Friday, 30 October 2009

Larry David engages in oppressive hate speech

Larry David, star of the popular sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm, has come under fire recently for making crude and demeaning jokes about the religion of Christianity, a minority religious sect known primarily for being the target of all unfair prejudice and bigotry ever uttered.

In a recent episode of the show, David's character was shown urinating on a painting of Jesus Christ, a figure central to this little understood religious denomination. The scene has received criticism from many corners, as people stand up for the underdog of Christianity. It has been widely pointed out how unjust it is that this one small, powerless group is constantly beset by so much venom and hatred, while no other demographic has ever gone through any similar hardships or faced prejudice of any significance.

"Time and again, these so-called 'comedians' get to make offensive and disrespectful gestures toward Christians and Christian symbols, which simply wouldn't get said about Muslims or Jews," pointed out Will Bonohue, president of the League of Catholics. "Intolerance or mockery of other minorities like Muslims, gays, and women, simply doesn't happen in public discourse."

"Christians have always been patient and perfectly cordial with those of other faiths, and non-believers," he said, "but we still get picked on. Nobody ever gives us a chance."

Although they may not be among the regular big names in politics or business, some analysts predict that Christians may soon find a more prominent place in society. Rumour even has it that certain members of this minor faith may be considering taking part in the presidential race in 2012.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

"Kitten flu" pandemic danger

Even as the vaccinations for H1N1 - commonly known as "swine flu" - are being prepared for rolling out across much of the world, a new strain of the influenza virus is already causing panic, and provoking speculation about a global outbreak.

Dubbed "kitten flu" because of its tendency to spread to humans from domesticated felines, the new strain already has 17 confirmed cases in northern California, having only been recognised this week as a distinct form of the disease. It is thought to be so virulent due to the high proportion of potential carriers in the population - specifically, anyone who finds small furry kittens adorable.

Also contributing to the high rate of transmission (which epidemiologists have described as "alarming") is the fact that, on being warned that a particular feline is a carrier for the disease, many humans will scoop up said epicentre of infection and nuzzle against it enthusiastically, declaring confidently that such a cute fuzzy wuzzy kitten could never spread any nasty diseases, could he now, no he couldn't.

Doctors are strongly advising the public against deliberately rubbing their faces in the flu virus.

Although many health professionals are concerned about the possibility of a kitten flu pandemic, they have also cautioned against unnecessary panic at this stage. "The chances of the virus spreading nationally are still small," said the American Medical Association in a press release today. "The most likely scenario is that it will simply fade away in a fairly short time, much like baby hedgehog flu did a few years ago."

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

British schools to teach every alternative to evolution

A recent survey in the UK revealed that 54% of respondents would like to see alternatives to the theory of evolution being taught in schools - and in response, a new policy will be coming into force next month that requires every other competing idea to be given similar discussion time in classrooms.

In a spirit of equality, diversity, and fairness, the scientific theory of biological evolution will be supplemented with all other traditional and modern explanations for the existence and variety of life observed on the planet. Popular opinion has decided that the previous system - teaching only the model almost universally accepted by scientists and with a vast body of evidence accumulated over decades to support it - was unfair. The alternative explanations being introduced alongside evolution include the Genesis creation myth popular with some sects of Christianity; a similar creationist view espoused by the Qur'an, the central religious text of Islam; the belief sacred to Pastafarians that the universe was created by a Flying Spaghetti Monster; the Kiowa Apache myth that the world was created from the sweat of four gods mixed together in the Creator's palms; and many hundreds of others.

"It's important that our children get to hear about other people's perfectly valid points of view, so that they can make up their own minds," said campaigner and mother of three Julie Smethwick. She went on to justify at length her implicit assertion that uneducated infants are better able to distinguish truth from fallacy than qualified scientists who spend years testing hypotheses and refining theories based on a critical analysis of the available data.

"To assume otherwise is elitist and bigoted," she concluded.

Those teachers and activists who have been campaigning for a longer school year will also be buoyed by this news, as primary and secondary education will have to be extended by up to seven extra weeks a year in order to accommodate, in equal measure, every single explanation ever proposed for the origins of life, so as to be truly unbiased and culturally sensitive.

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Church of Scientology sorry to see Haggis go

In a statement released today, the Church of Scientology has expressed sadness at the decision of film director Paul Haggis to leave the church.

Haggis, director of the Academy Award-winning film Crash, cited political and ethical differences as his reason for parting ways with the organisation. It was emphasised by both sides that it was an amicable split, with no bitterness or animosity regarding their differing views.

"The Church of Scientology appreciates all its adherents," read the press release, "and encourages free and open debate on political and philosophical issues, among all those who have accepted L Ron Hubbard into their lives. We welcome any who feel that our way of life is right for them, but would never hold a grudge against any member who feels their life starting to go in a different direction."

"We wish Mr Haggis all the best in future trillions of years," it continued.

The Church of Scientology has also been engaging the public in recent years through The Xeta Course, a series of informative discussion sessions aimed at those who do not currently follow the Church's teachings, but who are curious to learn more.

Monday, 26 October 2009

Flash mobs disrupt postal strikes

Industrial action by Royal Mail staff left millions of undelivered letters and parcels around the UK last week - but this backlog was unexpectedly cleared by spontaneous flash mobs forming at depots around the country.

Postal workers staged two 24-hour walk-outs last week, over proposed job cuts and other disputes with management, and a further three-day strike is expected to begin this Thursday if negotiations are not successful. However, bands of activists - members of the public independently participating in an informally organised event - turned up suddenly at mail centres nationwide on Saturday morning, and began sorting through the waiting packages and arranging appropriate delivery.

A spokesman for Royal Mail management described their actions as vandalism, trespassing, and improper tampering with government property and resources. However, no criminal damage has yet been reported.

Participants in a flash mob typically learn and spread news of the event via social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter, and gather in apparent spontaneity at some pre-determined time and location, dispersing quickly after some planned group activity has taken place. On this occasion, thousands of people are estimated to have got involved, most of them staying for several hours. The backlog of deliveries is now mostly cleared, the remainder consisting almost solely of packages with an unclear address or insufficient postage, which the group was reportedly unprepared to handle.

This is the second instance of a flash mob standing in for workers engaged in industrial action, and acting for the public good. In 2007, a 24-hour tube strike failed to significantly disrupt London businesses, after the trains were taken over by amateur volunteers who successfully ran the service with only minor delays.

Friday, 23 October 2009

Hitler disrupts Question Time

BNP chairman Nick Griffin's controversial appearance on BBC's Question Time took an unexpected turn last night, when notorious German dictator Adolf Hitler stood up from his seat in the audience and began haranguing the right-wing MP.

Host David Dimbleby appeared shocked when Hitler, who had not been billed as a guest on the discussion panel, and who was widely believed to have died in Berlin in 1945, interrupted an answer that Griffin was giving to a question about immigration.

"What kind of self-respecting xenophobe comes on a TV chat show and doesn't have the balls to vociferously denounce a single inferior ethnic group?" Hitler demanded. "If you're going to get yourself a reputation such that people keep comparing you to me, you should show some goddamn backbone! You're such a pansy, it's actually bringing my name into disrepute!"

"And I'm Hitler!" he added.

Griffin did not reply at the time, and the irate fascist was escorted from the building by security personnel moments later, still yelling about "that feeble excuse for an ideologue". The discussion adjourned for approximately twenty minutes, before resuming as before.

The programme was otherwise uneventful, except for sporadic fits of giggling from Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice Jack Straw, who was also on the panel. When questioned about this, he explained that he was amused by the irony of someone with Adolf Hitler's famous deficiency calling somebody else's balls into question.