Islam & the West | An Arabic perspective

15 01 2011

An excellent youtuber is IslamicFarming, who has uploaded some of the most thought-provoking videos I’ve seen in a long time.  The one below contains an Arabian gentlemen who understands history better than some of our own.

I only wish I had more information regarding the guy.  He puts some of our own political minds to shame with his logic and reasoning.

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Recommendation | And a waffle

27 10 2010

What did you do in the war Daddy? is a take on an old WW2 call-up campaign and a very good one at that.  Also, I cannot recommend the following book enough.  Aldous “the only universe you power over is your own” Huxley, alleged Mason, Satanist, the lot, wonderful dystopian/utopian novel;  Brave New World.

If there is a plan, and there surely is, fail to prepare, prepare to fail an’ all that, then I think the unintended result whatever the original intentions will probably resemble something like this book.  Efficiency is key to survival, it is what separates the species and the individual alike.  How we can overcome nature’s temperament and beasts is due mainly to our ability to communicate and work as a team working from the same gameplan.

Every human being is capable of being a cog, and in the past, great personal sacrifices were made unwillingly but necessarily so others could perhaps enjoy another minute of life.  The social revolution of the late Victorian, Early Edwardian age was true progress.  After the war, every gift given has been a poisoned chalice, from the ‘free at the point of service’ NHS to the ‘free for all’  State Education.  ‘The mass replacement of cheaper cogs to plug up the gaps due to the killing fields in Europe and beyond was regressive.

Some human beings are born leaders, and I don’t mean the big-eared inbred nobility that have avoided the axe, I’m talking about your Horatios and Drakes.  A few become legends, King Arthur and Robin Hood to name but two, and to ensure the ladies don’t feel underrepresented, Britain’s Pagan Saint Boudicca.

Other human beings can be a nuisance but in the most part bearable.  A few have their moment in the sun, Edward Teach and Dick Turpin from our dark past yet we survived their thievery.  Some are despatched by the gallows while some don’t but justice has always been a fickle mistress.

Yet there are those with dark souls and darker hearts (baby-eating Satanists) who just cannot help themselves but be bad.  Many probably began with the most modest of intentions and just saw a hole that needed to be filled.  Then again, perhaps they were responsible for the hole in the first place???

The birth of thinking man spawned the geo-political hydra we see today.  Probably started with a few tribal heads at first yet with the wonders of modern gizmos and gadgets, has grown into the miliary-style ‘help the world‘ brigade we possess today.  Filled with the likes of the United Nations, NATO, European Union, United Kingdom and various extra admin zones, the African Congress, the Islamic one, the <insert cause here> Lobby Groups and the billions of idiots who think blindly that clap their hands in applause cos they’re getting something for nothing.

There’s always a catch though.  Always.





World | Another damnation report

3 06 2010

Even if the sun shrivelled up to a hundredth of its size I doubt the vested interests would drop their global pursuit of a global solution to the global problem of global warming.

Thinking about the BBC pension pot, Auntie Beeb brings us the news that the ‘Low-lying Pacific islands ‘growing not sinking’ but even after Associate Professor Paul Kench of Auckland University…

… says the islands are not in immediate danger of extinction.

“That rather gloomy prognosis for these nations is incorrect,” he said.

“We have now got the evidence to suggest that the physical foundation of these countries will still be there in 100 years, so they perhaps do not need to flee their country.”

Auntie Beeb concludes with this…

But although these islands might not be submerged under the waves in the short-term, it does not mean they will be inhabitable in the long-term, and the scientists believe further rises in sea levels pose a significant danger to the livelihoods of people living in Tuvalu, Kiribati and the Federated States of Micronesia.

One scientist in Kiribati said that people should not be lulled into thinking that inundation and coastal erosion were not a major threat.

Nothing can get in the way of those pension pots.  Even if the Beeb have to resort to unnamed scientists, they will continue to promote the goose that lays the golden eggs.





Technology | ‘Ghost in the Shell’ today

31 05 2010

Those who haven’t seen the Manga cartoon comic and movie ‘Ghost in the Shell‘, before reading any further, check out the link provided.  Thank you and now I shall begin.

A British scientist has claimed to be the first to have been infected with a computer virus.  Now, before you think this man has been having relations with one of those Japanese robotic maids, think again, for this tech-geek’s infection is a lot more scientifically mundane than that.

Dr Mark Gasson programmed the microchip, similar to those used to “tag” pets, to remotely open his lab’s security doors and unlock his mobile phone before having it inserted under his skin.

But he also infected the implant with a virus, to prove it could be transferred as the chip and the security system wirelessly exchanged electronic data.

The virus could then have been passed on to other devices interacting with the control system, such as colleagues’ swipe cards, in the same way viruses are able to spread across computer networks.

The results raise the possibility that in the future, increasingly advanced medical devices such as pacemakers and inner ear implants could become vulnerable to cyber attacks from other human implants.

The world we live in gets more complicated everyday.

Glad the geeks are thinking ahead though, fail to prepare and all that.





Diversity | Jonathan Katz essay

21 05 2010

Plucked from one of the commentators over at the crazy Clown’s place regarding the celebration of diversity.  The following article was written over a decade ago and from the perspective of a university professor, shines a light upon the mindset of the head-strong multiculturalist.

Diversity is the Last Refuge of a Scoundrel

Jonathan Katz, Thu May 13 12:39:11 CDT 1999

The air is full of talk of  ‘diversity’ meaning the ethnic and racial composition of populations, workforces and (especially) student bodies at universities. This is shorthand for concern about how many members of various “racial” groups are present. Most biologists doubt that race is meaningful in describing people, unlike dogs or cattle, but in everyday life the term ‘race’ is used as a proxy for physical appearance.

It is remarkable that the harder it is to evaluate accomplishment, and the less accomplishment matters to an institution, the more concern there is with diversity. In the absolute meritocracy of a used car lot, all that matters is whether a salesman can ‘move the iron’, and no one talks about diversity. In large corporate bureaucracies, government and academia, in which accomplishment is hard to measure and has only distant effects on the success and survival of the organization, diversity is always on the agenda.

The concern for ‘diversity’ can be an obsession. For example, at some universities the administrators appear hardly ever to think of anything else. Every public statement must drag in diversity, no matter how irrelevant. No platform or program is complete without a nod to diversity. The majority of public lectures concern diversity-related issues, with all the other areas of human knowledge and concern, from Shakespeare to molecular biology, confined to a minority (at my institution this was true for some years, but is now [2004] less so). Even the old-fashioned Southern racist occasionally stopped to think about the price of cotton.

Why am I so concerned about universities? Partly because I am a professor, so I see a university close-up every day. Most university faculties have less diversity of thought than the trio of Cotton Mather, Roger Williams and William Penn. But they don’t count, because they belonged to the wrong ‘race’. And partly because we subject our impressionable young people to them, as their first environment as adults.

University admissions are important because they are crucial to social mobility. That is where a young person with ability and character, but no special advantages or connections, ought to be able to leave his (or her) background behind and join an aristocracy of talent. The more university admissions are clogged with irrelevancies such as diversity, the less opportunity there is for the talented outsider, and the more the ideal of fair play is corroded. At some institutions only 10% of the places are open to applicants who are not members of some preferred group. Former presidents of Harvard and Princeton recently published a book (The Shape of the River) advertising the great advantages in life conferred by degrees from those institutions. Prejudice should not affect the award of this privilege.

In the diversity business what matters about people is their ‘race’, which is taken to determine character, intellect and moral value. That is the philosophy of National Socialism, with a different Master Race and (so far) no subhumans.

Most university administrators would object to the suggestion that they obtained their philosophy from Mein Kampf. So, let us consider a different hypothesis. University administrators are generally failed or bored academics who have chosen the camaraderie of the committee room over the rigors of the library or laboratory. Their proper task is to improve the quality of research and teaching at their institutions. But this is hard to do, and even harder to evaluate. Worse, the competition is trying equally hard; some institutions will rise in the pecking order, but others must fall, and their administrators are then failures.

Diversity offers a way out. It is easy to proclaim as a goal, and easy to achieve—simply meddle in the procurement, hiring and student admissions processes until whatever goal has been chosen is reached. Then congratulate yourself on your success, and announce that you will do even better next year. Even the most incompetent administrator can be a winner!

When someone talks about ‘diversity’ he is changing the subject from his proper responsibility—doing his job better. At a university that is improving the quality of teaching and research. At a government agency it is serving the public. In a foundation it is carrying out the donor’s wishes. And in a profit-making corporation it is making money for the shareholders. The next time you hear or read ‘diversity’, substitute ‘Americanism’, another right-sounding (but now unfashionable) slogan. Both of these are excuses for not doing one’s proper job.

Diversity has another attraction. It offers the pygmy Napoleons of adminstration a chance to interfere in every decision made—procurement, hiring and (at universities) student admissions. It keeps them busy and justifies their existence. It is a protection racket—give them a percentage or they will prevent you from hiring or admitting the people you need, or awarding contracts to the lowest or best bidders. It provides administrators plenty of opportunities to do favors for their friends, a natural human desire which, in other circumstances, remains under an ethical cloud. It often amounts to breach of fiduciary responsibility, violation of a public trust, or theft. It is the fashionable form of patronage.

The quest for diversity leads to another poisonous idea, that all decisions should be controlled by a central authority. No power is delegated, no subordinate individual or independent institution is given responsibility, or can act on its own authority, because it cannot be trusted to arrive at sufficiently “diverse” results. This is a fundamentally totalitarian idea, that power should be centralized rather than dispersed, and diversity is the rich manure in which this poisonous seed is growing.

In 1964 Congress passed, and the President signed, a Civil Rights Act which forbade racial discrimination in most areas of American life. Recently, on dubious grounds, the Supreme Court partially suspended this act for 25 years. The list of submitters of amicus curiae briefs in favor of suspension was remarkable. It included leaders of business, labor (odd bedfellows!), government and academia. Why?

The Act attempted to establish an individual right not to be subject to racial discrimination. This would increase the rights of individuals in opposition to the power of institutions. Is it surprising that the leaders of those institutions would argue in favor of increasing their power and against the rights of individuals? This is why the people of California passed by initiative Proposition 209, outlawing racial discrimination by their state and local governments, over the opposition of leaders of both political parties and most large institutions.

The diversity movement is racist at its core. When dealing with people we should be concerned with intellect, talent, character and accomplishment. People aren’t dogs or cattle; race matters only to racists.

Someone who talks about diversity is probably a scoundrel.

Postscript: The February 13, 2004 issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education contained an article by one of the prominent advocates of ‘diversity’ (a man named Stanley Fish, an administrator and formerly an English professor–surprising, in view of his self-proclaimed limited vocabulary–see the article for details). He asserted that there is no place for intellectual diversity at a university. This Fascist idea, that only one kind of thought is acceptable, is unfortunately very influential in many universities today. Thus, as Orwell predicted, fascism comes calling itself anti-fascism. In contrast, I assert that intellectual diversity is the only kind of diversity that has any relevance to a university’s mission.

Oh, by the way, the only diversity I celebrate it that of my own.  Anything that is alien to me, is by very definition, alien.  C’est la vie.

Incidently, Prof. Katz is part of a team put together for the Gulf oil spill clean-up operation and described as “the wild card of the group, having published provocative essays entitled “Don’t Become a Scientist,” “In Defense of Homophobia” and “Why Terrorism is Important” on his personal website“.

Blimey, sounds like a renegade when painted like that.  Reason why I love scientists, they’re usually the first to question the unquestionable.  Still wouldn’t hang about with them though, most who have obtained a PhD usually come attached with added smugness.






Junk Science | Mobile Madness

21 05 2010

We live in a technological wonder of a world where communication is instant.  Through the fibre optic cables that lie beneath our oceans to the satellites surrounding our little green and blue orb, information can be collected and transmitted in a matter of nano-seconds.

Like the Industrial Age had her health and social life suffer set-backs, the fallout from the Digital Age is largely ignored due to the economic power such advancements have had on the groups involved.  These certain groups have pumped hundreds of millions into dummy science factories in an effort to have hundreds of millions return to them.

Talking on the mobile just 30mins a day linked with heightened risk of brain cancer

By Fiona Macrae, Daily Mail.  Last updated at 7:17 AM on 18th May 2010

Using a mobile phone for just half an hour a day could raise the risk of brain cancer by up to 40 per cent, a controversial study has suggested.

Those who used the devices the most over ten years were more likely to be diagnosed with brain tumours, according to the World Health Organisation research.

But the results are sure to confuse people as they also suggested mobile phones made people less susceptible to tumours.

The researchers quizzed 5,000 people with brain tumours, and a similar number of healthy adults, about how often they used mobile phones in the past decade.

And the £16.5million Interphone study failed to find a link, the International Journal of Epidemiology reported.
It said ‘heavy’ users – those who used phones for a least half an hour a day – were 40 per cent more likely to develop glioma, an aggressive brain cancer.

They had 15 per cent higher chance of meningioma, another common cancer of the organ, it added.

But the British scientists involved in the study said these figures were flawed and urged people not to worry.

Some of those who took part claimed they used their mobile for more than 12 hours a day ten years ago – something which was ‘incredibly implausible’ but is likely to have skewed the results.

In addition, growths on the brain can affect memory.

Professor Anthony Swerdlow, of the Institute of Cancer Research in London, said: ‘The balance of evidence from this study, and in the previously existing scientific literature, does not suggest a causal link between mobile phone use and risk of brain tumours.

‘This study does not give reason for precautionary measures.’

However, others were less quick to dismiss the findings.

Professor Elisabeth Cardis, the study’s lead author, said: ‘We can’t just conclude that there is no effect.

‘There are indications of a possible increase. We’re not sure that it is correct. It could be due to bias, but the indications are sufficiently strong … to be concerned.’

Dr Christopher Wild, director of the WHO’s cancer research arm, called for more research into mobile phone use and brain cancer.

‘The results don’t allow us to conclude that there is any risk with mobile phone use, but… it is also premature to say there is no risk associated with it,’ he added.

Professor Denis Henshaw, a Bristol University radiation experts, said: ‘Children are known to be more vulnerable and we need to take action to protect them.

‘The challenge now is how we respond. Burying our heads in the sand is asking for trouble.’

WiredChild charity called for health warnings to be placed on mobile phone packaging.

But John Cooke, executive director of the Mobile Operators Association, which represents the industry, said: ‘The conclusion of no increased risk is consistent with the significant existing body of research reporting no health risk from using mobile phones.’

So another inconclusive contradictory report tainted by vested interests.  Couldn’t be the reason that where there is problems, there is funding, could it?





Google | Sorry, we’ve been evil

16 05 2010

The largest and most powerful corporation on Earth with the world-famous motto “Don’t Be Evil” has been forced to apologise for ‘hijacking’ WiFi waves then proceeding to hoover up all data within the catchment area indiscriminately.  All with the aid of the very mobile fleet of Google-endorsed Street View Cars.  Those motors with the special cameras taking photos of your valuables.

Google apologises for collecting personal web data

Google has been forced to apologise after admitting it has been wrongly spying on people’s internet use for more than three years.

By Roya Nikkhah, Telegraph.  Published: 9:45AM BST 15 May 2010

The internet giant’s Street View cars, which were launched last year to take photographs for its Google Maps service, have mistakenly collected information sent over unencrypted Wi-Fi networks.

Information gathered by the cars’ antennae could include parts of an email, text or photograph or even the website someone may be viewing.

About 600 gigabytes of data was taken off Wi-Fi networks in more than 30 countries. Google said it plans to delete all the information as soon as it gains clearance from government authorities.

The admission will raise more privacy worries about the company, which issued a public apology on Friday.

Google said that it only recently discovered the problem in response to an inquiry from German regulators, who began to examine why Google was using the cars to collect Wi-Fi data at all.

A month ago, Google said that it was only collecting the name and location of local Wi-Fi networks, information, it argued, that was publicly available and which would help improve its location services.

The company said that as soon as it became aware of the problem, it grounded its Street View cars from collecting Wi-Fi information and segregated the data on its network.

Google is now asking for a third party to review the software that caused the problem and examine precisely what data has been gathered.

In a blog post, Alan Eustace, Google’s senior vice president of engineering and research, wrote: “Maintaining people’s trust is crucial to everything we do, and in this case we fell short.

“The engineering team at Google works hard to earn your trust – and we are acutely aware that we failed badly here.”

Google said the problem dated back to 2006 when “an engineer working on an experimental Wi-Fi project wrote a piece of code that sampled all categories of publicly broadcast Wi-Fi data”.

That code was included in the software the Street View cars. “Quite simply, it was a mistake”, said Mr Eustace.

He added: “This incident highlights just how publicly accessible, open, non-password protected Wi-Fi networks are today.”

Dan Kaminsky, the director of penetration testing for security firm Ioactive, said that there was no intent by Google.

He said: “This information was leaking out and they picked it up. If you are going to broadcast your email on an open Wi-Fi, don’t be surprised if someone picks it up.”

John Simpson, from Consumer Watchdog, an American consumer group, said: “The problem is [Google] have a bunch of engineers who push the envelope and gather as much information as they can and don’t think about the ramifications of that.”

The launch of Street View cars last year prompted widespread protest, with critics claiming that the information provided on Google Maps would invade the privacy of home owners and help burglars.

The Information Commissioner’s Office cleared Street View of any breach of the Data Protection Act earlier this year.

With Corporations like Google, who needs Dr Evil.