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Wednesday, 31 July 2013

UK National Debt and Welfare State

Niccolo' Macchiavelli statue, Piazzale degli Uffizi, Florence


The UK national debt at the end of the first quarter of 2013 amounted to £1 trillion and 377.4 billion, or 90.7% of total GDP (Gross Domestic Product).

Considering that Britain is the sixth richest country in the world, this is an astonishing figure. Could it have to do with how the economy is managed by our government?

The government is spending more money than it can tax, so it needs to sell bonds (called "gilts") to domestic and foreign investors. Gilts must be repaid in full, with interest. Unpaid loans form the UK's national debt. That debt is enormously growing.

What we have now is a peacetime record. The last time Britain borrowed so much money was during and after the two World Wars.

Spending by the government is similar to spending by the individual in that it can be divided into two types: to produce and to consume.

Spending for welfare state items like benefits and pensions is the most obvious consumption expenditure; health and education can also consume money, especially when they don't deliver.

In all these cases, the money, once spent, has gone forever, there is no return on it.

Spending productively is investing, and the money spent repays itself. The government does that when it invests in infrastructure like energy, transport and communication systems. These will help the country's businesses, increase productivity, generate jobs.

When people demand that the government "create jobs", they often have in mind what Labour did in the interminably long years it was in power from 1997: create redundant, unproductive public-sector jobs draining money from the public coffers. Not all of these jobs are redundant, of course, but a surplus of them just to keep people in employment is.

The government's role is not to create jobs, but to put industry and commerce in the best condition to create them.

The government has a choice: spending - and borrowing - to maintain and even increase our gargantuan welfare system or invest in infrastructure.

There is a limit even for our corrupt, indebted government to how much it can borrow. Money which is spent on benefits will not be invested in infrastructure.

This is why we are caught in this vicious circle of ever-increasing national debt spiralling out of control.

The British government, like Obama's America and the ideologically Leftist political elites of other Western countries, enacts policies not dictated by economic sense but political expediency.

Unfortunately, as Churchill said, democracy is the worst form of government except for all the others.

Democracy, combined with high levels of prosperity, has led to a system in which the politicians bribe the electorate with welfare cheques, food stamps in the USA, and other freebies.

Their preferred choice to be elected is the easiest way, the path of least resistance of liberally giving handouts to voters, putting into practice the long-established crooks' method of spending other people's money with largesse. Why should they care? It's not theirs.

While they are getting elected and re-elected, in the meantime this economic policy can only produce a long-term effect: if the public money is consumed but not invested productively it will constantly decrease, and can only be replaced and repaid by higher tax rates and higher levels of borrowing.

Both of these are deadly for the economy. Higher rates of taxation discourage business and therefore productivity, leading to less hiring and more unemployment. This also results in lower tax revenue, even if the rates are high, because there is less wealth to tax. Elevated fiscal rates have the other undesirable effect of leaving less disposable income available for consumer spending, thus diminishing the demand for products.

Higher levels of public borrowing increase national debt, therefore interest and eventually, due to creditors' mistrust causing reduced credit rating, the interest rates at which the country can borrow.

Britain has recently lost its top triple A credit rating with some agencies.

This is how the government spends our money:
  1. Pensions - 21%
  2. Health care - 18%
  3. Welfare - 17%
  4. Education -13%
  5. Interest - 7%
  6. Defence - 6%
  7. Protection - 5%
  8. Transport - 3%
  9. General government - 2%
The public finances are dominated by the welfare state, which comprises the first 4 biggest items in the budget. The welfare budget includes pensions and tax credits, as well as unemployment, child support, housing, sickness, council tax and other benefits.

The 5th item is the interest on our debt, which exceeds defence, protection - which encompasses protection from crime, emergency services, public order and safety - and transport. The projection is that by the end of 2013 interest will have become the 4th largest public expenditure, overtaking education.

The original purpose of the welfare system was to give a safety net to people in exceptional circumstances but, due partly to the new Marxist idea of redistributionism - redistribution of wealth in society, which in no way should be a democratic government's function - and partly to politicians' tactic of bribing voters with benefits, it has grown into something completely different, which is not just suffocating but slowly killing the economy.

If public money were spent more on investments to help productivity, there would be less need for dole payments. It's a question of rational choice and correct priorities.

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

The Revival of British Patriotism?

UKIP electoral victory

First published on FrontPage Magazine.

By Enza Ferreri

Beside the birth of Prince George, the most significant event to take place in Britain over the last few months has been the incredible rise of a small party opposed to immigration, multiculturalism, the European Union, same-sex marriage — in short, all the things loved by the main parties and ruining Britain.
Coming almost from nowhere, with support of barely 5% of the population, the UK Independent Party (UKIP) had a historical victory in November 2012, achieving a record second place in the by-election held in the northern town of Rotherham to replace the resigning local Member of Parliament. It was the highest percentage of the vote ever achieved by UKIP in any parliamentary election: 21.8%.

This “safe seat” was previously held by Labor, which has provided the town’s MPs since 1933.
Another “far-right” party, the British National Party (BNP), came third, following the extreme-left, Islamophile Respect and the Conservatives.

The fact that the Labor-run Rotherham Council had removed children from a foster home only because the foster couple are members of UKIP played a role in the election results. The thought-police behavior of the council nauseated many.

Rotherham was also one of the numerous English towns where Muslim pedophile gangs were allowed to prey on white girls without being disturbed by local police, social services or the media for 20 years.

This shameful neglect of duty and cover-up, recently brought to light, may have won supporters for the BNP, which first alerted the public to the scandal years ago, but was ignored amid accusations of racism.

Then in February, in another by-election, UKIP did even better, polling 27.8% of the votes, coming in a close second to the Liberal Democrats, and pushing the not-so-conservative Conservative Party into third place.
In that by-election, in Eastleigh, southern England, 55% of all votes went to candidates who opposed the new same-sex marriage law about to be introduced in Britain. Many blamed the Conservative Party’s third place on its leader, Prime Minister David Cameron, who pushed for that law, the same man who had called UKIP supporters “closet racists, loonies, nutters and fruitcakes.”
And finally, in what was described by UKIP leader Nigel Farage as a “game changer,” reshaping British politics possibly forever and making it no longer a three-party, but four-party system, the UKIP stormed the May local elections throughout England and Wales, getting a quarter of the vote nationally, with an astonishing gain in number of seats from 8 to 147.

While someone described the Conservative Party in the coalition government as being on the left of the U.S. Democrats, there have been comparisons made between UKIP and the Tea Party.

Alas, the UKIP, in its ascent to power, has undergone a transformation. Its policy to put an end to the age of “mass uncontrolled immigration” through a 5-year-freeze on immigration and a cap of 50,000 people per annum on future immigration, its main selling point, is under review.

Its positions on Islam have increasingly shown signs of the same battered wife syndrome that has long affected the British elites vis-à-vis the religion of peace, to the point that UKIP is now indistinguishable on this issue from the three mainstream parties — Tories, Labour and Liberal Democrats.

A revealing example was a UKIP politician’s announced visit to a mosque in Scotland, the destination of a school trip that was opposed by almost a third of the schoolchildren’s parents. The man, Jonathan Stanley, said:
I am in no way condemning these parents, but I do not agree with this decision, and so I want to go and reassure the Muslim community.

Contrast this with the position of the BNP, whose Scottish organiser backed the parents:
Unlike UKIP, we fully back the growing number of parents who we feel are saying No to their children being taken to mosques, as if Islam is a part of Scottish heritage and culture, it is not. They are told all about the wonders of Islam, but there is no mention of Islam`s horrific Sharia law, no mention of women being classed as second rate beneath men, as per scriptural understanding. It`s all about cultural conditioning.

The problem with the BNP, though, is that it’s often been accused of having anti-Semitic and racist elements in its midst and even leadership.

How can UKIP take such a nonchalant approach to mosques, when we know that a high number of them are a hotbeds of Islamism and jihad?

Only Saturday, July 27th, the East London Mosque hosted a fundraiser for Cageprisoners, an Islamic charity for Muslim terrorists in prison, including those held at Guantanamo, calling for them to be freed.

These are busy days for British jihadists and counter-jihadists. This is the same mosque about which George Whale of Liberty GB sent a letter of protest to two MPs, which complained about the hundreds of people praying outside the mosque and occupying the pavement, something that has been going on for at least the past three years.

Liberty GB – to which I belong – was formed last March to fill the gap in British politics that exists between the UKIP, a clear Islam appeaser, and parties like the BNP with a less-than-clean reputation.

The party stands for Christian civilization, human rights, animal welfare, capitalism, and against jihad, multiculturalism and mass immigration, and it will contest the 2014 European Elections with its chairman Paul Weston as a candidate.

Liberty GB is part of the increasing British resistance to the Left’s imposition of its various politically correct agendas. This movement includes patriotic, nationalist groups and parties misleadingly called “far right.”

Paul Weston told me:
The rise of so called “right-wing” parties is logical and inevitable. If the Left control the institutions and the Left carry out the policies of mass immigration and divisive multiculturalism, then they can only realistically expect others to resist this path to national suicide. It is not about “right-wing ideology” to combat the Left on this issue, it is about national, racial and cultural survival – a perfectly natural, moral and civilised reaction to an unnatural, immoral and barbaric process propagated by the wicked and genocidally racist Left.
Weston is not new to Americans. He was in the U.S. early last year and made a speech hosted by Act for America in New York, warning America not to go down the same path Britain has taken. He’s planning another visit to the States in September or October.

Could the softening of UKIP’s positions explain its sharp decline in opinion polls, already evident in June and now even more pronounced? It was supported by 18% of respondents in May, 12% in June and now just 7%.

Could UKIP be repeating the mistake the GOP made in choosing half-conservative Romney as a presidential candidate? Maybe people want a clear, uncompromising message and don’t trust U-turns.

There has recently been in Britain a proliferation of nationalist groups and parties.

One of the best-known is the English Defence League (EDL), which is not a party, but a street protest movement. Among the parties, in addition to those already mentioned, are the British Democratic Party and English Democrats, and among the non-party groups are Britain First and England National Resistance.

This fragmentation is a good thing and a bad thing. On one hand, it is a sign of excessive discord and therefore weakness, which may be the result of the difficulty of doing political work when one is constantly accused of the worst thought crimes under the sun.

On the other hand, this mushrooming of truly conservative organizations is a sign of how dissatisfied the British public is with the vast shift of the nation’s politics to the extreme left. Being Christian in the UK is regarded as something to hide, to be ashamed of. The “culture wars” that in America are still being fought are over in Britain, having been won by the “progressives.”

The birth of future king Prince George may indicate that some elements of traditional British culture and institutions are still alive and kicking, the monarchy being the best example.

But we’re not so lucky. Even that is under threat of corruption from the Islamophile monarch-in-waiting Prince Charles, who doesn’t recognize the primacy, let alone uniqueness, of Christianity, and from the new same-sex marriage law, which would lead to problematic legitimacy of heirs to the throne.


About
Enza Ferreri is an Italian-born, London-based Philosophy graduate, author and journalist. She has been a London correspondent for several Italian magazines and newspapers, including Panorama, L’Espresso, and La Repubblica. She is on the Executive Council of the UK’s party Liberty GB. She blogs at www.enzaferreri.blogspot.co.uk.

Tories' Fear of UKIP Creates Useless Ads

Go home or face arrest - UK government billboard against illegal immigration


The UK's Immigration Minister Mark Harper on The Daily Mail defends a government campaign of mobile billboards aimed at illegal immigrants telling them to go home or be prepared to be arrested.

He says:
But the reaction they have generated from the Left and the pro-immigration industry has been astonishing. They have denounced that simple message as ‘racist’.

Let me clear this up once and for all – it is not racist to ask people who are here illegally to leave Britain. It is merely telling them to comply with the law.

Our campaign targets illegal immigrants without any discrimination at all between them. By no stretch of the rational imagination can it be described as ‘racist’.

Furthermore, the campaign is not meant to, and does not, discourage legal immigrants who have earned the right to live or settle in Britain. To claim that the poster campaign is unfair to legal migrants is silly.
And that's the problem. This campaign does nothing about the too many immigrants who are or, like the Romanians and Bulgarians, are shortly going to come here legally.

Nor, for that matter, can do much about illegal immigrants. They know they are illegal: if they wanted to obey the law of the country they wouldn't have entered Britain. A billboard will not make law-abiding people of them.

But what the Conservatives want is just to appear to do something. The UK Independence Party, although opinion polls show that its support is fast declining, has already made its impact felt through the fear it has instilled in the pseudo-conservatives.

Is Sex outside the Sphere of Morality?

Peter Singer, Practical Ethics
"Sex raises no special moral issues at all. Decisions about sex may involve considerations of honesty, concern for others, prudence and so on, but there is nothing special about sex in this respect, for the same could be said of decisions about driving a car. (In fact the moral issues raised by driving a car, both from an environmental and from a safety point of view, are much more serious than those raised by having sex.) Accordingly this book contains no discussion of sexual morality."

This is from the introductory pages of Practical Ethics (Amazon US)Practical Ethics by Peter Singer , (Amazon UK) by the influential contemporary moral philosopher Peter Singer, a Leftist utilitarian with whose views, I hasten to add, I agree on other major issues, such as animal liberation and equality.
In Our Hands : A Plan To Replace The Welfare State by Charles Murray
I used to believe that sex had nothing to do with ethics, long before I read Peter Singer.

I now think that I was wrong and Peter Singer still is.

The effects of the “sexual revolution” promoted by the 60s “liberation movements” have been:

1) increase in the number of single mothers and illegitimate births, with the social consequences of increases in welfare dependency, unemployment rate and crime rate, put simply a growth in the phenomenon that sociologist Charles Murray calls “the underclass”. I refer you to his books Losing Ground: American Social Policy, 1950-1980 (Amazon US) , (Amazon UK) Charles Murray, Losing Ground; The Underclass Revisited (AEI Studies in Social Welfare Policy) (Amazon US)The Underclass Revisited (AEI Studies in Social Welfare Policy) by Charles Murray, (Amazon UK) ; In Our Hands : A Plan To Replace The Welfare State (Amazon US)In Our Hands : A Plan To Replace The Welfare State by Charles Murray, (Amazon UK) , because these connections are well documented there, socially and statistically.

2) increase in child molestation, children's sexual abuse and paedophilia. In a world where everyone seems to be enjoying “sexual freedom”, no wonder paedophiles will be feeling that they are the only ones excluded from the party.

3) increase in teenage sex

4) increase in teenage pregnancy

5) increase in sexual transmitted diseases among children and teenagers

6) large increase in sexual trasnsmitted diseases among adults

7) creation and perpetuation of the AIDS epidemic.

How’s that for the consequences of something that should raise no ethical question, from the viewpoint of a consequentialist philosopher like utilitarian Singer?

The Death of Right and Wrong: Exposing the Left's Assault on Our Culture and Values by Tammy Bruce
A writer who has intelligently explored this subject is Tammy Bruce, author of The Death of Right and Wrong: Exposing the Left's Assault on Our Culture and Values (Amazon US)The Death of Right and Wrong: Exposing the Left's Assault on Our Culture and Values by Tammy Bruce (Amazon UK) .

Tammy Bruce is an unusual writer, in that she is a lesbian feminist, actually a former activist and leader in both gay and women’s movements in the USA, who denounces what she calls the Left Elite of which she was part before leaving in disgust.

She puts in direct connection the Left’s agenda and the homosexual and feminists movements with the repercussions of sexual freedom I listed above, of which she holds Leftists responsible.

Friday, 26 July 2013

Fellow Traveller Obama Lauds Ho Chi Minh

Barack Hussein Obama


If someone, especially a public figure, praised Hitler, he would certainly be called all names under the sun, and in particular "nazi" and "fascist".

How is it, then, that top political leaders on both sides of the Atlantic can express admiration for the worst communist dictators and killers with impunity, as if they had eulogized great statesmen or munificent philanthropists?

If commending Hitler makes you a nazi, doing the same with Ho Chi Minh should make you a communist. Fair is fair. But not in the world of the left-dominated media and "progressive" elites.

This is exactly what Barack Hussein Obama did during the visit Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang at the White House.

Obama is not unique. When Venezuelan communist President Hugo Chavez, who had praised the infamous terrorist Carlos the Jackal and Mugabe, died, it turned out that he had many friends among our Western leaders, including British politicians William Hague, George Galloway, hard-left Labour Ken Livingstone and Jeremy Corbyn.

From PJ Media (emphases added):
President Obama hailed hard-core communist revolutionary Ho Chi Minh today as a pretty open guy who was actually inspired by the Founders...

After meeting with the leader of a country that persecutes and imprisons bloggers and priests, suppresses media and any form of political dissent and uses forced labor, Obama said they “discussed the challenges that all of us face when it comes to issues of human rights.”

“We emphasized how the United States continues to believe that all of us have to respect issues like freedom of expression, freedom of religion, freedom of assembly,” the president continued. “And we had a very candid conversation about both the progress that Vietnam is making and the challenges that remain.”

The visit by Sang, he said, “signifies the maturing and the next stage of the development between the United States and Vietnam.”

Obama said Sang concluded the meeting by sharing “a copy of a letter sent by Ho Chi Minh to Harry Truman.”

“And we discussed the fact that Ho Chi Minh was actually inspired by the U.S. Declaration of Independence and Constitution, and the words of Thomas Jefferson. Ho Chi Minh talks about his interest in cooperation with the United States. And President Sang indicated that even if it’s 67 years later, it’s good that we’re still making progress.”

Sang said the pair “had a very candid, open, useful and constructive discussion.”
These are excerpts from "The Blood-Red Hands of Ho Chi Minh", published in Reader’s Digest in November 1968 (emphases added):
Suddenly, the boy came out of the jungle and ran across the rice paddies toward the village. He was crying. His mother ran to him and swept him up in her arms. Both of his hands had been cut off, and there was a sign around his neck, a message to his father: if he or any one else in the village dared go to the polls during the upcoming elections, something worse would happen to the rest of his children.

The VC [Vietcong] delivered a similar warning to the residents of a hamlet not far from Danang. All were herded before the home of their chief. While they and the chief’s pregnant wife and four children were forced to look on, the chief’s tongue was cut out. Then his genital organs were sliced off and sewn inside his bloody mouth. As he died, the VC went to work on his wife, slashing open her womb. Then, the nine-year-old son: a bamboo lance was rammed through one ear and out the other. Two more of the chief’s children were murdered the same way...

Then their wives and children, including a number of two- and three-year-olds, had been brought into the street, disrobed, tortured and finally executed: their throats were cut; they were shot, beheaded, disemboweled...

These atrocities are not isolated cases; they are typical... While the naive and anti-American throughout the world, cued by communist propaganda; have trumpeted against American “immorality” in the Vietnam war — aerial bombing, the use of napalm, casualties caused by American combat action — daily and nightly for years, the communists have systematically authored history’s grisliest catalogue of barbarism. By the end of 1967, they had committed at least 100,000 acts of terror against the South Vietnamese people. The record is an endless litany of tortures, mutilations and murders that would have been instructive even to such as Adolf Hitler...

Hence the enemy has largely succeeded in casting himself in the role of noble revolutionary. It is long past time for Americans, who are sick and tired of being vilified for trying to help South Vietnam stay free, to take a hard look at the nature of this enemy.

Bloodbath Discipline.

The terror had its real beginning when Red dictator Ho Chi Minh consolidated his power in the North. More than a year before his 1954 victory over the French, he launched a savage campaign against his own people. In virtually every North Vietnamese village, strong-arm squads assembled the populace to witness the “confessions” of landowners. As time went on, businessmen, intellectuals, school teachers, civic leaders — all who represented a potential source of future opposition — were also rounded up and forced to “confess” to “errors of thought.” There followed public “trials,” conviction and, in many cases, execution. People were shot, beheaded, beaten to death; some were tied up, thrown into open graves and covered with stones until they were crushed to death, Ho has renewed his terror in North Vietnam periodically. Between 50,000 and 100,000 are believed to have died in these blood-baths — in a coldly calculated effort to discipline the party and the masses. To be sure, few who escape Ho’s terror now seem likely to tempt his wrath. During the 1950s, however, he had to quell some sizeable uprisings in North Vietnam — most notably one that occurred in early November 1956, in the An province, which included Ho’s birthplace village of Nam Dan. So heavily had he taxed the region that the inhabitants finally banded together and refused to meet his price. Ho sent troops to collect, and then sent in an army division, shooting. About 6,000 unarmed villagers were killed. The survivors scattered, some escaping to the South. The slaughter went largely unnoticed by a world then preoccupied with the Soviet Union’s rape of Hungary.


Photo from mediajorgenyc

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Petition against Italy's Freedom-Killing "Homophobia Bill"

Gay Pride in Genoa, Italy


In Italy, several websites are collecting signatures for a petition opposing the "bill against homophobia and transphobia".

It is an oppressive, totalitarian and dangerous piece of legislation, threatening freedom of speech and religion. The petition has already collected 24,000 signatures (including mine) in a few days.

The Italian Parliament's lower house, the Chamber of Deputies, is about to discuss a new "bill against homophobia and transphobia". If approved, this law would have serious repercussions on the fundamental human rights recognized by the Italian Constitution, including the right to freedom of thought (art. 21) and freedom of religion (art. 19).

Under this law, people could be indicted (and subject to imprisonment up to one year and six months) for:

1. urging MPs not to introduce a gay marriage law;

2. proposing to deny children's adoption to homosexual couples;

3. thinking of organizing a propaganda campaign to oppose the introduction of a gay marriage law;

4. saying publicly that homosexuality is a "grave depravity," quoting the Scriptures (Genesis 19.1 to 29; Rm 1.24 to 27, 1 Cor 6:9-10, 1 Tim 1:10.);

5. declaring publicly that homosexual acts are "intrinsically disordered" (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Persona Humana Declaration)

6. maintaining that homosexual acts are "contrary to natural law," because "they preclude the sexual act from the gift of life and are not the result of a genuine affective and sexual complementarity" (art. 2357 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church).

This law would ban any organization, association, movement or group "inciting" to prevent homosexuals from marrying and adopting children (imprisonment from six months to four years for participants, from one to six years for founders and leaders).

This law would introduce for the first time in the Italian legislation the definition of "gender identity" as "the perception that a person has of himself or herself as belonging to the male or female gender, although opposite to his or her biological sex", pace the principle of legal certainty and objectivity of the offence.

This law allows for citizens to be subjected to a sort of re-education through a further punishment - to be served "at the end of the jail sentence" - consisting in work "in support of associations for the protection of homosexual persons."

In fact homosexuals already enjoy the legal instruments provided by the Italian penal code against all forms of unjust discrimination, violence, offence to personal dignity.

The bill on homophobia, therefore, has no reason to enter the country's legal system.

Opposing it means fighting against the risk of a dangerous violation of the freedom of expression of religious thought and belief, the foundation of all civil liberties.


Photo by daameriva

Monday, 22 July 2013

Current Riots Are the Perpetuation of What Caused the Death of Trayvon Martin

Trayvon Martin


From the article "Dr. Carson: 'Tone Down Rhetoric' on Race" :
Trayvon Martin probably had a "fight-or-flight" frame of mind the night he was fatally shot by George Zimmerman, Dr. Ben Carson said on "Fox News Sunday."

Carson, speaking to host Chris Wallace from Sun Valley, Idaho, said youths who grow up in inner cities experience the world differently than those who grow up "in a gated community in Palm Springs."

"You have a situation where you have a young black male walking home, not doing anything incorrect, and he ends up killed, and nobody suffers any consequences," Carson said.

"On the surface, that would appear to be a gross miscarriage of justice. Those of us in leadership positions need to be looking for things that we can take out of this situation that will be helpful, not things that inflame the situation.

Let's tone down the rhetoric and recognize that we the people aren't each other's enemies," he said.
Carson said he is from an inner city and "when you grow up in that environment, you develop a different type of philosophy."

"Trayvon Martin may well have had that philosophy and went into this fight-or-flight mode," Carson said.
Yes, it's a bad philosophy to bash someone's head for no reason. If Martin is the victim of somebody or something, he's the victim of that horrifying idea that blacks are always the victim and must always be prepared to react with violence, the same idea that we now see in action in all those so-called "demonstrations" which are in fact looting and vandalism sprees, fomented by the rhetoric of career "anti-racists" who are in reality the true racists, the various Jesse Jacksons and Al Sharptons, a group which now seems to include Barack Hussein Obama as well.


An Island in Revolt: A Window into Europe’s Future

People fleeing unrest in Tunisia are escorted by Guardia di Finanza police officers as they arrive at the southern Italian island of Lampedusa


First published on FrontPage Magazine.

By Enza Ferreri

One could be justified for being perplexed about Pope Francis’s choice of Lampedusa, a tiny island off the coast of Sicily and Italy’s — indeed Europe’s — southernmost tip, as the destination of his very first official visit, which took place on July 8. Not a world capital, not a place in some important geopolitical region of the globe.

What is significant, even symbolic, about Lampedusa is its geography: The small island, with a population of 5,000, is positioned in the middle of the Mediterranean, making it close to the Muslim world, even closer to Tunisia than Sicily.

These two conditions explain what’s been happening to Lampedusa for over a decade, and how it could be a miniature model of the whole of Europe in the not-too-distant future.

Since at least 2001, Lampedusa has been a primary entry point into Europe for immigrants, mostly illegal from Africa. Tens of thousands have been landing here over the years, peaking during the “Arab Spring.” In 2011, according to a report of the United Nation’s Human Rights Council, “[a]pproximately 60,000 irregular migrants arrived [in Italy] as part of the 2011 influx from North Africa,” mainly from Tunisia and Libya. Around 50,000 of these came to Lampedusa.

Over 10,000 received residence permits on humanitarian grounds, because the Italian government declared a state of humanitarian emergency in February 2011, subsequently extended until December 2012.

In Lampedusa, the temporary immigrant reception center where outsiders were accommodated and sent to other facilities where they could request asylum, became so overcrowded that thousands of people had to sleep outdoors and in shelters provided by the local parish and ordinary Lampedusans.

The immigrants, among whom were suspected escaped prisoners, were given temporary visas and then gradually transferred to mainland Italy and other EU countries, but there were many times when the number of newcomers was higher than that of the locals.

On those occasions, when natives were outnumbered, there were tales of local women having to be accompanied everywhere to protect them from immigrants’ unwanted attention, sacked shops, apartment doors forced open, people returning home to find Tunisians sitting at the dining table eating and, after the intruders’ departure, some householders even discovering faeces inside saucepans.

The island became what one newspaper called “a huge immigrant camp.”

Maybe expecting to find a hotel reception and with scarcely a thought about the crisis they were creating on the small island, the illegal immigrants were complaining, as in the video below, describing what they found in Lampedusa as “shameful” and pontificating “the reception is zero” as if they were giving a hotel review on TripAdvisor:





This video confirms what Lampedusa Mayor Bernardino De Rubeis said: “We have here young Tunisians who arrogantly want everything immediately, just like criminals, ready to endanger our lives and theirs.” He later added: “We’re in a war, and the people will react. There are people here who want to go out into the streets armed with clubs.”

The reception center was burnt down twice by the migrants, during inmate riots in February 2009 and in September 2011. The media blamed everyone for the arson: the Italian government, the provisional Tunisian government, the EU; all except the actual perpetrators. In April 2011 the illegals set fire to a guest house where they were staying at the expense of a charity organization, and threw rocks at the police.

Without the reception center, they had to be accommodated in hotels and tourist villages, which are virtually the place’s only economic resources.

Aliens overwhelmed the 5,000-inhabitants island and took advantage of their hospitality, subjecting the place to unusually high levels of violence and crime. Lampedusa is a micro-representation of what will happen to Europe if both current Muslim immigration and European demographic trends continue, when the proportion of natives and migrants will be the same in Europe as it’s been in Lampedusa. The islanders’ reaction, a small civil war, could also represent a prediction of future continent-wide events.

At the height of the immigration flux, confronted with an unprecedented crisis and left to their own devices to deal with it, the people of Lampedusa used “direct action” methods.

They stopped the Italian Coast Guard patrol boat, loaded with still more “rescued” North Africans. Women occupied the harbour and docks, chained themselves, overturned wheelie bins and blocked the road. Fishermen pulled boats to the entrance to the harbour. “Nobody enters here any more,” the women shouted from the quay where patriotic flags were flying. To chants of “freedom!” they raised a banner: “We are full.”

The island descended into chaos. An urban riot occurred, with violent clashes between hundreds of Tunisians, police and locals. Many were injured. Three Lampedusans tried to assault their mayor, who barricaded himself in his office with a baseball bat for self-defence, while outside dozens were protesting against him and the immigrants, who wandered around the streets after having burnt down the reception center.

Islanders attacked journalists and TV crews. Tunisians and Lampedusans threw rocks at each other after illegals had threatened to explode gas cylinders near a petrol pump.

The reality is that this was a pseudo-humanitarian crisis: the illegals overwhelmingly were not refugees but economic migrants. What’s for years been called an “emergency” continues. Every day there are new arrivals.

The number of immigrants to Italy from the Mediterranean is growing. In the first 6 months of 2013, 7,800  of them arrived on Italy’s southern coasts, compared to 3,500 in the first 6 months of 2012. About three quarters landed on Lampedusa from Africa, the rest disembarked on Italy’s south-eastern coast in Apulia from Greece and Turkey.

The Pope, unfortunately, seems to have gone to Lampedusa in order to make everybody feel guilty for the immigrants, those lost at sea and the survivors. He condemned the “globalisation of indifference”; he talked about “the frontier of the desperate” and tragedies of people crossing the sea to seek a better life.

His sermon’s been received with mixed reactions. While Italy’s Prime Minister Enrico Letta has promised to put into practice the Holy Father’s appeal through more European co-operation (nothing new here, Italy has unsuccessfully tried for years to pass the buck to Europe), the political Right hasn’t been so keen.

Fabrizio Cicchitto, of Silvio Berlusconi’s party, PDL, pointed out that religious preaching is one thing, but a country’s management of such a complex and even intractable problem as illegal immigration — further aggravated by the presence of criminal groups — is another.

Erminio Boso of the secessionist, “far-Right” Northern League has been more outspoken: “I don’t care about what the Pope did. Indeed, I’m asking him to give land and money for the extra-comunitari [immigrants from outside the European Union]. I’m defending my own land.”

The Italian blog Diavoli Neri has made the interesting observation that the Vatican City State’s law declares that those found in its territory without authorization may be expelled, subject to fine or imprisonment. Further evidence, it concludes, that the Papal sermon, as so often, was beautiful and touching, but government laws are another matter.

A Northern Italian radio phone-in program aired irate messages from its audience: “I would have expected a few words [from the Pope] for those who are killed and raped by them [the immigrants]“; “As a Catholic I’m outraged. I’ve never heard this or another pope worry for the massacres that they commit”; “We have to prevent them from coming here. Let’s shut everything up and start thinking as a macro-region.”

Much of the immigration debate in Italy centers on whether to give citizenship to Italian-born children of immigrants, a worrying prospect considering that one third of the so-called “new Italians” are Muslim.

Particularly vociferous in support of the proposal is the Minister for Integration, Congolese Cecile Kyenge, who claims that this would “acknowledge a path to integration of the parents.”

Italians should look more closely at the experience of countries with a longer history of Third-World immigration, like Britain, where Muslim immigrants of second and third generation are more devout, orthodox and radicalized than their parents and grandparents. Something similar happens in Germany. Rather than a “path to integration” we witness a “path to Islamization.”

Either Kyenge doesn’t know what’s going on in the rest of Europe – where the policies she recommends are bringing to ruin entire countries – or she knows it very well, in which case she is a dangerous woman.

It’s already taking place in Italy too: among the hundreds of second- and third-generation immigrants leaving Europe to fight alongside the jihadist rebels in Syria there are 45-50 who lived in Italy.

In conclusion, the lesson from the Lampedusa experience is that there’s a limit to what indigenous populations can take. While it’s true that the most common reaction of native Europeans to Third-World non-military invasion so far has been leaving the city or country where this colonization occurs, it may not stay like this forever. There could sooner or later be a breaking point.

Friday, 19 July 2013

Journalist Enza Ferreri Joins Liberty GB Executive Council

Liberty GB leaflet against halal meat and the Islamisation of Britain


Below is an announcement from the website of my party Liberty GB. Above is our new leaflet against halal meat and the Islamisation of Britain.


We are delighted to welcome Enza Ferreri to the Liberty GB Executive Council, to fill the currently vacant role of Press Officer. Enza is an experienced journalist who has written many outstanding articles for this website and for major European and US websites, and has helped shape Liberty GB's philosophy and policies. She will be an invaluable addition to the team.

******

I am Italian, I was born and grew up in Viareggio, a seaside resort on the coast of Tuscany, a few miles from Pisa, whose university I attended.

I came to live in London in 1984 partly because I loved England (and partly because I've always wanted to be where I was not).

My attraction for Britain began when I was 13, in 1967, due to my fascination with the Rolling Stones and 'Swinging London'. The fact that I've always been a passionate animal lover and Britain had then the most advanced animal welfare movement in the world reinforced my preference. I saw Britain as a land of freedom and solid moral values.

You can then imagine my disappointment when I witnessed Britain descend into the current multicultural abyss. I may as well have gone to Pakistan, Nigeria, Lybia or Egypt.

I don't want to convey the impression that I don't love Italy. Typical to my nature, since I've been here I started seeing my country of birth's good aspects, such as the fact that Italy is home to the greatest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and to half of the world's great art treasures.

My being Italian can actually help our party establish connections with like-minded parties in Italy.

One thing I had was a good education, in which Italy, in fairness, excelled, at least at that time. The secondary school I attended was the Liceo Classico, where among other things I studied Latin and ancient Greek, for which I am grateful because this is the basis – along with Christianity – of Western civilisation. Latin is a very logical language and it teaches you to think analytically. Later I got a degree in Philosophy from the University of Pisa. I am interested in the theoretical foundations of things, in philosophy and science.

But I also want practical action, to make a change in the world. That's why I became a journalist, corresponding from London for the Italian press, initially almost exclusively on animal issues. I saw journalism as a political activity.

I suppose this is why Liberty GB offered me the role of Press Officer. I have a fair idea of how the media think, what interests them in a story.

When Liberty GB was formed I immediately became very enthusiastic about it. I believe our party has enormous potential. People are deeply disappointed with the current political elite and the social chaos it has created. They are unhappy about the results, but don't yet clearly see the causes. Liberty GB will grow and achieve its goals if we manage – and I don't see any reason why we shouldn't be able to do so – to explain that what people don't like in today's Britain is caused by the current dominant political ideology, cultural Marxism, and give them a much better, constructive alternative.

It ain't over yet. Demography is not our destiny. If it were, then we would easily win the battle, because we are still the great majority. But the majority is not fighting Islamisation. Why? Because it has been indoctrinated by 6-7 decades of cultural Marxism.

We need to reverse that brainwashing. That is our priority. To fight Islam, mass immigration, the EU or any other evil the Left has thrown at us, which are the symptoms, without addressing the ideology they stem from, which is the disease, would be like curing a headache without treating the underlying brain tumour.

Antonio Gramsci was right: we need to win the cultural war and wake up the consciousness of people before we can win the political war. The Left did it and won; now it's our turn, we'll do the same.

This is why militant atheists like Pat Condell and the late Christopher Hitchens who are anti-Christianity as well as anti-Islam help, whether they like it or not, the Islamisation of Britain. I believe that without Christianity, at least as a system of ethics if not of theology, Britain will become Muslim. Unlike individuals, societies cannot be atheist. For reasons of space, I'll explain why in a future article. Suffice it to say that Christianity has always been the great target of socio-communism and other would-be destroyers of Western civilisation.

And also, this is why what Americans call the 'culture wars', on issues like abortion on demand, the fatherless society, the destruction of the family and the normalisation of homosexuality, must necessarily be fought if we want to go to the root of the problem and not just deal with the surface. We should devote more attention to the same-sex marriage bill about to become British law, a terrible blow to both the institution of marriage and freedom of speech, since opponents will be silenced in any possible way. Our enemies, the elites, the establishment, will get stronger because of that.

I think that campaigns with very specific targets – an example of which is our anti-halal-meat campaign about to be launched with leaflets and a petition – are very useful because, by focusing on a particular topic, they may attract more attention and unite people on something they feel strongly about. It's a little bit like the tactic used by magazines of focusing on an individual case of a person or a family when introducing a wider topic. People relate better to a larger issue by starting with a particular, specific way of looking at it. Other examples, in relation to Islam, may be anti-mosque and anti-paedophile-rings campaigns.

Halal meat is an ideal target not only because many people care about the animal welfare concerns ritual slaughter raises and are not prepared to tolerate it, but also because it very clearly demonstrates the impossibility to accommodate our values with those of Islam and how in this conflict we'll always lose since Islamic supremacism will force itself on us and we'll have no choice but submit to Sharia law. Non-Muslims are, against their knowledge, eating halal meat, whether they like it or not.

Liberty GB's Executive Council comprises very able people, each with different skills and expertise that complement and complete those of the others.

I can see no reason why we should not succeed.

www.enzaferreri.blogspot.co.uk | Follow on Facebook enza.ferreri | Save the West | Follow on Twitter @EnzaFerreri

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Black Racist Crime Is an American Epidemic




This is more shocking than anything I expected.

One of the many cases of racially-motivated violence of blacks on whites in the USA happened in June in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where a black male attacked random white people, unprovoked, punching them several times with a glove containing shards of glass and throwing chairs at others. Witnesses say he made racially charged comments during the attack. One of the victims was a 7-month pregnant woman induced into labour due to the assault.

The African-American economist and socio-political theorist Thomas Sowell, referring to the book described in the article below, wrote: "Reading Colin Flaherty's book made painfully clear to me that the magnitude of this problem is even greater than I had discovered from my own research."

From the article "Black racism in Florida: “Polar bear hunting” is illegal" by Dr. Richard Swier (links are in the original):
Are you familiar with the Knockout Game? It is a racially motivated violent game that targets whites. In Florida it is called ”polar bear hunting” and it is illegal.

How is it played?

You start with a group of blacks that number anywhere from 3 to 30 people. As a group, they search for white people, preferably alone, elderly and somewhat defenseless. If they can’t find any, Asians are the next ethnic group targeted. When a target is selected, at least one of the blacks approaches the target and then suddenly sucker punches them in the face as hard as they can. If the victim is knocked out, the person that hit them wins. If the victim is not knocked out, then you continue to hit and kick them until you’re too tired to hit anymore or until the person is dead.

Knockout has become all too common in St. Louis, Missouri. In the past two years, there have been at least 100 Knockout victims, some of which have died. In 2011, one victim was Matt Quain, who was jumped by a group of black teens and beaten, suffered numerous abrasions to his face along with a broken jaw. One of the teens involved in the attack was Demetrius Murphy, a member of one of the most heinous groups in St. Louis known as the “Knockout Gang”...




Colin Flaherty has documented this epidemic of black mob violence in his new book “White Girl Bleed a Lot: The return of racial violence and how the media ignore it.” Flaherty documents, “The Midwest state fair with a ‘Beat Whitey Night?’ Or the Black Beach Week that turns a town into a ‘living hell?’ Or the school principal who blamed Asian students for being racist after suffering years of abuse? The eleven episodes of racial violence on the Fourth of July 2012? Some involving more than 1000 black people?”

Knockout is a racial hate crime that is being ignored and swept under the rug by black social leaders like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson Sr. and the media. If a group of whites played Knockout and targeted blacks, Sharpton, the media and the national press would be giving it the coverage of the George Zimmerman trial, but since it’s blacks targeting whites, everyone just turns their heads and says nothing.

According to US and World Report, “A poll released Wednesday [July 3, 2013] by Rasmussen found African-Americans are more likely to be viewed as racist than whites. Thirty-seven percent of poll respondents said “most black Americans” are racist, compared to just 15 percent who said most whites are racist and 18 percent who said most Hispanics are racist.”

Hunting “polar bears” adds fuel to the black racist fire.

Is Egypt Turning the 2011 Uprisings into a Real “Arab Spring”?

Wake up America, Obama backs up a fascist regime in Egypt banner during an Egyptian protest


First published on Raymond Ibrahim site.

By Enza Ferreri



When one thinks of the events and processes that developed during Morsi's one-year presidency of Egypt, it's difficult to see how a person who loves democracy, human rights, freedom of speech and of religion cannot but welcome his ousting.

In that time, for example, the Egyptian Minister of Religious Endowments Ali Afifi, in an interview aired on Sada Al-Balad TV on March 14, 2013 said: "[W]e hope that the words of the Prophet Muhammad will be fulfilled: 'Judgment Day will not come before the Muslims fight the Jews, and the Jews will hide behind the rocks and the trees, but the rocks and the trees will say: Oh Muslim , oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him – except for the gharqad tree, which is one of the trees of the Jews.' We fully believe that the future of this land lies with Islam and the Muslims." He was accused of appointing in leading positions in his ministry figures with ties with the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafi movement.

In the year 2012, under the Islamist rule of the Muslim Brotherhood's political arm, the fatwas, Sharia-based legal decrees issued by learned Muslims, differed considerably from the previous Egyptian fatwas. The more power the Brotherhood has, the more rooted in the worst authoritarian and violent elements of Sharia law the fatwas are.

Raymond Ibrahim translated a summary of them. Among others, they include calling for the destruction of the Sphinx and the Great Pyramids; opposing setting a minimum age in the new constitution concerning the marriage of minor girls, saying “they can get married at any time”; ruling that the peace treaty with Israel contradicts the teachings of Sharia and should be annulled, quoting the Koran; denouncing all Muslims opposed to President Morsi, explaining that the Koran declares it to be forbidden to disobey those in authority; banning congratulating Christian Copts on their religious holidays, and forbidding Muslim cab and bus drivers from transporting Christian priests to their churches; forbidding all Muslim women from marrying any of the sons of the “remnants” of the old regimes, portraying them as non-pious Muslims; banning people from joining Muhammad al-Baradei’s “Dustor” political party, claiming him to be a secularist and opposed to the implementation of Allah’s laws.

Morsi may have been democratically elected - although there are suspicions of rigged elections - but so were Hitler and Mussolini. And, just like them, once elected he assumed dictatorial powers. His new constitution was intended to establishd a Sharia state in Egypt.

Until now, counterjihad analysts have been practically the only ones to make the correct predictions about the "Arab Spring" being an Islamist takeover, even though the underlying people's rebellion may have been sustained by genuine economic and political concerns.

In Egypt, we are now witnessing perhaps the first sign of a process that upsets those neat predictions and complicates matters. For the good.

The figures speak volumes: "Obama probably hates it that the 30 million souls who took to the streets in Cairo and throughout Egypt for the largest protests in human history dare to call it a ‘revolution’, says Canada Free Press.

So, how to interpret the new developments? Since I live in London, let's look at what the UK media make of them.

Is it a coup or is it not a coup? This seems to be one of the dominant questions about the ousting of Egypt's Morsi in the British media.

The answer to that question depends very much on the respondent's opinion on whether the ousting's outcome is positive or negative, which in turn rests on his/her view of the Muslim Brotherhood.

As can be expected, left-wing media outlets like The Guardian tend to have a favourable view, even sympathetic, of this "democratically elected" Islamist presidency, so they, taking their cue from the Muslim Brotherhood, call Morsi's deposition a coup and consider .

Generally speaking, right-wing papers like The Telegraph take the view that what counts as democracy is not just the elections but the will of the population however expressed. Morsi acted like an autocrat, did not give people what he had promised them, betrayed the spirit of the revolution and, in the face of mounting popular opposition, refused to concede early elections. So, rather than using force to impose its will, the military deployed its might to implement the will of the people. Ergo, they say, it's not a coup.

These two factions do not even agree about numbers: for the former "hundreds of thousands more took to the street in support of Morsi" (BBC); for the latter "The protesters' superiority in numbers to anything the Brotherhood could muster was self-evident" (Telegraph).

Bu things are never so simple and black-and-white. The Telegraph's chief political commentator, Peter Oborne, thinks that the Islamist regime, like that of Algeria in 1991, has not been given a chance. To do what, I'd like to ask, cut off more hands? Massacre more Christians? Talking of whom, that's what he says: "Mohammed el Baradei (and the Coptic Church) have done himself great damage by backing the military intervention. Whatever form of government comes next will lack legitimacy because of the methods used today."

Morsi has committed no crime and doesn't deserve to be in custody, he claims, and current events are disastrous for the relationship between the West and the Muslim world.

A noteworthy thing is that when some of Britain's militant atheists, for whom this country is rightly famous - or infamous -, like Pat Condell, criticises Morsi's Egypt, in the list of atrocities, along with the usual hanging of homosexuals and stoning of women, he includes "treatment of minorities", sometimes with the helpful addition of "religious", but is never quite capable of bringing himself to utter the word "Christian".

Some antijihadists consider visceral atheists allies because they can be strong critics of Islam. But they don't seem to be aware that atheist commentators who also profoundly dislike and ruthlessly attack Christianity are, whether they realize it or not, giving a helping hand to Islam's penetration into Western society.

Whether the ousting of Morsi is viewed favourably or not, although dependent on the commentator's political ideas, also rests on the division "between those who emphasize process and those who emphasize substance", as New York Times columnist David Brooks put it.

It's an exceptional circumstance if I find myself in agreement with the NYT, so you'll forgive me if I expand on that. He sums up the two camps as, in the former, those for whom following the correct democratic electoral procedure is more important, thinking that ruling in a democracy will reform the Brotherhood and make it moderate. And in the latter those who don't think that democracy lies in "counting heads" but in what you intend to do once you're in power, and in that respect Morsi can be elected till kingdom come he'll never be democratic and he'll never renounce radical Islamism.

Brooks adds:
World events of the past few months have vindicated those who take the substance side of the argument. It has become clear — in Egypt, Turkey, Iran, Gaza and elsewhere — that radical Islamists are incapable of running a modern government.
The only thing that remains to be seen is whether the other elements of the anti-Mubarak, anti-old-regime opposition can do that.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

The Islamist Wind in Britain

sharia-law1


First published on FrontPage Magazine.

By Enza Ferreri

Over the last weekend there have been two more street attacks on soldiers in Britain, one of which was fatal.

On Saturday, the Yorkshire town of Barnsley in northern England honored soldiers with parades and celebrations for its Armed Forces Day. One of the soldiers, who had returned from the Falkland Islands just hours before, was brutally assaulted at around midnight when he was getting home. He was jumped from behind, knocked unconscious and then repeatedly stamped and kicked in the head and face, and left with a concussion, injuries and bruises.

He is a 28-year-old corporal who has served in Afghanistan and Iraq.

In the early hours of Sunday morning, 26-year-old newlywed ex-soldier David Ryding was attacked in the Warwickshire town of Rugby, in central England, suffering head injuries. He died in hospital almost 24 hours later. Three men have been arrested.

What is missing from these reports? Any information about the suspects, except their ages. The word “Muslim,” which, in view of the beheading of Drummer Lee Rigby by self-confessed jihadists, may spring to mind, is notably absent, and can only be found in the comments to the articles. Also noteworthy is that these incidents were only reported in local news.

Readers, judging by their comments, are suspicious of the media’s suppression of information: “If this were an attack by whites on a muslim it would be on BBC news, lead story – fact.” Another: “I bet it was Muslims who attacked him, but the media have left this part out because of community tensions.”

And:
It might be a random attack but the total lack of info in the rest of the media is pretty weird. After Drummer Rigby you’d think any incident with a soldier attacked the media would want to make sure everybody knew it wasn’t a jihadist attack if it wasn’t but this – total silence.
The media may or may not know more about the identities and religious affiliations of the suspects. But it is their reluctance to even mention the elephant in the room, the self-evident similarity with the previous, recent street killing of a soldier, that makes such coverage suspicious and, frankly, surreal.
The common excuse for this kind of censorship is the wish to avoid indirectly inciting anti-Muslim attacks, that have increased since Lee Rigby’s murder.

A noble intention, I’m sure. It’s a pity that these same media outlets don’t take the same prudential attitude when it comes to trumpeting, say, how “Islamophobic” the British government has allegedly been in its unjust wars against Islam in Iraq and Afghanistan, or how racist the UK police and public allegedly are. In those cases the media don’t seem to be so concerned about possible “backlashes” against non-Muslims or whites.

Nor is the mainstream media worried about having in the UK such a large, non-assimilated immigrant population from alien cultures (one of which, Islamic culture, could hardly be more antithetical to British and, indeed, Western civilization), which may at any moment instigate serious, even lethal, conflicts.

There is an increasing polarization between Britons and Muslims. A recent opinion poll compared answers given by respondents in November 2012 with late May 2013.

In 2012, 50 percent agreed that “There will be a ‘clash of civilizations’ between British Muslims and native white Britons”; in 2013, 59 percent did.

The number of those who agreed with “British Muslims pose a serious threat to democracy” rose from 30 to 34 percent.

In short, it’s not just the “far-right”  that is “Islamophobic” now in the UK.

Terrorism is not the only problem by any stretch of the imagination. The Brits are not too impressed by the Muslim pedophile rings which have become an epidemic, or the way mosques disrupt their own neighbourhoods — through parking jihad, general harassment, vandalism, etc. — and drive them to move out, or the de facto imposition of sharia law on them by the selling and serving of halal meat to unsuspecting non-Muslims.

The response of the Establishment to this rise in anti-Muslim feelings has been more of the same with a vengeance, intensifying, if anything, repression of the politically incorrect.

Following the Woolwich beheading, there has been a crackdown on several social network users who have been warned, charged, arrested and released on bail for making “inflammatory” and anti-Muslim comments on Twitter and Facebook. The police said people should be careful about what they write on Twitter as the “consequences could be serious.”

Two of the men detained were organising an anti-Islam protest in Bristol and made racist and “anti-religious” remarks. Anti-religious: I wonder if they would have been arrested for insulting Christianity?

Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller are now considered by the British Home Secretary to be public enemies, holders of opinions that are “not conducive to the public good,” and banned from even entering the country.

The English Defence League (EDL), an organization demonized under normal circumstances for daring to fight against the Islamization of Britain, has been more than ever targeted by authorities.
Two of its leaders, Tommy Robinson and Kevin Carroll, have been arrested practically for attempting to walk too close to a mosque, although the official excuse was “for obstructing the police.”

The media, predictably, are doing their bit. The usual suspects, like The Guardian, RT and Sky News, are doing their best to create an association in the mind of the public between EDL peaceful demonstrations, a lawful expression of free speech, and attacks on mosques or Muslims, which are criminal acts.

Channel 4, one of the UK’s major TV networks, has gone even further. It has announced that it’s going to broadcast the Islamic call to prayer throughout Ramadan, which began Tuesday, 9 July.
Channel 4’s head of factual programming, Ralph Lee, has excellent reasons for doing so. He said:
And let’s not forget that Islam is one of the few religions that’s flourishing, actually increasing in the UK. Like Channel 4’s target audience, its followers are young. It’s recently been reported that half of British Muslims are under 25.
That nice bit of demographic information will cheer us all up, Ralph. He added that the broadcasting is “a deliberate ‘provocation’ to all our viewers in the very real sense of the word.” We are all grateful for that.

Unsurprisingly, Islamist preachers like Anjem Choudary and Abu Zakariyya applaud his decision as a step towards the implementation of sharia law in the UK.

Choudary ventured a prediction: “[B]y some accounts Britain could be a Muslim country by 2015.”
Not so fast. Hubris could be your downfall, Anjem. We may still have something to say on the matter.


Friday, 12 July 2013

Why There Are No Christian Terrorists

The Religious Equivalency Fallacy


Ralph Sidway on Raymond Ibrahim's site explains the difference between Islamic fundamentalists and Christian fundamentalists. These are some excerpts from The Religious Equivalency Fallacy:
I personally know many fundamentalist Christians who exemplify qualities of charity, generosity, kindness, peacefulness, and with their lives refute the various caricatures that have become attached to the word fundamentalist. That they base their faith on the fundamentals of the Christian kerygma is to their credit, when so many “nuancey” Christians seem to get it all muddled up and one can’t tell if they really stand for something, or if they’re liable to fall for anything.

Interestingly, in Orthodox Christianity, one does not really see fundamentalism so much as what the New Testament calls “zeal not according to knowledge” (Romans 10:2). That is to say, that Orthodoxy is so rich and varied with its many sources of tradition — Scripture, oral tradition, early church writers, worship, liturgical texts, Church councils, canon law, iconography — that the term fundamentalist does not comprehensively describe the phenomenon of one who is somehow getting worked up over issues of observance and correctness.

Thus, in the Orthodox Church we sometimes speak of the “crazy convert” syndrome, or the “correctness disease,” where strictness of observance and proper fulfillment of the externals of Christian life become the focus, to the point of judging others, and ultimately to the exclusion of basic Christian virtues of warmth of heart, forgiveness, and charity towards one’s neighbor. In Biblical terms, this can also be termed Pharisaism, holding to the letter of the law while denying the heart of it. (This is much of what Jesus Christ warned against, and to this day this wrong-headed attitude turns people off to Christianity.)...

For a Christian, “zeal not according to knowledge” is a passion, a sickness of the soul to be rooted out...

As visually hinted in the comparison photo at top, the most “extreme” form of Orthodox Christian “fundamentalism” — both interior and in rejection of the world — is monasticism. The most common form of Christian monasticism is cenobitic, in which monks or nuns live in a community, under vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, in order to live out the Gospel teachings of Christ as fully as possible, and to strive to know God through unceasing prayer. Stillness, even in the midst of activity (and monastics work hard, with daily chores, or “obediences” assigned for the upkeep and provision of the monastery’s needs) is foundational; one will often see at a monastery little signs reminding one of the rule: “Prayer — Work — Silence.”...

Muslim apologists in the United States seek to convince non-Muslims that jihad merely means an interior struggle, and that the term has been hijacked by Al Qaeda and other Islamic terrorist groups. They often cite a hadith in which Muhammad, after returning from battle, said “We have returned from the lesser jihad to the greater jihad.” When his followers asked him “What is the greater jihad?” he replied “The jihad of the heart, the jihad against one’s ego.”

Yet, in Islamic jurisprudence, the hadith supporting this statement is not considered a sound hadith and is rejected by such authorities as the 14th century classical Muslim scholar Ibn Taymiyya, and significantly also by Hassan al-Banna, founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, and by Abdullah Azzam, co-founder of Al Qaeda and mentor of Osama bin Laden. The understanding of warfare against infidels as the “higher jihad” is codified in The Reliance of the Traveller, the Shafi’i manual certified by the highest authority in Sunni Islam, Al Azhar University in Cairo, which states:
Jihad means to war against non-Muslims, and is etymologically derived from the word mujahada signifying warfare to establish the religion.

The scriptural basis for jihad, prior to scholarly consensus (def: b7) is such Koranic verses as:

“Fighting is prescribed for you” (Koran 2:216); “Slay them wherever you find them” (Koran 4:89); “Fight the idolators utterly” (Koran 9:36);

and such hadiths as the one related by Bukhari and Muslim that the Prophet said:

“I have been commanded to fight people until they testify that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and perform the prayer, and pay zakat. If they say it, they have saved their blood and possessions from me, except for the rights of Islam over them. And their final reckoning is with Allah”;

and the hadith reported by Muslim,

“To go forth in the morning or evening to fight in the path of Allah is better than the whole world and everything in it.” (Reliance of the Traveller, o9.0, o9.1, o9.8, o9.9)
Indeed, seen in the light of traditional, mainstream Islamic teaching, and understood in the context of Islam’s history of jihad warfare against non-Muslims, the inner jihad is a devout Muslim’s pious preparation for the external jihad of war against non-Muslims.

Regarding this pious preparation, Nicolai Sennels writes:
Both the Quran and Muhammed… mentions several times how important it is for Muslims to be willing to give up everything, even their lives, in order to wage jihad for Allah…

Greater jihad is thus an inner psychological process of removing emotional obstacles, such as the survival instinct and the natural biological attachment to offspring, spouses and a safe and comfortable dwelling, making the believer ready and willing to submit and give up every personal desire and attachment to spread Islam.

The greater jihad, the mental replacement of personal desires with an absolute loyalty towards Allah and his prophet and laws, is aided by what could be called the cultural psychological spine of Islamic culture: the recitation of the Islamic scriptures (some even learn the whole Quran by heart), expressions of loyalty through prayer five times a day by repeating the salah (“O Allah, how perfect You are and praise be to You. Blessed is Your name, and exalted is Your majesty. There is no god but You.”), and the well-known and severe religious and social control that ensure the rule of Sharia in Muslim societies…

Seen from a psychological perspective, the greater jihad is nothing but self-radicalisation — an inner holy war of brainwashing oneself that is deeply ingrained in Islamic tradition — to go against human nature, which includes basic survival instincts and the natural aversion — also among animals — to the killing of members of one’s own species.
Thus, according to canonical, legitimate Islamic sources, the inner jihad is meant to prepare the true Muslim for the external jihad of warfare against non-Muslims. This is the whole purpose of devotion, piety, zeal and the interior struggle, as the Muslim follows the teachings and example of Muhammad. Muslim terrorists are revered in the Islamic world as Mujahideen, “strugglers,” or more literally, “people doing jihad.”


Peaceful Jihad?

Before concluding, we must address the notion that the Sufi tradition is an example of a more mystical, peaceful form of Islam, the better to be compared with Orthodox Christian monasticism. For many Western writers, the Sufi strain seems like a ray of hope, holding potential for reform within Islam. Is Sufism mystical? Yes, but peaceful? Not so much. In fact, as Andrew Bostom shows in his exhaustively researched 2005 article Sufi Jihad?, Sufism is just as committed to Islamic supremacism and jihad as the most extreme Wahhabist or Salafist sects:
Throughout the 20th century, and at present, Sufi ideologues and mass movements (especially the Naqshbandiya) have been engaged in defensive—offensive jihad campaigns designed not only to expel real (or perceived) ‘colonial powers’, but also to create supra—national (regional) shari’a states, or even a frank Caliphate (i.e., a single unified global shari’a state). The restored Shi’ite theocracy in Iran, whose contemporary shari’a—based system of dhimmitude was drafted by a leading Sufi—Sultanhussein Tabandeh—provides a sobering example of what ‘Sufi ecumenism’ towards non—Muslims means in practice.

Why No Podvig Terror Attacks?

So, turning back to Orthodoxy, which has a lively and vigorous tradition of interior struggle, why is it we never once hear of a podvig [“ascetic spiritual struggle” in Orthodox Christian theology] terror attack? This is an especially relevant question, as the demographics are so similar; there are almost exactly the same number of Orthodox Christians in the United States as Muslims, and many of each group consider themselves members of a “diaspora”: Russian, Greek, Serbian, Lebanese, Syrian, Coptic Orthodox —Somali, Syrian, Egyptian, Iraqi, Iranian, Saudi Arabian, Indonesian Muslims.

Even when bishops of the Orthodox Church call for “podvig” against the corrupting influences of the contemporary world, we never see that manifested in attacks against people or property. We see it through increased prayer, fasting, charity, kindness, as Christian strugglers internalize the teachings and example of Jesus.

Nor out of geo-political motivations do we see podvig terrorist attacks.

Even though President Bill Clinton led the United States into war against the Serbians (an Orthodox Christian people), siding with the Bosnian Muslims during the Yugoslav war, we do not see Serbs or other Slavic sympathizers waging podvig on American streets with suicide vests, cleavers and guns. And we certainly do not see sedition being preached against the United States in Serbian Orthodox Churches in America (compared to four separate studies over the last decade which reveal that 80% of mosques in America preach violent jihad and Islamic supremacism).

Instead, it is axiomatic that as an Orthodox Christian grows in piety and zeal according to knowledge, the more peace-filled they should become. One of the most beloved saints of the Church, Seraphim of Sarov, condensed this teaching down to the following saying:

“Acquire the Spirit of Peace, and a thousand will be saved around you.”

It should be clear that in Orthodox Christianity, the 2,000 year tradition of inner ascetical struggle — podvig in Russian — has as its goal deliverance and purification from the passions, so that one can ascend to illumination, and eventually to union (theosis) with God. There is no double-speak in Christianity, beguiling outsiders with platitudes about “inner struggle” while preparing believers through that very inner struggle to wage harsh warfare against the unsuspecting infidels. Individual Christian believers may have challenges due to “zeal not according to knowledge,” but the goal is to be healed of such ailments.

Conversely, as a devout Muslim grows in knowledge of his faith, the more he realizes he is called to wage jihad. Proper zeal, and worship pleasing to Allah —“Zeal according to knowledge” — for a Muslim means joining the ranks of the Mujahideen. In contrast to the saying of St Seraphim of Sarov, a zealous Muslim might use these words cited above from The Reliance of the Traveller:

"To go forth in the morning or evening to fight in the path of Allah is better than the whole world and everything in it." (Hadith from Sahih Muslim)

“Fight the idolators utterly.” (Koran 9:36)


Defilement or Honor?

Now, let’s look again at the one line refutation of the “religious equivalency fallacy”:
They [Christian and Muslim fundamentalists] certainly both defile their religion, but one group becomes intolerant and arrogant, the other intolerant and violent.
Although this is a clever spontaneous rejoinder to purveyors of the religious equivalency myth, I think we have seen that zealous Muslims, the Mujahideen, do not defile their religion at all. Rather, by waging jihad they honor the teachings of their religion and their prophet in the most fervent, traditional, way.

We ought never hear of a Podvig Terror Attack, whereas, tragically, we will continue to see multiplied before our eyes ever more Jihad Terror Attacks, especially as Islam’s Rule of Numbers is borne out in Europe, the U.K and the United States, and zealous Muslims feel ever more emboldened and compelled to openly honor the actual teachings and commands of their prophet and their religion.