December 2009 Archives

December 19, 2009

A correction

Matthew Sephton has mailed to point out an error in our piece about homophobe Richard Carvath:

Richard Carvath is NOT trying to become the Conservative PPC for Salford and Eccles. In fact, he has NOTHING to do with the Conservative Party. He has stated his intention to stand in the constituency as an Independent however.

December 18, 2009

New York nuke date changed (again)

The Lord's Witnesses have been using Bible codes to predict a terrorist nuke on New York for some time now, the most recent missed date having been December 15th or 16th. Sometime overnight, their site was changed and the prophecy now reads:

We now predict a terrorist attack using a form of fire from the heaven that we cannot conclusively determine, but we think may be nuclear. The US will be hit with a with a weapon producing a mushroom cloud rising from the sea (1Kings18), hitting midtown Westide Manhattan, near the Hudson river on 2009Chislev28 (December19/20).

We are warning you about this, so that when it happens you know that God has spoken of this event beforehand and in fact will save us from nuclear annihilation in the near future...

Still not convinced I can avoid going there in February.

Marilyn Agee has still not updated her site after her most recent failed prediction.

December 17, 2009

Paging New York

Are you still there? I promised to update the readers today, but there's nothing on the BBC News website about the terrorist nuke that was predicted. It couldn't be that the merchants of doom were wrong (again), could it? And like Marilyn Agee, the Lord's Witnesses have yet to update their site.

December 16, 2009

Pull the other one, it has sleigh bells on.

United States: Newspapers usually only prank their readers on April 1st, but the Arkansas Sunday Post (bringing you the biggest stories for the tiniest minds, every Sunday!) appears to be engaging in a bit of festive tomfoolery. I mean, there is no way on earth this story can be true, is there?

Arkansas church ban popular carol promoting homosexuality. Protests grow.

The church in question is Saint Catherine and Angelic Martyrs in Puftville, the very name of the town making the story suspicious, but what makes it really doubtful is the apt name given to the pastor: Randy Pillock!

Explaining his decision, he points out, The second verse is the problematic part. The first line ‘Don we now our gay apparel’ is clearly incongruent with our values. The outrage doesn’t stop there for Pastor Pillock who explains that the third verse is an homage to a ‘Blazing Yule.’

He is not alone in his views though. Church stalwart, Ted Trotter agrees, This carol has been part of the gay agenda for years and it really is time to put a stop to it. It’s unbelievable that we have been singing it unnoticed for all these years.

Nice try.

Gay carol ban: No more Deck the HallsArkansas Sunday Post, 16th December 2009 (not a Sunday!)

December 15, 2009

Rapture/Armageddon update

There have been a number of forecasts that the Rapture would occur sometime about now. Perhaps Marilyn Agee was finally right, as as of now, her web site still reads Surely, the First-Trump Rapture must take place this year, HOPEFULLY DEC. 13, 2009.

A few days ago, PZ notice a rapture prediction we'd missed, suggesting the world would end on 14th December - i.e. yesterday. Well, today I checked the site to which he linked, and what do you think it says?

rapture-yule.png

Obviously not as Elect as Marilyn, or simply quicker to cover up his cock-ups.

We will update on the Lord's Witnesses' prediction that New York will be nuked today or tomorrow on the day after tomorrow!

Bigoted cunt round-up

The Court of Appeal has ruled that a Christian was not discriminated against when she was sacked for refusing to do her job. Lilian Ladele had claimed that she was unfairly dismissed for refusing to carry out civil partnerships, a fundamental part of the registrar's job. She plans to whine to a higher court. This is the second recent case where someone claiming to be Christian has insisted that it is religious discrimination to make them obey the law from which they themselves are trying to benefit. Only two weeks ago, former counsellor Gary McFarlane lost his appeal against being sacked for refusing to do his job.

Perhaps they should enlist the help of Richard Carvath, who is trying to become a Tory prospective parliamentary candidate for Salford and Eccles. He's started his campaign for the nomination by engaging in positive dialogue with one of his competitors with whom he disagrees, in an attempt to find common ground. No, he hasn't. He called Matthew Sephton a homosexual pervert and describes a blog post about the LGBTory group's trip to Manchester Pride as heavy with pro homosexual pervert content. I never knew Manchester Pride was that good! Must pop along one year.

A self-styled pro-heterosexual, he describes his platform thus:

If elected he vows to; work for a complete ban on homosexuals fostering or adopting children, for the abolition of civil partnerships, for the re-criminalisation of the act of buggery, for the restoration of ‘Section 28’, and for the criminalisation of public homosexual behaviour and the public promotion of homosexuality.

Sounds to me like the only place he can get any is the local gents' loo.

Carvath has already acquired a non-fan club on Facebook. Unfortunately, some people have decided to encourage his persecution complex by reporting him to the police for hate speech, rather than just laughing at the silly monkey throwing his fæces all over his own bed.

Anti-gay registrar loses case in Court of AppealEkklesia, 15th December 2009; Tory chair branded pervert by election competitorPink Paper, 11th December 2009 (I do hope that last headline is not literal!).

December 8, 2009

End of the World 2009 checklist

Around this time of year, I start to put together the "Annual End of World" post, but I figured it would be a good idea to check out how the predictions for 2009 are doing.

December 31st 2008 - January 1st 2009: There will be a dual terrorist attack on the US and the UK taking the form of fire from the heavens and a rising mushroom cloud... The US arm of the attack will hit Westside Midtown Manhattan producing a man made mushroom cloud rising from the Hudson river (Lord's Witnesses). Well, as we know, the only thing to hit the Hudson at any time close to that was an A320, successfully ditched by Captain Chesley Sullenberger after a bird strike on January 16th. So that's a miss then? Not so fast - the Lord's Witnesses are now predicting something very similar for December 15th or 16th this year: We now predict a terrorist attack using a form of fire from the heaven that we cannot conclusively determine, but we think may be nuclear. The US will be hit with a with a weapon producing a mushroom cloud rising from the sea (1Kings18), hitting midtown Westide Manhattan, near the Hudson river on 2009Chislev24 (December15/16). I somehow suspect that there is no hope that my planned trip to New York in February will be called off, alas, and they provide no news on their predicted attack on the UK.

20th January 2009: terrorist attack on Washington DC during the presidential inauguration after Bush launches attack on Iran (Satan's Rapture). I watched the inauguration in the telly, and there was no sign of any bombs or similar.

January 2009: Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Luxembourg, Belgium, and all of the Netherlands will be completely inundated (Nostradamus and the New Prophecy Almanacs). Oslo, Copenhagen and Amsterdam seemed no wetter than usual during my visits this year, and did not appear to be recovering from any flooding.

March 2009: Queen Elizabeth II will pass away peacefully in her sleep and the royal succession shall pass to Prince Charles (Nostradamus and the New Prophecy Almanacs). Predicting that an elderly woman will die would seem to be an easy option, but so far she is continuing to prove that she is her mother's daughter. The same source also predicted a Russian invasion of Germany in August, of which there was no sign.

29th May 2009: I'M HOPING FOR THE RAPTURE BETWEEN NOW AND PENTECOST; HOW COULD IT BE LATER THAN THAT? (Marilyn Agee). Easily, it seems, but she is still optimistic on her new site. In a note posted on the 6th December this year, she says Surely, the First-Trump Rapture must take place this year, HOPEFULLY DEC. 13, 2009, because there is no other harvest until the end of the last five years of the Tribulation. We'll know within the week, anyway.

December 4, 2009

Annual "have I got a bargain for you" post

It's a week or so to go to Channukah, so it's time for our regular visit to Jewish Source to see what bargains they have on offer. First up is a nifty Menorah Hat. At least they admit it's silly:

menorah-hat.jpg
Oh, lighten up! Okay, maybe it's a little over-the-top, but we think it adds to the fun of the holiday. Made for adult (but young at heart) sized heads, though there is an elastic cincher with Velcro closure so the hat can be made smaller.

If barkingly inappropriate is more your style, there's always this Noah's Ark menorah. No, the story of Noah has no connection with Channukah whatsoever.

Or how about a snowglobe? That's nice and seasonal. This Draydel Man Musical Water Globe plays I Have a Little Draydel, of course.

December 3, 2009

Tales Inside School: Condoms Cause AIDS

Australia: It seems an unofficial front for the Catholic Church's contraception disinformation campaign has been sleazing its way through regional New South Wales state school spreading its propaganda about condoms being ineffective in preventing HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.

Real Choices Australia operates the program, Choices Decisions Outcomes, mainly in government schools across Australia. One of its directors and spokeswoman, Debbie Garratt, has links to the Catholic Church and has worked with anti-abortion groups.

The program is used at Ulladulla High School. Teams are trying to promote it in the Newcastle, Kempsey, Macksville, Port Macquarie and Taree regions. On the Choices Decisions Outcomes' website, students are warned that condoms are not 100 per cent effective in stopping sexually transmitted infections. It highlights that children who engage in sexual activity are flirting with danger.The website goes on to say there is no scientific evidence that condoms prevent the transmission of most sexually transmitted diseases.

December 1, 2009

World AIDS Day roundup

In the UK, there is still some stigma attached to HIV/AIDS, but it's nothing like the scale we see in other parts of the world. HelpAge International, noting an increase in HIV infection amongst older heterosexual couples in sub-Saharan Africa, draws our attention to what that stigma can mean:

In Tanzania, older women are accused of witchcraft if a member of their family has HIV. These women are ostracised from their communities and subjected to violence and even death.

Superstition still plays a part in shaping people's attitudes to the condition, and has provided some novel preventatives and "cures". In her entry to the The Guardian International Development Journalism Competition, Kirsty Taylor looked at the situation in Kenya:

I went to very many herbalists to try and find a cure, but they didn't know what was wrong with me, [Damaris Cagina] explains. They told me my mother-in-law had bewitched me. They told me to buy special fabric - a white cloth with red stripes - and to put soil in a basket to stop the spell. I tried it all but nothing helped. It was only after very many visits to herbalists that I decided to come to hospital.

Cagina is one of the estimated 1.4 million people living with HIV/Aids in Kenya today. But like many of them, she first refused tests to discover her status, viewing a positive result as an immediate death sentence and spiritual curse.

The role of religion in promoting superstition, stigmatising people with HIV/AIDS and getting in the way of preventative efforts is well-known, and doesn't just affect Africa. Even in the relatively godless UK, it's regarded as a problem.

Religions are often credited as the means by which moral values, such as care for others, are reinforced and passed on.

But some charities and anti-HIV groups claim religion is helping to breed the very stigma that the UN says has helped give the UK twice as many new cases of infection each year as any other country in western Europe....

In denouncing the behaviour that allows the virus to spread, religious leaders sometimes drive HIV-positive people underground.

That same story contains an interesting profile of an HIV-positive imam, originally from the Ivory Coast, but now resident in the UK, and afraid to let his family know of his condition because he would be ostracised. Another African Muslim explained the problem from his point of view:

Along with a conservative African culture, religion has played a significant role in creating this taboo. Ismael is 40 and originally from Sudan.

The imams don't talk too much about it, but they start off by saying 'this is a taboo, this is a sin, a punishment from Allah'.

"When you disclose it, straight away they think you are gay, or maybe you got it from a prostitute or you did something bad and Allah is punishing you. That is why it has to be kept secret.

Over in Indonesia, we see a fine example of exactly that problem:

The image of a giant condom draped in Indonesia's national red and white colors towered over the opening ceremonies of National Condom Week in Jakarta. To coincide with World AIDS Day, the National AIDS Commission crafted the message, Use Condoms, Celebrate Life. But some hardline religious groups don't believe condom use should be promoted, let alone celebrated.

The Islamic group Hizbut Tahrir held banners during a demonstration on Sunday aimed at urging the government to end programs that provide free condoms to male and female sex workers, based on the argument that condoms encourage sex outside of marriage.

Because humans always need to be encouraged to have sex, right?

Rise in HIV and AIDS cases among older AfricansHelpAge International, 1st December 2009; Truth is the first casualtyThe Guardian, 25th November 2009; Imam aims to break Aids tabooBBC News, 1st December 2009; Condom friction in pious IndonesiaAsia Times, 1st December 2009.

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This page is an archive of entries from December 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

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