TONGUE TIED ARCHIVE
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December 31, 2005
OK to Abuse Christianity Still
Even the sight of a Christmas tree is suppposed to upset Muslims, according to Leftists. And they make great efforts to ensure that we don't upset people's religious sensibilities. So they no doubt will be manning (personing?) the barricades over this:"A punk-rock style, trendy tight fit and affordable price have made Cheap Monday jeans a hot commodity among young Swedes, but what has people talking is the brand's ungodly logo: a skull with a cross turned upside down on its forehead. The jeans' makers say it's more of a joke, but the logo's designer said there's a deeper message. "It is an active statement against Christianity," Bjorn Atldax told The Associated Press. "I'm not a Satanist myself, but I have a great dislike for organized religion."
"One cannot just keep quiet about this," said the Rev. Karl-Erik Nylund, vicar of St. Mary Magdalene Church in Stockholm. "This is a deliberate provocation (against Christians) and I object to that." Nylund complained that Swedish companies don't treat Christianity with the same respect that they afford other religions. "No one wants to provoke Jews or Muslims, but it's totally OK to provoke Christians," he said."
We all know how many Leftist protests there will be about it all don't we? Leftist hypocrisy and double standards never stop. I personally think that people should be free to wear what they want on their clothing but I also (even though I am an atheist) think that people should be free to make whatever reference to Christ and Christmas that they want. That sort of consistency and genuine principle is unknown to most of the Left, however. What it shows is that their only real goal is not to help but to hurt. In the name of tolerance they practice discrimination. They are themselves as intolerant as their Communist heroes.
A Political Quiz
The holiday season is a good time for something fun and lighthearted so I though I might direct readers to: "A Humorous Political Party Quiz to Test If You're an Archconservative, Leftwing Wacko, Antigovernment Libertine or a Commie Sympathizer". It's been around for a while but I am guessing that there will be a lot of readers here who have not seen it yet. You can find it here
December 30, 2005
Confederate War Hero Bad; Socialist Mexican Good
"Stonewall" Jackson has towns, counties, parks, rivers, creeks, lakes, forests and buildings named for him all across the southern US. But that is now bad. A press excerpt:"The debate comes down to this: Was Stonewall-Flanders Elementary School named for the legendary Confederate general Stonewall Jackson or for stone fences that adorned front yards in the neighborhood? Harlandale Independent School District trustees will consider the question as they decide whether to grant a former district administrator's request to rename the school after Cesar Chavez, the late social activist.... Calzoncit says Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson was a racist and the school should not bear his name"
Note that NOBODY is defending the naming of the school after Jackson. They are defending the name on the basis that it does NOT refer to Jackson. It seems to be universally accepted that nothing should be named after a racist. But almost everybody was racist before World War 2 (including that great fan of Aryans, Democrat President Woodrow Wilson) so should we celebrate none of our ancestors? Psychologists even tell us that we are ALL racists so should we just stop naming things after people?
Northern Ireland Shows the Way
(This post is outside the normal scope of this blog but I hope that we are all more relaxed over the holiday season and I think lots of readers here will be interested in it)
Northern Ireland: That's where Protestants and Catholics are always shooting one-another, Right? Maybe. But note this:"A United Nations report has labelled Scotland the most violent country in the developed world, with people three times more likely to be assaulted than in America. England and Wales recorded the second highest number of violent assaults while Northern Ireland recorded the fewest. The study, based on telephone interviews with victims of crime in 21 countries, found that more than 2,000 Scots were attacked every week, almost ten times the official police figures. They include non-sexual crimes of violence and serious assaults. Violent crime has doubled in Scotland over the past 20 years and levels, per head of population, are now comparable with cities such as Rio de Janeiro, Johannesburg and Tbilisi".
So what's going on? We know that Scotland lives under very draconian gun bans. What about Northern Ireland? Why is its crime-rate so LOW despite the religious tensions? Answer: Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK that is generally armed, or at least where you cannot assume that any given person is not armed. So it's that good old deterrent effect at work again. As in the USA, the more guns, the less crime.
December 29, 2005
A Brutal Asian Fraternity Kills a Member: So Race Card is Played
A press excerpt:"A Houston lawmaker is urging University of Texas officials to reconsider last week's decision to ban an Asian American-interest fraternity whose members were involved in hazing the night freshman member Phanta "Jack" Phoummarath drank himself to death. Rep. Hubert Vo wrote UT President Larry Faulkner last week that the university should consider alternative punishments such as probation, community service or alcohol abuse training for the members of Lambda Phi Epsilon, rather than canceling the registration of the entire group.
Group punishment, Vo said, is unfair and could send the wrong message to the Asian community by destroying an important social and support network for Asian students, many of whom are children of immigrants and first-generation college students. Vo said Tuesday his concern has nothing to do with race and that he doesn't expect Asians to get special treatment at UT.....
Brett has said members of Lambda Phi Epsilon, which was not affiliated with UT's Greek community, told university investigators that new members were expected to drink large amounts of liquor and were required to shave their heads when they were installed as active members.
But Vo, a Democrat who emigrated from Vietnam about 30 years ago, said UT's decision may discourage Asian students who need all the resources they can get while pursuing their education. "Cutting off a fraternity like this means cutting off the support network for the students," Vo said.
If this typical Democrat support for murderers has nothing to do with race, why mention it?
December 28, 2005
Christmas Card Update
On December 10th I put up an email from a company manager who sent out NRA Christmas cards to all his business contacts -- cards that actually mentioned Christmas. He has just sent me an update about what happened:"I also wanted to give you a short update on the item I sent you about the selection of Christmas cards I sent to my clients. These card were the ones I bought from the National Rifle Association. It appears that it was tempest in a teapot. I sent out 300 cards, and got not one single, solitary complaint. I actually did get one complaint, but it turns out that the customer was joking about being offended. As an aside, more people wished me a Merry Christmas that in years past. Possibly, I was just more aware of it this year after listening to Bill O'Reilley and John Gibson discuss the "War on Christmas." I also am an avid listener of some of the programs on National Public Radio, long viewed as a bastion of liberal thought. I heard quite a few Merry Christmases from them, also.
Bigotry Against Southerners
An interesting post from a blogger in the American South. Excerpt:"In recent online discussions I have been twice accused of being a racist when the person arguing with me found out I live in Houston Texas. There seems to be this bigoted stereotype that those of us in the southern United States are just a bunch of unenlightened inbred racist bastards. It was very unsettling to me to be accused of this living as I do in one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the USA, and one which has a very good record of race relations.
The blogger then presents statistics that show Texas as LESS racist than other places. Ignorance, thy name is Leftism.
December 27, 2005
Racism at Cornell
Psychologists at Cornell are making an effort to sell their dubious services to minority students there. Nothing wrong with that. Selling your services is very American. But how come you can target race -- which Leftists say does not exist (It's "socially constructed") -- as part of what you do? Note this excerpt:"Counselors at the Ivy League school hold group talks such as "The Joys and Challenges of Being Other Than Caucasian at Cornell" and have drop-in sessions at the international student center, the engineering school and other spots....
At Cornell, the new outreach includes multilingual sessions and culture-specific marketing. Cornell literature even promotes Frandsen-Pechenik as the school's "very own Latina psychologist."....
"Most psychologists I meet are not understanding of, say, being the first in your family to go to college and having the weight of the family on your shoulders," said Cisneros, a senior from Dallas.
"Anglo" students have problems too. Some "Anglo" students too are the first in their family to go to college. I was myself. So how about a talk on "The Joys and Challenges of Being Caucasian at Cornell"? And will Cornell be promoting its "very own Anglo-Saxon psychologists"? We know it's not going to happen but why not? Shouldn't all students be treated equally?
People like these Accuse Conservatives of Racism
I think I will let these press excerpts speak for themselves:"While Councilman Michael Ashford was being ushered away from a breakfast table by union boss Bill Lichtenwald, he heard Mr. Lichtenwald say to Councilman Frank Szollosi, "Why are you talking to those people?" Mr. Ashford, who is African-American, said he felt racially offended by the remark, which is further adding to the divide between A team and B-team Democrats".
And:"A high-ranking official within the Liberal Party of Canada resigned Monday after he made disparaging comments on his blog about NDP Leader Jack Layton and his wife, NDP candidate Olivia Chow. Mike Klander, executive vice-president of the federal Liberal party's Ontario wing, stepped down after photographs of Chow, the NDP candidate for the Toronto riding of Trinity-Spadina, and a chow chow dog were posted on his blog dated Dec. 9 under the heading "Separated at Birth.""
Photo of Ms Chow below:
December 26, 2005
Can Anyone help?
As I have mentioned before, I get a lot of email from readers of this blog who are in the military. I have just got an email that I think I should share in case anyone reading this can help:"The army here in Iraq has apparently blocked the whole 72.x.x.x domain, and that is where Townhall.com is located. Can you contact them and tell them they have fans (and financial contributors) in Iraq that cannot access their site? Maybe they can change their IP address, maybe they have an alternative address, or maybe they can contact someone and complain that their site is being blocked. By law, the army cannot block some sites and leave others accessible unless they have a really good reason.
I think it is pretty disgraceful when a mainstream conservative site like Townhall is blocked.
December 25, 2005
MERRY CHRISTMAS to all who come by here from your TT bloggers
Postings may be a bit light over the festive season
The "Non-existent" Attacks on Christmas
When people point out to Leftists how intolerant their attacks on Christmas are, what do they do? Increasingly they deny that such attacks happen! Denial is an old Freudian defence mechanism and Leftists have never been very comfortable with reality (which is why they are so keen on censoring it) so I cannot say that I am surprised by such a response but it sure must take some huge mental gymnastics to dismiss as unimportant or non-existent such examples as the four below (Taken from Deroy Murdock):
* In Manhasset, N.Y., Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman upbraided a Catholic priest who appeared at a Dec. 2 Christmas festival. "We're here to celebrate the holiday tree lighting," Kaiman said after Father Nick Zientarski offered a blessing. "This is not the place for a religious ceremony." Kaiman apologized after he unleashed a maelstrom.
* Centennial, Colo.'s Heritage Elementary School banned cookies shaped like Christmas symbols, candy canes bearing religious messages, and teacher and student references to seasonal gatherings as "Christmas" parties.
* A Memphis, Tenn., public library allowed a Nativity scene _ provided Jesus, Mary, and Joseph were excluded. (Manger, yes. Messiah, no.) Attorneys persuaded the library to reverse this decision.
* Much as "Uncle Joe" [Stalin] erased his enemies from photos of VIPs taken atop Lenin's Tomb, Stalinists at Ridgeway Elementary School in Dodgeville, Wis., airbrushed the lyrics to "Silent Night." Children in its "Winter Program" instead sang these bastardized words: "Cold in the night, no one in sight/winter winds whirl and bite/How I wish I were happy and warm/safe with my family, out of the storm."
December 24, 2005
Traditional Dress OK -- but not if it's Scottish
I am sure that Muslim garb would have been OK. And if the guy had accused people in Muslim garb of looking like clowns there would have been hell to pay
As I myself wear full Highland dress on occasions (See here) I was pretty disgusted to read this story. Every person with Scottish connections recognizes the kilt as a formal and dignified form of dress. Excerpt:"Nathan Warmack wanted to honor his heritage by wearing a Scottish kilt to his high school dance. Then a principal told him to change into a pair of pants. What began with a few yards of tartan has sparked an international debate about freedom, symbols and cultural dress. More than 1,600 people have signed an Internet petition seeking an apology for the high school senior....
And while they weren't trying to dress in kilts, a few boys were allowed to wear skirts to class at Franklin Community High School in Indiana in 1997, when a superintendent said different people express themselves in different ways....
After Nathan Warmack and his date posed for pictures, principal Rick McClard, who had not previously seen the kilt, told the student he had to go change. Warmack refused a few times and said the outfit was recognizing his heritage. Warmack alleges McClard told him: "Well, this is my dance, and I'm not going to have students coming into it looking like clowns."...
Several Scottish heritage organizations are angry, saying the kilt is a symbol of Scottish pride and considered formal dress. "To say the traditional Scottish dress makes you look like a clown is a direct insult to people of Scottish heritage and those who live in Scotland," said Tom Wilson, a Texas commissioner for the Clan Gunn Society of North America, a Scottish heritage organization.
We mentioned here yesterday the heartburn being caused in some quarters over the Dutch Santa Claus (Sinterklaas) -- the trouble being that Sinterklaas has a helper called "Black Pete". Black Pete carries a large bag with him into which he puts naughty children to teach them a lesson. This centuries-old joke is now of course seen as "offensive" among those who make a profession out of being offended. Anyway, I thought readers might like to see a picture of Sinterklaas and "Zwarte Piet" with his bag. The picture was taken in Australia on Sydney's most famous city beach -- Bondi. Santa Claus gets around, you know.
December 18, 2005
Incorrect to Photograph your own Children
I guess we are all pedophiles now, according to the loony below:"Parents have branded a headteacher Scrooge after she banned them from filming their own children. Barbara Williams has banned camcorders and cameras from Christmas concerts at Blaenllynfi Infants' School in Caerau....
Chairman of governors at Blaenllynfi, Rev Keith Andrews, said Mrs Williams had told him it was local authority policy. 'I support the policy because of child protection issues,' he said. 'If anybody gets photographs of children, they can be published anywhere.'
It's just a desperate attempt to appear "holier than thou".
A good comment from a reader: "This is scary. It is getting to the point that we cannot touch another in sympathy, hold a hand in comfort, give a hug of simple affection, and now take pictures of our children and grandchildren without some idiot thinking it will be used for pornography! It is not only ridiculous but a way of negatively controlling people so that there is no normal any more only distance and coldness. When are people going to realize there has never been nor ever will be perfect protection from evil in this world and that you cannot give up being a human being to try to avoid evil? It just doesn't work that way. Evil is evil and it will always find a way. Just the same as you can't prevent all accidents"
Nativity Scene Removed even in Holy Ireland
Press excerpt:"Christmas cheer at the country's biggest hospital has been replaced by outrage over a decision to remove a festive crib due to fears of offending non-Christians. No sooner had the crib at St James's Hospital in Dublin been erected than it became the latest victim of political correctness. Hospital bosses ordered its removal yesterday, leaving many staff very angry. The crib, which was donated to the hospital by a patient, was assembled in the hospital concourse in the centre of the huge hospital development".
Who on earth is a nativity scene going to offend in Holy Ireland? REMOVING it has certainly caused offence but that does not matter of course: Which shows that "avoiding offence" is just a pretext for the Left. UPSETTING ordinary people is the real aim.
December 17, 2005
Truth Forbidden in Australia
Australia's largest city, Sydney, has been suffering a long time from the aggressive and criminal behaviour of young Muslim men who are the children of Arabs who were allowed into Australia as refugees during the civil war in Lebanon. And the politicized police have been made to treat the offenders concerned with kid gloves. Last weekend, young Anglo Australians got sick of police inaction and held a rally to deal with the Muslims themselves. Under the influence of the hot weather and much beer, however, the rally turned into a huge riot that the police could barely restrain.
The riot did however wake the authorities up to the fact that they were going to have to deal with the Muslim problem themselves and, under the pretext of restraining "racism" among Anglo-Australians, new laws have been rushed through that enable better police control of aggressive gatherings. We will see this weekend what happens as a result. I have been monitoring the ethnic incidents daily on my Australian Politics blog.
As I mentioned, the authorities in Sydney blame everybody but the Muslims (sound familiar?) and various media figures have been caught in that net. Note the following quote about popular Sydney radio announcer Brian Wilshire :
"The career of veteran 2GB announcer Brian Wilshire is in limbo after he called Lebanese-Australians "inbreds" and questioned their intelligence on air. Wilshire, 61, was yesterday pulled off air and made to apologise for comments he made on Thursday night. Discussing Middle Eastern boys involved in violence he said: "Many of them have parents who are first cousins, whose parents were first cousins ... The result of this is inbreeding."
Note that there was no attempt to look into the truth or falsehood of what he said. That was apparently seen as irrelevant. If you want to express your support for Wilshire, he can probably be reached here: firstname.lastname@example.org
A Small Victory for Christmas Music
In Towson, near Baltimore, the local business association runs the town's Christmas celebrations ("The ceremony is sponsored by Baltimore County government and the Towson Business Association, which does most of the legwork"). And important in the celebrations are a local choir, a choir that has been there for many years to give voice on the big day when the Christmas tree is lit up and Santa arrives.
But this year the head of the business association, Susan Doordan, told the choir not to sing anything religious. But about half the songs the choir normally sings are in fact religious. So the choir rebelled. No songs at all for Towson this year, they said.
That got things rumbling. The head of the business association suddenly discovered that there was in fact no ban on religious songs and called the choir back and told them to sing whatever they liked.
The full story was here under the heading: "Tradition triumphs over political correctness at tree lighting" but has now been taken down and is now no longer available even in their archives. Why am I not surprised? The journalist who wrote the story was Loni Ingraham.
A Good Email
I get lots of emails both from readers of this blog and from readers of my other blogs. And I have often noted how the email address of the people who write to me ends in "mil" -- meaning that the writer is a member of the U.S. military. So no prizes for guessing that lots of military men greatly dislike political correctness.
I thought that for once I might however put up an excerpt from one of the emails I have received from military men:"I also wanted to tell you I enjoy the Tongue Tied web site. Keep up the good work. I also wanted to let you know I am a civilian contractor (retired Air Force) working in Iraq. The morale of both the troops and civilians here is really high. People take a lot of pride in serving their country and being part of history. I have a 21 year old son who is in the Army and is stationed in Baghdad. He just re-enlisted this week. I couldn't be prouder of him. I just wanted you to get a glimpse of things from my perspective".
Thank goodness for the internet! Without it all we would hear is the doom and gloom that the media never tire of shovelling at us.
December 14, 2005
Food, Nutrition and Calories
A little while ago I put up a post ridiculing an "expert" who said that food can be high in calories but have no nutritional value. The statement is absurd because the human body produces calories from food and if food is not nutrition what is?
A number of readers have however written to me who agree with the "expert" -- usually taking the trouble to tell me also how their own diet of fruit and nuts (or whatever) has benefited them.
So I think I may have been a bit unfair to the "expert". I suspect that in current American usage "nutrition" means "food that I approve of". Being a straight-talking Australian, that caught me by surprise.
December 11, 2005
Are Blondes Now Politically Incorrect?
First, a news excerpt:"Miss Iceland Unnur Birna Vilhjalmsdottir was crowned the surprise winner of the Miss World 2005 in a lavish ceremony watched live by millions across the globe. The 21-year-old Reykjavik student, daughter of Miss Iceland 1983, expressed her delight and astonishment at beating out a field of 102 young women from around the world. The green-eyed brunette will serve as a goodwill ambassador and charity fund-raiser for children's causes throughout next year and is likely to profit from a host of modelling and acting contracts.... Vilhjalmsdottir is a student from Reykjavik who has interned as a policewoman during her summer holidays while studying courses in anthropology and aspiring towards a career in law".
Miss Russia Yulia Ivanova won the bathing suit section:
I thought Miss Australia looked better but perhaps I am biased. But note that she is a blonde and even the ENTRANTS from such such fair-haired populations as Russia and Iceland were dark-haired. Since I think it is no mystery that "gentlemen prefer blondes" (Why otherwise are two thirds of the blonde ladies walking around the place not born that way?) so I have no doubt that we are once again being told by the powers that be that our attitudes are all WRONG and that we should have a different ideal of feminine beauty from that which most of us do have.
And the ideal of beauty displayed by Miss Russia is appalling. If ever a girl looked like she needs a good feed, she does. But the lady I most like the looks of (looks only) is Pamela Anderson, so I guess I would think that!
No blonde hair in the photo below either:
(Miss World 2004, Maria Julia Mantilla Garcia of Peru(2L) hands over her crown to 2005 winner Miss Iceland, Unnur Birna Vilhjalmsdottir(2R) as first runner up Miss Puerto Rico, Ingrid Maria Riviera Santos(R) and second runner up Miss Mexico, Dafne Molina Lona(L) look on.)
Georgia Strikes Back
Leftist tyranny in the schools has got so bad that a law is now seen as needed to protect school staff who say "Merry Christmas"!"There's still no peace on Earth in the fight over Christmas and public places. A new bill in the Legislature would protect public workers or public school students from being punished if they say "Merry Christmas" to each other, instead of "Happy Holidays."
The Tragic Dutch Sparrow
I guess this is a sort of animal (think PETA) correctness but it is in any case totally unbalanced -- and unbalanced in the sense of being insane. First a press excerpt:"A sparrow that knocked over 23,000 dominoes and almost derailed a world record attempt before being shot dead will be enshrined in the Rotterdam Natural History Museum, the museum said Friday....
Although common, the house sparrow's numbers have fallen by more than 50 percent in the past 20 years due to human encroachment on their habitat. On Friday, public prosecutors in The Hague issued a euro200 ($235) fine to the exterminator who killed the bird.
A common bird was shot to stop it messing up an event on which many people had worked hard for a long time and it is treated as a national tragedy. I can only conclude that the Dutch have become totally unhinged by all the hostile Muslims in their midst. They seem to be totally unable to do anything to stop the Muslims other than post thousands of armed gurads everywhere so they waste their time and energy on trivia which they can control. All sense of proportion and all perspective have been totally lost.
December 10, 2005
Update: Bible OK After All
This one has been rumbling on for a long time but this may be the end of it. If the notoriously Leftist 9th Circuit approves, it is not likely to be reversed later. Press excerpt:"A federal appeals court reinstated a California man's death sentence, ruling Thursday that jurors did not invalidate their deliberations by considering biblical arguments in favor of vengeance. The Los Angeles jurors in the 1979 case of Stevie Lamar Fields unanimously agreed that death was the appropriate punishment after their foreman circulated biblical and other religious passages - "an eye for an eye," for example - that seemed to require it....
A federal trial judge in Los Angeles reversed Fields' sentence five years ago, citing jury misconduct. The decision by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to reinstate it appears to be the first of its kind and could make Fields, now 49, a candidate for execution in the near future".
A good email from a company manager who reads this blog:"This year I bought the Christmas cards my company sends to our clients from the National Rifle Association. I have been a member of the NRA for many years. The cards clearly state, "Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Happy New Year, with the NRA logo prominently displayed on the back. I have instructed my employees to refer any calls complaining about the message to me. My reply will be "All of the folks in this office Celebrate Christmas, and our cards reflect our best wishes for you and your family. Sorry if it offends you. Your religion or lack of religion doesn't offend me."
So far no complaints from the perpetually offended and aggrieved classes. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you good folks at Tongue Tied. Keep up the Great work."
December 09, 2005
"Insensitive" to Depict a Hellhole as a Hellhole
There are few misfortunes that can befall a human being which are greater than being born in Communist North Korea. I will spare readers details of the brutality and the millions of deaths from starvation but I hope most readers have heard of it already. Just to the South, however, is the wildly prosperous, capitalistic and democratic South Korea. So you might think that the Korean Southerners, of all people, would want to get the word out about the vast suffering among their cousins to the North. But it just aint so. Computer games that give any sort of negative view of the North are banned in South Korea! We read:"Ghost Recon 2, designed for Xbox players, is one of a host of new video games in which the virtual bad guys are North Koreans. But if the Korea Media Rating Board has its way, the game boxes will be stamped "Banned in Korea." While American game designers see North Koreans as diabolical enemies, South Korean game censors say they see North Koreans as wayward cousins. Unhappy that North Koreans are replacing Nazis and cold war Soviets as all-purpose bad guys in electronic battle games, the Korea Media Rating Board, appointed by the president of South Korea, is putting out the word to foreign game makers: check with us before you pay for a translation.
It took a lot of American blood to rescue South Korea from a Communist takeover similar to what has happened in the North but if the North are just "wayward cousins" maybe America should not have bothered. Though the South Koreans are hardly alone in allowing "sensitivity" to elbow out truth.
Update on the Anti-Christmas Crusade:
Sanity has a loss in silly Seattle"Lunch menus imprinted with the words "Merry Christmas" have been discarded and replaced in the Federal Way school district south of Seattle. The December lunch menus for all 23 elementary schools were recalled and reprinted with the words "Happy Holidays" at a cost of almost $500.
But a win in Madeira, Ohio:"A couple has struck a national nerve by offering bracelets that urge: "Just say 'Merry Christmas.'" "It has been so incredible. We've been bowled over by the response," Jennifer Giroux said Thursday.... "There's a national frustration," Giroux said. "Christians have kind of felt empowered to take back Christmas for Christ."
December 08, 2005
Nutritious Food is Bad for you?
It is difficult to know where to start commenting on this piece of nonsense from a supposedly learned man. Excerpt:"SpongeBob SquarePants, Shrek and other characters kids love should promote only healthy food, a panel of scientists recommended. In a report released Tuesday, the Institute of Medicine said television advertising strongly influences what children under 12 eat.
"The foods advertised are predominantly high in calories and low in nutrition -- the sort of diet that puts children's long-term health at risk," said J. Michael McGinnis, a senior scholar at the institute and chairman of the report committee.
The report said evidence is limited on whether TV advertising leads to obesity in children. A study hasn't been done that would demonstrate a direct cause and effect".
If something is high in calories, then it is also high on nutrition. Calories are a measure of how much nourishment a food contains. So the above statement is just politically correct nonsense. What they presumably mean is that advertised foods are TOO nutritrious. There is so much nutrition in them that they make you fat. So we have yet another abuse of language from our would-be dictators.
And they have the gall to tell people to do something while at the same time admitting that they have no evidence for what they say! And since what is supposedly good and bad for you keeps changing, the chance that they ever will have such evidence is remote.
Poisonous Tacos in Nashville?
First a news excerpt:"Citing health concerns, the city is considering a ban on taco trucks and other mobile food wagons that dot the busy streets in Nashville's immigrant neighborhoods. But critics say the proposed ban has more to do with cultural differences than health. "There's a resounding feeling that these actions are driven by racism," said Loui Olivas, a business professor at Arizona State University. Nashville is one of several cities with fast-growing Hispanic populations that have tried to restrict food trucks recently, he said. "Folks weren't pointing fingers or speaking loudly with traditional hot dog vendors or bagel or ice cream vendors," Olivas said. "That's always been a part of growing up in America. Why the concern now?"
The racism accusation should succeed at putting the kybosh on the whole move of course and I think this is one occasion where such an accusation will do some good. We read the real reason for the ban a little later on -- a reason that goes all the way back to Adam Smith:"The 31 trailers were chosen for inspection because they operate every day throughout the city, health inspectors say. "They're not created to function as a full-time restaurant, and that's become the case," said Bradley, who has received complaints from businesses near the food trucks.
What Adam Smith said was that businessmen "seldom gather together except to conspire against the public interest." And getting governments to make rules that squash your competition is as old as the hills.
December 07, 2005
Sexy Student Newspaper OK in Indiana
As a libertarian conservative, I just DON'T believe in censoring things -- which is why I was scornful of the banning of a student newspaper in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. The Tennessee paper got into hot water for frank descriptions of sexual activities. But just about the same thing has just got an official OK in Indiana. The only difference appears to be that the students there were more careful to get the authorities onside first. Press excerpt:"Students were trying to protect fellow teens' well-being with a high school newspaper article on the risks of oral sex, school officials said. The four-page report in last week's Columbus North Triangle emerged after a student brainstorming session, said Kim Green, the school's publications adviser. The report, titled "That Other Sex," discussed oral sex and its medical and psychological risks and featured student interviews on how widespread it has become....
Columbus North Principal David Clark said that he was uncomfortable at first with the content when students discussed the article with him before its publication, but agreed it was important after hearing their arguments".
"Insensitive" to Discuss the Death Penalty
The traditional method for executing criminals who have been condemned to death is hanging and that method was recently used by the government of Singapore to execute a Vietnamese-Australian drug-runner that they caught transiting their airport with a huge stash of heroin on him.
Well, it's no news that many people oppose the death penalty. Given how crooked police and prosecutors often are (See here), I oppose it myself. But Australia's hard-Left "Indymedia" thinks we should not even do opinion polls about hanging. They say:
"Media polls leading up to the execution by Singaporean authorities of an Australian man last week appear to have returned a sentiment that roughly half the country thought Nguyen Tuong Van "should hang". Apart from being grossly offensive and insensitive, the posed question of "Should Van Nguyen Hang" .... ".
So just asking if the drug-runner should hang or not was "insensitive". As usual, discussion of anything in plain language was being declared taboo. Plain language is the enemy of the Left. They NEED obfuscation to hide their total hypocrisy. They held all sorts of rallies and vigils to protest the killing of a death-dealing drug runner but killing untold numbers of totally innocent unborn babies is perfectly OK, of course. And when did any Leftists hold a rally against any of the innumerable executions that the Chinese Communists regularly carry out? Dramatizing themselves is all that Leftists really care about.
It does however make sense that the contemporary Western Left would want to make opinion polls on the death penalty as incomprehensible as possible because such polls regularly show that the general public favour exactly what the Left is arguing against. For more on that see here.
December 05, 2005
False "Racism" Charge Trotted out Again
This sounds bad:
"A former lieutenant in the Allegheny County sheriff's office filed a federal lawsuit yesterday claiming she was discriminated against based on her race, gender and the fact that she chose not to donate to the sheriff's political fund-raising events.... Yvonne Evans, who was the first black woman ever to make sergeant in the department, began working for the sheriff's office in 1986"
But we also read:
"She was fired in February 2004. Chief Skosnik told Ms. Evans in a letter that she had been fired because of derogatory comments she made about Sheriff DeFazio. But Ms. Evans said that's not the case"
And we read next:
"Ms. Evans said she had a reputation for speaking her mind and for standing up for the deputies under her command. She said she always spoke boldly to the sheriff -- including swearing at him"
Sounds to me that by her own admissions the Chief had fair reason to sack her. And I guess it was SO racist to make her a Lieutenant in the first place. (Excerpts from here)
"Sexy" is Taboo in Spring Hill, Tennessee
Is "sexy" a "lewd" word? They seem to think so in Tennessee. The word was banned when it appeared on a sign that was advertising hair-care products in Spring Hill, Tennessee. As a suave Tennessean explained: "The city's sign ordinance says you can't have any lewd language," he said. "I know it's the name of a product, but people objected to the word 'sexy' on the sign." (Source).
"Lewd" means obscene or indecent. So how is it indecent to be sexy? Heaps of women would take it as a compliment to be told that they are sexy. Are there no sexy women in Tennessee? Or is it just that you're not allowed to mention it? Its officials sure make Tennessee sound like an uptight place.
Update: Contraception Information Still Banned in Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Pretty prehistoric in my view
Press excerpt:""A censored version of the Oak Ridge High School newspaper will be printed, schools superintendent Tom Bailey said Tuesday. Administrators at Oak Ridge High School went into teachers' classrooms, desks and mailboxes a week ago to retrieve all 1,800 copies of the student-produced newspaper. An article about birth control and another on student tattoos and body piercings were cited by administrators as the reason for the seizures. Bailey told The Oak Ridger newspaper on Tuesday the edition will be reprinted without the birth control story and with an edited tattoo story....
The seizure of the newspapers had sparked debate inside and outside the school. Monday night's school board meeting drew a large crowded that included students who wore tape with the word 'censored' across their mouths and shirts with protest messages that read 'Ignorance isn't bliss.'"
December 03, 2005
"Stop Snitchin" is Banned Speech in Boston
The Mayor of "tolerant" Boston is trying to confiscate all t-shirts with the words "Stop snitchin" written on them. As it tartly says here: "It is unknown on what grounds the shirts will be seized, the move appearing to be in direct violation of the First, Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments".
"Snitching" means to inform the authorities about lawbreaking among your friends and companions. In Australia it is called "dobbing" and is a national no-no. Whatever you think of it however, free-speech principles should allow you to say whatever you like about it.
Secretive Trial in Georgia
We read here that "A hearing is scheduled today [Friday] for the Carrollton High School history teacher accused of making racist remarks during a class lecture"
So what awful things did he say? Nobody is telling. But I guess this comment speaks volumes:
"We've investigated the situation extensively, and we believe these statements were made," said Wilson, who would not comment on what the remarks were. "Whether they were made intentionally or not, or taken out of context, is not the issue. It was inappropriate regardless," the superintendent said".
That sounds to me like the whole thing is one of our usual Leftist over-reactions to something innocent -- something that is "offensive" only IF it is taken out of context or with the intention distorted.
And what a GREAT education the students are being given when one of their senior administrators tells them that context and intention don't matter! It is one of the major foundations of the Western legal system that intention DOES matter. But not in Carrollton, Georgia, apparently. If I were a Georgian, I would be pretty annoyed about such a Hicksville picture of my State being given to the world.
Sanity has a Small Win in Maine
In Brunswik, Maine, a local firemen's organization wanted to put up a memorial to the past sacrifices of their colleagues. But they wanted to put on the memorial an inscription of a poem that refers to God! Horrors!
And the poem does not refer to women in the "right" way either. It ends: ""And if according to my fate, I am to lose my life, Please bless with your protecting hand, My children and my wife."
Which inspired one local councillor to say: "To put a monument in 2005 on a public piece of property which completely cuts women out of the equation is wrong"
Go figure! Fortunately, the loonies lost and the poem will be allowed. See here