Thursday, 6 October 2011

Picture of the day.

I have lived in London since 1980. I have been taking pictures in this place for all of those years. I am working on a book which I hope to publish 2014. Here are a tiny selection of images from the series, from now and from a long time ago, in young style and mature style.

Jumbo's website. 

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

John 'jumbo' Taylor.: Rushdie, lest we forget.

John 'jumbo' Taylor.: Rushdie et al, lest we forget.

Rushdie etc, lest we forget.

Quote - unquote Khomeini.
"I would like to inform all the intrepid Muslims in the world that the author of the book entitled 'Satanic Verses'. . . as well as those publishers who were aware of its contents, are hereby sentenced to death. I call on all zealous Moslems to execute them quickly, wherever they find them, so that no one will dare to insult Islamic sanctity. Whoever is killed doing this will be regarded as a martyr and will go directly to heaven."
Quote, unquote Jumbo.
'If we are all born sinners and live a lifetime of guilt trying to be pure and live up to the teachings on the bible (I don't cuz I'm an atheist) then why didn't god make us all pure to start with?, he is the divine and the infallible designer and creator is he not?. The answer is of course that religion and the bible is man made. I read that Jesus had never been heard to ask for religions to be created or places of worship to be built in his name. If he could see the terrible dangers facing the world because of extremism in the under educated crazily reactionary and suppressed parts of the world then I'm sure Jesus would say a very big no to intolerant mad-dog (dogmatic ) religion.
Can you imagine the Taliban with nuclear capability? Afghanistan? Syria? Pakistan? Israel? Palestine? Iraq, Iran? Libya?. Well some of these either have or are very close to having the capability now. If you do not subscribe to their religion its their god given right to kill you, all infidels must be destroyed. If they can fly into the twin towers. If they can go to a free and civilised country (Denmark) because of a wee cartoon and kill people (they have killed 3 people so far I believe), if they can put out a contract on Salman Rushdie for a book they are incapable of reading (Khomeini the dangerous lunatic who issued the Fatwa after seeing people on telly protesting about it in another country, never even read the book) They can very easily press a red button and inflict glorious and cleansing Armageddon on the world.. This is much more dangerous than the cold war ever was. I'm scared.'
secular humanism- noun.
any set of beliefs that promotes human values without specific allusion to religious doctrines.
Homosexuality and the church..... This is true.. sadly. A holy fellow (minister or priest I don't know the difference, except perhaps that priests have more of a tendency to carry a tube of KY jelly in their back pockets) Anyway said holy fellow once or twice a year (and a lot more often privately) vomits out a diatribe against the heinous, immoral and sickeningly perverse practice of homosexuality from his pull-you-in-pit. He cowardly waits til he sees who is in the house that day before he feels on safe enough ground to sound off. He likes a bevy and sometimes after half a bottle of the hard stuff and some holy vino ( Buckfast I think they call it) his vituperative rhetoric reaches a point that would strip the paint off of a door from 40 yards. He doesn't always spout his acidic bilious gay bashing filth himself, whenever posswible he will get a member of the conga-gration or a young acolyte 'just out of theology college' to do it just so he does not feel totally alone. (safety in numbers) Anyway here is the Tarantino-esque twist... he has 4 sons, and one daughter. Son No.3 (this is a secret so don't tell anyone) is tragically afflicted with the 'gay' disease. And daughter number one has a tendency to butch haircuts and doctor martin shoes, but thats a besides. Every-one knows son 3 is gay. Despite daddy forcing him to play rugby, grow a beard, have cold showers, introduce him to as many young (and not so young) ladies as possible (doesn't matter if they are Christians, he'll settle for any female with a pulse interested in son No. 3) and trying to seek other 'cures' like leaving dirty lascivious literature around the place to try and pique his sons interest in the female anatomy the lad remains firmly and happily ensconced in his homosexuality. Interesting situation yes?. This gay son happens to be a Christian, a gentle loving young man who fancies the church as a career. So...Does daddy denounce his flesh and blood as a diseased piece of filth to be cast out and disenfranchised to walk the deserts of middle Scotland forever, or does he look into his heart and examine what kind of christian he is after a long dialogue with the divine and infallible designer on top of the golden mountain who created his son, and the heavens and the earth? That of course is god a divine male. Tough one! I wish all of his offspring were gay, then we'd have a hum-dinger of a homosexual slanted theological debate. Re the girls why does the church never or rarely discuss or use the word lesbianism?
I used to be an agnostic, but I'm now an atheist. (I gave up waiting for god as I entered my 24th year of chronic ill health in a row, I must have been a right bastard in my previous life eh?, so atheism it is.
People have the freedom to follow any religion they want, it is their right (I would say god given but atheists cannot say that) Its a free world and we can all speak our minds, its a joyful and healthy thing to do. Many millions died and are still dying (fighting the execreble and horrific prehistoric Taliban for instance) so we can express our beliefs in total freedom. We must never ever forget that, and never ever..ever take that for granted.
I truly believe the world would be better off without religion, its poisonous and divisive and in some younger countries positively dangerous due to fundamentalism,( especially to women who are unclean and tempt men in the most immoral and outrageous!!). The good that religion does, and there is no doubt that it does good things, is outweighed by the bad, the contradictions, the lies, the inculcation of fear in the young and the gullible, the rape and mental torture of children by priests who are profoundly sexually frustrated for want of a good woman (other than a faithful cleaner, rarely a male cleaner).
Remembering the prosperous man who Jesus told to give away all his possessions if he wanted entry to 'the glorious kingdom' and to be pure..blimey where does that leave the holy men in the Vatican and other obscenely ostentatious and £ billion+++ lucre rich religious organisations when their judgment day comes??? Time for an ecclesiastical car boot sale lads,quickly!! People are starving while we hoard..hang on didn't the bible condemn hoarders? I could go on.
Another thing I believe and it is still even more true today is that most believers in biblical doctrine will rarely, if ever, seriously compare their religion to the competition.(creationist versus the evolutionist ?) There is a good reason for this reluctance. It is the same reason why religious fanatics will never seriously study "comparative religions", or any "true believer" will always avoid the alternatives...just in case.

The stronger, more untenable and increasingly irrational their belief, the less likely that person will ever consider arguments or even information that would contradict that belief. (Far too) Many believers have huge "emotional investments" in their faith and the 'good' book. Accordingly, it becomes much too emotionally painful and unsettling for such a person to contemplate (let alone realize) that their now comfortable and deeply satisfying opinion may not in fact be true. To admit that you were wrong, is to accept the fact that your years of "devotion" were ultimately wasted. Most people will do anything to avoid this agonizing experience. "You don’t have to look very far for examples of people holding on to their beliefs in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Thousands still hold to the idea that vaccines cause autism, that all life was created a few thousand years ago, and even that drinking industrial bleach is a good idea. Look at comment threads across the internet and you’ll inevitably find legions of people who boldly support for these ideas in the face of any rational argument.

In a new study, David Gal and Derek Rucker, from Northwestern University, have found that when people’s confidence in their beliefs is shaken, paradoxically they become stronger advocates for those beliefs. The duo carried out three experiments involving issues such as animal testing, dietary preferences, and loyalty towards Macs over PCs. In each one, they subtly manipulated their subjects’ confidence and found the same thing: when faced with doubt, people shout even louder.

Gal and Rucker were inspired by a classic psychological book called "When Prophecy Fails"...The case study inspired (Leon) Festinger’s theory of 'cognitive dissonance', which describes the discomfort that people feel when they try to cope with conflicting ideas. Festinger reasoned that people will go to great lengths to reduce this conflict. Altering one’s beliefs in the face of new evidence is one solution, but for... (the "Prophet's") followers, this was too difficult. Their alternative was to try and muster social support for their ideas. If other people also believed, their internal conflicts would lessen.This is where the carrot and stick approach comes in, comfort in numbers.

Festinger predicted that when someone’s beliefs are challenged, they would try to raise support for those beliefs with paradoxical enthusiasm. Amazingly enough, during the intervening half-century, this prediction has never been tested in an experiment – that is, until now.

In all three experiments (described above), Gal and Zucker found that doubt turns people into stronger advocates. More subtly, their study shows that this effect is stronger if someone’s identity is threatened, if the belief is important to them, and if they think that others will listen. It all fits with a pattern of behaviour where people evangelize to strengthen their own faltering beliefs." A person who has been a devout follower of biblical doctrine for say 60 years would be terrified to admit they were wrong, so the put up stronger walls, and batten down ever more impervious hatches. Like a child who does not want to hear, the will cover their ears and shout la la la at the tops of their voices.

Picture of the day.

Couple of years back in Aviemore the shows came to town. The vehicles and stands were covered in these profoundly sexist but superbly executed spray paintings. I took a lot of photographs of them.

These 2 are obviously nothing to do with Spray Art but I think they are cool images so here they are.