Democracy

Still think you did the right thing Murray?

And Prime Minister Bill English can’t even say if Israel will answer the phone if we call.  Has no idea of our diplomatic status.  Which isn’t much of a surprise when both ambassadors have been punted.

Murray’s brain fart has put us on the wrong side of history, the wrong side of our allies, and the wrong side of decency. Read more »

In Trump’s America dead people, illegal aliens and Martyn Martin Bradbury won’t be able to vote

We highlighted last election how Martyn Bradbury appeared on the electoral roll twice, once as Martyn Bradbury and once as Martin Bradbury making it possible for him to vote twice. President Trump has decided to crack down on voter fraud which is timely since ex-President Obama in an interview before the election encouraged families that contained illegal aliens to vote. While he did make it clear that only the members of the family who were citizens could legally vote he also explained that they didn’t need to fear that voting would make it possible for immigration authorities to track a person down and come for the ” undocumented” members of the person’s family.

After playing a clip of the interview late last week, Cavuto brought on former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer for a follow-up discussion.

“I can’t believe that I heard what I heard!” said the FBN host. “It was very clear that the question that was being asked was about illegals voting and them being afraid they might be reported to Border Security.”

-dailywire.com

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Ignorance of and leniency towards Salafi ideology are two major problems in Western nations

I contacted Nicolas Pirsoul who is a doctoral candidate in politics and international relations at the University of Auckland recently because his research interests include issues around democracy and Middle Eastern politics. I told him about the story we had broken about Salafist Dr Sahib and asked him if he would consider writing an article for Whaleoil in reaction to the story since it had been picked up by the mainstream media both in New Zealand and in Britain. He politely declined because he said he was currently working on several articles and opinion pieces already.It appears that one of the pieces he was working on was for the New Zealand Herald.

Isis, Al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, and other terrorist organisations are all inspired by a particular understanding of Islam: Salafism.

Salafism is an extremist, literalist, and intolerant form of Sunni Islam…

Salafism obtained the important political power it continues to hold today when Muhammad ibn ʿAbd al-Wahhab formed an alliance with the al-Saud family during the 18th century to give birth to the Saudi version of Salafism, Wahhabism, the state religion of the current kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

As Saudi Arabia developed as a major political force, due in large part to its oil production and its status as one of the West’s principal allies in the Middle East, Salafism further expanded its political and geographical influence. Saudi Arabia has continued to use its wealth to propagate Wahhabi ideas thorough the Islamic world and Muslim communities in the West.

Given these facts isn’t it strange that all those Sunni Imams from Egypt were sent to New Zealand this year to combat extremism? You know, the extremism that we don’t currently have in New Zealand according to FIANZ. Who exactly were these Imams targeting? Were they concerned about Salafists like Dr Sahib from Saudi Arabia who are propagating Wahhabi ideas?

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Ad in Canada offering protection to threatened Muslim women is banned

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Freedom of expression exists in Canada but only for Muslims. This is not the first time that advertisers have refused to run ads that they consider anti-Islamic but have been happy to run ads offensive to non-Muslims. In this latest case, the ad’s purpose was to help Muslim women. Mentioning the reality of honour killing, however, is not allowed because the ad company thinks that the truth is offensive.

In a court hearing scheduled to begin in September, the City of Edmonton will have to justify its silencing of a non-profit group that wants to promote gender equality and protect Canadian women and girls from honour killings.

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Referenda deeply undemocratic

The strange definitions of democracy continue as what Boris Johnson referred to as “a kind of hysteria, a contagious mourning” emanate from the section of the British population that wanted to stay in the European Union. Boris has said that the recent protests from crowds of young people are driven by their fears and anxieties about what the future might hold rather than “the EU project per se .”

Unfortunately, this hysteria has led to some very strange conclusions about what democracy is. One of the most bizarre is a claim that referenda are deeply undemocratic.

…Johnson said these fears were “wildly overdone” and set out his “basic truths”.

“The reality is that the stock market has not plunged, as some said it would – far from it. The FTSE is higher than when the vote took place,” he added.

“There has been no emergency budget, and nor will there be.

“But the crowds of young people are experiencing the last psychological tremors of Project Fear – perhaps the most thoroughgoing government attempt to manipulate public opinion since the run-up to the Iraq War.” He said it was time for the nonsense claims that the older generation had stolen the future of youngsters, to end.

-Dailytelegraph

An article on Fushion.net titled Brexit, Hamilton, and the limits of democracy is a great example of some of these ” psychological tremors”.

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Playing the blame game

Here we go, I thought as I read the title of the article.

How have Boomers stuffed thee? Let me count the ways

Why is it that people of a certain political persuasion always think it is someone else’s fault? Why can’t they take personal responsibility? The author, just like the Remoaners  in Britain, blames older people for the younger people not getting what they want. There should be a special word for this kind of attitude. We have the word racist but what should we call people who judge others based on their age?  Ageist?

…The UK’s old – many retired, or careering towards it – decided on behalf of the young, that they didn’t want Johnny Foreigner coming in to take their jobs.

No they didn’t, it was a democratic vote. Why do writers continue to push this lie?

Firstly, let’s not forget the irony in that.

It should worry them the least, particularly when considering conversely the ones most affected by immigrant competition – the young – voted to remain.

Exiting the European Union was not just about immigration.

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Yet another politician who fails to understand the meaning of democracy

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I received the below email from Sue Moroney, a Labour MP who seems to be confused about what democracy actually is. Like the Remoaners from the Remain campaign in Britain, when things don’t go her way she blames it on a lack of democracy.

The government voted for by the people, the government with the majority, is the government that has the power to make decisions. That power was given to them by the people. It is a power that can be taken away easily. It is the whole point of democracy. We can elect people into power and we can remove them from power. MPs who are not part of the government do not have power because we didn’t give them any. If the National government chooses to not go ahead with something Sue Moroney wants, then that is democracy in action.

Unlike the Labour party the National party have the responsibility of managing New Zealand’s finances. They cannot open New Zealand’s purse and spend freely every time Sue Moroney demands it. I liken it to the manager of a business and an employee of a business. The employee wants a coffee machine for the staff cafeteria because it will make the staff happier and more productive, in his opinion. The manager would like to do this for her staff but she looks at the business budget and sees that she cannot provide the coffee machine without cutting important spending elsewhere. Management have the “financial veto power” for a reason. The buck stops with them, not with the employees. It is the same with Sue Moroney’s Paid Parental Leave Bill. It is a lovely, generous idea but her party isn’t the one that has to find the money to fund it.

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The astonishing stupidity of Rachel Smalley

We’ve looked at the retarded nature of Rachel Smalley before. She is perhaps the most annoyingly sanctimonious and solipsistic commentator around. Who can forget her ticking off NASA for naming a spacecraft after an eminent scientist, confusing his name (Kepler) with Kevlar and remonstrating that it isn’t a good look to name a spacecraft after bullet proof vests? Of course, she never lets staff in the NewstalkZB newsroom forget that she is the “only serious journalist” in that organisation.

I was looking forward to her column this morning as much as I looked forward to other lefty commentator reports, but who knew she could be so utterly disdainful of the democratic process.

Referendums have their place. Should a country change its flag, for example? That’s a good use of a referendum. But on the issue of E.U membership, an issue of such profound economic importance, why let ‘Jo public’ decide when some among ‘Jo public’ will be ill-informed, politically ignorant and have little understanding of the impact of their vote on trade, on policy, on Britain’s constitution, on the country’s legal framework, on national unity, on a million things.

That’s not democracy. That is political stupidity.

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A rare moment of clarity on the left

I caught the tail-end of a conversation on Twitter yesterday about the presidential primaries in the US, and the mathematical impossibility of Bernie Sanders winning the Democratic nomination.

The case was being made (by New Zealanders, though I’m sure the same conversation was happening bigger and louder in the States) that given Bernie “cannot” win at this point, he should withdraw and instruct his supporters to back Clinton.

I don’t think it’s coincidence that the people saying this were Clinton supporters. And I doubt they’d be saying the same of her if the situation were reversed. And it’s possible this wouldn’t bug me as much if I weren’t a fan of Sanders myself.

But it does bug me. Not because I dislike Clinton and not (only) because I support Sanders: because it speaks to a ridiculous, undemocratic sense of entitlement from some people of the left which I’ve seen far too often.

I get where it comes from. We all fervently believe we’re on the side of good, we all have a firm conviction that if we ran the world things would be rainbows and sunshine every day. And god it’s frustrating to see things go bad because the other team are in power instead. It feels like if there were any justice in the world, our team would always win every election in a landslide.

But to be a real democrat, to believe that democracy is the best way to choose who leads our government, requires a degree of humility. Knowing that you have to put the work in. You have to convince others of the merits of your case. You don’t make the decision: they do. Sometimes it’s not the one you want. Read more »

Good, online voting axed

I’m not a fan of online voting.

Local Government minister Louise Upston has axed a plan to have online voting in eight council elections in November .

Councillors in Wellington, Porirua, Masterton, Rotorua, Matamata Piako, Palmerston North,  Whanganui and Selwyn had voted to offer online voting as an option. And Local Government NZ was actively promoting it as a vehicle to boost participation as recently as January. They have now been over-ruled.

It was always pitched as a “trial” – presumably to make it less intimidating from a PR perspective – but it was going to be the real thing: Online votes in November would have been legal and binding. It would have been better termed a pilot.

“Security testing has been planned but has not yet occurred. Without seeing the results of testing we cannot be confident the systems are secure enough, and the trial could not be authorised,” Ms Upston says. The system needs more work, she says.   Read more »