Thursday, April 09, 2020

Virginia Clerk Is Locked Up for Shooting at 3 Masked Robbers in His Store. Not a Typo

A Virginia store clerk heard a crash that sounded like a car had crashed into the place at 4:30 a.m. on Sunday. He grabbed a gun and shot at three masked men he found stealing merchandise and cash from the shop.

When it was over, the clerk was the one in handcuffs. He now sits in jail on no bail, charged with crimes for which he could be locked up for 20 years. Those charges include: "Malicious Wounding, Reckless Handling of a Firearm and Violation of a Protective Order."

Police say they'll get around to charging the robbers later.

What's wrong with this picture?

The police incident report says that this is what got 33-year-old Hamzeh Abushariah sent to jail,

The preliminary investigation indicates that three subjects forced entry into a business and began stealing cash and merchandise. An employee inside a secure back room heard the break in, retrieved a firearm, opened the door to the sales floor and discharged the weapon, striking one juvenile subject. The employee retreated to the back room but reentered the sales floor and discharged his weapon again as the subjects were attempting to flee the business.

The Commonwealth's attorney told WJLA-TV that there's more to the story:

“Suffice it to say, there is evidence we are not at liberty to share that support the charges, the decision was not made lightly, and we ask the public not to rush to judgment on what is very much a live investigation.”

The clerk's boss, Jowan Zuber, says they've got the wrong person locked up. He told Fox News's Tucker Carlson that the police asked his employee why he didn't run away:

"When the police came, we thought we were in the right. Three masked men, 4:30 a.m. on a Sunday morning...The cops are treating us like we're the ones who caused the harm! This is a very sad day for America today. As an American citizen, practicing the Second Amendment to protect the store and the lives and, not only that, the people [living] upstairs. Do you know what the police officers told him? Why didn't you run out the back door? And guess what? When we checked the back door, there was a book bag and two rocks and a pole. What were going to do with that? If he would have gone out the back he would have met up with the three masked men and maybe shot them. Then what? He would be doing 60 years in jail?"

Abushariah, who was staying at the shop because his Washington, D.C., apartment complex had several coronavirus cases, apparently shot the suspects (who turned out to be juveniles) as they fled. That's what police say.

The clerk also had a "protective order" against him, which may prevent him from possessing a gun. Are Arlington prosecutors now claiming that a person with a protective order may not defend himself against three masked thugs who crashed their way into a store and began ransacking it?


Evangelicals Are the Real Virus

Samaritan’s Purse has opened up a tent hospital to help New Yorkers deal with Coronavirus by taking overflow from Mount Sinai hospital. But Bill de Blasio and others are concerned. From Gothamist:

Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city will keep a close eye on the Christian fundamentalist group operating a field hospital in Central Park, amid growing fears that some New Yorkers could face discrimination and substandard care from the religious organization.

Gothamist notes that Samaritan’s Purse is run by a “virulently” anti-gay and Islamophobic pastor Franklin Graham. Got that? The real virus is Evangelicalism. Councilmen are promising to “monitor” the situation, fearing the practice of discrimination or substandard care.

The New York Times ran an op-ed earlier this week blaming Evangelicals for inflicting “coronavirus hell” on Americans though they’ve since changed the title.

For decades, progressives have been saying: “Why are Evangelicals so obsessed with sex? Why can’t they just do good works and help the needy?” But with New York in crisis, progressives have apparently decided that death would be better than letting disgusting, presumptively-criminal Evangelicals help them.

It’s interesting that Samaritan’s Purse is named after the Good Samaritan, who, in Christ’s parable, helps the injured man on the side of the road — despite the fact that he, as a Samaritan, is considered unclean and not part of the House of Israel.

At least New York is not the type of medieval society that blames hated religious minorities for plagues.


'This Is Not Nazi Germany or Soviet Russia Where You Are Asked For Your Papers!' Says Maine Sheriff

Maine's Franklin County Sheriff Scott Nichols has a strong message for the Governor of Maine, Janet Mills, who issued "stay-at-home" orders with threats of police punishment if not followed. Sheriff Nichols issued a statement on the Franklin County Facebook page saying in no uncertain terms he will not follow the unconstitutional order.

"We will not be setting up a Police State. PERIOD," he wrote. "The Sheriff’s Office will not purposefully go out and stop vehicles because they are on the road or stop and ask why people are out and about. To do so puts our officers at risk. This is not Nazi Germany or Soviet Russia where you are asked for your papers!"

The sheriff's announcement comes as a welcome sign to Americans who have been arrested for inane things like praying outside, surfing, or trying to drive to work. Someone has to stand up to the unconstitutional directives that are being handed down daily by government officials and it will fall on the sheriffs to uphold what they know to be their legal and lawful duties, none of which involve trampling the rights of citizens.

"Please use common sense during this executive order. We are more interested in the safety and well-being of the public as well as our officers at this time. With that being said, we are sworn to uphold the Constitution and laws of the State - for any unlawful act/situation, arrestees will be taken into custody and transported for fingerprinting and bail."

Nichols made it clear that he only intends to arrest for matters of law-breaking, and nothing else. Executive orders aren't laws. He finished his announcement with words of encouragement for his constituents: "Most of you are doing a fantastic job – we appreciate that! Please look out for one another, especially the elderly and shut-ins. Please be a good neighbor/citizen always showing compassion. Please be kind especially on social media, negativity online only adds to the stress people are currently experiencing."

Nichols signed this brave decree with his name and followed it with "Of the People, For the People."

The sheriffs of America have great power and authority where unconstitutional executive overreach is concerned. All the sheriffs of our nation should start conferencing with Sheriff Nichols immediately to learn more about the limits of their offices. Frankly, I'm surprised it took this long for one to come forward with this common-sense response to unlawful acts by state officials. Perhaps a good exercise for people stuck on lockdown would be to call their local sheriff's office and find out where the local sheriff stands on this very important issue of the people's rights.


Coronavirus crisis has cut our tolerance for the usual spin

By Neil Mitchell, Australian radio Presenter

OPINION: The longer I am in lockdown the more frustrated I become by the parade of experts assessing the virus as anything from an apocalypse to a mild flu. The fact is, they don't where we are headed. Nobody does. It is the nature of what is unfolding. How can anybody predict the unpredictable and intelligently assess the unprecedented?

So, what follows are not the words of an expert, but the thoughts of a person who has professionally observed life and politics for nearly 50 years. These may be perceptive words, or stupid. I don't know. But perhaps they will provoke some discussion behind the locked doors:

In a crisis like this we need direct answers, honest answers, and none of the usual glib self-congratulation we have come to expect and accept

I think and hope that as we emerge from this in a year, or whenever, that Australia will enter a new era of politics.
Because I believe this crisis and focus on our own mortality has cut our tolerance for the usual spin, political salesmanship and self-justification which has previously masqueraded as leadership.

It surfaced in several interviews I did last week. Politicians were dodging and spinning and waffling as is their way. Normally I might tolerate that and then try to bring them to the point. Last week, there was no room for tolerance, and I said so. It was an insult to the audience.

Victorian learner driver fined more than $1600 for "non-essential" travel during COVID-19 shutdown
In a crisis like this we need direct answers, honest answers, and none of the usual glib self-congratulation we have come to expect and accept.

If a politician is not up to that, then get out. If they can't identify that now is the time to treat the public decently and like adults, rather than children to be conned, dump them.

At times, the Prime Minister has struggled with directness. In fairness he is massively tired and must feel almost crushed by the responsibility. He is not only mapping the destiny of the country but his own place in history. He will be remembered kindly or otherwise in the way we view a war time prime minister.

Daniel Andrews, the Victorian premier, has been more direct and blunt in his language. But again, to be fair, he has done that hours after we heard the details of national cabinet decisions from the PM. And he has still found time for a little political one-upmanship.

Perhaps it is lockdown delusion, but I see hope we will emerge with a breed of politicians understanding that the best way to deal with the public is to be yourself, be direct, and don't spin.

Public tolerance for the old methods of political trickery will be very low. And there will be much painful work to be done as we build economic recovery. Budgets will be cut and lobbyists will scream.

I believe the public will require and demand a new political discourse, a new trust and an understanding that they must not be treated as fools.

A politician will eventually identify that and embrace it. And that person may deserve the title "leader"



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


Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Some suspicious thoughts from a reader (A retired medical specialist in Texas)

I haven’t heard in the news what is obvious to me:

1). Trump’s unwillingness to overrule local districts (which is what the constitution supports) has unleashed a terror by local officials (Little Napolean Syndrome).

One case of many: a regulation in Austin to discontinue building (with an exception for building new homes for the homeless).

State of Texas has put medical doctors out of business. (Only allowing “emergency surgery” - which pays almost nothing. (Blacks shooting each other, Rednecks driving unrestrained and drunk).

2). I believe the efforts by the Dems with their branch, the MSM, have been VERY SUCCESSFUL IN GENERATING PANIC, AND ECONOMIC DISTRESS.

I believe that the Dems have discovered a new political method to again cause panic, and  public unrest, the next time a “new virus” is “discovered”. I believe the precursor of the present coronavirus has been around a while, and not surprising that the Chicoms saw this as a way to cooperate with the Dems and the MSM to generate panic.

Hooray!  His Eminence has been cleared

Cleared unanimously by seven judges! I said from the beginning that his conviction was a travesty.  It was only hatred of his church that kept him in jail

Cardinal George Pell will walk free from jail today after the High Court quashed his conviction for sexually abusing two choirboys. 

Australia's most senior Catholic was convicted in 2018 of performing sex acts on the boys in Saint Patrick's Cathedral in Melbourne in 1996.

The decision overturns an earlier ruling by the chief justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria, Justice Anne Ferguson, president of the Court of Appeal Justice Chris Maxwell, and Justice Mark Weinberg.

It had taken them nine weeks to come to their decision. It took the High Court a little under four to reverse it.

Cardinal Pell was not in the court room in Brisbane for the hearing and will be told the news over the phone by his lawyer.

The court ruled that the trial's jury 'ought to have entertained a doubt' that Cardinal Pell may not have been guilty.

Much of Cardinal Pell's case centred on whether he had an opportunity to commit the offences at all.

Cardinal Pell's barristers had long argued it was not possible for him to be alone in the sacristies only a few minutes after the end of Mass.

Numerous witnesses took to the witness box at his trial to back the notion the crimes could not have been committed. 

In a summary of the decision handed down by the High Court on Tuesday, it stated the Supreme Court judges' analysis at his original appeal 'failed to engage with the question of whether there remained a reasonable possibility that the offending had not taken place, such that there ought to have been a reasonable doubt as to the applicant's guilt'.

Cardinal Pell's successful appeal is likely to bring an end to the ongoing saga, which has dragged on for years across four court jurisdictions.

A vindicated Cardinal Pell issued a statement to the media shortly after the ruling was made. 'I have consistently maintained my innocence while suffering from a serious injustice,' he said. 'This has been remedied today with the High Court’s unanimous decision. I look forward to reading the Judgment and reasons for the decision in detail.'

Cardinal Pell said he held no ill will to his accuser. 'I do not want my acquittal to add to the hurt and bitterness so many feel; there is certainly hurt and bitterness enough,' he said.

'However, my trial was not a referendum on the Catholic Church; nor a referendum on how Church authorities in Australia dealt with the crime of paedophilia in the Church. 'The point was whether I had committed these awful crimes, and I did not.'

Victoria Police issued a statement on Tuesday declaring it respected the decision of the High Court and praised the the 'tireless work' on the case by its Taskforce Sano, which brought the case against Cardinal Pell.

The jury in the original trial found Cardinal Pell guilty of sexually abusing two boys in the priests' sacristy at Melbourne's St Patrick's Cathedral after presiding over one of his first Sunday masses as archbishop in the 1990s.

The jury further accepted he abused one of the boys a second time in a corridor at the rear of the cathedral after another Sunday mass.

Cardinal Pell was jailed in March last year for six years with a non-parole period of three years and eight months.

Since then, he has been caged predominantly at Melbourne Assessment Prison in the heart of the city, but was recently moved to Barwon Prison, which houses some of the nation's vilest criminals.

There he has spent his days locked in isolation away from the jail population which no doubt would have treated him as a prize scalp.


Peak Buffoonery: Paddleboarder in Ocean Off Malibu Is Arrested for Not Socially Distancing

A couple of weeks ago, thousands of people swarmed the Southern California beaches to get some fresh air and get their minds off the coronavirus for awhile.

In response to some people not socially distancing,  the Commissars of California closed the beaches.

Since then, miles of police tape have been deployed to cut off parking lots, bike paths, hiking trails, and mountain-bike trails to prevent people from going to these places and getting a little exercise for fear they may get too close to each other.

Drones are being sent up to spy on scofflaws.

There's no surfing allowed. Surfing. A sport that requires social distancing is outlawed. Thousands of kids in Southern California who are required to get physical activity to get their virtual school PE credits are not allowed to surf.

And don't even think about standing on the other side of a tennis court and hitting balls.

Forget swimming, the pools are closed.

Which brings us to a paddleboarder in the Malibu area of LA County.  To be clear, he was in the ocean off the coast of Malibu, minding his own business and paddleboarding by himself.

Well, he was alone until the cops and lifeguards came. They corralled the paddleboarder with the use of two lifeguard boats.

KTLA reports the arrested paddleboarder was booked and then released and ordered to appear in court:

Officials did not release any identifying information on the man. He could face a $1,000 fine, up to six months in jail, or both.

So far, the state order has not been widely enforced by police agencies, but this isn't the first time this week a Southern California man has faced consequences for being in the ocean.

According to the Los Angeles Times, a surfer in Manhattan Beach was fined $1,000 last weekend after similarly ignoring repeated orders to exit the ocean.

Some people were baffled.  "Two guys together in a small boat chase down man all by himself to ensure proper social distancing."

But the ocean isn't the only thing being watched for scofflaws. LA Mayor Eric Garcetti has announced plans for a spying program to look for businesses that are open. He announced this week that he has already shut off the water and power to eight businesses that he didn't deem "essential."

The Commissars of California mean well. We all know they're just trying to keep us from getting too close to others in this pandemic, but with these kinds of shenanigans, they run the risk of open rebellion against what are plainly dumb laws. And when the laws become a mockery of themselves, we've reached peak buffoonery.


Oregon Court Affirms Conviction of Journalist Who Pulled Gun to Stop Advancing Antifa Mob

Before Ann Coulter, Ben Shapiro, Milo Yiannopoulos, Andy Ngo, and any number of people were bullied off the stage and silenced by the rampaging antifa mob, there was Mike Strickland.

Before most people had ever heard of the far-left group, the Portland videographer was recording the antics, ridiculous utterances, and violent actions of this mob, writing about them and selling his videos to news outlets, some of which went national. Strickland put the videos on his YouTube channel called "Laughing at Liberals."

He's the first person I'd ever heard utter the name "antifa."

Strickland had been following the far left for years. He started to watch them after the 2010-11 tea party rallies began attracting leftists, such as the International Socialist Organization (ISO), who would show up and attempt to drown out the public (and permitted) rallies.

And the mob was getting bigger and more dangerous.

Since 2003, I have been watching the far-left Portland mob, "Portland Professional Protesters" as I dubbed them, go from a collection of Friday-at-4pm drum circles to a rougher group of Wobblies, anti-war Bush-is-Hitler protesters, Earth Firsters, ISO types, anti-Israel pro-PLO America haters, assorted anarchists, monkey-wrenchers and eco- and animal-terrorist organizations. Many of the usual Portland Professional Protester groups feature fists on their logos and flags like the good communists and socialists they are.

They camped in front of the stores that sold fur and conspired against restaurants selling foie gras – screeching day after day until enough customers were repelled that the legal businesses went under. The city never lifted a finger to help.

They took over Portland City Hall, held illegal protests, closed freeways, halted traffic, and plotted terrorist activities. They firebombed SUV sellers, torched ski lodges, cold-cocked people on the streets, set fires, committed acts of vandalism, and engaged, like the continuing criminal enterprise I believe they are, in the doxxing of, defaming, and lying about people who dared show them on video and talk about their antics.

The City of Portland basically ignored the protesters even when they were under its nose, as was Occupy Portland in 2011 when union-backed "protesters" commandeered and did millions of dollars in damage to a park in front of city hall.

And now they're a black-clad violent mob.

Mike Strickland put a mirror up to those people and showed them who they were. They didn't like it. They called him a "snitch." They admitted in court that they conspired to get him thrown out of "their" public protests. And that's where the problems started.

Conservative Journalist Andy Ngo Beaten Up and Hit With Cement by Antifa in Portland, Says Police Did Nothing
In June 2016, at a rally and candlelight vigil for the Orlando terrorist shooting, Strickland was shooting for a client when he was confronted by a group (some of whom knew him) that took offense that he would dare come to such a solemn occasion. Codswallop. As he tried to record, they sought to ruin his video by crowding in front of his camera, screaming, yelling, and talking. They called Strickland – stop me if you've heard this before – a "racist" and "homophobe."

(The "racist" label came from when Strickland put together a series of videos exposing a series of classes at the local community college demonizing white people. Fox News featured them. The "homophobe" accusation supposedly came from his deigning to attend the Pulse Nightclub observance.)

One month later in July 2016, at a Black Lives Matter - Don't Shoot Portland public rally and protest, a mob of antifa and BLM protesters admitted (in court) that they would get Strickland thrown out of their rally because they didn't want the journalist recording them. Strickland was shooting the event as he usually did with all of his equipment – including his properly concealed pistol, a Glock, for which he had a concealed carry license.

A mob of Antifa members surrounded him, roughed him up, and then told him, "You need to get the f**k out of here!" Even though Strickland backed away from the thugs in the larger protest, he continued to shoot video. As he was leaving, the mob of masked antifa thugs ran toward Strickland and tried to surround him.

This time he pulled his pistol to back them off. No shots were ever fired; Strickland's finger never came close to the trigger. His gambit worked, however. They backed off and Strickland got away from the mob, eventually being arrested by the cops. He was released with a citation.

Charges against him grew from misdemeanors to 21 counts, ten of which were felonies, within hours of Portland politicos getting an earful from one of Strickland's favorite targets, an anti-Second Amendment group called "Ceasefire Oregon." The politicos also seemed to take on faith the word of one of the conspirators who insisted Strickland must be a racist, even though he knew better.

Only a couple of his so-called victims were identified, the rest were unknown and described as having masks over their faces and unidentifiable.

For this act of self-defense in defense of his own First Amendment rights, Strickland was ordered to jail.

Though he could have gone to state prison for decades, in the end, Strickland did 40 days in jail. But he was put on five years' probation, his Second Amendment rights were stripped and he was ordered to surrender some of his First Amendment rights by being forbidden from practicing journalism and recording Portland's leftist protesters. The mob, courts, and allies had silenced him.

Portland-are journalist Andy Ngo, who has followed Strickland in filming antifa, has been assaulted several times by the antifa. But after seeing Strickland arrested for defending himself, Ngo says he won't defend himself against antifa's attacks.

After he made arguments on Strickland's behalf to the Oregon Court of Appeals in October 2018, attorney Robert Barnes told me that if this can happen in Portland it can happen anywhere:

[R]ight now if you’re in the black bloc what do you think? I can harass somebody and get them arrested if they try to defend themselves.

And then they want people not to defend themselves so that they feel terrified, so that the[y] feel scared, so that they feel frightened, so that their behavior can be publicly and privately coerced. And that’s the danger. And that’s why this case is bigger than one person.

If this can happen to him here it can happen to anyone, anywhere, and it means that nobody is safe. And that’s why this case is so significant.

Barnes has always maintained that the Strickland case has never been a strictly Second Amendment case. He believes it's a First Amendment case:

In Portland, if you merely show you are armed, you will be arrested, charged with a felony, and banned from public events for "disturbing" ANTIFA with your presence. Ask Mike Strickland.

He continued about how corrosive ignoring antifa has been to Portland and beyond:

There is a reason the media celebrates ANTIFA, stays mute about the black bloc, and political patrons in Portland imprisoned ANTIFA critics rather than lefty violence. They were always heading in this direction once they lost political power: cultural blackmail & street violence.

Barnes says Strickland's case is bigger than one person because if the conviction against him stands then no one is safe:

This battle will be just the beginning of a long extended battle. If this can happen to him here it can happen to anyone, anywhere, and it means that nobody is safe. And that’s why this case is so significant.

Barnes is right about it being a long battle. The Oregon Appeals Court ruled Wednesday that the lower court ruling convicting Strickland stands.

He made a prediction of what this appeals court ruling really says about the Oregon justice system:

Excuses the @ORDOJ used to justify the jailing of independent reporter, Mike Strickland: that the black bloc violent anarchist group is part of the "protest community" of Portland & that a reporter who is "polarizing" to ANTIFA-types should be banned from filming public events.

Barnes told me he's filing a motion for reconsideration by the court – and will keep going if he has to.



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


Monday, April 06, 2020

Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Attaboy Girl!

Rich Kozlovich

Recently there's been a lot of talk about Ruth Bader Ginsburg going to the gym with a trainer present, as outlined in this article by Kristinn Taylor, In Midst of DC's Coronavirus Shutdown, Ruth Bader Ginsburg Meets Trainer for Workouts at Supreme Court Gym, posted on April 1st.  Ruth Bader Ginsberg works out?  You’re kidding me, right?  Is this an April Fool's joke?  Apparently not, and it was followed with hundreds of comments, some of them very unpleasant, which I would expect regarding RBG.

As I've said in the past, I've been privileged to be part of an e-mail group that's educated, intelligent, and polite, even when we disagree, which is regularly since some are very liberal and others are very conservative, yet the discussions remains respectful.  That's why I feel privileged to be a part of this group, and what I admire about our group the most.

Having said that, our group has ventured in on this business with BRG having the nerve to go out of her house, and worse yet, going to a gym with a trainer, declaring she's a bad example and represents a danger to the public as a result.  My initial comment was she was doing this because she wasn't any more taken in by all this pandemic hysteria than I am, and I said something I never in my life thought I could possibly utter - I gave her an Attaboy Girl.

Well, this didn't go away, and led to more discussion over the whole surrounding subject of this China flu and what's happening.

There are pandemics every year, we just don’t call them pandemics because they’ve become a part of our lives.  The World Health Organization, which declares these things, isn’t a true health organization.  It’s like the IPCC, which isn’t a true science group, they’re both part of the UN, and they’re both UN political cat’s paws masquerading as science and health organizations.

So, declaring what’s a pandemic apparently has nothing to do with numbers, otherwise they would declare flu pandemics each and every year based on the numbers of people infected and die.   Yet they don’t!  I say they're all pandemics, others say they're merely epidemics, but this question remains: Have we ever shut down the nation over pandemics or epidemics in the past?  The answer is no!

In days gone by most people went to work unless they were really sick.  That’s been an American societal paradigm for all of my life.  I ran a bread route many years ago, and at times sick as a dog.  Breadmen have to give notice if they’re going to die, and preferably at least three days’ notice so they can get the bread out without interruption.  I’m being factious of course, but that was, and is, the mentality in the bread business.

Prudence versus panic is a matter of definition.  I call what’s going on panic fueled by hyperbolic hysterical politicians and writers with an anti-American and anti-Trump agenda.  Let's put this in perspective. Why in the world are we treating this "pandemic" differently than all the other infectious diseases that were declared as “pandemics” that has stuck this nation over the years?

Is it going to be worse than seasonal flu cases?  Maybe, but so far there no indication it will be that much more, and even then, by how much worse where we decide to shut down the nation, and destroy the world’s economy.  What's the break point for that decision?  Who makes it?  The Constitution doesn't give the President or the Congress the right to do that, and as far as I've been able to tell, there's no State Constitution that gives Governors, or their legislatures, the right to do that.

I've seen figures that state the death toll for seasonal flu is between 20,000 and 36,000 and one writer claimed as many as 60,000.  Whatever the actual numbers are, that’s a lot of darn people dying every year, and we have to ask: Is this any worse?  If so by how much?

And comparing numbers from America and other countries is apparently meaningless because whenever these things strike, they effect different populations differently.  In the past we just sucked it up and went on with our lives.  If we were sick, we stayed home, that is if we were really sick.  Otherwise most were expected to go to work, and they did.

Take these things seriously but we need to stop being panicked by a lunatic media, and a political element that so desires to destroy Trump they actually love this pandemic, in order to once again blame him, and attack him with lies and ridiculous charges.  This flu virus should be taken seriously, but we need to suck it up and recognize this is all being promoted with hyperbole, lies, and politics.  And taking something seriously is different than becoming hysterical.

This was in 2014, and is a good example of the double standard
set by the media and the Democrat party   

Name one of these pandemics where the media attacked the sitting President as they’re doing now. Name one of these lunatic leftist politicians who are attacking Trump that did anything similar when Obama was President. Obama said to suck it up when Swine flu struck and no one said a thing.

I went to the bank last week and they know me and that I write about this kind of thing.  We had some discussion, and of course I said this was all insanity.  They were polite, but I could tell they didn't want to dispute this with a customer.  We could only go in one at a time.  When the guy before me was leaving, I was allowed to go in.  Remember, he passed right beside me, right beside the manager, touched two door handles, going in and going out, and handed the teller paper work.  And this goes on all day long, six days a week.

I forgot to sign the back of my check so the teller handed my check back and a pen to sign it.  After I handed both back to her I snarkerly, with a bit of dramatic air said, Oooooh, I touched the pen, thinking she would see the humor in that statement.   Wrong – she actually had a bit of a shock to her expression.  I’ve known this teller for years, and she’s no wall flower, but it was clear she’s intimidated by all this hyperbole.

We have lost our minds!!!!!!!!

We need to start seeing this clearly.  Flu viruses - yearly – are a part of our lives.  It’s been that way year after year, going back into the 1800’s and probably more, and the only one that was truly a pandemic disaster was the Spanish Influence, killing over 20 million people.   This isn’t the Spanish Influenza – oops is that racist? – and when it’s all said and done, we’re going to look around at the devastation this hysteria caused and ask – it that all there was?

There are probably a lot of asymptomatic people in my area, but I also think that’s true everywhere.  But I believe it always has been so, but we never thought shutting of down the nation, destroying businesses, putting millions out of work, bankrupting millions, ultimately causing untold numbers of foreclosures as time goes by, promoting crime – burglaries have skyrocketed – and when it’s over, what about those disrupted lives, when we say:  Sorry about that, that's all there was, but we had to destroy your lives to save you.

As I said, I never in my life thought I would say this about RBG, especially since saying this almost gives me hives – Ruth Bader Ginsburg:  Attaboy Girl!


Britain is sliding into dystopia

Derbyshire Police have tweeted a menacing video warning the public to stay away from the Peak District during the coronavirus lockdown.

The video shows police drone footage of unsuspecting members of the public hiking, walking their dogs and watching the sunset. All totally harmless behaviour, which is now deemed ‘non-essential’ – and by implication illegal – by the authorities.

The footage gives us a glimpse into the dystopia unfolding before our eyes. In the name of fighting coronavirus, in a matter of days Britain has become something of a police state. Millions of people are effectively under house arrest.

Parliament, meanwhile, before shutting up shop entirely, handed the authorities the most draconian powers ever known during peacetime. Police have been given blanket powers to enforce largely arbitrary rules.

It is abundantly clear that the people being shamed by Derbyshire Police have done nothing wrong. They are walking alone or in small groups. And with so much distance between them and everyone else – the Peak District could hardly be more sparsely populated – they pose no danger of spreading the virus to anyone.

If social distancing must be enforced, it should be enforced with proportion, common sense and empathy. It is not at all clear that the police can be trusted to do this.


No proof coronavirus can be spread while shopping, says leading German virologist

Initial findings suggest virus may be less easily transmitted than thought

Coronavirus has not been spread by shopping or going to the hairdresser, a leading virologist has said after studying a hotspot for the virus.

Prof Hendrik Streeck, leading the response in one of Germany's worst-hit regions, said Covid-19 might not be spread as easily as people believe.

But it came as Boris Johnson warned that lockdown measures in the UK may have to be tightened amid signs they were beginning to meet resistance.

Official figures showed a "concerning" uptick in the number of people using transport, particularly their cars.

Experts warned the Government it needed to have the public's trust to persuade people to follow the measures.

In his research, Prof Streeck said the home of an infected family his team visited "did not have any live virus on any surface" including on phones, door knobs or even the pet cat's fur....


It’s time to stop fake political correctness and artificial harmony

The good intentions of political correctness have today stifled curiosity, understanding and our ability to empathise. It’s also a movement that needs to be curbed, according to Sarah Liu.

Political correctness has been around for half a century and throughout that time the world has witnessed many great changes; the end of apartheid, Australia’s first female Prime Minister and the passing of the same-sex marriage bill.

The term describes an avoidance of actions and language that offends or marginalises groups, particularly those that have historically been discriminated against.

The problem with political correctness.  Yes, political correctness has a powerful place in society, but in our increasingly diverse workplaces, PC culture has stifled curiosity, understanding, and our ability to empathise.

Australia is a proudly multicultural nation. Because of this, many believe our diversity rates and inclusive behaviours are ahead of the pack. In reality, we are not as progressive as we think. Working with global organisations from Shanghai, Japan, Pakistan, Malaysia and Silicon Valley taught me that Australia’s relationship with diversity and inclusion is fraught – and no-one wants to talk about why they’re uncomfortable.

The smile-and-nod mentality is futile; on the surface workplaces are agreeing, while deep-down they’re not buying in. There is an artificial harmony between the politically correct way to embrace diversity and inclusion, and the real feelings, concerns and questions we have about the practical implications of change.

We must do better, and if that means being politically incorrect for the greater good of true progress, then so be it.

Political incorrectness is the real answer

Humans are organically wired to be exclusive creatures; we gravitate towards similarity and comfort, and often we find that in reflections of ourselves. When asked to not only support, but prioritise difference, it’s a common reaction to feel uncomfortable or threatened.

This needs to be acknowledged, and that begins by proactively inviting dissent. Everyone has a bias – be that unconscious or otherwise – that informs their understanding of what diversity and inclusion is.

Of all groups, rarely do we encounter anyone that wants to openly discriminate, rather it’s misinformation that fosters resistance.

Creating psychologically safe spaces to be politically incorrect and ask taboo questions without fear of judgement is the way to having honest and effective conversations.

The ‘one size fits all’ approach – rigid workplace policies or lectures on the issue – only moralises workers, rather than actively engaging them in what they think diversity and inclusion means. This has the potential to create a culture of blind acceptance by suppressing curiosity and real understanding.

Acknowledging resistance is the first step to dropping the false pretence of artificial harmony. We are often told about the benefits of diversity and inclusion; the increased performance results; diversified skill sets; expanded talent pool; increased innovation – the list goes on. But little attention is paid to the myths and challenges associated with implementing change.

Hidden myths of implementing change

A common myth is that women and minority groups are promoted or given special treatment over men, sparking all sorts of heated debate around the role of meritocracy. In reality, diversity and inclusion is not about superiorising women and minorities, it’s about adopting and learning an alternate view of what success, skills, experience and potential looks like when it encompasses a greater portion of society.

Another common misconception is that all people want to be treated equally, that the goal of diversity and inclusion is to see no distinction between men, women, and minority groups. But the dream is not equality; it’s equity.

Focus on the power of equity instead

Treating everyone with equity is part of the reason why diversity and inclusion is challenging, not only to implement but to maintain.

As a leader, it takes more money, time, resources and work to authentically manage individualism. Yet within many organisations, there’s a sense that once the right boxes are ticked, the job is done.

Diversity and inclusion create friction that can proactively encourage dissent, but the belief that creating change is easy discourages the hard work behind progress and the benefits that come with it.

It’s politically incorrect to openly acknowledge the difficulties of diversity and inclusion, but until we start to accept that it’s okay to imperfectly participate in conversation and be honest about the complexities that making real progress brings, we will continue to cultivate artificial harmony by wavering on the precipice of change.



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


UK: Ministers are accused of treating Doomsday scientist like demigod: Number 10 has failed to properly challenge the word of coronavirus professor Neil Ferguson whose study sent Britain into lockdown, critics say

Ministers were last night accused of treating the scientist behind the devastating study that sent Britain into lockdown like a ‘demigod’ and failing to properly challenge his work.

Professor Neil Ferguson and his team of academics at Imperial College London last month produced a shocking forecast of 250,000 UK coronavirus deaths without a draconian lockdown, persuading Boris Johnson to abandon his more limited response to the virus.

But now Professor John Ashton, a former regional director of public health for North West England, has accused No 10 of relying on a ‘little clique’ of researchers and failing to consult a wider pool of academics. ‘These guys are being regarded as demigods,’ he said.

‘Here we are talking about science but this research is being given a kind of religious status, like tablets of stone from the mountain.’

His broadside came as a senior Government adviser yesterday warned Britain has ‘painted itself into a corner’ with no clear exit strategy from the epidemic. Chief pandemic modeller Graham Medley said a prolonged lockdown risks causing more suffering than the virus itself.

‘We will have done three weeks of this lockdown, so there’s a big decision coming up,’ he said. ‘In broad terms, are we going to continue to harm children to protect vulnerable people, or not?’

A Mail on Sunday investigation yesterday revealed divisions among scientists about Ferguson’s study and criticism over some of his previous calculations.

It reveals how:

Professor Carl Heneghan and Dr Tom Jefferson at the University of Oxford’s Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine questioned the lockdown policy because the virus may already be more widespread than commonly thought;

They warned the draconian restrictions are ‘going to bankrupt all of us and our descendants’;

Ferguson faced mounting calls to make the computer model he uses public so it can be scrutinised by other scientists;

His modelling of the 2001 foot and mouth epidemic came under fire, with a top scientist claiming it contained a ‘myriad of errors’.

Yesterday, Prof Ferguson said Britain is unlikely to lift lockdown rules until the end of May and warned the infection rate will remain high for ‘weeks and weeks’ if people flout social-distancing rules this weekend.

He was propelled to prominence after his team claimed last month that around 510,000 people in Britain could die if no action was taken to control coronavirus and almost half that number would still perish if the Government stuck to its then limited restrictions.

His landmark paper’s accompanying press release presented what Prof Ferguson described as ‘concrete estimates’ based on a complex computer model.

But experts highlight how the model uses a string of assumptions, including that 0.9 per cent of those infected will die. This figure relies on data collected during the Chinese outbreak but US spy agencies have cast doubt on the accuracy of the regime’s statistics.

Meanwhile, Prof Heneghan and Dr Jefferson’s belief the virus may already be widespread echoes a study by another group of academics at Oxford last month.

‘What the current situation boils down to is this: is economic meltdown a price worth paying to halt or delay what is already amongst us?’ Heneghan and Jefferson said.

Research by Ferguson and his mentor Professor Roy Anderson during the foot and mouth outbreak in 2001 helped persuade Tony Blair’s government to carry out a devastating cull of animals.

But Michael Thrusfield, a professor of veterinary epidemiology at Edinburgh University, last night said that their model contained errors and they ‘generated an Armageddon virus which did not accord with reality’.

Downing Street is being advised by the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies, which includes Ferguson and other scientists and health experts.

But Prof Ashton says Ministers should consult a wider range of disciplines, including anthropologists, psychologists and social scientists, who can predict population responses.

Ferguson last night said there are ten models, including his own, informing the Government and a ‘wide variety of scientists inputting into policy’.

‘I would never try to claim any of the models I produce are an exact prediction of what will happen,’ he said. ‘But they are better than trying to make policy in a vacuum.’

His coronavirus model will be published online this week and he stands by his work during the foot and mouth crisis, he added.

The Government said last night it is receiving advice from more than 20 institutions ‘across a variety of disciplines’.


Coronavirus: UK’s virus adviser calls for way out of COVID-19 lockdown

Britain has “painted itself into a corner” with no clear exit strategy from the coronavirus epidemic and needs to reconsider herd immunity, according to a senior government adviser.

A prolonged lockdown risks causing more suffering than the virus itself, Graham Medley, the government’s chief pandemic modeller, has warned. He said that the country needed to face the trade-off between harming the young versus the old.

Professor Medley, a member of the key scientific body that is guiding the government’s response, told The Times that Britain must consider allowing people to catch the virus in the least deadly way possible rather than letting unemployment, domestic violence and mental ill health mount indefinitely.

His modelling showed that letting people return to work or reopening schools would allow the pandemic to take off again and no way had been found of easing the lockdown while controlling the virus. Only those working outside might be safe to go back to their jobs, he found.

An antibody test, which the government is hoping will prove a “game-changer”, could help but was not working and such a method had never previously been used to manage an epidemic, he said.

His warning came after 684 more people were confirmed yesterday to have died from the virus in Britain’s biggest daily rise, taking the total to 3605.

In other developments:

- Britain’s service industry is collapsing at a “harrowing” pace, according to data pointing to a recession steeper than that of the 1930s.

- Premier League clubs are to ask players to take a 30 per cent pay cut to protect jobs at football clubs.

- The deputy chief medical officer said there was no evidence that the public wearing face masks would slow the spread of the virus.

- Two nurses in their 30s died of coronavirus in the 24 hours up to last night

Boris Johnson, who will continue to self-isolate with coronavirus symptoms including a temperature, used a video message to urge people to stick to the lockdown and not abandon social-distancing rules during what is expected to be a sunny weekend.

“Particularly if you’ve got kids in the household, everybody may be getting a bit stir-crazy, and there may be just a temptation to get out there, hang out and start to break the regulations. I just urge you not to do that,” the prime minister said, adding: “Please, please stick with the guidance now.”

It is understood that work is under way to quantify health harms caused by lockdown, although this has not yet reached ministers. They have said this trade-off has not featured in government decision-making and Downing Street is giving all its attention to social distancing and building NHS capacity.

While declining to comment on Sage discussions, Professor Medley said: “It’s certainly been a concern from the outset and something that is increasingly being considered.”

Nearly a million people have applied for benefits in the past two weeks and millions more have been furloughed.

Professor Medley said: “The measures to control [the disease] cause harm. The principal one is economic, and I don’t mean to the economy generally, I mean to the incomes of people who rely on a continuous stream of money and their children, particularly the school closure aspect . . . There will also be actual harms in terms of mental health in terms of domestic violence and child abuse and in terms of food poverty.”

He added: “If we carry on with lockdown it buys us more time, we can get more thought put into it, but it doesn’t resolve anything - it’s a placeholder.”

The introduction of the lockdown on March 23 is on course to avoid a catastrophic peak, but the virus will start spreading again once it is eased, it is believed. In the absence of a vaccine, viruses only stop spreading when enough people have been infected that they can no longer pass from person to person, a concept known as herd immunity.

Although never a government goal, this was tacitly accepted as inevitable by an initial strategy designed to manage a peak in the summer, when the NHS would be better able to cope. Headlines suggesting that ministers wanted 60 per cent of people to get the disease to protect the economy led to the idea being sidelined. Latest estimates suggest that almost 70 per cent of the population need to contract the virus to ensure herd immunity.


Coronairus restrictions can damage mental health

Traumatic events, from natural disasters to war, can damage people’s mental health. The Covid-19 pandemic is no different. It has brought the fear of contagion and of loved ones falling sick. It has created huge uncertainty about every aspect of life. And with a fifth of the world under lockdown, protracted isolation is also bringing loneliness, anxiety and depression. Quarantines and “social distancing”, policy measures needed to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus that causes Covid-19, are against human nature. Touch and social networks are essential for both people and non-human primates: female baboons who have more grooming partners, or friends, exhibit lower levels of cortisol, a stress hormone.

It has been less than a month since the Italian government imposed a national quarantine, but the strain on people’s mental health is starting to show. More than 13,100 people there have died from Covid-19; at least two nurses who were working in intensive-care units where they were treating patients suffering from the disease have killed themselves. The Italian national nursing federation said that one of the nurses who committed suicide, Daniela Trezzi, had been off work ill and that Ms Trezzi was deeply worried that she had infected patients (though the local health authority said she had not tested positive). In Germany, which imposed restrictions after Italy, the finance minister of the state of Hesse, who was said to be deeply worried about the economic impact of the pandemic, killed himself on March 28th.

Awareness of the strain on people’s mental health is growing. In Britain Public Health England, a government agency, along with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, released a set of guidelines on “the mental health and well-being aspects of coronavirus” on March 29th. In the same week, 62% of Britons said that they were finding it harder to be positive about the future compared with how they felt before the outbreak, according to Ipsos MORI, a pollster. “People are struggling with the emotions as much as they are struggling with the economics,” said Andrew Cuomo, governor of New York, America’s hardest-hit state, on March 21st. Four days later he set up a free hotline for those whose mental health was suffering.

Some are particularly susceptible to stress during a pandemic. Health-care workers are most exposed to the virus. The sense of camaraderie and of being part of a team that is helping people can buoy their spirits. But many doctors and nurses are being forced to isolate themselves away from their families because they may be infectious, which adds to their strains, points out Dhruv Khullar, a doctor in New York.

The lack of personal protective equipment for medics in many countries will only make that stress worse. Nicholas Christakis, now at Yale, worked as a doctor in the 1990s during the HIV/AIDS epidemic. There was a “lot of fear among health workers that if you looked after an AIDS patient you would contract the disease,” he recalls. But back then they had enough protective equipment. That made the risk of infection, which comes with the job, more bearable. Covid-19 is much easier to catch. “The current situation is like sending a fireman into a building naked,” he says.

Among the population at large, some may be especially worried. Those who have lost their jobs, who now number in the millions, may have lost not just their income, but also their identity, routine and much of their social network, says Jan-Emmanuel De Neve, head of the Wellbeing Research Centre at Oxford University.

Single people who once whiled away their days with friends, or those who live separately from their partners, suddenly find themselves spending most of their time alone. Many who exercise in teams or groups—or simply enjoy spending time outside—have to make do with a cramped living room and online classes. Mike, a 29-year-old Briton who works in finance in Brussels, is relieved that so far he is still allowed out for runs (though police move him along if he sits down to catch his breath): “Otherwise I’d just feel like Robinson Crusoe with Netflix.” Isolation will affect the mental health of even those who appear to be in less danger from the virus: 67% of Britons between the ages of 18 and 34 said they were finding it hard to remain upbeat, compared with 54% of those between the ages of 55 and 75.

If lockdowns stretch on for months, old people will suffer particularly acutely. Even before they were confined to their homes, they were more likely to feel lonely. Elderly women in Europe are more than twice as likely as men to live on their own. They rely on seeing family and friends to keep up their morale, or simply for a routine. Alfredo Rossi, an 80-year-old in Casalpusterlengo, one of the first areas of Italy to be put under lockdown in February, says that what upsets him most about the restrictions is being unable to see his grandchildren who live just 16km (ten miles) away in Piacenza across the River Po.

Domestic violence, already endemic everywhere, rises sharply when people are placed under the strains that come from confined living conditions and worries about their security, health and money, says Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, the head of UN Women, a UN agency. Based on early estimates, she thinks that in some countries under lockdown, domestic violence could be up by about a third.

The scale of the lockdowns is unprecedented. But research into previous traumatic events and other types of isolation offers some clues about the likely mental-health fallout. According to a rapid review of the psychological effects of quarantines, published on March 14th in the Lancet, a British medical journal, some studies suggest that the impact of quarantines can be so severe as to result in a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The condition, which may include symptoms such as hyper-vigilance, flashbacks and nightmares which can last for years, became a formal psychiatric diagnosis in 1980, when veterans were still experiencing stress from the Vietnam war, which ended in 1975.

One study from 2009 looked at hospital employees in Beijing who in 2003 were exposed to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), which, like Covid-19, is caused by a coronavirus. The authors found that, three years later, having been quarantined was a predictor of post-traumatic-stress symptoms. Another study, from 2013, used self-reported data to compare post-traumatic-stress symptoms in parents and children who had been quarantined because they lived in areas affected either by SARS or the H1N1outbreak in 2009, with those who had not. It found that the mean post-traumatic-stress scores were four times higher in children who had been isolated. Among the parents who had been quarantined, 28% reported symptoms serious enough to warrant a diagnosis of a trauma-related mental-health disorder. For those who had not been in isolation, the figure was 6%.

The longer a quarantine goes on, the greater the effect on people’s mental health. Another study, which also looked at the impact of SARS, found that those who were quarantined for more than ten days were significantly more likely to display symptoms of PTSD than those confined for fewer than ten days.

Cynthia Dearin, a consultant in Australia who spent four years in Iraq between 2006 and 2010 in various military camps that restricted her movement, said that whenever she returned to Iraq after a “decompression break”, she felt an “instant Baghdad depression”. Living in a war zone is very different from living through a pandemic, but she sees parallels in the loss of freedom and the sense of danger. “We also had the choice to leave the lockdown,” she reflects. “What is different now is that nobody can escape.” In Iraq many of her contemporaries turned to alcohol to numb the boredom and the fear. Increased sales of alcohol suggest that many are doing the same today. In Britain they were up by two-thirds in the week to March 21st compared with 2019, according to Nielsen, a market-research firm.

Those who have willingly isolated themselves in less traumatic circumstances may provide examples of how to ease the current crisis. In addition to the loneliness they experience, astronauts, who spend prolonged periods away from their loved ones or indeed any other human beings, suffer from disturbed sleep, heart palpitations, anxiety and mood swings. Cooped up together, they may also fall out with their fellow crew members.

Couples who suddenly find themselves in enforced proximity may sympathise. There are reports that some cities in China, such as Xi’an and Dazhou, have seen a spike in divorce proceedings since the lockdown was lifted in parts of the country in early March. Writing in the New York Times, Scott Kelly, a former astronaut who spent a year on the International Space Station, suggested that keeping a routine and writing a journal can help ease loneliness. He also encouraged people to get outside, if they could. He found that after “being confined to a small space for months, I actually started to crave nature—the colour green, the smell of fresh dirt, and the feel of warm sun on my face.”

Even under the tightest restrictions, people find ways to cope. “People are rediscovering that they live in roads full of people,” says Robin Dunbar, an anthropologist and evolutionary psychologist at Oxford University. Neighbours can be irritating, but in a crisis they can also be a comfort.

Groups have formed in many places to support local vulnerable people. According to Julianne Holt-Lunstad, an expert in loneliness at Brigham Young University, studies have shown that those who feel they have “supportive people” in their social networks are less likely to react to stressful circumstances than those who do not. Simply knowing you have others on whom you can rely can reduce spikes in blood pressure and heart rate, she says.

Live in fragments no longer

Abigail, a 32-year-old charity worker in Brussels, says that her student neighbours used to get on her nerves because they played loud music. But as she spends the lockdown alone, she has got to know them. She now welcomes their music: “They bring the party.” In Belgium, Britain, Italy and the Netherlands people have started to clap and bang pans from their windows and doors to thank medics and other essential workers.

Talking to friends and family over video calls helps, too—though the clunkiness of much of the software makes them an imperfect substitute for an encounter in person. A pixelated version of spending time with a friend merely slows down the “rate of decay” of that relationship, says Professor Dunbar, but will never be able to replace the experience of seeing someone in the flesh. “You have to see the eyeballs—the whites of the eyes—and be able to physically hold on to them,” he says, in order to maintain a friendship and feel a social bond. For Claudia that moment will come when her football team, which for her is both exercise and a kind of group therapy, can meet up once more, rather than just chat virtually. “It is going to be beautiful,” she says.


Australia: Beautiful One Day, Police State The Next

To control the spread of a dangerous virus that as yet has taken 24 lives in this country, 25 million Australians have been placed under indefinite house arrest, children’s playgrounds are locked and patrolled by security guards, and the police fly drones over beaches and parks.

To control a virus that as yet has infected 5000 Australians, the response of doctors and politicians to this serious health crisis was to create also a humanitarian and an economic crisis. In the years to come Australians will quite rightly question whether there could have been a better way.

Future generations will ask why the public was so quick to accept the opinions of those experts who presented the worst-case scenarios rather than listen to other experts, no less qualified to offer a judgment, but who suggested less draconian solutions than those that came to be implemented.

Those future generations will also ponder how in 2020 it was that so many Australians could have become so completely disengaged and removed from what happens in the economy that they could advocate policies that would have shut down practically all economic activity in the country.

This is the position of the Labor leader, Anthony Albanese, who said: “The government has a responsibility to deal with this health emergency. That is the first priority. Then, it needs to deal with the economic consequences of the health emergency and the appropriate response. It needs to be done in that order.”

Sadly, Albanese seems not to understand that the economic emergency Australia faces involves people’s lives in exactly the same way as does the health emergency.

Australians like to joke about how the country’s second-most populous state has become “The People’s Socialist Republic of Victoria”. But it is no laughing matter that in the space of just a few weeks Victoria became a police state, as its government made laws and then enforced those laws, in ways not very different from how the worst socialist regimes operate. The New South Wales government (‘liberal’ in name only) has been quick to follow Victoria’s lead.

Passed without scrutiny

In Victoria, the most extreme house arrest laws in the country were enacted without parliamentary authority and without any form of public or democratic scrutiny. They were simply made under an enabling act that allows the government do anything it “considers is reasonably necessary to protect public health”. Using this power, Victoria has enacted house arrest laws that are arbitrary, unpredictable, and that are changed, literally, hour by hour at the whim of politicians and bureaucrats.

On Wednesday morning the Victorian Premier declared that it was against the law for anyone to leave their home for any non-essential purpose, including couples who lived apart visiting each other. Just before 5pm that day, following a community backlash, the government announced couples would be exempt from the law.

Meanwhile, in New South Wales, police officers harass people sitting alone on park benches. In 1984, Big Brother at least allowed Winston Smith to go outside.

Jonathan Sumption, a former judge on the UK Supreme Court, gave an interview to the BBC on Monday in which he warned of the consequences of untrammelled power in the hands of politicians and the police. Everything he said applies to Australia. Of police operating in the UK in the same way as they are in Victoria and New South Wales, Sumption said: “That is what a police state is like. It’s a state in which the government can issue orders or express preferences with no legal authority and the police will enforce ministers’ wishes.”

It is significant that despite all the coverage it has devoted to the current crisis, the mainstream media in Australia has made no reference to the interview. It might be that the answer to Sumption’s question is too uncomfortable.

“Yes this is serious and yes it’s understandable that people cry out to the government,’’ Sumption said.

“But the real question is: Is this serious enough to warrant putting most of our population into house imprisonment, wrecking our economy for an indefinite period, destroying businesses that honest and hard-working people have taken years to build up, saddling future generations with debt, depression, stress, heart attacks, suicides and unbelievable distress…”



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


Sunday, April 05, 2020

The shutdown will be deadlier than the virus

We are in the midst of the strangest event of our lives. Societies have shut down. Families and whole nations face financial ruin. Walking the streets is now a crime from Paris to Sydney to Mumbai. And all of this has occurred not despite the will of the people but because of it.

The reasons are well known. There is a virus on the loose. It is transmitted by humans and is killing tens of thousands. It is an existential threat at which all resources must be thrown and all energy expended.

This is the popular mantra. And if true it would justify the incredible events we are witnessing. The problem is that it appears not to be true, a fact few are willing to entertain amid the hysteria that prevails. Yet its falsity is indicated on a cursory review of the best available data.

That data is provided by Italy, an early epicentre of the virus with many deaths recorded.

On March 26, the country’s peak health organisation — the National Institute of Health — published a report with details of the 6801 deaths the country had recorded to that point. This is a considerable sample size, and the figures are revealing.

The first statistics of note are those about the average age of casualties, which is 78. The median is 79. A little more than 95 per cent of victims were over 60, and zero deaths were recorded for people under the age of 30.

Then there is the method of designating the virus as the cause of death, which includes anyone who had tested positive for it before dying. In other words, many were said to have died from the virus when in truth they merely died with it.

Third, 98 per cent of casualties of a random sample of patients had a pre-existing chronic illness, or comorbidity, at their time of death. About 21 per cent suffered from a single comorbidity, 26 per cent from two, 51 per cent from three and just 2 per cent with none.

Walter Ricciardi, scientific adviser to Italy’s Health Minister, recent­ly reported: “On re-evalua­tion by the National Institute of Health, only 12 per cent of death certificates have shown a direct causality from coronavirus.”

The overwhelming majority of Italy’s deaths involved chronically ill and elderly patients.

This is not to diminish these tragedies. But the questions arise: why are we surrendering our hard-won civil liberties and committing economic suicide when this virus poses a danger to only a small portion of our society? Why do we not pour all of our resources into protecting the vulnerable?

The answer is that a 24-hour news cycle, with its morbid tallying of deaths, images of corpses and sensationalist reporting of outlier cases has whipped the public into a frenzy that politicians have had to take extreme measures to appease.

And anyone who questions the collective unreason is denounced on social media as a bloodthirsty mercenary who favours the economy over human life.

History shows time and again the reaction to a perceived crisis becomes the true catastrophe. Like the execution of witches until the mid-18th century or the scapegoating of Jews for poisoning wells during the Black Plague, evidence and logic are of no use to us now. There is an existential threat, and anyone who denies it is not just a denier but the cause.

None of this is to say this virus is not dangerous. It is. But the level of threat it poses is being exaggerated, and the response to it exaggerated as a result.

This is especially true in Australia, where infection rates appear to be relatively low and the government containment methods are among the most draconian worldwide.

If the government has compelling data to support this strategy, it should release it. But there seems to be no correlation between the scale of the threat and the economic and social damage we will suffer responding to it.

There is a disaster afoot. But it is not the COVID-19 virus. It is the putative remedy, a fact we will not appreciate until it’s too late.


No ceasefire in feminist attacks on men   

Bettina Arndt

The famous Canadian men’s rights activist and former Ottawa English professor, Janice Fiamengo, has produced a new video, expressing dismay that the world-wide health crisis has not led to a ceasefire in the attacks on men. She says it is obscene that the “poor me” rhetoric still dominates, with article after article appearing suggesting women are most affected by the virus, despite the fact that men comprise up to 70 per cent of COVID-19 deaths.

As Fiamengo points out it has hard to imagine a scenario where a pandemic was causing women to die in much higher numbers than men and have that not be a front-page news item and major focus of investigation.

Here’s Fiamengo spelling out the craziness of what is going on:

“I have yet to read an article on gendered impacts that paused over men's higher mortality rate, lamented it, quoted anybody distressed about it, or suggested that special measures might be taken to protect men.

“I have yet to see a feminist journalist suggesting women could take over most activities involving potential exposure given women's greater immunity.

“I have yet to see a feminist article worrying about the men who face risks in their jobs.

“Instead the articles move with jaw-dropping indifference about men to discuss what are glibly called the ‘secondary impacts’ or the ‘social impacts’ of the virus on women.

“Many of these impacts are speculative and short-term and hardly compare in severity to dying. The most serious is that women comprise the majority of healthcare workers and thus are ‘on the frontlines of the COVID-19 fight’, as one World Economic Forum article put it. The other frequently repeated complaint, far less onerous, is that women are the primary caregivers for children and other relatives, especially elderly relatives and are thus disproportionately burdened by school closures and the pressures of looking after sick parents. These may be true as far as they go but they certainly leave a great deal left unsaid."

Here’s Fiamengo’s excellent video: Coronavirus: More Men Die, Women Most Affected - The Fiamengo File Episode 116

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The left-wingers who love the police state

Just a few months ago, prominent left-wingers were on the streets protesting against what they saw as Britain’s ‘hard right’ and ‘authoritarian’ Tory government, which had supposedly seized power in a ‘coup’. During the election, they warned voters not to back the ‘extreme Tory right’.

In the words of Guardian columnist Owen Jones, Boris Johnson ‘has appointed the most hard-right government in modern times, an administration which threatens our hard-won rights and freedoms. Don’t underestimate this menace, and prepare to fight.’

So when that ‘hard-right’ government announced a full-scale lockdown of society last night, demolishing those ‘hard-won freedoms’ by effectively placing over 66million Britons under house arrest, you might have expected a flicker of resistance, or at least concern about how these measures might be exploited, from the millennial left.

Clearly, extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. The Covid-19 crisis is undeniably a major emergency. But, as many of these lefties correctly argued, prior to the lockdown, debate over the government’s handling of the crisis is necessary.

The problem is that these left-wingers, in tandem with the mainstream media, have been at the forefront of demanding ever-more repressive state crackdowns. And so when the lockdown eventually arrived, Jones was ‘relieved’.


'Coronavirus can't be allowed to destroy democracy': Alan Jones slams social distancing rules which threaten Australians  with jail or harsh fines

Radio broadcaster Alan Jones has slammed strict new social distancing laws as undemocratic and un-Australian.  

The recent New South Wales health order tackles the spread of COVID-19 by stopping people from going outside without good reason and enforcing severe penalties.

Speaking on 2GB, Mr Jones argued that the coronavirus measures were too harsh.

The health order dictated that there were now only 16 'reasonable excuses' for a person to leave their home.

These included exercise, shopping for essentials, seeking medical care, providing care or travelling to work.

Any person found breaching these rules could face six months in jail or a fine of up to $11,000.

Mr Jones said that he disagreed with the way the measures were implemented.

'The rules were implemented via regulation in NSW, not legislation, which means they were not debated in parliament and they were not subject to possibly sensible amendments,' he said. 

Mr Jones also argued that the strict measures were confusing and unfair.

'This order in NSW, by a Liberal government, should never have been gazetted. It's badly thought out, it's undemocratic, it's hopelessly un-Australian, it treats us as if we're all either completely stupid or servants of the state,' Mr Jones said.

Gatherings of more than two people, apart from immediate family, are also banned in NSW as are all non-essential activities. 

NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said the new social isolation rules would last for 90 days and hopefully not longer.

'It is 90 days. People will have gotten the message by then, hopefully,' he said on Thursday.

'We won't be talking about the powers, we'll be talking about what does it look like coming out of this.'

The number of confirmed COVID-19 infections in NSW has reached 2,298.

The state's death toll sits at 10 - almost half of the country's tally of 23 deaths.  

Positive coronavirus cases across Australia have risen to 5,103.



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


Friday, April 03, 2020

Idaho becomes first state to BAN trans girls and women from competing in female sports and will prohibit sex changes on birth certificates

Idaho Governor Brad Little has signed into law two anti-transgender bills, one of which would prevent transgender girls and women from competing in women's sports. 

The Republican governor also approved legislation that prohibits transgender people from changing the sex listed on their birth certificates.

The birth certificate measure ignores a 2018 federal court ruling that a past law barring transgender people from making the birth certificate changes violated the Equal Protection Clause of the US Constitution. The judge scrapped the ban and warned against new rules. The Idaho attorney general's office, which didn't appeal the ruling, said it could cost $1 million if the state had to defend the ban again and lost.

'There's an injunction that already absolutely forbids this policy, and the government can't enforce this law without violating a court order,' said Peter Renn of Lambda Legal, the law firm that represented two transgender women whose lawsuit led to the court ruling. 'The ramifications of contempt (of court) are quite furious.'

He said the court could impose fines and hold top officials at the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare responsible should the court order be violated.

Backers of the legislation said the federal court was wrong, and the law is needed so Idaho has accurate birth records. It takes effect July 1.

The sports ban applies to all sports teams sponsored by public schools, colleges and universities. A girls' or women's team will not be open to transgender students who identify as female. Backers said the law was needed because transgender female athletes have physical advantages.

Opponents said it discriminated against transgender girls and women, and would subject athletes to invasive tests to prove their gender, likely causing some potential athletes to avoid sports.

Republican Rep. Barbara Ehardt, who sponsored the sports ban, has consistently argued that allowing the practice would negate Title IX, the 1972 law barring sex discrimination in education and is credited with opening up athletic competition for girls and women.

The sports ban applies to all sports teams sponsored by public schools and colleges. A girls' or women's team will not be open to transgender students who identify as female    +6
The sports ban applies to all sports teams sponsored by public schools and colleges. A girls' or women's team will not be open to transgender students who identify as female

She didn't return a call from The Associated Press on Monday.

Both the anti-transgender bills had overwhelming support among Republicans in the House and Senate in numbers great enough to override a veto. Rather than wait out a potential veto, though, both chambers adjourned earlier this month because of coronavirus concerns and would have been powerless to override vetoes.

'We condemn Governor Little's actions and the actions of dozens of Idaho legislators who are so focused on pleasing their bigoted base instead of doing what is right,' said Mistie Tolman, Idaho director for Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii, adding the laws make Idaho one of the 'cruelest states in the country.'

Across the US, more than 40 bills were introduced this year targeting transgender youth. About half, like one of the Idaho bills, sought to ban transgender girls from competing at various levels of girls' sports. Another large batch of bills sought to ban certain types of gender-transition medical treatment for minors.

None of these bills have been enacted, and most have died. In some other states - including Ohio, Alabama, Tennessee, Kansas, Louisiana, South Carolina, Missouri and Arizona - bills of one or both categories remain technically alive, but most are considered unlikely to win final passage. In some cases, the legislatures are in recess and future scheduling is in limbo because of the coronavirus outbreak.

Meanwhile, the families of three female high school runners have filed a lawsuit in federal court seeking to block transgender athletes in Connecticut from participating in girls' sports.

On March 24, the US Justice Department came out in support of the lawsuit, arguing that the state's inclusive policy violates the federal Title IX law allowing girls equal educational and athletic opportunities.

Attorney General William Barr signed what is known as a statement of interest, arguing against the policy of the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference, the board that oversees the state's high school athletic competitions.

The conference allows athletes to compete as the gender with which they identify, arguing it is following a state law that requires high school students be treated according to their gender identity. It also argues the policy is in accordance with Title IX.

The Justice Department, in its filing, disagrees.

'Under CIAC's interpretation of Title IX, however, schools may not account for the real physiological differences between men and women. Instead, schools must have certain biological males - namely, those who publicly identify as female - compete against biological females,' Barr and the other department officials write. 'In so doing, CIAC deprives those women of the single-sex athletic competitions that are one of the marquee accomplishments of Title IX.'

The lawsuit was filed in February by runners Selina Soule, a senior at Glastonbury High School; Chelsea Mitchell, a senior at Canton High School; and Alanna Smith, a sophomore at Danbury High School, against the conference and several local boards of education. (Smith is the daughter of former MLB relief pitcher Lee Smith)

The girls' lawsuit centers on two transgender sprinters, Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood, who have frequently outperformed their cisgender competitors.

The two seniors have combined to win 15 girls state indoor or outdoor championship races since 2017, according to the lawsuit.

The three plaintiffs have competed directly against them, almost always losing to Miller and usually behind Yearwood. Mitchell finished third in the 2019 state championship in the girls 55-meter indoor track competition behind Miller and Yearwood.

Yearwood, of Cromwell High School, and Miller, of Bloomfield High School, have both defended their participation in girls events.

The plaintiffs are arguing that they have been deprived of wins, state titles and athletic opportunities by being forced to compete against transgender athletes.

'Males will always have inherent physical advantages over comparably talented and trained girls - that's the reason we have girls sports in the first place,' their attorney, Christiana Holcomb said Wednesday. 'And a male's belief about his gender doesn't eliminate those advantages.'   

Messages seeking comment were left Wednesday with the attorneys representing the the athletic conference, other defendants and the American Civil Liberties Union, which represents the two transgender girls who run track in Connecticut.

The spring track season is on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but conference officials have put off a decision on whether to cancel it.

Holcomb has said because the lawsuit also asks for changes to the state record book, the lawsuit will go forward even if it is not resolved before the seniors graduate.


Should the Constitution be amended to prohibit court-packing?

By Richard McCarty

Democrats have been angered and terrified by the progress that President Donald Trump has made in appointing conservative judges to the federal bench, especially to the Supreme Court. As a result, some Democrats are openly advocating for expanding the Court to pack it with liberal justices. Fortunately, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) has introduced a resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution to cap the size of the Supreme Court at nine justices; he has been joined by 14 other Republican Senators. On the House side, two Republicans have introduced resolutions to do the same thing, and both of those pieces of legislation have several cosponsors. Now Republicans should demand votes on these resolutions.

Liberals have long been able to turn to the courts to get virtually anything that they wanted when they could not win at the ballot box. Of course, the courts have also been very helpful to them in delaying or halting policies, programs, and projects that they opposed. So it should not be surprising that Democrats have resorted to desperate measures to maintain as much of their judicial power as possible.

For over 160 years, there have been nine seats on the Supreme Court. During the first 80 years of our Republic, the size of the Court varied between six and ten seats. That changed in 1869 when the Circuit Judges Act fixed the size of the Court at nine seats. In 1937, Franklin D. Roosevelt tried to expand the court and pack it with liberals who would rubberstamp his New Deal policies, but his scheme failed due to Congressional opposition.

In addition to left-wing commentators and activists, a number of Democrat politicians have either embraced packing the Court or expressed an openness to doing so. For example, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and former Democrat presidential candidate Tom Steyer (D-Calif.) both support court-packing. Ten other former Democrat presidential candidates, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), former Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-South Bend, Ind.), and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), were open to the idea.

To be sure, Democrats are right to be worried about the courts. Not only has Trump replaced Anthony Kennedy, a moderate swing vote on the Court, with a conservative; but he has also flipped three circuit courts of appeal from having a majority of judges on those circuits appointed by a Democrat president to having a majority of judges appointed by a Republican president. A second term for Trump along with a Republican Senate could mean that Democrats have decisively lost the Supreme Court for a generation; and they could soon be facing a judiciary with very few circuits still dominated by liberal judges.

Of course, Democrats have no one to blame but themselves for the predicament in which they find themselves. Had Democrats been willing to work in a bipartisan fashion on health care reform in the early Obama years, they might not have lost control of the Senate in 2014. Furthermore, had Democrats not eliminated the filibuster for lower court judges while they had the Senate majority and had they not filibustered the nomination of Gorsuch, they might not have lost the ability to filibuster Supreme Court nominees. But at every turn, Democrats made the wrong choice, and now they are paying for it.

For decades, conservatives have labored to gain control of the federal courts, especially the Supreme Court; but Republican leaders never advocated for packing the Court. Instead, they sought to elect Republican presidents and Senators. The most radical thing that Republicans considered —but delayed implementing — was eliminating the filibuster for Supreme Court justices. As we are now on the cusp of a solid constitutionalist majority on the Court, Republicans must act to defend those gains by demanding votes on a Constitutional amendment to prevent Democrats or anyone else from packing the Court.


Activists Riot After NY Police Shoot Armed Man in Self-Defense

One police officer in Newburgh, N.Y. was shot when trying to arrest an armed man wanted for questioning in a shooting. Bodycam footage clearly shows the man armed with a silver handgun violently resisting arrest, drawing his gun, and shooting the officer before getting shot to death by the police.

Cut and dried case of police defending themselves? Not if you're an activist wanting to stoke the fires of racial hatred.

Newburgh residents rioted that evening after a councilman-at-large, Omari Shakur, bitterly complained about police targeting blacks.

Record Online:

The people who gathered near both scenes were visibly emotional.

A man standing on the sidewalk on William Street near the police scene, who said he has lived in the City of Newburgh for 50 years, said loudly, “They’re killing us for nothing.”

Some law enforcement were armed with what looked like assault rifles. Helicopters circled the skies in both areas.

“Look,” Shakur said. “They’re walking through our streets with machine guns; they come in here like we’re criminals. You see, that’s what’s wrong with our community right now.”

It seems unbelievable that the police could be questioned over this incident. City officials tried to dampen the rioting by releasing stills from the bodycam footage of one of the officers.

A review of body-worn camera and street cameras shows that when officers approached the man, he displayed a silver handgun and began fighting with officers, striking one of the officers in the head with a handgun. During the encounter the man discharged the pistol and City of Newburgh Police Officers fired their weapons. One City of Newburgh Police Officer was taken to the hospital and treated for a gunshot wound, as well as injuries to his head. After the armed man was shot, City of Newburgh Police Officers attempted CPR. However, after transport to St. Luke’s Hospital for treatment, the man was subsequently pronounced dead.

To ensure public confidence in the integrity of the investigation stills from a portion of one of the officer’s body-worn camera footage is being released to the media.

“Normally in an investigation of this type of incident we would not be releasing images this early in the investigation,” said District Attorney David Hoovler. “However, to allay community concerns, which quite frankly have been stoked by misinformation coming from a city official, we are releasing these images showing the armed man discharging his gun.”

Those "community concerns" are created out of whole cloth. It's people hearing and seeing what they want to hear and see and then acting out their frustrations by rioting.


Australian State looks set to legalise voluntary assisted dying for terminally ill adults

Queensland should legalise voluntary assisted dying for terminally ill adults, the government's health committee has found.

An investigation to gauge public opinion on voluntary euthanasia has determined most Queenslanders are in favour of it.

Currently, there's no option for terminally ill Queenslanders to get help to die.

The committee found that every four days in Queensland, a terminally-ill person takes their own life.

'This must stop,' committee chair and Labor MP Aaron Harper wrote in a report tabled in parliament on Tuesday.

'Suicide should never be the only option for Queenslanders suffering at end of life.

'This is just one of the many reasons the majority of our committee chose to support a recommendation for more choice for people suffering from an advanced progressive or neurodegenerative condition, through access to a voluntary assisted dying scheme.'

A sample bill has already been draft by Queensland University of Technology Professors Ben White and Lindy Wilmot.

The committee of parliamentarians recommended euthanasia be limited to Australian citizens or permanent residents in Queensland with the capacity to make decisions.

To be eligible, patients must be diagnosed with an advanced or progressively terminal chronic or neurodegenerative condition that cannot be eased.

Those with a mental health illness should not be ruled out, so long as they can make decisions.

Time frames for a person's assisted death should not be proposed, the committee recommended, in recognition of the complex, subjective and unpredictable nature of terminal illnesses.

A sample bill has already been drafted by Queensland University of Technology Professors Ben White and Lindy Wilmot.

'It's an excellent bill,' Dying with Dignity Queensland president Jos Hall said.

Advocates want to see voluntary assisted dying legislated before October's state election, but understand the response to COVID-19 takes priority.

'It needs to be dealt with as a matter of priority at the first available opportunity,' Ms Hall said.

'Knowing that over 80 per cent of Queenslanders support voluntary assisted dying, regardless of who forms the next government, we would like to see this dealt with.

'We would be pleased to work with whichever party forms government if this is not dealt in this parliamentary term.'



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