Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Away for a bit

Having a holy holiday until Jan 7.


Blessings upon y'all.

HJMW

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Friday, December 21, 2007

Hey, I've got an idea! Why don't we shut down all the trains in Britain for Christmas?

Well, someone thought it was a good idea, apparently.

Still, I've taken a few trains lately, and can't recommend anything better calculated to turn holiday spirit into a murderous frenzy.


"Why can't we have trains at Christmas?"

Leslie Plommer
Thursday December 20, 2007
The Guardian

For new arrivals to these shores, Britain presents many learning opportunities. The festive season is no exception. There is no point, for instance, in trying to act on our railway companies' annual exhortations to book early for "Christmas services". Similarly, anybody who foresees "Christmas rail travel" betokening a trip from A to B on a train, is about to discover the "replacement bus service".
Christmas Day service is, in a word, zero. And Boxing Day, next-to-zero. Indeed, so eroded has the timetable become across the whole festive season that Britons now accept this as normal. But why? Can we not have proper railways that carry us around the country seeing (and crucially, fleeing) our loved ones at Christmas?



Travel chaos as 18m hit the roads for Christmas getaway - and airports face strike action

Britain is in danger of grinding to a halt as severe traffic jams, railway closures and airport strikes threaten to scupper the Christmas getaway.

The great getaway begins today, with 18million taking to the roads as they prepare to spend Christmas with loved ones. However it is expected to lead to heavy congestion.

Railway engineering work over the next ten days will force the closure of two of the country's major lines.

Hey! I think I went to that school

Photobucket

It could be worse



we could live in a country where this young man is bound to become Prime Minister in the near future.

Canada: it just parodies itself.

Did you know that "Toronto is the most multicultural city in the world"? And that Justin thinks that's a good thing?

He's also "passionate about the environment".

But wait, there's more:

While Quebec is being torn by its public hearings on the "reasonable accommodation" of immigrants, he said mere "tolerance" isn't enough any more. "We need to say, `I accept, I respect, I open my arms and my heart to you and I know that together, diversity is our greatest strength.'"
Actually, it clearly isn't and never will be. But what can you say? He's a liberal. All they can do is spout the very hottest ideas from 20 years ago, over and over again.

What. A. Dimwit. My resume is more impressive than this guy's.

And he may just become Prime Minister someday.

Because Canadians really are that shallow.


I sent a note to Kathy saying that on the long and growing list of things I am going to do when put in charge of everything is start re-education camps and among the first in line to go to them will be anyone who said in the public press that he is "passionate about the environment."

Conditions in the camp will be...

primitive.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

You Didn't Hear it Here First

"Pretty soon if this keeps up, at the current rate of Price Family Growth, at least one in three US citizens will be a Price," an anti-Price advocacy group told HilaryNews.com.

"It's a demographic disaster waiting to happen," said a spokesman for SGMTTC (Stop the Growth of Mad Traditional Catholics).

Thoughtcrime of the day: Things were better when Britannia ruled the waves.

When all those bitter little leftists gripe about the US being the world's policeman, what they frequently seem to forget is that the world really needs one. There needs to be someone out there telling the savages, no, it's not OK to kill, rape and steal, enslave whole nations and generally be insufferable bullies.

What I recall from my time in the hippie world was that, as children, the kids who liked to bully and menace everyone, not the teachers, were really the ones who ruled the roost. The weird theories that ruled our dumb hippie parents' and teachers' brains asserted the glowing goodness of all mankind if only he were freed of the constraints of rules, laws and religious prohibitions.

The kids weren't dumb at all, however, and knew this meant that rule-by-fists had come in. Think about it. If, as the "progressives" lefties, hippies and socialist do-gooders believe, we could create a utopia on earth when everyone is just allowed to do his own thing all the time (as in my little social-experiment school in 1974) what is to stop half the world simply bullying the other half. Not everyone just wants to live in peacelovegroovy land and grow tomatoes. What quite a lot of people like best is being extremely unpleasant to everyone else, particularly everyone weaker than themselves.

In this country, we have seen close up what happens when the hippie theories take over the brains of the police. When the cops try to be the bullies' best buddies, they can't be police anymore. I remember quite well what sort of response I used to get from the "teachers" in the hippie Free School, when I was sent as a delegate from the bullies' subjugated victims. "But that's just Charlie's way of expressing himself." Being a fairly peaceful child, and not yet trained in logic, I failed at that point to take up the nearest lead pipe and "express" my displeasure at the response.


Warren:

Britain had ruled the waves through the previous century, and taken upon herself the role of “world policeman.” On her watch over the high seas, piracy and the slave trade had been diminished, almost to nothing, for the first time in recorded history. And, a sea-borne international system of trade and communications had been secured. As the 20th century wore on, that torch, lighting the way to freedom and order, was passed from London to Washington.

Our kids today are taught in school, when they are taught any history at all, that Imperialism “was” an unmitigated evil. Alas, this is an unmitigated lie, and it is to European Imperialism that not only we, but formerly subject peoples, owe lives much longer and less painful than those of our ancestors. For in addition to free trade, and the rule of law at sea, the fleets carried with them ideas, and technology -- most significantly, certain principles of hygiene which, more even than the discoveries and techniques of modern medicine, contributed everywhere to longevity, prosperity, and health.

Who owns whom?

Monday, December 17, 2007

Thoughtcrime of the day: Racial segregation is a natural human trait

It just occurred to me while reading this bit of Kathy's on Michael Coren's bit for the Sun.

Another murder in a Canadian black community, this time the victim being 11-years old. And it took only moments for white liberal politicians to blame law-abiding handgun owners and, yes, the United States of America.

It's about how in every place where there are a lot of Jamaicans, there's a lot of them killing each other over drugs and prostituting their sisters. These are facts, but of course, in our times, truth is no excuse for political incorrectness.

But it's made me think of something else that's incorrect to say. But it's true isn't it?

In every place where a lot of different cultures mix, like Toronto, they don't.

Mix, I mean.

I've lived in "ethnically diverse" places all my life. Victoria, as I have said, had to ethnicities: Anglican and Chinese. Later we added White Hippie. And none of them mixed.

In Toronto, even in the Parkdale melting pot, the races and groups stubbornly refuse to melt. And immigration system that allows extended families, ultimately entire villages, to come in en masse, you are simply transplanting, repotting, entire cultural ecosystems and plopping them into existing communities who then flee the invasion of the aliens. Parkdale is a perfect example. The only white people who live here are the people that got dumped out when the government picked up the local loony bin and shook out the loose change.

But everywhere in Toronto, we have accepted (and often liked to have) neighbourhoods we call "ethnic". It's great for people who like to get authentic Tamil food, but not so good when we get everthing else that comes with Tamils...if ya get me.

It's not so bad with the Portugese or Italians or even the Chinese whose preferred forms of cultural criminality tend to involve less street warfare. It became a problem when we started thinking maybe we should have Pakistani, Somalian and Lebanese restaurants too.

But the multicultural argument seems to be fairly simple. Other cultures are interesting and good. We like everyone. So we should all live together.

But we don't. We naturally clump together into groups of people. We like to hang out with people who speak the same language, eat the same food, who don't look weird, who have the same conscious and semi-conscious cultural presuppositions. I'm sure the Philipina ladies find it incomprehensible that we white anglos sit in church like statues and flatly refuse to bring a helpful and useful crackly plastic shopping bag of doodads to play with. ("How on earth do they get through an hour long Mass without anything to fiddle with, or holy cards to pray along with, or snackies to give the kids? These anglos are weird!")

I have observered a funny rule on the bus. In close quarters, particularly in hot sticky weather, all the other people, that is, every other human being on the bus, is your mortal enemy. And for no other reason than that they are another human being who is taking up space. It is an offense that other people are on the same bus as you. That they dare to stand or sit next to you. If you are on the bus with a friend, he becomes an ally in this universal enmity. You look at each other and roll your eyes when yet another goddam human being gets on the bus. You and your friend are your tribe in a space that is eight feet wide by thirty feet long.

Take that theory and expand it into enclosed spaces the size of Toronto (or London or Birmingham or Manchester) neighbourhoods, and you suddenly see why multiculturalism has failed so miserably.

The theory is wrong.

We don't like everyone. We think we ought to like everyone, but we really only like people in our own tribe.

And that's the way it is supposed to be.

Norman, Coordinate!

(yesyes, I know. I'm recycling again...what do you want? I'm busy)

An Interesting Question:

I've often wondered what will happen in the lefty mind when their good friends the Islamonutters start murdering the gays, or at least, when they start killing them in numbers too large to keep on ignoring. Will there be an insoluble programming conflict that will make their little brains explode?

Hmmm probably not. In order to have programming conflicts of this kind, there has to be a capacity to grasp the logical principle of non-contradiction. They have to understand that there is a logical conflict. But we have seen that they cannot conceive of a logical conflict. There is no such thing in the leftist mind as two mutually exclusive proposals. We can, indeed we must, be both in the room and not in the room at the same time.

This explains their seemingly inexhaustible capacity for blaming the victim while at the same time assigning untouchable victim status to the perpetrator. We say, "but if everyone's a victim and no one's a perpetrator, how can anyone be a victim?"

But such nay-saying just irritates them. Of course everyone's a victim! Everyone, that is, except White male Christians and their dhimmi subject race wives.

The L. P. of C. simply doesn't trouble them.

I think I know what it's going to be...

"But Muslims are a privileged victim-class, it can't possibly be their fault that they're murdering members of a sibling privileged victim-class. It has to be because of George Bush. It's his fault. Yes, that's it! Islamophobia and George W. Bush have made them start hunting the poor homosexuals...and besides, it's a legitimate expression of their culture. Each to his own, ye know? Quick, more sensitivity training for police! before someone starts blaming the perpetrator instead of the victim!"

I'm confident they'll work it out according to their founding principles.

It's certainly true that their other useful-idiot subgroup un-blamable victim subculture, women, are being raped, maimed and murdered around the world in record numbers by our Muslim bretheren and we don't hear much about it except from the "neo-fascists" like the BNP.

And didn't we used to think the Jews were among the victim classes who could never do any wrong? Seems as if we've taken care of that little game too. They were probably just duping everyone anyway. You know what they're like.

Yes, I'm sure they will be able to figure it out.

and this from last summer...Living on the edge

Weather in Durham UK, August 1, 2007, local time is 2:20 am:
Partly Cloudy
9°C

forecast:

2 Aug: Cloudy, h:18°C l:13°C

3 Aug: Light rain, h:19°C l:13°C

Weather in Toronto, ON. Aug 1, local time 10:21 pm:
Clear (except for the smog)
30°C

forecast:
too horrible to contemplate.

Durham: Tweed skirts 365 days a year. Twinsets and stockings in July. Sleeping at night in August.

Toronto: Wallowing in sweat, smog, grit, and suffocating misery. No sleep at all between June and September.

* ~ * ~ *
Someone asked me today why I am moving to GB.

Ah, where to begin?

I have long had the theory that people ought not to live in the middle. The middle is bad. People are supposed to live on the edges, where there are ocean currents and nice wafty breezes to keep things pleasant and stable all year. In fact, we are supposed to live on islands. Think about it. In ancient times, the people who lived on the edges developed things like the wheel, pottery, mathematics, fluted marble architecture, rational philosophies and democracy. The more edges they had, the more good stuff.

Think about the things we like. Where did democracy come from? The place with the most edges of all, Greece. Where does the best tea in the world come from? Ceylon, place with mostly edges. Best beer in the world? Wedgewood china? Stilton cheese? Britain. Nothing but edges.

What comes from the places that are mostly middle with hardly any edges? Mongols. Huns. Yak butter tea. Communism.

What I think I like about Ynglonde is that the entire place is the edges. In a country with mostly edges, there will be peace in the end because that is the way people are supposed to live.

I have figured out another reason Canada is a stupid, awful pointless country. Waaaay too high a middle-to-edges ratio.

Buses cancelled, flights delayed as T.O. digs out

Heh.

Heh.

Heh.

Yeah. It was pretty cold here today too. I had to stick my hands in my pockets while was waiting for a train today...

Updated: 09:23:50 AM, Dec 17

Toronto is still reeling from the aftermath of a major storm that dumped about 26 cm of snow in the city. The morning commute is slow, school buses are cancelled and Pearson International Airport is still reporting dozens of delays.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Child of the Cold War, Me

I laugh because I just realized that every time there is a bit of dead air on BBC Radio 3, the first thought is, "Oh, hey. I wonder if someone has nuked London."

That early childhood training will never never leave you.

BTW: anyone old enough to remember them,

you know those "Emergency Response Test" things they used to have on TV? You know, "This is a test. This is only a test. If there was a real emergency, you would be given instructions..."

Then that long beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep.

then, "This has been a test of the emergency response system..."

you may now return to your regularly scheduled Saturday morning cartoons.

Was I the only one to wonder, "If the emergency came when no one had the TV on, is there some master switch somewhere that would turn them all on so we would know something was happening? How would we know what to do if we didn't happen to have the TV on at the moment the Emergency Response System came on."

It was not until years later that I realized the whole thing was a scam. The "emergency" was nuclear war, and with or without your TV telling you to put a paper bag over your head, there wasn't going to be a lot of point anyway.

I'd be interested to see a study done on people who were raised with the 15 Minute Spectre. You know the one where we were all told that any given 15 minute period could easily be our last. I have often wondered if it resulted in the "slacker" phenomenon where people my age, raised by hippies, simply made no plans for their lives because we all thought there wasn't any point.

I've probably written about this before.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

What to do with a dozen inedible crumpets

Anyone got a recipe for bread pudding?

Warning: Do not buy


Sainsbury's store brand crumpets.

Awful. Chewy, rubbery, tasteless.

Worst crumpet experience of my life.

(I trusted you, Jamie!)

...while at the same time, this country of religious experts

can't name the "little town" where Jesus was born.

Can we just turn the clock back now please?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

New Survey Finds 60% of British Public Dumb as Bricks

and will believe anything at all that the BBC tells them:

"Islam is fundamentally
a religion of peace but
fanatics have
interpreted it in a
violent way."

Men:63%
Women: 58%

Sign

I am a Canadian,
a free Canadian,
Free to speak without fear,
Free to worship God in my own way,
Free to stand for what I think right,
Free to oppose what I believe wrong,
Free to choose those who shall govern my country.
This heritage of freedom,
I pledge to uphold,
For myself and all mankind.

I can think of one very good reason to be in favour of the death penalty

the EU doesn't like it.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Sign

A Proposed Petition…

To: The Parliaments of Canada and all Provinces and Territories

A Free Dominion

We, the undersigned Canadians, declare our firm and unequivocal support for free speech. We categorically reject any effort on the part of the government or any of its organs to limit free expression of opinion on any issue, except where there is a clear communication to do physical harm to another person or where there is a question of defamation.We affirm that controversial opinions are a constituent part of a healthy and vibrant democracy, and that to silence any opinion, however seemingly offensive to any member of the public, is harmful to a free and open society. We believe that Canadians themselves, and not unelected quasi-judicial bodies, will decide which ideas are advanced and which ideas are rejected in forming the values and laws of our country. We believe that government should not intrude in this dialogue between Canadians and among Canadians.We believe that free speech should not be fined or taxed because it does not meet the requirements of government bureaucracies. We believe that Canadians should not live under the yoke of intimidation and threats when they seek to speak their minds on the issues of vital importance to the future and security of our nation.

We believe that every Canadian is entitled to due process under the law if a complaint is lodged against him or her. We believe that truth is a defense against any and all allegations. We believe that without the acknowledgement of the truth, there can be no justice or peace in Canada.

We consider many complaints launched in so-called human rights tribunals to be merely political tools to shut down dissent and uphold politically correct thought and opinion. In particular, we note the inordinate number of successful cases brought against Christians for their moral beliefs.

We believe that continual support for the suppression of free speech by these commissions will have far-reaching and destructive consequences for freedom of speech for all Canadians, irrespective of their political or religious views.

Therefore, we, the undersigned, call for the immediate suspension of all human rights commissions in Canada until a full and impartial review is conducted to ensure that Canadians’ fundamental right to freedom of speech is preserved.

The Great Steyn

...peace be upon him.

A free Dominion
Steynposts
Sunday, 09 December 2007
David Warren gets to the nub of it in today's Ottawa Citizen:

For more than twenty years, in this column and elsewhere, I have been writing against the human rights commissions, which have quasi-legal powers that should be offensive to the citizens of any free country. They are kangaroo courts, in which the defendant's right to due process is withdrawn. They reach judgements on the basis of no fixed law. Moreover, “the process is the punishment” in these star chambers -- for simply by agreeing to hear a case, they tie up the defendant in bureaucracy and paperwork, and bleed him for the cost of lawyers, while the person who brings the complaint, however frivolous, stands to lose nothing.

My hope is that this case against Mark Steyn and Maclean's will be fruitful. It will be, if it inspires enough people -- especially journalists, of all political persuasions -- to express outrage at what has been done; and inspires Canada's free citizens into the necessary political action to put an end to the human rights commissions themselves.

Speaking of which:

To: The Parliaments of Canada and all Provinces and Territories

A Free Dominion

We, the undersigned Canadians, declare our firm and unequivocal support for free speech. We categorically reject any effort on the part of the government or any of its organs to limit free expression of opinion...

From deep in the wreckage of Jim Henley's shattered blog post, Kathy Shaidle uncovers a comment worth preserving:

I am sick and tired of white liberals apologizing for the subhuman filth that has degraded my beautiful religion. The Islam that I practice stresses self-discipline and tolerance for one’s neighbors. I have fought the Wahhabi scum in both Afghanistan and Iraq and will be going back to Iraq soon to finish the job. I personally find it pathetic to find that I am fighting in Iraq to give Iraqis a right to free speech, while Canada seeks to chill legitimate political discourse.

It's hard to expect "moderate Muslims" to speak out when the broader "moderate" community sounds like Jim Henley.


The plaintiffs respond
Steynposts
Saturday, 08 December 2007
Muneeza Sheikh, Naseem Mithoowani, Khurrum Awan, Daniel Simard and Ali Ahmed, the law students who claim their "human rights" have been breached by Maclean's have a letter in today's Globe & Mail:

Margaret Wente says law students like us should be concerned about free speech (So Who's Fuelling The Prejudice? - Dec. 6). She's right! Which is why when Maclean's published the Mark Steyn article The Future Belongs to Islam last year, we met its editors and asked that they publish a response to its Islamophobic content from a mutually acceptable author, from inside or outside the Muslim community. The intention was to engage Mr. Steyn about his views on Muslims.

Maclean's said it would rather go bankrupt than publish any response - hence, our human-rights complaints. The issue is whether minority communities have the right to be part of the free speech that directly relates to them and not to be excluded. Our research indicates Maclean's published 18 articles with similar Islamophobic content between January of 2005 and July of 2007. How many articles have been published in response by mainstream Muslim organizations? None.

The irony is, if we had responded to the Steyn article by throwing rocks at the offices of Maclean's, we would have heard: If only Muslims would use the avenues available in a free and democratic society to engage in civilized debate. When we do, Canada's largest newsmagazine says it would rather go bankrupt and right-wing journalists wail about law students asserting their rights as citizens of a free and democratic society.

The publisher and editor-in-chief of Maclean's is Ken Whyte. His version of events is a little different:

The student lawyers in question came to us five months after the story ran. They asked for an opportunity to respond. We said that we had already run many responses to the article in our letters section, but that we would consider a reasonable request. They wanted a five-page article, written by an author of their choice, to run without any editing by us, except for spelling and grammar. They also wanted to place their response on the cover and to art direct it themselves.We told them we didn't consider that a reasonable request for response. When they insisted, I told them I would rather go bankrupt than let somebody from outside of our operations dictate the content of the magazine. I still feel that way.

Why did the "victims" wait five months before demanding a right of reply? By that time, Maclean's had already published 27 responses to the story - more than on any other Maclean's cover story.


A sporting offer
Steynposts
Friday, 07 December 2007
Ali Eteraz asks whether you can be "pro-Muslim and also pro-speech", and then makes an offer to the Canadian Islamic Congress:

Why don’t they just go publish their rebuttal elsewhere? In fact, if they are willing to drop their Human Rights complaint I will help them get published in The Guardian.


"Toothless Canada borrows crescent fangs"
Steynposts
Friday, 07 December 2007
Abe Greenwald thinks Maclean's and I are going to have our work cut out winning in British Columbia. This point struck a chord:

This is from “The Future Belongs to Islam”:

In a few years, as millions of Muslim teenagers are entering their voting booths, some European countries will not be living formally under sharia, but -- as much as parts of Nigeria, they will have reached an accommodation with their radicalized Islamic compatriots, who like many intolerant types are expert at exploiting the "tolerance" of pluralist societies.

So, is that “flagrant Islamophobia” or a tragically prescient summation of the predicament in which Steyn now finds himself (sooner than “in a few years” I may add)? In fact, this case is more than a potential misstep for Canadian lawmakers; it’s also an example of “tolerant” Europe’s ability to team up with “tolerant” Canada and “tolerantly” force Canadians to be more “tolerant.”

HRC's

The Canadian Human Rights Commissions were established in 1978 to address so-called human right violations against Canadians who would otherwise not be able to address their grievances in a court of law. They are, essentially, extra-judicial courts that are not obliged to follow legal procedures or govern their decisions according to any written laws. They are, in short, a law unto themselves.

The Tribunals are empowered to suspend the laws protecting citizens, ignore due process and the rules of evidence. They are adjudicated by non-elected lay people with no legal experience, chosen according to an unaccountable process in which insiders recommend their friends from various activist organisations on the extreme left.

A person denounced to the HRC must pay for the legal costs of his defence whereas the person making the complaint has his expenses paid by the state. If the "defendant" is found guilty, he must pay the costs of the entire process. The Tribunal may impose fines and "re-education" and if the defendant wants to appeal, again, he must shoulder the costs himself.

It is time to put a stop to it. (Before other countries get the same ideas.)

Click here:

Jackbooting Us



Sunday Spectator,
Ottawa Citizen
December 9, 2007

Suing for silence
The right to free expression of opinion and belief -- though constrained in its extremes during wartime -- is not something that can be negotiated in a free country. For it is the most fundamental right -- the queen bee in the hive, as it were. Every other freedom depends on this freedom. Take it away, and we no longer have a free country.

A misunderstanding about this is at the root of much conflict between East and West. When cartoonists were invited by a Danish provincial newspaper to present their graphic notions of the Prophet Mohammad, there were riots right across the Muslim world. Danish, or what were believed to be Danish, targets were struck. (The right to riot, with the attendant rights to assault, vandalism, pillage, arson and so forth, are not among our fundamental rights.) Boycotts were placed on Danish products, and diplomats from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and other Muslim countries pressured both the Danish government and the European Union of which it is a member, to punish the cartoonists. They demanded new legislation across Europe that would criminalize any future blasphemy against Islam.

The Danes, and the few allies who would stand with them in the heat, found themselves hopelessly explaining that in Denmark the government does not tell journalists what to write, or cartoonists what to draw. It is not in the power of a government to do that -- the courts are there to prevent a government from trying -- and the system can't be changed without overthrowing everything. You might not like what is expressed -- and you have the freedom to express your revulsion, even ignorantly -- but you have, and ought to have, no power to silence the people with whom you disagree.

This is an idea quite incomprehensible in Saudi Arabia, and nearly incomprehensible in Egypt. Their representatives were sincerely outraged by the failure of the Danish government to “take decisive action.” In their own countries, decisive action would have been taken.

We, in the West, do not legislate for the Dar al-Islam (the Muslim realm). On the contrary, we endure the fallout from countries in which, because the right to free speech is not secure, opposition to authority must be expressed through violence.

I make this hard point because it is necessary to understand. “Freedom of expression” did not develop in the West from purely idealistic motives. Nor is it necessarily a pretty thing. Like so much in civil society, we put up with it because the alternative is worse, and we'd rather cope with free speech, than with the free intimidation that results from its suppression.

And I make this point in light of the case that has been brought against Mark Steyn and Maclean's magazine, before Human Rights Commissions for Canada, British Columbia, and Ontario, by the Canadian Islamic Congress, led by Mohamed Elmasry. The first two commissions have already agreed to hear the case, and thus rule on whether Mark Steyn had the right to express the opinions and beliefs in his bestselling book, America Alone, and specifically in the excerpt entitled, “The Future Belongs to Islam,” which ran in Maclean's last year. According to the complaint, by expressing his opinions and beliefs, Mark Steyn “subjects Canadian Muslims to hatred and Islamophobia.”

That not all Muslims agree, has been made clear by members of the Muslim Canadian Congress, who have entered the fray in defence of Steyn and Maclean's. But that is a tactical side issue.

For more than twenty years, in this column and elsewhere, I have been writing against the human rights commissions, which have quasi-legal powers that should be offensive to the citizens of any free country. They are kangaroo courts, in which the defendant's right to due process is withdrawn. They reach judgements on the basis of no fixed law. Moreover, “the process is the punishment” in these star chambers -- for simply by agreeing to hear a case, they tie up the defendant in bureaucracy and paperwork, and bleed him for the cost of lawyers, while the person who brings the complaint, however frivolous, stands to lose nothing.

My hope is that this case against Mark Steyn and Maclean's will be fruitful. It will be, if it inspires enough people -- especially journalists, of all political persuasions -- to express outrage at what has been done; and inspires Canada's free citizens into the necessary political action to put an end to the human rights commissions themselves. The worst possible result, is if the case fails to produce this response.


David Warren
© Ottawa Citizen

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Christmas wish list

Although, I can't really say confidently that I've been particularly good.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Thoughtcrime of the Day

"Diversity" is just another bull___t word for "socialism".

The NHS

has just sent me a kind note inviting me in for FREE screening for sexually transmitted diseases.

Very thoughtful of them.

WHAT an interesting country this is!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

This address is UNLICENSED

"Your details are being passed to our enforcement officers."

Want to see the letter to the TV Licensing people?

Dear Television Licensing People,

Thank you for your very unpleasant threatening letter regarding the unlicensed status of this address. It was one of the first pieces of mail I received at my new home. In answer to your intolerably rude demands for money, threats and abuse, I thought of many possible replies, as you may imagine. But life is short so the simple truth must suffice: I will not now, nor will I ever purchase either a television license or a television.

The primary reason for this is that I have observed that the BBC is an evil organisation bent, apparently, on the sole aim of demolishing British culture, abolishing Christianity and degrading and bestialising the formerly noble and stout-hearted British people. This is an end for which I refuse to pay.

Secondarily, television in general is a soul-killing menace that turns a person into a docile, mindlessly consumerist puppet of the state, none of which I wish to become.

Thank you also for threatening to send the police 'round to harrass me, call me a liar to my face and generally humiliate me in front of my new neighbours. I was told that this sort of thing happens to citizens of this country a lot after 10 years of Labour government. Please be assured that if this should happen I will be recording all conversations on my digital voice recorder and making complaints of harrassment to the Members of Parliament and the press of my acquaintance.

I pray that this country returns soon to a modicum of its former stalwart Christian sanity and remain,

yours most sincerely,

H...

Abolish Christmas

Please! Before it's too late!

(Where's that National Secular Society when you need them?)

The Nativity as an asylum seekers' tale

Reindeer Ralph - the new Nativity : The traditional nativity play is on the wane, suggests a survey.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

The Chippy



Yet another English institution I recall fondly from childhood, and which I'm happy to say I lived with a lot in Victoria, BC, that little outpost of Ye Oldie Englandie, is the chippy. The Fish n' Chip shop.

Usually without seating or the slightest pretentions to "frills" and about the last place in the world you'd find anything resembling a "latte" or any kind of pretentious $5 coffee, the chippy probably keeps more British people alive than the NHS ever dreamed.

Went to one of the ones in Whitchurch today. Got me a slab of battered fish and a stick of crispy battered mushrooms, with about half a bottle of brown vinegar, for about 3 quid.

It was great.

And as soon as All Good Things are restored, and 'Elf n' Safety's goons are suitably accommodated at Her Majesty's Pleasure, I'm sure we can get rid of the styrofoam boxes and go back to wrapping them in newspaper, as God intended.

Glad we don't have one in the village or it would not be long before I no longer fit into my tweed church-going jackets.

Last notes

The hidden treasures of Cheshire country life; attended a concert in a tiny parish church in Whitegate the other night and was treated to the full choir and five-piece viol group doing music of the early 17th century for Advent.

H.L. Hassler (1564-162,) Peter Philips (1560-1626) and others, offered by the Renaissance Music Group, Dir. Morris Davies and Chester Viols, Dir. Peter Syrus.

It was poorly attended because they didn't advertise it very well, but, all the more for us eh?

And all in a very lovely English Gothic church, half timbered and all Gothic-arched.

Too bad you don't live in the middle of nowhere!


To get an idea:
Listen to Jordi Savall

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

I'm right there with the shotgun...

Thoughts on the Prospect of a Sixties Revival
Written for Rolling Stone During the Twentieth Anniversary of the Summer of Love
Oh, God. The Sixties are coming back. Well I've got a 12-gauge double-barreled duck gun chambered for three-inch Magnum shells. And -- speaking strictly for this retired hippie and former pinko beatnik -- if the Sixties head my way, they won't get past the porch steps. They will be history. Which, for chrissakes, is what they're supposed to be....

I've thought about this. I'm pretty sure, during the entire 1960s, I never once linked a subject to a predicate with a verb to create a sentence that meant anything. No wonder we were so interested in talking to dolphins. We sure couldn't talk to each other...

Because you remember what the terrible Sixties led to. That's right. They led to the loathsome, disgusting, repellent Seventies, which led to the unbelievably horrid, vicious, brutal swinish now.

Well, I'm a centrist...

who knew?


To the left of Mrs. Thatcher and far to her south, as well as the south, (on the "Libertarian/Authoritarian") axis of both Hitler and Stalin.

That's comforting, isn't it?

You try it; you might be surprised.

Political Compass for Hilary Jane Margaret White

Economic Left/Right: 0.38
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: 2.62

Traditionally, political worldviews have been categorised as 'left' or 'right', according to the weight they give to various values. The left-right line was established for the French National Assembly of 1789, and has become simplistic for today's complex political landscape. For example, who are the 'conservatives' in today's Russia? Are they the unreconstructed Stalinists, or the reformers who have adopted the right-wing views of conservatives like Margaret Thatcher ?

If we recognise that this is essentially an economic line it's fine, as far as it goes. We can show, for example, Stalin, Mao Tse Tung and Pol Pot, with their commitment to a totally controlled economy, on the hard left. Socialists like Mahatma Gandhi and Robert Mugabe would occupy a less extreme leftist position. Margaret Thatcher would be well over to the right, but further right still would be someone like that ultimate free marketeer, General Pinochet.

That deals with economics, but the social dimension is also important in politics. That's the one that the mere left-right scale doesn't adequately address. So we've added a perpendicular scale, ranging in positions from extreme authoritarian to extreme libertarian.

Both an economic dimension and a social dimension are important factors for a proper political analysis. By adding the social dimension you can show that Stalin was an authoritarian leftist (ie the state is more important than the individual) and that Gandhi, believing in the supreme value of each individual, is a liberal leftist. While the former involves state-imposed arbitary collectivism in the extreme top left, on the extreme bottom left is voluntary collectivism at regional level, with no state involved. Hundreds of such anarchist communities exisited in Spain during the civil war period You can also put Pinochet, who was prepared to sanction mass killing for the sake of the free market, on the far right as well as in a hardcore authoritarian position. On the non-socialist side you can distinguish someone like Milton Friedman, who is anti-state for fiscal rather than social reasons, from Hitler, who wanted to make the state stronger, even if he wiped out half of humanity in the process. The chart also makes clear that, despite popular perceptions, the opposite of fascism is not communism but anarchism (ie liberal socialism), and that the opposite of communism ( i.e. an entirely state-planned economy) is neo-liberalism (i.e. extreme deregulated economy).

The usual understanding of anarchism as a left wing ideology does not take into account the neo-liberal "anarchism" championed by the likes of Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman and America's Libertarian Party, which couples law of the jungle right-wing economics with liberal positions on most social issues. Often their libertarian impulses stop short of opposition to strong law and order positions, and are more economic in substance (ie no taxes) so they are not as extremely libertarian as they are extremely right wing. On the other hand, the classical libertarian collectivism of anarcho-syndicalism ( libertarian socialism) belongs in the bottom left hand corner.

Separating the economic and social dimensions of political thought demolishes the myth that authoritarianism is necessarily "right wing", with the examples of Robert Mugabe, Pol Pot and Stalin. Similarly Hitler, on an economic scale, was not an extreme right-winger. His economic policies were broadly Keynesian, and to the left of some of today's Labour parties. If you could get Hitler and Stalin to sit down together and avoid economics, the two diehard authoritarians would find plenty of common ground.

A reminder to Canadians visiting Britain

when someone asks you at nine o'clock in the morning if you would like a "brew", he is not offering you a beer.

Say, "yes please; milk, one sugar".

It reminds me of the ravenous bugblatter beast

of Traal.

A beast so minbogglingly stupid that it thought if you can't see it, it can't see you.

Daft as a brush.

Don't tell me about the press...

The English the English, the English are best

I wouldn't give tuppence for all of the rest.

An Englishman has all the qualities of a poker...

except for the occasional warmth.

Monday, December 03, 2007

(hint: its because

if we keep doing Exmas the way we do, we're all going to die.)

In the meantime, I'll let you read

an essay written by C. S. Lewis entitled

"Xmas and Christmas: A Lost Chapter from Herodotus."

And beyond this there lies in the ocean, turned towards the west and north, the island of Niatirb which Hecataeus indeed declares to be the same size and shape as Sicily, but it is larger, though in calling it triangular a man would not miss the mark. It is densely inhabited by men who wear clothes not very different from the other barbarians who occupy the north western parts of Europe though they do not agree with them in language. These islanders, surpassing all the men of whom we know in patience and endurance, use the following customs.

In the middle of winter when fogs and rains most abound they have a great festival which they call Exmas and for fifty days they prepare for it in the fashion I shall describe. First of all, every citizen is obliged to send to each of his friends and relations a square piece of hard paper stamped with a picture, which in their speech is called an Exmas-card. But the pictures represent birds sitting on branches, or trees with a dark green prickly leaf, or else men in such garments as the Niatirbians believe that their ancestors wore two hundred years ago riding in coaches such as their ancestors used, or houses with snow on their roofs. And the Niatirbians are unwilling to say what these pictures have to do with the festival; guarding (as I suppose) some sacred mystery. And because all men must send these cards the marketplace is filled with the crowd of those buying them, so that there is great labour and weariness.

But having bought as many as they suppose to be sufficient, they return to their houses and find there the like cards which others have sent to them. And when they find cards from any to whom they also have sent cards, they throw them away and give thanks to the gods that this labour at least is over for another year. But when they find cards from any to whom they have not sent, then they beat their breasts and wail and utter curses against the sender; and, having sufficiently lamented their misfortune, they put on their boots again and go out into the fog and rain and buy a card for him also. And let this account suffice about Exmas-cards.

They also send gifts to one another, suffering the same things about the gifts as about the cards, or even worse. For every citizen has to guess the value of the gift which every friend will send to him so that he may send one of equal value, whether he can afford it or not. And they buy as gifts for one another such things as no man ever bought for himself. For the sellers, understanding the custom, put forth all kinds of trumpery, and whatever, being useless and ridiculous, they have been unable to sell throughout the year they now sell as an Exmas gift. And though the Niatirbians profess themselves to lack sufficient necessary things, such as metal, leather, wood and paper, yet an incredible quantity of these things is wasted every year, being made into the gifts.

But during these fifty days the oldest, poorest, and most miserable of the citizens put on false beards and red robes and walk about the market-place; being disguised (in my opinion) as Cronos. And the sellers of gifts no less than the purchaser's become pale and weary, because of the crowds and the fog, so that any man who came into a Niatirbian city at this season would think some great public calamity had fallen on Niatirb. This fifty days of preparation is called in their barbarian speech the Exmas Rush.

But when the day of the festival comes, then most of the citizens, being exhausted with the Rush, lie in bed till noon. But in the evening they eat five times as much supper as on other days and, crowning themselves with crowns of paper, they become intoxicated. And on the day after Exmas they are very grave, being internally disordered by the supper and the drinking and reckoning how much they have spent on gifts and on the wine. For wine is so dear among the Niatirbians that a man must swallow the worth of a talent before he is well intoxicated.

Such, then, are their customs about the Exmas. But the few among the Niatirbians have also a festival, separate and to themselves, called Crissmas, which is on the same day as Exmas. And those who keep Crissmas, doing the opposite to the majority of the Niatirbians, rise early on that day with shining faces and go before sunrise to certain temples where they partake of a sacred feast. And in most of the temples they set out images of a fair woman with a new-born Child on her knees and certain animals and shepherds adoring the Child. (The reason of these images is given in a certain sacred story which I know but do not repeat.)

But I myself conversed with a priest in one of these temples and asked him why they kept Crissmas on the same day as Exmas; for it appeared to me inconvenient. But the priest replied, "It is not lawful, O stranger, for us to change the date of Chrissmas, but would that Zeus would put it into the minds of the Niatirbians to keep Exmas at some other time or not to keep it at all. For Exmas and the Rush distract the minds even of the few from sacred things. And we indeed are glad that men should make merry at Crissmas; but in Exmas there is no merriment left." And when I asked him why they endured the Rush, he replied, "It is, O Stranger, a racket"; using (as I suppose) the words of some oracle and speaking unintelligibly to me (for a racket is an instrument which the barbarians use in a game called tennis).

But what Hecataeus says, that Exmas and Crissmas are the same, is not credible. For first, the pictures which are stamped on the Exmas-cards have nothing to do with the sacred story which the priests tell about Crissmas. And secondly, the most part of the Niatirbians, not believing the religion of the few, nevertheless send the gifts and cards and participate in the Rush and drink, wearing paper caps. But it is not likely that men, even being barbarians, should suffer so many and great things in honour of a god they do not believe in. And now, enough about Niatirb.

Grinch Chronicles

Remind me to tell y'all later why I think Christmas ought to be banned.

No, I mean really really banned. I don't just mean the glittery tinsely Christmas stuff, but the actual religious holiday.

Banned outright. No more carols. No more Christmas TV specials. No services in churches.

And definitely no bell-ringing.

Especially in Britain.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

The Indispensable Grammarian

A faithful reader provides the secret:


Rule
-ible -able
If the root is not a complete word, add -ible.

aud + ible = audible
Examples:

visible
horrible
terrible
possible
edible
eligible
incredible
permissible


If the root is a complete word, add -able.

accept + able = acceptable
Examples:

fashionable
laughable
suitable
dependable
comfortable
If the root is a complete word ending in -e, drop the final -e and add -able.

excuse - e+ able = excusable
Examples:

advisable
desirable
valuable
debatable


And, this being English, we must note that there are exceptions:

contemptible
digestible
flexible
responsible
irritable
inevitable


The joy this gave me, to know the rule at last: proof, as if more were needed, that I'm peculiar and needed long ago to get a real life.

Whether it is OK to recyle old posts

It would seem that I've been doing a lot of Big Posts lately.

Objection 1: Some will say, "Hey, you're just recycling old posts from the Secret Blog!"

On the contrary, "It is impossible for blogdom's fullness to consist in a wealth of new or original thinking. For blogging wealth is twofold, as the Philosopher says, and consists of a judicious admixture of new stuff and old. New posts are that which serve blogdom as a remedy for its insatiable desire for novelty, while old stuff is that which feeds the mind in the manner of a rumination on and development of Bigger Things, and not for the mere entertainment of the mind's passing fancy".

I answer that: it's my blog and I'll break the rules when I want. And hath not Uncle Jack said that new or orignal thinking is for charlatans, snake oil salesmen and Labour politicians?

Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.



(With apologies to St. Thomas.)

Dr. Johnson on the Blogging Phenomenon


He didn't think much of it.

* ~ * ~ *
Among those whose reputation is exhausted in a short time by its own luxuriance, are the writers who take advantage of present incidents or characters which strongly interest the passions, and engage universal attention. It is not difficult to obtain readers, when we discuss a question which every one is desirous to understand, which is debated in every assembly, and has divided the nation into parties; or when we diplay the faults or vitues of him whose public conduct has made almost every man his enemy or his friend. To the quick circulation of such productions all the motives of interest and vanity concur; the disputant enlarges his knowledge, the zealot animates his passion, and every man is desirous to inform himself concerning affairs so vehemently agitated and variously represented.
...

Whoever has, at any time, taken occasion to mention him with praise or blame, whoever happens to love or hate any of his adherents, as he wishes to confirm his opinion, and to strengthen his party, will diligently peruse every paper from which he can hope for sentiments like his own...He that shall peruse political pamphlets of any past reign, will wonder why they were so eagerly read, or so loudly praised...

Many of the performances which had power to inflame factions, and fill a kingdom with confusion, have now very little effect upon a frigid critick...

In proportion, as those who write on temporary subjects, are exalted above their merit at first, they are afterwards depressed below it; nor can the brightest elegance of diction or most artful subtilty of reasoning, hope for much esteem from those whose regard is no longer quickened by curiosity or pride.

Saving the World With Classical Grammar


Some time ago, I tried an experiment and started a blog dedicated to issues of language, grammar and usage called The Incorruptible Grammarian. It was a good idea, I think, but the timing was bad for me. It fizzled as I became distracted with a personal disaster, as well as the press of politics and other worries. The end of the world and all that.

But I revisited it this morning and see that I may have been on to something.
Nietzsche said, "I am afraid we are not rid of God because we still have faith in grammar." If only Nietzsche had lived long enough to see the 1970's and the new education he would have rejoiced at the final triumph of the human will over God.

Section 125 of The Joyous Science (1882), "The Madman." (The madman is actually Nietzsche himself)

Have you not heard of that madman who lit a lantern in the bright morning hours, ran to the market place, and cried incessantly: "I seek God! I seek God!"...

The madman jumped into their midst and pierced them with his eyes. "Whither is God?" he cried; "I will tell you. We have killed him—you and I. All of us are his murderers. But how did we do this? How could we drink up the sea? Who gave us the sponge to wipe away the entire horizon? What were we doing when we unchained the earth from its sun? Whither is it moving now? Whither are we moving? Away from all suns?"

The Restoration is not only a matter of politics, or even education qua education. It is an essential re-construction of ruined thought. Imagine Western Civilization not as a set of buildings, or precious cultural artifacts like the Mass (if we may be somewhat impersonal and irreligious for a moment), or the Divine Office, or legally indissoluble natural marriage, or even any philosophical school. Imagine it is a larger thing than that; it is a framework for our thought, our creative efforts. Imagine it is the structure that makes something like Chartres or Salisbury Cathedral possible. The container for the idea of Chartres, without which no Chartres could be conceived.

Try to imagine this framework, for a moment, as a ruined castle that contains in its fabric, in the manner of its construction, a kind of key or code, that, if deciphered, will allow all the treasures of a dimly remembered quasi-legendary civilization to be brought back.

Now imagine that the people who live in the vicinity of the ruins are indeed the direct descendants of those who built it and they have in their cultural memory the means of deciphering the code. Their local language, their songs and stories about the life of their ancestors in and around the castle, are also part of the code. They know what the castle means.

Grammar is something that postmodernists hate (which is why it is very difficult to read their books). They fear its return because they know that you can use it to rebuild the castle.

Becoming a philologist in the traditional sense, then, is an act of subversion against the new regime, a means of preserving and rebuilding The Before. The revolutionaries knew what they were about with the abolition of grammar education. I caught the tail end of it by going to a Catholic parochial school in the mid-seventies. I was actually taught how to diagram sentences and I'm told that such things are now utterly extinct, even the memory of them is gone.

When I took a first year anthropology class...oo, these many long years ago, I was told that one of the main tasks of anthropologists was to find things that humans do and think that are universal. It's harder than you might think. Even things we think are really obvious like counting to ten on your fingers is not done by everyone in the world. There are people who go from one to five on one hand and then start counting other body parts and think we are terribly odd for moving onto the second set of five fingers. There are people who shake for 'yes' and nod for 'no'.

But grammar, the idea of having a set of linguistic rules governing the use of words to convey a meaning that everyone agrees upon, is one of those universals of culture. The idea that there are rules, that breaking the rules creates chaos and confusion, is universal...except for us. The Postmodern west has decided that this, along with everything else that helps us make sense of the universe, is too confining. That we must emancipate ourselves from grammar as we did from social mores. Grammar is oppression to the postmodern man.

The revolutionaries thought, "We cannot be free until we have killed God, the ultimate oppressor. To kill God, we must kill all order, all sense, all law governing thought." Grammar is the law of thought, the grammar of the West (Greek and Latin) will bring back the thought of the West which will make it possible for all the other things we love to be restored.