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Showing posts from January, 2011

Separation of Church and State, UK style

Church must make women bishops, say MPs A group of influential MPs will tomorrow call for Parliament to intervene over the historic reform as fears grow that the Church will reject plans allowing female bishops. The cross-party group, including former ministers Frank Field and Stephen Timms, and Simon Hughes, the deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats, is concerned that the General Synod, the Church's parliament, may not pass legislation designed to end the glass ceiling for women clergy. Hmmm From where I sit the whole idea of women clergy has not worked out too well for the Anglican church - indeed there is a meeting of Anglican Primates in Dublin as I write and the turmoil in the communion is such that fifteen out of the Thirty eight primates are not attending. The center of gravity for Anglicanism has shifted from the West to Africa where they don't ordain women. But if the English Parliament demands women bishops for Anglicans what is to stop them from going after

Australia Week

The Unions NSW Secretary, Mark Lennon has called for Australia Day holiday to last an entire week . Oh, sure there would be some collective bargaining and the odd strike to sort out the details, and presumably pubs would remain open with free beer, whilst bar staff were paid triple time - but they are just minor details. The point is that Unions are there to do more than worry about what goes on at work. They need to worry about what goes on outside of work. Not to mention that Melbourne Cup Day may eclipse Australia Day celebrations, so it's important to be pushing the envelope and ensuring the hierarchy of holidays is correctly maintained. With a bit of forward planning, Australia may also be able to mark out the month of Ramadan as the official cure to a week of feasting, partying and drinking. From New Zealand's point of view, it's a nice bit of one-upmanship. Whilst we debate the merits of getting ANZAC and Waitangi day off on the Monday, if it falls on a S

Let me tell you about the "birds and the bees" II

This post has been recycled from over two years ago to celebrate the fact that DPF has used the images it uses to mock Creationism . Man This is Adam as painted by Albrecht Dürer. He is a man. Adam was a father, the father of the human race. Since the time of Adam all fathers have been men. No man has ever been mother to a child. All children that have ever been born have had exactly one father. Woman And this is Eve, the other half of the painting. She is a woman. Eve was a mother, the first mother and mother to all humanity. And since the time of Eve all mothers have been women, without exception. And all children that have ever been born have had exactly one mother. And whether Adam and Eve actually existed or whether they are figures of myth is of little consequence in this regard. It is self evident, supported by human experience and biology that the pairing of exactly one male with exactly one female is what required to produce a child - the next generation to c

You never know where life might lead you

And surely it's better than being killed before your first step? Well, there are a group of people in our society that would strongly debate that concept. They can be quite pushy about it too, and one of their best arguments could be "Would you want me as a parent if I had wanted to kill you?" But the reality is not all mothers facing abortion think that way. They may be letting others think for them. They may simply make a bad decision or a poor choice, based on a variety of factors that make them feel they have no choice. The irony, I suspect, of being pro-choice is that this is demanded because they feel they have none. I say irony also, because you can never be free of the consequences of some decisions. Equally, the reality of taking on board such responsibility (looking after a baby) without the capability to manage it, without emotional and financial support can be (I imagine) absolutely crushing. Maybe society has to change for the abortion numbers to

Friday night free for all

Another week gone and darn near another month, 2011 is well under way. Any chat time - it sure is a wet night here. I hope we don't float away before morning. My gutters are overflowing and I have a damp cat drying herself by rubbing herself against my legs. Sigh

What the world needs now is another Genghis Khan?

Get this In 1206 AD Genghis Khan began the Mongol invasion: a horse-crazed bow-wielding military force that swept through much of modern-day Asia into the Middle East and Eastern Europe. But aside from creating the world's largest empire, the Mongol invasion had another global impact that has remained hidden in history according to new research by Julia Pongratz of the Carnegie Institution's Department of Global Ecology. Genghis Khan and his empire, which lasted nearly two centuries, actually cooled the Earth. "It's a common misconception that the human impact on climate began with the large-scale burning of coal and oil in the industrial era," says Pongratz, lead author of the study in a press release. "Actually, humans started to influence the environment thousands of years ago by changing the vegetation cover of the Earth‘s landscapes when we cleared forests for agriculture." The answer to how this happened can be told in one w

WWII behind closed doors - the first episode

Wow. The deportations that my Dad experienced as a child are in this episode. And a whole lot of stuff on how the Soviets were directly helping the Nazis at the beginning of the war. The episode is in 4 parts, further parts should be obvious as you watch each one.

WWII behind closed doors - the background

The first of a series of You-Tube clips on the WWII story that many people are not aware of.

The 2nd Polish Corps and the London Victory Parade [update 2]

I was asked yesterday (by Kowtow) on DPF's General Debate for more information about the Polish II Corps denied a place in the Victory Parade in London after WWII. I found the following from Polish veterans to take pride of place in victory parade , which shows when and why Poland was excluded.  It was because Stalin wished it so. Among the veterans who will march along The Mall on Sunday [July 2005] in a parade marking the 60th anniversary of the end of the second world war, few will participate with the same pride as a contingent of elderly Poles. For the Poles and their military standards will be present for the first time in a British victory parade. Even though Poland made one of the largest contributions to the Allied war effort and there were thousands of Polish troops stationed in the UK at the time, the country was excluded from the original London celebration in 1946. Stalin, who had established communist rule in eastern Europe, indicated that he did not wis

What is odd in this picture?

It's a strange old world, sad at times. See if you can spot the strangeness in this photograph, it's not that hard, then click on it to get the background story.

Communist board game

Experience communism in a new Polish board game similar to Monopoly. Players try to buy basic goods but food supplies run out before they reach the counter. If a bed is needed, they may be offered stools instead. Players needing the shop's last pair of shoes can get edged out by someone holding a "mother with small child" or "friend in government" card. [...] "We may laugh at it today, but it was not funny for them, when they were wasting their lives in lines ." Related link: Polish board game recalls communist hardship ~ AP

Labour pledge to attack the middle class

Well, I predicted it . [ and here ] Remember how National dropped the income tax rates IN EXCHANGE for putting up the GST rate? Well, when Labour come in, the income tax rates go back up and the GST rate stays the same. They throw in a tax free threshold to appeal to the low incomes, but it, in socialist reform terms, is pathetically low (5K) and is only going to be introduced in "stages". Blimey, such conviction. At least he's held off doing GST exemptions for certain items. Labour on its own looks unlikely to win the next election, but with the magic of MMP could find itself in the tax and spend seat under a coalition of all the minor parties: Elderly suffer tax shock

The cluster bomb

Kiwi children are running the gauntlet of fast-food restaurants every day – with outlets five times more likely to be clustered around schools, research shows. And by running the gauntlet, are becoming extremely fit. Just imagine the gains if they put giant mouse wheels in front of fast food restaurants? But unfortunately, they didn't think of that. However, newer research [not yet released] shows that fast-food restaurants aren't being built around schools, but instead schools are being built around fast-food restaurants. Those lazy teachers. The high number of burger joints and chip shops close to schools is thought to be a factor in the childhood-obesity epidemic sweeping the Western world. Because walking past food is highly contagious. Can't people just get a vaccination for this and be protected? I heard a dose of the word "NO" can do wonders. The problem has prompted the Secondary Principals Association to call for restrictions on what dairi

European Parliament resolution condemning persecution against Christians

The European Parliament has done a most incredible thing.  It has issued a resolution against the world wide persecution of Christianity.  Recently it hosted a conference on world-wide persecution against Christians, and I think this conference must have awoken something. It is one thing to live in a country where Christianity is disdained, such as NZ where very little outrage is elicited when an Anglican church is broken into and communion wafers stolen , and quite another when you realise that there are countries in the world where Christians live daily in fear for their lives. It's quite a sobering thought when you realise that 150,000 Christians a year are killed for their belief in Christ. Virtually every human rights group and Western government agency that monitors the plight of Christians worldwide arrives at more or less the same conclusion: Between 200 million and 230 million of them face daily threats of murder, beating, imprisonment and torture, and a further 350

Poor Sir Elton John

Oh woe, are his civil rights are being violated ?. Sir Elton John is "fed up" with being a treated like a "second-class citizen" in the U.S. So what might be required to fix it? "In this country, we need more dialogue," he said during an interview Friday. "We don't need any more stone throwing. We don't need any more vitriol. We need people to say, 'OK. I'm straight. You're gay. Let's get along. I'm Republican. You're Democratic. Let's work together.' I'm sick and tired of people being hateful to each other in this country." Fair enough but then Sir Elton goes on to chuck a few stones of his own. "Everyone is entitled to have their own beliefs and their own spirituality," said John. "The big difference is that the dogma of the church can be so hateful and divisive . It's stuck in the Stone Age. We don't live in the Stone Age anymore. The church is losing people left, right and cen

One more girl

This provocative film documents the stories of the numerous girls adversely affected by the HPV vaccines – giving these young women and their families a chance to speak out – share their dismay and sense of betrayal for simply believing the pharmaceutical and medical industries were protecting them when marketing HPV vaccines for the prevention of cervical cancer. More about this project and their plea for help

Ratana Relationship Repaired?

Politicians make their annual pilgrimage to Ratana, near Wanganui to celebrate the birth of the religious movement's founder. The National Government and its Maori Party partners presented a united face when Prime Minister John Key visited Ratana Pa this afternoon. In a comment clearly aimed at Mr Harawira, Mr Key said: "I say to those critics, what can you achieve from opposition? And the answer is nothing. "You achieve things when you are part of the solution, not when you are solely carping on about problems." [ United Front at Ratana ] And the National Government backed this up with a promise to spend an average of $27,000 on maintenance and insulation on each of the 100 homes ( $2.7M total ) in the Ratana community. Link: Thumbnail Sketch of Ratana (The man the religion is based around) and a bit more here

When atheists are angry at God

I’ve been mad at just about anything you can imagine. Except unicorns. I’ve never been angry at unicorns. I've shaken my fist in anger at stalled cars, storm clouds, and incompetent meterologists. I've even, on one terrible day that included a dead alternator, a blaring blaring tornado-warning siren, and a horrifically wrong weather forecast, cursed all three at once. I've fumed at furniture, cussed at crossing guards, and held a grudge against Gun Barrel City, Texas. I've been mad at just about anything you can imagine. Except unicorns. I've never been angry at unicorns. It's unlikely you've ever been angry at unicorns either. We can become incensed by objects and creatures both animate and inanimate. We can even, in a limited sense, be bothered by the fanciful characters in books and dreams. But creatures like unicorns that don't exist – that we truly believe not to exist – tend not to raise our ire. We certainly don't blame the one-horned creatu

National promoting larger families

"They will now be able to transfer their property portfolio to their children. If, for example, a person earning $150,000 also earns a net $42,000 from their property portfolio and receives this personally, they pay $14,000 in tax on it (33 percent). "But if they transfer this to their three children, the children then each have an income of $14,000 which is only taxed at 10.5 percent," Phil Goff said. "That means the total tax paid is $4410. That is a tax cut by stealth of $10,000 in this case." Goff was blabbing on about the scrapping of Gift duty , and his example was rather useless, as the same scenario could be repeated in other ways under the old system. So I think the main message is that National seem to be encouraging bigger families according to Goff. Three minimum. Well, that's nice. PS: I think it is illegal to arrange your affairs so as to make tax avoidance the main reason for a transaction, so be careful following Goff's advice

Making a mountain out of a tapu

[Partly Satirical] Taranaki Department of Conservation Boss, Phil Mohi has declared no food may be cooked in New Zealand , but bringing in a packed lunch from overseas is permissible: "The act of cooking over an ancestor is tapu – it's something that you just don't do," he said. "There's a difference too between eating prepared food for sustenance and actually cooking And went on to explain all of New Zealand is an ancestor, with Northland the mohawk haircut, Auckland Harbour the mouth and eye, Mount Taranaki a nipple, the Cook Straight it's private bits and he declined to talk further about other locations. "Although there is no brain, it hasn't got a brain" he added thoughtlessly. "Graffiti is also right out, unless you call it a tattoo or "ta moko". "Also, in line with cultural sensitivity we also demand no New Zealander eat meat on Friday's and give up bacon. This prohibition will last 12 months until

Boy George gets good press

And deservedly so in a feel good story of the day. Cyprus' Orthodox Christian Church on Thursday thanked former Culture Club singer Boy George for returning an icon of Christ that it says was stolen from a church in the breakaway north of the divided island. Boy George agreed to return the 18th century icon he bought from a London art dealer in 1985 after being presented with proof of its true origin, the church said in a statement posted on its Web site. "Before this, I had no idea who Boy George was," Brussels-based Bishop Porfyrios who led efforts for the icon's recovery told The Associated Press. "He was positive about returning the icon." The church said it was alerted about the icon's whereabouts by an informer who saw the singer with it on a Dutch TV show last November. Boy George, who said he was unaware of the icon's history when he bought it, personally handed the icon over to Bishop Porfyrios in London on Tuesday. In retur

Co-opting "Civil Rights"

40 African-American political and religious leaders just got together on Martin Luther King's birthday to decry the Left's stealing co-opting of King's term "Civil Rights" for their own agendas, such as the push for homosexuality in society. Of course, the mainstream media (who were given advance briefing of the event) largely ignored it , because it doesn't square with their ideology.

Say it isn't so

We are doomed, the wonderful scheme to save the planet from human economic activity by transferring wealth from the productive to the parasitic, chattering classes is rife with fraud . Under the flagship trading scheme, companies need permits to emit carbon dioxide as part of the global fight against climate change. Polluters are granted a certain number of emissions allowances that can be traded. However, it has been plagued by fraud, with Europol estimating that criminals trying to play the system accounted for up to 90pc of all market activity in some European countries during 2009. Fraudulent traders mainly from Britain, France, Spain, Denmark and Holland pocketed an estimated €5bn. Well I'll be! Who'd have thunk it possible?

Palin Derangement Syndrome

Blogger Scott Hong has catalogued over 400 instances of overt media bias against Sarah Palin. It doesn't surprise me. Even so, it's way behind the 8-ball. It was written in 2008. Update: Nope, my sights were off as Scott Hong has been updating that post, so it's over 400 and growing... Palin Derangement Syndrome .

This really is the Pitts

The bias continues with the latest rant from William Rivers Pitt , NYT So let me get this straight. Twenty people were gunned down at a supermarket in Arizona on Saturday. Six were killed, including a nine-year-old girl. Fourteen others were wounded, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was the main target of the attack, and who was shot through the head. She is currently lying in a hospital bed with half of her skull removed because brain swelling from her bullet wound could kill her. Twenty people shot. Six killed. Fourteen wounded. And guess what? It appears Sarah Palin is the principal victim of the shooting. No, really. And then his article goes on to make out Sarah is pretending to be the victim, and it should be all about the real victims. So William, I'll help you get it straight. Twenty people shot. Six killed. Fourteen wounded. By a lone gunman with no connection to Sarah Palin And guess what? You and your friends point the finger at the Tea Part

Abuse smoking gun nothing more than a boiling kettle

Catholic haters have jumped the gun on this one. Again, the world's media falsely accuses the Vatican of a sexual abuse cover-up with yet another newly discovered document that is inflated to mean more than it actually does. A newly revealed 1997 letter from the Vatican warned Ireland's Catholic Bishops not to report all suspected child-abuse cases to police - a disclosure that victims' groups described as "the smoking gun" needed to show that the Vatican enforced a worldwide coverup. That's from an AP article on the front page of today World section in the Dominion Post. So, what is wrong with this picture? Signed by the late Archbishop Luciano Storero, Pope John Paul II's diplomat to Ireland, the letter instructs Irish Bishops that their new policy of making the reporting of suspected crimes mandatory "gives rise to serious reservations of both a moral and canonical nature." In other words, the Irish Bishops are being warned that mand

Philadelphia's house of horrors

The devil's work exposed in Philadelphia. An abortion doctor who catered to minorities, immigrants and poor women was charged with eight counts of murder in the deaths of a patient and seven babies who were born alive and then killed with scissors, prosecutors said Wednesday. (snip) Gosnell "induced labor, forced the live birth of viable babies in the sixth, seventh, eighth month of pregnancy and then killed those babies by cutting into the back of the neck with scissors and severing their spinal cord," Williams said. The Grand Jury's report if you have the stomach for it.

A couple of years race by

Boy Racers. Mostly annoying and often dangerous, but I say that in largely stereotypical fashion, because the species is wide and varied. A couple of years on Judith Collins is reporting the success of her car crushing policy. At first glance, an 18% decrease seems to be a success. It depends how we define success though. I'm sure Stalin often had great reports on how the population was behaving themselves following 20 years of incentivising good behaviour. We shouldn't crow too loudly on how easy it is to solve complex social issues, because for 8 cents and a pine box per problem, we could be publishing PowerPoint Graphs that the department of Statistics would simply gush over. On the other hand , the policy seems to have a whole pile of caveats and exceptions, with the smell of hundreds of extra hours of valuable court time and piles of extra tax dollars spent to make sure we don't actually crush a car if it's going to cause extreme hardship, such as (in this

Quote of the day

Discrimination law is meant to act as a shield to protect people from unfair treatment, not to be used as a sword to attack those whose beliefs you disagree with. This quote comes from an opinion piece in the Telegraph commenting on court case involving an elderly Christian Couple who run a guest house in Cornwall and two gays. The couple have always maintained a strict policy of only allowing married couples to share a double bed. This policy is articulated in their brochures. You can guess what happened, the happy couple turned up, were offered alternative arrangements but went off in a huff, and initiated a taxpayer funded discrimination suit. And you can guess the rest .

With egos this big, who would notice the bruise?

You woulda thought that with egos that big, a small bruise would be barely noticeable. But one of these bruised egos declares that Ricky Gervais will never work in Hollywood again. I guess every cloud has a silver lining, or do I mean every silver lining has a cloud? So Redbaiter found a few of his one liners, and I thought they worked . Well, maybe to the TV audience, but the live audience oscillated between deadly quiet, and making those gasps they practice for finding a loved one completely dead in the opening scene. They were no doubt all set for an enjoyable night of Bush, Palin and Tea Party mockery and they accidentally put a Brit on the stage. Whoops. You know those Brits, no class. Probably came from jersey-side or maybe New Brunswick. I hear that's a Northern State of America where the immigration issues aren't nearly as bad as in Arizona. Say, when can we have more of those Tea Party jokes? Maybe next year they can get Sheen and Downey? I don't t

Grieving for Eden

PM has blogged on the latest death of an innocent child, the very same child I posted on yesterday . He starts off well enough noting, as I did the commonality between all these cases - and then notes how mealy mouthed political correctness stifles discussion when it comes to finding the solutions. From here he goes off the rails. See, it's not "widespread," is it Kim? And it's not "the country's" child abuse record, is it John? The more you try and pretend that beating children to death isn't a crime that can be profiled in any way, that it is in fact randomly distributed in the population, the more you make yourselves look stupid and conservatives look like people with a grip on the problem. Many of us have no enthusiasm for conservative solutions to this, but if you're constantly out there making non-conservatives look like imbeciles who are incapable of recognising facts that are staring them in the face, sooner or later conservative so

The Vatican and Communism

A number of years ago, I wrote a post for Sir Humphrey's which included the quote below.  After finally finding it again for a comment made on Crusader Rabbit , I've now also found the source, which deals with the dealings of the Vatican with Communism. Here's the quote showing how much of a threat the Soviets considered Roman Catholicism: 'We Communists feel pretty sure we can triumph over London capitalism but Rome will prove a harder nut to crack. If Rome did not exist, we would be able to deal with all the various brands of Christianity. They would all finally capitulate before us. Without Rome, religion would die.' ~ Chicherin, Foreign Minister of the USSR in 1925, in a comment made to the Apostolic Delegate, Mons Michel d'Herbigny, from The Vatican and the Red Flag: the struggle for the soul of Eastern Europe by Jonathan Luxmoore, Jolanta Babiuch.

Reagan - Man With A Backbone II

Reagan, again, on abortion. Hattip: Semper Vita

Reagan - Man With A Backbone I

Wisdom of Reagan. He speaks of the Liberals, then, but this could easily be directed to Barrack Obama now. Just replace "Iron Curtain" and "Khrushchev" with "Iran" and "Ahmadinejad" and he could be speaking about the United States current policy of appeasement. We need more men with backbone like this today. Full text of video after jump

Monday morning blues and another dead baby

A contemporary New Zealand horror: Man charged over baby's death so common now that we read the report, sigh and move on. There is very little detail in the story but when they emerge its a pound to a penny that the usual factors will be evident. For forty years Governments have enacted policies which undermine the raising of children in families, undermined marriage while the modern conformation of "sexuality" and sexual freedom has trumped the importance of sex in procreation. The result fewer children are born (17000+ murdered in the womb last year alone) and a large proportion of those who are are born into highly dysfunctional environments. As a culture we have turned our back on the importance of raising children in traditional family units, often sneering at such arrangements and as a consequence we are sliding back into barbarism as evidenced in the story linked above.

AGW blame not worth the toilet paper it was written on

A huge forest fire in Israel in December generated a strong statement from Greenpeace: “Greenpeace wishes to emphasize that this fire is a direct expression of the effects of climate change and global warming which threaten us all. Climate change is already here and it is taking a heavy human toll! We are at the beginning of the month of December and are experiencing summer temperatures and no rain. If there were rains this year, the ground and trees would have been wet and a fire of this sort would not have raged out of control in such a devastating way. Fires such as these can be expected to take place more frequently and in larger scales as a result of climate change. Israel must take this warning sign seriously and take immediate measures in order to eradicate the effects of climate change. Israel must cancel its plans to construct another coal plant, reduce use of fossil fuels, and realize that we are dealing with an international struggle. ” The rains might be coming l

Grey hair for gravitas

Today At the memorial two days ago From Glenn Reynolds WHAT, HE’S GOT SOME KIND OF “HAIR WARDROBE” NOW? Ann Althouse : “And what’s the first thing you notice — the difference between today and the speech he gave at the memorial? Right. Different color hair. Gray for the memorial, signifying the wise elder, the father figure. Back to dark hair to signify the vigorous young man, ready to forge ahead, solving problems, and restoring his party’s electoral fortunes.”

Greens calling the shots

The Green Party is calling for further investigations following a ruling by NATO that New Zealand SAS troops were acting in self-defence during a night raid in Afghanistan. It's not just a ruling by NATO, but our own Defence Force brass. Greens spokesperson for defence, Keith Locke, says according to a Wikileaks document the President of Afghanistan, Harmid Karzai, had asked for night raids to cease because of the dangers involved. So what? It wasn't a night raid, as such. The men had orders to go out, in response to a suspicion of imminent attacks on the US Embassy. So they went out, they got shot at, and ultimately returned fire resulting in the death of 2 security guards. It isn't enough that a full investigation was carried out, and it isn't enough that an Afgan General was suspended, and a Colonel fired for the overall handling of the incident. No, they want more blood, because they don't agree the SAS should be there. However, it is one thing not

The Uncivil War

The American progressives are losing it. They demand greater civility in political dialogue, and then get caught out being most uncivil. First they try to blame the Tea Party, by leaping in with wild speculation before the blood from Jared Loughner's gun has even dried. Then they accuse Palin of inciting murder, because of campaign map icons. Bulls-eyes on the targeted states for a political campaign! Oops, sorry, it was the Democrats who used the bulls-eye. An easy mistake to make. And if incitement to murder was as bad as the Democrats say, why do so many of them own "Kill Bush" T-Shirts , or tweet " Some-one needs to kill Sarah Palin ? These are not isolated incidents, Sarah Palin has racked up hundreds of death threats against her. And this most uncivil discourse is only encouraging more, and all based on fabricated progressive-hype. This report from the Wall Street Journal sums it up:

The Turkish Frankenstein's operations in Kosovo

A modern day horror, the EU has gathered evidence that organs taken from Serb prisoners were trafficed from Kosovo during the war and for some time afterwards. This man Turkish surgeon Yusuf Ercin Sonmez is believed to be responsible for the organ removal . He has been arrested in Turkey and if found guilty of war crimes will serve his time there. Over 1800 Serbs remain missing in Kosovo.

Mealy mouthed generation

Have you ever read Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn. It's been a standard classroom text for generations. But despite its literary merit a problem has developed. When Mark Twain wrote it the standard term for a black person was the um N-WORD and it appears 219 times within the text. So the latest editions fix this by changing the unacceptable word where ever it appears to "slave", thereby destroying the rhythm and flow of the original prose. Literature and art are a context of their times and modifying them to match modern sensitivities kind of ruins the point of reading them. On a related matter an old Dire Straits song has fallen foul of the language police. Yes this song can no longer be played in its original form in Canada because the lyrics contain the word " Faggot ", ironically used ironically. How long before Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice gets banned for its antisemitism I wonder? Funny thing is we studied that text at s

Egypt needs to stop meddling in the affairs of other countries

The German President condemned Egypt's recent demands regarding German property, and suggested that they stay out of German affairs entirely. This diplomatic row came about as Egyptians demanded the "return" of a 3,400-year-old bust of the wife of the Sun King Akhenaten, which has been in German hands since 1912. Now the Egyptians want it back, if not for keeps, then at least on loan to mark the opening in 2012 of a new Grand Egyptian Museum, near the Pyramid at Giza. If the Egyptian Museum in Berlin does not agree, says Zahi Hawass, there will be trouble. “We will make the lives of these museums miserable,” the secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities in Egypt said. “It will be a scientific war.” For a full background, read here: Coptic Christians the sole property of the Egyptian State .

How to look idiotic, a guide for Islamic countries

Recall your ambassador to the Vatican, because the Pope calls on you to protect your Christian minority from violent death because of their Christianity. CAIRO: Egypt called home its Ambassador to the Vatican on Tuesday in protest of Pope Benedict XVI’s call for certain countries, including Egypt, do more to ensure Christians can practice their faith without discrimination or violence. The Egyptian Foreign Ministry strongly rejected the Pope’s statements and labeled them as “interference”. “The Vatican’s new statements touch on Egyptian internal affairs, which Egypt considers an unacceptable interference,” a spokesman of the ministry said. “Egypt will not allow non-Egyptians to interfere in its internal affairs under any pretext,” said Hossam Zaki, spokesman of Egypt’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Do they even realise how idiotic this makes them look? Related link: Egypt recalls Vatican Ambassador after Pope’s statements ~ Bikyamasr

Trip to Bethlehem

Well I’ve been on a trip around Israel, following almost to a tee a 10 day Christian-based itinerary provided by the Israeli Ministry of Tourism. I started in Tel Aviv then headed up the west coast, across to Galilee, then down the eastern flank through the Dead Sea to Eilat and then finally back up to Jerusalem via The Negev. One notable omission from their comprehensive itinerary is Bethlehem, probably since it is located in a Palestinian National Authority controlled area. By chance of luck I had an extra day due to the timing of my flights and reserved that final day while based in Jerusalem to visit Bethlehem.

Who Are The Real "Haters"?

After the recent tragic shooting of Congresswoman Gifford in the US and the subsequent attack by Liberals on Sarah Palin, the Tea Party, and the Right (which had nothing to do with it), Michelle Malkin has put together a little ' Illustrated Primer " (a link to which Zen has also given in a post below) looking back ten years that shows who the real haters are. It's not the Conservatives, who are only standing up for the Constitution and their morals rights: no, it is the progressive Left who cannot seem to contain their hate, but must express it in images like the one shown here for example, an image sold on Getty (now withdrawn) of someone pointing a rifle at Sarah Palin and her daughter, and the infamous " Abort Sarah Palin " stickers. The ultimate in hypocrisy.

Julian Assange jumps on "vitriolic political discourse" bandwagon

People have grown bored with wikileaks - it was titillating for a while but even Julian Assange's problems with Swedish law have grown stale. So in a sorry effort to drum up sympathy Mr Assange issues a press release WikiLeaks spokesman Julian Assange said: "No organisation anywhere in the world is a more devoted advocate of free speech than Wikileaks but when senior politicians and attention seeking media commentators call for specific individuals or groups of people to be killed they should be charged with incitement -- to murder. Those who call for an act of murder deserve as significant share of the guilt as those raising a gun to pull the trigger." “WikiLeaks has many young staff, volunteers and supporters in the same geographic vicinity as these the broadcast or circulation of these incitements to kill. We have also seen mentally unstable people travel from the US and other counties to other locations. Consequently we have to engage in extreme security measure

Another Assassination in America

I find the continual character assassinations of Sarah Palin by the media with obvious left wing biases quite disgusting. On one hand they urge the reader to consider that the rhetoric has got out of hand, and this climate of fear and hate must be restrained. And then they put the boot in. So the latest speculations and conjectures by Catherine Philp, [ story here ] who has a history of writing articles on Palin that stress the negatives and ignore the positives, declares the Arizona shooting the end of Palin's career. "Only the harshest of her opponents truly believes that Mrs Palin can be blamed..." , and that would have to include Catherine Philp then, because she casts her spin-bias over the rest of the article. "Mrs Palin's silence may be more than just a simple lack of words..." she opines, after explaining that Palin has been totally and absolutely silent during this tragic time (apart from issuing her condolences, but that doesn't count app


Actions speak louder than words, and whilst the USA debates how loud words are allowed to be, looks like these quiet actions by Egyptian Muslims made all the difference: Moderates are willing to die for their beliefs. Extremists are willing to kill for them

Razing Arizona

The Loony Left at work The efforts to blame the Tea Party Movement and/or Sarah Palin for the terrible and tragic mass shooting event in Arizona from the self-described peace loving, rational, progressives above the flaming rhetoric and incitement to violence is easily unmasked by Michelle Malkin. The Progressive Climate of Hate Sometimes, people who take the higher ground are just looking for a better shot. Update 11:30PM : The left and the H Bomb and check out Crusader Rabbit and True Blue NZ (and most of the blogosphere for that matter) for a variety of coverage.  True Blue has a list of the victims and their profiles.

Matching Vladimir's manliness?

Is there anyone out there who might match Vladimir Putin for machismo? Perhaps there is, click on the image below to find out just who it might be.

Things to make your stomach churn

We live in a fallen world and we all struggle to negotiate the snares and pitfalls that entails. And bad things happen to good people as we saw yesterday in Arizona. But this is not a punishment delivered from God for the sins of the American people. Apparently Judge John Roll had just attended Mass and had just dropped by to see Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords on impulse. Nine-year-old Christina Taylor Greene who was born on September 11, 2001 did nothing to bring this upon herself. She was in the wrong place at the wrong time. She is with the Lord now, of that I am confident. And those who would disrupt her funeral, as is threatened, bringing further pain to her grieving family in order to advance their agenda are not doing the Lord's work, they serve another master entirely. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on us.

Metaphors don't kill but nutters can

The big story of the day is the shooting of congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords seriuously wounding her and 12 others, leaving another five people, including a federal judge dead. And craziness ensues - in the media, in the blogosphere and on Twitter. An early claim was the culprit was an veteran of Afghanistan, appearing in many reports - nope turns out the fellow tried to enlist but was rejected. Too bad the crazed vet meme is a dog that wont run. More persistent is a campaign map from the girl everyone loves to hate. It had targets over seats believed to be winnable by the Republicans in the last election cycle. And one of those seats was the one held by congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. And this may have incited todays events according to the excitable. Phooey - everyone knows its a metaphor and it is highly unlikely the culprit ever saw it unless he was directly engaged in the campaign or is a total political junkie. Neither of which seems likely. And nor is modern Americ

Squatting Rights

With a tent and an airbed packed into his old silver Mercedes-Benz, and a kayak strapped on top, overstayer Jurgen Karl Ahrens made the New Zealand outdoors his home. For 20 years, the 72-year-old German avoided authorities and deportation back to his home country because he was always on the move. Alas, after 20 years slipping past the entire NZ Police Force, our armed forces, the Department of Conservation Park Rangers (second only to Texas Rangers and those rangers that catch people stealing too much paua), and the nosey next door neighbours, Jurgen has been captured and summarily deported . This is a travesty, and I think we have to take a long hard look at the rights of the indigenous peoples of New Zealand, as Jurgens most surely is, and wonder if we too are on borrowed time? 20 years out bush and we treat him as an over-stayer? He obviously loves the place. What hope for those who have spent the last three years doing Year 11?

Friday night free for all

It's Christmas again. Chat time for anyone not busy celebrating.

Why homosexuality is incompatible with conservatism

A very succinct explanation on why homosexuality is incompatible with conservatism. Biologically, physiologically, males and females are clearly counterparts to one another. The male sexual and reproductive anatomy is obviously designed for a relationship with a female, and vice versa. Homosexual practice thus requires individuals to contradict their own biology. It disconnects a person’s sexuality from his or her biological identity as male or female — which exerts a self-alienating and fragmenting effect on the human personality. And the logic of alienation will not stop there. Already the acceptance of same-sex relationships is metastasizing into a postmodern notion of sexuality as fluid and changing over time. For example, an article in the Utne Reader highlights individuals who came out of the closet as homosexual, but were later attracted to heterosexual relationships again. The article quotes psychotherapist Bret Johnson explaining that people today “don’t want to fit in


For many Christians of the East the 7th of January is Christmas Day. I am a Orthodox Christian and the Church day begins at sunset. Since the sun has set where I am it's Christmas. As you may have read Christians in many parts of the world are coming under attack in their Churches. A Coptic Church in Alexandria was bombed last weekend with many deaths What you may not know that an open threat has been issued against the Coptic Christians to disrupt and attack their Celebration of the Nativity. This threat includes not only the Copts in Africa and the Middle East but extends to European and North American Copts as well. Let us pray the celebrations of the Prince of Peace remains peaceful. What is for certain in many places it will be somewhat subdued .

Goff announces new cabinet line-up

Phil Goff has ended speculation by announcing a new cabinet line-up in order to lift Labour's flagging position in the polls and face the upcoming election with at least a small chance of success. John Key has been offered Deputy Prime Minister, with Phil Goff confirming rumours that John Key was thinking of retiring from National "if Labour wins the election". "With John Key on board, we think we've got a great chance of winning and we fully expect John to turn our fortunes around. He has great experience with implementing Labour policy, and brings some fresh new centrist ideas to the mix", said Goff. Goff has appointed Donald Duck as Shadow Minister of Women's Affairs, suggesting that the popular Disney Character has mainstream appeal and can relate to both younger and older voters. "Assuming he beats the recent groping and sexual assault charges , we think Donald adds a certain amount of integrity over our former line-up".

The worst ideas in the world - The Midgley Award

The Darwin Awards commemorate those who yield to natural selection and "remove" themselves from the gene pool, ensuring that the next generation is fathered by one less idiot unless they were idiotic enough to father a child before they eradicated themselves. (Funny how we assume Darwin candidates are male, or is it a fact?) What a great concept. In that tradition, I propose "The worst ideas in the world award" which could suitably be named "The Midgley Awards". Thomas Midgley Jr . came up with some truly bad ideas. He was an engineer and chemist by trade, doing his "best" work from the 1920's. Thomas Midgley managed to severely damage the environment by synthesizing chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) and also came up with the idea of adding TEL (lead) to petrol, killing people and the environment with spectacular success. He is the perfect poster boy for this award, as he also qualifies for a Darwin Award. After contracting polio, probably

Anglican conversions to Rome far more high profile now

Anglicanism is being rescued by Pope Benedict. Who would have thought! The old ecumenism is dead... The ordination of women, the consecration of women bishops, the rationalization of homosexual unions, the doctrinal apostasy and the open moral degeneracy has led Benedict XVI to conclude that the new ecumenism is not a diplomatic building of bridges, but a bold establishment of a new kind of Anglicanism within the greater fold of the Catholic Church. Fr Dwight Longenecker on Anglican Catholics Then and Now ~ Catholic Online

Now this is weird

Hundreds of snapper wash up on beaches Interesting but not earth shaking but from Canada Hundreds of dead fish 'a natural occurrence And from Florida Cold snaps blamed for dead fish found floating in Spruce Creek Not forgetting Maryland Massive fish kill reported in Chesapeake Bay And Brazil We also have multiple reports of birds falling dead from the sky in Arkansas as well as dead fish in the Arkansas River and Louisiana. Coinicidence and is it happening elsewhere where reports are slower to get out?

Anthropogenic Geo-Political Warming

Anthropogenic Geo-Political Warming (AGW) Political Scientists today confirmed the human race risks extinction due to the uncontrolled increase of AGW, more commonly known as Anthropogenic Geo-Political Warming, pointing to the disappearance of the Cold War due to unprecedented man-made political activity. Skeptics have pointed out that it may be economics, and not politics that moved us out of a Cold War. Politics may be a by-product of human activity, and not a causal factor. Political expression, they argue, doesn’t automatically require establishment of a world government and new taxes. The United Nations has called for the establishment of a world government and new taxes to combat man-made Geo-Political Warming. UN Spokesman for the Geo-Political Environment puts the blame squarely on Western Democratic principles. Western Democracies have long since exhibited an excess of freedom and therefore a disproportional output in political discourse, which is said to be behind

For the love of kids

A PAEDOPHILE has reportedly made a deathbed confession that Madeleine McCann was kidnapped to order. Raymond Hewlett, who was a suspect in the case, reportedly wrote to his son, Wayne, with details, The Sun said. In the letter, Hewlett claimed she had been stolen to order by a gypsy gang who kidnap children for wealthy couples unable to have kids or adopt. I didn't notice this news article when it came out, and I have no idea how credible it is - it just sounds too bizarre to be believable. But then again, I am assured the main criteria around procuring children, is that they go to parents, natural or otherwise, that will love them and treat them well. A wealthy couple desperate to have a child would surely fit that criteria? For a greater cause? [Yes, I'm using real life to make a silly point. Don't blame me, blame real life. Just because it's bizarre, stupid and unfair doesn't mean it doesn't happen, I guess.]


Pope Benedict XVI denounced the "vile and murderous" New Year's Day killing of 21 Egyptian Christians, and was rebuked by Egypt's top Muslim cleric for an "unacceptable interference in Egypt's affairs." Bombs also killed two people in Baghdad, Iraq, on Dec. 30 in the latest attacks on the Christian minority there. In two other recent outbreaks of what Benedict has denounced as "Christianophobia," six people were killed at two Christian churches in northeastern Nigeria on Christmas Eve. At least six were injured by a bomb at a Catholic church on the island of Jolo in the Philippines on Dec. 25. It's actually not a comprehensive list - attacks on innocent Christians by radical Muslims seems to be on the increase. For all the respect Muslims demand over their holy periods, Muslim terrorists seem to favour Christmas and Easter as great times to go killing. Check out Jihad watch for the latest information

Gay activism using babies

"What we are hoping that, by having a surrogate son, Sir Elton will make the whole concept more socially acceptable." That's Barrie Drewitt-Barlow, one of the men who advised Elton John, from the article in today's Dominion Post Meet Dad and Dad: a morality tale for our times . Except the original article from The Telegraph is titled Elton John baby: "Thanks to Zacahary, gay surrogacy will become more acceptable" .

Note to self

When sweeping up leaves near flowering hydrangeas, don't wear a floral dress, as bumblebees are likely to get confused and fly into the dress, thus getting trapped and maybe even stinging you.