Friday, June 29, 2018

Australian libertarian senator advises Green senator to 'stop shagging men' during women's safety debate

A classic case of the Green/Left distorting what their opponents say. Donald Trump gets it daily

Greens senator Sarah Hanson-Young has accused senator David Leyonhjelm of telling her to “stop shagging men” during a debate about women and violence, and then swearing at her when she confronted him.

Senator Hanson-Young told parliament the Liberal Democrats senator made the remark on the floor of the upper house during a division on a motion about arming women with tasers to combat violence.

She said Leyonhjelm refused to apologise for the comments, which she says are offensive and sexist.

Later Leyonhjelm confirmed his words but denied he shouting them out.  He said he was responding to Senator Hanson-Young’s interjection in the debate, which he claimed was “along the lines of all men being rapists”.

“I responded by suggesting that if this was the case she should stop shagging men. I did not yell at her,” Leyonhjelm said.

“Following the division, Senator Hanson-Young approached me and called me a creep. I told her to f*** off.”

He said if the Greens senator took offence, it was an issue for her.

“I am prepared to rephrase my comments. I strongly urge Senator Hanson-Young to continue shagging men as she pleases,” Senator Leyonhjelm said.


'Sick of the man-hating PC brigade': Customers vow to stop shopping at Australia's Peter Alexander after the sleepwear company pulls 'boys will be boys' jumper from its shelves - because ONE mum claimed it was sexist

Peter Alexander's decision to stop selling a jumper after one customer complained has prompted a widespread backlash by customers of the iconic Australian brand.

The sleepwear company removed the controversial 'boys will be boys' jumper from its catalogue on Wednesday, one week after a mother said its message was 'sexist' and promoted 'toxic masculinity'.

Customers have since expressed their anger and disappointment at the decision to stop selling the top on the company's Facebook page - with some vowing to stop buying the brand completely.

'My family have over the years purchased many pyjamas from your business. Unfortunately, with your company bowing to the PC brigade and removing the 'boys will be boys' jumper, we will no longer be purchasing from your company. We are so sick of the Man hating PC brigade, but even more feed (sic) up with businesses that placate these groups. Thank you,' one man wrote.

'This is disappointing. If people want to be offended by everything fine, just don't buy it. I don't understand the offence or the response. Instead of removing it, why not introduce a top 'girls will be girls,' another customer suggested.

The top was removed after Melbourne woman Bridie Harris complained the top was sexist.

'Boy won't be boys. Boys will be held accountable for their actions. I hate to see an Australian store, who makes such great pjs, put such a sexist statement on a t-shirt intended for young boys. Excusing boys of their behaviour is not a step in the right direction. It's 2018,' she wrote on the business' Facebook page.

Known as the 'Pyjama King', Peter Alexander is famous for the unique themes he uses to design his pyjamas. His inspiration comes from his travels around the world such as Paris, New York, and African Safaris.

Ms Harris, who has a two-year-old daughter, told The Sydney Morning Herald she was glad the jumper was no longer being sold, as she did not want her little girl 'to think if someone pushes her on the playground it's just 'boys will be boys'.' 

'I want her to stand up and tell someone and be able to feel safe, playing in playground or walking home at night as an adult,' Ms Harris said.

Ms Harris' concerns were followed up by another complaint on the day the jumper was withdrawn from sale. 

A domestic violence victim, Jenny, told 3AW the decision to axe the jumper was 'ridiculous'.  'It has to stop. This has gone too far. There's so many rules that nobody can be themselves any more,' Jenny said.


Thursday, June 28, 2018

Climate skeptic prof suffers hate speech, bias and intolerance at University of Delaware

A recent article by the editor-in-chief of the school’s student newspaper proclaimed “Green Dragon slayer for hire, in a geography department near you: To members of the Cornwall Alliance, environmentalists are satanic ‘Green Dragons,’ sent from the bowels of hell to threaten world order and harm the needy.”

Caleb Owens’ article links tenured UDel geography and climatology professor David Legates and his Christian faith to “far-right American evangelicals,” fossil fuel funding and the “anti-environmentalist” Cornwall Alliance. Legates is pilloried as a “listed speaker and trusted affiliate” of the Alliance.

The article relies heavily on Iliff School of Theology sociology professor Antony Alumkal, whose book Paranoid Science Owens asserts “charts the long and complicated relationship between science and the American Christian evangelical movement, examining the intra-religious tensions that have accompanied various strands of science denial, including the intelligent design and anti-environmental movements.”

Expanding on this, Owens falsely claims “far-right American evangelicals have been responsible for some of the most radical opposition to scientific positions regarding topics such as climate change and evolution, working in close tandem with secular free-market idealogues.” [sic]

Underscoring his bias and intolerance, a cartoon accompanying the article depicts a cute, frightened green dragon carrying a “recycle” placard being attacked by members of a Christian mob dressed in nineteenth century garb straight out of a Frankenstein movie, and brandishing a cross, torch and pitchfork.

In his imagined coup de grace, Owens claims that “groups like” Cornwall have received “indirect” funding from fossil fuel companies, such as Exxon Mobil – and “government officials and climate activist groups have questioned Legates’ funding and motivations, possibly traceable to fossil fuel industries.”

The “Green Dragon” DVD series prompted the title for the Owens article, and some of its misguided criticisms. In his own Dragon lecture, Legates says segments of the scientific community improperly engage in “post-normal science,” altering or distorting facts to advance political goals. Owens suggests that this is not happening and claims Legates is in denial about human-caused climate change.

However, even Dr. Mike Hulme, a former member of the IPCC and University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (and an evangelical Christian), said post-normal science focuses on “the process of science – who gets funded, who evaluates quality, who has the ear of policy makers” – rather than on what should be an honest, transparent, evidence-based scientific method. Hulme called the IPCC “a classic example.”

Moreover, like many other scientists, Legates has explicitly affirmed that climate change is frequent and recurring, and people play a role, especially at local levels but even on global scales. What he denies is that carbon dioxide emissions are the primary driver and manmade change is likely to become disastrous.

Finally, as to funding, Legates and Beisner have told me neither they nor Cornwall ever received “one dime” from any fossil fuel company. Owens’ slick, crafty suggestions that they did could have meant he has a job waiting for him at MSNBC – except that the claims are libelous, especially in the context of the headline claim that Legates is “for hire” by Cornwall or an oil company.

The University of Delaware cannot let this biased, deceitful, defamatory hate speech go unchallenged – especially in an official campus newspaper, housed in a UDel building, funded by Delaware taxpayers.


Getty Images delete World Cup's 'sexiest fans' gallery after backlash

Getty Images deleted a hottest 2018 World Cup fans gallery on social media on Tuesday following backlash from fans and feminist organizations.

Getty replaced the photos with this message on their website: 'Earlier, we published a piece, "World Cup 2018: The Sexiest Fans", that did not meet our editorial standards.

'We regret the error and have removed the piece. There are many interesting stories to tell about the World Cup and we acknowledge this was not one of them.'

According to The Guardian, a spokesperson for the company confirmed Getty had not reached out to the women photographed for permission to share their pictures in such a manner. They told the outlet an internal investigation would be conducted.

'Getty Images holds a deep belief in the power of visuals to incite change and shift attitudes and we have done, and will continue to do, much work to promote and create a more evolved and positive depiction of women,' the spokesperson added.

The collection of images, initially posted with the sub-heading, 'Talk about a knock-out round...', featured photos of female football fans exclusively. The exclusion of male fans prompted many to decry the post as sexist.


Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Airbnb PR chief shares tone-deaf post about immigration crisis

Woman meant one thing but people took her the opposite way. Sometimes you can't win

THE head of PR at Airbnb has shocked industry insiders with a tone-deaf post about migrant children separated from their parents at the US border.

The new director of PR at Airbnb made a communications blunder of global proportions amid the child separation crisis at the US border, theNew York Post reports.

Kim Kingsley stunned fellow PR pros by posting a picture of herself and fellow staffers dancing on a San Francisco pier with the caption, “ … that night I fell in love with new colleagues while children 2,000 miles away were being detained in cages. #whatyoudomatters #speakup #cantignorethis.”

We’re told industry insiders shared the post between themselves, with one telling Page Six, “My jaw dropped.”

A source close to Ms Kingsley — who has been posting criticism of the now-revoked policy online — pointed out that Airbnb was among the first corporations to publicly oppose it, and said that Ms Kingsley was just “proud to be working at a company that shares her values.”

In a statement, Ms Kingsley told us, “My point is the exact opposite of what you suggest.”

She continued, “Even as we experience moments with family and friends, we cannot forget these children and my hashtags make that very clear. What you do matters. Speak up. We can’t ignore this. Look at anything I’ve shared over the last few weeks and you will know my feelings on this issue.”


Australia: Viewers express fury over TV program's 'insensitive' panel discussion comparing IVF to 'gambling addiction'

It's not a bad comparison in that both things can easily become an obsession, but comparing anything to gambling suggests derogatory intent.  I am myself an IVF father but  just thought that the segment made a point rather vividly.

Channel Seven viewers have expressed anger and disappointment over a panel discussion on Weekend Sunrise that compared IVF to 'gambling addiction'.

The offending segment, which aired on Sunday, drew criticism on Facebook due to the perceived 'insensitive' handling of a serious topic.

'Thousands' of would-be parents struggling with fertility issues were left hurt and insulted by statements made during the show, including the suggestion that people wanting a family 'need to start younger'.

The panel discussion was led by Weekend Sunrise hosts Basil Zempilas and Monique Wright and also featured journalist Melissa Hoyer and newsreader Ron Wilson.

Quoting an article in The Daily Telegraph about a couple that had been unsuccessful in their attempt to have a child after 12 rounds of fertility treatment, Basil introduced the discussion with a warning about 'women getting hooked on IVF in the same way gamblers get addicted to the pokies'.


Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Top communications chief at Netflix has been fired amid racial slur scandal

He was apparently talking ABOUT the word, not USING it!  But that was apparently still too much.  He was apparently not allowed to mention what he was discussing!

NETFLIX has fired its chief communications officer after he made “insensitive remarks” in a meeting with colleagues, reportedly using the N-word multiple times.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, in a memo sent out to staff, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said they were letting go of Jonathan Friedland because “his descriptive use of the N-word on at least two occasions at work showed unacceptably low racial awareness and sensitivity.”

Friedland was the top communications spokesman for the streaming service for six years, joining as vice president global corporate communications after having previously been an executive for Disney.

Sources revealed to The Hollywood Reporter that the firing followed Netflix staff members reporting Friedman for having said the N-word during a meeting of public relations staff about sensitive words. The company had hoped that the initial incidentwould be just “an awful anomaly”, however, he then repeated the word again months later in another meeting when addressing the original incident.

Hastings wrote in the internal memo to staff, “We had hoped this was an awful anomaly never to be repeated.

“Three months later he spoke to a meeting of our Black Employees @Netflix group and did not bring it up, which was understood by many in the meeting to mean he didn’t care and didn’t accept accountability for his words.”

In a statement on Twitter, Friedland confirmed his departure, saying that he felt “awful” for what he had done. “Leaders have to be beyond reproach in the example we set,” he said, “and unfortunately I fell short of that standard when I was insensitive in speaking to my team about words that offend in comedy.


Sports announcer who said ‘cotton-picking mind’ is out of his job

Wiktionary says the term is just a form of emphasis.  I don't use the term myself but I have heard it used -- always without racial intent.  I think the episode below is just Left-inspired vindictiveness. It is a nasty game to see whom you can catch and hurt

Oklahoma City Thunder play-by-play announcer Brian Davis was calling a fairly meaningless game between the Thunder and the Memphis Grizzlies in the regular season finale. Despite the game not meaning a ton in the grand scheme of things, Thunder star Russell Westbrook was playing with his typical maniacal competitiveness.

“Russell Westbrook is out of his cotton-picking mind!” Davis exclaimed during the course of the game.

Unsurprisingly, Davis sparked an internet firestorm with his use of the phrase “cotton-picking mind.”

There were those who felt the phrase is linked to slavery, and thus a racist term. There were others who felt that the phrase is just an old jab at all farmers, regardless of race.

And, of course, there were those who felt that it’s nothing more than an unassuming figure of speech that has no literal significance.

The merits of the phrase are obviously up for debate, but it was enough for Davis to be suspended for the Thunder’s first playoff game.

For his part, Davis seemed genuinely contrite and offered his deepest apologies

According to NewsOK, the Thunder brass informed Davis that his contract would not be renewed.


Monday, June 25, 2018

Washed up actress calls border patrol terrorists

She should be prosecuted for hate speech.  It's a lot more hateful than the words conservatives are often penalized for

The Vice President of US Border Patrol Council has criticized actress-turned-gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon for calling the Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) agency a 'terrorist organization'.

Speaking on Fox New's The Story Friday, Art del Cueto called the former Sex and the City star's branding of ICE 'disgusting' and told her to 'go back to history class'. 

'They're defending our county, that's what they're doing,' Del Cueto said. 'And to be portrayed as Nazis or to be's disgusting. They need to go back to history class.'

This comes after Nixon made a powerful speech a New York City church Thursday and said: 'ICE has strayed so far away from its mission. It is supposed to be here to keep Americans safe but what it has turned into, frankly, is a terrorist organization of its own that is terrorizing people who are coming to this country.'

She later doubled down on her remarks in a tweet, calling for the agency to be abolished and its branded President Trump an 'egomaniacal leader.'

Nixon made the comments while at St. Paul and St. Andrew United Methodist Church, in New York City, where an undocumented Guatemalan immigrant Debora Vasquez-Barrios, a mother of two US-born kids, is taking shelter after being threatened with deportation.


Scandals Sanitized With Linguistic Trickery

Throughout Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s massive report on the Hillary Clinton email investigation are lots of strange things. One of the weirdest is the extent to which the FBI went to make up words and phrases to disguise reality.

An early draft of the 2016 FBI report on the email scandal was reportedly subjected to linguistic surgery to exonerate the former secretary of state, who at the time was the Democratic nominee for president. Clinton was originally found to be “grossly negligent” in using an illegal email server. That legalistic phrase is used by prosecutors to indict for violation of laws governing the wrongful transmission of confidential government documents.

Yet the very thought of a likely President Clinton in court so worried the chief investigator, FBI Director James Comey, that he watered down “grossly negligent” to the mere “extremely careless.”

FBI investigators also had concluded that it was “reasonably likely” foreign nations had read Clinton’s unsecured emails. Comey intervened to mask such a likelihood by substituting the more neutral word “possible.”

Former President Barack Obama was found to have improperly communicated with Clinton over her illegal server while she was in a foreign country. Obama had denied that fact by falsely claiming that he never knew of her server until much later, after it was publicized.

The FBI hierarchy under Comey tried to hide the embarrassing details of Obama’s conduct. As a result, the FBI deleted Obama’s name from its report. In its place, the FBI inserted the laughable “another senior government official” — as if the president of the United States was just another Washington grandee who had improperly communicated on an illicit email server.

According to Comey’s congressional testimony, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch ordered him not to use the supposedly incriminating noun “investigation” in connection with his investigation of the Clinton emails. Instead, she instructed Comey to use the benign-sounding “matter.”

One of the oddest mysteries of the IG report is the FBI’s delay in addressing the fact that disgraced former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner had a number of Clinton’s private emails on his unsecured laptop. They were all forwarded to him by his wife, Huma Abedin, an aide to Clinton. Their Washington-insider marriage had been widely publicized. Yet Comey, the nation’s premier public investigator, claimed he had no idea that Weiner and Abedin were married. Comey would have the inspector general believe that Abedin had forwarded numerous emails from Clinton, some of them classified, to a mere acquaintance.

Stranger still, Comey asserted his ignorance of the Weiner-Abedin marriage in an Orwellian manner: “I don’t know that I knew that [Weiner] was married to Huma Abedin at the time.” Translated, that means Comey claimed that he was not sure at one point that he was sure at another point that Weiner was married to Abedin, at least at the time when the emails came to his attention. Therefore, he did not act as he should have.

What were the common themes in the FBI’s linguistic distortions?

Two realities: One, the FBI made sure that Obama, the boss of most of the wayward FBI and DOJ officials, was not to be entangled in any scandal.

Two, seemingly everyone at the Department of Justice and FBI assumed Hillary Clinton was going to be president. They were sure Donald Trump was headed for a humiliating and well-deserved defeat. Therefore, in the heat of the 2016 campaign, the FBI and DOJ did what they could to ingratiate themselves with those they expected to be in power during a likely eight-year Clinton presidency.

The inspector general’s report on the Clinton email covers just one scandal. Presumably, the IG and other investigators will issue reports on a number of other ongoing scandals that involved the 2016 campaign.

How did government officials, by hiding information about the so-called Steele dossier, mislead the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to get warrants to spy on U.S. citizens associated with the Trump campaign?

How was it decided that the Clinton campaign would pay Christopher Steele for gathering dirt on the Trump campaign, and how did the information from the dossier get to intelligence agencies?

How was an FBI informant inserted into the Trump campaign?

How were names of U.S. citizens unmasked by Obama administration officials and leaked to the press?

If the IG report on the Clinton email scandal is any guide to these upcoming investigations, expect widespread abuse of the English language to warp reality.

The media is using the antiseptic “informant” in place of the cruder but more accurate “spy” or “mole.”

The off-putting but accurate “wiretapping” has become the more professional “surveillance.”

The sanitized “improper” always sounds cleaner than the more accurate “illegal.”

In sum, “2016” could make a logical sequel to 1984.


Sunday, June 24, 2018

Supreme Court to Minnesota: First Amendment Rights Don't End at the Polling Booth

With just two weeks to go until the end of its term, the Supreme Court ruled 7-2 in Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky that Minnesota’s ban on so-called “political” apparel at the polls on Election Day violates the First Amendment.

With Thursday’s decision, the High Court has restored the ability of voters in Minnesota to express their views on everything from the Second Amendment to the #MeToo movement.

Minnesota had a very restrictive law that not only prohibited active campaigning in polling places but also barred voters from wearing badges, buttons, and other items with a “political” message. But the state’s definition of what it considered to be “political” was so broad that even a T-shirt that simply said “Vote!” could be prohibited.

The Court was right to invalidate Minnesota’s law, which prevented Andrew Cilek, the executive director of the Minnesota Voters Alliance, from wearing his “Don’t Tread on Me” T-shirt and a “Please I.D. Me” button to the polls on Election Day.

Minnesota said that if you showed up at a polling place wearing a T-shirt with the historic and famous Gadsden flag on it — the first flag of the Continental Marines — you could get thrown out.

Apparently, wearing a T-shirt with a picture of a coiled rattlesnake and the phrase “Don’t Tread on Me” is a “political” message that must be banned.

While states have legitimate interests in ensuring the integrity of their elections and preventing intimidation, coercion, and other harassment of voters at the polls, they don’t have a legitimate interest in stamping out speech on clothing because it might “trigger” people at the polls.

The ability to speak your mind and express yourself is a foundational right in American society, and that should extend to the polls on Election Day. Some limits to prevent harassment, intimidation, and the like are reasonable, but the Minnesota law was the exact opposite of reasonable.


UK: Must not joke about black criminality

Alan Sugar has spent the past 24 hours in the social media equivalent of that depressing greasy spoon to which losing Apprentice teams are banished. The baron of boardroom banter provoked uproar by tweeting a picture of the Senegal World Cup team photoshopped so that they appeared to be selling counterfeit goods.

“I recognise some of these guys from the beach in Marbella. Multitasking, resourceful chaps,” jested The Apprentice host, seemingly struggling to hold his sides in, so free-flowing was the mirth. 

The tweet was widely condemned as racist.


Friday, June 22, 2018

Elle Macpherson, 54, comes under fire from TV viewers for encouraging women to skip meals to lose weight and get 'beach body ready'

Women have been encouraged to skip meals in order to get 'beach body ready' in a This Morning segment branded 'ridiculous' by viewers.

Supermodel Elle Macpherson, 54, presented the guide on the ITV show on Wednesday, during which she revealed her tips for losing weight to look better in swimwear.

One of the mother-of-two's tricks was to swap her dinner for a protein shake and to remove 'anything white' from her diet.

However, viewers criticised the show for implying that women needed to lose weight to look good on the beach, with one saying: 'Shame on you!'

Despite being one of the world's most famous supermodels, Elle said she was starting to worry about staying in shape.

She explained: 'Summer's coming up and I too am getting ready for a summer body. I know it sounds really corny but we all think about that.'

Viewers took to Twitter to slam the advice, saying beach bodies don't have to be a certain weight or clothes size.

One tweeted: 'SORRY, but maybe you should tell people that they don't need to change their body just because it's summer?! What a ridiculous section.'


No witches, no death and no religion: Author says children's books are being dumbed down because politically correct parents are REFUSING to read their kids traditional fairy tales

Children's book publishers are losing the plot with the growing presence of political correctness, an Australian award winning author has warned.

Former Children's Book Council of Australia award winner Elizabeth Fensham is the second author this week to raise concerns about children's books being sanitised and dumbed down.

The Sydney-born author told The Daily Telegraph she believes language in children's books is being oversimplified, which could impact on young readers. 'If it was going to be absolutely terrifying, I can see editors saying 'no, don't do that,' Ms Fensham told the publication.

'We need beautifully written books for kids and we shouldn't be frightened to use complex words.'

Internationally best-selling British author Geraldine McCaughrean sparked the debate earlier this week when she criticised publishers for vetoing complex language in children's books in her acceptance speech after winning the Carnegie Medal, the UK's oldest children's book award.

'We master words by meeting them, not by avoiding them,' Ms McCaughrean said after receiving the children's literature award.  

'With a book that's going to be sold into schools you get a list of things that are unacceptable – no witches, no demons, no alcohol, no death, no religion. It really does cut down what you can write about.'

Ms McCaughrean, who has written more than 160 books, said there was now a range of topics that are no longer considered acceptable for young readers.

'It's extraordinary because in pre-school you can read fairytales in their original form and some of them are really scary and dark. 'But you go to junior school and all of a sudden the fairy tales that you read in school have been sanitised and cleaned up.'

Ms Fensham believes there are truths for children to learn from in more traditional dark fairytales.

'Stories like Hansel and Gretel resonate with you for your entire lifetime,' she told The Daily Telegraph.

'I often think of it and wonder if that story emerged from the grimness of the real-life famine that would have besotted Europe, where children would have been sent out because there wasn't enough food in the house and people would have eaten children


Thursday, June 21, 2018

Dunkin’ Donuts removes sign promising free food for reporting staff shouting in foreign languages

A sign that promised customers free coffee and pastries for reporting staff who were shouting in a language other than English has been removed from a Baltimore Dunkin’ Donuts franchise following an outcry.

The sign asked people to call the franchise’s general manager and report any staff who were shouting in a foreign language. It offered a free cup of coffee and a pastry to anyone who called and reported an employee’s name.

The sign, which appeared in the franchise on Baltimore’s West 41st Street, prompted a significant outcry on social media, with people labelling it “shocking” and “xenophobic”.

“Y'all got some business to handle… Deleting my Dunkin App until you oust this franchise owner,” one Twitter user wrote.

A spokesperson for the doughnut company told RT that the sign has been removed.

“Dunkin’ Donuts and our franchisees share the goal of creating a welcoming and hospitable environment for all guests,” the spokesperson said.

“The franchise owner has informed us that the sign was posted by their general manager based on her own personal judgment to ensure those standards are being met. While her intent was to address a customer service and satisfaction issue, the franchisee determined her approach was inappropriate and confirmed the sign has been removed.”


Nazi flying saucer toy is taken off the shelves in Germany because it suggested Hitler's scientists successfully built a space ship

The claim that the Nazis had a flying saucer is a common one but there is no concrete evidence of one and the idea is most improbable. 

Nazi aeronautical engineers were however very active in designing and building futuristic aircraft and the Ho-229 "Flying wing" actually flew.  The only remaining example of it is presently being restored. 

Long range bombers capable of reaching the USA were also built and tested

A Nazi flying saucer toy has been taken off the shelves in Germany - amid claims it suggests Hitler's scientists successfully built a space ship.

The toy was presented as a Nazi-era war machine and described as 'the first object in the world capable of flying in space'.

But manufacturer Revell, based in Germany's North Rhine-Westphalia, has announced it will no longer be produced amid 'absolutely justified' criticism from those who pointed out such a craft never existed.

A product description described the toy, which features emblems from the Third Reich, as a 'round aircraft' that can fly 'up to speeds of 6,000 km/hr'.

The model kit for the 'Flying Saucer Haunebu II' priced at 49.99 euros is marketed as being suitable for children over 12 years.

The Military History Museum (MHM) in Dresden and the German Children's Protection Association are among the critics pointing out that Revell's product's description fails to mention the aircraft never existed.


Wednesday, June 20, 2018

We are all associates now

A fun job advertisement:

"Cleaning Associate, Student Accommodation, ST MARYS UNIVERSITY, TWICKENHAM"

The ad appeared in Times Higher. Is there no such thing as a cleaner anymore?

New premier bids to tie Ontario university funding to free speech

Doug Ford wants to expand mandate of province’s higher education regulator

Universities in Ontario could be the next higher education institutions to face punishment if they are deemed to fail to uphold free speech, after populist businessman Doug Ford was elected as premier of the Canadian province.

The centre-right Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario, led by Mr Ford, won the Ontario general election earlier this month after securing 40.5 per cent of the vote, ending 15 years of power for the Ontario Liberal Party.

Mr Ford’s main pledge concerning higher education, which is a provincial responsibility in Canada, was to expand the mandate of the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) to include a complaints and investigations process to evaluate violations of free speech.

Mr Ford’s party said that “postsecondary funding decisions will be tied to the results of the HEQCO’s investigations and, thereby, the willingness of university administrators to protect free speech for all students and faculty”.

However, Mr Ford, whose late brother Rob Ford was the controversial mayor of Toronto from 2010 to 2014, did not provide details on what he defined as a free speech violation. 

Several Canadian universities have been embroiled in free speech controversies in recent years. Earlier this year, Wilfrid Laurier University, one of Ontario’s 22 public universities, came under fire after reprimanding a teaching assistant for showing a video clip of a debate on gender-neutral pronouns, even though no formal or informal complaint had been filed.

If Mr Ford’s policy is implemented, institutions in Canada’s most populous province – also including the University of Toronto and McMaster University – could face similar scrutiny over free speech to their counterparts in the UK and US.


Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The British police response to Lush's ads is utterly out of order

An advertising campaign by cosmetics firm Lush has drawn condemnation from the home secretary, praise from self-styled progressives, and, in one of its shops, a visit from the police.

Through its new marketing campaign, the 'gourmet' soap company attempted to draw attention to the so-called 'Spy Cops' scandal, in which undercover police officers infiltrated activist groups, sometimes initiating relationships and fathering children with those they were spying on. Several Lush shops displayed posters featuring undercover and uniformed police officers with the message 'Paid to Lie? #Spycops'. Others plastered their shop windows with hazard tape, telling shoppers, 'Police have crossed a line'.

But while it has alienated many, Lush's marketing campaign has successfully targeted, with razor-sharp precision, its desired audience of middle-class, pseudo-radical Corbyn supporters - many of whom have come out in defence of the brand. Corbynistas have suspended their calls to overthrow capitalism in order to gush over Lush, praising the company as 'heroes'. A former Green Party mayoral candidate offered her 'solidarity' to the private limited company. For Owen Jones, anyone who points out that the for-profit firm, which turned over £723 million in 2017, might have 'commercial motives' to run its advertising campaign must be an 'exceptionally smug so-called "centrist"'.

While, for some, the campaign means the Lush brand has become sainted, for others it is now tainted. Twitter and Facebook have been awash with outrage at the suggestion that some police officers may not be entirely upstanding custodians of the law. Current and former officers filmed themselves dumping their bath bombs and body lotions, and called for a boycott of the shop, using the hashtag, #FlushLush. The vice chairman of the Police Federation called the campaign 'offensive, disgusting and insulting'. Tens of thousands of users have given Lush the lowest possible rating on its Facebook page. Even home secretary Sajid Javid took to Twitter to air his fury over the campaign. 'Never thought I would see a mainstream British retailer running a public advertising campaign against our hard-working police', he fumed.

But it is one thing for police officers to vent their spleen about Lush's campaign online - something that no matter how pathetic it may appear, they should have the right to do. It is another to use one's status as a police officer to pressure someone into removing posters, particularly those that are critical of the police. When one officer visited a Lush shop in Peterborough, after a chat with the manager, he succeeded in getting the window display removed. Worse still, the chair of the Cambridge Police Federation tweeted that the removal of the posters showed that some Lush staff 'care about [the police's] feelings after all'. Even, the armed wing of the state now complains of hurt feelings and believes that those feelings should take priority over free expression.


Vanity Von Glow: the left eats its own

Meet the drag queen banned for defending free speech.

The ever-escalating intolerance of the liberal-left is one of the more peculiar aspects of the culture wars. By now we are familiar with the spectacle of self-proclaimed radicals who demand ideological conformity, who wield the hatchet of identity politics in order to divide humanity into increasingly segregated groups. Through social media, this powerful minority regularly penalises dissent. Often the most venomous campaigns are directed not at political opponents, but at those within the tribe who have deviated from the righteous path.

Just ask Vanity Von Glow, the drag queen played by Thom Glow, who has recently been banned from various London venues for appearing at the 'Day for Freedom' in May. This free-speech rally had been organised by Tommy Robinson, former head of the English Defence League. Because of the link to Robinson, the event was inaccurately branded a 'far-right rally' by many in the mainstream media. Von Glow took the view that free speech is not a partisan issue and made the courageous decision to perform. The backlash was as intense as it was predictable.

'The problem is that the far left don't just go for calling you names', Von Glow told Sky News after the boycott began. 'Their party trick at the moment is to go for your source of income. At the moment they've been making sure that my shows are cancelled. They want to see me unemployed, possibly they want to see me homeless. It's quite an aggressive tactic.' One cabaret venue, Her Upstairs, claimed that 'her alignment with such an event calls into question her motives'. Not content with cancelling all future bookings, it sought to smear her reputation through the fallacy of guilt by association.


Monday, June 18, 2018

If you say untrue things about government, is the government free to publish true things about you?

One would think it only fair but apparently government should be muzzled, according to some.  And lies are not protected free speech

Australia’s national privacy office has ruled that individuals should “reasonably expect” the government will release sensitive personal data publicly to refute its critics, sparking concerns of a “chilling effect” on free speech.

Late on Monday evening, the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner released the findings of an inquiry it launched in March last year following the Department of Human Services’ release of a blogger’s personal Centrelink history to a media organisation.

The Department did so to refute details contained in an opinion piece by the blogger for Fairfax Media in which she claimed that she had been “terrorised” by Centrelink as part of the controversial robodebt scheme.

After the opinion piece was published in February 2017, a briefing was provided to another journalist that detailed the blogger’s welfare history. This lead to a follow-up article claiming Centrelink may have been “unfairly castigated”.

The blogger in question complained to the OAIC, and former information and privacy commissioner Timothy Pilgrim opened an investigation into the matter in March.

Fourteen months later, the office has decided that the government was allowed to release the personal data under the Australian Privacy Principles, as individuals should “reasonably expect” the government to release private information under those circumstances.

The decision has sparked huge backlash against the OAIC and the country’s privacy laws more broadly.

The Australian Privacy Principles, which apply to all Australian government departments and agencies, include a range of exceptions where the personal information of an individual can be disclosed for another purpose.

These include when the individual would “reasonably expect the secondary use or disclosure” and this is related to the primary purpose of collection of the information.

It is under this exception that the department was allowed to release the blogger’s personal information to the media, the OAIC ruled.

“Having carefully considered the specific public statements made by the Centrelink customer, and the specific information disclosed in response, the acting Australian Information Commissioner and acting Privacy Commissioner reached the conclusion that, in this instance, the disclosure was permitted by APP 6.2(a)(ii),” the OAIC said in its decision.

The decision was made more than a year after the investigation was launched, and after the retirement of former privacy commissioner Timothy Pilgrim.

Angelene Falk has been serving as acting privacy commissioner since Mr Pilgrim’s retirement in March, with the agency close to announcing his replacement.

The OAIC’s decision pointed to a case note from 2010 as providing precedent, in which the Commissioner’s Plain English Guidelines to Information Privacy Principles gives examples of when an individual may be considered to be “reasonably likely” to think their information may be disseminated.

“A person who complains publicly about an agency in relation to their circumstances (for example, to the media) is considered to be reasonably likely to be aware that the agency may respond publicly – and in a way that reveals personal information relevant to the issues they have raised,” the guidelines say.

A number of Australian civil and digital rights advocates have been left outraged by the decision, with Electronic Frontiers Australia board member Peter Tonoli saying it “flies in the face of trust in government”.

Electronic Frontiers Australia policy team member Drew Mayo said she is concerned the recent ruling could have a chilling effect on criticisms of the government, with individuals concerned that their sensitive data will then be released publicly.

“EFA is extremely concerned about the implications of the recent ruling. The chilling effect posed by this decision is a direct risk to democracy and an attack on the strongest free speech protection Australians have, the implied right of political communication,” Mr Mayo told

“We call on the government to enshrine in law the right of Australians to comment robustly on government policy without the risk of private data being released in retribution.”

The department has claimed that the release of the sensitive data was “proportionate” given the claims made in the blogger’s opinion piece.

“The recipient had made a number of claims that were unfounded and it is the opinion of officers that this was likely to concern other individuals,” Department secretary Kathryn Campbell said.

“That’s why we felt that it was appropriate to release the information, so that people knew it was important to file their tax returns and tell us about changes in their circumstances. In this case, our data said that had not occurred and that is why we had been chasing the debt,” she said.


Censoring survivors of the Stasi

It is a disturbing irony that Germany now silences victims of GDR terror.

Siegmar Faust, a former dissident from the German Democratic Republic (GDR), was once celebrated as a hero in West Germany for speaking his mind. Now he has lost his job for doing exactly that.

As a political prisoner, he spent 400 days in solitary confinement in the so-called ‘tiger cage’ in Cottbus – the Stasi’s most notorious prison. Faust was freed and moved to West Germany in 1976. Forty years on, he was giving guided tours through the former Stasi prison of Berlin-Hohenschönhausen, which is now a museum.

Earlier this month, however, he was fired over comments he made in a newspaper interview, in which he expressed sympathy for Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) and relativised the Holocaust. Faust’s case raises serious questions about free speech and the treatment of people with unconventional and right-wing views in Germany today.

Earlier this year, Der Spiegel reported that several prominent former GDR dissidents, including Faust, had become supporters of the populist AfD, and even of the right-wing Pegida movement. It quotes one of Faust’s pamphlets, in which he rails against the ‘ideologically corrupted zeitgeist’. He accuses the ‘European Union of the Socialist Soviet Republic’ and Mutti (Angela Merkel) of doing everything in their power to abolish nations and cultures. The Koran is ‘the Bible of Satan’, and Germany should only accept secular Muslims as immigrants, he says.

Following this, Faust was interviewed in the Berliner Zeitung. He criticised the German state’s treatment of the imprisoned Holocaust denier, Horst Mahler, and questioned whether the number six million – referring to the six million Jews who died in the Holocaust – was ‘sacred’. ‘I have no sympathy for Mahler but I find it unbearable what the justice system is doing here’, he said. He also reportedly said that though he understood the historical singularity of the Nazis’ crimes, eventually we should probably stop talking about it. (Faust denies he said this.)

But while Faust may hold a number of objectionable views, he was right about the treatment of Mahler, one of the most obnoxious and tragic figures in today’s Germany. Once a famous lawyer, his mad, repeated claims that the official Holocaust accounts were based on a lie has seen him imprisoned several times. Now in his 80s, he is serving a 12-year sentence and will most likely die in prison. Of course, Faust can relate to what it is like to be imprisoned for your beliefs.

Until the Berliner Zeitung interview, there had been no complaints about the way Faust carried out his tours at the prison-turned-museum and there was no indication that he had shared his political views with any visitors. But the museum found itself under intense pressure to sack him. Rather than criticising what is clearly an attack on free speech, much of the German press welcomed his dismissal and heaped praise on the journalist who brought the offending comments to light.

The speed with which even a former political prisoner like Faust can be punished for their political views is worrying. It brings back memories of the 1970s, when, at the height of the Cold War, teachers in West Germany who sympathised with communism were banned from teaching. The so-called Radikalenerlass affected thousands of teachers.

 It is horrifying that supposedly free Germany is punishing the survivors of the GDR for what they think and say.


Sunday, June 17, 2018

University Of Michigan Backs Down After DOJ Agrees Its Speech Code Was Unconstitutional

The University of Michigan (UM), which had initially defiantly insisted that a lawsuit accusing its speech code of being unconstitutionally broad was based on “mistaken premises,” suddenly has done an about-face the same day the U.S. Department of Justice offered a statement of interest backing the suit.

As Grace Gottschling of Campus Reform reports, Speech First filed a lawsuit against UM, stating, “The University of Michigan has a disciplinary code that prohibits ‘harassment’ and ‘bullying,’ and increases the penalties if such actions are motivated by ‘bias.’

As used, these concepts capture staggering amounts of protected speech and expression given that Michigan defines harassment as ‘unwanted negative attention perceived as intimidating, demeaning, or bothersome to an individual.’”

UM responded with a court filing asserting the lawsuit “mischaracterized its policies and programs.”

The day the DOJ offered its statement, UM spokesperson Rick Fitzgerald initially told Michigan Radio that the government’s attorneys had misinterpreted UM’s policies, saying, “Contrary to the department’s statement, the university’s Bias Response Team does not 'have the authority to subject students to discipline and sanction. It provides support to students on a voluntary basis; it does not investigate claims of bias or discipline students in any way.”

But later Fitzgerald posted an announcement on the school’s news website admitting that UM “revised the statutory language to narrow the potential scope of what is prohibited, and to add additional safeguards for free speech.”


Cancer Research UK swaps the word 'woman' for 'everyone with a cervix' in smear test campaign to avoid offending transgender people

Cancer Research UK has swapped the word 'woman' for 'everyone' in its cervical screening campaign to avoid offending transgender people.

The charity decided to pull the gendered word from its latest campaign, using the phrase 'everyone with a cervix'.

Cancer Research UK confirmed the move was in a bid to be more inclusive and not to exclude anyone who is biologically female but identifies as male.

The change drew a mixed reaction, as some claimed it prioritised being politically correct over public health, while others applauded the 'life-saving' word swap.

The tweet from the campaign reads: 'Cervical screening (or the smear test) is relevant for everyone aged 25-64 with a cervix. Watch our animation to find out what to expect when you go for screening.'

Fiona Osgun from Cancer Research UK told the Times: 'Cervical cancer develops in anyone who has a cervix. This includes women as well as people with other gender identities such as trans men.

'But screening might not be relevant for all women such as those who have had a full hysterectomy. We phrased our information on cervical screening awareness week to reflect this.'

Smear tests are simple, taking 10 minutes and are used to detect abnormal cells on the cervix, which is the entrance to the uterus from the vagina.

Removing these cells can prevent cervical cancer, as around 3,000 cases of the disease are diagnosed each year in the UK. 

The NHS advocates for women as well as trans men who have not had a total hysterectomy, to go for routine cervical screening tests. 

After the roll out of the new campaign, people took to Twitter to criticise the change.

Jo wrote: 'I'm worried about the quality of your research if you don't know it's WOMEN that have a cervix.'


Friday, June 15, 2018

Student suspended for "wrong" view of abortion

Expressing her view was "bullying"

It is alleged that two students were talking about abortion at school and discussed a hypothetical situation in which one would be faced with the choice of keeping a baby if it were known to have special needs.

When one girl, who has a disability, asked the other her opinion on the matter, the student said that yes, she would abort. 

The questioner, insulted by the harsh nature of the other student’s sentiments, went to the school administration with her concerns.

In a Facebook post, the student who was suspended over alleged bullying outlined her side of the story.

“We were part of a class where students freely shared their thoughts, opinions and beliefs,” read the post. “I have always been hesitant to express myself when I was speaking with this student, I told them that I didn’t want to offend them with any of my opinions.”

Halton District School Board superintendent Scott Podrebarac said they cannot comment on the specific incident. “I know this is being positioned as a free-speech case,” he said. “If free speech harms someone, then there is a toll. There are limits to free speech when it harms an individual.” [So who was harmed??]

Nicole Rees, Shelley Popp and Tina McFadden say staff at the school asked the girl to apologize for her comments, to which she refused and then wrote a poem titled "Not Sorry."

Later, other students wore to school T-shirts with the poem printed on them, and they were subsequently suspended as well for contributing to the alleged bullying.

“The moment they told her to apologize they infringed on her rights,” said Nicole Rees, a local parent who is helping organize the protest. “Whether you agree with her or not isn’t the issue, they’re viewing it as a hate statement."


Australian soldiers fly a Nazi swastika flag over their military vehicle in Afghanistan

Military men in all of the services tend to adorn their vehicles and equipment with aggressive iconography and this would have been simply that: minatory but not political

Australian soldiers have been photographed flying a Nazi flag over a military vehicle in Afghanistan.

The disturbing images show a swastika symbol - synonymous with racial hatred, fascism and genocide - hoisted above Australian Defence personnel in 2007.

An army source told the ABC a solider took the flag to the warzone as a 'twisted joke' - not as an expression of Nazism.

They claimed the flag was flown for a 'prolonged period', though the Department of Defence refuted that claim.

'Defence and the ADF reject as abhorrent everything this flag represents. Neither the flag nor its use are in line with Defence values,' a spokesman told Daily Mail Australia.

'The flag was briefly raised above an Australian Army vehicle in Afghanistan in 2007. The commander took immediate action to have the offensive flag taken down.

'It is totally inappropriate for any ADF vehicle or company to have a flag of this nature... The flag was destroyed once the unit returned from that operation.'

The spokesman said the soldiers involved were cautioned and received further counselling.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull slammed the flag as 'completely and utterly unacceptable'. 'It was absolutely wrong and their commanders took action at the time,' Mr Turnbull said in Hobart on Thursday.


Thursday, June 14, 2018

The first in a series of planned free speech rallies in Australia draws dozens of activists in support of TV host Sonia Kruger and jailed UK activist Tommy Robinson

Dozens of protesters have rallied in support of Australian television host Sonia Kruger and incarcerated far-right British activist Tommy Robinson.

The Melbourne 'free speech' rally was the first of four to be held nationwide over the weekend by the Australian Liberty Alliance, with Kruger currently under fire after calling for an Australian Muslim ban.

Former English Defence League leader Tommy Robinson was arrested a week ago for using social media to broadcast details of a trial which is subject to blanket reporting restrictions.

Robinson, who was listed by his real name Stephen Christopher Yaxley-Lennon on court documents, was sentenced to 13 months in jail on the same day as his arrest.

'Tommy resonates with a lot of people. He's a working class man, he's like a typical Aussie. They (Australian supporters) feel like what he says is our future here too,' organiser Avi Yemini told AAP on Saturday.

He told the crowd that 'I, you, we all are Tommy Robinson'.

'If that can happen to a man who stands up to defend our rights, it can happen to anyone.' 

The crowd sang the Australian anthem followed by chants for Robinson, with hecklers yelling at the crowd nearby.

Australian Liberty Alliance's Debbie Robinson said 'most people in Australia would agree with Sonia Kruger'.


Jewish students object to glorification of Palestinian violence

A female suicide bomber who killed dozens of Israeli soldiers has graced the front cover of a University of Sydney student newspaper, and Jewish students who complained about the cover have been “condemned” for ­censorship.

Hamida al-Taher killed more than 50 people, mainly Israeli military personnel, when she blew herself up in Southern Lebanon in 1985. The special edition of the University of Sydney’s student newspaper Honi Soit, produced by the student women’s collective a fortnight ago, put her on the cover and called her a “martyr” in an issue dedicated to the struggle against “Israeli colonisation”.

The student queer collective’s edition of Honi Soit on April 16 was criticised for having a picture of a petrol bomb on the cover and supporting a boycott of Israel.

The Australasian Union of Jewish Students has called for an apology over the covers. “They are particularly disturbing to Jewish students as they display a blatant disdain for Israeli victims of violence,” AUJS national political ­director Noa Bloch said. “By disseminating publications that sacrifice respectful dialogue … it inevitably causes distress among Jewish and other students who support Israel.”

The University of Sydney’s ­Student Representative Council passed a motion, 11 to 10, against AUJS on Wednesday night for complaining about the publication.

“This SRC condemns AUJS for suggesting the university should intervene to censor a student-run publication,” the motion reads.  “This SRC congratulates those who put together the women’s ­edition of Honi for their brave and highly defensible cover depicting a pro-Palestine freedom fighter (opposing) the ­illegal Israeli occupation of Lebanon and Palestine.”

Executive Council for Australian Jewry chief executive Peter Wertheim said the student publication “glorifying terrorism … with positive portrayals of violent symbols, including a terrorist in military fatigues pointing a rifle … is despicable”.

The University of Sydney said it did not condone the cover but would not intervene.


Wednesday, June 13, 2018

YouTube Terminates Channel of Firearms Parts Retailer

YouTube suddenly terminated the channel for the firearms parts company Brownells, the company claimed on Saturday.

The 80-year-old gun supplies company reached out to followers on social media, asking them to contact Google, which owns YouTube, about the decision.

“If you’re opposed to the attacks on our communitys 1st & 2nd Amendment rights, please contact Google,” Brownells said.

Brownells used their YouTube channel to post instructional videos on how different guns work and how to assemble and maintain firearms.

Comments on social media were mostly critical of the move, many users saying Brownells is the wrong entity to go after to prevent gun violence.

Powerful advertising platforms like Google, Facebook, and Twitter have come under fire recently from Second Amendment advocates for apparent censorship of gun-related content. Even products meant to increase gun safety, such as ZORE’s highly-rated gun safety lock, have seen their advertisements censored, the internet platforms citing policies restricting ads for firearms sales.

Update Monday 10:53am: Brownells announced Monday morning on Twitter that their channel has been restored and thanked those who voiced support.


LOL! Twitter Chief Caves To Liberal Outcry: Says He Was Wrong To Eat At Chick-Fil-A

And this idiot is in charge of a major communications medium.  This is the guy behind a lot of censorship of conservative speech

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey on Sunday expressed regret over eating at Chick-fil-A, because of the chicken company’s CEO’s personal views on gay marriage.

Dorsey tweeted a screenshot from his phone that showed a purchase he had made at Chick-fil-A using a mobile application. After a liberal backlash, however, Dorsey apologized for eating at the popular fast food restaurant.

At issue was Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy’s 2012 support for defining marriage as between a man and a woman, which he described as “the biblical definition of a family.”

Former CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien was among those to call out Dorsey for eating at the self-described home of the original chicken sandwich. O’Brien indicated that Dorsey had sinned by publicly eating at Chick-fil-A during gay pride month.

“You’re right,” Dorsey conceded. “Completely forgot about their background.”


Tuesday, June 12, 2018

CrossFit Muscles Out Conservatives
If having an opinion on sexuality were a fireable offense, then just about every office in America would be empty! Unfortunately at CrossFit headquarters, Russell Berger’s is. Wednesday, the pastor and company spokesman was sacked by the fitness business because he dared to exercise something else: free speech!

The ruckus started earlier this month when an Indiana branch of the gym decided to cancel a workout that was being hosted specifically for LGBT pride month. Berger applauded the group for taking a stand, tweeting, “As someone who personally believes celebrating ‘pride’ is a sin, I’d like to personally encourage #CrossFitInfiltrate for standing by their convictions and refusing to host an @indypride workout. The intolerance of the LGBTQ ideology toward any alternative views is mind-blowing.”

The backlash was immediate — and ferocious. Initially, CrossFit execs put Berger on unpaid leave to see if the extremists’ anger would cool. But after the response got more heated, the owners thought better of it and outright fired him.

“The statements made today by Russell Berger do not reflect the view of CrossFit Inc. For this reason, his employment with CrossFit has been terminated.” That was the polite way of putting it. CrossFit CEO Greg Glassman’s response was much more vicious. “He needs to take a big dose of ‘shut the f—k up,’” Glassman told a reporter, “and hide out for awhile.” It’s sad, he went on, “to have some zealot in his off-time do something this stupid. We’re all upset. The whole company is upset.”

Of course, there will be a lot of debate about whether Berger should have posted what he did as a representative of the company. But there should be no debate about the ruthless hostility that CrossFit’s CEO has for a view that roughly half the country holds! No one should level this kind of vitriol at an employee and expect to be taken seriously on matters of tolerance.


The Leftist hate speech never lets up

Because the hate just boils to overflowing in them.  They are very troubled people

Robert DeNiro yelled 'f*** Trump' during a foul-mouthed rant at the Tony Awards and got a standing ovation. The audience went wild,  some rising to their feet. DeNiro pumped his fists triumphantly.

The outburst was bleeped, so Broadway fans watching at home didn't hear the expletive. 

 And when the applause died down, the 74 year-old actor started talking again, 'its no longer 'down with Trump,' its f*** Trump. '

He got a full standing ovation, and then said, 'now I'll get to my presentation.'


Monday, June 11, 2018

EU's proposed rules on copyright could kill off user-generated content, critics warn

Proposed European Union regulations threaten to 'destroy the internet as we know it', digital rights groups warn.

The Copyright Directive is an attempt to redesign copyright for the internet and harmonize aspects of the law across Europe.

A proposed addendum, Article 13 states that platform providers should 'take measures to ensure the functioning of agreements concluded with rights-holders for the use of their works'.

This would cause internet platforms to filter user-generated content, including text, audio, photos and video to protect copyrighted works - which could spell trouble for the future of memes.

While noble in theory, critics and campaigners say the legislation, which the European Parliament will vote on later this month, would be an excessive restriction on free speech.

And, it could mean the end of memes, remixes, and other user-generated content that routinely brings joy to the internet.

'Should Article 13 of the Copyright Directive be adopted, it will impose widespread censorship of all the content you share online,' said Copyright 4 Creativity, a campaign against the proposed article.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation and 56 other rights organisations sent an open letter to European lawmakers in October outlining their issues with legislation.

The European Parliament will vote on Article 13 later this month. Critics argue it would be an excessive restriction on free speech. Pictured: A Lebron James meme

'Article 13 appears to provoke such legal uncertainty that online services will have no other option than to monitor, filter and block EU citizens' communications if they are to have any chance of staying in business,' it read.


An afternoon of racist hate speech is in store for Londoners on Sunday, but as long as the hate is directed against Jews by Muslims, British authorities apparently have no problem with it

On Sunday June 10 in London, the yearly so-called Al Quds Day march will take place. The march is, basically, a call for the destruction of Israel, sometimes also Jews in general.

Last year in London, around 1000 people waved countless Hezbollah flags, in honor of Iran's proxy terrorist organization, while chanting slogans such as "Zionists/ISIS are the same, only difference is the name" and "From the river to the sea - Palestine will be free". They also carried banners that said, "We are all Hezbollah," (what a comforting thought for the British).

The leader of last year's London Al Quds rally, Nazim Ali – director of the "Islamic Human Rights Commission", which organizes the annual march – called for the annihilation of Israel and accused British Jews -- falsely -- of being behind the 2017 fire in London's Grenfell Towers apartment complex. "This demonstration calls on justice for Grenfell. Some of the biggest supporters of the Conservative Party are Zionists. They are responsible for the murder of the people in Grenfell". He also made it known to the crowd that he thought the UK should effectively become free of Jews: "We are fed up of the Zionists. We are fed up of their rabbis. We are fed up of their synagogues. We are fed up of their supporters."

"It's just an opinion," a female police officer said.

After complaints about Ali's statements, the Metropolitan Police investigated, but the Crown Prosecution Service declared in December 2017 that he would not face prosecution:

If, however, like the scholar Robert Spencer, one reports on these activities, one is barred from entering England.


Sunday, June 10, 2018

Leftist hate speech again: Outrage as Australia's ABC compares two respected journalists to Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik

The accuser: Professor of Modern History, A. Dirk Moses.  To me he looks like something recently extruded from a farm animal's rear end.  Am I being extreme in saying that?  It's no more extreme than what he said.  It's about time Leftist haters got some of their own back

The ABC has been forced to back down after publishing an article which likened two journalists to Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik.

The 'Western Civilization and Conservative Hysteria' article which appeared on the public broadcaster's religion and ethics website on Thursday was critical of The Australian's Greg Sheridan and Chris Kenny.   

The contributor piece, written by University of Sydney Professor of Modern History A. Dirk Moses, named the two News Corp employees after the paper published articles criticising a proposed undergraduate program.  

Those articles concerned a decision between the Australian National University and the Ramsay Centre to call off talks about a Western civilisation degree. 

'Do members of the right-wing commentariat think that Western countries are succumbing to a poisonous cocktail of multiculturalism, Muslim immigration, political correctness and cultural Marxism that dilutes the white population and brainwashes young people at school and university? It seems that, much like ­Anders Breivik and Steve Bannon, they do,' Professor Moses had initially written, The Australian reported.

Professor Moses had taken particular issue with Mr Sheridan's 'extraordinary statement that the ANU's decision "is a pivotal moment in modern Australian history"?'

The article was later amended to remove Anders Breivik's name. The reference to Mr Bannon, the former strategist to US President Donald Trump, is still listed.

The ABC was forced to make the amendment after it found the article was not in line with its own editorial guidelines. 'The ­reference was removed because it was not consistent with the ABC's editorial standards,' an ABC spokeswoman said.

Mr Moses told The Australian he 'did not intend to imply anyone was a mass murderer'. 

Breivik murdered 77 people in Norway on July 22, 2011, first setting-off a car bomb outside the government headquarters in Oslo, before opening fire on an annual summer camp on the island of Utoya.


Political correctness gone mad: Outrage as students are marked down for using 'mankind' and 'workmanship' in essays – and some universities have even banned the word 'she'

After being put under the spotlight, some university representatives are denying that this is their official policy. That may well be so but it is clearly an unofficial polcy and is no less authoritarian for that

Top universities across Australia have taken to slashing students grades for using banned 'gendered language'.

Terms such as 'man', 'she', 'wife', 'mother' and any other terminology that angers the PC brigade have been blacklisted.

Students claimed they have lost marks for referring to 'mankind' or 'workmanship' in assignments, as they are not deemed 'inclusive language.'

'People are losing marks for using everyday speech because it's not gender-neutral,' a politics student told The Courier Mail.

The student said the university can't just ban every word with 'man' in it, as more blacklisted words are uncovered, including 'sportsmanship' and man-made.'

The acting executive dean of The University of Queensland's Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Professor Julie Duck, thinks the penalties are justified. 'Students are advised to avoid gender-biased language in the same way they are advised to avoid racist language, cliches, contractions, colloquialisms, and slang in their essays.'

She said these issues should only marginally impact marks, depending on the severity of the infringement.

Queensland University of Technology students are also being impacted by the university's political correct crusade. Students are being penalised for failing to use 'inclusive language', and warned against describing women in a secondary position to something or somebody else. This includes, but is not limited to 'wife of', 'mother of' or 'daughter of'.

The suffix 'man' is deemed sexist, due to the implication that the comment is referential of a male.

Griffith University tells staff and students to 'look for non-binary pronouns so that misgendering doesn't occur'.

Universities are going so far as to reject notions of correct grammar in favour of excluding gendered language.

The University of Sydney prefers students to create sentences that are grammatically incorrect but politically correct, rather than use the words 'he' or 'she'. The example their style guide provides to exemplify this is: 'If a student wants their results early, they should go to the student centre.'

The University of Newcastle is yet another institution joining the fold, with an inclusive language guide that bans gendered language, telling students to use words such as humanity, human race or humankind instead.  

Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham openly disagrees with the policies, claiming that they were enforcing 'nanny state stuff' on students. 'Our universities should be better than this rubbish,' he said.


Friday, June 08, 2018

ACLU defends anti-Israel speech

With typical slippery Leftist logic, they say below that anti-Israel speech is not antisemitism. Have they not noticed that in condemning Israel they are condemning around 6 million Jews? Criticism of Israel's government is of course a different thing. No one does that more vigorously than Israelis themselves and it is perfectly legitimate for anyone to do. But criticizing Israel is not criticism of a government. It is criticism of a whole people. I am at a loss to see how either of the statements they give below are anything but antisemitism

Despite the disclaimer, ACLU seems to be supportive of the Palestinians and their activities. Yet listen to what we hear of the current activities of those self-same Palestinians in Gaza -- the Palestinians whom ACLU seems to think are unjustly treated:

"The Palestinians, who have been sending flaming kites from the Gaza Strip into Israel the past few weeks, say that their real goal is to "burn the Jews" and destroy Israel. They see the kites as a new weapon to achieve their goal. They are disappointed, they say, that no Jew has been hurt yet as a result of the fires triggered by the flaming kites" (SOURCE).

That is surely extreme and explicit antisemitism. No possible ambiguity about "Israel" there. I wonder when ACLU will condemn that? Is behavior like that what ACLU supports? I suspect it is. I think they are antisemitic too

Members of Congress last month introduced the “Anti-Semitism Awareness Act.” The bill purports to address a real problem: According to the FBI, incidents of hate crimes motivated by anti-Jewish bias have significantly increased in recent years.

But anti-Semitic harassment is already illegal under federal law. The new bill does not change that fact, but its overbreadth makes it likely that it will instead silence criticism of Israel that is protected by the First Amendment.

The proposed legislation, for example, defines speech that applies a “double standard for Israel,” or denies “the Jewish people their right to self-determination,” as evidence of anti-Semitism. It also directs the Department of Education to consider such speech in its investigations, which could result in a loss of federal funding for schools. On Monday, the ACLU sent a letter to Congress opposing the bill.

The ACLU does not take a position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but it does take firm positions on efforts to stifle free speech. The threat of a federal investigation and subsequent loss of government funding will likely scare schools into suppressing speech critical of Israel. Students and teachers who criticize the Israeli government or advocate for Palestinian rights are the obvious targets. But freedom of speech will be the loser.


Forget ‘free speech’ on campus, this debate is about free people

It has now become customary for academics to debate the line between free speech and hate speech. Yale, for instance, recently hosted a panel discussion whose central topic was the difference between hate speech and free speech and “the point where one shifts into the other.”

The distinction has already been debated throughout the academy, with university presidents, students on both coasts, and even linguist George Lakoff asserting that hate speech is not free speech (in other words, that hate speech should be censored).

This framing of the debate – as a distinction between free speech and hate speech – is unfortunate. “Hate speech” is fundamentally a type of speech or a mode of discourse. Whether or not speech is hateful depends on the intention of the speaker, or at times, the effects that it has on its audience. “Hate speech” can be meaningfully juxtaposed against other phenomena in this family, such as “political” or “controversial” speech – whether or not speech is “political” or “controversial” depends strongly on the intent and context of the utterance). However, “free speech” is not a type of speech in this way.

The term “free speech” probably comes from the US Bill of Rights, which is concerned with delineating rights that the government does not have. The first amendment declares that Congress has no right to pass laws abridging freedom of speech. Here, “freedom of speech” refers to the freedom of people to speak without governmental interference.

Rather than consistently referring to people, however, we customarily shorten “freedom of people to speak” to “free speech.” Although punchy, this shortening suggests that it is speech, rather than people, that can be free or unfree. But in fact, restrictions on speech are restrictions on people. Consequently, we ought to be having a debate about people.

Now, one might (incorrectly) believe that freedom of speech only helps the powerful. One might (incorrectly) believe that students’ views are easily swayed by allegedly immoral speakers. One might feel a sense of obligation to protect students from the stress or hurt that they might feel when confronted with provocative views.

Nonetheless, when we empower and encourage administrators to determine what forms of speech are acceptable on campus, our own freedoms are undermined.

Any academic rule that abridges the freedom of speech enhances the ability of others to exercise arbitrary power over us. We are demoted from a “free” to a “censored” (or at least, “censorable”) status. And, as progressives are rediscovering, bureaucrats and administrators interested in maintaining a pristine brand for their institution are perhaps more likely to censor provocative people on the left than on the right when empowered to do so.

Therefore, regardless of your own political commitments, ask yourself: when do you want administrators to have the right to censor you? Keep in mind that granting them the power to censor you implies permission to surveil as well, monitoring what you write in emails, what you post on Twitter, and your interactions with university stakeholders, both on campus and beyond.

These realities become much clearer when the discussion is shifted from discussing “free speech” to undermining the rights of people to express themselves freely. Restrictions aren’t being imposed on speech – they’re being imposed on people.

Faculty, consider when it is appropriate for your colleagues or your dean to regulate your freedom before you request the disinvitation of someone else. And when you get involved in a campus discussion about this issue, please discard “free speech” and talk about free people instead. I suspect the conversations will be much richer and more productive.


Thursday, June 07, 2018

Must not disrespect New Zealand's Maori

Sir Robert Jones is a feisty New Zealand property developer who is building a skyscraper made out of WOOD.  So he is quite a character. His acerbic but tongue-in-cheek humor was not appreciated recently.

He wrote in the National Business Review that a "Maori Gratitude Day", should replace Waitangi Day. As there were "no full-blooded Maoris in existence it indisputably follows that had it not been for migrants, mainly Brits, not a single Maori alive today … could have existed".

The holiday would enable Maori to "bring us breakfast in bed" and perform other tasks "out of gratitude for existing", Sir Robert wrote.

Sir Bob Jones has filed defamation papers against a filmmaker behind a petition to have his knighthood revoked after a controversial newspaper column.

More than 68,000 people signed the petition, which was delivered to Parliament in March, in response to Jones' February 2 column in the National Business Review calling for a Māori "Gratitude Day" instead of Waitangi Day.

Filmmaker Renae Maihi started the petition and presented it to Labour MP Kiritapu Allan with the support of Waikato University Professor Pou Temara, an expert in te reo and tikanga.

The petition read: "In signing this petition we urge you, our Prime Minister the Rt. Hon. Jacinda Ardern, to take his knighthood away from him. It is in your power. Set a precedent for the country and a message that this will not be tolerated and hate speech of this type is not welcome here."

Jones' knighthood is for services to the business community.

Today, the High Court confirmed defamation papers were filed in Wellington against Maihi. A date for a case management conference has yet to be set.


Campaigners lock horns with EU justice chief on ‘hate speech’

EU Justice Commissioner Věra Jourová stood by the EU’s principles that freedom of speech was not absolute at a panel discussion held in Brussels, saying that attempts to regulate hate speech were justified but her comments prompted a fierce debate.

Jourová added that Austria and France were among the member states that were considering a German-style law on ‘hate speech’ if the EU Code of Conduct did not prove successful.

The Czech official stressed that she was “offended” by the suggestion that the Code amounted to censorship.

Speaking in response to the Commissioner, Prof. Nadine Strossen, a former president of the American Civil Liberties Union, argued that the EU executive’s approach was misguided.

“No matter how well-intentioned, in practice, prohibiting ‘hate speech’ is ineffective at best and counterproductive at worst,” she said. “We have to answer speech we disagree with with more speech.”

“Hate is an emotion. There is no agreed upon concept of ‘hate speech’. One person’s ‘hate speech’ is another person’s cherished speech,” she added.

Replying to Jourová’s claim that the Code was not censorship, Strossen asked: “How can you say that the code of conduct does not introduce censorship when the result is the same?”

“What the Commission is doing with the code of conduct is telling the IT industry ‘do it yourself or we will do it for you’,” she added.

Sophia Kuby, the director of EU Advocacy for ADF International, also criticised the Code of Conduct and legislation on ‘hate speech’.

“In the Western world, we seem to have forgotten the fundamental link between freedom of speech and all other freedoms in society. Do away with free speech and you do away with a free society.”

“Censorship is always a step in the wrong direction. ‘Hate speech’ laws, as well as the EU Code of Conduct on ‘countering illegal hate speech online’, create a ‘you-can’t-say-that’ culture which silences debate and has a chilling effect on society. In a free society, ideas should be fought with ideas, not criminal penalties,” said Kuby.


Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Stop Calling Men Deadbeats

Last week, a judge in New York ruled that a 30-year-old man must move out of his childhood home on June 1 after his parents served him with several notices asking him to go. The ruling inadvertently exposed a hidden truth: The boys are not all right.

A generation of damaged boys are turning into impaired men and, as seen by the mocking coverage of this case, we’re treating this development like a joke, encouraged to ridicule and condemn them for it....

Part of the problem is we’ve been encouraging girls at the expense of boys. The language of empowerment we use around girls is absent from how we talk to boys. The expectation that males will succeed just because they are male has been smashed, just like feminists wanted, but now what? To shrug our shoulders and not care what happens to a generation of young men is to produce a generation of Michael Rotondos, adrift and living at home as they enter their 30s.

It doesn’t help that this demographic is also finding it so hard to get, and stay, employed. An Economic Policy Institute report from February found that men are absent from the workforce in large numbers. This is a big change from the past. The report noted that “in 1979, only 6.3 percent of prime-age men did not work at all over the course of a year, but that number nearly doubled to 11.9 percent in 2016.” The telling thing is that there isn’t widespread concern about this; instead there is a celebration that women are outpacing men at school and at work.

The rising prominence of Canadian clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson is a development of this. He has been described as a “father figure” to this group of lost boys. His controversial speeches, which are attended overwhelmingly by men and offer direction on getting their lives in order — to literally “clean up their room” — is taking the place of parents who have failed to instruct their children to do the same.

We need to start teaching boys how to “clean up their rooms” or not be so surprised that grown-up men still live in them.

Without a combination of changes, men have no reason to move out of the house and into a world that hates them. And a good start would be to quit calling men deadbeats all the time. That isn't going to motivate any man to do anything but dig his heels in.


Australia: Hate speech laws to be toughened to stop violent threats online or in the street

Threats or advocacy of violence are normally acknowledged as outside free speech protections

After years of widespread community campaigning, the New South Wales Government will move to strengthen the state's "ineffective" hate speech laws.

Under the proposed legislation introduced to Parliament today, individuals who incite violence against a community or person based on their race could face up to three years in prison and an $11,000 fine.

The bill, if passed, will create a new offence in the Crimes Act of "publicly threatening or inciting violence" on the grounds of race, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex or HIV/AIDS status.

Attorney-General Mark Speakman said current provisions in the Anti-Discrimination Act have been ineffective in prosecuting people accused of encouraging violence and have not led to a successful prosecution in 30 years.  "We are very serious with these laws and we will throw the book at anyone who breaches them," he said.

Mr Speakman said there had been a reluctance to use the existing laws because of "procedural hurdles" and the "convoluted wording" of the legislation.

He said the new laws would apply to speech on social media and "anything that is available to the public whether it is transmitted electronically or physically in the street".

"Free speech does not include the right to incite or threaten violence based on peoples' characteristics," he said.

"This has nothing to do with saying things that are controversial, with robust debate, with intense criticism of other groups, this is about stopping violence.

The legislation will abolish offences in the Anti-Discrimination Act that currently carry a maximum sentence of six months in jail.
'It makes us all a whole lot safer'

Opposition Leader Luke Foley, who introduced a similar bill to Parliament earlier this year, welcomed the announcement.  "For too long some in the Liberal Party have confused freedom of speech with race hate," he said.

"Tough new laws will send a signal to the likes to the extremist fringe that their brand of racism is no longer tolerated under the law."


Tuesday, June 05, 2018

We have to stop saying ‘Asian grooming gangs’

The reality is Muslim pedophile rapist gangs

Last month, two decisions were made by IPSO, the body which regulates most of the British press, in relation to the use of the word ‘Asians’. A complaint against The Sunday Times was upheld. IPSO ruled that the paper had published an inaccurate headline when it claimed that ‘Asians make up 80 per cent of child groomers’. The Muslim Council of Britain’s Miqdaad Versi called for a correction to clarify that the 80 per cent referred specifically to grooming ‘gangs’, not all child groomers.

But who are we referring to when we use the word ‘Asians’? The other complaint sought to address this issue. It was lodged by Sikh, Hindu and Pakistani-Christian groups, concerned about the liberal use of the word ‘Asian’ in the Sunday Mirror’s investigation into child-grooming gangs in Telford. The Sunday Mirror exposed ‘epidemic’ levels of child sexual exploitation in the northern town, where it was suggested that up to 1,000 girls, some as young as 11, had been abused by Asian men.

But the term ‘Asian’ is far too broad and smears innocent communities, said the complainants. They added that many Asian girls had been targeted by grooming gangs, too. But IPSO rejected their complaint. The regulator ruled that it was not ‘inaccurate to say the men were “mainly Asian”’. Nor did it give a ‘significantly misleading impression’, it said. Presumably, the editors’ code would also consider it accurate to describe these men as ‘mammals’, ‘humans’ or even ‘sentient beings’.

Joking aside, the complainants were right. The media’s use of ‘Asian’ to describe grooming gangs not only masks the ethno-religious identity of the perpetrators – it also throws Sikhs, Hindus, Pakistani-Christians and every other Asian under the bus. Gangs of Indian, Japanese and Korean men are not rampaging across Britain’s towns and cities, sexually abusing underage white girls. The men doing so are predominantly of Pakistani-Muslim heritage.

There is a great deal of evidence to support this. A 2017 Quilliam report, which researched the cases of 58 grooming gangs since 2005, found that 84 per cent of grooming-gang members are (South) Asian and the majority were ‘of Pakistani origin, with Muslim heritage’. The report suggests this background influenced the crimes these men committed against mainly young, white girls. In 2012, Judge Gerald Clifton foreshadowed this finding when sentencing nine members of a Rochdale grooming gang. He said they had treated their victims as ‘worthless and beyond all respect’, partly because they were not of the offenders’ ‘community or religion’. Recently, a Rotherham grooming-gang survivor described how she was persecuted for being ‘a white slag’ because she was non-Muslim.

Despite all this evidence, speaking out against Pakistani-Muslim grooming gangs is difficult. Muslims who speak out are labelled as traitors, while non-Muslims are called bigots. For instance, when Amina Lone, Labour councillor in Manchester, herself a Muslim, defended Sarah Champion for writing about this trend in the Sun, the Labour Party deselected her.

None of this is to say that all Pakistani-Muslim men are a threat. But we need to clearly identify perpetrators and scrutinise their motivations. What is it about these men that makes them more likely to be involved in these crimes, whereas Pakistani men of other faith backgrounds aren’t? If we shy away from asking these questions we not only mystify the problem, we fuel the agenda of racists who always use this issue as a pretext to smear entire communities. Our inability to talk about this sensitively has allowed them to hijack it.

Simply being specific about the background of those convicted in grooming-gang cases can lead to Tourette’s-like accusations of Islamophobia, racism or hate. The fear of being called out can be disabling. It has undoubtedly deterred officers in local government, the police and civil society from taking steps to safeguard the welfare of vulnerable, underage girls. Fortunately, this has failed to deter journalists like The Times’ Andrew Norfolk, whose courageous pursuit of the truth uncovered the Rotherham grooming scandal and prompted a government inquiry.

But much of the British media has a lot to answer for. In insisting on referring to grooming gangs as ‘Asian’, journalists are lending the perpetrators a cloak of anonymity and demonising the rest of us.