Wednesday, August 19, 2009

British indifference to real crime again

But deny the Holocaust and you are in BIG trouble -- four years and six months in jail worth of trouble in fact

A mother has written to magistrates in disgust after four teenagers who viciously attacked her son walked free from court. Mary Jordan has demanded an explanation after the gang admitted to the unprovoked assault. Oliver Jordan, 18, was taken to hospital after the group of 16-year olds, who had been drinking, battered him to the ground, kicking and punching him as he fell.

Each of them was given a sixmonth referral order, which means they will have to appear before a youth offender panel which will suggest ways in which they can ‘repair the harm caused’. But Mrs Jordan, a driver for a private car-hire company, dismissed the punishment and has condemned the sentence in a personal letter to the magistrates in which she accused them of giving a green light to street violence. The 43-year-old, who also has a 14-year-old daughter, wrote: ‘Did my son need to be brain damaged or dead before you would have given him justice? ‘This is not justice for my son, his girlfriend, my family and her family – you have let us all down. ‘I disagree with what you have done and would like an explanation as to how and why you reached this verdict.’

Recalling the night of the attack in Gloucester, she went on: ‘I shall never forget arriving at the hospital, waiting till the ambulance crew brought my son in … covered in blood, his face all swollen and battered. He may be a teenager to you but he was still my baby. ‘It was the first time in my life that I felt defenceless. I wanted to take the pain away but I couldn’t. ‘His little sister broke down and cried when she saw her brother covered in blood. I stayed with him and watched him start to lose consciousness.’ She added: ‘Opposite my son was a teenager who was being treated for a sprained ankle and swollen hand – well, guess what, he was one of my son’s attackers.’

Gloucester Youth Court heard last week that Mr Jordan and his girlfriend were followed along a street before they were surrounded by a group of youths, some of whom were on bikes and a moped. Prosecuting solicitor Katherine Jones said: ‘The youth on the moped said, “Who’s going to do it?” 'Matters rapidly deteriorated and they rained kicks and punches on Mr Jordan, who fell to the ground and curled up into the foetal position. ‘His girlfriend tried to pull them off, but she was dragged away and thrown to the ground. 'Fortunately residents heard the commotion and came out and one of them phoned the police.’

She added: ‘Mr Jordan had a suspected broken nose, multiple cuts and bruises, a split lip and swollen jaw, while his girlfriend suffered bruising and swelling to the eye, nose and knee.’

Dealing with the four youths, the chairman of the court bench Sue Alexander told them: ‘This attack by a pack fuelled by drink was horrific, shocking and vicious. ‘It must have been a terrifying experience for the victim.’ She went on: ‘There is a stark choice between custody and a referral order – and I can say that you are not going to prison today.’

Mrs Jordan, whose husband Tim, 45, is a factory worker, also asked in her letter: ‘So what do they have to do before they go to prison?’ She went on to explain that her son, who has recently left school, and his girlfriend have suffered flashbacks since the attack in February and now drive everywhere because they are too nervous to walk around.

The parents of the four defendants, who admitted charges of assault causing actual bodily harm and affray, said they were ashamed by their sons’ actions. The solicitor for one of the youths, said: ‘He deeply regrets this. When drink goes in, sense goes out. He let himself and his parents down.’


The apparent Leftist derangement over George Bush was mainly just a tactic -- and now the tactic has new targets

There is an extensive body of writing from both sides of the political aisle that has analyzed the extraordinary depths of hatred leveled at former President George W. Bush.

His birth into a wealthy and politically connected family is where a lot of the animus starts. His rejection of his Connecticut roots and adoption of a rugged Texan persona naturally riled his birth-constituency. His disjointed speaking style also alienated many others - especially those who covered him in the Northeastern media. Naturally, some of his initiatives were controversial. His allies say he didn't do enough.

But all presidents make mistakes, pursue unpopular ideas, possess off-putting personality traits and don't do enough to appeal to their core supporters. Something far more insidious was at work in the hatred of our most recent former president.

Now that Mr. Bush is quietly going about his retirement, this strain of rage - the GWB43 virus - has spread like wildfire, finding unsuspecting targets, each granting us greater perspective into what not long ago seemed like a mysterious phenomenon isolated only on our 43rd president. The first person to catch the virus was Sarah Palin, whose family also was infected, including, unforgivably, her children.

Then it was Joe the Plumber, for asking a question.

Next were the Mormons.

Then it was Rush Limbaugh - who hit back.

Next, tax-day "tea party" attendees were "tea bagged."

Then there was a beauty contestant.

And a Cambridge cop, too.

And now we have town-hall "mobs."

Smile ... you've been "community organized."

When put on the media stage, these individuals and groups have been isolated for destruction for standing in the way of a resurgent modern progressive movement and for challenging its charismatic once-in-a-lifetime standard-bearer, Barack Obama. This is their time, we've been told. And no one is going to stand in the way.

The origins of manufactured "politics of personal destruction" is Saul Alinsky, the mentor of a young Hillary Rodham, who wrote her 92-page Wellesley College senior thesis on the late Chicago-based "progressive" street agitator titled, "There Is Only the Fight." Mr. Obama and his Fighting Illini, Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod, have perfected Mr. Alinsky's techniques as laid out in his guidebook to political warfare, "Rules for Radicals." In plain language, we see how normal, decent and even private citizens become nationally vilified symbols overnight - all in the pursuit of progressive political victory.

"Rule 12: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it and polarize it. Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions. (This is cruel, but very effective. Direct, personalized criticism and ridicule works.)"

With the complicity of the mainstream media and abetted by George Soros' money and netroots nation, Mr. Bush never stood a chance. But the more the virus spreads, the more we study it and, perhaps, find the cure. The repetitive use of the same technique against anyone who would dare stand up and oppose the progressive movement and especially its leader has exposed the game and rendered its tactics less effective.

In fact, one could make the argument that the Republican Party, usually slow on the uptake, has finally figured it out. There are no major Republican targets out there opposing Mr. Obama and his aggressive agenda. The conservative movement appears leaderless, but perhaps for the best. Maybe that is the strategy: Standing back and letting the Obama machine flail in its pursuit of its next victim. A grass-roots movement of average Americans has stood up, making it extremely difficult to isolate and demonize an individual.

Mr. Alinsky noted in "Rule 12" that it is difficult to go after "institutions." And attacking "tea baggers" and "mobs" has only created more resistance and drawn attention to the left's limited playbook. Even Americans expressing their constitutionally protected right to free speech are open game.

Now that many people are Googling the Alinsky rule book and catching up with the way Chicago thugs play their political games, Mr. Obama and the Fighting Illini are going to be forced to create new rules - or double down on the old ones. Worse yet, as his approval ratings descend rapidly - Rasmussen has him at 47 percent, the lowest of his presidency - angry citizens may be turning the tables on him, using Mr. Alinsky against him.

They won't have to "freeze" and "personalize" him either. He's got 3 1/2 years left with the klieg lights focused on him. And if Mr. Obama can't get the economy rolling and continues to demonize everyday folks for his failures, he will be further isolated from sympathy and even ridiculed.

Yes, it's cruel - and effective. Ask Mr. Bush, the magnanimous guy who gave the new president a heartfelt hug the day he took office. He knows. Boy, I wish I could see his famous smirk right about now. I always loved how much they hated that.


Australian lawyers who got holocaust denier locked up try to justify their attack on free speech

Freedom of speech should not be freedom to vilify, argue Steven Lewis and Peter Wertheim below -- without offering any evidence that such vilification leads to any physical harm to those vilified. What they offer is just a series of shallow and unsubstantited assertions. Can they name even ONE person who was moved by Mr. Toben's rants to attack a Jew? To show how shallow their argument is, contemplate this: I do my best to vilify the Queensland police, because I believe I have good grounds for doing so. Should I be prevented from doing that? It might also be noted that the lawyers concerned do a fair job of vilifying Mr. Toben. Why is that OK if vilification is of itself such a bad thing? I think that their argument reduces to nothing more than an aways-easy attack on unpopular speech. Wiser heads in the U.S. judiciary have of course ruled that holocaust denial is protected free speech, obnoxious though it may be

In a legal first, Australia's most notorious Holocaust denier, Fredrik Toben, has been jailed for three months following the failure of his appeal this week for contempt of court arising from breaches of Australia's anti-vilification laws.

The sentence follows seven years of Toben repeatedly ignoring court orders requiring him to remove racist material from his Adelaide Institute website.

His journey to prison began in 2002 when the Federal Court found Toben's website breached the racial-hatred provisions of the Racial Discrimination Act.

According to the court, material on the site suggested the Holocaust did not occur, that there were no gas chambers at Auschwitz, that Jewish people who believed in the Holocaust were of limited intelligence and that they have exaggerated the number of Jews killed during World War II to profit from what he described as "a Holocaust myth".

But it's not these claims, no matter how offensive they may be, that have landed Toben with a prison term. There are no criminal sanctions under the act.

Toben is going to jail for contempt of court. He was ordered to remove the offending material and he didn't. He promised to remove the material and then reneged. He apologised to the court but then recanted. True to form, he all but invited the court to lock him up.

Toben referred to judges as "the Jewdiciary" and, again true to form, accused them of bias without a shred of evidence. We all have to obey the law and court orders. There are no special rules and privileges for the Tobens of this world.

While the decision to jail Toben will be welcomed by most fair-minded people, questions will rightly be asked about free speech and turning Toben into a poster-boy for racist fringe groups.

The suggestion that Toben, and others like him, should be able to say whatever they like regardless of how hurtful, inaccurate and ugly it might be, goes to the heart of our dearly held belief in freedom of expression.

But does this sort of commentary, publicly attacking people because of their race, ethnicity or religion, really constitute community debate? Is it an exercise of free speech, or an abuse of it? When Jews in Australia are targeted, these questions take on a very sharp edge. Australia has the world's second highest percentage of Holocaust survivors after Israel.

Like all freedoms, the proper limits of free speech are exceeded when it is about causing harm. The basic question is whether vilification is sufficiently harmful to justify an intrusion by the law into this fundamental personal freedom.

Whether it's Jews, Muslims, homosexuals or women, the public vilification of entire groups of people can only undermine, and ultimately destroy, their sense of security, the birthright of every Australian.

Being constantly vilified as a member of a group, instead of being judged on one's individual merits, compromises one's social relationships. One is put on the defensive with workmates, friends, neighbours and anyone else with whom one interacts. Such is the power of modern communications. And vilification is the invariable precursor to violence against members of the targeted group.

The Racial Discrimination Act protects innocent people from this sort of harm.

But the harm has to be proved in court according to objective criteria. The act makes it clear that it is not unlawful to publish material in good faith as part of a genuine academic, artistic or scientific debate, whether anyone takes offence or not. What's clear in the Toben case, and what the court found, was that his material is not part of a genuine debate about history or politics, as he claimed. The real thrust of his material is to use the internet to stoke up hatred against Jews as a group.

Some argue that if Toben had been left alone to spruik from his Adelaide-based hate website he would have remained an obscure failed school teacher talking to like-minded nutters. Not so. Toben is a determined publicity hound. In 1999 he travelled to his native Germany and was convicted in Mannheim of incitement to racial hatred and Holocaust denial. In Germany, for obvious reasons, trying to whitewash the Nazis' crimes is a criminal offence. Toben spent seven months in jail.

In 2006, Toben went to Tehran for an anti-Semitic hatefest, hobnobbing in the media limelight with a cavalcade of some of the world's most notorious racists including Iranian President Ahmadinejad and US Ku Klux Klansman David Duke.

The publicity around the legal proceedings against Toben in Australia has been a mere zephyr in his international media whirl.

For reasons that defy conventional analysis, Toben has spent most of his adult life vainly working to rehabilitate the universally disgraced reputation of Nazi Germany. And for Toben, "the Jews" are the principal obstacle.

If Toben and his patsies confined their activities to ranting among themselves in private, few would care. But using our cherished freedoms and easy access to the mass media as a way of striking at the security of an entire group of people on racial grounds tears at the fabric of our community and ultimately threatens those very freedoms.

History has vividly demonstrated that the relentless infusion of racism into public discourse is like drip-feeding poison into the democratic body politic. And in the words of American philosopher George Santayana: "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it."


Frontal attack on young families by Australia's Leftist Federal government

In the name of "safety", childcare is to be made far too dear for most families. This will lead to a lot of "backyard" operations or very impoverished families. Karl Marx thought that the family was a major obstacle to his revolution. He still has many disciples

QUEENSLAND parents could soon be paying $5000 more a year for child care, under a Federal Government plan to lift preschool education standards. The proposed changes will be rolled out in all Australian childcare centres in a bid to tighten up the industry by improving staff-to-child ratios and qualifications. But industry experts say the cost to parents is likely to be "substantial" and make it even harder to find childcare places. A government report by consultants Access Economics shows how, under one scenario, childcare costs could jump by $125 per child per week if all changes were implemented.

Childcare Queensland president Gwynn Bridge said initial costings suggested most childcare centres in Queensland would likely have to raise annual fees by $5000 a child. She said changes to staff-to-child ratios would force some centres to take even fewer children. "We are extremely concerned about this plan, as the incurring costs to families is looking to be substantial," Ms Bridge said. "The repercussions for Queensland are terrible, and we are in a unique and uncomfortable position compared with other states. "Childcare places for babies are already under high demand, and the proposed changes mean we will be able to take on even fewer. "We are advocating on behalf of families to ensure we get the best outcome for our Queensland families, who are already doing it tough."

The plan will be implemented by July 1 next year, following consultation with the industry, and be fully in place by January 2012. Childcare Queensland will make submissions to the Government by August 31.

Under the planned changes, one carer would be responsible for five children aged between 2½ and 3, rather than the current eight children, and one carer would look after 11 children aged between 3 and 5, rather than the current one staff to 12 children ratio. The current Queensland baby ratio is one to four aged up to 15 months, but this would change to one to three for up to 2 years. Childcare workers would also be required to have one staff member with a four-year teaching qualification at a tertiary level.

Child Care National Association president Chris Buck said families had been kept in the dark about the extra costs involved. "If perceived quality goes up, so do the costs," he said. "The risk being run by the Government is that fewer families will be able to afford child care."



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 readers in China or for times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.


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