Wednesday, July 23, 2014



Some multicultural shopping in Britain


David Sadiku

A gang of armed robbers who repeatedly fired a stun gun at a pawn shop manager in a £43,000 raid have been jailed for a total of 94 years.

David Sadiku, 41, and Kelly Day, 36, posed as a couple selling a Rolex watch to con their way into a pawnbroker’s in Ilford, Essex.

Once inside Maxcroft Securities Ltd, Sadiku pulled out a gun and dragged manager Naom Margolin out of his office while Day let fellow gang members - Paulius Strasunskas, 27, Francis Carbon, 32, Amjit Bharj, 47, and Aamir Kayani, 31 - into the shop.

Mr Margolin was shocked up to ten times with the stun gun and pistol-whipped in the face but managed to press the panic button, while a woman employee was stunned in the face.

The gang escaped with £43,000 worth of cash and jewellery, but were today behind bars after they were foiled during another robbery at a convenience store.

Sadiku and Day pleaded guilty to taking part in the Maxcroft robbery and the others were convicted following a nine-week trial at Old Bailey.

Another man, Michael Carbon, 26, who was involved in the mini-supermarket raid confessed to armed robbery, and was found guilty of a gun charge.

During the raid on July 5, last year Carbon told at staff at Maxcroft ‘I will f****** kill you’ as he demanded they empty their desks, while Strasunskas demanded: ‘Where’s the f****** money’.

He then put a stun gun to the face of one of the female members of staff and fired it at point blank range, the court was told.

‘She heard a cracking noise and felt a lot of pain. What had happened is he had used the stun gun on her face,’ said prosecutor Kerry Broome during the nine week trial.  ‘Her face was swollen and painful.

‘There was no need at all for anyone to administer a Taser, led alone to the face.  ‘He also administered the same gun to Mr Margolin’s head and neck area.’

Two customers were also forced to hand over wedding jewellery they were attempting to retrieve from the pawnbroker’s.

On June 25, just a few days before the attack at the pawnbroker's, the gang had tried to raid a Muslim wedding celebration after it had been announced in the local paper.

One wedding guest was Tasered in the face by the gang, but still managed to stop them from entering the home.

Then on August 8, officers from the Flying Squad - who had been following the gang since the Maxcroft robbery - swooped on gang members during a raid on Milap mini-supermarket in Chadwell Heath, east London.

Sadiku, Strasunskas, Carbon, Kayani, Day, and Bharj, were linked to the Maxcroft raid, while Michael Carbon was identified as part of the gang in the third robbery.

Michael Carbon and Strasunkas threatened staff with a handgun, stealing cash and other valuables before were stopped by armed police as they tried to escape.

Francis Carbon and Kayani, who were acting as a getaway driver and a lookout, were arrested nearby.

Sadiku, of Walthamstow, east London, admitted to aggravated burglary, burglary, two counts of robbery, two counts of carrying a firearm with criminal intent, two counts of possession of a prohibited weapon and one count of possessing a firearm with intent to commit an offence.  He was jailed for a total of 13 years.

Day, of Ilford, admitted robbery and carrying a firearm with criminal intent and was jailed for six years.

Strasunksas, of Clayhall, Francis Carbon, Barking, and Kayani, 31, of Romford, were convicted of aggravated burglary, two counts of robbery, burglary, two counts of carrying a firearm with criminal intent, two counts of possession of a prohibited weapon, and one of possessing a firearm. 

Strasunksas was jailed for 15 years, Francis Carbon was sentenced to 18 years in prison, and Kayani was jailed for 17 years.

Bharj, 47, from Upminster, Essex, was found guilty of two counts of robbery, one of burglary, carrying a firearm with criminal intent, possession of a prohibited weapon, and possession of a firearm.  He was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Michael Carbon, 26, of Plaistow, east London, was convicted of burglary, robbery, and possession of a firearm. He was jailed for ten years.

Sentencing, Judge Nigel Seed QC told the gang: ‘The stun gun was used in the face of a female employee as well as several times on the manager.

‘The female employees were terrified, and one heard a shout of “I’ll f****** kill you”.  ‘The employees were subjected to violence and forced at gunpoint to hand over the contents of their desk drawers.

‘An innocent couple of customers there redeeming family jewellery and gold had that taken as well.

‘This had been carefully planned.’

SOURCE






British government minister to cut 'penal' death tax on pensions

George Osborne, the Chancellor, will cut the 'penal' 55 per cent death tax on pension funds in his Autumn Statement

Hundreds of thousands of pensioners will be able to leave more of their money to their children under government plans to cut “penal” death taxes.

George Osborne will announce in his Autumn Statement that the 55 per cent rate on drawdown pension funds due when the holder dies will be reduced.

It is expected to fall in line with the 40 per cent inheritance tax rate in an attempt to encourage more people to take advantage of the Government’s pension reforms.

Under the reforms, Mr Osborne has scrapped rules that force most Britons to use their pension savings to buy an annuity.

The freedoms will make it easier and cheaper for people to withdraw money directly from their pension pots. Mr Osborne said on Monday that people will be given free, independent advice on how to invest their pensions. He added that it was time to end the “patronising” view that the “state knows best how people should spend their money”.

The Chancellor said that the reforms would “give people who have saved hard all their lives greater access to their pensions”.

More than 400,000 people have drawdown pensions, which remain invested in the stock market when people retire. They can then draw an annual income.

Drawdown pensions are seen as a more attractive option than annuities, which lock people into a fixed annual income for the rest of their lives. The Treasury believes that more people will take advantage of drawdown pensions under the government’s reforms.

At present if people die without exhausting their pension funds, their inheritance to their children or grandchildren is taxed at 55 per cent.

In a consultation document published on Monday, the Treasury acknowledged that the rate may be “too high” and “needs to be changed”.

The document states: “This is an important issue which could have implications for many people under the new system.

“The government will therefore continue to consider the options for altering the rate and will confirm its intention at the Autumn Statement 2014.”

Mr Osborne said: “We are talking about trusting people here. It’s not my money, it’s your money, this is the money of people who have worked hard and saved hard.

“We have reached a major milestone today in these reforms, which are going to come in and give people who have saved hard all their lives greater access to their pensions.”

Ros Altmann, a pensions experts and the Government’s “older people’s tsar”, said: “The 55 per cent rate is penal and we are trying to make pensions more popular.

“If someone is unlucky to pass away before they use their pension fund that shouldn’t mean that you penalise their estate. If they had their money in an Isa they would just face inheritance tax.”

The Government is also preparing the way for a new generation of more flexible “super annuities”, which could allow pensioners to withdraw lump sums.

Ministers also disclosed that they will be increasing the earliest age at which people can start withdrawing their pensions from 55 to 57 by 2028.

It comes after the Office for Budget Responsibility warned that people will have to work longer to help pay off Britain’s debts. The OBR suggested that the state pension age is likely to rise to 70 within 50 years.

SOURCE





UK: Civil servants more productive after spending cuts

Workers in the public sector have become more productive since the Government began wielding the axe on the sector, according to the head of its independent fiscal watchdog.

Robert Chote, chairman of the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), said the financial crisis and subsequent spending cuts had made the civil service more efficient and forced people to “respond” to these changes by working harder.

“In terms of, has it made a difference to the way people perform their jobs, I’m sure it does,” he told The Telegraph.

According to official data, productivity in the public sector showed zero growth between 1997 and 2010, meaning the only way the Government has been able to increase productivity is by hiring more staff.

While Mr Chote stressed that it was not up to the OBR to make a judgment about whether civil servants were providing more “value for money” than they were before the crisis, he said he was “sure” workers had changed their behaviour.

Mr Chote also said the OBR had been “surprised” that public sector spending cuts had not “acted as the drag on economic growth” that it had anticipated.

He said post-crisis output in the public sector had held up relatively well despite the reduction in input costs such as labour and capital spending, suggesting that public bodies have been able to squeeze the same amount of growth out of fewer resources.

Mr Chote also warned that Britons faced a permanent reduction in living standards if productivity growth remained weak across the whole economy.

He said that was the “biggest risk” to the UK economy getting back towards stable growth.

“In the medium term, [the question is] are we going to get back to a position where productivity growth grows reasonably healthily, and wages pick up as well? Because in terms of having a sustainable outlook for household consumption, you need to see that return to real income growth.

“It’s fundamentally productivity growth that determines living standards.

SOURCE






About Those Dirty Little Sisters of the Poor

Boy, our political debate is getting crasser by the moment.

And so it is that the National Organization for Women has put the Little Sisters of the Poor, an international congregation of Roman Catholic nuns who have devoted their lives to caring for the elderly poor, on its "Dirty 100" list.

NOW is upset that the Little Sisters sued the federal government, arguing that new ObamaCare mandates are inhibiting their constitutional right to freely practice their faith - that their vow to advance the dignity of life for every person, no matter how weak or unwanted, means they can never provide insurance policies that fund contraception, abortive drugs and sterilization, which ObamaCare was forcing them to do.

So NOW is calling the Little Sisters dirty - though the group should have done its research before attempting to tarnish some of the most remarkable women who have ever graced this Earth.

Little Sisters of the Poor was founded in France by Jeanne Jugan in 1839, when Jugan's association offered care and dignity to her first house guest.

Her mission, after all, was to dedicate her life to providing hospitality, dignity and care to the aged poor who could no longer care for themselves.

Born to modest circumstances, she trusted that God would provide the housing and resources she would need to care for her residents and she was correct.

To provide for the needs of the aged poor, she began a tradition still practiced today by which the Little Sisters visit merchants and others seeking alms of every kind - food, clothing, donations.

By 1849, she founded six more homes for the elderly. By 1850, she had 500 associates and houses as far away as England. By 1879, the year she died, she had 2,400 associates providing care.

Today, Little Sisters of the Poor operates 200 homes in more than 30 countries providing care to more than 13,000 elderly residents - including a wonderfully cheerful operation on Pittsburgh's North side.

For Jugan's efforts, she was canonized a saint in 2009.

Her "dynamism is continued today across the world in the Congregation of the Little Sisters of the Poor, which she founded and which testifies, after her example, to the mercy of God and the compassionate love of the Heart of Jesus for the lowliest," said Pope Benedict XVI at her canonization ceremony.

What is most striking about Jugan's legacy is how her worldview was so different from that of NOW and so many others in our culture today.

Jugan's interpretation of the term "rights" was that every individual is a child of God and has a right to experience dignity and love in his or her final days. She never demanded her government establish mandates to care for the elderly poor or even provide funding. She simply did everything she could as a private individual to provide dignity and love.

In the United States, her organization has always been free to operate according to its principles. It has provided health insurance policies for its employees for years that did not fund contraception, abortive drugs or sterilization (though employees were, and still are, free to purchase such items on their own).

This was never a pressing problem until our ever-encroaching federal government demanded these things be included in insurance policies with the passage of ObamaCare.

So NOW, which considers government-mandated birth control a greater right than that of religious groups to run their organizations according to their religious principles, is calling some of the most humble and accomplished women on the planet dirty.

And that's why, as our government expands into our personal and religious lives, our political debate is getting crasser by the moment.

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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Tuesday, July 22, 2014



Multicultural accountancy in Britain



An accountant at a chain of academies championed by Michael Gove is at the centre of a fraud investigation after £4million of school funds ended up in his personal accounts.

Nigerian-born Samuel Kayode is said to have spent much of the cash on an extravagant lifestyle and buying a string of properties.

The 57-year-old part-time pastor was told by the High Court to pay £4.1million back to the Haberdashers’ Aske’s chain of academies more than a year ago.

He has failed to do so, and it is feared most of the cash has been transferred to Nigeria.

The case, kept secret for almost two years, is believed to be Britain’s biggest ever education fraud.

Although Kayode was arrested in October 2012, police have yet to charge him with any crime.

Critics of academies – state schools which have control of their own finances – say the massive loss of cash calls that entire system into question.

Questions were also asked about whether Mr Gove – who lost his job as Education Secretary last week – took close enough interest in the case.

The vast sum of money is missing from the Haberdashers’ Aske’s Federation Trust in South London.

It is named after 17th century silk merchant Robert Aske who left much of his wealth to create an educational charity fund run by the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers.

The Haberdashers’ Aske’s public schools for boys and girls in Hertfordshire were founded with his money.

Three Haberdashers’ Aske’s state secondaries in South-East London – Hatcham College, Knight’s Academy and Crayford Academy – are run by the trust as a separate charitable wing funded by Mr Aske’s endowment. They were often referred to by Mr Gove in speeches.

Kayode went to work at Hatcham in 1997 and rose to become accounts manager for the whole chain.

He was paid £57,000 a year, and told colleagues of his work as a pastor in the Christ Apostolic Church, South London, peppering his conversations with ‘praise the Lord’.

In October 2012 it emerged that a large sum of money was missing from the academies’ funds.

Kayode’s assets and those of his wife Grace, who died aged 53 last year, were then frozen.

It appeared that huge sums of school money had been paid into a bank account in Nigeria and a company called Samak, which is said to be run in Nigeria by Kayode’s second wife Yoni, although he denies any wedding has taken place.

The trust launched a High Court case to reclaim the missing cash but the accountant denied wrongdoing and claimed ‘all transactions had been authorised by the finance director’.

However, the judge found in the trust’s favour last July and ordered Kayode and the estate of his late wife to pay back more than £4million plus interest.

He remains at large and is not facing any charges, although he is due to speak to detectives again this week.

A Metropolitan Police spokesman would say only that a man from Lambeth was on police bail.

Adrian Percival, chief executive of Haberdashers’ Aske’s Federation Trust, said: ‘The civil case found in favour of the federation and we are trying to recover the money that has been taken from us. We are obviously shocked and saddened.’

But furious parents say Haberdashers’ Aske’s has tried to hush the scandal up.

Jill Rutter, who has several children at the Hatcham academy, said in an online blog: ‘The fraud strikes at the heart of the educational establishment and shows that the current system and the freedom afforded to academies is not working. Ultimately it is our children that suffer.’

Kayode’s boss at Haberdashers’ Aske’s, former chief finance officer Paul Durgan, is now working for a new academies chain.

He said: ‘Sam Kayode completely had me taken, like everybody else. Nobody from the police or school has spoken to me.’

SOURCE






Racial Politics May Determine Who Controls Senate in 2014

It is no accident that rhetoric about race has been ramping up at a time when racial politics can be the key determinant for control of the Senate this year.

At least three states – North Carolina, Louisiana, and Arkansas – are red states with vulnerable Democrat Senators up for re-election that have large black populations.

Can racism really be as rampant in America as all the current rhetoric implies?

A Google search for “racism” will produce a long list of articles from the most recent week’s news claiming racism on issue after issue of national concern.

We need to dig deeper and give more careful thought about whether racism is as pervasive as all the rhetoric seems to imply or whether other factors are driving the problems that continue to plague non-white communities. And if so, perhaps all the rhetoric about race we’re hearing reflects more Democratic political operations than realities of America.

In important ways, American attitudes on race have changed dramatically.

According to Gallup, in 1958 only 4 percent of Americans believed marriage between individuals of different races was acceptable. Today 87 percent say interracial marriage is okay.

A society, in which almost ninety percent of people believe it is just fine for individuals of different races to marry and have children together, can hardly be called a racist society.

And, of course, a black man today sits in the White House serving his second term as president.

Granted, in 2012 the Republican candidate, Romney won 61 percent of the white vote. But 39 percent of whites voted for the black, Democrat candidate.

It turns out, as the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza wrote last year, that in every presidential election since 1972, the average percentage white vote for the Democrat candidate was just about the same as what Obama got in in 2012 – around 39 percent.

So a real headline about election of our first black president was that race had hardly had any impact at all on voting patterns. The percentage of whites voting Republican was around the norm as was the percentage of whites voting for the Democrat. A black Democrat did not drive away white Democrats.

The Post’s Cillizza shows that the driving political reality of recent presidential elections has been the growing non-white percentage of the electorate and that most of these non-white Americans support Democrats.

In 1980 88 percent of the electorate was white compared to 72 percent in 2012.

In 1980, 23 percent of Democrat voters were non-white compared to 44 percent in 2012. In 1980 4 percent of Republican voters were non-white compared to 11 percent in 2012.

The growing percentage of our voters is not white and they largely vote for Democrats.

If the key difference between the two parties is about big government versus limited government, much of what America’s future will look like will ride on whether Republicans can make any headway with non-white voters with a limited government message.

I believe there is much potential for doing so if Republicans would get down to the work that needs to be done.

Since the Civil Rights Act in 1964, black economic progress on average compared to the white population has been dismal. The gap in black household income compared to white household income has grown, average black household wealth as a percentage of average white household wealth has shrunk, and the percentage of black poverty has remained almost constant at three times greater than white poverty.

These realities reflect destructive big government policies that grip these communities. But Democrats who want to continue to sell these policies will continue on the racism message and claim that this is what limited government ideas are about.

Republicans need to get truth to black populations in these key vulnerable states. They need to hear about limited government reforms that will help them. This can determine who controls the Senate next year

SOURCE





The Coming Christian Revolt

From behind a smoking sniper rifle high atop his ivory tower peers the secular-”progressive.” He surveys his many victims, strewn across the American landscape below and mockingly sneers, “War on Christianity? What war on Christianity?”

He then resumes shooting, all the while insisting that those uncooperative Christians who scatter for cover behind the word of God and the U.S. Constitution somehow suffer from a “persecution complex” (the baker, the photographer, the florist, the innkeeper, the Christian school administrator, etc.).

Though there are many, it is plain for all to see that abortion and “sexual liberation” remain the two principal theaters in the ongoing culture war battlefront.

To fully advance the causes of radical feminism, abortion-on-demand, unfettered sexual license, “gay marriage” and the like, the pagan left must do away with religious free exercise altogether. Under the guise of “anti-discrimination,” Christians today face discrimination at unprecedented levels.

Let’s see if we can make this abundantly clear. Christians, true Christians – regenerate, Bible-believing Christians who strive their level best to maintain fidelity to the word of God and honor His commands – will not, indeed cannot, participate in, approve of, facilitate or encourage certain behaviors deemed by the Holy Scriptures to be immoral or sinful.

This is both our constitutionally affirmed human right and our Christian duty.

It is not done from hate. It is not done from bigotry. It is done neither from a position of superiority nor a desire to “impose our beliefs” upon others.

It is done from both obedience to Christ and compassion for our fellow fallen who yet wallow in folly.

Central to Christianity, and clearly delineated throughout both the Old and New Testaments, is the unambiguous and timeless proposition that any sexual practice outside the bonds of true man-woman marriage constitutes sexual immorality and results in separation from God. This, of course, includes sexual acting out between members of the same sex, whether or not such acting out is tied to the novel notion of so-called “same-sex marriage.”

Likewise central to Christianity is the relatively easy-to-understand concept that a Christ follower must neither take the life of a pre-born child nor aid and abet, in any way, the taking of such life.

It is not so much that Christians wish, willy-nilly, to call abortion, homosexual behavior, fornication, adultery, bestiality, incest or any other disordered sexual proclivity “sinful.” It is, rather, that we must. For the true Christian, God’s objective truths will always trump man’s subjective desires.

Newton’s Third Law states: “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”

For every law, regulation, activist court ruling or presidential edict that demands Christians violate their sincerely held religious beliefs and adopt a postmodern, moral relativist way of life, there increases, in exact proportion, the likelihood of widespread civil disobedience – disobedience of the sort we haven’t seen since the civil rights struggles of the 1950s and ’60s.

Indeed, if, in the spirit of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., we, his fellow Christian travelers, must again face the water hoses, then face them we shall.

As the recent Hobby Lobby decision reaffirmed, the government cannot legislate away religious free exercise. Where your desire, intense though it may be, for me to employ you despite your antagonistic values system, pay for your abortion, or host, photograph or otherwise bake a rainbow cake for your faux “wedding,” comes into conflict with my absolute right to religious liberty, the result is a forgone conclusion.

I win, you lose.

We have seen and will continue to see an exponential increase in Christian business owners refusing to violate God’s commands by complying with unconstitutional, immoral and unjust government dictates.

For 2,000 years, whenever such conflicts have arisen, Christians have placed the laws of God above the laws of man.

What makes you think we’re about to change now?

As many in the early church refused to bow a knee to Caesar in worship, so, too, will many modern Christians refuse, under any circumstances, to obey any law that presumes to make sin obligatory.

If the ancient church, through the power of the Holy Spirit, was able to face the lions in hopeful anticipation of joining Jesus, then we, too, under the same Spirit, will face anything today’s pagan left can threaten.

In the ongoing culture war, it seems there are no rules of engagement. The secular left will accept nothing short of unconditional surrender. That is to say, the pagans demand that we Christians abandon the biblical worldview altogether, and adopt their own.

This will never happen.

Martin Luther King Jr. famously declared, “One has not only a legal, but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.”

In 2012, after the Obama administration unilaterally issued its now gutted HHS contraception/abortion mandate, Catholic priests from across the nation, to their great credit, read from the pulpit a letter that contained the following declaration: “We cannot – we will not – comply with this unjust law.”

As our secularist government increasingly imposes similar laws, so, too, increases the certitude of civil disobedience.

While there are those who will give way out of fear, weakness or a desire to conform to the world, there are many others who will not. Christians must peacefully come together, lock arms and redouble our resistance to evil.

Even when that evil is adorned with the presidential seal and signature.

SOURCE





A Question for Israel’s Critics

In light of the murderous actions and intentions of Hamas, what would you like Israel to do?

I wholeheartedly concur that the death of even one unarmed civilian is tragic, let alone the death of scores or of hundreds. And I affirm without hesitation that Arab blood is as precious as Jewish blood.

That being said, since Hamas is sworn to Israel’s destruction, since Hamas initiated the recent hostilities, since Hamas rejected cease fire offers, since Hamas is using civilians, including women and children, as human shields, and since Hamas is actively attempting to infiltrate Israel and murder, kidnap, and maim its people, what do you suggest that Israel does?

Would you prefer that Israel simply turned the other cheek and let its people be slaughtered?

Would you rather that Israel’s Iron Dome defense system was not as successful, so that an occasional missile landed in a heavily populated area and wiped out some Israelis?

Did you like things better in the days of the Second Intifada, when 1,100 Israelis were killed, the vast majority of them non-combatant civilians?

Is the whole problem that there are not enough dead Jews? (Click here for my November, 2012 article by that title; click here for a recent, similarly-titled article by Melanie Phillips.)

Reading a recent article in the New York Times, which provides a daily scorecard of Palestinian and Israeli casualties and bombings since the beginning of Operation Protective Edge, one gets the distinct impression that Israel is not playing fairly. Indeed, “After 11 days of fighting, 336 Palestinians and 5 Israelis had died.” How is that fair?

The photographs in the article generate sympathy almost exclusively for the Palestinians, with tragic images of a Palestinian man carrying the dead body of a little boy and of Palestinian women grieving, while the written text is hardly unbiased, with statements like, “Egypt’s proposal for a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas collapsed a few hours after the Israelis had accepted it. Palestinian militants launched rockets on Israel, some of which are shown above, and Israel resumed its airstrikes on Gaza.”

It would have been more accurate to say, “Israel accepted Egypt’s cease-fire proposal but Hamas rejected it, responding to the proposal with more attacks on Israel.” To say that the proposal simply “collapsed,” expressed passively without blaming the guilty party, is to mislead.

Even fellow-Muslims have been critical of Hamas’s actions, with an Egyptian TV host (who was solidly pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel) saying, “We are sick and tired of you.”

In the past, Israel’s critics denied or downplayed the Jewish nation’s attempts to protect Palestinian civilians, as if the IDF was making up reports that it dropped thousands of leaflets warning civilians to flee or called houses that were about to be bombed, urging those inside to get out.

Today, however, the IDF’s humanitarian actions are undeniable, as both Hamas and Fatah have urged civilians to ignore those warnings or, if they have evacuated, to return to their homes. Watch for yourself here as Hamas leaders say, “We call on our Palestinian people, particularly the residents of northwest Gaza, not to obey what is written in the pamphlets distributed by the Israeli occupation army. We call on them to remain in their homes and disregard the demands to leave, however serious the threat may be.”

So, Israel warns civilians to flee, not wanting to hurt them, while Hamas launches rockets from heavily populated neighborhoods, including schoolyards and hospital parking lots, urging civilians to return to these places of danger, yet Israel is somehow the guilty party, drawing violent, even blatantly anti-Semitic protests in cities like London and Paris.

One Palestinian woman commented on my AskDrBrown Facebook page that Hamas was not using its people as human shields. Instead, the people were willingly standing with their leaders, closing her post with, “Long live Palestine!” After all, the Israelis did not put Hamas in power, the people of Gaza did.

Sadly, if the citizens of Gaza wanted to live in peace with Israel and empowered a government that would act in their best interests, their standard of living would improve dramatically. As it is, in the midst of the warfare, Israel still sends humanitarian aid into Gaza on a daily basis and continues to provide medical care to wounded and sick Palestinians.

And, the truth be told, given Israel’s firepower, if Israel wanted to inflict casualties on civilians in Gaza, the death toll would be in the hundreds of thousands, as opposed to the hundreds. (Again, I do not for a moment minimize the current civilian casualties.)

Conversely, to put this in perspective, what would happen if the tables were turned and Hamas had Israel’s military capabilities? How many dead Israelis would there be?

Murderous sentiments like this, expressed in 2012 on Hamas-run Al-Aqsa TV after one of their bombs wounded 22 Israelis in Tel Aviv, provide a vivid and gory answer to the question.

As the TV report showed footage of the bloody scene, the announcer said: “These are scenes of the casualties. God willing, we will soon see black body bags. I pray to God the exalted we will see body bags in a short while. . . . Right now in these moments, the mosques in the Gaza Strip, their minarets are loudly sounding cries of ‘Allahu Akbar’ and cries of joy, and the residents of the Gaza Strip are bowing down to Allah for this offering [or, gift]. The morale of the Gaza residents is in the sky right now, and is rising just as the rockets of the resistance.”

As expressed more recently by a Muslim cleric in Lebanon (addressing Prime Minister Netanyahu), “We will give the skulls of your midgets as gifts for our children’s feet to play with.”

So, to rephrase my question, since 70% of the people of Israel have had to take refuge in bomb shelters and respond to sirens, and given the fact that Hamas is sworn to Israel’s destruction, what you would like Israel to do?

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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Monday, July 21, 2014


British Justice Secretary  vows to 'slay health and safety culture'

Employees who do “something dumb” and hurt themselves at work will no longer be awarded damages if their bosses have taken sensible steps to keep staff safe, under new laws designed to “slay the health and safety culture”.

Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary, warned that society has become “too inclined to blame someone else” when something goes wrong, leading to a compensation culture that needs to be broken.

His new Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Bill, to be debated by MPs for the first time on Monday, will make it harder for ambulance-chasing lawyers to win cases in the courts, the Cabinet minister told the Telegraph.

The Bill will protect people from being sued if something goes wrong when they try help in an emergency. It is also intended to give teachers confidence that they will not face legal action if they have taken reasonable safety steps when organising a school trip.

In a blunt message to the trade union officials who bring thousands of negligence cases against employers every year, Mr Grayling warns that their readiness to pursue “every opportunity” to take legal action is putting companies off hiring staff.

Speaking to The Telegraph, Mr Grayling said: “This is a Bill that’s out to try and slay the health and safety culture.

“It is about trying to restore common sense to the kind of situations which happen all too often and very seldom get to court - where somebody has an accident at work, it’s entirely their own fault, they have got a perfectly responsible employer who has the normal health and safety procedures in place but that person does something dumb, hurts themselves and sues the employer anyway.

“For responsible small businesses it is a real headache and most of the time they just pay up because it is less hassle to do so. This is meant to be a big message to them because if you do the right thing, we are making sure that the balance of the law is in your favour.”

Under the measures contained in the Bill, a court deciding a negligence case will have to consider whether the defendant was acting for the benefit of society, had demonstrated a generally responsible approach to safety, or was trying to help in an emergency situation.

Mr Grayling argued that small businesses are frequently put off hiring new staff for fear of taking on the added legal liabilities.

He criticised legal firms and agencies for trying to persuade more members of the public to sue over minor accidents, through advertising on daytime television and offering free iPads and other gifts to encourage clients to sign up with lawyers.

“There is an industry out there that’s trying to get you to claim,” he said.

“I think generally speaking we have become a society where people are more willing to have a go, where there’s marketing to encourage them, and I think perhaps too little inclination to say ‘it was me that messed that up’. We are a bit of a society that is a bit too inclined to blame someone else.”

The Bill, which was announced in the Queen’s Speech last month, has had a mixed reaction.

It was welcomed by voluntary groups who have warned that fear of litigation stops many people from offering their services but opposed by trade unions, who raised concerns about its potential impact on employees injured at work.

Mr Grayling said unions had “too much of an inclination to chase every opportunity” to win pay-outs for their members.

“My message to the trade unions would be we are fortunate in our society that we have some of the safest workplaces in the world - that’s clearly a good thing and we shouldn’t compromise on health and safety standards.

“We should certainly go after the people who are the health and safety rogues,” he added.

“But if we overdo the regulation and make people liable for things where common sense says they have got no responsibility then you just have fewer people in jobs and that can’t be right.”

The changes follow attempts by ministers to reduce high insurance premiums which have been blamed for making it too expensive to run a car or organise an event.

The new law changes could have a further impact on insurance premiums by reducing the amounts insurance companies expect to make in pay-outs, encouraging the industry to pass on savings to customers, as they have previously promised to do.

SOURCE





Obama Administration Suppresses Talk of Muslim Persecution of Christians

Along with an especially egregious list of atrocities committed against Christian minorities throughout the Islamic world, March also saw some callous indifference or worse from the U.S. government.

President Barack Hussein Obama was criticized by human rights activists for not addressing the plight of Christians and other minorities during his talks with leaders in Saudi Arabia, where Christianity is banned.

According to the Washington-based International Christian Concern (ICC) advocacy group, Obama did not "publicly broach the subject of religious freedom" during talks on March 28 with Saudi King Abdullah, despite a letter from some 70 members of Congress urging him to "address specific human rights reforms" both in public and in direct meetings with Abdullah and other officials.

"This visit was an excellent opportunity for the president to speak up on an issue that affects millions of Saudi citizens and millions more foreign workers living in Saudi Arabia," said Todd Daniels, ICC's Middle East regional manager, adding that it was "remarkable that the president could stay completely silent about religious freedom" despite pressure from Congress "to publicly address the issue, as well as other human rights concerns, with King Abdullah..."

U.S. officials reportedly responded by saying that "Obama had not had time to raise concerns about the kingdom's human rights record."

Separately, after the United States Institute for Peace (USIP) brought together the governors of Nigeria's mostly Muslim northern states for a conference in the U.S., the State Department blocked the visa of the region's only Christian governor, Jonah David Jang, an ordained minister, citing "administrative" problems.  The USIP confirmed that all 19 northern governors were invited, but the organization did not respond to requests for comments on why they would hold talks without the region's only Christian governor.

According to Emmanuel Ogebe, a Nigerian human rights lawyer based in Washington, the Christian governor's "visa problems" are due to anti-Christian bias in the U.S. government:  "The U.S. insists that Muslims are the primary victims of Boko Haram. It also claims that Christians discriminate against Muslims in Plateau, which is one of the few Christian majority states in the north. After [Jang, the Christian governor] told them [U.S. authorities] that they were ignoring the 12 Shariah states who institutionalized persecution ... he suddenly developed visa problems...  The question remains-why is the U.S. downplaying or denying the attacks against Christians?"

More HERE




The “Jewish” Question

A prophecy that has come true:  "O pray for the peace of Jerusalem: They shall prosper that love thee"  Psalm 122:6.

by EDWARD CLINE

These ongoing pogroms, anti-Semitic attacks, the noisy and often violent demonstrations, and the individual attacks on Jews in Europe and elsewhere, apparently occur in cycles. But they especially explode when Jews fight back and take steps to trounce their tormentors. As Israel is doing now against Hamas in Gaza. How dare they?

Now, as an atheist, I have no special regard for any religion. The one I hate - and I hate it because I fear it, and fear that it is making inroads in my Western culture, because it is a malignant, death-worshipping, nihilist evil - is Islam. All the others, including Judaism, don't worry me, because not a one of them is telling me to defer to it, walk on the other side of the street, or threatens me with death. All those others exist on the periphery of my consciousness and of my concerns. I try to imagine an Amish farmer in a suicide vest. It doesn't compute. The idea is laughable. Although I suspect that if Muslims try to collect jizya from the Amish, I think Amish pacifism will come to an end, and Islam will have a problem. I especially look forward to the Quakers' reaction to submission.

But, I am otherwise indifferent to religion. I was raised in a Catholic household without having become a Catholic. The contradictions, arbitrary restrictions, hypocrisies, scandals, and corruption prevalent in that creed alienated me permanently from any species of mysticism.

Jews? I don't even regard them, collectively, as a "race." In my mind, Judaism is a religion, first and foremost. Anyone can become or be a Jew: Caucasians, Latinos, Blacks, Asians. I wouldn't know a Jew on a street unless he wore his religion on his sleeve, as Hassidic Jews do.

But it is also true of Islam, that it isn't reserved to a specific race. Except the difference is that Judaism isn't seeking rabbinical hegemony over the globe. Jews are not telling me that I'd better convert and wear a kippah, or lose my head, or see my daughter raped, or my son's hands chopped off.

Jews just want to be left alone, and, incidentally, to benefit the rest of the world with their work and humanity.

But no one wants to leave them alone. Jews are the one-size-fits-all historical scapegoats for whatever miseries or catastrophes have beset mankind or brought about on himself. History abounds with instances of how Jews have benefited man, yet were banished or subjected to riotous murder. They have loaned money to bankrupt princes and spendthrift governments, yet were snubbed, insulted, or worse. They have excelled in medical and scientific research and technology, and in business and finance. They are generous to a perilous fault, such as the foolhardy supplying of their enemies in Gaza - and that includes all the hapless shnorers, Hamas's human shields - with medical supplies, food, and other necessities.

Jews can also be foolish, such as the American ones who oppose Israel, and the ones in Israel itself who subscribe to the fantasy that Hamas and Gazans and Muslims of whatever suasion can be pacified and made tolerant of Jewish and Israeli existence. I don't know where their heads are, and I'm so fastidious in some respects that I don't even want to explore their self-evident delusions.

They don't seem to realize that if Israel were ever destroyed, they, the helping-hand Jews, would be among the first to be exterminated. Islam does not tolerate "but-you-said" complaints. The same goes for the leftards in this country who have "allied" themselves with Islamic supremacists simply because Israel contradicts . They'll be among the first to be sent to the wall or over the cliff, come an American caliphate. Except for the ones who have mastered the art of groveling.

The world owes Jews and Israel an incalculable debt for everything they've done for it, yet our response is to stab them in the back, betray them, and tell them to parley for peace with killers who do not want peace, who are certifiable psychotics who want to kill for the sake of killing, and act and exist for no other reason.

The world owes Jews and Israel that incalculable debt, and, rather than create a pitifully partial list of their achievements here - achievements which improve and advance man's existence - I offer here links to various sites that itemize everything they've done. Readers may peruse the lists at their leisure:

Inventions:

http://www.israel21c.org/technology/israels-top-45-greatest-inventions-of-all-time-2/

Nobel Laureates (191, in all categories):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Jewish_Nobel_laureates

A collection of achievements:

http://israelseen.com/2011/07/14/collection-of-israels-achievements/

Israeli medical achievements:

http://www.arlenefromisrael.info/faces-medical/

The Israeli high-tech industry:

https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Economy/hitech.html#2

The Methodist Friends of Israel:

http://www.methodistfriendsofisrael.com/so-you-want-to-boycott-israel/

What have been Muslim contributions to man's condition, to increase his happiness and well-being, other than the inculcating a neurosis of terror, and developing weapons with which to kill Jews, attack Israel, and slaughter infidels? For 1,400 years, not much, except, perhaps, to filch algebra from the Indians and also what are called "Arabic" numbers. The tally of Muslim Nobel Laureates comes to an underwhelming eleven: Seven Peace Prizes, two in literature, one in physics, and one in chemistry.

What can explain this virtual absence of Muslim achievements? Aside from the mind-numbing nature of Islamic ideology, which I've discussed in past columns, one Muslim offers this credible and honest explanation for it:

    "...Today's common Muslim mind, including the intellectual Muslim mind, is quite insular, and is focused on protecting an "Islamic" (and quite closed) mental sphere from influences from the outside world. The result is a defensive culture that refuses to engage with the ideas of "the unbelievers," and therefore only repeats what it has learned from its own forebears. If we Muslims want more Nobel Prizes - and all the knowledge, sophistication and success that they imply - we must begin with challenging this closed-mindedness, and strive to have more open minds."

I don't think this fellow is a true, practicing Muslim. If he were, he wouldn't have been able to write those words.

Hamas's solution to the "Jewish Question" is the same as was Hitler's: Kill all the Jews. We envy the Jews, can never hope to match their achievements and determination to live, and not merely "survive," we are but mere manqués pretending to live. We have no purpose in our existence but to kill, kill, kill. We have no values but the sight of Jews in pain and writhing in death.

The vicious ideology of Islam gives Hamas a specious rationale for their chosen psychosis. Israelis have proven in virtually every realm of human endeavor that they are pro-life men of reason. Reason, too, is what Hamas, ruled by an anti-life philosophy, wishes to extinguish.

SOURCE





There’s something very ugly in this rage against Israel

The line between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism gets thinner every day.

hy are Western liberals always more offended by Israeli militarism than by any other kind of militarism? It’s extraordinary. France can invade Mali and there won’t be loud, rowdy protests by peaceniks in Paris. David Cameron, backed by a whopping 557 members of parliament, can order airstrikes on Libya and British leftists won’t give over their Twitterfeeds to publishing gruesome pics of the Libyan civilians killed as a consequence. President Obama can resume his drone attacks in Pakistan, killing 13 people in one strike last month, and Washington won’t be besieged by angry anti-war folk demanding ‘Hands off Pakistan’. But the minute Israel fires a rocket into Gaza, the second Israeli politicians say they’re at war again with Hamas, radicals in all these Western nations will take to the streets, wave hyperbolic placards, fulminate on Twitter, publish pictures of dead Palestinian children, publish the names and ages of everyone ‘MURDERED BY ISRAEL’, and generally scream about Israeli ‘bloodletting’. (When the West bombs another country, it’s ‘war’; when Israel does it, it’s ‘bloodletting’.)

Anyone possessed of a critical faculty must at some point have wondered why there’s such a double standard in relation to Israeli militarism, why missiles fired by the Jewish State are apparently more worthy of condemnation than missiles fired by Washington, London, Paris, the Turks, Assad, or just about anyone else on Earth. Parisians who have generally given a Gallic shrug as French troops have basically retaken Francophone Africa, stamping their boots everywhere from the Central African Republic to Mali to Cote d’Ivoire over the past two years, turned out in their thousands at the weekend to condemn Israeli imperialism and barbarism.

Americans who didn’t create much fuss last month when the Obama administration announced the resumption of its drone attacks in Pakistan gathered at the Israeli Embassy in Washington to yell about Israeli murder. (Incredibly, they did this just a day after a US drone attack, the 375th such attack in 10 years, killed at least six people in Pakistan. But hey, Obama-led militarism isn’t as bad as Israeli militarism, and dead Pakistanis, unlike dead Palestinians, don’t deserve to have their photos, names and ages published by the concerned liberals of Twitter.) Meanwhile, hundreds of very angry Brits gathered at the Israeli Embassy in London, bringing traffic to a standstill, clambering on to buses, yelling about murder and savagery, in furious, colourful scenes that were notable by their absence three years ago when Britain sent planes to pummel Libya.

Such are the double standards over Israel, so casually entrenched is the idea that Israeli militarism is more bloody and insane than any other kind of militarism, that many Western liberals now call on their own rulers to condemn or even impose sanctions against Israel. That is, they want the invaders and destroyers of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and elsewhere to rap Israel’s knuckles for bombing Gaza. It’s like asking a great white shark to tell off a seal for eating a fish. America must ‘rein in Israel’, we are told. ‘The international community should intervene to restrain Israel’s army’, says a columnist for the Guardian, and by ‘international community’ he means ‘a meeting of the UN Security Council’ – the Security Council whose permanent members are the US, UK and France, who have done so much to destabilise and devastate vast swathes of the Middle East and North Africa over the past decade; Russia, whose recent military interventions in Georgia and Chechnya suggest it is hardly a devotee of world peace; and China, which might not invade other countries but is pretty adept at brutally suppressing internal dissent. On what planet could nations whose warmongering makes the current assault on Gaza look like a tea party in comparison seriously be asked to ‘rein in’ Israel? On a planet on which Israel is seen as different, as worse than all others, as more criminal and rogue-like than any other state.

The double standards were perfectly summed up last week in the response to an Israeli writer who said in the UK Independent that Israel’s attack on Gaza and its ‘genocidal rhetoric’ made her want to burn her Israeli passport. She got a virtual pat on the back from virtually every British activist and commentator who thinks of him or herself as decent. She was hailed as brave. Her article was shared online thousands of times. This was ‘common sense from one Jew’, people tweeted.

No one stopped to wonder if maybe they should have burned their British passports after Yugoslavia in 1999, or Afghanistan in 2001, or Iraq in 2003, where often more civilians were killed in one day than have been killed by Israel over the past week. Why should Israel’s bombing of Gaza induce such shame in Israeli citizens (or Jews, as some prefer) that burning their passports is seen as a perfectly sensible and even laudable course of action whereas it’s perfectly okay to continue bounding about the world on a British passport despite the mayhem unleashed by our military forces over the past decade? Because Israel is different; it’s worse; it’s more criminal.

Of course, Western double standards on Israel have been around for a while now. They can be seen not only in the fact that Israeli militarism makes people get out of bed and get angry in a way that no other form of militarism does, but also in the ugly boycotting of everything Israeli, whether it’s academics or apples, in a way that the people or products of other militaristic or authoritarian regimes are never treated. But during this latest Israeli assault on Gaza, we haven’t only seen these double standards come back into play – we have also witnessed anti-Israel sentiment becoming more visceral, more emotional, more unhinged and even more prejudiced than it has ever been, to such an extent that, sadly, it is now becoming very difficult to tell where anti-Zionism ends and anti-Semitism begins.

So in the latest rage against Israel, it isn’t only the Israeli state or military that have come in for some loud flak from so-called radicals – so have the Israeli people, and even the Jews. In Paris on Sunday, what started as a protest against Israel ended with violent assaults on two synagogues. In one, worshippers had to barricade themselves inside as anti-Israel activists tried to break their way in using bats and planks of wood, some of them chanting ‘Death to Jews!’. Some have tried to depict such racist behaviour as a one-off, a case of immigrants in France losing control. But on that big demo at the Israeli Embassy in London last week some attendees held placards saying ‘Zionist Media Cover Up Palestinian Holocaust’, a clear reference to the familiar anti-Semitic trope about Jews controlling the media. On an anti-Israel protest in the Netherlands some Muslim participants waved the black ISIS flag and chanted: ‘Jews, the army of Muhammad is returning.’

In the virtual world, too, the line between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism has become blurrier during this latest Gaza conflict. When a Danish journalist published a photo of what he claimed to be a group of Israelis in Sderot eating popcorn while watching Israeli missiles rain on Gaza, it became a focal point of fury with Israelis – every newspaper published the pic and Amnesty tweeted about it – and it generated the expression of some foul views. Israelis (not Israel in this case) are ‘disgraceful’, ‘murderous, racist’, ‘inhuman scum’, ‘pigs’, etc, said angry tweeters.

It wasn’t long before actual bona fide anti-Semites were getting in on this rage against Israeli people, with one racist magazine publishing the Sderot picture under the headline ‘Rat-Faced Israeli Jews Cheer and Applaud Airstrikes on Gaza Strip’. The speed with which what purported to be an anti-war sentiment aimed at Israel became a warped fury with Israeli people, and the ease with which demonstrations against Israeli militarism became slurs against or physical attacks on Jews, suggests there is something extremely unwieldy about fashionable anti-Israel sentiment, something that allows it to slip, sometimes quite thoughtlessly, from being a seemingly typical anti-war cry to being something much uglier, prejudiced and ancient in nature.

Such is the visceral nature of current anti-Israel sentiment that not only is the line between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism becoming harder to see – so is the line between fact and fiction. As the BBC has reported, the wildly popular hashtag #GazaUnderAttack, which has been used nearly 500,000 times over the past eight days to share shocking photographs of the impact of Israel’s assault on Gaza, is extremely unreliable. Some of the photos being tweeted (and then retweeted by thousands of other people) are actually from Gaza in 2009. Others show dead bodies from conflicts in Iraq and Syria. Yet all are posted with comments such as, ‘Look at Israel’s inhumanity’.

It seems the aim here is not to get to the truth of what is happening in Gaza but simply to rage, to yell, to scream, to weep about what Israel is doing (or not doing, as the case may be), and the more publicly you weep, the better, for it allows people to see how sensitive you are to Israeli barbarism. It’s about unleashing some visceral emotion, which means such petty things as accuracy and facts count for little: the expression of the emotion is all that matters, and any old photo of a dead child from somewhere in the Middle East – Iraq, Syria, Lebanon – will suffice as a prop for one’s public emotionalism.

How has this happened? How has opposing Israeli militarism gone from being one facet of a broader anti-imperialist position, as it was in the 1980s, to being the main, and sometimes only, focus of those who claim to be anti-war? Why does being opposed to Israel so often and so casually tip over into expressions of disgust with the Israeli people and with the Jews more broadly? It’s because, today, rage with Israel is not actually a considered political position. It is not a thought-through take on a conflict zone in the Middle East and how that conflict zone might relate to realpolitik or global shifts in power. Rather, it has become an outlet for the expression of a general feeling of fury and exhaustion with everything - with Western society, modernity, nationalism, militarism, humanity.

Israel has been turned into a conduit for the expression of Western self-loathing, Western colonial guilt, Western self-doubt. It has been elevated into the most explicit expression of what are now considered to be the outdated Western values of militaristic self-preservation and progressive nationhood, and it is railed against and beaten down for embodying those values. It is held responsible, not simply for repressing the Palestinian desire for statehood, but for continuing to pursue virtues that we sensible folk in the rest of the West have apparently outgrown and for consequently being the source of war and terrorism not only in the Middle East but pretty much everywhere. A poll of Europeans discovered that most now consider Israel to be the key source of global instability.

This is where we can see what the new anti-Zionism shares in common with the old anti-Semitism: both are about finding one thing in the world, whether it’s a wicked state or a warped people, against which the rest of us might rage and pin the blame for every political problem on Earth.

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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Sunday, July 20, 2014


Great news:  The world's most politically incorrect politician has just been exonerated


One of Silvio's friends, Ruby the Heart Stealer

An Italian court has thrown out Silvio Berlusconi’s conviction for paying for sex with an underage prostitute at his notorious “bunga bunga” parties and for abusing his office by having her released from police custody.

The former prime minister was last year sentenced to seven years in jail being found guilty on both charges by a lower court, but the conviction was overturned by the appeals court in Milan.

The 77-year-old billionaire had been accused of paying for sex with a teenage, Moroccan-born nightclub dancer nicknamed Ruby the Heart Stealer.

He was also accused of putting pressure on officers in a police station in Milan to let her go when she was later arrested on a theft charge.

He told them she was the grand-daughter of Hosni Mubarak, the then Egyptian leader, and that her detention could cause an international incident.

Many legal experts, and most of the Italian media, had expected that the court would uphold the original conviction, although perhaps with a lesser jail sentence.

But instead the panel of judges in Milan rejected the convictions entirely, saying there was no evidence to substantiate the charges.

“Berlusconi acquitted! Finally, the truth,” was the reaction on Twitter of one of his staunchest supporters, Daniela Santanche, an MP on the centre-Right.

“I’m very satisfied, it is a full acquittal and goes beyond my most optimistic expectations,” Franco Coppi, one of the former premier’s lawyers, said.

Mr Berlusconi was not in court for the verdict. He spent the morning performing social services at a home outside Milan for elderly people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

He goes to the centre at least once a week as part of a community service sentence for a tax fraud conviction linked to his business empire, Mediaset.

Shortly after the acquittal was announced in court, he left the residence by car, but said nothing to journalists.

The court in Milan now has 90 days in which to release the reasoning behind its decision.

SOURCE






The false rape claims come thick and fast in Britain

A mother has been jailed for four years after falsely claiming her boyfriend had raped her 14 times in a bid for revenge after their baby was taken into care.

Former Tesco worker Heather Gibson, 29, of Grimsby, Lincolnshire, was told by a judge that her actions had made it more difficult for real victims of rape to be believed in court.

Her former partner Gavin Plaistowe, 30, was held in police custody for 35 hours after she accused him of 12 rapes. Mr Plaistowe waited a month for police to investigate and find he was innocent.

While on bail, Gibson claimed Morrisons worker Mr Plaistowe then raped her twice - while she awaited trial for perverting the course of justice.

But CCTV of Gibson at work in the supermarket undermined her accounts. She alleged two gang rapes on two occasions - the last time with six men, Hull Crown Court was told yesterday.

Mr Plaistowe could have been jailed for 20 years if the allegations had been true.

But Gibson later confessed to a friend she blamed Mr Plaistowe for losing her child into care because she had made a complaint about him dropping the baby. Social Services took the baby into care for lack of parenting skills.

Gibson, a former grammar school pupil, sought revenge with the false claims to the police. But when she was charged with perverting the course of justice, she forged a string of letters.

They purported to be from officials including a crown court judge, a police officer, a justice minister and even Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

They were sent to Bath and North Somerset Social Services, where her daughter was in temporary residence. They claimed she had been the subject of wrongful allegations and expressed outrage she had been charged. They were all found to be produced by Gibson.

She even took police to the spot of one of the alleged rapes, saying she had dragged by the hair and her bottom lip had been bitten. Gibson gave detailed accounts of each rape in video interview, but admitted she had showered after the attacks and lost all forensic evidence.

She claimed to have details of contacts of witnesses in a cupcake-shaped notebook. However, the police recovered CCTV of her buying the notebook from a supermarket the day after she told them of its existence.

The first rape she claimed happened when she was eight months pregnant by Mr Plaistowe. She said she was raped again after giving birth and on two occasions in April 2012 - first by Mr Plaistowe and four friends then by Mr Plaistowe and five others.

He was arrested on April 4, 2012 and held in Grimsby Police Station from 12.20am until 6.26pm the following evening - a period of 18 hours. Such were the number of allegations he was re-arrested on April 26 2012 at 6.30am and released at 11.30pm after 17 hours.

He did not know how seriously the police were treating the claims until May 4, 2012 - exactly one month later. Gibson pleaded guilty to four counts of doing an act tending to pervert the course of justice as specimens of her conduct.

Simon Kealey, prosecuting, said two Humberside Police officers had spent eight weeks investigating the case. There had been two police interviews of Mr Plaistowe, three interviews of Gibson and a large amount of case preparation for a trial.

Mr Kealey said it had diverted police attention and all this was in addition to the terror Mr Plaistow had suffered. He said Gibson would not get back her daughter.

In her pre-sentence report, Gibson showed no remorse. She said all her allegations were true, despite her guilty pleas - and that she had only pleaded guilty to get everything sorted quickly.

Joanne Golding, defending, said Gibson had no mental health problems which could allow the judge to find a different sentencing option - although there were clearly issues.

‘It seems to me the catalyst of this was the taking of the baby into care,’ said Mrs Golding. ‘The consequences of this were catastrophic. What she alleged against Mr Plaistowe was actually impossible. However, I have to concede there was a degree of persistence and subterfuge.’

She admitted Gibson had since found a new boyfriend, was engaged - and he was visiting her in New Hall Prison in Flockton, West Yorkshire, cycling 174 miles in a round trip to see her, taking four days.

She claimed she fell pregnant by him in January, before she was remanded in custody, although prison officials say a series of pregnancy tests are negative.

Sentencing, Judge Graham Robinson told Gibson: ‘Allegations of rape and other sexual matters have to be treated seriously by the police. They have no option. To do otherwise would open them up to complaints. In this case it took two CID officers six to eight weeks to get to the bottom of the allegations.

'There were other uniform officers doing interviews. There were two medical examinations, but it goes beyond all that. When a woman cries rape it dishonours the genuine victims of rape. You have no right to deserve the sympathy given to those women. You have no place among their number.

‘The Lord Chief Justice said once the public realise there are women, such as you, who are prepared to make false allegations of rape, it causes juries, in cases of genuine rape, to think twice.

‘It can no longer be said that women will not lie about such things. You make cases where women genuinely have been raped harder. This was a serious case - Mr Plaistowe must have been terrified.’

SOURCE






An Iranian in Exile Takes On a British MP.

Ever since the Iranian monarchy fell to a radical Islamic revolution, I have chafed over the nonsense that has passed for history. It has become accepted that Shah Mohammad Pahlavi was evil and that the west had sustained him for too long. I also flinch when Iranians insist that their travails were caused by either the British, the Americans, or the Israelis. This is a failure to take responsibility for the nation's own folly in allowing Islamists to take control.

One such exile living in the UK, Reza Pardisan, has sent an open letter to Jack Straw, a British member of parliament, who recently returned from a visit to Iran where he compared Tehran to Athens or Madrid. He was promoting the notion that Iran is just like Greece or Spain, a view that is not only a fantasy, but dangerously wrong-headed. 

Pardisan challenges this comparison, asking about the following facts on the ground:

o     Tehran's deadly air pollution, which has killed at least 80,000 people so far, a number provided by the Tehran government itself.  Even Athens does not have such a deadly situation; they have passed laws to ameliorate it.

o     Suicide rates, in Iran averaging 25 per week among 18-28 years old.  Are the Greek or Spanish young killing themselves in such numbers?  Does Jack Straw ask why?

o     Exile.  Since the Ayatollah Khomeini took over (1979), more than 7 million fled. The exiled include the best and brightest, a real loss to a third-world country.

o     Drug addiction is burgeoning in Iran.  Is it in Athens or Madrid? Opium and opiates are back with a vengeance. Under the Pahlavis, this was not so.

o     Mass hangings from building cranes, 2,000 in 1988 alone, and a constant stream since then.

o     How about comparing the lack of political and basic freedoms in Iran with Spain and Greece?   How about rates of inflation, poverty, and homelessness among children living in the streets? 

o     Human rights comparisons: do the Greeks or Spanish imprison or execute rape victims or homosexuals?  Iran does. They also murder journalists who offend the government.

Like many in the West, England and the United States have bought into the nonsense that they were solely responsible for the fall of the Mossadegh government in 1953, ignoring the fact that Mossadegh was incompetent and was dangerously flirting with a Soviet takeover. Iranians themselves took down Mossadegh and the returning shah did not execute him, but remanded him to his vast estates to live out his final years. What Islamist leader would have done the same? Iranian clerics are nothing if not vindictive.

Like most educated Iranians, Pardisan has a very long memory. He urges Jack Straw to apologize for England's real offenses when Iran was weak, from 1700-1926. There were many interventions in Iran's affairs during that time because the modern Europeans had the power to do so and empire was the mode of the  times. Both the British and the Russians played at this. Russia has resurrected this practice now, as we can see in the Ukraine and coming soon, Central Asia.

It is futile to apologize for issues that took place at another time and during another sort of world. However, we could begin to correct errors with unforeseen consequences by revisiting historic policies.

Our main mistake is to believe that "democracy" is what every country craves and should have. Authoritarian governments, including the late Shah's, did more to further national development and thriving middle classes than any democracy at the time could have done. The late Shah, like the military dictatorships in Taiwan and South Korea, believed that he must fix the economy first----and then have democracy. Those who opted for "freedom first" got only anarchy---or, like the unfortunate Iran, a very nasty religious dictatorship.

In the Middle East, freedom means freedom for men to do what they please. It never includes women or children. Responsibility and duty have nothing to do with it. It is the fault of their cultures and they need to quit blaming us for their own follies.

SOURCE






Britain 'one of the most traditional countries in the world', research suggests

Britain is one of the most traditional countries in the world, beaten only by Russia and China, research suggests. The findings emerged in a survey, described as the largest of its kind, of more than 16,000 participants in 20 countries, including the UK.

Asked whether traditions are an important part of society, China (90 per cent), Russia (82 per cent) and Britain (80 per cent) rated it most important in the survey by Ipsos Global.

Most agree that it is up to everybody to work out their own set of principles to guide their decisions (79 per cent) – although this falls to 61 per cent in Japan, the inaugural Ipsos Mori Global Trends Report said.

Across 20 countries polled, around half of those interviewed (47per cent) say religion/faith is very important to them, while 45 per cent disagree. Religion now divides the world – into countries where faith dominates, like Brazil, South Africa and Turkey, and those that are more secular, like Japan and Sweden.

In terms of family values, the poll found other divisions emerging across the world: almost six in ten globally agree that there is little difference between being married and living together without being married (56 per cent, although 38 per cent disagree).

Variation between countries is considerable: agreement rises to 74 per cent among the Belgians, but drops to 25 per cent in South Korea.

However, when it comes to children, there is a marginal swing towards a more traditional view: 59 per cent agree it is better for parents of children to be married than unmarried (32 per cent disagree).

The notion of tradition itself remains universally attractive with globally eight in 10 (78 per cent) seeing traditions as an important part of society with 17 per cent disagreeing, with relatively little country variation.

Over two thirds (68 per cent) of those believing tradition is important agree that "people led happier lives in the old days when they had few problems to cope with".

This rises to 90 per cent among supporters of tradition in Turkey and falls to 50 per cent in Japan.

The inaugural Ipsos Mori Global Trends Report covered attitudes to technology, privacy, tradition, health, simplicity, globalisation, inequality, trust and brands.

Ipsos MORI chief Executive, Ben Page concluded: “Against a pessimistic backdrop, this report shows the global public’s tendency towards nostalgia, allied to a strong sense that traditions are important, and a desire for a slower pace of life and simplification. How do brands and governments offer this?

“Nostalgia should not be over-stated though; in both developed (42 per cent) and emerging (47 per cent) economies, many do not want their country to be the way it used to be. But 77 per cent think the world is changing too fast and 48 per cent that they often feel overwhelmed with life choices. Nostalgia possibly comes from the faux certainty of the past; we think that most people do not want to go back, but they do want more clarity about what the future holds. And they want help in navigating the choices available.”

In terms of the economy, despite Britain’s own economy reaching new levels of output, real wages remain lagging behind and only 19 per cent predict they personally will benefit from growth in 2014.

It also found most people admit they are "constantly" looking at a screen and crave a simpler, slower lifestyle

With technology, the country that agrees most with the statement “I am constantly looking at screens these days” is China (78 per cent).

Many consumers in emerging markets have skipped desktop and laptop computers and use smart devices as their primary route to the internet. As such, their activities on these devices are slightly different to those in more established economies.

For example when asked about their uses of mobile phones, an average of 19 per cent across Brazil, Russia, India and China say that they watch live or demand TV of full TV shows on their phones. This compares to just 11 per cent in Britain. And because of the increased size of the screen, this ‘BRIC’ group (Brazil, Russia, India and China) are even more likely to watch TV on their tablets (60 per cent compared to 47 per cent in Britain.)

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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Friday, July 18, 2014


The latest false rape claim from Britain

Internet dater who cried rape when a man crept out of a hotel room after they had sex because she didn’t match her online profile is jailed for 18 months


I'd walk out on her too

An internet dater who cried rape when a man crept out of a hotel room after they had sex because she didn’t match her online profile has been jailed.

Emily Pike, 23, met Tom Mills online before they arranged to meet in person at a Premier Inn at Cribbs Causeway in Bristol to spend the night together.

However, after deciding Pike didn’t match the description on her dating profile, Mr Mills fled the hotel and later sent her a text to say he was helping a friend in an emergency.

Pike then contacted the police and claimed the 24-year-old had raped her in the hotel and car park .

However, CCTV images proved she was lying and she was jailed for 18 months at Bristol Crown Court for perverting the course of justice.

In sentencing yesterday, Judge Julian Lambert told her: ‘You know it is wrong to lie and it is wrong to lie and get somebody into trouble. Lie about rape and you are getting somebody into big trouble.

‘Whether you couldn’t learn, or you didn’t learn, your web of falsehoods led to a young man being arrested for rape.  ‘He was at risk of many years of prison and he spent 12 hours in custody.’

The court heard how the pair had initially arranged to meet in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, for a sexual tryst in October 2011.

But when they couldn’t find a room they checked into the Premier Inn at Cribbs Causeway, Bristol, to have sex.

However, Pike awoke after the encounter to find Mr Mills had vanished.

Anna Midgley, prosecuting, said: ‘After he left Miss Pike alone she tried to call him. He sent her texts, saying he had to help a friend in accident and emergency.

‘After, she called the police. She made an allegation he raped her.  ‘She said she had consensual phone sex and when she arrived at the Premier Inn he forced himself on her.

‘She said they left together and he raped her a second time in the passenger seat of his car.’

Mr Mills was arrested and subjected to medical samples, swabs and hours of questioning, the court heard.

But when police looked at the hotel CCTV, they saw the pair did not leave together and telephone messages did not back up Pike’s claims.

The court heard Pike, from Caerphilly, south Wales, has 15 previous convictions which include an earlier false rape claim which she had apologised for.

James Tucker, defending Pike, said she had a history for telling ‘fantastic lies’ and also claimed to have married a man in Iraq.

‘She understands what she is doing is intended to pervert the course of justice. Why she is doing it is seemingly lost upon her,’ he said, adding she had a personality disorder issues.

‘She is an incredibly vulnerable person.

‘She is acutely vulnerable at her own hands. Prison will punish her and open her eyes as to understanding why she is offending in the way she is.’

After the court hearing, Detective Constable Richard Worrin said: ‘We take all reports of sexual assault and rape very seriously and this case should not deter people with genuine complaints coming forward to us.

‘In this case, the allegations of rape were proved untrue through CCTV evidence and not by Emily Pike’s own admission.

‘I would like to stress that prosecutions such as this are extremely rare but false allegations of rape undermine the experiences of actual victims and can have a devastating impact on those who are wrongly accused.’

SOURCE






SHOCKING ANTI-SEMITIC HATEFEST IN DOWNTOWN SEATTLE

JEWS DEPICTED AS EATING GENTILE BABIES AND DRINKING THEIR BLOOD.

At the original source there are a heap of photos showing what is alleged

As Hamas Rockets continued to rain down on Israeli population centers, a large anti-Israel rally took place in Seattle’s Westlake Center this Saturday, July 12. Protesters screamed anti-Israel slogans calling for the destruction of the Jewish state while waving signs and marching through the downtown sidewalks. But this was more than a rally in opposition to Israel or her defensive operations.   The signs being waved and the chants hollered  constituted a shocking public display of shameless Jew hatred right  in the heart of Seattle.

Signs comparing Jews to Nazis were commonplace

This sign (below) compares Jews defending themselves to the Nazi slaughter of Jews. “It would be my greatest sadness to see Zionist Jews do to Palestinian Arabs much of what the Nazis did to Jews“.

Comparing Israel's defense against a rain of rockets to the systematic gassing and murder of European Jewry.

The truth was in short supply.  Many posters asserted that Israel had halted food and medicine to Gaza during the current Hamas provoked conflagration.

While supplying one’s enemy in a time of war seems to The Mike Report to border on insanity,  according to Ynet “Israel has allowed some 200 trucks to cross into the strip, including some 200,000 liters of fuel daily, in an attempt to prevent a humanitarian crisis in Gaza”. Israel continues to provide medical services to Gaza residents. “Over 20 Palestinians, including eight Gazan children were treated at Haifa’s Rambam Medical Center, as part of Israel’s longstanding cooperation with the Palestinian Authority”.

Classic anti-Semitic themes of Jewish greed were on display.

While you may have thought that  blood libel accusations are a relic of the past, in fact the slander was alive and well in downtown Seattle this past Saturday. The below poster depicts a Jew eating a gentile child along with a cup of blood to wash it all down.

Another common theme at Seattle’s pro-Hamas rally was the accusation that Jewish organizations support murder.  (below).

This sign (below) accuses Israel of Genocide “Genocide is not justice” and then promotes genocide  “From the River to the Sea Palestine will be free“. The river is the Jordan, the sea is the Mediterranean and the goal is a Jew free Middle East.

This sign accuses Israel of genocide and then advocates for the extermination of the Jewish state. 

This Hamas sympathizer hauling a sign advocating non violence at an anti-Semitic hatefest wins the 2014 irony award.

SOURCE






The maddest reshuffle in living memory

David Cameron, Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, has just changed whom he will have in charge of various governmental matters.  And in the  new Cabinet, biology seems to count for more than conviction:  A triumph for feminism

Given the big-name repute of the various political carcasses UK prime minister David Cameron has been either unceremoniously chucking out of the Cabinet or casting down the ministerial food chain, many observers have been quick to christen it Cameron’s ‘night of the long knives’. (A reference not to the murderous Nazi purge of 1934, but to Tory prime minister Harold Macmillan’s sudden decision in 1962 to replace a third of his cabinet, including chancellor Selwyn Lloyd, his friend and one-time confidant.)

So out have gone perma-leadership candidate Kenneth Clarke; Damian Green, the policing minister; Dominic Grieve, the attorney general; and David Willetts, the universities and science minister. And, more striking still, down have gone William Hague, demoted from foreign secretary to leader of the Commons, and Michael Gove, shunted from education secretary to chief whip. In the place of these ‘old lags’, as Tory sources described them to one broadsheet, stand Cameron’s new(ish) guard – a mixture of men whose main appeal is that no one really knows them yet, and, far more PR-worthy in government eyes, some women whose main appeal, apart from the fact that no one really knows them yet (sometime TV presenter Esther McVey excepted), is that they are, well, women.

But this was not another night of the long knives. The historical analogies do not do Cameron’s Cabinet reshuffle the justice it deserves. For this kicking out of might-as-well-be-dead white men in favour of slightly younger men, and a few women whose main selling point thus far seems to be what’s between their legs, is historically unprecedented. It’s unprecedented in its fatuousness; it’s unprecedented in its superficiality; and it’s unprecedented in its cowardly kowtowing to the prevailing wind of commentariat sentiment.

Previous Cabinet reshuffles, as baffling as they might have appeared to those outside the Palace of Westminster, were at least motivated by a degree of political principle. Macmillan rid himself of his old lags because he felt they lacked ‘fire in their bellies’. Tory prime minister Margaret Thatcher was in perpetual conflict with the ‘wets’ in her cabinet, who felt, in the words of the sacked Ian Gilmour, that Thatcher’s ‘economic liberalism’, ‘because of its starkness and its failure to create a sense of community’, was likely to ‘repel’ people. Even the mind-numbing ministerial churn of the New Labour years was by and large driven by the imperatives of office politics – of who was in favour, and who was out.

But Cameron’s decision, less than a year before the next General Election, is almost entirely devoid of any party-political principle, indeed of any principle at all. Instead, this new, flashier, leggier cabinet was motivated by little more than a desire to appease liberal media opinion. Cameron and his cronies have, effectively, caved in. So to the countless commentators who have lined up to lambast the Conservatives for creating a government composed of privately educated men – or ‘Etonian toffs’, as today’s class-war-lite perception has it, Cameron has bowed down. Out went some old-ish poshos, and in came some younger men and women, a couple of whom, we are told a little too keenly, even went to state school.

And, in a move as spectacularly shallow as any this most skin-deep of politicians has made, Cameron has even taken on board the hyped-up loathing of education secretary Michael Gove and got rid. It didn’t matter that Gove had been in the post for four, committed years; it didn’t matter that the supposed animosity towards Gove emanated from what Gove himself called the blob – a coagulation of unions, teacher trainers and bien pensant commentators – and not from the public at large. It didn’t matter that Cameron no doubt thought, somewhere in the recesses of his mind untouched by the imperatives of PR, that what Gove was doing was probably right. The bad vibes coming Gove’s way were too much. So, just like that, Cameron got rid of him. Today’s papers are even suggesting that Gove was shunted into the parliamentary shadows on the basis of advice from Lynton Crosby, the Tories’ election campaign director, who apparently has been doing some polling. Which is more than many thought he was doing.

What’s interesting about the demotion of Gove is that Gove himself is that rare thing among contemporary politicians. He actually believes in something beyond the needs of the party-political machine. For Gove, it really did look as if the end of party politics is not to be elected (or re-elected); that is merely the means to change something. Politics here was, incredibly, more of a vocation than a career. He had a vision of how things ought to be, and in his role as education secretary, he sought to realise that vision. He wanted to put a bit of subject-based knowledge back into education; he wanted to restore to exams a little bit of credibility; he wanted, in short, to improve the lives of the nation’s young. Whether you agree with him or not, there is no doubting the depth of his commitment.

And yet, in a near comic inversion of the way things ought to be, Gove’s commitment to his brief, his willingness to put his political beliefs above the parapet, is precisely what has cost him his job. Cameron couldn’t stand the moderate heat of the media kitchen, so he whipped Gove out and plonked someone called Nicky Morgan in his place. It’s a profoundly telling switch. Gove was demoted because he represented ‘ideas’; Morgan has been promoted because she represents something non-ideological. That is, she represents her gender. She is not being heralded as a great believer in the importance of teaching chronological history or of getting to grips with difficult literature; she is being heralded because of something she had no control over – her biology.

In this, one can glimpse the debasement of the concept of political representation, of what it means, in a democracy, for elected politicians to represent something. It used to mean that a politician represented people’s aspirations and interests. In the words of that old Tory Edmund Burke, it used to mean that ‘[the people’s] wishes ought to have great weight with [the politician]; their opinion, high respect; their business, unremitted attention. It is his duty to sacrifice his repose, his pleasures, his satisfactions, to theirs; and above all, ever, and in all cases, to prefer their interest to his own.’ It used to mean that a politician represented the ideas of conscious social constituency. But, as this most bizarre of Cabinet reshuffles reveals, political representation no longer refers to the intentional representation of ideas in the work of government; no, it now means the representation of the mere facts of one’s life, from one’s gender to one’s ethnicity. In the dread words of Cameron, ‘Parliament needs to be more representative of our country – so we need more women in parliament’.

Cameron’s Cabinet reshuffle is nothing short of the triumph of identity politics over a politics of ideas.

SOURCE





British supermarket apologises after Muslim checkout worker refused to sell customer ham and wine because it was Ramadan

Tesco has issued an apology after a Muslim worker refused to sell a customer ham and wine because of Ramadan.

Mother-of-three Julie Cottle went into her local store to stock up, but was left stunned when a checkout employee insisted he couldn't serve her.

Muslims worldwide are currently fasting for Ramadan - the holy ninth month of the Islamic calendar where devotees abstain from eating and drinking during daylight hours.

Ms Cottle was forced to use the self-service checkout in the Tesco Express in Neasden, north-west London, after the worker reportedly 'walked off'.

She told the Brent and Kilburn Times: 'He pointed at the ham and wine in my basket and said "I can't serve you that because I'm fasting".

'When I told him he should be serving customers not turning them away he still refused telling me to go to the self-service. I was furious.'

In a statement, a spokesman for Tesco said: 'We don't have a specific policy and take a pragmatic approach if a colleague raises concerns about a job they have been asked to do.

'We apologise to our customer for any inconvenience on this occasion.'

The supermarket giant confirmed 'the colleague would be spoken to' but refused to say if any further action would be taken.

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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