Saturday, March 31, 2012

Earth Hour? Try Earth day. Weekly.

Tonight was Earth hour.  So for one hour, you turn off lights.  There is no effect on electricity usage as its all off peak.  If you are a large company or government, avoid at your peril lest you be labelled an earth hater.  A very effective form of mind control.  Except it really has no effect.

Well, how about this.  If you participated in Earth hour, then I challenge you to participate in Earth Day.  Don't use any cars or computers or TVs or phones or other technology for 25 hours.  Sundown Friday to nightfall Saturday.  OK, now do it every week for a year.  Once you do that, then come back to me about Earth hour.

BREAKING NEWS:  Earth day is actually real.  April 22 apparently (a sunday).  sigh.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Miriam Margoyles coming to Palmerston North

Miriam Margoyles has announced that she will perform in Palmerston North.

This is the location that John Cleese called the "suicide capital of the world".

Miriam Margoyles also accused Monty Python of being anti-semites

I didn’t like them. They were anti-Semites and they didn’t like women and they didn’t like me, because I was a, at that time probably a pushy little broad. And they weren’t interested in people like me.
So, I wonder if there is a relationship, or is it purely ironic?  Surely it will be picked up.

I wonder if MM will spend time in Palmerston North seeking out the Jewish Community.  I seriously doubt that she will bother, even though she is performing on Rosh Chodesh, which has significance to Women in Judaism.  And I'm not even mentioning her disgraceful support of Boycotting Israeli goods, artists and academics.

Jewish school attacked in France

This week saw some terrible news:  In France, a gunman attacked a Jewish school, and killed 4 people, including 3 children

Often when news appears like this we get caught up thinking "That's so far away", "it's completely different there".  For New Zealanders, most will not know of any local Jewish schools.  These are schools that receive regular threats via phone and post.  Schools that have to employ full time security guards.  As recently as 1990, there was a serious knife attack on students at Kadimah college in Auckland by a deranged woman.

Australia has much worse threats.  As a parent of children at Jewish Primary schools and kindergartens, it is very worrying.  We have terrorists in jail now that were planning attacks on Jewish Community centers.  This article eerily appeared in The Age in January.  Sadly, threats against Jewish lives, including children is very real here.

Whilst condemned the Muslim community in France stated they would "pray for the victims", it is sadly clear that many regard him as hero

In Australia and NZ, we have seen a few generalised condolence messages.  Mostly, it has been quiet.  Lets hope we never see a tragedy of this kind, that we need to ask ourselves the hard questions of how to prevent it.  Especially in the light of the Urewera trial.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Israeli art scammers

Stuff today reported that a team of Israeli art scammers have been told to leave New Zealand
Note:  Stuff's original headline was "Israelis told to quit the country", before they decided they needed to identify the specific group.

The scheme involved them knocking from door to door with a satchel of unframed paintings, saying they are art students that are looking help support themselves.  They are very friendly and polite, and are willing to talk you through every painting they have, and the style in which they did it.

I have to admit.  I have one of these paintings on a back wall.  From many years ago (in our old house, before we were even married).  I wanted to help these poor Israelis.  I know many people in Caulfield that do.

I have to say that in many ways I think it is Enterprising.  They were students, probably on their gap year, after the mandatory army service, where they have to put up with the daily horrors of Palestinian terror.  Living in a peaceful country like Australia or New Zealand, they are just trying to support themselves.

Except however it is dishonest, and because of that they lose their visitor visas.  This I agree with, and they need to realise that they are giving all Israelis a bad name.  Australians see so many rorts, that it wouldn't probably raise an eyebrow.  New Zealanders however are very trusting, and have long memories.  Uncovering something like this will cut much deeper.

I'm sure that every ethnic migrant or student visa group has some kind of rort or scam.  Many are much more sinister.  Drug smuggling, black markets, prostitution, people smuggling and worse.  Have a look at the local Mafias - many were started by migrant groups.  Selling cheap art door to door is mild in comparison.