UPDATE: Seems like quite a few chicken-loving, same-sex marriage foes turned out for Wednesday’s Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.
Based on reports from around the country, many Chick-fil-As had lines out the door come lunchtime. Attendees emphasized a mix of support for the company’s stance against equal marriage rights and for what’s being billed as an underlying free speech issue in the initial backlash against the fast food chain’s officially outed politics. Mayors in a handful of cities, including Boston and Chicago, responded to CEO Dan Cathy’s recent remarks on his “Biblical” view of marriage by insinuating that the chain was not welcome within city limits.
Somali Muslims: tough crowd!
One of Somalia‘s most popular comedians, known for his parodies of Islamist militants, has been shot dead in the capital, Mogadishu.
Abdi Jeylani Marshale was reportedly killed shortly after leaving a local radio station where he worked as a drama producer and performer.
It is not known who carried out the murder but last year Marshale was threatened by the extremist group al-Shabaab, prompting him to go into hiding in neighbouring Somaliland for several days.
Witnesses told the BBC that Marshale was shot several times in the head and chest by two men armed with pistols. The gunmen have not been caught.
Anthony Gregory chimes in on Cathygate at the Independent Institute.
In the last two weeks, we have seen the weakness of many left-liberals’ support for civil liberties. Last week, progressive bloggers, activists, and politicians piled on Chick-fil-A, whose president Dan Cathy has spoken critically of and supported groups that oppose gay marriage. For his stance on this issue, which is not all that different from Obama’s stance just a year ago, many in the gay rights movement decided to boycott his fast food chain. Whatever one thinks of this, it is well within the rights of people to vote with their dollars. The Executive Director of Log Cabin Republicans argues that the boycott is poor strategy, however, because “turning a chicken sandwich into Public Gay Enemy Number One makes LGBT people look superficial, vindictive and juvenile—everything that we as a community have worked hard to overcome.”
Yet far more disturbing to anyone interested in civil liberties was the threat of a government crackdown on the basis of the business owner’s political opinions. Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel and Boston mayor Thomas Menino both indicated a willingness to keep the restaurant out of their cities, using their power as government officials to fight the culture war.
While the most consistent left-liberal voices for civil liberties, among them the ACLU, have defended Chick-fil-A’s right to open a business regardless of the proprietor’s political views, there has been far too much silence or even enthusiasm toward these threats of political coercion, which carry potentially totalitarian implications. A government that can prohibit people from engaging in peaceful commerce based on traditional cultural and conservative political values is as big a threat to civil liberties as anything the left imagines a conservative Big Brother poses. Most strikingly, left-liberals often, with a lot of justification, decry the Red Scares in American history—the private and public ostracism and at times oppression that befell communists, communist sympathizers, or anyone deemed too far radically left in America. Communism posed a real threat to world peace and liberty, and its political leaders collectively murdered close to a hundred million people in the 20th century. If Americans should have a right to pursue work despite their sympathies for such a violent ideology, surely Chick-fil-A shouldn’t be blacklisted simply for holding traditional views on marriage.
Female patrons are visiting shooting ranges in greater numbers, some carrying leopard-print concealment purses. Will their training really make society safer?
It’s Ladies Night at the gun range. No longer the sacred pastime of cowboys and Indians, shooting has become a favorite pastime for more and more young women across the country. “Want a real girls’ night out?” asks an ad for the Silver Bullet Shooting Range in Wheat Ridge, Colorado, underneath an image of a shapely leg in stiletto heels. To draw in female customers, many ranges and clinics designate special days when women are encouraged to practice target shooting or participate in events or seminars for a reduced fee.
I am an independent politically. I believe in less government on the national level and more local control at a city state community level. I believe in diversity and that small government should reflect the community that lives within it. Because of all this, I see segregation, political, ethnic, religious, racial, and cultural, as a very good thing. Each community or city state should draw from different demographics. And then that local government, in its laws, traditions and education, can reflect that unique community. This would solve so many of our cultural conflicts. It would allow for true diversity of communities. My views need not be seen as racist even though I advocate segregation. I also believe that a community can chose to be multicultural and totally secular if they chose that route. My libertarian, city state vision would be an interesting experiment in freedom. Which communities would thrive? Which would deteriorate? Institutional racism would no longer be a problem because people of color could have their own communities, to design in their own fashion. I call my vision, postmodern anarchical nationalism. I am a PANist. It is post modern because it doesn’t build on one paradigm or one single view of reality. It allows for each community to find its own reality and build on it. The only fundamental rule is to respect the sovereignty of all other city states and not infringe or conquer them. If there is a federal or national government, its sole purpose would be to protect the freedom of the city state. So that’s Panism. Would it work? I think ultimately some form of it will have to. There is no other way to accommodate the diversity we find on this small planet.
Since 1928, only Dwight Eisenhower and George W. Bush have won the presidency while capturing both houses of Congress for the GOP.
In his 49-state landslide, Richard Nixon failed to take either House. In his two landslides, Ronald Reagan won back only the Senate. Yet Mitt Romney is even money to pull off the hat trick.
With this hopeful prospect, why the near despair among so many Republicans about the long term?
In his New York Times report, “In California, GOP Fights Steep Decline,” Adam Nagourney delves into the reasons.
In the Golden Land, a state Nixon carried all five times he was on a national ticket and Reagan carried by landslides all four times he ran, the GOP does not hold a single statewide office. It gained not a single House seat in the 2010 landslide. Party registration has fallen to 30 percent of the California electorate and is steadily sinking.
Why? It is said that California Republicans are too out of touch, too socially conservative on issues like right-to-life and gay rights. “When you look at the population growth,” says GOP consultant Steve Schmidt, “the actual party is shrinking. It’s becoming more white. It’s becoming older.”
Silly mare; sillier punishment.
Mind you, if the Games got cancelled at the last minute, I wouldn’t complain. Part of me hopes for a repeat of last year’s riots, if only to offset the climate of force-fed positivity surrounding the event.
EDIT (27/7/12): The more I looked into it, the more I thought the “racism” angle bullshit. If the immigrants and mosquitoes come from the same continent, of course the latter would be more used to dining on the former (“home-food”). Perhaps ‘geographist’ fits better?
I’d call the Golden Dawn endorsement more ‘problematic’, though the Olympic PC Police were tellingly silent about that, prior to the joke.
By Katherine Faulkner and Nick McDermott
A Greek triple jumper has been expelled from the Olympics after she posted a racist joke on Twitter.
Voula Papachristou was kicked out of her national team for mocking African migrants and expressing support for a far-Right political party.
Her offending message – which was referring to reports of mosquitoes carrying the West Nile virus in her home country – read: ‘With so many Africans in Greece, at least the West Nile mosquitoes will eat home made food!’
In the wake of Friday morning’s bloodbath at a Colorado movie theater, America struggles to figure out who or what to blame.
They’ve obviously ruled out the shooter.
James Holmes, 24, will be arraigned in a Colorado courtroom this morning and charged with a spree killing at a midnight debut screening of the new Batman film The Dark Knight Rises that at last count left 12 dead and 58 wounded. Based on the total number of victims, the event would constitute the largest lone-wolf mass shooting in American history. Although he reportedly surrendered to police outside the theater clad from head to toe in riot gear and told them he was the “Joker,” he has apparently not formally confessed and has yet to be convicted, so journalistic etiquette dictates that Holmes be called the alleged gunman.
But even if he hurled the tear-gas canisters and fired the rounds, no man is an island, correct? At best, we’re all tiny non-autonomous fiefdoms in a sprawling continent. We are mere cells in a giant organism, little pieces in a huge puzzle, and when one of the pieces doesn’t quite fit anymore, the rest of the puzzle must be blamed.
So obviously “society” is to blame. But not all of society, because that would include the countless members of society who are blaming society for this. So what part of society is to blame?
Of the various manifestations of the egalitarian cultural revolution that has transpired in the Western world over the past half century, none have been quite so enduring or become so deeply rooted in the culture of modern society as the so-called “sexual revolution.” Indeed, it might well be argued that even the supposed commitment of Western cultural elites in the early twenty-first century to the ethos of racial egalitarianism is not quite as profound as their commitment to the preservation and expansion of the victories of the sexual revolution. The sexual revolution itself brings with it many of its own manifestations. These include the now prevailing feminist ethos, the liberalization of both popular opinion and public legislation concerning sexual conduct, abortion and contraception, divorce, the normalization of homosexuality accompanied by the growth of powerful homosexual political interest groups, and the identification of an ever-growing list of “gender identity” or “sexual orientation” groups who are subsequently assigned their position in the Left’s pantheon of the oppressed.
Of course, the ongoing institutionalization of the values of the sexual revolution is not without its fierce critics. Predictably, the most strident criticism of sexual liberalism originates from the clerical and political representatives of the institutions of organized Christianity and from concerned Christian laypeople. Public battles over sexual issues are depicted in the establishment media as conflicts between progressive-minded, intelligent and educated liberals versus ignorant, bigoted, sex-phobic reactionaries. Dissident conservative media outlets portray conflicts of this type as pitting hedonistic, amoral sexual libertines against beleaguered upholders of the values of faith, family, and chastity. Yet this “culture war” between liberal libertines and Christian puritans is not what should be the greatest concern of those holding a radical traditionalist or conservative revolutionary outlook.
The hoarsely ululating throats of the “pro-life” and “pro-choice” movements screamed at each other outside a small abortion clinic in Jackson, Mississippi last week as a federal judge cock-blocked a state lawand allowed the clinic to stay open for now. The law would have effectively shut down the Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which is Mississippi’s last remaining abortion clinic.
Few political issues are as supercharged with moral hysteria as abortion. What’s moral, as always, is in the eye of the moralizer. Outside the clinic and in the comments section of every online news story about the case, there were the requisite dueling accusations of moral turpitude and hypocrisy, of which side values basic human dignity and which doesn’t. The pro-lifers spoke of a legal holocaust of unborn fetuses while the pro-choicers bemoaned state-sanctioned reproductive slavery.
One side warned of bloody coat hangers from back-alley abortions, while the other toted garish picket signs of legally aborted shredded embryos. And all of it was a relentlessly bloody power struggle for the moral upper hand: On one extreme you have those who believe one drop of spilled male semen is an abomination before the Lord, while on the other were the super-empowered mega-sluts who instead choose to sacralize their “sexuality” and blithely eject unwanted fetuses from their wombs with the regularity of old toasters disgorging the morning’s burnt toast.
Minimizing Marriage: Marriage, Morality, and the Law, by Elizabeth Brake, Oxford University Press, 240 pp., $24.95.
Opponents of same-sex marriage are quick to raise the specter of polygamy. If “everybody should have the right to marry,” Rick Santorum asked on the campaign trail earlier this year, then “what aboutthree men?” While Santorum clearly intended this quip as a reductio ad absurdum of calls for marriage equality, the Arizona State University philosopher Elizabeth Brake argues in Minimizing Marriage that recognizing polygamous and polyamorous unions is not only required by justice but doesn’t go far enough.
For Brake, marriage not only should not be restricted to opposite-sex couples, or indeed to couples at all. It constitutes unjust discrimination, she argues, to restrict marriage to romantic or sexual relationships. Instead, the social and legal status of marriage should be available to “caring relationships” of all kinds (though not to Santorum’s further bugaboos of “man on child” and “man on dog” unions, since parties to marriage contracts must be legally competent). Moreover, the terms of such marriages should be flexible, rather than fixed by a state-imposed one-size-fits-all model; one might, as in one of Brake’s examples, choose to cohabit with a lover but confer one’s spousal health care benefits on an impoverished relative, and authority for end-of-life decisions on a close friend. The result is what Brake calls “minimal marriage”: marriage with minimal requirements for recognition.
Any discussion concerning the natural rights of man in relation to state sovereignty, independence from tyranny, self-determination, and de-centralization, certainly wouldn’t be complete without bringing awareness and understanding towards today’s important cause of Southern Nationalism.
John P. George, a member of the League of the South who holds a B.A. degree in sociology and philosophy from the University of Georgia, an M.A. degree in historical sociology from the University of New Brunswick, and a Ph.D. from Mississippi State University, writes that, “Southern independence is based on the belief that there are basic and distinct differences in culture, religion, political ideology, and ethnicity that form a nation distinct from the North. Ethnically the white population of the South has been predominantly from Great Britain and Ireland and northern Europe and Protestant Christian in religion. Politically the South has long been more conservative than the North or West, and regardless of ethnic background (e.g., black, Cajun, or Cherokee) all Southerners share a common history and certain similarities in cuisine, language, and music.”
While filling my car with gasoline possibly derived from Middle Eastern oil, I spotted a billboard for a local clothing store called US ARABIA. Though the sign’s head-swaddled male and female models appear to be Caucasian, palefaces are scant in the area around this gas station, so I’ll presume the ad is targeted at an overwhelmingly black local population.
At the local Dunkin’ Donuts and Walgreens, I’ve noticed a surge of Georgia-born blacks in Muslim apparel. The festive Afro-nationalist dashikis so popular among American blacks twenty years ago have been replaced with what seems like a dress rehearsal for the global caliphate.
Although Islam and black nationalism share a flame-belching, sword-swinging hatred for Western Civ, it’s an odd pairing when you consider history. American blacks who dump Christianity and shack up with Islam seem to think they’re flipping the bird at the creed that enslaved their ancestors, but they’re only swapping it for a religion that has enslaved their ancestors for far longer.
The idea of collective historical guilt is often wielded as a psychological weapon, and civilizations that allow themselves to be inoculated with the Guilt Germ can be conquered without a shot being fired. Islamic apologists and Western oikophobes scoff and spit and snort that anyone would dare draw equivalencies between the transatlantic and the Arab slave trades, yet the historical record laughs in their faces.
“Bilderberg conspiracies have become a handicap for the Liberty Movement,” says conservative commentator Jack Hunter in a recent article. “Bilderberg conspiracy theorists have become a political handicap. The Birthers probably have a few interesting points to make, but this doesn’t change the fact that their argument is toxic. It doesn’t change the fact that their rhetoric damages conservatives’ reputations every time a Birther opens his mouth.”
Hunter is right, and we do appreciate that someone else is speaking out against conspiracy theorists, but at the Skeptical Libertarian, we oppose conspiracy theories not merely because they are bad press for libertarianism, but because they are not supported by the facts. If the libertarian movement gained influence as a result of its proclivity for paranoid conspiracies, we would still oppose them. First and foremost, our commitment is to reality—popular or not—and to a conversation based on reason and evidence. Intellectual honesty is our core value, and scientific skepticism is the surest way to preserve that integrity.
This analysis is consistent with my own. The combination of widening class divisions and demographic and cultural change means the Repugs are screwed.
National Republicans may have some serious thinking to do. Their presumptive nominee, Mitt Romney looks to be in serious trouble on multiple fronts today.
Governor Romney has lost ground to President Obama and is now trailing in all of the national polls with the exception of the Rasmussen Reports poll which has been the poll most favorable to Governor Romney. Governor Romney is now tied with President Obama in the latest Rasmussen poll, which is asteep decline in that poll for Governor Romney relative to President Obama since early June.
AFP Photo/Getty Images
Swinging sex parties are slowing finding a place among Saudi Arabia`s foreign residents and elite. One foreign couple gave a sneak peak into their private lives that could cost them their freedom or more in the conservative Islamic kingdom.
The couple, living in the capital Riyadh, says they organize so-called “wife-swapping” parties once a month with up to five couples participating.
“It is something we do and we are not ashamed of it,” said Tara, who asked that her full name not to be disclosed. Partner swapping is the best way “to find out more about ourselves sexually,” she argues.