I’m perplexed…why no joint statement on California from Devoy and FIANZ?

I am really confused.

Within hours of the tragedy in Paris we saw Susan Devoy in conjunction with her Islamic friends rush to press with a statement telling us all not to pick on Muslims because a Muslim jihadist group slaughtered “innocents” in Paris.

But we have complete and utter silence over the massacre of a bunch of handicapped Christians who were having a ‘holiday’ party, by a couple of nutter Islamists.

This was her statement about Paris:

The Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand issued a joint statement tonight with the NZ Human Rights Commission in the wake of recent terrorist attacks in France and Lebanon.

?We stand alongside all innocent victims of terrorism in peace, solidarity and humanity,? said Hazim Arafeh, president of the Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand. ? Read more »


Photo Of The Day

Photo: Stanford Prison Experiment.

Photo: Stanford Prison Experiment.

Stanford Prison Experiment

In one of the most notorious ethically questionable studies in history, Stanford psychology professor Philip Zimbardo had volunteers pretend to be prisoners or guards. The experiment was designed to last for two weeks, but it was halted after just six days, when the guards became increasingly hostile and the prisoners rebelled, acted out, or became passive and withdrawn.

The experiment showed how prisons quickly dehumanize people, and how good-natured people can be turned evil in a short period of time.

The aim of the study was to investigate the psychological effects of becoming a prisoner or prison guard. The researchers wanted to investigate how readily people would conform to the roles of guard and prisoner in a role-playing exercise that simulated prison life. Zimbardo (1973) was interested in finding out whether the brutality reported among guards in American prisons was due to the sadistic personalities of the guards or had more to do with the prison environment.

The experiment also answers the question, ?What happens when you put good people in an evil place? ? does humanity win over evil or is it the other way around? Are some people inherently evil or they?become?evil due to the?circumstances?

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New Zealand is dragging the chain on euthanasia

The lack of courage of NZ politicians is showing, especially David Cunliffe who spiked Maryan Street’s bill, Maryan Street for not standing up to him and Iain Lees-Galloway and Andrew Little for not wanting to push it through.

Add to that the cowardice of John Key who would rather push to change the flag rather than something that will help many.

California has become the fifth US state to allow terminally ill patients to seek a doctor’s help to end their lives after the governor signed a controversial bill.

Governor Jerry Brown, in a statement on Monday (local time), said he consulted members of the Catholic Church, which is opposed to the measure, as well as physicians before making the decision.

“In the end, I was left to reflect on what I would want in the face of my own death,” said the 77-year-old governor, who as a young man studied to enter the priesthood.

“I do not know what I would do if I were dying in prolonged and excruciating pain,” Brown said. ? Read more »

Monsanto has a wee problem


Oh dear, here?s a headline no company wants to see ?Monsanto Stunned – California Confirms ‘Roundup’ Will Be Labelled “Cancer Causing?.

?California just dealt Monsanto a blow as the state?s Environmental Protection Agency will now list glyphosate – the toxic main ingredient in the U.S.? best-selling weedkiller, Roundup – as known to cause cancer.?

This will have the lawyers and lobbyists all fired up. ? Read more »

The only thing worse than plague is squirrels with plague


Not a plague of squirrels either…squirrels with plague…it must be the end times.

A second Yosemite National Park campground will be shut down for five days after a pair of dead squirrels were found to be infected with the plague, US park and public health officials say.

The closure of Tuolumne Meadows Campground comes a week after a child who camped elsewhere in Yosemite, one of America’s top tourist destinations, was hospitalised with the disease.

The case marked the first time a human was known to be infected with the centuries-old scourge, which is carried by rodents and the fleas that live on them, in California since 2006.

The campground will be closed from Monday through Friday of next week based on “new evidence of plague activity in animals,” Karen Smith, director of the California Department of Public Health, said. ?? Read more »

Google cars drive like a granny, but that’s ok


People argue that self driving cars are risky, yet after millions of miles Google’s self drive cars have only had about a dozen accidents and none were the fault of the car.

Perhaps it is because they drive like grannies.

Google cars drive like your grandma – they’re never the first off the line at a stop light, they don’t accelerate quickly, they don’t speed, and they never take any chances with lane changes (cut people off, etc.).

Google cars seem to be a little overly-cautious at intersections where visibility is limited: Think a T-intersection where a big truck or a bush blocks visibility for the road that needs to turn either left or right. The Google car I saw inched forward very slowly with a lot of pauses, as if it was stopping to get its bearings even though it obviously hadn’t pulled forward enough to “see” anything. It appeared very safe, but if I had been behind it I probably would have been annoyed at how long it took to actually commit to pull out and turn.

Google cars are very polite to pedestrians. They leave plenty of space. A Google car would never do that rude thing where a driver inches impatiently into a crosswalk while people are crossing because he/she wants to make a right turn. However, this can also lead to some annoyance to drivers behind, as the Google car seems to wait for the pedestrian to be completely clear. On one occasion, I saw a pedestrian cross into a row of human-thickness trees and this seemed to throw the car for a loop for a few seconds. The person was a good 10 feet out of the crosswalk before the car made the turn.? Read more »

So who is in favour of CIR?

I object to the loons who push for Binding Citizen Initiate Referenda.

They think that they are acting democratically and are just but the reality is that they ignore our representative democracy and in many cases reject it utterly.

Mostly they are single issue nutters with a particular cause to push and see BCIR as a way to do that.

Colin Craig entertained these nutters and most coalesce around his cult party.

But CIR around the world is often used as a bully pulpit. California is one such case, where a CIR loon is trying to get a proposition across the line that would allow the state to mass kill homosexuals.

California has always done democracy a bit differently than most other states. Every other year, voters in the Golden State cast ballots not just for people to represent them, but for many of the actual laws that govern them. It’s not quite the ancient Athenian model of citizens gathering on a hill to make decisions, but it’s a version of direct democracy deeply-embedded in California’s political culture. Over the years, voters have answered for themselves weighty questions of taxation, same-sex marriage, election laws, and the legalization of marijuana, among many others. ?? Read more »

Photo Of The Day

Photo:  JAMES PALMER ? Associated Press

Photo: JAMES PALMER ? Associated Press

School Bus Kidnapping

‘The Memories Never Stop’

?In this July 20, 1976 photo, officials remove a truck buried at a rock quarry in Livermore, Calif., in which 26 Chowchilla school children and their bus driver, Ed Ray were held captive.?Ray, the school bus driver was hailed as a hero for helping the students escape, after three men kidnapped the group and buried them underground.

Read more »

BL86, coming to a sky near you


An asteroid the size five football fields is approaching Earth and is expected to pass by [today]. It will be visible through strong binoculars ? definitely worth doing; the next time such an asteroid could be this close again will be in 2027.

The weather has been particularly good for star gazing of late. ? Read more »

Brown’s rail project an expensive “boondoggle”

Not Len Brown this time, but Jerry Brown, the Governor of California and his ill-fated rail project.

The similarities are astonishing though.

As California breaks ground this week on its new high-speed rail line, it is clear what the $68 billion dollar project amounted to: though the project will surely make unions, construction workers, and bond salesmen happy, it is little more than money the state doesn?t have for a train that its residents don?t need and probably won?t use.?TheWashington Post?reports on the project?s continued financial troubles, and it?s not pretty:

Voters approved a $9.95 billion bond aimed at funding the initial construction of the rail project in 2008, by a slim five-point margin. The Obama administration added another $3.2 billion in federal grants, and the legislature agreed in 2014 to provide funding through cap-and-trade taxes on greenhouse gases, which will add another $250 million to $1 billion per year.

That means the rail authority will have about $26 billion at best, less than half the estimated total costs. California High-Speed Rail Authority officials have said they expect advertising, real estate developments and private investors to fund up to a third of the total costs. ? Read more »