Saturday, June 30, 2007

Return of the Gag

I have put our old friend back at the head of this blog.

Feedback (positive or negative) welcome
Free Speech Victory in Washington State

We read:

"A unanimous Washington state supreme court ruling, issued this morning, reversed a lower court ruling that held radio commentary by Seattle's KVI-570's Kirby Wilbur and John Carlson made "in-kind" contributions when they promoted an anti-gas tax voter initiative on their shows in 2005.

This is all a bit hard to follow at first but it is a case of politicians attacking a radio show with the claim that political comments made on the show are a form of advertising and should be treated as such -- with all the restrictions that implies. It was a heavy attack on free speech but the State court unanimously gave it the boot. The judges said:

"Today we are confronted with an example of abusive prosecution by several local governments. San Juan County and the cities of Seattle, Auburn, and Kent (hereinafter Municipalities) determined to file a legal action ostensibly for disclosure of radio time spent discussing a proposed initiative. This litigation was actually for the purpose of restricting or silencing political opponents and was quickly dismissed after the filing deadline for the initiative

The Coulter/Edwards Confrontation on MSNBC

Dat ole double-standard again:

Elizabeth Edwards is complaining bitterly that Ann Coulter wished her gorgeous husband dead in a terrorist attack.

Both she and TV host Chris Mattews have somehow neglected to mention that Coulter's statement was in response to Bill Maher's saying that he wished Dick Cheney would die in a terrorist attack.

Coulter's point was that it must be permissible to say such a thing, since it was given a pass when Maher said it.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Rules on Campaign Ads Eased by High Court

We read:

"The Supreme Court yesterday substantially weakened restrictions on the kinds of television ads that corporations and unions can finance in the days before an election, providing special interest groups with the opportunity for a far more expansive role in the 2008 elections."


A small victory for free speech.
Supreme Court Protects Faith-Based Subsidies from Suit

We read:

"The Supreme Court on Monday closed the courthouse door on a lawsuit challenging the Bush administrations use of taxpayer money to support its Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives."

Angelina, Aladdin, 24, Racist?

We read:

"The front of the Washington Post Style section on Saturday was dominated by two features on Hollywood stereotyping. At the bottom was Teresa Wiltz suggesting that Angelina Jolie playing Afro-Cuban Mariane Pearl in "A Mighty Heart" is somehow comparable to blackface minstrel shows. But that's not as odd as the top story by William Booth on stereotyped Arab villains, illustrated by the cartoon image of Jafar, the villainous vizier in the Disney cartoon "Aladdin." Earth to the Post: everyone in "Aladdin," heroes and villains, is Arab.

Booth's story actually only raised the issue of the opening song lyrics of "Aladdin," which joked about vicious ear-slicing barbarians, which the Arab-American activists successfully pressed Disney to remove. After that scrubbing, I imagine the children would also hear about "Ali Baba and the Forty Upstanding Merchants." The star of the Booth piece, retired professor Jack Shaheen, also deplored the Fox drama "24" as "the worst of smears" for portraying American Arabs as the terrorist next door.


Thursday, June 28, 2007

OK for a Leftist Icon to Use "Homophobic" Language?

We read:

"Gore Vidal is up in arms over a new play that imagines him being sexually attracted to Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh.

Edmund White's "Terre Haute," which recently finished a successful run in Britain, involves the relationship between a thinly veiled, Vidal-like writer named James and a McVeigh-like killer, Harrison.

Vidal, 81, told the London Observer: "Edmund White will yet be feeling the wrath of my lawyers. It's unethical and vicious to make it very clear that this old faggot writer is based on me, and that I'm madly in love with Timothy McVeigh, who I never met."


Ann Coulter was condemned all over the net for using the same word. Listen for the silence about Vidal using it. And Vidal is using it in an abusive rather than a descriptive way, unlike Coulter. And Isaiah Washington lost his TV job for using the word too.
Strange Australian Rulings

We read:

"Even a child knows green monsters do not really exist, and UFOs do not fly around our cities, right? Wrong, says the Advertising Standards Bureau, which has upheld complaints against a McDonald's television commercial, because it encourages children to accept lifts from space aliens.

Scantily clad pole-dancing mothers, on the other hand, are acceptable vehicles for advertising fast-food chicken, the bureau's board has ruled, despite numerous complaints that described the ad as pornographic, degrading, sexist and idiotic......

Defending multiple complaints against its ad, another fast-food chain successfully argued the level of nudity used "was essential to ensuring authenticity". The ad shows a topless pole-dancing mother using fictitious "Nando-fix" skin patches and gum to control her craving for Nando's chicken....

The board of the Advertising Standards Bureau agreed, ruling that pole dancing was "a popular form of exercise" and "was not incompatible with family values" [Those board members sure sound like groovy guys!]


There is a video of the alleged "family values" ad here

Nando's chicken IS pretty good, by the way.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

SCOTUS Discovers Previously Unknown Provision in the Constitution

We read:

"A US high school student who was suspended for unfurling a banner saying "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" did not have his rights violated, a divided US Supreme Court ruled today, in its first major decision on student free-speech rights in nearly 20 years. The high court's conservative majority ruled that a high school principal in Juneau, Alaska, did not violate the student's constitutional free-speech rights by confiscating the banner and then suspending him.

Student Joseph Frederick says the banner's language was meant to be nonsensical and funny, a prank to get on television as the Winter Olympic torch relay passed by the school in January 2002. But school officials say the phrase "bong hits" refers to smoking marijuana. Principal Deborah Morse suspended Frederick for 10 days because she said the banner advocated or promoted illegal drug use in violation of school policy.

Mr Frederick, 18, had been standing on a public sidewalk across the street from the school when Ms Morse grabbed his banner and crumpled it. Students had been allowed out of class to watch the event.

The majority opinion written by Chief Justice John Roberts said the court agreed with Ms Morse that those who viewed the banner would interpret it as advocating or promoting illegal drug use, in violation of school policy. Justice Roberts, who was appointed to the court by President George W. Bush, said a principal may, consistent with the First Amendment, restrict student speech at a school event when it is reasonably viewed as promoting illegal drug use.


Now where do I find that exemption concerning illegal drug use in the Constitution?
Racism Here, Racism there, Racism Everywhere

A black American singer is touring Australia and was booked to appear on an Australian TV talk and entertainment show hosted by Rove McManus (Second pic above):

"US rapper Xzibit has walked out on a scheduled appearance on Rove Live after what he claims were racist comments from production staff.

After an apparent misunderstanding, the rapper posted an entry on his blog titled "Rove the Racist", saying the "sh*t was wack" when an argument started over a plan to have him sing with Michael Buble.

A production crew member told Xzibit that the show's audience wouldn't stand for a full minute of rapping and that the segment could only last 42 seconds, though the production company denies this happened.

According to the artist, the crew member then told him: "you know we came a long way just having you on the program".

Xzibit took this to be a racist remark and immediately "went out the front door hopped in my sh*t and rolled out", which presumably means he got into his car and left.


I must confess to the personal feeling that Australian TV screens were better off without him.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

No Separation of Church and State when it Comes to Muslims

And who says so? That great protector of separation -- the ACLU

"Muslim leaders in Metro Detroit have decided not to raise private money to pay for two footbaths at a local college campus now that the American Civil Liberties Union has said the plan doesn't pose constitutional problems.

The University of Michigan-Dearborn's plan to spend $25,000 on the footbaths was criticized on conservative blogs and radio shows this month. Critics said using public money for the project would violate the First Amendment, which says governments can't favor or subsidize religions.

Muslims are required to wash body parts, including feet, up to five times daily before prayers.


I guess Islam is now America's Established Church. There are some extended comments on the matter here
ACLU to hand out cameras to monitor police

For once I heartily agree with the ACLU. In many States it is illegal to photograph police -- leading to many abuses. Where cameras are allowed, much police misbehaviour has been caught. Libertarian Radley Balko gives some of the history of it. It's not only blacks that the police abuse

"St. Louis - Police who work the Fairground neighborhood will soon be under video surveillance by the people they serve, an activist group said Wednesday.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Eastern Missouri first announced in December 2005 its intention to outfit residents to record city officers.

The program, Project Vigilant, has spent one and a half years in development.

Officials with the local ACLU chapter have said that city officers often mistreat and target blacks and that it hopes cameras would deter police abuse and smooth out police-neighborhood relations.


My only objection to the above is that it is tokenism. If the ACLU were serious about reining in rogue police, they would be campaigning to have legal bans on photographing police overturned in the many States where they apply. In the above case, they have chosen one State where it is legal to photograph police.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Non-juror's "hanging" remark leads to retrial

Anything to stop a black thug being fried:

"The New Jersey Supreme Court reversed the conviction of a death row inmate Tuesday because an alternate juror at his murder trial told co-workers he was going to "get me a good rope so when we hang him it won't break."

In a 6-1 ruling, the court said the remarks, by a white juror trying a black defendant, evoked the image of lynch law and suggested the juror was racially biased and had prejudged the outcome.

Though the juror said he made none of the remarks to other panelists and did not deliberate on the verdict, other jurors might have been tainted, the court found.


The guy who made the remark had nothing to do with the verdict nor did he make the remark to any of those who DID decide the verdict -- but the verdict was still "tainted".

What if all "not guilty" verdicts that come from juries that include a Leftist were challenged? Leftists after all believe that everything is due to "poverty" and that no-one is responsible for their own actions. That sounds like bias to me. Would such a verdict be "tainted"? And what if one juror had a friend who believed all that Leftist stuff? Surely that would "taint" the verdict too?

A lot of scope for overturning jury verdicts these days, it would seem. Maybe it might be possible to get O.J. Simpson yet!
Michigan: Whites Must not Look Black

If "black is beautiful", why not?

"While most of the crowd that lined the sidewalks last week for the 59th annual Dexter Memorial Day parade came to celebrate and remember, some left disgusted and angry. The source of their rage was a float that at best wasn't appropriate for this kind of event and at worst was racist and offensive....

The offending float, sponsored by David Myers Photography in Dexter, consisted of a red pickup truck with a platform float hitched to the truck's back end.... All of that was overshadowed by two female dancers dressed in blackface style makeup with pitch black face paint on exposed skin, wigs that appeared to emulate the racial qualities of an African-American's hair and pink lipstick. The paint also was noticeably absent from the women's palms. ...

To Diskin and others, it appeared as if someone was paying homage to a theatrical style known for playing a role in shaping racial stereotypes that remain to this day. In 1993, former "Cheers" star Ted Danson caused a firestorm of controversy after appearing in "blackface" at a Friars Club roast.

According to Myers, the float had nothing to do with race, but instead was a spoof of commercials for Apple's portable iPod music player. In the commercials, dark silhouetted characters dance against bright-colored backgrounds, with only their distinctive physical characteristics being their body shape and a pair of prominent white iPod corded earphones.


So any hint of depicting blacks is to mock them. Interesting view. Sounds racist to me.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

SCOTUS bans Free Speech about Athletics

We read:

"The Supreme Court said Thursday that athletic associations can enforce limits on recruiting high school athletes without violating coaches' free speech rights. The high court ruled in a longstanding dispute between the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association the private school Brentwood Academy.

The school challenged a rule of the TSSAA, which governs high school sports in the state. The association bars schools from contacting prospective students about their sports programs.

In a unanimous ruling, the court said that 'hard-sell tactics directed at middle school students could lead to exploitation, distort competition between high school teams and foster an environment in which athletics are prized more highly than academics.'

Games have rules, Justice John Paul Stevens said for the court. 'It is only fair that Brentwood follow them.'"


Game rules trump the U.S. Constitution??
Aussies Must not Call Aussies Aussies?

"Aussie" (pronounced "ozzie") is an abbreviation for "Australian" and is a common way for Australians to refer to one-another. It is however most used as shorthand for "Australians of Anglo-Celtic background" -- as the latter expression is a tad cumbersome. It DOES tend to imply that a person has all the traditions and attitudes that are typically Australian.

So when an Aussie participant -- Andrew Temmett -- in the Australian version of the "Big Brother" show used the term "Aussie" to refer to "Australians of Anglo-Celtic background", various "sensitive" souls accused him of being "racist". The show has on it a number of Australians who are not of Anglo-Celtic background and Temmett implied that they were not "Aussies". He was just using ordinary Aussie speech in doing so and was not being in any way malicious.

So he was accused of being racist. I suppose he COULD have said "Australians of Anglo-Celtic background" but on Big Brother?? It probably would not have helped anyway as the sensitive souls seem to believe that there should NEVER be any reference to ANY racial origins -- except if you are praising a racial minority, of course.

Perhaps I should note that most "Australians of non-Anglo-Celtic background" are Asian and are in general very successful members of Australian society. Being an "Aussie" is not a reference to any real-life superiority in any respect. Marriages and other relationships between Aussie males and women of Asian descent are also quite common. My own son is in such a relationship -- with my emphatic approval.

Details here.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

The Right Wing Domination Of Talk Radio And How To End It

The heading above is from a Leftist site. They go on to say:

"The Center for American Progress and Free Press today released the first-of-its-kind statistical analysis of the political make-up of talk radio in the United States. It confirms that talk radio, one of the most widely used media formats in America, is dominated almost exclusively by conservatives.

The new report - entitled "The Structural Imbalance of Political Talk Radio" - raises serious questions about whether the companies licensed to broadcast over the public radio airwaves are serving the listening needs of all Americans.


One guess what their solution is to this "problem"? More government regulation of course!

The fact that Leftist talk radio has been tried (Jim Hightower and Air America, for instance) and failed to get much of an audience was not mentioned. Most people just don't want to listen to whiners and scolds. They just want to listen to people who make sense.

Quite a few other bloggers have commented on this latest attack: e.g. here and here.
Must not Disrespect a Flag that is even SIMILAR to a Mexican Flag

You can burn the U.S. flag or do anything you like with it: Even use it as underwear. Americans do it. People all over the world do it. And such usage is in fact PROTECTED by U.S. law.

But when we get to the Mexican flag we have much weaker egos to deal with:

"Mexico has complained to Australia's media regulator after contestants on the Big Brother television show threw goo-filled balloons at the Mexican flag as part of a game.

During the show's "Mexican Night" challenge last Friday, contestants dressed in mariachi outfits played musical chairs and ate chili con carne - a dish almost unknown in Mexico - to win points.

One of the rounds of the game showed a team protecting the Mexican flag against slime balloons thrown by a rival team.

The flag displayed the Mexican national symbol - an eagle devouring a snake on top of a cactus - in the middle but had the green, white and red colours in the wrong order.


And how awful not to know what Mexicans eat! The fact that most Mexican restaurants in Australia do serve chili con carne is totally irrelevant, of course.

Even more irrelevant is the fact that I have some good chili con carne recipes up on my Recipe blog. See here. Scroll down a bit.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Dems Trying to "Get" Conservative Broadcasters

Conservative speech is hate-speech, after all:

"The heads of the House committee and subcommittee overseeing communications issues, respectively, have asked the National Telecommunications & Information Administration (NTIA) to study the use of "telecommunications to commit hate crimes."

While NTIA, which is the Bush administration's telecommunications policy advisory arm, already produced a study on the topic under the first president Bush back in 1992, Reps. John Dingell and Ed Markey urged it to update the study given the rise in the Internet since them. But, according to a release from the commitee issued Monday, they also said they are also "particularly" interested in studying "uses by broadcast facilites licensed on behalf of the public by the FCC, and whether such uses convey messages of bigotry or hatred, creating a climate of fear and inciting individuals to commit hate crimes."

A committee source would not say what had engendered that particular concern about broadcasters' conveying "messages of bigotry and hatred," adding that it was a general query rather than targeted at any one group. But some Democrats and media activist groups have been highly critical of conservative talk radio, labeling it hate speech.

Must not Depict Mexicans as Mexicans

A game developer replies to critics who call his games "racist":

"Total Overdose and Chili Con Carnage, titles I helped develop at Deadline Games, were both targets of this type of criticism. When we designed these games, our goal was to provide a well-rounded, entertaining experience on many levels. We wanted exciting gameplay, but we were just as interested in having a compelling story, cast of characters, and setting, which is why we invested a great deal of energy towards researching the culture of Mexico, so we could produce an experience that was drawn from accurate source material.

When researching for Total Overdose, we spent a great deal of time in Mexico, taking over 6,000 photos-photos that were the basis for the vast majority of the textures that appeared in the game. We visited a variety of nightclubs to influence the settings and humor of the game, and we spent time in the company of self-styled gangsters to get a flavor for how they spoke and what they said.

When recording dialogue for both games, we employed Mexican-American voice actors to ensure that we would be providing accurate representations. And when it was time to decide on the soundtrack, we chose to include music from several acclaimed underground Mexican bands, including Molotov, who enjoyed the game to such a great extent that they offered to record unique tunes for a sequel.

However, in reviews, forums, and blogs following the releases of both games, some people slammed Deadline for being bigoted towards Mexicans. While we did employ stereotypes we considered lighthearted and humorous, our intent was most certainly not to cast Mexican individuals in a derogatory light. In fact, we continue to receive fan mail from Mexican gamers who love the games and praise us for depicting our cartoon version of Mexico as a modern, if corrupt, place.


Thursday, June 21, 2007

TV Networks Super-sensitive about Condom Ad

We read:

"A new commercial for Trojan condoms, which launches this week, is getting flimsy reception at some major networks. In fact, Fox and CBS have both rejected the commercial, the NY Times reports. In a written response to Trojan, Fox said that it had rejected the spot because, "Contraceptive advertising must stress health-related uses rather than the prevention of pregnancy." In its rejection, CBS wrote, "while we understand and appreciate the humor of this creative, we do not find it appropriate for our network even with late-night-only restrictions." .....

In the new spot, women in a bar are surrounded by anthropomorphized, cellphone-toting pigs. One shuffles to the men's room, where, after procuring a condom from a vending machine, he is transformed into a head-turner in his 20s. When he returns to the bar, a fetching blond who had been indifferent now smiles at him invitingly. Directed by Phil Joanou, the commercial is entertaining. But it also has a message, spelled out at the end: "Evolve. Use a condom every time." ...

"The `Evolve' ad does a nice job of being humorous, but it's also a serious call to action," Daniels told the Times. "The pigs are a symbol of irresponsible sexual behavior, and are juxtaposed with the condom as a responsible symbol of respect for oneself and one's partner." ....

"We always find it funny that you can use sex to sell jewelry and cars, but you can't use sex to sell condoms," Carol Carrozza, vice president of marketing for Ansell Healthcare, which makes LifeStyles condoms, told the Times. "When you're marketing condoms, something even remotely suggestive gets an overly analytical eye when it's going before networks' review boards."

British Food Fascism Hits Egg Advertisement

We read:

"Fifty years after Britons were implored to "Go to work on an egg", an advertising watchdog has banned a revival of the campaign, saying that it breaches health guidelines. Plans to mark the anniversary by broadcasting the original television advertisements featuring Tony Hancock have had to be called off.

The ban by the Broadcast Advertising Clearance Centre, which vets television advertisements, was condemned as ridiculous yesterday by the novelist Fay Weldon, who used to work in advertising and helped to create the campaign. "I think the ruling is absurd," she said. "We seem to have been tainted by all the health and safety laws. If they are going to ban egg adverts then I think they should ban all car adverts, because cars really are dangerous, and bad for the environment.

The advertising clearance centre, a government-backed watchdog, says that it blocked the campaign because eating an egg for breakfast every day was not a "varied diet". ....

The egg information service offered to add a line to the adverts saying that eggs should be eaten as part of a varied diet. The compromise was rejected.

The egg information servicesaid it was shocked by the ruling. It said eggs were a healthy food recommended by nutritionists and many other advertisers promote their products to be eaten every day, "so we are very surprised eggs have been singled out.


For a clear example of how official health policy can be disastrously wrong, see todays posts on FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The old "Blackface" Controvesy Surfaces in Northern England

From Barrow in Furness:

"A drama group's plan to have white actors "black up" for a performance of a famous stage musical has plunged it into a race row.

Anti-racism campaigners have condemned Grange Operatic Society's decision as "stupid" and "offensive".

Others called it "dehumanising" towards black people.

But Grange Town Council, which owns Victoria Hall where the show is due to be staged, approved the plans at its meeting on Monday. Rehearsals begin in September for the society's planned staging of the Jerome Kern/Oscar Hammerstein musical Show Boat.

Both the stage show and its film version have been heavily criticised in the past for stereotyping black people and for its use of language, including the word "n****r".

Grange Operatic Society says it will use the term "coloured folk".


It is dehumanizing to have black faces?? Both Marx & Engels and Hitler regarded blacks as not fully human but it is strange to hear that in Britain today.
Canada: Leftist Abuse In Reply To Reasoned Argument

Read here a moderate and reasoned argument by a Henry Brechun in favour of immigrants to Canada being given more encouragement to assimilate to Canadian society. Among other things, he offers examples of what happens when minorities fail to assimilate and he does not mention race in general or any particular race. Nor does he abuse anyone.

Now read this reply from a Leftist. There is no reasoned argument in it at all. It is six paragraphs of nothing but abuse -- with an accusation of "racism" leading the charge of course.

It just shows that all the Left have really got is hate. Facts and reasoned argument are fundamentally alien to them.

You can of course see much the same fact-free abuse in comments that Leftists leave on conservative blogs and I certainly get the same all the time from Leftists who email me but it is nice to have such a clearcut example to point to as this little Canadian hater, Heather Corrigan by name.

I have saved copies of both articles to disk in case embarrassment causes them to be taken down at some stage

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Homosexual teacher objects to word "gay" -- uses "N-word"

This is all sorta amusing:

"A Nashville middle school teacher who equated calling something "gay" with the use of the N word has been suspended for three days without pay. Stephen Henry, a sixth-grade teacher at Creswell Arts Magnet School, overheard a student describe something as "gay." Henry approached the girl who is reportedly African American and asked her how she would feel if he were to use the N word.

The girl later complained to her parents.... The student's mother said she believed Henry was not intending to insult the girl but middle school students are too young for such a discussion.

Henry has said he intends to appeal the suspension. In addition to teaching he was recently elected vice president of the Metro Nashville Education Association. He also is vice president of the Tennessee LGBT Equality Project.


Young people do routinely use "gay" to mean "stupid" (I wonder why?) so I guess that the teacher did not like that but NOTHING justifies white people using the dreaded "N-word" in America today, it seems.
Hey! Someone is criticizing ME!

This blog is all about criticizing infractions of free speech and the only people who argue with me about what I write are normally my own readers. And they certainly don't always agree with me. However, some fat guy in Michigan has put up a post on Science Blogs criticizing a post I put up both here and on STACLU.

His argument is fundamentally a legalistic one but maybe I should say a few words about it. He is talking about the case where some California Christians were forbidden from putting up on a noticeboard a flier containing such dreaded words as "natural family", "marriage" and "family values". I pointed out that forbidding these words seemed to be based on the view that they were hate speech directed at homosexuals.

My critic says that the court ruling supporting the ban has nothing to do with hate speech. He says: "The issue in the case was the application of Pickering, which requires judges to apply a balancing test between free speech rights and the administrative needs of the employer

So the administrative needs of the employer required them to ban use of "natural family," "marriage" and "family values"! Pretty strange administrative needs! My post went to the heart of WHY the empoyer had such strange needs and I stand by my view that the need arose from a perception and treatment of the words as hate speech. The fact that the Christians were threatened with being fired over it certainly reinforces that impression.

I called my critic a "fat guy in Michigan" just for a stir. "Stirring the possum" is something of a habit we Australians have. But he did accuse me of "singing an absurd song" so maybe an improvement in manners on his part might get him more favourable mention. He is at least an intelligent critic and has an argument -- both of which are routinely missing from the emails I get from Leftists.


I see that my critic has replied to this post. He refuses to look at anything but the law and I refuse to look at anything but the total context in which the law was applied -- so it is rather a dialogue of the deaf. His narrowness of thinking does however show in that he closes his post by accusing me of exactly what I said was characteristic of Leftists. A shouting match seems to be the limit of his polemical talents.

Monday, June 18, 2007

American Court Overturns Restrictive British Libel Judgment

British libel laws make it very difficult to expose corruption, political or otherwise. If you accuse anybody of dishonesty or corruption, you can be sued, of course. But to defend yourself in Britain you then have to become the equivalent of an official prosecutor and prove your case fully against the corrupt person. You have to become the equivalent of a team of detectives and a prosecutor all rolled up into one.

That is so difficult that free speech about dishonesty and corruption is impossible in Britain for anybody except the media -- who have recently won an exemption from the laws concerned.

In American law, by contrast, the onus is on the person "libelled" to prove that the allegations about him are untrue. The American system gives primacy to protecting free speech, in accordance with the First Amendment.

So when a Saudi financier of terrorism was exposed as such in a book by an American writer, the Saudi sued her in a British court and won. Her response was to go to court in New York and seek a declaration that the British judgment was unenforceable in America. The Second Circuit has now backed her up.

So restrictive British law can not now prevent Americans writing in America from exposing British corruption. I look forward to the fireworks!

Details here.
AutoAdmit Finally in the Firing Line

We read:

"It bills itself as the world's "most prestigious college discussion board", giving a glimpse into law school admissions policies, post-graduate social networking and the hiring practices of major law firms. But the AudoAdmit site, widely used by law students for information on schools and firms, is also known as a venue for racist and sexist remarks and career-damaging rumors.

Now it's at the heart of a defamation lawsuit that legal experts say could test the anonymity of the Internet. After facing lewd comments and threats by posters, two women at Yale Law School filed a suit on June 8 in US District Court in New Haven, Connecticut, that includes subpoenas for 28 anonymous users of the site, which has generated more than seven million posts since 2004.

According to court documents, a user on the site named "STANFORDtroll" began a thread in 2005 seeking to warn Yale students about one of the women in the suit, entitled "Stupid Bitch to Enter Yale Law". Another threatened to rape and sodomise her, the documents said.


I blogged on 5th about the incredible immunity this site has enjoyed so far.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

California School Sued for Banning "God"

We read:

"A Michigan public interest law firm filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the Poway Unified School District on Monday, arguing that school officials violated a math teacher's constitutional rights when they order him to remove two banners with the words "God" and "Creator" on them from his classroom walls.

The lawsuit alleges that the school district violated Westview High School teacher Bradley Johnson's freedom of speech when officials ordered him to take down the banners in January after more than 25 years of displaying them because they conveyed a religious message.

The banners, measuring approximately 7 feet long by 2 feet wide, carried the phrases: "In God We Trust," "One Nation Under God," "God Bless America," "God Shed His Grace on Thee" and "All Men Are Created Equal, They are Endowed By Their Creator," the lawsuit said.

All of which are phrases from either historical texts, like the Declaration of Independence, patriotic songs or the Pledge of Allegiance, said Robert Muise, an attorney with the Thomas More Law Center who is handling the case.

"Here you have educational banners that convey messages from our religious history," Muise said Tuesday by phone, adding that the banners were "educational" in nature and serve a clear purpose in public schools, helping teachers, like Johnson, to educate students to be better informed citizens.....

Peter Scheer, the executive director of the California First Amendment Coalition agreed, saying that the phrases were a representation of America's history, and as such, are an important aspect of a student's education. "No one in their right minds would think that to read segments or excerpts from the great founding documents of this country which include invocations of the Almighty, that that could conceivably violate some students' religious rights," Scheer said.

In addition to alleging that the district violated Johnson's California and U.S. constitutional rights by restricting his speech, the lawsuit said that this restriction "serves no educational purpose, is not reasonably related to any legitimated pedagogical concern, and conveys a government-sponsored message of disapproval of and hostility toward religion."

Johnson is asking that the district be prohibited from enforcing such "viewpoint-based" restriction on certain educational messages and that he be awarded nominal damages for the past loss of his constitutional rights, as well as have the cost of litigation, attorney fees and other expenses covered.

"This treatment of things that are religious in nature of sort as a pathogen that needs to be removed from the public sector needs to be stopped," Muise said. "We are in this for the long haul. If this is a case that needs to go all the way up the U.S. Supreme Court, we are certainly willing to do that."


The 9th Circus will side with the school so this WILL need to go to SCOTUS
No Free Speech in Canada

Free speech laws exist to protect unpopular speeech or speech that elites disapprove of. There is, however no concept of that in the Union of Soviet Socialist Canada. The reverse applies: You can be put in jail for unpopular speech or speech that elites disapprove of. A current case is that of Canadian Professor Terry Tremaine.

Tremaine makes no secret of his belief that races differ in important ways. He has, for instance, put on the net statements that describe blacks as: "prone to criminality, as violent, basically as equivalent to being mentally disabled". Those are greatly condemned statements in North America today but statistical evidence in support of all of them is readily to be found in the academic literature. But facts and truth don't matter in deciding what you can say about certain legally privileged groups in Canada, of course.

But for making such possibly true statements he has just been raided by the Canadian police and faces 5 years in jail. Details here. There appears to be no allegation that he has incited violence against anybody. He appears to be in the gun merely for expressing his opinion.
An Enemy of the Press

We read:

"Angelina Jolie's true colors came out Wednesday as she promoted a film about freedom of the press and then tried to censor all her interviews.

Jolie is touting press freedom these days, playing the widow of murdered Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in a new movie called "A Mighty Heart."

But Jolie turns out to be a mighty hypocrite when it comes to her own freedom of the press. Her lawyer required all journalists to sign a contract before talking to her, and Jolie instructed publicists at first to ban FOX News from the red carpet of her premiere.

Ironically, Wednesday night's premiere of the excellent Michael Winterbottom-directed film was meant to support an organization called Reporters Without Borders. Jolie, however, did everything she could to clamp down on the press and control it.


Just another Hollywood lamebrain with arrogance to match, I guess. People whose job it is to speak words written by others often seem to have difficulty in coming up with any intelligent words of their own.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Dittoheads Crush Leftists

We read:

"Radio station WIOD likely will remain Broward County's official channel for emergency information despite concerns it is also home to conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh.

County commissioners said they were deluged with complaints from throughout the country Wednesday after they questioned whether to cut their ties with the station because of their dislike for Limbaugh. By the end of the day, a majority of commissioners vowed to renew WIOD's agreement next week.

BBC: Must not Say Jerusalem is the Capital of Israel

I guess 3,000 years of history do not count to the BBC:

"The BBC apologized this week for referring to Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and promised not to repeat "the mistake," following a complaint by four British organizations.

Arab Media Watch, Muslim Public Affairs Committee, Friends of Al-Aksa and the Institute of Islamic Political Thought sent a joint complaint to the BBC after a presenter on its Football Focus program on March 24 mentioned that Jerusalem was Israel's capital and "historic soul."

In a letter to the complaining NGOs, Fraser Steel, head of editorial complaints at the BBC, said: "We of course accept that the international community does not recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and that the BBC should not describe it as such..... "Senior managers will try to ensure, as you suggest, that the mistake is not repeated.....

Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev said in response: "Jerusalem is Israel's capital. It is the right of every sovereign state to determine which city will be its capital. If this is not accepted by everyone today, I am confident it will be in the future."


And of course who cares that the Knesset (Israeli legislature) is in Jerusalem and that the Israeli seat of government is in Jerusalem?

Friday, June 15, 2007

Florida county may cancel deal with radio station because it airs Rush Limbaugh

We read:

"Rush Limbaugh has long been a thorn in the side of liberals, but now, because of him, some Democratic politicians don't even want to join with a local radio station to broadcast hurricane information.

Radio station WIOD, AM 610, has been the official channel for emergency information from Broward County government for the past year. The County Commission, all Democrats, balked at renewing the deal Tuesday, unable to stomach the station also being home to Limbaugh's talk show.....

Ken Charles, WIOD's director of AM programming, said Tuesday the station's talk show lineup has no relationship with its news coverage and that the county should focus on the benefits of teaming with the station. "It's a shame that people would let politics get in the way of saving lives in a hurricane," Charles said.


Leftists desperately NEED political censorship
Female Chauvinist Sows Lose Out

We read:

"The 19th floor of a new, $100 million hotel will not be restricted to female guests, after all. A spokesperson for the JW Marriott luxury hotel said Monday both men and women will be allowed to rent rooms on what originally was planned as a women-only floor in the 340-room hotel slated to open in September.

The floor's lounge that was to be only for women also will be open to male guests, said the spokesperson, who asked not to be identified because the plans have not been finalized.

Both the rooms and the lounge still will feature amenities designed to appeal particularly to female business travelers, such as chenille throw blankets, ionic hair dryers, jewelry holders and special bath products.


I personally think "women only" restrictions are fine -- as long as "men only" restrictions are fine too.
Another delusory whine about "gagging" from a Leftist

An editorial in "The Australian" again:

"Clive Hamilton calls himself an author but surely he's a comedian. How else to explain the following? Yesterday, New Matilda ran Hamilton's latest piece in which he said of The Australian: "No news organisation in Australia has done more to silence critics and independent voices." Now, here's the pay-off: this was run on the same day that The Australian published Hamilton's latest research paper. So while Hamilton was complaining that The Australian was silencing critics, The Australian was publishing Hamilton. Late last year, The Australian also published a report produced by the Australia Institute, of which he is executive director, on the subject of corporate pedophilia.....


Thursday, June 14, 2007

Live-Blogging of Sports Events Prohibited??

If you can see it on TV, why can't you talk about it?

"A Louisville Courier-Journal sports reporter had his media credential revoked and was ordered to leave the press box during an NCAA baseball super-regional because of what the NCAA alleged was a violation of its policies prohibiting live Internet updates from its championship events, the Courier-Journal reports....

Courier-Journal executive editor Bennie L. Ivory challenged the NCAA's action and said the newspaper would consider an official response, reports C-J writer Rick Bozich. "It's clearly a First Amendment issue," Ivory said. "This is part of the evolution of how we present the news to our readers. It's what we did during the Orange Bowl. It's what we did during the NCAA basketball tournament. It's what we do."...

"It's a real question that we're being deprived of our right to report within the First Amendment from a public facility," said Jon L. Fleischaker, the newspaper's attorney. "Once a player hits a home run, that's a fact. It's on TV. Everybody sees it. (The NCAA) can't copyright that fact. The blog wasn't a simulcast or a recreation of the game. It was an analysis."

Australian 'Beer boobs' advertisements are a boo-boo

We read:

"Beer ads starring a bikini-clad woman under the title "Hahn boobs" are under fire for offensive sexism.

The state's peak health advisory body, VicHealth, has written to the Advertising Standards Bureau asking for the ads to be shelved.

VicHealth boss Todd Harper said the treatment of women in the ads on television and the internet was appalling.

In the television advertisment promoting low carb beer Hahn Superdry, a young man turns a love heart drawn in the sand by a bikini-wearing woman into a pair of breasts before swigging from a beer bottle.

The internet site, Hahn Boobs, takes the campaign a step further.


It mainly seems to be feminists behind the objections. But feminists never have liked femininity.
Yet Again a Leftist Equates Disagreement with "Gagging"

It happens in Australia too. Leftists are such emotionally fragile creatures that they just cannot cope with contrary arguments -- understandable, given how shallow their own arguments are. The editorial from "The Australian" below is a tad sarcastic:

"There is no better way to start the day than with a good chuckle. Happily, there was Robert Manne in the letters pages of The Australian yesterday to give us one. Manne was all upset about Monday's editorial: "Reality bites the psychotic Left." He objected to the idea that the Left is obsessed with issues of the 1970s. He is also interested in Iraq, and climate change, he sniffed. That's quite right: in The Age in 2003, Manne wrote about Iraq, saying suicide bombers were "brave" and could not plausibly be described as "terrorists" because they were not "wantonly" taking the lives of innocent civilians. No? Not even those who later took the lives of children and UN staff? ....

Manne's most astonishing claim is that the Left has been silenced by the Howard Government. In the foreword to a new book, Silencing Dissent, he laments the "absence of powerful scrutiny" of the current government. Is Manne unaware of the relentless coverage of the AWB scandal, to use but one example? Could there have been any more written in the nation's media, in particular this newspaper, about the Tampa, or the children overboard affair? Does he know that 120,000 new blogs are started every day?

[sarcasm on] Manne says debate is "presently under threat", which would be why people were too terrified to march in their hundreds of thousands against the war in Iraq. You hardly ever hear a word against the Government's Work Choices legislation either, do you? David Marr can never get a word in. And, if the polls are any guide, Labor is really struggling to be heard. It is way ahead in most Australian states only because . . . well, who knows? Perhaps Robert Manne can tell us. Pity we won't be able to hear through the mouth gag he is forced to wear, both hands tied behind his back to prevent him from writing books, essays, columns and, now, letters to The Australian. [end sarcasm]


There is a more extended comment on this nonsense here

Nearly as amusing as the comments by Robert Manne referred to above are some comments from an Australian Leftist blogger who attracts a huge volume of comments to his posts -- the no-longer-anonymous Jeremy Sear. The Searing one also objects to the editorial that Manne objected to.

But the Searing one's main objection is that the editorial sets up a "straw man" version (false picture) of what Leftists are. So how does he deal with that? By setting up his own straw man version of what what conservatives say Leftists are! In good Leftist style he projects his own straw-man style of argument on to his opponents.

He claims that conservatives say Leftists are "baby-eating progress-denying decadent "elites" who hate "ordinary people" and love it when their homes burn down".

One can only pity such a weak mind.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

CBS News Anchor Bryant Gumbel Says He Was Right to Call Pro-Family Advocate a F***ing Idiot

We read:

"Yesterday, while filling-in for Regis Philbin on Live with Regis and Kelly, CBS News Early Show anchor Bryant Gumbel actually boasted about once calling conservative culture-critic Robert Knight "a f***ing idiot". Gumbel used the actual word at the end of a June 29, 2000 interview on CBS's The Early Show about whether active homosexuals should work as scoutmasters in the Boy Scouts. Mr. Knight, then with the Family Research Council, is now the director of the Media Research Center's Culture (MRC) and Media Institute.

After the first incident, the Media Research Center called on Mr. Gumbel to apologize. He remained silent. His employer, CBS, made the astounding claim that they did not know what Mr. Gumbel had said, although the incident was captured on videotape and live television.


Imus is out and Isaiah Washington is out for abusive speech so Gumbel will go too now -- or am I missing something?
No Right to Wave Flags?

Waving flags is a way of expressing loyalty that goes back into the mists of time. And there is no legal ban on waving ANY flag in the USA. You can see the Mexican flag being waved anytime there is one of the many demonstrations by Leftists in favour of illegal immigration. And during the Vietnam war, the same types waved the flag of Communist North Vietnam plenty of times.

So on what authority are soccer fans in Salt Lake City not allowed to wave the flags of Tibet and Taiwan? It happened recently at a match between a team from the People's Republic of China and Real Salt Lake.

It is something of a tradition in soccer for fans to try to spook the opposing team in various ways and my guess is that most of the flag wavers were just supporting their team rather than being very political but the Chinese said they would walk off the field if the flags were not taken down.

So what did RSL management do? Did they say: "Sorry. We have free speech in America. There's nothing we can do about it". No way. They sent goons among the fans to stop the flag waving, confiscated flags and booted one fan off the ground.

I understand that there are now legal moves against RSL management over their illegal trampling on the rights of their fans but with courts that believe in a "living" constitution, I would not be surprised if the First Amendment took another hit over this one. Details here and here.


A real-life example below (from Australia) of the SORT of firm but courteous reply that RSL officials COULD have given to the Chinese officials.

"Foreign Minister Alexander Downer has called on China to respect Australia's democratic system following warnings from Beijing over the Dalai Lama's visit. The exiled Tibetan monk has been warmly welcomed during his 11-day tour of Australia, meeting Federal Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd yesterday and Prime Minister John Howard later this week.

China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang yesterday said the Dalai Lama's Australian visit could harm bilateral ties.

Mr Downer said today that Australia was not ignoring China's warning but said it had already explained its position. "We've taken note of what they've had to say," he said on Sky News. "But I've explained to the Chinese on a number of occasions in relation to this issue that in this country, the Dalai Lama is regarded as a religious figure, a significant religious figure. "And it's just not a proposition for us to refuse to give someone like the Dalai Lama a visa to visit Australia.

"China has a very different political system from Australia but I've asked the Chinese to respect the way our culture and our political system works."


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Leftist Insensitivity must not be Criticized

Leftists are lightning-fast to perceive and condemn insensitivity in others. But what happens when it is the Leftist that is being insensitive?

In Australia, a Leftist university student under the guidance of Leftist professors made a "comedy" film that ridiculed disabled people. Insensitive? It would be hard to imagine anything more insensitive. So what happened?

Nothing. So two conservative professors at the university concerned wrote an article expressing their disgust. They began their article: "A time comes when you have to say: ``Enough!'', when you can no longer put up with the misanthropic and amoral trash produced under the rubric of postmodernist, post-structuralist thought.

In other words, they correctly identified Leftist amorality as the reason the disgusting film project had been approved. So what happened then? Did the university finally admit fault and apologize? Not at all. The two conservative professors have now lost their jobs for six months -- for daring to criticize Leftist trash. Details here and here

The head of the university concerned and the man behind the firings is Prof. Peter Coaldrake. You can ring him to tell him what you think of him. His cellphone is 61 418 642 375. His Office no. is 617 3864 8086 and his home no. is 617 3252 4388. The 61 in the preceding nos. is the country-code for Australia. To make an international call you may have to dial some other number first. Coaldrake's email is

I am not going to post anything else here today as I want to encourage readers to use their time to make themselves heard about this. The victimized professors are very upset by the way they have been treated so need all the help they can get.

Monday, June 11, 2007

"Gangs" Incorrect in Britain

We read:

"Youths who hang around committing crime and anti-social behaviour should not be described as gangs, the Youth Justice Board said today.

Using the term to describe groups of youths was "inappropriate" and could actually make their activities worse, a major study on gangs suggested.

Instead of the phrase "gang-related" the report used the term "group-related", although it declined to coin a new definition of what constituted a gang.

Colonel Baggio Replies

My post of June 6th about Army spokesman Baggio using the term "God's work" for what the troops are doing provoked an unusually large volume of comments on STACLU. For those who have missed it, Colonel Baggio himself has now also commented. I reproduce his reply below for the convenience of readers:

"Well, well, well.... I was resisting responding to this, but have succumbed to temptation and must now put a stake in it. Everybody on both the right and left sides of the fence needs to lighten up a tad here. Somewhere among what I allegedly said, what Pauline from AP noted, what the AP editors edited, and what some of you readers interpreted, the whole context of my comments has been lost and distorted.

Let me get the mea culpa out of the way - if I used the word God - I regret that I did, especially today in this world where folks hang on your every word, over-analyze it and in turn over-react. Although I'm no rookie to the Army (enlisted in the National Guard in Nov 1979; became a Regular Army Officer in April 1983) or to the media (11 years media relations experience), this is a testament that we can and should learn something every day; I've certainly been reminded to be more cautious.

That said, assuming maybe I did say "God" - it was only a figure of speech; I could have said "yeoman's work", "more than their fare share of the work", incredible work, freaking hard work - you get the point!!! I'm curious - from that passage, how does one assume I'm Christian? Didn't see Jesus or Christ in there - did ya? The last time I checked, the Jews, Christians, and Muslims worship the same God, plus many other faiths believe in a divine being.

My faith or lack of it is irrelevant. My so-called quotes came from an informal chat - albeit on the record - with AP's Pauline Jelinek in my office - I like Pauline and I don't fault her article, I'm sure she didn't intend for it to be extrapolated as a call for Christianity and probably most people didn't read it that way.

The focus of the interview was two-fold: 1. The number of troops who had deployed vs. haven't deployed and 2. An announcement by the Marine Commandant, saying how operationally focused they are and was the Army somewhat different - less operationally focused (translate: not as gung-ho).

I vehemently defended the lion's share of Soldiers, focusing on the Army's Warrior Ethos and that no matter where they work - theater or stateside - Soldiers contribute to the fight. I can relate, currently working at the Pentagon, but having spent 13 months and 17 days in Iraq (Jan 04 - Feb 05), plus multiple shorter war zone deployments in the Balkans. I made it clear that the Army was full of Warriors - every bit as tough as our sister service the Marines. I got "that" off my chest - it at least makes me feel better. I'd normally sign off with something like "God Bless Our Troops" but I don't want to offend anyone else - so I'll say "Keep our Troops in your thoughts and wishes."

COL Dan Baggio, U.S. Army.

So the good Colonel was using "God's" as a synonym for "good". I do something similar myself on occasions even though I am an atheist. If I encounter a clergyman who really impresses me with his Christlike nature, I will often refer to him as "A true man of God".

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Marriage as Hate-Speech Case now Filed with US Supreme Court

We read:

"The Pro-Family Law Center has challenged Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and United States District Court rulings finding the terms "marriage," "natural family," and "family values" to be hate-speech. The case involves the threat of termination of employment by the City of Oakland against two of its employees who used such words on an employee bulletin board. ....

In United States District Court, Case No. CV-03-03542-VRW, the California federal courts concluded that the terms "marriage," "natural family," and "family values" could be censored in a municipal workplace as hate-speech and in the interest of "administrative efficiency." (See here). Specifically, the City of Oakland banned the use of these terms on postings made to an open bulletin board provided to employees during the same-sex marriage debate in California during 2002 through 2003.


I mentioned this case previously on March 11th.
Dutch Leftists Muzzle Member who Wants to Help ex-Muslims

We read:

"Labour (PvdA) has been trying to muzzle a young PvdA member who is fighting for the rights and safety of Muslim apostates. An internal memo shows that the party fears the campaign of Ehsan Jami will cause it electoral damage and enrage Muslims.

Jami announced in May he was setting up a Committee for Ex-Muslims. The committee wants to break the taboo on lapsing from the Islamic faith. The 22 year old Jami, himself an apostate of Islam, says many Muslims do not dare to renounce Islam for fear of reprisals, including death.

Jami, who is a PvdA council member in the town of Leidschendam-Voorburg, will launch the committee officially in September with an international press conference. He says he has already had hundreds of e-mails from Muslims from throughout the world who support him. But his own PvdA is trying to muzzle him, it emerges from internal correspondence obtained by newspaper NRC Handelsblad.


Saturday, June 09, 2007

In Britain too, Whites must not Use Black Talk

Shades of Imus and his "nappy-headed hos":

"The Commission for Racial Equality commended Channel 4 yesterday for the swift removal of a Big Brother contestant who used a racially offensive term.

Emily Parr, 19, from Bristol, called Charley Uchea, a fellow housemate, a "nigger" during a misguided attempt to adopt urban "street" language.

Producers, under scrutiny after Ofcom's damning verdict over the Celebrity Big Brother racism row, removed Ms Parr within hours of the word being uttered, and said that such behaviour would not be tolerated. Tonight's eviction vote, for which Parr had been nominated, has been suspended.

Ms Parr, a middle-class drama student, was heard to say: "Are you pushing it out, you nigger?" to Ms Uchea while they were dancing in the living room. Ms Uchea and other housemates expressed shock. Ms Parr said that she had not intended to be offensive and said the term was exchanged widely during discussions with her black friends.

No Free Speech in Schools -- Even When it is Offered

A school essay writing task was to write a stream-of-consciousness essay: One where you write whatever comes into your head without it being criticized. High school student Allen Lee, an 18-year-old straight-A student, went to his creative writing class at Cary-Grove High School and did as he was told. But his essay mentioned guns and shooting.

So despite his having done just what he was told, the school called the police and had him arrested and charged with "disorderly conduct". His future is now on hold and may have been permanently damaged. His case has yet to come to court and will probably be thrown out. Given that he was NOT engaged in "disorderly conduct" and given the first amendment he can scarcely be convicted for uttering his thoughts when asked to do so.

But official perversion of the law has already caused Lee a lot of harm regardless of the eventual court verdict. Details here and some good comments here.
Deja Vu All Over Again

Everything I ever wrote for the old Tongue Tied site I have now reposted on this site and you can find it all via the archive listings in the right-hand column.

I have been feeling a little regretful that Scott's old posts have now winked out of existence however. I know that a lot of readers here miss his style of posts and I do too. But I entirely agree with his decision to put family first these days.

Anyway, before the old site went kaput, I did save some of the archives to disk -- archives from late 2005 only, I am afraid. About half of what is in the archives concerned was written by me and half by Scott.

With Scott's permission, I have now put those archives online again. See here. The posts are exactly as they originally went up except that I have stripped out the advertising etc. There is still a lot of good reading in them. If you ever forget what an insane world we live in, just log on there.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Why Jews Should Approve of Antisemitic Speech

Eugene Volokh, who is Jewish, a lawyer and a widely-read conservative blogger, argues that neither Jews nor anyone else should attempt to stop antisemitic speech and holocaust denial.

A major reason he puts forward for that, however, is interesting. He feels that such speech keeps Jew on their toes. It helps them to avoid a false sense of security and helps give Jews some feeling of unity -- something that Jews notoriously lack. There are heaps of anti-Israel Jews, for instance. Also see here.

Volokh's argument in that regard is in fact an old one. I look quickly at the history of the idea concerned as part of my article here. Some Jewish writers even feel that Jews NEED their persecutors -- that it is only persecution that has held Jews together as a group for so many years

I myself think that is a bit extreme but the idea that victims and victimizers do in some cases and in some senses collude is not an unusual one. It is one foundation of the study known as "victimology".

Note that Volokh is NOT condoning actual persecution of Jews -- just antisemitic speech. I am rather pleased that someone is able to make that distinction. Leftists notoriously do not. To them anything from the words "you people" (as Ross Perot found out) to a lynching is all the same -- all "racism"
Leftist Arrested for Asking a Question?

We read:

"Freelance reporter Matt Lepacek, reporting for, was arrested for asking a question to one of Giuliani's staff members in a press conference. The press secretary identified the New York based reporter as having previously asked Giuliani about his prior knowledge of WTC building collapses and ordered New Hampshire state police to arrest him.


It sounds very bad but may be a hoax or a misreport of some sort. It does not seem to have been reported by any mainstream media -- and you would think they would be all over it. See also here.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Hooray! Long Live the Off Switch and the Channel Changer

We read:

"If President Bush and Vice President Cheney can blurt out vulgar language, then the government cannot punish broadcast television stations for broadcasting the same words in similarly fleeting contexts.

That, in essence, was the decision on Monday, when a federal appeals panel struck down the government policy that allows stations and networks to be fined if they broadcast shows containing obscene language.

Although the case was primarily concerned with what is known as "fleeting expletives," or blurted obscenities, on television, both network executives and top officials at the Federal Communications Commission said the opinion could gut the ability of the commission to regulate any speech on television or radio.


If there really is a significant market for very prim TV, some channel will see an opportunity in that and provide it. There is no reasonable justification for a minority of easily shockable people to impose their preferences on the rest of the country. Let the market decide what is available.
Greenie Attack on Parliamentary Prayer in New Zealand

In the national parliaments of both Australia and New Zealand, it is customary to begin parliamentary sessions with a Christian prayer. Canberra in the Australian Capital Territory (referred to below) is Australia's equivalent of Washington, D.C.

"Adopting Canberra's government statement to replace the prayer at the start of Parliament sittings may keep Christian and secular people happy, Green MP Keith Locke says.

Mr Locke said the statement retained the option to pray but allowed non-believers and adherents of different faiths the option of reflection.

Today Prime Minister Helen Clark distanced herself and the Labour Party from an initiative to review the use of the Christian prayer that starts each sitting.

Last month Speaker Margaret Wilson wrote to MPs asking if they thought the prayer should be scrapped or altered -- perhaps removing the reference to Jesus Christ.

Mr Locke said the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) parliament changed its prayer to a statement in 1995. "In the Australia Capital Territory they have a little statement at the beginning of each session; 'members, at the beginning of this sitting of the assembly I would ask members to stand in silence and prayer or reflect on our responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territories'."


The Greenies are represented in Parliament in both Australia and New Zealand and are far to the Left of any other party. The above brainstorm was rejected by both major New Zealand parties.
Heh! This Should Fire up the ACLU

Whether the ACLU likes it or not, America has a largely Christian army so the following comment from an Army spokesman about troops that have not been deployed to Iraq was perfectly normal:

"There are a lot of folks doing God's work right here stateside that are invaluable to the people overseas," said Col. Daniel Baggio, an Army spokesman. "The spirit of the Army is really that folks want to do their part ... in any way they can. ... They go where they're told to go."


Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Chinese Restaurant Must not Mention "Chinamen"

More naughtiness in Tucson:

"A Chinese takeout restaurant in the Foothills has removed racially insensitive language from its menu, Web site and advertising fliers after community groups denounced it as racist and the parent company of the firm that helped create the ads ordered them pulled.

Mike Reynolds, owner of Eggrolls, Etc., apologized in a telephone interview Monday for using the word "Chinamen" in his ads, saying he was initially unaware that it was widely considered a derogatory term.

Reynolds said he still doesn't think his menu, on the whole, could be construed as "intended to hurt or damage anyone," but apologized for any "misunderstanding" created by the jokes on his menu, which included a parody of the inability of immigrant Chinese to pronounce words containing the letter "r."

Evil judge

We read:

"The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote this Thursday on the nomination of former Mississippi Court of Appeals judge Leslie Southwick to a seat on the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Ralph G. Neas, president of People For the American Way, cited Southwick's troubling record on the rights of African Americans, gays and lesbians, and workers, and today urged Democratic and Republican Senators to come out forcefully against the nomination prior to the vote. He made the following statement:

"Leslie Southwick upheld the reinstatement with back pay of a white worker after she had been fired for using the single most offensive racial epithet, calling a black colleague a `good ole nigger.'


So a judge is not allowed to find that an unmalicious comment was unmalicious? Aren't we lucky that Leftist activists know more about judging than judges do?

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Batty Britain: Tit okay, but c*ck is out

We read:

"The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds has banned the word for male birds from its website, drawing accusations of political correctness gone mad. Visitors to the website found the word "c*ck" had been replaced by asterisks, while the species, tit, suffered no such indignity.

Forum user John D, of Yorkshire, told The Sun: "As bird lovers will know, a Parus Major is a great tit and while cocks do not get past the forum censor, tits do not cause offence. I've heard of PC but that is taking things too far."

A worker claimed the word had been replaced because of software filters but an RSPB spokesman said it preferred to describe birds as either male or female.

Defamation is not Free Speech

There will always be debate about limits on free speech but I would think it is only extreme libertarians who would seriously argue that defamation (untrue derogatory statement about an individual) should be protected as free speech.

It is my view that the truth of a statement should always be an adequate defence against any attack on it but the converse of that is that untrue statements may deserve punishment if they are harmful.

This is all brought to the fore by the case of AutoAdmit -- a discussion board for law students -- primarily ones at Ivy League law scools, it seems. Many statements appearing on the site about particular individuals are highly defamatory (i.e. derogatory and untrue) and have caused great harm to the careers of some female law students particularly.

As I noted on March 21, however, it has in some unfathomable way been held that nothing on the site can be sanctioned in any way because of the free speech protections of the First Amendment.

That sounds to me like nothing so much as lawyers and law students looking after one-another but it seems that there has at last been at least one exception to that. One of the people running the site has lost his job over it. We read:

"In May, Wall Street Journal Law Blog writer Amir Efrati reported that the other AutoAdmit principal had been refused continued employment at a prestigious law firm. The attorney who refused further employment wrote, “We expect any lawyer affiliated with our firm, when presented with the kind of language exhibited on the message board, to reject it and to disavow any affiliation with it. You, instead, facilitated the expression and publication of such language… [and your resignation from the site was] too late to ameliorate our concerns.”



Monday, June 04, 2007

Race of Defendant must not be Mentioned in Massachusetts Jury Room

If someone is bl*ck, you must not mention it. A Massachusetts jury convicted a bl*ck man of murdering a white woman but there is now a move afoot to have the verdict appealed because some jury members were "racist". What made them racists? Apparently, during jury deliberations, one juror referred to the defendant as "an intimidating big bl*ck guy" and another referred to him as ""200-pound bl*ck guy".

So mentioning the obvious is now racist in Massachusetts. Why am I not surprised?

Details here
Must not Mention Monkeys When Talking about a Black

From Florida:

"Local talk-radio host Big John is in trouble with a civil-rights group for comparing a black Daytona Beach commissioner to a monkey. The comment was broadcast Friday, when the former Volusia County Council member told 1380 AM (WELE) listeners why he doesn't think Commissioner Dwayne Taylor should be elected mayor. "The higher the monkey climbs, the better you can see its . . ., " John said. "And we'd really see Dwayne's butt if he got to be mayor."

Not only was John's remark offensive, Taylor said Wednesday, but it was racist..... John said he will not apologize. But Doug Wilhite, the station's president, did.

"Big John learned this German proverb twenty years ago. He has used it repeatedly about people of all races whom he does not like," Wilhite said in a statement. "We apologize to members of the black community who are offended by misunderstanding this to be a racist remark."

A radio spokeswoman said the station has no plans to fire John.


I guess the radio host knew what he was doing but just refused to bow down to political correctness.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Complaint filed with IRS after Tampa televangelist compares Romney to Satan

We read:

"Florida evangelist Bill Keller says he was making a spiritual -- not political -- statement when he warned the 2.4 million subscribers to his Internet prayer ministry that ``if you vote for Mitt Romney, you are voting for Satan!''

But the Washington-based advocacy group Americans United for Separation of Church and State says the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) should revoke the 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status of Bill Keller Ministries, nonetheless.


I would have thought that all religions had the right to say that they had the truth and that unbelievers were wrong or would miss the boat in some way. The pastor was clearly condemning Romney only because he is a Mormon.
Leftists Think Coercion is Free Speech

Leftist activists at UC Santa Cruz blockaded the UC university regents in a lecture hall last October and the police had to use force to clear a way through the crowd. One of the leaders of the obstructive group was habitual protest leader Alette Kendrick -- whom the police arrested for her obstructive behavior.

UCSC has now suspended her from the university for three years and there are all sorts of claims on the net that her "free speech" was violated thereby. In Leftist circles acting like a thug is free speech apparently.

Background here. A sample of the false "free speech" claims here

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Hypocritical Punishment for Criticizing Bad Teacher

We read:

"A federal judge has upheld the suspension of a Seattle-area student involving the production and YouTube posting of a video mocking a teacher. U.S. District Judge Marsha J. Pechman denied on May 22 Kentridge High School senior Gregory Requa's request for a temporary restraining order that would end the 40-day suspension, rejecting Requa's argument that the punishment violated his First Amendment rights.....

The video, dubbed "Mongzilla," questions teacher Joyce Mong's hygiene and classroom clutter. Shot when students secured a hidden video camera in Mong's English classroom, it includes students dancing and mocking Mong as her back is turned and features commentary on how Mong talks to students.....

However, Kent School District said that the punishment was for the classroom disruption that occurred in the production of the video, not for his criticism. According to spokeswoman Becky Hanks, "The video depicted the conduct that was punished."


If it was the behavior depicted in the video that was being punished, why was it not punished BEFORE the video came to light? Clearly, it was the video that was being punished.

Because they are so unionized, there is very little anyone can do about ineffective teachers and even student protests are now being censored and punished.
Illinois: A Small Victory for Abortion Critics

We read:

"A federal judge has struck down a Granite City ordinance limiting the types of signs that can be used by protesters, siding with a couple who insist they have the right to display large, graphic anti-abortion posters.

U.S. District Judge William Stiehl last week issued a partial summary judgment sought by Daniel and Angela Michael, declaring unconstitutional the St. Louis suburb's 16-month-old ordinance that said hand-held signs within 25 feet of its parade routes could be no larger than a letter-sized piece of paper.

The Michaels' lawsuit claimed the ordinance, enacted in January 2006, infringed on their rights to free speech, free exercise of religion and their participation in the political process.


Friday, June 01, 2007

"White supremacist" to call for equal treatment of blacks and whites?

I guess Martin Luther King must have been a white supremacist at that rate:

"Close to 300 Knoxville police officers, Knox County sheriff's deputies, and Tennessee Highway Patrol troopers kept close watch over a white supremacist rally Saturday in downtown Knoxville.

The 30 or so protestors came from across the United States to Knoxville to argue that national and local media are not giving enough attention to black-on-white crimes. The issue they are thrusting to the center of their message is the double murder of Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom.


I have myself commented (scroll down) about the way the atrocious crime concerned has been ignored by the major media -- in contrast to the way the non-crime of the Duke lacrosse players was splashed nationwide.

But I too have been labelled a "white supremacist" for opposing racial preferences (i.e. "affirmative action") so I guess that what we see above is just the usual Leftist substitution of abuse for rational argument.

George Orwell portrayed Leftists as using words to mean the opposite of what they really described and we certainly see a lot of that today.

Ace has some thoughtful comments on the media behavior in the matter.
The real hate speech

We read:

"Just who are the haters? Here are some of the blog postings from homosexual activists following the death of one of the godliest men I have ever met, Dr. Jerry Falwell:

"What an absolutely putrid little excrescence of vomit he was."

"R.I.P., and after watching Falwell I know know (sic) why the Romans threw the Christians to the lions."

"Oh, thank non-god. One down, 28 percent to go."

"I'd pee right on his corpse if I could."

"Dance first, then pi-- ."

"I'm saving the real party for Jesse Helms's exit. I'll be dancing that day."

No surprise - this is exactly how homosexual activists treated Rev. Falwell when he was alive. Homosexuals more than hated Jerry Falwell, whom they attacked, maligned, ridiculed and threatened...


Leftist attacks on disapproval of homosexuality are all projection. They see in others the hate that burns inside themselves.