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Alberta Politics: Was the Senate report on ‘countering’ the threat of terrorism intended to incite hatred for political gain?

PHOTOS: Conservative members of the Senate of Canada answer questions about their “interim report” on countering terrorist threats to Canada. Actual Conservative Senators may not appear exactly as illustrated – but close enough, unfortunately. Below: Liberal senator Grant Mitchell of Alberta, who dissented from the report; former British MP George Galloway, banned from Canada after […]

The post Was the Senate report on ‘countering’ the threat of terrorism intended to incite hatred for political gain? appeared first on Alberta Politics.

Bill Longstaff: ISIS and the grand imam—not so different

That ISIS is a scourge of major proportions is agreed on across the globe. Driven by some religious mania, they persecute other religions, behead infidels, burn enemies alive—all with sickening zeal and an obsession with publicity. Other Muslims are as outraged as any of us. A host of Arab governments and Muslim religious authorities have expressed vigorous condemnation.

For example, Sheikh

Politics, Re-Spun: Stephen Harper: Racist AND a Hypocrite!

Just WHO should be covering up?

I recall once that Stephen Harper believed in championing religious freedom. Except for people he doesn’t like.

Now he’s appealing a federal court ruling allowing people to exercise their religious freedom by becoming citizens while not publicly removing their niqab.

But why, you ask?

Because Canada is transparent, open, equal and just. And Stephen Harper is our leader, so he too is transparent, open, equal and just.

Except he’s not. At all. He’s a racist and a hypocrite. Read on!

“I believe, and I think most Canadians believe that it is — it is (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: A look into Sam Harris and Islam – Liberal Viewer

Some beliefs are so dangerous that it may be ethical to kill people for believing them. – Sam Harris.

This is a dangerous quote from Mr.Harris because it muddles the line between action and intent. How can there be any sort of dialogue when one faction can be singled out for death for nothing that they have done, but their beliefs.

Consider how easy it would be for opponents of US policy to follow this same doctrine – would they too be taking ethical action?

Harris, in this context, is not adding clarity to the complex (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: About That Islamic Terrorism, Who Are We Kidding?

Well those damned Muslims have us in hysterics now.  Rupert Murdoch says this is on all Muslims.  Bill Maher says ditto.

But wait.  There are two strains of Muslims – Sunni and Shia.  Our Muslims of choice, those we consider our allies, are Sunni – Egypt, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, that bunch. The Muslims we normally despise and distrust are those other guys, the Shiites.

So, let’s step back and look at all this Muslim terrorism that has us in such a state. Let’s start with Osama bin Laden.  Sunni.  Al Qaeda, Sunni.  ISIS, Sunni.  Those Muslims Obama keeps (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Oh, This is Rich

You might remember media mogul, ‘Reptilian Rupert’ Murdoch, as the guy who denied any personal responsibility whatsoever for the criminal enterprise he operated, the deservedly late News of the World.  For Rupe, the buck stopped just short of himself.  Right, you rotten old bugger and why haven’t you taken a dirt nap by now anyway?

Now the crotchety old fart has come out to contend that all Muslims – the lot of them, the overwhelming majority of peaceful Muslims included – must share responsibility for the Paris massacre at Charlie Hebdo.

Bill Maher last night took his own shot at (Read more…)

Bill Longstaff: The legitimate anger of the jihadis

As the season of wallowing in warrior worship wanes, we might think upon those warriors we love to hate—the young Muslim men from around the globe migrating (or trying to migrate) to the Middle East to fight for ISIS.

Their motivation is much discussed. Some, alienated from their society, seem driven by nothing more than a desperate search for meaning in their lives. The mentally-unbalanced,

The Canadian Progressive: Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s Speech on Ottawa Shooting

Here’s the prepared text of Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s address to the nation following the fatal shootings at the National War Memorial and Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday.

The post Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s Speech on Ottawa Shooting appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: The Closer You Look …

The closer one looks at the ISIS thing, the more it starts looking like a sectarian war in the Middle East.  Yesterday in the Globe and Mail, Robert Fowler very nicely articulated the problem with short term solutions to the mess in Iraq, and today I spotted a really interesting read describing some of the reasons behind the apparent lack of response from several Arab states, in particular Saudi Arabia.

As is typical of these situations in the region, it is starting to become apparent that for all of its bloodiness, ISIS is simply another sectarian feud spilling out (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Critical thinkers, Take Heart

Dispelling misconceptions is never well-received in the media:

Recommend this Post

drive-by planet: Following AKP win Erdogan to ‘enter the lair’ of ‘traitors’: war against Syria in the works?

 Top: Erdoğan after win flanked by son Bilal / Beneath left: Fethullah Gülen

Following a solid win for the AKP in the nationwide local elections in Turkey, PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, declared victory and made pointed threats directed at his opponents. He stated his intention to “enter the lair” of his enemies who he has branded “terrorists” and “an axis of evil.” He appears ready to put an end to what he regards as internal treachery… in his words “a state within a state.”

This is a dagger pointed at US-based Fethullah Gülen and his Hizmet supporters (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: The DWR Sunday Religious Disservice – Featuring Dark Matter2525

The title of this video is “what if you’re wrong” and yes atheist friends DM2525 does touch on that venerated old chestnut of Pascal’s Wager, but like M. Night – Can’tmakeagoodmovietosafehislife- with a twist – there are questions and consequences that the deluded must face.

If your god happens to be the right one, how is it merciful to condemn some 5 million other people to hell? How do you know your god is the “right” one, given the sectarian nature of the christian and muslim faiths you might be on the right team, but sitting in the wrong (Read more…)

drive-by planet: Al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria opens school for kids in Daraa

 Screenshots from al-Qaeda school video

Al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria, Jabhat al-Nusra, isn’t just in the business of jihad. It has set up “education” programs to indoctrinate Syrian children. On the walls of a jihad-friendly school in Daraa you don’t find any colorful artwork or alphabets, instead there are posters celebrating jihadist martyrs and verses from the Qur’an… makes Assad’s schools seem almost wildly progressive by comparison.

The video beneath shows the typical routine. Kids show up to recite passages of the Qur’an by rote and learn about jihad. The curriculum includes instruction about weapons. The next stage for some (Read more…)

Molly'sBlog: Syria- A Short History

                                                                                                                                                                                  SYRIA – A SHORT HISTORY By Phillip K. Hitti, Colier Books, New York 1961   This book is an abridgement of the author’s previous work ‘History of Syria Including Lebanon and Palestine’ (1951). Before the present ‘Arab Spring’ and the subsequent civil war in Syria this country wasn’t of great interest to the average person. This had not, however, always been the case. In the past Syria and its Lebanese gateway had at time been very much in the centre of events.        The author opens with a brief synopsis of Syria’s history, and continues with an (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Molly’sBlog: Syria- A Short History

Terahertz: Two sides of a coin

There is no inherent contradiction in viewing fundamentalist religious headgear as misogynistic while still supporting an individual’s religious freedom, so why does the media keep painting it as such?

The Charter of Quebec Values is creating a huge, perhaps irreparable rift in the province’s women’s movement. For feminists, there is no halfway position over the proposed ban on religious symbols worn by public employees.

On one side are those for whom the Muslim hijab (or any kind of religious headscarf) is anathema because it’s seen as a symbol of female submission. On the other side are those who believe that (Read more…)

Terahertz: Closure of Muslim Free School highlights folly of government policy

A bit of welcome news came today that British government inspectors have forced the temporary closure of an Islamic free school over “health and safety issues.” The school promises to re-open soon.

Over the past few years, the British government has been increasingly trying to solve its broken education system through a combination of market-based reforms. Key among them have been the opening of many “free schools,” that is, fully government-funded schools that are free from the control of local authorities (locally-elected school boards).

Many of these free schools are religiously-motivated and are permitted to have discriminatory admission policies (Read more…)

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Calgary Sun Plays The Racist Card …

It’s never been a big secret that lurking just underneath the surface of Canada’s right wing politics is a religiously-inspired vein of racism.  It reared its head back in the late 1980s when the debate over turbans in the RCMP was at full volume, and the Reform Party voted to ban turbans as part of the RCMP uniform, and frankly has never really gone away. In the Calgary Sun today, we find a column decrying the alleged silence over various attacks on Christians in the Muslim world. More or less, the reasoning in the column seems to be that (Read more…)

THE FIFTH COLUMN: The Bottom Line on the Parti Québécois Proposed Values Charter

I was going to write a long blog post on this but since so much has been written about it I think this captures the spirit and intent of the proposal succinctly.

The bottom line on Quebec’s proposed values charter is that you can visit a hospital named after a saint with a crucifix in the lobby and be guaranteed not to be treated by a Muslim doctor in a hijab because they want to remove

drive-by planet: Woolwich attack on British soldier Lee Rigby was not ‘terrorism’

The killing on an off-duty British soldier on a street in Woolwich, London, had all the ingredients loved by the tabloids… dark skinned Muslim assailants armed with knives and machete… a white well liked military man wearing a Help for Heroes shirt. Had to be an act of terrorism, right? When it became evident that the killing was politically motivated could there even be a shred of doubt?

Labeling the Woolwich incident “terrorism” says most about a political agenda. That the Woolwich attack was a calculated act targeting an off-duty British soldier during a time of war isn’t in question. (Read more…)

drive-by planet: Some Islamophobic new atheists as bad as Fox News on steroids

Atheist “fundamentalists” whose very existence seems predicated on their non-belief in God can be as extremist and narrow minded as the worst religious prig. They’re fixated, the way many extremists are, targeting any trace of faith with the blade of their remorseless skepticism. It’s one thing to have doubts about the existence of “God” as commonly understood… one thing to be skeptical. It’s another to make non-belief your raison d’etre… a weapon to attack religion and people of faith. 

New atheists aren’t “new”… they’re old… they’ve been around forever. Proof-obsessed, non-believing detractors who go beyond criticisms of organized religion (Read more…)

Progressive Proselytizing: Thank you Westboro Baptist Chuch

Westboro Baptish Church – made infamous for picketing military funeral in a protest against homosexual tolerance in America – has reached, unbelievably, a new low. They are now threatening to picket the funerals of victims of the Boston bombings, again for some incoherent homophobic reason. As disgusting as this all is, and as much as I feel for those who actually have to experience these bigots first hand in a moment of grief, there is, perhaps surprisingly, an upside. Indeed, I submit that there is a fairly strong positive social consequence of the wide spread attention that Westboro Baptist (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Bill Maher’s Anti-Islam Smear

On his RealTime programme last night, Bill Maher couldn’t wait to get into his shopworn, anti-Islam theme about the Muslim faith being unique in promoting violence.

As I listened to his diatribe I so wished I could ask him just one question.  Since the turn of this century, how many innocent Muslims have died at the hands of Christian forces and how many innocent Christians have perished at Muslim hands?

My guess is that the ratio would be at least several hundred to one and would utterly reduce Maher’s endless rant.

The fact is we’ve been putting the boots (Read more…)

drive-by planet: Video message for FEMEN: ‘saving Muslim women one bra strap at a time’

A Muslimah from Manchester, England, gets her message across in this funny yet pointed video in which she thanks FEMEN ‘from the bottom of her heart’ for showing her how to campaign for women’s rights:

My parents got it wrong, they seriously got it wrong…. they thought that by sending me to school… giving me an education…. they were giving me the skills I needed to make a difference in the world… really what they should have been teaching me is that the best way to campaign as a woman, the best way to be heard, is just to take

drive-by planet: FEMEN wants to ‘liberate’ Muslimahs

The Canadian Progressive: Human Rights Watch: Challenges for Rights After Arab Spring

The willingness of new governments to respect rights will determine whether those uprisings give birth to genuine democracy or simply spawn authoritarianism in new forms.