Thursday, October 31, 2013

Religion in American life

There is no doubt that the Christian religion has played an important role in American history but the idea that a free society can exist only with Christian underpinnings is wrong.  Australia is a most irreligious place yet is freer than America in many ways (e.g. on the 2010 Index of Economic Freedom).  And Japanese civility puts everyone to shame, despite the Japanese clinging resolutely to their own Shinto and Buddhist  religions.  And the early New England Protestants were in fact very tyrannical

Those attending the Family Research Council's most recent Values Voter Summit heard a lot about religious liberty – and with good reason. In ways both large and small, that cornerstone of freedom has found itself under attack at home and abroad. All Americans should be concerned about its well-being.

Religious liberty is as characteristic of America as our democratic political system and our free-market economy. Nowhere in the world is there more religious diversity, with all manner of faiths existing in relative harmony in the same neighborhoods, and with different houses of worship sharing the same streets in many cases.

History is filled with wars based on religious differences. Yet in the United States, these problems, with rare exceptions, are a distant memory.

Faith has always played a major role in American history. From our Founding Fathers to politicians today, acknowledgment of God in public speeches is commonplace in American discourse. In a letter to his wife on the day the Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress, John Adams wrote that the Fourth of July “ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.”

But while the United States was founded by men with the deep and abiding belief in a Christian God, they took great care to ensure that any and all religions would be respected and protected by the Constitution.

Today, however, the Founders' attitude toward religion is widely misunderstood. A major source of confusion is the phrase “separation of church and state,” used by President Thomas Jefferson in an 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptist Association of Connecticut.

Many have interpreted this phrase to mean that religion should be entirely personal, kept out of schools and other public institutions. However, as Heritage scholar Jennifer Marshall has argued, this interpretation is incorrect: “Jefferson wanted to protect states' freedom of religion from federal government control and religious groups' freedom to tend to their internal matters of faith and practice without government interference generally.”

America's Founding Fathers did not want the government to impose a government-sponsored church on all Americans. Neither did they seek to confine religion to a separate, private sphere of life.

On the contrary, they believed that religion had a vital and enduring role to play in the public affairs of the new American Republic. To cite Marshall again: “The Founders argued that virtue derived from religion is indispensable to limited government. In fact, the American Founders considered religious engagement in shaping the public morality essential to ordered liberty and the success of their experiment in self-government.”

We Americans are rightly proud of our tradition of political and economic liberty. Is an individual's freedom to choose, though, a sufficient guarantee of a good society? Our Founders did not think so. Social critic Irving Kristol observed, “It is religion that restrains the self-seeking hedonistic impulse so easily engendered by a successful market economy.”

One of the clearest expressions of the Founders' attitude toward religion – endorsed by most Americans today – came from our second president, John Adams. “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people,” Adams declared in 1798. “It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

Only a moral and religious people could acquire and retain such traits of character as honesty, kindness, thoughtfulness, respect for law, fairness, self-discipline and self-reliance – virtues the Founders rightly deemed necessary for self-rule.

Faith has always been an integral part of American society. Indeed, Alexis de Tocqueville went so far as to call religion “the first of America's political institutions,” because although it “never mixes directly in the government of society,” it nevertheless determines the “habits of the heart” of all Americans.

Whether you choose to worship or not, or however you choose to worship, everyone benefits from the interweaving of faith into our societal fabric. To eliminate it from public discourse would deny our history – and remove a crucial component of the American spirit.


So much for social mobility… 1,000 years after they invaded, you still have to have a Norman name like Darcy or Percy to get ahead in England

Only the brightest study at our elite universities… but if your name is Darcy or Percy, you have a natural advantage.

A study showed yesterday that despite the dramatic changes in our lifestyles during the past 800 years, the same names have dominated the student rolls at Oxford and Cambridge over that time.

Researchers found that there have been Darcys, Mandevilles, Percys and Montgomerys at the two universities for 27 generations, their prestige unbroken by historic upheavals and technological revolutions.

The unchallenged status of great wealth has meant that the same names who were at the top of the social scale in the time of William the Conqueror remain among the elite now, the report said.

By contrast there are some family names whose bearers were poor 150 years ago who are still likely to remain outside the ranks of the wealthy.

Among the poorer surnames, selected by researchers because they are relatively rare and the family line can more easily be traced, are Boorman, Cholmondley, Defoe, Goodhill, Ledwell, Rowthorn, Sidwells and Tonbridge.

The researchers from the London School of Economics, Dr Neil Cummins and Professor Gregory Clark, said the name checks showed that social mobility in England is hardly greater than in medieval times and that people inherit their social status even more than they inherit their height.

Dr Cummins said: ‘Just take the names of the Normans who conquered England nearly 1,000 years ago. Surnames such as Baskerville, Darcy, Mandeville and Montgomery are still over-represented at Oxbridge and also among elite occupations such as medicine, law and politics.

‘What is surprising is that between 1800 and 2011 there have been substantial institutional changes in England but no gain in rates of social mobility for society as a whole.’

The study comes at a time of widespread concern about social mobility as large-scale research suggests that those born to less well-off families have had less chance of success since the 1970s.

Much of the blame has been pinned on the education system, with left-wingers attacking universities for failing to admit students from poor backgrounds, while right-wingers say the abolition of the grammar schools cut off the way up for working class children.

The LSE research said that the spread of mass education over the past 150 years has done nothing to break the grip of the longstanding elite on positions of power, and that the same families have been on top despite centuries of religious reformation, civil war, industrial revolution, the growth of democracy and education, and the birth of the welfare state.

Conventional estimates say it takes three to five generations for a wealthy family to fall to the middle ground and a poor family to rise to the same level.

The researchers tested the idea by examining student rolls for Oxford and Cambridge universities going back to 1170, four years after the Norman Conquest.

The two institutions were the only universities in England until 1832 and continue to accept only the best-qualified students.

'There has been modest improvement in social mobility rates between the medieval era and the modern world, with that change occurring around 1800,' the researchers said.

But they added: 'The remarkable status persistence found using Oxbridge attendance as the status measure is found just as strongly with a more general and democratic measure of status such as asset ownership.

'Over the generations there were substantial increases in the rate of taxation of wealth and income, especially after 1910. Yet this did nothing to increase rates of wealth mobility.'


Bibles banned at British student halls: Company branded 'anti-Christian' after stopping Gideons from leaving Holy Book in rooms

A company that manages student halls has been branded ‘anti-Christian’ after banning the Gideons from leaving Bibles in bedrooms.

Digs, which manages halls for Huddersfield University, said it wants properties to be ‘ethically neutral’. It also claims the ban is necessary because many students are from overseas.

But the Rev Mike Smith, a former minister at Huddersfield’s Golcar Baptist Church, said: ‘Our culture is not ethically neutral.  “I am sure that university authorities would not consider it ‘ethically neutral’ if their accommodation was used as a brothel, crack-house or a store for terrorist weapons.  ‘Banning bibles is not ‘ethically neutral’. It is a positive anti-Christian step, and could be the edge of a very dangerous wedge.’

He added: ‘What is considered perfectly acceptable in hotels, hospitals and prisons is not fit for students! How foolish can you get?

‘There are two reasons. Both are utterly spurious.

‘Are the university authorities not aware that the Christian faith is a worldwide faith? And as for non-Christian students, they are not compelled to read the bibles.’

Robyn Towning, marketing manager for the Digs, which has been responsible for refurbishing the 1,386 capacity Storthes Hall Park for Huddersfield University, said: ‘It’s not our role to be religious or have political views and impress them on our students.  ‘We are here to provide accommodation and pastoral care.

‘Their bibles are in reception and there’s a Koran so students can access them if they want.’

Mr Towning added: ‘I don’t think the measure is anti-Christian; it’s our job to be neutral.’

The Gideons are an evangelical Christian organisation formed in 1899.


One in 10 foreign criminals back on the streets of Britain because officials have failed to kick them out of the UK

One in every ten prisoners held at a jail for foreign criminals was freed back on to Britain’s streets because officials failed to deport them, a damning report reveals.

Inspectors said the convicts were released without undergoing any behaviour programmes designed to keep the public safe.

It had been ‘irresponsibly’ assumed there was no point rehabilitating the criminals locked-up at HMP Canterbury since they were going to be booted out of the UK.

But, due to human rights appeals and other hold ups, at least ten per cent of the inmates were set free in the UK.

It is embarrassing for ministers because Canterbury was designated as a prison specifically for overseas convicts facing deportation.

At another jail, Lincoln, a Somalian rapist was still behind bars nine years after passing his release date because ministers had not been able to arrange his removal.

The failures were identified in the annual report of her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Prisons, who warned that ‘cracks were beginning to show’ in the prison system.

Nick Hardwick was scathing of the efforts being made at some jails to get foreign offenders out of the country.

The report said that ‘in some prisons the relationship with the Home Office was poor or non-existent and foreign national prisoners had difficulty in progressing their cases or even knowing where they stood in relation to deportation’.

At HMP Lincoln, the Somalian rapist, who was sentenced to eight years in prison for rape, completed his sentence in 2002.  But he was deemed too dangerous to be released prior to his removal from the country, which is being held up by legal wrangles.

Under human rights law, foreign criminals can dodge removal to Somalia on the grounds it is too dangerous.

In a recent snapshot of the scale of the problem, Home Office figures showed that, on a single day in August, 937 foreign nationals were behind bars despite completing their prison sentences.

Keeping them in jail costs the taxpayer tens of millions of pounds each year. The Lincoln case alone has cost the taxpayer almost £450,000.

Yesterday, the Mail revealed how a notorious gang ‘general’ who poses a ‘serious threat to the public’ could be back on Britain’s streets within months because ministers have failed to have him deported.

Joland Giwa, whose street name is Dexter, led a campaign of terror on the streets of Croydon, South London, and is ready ‘at any time to use knives and weapons’, police say.

He was thought to be from Nigeria or Sierra Leone, but both countries refuse to accept he is one of theirs and linguists have now said he has a strong London accent, despite finding that he used English spoken in Nigeria.

A judge ruled that immigration officials had three months to get him travel documents and if they failed Giwa should be released.

The Ministry of Justice closed Canterbury prison earlier this year as part of plans to modernise the prison estate.

The Home Office said it had unveiled plans to make it easier to deport foreign criminals.

They include making it harder for offenders to claim they have a human right to a ‘family life’ in the UK, and the introduction of a system where criminals are deported first, then appeal from their own country.



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


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Useless sh*ts murder a defenseless old man who was a real contributor to his community

What have any of this useless and cowardly dreck ever done for anyone?  They should fry

A World War II veteran who became known as the 'Tamale King' and was a celebrity of the Delta region in Mississippi has been laid to rest with Navy honors after he was brutally murdered during a botched robbery.

Lawrence E. Thornton, 87, was a pillar of his community, beloved by all who knew him - especially his two sons, seven grand-children and six great-grandchildren.

His funeral Thursday included a U.S. Navy Honor Guard and the honor guard from his local Knights of Columbus society - a tribute to both his stature and his service aboard a Navy minesweeper in the Pacific during the Second World War.

'Shine' Thornton died October 20 - two days after he was attacked in his own driveway in Greenville, Mississippi, by four teens who wanted his wallet. Police allege they battered the elderly man and pushed him to the ground before robbing him.

Terrance Morgan, 19, Edward Johnson, 19, Geblonski Murray, 18, and Leslie Litt, 18, were arrested last Monday following a public manhunt that included a reward being offered from local business leaders.

They were charged with capital murder, robbery and conspiracy to commit a robbery.

Laura Cockrell Thornton, Shine Thornon's daughter-in-law, wrote on Facebook that he would have appreciated the ceremony.

'It's been a tough but beautiful day. Tough because we said our final goodbyes to our beloved Pa Shine but beautiful because it was the type of day he would have loved,' she said.

'It was a beautiful blue sky day. The funeral mass was perfect - from the Knights of Columbus Honor Guard, to the homily, to the beautiful music, to the Navy Honor Guard at the cemetery, to the delicious meal we enjoyed together afterwards with family and friends - he would have loved every minute of it!'

Thornton served as a Fireman First Class aboard the USS Herald, a minesweeper that saw significant service in the Pacific. He remained proud of his service on her her until his death.

The coffee mug he used every morning at his favorite diner was a commemoration of the Herald. He drank from it so much, the inscription was worn entirely off.

At Jim's Cafe, his favorite haunt, they tied a black ribbon to his regular chair and placed his coffee mug on the table as a silent memorial to their reliable customer.

He was known in the Delta region for his award-winning Maria’s Famous Hot Tamales, which he began cooking in 1984, named after his wife, Mary.  According to Southern Foodways, Shine entered the hot tamale business with a jerry-rigged recipe he got from a friend, and added his own spin to it.

Thornton earned his nickname Shine in high school when he began picking out the notes to ‘You are My Sunshine’ during the intermission of a performance.  Members of the band started calling him Sunshine and eventually shortened it to Shine, according to his obituary.

His sunny disposition was still with him as he grew older. According to the website he would sell his snacks out of the custom built kitchen in his home and sit with customers, often playing the fiddle to entertain his guests.


A happy normal woman

One can only feel sorry for "liberated" women.  My son was conceived because his mother decided that she "just wanted to be a mother"  -- despite already having 3 children.  I was delighted -- JR

Tripping over four pairs of glittery pumps in the downstairs hall, I stumbled into our playroom only to be greeted by squealing laughter and an overpowering waft of nail polish.

Tiny toes were being painted a kaleidoscope of colours and lashings of lip gloss indelicately sloshed onto sticky pint-sized pouts as three of my daughters immersed themselves in playing ‘beauty salon’.

Upstairs I could hear the roar of a hair dryer competing against a One Direction CD, while back in the playroom, my six-year-old Helena was ordering the customers of her toy sweetshop not to touch the little lollipops on the plastic shelf without ‘paying’ first.

Chaos? Yes. But for me, nothing out of the ordinary. For years, my house has been girls world central. With six daughters, it’s a place where bedrooms are a blizzard of fairies and Barbies and the bathroom is crammed with scented soaps and sparkly hair bobbles.

But suddenly, in the middle of this explosion of femininity, I catch a glimpse of powder blue. My gorgeous, chunky baby boy. George. My precious longed-for son — a baby boy born after six girls.

My son. I still can’t believe I can say these words. I never really thought it would happen. I pinch myself every morning when I scoop him from his cot and gaze at his little boyish face. I thought we only did girls. Girls who came one after another, all gorgeous and much loved, but none of them, well, boys.

I admit now I was prepared to keep going until we had a son. And if it meant we ended up with a houseful of girls, which we did, well, that was absolutely fine.

It’s not that I haven’t adored having daughters — I love all the girly shopping and baking, the softness and companionship. But as one arrived after another, part of me felt a deep, desperate yearning for a boy, fuelled in part by the fact that my husband Jamie didn’t have a son — someone he could kick a ball with in the park, go to the match with, pass on the family name to.

Whenever friends who had boys would say they were taking their sons on, say, a ‘lads and dads’ camping weekend I felt —what? — envy, sadness, longing.

I desperately wanted a boy and my husband Jamie longed for someone he could call ‘my son’.

But as baby girl followed baby girl, it seemed that having a son was a mere dream. That is, until September 4 last year, when the world turned blue and we were finally able to use the boy’s name —George — we’d chosen so long ago.

Every time I fell pregnant, the name had been there, ready to use if the baby was a boy. And each time it was quietly set aside as we welcomed another gorgeous little girl into our home. How long would we have to keep going until we could use it?

And there’s no question that our girls — Olivia, 19, Alicia, 14, Isabella, 8, Lucia, 7, Helena, 6 and Tallula, 3 — are gorgeous. They each have the perfect mix of my half-Jamaican background and their father’s blue-eyed blond genes.

But we ached for what seemed to elude us. It wasn’t helped by the increasingly ‘disappointed’ reaction of friends, family and people we knew.   It’s amazing how people just say things without thinking. We stopped getting ‘Congratulations!’ and started to get ‘Oh, not another girl!’

You’d think something terrible had happened. It hadn’t, but in truth every new arrival only served as a reminder of what we didn’t have and what we so desperately wanted. And how I would have to keep going if I was ever going to be in with a chance of having a son.

When Jamie and I married after meeting through friends, we always knew we wanted to have at least four children. At the time, I was working in retail management but gave up work after having the first two girls to be a full-time mum.

At first, having girls was a novelty since Jamie, a highway maintenance manager, is one of three boys and I have three older brothers (and no sisters).  But by the time Lucia — our fourth girl — arrived, we really started to wonder whether we were ever going to have a boy.

After each girl, we’d tell ourselves that was it, that our family was complete. But then, well, I love babies, and we’d give it another try. And I was quite young — I’m 37 — I just thought, we’ll keep going until we get one.

I never found it difficult to conceive and when I fell pregnant with George, I didn’t feel any differently to how I did in my other pregnancies. I seemed to carry my bump the same way too and didn’t have particularly bad morning sickness.

We’d always found out the sex of all our other babies at the 20-week scan. But for some reason, with George I decided not to.  As Jamie said, it was bound to be a girl, so what was the point?

Meanwhile, as the birth drew closer, I began neatly pressing the pink Babygros stowed away from previous pregnancies as we steeled ourselves for another little girl. I went into labour on the first day of the autumn term last year.

We rushed the children off to school then raced to Wythenshawe Hospital in Manchester where 20 minutes later and with only a few gusts of gas and air, our 8lb 2oz baby came bouncing into the world.  We’d told the midwife we wanted to see for ourselves what the baby would be rather than her telling us, so as soon as George came out she just held him up to us.

We were speechless. All we could both keep saying, over and over again was: ‘Oh my god, a boy!’ We’d done it! As she wheeled us back to the ward, the midwife stopped everyone she met in the corridor, proudly announcing that this baby boy had been born after six girls.

I stayed in hospital for only six hours. It had been an easy birth and I wanted to get home so that George could meet his big sisters. Their reaction was electric as they clamoured round him, squealing with delight. They couldn’t believe it. They kept saying: ‘We’ve got a little brother.’ They were as shocked as we were.

Nothing prepared me for the reaction from friends and family. Our five-bedroom semi in Timperley, Greater Manchester, was transformed into a sea of blue — from sprawling flower arrangements and baby presents to the huge balloons heralding the arrival of our own little prince.

Having this little bundle of blue among our brood was just incredible. The girls couldn’t stop fussing over him. And Jamie and I would just sit there looking at him.

As a tiny baby, apart from the blizzard of blue that had invaded our house, things weren’t that different. (Well, apart from nappy changes — I wasn’t prepared for the projectile wee which goes everywhere as soon as the nappy comes off.) George had no choice but to fit in with our girly household.

With so many children, we do our best to make sure order and routine prevail — from sitting down round the table to have dinner together at night, to homework, and systematic bed times. George was simply timetabled into this.

But as he gets bigger, I’m really beginning to feel the ‘boyish’ impact he makes. For a start, I’m used to girly appetites.

Then, the other day, the family sat down to their Sunday dinner only to watch in awe as George reached out for one roast potato after another.

The toys are changing too. We’re buying football nets for the garden and George now has his first train set — though he seems just as happy playing with the girls’ dolls! We’re also going to put up a blue play house in the garden to sit alongside the pink one.

Jamie loves tumbling about with him — the girls always seemed too delicate for that. And as he does so, he keeps calling George ‘my boy’ or ‘my son’.

I love shopping for his clothes, from tiny jeans to crisp shirts: in fact I’ve already bought him a smart shirt and tie for Christmas Day. After years of careful bulk buying frocks or passing down clothes for the girls, it’s such fun to pick out outfits for my son.

Everyone keeps asking if I’m calling it a day now on the baby front. Well, I do feel fit and healthy — I jog a few miles a couple of times a week to keep in shape — so in theory I could carry on. And Jamie has joked that he’d like a little brother for George.

But while that would be nice, we have learned over the years that there are no guarantees.

In fact there’s a lady I know on the school run who has just had her seventh boy. I don’t think I could have done that. It’s easy to keep going when you’ve got lots of girly girls, but I think the prospect of a houseful of noisy, messy boys might have been more of a challenge.

Now though, after such a long wait, we just want to enjoy what we have: a longed for baby boy, an utterly adored son, and a gorgeous little brother to six big sisters. I don’t think I could ask for much more than that ....



Chief calls for corrected training on 'extremists'

The chief of the U.S. Army has ordered that training for the military on “extremists” be halted until the program can be corrected and standardized to eliminate reported Christian-bashing

It was earlier this month that one such “training” course was reported to have labeled the pro-family American Family Association as a hate group – a designation that earlier was applied to the group by the domestic terror case-linked Southern Poverty Law Center.

According to Fox News Radio’s Todd Starnes, Army Secretary John McHugh has given military leaders a memo with the orders.

“On several occasions over the past few months, media accounts have highlighted instances of Army instructors supplementing programs of instruction and including information or material that is inaccurate, objectionable and otherwise inconsistent with current Army policy,” the memo said.

Starnes reported an Army spokesman, David Patterson Jr., said McHugh “directed that Army leaders cease all briefings, command presentations or training on the subject of extremist organizations or activities until that program of instruction and training has been created and disseminated.”

It was a soldier at a Camp Shelby in Mississippi who presented evidence to media that an Army presenter at a briefing identified AFA as a “hate group” because of its stance on homosexuality and marriage.

Army spokesman George Wright later confessed the characterization of AFA was “acquired from an Internet search” and “did not come from official Army sources, nor was it approved by senior Army leaders, senior equal opportunity counselors or judge-advocate personnel.”

Tim Wildmon, president of AFA, one of the country’s largest Christian ministries, said: “We are probably going to be taking legal action. The Army has smeared us. They’ve defamed the American Family Association.”

Brian Fischer, AFA’s director of issues analysis, said the Internet source likely was the Southern Poverty Law Center, which routinely labels Christians who adhere to biblical teaching on homosexuality as “hate groups.”

At the time, he said: “The blatantly false ‘hate’ allegation is coming from the Southern Poverty Law Center, which is now a thoroughly discredited source on any subject, especially hate. In fact, for spreading malicious lies about pro-family groups, SPLC belongs on its own hate group list. They’ve made a despicable career out of using lies, distortions and innuendo to whip up reckless and dangerous animosity against groups which defend the values of the Founders.”

Fischer said the “real hate group here is the SPLC.”



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


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Young British mother jailed for making two false rape claims within hours after getting drunk and sleeping with friend's partner

Another lying hotbox

A young mother has been jailed after she made two different false reports of rape within hours after drunkenly sleeping with her friend's partner.

The man only proved his innocence because he filmed the sexual encounter on his mobile phone and the footage showed she was a willing and active participant.

Ashleigh Loder, 25, wasted at least 100 hours of police time and subjected the man, who has not been named, to police questioning after inventing the two attacks in Bideford, North Devon.

She first contacted police - drunk on vodka - saying she had been dragged to the ground and raped in an alleyway by two strangers.

But when forensic tests seemed to disprove the story, she fabricated a new one - accusing a man of date raping her at home.

A friend of the man's partner, Loder admitted she fabricated a story fearing the consequences of sleeping with him.

She spread her claims about him around Bideford and he was forced to stay inside, becoming a recluse for two weeks to avoid reprisals, Exeter Crown Court was told.

Loder, of Bideford, admitted perverting the course of justice and was jailed for six months by Judge Phillip Wassall.

He told her: 'The man was branded a rapist locally and it caused him considerable distress and suffered threats within the local area and lost time off work.

'One can only imagine what it is like to be accused of a very serious crime which could carry a sentence of around six years.

'There are some offences so serious that the court has no option other than immediate custody.

'There must be a clear message to anyone who invents a serious allegation, particularly one such as this which carries such a stigma.'

Jonathan Barnes, prosecuting, said Loder called the police on the night of December 1 last year and initially claimed to have been raped in an alley near her home as she left for a night out.

But after changing her account of events, her friend's partner was forced to take time off work for police questioning.

He proved his innocence with images of their affair and a text Loder had sent him claiming to have been raped in an alley.

Mr Barnes said: 'The allegations had a considerable effect on him. They were bandied about the area and he had to live like a recluse for two weeks. He lost two stone of weight through the stress and had problems sleeping.'

Greg Richardson, defending, said: 'Her life was a complete dream and she convinced herself she had been raped. Who knows what was going on in her mind but she believed something within her had said no.

'She says the situation she got into was rock bottom. She wishes to apologise sincerely to the man.'


The Second Biggest Issue in America

Bruce Bialosky

The government was shut down and we had spent up to the limit of what we could legally borrow. But the country was not focused on the fact that our new health care law was beginning as a dismal failure. Or that our tax collectors are running rampant with no promised Presidential butt-kicking. Record numbers of people are on food stamps, even as our economy has supposedly grown for four years and the employment rate has supposedly shrunk. None of these constitute the second most important issue in America. That would be the name of Washington D.C.’s professional football team.

My commenting on this issue has no personal interest. I could not give a rat’s behind about the NFL. I am a Saturday football guy when teams like the Buckeyes, Bruins, Crimson Tide and Fighting Irish play. But watching the spectacle that has occurred over the name of a team that has existed for 81 years has been quite astonishing.

I am aware of some disruption that has occurred across America over teams named after groups now called “Native Americans.” Well, they were not actually Native Americans because they came from elsewhere also.It is just that they came here before the Europeans. We have to call them Native Americans because someone decided that at some point, and it made some people happy.

It did not exactly make the newly-named Native Americans happy. They are still being segregated on mostly worthless tribal lands. They are still living under the protection of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (who still call them Indians) on supposedly sovereign lands. They have not been mainstreamed into this society and suffer every cultural malady that could possibly occur when you are being helped by our federal government. The only thing that has advanced since they were moved around the country over a century ago is that they now own casinos. Yes, folks, we gave them the right to operate gambling parlors because they live on fictionalized sovereign land. And, of course, we changed their name to Native Americans.

Now we have this fight over the name of the football team. I don’t know what the Native Americans think because I hear conflicting reports. I do know, as a Jew, how I might feel if there were teams named the New Jersey Yids or the Florida Hebs. But those were always derogatory terms. The name of this football team is not. The team name was once honored and used by Native Americans. I don’t think the team took a name because they were dishonoring it. They thought it was a sign of strength. That is why we Jews never had a team named after us. Someone could have named their team the Maccabees. Now that the Israelis have proven to be such effective fighters maybe someone will name their team the Israelis. I think I would be proud.

When I grew up there were derogatory terms for many groups of people, but two that were not were Colored and Negro. "Colored” is obviously what the “C” stands for in NAACP. There is also the United Negro College Fund. Both of these organizations are still thriving with their names intact; but, if you use either of those terms, someone would look at you as if you had a few screws loose. We were then told we had to use the term Black. Then Jesse Jackson comes up with the term African-American and now what we use has to change again.

Yet with all the name changing, where have the Black people gotten? Yes, there have been some advancements with newly-elected officials, but the pace of improvement has been slow.Youth unemployment for Blacks reached a 25-year high in September at 49 percent. The rate of out-of-wedlock births is at 70 percent which is perceived as the prime road to poverty.

This is all about one issue and one issue only: White Liberal Guilt (WLG). That is why these subjects keep on being brought up and this is why these issues move forward.Sometimes WLG spreads beyond the liberals; for example, when we elected our current President who has proven in five years that he is not up to the job in so many ways. It manifests itself when the Stanford Indians became the Stanford Cardinals and adopt the silliest mascot in sports – a tree.

The problem with WLG is it never deals with the underlying problems.It only assuages the feelings of the liberals who get back to their cozy homes in their nice cars where they might write a check to further assuage their feelings.Or they will hold a fundraiser and bemoan the plight of whatever group they currently are focused upon.

A few Native Americans may feel better about themselves if the Washington football team becomes the Senators or the Wildcats. But for most they will still go back to their reservations and the pallid lives aided by a government worker. Now at least they can count their chips.


TV Has to Be at Least 42 Percent Gay?

The media elites glowed as they reported a judge had forced New Jersey to become the 14th state to honor and celebrate the "gay marriage" concept. When homosexuals marry in Hoboken, the gay left will be — should be — thanking Hollywood.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) has issued a new report boasting that "TV hasn't merely reflected the changes in social attitudes; it has also had an important role in bringing them about. Time and again, it's been shown that personally knowing an LGBT person is one of the most influential factors in shifting one's views on LGBT issues, but in the absence of that, many viewers have first gotten to know us as television characters."

If network executives were honest, they'd be slamming this report. If. Haven't they routinely insisted that TV shows have zero effect on the audience? That's their constant mantra when defending sex and violence on TV. They're silent. They know exactly how much they influence.

GLAAD and The Hollywood Reporter commissioned a poll last fall that found in the past 10 years, about three times as many voters have become more supportive of "marriage equality" (31 percent) as more opposed (10 percent). When asked how television has influenced them, 27 percent said "inclusive" TV shows made them more "inclusive," while six percent were more "anti-marriage equality."

As GLAAD put it, "Telling our stories to a mass audience is an important role that television continues to play."

These cultural trend-enforcers went after the movies this summer, complaining that out of the 101 film releases by the major studios in the 2012 calendar year, "only 14 films contained characters identified as lesbian, gay or bisexual. There were no films containing transgender characters."

The silver-screen people need to catch up, they lectured: "But if the major Hollywood studios want a real barometer of how much has changed in our society and how much catching up they have to do, they need only look at what's become one of the greatest threats to their viability: television."

In the 2012-13 TV season, GLAAD found a record number of LGBT characters — 4.4 percent, or at least double their actual percentage of the population. Fox was honored for having these characters in 42 percent of their programming hours — although that wasn't enough for "Excellent" status, merely "Good."

There's no wonder that a Gallup poll in 2011 found that on average, American adults estimate that 25 percent of Americans are homosexual. They're getting that crazy idea from TV.

GLAAD is using that example to proselytize the movie studios: "The 'novelty' of these (TV) characters being LGBT has long since passed, and now they're simply unique personalities making up part of unique character ensembles."

That doesn't mean these guardians of inclusion aren't going to keep pressuring TV. The new gay-focused sitcoms "Partners" and "The New Normal" were canceled, alongside other shows with socially liberal agendas. To compensate, GLAAD is even bashing The History Channel for having zero gay characters.

They don't mean in the Civil War documentaries. History executives have loaded their schedule with fictional and "reality TV" shows, and GLAAD is having a tantrum. "The closest the network seemed to get was on the scripted drama 'Vikings,' which depicted one 'straight' Viking couple sexually propositioning a monk they had enslaved." They even expect Middle Ages dramas to have gay scenes or characters in 42 percent of programming hours.

They want children indoctrinated as well. GLAAD is also not shy when it comes to Teen Nick, Cartoon Network and the Disney Channel. Apparently, children also desperately need the propaganda of gay characters in 42 percent of programming hours. They're extremely happy with the liberalism of "ABC Family" and have relayed that Disney Channel executives promised GLAAD they will "introduce LGBT characters in an episode of its original series 'Good Luck Charlie' set to air in 2014, a first for the network." The first of many, they expect.

Here's the catch: Gay characters never face any real opposition to the gay agenda on these so-called "inclusive" programs. There is no measure of Orthodox religious inclusion and no real debates. The victory of the left is assumed without thinking. When a conservative character is created — like Ellen Barkin's "Nana" in "The New Normal" — it's a vicious cartoon, the kind that those "against defamation" folks deeply enjoy.

These people are all about tolerance and sensitivity. But if you disagree with them, they will have your head. Ask anyone in Hollywood who's pro-family.


There was a conspiracy behind Britain's immigration surge – our do-gooding silence

Mass immigration happened for the obvious, boring reasons: business likes cheap labour, and Labour likes new votes. There’s no organised, malign conspiracy

It’s difficult to know how to react, part one. A cabby said to me on Thursday night: “Do you think there’s a conspiracy?” We’d been talking about his holiday in France, and I’d asked him if he fancied retiring there.

From this we got to “They keep France quite French, you know?” and then, of course, to immigration. He thought that it suited capitalists and the Labour Party alike, delivering squeezed wages for the former (“that’s just a fact”) and plenty of votes for the latter.

I said: “Why would there need to be a conspiracy? Aren’t those reasons good enough explanation for the evidence?” I agree with both propositions, never quite able to join in the Boris‑esque rejoicing at the changing face of London. Poor people work for rubbish wages: hooray. Not all diversity is good for cohesion: heresy.

He looked at me in his mirror. He thought I was copping out. I looked at myself in another mirror, later that night, brushing my teeth. Maybe I should have made more clear to the man that such hallucinatory theories lead to racism. Maybe I got it wrong, and should have confronted the conspiracy theory – of a “them” and “us” – more forcefully.

It’s difficult to know how to react, part two. When Tommy Robinson abruptly departed the organisation he’d founded, the English Defence League (EDL), and proclaimed himself opposed to violence, there was widespread joy, and not only from liberals. One sinner repenting, etc.

But I was never able to join in the mandatory Two Minutes Hate about the EDL, and found the commentariat’s inability to understand what they were witnessing quite baffling. To dismiss the EDL as “simply” fascists was an error, I think.

Maybe growing up in the west of Scotland, where young men often felt the need of a crowd in order to defend their group’s identity, even against phantoms – while, intellectually, rejecting the sectarianism of my youth – maybe it’s left me, subconsciously, empathetic to the yearning that fuels such collectives.

Maybe, too, living so long in east London – no. Tell the truth. Maybe that a significant reason for our departure from east London was that it had become increasingly unpleasant for gay people to live there: the verbal abuse we’d received, twice, walking home, “gay-free zone” stickers on lamp-posts. Maybe this, too, left me with a slight (and not subconscious) understanding of why working-class men from Luton would want to protest about the Islamification (as they saw it) of their (as they considered it) town.

What – you didn’t feel angry at the poppy-burning? You don’t read about yet another college which segregates the sexes at public events, and shake your head in bewilderment? Please do not pretend that I’m the sole non-racist Briton who can understand the incoherent anger, if not the methods, of the men who sought something like the EDL in order to give them voice.

It’s hard to say this, for fear of providing succour to racists, for fear of being accused of racism, but mainly, I hope, because my empathy isn’t a facility with directional control. It extends to people with very different backgrounds, to newcomers as well as the indigenous. Most newcomers make good Britons. Which makes it difficult to know how to react. Easier to condemn the EDL yobbery and assure ourselves that it was just that: yobbery.

It’s difficult to know how to react, part three. That video of a young man being beaten up by Muslim youths in east London, who smash a beer bottle in his face and then kick him to the ground.

Don’t be ridiculous. It’s not difficult at all. (And if you wish to dismiss this as “just” violence, imagine the news coverage were gangs of Christian youths found to be prowling Oxfordshire, beating up their atheist neighbours.)

It shouldn’t have been difficult, either, to react to (and stop) the EDL by being honest about the reasons for its growth. There is a link, I very much fear, between the simple-minded recitation of “Shut up, you racists” and the beating of that man. A climatic link, anyway.

The cabby drew the wrong conclusions from the evidence. Mass immigration happened for the obvious, boring reasons: business likes cheap labour, and Labour likes new votes. There’s no organised, malign conspiracy controlling society; no shadowy puppet-masters. No one planned that Islamist vigilantes would attempt to make east London a “gay-free zone”.

But there is a conspiracy of sorts, none the less. It’s the conspiracy of silence, which we wished into being, all by ourselves. The horror of it is that we did so for the kindest of reasons: we want to believe the best of people; otherwise, how can we think well of ourselves?

Difficult to know how to react? You tell me. With hindsight, a little more reaction in the late 1990s – a little more border control, a little more clarity about Britishness – would have been very welcome.



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


Monday, October 28, 2013

Jail social workers who take children without telling parents why, says Britain's top family judge

Sir James Munby said family courts must be exposed to the 'glare of publicity'

The country’s most senior family judge yesterday launched a furious attack on social workers who failed to tell parents why their children were being adopted – and suggested that in future the same offence could carry a jail term.

Local authority workers in Bristol ignored a court order requiring them to explain why the couple’s two children were being taken for adoption.

They only released the information to the parents 45 minutes before the decision was due to be finalised, giving the family no real hope of mounting a challenge in court.

Sir James Munby, who is President of the Family Division, said their behaviour was ‘deplorable’ and ‘symptomatic of a deeply rooted culture in family courts’.

In his judgment, he accused the social workers of having a ‘slapdash’ and ‘lackadaisical’ attitude to court orders.

He said the couple, who were facing the ‘permanent loss of two children’ had been denied ‘vitally important’ information.

He also warned that in future, there would be ‘consequences’ for social workers, suggesting that they could be jailed for contempt if they fail to comply with court orders – an offence that carries a sentence of up to two years.

Until now, local authority workers have largely been protected by family courts, which also routinely tolerate delays and inefficiencies in their work.

By contrast, members of the public who have failed to comply with court orders have been dealt with severely.

The most notorious case of this was the prison sentence for contempt handed down to Wanda Maddocks, who wanted to get her father out of a care home where she thought he was being ill-treated.

Miss Maddocks was jailed without representation and in secret until her case was revealed by the Daily Mail.

But Sir James’s warning suggests council staff will now face the same punishment as ordinary members of the public if they fail – either through incompetence or unwillingness – to hand over the required information on time.

He told the court: ‘That the parents should have been put in this position is quite deplorable.  ‘It is, unhappily, symptomatic of a deeply rooted culture in the family courts which, however long established, will no longer be tolerated.

'The court is entitled to expect – and from now on family courts will demand – strict compliance with all such orders.  ‘Non-compliance with orders should be expected to have and will usually have a consequence.’

He added: ‘There is simply no excuse for this. Orders must be obeyed and complied with to the letter and on time. Non-compliance with an order, any order, by anyone is bad enough.  ‘It is a particularly serious matter if the defaulter is a public body such as a local authority.

‘It is also a particularly serious matter if the order goes to something as vitally important as the right of a parent who is facing the permanent loss of their child to know what case is being mounted against them by a public authority.’

Lib Dem MP John Hemming, who has campaigned for openness in the family courts, said: ‘At least anybody who is sent down for contempt by Sir James will not be locked up in secret.

‘He has put the boot on to the other foot. The next time courts are let down by the incompetence or bloody-mindedness of social workers, it will be a director of children’s services facing jail rather than a parent.’


Senior citizen forced to pay £3,500 in compensation to carer for constructive dismissal because her hours were cut when his wife died

A grieving pensioner was ordered to pay a carer £3,500 for ‘unfair dismissal’ because he cut her hours when his wife died.

George Lomas, 77, was told he breached Jayne Wakefield’s contract by not giving notice that her hours would decrease after his wife Rose’s death.  Mrs Wakefield had cared for  Parkinson’s sufferer Mrs Lomas for five years, with her wages paid by the council.

When his wife died, Mr Lomas offered to pay the carer himself – for fewer hours than before – to help as he coped with his loss.  She sat next to the pensioner at Mrs Lomas’s funeral, holding his hand and wiping his tears.

But the very next day, she resigned by letter, demanding redundancy pay.

Yesterday, the ‘devastated’ grandfather of one said: ‘How was I supposed to give her notice? You don’t have notice when your wife is going to die.  ‘My wife would be heartbroken because she trusted Jayne. We never thought she would do that.

‘At Rose’s funeral, she was telling everyone she was going to look after me, then the next day she was asking for redundancy money.  ‘It’s unreal – we treated her like a daughter and she has betrayed us.’

Mrs Wakefield, 55, took Mr Lomas to an employment tribunal.

A judge rejected her claim, but on appeal she was awarded £3,568, including redundancy pay and compensation for constructive unfair dismissal and breach of contract.

Last night, her husband Leslie, 59, said: ‘She’s been given the redundancy money which she is entitled to and that’s the end of the story.

‘People die. Husbands die, children die, wives die – it happens, I’m afraid. Mr Lomas was Jayne’s employer, it is as simple as that. I don’t think it’s a large bill – he’s sitting on loads of premium bonds anyway.’

Even though Mrs Lomas’s care was funded by Cheshire East Council, Mr Lomas will have to pay the whole compensation sum from his own pocket. That is because he is legally classed as Mrs Wakefield’s employer after paying her privately for just a few days after his wife’s death.

The retired accountant said he does not know how he will cope and accused the council of ‘washing their hands of the issue’.

He said: ‘I’m on a company and state pension, but I just haven’t got the money to pay for this.’

Mr Lomas said he offered to pay the carer for 16 hours a week, when she had previously put in 30 hours a week caring for Mrs Lomas.  But Mrs Wakefield told the tribunal in Birmingham that she quit because there was no written offer.

Mr Lomas added that the incident had taken its toll on him and he had since suffered a minor stroke.  He said: ‘It’s ruined my health. My doctor told me it has been brought on by the stress of this case.  ‘To contact me the day after I lost my wife is disgusting.

‘And when she pushed a letter through the door saying she was suing me – my world fell apart.

‘I will never forgive her,’ he said, speaking from his home in Scholar Green, Cheshire.

Mr Lomas started caring for his wife of 51 years, a retired quality controller, when she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s almost 25 years ago.  As her condition grew worse, Mrs Wakefield, a neighbour of the couple at the time, came in as a carer.

At first, the council paid Mrs Wakefield directly, but later Mr Lomas received a grant to cover the cost.

His son Adrian, managing director of a digital agency, said: ‘All this has really upset dad.  ‘One day she was sitting in the front row of the church holding dad’s hand at mum’s funeral, the next there’s a letter pushed through his door.’

The 44-year-old said pensioners who pay for care should be careful.  ‘Once the council stopped paying for care direct, people like Dad were made to employ people themselves and then pay them out of the money the council gave them,’ he said.  ‘That means they have a responsibility for PAYE, holiday pay and even redundancy payments.  ‘But no one made this clear to my father. He had never employed anybody in his life.

‘This has been a real kick in the teeth for all of us, especially dad. Legally I understand why the appeal was upheld, but morally there’s something very wrong about this.’

A council spokesman said: ‘Mr Lomas has not been in receipt of adult care services from Cheshire East Council.  ‘His care arrangements, therefore, were a private matter and the council is not liable for claims made via an employment tribunal.’

Mrs Wakefield was not available  for comment.


Prayers now axed in most British town halls: Just 22 per cent of councils still have Bible reading at start of meetings

Christian prayers are dying out  at town halls, despite Government attempts to save them.

A Mail on Sunday investigation has found that just 59 of 271 councils, or 22 per cent, still have a Bible reading or prayer at the start of meetings.

Several have abandoned the practice since atheists won a landmark legal case last year. Many authorities now have only informal prayers or options that do not mention God, such as ‘silent reflection’ or even poetry.

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said: ‘It clear that some politically correct town hall officials are still trying to marginalise faith and impose an illiberal and intolerant secularism. We have given clear guidance that councils can pray and councillors who want to do so should ignore any flawed advice that says otherwise.’

Last year, the High Court ruled that town halls had no legal power to hold formal prayers, although they would be permitted if they were optional.

Mr Pickles immediately said formal prayers could continue under the Localism Act – although the National Secular Society argues that the court judgment has legal precedence.

Under our Freedom of Information Act requests, 19 of the 271 councils  that responded said they had stopped holding formal prayers as a direct result of the case.


Illinois Bishop Stops Gay Activists at Cathedral: ‘Praying for Same-Sex Marriage’ is ‘Blasphemous’

Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki, head of the Catholic diocese of Springfiled, Ill., stopped pro-gay activists from praying for homosexual “marriage”  inside the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on Tuesday, and said in a video statement that “praying for same-sex marriage should be seen as blasphemous and as such will not be permitted in the cathedral.”

“The Rainbow Sash Movement has encouraged Roman Catholics to come to Springfield to ‘have a loud Catholic presence for marriage equality,” said Bp. Paprocki in the video.  “They have announced plans to gather at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception at 4:30 p.m., just before the 5:15 p.m. Mass [on Oct. 22], to stand in the Cathedral and indicate that they are there to pray the rosary for ‘marriage equality.’”

“It is blasphemy to show disrespect or irreverence to God or to something holy,” said the bishop.  “Since Jesus clearly taught that marriage as created by God is a sacred institution between a man and a woman (see Gospel of Matthew 19:4-6 and Mark 10:6-9), praying for same-sex marriage should be seen as blasphemous, and as such will not be permitted in the cathedral.”

The bishop continued, “People wearing a rainbow sash or who otherwise identify themselves as affiliated with the Rainbow Sash Movement will not be admitted into the cathedral and anyone who gets up to pray for same-sex marriage in the cathedral will be asked to leave.”

Because of Bishop Paprocki’s actions and the fact that police were at the cathedral to stop the activists, the Rainbow Sash group did not follow through with its plans on Oct. 22.

Earlier that day, the pro-gay Rainbow Sash Movement rallied at the Illinois State Capitol to advocate for Senate Bill 10, legislation that would legalize “same-sex marriage” in Illinois.

In an Oct. 13 statement posted on their web site, the Rainbow Sash Movement explained the plan for the rally and march and said, “If you come from a specific parish you can title yourselves ‘Friends of ( name of the parish or parishes).’ We encourage Roman Catholics to speak out on this issue, your voices will mean so much to our equality effort. …

"The Rainbow Sash Movement is calling for silent prayer to begin 4:30PM just before the 5:15PM Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. A Rosary for Marriage Equality will be said in silence. By standing up in the Cathedral you will indicate you are there to pray the rosary for Marriage Equality. Let us come together as a spiritual family in prayer after the march.”

The Catholic Church teaches that marriage was set by nature and God as being between one man and one woman. “Marriage is a basic human and social institution,” states the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).  “Though it is regulated by civil laws and church laws, it did not originate either from the church or the state, but from God. Therefore, neither church nor state can alter the basic meaning and structure of marriage.”

The Church teaches that homosexual persons should be treated with the same respect, charity, and dignity as any person but states that homosexual behavior is morally wrong. “Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that ‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered,” states the Catholic Catechism.  “They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.”

In closing his video statement, Bishop Paprocki said, “Of course, our cathedral and parish churches are always open to everyone who wishes to repent their sins and ask for God’s forgiveness.”

There are about 143,000 Catholics in the diocese of Springfield, which stretches across central Illinois,  and 132 parishes. The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, built in 1928, is the primary church of the diocese



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


Sunday, October 27, 2013

Today's installment of multiculturalism in Britain

A woman subjected a five-year-old boy to a two month campaign of abuse in which she sprayed corrosive bathroom cleaner in his face and doused him in boiling coffee.

Tennesh Massaquoi, 29, inflicted a series of injuries, and attacked him by punching and kicking him to the back, legs, torso and chest.  He was also found to be suffering severe bruising and swelling to his genitals.

Massaquoi, of Greater Manchester, was found guilty after a trial on four counts of child cruelty.  She was jailed at Manchester Crown Court for five years.

Police said the boy was taken to hospital on Monday 9 July 2012, for treatment to a burn-like injury to his face.  Staff had been told that he had sprayed a bottle of bathroom cleaner onto his cheek, and were even shown the bottle.

Further examination however uncovered a catalogue of injuries to the boy, who initially was reluctant to answer any questions.

Massaquoi was later arrested and the boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was admitted to Manchester Children’s Hospital for a detailed examination.

In all, the boy suffered a black eye, a full thickness burn to the back of his neck, serious bruising to his back, bruising to his legs, torso and chest, severe bruising and swelling to his genitals, as well as the chemical burns to his face.

Analysis by four independent medical experts concluded the injuries could not have been caused accidentally, despite what the authorities had been told throughout the investigation.

The experts also said that the bruising on his body was likely to have been caused by trauma, more specifically by punches and kicks, and the burn to the back of the neck was most likely to have been from hot liquid being poured onto him deliberately.

They concluded that in all, the abuse spanned over a matter of months.

The boy initially refused to speak about how the injuries were caused, but after days of careful questioning by specially trained officers, who were working closely with Children's Services, he revealed that Massaquoi had kicked him.

He also confirmed that she poured hot coffee on him and said it was done 'on purpose'.

Other disclosures followed, and further inquiries lead to witnesses also putting the injuries down to Massaquoi’s actions.

Detective Constable Kate Burrows of the North Manchester Child Protection Team said: 'Not only was this boy severely injured, he was also a terrified and traumatised child, who has been through more than any five-year-old should ever have to endure.

'The process of treating him and offering support to him needed to be a joint effort between the NHS, Children’s Services and the police. The response to this incident by Children’s Services in particular was outstanding.

'Specially trained police officers needed to not only support the boy through the investigation and subsequent court case, but also ensure there was enough evidence against the person responsible.

'The fact that after a seven-day trial a jury unanimously returned a guilty verdict in less than two hours is a testament to our efforts.

'As for the child, the excellent partnership working between all of the agencies concerned will ensure he has a safe future, and he can get on with enjoying his childhood.'


BBC attacked for giving George's historic christening bottom billing on flagship news broadcast

Sour old Leftists don't understand the widespread affection for the monarchy in Britain -- and the pleasure that great royal occasions give.  They lift people out of the humdrum and the routine

The BBC yesterday came under fire for treating the christening of Prince George as a ‘tail end afterthought’ on its flagship news programmes.

While the historic occasion was featured on front pages around the world, BBC1’s half-hour News at Six and Ten gave it bottom billing.

Both programmes devoted just two minutes and 20 seconds to the ceremony on Wednesday. BBC2’s current affairs show Newsnight failed to mention it at all.

Yesterday, Tory MP Andrew Rosindell said he was ‘appalled’ an event of national importance had been given such scant attention.

He added: ‘The BBC is the national broadcaster. An event such as that should have been given greater prominence.

‘People will be very surprised to see  that it was an “and finally” item bearing in mind that it is a slot usually reserved for non-serious items.’

The BBC’s News at Six found time only  for a short pre-recorded clip about the christening which was narrated by royal correspondent Nicholas Witchell.

Instead of exploring the historical significance of the event or seeking comment from royal experts, he restricted his report to a brief rundown of the guests as they left the Chapel Royal at St James’s Palace.

The short clip was placed last in the news agenda, just before the weather at 6.30pm.

It was deemed even less important than the story of a venomous spider outbreak in a school in Gloucestershire and a segment on proposals to give motorists a five-minute grace period after parking tickets run out.

The News at Ten recycled the same Witchell clip, and also gave it bottom billing. On Newsnight at 10.30pm, the christening was omitted altogether.

Instead, presenter Jeremy Paxman interviewed controversial comic Russell Brand, giving him a platform to espouse his desire for a political revolution.

Tory MP Michael Ellis said: ‘I’m disappointed with the BBC’s coverage on the royal christening, which is an important occasion in the life of the nation. The monarchy is a cherished institution in this country. It attracts more support than almost any other aspect of our national political life.

‘This is the first, formal occasion on which three heirs to the throne are in one place for well over 100 years. The public want to see and hear as much of this as possible.

‘It’s disappointing that the BBC have chosen to relegate this to a tail end afterthought.’

The royal christening was featured on the front pages of seven of the UK’s national newspapers, and on the front pages of newspapers around the world.

ITV News at 6.30pm and 10pm both devoted three minutes to the christening story, giving it top billing in the second half of each programme.

The slot is typically reserved for major stories as the channel needs to regain the attention of its viewers after the advert break.

Tory MP Rob Wilson said: ‘The royal christening was an important national event which newspapers have given huge coverage to in response to their readers’ desire to properly commemorate the event.

‘After a very difficult year, it’s probably fair to suggest that the BBC is struggling to stay in touch with what its audience wants.’

The BBC said it had received four complaints that its news coverage of the royal christening was insufficient.

A spokesman added: ‘The BBC provided extensive coverage of the royal christening across all platforms yesterday, including live coverage on the BBC News Channel, as well as a range of reports across our television bulletins and radio and online.

‘The christening was in the BBC1 bulletin headlines at both 6pm and 10pm, with a full report by our royal correspondent Nick Witchell.

'There were several major news stories yesterday, including the loss of many jobs following the shutdown of Scotland’s biggest industrial site, and David Cameron’s announcement that day that the Government will review green taxes in response to rising energy prices. All our reports are there because we judge them important and of audience interest.’


British council threaten Christmas tree switch on over health and safety fears

A council threatened to ban the switching on of a Christmas lights display due to health and safety fears.  Brighton and Hove City Council threatened to pull the plug on the event over fears that children would have to cross a small road between their local church and the square in order to enjoy the festivities.

Even with a lollipop lady to assist the children it was considered too dangerous, organisers have revealed.

Traditionally the council has taken responsibility for the event in Palmeira Square, Brighton, but have turned their back on it this year.

A local charity decided to step into the breach, but was warned that they could not organise an identical event due to health and safety.

The charity, Brunswick in Bloom, had planned to put on the same show that the council have run for many years - a children's choir performing in St John's Church followed by the switch on of the lights by the Mayor at the tree.  But there were fears that children would have cross the road between the local church and the Christmas tree.

They were told that the lights would be switched on and left on by the workmen installing the tree instead.

The charity, which consists of four volunteers, went back to the drawing board and said they would arrange a lollipop lady to cross the adults and children from the church to the Floral Clock in the Square.  They were told this was still too much of a risk and the chairperson has started to organise plans for local police to be present on the day.

Trisha Gaskell-Watkins, who runs Brunswick in Bloom, said: 'Initially we were very disappointed and upset. “We use the Christmas lights display in our portfolio for the In Bloom so we really need it. The children love watching the lights get switched on as well.”

The council have now agreed to let the event go ahead on their insurance, she said, and police have indicated that they will come and help the children cross the road.

“To be honest if they can't cross that road with their parents they shouldn't be going to school, where they have to cross lots of roads,” she added.  “I suppose when it is an organised event this is what you have to do.

“The road was the main issue for the council I think they said I needed a certified lollipop person, or a registered road safety member or the police.”

Conservative councillor Ann Norman said: “One of the reasons for the council reaching this decision was that there were health and safety concerns that children had to cross a small road.

“The school children are always accompanied by a number of teachers and numerous parents and there are a good number of us councillors who will attend the whole event, carol singing and switching on the lights and are also available to assist with road safety.  “I am pleased this has now been resolved and that common sense has prevailed."


AFA: 'God' Already Gone...

Getting it partially right, Fox News reported this week that the Air Force Academy is contemplating the removal of “so help me God” from its Cadet Honor Oath. However, on the facing page in Contrails, the Cadet handbook, “so help me God” has already been removed from the Cadet and Officer oaths.

As first reported by Mark Alexander last May in “The DoD's Frontal Assault on Faith,” up until 2011, the Cadet Contrails handbook contained the words “so help me God” in bold letters, after the Cadet and Officer oaths. However, those words were removed from the Class of 2016 handbooks. When Alexander inquired with the AFA's Public Affairs Office as to whom removed “so help me God” in the 2011-2012 Contrails, and why, the PAO dodged the question and tersely responded that he could file a “Freedom of Information Act” request. In other words: “Take a hike.”

While Obama's top military appointees at the AFA are claiming its review of “so help me God” in the Honor Oath is the result of a challenge by ultra-leftist Mikey Weinstein's so-called “Military Religious Freedom Foundation” (MRFF), in fact, Weinstein is little more than an atheist proxy for the Obama administration – a surrogate doing the bidding of the most faith-intolerant regime in the history of our Republic. (Of course, if any military officer suggested this was their CINC's agenda, they would be civilians the next day.) The MRFF is dedicated to freedom from religion, not freedom of religion.*

The Obama/MRFF strategy: Given that AFA administrators have already removed “so help me God” from the Contrails Cadet and Officer oaths, they have, in effect, made Weinstein's legal case. It will be difficult for the AFA to argue for retaining “so help me God” in the Honor oath, if they have already started removing it from the Cadet and Officer oaths. Thus, if Weinstein “wins” his case against the AFA, their will be a domino effect eradicating oaths in the other Service Academies – and by extension throughout the Service Branches.

So the question remains, who exactly ordered the removal of “so help me God” from the 2011 Cadet handbook?

Under the pretense of “religious tolerance,” Barack Hussein Obama's administration has been quietly advancing his mandate to remove any expression or manifestation of faith, particularly Christianity, from government forums – first and foremost, the U.S. military. His civilian “leaders” at DoD have ramped up that eradication, even threatening UCMJ charges against military personnel whose expression of faith might be interpreted as “proselytizing.”

Alexander's colleague, Lt. Gen. (Ret.) William “Jerry” Boykin, notes, “The very troops who defend our religious freedom are at risk of having their own taken away. The worst thing we can do is stop soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines, especially for the chaplains, from the free exercise of their faith.”

Eradicating references to God in military oaths, is part of Left's larger objective to replace Rule of Law with the rule of men – because the former is predicated on the principle of Liberty “endowed by our Creator.” Obama's administrators constantly look for ways to undermine Rule of Law by driving wedges between our Liberty and its inherent foundational endowment.

Obama and his Leftist cadres should heed this formative advice regarding faith and our Armed Services: “While we are zealously performing the duties of good citizens and soldiers, we certainly ought not to be inattentive to the higher duties of religion. To the distinguished character of Patriot, it should be our highest glory to add the more distinguished character of Christian.” –George Washington (1778)

*(For example, in 2011, Weinstein, an AFA graduate ('77), demanded and received an apology from the AFA for its cadet support of “Operation Christmas Child,” which assembles and fills millions of shoe boxes with toys, school supplies and other gifts for impoverished children in 130 countries! Weinstein objected because OCC places a Christian tract in those boxes.)



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


Friday, October 25, 2013

Some Pakistani multiculturalism in Britain

It is usual for people of Pakistani or Bengali origin to be referred to as "Asian" in Britain.  Both populations are almost entirely Muslim and were once part of British India

Francesco Hounye had been in the UK for just three days when he was set upon by the gang, who smashed a bottle in his face as well as kicking and punching him in the vicious assault.

Detailed CCTV footage captured the attack on 22-year-old Mr Hounye, who was left covered in blood and needed 23 stitches in his face.

Mr Hounye had been out for the night in the Brick Lane area of East London with a friend he had been staying with when he was attacked.

CCTV images show Mr Hounye and his 23-year-old pal being followed by a number of Asian men as they made their way back to the friend's home in Shadwell, before a confrontation is seen to begin.

Police do not know what sparked an argument, but the exchange quickly became heated and the suspects threatening and aggressive.

One of the men grabbed the bottle that Mr Hounye was drinking from and smashed it against his face.

Mr Hounye desperately tried to escape and sprinted across the street to get away, but the group chased after him and continued to beat him before they eventually ran away.

The victim was taken to the nearby Royal London Hospital with deep slash wounds to his head and around his right ear.  He needed 23 stitches to his face and more stitches internally. He has suffered permanent scarring and a chipped tooth.

In a statement, traumatised Mr Hounye, who had come to London to study, said: 'As a result of this incident I am now scared to go out on my own in London.  'I am a visitor to the UK and was considering continuing my studies here but this incident has made me think twice.

'I feel very emotional about the whole situation. I also now face the rest of my life with the permanent scarring that will be left on my face as a result of this attack.  'Every time I look in the mirror from now on I will be reminded of this incident.'

Despite extensive work by officers to find the suspects, they have not yet been identified, prompting the Metropolitan Police to release CCTV footage from the attack, which occured at around 20 past midnight on June 17 in a bid to track down the thugs behind the assault.

Investigating officer, Detective Constable Ben Mott, said: 'We believe the suspects picked a fight with the victim as he was obviously not from the local area and they took exception to the fact that he was a bit different.  'The victim has an Italian accent, his own style of dress and mannerisms and, when challenged by the Asian males, answered them back.

'They retaliated by grabbing the bottle and launching a vicious attack that has left him scarred for life.

'He had come to the UK to enhance his studies and has been left so shocked and horrified by what happened that he feels unsafe and is unsure if he wants to stay here.

'The CCTV footage is exceptionally clear and I believe the suspects to be local. I would ask people to please look closely at the faces of the attackers and help us identify them. I am positive someone would know who they are from looking at the footage.'

Police described the suspects as Asian and aged in their late teens to early 20s. They are possibly Bengali.  The man who used the bottle was wearing a red and white striped short-sleeved top with black trousers, white trainers and a large watch.


French opposition leader pledges to ban citizenship for children of illegal immigrants born in France

A would-be president of France has pledged to end the right of the children of illegal immigrants born in the country to gain citizenship.

Jean-Francois Cope, the leader of the main opposition party, the UMP, wants to do away with the ancient concept of 'jus soli', or 'right of the soil'.

It means that a child born in France to non-French parents can acquire citizenship at birth if at least one parent was born in France.

Even if this criteria is not met, parents can petition for French nationality for children born on French soil from age 13 if the child has lived in France at least five years.

In Britain, one of a baby's parents has to be a UK citizen, or legally settled in the country, for the child to gain citizenship.

Germany is another country which does not offer immediate legal rights to someone simply because they were born on German territory.

Mr Cope wants France to have similar restrictions because of the amount of illegal immigrants flooding into the country and having children.

Thousands of them are Roma gypsies who live in makeshift camps on the edge of major cities like Paris, often in large families.

Last week the deportation of a 15-year-old Roma schoolgirl along with her parents and five siblings put immigration right back at the top of the political agenda.

Mr Cope, a protege of former conservative president Nicolas Sarkozy, said he would introduce a new parliamentary bill to cancel automatic nationality for children of illegal immigrants by the end of the year.

'Children born in France to parents illegally on French soil cannot automatically become French,' said Mr Cope. 'It's incomprehensible and it's hardly seen anywhere else in Europe.'

As UMP leader, Mr Cope is likely to run for president himself in 2017.

All parties - including the governing Socialists - are doing all they can to win votes from the far right National Front (FN), which is enjoying a renaissance in France.  It has long pushed for a reform of the immigration system, to include the systematic deportation of illegal immigrants, and large cuts in the number being allowed into France.

The FN is making huge electoral strides thanks mainly to the failing policies of Socialist President Francois Hollande.

Many expect the FN to do particularly well during upcoming municipal and European elections next year.

Anti-immigrant rhetoric reached new heights earlier this month when Interior Minister Manuel Valls suggested that Roma gypsies could 'non integrate' and should be deported.  His hardline is supported by the vast majority of French people, according to recent polls, although there have been demonstrations against his policies by students.

Wednesday, Mr Valls said proposals to overhaul France's asylum system in depth would be submitted to the government by mid-November, following several months of consultations.

The reform will seek to shorten the amount of time between an application for asylum and the judge's final decision.


Manufactured indignation:  'Redskins' foes take offense where none is intended

by Jeff Jacoby

AMERICANS ARE are sharply divided over all kinds of things these days, but whether the Washington Redskins need a new name doesn't seem to be one of them. In an Associated Press poll earlier this year, 79 percent of respondents said the team's name should remain unchanged; only 11 percent wanted "Redskins" to be replaced.

I'd have thought it was good news that four-fifths of Americans can still agree on something. The grievance industry sees things differently.

The online journal Slate announced in August that it would no longer use the name "Redskins" to refer to Washington's NFL team; two other journals followed suit a day later. To his credit, Slate's editor David Plotz acknowledged that "the word 'redskin' has a relatively innocent history" and that the team wasn't named to impugn American Indians but to invoke their bravery and toughness. Nonetheless, he wrote, the name today is "tacky and dated" – it's like using "Negroes" or "colored people" to refer to blacks. "Would any team, naming itself today, choose 'Redskins' or adopt the team's Indian-head logo?" asked Plotz. "Of course it wouldn't."

By that reasoning, Slate should also be banning references to the United Negro College Fund and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. The term "lady golfers" has certainly grown tacky and dated. Is that an argument for changing the "L" in LPGA to something more fashionable?

NBC's Bob Costas jumped into the fray during the Redskins-Cowboys game last week, telling viewers in his halftime commentary that "no matter how benign" the intent of the Washington team's owner and fans, the name "Redskins" today can only be regarded as "an insult, a slur." President Obama weighed in too. "If I were the owner of the team and I knew that there was a name … that was offending a sizable group of people, I'd think about changing it," he told an interviewer.

On Capitol Hill, meanwhile, a group of lawmakers — including the Maryland congresswoman whose district includes the Redskins' stadium — have signed on to a bill that would effectively outlaw the team's name by stripping it of trademark protection. And in case that weren't sufficiently over the top, the New York Daily News on Thursday published an incendiary cartoon depicting a Nazi swastika and a Confederate flag alongside a Washington Redskins banner. The trio is labeled: "Archaic Symbols of Pride and Heritage."

Reasonable men and women don't take offense where no offense is intended, and they don't gratuitously give offense merely to be offensive. But people who traffic in manufactured indignation aren't reasonable. It's easier to parade their enlightened sensitivity, after all, if other people's sensitivities can be trampled underfoot. The enthusiastic crowds singing "Hail to the Redskins" are football fans, not Nazis or defenders of slavery. They're not the same thing, even if the sensitivity posse has a hard time remembering that.

I'm not a sports fan. I have no interest in Redskins football. And I have no trouble understanding why the team's name genuinely rubs some people the wrong way. But there is no limit to what may rub people the wrong way. Start scrapping names and emblems on the basis that someone finds them offensive and you'll be scrapping names and emblems forever. Institutions and societies can't function that way. No one is guaranteed the right to go through life unoffended. You may not like the name of a sports team, or a company logo, or a school's mascot. But disapproval isn't an argument, let alone a definitive one.

Why don't four-fifths of Americans — many American Indians among them — think the Washington Redskins need a new name? Not because they're in the habit of using "redskin" as a racial designation for Native Americans, but because they grasp that context matters, and that while a word used one way may not be respectful, used a different way it shouldn't offend reasonable people.

These name-and-logo battles are nothing new.  Twenty years ago a group of students at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst demanded that the school change its logo — a Revolutionary Minuteman — to something more sensitive than, as one of the protesters characterized it, "a white man with a gun."

The UMass chancellor's first reaction was to meekly acquiesce. "It's an issue we should look at," he agreed. It took a snort of derision from Governor William Weld, who mocked the demand as "political correctness run amok," to stiffen the chancellor's spine. The Minuteman remained. And the protesting students, one hopes, learned a useful lesson: Being offended isn't the same as being right. "Redskins" foes, take note.


Angel of Woolwich 'threatened with arrest' after tackling yobs

The politically correct British police again

A woman dubbed the 'Angel of Woolwich' after she confronted the alleged killers of soldier Lee Rigby says she was threatened with arrest for intervening when a group of boys threw eggs at her home.

Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, 48, confronted the soldier's alleged killers seconds after he was slaughtered in a London street while on a visit to the capital.

But Ingrid, who lives in Helston, Cornwall, now claims she was threatened with arrest herself after a group of young boys began pelting her house with eggs and stones.

The half-French mother of two says she has been targeted by local youths because of her accent ever since moving to the area three years ago, but that it had become worse after she came to media attention following the Woolwich attack.

Ms Loyau-Kennett told reporters she dialled 999 and went outside to "calmly" remonstrate with the group of boys aged between eight and 12 after seeing them outside her home on Monday evening.

But when police arrived she claims they took the boys' side rather than hers.  "The police were saying that I should stop ringing them and that I had no proof. He told me that if I didn't calm down I would be arrested,” she said.  "They made me out to be the wrongdoer - he just wouldn't understand my side of the story and that I was actually the victim.”

She added: "[The gang has] been throwing eggs and stones at my house for months. On Monday night, I heard something hit my wall and that's when I caught them.  "Sometimes I just find the eggs all over my walls the following day, but this time I managed to catch them in the act.

"I asked them why they continued to harass me and they began shouting at me. One of the young boys pulled his trousers down and showed me his bottom. Then they ran away.

"I called the police as soon as the incident happened. They arrived after 20 minutes which was useless as by the time they got here, the kids had left.”

Devon and Cornwall Police confirmed they were called out and a woman was given advice about her behaviour, but denied she was threatened with arrest.  A spokesman said: "At no point was she threatened with an arrest. The policemen gave the woman advice and left it at that. It is not appropriate to comment any further on the matter.

"We are aware of community tensions on the estate and are stepping up patrols with a visibility police presence."



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