Abortion referendum in Ireland

The Irish government has announced that it will hold a referendum on abortion by the end of May. I just find it incredible that in 2018 the Catholic church still has such power in a largely secular country. I have a message for religious control freaks everywhere, stay out of women’s bodies, your made up misogynistic dogma was never acceptable and in the 21st. century is just a lazy, futile attempt, to hold onto what little control you have left over your followers and everyone else alike.

Fear is a great method of controlling populations and the Catholic Church is an accomplished master at this, brain wash children from birth with the idea that they are born sinful and then remind them constantly for the rest of their days that they are sick and need to be made better. I hope that the Irish people will throw off their fear of such nonsense and reject article 40.3.3, the ‘eighth amendment’, since 1983 it has given unborn foetuses and pregnant women an equal right to life, thus enshrining a ban on abortion in the country’s constitution.

Time to move forward as a nation again Ireland, reject religious control of women en masse.


Craig – William Lane and his white noise

William Lane Craig disables comments on his youtube videos but I can comment on his sanctimonious, holier-than-thou, word salad right here. Firstly, of many current theologians, this mono-toned bore is top of the pile of turds that represent the lies and harmful dogma of most religious cultists. His tone is that of a hectoring elderly witch, trying to convince her incredulous pupils to boil another bat. This a man/bot who is avoided by other debaters in the field of philosophy and and truth seeking. Lawrence Krauss realises that he made a big mistake in debating the windbag and Dawkins refuses to debate him on the grounds that he emits a droning, pompous white noise which Craig presents as ‘logic’.

In another youtube video he makes his ‘case’ against humanists, referring to them as cultists and accusing them of representing only the human species. He is not a stupid man but he is very capable of presenting misleading and skewed arguments. The truth about the humanists is that they look out for the welfare of all the inhabitants of planet earth, the animals and humans co-exist in harmony. He is lying again to deliberately paint humanists as morally inferior to his bible based ‘morality’. And that morality is so good for mankind isn’t it? Just look at the mess it has created. Hardly a page of that book goes by without, slaughter, enslavement, rape, genocide and the like getting the nod. Such a high moral bar the bible!

On the moral behaviour of humanists and indeed anybody who doesn’t use the Goat Herder’s Guide to the Galaxy as their source, he rejects the idea that they are capable of truly moral behaviour. The fact that there is massive evidence to the contrary, in societies all over the world is irrelevant to him, this man’s stiff delivery doesn’t help his cause one bit. All those years poring over philosophical and theological tombs have stultified what might have been a clever man. The weight of those religious texts and the anvil that must be carried according to him, (commonly known as the bible), obscures from his sight the morality developed from the simple phrase ‘do unto others as you would have done unto you’. It’s known as the golden rule and existed way before the bible and the Qur’an etc. Although Christians would claim the phrase for their prophet Jesus, it is already clearly in use well before Jesus, if he ever existed.

“Never impose on others what you would not choose for yourself.”
Confucius, Analects XV.24 (ca. 500 B.C.)

To follow the golden rule requires no god, just common human empathy, brotherhood, the desire to live in peace and live justly. The use of simple common sense and reason to see that we are better of living in harmony than waging war. Craig’s God is an ugly burden that has clearly corrupted his mind, hopefully his droning noise will soon be over, when he realises his attempts to pollute the minds of men are frustrated by the internet. A place where a massive burden of proof is required to prove fairy-tales.

Finally, the most annoying thing to all non believers about this man has to be the constant personal attacks on our morality, the massive arrogance he displays, in assuming moral superiority is both sickening and annoying, his decades of learning have taught him little about true morality, some original thought instead of pouring over ancient, irrelevant texts might help him think more clearly.


Trumps’ America!

Huffington Post

As the attempt to simultaneously give already super-rich Americans tax cuts and gut further the health care system, this is what happens to protestors, disabled or not. This is really a case where a picture is worth a thousand words, could you make someone feel more helpless?

Trump is hypocritically ranting on about his ‘support’ for veterans, how many seriously disabled veterans have to be treated like this until all patriotic American’s respond appropriately?

Meanwhile Mitch McConnell the tortoise faced Senate Majority Leader gleefully goes about disenfranchising as many Americans as he can. I suggest he will reap what he sows.


Loonies join Nasty Party

So the U.K. election is over and the fun is set to continue. The Nasty Party has succeeded in persuading the Loony Party of Northern Ireland (DUP) to back up their woeful attempt at government. We all know about the Nasty Party but maybe most of the mainland electorate don’t know that amongst the policies of the DUP are introducing creationism into the school curriculum, continuing to refuse to provide abortion services to women in the North of Ireland and refusing to recognise same-sex marriage. Despite several of their members being young earth creationists, climate change deniers, anti-science and naysayers of Evolution, they are set to become a different type of joke, a dangerous political joke of a coalition, a cabal of the wilfully stupid and the wilfully unfeeling and malfeasant.


The Progressive Humanist Party

I liked Corbyn’s vision for Britain, so I thought I’d have a go at creating my own progressive, political manifesto, it’s suitable for any modern country which values state funded health care, freedom of the individual, justice and equal opportunities for all. My party is called, ‘The Progressive Humanist Party’.

Looking to the future : This progressive party will aim to eradicate Conservative politics and its desire to take the country back to the 19th century, with its hatred of the working class and the aim to keep the privileged, born rich, as masters of us all. A new age of technological, government funded excellence will be born. There will be a government funded National Works Programme to build new houses and public services and maintain and upgrade failing infrastructure.
One of the by-words of a future Progressive Humanist government will be positivism, for too long successive Conservative governments have sought to do nothing but govern negatively and deliberately destroy by under-funding public services. Privatisation follows and what were Public Utilities and services for the benefit of all become money making schemes for a few rich share holders, many of whom are Conservative politicians. We will end this never ending cycle of austerity and asset stripping and embrace the future with bold positive programmes to create a fair and just society for all, with equal opportunity for all, funded by a graduated tax system, with no tax avoidance schemes.
The focus of this party will be excellence in health care and education and the rebuilding of an equitable society based on Humanist principles.

A Bill of Rights and Responsibilities : This would be a Secular Humanist Bill outlining the need for respect between all the various groups in society and we would include in the education system a class to emphasise the importance of humanism and empathy. Once written into law, the bill would further protect minorities, especially disabled people, where the laws are particularly weak. Sentencing on hate would be reviewed and penalties increased where necessary. This party believes that empathy through education, is a better way forward and a truly integrated, caring society is an achievable goal.

Defence : We need to press for the global elimination of weapons of mass destruction. Countries developing nuclear weapons, need to be turned away from this path, all options are on the table. The programme Trident, should be run down and hi-tech technologies developed under the guise of defence, should be available for the public benefit.

Hi – Tech Research : A new Future Industry Agency will be funded and aim to attract the most brilliant minds to further our understanding of the sciences and hi – tech industries. Inside this new industry will be a space exploration programme to further our understanding of the cosmos and eventually explore it via inter-stellar travel, we particularly need advances in the field of alternative propulsion.

Health: Without a publicly funded National Health Service, I don’t believe a Nation State can ever realise its creative potential. Good health for all is a given. The N.H.S would include the funding of hi-tech research and the education of Doctors, Nurses and auxiliary staff. There is no place for private profit within the N.H.S. A public works programme would include the building of new hospitals, teaching and research facilities.

Education: Education is fundamental to the growth of a modern caring, healthy society. The aim would be to create the highest standard of education at all levels, with higher education funded via the former ‘grants system’. A fresh look will be taken at the so called ‘academies’ and exactly what they have done to improve the education of the young. Schools will be re-funded where necessary and more money will be available to increase teacher numbers, teacher training, build new hi-tech school with a better understanding of the value of vocational occupations, as well as academic careers. ‘Knowledge for knowledge sake’, is not an outmoded phrase for this party, where eduction is concerned. The ‘dumbing down’ of society is directly attributable to poor education and this matter will be addressed urgently.
Current student debt will be re-assessed and reduced. A public works programme would include the building of new hi-tech schools, including new schools to help those most physically or mentally challenged. Class sizes would be reduced to no more than 20 and there would be a move to improve the status and pay of teachers. Faith schools would be discouraged and no public money would be available to fund them. All schools private, public or faith will adhere to a state curriculum. A new class, teaching empathy, humanism, philosophy rights and responsibilities, politics and why they are important. It would come under the subject heading of ‘Contemporary Ethics’ or similar. It is never too early to start this class. World religions from a historical perspective would be included in this class but there would be no inclusion of religion in the day to day running of schools.

Defence : Trident will be phased out as part of a plan to prohibit nuclear weapons globally. Current spending on the armed forces will be maintained and further strident efforts will be made to ensure that all veterans get the homes and treatment they need. A special effort will be made to deal with the awful effects of war on the mind. Current plans to build air craft carriers will be honoured but the whole future of the military will be reviewed in the light of rapidly advancing A.I. technologies and robotics.

Terrorism : Terrorism is a real and constant problem, all measures necessary to protect the population will be taken. At the moment the most dangerous threat comes from the countries invaded and bombed by the West, the policies of regime change, particularly where oil is involved will be turned away from and a new path of dialogue taken. But make no mistake, at home steps will be taken to outlaw the funding of schools, where the real damage is done by fundamentalist religious groups, hell-bent on imposing their form of religion in the West. The ideology that a God requires human sacrifice is abhorrent and measure will be taken to outlaw such teaching. To this end, hard line sects like Wahhabism, preached in some schools, will be outlawed. Individuals from abroad wishing to lecture and teach in the U.K. will submit themselves to back-ground checks and may be refused entry to Britain if perceived as a risk.

Energy : Oil has many uses besides powering industries, vehicles and homes. We need oils for the manufacture of plastics etc but this Party believes that the day of oil based propulsion is over. We will as technology and finance allows rapidly phase out diesel and petrol engines. To this end the newly formed ‘Future Industry Agency’ will work urgently to develop wave, hydro, solar power and other clean fuel technologies. The issue of how a national power grid will deal with supplying all needs in the future will be scrutinised and up-dated.
Clearly there is a need for oil based fuels to power historic and classic vehicles and this will be catered for in planning the relevant bills.

The Arts : The arts will be part of the school curriculum and it is this party’s intention to put art right back at the centre of society. Art informs everything we are and do, one quick look at history shows us that what often remains of a long gone civilisation is its art and culture. The learning of a musical instrument amongst the young has been shown to benefit learning in other fields due the the brain’s neural pathways functioning in a more beneficial way. Therefore music will play a much bigger role in our schools as will all the arts. Art academies will be government funded The lottery will be used to fund projects throughout all the arts and will no longer play an ‘either or roll’ with sport. The two disciplines are different and there is no need to mistakenly confluence the two.

Sport : Sport is not just entertainment, it should play a role in maintaining the health of the nation. As education is at the centre of any steps forward this party will take as a society, local projects in sport will be funded via loans or grants. With the plans for the dismantling of the monarchy will come access to some great buildings which could function as centres of learning for sport, the arts and entertainment.

Public Utilities : Since the 80s governments have sought to steal what belongs to the nation and sell it for profit. By ‘nation’ we mean the people. This corporate attitude will be ended and all Utilities will be re-nationalised and in public ownership. In the interest of competition private companies can set up rival utilities but access to the grids come with conditions.

The Banks and Tax : The money that was paid into the banking system to bale them out after the financial crisis will be paid back with interest. A Banking Commission will investigate and report on the bank’s activities and act as appropriate. New rules on tax avoidance will outlaw it, the tax codes will become much more graduated with the emphasis on fairness for all and major corporation will pay back tax for the preceding ten years of avoidance.

A National Bank will be created with optimal rates for customer satisfaction, if this is to the detriment of private banks, too bad, learn to compete.

Insurance companies will be investigated particularly the racket of charging young drivers astronomical premiums to drive.

The Police : The training of police will be updated to include current terrorist threats. Pay and standards will be reviewed. The idea of re-opening smaller more local police stations will be re-visited and reported on.

Rights : The hard fought for rights gained after struggles by workers with management throughout the 19th and 20th centuries will be revised in favour of safety and fairness in the workplace and where necessary re-instated. The right to strike will be looked at again and a solution found that favours a worker’s right to withdraw their labour. A lower hour/higher waged working week will be legislated for.
The right to access in society by disabled people will be reinforced and there will be a concerted effort through education and enforcement of the law to improve the status of disabled people in society. The punishments for offences against disabled people will be dramatically increased, there is no place for disability hate crime and ignorance of the law in the workplace and on the high st.
All minorities will receive better protection under the law and tariffs for all forms of hate crime will be increased. The new ‘contemporary ethics’ class in schools will be a priority to institute, it will address how we integrate with each other at a much higher level than previously.

Animal Welfare : A move will be made through education to help people make the connection between the sanitised meat product they buy in the supermarket and the sacrifice of the animal’s life that provided it. If we are to continue to be a meat eating society then we must achieve the highest standards in the treatment of animals reared for food. Halal slaughtered food will be outlawed unless the current methods of slaughter are brought inline with meat production for the secular market.
As to domestic pets, there will be a ban on all species considered even slightly endangered, this will include the trade in removing fish from tropical reefs. Puppy farms will be outlawed and the restrictions on certain breeds of dogs will be revisited and further bans and increases in the fines for owning them will be revised upwards.
The remaining trade in ivory will be eliminated.

Parliament and the Monarchy : The House of Lords will be reformed but continue to fulfil its role as a necessary check on the activities in the Main House. Hereditary peerages will end immediately and the seats given to religious representatives will be ended with immediate effect. The Honours system will be completely revised and the practice of giving honours to public servants who really have done nothing special except their job will end. There is no place for privilege and sycophancy in modern Britain.
The Monarchy will have a touristic and ceremonial role to play but nothing more. Homes and contents owned by ‘the crown’, will be taken back, current owners will be audited and their personal wealth evaluated with a view to taking back for the country what has been stolen from them over many centuries. Asset stripping or the hiding of wealth and valuable art and artefacts will result in serious criminal charges. Estates and homes currently owned by ‘Royalty’ will be used, where suitable, as public buildings and maintained for the pleasure of all. The process of disbanding the monarchy is difficult and detailed, it is certainly possible to find a way forward, which will acknowledge the long and complex history of Britain and at the same time restore to the people what is rightfully theirs.

The Countryside, Flora, Fauna and the Waterways : The hunting of foxes or any other animals with dogs and horses will continue to be banned and we will aim to ban this disgusting spectacle permanently. Laws concerning dog-fighting, cock fighting, badger baiting, hare-coursing and the like will be reinforced.
Fracking will be permanently outlawed and there will be a big push to trap, solar, hydro and wave energy. Wind farms will be only be built, out of sight of land, at sea. Current land based wind farms will be demolished.
The re-introduction of apex predators like otters will be micro-managed as the current efforts to re-introduce them have resulted in the catastrophic decimation of fish stocks. The E.A. will be revised and some of its powers mainly concerning the management of waterways will be stripped from it and passed to a new body dealing exclusively with the management of Britain’s water courses. The new agency will improve water quality and manage, pollution, flooding, the environment close to water courses and the management of fishing licences.
Very little of Britain’s riverside is currently available to the population and this is going to change. Land owners, where feasible, will be required to open up previously, privately owned bank-sides to a distance of fifty yards and allow for the building of access roads. The continuing clean up and opening of rivers and canals for navigation will continue with further funding and increased staffing. Clearly this is a project for many years but it is feasible with the weight of the law behind it.

The Internet : The internet is regarded by this party as one of the greatest achievements of mankind, both in terms of its possibilities for education and as a means to connect people of all cultures and thus promote harmony. Where internet connections are currently poor, as part of the National Works Programme we will upgrade where necessary and install connections where they currently don’t exist – where physically possible. There will be no further restrictions placed on I.S.P s by this party of the sort proposed by the dullards in the Tory Party. It will remain uncensored, censorship being the responsibility of parents and guardians.



Religious fundamentalists


right gate

The right gate, from ‘The Last Judgement of Pope Francis’.

Sometimes I feel like giving up caring about anything but painting and my own self interests but ultimately I can’t, because the reason I paint is that I have to express how much I care about our world.

One of the biggest threats faced by humanity alongside nuclear self-destruction and climate change is the rise in religious fundamentalism. I suspect most westerners associate religious fundamentalism with Islam but Islam is only one of three ancient religions that threaten the movement forward of mankind. Why is it necessary to debunk and refute the lies, the superstitions, the lack of empathy and common humanity, the anti-science stance and downright general ignorance of Catholicism, Christian fundamentalism (evangelism and creationism in particular) and Islam?

Simply because they seek to oppress and control us.

Since day one of Trump’s administration, the American religious right have been rubbing their hands with glee at the favourable conditions they now have to wallow in their own deluded shit. Tax breaks aid evangelical churches, new controls on abortion further oppress women and push back hard won rights to control their own bodies. Literally on day one of Trump’s office, world wide funding of help given to women seeking abortion and birth control advice was withdrawn. This may be the final wriggling of a very persistent snake as in four years progressives could seize back power and reverse such draconian measures. But for the moment many women find themselves in dire straits, punished by religious bigots for being born female, once again oppressed by bald–headed ageing men.

The way to defeat these people is to get out and vote and at every chance oppose them with science and empathy. Facts are hated by the religious right and their donors, a fact to them is like a slap around the chops with a wet cod, their hopeless comebacks ultimately involve a retreat to faith and the cover of their well thumbed contradictory texts.

My feeling of occasional hopelessness has to be mitigated by the knowledge that the fight back against religious apologists is quite recent and we have a long way to go but the fight can be won, as the light of education consigns religious belief to the deep shadows of its bloody, cruel and dishonest history.





There is no end to the oppression of women by the Church and the Republicans.

So the Catholic Church has great support from Republicans like Schaeffer. The Catholic oppression of minorities and women continues unabated, after President Orange was elected. The grotesque support of the Republicans for misogynistic laws means that the Church and the Republicans will challenge women’s rights to manage their own womb.
On his first day in office The Orange Clown makes it even more difficult for women to get an abortion, how long before the Republicans follow fundamentalist Catholic doctrine to the letter? How long before birth control is outlawed or taxed to the hilt? What century exactly is the American Republican party in? There are parallels to be drawn from American history with puritanism and the Salem witch trials.


President Orange and his cabal of deplorables.

So we’re in the first few days of Trump’s presidency and the Orange Pussy Grabber has started off as the misogynistic bastard he is. A cabinet of twisted old fundamentalist Christians judge America’s women particularly young women. Can there be anything more unjust, more anti-democratic, more un-American, more unconstitutional and less patriotic than a room full of white spineless, drudges controlling the reproductive rights of 150,000,000 women.

I hope Trump’s businesses are boycotted and I hope his business empire starts to crumble along with the businesses of his sycophantic children. The collapse of his presidency will take more time, a few years but it will come, he’s self destructive – bigly.


Being authentic in 2017

Happy New Year to everyone I know, hope that the new year brings you health, happiness and all that you wish for. We all have personal goals and ‘resolutions’ but let’s not lose sight of the fact that we could all love each other a little more.

One final thing – be unique, I’m sure it comes naturally to most of us but life gets in the way. The major benefit of being unique is ridding yourself of negativity, people who constantly downplay and criticise your best ideas are like clawing hands from the grave, cut them off where possible. Be unique, have a read here


Bonne année mes amis.


In denial! The festering prejudice of so called liberals.

I want to speak of a recent experience of how prejudice finally ended a failing friendship. I’d known two folks for quite a while, both claimed to have liberal credentials but early on in the friendship I smelt a rat when it came to black people or Jewish people. One of them, who had quite a ‘know it all’ but fearful, paranoid personality had grown up in Brooklyn and claimed to know everything about life there, of course the world has moved on but he hadn’t. Anti-Semitism was an issue in denial.
Simultaneously dismissive of the Germans too, they regarded them as currently being a malevolent force in Europe, too economically powerful and arrogant as a country. In fact when I look back I should have detached myself much earlier, but they did have some good qualities and I tried to see the positive rather than the negative.
I noticed that their language when Jewish people in particular were mentioned was always disrespectful, pushing the limit of what they knew would be acceptable to me. Jewish people were always ‘Jews’, practically spat out, never referred to respectfully as the ‘The Jews’ or better still, ‘Jewish people’. This is not a matter of political correctness but one of nuance of thought and language, if you claim to be liberal intellectuals then have ‘respect for your fellow man’ and then ‘political correctness’ is never an issue.
Anti-Semitism is a vile thing but more so when it extends to holocaust denial, one evening I nearly choked on my dinner while eating their food when they remarked that they believed that ‘only’ 3,000,000 Jewish folks and others were killed in the holocaust. I kid you not when I say that the word ‘only’ was used as an acceptable measure of slaughter for them. According to every current accepted and respected document the figure is double that and using the word ‘only’ justifies nothing at all, least of all such unspeakable slaughter. How anti-Semitic a society is, has become a barometer of how that society treats its minorities and its poor, disabled and sick folk. It is a litmus test for prejudice and you can rest assured that anti-Semites hold similarly negative views towards all other minorities. Indeed, the most obnoxious of the two in conversation with myself recently referred to disabled people as ‘cripples’ despite my known disability. Again this isn’t a matter of political correctness, it is a case of being respectful to your fellow man and speaking of them as they wish to be spoken of. ‘Cripple’ is a biblical term and should be left back in the year dot, sadly the person in question still lives back there somewhere.
So there it was all along – the prejudice under the surface – never more than a conversation away, completely denied when challenged and in this case it is too late for change as the arrogance of feeble personality types can’t stand to acknowledge further flaws.
I don’t think this is a unique case, there are many such folks out there believing that they are respectful of their neighbours and fellow man, when the opposite is the truth. Younger such types can be reasoned with but past a certain age most people are a lost cause and can’t change for the better. Anyway at the first opportunity which I knew would come I ended the ‘friendship’ for good. I can’t be around people like that, they disgust me. By acquiescing to their prejudice I was in fact supporting it.
And that last point is probably the most important to be made here, if you don’t speak up against prejudice and injustice, you are supporting it!