Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Elwood P. Dowd the Prophet?



This is part of a free speech protest (for, not against!). You can get more details at Blazing Cat Fur.

And just so you know I'm an equal opportunity "prophet" mocker:






The 'soft war' against Israel

What follows is excerpted from a speech delivered by former Spanish prime minister Jose Maria Aznar in Toronto on Nov. 29 at an event sponsored by the UJA Federation.


I have always thought that a politician's actions speak louder than words. That's the reason why, a few months ago, I started to contact some friends in order to launch the "Friends of Israel Initiative." 

For many, it's become easy to denounce the harshness of Israel's military actions. Yet these same voices disregard Hezbollah's nonstop rearming in Southern Lebanon, as well as the group's expressed intention to destroy the state of Israel. Hamas, in Gaza, has the same objective. 

It's become easy for some to denounce the fence that partially separates the West Bank from Israel. Yet these same voices refuse to acknowledge that this fence has allowed Israelis to go out for pizza, to the movies, or to send their children on a school bus, without the constant fear of being blown up in a suicide attack.

Read more at The National Post

At The Christopher Hitchens/Tony Blair debate over the resolution "Religion is a force for good in the world"

The pre-debate survey indicated the majority of the crowd agreed with Hitchens' opposition of the resolution. Given the ample ammunition to support his position, Blair was on the defensive for most of the night in front of a crowd in liberal downtown Toronto. In fact, Blair spent a lot of time reiterating that while religion is responsible for a great deal of the world's ills, it does not mean that all people of faith are bad, or that faith in of itself need be an evil.

Blair acknowledged that the scriptures themselves are a source of a great deal of the evil perpetrated in the name of religion. It is a source of concern to him and one that requires great introspection from organized religion. As an analogy for the closed-mindedness of some religious people, Blair relayed how a Labour party member came up to him after an election loss and said, "We've had four elections and the public has voted against us four times. What's wrong with them?"

Speaking of closed minded people that don't get it, the single disappointment of the night for me was the imperceptible presence of James Clark's deceptively-named, "Toronto Coalition to Stop the War" who failed to turn out in noticeable numbers at an outdoor protest.

Read the whole thing at The Propagandist

UPDATE: Here's me beside Hitchens


Link to debate videos here.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Bob Rae on Canada's continuing role in Afghanistan

Eye on a Crazy Planet is a non-partisan Canadian blog insofar as it takes positions on issues rather than political parties. (OK, I don't consider the NDP or Greens to be real political parties).

Liberal Foreign Affairs Critic Bob Rae reminds us that the Liberals understand the need for the defense of liberal democracy.

"The terrorists do not have a timetable. The terrorists do not have resolutions that say this is what has to happen and this is the day we have to do this and we have to do that.

The terrorists have a different objective, and we need to understand that as a House. Canadians have to come to terms with the need for this continuing engagement; they have to come to terms with the need for us to stay involved and stay engaged, not at the expense of our own people, not at the expense of our democratic traditions and not at the expense of how we do business as a country, but as partners."

Read more at The National Post

The anti-Israel BDSM - It's a weird sex thing

The initials for the anti-Israel "Boycott, Divest and Sanction Movement" are BDSM.

Coincidence they share the same initials as this?  I doubt it.

It follows to reason that fanatics who hope to deligitimize Israel while siding with the sexists, homophobes and practitioners of torture in the Iranian theocracy, Hamas and Hezbollah have a lot in common with depraved masochists and sexual sadists.

Could this be where the inspiration for the ironically-named "Queers Against Israeli Apartheid" came from?




does this..
  

Look all that different from this?

Or this?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sharia/Marxist rag claims, "Tarek Fatah spreads fear and hatred on CBC"

The nutbars at The Canadian Charger, Mohammed "Elmo" Elmassry's home for 9-11 conspiracy crackpots and fanatical Islamists, have put out a little smear piece about Tarek Fatah.

I think they did it just to confirm what I wrote last week in The Propagandist:
"Liberal Muslims like Tarek Fatah have had to endure insult and ostracism from the conservative mainstream for trying to expose the problems that Islam faces as a result of the way the religion and culture is practiced, rather than blaming the West for self-inflicted woes."

Check it out at Fatah's facebook page here

Saturday, November 27, 2010

OISE's Jenny Peto in her own words. You judge

Jenny Peto seems to think that my mini-analysis of her thesis, titled:  "The Victimhood of the Powerful: White Jews, Zionism and the Racism of Hegemonic Holocaust Education" was unfair.

In this debate, who better to make the pro AND con arguments than Jenny Peto?

Jenny Peto, who is ethnically Jewish and says she isn't a Jew-hating polemicist:

"My thesis is not a Jew-hating conspiracy"*
                                           VS

Jenny Peto, the OISE Master's degree candidate (the following are just from the introduction to her thesis):

 "the organized Jewish community makes claims about Jewish victimhood that are widely accepted within that community and within popular discourse in the West. I propose that these claims to victimhood are no longer based in a reality of oppression, but continue to be propagated because a victimized Jewish identity can produce certain effects that are beneficial to the organized Jewish community and the Israeli nation-state" (Abstract - pg.ii) 
"the oppressive beliefs of my parents, teachers and religious leaders" (pg.2)
"I started to understand the violence that was necessary to establish the Israeli state and the violence required to maintain its existence as a Jewish-only state"** (pg.3) 
"becoming an anti-Zionist Jew can be extremely painful because it requires Jewish people to stop seeing themselves as victims and to accept that by supporting Israel, they are supporting a brutally oppressive regime"(pg.3) 
"As someone who had experienced violence and oppression within my own Jewish community, it was not very difficult for me to accept that Jews could be oppressors and by extension, that the so-called ‘Jewish state’ could itself be oppressive and violent" (pg.4) 
"a fight against all forms of oppression, including Zionism"***(pg.5)  
"Worldwide, the organized Jewish community works tirelessly to support the racist Israeli state and in doing so, aligns itself with oppressive forces in their own countries." (pg.6)  
"My research is therefore aimed at answering the question of how can we explain the existence of a tremendous educational apparatus dedicated to teaching about the history of Jewish suffering within a mainstream Jewish community that is dominated by racist and Zionist ideologies?" (pg.6) 
"Rather than asking the morally loaded question of why most Jewish people seem not to have learned from their history, I instead want to ask what are they learning from the history they are being taught? In other words, what are the effects of education projects that focus on Jewish victimhood? Given the privilege – and I would call this white privilege – now enjoyed by Jews of European descent, how and why has Jewish identity continued to revolve around victimhood? Who benefits from the construction of a victimized Jewish identity? " (pgs. 6-7) 
"Having shown that Ashkenazi Jews are now privileged white people, I will then work to expose some of the tactics that are used to perpetuate the idea that Jews are inherently and forever victimized. There are a wide range of tactics used to (re)produce the ‘Jew as victim’, but I am going to focus on hegemonic Holocaust education because I believe that the Holocaust is central to these claims of victimhood." (pg 8) 
"My work is based in the understanding that Zionism – the belief that Jewish people have a right to a nation-state built on top of the ruins of Palestine – is a racist, imperialist ideology that can only effectively be challenged through anti-racist, anti-imperialist theory and activism." (pg 10)



Debate result:  In my opinion, OISE and the University of Toronto still have a lot of 'splainin' to do.
     
                         ______________________________________


* Ms. Peto apparently fails to understand that I never wrote that her thesis is a conspiracy. I wrote that she alleges a conspiracy by Jews or to quote myself, which is something I seldom do, "One of the reasons that this matter is of concern to me is that the theses in question are not at their core simply critiques of Zionism, but their abstracts suggest a Jewish conspiracy" (The headline "Jew-hating Conspiracies 101" used in the National Post was catchy, but I can't take credit for it. That headline was written by the NP editor.)

** Ms. Peto misrepresents Israel as a "Jewish-only" state. While Israel is a Jewish state, the term "Jewish-only" suggests that only Judaism can be practiced there and that of course is blatantly false. All religions can be practiced without hindrance from the Israeli state and that includes Islam and Christianity. This is distinctly different from Islam-only states like Saudi Arabia, or states like Iran and Pakistan where religious minorities suffer the most extreme forms of persecution.

 *** the cultural dictionary definition of Zionism, which Peto characterizes as a racist form of oppression, is  "The belief that Jews should have their own nation; Jewish nationalism. Zionism gained much support among Jews and others in the early twentieth century, and the hoped-for nation was established in the late 1940s in Palestine, as the state of Israel. Zionism is opposed by most Arabs."  The Random House definition is "a worldwide Jewish movement that resulted in the establishment and development of the state of Israel."

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Man Booker winner Howard Jacobson on the "Ashamed" Jewish anti-Semites in the Boycott Israel Movement

For those say they can't be anti-Semitic because they are Jewish, Howard Jacobson, winner of literature's Man Booker Prize this year, eloquently and convincingly shows us that they are liars and fools.




Howard Jacobson:

The other thing that seemed worth saying related to that now classic formulation - "It is not anti-Semitic to be critical of Israel." I wasn't concerned to make the no less classical rebuttal - "Of course being critical of Israel doesn't necessarily mark you out as an anti-Semite, but it doesn't necessarily mark you out as not one either." Enough already with who is or who isn't. What I wanted to address was something different - how the glamour word "anti-Semite" has transfixed both parties to this semantic tussle, when the real issue is what we mean by "critical". 
Reader, only think about it: was ever a tiny word sent on such a mighty errand, or to put it another way, was ever such a massive job of demolition done by so delicate an instrument. Critical - as though those who accuse Israel of every known crime against humanity, of being more Nazi than the Nazis, more fascist than the fascists, more apartheid than apartheid South Africa, are simply exercising measured argument and fine discrimination.  
I know a bit about being critical. It's my job. Being "critical" is when you say that such-and-such a book works here but doesn't work there, good plot, bad characterisation, enjoyed some parts, hated others. What being critical is not, is saying this is the most evil and odious book ever written, worse than all other evil and odious books, should never have been published in the first place, was in fact published in flagrant defiance of international law, must be banned, and in the meantime should not under any circumstances be read. For that we need another word than critical.  
So try replacing it with whatever that word or words might be and have a look at how the statement bears up now. "It is not anti-Semitic to defame or curse or stigmatise or revile or execrate or anathematise or with malice aforethought misrepresent Israel." You might think that veers a touch too far in the opposite direction, but you take my point. Put back the inordinacy of reprehension hidden behind the pretend even-handedness of fair-seeming little "critical" and you see why those who oppose the boycott and other such traducements smell a rat.

How the The London Review of Books has functioned as an anti-Israel propaganda organ for the last 10 years

“A good dissection of the articles on the conflict that appeared in the LRB over the past decade. Many contributions are no more than pro-Arab propaganda. On the face of things, it would appear that sending taxpayers’ pounds their way is misguided if not downright hostile toward Israel – which is not British government policy.”

Benny Morris, professor of history in the Middle East Studies Department

at Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Israel

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


JUST JOURNALISM has conducted an in-depth study of The London Review of Books


INTRODUCTION

The London Review of Books (the LRB) has long been known as a publication virulently hostile to the State of Israel and Zionism. This report covers the ten years from 1 June 2000 to 31 May 2010, examining the fortnightly magazine’s reviews and essays on Israel-Palestine and exposing an entirely one-sided, fringe narrative, paid for by British taxpayers’ money via Arts Council funding. Despite Britain’s alliance with Israel, public money has been used to pay extreme opponents of Israel to pen articles demonising the Jewish state.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:

•A Freedom of Information request revealed that since its inception the LRB has received over £767,000 from Arts Council England, funded by the public purse

•Between 2000 and 2010, over £188,000 was received by the LRB specifically for the purpose of paying contributing writers. In this period 92 articles on Israel-Palestine were produced by contributors

•More than one third (36%) of articles were written by Jewish Israelis and more than half (53%) of all articles were written by people known to be Jewish. On only one occasion was a mainstream Jewish and Israeli perspective on the conflict showcased by this (or any) contingent

•The LRB consistently portrayed Israel as a bloodthirsty and genocidal regime out of all proportion to reality, while sympathetic portraits abounded of groups designated as terrorist organisations by the British government such as Hamas and Hezbollah

•While the Palestinian narrative was fully represented, Israel’s narrative on its legitimate security concerns, Arab rejectionism and terrorism was near absent

Read the entire report at Just Journalism here.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Melanie Phillips adds: 
"It is important because the LRB plays a key role in defining the terms of debate for the British intelligentsia, influencing beyond them the so-called thinking classes in the rest of the English-speaking world. For many years under its current editor Mary-Kay Wilmers – herself surely a prime example of Howard Jacobson’s ‘Ashamed Jews’ -- it has been helping turn that debate into a verbal pogrom against Israel through an unbroken stream of hate-fuelled articles."


h/t American Power and Blazing Cat Fur

He doesn't quite have his old man's gift for words

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Islam Needs Both Its Martin Luther And Its Martin Luther King

Last week The Propagandist’s Editor Jonathon Narvey wrote, “In the question of whether Islam is at war with the West, The Propagandist has always taken a consistent line: No. A religion cannot be at war with anything. We are not fighting Islam.”

In my first column for The Propagandist, I propose that Jonathon is incorrect.

Recently elected Congressman Allen West (R- Florida) pointed out that “The War on Terror” is a misnomer. Terror is a tactic, not an enemy. The analogy West used was that World War 2 was not a war on “Blitzkrieg,” it was a war against Nazis. West characterizes the current conflict as one with extremist Islam. I fear that Congressmen West’s characterization was too mild. Conservative Islam, which is the prevalent form of practiced Islam, is at war, not only with the west, but with liberal Muslims who seek change to their religion.
read the rest at The Propagandist

Billy Connolly is 68 !!??!!

Wow! I guess laughter really does keep you young!

Today is Billy Connolly's 68th Birthday. Thanks for the laughs, man and many, many happy returns!





Tuesday, November 23, 2010

University of Toronto offers weak response to concerns about institutional anti-Israel bias at OISE

The University of Toronto has responded, but not really responded, to concerns about a Master's Thesis submitted in the Sociology and Equity Studies in Education program at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) by one Jenny Peto, that alleges "Jewish Racism" is part of "Hegemonic Holocaust Education" and suggests a Jewish/Zionist conspiracy to exploit Holocaust guilt.

According to the Canadian Jewish News:

Responding to a request for an interview, the University of Toronto issued a written statement by vice-president and provost Cheryl Misak: “Due to our privacy obligations to students, I cannot discuss an individual student’s academic work or his or her performance. What I can, say, however, is that freedom of expression issues are ever-present in our society, especially on a university campus. The University of Toronto’s Statement on Freedom of Speech makes it clear that freedom of inquiry lies at the very heart of our institution: ‘all members of the University must have as a prerequisite freedom of speech and expression, which means the right to examine, question, investigate, speculate and comment on any issue without reference to prescribed doctrine, as well as the right to criticize the University and society at large.’ 
“Of the thousands of MA theses written at the University of Toronto in partial fulfilment of degree requirements, it is inevitable that some will have elements that offend various individuals and groups."
It is commendable that the University of Toronto values free speech. But there are issues that remain unaddressed, like the perception that the culture at OISE has become so virulently anti-Israel and anti-Zionist that theses which have the appearance of anti-Semitism have become acceptable there.

And there is the question of whether the anti-Israel attitude at OISE has become so politically rancid that anti-Zionism has become more important there than basic scholarship.


Werner Cohn, Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of British Columbia, and one of the first people to draw attention to the thesis, The Victimhood of the Powerful: White Jews, Zionism and the Racism of Hegemonic Holocaust Education" wrote of the author's scholarship:

"..she is an autodidact who knows how to quote from others, whenever that seems to serve the cause, and thus to give her thesis the sheen of formal scholarship.The only problem is that the footnotes and references to the literature in no way support her contentions, and that she does not muster facts or data of any kind to give her thesis the weight of an academic argument."

"..she makes assertions, but it can’t be called an advancement of knowledge as she doesn’t test it in any way."

Ms Peto's thesis characterized the March of the Living, a prestigious Holocaust education program, as an "abuse of Holocaust memory for Zionist and racist purposes" (pg 108).


An indictment of Ms Peto comes from March of the Living national director Eli Rubenstein. “She hasn’t been on a trip where you see a Holocaust survivor holding the hand of someone who survived the Rwandan genocide or the Sudanese genocide, that it’s comforting and helps them to heal.

“How can you write a master’s thesis and not speak to a single survivor, educator or student in the program, and how can the university accept that?” he asked.

“We have survivors who rebuilt their lives and want to share their stories of survival and make sure that it doesn’t happen to anybody, and here you have someone criticizing us for that… it’s very sad.”

In fact, the only first hand research on the March of the Living Ms Peto is able to cite in her 2010 Thesis comes from her viewing of the March of the Living website in 2006!

This addresses Professor Cohn's principle concern by critics of the thesis and by extension, the culture at OISE in the assertion that "the thesis was devoid of scholarship."

U of T Provost Misak said,  "the university is committed to allowing and encouraging a full range of debate. The best way for controversy to unfold is for members of our community to engage with the perspectives and arguments they dispute. It is intelligent argument, not censorship, that lies at the heart of our democratic society and its institutions.

These are commendable sentiments. But the question remains, where is the debate at OISE?

At a meeting of the OISE Graduate Student Association to discuss whether they should involve themselves with  the bigoted "Israeli Apartheid Week," the minutes don't indicate any debate. They indicate a universal acceptance of the notion that the Zionist entity must be oppressive. The only expressed concern is about how to imply that they are not anti-Semitic.

And who is the person they had to address that concern?

None other than guest speaker Jenny Peto! Well, with expert advice like that, how could they go wrong?

Ms Peto's thesis advisor is Sheryl Nestel. Ms Nestel has made the conference presentation: "Mapping Jewish Dissent: Jewish Anti-occupation Activism in Toronto." The Department Chair, Rinaldo Walcott, is a signatory to at least two anti-Israel petitions.

Where is the debate at OISE?

For U of T Provost Misak to say that the “university is committed to allowing and encouraging a full range of debate” is most welcome. Perhaps she can let us know when that policy is put into practice at OISE.

Today is Boris Karloff's Birthday

One of the legends from the annals of horror


Obama's impotence

An open disagreement between Israel and the Pentagon in recent weeks has highlighted the dilemma President Barack Obama faces in making progress on Iran. Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Tuesday poured cold water on last week's suggestion by Israeli Prime Minister that the only way Iran can be stopped from acquiring nuclear weapons is for the U.S. to threaten military action. Military action, Gates warned, would solve nothing; in fact it would be more likely to drive Iran to acquire nuclear weapons.

Netanyahu had warned, during a visit to the U.S., that "economic sanctions are making it difficult for Iran, but there is no sign that the Ayatullah regime plans to stop its nuclear program because of them." The Israeli media reported that Netanyahu had told Vice-President Joe Biden, "The only way to ensure that Iran will not go nuclear is to create a credible threat of military action against it if it doesn't cease its race for a nuclear weapon."

More at Time

Fascist uniform then..Fascist uniform now

The story of Jesus - told by the brilliant John Turturro

One of cinema's most memorable brief performances and the story behind it





Monday, November 22, 2010

Evidence points to Iran/Syria backed Hezbollah as murderers of former Lebanese Prime Minister

The fuhrer of terror-group Hezbollah, Hassan Nassrallah, made the laughable allegation that Israel, for no apparent reason, was behind the assassination that he evidently gave his consent to or ordered.

CBC News has learned that:

•Evidence gathered by Lebanese police and, much later, the UN, points overwhelmingly to the fact that the assassins were from Hezbollah, the militant Party of God that is largely sponsored by Syria and Iran. CBC News has obtained cellphone and other telecommunications evidence that is at the core of the case.

•UN investigators came to believe their inquiry was penetrated early by Hezbollah and that that the commission's lax security likely led to the murder of a young, dedicated Lebanese policeman who had largely cracked the case on his own and was co-operating with the international inquiry.

•UN commission insiders also suspected Hariri's own chief of protocol at the time, a man who now heads Lebanon's intelligence service, of colluding with Hezbollah. But those suspicions, laid out in an extensive internal memo, were not pursued, basically for diplomatic reasons.

Read the rest at cbc.ca

Roxana Saberi: My Life and Captivity in Iran

The anniversary of TV's first interracial kiss

Like much great science fiction, Star Trek was often also social allegory. It predicted science and influenced  generations of scientists, in effect becoming self-fulfilling prophesy.

In 1968, television networks were afraid to depict interracial relationships. The very first time a kiss between a white and black person happened on a TV show was on Star Trek, who in this case certainly did boldly go where no TV show had gone before. In the episode in question, Captain Kirk and Lieutenant Uhura were compelled to kiss by the telekinetic powers of aliens.

Today is the anniversary of the day that kiss was broadcast.

Nichelle Nichols, who played Lt. Uhura, was incredibly hot back then. If I were Captain Kirk, I would have sent a thank you note to the aliens.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

That's some menorah!

Blazing Cat Fur: JDL Chanukah Party To Support Blazingcatfur

A classic treat: Paddle to the Sea

A classic great from the National Film Board of Canada

Is Ontario Minister of Citizenship Eric Hoskins as clueless as he appears in this video?

Below is a video of Steve Clark, the MPP for Leeds-Grenville, asking Ontario Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Eric Hoskins, why Ontario is pursuing increased relations with Syria, a terror-supporting dictatorship.


Hoskin's non-sequitur response is to praise the Syrian-Canadian community, obfuscate, and avoid answering the question.

What?!

No one has an issue with the majority of Syrian-Canadians, who are fine citizens who came to Canada to escape from a totalitarian regime that Hoskins seemingly wants to embrace.

But the question was why is Ontario possibly moving towards increased relations with a terror-supporting state that was behind the murder of a Lebanese Prime Minister?

As much as I have issue with his introduction of the HST and his less-than-vigorous approach to keeping campaign promises, Dalton McGuinty's government has an excellent relationship with Israel, so I have no concerns the provincial Liberal leadership has gone over to The Dark Side in that regard.

Hoskins is new on the job, having won his seat in a bi-election in the provincial riding vacated by McGuinty-rival Michael Bryant, prior to the unfortunate incident where he killed an enraged bicyclist in self-defense.

Judging from what I see here, it makes me wonder whether Hoskins was put into cabinet way, way too soon, or if he should be there at all.



Saturday, November 20, 2010

Regressive billionaire George Soros says it may be time to stop supporting Obama

According to The Huffington Post, regressive billionaire George Soros "voiced blunt criticism of the Obama administration, going so far as to suggest that Democratic donors direct their support somewhere other than the president.

The Hungarian-American financier was speaking to a small side gathering of donors who had convened in Washington D.C. for the annual gathering of the Democracy Alliance -- a formal community of well-funded, progressive-minded individuals and activists.

According to multiple sources with knowledge of his remarks, Soros told those in attendance that he is "used to fighting losing battles but doesn't like to lose without fighting."

"We have just lost this election, we need to draw a line," he said, according to several Democratic sources. "And if this president can't do what we need, it is time to start looking somewhere else."

Read the rest here at The Huffington Post 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Ezra Levant loses libel case to Giacomo "Serenity Now" Vigna

Ezra Levant was sued for libel and defamation for calling Human Rights Commission lawyer Giacomo Vigna a "fibber" when Vigna claimed he needed an adjournment before a Human Rights Commission hearing because he wasn't feeling "serene."

The judge ruled that Vigna was defamed because there was no proof Vigna was lying, or "fibbing" when he made the claim.

Vigma also claimed "defamation" for mocking comments Levant made about Vigna, referring to him as "Serenity Now" Vigna and comparing him to George Costanza's father on Seinfeld.

The judge ruled that while the comments were mocking, they were not defamatory.

So do NOT call "Serenity Now" Vigna a fibber. He isn't a fibber, he just wasn't serene.





Hamas-supporting Galloway fans plan insult to Jewish community

As if the Toronto presence of Gerorge Galloway, the supporter of Hamas terror, wasn't enough of an insult to the local Jewish community, his fanatical supporters have decided that the best place in all of downtown to assemble is right beside the Jewish Community Centre.

Galloway is going to speak at the Islamic Society of York Region tomorrow at 5:30 and his supporters who are travelling from downtown have been told:
"Assemble at 720 Spadina Avenue (west side of Spadina, south of Bloor) at 4:30 p.m.
Bus will depart downtown Toronto at 4:45 p.m. Bus will return to same location at 10:00 p.m."
That address is on the same block and only about a dozen yards south of the Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre at Bloor and Spadina. Of all the places in the many square miles of downtown Toronto, they chose the same block as the largest Jewish centre in the old city of Toronto.

The insulting selection of assembly point re-inforces the idea that Galloway's supporters are not just opposed to the idea of Israel, but want to seek every opportunity  to insult as many Jews as they can.

Professor Werner Cohn: Prolegomena to the Study of Jews who hate Israel - Not to Weep or to Laugh, but to Understand

Professor Cohn is Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of British Columbia

"Broadly speaking, Jews who hate Israel fall into three categories: a) the famous, of which Noam Chomsky is about the only one; b) the well-known, like Norman Finkelstein and Tony Judt, and c) others who are not known beyond their immediate circles but who do lurk in various crevices of the Internet. Altogether, as I will explain below, it is not likely that there are more than a few thousand of these haters active worldwide, say fewer than 10,000 and probably no more than half that number. Considering that there are more than 13 million Jews in the world at the moment, the proportion of those who actively hate Israel, about 0.04 of one percent, might well be considered to be modest indeed. "
In Canada, we have one or two in the locally "well-known" category, such as non-credible players like Naomi Klein and her husband, what's-his-name, and Judy Rebick.

For more about this very interesting look at a sad phenomenon, read Professor Cohn's entire piece here.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

97.38% of North Americans don't know today is George Gallup's Birthday

Okay, I just made that figure up, but it wouldn't surprise me if the number was even higher.

George Gallup (November 18, 1901 – July 26, 1984) was an American pioneer of survey sampling techniques and inventor of the Gallup poll, a successful statistical method of survey sampling for measuring public opinion.


More info about Gallup here.

Marxist/Islamo-fascist alliance to attempt to disrupt the Blair-Hitchens debate

Canada's supporters of terror are upset that Saddam Hussein is no longer in power in Iraq, murdering Kurds by the tens of thousands, having prisons being used as sex-slave dungeons for his friends and private army, playing cat and mouse with the US and British Air Forces in the no-fly zone, and trying to acquire more and more dangerous means of posing a threat to the world.

These people support terror groups like Hamas and Hezbollah and want to enact policies that would give the Taliban a free rein to repress women in Afghanistan while hiding behind deceptive names like "Toronto Coalition to Stop the War." Their idea of "stopping the war" apparently is a combination of surrender to al Qaida and launching missiles at Israeli civilians.

And they're really, really mad at Tony Blair because he's one of the guys responsible for there being one less bastion of terrorism in the world in Iraq. So they plan to protest his appearance at the Munk Debate in Toronto next week where Blair will be debating Christopher Hitchens on the resolution "religion is a force for good in the world".

Some of them think they might get close enough to actually lay hands on Blair to make a citizen's arrest for "war crimes." According to their facebook group, they even consider Hitchens an accessory to "war crimes" for "humanizing" the Iraq war.

Psychiatric assessments aside, these people are not only deluded but potentially dangerous, and I hope security is tight at the event.

It's too bad things have come to this, but there are a lot of nuts in the world.

Featured comment from reader Hortensio: "A debate between Hitchens and Blair must be particularly insulting to them, seeing the anti-Galloway and the toppler of Saddam sharing the same stage. Hitchens once said of this sort of faux pacifist that they aren't anti-war, but pro-war for the other side. They probably haven't got over the stinging accuracy of that comment yet."

UPDATE: "Toronto Coalition to Stop the War" isn't a very accurate description of James Clark's supporters of anti-western terrorists and warmongers. Feel free to post your suggestions for a better name in the comments section.

"Coalition to stop the war unless it kills Canadians, Americans, Brits and Jews"  is more accurate but less catchy. Let's see what we can come up with.

Bob Woodward discusses Iraq, Afghanistan, Bush and journalism

Bob Woodward discusses the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Bush presidency and the state of contemporary journalism with Justine Rosenthal of The National Interest

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

York University Prez Mamdouche Shoukri Attacks Rabbi Hoch

From blogger Blazing Cat Fur: York University Prez Mamdouche Shoukri Attacks Rabbi Hoch

It's Gordo's Birthday!!!

Today's Gordon Lightfoot's Birthday.

Here's to the man Eye on a Crazy Planet readers voted as one of the two best Canadian musical acts ever!




And as an extra treat, the SCTV spoof, "Gordon Lightfoot sings every song ever written":

Skippy Stalin on Olbermann, Koppel & the Death of News

A good post from Skippy

Police thuggery?

Most police are good guys doing a tough job.

If this report is accurate, the Ottawa P.D. is doing itself and its reputation a huge disservice by allowing these perpetrators to keep their badges:



Two years ago a young woman named Stacy Bonds was walking along an Ottawa sidewalk on her way to a friend’s house. Bonds is 27, just five feet tall, weighs barely 100 pounds. She’s not a trouble-maker, has no criminal history, no record of causing problems for police. She had — horrors — enjoyed a few drinks, though a judge ruled later that she was not drunk. Two police officers stopped her, checked her out, discovered she was harmless and told her to be on her way. She took a few steps, then stopped and asked them why they’d stopped her in the first place. 
That got her handcuffed, thrown in the back of a cruiser and spirited off to the police station, where police pulled her hair, kneed her in the back a couple of times, slammed her to the ground with a riot shield, cut off her clothes and bra while a few male officers watched, and strip-searched her.
That done, they threw her in a cell, half-naked, for three hours. They charged her with public drunkenness — though she wasn’t — and with aggressive behaviour, though a video showed that wasn’t true either. 
Now, how big a moron do you have to be to pull a stunt like this?
The rest is here at The National Post

Why the "Progressive" movement is actually a "Regressive" movement

Don't let socialists get away with calling themselves "progressive." They are anything but that.

The "Progressive" movement never really was about progress. Not in the way most people in a liberal democracy would define social progress. They have a vision of a socialist, non-racist society, which they undermine at every turn by defining everything in terms of race. And despite their claims to the desire of a society without class differentiation, they believe very religiously in class. The class of the ruling and the ruled. And guess which class they aspire to?

What is progress?

Technological progress is very easily defined. While there may be negative environmental ramifications to some technologies, innovations which improve the speed and efficiency of performing tasks qualify. Why is it that capitalist societies have always been more advanced and produced more technological innovations than non-capitalist ones?

Simple.

Less government interference and more incentive for individual creativity.

But that doesn't line up with a "Progressive" socialist world-view which implicitly creates disincentives for individual achievement in the form of fewer rewards for more work than a capitalist culture. So as far as technology goes, "progressives" are actually regressive.

What about social policy?

In an ideal world, all people would be treated and thought of as equal regardless of their skin color, race, or ethnicity. In our world, the people who are arguing for racial preference, who are suggesting racial conspiracies and ethnic guilt are none other than the "progressives."

Judging a person on the basis of race, whatever your motive, is racism. Racism is regressive behavior.

Which leads to cultural relativism and equivalence - the ideas that all cultures are equal.

Some cultures suppress women's rights. Some cultures persecute Gays and minorities. Some cultures do not allow press freedom and some will execute you for blasphemy.

These are all manifestations that a liberal democracy would consider backward. But cultural relativists say that those cultures are equal to ours.

Who are the cultural relativists in our society?  You guessed it. The self described "progressives".

Lots of self-described "progressives" are adherents of Marxism. Yup, the same Marxism that is responsible for millions of deaths under Lenin, Stalin, Mao, and the repression of free speech and civil rights in the Soviet Union, Cuba, North Korea, and more.

So the next time one of these buffoons tries to call themselves a "progressive," consider reminding them: "No. You're not progressive.  You're a follower of a regressive socialist ideology. The rest of us have already progressed beyond you."

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Assassin's Creed Brotherhood hits the shevles today

The two predecessor games were fantastic in detail, graphics and play. The new one promises to be even better

An addendum to yesterday's post on academic Jew hate

Yesterday's post regarding OISE has got a fair bit of attention due to its being picked up by The National Post, so there are some points I'd like to add.

Regarding academic freedom. It may seem paradoxical to follow up a post that was highly critical of the premises of two theses based on their abstracts with a post insisting on the right to academic freedom, but I'm going to do that nonetheless.

Because my concern was not based on a desire to censor Ms Peto's or Mr Epstein's positions or their right to hold or write them. Let me make this explicitly clear. They have every right to do so, just as those who disagree have the right to criticize them.

But those premises, as far as I inferred from the abstracts, suggested that Jews bore some special moral guilt on the basis of ethnicity, or responsibility on the basis of pigmentation and there was an organized community effort to mislead and manipulate and those are suggestions that I feel merit the most extreme criticism.

They have the right to their opinions.

But it seems to me that the natural extension of their ideas is that a particular race can be either inferior or  superior, that some races merit special privilege or punishment. These are ideas that most of us in liberal democracies have hoped were abandoned a long time ago. If these ideas can be applied to Jews, they can be applied, in some form, to anyone. And one doesn't have to look too far in history to see where that kind of thinking leads.

But again, my concern is not about the ideas of two or three individuals whose ideas, I don't think, merit great consideration. My concern is what appears to me to be a pervasive attitude at OISE and to some extent at the University of Toronto. It is an outgrowth of an academic anti-Zionism that is at its substance exactly what the Prime Minister of Canada warned against at the international conference on anti-Semistism last week.

It is the way that this form of racism has insinuated itself into some academic institutions that needs to be examined and exposed.

When fanatical anti-Zionism extends to Jews in general and the notion of collective Jewish guilt, it is something that should be alarming to any thinking person.

OISE has played host to conferences whose purpose was the boycotting and sanctioning of Israel, part of the campaign to assign the false label of "apartheid" and, in effect, the deligitimization of that country.

The Prime Minister, the leader of the Opposition, federal ministers and civic leaders of all stripes have spoken out against that in the most forceful terms and have suggested it is a new form of anti-Semitism.

Is it?

Zionism is the belief that Jews should have a homeland in Israel. If the anti-Zionists were against the idea of any people having a national homeland with a religious component, and put equal energies into the condemnation of all, then their standing would have more credibility. But I am yet to find an "anti-Zionist" call for the end of the Islamic republics of Iran and Pakistan and the Islamic rule in other countries where religion and state are not distinct. The call for an end to such systems throughout the world is in no way significant among the anti-Zionist movement. The focus in those cases on one people and one religion appears to me to be highly suggestive of bigotry.

It is this and the anti-Israel politicization of academic programs that I believe requires serious examination.

UPDATE: let me reiterate this to anyone who thinks this post is a "softening" of my position. It isn't. The theses in question are repugnant in their respective suggestions that Jews are conspiring to exploit Holocaust guilt for ulterior motives and that anyone bears some sort of "accountability through genealogy."

But what I also want to make abundantly clear is that these theses are being used as examples of a greater problem. Presumably they were approved by a thesis committee at OISE. It is the institutional politicization and bias that is concerning, not individuals of questionable significance. That is always what the issue has been, for those who missed the point.

Monday, November 15, 2010

The University of Toronto's Department of Jew Hate and Psychobabble

The spread of anti-Semitism on Canadian university campuses is an alarming and obvious phenomenon. The University of Toronto is making a shocking contribution to the spread of hate. It is the birthplace of the odious so-called "Israel Apartheid Week" which has best been described as, "the week in which the Western campus Hitlerjugend, Marxist-Leninists, and Islamo-fascists unite to demonstrate against and call for the destruction of the only Middle East country that is NOT an apartheid regime."

The Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) is the home of some of the most appalling of The University of Toronto's extremist radicals. It's no coincidence that OISE, the home of suspect programs of dubious academic value like 'Diversity Studies', is host to a number of anti-Israel lectures during the bigotfest of "Israeli Apartheid Week."

But to what extent has Jew hate permeated the academic programs at University of Toronto? Judging by some of the theses that are being granted a form of legitimacy, alarm bells should be going off and an investigation may be merited.

Take a look at two theses being guided at OISE's Department of Sociology and Equity Studies. One is a Master's Thesis from a Jenny Peto, one of the individuals behind the self-described "Queers Against Israeli Apartheid."

Her Master's thesis is titled, "The Victimhood of the Powerful: White Jews, Zionism and the Racism of Hegemonic Holocaust Education"

She describes her thesis in the following terms:


This paper focuses on issues of Jewish identity, whiteness and victimhood within hegemonic Holocaust education. I argue that today, Jewish people of European descent enjoy white privilege and are among the most socio-economically advantaged groups in the West. Despite this privilege, the organized Jewish community makes claims about Jewish victimhood that are widely accepted within that community and within popular discourse in the West. I propose that these claims to victimhood are no longer based in a reality of oppression, but continue to be propagated because a victimized Jewish identity can produce certain effects that are beneficial to the organized Jewish community and the Israeli nation-state. I focus on two related Holocaust education projects – the March of the Living and the March of Remembrance and Hope – to show how Jewish victimhood is instrumentalized in ways that obscure Jewish privilege, deny Jewish racism and promote the interests of the Israeli nation-state.


Why is Ms. Peto, who ostensibly is concerned about "Jewish racism," discounting the many Jews, both Israeli and not, who are not "white" but are of varied backgrounds other than European who are also part of the "organized Jewish community"? Does she think they don't count, just because they aren't "white"?

Let's take a closer look at part of her thesis:

"Jewish people of European descent enjoy white privilege and are among the most socio-economically advantaged groups in the West. Despite this privilege, the organized Jewish community makes claims about Jewish victimhood"

In other words, the rich Jews who control the world are pretending to be victims. If Ms Peto were a little more insightful, she might realize that the "organized Jewish community" is ensuring that the dangers of anti-Semitism are not ignored, which is somewhat different from claiming "victimhood."  The fact that anti-Semitic crimes are by far the greatest type of religious-based hate crime around and are on the increase doesn't seem to have permeated Ms. Peto's obviously limited grasp of things. Anti-Jewish crimes number about 10 times the amount of anti-Muslim crimes. And those statistics aren't from B'nai Brith but the FBI.

Ms. Peto's academic advisor for her thesis is one Sheryl Nestel. Let's see if Ms Nestel has any other interesting thesis that she's "advising."

Yep! She does!

Here's one from a Griffin Epstein. It's called, "Extension: Towards a Genealogical Accountability: (The Critical [E]Race[ing] of Mad Jewish Identity" (author's parentheticals - ed.) and is described as:

Can we be accountable to privilege? Can we find a space for coherent anti-racist secular Ashkenazi Jewish identity in North America, where Jews have been deeply implicated in structural violence? Can we be agents of both complicity and change? This auto-ethnography describes a haunting; focusing on the ghostly presences of my deceased uncle Larry Treiman and Bruno Bettelheim, child psychologist and director of the residential treatment facility where Larry was institutionalized as a child, it creates a deeply personal explanation for how the whitening of Ashkenazi North American Jewish identity, the shifts in discourses of madness and major sociological and economic change in Chicago and New York over the second half of the 20th century constituted my subjectivity and my privilege. This text proposes accountability through genealogy, teasing out the possibility for ethical thought and action through cultivating a deeply personal relationship to the ghosts that make us.


Now this is very interesting. "This text proposes accountability through genealogy." Epstein seems to be arguing that Jews somehow bear a kind of 'race guilt' as if being Jewish is of itself a crime. There are precedents for this kind of thought. The Spanish Inquisition comes immediately to mind, and so does Hitler's Germany.

I particularly liked Epstein's description, "This auto-ethnography describes a haunting; focusing on the ghostly presences of my deceased uncle Larry Treiman and Bruno Bettelheim"

Well, if the ghosts are telling Epstein this is what's going on, it must be true. I'm surprised they're not listed as academic advisors along with Ms Nestel. Perhaps Epstein will do the right thing and list them as co-authors. Maybe the ghosts are the ones that said "Jews have been deeply implicated in structural violence ."  As to what other issues Epstein may or may not have, I can only speculate.

What's really alarming is that this is what passes for academic discourse at OISE. 

And what is shocking to me is that one of the courses that Sheryl Nestel taught at OISE is "Jews, Identity, and Difference". Maybe someone figures that academic Jew hate is okay as long as it's coming from someone who identifies as a Jew. It isn't.

What is happening at the University of Toronto and OISE needs to be exposed and investigated.

Here is the email address of John Milloy, the Ontario Minister of Colleges and Universities:

jmilloy.mpp.co@liberal.ola.org

Let him know what you think.

UPDATE: An addendum

UPDATE 2:  Today, I spoke to a director of The March of The Living , one of the organized events Ms Peto claims perpetuates  "how Jewish victimhood is instrumentalized in ways that obscure Jewish privilege, deny Jewish racism and promote the interests of the Israeli nation-state." and comprises a third of her Master's paper. According to him, he has no knowledge of Ms Peto having ever participated in The March of the Living, nor interviewing a single one of its staff or directors or participants. The only first hand research of The March of the Living Ms Peto references in her paper is from its website.


What that says about academic standards at OISE's sociology program is self-explanatory.

Professor Werner Cohn, Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of British Columbia, had a very interesting analysis of the quality of Ms Peto's and by extension, OISE's Sociology Department's academic research standards.

If this is a matter of concern to you, in addition to Mr. Milloy, you should copy Tim Hudak, the leader of the provincial opposition at: tim.hudakco@pc.ola.org and Jim Wilson, the Critic for the Ministry of Colleges and Universities at jim.wilson@pc.ola.org

UPDATE 3: David Hornik at Pajamas Media did an interesting deconstruction of Peto's "thesis" today (Nov. 19) in a front page piece called, "U. of Toronto Posts Anti-Semitic Tripe"

UPDATE 4: Nov. 23- U of Toronto's weak response and more on the culture of bias at OISE

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Atheist Palestinian Blogger arrested by Palestinian Authority for heresy - Radical Leftists have mental meltdown trying to figure out how to blame Israel

From the Canadian Press:
QALQILYAH, Palestinian Territories — A mysterious blogger who set off an uproar in the Arab world by claiming he was God and hurling insults at the Prophet Muhammad is now behind bars — caught in a sting that used Facebook to track him down.

The case of the unlikely apostate, a shy barber from this backwater West Bank town, is highlighting the limits of tolerance in the Western-backed Palestinian Authority — and illustrating a new trend by authorities in the Arab world to mine social media for evidence.

Residents of Qalqiliya say they had no idea that Walid Husayin — the 26-year-old son of a Muslim scholar — was leading a double life.

Known as a quiet man who prayed with his family each Friday and spent his evenings working in his father's barbershop, Husayin was secretly his anti-religious opinions on the Internet during his free time.

The media in the Palestinian Authority, as in the Arab world in general, are largely government-controlled, driving dissenting voices to the relative freedom of the Internet. The blogger's arrest showed a willingness on the part of the Palestinian government to clamp down on freedom of speech on the Web as well. He now faces a potential life prison sentence on heresy charges for "insulting the divine essence."
You can read the rest of the story here.

And for a laugh, read the discussion thread at rabble.ca, the online clearing house for neo-Marxist nitwits, as they have a meltdown trying to figure out a way to condemn this without breaking solidarity with the anti-Zionist struggle.

Happy Birthday Wendy Carlos

Wendy (nee Walter) Carlos is the genius performer and composer who developed the Moog synthesiser with Dr. Robert Moog.

She is responsible for the groundbreaking Switched-on Bach and was one of Stanley Kubrick's favorites, using Walter's music in A Clockwork Orange and after Carlos' sex change operation, as Wendy she did the Music for The Shining.

Today is Wendy Carlos' birthday. Thanks for the wonderful music you've given us and many happy returns!



Saturday, November 13, 2010

Something you need to see

Melanie Phillips discusses among other things, the threat of extremist Islam to western civilization and how their enablers, the ideologues of the secular radical left, have adopted attitudes and tactics that mimic the fanaticism of Joseph McCarthy.










h/t Blazing Cat Fur

Friday, November 12, 2010

Win front row tickets to see Christopher Hitchens debate Tony Blair on November 26

The semi-annual Munk Debates series is featuring its most high profile event ever.

On Friday, November 26, Tony Blair and Christopher Hitchens will be debating the proposition,

"Be it resolved, religion is a force for good in the world."


I'm sure you can guess who is taking the pro and who the con.

This event, which will occur at Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto, was sold out immediately upon becoming available and tickets are very, very highly sought after.

But you and a friend could end up in the front row. If you have a friend (or enemy) with whom you want to debate the same proposition, go to the Munk Debates website and you can create your own head-to-head debate using the website's technology.

Each week, between now and November 25, one debate will be selected to win front row seats to the Blair/Hitchens debate. You can enter the contest through this link.