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Saturday, May 20, 2017

Today in Cultural Appropriation - Gay porn studio under fire for using a didgeridoo as a dildo

Quote: 'I'm gonna didgeridoo you in the ass'

A gay porn studio is being called disrespectful after using a didgeridoo as a dildo in a new scene.

Entitled ‘Didgeridoo Me’ (because of course it is), the Men.com scene sees two roommates with one having recently gotten back from Australia.

While they do not go into detail of the frustrations of getting it through customs, his playing wakes his roommate up.

Frustrated, his roommate decides to take out his frustration by penetrating his roommate with the instrument.

The porn company is now being accused or racism, disrespect to the Australian Aboriginal community, and for being culturally offensive...

Venezuela’s collapse and the ‘useful idiots’ of the Canadian left

One political curse from the twentieth century that continues in this one is the praise from self-described progressives for demagogues whose policies can, in advance, be predicted to hurt the poor and destroy their freedoms.
Such “useful idiots,” as Lenin described them, were thick on the ground in the last century. Walter Duranty, a New York Times reporter, covered the Soviet Union in the 1930s and parroted the official line about Stalin’s agricultural “reforms”. Duranty wrote his dispatches just as millions were dying from Stalin’s forced collectivization in Ukraine.
In Canada, the best example of left-wing praise for poverty-creating regimes was Pierre Trudeau. He lauded multiple communist governments—the Soviet Union, Mao’s China’s and Castro’s Cuba—before, during, and after his time as prime minister.
The curse continues. Recall radical praise for the late Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan autocrat who died in 2013 and whose anti-entrepreneur policies and attacks on civil society were obvious from the start. His destructive policies are again relevant given current Venezuelan protests against his successor, Nicola Maduro, and the government-induced poverty and repression which stem from Chavez-era policies aped by Maduro.
To wit: In 2004, Linda McQuaig glowed in her picture with and praise for Chavez. Arguing he redirected “vast sums of national wealth to the swollen ranks of Venezuela’s poor” McQuaig mourned his passing in 2013. She called it a “sad milestone.” Likewise, Naomi Klein wrote of how Chavez left behind “the most democratic country in the Western hemisphere.”   One current Alberta NDP MLA, Rod Loyola, pre-politics, praised Chavez. And in 2013, Loyola was listed by the Marxist Leninist Daily as the media contact for an Edmonton “tribute to Chavez”...

Friday, May 19, 2017

The Penis Is A Social Construct - Peter Boghossian pulls a Sokal Hoax on the Academic Farce That Is Gender Studies

It’s been 21 years since physicist Alan Sokal submitted a bogus paper to a special “Science Wars” issue of the cultural studies journal Social Text. His paper, “Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity“, maintained that quantum gravity was a social construct, using many bizarre quotes from postmodern scholars to make its case. Almost immediately after the paper was published, Sokal revealed it was a hoax in an article in Lingua Franca.

The “Sokal Affair” inspired a lot of debate, as well as accusations that Sokal himself was unethical in submitting the paper, but I thought it made its point superbly: much of the social sciences and “culture studies” in academia is intellectually vacuous—a repository for dumb ideas couched in bad prose.

Now we have another hoax: a piece on the “conceptual penis” published in the journal Cogent Social Sciences, self described as “a multidisciplinary open access journal offering high quality peer review across the social sciences: from law to sociology, politics to geography, and sport to communication studies. Connect your research with a global audience for maximum readership and impact.”

Here’s the article;(though it will probably be removed very quickly!). The paper has, however, been archived, and you can find it here.

Andrew Lawton: Is cultural appropriation an act of theft or artistic literary exploration?

Two Canadian magazine editors have resigned and a television producer has been reassigned after defending the right of authors and other artists to take inspiration from cultures different than their own.

The phenomenon in question is called cultural appropriation: Inherent in the name is the implication that the act is theft, rather than a literary exploration of a world beyond the writer’s own.

Toronto painter Amanda PL was quite open about her work taking inspiration in both style and subject matter from an Anishnaabe artist. She was honouring that artist, not plagiarizing. But that didn’t stop the Visions Gallery from cancelling the event, capitulating to the mob of people accusing the artist of racism and colonialism.

And then came Hal Niedzviecki, the editor of Write — the magazine of the Writers’ Union of Canada (TWUC) — who contended that authors should be not only be allowed, but encouraged, to craft characters across the spectrum of cultures.

“In my opinion, anyone, anywhere, should be encouraged to imagine other peoples, other cultures, other identities,” he said in the editor’s note, for which TWUC has since apologized.

The union apologized for the hurt caused by the piece, and rather ironically said the magazine aims to be “sincerely encouraging to all voices.” Except in apologizing for Niedzviecki’s piece, the union is in effect saying not all voices are welcome...

New ‘Social Justice’ Math Class Teaches Kids That Math Is Evil, Dehumanizing

Millions of K-12 students across the country believe that mathematics is a sadistic discipline—(I should know, I was one of them)—but a new "social justice" training module aims to persuade teachers that maybe the kids are on to something.
The course was designed by Teach for America and is offered through EdX, according to Campus Reform. It presupposes that math could be made more interesting for students if it was infused with socially relevant themes. That's not a terrible assumption—maybe young people would like math better if it was being taught in a language they understood. (If Olivia eats 10 pieces of avocado toast every day, how long will it be until she can afford to move out of her parent's house? That sort of thing.)
But Teach for America thinks that language is "social justice," and has designed a course that makes some startling claims about math.
"In western mathematics, our ways of knowing include formalized reasoning or proof, decontextualization, and algorithmic thinking, leaving little room for those having non-western mathematical skills and thinking processes," the training course claims.
It continues:

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Maxime Bernier: Two Threats to Freedom of Speech: M-103 and C-16

Although they were presented by their supporters as measures to protect minorities from discrimination, a motion and a bill being debated in Parliament could seriously threaten free speech in our country. Having received many requests to clarify my position on these two issues, here are my reasons to oppose them... 

The Obama Administration Spied on US Citizens to Push Through Its Iran Deal

The accusation that the Obama administration used information gleaned from classified foreign surveillance to smear and blackmail its political opponents at home has gained new traction in recent days, after reports that former National Security Adviser Susan Rice may have been rifling through classified transcripts for over a year that could have included information about Donald Trump and his associates. While using resources that are supposed to keep Americans safe from terrorism for other purposes may be a dereliction of duty, it is no more of a crime than spending all day on Twitter instead of doing your job. The crime here would be if she leaked the names of U.S. citizens to reporters. In the end, the seriousness of the accusation against Rice and other former administration officials who will be caught up in the “unmasking” scandal will rise or fall based on whether or not Donald Trump was actively engaged in a conspiracy to turn over the keys of the White House to the Kremlin. For true believers in the Trump-Kremlin conspiracy theories, the Obama “spying and lying” scandal isn’t a scandal at all; just public officials taking prudent steps to guard against an imminent threat to the republic.

But what if Donald Trump wasn’t the first or only target of an Obama White House campaign of spying and illegal leaks directed at domestic political opponents?

In a December 29, 2015 articleThe Wall Street Journal described how the Obama administration had conducted surveillance on Israeli officials to understand how Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other Israeli officials, like Ambassador Ron Dermer, intended to fight the Iran Deal. The Journal reported that the targeting “also swept up the contents of some of their private conversations with U.S. lawmakers and American-Jewish groups.”

Despite this reporting, it seemed inconceivable at the time that—given myriad legal, ethical, political, and historical concerns, as well as strict National Security Agency protocols that protect the identity of American names caught in intercepts—the Obama White House would have actually spied on American citizens...

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

From Scott Adams' blog: The Slow-Motion Assassination of President Trump

I saw this quote on CNN.com today: “The episode is the latest woe for Trump, whose administration is engulfed in a series of scandals linked to Russia.”
A “series of scandals linked to Russia”? Would it be equally accurate to characterize it as a series of stories manufactured by the media, none of which have been confirmed to be a big deal?
Today’s headline news is that an alleged Comey memo indicates President Trump tried to obstruct justice in the Flynn investigation by saying to Comey in a private meeting, “I hope you can let this go.”

Key word = hope

How did the New York Times characterize Trump’s expression of hope?
Do you see Trump asking Comey to end the Flynn investigation in the quote “I hope you can let this go”?
All I see in that sentence is “duh.” Obviously Trump HOPED his friend and advisor Flynn would be okay. Did it need to be said? Was there some confusion on this point with Comey? Did Comey enter the meeting thinking maybe President Trump wanted to see his friend and advisor Flynn get eaten by the system?
I’m no lawyer, but I can’t see any judge or jury in the United States prosecuting someone for expressing a hope that the future turns out well for his friend.
Watch the headlines and pundits today transmogrify “hope” into “asked Flynn to end the investigation.”
That isn’t news.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The rise of the “Re-Leavers” mean the pro-Brexit electorate is 68%

In the eleven months since the EU referendum, it has become a common theme that we are now a nation divided – 52/48. However, while it is true that most people still think they voted the right way last June, when it comes to the composition of the Brexit tribes in the general election, it is not a simple as “Leave” and “Remain”.

There is a third group who change the dynamics of EU-related arguments – the “Re-Leavers.” These are people who voted to Remain in the EU and many still think that leaving was the wrong decision, but crucially now believe the government has a duty to carry out the will of the British people.

When taking this into account, we can split the country into three groups instead of two: The Hard Leavers who want out of the EU (45%); the Hard Remainers who still want to try to stop Brexit (22%); and the Re-Leavers (23%). The other 9% don’t know.

This group means that when discussing Brexit and its implications in the campaign the electorate is not two pools of voters split almost down the middle 52/48. Instead, it is instead one massive lake made up of Leave and Re-Leave voters and one much smaller Remain pond...  

Monday, May 15, 2017

There's no such thing as Trump Derangement Syndrome... nope, not at all...

And here's yesterday's special Mother's Day message from Hollywood's Joss Wheedon:

Sunday, May 14, 2017

The racism of the Social Justice Wankers war on so-called Cultural Appropriation

Humanity has advanced by cultures interacting with each other, learning from each other and using, or appropriating if you will, cultural elements that appeal from one culture to others.

Have some groups been and are still the victims of racism? Absolutely. But cultural genocide entails eradicating and censoring the cultural expression of a group of people, not by expanding it through use in mainstream culture.

Claiming that particular ethnic groups have an exclusive right to a human development is inherently racist, and through the exclusivity of denying anyone to so-called "Cultural Appropriation," the hypocritical mobs of Social Justice Wankers are demonstrating their usual stupid racism.

I understand that my buddy Jon Kay just resigned his post as Editor-In-Chief of The Walrus Magazine as a result of the backlash about this.

Friday, May 12, 2017

This address to Canada's Senate by Gad Saad is transphobic systemic violence!

Here is Gad Saad's and Theryn Meyer's' full testimony to the Senate committee. If you have the time, it's well worth watching:

Thursday, May 11, 2017

DePaul University forbids ‘Gay Lives Matter’ posters as students protest gay reporter’s talk on radical Islam

DePaul University has prohibited the campus group Turning Point USA from displaying posters with the slogan “Gay Lives Matter” to advertise a presentation Wednesday by a gay reporter on radical Islam’s discrimination against the LGBTQ community.

The decision to reject the posters was made as some students at the school protest the event, titled “Dictatorships and Radical Islam: The Enemies of Gay Rights” and to be given by journalist and foreign correspondent James Kirchick.

Kirchick has worked for numerous publications, foreign and domestic, and is considered a leading voice on American gay politics and international gay rights.

But DePaul Students for Justice in Palestine has indicated on Facebook that its members intend to protest the event. Students leading the charge against his talk appear to have left out any mention of the fact that Kirchick is gay as they sound the alarm on social media...

Andrew Klavan Discusses Hollywood Politics

Incidentally, Andrew wrote the screenplay for the fantastic Michael Caine movie, A Shock To The System, which is one of my all-time favorites and, I'm sure coincidentally, is almost never seen on TV anymore.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

America's decision to arm Syria's Kurds is long overdue

When it comes to renunciation of Jihadism and expressions of women's rights, the Kurds have few rivals in the Muslim world. They are the most progressive and pro-western Muslim ethnic group in the middle east. A people without a country of their own, they are oppressed in every Muslim state where they live. They have been victims of gassing by Sadaam Hussein, cultural genocide by the Turks, and ongoing brutality in Iran, all three of which fear the establishment of a Kurdish homeland.

George H.W. Bush made a slew of promises to the Kurds during the first Gulf war, upon which he reneged. George W. Bush did a little better, by establishing a semi-autonomous Kurdish region in Iraq following the second Gulf War, but that still fell short of the security of genuine Kurdish self-determination.

The Kurds are on the front lines in the fight against the Islamic State, whose fundamentalist, vicious interpretation of Islam is at complete odds with Kurdish liberalism.

It should have been a no-brainer for America to provide arms to the Kurds to allow them to defend themselves and establish a bridgehead for the moderate Islam that western leaders frequently talk about but is virtually nonexistent in the Levant among mainstream Sunni and Shia. Pressure from NATO member Turkey and cowardice in the Obama administration kept the Kurds under-armed as they bravely fought back incursions by ISIS.

However, finally, the US has a president who is unwilling to kow-tow to pressure from Islamist authoritarians, like Turkey's Tayyip Erdogan, and the American arming of Syria's Kurds is in the works.

Hundreds of thousands of people were killed, in Syria, by both ISIS and the Iranian-backed forces of the dictator Bashar al-Assad, and millions of refugees fled that country, creating a domino-effect of destabilization in other countries. That chaos was made possible in large measure by Obama's inaction. In the last few weeks, Donald Trump has made good on the Syrian 'red-line' drawn, and then scurried away from by Barack Obama, and now is providing Syria's Kurds with the means to defend themselves.

Whatever complaints Trump's opponents have of him, his actions in Syria will save lives that were written off by the previous administration and will alleviate the refugee crisis his opponents claim to care about so deeply.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Matthew Lau: Here’s the truth about Ontario’s dismal economic performance that Wynne’s Liberals hope you don’t notice

The Ontario Liberals must surely be joking. Kathleen Wynne, for example, wrote last week in the Huffington Post that by “every measure, our economy is outperforming the competition.” A day earlier, her finance minister, Charles Sousa, said much the same in his budget speech. He concluded by saying that it was “time to look back on what we have achieved together. We have so much to be proud of.”

Since he insists, let us look back on the Ontario Liberals’ economic achievements, of which they are so proud. Wynne and Sousa point to Ontario’s 2.7-per-cent GDP growth last year as proof that Ontario’s economy is “growing and leading.” But was that growth driven by smart economic policy, or by other factors like Toronto’s hot housing market?

Here’s a clue. If Liberal central planning is the recipe for prosperity, perhaps Wynne should explain why inflation-adjusted GDP per capita growth in Ontario from when the Liberals were elected in 2003 to 2015 was a paltry 6.9 per cent (or 0.56 per cent a year, on average). That’s barely half the rate of growth of 13.0 per cent that was seen in the rest of Canada...

Monday, May 8, 2017

Blade Runner 2049 - The Official Trailer

It's got Harrison Ford back and the sequel is produced by the original Blade Runner's director Ridley Scott:

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Somehow, it's Donald Trump's fault that Montana Fishburne was arrested for drunk driving

Her bare behind, public urination and a Donald Trump rant: Montana Fishburne, the troubled daughter of the actor who played the self-possessed leader of the rebels in “The Matrix,” gave I-95 motorists an eyeful and state troopers an earful when she was arrested March 11 on a DUI charge, according to a video of the incident released by the Florida Highway Patrol...

Ireland is determined to prove itself as stupid and backward as an Islamic republic

Police in Ireland are investigating a complaint of blasphemy regarding comments made by Stephen Fry on a television programme shown on Ireland’s state broadcaster, RTÉ.

Gardaí (police) in Dublin have contacted the man who reported the allegation following a broadcast in February 2015, and a full investigation is due to be carried out, the Irish Independent reported.

Under Ireland’s Defamation Act 2009 a person who publishes or utters blasphemous material “shall be guilty of an offence”. A conviction can lead to a fine of up to €25,000.

While being interviewed on The Meaning of Life TV programme, Fry was asked what he would say to God if he had a chance.

“I’d say ‘Bone cancer in children, what’s that about?’ How dare you create a world in which there is such misery that is not our fault,” Fry replied. “It’s not right. It’s utterly, utterly evil. Why should I respect a capricious, mean-minded, stupid god who creates a world which is so full of injustice and pain?”...

Friday, May 5, 2017

Trump Joins Saudi Arabia, Arab Leaders for Potential Anti-Iran Alliance

President Donald Trump is answering critics who call him “anti-Islamic” by making his first trip overseas to Saudi Arabia, to meet with Arab leaders to talk about fighting the so-called Islamic State.

“It lays to rest the notion that America is anti-Muslim,” Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told reporters Thursday, saying it would “change the conversation with regards to America’s relationship with the Islamic world.”

After Riyadh, Trump will travel to Israel and the Vatican—a tour meant to unite the world’s great religions against radicalism and to put a marker down for restarting Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, senior administration officials told reporters Thursday.

The trip indicates that Trump is re-aligning the White House with Saudi Arabia’s and Israel’s anti-Iran position, while the Obama administration had sought to stay more neutral in order to deliver the Iranian nuclear deal. It’s also a signal that Trump is returning to the Bush-era reliance on Sunni Arab strongmen to quell a roiling Middle East, and it’s an in-your-face rejection of critics who called him anti-Islamic.
Senior administration officials said Saudi Arabia has invited leaders who “who share the values and the ideas and the visions… President Trump shares,” to discuss how to step up the fight against the so-called Islamic State, come up with a “war plan” to fight extremism, and most of all, to plot how to counter Iran’s influence throughout the region...

See also:

Pentagon eyes Iran-North Korea military connection

Thursday, May 4, 2017

As Bret Stephens predicted, heads are exploding about his column questioning absolute faith in Climate Change models

Bret Stephens, formerly of the Wall St. Journal, has written his first column for The New York Times.

It is indeed making heads of the usual suspects in the media and political left explode:

..Anyone who has read the 2014 report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change knows that, while the modest (0.85 degrees Celsius, or about 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit) warming of the earth since 1880 is indisputable, as is the human influence on that warming, much else that passes as accepted fact is really a matter of probabilities. That’s especially true of the sophisticated but fallible models and simulations by which scientists attempt to peer into the climate future. To say this isn’t to deny science. It’s to acknowledge it honestly.
By now I can almost hear the heads exploding. They shouldn’t, because there’s another lesson here — this one for anyone who wants to advance the cause of good climate policy. As Revkin wisely noted, hyperbole about climate “not only didn’t fit the science at the time but could even be counterproductive if the hope was to engage a distracted public.”

Let me put it another way. Claiming total certainty about the science traduces the spirit of science and creates openings for doubt whenever a climate claim proves wrong. Demanding abrupt and expensive changes in public policy raises fair questions about ideological intentions. Censoriously asserting one’s moral superiority and treating skeptics as imbeciles and deplorables wins few converts...

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Tarek Fatah: Why don’t anti-fascists fight Islamofascism?

...Today, a new fascism is in the air, one that also speaks of rule over the planet, not just for 1,000 years, but until the end times.

But like the rise of fascism in Germany, Italy and Spain in the 1930s, the West and its citizenry again seem unconcerned or unaware of the catastrophe that may unfold.

Even in the 1930s, when the Spanish Republic stood up to the Hitler-backed fascists of Francisco Franco, the UK and US refused to help the elected government in Madrid, leaving it to left-wing activists from around the world to join the war on the side of the Republic.

These included Canadian volunteers of the Mackenzie-Papineau Brigade (popularly known as the Mac Paps).

Today’s fascists have an additional advantage over the Franco-Mussolini-Hitler types.

They are Islamofascists, who not only seek authoritarian supremacy, but claim to possess a divinely ordained doctrine to justify annihilating democracy, liberty, freedom of expression and the equality of men and women.

I am not just referring to ISIS, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, the Taliban in Afghanistan, al-Shabab in Somalia or Boko Haram in Nigeria. These are the fringes of Islamofascism.

The two main players are in Pakistan, created by Britain and armed by America, and the authoritarian dictatorship of Turkey, that is still sustained by NATO.

Unlike the years leading up to the last Great War against fascism, this time the left in the West has deviated from its historic role and is today an ally of the Islamists...

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

It turns out that Black Lives Matter is protesting in the wrong countries

  • Jordan and India named the world's least tolerant countries
  • U.S., Britain, Canada and South America are among the least racist

  • Britain is one of the most racially tolerant countries on the planet, a survey claims.

    The global social attitudes study claims that the most racially intolerant populations are all in the developing world, with Jordan and India in the top five.

    By contrast, the study of 80 countries over three decades found Western countries were most accepting of other cultures with Britain, the U.S., Canada and Australia more tolerant than anywhere else...

    Monday, May 1, 2017

    Munk Debate: 'Be it resolved the liberal international order is over’

    This will only be available for a short time, so watch while you can - Niall Ferguson debates Fareed Zakaria

    The Exhaustion of American Liberalism

    White guilt gave us a mock politics based on the pretense of moral authority.

    Shelby Steele is one of the great intellects of our time. 
    To understand much of contemporary social culture, read his recent piece in The Wall Street Journal.

    ... White guilt is not actual guilt. Surely most whites are not assailed in the night by feelings of responsibility for America’s historical mistreatment of minorities. Moreover, all the actual guilt in the world would never be enough to support the hegemonic power that the mere pretense of guilt has exercised in American life for the last half-century.

    White guilt is not angst over injustices suffered by others; it is the terror of being stigmatized with America’s old bigotries—racism, sexism, homophobia and xenophobia. To be stigmatized as a fellow traveler with any of these bigotries is to be utterly stripped of moral authority and made into a pariah. The terror of this, of having “no name in the street” as the Bible puts it, pressures whites to act guiltily even when they feel no actual guilt. White guilt is a mock guilt, a pretense of real guilt, a shallow etiquette of empathy, pity and regret.

    It is also the heart and soul of contemporary liberalism. This liberalism is the politics given to us by white guilt, and it shares white guilt’s central corruption. It is not real liberalism, in the classic sense. It is a mock liberalism. Freedom is not its raison d’être; moral authority is...

    Sunday, April 30, 2017

    Archaeologists are using CT scans to study the plaster casts of victims of Mount Vesuvius

    ...In 1974 four people were discovered in voids under a flight of stairs leading to the House of the Golden Bracelet’s garden. Using the technique pioneered by Fiorelli, casts were made of the bodies, revealing them to be a man, a woman, and two small children who had likely died on the eruption’s second day, killed either by the collapse of the staircase or by the pyroclastic flow. The casts have now been moved to a lab in Pompeii as part of an ambitious project to study and restore 86 of the 103 that have been made, including the four people from the House of the Golden Bracelet. Some casts are more than 150 years old, and their surfaces have become marred and pitted. Iron rods used for reinforcement have rusted and expanded, cracking the casts, and preserved bones have decayed. Even some of the newer ones (the most recent was made in 1999) have shown need of immediate care. “We decided to undertake this project now because we need to maintain the casts’ structural integrity. It will also bring the story of Pompeii’s destruction to those living now, and to future generations,” says Stefano Vanacore, the director of the lab in Pompeii. None of the casts has ever been restored, presenting the team with a huge challenge. “There was no experience of how to restore the casts, and no single way to do so because they were made over such a long time using many different materials,” Vanacore says. “For example, Fiorelli used very high-quality plaster reinforced with wood, so his casts are in much better condition than those made later with poorer quality materials.”...

    Pompeii Casts Family
    (Pasquale Sorrentino)
    Casts of the man, the woman, and the two children found in the House of the Golden Bracelet

    Netanyahu and the Israeli Arabs: The Untold Story

    If there is one thing liberal pundits in Israel and America seem to agree on, it's that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu doesn't like Israeli Arabs and wishes them harm. The outcry over his remarks—ill-judged at the very least and inflammatory at worst—regarding Arab voters being brought in buses to vote against him helped cement this suspicion. But a close look at Netanyahu's actual record on Israeli Arabs, as opposed to this or that public remark, reveals a very different story.

    For a start, affirmative action policies initiated under Ehud Olmert were accelerated during the Netanyahu administration. These prioritized economic development, including allocating funds for joint industrial parks in Arab and Jewish towns. Subsidies helped firms hire Arab labor and expanded transportation infrastructure, which allowed Arabs to reach employment sites. These ventures were so successful that the government began setting up industrial parks and employment offices exclusively in Arab towns. In addition, the Israeli government developed a five-year plan for improving Arab education and established a special unit in the prime minister’s office to promote economic development in the Arab community.

    Despite the opposition of Palestinian nationalists, more and more Arab communities began to cooperate with government agencies, particularly those that were aligned with Hadash. At the same time, educational and occupational initiatives began to improve the possibilities for Arab women and their labor participation rates increased substantially: for women 30 to 39 years old, it increased from 24 percent in 2005 to 34 percent in 2010...

    Two of my favorites together! Andrew Klaven and Mark Steyn

    Saturday, April 29, 2017

    The scientific consensus is that climate change is good for the world

    ...There are many likely effects of climate change: positive and negative, economic and ecological, humanitarian and financial. And if you aggregate them all, the overall effect is positive today — and likely to stay positive until around 2080. That was the conclusion of Professor Richard Tol of Sussex University after he reviewed 14 different studies of the effects of future climate trends.

    To be precise, Prof Tol calculated that climate change would be beneficial up to 2.2˚C of warming from 2009 (when he wrote his paper). This means approximately 3˚C from pre-industrial levels, since about 0.8˚C of warming has happened in the last 150 years. The latest estimates of climate sensitivity suggest that such temperatures may not be reached till the end of the century — if at all. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, whose reports define the consensis, is sticking to older assumptions, however, which would mean net benefits till about 2080. Either way, it’s a long way off.

    Now Prof Tol has a new paper, published as a chapter in a new book, called How Much have Global Problems Cost the World?, which is edited by Bjorn Lomborg, director of the Copenhagen Consensus Centre, and was reviewed by a group of leading economists. In this paper he casts his gaze backwards to the last century. He concludes that climate change did indeed raise human and planetary welfare during the 20th century.

    You can choose not to believe the studies Prof Tol has collated. Or you can say the net benefit is small (which it is), you can argue that the benefits have accrued more to rich countries than poor countries (which is true) or you can emphasise that after 2080 climate change would probably do net harm to the world (which may also be true). You can even say you do not trust the models involved (though they have proved more reliable than the temperature models). But what you cannot do is deny that this is the current consensus. If you wish to accept the consensus on temperature models, then you should accept the consensus on economic benefit.

    Overall, Prof Tol finds that climate change in the past century improved human welfare. By how much? He calculates by 1.4 per cent of global economic output, rising to 1.5 per cent by 2025. For some people, this means the difference between survival and starvation...

    The giants of Labour's past would be appalled by Jeremy Corbyn

    ...It looks as if the warnings were right all along: the Corbyn coup was never about winning an election – how could it have been? – nor about truly testing the popularity of an authentically and unapologetically socialist programme at the polls. Instead, the plan was to drain the Labour Party of any kind of electoral potency, to kill it as either a serious opposition or a government-in-waiting, with all the compromises these entail, and to reduce it to a cadaverous shell fit only for conspiracy-theorist cranks and sinister Jew-baiters.

    The “Momentum Kids” plan – providing childcare and, presumably, indoctrination for a new generation of deadheads – gave the game away: a long-term, Hamas-style construction of an extra-Parliamentary social movement. Completely potty, deeply un-British. 
    The Corbynites claim to walk in the footsteps of the “real” Labour tradition, but the great patriots of, say, Attlee’s Cabinet would have despised them. Michael Foot, for all his political flaws, was a serious intellectual – Corbyn cannot speak and think at the same time, while his backroom team cannot efficiently carry off the most basic tasks. They are not just wrong, they are rubbish.

    It will be fascinating to pick apart the numbers on June 9. The hard-Left claims to have the interests of the poorest, the most vulnerable, the working class, at heart. Yet these people, if they vote at all, will overwhelmingly vote Tory or Ukip in the south, and SNP in Scotland.

    Labour’s support will come largely from the kind of fervent social justice warrior who has enough spare time and cash to patronise his social inferiors in the name of class war – and there just aren’t that many of them. The Tories will have a landslide majority not just to deliver a Brexit of whichever stripe they fancy, but to continue the domestic austerity agenda and to shape the future economy as they see fit. They will be able to do it all unopposed, for years to come. In this light, the scale and consequences of Labour’s betrayal are breathtaking...

    Friday, April 28, 2017

    Andrew Lawton: 30 years ago, a professor predicted the ‘closing of the American mind’ — how right he was

    Organizers pulled the plug on a planned lecture by author Ann Coulter at the University of California, Berkeley this week. This is only the latest example of speakers — generally conservatives — being shut down by riots or the threat of violent protest.

    It was only in February that Berkeley was literally aflame after hundreds of “anti-fascist” protesters took to the streets in opposition to Milo Yiannopoulos.

    The conduct was reprehensible, but so was that of the 100 faculty members who called on Berkeley to cancel the event, citing the offensive nature of Yiannopoulos’ schtick.

    Many of these professors have tenure, protecting their right to be controversial. Not as important for others, apparently.

    Universities were once bastions of free speech, but genuine dialogue has been replaced by vicious shouting matches and conformity enforced by mob rule. This is particularly sobering at Berkeley, given its long-standing support of free expression.

    Anyone caught off guard by this incursion of censorship hasn’t been paying attention: We were warned...

    All 100 senators sign letter asking for equal treatment of Israel at the U.N.

    All 100 U.S. senators signed a letter released Friday asking U.N. Secretary General António Guterres to address what the lawmakers call entrenched bias against Israel at the world body.

    The unanimous message notes that the United States is the largest contributor to the United Nations but does not threaten the withholding of U.S. dues. Still, it uses strong language to insist that the United Nations rectify what the senators said is unequal treatment of Israel on human rights and other grounds.

    “Through words and actions, we urge you to ensure that Israel is treated neither better nor worse than any other U.N. member in good standing,” the letter said.

    The letter was obtained Thursday by The Washington Post.

    “As both the U.N.’s principal founding member and its largest contributor, the United States should insist on reform,” the letter read. “We are deeply committed to international leadership and to advancing respect for human rights. But continued targeting of Israel by the U.N. Human Rights Council and other U.N. entities is unacceptable.”...

    Thursday, April 27, 2017

    Student ‘glares’ at peers, gets reported as bias incident

    ...According to a university document obtained this week by The College Fix through a public records act request, here’s what happened, according to the complainant:
    There was a white female student that kept making glares at me and another student. She would glare at both of us and then continue to proceed on her phone. This proceeded for 2 hours. Both me and the victim were Asian American women. I don’t know if race plays a part in it. Though this event was small and seemingly insignificant, it made me and the other victim feel unsafe, uncomfortable and paranoid. We did not approach this person.
    The incident location was reported as a campus library. The complainant seems unaware that the woman with a piercing stare might be deep in thought as she studies, or is troubled by something she is reading on her phone.
    Nevertheless, she reports to campus authorities she is downright traumatized.

    Wednesday, April 26, 2017

    LGBTory went to a rally to protest anti-gay persecution in Chechnya and got harassed by 'social justice' fascists

    ...In recent months, some 200 gay men have reportedly been detained by Chechen authorities in six concentration camps where they are being tortured, according to Russian journalists. Three men have reportedly been murdered. LGBTory has been speaking out against this atrocity (read our statement here), and we have been urging the Canadian government to immediately rescue these men. We have publicly encouraged people to support the work of Toronto’s Rainbow Railroad, an organization working hard to get these vulnerable men out of Chechnya.

    The rally was organized by Rainbow Railroad and the Glad Day Book Shop. We met at Barbara Hall Park where we joined approximately 100 people at the rally, where speakers included LGBT people like Bernard from Cameroon who himself was a recipient of a Rainbow Railroad sponsorship.

    We received blatant hostility right away when we unfurled our LGBTory flag. Many in the crowd were verbally abusive to us, haranguing us about everything from carbon taxes to trans issues...

    On University Safe Spaces by John Clapp

    Toronto-based artist John Clapp sent me this drawing called On University Safe Spaces.

    I think it describes the situation well.

    Tuesday, April 25, 2017

    Liberals Are Amazed That Campus Free Speech Outrage Gets So Much Attention. Here's Why It Matters.

    "...it's wrong to say that this fixation on the current state of higher education in America is unwarranted. Liberal arts undergrads may not have the nuclear codes, but they are spending lots of money and years of their lives in pursuit of the most prestigious credentials in the world—the college diploma—and the power it buys. The graduates of Berkeley, and Middlebury, and Michigan, and Mizzou, and a hundred other institutions enduring similar moments of illiberalism, will go on to become business leaders and political leaders and activists and inventors and doctors and lawyers and artists and writers. They don't have their fingers on a button that could destroy the world all at once, but their ideas do matter, and will shape society in the long run.

    The question is this: do we want the society of the future—the one built by Berkeley graduates—to reflect a sustained commitment to free speech and other liberal, Enlightenment norms, or not? If the answer is yes, then what happens at Berkeley should matter..."

    Would you believe... Don Adams doing stand up

    Sunday, April 23, 2017

    Friday, April 21, 2017

    Cuba Gooding Sr. died

    This is sad - Cuba Gooding Sr., father of the Academy Award winning actor and who had a huge hit with The Main Ingredient singing Everybody Plays The Fool, was found dead today.

    Nikki Haley shifts U.N.'s Israel-bashing to turn spotlight on Iran & its terror proxy, Hezbollah

    Barbara Kay: How academics portray Islam as a’ victim’ of oppression — even as they defend violent Islamists

    ...Does M-103’s “Islamophobia” mean expressed hatred of people — the West’s normal definition of hatred — or hatred of a belief system, normally a protected category of expression here, as religious Christians know to their chagrin? Canadians have no idea if their right to express distaste for Islam would still be protected in a bill premised on the recommendations of this “study.”

    I therefore contacted Jasmin Zine, who teaches race, ethnic, gender and postcolonial studies at Wilfrid Laurier University. She is a regular — and ideologically representative — participant in the Berkeley Islamophobia conferences, including this one.

    I asked her to define Islamophobia for me, which she promptly did: “Islamophobia is a fear and hatred of Islam and Muslims that translates into individual, ideological and systemic forms of oppression.” This is quite an insidious, though admittedly clever, definition. Note that it puts “fear and hatred” of Islam, not Muslims, at the centre of the phobia. And the word “translates” is a masterstroke.

    Under this definition, if I write publicly that Islam is inherently Christophobic and anti-Semitic according to its own texts, and a Muslim declares himself “oppressed” by my statement, who would be the interpeter for the alleged “translation”? The courts? Iqra Khalid? Prime Minister Justin Trudeau?

    As one can see from her defined area of study, Zine is an intersectionalist, who sees the world in Marxist tropes of power and powerlessness, with white imperialists and their issue holding the power, and all disadvantaged minorities, into which category Muslims are now tucked, as the systematically disempowered.

    It takes a certain chutzpah to hold that Islam, given its history of conquest of indigenous peoples, sexism, homophobia and violence against Christians and Jews, is equal in victim status — given their respective histories — to blacks, native Americans, gays and Jews. Yet that is the basic narrative thrust not only of Zine’s work, but of all the “scholars” promoting the Islamophobia blasphemy-law agenda...

    Thursday, April 20, 2017

    No good deed goes unpunished - Gaza sisters smuggled explosives on way to Israeli hospital

    JERUSALEM — Two Palestinian sisters from Gaza were caught trying to smuggle explosives hidden in medicine containers into Israel as they were headed for cancer treatment at a Jerusalem hospital, authorities said, accusing Hamas militants of trying to use the women to carry out an attack.

    In a statement, the Shin Bet security agency said the women had entry permits to Israel for medical treatment. It said they were caught Wednesday...

    Wednesday, April 19, 2017

    LGBTQ police officers' group calls it 'unacceptable' for city to fund Pride

    The head of the city's police union delivered a letter to the mayor's office Wednesday that calls it "unacceptable" for Toronto to sponsor this year's Pride Festivities when the Toronto Police Service has been excluded from participating.

    Mike McCormack read the letter for reporters Wednesday morning after walking into the mayor's office at city hall to deliver a copy.

    Pride is slated to receive a $260,000 city grant this year.

    The letter, from the force's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer Internal Support Network Executive Committee and addressed to McCormack, says that "we, as city employees, would feel completely devalued and unsupported by our employer should they fund this event at this time.

    "How can we possibly feel appreciated by our employer while they sponsor an event that its own employees have been disinvited from participating in as full, equal, and active participants in their role as city employees," the letter goes on.

    "We can think of no examples in Canada where either a public or private employer has been a lead sponsor for an event their employees were asked not to participate in."...

    Tuesday, April 18, 2017

    Of course the Allies knew about the Nazi death camps before 1945

    News has come out that secret files reveal that allied leaders know about the Nazi death camps and Hitler's plan to exterminate the Jews as early as 1942.

    Except it isn't news.

    Americans such as the Dulles Brothers, John Foster, who was a Secretary of State, and Allan, who headed the CIA were well aware of Nazi extermination plans. The Dulles brothers were war profiteers who made deals with Nazis and with Ibn Saud for oil revenues. They wanted as many dead Jews as possible in order to prevent them going to Palestine to establish a Jewish homeland there.

    Monday, April 17, 2017

    Muslim panel leads fight against Motion 103

    “The real threat to Canada is not Islamophobia, it is radical Islam and Islamofascism,” said Muslim activist and panel member Asif Javaid, at a groundbreaking event that brought Muslims together who oppose a Liberal MP’s motion to condemn Islamophobia. They packed the hall in a Mississauga venue.
    The motion passed in Parliament in March and many there fear it will lead to a bill that would muzzle free speech and be a slippery slope to Sharia law. In a statement on the flyer advertising the event, it states, “On April 9, join Muslims Against M103 to protest the infiltration of the Muslim Brotherhood and Jamaat-e-Islami agenda in Canada’s highest corridors of power, the House of Commons.”

    Broadcaster Tahir Gora was concerned about the mixing of politics with religion. “Most politicians supported it for their short term political gains. They can’t understand the magnitude of damage that Muslims in Canada would face.”

    A impassioned Tarek Fatah, columnist and author, proclaimed, “The target of this M 103 has been Muslims who stand up to the jihadi agenda and fight for Canada’s treasured institution of freedom of speech that this initiative tries to stifle.” Because of his unbridled criticism of Islam, he has a bounty of one million rupees on his head in Pakistan.

    Furthermore, they agreed, there will be a backlash of segregation and polarization of Muslims , which will incur more discrimination and more violence. “Please don’t politicize our faith. Please don’t segregate Muslims,” Javaid pleaded.

    Dismissing Islamophobia as a “myth” they pointed out that there are eleven Muslim MP’s sitting in Parliament – the highest ever. The Minister of Immigration is a black Muslim. The highest number of refugees coming to Canada are Muslim.

    “They don’t want to go to Muslim countries. The real enemy of Muslims are Muslims”, said Fatah. “They have been killing each other since the Prophet died. No Muslim wants to seek refuge in a Muslim country.”...

    It Turns Out Alex Jones Is Just Pretending

    Infowars’ Alex Jones is just pretending when hosting his show, where he frequently espouses conspiracy theories and recently challenged actor Alec Baldwin to a fistfight.

    That’s what his lawyer, Randall Wilhite argued at a recent pretrial hearing, the Austin-American Statesman first reported. Jones is currently battling his ex-wife in court over custody of their children. His case will depend on convincing jurors that Alex Jones the Infowars host is different from Alex Jones the person.

    “He’s playing a character,” Wilhite said, according to the Statesman. “He is a performance artist.”...

    Saturday, April 15, 2017

    Friday, April 14, 2017

    Trump opponents are dismayed that most Trump supporters aren't dismayed by his inconsistencies

    ...They knew all along that they were not voting for a man with concrete convictions. And they continue to see that lack of rigidity — his preference for the transactional over the dogmatic — as a quality they want in a chief executive.

    So while much of the country sees the swerving on policy as another sign of White House dysfunction, many conservatives shrug it off as esoteric jockeying over foreign alliances, currency manipulation and economic policy. They are focused more, they say, on what they see as a litany of recent victories.

    Illegal border crossings are down sharply, a development that Mr. Sessions promoted in a visit to Arizona this week. The Department of Homeland Security just closed its process for accepting bids for construction of a border wall. A new Supreme Court justice adored by conservatives, Neil M. Gorsuch, joined the court this week. And Mr. Trump signed legislation on Thursday aimed at cutting off federal funding for Planned Parenthood...

    More at The New York Times

    Thursday, April 13, 2017

    Your baby is an evil racist

    I've met Kang Lee and discussed his research into the lying behavior of children with him. Dr. Lee and his team are the only redeeming element at OISE, because, aside from his brilliance, his seems to be the only area there which hasn't become heavily politicized. Yet.

    U of T Professor Kang Lee says two of his recent studies indicate that racial bias may arise in babies as young as six to nine months of age.

    Lee, a professor at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, says that lack of exposure to other races may be the cause.

    He and researchers from the University of Toronto, the U.S., U.K., France and China, show that six to nine month olds demonstrate racial bias in favour of members of their own race and racial bias against those of other races.

    In the first study, published in Developmental Science, Lee  showed that six- to nine-month-old babies begin to associate faces from their own race with happy music and those from other races with sad music.

    In the second study, published in Child Development, the researchers found that babies as young as six months were more inclined to learn information from an adult of his or her own race, rather than from an adult of a different race.

    “The results show that race-based bias already exists around the second half of a child’s first year,” said Lee, a Canada Research Chair in moral development and developmental neuroscience and lead author of the studies. “This challenges the popular view that race-based bias first emerges only during the preschool years.”

    He believes the results of these studies are important given the issues of widespread racial bias and racism around the world.

    “These findings thus point to the possibility that racial bias may arise out of our lack of exposure to other-race individuals in infancy,” Lee said. “If we can pinpoint the starting point of racial bias, which we may have done here, we can start to find ways to prevent racial biases from happening.”...