We don’t just report off-beat news, breaking news and digest the best and worst of the news media analysis and commentary. We give an original take on what happened and why. We add lols, satire, news photos and original content.
Faces of the day:
The 2014 Illinois State Fair butter cow is unveiled at the Illinois State Fairgrounds Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014, in Springfield, Ill. The sculpture depicts a cow being milked by a boy who is waving to a woman. The 500-pound bovine is made of unsalted butter. Built from scratch, it has been an unofficial mascot of the fair since the 1920s. Fair organizers have said they’re not changing security procedures after vandals threw paint on a butter cow at the Iowa state fair last year. The Illinois State Fair begins Friday, Aug. 8 and runs through Sunday, Aug. 17. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
The Art of Anti-Semitism: The Tricycle Theatre Only Admits Anti-Israel Jews While The National Prefers The Rich Ones
MANY words have been written about demands by London’s Tricycle Theatre that Jewish Film Festival sever all ties with the city’s Israeli embassy.
Indhu Rubasingham, the theatre’s artistic director, said the festival should not accept funding from “any party to the current conflict” between Israel and Hamas. She added the Tricycle had offered to fund the festival itself, in order to replace sponsorship from the Israeli Embassy in London.
The event has been hosted at the Tricycle for some years. But this year the boss wanted Israel excluded. Ms Rubasingham wanted the Jews who run the film week – which features film and debate from all sides – to refuse Israel’s money, some £1,400. She wanted them to hand back Israeli cash and join her in her moral stance against the country. Comply with her demands and these Jews would be allowed in. And the story of how the Jews of Jewish Film Week handed back Israel’s cash would fly.
FACES of the day:
Soaked pedestrians shelter from the rain under the Millennium Bridge, Southwark, London, as the remnants of Hurricane Bertha swept across parts of the country. Jonathan Brady/PA Wire
DID you hear Barack Obama making statement about Iraq airstrikes? Somewhere Bill Murray is waking up in a hotel room at 6AM to Sonny & Cher’s ‘I Got You Babe’.
WHY do protestor angry at Israel and the war with Hamas call the Jewish state and its people Nazis?
Alex Ross has a view:
Leaving aside the monstrousness of the Nazi comparison on both historical and moral grounds…you’d have though that these people could at least be a little more creative with their references. It’s not like the past century doesn’t offer up a whole range of references to genocide or barbarism…yet we don’t see placards saying “Israel = Khmer Rouge” or “Israel = Suharto’s Indonesia” or “Israel = al-Bahir’s Sudan”.
You’d almost think that they wanted to deliberately single out the most traumatic episode in Jewish history and use it as a means to taunt and berate.
What is most chilling is that these sentiments are not just consigned to a weird old man with a placard. I hear them from supposedly intelligent people over dinner in NW London. Why haven’t they [the Jews] learned from their own history?? As if the Shoah was simply some pedagogic exercise to make Jews behave better.
Other couch their accusation as “irony”:
OUR politicians are at last speaking about the terror, torture, mass murder and genocide being meted out upon Christians and other minorities by the Islamic State in Iraq, writes Cranmer. Their assessment of the situation ranges from “completely unacceptable” to “barbaric”. Cardinal Vincent Nicholsastutely calls it “a persecution of immense proportions”. The Archbishop of Canterbury calls it “evil”. And not only is it evil, but “part of an evil pattern around the world where Christians and other minorities are being killed and persecuted for their faith”. And he refers specifically to Northern Nigeria, Syria, South Sudan and the Central African Republic.
It doesn’t take a genius to work out that his subject is radical Islam and the malignant Saudi-backed Salafist strain.
DO British Airport workers read the Daily Mirror? We ask becsue today the Star leads with news of a strike over Ebola fears:
The story goes that baord staff are “Terrified”:
An insider told the Daily Star Sunday: “There is panic. It takes one person to come into this country with Ebola and all hell will break loose. Workers are being told to look for passengers who appear unwell and to raise the alarm immediately. But given how dangerous it seems to be, that doesn’t seem enough.
“People are scared and you can’t blame them. Many aren’t confident we are going to be kept safe and this has led to strike talk among some staff.”
MEANWHILE….in Sevenoaks, Kent:
ARE you an anti-Semite? If so, join the band of the righteous. These are good times. Israel is at war with Hamas in Gaza. Hamas are keen to take the war to Israel, firing rockets into the country. But they lack the ground troops and air cover to launch an invasion. Israel has the guns and the personnel to fight the war on Hamas’ turf.
It’s a foreign war between two unequally armed sides. The best outcome would be for the Islamists and Messianics to be forced to the extremes and for the people to unite as one State. But that’s unlikely.
So. We look at the now. And we see that this war has Jews with the better weaponry. And that upsets some onlookers in the West. Why? Brendan O’Neill wonders:
Such are the double standards over Israel, so casually entrenched is the idea that Israeli militarism is more bloody and insane than any other kind of militarism, that many Western liberals now call on their own rulers to condemn or even impose sanctions against Israel. That is, they want the invaders and destroyers of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and elsewhere to rap Israel’s knuckles for bombing Gaza. It’s like asking a great white shark to tell off a seal for eating a fish. America must ‘rein in Israel’, we are told. ‘The international community should intervene to restrain Israel’s army’, says a columnist for the Guardian, and by ‘international community’ he means ‘a meeting of the UN Security Council’ – the Security Council whose permanent members are the US, UK and France, who have done so much to destabilise and devastate vast swathes of the Middle East and North Africa over the past decade; Russia, whose recent military interventions in Georgia and Chechnya suggest it is hardly a devotee of world peace; and China, which might not invade other countries but is pretty adept at brutally suppressing internal dissent. On what planet could nations whose warmongering makes the current assault on Gaza look like a tea party in comparison seriously be asked to ‘rein in’ Israel? On a planet on which Israel is seen as different, as worse than all others, as more criminal and rogue-like than any other state.
THIS is one of those little stories that can make you very worried indeed about the future of the human race. Some Twitter hashtag about Gaza (the place being bombed) was mistaken by fans of retired alcoholic footballers to be about Gazza. Confusion ensues:
Fans of former England footballer Paul Gascoigne, popularly known as ‘Gazza’, were left confused and fearing for his future as a Free Gaza campaign took off online.
Tweets with the hashtag #freegaza have been trending on Twitter in response to the violence in the Middle East, with users using their posts to urge Israeli forces to stop their assault on the Gaza Strip. The conflict, which started on July 8, has led to the deaths of more than 1,200 people.
But followers of the troubled player, who has become known for his battles with alcohol and drugs, mistakenly thought that he had been arrested and that the campaign was in support of his freedom.
ON Israel and Gaza, Shmuel Aweida, an Israeli Arab pastor of a Hebrew-speaking Israeli Messianic congregation, writes to everyone:
Dear so-called “peace-seeking people”, “pro-ceasefire people” and “peace and reconciliation activists”,
Forgive me for not taking your nice dreams and peace demonstrations and wishes so seriously… People who didn’t care about the suffering people in Gaza under the Hamas regime for years can’t really be considered morally superior to any IDF soldier that’s on the ground there now. You might seem to be better and kinder, but not really… Sorry…
If you really care, then free Gaza from Hamas and other Islamic jihadist organizations! How can you feel sorry for the innocent children hurt accidentally by Israel when you don’t care that the same children grow up to learn to hate intentionally? You claim to feel sorry for the hungry children while ignoring the poison they are fed every single day at Hamas and Fatah schools and on TV.
How can you feel sorry for the women crying now when you didn’t care that they’ve been humiliated, discriminated and even raped and killed regularly for years?
Here’s another thing I don’t get:
These kind, sympathetic, peace-loving people who automatically want and pray for a ceasefire in Israel’s war(s) against the evil, anti-Semitic, anti-human, blood-thirsty terrorist organizations like Hamas (not against the Palestinians) – they make Israel never finish “the job” and then on the top of it all, their governments and NGOs send billions of dollars of “aid” to this corrupt evil system.
And guess what happens time and again – instead of feeding the hungry with food, they feed themselves with weapons. Instead of teaching the children math, they teach them hate and jihad against the Jews. Instead of building houses and hospitals above the ground, they build terror-tunnels under the ground.
The tunnels found in the past days have cost hundreds of millions of US dollars to build! The IDF blew up millions of your money, dear nice people in the naive West!
I’m not saying that Israel is without any fault here, but sometimes I really wonder if the Palestinians’ best friends are in reality the ones that maintain their oppression under this Islamic regime?
I simply don’t get it! Someone here needs to get a better grasp of reality!
As much as I hate this war and the price that’s being paid by our dear soldiers and the innocent civilians on both sides, I hate the fact that it’s necessary! May the needed pain of war bear good fruit of peace for all! May the Lord of Hosts and Armies give us His Shalom!
There has been quite a lot of activity in the social media in the past month. I was disappointed and frustrated of some my Facebook friends and the level of naiveté and blindness with regard to the real situation and the roots of the conflicting the Middle East.
Do they really not see what the Hamas is all about or what Islam really is? Are they all so blind to what’s happening around us in Syria, Iraq and all over? Don’t they see what Hamas is doing to the poor population that lives under this terror daily? I don’t know why I keep being surprised…
To my anti-Arab friends:
But what really surprised me was that, with regard to this operation in Gaza, the hatred, revenge and racism that filled the [Facebook] statuses of those who support Israel.
They expressed such joy over going to war and causing destruction (a joy I’m glad our leadership doesn’t have). The fact they quoted Bible verses didn’t make it any less stinking. So I threw those people out of my Facebook just like I did with others that posted pornography and other disgusting stuff. Trash is trash is trash.
Praying that God may protect our soldiers who are serving us and giving their lives for us – proud of the moral code of the IDF and the legitimacy of this necessary operation. Praying for those making the tough decisions – but with much more humility.
I guess we need to pray that we’ll all guard our hearts from hatred, revenge, racism, pride and other destructive things that do not honor us, nor the God of Israel.
Photo: Pro-Palestinian display a Palestinian flag with the Hamas sign during a banned demonstration in support of Gaza at Place de la Republique in Paris, France, Saturday, July 26, 2014. French police fired tear gas as clashes broke out at a banned pro-Gaza demonstration on Saturday as thousands defied a ban on the protest. The interior minister had earlier called on organizers of the Paris demonstration to observe the ban imposed to halt potential anti-Semitic violence. (AP Photo/Benjamin Girette)
The late and dearly beloved (to those of a certain age that is) Bernard Levin once wrote an entire column in The Times in praise of the Advertising Standards Authority’s existence. I do not have the great man’s eloquence but I would like to repeat that praise as a result of this decision over whether pyramid teabags are actually better than round ones. For it does make exactly the same point that he noted about the earlier adjudication over whose crisps were the crunchiest:
It is a debate that splits tea lovers – which tea bag makes the better cuppa. But now the Advertising Standard’s Authority has ruled that pyramid shaped bags are more effective than the more traditional flat, round tea bags when making a brew. The advertising watchdog has said that PG Tips has successfully shown the infusion of tea leaves in its pyramid shaped bags was more efficient than in round tea bag as used by rivals Tetley. It made the ruling after Tata Global Beverages, the makers of Tetley, complained to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) about a PG Tips TV advert starring Johnny Vegas and his sock puppet monkey. Tetley said the ad, which showed the difference in ‘brewing power’ between a pyramid and a round tea bag, was exaggerated and misleading to viewers.
How Glorious for out Happy little isle, that we have a department, an organisation, who can devote the time to deciding on these important matters. This must mean that we’ve solved all of the important problems, yes? We’ve dealt with housing for the poor, clothing for the naked, food for the starving, so that we can devote those precious scarce resources of society to deciding which shape of teabag infuses more quickly (do note, this decision is a matter of law now) or which crisp is crispier?
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Read the rest of this entry »
“A 73-year-old woman who was bitten by a police dog as it searched for a suspect in her garden has died in hospital, police said. Frail Irene Collins was attacked by the German shepherd on Wednesday inside her home in Penrith Road, Middlesbrough. Cleveland Police, which has already referred the matter to the police watchdog, expressed their “sincerest condolences”.”
Was innocent Mrs Collins killed by her frailty?
The Huffington Post illustrates the story with a picture of a police dog like the guilty (allegedly) attack dog. Which is not named but Fang springs to mind.
RACISTS have seized upon the situation in Israel and Gaza. Koplow spots goings on in Turkey:
Ankara’s mayor Melih Gökçek, fresh off the heels of tweeting out pro-Hitler sentiments, urged his government yesterday to shut down the Israeli embassyin Ankara, referring to it as “the despicable murderers’ consulate” and stating that “they are 100 times more murderous than Hitler.” Not to be outdone, Bülent Yıldırım, the odious head of the “humanitarian relief NGO” IHH – the same NGO that organized the Mavi Marmara flotilla – warned Jewish tourists (yes, he said Jewish rather than Israeli, and yes, that was deliberate on his part) not to show their faces in Turkey and threatened Turkish Jews that they would pay dearly for Israel’s actions in Gaza. …
I get the anger and frustration, and I see it personally from Turkish friends on my Facebook feed and my Twitter stream, who are furious with Israel not because they are Jew-hating anti-Semites but because they deplore the mounting civilian death toll in Gaza, which they see as disproportionate and excessive. … But there is a world of difference between criticizing Israel out of a deeply held difference of opinion versus comparing Israelis to Hitler, equating Israel with Nazi Germany, throwing around the term genocide, openly advocating violence against Israeli nationals and property, and threatening Jews over Israel’s behavior. It is completely beyond the pale, and anyone who cares a lick about liberal values should be denouncing it loud and clear without qualification.
A SINCERE apology from the Cumbernauld News And Kilsyth Chronicle.
#GazaJ19: On The Israel-Gaza March With Bigots, Humanitarians, Dead Baby Pornographers And Bullshitters
PEOPLE massed in London today to protest against Israel’s actions in Gaza. Many came to sue for peace. But their message of love was sullied by others who needed an excuse to call the Jewish state Nazis (a conniving insult that mocks Holocaust victims) and wanted genocide, demanding that Israel and, presumably, her inhabitants be annihilated for the good of all decent mankind:
At one point, a woman on the podium shouted “from the river to the sea” — a call for the elimination of Israel — and protesters responded by yelling “Palestine will be free.”
Heartfelt humanitarian concerns were much in evidence. But we also saw flags for the liberals and peaceniks of Hizbollah…
… and some classic Anti-semitism.
WAY back in 1973 Woody Allen did a movie called Sleeper, from which comes this little scene above. The idea was that he went to sleep for 200 years and thus has to learn how to deal with his new world that he wakes up in. Sorta a Woody Allen take on Rip Van Winkle.
THERE’S no two-ways about it – comics have been a bit white, male and hetero. Of course, that isn’t entirely the case, but chances are, your favourite superhero is a straight white guy.
However, everything is turning on its head. Iron Man is getting a new silver suit for a kick off. Okay, that’s not interesting. How about this – Thor is now a woman. It isn’t Thorette or Thorita. Thor is now a woman. About time there was another female leading role in comicsville.
And now, Captain America is red, white and blue… and black.
Marvel announced that Captain America’s mantle will be taken over by his long-time pal, the Falcon, the soaring superdude from Harlem (who is normally called Sam Wilson).
TRANSFER Balls: What news in the mainstream media of Real Madrid’s German midfielder Sami Khedira? Let’s look at the Daily Express’ reporting on the player’s move to Arsenal.
Daily Express, June 16 – and Khedira is a Gunner:
IT’S a common enough idea, that you need to practice at something for 10,000 hours to actually be any good at it. And that might well be true, too. However, the idea does sometimes (ie, in almost all of he UK education system) get mixed up with the idea that if you do 10,000 hours practice then you will be good at something. And that just ain’t true.
FROM the archives:
Christine Jorge, the ex-GI who became a woman, sits in a car in Mineola, N.Y., on Feb. 25, 1953, after taking test to qualify for a driver’s license. Observers said Christine is a good driver-after all, she once was a chauffeur.
THIS letter was sent by Barrowford Primary School to its leavers. The school in Nelson, Lancashire, apologises for the children’s education. It praises the things pupils aren’t tested on: their holiday destinations; languages spoken; musical instruments played; and how the children ‘wonder about the future’.
The school assures the leavers that not doing well in Ks2 tests is not the end of the world. In fact, they should be “proud” of whatever they scored, even it was a rubbish mark.
Children are more than poxy SATS score. Well, of course they are.
But it’s a bit soft, isn’t it? The letter fails to praise the children who did really well at maths, English and reading. In fact, they don’t get a mention.
TRANSFER Balls: So Toni Kroos is leaving Bayern Munich to play for Real Madrid. So says the Sun:
TONI KROOS is heading to Real Madrid – meaning Manchester United have missed out on one of their top targets. United had been hot on the heels of Bayern Munich schemer for some time as they looked to add some much-needed quality to their midfield.
YOU may have heard about the slow legalisation of cannabis in certain US states. First came medical marijuana, treatments for things like the nausea produced by chemotherapy, to reduce certain eye conditions and so on. Sadly, just desiring to get a buzz isn’t worthy of such medical treatment.
Then, in the face of deep opposition from the Feds, came a couple of States (Colorado and Washington) that have simply legal cannabis for all on sale.
Of course, someone was always going to go further and wouldn’t you know it that it’s the ultimate liberal gulag, Berkeley in California, that has done it. Now there’s free pot for the poor:
Dispensaries will have to give away free cannabis to very low-income folks, per the new regulations. The amount of free cannabis must equal 2 percent of a dispensary’s gross weight sold. The council specified Tuesday evening that first in line for the free pot would be Berkeley residents and collective members.