Saturday, February 04, 2006
Friday, February 03, 2006
Truepeers sent this in. Please copy and paste the url below for the proper link.
If I draw a tree and call it Mohammed is it a picture of Mohammed? If I put the name "Mohammed" (or better: "this picture of a tree is a picture of Mohammed") under the picture, is it a picture of Mohammed? If, having done so, I erase the name "Mohammed," is it a picture of Mohammed or a picture of a tree? I would argue that there is no difference between the tree and the picture of some human-like person with the name "Mohammed" or interpretive surrogate phrase under it.
I put these interesting conundums in order to isolate the utter arbitrariness of the notion of "picturing Mohammed." How much of the "idolatry" involved is the consequence of something intrinsic to the picture, and how much of it is a matter of someone drawing a (potentially rather complicated set of semiotic) conclusion that it is a picture of Mohammed and therefore "idolatrous"?
From another perspective: Does anyone know what Mohammed looked like? If you don't know what Mohammed looked like, how can you be sure that a picture of "Mohammed" is a picture of Mohammed, and therefore idolatrous?
This is worth thinking about, because it isolates the functioning political point in this whole silly business: something will make you mad if you decide that that something is something that will make you mad. It it wasn't the picture of "Mohammed" or a Koran down the toilet, it would always be something else. Muslims are angry because anger is what they do with with their lives, and of course anger is like one end of an electrical cord: it must be connected to another terminus for the anger joice to flow.
Wednesday, February 01, 2006
TruePeers, of YARGB, and Dag, of No Dhimmitude, are promoting the Blue Scarf Revolution: This Thursday at 7 pm local time, I will be meeting Dag of the No Dhimmitude blog, for a discussion of free speech, multiculturalism, and Islam, at a McDonald's restaurant at Main and Terminal in Vancouver, British Columbia (the McDonald's on the southwest corner, not the one across the street in the train station).
Thanks to Dag's blogging and to the Revolution Bleue movement in France that has emerged in response to elite media and government crack downs on Republican free speech, in the wake of the recent riots and the more general desire in many western countries to ban anti-Islamic and other forms of politically-incorrect speech (on this see, for example, Wretchard's recent post), there will be people meeting around the world in McDonald's restaurants and wearing blue scarves to identify each other and to show sympathy with those in France who are wearing blue scarves in public opposition to their present regime.
While we Canadians are yet unsure if we share fully in the goals of the French blue scarves - a recent anti-Masonic comment at their blog raised eyebrows because of the proximity of anti-Masonic and antisemitic rhetoric historically... but Freemasonry in France is a frankly political and anti-clerical movement, perhaps deserving some criticism, we don't know - it strikes us as nonetheless important for westerners to get out in public and find their voices in face of the various postmodern ideologies that would limit speech in the name of the supposed victims of free speech.
And it is important for people to discuss this issue in terms of the ongoing conflict between the west and Islam - or Islamic radicalism, if you prefer.
What, for example, is the duty of western men and women to the Islamic women who are forced (in our opinion) to wear extreme forms of head covering, like the Burka, in our westetern cities, a symbol of their more general oppression under Islam and related forms of family life?
How do we contest the multicultural ideolgies that would defend "the choice" to wear the burka, as a "right"?
This question of defending women enslaved by religion, family, and multicultural ideology is the specific topic for our meeting this Thursday. If you cannot join us, have a look at Dag's blog - especially his archives for last week - to gain some sense of the larger blue scarf movement and consider organizing a meeting at your local McDonald's. Just get the word out in the blogosphere when you will be at McDonald's, and see if any blue scarves show up. It worked for Dag.
Dag chose McDonald's as our meeting place, not simply because they are ubiquitous and you can sit for hours with a cup of coffee. In their ubiquity McDonald's also symbolize a western secular alternative to the sacred meeting places of the Islamic world. And because the target of our discussions is not simply Islamic radicalism, but its present tactical marriage with imperialistic western multiculturalism, McDonald's is the perfect symbol since it is so often a scandal for the elitist anti-American leftists who know what is best for all of us and who would restrict our free speech and stomachs accordingly.
Of course, it is when the mouths are closed that violence is most certain, and the present moves to restrict free speech are sure to reduce the security of Muslims in the west, not strengthen it. Because we are not against Muslims as people (we are out to love and defend the better side of humanity in all of us) but simply want a venue to meet and criticize aspects of both Islamic religion and postmodern western ideologies, we expect and will welcome into our meetings people of all faiths and backgrounds.
Mohammed heard the voice of a goat in the valley. It captured his attention. He was, in fact, deeply impressed. He ran back to his wife, the aged Khadija, and told her that he'd heard the voice of a goat speaking to him. She, being slightly deaf, thought he said he'd heard 'the voice of a god.' "Yeah," he thought, "that's what I meant." And the stone wheels of Mo's mind started turning.
Mo talked his nephew Ali into believing the revised 'goat story' and even convinced some other guys in the pit stop at Meccah. Being the guys who could never get a date, they followed Mo to Medina and set up shop as the new kids in town, financed by a bit of the ol' ultra violence, a bit of caravan robbing, a bit of snake oil sales, a bit of the ol' time religion. Mo found a new career. He laughed all the way to the river bank.
Not one to think small, he decided he could pull this scam on the whole world, from one end of the Arabian Peninsula to the other. And he did, cashiering the old dame for a brand new six year old on the way.
The rest, as they say, is histrionics. One day back in the back in the 21st century a Danish newspaper published cartoons of Mo.
Oh, Mo! He and his buddies were not happy. They laughed, they cried, they crawled on their bellies like snakes. They raged, howled, beat their chests and a couple of Danes, and held their breaths till they turned blue in the face. They this and they that and they la di dah. Did we mention that Mo was not happy? No, no one really cared.
Mo.'s scam fizzed because of the great cartoon kerfuffle. People around the world started sending out cartoons of this buffoon and soon the balloon was a little bit of bladder in the sand. Lo, Mo was no mo'.
Tomorrow's history lesson: Why Palestinians are like garden slugs.
The reason Muslims invented math, geometry, and maps, and the reason they discovered the Earth is "egg shape" is to enable them to face Mecca from east to west and west to east simultaneously, as one will see from the photograph above. It's all very scientific.
The Muslim invetntion of stealing the Indian invention of the place-holder, zero, well, that was for reasons of self-description.
Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Please excuse our slow loading and occasional freezing up. We seem to have some dissatisfied customers. We will do what we can to fend them off and continue to bring you the latest and most tasteful cartoons of Mohammed, child molestor and murderer, that we can find. Thanks for your patience and understanding.
Sincerely, Dag and friends.
Not all French are scum. Not all French are scum. Not all French are scum.
Please, French friends and citizens, stand up and fight against this outrage now. Show your visible displeasure at Carrefour. Do it now before the world thinks you are scum.
Danes try to calm Muslim rage
By Dan Bilefsky International Herald Tribune
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 2006
The Danish government stepped up efforts Tuesday to curb the damage caused by the publication of cartoons in a Danish newspaper linking the Prophet Muhammad to terrorism. But the moves failed to allay Muslim anger as retailers boycotted Danish goods in the Middle East and protesters in Gaza set fire to photos of Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen. The economic fallout continued, with the French supermarket chain Carrefour announcing it was pulling Danish goods from its shelves in Arab countries.
Can a six year old girl and a 57 year old man find true love and real romance in the Arabian desert?
Follow this tale of betrayal, murder, rape, and mayhem as it spreads from the 7th century caravan stop at the oasis of Mecca to the wilds of Medina where the outcast Mohammed, fleeing the wrath of his family and tribe, gathers up a nephew and begins the long and perilous journey to fame and prophet, finding along the way the love of his life, the six year old Aisha.
This story will tear your heart out.
Egyptians are so offended by the cartoons of Mohammed that Egypt refuses to take money from Denmark; but not to be outdone, Saudi Arabians are refusing to take insulin. Boy, that'll show those Danes.
The Egyptian parliament's Economic Committee refused to discuss a $72.5 million loan from Denmark to Egypt, with newspapers quoting lawmakers as saying they do not want to cooperate with a country that has insulted the prophet.
Hardest hit by the boycott was Danish-Swedish dairy product maker Arla Foods, with annual sales of $487 million in the Middle East. The world's biggest maker of insulin, Novo Nordisk, also said it was affected.
Monday, January 30, 2006
Honourable Fellow Citizens of the Muslim World
Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten is a strong proponent of democracy and freedom of religion. The newspaper respects the right of any human being to practise his or her religion. Serious misunderstandings in respect of some drawings of the Prophet Mohammed have led to much anger and, lately, also boycott of Danish goods in Muslim countries.
Please allow me to correct these misunderstandings.
On 30 September last year, Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten published 12 different cartoonists' idea of what the Prophet Mohammed might have looked like. The initiative was taken as part of an ongoing public debate on freedom of expression, a freedom much cherished in Denmark.
In our opinion, the 12 drawings were sober. They were not intended to be offensive, nor were they at variance with Danish law, but they have indisputably offended many Muslims for which we apologize.
Since then a number of offensive drawings have circulated in The Middle East which have never been published in Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten and which we would never have published, had they been offered to us. We would have refused to publish them on the grounds that they violated our ethical code.