Society's ChildS


Best of the Web: Fundamentalism Kills

mourners attack Norway
© AP / Frank AugsteinPeople embrace and mourn at the massive flower field laid in memory of victims of Friday’s twin attacks in Norway.
The gravest threat we face from terrorism, as the killings in Norway by Anders Behring Breivik underscore, comes not from the Islamic world but the radical Christian right and the secular fundamentalists who propagate the bigoted, hateful caricatures of observant Muslims and those defined as our internal enemies. The caricature and fear are spread as diligently by the Christian right as they are by atheists such as Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens. Our religious and secular fundamentalists all peddle the same racist filth and intolerance that infected Breivik. This filth has poisoned and degraded our civil discourse. The looming economic and environmental collapse will provide sparks and tinder to transform this coarse language of fundamentalist hatred into, I fear, the murderous rampages experienced by Norway. I worry more about the Anders Breiviks than the Mohammed Attas.

The battle under way in America is not between religion and science. It is not between those who embrace the rational and those who believe in biblical myth. It is not between Western civilization and Islam. The blustering televangelists and the New Atheists, the television pundits and our vaunted Middle East specialists and experts, are all part of our vast, simplistic culture of mindless entertainment. They are in show business. They cannot afford complexity. Religion and science, facts and lies, truth and fiction, are the least of their concerns. They trade insults and clichés like cartoon characters. They don masks. One wears the mask of religion. One wears the mask of science. One wears the mask of journalism. One wears the mask of the terrorism expert. They jab back and forth in predictable sound bites. It is a sterile and useless debate between bizarre subsets of American culture. Some use the scientific theory of evolution to explain the behavior and rules for complex social and political systems, and others insist that the six-day creation story in Genesis is a factual account. The danger we face is not in the quarrel between religion advocates and evolution advocates, but in the widespread mental habit of fundamentalism itself.

Comment: Mr. Hedge's analysis of the problem of fundamentalism (regardless of its particular form) is correct. However, he is evidently unaware of the role that psychopaths play in these situation. Once an ideology, no matter how benign and well-intentioned its beginnings, has been twisted from within by these parasites on society, there can only be one outcome: its use as a means of domination.

The seminal book, Political Ponerology, outlines the means and methods by which this is accomplished.


Mental Disorder Behind Many Nose Job Patients

© Raven3k | sxc.huMany patients who were highly concerned about their appearance had only minor defects or none, the study authors said.

Many of the people who get nose jobs have a mental illness in which they obsess over a mostly imaginary bodily flaw, a new Belgian study suggests.

People with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) can't stop obsessing over their appearance, and they have an exaggerated perception of a flaw that is either minor or completely imagined. This excessive preoccupation can get in the way of daily activities, and some BDD sufferers refuse to leave their homes for fear that others will see their flaw.

Over a period of 16 months, researchers from the University Hospitals Leuven in Belgium distributed BDD questionnaires and other surveys to 266 patients seeking rhinoplasty. Twenty percent of the patients had already undergone a previous rhinoplasty.

The study results suggested that 33 percent of the patients had moderate to severe symptoms of BDD. The figure rose to 43 percent among patients who were seeking rhinoplasty solely for aesthetic reasons without any functional goals, such as fixing a deviated septum.

Star of David

Jenin Freedom Theatre raided in the middle of the night by Israeli military

Freedom Theatre
© Emily SmithDamage to the Freedom Theatre
The following press release was sent out by the Freedom Theatre in Jenin Refugee Camp:

Special Forces of the Israeli Army attacked the Freedom Theatre in Jenin Refugee Camp at approximately 03:30 this morning. Ahmad Nasser Matahen, a night guard and technician student at the theatre woke up by heavy blocks of stone being hurled at the entrance of the theatre.

As he opened the door he found masked and heavily armed Israeli Special Forces around the theatre. Ahmed says that the army threw heavy blocks of stone at the theatre, "they told me to open the door to the theatre. They told me to raise my hands and forced me to take my pants down. I thought my time had come, that they would kill me. My brother that was with me was handcuffed."


US: Police beat and taser 'gentle' mentally-ill homeless man to death

A shocking video has been released allegedly showing police officers tasering and beating a homeless man to death who they claim was resisting arrest.

Though the video is not clear, eye witnesses say the homeless man - Kelly Thomas, 37 - was unable to put up any resistance and was lying on the ground on his front when the attack took place on July 5.

His screams and cries for his father can be heard amid the tasering noise.
© ABCDead: Mentally ill homeless man Kelly Thomas, 37, was beaten and tasered to death by police for allegedly 'resisting arrest'


US, New York: One-handed former boxer sues TSA for denying him employment and saying he's unfit to work

© James Keivom/NewsMichael Constantino defeated Kareem Delesline in the Golden Gloves 178 Novice in 2001.
A former Queens boxer is fighting to knock out a federal ruling that he can't work as an airport screener because he was born with only one hand.

Michael Constantino, 32, insists he's perfectly capable of working as a screener for the Transportation Security Administration.

"Anyone that knows me knows it's ridiculous for them to say I can't open luggage," Constantino told the Daily News. "I've fought in the Golden Gloves. I work out with former world champions. Opening luggage would be pretty easy for me."

After a medical examination, the TSA determined Constantino couldn't perform the job safely or efficiently.

Constantino, of Whitestone, has filed a formal complaint with the TSA. His lawyer, Jonathan Bell, is confident the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission will reverse the TSA's decision and order the agency to pay for lost wages.

Heart - Black

UK: Pole Dancing Class For 7-Year-Olds Slammed

Family campaigners have blasted a British fitness group for teaching pole dancing to girls aged seven -- and putting pictures of them on the internet.

The photos show youngsters upside down on poles dressed in shorts, crop tops and vests.

Parents must agree before the images, taken at JLN Pole Fitness in Bolton, northern England, are posted on Facebook.

But a spokesman for Christian charity the Mothers' Union told The Sun , "Children are being targeted with an activity that's part of a male club culture which objectifies women."


Rachel Maddow, MSNBC sued for defamation

Rachel Maddow
© MSNBCRachel Maddow
'Left-wing television commentators must be made to respect ... the law'

A lawsuit seeking in excess of $50 million has been prepared against MSNBC and its talk-show entertainer Rachel Maddow over statements she made about a Minnesota-based ministry.

Word of the development comes in an announcement from officials with the YouCanRunButYouCannotHideInternational ministry run by former rock artist Bradlee Dean.

The attorney handling the case is Larry Klayman, the founder of Judicial Watch and now of Freedom Watch, who said money is not the issue.

"This case is filed as a matter of principle," he said. "We need more Bradlee Deans in the world and hateful left wing television commentators must be made to respect not only his mission but the law."

The team announced a news conference tomorrow at the Midtown Executive Club in New York to respond to reporters' questions about the dispute.


US: Alabama county readies for possible record bankruptcy

© UnknownBirmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama -- Alabama's largest county is laying the groundwork for filing what would be the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history, over a more than $3 billion debt for its sewer system.

The Jefferson County Commission approved resolutions Tuesday to hire prominent bankruptcy lawyers and to sell bonds later in case money is needed to emerge from bankruptcy.

Jefferson is Alabama's most populous county and seat of Birmingham. It's been trying for three years to avoid filing bankruptcy over debt payments it can no longer afford.

Two of the five commissioners say there's an 80 percent chance the county will file bankruptcy. The vote could come at a meeting scheduled for Thursday in Birmingham.


Christian Jihad? Why We Should Worry About Right-Wing Terror Attacks Like Norway's in the US


The Norwegian police on Saturday charged a 32-year-old man, whom they identified as a Christian fundamentalist with right-wing connections, over the bombing of a government center and a shooting attack on a nearby island that together left at least 91 people dead.

In my new book Sex, Mom and God I predicted just such an action. I predicted that right wing Christians will unleash terror here in America too. I predict that they will copy Islamic extremists, and may eventually even make common cause with them.

There is a growing movement in America that equates godliness with hatred of our government in fact hatred of our country as fallen and evil because we allow women choice, gays to marry, have a social safety net, and allow immigration from other cultures and non-white races.


US: Jared Loughner to be forced to take anti-psychotic medication

Jared Loughner
© AP Photo/Pima County Sheriff's Dept. via The Arizona RepublicIn this Jan. 8, 2011 file photo released by the Pima County Sheriff's Office shows shooting suspect Jared Loughner.
Bizarre and suicidal actions of Arizona shooting suspect Jared Lee Loughner have pushed a federal appeals panel to reverse an earlier decision and allow authorities to force him to take anti-psychotic medication.

The three-judge panel for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals based in San Francisco had ruled on July 12 that Loughner can refuse anti-psychotic medication.

But since that ruling, Loughner, who has been diagnosed as schizophrenic, has deteriorated, prosecutors said.

He's had screaming and crying fits that last hours, he has harmed himself and claims that the radio was inserting thoughts into his head, prosecutors said.

Loughner has also expressed "regret for the circumstances that led to his arrest," prosecutors wrote in court documents.