These are all the Blogs posted on Monday, 13, 2008.
Monday, 13 October 2008
Wealth Is Not (Quite) Like Energy
by Policywatcher (Oct. 2008)
There is a relatively common tendency to equate wealth with energy – and various pundits often talk about wealth and energy in similar terms. There are beguiling similarities:
· Like matter and energy, wealth and energy appear to be relatively interchangeable commodities. Those with great amounts of reserves of energy can freely convert them to great wealth, and those with great wealth can convert it readily enough to ownership of reserves of energy.
· Wealth appears to obey basic gravitational laws, whereby large agglomerations of wealth attract additional wealth to themselves – in the same way that energy does when converted to mass.
· The possession of either wealth or energy provides availability of power.
The implied E=Wc2 [Energy = Wealth * the square of the speed of circulation of money in a free market, perhaps?] can however mislead. Because wealth does not obey the same conservation laws that so simplify the mathematics for Physicists. more>>>
Posted on 10/13/2008 10:47 AM by NER
Monday, 13 October 2008
Muslim students protest about prayer room at RMIT
From The Herald Sun
UP TO 1000 Muslim students at RMIT (Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology) are protesting against sharing a multi-faith prayer room with Christians, Jews and worshippers of other faiths.
RMIT Islamic Society vice-president Mohamed Elrafihi said the university had promised Muslim students their own prayer room at the Swanston St campus.
Five refurbished multi-faith prayer rooms -- including a foot-wash room for Muslims and a prayer room with Arabic signs and oriented towards Mecca -- were opened to students earlier this year.
But Mr Elrafihi said the Islamic-themed prayer room can be booked by other religions, which would interrupt evening Muslim prayer times.
Islamic students have refused to use the new facilities, insisting one room be dedicated for use by Muslims.
"We have nothing against multi-faith, we support multi-faith," Mr Elrafihi said. "The Muslims were promised a dedicated room and that was taken from them. That has caused a lot of stress," Mr Elrafihi said.
While refusing to use the new prayer facilities for the past eight months, up to 600 Muslim students have been worshipping outdoors each Friday in nearby Bowen St, or on other days on the lawns outside RMIT's prayer halls in part of the old Melbourne jail.
RMIT Vice-Chancellor Professor Joyce Kirk said the university had spent significant resources on accommodating Muslim needs.
"RMIT University respects the rights of its students and staff to practise their chosen religions, and provides space for them to do so," Prof Kirk said. "RMIT offers five Muslim-friendly prayer rooms on its Victorian campuses, two in the city, two in Bundoora and one in Brunswick."
She said the new spiritual centre in the city was specifically designed for Muslim students and staff, with separate female and male prayer rooms, washing facilities and social spaces.
She said several rooms were reserved for Muslims at specified times but conceded they could be booked by other faiths during other periods.
She rejected suggestions the university was in any way discriminating against Muslims.
If they are not going to use the space given to them turn it over to other use. Fit it out completely with a cross and bibles. Let them pray on the grass in all weathers, so long as they are not in other people's way.
Posted on 10/13/2008 12:20 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Monday, 13 October 2008
Where The Far Right Meets The Far Left
Both are antisemitic, anti-American and agree Islam is fine and dandy (or at least that Muslims are a bloc that can be useful). Donald Husting writes at Brussels Journal:
When Mussolini turned form socialist agitator to fascist leader, writes Alan Cassels in his book, Fascism, he, “[…] did not regard his actions […] as a betrayal of socialism at all. He merely changed brands of socialism”. Later, with only minor adjustments to their personal beliefs, Nazi leaders were able to secure high-up positions in Communist East Germany.
The fluid nature of neo-Nazism and contemporary Socialism also needs to be stressed. While Leftists across Europe denounce as “Nazis” and “fascists” any party opposed to Islamism, a review of neo-Nazism shows that neo-Nazis are – to the contrary – pro-Islamist. Neo-Nazism and contemporary socialism in fact are almost inseparable in their positions: pro-worker/trade union, anti-American, anti-colonialism/anti-imperialism, anti-neo-Conservative, anti-Israel, and, though sometimes disguised, anti-Semitic. But, as Islamism has become an increasing concern for the West, neo-Nazis and socialists are especially alike in regard to their support for it.
John Rosenthal of Pajamas Media has pointed to a report from the domestic intelligence service of the German city-state of Hamburg, which shows that neo-Nazis – like their socialist counterparts – opposed Pro-Cologne, the citizen’s group recently physically attacked by Leftists and Islamists while protesting the building of a mega-mosque.
Hamburg’s domestic intelligence office’s report shows that while opposed to immigrants generally, German neo-Nazis, “take precautions against criticizing Islamic influences or Islam as such, since the latter is rather ‘to be seen as an ally,’” i.e., in their opposition to the Jews. However, this same position is taken by neo-Nazi organisations in Britain. Final Conflict, a British-based blog/e-magazine that is virulently ant-Semitic and sympathetic to the Palestinians has even linked to a website called “I Love Palestine.” In case you’re wondering about the exact nature of this organisation, its online shop sells a Waffen SS recruiting poster, and Blood and Honor memorabilia, as well as many other similarly repugnant items.
Likewise, at OswaldMosley.com (inspired, of course, by the 20th century British fascist leader, Oswald Mosley) can you find a free e-book called Arab or Jew, the description of which lets the reader know that it is an attack on Zionism, and a defence of the Palestianians. And there is also an article extolling the virtues of “European Socialism” in language that would be entirely at home on Britain’s Socialist Workers Part website – no surprises there.
Another example is a related National Party for Europe (also based on Mosley’s fascist ideology), the policies of which are clearly a form of socialism. One policy promotes trade unionism. Another promotes a united Europe. Another policy calls for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, and an end to cooperating with the US. And, another policy offers the National Party for Europe’s:
“[…] complete support to the Palestinian people and their right to a Palestinian state shall define our policy in the Middle East.”
Why? Because the Palestinians are fighting the Jews. But, in case you’re wondering about the nature of this group as well, its online store sells books including, Ten Points of Fascism, Mosley’s Blackshirts, and, tellingly, Islam and the Third Reich, which, according to the description, “serves to assist in an understanding of the Muslim world today against the background of the resistance against European colonialism before and during World War II”. (Contrary to what you might think, neo-Nazis, like contemporary socialists, are anti-colonial, because it is equated in their imagination with US foreign policy, which, in turn, is believed to be under the control of Zionists/Israel).
Articles also appearing on this site include one explaining that fascism has been “misunderstood”, and another claiming that the London 7/7 terrorist attacks had nothing to do with Islam and everything to do with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. (Another article condemns the BNP for “Islamophobia”, and for being pro-Jewish. In fact every one of the sites mentioned in this article condemns the BNP. Neo-Nazi groups claim the BNP is pro-Jewish and anti-Islamist, and the Socialist Workers Party claim it is “racist”. Considering the positions of the Socialist Workers Party toward Israel and Islamism, however, it seems likely that this must also be a factor.)
However, even closer to the neo-Nazi groups mentioned above, in a piece entitled, The attacks on New York and Washington, published on the Socialist Workers Party’s website, is it stated:
“If bin Laden is indeed shown to be responsible [for the 9/11 terrorist attacks], then it will be yet another case, in the long and sordid history of American imperialism, of blow-back.”
(You’ll note the National Party for Europe uses the same justification for the London bombings.) And, again that the 9/11 attacks:
“[…] were in fact a stark revelation of the nature of global capitalism. Our rulers believed that they could preside over a world heaving with poverty, suffering, and injustice and yet insulate their own metropolises from the consequences. The folly of this belief was exposed as the southern tip of Manhattan disappeared amid smoke and flames. There can be no peace without justice.”
(Bear in mind that this piece – still posted on the Socialist Workers Party website – was written the day after the attacks, when sickening images of innocent people jumping to their deaths from a hundred stories up, were still fresh in the mind, if not still being repeated on television.)
Another article on the website, Roots of Israel’s violence, finally brings the Leftist ideology round full circle to that of the neo-Nazis. And another article, while critical of Islam, more than hints at the contemporary fusion of Leftism, Islamism, and Nazism, that I have meant to highlight:
“The left has made two mistakes in relation to the Islamists in the past. The first has been to write them off as fascists, with whom we have nothing in common. The second has been to see them as “progressives” who must not be criticised. […] The need is for a different approach that sees Islamism as the product of a deep social crisis which it can do nothing to resolve, and which fights to win some of the young people who support it to a very different, independent, revolutionary socialist perspective.”
And there you have it – cue Mussolini.
Posted on 10/13/2008 1:38 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Monday, 13 October 2008
Banjo Pickin' Interlude
Posted on 10/13/2008 4:32 PM by Rebecca Bynum
Monday, 13 October 2008
Recently I posted about a musician who plucked his banjo while undergoing brain surgery to test the effectiveness of the procedure.
The musician's name is Eddie Adcock. I'd say he's still got it.
Posted on 10/13/2008 5:45 PM by Mary Jackson
Monday, 13 October 2008
An Encounter In Saudi Arabia
A Saudi Arabia Experience
Norman Jay Landerman-Moore
By profession, I am a strategic planner. In the early summer of 1974 I was contacted by an associate in New York who asked if I would consider accepting a planning assignment with a service organization contracted with ARAMCO in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. I considered the offer and after sorting out the details determined to accept.
I landed in Dhahran at the recently constructed Saudi airport. I was greeted by a Saudi, an ARAMCO representative, and driven to an apartment complex located in Al Khobar on the Persian Gulf coast. The tenants were chiefly American, British and French engineers, construction management personnel and other professionals, most of whom had extensive experience working abroad in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
After a few weeks, I was called to a meeting at ARAMCO headquarters in Dhahran to discuss infrastructure needs for new housing, community and industrial development. The meeting focused on securing water rights and authorization for pipeline development off the aquifer that extended from the interior mountains eastward to the gulf. Based on political and administrative protocol, the critical discussion was to occur with an Emir (sheikh) from the Saudi government who had jurisdiction over such matters. The meeting was to take place in the ancient citadel city of Al Hofuf located on the northern edge of the Rub Al Khali Desert. Hofuf is an oasis community where the great aquifer surfaces sufficiently to draw water by wells and pumps for irrigating date trees and vegetable crops. I was amazed at the abundance of water in such a desolate region.
We arrived at the appointed time and waited for the Emir. About an hour later he arrived in his black stretch Mercedes with an entourage of servants and staff following in a small caravan of vehicles. The room we were to meet in was bare except for some exquisite carpets, a large banner with the Saudi National emblem, a picture of the King and a couple of tables and chairs. There were no greetings. The first order of business appeared to be to establish “status.” We were instructed to sit on the carpet while a large, ornate high chair was brought in for the Emir. It was clear that he was to be elevated above us during the meeting.
The four of us were served tea from a set of fine silver as a gesture of hospitality. Then the Emir, donning an ornate Arab gown over his pin striped Italian silk suit, began to speak. There was no problem with communication; indeed I was immediately impressed by his "Oxford English." What took me by surprise was that he launched into quotations from the Koran. The one sided dialogue continued for nearly 45 minutes punctuated with the greatness of Allah and the Muslim people, and the “nothingness” of gentiles and infidels. We found ourselves somewhat uncomfortable, socially and physically (I have long legs), but we exercised restraint, waiting for the moment when we could turn to the business agenda.
That moment finally came but only after the Emirs’ concluding remarks. Sternly he looked at each of us and said:
“The world is created by Allah for Islam to rule. You must face it, you will either be Muslim, or you will be dead!”
David, who was in charge of our group, responded, “Your Excellency, we appreciate your counsel, now may we discuss water?” The Emir smiled, seemingly satisfied that his point had been made. We then got down to business.
In light of that event and all that I have studied and witnessed over these past decades, I would suggest that the West is mistaken in making such a sharp distinction between normative and so-called "radical" Islam. I would suggest that the fundamental ideologies expressed by clerics (Imams, Qadhis or Teachers) and Emirs is rife with the conviction that all humanity will become Muslim and that they are not squeamish about the methods to be employed.
You see it is simple. I have no interest in becoming a follower of Islam. I have seen what Islamic religious ideology does to children, women, communities, economies and quality of life. I have a keen interest in enjoying life. I wish to engage in the pursuit of happiness which freedom provides, the freedom we enjoy through the sacrifice of countless men and women, including my ancestors.
[Norman Landerman-Moore is president of Landerman-Moore Associates, a professional services firm engaged in strategic planning and economic development.]
Posted on 10/13/2008 6:11 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 13 October 2008
A Musical Interlude: Don't Be Like That (Abe Lyman's Orch., voc. Paul Neely)
Posted on 10/13/2008 6:56 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Monday, 13 October 2008
Yesterday, Sunday, The Annual World Porridge Making Championships took place in the beautiful little Highland village of Carrbridge in Inverness-shire, Scotland, UK.
Such harmless eccentricity is wonderful and part and parcel of the fabric of life in Britain.
The title of World Porridge Making Champion is awarded to the chef deemed to have made the best traditional porridge using oatmeal, water and salt.
Most contestants also enter the ‘Speciality Porridge’ competition, for porridge with other ingredients added. The winner will receive the Duncan Hilditch Quaich.
(Info: The word ‘spurtle, which is sometimes written as ‘spirtle’, refers to two Scottish kitchen tools made of wood. The flat spatula-like one is used for turning oatcakes and the stick-like one is for stirring porridge in the pan. The non-business end of either can sometimes be ornately carved – usually, but not invariably, into the form of a thistle head.)
Posted on 10/13/2008 7:59 PM by John Joyce
Monday, 13 October 2008
Geert Wilders on the Totalitarianism of Islam
Watch this CBN interview with courageous Dutch politician, Geert Wilders. Wilders, who produced the short film, "Fitna" (discord in Arabic) has raised Western concerns about the ideology of totalitarianism at the core of Islam (submission in Arabic). "Submission" was the the title of another controversial Dutch film produced by the late Theo Van Gogh, murdered in the streets of Amsterdam by a Dutch Moroccan Muslim extremist. “Submission”, about the denigration of women under Islamic doctrine, was scripted by brave Somali Dutch politician Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who fled to sanctuary in the US. Wilders, like Hirsi Ali, is also under Dutch government 24/7 protective custody given threats and Fatwas issued calling for his death. He talks in this CBN interview of being bruited about from jails to military barracks in his native Holland to ensure his personal safety.
Because of an outstanding Interpol warrant for his arrest issued by a Shariah Court in 'moderate' Jordan, Wilders cannot easily travel abroad, even with Dutch security. He must first obtain permission from the country he plans to enters, as he did here in America in September.
Wilders, a self professed atheist, is a vigorous defender of the Judeo Christian ethos that undergirds our precious Western traditions of liberty and freedom. As he tells CBN interviewer David Hurd, there is no 'democratic moderate Islam, full stop'. However, he takes pains to differentiate between Muslims as human beings and the ideology of Islam. He also states that he is not a racist. Rather, he is raising appropriate concerns about the Islamic threat to our cultural and democratic traditions in the West. He also draws attention to the lack of assimilation of Muslim émigrés to countries like his native Holland and the U.K. At one point in this CBN interview, Wilders notes that some Muslim émigrés who have lived in Holland for more than three decades can’t speak a word of Dutch.
Wilders was in New York last month to speak at a Hudson Institute sponsored forum. He ably presented his thesis in a riveting speech with a Churchillian trope entitled "The Winds of Jihad". It was on a day when Iranian Mahdist Madman and arch Holocaust denier, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was holding forth at a Ramadan dinner a few blocks away at the Grand Hyatt Hotel. Hundreds outside the hotel protested his presence and his Nazi-like genocidal doctrine with vitriolic anti-Semitic rhetoric like “Israel is a ‘stinking corpse’ doomed to disappear.”
Wilders brought a warning to America:
I come to America with a mission. All is not well in the old world. There is a tremendous danger looming, and it is very difficult to be optimistic. We might be in the final stages of the Islamization of Europe. This not only is a clear and present danger to the future of Europe itself, it is a threat to America and the sheer survival of the West. The danger I see looming is the scenario of America as the last man standing. The United States as the last bastion of Western civilization, facing an Islamic Europe. In a generation or two, the US will ask itself: who lost Europe? Patriots from around Europe risk their lives every day to prevent precisely this scenario from becoming a reality.
Wilders is also endeavoring with the help of others to create an alliance of patriots to combat the onslaught of rejectionist Islamic doctrine in the West. With the aid of Israeli M.K. Professor Arieh Eldad of the National Union and newly formed Hatikvah party, Wilders is organizing an anti-Jihadist Jerusalem Summit in December. As he noted in his New York speech:
Patriotic parties that oppose Jihad are growing, against all odds. My own party debuted two years ago, with 5% of the vote. Now it stands at 10% in the polls. The same is true of all similarly-minded parties in Europe. They are fighting the liberal establishment, and are gaining footholds in the political arena, one voter at the time.
Now, for the first time, these patriotic parties will come together and exchange experiences. It may be the start of something big. Something that might change the map of Europe for decades to come. It might also be Europe’s last chance.
This December a conference will take place in Jerusalem. Thanks to Professor Arieh Eldad, a member of Knesset, we will be able to watch Fitna in the Knesset building and discuss the jihad. We are organizing this event in Israel to emphasize the fact that we are all in the same boat together, and that Israel is part of our common heritage. Those attending will be a select audience. No racist organizations will be allowed. And we will admit only parties that are solidly democratic.
This conference will be the start of an Alliance of European patriots. This Alliance will serve as the backbone for all organizations and political parties that oppose jihad and Islamization. For this Alliance I seek your support.
Wilders is back briefly in America this week. We have arranged an interesting encounter between Wilders and another fearless advocate of ‘free speech’ and opponent of Islamic intimidation, Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld. They have much in common. The US House of Representatives has passed a federal version of ‘Rachel’s Law’ enacted earlier this year in New York. H.R. 5814
The Free Speech Protection Act of 2008 was introduced by Rep. Peter King (R-NY). S. 3299,
the Senate version was introduced by Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT). Hopefully, it will become law in the waning days of this Congressional session. It is an important bulwark assuring protection of American journalists and publishers from the threat of ‘libel tourism’ cases brought by Islamic figures in foreign courts. The encounter between Ehrenfeld and Wilders may do something more quash the Jordanian Shariah court Interpol Warrant for the arrest of Geert Wilders. Liberty and freedom, whether Ehrenfeld’s or Wilders is too precious and important to be crushed under the tyranny of Jihadist Islam.
Posted on 10/13/2008 8:14 PM by Jerry Gordon