March 2002 Archives

March 27, 2002

Save us from evil cashpoints.

South African magistrates have postponed an arson case against a 47 year old man because psychologists haven't decided if he's a loony yet. Joseph Lekalakala has been under observation in a mental hospital since February 7th, when he was arrested on suspicion of setting fire to a bank machine. He wears the uniform and badges of an organisation called the Zionist Christian Church and told arresting officers he was acting on instructions from Church leader, bishop Barnabas Lekganyane. He claims he is blameless as the machines are evil. Religious Fanatic Sent for Additional Psychological Tests - African Eye News Service, March 27th 2002 (via

March 26, 2002


United States: The Catholic League are a group of US Catholics who see anti-Catholic bigotry everywhere, especially if the 'bigots' are simply passing fair comment. Every Easter the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence celebrate their anniversary in the way they know best, and every year the Catholic League complains. They make it sound very exciting:

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, a group of San Francisco homosexuals dressed as nuns, will celebrate Easter with an Indulgence in the Park. They will feature a clown-drag-nun fundraiser and a Hunky Jesus contest. On Good Friday they will have a traditional observance of Very Good Friday with scantily clad men.

Their president, William Donohoe, compared it to mocking homosexuals on Gay Pride Day, something no Catholic would ever do. And, in a totally unhateful manner, he continued:

How neat it would be to hire a private eye to trail those in attendance at these three events. Catholics need to know who their enemy is. But who needs private eyes when we already know who it is: well-educated agnostics, atheists and embittered ex-Catholics who sip latte, hang-out in library carrels and have an aversion to makeup (save for going in drag).

Does the Pope wear eyeliner then?

CATHOLIC BASHERS DELIVER EASTER MESSAGE—Catholic League press release, March 26th 2002 (Thanks to Sister Hedra Sexual for alerting me to this one).
Gratuitous link to the Scottish Order of Perpetual Indulgence.

Satan Still Busy

Satan-blaming seems to be all the rage in Germany, and not just since Manuela and Daniel Ruda were sentenced to long terms in mental institutions earlier this year. The most recent case involves a 16-year-old, Bjorn Arns, who slit the throats of his parents after they refused to let him go out with friends. Over 30 murders and suicides in Germany during the last two years have been blamed on Satan. Germany shocked as boy murders parents in latest 'satanic' atrocity - The Scotsman, March 26th 2002 (when the article expires, the password for is Crail63).

St. Anton's CoS Primary School

The general secreatary of a teaching union has voiced his concerns about the government's support for religious schools. Peter Smith of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers fears the government will find itself obliged to fund schools run by some extremely dubious organisations:

Suppose, for example, there was an application to open the Osama bin Laden academy: who exactly would say 'No, you can't'? On what justification?

As he invited the (Christian dominated) government to produce a list of 'approved' religions, he told the union's annual conference in Cardiff just how difficult that task would be:

Favouring, for largely historic reasons, some faiths at the expense of others can no longer be justified. However, it will be acutely difficult to distinguish between mainstream religions and cults or fundamentalist sects, many of which are backed by substantial private funds.

Teachers worried by faith schools - Guardian Unlimited, March 26th 2002.

Researcher Harassed by Police

Bill Thompson, a leading criminologist noted for his application of logic and common sense to allegations of Satanic abuse, is being harassed by Thames Valley police. It seems he's upset a few people by suggesting that the same stringent standards of evidence be used in cases of alleged child abuse as are applied in any other criminal case. Silenced Witness - Daily Telegraph, March 24th 2002.
Avedon Carol's view.

March 22, 2002

A Grave Mistake.

The late Communist leader, Marshall Tito, is one of a group of ghosts said to be haunting a block of flats in what used to be Yugoslavia. The ghosts are making weird noises in the night and Tito's image has appeared on the bedroom wall in one flat. The block is built on a First World War military graveyard in Nis, Serbia. Grave twist for tenants - Edinburgh Evening News, March 22nd 2002.

Social Workers

A year-long inquiry has concluded that there was nothing legal which could have been done to prevent the murder of a 12-year old boy by a seriously mentally ill man. Edward Crowley, who had changed his name after developing an obsession with the notorious Aleister Crowley, stabbed Diego Pineiro 30 times in Central London while on bail. Magistrates had concluded that his condition was not serious enough to warrant keeping him in custody under the Mental Health Act.

Crowley had developed a friendship with the boy, but there had been no sexual relationship. He had been unable to accept it when the Pineiro tried to break off the friendship. Although Crowley acted alone, and was clearly mentally ill, this will undoubtedly become "proof" of an evil, child abusing Satanic conspiracy in the eyes of certain people. Occult killing inquiry no 'whitewash' - BBC News, March 22nd 2002.

Meanwhile, a Christian child protection organisation has admitted that churches are a danger to children. In a document due to be presented to the Victoria Climbié Inquiry today, the Churches' Child Protection Advisory Service confess that many churches and Christian groups have lax child protection procedures, and that some churches collude in child abuse.

Eight-year old Victoria Climbié's carers killed her in February 2000 after months of abuse, yet preachers at three churches she attended failed to notice any problem. Pastor Pascal Ormome of Ensemble Pour Christ Church even thought the girl was possessed. Churches a 'danger to children' - BBC News, March 22nd 2002.
Victoria Climbié Inquiry home page.

Where's Jesus?

Seven members of a Kenyan Christian group have been arrested after locking themselves away in a secluded den to await the second coming, which they believe will happen on April 24th this year. The Emmanuel Church members had sold their property and removed their children from school to await the momentous occasion. Police Arrest Seven Doomsday Cult Members - The East African Standard, March 21st 2002 (via

March 21, 2002


Google has caved in to a threatening letter from the "Church" of Scientology, the dangerous psychological cult founded by hack science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard. The cultists used the DMCA as a stick to force the search engine to remove links to sites critical of their business. Here's the site that upset them the most: Operation Clambake - the fight against the Church of Scientology on the Net. But if linking to this site contravened the CoS's copyright, then linking to the organisation's own site certainly does. Will Google remove links to official Scientology sites, just to be sure?


An on-going controversy in the United States concerns the release of some tapes from Nixon's presidency in the early 1970s. In particular, the tapes feature highly anti-semitic conversations including some with evangelist Billy Graham (who has since apologised). When he received the latest tapes, containing 'rants' on drug policy, Gene Weingarten of the Washington Post hoped for some light relief. Instead, he heard Nixon say this on May 26th 1971:

You know, it's a funny thing, every one of the bastards that are out for legalizing marijuana is Jewish. What the Christ is the matter with the Jews, Bob? What is the matter with them? I suppose it is because most of them are psychiatrists.

Nixon opposed decriminalisation of cannabis because people smoke it to get high, but considered alcohol to be okay because people drink that to have fun. While the distinction might not be clear to us lesser mortals, according to Weingarten, it was evidently enormously significant to Nixon, because he repeats it twice.

He also made it clear that he was not fond of homosexuals, refusing to shake hands with anyone from northern California!

Just What Was He Smoking?The Washington Post, 21st March 2002 (thanks to Rick Gordon for drawing my attention to this story).

Oh dear.

A silly fundie has decided to bother my beloved before his morning coffee. Why are most evangelists illiterate? Rudeness and mind viruses - Charlie's Diary, March 21st 2002.

Sweet, darling children

A teenage girl in Bedford killed herself after being bullied over her interest in Wicca. A gang at Sharnbrook Upper School taunted her with chants, including Ding, dong, the witch is dead and Burn the witch. The school's headmaster told the inquiry that he hadn't thought the bullying was enough to cause a suicide bid, but afterwards he learned that the pupils had started to make bets on who would be next to kill themselves. Schoolgirl 'witch' driven to suicide - The Independent, March 21st 2002.

March 20, 2002

Getting it right

The Irish have their priorities sorted, it seems. A recent survey shows that 22% of the population consider going to church regularly to be important, but 35% made going to the pub once a week a priority. Pints more important than church - survey - UTV Internet, March 19th 2002.

March 19, 2002

Unsafe Sex

An ancient tradition has been axed because of safety fears. Every three years, the maypole at Barwick-in-Elmet in West Yorkshire is lowered for maintenance and then raised again using only ropes and ladders. In future a crane will be used because organisers fear they'll be sued if anything goes wrong. Ancient maypole tradition axed on safety grounds - Ananova, March 18th 2002.

March 16, 2002


A Chilean greengrocer faces bankruptcy after having his penis amputated in a botched operation. Superstitious customers are avoiding his stall because they think he will bring bad luck. He is trying to sue the doctor responsible. Residents on the island of Castro are noted for their superstition - they believe the place is controlled by wizards, for example. Man 'faces bankruptcy' after having penis amputated - Ananova, March 15th 2002.

Some housekeeping.

The Summer 1994 edition of the Prattle is now online. I've also started manually archiving, which is why, the day after I started doing this, a new version of the blogging software I use came out - it supports archiving. The upgrade will take place in the next couple of days.

March 14, 2002

Same Old Story

In Europe and North America, the Satanic Abuse nonsense effectively replaced the old Blood Libel against the Jews but that bit of mediæval shite is still alive and well in parts of the Middle East, and not necessarily the parts you'd expect either.

Al-Riyadh is the government newspaper of Saudi Arabia. On March 10th, it published a column, The Jewish Holiday of Purim, by Dr. Umayma Ahmad Al-Jalahma of King Faysal University in Al-Dammam. In it, he claims that the Jews make special pastries which must include the dehydrated blood of a non-Jewish child under the age of 10.

Let us now examine how the victims' blood is spilled. For this, a needle-studded barrel is used; this is a kind of barrel, about the size of the human body, with extremely sharp needles set in it on all sides. [These needles] pierce the victim's body, from the moment he is placed in the barrel. These needles do the job, and the victim's blood drips from him very slowly. Thus, the victim suffers dreadful torment -- torment that affords the Jewish vampires great delight as they carefully monitor every detail of the blood-shedding with pleasure and love that are difficult to comprehend.

A quick glance at Leviticus 7:26-27 and Leviticus 17:10-14 (which prohibit the consumption of blood of any kind), and Leviticus 11:3 and Deuteronomy 14:6 (which specify that any mammals eaten must have cloven hooves and chew the cud) reveals that this tale is a likely as devout Muslims shagging pigs before eating them.

Special Dispatch No. 354: Saudi Government Daily: Jews Use Teenagers' Blood for 'Purim' Pastries - Middle East Media Reseach Institute News, March 13th 2002.
An accurate description of Purim from the BBC.
Kashrut: Jewish Dietary Laws explained at Judaism 101.

March 13, 2002

Who's Who?

The current religious violence in India is, on the whole, not at all funny but the situation has brought about some surreal moments. A Muslim shrine in Srinagar holds a single hair which they believe to be from the beard of the prophet Mohammed. According to at least one Hindu, this is not so. Vinay Katiyar, a member of the Indian parliament and leader of the right-wing Vishwa Hindu Parishad, claims the hair is really from a Hindu holy man Nimnath Baba. He is prepared to go to court to recover the hair, which he claims was appropriated by Muslim invaders. Hindus fight Muslims for strand of holy beard hair - Ananova, March 12th 2002.

But if a single hair can cause so much trouble, what about an entire body? Yuza Asaf was a Muslim 'saint' and his remains are believed to be at the shrine of Rozabal, Kashmir. But an American woman wants to dig them up and subject them to DNA tests as she's convinced that the site is the final resting place of Jesus. Shrine managers are strongly opposed to the planned 'desecration', but she might get her way as she has previously been allowed to dig up a site in Pakistan looking for the remains of Mary. She has not indicated how she plans to get a DNA sample from the Lord God Almighty for comparison. US researcher seeks to exhume 'Jesus Christ' in Kashmir - ABC News Online, March 11th 2002.

March 12, 2002

Jesus in strange places

Forget the holy aubergines or the concrete simulacrum featured in the latest Fortean Times, here's the face of Jesus on a stretch waterproof plaster:

In his hands was a blood stained plastic bandage strip that had been covering a small scrape on the knee of his young niece. When he showed me the blood stain I could hardly believe what I was seeing! The blood stain on the bandage clearly showed the image of Jesus Christ!

They'll even sell you a postcard. Apparition of Jesus - The Vision.

Even though it's a little distorted, the image isn't too bad. These Hubble Space Telescope images offered as proof of the existence of God are much harder to make out, and it would be impolite to accuse the author of special pleading. If you can't see it, it's because you don't believe: this page and it's contents are all biased toward God the creator. Due to variations in personal beliefs, you may or may not see any value in the information.

Spritual eye sight is also required to see the images of Jesus, Mary and angels in these photographs: Christ in the clouds.

Worth a flutter

Bookies William Hill have slashed the odds on proof being found that Nessie exists from 500-1 to 250-1. The change in odds comes after the discovery of a spectacular three and a half minute video of an unidentifiable creature in Loch Ness. The tape was recorded in 2000 by a Glasgow man. William Hill halve odds on Nessie existing, Ananova March 12th 2002.

March 9, 2002

Bargains of the Day: What Would Jesus Eat?

Worried about ordinary, evil chewing gum? Bible Gum is for you!

The main ingredients of Bible Gum consist of little folded cartons, probably the smallest of its kind for any product, containing two tabs of chewing gum . Printed on the inside of the carton is a complete, referenced verse from the King James version of the Bible. When the carton is unfolded, the verse is revealed, for the privilege of the holder.

And just to make you feel really good, Bible Gum is meticulously packaged in a workshop for the disabled in Southern Missouri. But what if you have issues with the mess chewing gum leaves but still want some holy sweeties? What about Testamints? A

High quality line of Mints and Lollipops each embossed with a Cross and all of the packs printed with one of over 100 Scripture verse from the Old or New Testaments. Some verses in Espanol. A great Evangelism tool. Ideal for Churches, Religious Schools, Hospitals, Funeral Homes, Nursing Homes, Vacation Bible Schools, Religious Occasions.

This exciting product is distributed by Halo Enterprises, whose mission is to enhance the lives of people we meet by sharing spiritual refreshment while providing economic opportunity. But hang on, these mints must be evil and Satanic! Presumably the gum is okay, because you're not supposed to swallow it. You see, as St. Paul said in his first Epistle to the Corinthians:

Do you not know that you are a temple of God, and that the spirit of God dwells in you? If any man defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him, for the temple of God is holy, and that is what you are.

And what this means is that the One True Christian Diet is... Breatharianism, plus your own urine. Jesus' Diet for your Sins.

School teaches myths instead of science

Fundamentalist teachers are teaching mythology as scientific fact at a state-funded school in Gateshead. Emmanuel College, one of the Tories' City Technology Colleges, is supposed to be a beacon school with high standards yet young people there are taught that a being known as 'God' made the universe in six days and that this folk tale has more credibility than theories based on observable evidence. A representative for the Department for Education and Skills told The Guardian What schools need to do is teach the national curriculum in an impartial way. Personal doctrines should not override anything that should be taught in the curriculum. Top school's creationists preach value of biblical story over evolution, The Guardian March 9th 2002.

David Icke was wrong after all.

The scientists who declared that the Universe is turquoise have admitted that there was an error in the software and that the Universe is, in fact, magnolia. One of the researchers noted It is embarrassing, but this is science. We're not like politicians. If we make mistakes, we admit them. That's how science works. Universe is off colour - BBC News, March 8th 2002

March 8, 2002

It's a steal

Four notices banning Satan from a Florida town have been nicked. The controversial signs - hollow posts containing a proclomation barring the Devil from Inglis - were put up by mayor Carolyn Risher, but disappeared some time last week. She has vowed to waste more tax dollars putting up new posts, twice the height and anchored in concrete, plus a giant cross. The US Constitution bans such official recognition of any religion. Thieves Swipe Anti-Satan Posts, ABC News n.d.. (This'll only stay up for a week. After that, click on the link to the Crime Blotter archive to find this story).

March 6, 2002

Barking up the wrong tree

Neopagans are being blamed for the disappearance of a rare pedigree dog in London. Rather than assuming that thieves took the Basenji, which went missing last month during a walk in Beckenham Park, the owner has connected the incident with ceremonies going on in the park. The rituals involving fire, candles, stone circles and symbols hung in trees are similar to ones which went on there in the 1970s. The group concerned has apparently built some 'very elaborate' stone circles in the woods. Mystery of rituals in park . This is Local London March 5th 2002.

March 5, 2002

Prince William is the Antichrist and reincarnation of King Arthur!

This has something to do with the current trend for pseudo-celtic nonsense, the freemasons, people dying aged 42 (including Elvis), the Euro and Nostradamus. The summer solstice and solar eclipses are apparently important as well. SECRET IDENTITY OF THE ANTICHRIST: PRINCE WILLIAM / KING ARTHUR / 11:11. THE KNIGHTS TEMPLAR AND MASONIC CONSPIRACY AND IT'S DARK TIES TO THE BLOODLINE OF THE HOLY GRAIL.

Update 30th December 2010: The author of the linked piece is Clinton Ortiz, and it is now all at The Once and Future King: a destiny revealed.

March 4, 2002

Priests, choirboys etc.

Naughty vicar stories seem to be common today. First, a long article in the Toronto Star examines the financial difficulties faced by Catholic Dioceses in the US as a result of payments to victims of sexually abusive priests. Abuse cases costing church millions, Toronto Star March 4th 2002.

In Los Angeles, Cardinal Roger Mahony has ordered up to 12 priests to retire or otherwise leave their ministries. The priests were all involved in past sexual abuses and had received psychological treatment, but none were implicated in recent cases, and several were considered to be fully rehabilitated. L.A. priests ousted over sex abuse cases, Chicago Tribune March 4th 2002.

In St. Louis, two priests have been ousted as part of a new 'Zero tolerance' stance in response to criminal proceedings against a priest alleged to have sexually abused 130 children. Two Priests Removed In St. Louis, CBS News March 3rd 2002.

March 2, 2002


A group of scientists have mapped the effects of meditation with the aid of a group of Buddhist monks. By tracing the path of a radioactive tracer in the bloodstream of a deep meditator, they created some interesting brain scans. Meditation mapped in monks, BBC News March 1st 2002.

March 1, 2002

Where's Freddie?

United States: Notorious fundie homophobe Fred Phelps failed to show up at the Metropolitan Community Church in San Francisco last Sunday after promising to picket the gay-friendly congregation. He had issued press releases to the San Francisco media insisting that he and his cronies from Westboro Community Church in Kansas would be there. His son, the originally-named Fred Phelps Jr, had told the San Francisco Examiner about the theological reasons for picketing the fag church and the funerals of lesbians and gay men, most notoriously that of Matthew Shepherd who was murdered by queerbashers: The Bible preaches hate. You can't have God's love without God's hate.

Gay-haters are a no-showSan Francisco Examiner February 25th 2002.

Star to Stay

A five-pointed star on top of a Suffolk church will stay, despite a local resident's complaint that it is a satanic symbol inappropriate for a Christian building. The church council decided unanimously to take no action, and the rector, Rev. David Streeter, noted the symbol's long Christian heritage. Hedley Griffin, who made the original complaint, was disappointed: what they have done is the equivalent of putting a swastika on top of a synagogue. Five-pointed star to stay on church, East Anglian Daily Times, March 1st 2002.

Family Values

The trial of a woman who claims the devil made her drown her five children has revealed the effects of religious fundametalism on the mentally ill. According to the L.A. Times, Andrea Pia Yates lived in:

a home in which the husband and wife stuck to traditional roles. It was a home in which medicine was frowned upon, school systems were unacceptable and institutional religion was a tool of evil. Doomsday leaflets mailed to the house gave hysterical warnings against demonic influences that threaten young children. I cannot stress how serious the whole thing is: By the time a child is 14 or 15 years old, it's too late, the Perilous Times newsletter said. Yates' husband, Russell 'Rusty' Yates, read aloud from the tract during Thursday's testimony.

She had been receiving counselling, was suffering from catatonic states and psychosis and had attempted suicide several times. Religious Zeal Infused Yates' Lives, Testimony Shows, L.A. Times, March 1st 2002.

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