Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wed Jun 25th Todays News

It was long ago, but D'Artagnan died on this day, 1673. His life was dramatised and romanticised by Dumas in the Three Musketeers, Twenty years after, Vicomte De Braggelonne, Madame Louise De La Valliere and The Man in the Iron Mask. Still, he lived a fascinating life, addicted to adrenaline. As governor he was despised, and did not enjoy the life, and so died on campaign age 62. There have been significant deaths on this day. In 2009, Farrah Fawcett spoiled the glorious death of Michael Jackson. Farrah died too young, Michael too old. One man said to be responsible was not given the medal he deserved, but jailed for a time, protesting his love for Michael. Three brothers and a nephew died on this day in 1876, among many others. They were high ranking officers, two generals and a colonel. During the civil war, as an ambitious captain, he overheard a commanding officer wonder how deep a river crossing was. George rode out to the middle of the river on his horse, water lapping the horse's legs, and called out "It is this deep, sir." But on this day in 1876, General George Custer was said to have uttered the last words "Hurrah boys, we've got them! We'll finish them up and then go home to our station." But Little Bighorn was where he fell. 

Significant births include Louis Mountbatten (1900) and George Orwell (1903), Carly Simon (1945), Tim Finn (1952), Craig Johnston (1960) and George Michael (1963). Louis was great. Louis was a great grandson of Queen Victoria. He was foundational to the creation of electrical engineers IEE and showed great daring in executing his command in war. Murdered by the IRA in an act of terror when he was an old man. By way of contrast, Orwell was born upper class and lead a charmed life, being taught French by Aldous Huxley at Eton. An upper class twit whose words have been embraced enthusiastically by the left. The tragedy of George's life was that he wasn't born as rich as his dad had been. George's writing can be measured by his brittle inability to appreciate the greatness of Kipling. 

The Mann act was passed in 1910, on this day. It made it illegal to take a woman across state borders in the US for immoral purposes. In 1976, the Missouri Governor rescinded the 150 year old Mormon Extermination order. Someone had not liked door knockers. In 1906, a millionaire shot dead an architect. Not for salacious building reasons, the guy had had an affair with the millionaire's wife. There is no evidence he was Mormon. The crowning puzzle of the day had two wealthy hucksters standing side by side. Clive Palmer and Al Gore. 
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For twenty two years I have been responsibly addressing an issue, and I cannot carry on. I am petitioning the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott to remedy my distress. I leave it up to him if he chooses to address the issue. Regardless of your opinion of conservative government, the issue is pressing. Please sign my petition at https://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/tony-abbott-remedy-the-persecution-of-dd-ball
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Happy birthday and many happy returns Natalie Nicole Ngo. Born on a day in which in 1900, A Daoist monk discovered the Dunhuang manuscripts, a cache of documents from the 5th to 11th centuries, in the Mogao Caves of Dunhuang, China. In 1913, More than 50,000 Union and Confederate veterans gathered at the Gettysburg Battlefield near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the largest combined reunion of American Civil War veterans ever held. In 1944, World War II: United States Navy and Royal Navy ships bombarded Cherbourg, France, to support U.S. Army units engaged in the Battle of Cherbourg. In 1978, The rainbow flag representing gay pride first flew in the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade. And, in 2009, Swedish authorities removed eight-year-old Domenic Johansson from the custody of his parents on the grounds that he was not being properly educated. What a Day! Raise the flag in pride. Expect many to attend. That birth certificate is a precious document. But then a well educated person such as yourself (they are your parents, right?) would know that.
Matches
Hatches
Despatches
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How jihad became the latest fashion in Sydney

Miranda Devine – Tuesday, June 24, 2014 (10:08pm)

image
IF anything gives Islam a bad name in Australia, it’s extremist outfits like Hizb ut-Tahrir, which wants to use the upcoming Festival of Dangerous Ideas to justify honour killings.
Uthman Badar, the group’s spokesman, was invited to the prestigious Sydney Opera House event in August to deliver a speech titled: “Honour killings are morally justified.”
Seriously. Murdering women is not a dangerous idea – it’s a crime.
After pressure from the NSW government, the Opera House last night cancelled the speech, claiming “a line has been crossed”. But why did it and Festival partner, the St James Ethics Centre, offer a platform to Islamist extremists at all?
There simply is no justification for the murder of women by relatives who feel she has dishonoured the family, by, say, being raped.
Some ideas in the world really are dangerous, and you only have to look at the horrors unfolding in Syria and Iraq to know that radical Islam is as bad as they come.
But to Festival organizers, it was all a game. By inviting Hizb Ut Tahrir to join the rest of the luvvies on stage they made Islamist extremism fashionable.
We have trouble enough on that score.
Take jihad, which has become so cool in Australia that we are the leading supplier, per capita, of Western fighters in Syria and now Iraq.
You can hear Australian accents on recruitment videos posted online by the brutal ISIS terrorist group, which has recently moved from the war in Syria to Iraq where it now controls large parts of the country.
“Muslim brothers in Australia. I don’t see myself as better than you…this is the message for youse.”
Australian jihadists are not just making propaganda videos, but taking leading roles.
Convicted terrorist Khaled Sharrouf, formerly of Wiley Park, for instance, is pictured in graphic images on social media, reportedly holding a pistol and surrounded by the corpses of Iraqi civilians who have been executed.
The 150 Australian jihadists who have joined ISIS and other terrorist groups are a disproportionate number, compared to an estimated 50 from the US, and 400 from the UK, out of 1000 from all Europe.

And since Sydney is where the majority of Australia’s Muslims live, this is particularly our problem.
The most senior police in NSW, including counter-terrorism officers, past and present, say Sydney’s Muslim leaders are doing their best to stop the recruitment of young people.
One reason ISIS has been successful here is that it is a Sunni group, one of the two main branches of Islam. Sydney has the largest population of Lebanese Sunnis outside of Lebanon, a product of immigration in the 1970s and 1980s during that country’s civil war.
But it is the Australian-born children and grandchildren of those migrants, who don’t speak Arabic and have never read the Koran, who have been recruited to jihad across the world.
The families whose sons – and sometimes daughters – have left to fight in Syria and Iraq are “devastated”.
“We are fuming and very angry about ISIS,” Belmore GP Dr Jamal Rifi said yesterday. “Our young men have been brainwashed, not by the people of the cloth but by evil people. They’ve taken them where they should not go. They’ve taken them to their death.”
Dr Rifi knows three Sydney families whose sons have joined ISIS in Syria and two families whose daughters have gone.
One 17-year-old told his mother two weeks ago he was going to Gosford to get a job, and then he turned up on Facebook in Syria.
“We informed the AFP. And the local authorities… The family is devastated.”
About five weeks ago, Dr Rifi said Muslim community leaders became aware of extremists recruiting young people for jihad in Bankstown.
“This was a small group operating behind closed doors making a network of like-minded, impressionable people. Somebody pretending to be a religious leader was brainwashing them.
“We know that group went to Turkey on different pretences and [then] went from Turkey to Syria.”
The brainwashing is real, says one former counter terrorism officer, who worked on the Operation Pendennis terrorist plot investigation, which foiled attacks in Sydney and Melbourne in 2005, including a plan to blow up the MCG.
Extremists “groom” young men identified though youth groups, or other activities, as good prospects for jihad.
“It’s no different to a way a paedophile will groom a child. They will work on them over years and brainwash them.
“I’ve seen it first hand. [The recruits] are lost souls anyway; they’re not hard to manipulate and bring on board.”
The government has vowed to cancel the passports of homegrown jihadists. But, without proof of terrorist activity, it will be tricky to stop Australian citizens coming home.
Just look at the public furore supporting David Hicks, a homegrown jihadist of an earlier generation.
In the end, we have to rely on the skill of our police, and their good relations with the majority of moderate Muslims, who have as much at stake as anyone in stopping the radicalisation of their youth.
But what hope is there when Sydney’s fashionable left-wing establishment fetes extremism, as if it is just another dinner party conversation starter. 
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The curious case of O’Farrell’s wine

Miranda Devine – Tuesday, June 24, 2014 (9:06pm)

BARRY O’Farrell’s sudden resignation over a bottle of Grange has never been satisfactorily explained.

Icon Arrow Continue reading 'The curious case of O’Farrell’s wine'
I don't know O'Farrell's thinking either, but a more salient point is that the wine bottle is a moot point, unworthy of his attention, until the ICAC made a corruption allegation out of it. The ICAC did not have to handle it the way they had. The handling of the issue by the ICAC is the most telling pointer to what went down. They have no follow up. It was a smear. The danger of a politically partisan ICAC requires special handling. It is possible that elements of the ICAC hope to derail investigations into the ALP by goading the Liberals into dismantling the ICAC to limit damage. This suggests stoic nobleness on the part of O'Farrell and extreme naivety on the part of Keneally.  - ed
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CLIVE AND AL

Tim Blair – Wednesday, June 25, 2014 (4:14pm)

It’s Blair’s Law writ extra-large: 
Former US vice-president Al Gore will join Clive Palmer in Parliament House on Wednesday afternoon.
Fairfax Media understands Mr Gore and Mr Palmer will discuss environment and climate policy in a joint press conference in the Great Hall.
Mr Palmer’s spokesman Andrew Crook is remaining tight-lipped about details of the event, but he said it was “not wrong” that Mr Gore is expected in the building in the next few hours. 
Two massive millionaires – the perfect image of modern environmentalism.
UPDATE. Behold, once again, the Gore Effect
ACT Policing has advised of several road closures due to snow around Canberra. 
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UNDER THE BADAR

Tim Blair – Wednesday, June 25, 2014 (5:11am)

Islamic extremist Uthman Badar’s planned Sydney speech – “Honour killings are morally justified” – has beencancelled
The Opera House on Tuesday canned a lecture entitled “Honour killings are morally justified”, which was to have been given by writer Uthman Badar, only hours after it was announced.
The talk was planned as part of the annual Festival of Dangerous Ideas, which takes place in August.
Its inclusion in the line-up sparked a barrage of criticism on social media and condemnation from the NSW government, with Minister for Women Pru Goward branding it “abhorrent”. 
Good call. 
Late on Tuesday, the Opera House announced on its Facebook page that the lecture would not go ahead.
“The Festival of Dangerous Ideas is intended to be a provocation to thought and discussion, rather than simply a provocation,” the statement said.
“It is always a matter of balance and judgement, and in this case a line has been crossed ... It is clear from the public reaction that the title has given the wrong impression of what Mr Badar intended to discuss.” 
That would be the title: “Honour killings are morally justified.” How on earth did people get the wrong idea? 
“Neither Mr Badar, (festival organisers) the St James Ethics Centre, nor Sydney Opera House in any way advocates honour killings or condones any form of violence against women.” 
Except that they did actually plan a speech with the title “Honour killings are morally justified.” Apart from that, no condoning of any violence towards women at all. 
Mr Badar took to Twitter to make a statement of his own.
“Hysteria wins out. Opera house cancels my session at #FODI. Welcome to the free world, where freedom of expression is a cherished value,” he wrote. 
So now we’re being lectured on freedom of expression by a Hizb ut-Tahrir propagandist. 
Mr Badar had indicated he did not intend to defend honour killings.
His tweeted response to one critic who wrote, “Any one who condones or justifies the murder of defenceless women is a gutless creep”, was: “I’m with you on that. Calm down.” 
Here’s an idea, my Hizbie friend: now that your schedule is clear, you’ve got time to visit ISIS and tell them exactly the same thing. Be sure to mention your fondness for freedom of expression. Good luck. 
“Overwhelmingly, those who condemn honour killings are based in the liberal democracies of the West,” a blurb for Mr Badar’s event had read.
“The accuser and moral judge is the secular (white) westerner and the accused is the oriental other; the powerful condemn the powerless.” 
Those two sentences are literally sickening. We’re talking here about women being stoned or hacked or slashed to death, and this is a plea of powerlessness on behalf of their murderers. Everybody associated with Badar’s planned speech stands absolutely condemned.
UPDATE. Today’s Daily Telegraph editorial
The organisers of this utter disgrace may congratulate themselves on winning media attention. Perhaps that was the aim all along.
But media attention will eventually fade, and those organisers will have to live with the fact that they intended to elevate the slaughter of women and girls to the very centre of Sydney’s cultural life. 
One of those organisers is professional ethicist Simon Longstaff
Joint founder and co-curator of the festival Simon Longstaff said the idea is one he had consistently nominated for six years, because the point of the event is to push boundaries “to the point where you become extremely uncomfortable”. 
If making people “extremely uncomfortable” is the aim, Simon, why not just pelt rocks at the Opera House audience? It’d be less expensive than presenting speakers, and would also provide an authentic “honour killing” experience for your customers. Here’s Simon on Twitter
The session to explore ‘honour killing’ has been cancelled. Alas, people read the session title - and no further. Just too dangerous. 
It was about killing women, you idiot. You really want to “explore” that idea? Where do you go after working out that killing innocent women is wrong?
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SHORT MEMORY

Tim Blair – Wednesday, June 25, 2014 (4:11am)

Former Gillard government advisor John McTernan
The jailing of al-Jazeera journalists shows how precious free speech is. Government regulation should be resisted. 
Wow. Already forgotten this, John?
UPDATE. Readers should be aware that McTernan has returned to the UK.
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OLD AND SACRED

Tim Blair – Wednesday, June 25, 2014 (4:10am)

Nominations remain open for your ancient domestic artefacts.
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CALL IT A DRAW

Tim Blair – Wednesday, June 25, 2014 (3:12am)

The Guardian‘s reaction to two verdicts in Britain’s phone-hacking trial: 
“There was wild cheering in newsroom at news that jury had verdict. Now gone deathly silent.” 
They’re upset because primary hate-figure Rebekah Brooks has been found not guilty
David Cameron’s former communications chief Andy Coulson has been found guilty of conspiring to hack phones, but his co-accused, the former editor of News of the World and News International executive Rebekah Brooks, has walked free at the Old Bailey …
Following an arduous eight-month trial and three-year investigation, Brooks, 46, clearly looking faint and needing to be helped by a court official, was found not guilty of the four charges she was facing.
She was exonerated of conspiracy to hack phones, conspiracy to corrupt public officials and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. 
Coulson, still to be sentenced, can expect some prison time.
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ABC presenter on the justification for honour killings

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (7:29pm)

Islamism, Media, The new morality

From 3:49, the ABC’s James Carleton explains the benefits of knowing the justification for honour killings. He opposes honour killings, of course, but now far better understands why they may seem necessary.
Incredibly, he then adds the difference between him giving this rationalisation and Uthman Badar is that he himself is non-Muslim, and the opposition to Badar must therefore be based on Islamophobia.
This overlooks a few points. For instance, Badar hasn’t actually explained what his argument is, and Carleton simply imagines it’s one he can accept. Second, Badar’s speech was actually titled “Honor killings are morally justified” - not a question but a statement. The blurb, also approved by Badar, said the speech would be an attack on whites who criticised honor killing. This further suggests Carleton is in full apologetics mode. Lastly, Badar’s record of excusing terrorists and the oppression of women do not entitle him to a privileged platform at such a Festival.
Oh, and I find Carleton’s rationalisation pretty creepy, actually.
Carleton is the presenter who had to apologise the other day for sliming Cardinal George Pell. Far less willingness to be understanding there.
Why is the ABC filled wall-to-wall with the Left?
(Thanks to reader Rex.) 
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ABC asks foul question to incite its Abbott haters

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (5:10pm)

Push-polling by the ABC:

image
There is not the slightest evidence to suggest the Government has not done enough. The Greste family does not say so, Labor does not say so, lawyers do not say so, no reputable journalist says so. The intensive effort mounted is so obvious that the question is simply a non-issue - apart from at the ABC, which chooses to ask this question rather than a 1000 others it could legitimately ask about the case.
This is just push polling to suggest a problem that does not exist, and incite the hatred the ABC can count on from its on-line audience.
The ABC is out of control.  
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Al Gore advises Clive Palmer. We’re in strife

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (4:49pm)

A discredited billionaire asks a discredited warming alarmist for advice. Australia is in deep trouble, and the carbon tax may not be lifted from our backs:
Clive Palmer will announce his party’s position on repealing the carbon tax bill this afternoon, flanked by climate change campaigner and former US vice-president Al Gore.
The Fairfax MP is due to reveal how the Palmer United Party Senators will vote on the crucial bill in Parliament’s Great Hall at 5.30pm AEST…
A statement from Mr Palmer’s office says ...: “Mr Palmer said it is apparent that climate change is a global issue and in the meeting he will discuss this with Vice President Gore”.
Yesterday, Mr Palmer told the ABC the announcement would “offer hope to mankind” and “a solution for Australia and the world”.
I don’t know which of the two men is shamed most by this association.
From Gore’s list of dud predictions:
In December 2008, Al Gore, for instance, said: ”The entire north polar ice cap will be gone in 5 years...”
In fact, world sea ice is above average levels. And Arctic sea ice is above 2008 levels, according to Norsex data.
Climate change has already cost us – in more costly extreme weather disasters, in failed crops...
In fact, the world has seen increasing crops and fewer cyclones, if anything, and little sign of extra droughts and floods, according to the IPCC.
UPDATE
Tim Blair:
Behold, once again, the Gore Effect: 
ACT Policing has advised of several road closures due to snow around Canberra.
UPDATE
Reports that Palmer wants an emissions trading scheme. Which is a carbon tax in another form.
What a sell out. But this should cement Palmer’s relationship with the ABC and the Canberra press gallery.
The Greens are now also suggesting they could back an emissions trading scheme, having already helped destroy the prime ministerships of Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard by opposing just that.
So why is Palmer now demanding an emissions trading scheme when just two months ago he insisted there was no problem to fix:
Lateline presenter Tony Jones: Clive Palmer, can I ask you a very basic question? Do you believe the consensus scientific view set out in the latest IPCC report that climate change impacts due to global warming will have especially serious impacts on Australia?

Clive Palmer:
No, I don’t believe that’s so. There’s been global warming for a long time. I mean, all of Ireland was covered by ice at one time. There were no human inhabitants in Ireland. That’s how the world has been going over millions and billions of years and Ross Garnaut knows that’s true, so I think that’s part of the natural cycle…

It’s not logical. If we say 97 per cent comes from nature and we don’t even bother examining how we can reduce carbon in nature, just in industry, it’s not a proper balance… I mean, if we say we want to reduce it by 1 per cent, which I think is the target globally, to do that, why can’t we take some from nature, some from industry, or maybe all from nature?
UPDATE
Palmer’s plan isn’t good, but could be worse.
The very bad news is that Palmer (the coal miner) will vote to keep the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, which lends our money for dodgy green schemes, and the Renewable Energy Target, which forces us to waste money on green power and drives up power bills.
But Palmer’s trading scheme has a useful get-out, although it sets up a dangerous machinery - especially if Labor is returned.
He says he will move an amendment to a bill to abolish the Climate Change Authority that a zero-rated emissions trading scheme be set up, to be operative only when China, the US, the European Union, Japan and Korea have the same. The price, he suggests, will be set at the world price.
At this stage, though, there is no sign the US, Korea and Japan will have any such scheme, and the Chinese plan is for a scheme where permits are likewise free.
Clever Clive. With luck, this scheme will never happen. But Palmer says the carbon tax will go. And that is the main game.
UPDATE
Then Gore speaks. He is typically misleading.
He claims Obama has just announced a 30 per cent cut in emissions. In fact, Obama announced a 30 per cent cut in the 2005 levels of emission by 2030 - but only from power stations, which make up 40 per cent of all human emissions. This means Obama’s plans an actual cut to emissions today of just 6 per cent. Moreover, this need not be done as Gore claims, by an emissions trading scheme.
Gore also claims the new Indian Prime Minister has pledged to put electricity in every home - and this will “mainly” come from solar power. Modi made no such promise, which is unachievable. In fact, Modi made only a vague nod to solar power:
India Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to boost the country’s solar industry in a bid to drive the economy and cut the number of blackouts. Today’s Presidential Address outlining the new government’s plans emphasised… “It will expand the national solar mission and connect households and industries with gas-grids."…
We need a saffron revolution that focuses on renewable energy sources such as solar energy, to meet India’s growing energy demand,” he said. 
Gore is a fraud.
UPDATE
And the deception didn’t stop there. Palmer said both men had an “urgent dinner” to attend and so couldn’t take questions. It was actually 5.45pm. And Gore’s aversion to taking questions from journalists not pre-screened is notorious.
A question Gore would have or should faced is this: How much did Palmer pay you or your interests to get you to attend? It must have cost something, because why would Gore otherwise attend a press conference called by a politician announcing he’s help scrap the carbon tax and replace it with an emissions trading scheme that is unlikely to ever to see light of day?
Gore the fraud was just there as cover. 
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The desperation of Suarez the biter

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (10:51am)

Uruguay’s Luis Suarez has for the third time bitten a player on the pitch - this time at the World Cup.
This profile helps to explain the man.
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Coalition slowly recovers

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (9:45am)

This week’s Essential Media poll confirms the Abbott Government is slowly crawling out of the deep hole it dug with its Budget. It’s still behind - 48 to 52 - but a week ago it was lagging 46 to 54.
Again the question is: but what’s Labor’s alternative?
(Thanks to reader Mike of NQ.) 
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Pay-per-view for ABC?

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (8:55am)

Why not? If it’s that good, surely people will pay for it. And by “people” I mean those actually using the service:
THE ABC and SBS could for the first time charge viewers to watch content under a proposal put forward by the government-commissioned review of the public broadcasters. 

An eight-page executive summary of the review, which identifies tens of millions of dollars’ worth of potential savings and new revenue streams, includes the ­option of creating a shared ABC and SBS back-office entity with a private sector partner to deliver extensive administration savings. The review says the SBS could also be allowed to increase the number of minutes of advertising it could run.

One of the most controversial proposals in the summary, obtained by The Australian, is the creation of a “pay-per-view service” once programs have run for free on television and online “catch-up” services for a certain period.
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Labor blew the Budget, wrecks the recovery

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (8:19am)

The Greens and Labor, even in opposition, are driving us further into debt:
LABOR and the Greens have wiped another $3.3 billion from Tony Abbott’s budget savings…
In a reversal on the fuel tax, the Greens vowed to oppose the ­government plan to restore ­indexation of the excise despite indicating support for the move six weeks ago…
Labor added a new front to its attack on the budget by vowing to block the government attempt to scrap an $876 annual supplement for about 290,000 seniors who do not qualify for the age pension.
The Labor move blocks ­another $1.1bn in savings while the Greens decision on fuel excise will veto $2.2bn in new revenue over four years…
Dooming most of the government’s welfare reforms, the Labor caucus formally voted yesterday to reject $11.4bn in social security changes while supporting another $2.8bn in measures in two bills currently before the parliament…
Labor is now rejecting budget savings worth about $25bn over four years, almost every spending cut or tax increase that needs to be legislated other than the deficit levy on earnings over $180,000, which passed the parliament last week.
The government estimated last night that Labor now opposed $39.3bn in overall savings measures, including those in the budget on top of others that have been before the parliament since late last year.
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Honor killing speech cancelled. Critics blamed

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (7:32am)

Culture wars, Islamism

More oppression of poor Muslims:

The Opera House on Tuesday canned a lecture entitled ‘Honour killings are morally justified’, which was to have been given by writer Uthman Badar [of Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir], only hours after it was announced.
The talk was planned as part of the annual Festival of Dangerous Ideas, which takes place in August....
Late on Tuesday, the Opera House announced ... ‘The Festival of Dangerous Ideas is intended to be a provocation to thought and discussion, rather than simply a provocation… It is always a matter of balance and judgement, and in this case a line has been crossed ... It is clear from the public reaction that the title has given the wrong impression of what Mr Badar intended to discuss.
‘Neither Mr Badar, (festival organisers) the St James Ethics Centre, nor Sydney Opera House in any way advocates honour killings or condones any form of violence against women.’
Of course not! What could have given people that impression, other than the title of the lecture, the blurb, and the record of the speaker in demanding shariah law and excusing terrorist groups?
The title:
image
The blurb:

For most of recorded history parents have reluctantly sacrificed their children—sending them to kill or be killed for the honour of their nation, their flag, their king, their religion. But what about killing for the honour of one’s family? Overwhelmingly, those who condemn ‘honour killings’ are based in the liberal democracies of the West. The accuser and moral judge is the secular (white) westerner and the accused is the oriental other; the powerful condemn the powerless. By taking a particular cultural view of honour, some killings are condemned whilst others are celebrated. In turn, the act becomes a symbol of everything that is allegedly wrong with the other culture.
Pardon me, but how is it possible to construe this talk as anything but apologetics for honor killing and an attack on its white critics?
The excuses for scheduling this talk seem disingenuous, to put it mildly. And why is this extremist group, now attacking critics of the ISIS terrorist group that’s slaughtering civilians, even given any stage to advance its agenda?
But lucky Uthman! He still has his beloved narrative of Western oppression of good Muslims:
Mr Badar took to Twitter to make a statement of his own.
‘Hysteria wins out. Opera house cancels my session at #FODI. Welcome to the free world, where freedom of expression is a cherished value,’ he wrote…
Mr Badar had indicated he did not intend to defend honour killings.
His tweeted response to one critic who wrote, ‘Any one who condones or justifies the murder of defenceless women is a gutless creep’, was: ‘I’m with you on that. Calm down.’
UPDATE
The Daily Telegraph puts it well:
The organisers of this utter disgrace may congratulate themselves on winning media attention. Perhaps that was the aim all along.
But media attention will eventually fade, and those organisers will have to live with the fact that they intended to elevate the slaughter of women and girls to the very centre of Sydney’s cultural life.
UPDATE
Meanwhile, a warning about the 150 Australians now thought to be fighting for jihadists in Syria and Iraq:
A decade ago, around 60 Australians went to Afghanistan to join jihadist operations. Others travelled to Somalia in 2004. Of the 25 Australians who returned home, 19 were, to different degrees, found to be involved in domestic terrorist activities aimed at Australians.
In each of the domestic terrorist plots foiled by Australian authorities — from the al-Qa’ida planned attacks during the 2000 Sydney Olympics, the foiled 2003 plot by Lashkar-e-Toiba, to home-grown attacks planned in Melbourne and Sydney uncovered in Operation Pendennis in 2005, to the 2009 terrorist plot to attack Sydney’s Holsworthy army base — it involved men who had trained in terrorist training camps overseas. Terrorism, by its nature, requires only a few people to cause mass death.
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Greste betrayed by al Jazeera’s extremists

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (12:38am)

I said yesterday Peter Greste was the innocent victim - collateral damage - of a battle between Egypt’s new regime and Qatar, which support’s the regime’s Muslim Brotherhood enemy.
Qatar’s al Jazeera network has housed leaders of the extremist Muslim Brotherhood who have fled Iraq and given them a platform.
Many journalists who know only al Jazeera’s English service, for which Greste worked, would think we are talking about a network that’s just the BBC of the Middle East.
But there is another al Jazeera, described two years ago by the Jerusalem Post’s Oren Kessler, which Egypt could be forgiven for considering a threat - even if its jailing of Geste is manifestly unjust:

Lost in the exuberance is the fact that a vast gulf still separates the channel’s English iteration from the original Arabic…
If there was any doubt about Al Jazeera’s sympathies and lack of neutrality, it was effectively laid to rest with the channel’s coverage of the release of Samir Kuntar. Kuntar had savagely murdered two Israelis in 1979, including a 4-year old girl, and had been jailed in Israel since then. On his 2008 release in an Israel-Hezbollah deal, Al Jazeera Arabic threw him a party: “Brother Samir, we wish to celebrate your birthday with you,” crowed the station’s Beirut bureau chief, hailing Kuntar as a “pan-Arab hero.”

In the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Fouad Ajami traveled to Qatar to write a profile on Al Jazeera Arabic (AJA) for The New York Times Magazine…
Virtually all of the channel’s journalists, he found, were either leftist, pan-Arab nationalists, or Islamists… “Day in and day out, Al Jazeera deliberately fans the flames of Muslim outrage.” ...
In the wake of those attacks, Ajami discovered, bin Laden was Al Jazeera’s unchallenged star: “The channel’s graphics assign him a lead role… A huge, glamorous poster of bin Laden’s silhouette hangs in the background of the main studio set.”
In Afghanistan, Al Jazeera’s narrative was roughly analogous to the Taliban’s: ill-equipped, heroic Muslims overcoming the foreign invader through sheer courage and faith… Coverage in Iraq has been similar. Words like “terror” and “insurgency” are rarely mentioned with a straight face, usually replaced with “resistance” or “struggle.” Suicide bombings against U.S. troops are “commando attacks” or sometimes even “paradise operations” while “War in Iraq” is replaced by “War on Iraq.” ...
In his 2004 state of the union address, President George W. Bush singled out Al Jazeera as a source of “hateful propaganda” in the Arab world, and then-defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld blasted its war coverage as “propaganda,” “inexcusably biased,” and “vicious."…
Judea Pearl is a celebrated University of California computer scientist and cofounder of the Daniel Pearl Dialogue for Muslim-Jewish Understanding, created to honor his son, the Wall Street Journal reporter kidnapped and beheaded in 2002 by al-Qaeda terrorists in Pakistan. Since 2007, Pearl has been a lonely voice on the left warning against Al Jazeera’s legitimization. “Their unconditional support of Hamas’s terror in Gaza, the Hezbollah takeover in Lebanon, and the Syrian and Iranian regimes betrays any illusion that democracy and human rights are on Al Jazeera’s agenda"—he wrote this year—"weakening the West is their first priority."…

Al Jazeera’s detractors have long dismissed the network as a vehicle for Doha’s foreign policy, one driven by Sunni sectarianism and an overriding antagonism toward Iran.  Voices critical of Qatar’s government—the “worst in the region” in tracking terrorist financing, according to U.S. diplomatic cables published by WikiLeaks - are nonexistent in English or Arabic.  In 2011, both channels provided only scant coverage of the uprising in neighboring Bahrain—where a downtrodden Shiite majority demanded greater rights in the Sunni-led kingdom - and were slow to cede airtime to the rebellion in Syria - a leader of the “resistance bloc” against the United States and Israel even if it is allied with the Shiite hegemon in Tehran.
Over the past decade, however, Al Jazeera’s sectarian impulse has been moving ever closer to garden-variety Sunni Islamism...In the words of Alberto Fernandez, then-director for press and public diplomacy in the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, “We see the unconditional support of Islamic movements, no matter where they are: Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan. … How things are covered, the prominence of things, what words are used—sometimes you do see that very clear Islamist subtext.”
In 2002, Al Jazeera Arabic promoted Wadah Khanfar—a reporter from the West Bank town of Jenin widely believed to have close Muslim Brotherhood ties - from Iraq bureau chief to managing director. Three years later Khanfar was promoted to director general of the overall Al Jazeera network, overseeing both language channels… Gillespie spoke with nine active and former employees who described Khanfar as an Islamist…
“From the first day of the Wadah Khanfar era, there was a dramatic change, especially because of him selecting assistants who are hard-line Islamists,” added AJA’s former Washington bureau chief Hafez al-Mirazi, who resigned a year after Khanfar’s arrival to protest the station’s “Islamist drift."… Judea Pearl put the channel’s agenda more plainly: “I have no doubt that, today, Al Jazeera is the most powerful voice of the Muslim Brotherhood."…
Yusuf al-Qaradawi, host of Al Jazeera’s most popular program, Shari’a and Life, regularly froths about the insidious character of Shiites, Americans, and especially Jews. “Oh Allah, take this oppressive, Jewish, Zionist band of people. Oh Allah, do not spare a single one of them. Oh Allah, count their numbers, and kill them, down to the very last one,” he said on air in 2009. 
Peter Greste is now a hostage in Egypt’s battle with the Qatar regime which employs him. Australia’s pleadings are of small account in this wider struggle.
(Thanks to reader Geoff.) 
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Mariam Yahya Ibrahim detained again

Andrew Bolt June 25 2014 (12:05am)

But to worry about Islam is to be a bigot:
Mariam Yahya Ibrahim, the Christian woman sentenced to death and later freed after an international outcry, was briefly re-arrested while trying to leave the country for the US before being released again.

Eman Abdul-Rahim, a lawyer representing Ms Ibrahim, said she had been held along with her two children and husband at the international airport in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital. The BBC reported that Ms Ibrahim, whose death sentence in May for renouncing Islam sparked international outrage, was detained by around 40 security agents, but was then released again by Sudanese authorities. 
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4 her, so she can see how I see her




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Holly Sarah Nguyen
The fear of hurt will hurt you more than facing that fear and finding freedom.
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Lieberman: Invade Gaza for 'Thorough Clean-Up'

Knesset Defense Committee Chair says Israel needs to seriously consider Gaza op following rocket salvo. - Israel National
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Up at Noosa with 24 disabled kids on camp. How's this for the huge moon tonight and the salmon sky.
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This water, in Slovenia, is so clear that the boat looks like floating in the air.
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We need to be givingto exercise that muscle. We need to strive to grow. But that might not be what they need. It gets back to what Dr Phil calls "Life Code" There are people who are pathological. They are conditioned to take. And when it is over, we need to grieve. - ed
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Our great flag flying at half-mast over Parliament House this cold & wintery morning - as a mark of respect for the late Mrs Hazel Hawke AO.
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'Nothing done' as SIEV 358 boatpeople died
THE boat capsized in the dark. It was about 4.30am. There were 200 people on board. Asylum-seekers from Parachinar and Afghanistan, mostly, so crowded they had scarcely been able to move.
The boat had been in trouble for four days. Distress calls had been made to both Indonesian and Australian authorities. But no one had come for them.
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Julia Gillard’s Baby Bonus

What kind of society gives $5,000 lump sum payments to women after an abortion?
What kind of society pays out parental leave schemes to mums and dads who have willingly killed their child?
And, just for the record, I’m not talking about the early abortions here. I’m talking about late-term abortions, when limbs are formed, the heart is pumping, pain is present and the child is viable.
The answer to those questions is simple. Our society.
And why not. If the government has no problem with the killing of a child, then why would it baulk at handing over great wads of taxpayer cash afterwards.
But hold on, I hear you cry. Where is the proof this happens?
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SYDNEY'S BEST SANDWICHES - LUNCH MAY BE LONG GONE, BUT THEY INVENTED THE TERM 'AFTERNOON SNACK' FOR A REASON
If you're looking for a way to indulge on the way home this afternoon, why not gorge yoursef on one of these?
Click here for the full list:www.urbansociety.com.au/urban-insider/dine/sydney-s-best-sandwiches
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Israeli Scientist Discovers Treatment to Save Bee Colonies
An Israeli professor working alongside an Israeli start-up has discovered a treatment for bees affected by a destructive virus.
Hebrew University Prof. Ilan Sela has won this year’s Kaye Award for Innovation for discovering the IAPV virus, which is linked to Colony Collapse Disorder, and for finding a solution to the problem. The Kaye Award for Innovation has been given annually since 1994 as a means to encourage faculty and staff at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem to develop innovative ideas with good commercial potential that benefit society at large.
Colony Collapse Disorder spreading within the bee population has caused $35 billion worth of damages in the US alone. Many crops rely on bees and farmers around the world have been quite worried about the adverse effect on certain crops due to the drastic reduction in the bee population. Until it was known that Colony Collapse Disorder was the culprit, many believed the bee population was being reduced due either to global warming or pesticide use.
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I just saw a unicorn - ed
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In many ways, it is a fake but not as a photograph - ed
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American Betrayal: Diana West Outlines Soviet Infiltration of America During the Cold War (Video)

http://independentfilmnewsandmedia.com/american-betrayal-diana-west-outlines-soviet-infiltration-of-america-during-the-cold-war-video/

Allen West sits down with Author Diana West to discuss her new book, American Betrayal: The Secret Assault On Our Nation’s Character. Find out how hundreds of Soviet spies infiltrated the American government during the Cold War. Check out this fascinating interview to find out what effect this communist subversion had on U.S. policy.
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From Peter Lilley

G.K. Chesterton said that "when people stop believing in orthodox religion, rather than believe in nothing, they will believe in anything". One of the ersatz religions which fills the void in recent years is belief in Catastrophic Man-Made Global Warming. It claims to be based on science. But it has all the characteristics of an eschatological cult.
It has its own priesthood and ecclesiastical establishment - the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; they alone can interpret its sacred scriptures - the Assessment Reports; it anathematises as 'deniers' anyone who casts doubt on its certainties; above all it predicts imminent doom if we do not follow its precepts and make the sacrifices it prescribes.
What most clearly distinguishes the Catastrophic Global Warming cult from science is that it is not refutable by facts. As Parliament enacted the Climate Change Bill, on the presumption that the world was getting warmer, it snowed in London in October - the first time in 74 years. Supporters explained "extreme cold is a symptom of global warming"!
The Met Office - whose climate model is the cult's crystal ball to forecast centuries ahead - has made a series of spectacularly unreliable short term forecasts: "Our children will not experience snow" (that was 2000, before the recent run of cold winters), a barbecue summer (before the dismal 2011 summer), the drought will continue (last spring before the wettest summer on record). Now they say that rain and floods are the new normal. But - hot or cold, wet or dry - global warming is always to blame.
Alarmists are reluctant to admit that the global surface temperature has not increased for 16 years, despite CO2 emissions rising far more than predicted. They wave this inconvenient truth away with the non-sequitur that this decade is the hottest since records began, so the world is still warming. If you climb a hill and reach a flat plateau you are higher than before - but the plateau is flat, not rising. When cornered, global warming alarmists assert that the current pause is simply the result of unspecified 'natural variations'. That implies that the pronounced warming over the previous 25 years may have been amplified by 'natural variations' in the other direction. In which case, the likely temperature rise for a given increase in CO2 may be less than previously estimated or required to produce the threatened doom.
In 2006 I asked how long the pause in warming would have to persist before the Met Office would revise its model. They replied that, since it is based on known laws of physics, they would never adjust it. Just like the German philosopher Hegel, who claimed to derive the laws of nature from first principles: when told that the facts did not agree with his theories, Hegel replied: "So much the worse for the facts"! Climate models do incorporate some established physical laws including the basic greenhouse effect which, having studied physics at Cambridge, I accept. This implies that doubling the concentration of CO2 will raise the temperature by a fairly harmless 1.2ºC. But the models amplify this several fold using assumptions about complex phenomena which cannot yet be reduced to simple physical laws.

This cult enables adherents to feel morally superior at little personal cost. Buy a Prius or vote Green and save the planet. Unfortunately, costly renewables are driving many into fuel poverty and manufacturing jobs overseas. Action by Britain is pointless unless China, India and Africa join in. They are most vulnerable to climate change. But they are vulnerable because they are poor. They will remain poor until they harness energy like us. Requiring them to forego fossil fuels in favour of renewables costing several times more condemns them to remain poor. The cult requires sacrificing the poor to Gaia. As Professor Bruckner concludes: "save the earth, punish mankind" .
Peter Lilley was a speaker at this year's HowTheLightGetsIn festival
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Mick Aston, a former resident academic on Channel 4's Time Team, has died at the age of 66.
He appeared on the show, which sees experts carry out archaeological digs, from its inception in 1994 until 2011.
Professor Aston lived in Somerset and taught at a number of UK universities.
Time Team's official Twitter account tweeted: "It is with a very heavy heart that we've been informed that our dear colleague Mick Aston has passed away. Our thoughts are with his family."
The exact circumstances of the death of Prof Aston, who was born and raised in Oldbury, in the West Midlands, and was known on the show for his colourful jumpers and unruly white hair, are not yet known.


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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today (Monday, 24 June 2013), attended the unveiling of a memorial plaque at the Prof. Benzion Netanyahu School in the Samarian community of Barkan. Education Minister Shai Piron and Samaria Regional Council Chairman Gershon Mesika also attended the ceremony.

The Prof. Benzion Netanyahu School opened at the beginning of the current academic year and accepts pupils from Barkan, Nofim and Alei Zahav.

Prime Minister Netanyahu observed the exhibition on Benzion Netanyahu at the school and spoke with pupils.

Prime Minister Netanyahu said: "My father thought that the revival of the Jewish People was not self-evident, that it was something we had to want, to justify. He thought that with our return to our homeland and the re-establishment of our sovereignty, that there would be many would not agree with this and who would try to uproot us from our homeland and eliminate our state; therefore, he thought that a fundamental part of the establishment of the State of Israel as a renewed Jewish state was the ability of the Jews to defend themselves by themselves. This has guided me in every arena against every threat. Yesterday, rockets were fired at our communities – and the response was immediate. My policy is to strike at those who try to attack us. There is no trickle, there is no accumulation, this is how we will operate against both near and distant threats. This is the first thing that my father believed in, and I believe that the Jews must be capable of defending themselves by themselves and to take determined action against any enemy that tries to attack us.

The second thing – we believe in the rule of law. This says that there can be no lawbreakers. There is no Price Tag or any other kind of tag. Of course, we are acting against other enemies, real enemies, who seek our lives, and we cannot allow the law to fray from within. We are acting with a strong hand against this as well, and we will continue to do so.

But the most important thing my father believed in is that we need to believe in ourselves, in the justice of our cause, in our link to our land, which we will continue to develop, not just physically but also in terms of development, in terms of trees, I would say, in terms of branches and fruit, and of roots. The most important thing is to deepen the roots – because from these everything grows. Today, we are here deepening our roots, and I am proud that you have decided to name this fine school after my father Benzion. I simply regret that he cannot be here with us, but his spirit is with us."

Education Minister Piron said: "When I was a student I would read about Prof. Benzion Netanyahu almost every day, a man of values who deeply impressed me even as a child. It would be a great honor for Benzion's spirit to be part of your lives, more than the honor of naming a school after him."

Samaria Regional Council Chairman Mesika said: "It is a pleasure to commemorate the name of Prof, Benzion Netanyahu. The further we delved, the more we were exposed to his image and his personality which embody a love of the people and the land, amidst a strong faith in the revival of the Jewish People in its Land. When one studies about Benzion, one understands, Mr. Prime Minister, from where you draw the strength to lead the Jewish People."

Photo: Moshe Milner, GPO

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47 Million Year Old Golden Beetle Fossil
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HISTORY IN THE HEADLINES: A new study by researchers has revealed that adding silver to antibiotics may increase the medications effectiveness. But helping antibiotics fight powerful drug-resistant bacteria is only the latest non-monetary use that humans have found for silver throughout history. Find out more:http://histv.co/11Zm4cw
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Joe Hildebrand explains this week in politics, with the PM announcing a Gender Inquiry whilst knitting.
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Unchallenged lies, deception and distortion eventually develop into accepted truths, and in due course, propaganda becomes empowered, feeding ignorance and hatred. Ignorance then, unfortunately, supports many levels of hate agendas.
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Indira Gandhi
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“But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.” 2 Thessalonians 3:3 NIV
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Charles Spurgeon's Morning and Evening

Morning

"A certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked. But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it."
Luke 11:27-28
It is fondly imagined by some that it must have involved very special privileges to have been the mother of our Lord, because they supposed that she had the benefit of looking into his very heart in a way in which we cannot hope to do. There may be an appearance of plausibility in the supposition, but not much. We do not know that Mary knew more than others; what she did know she did well to lay up in her heart; but she does not appear from anything we read in the Evangelists to have been a better-instructed believer than any other of Christ's disciples. All that she knew we also may discover. Do you wonder that we should say so? Here is a text to prove it: "The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him, and he will show them his covenant." Remember the Master's words--"Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his Lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you." So blessedly does this Divine Revealer of secrets tell us his heart, that he keepeth back nothing which is profitable to us; his own assurance is, "If it were not so, I would have told you." Doth he not this day manifest himself unto us as he doth not unto the world? It is even so; and therefore we will not ignorantly cry out, "Blessed is the womb that bare thee," but we will intelligently bless God that, having heard the Word and kept it, we have first of all as true a communion with the Saviour as the Virgin had, and in the second place as true an acquaintance with the secrets of his heart as she can be supposed to have obtained. Happy soul to be thus privileged!

Evening

"Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said ... Be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods."
Daniel 3:16-18
The narrative of the manly courage and marvellous deliverance of the three holy children, or rather champions, is well calculated to excite in the minds of believers firmness and steadfastness in upholding the truth in the teeth of tyranny and in the very jaws of death. Let young Christians especially learn from their example, both in matters of faith in religion, and matters of uprightness in business, never to sacrifice their consciences. Lose all rather than lose your integrity, and when all else is gone, still hold fast a clear conscience as the rarest jewel which can adorn the bosom of a mortal. Be not guided by the will-o'-the-wisp of policy, but by the pole-star of divine authority. Follow the right at all hazards. When you see no present advantage, walk by faith and not by sight. Do God the honour to trust him when it comes to matters of loss for the sake of principle. See whether he will be your debtor! See if he doth not even in this life prove his word that "Godliness, with contentment, is great gain," and that they who "seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, shall have all these things added unto them." Should it happen that, in the providence of God, you are a loser by conscience, you shall find that if the Lord pays you not back in the silver of earthly prosperity, he will discharge his promise in the gold of spiritual joy. Remember that a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of that which he possesseth. To wear a guileless spirit, to have a heart void of offence, to have the favour and smile of God, is greater riches than the mines of Ophir could yield, or the traffic of Tyre could win. "Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and inward contention therewith." An ounce of heart's-ease is worth a ton of gold.
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Ahitub

[Ăhī'tub] - brother of benevolence orfather of goodness.
  1. A son of Phinehas and grandson of Eli (1 Sam. 14:3; 22:9, 11, 12, 20).
  2. A son of Amariah and father of Zadok the priest (2 Sam. 8:17; 1 Chron. 6:11, 12). Perhaps the same as No. 1.
  3. A priest and ruler of the House of God in Nehemiah's time (1 Chron. 9:11; Neh. 11:11).
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Today's reading: Job 1-2, Acts 7:22-43 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Job 1-2

Prologue
In the land of Uz there lived a man whose name was Job. This man was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil. 2 He had seven sons and three daughters, 3 and he owned seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen and five hundred donkeys, and had a large number of servants. He was the greatest man among all the people of the East.
4 His sons used to hold feasts in their homes on their birthdays, and they would invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. 5 When a period of feasting had run its course, Job would make arrangements for them to be purified. Early in the morning he would sacrifice a burnt offering for each of them, thinking, "Perhaps my children have sinned and cursed God in their hearts." This was Job's regular custom....

Today's New Testament reading: Acts 7:22-43

22 Moses was educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was powerful in speech and action.
23 "When Moses was forty years old, he decided to visit his own people, the Israelites. 24 He saw one of them being mistreated by an Egyptian, so he went to his defense and avenged him by killing the Egyptian. 25 Moses thought that his own people would realize that God was using him to rescue them, but they did not. 26 The next day Moses came upon two Israelites who were fighting. He tried to reconcile them by saying, 'Men, you are brothers; why do you want to hurt each other?'
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