German Cities Banning Older Diesel Vehicles to Tackle Air Pollution

German Cities Banning Older Diesel Vehicles to Tackle Air Pollution, by Melissa Eddy. Diesel cars and trucks are the new cancer sticks, not suitable for crowded places like cities?

Other European countries have taken measures to reduce the number of diesel-powered cars, but the technology is almost synonymous with Germany, where there are 15 million diesel cars on the streets and where automakers bet their futures on technology they billed as environmentally friendly, even as they rigged software in their cars to pass stringent emissions tests. …

The days of flooding the inner cities with poisonous diesel emissions are over,” said Jürgen Resch, managing director of Deutsche Umwelthilfe. “These vehicles have no place in our cities anymore.”

Frustrated with the lack of progress in improving air quality in about 70 of the country’s most polluted cities, the group brought lawsuits against several local governments, demanding that they uphold the air quality standards set by the European Union. In some instances, cities found that the only way to ensure those standards were met involved banning certain vehicles — mostly older diesel models — from city streets. …

The court further found that when emissions exceeded the allowed limits, banning all vehicles with diesel motors older than those approved in 2014 and gasoline-burning engines older than those approved in 2001 was the only way for the municipal authorities to ensure air quality. …

But resistance to steps that curb drivers’ rights in Germany remains deeply rooted. Diesel technology was developed in the country, and it accounts for many of the 800,000 jobs in the German auto industry. …

Municipal groups have warned that allowing bans could be fatal for inner cities, where delivery, repair and emergency workers, as well as many residents, rely on diesel-fired vehicles. …

Customers are already turning away from diesel technology. The latest figures show a drop of more than 17 percent in the number of diesel-burning cars registered in January compared with December.

What is it like to live under Sharia law?

What is it like to live under Sharia law? In “A Thousand Splendid Suns,” a popular 2007 novel, Khaled Hosseini describes what happens when the Taliban took control of Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan in 1996. Kabul had become quite Westernized, with women studying at the universities and holding professional jobs for instance. Islam has never been able to move away for its roots in seventh century Arabia, because the fundamentalists follow the immutable texts and return any Islamic society that strays too far.

Here is a short excerpt about what happened when Islamic fundamentalists got hold of a somewhat westernized society and set about implementing Sharia. If the west is successfully colonized by Islam, this may happen here too in a few decades.

The following day, Kabul was overrun by trucks … red Toyota trucks weaved through the streets. Armed bearded men in black turbans sat in their beds. From each truck, a loudspeaker blared announcements, first in Farsi, then Pashto. The same message played from loudspeakers perched atop mosques, and on the radio … The message was also written in flyers, tossed into the streets. …

These are the laws that we will enforce and you will obey:

All citizens must pray five times a day. If it is prayer time and you are caught doing something other, you will be beaten.

All men will grow their beards. The correct length is at least one clenched fist beneath the chin. If you do not abide by this, you will be beaten.

All boys will wear turbans. Boys in grade one through six will wear black turbans, higher grades will wear white. All boys will wear Islamic clothes. Shirt collars will be buttoned.

Singing is forbidden.

Dancing is forbidden.

Playing cards, playing chess, gambling, and kiteflying are forbidden.

Writing books, watching films, and painting pictures are forbidden.

If you keep parakeets, you will be beaten. Your birds will be killed.

If you steal, your hand will be cut off at the wrist. If you steal again, your foot will be cut off.

If you are not Muslim, do not worship where you can be seen by Muslims. If you do, you will be beaten and imprisoned. If you are caught trying to convert a Muslim to your faith, you will be executed.

Attention women:

You will stay inside your homes at all times. It is not proper for women to wander aimlessly about the streets. If you go outside, you must be accompanied by amahram, a male relative. If you are caught alone on the street, you will be beaten and sent home.

You will not, under any circumstance, show your face. You will cover with burqa when outside. If you do not, you will be severely beaten.

Cosmetics are forbidden.

Jewelry is forbidden.

You will not wear charming clothes.

You will not speak unless spoken to.

You will not make eye contact with men.

You will not laugh in public. If you do, you will be beaten.

You will not paint your nails. If you do, you will lose a finger.

Girls are forbidden from attending school. All schools for girls will be closed immediately.

Women are forbidden from working.

If you are found guilty of adultery, you will be stoned to death

Listen. Listen well. Obey. Allah-u-akbar.

Rasheed turned off the radio. They were sitting on the living-room floor, eating dinner less than a week after they’d seen Najibullah’s corpse hanging by a rope.

“They can’t make half the population stay home and do nothing,” Laila said.

“Why not?” Rasheed said. …

“This isn’t some village. This is Kabul. Women here used to practice law and medicine;  they held office in the government-”

Rasheed grinned. “Spoken like the arrogant daughter of a poetry-reading university man that you are. How urbane, how Tajik, of you. You think this is some new, radical idea the Taliban are bringing? Have you ever lived outside of your precious little shell in Kabul, my gull? Ever cared to visit the real Afghanistan, the south, the east, along the tribal border with Pakistan? No? I have. And I can tell you that there are many places in this country that have always lived this way, or close enough anyhow. Not that you would know.”

“I refuse to believe it,” Laila said “They’re not serious.”

“What the Taliban did to Najibullah looked serious to me,” Rasheed said. “Wouldn’t you agree?”

“He was a communist! He was the head of the Secret Police.”

Rasheed laughed.

Mariam heard the answer in his laugh: that in the eyes of the Taliban, being a communist and the leader of the dreaded KHAD made Najibullah only slightly more contemptible than a woman.

And to think that the left in the West currently supports Islam by preventing criticism of the Islamic invasion, by accusing critics of “Islamophobia,” and by supporting immigration from the Islamic world. The left is making a dreadful error, just like they did a few decades ago when they protected and quietly encouraged Communism.

Communism and now Islam. Both are totalitarian political ideologies that require massive government violence to enforce them.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s “Gulag Archipelago” in the 1970s lifted the scales from my eyes about the real nature of Communism, as opposed to the lovely sounding theory about equality. I’d been lulled by a lefty news environment into believing Communism was maybe somehow benevolent, trendy, and perhaps even kind of good. But that changed when Solzhenitsyn pointed out that equality of outcome in practice required state thuggery on a vast scale.

The left never renounced communism or admitted it was a horrible mistake. Now they are doing it again, but with a fair deadlier ideology. This is a mistake on an historic scale, one that could destroy the west.

Immigration is changing western society from high trust to low trust, and the elites are blind to it

Immigration is changing western society from high trust to low trust, and the elites are blind to it, by Eric Raymond.

Facts on the ground have caused me to move away from a pure laissez-faire position on [immigration]. …

Disease and crime:

Both here and in Europe there’s been a significant spike in communicable diseases that can be traced back to low immunization rates in what Trump may or may not have called “shithole” countries.

Crime is a real issue. … Illegals’ propensity is much higher, to the point that 22% of all incarcerees are illegals (that’s 92% of all jailed immigrants). …

But the really big issue is social trust:

Diversity erodes social trust, trust being that extremely valuable form of social capital that enables people to make handshake deals, leave their doors unlocked, and trust institutions to treat them fairly. Sociologist Robert Putnam was so shocked to discover this that he sat on his results for seven years before publishing.

In diverse communities trust drops not only between ethnolinguistic groups but within them. It’s insidious and very harmful — low-trust societies are bad, bad places to live.

Australia’s per-capita rate of immigration is much higher than in the US, but we started with a more homogeneous nation of people.

The U.S. has a proud tradition of assimilating legal immigrants into a high-trust society, but it succeeds in this by making them non-diverse — teaching them to assimilate folk values and blend in. Putnam’s work suggests strongly that without the ability to rate-limit immigration to be within some as yet undetermined maximum, the harm from erosion of trust would exceed the benefits of immigration.

We are probably above the optimal legal immigration rate — the highest compatible with avoiding net decrease in social trust over time – already …

Everywhere outside a few blue-state enclaves, Americans sense the erosion of social trust and have connected it to illegal immigration.

If you run around saying “We should end border enforcement”, enough people to form a blocking coalition are going to hear that as “He wants the U.S. to sit on its hands as erosion of social trust degrades it into a shithole.”  Of course most of them don’t have this intellectually analyzed — it’s a more a gut feeling. But no less powerful for that, especially since the problem is real. …

Why the elites are blind to it:

We can only save the positive benefits of immigration by controlling it. And by growing some freaking humility about our biases. It’s easy for elite whites like you and me to see only the upside of immigration (cool restaurants, interesting music, exotically pretty girls, lower price levels due to labor cost push on the things we buy, getting to feel virtuous about our inclusivity); immigration seldom has any obvious downside for us unless we roll snake-eyes and get killed by MS-13 or something.

We tend to miss the fact that if you’re a native-born unskilled laborer or minority or legal immigrant the cost-benefit ratio looks very different and not favorable at all. Loose labor markets are good to us, but sure as hell not to our poorer compatriots. A little more compassion and a little less class-blindness on our part would be an improvement. …

The deplorables are winning the argument against too much immigration and free trade:

One of the major forces currently poisoning our politics is a breakdown in trust between people like you and me — the cognitive elites — and the rest of America. Deplorables. Flyover country. Brexit, and Trump’s election, slapped me upside the head. I’ve been forced to confront some uncomfortable truths.

They think we’ve betrayed and abandoned them for a mess of virtue signaling and glib ideologizing. On the left: identity politics, PC, and open borders justified on multiculturalist grounds. On the right: free trade and open borders justified on laissez-faire principle.

They have a point. I’m seeing that now.

I mean, I might still think free trade is a good idea and have lots of arguments for it. But my arguments don’t mean fuck-all to a Rust-Belt steelworker who’s watched his livelihood get exported and the community around him wither and has nothing left but a cheap high on opioids. Nor to an unskilled black or legal-immigrant urbanite who can’t get a job because the restaurants can hire illegals for cheaper.

We owe these people more than we have given them. What we owe can’t mainly be paid in money. It’s compassion; a fair hearing. Respect. Not dismissing them as trash or troglodytes because they don’t love the brave new globalized world that gives us options but – too often – closes off theirs.

I don’t have easy solutions to these problems. But is it too much to ask that people like you and me should stop being arrogant assholes about them?

Commenter TheDividualist:

It isn’t blindness as such, it is a conscious effort to cement in a progressive/Dem voter majority, whatever the social costs. …

Basically, elites are selected for loyalty. To ensure loyalty, people who would not do well on a free market are selected. …

What do you do? Join the screaming and scream more intensely than anyone else. Cement in your political loyalties. Maybe you get a political and/or diversity hire job somewhere.

Commenter Anon Regular:

Historically, high trust is almost a synonym for ethnic homogeneity. I can’t think of another mechanism to build it upon (at least not outside of artificial situations like the military).

If you have a high IQ population but no homogenous substrate to generate that high trust, the best you can end up with is Singapore.

View from the left: Trump Is Winning — are you sick and tired of it yet?

View from the left: Trump Is Winning — are you sick and tired of it yet? By Alex Brandon at Politico, trying to talk some reality into his leftist readers.

Donald Trump is on track to win reelection to the presidency of the United States.

Yes, despite Russiagate, despite shitholegate and despite whatever gate he blunders through next. Despite approval ratings that would make Nixon weep. Despite his mind-numbing political misjudgments — defending accused pedophiles, for example — and the endless, unnecessary daily drama. Trump is winning. It is actually happening, people. And if there are those who want to stop it — and there are, of course, millions — they need to know what they are up against. It’s a lot more than they overconfidently think. …

Consider Trump’s record as president. He actually has something to run on. He’s cut taxes. He’s rolled back regulations. He’s put ISIS on its heels. The economy and the stock market are humming along again, despite recent turmoil. Any other Republican incumbent running on that record of relative peace and prosperity — just as Eisenhower and Reagan did — would be in pretty good shape for reelection. Trump, as loathed as he is, might not cruise to reelection on an electoral landslide like those predecessors. But if jobs continue to be created and the economy continues to hum, whether he deserves the credit or not, enough voters might just hold their nose again and vote for him.

Still living in the fantasy world though. Trump unpopular? Maybe with you and your friends Alex, but Trump is running at 49% approve, 49% disapprove in the latest Rasmussen poll. That’s 5% better than Obama at the same stage, and I don’t recall anyone in the media saying Obama was “loathed”.

One big difference is that most people like Trump’s tax cuts, but disliked Obama’s health care changes. In both cases the media gave a very misleading impression, and people only learned the truth after these changes actually hit their budgets. Most like the tax cuts (bigger than told) and hated the health care changes (premiums went up more than they were told).

Italy is seething with anger over the immigrant murder and dismemberment of an 18-year-old girl

Italy is seething with anger over the immigrant murder and dismemberment of an 18-year-old girl, by Robert Hardman.

Flowers are still arriving at the roadside for Pamela Mastropietro. It is just over two weeks since this troubled blonde 18-year-old went missing here [in Macerata], only to resurface in a pair of suitcases left in a ditch.

No sooner was an illegal immigrant arrested for her killing than a local neo-fascist took it upon himself to drive around town in broad daylight shooting anyone who looked vaguely foreign.

Six African migrants were injured — though no one has left any flowers for them.

Several arrests and the arrival of one of the country’s top police officers here have done little to calm the mood.

Troubling questions continue to emerge. Why are some of the girl’s body parts allegedly missing? And why was the suspected murderer here in Macerata at all, having had all his claims for asylum rejected?  …

Elections soon:

The EU’s failed migration policies and the arrival of hundreds of thousands of African migrants on the Italian coast had already made immigration one of the two big issues in the election on March 4. The other is Italy’s dismal economy, currently buried under £2 trillion of national debt.

Macerata has raised the stakes even higher.

Most Italians I meet blame their politicians for ineptitude and the EU for abandoning them. They are in a vengeful mood. …

The two front-runners are the ‘anti-politics’ Eurosceptic Five Star Movement, founded by an anarchic comedian, but now led by a nervous young man in a suit. On the other side is a Eurosceptic, Right-wing coalition led by former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. …

As for the Left, things are looking bleak. Italy’s centre-Left Democratic Party (PD) is the only one sharing the vision of ever-closer European union peddled by France’s Emmanuel Macron and Germany’s Angela Merkel. But Italians want less Europe, not more. …

There is, though, little appetite for a Brexit-style break with Europe — there will be no ‘Quitaly’ just yet — largely because the country could not stand the economic shock.

But Brussels is viewed with utter contempt.

Here in Macerata, 150 miles north of Rome, I find zero appetite for greater European integration — and this is a Left-wing university town.

Not any more. Even the liberals talk like Ukip, while those on the Right talk of mass deportations. Every conversation involves the phrase: ‘I’m not racist but . . .’

‘The Bush Party Has Become a Trump Party’ on Immigration, Trade, Staying Out of Foreign Wars

‘The Bush Party Has Become a Trump Party’ on Immigration, Trade, Staying Out of Foreign Wars, by John Binder.

Populist conservative icon Pat Buchanan has declared victory within the Republican Party, saying “The Bush party has become a Trump party” on the key issues of immigration, trade, and staying out of foreign wars.

During the weekly show The McLaughlin Group, Buchanan — a pioneer of the economic nationalist movement — said the war within the “conservative movement” was “over,” saying President Trump’s agenda of economic nationalism has finally beat out decades of free trade, open borders, and global interventionist dogma favored by the Republican establishment and neoconservative wing of the party.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

Police ‘Don’t Know’ Why Rape Is Up 20 Per Cent in Sadiq Khan’s London

Police ‘Don’t Know’ Why Rape Is Up 20 Per Cent in Sadiq Khan’s London, by Jack Montgomery.

Rapes are soaring in Britain’s multicultural capital under Labour Mayor Sadiq Khan — but police claim they have no idea what could be behind the increase.

7,613 rapes were recorded in Sadiq Khan’s London in the 12 months to the end of January 2018, compared with 6,392 over the previous year — a rise of almost 20 per cent, the Evening Standard reports.

Some have attempted to attribute the rise to victims being more confident in coming forward, but Khan’s Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Sophie Linden, has admitted that the figures could point to a legitimate “increase in actual sexual violence and rape offending”.

Deputy Commissioner for the Metropolitan Police force Sir Craig Mackey, too, has confessed that “there is something going on with sexual offending in London” — but claimed to be none the wiser when asked at the London Assembly if he could explain what was behind the rise. …

Clueless. Blinded by PC.

Commissioner Dick appeared unwilling to accept that there was any racial or cultural angle to the fact that some 84 per cent of groomers have turned out to be Muslims of South Asian extraction, and their victims overwhelmingly non-Muslim — prompting fears that the authorities are still bound by the same politically correct dogma which stopped crimes from being investigated in cities like Rotherham and Rochdale for years.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

Help! Facebook Is Censoring Bible Verses

Help! Facebook Is Censoring Bible Verses. By Julio Severo.

Facebook gave me a message on February 15, 2018:

We Removed Something You Posted

It looks like something you posted doesn’t follow our Community Standards. We remove posts that attack people based on their race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, gender or disability.

Levítico 18.22:

Não de deitarás com homem, como se fosse mulher; abominação é.

The [bolded] concluding text, which is in Portuguese, was targeted and removed by Facebook. This post had been originally published by me on June 2015 on my Facebook account and its translation into English is:

Leviticus 18:22:

You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

Willing or not willing, Facebook treated Leviticus 18:22 directly as a “attack” on “people based on their… sexual orientation, gender.”

That is, Facebook treated the Bible as a criminal book! …

Leviticus 18:22 is famous not only among Christians, but also among Jews. In fact, this verse was firstly written and addressed to the Jewish people. By the way, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg is a Jewish American. Does he approve what his company has done against the Jewish Scriptures? Is he aware of what his company is doing against the Jewish Scriptures? Or does he think that Facebook is now bigger, greater and more important than the holy Jewish and Christian Scriptures? …

George Washington, the first U.S. president, said, “It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.” Would Zuckerberg and his company remove his Bible posts if he had a Facebook account?

The bible is the foundational text for western civilization. Now it’s hate speech? Who is Facebook to censor the bible?

Florida Gun Show Witnesses Record Attendance amid Dem Gun Control Push

Florida Gun Show Witnesses Record Attendance amid Dem Gun Control Push. Comments by Scott of the Pacific:

Happens every time the US Government rings the alarmism bell over guns. Under Obama, the US had RECORD gun sales.

The fools don’’t realise this is about the citizenry being armed in case Presidents like “Chairman Obama” were to try and confiscate them.

James Madison — along with Thomas Jefferson, a key author of the US Constitution — was terribly worried about two things:

  1. That tyranical Kings like George the 3rd would try and disarm the citizenry and impose their will.
  2. A military coup.

I believe our military wouldn’t participate in anything of the sort in this day and age. But look what Obama did. Erdogan in Turkey manufactured a “coup” to purge his ranks of non compliant sycophants, where as Obama just fired them. Just another lubrication of the “slippery slope” to tyranny.

Over the years of the Obama administration, he replaced competent senior officers with politicians. Politics first, commissar.

The Joint Chiefs started looking like a political party instead of military commanders. They became “yes men” to Obama’s disastrous foreign policy, and watched as our military was degraded.

The same happened in Australia. Every leader who commands more than about a thousand people is selected for political merit nowadays — meaning they are PC. The rank-and-file are safely normal, but the upper leadership is all PC.

60 Minutes reporter Charles Wooley defends Jacinda Ardern interview

60 Minutes reporter Charles Wooley defends Jacinda Ardern interview, by Sam Buckingham-Jones.

The 60 Minutes reporter who described New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern as “attractive” and speculated when her baby was conceived has defended his interview with her, saying the reaction has been overwhelming and “Orwellian”.

Charles Wooley, a veteran journalist with the Nine Network, has come under fire from some viewers and critics for marvelling at Ms Ardern’s age and appearance, rather than her policies.

“I’ve met a lot of prime ministers in my time, but none so young, not too many so smart, and never one so attractive”, he said during the 13-minute segment that aired on Sunday night.

On New Zealand radio yesterday, Wooley said Australians and New Zealanders are “culturally different” and conceded while he thought the details of the pregnancy were funny, he may have been wrong.

“It’s a bit Orwellian, you know I think. You’ve got to be so careful now with newsspeak and thought crime and everything else. We suffer the same thing in Australia. It’s not a good time to be a journalist,” he told Newstalk ZB.

Under fire from the PC tryants for saying the bloody obvious that all of us were thinking.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

French rabbi’s baby burned after acid placed in stroller

French rabbi’s baby burned after acid placed in stroller, by JTA.

The baby daughter of a French rabbi was burned after being exposed to solvent placed in her carriage.

The 14-month-old girl suffered burns on her back and thighs Monday in the city of Bron, near Lyon, Le Parisien daily reported Wednesday. The baby is not in danger, according to the report.

The solvent had been placed inside a carriage that the baby’s grandmother had parked in a communal space inside her apartment building overnight from Sunday to Monday. The grandmother rushed the baby to the hospital after noticing a severe irritation on the baby’s skin after taking her for a walk in the stroller and then bringing her inside.

Police are looking into a possible anti-Semitic motive, perhaps by a neighbor, a police source told Le Parisien.

Richard Spencer:

“Possible”? Really? Who else could have done this? “Right-wing extremists”? Not likely. In 2015, French Jewish leader Roger Cukierman said: “All violence, and we must say this, all violent acts today are committed by young Muslims.”

Is France diverse enough yet?

hat-tip Stephen Neil