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Archive for the ‘Children’ Category

No Credible Media

I don’t know what to call this, but I’ll start with the title “No Credible Media”, because it seems to me that the events of this week have really shot any remaining pretense of credibility on the part of the non-conservative media.

But the manner in which they’ve done it is jaw-dropping. Let’s review.

…but before that, why not go back a step. Because it hasn’t been a good few days.

First, the media gushed over the new Gillette ad… while everyone else knows full well that they just slashed their market share.

Then, Buzzfeed told a big lie to say that Trump was going down (isn’t he always?) and the rest of the media followed suit. Only, this time they got called out.

screen-shot-2019-01-18-at-22.39.10[1]

And in between we had the usual nonsense such as this and this.

Then we arrived at the March for Life.

Naturally, it wasn’t covered. It’s a massive march that happens every year, and you never, ever read about it in the media or see it on the news. And frankly in NZ, that’s fine – it’s a US story. But when it’s not even reported in the USA where it happened and you start to see the problem.

But that wasn’t enough, oh no.

Now we have the truly outrageous, horrible story of what Kant called radical evil. A white, male, Catholic teen who had been to the pro-life march and was wearing a MAGA hat smirked at an Indian Elder who was beating a drum in his face while clad in Native garb (but white Western eyeglasses). It took place near the Lincoln Memorial Friday just after the pro-life March.

And that’s all that happened. A kid smiled in the face of an old Indian who walked right up to him. Smiled – even smirked*. That’s what the video showed. The one I first saw was 61 seconds and that’s all they did – the boy smiled awkwardly, and the Indian chanted and banged his drum.

But the media were quick to jump on board.

“The behavior shown in that video is just a snapshot of what indigenous people have faced and are continuing to face,” Buffalo said.

She said she hoped it would lead to some kind of meeting with the students to provide education on issues facing Native Americans.

The videos prompted a torrent of outrage online. Actress and activist Alyssa Milano tweeted that the footage “brought me to tears,” while actor Chris Evans tweeted that the students’ actions were “appalling” and “shameful.”

Now, that’s from the NZ Herald.

I have to say, I saw this story come up on Saturday night. I had one response – “well, I guess they finally found some”. I honestly thought the media had landed a big fish – a group of racist Trump-supporting boys beating up an elderly man of colour**. So often they claimed to have found a group of pro-Trump bullies, but real instances have proven only too rare.

But as I said, my glace at the story gave me the distinct impression that the boys had tormented this poor man, taken his had, abused him to his face, sworn at him and generally thrown racist remarks.

Boy, I should have paid more attention. And I wasn’t alone.

(This one’s a funny story actually. Because he didn’t like it when people returned the sentiment.)

Of course, the pile on was completely immoral so Kathy Griffin was in like a shot.

I was looking for more, but to be honest a lot of stuff is deleted now. Including one promoting the idea of putting the kids in a wood-chipper. (But it was a joke you know)

A lot of people tried to make it about Catholics. So the Washington Post piled on that too. Because if you’re trying to kill democracy in darkness, you have to take the church too.

This guy thought it would be funny to make the kids look like KKK members. You know, because they smiled at a guy.

So what actually happened?

1. The kids are waiting for a bus.
2. Black radicals begin berating the kids. The students are called all sorts of vile names. The activists tell one black high school student that his classmates will “steal his organs.” What ITF? This goes on for over an HOUR.
3. Native American activists show up. …
5. The Native American activists, …wade in. THEY approach the kids.
6. The Native American activists start berating the kids. “You stole this land. This ain’t your land. Go back to Europe!”
7. Inexplicably, one activist, Nathan Phillips, walks up to a kid and begins banging a drum in HIS FACE. …
8. The kid, not knowing what to make of it, stands there. He smiles. [Some of the other kids think he’s on their side and start dancing to the beat]

This is all on video. All of it. But of course, it wasn’t on the video people saw first.

9. Leftists begin posting small video clips and crafting a narrative that a bunch of MAGA hat wearing teenagers mocked a Native American who was simply minding his own business. [excluding sound, removing more of the context remaining]

11. Media types post vile images. Certain blue check marks call for the kids to be shot on site.

Many of those are still online, though some have been withdrawn. Few have apologized, though some have.

13. Despite the narrative being completely debunked and rejected, leftist news organizations are still running with the story. “White MAGA hat racists assault Native American.”

Side note: NZ media coverage

Remember when it was all on video? Well, people started watching that video. And word got out quickly that the entire story was not what it seemed.

I first saw those stories on Monday Morning, around 8:30.

At 1pm, I logged into Facebook to see if the NZ news had withdrawn. The first two stories I saw were two different outlets, pushing the origional angle, and those stories were marked 3 hours old.

But let’s have a look at NZ Herald’s coverage.

20 Jan, 2019 12:15pm Native American drummer speaks on the teens who surrounded him wearing MAGA hats

20 Jan, 2019 5:25pm The Latest: Man says students wound up singing with him

20 Jan, 2019 5:45pm Students in ‘MAGA’ hats mock Native American after rally

21 Jan, 2019 8:30pm The Latest: Teen in video says he sought to calm tension

21 Jan, 2019 8:33am Mocking students ‘performed the haka’, says Native American witness

22 Jan, 2019 4:15pm 3 groups; many videos; many interpretations of DC encounter

21 Jan, 2019 4:27pm Stare-down between white teen and Native American on National Mall comes into focus

21 Jan, 2019 4:50pm Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

That’s 8 stories. 3 of which were filed before the story began to fall apart.

Stuff’s coverage.

14:15, Jan 20 2019 Students in ‘MAGA’ hats mock and jeer at Native Americans at rally …

11:31, Jan 21 2019 Students at US rally who mocked Native Americans also did the haka

13:54, Jan 21 2019 Videos show what really happened in confrontation between US …

05:00, Jan 22 2019 The smirking schoolboy and the hardly-a-haka | Stuff.co.nz

07:51, Jan 22 2019 Teen in US stare-down with Native American speaks | Stuff.co.nz

(Undated?) What happened at US rally? | Stuff.co.nz

I may analyse these further at a later date. Interestingly, I was unable to find anything on TVNZ’s search function.

Student’s Statement

Nick Sandmann, the student in the center of the hate mob, released this statement. This post is pretty long, so I’m not including it all here. But you can read the entire thing on the link.

I am the student in the video who was confronted by the Native American protestor. I arrived at the Lincoln Memorial at 4:30 p.m. I was told to be there by 5:30 p.m., when our busses were due to leave Washington for the trip back to Kentucky. We had been attending the March for Life rally, and then had split up into small groups to do sightseeing.

I’ve been told by some people that the boys did wrong by not walking away. The problem was, they were meeting there. They had nowhere to go where these crazy people would not follow them.

I believed that by remaining motionless and calm, I was helping to diffuse the situation. I realized everyone had cameras and that perhaps a group of adults was trying to provoke a group of teenagers into a larger conflict. I said a silent prayer that the situation would not get out of hand.
During the period of the drumming, a member of the protestor’s entourage began yelling at a fellow student that we “stole our land” and that we should “go back to Europe.” I heard one of my fellow students begin to respond. I motioned to my classmate and tried to get him to stop engaging with the protestor, as I was still in the mindset that we needed to calm down tensions.
I never felt like I was blocking the Native American protestor. He did not make any attempt to go around me. It was clear to me that he had singled me out for a confrontation, although I am not sure why.
The engagement ended when one of our teachers told me the busses had arrived and it was time to go. I obeyed my teacher and simply walked to the busses. At that moment, I thought I had diffused the situation by remaining calm, and I was thankful nothing physical had occurred.
I never understood why either of the two groups of protestors were engaging with us, or exactly what they were protesting at the Lincoln Memorial. We were simply there to meet a bus, not become central players in a media spectacle. This is the first time in my life I’ve ever encountered any sort of public protest, let alone this kind of confrontation or demonstration.

 

So what we have are some young boys who were aproached by some crazy cultists, and then a native american activist stepped in and used the chaos to… well, act strangely.

This was then picked up by activists, and the media, edited and cast as some sort of mean nasty bullying.

And an online rage mob ensured. A mob that took in large parts of the media, and even many conservatives. Then, a counter-narrative was published, with the complete video, which showed the boys to be the victims, not the aggressors.

This one has really gotten under my skin. I’ve seen some pretty bizare statements.

  • “If my kids did that I’d…” – so if your kid stood and smiled when provoked, you’d disown them?!?
  • “The kids should have moved away – that’s the christian thing” – no, actually it’s not. The group was too large, and there actually wasn’t that much concern at the time. Remember, they were approached. They thought they’d managed to avoid a confrontation, because they had.
  • “KKK” – whatever.
  • “The Native American went in to calm down the situation” – from the first Herald link above ” said he felt threatened by the teens and that they suddenly swarmed around him” I guess he changed his tune when the video came out and that was a proven lie.

I have a real problem this this. This was one of the nastiest mobs we’ve ever seen. And it wasn’t against bullies. It wasn’t even against adults. At it’s core, it was against a kid who smiled at a weird, hypocritical nutcase activist with brown skin. And it was 100% egged on by the media, and reporters. They took sides early, a position that is only emphasised by the complete lack of reporting on the original, massive protest.

I can’t emphasise how much the media have screwed up at this point. But that’s another day I guess.  I’m going to do more posts, because this one has become something of a hot mess. But I want this stake in the ground to start with.

Some thoughts to end on.

First, twitter has not acquitted itself well. But that’s not new.

(George Zimmerman would like to have a conversation with you, Tim.)

Second, the crazy cultists got away with far more than the high school kids did, and their identities are still mostly unknown and unexposed.

* I’m not the greatest at reading emotions, but it always seems to me that the difference between a smile and a smirk is the opinion of the observer.

** Words cannot express how stupid it is that “coloured” has come back “in”, having been derided as racist most of my life. But I need to express the idea so I’m forced to use it.

More reading: Radical evil, and the online lynching of a kid from Kentucky

When the Press Sees Red

But there were evil people, and they were called innocent

A few months ago, an anti-smacker made some comments on this blog. Pondering his comments, something was bothering me about  his view of the Riding crop case.

The question that the anti-smackers have always asked is effectively “how do guilty people get called innocent” – that is, “how do child abusers get away with it”. The answer was “because the law is bad”.

But last one night I realised that the flip side is actually a much more serious question: why are people who were declared innocent get called guilty? What basis has the anti-smacking lobby used to question verdicts delivered after careful deliberation of all the evidence?

So I did some research. And I believe I’ve discovered something very interesting about the riding crop case.

(more…)

Cost of having a child

You hear a lot of figures thrown around about how expensive it is to raise a child.

Here’s a dissenting view.

Many modern sources you look to will not give you the impression that having a baby is affordable. For example, Deborah Pike Olsen writes from the website, babycenter.com, “You’ll spend almost $10,000 on your baby’s first year, according to the thousands of moms who took BabyCenter’s exclusive survey.” On the CanadianFinanceBlog.com Tom Drake provides a “reasonable expectation” of the costs the first year as $11,025. His breakdown is Food: $1646, Clothing: $1879, Health Care: $154, Child Care: $4,990, Shelter, Furnishings, Household Operations: 2,356.

Straight away, you can tell where the savings are going to come from!

One thing many new moms don’t account for (and how can you?) is the utter generosity of everyone around you when you’re going to have a baby! It’s amazing. People will ask what you need, will drop off baby clothes and equipment, will hold surprise baby showers and elderly neighbours you’ve never even talked to will knit blankets and booties for your little one. Babies in the womb and out seem to emit some sort of compulsion field that causes everyone around them to want to give something. Now this compulsion also affects the mother, but she should try to restrain herself a little bit from buying, because the deluge of gifts will come from all sides and she most likely will have more than she needs.

It really helps if you’re part of a church community too.

 

Section 59 is about reasonable force

Over at Mac Doctor’s, there’s a bit of discussion about Section 59.

I focus on part of a reply I made there:

This has been caused by the law which made beating children (with love or otherwise) illegal.

No, it made reasonable force illegal. REASONABLE force.

It seems you can’t argue on this without lying.

To which “Judge Holden” replies:

You can argue semantics all you like guy, and shriek liar when you don’t like the truth. It is what it is, riding crops and all.

Now he is of course referring to the infamous riding crop case.

The boy was asked to assist his stepfather to get some firewood. He refused.Apparently he did not respond well to the man’s encouragement to help. Instead he picked up a baseball bat and swung it full force at his stepdad’s head screaming that he would give him permanent head injuries. Fortunately the man was able to block the blow and disarm the boy. If he had not seen the baseball bat coming, the consequences could have been dire, as the impact to his head could have seriously maimed or even killed the man because he has a closed head injury from an accident some years ago.

So his mother disciplined hom with a riding crop because she couldn’t find anything else. Not a horse whip. A horse whip conjures up visions of a long stock type whip, where a riding crop is a small item, about 18 inches long and is designed to give a short sharp sting with no seen physical effects.

The discipline was controlled, over with very quickly and was very effective, according to the mother. Afterwards the boy gave his mother a hug and apologised for swinging the baseball bat and threatening his stepfather.

The special education services (SES) worke at the boy’s school noticed a change in the boys behaviour at school and asked why there was such a positive change His mother told him about the disciplining. The SES worker told the boys mother that she was not allowed to discipline in this manner, that it was against the law even to smack – which of course is rubbish.

Readers interested can go read the whole story, should they wish.

But here’s the point:

  1. The boy was accused of little short of attempted murder
  2. The boy was punished with an instrument which is basically the same as the time-honored cane. (Actually I can testify from personal experience that the cane hurts more.)
  3. This worked, where nothing else had

From these facts, it’s not hard to see how the jury found the mother not guilty. It’s also not hard to see how easy it was to whip up such hysteria about the case.

But let’s put that aside, and assume that this mother did not, as Judge Holden tells us, use reasonable force (in the circumstances).

(If you read about this case, the police made no reply to the defense, so there is an argument to be made that this case fell through by a poor prosecution.)

Given that you have two options:

  1. The jury got it wrong.
  2. The jury got it right.

If the jury got it wrong, and the force was in fact unreasonable, then there is no need to change the law, and this case is not a demonstration of anything other than police incompetence.

If the jury got it right then we have a case of force that was “reasonable in the circumstances”, yet was also excessive. That is a contradiction in terms*.

It is also the case for the law change to section 59.

In order to “stop abuse” we have declared reasonable actions illegal.

And that nonsense ladies and gentlemen, is now our law.

 

—————-

*One might ask how the Perfect Parent Lobby coped with such a contradiction. Well, that’s simple: they spoke about “reasonable force” as something that allowed abuse. So people began to think about reasonable force not as force that is reasonable, but like those labels you see in the supermarket that say “Real Juce” – just a label, divorced from it’s meaning.

This is of course, how Judge Holden thinks. He can’t refute the words, so has to reference the case to “prove” the words meant something they never did and never will.

Every New Zealander needs to watch this video

It’s very clear that the smacking law, and the attitude that it has encouraged CYFS to cultivate, are doing serious destruction to some families – destruction far worse than any light smack could ever do.

Hat Tip Big News

Ian Wishart’s Live Chat

The Herald did a live chat with Ian Wishart this afternoon.

The results are well worth a read.

Comment From Claude
Why write this book when nobody has been charged?
4:06

Ian Wishart: Good question, because many on Facebook have said this. Point of fact, Chris Kahui was charged with double murder. He was charged. A jury acquitted him because his lawyers did a good job sowing the seeds of reasonable doubt. Can’t fault them for that. If Chris Kahui did it, he cannot in fact be charged again with their murders, even if he confessed on TV tonight. People can make their own minds up about the case and those involved when they read Breaking Silence
4:06
Comment From Myk
You have said that Macsyna King won’t receive any profit from the book. But I would like to know whether you, your agents, or anyone connected with the book have directly or indirectly paid or otherwise reimbursed her in any way?
4:08

Ian Wishart: Not a cent. She made it clear she didn’t want to profit from her sons’ deaths when she first called me, and I said I would not have agreed to investigate it and tell her story if she had wanted it. All she wanted was to tell her story so that others would learn how people slip into an abusive lifestyle, and to shed light on the twins murders. Apart from sharing a Domino’s pizza during lunch, Macsyna has never received anything nor will she

Comment From Gavin
Why didn’t Macsyna King speak up at the original trial or when the police were questioning her and tell them who murdered her children if she knows?
4:12

Ian Wishart: Another piece of misinformation that is widely believed…She did speak up – to police, not the media. Macsyna has told the police everything she could in response to their questions, on the strength of which a prosecution was mounted.

4:27
Comment From Cassidy
Don’t you think it is of poor taste to try and make money from the murders of the Kahui twins especially considering their murderers have not been brought to justice?
4:30

Ian Wishart: When I worked for TVNZ, I earned a six figure salary to do investigations into cases like this one. I had the luxury of expenses being covered, helicopters at my beck and call, and lots of lovely advertising to pay for all this. Even so, no media outlet nowadays allows a staff member six months to a year to work on a story…it takes time and staff have to be paid. So with big investigations that have to be printed in book form, it costs. We print them in book form to pay for the bills incurred and wage costs. No one got to be a millionaire from publishing books in NZ
4:30
Comment From Lal
Would you consider donation all profits (this amount would need clarification) to a charity – pref. child abuse based charity?
4:31

Moderator: Some good questions coming through. Thanks readers.
4:31

Ian Wishart: For the reasons just explained, I can’t donate all proceeds from the book to charity because then I don’t eat. If we were a massive publisher with multiple income streams, great. We’re not. But a donation to charity is definitely on the cards, if the book manages to recoup its costs and get into stores

 

Training is one thing, experience is another

This quote has been bandied around over the last day or so:

Dr Kelly said more manpower and more training may be the only way to stop babies like Chris and Cru Kahui from dying violently.

“It is one of the reasons why I think our inter-agency management of these cases is often so poor,” Kelly said.

Most GPs get a total of two hours training to deal with suspected child abuse, which Dr Kelly says is not enough.

Two hours doesn’t seem like a lot, but I suspect it’s a two hours that will stick in the mind of any medical student much more than your average anatomy lecture.

I say this because I know someone who took her child to the doctor. I can’t remember whether it was an injury or an illness (it may have even been meningitis).

Anyway, the doctor had a medical student with him. The student whispered something in the doctor’s ear, earning an immediate rebuke from the elder doctor.

You see, the student had suggested that the child may have been abused, and should be reported as a potential abuse case. The elder doctor could see that what was presented was clearly not abuse, nor was my friend an experienced mother who even at first glance was far from the sort of mother who neglects her children. (In fact quite the opposite, her elder children would easily count in the top 1% of achievers in their academic and professional accomplishments*.)

Perhaps more training would enable the student to tell the difference. Possibly.

More likely is that more training would lead to more false positives, as students see child abuse in every injury or serious illness. Because, in spite of all the “if it saves only one child” rhetoric, false reporting of child abuse is itself very damaging.

Better to combine the existing training with on-the-job experience, where older doctors can pass on their real-life experience in real clinical situations.

 

*Yes, I know that there are also parents who abuse children while trying to push them to achieve.

New Smacking Case

There’s a new case the Perfect Parent Lobby are adding to their “abused but let off by the courts” file*.

The lead juror in the child cruelty case said she was “embarrassed to be a New Zealander” because the couple on trial were “good decent parents trying to instil a sense of responsibility”.

But former Green MP Sue Bradford, the law’s architect, said she was ashamed people thought such actions were acceptable. To her they amounted to assault.

The father and his new wife were found not guilty after a trial on 15 charges alleging cruelty against two children from his previous marriage. The children were aged 10 and under at the time.

The couple’s lawyer used Section 59 of the Crimes Act, the amendment championed by Bradford, as a defence.

The case tested the amendment and showed what a jury would allow in terms of “justified force” to prevent or minimise harm, or to stop the child engaging in “offensive or disruptive behaviour”.

“It is probably the worst thing I have ever done to my child, but I grabbed my tie that I wear for church and I tied his wrist to my wrist beside my bed so he couldn’t take off and go and kill himself,” the father told the Sunday Star-Times. “Then he did manage to loosen it, so I did tie it around his neck for only about 30 seconds. I admitted to those things in court, but given the circumstances and what I was trying to achieve – trying to stop him killing himself – I was found not guilty.”

He also gave his son a “number two” haircut to teach him a lesson after a couple of years of stealing from his parents.

There’s a thread at Kiwiblog, with some interesting comments by some on the left. This one in particular is disturbing, as the author (Toad) seems to think it a bad thing that parents have the right to use force at all. (If you disagree with that, I suggest you reply in comments here – but be sure to do so without using force of any kind.)

But really, there’s pretty much zero detail on any of the alleged offending. And a lot of people are jumping to the conclusion that the jury didn’t do it’s job by acquitting. Much of that is being generated by this quote:

Deanne Shilton, the lead juror in the case, contacted the Sunday Star-Times through a third party. She said she was “embarrassed to be a New Zealander” and felt awful for the couple for having to go through the case – particularly the heavily pregnant wife of the father, who was forced to climb several flights of stairs to court cells during any break.

Clearly the jury found the case to have no substance whatsoever, and this was clear from the start.

Bob McCroskrie has some of the background. It sheds light on just how the jury came to that conclusion.

While staying with his mum on holiday, Jack’s 12y/o decided he wanted to stay there instead of at dad’s. The mother told him to ring Whatsup – the youth helpline – and to make claims of smacking and abuse by Jack. This was referred to CYF, and the nightmare began.

Despite testimony and written affidavits in the Family Court covering this period which praised Jack’s parenting skills and supported his application for custody of his children, and despite no other supporting evidence, CYF also took custody of his 6y/o and 1y/o.

Letting a government agency be used by one side in a breakup is not a good look.

There were claims against Jack and his wife Jill of smacking, excessive time out in a cold room (the whole house was cold!), cold showers, giving the 12y/o a #2 haircut (not a shameful cut at all – the school principal testified in court that it was nice), and excessive chores.

I’ll just break in here. So let’s be clear – outside of smacking the abuse consisted of:

  • Living in a typical cold NZ house
  • Cold showers (oh, the horror!)
  • Getting the child to do work around the house
  • Giving the boy a haircut

One wonders what sort of prosecution would bring up such charges. One can only speculate that they wanted to lose their case.

Jack and Jill were also charged with kidnapping and tying the 12 y/o when preventing him from harming himself and others. The 12y/o had twice recently seriously assaulted Jill including punching her in the stomach when she was pregnant and biting and kicking her to the ground on another occasion, but no action was taken by CYF or the police.

Tying up a child sounds bad, but when the other option is letting him give a pregnant woman a miscarriage (which the SST never mentioned)  there’s a clear case to be made for protection of others. Which is, was, and always will be legal.

Jack was also charged with washing the boy’s mouth with soap when he repeatedly swore mother-f**ker and other highly offensive language at the parents. Other attempts to stop this had failed.

Surprisingly, the average kiwis on the jury didn’t think using soap was abuse.

I don’t know if the jury got it right.

But it seems that there is a lot more here than the media are willing to report.

*Actually, there are a few in that file that were not let off by the courts. Also, none have ever (AFAIK) escaped CYFS sanction regardless of court findings.

Update: The Jury Foreperson has contacted Bob

What the Star Times didn’t say and Sue Bradford doesn’t know, is the child punched the step-mother in the stomach whilst she was pregnant stating he wished the baby would die.  On another occasion, we saw photographs of bruising, cuts and abrasions that the son had inflicted on the step-mother – knocking her to the ground.  This was her reward for attempting to prevent the child using a bicycle that didn’t belong to him.  After hours and hours of searching they finally brought the child home late at night.  He then went on to threaten to kill himself and the other children sleeping in the house.  Conveniently, none of this is mentioned in the Star Times article – just the desperate attempts by the father to protect his family and the child from himself portrayed in a way that makes him look like a monster – he is far from it.

The Jury found both the father and the step-mother not guilty on all 15 charges presented in less than an hour.

Read the whole thing.



Shame on you Amnesty

There is only one blogger that I know of in this country who has ever advocated using government power to shut down dissent.

But that does not protect the children of the [people*] who organised this referendum, the people who [disagree with me**]. Those children need our protection now, and it is absolutely the business of the state to protect them.

There is only one blogger I know of who has said something that outrageous in response to a well-publicised public referendum where the government position was roundly defeated. I know of only one blogger who has sworn at the public for refusing to submit to an Orwellian redefinition of the word “reasonable”.

I have just two words to say to all of you who voted “no”: F[**]k you.

I know of only one blogger who is prepared to lie about good New Zealanders, and smear reasonable people as deranged, lie about the law and it’s effects, and encouraged our government to resort to the tactics of totalitarian regimes.

That blogger is Idiot Savant, otherwise known as Malcolm Harbrow.

Apparently he was recently nominated for an Amnesty International Aotearoa NZ’s Human Rights Defender Award.

One thing’s for sure, I agree with one thing he’s said in response.

While I’m flattered, its clear from the list that I do not belong on it. The other nominees are doing real work which changes the world for the better. All I do is mouth off on the internet.

Amnesty have seriously screwed up with this one. They’ve failed to do basic research. Simply reading through his blog entries for the past few years would have revealed his anti-democratic hate. Calling for children to be removed from political opponents crosses a line that should never, ever be crossed in a democratic society. It is really only a few steps short of calling for those opponents to be locked up for the “crime” of being opponents.  Those sorts of tactics are in fact the exact sort of tactics that Amnesty was setup to expose.

Yes, he does frequently point out issues that need attention. But his response (and lack of any sort of apology or remorse) to the Section 59 referendum was so utterly shameful, that it should disqualify him from any consideration for this sort of award. It’s no good advocating for human rights when they agree with your politics, only to call for political persecution of people who oppose your ideas.

 

——————

*inflammatory hate speech removed

**inflammatory hateful lies removed – see this post for an explanation of the “15 minutes” claim, which turns out to be the polar opposite of abuse, and rather a call for calm, patient parenting.

Readers can also read by Fear and Fallacy The repression of reason and public good by the antismacking lobby in New Zealand by Michael L Drake. Drake describes his own run in with the authorities, their willingness to ignore the law and criticise his actions without investigation, and carefully examines and discredits a wide range of government actions and research (both domestic and foreign) on the subject.

In fact, his opening statements relate directly to the above.

Totalitarianism replaces the checks and balances of democracy in one of two ways: suddenly by revolution or gradually by stealth. Using false information, character assassination, irrational emotional criticism and unrestrained organs of the state, New Zealand’s smacking-phobes appear set to overthrow centuries of safe, sensible and successful parental nurture by eroding the checks and balances of our social conventions, democratic processes, and justice system. The goal is not just to stop parents smacking – it is to stop all forms of rebuke and shape a society where the state has seized the nurture of children from parents.

It is not that everyone involved deliberately employs misinformation and shame, or understands the ultimate loss of the traditional family to which this leads. Many opponents of smacking appear to be genuinely motivated by a desire to promote good for children. They may repeat and use fallacies and fear in place of reason and democratic process believing what they say is true and what they do is  “appropriate”. But no level of motivation can turn nonsense into sense. Fallacies repeated in good faith are nonetheless fallacies, and fear engendered with good intentions is nonetheless fear.

Extremists

Interesting how the Tea Party gets described by One News as “extremist”, even with more than a quarter of the population supporting them.

Interesting because, I’ve never heard the “Yes Vote” campaign described in those terms in spite of far smaller support (6% of the voting public supported them) and a ridiculously fundamentalist position on child discipline.

However, there is one thing in common. In both cases, the liberal side’s chief strategy has been to lie about the motives of the conservative one.

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