13900908195843375_PhotoLby baldilocks

Peter has been documenting the mind-boggling Rotherham scandal and its very existence is merely a single death rattle for the United Kingdom as we knew it. There are many other signs of rigor mortis, however. They might as well say the Shahada in Parliament.

There’s this:

There are now more than twice as many British Muslims fighting for Islamic State than there are serving in the British armed forces, according to a British Member of Parliament (MP).

Khalid Mahmood, the MP for Perry Barr in Birmingham, estimates that at least 1,500 young British Muslims have been recruited by extremists fighting in Iraq and Syria in the last three years.

Mahmood told Newsweek that this figure had been building since the start of the Syrian conflict: “If you look across the whole of the country, and the various communities involved, 500 going over each year would be a conservative estimate.”

According to the Ministry of Defence, there are only around 600 British Muslims currently serving in the Armed Forces, making up approximately around 0.4% of total personnel. 4.3% of the British population are Muslim.

There’s this:

Protesters filmed themselves blocking a London road with dozens of parked cars as they called for Israel to relinquish its grip on Gaza amid concerns the community is becoming ‘radicalised’

Drivers parked their cars, honked their horns and shouted ‘free free Palestine’, bringing the major commuter route in east London to a standstill. […]

The demonstration took place on July 20 in the Blackwall tunnel which connects Greenwich in south London with Tower Hamlets, an east London borough with a large Muslim population, police confirmed.

The footage of parked cars covered in Palestinian flags and the word ‘Gaza’ emerged on YouTube early this week and has been shared on Facebook more than 6,000 times.

It is unclear how long the tunnel remained blocked during the incident.

It came just days before Tower Hamlets’s Muslim mayor sparked outrage by raising the Palestinian flag outside the town hall.

And this, regarding Rotherham; it is the most telling sign–and the most disgusting one–that it’s over, over there.

The dads had attempted to remove their daughters from houses where abuse was taking place, but they were the ones who were then arrested by police.

Prof Jay’s inquiry said police often treated victims with ‘contempt’, frequently arresting them while taking no action against those committing offences.

Her report said: “In two of the cases, fathers tracked down their daughters and tried to remove them from houses where they were being abused, only to be arrested themselves when police were called to the scene.

“In a small number of cases, the victims themselves were arrested for offences such as breach of the peace or being drunk and disorderly, with no action taken against the perpetrators of rape and sexual assault.

Why haven’t such things happened here? You know why. But the zone is being flooded and our leadership is being tested…and found wanting. But I have more faith in the American people.

Rest in Peace, UK…and James Foley and Steven Sotloff.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!baldilocks

by baldilocks

Report: ISIS eyeing Mexican border to infiltrate America and execute terrorist attacks

Islamist militants tweet gruesome images of dead American soldiers and vow to blow up embassies

Saudi King warns that the west jihadis’ next target

dandelions (1)

The weeds of fear are the favored crop of any terrorist.

Two years after that bit of unpleasantness in New York City, in Washington, DC, and in the Pennsylvania countryside, I wrote this:

Terrorists commit their acts not for the benefit of the dead, but for those who remain alive. “Look at what we’ll do to you and yours,” they say, “if you don’t do what we want you to do.” They revel in our horror. They rejoice in the sorrow of the families who will never bury the atomized [or beheaded] bodies of their loved ones. They say, “yeah, we did it and we’ll do it to you unless you….submit.”

Does anyone remember the story of Emmett Till? Several years before I was born, Till, fourteen-years-old, was the victim of another set of terrorists. This young black man, not knowing or not caring about the ways of the South of that period, was murdered for allegedly making an indecent remark to a white woman. He disappeared and, days later, his body, beaten and shot, was found in a river. The men who were tried for his murder were acquitted. Emmett’s murder wasn’t an isolated case of a man supposedly defending the honor of his wife. As we know, all over the South, black men were being murdered for “stepping out of their place,” whether they actually had stepped out of their “place” or not.

Those who committed these crimes did so not only for “revenge” on the dead, but to send a message to and strike fear in the living. That’s what made it terrorism. Sound familiar?

In 2001 (and 1968 and 1979 and 1983 and 1988 and 1993 and 1998 and 2003 [added: and in 2014] and every year in between), the players are different from that of 1955, but the message is the same: do what we want or this will happen to you or to those whom you love. In this case, it is “worship in the way we worship; bow five times a day to Mecca or else.”

I mention the Till case not to compare the two sets of terrorists, per se, but to compare the dissimilar reactions of the victims’ loved ones. Mamie Till, Emmett’s mother, had an open-casket funeral for her son. […]

[Till’s] head–monstrous from the beating, the bullet and the decomposition–contrasted against the normalcy of the casket and the suit that Mrs. Till had picked out for the body. It gave the picture that much more ugliness: your worst nightmare in banal black and white.

But Mamie Till’s steely words about the open-casket decision were electrifying: “I want the world to see what they did to my son.”

Well, the “world” did see and, though there was much more sorrow to be had–as it is with any major upheaval of a society–things changed. Some of us even think that things have changed for the better…such home-grown types of terrorists still exist, but when caught, they usually sit on death row rather sit at home having beers with their friends. We can send our message as well.

Keep sowing, jihadis. Most of us are good at pulling up weeds–and at cleaning metal.Baldilocks mini

All die once. But the feaful die twice.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game,
was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, 
Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

by baldilocks

This is going to be an “I, me, my” kind of post.

I don’t know what to write about anymore. As a matter of fact I have had to re-think my whole way of living and interacting with the world–both the online world and the real one, of which writing is an integral part.

Like all too many Americans, I have had to scale back on the things which require more money: less extravagant food items and more basics. I found out I’m eligible for EBT, but I’d rather starve that sell my freedom for a “mess of pottage.” (Side note: I recently gave up fast food–not for financial reasons, but because my half-century old digestive system said “no más.”) I’ve lost weight and (re)learned to sew because I can’t afford new clothes. I’ve learned tbaldilockso repair rather than replace household items. And let’s not even discuss transportation.

Watching what is happening to our country and to the world at large is the main culprit. And, it’s not merely the myriad signs that our Lord’s return is imminent; nor is it just the temptation to sit back and let it happen. It’s the obliviousness of most people in my sphere. It’s the normalcy bias among many, even as they feel the same financial and (sometimes) spiritual crunch that I do. And, even among those who see what’s happening, it’s the tunnel-vision–the inability to pull the lens back from things like the Ferguson debacle and look at things from a decades-long or even a millennia-long perspective.

So what to do now? I sell many items on eBay; some were items that I owned; others were bequeathed to me by my great-aunt. (When I mentioned on Facebook that I was selling some of her old stemware, one of my cousins teased me, saying that our aunt would not be happy with me selling her stuff. I replied that she couldn’t take the stuff with her and neither could I.) I am using several other means to earn money; it’s a bit easier for me than most, since I only have myself to worry about.

I have been blessed with family and a few good friends who have helped me financially, with transportation and, most importantly, with their prayers. I have people like our host–Peter, Da tech Guy–who gave me this fine gig. I even have a personal drug-dealer; she keeps me stocked in caffeine.

I have God, the Church, my church, my pastor and my fellow congregants. Through this, I’m even learning a fourth language (Hebrew).

In the midst of the storms of the larger world and one’s personal world, grabbing onto the blessings of God seems hard, at first. But, in my experience, once the mind is set to see what is good in life, it becomes easier. So I will continue to be grateful for the blessings–especially when many of my brothers and sisters in Christ have it infinitely worse.

So, the plan: read, watch, wait, and listen…with my spiritual ears and my fleshly ones. And I have faith that God will sustain me and tell me what to do when these abnormal times become even more interesting.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game,
was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, 
Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

by baldilocks

The 75th anniversary of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact is today and the names of the two signatories—the two foreign ministers–practically scream “USSR” and “Nazi Germany.” The agreement is infamous; one in which the envoys of a pair of tyrants agree to divide Poland and several other countries.

Molotov (l.) and Ribbentrop
Molotov (l.) and Ribbentrop

I’m looking for something perversely symbolic to happen today; perhaps something similar to what happened five years ago when President Obama reneged on a promise to give Poland and the Czech Republic missile shield technology—a promise which George W. Bush had made and set into motion.

The date which President Obama announced that he would break that promise? September 17, 2009, which was the 70th Anniversary to the day of the beginning of invasion of Poland by the USSR and Nazi Germany.

No, I don’t think that President Obama knew this—he simply does what he’s told–but you can bet that his handlers picked that day for that very reason. They were sending Poland a message.

Anyway, all these milestones and the gearing up of new conflicts, new treacheries, new genocides, and new Jew-hatred got me to thinking about what I wrote on 2010’s D-Day anniversary.

From reading Carroll Quigley’s Tragedy and Hope…I discovered what a death toll World War One had taken on the population of its European participants.  Present-day protesters against the American wars in Iraq and Afghanistan [sic] would have committed serial seppuku over the type of casualties taken in any single battle of the Great War—the great numbers of dead being caused by contemporaneous weapons combined with American Civil War-era tactics.  Then, there were the civilian casualties.  Overwhelming to ponder at the time, no doubt, but small potatoes compared to what was to come a few years after the “War to End All Wars.”

Europeans murdered each other thoroughly in that war, in World War Two, in between the wars and afterward. They did so via gas chambers, ovens [sic], starvation and government prison camps and most of them viciously turned on the Jews, using the means stated.  Because of that–and abortion–there have not been enough indigenous Europeans left to reproduce and, thereby, fund the welfare states in which they so desperately believe and which are become their undoing.  So, they had to invite in immigrants from Africa and Asia–mostly Muslim.

And therein lies the interesting part.  Murdered Jews—the monetary experts and culture of Europe–who would have reproduced to populate a far stronger and more admirable Europe, IMO–have been replaced by those who hate both Jews and non-Muslim white Europeans and who reproduce at a far greater rate than do their hosts.  And, the kicker is that the white post-Christian Europeans invited in their would-be conquerors.

The children and grandchildren of those who coveted Jewish possessions will soon be in a struggle with those who simultaneously claim that there was no Holocaust and who long to perpetrate the next one.  No, hatred doesn’t have to make sense.

That struggle will be over possession of a land which is covered with the ashes of the Jews.

You don’t think God doesn’t keep his promises?  Think again.

Also, God sends messages and will sometimes use His supreme comic talents to do it. The recipient, however, is never laughing.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game,baldilocks was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

ISIS-is-hereby baldilocks

As we watch the nine-day-old tragic, comedic tragedy in Ferguson, MO, it’s easy to get caught up in the sequential information leakage that often happens with these circuses. It’s almost as if we become drunk on them. But, sometimes, another event will elbow its way into the front of the queue and the magnitude of it will, in contrast, make us feel dead, cold sober.

James Foley, an American journalist who went missing in Syria more than a year ago, has reportedly been killed by the Islamic State, a militant group formerly known as ISIS. A YouTube video and photos purportedly of Foley emerged on Tuesday. The video — entitled “A Message to #America (from the #IslamicState)” — identified a man on his knees as “James Wright Foley,” and showed his beheading.

“This is James Wright Foley, an American citizen of your country,” an Islamic State militant says in the video, which has since been removed by YouTube. “As a government, you have been at the forefront of the aggression towards the Islamic State. You have plotted against us and have gone far out of your way to find reasons to interfere in our affairs. Today, your military air force is attacking us daily in Iraq, your strikes have caused casualties among Muslims.”

The video also shows another man on his knees who is identified as American journalist Steven Sotloff. The Islamic State member says that Sotloff’s future “depends” on President Obama’s “next decision.” Sotloff, a freelance journalist, went missing in Syria in August 2013.

It is pertinent to note that ISIS appears to have a presence in the Ferguson chaos and are urging the protesters to embrace Islam.  Such a polite invitation is mandatory before a more, shall we say, impolite one.

Guard your soul…and your neck.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game,baldilocks was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

by baldilocks

Earlier today, I wrote this on Facebook:baldilocks

Conservatives need to learn the difference between constrained and unconstrained vision of politics, political struggles, and life philosophy in general.

I see all too many conservatives in my time line who think that some of us are advocating anarchy because of our wariness of the militarization of police forces around the country (as recently demonstrated in Ferguson MO).

Seriously, are some of you so limited in your thinking that you are unfamiliar with moderation? Or is everything one extreme or another?

One can be for law and order while being, at the same time, alarmed by local police forces taking over the role and equipment of state and federal armed forces.

The same persons are often unable to grasp the magnitude of institutional and societal mission creep–the magnitude of change, a change in the works long before heralded by change’s most infamous booster.

As a kid, you’re (possibly) taught a simple concept: obey the law, and you won’t get arrested. And the law is usually clear and easily-learned. If the sign says “no parking”, you can’t park there. You can look up the legal code; to avoid getting arrested, you just have to follow those written-down rules.

But the “failure to obey a lawful police order” misdemeanor on the books in most places seems like a formula for trouble. The law is largely intended for situations like, “back away from the accident scene” or “don’t touch that” or other circumstances where a civilian could interfere with police business.

It’s the only law that Washington Post reporter Wesley Lowery and Huffington Post reporter Ryan Reilly could conceivably be charged with breaking when they were handcuffed and taken into custody Wednesday night; both were released without any charges. Suddenly the law isn’t necessarily what’s written down or posted; it’s whatever the guy with the badge, gun, and handcuffs says it is. To avoid getting arrested, you have to obey the guy with the badge, and his definition of a lawful order is up to him and his colleagues.

What many cannot grasp is that nearly all of our government institutions–from federal to local–have embraced the unconstrained vision, as demonstrated above. This is also known as chaos, and I can’t see any difference between the institutionalized chaos ticks infesting our system(s) and the rioters, looters and arsonists of Ferguson, MO–except that practitioners of the latter are more honest in their barbarism than the former.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

 

worship
…in tribulation

by baldilocks

In light of horrible events, both national and international, I present the following from Philippians 4:4-9.

4 Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.

5 Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.

6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

9 Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.

We should rejoice for God’s grace while it’s still relatively easy. The Bible says that there will be a time when there is a famine of the Word of God. For tens of thousands, that famine is occurring now, but there is no guarantee that we of the First World will be spared this.

In order to do this, we need to…ahem…renew our minds each and every day. Else we get bogged down in the horrors of this world and begin to be fooled into thinking that there is no escape and that the good guys don’t win in the end.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!Baldilocks mini

 

 

by baldilocksJohn-Mccain

I always found the term “fear-monger” to be a tell about the person using it.

A person who mongers is, using the traditional definition, a dealer or a trader who sells a finite set of commodities. The second connotation goes this way:

[the promotion of] a specified activity, situation, or feeling, especially one that is undesirable or discreditable.

Many recall that Senator John McCain (R-AZ), during his 2008 campaign for the presidency, (in)famously stated the following at a townhall meeting:

I want to be president of the United States, and I don’t want Obama to be. But I have to tell you, he is a decent person, and a person that you do not have to be scared [of] as President of the United States.

Six years, many violations of the US Constitution, wars, pestilence and the rumors thereof later, we find that Senator McCain was…right.

The intentional actions of the Obama Administration pose grave threats to our personal survival and our survival as a nation–but we don’t have to be afraid of them. By that, I mean that we don’t have be paralyzed by fear–the overwhelming sense that there is nothing that we can do to thwart our destruction.

A counter-example: many believe–and I am among this number–that members of our legislative and judicial branches are afraid to take meaningful steps to rein in the executive branch. Afraid of what? Only they know for certain. But, assuming the belief is correct, that unnamed fear has immobilized the other two branches. And, as a result, this country has suffered outrage after outrage.

So, Senator McCain was correct, though probably not in the manner he intended.

Back to fear mongering, or the allegation thereof. When you try to warn someone of a reasonably-calculated possible danger and that person calls you a fear-monger, she does it in order avoid acknowledging her own fear. Acknowledging fear is the first step in getting past it and acting decisively in the face of it, armed with the truth–for starters. Rather than do that very tough work, such a person would prefer that you shut up. But, the truth is that they are buying what you are not selling. We know who the salesman is.

From that, we discover that failing to do what’s right because of the fear of subsequent consequences is a form of baldilockssloth. That God hates cowards is no mystery.

And on that note, I find myself praying often, that certain people act decisively in the face of legitimate fear. May it be an ironic beginning.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

 

by baldilocks

When did being in a majority with respect to a given opinion become the sole prerequisite for the validity of that Baldilocks miniopinion? Even Christians, who have a long record at their disposal, can’t seem to grasp a simple pattern: when the majority is moving in one direction, it is often wise to move in the opposite direction.

This phenomenon is called the Bandwagon Fallacy, which is

committed by arguments that appeal to the growing popularity of an idea as a reason for accepting it as true. They take the mere fact that an idea suddenly attracting adherents as a reason for us to join in with the trend and become adherents of the idea ourselves.

This is a fallacy because there are many other features of ideas than truth that can lead to a rapid increase in popularity. Peer pressure, tangible benefits, or even mass stupidity could lead to a false idea being adopted by lots of people. A rise in the popularity of an idea, then, is no guarantee of its truth.

(Emphasis mine.)

There are countless examples from which to choose, but here’s one relevant to August of 2014: that raising the minimum wage benefits any employee base. It’s easy to figure out why this is false.

  • If an employer must pay his employees a higher minimum wage,
  • The fewer employees that employyer will be able to afford, and separately
  • Producers of goods and services will, naturally raise their prices.

Therefore high minimum wage produces fewer jobs and higher prices.

But don’t try to tell majority of minimum wage earners this or any minimum wage advocate this. Most of both groups think that more of anything–especially paper bank notes– is better. Tell to the Zimbaweans.

And then there’s the “majority opinion” Israel-Hamas conflict…

“Majority rules” are two words that should scare the crap out of any thinking person.

Like Dr. Sowell, I wonder if thinking has been abandoned. Or maybe it has merely been squashed by covetousness.

The results are the same, in the long run.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!

by baldilocks

Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.baldilocks

–John 18:36 (KJV)

As the birth pangs of the new Caliphate intensify, I am mindful of the assertion of many atheists and pacifists that almost all wars and massacres are religious or sectarian in origin.

We need not look too far back in history to see  some of the truth of this: the Armenian Genocide, the Iran-Iraq War, the perennial wars between modern Israel and her Arab-Muslim neighbors, and of course the Holocaust.

But then, there are the recent wars and massacres which were not religious, per se: World War I, Japan’s crimes in World War II, Holodomor and Stalin’s other purges, Mao, Pol Pot, and the Rwandan genocide. (One might label the forgoing as tribal wars.)

But, if we go much further back we can see that the original assertion may be valid.

From a Christian perspective, however, I ask this question: why wouldn’t most wars be religious in nature? Since the successful temptation of Adam by the Enemy, that Enemy has been trying to con as many of us as possible in as many areas as possible, the primary one being the nature of God and the nature of our relationship with Him.

And, if we human beings are still prone to being conned, it seems to me that the con would be in this manner: adapting a religion or world-view that puts self before anything and anyone, including God. Or, overtly, considering oneself to be God. I’m not only referring to religions outside of Judaism and Christianity, but sects “within the fold,” such as Liberation Theologies and Prosperity Doctrines. I-deologies.

Our Enemy got thrown out of Heaven due to his pride and it seems to me that pride is the primary lure he uses to blind us to the true nature of God and, therefore, blind us to our own sinful nature. After all, it’s easy to love ourselves, but it takes a lot more work to “love God and love our neighbor as ourselves.

So, when self is primary—when self is worshiped–it’s a lot easier to view others as secondary or of no account whatsoever. If that’s so, then we might be able to say that all wars are religious in nature, even when one side has an objectively righteous grievance. That’s not to say that war is wrong; it is a byproduct of this world since the Fall and this world belongs to the Enemy. This means that some individual or group somewhere is always on offense in the name of “god” or on defense against the former.

It’s always about God—or about god, depending on which one you’re serving.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2009; the second edition in 2012. Her new novel, Arlen’s Harem, is due in 2014. Help her fund it and help keep her blog alive!