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Separation of Mosque and State

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In what can best be described as political correctness on steroids, the New York City Board of Ed has established a school that focuses on teaching "Arabic language and culture."

I was a product of the NYC BOE, I went to NYC public schools nearly my entire childhood. Back then (a scant 20 years ago), people who wanted to get an education in a particular culture or religion would go to a private parochial school. Yeshiva for Jewish kids, Catholic school, etc. Back then the thinking was clear, there was a concept of separation of church and state. If you wanted an education centered around a religious and cultural ethic, you needed to find that type of study outside of the public(ly funded) school system.

However, things have changed quite a bit in the Big Apple. The very city that was attacked in 1993 and in 2001 by radical Muslims (to the tune of nearly 3000 dead innocent civilians) has in fact created a publicly funded school where everyone can learn about Arabic/Islamic culture. This means that so long as you live somewhere within the 50 states of this great country, you too are paying some small amount of your federal contribution to Islamic study. And if you live somewhere within the five boroughs, then you are paying more than a small amount.

But this is more than just an issue of separation of church and state, and it's bigger than just a budgetary concern. This is an insult to the melting pot society, which for well over a hundred years has defined the great city of New York.

Sure, some poor misguided folk, as featured in the linked article, might feel that attending such a school will broaden horizons and create opportunities. However, the vast majority of those attending will be of Islamic heritage. Just like Hispanic kids tend to take Spanish for the easy A, so will Muslim kids make the decision to attend this public madrassa. Add to that the concerns regarding Muslim assimilation into the American culture, their tendency to seclude themselves from the rest of Americana, and the concerns that such self-segregation is at the heart of local terrorist recruitment, the concept of such a school raises a much more negative specter.

Note that no such school on Jewish or Catholic "culture" exists within the public school system, and prayer in school continues to be a hotly debated topic.

Despite my Sisyphean burden of attending NYC public schools for most of my life, I managed to turn out okay. However, the experience has taught me a few things about the school system, most notably what it lacks. And what it lacks is proper teaching, resources, and motivated personnel.

The very last thing the school system needs is to be used, at taxpayer expense, as a politically correct sounding board. And for a city that has been victimized by radical Islam, this smacks of appeasement and weakness – not traits that I generally associate with New York.

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About The Obnoxious American

  • Dr Dreadful

    While I agree that the New York school system could have found better things to spend taxpayer money on, it’s a bit of a leap to call a school teaching Arabic language and culture a madrassa. Unless you can show that the school will be delivering religious instruction to its students, I’m calling this as a knee-jerk reaction.

  • moonraven

    Those schools and programs exist in other places besides New York.

    Obviously, they are a good idea, as the current polarization of the planet is almost completely due to the ignorance of the West in regard to Islamic culture.

    An ignorance clearly being promulgated by the ignoramus who wrote this piece.

    Note: I wouldlike to know just what credentials as a writer and or thinker Obnoxious American waved in front of the eyes of DaveNalle&Co to post this complete drivel. This is not the THIRD outrageously inept opinion piece–complete with a glaring error in the title: SepAration, idiots.

  • moonraven

    NOW the THIRD….

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Can you just imagine if the largish Jewish population demanded schools like this for Jews in NYC? Bear in mind that when I attended the public schools in new York City, at the time some of the best in the nation, the Jewish population was over two million people, more even than the population of Israel (then)!!

    There would be an uproar of liberal Jews screaming heresy, and non-Jews complaining of Jewish arrogance and contumely – what a geshrei there would be! But you can count on the cowardly and scared shitless American Jews not to demand such a thing for Jews in NYC. Rabbi Meir Kahane is so missed…

  • Nancy

    Clarification on this school: is it something like the German School, or the French School – i.e. magnets that specialize in certain language & cultural studies? or is it in fact a Muslim/Arabic school FOR primarily muslim/arabic students, & will religion be taught there? None of this is mentioned. I have no problem with a school that specializes in Arabic studies (language, cultural aspects, like the two European-centered schools above do) – altho frankly I can’t see how one can study Arabic/middle eastern studies without inbibing a hefty dose of religion into the bargain, since Islam permeates the culture & language.

    I wish OA had put in a few more facts about exactly what the curriculum is, & fewer opinions.

  • moonraven

    OA wouldn’t recognize a fact if it bit him in the ass–nor does he want to recognize any.

  • The Obnoxious American

    Nancy,

    Problem is there isn’t much detail provided by the NYC BOE regarding the curriculum in this school other than to say Arabic studies. Although as you said, it would be very difficult to separate the religious aspects in this line of study.

    Mind you that I would have less of a problem were this a school whose purpose is to focus on a particular language, although I’d have to wonder whether this fell into the role of public high school (this is really something that should be studied in College or post grad).

    Moonraven,

    Aside from the ad-hominem attacks of my intelligence, you might actually want to make a valid point here (or not, your choice). Note that I am fairly familiar with Islam, and have quite a few Muslim friends. This doesn’t mean that our tax dollars should be paying for this type of study, just like I’d feel it was inappropriate for a public high school to teach Judaic studies (I am jewish BTW).

    TOA

  • moonraven

    Your intelligence? You’ve gotta be shitting me.

    Your intelligence is not even the issue: the issues are: Your bigotry, your wild use of assumptions (if you know NOTHING about the curriculum, as you clearly have shown, why not just keep yourmouth shut?) and your general lack of writing skills.

    Being an asshole doesn’t make you a journalist (although sometimes it helps….)

  • moonraven

    Now to the valid point, which I already made so will simply copy and post:

    “Those schools and programs exist in other places besides New York.

    Obviously, they are a good idea, as the current polarization of the planet is almost completely due to the ignorance of the West in regard to Islamic culture.”

    I would recommend contributing a large FRACTION of the HUNDREDS of BILLIONS of tax dollars already spent invading the Muslim world to schools of this sort.

  • JustOneMan

    Ruvy…its already happend but even in a larger and more bizarre scale

    The New York Village of Kiryas Joel is a religious enclave of Satmar Hasidim, practitioners of a strict form of Judaism. Its incorporators intentionally drew its boundaries under the State’s general village incorporation law to exclude all but Satmars.

    Tax payers money going to a orthodox jewish school that wont let non jews attend…

    Imagine if this were a christian group..lol

    More nonsense from the liberal left…

    JOM

  • The Obnoxious American

    Moonraven,

    One post fully dedicated to calling me names then a second, with some actual points. I guess that’s some kind of progress :>

    My comments are not rooted in bigotry, this is a clear violation of the concept of separation of church and state. That it’s been done in other precincts does not make it right by any stretch.

    I am all for more understanding in the world, of course I expect the same in kind (although it has not been forthcoming).

    Note that we didn’t “invade the Muslim world” until after that fateful day in 2001. Your position is in my opinion akin to appeasement. Are you screaming for schools that teach American culture in the northern areas of Pakistan or in Iran?

  • JustOneMan

    Obnox…

    As a Jew are you also against the bullshit going on in Kiryas Joel in New York State?

    JOM

  • Baronius

    Moon, correcting ObAm’s spelling with typos was hilarious. Keep the chuckles coming.

    ObAm, nice work.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Obnoxious –

    Are you also part of The Tribe as JOM alleges, or is he just blowing smoke up everyone’s ass assuming that a New Yorker must, ipso facto, be a Jew?

    I’m not going to jump all over your ass – though if you’ve looked at my other comments I’ve already jumped all over the American Jews still in exile.

    As for the Satmar in New York, the less said about them, the better… They should live and be well – in Kiryas Yoel or Williamsburg.

  • The Obnoxious American

    JOM,

    Based entirely upon what you are saying, I’d agree that it is not too kosher :> mainly from the standpoint of government money paying for jewish-only study.

    However, note that you are talking about a small town in upstate NY which if you’ve ever been up there is a VERY jewish area, so there are not too many non-jews looking for basic education and getting forced out of schools. The same kind of scenario plays out in countless small christian towns across the US bible belt, which is in part what has spurred the whole prayer in schools debate.

    Also, as a general rule, Jews do integrate into the society that they live in. The same cannot be said of Muslims, and with the question of terrorist recruitment (which does not happen in Jewish circles either), the idea of a Madrassa is of concern.

  • JustOneMan

    The Obnoxious American – you have outed yourself as a “fake, phoney, fraud” – Bob Grant

    Hasidic Jews integrate into the society that they live in thats a blatant lie.. and this town in upstate New York is worse than the NY situation because it is all controlled by a looney cult pf Jews equal to the loony cult of Muslims..

    I guess government money for jews is OK.. but for muslims and god forbid Christians it wrong..

    You make me sick!

    JOM

  • The Obnoxious American

    Usually when I get people sick it’s with Herpes, but that’s another story :>

    Seriously though, if you want to make Hasidic Jews your cause, then by all means go ahead. Fact is that there is a huge difference between a small town in upstate NY that IS comprised mainly of jews getting fed money (just like many all catholic towns in the bible belt that also get fed dollars) versus an entire public school in New York City devoted to one religion, where there are thousands of children dropping out due to poor education. If you fail to see the difference here, then that’s your problem but it is different.

  • JustOneMan

    “just like many all catholic towns in the bible belt that also get fed dollars”

    Please name them…there arent any towns that have incorprated with the goal to subvert tax dollars to finance their religion..the only one in the US is a jewish community in New York…

    In addition I guess your advocating that NY public schools do away with all those religious holidays – Christian and Jewish..ironically all of the Christian holidays are now called spring break and winter break rather tha Easter and Christmas.. but the jewish holidays yum kippor and roshashanna are called by their jewish name..

    Doe we see a pattern here?

    JOM

  • The Obnoxious American

    Please name all catholic towns in the US? Jews make up something like 5% of the US populace, with the majority of those living on the coasts. There are COUNTLESS small towns in this great country who are inhabited by people of a single denomination.

    Why do you think the question of teaching creationism is even an issue? It’s because the teaching of evolution is in conflict with christianity. Taxpayer dollars will pay for those classes, and tax payer dollars are paying for the debate. Remember the scruffle regarding the ten commandments in the courtroom? Taxpayer dollars put those tablets there, paid to take them down, and paid for the judicial debate. These are just the two that came to mind fastest, there are countless other scenarios.

    As far as days off? I think the current set of days off should continue. I am fine with adding in Muslim holy days as well (although Ramadan might be a bit tough on the syllabus). There is a difference between the extreme that you are talking about, and common sense.

    JOM, I’d appreciate it if you didn’t try to put your nonsensical words in my mouth, and instead listened to the words I did say. Not sure what “pattern” your conspiracist mind is cooking up, but I am sure that I really don’t care.

  • JustOneMan

    gee what a non-response to a question..

    one more time

    Name the towns?

    there arent any towns that have incorprated with the goal to subvert tax dollars to finance their religion..the only one in the US is a jewish community in New York…

    I rest my case..you cant have it both ways..if you stop the Arabic school you have to close the funding for the jewish religious school in ny..

    JOM
    JOM

  • JustOneMan

    Obnox…are you an athiest or a jew??

    “Remember the scruffle regarding the ten commandments in the courtroom?” Wasnt Moses a Jew? Arent the 10 Commandments from the old testament?

    hmmmmmm….something about you just isnt right…

    JOM

  • The Obnoxious American

    >>>hmmmmmm….something about you just isnt right…

    That’s a sure pot calling the kettle moment. Listen my friend, obviously you have an axe to grind against hasidic jews, and that’s your problem but not relevant to the article. If you want to cast me as biased, that’s also your problem.

    I am willing to engage in a sensible debate with you relating to this article. However, you are trying to turn this discussion into something that is not relevant. If you’d like to post a blog relating to the issues you are bringing up I’d be happy to give it a read and post comments on it. But don’t come into this post trying (poorly I might add) to turn this valid concern I raise in my blog into your cause about an unrelated topic.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Ob-Am, although I share your frustration with JOM’s peculiarly uncharming ways, there is no requirement at BC for the comments to stay on topic to the original thrust of the article they accompany.

    Graceless as he is, isn’t JOM’s question worth an answer?

  • Graham McKnight

    Obnoxious American, you state that ‘this is a clear violation of the concept of separation of church and state.’

    I would agree with you had the course on offer been named ‘Islamic Studies’, but we are dealing with something that the academics have labled ‘Arabic Studies’. Arabic is a language, not a religion.

    Considering that your nation has implanted itself upon a number of Arabic speaking nations such as Iraq and Saudi Arabia, you ought to see this move as a positive step. The questioning of ‘Illegal Combatants’ would be made all the more easier with the abundance of qualified translators soon to graduate from the establishment in question, no?

    Seriously though, your argument is flawed from the outset as Islam and Islamic Studies will not play an integeral role in the syllabus of any institution that offers Arabic Studies.

  • JustOneMan

    lol lol..that didnt take long — rather than defend your opinion you have to make some sort of claim of anti semitism…oh wow..that will scare me a way..LOL LOL I was right you are a phoney…

    hey why dont you rename it Separation of Yeshiva and State

    Maybe Ruvy is right and you are part of what he calls the “cowardly and scared shitless American Jews”

    JOM

  • The Obnoxious American

    Which one? I am a Jew, Moses was a Jew and the ten commandments are from the old testament. However it seems to me that the ten commandments are shared between Christianity and Judaism, so I don’t get what the origin of the ten commandments has to do with anything.

    The Ten Commandments don’t belong in a courtroom of a country that believes in the separation of church and state, nor does prayer belong in schools. What JOM is describing is happening in upstate NY sounds wrong, and I said that previously, (although considering the source…) but let’s not pretend that this type of thing does not go on elsewhere in Christian precincts, it does. I think like all things, common sense and fairness should rule the day.

    If an entire town is of a particular faith, I really don’t care if there is some leaning towards the shared faith, within reason. And this applies to all faiths not just my own. This is not the same as creating a public school in a major and diverse city with a dedication towards one faith or culture.

  • JustOneMan

    Where in the US have citizens past laws to subvert tax dollars to pay for Christian religious services and or education?

    Name one municipality? You cannot….

    Name two things that Obnox lacks – “common sense and fairness”

    JOM

  • moonraven

    OA:

    All I did in my second post that you referred to was quote my first post. You are fucking reading-challenged, man.

    And you RUN on the platform of bigotry.

    Now, to the meat of the issue[Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor] :

    1. Show me FACTS that indicate that these schools violate the separation of church and state.

    2. When you TRY to do that, keep in mind that religion and culture are not the same.

    3. Also show me with FACTS that the Islamic community in New York has taken over the running of the city–that WOULD be a violation of the separation of church and state.

    You don’t have a fucking clue. [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor.]

  • The Obnoxious American

    Graham,

    If the studies in this school are limited to language only, as previously stated, I wouldn’t have as much of a concern (although I’d question the feasibility of this given that some NYC BOE students can’t even read english). That said, I don’t think it’s limited to Arabic only study, and has been pointed out by others, it’s difficult to separate the two.

    Jom,

    You’re right about me, well except for “Cowardly and scared s***less” part. ;> And BTW you are a bit anti semetic. Only because of your singular hatred. Seriously, dude, I am telling you this not because I happen to disagree with you, it’s the vehemence. Note that I don’t share the same level of vehemence towards against any group of people out there. I hope one day you see the err in your ways and correct yourself young man.

  • moonraven

    What a laugh–OA, you are definitely not for real–nobody would ever use “dude” and “young man” in the same comment.

    You don’t THINK it’s limited to Arabic only!!!!?????

    You write a piece without knowing squat and then you rub our noses in it.

    [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor.]

  • The Obnoxious American

    Moonraven,

    There most certainly is a difference between the cultural and religious side, I am not at all religious, but extremely in touch with my culture as a Jew. However, don’t try to tell me that they are not related or that learning one has nothing to do with the other. The main difference between the two is a matter or practice, the underlying principles and beliefs are the same.

    Just like I’d object to an NYC PUBLIC high school that focused on Jewish culture, I object to this school.

    As far as your point about Muslims taking over the NYC government, not quite sure what you are talking about, I’ve never alledged any such thing.

    There is an old saying, never argue with fools because people on the outside can’t tell who is who. With that said, I am all faklempt. Discuss amongst yourselves.

  • JustOneMan

    The Obnoxious American yes I am very impressed by your love for tha Arab race…you really are a low life again inflecting anti-semitism as you bash Muslims….

    I hope one day you see the err in your ways and correct yourself you old fart.

    JOM

  • moonraven

    And to think that I had to do a Yahoo search FOR YOU!

    This information was published in May of 2007 in PART of an article in the International Herald Tribune:

    “The new school is the Khalil Gibran International Academy, named for the Lebanese Christian author of “The Prophet,” which will have just 81 sixth graders to start and then expand from there. It will be the first publicly run place of learning in this city dedicated to Arab culture and the Arabic language. The plan is that after a few years, half of its classes will be taught in Arabic.

    In some ways the new school will merely be one more item in the great American multiethnic panorama. Ever since diversity became the reigning metaphor in American life (replacing the melting pot), New York has opened schools where classes are taught in Spanish, Mandarin Chinese, Russian and Haitian Creole. Why should the Khalil Gibran Academy be any different?

    But nothing can be removed from its context, especially when the context is global guerrilla war, and that’s what makes the Khalil Gibran School different from the other dual-language schools, not in concept but in public perception and, some fear, in effect.

    Unavoidably, the new academy is caught in the post-Sept. 11 mood, where pertinent and urgent questions are being asked about the compatibility of the Arab, and especially the Islamic Arab, culture with the values of liberal democracy.

    Tthough, until recently, there was no sign that the New York public was especially concerned about the Khalil Gibran school. Most people who knew about it seemed to see it as a reasonable gesture to an Arab immigrant community that often feels estranged from the surrounding American society. It would be a gesture that might even help put the lie to the radical Islamic portrayal of American society as irrevocably hostile to Arabs and to Islam.

    The first group that raised objections to the school were parents at an elementary school in the borough of Brooklyn that was originally designated to house the new academy, but their gripe had nothing to do with the Arabic aspect of things. They were worried that the new school would take up too much space and interfere with the educational mission of the existing school.

    But a handful of other critics, mostly on Internet sites and among commentators at the daily New York Sun newspaper, has been very hostile to the new school. They have labeled it a “madrasa,” a Muslim fundamentalist school, and, as we all know, madrasas are not just hostile to democratic values but are threatening to our safety and security.

    In approving the school, one commentator in The Sun said last week, New York “is bowing down in homage to accommodate and perhaps groom future radicals.”

    DEDICATED TO ARAB CULTURE AND ARABIC LANGUAGE.

    Now I know a LOT more than the OP did when he posted his screed, and all I did was read a few articles from a Yahoo search–including the most recent one about a CATHOLIC group that is threatening to sue.

    The Catholics have been demanding public funding of their schools for as long as I can remember….

    Talk about an axe to grind.

  • moonraven

    OA, This is my FIINAL comment to you in ANY lifetime:

    If the Muslim community took over the running of the city, that would violate the by-law separation of church and state.

    That separation would ONLY be violated in regard to the school IF, and ONLY if, the Muslim community FORCED the NYC Public School System teach the Islamic RELIGION in all of its schools.

    I suppose even now you are too thick-headed to understand?!

  • moonraven

    schools, plural.

  • The Obnoxious American

    Moonraven,

    Let me say that I’ve known about this school since the beginning, and have read all the same press releases and articles, including this one. The IHT is hardly unbiased for one and this article is hardly talking about both sides of the story.

    Read my article, it features a link to CNN, which in this case is a bit less biased than IHT. Although it’s worth noting once again that if Arabic “culture” is to be taught in this school, then that will include all manner of religious beliefs.

    Further, even in the IHT article you posted, it admits that the purpose here is as a “gesture to an Arab immigrant community that often feels estranged from the surrounding American society” which was the original point of my article (“political correctness on steroids” – it’s in my first sentence for cryin out loud).

    Part of the point of coming to America is to assimilate into the culture that is here. My great grandparents, who came here and felt estranged solved their problems by trying to become American, as did yours (assuming you are American). Why didn’t my ancestors need a “gesture?” Why should my tax dollars be spent on a gesture for any group that happens to feel estranged after coming here?

    And as I’ve made clear in this discussion countless times now, I wouldn’t support this if it was catholic in nature either.

  • moonraven

    CNN is less biased that the IHT?????????????!!!!!!!

    They are both mouthpieces for the system, bonehead.

    I lied, apparently when I said I would not respond to any more of your comments–I DELIBERATELY selected the IHT BECAUSE it is right of center to say the least.

    And I couldn’t give a fuck about your ancestors, since, as my name indicates, I am NATIVE AMERICAN!

    For the LAST TIME, teaching ABOUT a CULTURE is not INDOCTRINATING one in a RELIGION.

    [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor.]

  • moonraven

    Let me give a clue to everybody on this site: OA is wrong when he says that folks go to the US to assimilate.

    They don’t.

    At least from MY part of the world. They are going to take back what they believe was rightfully theirs.

    Even though it wasn’t.

    But you’d better damn well start learning Spanish anyway….

  • The Obnoxious American

    Moonraven,

    I would advise in future debates with anyone (hopefully not me as you promised) to debate the idea, rather than chastise the person. But clearly you use this tactic to make up for a lack of knowledge. If you do ever decide to respond to one of my blogs, please give it a thorough read first.

    As far as the IHT, the article you posted was clearly biased in favor of the school. CNN in their article tried to represent both sides. Notice that IHT didn’t mention the ex-principle of the school who wore an “intifada” tee shirt and was subsequently fired (and replaced by a jew). This type of reporting is basic journalism, which was missing from the IHT story (which basically used it’s platform to defend the school rather than report on it).

    To say that in order for there to be a violation of the separation of church and state, Muslims would have to take over the entire school system and force teachings down everyones throat is pure nonsense. I wish I could engage you on a reasonable debate of the issues not this hysterical, profanity laden nonsense that you seem to try and pass off for opinion. I would be thrilled if I never had to respond to your drivel again.

    Just like a school dedicated to teaching Jewish, Catholic, Buddhist or Hindi “culture” would be a violation, so is a school centered on arabic “culture”. And given that it’s being done as a politically correct gesture, well I will simply paste in my last sentence from the original article I wrote (which clearly you did not read), “The very last thing the school system needs is to be used, at taxpayer expense, as a politically correct sounding board. And for a city that has been victimized by radical Islam, this smacks of appeasement and weakness – not traits that I generally associate with New York.”

  • moonraven

    Unfortunately, I did read your piece.

    It was just the rant of a bigot, like everything else you have posted on this site.

    What you do not know–which is OBVIOUSLY everything–you just make up.
    [Personal attack deleted by Comments Editor]

  • JustOneMan

    “The very last thing the school system needs is to be used, at taxpayer expense, as a politically correct sounding board” unless it is Jewish community in New York…

    What a phony…

    JOM

  • moonraven

    You are NEVER going to engage me in “reasonable debate” about anything because:

    1. You have no debating skills, and

    2. You have no facts and information on which to base a REASONED POSITION.

  • Baronius

    #34 18:13PM

    This is my final comment…

    #35 18:14PM

    Moon, you’re funnier than ever today.

  • http://www.elitebloggers.com Dave Nalle

    Being an asshole doesn’t make you a journalist (although sometimes it helps….)

    After all, it’s what Moonraven and MCH have based their pathetic newspaper careers on. I suspect it’s their failure to rise to any kind of national or even regional prominence as journalists – inevitable because of their limited skills – which has made them so hostile and bitter.

    Dave

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    You can be pretty hostile yourself Dave, so I’d stick to the old people in glass houses line if I were you…

  • The Obnoxious American

    Jom,

    I already told you that I didn’t agree with the story there, or at least your telling of it. I may have made the same point at least 30 different times in this thread. Your choice whether you want to keep on ranting though, I’m sure BC loves the ad impressions.

    Moonraven:

    When you made the following comments:

    “Let me give a clue to everybody on this site: OA is wrong when he says that folks go to the US to assimilate.

    They don’t.

    At least from MY part of the world. They are going to take back what they believe was rightfully theirs.”

    The conversation was over. You obviously hate America, don’t understand America. So sorry for you but there really is no point in debating with someone the ideals that this great country was founded upon when you simply look at America as an opportunity to “take back what you believe is yours.” Good luck with that. :>

  • chs

    Hi all
    As I came across the comments here,
    I would like clarify one little think even its not relevant to the article but relevant to the comments:
    Kiryas Joel Union Free Public School – is not like a private Jewish school
    Kiryas Joel Union Free Public School – is a school “only” for special education / children and developmentally disabled
    Kiryas Joel Union Free Public School – is not a religious school = yes its run by Jewish people for Jewish kids (of that village) but is not a religious school

    You might ask: are they praying there? Are they getting teached about Jewish holidays?
    Most probably and that’s only because what else do you want this kids to be teached (since they are disabled) whatever they know from their parents and family and what they are familiar
    But this school is build the studies the daily schedule and everything is to help them out
    But not as a religious school
    Does anyone has a problem that special Ed kids are getting the help they so desperately need????
    What is the bashing in here – and JOM you are also not bringing real life facts and you are only trying to put it down as a religious school funded by the government = incorrect
    [Written by someone that has relatives there]

  • JustOneMan

    CHS…your Bias is showing…this is a community that has subverted tax payer dollars to fund a school run by a religious cult.

    Its a Free Public School for the religous zealots in this “private community”. Imagine if this was Christian School you wouldnt be as loose with the facts..

    JOM

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Not so Obnoxious (compared to some other commenters here),

    I apologize. I did not fully read comment #7.

    I’ll keep my peace, as I promised to do. For a dose of what I do think and feel free to go to comments #85 & 89 at this article at Blogcritics Magazine, or you can view my own writers page as well.

  • moonraven

    The ultimate idiocy has now arrived on blogcritics:

    OA says that I, a member of the First Nations (Native American for those of you racists who just don’t fucking keep up with politically correct language), hate America and obviously don’t understand America because I want to take back what I believe is mine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    God that’s funny.

    This guy should be taken out and bronzed–and set outside a lowroller tavern someplace in the Bronx.

    The reality is that I LIVE in part of AMERICA, but I do hate the US. And I do understand the US very well–it was based on the right to globalize greed, violence and poverty and the Supreme Right to Shop at WalMart.

    I understand the fucking enemy only too well.

  • Baronius

    Moon, this is your sixth comment since you promised your last comment to ObAm in any lifetime. Please, please, please follow through on your promise.

  • moonraven

    I only said I would not comment to OA.

    But, truth be told, I can do whatever I feel like doing.

    [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor.]

  • Clavos

    “I, a member of the First Nations (Native American for those of you racists who just don’t fucking keep up with politically correct language)”

    Or Indian, for those of us who delight in being politically incorrect.

  • moonraven

    Actually, WE say Indians.

    But rednecks who call US Indians are subject to scalping.

    I am hanging up your few pitiful grey hairs (a la Homer Simpson) outside now, so that the scalp can dry out and stop stinking before it comes into my teepee.

    Nothing follows a quick scalping better than a few enchiladas verdes….

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Hey Clavos, would that mean moonraven has a red neck?

  • The Obnoxious American

    I really don’t care whether Moonraven wants to post or not. But it’s silly to continue my conversation with her on this topic, as she has made it quite clear that she hates this great country. It’s like trying to debate journalistic ethics with someone who works at the National Enquirer, only much more annoying.

    Incidentally, I hang out in the Bronx quite often, and once after doing many shots of Patron, you could say I was bronzed.

    Anyways, my deepest condolences to you Moonraven, it must really be annoying to hate this great country, have absolutely no power to change it and have to sit by while it continues to be the greatest country ever conceived by humanity. Kinda bet on the wrong horse on that one eh?

    What I don’t get is why you continue to live here? Certainly there are many other countries who (in your mind) are better suited to your citizenship. Perhaps Iran?

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    moonraven, the only scalping you are capable of being involved in would be ticket scalping. You couldn’t go three rounds with a muppet.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Ob-Am, for your information, moonraven doesn’t live in the USA, she lives in Mexico.

    Also, whilst the USA is indeed a great country, it is plagued with several major problems; out of control religious mania [making it a kind of anti-Iran perhaps? ;-)]; out of control over-weaponisation; excessive legislation that nobody seems able to stop, leading to one of the biggest prison populations anywhere; an over-developed taste for state killing and finally, a population that is immodest to the point of egomania and smugness.

    That’s why it consistently fails to make the Top 10 Nations in terms of quality of life.

    I like the place myself, despite it’s juvenile over-confidence, it reminds me of myself when I was a teenager!

  • Baronius

    Moon, four of your subsequent comments were replies to ObAm. You can do whatever you want to, but your word has no value.

    ObAm, this has nothing to do with you. I’m just in a mood. But years from now (should you keep writing here), you’ll look back on this article and realize how blessed you were to meet JOM and MR at the same time. And I hope you do keep writing here – this has been a good first week.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Not so Obnoxious,

    Something you should bear in mind. Those of us who are ex-pats are ex-pats for a reason.

    Marthe Raymond has been riding the rag with her on-screen persona, moonraven, making nasty comments all over the place, but she is a real woman with real feelings and her hatred of the United States has real roots. Americans committed genocide on the Native American population for about 350 years or so – much like the Roman savages did to us (and your ancestors) in Israel.

    That’s a fact, no matter how much you or any other “proud American” tries to waltz around it. And Marthe refuses to feel victimized by that genocide; she wants no pity or sympathy. Indeed, she needs none. But she feels free to pour her scorn and contempt on her persecutors and murderers of her ancestors – the Americans.

    Her view of America is much like mine of Germany or Rome – and increasingly of America, the land where I was born…

  • Dr Dreadful

    Since no-one seems to know exactly what this school is going to be about, or what its curriculum is, I wonder if we should just wait and see before getting on our high horses.

    If it intends to violate the First Amendment, it would seem to make sense to give them some rope. That way, if it comes to a court case –

    Another point: again, Arabic culture does not equal Islam. Not all Arabs are Muslim, for one thing.

  • The Obnoxious American

    Thanks Baronius! I do intend to keep on posting, which should make me very popular in MR and JOM’s book :>

    Chris,

    Certainly there are flaws, I think the democracy that has been created here has no shortage of issues, but it’s still the best invention man ever made.

    I will say that I don’t really agree that the US is not one of the 10 best in terms of quality of life. I have a feeling (I could be wrong here) that part of what goes into that judgement are eurocentric social/political things like whether we have government sponsored healthcare (we don’t thankfully) and the longest life expectancies (we don’t because we eat too much :>). We may not make the 10 best in quality of life, but I am pretty sure we are the number one destination for immigrants, at least when we open our doors to them.

    To your point about overweaponization, I also tend to believe that America’s second ammendment is one of our greatest assets. I frankly don’t think there are enough people who have guns. In countries where the populace is unarmed by the government, it’s much easier for things like tianamen square to happen. I’m not saying we should be driving around in pickups firing AK 47’s in the air or anything like that, but each citizen of a free country should have the inalienable right to own a firearm for self defense and the possibility of defending the homeland.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Ob-Am, as Dave Nalle would point out if he were here, the USA isn’t a democracy, it’s a representative republic. Your constitution serves to prevent the tyranny of democracy, which is a good thing.

    Gun freaks always throw up the defending democracy theory but it is total BS. If your government ever did turn the military on the citizenry, you wouldn’t last five minutes.

    Of course you can’t accept the quality of life thing, it goes with the teenage perspective but don’t let it spoil your fun.

  • The Obnoxious American

    Ruvy,

    I would suggest that MR has you post her feelings, rather than her do it herself, as you are much more eloquent and make a much better case.

    I can’t defend what happened in this country so many years ago, it was clearly wrong. I don’t think the current “solution” of providing reservations or gambling licenses really addresses anything, and I have my doubts that the proceeds of such programs really benefit the majority of displaced Native Americans.

    I’m also embarrassed by our history with slavery and the resulting prejudice that my American ancestors continued to perpetrate until only very recently (and still in some areas). As far as I can tell, although slavery was practiced in most other countries at the time, racism was not.

    As a Jew, I definitely get my fair share of racism, most of the time people don’t even realize I am jewish and make some offhanded comment about cheapness or whatnot, and each time it’s a problem.

    It’s also arguable whether we should have dropped nukes in WWII although I understand the argument that more lives were saved by not having to invade. Still…

    At the end of the day, when the bill is tallied, much more good has resulted from the existence of this great country than bad. We’ve made our mistakes, as have others. We’ve learned from them as well.

    However, none of this gives MR the right to continue to hold a grudge. I hate Nazis, but I don’t hate Germans. There are plenty of German Jews out there, should I hate them? As soon as you imbibe in the poison fruit of generalizing your hatred, you become as bad as any racist or prejudicial person out there. So in effect MR, in her stereotyping of me as a supporter of Native American genocide, is guilty of the same kind of prejudice that the Nazi’s that you and I hate are guilty of. No way can I make an excuse for that.

    Ruvy, I’d like to add that I’ve read some of your thoughts, and I think you are trying to do the right thing by raising Jewish nationalism. From my view, I am an American and a Jew. It’s impossible for me to seperate the two. If I had no homeland, I would be in Israel, but I was born here, this is my country, and I will never turn my back on her. That said, I have plenty of relatives there, some of which came there after WWII (escaping the camps). Thank god for Israel, and thank god for America too, as there likely would not be one without the other.

  • The Obnoxious American

    “Gun freaks always throw up the defending democracy theory but it is total BS. If your government ever did turn the military on the citizenry, you wouldn’t last five minutes.”

    Chris, the fact is that if you were a commander in the military, and you had to turn the military on the people, whether or not the people were armed would most certainly impact your decision at best and at least, your tactics. The armed populace in Iraq has shown just how much power an armed people actually do have against a formal military. Your position amounts to apathy and frankly, I’d rather be armed than not.

    “Of course you can’t accept the quality of life thing, it goes with the teenage perspective but don’t let it spoil your fun.”

    Thanks for calling my perspective teenager, but I’ll go with the numbers of visa applications over some euro top ten list.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Ob-Am – now you are acting like a teen; nobody said anything about tactics but, whether you like it or not, it is a stone cold fact that the military would win. Let’s just hope it never happens.

    I called your country teenage, meaning it is young, and like all youngsters, many of them are prone to inappropriate over-reaction. Thanks for providing supporting evidence!

  • Clavos

    “whether you like it or not, it is a stone cold fact that the military would win”

    That assumes the military (who are themselves citizens) would willingly fight the citizens.

    Some probably would, but enough?

  • The Obnoxious American

    I think an impartial reading of my comments would provide evidence of fairness and open mindedness. Note that you are the one throwing the disparaging comments at me, not the other way around. The age of either of our countries does not factor into the maturity level of this discourse, as evidenced by your own posts. But feel free to think you are of superior lines all you like my dear friend.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Clavos, I think this game of hypotheticals has gone on long enough.

    Ob-Am, saying you were a stupid jerk would be throwing a disparaging remark your way. I expressed an opinion you dislike and now you’re pouting.

    Of course the age of national cultures affects what happens there. Nations develop and grow just as people do; what is a nation without people after all? One of the great things about new life, whether a nation or a person, is the sense of new possibilities it brings.

    I don’t think i’m superior, nor did I say so, that’s just something your ego made up. On the other hand, your maturity is revealed by the fact that you prefer to be known as “The Obnoxious American” rather than by your name.

    By the way, you use the wrong form of “its” twice in your mini bio above. You should fix that up, both for grammar and sentiment.

    There’s nothing wrong with being proud of your country, indeed, it would be weird not to be. That goes for every country in the world.

    On the other hand, no country nor person is perfect. That doesn’t mean that the USA should “tuck our tails between our legs and run crying to the UN for forgiveness”, which is frankly quite an odd idea; almost teenage in its poutiness you might say. ;-)

  • moonraven

    It is dead wrong to be proud of one’s country.

    Nationalism and jingoism have caused ALL the evils that have beset the planet.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Wrong again, moonraven. There is nothing at all wrong about being proud of a country’s achievements, just as there is nothing wrong, say, with you being proud of your daughter’s.

    It’s also not true that nationalism and jingoism have caused drug addiction or betraying one’s loved ones, to name just two evils amongst many that beset our planet.

  • The Obnoxious American

    Well I took the teenage remark as disparagement (whether directed at myself or my country), not sure how otherwise I could read it. However given your statements to the contrary, while I was not pouting, I will happily do the opposite (whatever that is).

    The reason why I am called The Obnoxious American has to do with some of the concerns my less vertebrate-enabled countrymen have about traveling abroad. Some even claim to be from Canada! Whenever I travel abroad, I welcome the debate, not run from it. I tend to find that most people in other countries don’t hate us nearly as much as we tend to think.

    That said, there is this sentiment that we should hand over our sovereignty to an international body such as the UN. And this is pure insanity. While the EU states are heavily invested in this process, we are not, and we need to make decisions based on what’s best for the US, not whats best for a group of eight (should be seven) nations, some of ill repute.

    Thanks for the copy editing. I might send you some of my articles in the future for proofing. Thanks again!

  • moonraven

    Absolute nonsense!

    Being proud of a country is WRONG, precisely, because it leads to condoning WRONG actions by one’s country in the name of patriotism–the last refuge, if I am not mistaken according to both Dr. Samuel Johnson and Bob Dylan.

    Drug addiction of course is caused by nationalism–by the cognitive dissonance created when the mind sees that everything one’s country does is EVIL and yet is told that it is the epitome of virtue.

    I do not believe it is one of the major problems on the planet, however.

    As for betraying one’s loved one’s–that simply does not exist. If you love someone you do not betray him or her.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Not so Obnoxious,

    I’m sure that there are some fools who would find your views obnoxious – but you are not even anywhere near the obnoxious folks on here…

    I don’t necessarily agree with you, but your views are not obnoxious. A little out-dated is more accurate. But that is not why I’m writing.

    The play, The Melting pot was written by Israel Zangwill in 1900. I read the play, and understood the irony in it. The main character is a Jewish immigrant just off the boat who falls in love with his Christian social worker. The melting pot is when first stirred when he marries her. Zangwill’s prescience in predicting the future of what would happen to Jews in America was scary.

    The play is all about the “goldeneh medineh” that America represented to Jews for a long time, including Jews like my grandfather and father, may their memories both be for a blessing. But it has ceased to be so. The plague that Zangwill warned of in his play, intermarriage, is destroying much of the Jewish community in your country. Gas chambers at least kill people obviously. The threat is clear. Intermarriage kills nobody and only leaves tears of pain in the hearts of the parents who see their heritage slipping away in the hothouse of passion. A nation of people can die by sleeping with the wrong people just as easily as they can be executed.

    As for feeling guilty over what happened to the Native Americans, I never did – when those good Christian cowboys were spreading syphilis, Jesus and death among the Indians, my grandfather was struggling in a Russian shetl. So the goyim can feel guilty if they want to, and gamble in the Indian ca$inos. The solution of ca$inos stinks, but getting anything like reparations out the US government for the genocide they committed is a galaxy away.

    The school you wrote about, from all that I have read about it, is just another example of the sad state to which public education has fallen to in America. I’m not bragging about Israel, just bewailing trash both here and there.

    Finally, I ask you take a very serious look at what your government has been doing to this country. Follow the article I sent you to and the comments I posted subsequently.

    And then think long and hard about “I was born here, this is my country, and I will never turn my back on her.” It’s an admirable sentiment. My mother, may her memory be only for a blessing, would agree with you. But unlike most Americans, you have a viable option to consider….

  • moonraven

    Maybe I was too subtle in assuming the reference was Known:

    PATRIOTISM IS THE LAST REFUGE OF SCOUNDRELS.

  • The Obnoxious American

    Moonraver,

    You’re very entertaining I must say. Do you have a pic?

    I’ve been all over this great big world my dear. Even to Mexico (and no, not to a resort thank you very much). If you want to get technical, I went to Hermocillo in Mexico. Some of the best mex food I ever had in fact. I had to pay the Federale 20 bucks to get out of customs because I didn’t have a passport. True story.

    And I will continue to travel, although as a Jew, I can’t go to certain places in the middle east (even though I’d love to). Do you know that certain middle east countries won’t let you out of the airport if they see Israel stamped on your passport? Seriously.

    Next places to go? Well I think I’d like to see the french riviera, riding mopeds in saint tropez as my man p diddy likes to say. But that won’t be for a while.

  • Dr Dreadful

    I agree, Capt. Obnoxio. There’s nothing wrong with being proud of your nationality, especially if you’re representing your country abroad. When my (American) wife was younger and traveling in Europe, she was often besieged by advice along the lines that she should put a Canadian flag patch on her backpack, not speak loudly, try to disguise her accent, etc. I’m glad to say she ignored the advice.

    You’re also right to say that most “foreigners” don’t hate Americans indiscriminately. What does annoy us is Americans abroad who either (a) boast about how much better America is than wherever they happen to be, or (b) expect everything to be the same as it is at home, or (c) both. (To some extent that’s true of travelers of any nationality, but Americans tend to have it in spades.)

    Unfortunately, my wife was also in the habit, when encountering some aspect of a foreign culture she didn’t like (usually some kind of practical inconvenience), of saying loudly, “In America…” I’m glad to say that this didn’t deter me from marrying her!

    On your second point, while I understand America needing to act in its best interests, that often has to be balanced with international concerns, because much of what America does affects the rest of the world profoundly. It’s not a question of giving up your sovereignty, but of recognizing your responsibility as a member of the community of nations.

  • moonraven

    HermoSillo is only two centimeters across the border, world traveler. Pull the other one.

    Who are the federale? Sounds like something out of Blazing Saddles. And the Aduana of Mexico doesn’t check you when you leave, nor do their folks look at your passport when you enter–that’s the Immigration Office.

    [Personal attack deleted by Comments Editor]

    Since the Middle East is one of the places that I provide consulting services to universities I am aware of the Israel passport stamp issue.

    The Riviera–hah! I don’t want any of my time-out haunts such as Nice, Sainte-Maxime or Antibes polluted by the likes of you.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Ob-Am, I have never heard anybody anywhere argue that national sovereignty should be handed over to the UN, either in the USA or here in Europe.

    I have heard a lot of extremist loons in the USA banging on in a fairly paranoid way about the so-called New World Order but only extremists are taking that kind of idea seriously.

    Europe is a union of states pooling their sovereignty to a limited extent, rather like what happened long ago in the United Kingdom or more recently in the United States. Personally, I favour a United States of Europe, which would produce the somewhat unique circumstance of a nation which was simultaneously young and old. That will be interesting!

    Whether it will be fully realised in my lifetime is unclear at least. However, I think you can take it as a cast iron certainty that there won’t be a United Nations of Planet Earth or anything like it for a very, very long time, if at all. The prospect is so remote that I don’t see much point in struggling against it.

    As to the copy editing, I am both an article editor and the comments editor for this site so let me know if you want a hand with anything such as correcting errors or if you have any editing related questions.

    Moonraven, correcting you is like 10 Pin Bowling, you just can’t miss!

    Excessively rigid or dogmatic pride in one’s country can lead one astray but it is not written in stone that it must be that way. Most people sensibly avoid the excessive love or, in your case, hate, that is typical of the extremist.

    Sure, people shouldn’t betray their loved ones but it happens all the time. Your anger about this leads me to wonder if it has happened to you?

  • The Obnoxious American

    Dr Dreadful,

    It’s interesting that you say that about the US’s decisions impacting other countries, and I think this is at least some of the source of raw nerves that is encountered when Americans travel abroad.

    I don’t travel expecting things to be the same, part of the joy of traveling are the differences, sometimes even the little differences. That said, I do think that the food in the US (at least near NYC) is way better than say the UK. BLEEEAACH!

    On the point of international cooperation, let me say that I am not against working with the UN mind you. However, I have some raw nerves due to this whole Iraq debacle. And it is a debacle for sure. However, given the flaccidity of the inspections regime at the time (leading to doubts of UNSCOM’s effectiveness), and the oil for food scandal (which rendered sanctions meaningless), I’m not sure that the world (not just the US) was best served by the UN at the time. Given this reality, certainly the UN and the countries that contributed to the atmosphere at the time were at least partially responsible for the decision to go to war in Iraq. People don’t really talk about this aspect of the war and just chalk it up to Bush warmongering. But unless we are putting on our hindsight fantasy glasses, it’s a fact that the inspections were less than what was desired, and the UN was not acting in a responsible manner. What a shame for all of us, including those that have respect for such an institution.

    Ruvy,

    I totally understand where you are coming from. There is certainly a case to be made that America has not stood by Israel as much as it could or should have in the last 10-20 years. It is politically popular here to strive for peace in the middle east and as such, the situation there has turned into a political football here. That said, I happen to believe Bush has helped Israel more than if there was a leftist in office at this very moment. We shall see what happens should Hillary get elected in 2008.

    Interfaith marriage is a tough one, but there are thriving communities of jews here and many interfaiths, the non-jewish partner converts, for what that’s worth. Still I totally understand your point, it’s hard to really argue with what you are saying.

  • moonraven

    I repeat: If you love someone you do not betray him or her. It’s axiomatic, Watson. And it has nothing to do with anger.

    I have never been betrayed, nor have I betrayed anyone else. Not my style at all–I am up front and in your face–not sneaking around and being a coward.

    You have yet to win a single point from me, pinche brit–and moreover, you never will.

    Not entirely your fault, maybe: Since you have made such an issue about teenagers and have such an intense dedication to ageism, I am now convinced for sure that you are, in fact, a teenager.

    And misogynism is not unusual among the younger teen boys jerking each other off in the bathroom, either. Guess that’s what attracted you to this site.

    Well, that–plus its low standards for editors–subject verb agreement not being one of the basic lanaguage skills required.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    I dunno, you talk a guy down from the dizzy heights of delusion and as soon as you turn your back they go right back up there”

    Ob-Am, your depiction of events prior to the war on Iraq is a heady concoction of wishful thinking and outright nonsense. Get down off that ledge now before you hurt yourself.

    The UN was just on the verge of establishing, correctly, that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq when your government forced the pace and took us to war on what were and are entirely false pretenses.

    It is the Bush government that behaved irresponsibly and caused one ofthe most disastrous international events of recent times, one that has achieved little apart from making the world a far more dangerous place.

  • moonraven

    Right, giving Israel 30 BILLION bucks is really leaving it in the lurch.

    [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor.]

  • Lumpy

    So much to respond to…

    [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor.]

    Is this MR’s new sig line or does the last half of every comment get deleted.

    Ruvy – Americans didn’t commit genocide on the native races 350 years ago. That was the european colonial powers. And no one I’ve today was even involved in the non-genocidal indian wars of the 1870s.

    Someone mentioned religiously homgeneous comminities with state funded schools which cater to the religious community. Catholics aren’t a good example in the modern era, but how about Mormons?

    Good to see Christopher called out on his elitism and condescension.

    BTW OA seems to be holding his own with the trolls. But I would have thought JoM would agree with him more here. Must be the jewish factor.

  • The Obnoxious American

    MR,

    Hermisillo is an hour south of LA by JET PLANE so a little bit more than just two centimeters across the border. Sorry if this doesn’t qualify as Mexico to you, but I am pretty sure the Mexicans whom I met (who were very nice and taught me the intricacies of tequila) would very much disagree with you.

    Chris,

    I agree with you regarding a United States of Europe, but given the long standing traditions and identities of each country in Europe, it will be a tough sell. But it would make backpacking for gringos like myself across the continent a bit easier :>

    Honestly, if everyone just cut the crap, it would be really good to have a United States of the World (or whatever you would call it). But thats going to take a few more thousand years I think. In the meantime, we can commiserate as citizens in the Internet Country.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    moonraven, you just never learned that when you’re in a hole, the first thing to do is to stop digging. Your theory that I am a teenager is as wrong as everything else your hate-filled mind contributes to this site.

    Lumpy, I am neither an elitist (that’s Dave Nalle by the way) nor condescending. Do try to get that chip off your shoulder, it’s making you unbalanced! lol.

    Ob-Am, On your last comment, we are in total agreement. Cool, huh? ;-)

  • The Obnoxious American

    Chris,

    With all due respect, I was as avidly aware of the political events then as I am now, and I remember what happened. I’m not placing all of the blame for going into Iraq on the UN, Bush deserves quite a large amount of the credit for sure.

    However, we cannot deny the reality that he did not have a solid partner in the UN as far as weapons inspection and sanctions. Hans was going to certify them as weaponless after years of hide and seek inspections? We all know the media accounts of inspectors showing up at the front doors and IRG leaving out the back. After the Iraqis submitted that 12,000 page document of their weapons inventory, the same 12,000 pages they smugly submitted before, it’s difficult to believe that UNSCOM could certify anything.

    And let’s not forget the reality here that UN inspection regimes have failed many times in the past, North Korea and Iran to wit.

    People don’t like to hear this but it’s true – if the US had a better partner in the UN, there might not have been a war in Iraq today. Furthermore, the “you broke it you bought it” attitude the UN has adopted since hasn’t done squat to help the Iraqi people since we invaded. OK, we screwed up. We’re sorry. Can the UN get off their lazy butt and get involved? Is that really too much to ask? The UN doesn’t seem to have a problem helping those in Darfur even though China supports the regime carrying out the genocide there. Why do they only passively aggress when the US is involved?

    Again, I am not laying the blame at the UN, but I think this is a fair point and a fair question.

  • Lumpy

    Dismayingly I have to agree too. If the EU were reorganized as a federal republic it would solve a lot of the problems and make it possible to bring the self-sustaining bureaucratic oligarchy to an end.

    You’re still an arrogant prat though, Chris.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Lumpy, as we all know, opinions are like arseholes, we all have one. Unfortunately yours is disfigured and ugly, rather like your name. ;-)

    You should really try and get over that inferiority complex of yours, then you might be able to perceive the difference between honesty and arrogance.

  • Lumpy

    I’m sure your arrogance is absolutely honest. How else could you be so blissfully unaware of it.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Lumpy, are you sure you’re not moonraven?

    Your remark doesn’t actually make any sense as far as I can tell. That’s not arrogance by the way, it’s just saying what I think.

    Arrogance means “overbearing pride evidenced by a superior manner toward inferiors” according to Princeton

    I hope my pride is reasonable and not overbearing and I don’t see how I could have a superior manner as I don’t see other people as my inferiors.

    You can’t please all the people all the time, however and if this is something you can’t get past, I guess I’ll just have to live with the burden.

    Now, about that chip on your shoulder…

  • Catey

    Comment 90, Lumpy says…”I’m sure your arrogance is absolutely honest. How else could you be so blissfully unaware of it”.

    WOW, that’s the best bulls eye summary of it ALL right there.

    *standing ovation*

  • REMF

    “It is the Bush government that behaved irresponsibly and caused one ofthe most disastrous international events of recent times, one that has achieved little apart from making the world a far more dangerous place.”

    Dittos, Chris!

  • JustOneMan

    Lump…its not the jewish factor per se..its Oblox…I mean Obnox refusal to admit that its already happening in his state with his religion and it wasn’t a problem…why isn’t he just as pissed at CUNY – a new york city college- one of their campuses teaches a full college curriculum in spanish – math, sciences, history etc…all students have to do is take an English proficiency exam to pass..Guess what close to 50% don’t pass…

    There are some well-educated dishwashers and maids in NYC…

    JOM

  • Catey

    What I don’t get: According to the owner/publisher of this site, Eric Olsen, in his own words (which are in the sites archives), he is a christian, and an American.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    I hope it doesn’t come off as arrogant to ask what is your point? Eric isn’t looking to impose his views on anybody, least of all the users of this site. It’s called tolerance…

  • Catey

    Why would he tolerate a comments editor who comes across to me as hating America, and hating christians? Seems to me from what I’ve read here, that would be your definition of tolerance. I’m not talking about disagreeing with things , I’m talking about hate.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Catey, if that’s what you think, all I can assume is that your imagination is stronger than your comprehension.

    To counter that, let me state that I hate neither the USA (quick headsup – that’s just a part of America) nor Christians. I do think the one god theory is a cruel deception against humanity which exploits people’s inherent feelings of spirituality though.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com Andy Marsh

    I’ve always thought you hated the US too CR, but, You’ve never let that reflect in your comment editing. I give you props for that. The only comments I’ve seen you mess with are those that are pretty much unnecessary…and a few of those were mine!

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Well, now you know you were mistaken, Andy.

    The thing with many Americans is that they interpret any criticism of the USA as hating on it. They are over-sensitive to criticism, rather like teenagers! When your nation is a little more mature, you’ll come to understand the difference and not freak out so much. Hopefully! ;-)

  • Nancy

    I have to disagree w/the last few comments: I’ve never interpreted any comment I’ve ever seen CR make as being anti-American, or hating America, or even disliking it very much. Certain aspects of it, of course; hells bells, I have aspects of it I don’t like very much m’self. Anyway, for the most part I have seen little or no shortcomings from Chris as a ed.

    Got a huge laugh out of Lumpy’s inquiry about whether Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor is MR’s new tagline. I swear that woman can’t be civil to save her life, nor can she keep it clean, apparently.

    Obnoxious, are you finding all this educational?

  • Nancy

    BTW, I haven’t seen any comments on this thread to be misogynistic, either, MR’s opinion to the contrary.

  • Catey

    “I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge .Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world”.- Albert Einstein

  • Clavos

    “Why would he tolerate a comments editor who comes across to me as hating America, and hating christians?”

    Probably because he doesn’t come across to the rest of us as hating anyone?

  • Catey

    Well, I’m not the only one to feel as I do, so whatever…

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com Andy Marsh

    Never CR…Never!

    That’s to both…growing up and understanding!!!

  • Nancy

    Catey, there’s a vast difference between imagination – and reality. They shouldn’t be confused.

  • Catey

    Well, Nancy, Albert is dead, so, WHATever..

  • Clavos

    Catey,

    I didn’t say Rosey doesn’t disagree with anyone, merely that I (and most of us, I think) don’t get a “hate” vibe from him.

    Disagreeable, oy, yes! :>)

    Hateful, no.

  • http://theugliestamerican.blogspot.com Andy Marsh

    I’d agree with Clavos…

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    It’s obvious Catey isn’t going to let go of her delicious feeling any time soon so I for one am moving on.

    Guys, If this was an English site, it would be you guys that were the disagreeable minority. Context is everything.

    Nancy, your wisdom and insight is ineffable. Thank you!

  • Catey

    OK, so …”getting an anti-tank weapon and blowing me and my house to bits” is not hostile?

    look up the definition of “gaslighting” in the wikipedia.

  • Catey

    Delicious? lmao, lol.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Catey, when you’re done looking up “gaslighting”, take a look at an explanation of “completely and utterly missing the point”, closely followed by “taking words out of context” and “dramatic effect”.
    Sheesh!

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Catey,

    I don’t have much use for Chris Rose’s views or opinions. But speaking as one who used to live in the United States and who (once) felt a certain loyalty to it, I’ll tell you that he does not hate America.

    For the most part, he is just not an American, and his views reflect that fact. His views on what constitute “free speech” definitely are not American. They are very European.

    He dislikes the “one G-d cult” as he calls it, in all of its various branches and sometimes, his way of expressing that dislike can get somewhat nasty at times – and rank hath its privileges – he is the Comments Editor.

    But for the most part, he does a reasonable job in that position – usually.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Chris,

    You should feel proud to have received that ringing endorsement, considering some of the kind things you’ve said about me…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    By the way, I happened upon an article that is about a year old where I saw some of the more positive ideas that make up Chris’s philosophy. And he was actually civil in that conversation.

    If memory serves, Chris thinks that the human species is yet young and still evolving, and that some of this evolution may make itself evident in the not too distant future.

    —————————————————–

    It would be nice to see more of that positive side, Chris. You catch more flies with honey than vinegar, you know…

    An intelligent idea might be, rather than condemning us believers, would be to post links to where you believe humanity is going, and then ask us to compare.

    At least it gives a person something to think about instead of scream at…

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, if you look at the life cycle of species, it’s simply a statistical fact that the human race is a young species.

    Our distant ancestor Homo Habilis was around for something like a million years, disappearing something like 1.5 million years ago; dinosaurs were around for 160 million years until about 65 million years ago; modern sharks have been around for 100 million years, with ancient species being found to be up to 450 million years ago.

    Our species has been around for some 200,000 years and only started making permanent settlements, as opposed to being almost entirely nomadic, approximately 10,000 years ago.

    We’ve seen notable changes to our physical size and musculature in our own lifetimes due to better nutrition and we’ve also seen huge changes in life expectancy due to improved health care.

    I believe that a combination of natural evolution and elective DNA modification is going to allow us to diversify massively from what we now consider human characteristics.

    I also believe that a combination of better nutrition, health care and both DNA and Nano technology is going to make a healthy active lifespan of well in excess of 100 years, quite probably far, far longer, the norm – if not for you and me then certainly for the next generation. Naturally I hope that these technologies will be developed as soon as possible so I can avail myself of them!

    The implications of all that are enormous. Just for starters, whither education, employment, pensions and faith in the context of all that?

    If for no other reasons than these, although there are more, I don’t consider the one god cult of that much importance, but I do look forward to embracing our brave new world to the greatest extent that I may.

    Is that enough sugar for you?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    “Is that enough sugar for you?”

    Chris,

    Keep commenting in that tone, and I might actually look forward to what you have to say…

  • Dr Dreadful

    Every species is still evolving, whether it’s young or not. It’s just a question of pace. Said sharks which have been around for hundreds of millions of years have not stopped evolving; they just haven’t done so quickly enough to change into new species, because they work well enough in their ecological niche that very few mutations turn out to be actually beneficial in any significant enough way to give a selective advantage.

    Some scientists speculate that this is going to happen to humanity too, and that we will still look pretty much the same a million years from now because we have developed the ability to adapt our surroundings to fit us, rather than the other way round.

  • moonraven

    Doc, trust me on this one: IT AIN’T GOING TO HAPPEN with our species.

    We have been too destructive, and we will simply be eliminated.

    Good riddance.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Chris, I am sorry about all the double- and multiple-posting. I wonder what it is about this particular IP address that makes it do that?

  • Nancy

    [Deleted]

    Doc, it’s happening to other people, too, around BC, so it’s not just you.

    The interesting thing is, that despite so-called “superior” nutrition (?) Americans today are actually getting shorter than the rest of the world, or even their ancestors of the past few generations. It will be interesting – but I doubt many of us will live long enough to observe it – to see if the trend continues – a sort of reverse spiralling, as it were. Back to the future? Re-development into Homo Flores, perhaps?

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, I give you sugar and you give me – nothing? C’mon man, let’s talk…

    Doc D, I suppose, technically yes, but the point I’m getting at is that we are at – or fast approaching – a time when big changes to us are going to happen more or less right before our eyes. I don’t believe that we aren’t going to change for the reasons I touched on above. DNA modification, Nano engineering and so on. I really hope I live long enough to see it go down.

    Please note the comment you made about double posting didn’t, so it can’t be anything to do with your IP address.

  • Nancy

    Well, then, Clavos, perhaps Chris should be editing the comments more strenuously for personal insults, hey? I could question why he is not? (Mine as well as hers)

  • Nancy

    Now that British scientists have the go-ahead for engaging in human/animal DNA cloning etc. I suppose the “Manimals” of Dr. Moreau are only a matter of time…? God knows what THAT is going to produce.

  • Clavos

    I think you may have misunderstood me, Nancy.

    Think about what I said; it had to do with “humanity.”

    I won’t post it again, because Big Brother is watching…

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Nancy and others:- In case you’re wondering, i have deleted all of moonraven’s comments bar one and all the comments responding to her remarks. Fruits of the poisoned tree and all that.

    I was out walking the dogs when she kicked off else I would have got to them faster.

    As to the latest new from England, this is not for the production of manimals but strictly for medical purposes. As to manimals, all life is good (well, except for wasps and mosquitos) so I don’t really have any major problems with that prospect.
    The Welsh have been trying to do that for years anyway! LOL

  • Nancy

    What ARE they trying to do it for (crossing human & animal DNA)? I mean, have any specific medical goals been mentioned? I don’t like it because in my experience, there’s always some nutcase that takes it & runs with it to the point of abuse. There is nothing you can count on from people except that at least one in every crowd will not exercise restraint.

  • Nancy

    Chris, I will hand it to you, editing this bunch must sometimes be like herding cats. I try not to fall to some others’ levels, but it’s hard when the insults are so gratuitous & nasty. I’ll keep it civil if others will….

  • Catey

    Ruvy

    You explained that very well. Ok, Chris don’t hate me and don’t want to kill me :/ I’m not sure what European free speech is though.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    Nancy, here’s a couple of brief extracts from the BBC’s report on the story:-

    “Scientists want to create hybrid embryos by merging human cells with animal eggs in a bid to extract stem cells. The embryos would then be destroyed within 14 days.

    The cells form the basic building blocks of the body and have the potential to become any tissue, making them essential for research.

    At the moment, scientists have to rely on human eggs left over from fertility treatment, but they are in short supply and are not always good quality…

    Lyle Armstrong, of Newcastle University, added: “This is excellent news. It is a positive outcome not just for our work but for the progress of British science in general and we hope that this will lead to new technologies to benefit everyone.”

    And he also said: “It does seem a little abhorrent at first analysis, but you have to understand we are using very, very little information from the cow in order to do this reprogramming idea.

    “It’s not our intention to create any bizarre cow-human hybrid, we want to use those cells to understand how to make human stem cells better.”

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    “Ruvy, I give you sugar and you give me – nothing? C’mon man, let’s talk…”

    OK Chris, let’s talk. Bear in mind here that if I mention the Bible or things in it, it is not at all to impress you with the wisdom of a “dusty old tome” or to try to bother you with the existence of G-d.

    You’ll see what I mean when I get there.

    Let’s stipulate that humanity is a young species compared to some of the other species that have hung about the earth. Everything you bring up about evolving as a species involves physical change. None of it appears to involve spiritual change.

    What is the significance of pointing this all out?

    There is a story in the Book of Genesis where Abraham travels to Gerar, a Philistine city in the Negev. The king Avimelekh, noticing Avraham’s wife, Sarah, expresses interest in her. Avraham, sliding out of a dangerous situation, states that Sarah is his sister. He’s not really lying. Sarah is his half sister – they are children of the same father, but of different mothers. That’s how Sumerian royalty arranged marriages. But he doesn’t tell Avimelekh that. So, Avimelekh has Sarah taken to his palace, where he intends to screw her. But G-d comes to Avimelekh in a dream and warns him that if he screws Sarah, he and his people will die. Terrified, he returns Sarah to Avraham, etc. etc. What runs threough tis entire story are greed, lust and deceipt.

    Moshe Dayan used to screw anything in skirts in Israel. Like King Avimelekh, 3,500 years earlier, he took women when he pleased because he was a powerful man, a guy with a general’s falafel on his epaulets. Lots of Israeli generals are like that, and lots of powerful men here are like that. the women aren’t impressed by the prick screwing them, or even with the schlong on the prick screwing them but with the power the prick represents.

    And every now and again one of them pisses off the women he has screwed – like former president Moshe Katzav. What ran through his story was greed, lust and deceipt, just like the story of Avraham and Avimelekh (the Torah is silent on how Sarah felt about all the attention she garnered).

    How have either men or women evolved in 3,500 years?

    They live longer to practice greed, lust and deceit? They can do it in better health?

    Think about that…

  • Dr Dreadful

    Please note the comment you made about double posting didn’t, so it can’t be anything to do with your IP address.

    I saw that. I’ve noticed that the longer my comment is (or the longer I take to write it), the more duplicates of it there are.

    My comment this morning on the 9/11 thread even posted three times in two different versions. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot???

  • moonraven

    It happens constantly, doc.

    The only difference is that I am ALWAYS accused of doing it deliberately, while the rest of you are pure as the fucking driven snow.

  • Catey

    Ruvy, I am anxiously awaiting your messiah article.

  • moonraven

    Article?

    I thought it was traditional to anxiously await the MESSIAH….

  • http://www.forbes.com/business/2006/10/06/muslim-integration-stops-extremism-biz-cx_1009oxford.html Cindy D

    I am sorry I am so “late to the party” regrading this topic as I would love to respond on two issues. If you should wander by OA, I would like to know whose concerns these are:

    “Add to that the concerns regarding Muslim assimilation into the American culture, their tendency to seclude themselves from the rest of Americana, and the concerns that such self-segregation is at the heart of local terrorist recruitment…”

    Where is your evidence that American Muslims have a tendency to seclude themselves?

    Your own citation says this:

    “…the U.S. Muslim population is largely young and male, it is also comparatively wealthy, well-educated and integrated into the general population. There are few signs of radicalization among U.S. first- and second-generation Muslim immigrants.”