Sunday, November 22, 2015
Just Who Are These 'Gunmen'?
More tragedy struck Mali today, where reports indicate Confederate flag-wielding, Second Amendment-advocating white Christian bigots murdered several people and took scores more hostage. Not really, though that’s what the Leftmedia would like to say. Instead, it’s using a term that’s recycled when labeling people isn’t politically opportune. Take it away, Washington Post:
“Gunmen stormed a luxury hotel in Mali’s capital on Friday, killing at least three people and taking about 170 hostages in a city that serves as a logistics hub for French forces helping in a fight against Islamist insurgents.”
Scratch that. Let’s try again: “Islamic terrorists stormed a luxury hotel in Mali’s capital on Friday…” In the sixth graph — strategically placed, no doubt — the Post notes, “Malian army commander Modibo Nama Traore said at least 10 gunmen stormed the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ — ‘God is great’ in Arabic — then fired on guards and began rounding up hostages.” The Islamists are said to have freed hostages “able to recite a Muslim profession of faith.” Hey, who says terrorists aren’t charitable?
It’s no coincidence that the attack comes just days after Boko Haram is suspected of killing 32 in a Nigerian bombing and a slew of other high-casualty attacks. The Islamic State recently bombed a Russian plane carrying more than 200 before going on a rampage in Paris, killing another 129. While no group has claimed responsibility for the Mali tragedy, that’s really beside the point, because all Islamic extremists fall under the same umbrella. It’s an ideology that won’t be changed by regulating carbon emissions, which is what the Left says drives these jihadis to carry out these gruesome assaults. But they’ll gladly accept Western leaders using it as a scapegoat. What lunacy.
Victory over Britain's obnoxious secret courts: Doors to open to public for six month trial following string of controversial cases
Big surprise! It was a Leftist government that made them secret and a Conservative government that is opening them up
The country’s most secretive courts are to throw open their doors at last, judges declared yesterday.
The Court of Protection system, which decides on the fate of people too ill to make decisions for themselves, is to hold a six-month transparency trial. It means ordinary members of the public will be allowed into the hearings for the first time.
The move to end the secrecy surrounding the courts follows a series of controverial cases which in some cases have shielded wrongdoers from public exposure.
Among the worst examples was a case in 2013 in which a Court of Protection judge sentenced a woman to jail for contempt over her attempts to release her father from a care home without anyone being allowed to know her name or details of her offence.
Following the sentencing of the woman - later identified as Wanda Maddocks after the issue was highlighted by the Mail - senior judges ordered that no-one should ever be secretly imprisoned again.
The Court of Protection is a branch of the High Court set up by Labour’s controversial 2005 Mental Capacity Act. It makes decisions about the money, property, welfare and health of people who are incapacitated because of accident, illness or dementia. It also supervises the behaviour of ‘attorneys’ nominated to look after their money and welfare.
Its regulations, drawn up by Tony Blair’s Justice Secretary Lord Falconer, say that ‘the general rule is that a hearing is to be held in private.’
The secrecy meant journalists and members of the public were not allowed into hearings in Court of Protection cases in London and other major cities for several years after it began operations in 2007.
But a series of controversial cases - particularly the imprisonment of Wanda Maddocks - led to growing pressure for more openness.
Another judgment made in secret in 2012 ordered that pregnant Italian Alessandra Pacchieri should undergo a forced caesarian birth after she was put under state care following a breakdown at Stansted airport.
During the six-month transparency trial, Court of Protection hearings will be open to the public and the press, with some exceptions, such as the most serious medical cases. Judges will make anonymity orders to prevent publication of the names of incapacitated people and others they consider should be shielded from exposure.
A further long-mooted reform which will be tried out is changes to the way courts provide notice of the cases that are to be heard. During the trial, to begin in January, Court of Protection case lists will have short descriptions of what the argument is about so that journalists and members of the public can decide which are most worth attending.
The judge who is in charge of the Court of Protection, President of the Family Division Sir James Munby, has been trying to push through similar reforms in the Family Court, although so far without success. Family Court hearings, which in the past were entirely closed, have been open to journalists in recent years and judgments, with names of those involved removed, are now regularly published.
Sir James said yesterday: ‘It is logical to look at extending this greater transparency to the Court of Protection, provided the right balance can be struck to safeguard the privacy of people who lack capacity to make their own decisions.’
Mr Justice Charles, Vice President of the Court of Protection, said: ‘I support a move towards more public hearings to promote a wider understanding of the work and approach of the Court of Protection and the improvement of the performance of the Court and those who appear in it.
‘I am aware that others hold different views on whether hearings should generally be in public and hope that the pilot will provide useful evidence to weigh the rival arguments.’
The trial has required the approval of Justice Secretary Michael Gove, who has agreed that the regulations demanding secrecy, which are set by Parliament, will be eased for six months. Government approval for opening the Court of Protection was not granted under the Coalition that was in power until May.
Justice Minister Caroline Dinenage said: ‘I am pleased that we are piloting a new more open, more transparent Court of Protection. It is right the public and the media should be able to see justice being done in this important court, while protecting the privacy of the people involved.’
Yesterday’s move to open the court system and its workings to public and media scrutiny is a landmark in the battle to shine a light into not only of the Court of Protection but also of the Family Court network which remains largely closed to outside inspection.
Some judges, lawyers, social workers and professional expert witnesses have been fighting hard to prevent any exposure of evidence and decisions in the courts that settle divorce, child custody, care and adoption cases.
No, It Is Not Un-American to Prefer Christian Refugees to Muslim Refugees
By Ben Shapiro
On Friday, Muslim terrorists murdered 129 people in Paris. At least one of the ISIS perpetrators apparently entered Europe as a "refugee" from Syria — he was found with a refugee ID. ISIS has already claimed that they have infiltrated the Syrian refugee population to the tune of thousands of terrorists.
On Monday, President Obama announced that it would be purely un-American for Westerners to ban unvetted Muslim immigrants from the Middle East while allowing Christian targets of genocide to enter the West. He called such an idea "shameful," while passionately calling for Americans to "open our hearts" to more refugees. He praised bordering countries Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon for taking in hundreds of thousands of refugees; Obama said that showed their "belief in a common humanity."
He added, "And so we have to, each of us, do our part. And the United States has to step up and do its part. And when I hear folks say that, well, maybe we should just admit the Christians but not the Muslims ...That's not American. That's not who we are."
Every aspect of this little speech is wrong. Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon aren't taking in Muslim refugees out of some great commitment to common humanity. They're doing so because their other choice involves setting up fences and machine guns to stop the waves of refugees crossing their frontiers.
And as we know, Muslim countries have a rotten history of absorbing fellow members of their ummah: For 70 years, since the creation of the State of Israel, tens of thousands of Palestinian Arabs have lived in refugee camps located in Muslim lands. By contrast, the State of Israel has taken in every Jewish refugee seeking asylum, from Russian emigres to Moroccan immigrants, from Ethiopian refugees to Syrian expatriates.
And the West has good reason for skepticism toward Muslim refugees. While Muslim refugees who stay in the Middle East split evenly between males and females, the vast majority of refugees entering Europe are males of fighting age.
Muslim immigration has already led to massive increases in crime from France to Sweden, and cultural fragmentation from Great Britain to Austria. Terrorism is only the latest threat — and even that threat is obviously not exaggerated. Vetting refugees from Syria is nearly impossible given its status as a failed state. Vetting Muslim refugees is totally impossible given the fact that radical Muslims can easily masquerade as less-radical Muslims.
So why does President Obama, along with the global left, seek more Muslim immigration? Because President Obama does not believe that Islam, as a religious philosophy, presents any threat to the West. He believes that radical Islam doesn't exist. It's merely the hallmark of global poverty, probably affected negatively by climate change; if the West redistributed its wealth, ceased its "colonial" attitudes toward the Middle East, all would be well. The materialism of Marxism would win the day.
Never mind that this argument is entirely without evidence. Never mind that Muslims from Western nations have left wealth to join the impoverished ISIS fighters. Never mind that Osama Bin Laden himself was a wealthy man who lived in a cave to plan attacks against Westerners. Ideology matters, but to the self-centered Marxists of the global left, only their ideology matters: Everyone else has merely fallen into nasty ideas thanks to lack of resources.
And so we must give them our resources, endanger our own citizens. To do anything else would be un-American, according to the people whose idea of Americanism involves the rejection of the very ideas upon which America was founded.
Female cops win discrimination lawsuit after failing fitness exam; forces city to hire fat, weak, unfit slobs as police officers
It has become the new American method of getting out of something that you don't want to do: Go to court and have a judge side with you, even if it's a lousy thing to do to your community and, ultimately, to yourself.
That's what a group of female Colorado Springs police officers who wanted to opt out of their department's mandatory physical fitness testing did, and it worked – no more testing, meaning they are free to be as fat and unfit as they want, even to the detriment of their community and even if doing so will put them at risk of being physically injured or even killed by a stronger, more fit criminal.
The Daily Caller further reported that the dozen female officers sued their department, claiming that the required physical testing was somehow discriminatory. Of course, that was after they failed their annual tests. And now, following a ruling by a U.S. District Court, the women, all of whom are at least 40 years old, must be reinstated pending the final outcome of their case.
"I think the motivation in part is to get rid of these older women officers," the women's attorney, Ian Kalmanowitz, told KKTV News.
For his part, Colorado Springs Police Chief Pete Carey told CBS Denver that while he disagreed with the federal court's decision, he would nonetheless abide by it.
"I very firmly stand behind physical fitness tests for our officers," Carey said. "I think what I'm asking them to do is fair and my hope is a federal judge also agrees with this."
The department implemented new standards for physical fitness tests in late 2014. The new standards required officers to do 52 pushups in two minutes, 45 sit-ups in two minutes and two running tests – testing that is similar to what military personnel are annually required to take and pass in order to be eligible for retention within the ranks and promotion, among other benefits.
If an officer failed the Colorado Springs fitness test, the department would confiscate their uniforms and assign them to a desk job until such time as they were able to pass the test. They would be given six months to get in better shape and retest; a second failure would result in their termination from the department.
The DC reported that 25 of the 628 officers who took the test failed, including the 12 women who filed a lawsuit.
"The punitive consequences of failing to pass the [Physical Abilities Test] were unrelated to the announced purposes for administering the test and did not serve any important governmental objective," the legal complaint read.
"These officers have dedicated their lives to the police department, to the citizens of this community, and they've had that taken away from them," Kalmanowitz told KKTV News. "Not being allowed to wear a uniform, not being allowed to wear a badge, do their job."
In a statement, Carey laid out the importance of taking and passing a physical fitness test.
"For the past several years, CSPD has been involved in an extensive project to evaluate whether to adopt fitness standards for its sworn officers, validate what minimum fitness standards were job related, and develop and implement a Physical Abilities Test (PAT) that had been carefully formulated," he wrote. "CSPD was guided in this process by a consultant with expertise specific to physical abilities testing of police officers. To ensure officer success, CSPD called upon many resources in our community, including local healthcare and sports facilities, to provide personal training sessions and design exercise plans.
"As most of you are likely aware, the City is presently defending a federal lawsuit challenging the PAT. I continue to believe that mandatory physical fitness testing is the right thing to do for our community and our officers, and is a fair and appropriate minimum qualification to expect of those selected to protect and defend," Carey said.
Black Sheriff: Obama Has ‘Incited Americans Against Americans
America has “retrogressed” under President Barack Obama who has “incited Americans against Americans,” said Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr., who added that we can “survive” and “come out stronger” if we are willing to “fight back,” to “beat back these subversives who are trying to bring this Republic down.”
“The American ghetto is a mess, and I think it’s been exacerbated under this president, Barack Obama, who had a chance to come in and really make this country go to the next level of greatness -- it is a great country,” said Sheriff Clarke on The Blaze Radio Network on Nov. 14.
“Instead we have retrogressed under this president who has incited Americans against Americans,” he said. “The Republic is in crisis right now. Obama has pitted the poor against the rich. He’s pitted blacks against whites. He’s pitted illegal immigrants against American citizens. He’s pitted women against men.”
“It is a hot mess right now,” said the sheriff, who was awarded the Sheriff of the Award in 2013.
He continued, “But I’m one of those who believes that we come to define moments in our history. Those moments challenge us as a Republic. It happened during the Revolution, it happened during the Civil War, it happened during two world wars, it happened during Vietnam, the tumultuous ‘60s, it happened during the economic fallout, it’s happening again. But this is a resilient country. We’ll survive, we’ll come out stronger.”
“But we’ll only come out stronger if we’re willing to fight back, and beat back these subversives who are trying to bring this Republic down – and that is their goal, by the way,” said the sheriff.
David A. Clarke Jr., a Democrat, was elected to a 4-year term as the sheriff of Milwaukee County in 2002, and was re-elected in 2006, 2010 and 2014. In those elections he won, respectively, with 74%, 78%, 74%, and 79% of the vote.
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.