Friday, December 21, 2018

Neo-Nazi couple who named their son after Adolf Hitler jailed for membership of far-Right group

No free speech in authoritarian Britain.  These people have been jailed for their opinions only.  They have harmed nobody.  And psychologists have long known that there is a negligible relationship between attitudes and behaviour in racial matters

A fanatical Neo-Nazi couple who named their baby son after Adolf Hitler have been jailed for membership of a terrorist group that a judge warned wants to use "serious violence and murder" to "overthrow of democracy" in the UK.

Adam Thomas, 22, and Claudia Patatas, 38, were found guilty of being members of the extreme Right-wing organisation National Action, which was banned in 2016.

The jury was told that Thomas and Patatas gave their child the middle name "Adolf", which Thomas said was in "admiration" of Hitler, and the couple had Swastika scatter cushions in their home.

Thomas and Patatas were jailed at Birmingham Crown Court for six years and six months, and five years, respectively.

The sentencing judge said both had "a long history of violent racist beliefs".

Their close friend, Darren Fletcher, who admitted National Action membership before trial, was also jailed for five years for the same offence.

In all, six people were sentenced on Tuesday, for being members of what Judge Melbourne Inman QC described as a group with "horrific aims".

He said: "Its aims and objectives are the overthrow of democracy in this country by serious violence and murder, and the imposition of a Nazi-style state which would eradicate whole sections of society by such violence and mass murder."

Last week, the court heard the prosecution claim that Fletcher had taught his daughter to give a Nazi salute, and that he sent a message to Patatas saying "finally got her to do it".

Photographs recovered from their address also showed Thomas cradling his newborn son while wearing the hooded white robes of a Ku Klux Klansman.

In conversation with another National Action member, Patatas said "all Jews must be put to death", while Thomas had once told his partner he found "all non-whites intolerable".

Former Amazon security guard Thomas, and Patatas, a wedding photographer originally from Portugal who also wanted to "bring back concentration camps", were found guilty after a seven-week trial.

Thomas, a twice-failed Army applicant, was also convicted on a majority verdict of having a terrorist manual, namely the Anarchist's Cookbook, which jurors heard contained instructions on making "viable" bombs.

The couple, of Waltham Gardens, Banbury, Oxfordshire, held hands and wept as they were sentenced.

Daniel Bogunovic, 27, of Crown Hills Rise, Leicester, a leading member in National Action's Midlands chapter, was also jailed. He was convicted of membership of National Action after standing trial with Patatas and Thomas, and sentenced to six years and four months.

He was described by prosecutors as a "committed National Action leader, propagandist and strategist", within the group's Midlands cell.

Two other men, cyber security worker and National Action Midlands cell "banker" Joel Wilmore, 24, and van driver Nathan Pryke, 26, described as the group's "security enforcer", were also sent to prison.

Fletcher, 28, of Kitchen Lane, Wednesfield, Wolverhampton, Wilmore, 24, of Bramhall Road, Stockport, Greater Manchester, and Pryke, 26, of Dartford Road, March, Cambridge, all admitted membership of the banned group prior to the trial.

Pryke was handed a jail term of five years and five months, and Wilmore was sentenced to five years and 10 months.

Opening the case, Barnaby Jameson QC, prosecuting, said all six defendants had been members post-ban and taken part in the organisation's chat groups, which were staging posts for comments of "virulent racism, particularly from Thomas, Patatas and Fletcher".

He added: "Leaders Pryke, Wilmore and Bogunovic were more circumspect in their views but on occasion the true depth of their racial hatred leeched out."


Why the National Enquirer Probe Threatens Free Speech

Buried in all the hoopla over the Michael Cohen plea deal is something that should frighten any member of the press. The federal government’s criminal probe has included editorial decisions made by the National Enquirer about the purchasing and publication of various stories from women who claimed to have had affairs with Donald Trump more than a decade ago.

Let’s put the personal morality of paying off porn stars and Playmates for their silence aside. Whether these are campaign expenditures or illegal donations as opposed to a personal matter is, thanks to the hairy mess that is campaign-finance law, now hotly disputed. There is actually a bigger issue here: The First Amendment.

For all the complaints that come from some media personalities about how Trump is a threat to freedom of the press, perhaps we should be looking at those who are investigating Trump instead. The criminalization of the National Enquirer’s exercising its editorial prerogatives is a dangerous precedent and could enable some renegade bureaucrat to investigate other outlets.

The accusation is simple: A decision to publish (or not publish) a story would be viewed as a campaign contribution. When The Patriot Post covered the big differences between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in 2016, First Amendment issues played a big role, and Hillary came out the poorer. Under the perversions espoused by some, that would have been seen as a campaign contribution.

Far-fetched interpretation? Well, in that piece, it was also noted that Democrats on the Federal Election Commission were targeting conservative media and talk radio. Imagine a Democrat-controlled FEC or Department of Justice probe on The Patriot Post team for deciding to drop George Will.

We don’t have to imagine the Democrats using the power of the government to target political opponents. Look at Andrew Cuomo’s use of financial regulations against the NRA. Look at the IRS scandal that the Obama administration got away with. Look at the John Doe investigations in Wisconsin. These are just the high-profile cases. Granted, the NRA’s suit has gone to discovery, and under Trump the DOJ settled allegations, and the Wisconsin Supreme Court put an end to the witch hunt against conservative groups, but the incalculable damage has been done.

How many Second Amendment supporters or other conservatives have decided not to get involved because they don’t want to risk the wrath of some Lois Lerner-type in a cubicle who could kick off a process that could lead to crushing legal fees in the best case of a successful defense? How much advocacy was delayed or halted because of the need to deal with investigations? We can never truly know.

It’s not as if a prominent Democrat didn’t have his political future aided by a decision to bury a story. In 2005, then-Senator Barack Obama was photographed in the company of Louis Farrakhan at a Congressional Black Caucus event by journalist Askia Muhammed. The photographer chose to bury the photo in order to protect Obama’s political future. It stayed buried for more than a dozen years, until January 2018. That photo, had it come to light a decade sooner, would have killed Obama’s campaign — and Muhammed’s comments indicate he knew it would have.

Somehow, we get the feeling that had Muhammed been investigated by the Justice Department, the FEC, or Congress, the folks who are eagerly hoping that the Enquirer payoffs can bring down President Trump would be much less eager to see “justice” done. So, the question that some conservative Trump critics must answer is why they would seek to subject conservatives to yet another witch hunt?

That is already on the agenda. According to former Investor’s Business Daily reporter Paul Sperry, Democrats are planning to investigate conservative media outlets for “ties to Russia.” In reality, the real “crime” will be supporting President Trump. Even without a successful prosecution, the process itself will serve as punishment for those who dare oppose progressives, as was the case with the IRS and John Doe abuses.

There is only one way to stop this: We must put aside the grievances and disagreements that have emerged since the Trump candidacy began in 2015 and draw a line in the sand. The right of media outlets to make editorial decisions that are protected by the First Amendment must be defended.

It is better to have to explain editorial decisions with our free-speech rights intact than to accept a double standard and find our ability to make the argument extremely limited at best. If conservatives can’t make the argument, how can they win debates, much less elections?


Sweden's 'man-free' feminist music festival is found guilty of discrimination by authorities

A 'man free' feminist music festival in Sweden has been found guilty of discrimination, it has emerged.

The event, called Statement, was held in Gothenburg in August this year having been billed as 'the world's first major music festival for women, non-binary and transgender only'.

But describing the festival as 'male-free' was a violation of anti-discrimination legislation, Sweden's Discrimination Ombudsman (DO) has ruled.

Men were not prevented from buying a ticket or entering the festival grounds but male members of artists' entourages and the likes of technicians and managers were reportedly restricted to a so-called 'man-pen' in a backstage area.

DO press officer Clas Lundstedt said in a statement: 'It is important to point out what an infringement is. These are the statements made before the festival, what they wrote on their website.

Lundstedt said nobody suffered damage as a result of Statement saying men were not welcome and there will be no penalty for organisers.

The festival was billed as being a 'safe space' featuring 'cis-men free' artists, security and catering. The term cisgender refers to a man or a woman whose gender matches the sex they were at birth. A trans or non-binary person is someone whose gender does not conform to their sex assigned at birth.

Swedish comedian Emma Knyckare came up with the idea for the festival after a huge number of sexual offences were reported at Bravalla, Sweden's biggest music festival, last year.

No such crimes were reported during Statement, which carries pictures of women dancing and celebrating together.

Lundstedt added: 'Clearly, we believe that sexual abuse, especially at festivals, is a serious problem. So we are looking forward to trying to correct this. However, it shouldn't happen in a way that violates the law, which their statements in the media and their website do.'

In response, Statement said on Facebook that it was unfazed by the ruling and was 'busy changing the world'.

'It's sad that what 5,000 women, non-binaries and transgender experienced as a life-changing festival, made a few cis-men lose it completely.

'The success of the Statement festival shows that is exactly what we need, and the DO's verdict doesn't change this fact. Otherwise, we have no comments. We are busy changing the world.'


State Bills of Rights Have the Real Protections

By presidential proclamation, December 15 is Bill of Rights Day. President Donald Trump urges Americans to take time to “recognize the key role of the [federal] Bill of Rights in protecting our individual liberties and limiting the power of government.”

While we are better off for having the first ten amendments to the Constitution, it is intellectually dishonest for the media and our national leaders to pay such obeisance to the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights is a mere shadow of the protections the states originally urged Congress to pass and pales in comparison to the rights guaranteed in many state constitutions.

James Madison, the primary architect of the Bill of Rights, merely sought to mollify Anti-Federalist critics of the Constitution without imposing real limits on the powers of the federal government.

The various states had sent Congress many substantive amendments that would have limited federal power and protected individual liberty. For example, Virginia offered a lengthy amendment aimed at limiting federal judicial power. Massachusetts suggested amendments on the power of taxation as well as prohibiting gargantuan congressional districts, where the people would have little chance of truly knowing their representatives. New York wanted an amendment requiring two thirds of Congress to approve any borrowing on the credit of the United States.

Unfortunately, Madison and Congress ignored these proposals. Madison followed the advice of Samuel Johnston, the governor of North Carolina, who had counseled that amendments should be “a little Flourish & Dressing” and no more.

Americans desiring real protections and limits on federal power were not deceived by the final product. Virginian William Grayson, writing to Patrick Henry, complained that Congress’s proposed amendments “are so mutilated & gutted that in fact they are good for nothing.” Theodorick Bland of Virginia lamented that the congressmen “have not made one single material” alteration to the Constitution. South Carolina’s Thomas Tudor Tucker thought the amendments sent to the states were “calculated merely to amuse, or rather to deceive.”

Amusement and deception aside, today, when we think of the Bill of Rights and landmark cases, we typically think of restrictions on state power. It does not occur to modern Americans that the Bill of Rights originally applied only to the national government. As the preamble to the Bill of Rights declares, “further declaratory and restrictive clauses” were adopted because the state conventions wanted some security to “prevent misconstruction and abuse of” powers delegated to the national government. The people of the states were satisfied with their own bills of rights and restrictions on state power appearing in the various state constitutions.

It was not until 1925 that the U.S. Supreme Court began applying selected provisions of the Bill of Rights against the states – a practice that is still questioned by a number of legal scholars.

While most Americans have some general familiarity with notable provisions of the Bill of Rights, such as guarantees to free speech, the right to bear arms, and the free exercise of religion, it’s doubtful they have any comprehension of what is contained in the bills of rights of their home states. This is a pity. Most state bills of rights have far more extensive protections than those found in the federal version.

For example, in addition to the “usual” protections associated with its federal cousin, New Hampshire’s bill of rights recognizes that the people possess the “natural rights” of acquiring and using property; are entitled to an “open, accessible, accountable and responsive” government; and have a constitutional right to revolution if government becomes oppressive.

South Carolina’s bill of rights provides constitutional protections for crime victims, prohibits imprisonment for debt, and guarantees court review of the decisions of administrative agencies.

California’s bill of rights specifically secures the property rights of noncitizens, the right of a victim to receive restitution from the perpetrator of a crime, and the right to have all relevant evidence introduced in criminal proceedings.

Americans should pause on December 15 and contemplate their rights. But their time would be better spent on the texts of their state constitutions rather than idolizing the “Flourish & Dressing” of James Madison’s offering.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


No comments: