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Author Topic: Is there a Spin Doctor in the House?
Tommy_Paine
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 214

posted 02 January 2002 10:11 AM      Profile for Tommy_Paine     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
"Saudis, Iran allege Islam under attack

By AP

RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA -- Saudi Arabia and Iran have issued a joint statement condemning what they call a "vicious media campaign" in the West against Islam since the Sept. 11 terror attacks on the United States.

In the statement, both deeply Muslim countries pledged to confront the western image of Islam and to make known the religion stands for peace and justice.

"The two countries condemn the vicious media campaign against the lofty principles and values of Islam and consider it a conspiracy to deface the image of Islam and to weaken the Islamic and Arab nations," said the statement, which was issued by the Iranian parliament and the Saudi Shura Council. The council, an appointed body that advises the Saudi monarch, is the closest thing Saudi Arabia has to a parliament.

The statement came at the end of a visit by Iranian speaker Mahdi Karrubi, and it followed a line Saudi diplomats and newspaper editorials have pursued in recent weeks.

The Gulf Co-operation Council, which groups Saudi Arabia and five other gulf states, called this week for non-Muslims "not to hold Islam responsible for actions and practices which are very distant from the spirit of Islam."

Saudi Arabia has been criticized in western media for not doing enough to support the U.S.-led anti-terrorism campaign. The Bush administration has said it is pleased with Saudi co-operation"


Okay.

I won't argue that the western media, both entertainment and/or news has endeavored to show Arabic people's in a less than flattering light.

Ah, but you know, as good a spin doctors the west have-- and I've seen some in the media even try to push Oliver North as an all American hero, or Newt (Newt?) Gingrich as a man of integrity-- I'm not sure they are up to the task of putting a good spin on lopping people's heads off.

Not only that, I doubt the western media could even put a positive spin on tying a young woman to a stake and stoning her to death.

Even if they said it was Hillary Clinton.

Executing people by cutting their heads off for "sodomy", or rendering women helpless and throwing rocks at them is certainly a deffinition of "Peace" and "Justice" this Westener is just too ignorant, I guess, to understand.

I await enlightenment.


From: The Alley, Behind Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 478

posted 02 January 2002 10:23 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Tommy, I'm not sure what you're opening a discussion on here. Did you want to discuss the deeply decadent and corrupt regime that is Saudi Arabia? Or did you want to discuss Islam?
From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Tommy_Paine
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Babbler # 214

posted 02 January 2002 10:32 AM      Profile for Tommy_Paine     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Would the Saudis see a distinction? Are they asking us to see one?
From: The Alley, Behind Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
Babbler # 560

posted 02 January 2002 10:35 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I guess the point (which I agree with) is that it's pretty damn hypocritical for Iran and Saudi Arabia, two of the nastiest, mysogynist regimes in the world, to be saying that the West is perverting the peace-loving virtues of Islam. It's as if those governments are trying to say, "We're not like those nasty bombers - we're peace-loving people in the true spirit of Islam" when in fact they as governments chop off people's hands for stealing, stone people to death for adultery and other crimes, torture people to death for political dissent, etc.

BTW, I find it interesting, Tommy, that you would mention that women are tied to the stake and stoned. In Iran, from what I've heard and read, men are buried up to their waists when stoned, and women are buried up to their shoulders. They are wrapped in a white sheet before being put in the hole. The charming reason for this difference between men and women is because there's a traditional rule that if the person can work their way out of the hole while being stoned, the stoning has to stop. From what I hear, though, that rule is not heeded the few times people DO manage to get out of the hole.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 02 January 2002 10:36 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Which Saudis? C'mon, Tommy -- we're talking Big Power politics here ... Ruling classes, oppressed classes, comfy Western professional collaborators -- really ugly stuff, Tommy ... and that's long before we get to talk about Islam.
From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Captaffy
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posted 02 January 2002 10:47 AM      Profile for Captaffy        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
You can't blame a corrupt Saudi government, or the evil Iranians for chopping people's hands off for stealing. That is the punishment under Islamic law.
From: Ottawa | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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Babbler # 560

posted 02 January 2002 10:52 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Those are mostly punishments under Judeo-Christian law too if you want to get right down to it. But most Jews and Christians would not support that kind of fundamentalist application of the religious laws. The Islamic government regimes in the Middle East are similar to the type of regimes we would have here if fundamentalist idiots like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson had their way. But that doesn't mean Christianity as practiced by millions of Christians would be at fault. It would be a perversion of the spirit of Christianity.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 02 January 2002 11:36 AM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Those are mostly punishments under Judeo-Christian law too if you want to get right down to it.

I've looked through the Old and the New Testament, and I cannot find any verses that prescribe this punishment for stealing.

Exodus 22 says that a thief must pay restitution, and if he cannot pay then he will be sold into slavery. Nothing about lopping off hands.

Maybe there's more in the Talmud, but I can't find it in the Bible.

[ January 02, 2002: Message edited by: Kneel before MediaBoy ]


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 02 January 2002 11:39 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yes, that one about cutting off hands is the reason why I wrote "mostly". The other punishments like stoning for adultery, etc., still stand I think.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 02 January 2002 11:45 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Then again, there is that part in one of Jesus' sermons:

"If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed, rather than having two hands, to go to hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched."
(Mark 9:43)


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 02 January 2002 12:09 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Does that count as "law"?

(Regarding adultery, I couldn't find a reference to stoning, though Leviticus does indeed say that anyone found guilty of adultery shall be put to death.)

[ January 02, 2002: Message edited by: Kneel before MediaBoy ]


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 02 January 2002 12:14 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Nope. It doesn't count as anything as far as I'm concerned, especially since it was said in the spirit of self-moderation instead of punishment imposed on you from authorities. But I just thought I would throw it in there on a lark.

Also, how much do you want to bet that we could have a pool on babble for how long it would take Pat Robertson, after getting power in the US (in his wildest dreams) to use that and other Bible quotes out of context to come up with barbaric punishments for people who don't fit his image of a "real Christian"?


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 02 January 2002 12:18 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Since I don't know Pat Robertson very well, I can't really comment on that.
From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 02 January 2002 12:21 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Oh, you MUST meet him!

http://www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/7027/quotes.html


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Victor Von Mediaboy
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posted 02 January 2002 12:29 PM      Profile for Victor Von Mediaboy   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Wow.

quote:
"You say you're supposed to be nice to the Episcopalians and the Presbyterians and the Methodists and this, that, and the other thing. Nonsense. I don't have to be nice to the spirit of the Antichrist. I can love the people who hold false opinions but I don't have to be nice to them."--Pat Robertson, The 700 Club, January 14, 1991

I guess that leaves me out. I tend to lean towards the methodist side.


From: A thread has merit only if I post to it. So sayeth VVMB! | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 02 January 2002 12:33 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yeah, he's a real psycho all right. And he ran for the Republican nomination too (was it republican or libertarian? I think it was Republican, correct me if I'm wrong, babblers). This guy got a lot of financial support from the Bible Belt to run a campaign that they hoped would end at the white house. Pretty scary.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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Babbler # 478

posted 02 January 2002 02:55 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I've got nothing against discussions of fundamentalism -- actually, epic-heroic or romantic cultures or cultural phases are interesting topics in poetics, and I swear I'm a gonna write about that one day soon.

But wouldn't it be more interesting here, since the topic has ariz, to develop a calm and careful description of Saudi Arabia and similar regimes, what we know about how they work, where they came from, how responsible for their political, social, and cultural distortions Europeans and North Americans still are -- ?

All I can offer is anecdotal knowledge -- but of a kind many North Americans must have -- of numbers of medical professionals, engineers, accountants, etc, who have for the last couple of generations been able to think of Saudi Arabia as a neat place to go to work for a few years at splendidly high wages, never taxed there nor in the NA/European home countries, live like princes in luxury compounds, cluck over the primitive natives, and then swan back home with the tidy little nest-eggs that would be so much harder to acquire in a country that even pretended to citizen control of its resources ...

Oh -- and there's the little matter too of the First World War, and the treaties of Versailles, and all those clever overgrown British and French public-school boys who had so much fun playing chess with the wretched of the earth eighty years ago ... Not to mention their transatlantic heirs ...


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
rasmus
malcontent
Babbler # 621

posted 02 January 2002 04:01 PM      Profile for rasmus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

[ January 03, 2002: Message edited by: rasmus_raven ]


From: Fortune favours the bold | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
SHH
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Babbler # 1527

posted 02 January 2002 04:58 PM      Profile for SHH     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here's one British Muslim's take down of some recent Saudi sophistry. Brutal, but I suspect, largely on target. Sorry I couldn't help TPaine.
From: Ex-Silicon Valley to State Saguaro | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
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Babbler # 490

posted 02 January 2002 04:58 PM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Yeah, he's a real psycho all right. And he ran for the Republican nomination too (was it republican or libertarian? I think it was Republican, correct me if I'm wrong, babblers). This guy got a lot of financial support from the Bible Belt to run a campaign that they hoped would end at the white house. Pretty scary.

Yup, it was the Repubs in, I think, 1992. The man is the epitome of the Holy Rollers in the USA who have influence and sway over about one-third of the population. Pat Robertson's 700 Club alone is reputed to reach approximately 20 million people every time it airs.

Rack Jite tried to transcribe some of Pat Robertson's drivel. It came out something like the following:

quote:
WE NEED $20 A MONTH FROM EACH AND EVERY VIEWER WHICH IS PARAMOUNT IN STOPPING THIS REPEAT OF HISTORY! JUST LIKE WHAT NAZI GERMANY DID TO THE JEWS, SO LIBERAL AMERICA IS NOW DOING TO EVANGELICAL CHRISTIANS! IT IS NO DIFFERENT! IT IS THE SAME THING! IT IS HAPPENING ALL OVER AGAIN! IT IS THE DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS, THE LIBERAL BIAS MEDIA AND THE HOMOSEXUALS WHO WANT TO DESTROY ALL CHRISTIANS! THEY HAVE DECLARED OPEN SEASON ON CHRISTIANS! WHOLESALE ABUSE AND DISCRIMINATION AND THE WORST BIGOTRY DIRECTED TOWARD ANY GROUP IN AMERICA TODAY! MORE TERRIBLE THAN ANYTHING SUFFERED BY ANY MINORITY IN OUR HISTORY!

As you can see, Pat Robertson is a nut. Hell, he thinks the Washington Post is written by homosexuals.

Ban the Holy Rollers.


From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
SHH
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 1527

posted 02 January 2002 05:13 PM      Profile for SHH     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Michelle, Doc, et al: If it’s any comfort please know that the Religious Right, and the Pat and Jerry types are all but finished. They have so marginalized themselves as to be shown the joke they always were. And the Christian Coalition, although still a force in some areas, is losing steam like a popped balloon. (They’re getting old, just don’t have that energy, and the kids haven’t signed on).

Interestingly, the same “housecleaning” is also happening on the Left. Both sides of the spectrum seem to be less tolerant of their wacky extremes lately. As an extreme moderate, I think that’s good.


From: Ex-Silicon Valley to State Saguaro | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 478

posted 02 January 2002 05:23 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Sigh. I am still hoping that someone more knowledgeable than I will teach me something about the complex colonial reality that Saudi Arabia is.

I did manage to turn up on my unschooled lonesome the following interesting facts:

- at least 25 per cent of the population of 22 million are foreigners.

- No country in the world has a higher level of financial tranfers from migrant workers to their home country: these tranfers amount to US $5 billion every year.

- KSA was the world's biggest (non-OECD) weapons buyer in 1997, spending US $11 billion of its US $18 billion defence budget on arms imports.

- In KSA there are no resident foreign press correspondents.


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
rasmus
malcontent
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posted 02 January 2002 05:40 PM      Profile for rasmus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Skdadl -- this is starting to seem like work, isn't it? -- I will come back later to this thread to write something, if I can.
From: Fortune favours the bold | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Tommy_Paine
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posted 02 January 2002 08:19 PM      Profile for Tommy_Paine     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Thanks, SHH, for that link, it was quite interesting.

And, let us not forget that it was Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwel who blamed homosexuals and abortionists for the the terrorist attack of Sept. 11th, as they caused God to "lift his curtain of protection."


Besides the immediate hypocrisy of the Saudi and Iranian governments, I think it's time we started asking if Islam is in fact concerned with "Peace and Justice".

And, while we are at it, let's not be hypocritical ourselves, and exclude the other two religions of the book, Judiasm and Christianity.

I hear this so often, that these religions are all about peace and love etc. If this is true, would not the place where these three loving, peaceful philosophies meet be the most peaceful place on earth?

Jerusalem?

If anything, the western media has been forever charitable to not only Islam, but all religions.

I know the counter to this. That those who rule in the religious dictatorships of Saudi Arabia, Iran and other places are not representative of the true Islam, and the millions of people who practice Islam in peace, just like their counterparts in Christianity and Judaism.

However, it strikes me that this isn't an effect of the religion itself, but of secular governments that have defanged the religion.


From: The Alley, Behind Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
SHH
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posted 03 January 2002 06:41 PM      Profile for SHH     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
You’re welcome TPaine. And I couldn’t agree more with your comment about the secular state “defanging” the Theocrat wanna-bees. The more I read on this the more I come across that same observation by those much more knowledgeable than me. More specifically, that in order for the Islamic societies to prosper, they too are going to have to undergo a Reformation of sorts, which should, at the very least, institutionally separate their church and state. Something along those lines appears to be brewing in Iran if I’m getting the straight skinny.
From: Ex-Silicon Valley to State Saguaro | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged

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