January 2009

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Although I am disappointed, I can’t say I’m surprised. Obama has sent a new peace envoy to deal with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict within a few days of entering office, which is nice I guess. But there still isn’t any sign that he will be taking any definitive action to curb Israel’s continued illegal and immoral actions in the Palestinian territories. It remains utterly astonishing to me that Israel can flagrantly kill thousands of innocent civilians in a so-called attempt to weed out terrorists, seriously injure goodness knows how many more, destroy Palestinian buildings and infrastructure (including their totally and utterly outrageous policy of bulldozing Palestinian homes), erect barriers in Palestinian territory which prevent them from traveling freely and getting to work (so destroying their economy), and of course, illegally occupy Palestinian land, leaving thousands of Palestinians as refugees in their own homeland. What is even more outrageous however is the US government not only doesn’t condemn this, it effectively condones it, by not only supplying far more financial aid to Israel than any other country, but by supplying them with far and away the most military aid as well!

I have been very happy with many of the actions Obama has taken since entering office, particularly by so swiftly ordering the closure of Guantanamo Bay and a pull out of Iraq. Yet while it is true that he made no specific promises regarding Israel, I was desperately hoping to see a dramatic change of US government policy on this issue. Once again though, this was only a hope, not an expectation—the power the Jewish lobby wield in Washington remains as strong as ever, and Obama still has to deal with congress. It is amazing how powerful they are actually, given what a small percentage of the US population they are. I guess it shows that dollars mean a lot more than votes in America. Read the rest of this entry »

Bye Bye Bush!

The day so many of us have been waiting for has finally arrived! And here’s how I celebrated the end of the Bush administration—we originally tried to follow Loverboy’s idea of using balloons, but they kept exploding whenever we tried to do anything with them! So we decided to shoot me tearing up images of Rice, Cheney and Bush instead, which fortunately worked pretty well I think. As promised, we’ve also posted an extended, extra naughty version for my web site members, and I blow a kiss to everyone who entered my win a kiss from me for Christmas competition. I received emails from a few people who said they were trying to think of a winning entry, but didn’t end up posting any! So I guess a lot of people were so intent on winning that they didn’t enter at all if they didn’t think they could. But as I ended up blowing a kiss to every entrant, I would have given you a kiss anyway. :-) (As with all of our videos, it is in MPEG4 format, so you’ll need either QuickTime or 3ivx to view it.)

On a more serious note, I would sincerely like to wish President Obama all the best for his term in the White House—let’s hope he is able to achieve at least some of the things he has set out to do.

Well I think it’s high time we had some good news, and if you’re an atheist like me, this certainly is that. :-) The atheist bus campaign I wrote about last year has now been officially launched, after raising over £135,000—breaking the original target by over 2400%! This means that instead of having only 30 atheist buses as originally planned, there will now be 800 of them rolling across the UK! There will also be 1000 tube cards running on the London Underground featuring four famous atheist quotations from Douglas Adams, Albert Einstein, Emily Dickinson and Katharine Hepburn. They are now even seeking suggestions for the slogan for a second wave of atheist buses in April.

Even better, the campaign has now gone global! Spain, Italy and France will be launching buses with their own translations of the original slogan “There’s probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life”, and even buses in Washington DC have been carrying the slogan “Why believe in a God? Just be good for goodness’ sake” for well over a month now. Canada and Ireland will be running the campaign as well. However, I must now reveal what is for me some very sad and shameful news: The Atheist Foundation of Australia‘s attempts to run the slogan “Atheism—celebrate reason!” on buses here in Australia have been refused by the company responsible for public metropolitan transport advertising across most of Australia (APN Outdoors). However, they are taking their case to the Tasmanian Anti-discrimination Commissioner, as their bus advertising company (Metro Tasmania) is state owned. This is truly a shameful situation for a country as free and progressive as Australia.

What We Are

I’m still feeling outraged by the situation in Gaza, so rather than posting an angry diatribe, I thought I’d post this clever, lighthearted video instead. The whole thing is very true, but the bit about why we decide to start killing eachother has particular relevance to the insanity going on over there I think.

It is with mixed feelings that I wish all my readers and fans a happy new year. On the one hand, we have much to look forward to in 2009, not the least of which being the end of what really has been one of the worst disasters to hit the US (and indeed the entire world), the Bush administration. Still, I just can’t help feeling outraged right now at the unrestrained carnage being undertaken by Israel in Gaza. I just cannot comprehend how the US government has been able to continuously use its veto power to prevent the UN from taking action to stop Israel’s aggression in Palestine. I can only hope the Obama administration will join the rest of the world in condemning Israel’s actions, and making them comply with international law—it is critical not only for the Palestinians, but for the peace and security of the entire world. Indeed, I suspect Israel may be doing this now because they believe they won’t be able to get away with it after January 20—we can only hope that is indeed the case.