Sunday, September 11, 2011
Why the Peaceful Majority is Irrelevant
The article below is from a few years back but I think it is worth repeating on today's anniversary
I used to know a man whose family were German aristocracy prior to World War II. They owned a number of large industries and estates. I asked him how many German people were true Nazis, and the answer he gave has stuck with me and guided my attitude toward fanaticism ever since.
“Very few people were true Nazis,” he said, “but many enjoyed the return of German pride, and many more were too busy to care. I was one of those who just thought the Nazis were a bunch of fools. So, the majority just sat back and let it all happen. Then, before we knew it, they owned us, and we had lost control, and the end of the world had come. My family lost everything. I ended up in a concentration camp and the Allies destroyed my factories.”
We are told again and again by experts and talking heads that Islam is the religion of peace, and that the vast majority of Muslims just want to live in peace. Although this unquantified assertion may be true, it is entirely irrelevant. It is meaningless fluff, meant to make us feel better, and meant to somehow diminish the specter of fanatics rampaging across the globe in the name of Islam.
The fact is that the fanatics rule Islam at this moment in history. It is the fanatics who march. It is the fanatics who wage any one of 50 shooting wars world wide. It is the fanatics who systematically slaughter Christian or tribal groups throughout Africa and are gradually taking over the entire continent in an Islamic wave. It is the fanatics who bomb, behead, murder, or execute honor killings. It is the fanatics who take over mosque after mosque. It is the fanatics who zealously spread the stoning and hanging of rape victims and homosexuals. The hard, quantifiable fact is that the “peaceful majority” is the “silent majority,” and it is cowed and extraneous.
Communist Russia was comprised of Russians who just wanted to live in peace, yet the Russian Communists were responsible for the murder of about 20 million people. The peaceful majority were irrelevant. China’s huge population was peaceful as well, but Chinese Communists managed to kill a staggering 70 million people. The average Japanese individual prior to World War II was not a war-mongering sadist. Yet, Japan murdered and slaughtered its way across Southeast Asia in an orgy of killing that included the systematic murder of 12 million Chinese civilians - most killed by sword, shovel and bayonet. And who can forget Rwanda, which collapsed into butchery? Could it not be said that the majority of Rwandans were “peace loving”?
History lessons are often incredibly simple and blunt; yet, for all our powers of reason, we often miss the most basic and uncomplicated of points. Peace-loving Muslims have been made irrelevant by the fanatics. Peace-loving Muslims have been made irrelevant by their silence. Peace-loving Muslims will become our enemy if they don’t speak up, because, like my friend from Germany, they will awaken one day and find that the fanatics own them, and the end of their world will have begun.
Peace-loving Germans, Japanese, Chinese, Russians, Rwandans, Bosnians, Afghanis, Iraqis, Palestinians, Somalis, Nigerians, Algerians and many others, have died because the peaceful majority did not speak up until it was too late. As for us, watching it all unfold, we must pay attention to the only group that counts: the fanatics who threaten our way of life.
Pope: Riots show UK's lost moral sense of right and wrong
The Pope yesterday blamed the riots that swept Britain last month on a loss of awareness of what is right and wrong.
Benedict XVI said that ‘moral relativism’ had permeated British society to such a degree that many people no longer held shared values and were confused about what constituted wrongful actions.
And he urged the Government to remedy the crisis by spreading wealth – and ensuring its policies were underpinned by an objective belief in what is right.
The Pope told Nigel Baker, Britain’s ambassador to the Holy See, that it would be wise for the Government ‘to employ policies that are based on enduring values that cannot be simply expressed in legal terms’. He went on: ‘This is especially important in the light of events in England this summer.
‘When policies do not presume or promote objective values, the resulting moral relativism tends instead to produce frustration, despair, selfishness and a disregard for the life and liberty of others.’
He added: ‘Policy-makers are therefore right to look urgently for ways to uphold excellence in education, to promote social opportunity and economic mobility, and to examine ways to favour long-term employment.’
The remarks of the 84-year-old Pope were the first time he has commented on the riots that began in Tottenham, North London, in August before engulfing other parts of the capital and spreading to other British cities.
He spoke as a funeral was held in Tottenham for Mark Duggan, the 29-year-old armed man whose shooting by police on August 4 led to the wave of rioting and looting that lasted for four days. The unrest claimed five lives and has resulted in more than 2,000 arrests.
He made his comments as he was formally introduced to Mr Baker, recently appointed Britain’s ambassador to the Vatican City. Mr Baker, 45, fills a position left vacant by the departure last year of Francis Campbell, the first Catholic ambassador to the Holy See since the Reformation.
A non-Catholic, Mr Baker was previously British ambassador to Bolivia and worked briefly with David Cameron in the Conservative Research Department in the 1980s before he joined the Foreign Office. Mr Baker is familiar with Italy and speaks Italian, after living and studying in Verona and Naples.
Benedict XVI been a harsh critic of ‘relativism’ for a number of years. On the day before he was elected as Pope in 2005, he declared that Western societies were becoming so oblivious to objective standards of morality that they risked becoming engulfed by a ‘dictatorship of relativism’.
The theory of relativism holds that there can be no objective standard on which to base morality.
A victory for civil liberties
Official photography phobia again
THE FIRST Circuit Court of Appeals, which sits in Boston, struck an important blow for civil liberties late last month when it ruled that a man arrested for taping Boston police on the Common in 2007 could go forward with his lawsuit against the city. The standard for suing police is rightfully high. A plaintiff can sue only for violations of “clearly established rights.’’ But that is exactly what happened when police arrested Simon Glik for taping them.
Glik was walking on the Common when he saw a group of officers arresting a man with what seemed like excessive force. Glik pulled out his cellphone and started recording video and audio from about 10 feet away. The police responded by arresting Glik, charging him with wiretapping, and confiscating his phone. Although Glik was soon freed and the charges dropped, he sued the city over his unlawful arrest. The Police Department defended itself, not by claiming that the arrest was legal, but by claiming that the right to tape police is not “clearly established’’ by the First Amendment.
The Court of Appeals for the First Circuit wisely disagreed. It declared that the “filming of government officials engaged in their duties in a public place’’ came within the core protections of the First Amendment, with voices included. The court found this to be clearly established and deeply rooted in precedent.
Nonetheless, there are still Americans arrested every year for recording the police in states spanning the country from Texas to Maryland. The increased use of smartphones means that police are far more likely to be recorded in the line of duty than in the past. This may be understandably unnerving, but officers need to learn to accept the scrutiny rather than lash out with unlawful arrests.
The right to hold public officials to account, from the president down to the local beat cop, is fundamental to a free and open society. It may now be exercised with new technology, but the principle is as old as our nation itself.
Fraud probe councillor wins six-figure payout after claiming he was deselected because he was Asian
A former Labour councillor who was deselected following allegations of vote-rigging has won a six-figure payout after claiming he was deselected by the party because he is Asian.
The Labour party has been ordered by an employment tribunal to pay Raghib Ahsan £123,000 following a 13-year legal battle, in which his costs were met by taxpayers.
The 65-year-old was dropped as Labour's candidate for the Sparkhill ward in Birmingham city council in 1997 following claims - strongly denied - that he was helping Asian families jump the queue for housing repair grants in return for votes.
It is believed to be the first time a councillor has been awarded compensation by a tribunal after being dropped by a political party.
Mr Ahsan's case was initially backed by the Commission for Racial Equality, a publicly-funded race watchdog which has since been abolished.
It is estimated to have cost the taxpayer hundreds of thousands of pounds in court costs.
Two-thirds of the compensation payout is based on allowances which Mr Ahsan would have been able to claim from the council had he continued in office.
Mr Ahsan, who has since faced separate allegations of "violence, intimidation and serious membership abuse amounting to fraud", said he was "delighted" with his win.
Speaking from his £500,000 house in Handsworth, Birmingham, the father-of-two said: "It is the end of a very long struggle that took over my life for many years but I am very pleased that I have been awarded compensation. "All of the allegations against me were unfounded and my deselection was entirely unjustified. Now I feel as though I have been vindicated – and I have the cheque to prove it."
However, John Spellar, Labour MP for Warley, called the payout "absurd". He said: "Mr Ahsan was a fairly controversial figure in the Labour Party. "He was involved in a long-running controversy that some felt damaged the image of the party locally. But there are political factions and battles in every political party. For a court to stick its nose in and get involved is absurd. "It demonstrates the sheer arrogance of the legal system."
Mr Ahsan first brought his claim for race discrimination in 1998 – a year after being deselected and replaced with a white candidate.
Labour argued he should not be allowed to bring a case as he was not an employee of the party, but in 1999 the tribunal ruled that the claim should be allowed to go ahead.
In a subsequent case, the Court of Appeal ruled that employment tribunals do not have jurisdiction to hear such claims - yet the tribunal in Mr Ahsan's case insisted its original decision to allow the claim to go ahead "remained binding, even though it had now been shown to be wrong".
Labour appealed the decision, first at the Court of Appeal, which ruled in its favour, and then at the House of Lords, which ruled in favour of Mr Ahsan – not because the tribunal had jurisdiction to hear his claim, but because the original decision could not be reversed.
His case was then sent back to the employment tribunal, where Mr Ahsan claimed £863,000 in compensation, a figure described as "methodologically flawed in various ways" by the tribunal.
It found that the Labour party had deselected him partly because it felt the electorate would identify a candidate from the Pakistani community with the housing grant scandal, and this amounted to racial discrimination.
In July, he was awarded £43,000 in compensation for "injury to feelings" and £80,000 for loss of earnings that he would have received in the form of allowances between 1998 and 2004 – the period during which, the tribunal decided, Mr Ahsan would have most likely been a councillor.
Mr Ahsan now works as a solicitor and has since represented three former Labour councillors who were sacked from the city council for their part in a postal vote fraud. He said: "I don't think Labour has learnt the lessons it should have learnt from the way I have been treated.
"I don't think the party is inherently racist but I think there are still some racist practises which persist and I hope it reassess its selection procedures. "I hope that one day I get an apology from them. But I don't think that will happen."
Mr Ahsan was president of the Birmingham Trades Council in the 1980s, and was elected as a councillor in 1991. He also worked at the taxpayer-funded Birmingham Employment Tribunal Unit helping workers bring claims against their employers.
In 1994, while campaigning to succeed Roy Hattersley as the party's parliamentary candidate for Birmingham Sparkbrook, he faced unproven allegations he had encouraged Asian families to apply for housing repair grants in return for their support at council elections. Mr Ahsan was deselected even though an internal investigation cleared him of any wrongdoing.
He was shortlisted as a candidate for the 2002 local elections but suspended after a rival accused him of "intimidating" party members. On one occasion, one of Mr Ahsan's supporters is said to have drawn a knife during a party meeting.
Mr Ahsan was again suspended pending investigation of what the party described as "allegations concerning violence, intimidation and serious membership abuse amounting to fraud".
He was once again cleared of any wrongdoing but he left Labour in 2003, partly because of his opposition to the Iraq War.
A spokesman for Labour said "We are clear that unfairly discriminating against someone because of their race is totally unacceptable, and this principle is embedded in our party rules."
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, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here or Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when blogger.com is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.