Saturday, July 7, 2007

If you want Live Earth to fail, John Mayer says

Enviro: You are a bad evil person!

"I hope that for all the cynicism that's existed around this subject, we can all uncross our arms long enough to give this event a chance to impact the world in the way that I'm beginning to feel that it could. Now isn't the time to dissect the rights and wrongs. (If you're hoping Live Earth doesn't work, you have a lot of soul-searching to do.)

With this kind of lineup, there's no cause or crisis that wouldn't be positively affected by an event of this scope. Live Earth isn't a show - it's a showing, a presentation of an idea. Artists like us don't just get together to each play 20 minute sets every weekend, you know. We're also usually pretty sensitive about the order in which we take the stage, and I've got no problems with my 5:12 PM set time. The Police, Bon Jovi, Alicia Keys, Kanye West, and yes, myself and my dumb face are all openers for the true headliner - the power to literally change the world's mind."

Says the guy who has a

And to anybody ready to cut me down for this, here's my full disclosure: I drive a Porsche SUV, I still drink lots of bottled water, and I will be flying private charter several times during my summer tour. However, my bus has been converted to Bio-Diesel, and I'll be coming up with even more ways to adapt to the Light Green mentality before I set out for the summer.

I guarantee if you said you can save the climate by throwing babies off a roof, these rock stars and Hollywood liberals would be the first in line to do so.

Hamas paid ransom for Alan Johnston.

Middle East: $5 million is a small price to pay for BBC positive coverage.

Sources close to Jaysh Al-Islam have revealed that the organization received $5 million and a million Kalashnikov rifle bullets in a deal for the release of BBC correspondent Alan Johnston.

According to Palestinian sources, Jaysh Al-Islam commander Mumtaz Daghmoush received a guarantee from Hamas that he would not stand trial for crimes he was suspected of carrying out, and that Hamas would release Jaysh Al-Islam’s spokesman, whom it was holding.

Further, Hamas and Jaysh Al-Islam agreed not to reveal which operations they had carried out jointly.

via LGF

Friday, July 6, 2007

UK meetings of imams and Muslim community activists

UK: I want to say about time, but reading Bunglawala column it looks like a new way to wrap up old complaints and perceived grievances in a new set of clothing to try and fool people. The tired mantra of its because of foreign policy is getting ripped in the comments. But this part bugged me.

Neoconservative writers along with some secular Muslims have tried to downplay the impact of these policies. On Tuesday on Cif, Asim Siddiqui queried why "Islamists" in the UK - if they were so troubled by the suffering of Muslims overseas - were not marching to demonstrate their opposition to what is happening in Darfur.

"Where is their outrage at the 400,000 Muslims slaughtered in Darfur? ... It is nowhere to be seen because the Darfurians have been massacred by fellow Muslims, not by the west ... Such is the moral bankruptcy of this [Islamist] ideology."

I would suggest that the answer to Asim's question is surely that ordinary Britons (Muslim or otherwise) have a far greater incentive to protest if they believe that it will actually help towards influencing the resolution of a conflict. It is understandable why people would seek to influence the actions of our own government in the UK when it is directly involved in a conflict overseas. It is surely also understandable that if a conflict overseas has little or nothing to do with our own government in the UK, as in the Chechnya or Darfur conflicts, then people will, in general, be far less motivated to protest.

The Mohammed cartoons had nothing to do with the UK but he and other groups praised the papers for not running them and protesting the cartoons/Denmark. But Darfur is mainly Arab Muslims vs Black Muslims so groups like the O.I.C come to the defense of Sudan and others saying it is an imperialist/zionist plot against Sudan pointing out the genocide.

Nothing new will come from these meetings except new ways to deflect blame.

Two other writers blast the its all about Iraq meme that come from Muslim groups on the reason of radicalised Islamists.

Stemming the tide of terror
Judea Pearl July 6, 2007 4:00 PM
A sense of grievance over Iraq is part of the story behind Islamist terror, but it is distorted and exaggerated - which Muslim leaders must counter.

The Bosnian connection
Brendan O'Neill July 6, 2007 7:00 PM
Far from being radicalised by the failure of the west to act, large numbers of Muslims were radicalised by western intervention in the Balkans.

Al Qaeda fanatics working in UK police force.

Terrorism: Lets hear it for rushing to diversity.

Up to eight police officers and civilian staff are suspected of links to extremist groups including Al Qaeda.

Some are even believed to have attended terror training camps in Pakistan or Afghanistan.

Their names feature on a secret list of alleged radicals said to be working in the Metropolitan and other forces.

The dossier was drawn up with the help of MI5 amid fears that individuals linked to Islamic extremism are taking advantage of police attempts to increase the proportion of ethnic staff.

Astonishingly, many of the alleged jihadists have not been sacked because - it is claimed - police do not have the "legal power" to dismiss them.

We can also reveal that one suspected jihadist officer working in the South East has been allowed to keep his job despite being caught circulating Internet images of beheadings and roadside bombings in Iraq.

He is said to have argued that he was trying to "enhance" debate about the war.

Classified intelligence reports raising concerns about police staff's background cannot be used to justify their dismissal, sources said.

....The disclosure will raise concerns about the system for vetting new recruits, each of whom is the subject of counter-terrorism checks to ensure they are suitable to join the police. Scotland Yard's vetting unit is regarded as one of the best in the country.

But sources said it is often impossible to carry out satisfactory checks on recruits who were raised overseas or who have spent considerable periods out of Britain before applying to join the Met.

In such cases, the Met has to rely on overseas agencies to carry out intelligence checks on their behalf. Privately, officials doubt whether certain countries in Africa, Middle East or the Indian sub-continent are able to carry out meaningful vetting.

As a result of the Stephen Lawrence public inquiry report, which accused the Met of being "institutionally racist", Scotland Yard has in recent years employed thousands of officers and civilian staff from the ethnic minorities in an attempt to reach recruitment targets.

Al-Qaida video reflects group's troubles

Terrorism: Via the AP no less.

BAGHDAD - A new video by al-Qaida's deputy leader Thursday left no doubt about what the terror network claims is at stake in Iraq — describing it as a centerpiece of its anti-American fight and insisting the Iraqi insurgency is under its direct leadership.

But the proclamations by Ayman al-Zawahri carried another unintended message: reflecting the current troubles confronting the Sunni extremists in Iraq, experts said.

The Islamic State of Iraq, the insurgent umbrella group that is claimed by al-Qaida, has faced ideological criticism from some militants, and rival armed groups have even joined U.S. battles against it. A U.S.-led offensive northwest of Baghdad — in one of the Islamic State's strongholds — may have temporarily disrupted and scattered insurgent forces.

"Some of the developments suggest that it (the Islamic State) is more fragile than it was before," said Bruce Hoffman, a Washington-based terrorism expert at the Rand Corp. think tank.

But congress critters can't wait to gleefully run like scared cowards from Iraq. Just wonderful, not that I'm going to be dismissive of people like Domenici or Lugar. I am all for a change in tactics, but if its going to be the anti-war Dems cut and run dressed up for show. It will bite America back hard and the blame will fall squarely on them.

The $54 Million Pants Suit That Wouldn't Die

Nation: Enough already, the guy may have some sort of complex in pursuing this case. This is beyond ridiculous now.

He's baaaa-ack: Roy Pearson, the D.C. administrative law judge who filed, fought and lost a $54 million lawsuit against the Korean immigrants who own his neighborhood dry cleaners, chose the Fourth of July holiday to make it clear that he will not be going away.

Despite a clear finding by D.C. Superior Court Judge Judith Bartnoff that Pearson's case against Custom Cleaners had no merit and that the cleaners' possible misplacing of a pair of Pearson's pants was not worth a penny to the plaintiff, Pearson is back. He wrote to defense lawyer Christopher Manning this week to let the Chung family know that Pearson plans to file today a motion arguing that Bartnoff failed to address Pearson's legal claims and asking the judge to reverse her verdict in the case.

Manning, who has said that the Chungs have already been wiped out financially by the need to defend themselves against Pearson's two-year legal jihad, responded to Pearson by asking that he end the misery for the Chungs, who face legal bills of more than $100,000. Manning asked Pearson to consider moving on, for the Chungs' sake and for his own.

But Pearson was unimpressed and responded to Manning that he will continue to fight in the best interests of all Washington residents. Pearson apparently continues to believe that his crusade to get rich off an immigrant family's small business would somehow better the lives of all D.C. residents.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

The BBC starts the push for cuddling Hamas.

Terrorism: What a master PR move by Hamas, the BBC will be licking its boots for years.

Now that Alan Johnston is free, Hamas hopes it has delivered several messages - the first is to any potential rivals in Gaza about who is boss.

The second, and most important of all for Palestinians, is that it is dedicated to ending the appalling lawlessness of the last few years.

The third message, aimed at the outside world, is that the release of Alan Johnston shows that Hamas is responsible, and powerful.

It hopes to make itself impossible to ignore - and vital to engage.

More at Media blog at National Review.

British lawmakers urge talks with Hamas

A day after the release of a kidnapped BBC reporter by the Hamas government in Gaza, 20 British Parliament members called for talks with Hamas.The Parliament members, from across the political spectrum, put forward a motion in the House of Commons urging international engagement with Hamas, which Britain considers a terrorist group.

19,000 people murdered in South Africa past 12 months.

Crime: Via Reuters.

Murders, carjackings and bank robberies rose in South Africa in the past 12 months, dealing a blow to efforts to reduce one of the world's highest crime rates before the country hosts the 2010 soccer World Cup.

Data from the South African Police Service released on Tuesday showed the murder rate was up 2.4 percent in the 12 months ending March 31, 2007. There were 19,202 murders in that period, compared with 18,528 in the previous 12 months.

South African authorities also reported bank robberies more than doubled and house robberies jumped 25 percent. Carjackings -- one of the crimes that frightens South Africans the most -- rose 6 percent.

The rise in certain types of violent crimes was a setback for police, who had targeted a 7 percent to 10 percent annual decrease for serious crimes.

South African officials noted, however, there had been a decrease in rapes, common robberies and several types of assault.

"The report on crime trends showed that crime levels in South Africa continue to drop. We are deeply concerned though that crime continues to be rife and that the crime rate continues to be high," Safety and Security Minister Charles Nqakula told a news conference after the report was released.

Africa's biggest economy is battling some of the worst crime rates in the world: some 50 people are murdered and around 150 women report being raped every day according to a report released in March by the Institute for Security Studies.


Analysts say the country's crime troubles are closely tied to widespread poverty and unemployment that continue to plague most of the population some 13 years after the end of white apartheid rule.

"There are various reasons for the crime problem we have in South Africa, and other parts of the world and that is poverty, unemployment, the influx of people into urban areas and the influx of illegal immigrants," University of South Africa Criminology Professor Coen Marais said.

"What seems to be a problem is that there is a culture of violence at the moment in South Africa and no respect at all for law enforcement," he added.

The sobering data came less than six months after President Thabo Mbeki acknowledged that many South Africans were living in fear of being murdered, raped or assaulted by criminals and vowed to beef up the police to make streets safer.

Over 100 people convicted or on trial for terrorism in UK.

Terrorism: Thats a lot of people getting caught and tried in a short period of time.

"....The investigation into the foiled car-bomb plots has dominated media coverage in the last week, all but drowning out the news of the latest verdicts. In part that is because terrorism trials have become almost commonplace; Britain is awash in them. More than 100 people have recently been convicted, or are currently on trial, awaiting trial or facing verdicts in more than two dozen terrorism-related cases here.

A verdict is expected soon in one of the biggest cases: that of six men accused of the botched suicide bombing attempts on London’s subways and buses on July 21, 2005. The failed attacks — in which the bombs did not explode — took place exactly two weeks after the July 7 attacks that killed 56 people, including four perpetrators.

Another big case, that of the suspects accused in the audacious plot to use liquid bombs to blow up planes over the Atlantic last summer, has not yet gone to trial.

Meanwhile, seven men were sentenced to prison terms ranging from 15 to 26 years last month for their roles as accomplices to a Qaeda terrorist planning attacks on targets in Britain and the United States, including the New York Stock Exchange and the headquarters of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. And in April, five men were found guilty of planning fertilizer-bomb attacks on targets around London, including a major suburban shopping center and a popular London nightclub.

The sheer number of cases shows how difficult it is for the authorities to keep on top of the activities of would-be terrorists in this country.

While many of the suspects appear to be motivated by the same ideology — hatred of the West and support for violent jihad directed at targets symbolizing what they regard as Western power or decadence — the individual plots are hard to unravel. Relationships are complicated. Suspects work together or individually, with other Britons or people from abroad, often connected by evidence on computers or cellphones that requires painstaking investigation before charges can be brought.

“We are not looking at discrete terrorist cells that can be investigated, isolated and dismantled,” Peter Clarke, the senior antiterrorism officer at Scotland Yard, said in a speech in April. “We are seeing networks within networks, connections within connections, and links between individuals that cross local, national and international lines.”

Mosque raid boosts Musharraf image

Terrorism: This is what happens when you appease groups like this, a lesson for that Aussie bimbo Louise Barry if she had the smarts for it.

Demanding strict enforcement of Sharia (Islamic law), Red Mosque clerics had let loose moral squads on the capital to "prevent vices and promote virtue" - a concept first institutionalised by the Taleban in Afghanistan.

These moral squads, consisting of armed male and female students, were going around the city threatening music shop owners, and kidnapping women over allegations of operating brothels.

But every time they took the law into their own hands, the government had opted for negotiations, arguing that any use of force was likely to lead to bloodshed.

Emboldened by the government's perceived pussy-footing, Red Mosque clerics kept raising their public profile until they became a major embarrassment for the government.

However, President Musharraf kept advocating restraint on the basis of intelligence reports which warned of the presence of a large number of suicide bombers inside the mosque and its affiliated seminary.

Initially, many agreed with the president's reasoning, but the argument started to lose weight as the Red Mosque clerics became bolder.

"The turning point clearly was the abduction of the Chinese massage parlour girls," says a senior diplomat in Islamabad.

"We know that the Chinese sent a very strong message that they could take losses in Balochistan or the tribal belt but were not prepared to see their citizens abducted and tortured bang in the heart of the capital."

Meanwhile, President Musharraf's opponents were having a field day. The Red Mosque provided great support for their allegation against the president that he wasn't sincere in battling extremism in Pakistan.

The result so far of him taking it to the radicals?

The deputy leader of a rebel mosque in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, has said he and hundreds of his militant followers are ready to surrender.

Ghazi Abdul Rashid said they would lay down their arms if the security forces ceased firing and did not arrest them.

Vermont nutrooters try to save socialism in China

Culture: Only in America you would have idiots like these who have a romantic view of Marx going to China to save the Chinese from abandoning Marxism/Communism naturally due to the progress.

Fortunately, just as China's Marxists begin to deal with their terminal despair at the decline of Mao's Good Old Cause, a couple of "veteran Vermont activists" are riding to the rescue. Ellen David-Friedman and Stuart Friedman--she's a self-described Marxist, an organizer for the Vermont teachers' union, and vice-chair of the Progressive Party, he's a clinical social worker at Central Vermont Hospital--are leaving their jobs in the People's Republic of Vermont to teach the Chinese about the horrors of capitalism.

Communist Party apparatchiks and overseers at Guangzhou University have never attempted to censor her or Stuart's teaching, David-Friedman tells the Vermont weekly Seven Days. "We can say anything we want to in the classroom," she notes - perhaps because these radicals are in fact teaching the official ideology, and it's so hard to find people who want to do that these days!
Communism is always such a disappointment in practice. You'd think by now even romantic communists would have given up on it.

But no--neither the activists nor the Seven Days reporter is ready for that:

China's communist revolution has gone off the rails, David-Friedman adds. The party "has divorced itself, tragically, from allowing itself to be led by the needs of workers," she adds. But maybe, in some small measure, these Vermont Progressives can help put the world's largest country back on the track toward socialism.

The LA Times concludes,

Talking over tea at the Education Ministry's modern offices in central Beijing, education official Zhou laughed a bit about today's students.
"They don't believe in God or communism," he said. "They're practical. They only worship the money."

That sounds a lot like the French philosopher Jean-Francois Revel's 1971 book Without Marx or Jesus: The New American Revolution Has Begun. Has the liberal-capitalist revolution begun in China?

Louise Barry is a Islamic terrorist useful idiot.

Terrorism: Reminded of this quote by ex-terrorist Hassan Butt.

When I was still a member of what is probably best termed the British Jihadi Network, a series of semi-autonomous British Muslim terrorist groups linked by a single ideology, I remember how we used to laugh in celebration whenever people on TV proclaimed that the sole cause for Islamic acts of terror like 9/11, the Madrid bombings and 7/7 was Western foreign policy.

By blaming the government for our actions, those who pushed the 'Blair's bombs' line did our propaganda work for us. More important, they also helped to draw away any critical examination from the real engine of our violence: Islamic theology.

Louise being of leftist mind and very little else plays her absolute moral authority card in a new commercial that even for leftist surrender propaganda is lacking.

AN AUSTRALIAN woman badly injured in the 2005 London bombings has made a television commercial quizzing John Howard about whether the attacks, as well as those last weekend in Britain, were linked to Iraq.

Louise Barry, who spent three months in traction with a broken neck, shrapnel wounds and burns, conceived and wrote the ad, which was paid for by the left-leaning group GetUp!

It will screen nationally from tomorrow, the second anniversary of the train and bus bombings that killed 52 commuters.

In the advertisement, Ms Barry tells Mr Howard, "You got us into this mess" and "it's your responsibility to get us out".

"The situation clearly is not getting any better," she says. "I don't want what happened to me to happen to any other Australians, or anyone else for that matter."

Ms Barry embarrassed Mr Howard when he visited her at University College Hospital, London, days after the July 7 attacks by asking whether he thought the bombings were linked to Iraq. Mr Howard said: "I don't. But, you know, different people have different views. I don't. I mean, they had a go at us and they had a go at other people before Iraq started."

But in the commercial, Ms Barry, now back in Australia, says her question remains pertinent. "These recent attacks in the UK brought back some really painful memories," she says.

"Wasn't going to war in Iraq supposed to make us safer, not put us in more danger?

"I don't have all the answers, and I'm not an expert, but I do know something about the real cost of terrorism."

Lady, you had a really unlucky break of getting away from one attack and into another but to act like a self-centered moron puts everyone else in danger.The real cost of terrorism goes beyond injuries and your personal interest to appease Islamic terrorists.

If you are that dumb to think if Australia pulls out of Iraq, everyone will be safe as the terrorists melt away, I question your intelligence and lack of common sense.

Why did they bomb Bali? That wasn't because of Iraq, how about Spain who got attacked? They elected a wimp who got played by one terrorist group and is still under severe threat from Islamic terrorists because of their grievance dating back to 1492.

The fatwa condemning bin Laden has particular resonance for Spain because after the attacks a group allied to al-Qa'eda, the Brigade of Abu Hafs al-Masri, stated that the attacks on Spain were revenge for the loss of the Spanish Muslim kingdom of al-Andalus in 1492.

The statement said: "This is part of settling old accounts with Spain, the crusader and America's ally in its war against Islam."

This is a movement that thrives on the gullibility of people like you and most of the left who have aligned themselves indirectly with the Islamists.

Your use of the absolute moral authority card ends when it puts me and people around me in danger. That is what you and your enablers are doing right now. Islamists cannot help but be pleased by your work.


Muslim "Rage Boy" speaks with AFP!

Culture: AFP with the exclusive interview.

He has become the face of Muslim fury: an angry young man whose bushy beard and fiery-eyed scowl take center stage at nearly every pro-Islamic demonstration in Indian Kashmir.

Shakeel Bhat, 31, has been displaying his teeth and shaking his fist over anything from Salman Rushdie's knighthood to Danish cartoons, becoming a photographers' favorite and earning himself the nickname "Rage Boy" in online columns and blogs.

One American columnist has dismissed him as a "professional Muslim protestor," while other bloggers have also held him up for ridicule as a person who appears to be very easily enraged about anything.

But Bhat, the man behind the angry face, said he could take any kind of criticism in his stride.

"Whatever I do, I do for Allah and the Prophet Mohammed," said Bhat, who admits to having been an armed militant between 1991 and 1994 with a pro-Pakistan rebel group.

"I cannot resist injustice. I protest for all the oppressed Muslims in Palestine, Iraq, and Afghanistan," he said.

Not to happy about the merchandising.

Apart from drawing ridicule from bloggers, Bhat has even inspired one American neoconservative website to push "Rage Boy" merchandise -- including T-shirts, beer mugs, mouse pads.

"I don't believe this! I have no knowledge about all this. Why do they do it?" demanded Bhat, who says he has no idea how to use a computer and the Internet.

Bhat also shrugged off his rather unflattering "Rage Boy" nickname.

"I don't need any titles. I am a simple Muslim. Yes, I get enraged if someone, somewhere makes derogatory remarks about our religion or Prophet," he said.

"The Koran is my driving force. I will come out on streets as long as Muslims are victims of oppression, even if it leads to my death."

45 Muslim doctors planned US terror raids

Terrorism: Via the Telegraph. Actually two versions of this story, the latest version is below with the change to the bolded part which said before;

One message, thought to have been sent on February 12 2005, read: 'We are 45 doctors and we are determined to undertake jihad and take the battle inside America.

This is the latest version.

A group of 45 Muslim doctors threatened to use car bombs and rocket grenades in terrorist attacks in the United States during discussions on an extremist internet chat site.

Police found details of the discussions on a site run by one of a three-strong "cyber-terrorist" gang.

They were discovered at the home of Younis Tsouli, 23, Woolwich Crown Court in south-east London heard.

One message read: "We are 45 doctors and we are determined to undertake jihad and take the battle inside America.

"The first target which will be penetrated by nine brothers is the naval base which gives shelter to the ship Kennedy." This is thought to have been a reference to the USS John F Kennedy, which is often at Mayport Naval Base in Jacksonville, Florida.

The message discussed targets at the base, adding: "These are clubs for naked women which are opposite the First and Third units."

It also referred to using six Chevrolet GT vehicles and three fishing boats and blowing up petrol tanks with rocket propelled grenades.

Investigators have found no link between the Tsouli chat room and the group of doctors and medics currently in custody over attempted car bomb attacks in London and Glasgow.

However, sources said it was "definitely spooky" that the use of doctors for terrorist purposes was being discussed in jihadi terrorist circles up to three years ago.

Part of the inquiry into the London and Glasgow incidents will focus on whether al-Qa'eda has recruited doctors or other medical professionals because they are less likely to attract suspicion and can move easily around the western world.

It looks like everyone has to pay attention to any fast track programs that allow in certain professions.

Sarkozy in trouble with French intellectuals.

France: It seems that jogging is a right wing activity deserving of scorn and this is why we realize French intellectuals are complete idiots.

President Sarkozy has fallen foul of intellectuals and critics who see his passion for jogging as un-French, right-wing and even a ploy to brainwash his citizens.

Attacks on Mr Sarkozy’s pastime, which he has made a symbol of his presidency, began on the internet as soon as he bounded up the steps of the Elysée Palace in shorts when he took office in May. That moment has become the icon of his hyperenergetic administration. The grumbling has now moved to television and the press.

“Is jogging right wing?” wondered Libération, the left-wing newspaper. Alain Finkelkraut, a celebrated philosopher, begged Mr Sarkozy on France 2, the main state television channel, to abandon his “undignified” pursuit. He should take up walking, like Socrates, Arthur Rimbaud, the poet, and other great men, said Mr Finkelkraut.

“Western civilisation, in its best sense, was born with the promenade. Walking is a sensitive, spiritual act. Jogging is management of the body. The jogger says I am in control. It has nothing to do with meditation.”

Mr Sarkozy’s habit infuriates his critics – and some supporters – because he flaunts it so hard. Le running du Président, often clad in his favourite NYPD T-shirt, has become a ritual, like King Louis XIV’s rides at Versailles. He has practised it at summits in Brussels and Germany and he is looking forward to a bonding jog with José Socrates, the Prime Minister of Portugal, which took over the European Union presidency this week.

It is also a sinster media plot and a shout out to facists.

Le jogging, originally known as le footing and now more fashionably as le running, caught on in France, as elsewhere, in the 1980s and eight million claim to indulge. But Mr Sarkozy has rekindled a French suspicion that the habit is for self-centred individualists such as the Americans who popularised it. “Jogging is of course about performance and individualism, values that are traditionally ascribed to the Right,” Odile Baudrier, editor of V02 magazine, a sports publication, told Libération. Patrick Mignon, a sports sociologist, noted that French intellectuals had always held sport in contempt, while totalitarian regimes cultivated physical fitness.

Beyond the self-promotion, some commentators see something sinister in the media fascination with le jogging de Supersarko. The “hypnotic” daily images of presidential running are not innocent, said Daniel Schneidermann, a media critic. Mr Sarkozy uses the video images of his jogging as “a major weapon of media manipulation”, said Mr Schneidermann.

So intellectuals are just mealy mouth softy wimps who fear jogging because it might turn them right wing as it shows the individual is in control of himself and lacks the need of being helped by others. A determined show of success that says YES! I AM A WINNER!

Okay then, if you put it that way.

France's welfare and health deficit grows 50%

France: Michael Moore said nothing about running up bills regarding France's welfare system.

PARIS, July 4, 2007 (AFP) - The deficit in France's national health and welfare system is forecast to hit 12 billion euros (16.3 billion dollars) this year, about 50 percent more than the previous estimate, an oversight body warned Wednesday.
"The general administration deficit will expand again in 2007 to reach 12 billion euros and thus return to its heights of 2004 and 2005," the Social Security accounting commission said in a report.

A draft law presented by former health minister Xavier Bertrand in September had assumed the deficit would amount to roughly eight billion euros.

The general administration budget of the French Social Security system covers health care, workplace accidents, retirement and financial support for families.

On Tuesday, French Prime Minister Francois Fillon confirmed that the new government appointed by President Nicolas Sarkozy had pushed back deadlines for balancing the federal budget and cutting national debt by two years to 2012.

France is now facing pressure from European Union partners to respect strict fiscal rules that underpin the single European currency, and Sarkozy is to attend a meeting of eurozone finance ministers in Brussels next week along with Economy Minister Christine Lagarde.

The French president has said repeatedly that it was important to "reduce spending whenever necessary," but also maintains that European leaders and the European Central Bank should do more to "create conditions for growth."

Several measures announced since his election last month are designed to promote home ownership and give French consumers a boost but entail greater government spending.

You can dress it up all you want but one way or the other, you have to pay for the healthcare/welfare system.

New reports of gay bashing in Amsterdam.

EU: A followup on this post. Attacks are up this year over last.

AMSTERDAM – The Amsterdam police have received four new reports of violence against homosexuals after calling on victims and witnesses to come forward.

The police had called for anyone with information to come forward after six men were arrested last week for beating up two gay men on the Reguliersdwarsstraat in Amsterdam, an area where many gay bars are located.

The group that was arrested was most likely responsible for at least one of the four new reports. The Amsterdam police have already received 10 reports of violence against homosexuals this year, compared to 15 for the whole of 2006.

John Edwards is a jerk, forget the $1250 haircut.

Politics: We have already figured out Edwards is all prim and pomp. But this part where he puts the guy down and claims he has no idea how much the haircuts cost is low class.

At first, the haircuts were free. But because Torrenueva often had to fly somewhere on the campaign trail to meet his client, he began charging $300 to $500 for each cut, plus the cost of airfare and hotels when he had to travel outside California.

Torrenueva said one haircut during the 2004 presidential race cost $1,250 because he traveled to Atlanta and lost two days of work.

"He has nice hair," the stylist said of Edwards in an interview. "I try to make the man handsome, strong, more mature and these are the things, as an expert, that's what we do."

It is some kind of commentary on the state of American politics that as Edwards has campaigned for president, vice president and now president again, his hair seems to have attracted as much attention as, say, his position on health care.

But when his campaign reported in April that it had paid for two of his haircuts at $400 each, the political damage was immediate. With each punch line on late night TV his image as a self-styled populist making poverty his signature issue was further eroded.

Edwards said that he was embarrassed by the cost and that he "didn't know it would be that expensive," suggesting the haircuts were some kind of aberration given by "that guy" his staff had arranged. His wife, Elizabeth, made lots of jokes at her husband's expense and the campaign wished the whole issue would go away.

But Torrenueva's account of his long relationship with Edwards -- the first he's given -- probably guarantees that won't happen quite yet. And if $400 seemed a lot for a haircut, how about one for three times that?

In the days after the $400 haircut first caused a stir, Torrenueva did not give many details about his client to reporters who called or came by his Beverly Hills salon. But Torrenueva says he was hurt by Edwards's response to all the flap.

"I'm disappointed and I do feel bad. If I know someone, I'm not going to say I don't know them," he said. "When he called me 'that guy,' that hit my ears. It hurt." He paused and then added, "I still like him. . . . I don't want to hurt him."

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

National Press Club bows down to Hugo Chavez?

Media: A controversy begins.

Al Gore's Live Earth concerts seem to be in trouble.

Environ: Via Tim Blair.

Less than three weeks after Al Gore, the environmental campaigner and former vice president, visited Istanbul to announce its participation in the round-the-world Live Earth concerts on July 7, organizers announced yesterday that the city had been dropped from the roster of nine sites because of a lack of interest ...
South Africa:
Organizers seeking to stimulate lagging ticket sales moved the Live Earth concert to the 18,000-seat Coca-Cola Dome in Johannesburg ...

Only half of the tickets have been sold. Hamburg tourist officials are giving away the tickets in promotional packages.

Brazilian authorities have obtained a court injunction suspending the Rio show of the Live Earth global series of concerts set for Saturday on concerns about security in the crime-hit city.

Would John Lennon have done Live Earth? Not likely.

From John Lennon's Playboy interview:
PLAYBOY: Just to finish your favorite subject, what about the suggestion that the four of you put aside your personal feelings and regroup to give a mammoth concert for charity, some sort of giant benefit?

LENNON: I don’t want to have anything to do with benefits. I have been benefited to death.


LENNON: Because they’re always rip-offs. I haven’t performed for personal gain since 1966, when the Beatles last performed. Every concert since then, Yoko and I did for specific charities, except for a Toronto thing that was a rock-’n'-roll revival. Every one of them was a mess or a rip-off. So now we give money to who we want. You’ve heard of tithing?

Villaraigosa and his Telemundo mistress.

*updates below*
Politics: She even announced the mayor and his wife separation on the air without a hint of irony it seems, that is cold.

At 4 p.m. on June 8, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa issued a terse statement announcing that he and his wife, Corina, were separating after 20 years of marriage.

Two hours later, Telemundo television anchor Mirthala Salinas delivered the story to her Spanish-language viewers on the Friday evening news.

"The rumors were true," she declared of the split after an introduction that described the story as a "political scandal" that had left "many people with their mouth open."

What Salinas, 35, did not say in the newscast was that she was the other woman. She and Villaraigosa, 54, had been in a relationship even though she had previously been the political reporter assigned to cover local politics and the mayor.

There has to be some management fallout over this, you can't have your anchor who seems to like going around with high level politicians delivering the news of the divorce. Villaraigosa not exactly off the hook considering his past.

Villaraigosa's admission cast a fresh shadow over his own personal conduct: He has two adult daughters born out of wedlock and his wife filed for divorce in 1994 over a separate affair for which he later publicly apologized. They eventually reconciled.

This will be fun to follow as Mickey Kaus has a roundup of the news so far.

Update# Mirthala Salinas has been put on leave by Telemundo.

Spanish-language broadcaster Telemundo placed newscaster Mirthala Salinas on leave today while it conducts an internal investigation into whether she breached journalistic ethics by having a relationship with someone she covered: Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

"As we have stated, we are committed to journalistic excellence," said Manuel Abud, general manager of KVEA Channel 52. "Given the seriousness of the allegations that have been made, we have decided to conduct an internal review of the decisions and events that led us to where we are today. In the meantime, Salinas has been placed on a leave of absence from her duties pending this review.

"We will conduct this investigation with the utmost respect to personal privacy and journalistic standards."

Eric Alterman praises SC decision on race based schools.

Edumacation: Now I feel dirty being on the same page as Alterman.

The United States Supreme Court has finally done away with affirmative action by race. This liberal is glad of it. Here's why:

1. It doesn't work very well. In addition to the myriad personal, psychological and social complications that inevitably arise when people are believed to have been given "special treatment" owing to their race, affirmative action affects only a small and usually privileged sliver of the minority population.

For instance, one 2004 study discovered that while affirmative action tripled the representation of black and Latino students at the nation's most selective 146 colleges and universities, it did nothing for low income and working class students. This was confirmed in another study of elite schools by ex-Princeton president William Bowen.

The net result is that poor people - large numbers of whom, unhappily, are minorities - are shut out of America's elite colleges. And this is to say nothing of kids from the black and Hispanic ghetto who grow up with little education and virtually no (legitimately) marketable skills and aren't candidates for college in the first place.

2. Americans don't want it. Since 1996, voters in about a quarter of the US have chosen to ban all racial preferences for minorities and women in public universities and state government. At the same time, no state has passed preferences.

3. Affirmative action by class is fairer and more effective. As the liberal education expert Richard D Kahlenberg explains, 40 years of studies demonstrate that the socioeconomic status of the school a child attends is, after family economic status, the single most significant factor in determining future success in school.

As he puts it: "Blacks don't do better sitting next to whites; poor kids do better in middle class environments." The value of a middle class school environment, in other words, rather than the respective races of the children involved, is the primary reason why racial desegregation often improves black grade scores and the like.

Dumb Swedish singer makes a threat about bombs

Crime: If you are dumb enough to make stupid jokes like this, it should be legal to just taser the idiot until the battery dies.

Swedish pop star Dilbahar "Dilba" Demirbag has been turned away from a US Airways flight to Philadelphia after joking that she planned to "bomb some planes".

Expressen reports that Dilba, 35, was approached on Monday by an airline representative as she stood in line at the check-in desk at Arlanda airport in Stockholm.

She was then asked a set of routine questions about the duration of her stay and her accommodation plans.

But the artist soon lost her patience when she felt that her Middle Eastern appearance led to her being detained for longer than any other passengers.

"I replied that I had some planes to bomb on the way home. He didn't find that a bit amusing," she told the newspaper.

Airport Security guards were quickly called over and Dilba was taken away for questioning.

"I was pulled out of the queue and treated like a terrorist," she told Expressen.

The singer added that she was considering reporting US Airways for discrimination.

"I felt insulted, that's why I made the joke. I want to apologize to anybody who took offence," she told Expressen.

Taser and batons upside the head. No sympathy for stupidity.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Don't tell the British all their sovereignty belongs to EU.

EU: Ballsy yet arrogantly stupid thing to say in a paper.

The new European Union treaty will mean "transfers of sovereignty" from Britain and Gordon Brown is right to hide the fact from the public, an EU leader admitted yesterday.

Jean-Claude Juncker, Luxembourg's premier and leader of the bloc of 13 single currency members, spoke out as the Prime Minister faced rising calls for a referendum on the treaty drawn up following the rejection of the old EU constitution by French and Dutch voters in 2005.

Mr Juncker said he supported public debate on the treaty - except in Britain.

"I am astonished at those who are afraid of the people: one can always explain that what is in the interest of Europe is in the interests of our countries," he told Belgian newspaper Le Soir.

"Britain is different. Of course there will be transfers of sovereignty. But would I be intelligent to draw the attention of public opinion to this fact?"

Mr Juncker, a supporter of a United States of Europe, described the June 23 deal signed by Tony Blair as an "objective success" for friends of the EU constitution.

"There is a single legal personality for the EU, the primacy of European law, a new architecture for foreign and security policy, there is an enormous extension in the fields of the EU's powers, there is Charter of Fundamental Rights," he said, listing elements of the old constitution in the proposed treaty.

French president role in Rwanda genocide.

Africa: François Mitterrand was more worried about the Anglo-Saxons than the Hutu killing off the Tutsis.

The former French president François Mitterrand supported the perpetrators of the 1994 Rwandan genocide despite clear warnings that mass killings of the Tutsi population were being orchestrated, according to declassified French documents.

The publication of the documents in today's Le Monde for the first time confirms long-held suspicions against France. The previously secret diplomatic telegrams and government memos also suggest the late French president was obsessed with the danger of "Anglo-Saxon" influence gripping Rwanda. In three months from April 1994, at least a million Rwandans - mainly Tutsis - were systematically slaughtered in killings engineered by the Hutu regime to exterminate its ethnic rivals and repel the Uganda-trained Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF).

The documents, obtained by lawyers for six Tutsi survivors who are bringing a case against France for "complicity with genocide'' at the Paris Army Tribunal, suggest the late President Mitterrand's support for the Hutus was informed by an obsession with maintaining a French foothold in the region. One of the lawyers, Antoine Compte, said France was aware of the potential danger of its support for the pre-genocide Rwandan government.

"Massacres on an ethnic basis were going on and we have evidence that France knew this from at least January 1993. The French military executed the orders of French politicians. The motivation was an obsession with the idea of an Anglo-Saxon plot to oust France from the region."

Gordon Brown: Don't mention the Islam

Terrorism: I will say it again and again, trying to hide and play down obvious points to look nice will come back to bite you in the ass. Trying to do that before just created more hostility after each attack or threat because it looked like the government is taking sides.

The low-key Smith also stands in contrast to her pugnacious predecessor, John Reid, whose tough talk on terrorism was sometimes criticized for inflaming ethnic and religious tensions. In a speech to lawmakers Monday, Smith called terrorists "criminals whose victims come from all walks of life, communities and religious backgrounds." Brown has spoken of "al-Qaida" attackers but not of "Islamic" or "Muslim" terrorists.

Instead of announcing new anti-terror legislation—as Blair and Reid did after the July 7 bombings—Brown has said he wants to work with opposition politicians to build a consensus on what steps to take.

"This is not the time for rushing into new legislation," said Brown's official spokesman, Michael Ellam.

There is evidence the public approves of Brown's cautious approach.

"I'm impressed with the fact that (Brown) and Jacqui Smith speak pretty calmly," said Londoner James Freeman, 32. "They're focusing on terrorists as criminals, rather than people of a religious persuasion. I think (Brown) is going to continue to stand firm."

Meantime it looks like the discredited MCB has learned at least a PR lesson.

A Muslim leader has declared that it is the "Islamic duty" of the faithful to fight to eliminate extremism as he made the strongest condemnation yet of the attempted car bombings in London and Glasgow.

Muhammad Abdul Bari, the secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, issued a direct challenge to the fundamentalists.

"Those who seek to deliberately kill or main innocent people are the enemies of all of us," he said.

Mr Bari said: "It is our Islamic duty not only to utterly and totally condemn such evil actions, but to provide all the necessary support to prevent such atrocities from taking place."

Muslim leaders from across Britain will hold talks this weekend to discuss ways to "undermine and defeat the terrorists who seek to attack us". The meeting of imams and community activists will discuss how they can work better with police and other partners to combat the terror threat facing Britain.

In a direct message to extremists, Mr Bari said: "There is no cause whatsoever that could possibly justify such barbarity. Those who engage in such murderous actions and those that provide support for them are the enemies of all, Muslims and non-Muslims, and they stand against our shared values in the UK.

"The police and security services... deserve the fullest support and co-operation from each and every sector of our society, including all Muslims."

Hamas freed Alan Johnston. Good.

Media: Let us see how the BBC will spin Hamas as one of the good guys in the coming days for all their help in getting Johnston free.

On cue, a Guardian commentator sees the political windfall and praise for Hamas.

Another Guardian Hamas apologist who seem to dismiss the fact Hamas is a terrorist organization. Commentators aren't buying it.

Comment No. 678813
July 4 15:12USA

Very funny article. Monty Python material.
Think about the story: you have multiple criminal gangs in a lawless land. Two major ones. One of them grabs the power by murdering members of the second criminal gang. Obviously it is being shunned by the entire civilized world. In order to get some brownie points with Western governments, the criminal gang in power releases, with much delay and excessive fanfare, a hostage held by a third, smaller criminal gang. Again, it is a matter of turf, not of justice or of rejecting lawlessness as "governing" method.


Comment No. 678783
July 4 15:00GBR

hahaha - you're a joke. Are you talking about the same Hamas organisation that only 3 weeks ago were throwing their fellow muslim brothers off 10 storey buildings, or going into hospitals tying men and kids up and shooting them in the back. All the while screaming Allah Acbbbarrrr...[Offensive? Unsuitable? Report this comment.]

Dog crap more of a concern than Global Warming.

Enviro: Blame the global warmers for hyperbole and we are all DOOOOOOOOMED talk that keeps most of the public not as alarmed.

The public believes the effects of global warming on the climate are not as bad as politicians and scientists claim, a poll has suggested.

The Ipsos Mori poll of 2,032 adults - interviewed between 14 and 20 June - found 56% believed scientists were still questioning climate change.

There was a feeling the problem was exaggerated to make money, it found.

The Royal Society said most climate scientists believed humans were having an "unprecedented" effect on climate.

The survey suggested that terrorism, graffiti, crime and dog mess were all of more concern than climate change.

Ipsos Mori's head of environmental research, Phil Downing, said the research showed there was "still a lot to do" in encouraging "low-carbon lifestyles".

"We are alive to climate change and very few people actually reject out of hand the idea the climate is changing or that humans have had at least some part to play in this," he added.

"However, a significant number have many doubts about exactly how serious it really is and believe it has been over hyped."

Everywhere you turn someone is hyping a product or governement wanting to tax you to fight global warming. What do you expect people to think?

Florida Power and Light wants a carbon tax...fee to fight global warming.

Mayor Bloomberg wants to tax driving in part to fight global warming.

Airfares taxed to fight global warming.

Home Depot and their "green" products.

Everywhere you look are idiot Hollywood stars and know-nothings running around screaming about global warming then you are stunned people are not licking your boots and calling you a savior?

Less hype, less volume and more rational logical demands instead of everyone cut their lifestyles down to a tent and a candle.

Oliver Stone wanted to do an Ahmadinejad doc?

Entertainment: He had Hugo Chavez right there, he didn't have to go thru all the trouble of finding an enemy of America.

Looks like Oliver Stone won't get his chance to profile Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad after all.
Ahmadinejad has rejected Stone's offer to make a documentary about him, calling the helmer part of the "Great Satan" cultural establishment.

"It is right that this person is considered part of the opposition in the U.S., but opposition in the U.S. is a part of the Great Satan," Mehdi Kalhor, media adviser to the president told the Fars news agency.

The term "the Great Satan" dates back to the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, who first labeled the U.S. thusly after the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

Stone's publicist said Monday that the helmer had not received any official word of Ahmadinejad's rejection of the docu proposal, but in a statement Stone said, "I have been called a lot of things, but never a great Satan. I wish the Iranian people well and only hope their experience with an inept, rigid ideologue president goes better than ours."

Kalhor said the Iranian president mulled Stone's proposal for more than a year

Monday, July 2, 2007

Muslim prayer time demanded in San Diego school.

Religion: This time the Christians and Catholics are seizing this opportunity to demand their rights. ACLU..where are you?

Carver Elementary in Oak Park added Arabic to its curriculum in September when it suddenly absorbed more than 100 students from a defunct charter school that had served mostly Somali Muslims.

After subbing at Carver, the teacher claimed that religious indoctrination was taking place and said that a school aide had led Muslim students in prayer.

An investigation by the San Diego Unified School District failed to substantiate the allegations. But critics continue to assail Carver for providing a 15-minute break in the classroom each afternoon to accommodate Muslim students who wish to pray. (Those who don't pray can read or write during that non-instructional time.)

Some say the arrangement at Carver constitutes special treatment for a specific religion that is not extended to other faiths. Others believe it crosses the line into endorsement of religion.

Supporters of Carver say such an accommodation is legal, if not mandatory, under the law. They note the district and others have been sued for not accommodating religious needs on the same level as non-religious needs, such as a medical appointment.

Islam requires its adherents to pray at prescribed times, one of which falls during the school day.

This is where it gets fun.

The issue has drawn the attention of national groups concerned about civil rights and religious liberty. The Council on American-Islamic Relations, Anti-Defamation League, American Civil Liberties Union and the Pacific Justice Institute are some of the groups monitoring developments in California's second-largest school district.

Among the critics is Richard Thompson, president and chief counsel with the nonprofit, Michigan-based Thomas More Law Center devoted to “defending the religious freedom of Christians.”

He said he's “against double standards being used,” such as when there is a specific period for Muslim students to pray and not a similar arrangement for Christians.

Carver's supporters noted that Christianity and other religions, unlike Islam, do not require their followers to pray at specific times that fall within school hours, when children by law must be in school. Amid the controversy, the district is studying alternatives to the break to accommodate student prayer.

Capitalizing on what it considers a precedent-setting opportunity created by the Carver situation, the Sacramento-based Pacific Justice Institute has offered to help craft a districtwide “Daily Prayer Time Policy.”

In a letter, the religious-rights organization urged the district to broaden its accommodations to Christians and Jews by setting aside separate classrooms for daily prayer and to permit rabbis, priests and other religious figures to lead children in worship on campuses.

A lawyer representing the district said those ideas would violate the Constitution's prohibition against government establishment of religion.

But the supporters are being slick falling back on requirement and other groups are joining in to say you have to accomdate us as well. The school district surprisingly is not that quite in a bind over this due to D.O.E guidelines.

“These things are surfacing more and more in many places where large communities of Muslims are coming in and trying to say this is our right,” said Antoine Mefleh, a non-Muslim who is an Arabic language instructor with the Minneapolis public schools.

His school allows Muslim students to organize an hour of prayer on Fridays – Muslims typically have Friday congregational prayers – and make up class work they miss as a result. During the rest of the week, students pray during lunch or recess.

The San Diego chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations supports the Carver program.

“Our country is transforming demographically, religiously,” said Edgar Hopida, the chapter's public relations director. “Our country has to now accommodate things that are not traditionally accounted for before.”

Brent North, a lawyer retained by the district to address concerns related to the Carver program, said the district learned from the University City High case to be “careful about restricting students' right to their own private religious expression, including when it's on campus.”

The district cites Department of Education guidelines on prayer:

“Where school officials have a practice of excusing students from class on the basis of parents' requests for accommodation of non-religious needs, religiously motivated requests for excusal may not be accorded less favorable treatment.”

The midday prayer for Muslims here generally falls between 1 and 2 p.m., North said, and that is before the school day ends.

“What is unique about this request is the specificity of the religious requirement that a prayer be offered at a certain time on the clock,” he said.

North went on to say, “The district's legal obligation in response to a request that a prayer must be performed at a particular time is to treat that request the same as it would treat a student's request to receive an insulin shot at a particular time.”

If they allow only Muslim students to pray, all hell(pun) is going to break loose if every other religion is not allowed the same accomdations. BTW, you can double up on prayers and as a Muslim living in a Non-Muslim land, you have to follow the rules and laws of said country. So this interpretation by Somali Muslims is hardline but not set in stone.

Oh I am loving this from the sense of secularists and liberals are going to have to make some sort of stand or acquiesce in allowing it to happen which will allow prayer in school.

I will get the popcorn.

Newsbusters on Tavis Smiley/Michael Moore "interview"

Media: Of course it was a softball fest by Smiley, he gave a lovefest to Hugo Chavez for crying out loud. Tavis is running around screaming about universal health care damn the facts.

"When the "facts" are 100% skewed in favor of one side, its not a documentary, it's propaganda.

Yet of this was deemed important enough by Mr. Smiley, as he didn't ask a single question that could have called into the validity of Moore's film. I've seen Letterman ask tougher questions of Pauly Shore. This wasn't an interview, it was a way for Michael Moore to air his indignation and for Tarvis Smiley to gush over Moore's new movie. "

Far leftists get together and suck up forever is what it comes down too. Nice to know my tax dollars are being used to push this nonsense on PBS. Even the BBC is not this blatant.

Gays not safe in Amsterdam anymore.

EU: Hell, tell me Amsterdam hasn't gone downhill this fast. Love that city.

AMSTERDAM – A group of six men assaulted two gay men on the Reguliersdwarsstraat in Amsterdam city centre last Thursday night.

The victims are aged 37 and 45 and were most likely attacked because of their sexual orientation, Amsterdam police said on Monday. The six men were arrested after the attack for public violence.

The 37-year-old and a friend had visited a nightclub in the centre of Amsterdam. They were attacked by a group of men as they were crossing the Rembrandtplein via the Regulierdwarsstraat towards the Vijzelstraat.

The men shouted insulting statements about homosexuals, threatened the two and spit in the face of one of them. As the victims approached the Vijzelstraat both were punched in the face. A witness says the group also threatened the two gay men, chanting "I'm going to kill you, I'm going to kill you."

The group then headed towards the Herengracht. Witnesses had called police and the six were arrested. The suspects are all between the ages of 15 and 19. Four are of Moroccan descent, one is Surinamese and one is Turkish.

The police are looking for witnesses of the abuse. The group of young men is also suspected of involvement in other similar incidents. The police are asking that any victims come forward so that this kind of violence can be addressed.

This is the part where you hear about marches and protests to stop the violence, you think they will start given the criminals.......naaaaah.

Winston Churchill wouldn't snort at Islamofascism....

Politics: Lynne Olson. Churchill would probably thunder he didn't go far enough if you look at this River of War quote.

Lynne Olson: The president no doubt has his own Churchill. "He was resolute," Bush has remarked. "He was tough. He knew what he believed." But Churchill would snort, I believe, at the administration's equation of "Islamofascism," an amorphous, ill-defined movement of killers forced to resort to terrorism by their lack of military might, to Nazi Germany, a global power that had already conquered several countries before Churchill took office in 1940.

Winston Churchill: "How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live.

A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property‹either as a child, a wife, or a concubine‹must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men. Individual Moslems may show splendid qualities.

Thousands become the brave and loyal soldiers of the Queen; all know how to die; but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith.

It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science‹the science against which it had vainly struggled‹the civilisation of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilisation of ancient Rome."

"Lynne Olson, a former White House correspondent for the Baltimore Sun, is the author or coauthor of four books of history."


Seattle a "progressively liberal" city....schools though.

Edumacation: An example of we will experiment on your kids, but our kids..not so much.

In the short term, while many school districts across the country may be forced to revise or abandon race-based assignment plans, Seattle — which suspended its policy five years ago amid legal challenges that led to the Supreme Court ruling — will feel strikingly little impact from the ruling it helped prompt.

But school officials say the Supreme Court decision, which left room for the use of race in limited circumstances, eventually will help them find new ways to steer schools like Ballard back toward more diversity, not less, a position that all but ensures that the debate over race and its distribution among schools here will be revived, not resolved by the ruling.

For a city that regards itself as progressively liberal and is not often viewed as having the painful racial legacy shared by so many other American cities, Seattle has a history of sharply segregated neighborhoods, struggling public schools and the flight of white families.

Through transfers, busing and complicated school-choice plans, the school district has been pursuing integration for four decades. Not everyone, however, has chosen to participate. The city, with one of the nation’s highest median household incomes, also has one of the highest rates of private school attendance in the country.

Danny Westneat a columnist for the Seattle Times is shocked to be cited in the court case by Clarence Thomas. Idealist bleeding heart who got smacked upside the head with reality. Of course being liberal and with the co-workers he has they have to make a crude joke about Thomas to feel good about themselves.

He then lists examples. Such as how the Seattle schools had said it was "cultural racism" to emphasize individualism or to define one form of English as standard. He derides the district for sending students to a "White Privilege Conference."

Then he concludes: "See generally Westneat, School District's Obsessed with Race, Seattle Times, Apr. 1, 2007, p. B1 (describing racial issues in Seattle schools)."

I have no idea how that came to the attention of this Supreme Court justice. A co-worker joked Thomas must have stumbled on it while surfing around for that stuff I wrote about horse sex.

Seriously, it made my stomach churn. It made me doubt. I've always believed the rigid Thomas is bunkered in an ideological fantasy world far, far from my own.

Yet there we are, philosophical bosom buddies. On page 84 of the year's biggest legal decision. How did we meet minds?

To recap: Thomas is referring to a column I wrote about how my family spent four years raising funds and volunteering at our local school — which is majority black — only to eventually transfer our kid. The reason: overcrowded classes and an administration we felt was resistant to whites integrating a black school.

The column detailed a number of racially charged comments made by school-district employees, then asked: "Does the Seattle School District even want whites and blacks to go to school together?"

Thomas used this to suggest Seattle school leaders are so consumed by leftist racial ideology that they can't be "entrusted with the power to make decisions on the basis of race."

I have to say I agree. I disagree when Thomas argues race is irrelevant, that integration is a fool's goal. He's wrong: It matters. It's also true Seattle has an admirable history of trying to make education equitable.

But in recent years the district has seemed more about pigeonholing and assigning blame than bringing people together. And it has lost sight of what's more important than race — its job is to educate any kid who walks in the door.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Another idiot columnist over school race base ruling.

Educamaction: Wendi C. Thomas cries over the Supreme Court sending black people back to pick cotton or something in this absurd column.

I've waded through as much of the 185-page ruling as I could without vomiting in disgust, and the headline, according to a majority of justices, is this: Racial diversity is important in schools, but you can't use race as a means to achieve racial diversity.


Clearly, the court's majority doesn't really believe racial diversity is a worthy ideal. Because if it were, the conservative-leaning court (historically, they of less federal intervention into states' rights) would allow local governments some leeway in determining how best to desegregate schools.

Chief Justice John Roberts, a recent Bush appointee, managed to contort the essence of the historic 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision in a manner that must have Thurgood Marshall spinning in his grave.

It is not the government's job to force racial diversity and its not a worthy ideal if it means forcing kids to go to crap schools just so the local school board can point to the percent of this many white kids in black schools and vice versa.

As Juan Williams pointed out Marshall wasn't about diversity in schools and more just getting similar funding for black schools who got the short end of the stick by government mandate.

"...Had Mr. Marshall, the lawyer, made a mistake by insisting on racial integration instead of improvement in the quality of schools for black children?

His response was that seating black children next to white children in school had never been the point. It had been necessary only because all-white school boards were generously financing schools for white children while leaving black students in overcrowded, decrepit buildings with hand-me-down books and underpaid teachers. He had wanted black children to have the right to attend white schools as a point of leverage over the biased spending patterns of the segregationists who ran schools — both in the 17 states where racially separate schools were required by law and in other states where they were a matter of culture.

If black children had the right to be in schools with white children, Justice Marshall reasoned, then school board officials would have no choice but to equalize spending to protect the interests of their white children."

Zimbabwe’s top cleric urges Britain to invade

Africa: From wanting the white racists back to rule to pleading for an invasion, Mugabe is doing great with Zimbabwe.

ZIMBABWE’S leading cleric has called on Britain to invade the country and topple President Robert Mugabe. Pius Ncube, the Archbishop of Bulawayo, warned that millions were facing death from famine, unable to survive amid inflation believed to have soared to 15,000%.

Mugabe, 83, had proved intransigent despite the “massive risk to life”, said Ncube, the head of Zimbabwe’s 1m Catholics. “I think it is justified for Britain to raid Zimbabwe and remove Mugabe,” he said. “We should do it ourselves but there’s too much fear. I’m ready to lead the people, guns blazing, but the people are not ready.”

Black officials holding down the white vote!

Politics: In a county in Mississippi.... eh?

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A federal judge has ruled that a majority black county in eastern Mississippi violated whites' voting rights in what prosecutors said was the first lawsuit to use the Voting Rights Act on behalf of whites.

U.S. District Judge Tom S. Lee ruled late Friday that Noxubee County Democratic Party leader Ike Brown and the county Democratic Executive Committee "manipulated the political process in ways specifically intended and designed to impair and impede participation of white voters and to dilute their votes."

The Justice Department accused Brown of trying to limit whites' participation in local elections in violation of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, written to protect racial minorities when Southern states strictly enforced segregation.

"Every American has the right to vote free from racial discrimination," said Wan J. Kim, assistant attorney general for the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division.

"The court's ruling is another victory in the department's vigorous efforts to protect the voting rights of all Americans," Kim said.

Noxubee County is a rural area along the Alabama line with a population of about 12,500, of whom 70% are black.

Brown did not immediately return calls Saturday from The Associated Press seeking comment.

The Justice Department alleged in the 2006 lawsuit that Noxubee County blacks tried to shut whites out of the voting process.

Brown had claimed the Justice Department was misconstruing as racial intimidation his attempts to keep Republicans from voting in Democratic primaries.

Unless it is a closed primary I would think it is illegal any sort of move to try and keep people from voting would be idiotic.

The judge said there was a pattern to Brown's efforts to keep all whites out of the county's Democratic Party, including holding party caucuses in private homes rather than public voting precincts and inviting only blacks to the meetings.

Yeah, that would cause people to do a double take. If you are going to cheat, at least be more subtle about it.

Latin American countries displeased with America

Immigration: For not granting 12 million illegals amnesty which if America turned around and pointed out there wouldn't be so many illegal here if they would get their own busines in order, there would be howls of protest.

MEXICO CITY, June 29 -- Latin America reacted with sharp disappointment Friday to the U.S. Senate's defeat of an immigration bill, a decision that Mexican President Felipe Calderón called "a grave error" and Salvadoran President Elías Antonio Saca said was "a pity."

Latin American governments have long hoped for a comprehensive reform package that would include guest-worker provisions and a route to legal status for the estimated 12 million undocumented migrants in the United States -- half of whom are Mexican. At the same time, the Calderón administration has tried lately to lower expectations, in the belief that immigration reform is unlikely until after a new U.S. president is elected in November 2008.