As far as I can see, Limbaugh is maintaining that liberals are more likely to commit suicide than conservatives.
I thought we'd all agreed that the coalition government proves the point.
RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD MAGAZINE - ISSUE 401 - OUT NOW!
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 09 August 2014 - 10:22 AM
I think the very real danger, as has already been shown in other areas of Europe but I believe is also taking place to a lesser degree (at present) over here, is that uncontested criticism of Israel can so easily slide into anti-Semetism.
Take tonight's BBC report on the renewal of the most recent conflict. No mention of the fact that Israel had requested an extension of the ceasefire but Hamas had refused or that Hamas fired rockets into Israel to break the ceasefire. Because a child was apparently killed (and I say apparently because the numbers are provided by 'Palestinian authorities' without question it would seem whereas everywhere else in the Middle East such numbers would be mentioned with the caveat of 'unconfirmed reports') the whole report portrayed Israel as the aggressor. There was no balance. No offering the possibility that indeed Hamas was using the young and the elderly (since it was only they who were reported injured) as human shields - as many an Islamist has done before - and that Israel might indeed have been targeting specific buildings which they knew to house Hamas terrorists. Israel does have a very good intelligence service when all is said and done. Aside from what anyone believes, that kind of emotive and unbalanced reporting fuels the fire and can easily push what could be considered to be rational criticism into anti-Semetism. The BBC is being wholly irresponsible.
I saw that news report too.
It was presented by Orla Guerin, and I think you have it spot on. It was pure propaganda, designed to elicit a response from the audience to blame Israel as the aggressor and Hamas as the innocent party. Ms Guerin could hardly mention the word 'Israel' without grimacing.
Sadly, it summed up a lot of the BBC's coverage. Or at least the coverage that I've seen.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 09 August 2014 - 10:19 AM
I know where my sympathies lie, with Palestinian people being pogrommed against. I appreciate the historical imperative that makes the Jewish people so adamant that they will never be pushed around again but they are a nation acting under a psychosis they have lost their humanity and destroyed the humanity of those they are oppressing.
They need to talk to each other but those on each side who would talk are sidelined and often assassinated.
The poor Jews and the Palestinians need to find a common cause against the right wing idiots on both sides.
I don't think you understand the meaning of the word 'pogrom'. If you did I don't think you would use it in this context.
The Israeiis have lost their humanity to such an extent that they offer medical treatment to their sworn enemies.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 07 August 2014 - 09:54 PM
Hamas just announced they will resume attacks on Israel.
Hamas knows perfectly well that this will lead to renewed Israeli attacks and more deaths of Palestinian citizens.
That racist organisation places absolutely no value on the lives of the people it purportedly represents.
It would be interesting to know where the houses of the Hamas leaders are located.
I suspect that they will be far away from the sites where rockets are being launched.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 06 August 2014 - 04:25 PM
So it's not enough for you that the palestinians have lost 78% of historic Palestine that they must now lose a good part of the remaining 22% by incorporating the 600,000 illegal Jewish settlers into a future Palestinian state. As for those 20,000 Palestinians being provided with employment by the illegal settlers that is no different than the plantation owners in the US providing employment for the African Americans, both did/do back breaking work for a pittance.
I'm fairly sure that, if they were given the opportunity and freed of Hamas, the Palestinians would prove themselves to be far more pragmatic, businesslike and enterprising than you seem to want to give them credit for. You seem to believe they will be forever doomed to follow Hamas's hateful ideology.
And, as a matter of interest, and given your claims of being scrupulously non-anti-Semitic, why aren't you going on in equal measure about all the land the Jews have had appropriated from them in Europe and the Middle East in the last 100 years.
Shouldn't you be starting threads demanding that all that land is returned to them?
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 06 August 2014 - 03:51 PM
Of course it doesn't matter to you how Hamas came into being because that would involve you having to level some criticism towards Israel something you're not willing to do. just like you're not willing criticise Israel for occupying the west bank, east Jerusalem and the golan heights which you claim as spoils of war for Israel even though the international community condemn it and the UN security council have passed resolutions demanding the removal of the Israeli military and the illegal settlements which you also laughably call for the Palestinians to incorporate into their future state.
I'm perfectly happy to criticise Israel where it deserves criticism.
But I can't criticise it for seeking to defend itself against Hamas rockets, nor from defending itself when it was attacked by its neighbours and securing more defendable borders. I think any country that was defending itself in either of those situations would react in a similar way to the way Israel has reacted.
We have seen it countless times in other theatres of war.
There is nothing 'laughable' about suggesting that the Palestinians, if they are to have a state of their own, should incorporate Jewish settlements into them. Those settlements already provide employment for more than 20,000 Palestinians and if a new state is to have any chance of economic success it will need those Jewish industrial concerns to remain in place and, if possible, to expand.
I would have thought you were a supporter of multiculturalism.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 06 August 2014 - 12:34 PM
Let's get this straight shall we. Being against Zionism is not anti-semitic. Being against Zionism is not to support Hamas. The suggestion of ant-semitism is frankly insulting to anyone who has spent their entire adult life campaigning and fighting (sometimes literally) against racism from all people and against all people. I have friends who are Jewish and entirely opposed to the Zionist project and believe the state of Israel should be abolished. There are many thousands of True Torah Jews who believe the state of Israel should be abolished - indeed they believe the state of Israel is directly opposed to gods will. I despise Zionism and Islamism in equal measure - I DO NOT despise Judaism or Islam, I DO NOT despise Jews or Muslims. This is politics NOT religion.
I don't think anyone would claim that being opposed to Zionism is anti-semitic, for the reasons you outline.
And you are correct to point out that to oppose Zionism is not to support Hamas.
However, it is also true to say that Hamas is an extreme racist organisation that wants to exterminate the Jewish race.
If you read article 22 of its Charter, you'll see it's straight out of the Nazi playbook.
And, despite your being anti-Zionist, the state of Israel was established in 1948 and won't go away. There is no point in wishing it would.
So the Palestinians and Israelis have to find a way of living next to each other.
But that won't happen until Israel believes the rocket attacks on its territory have ended for good.
And I can't believe that the majority of the Palestinians in Gaza want to continue trying to attack their neighbour in that way.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 06 August 2014 - 11:38 AM
How some of these organisations can express solidarity with groups, such as Hamas, which has leaders who believe in the extermination of Jews, whilst supposedly advocating freedom for Palestinians beggars belief... but that's another matter.
I don't think it's another matter, I think it's the heart of the matter.
Hamas is a cancer for the Palestinian people and it needs to be expunged before any real progress is likely to be made.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 05 August 2014 - 08:32 AM
If I didn't know any better that could have been written by mark regev, nothing but Israeli propaganda. I'll ask you what I've asked other apologists of Israel:
Hamas as an organization have only been in existence since 1987 and have only been in power since 2006, what was Israels excuse for occupying gaza for the 20 years before Hamas even existed and the 40 years before Hamas was democratically elected?
Also I'll pose another question to you, there are no Hamas in power in the West Bank and no Hamas rockets and suicide bombers hitting Israel so why does Israel continue to militarily occupy the West Bank and East Jerusalem? Why do the illegal settlements still exist in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem? Why are the current existing illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem expanding? Why are there new illegal settlements separate from the existing ones being approved by Israeli courts in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank?
You would have more credibility if you didn't try to insult people who disagree with you.
If you wish to dispute anything in my previous post, please show why anything I said wasn't true.
The essence of the case against Hamas is that it is an organisation with genocidal aims. Only last Friday on its TV station it broadcast a sermon by one of its approved imams stating that all Jews should be obliterated. Hamas, to give it some credit, doesn't try to hide its aims.
Essentially if you support Hamas you support that point of view.
As far as I am aware, Israel is not bombarding the West Bank, because Hamas is not sending rockets from there into Israel, but only because it isn't in control there.
In relation to the current borders in the region, it's worth remembering that in 1967 Israel was attacked by its neighbours. They lost a war, and from time immemorial those countries that lose wars often lose part of their territories. Border changes and population movements are a fact of history, with the latest example being the Christians who are fleeing Mosul in Iraq.
Israel occupied Sinai and Gaza that were part of Egypt, the West Bank that was part of Jordan and the Golan Heights that were part of Syria.
Since then, it has returned Sinai to Egypt after a peace treaty between the two countries, while Egypt and Jordan seem to have given up their claim to Gaza and the West Bank respectively. Syria still lays claim to the Golan Heights, but Israel is unlikely to return it for strategic reasons.
The Israelis pulled their settlers out of Gaza, but not out of the West Bank. And they won't do so.
It strikes me that the best solution for the region is not a two-state solution, but a three-state one.
If I were a Palestinian I would aim for a new state based on the West Bank that would include the Israeli settlers.
The West Bank and Gaza are not contiguous, so I would aim for a separate city-state in Gaza.
That is certainly unrealistic while Hamas are in town, but it could be a long term proposition.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 16 July 2014 - 04:27 PM
Mr Gove has been a great Education Secretary
If someone had posted that on this forum then I'd be accusing them of trolling. And I doubt I'd be convinced by any excuses of "honest opinion".
The trouble with being the Education Secretary is that you can only really be judged some years after you have left office.
And very often the role of Education Secretary seems to be held by a politician hoping for bigger things who wants to cause as few ripples as possible with the teaching unions.
The only two Education Secretaries in the last 17 years who don't conform to that stereotype are David Blunkett (1997 to 2001) and Gove.
Both of them identified the fact that the education system is letting down working class kids, and both were vilified for their troubles by the National Union of Teachers.
Both of them thoroughly prepared their brief while they were in opposition. Blunkett once famously had to hide in a broom cupboard, even before he took office, to escape enraged NUT members.
The truth is that the Education Secretary is dealing with vested interests that see any changes as a threat to their members' terms and conditions, which is where their priorities lie. The only change they will accept is more money being thrown at them, which is what happened when Gordon Brown came to power. And Brown threw money at everything, creating a financial black hole.
But as long as most middle class parents can afford to buy houses in areas that give them access to schools with a decent intake, they will go along with this, without caring too much about schools in poor neighbourhoods.
That sense of smug satisfaction and a desire not to rock the boat seems apparent on this thread, but in my opinion it just isn't good enough.
Because of my role in our company I receive hundreds of emails from young kids at school in some of the less affluent Rugby League towns telling me they want to write about the game for a living, and asking for work experience. And it's heartbreaking to have to turn them down because they have never been taught even the basics of good English.
I don't know why this is, and why teachers can't instil some decent writing skills into these kids.
I feel strongly about this because I came from a school myself that had kids from a very poor background. I was the only boy in my school year who passed the old eleven-plus, so I can see what low expectations lead to.
Blunkett and Gove, in their own ways, both wanted to do something about this problem, and both tried.
In the meantime we are falling farther and farther behind our rivals when the educational attainments of our kids are measured against them.
And I can't see any other politician on the horizon who is prepared to do anything about it.
Anything for an easy life.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 14 July 2014 - 12:01 PM
The last 10 years of Internet/social media has seen football's growth only explode further. Football being a skill based game, as opposed to collision based, commands most interest in folk. A player flashes a piece of skill it quickly gets millions of views on YouTube...Ronaldinho, Messi, Zidane, Ronaldo...etc etc. Football is top dog because skill is king. A rare moment of skill in Rugby Union came from a dummy pass from O'Driscoll which got over a million views.
This thread is about the culture and image of Rugby League, and it is interesting to compare those elements to association football.
The image you present here of soccer being a game of great skill is widely accepted by most people and is therefore part of that sport's image.
And yet it's a perfect example of the image being divorced from the reality.
Football's great success comes about because the skill quotients of the teams don't necessarily determine the outcome of the game. And that's why a third-world country can take up soccer and within a few years can be challenging the best teams in the world, which simply couldn't happen in Rugby League or in the other major football codes.
Soccer is so successful because it is the least skilful of the football codes, but it manages to give the impression to many people that it is the most skilful.
In the World Cup that has just ended I watched Argentina's first game, after being told that Lionel Messi was the best player in the world, only to find him giving the ball to the opposition virtually every time he had the ball (at least in the first half), and being very easily dispossessed of the ball. If a supposed star Rugby League player had performed like that he would have been crucified by the media and by the fans.
But Messi scored a goal in the second half of that game, so that made him the best player in the world again.
Don't get the impression that I'm having a go at soccer, by the way.
It has succeeded brilliantly, and we have to admire it for that.
I'm sure there are a lot of lessons that Rugby League could learn from it.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 11 July 2014 - 11:50 AM
In my opinion, there is a perception of Rugby League that needs to be addressed before we wring our hands and bemoan the "negative" press the game seems to carry around. It is a class perception that unfortunately, the game has encouraged as part of it's imagery, where the good honest hard working souls who play and watch the game are the "back-bone" of the nation...the salt of the earth. This, from my dealings with RL folk is true...they are (mainly) very honest, true and hardworking folk who rarely look down on anyone, are always welcoming and more than most sports, love a good "debate" about the game. They also support their game with a passion that is admirable and "repel boarders" on a regular basis when an attack is perceived.
Alas, this perceived image is not one that your average member of the public want to aspire to.......nobody wants to be blue collar, they want to make a few bob and climb the social ladder.......and father up the social ladder is where "other sports" sit.
There is nothing wrong with being a "working class" sport.......it's just a case that working class is no longer "good enough" for the majority of the population.
Rugby League used to be Ronnie Corbett and it was fine with that. The Fans were fine with it to and it knew it's place. Now it is Ronnie Barker and John Cleese doesn't like that one bit, so when League makes a mistake, Cleese makes sure that everyone knows it.
An interesting theory that probably deserves some research to test whether you have it right.
I do get the feeling among some middle-class people that they are aspirational, and they don't see Rugby League as an aspirational sport.
One of the great successes of soccer in the last 20 years or so is that they made attending matches an acceptable thing for middle class people to do, whereas before then their constituency was largely working class males.
The financial benefits that have come from that change are obvious.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 11 July 2014 - 10:46 AM
George Galloway speaks strongly for maintaining the United Kingdom.
Posted by Martyn Sadler on 04 July 2014 - 03:06 PM
We don't want cheerleaders. (© Chuckles and his merry gang)
I was watching an interview with Murray Walker on TV last night (the interviewer was Rob Bonet).
Walker explained that he loves motor sport, and when he commentated on it or wrote about it, he wanted other people to love it too, and to appreciate all the good things about it.
I can empathise with that view when it comes to Rugby League, and for that reason I feel angry when people let the sport down and write accordingly in League Express.
But I would never allow the sport as a whole to be trashed in my name, whether in League Express or in any other medium.
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