Entries from October 2007 ↓

Rational Choice Theory and the Palestinian issue

Bruce Bueno de Mesquita is one of the more interesting political scientists around today. de Mesquita essentially applies rational choice theory to model conflict and international politics — and with surprisingly accurate results. The latest GOOD Magazine features an interesting profile on de Mesquita and his work.

As the article notes, the CIA compared their models and intelligence against de Mesquita’s model and found that his model was accurate 90 percent of the time; and another study found his model predicted EU policy decisions with a remarkable 97 percent accuracy. It is therefore interesting to note de Mesquita’s proposed solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:

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Garages of Hate

Sydney’s Fadi Rahman is at it yet again with more outrageous claims in today’s news:

Foreign ideologues attempting to recruit young Muslims could lead to an Australian version of London’s 2005 bombings — and the intelligence community’s handling of events like the Haneef affair is not helping, says a local Islamic leader.

Fadi Rahman, who runs a large Muslim youth centre in Sydney’s southwest, said a recruitment drive led by hardline overseas influences was underway to radicalise youths and sway more moderate voices within Australia.

“Most of the time they start at the local mosque in small groups — they move quickly into the garage, then people’s homes,” Mr Rahman said to The Australian.

Is your son spending too much time in the garage? Be warned: he may be on the road to religious extremism. If this isn’t addressed he may end up visiting people’s homes.

He continues:

“It’s very easy to tap into the mind of someone who has a low education level, unemployment and who has basically given up on life,” said Mr Rahman.

“We need to do something or what happened in London, a London-type bombing, will happen here.”

Maybe the answer is to ban poorly educated and unemployed people from owning garages. That should do the trick.

Comrade Prime Minister: John Howard is the socialist alternative

Never mind the ALP, John Howard is the socialist alternative.

The charge sheet is long and compelling:

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Brass Crescent Awards 2007

The fourth annual Brass Crescent Awards are now open, with nominations being taken online.  Go and vote for your favourite Muslim blogs.

Muslim woman answers opponent

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(via Umar Lee)

Australian Elections 2007

For those of you who will be voting in the coming elections, who do you intend on voting for and why?

Islamic studies ‘will counter ignorance’

The Sydney Morning Herald reports today:

Australia’s first National Centre of Excellence for Islamic Studies will help counter ignorance of Muslim culture in a time of worldwide tension and unrest, Vocational and Further Education Minister Andrew Robb says.

Speaking at the opening at the University of Melbourne, Mr Robb said the centre was partially modelled on the Centre for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University in Washington DC, whose academics help the US government make decisions on Islamic affairs.

Not everyone is impressed with the project. Here’s a completely over-the-top response from another academic — Dr Ali Paul White from the University of Western Sydney — who dubbed it the “Centre of Kufr” (kufr means ‘disbelief’) and an “evil project”.

“Crazy John” Ilhan has died

Ina lilah wa ina illahi raje’oon. “Crazy John” Ilhan, a prominent Australian Muslim businessmen who became one of the richest men in the country, passed away suddenly yesterday at the age of 42 from what appears to be heart failure. One can read tributes from various community leaders can be read here and here. The Age have a summary of his life today as does the Sydney Morning Herald.

Obviously, unmentioned in the various media tributes is that he also gave very generously to Islamic projects and causes. In the late nineties, for example, he sponsored Ahmad Deedat’s visit to the country.

Update: His funeral will be at Broadmeadows Mosque this coming Friday after dhuhr prayer.

Paul(ine) Hanson stands by convicted child molestor

The flame-haired fishwife from Ipswich who believes that black people are pox ridden, that Muslim immigration must be halted has no trouble accepting a convicted child molester into her inner circle.

Unsurprisingly she also has some difficulty distinguishing between allegations of and a conviction for a child sex offence.

For Austrolabe, a buffoon like Hanson is a gift that just keeps giving.

Empire State Building turns Green for Eid

To commemorate the end of Ramadan, the Empire State Building in New York City decided to use green lighting (photos below). As AFP report:

New York’s iconic Empire State Building is to be lit up green from Friday in honor of the Muslim holiday of Eid, the biggest festival in the Muslim calendar marking the end of Ramadan, officials said.

“This is the first time that the Empire State Building will be illuminated for Eid, and the lighting will become an annual event in the same tradition of the yearly lightings for Christmas and Hannukah,” according to a statement.

When most of us look at these pictures, we see, well, green but Michelle Malkin and ridiculous C-list pundit and “2005 weblog finalist” Debbi Schlussel see red. In fact, Schlussel concludes looking at the building is like being forced to drink cyanide-laced grape-flavoured Flavor-Aid by a cult leader in Guyana:

If only Jim Jones were around today . . . Kool-Aid Purple Lighting atop the Empire State. “Interreligious Understanding.”

Just asking us to look at the HAMAS-Green is like forcing us to drink the Purple.

Err, yeah. Right.

Anyway, here’s what the Empire State Building looks like:

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