Saturday, January 12, 2008

America's Nazi police again

For more instances of police misbehaviour, browse through the archives of this site -- e.g. here and here

The mother of an 11-year-old boy abducted by SWAT team members and taken to a hospital after he was bruised while horsing around is warning members of her community of the "Nazi" tactics she endured, including a statement from the officers that her "rights" were "only in the movies."

The case involves Jon Shiflet, who injured himself while trying to grab the handle of a door on a car his sister was driving. He slipped and fell to the pavement, hitting his head. His parents treated him for the injury and rejected paramedics' demands that they be allowed to take him to a hospital. Nearly 36 hours later, SWAT team members broke into the family home in western Colorado near New Castle and took Jon to a hospital, where a doctor said the family should keep ice on his bruise, exactly the treatment the family already had been providing.

Tina Shiflett, Jon's mother, has written a letter to the editor to a local newspaper, the Post Independent, "to awaken, alert and appall any who read it and hear the bells ringing." "A fully armed SWAT team broke into our home, slammed my children to the floor face down with their hands behind their backs and shoved a gun in my daughter's face and handcuffed her." her letter said.

In a separate letter to WND, she elaborated a little more fully. During the attack, she wrote, "One (officer) grabbed my daughter Beth (18 years), who also had a gun to her face, slammed her down and kneed her in the back and held her in that position. My sons Adam (14) and Noah (only 7) lay down willingly, yet they were still forced to put their hands behind their backs and were yelled at to keep their heads down. "My daughter Jeanette was coming out from the back bedroom when she was grabbed, drug down the hallway, across a couch and slammed to the ground," she said. "The officers then began throwing scissors and screwdrivers across the room (out of our reach, I suppose) and going through our cupboards. "I asked if I could make a phone call and was told, 'no.' My daughter asked if that wasn't one of our rights. The reply was made, 'That's only in the movies,'" she told WND.

It was some unidentified person, possibly a paramedic who had been refused permission to take Jon Shiflett to the hospital as she wanted, who provided information last week that convinced a magistrate to issue a court order that Jon be taken into state custody and examined by a doctor. He was taken by SWAT team members dispatched by the sheriff to the family's home at 11 p.m. at night, and they punched a hole in the front door and held guns on other children in the family in order to take Jon.

"The armed men in black masks took my terrified son against his wishes to Grand River Hospital, where he was examined by a doctor and interrogated by Social Services. No evidence was found that he had not been properly taken care of. Upon his return, we were told to keep ice on his head," Tina Shiflett's letter to the editor said.

"To the SWAT Team members . how far will you go in 'just doing your job?' If you feel no guilt busting into an innocent family's home, traumatizing young children and stomping the security found therein, will you follow more horrific orders?" she wrote. "May I remind you that in Nazi Germany, outrageous, monstrous crimes were committed by soldiers 'just doing their job?' What will be next? Where will this stop?" she wrote. "Fathers, mothers, families and countrymen, I challenge you to consider our story and ask yourself the question, 'If this were my family, what would I do?' For it very well could be you . next!"

Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario told WND he simply ordered his officers to do exactly what the magistrate demanded. "I was given a court order by the magistrate to seize the child, and arrange for medical evaluation, and that's what we did," he said.

The situation developed at the Apple Tree Mobile Home Park near New Castle last week when Jon Shiflett was horsing around and fell. Tom Shiflett carried his son home and put an ice pack on his head, while examining him to see whether his mental faculties were there. The boy correctly recited Bible verses and spelled words, the parents told WND.

But paramedics were called by a neighbor, and when they arrived, Tom Shiflett let them see his son, but refused their demands that he be taken to a hospital. The paramedics then apparently lobbied the city police, the sheriff's office, social workers and eventually the magistrate in order to get their way in having Jon taken to a hospital.

Jim Bradford, a court clerk in Garfield County, said it was a juvenile matter and he could not comment on any aspect of the case, and he declined to allow WND to leave a message for Garfield County Magistrate Lain Leoniak, who signed the order.


Pseudo-science about "gender" in Sweden (An echo of a disowned past)

Gender research publications in Sweden are used by the massive welfare state to rule out all norms of human behavior and declare "obsolete" all traditional morals and ethics. They call their research "science" and then ridicule all opponents of feminism, "diversity" and "gender equality" as ignoramuses denying the findings of science. Social engineering backed by a substantial portion of the Swedish GDP is reworking the basic institutions of human life and reproduction.

This is not the first time politicized science has held sway in my country. In 1921, on the Friday 13th of May, the Swedish national parliament voted to create a "Statens institut f"r rasbiologi"; a National Institute of Racial Biology. It was given the task by the state to

"strive for a steady theoretical foundation for an exact racial hygiene and a rational demographic politics".

The attempt was to scientifically determine the characteristics of a small subgroup of humanity, the few million Swedes, and engineer a better race. The same ferment which later animated the Nazi racial programs received the imprimatur of the Swedish state. The proposal was championed by major politicians, like rightist Arvid Lindmann and Social Democrat Hjalmar Branting. All the parties from the Left to the Right voted yes on this issue. There were no ideological differences during the debates. The one debate was how much financial support the institute should get. The morality of the venture was never challenged. All the parties happily were in unanimous agreement. This happy story ends in Auschwitz.

When we look back at that situation today, it is hard to believe it could ever happen; all parties agreeing on the same issue without any ideological debate or polemics, on such a delicate matter that if it would have been brought up today you would definitely go to jail charged with "Hate Speech". There is one perfectly simple answer; it was the political correctness of that time. It reminds me a lot of contemporary politics in Sweden; no ideological differences between the Left and the Right -- only arguing over how much money that should be spent on this and that.

Today we can see the same thing happening all over again, though in the opposite extreme direction. But this time it is really about denying all differences among people, to the extreme. The National Secretariat of Gender Research was inaugurated in 1998 on the 2nd of September. Two years earlier the national parliament voted to create such an institute and place it at the University of Gothenburg "to put greater effort on research with sex-/gender perspective". No one was arguing about morals here, either.

On its website, the University of Gothenburg says it is looking for a professor whose "expertise mainly concerns equality- and diversity issues and gender scientific organization theory." This is no joke; they want a professor in Equality- and Diversity Issues. In another scientific publication named "Sex and Change: continuity and normality in relatives relations to transsexuals" the researcher initially states that

"The categorization of people into two kinds of subjects, men and women, as well as the notion that gender is natural and lifelong, are predominant ideas in contemporary society".

The feminist conclusion: people do not consist of two biologically different categories; they are categorized by existing norms into men and women. This was a PhD thesis at the University of Stockholm, which is like all other universities in Sweden: funded by the state to serve the latter.

The state wants this kind of research for one purpose only: to crank out "evidence" that proves that there are no differences between men and women biologically. They say that the very concept of sex is completely made up by old cultural and social evil conservative norms, which have sole purpose of suppressing all women in society. Once the "science is in place, these norms must be crushed without hesitation. There is no way the "homophobes" and "xenophobes" can oppose them.

Sweden's racial biology of the 1920s and the 21st century's science of gender are strikingly similar. Both institution were founded by state to prove a scientific basis for their version of political correctness. Both were used to legitimize an extreme; one wanting to prove all differences and the other wanted to prove that there were no differences. And I have disturbing fear that the science of gender will meet the same terrible destiny as racial biology. I just don't know how.



During this presidential campaign, voters will hear much about the divergent economic realities between "the rich" and "the middle class." Yet there is another partition in America that is less visible, but no less troubling. The great divide between the civilian and military communities leaves the nation and its electorate ill-equipped to make informed judgments about military and international affairs.

I recently returned from a trip to San Diego, during which I toured the Marine Corps Recruit Depot and spent two days at sea with the officers and crew of the USS Nimitz. To say the least, it renewed my respect for the professionalism, competence, dedication, and sacrifice of America's men and women in uniform. I was deeply impressed by the vigor and apparent confidence with which they attend to their duties.

A quick glance at the troops I met immediately revealed a broad representation of America's ethnic groups - a diversity that's typical throughout America's armed forces. Statistics reveal high standards of educational attainment and the near nonexistence of illegal drug use or criminal backgrounds. Many come from families in which military service is a common experience. Yet I can't help concluding that the upper and upper-middle or "elite" social classes seem to be conspicuously absent.

A Navy admiral told me, "America is not at war. Its military is." He was acutely aware that a prominent segment of society had little but tax money invested in the outcome.

The civilian leaders with whom I traveled to the ship were clearly surprised by their exposure to young Americans who were seriously and stoically preparing to deploy to a war from which some might not return. Concepts of duty, honor, and sacrifice were simply not central to the life experiences of these civilians. America's elites don't necessarily lack patriotism, but precious few of these leaders have engaged in military service themselves. They simply lack reasonable reference points.

In the middle of the 20th century, military service was near universal for American men. While some used their privileged status to escape arduous or risky duty, society as a whole came together in the common cause of national defense. As a result, America was full of veterans who could place "news from the front" in context for friends and neighbors.

For example, to the extent that the American family received accurate estimates of casualties from the Normandy landings in 1944, a nearby uncle or father would have been able to put those figures in context by declaring, "I was on the Western Front in the Great War; we could have lost many more on Omaha Beach. All things considered, it seems that they managed that campaign as well as could be hoped."

A society with veterans represented at all levels of the community is better equipped to interpret accounts of inadvertent civilian casualties, interrogation interpreted as torture, or prisoner abuse. With the abdication of the upper classes from military service, most elites in the media, private sector, and government service don't have the intimate human context for the realities of war.

The debate about US engagement in Iraq is at its core an estimate of whether America is winning - or indeed can win, given the circumstances. The fourth estate long ago declared this war unwinnable. But how do we know that? How can they?

No electorate can make informed decisions about the exercise of military power in a far-off theater if it lacks a reasonable measure of collective experience with military matters. And any society that restricts its information and analysis to the sound bites of "embedded" journalists and political pundits will find itself highly susceptible to the manipulations of partisan politicians and interest groups at either extreme of any debate. It is simply too difficult to separate hope from fear and fiction from fact.

What can we do to correct course? To begin, America must find a way to reengage the nation's elites with the satisfactions and sacrifices of military and national service. Leading colleges should reinstate ROTC programs. Corporations should emphasize postmilitary recruiting. Likewise, professional organizations such as bar associations and business trade groups must seek opportunities to attend military expositions and demonstrations.

Just as America responded to the Soviet Union's Sputnik launch some 50 years ago with a vigorous effort to strengthen math and science education, America today must overhaul its school history curricula to engage students in military culture. And it must equip them to effectively and skeptically evaluate future military and political issues in the context of past experience.

It is only with an experienced and knowledgeable citizenry that we as a nation can prosecute sound strategy to achieve US policy goals while avoiding the pitfalls of failure and their attendant human, financial, and diplomatic costs.


Homosexual men are as bad at navigating as women

This rather tends to support the theory that homosexuality is caused by a hormonal disturbance in utero -- with homosexuals being exposed to excess female hormones, with an effect on brain development

Gay men are as bad as women at navigating, research has shown. Both share the same poor sense of direction and rely on local landmarks to get around, a study suggests. They are also slower to take in spatial information than heterosexual men. How this relates to parking a car - a task women famously struggle with, according to the stereotype - is open to question. But researchers say it is likely to make driving in a strange environment more challenging for gay men and women than for straight male motorists.

Psychologists at Queen Mary, University of London, conducted computer-based tests of spatial learning and memory on 140 volunteers recruited through advertisements in newspapers and magazines. They showed that gay men, straight women and lesbians navigated in much the same way and shared the same weaknesses. But there were also differences between gay and heterosexual men and straight and lesbian women.

Previous research had already shown that the male myth of women being poor navigators has some bearing on reality. Men consistently outperform women on tasks requiring navigation and discovering hidden objects. Women, on the other hand, are more successful in tests requiring them to remember where objects lie.

The Queen Mary team, led by Dr Qazi Rahman, used virtual reality simulations of two common tests of spatial learning and memory developed at Yale University. In one, the Morris Water Maze (MWM) test, volunteers were placed in a "virtual pool" and had to "swim" through a maze to find a hidden submerged platform. Cues in the form of pictures, doorways, a lamp, a bookcase and other landmarks were sited in different places. The other task, the Radial Arm Maze test (RAM), involved finding "rewards" - musical tones - by exploring eight "arms" radiating out from a circular central junction. Four arms contained a reward and four did not, and participants had to avoid traversing an arm more than once.

During the MWM test, gay men and straight women took significantly longer to find the hidden platform than straight men and lesbians. But the performance of gay and straight men did not differ in the RAM test. They also behaved the same way in the water maze test once the rough location of the platform had been established. Gay and straight men both spent more time in the area searching for the platform than straight women and lesbians. "Not only did straight men get started on the MWM test more quickly than gay men and the two female groups, they also maintained that advantage throughout the test," said Dr Rahman. "This might mean that sexual orientation affects the speed at which you acquire spatial information, but not necessarily your eventual memory for that spatial information."

The findings were published today in the journal Hippocampus. Dr Rahman was not convinced they related to car parking or map reading, but expected them to have a major bearing on navigational ability. "Perhaps if women are slower at parking it might be relevant, but parking is not an exacting spatial task," he said. "Driving in a novel environment which is poor in cues is where these differences are likely to show up most. Women are going to take a lot longer to reach their destination, making more errors, taking wrong turns etc. They need more rich local landmarks. "Men are good at using distal, or geometrical cues, to decide if they're going north or south, for instance. They have a better basic sense of direction, but they can use local land marks as well."

The similar way gay and straight men performed in the RAM test showed that sexual variation in spatial ability was not straightforward, said Dr Rahman. "Gay people appear to show a 'mosaic' of performance, parts of which are male-like and other parts of which are female-like," he added.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For times when is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here.


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