Banned as it contradicted the Quran and Hadith

More squalid airless stupidity from Malaysia: banning Irshad Manji’s book and confiscating copies from bookstores.

The Home Ministry has banned  the controversial book by liberal Muslim  activist Irshad Manji as it could cause confusion among Muslims.

In a statement yesterday, Deputy Home Minister Datuk Abu Seman Yusop said  the book Allah, Liberty and Love and its translated version Allah, Kebebasan dan  Cinta was banned as it contradicted the Quran and Hadith.

The fact that a book “could cause confusion” is an imbecilic reason to ban it. The fact that it could cause confusion among a particular brand of theists is even more so. The fact that it contradicts the Quran and Hadith is an appalling reason to ban it. It represents obedience to arbitrary rules and demands written down many centuries ago in the guise of Roolz from Godd; not being allowed to contradict something so absurd at this late date is pathetic, tragic, horrible.

He said the decision was made following a report by the Islamic Religious  Development Department (Jakim).

“Based on the report, it says that the book promotes mixed marriages between  Muslims and non-Muslims. This could lead to pluralism.

“It also contains insulting elements towards the prophet, which were  described in such a way that could pollute the sanctity of Islam.”

The deputy minister also said that the book defended secularism by confusing  the Islamic faith.

Worse and worse and worse. Religious xenophobia and anti-pluralism; brainless worship of a long dead man; brainless worries about pollution and sanctity (cue Jonathan Haidt explaining why it’s not brainless at all, only different); anti-secularism and dogma preferred to putative “confusion” (which clearly means just dissent).

“The book also says the five fardhu prayers can be done in various movements  and languages more than five times a day. This statement may confuse the  public.”

He said the ban was made according to Section 7(1) of the Printing Presses  and Publication Act 1984 as its content could cause disturbance to the  public.

In a related development, Jawi enforcement division senior principal  assistant director Wan Jaafar Wan Ahmad said they would monitor book stores to  prevent them from distributing the books.

I’m embarrassed to be a human being.

And then there are the foul comments underneath the article…

Alternative therapy for farm animals

This is not from the Onion. Repeat, this is not from the Onion.

With an agriculture degree from the Royal Agriculture College, Cirencester, and a qualification in homeopathy, it was only natural that Christine Lees of Homeopathy at Wellie Level should turn her attention to alternative therapy for farm animals.


Alternative therapy for farm animals?


Well, because of the delusion that it’s better, I suppose, but why – oh never mind, no doubt it’s all explained if we just read the article.

“I had already done part of a homeopathy course before I went to Cirencester,” she says. “And I liked cows. So I put the two together for my dissertation: The role of homeopathy in the treatment of farm animals.”

During that time she says she talked with farmers and vets who were using homeopathy but not really knowing what they were doing. “There was very little support to go with it.”

Oh the farmers and vets were using homeopathy but they didn’t really know what they were doing! Whereas experts on the other hand do know what they’re doing.

Really? How? What is there to know? What is there to not know? What do the farmers and vets do wrong as a result of not knowing what they’re doing? What’s the difference between homeopathy done right and homeopathy done wrong?

“We agreed every course needed to be taught by a vet who was a qualified homeopath along with a second homeopath. I ran the syllabus,” she confirms.

“We felt three days was the maximum we could expect farmers to take off and the minimum we could give to the farmer given the size of this huge subject.”

It’s a huge subject, but in a pinch it can be taught in three days.

The courses are carefully planned. Day one is based around an introduction to homeopathy including key sessions on “the eight principles of homeopathy and the “big six” remedies,” plus on-farm practical animal observation.

Day two looks at treating acute cases with day three building on the first two days, and focusing on chronic illness.

Ooh, that is careful. I’m impressed. One day for acute illness, one day for chronic illness. Zip, all done!

Hitherto, Mrs Lees has run the course as a non-for-profit business. “I only run courses when I have enough people to pay for the teachers. We do some advertising and when I have profit it’s ploughed back into advertising. Our rationale is not to make a huge amount of money but to help people use homeopathy properly.”

Support for her initiative has come from various sources including the Prince of Wales who donated £5000 at the start. “That went towards the marketing,” she says.

Fabulous. The prince of Wales is giving them money to persuade more people to learn magic ways of treating animal illness. Abs’ly brilliant.

Keep the harlots occupied

Oh good god – what a clusterfuck it is when reactionaries co-opt the jargon of liberation to decorate the chains.

A new Islamic tv station is launching in the Middle East, an all woman station. Progressive, huh?

Its pilot broadcasts will start towards the end of this month, where all the staff including the broadcasters will be veiled women. No men or non-veiled women will be employed says Sheikha Safaa , the manager of the channel. [Read more…]

It’s not all about you

Department of Bad Ideas: the idea that vaccination is “a personal decision.” Vaccination is a personal decision the way texting while driving is a personal decision. That is, it’s not.

And it’s exponentially less so when the non-vaxxer is somewhat famous, and has published a book that includes her views on non-vaxxing, and talks about non-vaxxing on NPR’s Science Friday.

In certain circles, especially in the [Attachment Parenting] community, there’s huge pressure to reject or at least delay vaccines. (While a delay is better than not doing it at all, it’s still dangerous.) You then show by your personal meddling with the schedule that you care, that you’ve paid attention and done research. Hey, we haven’t all gotten degrees in epidemiology and studied the schedule, but we can all scowl at it skeptically, right? Following the recommendations of the scientists who research this stuff for a living is for sheep. They must all somehow be in the thrall of large pharmaceutical corporations. Or so the thinking goes.

It’s time for a little social pressure of our own. It’s time for us to tell Mayim to take this one back. Stop being responsible for the measles or pertussis revivals. Once you blog about it and talk about it on interviews, like the one you did recently for Science Friday, you’re no longer just influencing your friends. It’s no longer a private, personal decision. You’re influencing everyone within earshot. Stop being a disease vector. Stop pretending like the only person affected by your decisions is you. Start acting like the role model you aspire to be.

But Mayim Bialik – Amy Farrah Fowler on The Big Bang Theory, which is why I know who she is – is firm that it is indeed personal. I find that kind of imperturbable selfishness deeply irritating.

Suck out that moisture

How about the Zimbabwean senator from the Movement for Democratic Change who thinks the way to prevent AIDS is to vacuum all the disgusting goo out of women?

He also thinks they should stop taking showers so that they’ll be too smelly to fuck, and shave their heads so that they’ll be too bald ditto, but the disgusting goo idea is more sciency than that.

He also gave an interview in which he stated that “Women have got more moisture in their organs as compared to men so there is need to research on how to deal with that moisture because it is conducive for bacteria breeding. There should be a way to suck out that moisture.”

Yes indeedy.  There should be a way to suck it out, and a way to make it mandatory for women to have it sucked out. Sounds kind of rapey, but think  of the upside – for the first time in human history, women who aren’t all slimy and disgusting. Booyah.

Pro-life arson

Good old “we are pro-life so we try to kill women to show how pro-life we are.”

Investigators are still trying to determine what caused a fire at an obstetrics and gynecology clinic — the second suspicious fire at a Georgia reproductive clinic this week. No one was injured in the Wednesday morning fire that started on the third floor of the Cobb County clinic, which anti-abortion advocates regularly protest, according to local news reports. Employees told a local TV station they saw “suspicious activity” before the fire:

Clinic workers believe the fire started on the third floor. They said two unknown men went upstairs and left shortly afterward, minutes before the fire was discovered.

“We have patients here. They’re under anesthesia. This could have been life-threatening,” employee Angela Buckner told Channel 2’s Ross Cavitt.

That’s unpossible, because pro-life people are pro-life.


From Sile Lane, about Rothamsted this Sunday

A message from Sile Lane (Sense About Science):

Many of you have asked how you can personally show your support for the GM wheat scientists at Rothamsted Research who face the destruction of their trial site by Take the Flour Back this Sunday. The team of scientists will be at Rothamsted Park, Harpenden AL5 2EF to answer questions from 11.30 on the day, where the protesters are apparently planning to gather. This is where you can show your support, but please do NOT attempt to go to join the anti-GM activists in moving to the trial site itself, for obvious reasons.

It is regrettable that the Green Party’s Jenny Jones has confirmed that she will be there to support direct action against publicly-funded research, particularly given that the wheat trial is expressly aimed at reducing the use of broad-spectrum insecticides which can damage farmland biodiversity.

Meanwhile, hundreds of you responded to the call to email Take the Flour Back with your request that they should call the protest off. To date no response has been received, so we can only assume that the attempt at a “mass decontamination” that the group has proposed will go ahead as planned.

Best wishes,

Síle Lane


Avicenna says

UK blogger Avicenna writes about the murder of Shafilea Iftikhar Ahmed.

It is alleged that on September the 11th, 2003. Shafilea was picked up from her part time call centre job, driven home where an argument broke out.

At some point in this scenario, her mother pushed her onto the sofa and ordered her husband to “Finish it Now”. Farzana and Iftikhar Ahmed were then alleged to have held her down, forced a plastic bag into her mouth and covered her airways till she suffocated. Shafilea fought to live, struggling against this assault. Her father had his weight over her chest. Alesha described her final moments as a struggle to breathe with her eyes bulging in strain for a single breath of air and wetting herself as the life was choked from her. After she died her father struck her a single hard blow to the chest before getting up. [Read more…]

How to make baseless accusations become true via repetition

And another item. “Gender traitor.” People have been milking that pair of words for going on a year now. It’s a meme, a thing, a Masonic handshake, which rests on the idea that it’s a favorite pejorative used by the non-ERV faction of The Great Rift. ERVite “Commander Tuvok” for instance on Greta’s thread:

People all over FTB used “gender traitor” for that very same definition. [That is: “Sister-punisher: A woman who turns on other women to gain favor of sexist men.”]

Did they? That sounded wrong to me, but I didn’t look it up. Jen looked it up.

People all over FTB used “gender traitor” for that very same definition.

I just did some research. You see, it was really difficult, but that’s why I’m getting my PhD. I had to scroll to the top of the FtB main page, type in “gender traitor” to the search box, and then count the number of posts that came up. Two! Two whole posts!

But wait. I clicked the posts, and do you know the context “gender traitor” was brought up in? Quoting people from the slimepit! Shocking how not a single blogger has ever actually described someone using the term gender traitor. I must have missed something.

Two whole posts – for “all over FTB.” Interesting.

I wonder if the meme will be retired now. I won’t be holding my breath.