Category Archives: Europe

The 4th Annual Free Thinking Film Festival 2013

Discuss.

[H/T SDA]

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Turley: Shut up and play nice

Shut up and play nice: How the Western world is limiting free speech By Jonathan Turley, October 12, 2012, Washington Post Free speech is dying in the Western world. While most people still enjoy considerable freedom of expression, this right, once … Continue reading

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The coming war between western civilization and Islam.

By Stephen D’Allotte, EdTimes staff. With the fuss over the little film on YouTube denigrating the Prophet of Islam being used as an excuse to escalate, Muslim radicals and Imams (who, in my view, are synonymous with radical Islam), continue … Continue reading

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Apparently not satisfied with killing William’s mother, French paparazzi go after her kids too.

300 years later, the French still continue to try to destroy the British monarchy. It seems for French paparazzi you only need to catch a break in life to be exploitable for fun and profit, and have your private life … Continue reading

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France: Getting High on OP..M

France willfully setting itself up for failure by Erika Johnsen, July 5, 2012 Hot Air France’s socialists recently gained a sizable majority of their parliament, as well as electing the ultimate champagne socialist to the presidency. I’m enjoying following the … Continue reading

Pussified.

Stop stand-up urination for men, Swedish politicians urge

by Lauren O’Neil Posted: June 14, 2012 4:30 PM  CBC Community Blog

Some Swedish politicians say that standing up to empty one’s bladder is unsanitary and less healthy for a man than sitting down. (Blend_Images/iStockphoto)A Swedish political party is taking a stand against upright urination.

At a county council meeting Monday, the Left Party, or Vänsterpartiet, tabled a motion that would require office washrooms to be genderless with a sit-down-only requirement, reported the news agency Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå.

[more]

Cooke: British freedom of speech endangered

 

British Freedom of Speech Endangered
John Stuart Mill, where art thou?

By Charles C. W. Cooke      March 29, 2012 4:00 A.M.

 In Britain, the trend toward the curbing of free expression picked up speed on Monday, when British student Liam Stacey was sentenced to 56 days in prison for posting racist comments on Twitter. When Premier League footballer Fabrice Muamba had a heart attack during a soccer game and was rushed to hospital, a drunk Stacey took to the microblogging site and spewed a series of racially abhorrent tweets into the ether. Other Twitter users — including sports pundit and former top-flight footballer Stan Collymore — quickly noticed his words and reported Stacey to the police, who arrested him and charged him with incitement to racial hatred a few days later.

When Muamba collapsed, said the judge at Stacey’s trial, “not just the footballer’s family, not just the footballing world but the whole world were literally praying for his life. Your comments aggravated this situation.” In fact, it is hard to see how Stacey’s words aggravated anything much at all. What he wrote, utterly appalling and unprintable as it was, had bearing neither on the efficacy of Muamba’s life-saving treatment nor on the likelihood of his survival. It prevented nobody from praying for his life or exercising any of their own rights. And it encouraged nobody to do anything illegal. Sure, what Stacey wrote may have — should have — upset many people. But in a free country, that cannot be a crime.

Explaining his decision to imprison Stacey, the judge noted that he had “no choice but to impose an immediate custodial sentence to reflect the public outrage at what [Stacey had] done.” “To reflect the public outrage”? Translation: British speech law is determined by the sentiments of the mob. That this is the case would constitute a tragedy anywhere that free men live, but it is especially egregious in the land of John Stuart Mill. In On Liberty, Mill averred that “if all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.” His words carried no small print, nor did his associated contention that “there ought to exist the fullest liberty of professing and discussing, as a matter of ethical conviction, any doctrine, however immoral it might be considered.”

It is hard to fathom why exactly Stacey was singled out. It is a sad fact of modern life that people say racist and abhorrent things on social networks and public message boards all the time — YouTube’s comments section, particularly, is a sewer — and yet most go untouched. Given that a popular Twitter reaction to Stacey’s imprisonment on Monday was “I hope he gets raped by a black man in prison” — and there were other, even less charming, variants — one can but ask why such subsequent comments do not constitute as much of an incitement to racial hatred — to violence, perhaps — as the original, and why they are not worthy of the same punishment. If an eye for an eye makes the world blind, an insult for an insult would have seen thousands locked up in British jails this week if the law had been applied consistently.

 

Steyn: Lethally leisured

[Ed. note: from last fall, but still relevant, if not more so.]

Lethally leisured

by Mark Steyn, October 17, 2011

Laframboise: The Royal Society’s blatherfest

The Royal Society’s Blatherfest

by Donna Laframboise, March 24, 2012

A “major international conference” will begin on Monday in London. It’s being hosted by the Royal Society, the oldest science academy in the world and previously the most prestigious.

But over the past decade the Royal Society has abandoned its longstanding neutrality and become a political lobby group.

The depths to which this formerly esteemed body organization has now sunk may be seen on the website for this conference. A number of official blog posts appear there, including one written by the event’s co-chair, Mark Stafford-Smith. It declares:

our science tells us that the Earth has entered the ‘Anthropocene’, a geological era in which human impacts are now as important in driving how the planet operates as geological and astronomical forces have been in past eras. [backup link]

But this is nonsense. As I observed last August, a scientific body called the International Commission on Stratigraphy (ICS) is responsible for naming geological eras. It has made no such determination that a new one has begun.

This strange claim can be traced back to informal musings a decade ago by atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen. He is not a geologist. He’s doesn’t belong to the ICS. He has no more authority to announce the beginning of a new geological era than I do.

The Anthropocene is 100% a political statement. It amounts to a PR strategy on the part of activist scientists. It is a trap laid for gullible journalists. That the co-chair of a conference hosted by the Royal Society has the audacity to suggest that science tells us we’ve entered a new geological era demonstrates not only that science has left the building, it was never there in the first place.

Other conference blog posts are equally disheartening. In one, Liese Coulter – a PR/media relations professional  – tells us that she thinks her husband drives their car too much so she “made him” pay for carbon offsets [backup link].

In another, Sunita Narain – who is described as an Indian environmentalist and political activist – calls the United States “the world’s biggest climate renegade” and says that Australia, Japan, New Zealand and Canada are “other big polluting guns.”

She also makes reference to US “Republicans – Neanderthals who do not believe climate change is real” (backup link). Evidently Ms Narain’s mother never taught her that, when you’re trying to change other people’s minds, publicly denigrating them is rarely a successful strategy.

In yet another conference blog post, “independent environmental educator and musician” Mike Edwards declares:

We face a stark choice: we can either carry on destroying the planet to the point of catastrophe, or we can change our habits…we need to…reconnect with nature and shift towards a value system that doesn’t place material wealth first. [backup link]

Edwards, who considers himself “a climate change expert,” will be part of a panel discussion titled Making the vision reality III – creative, connected science. According to the conference website:

This session will make the case for a new, holistic thinking paradigm that allows space for multiple scientific, artistic and cultural discourses to achieve the vision of a sustainable world. It will be fun, energetic and participatory but will be based on the message that novel thinkers are needed to provide transformatory ideas to address global environmental challenges. [bold added]

Yeah, that sounds like the sort of thing to which the Royal Society should be linking its scientific reputation.

Still another blog post was written by Eva Flinkerbusch, who edits the newsletter and manages the website for the Global Water System Project. She

  • refers to the “alarming state” of freshwater resources
  • declares that the “problem of water scarcity is going to escalate worldwide in the foreseeable future”
  • and discusses “the need for changes in…governance systems”

Her post closes with the typical activist’s rallying cry: “Action has to be taken now.” (backup link)

But matters don’t quite end there. Blogger Bo Kjellén, Sweden’s former chief climate negotiator, pompously opines that “there have to be significant changes in the way our societies and economies operate” – and suggests that humanity’s use of fossil fuels may be analogous to selling our soul to the devil (backup link).

Yvo de Boer – who has served as the UN’s climate chief (and whose academic credentials are apparently in social work) – spends his own blog post lecturing private businesses about how they should run their affairs. In his words:

  • “Companies need to develop resilience…”
  • “businesses must manage risks…” [bold added]
  • “businesses need to fully assess and understand future sustainability risks…”
  • “…strategic planning and strategy development are needed as well…”
  • “businesses needs [sic] to understand the root causes of what affects their operations…” [bold added; backup link]

So if I’m running a business that’s coping with a depressed economy, if I don’t know whether I’ll be able to make payroll next week, does anyone really suppose I’m going to spend five seconds worrying about what a UN bureaucrat thinks I need to do?

I mean, honestly. A lot of money is being spent on this conference. They’re expecting 2,500 people to attend – almost all of whom will arrive there via fossil-fueled modes of transportation.

This is being billed as the “largest gathering of global change and sustainability scientists prior to the Rio+20 Earth Summit” (italics added). But as we can see, many of the individuals involved aren’t scientists at all. They’re politicians and bureaucrats. They’re communications managers and musicians. Most of all, they’re political activists. In some cases, this fact is self-admitted. In others, it’s revealed by how they behave and what they say.

That this conference is being hosted by the Royal Society is nothing short of scandalous.

 

Visit Donna’s blog and order a copy of her book.  You need to read it.      

“Why the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change can’t be trusted.”

Obituary: The United Kingdom, 1707-2011. R.I.P.

May God have mercy on their souls.

Early last November, during a heated discussion with her fellow passengers on a crowded Wimbledon to Croydon tram, a grumpy and stressed 34-year-old former dental receptionist named Emma West proffered up some rather un-PC opinions about immigration and what she saw as the loss of Britain’s identity. The single mother of two remained in her seat throughout, and issued no threats, either physical or verbal, but she complained – profanely – that Britain’s identity has been lost due to excessive immigration (she singled out Poles, Nicaraguans, and “blacks”) and opined that these people should go back and “sort out (their) own countries.”

She was to pay a massive price. At the time, British Transport officers merely escorted her off the tram and waited with her for the next one, but after one of her fellow passengers posted a cellphone video (language warning) of the incident a few weeks later, a nationwide womanhunt commenced – even the leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party got in on the act, issuing an “important appeal” to track her down – and on November 29th West was arrested and charged with racially-aggravated harassment. Denied bail over fears of revenge attacks after her home address was widely circulated online, the distraught West was sent to a category A prison (“the highest security prison in England…for ‘prisoners…whose escape would be highly dangerous to the public or national security'”) and had her children taken away from her by social services.

Now infamous, West became an unwitting lightning rod for inflamed passions on both sides of the immigration debate. British journalist and CNN host Piers Morgan tweeted that she should be deported, scores of “anti-racist” online commenters called for her to be beaten and/or raped, and multiple death threats were issued. On the other side, anti-immigration proponents and white nationalists appropriated her image, and almost bizarrely deified her.

Tough gig for a single working-class mum with a history of severe depression.

A week after Emma West was arrested and jailed, four Somali-born Muslim women who had brutally assaulted a passer-by, rendering her bloody and unconscious with kicks to the head while shouting “kill the white slag!” and “white b****!”, walked free from court. None of them had been charged with any race-related offences.

[H/T - Posted by EBD at December 31, 2011 8:07 PM @ SDA.]