Friday, September 17, 2021
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Savage vs. CAIR: The battle over free speech

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And the science SAYSSS…

National Post —Move over Donald Trump. In their NP Platformed email available to subscribers, columnist Sabrina Maddeaux calmly explains that Justin Trudeau's recent uncontrolled angry outbursts — one at a citizen who was rude, and one at a reporter who dared challenge him with actual reporter-like questions — provides a clue as to his baser instincts. And if you saw these outbursts, you'd agree, it isn't a good look for him or any normal human. But moreover, it's a terrible look for anyone claiming the title of Prime Minister. But it's this new line of anti-science, pure crass political campaign bullshit that has me riled:
"...At a weekend rally in Oakville, Ont., Trudeau revealed his hand when he claimed that, “If you want this pandemic to end, go out and vote Liberal.” He repeated the message again, even turning it up a notch, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, saying, “If you want this pandemic to end for good, go out and vote Liberal!”
"This is the ultimate false promise by a politician who’s become infamous for making false promises. No one can guarantee he will be able to end the pandemic. In fact, the expert consensus seems to be that there will be no real end to it: the virus will become endemic and we will be forced to live with it, albeit hopefully more normally. ..."
So it's "follow the science," and "the science says... to vote Liberal”? Many, especially the media, would dismiss "bible belt" politicians who insinuated that "God wants you to vote [whatever way].  This blowhard — and his disciples — should be treated no differently.

Two NDP humans resign their candidacy for alleged racist tropes

The National Post headline reads, "Two federal NDP candidates...

Inflation races higher in Canada — another new emergent threat to any economic recovery

Globe and Mail — They're reporting that Canada’s inflation rate jumps to 4.1%, fastest pace since 2003, sending shockwaves to almost nobody in the news media ahead of the stupid election. For example, the state-owned CBC "news media" division of the Trudeau Liberals reports it as their news item number seven or eight from the top. The G&M, as if explaining it to the CBC, wrote:
"The Statscan report arrives just five days before a federal election that’s seen affordability emerge as a key theme on the campaign trail, with all major parties pitching ideas to rein in a variety of costs, including for housing, child care and wireless plans..."
The cost of "wireless plans" is something like priority number 18,539 for me and 99% of the country, but Jagmeet Singh and the NDP — and therefore their loyal media at every opportunity — make out like it's more important than... I don't know.... inflation at 4% and Canada falling out of the economic freedom top ten... to say nothing of trillion-dollar debts and out-of-control budgets, and that thing about the end of our freedom of speech 'n junk like that. But ma wireless plan!!%#

Not “election news,” apparently: Canada drops out of top 10 countries in annual economic freedom report

Fraser Institute — In a sane land with actual journalism, this would be front-page news, one week ahead of an election. "In this year’s report, Canada ranks 14th based on 2019 data, the most recent comprehensive data, part of a downward trend since 2016. (Last year, Canada initially ranked 8th, although data revisions later lowered its rank to 13th.)"
“Due to higher taxes and increased regulation in Ottawa and the provinces, Canadians are less economically free, which means slower economic growth and less investment in Canada,” said Fred McMahon, Dr. Michael A. Walker Research Chair in Economic Freedom at the Fraser Institute.
Economic Freedom of the World: 2021 Annual Report is the world's premier measurement of economic freedom, ranking countries based on five areas—size of government [Canada: 111th], legal structure and property rights, access to sound money, freedom to trade internationally, regulation of credit, labour and business. In this year's report, which compares 165 countries and territories, Hong Kong is again number one—although China's heavy hand will likely lower Hong Kong's ranking in future years—and Canada (14th) trails the United States (6th).

Why isn’t this the biggest story in Canada?

National Review — "Why Isn’t the Attack on Larry Elder the Biggest Story in America?"  Their sub-head put it exactly right:
"A white woman in a gorilla mask threw an egg at a black man seeking to become the first non-white governor of our largest state, and the media shrug."
And they begin their story much as I have over the years: "Do a search for “Larry Elder” and gorilla on the CNN website and nothing comes up. Washington Post? Zilch. Nothing comes up on the New York Times site either..." — only replace those outfits with CBC, CTV, Global, Globe & Mail, etc.
In case you're stupid, let me fill you in: Larry Elder is a black man, but moreover, and in fact almost entirely over, he is a conservative man of considerable intellect and conscience. A Republican.
Indeed, in Canada, wherein they talk endlessly about evvvvvvery instance of "racism" in America in their activist effort to have it spill over into Canada and create divisions here to help fulfill their political ends, they utterly ignored this overt racism doozy. Why? Because they're hypocritical, dishonest, ideological, political... anything but journalists. They should all be ashamed of themselves. But I bet they aren't.
And yet they are so self-assured and arrogant that despite their obvious corruption, which they don't even care if you notice, they continue to demand and accept YOUR taxpayer handouts.

WE: The liberals’, the Liberals’, and Trudeau’s shame —documented in 4-part podcast

The Podcastosphere — I've listened to four parts of the well-done series titled "The White Saviors," narrated by Olusola Adeogun. There will be one more episode. The series documents the "cult" — yes, cult is the word used by an interviewee who worked for them — that is the liberals' own WE organization. I always thought of this WE group as cult-y, and corrupt, and as phony as a Liberal or NDP campaign promise, and as a leftist brainwashing center of bullshittery, but now, more so. Including, or especially because of, Justin Trudeau's participation in it. And the news media's love of it. And Big Public Education's embrace of it. And all of that combined.
The podcast is well described as "the exclusive story of a charity that did well when it was supposed to be doing good."
Produced by Canadaland, which has been on it for years, and arguably broke the story of WE and Liberal Party corruption in 2020.

Click and learn: https://play.acast.com/s/the-white-saviors

Biden’s poll numbers are too embarrassing for the “news” media

RealClearPolitics.com — I bring you the numbers because the others won't. The "news" media only bring you the news they want you to know, filtered through their very special way of telling it to you — because as you know, they're not really a "news media" at all. Therefore, Biden being increasingly underwater, as demonstrated by the scientific data that the news media studiously refuses to follow at RealClearPolitics.com, is ignored. They are lying through omission.
Click to see chart
Read a well-reasoned explanation of Biden's declining poll numbers by Rich Lowry, at Politico, but not at any of the "news media" outlets that couldn't stop reporting on Trump's declining poll numbers.

We won’t “get thru this together,” any more, boyfriend.

Globe and Mail — The Liberals' Globe and Mail division sounded off today on none other than their hero, liberalism's fancy-socked neo-liberal, The Right Woke Justin Trudeau. Seems the marriage is off.
"...We will never find comfort in the Liberal Leader’s corrupted line that we will “get through this together.” He doesn’t mean it. Only certain people matter to Mr. Trudeau – the ones he uses to prosecute identity politics for the singular purpose of furthering his destiny. ..."
The G&M, in a historic fashion reminiscent of the Maclean's revelation of two years ago, suddenly wakes up to discover that the Emperor wears no clothes; or at least those he does wear are just butt-ugly, overly showy, and of poor — possibly Fabrique en Chine —quality. He is, in fact, Right Woke, as I've been saying. And thus, the G&M finally seems to have woken up. Good morning.

Vacation in Progress – a Quicktake

I regret to inform you that even I have...

Vacation in progress

I regret to inform you that even I have to take time off. Plus, my office is getting re-carpeted, and thus my office furniture and computer (whatever that is) is currently jammed into another room, much of it standing on its end, and inaccessible. I could do all my work on a laptop, like I'm doing now, but I'm not an animal. Summer's nearly over, and thus, so will be my vacationing.

The Article

Originally posted to the San Francisco Chronicle Dec. 19, 2007

Editor’s note: This column makes reference to “CAIR”, the Islamic organization in the U.S., but Canada also has a branch of the very same organization.

Conservative talk radio show host Michael Savage is no stranger to courting controversy. Savage is known for his blunt commentary which at times goes beyond the realm of the politically incorrect into the confrontational. It is a style Savage describes as “psychological nudity” and the opening to his show warns overly-sensitive listeners as much. But, in the process, Savage touches on some fundamental truths that hit home with his fans, while simultaneously motivating his opponents. Whether they love him or hate him, 8 million listeners tune into “The Savage Nation” each week. The fact that the show originates in left-leaning San Francisco only adds to its entertainment appeal.

Savage’s controversial commentary tends to elicit a censorious response. It wasn’t long ago that Savage’s remarks on illegal immigrants drew the ire of San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors, which, it seems, is always on the lookout for avenues of politically-correct behavior control. Supervisor Gerardo Sandoval introduced a resolution twice this year condemning Savage for “hate speech,” a meaningless yet ominous gesture which disregards the concept of free speech. The resolution failed the first time around thanks to the lone dissent of the now-ousted Supervisor Ed Jew, who, in contrast to Sandoval’s identity-politics-steeped perspective, stuck with upholding the First Amendment. But in October, the resolution passed, providing a menacing example of government interference, albeit symbolically, in the free speech rights of its citizenry.

Economic punishment is another weapon in the hands of those opposed to Savage’s provocative methodology and the Council on American-Islamic Relations is the latest to jump on the boycott bandwagon. CAIR is a Washington, D.C., nonprofit organization that touts itself as “America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group.” As such, CAIR expressed concern over a number of statements made by Savage on his Oct. 29 program that the group felt were anti-Muslim in nature. In response, CAIR, along with the newly formed Hate Hurts America Community and Interfaith Coalition, has attempted to mount a boycott aimed at advertisers on Savage’s show. According to a Dec. 3 CAIR press release, a growing list of companies, including AutoZone, Citrix, TrustedID, JC Penney, OfficeMax, Wal-Mart, and AT&T, have joined the boycott.

But rather than taking CAIR’s boycott lying down, Savage is fighting back, in court. Represented by his lawyer, Daniel A. Horowitz, Savage is suing CAIR primarily for copyright infringement. According to the text of the lawsuit, which is posted at Savage’s Web site, CAIR “misappropriated” his work by posting the four-minute segment in question at its Web site and including it in outreach and fundraising efforts. Taking it a step further, the lawsuit accuses CAIR of misrepresenting itself as a “civil rights organization” and of “advocating a specific political agenda that is directly opposed to the existence of a free society.” While the copyright infringement charges against CAIR may or may not pan out, the broader implications could end up holding the most weight.

Savage is certainly not the first to call CAIR’s political motivations into question. CAIR is the leading Islamic lobby group in the nation and the organization is accorded a great deal of legitimacy by the mainstream media, the Bush administration and other politicians, academia, civil rights activists, and even military and federal agencies that have employed the group’s assistance for “sensitivity” and “cultural training.” Nonetheless, questions surrounding CAIR’s philosophical underpinnings, foreign funding, and political goals continue to haunt the group’s footsteps.

Federal prosecutors named CAIR, along with the Islamic Society of North America and the North America Islamic Trust, an unindicted co-conspirator in the recent case involving the now-defunct Muslim charity the Holy Land Foundation and its alleged financial ties to the Palestinian terrorist group turned terrorist government Hamas. Also coming to light via the Dallas trial was a 1991 memo put out by the Egyptian Islamist organization the Muslim Brotherhood citing a strategy to subvert the West using mainstream Islamic front groups such as CAIR. As Dallas Morning News columnist Rod Dreher put it:

The HLF trial is exposing for the first time how the international Muslim Brotherhood — whose Palestinian division is Hamas — operates as a self-conscious revolutionary vanguard in the United States. The court documents indicate that many leading Muslim-American organizations — including the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Islamic Society of North America and the Muslim American Society — are an integral part of the Brotherhood’s efforts to wage jihad against America by nonviolent means.

Indeed, in a 1993 interview with the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, CAIR’s communications director, Ibrahim Hooper, let slip that: “I wouldn’t want to create the impression that I wouldn’t like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future … But I’m not going to do anything violent to promote that. I’m going to do it through education.”

In light of the mistrial declared in the Holy Land Foundation case, which some concluded was due to a prosecution insufficiently prepared for the rigors of explaining terrorist financing and charges of intimidation among members of the jury, CAIR is trying to have the “unindicted co-conspirator” label retracted. It has solicited the assistance of House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., to that end. But even without the revelations brought to light by the Holy Land Foundation trial, a body of evidence exists to suggest that CAIR is not the benign organization it presents itself as.

Three CAIR officials have been convicted on federal terrorism charges since Sept. 11, 2001, and, according to World Net Daily, “at least 11 other CAIR officials have been caught up in terror investigations.” Others have documented CAIR’s objectionable associations, including its founding by former officials of the Islamic Association of Palestine, which has been described by the FBI counter-terrorism unit as a “a front organization for Hamas.” It’s to the point where, as WND puts it, “Congressional leaders say they are warning lawmakers and other Washington officials to disassociate from the group due to its growing terror ties.”

This may explain why California Sen. Barbara Boxer rescinded an award last year that was bestowed upon Basim Elkarra, the executive director of CAIR-Sacramento. As she put it at the time, “To praise (CAIR) because they haven’t been indicted is like somebody saying, ‘I’m not a crook.’” Similarly, New York Sen. Charles Schumer, in a statement from the Sept. 2003 Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology and Homeland Security noted that “we know (CAIR) has ties to terrorism … intimate links with Hamas” and Illinois Sen. Richard Durbin called CAIR “unusual in its extreme rhetoric and its associations with groups that are suspect.” Rep. Bill Shuster R-Penn., concluded that “Time and again (CAIR) has shown itself to be nothing more than an apologist for groups bent on the destruction of Israel and Islamic domination over the West.” With the exception of the latter, all of these politicians are Democrats, demonstrating that criticism of CAIR is no right-wing conspiracy. Nor is it, as has been claimed by CAIR officials on many occasions, a campaign by the so-called Israel Lobby.

The list of abhorrent statements made by CAIR officials, not to mention unethical tactics, ties to terrorism and Saudi funding, is so long that criticism can no longer be avoided by deflecting blame. Savage’s lawsuit details a number of instances in which CAIR officials publicly supported terrorism, acted as apologists for or distorted facts around terrorist acts, and admitted to an Islamist agenda to dominate America.

If experience is any indication, Savage’s lawsuit may very well end up being settled out of court, as its unlikely CAIR will wish to call attention to these unsavory details.

Such was the case when CAIR tried to sue Andrew Whitehead, the founder of the organization Anti-CAIR, in 2005 for libel. The lawsuit was based on objections to statements posted at the Anti-CAIR Web site, including Whitehead’s labeling CAIR a “terrorist supporting front organization.” But after Whitehead’s lawyer responded with a series of discovery requests and documents that, had they become part of a trial, almost certainly would have exposed CAIR’s shady background, the organization agreed to settle out of court. To this day, Whitehead has made no changes to the Anti-CAIR Web site, which may indicate that none of the libel charges made by CAIR could be substantiated.

At the time the case was settled, some predicted that CAIR’s litigiousness would taper off, but the group seems simply to have shifted tactics. Now, mounting boycotts or pressuring employers to drop political commentators whom they label “anti-Muslim” are CAIR’s preferred routes.

And Savage is not the first target. In 2005, talk show host Michael Graham found himself the object of one of CAIR’s pressure campaigns and ended up losing his job as a result, an outcome that was praised by CAIR officials. Conservative columnist and author Cal Thomas too was targeted by CAIR earlier this year for comments he made on Washington, D.C., radio station WTOP, but his employers, hit with a barrage of supportive e-mails from the public, stood by him.

Even prime-time fiction is not immune to CAIR’s meddling. The television show “24” earned CAIR’s disapproval after the introduction of an Islamic terrorist sleeper cell to the story line of the fourth season. CAIR immediately scheduled a meeting with Fox executives in Los Angeles, which resulted in “24” star Kiefer Sutherland delivering a midseason disclaimer reassuring viewers that not all Muslims were terrorists. As I noted in a column on the subject, the show itself makes this point obvious and the fact that it counts Muslims among its fans would seem to indicate as much. But where CAIR rears its head, others tend to cave lest they be labeled with the broad brush of “Islamophobia.”

A favored CAIR tactic is to push the specter of anti-Muslim hate crimes, as if to imply that the United States is a hostile environment for Muslims. The overriding narrative holds that the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks were the catalyst for a wave of unfounded hostility towards Islam. Never mind the fact that it is not anti-Muslim hate crimes that have been on the rise since Sept. 11 but rather anti-Jewish hate crimes, the United States is still the most religiously and ethnically tolerant nation in the world. This may perhaps explain why, as compared to other parts of the West, Muslims are thriving in America. But one would never know this to listen to CAIR’s dire reports.

Among the supposed anti-Muslim hate crimes sweeping the nation are death threats, a claim that has a habit of popping up whenever criticism is directed toward high-profile Muslim groups or individuals. It seems awfully coincidental that, following the announcement of Savage’s lawsuit, the FBI began investigating a death threat claim brought by Basim Elkarra, director of CAIR’s Sacramento chapter, which he insists resulted from the public feud. Strangely enough, Elkarra also reported a death threat after Sen. Boxer, as mentioned above, rescinded his award. While the basis for Elkarra’s current claim remains to be seen, such threats are in fact a hazard of public life and aren’t necessarily the doing of one’s political opponents. The truth of the matter is that those who dare to critique Islam — Muslims and ex-Muslims among them — are themselves most at risk of death threats in the current political and religious climate.

Time will tell whether or not the rest of Savage’s advertisers fall prey to CAIR’s intimidation tactics, but something tells me his aggressive lawsuit will have an impact. Whatever happens, it’s high time that CAIR’s mantle of respectability be put to the test. The war on terrorism has many fronts, the bulk of them ideological in nature. Giving up our rights to free speech in order to avoid causing offense would be a clear victory for America’s enemies. The question is, is CAIR among them?

Editor’s note: This column makes reference to “CAIR”, the Islamic organization in the U.S., but Canada also has a branch of the very same organization.

Joel Johannesen
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