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Monday, 13 February 2006
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UK readers, take a trip down memory lane. The BBC  is featuring classic public information films from the last 60 years.  Any US readers who consider the English to be rather quaint with poor dress sense and plummy accents will find that this is really true.

"Today's film is a real treasure. It's got everything you could want from a public information film - a slogan, dated costumes, a bit of nostalgia - but is also unintentionally amusing.

The Green Cross Code was introduced in 1971, with "splink" as a supposedly handy mnemonic. But surprise, surprise children found it too complicated. The Times of 10 July, 1974 (before this Pertwee film was released) reported that in a survey of 595 children aged between seven and 15, precisely none could remember the drill in full. Furthermore, only 18% of children chose the safest place to cross the road. "

"Splink" has to be the worst mnemonic ever.  Not only is it meaningless, but the individual letters don't stand for anything that makes sense. The video clip is a must, though, if only for those tank tops.

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Posted on 02/13/2006 8:54 AM by Mary Jackson
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Sunday, 12 February 2006
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Two very good articles from Theodore Dalrymple on the cartoon controversy.

In the first, he contrasts the spineless response of the British and Americans to the courageous and robust stance of the French:

The French have emerged in this crisis as far stauncher and more fearless and unapologetic defenders of freedom than the Americans or the British. In this instance, they have stuck to an important principle without calculation of immediate interest or even short-term consequences. They find the equivocations of the Anglo-Saxons strange, spineless, and reprehensible, and in this instance they are absolutely right.

True. It has been argued that there are concerns for British and American troops in Iraq. Still, they were spineless. According to a poll in The Sunday Times, '86% of people think the protests were “a gross overreaction”. By 56% to 29% respondents said it was right to publish the cartoons in Denmark and republish them elsewhere.' So why do our leaders not reflect the wishes of the British public?

The second article argues that appeasement of Muslim extremists means surrendering Western liberties. Furthermore, it achieves nothing:

The supposition that the kind of people who call publicly for beheadings, or tell Europe to prepare itself for the real holocaust (the connection between Muslim extremism and Holocaust denial being a very strong one), will feel placated by a few expressions of sympathy for their supposedly offended feelings is psychologically preposterous and demonstrably false empirically. It is the reductio ad absurdum of the Clintonian propensity to feel other people’s pain as a substitute for a policy.

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Posted on 02/12/2006 9:37 AM by Mary Jackson
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More than 4,000 UK mainstream Muslims joined a protest against controversial cartoons satirising their Prophet Muhammad in London's Trafalgar Square,

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Full speech here .. Berlin is rich in the history of ideological challenges to the open society. This is the city where a wall kept people within the
Today's Telegraph leader argues that we should be celebrating the abolition of slavery rather than continuing to wallow in guilt:   The bicentenary

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Check out the photo display of recent cartoon protests over at Jawa Report.
The National Review editors have evidently joined Tom Friedman and others in a call to nominate the Ayatollah Sistani for a Nobel Peace Prize. 

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NER's Hugh Fitzgerald writes at Jihad Watch, ending with: Arab Muslims suffered far less from European colonialism than did any other people in the
 There I was reading the obituary to Akira Ifukube, who composed the music to the Godzilla films and who has just died at the age of 91

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Here's a strange story from The Telegraph:   A woman was yesterday celebrating the end of a seven-year battle to be removed from Spain's register
Jackie Mason in "The Spectator" (subscription required) reflects on why Jews don''t kill over cartoons:  I never saw a Jew going

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The BBC reports on a new video of Jill Carroll pleading "Please just do whatever they want... There is a very short time," says Ms Carroll,

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"Dutch MP says necessary to criticise Islam," from Reuters: Ayaan Hirsi Ali praised newspapers in many countries which have printed the cartoons,
New York radio host Joey Reynolds is one of the the very few liberal talk show hosts in America, and he is also one of the first few to understand

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In another excellent essay from Wolfgang Bruno, he ends with the following: Binyamin Netanyahu has stated that Muslims don't hate the West because
Also blogged at Jihad Watch: "We can get by without the petrol, and return to our days of yore. We will make do with milk and dates. We will drink

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Not long ago I came across the coinage "googlebuggered", defined as "the realisation that there is no website which is going to back up
Boris Johnson, writing in The Telegraph, makes some good points about the British Left, arguing that they have "changed their tactics, but not their

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