Saturday, June 28, 2008

Be Honest and Stop Trying to call it Capitalism

I'’m not sure why telephone and ISP subscribers need to pay for state television production, but that’s how the usual feeble logic goes in post reason EUtopia when they’re flogging another tax.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy proposed a new tax on profits of Internet providers and telephone companies Wednesday to finance the end of advertising on public television and radio.

Sarkozy confirmed a timetable for phasing out advertising on public stations starting next January. Ads would be gone completely by 2011.

He said a new tax of 0.9 percent should be imposed on profits of Internet providers and telecom operators to compensate state coffers for the estimated €650 million (US$1.3 billion) annual loss in advertising revenue.
The measure dissociates revenue with costs, charges the private sector for a business unnecessarily occupied by government, and contributes to the longstanding feeling of being “pecked to death”. As it is, French TV owners pay an “annual user fee” to watch television, which is an additional cost to view non-government produced TV because one must pay it to have anything other than an old black and white set.
Staff members at public radio and television stations staged a strike earlier this year against the plan.

Critics of Sarkozy's shakeup say he is handing a present to private channels. Shares in leading private channel TF1 soared after Sarkozy's January announcement, and climbed 5.9 percent to €11.11 (US$17.33) on Wednesday.
The private operations, intertwined in the massive foreign satellite provider operation business too, advertise anyway, and permits the state corporate umbrella operator to derive revenue from this as well, not to mention corporate taxes and the subsidizing of the satellites' construction and launch themselves. In other words, there’s money everywhere charged in however many unrelated ways to the use as it is, and here we see people wanting to make it even more complicated.

Moreover, like all of these minor forms of usury, the general population restructures itself to cheat it, further disconnecting the tax from the purpose. The common practice of “taking Grandma with you” when you buy a television is the simplest way to get a discounted form of relief set aside for senior citizens by having them place the purchase for you.

Curiously, in a nation where nationalization is seen as a virtue:
Staff members at public radio and television stations staged a strike earlier this year against the plan.
This probably has to do with the fact that the suspicion is that there will be less money in it for them if this went through, but contradicts another view that in an environment where one wouldn’t really want to respond to public demand, revenue would otherwise drop.
Société Télévision Française 1 and M6-Metropole Télévision, the largest commercial broadcasters in France, may benefit from increased ad spending as a result of the change. TF1 shares rose the most in almost six weeks, while M6 had the biggest gain in three weeks.
Either that or they were striking against the man, just onb princip... (nah). What I doubt is that the strikers prefer the benefits of a freer market environment since freelancers and subcontractors share work with the private sector.

Is your head spinning? It should, because that’s how societies managed heavily by government always seem to turn out.

Next stop is Pamyat Headquarters

What do you call a train man who steps on a live 3rd rail?
A conducter!
Don’t pop your rocks all at once there people, but it really is starting to sound like someone is going to call for a 5th International and we’ll sing special songs when we dig potatoes (led by the strong voice of the Cadres, of course.) The EU has buffaloed Thalys into decorating one of their overpriced, fancy-schmancy über-speed trains for... wait for it...
the logo of the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue !!!!
I know this is exciting, but try to contain yourselves. Hey! You back there! Quit playing with your Johnson!

I say put him on the Stand!

Isn't it every trial attorney's wet dream to put a trained chimpanzee as a witness?

The country's supreme court has upheld a lower court ruling which rejected the activists' request to have a trustee appointed for Matthew.

So now 36-year-old Miss Stibbe and the Vienna-based Association Against Animal Factories have filed an appeal with the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

Matthew, by the way, is a chimpanzee.
Organisers could set up a foundation to collect cash for Matthew, whose life expectancy in captivity is about 60 years.
Or they could buy the mangy creature and promise not to fit him for a tuxedo, but I don't think that the actual welfare of the animal is what they're really concerned with. What this looks like is a stunt plaintiff making a philosophical argument that people, being the rutting and eating stupid beasts that they are are no different that any other simian that we'd like to think have complex emotions and might eventually manage to accomplish something with a typewriter, if only enough of these drips "cared" about them.
But they argue that only personhood would ensure he is not sold to someone outside Austria, where he is protected by strict animal cruelty laws.
In dismissing the activists' request to get a guardian for Matthew, a lower court ruled that the chimp was neither mentally impaired nor in danger - the legal grounds required for a guardian to be appointed.
Not the varied use of “it” and “he”, “person” and “human” in this stunning ontological dialog!

But the biggest fallacy is this unexamined assumption:
Miss Stibbe, who is from Brighton but has lived in Vienna for several years, says she is not trying to get the chimp declared a human, just a person.

'Everybody who knows him personally will see him as a person,' she said.
Exactly - It the humans embedding meaning in this and conferring human qualities on him based on a chimp's manners reminding us of human affectations. Yet even though the worst the possible outcome of this 'crisis' is that the local equivalent of the SPCA or a government department whose competence is wildlife would sort out where this animal will collect his social security, “justice” (for the feelings of the well meaning) marches on.

After all, get a load of this zoophilic reader comment. It's rather telling in that it confers acceptance of the idea that a chimp is as much a person as a human. Like many philosophically dubious causes, it's just a matter of strange, lonely people forcing their emotional problems on a newly discovered brand of victim:
I wish them all the very best of luck - given what supposed human beings do to each other on a daily basis, I'd far rather give human rights to chimps and other great apes who are infinitely superior to all those inhuman 'humans' who blight society, and certainly wouldn't shame us all the same way.
This is an awful lot like the socially minded parents who try to get their daughters to play with truck, and their sons to play with Barbies – it's about the big chimp, not the little one trying to impose their feelings on a helpless subject.

- Hat tip: George in Baghdad. Bless you for finding this dreck.

Pot Calls Kettle Black

EU to the Irish: Keep voting until you produce the desire results.
ZANU-PF to Zimbabweans: Keep voting until you produce the desire results.

Here’s the money quote:

"some African countries have done worse things."

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Piss Christ Culture meets the 7th Century

Monday afternoon in room 322 at the Saint Vincent de Paul clinic in Bourgoin-Jallieu at 17h 30 a shout echoed in the room where a girl was being hospitalized. Before the medical staff did their care on the girl (whose father is a Muslim) who underwent scheduled surgery that morning demanded the removal of the crucifix hung on the wall.

"For nearly a quarter of an hour the father in the presence of his wife was irately demanding that the crucifix be removed," said a witness. While the nurse uses diplomacy to appease them, the crucifix was finally removed from the wall, in the interest of providing calm for the child.
"When people choose to be cared for in our establishment, they do so knowingly. They know they are in a Catholic clinic. It’s not hidden. It’s inscribed at the entrance of the institution.


"Each room is equipped with a crucifix. Small in size and not ostentatious, but very simple."
But in the primitive land of class warfare, don’t you dare try that with the Hand of Fatima, of the mass expression of “calling for tolerance” will be overwhelm your senses.
We are occasionally faced with this type of situation in each of our institutions," explained Sister Marie-Mathieu, president of the board of directors. The [ethics] committee meets several times a year brings together religious leaders, civic figures, philosophers, lawyers, but also representatives of the medical corps of each establishment.
At the latest meeting something that happened several months earlier was brought to its attention. In an institution in Aix-en-Provence, a father broke a crucifix and then threw in the trash. That action was not tolerated.

"Why did you choose our school, while the family was apparently allergic to religious symbols?" the staff asked while denouncing a drift of a society less and less respectful of one's faith. "We welcome very regularly Muslim women, veiled, and everything goes normally," noted the director.
Regretting the incident, Sister Marie-Mathieu believes it goes against the foundations of the institution: mutual respect. "The clinic welcomes and respects each one with his religious beliefs. Our desire is the desire of universal communion."
It seem the “universal” part of anything is what these crucifix-ated fathers have a problem with.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

The European Left: Crash Testing Humanity for More than a Century

The aptly named “Eco-Communist” IU-ICV part of Spain has succeeded in making itself some new voters:

The move is the first time any national legislature has called for rights for non-humans.

The parliament’s environmental committee approved the resolution, which calls on Spain to comply with the Great Apes Project. The initiative, originated by philosophers Peter Singer and Paola Cavalieri in 1993, promotes the position that "non-human hominids" such as gorillas, chimpanzees, orangutans and bonobos should enjoy comparable rights as humans, including the right to life, freedom and not to be tortured. The philosophers believe the apes are our closest genetic relatives.

"This is a historic day in the struggle for animal rights and in defense of our evolutionary comrades, which will doubtless go down in the history of humanity," Pedro Pozas, Spanish director of the Great Apes Project, told Reuters.
Now, in fact, they can have so many of the rights that humans have, that they too can be reduced to being thought of as “just a clump of cells”, and will be trying to force the idea on the rest of the human warehouse.

They Must be Talking about the US Ryder Cup Team

Spiegel is so cute when they blow a gasket:

Did neo-cons from the United States fund the campaign in Ireland to reject the Lisbon Treaty? Accusations to that effect are widespread -- particularly given the business contacts of a leading group in the "no" camp. 

The words were clear: "Europe has powerful enemies on the other side of the Atlantic, gifted with considerable financial means." The speaker was France's Europe Minister Jean-Pierre Jouyet, addressing a pro-European rally in Lyon at the weekend. He was putting the blame for the Irish rejection of the Lisbon Treaty on some surprising shoulders: neoconservatives in the United States. "The role of the American neocons was very important in the victory of the 'no,'" he said.

A voice of paranoia from old Europe? Perhaps. But the allegations are not exactly new. Those campaigning for a "yes" vote in the Irish referendum on June 12 had made similar suggestions in the run up to the vote." 
Which is hugely absurd. Between non-Europeans who still want that one-phone-number and the ones who love the idea of Europe uniting itself to become non- competitively cobbled by pan-EUtopian social and techno-phobic legislation, I can’t imagine “those evil neocons”, shoeless and toothless dimwits as we all just know they are to oppose the EU actually becoming a nation and taking up some responsibilities once and for all.

How Dick Cheney managed to use mind control over 850k irish voter, of course, goes unexplained, but you know that Dick. You just don’t HAVE to explain. What comes as no surprise is that there are people in the divine continent given to Chavez-like periodic accusations of their imaginary enemy in order to flag their implausible view of their own infallibility. The very idea that any American Conservative would buy the veracity of the loony Irish notion that they were really neutral in the 20th century is even more laughable.

- Vielen Dank, 2BrixShy

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Slightly Less Interesting Than Pepto-Bismol

The EU realizes that the only way anyone will “believe in it” is if they buffalo people with propaganda advertising. From the unctuous, state-run Euractiv :

Consumer policy is moving up the European Commission's agenda as the EU becomes increasingly concerned about its popularity level among citizens.
Criticism that the EU is cut off from the concerns of its citizens led Communications Commissioner Margot Wallström to launch a 'Communicate Europe in partnership' initiative in October 2007, which seeks to foster greater cooperation between EU institutions and national governments in communicating EU policies. 

Boosting popular support for the European project is also seen as critical to reversing the steady decline in voter turnout in the run-up to the European Parliament elections in June 2009.
Off to a great start, nay? You realize that they’re trying to call their obligation to listening to citizens to be something like listening to customers. It comes with the same baggage that the social welfare system will call a juvenile delinquent a “client”.

Where is there Never a Damn Treehugger Around When you Need One?

Next time you hear a French person getting sentimental about their loony delusions and “their GI’s”, consider this.

Oh Maya

Behold our “betters”:

Thousands of people in the Netherlands say they expect the world to end in 2012, and many say they are taking precautions to prepare for the apocalypse.
Which brings to mind other contemporary obsessions with the apocalypse, one where constantly staying off-kilter and never ending behaviour modification might might permit one to be slightly less guilt-laden. For now.
"You know, maybe it's really not that bad that the Netherlands will be destroyed," Petra Faile said. "I don't like it here anymore. Take immigration, for example. They keep letting people in. And then we have to build more houses, which makes the Netherlands even heavier. The country will sink even lower, which will make the flooding worse."
Besides, if the world is ending, why are they hoarding stuff and “preparing” for something?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Europe’s Obamazombies Having a Hard Time with their own Paraodox

Andrei Markovits and Jeff Weintraub, writing in the Huff-Po plausit quite simply why it is that Europeans are so GObama when in fact:

All very heartwarming. But having followed the European media with some care since my arrival in Vienna on June 1, I have seen very little acknowledgement of one inconvenient complicating reality. Obama, or someone with Obama's social background and political style, would have a hard time getting elected dog-catcher in any of these European countries,
Nonetheless, there is something puzzling about the euphoria shared with the fringe left in America: the strange willingness to idolize and fetishize a political figure, to lionize and make heroic government and the state, when they just spent the past 8 years trying to convince the world that a much less emotionally needy and less intervention-minded POTUS had been guilty of so many things that he could be compared to Hitler, Pol Pot, and Stalin, all of who, by the way, were leftists whose goal was to channel in it’s entirely the state the ruling of society, the individual, and create a monoculture ruled by a clenched fist in an iron glove. Promoters of “diversity”, the thing we celebrate because it just is may want to reconsider their apparent blind fealty to any mortal being and go back to their animist worship of Gaia until they can consolidate the disparate features of that paradox of their own.

But back on the benighted continent of the wise and divine, no such trust of “the other” is even remotely possible. In the absence of having much of a platform, and with little airing of it in EUtopia, their attraction to Obama is one of imagery and perhaps the hope that he’ll handicap the thing competing with their hubristic pride as the imagined sages of humanity. It may have more to do with a humger they have for their own devilling distrust of “the other” that they hope this passive aspiration of theirs will somehow cure with neither substantive words nor action.
In France (depending on how the calculations are done) roughly ten per cent of the population are of Arab or sub-Saharan African origin. But the 577 members of the Chamber of Deputies do not include a single person of color. The German Bundestag has a few members of Turkish origin, but their numbers are minimal and none of them plays a prominent role (as compared with some heavyweight African-American, Cuban-American, and Mexican-American Congresspeople and Governors in the US). And so on. One can find isolated exceptions here and there (Ayaan Hirsi Ali in the Netherlands, for example, before she had to flee the country?), but the point is that they're isolated exceptions.

Nor is this just a question of race (and racism). In comparison with the US, European societies have more ethnically restricted and exclusionary conceptions of full citizenship and of political community that make it difficult for outsiders of all kinds to succeed politically. Consider who is Governor of the largest and most important US state, California -- the Austrian-American immigrant Arnold Schwarzenegger. Is it even conceivable that a foreign-born immigrant with a funny foreign-sounding name and a heavy funny-sounding foreign accent could be elected Prime Minister of the most important German Land, North Rhine-Westphalia? (You don't have to guess -- the answer is no.) And ditto for Italy, Britain, France, and the rest.

(Frankly, it's hard to imagine someone with Schwarzenegger's career profile getting himself elected to an important political office even in his native Austria -- which may or may not be a good thing, depending on your perspective.)
Further, the likes of the late Tom Lantos, a holocaust survivor from Hungary managed to serve in Congress, in spite of this society that Europeans generally try to convince one is horribly racist. The list goes on and on, but the implication is clear: they don’t want “someone that appeals to them” in the White House, they want someone that they think would not appeal to their imagined notion of America in the White House.

One thing is clear. Europeans can’t vote here, and for the most part their own votes at home under party-lists of people they don’t get to nominate, elections that are repeated until the desired results are achieved, etc., don’t amount to much either.

In the face of their “friendly advice” which is at best an ongoing series passive-aggressive emotional terrorism attempts, they need to start by not lecturing the rest of humanity and get a grip on their own feeble distrust of their own populations.

Our Effete Sophisticated Friends, Part 291

Some fool working for an educational support and tutoring company in the Netherlands searching in French for that all-powerful, mysterious “Jewish lobby”. No surprise there.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Oil Fuels War!

Chavez threatens to cut off oil shipments and nationalize European assets to the EU if they deport illegal immigrants from Latin America. The only problem is that most of Venezuela’s oil can only be refined in the US, and European investors were intelligent enough not to leave much of anything within the reach of that buffoon.

Le Parisien picks up on an item bouncing around the Francophone blogosphere for about a week now:

An eye for an eye. In the same way that European countries decide to return undocumented immigrants to their countries of origin, countries of Latin America can decide on their side "the return of European investments," Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez threatened during a press conference.

The symbolic gesture seems, however: according to the latest figures available from the European Commission, the share of Venezuelan oil in all oil imports from the European Union accounted for only 0.9% in 2005.
Thankfully, not everyone suffers from the Zapatero paradox.

The Art of the Carbeque

Clarsonimus points out the European need to find aesthetics snobbery, even in violence. Of course it’s just a way of salving ones’ feelings when things are hopeless. After all, you can try to change your attitude all you like, and Kreuzberg still sucks.

Disco? Ça bouge encore?

Jew baiting beating in Paris

Not to worry. Everyone is behaving splendidly. The situation is under control.

Jews in Paris? We haven't seen any that we can recall. Funny that. It's as if they had all vanished. Oh, not to worry. Pass the sauerkraut darling.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Postcards from Pétainistan

That’s no exaggeration. There are organized mobs or wastrels seeking strawmen to physically abuse in order to act out there hatred of demonized nations and cultures.

The violent assault of a young Jewish man, Saturday evening in Paris led to a thunderous outrage in the Jewish community at the Elysée and the government. The 17-year-old boy was beaten in public on Saturday around 8 pm Buttes-Chaumont, in the nineteenth arrondissement.

According to the National Office of Vigilance against anti-Semitism (BNVCA), the young man "was attacked with an steel bar by a group of "6 or 7" youths.
Five minors from that district and the Seine-Saint-Denis area were arrested and remanded in custody. The investigation was entrusted to Usit (Support Unit and territorial investigation) of the Metropolitan police nearby.

According to Public Assistance-Hospitals of Paris (AP-HP), the status of the victim is "stable" and his prognosis remains inconclusive.

For his father, interviewed by RTL, the young man was attacked "because he was wearing a kippa and is Jewish." Similarly, for UEJF and CRIF, the anti-Semitic nature of this attack is not in doubt. "The young man of 17 years age was brutally attacked last night, is currently in a coma, was wearing a kippa, and there is no doubt that this is an anti-Semitic act," said Ariel Goldmann , Vice-president of CRIF.

Through its chairman, Raphael Haddad, UEJF said he was "very concerned" by repeated fights in recent weeks between organized gangs, including in the Parc des Buttes Chaumont area.
There is no tangible motive in these attacks other than that of simple, mindless, irrational hatred. That the young man was not a “settler” in Israel should actually buoy the attackers’ world view, but that clearly isn’t the point. To the young attackers with their world view trained into them, the mere existence of something representing their enemy.

Even the comments to the article in Le Figaro reflecting outrage show us what kind of “brave new world” we’re living in. Many of those wanting to discuss this kind of criminality have to first qualify their opinions with a statement making sure that everyone knows that they “aren’t a Zionist”. Nonetheless, I found this one amusing:
Vive la France! Country of human rights and especially of giving lessons that are ignored and comments only on what suits them.
No doubt, we’ll also have comments here from the usual drive-by shooters who think beating a 17 year old into a coma is heroic. It’s rather that these sad and confused would do better not to conflate a teenager walking down the street with the usual “enlightened” lectures about how he’s no different than an Israeli soldier in the West Bank. Were they only to have that same form of moral equivalence used against them, instead of having their free speech rights defended, one might find them worthy of some passing attention.

Duck and Cover!

When it Comes to Al-Dura, Journalists Are Against Free Speech, writes John Rosenthal in Pajamas Media. French journalists falsifies story. French media supports liar, sues party trying to keep them honest. First court rules in favor of the best connected.

It is this insight — an insight that one would expect to be entirely banal in a democratic society — that underlies the higher court’s ruling. The court did not find that the fraudulence of the Al-Dura report had been “proven,” but it found that Karsenty offered sufficient and sufficiently serious grounds for the claim of fraudulence to make it a legitimate matter of public debate.

To have ruled otherwise — as the lower court did in its original ruling — would be, in effect, to institute a sort of crime of lèse majesté protecting journalists and news organizations from criticism: placing them above society and the mere “lay persons” who are then supposed to accept the claims of the “news professionals” without question. Le Nouvel Observateur’s “Appeal for Charles Enderlin” positively exudes such a sense of corporate privilege, as Richard Landes and his commentators on Augean Stables were quick to point out.
And of free speech:
It is on account of this massive funding by France and the European institutions that I have suggested that RSF be referred to not as a “non-governmental organization” (NGO), but rather as a “para-governmental organization”: a “PGO” whose supposedly objective assessments of the situation of press freedoms around the world are in fact largely and obviously influenced by the political agendas of its principal state sponsors. (See part II of my exposé here.)

Robert Ménard’s attitude to the Al-Dura affair is just further confirmation of the “PGO” status of Reporters Without Borders. By breaking his silence and signing the Nouvel Observateur “Appeal,” Ménard has now explicitly come out in favor of suppressing Philippe Karsenty’s right to criticize Enderlin and France 2. He has thereby pulled off the remarkable feat of outing himself and the “press freedoms” organization he heads as, in effect, enemies of free speech.
It’s just another day in paradise.

NGO complains about lack of Imperious Control over Government Funds


The organisation groups over 600 NGOs working to combat racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia in all 27 EU member states.

According to the Indian-born, Pakistani-raised Dane, if each country chooses to spend the EU money according to its own definition of 'intercultural dialogue', the targetted minorities stand little chance of being involved in dialogue with the majority communities.
In other words, he doesn’t want governments to spend the money their own moneys that they’re getting back from the EU in a manner that elected officials would with anything else – with at least SOME semblance of a mandate from the public.

But since activists thrive and dine on propagating the belief that all people are wrong in the way they define it, unless they act on their wishes and buy them off, then these “enlightened” masses of tolerance and love übermenschen that is suppose to make Europeans better that and distinct to, for examble, Americans, Israelis, etc. (but not Robert Mugabe)...
"The commission should have said: 'By interculturalism we mean that majorities with all their resources and money interact with minorities who do not have those things'. Ask them [the minorities] what kind of activities they want in the 'intercultural dialogue' programme. Their picture is completely different from that of the governments," Mr Quraishy said.
...which used to be called redistribution. In this case, there are specific social features, almost entirely genetic, that qualify one for this new form of human equality.
The European year of intercultural dialogue has a budget of €10 million, plus money from EU capitals, to be spent on seven flagship multi-European projects and 27 national projects involving culture, education, youth, sport and citizenship.

It aims to encourage understanding, tolerance, solidarity and a sense of common destiny among people of all origins and cultures in Europe.
And they want to create this solidarity by chopping them up into smaller and smaller ethnic factions that think the world owes them something, as opposed to say, appealing to basic positive human values that they might (or should) have in common.

For all the self-congratulation and sneering at others, their “commitment” to these things seems like a feeble fig leaf at best. All €10 million really buys is a chance to get a good press story here and there, and the hope that a few European that aren’t bigoted and hateful can actually be found. It’s just enough to maintain a pretext, and a sort of blood-money payment to unelected organizations trying to commander government funds and use it to political ends.

Nothing new in EUtopia.