Friday, February 11, 2011

Hateful British police again

'Theft by finding': Woman who took potato waffles and pies thrown out by supermarket is handcuffed and charged with stealing

A woman was handcuffed and 'treated like a hardened criminal' after she helped herself to food worth £200 that had been thrown away by a Tesco store following a power cut. Dozens of people could not believe their luck after the outlet of the supermarket giant bagged up thousands of pounds of spoiled stock and left it out in the street.

Sasha Hall, 21, helped herself to potato waffles, pies and ham from outside the Tesco Express in Great Baddow, Essex. But she was stunned when police arrived at her home and arrested her for suspected 'theft by finding' and took her to the station in handcuffs.

'There was £3,000 worth of food going to waste on the street,' she told the Essex Chronicle. 'It had been thrown out, so I thought I could put it to better use. 'When the police came round I was so upset. I felt like a terrible criminal.'

The shop worker said the supermarket - which has the motto 'Every little helps' - should have been pleased that the food would be put to good use. She said: 'I would think the police have better things to be doing with their time than going after people who pick up potato waffles from the street. It's all been blown totally out of proportion.

'Tesco clearly did not want the food. They dumped it and rather than see it go to waste, I thought I could help feed me and my family for a week or two.'

Ms Hall, from Great Baddow, said she was shocked by the way the police dealt with the incident. 'They knocked at the door and said if I didn't open up they would use a battering ram,' she said. 'They handcuffed me and treated me like I was a hardened criminal and when we left they raided my house.

'I haven't got lots of money. I only make £600 a month. I'm on the brink of getting kicked out of my flat because I can't pay my arrears.'

A Tesco spokesman said: 'We are assisting the police with their inquiries. We seek to minimise waste in all our stores and where possible will seek to reuse and recycle it.'

Ms Hall, who works part-time at a rival supermarket in Chelmsford, is to appear in magistrates court on February 16 charged with theft by finding.


Couples turn to welfare fraud because we don't support marriage says prominent Tory as he attacks Britain's 'crazy' welfare system

Britain's ‘crazy’ welfare system is turning committed young couples into fraudsters because getting married or living together means they will take a drastic cut in income, Iain Duncan Smith warns today. So, instead of seeing their living standards plummet, many co-habiting couples on benefits are deceiving the State by pretending to live at different addresses.

Making the strongest defence of marriage from a senior government minister for more than a decade, he will launch a scathing attack on Labour for creating this ‘couple penalty’ in the welfare system. In remarks that set him dramatically at odds with Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, the Work and Pensions Secretary will insist the Coalition is determined to support marriage as ‘our most basic and successful institution’.

Mr Duncan Smith, who has long championed measures to support stable, two-parent families, will promise reforms to both benefits and tax in their favour.

Couples living together receive less than they would if they claimed separately, even accounting for the savings from sharing a home.

The result is that a majority of those who are out of work or in part-time work say they would be worse off living as a couple, with tens of thousands committing fraud by pretending they live apart.

While huge numbers of young people still aspire to get married, the hurdles placed in their way by the State risk the institution becoming the preserve of the better off, Mr Duncan Smith will say.

‘Not only that, but this crazy system can have the effect of pushing the most disadvantaged in society into the most destructive behaviour - namely criminal activity - as they attempt to get around the couple penalty by committing living together fraud,’ he will add. ‘There could scarcely be a more tragic state of affairs - government, in stifling people’s genuine aspirations to build positive and committed families, pushes them into criminal activity instead.

'Over the years the political establishment has frowned if a mainstream politician mentions marriage. The prevailing view was that to extol the virtues of this most fundamental institution somehow meant that you were going to stigmatise those who were not married. This is an absurd and damaging assumption.’

Mr Duncan Smith will commit the Government to tackling the couple penalty in benefit payments when it introduces its ‘universal credit’, a catch-all benefit replacing Labour’s complex range of handouts. The new system, he will say, will give ministers the scope to ‘make clear decisions over how they increase support for certain groups’.

In a speech marking the launch of Marriage Week, the Work and Pensions Secretary will also insist the Coalition will reward marriage through tax breaks – though the policy is on the back burner as the Government tackles the deficit and it is firmly opposed by the Lib Dems. ‘The Prime Minister continues to be committed to recognising marriage in the tax system,’ he will say.

Mr Duncan Smith will dismiss suggestions by Mr Clegg that supporting the institution is ‘finger wagging’. While ministers have no place moralising about people’s relationships, they must ensure a level playing field and consider the devastating impact of family breakdown, he will argue. The financial costs of family breakdowns are now estimated at between £20billion and £40billion each year, and there is clear evidence about the growing human cost too.

Those not growing up in a two-parent family are 75 per cent more likely to fail at school, 70 per cent more likely to become addicted to drugs and 50 per cent more likely to have an alcohol problem, Mr Duncan Smith will say.

Research by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, he will add, has found that children from separate families have a higher chance of living in poor housing and developing behavioural problems. ‘Young people are very clear that they want to marry… so if people from the youngest age aspire to make such a commitment in their lives, what stops them doing so?’ Mr Duncan Smith will ask.

‘Only those with money say that money has no bearing on whether people stay together. ‘Government cannot and should not try to lecture people or push them on this matter, but it is quite legitimate to ensure people have the opportunity to achieve their aspirations. ‘That is why we are investing £30million in relationship support and are committed to reducing the couple penalty.’

He will also suggest that marriage is the ‘best antidote’ to a culture of celebrity and self-obsession. ‘Today through our celebrity-focused media we give awards to so many different groups,’ he will say. ‘Yet the most basic institution, which nurtures each generation and from which so many of us draw our strength and purpose, goes unnoticed and unrewarded.’


Obama Administration hid the role of political correctness in spawning Fort Hood massacre

A Muslim soldier, Nidal Hasan, shot dead 12 soldiers and a civilian at Fort Hood, shouting the religious expression "Allahu Akbar." But the Obama Administration’s inquiry into the shootings falsely suggested Islamic extremism was not a factor in the shootings. Its report on the Fort Hood massacre did not even “mention the words ‘Islam’ and ‘Muslim’ once,” referring to the killer simply as the "alleged perpetrator." Instead, it claimed the tragedy resulted from “bureaucratic shortcomings” in the “sharing of information.”

But now Senators like Joe Lieberman and Susan Collins are taking issue with that whitewash report: “the federal government needs to drop the political correctness and call violent Islamic extremism what it is, according to a newly released report on the Fort Hood shooting by the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.”

Prior to the shooting, the killer had said that Muslims should rise up against the military, "repeatedly expressed sympathy for suicide bombers," was pleased by the terrorist murder of an army recruiter, and engaged in hate-speech against non-Muslims, publicly calling for the beheading or burning of non-Muslims, and talking "about how if you’re a nonbeliever the Koran says you should have your head cut off, you should have oil poured down your throat, you should be set on fire." “In addition, Hasan openly had suggested revenge as a defense for the 9/11 attacks, defended Osama bin Laden, and said his allegiance to his religion was greater than his allegiance to the constitution.”

But the military did nothing to remove him from a position where he could harm others. Although his views were common knowledge, "a fear of appearing discriminatory . . . kept officers from filing a formal written complaint," the Associated Press noted. Moreover, “a key official on a review committee reportedly asked how it might look to terminate a key resident who happened to be a Muslim," as NPR noted.

As military attorney Thomas Kenniff notes, there is a climate of “obsessive political correctness” right now in the military. As Major Shawn Keller pointed out, in a column entitled “An Officer’s Outrage Over Fort Hood.” “There was no shortage of warning signs that Hasan identified more with Islamic Jihadists than he did with the US Army. . .But just like September 11, those agencies and individuals charged with keeping America and Americans safe failed to connect the dots that would have saved lives. Jihadist rhetoric espoused by Hasan was categorically dismissed out of submissiveness to the concepts of tolerance and diversity. . . . the leaders in Hasan’s chain-of-command failed to act . . . out of fear of being labeled anti-Muslim and receiving a negative evaluation report.”

The military is not like the outside world. In the civilian world, hate speech and anti-American speech are protected by the First Amendment (under Supreme Court decisions like R.A.V. v. St. Paul, and court rulings like Dambrot v. Central Michigan University). But in the military, soldiers get punished for bigotry or disloyalty all the time – but not Nidal Hasan, who escaped any punishment due to obvious favoritism.

In court cases like Goldman v. Weinberger, the Supreme Court has said that soldiers have fewer First Amendment rights than civilians. The military cites this all the time when it wants to punish soldiers for politically-incorrect speech, like the soldier who was punished for a sexist insult about liberal Congresswoman Pat Schroeder (D-Colo.) in the aftermath of the Tailhook Scandal. But the military did not apply not enforce its policies against seditious speech or bigoted hate-speech to this soldier, because of political correctness. Instead, it kept him working with injured American veterans, a position for which he was manifestly unfit.

Obama could barely bring himself to mention the tragedy, much less express sympathy for the victims, in his initial remarks about it, in which he buried any expression of sympathy in the middle of a speech filled with "wildly disconnected" ramblings about an unrelated topic, starting with a "joking shout-out." Even for liberal journalists, President Obama's initial response to the tragedy was embarrassing. Even the liberal Boston Globe, which endorsed Obama in 2008, chided the President for a speech lacking in "empathy" for the victims. Despite the shooter's open hatred towards America, the military, and America's non-Muslim majority, Obama insisted that the shooter's motive for the killings was unknown.

The Obama Administration then did its best to hide the role of political correctness in spawning the tragedy by appointing two supporters of racial preferences in the military – former Army Secretary Togo West and Admiral Vernon Clark – to handle the federal inquiry into the tragedy. This was like appointing a fox to guard a henhouse. At the conclusion of their inquiry, West and Clark came out with a ridiculous report that did not even mention the word “Islam” or “Muslim,” much less address the Islamic extremism that motivated the shootings. Based on these men’s track record, the Obama Administration expected – and wanted – exactly such a whitewash report.

“Clark was such an enthusiast for 'diversity'” that “he redefined the Navy’s concept of special minorities to include religious (read Muslim)" groups, not just racial minorities. Similarly, “Togo West never saw an affirmative action policy or minority preference policy he didn’t like,” and was such a diversity zealot that he filed an amicus brief in an affirmative-action case that didn’t even involve the military, unsuccessfully urging the Supreme Court to uphold racial quotas in the public schools – something it instead struck down in Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District). Clark’s devotion to preferential treatment was reflected in his order “that the Navy increase the number of minority candidates for officer commissions by 25 per cent,” which “led to a double standard” at “places like the Naval Academy at Annapolis, where the entry standards for minorities are noticeably lower than for white applicants.”

Even today, military leaders remain wedded to the concept of “diversity” at the expense of equal treatment, engaging in racial discrimination at the military academies in the name of “diversity,” including mandating racial preferences in admissions. The Naval Academy illegally retaliated against a faculty member who criticized its use of racial preferences in admissions (the Naval Academy listed “diversity”as its “number one priority,” above learning).

Military leaders, catering to liberal Congressional leaders and the Obama Administration, cling tightly to the "diversity" dogma, demanding that those in the military keep silent rather than saying things that might call into question their "diversity" obsession:

"Naval Academy senior commanders decided during the World Series to remove two Midshipmen from the color guard that appeared. What was their offense? The color guard was deemed too white and too male. There was accordingly a push to make the color guard more 'diverse.' Two members of the color guard were removed and replaced by a Pakistani and a woman to achieve the requisite 'diversity.' The Pakistani unfortunately forgot his cap and shoes. He himself had to be replaced at the last minute by one of the two middies removed earlier. The midshipmen have reportedly been ordered not to speak of these events."

I am definitely not arguing for a ban on Muslims in the military.

The military has a critical shortage of, and need for, translators who speak languages like Pashto (spoken in Afghanistan), Urdu (spoken in Pakistan) and Arabic. These translators are often Muslim, and they should be welcome in the military. But neither should the military exempt Muslims from the rules of conduct imposed on soldiers of other religions.

That is an insult to the principle of equality under the law. Hasan's anti-American rants would not have been tolerated even in the armies of Muslim countries allied with the U.S., like say Albania.

In an absurd display of political correctness, early media reports on the tragedy barely mentioned the religion angle, choosing instead to highlight the irrelevant fact that the killer was an "army psychiatrist" or the false claim that he was a veteran with PTSD (which he wasn't: he never even served overseas).

Even after the killer's religious motive for the shootings became obvious, many liberal commentators, like The Atlantic's Max Fisher, were quick to deny it and jump to the opposite conclusion. Fisher lectured his readers that the killer "appears to not have been motivated by his Muslim religion, his Palestinian heritage . . . or any related political causes," and falsely suggested that those pointing to contrary evidence were "Islamophobic."



Equality and equal opportunity for women even during the processions of Holy Week

In a Spain with Zapatero's human rights even the Church is falling in line and stated the "total equality" of the members of the arch-confraternities that participate in the traditional processions. Such is the content of a decree on the new Diocesan regulation signed by the archbishop of Seville, monsignor Juan José Asenjo Pelegrina, that was distributed today to the media.

In the decree the archbishop calls for respect of the "total equality of rights" between members of the arch-confraternities, "without any discrimination because of sex, including the participation to penitence stations as an act of external worship".

The archbishop of Seville expressed "the will to end a process that dates back to 1997", so that women may participate in the penitence stations of the Holy Week, under the same conditions as the men, including in the role of 'costalero', the bearer of the heavy carts that replicate the steps of the passion of Christ.

Already in 1997 the Diocesan regulations established equal rights between the brothers and sisters of the arch-confraternities. In 2001, the then archbishop of Seville Carlos Amigo Vallejo insisted on this line in a call to the confraternities.

A few decades ago the first women dressed as Nazarenes appeared in the processions. Now they will also have to be accepted as bearers, thanks to the decree that will enter into force on March 2.



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 is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.


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