Tuesday, August 04, 2015
Soaring number of sickening attacks against British Jews
All done by those wicked "Rightists" of course! It wouldn't be the work of peace-loving Muslims would it? We are not told below -- funnily enough -- but I think we can guess
The number of anti-Semitic hate crimes reported to police has soared in parts of the UK, police figures have shown.
A number of the largest forces in the country are recording rising numbers of offences against Jewish people and their property.
In London the total more than doubled in a year, while there were also increases in Greater Manchester, Merseyside, West Midlands and West Yorkshire. The crimes reported included assault, harassment, arson and criminal damage.
Separate figures released today show there was a 53 per cent increase in the number of anti-Semitic incidents recorded by the Community Security Trust (CST) in the first half of this year compared to the same period of last year.
The CST, a charity that monitors anti-Semitism, recorded 473 incidents from January to June including 44 violent assaults, 35 instances of damage to Jewish property and 88 cases of abusive threats on social media.
The findings come at a time of heightened alert among Jewish communities after terrorist attacks in Europe.
A kosher supermarket was targeted in the Paris attacks in January and the following month a Jewish man was killed near a synagogue in Copenhagen.
The CST said its analysis suggests the main explanation for the rise is a greater willingness to report incidents. Chief executive David Delew said: ‘The terrorist attacks on European Jews earlier this year, following the high levels of anti-Semitism in 2014, were a difficult and unsettling experience for our Jewish community.
‘We welcome the apparent increase in reporting of anti-Semitic incidents, but regret the concern and anxiety about anti-Semitism that this reflects.’
Home Secretary Theresa May said anti-Semitism has ‘absolutely no place in Britain, adding: ‘Those who seek to spread anti-Semitic hatred should know that the Government will act against those who seek to divide our country and sow discord.’
Police figures revealed a substantial rise in the number of incidents reported in London, where a large proportion of Britain’s Jews live.
Figures supplied by the Metropolitan Police under Freedom of Information laws showed the force recorded a total of 193 anti-Semitic crimes in 2013/14.
The number jumped by 138 per cent in 2014/15 to 459. Of the total offences in the most recent financial year, 53 – or more than one in ten – involved violence. There were 276 incidents of harassment, while criminal damage accounted for 115 anti-Semitic crimes.
A similar pattern was also seen in Greater Manchester, where there is a large Jewish community. The force said there were a total of 172 anti-Semitic offences recorded in 2014/15 – more than double the 82 recorded in the previous year. Over the two years, there were 21 cases of religiously aggravated common assault.
Rising numbers of offences were not observed across all forces. Several recorded small numbers of offences in both years, with the figures showing a minor rise or fall, or in some cases, remaining steady.
But Communities Minister Baroness Williams said: ‘Anti-Semitism and hate crimes of any sort are not only vile, wrong and totally unacceptable in our society, but they are also an affront to the British values that we hold dear.
‘Whilst one anti-Semitic incident is one too many, it is positive that members of the Jewish community now feel more able to speak out against these pernicious crimes knowing that their Government will act decisively to protect them.’
Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan, of Greater Manchester Police, said: ‘The international picture of increasing hostility and tension towards the Jewish community is no doubt having an influence in the UK.’
White people: a bad racial group?
The MTV documentary White People makes sweeping racial generalisations
White People, a documentary by Jose Antonio Vargas, was aired on MTV on 22 July and has caused much controversy online. The documentary portrays itself as a race-driven discussion, focusing on the education of white people on issues of race.
What really ensues is a long, unproductive white-guilt fostering session, in which Vargas asks whites to acknowledge their privilege and accept the wrongdoings of their ancestors. Vargas even retweeted a description of his documentary that said its purpose was to ‘make white people very uncomfortable’. He’s clearly pretty happy with that take.
Critics argue that the documentary pushes an ‘us against them’ mentality. I can see why they would think that. The film encourages the idea that being white automatically puts you at an advantage over all other groups. At one point in the documentary, Vargas sounds almost excited when he presents statistics showing that America’s white population is declining.
Vargas strategically placed himself in environments where he would face little to no opposition to his narrative. The small sample group he brought in to be interviewed clearly felt they were in a biased setting, one which made them feel intimidated, hesitant to speak their minds. (I’d feel intimidated, too, if I were in a situation where I could be unfairly depicted as a racist in front of hundreds of thousands of people.) He also only cites studies that focus on the lack of white participation in the discussion of race. This sort of bias is not uncommon in documentaries. But that doesn’t make this approach okay or productive - certainly not when dealing with a delicate issue like race.
Deep down, we all know that not all whites are privileged; not all Hispanics are illegal immigrants; not all Asians are good at maths. Regardless of how acceptable or even statistically accurate a stereotype might be, to apply it to every individual in a group is harmful and ignorant - including when that group is ‘white people’.
Even if a person seems to fit into a racial stereotype, we still don’t know the full story about that individual. A rich white boy who appears to have all the privilege in the world might be facing frequent abuse. A young Asian girl who is good at maths could spend twice as much time studying as her peers do. An African-American man may be falsely accused and wrongly convicted for a crime. So we must even question supposed ‘confirmations’ of stereotypes, because every individual’s story is a complex one.
White People does not take this individualist approach, which is necessary for any nuanced, successful discussion of race; instead it makes sweeping generalisations, about all whites being privileged, through using comments and statistics that simply do not apply in every situation or across the board.
Vargas keeps discussing the need for a conversation about race, despite the fact that race is already being discussed. What is really needed is a conversation about racial issues or divisions that doesn’t start with generalisations about, or the targeting of, one particular group.
The new, sweeping racialisation of groups and individuals runs counter to Martin Luther King’s dream for his children, and for the rest of us - that they would ‘not be judged by the colour of their skin, but by the content of their character’.
This dream doesn’t say we should be completely ignorant of historical context, physical differences or statistical facts. However, it does suggest the ultimate judgement should be based on an individual’s character and story, not on generalisations about his or her race, or the wrongs committed by his or her ancestors, or on any physical differences.
If Vargas wanted to start a genuine discussion about race, rather than simply producing an edgy film to get clicks, he would surely have made a film on the human race and its profound complexities - not a documentary about black people, native people, Asian people, or White People.
Barack Obama’s Antisemitic Rant on the Iran Deal
President Barack Obama is using anti-Jewish language to sell the Iran deal
Some critics made that claim a week ago, when Obama complained about “the money” and “the lobbyists” on the other side of the debate over the Iran nuclear deal. This week, Obama proved it.
On Thursday, Obama led a conference call with left-wing activists in which he repeatedly railed against his political opponents by using the old canard of rich Jews using their money to exert control.
Accusing critics of the deal of being “opposed to any deal with Iran”–i.e. of advocating war–Obama railed against “well-financed” lobbyists, as well as the “big check writers to political campaigns,” and “billionaires who happily finance super-PACs.” He complained about “$20 million” being spent on ads against the deal—a subtle reference to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC–whose support he had repeatedly courted when running for office).
Some of Obama’s references were thinly-veiled attacks on specific (Jewish) individuals—columnist Bill Kristol, for example, the Weekly Standard publisher and former New York Times resident conservative who served in the George H.W. Bush administration, and also helps run the Emergency Committee for Israel, which opposes the Iran deal; or billionaire Sheldon Adelson, who is a prodigious Republican benefactor, super PAC donor, and well-known hawk on Israel issues.
On the call, Obama twice accused his opponents of being the same people “responsible for us getting into the Iraq war.“ That sweeping, and largely false, characterization of the opponents of the Iran deal repeats the sensational accusations of The Israel Lobby, a widely discredited 2007 book that accused a group of pro-Israel, and largely Jewish, individuals and organizations of pushing the U.S. into war with Iraq, and seeking to drag America into a new war with Iran.
Obama’s deliberate, and jarring, choice of words clearly worried even some sympathetic Jews.
Nathan Guttman, of the left-leaning Forward, which covers Jewish issues, wrote of the call that “what many liberals hear as a powerful rallying call to avoid entering another military quagmire in the Middle East could seem tone deaf to some in the organized Jewish community.” Obama’s claims about the Iraq War, he added, were “likely to make many in the community feel uneasy.”
Of course, there is a large, well-funded effort to oppose to the Iran deal. There is also—as the president well knows—a large, well-funded effort to support it. The radical group J Street is spending millions on its ads; other groups have already used Hollywood stars in theirs.
There are also liberal Jews, like Times columnist Tom Friedman, who abuse the term “Israel lobby”—knowing it is a vicious slur. Presumably, that is why Obama thinks he can get away with it.
Yet a Republican who did the same thing would be criticized as antisemitic.
As the Republican Jewish Coalition noted Thursday, in a press statement objecting to Obama’s remarks, “Jewish groups—including Jewish Republicans—came down hard on the first President Bush for similar remarks.”
Indeed, Democrats spent this week bashing former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee for saying that the president “will take the Israelis and march them to the door of the oven.”
Obama himself criticized Huckabee for those remarks from abroad. Wolf Blitzer of CNN said that Huckabee had “essentially, essentially” likened Obama to Adolf Hitler. He pressed every Republican who appeared on his show to slam Huckabee.
Yet if Obama and his supporters are so concerned about comments that portray the president as an antisemite, he should stop trying to act like one. At the very least, it shows he knows he cannot defend the Iran deal on its merits.
On the call, Obama’s case for the agreement was weak.
He claimed it has the most rigorous inspections regime ever—ignoring the fact that unlike the inspections under the New START treaty, the Iran deal excludes Americans from participating. He said that while it was possible military force might be needed if Iran raced to the bomb after the deal expired in 15 years, the U.S. would be better prepared for war then—ignoring the likelihood that Iran would be, as well.
With his peculiar mix of arrogance and self-pity, Obama told the conference call that while he had a “bully pulpit,” the fight was up to them: ”I can’t carry it by myself,” he said.
He urged them to become informed about the Iran deal. But the more Americans know about the deal, the more they reject it. So Obama is, once again, demonizing his opponents for political gain.
In his heart, Obama is probably not an antisemite. That is all the more reason to deplore what he is doing.
Vigilante king and his Uber-style law enforcement squad
MEET Sidney Torres IV, the suave New Orleans businessman who is taking policing the city’s crime-ridden streets into his own hands.
The wealthy real estate developer was sick of the painfully slow police response to widespread gunfights, theft and drug offences, so he created an Uber-style app to clean up his neighbourhood.
He bought a fleet of black Polaris Rangers, fitted with blue flashing lights and iPads to deal with requests, and hired off-duty police officers as his team. The former waste disposal mogul, who managed a network of garbage trucks, told The New York Times: “I’m handling crime the same way I did trash.”
Torres’s foray into cleaning up New Orleans began when his home in the affluent French Quarter was burgled, just weeks before the bar next door was held up at gunpoint.
The self-assured 39-year-old responded with a $100,000 TV ad demanding action to from the mayor, Mitch Landrieu, to make residents feel safe again — featuring locals discussing their fears for the city. When the mayor challenged Torres to put his money where his mouth was, the entrepreneur came up with his daring solution.
He spent $US380,000 setting up his app in the French Quarter, and within six weeks, almost 10,000 people had downloaded it — twice the population of the area.
Users can describe an unfolding crime and the mobile interface will mark the incident as a red dot, and Torres’s private patrol squad, the French Quarter Task Force, as a green arrow. The aim is to always have three officers circling the neighbourhood of just one square mile, so they can respond within two minutes, where the police can take about 30.
The project is endorsed by the New Orleans Police Department, which has shrunk by about 500 officers since Hurricane Katrina, and many in the city welcome this injection of private cash.
The head of the Louisiana State Police even invited Torres to sit in on an undercover sting targeting human traffickers at a French Quarter hotel.
But other locals are concerned about the privatisation of policing, and fear that putting so much power in the hands of a man once known as “Trashanova” could stoke tensions.
Some locals have doubts about putting law enforcement in the hands of this forceful perso
Some locals have doubts about putting law enforcement in the hands of this forceful personality. Source: Supplied
Torres recently worked with the city on moving on the “transient people” who loiter about the streets, usually not committing crimes but causing something of a nuisance for authorities. Where the city had delayed because of concerns around these people’s dogs, and their issues with diabetes, Torres called an animal protection service and made sure the medicine was available in the city’s prisons.
Many were up in arms about this ruthless destruction of the characters who some see as the beating heart of New Orleans, but Torres believes this bullish approach is vital. “The government loves its rules, so many pointless rules that just slow everything down,” he told The New York Times.
Torres, who compares himself to Bruce Wayne, has now hired retired rocket scientist Bob Simms to act as the Robin to his Batman, overseeing the day-to-day running of the service. He says neighbouring states have already expressed interest in the app, but he makes it clear that he is still very much in control.
“If someone doesn’t show up, I can see it on my phone: Why’s the truck still at the station?” he said. The businessman buys gift certificates to a steak house for officers who have done a good job, something his partners in City Hall worried might create a divide.
Whatever people think, the enterprising plan has been a success, with assaults and armed robberies dropping by 30 per cent in the two months to May, and Torres’s force assisting on state arrests.
The New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau have agreed to finance the $US900,000-a-year scheme for the next five years. The mayor has hailed the project as part of a wider success story in privatising areas including sewage and recreation programs — saying that the rest of the nation needs to follow suit.
Torres’s disregard for authority and carelessness around sensitive information have raised eyebrows, but there’s no stopping this juggernaut.
Sidney Torres is leading the charge to turn cities into slick, efficient, clean machines.
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, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and DISSECTING LEFTISM. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.