So there!

Just to get this straight, I remind you once again that last week the Pope quoted some 6-700 year old documents that basically said that some of Muhhamads teachings were “evil and inhuman” because they “spread their faith by the sword.”

The Pope had to apologize for those remarks this week but just to prove how wrong he was some Muslims in Palestine went out and burned churches while in Somalia they killed a nun at a childrens hospital!
So there, take that Infidel!

Now here is where it gets even stranger. Muslim spokesman in different parts of the world have condemed acts by what they call “extremist elements” of Islam…….. while at the same time calling on mainstream Muslims to practice restraint and not engage in any acts of violence in reprisal for the comments made by the Pope.

I may be a bit naive here but If Islam is such a religion of peace why do they have to issue an appeal for restraint in the first place.

Even though I am not a great fan of the Catholic Church, (or any other mainstream religion) I can’t recall a single instance in the last five hundred years where the Vatican has had to call for calm and non-violence amongst the faithfull in regards to a perceived insult to Catholicism.

Remember boys and girls: Sticks and Stones my break my bones – but names will never hurt me…… So play nice!

There is a group called “Al-Qaida in Iraq” that yesterday warned that war against Christianity and the West will go on until Islam “takes over the world.”

No apology by the Pope will be sufficient they said, while demonstrators in South Asia and Indonesia carried black flags and burned effigies of the Pope as well.

“Al-Qaida in Iraq” went on to say: “You and the West are doomed, as you can see from your defeat in Iraq, Afghanistan, Chechnya and elsewhere!”

In Iran, meanwhile, supreme leader (doesn’t his remind you of “fearless leader” on the Rocky and Bullwinkle show?”) Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called for protests against the U.S.

Ali argued that while the Pope may have been decieved into making his remarks, the words give the West an “excuse for suppressing Muslims” by depicting them as terrorists!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Right!

Your scribe
Allan W Janssen

A few more quick observations before the day gets underway.

*I normaly hate those “cutsy” messages on church and store signs (Like one one a high school billboard that said “seven days of this makes one weak!”) and bumper stickers.

But, yesterday I actually saw a couple that I really liked .

The first was a sign in front of a travel agency. It said “GO AWAY!”

Then a bumper sticker that really struck home since I’m not nearly in as much of a hurry as I used to be. It said:

“I may be slow, but I’m ahead of YOU!”

*Next – some legislators in the States are starting to talk about putting up a fence between the U.S. and Canada as well as the one down by Mexico. Personally I think it’s a great idea.

Maybe it will keep those assholes OUT!

(I remeber back in the 80’s I was going from Sarnia to Port Huron for a bit of shopping and when I stopped at Customs the guy asked me for a passport. I told him I only had a drivers license and why did he suddenly want a passport or visa to get in. He replied: “We have to be carefull you know, there are a lot of people that want to get into this Country by any means possible! I looked him straight in the eye and said: “Why?” A minute later I was back on the Canadian side with a “refused entry” slip in my hand! I thought to myself, “fuck em,” and went to our own mall. It’s also one of the last times I felt an urge to go to the States.)

*Thailand has an unusual political system. It’s a democaracy with a twist. They just had their 18th coup d’e-tat in a row.

It seems that when the government gets too rank they send in the army to throw them out and then have democratic elections to get a new government.

Until that elected government gets too smelly. Then they have another coup d’e-tat. Then they have a democratic election to………… well you get the idea!

*All sorts of fallout about that Maher Arar case I wrote about yesterday. People are starting to call for officials in the R.C.M.P. and C.S.I..S. to be fired.

These assholes shouldn’t be fired!
They should be going to JAIL!

Your faithfull scribe
Allan w Janssen

20 thoughts on “So there!

  1. The last 500 years…. I’m not that well versed in Catholic history.

    I do remember a little outfit full of catholics called the IRA; perhaps the Vatican could have restrained them a little more.

    Other wise agree completely with your comments regarding ‘moderate’ muslims.  I think it’s becoming clear there is no such thing.

  2. You do realize that the protestant reformation was within your 500 year time frame… Catholics weren’t exactly being very calm back then about insults against the church, the pope, etc. and the Vatican most certainly was not calling for ‘calm’.

  3. I don’t know if they’ve actually used the word “calm” but the Catholics do seem to be trying to minimize all this “fuss” about what a great big pack of child molesters they’ve been harboring over the last few decades. I’m pretty sure that I’ve seen it described as an attack on the Catholic faith, and not simply a case of priests buggering young boys even.

    And, while it’s not exactly Catholicism, Christian fringe groups have been an outstanding example that religions of all flavors can go batshit crazy at a moments’ notice. We’ve got threatening doctors and bombing clinics, dabbling in politics with threats of eternal hellfire, and making a great big mess out of Waco too. All in all, as a cynic, I’d say that the only real reason that Christians in a lot of places aren’t burning things down and blowing shit up is because we’ve got a vigorous police presence that frowns upon such things while in a lot of Muslim-dominant countries the rule of law is a little more fluid and open to interpretation.

    That’s to say, they’re already sodomizing children and blowing up medical facilities – if they thought they wouldn’t get caught what else would Christians do behind the shroud of God?

  4. MM: That’s to say, they’re already sodomizing children and blowing up medical facilities – if they thought they wouldn’t get caught what else would Christians do behind the shroud of God?

    I’d hate to think.

  5. All in all, as a cynic, I’d say that the only real reason that Christians in a lot of places aren’t burning things down and blowing shit up is because we’ve got a vigorous police presence that frowns upon such things…

    Nice try Mook, but you all don’t get it both ways.  You either have the cake or you eat the cake, but no having the cake and eating it too.

    We see countless posts here about how the U.S. is really a de facto theocracy with Christians acting as puppet masters pulling the strings of government to their advantage and kicking the ugly step-children atheists to the corner and feeding them grool with a long wooden spoon that alternates as a head whacker for the atheists exhibition of razor sharp logic.

    Yet, if we follow that line of thinking we come to the conclusion that the cops are but an arm of the state.  So, if we follow your yellow brick road we arrive at this:

    All in all, as a cynic, I’d say that the only real reason that Christians in a lot of places aren’t burning things down and blowing shit up is because we’ve got a vigorous agents of a Christian theocracy that frowns upon such things…

    Hmmm.  Interesting thought.

  6. Well maybee not 500 years and maybe not all Catholics and Protestants etc but you get the general idea.

    Now the point is this: We in the West are a fairly tolerant and apathetic lot and we are not quick to anger. But, people in the Middle East should realized that when push comes to shove it really could get very dangerous for them!

    (These have only been very minor shoves so far in the grand scheme of things. This includes 9/11, the war in Afghanistan and Iraq etc. etc. They are more of a political problem than anything else!)

    Now this is not a threat or anything else but a heads up! All the terrorist acts have been but minor irritants in the psyche of the West. BUT, if it gets to the point where a united Europe and North America start to take the provocations of Islam personally and go after Muslim blood…… it could prove to be catastrophic for the Middle East! In other words, reign in your radicals!!

    Allan

  7. Now, now, Consi.  Even though I’ve eaten “grool” and been whacked on the head by evil theocrats (although I understand you can cook up a storm when so inclined), I’ll go on record saying that, given the choice, I’ll take the Christian theocrats over the Muslim theocrats any day, and not just because I like pork.  Not only that, but I’m willing to bet that just about all the other ugly step-children here would say the same.

    However, there are other possible choices: we can say, for instance, that even though we disapprove of suicide bombers and using children as mine sweepers, we don’t think that justice and freedom are necessarily served, either here or in Islamistan, by pursuing a policy informed by simpleminded Biblical us-them thinking.

    Of course, we in the West have had a couple centuries of scientific, economic, and cultural progress to give us a worldview perhaps a bit more nuanced in some ways than that of our disadvantaged Muslim brethren.  Knowledge brings power, which brings responsibility.  So the real question is, not which kind of theocracy is better, but how can we act most responsibly?

  8. Of course, we in the West have had a couple centuries of scientific, economic, and cultural progress to give us a worldview…

    Actually if you look history of religions islam is now in similar age as christianity when it did all burning of books and people, torture, supressing sciences etc.
    It’s just 400 years from when people who didn’t worship same holy cow as christians were roughed if not killed.
    Before that there was nearly thousand year long period when christianity controlled most areas, from available literature to education and sciences, to position of sexes and such.
    In fact even voting right of women is still very new thing considering long history of western countries. (one of the pets in western worlds complaints about islam)

    So islam is just following relatively similar path to that of christian western world.
    And equally there seems to be part of christianity still wanting to return to that path and ready to force others.

  9. I meant to add somewhere that the Catholic church DOES have some moral authority to speak about ‘conversion by the sword’ – similar to that of a man in his third, and finally successful marriage might have on marital relationships.

    The fruits of forced conversion weren’t all that sweet, as the Catholic church knows too well.  I will grant Muslims (who seem intent on nursing 600-year-old wounds) are unlikely to listen to them on the subject.

  10. E.T: yep, you said it.  By the way- Happy 100 years of women’s suffrage in Finland!  You beat Austria by twelve years, and the United States by fourteen!  Hyvä Suomi!

    DoF: I suspect this “nursing of wounds” thing is easier to sustain in poor countries, where there aren’t so many films and TV programs to divert you.  It is hard for a Westerner to empathize with Bin Laden & Co. about the need to avenge the Crusades, not to mention the lasting insult dealt to Islam by the destruction of the caliphate in 1924…

  11. this “nursing of wounds” thing is easier to sustain in poor countries, where there aren’t so many films and TV programs to divert you.

    Without external media, you have a traditional culture where change is measured in tens of generations rather than years.  You only have a future if it is different from the present and the past – otherwise, you manage your village the same way your distant ancestors did, and tell the same stories.  Human culture ‘frozen in carbonite’.

  12. DoF: LOL ! Frozen in carbonite- tsk tsk, you’re showing your age!  Let me know when you’re in Vienna-  I’ve got the whole thing on DVD.  Not that you probably haven’t…  but I’ll bet you can’t get a decent Zweispänner in Normal…

  13. I submitted this once, and it disappeared. My apologies if it later shows up twice.

    moses: I may be a bit naive here but If Islam is such a religion of peace why do they have to issue an appeal for restraint in the first place.

    Think of the riots we have had in our own cities, and the pleas of Mayors and Governors for restraint. Most of their citizens were not engaged in violent protest, and I don’t think you would apply the same logic to those scenarios. Right now, Muslim leaders are damned if they do and damned if they don’t. When they don’t step up, they are accused of condoning it. When they do step up, they go unheard (under-reported) or their stand is taken as a sign that all of their people are violent. Wha?

    KKop: …regarding ‘moderate’ muslims. I think it’s becoming clear there is no such thing.

    That’s only because it is very convenient to label them boogie men when we are killing them. Kill a Muslim child = take out a future terrorist, right? It is absolute bullshit, and it irks me to no end: OPEN YOUR EYES. WE HAVE SEEN THIS BEFORE. Savages might sneak in your house at night and scalp your children. Beware of the black men who all fantasize about raping white women. Jews? Communists? Gooks? Any of that ring a bell? The only Muslims you are hearing about are the violent fanatics because that suits the cause and feeds the momentum. (Intelligence: where do you think we are getting it? Google “Muslim peace protest” or some variation thereof. The stories exist, buried.)

    Consigliere: You either have the cake or you eat the cake, but no having the cake and eating it too.

    Actually, if you hand me a cake and I eat it, I have done both (had it and ate it). There is no eating the cake and then having it, too.  cheese

  14. Even though I am not a great fan of the Catholic Church, (or any other mainstream religion) I can’t recall a single instance in the last five hundred years where the Vatican has had to call for calm and non-violence amongst the faithfull in regards to a perceived insult to Catholicism.

    Actually, the vatican called on Catholics in Northern ireland to stop violence on several occasions throughout the 20th century.

    As for the time before the 20th century, the reason the catholic church never called on extremists to be calm is because they were more or less complicit in the actions.  Inquisition, anyone?  The inquisition put people to death for the mere slight of not being catholic.

    This doesn’t mean I think muslims extremists are in the right by any means, but putting blinders on when looking at history does nobody any good.

    Oh, and not to be a grammar nazi, but it’s spelled “Coup d’état”.

  15. MoP, the IRA didn’t wage war on account of perceived slights against Catholicism.  Their complaint was essentially territorial.

    It has been several hundred years since the Catholic church practiced holy war or inquisition.

    Justice, it is worth noting that whenever the Chicago Bulls win a game, there are minor riots.  Last year we had several thousand dollars property damage on campus because of – I forget which sport – somebody threw or bounced a ball well or poorly.  Many years ago here in Normal, IL, we had a riot over beer that included > 2,000 students.  People like to riot if you give them half a reason.  Or even 10-6 reason.  shut eye

    I know some very nice Muslims, and presumably they are the majority in Islam.  But I can’t draw much conclusion from the tiny sample of my experience, which is something like one hundred millionth of the total.

    On the other hand – don’t know if you’ve been reading the other thread on SEB about this subject, “Muslims protest portrayal as violent by committing acts of violence”, but Zilch posted a link to a very hopeful article in the NY times about a Muslim progressive movement. (Scroll down quite a ways)

  16. Fair enough, DOF.  I defer to your superior knowledge in this matter.  I think you saw the point I was trying to make anyways.

    What could il Papa have possibly been trying to accomplish with that speech, though?

  17. What could il Papa have possibly been trying to accomplish with that speech, though?

    MoP – I must confess to incomprehension as to what goes on in the mind of a man who spends his whole life wearing robes, speaking in Latin, and avoiding sex.

  18. Islam is 600 years younger than Christianity.  What were the Christians doing 600 years ago?

    But I think it’s a cultural thing.  There is violence in the religion because there is violence in the culture.  Is there anyone who thinks the Northern Ireland thing is really the old Catholics vs Protestant thing?

    The Mid East extremists turn to terrorism not because Allah wills it.  Allah is just a convienient recruiting tool.

    I remember reading an article about some Iraqis claiming that some of our soldiers took out a bunch of civilians.  As far as I can tell, it turned out to be a case of civilians in the crossfire until I heard an account by one of the Iraqi’s on the scene (or at least he claimed to have witnessed it)  He said that someone had taken out one of the US tanks and it was burning.  Another tank fired on the destroyed wreck (something a soldier said was true because he said the vehicle was getting mobbed by ‘enemy combatants’ ) and that shrapnel from the round caused civilian casualties.  The dispute didn’t seem to be about the events that took place, but with whether or not the Americans could see that the mob were civilians or not.

      Now even stipulating that everything the Iraqi witness said was true, what the hell were civilians doing mobbing a destroyed US tank in a combat zone?  If this were anywhere else, the civilians would be getting as far away from that wreck as they could, and if it wasn’t true, why would he think that it was a plausable story?  Because that is normal behavior for civilians there?  Maybe.

      This, I think highlights the problems in the mid east.  There is an entirely different mind-set there.  They solve problems using solutions we would never think of.  If it were simply a ‘religious thing’ then Muslems outside the Mid East could have some influence over their affairs, much like Catholics here in the States can influence Catholics in France or even Russia.  There doesn’t seem to be a unified Islamic faith.  You have the Islam in the mid east, and you have Islam everywhere else.  The two don’t seem to have much to do with each other.

    Anyone who says the problems in the Mid East come from religious differences is being way too naive.  People got angry with what the Pope said because they could justify it.  The Pope stands as a symbol of the west only slightly less prominent than America.  Is it ideology? Sure, but it’s not religious.

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