Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Feminists are obnoxious bigots and men have a raw deal: British Conservative
Men are increasingly the victims of ‘obnoxious bigotry’ by women and should start ‘burning their briefs’ in protest, according to a rising Tory star.
Dominic Raab, a new MP tipped for high office, said men were getting a ‘raw deal’ from the cradle to the grave following years of anti-discrimination legislation favouring women. He pointed out women in their 20s are now paid more than their male peers, who work longer hours, retire later and die earlier.
Mr Raab, the 37-year-old MP for Esher and Walton in Surrey and a former chief of staff to David Davis, called for an end to what he called feminist bigotry. He said men were blamed by society for the banking crisis, discriminated against by parental leave rules which favour women who want time off and ignored by the courts when relationships break down and they seek custody of their children.
Mr Raab suggested men should rise up against what he called the ‘equality bandwagon’, which has pitted them against women since the 1960s, likening the cause to that of the Suffragettes. ‘Maybe it’s time men started burning their briefs, to put to an end once and for all what Emmeline Pankhurst used to call “the double standard of sex morals”, the MP wrote in an article for the politicshome.com website.
Mr Raab welcomed the Government’s plans to make the system of parental leave more flexible, by allowing mothers and fathers to divide up time off evenly. He said that sort of policy was more relevant than Labour’s ‘outdated and obsolete equality and diversity agenda’.
‘Take the gender pay gap. The fascinating thing is just how sexist its champions have become,’ he said. ‘It is almost taboo for a man to question the assertion that the rapidly dwindling pay gap is the result of discrimination, rather than genuine choice,’ he said.
‘Yet, research shows the pay gap has halved since the 1970s. Office for National Statistics data in December showed that, since 1997, the difference between full-time median earnings has fallen from 17 per cent to 10 per cent – and the shrinkage is accelerating. 'According to research for the Institute for Economic Affairs, women in their 20s earn one per cent more than men, single women a shade more.
'Gay men earn more than straight men, lesbian women more than heterosexual women. Does that sound like a society riddled with discrimination?
‘Meanwhile, pay is just one of the terms of employment. Men work longer hours, enjoy their jobs less, commute further and are more likely to get the sack.’
Mr Raab said Britain now had some of the toughest anti-discrimination laws in the world, but was ‘blind to some of the most flagrant discrimination – against men’. ‘From the cradle to the grave, men are getting a raw deal. Men work longer hours, die earlier, but retire later than women. That won’t be fixed for another seven years.
You can’t have it both ways – either you believe in equality or you don't'
Mr Raab – whose wife Erika works in marketing for a major IT firm – said there was also more subtle sexism. He said: ‘One Financial Times commentator recently complained that: “High-flying women are programmed to go for high-flying men. Most men aren’t attracted to women who are more successful than they are”. ‘Can you imagine the outrage if such trite generalisations were made about women, or other minorities? Feminists are now amongst the most obnoxious bigots.’
But Harriet Harman, Labour deputy leader and former equality minister, said: ‘Women still earn 20 per cent less than men, domestic violence claims the lives of women every week and women bear the brunt of poverty in the developing world.’
Labour MP Kate Green, former chairman of the London Child Poverty Commission, said: ‘This is exactly the kind of attitude that shows the Tories are out of touch.’
260,000 British children growing up in homes where no one has ever worked
More than 260,000 under-16s are growing up in homes where no one has ever worked, according to figures released by the Department of Work and Pensions today. There are another 600,000 between the ages of 16 and 24 who have never worked since leaving school or further education.
Ministers last night described the 860,000 people under the age of 24 stuck in a culture of worklessness as a ‘ticking time bomb’.
Employment Minister Chris Grayling will seek to tackle the benefit dependency today by unveiling plans to dramatically expand the work experience available to the young unemployed. At present young jobseekers are able to take part in two weeks of job-related work experience before losing their benefits. But the coalition will extend that to eight weeks, enabling them to beef up their CVs and enhance their chances of getting a job.
Under the new initiative, young people between 18 and 21 will be matched by Jobcentre Plus with employers looking for people to do work experience. Leading employers like Homebase, Hilton Hotels, McDonalds, De Vere Hotels, Carillion, Coyle Personnel and Punch Taverns are cooperating with the scheme.
Unemployment figures published last week showed the number of people under 25 out of work rise by 32,000 to 951,000 in the three months to November.
Labour leader Ed Miliband has been highly critical of the government’s decision to end the Future Jobs Fund as part of the coalition’s programme of spending cuts.
But Mr Grayling pointed the finger of blame at Labour for creating a generation of young people with no direct experience of working, either for themselves or by watching their parents form the habit of going to work. He said: ‘Today’s figures on children growing up in workless households highlight once again the shocking betrayal of this country’s young people by the last Labour government.
‘Billions were squandered on the New Deal and Future Jobs Fund which too often merely put the young in short term, public sector jobs that were unsustainable. 'Their failure to get young people into work will cost us dear in the long run, as the next generation have to shoulder the burden not only of the enormous debt left by Labour, but also lack the confidence to reach their potential.
‘Our new work experience scheme will give young people the chance to get valuable experience in a business for up to two months, which will make a real difference to their confidence, their employability and their prospects. ‘This government is making the changes that will give young people access to jobs and opportunities that can help them towards a brighter future.’
A recent survey from High Flyers showed that 60 per cent of employers would only take on graduates who had some experience of the workplace, underlining the value employers place in it.
Critics will point out that the work experience scheme will not guarantee anyone a paid job.
But it has won the backing of Hayley Taylor, star of Channel 4’s Fairy Jobmother series. She said: ‘It’s hard to get a job with no experience, and you can’t get experience without a job. That’s why this work experience scheme is a really good idea.’
David Frost of the British Chambers of Commerce said: ‘Employers will be key to getting young people into work. This programme is a way of not only providing quality work experience but also of introducing individuals to the modern world of work.’
Never Mind the Bomb, Beware of Islamofascism
The National Intelligence Estimate regarding Iran’s bomb project had stirred a great deal of controversy. Some say that there is now reason to abandon the war posturing and start negotiating a live-and-let-live deal with the Mullahs, since they have “abandoned” their quest for the bomb. At least that is what the not-so-reliable report seems to imply. Others, with good reason, remain skeptical of both the validity of the report and the ever-cheating, conniving Mullahs.
This controversy aside, the irrefutable fact is that the Jihadist belief of Islam itself poses existential danger to the world. Beliefs energize and direct actions. Beliefs are as indispensable as the air we breathe. Even an atheist is a believer, with his own system of disbelief. Not believing in anything is mental breakdown. There is something about humans that demands a belief. A belief can be anything or a combination of many things; it can be well-defined and even rigid, or a loosely put together hodge-podge with considerable latitude. It can be magnificent or the most abhorrent. But, it has to be there. Beliefs steer our vehicles in the journey of life.
Forming a religious belief is primarily an emotional undertaking. Therefore, reason must work extremely hard to override the emotion-based belief. Yet, it can be done.
There is nothing inherently wrong with religion. Religion can be a tremendous force for the good. However when religion - this feeling-based belief - is filled with superstition, intolerance and hatred, then the observer of that religion embodies those qualities and becomes a menace to the self and to others. Feelings energize actions. Destructive feelings energize destructive actions.
Muslims living in theocratic states, in particular, are victims of their religious brains. Their religious brains are indoctrinated from the moment of birth by an extensive ruthless in-power cadre of self-serving clergy who are intent on maintaining their stranglehold on the rank and file of the faithful who are their very source of support and livelihood.
The mullahs and imams, as well as parents and others, envelop the receptive mind, feed it their dogma, and shield it from information that may undermine or falsify their version of belief.
Islamofascism is a pandemic fiercely-promoted belief system that enjoys a huge advantage over the competition. Some of the reasons for Islamofascism’s longevity and success are listed below.
* It is a crusading belief. Early on, it forced itself by the sword and as time went on it employed any and all schemes to promote itself while destroying the competition.
* It mandates prolific procreation on the faithful. It allows a man to have as many as four wives concurrently, in part to cater to the lust of the men and in part to produce more children who would, in turn, swell its ranks.
* It gets the first crack at imprinting its dogma on the blank slate of the child’s mind from the very first day of birth. The imprinting is usually deeply engrained and makes it difficult for the person to fully erase it, or replace it altogether. Even when successful, an ex-Muslim, or a “cultural” Muslim retains on his slate some traces of the early imprints. It may take more than one generation to fully erase the Islamic imprints.
* It does not allow anyone the choice of leaving its fold at the penalty of death for apostasy.
* It holds that the earth is Allah’s and no non-Muslim is entitled to the same rights and privileges reserved for its own members. Even the “people of the book,” Jews and Christians, must pay the religious tax of jazyyeh (or jizya) to be allowed a subservient place under the Islamic rule.
* It campaigns ceaselessly at propagating itself by any and all means, while banning other religions from so doing. Islamic proselytizers invade the lands of the unbelievers and work relentlessly to convert others while non-Muslim faiths are even barred from having a place of worship in lands such as the cradle of Islam, Saudi Arabia.
* It is anathema to many of civilized humanity’s values, such as those enshrined in the first amendment of the Universal Declaration of the Human Rights.
* It is a caste system where the male believer enjoys valued privileges denied to all minorities, women and slaves. This discriminatory provision guarantees generation after generation of avowed in-power adherents who would shirk at nothing to maintain their privileged status granted to them by Allah.
* It is a powerful carrot-and-stick system of belief. It maintains its stranglehold on its obedient followers by promising them unimaginable compensations, if not in this world, then assuredly in the next, while anyone who strays from the mandated path is threatened with a raft of unending horrid torture from a vengeful Allah.
* The extortion-high oil prices that oil-rich Muslims extract from the addicted and oblivious non-Muslim world fuel the Islamic jihad throughout the world. Muslim kings, emirs and sheiks enjoy opulent life and aim to have it the same in Allah’s next world by funneling a portion of their huge parasitic income to madrassas (religious indoctrinating schools), mosques, storefront recruiting centers and charitable outlets that would enlist and hold masses of choiceless and fanatical believers. By funding these activities in the service of the jihadist Islam, these in-power Muslims believe that they can have it both ways: a material existence of great enjoyment here and an eternal life of hedonism in Allah’s promised paradise. In the bargain, these ringleader menaces of the world, aim to assuage their guilt feeling resulting from oppressing the impoverished exploited masses of Muslims with the delusion they are furthering Allah’s cause.
The danger of the bomb in the hands of the Mullahs has not disappeared, in spite of what the mainstream media and the Useful Idiots claim by misrepresenting the NIE report. The NIE guesses that the Mullahs seem to have ceased the construction of the warhead in 2003. How can the CIA be sure that this is the case and that the Mullahs are not secretly constructing it? Yet the IRI, by its own admission, is on a crash program to develop long range missiles and operates cascades of centrifuges to make enriched weapons-grade uranium needed for the bomb.
The handwriting is on the wall. Huge numbers of Muslims, overwhelmingly poor, under-educated, and deeply indoctrinated in the jihadist belief are invading the world. It is this human bomb that must be defused as well as keeping a vigilant eye on the other one that Iran’s Mullahs are relentlessly pursuing.
In short, never mind the nuclear bomb, if you like. But, we must do all we can to erase the suicide-homicide belief-vest that Islamofascists straps on their masses of poor, undereducated, and deluded followers.
“Think globally, act locally,” is the rallying cry of the environmentalist movement. The same exhortation even more urgently applies to the fight against the deadly spread and menace of Islamofascism.
The state against blacks
by Jason Riley
'Sometimes I sarcastically, perhaps cynically, say that I'm glad that I received virtually all of my education before it became fashionable for white people to like black people," writes Walter Williams in his new autobiography, "Up from the Projects." "By that I mean that I encountered back then a more honest assessment of my strengths and weaknesses. Professors didn't hesitate to criticize me—sometimes to the point of saying, 'That's nonsense.'"
Mr. Williams, an economist at George Mason University, is contrasting being black and poor in the 1940s and '50s with today's experience. It's a theme that permeates his short, bracing volume of reminiscence, and it's where we began our conversation on a recent morning at his home in suburban Philadelphia.
"We lived in the Richard Allen housing projects" in Philadelphia, says Mr. Williams. "My father deserted us when I was three and my sister was two. But we were the only kids who didn't have a mother and father in the house. These were poor black people and a few whites living in a housing project, and it was unusual not to have a mother and father in the house. Today, in the same projects, it would be rare to have a mother and father in the house."
Even in the antebellum era, when slaves often weren't permitted to wed, most black children lived with a biological mother and father. During Reconstruction and up until the 1940s, 75% to 85% of black children lived in two-parent families. Today, more than 70% of black children are born to single women. "The welfare state has done to black Americans what slavery couldn't do, what Jim Crow couldn't do, what the harshest racism couldn't do," Mr. Williams says. "And that is to destroy the black family."
Government programs and regulations are favorite butts of the professor, who is best known today for his weekly column—started in 1977 and now appearing in more than 140 newspapers—and for his stints guest-hosting Rush Limbaugh's popular radio program.
Libertarianism is currently in vogue, thanks to the election of a statist president and the subsequent rise of the tea party movement. But Walter Williams was a libertarian before it was cool. And like other prominent right-of-center blacks—Clarence Thomas, Thomas Sowell, Shelby Steele—his intellectual odyssey began on the political left.
"I was more than anything a radical," says Mr. Williams. "I was more sympathetic to Malcolm X than Martin Luther King because Malcolm X was more of a radical who was willing to confront discrimination in ways that I thought it should be confronted, including perhaps the use of violence.
"But I really just wanted to be left alone. I thought some laws, like minimum-wage laws, helped poor people and poor black people and protected workers from exploitation. I thought they were a good thing until I was pressed by professors to look at the evidence."
During his junior year at California State College in Los Angeles, Mr. Williams switched his major from sociology to economics after reading W.E.B. Du Bois's "Black Reconstruction in America," a Marxist take on the South's transformation after the Civil War that will never be confused with "The Wealth of Nations." Even so, the book taught him that "black people cannot make great progress until they understand the economic system, until they know something about economics."
He earned his doctorate in 1972 from UCLA, which had one of the top economics departments in the country, and he says he "probably became a libertarian through exposure to tough-mined professors"—James Buchanan, Armen Alchian, Milton Friedman —"who encouraged me to think with my brain instead of my heart. I learned that you have to evaluate the effects of public policy as opposed to intentions."
Mr. Williams distinguished himself in the mid-1970s through his research on the effects of the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931—which got the government involved in setting wage levels—and on the impact of minimum-wage law on youth and minority unemployment. He concluded that minimum wages caused high rates of teenage unemployment, particularly among minority teenagers. His research also showed that Davis-Bacon, which requires high prevailing (read: union) wages on federally financed or assisted construction projects, was the product of lawmakers with explicitly racist motivations.
One of Congress's goals at the time was to stop black laborers from displacing whites by working for less money. Missouri Rep. John Cochran said that he had "received numerous complaints in recent months about Southern contractors employing low-paid colored mechanics." And Alabama Rep. Clayton Allgood fretted about contractors with "cheap colored labor . . . of the sort that is in competition with white labor throughout the country."
Today just 17% of construction workers are unionized, but Democratic politicians, in deference to the AFL-CIO, have kept Davis-Bacon in place to protect them. Because most black construction workers aren't union members, however, the law has the effect of freezing them out of jobs. It also serves to significantly increase the costs of government projects, since there are fewer contractors to bid on them than there would be without Davis-Bacon.
Analysis of this issue launched Mr. Williams's career as a public intellectual, and in 1982 he published his first book, "The State Against Blacks," arguing that laws regulating economic activity are far larger impediments to black progress than racial bigotry and discrimination. Nearly 30 years later, he stands by that premise.
"Racial discrimination is not the problem of black people that it used to be" in his youth, says Mr. Williams. "Today I doubt you could find any significant problem that blacks face that is caused by racial discrimination. The 70% illegitimacy rate is a devastating problem, but it doesn't have a damn thing to do with racism. The fact that in some areas black people are huddled in their homes at night, sometimes serving meals on the floor so they don't get hit by a stray bullet—that's not because the Klan is riding through the neighborhood."
Over the decades, Mr. Williams's writings have sought to highlight "the moral superiority of individual liberty and free markets," as he puts it. "I try to write so that economics is understandable to the ordinary person without an economics background." His motivation? "I think it's important for people to understand the ideas of scarcity and decision-making in everyday life so that they won't be ripped off by politicians," he says. "Politicians exploit economic illiteracy."
Which is why, he adds, the tea party movement is a positive development in our politics and long overdue. "For the first time in my lifetime—and I'm approaching 75 years old—you hear Americans debating about the U.S. Constitution," he says. "You hear them saying 'This is unconstitutional' or 'We need limits on government'—things that I haven't heard before. I've been arguing them for years, but now there's widespread acceptance of the idea that we need to limit the government."
Still, he's concerned about how far the country has strayed from the type of limited government envisioned by the Founding Fathers. "In 1794, Congress appropriated $15,000 to help some French refugees," he says. In objection, "James Madison stood on the House floor and said he could not take to lay his finger on that article in the Constitution that allows Congress to take the money of its constituents for the purposes of benevolence. Well, if you look at the federal budget today, two-thirds to three-quarters of it is for the purposes of benevolence."
Mr. Williams says that "if there is anything good to be said about the Democratic White House and the [previous] Congress and their brazen attempt to take over the economy and control our lives, it's that the tea party movement has come out of it. But we have gone so far from the basic constitutional principles that made us a great country that it's a question of whether we can get back."
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.
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