Over the next few weeks, this blog will be setting out in detail the truth about Lutfur Rahman, the extremist-linked mayor of Tower Hamlets, and the full evidence against him.
Finally, however, following the BBC's Panorama on Rahman this week, it looks as if the dam is breaking. A Government investigation is now looking extremely likely. In the days ahead, I will describe the kind of things it should be about.
We start today with the evidence which shows how the Rahman adminstration’s grant-giving in many areas strongly favours Muslim groups, even though their presence in the borough is actually falling. As to where they are going, well into Essex. Chingford. Chafford Hundred. Southend. Below are two examples of what Gilligan is talking about.
Older people's lunch club programme
Of the £907,180 given to run lunch clubs for residents over 50, £515,280 (57 per cent) was allocated to Muslim organisations, to lunch clubs described by the council as exclusively for Bangladeshis or Somalis, or to clubs which from their own publicity are aimed at an exclusively Muslim clientele.
As the council’s own equality impact assessment admits (p5 of PDF), 22 out of the 34 lunch clubs funded (65 per cent) are targeted at ethnic minorities, even though 60 per cent of the borough's over-50s are white and only 23 per cent are Bangladeshi. There was an increase of nine ethnic minority-only lunch clubs from the previous funding round, and “a reduction in lunch clubs for the general population, which primarily impacts the white British, Irish and non-Bangladeshi or Somali ethnic minority population”.
Mother tongue classes
Of the £313,486 in grants for mother tongue lessons, £296,016 (94 per cent) was allocated to Muslim organisations. The neighbouring secular borough of Newham spends money on teaching recent immigrants to speak English. Lutfur’s Tower Hamlets spends money on teaching people not to speak English.
Florida ALAC Passes Second Senate Committee on path to Ultimate Floor Vote
Florida Sate Sen. Alan Hays
The Florida version of American Law for American Courts (ALAC) SB 386 passed the second hurdle today, on a partisan vote of 6 Republicans versus 3 Democrats. The Democrat opponents included Sen. Jeremy Ring, the Chairman of the State Senate Governmental Oversight and Accountability (GO&A) Committee.
It was left to GO&A Deputy Chairman Sen. Alan Hays to advance the legislation to passage at today’s hearing..
We join with other Floridians in commending Sen. Hays for his valued support of SB 386: "acceptance of foreign laws in certain cases." His tenacity, perseverance and collegiality in working with the proponents and his adroit understanding of the politicking involved has made a demonstrable difference endeavoring to pass the Florida version of ALAC s in its fourth try.
Having watched the video of today's Florida Senate GO&A hearing and partisan vote we have provided you with the url link to the Hearing video below.
Please watch beginning at time mark 60 mins through 81 mins.
The bulk of the hearing discussion was comprised of the introduction by Republican Committee member Sen. David Simmons of an amendment that seeks to codify, in his parlance, judge made law He considers that superior to SB386 in that the amendment seeks to perfect a compromise with critics of the bill. After presentation of Simmons' amendment , it was withdraw enabling a vote on SB386 as proposed.
Sen. Hays endeavored to show our video interview with Rabbi Hausman to the Committee. At the request of Committee Chair Ring, Sen. Hays presented Rabbi Jonathan Hausman's professional bona fides to comment on Israeli family law recognition of rabbinic decrees. Hays focused on the Rabbi’s multifaceted qualifications as an ordained pulpit rabbi, Member of the Bars of Pennsylvania and Connecticut and extensive knowledge of both Jewish Halacha and Islamic Sharia. In the presentation by the Florida Bar International Law section we noted the ad hominem attack against Rabbi Hausman for being an ally of a Dutch Member of Hague Parliament, Geert Wilders and leader of the Freedom Party. Further, this line of attack was taken up by GO&A Chair Jeremy Ring about the lack of Family Law testimony from that section of the Florida bar association. It was also reflected in the comments of the Emerge USA Muslim group representative complaining about the bill not being heard by Senate Child and Family dominated by Senators concerned about alleged denial of Israeli divorces. That clearly is the misinformed argument promoted by the ADL in a mass email campaign to the Florida Jewish community just prior to today’s hearing. The Florida Chamber of Commerce Representative argued that SB386 was complicated impacting on international transactions and small business owners. We suspect that the ADL, Florida Family and International Law sections of the state bar association, Emerge USA Muslim advocacy group and Sen. Simmons will put in their final strokes at the next stop, the Senate Rules Committee.
So far on the family law matters we have yet to see introduced the video evidence by either or both Professor Margaret McClain and especially Floridian Yasmeen A. Davis. Ms. Davis was rescued by her family from an abduction and removal to Saudi Arabia by her father in violation of state, federal and international law against parental abductions. This is graphic testimony of the war on women under Sharia.
Perhaps given today’s successful vote on SB 386, there might be movement in the Florida House on the companion measure, HB903 that passed on the Subcommittee on Civil Justice on March 18th. The subcommittee is Chaired by District 32 Rep. Larry Metz who is one of ALAC’s most knowledgeable proponents. He sponsored the legislation in the 2013 legislative session in Tallahassee. One indication of that came in a meeting that occurred at a recent dinner of the Allen West Foundation in Palm Beach, Florida. District 2 Florida House Representative, Warren Bryan “Mike” Hill and Rabbi Hausman were featured speakers at the event. Rep. Hill when he learned of Rabbi Hausman’s involvement in the pending Florida ALAC legislation said he voted for the measure at the House Subcommittee hearing and would vote for it when it reached the Florida House floor. It appears likely that the House version may be heard shortly in the full Judiciary Committee where Rep. Metz may play a key role in arguing for passage.
As baseball great and master of malapropisms, Yogi Berra might opine, "It ain’t over till the fat lady sings." Nevertheless, today’s Senate GO&A passage may indicate that the momentum could be building up a head of steam for ultimate passage in the 2014 Legislature Session in Tallahassee.
A friend in France having recommended the film The Grand Budapest Hotel, I went to see it recently. Tastes evidently vary, even among friends.
The film was a long and painfully extended joke about Central Europe that was not very funny to begin with and the script was completely without the wit that might just have carried off the original bad idea. Among many other irritations was Ralph Fiennes' repeated use of the word 'Goddam' in an English accent. But the worst of all was the claim in the credits at the end that the film was inspired by the writings of the great Austrian writer Stephan Zweig. This seemed to me a little like saying that the Sex Pistols were inspired by the music of Bach. Zweig was a man of the most refined and subtle sensibility, and would have detested the crudity and insensitivity of the film's plot, its dialogue and jokes.
The most interesting thing about the evening for me was buying the ticket. The young man at the counter said something unintentionally significant. 'You'll enjoy the film, there are a lot of famous actors in it.' He did not say that there were many good actors or good performances in it (there were none of the latter, at least): fame in his estimation was its own justification, to be enjoyed for its own sake.
If fame were awarded only, or even mainly, on merit there would have been little to remark in what he said, but this is scarcely the case. Thanks to the ubiquity and speed of electronic communication there has never been a time when fame and merit were so easily disconnected. It is not possible to put a date to the beginning of the cult of celebrity - a writer like Bernard Shaw was already a master of self-advertisement as the key to success - but fame is now granted with a facility that makes the hereditary principle seem a fair and sensible way to award the honours of the world.
We should make every effort to see the world through the eyes of others; but try as I might to understand, the cult of celebrity mystifies me. For example, on the home-page of my internet server today there appears the pasty face of a young woman with the question 'Can you recognise this celebrity without makeup?' I am far nearer to the mentality of a sadhu in the Himalayas than to that of someone interested in such a question. I find this painful: it means I cannot understand half the population of my own country.
1. You have the right to be encased in a 15 pound canvass coffin otherwise known as a burka, never again to feel a soft summer breeze on your skin or the warmth of the spring sunshine on your face.
2. You have the right to have your honor protected even if it kills you. Over 95% of all honor killings are carried by Muslim men against their daughters and wives. And yes, on numerous occasions it has happened in the United States and Canada.
3. You have the right to an absolutely free clitoridectomy. No charge for anesthesia and no charge for antibiotics, because there aren’t any. Thousands of women die every year from loss of blood and infection. But what the heck, it’s all done to please Allah and Mohammed. Shut up and stop whining.
4. You have the right to be imprisoned in your own home. You cannot leave the house without the permission of your husband or some other male in your household. Your six old son can slap you around with impunity. After all he is a Muslim male.
5. You have the Allah given right to be one of four wives, plus all those sex concubines your sorry husband desires. Hey, your husband can engage in a temporary marriage as short as one night (Think of it as an Islamic sanctioned one night stand.)
6. You have the right to be a piece of property. You are non-human. You rank alongside your husband’s car, his motorcycle, the house or his camel (if he really likes you).
7. You have the right to lose your children if your husband decides to divorce you. Under Sharia all children automatically are awarded to the Muslim father. Any number of American women have found this out the hard way. Their children have been kidnapped and spirited away to some Muslim country that has no extradition treaty with the United States.
8. You also have the right to a speedy free divorce. Your hubby can divorce you by simply telling you three times “I divorce you.” Some Imams allowed you to be texted this message. Oh, by the way you have no recourse if you wish to divorce him. Only men are allowed to divorce their wives. Surprise, surprise there is no alimony for you under Sharia. Well at least, there are no protracted court battles.
9. You have the right to be worth half of a man as far as your testimony in an Islamic court. So it takes a mere three women to challenge the truthfulness of a man’s assertions.
10. You have the right to be raped by any Muslim man and there is nothing you can do about it. If you try to press charges this is tantamount to admitting you had sexual relations with a man who is not your husband. You also have the right to be stoned. Remember in the twisted ideology of Islam it is always the fault of the woman.
I once heard Yasir Qadi, the pint-sized prevaricating Imam of Memphis Muslims say, “Women in Islam have their rights also.” Well this rock star of Ayatollahdom was right. Women have the right to be beaten, abused, raped, tortured, stoned and killed under Islamic Sharia law and precious little else.