“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Romans Treated to African Cultural Enrichment - Europe Gets Merkeled

Ciao Italia

Cultural Enrichment in London

Paris Gets Enrichened - Please Don't Push

Making Merkel - Agitation & Propaganda 




    EU foreign ministers have agreed to restrict exports of inflatable boats and outboard motors to Libya in a drive to curb the smuggling of migrants.
    The restrictions will not apply to legitimate Libyan businesses, such as fishing crews, an EU statement said.
    It is not clear how the EU will check that such exports do not end up in the wrong hands in the lawless country.
    Meanwhile Luxembourg has warned that EU funds may be helping to drive migrants into Libyan "concentration camps".
    Many migrants exploited by people-smuggling gangs in Libya have suffered brutality, including sexual abuse. The country is plagued by violence and lawlessness.
    More than 88,000 migrants have crossed the Mediterranean to Italy so far this year, and more than a quarter of them arrived in June alone.
    The numbers are higher than in the first half of last year.

    1. Europeans are realizing that their immigration policy is unsustainable. The migration crisis that has been central to the European political drama since 2014 is rapidly changing.

      You can see signs of change everywhere, from subtle intensifications of bureaucratic language to an increasing frankness about what the migration crisis has done to Europe’s nations and societies. It also shows up in the numbers. The overall rate of migration into Europe is starting to decline, but the number of migrants who are dying in their attempt is going up. But you can see it most of all in the willingness of European leaders to tell the truth. Just in the past ten days, you can see a shift. European Council president Donald Tusk admitted that most of the people coming in have no right to do so: “In most of the cases, and that is actually the case on the central Mediterranean route, we’re talking clearly and manifestly about economic migrants.” He added, “They get to Europe illegally, they do not have any documents which would allow them to enter the European soil.” In other words, these primarily aren’t refugees fleeing war, they’re economic migrants, who are coming in to countries along the southern Mediterranean that already suffer massive unemployment. The reality is sinking in within the member states as well. Aydan Ozoguz, the German commissioner for immigration, refugees, and integration, admitted this week that three-quarters of the refugees Germany took in recently will still be unemployed in five years.

      Read more at:

  2. Canada should show fraternal compassion and open the gates for additional cultural enrichment.

  3. It's fine to report when a refugee's been charged with a crime

    Are Canadian media outlets trying to cover up possible crimes committed by Syrian refugees in Canada?

    A man was arrested last weekend, after several teenage girls reported him to authorities at West Edmonton Mall. During a gathering for families that work at the University of Alberta, the man allegedly “both followed and inappropriately touched at least six teen girls while swimming in the park,” said police spokesperson Scott Pattison.

    Soleiman Hajj Soleiman, a refugee from Syria, has been charged with six counts of sexual assault and six counts of sexual interference.

    The complainants were all under the age of 16. Young teenage girls, allegedly violated at a Saturday evening gathering with their families. This is disturbing, to say the very least.

    What is equally problematic, however, is the way this story was covered in the mainstream media – many of whom were primarily concerned about possible backlash that would come from identifying the alleged perpetrator.


    In a follow-up story, the CBC included a sub-headline that quotes Huque saying the man’s nationality and status are “not relevant to the story.”

    But that is not true.

    First, when a person commits a crime or is alleged to have committed a crime, they no longer have the right to remain anonymous. Especially when it comes to a potential pedophile. The public has a right to know.

    Second, when non-citizens are accused of committing crimes in Canada, their status is almost always included in the story. That’s because committing a serious crime in Canada – including sexual assault – is grounds for deportation.

    It’s relevant to the story because it affects the punishment that will be levied if this man is convicted of the crimes he has been charged with.

    Third, Canadians have a right to know how the Syrian refugee program is panning out. Are we doing everything we can to ensure that Syrian refugees integrate properly into Canada?

    The CBC article, however, suggests we not ask these questions. It seems some are more concerned about the Syrian community in Canada than they are about the teenage girls who say they’ve been violated.

    In Canada, women and girls should be able to go to a public swimming pool without fear of being assaulted. They should be free to wear a bathing suit – a bikini even – if they so please. This isn’t the Middle East, and women should not have to cover up and wear hijabs and niqabs just to protect themselves from sexual predators.

    If we want to welcome thousands of refugees from a part of the world where women do not enjoy basic rights and freedoms, we must be prepared to ask ourselves some tough questions.

    And we can’t hide the facts of a story just because they go against the narrative and agenda being promoted by Justin Trudeau and the CBC.

  5. Public schools in Calgary, Canada are struggling to integrate often-violent Syrian migrants into the education system, according to internal documents from the Calgary Board of Education.

    Obtained by news outlet The Rebel in a freedom of information request, the documents reveal a clash of cultures taking place in the region’s schools between Syrian students and Canadian students and teachers.

    The documents show a pattern of threats and physical violence directed at Canadian children by the Syrian migrants, who have struggled to accept Canadian values of tolerance, gender equality and religious pluralism. School officials have struggled to keep the Syrian students from punching, slapping and even throwing rocks at the other students.

    Girls aren’t exempt from the physical abuse, either.

    In one email, an elementary school teacher noted the “rough treatment” a first grade girl has received from some of the Syrian boys


    A story revealing how a Canadian elementary school has allowed refugee students to physically abuse their classmates and go unpunished was removed Sunday morning, with little explanation other than a nod towards the “sensitive” nature of the subject.

    Nova Scotia newspaper The Chronicle Herald published a story on Friday evening titled “Parents worried over school kids’ brutality at Chebucto Heights Elementary School.” The story revealed parents’ fears over the abuse their children have suffered at the hands of newly-enrolled refugee students.

    By Sunday morning, however, The Herald had pulled the story. In its place, the newspaper left a short statement explaining that: “Bullying is a sensitive subject. So is the integration of newcomers, particularly those who have faced challenges, even trauma, on their way here.”

    In one particularly disturbing anecdote from the story (a cached version of which can still be found online), a woman tells how two refugee students have repeatedly used a chain to try and choke her third-grade daughter. One of the attackers reportedly yelled “Muslims rule the world!” while choking the girl. According to the mother, school staff broke up the assault but didn’t punish either of the attackers.

    Another mother told how her daughter was slapped in the face by a refugee student, and is scared to return to school because of the bullying from her foreign classmates. The mother claimed the school never told her about her daughter’s assault and refuses to return her phone calls.

  7. Illegal In The U.S. And Wish To Immigrate To Canada?

    Since the recent U.S. election and talk of mass deportations, many people wish to immigrate to Canada. You may be wondering:

    1. Will your illegal status in the United States render you ineligible to immigrate to Canada?

    Your illegal status in the U.S. will not render you ineligible to immigrate to Canada unless issues of criminality are involved. Even then, there is not an automatic disqualification and Abrams & Krochak will advise you on a case-by-case basis.

    2. Can the Immigration process take place while you continue to reside in the United States?
    With our assistance, you will create an Express Entry Online Profile, and if you are invited by Citizenship and Immigration Canada to apply for Permanent Residence in Canada, the majority of the Application process takes place online. Therefore, if no interview is deemed necessary by Immigration officials (which applies to the majority of cases filed by Abrams & Krochak, to date), your place of residence is irrelevant and you can continue to reside in the U.S. during the immigration process (subject to U.S. Immigration laws and enforcement proceedings). Place of residence only becomes relevant if your file must be transferred to a Canadian visa office for further processing and/or the scheduling of an Immigration interview and we can address this issue with you prior to/after your engagement of our services, should you have any questions/concerns.

    Get Started! Click on the FREE ASSESSMENT Button Below and Complete Your Online Questionnaire.

    1. I think the Canadians would assess I'd not make a good Canadian.

      I believe in free speech, for instance.


    Sexual assaults & ‘shocking’ violence involving migrants mar German town fair - police

    Published time: 17 Jul, 2017 13:16 Edited time: 18 Jul, 2017 09:00

    A German town's summer fair turned violent over the weekend, with multiple sexual assaults reported. A group of youths also attacked visitors and officers, with police stating that many of the offenders were migrants.

    The violence occurred while residents of Schorndorf in the southern German state of Baden-Wuerttemberg celebrated the town's weeklong fair, referred to as Volksfest (People's Festival).

    However, while many were enjoying carnival rides and German beer on Friday – the first day of the fair – at least three sexual assaults occurred in the town, resulting in the detention of an Iraqi suspect.

    “On Friday evening, police reported three incidents of sexual harassment of women and men at the market place. In one case an Iraqi suspect has been determined,” a police statement said.

    A 17-year-old girl was the victim of a separate sexual assault on Saturday, after three men held her and “grabbed her buttocks” outside the town's main rail station. Three Afghan asylum seekers were identified as suspects, according to police.

    Meanwhile, around 1,000 youths and young men gathered at the grounds of Schorndorf Castle on Saturday, throwing bottles at festival-goers and police.

    “The violence faced by police was shocking,” a police spokesperson said, as quoted by German media.

    When police began arresting one person on suspicion of causing serious bodily harm, others within the group “showed solidarity” with the man and intensified their assault against officers, according to law enforcement officials.

    Police then called for backup, prompting more officers to arrive at the scene in riot gear, "to shield the arrest and to prevent an attack."

    Authorities also called in support from nearby towns, to prepare for what they referred to as "massive potential for violence."

    Groups of between 30 and 50 young men were later seen acting aggressively throughout the town on Saturday, with eyewitnesses, cited by police, stating that some were armed with knives. One man reportedly had a blank-firing gun.

    Police also reported damage to two of their vehicles, which were sprayed with graffiti.

    In addition, an emergency services vehicle was "damaged by a bottle shot, and license plates were removed and stolen on six vehicles," the police report states.

    Later, authorities registered numerous complaints filed over serious bodily harm during the violence.

    Germany experienced an influx of asylum seekers during the European refugee crisis, with Chancellor Angela Merkel implementing an open-door policy for those fleeing war and persecution.

    That policy has been condemned by Merkel's critics, who cite a surge in violence associated with refugees, including a string of sexual assaults that took place in Cologne on New Year's Eve in 2015.

    1. Merkel: No, We’re Not Putting A Limit On New Refugees
      JAZZ SHAWPosted at 10:01 am on July 18, 2017

      It seems you can’t talk about Germany these days without dragging Turkey into the conversation and that’s particularly true of the ongoing refugee crisis. Chancellor Angela Merkel sat down for an interview this week and was asked about the refugee situation and whether or not she might consider a cap on incoming immigrants in light of all the problems they’ve been experiencing. Despite some of her previous statements during the current election campaign, Merkel flatly rejected the idea of limiting the number they would accept. (Deutsche Welle)....

  9. June 25. Four Iraqi men sexually assaulted three girls, aged 13, 15 and 16, at a public swimming pool in Kassel. A 35-year-old migrant from Romania sexually assaulted two girls, aged 12 and 13, at a public swimming pool in Stuttgart. The man was questioned and released.

    June 26. The Berlin Labor Court ordered the city-state of Berlin to pay €6,900 ($7,900) — the equivalent of two months' pay — to a Muslim teacher whose job application at a grammar school was rejected because she wears a headscarf. Berlin's Neutrality Law (Neutralitätsgesetz) prohibits teachers from wearing conspicuous religious symbols at state schools, but the Federal Constitutional Court (Bundesverfassungsgericht) has ruled that a general prohibition of Muslim headscarves is unconstitutional unless there is a concrete threat to security. In February, the National Labor Court of Berlin-Brandenburg awarded a Muslim woman compensation of almost €8,600 ($9,800) after her job application was rejected because she wore a headscarf. The judges ruled that it was a violation of the Equal Treatment Act (Gleichbehandlungsgesetz).

    June 27. A "southern-looking" (südländisch aussehenden) man raped a woman at a park in downtown Cologne. Two "dark-skinned" men (dunkelhäutigen Männer) sexually assaulted a 52-year-old woman in Hüfingen.

    June 28. A 23-year-old migrant from Iraq was arrested in Immenstaad on Lake Constance on charges of being a war criminal. After the man — who arrived in Germany as a refugee at the height of the migrant crisis in late 2015 — reportedly threatened to kill a roommate at a migrant shelter in Böblingen, police found three mobile phones in his room. One of the phones contained a picture of him posing alongside the decapitated heads of six jihadists from the Islamic State. The photo was created sometime between December 2013 and September 2015 when the man was an Iraqi soldier. The Attorney General's office in Stuttgart said the man was guilty of "mocking the slain combatants and degrading them in their death" which "should be seen as a war crime...according to the criminal code (Völkerstrafgesetzbuch and Strafgesetzbuch)."

    June 29. Mohammad Hussain Rashwani, a 38-year-old migrant from Syria tried to behead 64-year-old Ilona Fugmann at a beauty salon in Herzberg. Less than a year earlier, Fugmann had offered Rashwani a job as a hair stylist at her salon and German media praised him as an exemplar of successful integration. Fugmann and her husband Michael were said to have bestowed "infinite goodness and magnanimity" toward Rashwani. In the weeks leading up to the attack, however, Mohammad reportedly had found it difficult to subordinate himself to his female boss. "I am still convinced that it is 100% correct to help other people, but we have to admit that in this case our attempts at integration have failed," Michael concluded.

    June 30. The German Parliament approved a controversial law to fine social media networks up to €50 million euros ($57 million) if they fail to remove so-called hate speech. The Network Enforcement Act (Netzwerkdurchsetzungsgesetz, NetzDG), commonly referred to as the "Facebook law," gives social media networks 24 hours to delete or block "obviously criminal offenses" (offenkundig strafbare Inhalte) and seven days to deal with less clear-cut cases. German Justice Minister Heiko Maas said the measure to "end the internet law of the jungle." Critics say the law will restrict free speech because social media networks, fearing high penalties, will delete posts without checking whether they are within the legal limits and should actually remain online. Others say the real purpose of the law is to silence criticism of the government's open door migration policy, as well as multiculturalism and the rise of Islam in Germany, ahead of the federal elections on September 24, 2017.

      Flood of migration continues all over Western Europe despite rising dangers.
      July 18, 2017 Joseph Klein

      The European migration experiment is failing miserably. Self-declared “refugees” and migrants from Africa and the Middle East are importing their violence, chaos and regressive norms of behavior into formerly harmonious countries all over Western Europe. As Seth J. Frantzman wrote in the Jerusalem Post last December, “They hate the very society they have often chosen to migrate to. Their new society tolerated their intolerance and taught them that this new country provided such unfettered freedom that it should be destroyed.”

      For example, while many French people were busy celebrating Bastille Day – a year after the tragic Islamist massacre in Nice - riots and violence reportedly broke out on the nights of July 13 and 14 in suburbs of Paris heavily populated by migrants. A policeman was badly wounded and 897 cars were burned. Hundreds of individuals were placed in custody.

      There was also a riot in the streets of Paris a few days ago by a mob of angry Congolese. They were infuriated by a scheduled concert at Paris's Olympia music hall by a Congolese artist thought to be too close to the government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo they detest. The concert was cancelled as a result of the clashes and threats of more violence. The Congolese living in Paris brought their tribal hatreds to the land that gave them the opportunity to leave such hatreds behind. They abused the freedoms they were afforded, turning on those freedoms by violently preventing an artistic performance from taking place.

      These are far from isolated incidents of migrant violence in Western Europe this year. Indeed, all is not well for the Western traditions of pluralism and individual liberties in the multicultural sewer Europe is fast becoming. The number of vehicular killings, stabbings, shootings, sexual assaults, riots and car burnings has risen exponentially in France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark and Norway, as the tide of migration has intensified. No-go zones have multiplied. Free speech is becoming a casualty of hecklers’ veto and misplaced multicultural sensitivities. Yet Europe continues to admit even more migrants without any adequate vetting.

      "When people lose hope, they risk crossing the Sahara and the Mediterranean because it is worse to stay at home, where they run enormous risks,” Antonio Tajani, president of the European Parliament, said. “If we don't confront this soon, we will find ourselves with millions of people on our doorstep within five years. Today we are trying to solve a problem of a few thousand people, but we need to have a strategy for millions of people."

      A majority of Europeans agree that the waves of immigration into their countries have been getting out of hand. However, for the elitist leaders in Europe, spearheaded by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, an open borders policy remains the Holy Grail. Opposing continued mass migration into Europe is tantamount to hate speech, they believe. Thus, Chancellor Merkel was overheard last fall on a hot mic asking Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg what more he planned to do to stop anti-immigrant posts. Facebook is cooperating with actions to remove comments that it claims "promote xenophobia.".....

    2. We should be taking in Christian refugees, not Moslem 'refugees'. Europe should be doing the same -

      Christian leaders in the Middle East call for aid -- while the international community looks the other way.
      July 18, 2017 Raymond Ibrahim

      Reprinted from The Gatestone Institute.

      Raymond Ibrahim is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

      The uptick in often lethal persecution of Christians in Muslim regions has caused many Christian leaders to appeal for aid. Canon Andrew White, the prominent minister known as the “Vicar of Baghdad” told Fox News in March, “If there is anything I can tell Americans it is that your fellow brothers and sisters are suffering, they are desperate for help,” he said. “And it is not just a matter of praying for peace. They need a lot – food, resources, clothes, everything. They need everything.”

      White also went as far as to say that Christianity in Iraq, where it has been since the times of the apostles, is finished.

      WP QUADS Content Ad Plugin v. 1.4.6

      As Fox News reported:

      “Thirty years ago, there were approximately 1.4 million Christians in Iraq. The number dwindled to around 1 million after the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003, and a year ago it was estimated that there were less than 250,000 left. Numbers have continued to decline as families flee, and today even approximate figures are difficult to obtain.”

      According to a Vatican Radio report, Nigerian Catholic Bishop Joseph Bagobiri responded to “the recent atrocities of Fulani [Muslim] Cattle herdsmen…, which resulted in the deaths of thousands of Christians and the destruction of property worth millions of Naira,” by calling on all Christian denominations to implement counter measures against the “systematic elimination of Christianity in the northern part of Nigeria.”....

  10. Meanwhile, the GOP-controlled Congress can't seem to pass any meaningful law or do anything except to prove they are still the same old phony bullshit artists they have ever been.

    1. Drudge Headlines Tell The Tale -

      Dem Govs Eye White House...
      Donors buzzing about Kamala...
      Health bill collapse leaves divided Republicans at crossroads...
      GINGRICH: Real danger of Speaker Pelosi...
      Dollar falls to 10-month low amid doubts that Trump can fulfill promises...
      POLL: Voters Don't See Pence As Replacement...


    2. Looking at it from the bright side, perhaps if nothing is done things don't get any worse.

    3. Trump has reduced the number of illegal immigrants crossing into the USA from the south.

      He ordered the laws to be enforced.

      That's something.

    4. The GOP couldn't pass the new healthcare law because it was unpassable (is that a word?). Please stop throwing shit on the wall to see if it sticks.

    5. Let me rephrase that: GOP led Congress: Please stop throwing shit on the wall to see if it sticks.

    6. un·pass·a·ble
      impossible to travel along or over; impassable.
      "some roads are completely unpassable because of flood waters"

    7. Ok, impassable, inpassable, regardless, it was shitty attempt.

  11. From the "They're All Dicks" Department -

    Ex-Speaker Dennis Hastert released from federal prison
    Aamer Madhani , USA TODAY Published 8:48 a.m. ET July 18, 2017 | Updated 9:24 a.m. ET July 18, 2017

    Dennis Hastert prison
    (Photo: Andrew Link, The Rochester Post-Bulletin, AP)

    CHICAGO — Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert has been released from a federal prison 13 months after he began serving a sentence for a bank fraud conviction linked to his effort to buy the silence of a former student he sexually abused during his days as a high school wrestling coach.

    Hastert, 75, pleaded guilty to illegal structuring of bank withdrawals as part of an effort to circumvent federal banking laws as he went about paying off someone identified in court as "Individual A" for abuse that occurred more than 30 years ago during his years as a teacher and coach in Yorkville, Ill.

    The former speaker served about 13 months of a 15-month sentence, according to federal prison records, and now faces two years of supervised release and lawsuits from former students who say they were victims of Hastert.

    The ex-speaker is now under the supervision of a residential re-entry management field office based in Chicago, Bureau of Prisons records show.

    Hastert told prosecutors he paid Individual A about half of a $3.5 million off-the-books agreement to keep quiet about the abuse. Individual A sued Hastert, seeking payment for the remaining $1.8 million he says Hastert still owes him.

    The statutes of limitation long expired for the sex abuse, but prosecutors said they identified at least five individuals sexually abused by Hastert during his years as an educator before he launched his political career in the early 1980s.

    Before Judge Thomas Durkin handed down the sentence, Hastert acknowledged he abused Individual A and other boys in his charge.

    “I want to apologize to the boys I mistreated when I was a coach,” he said. “They looked (up) at me and I took advantage of them.”

    The former speaker served 20 years in Congress and eight years as the highest-ranking member of the House before retiring in 2007. He is the longest serving Republican speaker in history.

    At his sentencing last year, Durkin called Hastert a "serial child molester" and ordered him to attend a sex offender treatment program.

    "Nothing is more disturbing than having serial child molester and speaker of the House in the same sentence," Durkin said.

  12. Finally, A Poll Trump Will Like: Clinton Is Even More Unpopular

    Trump’s 2016 Democratic rival is viewed favorably by just 39 percent of Americans in the latest Bloomberg National Poll, two points lower than the president. It’s the second-lowest score for Clinton since the poll started tracking her in September 2009.

    The former secretary of state has always been a polarizing figure, but this survey shows she’s even lost popularity among those who voted for her in November.

    More than a fifth of Clinton voters say they have an unfavorable view of her. By comparison, just 8 percent of likely Clinton voters felt that way in the final Bloomberg poll before the election, and just 6 percent of Trump’s voters now say they view him unfavorably.....

  13. Hinduism and Its Complicated History With Cows
    By Wendy Doniger
    July 18, 2017

    Just this past June, at a national meeting of various Hindu organizations in India, a popular preacher, Sadhvi Saraswati, suggested that those who consumed beef should be publicly hanged. Later, at the same conclave, an animal rights activist, Chetan Sharma, said,

    “Cow is also the reason for global warming. When she is slaughtered, something called EPW is released, which is directly responsible for global warming. It’s what is called emotional pain waves.”

    These provocative remarks come at a time when vigilante Hindu groups in India are lynching people for eating beef. Such killings have increased since Narendra Modi and his right-wing Bharatiya Janata party came to power in September 2014. In September 2015, a 50-year-old Muslim man, Mohammad Akhlaq, was lynched by a mob in a village near New Delhi on suspicion that he had consumed beef. Since then, many attacks by cow vigilante groups have followed. Modi’s government has also prohibited the slaughter of buffalo, thus destroying the Muslim-dominated buffalo meat industry and causing widespread economic hardship.

    Most people seem to assume that no Hindu has ever consumed beef. But is this true?

    As a scholar, studying Sanskrit and ancient Indian religion for over 50 years, I know of many texts that offer a clear answer to this question.

    Cows in ancient Indian history
    Scholars have known for centuries that the ancient Indians ate beef. After the fourth century B.C., when the practice of vegetarianism spread throughout India among Buddhists, Jains and Hindus, many Hindus continued to eat beef.

    In the time of the oldest Hindu sacred text, the Rig Veda (c. 1500 B.C.), cow meat was consumed. Like most cattle-breeding cultures, the Vedic Indians generally ate the castrated steers, but they would eat the female of the species during rituals or when welcoming a guest or a person of high status.

    Ancient ritual texts known as Brahmanas (c. 900 B.C.) and other texts that taught religious duty (dharma), from the third century B.C., say that a bull or cow should be killed to be eaten when a guest arrives.

    According to these texts, “the cow is food.” Even when one passage in the “Shatapatha Brahmana” ( forbids the eating of either cow or bull, a revered ancient Hindu sage named Yajnavalkya immediately contradicts it, saying that, nevertheless, he eats the meat of both cow and bull, “as long as it’s tender.”

    Cows painted over a door are believed to bring good luck.
    Ross Funnell, CC BY-NC-ND
    It was the Sanskrit epic, the Mahabharata (composed between 300 B.C. and A.D. 300) that explained the transition to the non eating of cows in a famous myth:

    1. “Once, when there was a great famine, King Prithu took up his bow and arrow and pursued the Earth to force her to yield nourishment for his people. The Earth assumed the form of a cow and begged him to spare her life; she then allowed him to milk her for all that the people needed.”

      This myth imagines a transition from hunting wild cattle to preserving their lives, domesticating them, and breeding them for milk, a transition to agriculture and pastoral life. It visualizes the cow as the paradigmatic animal that yields food without being killed.

      Beef-eating and caste
      Some dharma texts composed in this same period insist that cows should not be eaten. Some Hindus who did eat meat made a special exception and did not eat the meat of cow. Such people may have regarded beef-eating in the light of what the historian Romila Thapar describes as a “matter of status” – the higher the caste, the greater the food restrictions. Various religious sanctions were used to impose prohibition on beef eating, but, as Thapar demonstrates, “only among the upper castes.”

      As I see it, the arguments against eating cows are a combination of a symbolic argument about female purity and docility (symbolized by the cow who generously gives her milk to her calf), a religious argument about Brahmin sanctity (as Brahmins came increasingly to be identified with cows and to be paid by donations of cows) and a way for castes to rise in social ranking.

      Sociologist M. N. Srinivas pointed out that the lower castes gave up beef when they wanted to move up the social ladder through the process known as “Sanskritization.”

      By the 19th century, the cow-protection movement had arisen. One of the implicit objects of this movement was the oppression of Muslims.

      Famously, Gandhi attempted to make vegetarianism, particularly the taboo against eating beef, a central tenet of Hinduism. Gandhi’s attitude to cows was tied to his idea of nonviolence.

      He used the image of the Earth cow (the one that King Prithu milked) as a kind of Mother Earth, to symbolize his imagined Indian nation. His insistence on cow protection was a major factor in his failure to attract large-scale Muslim support.

      Yet even Gandhi never called for the banning of cow slaughter in India. He said,

      “How can I force anyone not to slaughter cows unless he is himself so disposed? It is not as if there were only Hindus in the Indian Union. There are Muslims, Parsis, Christians and other religious groups here.”

      Today’s India
      From my perspective, in our day, the nationalist and fundamentalist “Hindutva” (“Hindu-ness”) movement is attempting to use this notion of the sanctity of the cow to disenfranchise Muslims. And it is not only the beef-eating Muslims (and Christians) who are the target of Hindutva’s hate brigade. Lower-caste Hindus are also being attacked. Attacks of this type are not new. This has been going on since Hindutva began in 1923. And indeed, in 2002, in a north Indian town, five lower-caste Hindus were lynched for skinning a cow.

      But, as local analysis shows, the violence has greatly increased under the Modi government. IndiaSpend, a data journalism initiative, found that “Muslims were the target of 51 percent of violence centered on bovine issues over nearly eight years (2010 to 2017) and comprised 86 percent of 28 Indians killed in 63 incidents…As many of 97 percent of these attacks were reported after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government came to power in May 2014.”

      In 2015, in the western Indian state of Gujarat, lower-caste Hindus were flogged for skinning a dead cow, triggering spontaneous street protests and contributing to the resignation of the state’s chief minister.

      The ConversationAs these and so many other recent attacks demonstrate, cows – innocent, docile animals – have become in India a lightning rod for human cruelty, in the name of religion.

      Wendy Doniger, Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions, University of Chicago

    2. Speaking of cows, PETA, the animal rights terrorist group will be honoring 20 cows killed in a truck accident on their way to be made in to yummy steaks. " A rat is a pig is a dog is a boy." According to Ingrid Newkirk, the terrorist group's founder.

  14. For Pete's sake, the media need to get over Trump's weird handshakes

    by Kevin Glass, contributor | Jul 17, 2017, 10:00 PM

    Portraying President Trump's handshake with Emmanuel Macron as a significant issue is to treat the presidency like celebrity. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

    We're on Day Four of Trump Handshake Analysis, and it's unclear if the crisis is going to end any time soon.

    For the uninitiated, on Friday, President Trump said goodbye to France and its president, Emmanuel Macron. Trump shook Macron's hand in an odd way and set off a media firestorm.

    Let's get this out of the way first: The way that Trump shakes hands is weird. It's also one of the least-important things about him, considering that he is president of the United States, the leader of the free world, and possibly the most powerful person in the world.

    The media has had a frenzy about this handshake. A piece in The Atlantic called it "a play in four acts."

    "Shake hands like a normal person," exhorted Esquire writer Jack Holmes. An Associated Press report called it a "white knuckle handshake" and then separately broke down every single presidential handshake. CNN published a "second-by-second analysis" and spoke to "body language experts" to discuss the handshake.

    None of these things matter. Trump is in the midst of a potential meltdown over the Republican healthcare bill, a campaign scandal involving his son, a "Made in America" week and more, while media expends undue effort on 30 seconds of pleasantries last week. The 24-hour cable and Internet news ecosystem makes the breadth of what the media can do almost infinite, but this stretches even those limits.

    More than that, news coverage like this is actively harmful to our polity. It covers the president as a celebrity. Trump rose to prominence as a celebrity and got his political start due to name recognition. The media has long covered whoever is president as a pseudocelebrity and dropped the charade with the ascension of Trump.

    The power of the office of the president has expanded exponentially in the last couple of decades, and the media's treatment of the person in the office has fed the conception of an all-important man. Cato Institute Vice President Gene Healy has termed this "The Cult of the Presidency," and while it has been a bipartisan exercise, the news media has played an important role. Treating the president with the superficiality of a celebrity feeds the popular conception that the office itself is what matters, not what the office can do.

    The number of handshakes the president will give over the course of his term is astronomical. Analyzing each one with a four-day news cycle would require bending the rules of time itself. Stop this madness.

    Kevin Glass (@KevinWGlass) is a contributor to the Washington Examiner's Beltway Confidential blog.

    1. .

      Come on, you have to admit that was one crazy handshake.

      I was starting to feel sorry for Melania. She was initially left out of the epic poignée de main au trois and seemed to be trying to force her way in. Luckily, Macron's wife eventually noticed, took pity on her, and tried to make up for the initial snub.


  15. How to persuade China to abandon North Korea

    It's time to consider what was once unthinkable: Removing U.S. troops from the Korean Peninsula.
    By TODD ROSENBLUM 07/18/2017 05:25 AM EDT

    As North Korea rapidly develops the ability to strike the mainland United States with a nuclear missile, the Trump administration has adopted a well-known strategy: demand China do more to pressure Pyongyang. But American presidents have pressed Beijing to rein in North Korea for the past 25 years with little success. There’s no reason to believe Trump’s efforts will end any differently. Without China pulling the plug on North Korea, the crisis will not abate.

    The U.S., then, could soon face two horrible options: start a catastrophic war that would kill hundreds of thousands of South Koreans or live with a nuclear-armed North Korea capable of striking Washington.

    It’s a frightening possibility, one that Trump and other top U.S. policymakers must do everything to avoid. But if we really want to block the North’s nuclear program without another Korean War, it requires us to think carefully about what could actually persuade China to cut off its support for the North Korean regime. And that leads us to a previously unthinkable idea: giving real consideration to removing all American troops from a unified peninsula in exchange for China proactively leading the transition to a unified Korea. Though it has been unthinkable for years—and still may be—such a deal would also create a kind of leverage that nothing else has.

    The United States has spent more than a quarter century imploring China to pressure North Korea to give up its nuclear ambitions and be a responsible member of the international community, dating as far back as the 1990s when I was a delegate to the Four Party Peace Talk for the Korean Peninsula. We have tried sticks—diplomatic and economic sanctions—against China and we have tried honey, praising Beijing for half steps it has taken to pressure Pyongyang. We have sought an international consensus through the United Nations and have made China a co-equal, central actor in peace and security talks. Nothing has persuaded Beijing to abandon its lifeline to the North Korean state.

    China has taken a few steps toward reining in North Korea, such as cutting off coal exports earlier this year. But it has not wavered in its view that a unified, Western-oriented peninsula would be far more threatening to its core national security interests than anything the North Korean state has done or will do. Unification, China believes, likely would end with the U.S. military on its border, an unacceptable risk. In turn, China has refused to take the necessary steps to really damage the North Korean regime, such as closing its border, blocking the flow of North Korean worker remittances, or enforcing a blockade against North Korean shipping.

    After Trump entered office, his administration quickly realized the threat posed by North Korea and has made it a top issue, even offering to relax some of his trade demands if Chinese President Xi Jinping would offer more help with North Korea. But in Trump’s first six months, little has changed. Pyongyang has continued to test missiles, including recently conducting its first successful ICBM test, while China has continued to protect the regime of Kim Jong Un—as Trump himself acknowledged earlier this month when he tweeted, “so much for China working with us.”

    Perhaps, then, we need to ask ourselves some very hard questions about what we are really willing to give to get Chinese support for fully ending its backing of the North Korean regime. What will it take for Beijing to change its calculus on unification? Are there things China believes worth it to give up on its buffer state against the United States?

    1. The answer is yes. In fact, many national security experts know what the Chinese would demand: China wants the U.S. military off the peninsula. South Korea is a vital defense, security and trade partner of the United States. There are nearly 30,000 U.S. troops stationed on South Korean soil, down from more than 300,000 Americans who were stationed in Korea in 1951 but still a significant number. The U.S. and South Korea are also treaty allies; Washington is obligated to defend South Korea if attacked.

      Here’s how a deal could work: The U.S. would remove all 30,000 troops from South Korea and close its military bases. We could even consider ending our treaty with South Korea. In return, China would not only cease its support for North Korea but help end the Kim dynasty altogether, leaving behind a unified, democratic Korea that swears off nuclear weapons. The U.S. and China would jointly engage South Korea on its absorption of the North, since South Korea knows the cost of German reunification and is appropriately leery of reintegrating 25 million starved, information-deprived people into a modern state.

      Is eliminating the U.S. military presence on the peninsula a fair price for China finally—and fully—pulling the plug on North Korea? It’s a difficult question with huge security and economic implications, and I’m honestly not sure about the answer. The rapid fall of the Kim regime isn’t even guaranteed under such a deal and there’s a real possibility that a unified Korea would align more closely with China than the U.S., undermining our strength in the region. The U.S.-Japan-South Korean alliance is always under stress, and ending it would take away a core pillar of U.S. policy.

      But unlike our previous strategies on North Korea, this one would at least have a real shot at advancing our strategic interests while avoiding a bloody and destabilizing war. That’s because there’s a lot for Beijing to like in it. A deal would enhance China’s ability to dominate the region as the primary military power. Its muscle flexing has grown exponentially in the past decade, ranging from seizing disputed islands and militarizing self-built artificial reefs, declaring an Air Defense Identification Zone over much of the South and East China Seas, and commencing sea trials of its first aircraft carrier. Withdrawing the massive U.S. military footprint in Korea will further embolden Chinese expansionism.

      How will Koreans themselves feel about foreign powers once again trying to dictate its post-unification self-determination? A unified Korea would have to agree to terms of dismantling, denuclearizing and living with limited power projection. In return, the U.S., China and other countries would donate tens of billions to rebuild the north. That cost must be factored into any consideration of such a deal.

      These are just a small sampling of the large and small issues associated with this idea. Even commencing discussion of a U.S.-China-Korea deal on the future of North Korea would carry huge risks. The Kim dynasty will not allow for a smooth transition; if it believes that its sovereignty is at risk, it could launch a preemptive strike to ensure its survival. We must be ready for all possibilities.

      But with these great risks runs the opportunity to solve the North Korean problem once and for all. We have tried one way for 25 years with little to show in ending today’s dangerous trajectory. Given the stakes, it’s time to consider a new approach—even ideas once considered unthinkable.

      Todd M. Rosenblum was a delegate to the U.S.-China-South Korea-North Korea Four Party Peace Talks in the 1990s. He was a senior official at the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security for the Obama administration from 2009 to 2015. He is a nonresident fellow at The Atlantic Council and serves on the Defense Science Board Task Force on Homeland Defense.

  16. Forcing China’s Hand on North Korea
    Beijing’s corporate shell game enables Pyongyang to avoid sanctions.

    By Daniel Blumenthal and Derek Scissors
    July 17, 2017 5:15 p.m. ET


    The Establishment Doesn’t Want to Implement the Trump Agenda

    You have to understand something: Everything in Washington from the Republicans — the only exemption here is conservatives, genuine conservatives in Washington. And by that I don’t mean everybody who claims to be a conservative. With the exemption of genuine conservatives in Washington, everything in that town is seen through the eyes of the left. And if you don’t understand that, and you’re in Washington, you’re never going to be on the same battlefield that these people are on.

    When people say, “Well, the Republicans are afraid of to do X ’cause of what the media’s gonna say about it,” they are seeing the world through the eyes of the left.

    They’re not seeing it through their own eyes using their own ideology and their own beliefs and principles. They’re looking at everything through the eyes of the left.

    When the media reports stories and makes it sound like everybody in America agrees with their point, that’s what I mean when I say everything is seen through the eyes of the left. The sad thing is that includes most — not all — most Republicans.

  18. T-Rex musta been a Republican -

    T-Rex Couldn’t Run. Doing So Would Have Broken Its Legs.

    In a study published in Peer J Tuesday, a team from the University of Manchester, U.K., demonstrated how a T-rex would move. They used two separate biomechanical approaches to create a computer model simulating how T-Rex would run, if it could. Because their model combined different aspects of bodily analysis, including the stress placed on the skeleton and how its body would move anatomically, the team believe the picture produced is a more accurate depiction of T-Rex’s gait.

    Their findings show that not only was the species unable to run, but it could not even walk very fast. If it were to run, it would have buckled under its own weight and broken its legs, they found. They believe T-Rex’s maximum speed peaked at around 7.7 meters per second, or just over 17 miles per hour (mph). To put that in perspective, Usain Bolt, during the 100-meter sprint, has clocked speeds of over 27 mph.

  19. Much of Europe is fucked -

    Reformers speak out -- and the obstacles they face.
    July 18, 2017 Robert Spencer

    Editor's note: Jihad Watch writer Christine Douglass-Williams' new book, The Challenge of Modernizing Islam: Reformers Speak Out and the Obstacles They Face, is now out now from Encounter Books. Order your copy here. Robert Spencer contributed a Foreword to the book, which we are running below:

    "This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed my favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion.”

    So says Allah in the Qur’an (5:3), in words that have vexed Islamic reformers and would-be reformers throughout the history of the religion. Traditional and mainstream Islamic theology holds that Islam is perfect, bestowed from above by the supreme being, and hence not only is reform unnecessary, it is heresy that makes the reformer worthy of death if he departs from anything Islamic authorities believe to be divinely revealed.

    On the other hand, the cognitive dissonance created by having to believe that the one and only God mandates death for apostasy (Bukhari 6922), stoning for adultery (Bukhari 6829), and amputation of the hand for theft (Qur’an 5:38), and sanctions the sexual enslavement of infidel women (Qur’an 4:3, 4:24, 23:1-6, 33:50, 70:30), the devaluation of a woman’s testimony (Qur’an 2:282) and inheritance rights (Qur’an 4:11), and above all, warfare against and the subjugation of non-Muslims (Qur’an 9:29), has led, particularly in modern times, to attempts by believing Muslims to reconcile Islamic morality with contemporary perspectives and mores.

    These attempts are fraught with peril. As Christine Douglass-Williams notes in this book, “Mahmoud Muhammad Taha, a Sudanese Muslim theologian who argued that the Meccan passages,” which are generally more peaceful, “should take precedence over the Medinan,” which call for warfare against non-Muslims, “instead of the reverse, was executed in 1985 by the Sudanese government for heresy and apostasy.” Some of those profiled in this book know these perils firsthand: “Sheik Subhy Mansour recounted: ‘If these Muslim Brotherhood people had the chance, they would have killed me according to their punishment for apostasy plus they claim I’ll go to hell.’ Tawfik Hamid noted: ‘The reformists were killed throughout history, including those who rejected the Sunnah.’”

    Death threats aren’t the only dangers either. Europe and North America are full of Muslim spokesmen who present themselves as moderate, Westernized reformers, but are actually just the opposite. Foremost among these is Tariq Ramadan, the grandson of Muslim Brotherhood founder Hasan al-Banna, who has been widely hailed as the “Muslim Martin Luther” but has likewise been accused by French journalist Caroline Fourest, who has published a book-length study of Ramadan’s sly duplicity, Brother Tariq, of “remaining scrupulously faithful to the strategy mapped out by his grandfather, a strategy of advance stage by stage” toward the imposition of Islamic law in the West.

    1. Douglass-Williams notes this duplicity: “In a an example of the distinction to be made between moderates and crypto-moderates, after the brutal riots following the release of the Danish cartoons insulting to Muhammad in 2006, Tariq Ramadan, the Swiss-born theologian and grandson of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, Ramadan explained that the reaction of his co-religionists was a ‘a principle of faith…that God and the prophets never be represented.’” One of her interview subjects, Salim Mansur, observes drily that “non-Muslims went to the wrong Muslim for an understanding of the faith.”

      The dominant presence of duplicitous pseudo-reformers such as Ramadan considerably muddies the waters. This confusion couldn’t possibly come at a worse time, when the governments of the West are doing nothing less than staking the very futures of their nations not only upon the existence of Muslim moderates and reformers, but upon their eventual victory within the Islamic community. This gamble has been made despite the fact that there is no general agreement, either inside the Muslim community or outside it, of what “Islamic moderation” actually means, and what “Islamic reform” would really look like.

      Against this backdrop, The Challenge of Modernizing Islam is extraordinary, refreshing, and much needed in numerous ways. The interviews that Christine Douglass-Williams conducts with some of the leading moderate Muslim spokesmen in the United States and Canada are unique in their probing honesty. While most interviewers from all points of the political spectrum generally are so happy and honored to be in the presence of a Muslim who repudiates jihad terror that they serve up only softball questions and are content with vague generalities in response, in this book Douglass-Williams asks the questions that need to be asked, and yet are asked only infrequently: How do you explain the various Qur’an verses that call for violence, or are misogynistic or problematic in other ways? How do you propose to convince the vast majority of your coreligionists of the correctness of your position? How is reform possible when the mainstream schools of Islamic jurisprudence mandate death for heresy and apostasy?

      The answers vary from thought provoking and searchingly honest to cagey and deflective. And that in itself is illuminating. Not every person interviewed in this book is in agreement with every other, and not every attentive and informed reader will come away from these pages convinced that every person here interviewed is being in every instance entirely forthright. Many believe that the resistance to the global jihad in all its forms has no legitimacy, or cannot be successful, if Muslim reformers are not on board with it. I do not share that view, but the need for Islamic reform is undeniable, and the people here interviewed are among its foremost exponents in the West. We owe them a fair hearing as much as they owe us honest answers to the questions here posed.

    2. In the second half of the book, Douglass-Williams offers a probing analysis of what her interview subjects told her, and provides illuminating ways for readers to navigate through the thickets and avoid hazards that have captured and misled numerous analysts of Islam and its prospects for reform. One of the cardinal services she provides here is the drawing of distinctions in numerous areas where crucial differences and delineations have long been obscured, often deliberately. Her discussions of Islam versus Islamism and Islamic moderation versus Islamic reform are a welcome antidote to the sloppy thinking and cant that dominate the public discourse today. Her examination of problematic Islamic texts is all the more welcome for being even rarer. Her discussions of the controversial and manipulative concept of “Islamophobia” and its relationship to the problems of genuine Islamic reform, and to the role of Israel and how it can help distinguish genuine Islamic reformers from pretenders, are the crown and centerpiece of the book, and examples of the kind of searching analysis that is all too often absent from the public square today, and for that all the more needed.

      The Challenge of Modernizing Islam is, therefore, an extremely illuminating book, and not always in the ways that its interview subjects may have intended. That is, as is said these days, not a bug, but a feature. It’s crucial today that genuine reformers be distinguished from insincere deceivers, and naïve idealists from those with genuine plans. Here is a solid beginning in that effort. This book should be read while bearing in mind how the governments of the West are assuming that their newly-accepted Muslim refugees will sooner or later accept the values and mores of the secular West and settle down to become loyal and productive citizens, and how the recent experience of European countries, particularly Sweden, Germany, and France, as well as the United Kingdom, offers abundant reason for concern that this may not be the case.

      That same tension between high hopes and harsh realities runs through these interviews, and doubtless through the souls of many of the interviewees. For better or worse, however, any chance for Western countries, as well as non-Muslim countries in the Far East and elsewhere, to enjoy a peaceful future now depends, courtesy of a series of decisions our political leaders have made, upon the victory of Islamic reform. The Challenge of Modernizing Islam uniquely equips readers to make an informed and intelligent evaluation of how peaceful the future of non-Muslim countries is likely to be.

    3. For better or worse, however, any chance for Western countries, as well as non-Muslim countries in the Far East and elsewhere, to enjoy a peaceful future now depends, courtesy of a series of decisions our political leaders have made, upon the victory of Islamic reform.

    Who really poses the greater threat: Putin or the anti-American Left?
    July 18, 2017 Dennis Prager

    Last week, I tweeted, "The news media in the West pose a far greater danger to Western civilization than Russia does."

    To my surprise, the tweet went viral. And while there were more likes than dislikes, 99 percent of the written reactions were negative.

    Typical reactions were:

    —"F—- you."

    —"Move to Russia."

    —"Your very full diapers pose a very great danger, please change them." That received 1,880 likes.

    —"I've wiped s—- off my shoes more trustworthy and patriotic than your sorry a—." That received 606 likes.

    You get the idea.

    But it wasn't the ad hominem insults that I found troubling. What was troubling was the low state of logical thinking that so many responses reflected. This was exemplified by their reminding me how important a free press is to democracy (as if attacking the behavior of the media were the same as denying the need for a free press); their asking how many nukes the media have compared with Russia (as if a threat to lives were the same as a threat to a civilization); and their thinking that my tweet was about President Donald Trump (he was never mentioned, and the words were just as true when Barack Obama was president).

    My tweet was about the Western left undoing Western civilization. My one regret is that I did not mention universities along with the media.

    The tweet had nothing to do with the existence of a free press. Attacking what the media is doing is not the same as attacking the existence of the media — any more than attacking Trump is attacking the existence of the presidency.

    With regard to Russia having more nukes than the media, those who noted this fact so missed the entire point of the tweet that it is almost breathtaking. When one speaks about dangers to a civilization, one is speaking ideologically, not physically. Of course, if Russia were to unleash its nuclear weapons against the West, it would kill vast numbers of Westerners. However, that would no more mean the end of Western civilization than the Holocaust meant the end of Jewish civilization. Civilization connotes a body of ideas and a value system.

    1. Furthermore, a Russian nuclear attack threatening the West's physical existence is an utterly remote possibility. Russian leaders, just as Soviet leaders before them, fear what is known as MAD (mutually assured destruction).

      The real nuclear threat comes from North Korea and, above all, Iran, which constantly announces its intent to exterminate Israel. But while The New York Times cannot stop writing about the threat Russian President Vladimir Putin poses, it accuses Trump of "demonizing" Iran.

      The real threat to Western civilization is Western civilization ceasing to believe in itself. And, in that regard, Russia poses no danger, while the left-wing-dominated media and universities pose an existential threat.

      That's why the most depressing of the negative reactions were those from people calling themselves conservatives. If conservatism isn't about conserving Western civilization first and foremost, what is it about?

      Students in college have voted the American flag off their campus. Where did these students learn their unprecedented contempt for America and patriotism, if not from their schools and the media?

      European countries continue to welcome in millions of Muslims, adding to the tens of millions of Muslims already in Europe — many of whom, if not most, have no interest in adopting Europe's values. Do the critics of my tweet conclude nothing about the left's role — meaning the role of Western media and academia — in promoting multiculturalism, the doctrine that holds that no cultural, religious or value system is superior to any other?

      At the University of Pennsylvania, its left-wing English department has removed its long-standing portrait of Shakespeare because he was white and male. Is that not a direct hit on Western civilization?

      The left-wing prime minister of Canada has proudly announced, "There is no core identity, no mainstream in Canada," and that Canada is "the first postnational state."

      What produced him? Putin?

      Is it Putin who is removing American flags from American campuses?

      Is Putin destroying the notion of male and female?

      Has Putin convinced half of America's millennials that socialism is preferable to capitalism?

      Did Putin convince Pope Francis that Islamic terrorists are no more of a threat to Europe than baptized Catholics who kill their girlfriends?

      Is Putin the reason Oxford University students voted that Israel is a greater threat to peace than Hamas?

      Putin is indeed a murderous quasi dictator. But all this contempt for Western civilization comes from the Western media and the Western universities.

      The smoking gun was provided just two weeks ago in the media's reactions to President Trump's speech in Warsaw, Poland, in which he called for protecting Western civilization. Virtually the entire Western media said it was a call to protect white racism — because the media deem Western civilization to be nothing more than a euphemism for white supremacy.

      That's what my tweet was about.