Saturday, December 30, 2006

Hanging

An Englishman who was wrecked on a strange shore andwandering along the coast . . . came to a gallowswith a victim hanging on it, and fell down on hisknees and thanked God that he at last beheld a signof civilization. --James A. Garfield (1831-1881) (House of Representatives speech, June 15, 1870)

There's nothing like a hanging in the morning to clear a man's
thoughts. Depend upon it, sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in
a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.-- Samuel Johnson,
"The Life of Samuel Johnson" (1791)

Hanging one scoundrel, it appears, does not deter the next. Well,
what of it? The first one is at least disposed of. - H. L. Mencken

When the wicked perish, there are shouts of joy.
--The Bible, Proverbs 11:10 NIV

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Baghdad Ballet

Click on the title and find it on that blog. I could not upload it to mine but find it very good.

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Etymology for bloggers

"The term "blog" is derived from "Web log." "Blog" can also beused as a verb, meaning to maintain or add content to a blog...The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger on 17 December1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz,who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase "we blog"in the sidebar of his blog "Peterme.com" in April or May of 1999.This was quickly adopted as both a noun and verb ("to blog,"meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog")."From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blog

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The British government does not speak for me

"I welcome the fact that Saddam Hussein has been tried by an Iraqi court for at least some of the appalling crimes he committed against the Iraqi people. He has now been held to account.
"The British government does not support the use of the death penalty, in Iraq or anywhere else. We advocate an end to the death penalty worldwide, regardless of the individual or the crime.
"We have made our position very clear to the Iraqi authorities, but we respect their decision as that of a sovereign nation."

So says our foreign secretary, speaking for British government not the British people who have always when polled shown a large majority in favour of the death penalty for murder.

The world is a better place for the death of a tyrant. Pray for the peace of Iraq.

Incidentally, repudiation of the death penalty is a condition of E.U. membership. Another reason for us to exit the E.U..

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Thursday, December 28, 2006

Blair the Dhimmi

Blair on Islam: Standard-Bearer of Tolerance
From the desk of The Brussels Journal on Wed, 2006-12-27 08:43
A quote from Tony Blair in Foreign Affairs, January/February 2007
To me, the most remarkable thing about the Koran is how progressive it is. I write with great humility as a member of another faith. As an outsider, the Koran strikes me as a reforming book, trying to return Judaism and Christianity to their origins, much as reformers attempted to do with the Christian church centuries later. The Koran is inclusive. It extols science and knowledge and abhors superstition. It is practical and far ahead of its time in attitudes toward marriage, women, and governance.
Under its guidance, the spread of Islam and its dominance over previously Christian or pagan lands were breathtaking. Over centuries, Islam founded an empire and led the world in discovery, art, and culture. The standard-bearers of tolerance in the early Middle Ages were far more likely to be found in Muslim lands than in Christian ones.


Blair is no expert on Islam but he presumably has advisers who are and who know this is not true. Blair is being a dhimmi politician seeking Muslim votes and support for his war on terror.

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My mailing group

I have for several years run a group that mails daily quotations. Click on the link or go to the bottom of the blog to subscribe.

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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

A top reviewer

Most of the books I read I review on Amazon.co.uk. Follow the link, show you like my reviews and help me get from a top 1000 reviewer to a top 100.

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For what we are about to receive.




If a man is sad enough to wear a Leeds United shirt on a day they lost yet again to that old source of humiliation, Sunderland, he can be consoled by caviar and champers.

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A very expensive teat-time

Iranian Beluga caviar is problably the world's most expensive food. I looked it up on the net and this tin can cost over £400. Adrian was given it by his boss and brought it for tea with the traditional accompaniaments shown here. These are champagne and vodka, nor cucumber and sausage rolls.

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In the park on Boxing Day

Two very enthusiatic swingers powered by Uncle Adrian. Note the footwear.


Boots are going off!


Hannah about to slide.



This motor bike is not a smooth ride!

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Boxing Day 2006

Going cold turkey! Boxing Day lunch with Adrian, and Rachel who is getting on for 6 months pregnant now.
Betyhany's favorite present is her doll which does many things and can be rather noisy.

Bethany and Hannah watch Auntie Rachel unwrap a present.





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Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Hannah on Boxing day 2006


Hannah on Boxing day 2006, originally uploaded by maigemu.

Hannah is a poser. Here she is dressing up while still in her pyjamas.

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Enjoyment in toil

My first calling was to pharmacy. I find it boring, lacking intellectual stimulation and controlled by a statist, paternalistic, bureaucratic establishment.So I need to find enjoyment in this toil. At 60 I probably do not have too long to do this but I have no big pension fund and not toiling is not good for mental health. I have had two other callings. First there is teaching the faith and pastoral care. My refusal to conform to British academic assesment of theology ruled me out of academic work, my cyclothymic personality led to self-disqualification from the second. Finally I enjoyed politics but I failed to get beyond the local borough into national politics and even locally I lost at my third election then fell out with my former party. Pharmacy has fed the family but I have little respect for the profession. It is not only a conspiracy against the laity but also against newcomers . Like all of life it is now inundated with petty regulation and paperwork.

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Monday, December 25, 2006

Tea Time


chrstmas06 020, originally uploaded by maigemu.

After the groaning board that was Christmas lunch, now it is tea with crackers.

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Fancy Dress


chrstmas06 019, originally uploaded by maigemu.

Hannah is a fairy, Bethany Snow White but Bethany's main interest was in her new doll.

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Books read in Decenmber 2006 (7)

1. The Cat in the Hat - Dr. Seuss

Delightful to read to one's granddaughters.

2. Oh,The Places You'll Go - Dr. Seuss

Teaches children that life has ups and downs so perseverance is needed.

3. One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish. - Dr. Seuss

The rhymes and potential for teaching reading skills to children make these books a delight. But on Christmas afternoon a surfeit of feasting meant I fell asleep while reading this aloud to Bethany.

4. The Footsteps of God: Christian Biographies by John Legg

Simply the best book on church history I have read if one considers the needs of the ordinary Christian. From the early martyrs through to Spurgeon, John Legg writes biographies that inform the mind and move the heart. I cannot recommend this book too highly. It is full of great quotes from great men and women. Finally the truths taught from history are applied to today. I have heard the author preach many times. He is an excellent expositor. here he proves an excellent writer, biographer and historian.

5. Goldilocks and the Three Bears First Reader

Great with your granddaughter when Grandma has also provided finger puppets for all four characters.


6. Scrambled Eggs Super - Dr. Seuss

This is a higher lever of reading than the above books by Seuss. Great fun even when I was tired enough to be falling asleep reading it before the girls' bedtime.

7. Tiny's Big Wish

Tiny is a baby elephant who wants to be big like mother and all the other elephants. I think the messge of the book for the child reader is that they too will be grown up one day.

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Father Christmas

Calling for helpers with distribution?


One year of beard growth.


Once a year, on this day, I assert my patriarchal right to an indoor post-prandial smoke. Thank you Gary, for a good Honduran grand corona.

"A woman is only a woman, but a good cigar is a smoke." Rudyard Kipling, The Betrothed.

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Christmas Pudding

I was supposed to snap the main dinner course but what with carving the turkey and pouring the wine, I forgot.

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Christmas Service I.P.C. Ealing

Coming in to worship on Christmas morning.


Weeks family on the left.


Katy is pianist.


Bethany and Hannah are not paying attention to the childrens' talk.



Coming out.

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Christmas Day Morning 2006

Hannah and Bethany by the tree, full of anticipation.


Father Christmas is ready to begin distribution.


We cannot get into these parcels quickly enough.



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Saturday, December 23, 2006

Celebrating


Celebrating, originally uploaded by maigemu.

We were invited to join the Littles to celebrate Adrian and Rachel exchanging contracts on a new home.
A great Indian feast.

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Can you trust the Grauniad?

"More people in Britain think religion causes harm than believe it does good, according to a Guardian/ICM poll published today. It shows that an overwhelming majority see religion as a cause of division and tension - greatly outnumbering the smaller majority who also believe that it can be a force for good." - so says the liberal newspaper. But can you trust journalists who cannot even use the words majority and minority correctly? If one is to take their polling seriously one needs to know what questions were asked. We are not told. Asking about generic religion is a generalisation too far. The Guardian may not know there is such diversity as to render generalisation worthless.

This evening I saw the hard copy. Still no complete list of questions. We did though have a typically Guardian leader with secularism the chosen solution for our problems. This is simply unconstitutional in our country and contradicted by a later editorial praising the West Yorkshire town of Saltaire. Saltaire is not what it is because of Hockney, but because of Titus Salt, a Congregationalist philanthropic mill owner. No secularism there but some Christian paternalism.

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The disappearing rat traps

I believe today I have found the explanation as to why I have lost three rat traps from the garden. I saw a fox running from next door's garden A fox is big enough to take a rat in a trap, hence my losses. We are plagued by rats and foxes can be a nuisance too. Oher people have complained about them digging in their gardens. Prior to this my only complaint was the noise of their mating. Bring back hunting say I. Kill the vermin!

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

A ranked bogger?

I am surprised to find myself number 109 in technoranki's British blogs? How did I do it? What happened to Adrian Warnock?

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Monday, December 18, 2006

Abortion and Its Afterbirth!

This is a personal testimony about one of our sons. We had five sons, all wonderful people. As I approach my twilight years, I become increasingly grateful for them and their contributions to life. They have been more than a joy to us, they have become our inspiration, as well. Unfortunately our oldest opted to check out of life at the tender age of 19, but even from this tragedy lilies grew on the rod of sorrow.
This is about our youngest son. When I became pregnant with this child my doctor, who was a personal friend as well, was very concerned. He was so sure I would not make it through the pregnancy because of complications when our fourth son was born (the surgeon told me a few days after our fourth son’s birth, “We almost lost mother and baby”). My doctor told me (this was before Roe v. Wade) that I could have what he called a therapeutic abortion, it was legal, and it was a “choice” that I could make without permanent damage to my conscience.
Well, I made my “choice” and chose to have the baby. This baby is now 40 years old, an awesome presence and delight. He is a son, husband and father, and I can’t imagine him not being a part of our lives. His wife, who we love just as much as we love our son, is a wonderful lady, and they have given us three grandchildren who have given our sunset years more happiness than we could have imagined. I suppose my point is this: faith that God can see us through the tough times definitely pays. This young man and his family are so fine! Had I chosen to delete this blob from my life (which is what the prevailing notion is about that “thing” in mommy’s tummy), just think what we would have missed!
Given today’s climate of staying in the comfort zone, I admit that if I had to make the choice today, I might choose to take the easy way out, and I’m ashamed to admit it. But oh! how grateful I am that God gave me the faith to carry this baby, and to grant me the PRIVILEGE of being his mother! Perhaps that is what we have forgotten: that to be a mother is to be a part of God’s creative act. And it is indeed a privilege!- By Patricia Nordman

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Loyal subject

An American friend asks, have you seen The Queen with Helen Mirren? I replied,

I am afraid I am too much of a royalist to want to watch it. I have no time for leftist or republican critiques of our monarchy nor for the Dianaolaters. I am sorry two boys lost their mother but other than that I cannot mourn her as a great loss to the nation. I pray that if William is to marry soon, may he find a bride from a stable loving family, not one damaged by divorce as was Diana's. She will need to be strong marrying into a family where the previous generation had 3 divorces out of 4 marriages, the generation before that. one out of two.I do not see republicanism as a threat to our monarchy. The treat is divorce because without stable marriages how can you have a royal FAMILY?

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Afraid in Ipswich

A friend asked me for words of comfort for someone afraid to go out alone in Ipswich after the five recent murders. This is my response.

I was in Bradford at the time of the Ripper when women were afraid to go out and men too. (The men did not want to be stopped by police.) I was in N Ireland at the worst time of the troubles. I have been in London and Kabul when there were bombings. Why was I not afraid?It is not because I am not a worrier. I have often been anxious but not about sudden death.

I believe a firm trust in the providence of God is what keeps me from worry in these circumstances. Life is not a risk free enterprise but neither is it one of mere chance where we may seemingly without reason be subject to evil forces. I trust in the love of God for me shown in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. I believe this is God's world. He is in control and he will protect me. If on the other hand I have to go through difficult experiences, this too is in God's hands and His grace will uphold me.

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Sunday, December 17, 2006

Back to the Puritans

Thanks to Katy's cousin David who has researched her mother's family, I now have 931 people on the family tree, fourteen generations back to 164o. But the Puritan link I should really like to establish is to John Weeks, ejected for the Church of England in 1662 and Bristol's first Presbyterian minister.

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Friday, December 15, 2006

An urban myth?

In 1805 the Royal Navy inflicted a devastating defeat on the French fleet off the western coast of Spain. Realizing that the English were near unbeatable at sea the French attempted to defeat the Navy on land. To this end French saboteurs released flocks of particularly nasty carnivorous bats into Chatham and Woolwich dockyards eastwards of London. The idea being that this pteropine terror would startle dockyard workers causing them to fall into the dock and drown, so demoralizing others and slowing down activity. The bats were sourced from caves in central France later totally destroyed in a little recorded earth tremor together with the bats(seismology was still in its infancy), - so giving rise to the warning "Bat" when they were seen flying at dusk(the exact naval phrase was never written down, probably impolite). The attempt failed because the dock cats were as tenacious as their human counterparts and would not give up their staple diet of mice to the bats (rats were too large for the bats). So the bats moved out, surviving in the countryside in barns and such, almost becoming extinct. Salvation came for them with in the mid 19th century with the building of - railway tunnels. These artificial caves were ideal for the bats, save for the occasional lungful of smoke. As railway building progressed the bats moved closer to London. Initially, they were no problem on the Undergound(1863), as although the running track was in tunnel, the stations were open to the air, eg Bayswater, so bats flying into the stations ahead of the trains could escape upwards. Problems started with the construction of the "tube" railways from 1890. Tunnels were cleaner because of electric haulage, the mice population exploded, but single track, the trains were a close fit within the tunnel, and stations were also totally enclosed, albeit in a larger diameter tunnel. Fortunately for the bats, the tunnel walls were made of recessed iron panels so the bats could safely roost at the side of the tube outside the loading gauge. This enabled the bats to grow to some considerable size before being struck by a train. Two aspects of survival came into play - 1 bats roosting in the approach to the station tunnel had somewhere to escape to, whereas those as the exit could not outfly the train and were probably killed. - 2 where a tunnel was curved it also had to be laterally widened to accommodate the overhang of the train. This widening was was usually more than necessary and so gave the bats a little more space in which to live, so migration to these tunnel positions occurred, and also where mice are abundant eg Bank station. Coincidentally, curved approached tunnels are usually followed by curved station tunnels and therefore curved platforms.Though rarely seen, the bats have proved impossible to exterminate, possibly due to virtually unlimited supplies of mice(reportedly 500,000 in central London), in turn living on food dropped by passengers.Maybe in an attempt to slow down colonization of the Underground no EMU passenger stock has ever been built with horizontal handrails which would allow bats to hitch a ride, especially to a depot. (Imagine the chaos!). The exact origin of the bats was unknown until a french naturalist in London in the late 1890's - the war with France had finished by then(GB 1 - FR 0) - suggested they seemed to have many similarities with a recently extincted species of bat from the Central Massif of France. On examination of the evidence available it was decided that they were the same species which had lived in caves there. These caves were identified as "Les Grottes du Gappe". Now the bats had a name - Gappes, even if it was french. As the bats could be disturbed by the noise of an incoming train at these stations, flying into the station tunnel and startling passengers, maybe causing them to fall onto the track, many people have, due to no apparent reason other than bats - hence the presence of the "suicide pit", the audible warning "Mind the Gap(pes)" is sounded and repeated as the train nears the platform until just prior to departure. Prior to the audible warning the exhortation was written on the platforms in the anglicized form "Mind the Gap" to be similar to "Mind the Step". Since these precautions were taken the bats have adapted again and have found they can fly alongside the train if they keep out of gauge (train-surfing?). This has given rise to another message -"Mind the Gap(pes) between the train and the platform".On hearing either of these warnings passengers should look carefully around them, and if they have long hair tuck it away as a precaution, and step cautiously to or from the platform or train.Of course, "Mind the DO(O)RS" has a completely different origin.

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Thursday, December 14, 2006

Stop the Tram!

It has come to my notice that our esteemed PM's website allows petitions. So I have submitted this one which awaits their approval.

We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to stop any more money being wasted on the plan for a West London Tram.

My explanation is Ken Livingstone is determined to force a tram down the narrow, congested Uxbridge Road despite a public consultation rejecting this folly. All three councils on the route now oppose the plan. It is time that this waste of public money be stopped. Millions of pounds have already been wasted.

Sign up at http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/West-LondonTram/

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Bethany is six!


The real business - presents!






Blowing out the candles on the hedgehog birthday cake. Despite appearances it was not road kill!








Opening cards with Grandma while Hannah looks on.


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Hannah


Of my four grandchildren, Hannah has the real Weeks look about her. She also has the mischievous character.
Having finished her dinner she looked at me and gave a passable imitation of me snoring. It was her way of asking me to make some funny noises. Her way, because so far she is quite inarticulate as was sister Bethany at this age.

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Great was the fall thereof


There was a huge cedar tree next to our church. We thought it was under a council protection order until the men with the chainsaw arrived.

This shows the scale of the tree which we estimate at about 130 years old.

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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Thumb Pie

He takes after his father with this taste.

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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Under the influence.

So Bishop Tom says he will not resign. No surprise there. Principled actions are not the forte of the liberal left.

I have to say if I was so drunk as not to remember what I had done the night before I would consider myself unfit to hold church office. If discovered I might face the wrath of the Statutory Committee of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society. They hold to the notion that if you get drunk outside of a pharmacy you might get drunk in one.

Butler is the sort of liberal the C of E does not need. When he was in Willesden he supported the pro-homosexual policies of the local Ealing Council. He told a clergyman in Southall not to make a fuss when his housing project for those discharged from mental hospital failed to get Council backing. The Christian trust concerned would not employ practising homosexuals so there was no Council funding. With Butler suppressing the voice of the clergyman, he was told by a leading local Anglican vicar that he has abused his episcopal authority. Canterbury came to the same conclusion when Butler recently refused to ordain two evangelicals.

I think Butler should be on his bike .....assuming he is sober enough to ride. I am not against drinking. I am hoping for refreshment from Scotland this Christmas. But I am for self discipline and church discipline. Butler and the Church of England appear to lack both.

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I still hate the banks

Following on from my previous post, I had completed all the forms for a new bank when my bank dropped the charges. It took them a lot longer to reply than to send out the charge letter. They said the charge was raised correctly but on this occasion it would be waived. However in future such charges will stand. Fine. If it happens again I will be off as stated.

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Safe sex?

I think Blair in a recent speech told church leaders they should promote condoms. Sadly none of them seem to have had the nouse to reply that the government too have responsibilities and should like them promote chastity and fidelity. Safe sex with condoms is a misuse of language and logic.,

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A pro-life argument?

Gordon Brown has said child benefit will in future be paid before a child is born. The BBC reports that "Every mother will get additional child benefit in the last months of pregnancy from April 2009". So the unborn child really is a child and should therefore be protected in the womb, not aborted, especially when viable.

Another note from an increased tax. Putting up tax on air travellers will do absolutely nothing for the environment. Green taxes make me see red. They are merely another excuse for the Chancellor to put his greedy fingers ever deeper into my pocket.

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Monday, December 04, 2006

Father Christmas's day job

In the phamacy of course!

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Californian bear

Our friends visiting from Northern California brought me this minature of their wildlife.
.

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Sunday, December 03, 2006

Since I went beta

I have been having problems uploading photos. Flickr is not doing it and when I tried email all I got was this below, an old sig.

Graham J Weeks M.R.Pharm.S.
http://www.christiansquoting.org.uk
10201 quotes 654 topics 2452 authors indexed 903 links
http://www.ipc-ealing.co.uk/ Our church
http://groups.yahoo.com/subscribe/Christiansquoting Daily quotes
http://christianquoter.blogspot.com/ My blog
email - gweeks@btinternet.com
---------------------------------------------------------
Sans Dieu --- rien. - Admiral Dalencourt
---------------------------------------------------------

Well it does at least give a bit of up to date self promotion.

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Friday, December 01, 2006

I hate banks

My bank is charging £25 and more promised because a direct debit came earlier this month than before and I had one more day before a cheque cleared into the account. I regard such iniquitous charging as a reason to move to another bank. Yes I know they are all as bad. Bt to run a business in a way that in no way puts the customer first is a disgrace. They know I have funds in another account, but would they tell me I needed to tranfer funds? No they want to take my money and keep it. Banks are the pits. The only reason cheques take days to clear is because it is in the bank's interest and too many MPs are bank directors.

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It's secularist who are to blame, not Muslims.

A campaign to save the traditions of Christmas from the interference of politically Council leaders were told: 'There seems to be a secularising agenda which fails to understand the concerns of religious communities.
'The approach of some is to exclude mention of any specific religious event or celebration in order to avoid offending anyone. The usual result of such a policy ends up offending most of the population.'
The letter added: 'Any repetition of public bodies and local authorities renaming Christmas, so as not to offend other faith communities, will tend, as in the past, to backfire badly on the Muslim community in particular.
'Sadly we have seen it is they who get the blame - and for something they are not saying.'
The warning from the Council came as public organisations appeared to be redoubling efforts to obliterate Christmas from the calendar or at least remove any Christian element from the celebrations.
The Royal Mail this year has removed any Christian references from its Christmas stamps. Notorious local authority attempts to stamp out Christmas include Birmingham's 1998 decision to name its seasonal celebrations 'Winterval' and Luton's 2001 attempt to change Christmas into a Harry Potter festival by renaming its festive lights 'Luminos'.
The letter from the Forum to town halls comes at a time of deepening anger over attempts by powerful organisations to ban any public reference to Christianity. ........
The letter to councils from the Forum said: 'We are conscious that all in public life wish to be similarly inclusive, but some seem to believe, for instance, that talk about Christmas is offensive to those of other faith communities.
'This is something which we have looked at together on the national Christian Muslim Forum and all of us, both Muslims and Christians, wish that people in public positions would take correct town halls was launched by an influential coalition of Christian and Muslim leaders yesterday.
Leaders of the two faiths warned that attempts to suppress Christmas bring a backlash and Muslims get the blame.
And they said that while Christmas causes no offence to minority faiths, banning it offends almost everybody. .......
The angry rebuke came from the Christian Muslim Forum, a body set up earlier this year with the blessing of the Archbishop of Canterbury and Tony Blair.
The body sent a letter to town halls in the name of Anglican Bishop of Bolton David Gillett and senior Islamic cleric and Government adviser Dr Ataullah Siddiqui. It pleaded for an end to the suppression of Christmas and the restoration of its Christian meaning.
another look at how they deal with religious festivals.'
The two leaders added: 'It is important for the 77 per cent who claim affiliation to one faith or another that these festivals should be seen and recognised, rather than banished from the public sphere.' Daily Mail 1 Dec 2006

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Universities without wisdom

At Exeter the Christian Union had the usual privileges suspended, including funding and free access to university rooms. The students’ guild took the view that the Christian Union’s core beliefs were “too exclusive”. At Edinburgh the Bible was banned from halls of residence after protests from the students’ union, and the Christian Union has been banned from teaching a course about sex and relationships following complaints that it promoted homophobia. At Heriot-Watt the Christian Union has been told it cannot join the university students’ union because its core beliefs discriminate against non-Christians and those of other faiths.
This terrible stupidity and hypocrisy leave one almost speechless. It is bad enough that university students are anxious to censor others and deny them access to proper debate. That is to undermine the very nature of a university, a place where people can think and discuss the unthinkable.
What is worse is that the repression of Christian groups is the height of hypocrisy. For the most unacceptable of what many Christian students believe is pretty much what many Muslims believe, only Muslims go much further. There are plenty of Muslim students, not least among the activists that so alarm the government that it is asking university authorities to spy on them, who believe not just that homosexuality is an abomination but also that women and infidels are inferior. Yet can anyone imagine that any student association would suspend a Muslim group for its homophobia, exclusivity, discrimination against women and infidels.
...........
Last week the Church of England’s secretary general stated without any of the usual emollient Anglican waffle that Prince Charles’s wish for a multi-faith coronation was unacceptable. John Sentamu, the charismatic Archbishop of York, made an impassioned protest against such things earlier this month. He accused the BBC of bias against Christianity while favouring Muslims out of fear of terrorism. And he accused this society more broadly of disliking its own culture. “This country disbelieves in itself in an amazing way,” he said, and he has lamented the destruction of Britain’s Christian heritage by the wilfulness of the chattering classes.
He is right, of course; when you throw the baby Jesus out with the bath water, you lose the cultural water along with the baby to some extent. Sentamu stands for Christian and post-Christian values in the face of competition from other cultures. So too does another Anglican bishop, the eloquent Michael Nazir-Ali, Bishop of Rochester. Both have the credibility of people who are not white natives and both have known hardship and repression.
White native Anglicans are often less impressive; our own Archbishop of Canterbury gives out mixed and muddled messages. If the trumpet gives an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle? Fortunately there are others who are prepared to the battle — the repressed young Christian students, the Ugandan Sentamu, the Asian Nazir-Ali of Muslim antecedents. They understand conviction; they understand what we face.
They are a bizarre army to come to the defence of what’s best about faithless, post-Christian Britain; it has taken this strange collection to convince me that disestablishment of the Anglican church would be a disaster for this country; paradoxically, it would bring down the last best defence here against the evils of religion. We are lucky that there is new life in these Christian soldiers. -
The Sunday Times,November 19, 2006' Hallelujah, they're standing up for Jesus, Minette Marrin

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A one sided view of conversion

While Muslims in the West make efforts to convert people to their faith, traditional Islamic countries have laws which prevent anyone trying to convert Muslims out of their faith. In Saudi Arabia and Malaysia, conversion of Muslims from their faith can lead to jail sentences.
In Algeria on March 15, the parliament introduced a bill which prevents anyone from apostasising from Islam to another faith. The bill was passed into law, and allows imprisonment of from two to five years and a fine of from $6,000 to $12,000 (US) for anyone "urging or forcing or tempting, to convert a Muslim to another religion."
Morocco has a similar law, which states that "anyone who employs incitements to shake the faith of a Muslim or to convert him to another religion" can be given a fine, and imprisoned for a maximum of six months.
Today, according to the Washington Post, Moroccan authorities state that a 64-year old German tourist has been jailed for six months and fined 500 dirhams ($60). The German man, Sadek Noshi Yassa, who is of Egyptian extraction, was sentenced on Tuesday evening at a court in Agadir on the southwestern coast.
The conviction came after news that some Christians had launched a secret campaign to convert thousands of Muslims to Christianity.
In neighboring Algeria, the March anti-conversion law had been introduced following an increase in Christian conversions in al-Qabayel in the east of Algeria. Before its independence in 1962, Algeria had hundreds of thousands of Christians, with 110 priests and 170 monks. Now less than 11,000 Christians live there.
In other news from Morocco, an imam was arrested on Monday in the northern city of Tetouan, accused of recruiting young men to become suicide bombers in Iraq, states Associated Press. The imam, named as Abdelilah, led prayers at a mosque in Mezouak, a slum on the outskirts of Tetouan city.
The interior ministry in Morocco has claimed on Monday that authorities have arrested 317 suspected Islamic radicals since August this year.
- Adrian Morgan, Spero News

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