Monday, June 12, 2017

Trump accused of racism by body of UN racists

President Donald Trump is the target of a new report by the United Nations’ Human Rights Council accusing him of “hateful and xenophobic rhetoric.”

The report comes after UNHRC observers visited the US to monitor the 2016 election.  Their conclusion, made without providing any evidence, was that the US was a deeply racist and hateful nation.

“Racism and the exclusion, persecution and marginalization that come with it, affect the environment for exercising association and assembly rights,” the report states, claiming Trump-led racism poisoned the election results.

The report provides no evidence for its assertions.

The report is also written by some of the world’s most racist nations.  Of the 47 seats on the UNHRC, many are held by the world’s worst dictatorship. Communist China, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Bolivia, Cuba are all dictatorships with seats on the UNHCR.

Despite the claims of American racism in the report, blacks are routinely discriminated against and mistreated by report member Cuba.

“On an island that is around two-thirds black and mixed race, according to a 2007 study by the Cuban economist Esteban Morales Domínguez, the civil and public leadership is about 70 percent white. He also found that most scientists, technicians and university professors, up to 80 percent in some fields, were white,” The New York Times reported in 2016.

“There is definitely still racism here,” baker Alberto González, told the Times. “I see it often, in how people look at me and treat me.”

Fellow UNHRC member Qatar also maintains official racist policies, Georgetown University’s Ben Johnson notes:

(I)t is almost impossible for foreigners to become Qatari citizens: after living here for decades, even white collar workers will never be legally or culturally accepted as Qataris. Qatar has also embarked on a program it calls “Qatarization,” which is designed to increase the percentage of Qatari nationals in the workplace by giving citizens priority over foreigners for job openings (interestingly, the program even has an official website—in both English and Arabic).

At the social level, cultural insecurities often manifest themselves in discrimination against the largest group of foreigners in Qatar—South Asians. Although this discrimination begins with the unskilled laborers, in practice highly skilled Asian workers experience discrimination as well, regardless of their professional or socioeconomic status.

In the UNHCR members want to find racism, they don’t even need to leave their desks.


Trump’s Paid Parental Leave Entitlement: Bad for the Economy, Bad for Women

In a recent interview on the new Trump budget, I hit on some of my usual topics such as growth, real-world fiscal numbers, tax  reform, fake budget cuts, entitlement reform, and my Golden Rule.

But I want to call attention to the part of the discussion that started a bit before the one-minute mark. This is the point where I expressed concern about Donald Trump’s proposed parental leave entitlement.

I’ve written about Trump’s childcare scheme, but that’s a different intervention than what we’re talking about today.

Government-mandated paid parental leave is just as misguided childcare subsidies. It may even be worse. Let’s look at some details.

The Wall Street Journal is unimpressed by Trump’s plan to expand the welfare state.

    Mr. Trump’s budget would require states to provide six weeks of paid family leave for new mothers and fathers, as well as adoptive parents. States would have “broad latitude to design and finance” the benefit, which would be delivered through unemployment insurance. States would be forced to work out how much to pay parents, whether to ban a beneficiary from working during the leave, and dozens of other details. The budget says the program will cost the feds $25 billion. The cost is offset in theory by reducing waste and abuse in unemployment insurance. The left is naturally panning the plan as stingy. …Once an entitlement is codified it expands.

Proponents note that underwriting the benefit requires only a tiny increase in taxes, or some other levy on businesses. But wait until Democrats double or triple the duration of the leave, which they will do as soon as they are in power. The idea that Republicans can propose a cost-effective entitlement is delusional… The left chants that every industrialized country in the world offers some form of paid family leave—even Oman!—but one reason European countries have inflexible labor markets and higher unemployment is because they make hiring more expensive.

The final sentence is the key.

Why on earth should the United States mimic the policies of nations that have less growth, more unemployment, and lower per-capita economic output?

And James Pethokoukis of the American Enterprise Institute agrees that if Republicans start the program, Democrats will expand it. But his citation of some academic research is the best part of his article.

    …how could the left not be secretly thrilled? Even if Trump’s bare-bones plan doesn’t become law, it sets a sort of precedent for Republicans supporting paid leave. And should the plan pass Congress and get signed by Trump, it establishes a program that future Democratic presidents and lawmakers can expand. …A 2017 study, by UC Santa Barbara economist Jenna Stearns, of maternity leave policy in Great Britain found that…there’s a tradeoff: Expanding job protected leave benefits led to “fewer women holding management positions and other jobs with the potential for promotion.”

Likewise, a 2013 study by Cornell University’s Francine Blau and Lawrence Kahn found family-friendly policies…also “leave women less likely to be considered for high-level positions. One’s evaluation of such policies must take both of these effects into account.” …In a classic 1983 paper on mandated benefits like paid leave, former Obama economist Lawrence Summers explained businesses would offset higher benefits with lower pay or hiring workers with lower potential benefit costs. You know, tradeoffs.


And this is why even a columnist for the New York Times has pointed out that self-styled feminist policies actually are bad for women.

The best policies for women are the same as the best policies for men (not to mention all the other genders that now exist). Simply stated, allow free markets and small government.

P.S. Government-mandated paid parental leave is a bad idea even when the idea is pushed by people at right-wing think tanks.


After London: let’s start talking about Islam

Protecting Islam from ridicule has had disastrous consequences.

Another month, another terror attack. Britain’s third in three months. This time the targets were Saturday-night revellers in London Bridge and Borough. Mown and stabbed for the crime of having fun, of being free. And already we are seeing the same craven, baleful response that follows every act of Islamist terror. ‘Watch out for an Islamophobic backlash’, aloof observers say, their minds always more agitated by the thought of stupid white people saying something rude about Islam than by acts of Islamist mass murder. ‘Don’t say anything bad about this wonderful religion or its adherents’, they tell us. This is a really bad response, because it is becoming increasingly clear that one of the major problems we face today is not that our society is too mean about Islam, but that it flatters Islam too much.

Islam now enjoys the same kind of moral protection from blasphemy and ridicule that Christianity once (wrongly) enjoyed. All last week, for example, I received furious emails and messages in response to two articles I wrote about the Manchester attack, telling me I was wrong to defend the use of the phrase ‘Islamist extremism’. That term has an Islamophobic bent to it, we’re told. It demeans Islam and its adherents by suggesting they have something to do with terrorism. You should just say ‘extremism’, not ‘Islamist extremism’. Don’t ever name the extremism, don’t label it, because you might hurt people’s feelings.

This is why our political leaders so rarely use the terms Islamism, radical Islam and Islamic terrorism: because they want to avoid offending Islam and also because they don’t want to stir up what they view as the public’s bovine, hateful prejudices. This censorious privilege is not extended to any other religion. We do not avoid saying ‘Catholic paedophiles’ about the priests who molested children for fear of tarring all Catholics with the same brush. We happily say ‘Christian fundamentalist’ about people who are Christian and fundamentalist. We use ‘Buddhist extremists’ to describe violent Buddhist groups in Myanmar. And yet Islam is ringfenced from tough discussion; phrases which at some level include the word ‘Islam’ are tightly policed; criticism of Islam is deemed a mental illness: Islamophobia.

This is incredibly dangerous. This censorious flattery of Islam is, in my view, a key contributor to the violence we have seen in recent years. Because when you constantly tell people that any mockery of their religion is tantamount to a crime, is vile and racist and unacceptable, you actively invite them, encourage them in fact, to become intolerant. You license their intolerance. You inflame their violent contempt for anyone who questions their dogmas. You provide a moral justification for their desire to punish those who insult their religion.

From the 7/7 bombers to the Charlie Hebdo murderers to Salman Abedi in Manchester, all these terrorists — these Islamist terrorists — expressed an extreme victim mentality and openly said they were punishing us for our disrespect of Islam, mistreatment of Muslims, ridiculing of Muhammad, and so on. The Islamophobia industry and politicians who constantly say ‘Islam is great, leave Islam alone!’ green-light this violence; they furnish it with a moral case and moral zeal.

There are no quick fixes to the terror problem, but here is a good start: oppose all censorship and all clampdowns on offence and blasphemy and so-called ‘Islamophobia’. Every single one of them, whether they’re legal, in the form of hate-speech laws, or informal, in the guise of Twittermobs against those who criticise Islam or self-censoring politicians being literally struck dumb on TV because they cannot muster up the word ‘Is… is… is… Islamist’. This will at least start the process of unravelling the Islamist victimhood narrative and its bizarre, violent and officially sanctioned sensitivity to criticism. And if anyone says this is ‘punching down’ — another intellectual weapon in the armoury of Islam-protecting censorship, designed to demonise awkward questions about certain religious and ideological beliefs — tell them that it is in fact punching up: up against a political class and legal system that has foolishly and outrageously sought to police criticism of a religion.

What this means is that the supposedly correct response to terror attacks — ‘Don’t criticise Islam’ — is absolutely the worst response. It pours petrol on fire. It inflames the violent religious narcissism and self-pity that motors many of these attacks. Making criticism of Islam as commonplace and acceptable as criticism of any other religion or ideology is the first step to denuding Islamist terrorism of its warped moral programme, and it will also demonstrate that our society prizes freedom of speech over everything else — including your religion, your God, your prophets, your holy book and your feelings.


Australian conservative politcian slams Islamic Council's push for taxpayer-funded 'safe spaces' for young Muslims to make 'frank' comments

Pauline Hanson has rubbished suggestions from the Islamic Council of Victoria that Muslim youths should be provided with taxpayer-funded 'safe spaces' to make 'inflammatory' and 'frank' comments out of the public eye.

The One Nation leader said she was 'totally against' the proposal, which is an effort by Muslim leaders to tackle the growing problem of radicalised youth in Australia.

'What a load of rubbish! How much more money have we got to put in to this to make them feel good about themselves?,' she told Samantha Armytage on Sunrise.

Ms Hanson went on to say the federal government needed to ban Muslims from 'certain extremist countries' coming into Australia.

'The ones who are coming back from overseas fighting shouldn't be allowed back in the country. I don't want these people in this country,' she said. 'They are spreading their hate and their evil towards others that are possibly turning to radicalisation.'

In a submission to a parliamentary inquiry into freedom of religion, Islamic leaders have demanded government funding for anti-terrorism and anti-extremism should be used to create the religious sanctuaries.

'To create safe spaces urgently needed by Muslim youth to meet and talk about a range of issues in emotional terms, where they can be frank and even use words, which in a public space would sound inflammatory,' the submission reads.

'That they cannot express irony, humour, anger or joy in words and facial expressions that would make them a target for 'surveillance' is a cause for despondency leading to mental health issues among many.'

The Council also points out the inability for Muslim adherents to safely practice their religion without feeling subject to surveillance is a 'human rights issue'.

'There are human rights issues which restrict Muslim's in Victoria and nationally to enjoy the same human right to freedom of religion or belief that other Australians currently enjoy,' it said.

The submission calls on the government to advocate higher research and programs to address the rise of other non-Muslim extremism in Australia such as far-right groups.

Ms Hanson rejected claims from the Islamic Council that Melbourne siege gunman Yacqub Khayres could have been influenced by drugs and mental health problems rather than extremist Muslim ideologies.

'Let's deal with the whole facts. A lot of people in our society have mental issues and are on drugs,' she said. 'In towns like this, I am travelling out to the bush again, they have a big problem with ice and drugs and depression throughout our country. People do not talk to violence and murder other people.

Following Melbourne's deadly siege on Monday which killed one innocent man, Victoria's state government will discuss radical new anti-terrorism measures, the Herald Sun reports.

The ice-addicted gunman was shot dead along with innocent receptionist Kai Hao, 36, in a bloody siege for which the militant group claimed responsibility.

Despite police labelling it a suspected terror attack, the state's peak Muslim body warned against inflaming tensions and branded the gunman 'confused.' The council said while there are debates over the gunman's motive, it was clear had a long criminal record and a trail of violence.

'We understand that the police are investigating this as a potential terrorist attack but note that the perpetrator himself appeared to be confused as to who he was acting on behalf, claiming allegiance to both ISIS and AlQaeda, known enemies.'

'Whether this act was inspired by an evil warped ideology or was in fact the actions of a deranged violent individual, this does not change the reality that a horrendous crime was committed in which an innocent person was killed, a woman was held hostage, and police officers' lives were put at risk.'

They warned against provoking tensions with the Muslim and Somali communities, which could promote further attacks.

'What we must avoid is sensationalising or somehow attributing unwarranted significance to these criminals because it exacerbates prevailing fears and tensions and potentially encourages copycat behaviour.'

'We would also like to express our support to the Somali community who will be unfairly vilified because of the actions of this one man. They have made, and continue to make, an invaluable contribution to Victorian society.'

A review into Khayre's prison and parole management has been ordered as the government revealed up to 22 Victorians a year are undergoing anti-radicalisation programs.

The state's Corrections Minister Gayle Tierney repeatedly refused to answer questions in parliament about Khayre because she has ordered the review.

But she did reveal the Islamic Council of Victoria is currently working with up to 22 people undertaking anti-radicalisation programs.

'In the last state budget there was an allocation of $6.385 million over four years for anti-radicalisation programs, ' Ms Tierney told the Legislative Council on Tuesday.

'The Islamic Council of Victoria is contracted to deliver the program and is currently working with up to 22 prisoners and people in the community each year.'



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, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here


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