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Why can't everyone condemn Hamas?

Following Hamas' atrocities in Israel, the media are awash with commentary, so I will keep my comments short. I am shocked by the willin...

Monday 29 April 2024

Columbia U shameful antisemitism

 I guess many of us have seen the outbreak of antisemitism in many Ivy League Univesrites. Columbia is one that has received more attention recently due to its encampment where Hamas supporting students have declared they have taken over, Jewish students have been orecpvented from attending classes and have been advised to stay at home. This is all supported by many academics and management has done nothing to stop it.

Watch this Columbia U graduate state her views, she does not hold back!

Well done!

Sunday 28 April 2024

The robots are coming, the robots are coming…

AI has been quietly simmering in the background for years, but it’s suddenly burst into the limelight like a tech celebrity crashing a college frat party. While the public is just now catching AI fever, the brilliant minds behind the scenes have been relentlessly tinkering away to produce these mind-blowing breakthroughs.

But as amazing as AI’s meteoric rise seems, there’s another game-changing technology lurking in the shadows, poised to make an even bigger splash – the incredible world of robots. We’ve been dreaming about intelligent humanoid machines since Isaac Asimov’s sci-fi days, but when real-world robots first arrived, they were more like glorified appliances than the stuff of our wildest imaginings.

These early robots were essentially robotic worker bees, meticulously following pre-programmed instructions to crank out repetitive tasks 24/7 without needing breaks or overtime pay. Factories and warehouses were quick to adopt these tireless automatons, but they were a far cry from the sentient androids we’d envisioned.

That’s all about to change, though. A new breed of robots is emerging, one that integrates AI to create humanoid assistants that are shockingly close to Asimov’s vision. These cutting-edge 'bots use AI to understand instructions and generate their own programs, eliminating the need for arduous task-by-task programming. They can also see, hear, and interact with us like science fiction come to life.

While the first wave of robots replaced human muscle, this new generation will replace human minds. AI has already started automating cognitive tasks, and AI-powered humanoid robots will be able to handle both mental and physical labor. From factories to offices, retail to travel, you name it – these robot assistants could eventually take over virtually every job that doesn’t require elite-level brainpower.

For now, the high-minded jobs like research scientists, CEOs, and politicians are probably safe. But for most other professions? You might want to watch your back, because the 'bots are coming for your paycheck.

This sci-fi futureshock raises some crazy questions, like how society will function when most jobs are automated. How do we overhaul the entire system without causing total chaos? Those are ridiculously tough challenges to tackle another day.

But for now, let’s bask in the mind-blowing potential of these humanoid worker 'bots. I’ve got a couple of cool videos lined up that’ll really blow your circuits…

First up is this flick from the Cold Fusion YouTube channel, covering the recent crazy strides in humanoid robot development.

The second is a promotional video for one such robot from China;

So it seems it is no longer ‘where are the robots?’ but, ‘don’t bother, they’re here’.

Thursday 25 April 2024

In memoriam of the Brave


In fields where poppies bloom, they lie, The valiant souls who dared to try, For freedom's call, they stood so tall, Their sacrifice, our nation's pride.

Through tumultuous times they strode, With courage, in the face of woe, Their legacy, a beacon bright, Guiding us through darkest night.

Their blood, the ink on history's page, A testament to courage's gauge, For liberty, they fought with might, And in their memory, we unite.

Eternal vigilance, our creed, To honor those who bravely lead, Their sacrifice, a sacred trust, For freedom's cause, we must adjust.

Leaders, heed this solemn call, Invest in defense, stand tall, Against all threats, both near and far, Protecting peace, our guiding star.

Let us speak with voices strong, In harmony, a nation's song, For love of country, freedom's reign, In unity, we find our gain.

With respect, we forge ahead, A society by bonds of thread, And in our hearts, let patriotism soar, For those who've given all and more.

(Assisted by ChatGPT)

Wednesday 24 April 2024

Of babies and bathwater.

Disinformation, misinformation, tech giants, and censorship have suddenly become the singular issue of the day. Illegal immigrants arriving magically on Australia's shores, the record level of migration, the dirty tricks played by Labor ministers relating to Brittany Higgins, and even the cost of living issues have been replaced in the headlines. I guess that seems to be justification enough. Yet today's talking points are about Elon Musk and Jacqui Lambie's calls for an 'X-odus'. 

The issue is being presented in such naive terms that it is hard not to react. As presented it is a simple case. Do we want wanton violence pushed by Social media to unsuspecting innocent users? Why should these high-tech billionaires corrupt the minds of the innocent? 

It is hard to argue that the violence shown on social media is healthy for anyone. Even a short sojourn through the pages of X or Meta shows many videos portraying violence, sometimes wanton violence. Youth seem to capture fights with multiple assailants ganging up on a single victim, or one on one fights, or even just accidental capture of an unprovoked attack on a passerby. Then of course there are the demonstrations with large mobs screaming slogans at pedestrians who happen today to be Israeli, or even just 'look openly Jewish'.  Then again there is the footage of terrorist attacks and war in action. At a less direct level, there is the precursor of violence. The full-throated exhortations by so-called 'preachers' to denigrate, vilify and demean a race, a religion a people and quote the Koran that condones their murder. 
So yes, there is widespread violence, threats of violence and incitement to violence on Social Media.

But then again these are not confined to social media alone. You can see the same in our Newspapers our televisions and of course plenty of violence in our movies. Violence is not confined to social media. Yes, many will counter, that there are better controls on our media, with some well-defined rules as to what can and what cannot be shown and at various time-slots. Social media seem to have an exemption as they are not classified as 'publishers'. Of course the publishers would like to level the playing field and have social media also classified as publishers. And maybe so. I will leave that argument, for another occasion. Yet it will not solve the problem given that wanton violence is everywhere in our 'publisher ' media too.

The sudden focus on a single video of a terrorist attack on a Christian bishop however seems strangely convenient. Convenient? Yes, convenient. Just last year the government tried to introduce legislation that would have given widespread power to some media bureaucrats to censor social media.  In response to a request for public commentary the government received some 25000 submissions against the legislation so the government reluctantly shelved its implementation
Given this history, many are suspicious that the sudden vilification of social media following the recent terrorist attack is being used to soften us up for another attempt at this legislation. Certainly the government has not asked for many equally offensive videos to be removed from social media. On ABC television there is still a video showing an indigenous assailant stabbing a police officer and in trun being shot by a second police officer. This video is similar in violent content to the stabbing of the Christian Bishop. So what standard are they really pushing?

Censorship is a difficult area, We have a wide range of views regarding what should or should not be censored. I too have my own limits and find much of what I see,  and pass through quickly, on X beyond my limit. Yet censorship has a cost. We should be very cautious about our willingness to censor speech/video we do not like. Any laws that prevent speech/video we personally do not like will end up restricting our access to information that we need. One does not have to think too far back to our recent Pandemic handling to realise the types of abuse governments will use to prevent us from accessing information they do not want us to have. Consider these questions regarding the recent COVID-19 pandemic
  • Did COVID-19 come from a lab? 
  • Are the vaccines safe? 
  • Did the masks work? 
  • Were lockdowns necessary? 
  • what is the cause of excess deaths? 
  • Does Ivermectin work?
All these questions have been taboo, and really remain taboo even today. Yet consider if we had had the chance for open discussion and consideration of these questions. We would have greater trust in our Police and our government, and our society would be better prepared for any future pandemic. So the consequences of censorship are very serious indeed. 

The possibility of abuse of censorship laws is the major argument against such censorship. 
So let's avoid censorship and not throw the baby out with the bathwater.


Tuesday 23 April 2024

'The Most Secure Election in American History'

In an in-depth article published in The Gatestone Institute John Eastman raises a range of issues that put a lie to the oft-quoted statement that the 2020 Presidential election was "The most Secure Election in American History"

The article is rather long and well worth a full read, but here is a summary of the key points. (Note I have used Copilot AI to assist with this)

"The article raises concerns about the 2020 U.S. election and highlights specific issues:
  1. Legal Challenges:

    • Texas Lawsuit: Texas filed an action in the Supreme Court against Pennsylvania, Georgia, Wisconsin, and Michigan.
      • Allegations: These swing states’ election officers violated election law, potentially impacting the election outcome.
      • Specific Violations:
        • In Georgia, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger unilaterally changed signature verification rules, rendering them unconstitutional.
        • Pennsylvania’s Secretary of the Commonwealth, Kathy Boockvar, eliminated signature verification statutes.
        • In Wisconsin, election officials set up drop boxes and ran a ballot harvesting scheme.
    • These legal challenges question the integrity of the election process.
  2. Pennsylvania’s Vote Discrepancy:

    • Records indicate that there were 120,000 more votes cast than the total number of voters in Pennsylvania.
    • The margin of victory in Pennsylvania was only 80,000 votes.
    • This discrepancy raises concerns about the accuracy of the vote count.
  3. Georgia’s Signature Verification Change:

    • Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s rule change undermined signature matching requirements.
    • The alteration may have affected the validity of ballots.
  4. Wisconsin’s Ballot Harvesting:

    • Human drop boxes were set up in Madison, Wisconsin, which violated state law.
    • Some ballots lacked complete witness signatures.
    • These irregularities warrant scrutiny.
  5. Overall Concerns:

    • The elimination of protective statutes may have facilitated fraud.
    • The article underscores the need to address these issues to ensure election security and restore public confidence.

In summary, John Eastman’s article critically examines the 2020 election process, highlighting potential vulnerabilities and urging further investigation."

Monday 22 April 2024

Did Israel Carpe the Diem?

A few days ago I speculated on the range of options Israel had for their response to Iran's unprecedented direct attack on Israel. (see my earlier Carpe Diem )

If you listen to the mainstream media it was 'ho-hum'. More significantly if you listen to Iran's comments it was also 'ho-hum, nothing to see here, not even a scratch'. So is this true?

Perhaps we should take a short detour and revisit Iran's attack. There is no doubt Iran's was a large scale direct attack on Israeli territory. Over 300 projectile weapons were directed at a wide range of military and non-military targets within Israeli territory. They included ballistic and cruise missiles, and drones. By all accounts a large majority of the drones were shot down even before they reached Israeli air-space, and virtually all the missiles were shot down without hitting their targets. The only injury reported is of a single young girl hit by shrapnel resulting from the destruction of one of the missiles.

Most significantly Israel was assisted by the US, UK and Jordan in directly shooting down the drones and missiles, and ground assistance (radar intelligence) was also provided by Saudi Arabia and UAE. The willingness of these Sunni states to join in protecting Israel from the Iranian attack is notable.
In many respects, Israel's success in repelling Iran's attack was already disarming for Iran. A miracle according to the account below.

After the large-scale attack by Iran, Israel's response seems minor. While Iran's attack was a major television extravaganza with extensive coverage by all media. Direct footage of projectiles being destroyed over Israel, including quite dramatic footage over the Al Aqsa mosque. 

In contrast, the attack on Iran was not covered widely at all. There were some reports of explosions around a military base in Isfahan. Iran reported they had shot down a number of drones. We also heard some sites in Syria and Iraq were bombed. No casualties were reported. Israel has not commented on its attack, at all. This allowed Iran to downplay the attack as insignificant. But is this true? Perhaps not.

Several reports have emerged that praise the strategic success of Israel's attack. The video below titled
highlights Israel's success in penetrating Iran's air defences. 

I guess time will tell, but so far Israel has -
  • successfully defended its territory against a direct attack by Iran with over 300 projectiles
  • forged a de-facto allegiance with Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and UAE against Iran (this will not be publicized but when it came to action they were there )
  • penetrated Iran's best air defence and bombed selected targets within Iranian territory in one of their largest cities
  • demonstrated its defensive and offensive superiority
  • allowed Iran to walk away from further aggression without losing face
All round not too bad.

Wednesday 17 April 2024

Carpe Diem

Are we at the crossroads? Can we take the opportunity granted by recent unwelcome and unprecedented events to correct for the evil that we have seen seep into our world community? Is it time to seize the day?

The unwarranted launch of 300 airborne weapons by Iran aimed at both military AND non-military targets in Israel has opened a door. A door that was heretofore shut due to the likely condemnation of Western World sensibilities. Had Israel attacked Iran directly even despite the multiple attacks instigated by Iran against Israel but committed by its puppet armies, it would have been regarded as provocative and condemned. 

However, after the massive attack on Israel directly from Iran the game has changed. This was the first direct attack on Israeli territory from Iranian territory. The shadowboxing veil has been dropped, at least for this attack. Iran was trying to provide a disproportionate response to Israel's attack on a senior military personnel meeting in an annex to Iran's embassy in Damascus. Israel's attack had been a serious blow & embarrassment to Iran. For Israel, these were very valuable military targets, in particular one of the organisers of the Oct 7th Hamas massacre.

After Iran's attack, Israel has vowed to respond. No doubt Iran had expected this but hopes it is 'proportional', or limited. And the Western World has again lectured Israel about its likely response calling for it to be 'restrained'. Some of Israel's allies have threatened (USA, UK) and even ceased (Canada, Belgium) arms shipments. So much for so-called 'allies'.

Yet, having survived the massive attack by Iran, virtually unscathed, Israel has a singular opportunity to attack Iran without incurring the condemnation of the Western World. Of course, no matter what it does there will be some countries that will condemn it, but there is a clear moral right for Israel to respond.

There are many ways that Israel could respond. They can be broken into three categories

  1. A short sharp proportional response  A relatively mild but sufficient response to show that it will always respond to an attack. This would be a response against military infrastructure only, but of sufficient intensity and value to give Iran a 'bloody nose'. Given Iran's attack had been thwarted any successful destruction of military bases would be a lesson, proving Israel to be more capable than Iran
  2. A consequential economic attack A militarily simple but economically consequential attack on Iran's critical infrastructure. This could be oil pipelines, Oil refineries, oil export terminals, electricity power stations, water supplies, maritime terminals, etc. While these are soft targets, and not strictly military they would expose Iran's vulnerability and most importantly enlist the Iranian population into condemning the Islamist regime.
  3. An all-out re-establishment of deterrence As a final option, Israel could go 'disproportionate' with a direct attack on Iran's nuclear facilities and eliminate a major threat to the entire Middle East and the World. A successful attack on Iran's nuclear facilities would be welcomed by the world, and would, if successful, give Iran more than just a bloody nose, it would seriously embarrass the regime and elevate Israel. It would also prevent a potential nuclear catastrophe should Iran develop multiple nuclear weapons or even if not deployed would prevent Iran from being elevated above its neighbors as a nuclear weapon state.

While option 1 would most likely be allowed to pass without another attack from Iran, the other options would most likely have further consequences. The most likely being another barrage of rockets from Hezbollah, perhaps a full war, or even force Iran into a direct open war with Israel. 

There are high costs to any of these options. Although no immediate response to the first, it will leave Israel weaker and encourage further adventurism from Iran. In the long term maybe the higher cost options are preferable.

If Churchill had won the day in the early1930s and the Allies had attacked Germany before it built its formidable army, it would have saved 50 million lives!

In that case, Chamberlain won and the world lost.

Today Israel's decision may also have a heavy price.

Of course, these are nothing more than guesses. But we will see in the coming days.

 The consequence of this latter would be I see a couple of different approaches;t can respond by attacking military infrastructure

Tuesday 9 April 2024

Uncontrolled immigration causes social division!

In what has proven to be a prophetic presentation, a younger Douglas Murray pinpointed the consequences of uncontrolled immigration. In his Oxford debate some 10 years ago on the topic "Immigration is Bad for Britain", Murray spoke of the dangers of uncontrolled, rapid immigration.

He noted that 
  • Before the rapid immigration that started in the 1990's Britain was a far more homogeneous and socially united country
  • Despite there being some immigration benefits there is a downside as well. Some studies prove that the cost of migration is greater than the benefits they bring
  • The greatest cost is the impact on social cohesion. The introduction of large numbers of individuals who share a different set of values than the rest of the country invariably leads to divisions and competition between conflicting values
  • As a result values that defined what it meant to be British including, the institution of Western Judeo-Christian moral code, the belief in Law and Order, and the institutions of Parliament, have been gradually whittled away with competing ideas from cultures that do not share these value.

Given what has happened to Britain in the past 30 years his words are prophetic.

British culture is not what it was, and Britain has indeed lost its social cohesion.

This is a warning for many people in the world where rapid immigration has created enclaves of people with values different from the countries they have adopted.

Nothing highlights this breakdown in values more than the recent anti-Israeli marches with many migrants (first or second generation) not only protesting against Israel but openly condemning and even burning the flags of the country which they had adopted.

Douglas Murray saw this coming, we should have listened!

(If you wish to hear the whole debate see it here ; 


Sunday 7 April 2024

Who is to blame?

We have seen this story before. A bank robbery has gone wrong, the police have the bank surrounded with the 4 would-be-robbers holding twenty hostages. The police negotiator using his best patient and compliant manner has offered food, and has calmed the trigger-happy gunmen. The barter is simple, they want their freedom in exchange for the freedom of the hostages. As always it is a long and complex negotiation. Lots of pizza is delivered. The delivery man is an undercover cop, who sizes up the locations of the gangsters, the hostages and the layout. The SWAT team is already on site, ready and eager to get their hands on the bastards, but the negotiator holds them off feeling he can avoid bloodshed. 

It has taken 10 hours and everyone is tired and edgy. A gunshot rings out. Something has happened. The SWAT team is given the go-ahead to bring the stand-off to an end.

Flash-bangs, gun fire, sniper action, and all is over in just a minute. The result?
All gunmen were shot, 18 hostages were safe, but one hostage had been shot by one of the robbers, and another was shot and killed when a SWAT team member aiming at a gunman accidentally shot a hostage.

So who is to blame for the death of the hostage? Not who caused the death but who is to blame? The law is clear on this. If someone is killed during a felony the perpetrator of the felony is responsible and will be charged with murder.

So why am I raising this?
Apply this to the recent accidental deaths of aid workers in Gaza. Who is to blame? Israel has accepted that it was responsible for the deaths, and has taken action to punish the perpetrators. But who is to blame for the deaths?

In a court of law, it would be Hamas. So it should be in all our minds. Had Hamas not broken the peace on Oct 7, none of the deaths would have occurred.

World opinion is being manipulated for various reasons that I won't get into here. So all the more we need to maintain moral clarity. In Gaza there would be no civilian deaths, no widespread damage to infrastructure, no upheaval in the daily lives of citizens and no food shortages had Hamas not started a war by massacring innocent civilian Israelis and taking many hostage. Hamas started the war, and every death including the death of the aid workers, is on their head.

Friday 5 April 2024

At last, excess deaths are being investigated

Change comes slowly, but sometimes it does eventually come. In an Australian first, the Australian Senate has voted to establish an enquiry into the sudden and dramatic increase in excess mortality in recent years. From a baseline of -3% in 2020, the Australian Bureau of Statistics has reported excess mortality of excess mortality of  1.6% in 2021, 11.7% in 2022, and 6.1% in 2023. These relatively small percentages represent very large numbers and are statistically significant. The variation in mortality is normally very low. 

While this is being investigated in Australia it is not just an Australian phenomenon, it is worldwide. 

I have posted on this many times so I won't repeat the background. Please review these posts if you have not been following the story; Why are our leaders ignoring the unexplained rise in Non-COVID mortality?, and Examining Excess Mortality Beyond COVID: A Call for Open Discourse - updated 3 October, and Excess deaths debate 16 January

In any case the following link to Ben Fordham's show on Radio 2GB gives a good background.

It is late, but well worth doing. After all who knows what new demon is being cooked up in Virology labs around the world. We need to understand what has happened and make more sensible decisions next time.