Where Holland has gone, Britain and the rest of Europe are following. The silencing happens bit by bit. A student paper in Britain that ran the Danish cartoons got pulped. A London magazine withdrew the cartoons from its website after the British police informed the editor they could not protect him, his staff, or his offices from attack. This happened only days before the police provided 500 officers to protect a “peaceful” Muslim protest in Trafalgar Square.It seems the British police — who regularly provide protection for mosques (as they did after the 7/7 bombs) — were unable to send even one policeman to protect an organ of free speech. At the notorious London protests, Islamists were allowed to incite murder and bloodshed on the streets, but a passer-by objecting to these displays was threatened with detention for making trouble.To paraphrase/plagiarize Glenn Reynolds, what's the point of a free press if it doesn't believe in free speech? Many EU governments are too weak to stand up for the principles they pretend to embody. Anyone remember what happened last time we saw this?
28 February 2006
27 February 2006
Why teach your children about real life when you can indoctrinate them into partisan political mythology marketing? Kids want to know.Kids need to know.And it's up to you to tell them "Why Mommy is a Democrat."That's right. The best way to make sure little Dick and Jane are dependent upon government for life it to get them started early. There is something very Clockwork Orange about this and no, I don't want to see the childrens' book shoe on the other foot.
UPDATE: Powerline has more, including an MP3 of the author of the book here.
EVEN MORE: Dr. Helen has thougths here.
26 February 2006
The question was "Write a sentence that includes six Danish companies and will cheese-off fanatical Muslims."
"The same people who recognize I came out with no medals should recognize I could have won three. I just did it my way. I'm not a martyr, and I'm not a do-gooder. I just want to go out and rock. And man, I rocked here."If he'd only skied there. Let's do the armchair forensics: 12 oz. glass, full, 10 oz. Coke, still with Coke in it ("Another sodee-pop, Bode?"), the optical haze, the bimbo . . . I smell medal ceremony!
(Mayor Chris) Coleman rode in on a big anti-tobacco white horse and made a bold promise of how he shared (Councilman) Thune's belief that it was up to politicians to safeguard the health of citizens . . . but you would think, just for the sake of appearances, politics being all about appearances these days, that he might have let the ink dry on his legislation to put bars and restaurants out of business before he lit one up.
If you signed Thune's misguided and intrusive legislation in the belief that you were doing the right thing for public health, then you don't get to smoke where somebody can see your hypocrisy firsthand. Oh, you get to smoke all you want, just like Thune does. You can smoke at home in front of the kids, you can smoke out in your garage, you can smoke when you are up at the lake in the fishing boat, just so long as nobody sees you. But you have disqualified yourself from smoking in public.
If the Palestinians want our money, then perhaps they should have considered that when the elected Hamas to power. In fact, they should consider that when they strap bombs to their teenagers and young adults and send them into Israeli pizzerias and buses. It's disappointing that the US will not treat those elections as an informed choice by the Palestinians to support terrorism, even though a separate poll from last week clearly shows that the majority of Palestinians support terrorist attacks against Israel.
So they will not commit to a two-state solution, will not commit to a cease-fire, will not commit to negotiations -- but if they don't get American money, we'll see a "backlash". I'd say they have nothing left with which to bargain. Cut them off, and let them see the American backlash instead.
23 February 2006
Minnesota Public Radio is suing an Internet television network co-founded by Al Gore, claiming the network's alternative and amateur news reports interfere with MPR's trademark. The San Francisco-based network, "Current TV," and the MPR music station "The Current" are both transmitted via the Internet. MPR says the similar names creates confusion for potential consumers.I recall a scene from Dr. Strangelove where General Ripper and Captain Mandrake were discussing prisoner-of-war torture at the hands of the WWII-era Japanese. Mandrake recalled, "I don't think they wanted me to talk really, I don't think they wanted me to say anything. (The torture) was just their way of having a bit of fun, the swines. Strange thing is they make such bloody good cameras."
There capsulizes my feelings about Minnesota Public Radio: It's a taxpayer-funded monopoly that's non-profit in name (and exemption status) only that operates with holier-than-thou attitude and heavy political hand. Strange thing is they have such a bloody great FM music station.
I'm not alone in this hold-my-nose and listen position:
Bill Kling took it upon himself to destroy the competition, buying WCAL and taking its programming off the air. Now, during MPR's pledge week, we have the Star Tribune story about Kling's half-million-dollar compensation package. As MPR pledge hucksters beg for donations, perhaps they could let us all know where the money goes. Sure, I listen to MPR, since, thanks to Kling, there is no longer an alternative, but Lucifer will traverse his realm on ice skates before I will even begin to consider pledging.I also don't pledge. As a Saint Paul taxpayer, I'm perpetually on the hook for MPR's experiments in creative corporate finance, so I'm doing my part to prop them up as it is.
21 February 2006
cellophane flowers never happened for meHear the song; buy the CD. That's what I did.
been sleeping the day off
watching the night fall
filling my time share
maybe the rain stops following me
dripping the colors
running the daylight
over the cloud burst
hoping they don't burst
right before my eyes
maybe the rain will stop following me
with millions of colors reflected in daylight
right on the kickdrum
turning the sound up full
Anyway, we've made an ever-so-small switch around the Dog Farm, and we did not initiate it. Helping us make up our minds was Majdi Wadi. Wadi owns Holy Land; a bakery, grocery and deli in Minneapolis. Other local grocery stores, including our regular store, also sell Holy Land products, including pita bread, which is pretty darn good and usually in our 'fridge.
"Dear Customer. The Denmark newspaper published a cartoon degrading the Prophet Mohammed. The Denmark government refuses to apologize to the Muslim world for this; therefore Holy Land management decided to join the other business leaders in the world to boycott all products made in Denmark." In addition, Wadi asks customers to boycott Danish goods wherever they shop.Well Wadi, we believe your boycott of everything Danish is misguided. The government of Denmark doesn't owe you an apology, and if you can't grasp that, I suggest a visit to a library. I don't doubt your conviction, but you're barking up the wrong tree.
"I respect freedom of speech," he continued, "but I think there must be limits. I think there should be an international law to protect beliefs. It is wrong not to respect Jesus. It is wrong not to respect Buddha. And it is wrong to not respect the Prophet Mohammed."Actually Wadi, you may think you respect freedom of speech, but you don't. You seek protection for yourself and your prophet by limiting the freedoms of people worldwide, including, ironically, the welcoming and tolerant culture to which you chose to immigrate.
This is a wee bit sad because we here at Ravenscroft Dog Farm prefer to buy local goods when the option presents itself, but next time we need pita bread in our home, it'll be something other than the Holy Land brand. We wish Wadi no ill will, and we support people with the conviction to put their money where their mouths are. Optimistically perhaps, we expect Wadi would reciprocate and support our decision to stop using his products.
20 February 2006
(M)ore than 500 Muslims from 13 Twin Cities mosques and Islamic center walked to express their love and devotion for the prophet Mohammed Sunday. "We are living here among people who don't know anything about us, and we have come together to educate them peacefully," (Imani Jaafar-Mohammed) told the crowd, which erupted into passionate, in some quarters tearful, chants of "Peace! No more violence!" and "Allah-u-Akbar!"Educating Minnesotans by demanding that everyone pay homage to their prophet . . .
"We want to show solidarity with every Muslim feeling pain," (Hassan) Mohamud told the crowd. "We want the U.S. government to take a position on this matter."Mohamud should be listening to Mohammed because he clearly doesn't know anything about the land he's moved to, like the federal government is not the arbiter of freedom and political discourse.
Farheen Hakeem, 30, the Green Party candidate for mayor of Minneapolis . . . said, "We are as much a part of society here as anywhere else in the world. We demand to be heard."You ran for mayor. You've been all over the Star Tribune and all the mayoral debates. You are a legitimate media darling. When have you not been heard?
Mustafa Diriye, 28, of Minneapolis, said he attended because "along with 1.3 billion Muslims around the world, I feel hurt by the insult to the prophet."Hey Mustafa, you think you might eventually get around to feeling hurt due to the people of your faith slaughtering others who had noting to do with any cartooning?
Omar Jamal of the Somali Justice Advocacy Center in St. Paul: "We need to create a political dialogue around these things so they don't erupt like volcanoes. Moderate, peaceful voices are so important."Oh Omar, your command of victim-language is impressive, but when you seek a dialogue to prevent violence, you imply that non-Muslims are also responsible for the violence of Muslims, and you are wrong. More form TigerHawk:
The Christian Right and the anti-religion Left are each fairly intolerant of the other, but neither are violent and both groups prefer their own company, anyway. Resurgent Islam is changing this dynamic. The cartoon intifada has taught us that Muslims all over the world believe that they have the religious obligation to reach in to Western countries and nullify our most cherished rights. Not only does the "Muslim street" think this, but we have endured the absurd spectacle of Arab kings lecturing the Danes and other Europeans about respect.Tolerance is a two-way street. Those who do not grant it have no right to demand it.
Distinguished Senator Jill Edwards questions "whether it was appropriate to honor a person who killed other people." She further wonders whether "a member of the Marine Corps was an example of the sort of person UW wanted to produce." Another distinguished Senator, Ashley Miller, "commented that many monuments at UW already commemorate rich white men."You can read the sacntimoniousness here. I weep for the future.
We will spare you the rest of the deliberations and ruminations of the UW student legislative body, filled as it is with pious parsing and handwringing and ahistorical thumbsucking over how to mention that embarrassing Medal of Honor in some way that would leave no trail back to the fact that it was won in a war, where killing took place, to stop an aggressor bent on subjugating at least one half of the globe.
18 February 2006
Peter Crouch comes alive at 19 minutes and the Reds put the goon squad out of the FA Cup for the first time in 85 years. Liverpool 1, Manchester United 0.
Bye bye Gary . . .
United captain Gary Neville was inevitably jeered after his goal
celebration in their victory over Liverpool at Old Trafford.
16 February 2006
From his rose red lips to his rhinestone hips he belted out song after song as he drank from a brown paper bag.
And the songs he sang of love and pain, so pure perfect reflections of human imperfections, it damn near choked me up
But the rest of the show, was kind of slow.
And then someone woke me up.
Later on the Astros were silently beating the living crap out of Cincinnati on the TV above and a little to the left of the great Hank Williams' head.
As a busty suicide blonde waitress poured him a double shot of 'whatever you got' and laughingly said 'I thought you were dead.'
The pool balls cracked as he tilted his head back and told her how he had been a big star but now country music was full of freaks.
He sat there, in the TV glare.
Mascara streaked his cheeks.
When I was only sixteen years old I went from Houston to Abilene with a spunky stunningly handsome woman in a Volkswagen Bug.
She was grown with some kids all her own, a committment-free divorcee, and I was a man in love.
We had only one 8-track tape but it was of the late great Hank Williams and we sang in two-part harmony.
'Hey good lookin', how's about cookin'Something up with me.'
Back at the bar they were calling last call so I gave the barmaid a credit card to pay up my tab.
The TV was turned off and the stage was dark and the great Hank Williams was gone so I asked her to call me a cab.
She said if you like I can give you a ride, so there we were out the door and into the city of brotherly loveInto the night, out of sight.
In a VW Bug.
"The Great Hank" - Robert Earl Keen
Finally we're getting to the NCAA basketball tournament. Count me among those who don't care about it and won't watch any of it. It so ponderous. Try not to laugh when someone trys to layer and weave this current circus to the great game James Naismith refined a century ago, which had no place for today's synthetic showboating and narcissistic hubris. Try not to laugh when someone says these are the finest basketball players in the nation, despite a paucity of non-black athletes that make the NCAA tournament look like a NAACP teachout. Try not to point out that something's not really a sport when the very structure and programming of the event is dictated by Las Vegas odds-makers and office pool drones while some washed-up former coach tells the television audience why this year's competition is the best ever. So if only to hasten the arrival of the day the NCAA basketball tournament is done, when we can move to the Major League Baseball season - for God's sake, let's get that bracket of 64 set and rolling.
What? Don't like the sound of this? Questionable racial undertones? Make you uncomfortable? Yea, that's how I felt when I saw what Bryant Gumbal had to say about the Winter Olympics.
14 February 2006
Keep up your guard. The manic/depressive Minnesota legislature, the largest per capita in the nation, is about to mount up for another ride. Here's a heads-up reagarding the forthcoming stampede sure to trample your household's finances. The Democrat Faithful: There is never enough of your money for them.
The only thing they are capable of is spending tax money. Their sole purpose in life to redistribute wealth. As they become less connected with any part of the population that produces prosperity, they become more brazen with how they use confiscatory tax proposals to pay off their political base.
Democrats in the Minnesota Senate on Monday announced plans for a constitutional amendment that would increase the sales tax by one-fourth of 1 percent and dedicate the proceeds to conservation projects, as well as to zoos, arts programs and public broadcasting.
What, won't there be any earmarks for Big Education, the Sierra Club or MoveOn?
DFLers who proposed the tax increase stressed that it would amount to only 25 cents on each $100 purchase of taxable goods.
This is exactly the tactic demonized by Minneapolis DFL stoodges by those trying to get Hennipen County on board for a new baseball stadium, which (at last tally) was three cents on $20.
Sen. Dallas Sams, DFL-Staples, the sponsor of the Senate plan, said Democrats proposed their amendment as a tax increase to end a debate about what programs would be cut to allow more money for outdoors programs.
So nowhere in the state budget there is any built-in funding for outdoors programs (whatever that is)? What are you clowns spending all the money on now? Where do the millions spent on DNR and state parks come from now?
Rep. Tom Hackbarth of Cedar, the sponsor of 2005 sales-tax-dedication legislation that is still pending in the House, called the Democratic proposal "more of the same old baloney." He accused the Democrats of playing politics by announcing their plan in advance of Pawlenty's meeting today. "We will not do a bill in the House of Representatives if it's a tax increase," Hackbarth said. He also said he and many House Republicans want no part of a plan that would put arts programs and zoos (and public bleeping radio! - OB) into the funding mix with hunting and fishing projects.
Okay; one-quarter of one percent does not seem like much, but according to the nitwits pushing this jive, that'll still add up to nearly $190 million. At some point, this becomes real amounts of money. Hell, why stop with the crummy one-quarter of one percent? Let's make it three-quarters of a percent. That'd be more like $570 million. What's that matter, Democrats, don't you care about Minnesota? Let's go; jack up our taxes. We all want to care as much as you fools.
No shame at the capitol, and no integrity in the screwheads in the Minnesota Legislature.
13 February 2006
UPDATE: A Colored Bull Terrier won the Terrier Group. A Pug won the Toy Group, which is pretty good news considering the other vermin in the Toy Group, and a Dalmation, another legitimate breed, won the Nonsporting Group.
Also, the unanamous first-night favorite around Ravenscroft Dog Farm was Sherman.
The threats led officials to cancel classes for all students in the district last Monday. The previous day, (Superintendent Dave) Kragness heard that students had been sending messages -- including threats to shoot one student at school -- via computer, he said. Besides the arrests Friday, six students were suspended last week while authorities seized computers to trace the threatening messages. Kragness said the six have been identified as being involved in the threats in some way.Act Two:
Two teenagers were arrested Friday in Isanti County after being accused of fatally shooting four horses and a cow. Sheriff's deputies found two 16-year-old boys and two loaded rifles with scopes in a 1993 Toyota Camry. They arrested the boys, who had skipped classes at St. Francis High School. Investigators said one of the teenagers confessed to shooting three horses and one cow.Act Three
Francisco Javier Serrano, 22, whose story made news around the world, had been ordered by a judge to leave the United States because he was here illegally. On Jan. 5, he hugged supporters goodbye at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport and walked toward the security screeners. But he has not been heard from since -- in the United States or Mexico. Tim Counts, spokesman for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement's regional office in Bloomington, confirmed that his office does not know where Serrano is. He also said Serrano is one of about 450,000 people across the country who have orders to be removed from the country because of variousThe common link in these stories? Each of these youth were failed by a society that did not provide them with the ass kicking the so desperately needed at a critical juncture in their lives. I expect all three cases to ultimately result in the soft coddling the Minnesota criminal justice system is best known for.
John Hinderocker fisks Nick Coleman:
I expect the lefty boilerplate from Coleman, but I used to think he cared about facts, truth and other pesky parts of (columnist or not) journalistic integrity. It's clear Coleman is lazy, sloppy or both. Preach to the choir, Nick, but someday they might be singing a different tune, and then where will you be?
Coleman quarrels, apparently, with the idea that "the terrorists of 9/11," al Qaeda, are the enemy in Iraq. But why? Hasn't he heard of Zarqawi? Is he unaware of "al Qaeda in Iraq"? The fact that we are killing al Qaeda members and supporters in Iraq is inconvenient for liberal opponents of the war; but how, exactly, does Coleman propose to deny it? Coleman continues:But more curious than the dubious assertions is the agenda of this big-bucks ad campaign: Who is paying for this pro-war propaganda? News reports identified the sponsor as "the conservative Progress for America Voter Fund," but that barely scratches the surface. Progress for America is a campaign front for President Bush, meaning we have reached the point when the money men for a president who no longer faces election keep spending on spin to try to shore up support for a mistaken elective war.
Note the quick transition from debating the message to smearing the messenger. In fact, Progress For America is a conservative issue advocacy organization, just as MoveOn.org, ACT, etc., are liberal issue advocacy organizations. (Except, of course, the liberals have more money.) Coleman derides PFA as "money men." But how, exactly, does he expect three servicemen to get their message out? Does he think they can afford to buy ads on television? Does he think that liberals will underwrite their message? Does he think his own newspaper will print it?
Read it all. It's an excellent primer in disingenuousness.
11 February 2006
I actually didn't see the opening cermonies. I was coloring with my niece.
09 February 2006
There are some things too important to be left to the people in charge. To abdicate the stewardship of the Formula 1 race at Europe's finest practical race course should be a punishable by cruel and unusual circumstances.
Formula One will be without one of its most prestigious races this year following a decision to withdraw the Belgian Grand Prix from the calendar. Red Bull driver David Coulthard told the BBC the decision was disappointing. "It's a shame because it's one of the great circuits. Spa-Francorchamps is considered by many to be the finest racing circuit in the world and is a favourite of many of the F1 drivers.
But the fact that al-Qaeda embraces violence and celebrates terrorism -- doesn't this small detail destroy the basis of (President Jimmy) Carter's analogy? If you can equate bin Laden with Martin Luther King, and al-Qaeda to King's non-violent movement, then, by all means, go ahead and draw the same analogy that Mr. Carter drew about Bush's domestic surveillance program. If, on the other hand, you cannot equate the two, then Carter's analogy becomes at best ridiculous and at worst obscene.
Funny, I thought all the crushing of dissent came from the Oval Office and all it's lackeys. Here's a link to Cooper's original piece.
At times my work has drawn criticism, protest, denunciation and condemnation. Yet not once has anything I’ve penned drawn the direct threat of a lawsuit. Not until now, that is. Sitting in front of me is a 20-page demand that threatens such action if the Weekly does not “correct” or retract what I have written. The threat doesn’t come from an offended Bush-administration official, nor from a fat-cat factory owner, nor a sweatshop operator. It comes, rather, from lawyers representing a union. The United Farm Workers.
I can fairly summarize its complaint by saying it vigorously disagrees with my suggestion that it has failed in its historic mission. When you consider that at most 2 percent of California’s farm workers are represented by the UFW, and that working conditions overall for those workers are in decline, it’s difficult to conclude otherwise. The UFW is free to dissent from that notion. But since this is still America, a difference of opinion is not, and should not be, the basis of a lawsuit.
06 February 2006
The fast-food chain, Burger King, is withdrawing its ice-cream cones after the lid of the dessert offended a Muslim. The man claimed the design resembled the Arabic inscription for Allah, and branded it sacrilegious, threatening a "jihad".
The offending lid was spotted in a branch in Park Royal last week by business development manager Rashad Akhtar, 27, of High Wycombe. He was not satisfied by the decision to withdraw the cones and has called on Muslims to boycott Burger King. He said: "This is my jihad. How can you say it is a spinning swirl? If you spin it one way to the right you are offending Muslims."
Rashad may be devout, but he's also mixing stupid with blind and he clearly suffers from the inability to deal with real life. Hey, Rashad, you idiot, no one at Burger King was working from the Big Book of Islam when coming up with the logo. It's ice cream and nothing more.
First, the Bush administration wisely adopted a Zen-like strategy of keeping low and letting the ankle-biting Europeans take the lead in dealing with radical Islamists like the Iranian theocracy and Hamas. As we stayed silent and played the sullen bad cop, the good guys were sorely disappointed at learning that, yes, the Iranians want both the bomb and Israel destroyed, and that, yes, Hamas, is still intent on annihilating the Jewish state and expecting subsidies to realize that aim. Second guessing and cheap anti-Americanism are easy without responsibility, but the Europeans found very quickly that for all their subtlety and exalted rhetoric they did no better than George Bush in dealing with these anti-Western fanatics.
My husband is a liar and a cheat. He has cheated on me from the beginning, and when I confront him, he denies everything. What's worse, everyone knows he cheated on me. It is so humiliating. Also, since losing his job four years ago, he has not even looked for a new one! All he does is buy cigars and cruise around and shoot the bull with his pals, while I have to work to pay the bills. Since our daughter went away to college, he doesn't even pretend to like me and hints that I am a lesbian. What should I do?
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Grow up and dump him. For Pete's sake, you do not need him any more, you are a United States Senator from New York, act like it!
Very few societies are genuinely multicultural. Most are bicultural: On the one hand, there are folks who are black, white, gay, straight, pre-op transsexual, Catholic, Protestant, Buddhist, worshippers of global-warming doom-mongers, and they rub along as best they can. And on the other hand are folks who do not accept the give-and-take, the rough-and-tumble of a "diverse" "tolerant" society, and, when one gently raises the matter of their intolerance, they threaten to kill you, which makes the question somewhat moot.
My response to this nonsense is to wonder why Muslims don't grow up. If your co-religionists are going to take political stands, and blow up innocent people in the name of Islam, political cartoonists are going to occasionally take satirical swipes at your religion.
Tinklenberg said Wetterling assured him many times that she wasn't going to get into the congressional race this year. His wife, Terri, even gave her Senate campaign $500. "I'm sad to say that I believe one of the things that has changed the most has been Patty," Tinklenberg said after Wetterling launched her campaign in a news conference. "We find it a little ironic that the money we contributed may now be used against us. It's disappointing."Homespun grassroots energy, or old-school DFL political sanctimoniousness?
Jamie Redknapp - "For something so silly, I think I'd have booked Arjen Robben, to be honest. For me that's nothing. To go down like that is wrong and I'm sure he'll be embarrassed when he sees it. He'll be embarrassed by his behaviour.
Alan Hanson - (T)his wouldn't be the first time Robben has done something like this, so we can hardly say it is out of character. This is a continental trait. The foreign imports have brought many great things to our game, with their skill and technical ability, but they have also brought bad things. One of those is going down as if you have been shot when no-one has actually touched you. If referees don't act against footballers who pretend they have been hurt by nothing more than a pat on the face, then football will continue to suffer from this plague."
Rafael Benitez - "Maybe we need to go quickly because I must go to the hospital to see Robben. Maybe he is in the hospital now, [it is] unbelievable if you don't stop these things. Reina has done a mistake because he is under pressure but the other player dived so it is crazy to see a red card for this things and the number of kicks that you can see during the game, its crazy. Robben was talking with him, then Reina touched him, and it was a dive, it was so clear. Then Gallas went for Reina and maybe if Reina dive, maybe it is another red card, I don't understand these things."
03 February 2006
Art is whre you find it.
I should just get out of here and start driving south on Interstate 5; but I need to stay near, in case you suddenly remember that I'm alive. But I have this nagging fear that sex was all you needed. I've tried to persevere; I guess I've not succeeded. And is it sexist to say that I thought just boys were meant to behave in this way? And though you seemed quite sincere, will you even recognise my face this time next year? Well I'll remember how your eyes sparkled in the moonlight. You can surely sympathise; I just wanted more than one night. And yes there was one particular glance that made me afraid. That you were just seeing me as a chance of getting laid.
02 February 2006
There really is nothing lower on the informational food chain than the cover-to-cover puffery of Minneapolis/St. Paul Magazine. Every town of size has a similar publication. They are 100% tripe, full of vapidity and shameless promotion. Their very editorial structure is printed prostitution caterting directly to society's most clueless.
One month it's some arbitrary list of best restaurants. Next month it's that Baby Mozart jive about grooming your infant for the perfect preschool. The month after that; a fantastic yarn that purports to rank local doctors, including ones who specialize in coddling your chic new ailment; the one you heard about on the Dr. Phil Power Hour. Every segment is crafted to help adult losers to find happiness in the form of a barista, delicatessen or homeopath, for which the reades are grateful becasue they don't make a move without marching orders from Glitteratti.
What, you may ask, could be more fabulous than anther article dictating your new preferred theater, dog groomer or progressive grocer? Why, to hear it from the mouths of the allegedly hip, that's what! Just click on your hipster of choice; each is more fabulous that the next, but beware; it's tough to choose when you're going deaf from the pack of phony cools all screaming "please love us" like a nest of hungry baby birds.
01 February 2006
Armed militants angered by a cartoon drawing of the Prophet Mohammed published in European newspapers surrounded EU offices in Gaza on Thursday and threatened to kidnap foreigners as outrage over the caricatures spread across the Islamic world. More than 300 students demonstrated in Pakistan, chanting "Death to France!" and "Death to Denmark!"The religion of peace, you say? Thankfully, there is some EU spine on this one:
Foreign journalists, diplomats and aid workers began leaving Gaza as gunmen there threatened to kidnap citizens of France, Norway, Denmark and Germany unless those governments apologize for the cartoon. Gunmen in the West Bank city of Nablus entered four hotels to search for foreigners to abduct and warned their owners not to host guests from several European countries. Gunmen said they were also searching apartments in Nablus for Europeans. Militants in Gaza said they would shut down media offices from France, Norway, Denmark and Germany, singling out the French news agency Agence France Presse. "Any citizens of these countries, who are present in Gaza, will put themselves in danger," a Fatah-affiliated gunman said outside the EU Commission's office in Gaza, flanked by two masked men holding rifles.
Norwegian, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Swiss, Belgian and German newspapers have already reproduced the drawings out of solidarity with the Danish newspaper. News giants such as the British BBC and the French Le Monde newspaper have also joined the campaign, with the latter contributing with works from its own illustrators.The long-term effects of militant immigrants refusing to assimilate to the cultures in the nations they themselves seek out is every part as threatening to crackpots with the bomb.
Commissioner for Justice, Security and Freedom Franco Frattini Thursday said that although he could understand the feelings of indignation and sadness of the Muslim community, "one of the founding principles of our Europe is freedom of expression,
including the right to criticize." The Union's homeland security chief lashed out at the aggressive measures taken against Denmark by some Middle Eastern countries. "It should be crystal clear to all that violence, intimidation, and the calls for boycotts or for restraints on the freedom of the press are completely unacceptable and will not bring about a constructive discussion between communities"
Canada's top court has given the country's human rights commission the go-ahead to investigate whether flight attendants should be paid the same as pilots and airline mechanics. The Canadian Union of Public Employees began the case in 1991, arguing that the airline discriminated because it paid attendants differently "for what it argued was equally valuable work performed by mechanical personnel and pilots." The section says it is discriminatory for an employer to pay different wages to male and female employees in the same "establishment" who are performing work of equal value.The union is trying to get flight attendants paid the same as pilots by claiming they do equitable work in the same "establishment." The preposterousness of this thinking is stunning. Given Air Canada's fiscal condition, they would be cutting pilot pay to match that of flight attendants rather than entertain the folly of what the union is trying to pull off.
If this goes through, I think the very first Air Canada flight should a trans-Atlantic jaunt full of judges and union officials. It should be a plane exclusively serviced and flown by flight attendants. I mean, the skills and training of flight attendants are basically identical to those of commercial pilots and airframe mechanics, right?