Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Islam on Stornoway: Why the church should support Muslims' right to build mosques | Christian News on Christian Today

David Robertson, writing in Christian Today, sounds like a very lovely fellow and I'm sure he is.  He welcomes Muslims building a new mosque on his remote Island, which has to this day been dominated by the Free Church.
He ends his homily with these words:
The whole story is another reminder that the world is not as black and white as our soundbite culture portrays it. Thank the Lord that we live in a diverse and multi-coloured culture in which we still have freedom to preach the gospel to all.
That's all very fine and nice, and to be hoped for.  But what of this: in the US, five separate studies, including one by an imam, have revealed 80% of mosques to be infiltrated by extremists and extremist literature (here).  In the post immediately below, we have the Mayor of Brussels stating that every mosque in the European capital is controlled by Salafists (here).  
What's to stop the eventual takeover of the very nice mosque in Stornoway by the same radicals.  Why, nothing, for the radicals are the ones most motivated and relentless in their pursuit of Allah's order to spread Islam worldwide.  This is their religious passion and religious duty.  
Poor Father Robertson.  He may not live to see this happen in his lifetime, but likely his progeny will, and find they lose "the freedom to preach the gospel to all", for that's blasphemy in sharia law.

Belgium: First Islamic State in Europe?

Well, Europe did this to itself. When the Muslim population is in the majority there will be nothing to stop the ISLAM party of Belgium doing what it wants, namely to install Sharia, to which all — Muslim and non-Muslims alike — will have to adhere.  This is not the Europe that we've known and not the Europe that most Europeans (still) want.  Just that their betters, the politicians and people on the Left, have brought it into Europe to show their openness and tolerance.
And when Sharia is installed, the Left will say "oh well, it's democracy, if the majority want it, so be it".  
I've worked in Sharia countries — Malaysia, Indonesia, Saudi and Iran — and it's not pretty.
By the way, this also gives the lie to the Left which says that conservatives are hyperventilating when they share concern about Islamisation of Europe. "Bigotry" and "Xenophobia" and "Islamophobia" they say. 
From the summary:
  • The leaders of Belgium's ISLAM Party apparently want to turn Belgium into an Islamic State. They call it "Islamist democracy" and have set a target date: 2030.

  • "The program is confusingly simple: replace all the civil and penal codes with sharia law. Period". — French magazine Causeur.

  • "The European capital [Brussels] will be Muslim in twenty years". — Le Figaro.

Jewish Power at 70 Years | New York Times | Bret Stephens

Israelis celebrate 70th anniversary of their independence.  New York Times
Much of the discussion of Israel's 70th anniversary is critical.  Roger Cohen in the New York Times, for example, who seems to be wandering off the reservation at regular intervals lately.  And Amos Oz, Israel's most famous living author, talking to The Economist.  All talk about the iniquity of the "occupation" of the West Bank, and the need for a two-state solution.  Agreed, but how does this work?  How does Israel give land back when it will only lead to attacks on Israel's homeland.  As Gaza withdrawal proved.
As Bret Stephens says in the article below:
The armchair corporals of Western punditry think this is excessive. It would be helpful if they could suggest alternative military tactics to an Israeli government dealing with an urgent crisis against an adversary sworn to its destruction. They don’t.
Read the whole article here or below the fold.

“Despairing on Earth Day? Read This” | New York Times | Richard Conniff

Opinion | Despairing on Earth Day? Read This - The New York Times
Somewhere I'm sure I've written about the seemingly counter-intuitive fact that urbanisation is good for the environment. Mainly because city dwellers emit less carbon dioxide per capita. 
And, as described in this article, child mortality in cities is less than the country so people have fewer children. 
Mr. Walston sipped his beer and listed what he called "the four pillars" of conservation in the modern era — (1) a stabilized human population, (2) increasingly concentrated in urban areas, (3) able to escape extreme poverty, and (4) with a shared understanding of nature and the environment — "and all four are happening right now." He singled out the trend toward urbanization as the biggest driver of environmental progress, bigger perhaps than all the conservation efforts undertaken by governments and environmental groups alike.

Friday, 20 April 2018

Elderly in Hong Kong need helpers on hand, everyone must realise that

A helping hand for the elderly is a win for all
My letter to the editor of South China Morning Post was published today, a bit to my surprise because I hadn't sent it as a "letter to ed" just as a comment meant to be passed to Peter Kammerer.  Oh well, they printed it anyway....
Here's the text, which in the printed version was headlined "We must realise that our elderly need assistance":

Good to see your senior writer, Peter Kammerer, admit that he was wrong (“I was wrong: Hong Kong does need domestic helpers for elderly care”, April 9). He now makes exactly the points I made in my letter published on December 7 (“Elderly need helpers as well as more clinics”).
But I do wonder: why does it take a personal experience – his elderly mother needing household care – to change his mind? Why could he not have empathised with others in the situation he now finds himself in, and done so before the fact? 
It seems that too many people are ready to denounce others without thinking. In his case, let’s not forget that he called it “laughable” that people should want to employ domestic helpers to help with elderly relatives. 
Still, it’s good that he has come around and had the integrity to publish in full the eating of his humble pie.
Peter Forsythe, Discovery Bay

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Feminists don’t care about the gender gap in ballet. Why should we care about the one in tech?

Feminists don't care about the gender gap in ballet. Why should we care about the one in tech?

What, if anything, do ballet and tech have in common? The obvious answer is that both fields show highly disproportionate gender distributions. 

Less acknowledged but no less relevant is this uncomfortable commonality: Both are industries where it pays to be in the sexual minority. I know, because I was a ballet dancer for 16 years.

Another thing: in countries with the most equal gender policies like Scandinavia, women choose STEM at a lower rate than in places like the US where they are agonising over the lack of women in STEM. So what if men in nursing? Or ballet, as in this article linked below. 


Tuesday, 17 April 2018

The “no true Scotsman” fallacy, becomes in Islam....

The takfiri-in-chief
... the "no true Muslim" fallacy.  That is, to divorce Islam from terrorism, you simply state that any terrorist, by definition, is not a Muslim.  Islam even has a word for this ruse: takfir. 
And Erdogan is a practiced takfiri.
Here he is in action, in Turkey's oldest English language newspaper, Hurriyet Daily News.
Terrorist acts by herds of killers such as DEASH, Boko Haram, al-Shabbab, and the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization [FETÖ] have hurt Muslims and also give opportunities to anti-Islamic circles,” Erdoğan said.
“The innocence of Muslims slaughtered by those organizations is overlooked and our religion and the believers of Islam are held responsible for those atrocities,” he added 
Notice how he defines out of Islam any group that engages in terrorism.  By this ruse, Islam is cleared and anyone engaging in terrorism is by definition not a Muslim.  They may say they are, but they're not.  See the "no true Scotsman" fallacy.  These are "no true Muslims".
And in doing so, he certainly fools a lot of people in the west.  Many of whom wish to be fooled; for they wish, deeply desire, that Islam is indeed a "Religion of Peace".
But when you educate yourself about Islam -- when you read the Islamic Trinity of the Koran, the Hadith and the Sirah -- you quickly learn that it's not a religion of peace; quite the opposite, at its core it requires the actions of ISIS, Boko Haram, al-Shabab, and the rest of the dozens of terrorist groups acting in the name of Islam.  It requires that Muslims fight the infidel, the kaffir, to establish the rule of Allah in the world.
ISIS set it all out in their glossy magazine, Dabiq, in a famous/infamous article in their August 2016 issue: "Why we hate you and why we fight you".  Here's a summary in Huffpo.  And here is Sam Harris reading from the magazine.  And btw, ISIS really is Islamic.  Don't believe me?  Read Graeme Wood, an expert on Islam and Islamism, here in The Atlantic, in March 2015

Sunday, 15 April 2018

China’s Ant Financial shows cashless is king

China's Ant Financial shows cashless is king
Ant Financial is a spin off from Alibaba, the world's largest online retailer (no, its not Amazon...). Grafting the finance company to a retail company is a uniquely Chinese thing and is set to make it the largest company in the world. 
Consider that in one 24-hour period last November Alibaba and Ant did $US 25 billion in turnover, over a billion per hour. 
This is one of the "becauses" in answer to the "whys": why is China burgeoning and why is it now one of the most interesting countries in the world. 
I've thought and said before that you can divide the world into two*: the builders and the destroyers. The builders broadly include the West and Asia - mainly China. And the destroyers are pretty much all the countries making up the OIC. 
Check out the chart above from the article below in the Financial Times. How freaking amazing is *that*!? Where China is compared to the rest of the world. It's China first, daylight second. 
*Mao Tse-tung said "yi fen wei er" : One divides into two. His rip-off of Hegelian dialectics. But think of it: male and female, left and right, Liberal and Labour, Republican and Democrat. Those who divide the world into two and those that don't....

China's Ant Financial shows cashless is king

The payments company has quickly become one of the most valuable in the world, but could face obstacles abroad


Don Weinland in Hong Kong and Sherry Fei Ju in Beijing

When Alibaba founder Jack Ma carved out his payments business from the ecommerce giant in 2010, he pulled off a coup with multibillion-dollar implications.

Suggesting that the Chinese government would not allow foreign investors to control a central part of the country's payments system, he told Yahoo and SoftBank — then Alibaba's biggest shareholders — that they could no longer have a stake in the Alipay business. Instead, Mr Ma took complete control of the new company.

The true impact of this manoeuvre became apparent this week with the news that Ant Financial, the Alibaba financial arm that grew out of the original Alipay business, is preparing to launch a $9bn private fundraising round ahead of its much anticipated initial public offering, according to people familiar with the matter.

That fundraising is expected to give Ant Financial a jaw-dropping valuation of around $150bn, making it the world's most highly valued unlisted technology group. To put it into perspective, that means that investors believe Ant Financial is worth 50 per cent more than Goldman Sachs.

Coinciding with the heightened tension over a possible US-China trade war, the news underlined the emergence over the past decade of a generation of Chinese technology companies that have the scale, expertise and firepower to compete with US rivals.

Ant Financial chart

The Ant Financial story also demonstrates the way that China, the second-biggest economy in the world, has embraced the shift towards a cashless society more enthusiastically than Europe or the US. Consumers used Alipay last year to make $8.7tn in payments, according to Barclays.

"These companies are like Facebook if it had a bank on top of it and everyone had a bank account [with Facebook]," says Joe Ngai, managing partner for greater China at McKinsey. "There is really nothing like this in the west."

Ant Financial is one of the most striking symbols of the last decade of Chinese capitalism. With $230bn under management the company has the world's largest money market fund. It controls one of the largest credit scoring systems in the world, collecting data on its hundreds of millions of users in China. Now a multinational which has inked deals around the world, its operations also include a bank, an insurer and a lending platform for small businesses.

To investors, eager to take part in the fundraising, including Temasek, the Singaporean investment fund, the company is a proxy for China's economic future.

Alibaba founder Jack Ma with the actor Nicole Kidman during the lavish Singles Day celebration held in Shanghai last November © Reuters

Ant Financial is now one of the backbones of consumption in China. Including its rival Tencent, the two companies make up more than 90 per cent of the country's $16tn annual mobile payments market.

The company benefits by being part of the broader Alibaba empire, which is blazing its own trail in ecommerce. Since 2009, Alibaba has held Single's Day, a digital shopping festival to promote spending on the Hangzhou-based company's online mall, called Taobao. At the event last year, which featured appearances by actor Nicole Kidman and musician Pharrell Williams, it approached $25bn in online sales in a 24-hour period.

Those sales are conducted on Alibaba's shopping platform, but the payments for most of the purchases are made through Ant Financial. Analysts describe Alipay as the glue that holds together Alibaba's online shopping empire.

Alipay started as an online escrow service in 2004 that allowed merchants and shoppers to send and receive payments but, more importantly, it gave shoppers a means to claim back refunds if they felt cheated on a sale, providing a shimmer of confidence in a marketplace devoid of trust.

The $150bn valuation will lift Ant close to the $168bn market capitalisation that Alibaba achieved when it launched its record-breaking $25bn IPO in 2014. Analysts say the valuation is based on far more than just Ant's online payments; their attention, rather, is on its ubiquity in China and its ability to utilise the data of daily life.

The evidence of its business and that of Tencent are visible on nearly every street corner in cities around China. In Beijing, Shanghai or Shenzhen, young people seldom use cash to pay for coffee, fast food or even daily groceries. Instead they scan two-dimensional QR bar codes with their phones that process the payment via Alipay or Tencent's WeChat Pay.

Ant Financial chart

"In China most of the offline daily consumption scenarios, such as dining, transportation, beauty, convenience stores, have been enabled with mobile payment via QR code scanning," Gregory Zhao, an analyst at Barclays, wrote in a report earlier this month.

Mr Zhao valued Ant Financial at $155bn based on a projection of net operating profits after taxes of $11.7bn by 2021. Increasingly, Ant's income will be generated not by Alipay but by the other units in its portfolio, such as its money market fund and its lending operation, he says.

Yu'E Bao, the money market fund, highlights the breakthrough nature of some of Ant's businesses. When it was launched in 2013, it allowed customers to move their balances on the payment platform — as little as Rmb1 ($0.16) — into a fund paying interest as high as 7 per cent. Within a year it had taken in Rmb570bn in assets under management to become China's largest money market fund, and last year it was crowned the largest in the world.

Sesame Credit, Ant's credit scoring business, pulls data from users across its spectrum of businesses, including information about which users buy what, who repays debts and which clients save more than others. That data can be analysed by the company's lending platforms, which give loans to both consumers and to small businesses. By better understanding their customers, analysts say Ant Financial is able to make more profitable lending decisions.

Alipay and WeChat Pay are fighting bitterly for the future of these markets. But Alipay has retained a strong lead with 54.3 per cent of mobile payments at the end of 2017 compared to WeChat Pay's 38.2 per cent, according to research group Analysys.

An Alibaba booth shows the 'smile to pay' system during the 2017 CES technology trade show © Getty

"Competition is intensifying as the biggest players jostle among themselves and face off with smaller start-ups, but everyone will be taking a piece of a bigger pie because the market is growing so much," says Adrian Seto, Accenture's senior director of innovation and financial technology in Asia-Pacific.

Talk of Ant's valuation is a painful reminder to Yahoo, now controlled by Verizon, of its loss of the company.

Yahoo bought a 40 per cent share of Alibaba for $1bn in 2005. In early 2011, Alibaba announced that the US internet group's investment no longer included Alipay, which had been surgically removed nine months earlier from Alibaba and set up in a separate company under the control of Mr Ma.

Yahoo's share price fell by nearly 10 per cent in a single day following the news. Analysts at the time calculated that Alipay made up about $1.7bn of Yahoo's $24bn market value. Mr Ma chalked up the move to regulatory requirements from the Chinese government. The restructuring was necessary at the time, he said, because the presence of foreign investors could have held up the allotment of a payments license to Alipay.

An agreement was eventually reached where Alibaba was guaranteed 37.5 per cent of the future profits of Alipay or a payment of $2bn-$6bn in the event of an IPO, something that continued to give Yahoo exposure to Alipay. Under its new valuation, a 40 per cent stake in Ant Financial would now be worth $60bn.

The legacy of the incident lives on as Ant Financial prepares to take on new foreign investors through private funding and an eventual IPO.

Ant Financial's QR code at a fish stall inside MC Box Po Tat market in Hong Kong © Bloomberg

The FT reported last year that Ant had pushed back its planned IPO to late 2018 or 2019 due to problems securing regulatory approvals. To allow crucial payments infrastructure to potentially fall into the hands of foreign investors, Ant will need an explicit blessing from Beijing — something that has yet to materialise in the public domain.

The fact that Temasek plans to invest in Ant in the new fundraising round suggests that the company could be closer to getting approval for having major foreign investors on its register.

Despite its dramatic growth within China, Ant Financial's efforts to expand overseas have been much slower — and in some cases have faced the same issue that caused its bust-up with Yahoo.

Since 2015 it has bought or made significant investments in 11 overseas companies, according to data from Thomson Reuters. In Pakistan, for example, Ant announced plans in March to buy a microfinance institution for $184m. The same month it said it would spend $200m on a media group in India.


But its biggest overseas gambit collapsed in January when its $1.2bn bid for Dallas-based payments group MoneyGram International was blocked by US regulators. The buyout would have made Ant an important player in the US payments system. However, fears over a Chinese company controlling the personal financial data of US clients ultimately killed the agreement.

"That's a huge hit to their confidence," says one banker close to the deal. Eight years after the move to squeeze out Yahoo from Ant, it was also a reminder that politics can hinder Mr Ma's plans for the company outside of China.

Additional reporting by Lucy Hornby in Beijing

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Abdel Bari Atwan | Dateline London

Surely it's time to call time on Abdel Bari Atwan. This insufferable ranter has been granted a very generous run on your Dateline London. 
Is the U.K. so bereft of International media commenters that it has to fall back on this opinionated fool each week?  
Please, replace this face!
Peter Forsythe

Saturday, 14 April 2018

I was wrong: Hong Kong does need domestic helpers for elderly care | Peter Kammerer | SCMP | April 10


Good to see Peter Kammerer, senior writer at the South China Morning Post, admit that he was wrong.  He now makes exactly the points I made in my letter to the Post which was published on 7th December.
But I do wonder: why does it take a personal experience — his elderly mother needing household care — to change his mind?  Why could he not have empathised with others in the situation he now finds himself in, and done so before the fact?  It seems that too many people are ready to denounce others without thinking.  In his case, let's not forget that he called it "laughable" that people should want to employ domestic helpers to help with elderly relatives.  And that domestic helpers in Hong Kong were "slaves".  Yes, "slaves"!  Utter nonsense.
Still, it's good that he's come around and had the integrity to publish in full the eating of his humble pie.

PF, etc

Don’t Blame Tips for Sexual Harassment - WSJ


Dawn Lafreeda argues against doing away with the system of tipping in US restaurants, to be balanced by higher base wages. She claims servers would be worse off and would object to the change. As an owner-operator of 81 restaurants her views certainly deserve respect.  

But I find them odd. I live here in Hong Kong where tipping is purely voluntary and in fact rare. Instead, restaurants usually add a 10% Service fee to the bill. This seems to work to everyone's satisfaction, servers, customers and owners alike. By contrast we find it discomforting to deal with America's tipping system. Judging by Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm, many Americans do as well!
Perhaps Ms Lafreeda ought to treat herself to a holiday in Hong Kong to check out how our FnB system works here — which is, in short, very well. 
Pf, etc

Anti Missile-Strike Voices on the Right

Some of the loudest voices against Trump's strikes on Syria are on the Right.
Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingram, Fox News Anchors, and Kat Timpf, sometime Fox News commenter, are all strident in their criticism of Trump's move to shoot at Syria — so far missile attacks on three airports in response to Assad's chlorine attacks on civilians.
Hardly the stance of a network often lambasted for being "the PR arm of the Trump Administration"

Tethered to a Raging Buffoon Called Trump

Roger Cohen in Full Monty.
Makes for fun reading ....
(Though he's been a bit crazy recently...)
Comes just as we're hearing of missile strikes in Syria — to three airports ...

Friday, 13 April 2018

Harry's Place » What is the Israel Palestine Conflict Really about?

None of what she says will be news to many, but Einat Wilf does a rather nice tour d'horizon, I thought. In the end it's "power over time". 
From the comments at Harry's Place :
Very good. My only niggle is that she failed to say that there had always been Jews in the region - both pre Zionist (say,1890s) Palestine and in the Arab world itself more widely. While small in numbers Jews never "left" either Middle East generally or the Levant specifically.

The Jewish State Has a Special Duty to Defend Syrians | New York Times | Ronen Bergman

Syria is a sorry mess for which Obama has the major responsibility. 
To this day Obama says he's "proud" of what he "achieved" after Assad had crossed Obama's own Red Line. Obama claims Assad destroyed Syria's chemical stocks without the US having had to fire a single shot.  But as Obama knew then, and as John Kerry has admitted since, he was lying; Assad destroyed only those chemicals that he'd acknowledged having — not those that he'd hidden (and both Obama and Kerry knew this at the time!). AND Assad hadn't been required to destroy any chlorine at all because chlorine is used in many innocent industrial processes — and in your backyard pool.... And it's chlorine that's been used most recently to kill Syrian civilians. 
Chlorine used by an Assad emboldened by Obama's failure of nerve and his known duplicity. 
This is staggering when you think about it. Pure deception and duplicity by Obama. Yet he continues to prance around the world grinningly untouched, fawned upon by the good and mighty... and Hollywood celebs. 
Whether Trump can do any better is moot. As this article below points out, the situation is considerably more complex than it was before Obama's Red Line. Complexity is not a Trump strong suit.  
And so it falls to Israel....
Ronen Bergman argues that Israel has an historical and moral duty to help protect Syrians from Assad. And has the capacity to do so. 
I wonder if you agree with it. 

Thursday, 12 April 2018

The migrant crisis could cost the German taxpayer 1,000,000,000,000 euros (That’s a TRILLION)

The accepted narrative, at least on the left, is that migrants are always and everywhere a net positive benefit. I've doubted that for some time, and the research shows very mixed outcomes. Key variables are the source of migrants and their education. In the case of recent surges to Europe there's the additional hypocrisy by refugee supporters that these waves are indeed refugees, whereas they are about 80% economic migrants. In short queue-jumpers. 
This piece, in the Voice of Europe estimates the lifetime cost to Germany alone of the migrants already arrived to be One Trillion euros. They are uneducated and from countries with cultural mindsets inimical to liberal western societies. 
In his autobiography, "In search of the truth", famous German economist Hans-Werner Sinn says the migrant crisis could cost the country almost one trillion euros, Focus reports. Sinn is a former advisor of Angela Merkel and retired president of the IFO Institute for Economic Research.Germany accepted 1.5 million migrants since 2015 and Sinn says they are not dentists, lawyers and nuclear scientists, but mostly underqualified immigrants. According to him, these people can never repay what they have received from the German welfare state during their lifetimes.

New York Times has problems with people being against Jihad

The way of the apologist for Islam: ignore Islam's bigotries
It's an odd feeling when you read an article in which the author does this: sets out a number of propositions that you're clearly supposed to find wrong and horrifying; to which you're supposed to mutter to yourself "how terrible!", but which in reality you think (or at least I do) "well those observations are spot on!".
One such recently in the New York Times an article by Laurie Goodstein, Pompeo and Bolton Appointments Raise Alarm Over Ties to Anti-Islam Groups.

Here's a few of the statements that Goodstein clearly thinks -- with no evidence -- are beyond the pale, but which are in fact true:
Mr. Bolton and Mr. Pompeo both have ties to individuals and groups promoting a worldview that regards Islam not so much as a religion, but as a political ideology that is infiltrating the United States and other Western countries with the goal of imposing Shariah law, the Muslim legal code. These groups believe that the vehicle for this takeover is the Muslim Brotherhood, and they allege that American mosques, civic organizations and leaders and even government officials who are Muslims are suspected of being Muslim Brotherhood operatives.
But it's true that some Muslims are trying to impose Sharia in the United States. The Muslim Brotherhood has been explicit about this:
[Supporters] must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions (From “ An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North America,” by Mohamed Akram, May 19, 1991.)  Via Jihad Watch

The founder of ACT, Brigitte Gabriel, has written that “the purest form of Islam” is behind the terrorist attacks: “It’s not radical Islam. It’s what Islam is at its core.”

Brigitte Gabriel is a brave woman who has suffered at the hands of Islamists who attacked her family when they lived in Lebanon.   She is 100% correct that "It's not radical Islam.  It's what Islam is at its core".  Just read the foundation documents of Islam.  The Islamic Trinity: The Koran, the Hadith and the Sirah.

Also have a look at Gabriel in action here; she's spot on, and powerful:

Both Mr. Pompeo and Mr. Bolton have appeared frequently on the radio show of Frank Gaffney Jr., the president and founder of the Center for Security Policy, a think tank that argues that mosques and Muslims across America are engaged in a “stealth jihad” to “Islamize” the country by taking advantage of American pluralism and democracy.

But it's true that 80% of mosques in the United States are radical. That's the result of four separate studies, including one by an Imam.

There's more, which I'll leave to Robert Spencer at Jihad Watch to finish off.  Taking the opportunity to say that Spencer is by no means a bigot, or Islamophobe, or xenophobe or racist.  His site does what it says: records the daily examples of Jihad around the world.  He's been doing that for many years.  I've watched him in innumerable videos and read most of his books.  He is hugely knowledgeable about Islam, and careful, always to specify that his criticisms are of Islam, the ideology, not of individual Muslims...

MercatorNet: Reviewing the record of 21st Century Islam

This is a rather good review of Islam in the 21st century, by the Jesuit James Schall. Balanced, sane and unhysterical, but concerning for all that, given the reality of the Islamic threat to the west.
> Islam is unabashedly a religion that affirms that everyone should be Muslim. Indeed, it assumes that everyone is born Muslim. It does not hesitate, when it sees the opportunities, to expand by what are considered the best means available to achieve this purpose wherever it is not successfully resisted. Many minor "wars" and skirmishes on Islamic world frontiers have this increase of influence as their cause.

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Wednesday, 11 April 2018

The Failures of Anti-Trumpism

Good article by David Brooks that appears spot on to me. Especially his comment "Part of the problem is that anti-Trumpism has a tendency to be insufferably condescending". He then mentions a recent academic analysis and could have added Hillary. She was shockingly condescending in her recent outing in India.

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Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Viktor Orban’s Hungary Victory: Country Embraces His National Conservatism | National Review

This is quite the best analysis I've seen of the Hungarian elections and of Viktor Orban's place and influence in Europe and its bureaucracy. (He above).
Better, yes, than anything I've seen or read in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the BBC, Fox, CNBC or CNN.
Go on then, find fault with it.

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