged a cop.

At least three black friends of the Central Park rapists told the police that the defendants had confessed to attacking the jogger. (In what must have been an oversight, those witnesses didn’t make it into Ken Burns' movie.)

A young black woman, who was in Bernie Goetz’s subway car with her husband and child when Goetz shot four black muggers, told the jury, “Those punks got what they deserved.”

Goetz’s lawyer Barry Slotnick made no effort to keep blacks off the jury. His faith was rewarded: Goetz’s biggest defender on the jury was a black bus driver from Harlem. It is well known by prosecutors that working and married blacks make great jurors.

But we never hear about those black people. Why, that would spoil everything!

There are loads of movies about black criminals – rewritten the way the media were hoping the story would come out, but didn’t. (Movie: “Murder Without Motive: The Edmund Perry Story.” Spoiler alert! The tale of a racist white cop who shot an innocent black honor student for no discernible reason.)

How about a movie paying tribute to the African-American eyewitnesses in Ferguson who told the truth to the grand jury?

Who speaks for them?  It’s sure not Sen. Rand Paul.

We need video footage of blacks burning other blacks' stores down juxtaposed with clips of Sen. Paul saying that the reason “three out of four people in prison are black or brown” may be “because of the color of their skin or their economic status.” Another possibility – I’m just throwing it out there – is that the reason black, brown or white people are in prison is because they’ve committed crimes.

Improving their “economic status” doesn’t seem to help. The two men arrested for trying to buy bombs in Ferguson in order to blow up the Gateway Arch and kill the prosecutor and chief of police were prevented from buying as many bombs as they had hoped because they needed to wait for more money to be transferred onto a girlfriend’s EBT card (Electronic Benefits Card – food stamps).

For claiming the drug laws are racist, Sen. Paul seems to imagine his portrait is being hung in black homes across America, between pictures of Martin Luther King and John F. Kennedy. “White people do drugs too,” Paul tells admiring white liberals in the media, “but either they don’t get caught or they have better attorneys or they don’t live in poverty.”

If Rand Paul thinks black people are rooting for black crack dealers to go free, he’s even crazier than his old man.

It was African-Americans, exploding in rage at the devastation crack was inflicting on their neighborhoods in the 1980s, who demanded severe penalties for crack cocaine. In a typical news story from 1986, Julius Lee, the black city commissioner in Fort Pierce, Florida, said, “Drugs are terrible things, but these cocaine rocks are the terriblest of the terrible.” Black grocer Eugene Gibson sadly remarked, while sweeping the sidewalk in front of his store, “We’re in a world of trouble here. … It’s these cocaine rocks.”

A few years later, in 1989, black columnist Dorothy Gaiter perfectly expressed the feelings of the (non-crack dealing) black community in The Miami Herald: “Crack sellers should be locked up and their bounty taken away from them. The jails are crowded with murderers and others who deserve to be there, but the crack seller is a murderer too. He’s a lethal seducer of our young, a destroyer of our neighborhoods. Being poor is no crime and should not result in a sentence to live among the lawless.”

But now Sen. Paul is pushing the idea that the drug laws black people begged for were actually part of a racist plot to lock up African-Americans. It’s like something out of Maxine Waters' dream journal.

The only people impressed with Rand Paul’s defense of black criminals are the ones who will never be victimized by them.

SOURCE

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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

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5 December, 2014

A corrupt and vicious health bureaucracy in Britain

A renowned heart specialist who raised the alarm over a hospital's failings was unfairly dismissed in a calculated attempt to damage his reputation, a tribunal has ruled.

Consultant cardiologist Dr Kevin Beatt has won a two-year legal battle with Croydon Health Services NHS Trust, which sacked him in September 2012 after he raised the alarm about staffing shortages, 'appalling' equipment and workplace bullying.

He voiced his concerns following the death of heart patient Gerald Storey, 63, at Croydon University Hospital in June 2011.

It was a routine angioplasty, an inquest heard in 2013, but a senior nurse had been suspended hours earlier - without Dr Beatt's knowledge - and her absence contributed to the patient's death.

Dr Beatt, a renowned specialist who led the hospital's well-regarded department for interventional heart procedures from 2007, should have been afforded protected whistleblower status but instead lost his job in a case he claimed provided a damning demonstration of the trust's attempts to cover up failings.

The trust argued it dismissed him 'for making unsubstantiated and unproven allegations of an unsafe service', but the employment tribunal ruled there was 'no consistent evidence' of gross misconduct and chief executive John Goulston, whose evidence it criticised as inconsistent, had 'failed to carry out a fair process'.

Between 2008 and his dismissal, Dr Beatt raised a catalogue of concerns about inadequate equipment, bullying and harassment of junior employees, removal of key staff, a lack of competent nurses and the failure to properly investigate serious incidents.

In January 2010 he voiced serious fears to medical director Tony Newman-Sanders that the cardiology unit's radiation equipment, then the oldest in use in the country, was putting patients and staff at risk.

He was accused of fabricating his concerns so he could treat patients elsewhere, but six months later the machinery was condemned and replaced after breaking down during an operation.

The friction came to a head in July the next year, when a 63-year-old patient died during a routine procedure after a senior nurse was suspended without Dr Beatt's knowledge.

Dr Beatt, who was left for 20 minutes without a nurse with even basic familiarity with the operation, described the suspension as 'the most overtly reckless act' he had witnessed in his career.

The trust claimed Dr Beatt's criticisms were 'vexatious' and calculated to ensure Sister Jones's restoration, and in September 2011 began disciplinary proceedings that culminated in his sacking.

The tribunal found there was 'no evidence' Dr Beatt had an ulterior motive and that 'extremely damaging' and 'entirely false' allegations were levelled at him during an investigation into Mr Storey's death.

Those included claims by Dr Asif Qasim, the hospital's clinical lead for medical specialities that Mr Beatt was mentally unstable.

Employment judge Gill Sage, who chaired the tribunal, added she believed a 'misleading' press statement about Mr Beatt's dismissal, issued following the inquest 10 months later, had been 'calculated and was likely to cause damage to his reputation'.

Speaking after the tribunal's ruling, Dr Beatt said: 'Essentially they ignored some of the statements made to the serious untoward incident report and submitted their own version.  'There's no doubt in my mind that, if things have gone badly wrong, instead of saying things have gone badly wrong, they try to cover it up.

'At the end of the day it is in order to misrepresent events to the patient and their relatives.'

He added the legal battle and the trust's decision to refer him to the General Medical Council had taken 'a very considerable toll' on him and left him unable to find work within the NHS.

He said: 'That's why they do it. They do it because it will prevent me from getting a job and that will prevent me from pursuing them in court because I won't be able to afford the costs.'

Dr Beatt said he believed the trust had spent 'more than £100,000' fighting his case, which he was only able to pursue because his lawyers Linklaters agreed to work pro bono.

A spokesman for Croydon Health Services NHS Trust said it would appeal the ruling.  He added: 'We are clearly very disappointed with the tribunal's decision. 'We take all concerns about patient safety extremely seriously, as well as allegations of bullying against any of our employees.

'It is everyone's responsibility at CHS to uphold great care for patients, and for our staff to know that they will be listened to and supported.'

SOURCE






European court: asking asylum seekers to prove sexuality is breach of human rights

Gay and lesbian asylum seekers must not be asked to prove they are homosexual in order to stay in Britain, following a judgement by a European court yesterday.

Asking refugees detailed questions about their sexual habits in order to establish whether they are at risk of persecution at home is a breach of their fundamental human right to a private life, the European Court of Justice ruled.

In a decision that may force the Home Office to tighten up its interview rules, the court ruled that immigration officials must not accept explicit photographs or videos submitted by asylum seekers to prove their sexuality.

Home Office guidelines say that asylum officials must not request such images, but material that is volunteered is examined as part of a claim and stored.

In a ruling that may have implications on British cases, the court said an asylum seeker's failure to answer questions about their personal circumstances was not sufficient reason to reject their credibility.

Nor was an applicant's failure to declare his homosexuality from the start grounds to reject a claim, the judges said.

In 2013 some 283 people claimed asylum in Britain on the grounds that they were at risk overseas because they are gay or lesbian. Many cases come from African states whether homosexuality is subject to the death penalty.

Home Office guidelines say that claimants should “establish to a reasonable degree of likelihood” their sexuality, and that a person’s declared sexuality should be taken as a “starting point” in a case.

The guidelines tell interviewers to avoid asking “prurient questions” about sexual preferences or physical attractiveness.

However, a recent official investigation found that these rules have been flouted by immigration officials. John Vine, the Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration, found border officials had broken the rules by asking claimants about the frequency and number of sexual partners.

Officials had also asked about the differences between gay and straight relationships, asking one man what he could find in a relationship with a man that was absent from a heterosexual arrangement.

The report also found that officials frequently examine footage or photographs submitted prove a claimant's sexuality, and it criticised the lax privacy controls on retained material.

The report followed a case, highlighted in the Observer newspaper, where interviewing officers had asked graphic and sexually explicit questions in order to test an asylum seeker’s claim.

Such questioning would likely fall foul of human rights laws, following yesterday’s ruling which applies in all EU states.

The court ruled in the case of three men, including a Ugandan, who failed in a bid for asylum after a Dutch court said they had not proved their sexuality.

The court ruled that evidence of homosexual acts submitted on film infringed human digity, even if it was proposed by the asylum applicant. It warned that by accepting such material, asylum seekers would be “incited” to do the same and it would become a de facto requirement of a successful claim.

The judgement said: "While the national authorities are entitled to carry out, where appropriate, interviews in order to determine the facts and circumstances as regards the declared sexual orientation of an applicant for asylum, questions concerning details of the sexual practices of that applicant are contrary to the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Charter and, in particular, to the right to respect for private and family life."

It also ruled that asking claimants to submit to “tests” over their sexuality are a breach of human rights.

Futhermore, applicants cannot be asked questions that are based on “stereotyped notions” of gay behaviour.

Ruling that failure to disclose their sexuality at the outset does not undermine a plea for asylum, the judgement of the Luxembourg court said: "Having regard to the sensitive nature of questions relating to a person’s personal identity and, in particular, his sexuality, it cannot be concluded that the declared sexuality lacks credibility simply because, due to his reticence in revealing intimate aspects of his life, that person did not declare his homosexuality at the outset."

A Home Office spokesperson said: "The UK has a proud history of granting asylum to those who seek refuge by establishing a genuine need for our protection.

“We have never required asylum seekers to undergo tests to prove their sexuality. Our guidance and training on handling claims based on sexual orientation was developed in conjunction with Stonewall, the UK Lesbian and Gay Immigration Group and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.”

SOURCE





Pregnant women who drink will NOT be criminalised after child left brain damaged when her mother drank half a bottle of vodka and eight cans of lager a day loses test case for compensation

A very dubious verdict -- based on the unborn child not being a person

Women who drink alcohol while pregnant will not be criminalised after a landmark ruling today.

It comes after a test case held at the Court of Appeal ruled that a young child is not entitled to criminal injuries compensation after her mother drank half a bottle of vodka and eight cans of lager a day while she was pregnant with her.

The girl, now six, was born with foetal alcohol syndrome and suffered growth retardation as a result of her mother's drinking.

Lawyers for child 'CP', who cannot be named for legal reasons, had asked three judges to rule in a test case that the girl is entitled to compensation.

But the appeal judges unanimously ruled: 'The central reason is that we have held that a mother who is pregnant and who drinks to excess despite knowledge of the potential harmful consequence to the child of doing so is not guilty of a criminal offence under our law if her child is subsequently born damaged as a result.'

If the appeal had succeeded it could have paved the way for pregnant women's behaviour to be criminalised, according to the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (Bpas) and Birthrights.

Lawyers for the child say that view was 'misplaced speculation'.

Ann Furedi, chief executive of the Bpas, and Rebecca Schiller, co-chair of Birthrights, welcomed the court's unanimous decision, saying: 'This is an extremely important ruling for women everywhere.  'The UK's highest courts have recognised that women must be able to make their own decisions about their pregnancies.'

The appeal judges heard that a large number of similar claims for compensation by children allegedly harmed by alcohol in the womb were awaiting the outcome of CP's appeal, with solicitors already instructed in around 80 cases.

Lord Dyson, the Master of the Rolls, sitting with Lord Justice Treacy and Lady Justice King, considered the case recently at a one-day hearing.

The judges were told that the mother was drinking 'an enormous amount' while pregnant with CP, including a half-bottle of vodka and eight cans of strong lager a day, and the child was born with an alcohol-related disease.

John Foy QC, appearing for CP, said that was the equivalent of 40-57 units of alcohol a day. Guidelines issued by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) were that 7.5 units might damage a foetus.

Mr Foy was representing a council in the North West of England which now has responsibility for CP and was seeking an award on her behalf under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme.

He said the mother 'was aware of the dangers to her baby of her excessive consumption during pregnancy'.  He added: 'She was reckless as to whether there would be harm to the foetus. She foresaw that harm might be caused but went on to take the risk.'

CP was born in June 2007 with foetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD), also referred to as foetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). It can cause retarded growth, facial abnormalities and intellectual impairment.

Her compensation claim was based on the assertion that her mother had committed an offence against her as defined under the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 by drinking excessively during pregnancy.

Ben Collins, appearing for the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA), asked the court to reject CP's legal challenge.

He told the judges: 'There is a conflict of ideas about what is or is not dangerous, not only in terms of drink but also in terms of smoking and food.'

Mr Collins asked whether 'a pregnant mother who eats unpasteurised cheese or a soft boiled egg knowing there is a risk that it could give rise to a risk of harm to the foetus' might also find herself accused of a crime.

CP's compensation application was initially rejected by the CICA in November 2009 on the grounds that she had not sustained an injury 'directly attributable to a crime of violence', as required by the Offences Against the Person Act.

A first-tier tribunal allowed her initial appeal but the Upper Tribunal of the Administrative Appeals Chamber ruled last December that the law required a crime to be committed against an individual 'person' - and a child did not become a person until birth.

The Upper Tribunal concluded: 'If (the girl) was not a person while her mother was engaging in the relevant actions then, as a matter of law, her mother could not have committed a criminal offence.'

Asking the appeal judges to quash the Upper Tribunal decision, Mr Foy argued CP had been a person entitled to compensation while still a foetus and the crime committed against had similar ingredients to manslaughter.

Alternatively, she became entitled to an award when she was born and was suffering the continuing consequences of her alcoholic mother's drinking.

Dismissing CP's appeal, Lord Justice Treacy said an 'essential ingredient' for a crime to be committed 'is the infliction of grievous bodily harm on a person - grievous bodily harm on a foetus will not suffice'.

SOURCE






Australian wine called "72 Virgins" sold as fundraiser for anti-Islamic organisation, Q Society

A BAROSSA wine called Hal & Al’s 72 Virgins is being sold as a fundraiser for an anti-Islamic movement that is worried about a “culture war”.  The virgins are a reference to the rewards jihadis believe they will receive in Paradise once they kill others and themselves.

Profits from the “fine Australian sparkling wine” will go to the Q Society, which bills itself as “Australia’s Leading Islam-critical Movement”.

The Q Society warns that Islam is linked to discrimination and violence and run lectures teaching about “the true nature of this totalitarian theocratic ideology”.

They could not tell The Advertiser which winery produced the 72 Virgins, but said they put the labels on themselves.

“With our own special label … this is a guaranteed conversation starter and lighthearted take on an otherwise serious subject,” the advertisement reads.  “Satire and a good laugh are valuable weapons in this culture war.”

Q Society President Debbie Robinson said sales were going well and people were stocking up for Christmas.  “I think it’s a little bit tongue in cheek … not something that’s meant to be taken too seriously,” she said.

Asked whether she thought people might find it offensive she said people were “offended by all sorts of things”.  “I don’t find it offensive. Everyone’s an individual,” she said.

Ms Robinson said the funds would help them bring in overseas speakers.  “We are involved with educating Australians about the Islamisation of the country,” she said.

One of the controversial speakers the Q Society has brought to Australia is Dutch MP Geert Wilders, who has called for a ban on building mosques and an end to Muslim immigration. He has referred to Islam as a “great sickness”.

SOURCE

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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

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4 December, 2014

Another female false acuser in Britain

It's hard to see why this case made its way into court

A pupil who has accused a married RE teacher of having sex with her is a self-confessed 'liar' who pretended she was in a car accident, a court today heard.

Stuart Kerner, 44, is accused of having sex with the teenager in empty classrooms and cleaning cupboards all over their school during an 18 month affair.

His alleged victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is a former student at Bexleyheath Academy in south east London.

She was 15 when the affair is said to have begun. But today teachers at the school said the pupil was a 'proven liar'.

Librarian Marion King told Inner London Crown Court: 'As she got older she got very cocky and thought everybody fancied her. 'She went around saying "I can do what I like, I'm special".'

Mrs King told jurors the schoolgirl had pretended to be involved in a car accident to get out of PE classes.  She turned up to school with a bandage around her chest in the elaborate charade, the court heard. Teachers eventually discovered from her mother that there had been no accident.

Mrs King said: 'She said doctors found a problem with her heart. I said "Oh my God are you OK?"  'She said she couldn't do PE anymore. She had bandages all around her chest and said she had a tube put inside. She unwrapped her bandage and had a bloody line around three inches long.'

Mrs King said she was moved to tears by the story, but later discovered it was a lie.

She said: 'She came into my office and I said "What is going on?".  'She said: "I lie - that's what I do".  'She couldn't seem to grasp what she had done. It was shocking to me.'

Mrs King said other pupils joked that the schoolgirl 'stalked' Kerner.

She said: 'I thought Mr Kerner ought to be very wary of her. I think she had a crush on him and I said he needed to be careful because I think she has a massive crush on you.

'A couple of students commented on it. They said she is stalking him. I think she is very manipulative. She lied to me.'

When she was contacted by police, Mrs King said she thought the allegations were 'rubbish' and branded the pupil a 'psychopathic liar'.

She said: 'You have got a girl who is a proven liar saying unbelievable lies.  'I think she's a very sick girl. I think there is something wrong with her.'

PE teacher Les Ainsworth said the schoolgirl showed 'no remorse' when she was caught out lying.  He said: 'She was an attention seeker. Not only from her peers but from her teachers as well.'

He added: 'When she came into the office I found her manipulative and quite tactile.'

The PE teacher said he was told by two pupils in around May 2012 that the schoolgirl had told people she was having a relationship with Kerner.  He chose to have a word with Kerner about the claims, but did not report it higher, jurors heard. Pressed on why he did not take the matter higher, he said: 'My decision at that time was to have a word with Stuart.'

Kerner denies the allegations.

SOURCE






It was a shopping spree, not a zombie apocalypse

The snobs freaking out about Black Friday need to calm down

I wish Britain’s bien pensant press would make its bloody mind up when it comes to the nation’s poor. At the moment, the great and good of the comment pages seem caught between two competing moralisms. In one vision, Britain’s lower orders are foraging for grains in the crags of ‘late capitalism’, struggling to make ends meet and lining up outside food banks in the hope of feeding their malnourished young. In the other, they’re all obese shut-ins, sat in the glow of their flat-screens with discarded Greggs bags stuck to their trackies. So what are they? The pitied or the pitiable? The blessed meek or the brainwashed fat?

Well, this past week, it seemed to be the latter. Black Friday, a discount retail promotion imported from America, set tills ringing and the ground rumbling as Brits jostled for bargains in retail-park superstores across the nation. Worth an estimated £500million in UK sales, Black Friday – and its attendant online version, Cyber Monday – is the perfect marketing combination: a big, attention-grabbing gimmick along with a genuinely good deal. Retailers including Tesco, Asda, Amazon and John Lewis reduced big-ticket items by as much as 40 per cent and – surprise, surprise – people turned out in droves to get in on the action. Simple as.

But if you read the coverage, you’d have got a very different picture. Footage of skirmishes in Glasgow, London and Manchester were plastered over the news. There were reports of biting, punching and kicking and one poor woman having a TV dropped on her head in the mêlée. Then there was the inevitable brow-furrowing. It was ‘a national embarrassment, akin to a retail feeding frenzy’, said Barbara Ellen in the Observer; it was a metaphor for ‘the greedy capitalism that is making us so fat’, said Yasmin Alibhai-Brown in the Independent; it was the ‘dystopian conclusion of a hyper-consumerist pathology’, said James Dyke in the Conversation.

It seems the desire of normal British people to save some cash in the run-up to the festive season has been imbued with a quasi-religious significance. It was, in Ellen’s words, ‘shaming’ – a sign of the shallow, step-over-your-own-grandmother selfishness of our age. But when you look beyond the headlines it all becomes a lot more innocent. Aside from the scarce and unconfirmed reports of violence, it all looked like, well, a bit of fun. People were smiling – enjoying the rough and tumble. It was a Tesco-set mosh pit with the added bonus of a bargain at the end of it.

What these commentators were objecting to was hoi polloi consumer culture itself. For these people, the desire of ordinary Brits to own nice things and make life just that little bit more plush sticks in the craw. It’s soulless, it’s not eco-friendly and it’s shallow, they say. This is anti-‘Essex man’ snobbery taken to grotesque extremes and it’s all too common – especially around Christmas. The Roses tins, the mass-produced presents, the Christmas-themed Stella cans – these are the tacky signs of a slovenly society, apparently. Rather than celebrate the fact that most people no longer wake up on Christmas morning to find a lone orange in their stocking, observers seek political justifications for turning their noses up.

There’s a debate to be had about consumerism. The fact that today people increasingly define themselves by what they buy rather than what they do speaks to an absence of political and moral purpose in society. But Black Friday patrons are hardly the worst offenders. They want to buy nice things, while the well-fed columnists castigating them sing the praises of buying the right kind of things – things that are secondhand, ethical and good for the planet. Since when has the contents of your shopping trolley become a window into the soul? How shallow.

SOURCE





You cannot ‘have it all’ – British government tells women

Women should not believe it is possible to “have it all” combining a successful career, motherhood and beauty, a report published by the Coalition’s Minister for Women and Equalities insists.

Many mothers are also actively damaging their daughters by “foisting” their own thwarted and “entirely unrealistic” ambitions on them, the study commissioned by the Liberal Democrat minister Jo Swinson claims.

It also argues that women unwittingly “transmit” potentially crippling anxieties about their appearance and weight to their own daughters from birth, stunting their career prospects in the process.

In many cases this is done through subtle signals about their bodies which the women “sensed” from their own mothers as babies, it claims.

Parenting groups voiced dismay at the characterisation of young mothers as dangerously “pushy” and bitter.  But Ms Swinson, who wrote the foreword to the report, insisted it “shines a welcome light”on the pressures girls face.

The controversy centres on a study drawing together evidence about the effects of body anxiety on girls commissioned by Ms Swinson and compiled by the Centre for Appearance Research at the University of the West of England (UWE)  [Wot dat??].

It cites a series of polls suggesting that around one in five girls deliberately avoid putting their hand up to speak in class because they are afraid of drawing attention to their appearance and that one in seven would even avoid school for the same reason.

The report argues that body image and self-esteem are serious barriers to success for many would-be high achieving girls and estimates that Britain’s economy is being deprived of the contributions of an estimated about 200,000 more businesswomen.

It goes on to claim that mothers are subconsciously passing on their own body issues to their daughters in a seemingly endless “circle of appearance anxiety and body distress”.

And it adds: “Today there is a cultural rhetoric of girls and women ‘having it all’ and ‘going out there’. “These exhortations impinge on girls and on mothers in ways that create excitement and anxiety.  “They make it sound as though women can have it all at all times.  “This is entirely unrealistic and sets up expectations in complex ways within the mother daughter relationship and in women in general.

“It may include a mother’s inadvertent foisting on a daughter, ambitions that, for the mother, remains personally unfulfilled.

“Such ambitions may not sufficiently arm the next generation for the realities of the world and so when young women fail to meet the ambition they can feel shame and confusion, which in turn inhibits their economic activity.”

Siobhan Freegard, co-founder of the parenting website Netmums said: “I honestly don’t recognise that – it is very strong language, it’s not helpful and it’s not realistic.

“All I can say is that I have not seen that - we all know the odd pushy parent, the tiger mother, but the vast majority seem relaxed and do not want to put pressure on their children.

“Of course you want your child to achieve their full potential but nobody wants to push their child beyond – that’s the beauty of being a parent, that you see your child blossom into this individual.”

She added: “If anything this is a generation too late and it is not borne out.  “What I’m seeing is that it is today’s mums who were told they could 'have it all' have already realised that they have been fed a lie.

“Femminism was about how you could have it all and we are discovering that we are doing it all instead.”

Ms Swinson said: “This report shines a welcome light on what happens to girls’ aspirations and confidence when they are constantly distracted by how they appear to others.

“There is a lot of focus on the anxiety poor body image causes to young people, but much less attention on how its effects can spill out across all areas of life.

“This report forces us to consider how much creativity, energy and ambition would be unlocked if we could relieve girls from the unwavering, critical scrutiny of a society obsessed with a narrow and unrealistic ideal of beauty.”

The lead author, Dr Emma Halliwell, senior lecturer in psychology at UWE, said: “By ignoring this issue, we all become complicit in reinforcing these damaging messages.  “By actively challenging this overemphasis on appearance we can improve the lives of both women and men.”

SOURCE






Christmas shoppers should not buy gender based toys for kids, Australian Greens say



GREENS Senator Larissa Waters has urged Christmas shoppers to rethink buying bright pink jewellery or dolls for little girls, linking gender-stereotyped toys to domestic violence and pay inequality.

The minor party’s gender spokeswoman has endorsed the ‘No Gender December’ campaign, set up by grassroots group Play Unlimited, which calls on retailers to stop using old-fashioned gender stereotypes as marketing ploys this Christmas.

It warns aisles of pink and blue merchandise, while seemingly harmless, can lead to serious social problems including violence against women and children.

The campaign has already come under fire from leading child psychologist Michael Carr-Gregg, who labelled it “a nail in the coffin of common sense” and said there was no research to indicate ‘gender-stereotyped’ toys were unhealthy for children.

But Senator Waters said shoppers should stop and think about how toys are being marketed to children this Christmas.

“While the starkly separate aisles of pink and blue might seem harmless, especially to well-meaning rellies and friends, setting such strong gender stereotypes at early ages can have long-term impacts, including influencing self-perception and career aspirations,” Senator Waters said.

“Out-dated stereotypes about girls and boys and men and women, perpetuate gender inequality, which feeds into very serious problems such as domestic violence and the gender pay gap,” she said.

“While such serious problems seem so far removed from choosing children’s toys, it’s important that we think about this issue, especially when so many children’s toys are being bought.”

The web-based campaign is asking shoppers to sign an online pledge declaring their commitment to boycotting gifts that play to gender stereotypes — which could include Barbie dolls for girls, or monster trucks for boys.

It also wants federal parliamentarians to introduce legislation that would ban retailers from marketing toys to children along gender lines.

It is understood the Greens have not yet formed a position on whether the minor party would support any legislative changes.

One of the campaign’s organisers, Thea Hughes, said while there was nothing wrong with either girls or boys playing with dolls, parents needed to be aware of the dangers of indoctrinating children into thinking about gender in a certain way.

“If you are talking about adults, gender stereotyping is completely unacceptable, it should be the same for kids,” Ms Hughes, a mother of two boys, said.

Play Unlimited has seized on research from Purdue University in the American state of Indiana which found strongly gender-stereotyped toys did not support children’s development as much as gender-neutral toys.

But Dr Carr-Gregg said parents should not start fretting if their son wants a remote control car or their daughter wants a doll.

“These gender differences are hard wired, and while I’m sure socialisation plays a role, to argue that toys in any way relate to domestic violence is, I think, too far a stretch,” he said.

“It’s a nail in the coffin of common sense.”

SOURCE

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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

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3 December, 2014

Good riddance to bad rubbish



She was in charge of the "totally chaotic" operation which led to British police shooting dead an innocent electrician who was just minding his own business but looked "woggy".  Anyone else who goofed so badly would have been at least demoted.  Why did she skate free?  For the same reason she got such a responsible job in the first place:  Because she is an open Lesbian.  And homosexuals are a privileged class.  Pity about the man her bungling caused to be shot, though!  I have observed that masculine-appearing women are often over-confident of their abilities so putting her in charge of anything was a risk.  Reading between the lines below, however, she has now been eased out -- probably for other incidents of incompetence

Cressida Dick,? ?the senior police officer? ?who headed the operation ?which led to the death of Jean Charles de Menezes, is quitting Scotland Yard after 31 years.

Her departure for? ?an undisclosed security role at the? ?Foreign and Commonwealth Office comes just months after she was moved from a key counter-terror role at the Metropolitan? ?Police.

As the? ?assistant commissioner in charge of specialist operations, including counter-terrorism, between 2011 and this summer,? ?Miss Dick? is? ?one of? ? Britain's? ?most senior? ?female police officers.

However,? ?a reorganisation saw her? ?put in charge of specialist crime?, including overseeing investigations into murder and sexual offences.

M?is?s Dick, ?54, was ?in charge of a surveillance operation which led to the ? fatal police ?shooting of? ?Mr de Menezes?, a Brazilian electrician, when he was mistaken for a suicide bomber? ?in the wake of the failed July 21 bomb attacks on London's transport network?.

Miss Dick g?ave evidence at a trial ?connected with the shooting and at ?an inquest ?in 2008, when she came close to tears as she described the "horrible'' and "terrible'' tragedy.

The?? control room ?of which she was in charge was said to be "very noisy and quite chaotic" by one witness.

She denied that she gave an order that Mr de Menezes must be stopped from getting on to a train at Stockwell "at all costs" and also denied instructing the firearms teams to use lethal force to stop him.

SOURCE





As two-parent families decline, income inequality grows

by Jeff Jacoby

FEW POLITICAL debates in this country are as freighted with emotional, cultural, and ideological baggage as those that touch on the choices people make in forming families. When public discourse turns to decisions about wedlock and child-rearing — think of Daniel Patrick Moynihan's 1965 report on "the breakdown of the Negro family," or the uproar over Murphy Brown during the 1992 presidential race, or the modern push for same-sex marriage — civility is too often swept away amid a storm of hurt feelings and self-righteousness.

All the more reason, then, to welcome two recent studies — one national in scope, one focused on Massachusetts — on the effects of single parenthood and the decline in marriage. Both lay out the data with clarity, while avoiding moralizing or disapproval.

One report, aptly titled "For Richer, For Poorer," is by sociologist W. Bradford Wilcox of the American Enterprise Institute and economist Robert I. Lerman of the Urban Institute. It documents the profound links that connect family structure and financial well-being, and underscores what decades of empirical data have shown: Families headed by married couples tend to be much stronger economically than those headed by unwed single parents.

"Anyone concerned about family inequality, men's declining labor-force participation, and the vitality of the American dream should worry about the nation's retreat from marriage," the authors write. The steady fall in the percentage of married two-parent households — from 78 percent in 1980 to 66 percent in 2012 — goes a long way toward explaining why so many ordinary families have trouble climbing beyond the lower rungs on the economic ladder. Correlation isn't proof of causation, of course. But there is no refuting the strong association between growing up with both parents in an intact family and achieving higher levels of education, work, and income as young adults.

Wilcox and Lerman put dollar amounts to the "intact-family premium" reaped by those who are raised by their own biological or adoptive parents. By age 28 to 30, for example, men from such backgrounds are earning on average $6,500 more per year in personal income than their peers from single-parent homes. And since growing up with both parents increases one's likelihood of marrying as an adult, men and women who were raised by married parents tend to enjoy much higher family incomes as well — in the case of that 28- to 30-year-old male, more than $16,000 higher, on average. (Among all married adults who were raised in a two-parent home, the annual average "family premium" is higher still: $42,000 more when compared to their counterparts from single-parent families.)

To be sure, not all families headed by married parents are stable or successful, and not all children raised by single parents struggle economically or professionally. Barack Obama, who was two years old when he was abandoned by his father, is dramatic evidence of that.

But as Obama himself says, the data aren't in question. "Children who grow up without a father are more likely to live in poverty. They're more likely to drop out of school. They're more likely to wind up in prison. They're more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol."

As the second study documents, these unhappy trends haven't bypassed Massachusetts.

In recent decades, the fraction of Bay State children in single-parent homes has risen to more than one in three. While the state's marriage rate has plummeted — there were 49,000 Bay State marriages in 1980 vs. fewer than 36,000 in 2011 — the rate of out-of-wedlock births has soared. The Massachusetts Family Institute, in a report replete with just-the-facts-ma'am statistics, lays out the economic and social costs.

"The increase in fatherless families is a significant contributor to income inequality," it notes. In 2013, the median Massachusetts income for married-couple households with children was $114,376. For households headed by single mothers, it was just $26,999. Citing data from the National Survey of Children's Health, the report observes that only 6 percent of children in married-couple homes have no parent who works full-time. For kids being raised by never-married single mothers, the comparable figure is 46 percent.

There is no finger-wagging or blame in these reports, just the numbers — and compassion. The child poverty rate is so much steeper in single-parent homes than in two-parent homes, and it is heartbreaking that so many young people raised in fatherless families will have such trouble climbing out of poverty as they grow older.

Income inequality may or may not be "the defining challenge of our time," as Obama and others have proclaimed. But the most significant driver of that inequality — the biggest impediment to upward economic mobility — isn't hard to identify. The higher the fraction of children not being raised by their married parents, the more of our fellow citizens for whom the American Dream is likely to remain beyond reach.

SOURCE







Quite an eye opener about Muslim influence
 
Here is a perspective by Dr Peter Hammond. Dr Hammond's doctorate is in Theology.  He was born in Cape Town in 1960, grew up in Rhodesia and converted to Christianity in 1977.
 
Islam is not a religion, nor is it a cult. In its fullest form, it is a complete, total, 100% system of life.

Islam has religious, legal, political, economic, social, and military components. The religious component is a beard for all of the other components.

Islamisation begins when there are sufficient Muslims in a country to agitate for their religious privileges.

When politically correct, tolerant, and culturally diverse societies agree to Muslim demands for their religious privileges, some of the other components tend to creep in as well.

Here's how it works:

As long as the Muslim population remains around or under 2% in any given country, they will be for the most part be regarded as a peace-loving minority, and not as a threat to other citizens. This is the case in:

United States -- Muslim 0.6%
Australia -- Muslim 1.5%
Canada -- Muslim 1.9%
China -- Muslim 1.8%
Italy -- Muslim 1.5%
Norway -- Muslim 1.8%

At 2% to 5%, they begin to proselytize from other ethnic minorities and disaffected groups, often with major recruiting from the jails and among street gangs.

This is happening in:

Denmark -- Muslim 2%
Germany -- Muslim 3.7%
United Kingdom -- Muslim 2.7%
Spain -- Muslim 4%
Thailand -- Muslim 4.6%

From 5% on, they exercise an inordinate influence in proportion to their percentage of the population.

For example, they will push for the introduction of halal (clean by Islamic standards) food, thereby securing food preparation jobs for Muslims.

They will increase pressure on supermarket chains to feature halal on their shelves -- along with threats for failure to comply.

This is occurring in:

France -- Muslim 8%
Philippines -- 5%
Sweden -- Muslim 5%
Switzerland -- Muslim 4.3%
The Netherlands -- Muslim 5.5%
Trinidad & Tobago -- Muslim 5.8%

At this point, they will work to get the ruling government to allow them to rule themselves (within their ghettos) under Sharia, the Islamic Law.

The ultimate goal of Islamists is to establish Sharia law over the entire world.

When Muslims approach 10% of the population, they tend to increase lawlessness as a means of complaint about their conditions.

In Paris, we are already seeing car-burnings.
Any non Muslim action offends Islam, and results in uprisings and threats, such as in Amsterdam, with opposition to Mohammed cartoons and films about Islam.

Such tensions are seen daily, particularly in Muslim sections, in:

Guyana -- Muslim 10%
India -- Muslim 13.4%
Israel -- Muslim 16%
Kenya -- Muslim 10%
Russia -- Muslim 15%

After reaching 20%, nations can expect hair-trigger rioting, jihad militia formations, sporadic killings, and the burnings of Christian churches and Jewish synagogues, such as in:

Ethiopia -- Muslim 32.8%

At 40%, nations experience widespread massacres, chronic terror attacks, and on-going militia warfare, such as in:
Bosnia -- Muslim 40%
Chad -- Muslim 53.1%
Lebanon -- Muslim 59.7%

From 60%, nations experience unfettered persecution of non-believers of all other religions "(including non-conforming Muslims), sporadic ethnic cleansing (genocide), use of Sharia Law as a weapon, and Jizya, "the tax placed on infidels, such as in:
Albania -- Muslim 70%
Malaysia -- Muslim 60.4%
Qatar -- Muslim 77.5%
Sudan -- Muslim 70%

After 80%, expect daily intimidation and violent jihad, some State-run ethnic cleansing, and even some genocide, as these nations drive out the infidels, and move toward 100% Muslim, such as has been experienced and in some ways is on-going in:
Bangladesh -- Muslim 83%
Egypt -- Muslim 90%
Gaza -- Muslim 98.7%
Indonesia -- Muslim 86.1%
Iran -- Muslim 98%
Iraq -- Muslim 97%
Jordan -- Muslim 92%
Morocco -- Muslim 98.7%
Pakistan -- Muslim 97%
Palestine -- Muslim 99%
Syria -- Muslim 90%
Tajikistan -- Muslim 90%
Turkey -- Muslim 99.8%
United Arab Emirates -- Muslim 96%

100% will usher in the peace of 'Dar-es-Salaam' -- the Islamic House of Peace.

Here there's supposed to be peace, because everybody is a Muslim, the Madrassas are the only schools, and the Koran is the only word, such as in:
Afghanistan -- Muslim 100%
Saudi Arabia -- Muslim 100%
Somalia -- Muslim 100%
Yemen -- Muslim 100%

Unfortunately, peace is never achieved, a s in these 100% states the most radical Muslims intimidate and spew hatred, and satisfy their blood lust by killing less radical Muslims, for a variety of reasons.

'Before I was nine I had learned the basic canon of Arab life.
It was me against my brother; me and my brother against our father; my family against my cousins and the clan; the clan against the tribe; the tribe against the world, and all of us against the infidel. -- Leon Uris, 'The Haj'

It is important to understand that in some countries, with well under 100% Muslim populations, such as France, the minority Muslim populations live in ghettos, within which they are 100% Muslim,
and within which they live by Sharia Law.

The national police do not even enter these ghettos.

There are no national courts, nor schools, nor non-Muslim religious facilities. In such situations, Muslims do not integrate into the community at large.

The children attend madrassas. They learn only the Koran.
To even associate with an infidel is a crime punishable with death.

Therefore, in some areas of certain nations, Muslim Imams and extremists exercise more power  than the national average would indicate.

Today's 1.5 billion Muslims make up 22% of the world's population.
But their birth rates dwarf the birth rates of Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, and all other believers.

Muslims will exceed 50% of the world's population by the end of this century.

Adapted from Dr Peter Hammond's book: Slavery, Terrorism and Islam:  The Historical Roots and Contemporary Threat






Australia: Major faiths oppose policies of new Leftist government in the State of Victoria

The release below went out before the election but the Labor party won the election by a big margin so the churches now have a real worry about the matters below

The Labor and Greens proposal to change Equal Opportunity laws to allow judges to decide fundamental religious doctrines, beliefs and principles of faith, in order to promote equal opportunity, has created an unprecedented alliance. The policies of the Labor Party on this issue are highlighted in the recently released  Christian Values Checklist for the Victorian election on Saturday 29th November 2014.

The Catholic, Anglican, Coptic Orthodox, Lutheran, Baptist and Presbyterian churches have all joined together to call upon the parties contesting the Victorian elections to maintain the current fair and balanced Equal Opportunity laws. Jewish Rabbis and Muslim Imams have also publicly expressed their concern.

1.  Rabbi Mark Shimon + Catholic and Islamic Leaders speak out:

2.  YouTube Rev Mark Durie:

3.   Combined Church Statement:   

"The right to religious freedom of faith-based organisations, such as schools, hospitals, charities, welfare agencies, counselling and support services to employ those who share their beliefs and values, is embedded in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The Labor and Greens proposal to amend the state law is a way of avoiding the intention of this important International Covenant," John Miller, spokesman for the Australian Christian Values Institute said in an issued media release.

"At the heart of the issue is the freedom of religious faiths to employ staff who affirm their beliefs. They have an internationally established right to do this. It is more than the right that the Labor and Greens parties claim for themselves when they select staff who share their ethos and values. The Labor and Greens parties would object if they were forced to employ Liberal party members in their offices".

"If the Labor, Greens and the Sex party, who also back the proposal, want to change the law then they should be prepared to apply it to themselves, and the trade unions, in the interests of a level playing field."

SOURCE

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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

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2 December, 2014

Another multicultural killer in Britain



A dancer and her unborn baby were killed when a drug-fuelled driver mounted a kerb in his car, flew through the air and ploughed into them at more than 70mph.

Paige Jackson, 22, who was seven months pregnant with her first child, died instantly after being hit by the Volkswagen, which took off and spun 360 degrees after crashing into a sign in a 30mph zone.

Floyd Mangove – who had been drinking and smoking cannabis – has now been jailed for seven-and-a-half years, with victims’ relatives applauding the judge as he said: ‘I’m treating it as the death of more than one person.’

But they later said the punishment would never make up for the ‘life sentence of grief’ they had been left with.

Leicester Crown Court heard Miss Jackson had already named her son, Rueben, who died despite doctors carrying out an emergency Caesarean.

The 22-year-old, who had danced professionally and aspired to be a model, was killed shortly after setting off from home to walk to McDonald’s, where she was working extra shifts to earn cash in preparation for the birth.

Care worker Mangove, 22, who had climbed behind the wheel that February morning after a ‘rough night’, failed to negotiate a gentle right-hand bend before ploughing into the road sign.Martin Hurst, prosecuting, said: ‘His wheels locked and he mounted the pavement, demolishing a road sign with two upright posts which acted as a ramp, causing the car to take off and rotate 360 degrees, landing on its wheels.

‘In the course of the flight he struck Paige from behind, causing massive injuries to her head, abdomen and leg.’

He said the baby, who would otherwise have been born normally, died despite doctors’ best efforts. Mangove was arrested at the scene and found to have 142 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood. The legal limit is 80 micrograms.

He had been smoking cannabis. CCTV showed Mangove, from Leicester, was driving at between 71mph and 88mph in the build-up to the crash in the suburb of Aylestone.

He admitted causing death by dangerous driving. Sentencing him on Friday, Judge Nicholas Dean QC said: ‘You were responsible for those deaths by the way you drove your car.’

Mangove would have faced a sentence of around 12 years had he been convicted after a trial. But he received a discount because he did not flee the scene and had pleaded guilty.

After the hearing, the victim’s fiancé Kane Johnson, 23, said: ‘What he has done has devastated so many lives, not just the two that were lost. Paige was the most beautiful and kind woman – she was loved by everyone.’

Her mother Vanessa Freeman, 43, said in a victim impact statement read in court: ‘My grandson never even had a chance of life. The baby would have been loved so dearly by all the family.’

SOURCE






Band Aid Baloney

OK, another crisis, another token gesture by the West’s super rich elites. But hey, at least it makes ‘em feel good. While it might assuage their guilt feeling about living like kings while so much of the world is in abject poverty, I for one am not all that impressed.

Band Aid 2I refer of course to the latest shindig, Band Aid 30, put together by Bob Geldof and Co. Another gathering of uber-rich pop stars who want the world to think they are real humanitarians. I have often written about these sorts of efforts, and have pointed out the double standards, the ego-tripping, and so on.

And I am not alone in my concerns. Quite a few folks have blasted this latest effort, and for various reasons. And many of these critics come from the continent Geldof is claiming to help. So I will let them speak here. One article begins this way:

"A growing number of Africans are uncomfortable with what some call “the white saviour complex”. Bob Geldof may well be the only writer of one of the best-known songs of all time to admit that his multi-million selling anthem is truly awful and that he now finds himself irritated when he hears it on the radio. “I am responsible for two of the worst songs in history,” the shouty Irish singer and activist said in 2010. “One is ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas?’ and the other one is ‘We Are The World’.”

But that hasn’t stopped him re-recording the former, originally released in 1984 to raise funds to fight to the Ethiopia famine, and now incongruously synonymous with Christmas in Britain. The problem is that a lot of people agree with his assessment, and many of them are from countries on the very continent he is trying to help.

Various voices are heard in this article. Abdullahi Halakhe, a policy analyst in Kenya says:

"Do you know it’s Christmas? According to some estimates, the Christian population in Nigeria alone is almost three times the number of Christians in England and Wales. How couldn’t they know it’s Christmas? Bishop Arinze from Nigeria was at one point even in the running to be the next Pope.

Just sample the grotesque tone of the lyrics, dripping with the “White Man’s Burden.” It was awful 30 years ago, and it’s awful today. If they wanted a spike in record sales because we are nearing Christmas, this was not a great move.

What do you think of Western charity songs like this as a response to African emergencies? I think the fundamental problem with the “saving” Africa posture is that it is predicated on the notion that Africa/Africans are agency-less, which for me is problematic because it is the continuation of never-ending paternalistic tendencies towards Africa."

Robtel Neajai Pailey, a PhD researcher from Liberia is more blunt:

"In May, Liberian musicians Samuel ‘Shadow’ Morgan and Edwin ‘D-12? Tweh wrote and produced ‘Ebola in Town’. The lyrics were informative and the percussive beats so hot that it became an immediate hit. And just last month, the song ‘Africa Stop Ebola’ was produced by Malian, Ivorian, Congolese, and Guinean musicians.

We got this, Geldof, so back off. If you really want to help, buy a gazillion CDs of the two songs and send them to your friends as stocking stuffers with a note that says: “African solutions to African problems”. Instead of trying to remain relevant, Geldof and co. would do well to acknowledge the ingenuity of local artists and stop trying to steal the limelight!"

Ethiopian financial analyst Dawit Gebreselassie says:

"I think such celebrity-led initiatives have come to do more harm than the “good” they were intended for. And, even worse, is that it’s hard to imagine that the people behind it do not see the harm they are doing. Ethiopia has for the last few years been trying extremely hard to change its image as a poster child for poverty. It has been trying to depict a new bright image to the world so as to attract tourists and foreign direct investment. But this uphill battle is always hindered when such reminders of the past appear again on the screens of the people that are trying to be persuaded."

Africa’s only hope of success against poverty is through sustained, structured and equitable economic growth brought about through things such as investment and tourism. It’s hard to imagine how a few dollars raised every so often can possibly outweigh the damage it does by blemishing the continent’s image.

Nigerian human rights activist Chitra Nagarajan nails it:

"If the purpose of Bob Geldof and others is really to help the Ebola response rather than burnish their own profiles as modern day saints, they would donate money behind the scenes. The money that will be raised through this Ebola single could easily be raised by these rich musicians having a whip round among themselves and their friends."

Columnist Bryony Gordon is also scathing (and rightly so):

"Geldof is here to save West Africa from Ebola…. In the shallow, self-promoting world of celebrity, the simple and silent act of handing over money to charity is not the done thing – that’s what we impoverished plebs do. Instead, the rich and famous donate their precious time, and for this they expect to be celebrated and congratulated, as if before they flashed their expensively whitened teeth in the video for a song, we had no idea that Ebola was a problem, or that thousands of Africans were spending their last days on this earth in unimaginable horror, bleeding from every orifice, unable even to be comforted by their family and loved ones.

“Give us your f***ing money,” was Geldof’s message way back when, and it is his message now – you all dig deep and give up your hard earned cash because these famous people who make millions singing songs have deigned to give up a few hours of their time on a weekend. “We really can stop this… foul little plague,” said Geldof when he appeared on BBC Breakfast yesterday morning, with no mention of the Disasters Emergency Committee, which has raised £20 million for the region, or Medecins sans Fronteries, who have been out there since March."

She concludes:

"Nobody wants a world full of Ebola, but nor do I want a world full of Malaria and HIV and Tuberculosis and numerous other diseases – not to mention conditions such as hunger and poverty – that are destroying the lives of many millions of Africans every day. Certainly, I don’t want to be told how to behave philanthropically by a man worth an estimated £32 million, a man who is said to use tax avoidance schemes (it is telling that when a journalist asked him two years ago how much tax he paid, Geldof exploded at her, saying: ‘My time? Is that not a tax?’ Well, no, Bob, it isn’t).

I don’t want to be implored to give charitably by a band that travels in separate private jets because they don’t get on (One Direction), or by a man who avoids Irish taxes while simultaneously telling the Irish government to help developing countries (Bono). “It really doesn’t matter if you don’t like this song,” said Geldof as he launched it, “what you have to do is buy this thing.”

But do we? Really? If we don’t, does this make us unfeeling and uncaring, or does it mean that we have already donated money to the cause, or a different cause, even?

This, I think, is my main objection to Band Aid 30: it is all predicated on a belief that the British public are mean-spirited and uncharitable, when in actual fact nothing could be further from the truth. It’s time the likes of Geldof stopped asking us to give money."

Pity Sir Bob is being rather clueless here. But his ignorance seems proportionate to his arrogance.

SOURCE






85-year-old French doctor fined over $6,000 for urging woman not to have abortion

85-year-old French pro-lifer Xavier Dor was fined 5,000 euro ($6,350) Monday by the Appeals Court of Paris for having exerted “moral and psychological pressure” to dissuade a woman from having an abortion.

In 2012, the frail, almost blind, medical doctor, pediatrician, and researcher had given tiny knitted baby shoes to a woman who was approaching a Planned Parenthood center in central Paris.



The court also imposed a suspended fine of 5,000 euro, payable in case of a repeated offense, and awarded 750 euro damages to each of the three pro-abortion associations that had introduced the judiciary proceedings against Dor.

The Appeals Court was less severe than the criminal chamber of the Paris tribunal, whose judges went beyond the public prosecution’s demands, ordering a 10,000 euro fine in September last year as well as 2,000 euro damages for the young woman Dor met on the stairs leading to the Planned Parenthood center.

Dor is a veteran pro-lifer who, at the head of the association SOS Tout-petits, has led many protests and prayerful demonstrations near abortion facilities.

He told LifeSiteNews he was “surprised” by the reduced sentence, given the present context in which abortion has become a fully-fledged right in France, and is 100 percent refunded by the state-run Social Security.

Nevertheless, Dor has decided to take the affair to the Court of cassation, which is in charge of verifying the correct interpretation of the law. This case is actually one of the very first judgments regarding “moral and psychological pressure” with the intent of “hindering abortion.” This offense is of relatively recent invention: it qualifies strictly non-violent actions that can take place in any location, not necessarily close to a hospital or clinic where abortions are performed.

In this case, Dor twice entered the Planned Parenthood center. At this center, information can be obtained about contraception and abortion – including advice for women who are beyond legal term of abortion – but, contrary to the US, no abortions are performed there.

On the first occasion, on June 25, 2012, he entered the offices with another person and was able to speak with the person in charge, explaining why he was against abortion. Next day he returned alone: this time, a staff meeting was under way and he was brusquely expelled from the premises. It was while he was going down the common staircase of the building where Planned Parenthood has its offices on the first floor that he met a woman going up. He stopped her and offered her a Miraculous Medal of the Virgin Mary and knitted baby shoes, which she accepted.

The woman told the story at the Planned Parenthood offices and together with that association, as well as several professional pro-abortion and contraception unions, sued Dor because of the “extreme violence” of his words. As a Catholic and mother of three, she said, she had been “deeply shaken.”

During the appeals hearing, the public prosecutor supported her claim for damages and demanded that the first judges’ harsh sentence be confirmed: “He should realize the moral harm he’s been doing. It’s about time for him to stop. As a pensioner, he should find other occupations and let these women settle their own difficult questions of conscience, with all the heavy suffering they entail and that should not be increased,” he said.

As for the Planned Parenthood association and CADAC (National Coordination of Associations for Abortion Rights), they both asked for heavy damages, because, they said, sending Dor to prison would not help nor induce him to stop his fight against abortion. The offense of hindering an abortion carries maximum penalties of 2 years imprisonment and a 30,000-euro fine, as well as possible civil damages for the plaintiffs.

Both associations underscored that a fine would hurt Dor more than a prison sentence – he has already spent several months in prison for having prayed near abortion mills – and added that in these times of budget cuts their public funding is going down: why shouldn’t Dor help them get back some of the money they are no longer receiving from the State?

Both the local and national Planned Parenthood association as well as the CADAC were awarded 750 euro each. On the other hand, the woman in the case gained no damages at all, where the first judges had awarded her 2,000 euro for “moral harm” in September last year. Strangely enough, it was never made clear whether or not she was contemplating abortion on that day in June 2012, neither did she disclose whether she actually underwent an abortion then or at any other time. During the appeals hearing last month, she broke down during her testimony when her lawyer asked her to describe her feelings when Dor offered her the baby shoes.

It is therefore also unclear whether Dor can be understood, under the logic of the law, to have obstructed an abortion in a case where it is not even certain that there was a pregnancy.

This did not stop the judges from following the plaintiffs’ arguments. Claude Katz, representing Planned Parenthood, put it in portentous terms: “The right to abortion was obtained thanks to a long struggle. It is one of the most important advances of humanity. Your fight has already been lost. The Court’s decision cannot allow for the presence of a higher interest over and above the law.”

Another lawyer for the plaintiffs called Dor an “unworthy old gentleman” whose sole objective was to “hurt” and “cause suffering.”

Dor told LifeSiteNews: “The fine won’t stop me from defending life, there is more than one way to do so and we shall continue to demonstrate for the rights of the unborn.”

He added that while he was happy to note that the initial fine had been reduced by half, he considers “even a cent would be too much to pay for the right to defend innocent lives.” If necessary, he is prepared to take the affair before the European Court of Human Rights.

SOURCE






The three faces of censorship

Who do you want to ban or censor? The radical jihadist? The American ‘pick-up artist’? The offensive lyrics of a pop hit? The objectionable speaker who violates your sensibilities? The pro-life orator? The pro-choice orator? An art exhibition about slavery at the Barbican that makes people feel uncomfortable?

This week, it’s the turn of the terrorist agitator. The British government clearly views censorship as a vital weapon in its war against radical jihadists. Its proposed new laws, due to be unveiled by home secretary Theresa May today, threaten schools and universities with legal action if they fail to contain the threat of radicalisation or to ban extremists from speaking to students on campus.

Banning objectionable individuals from speaking on campuses or from entering the UK seems to have become the main vocation of the UK Home Office. Its new motto would appear to be ‘Si Movet Censor Eam — ‘If it moves, censor it!’. The other week it was Julien Blanc, the so-called pick-up artist accused of promoting sexual assault, who was banned from entering Britain. Today, the energy of the Home Office censor will be directed at eradicating jihadist ideas from university campuses.

Paradoxically, the government is a Johnny-Come-Lately to the ‘let’s ban something on campus’ crew. In the twenty-first century, university students are far more likely to demonstrate on behalf of censorship than they are to struggle for freedom of speech. In recent years, student-union meetings have only seemed to come alive when debating a motion that a certain society or meeting should be banned for failing to conform to official policy. Campus censorship has become a kind of competitive enterprise, where these unofficial advocates for censorship vie with officialdom to see who can demonstrate the most contempt for freedom and free speech.

The transformation of the academy from an institution that upheld the free circulation of ideas as one of its key virtues into an institution that sees censorship as an enlightened instrument for protecting individuals from offensive or dangerous ideas is one of the most remarkable developments in twenty-first-century Western society. It is a development informed by the zeitgeist of illiberalism that prevails in all sectors of society today. Tolerance is now increasingly regarded as a pragmatic principle that only applies to those who share the same outlook as you.

The ascendancy of the censor and the celebration of intolerance represent a reversion to the pre-modern view that it is morally justified to shut down and eliminate views perceived to be threatening. It is worth noting that until the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, it was intolerance rather than tolerance that was considered to be morally correct. As late as 1691, the French theologian Jacques-Benigne Bossuet boasted that Catholicism was the least tolerant of the religions. He stated: ‘I have the right to persecute you because I am right and you are wrong.’ From this perspective, tolerating objectionable sentiments was seen as a form of moral cowardice. The embrace of intolerance represented a refusal to engage in a battle against evil. Tragically, this backward and illiberal sentiment now animates the behaviour of Home Office civil servants, many student-union operatives, and a variety of advocacy organisations devoted to the cause of protecting their worldview and their supporters from offensive words.

Censorship has a long history. Back in Roman times, two magistrates, or ‘censors’, were charged not only with counting the population but also with supervising public morals. Official censorship was historically about containing heresy. The Catholic Church’s publication in 1564 of the Index Librorum Prohibitorum – an index of prohibited books – was a key example of institutionalised or official censorship. The Index sought to prevent the influence of ‘evil’ by stopping the circulation of heretical and other dangerous ideas that might corrupt public morality. In subsequent centuries, official censorship expanded its focus, moving from the sphere of morality towards silencing supposedly threatening political ideals. The authoritarian regimes of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union represented extreme forms of such institutionalised censorship of political thought. In such societies, people had to watch their every word. The repression of objectionable views was held up as a fundamental task for these self-consciously intolerant regimes.

In the twenty-first century, official censorship is far more limited than it was in the past. It is often hesitant and it communicates a sense of bad faith – its practitioners claim that while they still formally uphold tolerance and freedom of speech, in this particular instance censorship of a dangerous or hateful idea is necessary. The UK government’s proposed ban on extremist speakers on campus expresses very well the double standards of the contemporary official censor. Unlike that of the sixteenth-century Catholic Church, today’s official censorship lacks conviction and passion. Initiatives like May’s proposed anti-terrorism bill or the new laws against hate speech are ultimately a form of impression management. Instead of challenging threatening ideas, officials wish the problem away by rendering certain ideas illegal.

Today, official censorship is far less significant than its freelance counterpart: unofficial censorship. As anyone who is familiar with current trends in political and cultural life will know, the promotion of censorship is no longer the preserve of state or religious authorities. Advocacy groups, educators, campaigners, media organisations and, most notably, university-based individuals are now all actively engaged in crusades to ban individuals and censor views. Indeed, recent expansions of official censorship have in part been a response to the pressure exerted by unofficial agitators for intolerance. These days, an online petition demanding the banning of this or that is sufficient to get a sympathetic reaction from an institution or a government agency.

Paradoxically, advocates of unofficial censorship do not see their actions for what they are – acts of intolerance – but rather claim merely to be affirming and protecting the individuals who might feel offended by the views they are censoring. This can be seen most clearly in universities, where many students and academics devote more energy to criticising the principle of freedom of speech than they do to upholding it. Consequently, many of the official laws that violate the freedoms of speech and expression – for example, so-called hate-speech laws – actually have their origins in the deliberations of unofficial campus censors. That so much of the government’s proposed new anti-terrorism law is directed at universities is probably informed by the calculation that the grounds for official censorship have been well prepared by unofficial campus censors.

But official censorship and its enabler, unofficial censorship, are not the only forms of censorship today. The main damage caused by unofficial censors is through the influence they exercise on culture and everyday life: they have helped to consolidate a climate of conformism that has led to the growth of a third type of censorship. And it is arguably the most insidious form of censorship: self-censorship. Historically, self-censorship has been associated with the media and the intelligentsia, who for both good and bad reasons drew the conclusion in certain situations that silence was the better part of valour. Such behaviour in a totalitarian society, for example, is entirely understandable and often essential for personal survival.

However, today self-censorship is an expression of a lack of integrity and courage. Just count the number of times that people who have been publicly criticised for making an offensive comment have rolled over and declared that they were utterly wrong or insensitive. ‘I apologise’, they say. Such public acts of self-censorship do great damage, for they discourage other people from voicing their sentiments in public. Official and unofficial censors are probably delighted by the flourishing of self-censorship, but what they overlook is that through their repressive behaviour, and their creation of a climate of conformism and self-silencing, they deprive society of the ability openly to confront and deal with the challenges it faces.

The three faces of censorship – official, unofficial, and self- – reinforce each other’s influence, to the point where the very idea of an open society is called into question. That is why, without a hint of irony, public figures can demand that intolerance should not be tolerated. Fighting intolerance with intolerance has the perverse effect of depriving tolerance of moral authority and rebranding the intolerance of the censor as a good thing, as virtuous. The twenty-first-century descendants of the heresy-hunting authors of the Index Librorum Prohibitorum are no less energetic than their moral predecessors. They are right now busy drafting laws for parliament or motions for student unions or online petitions to ban something. Those who love liberty and uphold freedom of speech face formidable opponents who are no less zealous than the authors of that Index.

SOURCE






Southampton’s Burger King revolt

Southampton General Hospital has recently announced that it will not be renewing its concession for Burger King at the hospital, which runs out in 2016. Apparently, if you’re a patient, visitor or member of staff, you will no longer be allowed to ‘have it your way’. Burger King does not, according to the hospital’s management, fit into a modern ‘healthcare environment’. The medical profession cracking down on food it deems unsuitable is not news – but the fact that there is a campaign to save the Burger King outlet certainly is.

According to the Southern Daily Echo, users of the hospital, past and present, are ready for a lightly toasted bun-fight over the decision. The petition, organised by Brett Phillips, the husband of a former patient, complains about the hospital’s own food, which Phillips says is poor quality and often cold by the time it turns up – if it turns up at all, that is. Being able to buy a Burger King meal, which is at least cooked on site, has been a lifeline. He concludes: ‘Burger King may not provide the healthiest of foods, but its quality is much higher than that of the hospital food. Southampton General will be making a big mistake if it doesn’t extend the lease beyond 2016.’

It would, of course, be good if the food provided by the hospital was of consistently good quality and was delivered to the wards when it was needed. But it would be better still if hospital managers left patients with a choice. Sometimes, the familiar and tasty is what people need when they’re ill. A burger and fries, if not exactly a lifesaver, can be a great comfort. A low-calorie salad just won’t cut the mustard.

There’s another problem, too: the idea that fast food is inherently unhealthy. This shows that what is driving Southampton General’s decision is not nutrition science but snobbery. A burger and chips is, in fact, packed with protein and vitamins, along with a nice big portion of calories – just what the doctor ordered for patients who need building up. To say a Burger King meal is bad for you is the biggest Whopper of them all.

SOURCE

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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

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1 December, 2014

Multicultural pedophiles in Britain



Seven Somali men who were part of a 13-strong sex gang involved in the abuse, rape and prostitution of British girls have been jailed for more than 40 years.

Victims aged between 13 and 17 were preyed upon, sexually abused and trafficked across Bristol where they were mercilessly passed around the men's friends for money.

Many of the girls were groomed to view the abuse as a normal part of being the 'girlfriend' of a Somali man, as it was said to be 'culture and tradition' to be raped by their 'boyfriend's' friends.

Of the four girls, three were white and one mixed race, with a fifth girl witnessing many of the sickening assaults.

The girls were in local authority care and fell into the evil clutches of the men who used the fear of rape to control them.

The victims, described as 'vulnerable' due to their age and circumstances, were paid as little as £30 or given drugs, alcohol and gifts to perform sex acts on older men.

On one occasion, a 13-year-old girl was trafficked across Bristol to a Premier Inn by one of the defendants, Said Zakaria, 22, where she was raped four times by three different men.

Another defendant, aspiring boxer Mohamed Jumale, 24, forced a victim to be raped by his brother, Omar Jumale, 20, to save him from hell as he 'wanted to turn gay'.

And police investigating the case rescued one 14-year-old victim - wearing only her underwear - from a cupboard in a flat, where she was found weeping 'they made me do stuff'.

The case, now the subject of serious case reviews, follows similar exploitation of young girls across English towns and cities such as Rotherham, Rochdale, Oxford and Telford.

Two trials took place at Bristol Crown Court following an investigation, codenamed Operation Brooke, with 14 men convicted of child exploitation or drugs offences involving 10 victims.

Eight were jailed for a total of more than 70 years in June, while the remaining seven defendants - including one who featured in both trials - were sentenced today.

Judge Julian Lambert imposed sentences of between two and 11 years, with a combined total of 40 years and six months, describing some defendants as 'merciless'.

He said: 'You have all brought deep shame on your families, along with all the damage you have done. You were all brought up to know what proper standards of behaviour are.

'As well as deep, deep concerns for the victims of your crimes, I also have some concern for your families, who are not responsible for your actions. You are.'

The Operation Brooke defendants were convicted of charges including rape, sexual services of a child, facilitating child prostitution, trafficking, paying for the sexual services of a child and drug offences.

Mohamed Jumale was sentenced to 10 years after he was convicted of one count of rape against the second victim, known as Complainant 2. He was also found guilty of six counts of sexual activity with a child, against the first victim, known as Complainant 1, and one count of sexual activity with Complainant 2.

Jumale was also convicted of aiding and abetting his brother, Omar Jumale, in sexual activity with Complainant 1 - telling her to have sex with his brother to prevent him from turning gay.

Sentencing, the judge said: 'Love flowed only one way and was reciprocated only with lust on your part.

''You persuaded your girlfriend to have sex with three different men, including your brother.  'What you did was akin to causing a form of prostitution. To say you took advantage would be a significant understatement. You preyed on her affection for you in a highly cynical way.'

The judge, who imposed a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO), described the rape on Complainant 2 as a product of Jumale's 'appalling lust'.

Jumale's brother Omar was sentenced to two years imprisonment, which he will serve in a Young Offenders Institution, for having sex with the 13-year-old girl.

Mohamed Dahir, 22, was jailed for two years for causing or inciting Complainant 1 into child prostitution.

Said Zakaria, 22, was also made the subject of a SOPO, and jailed for 11 years for two counts of rape and two counts of sexual activity with a child against Complainant 1.

He was also convicted of trafficking the girl, then aged 13, across Bristol to take part in a 'sex party' in a hotel room at a Premier Inn.

The judge said: 'While at the hotel you raped a 13-year-old girl twice, once in the bedroom and once in the bathroom.  'When you didn't get the sex you hoped for you took it by force. That force was significant.

'Your victim was injured as a consequence of your forceful lust. The repeated humiliation of a small 13-year-old girl was completed in a rough, callous and very nasty manner.  'You behaved without humanity and simply took what you wanted, leaving your victim totally humiliated and bleeding.'

The judge ordered Zakaria to serve the 11-year sentence alongside the five-year sentence for drugs offences he was handed in the first trial.

Jusuf Abdirizak, 20, was jailed for seven-and-a-half years for the rape of the 13-year-old girl, Complainant 1, at the Premier Inn.

Abdirizak was captured on CCTV booking the hotel room, using his driving licence as identification.

The judge said: 'I assess you as being responsible for an opportunistic rape which you perpetrated on a little girl of 13 who had been recruited for a sex party at a hotel.

Abdirashid Abdulahi, 21, was jailed for four years for the rape of a 16-year-old girl, known as Complainant 4.

Sakariah Sheikh, 21, was jailed for four years for raping a girl, aged 16 or 17 at the time, known as Complainant 5, and sexual activity with a 13-year-old girl, Complainant 1.

SOURCE






Why I Didn't Wear a White Ribbon

Malcolm Smith

 I see that another special day and another good cause has come and gone: the United Nations' White Ribbon Day, 25 November. People were encouraged to wear white ribbons to protest violence against women. T-shirts bearing slogans like "Stop Violence Against Women" were worn at demonstrations. Groups of men were encouraged to get up and swear never to offer violence to women, and to speak out if they ever heard of it from others. The statistics quoted were quite frightening: 52 women murdered per year - one a week - by a current or previous partner, amounting to three-quarters of those women who had died by homicide, with one in three women a victim of violence in their lifetimes. I myself know women close to me who have suffered horrifying violence from their husbands. This is obviously a very good cause. So why do I refuse to get involved?

     For a start, I don't like the coercive nature of such campaigns. It is drunks, not sober citizens, who take the pledge, but when a sporting club is called upon to swear not to offer violence to women, what sort of pressure does that put on the one who doesn't think it necessary? It also suggests that if you decline to wear a white ribbon, then you are condoning violence against women. As far as I am concerned, it should be taken for granted that I, like every other decent person, am against all antisocial behaviour without having to say so.

     Secondly, it is a waste of time. It is preaching to the choir. I don't hit women - or men, for that matter - and don't know anybody who does. (I know some victims, but not perpetrators.) Even if I did know any, what makes you think that these riff-raff would take any notice of a wowser [puritan] like me?

     This brings me to the third reason. There is a sinister unspoken undercurrent throughout this campaign. It carries the strong suggestion that this is widespread cultural phenomenon which needs to be changed when, in fact, it involves actions by a minority of deviates who know full well that they are violating community norms.

     Lets take a look at the homicide statistics. The most recent, detailed ones I was able to find were in the report by the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) for the reporting years 2008-9 and 2009 -10. (There are later reports, but I couldn't find any so detailed). In that two year period there were 89 women killed by an intimate partner. That's 44½ per year; the figure of 52 is presumably later. In contrast, 33 men met their deaths at the hands of an intimate partner. However, if we look at the bigger picture, the total number of female homicides was 175 (that makes the proportion killed by an intimate partner 51%, not three-quarters), while male victims of homicide numbered 366 - 2.1 times as many!

     So why aren't we coming out into the streets demanding an end to violence against men? What's so special about women? Indeed, why are we concentrating on just one major aspect of violence against women: that committed by a partner? For that matter, instead of asking why 51% of murdered women are killed by partners, we might ask why there are not a whole lot more killed by other people.

     For the last question, the answer would appear to be the proportion of highly emotional interactions. 88% of the offenders were male. Now human beings are primates, and just like chimpanzees and baboons in this regard: not only is the male of the species more aggressive, he is more aggressive to his own kind than to the opposite sex. Men get aggressive in lots of situations: workplace disputes, fights over women, drunken brawls, gangland war, to name just some. Where would a woman fit into this scheme? To put it bluntly, for the average violent male, the only woman important enough to be worth killing is the one he is sleeping with.

     On the other hand, the strongest emotional interaction for a woman is likely to be with her husband or lover. 71 of the offenders were women. Since 33 men were killed by their intimate partner, that would amount to 46% of those killed by women.

     But there are a few elephants in the room. The first is the vast over-representation of Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders in the statistics. They represented 60 of the victims, or 11% of the total, including 25 intimate partners (the figures did not distinguish for sex in this case). If you remove them from the equation, the homicide rate for the rest of us is much lower. All right, these are victims, but for offenders it is even worse: 82 individuals, or 13% of the whole, were indigenous, and so were nearly 60% of those they killed. In fact, for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men, the rate of offending was more than five times the rate of the general population. Of course, I don't wish to minimise or disregard the terrible effects of violence on these dysfunctional indigenous communities. I merely wish to point out that it is not going to be changed by a lot of white men in white cities wearing white ribbons for a day.

     The second elephant is the ambiguity of the term, "intimate partner". Were these people actually married to their killers? I raise this issue because of the well established fact that domestic violence is more common in defacto relationships, and violence against children much more common. Yes, there are some particularly nasty husbands - I could give examples. Nevertheless, a woman is more likely to be bashed or raped if she is single, divorced, or living in sin than if she is married. Again, I don't wish to discount the violence in these relationships, but merely to point out that the solution is not to go around preaching about "violence against women", but to promote marriage - all the more so because of the well established greater propensity of divorce and unmarried parenting to produce violence and dysfunction in the next generation.

     Third, the really big elephant: the quoted figures are all very low. One woman murdered every week sounds terrible until you remember it comes from a population of 23 million. The overall homicide rate is just 1.2 per 100,000, which is among the lowest in the world. It is just a quarter of that of the United States, and on par with other First World Western countries. Not only that, it is the lowest recorded by the AIC. In the twenty years between 1989-90 and 2009-10, the rate had fallen 16%. If offenders, rather than victims, are considered, the male homicide rate fell from a 1992-3 high of 3.8 per 100,000 to 2.5, while the female rate remained more of less steady at 0.4 per 100,000. We are winning the war on homicide. Why hasn't this been publicised?

     What about the statistic of one in three women being victims of violence? Figures like this tend to be quoted and requoted without anyone knowing their origin. When the origin is known, often all that is cited is the summary, without any reference to the methodology. So even if we know the source, how can we be sure of its accuracy?

     In this case, it comes from the report on the 2005 Personal Safety Survey conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), according to which 4.7% of women and 10.4% of men had suffered violence in the previous twelve months. You will notice, again, the much higher number of male victims, whom nobody worries about. However, on closer reading, you will also discoer that "violence" doesn't necessary mean violence. It also includes attempted and threatened violence. When only genuine "physical assault" is included, the figures are 3.1% and 6.5% respectively.

     Not only that, but the situation is improving. For women the level had dropped 60% from 1996 to 2005. More people was also saying they feel safer in more places more often. Again, we are winning the war on violence, but nobody seems to notice.

     The ABS also estimated that 39.9% of women and 50.1% of men had suffered violence at least once since the age of 15. Here, presumably, if the source of the much-quoted figure of one in three women - without, or course, mentioning the one in two men.

     But remember: violence is not necessarily violence. The figures for actual physical assault are 11% of women and 22% of men. However, to even it up, 17% of women but only 4.8% of men have experienced sexual assault. (The two categories cannot, of course, be added, because it is quite possible, and indeed probable, to be a victim of both types of assault.) The fact that the lifetime prevalence is not quite four times the twelve-month incidence suggests that a lot of victims are repeat customers, so to speak. This would appear to correspond to what we know intuitively. Many people will be assaulted only once, or never, but there are certain relationships which are habitually violent.

Also, there are some people who seem to court trouble by their lifestyle. When you hear about drunken brawls in the Valley or the Cross, you just know that it is not an isolated incident for many of the participants. Just the same, one of the statements by the ABS does not really harmonize with the rest of it: that since the age of 15, only 0.9% of men and 2.1% of women experienced current partner violence (in the broadest sense of the word).

     What you will not find in the report is any discussion of severity. Sexual assault is defined as an act of a sexual nature carried out against the person's will, but excludes mere unwanted sexual touching. Feel free to let you imagination wander over the range of behaviour this might include. However, the fact that almost one in twenty men claim to have been a victim would suggest that it is not limited to full penetrative rape. Physical assault is defined as the use of physical force with the intent to harm or frighten. It might be as severe as a beating to render the victim unconscious, or it might be a simple as a slap in the face.

     I am reminded of a site when a women told how her husband had spanked her after she threw a cup of hot coffee at him(!). Was this domestic violence? she asked. The answer, of course, is Yes. According to the definition, they were both guilty of physical assault, and they should get over it. This is not the way reasonable people handle their differences, but let's not pretend it is part of an invisible culture of brutality.

More HERE






Former Tory chairman Lord Tebbit slams Government for helping women 'leave their children at home and go out to work'

Former Conservative Party chairman Norman Tebbit has demanded to know why the Government helps women to go out to work instead of to stay at home and look after their children.

The Tory former Cabinet minister also questioned why people never called for more women to become plumbers or electricians.

He spoke out as Government whip Baroness Garden was answering questions on the gender-pay gap in the House of Lords.

She had answered one question on the number of British women holding posts as ambassadors.

But Lord Tebbit asked her: ‘Do you not think it is strange that when these gender gap questions come up there is always a call for more women ambassadors, or generals or air marshals or something?

‘There is never a call for more women to be plumbers or electricians or jobs like that.'

He added: ‘Why does the Government do so much to give incentives to women to leave their children at home and go out to work rather than stay at home and look after their children?’

Lib Dem peer Lady Garden told him: ‘The Government is in fact giving incentives to women to be plumbers and engineers. We have only 7 per cent of engineers who are women in this country.'

She added: ‘There are a whole host of programmes to encourage girls and young women to go into Stem (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects.

‘And plumbers too - we need more women plumbers. Those women who do go into being women plumbers find that they can be very successful because there are quite a lot of customers who rather like having a women coming to help them out with their plumbing.’

SOURCE






Scientist who discovered DNA forced to sell his Nobel prize after being shunned for inflammatory race comments

A scientist who was part of the team that discovered DNA has been forced to sell his Nobel Prize after he was shunned by the scientific community for comments that linked race and intelligence.

James Watson sparked an outcry in 2007 when he suggested in an interview with the Sunday Times that people of African descent were inherently less intelligent than white people.

The American scientist said he had become an 'unperson' since making the controversial remarks and is now selling his prize in a bid to 're-enter public life'.

The medal, the first to be auctioned by a living recipient, is expected to fetch as much as £2.5million when it goes under the hammer at Christie's in New York next week.

Dr Watson shared the 1962 Nobel Prize, awarded for uncovering the double helix structure of DNA, with British scientists Maurice Wilkins and Francis Crick. The discovery was made by Watson and Crick, who used experimental data that had been gathered by Wilkins and Rosalind Franklin.

Dr Watson, 86, said that he was fired from the boards of a number of companies after making the inflammatory race comments, adding that he has not given any public lectures since.  He told the Financial Times: 'No one really wants to admit I exist'.

He said he would use the money from the sale of the medal to supplement his income, which now comes solely from academic institutions.

Dr Watson added that he would use some of the proceeds to give back to institutions that have supported him, including the University of Chicago, where he was awarded his undergraduate degree, and Clare College, Cambridge.

He revealed that he would also like to buy an artwork, telling the newspaper that he would like to own a piece by David Hockney.

He admitted that the comments had been 'stupid' on his part, and insisted he is not racist 'in a conventional way'.

He said: 'I apologise ... (the journalist) somehow wrote that I worried about the people in Africa because of their low IQ - and you're not supposed to say that.'

Auctioneer Francis Wahlgren told the Financial Times he did not expect Dr Watson's previous remarks to affect the sale.

He said: 'There are a lot of personalities in history we'd find fault with - but their discoveries transcend human foibles.'

The auction includes papers belonging to Watson, including handwritten notes for his acceptance speech.

SOURCE

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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

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Examining political correctness around the world and its stifling of liberty and sense. Chronicling a slowly developing dictatorship


BIO for John Ray


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 chidren 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


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.


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."


The Supreme Court of the United States is now and always has been a judicial abomination. Its guiding principles have always been political rather than judicial. It is not as political as Stalin's courts but its respect for the constitution is little better. Some recent abuses: The "equal treatment" provision of the 14th amendment was specifically written to outlaw racial discrimination yet the court has allowed various forms of "affirmative action" for decades -- when all such policies should have been completely stuck down immediately. The 2nd. amendment says that the right to bear arms shall not be infringed yet gun control laws infringe it in every State in the union. The 1st amedment provides that speech shall be freely exercised yet the court has upheld various restrictions on the financing and display of political advertising. The court has found a right to abortion in the constitution when the word abortion is not even mentioned there. The court invents rights that do not exist and denies rights that do.


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.


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


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




Index page for this site


DETAILS OF REGULARLY UPDATED BLOGS BY JOHN RAY:

"Tongue Tied"
"Dissecting Leftism" (Backup here)
"Australian Politics"
"Education Watch International"
"Political Correctness Watch"
"Greenie Watch"


BLOGS OCCASIONALLY UPDATED:

"Marx & Engels in their own words"
"A scripture blog"
"Recipes"
"Some memoirs"
"Paralipomena"
To be continued ....
Queensland Police -- A barrel with lots of bad apples
Australian Police News
Of Interest


BLOGS NO LONGER BEING UPDATED

"Food & Health Skeptic"
"Eye on Britain"
"Immigration Watch International" blog.
"Leftists as Elitists"
Socialized Medicine
Western Heart
OF INTEREST (2)
QANTAS -- A dying octopus
BRIAN LEITER (Ladderman)
Obama Watch
Obama Watch (2)
Dissecting Leftism -- Large font site
Michael Darby
The Kogarah Madhouse (St George Bank)
AGL -- A bumbling monster
Telstra/Bigpond follies
Optus bungling
Vodafrauds (vodafone)
Bank of Queensland blues


There are also two blogspot blogs which record what I think are my main recent articles here and here. Similar content can be more conveniently accessed via my subject-indexed list of short articles here (I rarely write long articles these days)



Main academic menu
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Note: If the link to one of my articles is not working, the article concerned can generally be viewed by prefixing to the filename the following:
http://pandora.nla.gov.au/pan/42197/20121106-1520/jonjayray.comuv.com/