Friday, January 30, 2009
Now I know better.
The first ex-marine I met was 'The Venerable Rood', who lived four doors down on the same floor of a residential hotel as myself. Several years in the Marine Corps had left him with a taste for well-built men, stiff drinks, and tight leather pants. A plurality of all of these defined his life-style. Evenings, in his world, meant spanking. Which one could hear from any corner of the building. The tearful spankee would then be comforted with gin.
A year after that, when I was living in The Bachelors Quarters (a residential hotel for single men), I met G.R., and 'Bert and Ernie'.
Bert and Ernie had first known each other in the Marine Corps. When they got out they moved to San Francisco at the same time, though separately. They always denied that they had a thing going, but they always ended up living in the same building, and could always be found in each other's rooms. No, they didn't do anything in public that might be suspect. They did not go for blatant displays of affection. They didn't betray their praedilections with tenderness or hugs. They were both far too manly for such softness.
Instead, Ernie would visit Bert's room, and while Bert was distracted Ernie would hide a giant foot-and-a-half long pink rubber novelty dildo in Bert's bed. Then, mission accomplished, he would take leave and head back to his own room. Ten minutes later Bert would come roaring down the hallway waving the object, and bang on Ernie's door with it. "Let me in, let me in, you bastard, I don't want to see this ever again!"
A voice would come from behind the locked door, softly averring "Ernie no es acqui, you come back later, gringo". To no avail. The pounding with the pink rubber dildo continued unabated till Ernie relented, and the thing returned to Ernie's chest of drawers.
When Bert left the building, Ernie would sometimes go onto the roof of the building next door, walk over to Ernie's window, let himself in, and hide the dildo again, for Ernie to discover at eleven o'clock when he got off work.
They would occasionally beat each other up, or do laundry together in their boxers. They were banned from several local laundromats.
They now live in Portland.
It wasn't until I met Spanner and Rotorhead that I realized that one could be an ex-marine, yet fully heterosexual.
Spanner played golf with himself when he got off work at three in the morning, practicing his putting on the carpet in the long hallway of the Skyway Hotel. Click, whirrrrrrrr, tink. Click, whirrrrrrrrr, plonk. Dribble dribble dribble. The activity would be punctuated by a beer can being opened, or a swear word exclaimed. And the phrase "you can't escape, you don't get out alive".
This behaviour used to drive Swamiji in the room at the end of the hall to distraction. The first couple of nights, Swamiji came storming out of his room yelling. After Spanner pushed him over several times, Swamiji thought the better of that course of action and eventually moved to another room far from the putting green. The sight of one intoxicated gentleman in baggy boxers altercating with another intoxicated gentleman in a baggy dhoti is now permanently burned in my mind.
Spanner eventually married a woman with five kids and moved to Fremont.
I do not know if he still plays golf.
Rotorhead dated depressive punk girls, collected old radios, and frequently lost his balance due to having been shot out of the sky over Beirut. His inner ear was permanently damaged. Other than that, he was refreshingly normal; he deliberately ignored all the voices in his head.
As he put it, he didn't listen to anybody who didn't speak English, even if they were yelling 'incoming, incoming'.
AND BACK TO GAIETY
G.R., whom I mentioned before telling you about Bert and Ernie, was perhaps the most well-balanced of all the ex-marines. The only behavioural pattern which could possibly be conceived of as even slightly problematic was his early morning custom of marching to the shower entirely naked, hiding his manly bits with a towel held before. Like Lord Drummond (another tenant), he would practice opera under the running water, his deep basso profundo sending Italian lyrics into the airwell; it was a morning ritual much appreciated by other tenants. Folks just like good singing, okay?
Unlike 'The Watersprite', he did not use the wash-basins in the third floor hallway, even if the showers were occupied - he would patiently wait. Humming. Naked. In the hall. Towel in one hand, soap in the other.
He looked imposing at those times, in his tall and be-paunched fuzzy nakedness. He radiated a state of being at peace with the world. His standards were firm and solid. Nudity, cleanliness, and opera went together, and that meant peace of mind. This was obvious.
One day there was a very loud domestic disturbance in the alley next to the hotel.
The showers were occupied, G.R. was waiting his turn, and he was getting more and more agitated by the screeches and wails from outside.
Finally he threw his cigarette down, stomped over to the window overlooking the alley, and screamed "I'm full of sugar, naked, and happy, dagnabbit!"
Shocked silence replaced the screeching and wailing.
Earlier today I was standing outside having a smoke, when the spitting image of G.R. walked by. For a second, I could see him again in my mind, full of sugar, naked and happy.
And I smiled - it was a flashback to the marines.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
[Her blog: http://deathbynoodles.blogspot.com/]
For several weeks, the intemperate Patel has lurked in the comments on her blog, leaving his verbal footprints under nearly every post. He has a fetish, and is almost stalker-like in his attentions. And despite discouragement, he proved impossible to shake, impervious to criticism, and deaf to blandishments. He was persistent, and utterly unmoved.
But no longer. She got him good.
Please view Snooky's latest post, in which she skewers the ungentle Patel.
She takes him to task for his meshune and perverse annotations, then provides the intemperate Patel with four tempting links for his unseemly fetish: 'Her Room Lingerie', 'Petite Lingerie', 'Hello Kitty Lingerie', and 'Dreaming of Lingerie'.
The first three links are to stores that sell brassieres and panties, among many other wonderful things. The fourth link takes the reader (the Patel in question) directly to a site discussing erectile dysfunction.
It looks like poor mr. Patel did not appreciate the gentle humour, and is smarting from the jab.
My regular readers will not be surprised to discover that I have been a reader of ms. Wong's blog from nearly the beginning. And have enjoyed her occasional quirky insights.
[The idea of a fellow blogger being a petite Cantonese girl in the same city as oneself is rather delicious, don't you agree?]
Earlier this month, Death By Noodles took issue with some of the protests on the streets of San Francisco.
Significant quote from the second post:
"But some of the older men on the blue and white flag side looked nice. Pinker, too.
They are cute with their little colored beanies."
A better argument for wearing a kippah can scarce be found.
That day I wore no yarmulke, alas, and in consequence I fear she did not notice me at all. I was invisible.
She may have been the charming young lady with a doggie who sat a little distance off on our side of the street. But I will probably never know.
Next time, a keppel. It is necessary.
NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.
War Protests or Pro-Hamas Hate Rallies?
Annotation accompanying the video
Thousands of people have participated in demonstrations throughout the country that are critical of Israel's military incursion into Gaza. Thousands gathered January 10 in Washington's Lafayette Park. A coalition of national Muslim-American groups, including the Muslim American Society and the Council on American-Islamic Relations, who organized bus caravans to bring protesters to the capital.
Rather than simply take issue with the battle in Gaza, demonstrators in Washington, D.C., New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Anaheim, Houston and other cities repeatedly have engaged in ugly hate speech and chants that echo the goals and dogma of Hamas and other terrorist groups.
Fistfights and chants calling for the murder of Jews and invoking the Holocaust expose the true motivation behind distressingly large segments of the protesters. After all, the conflict Israel wages is against Hamas, a terrorist organization whose charter contains virulent anti-Semitism, calls for Israel's destruction and rejects any peaceful settlement to the conflict.
As this report shows, radical, hateful attacks have been prominent in rallies across the country.
*This video was produced by Steve Emerson and The Investigative Project on Terrorism.
Quote from that site:
FBI Cuts Off CAIR Over Hamas Questions
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has cut off contacts with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) amid mounting concern about the Muslim advocacy group’s roots in a Hamas-support network, the Investigative Project on Terrorism has learned.
According to a letter from the FBI field office in Oklahoma City, "certain issues must be addressed to the satisfaction of the FBI" by CAIR's national office before the freeze is rescinded.
Aussie Dave blogs at:
He's a friend of Jameel, who blogs at:
NOTE: What was quite obvious here in San Francisco was that such events were organized hate rallies. Whether they were pro-Hamas hate rallies, or just plain old-fashioned hate rallies is debatable. That they were hate rallies is not.
There is no question that the organizers and sponsors of those rallies, including International ANSWER, Jewish Voice for Peace, Bay Area Women in Black, and many Arab organizations, are anti-Semitic and racist.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
"Yesterday, we heard Khaled Mashal talking from Damascus about new, additional preconditions for national reconciliation – the only goal of which is to hinder the achievement of reconciliation."
"Today, Hamas gangs are unleashed like packs of animals on the streets of Gaza against Fatah members. Because the military bases and the prisons have been destroyed, they have turned Gaza schools, Al-Nasser Hospital, the radiology department at Shifa' Hospital, Al-Aqsa University, and other places, including mosques, into centers for the detention, interrogation, and torture of Fatah members and members of other national Palestinian factions."
"Dozens of people have been shot in the leg, been beaten savagely, and had their bones broken, because they are members of the Fatah movement, which took to the streets of Gaza to confront the occupation, leaving all disagreements [with Hamas] behind, during the battle against the invasion by the Israeli occupation. This is what is happening today in Gaza."
"This reminds me of the 'glorious exploits' of Chemical Ali in southern Iraq after the 1991 'Mother of All Wars.' When the smoke of battle cleared, he turned his gangs and his fire against the Iraqis in southern Iraq, and the massacre that ensued is known to all. Who is the 'Chemical' today in Gaza, who wants to turn Gaza into the venue of a new massacre?"
"I heard that Abu Marzouq is sanctioning the killing of Palestinians, in an interview with the Qatari Al-Sharq newspaper the day before yesterday. He said that they have [captured] collaborators, and they have already executed some, while others await their turn. What collaborators are you talking about, Mr. Abu Marzouq? Of course he has expanded the list, saying that anyone who criticizes the policy of Hamas a traitor and a collaborator, and that it is okay to kill him. Is this the promised Islamic rule, or is it a blood-soaked lie about Islam?"
"Who plunders the trucks bringing aid to the Gaza Strip, and distributes it only among the follows of its party and movement, while the children of Gaza are starving? Who is stealing the land of Gaza, dividing it into lots, and giving them to the cronies of Hamas members of the Shura Council?"
[SOURCE: MEMRI - © 1998-2008, The Middle East Media Research Institute,
All Rights Reserved. Materials may only be cited with proper attribution.
MEMRI: http://www.memri.org/ MEMRITV: http://www.memritv.org/ Clip #1998 - Secretary of the PLO Executive Committee Yasser Abd Rabbo Accuses Hamas of New Atrocities against Fatah Members in Gaza http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/0/0/0/0/0/0/1998.htm ]
From the above it can be seen that not all Arabs, nor even all Palestinians, are supporters of Hamas. Many Palestinians have more than sufficient reason to fear Hamas, and consequently oppose them in every matter.
That is quite unlike the Bay Area pro-Palestinians, who do not question the virtues of the Harkat al Mukawamma al 'Slamiya (the Movement of Islamic Resistance, that being the name of the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is recognized in many countries as a terrorist movement).
But then, those who do not have to live with Hamas will blithely ignore details that contradict their own idealism.
Those aren't their knees which are capped.
It is comfortable to live in Berkeley.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Quote: The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) estimates that hundreds of people have been killed in fighting between troops and separatist rebels.
And: Speaking in Geneva, the ICRC's head of operations for South Asia, Jacques de Maio, said the civilian population was paying the price for the conflict.
"We talk about approximately a quarter of a million persons who are fundamentally trapped in a very small restricted perimeter - 250 sq km [96 sq m] - which is the theatre of very intense combat".
CIVILIANS IN THE CROSSFIRE
This is a truly frightful situation. Wherefore I absolutely expect masses of Berkeleyites and International ANSWER members to take to Bay Area streets decrying this slaughter.
The targeting of innocent civilians justifiably excites their ire, nay, their compassion.
It gets their blood boiling, they cannot help themselves, they must protest this cruelty.
Well, where are your guys?
I'm still waiting!
Perhaps another quote will spur you?
Pro-rebel sources have previously accused the army of killing hundreds of civilians with shellfire - allegations the military denies.
Surely Tamils deserve the same consideration if not more than the civilians of Gaza?
No? Are you sure? You're not just being racist, are you?
You really think it's all peachy over there, and you are not at all concerned?
Oh, I forgot - Tamils are the Jews of Sri-Lanka, and therefore not worthy of the intellectual pretentiousness of the good people of Berkeley.
You guys ARE racists.
Gaza Solidarity Week
Tuesday, January 27
Gaza Under Siege Teach In
Wheeler Hall, 6 PM
Teach in and panel discussion about life in Gaza, the current humanitarian situation, the geopolitical context and history of events leading up to the incursion. (Co-Sponsored by the Ethnic Studies Department)
Prof. Beshara Doumani
Prof. Judith Butler
Prof. George Besharat
Dr. Hatem Bazian
[Note: any mention of Hamas' responsibility for events, or the kneecapping of Fatah members by Hamas goons, is probably guaranteed to get you beaten up by Hamas sympathizers at Berkeley.]
Wednesday, January 28
We Are All Palestinian Vigil
Upper Sproul, 5 PM
Join us in a candle light vigil commemorating the lives lost in Gaza. Rally against Israeli violence, the killing of Palestinians in Gaza, and violence experienced by communities of color here at home. Remember Oscar Grant.
[Note: Any mention of Jewish life in pre-independence Palestine, the pogroms by the Mufti's vile goons, or even the Fatah members executed by Hamas upon their violent take-over a while back, is extremely likely to get you beaten up by Hamas sympathizers at Berkeley.]
Thursday, January 29
We Shall Remain Palestinian Cultural Night
MCC/Heller Lounge 7 PM
Open mic for students to speak up and out about anything from Gaza to Oakland.
[Note: Any criticism of the racism of Hamas and other extreme branches of the Palestinian movement, the institutional bigotry of UC Berkeley, as well as the brutal repression of dissent in Gaza by the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood (which is banned in most Arab countries), will almost certainly get you beaten up by Hamas sympathizers at Berkeley.]
These events are brought to you by the Gaza Solidarity Coalition, and sponsored by:
Afghan Student Association
Arab Resource & Organizing Center
Arab Student Union
Berkeley Stop the War Coalition
Black Recruitment and Retention Center
By Any Means Necessary (BAMN)
Center for Race and Gender
Department of Ethnic Studies
Ethnic Studies Undergraduate Student Collective
Gaza Solidarity Coalition
Middle Eastern Children's Alliance
Muslim Student Association
Pakistani Student Association
Phi Nu Xi Multicultural Sorority
Students for Hip Hop
Students for Justice in Palestine
Students for Social Change
Turkic Student Association
Young Entrepreneurs of Berkeley
The organizations listed above are, more or less, a representative sample of the Hamas sympathizers in the city of Berkeley, its institutions, and on campus. Anti-Semitism, hate speech, and violence can reasonably be expected from members of some of the groups listed above and their supporters.
Similar tendencies are also rife among faculty and administration of the university (as also elsewhere at other campuses (campi) in the UC system).
Unfortunately, the situation on the Berkeley campus is not likely to improve until faculty and administration acknowledge the gravity of the problem and commit themselves to rectifying it.
Given the institutional anti-Semitism pervasive throughout the University of California, that is likely to happen at approximately the same time as the over-freezing of hell.
Students with a strong Jewish sense of self should consider enrolling elsewhere until and unless the situation at Berkeley changes, and Jewish organizations and benefactors should be made aware that their continued support of an anti-Semitic campus ultimately works against their own interests.
The stigma of being labeled an anti-Semitic campus might prompt faculty and administrators towards some necessary corrective action - but I sincerely doubt it.
Monday, January 26, 2009
I of course did not go, as I do not exist.
Actually, what that really means is that we have never told any of her relatives about me.
Please try to imagine the uproar if we did.
"Mom, Dad, this is Toad, with whom I have been deliciously living in sin for many years. The bad news is, he's white and glows in the dark. The good news is, he speaks Cantonese. Now go scream at him colorfully in your language while I prepare myself a stiff drink."
Yes, that is SO not going to happen.
For one thing, she doesn't drink.
Instead, while she enjoyed the warm embrace of family across the hill in Chinatown, I headed in the opposite direction to visit Kinokunya Books in Nihonmachi.
I returned with volume twelve of Chibi Vampire, volume three of Rosario Vampire, volume three of Your And My Secret, and two volumes of a series of which I can't at present remember the name.
In order, cute moe romantic comedy set in a high school, hot high school lust and monster comedy, over the top genderbent comedy, and two books with....... thighs.
Specifically, delicious plump thighs of which only a wee bit is visible between the hem of the skirt and the top of the thigh-high stockings. There are four girls, there is one boy. The story is utterly forgettable, but the illustrations cater most appetizingly to perverts. Short short skirts, thigh high stockings. Six inches of smooth smooth thigh. Plus the occasional flash of something lacy in a context that makes no sense. And silhouettes of very generous .... errrm, uh, ehhh, secondary characteristics. Yes, that's it - "secondaries".
The artist who drew the story is an utter degenerate - not someone you should allow anywhere near your children. Not even if you introduce him as "Uncle Dirty Old Man", and tell them to never ever allow him into the house.
I finished all five books (plus a few cocktails and a big bowl of crispy bits and sausage cucumber noodles herbs in zesty curry broth) by the time Savage Kitten returned. So I at least had a splendid afternoon.
I'm not so sure about her.
Significantly, she applauding the very recent acquisition of a bottle of Jim Beam, which she noticed as soon as she came home.
Friday, January 23, 2009
And also nearly two hundred thousand people in San Francisco.
[鄉 下 heung ha: down in the countryside; one's native place. The hometown. The agricultural heartland. The place where your roots are.]
And of course, it also affects Savage Kitten. Who has spent the last week in a frenzy of housekeeping, preparing the apartment for the occasion. My task is to NOT piff her oss at this time. She is tense. She is moody.
She is holding a bottle of Clorox cleaning solution.
And I do know what is good for me.
All I really need to do for this season is acquire oranges and tangerines, plus some growing things, to give the place a festive look.
Can do. No problem.
This year I'm also putting some flowers in the kitchen.
Because I spend a lot of time there.
It's the only part of the house where I'm allowed to smoke.
In the past I could often get away with sneaking a puff in the teevee room, especially if she was asleep or her nostrils were stuffed up. Plugged sinuses.
But at this time of year such is absolutely impossible. Her eagle nose sniffs out my miscreance in no time. She will start upright in the middle of the night and yell "Toad, are you SMOKING?!?!"
'Of course not. I would NEVER smoke anywhere else than the kitchen. Honest. That's just your allergies, dear.'
Even though I like Chinese New Year, there are some other seasons that I prefer. Like mid-spring, when the Acacia trees bloom, and the anise-like fragrance abundantly perfumes the air.
Lawzy, I really do LOVE pollen.
Happy new year, y'all.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
An echte yetser you have? Good! Let us deal with that.
Two cups plain flour.
Quarter cup water.
Two to four Tbs cooking oil or schmaltz.
A pinch of salt.
In a steel bowl klop and klots di eyer with the oil and the water. Mix in the flour, adding more as needed and knead till you have a smooth dough, just barely tacky. Do not overwork the dough! You don’t want a tough crust.
Ball it, cover, and let it rest for about half an hour.
One cup coarse mashed potatoes.
One onion, chopped.
One Tablespoon cooking oil.
Plenty of salt and pepper.
In a frypan sauté the onion golden.
Mix the potato-mash, gilded onion, parsley, salt and pepper together. Adjust taste. A pinch nutmeg is good to add, but isn’t customary.
On a greased or floured surface roll out dough to a rectangle about ten by twenty inches, cut in half lengthwise, then cut each length of dough across into four.
Place a portion of the filling on each square, flatten it, and fold each square of dough over, taking the corners and pulling them over the filling to join in the center. A bit of whapping and tweaking to get nice square shapes is all it takes, if there’s a little dough flapping extra per knish, trim it with a paring knife. Or simply do as if making apple turnovers – who says you have to be perfect? Brush a little butter on top.
Bake thirty to forty minutes in the oven at 375 degrees (preheated) till nice.
[NOTE: 01/26/2009 - 'Rabid Political Feline' (a pseudonym!) followed the recipe over the weekend. And reports that the crust, well, meh. Alas. Meh. Filling nice, but crust.... meh. Well, I usually add more grease to the dough, reversing the proportions of water and grease (olive oil, animal fat, and butter mixed). But then, I LIKE IT GREASY (and I do not keep kosher). The effect, especially if using butter instead, is rather like a southern pie crust. Which, of course, is heretical. At the very least im gontzem apikorsish to da max. It is also a good idea to finish them by frying. Did I mention that I like greasy? It's probably heresy to mention that I eat mine with a dollop of chili-paste on the side........ ]
But, you could just go to Yonah Schimmel’s…..
That too is emmes a tayneg.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Mmmmm, lamb chops!
Had it with plakrijst, creamed spinach, and caviolini di Bruxelles.
[Julie's Kitchen, 250 Montgomery Street (at the intersection of Montgomery and Pine), San Francisco, CA 94104. 415-956-0785.]
If there are words in the text above that you do not understand, don't worry. This post is not about them. It is about four home-cooked dishes. Dishes which will appeal to the Indo-Dutch and Chinese among you, but are probably not appealing to Jews, Muslims, vegetarians, or people from the Midwest.
Treif, shrimp paste, spices.
If that does not scare you, read on.
Mixed vegetables cooked soupy with shrimp-paste.
Two Asian eggplants, two large green bell peppers; chopped coarsely.
Three to five roma tomatoes - peeled, seeded, and chopped.
Quarter to half pound chunked fatty pork.
Garlic, ginger, and Jalapeno, chopped.
1½ TBS shrimp paste.
1½ Tsp chili paste.
One Tsp each: paprika, sugar.
Half Tsp each: dry ginger, ground pepper.
Dashes dark vinegar and Louisiana hotsauce.
A squeeze of lime.
Half a cup rice wine or sherry.
Half a cup water or stock.
Layer in a claypot. Meat and eggplants first, then the bell peppers, with the tomato on top. Mix all other ingredients, pour over. Raise to boil, turn low and simmer half an hour with the lid on. Let sit briefly ere serving.
Mixed vegetables cooked soupy and tangy.
Half a bunch of leaf greens, one long Asian eggplant, half a bunch of long beans; all chopped.
One stalk celery, one shallot, thumblength ginger; slivered.
One Tsp each: shrimp paste, tamarind pulp, dark vinegar, Louisiana hotsauce, chili paste.
Two or three strips bacon, chopped.
One Tsp ground coriander, half Tsp turmeric.
Jigger of sherry or rice wine, pinch of sugar.
Two cups water or stock.
Put everything in a pot; raise to boil, turn low and simmer for half an hour. Wilt chopped fresh green herbs on top, then serve.
MANOK TJEAP KARE / KUI TJEAP KARE
Scant-sauced curried chicken chunks.
Four chicken parts (about one to 1½ pound).
Two chopped shallots.
Garlic and ginger, minced.
One TBS ground coriander.
One Tsp each: ground cumin, turmeric, cayenne, sugar.
Pinches cinnamon powder, dry ginger, ground pepper.
TBS each: chili paste, Louisiana hotsauce, amber fish sauce.
Four or five Kamiri nuts, ground up.
One cup water or stock.
Gild chicken, shallots, garlic, ginger. Add spices, stir till the fragrance rises, seethe with the sherry. Add the chili paste, hotsauce, and fish sauce; stir over low heat till it starts sticking. Now add the water or stock, stir the crusty bits to loosen, and simmer for ten to fifteen minutes more. Finish with some minced scallion and a squeeze of lime juice.
Simmered fatty pork with mushrooms and tomato.
One pound ng-fa naam (五花 腩 five flower fatty pork stomach), chunked.
A dozen black mushrooms (冬菇), soaked.
Three large tomatoes - peeled, seeded, chopped.
Coarsely chopped ginger and scallion.
Lemon grass stalk, cut in three lengths and bruised.
One cup water.
Heavy jigger sherry.
Dash soy sauce.
Generous pinch sugar.
A little black vinegar.
Brown the pork, decant the excess grease. Add everything else and simmer for an hour on low heat.
Palakpak: Handclap. Also soft-cooked vegetables with fish sauce. [01/22/09 reader A. Tamreng reminded me that 'palakpak' is also slang for what Lesbians do to each other. That, too, is derived from the original meaning.] Jalapeno: Mild Mexican chili often used green for a crisp and peppy taste. Shrimp paste: Haahm haa jeung (鹹蝦醬), a wet odoriferous glop available in jars on Stockton Street. Not the same as Malaysian Belacan, which is also an excellent product, or Philippino Bago'ong, which is chemically unstable and may explode in your larder. Chili paste: generically, a sambal. You could use the jar-sambal available from Huy Fong (who are famous for their SiriRacha hotsauce), such as their Vietnamese chili and garlic sauce, sambal oelek, or sambal badjak. Dutch brands of sambal are also available. But it is best to make your own by pounding ripe chilies to a pulp. Use Thai chilies or lantaka, and add a little liquid to facilitate grinding. Panggarap: Usually greens, eggplant, and long beans simmered with shrimp paste, pork fat, ginger, and vinegar. Tomato and turmeric can be added, or a fish cooked on top (ika panggarap). The term derives from 'garap'= shrunk by cooking, exuding moisture. Not to be confused with a similar sounding word, 'panggarak', which means the mob of angry Muslims erupting from the local mosque after the Friday sermon, whipped into a righteous homicidal rage by the local imam. Leaf greens: collard, chard, spinach, etcetera. Tamarind pulp: Available in Chinese and Indonesian food stores - look for asam, asem. Manok: Tamarao term for chicken, which is called 'ayam' in Indonesian. Tjeap: sauced, prepared with sauce. Kare: hot and dry spices, as used in South Indian, Ceylonese, and Indonesian dishes. Kui: Lumps, such as the butchered parts of food animals. Kamiri: Kemiri nuts, candlenuts. Aleurites moluccanus, called kukui in Hawaii. They are used to add body to sauces. If unavailable, a tablespoon of peanut butter or mashed walnut makes an admirable replacement. Su-ong: tangy stewed meat. Ba: Hokkien term for meat in general, but usually pork in particular. Probably a distant cognate of 'babui' (pig). Ng-fa naam: 五花 腩 - five flower fatty abdominal meat, also called ng-faa yiuk (五花肉). A cut consisting of alternating white fat and pink lean meat. Available on Stockton Street. Black mushrooms: Shiitake, Lentinula edodes:冬菇 winter mushroom, also called 香菇 fragrant mushroom. Usually available dried, they need to be soaked in warm water to soften. Discard the stem after soaking. Lemon grass: Cymbopogon citratus, also called Sere or Sae - a stalkgras with a pleasing lemon-like aroma used in South-East Asian cooking.
These dishes represent a triple transplantation: from Borneo before the war to Java after the pow camps, then with the repatriation of the loyalists to the Netherlands.
I ate these dishes there, and brought them with me when I returned to the US. They are Indonesian, but not really Indonesian. Think of them as food from a world slipped into shadow.
I have posted recipes of the same provenance before.
Rawon and Gangkiyap: http://atthebackofthehill.blogspot.com/2008/10/what-is-that-mess-on-my-plate-rawon-and.html (Javanese black soup and Tamarao potato and bamboo shoot curry);
Randangan Babui: http://atthebackofthehill.blogspot.com/2008/10/heart-attack-on-plate.html (seethed fat pork - an artery clogger that your doctor will not want to hear about);
Bulelitja: http://atthebackofthehill.blogspot.com/2008/10/head-hunting-chicken.html (headhunting chicken).
Sanak mantep - eet smakelijk - bon gusto.
That's just the way I am.
[Note: This post has nothing to do with Malacca (Melaka), Kuala Lumpur, UMNO, or PAS, nor with Mahathir Mohamad. But I am opportunistically including all these terms for the benefit of certain blog-aggregators. It's a cynical gambit. Oh well.]
ANYONE WHO CONVERTS BECOMES MALAY AND LOSES HIS CULTURE
From the first Muslims to hit the tip of Atjeh eight centuries ago to the present, Islamicization has been both a constant and an irreversable process in the Malay-Indonesian zone. Atjeh converted earliest (and prides itself on being the gateway to Mecca), the great empires of Sumatra and Djawa have been replaced by Muslim sultanates and susuhanates, and even Kota Ambon today has more mosques than churches, despite the long Christian presence in the Moluccas. Indonesia rules more Muslims than any other country.
However, several native ethnicities did not become Muslim despite conversionary effort and warfare.
The Menadonese are still solidly Christian, the Moluccers and Bataks are half Muslim, half Christian, and half Heathen (okay, so the math indicates that they're aren't quite stable yet..... religion is not necessarily a matter of certainties), and the Javanese are Hinduist Muslims - Muslim in avowed creed, semi-Hindu in certain practices, Hindu-Buddhist in magic and mysticism, and pre-Islamic in superstition and supernatural belief.
Becoming Muslim is an ongoing process.
The Atjehnese and the Minangkabau are similar in that descent is reckoned matrilineally, inheritance favours the females, especially as regards farm-property and the actual agricultural means of production (excepting pepper gardens - often developed by Atjehnese transplantees who settled outside of Atjeh proper).
Men are the backbone of Mosque and Madrasa, but must move out of both their mother's home, and often their villages, in order to make a life for themselves; a life which becomes less their own once they get married, as the property is held by the women. All over Indonesia you will find Atjehnese and Minang men engaged in business. Their womenfolk remain in Sumatra, and welcome them back periodically, before tiring of them and sending them away again. The men absorb Islam through mens' societies, and by going off to Islamic study-halls out in the countryside.
These are not patterns we normally associate with Islam, yet both the Atjehnese and the Minang are solidly Muslim. Far more so than the Javanese.
The Madurese are, apparently, also Muslim - but everyone else prefers to consider them devil-worshipping vampires and socially unacceptable. They are part of the Umma, but no civilized Muslim wants them in their Mosque.
Some societies have disappeared. Been swamped. Totally over-run. They have become Malay.
Anyone who converts to Islam becomes Malay and eventually loses his culture.
This counts especially for coastal Borneo, where every single Islamicizing society lost a greater part of its distinctiveness and acquired Malay as their language and Malay customs in lieu of their own. This process was in some cases sped up by colonialism.
Personal opinion about Malays
I am not fond of Malays. I find them bland in their culture, yet bitter in their bigotry.
Perhaps I am a racist. I do not like their food or their society. Tak suka orang melayu, karana mereka bukan bangsa adib, dan tidak halus.
On the other hand, I am quite partial to Atjehnese. Spunky people - stubborn and talented.
The Buginese are also admirable.
All of this is a preamble to a short Tamarao text I wish to present to you, the 'Rhetorical Statement Regarding The Places Which Are Habitable By Civilized People'. First in Tamarao, then in English translation.
NGABAENG PA KINATAO
Djaaa na kawm Muslim tamo mata-mi, ngitembiya ngon dapet wambo; pangkod, kreang, tembeng - kutamto marede, makaga nente angin. Dang samahang na Ngarab, Malayo, tan Lanon; Muntawan, Kwantan, tan Mindanawa, buwana-mi sametek gila-dugatso. Sepa tanggat nente dema? Tathapi hara balang hara mesti ne; esa lampo pa lelem, tarang tja. Esa pagad nente dambo, larang-kandong tja.
Translation: "The evil of the Muslim horde meets our eyes, the tribal war unity must not falter; long spears, swords, and war shields - all are firm, hard against the sky. With the commonality of Arabs, Malays, and pirates from the North; Sumatra, the Malay Peninsula, and Mindanao, our world is entirely blood-crazed. Who can effect against them? But above all it is essential to do so; one lamp for the dark, lo it is bright. One fence against the forest, lo it is a civilized zone."
Ngabaeng - expressive statement. Kinatao - the places where people (tao), and by extension civilized people (tao neang adib), can be found; all civilized places are one, all civilized people are alike. Djaaa - (pronounced jah-ah-ah) evil (from Arabic Jahat). Kawm - group of people who have something in common (also an Arabic term: sheaf, collection, aggregate). Tamo - to meet, to encounter or be encountered. Mi - second person plural possessive postfix (kami - we inclusively, kita - we excluding the person addressed). Ngitembiya - Ritual first person plural pronoun for the head-raiding war group; the collective of warriors, those who will take heads in battle, the fighting line of the tribe. Ngon - negative: cannot, must not. Wambo - falter, tremble. Pangkod - a long spear with abundant crimson horse-hear tufting below the blade. Kreang - kris; a wavy bladed dagger or battle sword much prized throughout the Indonesian area. Tembeng - painted war-shield upon which weapons are struck rhythmically before battle to work up the fury of the warriors and terrify the enemy. Kaga nente angin - hard against the sky: strong in the face of fate. Lanon - Moro pirates from western Mindanao, much feared as slave-raiders and despoilers. Muntawan - Coastal Sumatra. Kwantan - The Receptacle; the Malay Peninsula. Buwana - world. Gila - eccentric, insane, Gila-dugatso - having the coarse appetites of a carrion eater and the passions of a rabid beast. Lampo - Lamp, light (from Portuguese). Pagad - fencing around a field. Dambo - forest, jungle. Larang-kandong - Fields (larangan) and cattle-holds (kandong - also means bag or womb), and by extension the agricultural base, and hence the heartland of a society.
Evocative, no? I find it quickens the blood.
It presents a picture of a society that felt itself under siege by Muslims - as, indeed, many societies in the Indonesian world have been.
Prior to the Dutch asserting colonial control over lower Borneo, both the Buginese and Makasarese from the south, and the Moros from western Mindanao assaulted tribal territories along the Borneo coast. Several of the kingdoms that later came under Dutch authority began with Muslim brigands planting themselves violently among the natives, whom they converted by force or enslaved. Other petty kingdoms represent ruling houses given a new lease on political life by conversion to Islam and subsequent assistance from Muslim polities.
By the time the Dutch held these areas, the non-Muslims had mostly vanished along the shore, and the Malay rot had set in.
Now, alas, there is little to remind the visitor of aught else.
COMPARING ISLAM TO NAZISM
Member of Parliament Geert Wilders, who leads the anti-immigration PVV party, should be prosecuted for comparing Islam to Nazism, per the Court of Appeals in Amsterdam today. By such utterances, he was inciting racial hatred according to Dutch laws limiting freedom of speech.
[Note the absurdity ..... This meshune decision suggests that Islam is a race.]
However, the statement made by so many people in the Netherlands that Israel equals Nazism (and it's companion slogan "Jews equal Nazis") does not seem of much concern to the Dutch justice system. I am hard put to find any example of any person making that comparison - for instance, screaming it at the top of his lungs during a demonstration (as many have done) - being held liable for inciting racial hate.
The only possible conclusion has to be that, in the Dutch mind, Jews are not a race and anti-Semitism does not exist in the Netherlands.
[Based on my own experiences while living there I have to say that this is patently absurd. Did I ever mention that the thought of wandering around a Dutch city wearing a kippah gives me the heebee-jeebies? That isn't because the kippah might move a fashion-conscious Dutchman to advocate more stylish headgear.]
Haroon Raza, one of lawyers who petitioned the court of appeal, asserts that Geert Wilders' points of view have generated "massive social unrest", and says this is why he should be prosecuted.
[Note: fuelling anti-Semitism by outrageous statements, such as done so often by the Widow Duisenberg, former prime-minister Van Agt, and the politburo of the Socialist Party in the Netherlands, is by no means 'generating massive social unrest'. There are so few Jews in the Netherlands that most Dutch do not even know a Jew, whereas the Muslim community outnumbers Jews nearly thirty to one, and everyone knows at least several Muslims against whom they could 'not rest socially' on a massive scale.]
ATTACK ON FREEDOM OF SPEECH
Statement by Geert Wilders' political party about the decision by the Court of Appeals
[I provide an English translation underneath.]
De Partij voor de Vrijheid is aangeslagen door de uitspraak van het gerechtshof in Amsterdam. PVV-leider Geert Wilders wordt nu vervolgd om zijn denkbeelden en uitspraken.
Geert Wilders ziet de uitspraak van het Hof als een aanslag op de vrijheid van meningsuiting. "Zo zit Nederland blijkbaar in elkaar. Als je je mening geeft loop je het risico vervolgd te worden. Deelnemen aan het publieke debat is een gevaarlijke activiteit geworden."
"Als ik moet voorkomen, sta niet alleen ik terecht maar ook de honderdduizenden Nederlanders die de islamisering van Nederland afwijzen. Hun mening wordt in Den Haag alleen vertolkt door de Partij voor de Vrijheid. Wie komt er nog op voor onze cultuur als ik moet zwijgen? Dat sterkt me in deze barre dagen."
De politiek leider van de PVV wordt nu veroordeeld tot een rechtsgang die waarschijnlijk jaren gaat duren en die enorme kosten met zich meebrengt. Geert Wilders: "Wij zijn afhankelijk van kleine giften. De PVV is de enige partij die zich niet afhankelijk heeft gemaakt van subsidies. De uitspraak van het Hof brengt het voortbestaan van de Partij voor de Vrijheid in gevaar. De tonnen die we kwijt zijn aan kosten kunnen we onmogelijk opbrengen."
Wilders: "Ik beschouw dit als een zwarte dag".
Translation: The Party for Freedom (PVV) is appalled by the statement of the Appeals Court in Amsterdam. PVV-leader Geert Wilders is now being persecuted because of his thoughts and speech.
Geert Wilders sees the statement of the court as an assault on free speech. "This is how the Netherlands is apparently structured. If you voice your opinion, you are at risk of being prosecuted. Participation in the public discourse has become a dangerous activity."
"If I am summoned to appear (before the court), I will not be the only one on trial, but also the hundreds of thousands of Dutch who reject the Islamicization of the Netherlands. Their opinion is given voice in the Hague only by the Party for Freedom. Who else will (dare) stand up for their own culture if I am silenced? This gives will strengthen me in these perilous times."
The political leader of the PVV has been condemned to a legal battle that will probably span years and which brings enormous expense with it. Geert Wilders: "We depend upon small donations. The PVV is the only party that has not made itself dependent on government subsidies. The decision by the court jeopardizes the survival of the Party for Freedom. Affording the legal expense will be impossible."
Wilders: "I consider this a black day."
ORANGES = LEMONS
DOG = ATTACK HAMSTER
ISLAM = NAZISM
The comparison between Islam and the Nazis is just as incorrect as the comparison of Israel with Nazi Germany. Such comparisons obscure the true nature of the entities and concepts in question, and by themselves certainly do not contribute to a further understanding.
But as rhetoric, such comparisons prompt reactions - that is the entire point of making such a statement. And in that respect they are valid. Only by examination and debate about issues of concern can an understanding of the issues at hand be achieved, and certainly as regards the ideologies active among large segments of the population that attention is essential.
I myself would not compare Islam with Nazism. But I defend the right of anybody else to do so.
It is a free speech issue.
THE AMERICAN POINT OF VIEW
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."
If mr. Wilders wishes to call Islam barbaric, Muhammad an insane pedophile, and Sharia a brutally repressive system, he should by all means be permitted to do precisely that.
The Dutch would do well to remember that during their eighty years war with Spain (1568 - 1648) they themselves said far worse about Catholicism, the Pope, and the leaders of Catholic countries. As well as their own leaders. Which they continued to do for the next few centuries.
More recently similar statements were made, by Dutch public figures, about America and our politicians.
There is a long tradition in the Netherlands of outrageous statements and over-the-top commentary.
What the Dutch Socialist Party and its stooges still say about the United States and Israel goes so far beyond anything Geert Wilders has ever said that I am flabbergasted that they are still allowed to speak.
But then, their repulsive utterances are politically correct in the Netherlands today, and the Dutch establishment will sacrifice anything and everything for that particular sacred cow.
Monday, January 19, 2009
I waxed much wroth about him in recent posts.
See these posts:
Note that by the third post, an ongoing scrimmage seemed to have developed.
I disagree with several of the commenters. Which does not mean that I wish them to cease and desist. There is no conversation when the participants agree. Dispute is necessary - not only to further understanding (your own, not that of the person with whom you disagree), but also to sharpen the mind.
This post is neither an apology, nor an expression of sympathy for Dr. Mahathir Mohamad's points of view. By no means!
I shall continue to find his ideas odious (except, of course, for the ones with which I happen to agree - please see comment above about 'conversation').
It is, however, an acknowledgement that the man writes very well.
As can be seen from his former blog:
And his current blog:
On his blog, Dr. Mahathir discusses a wide variety of subjects. Not all of which are political.
Without giving credence or weight to his loathsome views on the western world and Israel, to which I would not wish to draw further attention either, let me just mention that I did not know that Malaysia made Mozzarella cheese till I read it here:
And further regarding Mozzarella cheese, see this:
Mozzarella Cheese? Malaysia? Oyvavoy!
But no more surprising than sambal badjak and sambal oelek being manufactured by Huy Fong Foods in Los Angeles (also manufacturers of Sriracha Hotsauce, affectionately called 'Cock Sauce' by its fans), a popular brand of kroepoek oedang for the Dutch Market coming from Chekiang, or ketjap manis made in Den Haag.
Not to mention Mooncakes from Eastern Bakery on Grant Avenue being sent to kinfolk in Guangzhou......
Dr. Mahathir also discusses the Bumiputra Policies and the race situation in Malaysia here:
And most particularly here:
Please understand, I am absolutely not endorsing his views. But if you wish to understand the Malaysian Bumiputra policies, the posts referenced above are a very good place to start reading.
[You should probably also look up the terms NEP, Bumiputra, Orang Asli, Peranakan and Pribumi (as well as the Indonesian 'Peraturan Pemerintah 10/1959') - these are all explained in Wikipedia and elsewhere.]
Go on, browse over to his blog - it is well worth visiting. Did I mention that he writes well?
Many posts are in English, some are in Bahasa Melayu.
And if you are looking for texts in Malay to sharpen your ability with the language, you could hardly do any better.
And they were invited to go back to the ovens, because Hitler hadn't finished the job.
PROTEST IN SF
Union Square, at the corner of Powell and Geary streets in San Francisco, on Saturday January 17th. From three to five PM.
The request to go back to the ovens was reiterated several times, by a representative number of people in the Palestinian and fellow-traveler section. They seemed obsessed with ovens and gas.
Probably quite a few of them owned pizzerias.
There were also several references to dogs in Arabic. One entire conversation in which Jews were compared to dogs in several ways was between two students from UC Berkeley - one of them allegedly from Gaza, another known to be Moroccan. It can be assumed to have been love-talk, as the Gazan was clearly taken by her fair complexion and fiery spirit. He dislikes Jews, and has called them inhuman several times in the past.
And this time, she would love him for it.
They weren't the only Berkeley students at the event, but, lest you think that the only Jew-haters in the crowd were Berkeleyites, I hasten to add that several others were San Francisco State students. SF State and Berkeley have a friendly rivalry going as to which school nourishes the most anti-Semitic environment. Having been to both schools, I have to say it's a very close call - kudos to both institutions for creativity and invective, as well as faculty and administrations that bend over backward to accommodate Jew-hate.
Both schools are clearly credits to their communities.
[Which explains the faculty members also attending. School-pride, or esprit, or something. School spirit. Yes, that's it: school spirit.]
I wonder which educational institution will claim credit for the masked thugs who subsequently followed us screaming threats and insults. I'm guessing SF State, but if UC Berkeley wants laurels for that, no problem either.
ATTENDEES, AND THE ABSENT
The event was billed as a memorial to dead children. It was attended by a cross-spectrum of Bay Areans: Palestinian parents and their children, Socialist Worker's Party Members, ANSWER volunteers, rogue Arab teenagers, aged anti-Semites, self-hating Jews and Gentiles from Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) and Bay Area Women in Black (several of whom are Presbyterians), and a number of other communities.
Altogether about half were angry WASPS, some of whom alleged themselves Jewish. The rest were Arabs.
Many of the children were very sweet, and gave heart-rending speeches about wanting infants in Gaza to sleep in safety. The most touching speech was by a little boy who in dulcet tones informed us "Israel your turn will come, one day you will pay, we will have our vengeance!"
The crowd applauded wildly.
Shortly afterwards, an angry WASP female started a chant enthusiastically taken up by many in the crowd: "FREE U.S. FROM ISRAEL, FREE U.S. FROM ISRAEL!"
A dried up stick nearby kept mispronouncing 'iz-ra-el' as 'da jooz'. He wasn't the only one doing that. It seems to be a common speech-defect, as I've even heard it before from members of JVP and BAWIB.
In between some of the speeches by children, some of their parents or teenage brothers made wishful reference to gas-chambers, plus 'kill ya ya bitch', 'gonna get ya filthy joo', and, most interestingly, 'go back where you came from'.
That last in a heavy Maghrebi accent to a female Sabra.
AND A FEW OTHERS.....
There were, however, a few points of light. Not all of the crowd was overtly anti-Semitic; several people had pained expressions on their faces, obviously cringing from the public exhibition of sentiments that they would have vastly preferred to enjoy in private.
The tall ANSWER volunteer, who had been a monitor at a previous emotional celebration of Jew-dislike two weeks ago (obviously not in the same role this time, because of the sponsorship by Bob Avakian's group), simply wandered off at one point. He may not have felt entirely comfortable supporting hatred that his group had not pre-approved.
One or two elderly church-lady types looked aghast and frightened at the rhetoric from the jugend, though they resolutely remained there in solidarity with their Palestinian brethren.
Probably the brightest moment was the beautiful little Palestinian girl, no more than five years old, who came up to me and held up her collage with hate slogans and pictures of corpses. I'm guessing every other adult she had met that day had praised it, and she wanted to share. She looked so unselfconsciously happy, so cheerful - aw shucks, kiddo, it's lovely. Thank you.
The fact that I was holding an Israeli flag didn't appear to register with her. She probably had no clue what it was. And yes, she was just the cutest little thing. A darling moppet.
One of my companions later told me that he thought some of the young Arab women were fetching. Striking, even. Utterly charming, in fact. So he thoroughly enjoyed holding an Israeli flag also. There is probably no better way of catching the eye of a fiery Arab lass than holding the blue-and-white.
It was a lovely hate-filled day.
NOTE: The plus-side of angry thugs wearing keffiyot terrorist-style over their faces is that they cannot spit at you. Even pulling the cloth down temporarily to let the phlegm fly is not practical - the spit is hampered and rather lackadaisical. Either that or the boys just couldn't aim. Shaking too much, I guess. Though we were outnumbered fifteen to one, for all they knew every one of us was a Jew (two of us were actually Gentiles), and therefore dangerous and a match for any number of them. Their spit fell far short of the target.
FURTHER NOTE: The only Arab chant this time was 'ba ruh, ba dam, nafdeek ya 'L' Gaza!' (with our soul, with our heart, we will 'redeem' you oh Gaza). The 'L' doesn't really belong there, but the chant needs the extra syllable.
Considering that the event was held several hours after the ceasefire, it surely demonstrated the peaceableness of Arabs and the likelihood of constructive dialogue.
Or at least, knowledge of ovens among their ranks. And indubitably that too is admirable.
Saturday, January 17, 2009
The two posts are:
Now let us join a conversation already in progress........
Nuanced Anonymous writes:
The back of the Hill said :"Changes in attitudes have to come from both sides - without reciprocation, there is no inspiration"
The first to do a good deed will be the better one. What is going to be Mr Back of the Hill?
We've already made numerous overtures - the onus is now on you to reciprocate. And though we've been waiting for what seem like eons, we remain, as always, patient.
And we still wait.
Considerably Less Nuanced Anonymous writes:
Are you trying to say that you only like people which are subservient to you. And you hate Mahathir Mohamad because he dare to speak up issues that you refused to believe.
We like people with whom we are not in conflict and with whom we have open and constructive dialogue. We have no reason whatsoever to like people who scream "death to America" and "death to Israel" at government-approved pep-rallies. Especially not if they nevertheless seek to do business with us, and profit from their association with us.
Yes, we dislike those who dislike us.
It is clear that your grasp of history is one-sided and extremely biased. You support Mahathir Mohamad - a man who is notorious world-wide as a Jew-hater, a racist, and a bigot.
Here, we have rejected the ideology of George Wallace, and that type of hate has been marginalized in the United States and most of the Western World.
You, on the other hand, elected his equivalent, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, to leadership of your country, and kept him, and his reprehensible points of view, in power for 22 years.
That racialist hate, and that dislike of other peoples, continues to live on in your country, and thrives among your people.
In that regard, you are true imitators of many of the modern Arab nations - societies marked by cronyism, repression of unapproved points of view, and support for terrorist organizations. What are the words screamed at your anti-American demonstrations? Hezbollah, Hamas, and Jihad.
I absolutely reject such typical and unquestioning Malay allegiance to pan-Islamist solidarity.
We are a self-critical society with a broad spectrum of political viewpoints; even statements which advocate the destruction of America and support the racist-ideology of Hamas have a public voice in our country.
You are a society that is scared of opinions that oppose your narrow and rigid loyalties to your own tribe and your own creed.
Remember, you are the people who have maintained the last remaining version of apartheid for over a generation. It is almost forty years since the racists riots instigated by UMNO operatives in 1969.
You are not qualified to discuss certain issues until you clean up your act.
First get rid of the Bumiputra policies and NEP, then we can talk.
Oh, and stop treating Chinese, Indians, and non-Muslims as dhimmis while you're at it; that, too, is a particular sore point. And well worthy of anger and dislike.
The day when the Malaysian government rejects the apartheid and institutionalized racism that they have enforced for forty years is the day that Malays will truly deserve our respect.
Friday, January 16, 2009
Many Dutch cleverly combine both hatreds.
And the Dutch, as we now know, are not inclined to be humble about strongly held opinions.
The worst rhetorical tendencies in Dutch are now obscenely on display, the Dutch are exhibiting their usually soft-voiced talent for vile dialectic at full volume, cacophonous and nauseating.
I am fairly disgusted with my fellow-Dutchspeakers at present.
A noteworthy exception is Rotterdam burgomaster Ahmed Aboutaleb, who firmly let it be known that phrases like "hamas hamas all joden aan het gas" ('Hamas Hamas all Jews to the gas'), "falastin baladna wa'l Yahud kilabna" ('Palestine is our land and the Jews are our dogs'), "itbach al Yahud" ('massacre the Jews'), and "al mawt al Yahud" ('death to the Jews'), are utterly unacceptable, and will lead to arrests and prosecution.
[The Netherlands has laws about hate-speech and incitement that in some respects are more authoritarian than laws in the United States.]
"Aboutaleb, maak het waar!"
But at this point, not only are the Feijenoord fans rabidly disgusted with him, but also members of his own ethnic group and religious community. Nor did this win him any friends among ordinary Dutchmen, many of whom either despise the Jews or loathe the Arabs.
There are nearly a million Muslims in the Netherlands. Most of them live in the Randstad (the conglomeratus of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and Utrecht). Most of them are urban. Many of them were born there, and many of them speak Dutch as their first language.
Dutch is the only language in which they read and write.
What you see in the videos of the demonstrations in the Netherlands are a few thousand people, fully half of whom are 'autochtoon' (native Dutch). The Rotterdam riot videos show a slightly greater number of people than Amsterdam or Utrecht, with a slightly greater proportion of allochthonous background.
That accounts for maybe about ten or twenty thousand angry Muslims, all told. Probably less, as the same people have taken part in several demonstrations.
What you do NOT see are the majority of Islamic-Dutch, but the rowdy problem cases. What you see are not the quiet shopkeepers, businessmen, or labourers, but the failures to assimilate. These are the people who are marooned between two societies, who do not even fit into their own ethnicity, and have no hope of ever blending into the mainstream.
As with all ethnicities, the problem cases tend to confirm to stereotypes.
The majority of every ethnic group are usually invisible. By assimilating, they fade into the background. It is only when members of a group misbehave that their ethnicity or affiliation becomes an issue.
The anti-Israel riots in places like London, Rotterdam, Stockholm, Antwerp - all seem to have rigidified ethnic/cultural hatreds. Precisely the same animosity as marked European society when the only groups to hate were Jews, Gypsies, and Lombards.
Europe has not changed much. But it has learned to share its hatred.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Yossi Izrael commented:
BTW, BOTH, that's not the primary meaning of the sentence. it means that when they do real chesed it's mostly for self-aggrandization or gain. Very often true.
CHESSED LE'UMIM CHATAS
What it really means is that when they do what seems to be chessed, it is suspect or flawed - their good deeds lack something. Chatas is derived from cheyt, indicating that something is not up to snuff, does not measure up, is insufficient. There is also a connotation of unintentionality, as the term chatas is an offering to atone for an accidental sin.
The corollary is that one is supposed to do chessed intentionally, with no other agenda than that it is the right thing to do.
In this case, the reasons for the support for the Palestinians from so many non-Jews are ab initio and necessarily suspect. The more so as more deserving peoples do not attract even half as much attention and outrage. Certainly nearly half a million Darfurian dead are at least as deserving as several hundred Hamas members?
What about the hundreds if not thousands of Bangladeshi and Burmese migrants tied up, towed back out to sea, and left to die by the Thai coastguard? The people caught up in the war raging in the Congo?
Obviously, these and many others do not count; their oppressors are not Jews, and in consequence their suffering, though far worse than that of Hamas, is of no consequence.
Now, as regards self-aggrandizement or gain: On the one hand, that applies also to many Jews (hence all those plaques honouring those who made a bequest, and the mentions in every Jewish publication of the names of those who made this or that possible), and on the other hand, that reflects the times of the Talmud; in terms of ethically or morally inspired acts, most Gentiles of that age were bribing their idols to do things for them, ergo the motives that caused Jews and Gentiles to act charitably had to be assumed to differ.
One can assume that a charitable act committed by an idolater necessarily has an ulterior motive, because the pattern of bribing the idol in return for rewards not only inculcates the attitude that doing good gets rewarded, but also posits a bargaining position vis a vis the divine.
The presumption of an ulterior motive to the idolater's actions is pithily encapsulated in the phrase ‘chessed le umim chatas’.
Chaim (Bray of Fundie) brought the phrase back to the surface of my mind nearly two years ago. It had sat there for a while. I think I first ran into it back in the late nineties when reading Neussner's translation of the Mishna and researching some of the ideas therein. It did not sit there and fester; it fermented. Fermentation is good - without it, there would be no wine, no beer, no bread, no aged cheeses, no matured tobacco.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
That is, if one is to believe and take seriously the hot-air coming out of some of their organizations.
The text below was forwarded to me by several sources, and has also appeared on Indybay and elsewhere.
Oakland Education Association Condemns Israeli Assault On Gaza And Role Of US Government
by Oakland Education Association
Wednesday Jan 7th, 2009
The Oakland Education Association which represents the teachers in Oakland, California has passed a strong resolution protesting the Israeli attack on the people of Gaza and the role of the US in supporting these assaults.
Oakland Education Association Condemns Israeli Assault On Gaza And Role Of US
The OEA unreservedly condemn the murderous Israeli assault on Gaza, their deliberate targeting of the civilian population, including schools and hospitals, and Israel's ongoing collective punishment of the Palestinian people which has been carried out with the strong support of the U.S. government. We support the Right to Return and call for the establishment of a bi-national secular state in Israel-Palestine.
In line with this motion, we encourage teachers to open their classrooms to discussion and teaching on the crisis in Gaza.
Oakland Education Association
272 E 12th St
Oakland, CA 94606
Hotline: 510-763-0900 Ph 763-4020 Fax 763-6354
Got that? Instead of worrying about the lowest pass-rates in the civilized world, instead of wondering why their graduates are virtually unemployable in a job-market dominated by literate people, and instead of despairing over their students pathetically struggling to grasp the adult sentences and straightforward English of How To Customize Your Glock (by Robert H. Boatman & Morgan W. Boatman - highly recommended), which might be the most useful book the little dipwads will ever read, given the level of gun-related homicide among the schoolchildren of Oakland, the Oakland Education Association feels itself called to issue a fatwa.
"In line with this motion, we encourage teachers to open their classrooms to discussion and teaching on the crisis in Gaza."
Quite the pronunciamento, that. Another fatuous utterance by a public body in the Bay Area that indicates a lack of functioning grey matter at the highest levels.
It is no mistake that we refer to Berkeley and San Francisco as People's Republics.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
[Other sponsors of the 01/10/2009 demonstration: Free Palestine Alliance, Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation, National Council of Arab Americans and Al-Awda-International Palestine Right to Return Coalition. The demonstration also had the support of Bay Area Women in Black (BAWIB) and Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP).]
PROTEST SIGN TEXTS:
America Out Of Gaza!
Amerisrael Must Stop Genocide
Another Jew Against Police States
Another Jew Against the Occupation
Every Zionazi is a legitimate Military Target
Gaza is a Holocaust
Gaza = Warsaw
Globalize the Intifada
Hamas & Hizbullah = Freedom Fighters
Hizbullah beat you ya kilab
In Gaza, Oakland, and Greece: No Justice, No Peace
Israelis = Nazis
Israel Jew Pigs
Jews are Terroist (stet)
Just Another Queer Jew to End the Occupation
Kill Ixrelly terrorits!
Make Jewisrael Pay!
Modern Day Nazis = Israel
Monster Nation Bloodthirsty Israel
More Quassems Peace!
Nuke The Jew State!
Obama is the enemy of world's working people!
Proud Union Queer Against Genocide
Smash the Jewish State
Stop the Racist U.S. /Israeli War against the Arab People.
Stop the U.S., Israeli Genocide
Target all Zionist businesses
The Jewish State is a Criminal Entity
The Real Terrorists = U.S. Israel
To Save Jewish Culture End Zionism
Want Peace? Stop U.S. Aid to Israel
Wiccan Against War!
Zionists Love Obama
[For visual confirmation of most of these, please visit:
Other's are viewable in self-aggrandizing posts on Indybay, to which I do not ever intend to link.]
INTERNATIONAL ANSWER'S ENDORSEMENT
Despite having more security monitors in attendance than ever before (nearly one out of eight demonstrators wore the yellow vest assigned to monitors by International ANSWER), these signs were not removed.
Ergo, by the standards of International ANSWER, the sentiments expressed were both acceptable and justified.
In both intent and effect, International ANSWER endorses all these slogans, as do the other organizations which sponsored the demonstration, and the individual participants.
Also endorsing the anti-Semitism, I should add, was Cindy Sheehan, one of the fiery anti-Israel speakers trotted out by ANSWER.
Certainly so 'strong-minded' a woman as ms. Sheehan would have had the gumption to insist that the message of the demonstration NOT be one of hatred, bigotry, and blatant anti-Semitism.......
Unless she supported precisely that.
"Some may feel satisfaction at repeatedly passing General Assembly resolutions or holding conferences that condemn Israel's behavior. But one should also ask whether such steps bring any tangible relief or benefit to the Palestinians. There have been decades of resolutions. There has been a proliferation of special committees, sessions, etc. Has any of this had an effect on Israel's policies, other than to strengthen the belief in Israel, and among many of its supporters, that this great Organization is too one-sided to be allowed a significant role in the Middle East peace process?''
Former Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi Anan, speaking before the UN Security Council in December 2006.
Herewith a quote from the Algemeen Dagblad:
"Israëlische vlaggen zijn uitverkocht in Rotterdam. Anti-Israël demonstranten steken ze namelijk geregeld in brand. ADtv vond toch nog een gaaf dundoek."
['Israeli flags are sold out in Rotterdam. Anti-Israel protestors, namely, regularly set them on fire. ADtv did nevertheless find one in still perfect condition.']
There's an embedded video in that article, in which the intrepid reporter goes in search of an Israeli flag, finally finding one in Vlaardingen at a flag-factory.
So, who actually buys Israeli flags in the Netherlands?
But not all of them actually set fire to the flags, despite what the article says.
Some of them carefully hide the flag in their backpack, and take it back to Amsterdam. Where they will proudly wave it at soccer-games, especially when Ajax (the Amsterdam soccer team) is playing Feijenoord (Rotterdam) or FC Utrecht. Ajax, as you may remember, is nicknamed 'The Jews' (De Joden).
And Dutch-Moroccan youth from Amsterdam, like all Dutch, besides being rabid soccer-fans also enjoy irritating the spit out of people. Especially their cousins from Rotterdam and Utrecht, who didn't have the sense to live in the capitol city.
After all, every Amsterdammer knows that Rotterdammers are stupid and have venereal diseases, and as for those smelly slope-browed Utrechteners, the less said the better.
NOTE: Here in the Bay Area, most Israeli flags that get burned are of course brutally snatched from the hands of elderly Jews, or stolen after ganging up on an Israel-supporter. But then, we don't have Dutch Moroccans here - we simply have vicious anti-Semites.
Which can be seen on Zombie's site, where there is a report about last Saturday's anti-Israel protest in San Francisco.
Comments on Zombie's report may be left underneath the posting on Zomblog:
KEFFIYEH - KEFFIYOT
One of the things that stands out about almost any anti-Israel protest in the Bay Area is the Nazi-like tendency of the anti-Semites to dress similarly. If one did not know any better, the ever-present keffiyehs would remind one of the Fascists in Italy, or Hitler's thugs. And while that is obviously the intent, the effect is somewhat diminished by the tendency to prove one's unique individuality by tying it around the face as if suffering from a monumental tooth-ache with several hundred similarly afflicted companions.
Take a pill, guys. You look sick.
Monday, January 12, 2009
Which represents a first, as the honourable Gerry Adams appeared entirely unaware that Hamas had whacked over a thousand Fatah supporters in the preceding several years, and was also clearly befuddled to hear that Hamas had sponsored bombings in Israel during the last intifada, and that Hamas had even fired several thousand rockets across the border since Israel withdrew in 2005.
BRUSSELS - A protest in the Belgian capital that drew 30,000 turned violent, with peaceful demonstrators overturning cars, throwing bottles and stones, and smashing shop windows.
Ten people were arrested.
CARACAS - Hugo Chavez expelled the Israeli ambassador, then put on his best party togs and rushed off to host a hate-festival at the main mosque.
KARACHI - Riot police used tear gas and batons to repel a thousand anti-Israel protesters who tried to attack a U.S. consulate in Pakistan on Sunday.
KUALA LUMPUR & JAKARTA (AND ELSEWHERE IN TANA UDIK) - Several thousand people screamed "chee-had chee-had" in a mass expression of illiterate outrage at the evil Zionist plot that kept them from having universal air-conditioning, running water, and access to porno channels. Then they looted American softdrinks from several halal restaurants, and screamed insults in public places.
At least, I think that's what happened. It's hard to tell with that lot, and honestly, I would rather ignore them. They're rather unimaginative.
LONDON - Tens of thousands protested against Jewish self-determination in the capitol city of England, which expelled its Jews in 1290. As usual, the crowd turned ugly and started breaking things, at one point invading a locally-owned coffee shop to refuel, trashing it in the process.
MADRID - Several tens of thousands of Spanish emotionally protested Israeli actions, drawing harsh comparisons with their own history of brutal savagery towards the natives of the new world, and bemoaning their decision back in the fifteenth century to ethnically cleanse Iberia.
Oh wait, they didn't.
They just excoriated Israel - it was the usual context-free demonstration of poofely European indignation.
MANILA - policemen used shields to disperse university students protesting outside the U.S. Embassy. Afterwards most of the demonstrators returned quietly to fill out visa-applications. As one of them, violent anarchist Manuel 'Bongbong ' Balagot, explained "barkada-ko all of them already diyan, and my auntie Korasong, she malimit telling about job sa Kmart in Daly City, my pinsan he need a new cd flayer ...."
He was told that upon finishing his medical degree, entry to the U.S. would be all but guaranteed.
NEW YORK - The collection of third-world gangster regimes, rogue states, and feral bandits hosted by the United States and collectively called the 'United Nations' once again pandered shamelessly to the dictatorships and humanrights disasters of the Arab-world by demanding, by gum, that Israel cease defending itself forthwith!
PARIS - The Free French celebrated yet another fire-bombing of a synagogue, as tens of thousands took to the streets to scream unintelligible anti-Semitic slogans.
RIYADH - The Saudi Government, which more than any other Arab government has done nothing to solve the Palestinian question, accused Israel of genocide by targetting Hamas fighters.
ROME - Anti-Semitic graffiti was left on Jewish-owned businesses. Later there were rowdy demonstrations against Israel in Rome and several other Italian Cities. It's better than soccer.
This despite the products in question being made locally by Malaysian companies - which, per fiat, have to be minimally 30% bumiputra-owned (as opposed to Malaysian-Chinese), which means that those who will be hit hardest will be Malaysian citizens.
Here is the notorious former prime-minister of Malaysia with a simplistic statement:
"If you stop accepting US currency, the US can't trade and can't make any money, it will become very poor and it will have to stop the production of more and more weapons in order to kill people. People must act... they won't die if they don't drink Coca-Cola"
------Dr Mahathir Mohamad
In one sense, this is an outgrowth of the xenophobia traditional among the kampong-electorate, though this most recent manifestation is because of our foreign policy, especially our support of Israel. Malays have an unhealthy dislike of everyone who is not of their faith, most particularly Chinese, Indian, Jews, and Americans.
Events in Gaza prompted the current boycott.
Very well. Let's look at some ideas. The U.S. is Malaysia's largest trading partner, while Malaysia is the tenth largest trading partner of the United States, currently allowed very favourable terms, and bucking for FTA status.
At present, trade amounts to over fifty billion dollars, mostly computers, computer accessories, telecommunication equipment and electronic goods. Nearly half of U.S. exports to Malaysia are semi-conductors.
Companies that use Malaysian manufacturing are General Electric, ConocoPhillips, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard and Oracle, among others.
MALAYSIAN APARTHEID POLICIES
Malaysia is one of the last countries practicing a form of apartheid, namely the Bumiputra policies, which give ethnic Malays (mostly defined as Moslems and Borneo tribal peoples) preferences over the Chinese and Indians. For purposes of discrimination, Chinese who have been there for several centuries are classed as outsiders, while recent carpet-baggers from Java and Sumatra are considered natives. Anybody who converts to Islam almost automatically becomes a native, though conversion from Islam to other religions is forbidden. The gentleman quoted above, though technically a foreigner (being descended from South Indian Muslim stock), is by the peculiar logic of the Bumiputra policies native because of his religion. Yes, Malaysia is also one of those countries where religion is a basis for discrimination.
The term for conversion to Islam is 'jadi melayu' - becoming Malay. Which indicates that the main targets for Bumiputra-policy discrimination are Chinese and Indian - precisely the people whose enterprise and gumption for the past two centuries have made Malaysia a modern nation.
The main beneficiaries of the discriminatory laws are the coastal settlers from Sumatra, Riau, Borneo, and Java, as well as the descendants of Bugis pirates and Minangkabau adventurers, who only since the clearing of jungle during British times have moved inland in substantial numbers.
The Bumiputras who do not benefit from Malaysia's peculiar form of apartheid are the non-Muslim tribal peoples of Borneo, who are systematically robbed by Melayu (Malay) and Melanau (Islamic convert speaker of Malay) settlers. Nor, oddly, are the Tausug and Samal (who are indigenous to certain areas of the Sabah coast) beneficiaries, as admitting them as natives would be disadvantageous to Melayu and Melanau .... settlers.
Ethnic Malays, of course, consider their discrimination perfectly normal. And regard us as less than human.
In short, this pestilential piece-of-drek country has utterly no business telling the rest of the world what to do. And would be well advised to shut up, and not try a boycott. Especially not now. Not if they wish continuing talks on a Free Trade Agreement to go anywhere.
It would be worth your while to bring this up with your elected representatives, and with the American companies listed above, as well as others. And I encourage you to let your voice be heard.
If you wish to tell the Malaysians precisely where to stuff it, contact the nearest Malaysian Trade Commission office.
Malaysian Industrial Development Authority (MIDA)
550 South Hope Street, #400Los Angeles, CA 90071
PH: (213) 955-9183
FX: (213) 955-9878
Malaysian Industrial Development Authority (MIDA)
226 Airport Parkway, #480San Jose, CA 95110
PH: (408) 392-0617/8
FX: (408) 392-0619
Here are other useful addresses:
Embassy of Malaysia
2401 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20008.
PH: (202) 328-2700
FX: (202) 483-7661
Consulate General of Malaysia - Los Angeles
550, South Hope Street, Suite 400
Los Angeles, CA 90071.
PH: (213) 892-1238
FX: (213) 892-9031
Consulate General of Malaysia - New York
313 East 43rd Street
New York, NY 10017.
PH: (212) 490-2722, 490-2723
FX: (212) 490-2049
I am sure that they will delighted to hear from you - especially as a frank discussion of the ethnic situation in Malaysia will touch a matter near their hearts. Either as the happy beneficiaries of institutionalized racism, or the resigned and resentful victims.
There are times I'm glad that I don't live in Delaware. In fact, whenever I think of Delaware, which isn't often, I am mighty gl...