THINGS WHICH MUST BE DISSEMINATED

Pulse Media

30.11.05

Is this Britain?

Statesman


One day recently in south Belfast a Catholic priest told a room full of Protestants that they were "like the Nazis". At about the same time in north Belfast a group of loyalists picketing a service at a cemetery threatened Catholic mourners that they would "dig up your graves". Sectarianism, the force that fuelled more than three decades of bloodshed in Northern Ireland, hasn't vanished with the coming of peace.
Perhaps the history of Northern Ireland is such, that we must be patient. Still, it is amazing that in this day and age, in Britain, such a case of segregation exists.

Support for moderate parties has evaporated and David Trimble and John Hume, never a happy match but at least able to sit in a room together, have given way to Ian Paisley and Gerry Adams.
I don't expect non-Britons to understand, but this made me almost piss myself laughing! Ok, I'd had a few too many glasses of Chardonay...

I wonder how many staunch supporters of bombing the shit out of innocent Arabs a long long way away would agree with tax-payers' money being spent on segregation within these beautiful isles...

I expect tomorrow, when I wake up with a hangover, I will regret my naivety...

Just a bit of fun

What about lesbians?


Washington Post

One has to wonder how the Catholic church defines being homosexual when you're celibate...does it mean playing Madonna albums to the congregation? Or serving rosé wine as the 'blood of Christ' perhaps...?

But in Rome, the head of the Congregation for Catholic Education, Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, said that the problems of homosexual and heterosexual candidates are not equivalent. Although many people think homosexuality is a "normal condition of the human person," he told Vatican Radio, it "absolutely contradicts human anthropology" and violates "natural law."
Right. And presumably rising from the dead three days after being buried is anthropologically natural...?

28.11.05

One step forward, half a step backward

Mainichi

"I only expressed my personal feelings, and it has nothing to do with my official duty as justice minister. It would be regrettable if it had caused misunderstanding, and I'd like to correct my earlier remarks," Sugiura said in a statement released an hour after his controversial statement.

A man is on the verge of being hung. Act now!

If you oppose the death penalty or simply wish to save a man let your voice be heard.

NAP-NT

On Friday 21st October 2005, Singapore's President Sellapan Ramanathan rejected Nguyen's call for clemency. The Singapore Government has announced that the execution will take place on Friday, 2nd December 2005. Unless a last-minute reprieve is granted, Nguyen will become the first Australian since 1993 to be executed overseas. Act now!

27.11.05

25.11.05

The Problem of Freedom

Philosophy Matters


“It is always our responsiblity to acknowledge where something has gone wrong, but never our right to punish.”

In God We Trust

LA Times

A lawyer recruited 29 people, including some from a Bible study class, to stage more than 60 automobile crashes on Los Angeles freeways and collected millions of dollars in bogus insurance claims, authorities said Wednesday.

Such crash rings are not new to Southern California.
A family of three burned to death on the Long Beach Freeway in 1996 in an accident linked to a crash ring.

Bigga Uppa Fleet FM!


Listen here

Special shouts to Hooch@31 Flavours, Scary D@Dead Air and Gwaan Gal! And a very special one to Larb-iful Sasa(-:

Woodward on The Leak

Washington post

Woodward testified before Special Counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald last week but said the source would not release him from his pledge of confidentiality on the question of publicly discussing their off-the-record conversation.
Perhaps I am a tad naive, but since when do journalists (especially of Woodward's sature) need permission to disclose such vital information?

24.11.05

Hirsi Ali and Muhammed

Sappho

- You have said that you would like to make a muslim "Life of Brian".
"Yes, Muhammed is a much more colourful personality than Jesus. Such a film could be a learning instrument for muslims. There are some islamic films but they don't show the image of Muhammed and they are not really about him. They are more about how islam was established. I would really like to make a critical film about him. I could write a script very quickly."
Never mind about offending Muslims, as a Python fan, I am offended! I'd like to point out, that as I understand it, The Life of Brian was not a critique of Jesus, but rather of his followers up to this day.
That said, I would defend Hirsi Ali's freedom of speech to the death(no, not litterally!). What I would say, is that what needs to be fought is religious fundamentalism, not Islam.

If you refrain from making cartoons of Muhammed to accommodate Islamic intolerance, then you will go back to the time of Christian intolerance.
When would that be:at the time of Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ? Bush's 'crusade'?

22.11.05

The blog of a week

Brother Kenya's paradigm

Nightmerica is where we live now, citizens, five years on. It's a place from which, I'd like to think, we might some day awaken and find that it was nothing but a cautionary tale, but something tells me that's too much to hope for.

Permaculture ethics

Permaculture Reflections

All this leads us back to permaculture ethics, or, using Zizek’s approach, Permaculture’s guidelines for avoiding excess. The first tenet is to care for the Earth. Obviously, puerile fantasies of space colonization aside, we are all dependent on a healthy planet to sustain us. To endanger life on this planet is to endanger ourselves. This is clear enough. All life has an inherent value. Once this is recognised, thoughtless environmental destruction can be avoided. The Rio Declaration on Environment and Development is a step in the right direction: “In order to protect the environment, the precautionary approach shall be widely applied…”

The second tenet, contained within the first, is to care for people. People need access to clean air and clean water. To borrow from Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, [sensible, sustainable] housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.”

20.11.05

Terror compensation

BBC-File on 4

Tony Blair stepped in to speed up compensation for those injured in the London bombings - but other victims of violent crime have to wait years.
Speaking of Tony Blair's recent intervention to help the victims of the London bombings get their pay-outs quicker, Mr Reid said it would be an "injustice" for those out of the public eye to experience longer delays.
An important question is why are they out of the public eye? Why is the victim of a homophobic, racist or even of an Northern Ireland-related (see Omagh) attack less important than the victim of Islamist terrorism? Could it be, that it is more useful for the PM to express outrage at such attacks and sympathy for it's victims than in other cases?

Police deaths

I'll just send you to Colcam on this one.

I'll add this from Reuters.

Oh and on the killing of Menezes? Well, here's something from UPI:

The bullets, which expand and splinter inside the victim's body, were prohibited for military use under the Hague Convention of I899. However, the Home Office said Wednesday there was no restriction on their domestic use.

Oh right, so it's ok to use something domestically which is forbidden in warfare...twisted logic.


And anybody charged? Well not yet, it would seem...
BBC
The report will then be sent to the Crown Prosecution Service, which will decide whether to bring charges against any of the officers involved.

Jez takes on the plight of the elephants

News 24

There is a growing concern that the underlying motivation for the cull was profit from the sale of elephant meat, skin and by-products - estimated by The Earth organisation at R6,5m for every 800 elephants killed.

New births would ensure a stead supply of meat - and income - if the cull took place over many years, as was planned.

"This would of course explain the reluctance to fully explore contraception as a viable alternative, for contraception means no births, no meat and no extra income," said Anthony.
Now, I don't know much about elephants or nature conservation, but it seems to me the argument put forward by some, that we just don't understand that there are far too many elephants and that they are endangering other species, begs the question: is it perhaps not humans and human interference which is the problem? Perhaps a cull is needed.

Sparrow shot by TV company

BBC
Credit goes to Colcam

The bird's fate was sealed when it knocked over 23,000 and organisers feared it could knock down more. An exterminator cornered the sparrow and shot it.

The backlash followed as soon as the news got out - especially as the common house sparrow was put on the endangered list in the Netherlands last year.

That makes the shooting illegal, doesn't it?

But Big Brother creators Endemol said things started to get out of hand when staff started receiving threats.

"It was something we wish would never have happened at all," Endemol spokesman Jeroen van Waardenberg told the BBC News website. "But we made a decision because the project was very important to us and is to be screened in 16 countries."
Who cares about one stupid little bird compared to the international success of a domino-record programme?

"I just wish we could channel all this energy that went into one dead sparrow into saving the species," he said.
That's just plain sick.

17.11.05

Teenage abortion

The subject came up on Question Time last week. Should parents be told before a minor asks for an abortion?
What I find infuriating is that on sensitive cases such as this one many people seem to believe that one can give a simple 'for' or 'against' answer. There are many things to be taken into account. Parents obviously have a right to know when something like this happens. On the other hand a child has a right to confedentiality, and most importantly a child needs to be protected particularly in cases when it might be dangerous for them to let their parents know. It's just not the case, that parents are always fit to decide for their children. An 'outside' protection is necessary.
So, as with other issues concerning children, it is necessary to have flexibility with regards to laws.

Banksy by Jez!


Strange...I took this photo last year not knowing who the artist was. Then less than a month ago I saw this art work in Woody Allen's film Match Point. Two weeks later I come accross Banksy on the net and I think "that's familiar...". What's the all-seing One trying to tell me...?

Guardian vs Chomsky

A well-written piece in the Mail&Guardian (ZA)

But people like Brockes don’t like being told to use their heads. So people like Chomsky have to write books and books giving methodically “unsexy” detail about this, that and the other, and still get beaten with sticks by reactionary liberals in their own backyards, effectively (though this goes unspoken) for being heretics against the New World Order (which is not so different from the old one).

16.11.05

Guantanamo UN inspection

Daily Times

“The absence of a conclusive answer by midnight (2300 GMT) on Thursday will be taken as a refusal,” Nowak told AFP. “The situation is very clear: if the United States does not accept our conditions, we will not go,” Nowak added
Now that's what I call a threat!

Who knows this man Banksy?

Institutional racism in France

FT

Gérard Larcher said multiple marriages among immigrants was one reason for the racial discrimination which ethnic minorities faced in the job market. Overly large polygamous families sometimes led to anti-social behaviour among youths who lacked a father figure, making employers wary of hiring ethnic minorities, he explained.

“Since part of society displays this anti-social behaviour, it is not surprising that some of them have difficulties finding work ... Efforts must be made by both sides. If people are not employable, they will not be employed.”
This is in fact an attempt at minimising the responsinility of the government. However, it is evidence of racist attitudes among France's politicians. It is also a mark of disrespect to the French people, as it assumes we are a nation of racists.

Strange behaviour

Cross-dressing Hindu copper

Amazing, isn't it, how something like this can be deemed a 'mental problem', and yet kneeling open-mouthed before a man with a dog-collar who then proceeds to shove a bland piece of 'bread' into your mouth is deemed normal.

14.11.05

Bloody terrorists!

Watch video
Tony Blair on Football Focus on the BBC last week blamed increased security since september 11th for not allowing him to go to footie matches as often as he'd like to...honestly!those islamists really have it in for our culture, don't they?!

10.11.05

Incredible!

Last night on Newsnight, David Davis contender for the leadership came to the defense of Simon Hughes Lib Dem MP. Jezza Paxman asked in a disapointigly tabloidish fashion, how the Lib Dems would react if somebody died because of their opposition to the terorism bill. Hughes stuttered and in stepped Davis heroically. He made an astonishingly liberal intervention about the balance between police powers and civil rights. It was funny to watch Hughes feel compelled to reassert himself by attempting to temper Davis' stance.

9.11.05

Eco-bra


BBC

Being padded, the new bra packs a little more bulk than most regular designs, but the Japanese arm of Triumph insisted the look was more chic than sheep.

"We hope this will not only help prevent global warming but also provide a little fashion chic to the office," the company said in a statement.

The US offering to environmentalism

BBC

A spokesperson for the prince described lunch as an informal affair and said subjects discussed included farming and the Bush family's desire to farm sustainably on their ranch.

7.11.05

Neuilly

Indymedia

On riots in France

I may have been unfair on the media.
Times Online

This has in turn fed the rise of Muslim radicalism, which has now become the dominant creed of the young in the French ghettos.
There is definitely a risk that the discrimination against against minorities could fuel radicalism. The fact remains, that these riots are not 'race riots' nor are they 'islamic fundamentalism' on the march.

France has always deemed its model superior to the Anglo-Saxon approach of diversity, which has enabled ethnic minorities to retain strong bonds in cultural and religious communities. France calls this “comunitarism” and says that it promotes ghettos, exclusion, poverty, race riots and religious extremism that can ultimately lead to actions such as the London bombings.
The London bombings were linked to Britain's involvement in the war in Iraq. France has witnessed more Islamist terrorism than the UK. Using the ostrich approach to cultural and ethnic differences is the preferred French 'republican' method.

Some, such as Nicolas Sarkozy, the iconoclastic Interior Minister who is at the centre of the present crisis, have provoked outrage by saying that France should copy aspects of the Anglo-American model, starting with policies to favour the entry of ethnic minorities into education and jobs
And at the same time, he ignores the root of the anger, dismissing the rioting youth as 'scum'. This man is an opportunistist.

Both Left and Right see them as a breach of France’s republican tradition and believe that affirmative action would play into the hands of the anti-immigrant Far Right, led by Jean-Marie Le Pen.
The reality is discriminatory treatment from both socialist and conservative governments. Le Pen is but a scarecrow mainstream politicians love to use in order to rally the masses.

Jean Charles de Menezes

Colcam

Cressida Dick, "gold command" of the operation that led to the death of Jean Charles de Menezes in the bungled Stockwell tube shooting incident shortly after the July bombings in London, says she never gave the seven letter code word telling police they should kill.
Times online
Commander Cressida Dick, 44, the Oxford graduate who was “gold command” of the operation,
Oxford University or Oxford Brookes?
Police have admitted that there were difficulties keeping in contact with the police teams once they went underground at the station
'hang on aminute chief, I've got bad reception...what's that?Shoot?'

Investigators from the Independent Police Complaints Commission have been unable to use the radio transmissions to the marksmen to discover exactly what was said because they were not recorded, unlike 999 calls, which are kept.
How bloody convenient.

Ten officers including Ms Dick have been served with police regulation warnings that they may face disciplinary action.

6.11.05

Thankyou Radio 4!

I had been trying to think of a suitable translation for Sarkozy's 'karcherisé'. Well, the BBC reporter in Paris found it: 'cleaned away with a high power hose' (talking about what he's going to do to the the so-called youths of Paris' poor suburbs). Well, I suppose, if you have 'scum' and you don't want to scrub...

Revolution vs riot

When oppressed people in an enemy state take power in a revolution, Western governments and media applaud and talk of history in the making. When oppressed people in a client state stand up and resist, Western governments train the oppressors and give them weapons to murder the opposition. When oppressed people in a Western 'democracy' let their anger explode, 'our' leaders dismiss them as 'thugs' in areas which need to be 'cleaned up', 'our' media talk of 'Islamisation', and 'our' police move in, like the dictator's military, to suppress the anger.

And this from Fox News!

Anger was fanned days ago when a tear gas bomb exploded in a mosque in Clichy-sous-Bois (search) -- the northern suburb where the youths were electrocuted.
The unrest is forcing France to confront long-simmering anger in poor suburbs ringing the big cities which are mainly populated by immigrants and their French-born families, often from Muslim North Africa. They are marked by high unemployment, discrimination and despair -- fertile terrain for crime of all sorts and Muslim extremists offering frustrated youths a way out.
Government officials have held a series of meetings with Muslim religious leaders, local officials and youths from poor suburbs to try to calm the violence.
And now it seems that 'bearded Muslim brothers'(the words of a 'youth' interviewed on French radio)are acting as a 'proximity police force', trying to calm everyone down...As another 'youth' said, it shouldn't be their job, but that of the police, but not provocative police who fire tear gas bombs into a mosque.
So, it would seem that if anyone is encouraging Islamism in our immigrant suburbs, it isn't rioting, but irresponsible and provocative policing.

Fascists on the block

Yesterday, a march was held in memory of a man who was killed last week at the start of the riots in the suburbs of Paris. During the march members of an extreme-right-wing group, Bloc Identitaire, called for people to 'open their eyes' to those who 'don't like France, don't like the French'. Most of the marchers, were extremely angry about this sickening opportunism.

5.11.05

More Race Hatred


BBC

And, by the side of a swastika on the front cover, it said: "We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.
Poor sad people.

Race hatred

BBC

Leaflets were scattered, with insults against Muslims which were attributable to "Black Nation".
Is this a new kind of supremacism, or what?

Honour Killing

BBC

The pair met in 2003 through school friends, who described them as devoted to each other, with Miss Begum becoming pregnant in August 2004.
The girl must be crushed. I feel terrible for the younger brother too.

3.11.05

How bizarre!

Daily Mail

Just hours after Sun editor Rebekah Wade was arrested for assaulting husband Ross Kemp, the ex-girlfriend of his co-star Steve McFadden was also arrested for assaulting him.
According to the Sky News anchorwoman, who was bearly able to keep a straight face, it is not thought the two incidents were linked...

On Chomsky

Prospect


Chomsky openly admits he prefers "pacifist platitudes" to belligerent mendacity. This makes some wrongly charge that he is "passive in the face of evil." But neither apartheid in South Africa, nor Stalinism in Russia, nor military rule in much of Latin America were defeated or dismantled by bombardment and invasion. Chomsky had no difficulty supporting the ultimately successful campaign against apartheid, or for the Indonesian withdrawal from East Timor. He simply opposes putting US soldiers in harm's way—also meaning where they will do harm and acquire a taste for it.

Smoking ban

On the BBC's Question Time last week, a member of the audience said that he had the "right to do what [he] wanted"
Apart from one member of the audience, nobody pointed out that right stops with harming others unless it's in self-defense.

Artificially and undemocratically promoting a language


Economist via Livejournal

The Welsh Language Society, a pressure group that has seen many of its
demands incorporated into law, wants restrictions on house-building in
Welsh-speaking areas and a language act that would require businesses to deal
with customers in their preferred language.

Mitchell brother beaten by wife


Channel4

Missed this in the news...

Thanks to this hate site for bringing this to my attention.

Guardian

Zubeidi says he feels responsible. "I pray for her to be freed," he says. "Especially because she is a woman. Men are stronger - though Tali is stronger than all the men." He says Fahima is by no means the only Israeli to have visited him and maintains she never sought to assist in any acts of terror. "She never said she wanted to betray her people, to help me in an attack or anything , because that's a treacherous thing, and Tali is not a traitor. She came here to help the Palestinian people ... to help is not to attack her people."

2.11.05

Lazy journalism and integration

BBC

Days of rioting in the bleaker suburbs of Paris have highlighted discontent among many French youths of North African origin.

As part of a series on French Muslims, the BBC News website's Henri Astier looks at the issue of discrimination, a leading source of frustration in France's unemployment-riddled ghettos.
France's Muslims are not all of north African origin, and North Africans in France are not all Muslim. Kabyles are very secular. Is an aetheist American still described as a Christian? It is not possible to tell a person's religion from their ethnic looks or the sound of their name.

"People always talk of the need to 'integrate' Muslims. But the youths are French. Why should they need integrating?" asks Samia Amara, 23, a youth worker near Paris.

Mr Sabeg agrees that "integration" is just hot air. "What does it mean? Are some French people supposed to integrate and others to be integrated?"
Indeed. 'Integration' in France is based on a 'republican' ideal that everyone should fit in to a French republican mould, and suppress their roots and original culture. Despite being an island and a monarchy, Britain integrates not only immigrants, but also their original cultures.

His country, he points out, has no black or Arab TV presenters, and all MPs from mainland France are white.

Mr Valls is a firm believer in "positive discrimination" - a very un-French concept that is beginning to gain acceptance.
I disagree. The media, however, should show more images of multicultural integration in Britain and the US for example.

It's the Muslims!

YARGB

This looks like it might be the beginning of large scale clashes between Moslem youth and Police in Europe.
These are the words of someone who either doen't know what he/she is talking about, or choses to ignore the facts. While France's minorities are predominantly North African and Muslim, there is no such thing, in France, as a 'Muslim ghetto'. There is nothing to suggest that rioters in french suburbs are predominantly Islamic funadamentalists or that the riots represent a clash between Islam and Christianity.
Religious, cultural or racial profile has little to do with these riots, except in the sense that the majority of those parked in inhospitable areas of french cities are immigrants and their children born here.

Veils

BBC

"Some teachers would not see beyond the scarf and judge us - it's best if we have to take it off," says Siham, 15.
I agree. It should be a matter of choice, though.
But the key to the ban's success has been its enduring popularity. All political parties endorsed it.
There is, in fact a lot of opposition to the ban-and not only from Muslims. Many who oppose the ban are secularists and feminists-they oppose the ban because they believe in a school for all, regardless of beliefs, ethnicity or whatever. In France, school-children no longer wear a uniform. If the so-called republican leaders want to tell kids what they can and can't wear, why not bring back the uniform?

It remains contentious, not so much for the French Muslim community as a whole - which includes many secularists - but for youngsters with North African roots who have found a sense of identity through religion.
I certainly don't wish for violent reaction, but this law is yet another example of colonial and latent racist attitudes in France. This is not the sole reason for violence in certain suburbs of Paris, but I doubt it favours integration.