Monday, August 21, 2017






Free speech concerns as extreme-right evicted from web

A sweeping crackdown by US internet and social media companies on neo-Nazi and white supremacist material has sparked warnings in America that the web's grand promise of free speech is on the rocks.

Over the past week, Vanguard America, Daily Stormer and other such ultra-right racist groups and their members known for extremely violent and offensive postings and websites were essentially scrubbed from the public web.

Major internet companies took action after the groups came out in support of a violent right-wing rally in Charlottesville, Virginia that ended with the death of a counter-demonstrator and shocked the nation.

Daily Stormer and its founder Andrew Anglin, who openly promotes Adolf Hitler, saw web host GoDaddy shut their website. Google did the same after they moved. They were blocked a third time by another web host, after reopening with an ostensibly safe Russian domain name.

Then Cloudflare, which provides an essential security service to millions of web hosts and sites, also said it would block Daily Stormer.

Others found their Facebook and Instagram accounts frozen. Google cut the app for social media site Gab, a favorite venue for far-right groups.

And in one of the more ignominious moments, white supremacist Chris Cantwell was booted off dating site OkCupid on Thursday.  "At OkCupid, we take the truth of everyone's inalienable rights very seriously," said chief executive Elie Seidman. However, Seidman said, "the privilege of being in the OkCupid community does not extend to Nazis and supremacists."

But such moves raise the question: should the private companies that control most web services have the power to make such decisions?

Are the internet and social media services now such an indelible part of our daily lives that people should have the right to make full use of them, like they do highways, electricity, and police protections?

Electronic Frontier Foundation, a leading think tank and lobby for civil liberties in the digital world, denounced what it called "dangerous" censorship by GoDaddy, Google and Cloudflare.

"We must also recognize that on the internet, any tactic used now to silence neo-Nazis will soon be used against others, including people whose opinions we agree with," they said.

"Protecting free speech is not something we do because we agree with all of the speech that gets protected. We do it because we believe that no one -- not the government and not private commercial enterprises -- should decide who gets to speak and who doesn't."

The action of Cloudflare was even more significant because of the centrality of its position on the web. When Cloudflare shut down Daily Stormer, Anglin was essentially forced to reopen Daily Stormer on the less easily accessed "dark web."

Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince admitted the capricious nature of his decision in an email to staff, and the broader questions it raised. "My rationale for making this decision was simple: the people behind the Daily Stormer are assholes and I'd had enough," he said. "Literally, I woke up in a bad mood and decided someone shouldn't be allowed on the internet."

"No one should have that power," he continued. "We need to have a conversation about who and how the content online is controlled."

Gab, which resembles Twitter as a micro-blogging platform, was launched last year by libertarian free speech advocate Andrew Torba and has more than 200,000 users now, according to spokesman Utsav Sanduja.

Much of its content has a strong right-wing bias, including openly white supremacist and neo-Nazi postings, though Sanduja says they have far-left users as well, and a lot of non-political content.

Nevertheless, it was a distinct surge in right-wing hate postings that led Google Play, the Android phone app store, to drop Gab last week. "Social networking apps need to demonstrate a sufficient level of moderation, including for content that encourages violence and advocates hate against groups of people," a Google spokesperson told AFP.

Sanduja called it censorship pure and simple, noting that the US Constitution unequivocally protects the right to free speech, even if deemed offensive.

"Google, Apple, Twitter... the sheer amount of people on their sites makes them absolutely integral to the democratic process," he argued. "The Supreme Court has ruled, hate speech is free speech, and it's protected speech," he said.

"Gab is trying to ensure that users have these constitutionally afforded rights. These giant corporations are taking them away from people."

SOURCE






Another charming multiculturalist



A man has been arrested in connection with the gruesome murders of his sister and cousins - all under the age of 10 - who were found dead inside a Maryland home. Antonio Williams, 25, was taken into custody by local police late on Friday night and cops say he has confessed to the killings.

Williams lives on Brooke Jane Drive, which is the same street as the home the three little girls were found dead in that morning in Clinton, Maryland.

He had been left at the home to look after the girls - his sister, six-year-old Nadira Withers, and cousins nine-year-old Ariana Decree and six-year-old Ajayah Decree - by his mother, Andrena Kelley.

The cousins were from Newark, New Jersey and are the daughters of the suspect’s mother’s cousin.

The bodies were reportedly found by Kelley who then called the police. The victims were suffering from stab wounds and pronounced dead on the scene.

Williams has been charged with three counts of first-degree murder and three counts of second-degree murder. Cops say he has confessed to stabbing and killing his relatives.

SOURCE






What Swedes Give Up for ‘Free’ Money

When the state treats childrearing like a job, make sure you don’t run afoul of the boss

I moved to Sweden for love, not money, but I was happy to learn that merely living in this social democracy also entitled me to paid parental-leave benefits. Who could object to free money, handed out by the government to all Swedish parents? Then I became a father.

Two hundred years ago, Sweden was a nation of smallholding farm families, many of whom were poor enough to prefer emigrating to North Dakota or Minnesota. Today, workers in Sweden are offered a welfare smörgåsbord of free health care, subsidized housing, paid leave, unemployment benefits, job training and pensions. This system of interlaced welfare programs is the government’s attempt to realize a political and social ideal that has seemingly universal acceptance among Swedes, known as trygghet.

Although trygghet is usually defined as security or safety, neither of these translations carries the implications about the future that trygghet projects. To be trygg is to feel so comfortable and certain in a secure, predictable environment that you can relax, express yourself and grow. Trygghet is what Swedish parents are expected to give their children, and ensuring that they do so is the function of the most prized component of the Swedish social-welfare state, the parental benefits system.

For one year after the birth of our son, the government’s social-insurance agency will pay 80% of the salary my Swedish wife earned as a lawyer working in public service. I was surprised to learn that I, too, could receive parental benefits, for up to six months, at the generous minimum level. Only after a recent family crisis did I understand why.

Six months ago, my 2-year-old niece broke her leg. The physician who treated the girl told my brother-in-law that his daughter would be given a full-body CT scan. The doctor insisted that the procedure was mandatory, but not for any medical reason. Rather, the Swedish social-services administration requires such scans to look for evidence of child abuse. While the doctor did note that the broken leg was the result of an accident, he told my brother-in-law the matter was “out of my hands.”

When the girl’s parents refused to subject her to this unnecessary procedure, the hidden machinery of the Swedish welfare state sprang into motion. My brother-in-law and his wife were required to attend multiple interviews with social workers and to submit friends and neighbors in their small town for questioning. Social workers even inspected their home. Suddenly, decisions as benign as what milk to buy seemed potential evidence of parental deficiency. My in-laws feared their two children might be taken from them.

In Sweden, the state reserves for itself ultimate responsibility for children’s well-being. As a parent my job is to give my kids the trygghet necessary to become productive, tax-paying members of Swedish society. This is why I receive financial support and medical benefits. The state is paying me to be a parent. I am, in effect, an employee—and if I do a poor job, my responsibility as a parent might be taken away from me.

Social services never found grounds to continue their investigation of my brother-in-law’s family beyond the preliminary steps. Nevertheless, they had been made to feel belittlement, confusion and embarrassment, simply because they disagreed with the authorities. These reflexive feelings of guilt and shame are another, far subtler and more insidious mechanism for enforcing conformity.

The Swedish word for this cultural phenomenon, lagom, has recently appeared in the international press, mistranslated as moderation or self-restraint. Lagom is actually a uniquely Swedish conception of common sense, according to which the best way of acting is always inextricable from how you expect your neighbors to act. Lagom is what everyone thinks everyone else thinks—whether about milk, welfare or what constitutes good parenting.

The mere fact of being investigated by a social-services agency placed my brother-in-law’s family outside lagom. No one needed to accuse them of anything, and that was the point. No reasonable person should ever do anything suspected of being unreasonable.

Some parents insist, as my wife and I do, on having their own ideas about raising children. In our opinion, anesthetizing a 2-year-old girl and subjecting her to radiation for an unnecessary medical procedure is not lagom. Does this mean we can’t accept parental support from the state? Does this mean we can’t live in Sweden?

Although the welfare state is often debated in economic terms, we have yet to put a price on self-determination or freedom of conscience. What I once thought was free money may cost more than I am prepared to pay.

SOURCE





Australia: This is why I'll be voting 'no' to same-sex marriage

Article by Dr Kevin Donnelly below, a Senior Research Fellow at the Australian Catholic University.  I will also be voting No in the national ballot -- because I don't think a homosexual union can ever be a marriage and because homosexuals can already  enter into other arrangements which give them the normal privileges and obligations of marriage-- JR


There's no doubt that central to the concept of family is a definition of marriage involving a man and a woman for the purpose of procreation. With only minor exceptions over some hundreds of years and across all the major religions, this is how marriage has been, and continues to be, defined.

It's also true that about 98 per cent of Australians identify as heterosexual and according to the 2011 census figures only 1 per cent of Australian couples are same-sex, with surveys suggesting only a minority want same-sex marriage. There are more important issues to worry about.

What exactly would change for same-sex couples if they could marry?

We should also forget the Safe Schools' postmodern, deconstructed definition of marriage where gender and sexuality are fluid and limitless and individuals are free to choose whatever they choose to self-identify as.

No matter how much gays and lesbians might want to wish otherwise from a physiological and biological point of view, only men and women can have children. Such is the nature of conceiving and giving birth that to pretend otherwise is to deny how nature works.

To put it bluntly, gays and lesbians are physically incapable of procreation and having their own children. For them to believe otherwise is to deny the life choice they have made and to believe they should be entitled to something normally associated with biological parents.

It's also true that the ideal situation is where children are raised by their biological parents instead of conception involving a third party donating sperm or paying a surrogate mother. As any parent well knows, the intimate and unique bond between a biological parent and his or her child is primal in its force.

No wonder children conceived by donor sperm now have the legal right to discover their true parentage and less privileged countries such as Thailand and Cambodia are banning surrogacy.
Breaking News Alert

Parents who have conceived naturally as a key aspect of what it means to be married also know that children require a male and a female role model if they are to fully mature and develop as young adults.

Both genetically and emotionally, and what is expected socially, men and women are different. While much has been done to promote equality of the sexes the fact is that boys need strong, male role models.

This I know from personal experience after losing a father to alcoholism and domestic violence as a young child and missing out on the love and companionship that only a father can provide.

In the same way, despite the campaign by feminists to erase gender stereotyping, young girls generally copy their mothers and express themselves in a feminine way. As a general rule, boys are more physical than girls and less emotionally demonstrative.

Forget the mantra that equality only occurs when all sexes are the same – it is possible to be equal but different.

Changing the marriage act to include same-sex couples radically redefines and alters the meaning of a sacred union that provides more than just a physical and emotional connection.

Such is the special union of body and spirit involved in a marriage between a man and a woman that it necessitates a unique ritual and sacred compact that should not be weakened by being radically redefined as argued by same-sex activists.

The argument that the marriage act should not be radically redefined is based on the fact that gays and lesbians already enjoy all the rights and privileges of de-facto couples. Long gone are the days when gays and lesbians were ostracised or discriminated against.

There's no doubt that we are living in a time of significant social change, where social institutions such as marriage that have stood the test of time are being critiqued and undermined.

While some argue the benefits of such change, including increased autonomy, freedom and diversity, there is also an obvious downside. The English poet T. S. Eliot argues, "by far the most important channel of transmission of culture remains the family: and when family fails to play its part, we must expect our culture to deteriorate".

While not being as strident as Eliot it is true that family is central to a society's continued prosperity and growth. And central to the concept of family is the traditional definition of marriage.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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Sunday, August 20, 2017



Anti-immigration protesters attacked by hundreds of far-Leftists as they march through the streets of Barcelona just one day after deadly terror attack in the city

The anti-immigration protesters are described by the sensationalist media as members of the Falange, the Fascist organization that kept dictator Franco in power for many decades, though Franco himself was not a member of it.  The Falange does still exist in Spain -- getting about 1% of the vote in national elections -- but we have no means of knowing the party connections of the protesters.  It could all be just media beatup. There are just not many Falangists left and you would not have to be a member of the Falange to be angry about Muslim immigration to Spain after the recent terrorist attacks there.

But even if we do assume that the protesters were Falangists, that does NOT of itself  indicate that they were racists.  From the Roman empire to this day, Southern Europeans have been little concerned about race.  Italian dictator Mussolini did for quite a time have Jews prominent in the Fascist party for instance.  Mussolini eventually proclaimed some widely-ignored anti-Jewish laws only after Hitler pushed him into it. And there is great sympathy for Israel in Italy to this day.

And the Falange of Franco's day were not concerned about race either.  Their primary foci were anti-communism and pro-Catholicism.  So to procalim that these anti-immigration protesters were racists would be ipso facto unfounded, though the media will no doubt say otherwise

The one thing we can conclude is that, like Hitler's Brownshirts,  Leftist thugs will emerge to attack those they disagree with wherever that might be.  It is they who are the Nazis, not the critics of Islam



Far-right activists were met by a huge crowd of anti-fascist protesters as they marched in Barcelona one day after a terror attack killed 13 people in the city. 

Members of the extreme Falange group congregated on Las Ramblas boulevard this afternoon before being met by hundreds of counter-demonstrators waving flags and banners.

Tensions were so high that armed riot police were called in to separate the groups as violence broke out.

Pictures show demonstrators shouting in each other's faces and fighting in the streets as tempers boiled over.

One photograph shows an anti-fascist punching a Falange supporter in the face amid a scuffle in the crowd. The punched man, who was wearing a T-Shirt emblazoned with the far-right slogan, 'Do not stop until you conquer', was later seen with a black eye.

He was later seen with a fellow protester whose face and hands were covered in blood after he had been hit in the nose.

The chaotic scenes took place near the scene where yesterday a van ploughed into pedestrians in an attack that also left more than 100 injured.

Falange took to the streets to 'protest Islam' and blame Spain's immigration policy for the attack.

A post on the group's website said: 'No one was fooled into thinking that the policies of multiculturalism and #RefugeesWelcome wouldn’t end like they did in Las Ramblas in Barcelona.'

Falange abandoned the demonstration after it was stormed by counter-demonstrators and had to be escorted away from Las Ramblas by police.

SOURCE






It’s clear now: the left only hates certain kinds of neo-fascism

Rarely has the hypocrisy of the West’s ostensible liberals and leftists been as violently exposed as it has been this week. Between Charlottesville and Barcelona, between their fury over the former and their embarrassment at the latter, we have gained a glimpse into today’s extraordinary double standards over extremists who loathe liberty, democracy and swathes of mankind. If the extremists are white and fond of the swastika, they’ll be roundly condemned, organised against, transformed into a focal point for the activities of a flagging left. But if they’re Muslims, if it’s a misogynistic, homophobic caliphate they want to build, if their targets are ‘kuffars’ rather than pinkos or black people, they will be frowned upon, of course, but never raged against. Never organised against. They will be treated more forgivingly, and explicitly so. It’s clear now: leftists only dislike certain kinds of neo-fascism.

Even before the barbarism in Barcelona, even before that Islamist terrorist mowed down scores of people, killing 13, the discussion about Charlottesville had become unhinged. What was in truth a nasty but small demonstration by white-power losers was transformed into the second coming of the Third Reich. Where most leftists and liberal commentators respond to Islamist barbarism with a sad emoji or a national flag on their Facebook page, they responded to Charlottesville with historic hyperbole. They shared images of Brits landing in France to fight Nazis, implying they were the heirs to such fighting. America mirrors Germany in the 1930s, they claimed. The self-flattery was off the scale, as if their breaking a nail as they tweet a piss-taking meme of Richard Spencer is comparable with those working-class men who left their families to fight in the Spanish Civil War or join the Greek resistance. The left’s blowing-up of Charlottesville is directly proportionate to its loss of focus and principle: it spies in these pathetic neo-Nazis a force it might resuscitate its fortunes in opposition to; a thing it might define itself against.

But if the treatment of Charlottesville and its vile car attack as a return of Nazism looked questionable before Barcelona, it looks mad after it. Yes, there are extremists in the West who have declared war on our fellow citizens, our liberties and our democracy. But they aren’t American hillbillies who once tried to read Mein Kampf — they’re Islamists, Muslims who subscribe to an extraordinarily intolerant interpretation of their religion and who increasingly think little of slaughtering anybody whose values run counter to theirs, whether it’s French cartoonists, Berlin Christmas shoppers, British pop fans, or crowds in Nice celebrating Bastille Day and the birth of modern mass democracy. These people’s violent misanthropy makes America’s white-nationalist movement look like a hippy outfit in comparison. A suspected hard-right fanatic killed one person at Charlottesville, in a foul assault on life and liberty; Islamists, if we add Barcelona, have killed more than 460 people in Europe in the past three years. Four-hundred-and-sixty. Let that sink in.

And yet after Barcelona, as is the case after every Islamist attack, there has been an awkward, shuffling silence in left and liberal circles. There is media coverage, of course. Lots of it, as there should be. There are condemnations and offers of solidarity with Barcelona, and so on. That’s all good. But politics? Anger? A demand that we recognise the gravity of the threat posed by Islamists and get together to do something about it? Calls for confrontation with Islamist movements, demands that we ‘Punch an Islamist’, in the same way American leftists have promoted ‘Punch a Nazi’? No.

On the contrary, we are encouraged to be sad about Islamist attacks but never active in relation to them. ‘Don’t look back in anger.’ Consider how swiftly the Manchester barbarism has drifted from Britain’s national consciousness. It wasn’t even three months ago, and yet this slaughter of 22 pop fans by a man who subscribed to an ideological worldview that is as ugly, if not uglier, as that spouted by American white nationalists is fading from national memory. That is a direct consequence of the cowardly, apolitical, even anti-political climate that is always cultivated after Islamist attacks: we are always invited to ‘move on’ because dwelling on such extremist violence would raise too many awkward questions.

The difference is alarming: Charlottesville was instantly institutionalised as a turning-point event. It was folded, in mere days, into a 21st-century political narrative about a resurgent far right (an overblown threat) and the need for a more serious, anti-fascist left. It became a morality tale, swiftly. After Islamist attacks, in contrast, we’re openly warned against doing anything like that. Don’t look for lessons. Don’t make it a moral issue. Don’t politicise it or get too angry about it, because apparently that’s what ISIS wants. Mourn it and carry on with life as normal — that’ll show ’em. This urge to moralise small neo-Nazi protests in the US while de-moralising, depoliticising and fundamentally defusing the problem of Islamist extremism, even though this extremism is a far more destabilising force, has to be explained. What drives this alarming double standard?

It’s fear. Cultural fear. Fear of us, the masses, and what we will get up to if society green-lights an honest discussion about the Islamist problem. And fear for Muslims, whom too many on the left infantilise and treat as incapable of hearing robust discussion about problems in their communities. (It has always struck me that there is more racism in certain leftists’ desire to protect Muslims from testy debate than there is in alt-righters’ misplaced fury with all Muslims: at least the latter treats Muslims as adults, open to criticism, rather than as children who need strictures against Islamophobia to guard their fragile feelings.)

And so where leftists insist after Islamist attacks that we mustn’t hold all Muslims responsible, or make such violence into a focal point for politics, or get too angry, after Charlottesville they said the precise opposite. ‘White culture’ did this. Let’s organise our political lives around it. Let’s get angry, really angry. They’re more comfortable confronting handfuls of American neo-Nazis because they can do so without engaging the bovine, untrustworthy little people and without threatening to raise questions about the ideology of multiculturalism and its divisive, increasingly violent impact in Europe.

They have declared a ridiculous, self-flattering war on neo-Nazism precisely as a distraction from the real problems facing Western society today, to which they have no answers, and are uncomfortable even with the questions.

SOURCE





Mob Rule Prevails in Toppling of Confederate Statue



Following the ugly incident that took place in Charlottesville, Virginia, this past weekend, an unruly mob took out its anger on a century-old statue in North Carolina.

It is a perfect example of how tribal and identity politics are raging out of control in America, and how radicals will continue to ratchet up their tactics to match one another.

While the media spent its time connecting riots to the political right, the hard left continued to step up its tactics to promote social discord, as it has been doing for years.

On Monday afternoon, a crowd of people in an "Emergency Durham Protest" marched down Durham’s Main Street, then made its way to the Durham County Courthouse.

The Herald Sun reported that organizations like the "Triangle People’s Assembly, Workers World Party, Industrial Workers of the World, Democratic Socialists of America, and the Antifa movement" were at the rally.

One of the participants, Eva Panjwani of the Workers World Party Durham, said in an interview:

This is really an opportunity, this moment of Charlottesville, to see what side of history we are choosing to side with. This is not a call to make someone to feel guilty or ashamed. This is a call to say this is an ask from people of color to say which side are you on.

"We need to shun passive, white liberalism," Panjwani said.

The larger group was comprised of people demonstrating with various left-wing slogans such as a "No Trump, No KKK, No Racist USA" banner, pro-socialist Che Guevara shirts, and numerous odes to abolishing capitalism.

One individual held a sign that said, "Cops and clan go hand in hand," as the group marched past police officers.

The crowd gathered in front of the courthouse and decided to target a statue that was created in memoriam to "the boys who wore the gray." That is, the North Carolina soldiers who fought for the Confederate Army in the Civil War.

What followed was a scene reminiscent of the French Revolution or the war in Iraq.

The rage-filled protesters tore down the statue and proceeded to kick and desecrate it. The surging mass of people hooted and hollered as individuals took turns spitting on and flipping off the generic visage of a young Southern soldier.

The act of vandalism continued unabated, as authorities stood by and watched. Durham Police put out a statement saying that they did not interfere with the toppling because it happened on "county property, where county law enforcement officials were staffed."

In the aftermath, some of the protesters took pictures in front of the crumpled-up bronze statue that had been pulverized in the fall.

Targeting this statue was seemingly an odd choice. It portrayed no individual specifically and was erected as a tribute in 1924 to the young boys, by that time old men, who had donned the uniform of the failed Confederate rebellion.

However, the attack was fitting as a mirror to the "alt-right" march that had taken place at the foot of a Gen. Robert E. Lee statue in Charlottesville. The individuals portrayed by the monuments were simply irrelevant.

This isn’t a battle over ideas or the Confederacy’s place in American history, it’s sheer and mindless identity politics.

American towns and cities are now increasingly being besieged by agitators who flaunt the law, direct their hate toward fellow citizens, and openly attack the crucial principles at the heart of the American way of life.

The resounding message that these events send is that in 2017, it’s impossible for this country to accept people of different creeds and points of views. You are either on the "right side of history," as President Barack Obama said, or you are on the wrong side.

The narrative is increasingly join us, or be crushed.

Perhaps the protesters should pay more attention to what happened in our Civil War, which claimed more lives than all of our other wars combined.

Perhaps they should study the leaders who, however imperfectly, tried to bind regions and people together to move on from a civil feud that pitted brother against brother and American against American.

And perhaps they should have studied the people, like Lee and President Abraham Lincoln, who tried to piece the shattered puzzle of American nationhood back together.

Alas, those concepts were lost in a sordid trampling of an old, barely noticed statue. Unless leaders pay increased devotion to denouncing and taking action against these lawless demonstrations, mob rule is here to stay.

SOURCE





"Allahu Akhbar" now heard in Finland

The attacker was described by police as "a youngish man with a foreign background."

Stab victim Hassan Zubier, 45, was slashed repeatedly as he tried to help an injured woman who died in his arms during yesterday's bloody rampage in Turku, Finland.

'We were strolling around the square when we suddenly heard someone screaming. I turned around. I saw a guy stabbing a woman with a knife while she lies on the ground,' Mr Zubier told Swedish daily Expressen from the Turku hospital.

'I rushed to help her and tried to stop the blood flow. Others gave her heart and lung assistance.'

The attacker then turned to slash at Zubier's girlfriend. He said that he rushed between her and the armed man and was stabbed twice.

Mr Zubier, a Swedish national, said that the attacker then moved away and he returned to the injured woman who he believed was dying on the ground.

'I try to stop the violent bleeding from her throat. Then he stabs me with the knife again. The woman is so badly injured and she dies in my arms,' he said.

Mr Zubier said that he has been stabbed in his neck, in his chest, at the side of the chest and on the back of his shoulders.

'My left hand is seriously injured. A nerve is injured, it is not certain that they can save the arm. I'm going to the MRI now, the doctors will then decide what to do.'

Mr Zubier and his girlfriend were on holiday in Turku. They were planning to have taken a cruise ship back to Stockholm on Friday night. 

Two people have been killed and at least eight wounded after a man armed with a knife stabbed several people on Market Square before he was shot by armed police.

Eight people were taken to hospital following the stabbings, including a woman who was pushing a pram. Some of the victims are in a critical condition.

Within three minutes of the attack beginning, police shot a man in the leg before arresting him.

They are now on the hunt for more potential suspects.

At least one person was pictured lying bleeding and motionless on the pavement among other victims in the southwestern city of Turku.

Chief of police Seppo Kolehmainen said the attack was not currently being treated as terror-related, but said such a motive cannot be ruled out.

The attack began at 4.02pm, officials said, with the suspect arrested at 4.05pm.

All of the victims in the attack are adults, Turko hospital chief said. 

President of Finland Sauli Niinisto speaks to journalists as he arrives for a prayer service at the Turku Cathedral for the victims of the stabbing attack which began today at 16:02

Police and emergency services rushed to Turku in response to the attack. 'International terrorism' has not been ruled out as a motive, the police chief for the area said

Finnish police said they were reinforcing security nationwide, with additional patrols and boosted surveillance following the stabbings.

Interior Minister Paula Risikko told Helsingin Sanomat she did not yet know whether the attack was related to terrorism.

The arrested suspect is being treated in hospital.

Speaking to US broadcaster CNN, Kent Svensson, 44, said: 'This guy had this huge knife in his hand - and several times he was stabbing this person. People were just running everywhere.

'This guy was just constantly stabbing. He was just turning around, flinging his knife everywhere. There were people lying everywhere. 'People were screaming and running.

'We were just talking about what happened in Barcelona. 'We thought we were safe in Finland. And then this happens.

'The woman was on the ground. She was dead. It's just awful. 'I can just see this huge knife in his hand and he's just stabbing.'  

In a video purporting to show the aftermath of the attack, people can be seen fleeing in the street.

It was also reported that a man was heard screaming 'Allahu Akbar' during the attack, but others have stressed this was merely misheard Finnish.

Turun Sanomat said police were inspecting departing trains and buses. 

'The government is following the situation in Turku closely and a police operation is under way,' tweeted Prime Minister Juha Sippila ahead of a cabinet meeting.

'Police are looking for other possible perpetrators of the crime in Turku,' security forces wrote on Twitter. 'They ask the population to leave and avoid central Turku.' 

According to local media site Uutiset, police tweeted: 'Several people stabbed in central Turku. People are requested to avoid the city centre.' Moments later a suspect was shot in the leg and arrested.     

Ilta-Sanomat, meanwhile, is reporting that people in the street tried to prevent the attack as it was going on.  One is reported to have used a baseball bat to strike the attacker. 

The attack comes just a day after at least 14 people were killed and over a hundred hurt in terror attacks in Catalonia.

SOURCE





The Group That Got Ignored in Charlottesville

The "alt-right" is evil. White supremacism is evil. Neo-Nazism is evil.

But the media have remained largely silent about another group: Antifa. Antifa is a loosely connected band of anti-capitalist protesters generally on the far left who dub themselves "anti-fascist" after their compatriots in Europe. They've been around in the United States since the 1990s, protesting globalization and burning trash cans at World Trade Organization meetings. But they've kicked into high gear over the past two years: They engaged in vandalism in violence, forcing the cancelation of a speech by alt-right popularizer Milo Yiannopoulos at the University of California, Berkeley; a few months later, they attacked alt-right demonstrators in Berkeley; they attacked alt-right demonstrators in Sacramento, California, leading to a bloody street fight; they threw projectiles at police during President Trump's inauguration; they attacked pro-Trump free-speech demonstrators in Seattle last weekend. They always label their opponents "fascists" in order to justify their violence.

In Charlottesville, Antifa engaged in street violence with the alt-right racists. As in Weimar, Germany, fascists flying the swastika engaged in hand-to-hand combat with Antifa members flying the communist red. And yet, the media declared that any negative coverage granted to Antifa would detract from the obvious evils of the alt-right. Sheryl Gay Stolberg of The New York Times tweeted in the midst of the violence, "The hard left seemed as hate-filled as alt-right. I saw club-wielding 'antifa' beating white nationalists being led out of the park." After receiving blowback from the left, Stolberg then corrected herself. She said: "Rethinking this. Should have said violent, not hate-filled. They were standing up to hate."

Or perhaps Antifa is a hateful group itself. But that wouldn't fit the convenient narrative Antifa promotes and the media buy: that the sole threat to the republic comes from the racist right. Perhaps that's why the media ignored the events in Sacramento and Berkeley and Seattle — to point out the evils of Antifa might detract from the evils of the alt-right.

That sort of biased coverage only engenders more militancy from the alt-right, which feels it must demonstrate openly and repeatedly to "stand up to Antifa." Which, of course, prompts Antifa to violence.

Here's the moral solution, as always: Condemn violence and evil wherever it occurs. The racist philosophy of the alt-right is evil. The violence of the alt-right is evil. The communist philosophy of Antifa is evil. So is the violence of Antifa. If we are to survive as a republic, we must call out Nazis but not punch them; we must stop providing cover to anarchists and communists who seek to hide behind self-proclaimed righteousness to participate in violence. Otherwise, we won't be an honest or a free society.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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Friday, August 18, 2017



Misusing Robert E. Lee

On April 12, 1861, the day secessionists in South Carolina bombarded Ft. Sumter to fire the shots that opened the American Civil War, then-Colonel Robert E. Lee was perhaps America's most accomplished soldier

Lee had served with distinction in the Mexican War, leading a reconnaissance patrol that discovered the means by which the Americans defeated the Mexicans at the battle of Cerro Gordo. He had served as Superintendent of West Point, had supervised the construction of numerous coastal fortifications, and most recently, Lee Robert E. Lee Statuecommanded the forces that captured abolitionist John Brown and the gang that had attempted to seize the government arsenal at Harpers Ferry, Virginia and start a slave rebellion.

As America moved inexorably toward Civil War, General Winfield Scott, the highest ranking American general, and a hero of the Mexican War, told President Abraham Lincoln that he wished Lee to command the Union army. Lee, who on March 28, 1861, had ignored an offer of command in the Confederate army was offered the command on April 18, 1861, just six days after Ft. Sumter.

Lee refused the command on the grounds that he was a Virginian and owed his first allegiance to the state he believed was a sovereign entity with the right to stay in or leave the Union as it saw fit. He would, he said, not make war on the Union, but he would defend the state of his birth.

When Virginia seceded from the Union Lee said, "I shall never bear arms against the Union, but it may be necessary for me to carry a musket in the defense of my native state, Virginia, in which case I shall not prove recreant to my duty."

Why would Lee choose the state of Virginia over the United States of America?

While Lee espused the paternalistic attitudes many Nineteenth Century Americans felt toward Africans, it certainly wasn't because he believed slavery was just; he wrote in 1856, "There are few, I believe, in this enlightened age, who will not acknowledge that slavery as an institution is a moral and political evil."

Lee wasn't pro-slavery, he believed, as did many others of his day, that the United States of America was merely an association of sovereign states that could, if they chose, leave it or dissolve it.

That this view had been forcefully rejected by his fellow Southerner President Andrew Jackson who wrote in a proclamation rebutting an earlier move by South Carolina to nullify federal law, "I consider, then, the power to annul a law of the United States, assumed by one State, incompatible with the existence of the Union, contradicted expressly by the letter of the Constitution, unauthorized by its spirit, inconsistent with every principle on which It was founded, and destructive of the great object for which it was formed," did not back in 1861 make it any less persuasive to many in the South and even some in the North.

We all know of Lee's legendary conduct of the Civil War campaigns in defense of Virginia, his defeat at Gettysburg and his eventual surrender to General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House, Virginia.

Were Lee's erroneous view of the Union and the Constitution and his conduct of the Confederate armies during the Civil War all we knew about Robert E. Lee there would be little controversy in removing his statues from their places of honor.

But it isn't what Lee did before and during the Civil War that makes him such an important figure in American history - and one that should be honored - it is what he did after the Civil War that earned him the memorials erected to his memory and a place in history that should be honored by all.

When Lee surrendered at Appomattox he also signed a parole document swearing upon his honor not to bear arms against the United States or to "tender aid to its enemies." Lee's surrender and his immediate parole were essential in preventing the Civil War from continuing as a destructive guerilla war that would have continued to rend the country indefinitely.

General Grant's terms provided that all officers and men were to be pardoned, and they would be sent home with their private property - most important, the horses, which could be used for a late spring planting. Officers would keep their side arms, and Lee's starving men would be given Union rations.

General Grant told his officers, "The war is over. The Rebels are our countrymen again." Although scattered resistance continued for several weeks, for all practical purposes the Civil War had come to an end.*

Just six weeks after Lee's surrender at Appomattox President Andrew Johnson issued a Proclamation of Amnesty and Pardon to persons who had participated in the rebellion against the United States. However, there were certain excepted classes and members of those classes had to make special application to the President.

Robert E. Lee was among those excepted, and there were plenty of people in the North, including members of Congress, who wanted to see him tried and executed for treason.

However, there was one man who refused to countenance such a course of action; General Ulysses S. Grant. Grant rightly understood that fulfilling the terms of his parole of Robert E. Lee were essential to healing the wounds of the Civil War.

Just two months after the surrender at Appomattox Lee sent an application to Grant and wrote to President Johnson on June 13, 1865:

"Being excluded from the provisions of amnesty & pardon contained in the proclamation of the 29th Ulto; I hereby apply for the benefits, & full restoration of all rights & privileges extended to those included in its terms. I graduated at the Mil. Academy at West Point in June 1829. Resigned from the U.S. Army April '61. Was a General in the Confederate Army, & included in the surrender of the Army of N. Va. 9 April '65."

On October 2, 1865, the same day that Lee was inaugurated as president of Washington College in Lexington, Virginia, he signed his Amnesty Oath, thereby complying fully with the provision of Johnson's proclamation.

Lee's greatest legacy is not his campaigns, which are still taught at military institutions around the world, but his contribution to national reconciliation.

Although he had ostensibly retired from the national spotlight, Lee became a voice of moderation and patient compliance. In his public letters, a number of which were reprinted in newspapers, he urged that "all should unite in honest efforts to obliterate the effects of war and to restore the blessings of peace."

Lee vowed to do "all in my power to encourage our people to set manfully to work to restore the country, to rebuild their homes and churches, to educate their children, and to remain with their states, their friends and countrymen."

Thus, when Congress ordered the drafting of new constitutions in the former Confederate states and disgruntled southerners contemplated a boycott of the system, Lee announced that it was "the duty of the [southern] people to accept the situation fully" and that every man should not only "prepare himself to vote" but also "prepare his friends, white and colored, to vote and to vote rightly."**

Lee's code of conduct demanded submission to federal authority. With characteristic self-discipline, he put the past behind him and moved forward. Many southerners proved willing to follow Lee's example and through them the United States was not only reunited, but rebuilt into the preeminent military and economic power it is today.

Erasing Robert E. Lee from history - or celebrating him as a symbol of "white nationalism" - is a grave error; not only does it distort history to suit the purposes of elements in society that Lee abhorred, it misuses one of the greatest symbols of the social compact that reunited the country after four years of brother against brother bloodshed and hatred.

SOURCE






How to Break Silicon Valley's Anti-Free-Speech Monopoly

In the wake of the outrageous and possibly illegal firing of James Damore for writing a memo that pushed back against Google's "politically correct monoculture that maintains its hold by shaming dissenters into silence," the company has been the focus of an eminently deserved torrent of criticism. A fair bit of this critique has gone beyond the particular situation of Mr. Damore to look at the general hostility of the technology industry to conservatives and conservative thought. Unfortunately, what has been lacking from almost all of these cris de coeur is a strategy regarding what to do about it.

    Fortunately, there are some things we can do that could turn the tables on Silicon Valley's leftist censorship and restore free speech to the Internet. But first, some background.

    The evidence of Silicon Valley's hostility to the Right is everywhere. Prominent conservatives from Michelle Malkin to William Jacobson to Dennis Prager (just to name a few NRO contributors) - and an even greater proportion of those whose politics lean farther to the right, many of whom do not have access to mainstream media and rely on social media to fund their work - have seen themselves banned from major Internet platforms or had their content censored or demonetized. In most cases they are not even given grounds for their punishment or means of appealing it. While some more "mainstream" conservatives may not feel excessively troubled by the banning of more provocative voices farther to the right, in taking this attitude they make a tactical, strategic, and moral mistake. They do not understand how the Left operates. When voices farther to the right are removed, mainstream conservatives become the new "far-right extremists" - and they will be banned with equal alacrity.

    In my scholarly work, I write primarily about energy policy, in which electric utilities are usually referred to as "natural monopolies." Government regulation of these utilities has traditionally been justified to avoid having multiple companies building redundant and costly infrastructure and distribution assets.

    For conservatives, the time has begun to think of some major Web services - in particular Facebook, Google, YouTube, and Twitter - in the same way. Yes, they are private companies, just as many utilities are. And yes, these Internet monopolies do not have the same physical-infrastructure advantages that electric-utility monopolies have. But because of their network effects, their dominance and monopoly power are in many ways even starker.

    If I don't like my utility I can put solar panels on my roof and an inverter and battery in my garage, and I can still get power. But if I can't get access to the 2 billion people on Facebook because Facebook doesn't like my politics, my rights of free expression are greatly curtailed.

    And despite the fact that these are private companies, they may be violating free-speech law, as Internet-law professor Mark Grabowski has detailed in the Washington Examiner. In Packingham v. North Carolina last month, the Supreme Court unanimously struck down a North Carolina law barring sex offenders from accessing social-media platforms, with the Court repeatedly and strongly emphasizing that social media are now a crucial part of the public square. As Grabowski notes, California's state constitution protects free speech in some privately owned spaces, such as shopping malls. Arguably, that protection should now extend to social media - and all the major tech companies are headquartered in California.

    But even if such arguments are not brought before the courts, the market-dominance or monopoly issue still remains a potent justification for regulation. The value of a social network such as Facebook grows proportionally with the square of the number of people connected to it (a finding known as Metcalfe's law, promulgated by networking pioneer Bob Metcalfe almost 40 years ago). Eighty-nine percent of U.S. Internet users are on Facebook. Twitter has more than 300 million users and plays a critical gatekeeper and distribution role in the high-speed promulgation of content and news. Google owns 88 percent of total U.S. search revenue. YouTube is similarly dominant in video.

    Given their market-dominant positions, these companies control a substantial share of the information that Americans consume and therefore should be run in a politically neutral fashion. Instead, they have doubled down on politically motivated censorship - demonetizing right-wing content providers (unilaterally declaring their content to be unfit to have commercials) or even banning them while doing nothing about politically favored ones.

    But there are solutions to this abuse of monopolistic power.

    These solutions need not be excessively burdensome or intrusive. They could focus on creating a simple regulatory regime that would ensure these monopolistic companies:


  1.         Do not censor any content that is compliant with the First Amendment to the United States Constitution; and

  2.    

  3.         Do not fully demonetize any user's content, pulling ads from posts only when the advertiser has requested such action be taken.


    In addition, going forward, these companies' records should be liable to be subpoenaed by the appropriate congressional committees to ensure that they have not abused their monopoly powers in ways that disfavor relevant content for political reasons, which they almost certainly do today. In the electric-utility industry, laws and regulatory bodies exist to ensure that the owners of transmission and distribution networks cannot arbitrarily discriminate against certain generators. The same if not greater standards should apply to speech.

    Such a proposal is hardly pie-in-the-sky - in fact, a version of this idea has reportedly been pushed privately by the White House's Steve Bannon, who, not coincidentally, has been among the most Internet-savvy voices on the right.

    Even before the Damore firing there were plenty of ominous signs. YouTube had promised "tougher treatment to videos that aren't illegal but have been flagged by users as potential violations of our policies on hate speech and violent extremism." The supposed focus of this effort was videos promoting terrorism, but right-wing content providers were immediately affected, with their channels banned or demonetized in many instances.

    The stakes of inaction are clear. In a major profile in the The New York Times Magazine earlier this month, YouTube was referred to as "The New Talk Radio" providing right-wing and conservative content not available in mainstream sources and as a result serving as a rallying point for those on the right. The Times highlights Lauren Southern, Paul Joseph Watson, Ezra Levant, and Stephen Crowder as among the dangerous rightists on YouTube. Sophisticated watchers of the Right will recognize that these individuals belong to very different groups with different relationships to the conservative mainstream. But they should all be able to speak freely.

    While I understand and share the concern about allowing government interference in private businesses, even those with monopoly power, we should not allow the conservative ship to be wrecked on the shoals of philosophical abstraction. What is needed is not regulation to restrict speech but regulation specifically to allow speech - regulation put on monopolist and market-dominant companies that have abused their positions repeatedly. Regulating these monopolies for the purpose of protecting free speech is a far different matter than regulating them to restrict free speech. To argue otherwise, to quote William F. Buckley in a different context, "is the equivalent of saying that the man who pushes an old lady into the path of a hurtling bus is not to be distinguished from the man who pushes an old lady out of the path of a hurtling bus: on the grounds that, after all, in both cases someone is pushing old ladies around."

    As bans and financial threats have become increasingly frequent, some on the right have moved from Facebook and Twitter to new platforms such as Gab. But while I wish Gab well and think it is vital that the Right build its own social-media ecosystem outside of leftist control, that is no substitute for the ability to speak to and interact with the mainstream - where people who might not be exposed to the ideas of the Right can be engaged with and persuaded. We need to be able to tweet to the unconverted, not just the choir.

    YouTube promotes its "Creators for Change" program by writing that "no matter what kind of videos we make, we all have the power to help create the world we want." But if Silicon Valley has its way, that won't be true for conservatives. I personally know some executives at these companies who are politically open-minded. But taken as a whole, I don't trust them to offer a free, open, and politically unbiased platform. And neither should anyone else.

    That's why we need to make sure that these monopolies and platforms - which have been shielded with their privileges, such as the Safe Harbor provisions of the 1998 Digital Millenium Copyright Act - respect the free speech of all Americans, not just those who agree with them. This administration can drain the Silicon Valley swamp and create change. To do it is going to require investigations from conservative journalists, legislation from Congress, regulation from appropriate regulatory bodies, and ultimately the support of President Trump.

    The notion that social-media companies are utilities (and therefore might be regulated like utilities) did not originate in the fevered minds of right-wing policy analysts. For many years Mark Zuckerberg described Facebook as "a social utility" made up of "lots of separate networks." He also described Facebook as "more like a government than a traditional company."

    "What we're trying to do is just make it really efficient for people to communicate, get information, and share information. We always try to emphasize the utility component," Zuckerberg said. But increasingly these platforms are making it as hard as possible for those on the right to communicate and share information.

    Facebook, Google, and their ilk are indeed utilities, utilities that deliver public benefits and not just private ones. It's time for Congress and the Trump administration to start treating them that way.

SOURCE





Trump's Interior Department Won't Be Removing Confederate Monuments From Civil War Battlefields

The Interior Department won't be removing monuments to Confederate soldiers at national battlefields that are "an important part of our country's history," according to a spokesman.

"The National Park Service is committed to safeguarding these memorials while simultaneously educating visitors holistically and objectively about the actions, motivations and causes of the soldiers and states they commemorate," spokesman Jeremy Barnum told E&E News.

National Park statements come after a woman was killed counter-protesting a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. The city voted to remove a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.

A man driving a Dodge Challenger drove into a crowd of counter protesters, killing one and injuring 19 others. That man, 20-year-old James Alex Fields, has been charged with second-degree murder.

The incident has only spurred the movement to remove Confederate monuments and rename schools, buildings and highways that had been named after Confederate politicians and generals.

President Donald Trump stoked the controversy even more by not explicitly calling out white supremacist groups in his initial condemnation of Saturday's violent clash. Trump issued a more forceful follow-up statement, but got into a fight with reporters at a news conference Tuesday.

"George Washington as a slave owner," Trump said. "So will George Washington now lose his status? Are we going to take down statues to George Washington? How about Thomas Jefferson?"

"Are we going to take down his statue because he was a major slave owner. Are we going to take down his statue?" Trump said

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said he supports Trump "in uniting our communities and prosecuting the criminals to the fullest extent of the law."

"The racism, bigotry and hate perpetrated by violent white supremacist groups has no place in America," Zinke told E&E News. "It does not represent what I spent 23 years defending in the United States military and what millions of people around the globe have died for. We must respond to hate with love, unity and justice."

The National Park Service maintains numerous monuments to Confederate soldiers at battlefield sites across the country.

For example, Gettysburg, Penn., has 12 monuments to Confederate soldiers. The Battle of Antietam, which took place near Sharpsburg, Md., in 1862, has six Confederate monuments.

A Gettysburg National Military Park spokeswoman told The Evening Sun Wednesday they were not removing Confederate monuments to those who fought at the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863.

"These memorials, erected predominantly in the early and mid-20th century, are an important part of the cultural landscape," Katie Lawhon said.

Zinke told reporters in July that battlefield monuments were worth preserving for their historical value.

"Don't rewrite history," Zinke said Antietam National Battlefield. "Understand it for what it is and teach our kids the importance of looking at our magnificent history as a country and why we are what we are."

SOURCE





The Rise of the Violent Left

Violence begets violence. Antifa’s activists say they’re battling burgeoning authoritarianism on the American right. Are they fueling it instead?

By PETER BEINART, a liberal

Since 1907, Portland, Oregon, has hosted an annual Rose Festival. Since 2007, the festival had included a parade down 82nd Avenue. Since 2013, the Republican Party of Multnomah County, which includes Portland, had taken part. This April, all of that changed.

In the days leading up to the planned parade, a group called the Direct Action Alliance declared, “Fascists plan to march through the streets,” and warned, “Nazis will not march through Portland unopposed.” The alliance said it didn’t object to the Multnomah GOP itself, but to “fascists” who planned to infiltrate its ranks. Yet it also denounced marchers with “Trump flags” and “red maga hats” who could “normalize support for an orange man who bragged about sexually harassing women and who is waging a war of hate, racism and prejudice.” A second group, Oregon Students Empowered, created a Facebook page called “Shut down fascism! No nazis in Portland!”

Next, the parade’s organizers received an anonymous email warning that if “Trump supporters” and others who promote “hateful rhetoric” marched, “we will have two hundred or more people rush into the parade … and drag and push those people out.” When Portland police said they lacked the resources to provide adequate security, the organizers canceled the parade. It was a sign of things to come.

For progressives, Donald Trump is not just another Republican president. Seventy-six percent of Democrats, according to a Suffolk poll from last September, consider him a racist. Last March, according to a YouGov survey, 71 percent of Democrats agreed that his campaign contained “fascist undertones.” All of which raises a question that is likely to bedevil progressives for years to come: If you believe the president of the United States is leading a racist, fascist movement that threatens the rights, if not the lives, of vulnerable minorities, how far are you willing to go to stop it?

In Washington, D.C., the response to that question centers on how members of Congress can oppose Trump’s agenda, on how Democrats can retake the House of Representatives, and on how and when to push for impeachment. But in the country at large, some militant leftists are offering a very different answer. On Inauguration Day, a masked activist punched the white-supremacist leader Richard Spencer. In February, protesters violently disrupted UC Berkeley’s plans to host a speech by Milo Yiannopoulos, a former Breitbart.com editor. In March, protesters pushed and shoved the controversial conservative political scientist Charles Murray when he spoke at Middlebury College, in Vermont.

As far-flung as these incidents were, they have something crucial in common. Like the organizations that opposed the Multnomah County Republican Party’s participation in the 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade, these activists appear to be linked to a movement called “antifa,” which is short for antifascist or Anti-Fascist Action. The movement’s secrecy makes definitively cataloging its activities difficult, but this much is certain: Antifa’s power is growing. And how the rest of the activist left responds will help define its moral character in the Trump age.

Antifa traces its roots to the 1920s and ’30s, when militant leftists battled fascists in the streets of Germany, Italy, and Spain. When fascism withered after World War II, antifa did too. But in the ’70s and ’80s, neo-Nazi skinheads began to infiltrate Britain’s punk scene. After the Berlin Wall fell, neo-Nazism also gained prominence in Germany. In response, a cadre of young leftists, including many anarchists and punk fans, revived the tradition of street-level antifascism.

In the late ’80s, left-wing punk fans in the United States began following suit, though they initially called their groups Anti-Racist Action, on the theory that Americans would be more familiar with fighting racism than fascism. According to Mark Bray, the author of the forthcoming Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook, these activists toured with popular alternative bands in the ’90s, trying to ensure that neo-Nazis did not recruit their fans. In 2002, they disrupted a speech by the head of the World Church of the Creator, a white-supremacist group in Pennsylvania; 25 people were arrested in the resulting brawl.

Antifa’s violent tactics have elicited substantial support from the mainstream left.

By the 2000s, as the internet facilitated more transatlantic dialogue, some American activists had adopted the name antifa. But even on the militant left, the movement didn’t occupy the spotlight. To most left-wing activists during the Clinton, Bush, and Obama years, deregulated global capitalism seemed like a greater threat than fascism.

Trump has changed that. For antifa, the result has been explosive growth. According to NYC Antifa, the group’s Twitter following nearly quadrupled in the first three weeks of January alone. (By summer, it exceeded 15,000.) Trump’s rise has also bred a new sympathy for antifa among some on the mainstream left. “Suddenly,” noted the antifa-aligned journal It’s Going Down, “anarchists and antifa, who have been demonized and sidelined by the wider Left have been hearing from liberals and Leftists, ‘you’ve been right all along.’ ” An article in The Nation argued that “to call Trumpism fascist” is to realize that it is “not well combated or contained by standard liberal appeals to reason.” The radical left, it said, offers “practical and serious responses in this political moment.”

Those responses sometimes spill blood. Since antifa is heavily composed of anarchists, its activists place little faith in the state, which they consider complicit in fascism and racism. They prefer direct action: They pressure venues to deny white supremacists space to meet. They pressure employers to fire them and landlords to evict them. And when people they deem racists and fascists manage to assemble, antifa’s partisans try to break up their gatherings, including by force.

Such tactics have elicited substantial support from the mainstream left. When the masked antifa activist was filmed assaulting Spencer on Inauguration Day, another piece in The Nation described his punch as an act of “kinetic beauty.” Slate ran an approving article about a humorous piano ballad that glorified the assault. Twitter was inundated with viral versions of the video set to different songs, prompting the former Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau to tweet, “I don’t care how many different songs you set Richard Spencer being punched to, I’ll laugh at every one.”

The violence is not directed only at avowed racists like Spencer: In June of last year, demonstrators—at least some of whom were associated with antifa—punched and threw eggs at people exiting a Trump rally in San Jose, California. An article in It’s Going Down celebrated the “righteous beatings.”

Antifascists call such actions defensive. Hate speech against vulnerable minorities, they argue, leads to violence against vulnerable minorities. But Trump supporters and white nationalists see antifa’s attacks as an assault on their right to freely assemble, which they in turn seek to reassert. The result is a level of sustained political street warfare not seen in the U.S. since the 1960s. A few weeks after the attacks in San Jose, for instance, a white-supremacist leader announced that he would host a march in Sacramento to protest the attacks at Trump rallies. Anti-Fascist Action Sacramento called for a counterdemonstration; in the end, at least 10 people were stabbed.

A similar cycle has played out at UC Berkeley. In February, masked antifascists broke store windows and hurled Molotov cocktails and rocks at police during a rally against the planned speech by Yiannopoulos. After the university canceled the speech out of what it called “concern for public safety,” white nationalists announced a “March on Berkeley” in support of “free speech.” At that rally, a 41-year-old man named Kyle Chapman, who was wearing a baseball helmet, ski goggles, shin guards, and a mask, smashed an antifa activist over the head with a wooden post. Suddenly, Trump supporters had a viral video of their own. A far-right crowdfunding site soon raised more than $80,000 for Chapman’s legal defense. (In January, the same site had offered a substantial reward for the identity of the antifascist who had punched Spencer.) A politicized fight culture is emerging, fueled by cheerleaders on both sides. As James Anderson, an editor at It’s Going Down, told Vice, “This shit is fun.”

Portland offers perhaps the clearest glimpse of where all of this can lead. The Pacific Northwest has long attracted white supremacists, who have seen it as a haven from America’s multiracial East and South. In 1857, Oregon (then a federal territory) banned African Americans from living there. By the 1920s, it boasted the highest Ku Klux Klan membership rate of any state.

In 1988, neo-Nazis in Portland killed an Ethiopian immigrant with a baseball bat. Shortly thereafter, notes Alex Reid Ross, a lecturer at Portland State University and the author of Against the Fascist Creep, anti-Nazi skinheads formed a chapter of Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice. Before long, the city also had an Anti-Racist Action group.

Now, in the Trump era, Portland has become a bastion of antifascist militancy. Masked protesters smashed store windows during multiday demonstrations following Trump’s election. In early April, antifa activists threw smoke bombs into a “Rally for Trump and Freedom” in the Portland suburb of Vancouver, Washington. A local paper said the ensuing melee resembled a mosh pit.

When antifascists forced the cancellation of the 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade, Trump supporters responded with a “March for Free Speech.” Among those who attended was Jeremy Christian, a burly ex-con draped in an American flag, who uttered racial slurs and made Nazi salutes. A few weeks later, on May 25, a man believed to be Christian was filmed calling antifa “a bunch of punk bitches.”

The next day, Christian boarded a light-rail train and began yelling that “colored people” were ruining the city. He fixed his attention on two teenage girls, one African American and the other wearing a hijab, and told them “to go back to Saudi Arabia” or “kill themselves.” As the girls retreated to the back of the train, three men interposed themselves between Christian and his targets. “Please,” one said, “get off this train.” Christian stabbed all three. One bled to death on the train. One was declared dead at a local hospital. One survived.

The cycle continued. Nine days after the attack, on June 4, Trump supporters hosted another Portland rally, this one featuring Chapman, who had gained fame with his assault on the antifascist in Berkeley. Antifa activists threw bricks until the police dispersed them with stun grenades and tear gas.

What’s eroding in Portland is the quality Max Weber considered essential to a functioning state: a monopoly on legitimate violence. As members of a largely anarchist movement, antifascists don’t want the government to stop white supremacists from gathering. They want to do so themselves, rendering the government impotent. With help from other left-wing activists, they’re already having some success at disrupting government. Demonstrators have interrupted so many city-council meetings that in February, the council met behind locked doors. In February and March, activists protesting police violence and the city’s investments in the Dakota Access Pipeline hounded Mayor Ted Wheeler so persistently at his home that he took refuge in a hotel. The fateful email to parade organizers warned, “The police cannot stop us from shutting down roads.”

All of this fuels the fears of Trump supporters, who suspect that liberal bastions are refusing to protect their right to free speech. Joey Gibson, a Trump supporter who organized the June 4 Portland rally, told me that his “biggest pet peeve is when mayors have police stand down … They don’t want conservatives to be coming together and speaking.” To provide security at the rally, Gibson brought in a far-right militia called the Oath Keepers. In late June, James Buchal, the chair of the Multnomah County Republican Party, announced that it too would use militia members for security, because “volunteers don’t feel safe on the streets of Portland.”

Antifa believes it is pursuing the opposite of authoritarianism. Many of its activists oppose the very notion of a centralized state. But in the name of protecting the vulnerable, antifascists have granted themselves the authority to decide which Americans may publicly assemble and which may not. That authority rests on no democratic foundation. Unlike the politicians they revile, the men and women of antifa cannot be voted out of office. Generally, they don’t even disclose their names.

Antifa’s perceived legitimacy is inversely correlated with the government’s. Which is why, in the Trump era, the movement is growing like never before. As the president derides and subverts liberal-democratic norms, progressives face a choice. They can recommit to the rules of fair play, and try to limit the president’s corrosive effect, though they will often fail. Or they can, in revulsion or fear or righteous rage, try to deny racists and Trump supporters their political rights. From Middlebury to Berkeley to Portland, the latter approach is on the rise, especially among young people.

Revulsion, fear, and rage are understandable. But one thing is clear. The people preventing Republicans from safely assembling on the streets of Portland may consider themselves fierce opponents of the authoritarianism growing on the American right. In truth, however, they are its unlikeliest allies.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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Thursday, August 17, 2017



What is a Leftist to do when his opponents are NOT white supremacists?

Easy.  Interpret what the opponent does say to mean what the Leftist wants it to mean.  See below.  His opponents all speak in code, apparently.

There may have been a few actual white supremacists at the Charlotteville rally but all the actual protests heard were about the preservation of an historic statue and the subjugation of American cultural traditions to political correctness.  The marchers were seeking only liberty, not to subjugate anybody -- but Leftists refuse to see that.

It just gives them a huge thrill to think that they are opposing white supremacists.  That would make them the good guys.  They in fact are the supremacists -- Leftist supremacists. They want to put us all into a regulatory straitjacket of their devising -- as the Obama period showed.

Note below that they do not even attempt to show that their opponents are white supremacists.  They just assert it. If there really were white supremacists at the rally, how come that they can't quote anybody there saying clearly one single white supremacist thing?



The coded language of the white supremacist playbook has been displayed in abundance since the Charlottesville, Va., rally exploded in violence Saturday, sowing confusion for the public and masking the sentiment behind some of the responses.

Trump’s initial, vague statement — and even some elements of his more specific denunciation Monday, two days after the protests horrified the nation — heartened extremist groups, who are adept at weaponizing ambiguous language and who cited Trump’s language as vindication.

A prime example of the groups’ rhetorical tactics: a “Free Speech Rally” that may take place Saturday on Boston Common with scheduled speakers who have espoused white supremacist views.

The feel-good title of the rally is intended to divert attention from its purpose of sowing racial discord, said Ian Haney Lopez, a racial justice professor at University of California Berkeley’s law school who has written a book on racial “dog whistles.”

“When you use a phrase like ‘free speech’ to mobilize those who are racially fearful, it switches the conversation. It pretends that the conversation is about the right to express unpopular views — which is a quintessential American value that is enshrined in our Constitution — when in fact, the dynamic is about the expression of ugly views of racial prejudice,’’ Lopez said.

Trump has previously been criticized for repeatedly talking about violence in “inner cities” and his multiple warnings about “thugs,” coded words often used to invoke stereotypical images of black men.

On Saturday, when he first addressed Americans in response to the Charlottesville rallies, he told the country to “cherish our history,” which some took as code that he was weighing in on the side of preserving Confederate memorials.

“That was a very interesting comment,” white nationalist Richard Spencer, a founder of the “alt-right’’ movement told the Times of Israel. “I think there is reason to believe he wants an America where we can look back upon the Civil War as a deeply tragic event, but we can honor great men, like Robert E. Lee.”

Spencer told reporters Monday, after the president’s recent round of remarks, that he did not believe Trump had repudiated white nationalists or the “alt-right’’ movement, which combines elements of nationalism, racism, and populism.

“I don’t think he condemned it, no,” Spencer said. “Did he say white nationalist? ‘Racist’ means an irrational hatred of people. I don’t think he meant any of us.”

Hate groups have long worked to mask their views behind traditionally accepted language, in an attempt to make them more palatable to the public. Instead of denouncing America’s increasing ethnic diversity, they created the phrase “reverse-racism.” The term “alt-right” was born to rebrand white supremacist ideology as Internet friendly and cutting-edge.

The use of dog whistles — a cloaked political message that can only be understood by a particular group, much as dogs can hear whistles of certain frequencies that humans cannot — has become more common.

American politicians have a bipartisan history of deploying coded words to dance around the topic of race. Lee Atwater, the Republican political consultant and former confidant to Ronald Reagan, had his infamous “Southern Strategy,” which he explicitly said was created to disenfranchise black Americans without being called racist.

Reagan, during his presidential campaign of 1976, pushed a narrative that some black women were lazy and manipulating government aid. Hillary Clinton blasted youths in gangs as “super-predators.”

Where Trump stands out, however, is the specific way he emboldens white nationalists, said specialists who study racism in America. Trump “eradicates distinctions” by being uniquely obtuse and coded about his racial messaging, said Geoffrey Nunberg, a linguistics professor at the University of California Berkeley’s School of Information.

Instead of overtly criticizing then-President Barack Obama’s race, Nunberg said, Trump peddled the myth that the first black president was born in Kenya. On Saturday, Trump embraced a false equivalence between the bigots and counter-protesters in Charlottesville, condemning violence on “many sides.”

“There’s a cultural battle that’s going on that Trump is engaged in — and part of that is a redefinition of what is factual,” said Sam Fulwood, a fellow on race at the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank in Washington. “If they can redefine racism as what’s against white men . . . then they’re able to impose their will on society.”

Even in his stronger statement Monday, Trump denounced the Klu Klux Klan along with neo-Nazis and “other hate groups,” which he did not define. Combined with the fact that it took him days to address the criticism, experts said, this is the type of ambiguity that the extremist groups rely upon.

Many people posting in online forums, which often serve as testing grounds for the white nationalist ideology, said they saw hope in Trump’s statements. They pointed to his phrase “other hate groups,” which they interpreted as a nod to their main targets: civil rights organizations who advocate for nonwhites.

“He left the door open,” wrote one user on Reddit.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, the civil rights organization based in Alabama that has tracked extremists groups for years through its blog “Hatewatch,” said extremists groups see Trump as a “champion.”

Part of this is the language he and his close advisers used on the campaign trail and on Twitter, including the sharing of popular white nationalist memes and using phrases such as “cuckservative,” a term combining cuckold and conservative that is used to describe Republicans seen as traitors.

In a post on its home page, the president of the Southern Poverty Law Center, Richard Cohen, said Trump’s responses to Charlottesville will be interpreted by the “alt-right” as a nod of approval, a license that allows them to become more emboldened.

This also happened when Trump, during the 2016 campaign, took days to denounce the endorsements of David Duke, the former grand wizard of the Klu Klux Klan, and the Klan at large.

Cohen said extremist groups saw that and took heart. And he said they would be encouraged again, after the president’s response to Charlottesville.

“I’m sure white supremacists remain reassured,’’ he wrote, “that they have a friend in the White House.”

SOURCE






Left’s wonky moral compass on Trump

Janet Albrechtsen comments from Australia

The US President routinely uses Twitter to slam all manner of people, from Democrats to Republicans to televisions hosts, in 140 characters or less.

His early tweets last weekend lacked their usual clarity when 20-year-old Ohio man James Alex Fields drove his grey Dodge into a crowd in Charlottesville, Virginia, killing a woman and injuring 19 others. Donald Trump should have mustered some fire and fury against the white supremacists, members of the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis who marched on the weekend to anti-Semitic chants and homophobic rants in Charlottes­ville.

While criticism came from both sides of the political aisle, the left’s hysteria over Trump’s response to the Unite the Right rally packs no punch because the eagerness to label evil doesn’t stretch far beyond white supremacists. When it comes to putting a name on Islamic terrorism, the ­reaction is very different. It’s a case of what Mark Steyn calls tilty-headed wankerishness. No naming evil here, only candlelit vigils, hashtag campaigns and inclusive interfaith dialogues.

In March, after 52-year-old Briton Khalid Masood drove a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, the Dean of Westminster, John R. Hall, announced that the nation was bewildered.

“What could possibly ­motivate a man to hire a car and take it from Birmingham to Brighton to London, and then drive it fast at people he had never met, couldn’t possibly know, against whom he had no personal grudge, no reason to hate them, and then run at the gates of the Palace of Westminster to cause another death? It seems likely that we shall never know,” Hall said soon after the attack.

Except we did know. But when it comes to Islamic terrorism, labelling evil gives over to mumbling, fumbling dissembling. It’s a curious lapse in moral clarity given that Islamic terrorists have no time for Christianity, let alone religious freedoms or women and the feminist cause, or homosexuals, let alone LGBTI rights.

The thundering hysteria against Trump after Charlottesville is another case of the left’s wonky moral compass.

CNN hosts censured Trump for not immediately condemning the white supremacists spoiling for a fight last weekend. But the faces of CNN didn’t rally to label evil when an Islamic terrorist ploughed into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, or when another Islamic terrorist rammed a truck at a crowd at a Berlin Christmas market, or when an Islamic terrorist mowed down pedestrians on a promenade in Nice on Bastille Day last year.

After an Islamic terrorist detonated a bomb and murdered teenagers at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester in May, London mayor Sadiq Khan didn’t condemn Islamic State — even though the terrorist group claimed responsibility. It was the same in June after three Islamic terrorists mowed into pedestrians on London Bridge before going from bar to bar, stabbing and slicing at patrons with 30cm hunting knives. Not even a clue from one of the ­Islamic terrorists, who shouted “This is for Allah” before stabbing a woman more than 10 times, helped Khan name the evil.

A fortnight ago, after Australian security authorities foiled an alleged plot to bomb an Etihad Airways flight out of Sydney, Islamic Council of Queensland spokesman Ali Kadri lodged a complaint when Australian Federal Police Commissioner Andrew Colvin described the evil plot as “Islamic-inspired terrorism”.

Why wasn’t the Muslim group condemned by opinionated hosts at the ABC for refusing to name the alleged evil given their eagerness to condemn Trump for the same error of judgment this week? For the same reason three days after the violence in Charlottesville, the ABC was still leading its news bulletins with Trump’s reaction yet it can barely bring itself to say Islamic or even Islamist ­terrorism; truth in labelling is an ad hoc business on the left.

When Man Haron Monis held hostages at gunpoint in Sydney’s Lindt cafe in December 2014, many on the left rushed to suggest he was mad, not bad. The coroner found otherwise, but it’s a standard response when violence is committed in the name of Islam. No one suggested the 20-year-old driver in Charlottesville was mad, not bad.

When Islamic terrorists strike, we are correctly reminded not to tar all Muslims with the actions of a few. The same may be said of those who marched in Charlottesville. Not all of them are anti-­Semitic nutters or Klansmen or neo-Nazis. Not all of them drove a car into the crowd. But no one warned against tarring everyone at the Unite the Right rally.

Instead, a determined ignorance defines the modern left. Charlottesville mayor and Democrat activist Michael Signer said: “I place the blame for a lot of what you’re seeing in America today right at the doorstep of the White House.” They also could lay the blame for the widespread illiberalism and violence erupting across American campuses at the feet of the divisive identity politics ­fuelled by Democrats such as Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

It’s a hard truth for the left that the Obama presidency begat the Trump presidency. Rather than blame Trump, it’s worth exploring how the rise of white supremacist groups is an inevitable consequence of identity group politics where groups vie for prominence on the basis of skin colour, race, creed, gender and sexuality.

Writing in The New York Times last year, self-described liberal Mark Lilla concluded that American liberalism had become a flawed movement based on the politics of moral panic about ­racial, gender and sexual identity that prevented it from being a unifying force.

Last week Lilla added to his compelling critique in The Wall Street Journal: “There is a mystery at the core of every suicide, and the story of how a once-successful liberal politics of solidarity became a failed liberal politics of ‘difference’ is not a simple one. Perhaps the best place to begin it is with a slogan: The personal is the political.” As Lilla says, the phrase coined by feminists to unite people has been turned on its head to mean the political is the personal, where the “forces are all centrifugal, encouraging splits into smaller and smaller factions obsessed with single issues and practising rituals of ideological one-upmanship”. The result is a movement that divides people rather than bringing them together.

What’s left of the left is a marketplace of outrage where emotion and politics trump intel­lectual honesty and moral clarity. From blinkered feminists who refuse to focus on real misogyny in the Middle East to human rights activists who mock free speech, from same-sex marriage advocates who trample on tolerance to those who demand that only white supremacists, not Islamic terrorists, be named and shamed, the left has become a hollow shell of hyperbole and hypocrisy.

Claims against Trump and his supporters will have real clout and credibility when the needle on the left’s faulty moral compass stops swinging so feverishly in one direction.

SOURCE





Royal Dutch Airlines failed hilariously when tweeting support for homosexuals, proving the opposite point



Royal Dutch Airlines attempted to show support for homosexuals with a tweet this week saying, “It doesn’t matter who you click with. Happy #PrideAmsterdam.” Unfortunately, it included the above picture — which only reinforces the opposite point that there’s just one way nature intended.

The first two seat belts in the picture obviously would not function. Or, as Jim Treacher put more humorously, “Only one of these seat belts will perform the intended function. I realize that noticing this means I’m bigoted against the LGBT community.”

Others on Twitter had a field day mocking the unfortunate pic. “I suppose for the top two options, you should just tie the ends together around your waist in an emergency,” tweeted Jim Geraghty.

Another tweeted an imaginary conversation: “Hello, Stewardess? My seatbelt doesn’t work”

“It doesn’t matter who you click with!”

“But… I could die in an accident.”

“Homophobe.”

That about sums it up for this week’s winner of the Non Compos Mentis Award.

SOURCE





James Damore: aftermath

Lubos Motl below discusses a video conversation between two people who reject the claim that all men are equal

Prof Jordan Peterson and Stefan Molyneux (both from Canada) are two main individualist YouTube pundits who have previously interviewed James Damore, the former $162,000-a-year Senior Google engineer who became a hero of freedom. So in this discussion, they talked to each other. They covered a lot of ground. You may see that their thinking and values are close enough to each other. But you may still see that they're individualist and they want similar audiences to dedicate time to their videos, so to some extent, this insightful debate still sounds like a competition of a sort.

They discussed optimistic specifics of this Damore story. Damore hasn't backed off, he preferred to talk to independent media such as themselves over the mainstream media. The New York Times wrote a story urging Google to fire its anti-freedom-of-expression CEO Mr Kunda Píča.

Many events were so similar to those after the 2005 speech by Larry Summers about women in science. But many events were so different. Even though James Damore is basically a shy boy, his public reactions were more self-confident than those of Larry Summers. A part of it may be due to Damore's having received some recommendations from pundits: Don't back off. He could have received such recommendations because the independent media such as Molyneux's and Peterson's talk shows are far more powerful now than they or their counterparts were in 2005.

As they happily noticed, their videos generally get many more views than analogous videos by the "mainstream media". So these very labels – who is really mainstream – is finally getting complicated.

They discussed the harm that Google has done by having fired Damore. I agree with that entirely. Consumers may start to doubt the trustworthiness of Google. And potential stellar employees may be afraid of accepting a job at Google. These are potentially serious problems. And it's possible that not only some centrist and right-wing technology experts could choose a different occupation because of the occasional defective atmosphere in the company that may have grown into the "culture" of censorship and harassment. Some left-wing candidates who are left-wing in a "wrong way" could do the same.

I am personally not going to boycott Google's products because of these matters. I would feel like one of those left-wing childish activists who never really succeed, who abandon meritocracy in favor of ideology, and I am just too conservative. Even if some products were equally good or better than Google's, I have tested Google's products sufficiently to be certain. But I think that if you aren't constrained by these things, you should try alternatives. You should try the Czech Seznam maps instead of Google maps. And you should try Seznam's search engine and Seznam's superfast browser, too! Those products may be better than Google's alternatives. Seznam's owner Mr Ivo Lukačovič has denounced efforts to politically profile ads in his company and vows to keep his company apolitical.

As a consumer, I would actually be afraid of some Google products that are too physical, such as self-driving cars. If writing a totally sensible analysis about women in tech was enough for the Google CEO to fire the engineer, maybe writing bit more right-wing texts than Damore's could be enough for a Google boss to schedule a car accident for your car. They could cover it by exactly the same excuses as now – corporations have the right to trample on the employees' freedom of speech much like they have the right to push the accelerator pedal in your car in front of an abyss – both the employee and the consumer have signed some contract allowing these things, haven't they? Note that it is not the artificial intelligence of the self-driving car that is dangerous for you; it is the malicious humans who may try to hide their crimes behind the artificial intelligence.

According to a common sense understanding of the freedom of speech, the firing of Damore was an unacceptable violation of the basic Western values and the "accelerator push" of a Google self-driving car would be a murder at least informally.

Molyneux and Peterson have discussed lots of things about the growth of wealth since the 1870s, the increasing inequality and decreasing poverty, the Left's self-contradicting attitudes to many good and bad processes and conditions in the society, the correlation of the IQ and success, whether the IQ may be modified by training (no), whether people with the IQ beneath 83 are useful for the U.S. army (no), and many others. It was a very stimulating intellectual discussion and I really recommend you to watch it in its entirety.

I would subscribe at least to some 95% of the things that they have said.

SOURCE

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Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here

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