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Friday, 27 June 2014

Tarzan The Lifeguard

We forget how popular some activities were in the past. Swimming (or mixed bathing as it was sometimes known), was really an Edwardian invented activity, but still considered very daring in the 1920's and 1930's .... young men and women, for obvious reasons were particularly drawn to it as a 'racy' pastime. So much so, that some very swanky establishments were opened up in which they could take part.

Paris was not unnaturally the home of some of the best of these .... 'Gay Paree' wasn't a completely forgotten epoch, and so the bright young things of the Roaring 20's, and the less roaring 1930's, flocked to Paris as one of the great places to meet up, and be seen.

Weissmuller At The Molitor

So its perhaps no surprise that Johnny Weissmuller ... yes he of 'Tarzan' fame, was a life guard at the premier of the Paris swimming establishments ... Piscine Molitor. Once one of Paris's most fashionable public swimming pools, it was even fitted with Art Deco changing cubicles. Weissmuller had already won three gold medals at the 1924 Paris Olympics, and a further two at the Amsterdam Olympics in 1928, but he then stayed in Europe, and spent a summer season at the Molitor baths, giving swimming lessons and rescuing bathers in distress (of which one suspects, there quite a few, of both sexes), while he also trained using the pools rowing machines and punchballs, to such good affect, that he was offered the modelling role as Adonis, (wearing only a fig leaf), in a movie entitled Glorifying the American Girl in 1929.

Of course his real acting career only started in 1932, when he was signed up by MGM to play the role of Tarzan in Tarzan the Ape Man.

Tarzan The Lifeguard

There was one other historic moment to occur at the Molitor, which was a photo-shoot in July 1946, when the modern 'bikini' was revealed to the world for the first time, modelled by the one-time nude dancer, Micheline Bernardini - who is then said to have received more than 50,000 excited fan letters.

Micheline Bernardini - First Bikini

Still all that was too come, and it must have been something of a shock to those earlier patrons of the Molitor, when they later saw the 'American Lifeguard', appearing on the silent screen as 'Tarzan'. His period as a pool attendant must really rank high up there on the 'before they were famous' register.

You Can't Train Stupid

I always thought that it was only in the UK that major infrastructure cock ups could occur. After all, we tie everything down for years or decades, in an arcane and destructive planning process, so that often the development is out of date by the time its allowed, and developers either have to go ahead, even though its no longer really fit for purpose, or risk another decade in that same planning process submitting fresh plans.

2,000 Of These Put Britain To Shame

So it made me laugh to find that the French rail provider has just ordered 2,000 new trains, only to find that they are too big for the older rural platforms .... they are now having to spend millions of euro's to alter all the rural platforms to accommodate the new trains ... cue many red faces.

But in words that should resonate around the Conservative Party, French Transport Minister Frederic Cuvillier blamed an "absurd rail system" for the problems. "When you separate the rail operator from the train company," he said, "this is what happens."

Personally it was the realisation that in France, they can order 2,000 new trains that was the big news, while in the UK if we get 30 or 40 more new carriages, its declared a triumph for our rail system and privatisation.

Despite this cock up, France is of course decades ahead of us on affordable Public Transport ..... You got it wrong Tory Party.

Blairs Poisoned Legacy

The shock waves from the recent EU elections continues to shake surprises from the tree branches .... for instance Tony Blair, who was the architect of the open door immigration policy into the UK has spoken out .... by attacking the results of the recent EU MEP elections in the UK. 

In particular he has attacked the UK Independence Party (UKIP), and its supporters ...."You look underneath that UKIP façade and you see something pretty nasty and unpleasant", he said, and added that the EU and its structures should also "confront and expose" parties like UKIP. He then opined that the rationale for the EU was "probably stronger than it has ever been, in a world of growing economic superpowers such as China and India. You have got to take on people who, within countries, are arguing for a combination of anti-EU and anti-immigration policies which are not the answer".

Spoken like a true Federalist, and a man who handed over more UK sovereignty to others through his adoption of the human rights laws into our legal system, than any man in our history .... and a set of laws by the way, that has been exploited by more criminals, terrorists and legal aid human rights lawyer's, than ever by any honest person.

However if he hadn't secretly, and with no electoral mandate, opened the immigration floodgates, then these election results would likely never have occurred. In fact ex-prime minister Tony Blair is also one of the architects of the Scottish Nationalist Party's rise over the border, as well as the UKIP rise in England, and so could be classed as the reason why the UK is very close to a break up, and probably also to England leaving the European Union.

His world wide legacy is also noteworthy for its destructiveness.

So much so, that we can probably add to the legacy list, the complete destruction of the last Christian communities in the Middle East, from the Assyrian's in Iraq, to the Orthodox communities in Syria and the Catholics in Palestine, as the consequences of he and George 'dubya' Bush's campaigns on the multi-fronted war on terror, and the subsequent rise of the Islamic Jihadists, plays out across the Islamic world.

He has since (with his wife), racked up literally millions in consultancy fee's, derived principally from his holding former office, and now advising 'foreign governments on how to implement polices', or 'big business on regional political investment decisions' .... personally I wouldn't buy a used car from this man, let alone take his advice on anything. 

Mutually Assured (Self) Destruction

There are still many (including many members of his own party), who would also consider that he should be held accountable in the Court in the Hague, for his actions in office.

One Rule For Us and Another For Them

As we have seen with the reporting of the Richard Scudamore case, the Media, including the BBC, love to pontificate about anyone who doesn't toe the party line when it comes to any of the great untouchable 'ism's of our time (Racism, Sexism and Multiculturalism), which can be very broadly cast under the Politically Correct banner.

To that end they will join together and attack any individual who is a white male, and whose has had any sort of indiscretion exposed over these issues, in an effort to lose them their job and career, and as a warning example to all the rest of us, to keep our mouths shut and our heads down. Strangely these same media attack dogs are often more reticent when the males involved are not white .... so predatory, racially motivated, grooming of white girls in northern towns, was under reported for at least a decade in the mainstream media.

Similarly the very strange goings on inside Tower Hamlets council, a symptom of which was seen when the London Euro election results in 2014 couldn't fully be declared for several days, because that particular London borough was exhibiting some very strange counting procedural issues, are to say the least also very under reported*.

So when one of their own is caught breaking the rules, you would expect that they would swiftly turn on them wouldn't you?

Sadly, in what I can only declare to be no big surprise, a BBC News Editor on the rolling news channel named Jasmine Lawrence, was also operating a Twitter account under the pseudonym 'Journomummy' .... no problem but ....

She rather weakly tried to disassociate her job on BBC News from her views.

.... it was apparently was largely a re-tweeter vehicle of Labour Party official tweets, which is a bit of a no no during elections. She lives with her husband in a £475,000 house in Henley-upon-Thames, and joined the BBC in 2001, where has held a number of roles within the corporation including running its Westminster desk. She has described herself as being ‘ ... well versed in making decisions - frequently at speed. I have impeccable editorial judgement.’

But even so, why should anyone, let alone me, care about what a white, middle class, middle aged, member of the BBC news team, living in a very white area of London, and supporting the Labour Party, twitters? Well apart from the hypocrisy of her views about white males (considering her own background) .... she also took it upon herself to join in a Labour Party campaign to hijack the UKIP twitter trend #WhyImVotingUkip, which she did by posting the following:

During Elections BBC staff are meant to be neutral ... as well not being hypocrites

She is now hiding behind the BBC's opaque complaints procedures, where an internal 'review' is under way, and she has now deactivated her Twitter account ... obviously this was another 'impeccable editorial judgement'. And as, like the bodies it complains about, the BBC also doesn't make open any of its deliberations, we can expect it to just announce 'no action' at the end of a few weeks .... when the story is largely forgotten.

Visitor have found her Twitter account suddenly gone ... Oops

The leader of UKIP, Nigel Farage, told the press at the time that ‘For this senior figure in the BBC to show such prejudice when she works for the public service broadcaster is astonishing. If the BBC are serious about challenging bias she should be fired immediately.’  .... no chance.

Obviously, while the BBC is happy to present TV and Radio shows calling for 'White Middle Class males' to be sacked, or resign for overstepping one of the 'isms', its strangely inactive over the same events, when one of its own staff shows less than 'impeccable editorial judgement', and displays political bias during an election campaign, by trying to discredit a political party. So as a 'White Middle Class' female, she will not be sacked or asked to resign .... she will probably carry on with much the same editorial role, after just a quick 're-eduction' class in how to be more subtle when undermining non left-wing organisations.

Given all the issues over Scudamore, you would hope that the BBC would set an example, but in fact you can bet that there is 'One rule for us and another for them'.

*They were still counting council election votes more than three days after polls closed with accusations that police had failed to ensure that counting could take place without interference ..... this after a warning from the Electoral Commission that the borough was at “high risk” of suspected postal electoral fraud. The other factor was that reportedly there were “arguments, threats and chaos at the counting tables” this year, with supporters of Mr Rahman the current Mayor “challenging vote after vote”, and his media supporters free to come and go, while the count was in progress. The police are allegedly not enforcing the electoral laws, with accusations that because all this is being done by 'certain groups' they won't tackle them .... the council is run by a group consisting largely of Asian officials.

Friday, 20 June 2014

In The Libraries Bad Books

There are books that are no doubt worthy, but truth be known they are just not attractive reads, and would never stay in print if printings 'natural selection', sales, was allowed to makes its choices  .... but these dull but worthy tomes, often survive in print because they meet some socially 'special' criteria.

These could be that they are deemed as important nationally e.g. The works of Shakespeare, which I can't imagine are big sellers, and probably only survive in print because of sales to schools etc. Another factor is that they meet some criteria that the library system defines amongst its local authority administrators. 

Possibly one such book is "YOUNG FREDERICK DOUGLASS: The Slave Who Learned to Read" by Linda Walvoord Girard.

In The Libraries Bad Books

.... a book which has set some sort of record, by remaining untouched on the shelves for 17 years in a Sheffield library ... by that I mean it was never lent to a single person.

Now it doesn't take a genius to work out the attractiveness of this book to the local library system:

  • Its about black people rising above adversity.
  • Its about black people being victimised by white people.
  • It espouses multicultural values about the equality of mankind. 
  • And it would have sold about a dozen copies and been remaindered if left to public taste. 

So into the library system it was bought .... raising its sales into the thousands of copies.Where it no doubt lay unwanted on many a shelf for the last two decades or so .....

On the other hand, there were popular books in the library system that suddenly were deemed as not suitable for the shelves of public bodies such as schools and libraries. These books were often:

  • Popular, with a high take out rate.
  • Have big commercial sales 
  • Remained in print for decades
  • But contained 'inappropriate ethnic stereotypes' ... such as the works of Enid Blyton.

Of course, these bans can backfire and revive sales of books that had flagged as public tastes changed over the decades. A good example of this was when there were a series of challenges to bookshops and libraries which continued to stock 'Tintin in the Congo' by Herge. The book was of its time, but popular still ..... but under pressure from the usual suspects, it was redrawn over the years, because the original pictures were deemed to be 'racist' by portraying the African characters with exaggerated physiognomies (depictions of a hunted rhinoceros being blown up, were also removed for animal welfare concerns).

The redraws have subtlety changed African physiognomies.

However the irony was that when Borders the booksellers moved its copies to the adult section, it prompted sales to grow, to the point where it was their fifth highest selling title.

The message being that 'You can't buck the market'.

Unintended Consequences

The French sentence 'La tortue manges des pâtes'  .... The turtle (or maybe tortoise) is eating some ??? Pasta? Pastries? What is eating What?

By locking their language in to unresponsive straight jacket, the French end up with the ridiculous situation that as 'Pasta' is not a French word, they won't officially use the word 'Pasta', but instead have to use a 'French equivalent which was 'Pâtes', but which also means pastry / pastries. So they end up with ambiguous statements like above.

This is an example of the Law of Unintended Consequences, in this case of trying to freeze a language, but there are numerous other examples of this law in action about.

There Are Numerous Examples Of The Law Of Unintended Consequences

For instance, in the bad old days, when women were treated differently than men, you never saw a man seated when a woman was stood up on a bus or train. Now on my daily commute, I see women stood while men stay seated. This is a by product of 'equality' pressures and aggressive feminism.

I happily admit that I stay seated these days, although there was a time when I would offer my seat. I was cured of that when while in London, I offered my seat to a woman on the underground. I may as well have stuck my hand up her skirt for the negative response that I got. She rather loudly and pointedly refused, in a way which, looking back on it, was meant to embarrass me. Fortunately I was in full 'Northern' mode while down south, so spent the next 20 minutes loudly discussing why northern women had more sense (and manners), than southern women with my companion. She got the point and moved away.

Another example of this law is 'Multiculturalism', which was meant to be a a way of embracing immigrants cultures. Instead, under various socialist regimes, it ended up as an attack on our native culture, and has led to ghettos in the UK where Britishness or whiteness are attacked ....UKIP's rise is a direct result of this wrong 'ism' ... but all three are proof that any 'ism' is suspect as policy!

Wrath Of Kirchner

Argentina builds for another war .... or at least that's the only interpretation one can give to the general increase in attacks on Britain. They are ramping up these attacks, with their latest pathetic little narrow gesture, to make all British shipping lower their Red Ensigns when entering Buenos Aires harbour ....



The latest to feel the 'Wrath of Kirchner' was 'The Queen Victoria', a Cunard Cruise ship ...  Admiral Lord West said "The captain said to me that when they were in Buenos Aires that she'd basically been threatened with a punitive fine of $10,000 and also told there'd be 'trouble' if she didn't take down the Red Ensign ..... "

A Cunard spokesman confirmed: "As requested by the port authorities whilst Queen Victoria was in Argentinian waters the Cunard flag was flown, in this instance, rather than the Red Ensign."
 
As usual the British Government, in the form of the Foreign Office, issued a pallid limp response saying that it was 'unacceptable harassment and intimidation' ... I'll bet that will do ..... Err, so nothing to stop this latest Argy Bargy and very likely she will eventually nerve herself for another assault on the islands, which we are no longer equipped to retake.

So lets hope that the Argies don't win the World Cup ... Come on Holland or Brazil!

Oh for the days of Maggie!!

Update:

The Argentine Football Team have posed with a banner claiming the Falklands as Argentine .... the FIFA response is a pathetic 30,000 Swiss franc fine (£20,000) .... 

Argentine Football Team Put Boot In
.... by pathetic, I cite as an example, that they fined Argentine a whopping 300,000 Swiss franc (£200,000), for just failing to take Argentina players to pre-match news conferences at the World Cup in Brazil. Blatter's priorities shine through ...

Wahabi Counter-Reformation

There is one suggestion about what’s going on in the Islamic world, that I have not seen discussed anywhere. It’s the 'Counter-Reformation' theory.

This is my theory that the Wahhabi form of Islam, centred on Saudi Arabia, and that has fuelled so much of the violence of the past 25 yrs, including the 9/11 bombings (Saudi terrorists, Saudi Money and 'unofficial' Saudi Backing, Masterminded by a member of a Saudi family who are friends of the Bush family .... so the Bush family bomb Afghanistan), is in fact leading a backlash against the liberalisation of Islam that took place in the 1950's, 60's and early 1970's.

Now when I say 'liberalisation', like Einstein, I mean 'relatively'. However I can give some examples of this ..... In the Arab world, it was largely 'secular' socialist leaning 'Nationalist' governments in power, from the newly installed 'Baathist ‘parties in Iraq and Syria, to President Gamal Abdel Nasser in Egypt. In the rest of the Muslim world, Islam was mostly at peace within itself and with the other religions ... so much so that the 'Hippie Trail' went through Turkey, Iran and on to Afghanistan and the Kashmir. With thousands of western teens backpacking comparatively safely every year to those exotic destinations.

This all seemed to come to an end when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan and the US backed extreme Jihadist groups such as the Mujahedeen to fight them, and these groups were given their religious focus by hard-line Saudi clerics (funded by the Saudi Royal family).

Immediately the 'hippie trail', which had been petering out anyway, was closed, as the violent no toleration dead hand of 7th century Islam descended, firstly on the local region, and then over the next 25 years over all of the Islamic world .... similarly in the Shia world, the Ayatollah and his band took over in Iran, with much the same effect and for much the same reasons ..... its this process, this counter reformation if you like, to the religious 'laxness' that the Wahhabi's (and Ayatollah) saw emerging in the 1970's, that we are seeing around the globe now.

In Europe the Counter Reformation, while violent, petered out when it became apparent that it would not win absolute victory ... however it’s not so clear that the Sunni Jihadists have recognised this fact, or even care. Overall they are apparently winning inside the Sunni Islamic world, where 'Sharia' law is imposed more widely than it has been for 100 yrs, with formerly tolerant and moderate Muslim countries such as Malaya and Indonesia, now enforcing ever harsher penalties on Muslims and practising tough discrimination laws against non-Muslims .e.g. enforcing blasphemy laws on Non-Muslims.

The Mahdi in Sudan Was The Last To Create A 'Caliphate'

Even the new 'Caliphate' that the Jihadists strive for, is apparently within reach again, with the ISIS control of parts of Syria and Iraq being the largest 'Caliphate' land grab since the Mahdi in the Sudan and parts of then Egypt 135 yrs ago ...

ISIS 'Caliphate' In Syria and Iraq

It’s probably no coincidence that the leaders in the West who have allowed all this to unfold, are the post war, post empire, post 50's generation, who remember the hippy trail as a happy aspiration, and who just can't quite comprehend the full extent of the dangers that the West is really facing, as in earlier Islamic upheavals, it was the Muslim locals (and the minority religions such as the persecuted Christians), who faced the violence of those struggles.

So they have sat smugly back and allowed mass Islamic immigration into the West, seemingly oblivious to the radical schism that exists in  Islam, or the fact that both those sects Sunni and Shia, wish ultimately to force the rest of the world to acknowledge their superiority .... so the politicians just ignore the very real threat of violence that will likely erupt in our midst.

We may face a hundred years of mayhem, with a 5th column growing in our population .... Trojan horses come in many guises, and we could face much bloodshed if we don't push this one outside of the gates of Vienna.

Friday, 13 June 2014

Beer - Elixir Of Life

I always knew that drinking was good for you on more than the 'good cheer' level!

Beers - Elixir Of Life

It turns out that there are 10 good reasons to drinking real ales (including some lagers):

  1. Rehydration: The sugars, salts and bubbles help people absorb fluids - thus aiding hydration.
  2. Energy: Rich in Vitamin B (like meat and vegetables) maintains energy and grow muscles.
  3. Bone Density: Ale Drinkers have denser bones, with Pale Ale drinkers getting better results that lager drinkers.
  4. Healthy Hair and Nails: Rich in Silica's, connective tissues need for growth.
  5. Cancer Preventative: Xanthohumol is a compound in beer that helps prevents cancers and menopausal hot flushes.
  6. Heart Attacks: Beer raises levels of HDL which prevents clogging of arteries.
  7. Digestion:  Two glasses (or Pints as I call them), help keep you 'regular'.
  8. Inflammation: Scientific studies have shown that Beer can reduce joint swellings.
  9. Kidneys:  Reduces the risk of kidney stones.
  10. Long Life: A pint a day can lower blood pressure thus adding about five years to your life.
So there you are .... 10 good reasons to go out to the pub ..... enjoy your drinks!

No Cheers In NFL

Who would have thought it .... apparently American Football Cheerleaders are sometimes subject to some 'sexism' when being selected or training .... with such things as 'jiggle tests', as well as tests of athletic dance ability, being required to get or retain a place on the teams.

A 'jiggle test' by the way is where they are judged on their physical appearance in their outfit, and told which parts of their bodies are problem areas they need to work on. Too many warnings for an out-of-shape body could lead to sitting out a game, or even the sack.

Really!! What shocking times we live in, when a teenage nymphet, in a skimpy leotard or costume, and willing to do acrobatic contortions to entertain a largely male crowd, can be asked to demean herself by going a 'jiggle test' before winning a place on a dance team, where she will then happily cavort about. Of course that cavorting about, can mean that they face heckling, and possibly, groping, at sponsors / promotional events. As one ex-cheerleader said "Let's be honest. You're an NFL cheerleader and you're standing in front of 10,000 drunk guys all the time".

Traditionally, its never been a well paid role in the National Football League scheme of things, with many cheerleaders making around $100 (£60) per show or less. They receive no compensation for time spent practising or working at promotional events, and only one club, the Seattle Seahawks, has said that they pay cheerleaders an hourly wage and overtime.

Seahawks Cheerleaders aka 'Sea Gals' On Hourly Rates

But these poor conditions are mainly fuelled by the fact that many, many, teen girls are willing to do the work for peanuts, as its a chance to break into Playboy, or even TV, and of receiving a very thorough dance training. Although to be fair, on the plus side, the girls can pose for calendar shots, which are then sold as fund-raiser's and the most popular ladies are able to pocket the profits from their 'personal sales'.

Of course, given all these Dickensian working conditions (on a par with chimney sweeps if you ask me),  they have been advised to sue .... this is America after all. Especially if they believe that by undergoing and failing said 'jiggle test' they didn't actually get the job, were made to sit on the bench, or feel demeaned in some other way. So now three trial lawsuits have gone in against the NFL, citing that the complainants:
  1. Aren't compensated fairly for their work, and
  2. Are subject to degrading work conditions, and unwanted sexual contact.
  3. That they often have to pay for certain beauty products such as skin tanning sessions and gels for fair skinned dancers.
  4. Pay up front for their promotional calendars, and therefore lose money if they don't all sell.
  5. Are asked to do 'voluntary' promotional work, which is in effect unpaid labour.
In the end, said a lawyer representing some of the girls, it doesn't matter that there are thousands of women lining up to do the job, or that they get perks by being associated with the NFL, but 'The NFL isn't just about football. It's about pageantry and spectacle, and above all, commerce, bringing in $9bn (£5.3bn) last year. The cheerleaders, she says, should get their share' ..... ah, that's the important bit 'get their share'.

Well suing will no doubt bring a bit of sanity to a world gone mad ....

The Future Belongs To Us

Poor old Mexico .... drug cartels everywhere you look, a low level civil war with those same cartels that is seemingly endless, and has cost tens of thousands of lives, and yet unbelievably that isn't its biggest problem. No, it is in fact a very bloated, very corrupt trades union. One that has had a massive influence over the  way civic Mexico has developed for the last 70 years, and will also develop in the next 50 as
well.

Now before I name and shame, one has to understand the way 'modern' Mexico developed .... The Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), assumed power after a long civil war in the late 1920's, and instituted a long series of electoral wins which became categorised as 'One Party Rule', between 1929–2000 ... this was of course a left-wing government (on which the current Venzuela government is modelled), and like all such political systems, it soon became corrupt, and the organisations and institutions it controlled soon became so as well.

One of those organisations was the education of children. Historically there had been an issue between the education offered in rural areas, and  the one in the urban areas .... this came to a head in the early 1920's, when there was disagreement between teachers who graduated from Escuelas Normales (teacher colleges) and the teachers from rural communities who had litle formal training. The “Normalistas” were reluctant to accept any expansion of teaching posts, to allow individuals who did not receive the same formal education as them, to teach. 

The revolutionary government of the time took the side of the rural teachers in this conflict, and  expanded the Escuelas Normales into rural communities, so any person who wanted to teach could have the same academic background. They also identified the need for a professional and curriculum reorganization, and the Secretariat of Public Education (SEP) was created on September 25, 1921. In the 1930's, the new federal government implemented a centralization initiative to develop a national, education system for its people.

All ran smoothly enough, while Mexico went through something of an economic miracle, despite having a centralised control on the economy, and in December 1943, the Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores de la Educacion (SNTE) was founded, with the goal of educating, protecting and improving the benefits of educators. From the start the Union had a liberal membership rule, and it includes teachers, both from the public and private sector, educators with permanent and temporary positions, retired educators, members of the Secretaria de Educacion (SEP), and administrators from the federal, state, and municipal governments amongst its membership.

The nature of the one party state system soon led to 'clientelism' and the SNTE gained power over the education system, as it provided PRI politicians with votes in exchange for economic benefits for teachers. Although it was recognised that things had started to go seriously wrong in the education system, all attempts at reform, even after the PRI lost regular power in 2000, failed because of the opposition of all the unions, but particularly the SNTE.

SNTE Union Protects Its Interests

So now Mexico has the poorest education results of any country in the OECD. The problems are widespread and entrenched, and hold Mexico in a vice like grip, with its future mortgaged to this powerful union. Just to give you a flavour of the conditions the SNTE union has managed to lever out of successive Mexican leaders, here's a few of the highlights of what their membership can expect:

  • All teachers belonging to the SNTE union have refused to undergo even the most basic of teaching aptitude tests. 
  • They have more paid holidays than just the time between term periods.
  • They get two annual bonuses, one from the Federal and State level (two rounds of negotiation).
  • Some teachers in some states do not pay taxes on the bonuses (the taxes are paid by government).
  • They can buy and sell their positions as public officials
  • They can even bequeath their jobs to their children as hereditary posts. 
  • They get Orthopedic insurance and Dental insurance.
  • Their own subsidised housing program (Viviendas).

As a result of this:

  • There are actually 70 teachers, who records show earn more than the Mexican President.
  • Recently, it was revealed that 1,440 teachers in the state of Hidalgo alone, were all registered with the same birth date of 12 December 1912, making them 102 years old. 

Nepotism, corruption and inefficiency are commonplace in Mexican schools .... more attempts at reform are under way following more scandals, but are being met by stiff resistance from the teachers unions, so that  most Mexican pupils aren't doing any better today, than they were three years ago when the reforms started. The drug wars may eventually go away, especially if the Uruguayan approach to drug reform is adopted, but the future of Mexico will rest on the success of reforms to its schools system.

Voodoo Murders

In the past I have frequently attacked the members of Islamic societies such as Saudi Arabia, for believing in 'Witchcraft', and killing people for no crime at except upsetting their religious superstitions, so it would be wrong not to continue to point out when Christians, and other Non Muslims do exactly the same thing .... I won't even try to publish the pictures as they are sickening.

A false allegation of being an exponent of voodoo, results in a flash mob attacking a woman, Fabiane Maria de Jesus, a 33-year-old mother of two, first heavily beating and then hanging her. All in broad daylight, and in front of many who were filming the event on their phones to be hurriedly posted on social media platforms. Welcome to the 21st century, meets the 16th century ....

There had been rumours circulating for some time in the slums of the town of Guaruja, near Sao Paulo in Brazil, about a woman kidnapping local children to perform voodoo rituals on them, with the perpetrator alleged to always be carrying a Bible. The stories were posted on the Guaruja Alerta Facebook page, despite the fact that the people running the page were told by police that the rumours weren't true.

Belief In Voodoo Is Strong In Brazil ....

Carrying a Bible in Brazil, is hardly uncommon as its a devoutly Catholic country, so when she was carrying a Bible on the day she was attacked, Fabiane Maria de Jesus should hardly have stood out, but when she was seen giving a banana to a child, it triggered a flash mob to suddenly accuse and attack her ....because belief in Voodoo is almost as strong as Christianity in Brazil .....

"We don't think the owner of the Facebook page is a murderer. We think he is an irresponsible person who should take responsibility for what he has done." said De Jesus' lawyer, Airton Sinto.

And just in case you thought this was a rare example of public mob murder in Brazil, on the 30th June last year, in the remote town of Pio in the state of Maranhão, Otavio da Silva Catanhede Jordan, a football referee was dismembered by a mob of fans. He had given a red card to a player Josenir dos Santos Abreu, who then punched him in the face, and the enraged referee pulled a knife and stabbed him ... things went from bad to worse when 'fans' stormed the pitch, stoned the referee, tied him up, cut off both his hands, and both legs below the knees. Not finished or satisfied with this barbarity, they then decapitated him and stuck his head on a spike in the centre circle of the pitch. 

There was just one man arrested and two on the run .... the stabbed footballer died in the ambulance on the way to hospital, ironically he may well have survived if the paramedics had been called immediately, but the torture and murder of the referee took up the time needed to treat him. Both examples of barbaric and backward behaviour in a so called rising 'superpower' like Brazil, and as bad as in the lands of Islam or India.

Suffice it to say that in a country where the ignorant are in the majority, where superstition and religion hold sway over the poor, the merely stupid are kings ......

Friday, 6 June 2014

Modesty Forbids

We have seen Iranians complaining that Western women's dress appearances are too rude for Iranian male religious sensibilities on a number of occasions, mostly around sports such as the Winter Olympics, and the World Cup. We have even seen them altering pictures that showed too much contact between an Iranian male, and the non Muslim widow of a family friend, when he offered the simple hand of comfort during her grieving.

However what I hadn't realised until recently, was that there is in fact apparently an entire industry in many arenas of the Iranian media for photo-shop experts, whose sole task is to carefully censor pictures of non Muslim women that have to be shown in the Iranian media, to make them look like Muslims ... or rather, to make them appear to conform to the dress codes of a Muslim woman.

Examples exposed by the press have ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous with the modest Michelle Obama getting the treatment .....

Mrs Obama Before and After the Censorship

Then there was the even more modest and matronly European Union foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton who also offended their dress sensibilities.

Catherine Ashton Before and After Press Censorship

Oh and in case you were wondering how they deal with these issues on TV .... well they either just pan away from shots of Western women (and even their own females in the case of coverage of the country's successful female volleyball team, with complaints over the "un-Islamic" clothes worn by women, in the crowd of a tournament held in Sardinia .... although this probably means the non-muslim women), or they simply blur them out .... Mrs Ashton gets the treatment again.

Mrs Ashton Blurred From History ....

I don't think I really have to add a comment to all of this abnormal behaviour ..... there are almost times when I actually feel sorry for them to live in such a world and with such a sad world view of half of the human race  .... but only almost.

Jolly Tasty Drinkie

Globalisation's down-side can come in unexpected forms as the Chinese are discovering. They seem to  suffer from the French disease of 'language purity' (I understand that the Spanish try it was well via the Real Academia del Idioma), and are finding that in a world full of Anglo-Saxon 'English speakers' who wilfully pick up, create and drop words by the hundreds every year, its near impossible to stop these words invading the Chinese language as well.

So iPad and iTunes and YouTube (all brand names, rather than actual words), have invaded the language untouched by translations, whereas Coca Cola is 'tasty and jolly' in Chinese ... ironically many of the brand terms that are 'translated', are meaningless terms in English.

Jolly Tasty Drinkie!

In the long term, in any battle between a pictographic language and a phonetic language like English, there can only be one eventual winner. Where would English be without other people's words! - taxi, yacht, pyjama, mutton, orthodontist the list is endless ...including bamboo, Ketchup and tea. English wouldn't be the driving force that it is today if it hadn't embraced "foreign" words from just about everywhere.

In Wales, Welsh is force fed to the school population, despite it being all but dead, and they do the same nonsense with Gaelic in the Celtic fringes ... or in England, teaching French to the English. In the real world, Spanish (Americas), German (Europe) or Chinese (Trade) are the only viable alternatives to English, with "Ich bin ein Englander" (I am a monkey wrench) giving us shades of JFK's "Ich bin ein Berliner" (I am a doughnut).

Welcome to 'Globalisation' China ... you can't have your cake and eat it. Top economy, means global influences .... oh and good luck trying to export Chinese phrases or words nowadays, as you are only selling us our own inventions cheaper, not the brand new concepts that create new words.

Heart Of Darkness

James Hall, is a retired colonel and former UK military attache to Nigeria, and was a UK military officer who has worked closely with the Nigerian military. So when he gave the  BBC an interview about the hostage situation and Boko Haram, he should be listened to. Firstly he says they are stuck in a 'Catch-22 situation' when dealing with Boko Haram.

"What they say about former military regimes is true," he said. "They cripple their militaries so that there can't be further coups." .... this obviously leaves their army ill equipped and badly trained. The consequence of this is that the Nigerian public are often more fearful of them, than they are of the terrorists. This is because the Nigerian army has reacted very badly to defeats in the recent past, for instance after one attack on a barracks by Boko Haram, the army responded by subjugating locals to an ordeal that left over 600, mainly civilians, dead. On many of the most recent terror attacks, the army is alleged to have fired a few volleys then run away faster than the civilians.

In fact, such is the poor reputation of the Nigerian armed forces acting inside Nigeria, that the UK and other Western governments are now very wary in giving training assistance, and even the sale of better equipment are also now proving to be problematic areas. This, even though the Nigerian Armies roles in African peace keeping missions, have been rather more successful than their actions inside Nigeria. 

"We have reduced dramatically the types of training and equipment we're willing to provide. Yet without the training, they won't be able to get the equipment, and we aren't giving them the training either," Mr Hall said, when explaining the Catch 22 situation. This has resulted in Boko Haram being better armed than the army (they are being financially backed by Islamists in other countries), which has resulted in the army losing many stand up fire fights to the terrorists.

What Mr Hall should have added was that, the Nigerian politicians are venal and crafty (when it comes to getting money without working, keeping money, and not paying taxes by lying), but basically ignorant, or even downright stupid when it comes to anything else ...

Nothing give this away more, than the following quote from his interview ..... 

"The trouble with the Nigerian government is that they want a big red button, which you can press and it will fix everything. I was asked by a senior commander if we could sell them the machine that can tell if a car driving down the road contains a terrorist".

"I tried to tell them that such a machine doesn't exist, but then they just thought we were hiding it from them."
 
Western X-ray For Spotting Terrorists

... an X-ray machine that lights up terrorists!! 

They just don't understand the concept of hard intelligence gathering, and assume that the West has secret machines that identify terrorists.

Now This Is More Like It ....

Actually, it doesn't look too hard to spot some African Islamic terrorists ...

African Jihadists Not Always Hard To Spot ...

I have mentioned before that some cultures treat Western science and engineering as 'magic', nothing more, and nothing less. I suspect that like Pakistan with the Taliban, Nigeria is playing with fire if it doesn't seriously tackle Boko Haram soon.

The Price Of Freedom

The French are commemorating and acknowledging, the loss of lives caused by Allied bombings during the Second World War for the first time, during the D Day remembrances this week. The estimated death toll is around 57,000 French civilians (which some unkindly, and untruthfully have said was more than the French army casualties resisting the Germans), which is comparable to the 60,500, that the British lost as a result of Luftwaffe bombing over the same period.

I can almost feel the first stirrings of the legal aid lawyers in the UK, preparing the compensation claims against the British, Canadians and US governments, for carrying out what one commentator, Andrew Knapp, history professor at the UK's University of Reading, has described in the following terms: "It's fairly clear, that on the basis of the treaties we have signed now - not the treaties we had signed then - some of these raids would be eligible for the category of war crimes."

Le Havre - Bombed By Allies 1944

However I would suggest that not only did the allies have a right to bomb (under the conventions of the time), but that the casualty figures demonstrably show that they did take care greater care in their bombing of France than might have normally been the case .... partly because Winston Churchill worried that Anglo-French relations might be soured for decades if the bombing was wilful. See General de Gaulle to understand that worry. The actual figures, are that approx. 75,000 tonnes of German bombs were dropped on the UK (including Hitler's V missiles), during the war, while in France, it's around 518,000 tonnes dropped by the UK and USA while attacking German troops etc.

Now by my simple maths 60,500 / 75,000 = 0.81 civilian deaths per explosive tonne dropped in the UK, by the Germans, who definitely took no care whatsoever.

Whereas 57,000 / 518,000 = 0.11 deaths civilian per explosive tonne in France, from bombs dropped by the allies .... a ratio of nearly 8 times as few deaths caused by the allies per tonne of explosive.

The Price Of Freedom Was Not Cheap For France

However, its a funny thought, that if the second world war was fought today, France would be permanently an occupied country, as the Western powers wouldn't be able to bomb the Germans in France enough to invade under current rules of war .... that’s what PC politics, and Health and Safety concerns have done to us.

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A middle aged orange male ... So 'un' PC it's not true....