Thursday, October 21, 2004

Lite blogging after this

The lads at Crooked Timber are not very keen on evolutionary psychology and are reasonably bright but they will have to do a bit better than claiming EP argues girls "weren't cut out for" sports.

And since Public Address has Zaoui as a guest its interesting to see what he has to say -
...Islam is not simply a system of belief and worship, separated from other systems, which are the concern of nonreligious authorities administering nonreligious laws; it is the whole of life, and its rules include civil, criminal, and even what we would call constitutional law.
If liberals here in NZ want to support some one who does not believe in the separation of Church and State then that's their choice but perhaps they should moderate their criticism of the influence of certain Christian church groups in NZ. Or maybe its OK if you're a Muslim fundamentalist. I'd be very interested to see Destiny Church or the Maxim Institute appear on the Public Address web site.

On TV tonight Queer Nation will have an item on the nonsensical tax exemption status of religious groups. There may also be a bit on how the Australian government avoided recognising the Raelians as a religion. It went something like -"because you believe that there actually are aliens out there then you are not a religion. To be a religion you have to believe in something you know not to be true".

Sinclair Broadcast is some conservative media outfit in the US who have come in for flak for wanting to run one doco critical of Kerry. I would have thought such criticism was warranted until I saw what the Sundance Channel has planned for the lead up to the elections. Not just one doco, a whole season of anti-Bush material.

No-one's going to force people to watch either sets of programming so I don't see what the fuss is all about.


Blogger Rich said...

Both Brian Tamaki and Ahmed Zaoui seem to believe, to some extent, that their religious values should be imposed as part of civil law. I disagree utterly with this (for one thing, it seems to be rather inconsistent with a belief that the righteous will get their reward in heaven).

Although I disagree with these views, I don't think they justify jailing either party. If there is evidence that either Tamaki or Zaoui are plotting acts of violence to advance their worldview, then they should be tried for that in a proper court.

Zaoui has been found by the Refugee Status Authority to be a genuine refugee, and as such has a legal right to remain in NZ. (Mr Tamaki is of course indigenous to these islands). Jailing Zaoui without presenting evidence is an act of tyranny, pure and simple, just as jailing Tamaki would be.

21 October 2004 at 1:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's a big difference between supporting someones right to hold whatever vierws they want, aand sharing them. Are you suggesting no-one should be allowed to advocate the union of church and state?

21 October 2004 at 3:39 PM  
Blogger Blair said...

To divert from the topic a bit here, what do you call a criticism of tax exemption for religious groups by a special interest TV programme which receives its funding via a government grant? I believe "chutzpah" is the correct term. "Hypocrisy" also comes to mind, but that may be a tad cruel...

22 October 2004 at 9:18 PM  
Blogger STC said...

There are two kinds of argument going on: I've talked with Zaoui's lawyers and campaigners, and they advocate very different points of view.

The lawyers point to how weak the legislation for holding Zaoui is: Made by the national party, it doesn't have very strong definitions of what kind of person is really a danger to New Zealand or what kinds of rights they have if they are held under it. Lianne Dalziel herself expressed extreme concern at the time of it's passing that it could be used in bad ways. It seems clear that the government is using the legislation at it's worst, and that a lot of the blame surrounding Zaoui's imprisonment lies with the government.

Eamonn Deverall, one of his main campaigners, rebuts the points about Zaoui's character and history. I don't, but I don't accept the points made about being a raving Islamo-fascist either.

What people who are calling for Zaoui's release are saying is that the man has not had his day in court. To not campaign for him to get justice because the media has told they think he might be a bad little Islamic punk is just as bad as locking up people you don't like because you don't like them

24 October 2004 at 12:47 PM  

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