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French Riots Lead to Crackdown on Blogs 1020

Posted by Zonk
from the can't-talk dept.
Browncoat writes "Wired reports that because of the recent riots in France, authorities have shut down a blog called Hardcore, whose participants have allegedly violating a French law concerning violent speech. Many bloggers fear there will be consequences for them if they are outspoken, even if it is in a nonviolent way. From the article: 'Ahmed Meguinia, a political activist who saw some of the Paris region's hardest-hit areas during the past week, said many bloggers feared prosecution for publishing even nonviolent content. While not condoning blogs that incited violence, he said that there was a lack of media coverage explaining why ethnically segregated inhabitants of some of France's poorest cities have been driven to riot. Instead, the world repeatedly sees CNN images of burning cars and shops, he said.'"
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French Riots Lead to Crackdown on Blogs

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  • by G4from128k (686170) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @09:33AM (#13997303)
    Many of the rioters live in areas with 30% unemployment. French labor laws make labor expensive (high wages, 35 hour work week, long vacations) and risky -- if you can't easily fire someone, you're going to think twice about hiring them.

    France may be a worker's paradise, but only if you if have a job.

  • by dptalia (804960) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @09:35AM (#13997327) Homepage Journal
    This is a very good article on some of the reasons behind the rioting:
    A French War of the Worlds [jewishworldreview.com]
    The author has lived in France for several decades and this is what he says:

    In a nation that insists immigrants accept the monolithic secular French culture, a great divide has grown. Part of it is the insular nature of Islamic North African culture. But much of it is that "French" France still rejects its North African countrymen.

    They don't get good jobs or decent financial opportunities. Their unemployment rate is often as high as 50%. There isn't a single Frenchman or Frenchwoman of North African origin (or black, for that matter) in the cabinet, and only a handful hold any position of rank in the civil and commercial bureaucracy. There are virtually no black or Arab anchors on French TV, or North African cultural presence in the theater or cinema.

    This has further angered the Muslim population, driving it deeper into its own ghetto mentality and to communal violence. When I first came to France 50 years ago, North African immigrants spoke Maghreb Arabic, but their French-born children proudly spoke French. Today, the beurs, the young French-born generation of North Africans, talk to each other in Arabic.

  • Choice Doublespeak (Score:4, Interesting)

    by SPYvSPY (166790) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @09:47AM (#13997446) Homepage
    "Driven to riot" implies a lack of accountability on the part of the people looting and burning one of history's great civilizations. I find the argument that inflammatory statements from the French government are the direct cause of the riots offensively absurd, esp. in light of France's reputation for pandering to the multicultural tolerance dogma. The sad truth is that it is this so-called "tolerance" that fueled the fire in the first place. Blogs are not sanctified absolutely by virtue of free speech (esp. if those blogs are being used to incite and coordinate violent attacks on the public). Does anyone really believe that freedom of speech extends to tactical communications in promotion of mayhem? And if the police don't stop the riots, the same people protesting the violation of personal freedom are going to protest the inefficacy of the police. It's all so depressingly predictable and pathetic.
  • Bullshit (Score:5, Interesting)

    by flimflam (21332) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @09:50AM (#13997478) Homepage
    Most of these youth's, while poorly integrated into French society, are second generation French citizens, who speak French as their first (and largely only) language.
  • Re:Vive la France! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by slavemowgli (585321) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @09:56AM (#13997534) Homepage
    Roman Polanski was not convicted; he left the USA after he learned that the plea bargain that had been struck was not going to be upheld by the judge. And since he's a French citizen, France will not extradite him to the USA (which I think is understandable - would the USA extradite a US citizen to France?).

    Of course, that doesn't explain why he wasn't arrested and tried in France. But at least let's stick to the facts, OK? Everyone deserves to be treated fairly, even an alleged child abuser (although whether a 13-year old can still be considered a "child" is unclear to me; "teen abuser" would probably be a more appropriate term. But of course, that doesn't evoke the same images of five-year olds being abused.)
  • by Hrvat (307784) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:01AM (#13997582)
    You are correct. I've lived in Europe before moving to US and I can tell you that racial relations in the US are decades ahead of those in Europe. Again, most of the problem is in educating the people and making them sensitive to racial issues.

    My most shocking moment was when I went back home for a summer and I was sitting down chatting with my mother's neighbor, half watching some kind of Spanish soap opera. In any case, the show portrayed some African slaves to which the neighbor commented how the slave features resembled those of monkeys. I was shocked. You'd never hear something like in US (at least I hope not).

    The neighbor never had any contact with anyone of remotely African descent and had only media supplied notions of race. Since there are virtually no positively portrayed dark skinned people in the media (outside of US movies) it is easy to dehumanize them and peg them as antisocial.
  • by RobotRunAmok (595286) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:01AM (#13997585)
    Beverly Hills is 'ethnically segregated' too.

    Actually, it's not. Plenty of rich African Americans there. I can't tell their religion from merely looking at them, of course, but I see no reason to believe why there is no higher or lower percentage of Muslims among them. I think having Cosby or Denzel as your neighbor _raises_ your property value there.

    Upper West Side of Manhattan, different story. If the entire first string of the Knicks announced they were moving into the apartment upstairs your Co-op board would suddenly pass a law forbidding anyone taller than 6'3" from owning an apartment there due to "Post 9/11 fire safety issues."
  • by erroneus (253617) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:10AM (#13997676) Homepage
    To be frank (though not French) I actually knew very little about what has been going on over there and I'll have to admit further that I had only a mild indication of what was going on a mere two or three days ago. (I don't watch mainstream news these days and I haven't heard much on the radio on my way to or from work either.) So the depth of this story is somewhat new to me today.

    So I pulled up google and queried, "why are there riots in france?" (literally) and I came up with a variety of links where, unsurprisingly, wikipedia was the most definitive on the subject. It's basically about unfair or otherwise misbehaving authorities coming down on black muslim youth. So it's not just in the USA. The wiki article also went on to explain that this situation has been growing for quite some time and that France's non-particiation in the Iraq war and such was likely, at least in part, related to France's domestic problem that would have undoubtedly exploded had they joined with Bush. (This brings entirely new light to the anti-French sentiment much of the US has felt... people need to know more about this and their reasons I think.)

    Okay so it made Slashdot because someone added an anti-blogging spin on it. Good. So now I will opine about this as well.

    Speech is just speech until someone acts on it. Can it be any more clear? I know we can't all be people who think for themselves, but it's sad and even offensive when law is written presuming that we can't, in fact, think for ourselves... further, it might not be too far to say that such law even attempts to make illegal independant thought.
  • by ScentCone (795499) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:10AM (#13997679)
    ... would seem to be a no-brainer, in terms of making the distinction. But France (and Germany) has a pretty long post-WWII history of making very strange distinctions (or not) between those things. The mess they're in now is shining a pretty bright light on some of their culture's built-in legal and philosophical oddities. Much is being made about France's supposed inability to integrate immigrants into their wider society, but there's more to it than that.

    I spent some time yesterday talking to my neighbor who is from Cameroon, in Africa. Their culture was impacted considerably by German colonialism, and then lurched into Frenchness when the French were handed that German turf after WWII. As a result, many people from his generation head to France for higher education, and indeed, he has relatives there. He fondly recalled traveling there (and across Europe) as a younger man 15 years ago, and says that he hates it now because "it's no longer France."

    He's appalled by the unwillingness of many people that move there to even learn French or fully grasp how the country works. He says that some people there do wish that it was easier to snap their fingers and "be" French - with all of the social niceties and better paying work that might suggest - but that the problem is more in the objectives of the immigrants. His personal take on it is that, indeed, it's not Moroccans (as an example) wanting to move to France, it's Morrocans wanting to move Morroco to France.

    At any rate, he came here (to the US), and is working his ass off in two different businesses (wireless networking and carpet cleaning!). He came here with very little, and now has a decent house (luxurious, he says, by any standard he would otherwise have enjoyed in Cameroon or in France) and just bought his equally hard working wife a nice Mercedes.

    He uses the internet for VoIP chats with his friends in France and Africa, haunts many message boards and blogs in both places, and encourages his relations in France to do the same. His take on it is that the French have become completely schizoid on this entire bundle of issues. They preach a culture/color-blind take on all things governmental (which he applauds), and seem to let into the country pretty much anyone who feels like being there (which he thinks is crazy). But his main observation was that the socialist aspects of the French government/economy are chiefly to blame for everything that's happening. He has a bird feeder out behind his house and laughs when the squirrels fight over the sunflower seeds - but he says that's pretty much what's happening in the immigrant-heavy French suburbs right now... people moving there for the welfare-ish resources, and now erupting into a frenzy over the ramifications of living like that (in contrast to the country's better-off people, but - according to my neighbor - still better off than they would be where they came from). I asked him if his perceptions are typical, and he said that he wishes they were (in the French 'burbs), but that they are among the extended Cameroonian ex-pat community in the DC area. He's shaking his head over the whole thing, and says he wishes that France would lighten up on the whole free speech thing, but that it would tighten up on immigration. The biggest thing, though, is the complete fear (on the part of law enforcement) of even entering some neighborhoods. The police there are completely powerless to deal with the thuggier elements in the public housing ghettos, and have pretty much thrown up their hands.
  • Some of their opponents have found other avenues of protest ...

    I was debating how unwholesome KK Donuts are, and came across this defacement of the current Krispy Kreme wiki entry (who says wikis aren't up-to-the-minute)...

    I can see bloggers who are afraid to post in their own countries adopting this tactic.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krispy_Kreme [wikipedia.org]

    While Krispy Kreme serves up a variety of doughnuts, it is most famous for its traditional glazed doughnut, a very light, aromatic doughnut covered in glaze and often served warm. Many grocery stores, convenience stores, gas stations, and some WALMARTS in Jamaica and in the car torching, angry, tea drinking, country of france also carry Krispy Kreme doughnuts. Besides stores in Jamaica and France, Krispy Kreme operates stores on Mars, Jupiter, and Mr. White's head(only on weekends).Although growth of the chain was steady before the company went public, profits have decreased substantially due to big foot stealing all the goods, whiney customers, and some very annoying, sandal wearing, forest giraffes. Because of the invasion, many Krispy Kreme locations have now shut down due to un-profitability (because of that stupid oversized gorilla). Though Krispy Kreme has blamed the downfall on the french as well, this has not been proven.

    Most stores are constructed with a long window between the customer area and the kitchen in case the workers need to fight off the forest giraffes with michettes. Each store has a neon "HOT" sign to indicate when fresh hot doughnuts are available. Usually, when the "HOT" sign is on, Krispy Kreme will give out a free hot doughnut as you enter, or they did until the japanese mob stole them all. The End?

  • by ickoonite (639305) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:14AM (#13997712) Homepage
    The BBC coverage of the rioting has been unapologetically anti-authority, if not ostensibly so then with a clear leftist undertone. They don't condone the rioters' actions, but are not afraid to cite the likely causes - neglect of what have become inner-city ghettoes and discrimination against the inhabitants.* Of course, CNN would be given its marching orders if it was even seen to be being anti-white/Christian/etc. and pro-Islam.

    And I for one cannot say that I am even slightly surprised by the rioting. The white French attitude has always been shamelessly xenophobic, and finally it has come back to bite them in the arse, so to speak.

    In Britain, anyway, we've always known the French like a bit of authoritarianism. So the censoring of blogs doesn't come as much of a surprise.

    iqu :D

    (* This is not to say that the UK is not without its racial tensions. Indeed, that country is at the moment engaged in something of a debate over "multiculturalism" - whatever that is - as it tries to decide how best to respond to the bombings of 7th July. But as so many will attest, in France, there is no shame in xenophobia, and it permeates the entire system, from the layman on the street to the judiciary and the politicians. Perfick tho' it most certainly ain't, there is at least some sense that xenophobia and discrimination are wrong.)
  • by Tony Hoyle (11698) <tmh@nodomain.org> on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:15AM (#13997731) Homepage
    On a visit to the US I was shocked whilst travelling on the coach through florida by US attitudes - looking down from the highway you can see some wooden houses in an obviously poor area embedded right in the middle of all the highrise buildings. On enquiry our american tour guide said "that's where we keep all the black people" and was surprised that we were shocked by her statement..

    Racism exists everywhere in pockets.. It's by no means the majority (although the concept of a state housing people ethnically calls means that there's a fair bit of state racism in florida at least). I've rarely come across it here, but this is a *very* multicultural city.. a racist would have driven themselves nuts within days...
  • by Guppy06 (410832) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:18AM (#13997772)
    "you mix up african and north-african (arabic) culture."

    They are from the African continent, are they not? Or am I not "American" because I have fair skin and speak neither Spanish nor Portugese? Are people in the United States and Canada "European?"
  • by Yvanhoe (564877) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:20AM (#13997788) Journal
    Destroying property Correct, thousands of cars and tens of buildings were set afire
    Raping None reported. And god knows that if there were only rumors, far-right would cry it out loud
    killing people Zero rioters killed. Zero policemen killed. One (and probably two soon) innocent bystanders killed (which is in the average criminality for a quiet week)
    Number of shots fired during the first week : 4. (I didn't followed the events during the second week where I knew there has been shotgun shots in one suburb, without killing people btw)

    I believe that what is called "riots" here would be called "life as usual" in America. The only spectacular events are the arsons, which are inacceptables, I agree.
  • by wytcld (179112) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:27AM (#13997853) Homepage
    Have you seen the worst high-rise housing projects outside Paris? They've very similar to the worst projects in Chicago; worse than the worst in New York City. When thousands of Algerians moved to France after WWII (because Algeria was still French territory then), the French government place them in these projects.

    Okay, so let's say that you, and a bunch of people of your culture (whatever that is) were displaced to, say, China. The Chinese government built a high-rise ghetto for you all. Schools would not tolerate your children speaking English, and the only jobs available, if any, for you and your children were the most menial. You could not wear the symbols of your religion. The Chinese police would randomly detain and beat your children on the street. When you went into Chinese stores, you'd hear nasty comments, and sometimes the store employees would refuse to even serve you. (Hell, I've had that experience in France merely for being American, years back when they still officially liked us.)

    But the Chinese give you enough noodles to stay alive, and even enough cash to buy a cheap TV. The TV shows are all in Chinese, and have no characters who look at all like you. But you should feel so lucky to be in China being treated so generously to housing and noodles and TV. After all, once the Chinese got tired of lending America's immense trade surplus back to us so we could continue to buy cheap Chinese goods, our economy collapsed. Yes, it's 100 years from now, and where you used to live in America is, by modern Chinese standards, a slum.

    So when your children riot, you understand why the Chinese don't give you a break. And why conservative in Thailand post to their neoblogs about how your children are "witless adolescents feeling sorry for themselves."
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:32AM (#13997888)
    Anything else I can clear up for you?
    I think you got it all wrong.

    The people rioting are second/third generation of immigrants.
    Theirs parents were segregated but wouldn't protest as they didn't feel France was their home country.
    The new generations do actually *conform*, they grew up in france, watch the same tv, went to the same school, speak french, eat the same food, etc, etc...
    Their problem is that society as a whole doesn't really recognize them as such...
    For example highly-educated french of north african origins hardly find jobs, even if they're fully qualified...

    A basic example is the police contols: "white" french are hardly ever controlled by the police for no reason (after 30 year in france, the only time i was controlled was for smoking pot in a park...).
    But "colored" french in remote suburbs often suffer identity controls several times a day...policemen usually know them so well they even know their names ! Imagine a policemen calling you by your own name and then asking for your identification papers, how can you feel as a legit citizen ??

    Sure there are extremists who hate france, europe, freedom, doesn't speak french and want to burn europe....but they're such a small group they wouldn't even be noticed by mainstream media.
    The people you're talking don't usually behave like this, they're just fed up and can't stand the situation anymore, and moreover they are *KIDS*, i mean people in the likes of 11-15, reckless kids like you prolly were, *driven* by the mass (and the so called mainstream medias)...

    It's a shame you can't tell the difference between them and the image FOX's anchorman as of al-qaeda's terrorists...
  • I never knew why. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Spy der Mann (805235) <spydermann.slash ... m ['ail' in gap]> on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:34AM (#13997908) Homepage Journal
    I just watch on the news: Another riot in france... but I see no political analysis on this thing. Why the riots? Who are those people?
  • by will_die (586523) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:47AM (#13998037) Homepage
    Is it sliming when I say the U.S. president lied about WMD
    When did he lie about WMD? Unless you are one of thoses that believe that they knew that WMD did not exist at all; unlike the rest of the world.
    responsible for all the civilians being slaughtered there
    So Bush is responsible for loading people up with explosive and having them walking into restaurants and then blowing themselves up?

    Or that Americans are no better than the Sunnis that ran Abu Graib?
    well except for the US arrested thoses that did anything of that nature, and even what they did was not close to standard practive when the sadam ran the place.
  • by mosb1000 (710161) <mosb1000@mac.com> on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:54AM (#13998107)
    "Oh, and a last thing: you mix up african and north-african (arabic) culture."

    This is a somewhat subjective issure. The fact of the matter is that the people in question are africans (or north Africans, if you prefer), and the parent was only trying to say that they are treated as second citizens in France. From what I understand this is the case. You'll find a similar attitude in Europe against Turks. I'll never understand why so many people have a problem with poor immigrants moving into their country, but it is an attitude you will find anywhere in the world, and it is usually based on some sort of racial prejudice against the people in question. People say that they're afraid of loosing jobs, but if they really wanted the kind of jobs the immigrants work, they wouldn't be in danger of loosing them. The truth is that people just don't like to see poor immigrants around.

    "Those buildings are owned by the gouvernment, but they are rented for a very cheap price to families who would not be able to afford to rent a place otherwise."

    One may suspect that with less government involvement in the matter, there might be more options for the immigrants. In the US, politicians like to use the justification that these people "would not be able to afford to rent a place otherwise" in order to build low quality projects where they can put all of the poor people so they won't have to see them. Their quality of life isn't really improved, and the problem is self perpetuating since if fosters a sense of helplessness and dependence on the part of people living there. This way people don't have to look at poor people, and they can tell themselves that the poor are looked after. That makes everything seem nice and pretty, until something like this happens.

    The problem is that people see this kind of thing on the news, and they think (rightly) that the people rioting are selfish, lazy and violent. What's worse, the only people calling for action are usually saying that more government intervention is necessary, when that is what caused the problem in the first place.
  • by Viol8 (599362) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @10:55AM (#13998117)
    "Yes, the real cause of unemployment is in the mirror, the color of what it reflects."

    Yes , obviously its their colour. Though all those indians doing well in
    france obviously must have painted themselves white and used false names
    when they went for job interviews, right? Or perhaps you're just dishing out
    the usual racism rant because you're as dumb as the rioters and think all
    their problems are caused by Nasty White People. Moron.
  • by meringuoid (568297) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @11:11AM (#13998253)
    Turkey's prime minister seems to think the riots all have to do with France violating musilms' human rights. This is probably a political game on Turkey's side

    It sure is. Turkey is very keen to join the EU as soon as it possibly can. The existing membership is split on the issue, but France is probably the strongest opponent. It's in Turkey's interest to portray the French government as anti-Muslim, because then the other nations in the EU will come to perceive France's opposition to Turkish membership of the EU as a product of an anti-Muslim mindset, and will be less likely to support France in that matter.

    What the French are actually against, of course, is the accession to the EU of a country with a population bigger than theirs. The Turks would quite naturally have more seats in the European Parliament than either the French or the Germans, and would tend to vote for policies benefiting the poorer countries of the East who have recently joined. In order to defeat such policies, the French and Germans might actually have to come to agreements with the British... Clearly this is inconceivable if you happen to be French :-)

  • Ok, one thing. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by JudgeFurious (455868) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @11:11AM (#13998258)
    Our INS people randomly stop people all of the time to see if they have green cards. There is no outrage because it rarely happens in places where people are "outraged" by this happening. How do I know this? Texas peace officer for 5 years. I worked with INS on a fairly regular basis. Police officers ask civilians for their ID at almost every encounter without starting massive riots.

      The ban on religous headwear was not and is not a case of the muslims being "singled out" or discriminated against. In France you "are" French before you're anything else and it's not like crosses or stars of david get an arms wide open welcome in schools while muslim head coverings are banned. If you immigrate to a country (any country) the onus is on you to comply with the laws of that county. You are also going to find that your success or failure in that county is directly affected by the level to which you integrate into that culture. That's just unavoidable no matter who's country you're talking about and what culture you're coming from.

      Now everyone who disagrees with me (and who has mod points) go ahead and mod me down.
  • by bloosqr (33593) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @11:19AM (#13998335) Homepage
    Did you even read the wiki article you linked to? They *reversed* the lower court conviction in an unanimous vote. Let me quote it for you :

    The U.S. Supreme Court reversed Brandenburg's conviction, holding that government cannot constitutionally punish abstract advocacy of force or law violation. The unanimous majority opinion was per curiam ("signed" by the court as a whole rather than by individual justices): it was orginally drafted by Justice Abe Fortas before he had been forced to resign in the midst of an ethics scandal, and Justice William J. Brennan made only minor changes to the opinion before it was published. Justices Black and Douglas concurred separately.

    For all the flack that the American's get, our view of freedom of religion and celebration of diversity rather than the forced secular humanism and assimilation of the french is much more palatable. What is going on in france is absolutely shameful.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 10, 2005 @11:30AM (#13998429)
    No. Actually he's quite right. America has a higher percentage of ethnically diverse citizens than ALL of Europe combined. At least down here in the South, most parts are 40-70% NON white and we all get along quite well. We are the Southern Bible Belt, and it's that shared Christian faith amongst all of us which binds us together.

    Imagine that. Christianity suceeds at tolerant multi-culturalism when European secular Humanism fails. Your faith in humanity alone to save itself from itself will be your undoing unfortunately...
  • by SatanicPuppy (611928) <`Satanicpuppy' `at' `gmail.com'> on Thursday November 10, 2005 @11:34AM (#13998472) Journal
    Read it more closely.

    "Freedoms of speech and press do not permit a State to forbid advocacy of the use of force or of law violation except where such advocacy is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action."

    His conviction was overturned because hate speech is still protected, and the assembly was peaceful.
  • Re:my 2 euro cents (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ndansmith (582590) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @11:36AM (#13998488)
    5. What is this bullshit about journalists not talking about the causes of the social problems? All French newspapers, TV and radio news are just talking about that!

    They must have that stange "journalistic integrity" thing in France. We had that for a while in the US, but it didn't sell the adverts.

    The news in America, particularly television news, is looking for sensational content. Since the upper/middle class in America does not want to hear about social injustice in France, Fox News and the rest need to enter the "No Spin Zone" and add a tremendous amount of spin. Consequently in American popular media the riots are not about class, race, or economics, but about Extremist Muslim subversives stirring up unrest in Paris. No doubt some assinine comment is coming from Bill O'Reilly: "They thought that by staying out of Iraq they could avoid the terrorism problem, but bin Laden brought it to their front door anyway."

    So in order to keep Lexus, Pepsi, and the other advertisers happy, many problems are blamed on "Al Qaeda" (whatever that actually is). For instance, there is a big debate about curbing illegal immigration in the Southwest region of the United States. Proponents have cast it as a national security risk, saying that terrorists could enter the country from Mexico. Of course all the 9/11 terrorists were issued visas by the US government, but that is not what they want you to hear. They want you to keep tuning in to Fox news and to keep buying Fords and drinking Coke.

    Capitalism run wild is a major source of decay in American journalistic integrity.

  • by Anita Coney (648748) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @11:36AM (#13998492) Homepage
    I agree that language can be a part of an illegal activity. For example, if two guys plan a crime, and make a step towards the crime, they can be charged with conspiracy to commit the crime. However, if one guy says to another "we SHOULD rob such and such bank" thats is NOT a conspiracy to commit a crime as it is not specific. The use of "should" does not show an intent to actual carry out the plan.

    And furthermore, as I stated, even if the statement is specific enough, there has to be some physical movement to carry out the plan. For example, after saying "Let's go rob the bank." They have to stand up to carry out the plan. Buy some masks. Write out a note. SOMETHING to show an intent to carry it out. Language in and of itself does not justify such a conspiracy.

    In the case of inciting a riot, the cases deal with a person IN FRONT OF A CROWD telling them to carry out an act. That is specific enough to warrant a charge.
  • by Citizen of Earth (569446) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @12:10PM (#13998847)
    I assume you live in the US, as Asian or eastern european immigrants who manage to get there will be the ones who have enough money to pay for their tickets.

    Perhaps you are unfamiliar with the situation in North America, where many poor Mexicans sneak across the US border in a desperate bid to find prosperity and many USians sneak across the Canadian border in a desperate bid to find freedom.
  • by bnenning (58349) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @12:33PM (#13999106)
    How exactly does government spending "crowd out" private spending?

    Um, because when government spends a dollar, it must take that dollar from a taxpayer, preventing him from spending the dollar himself. You can argue that the government will spend the dollar in a more beneficial manner than the taxpayer would have, but that government spending crowds out the private sector is practically a tautology.
  • by pilgrim23 (716938) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @12:55PM (#13999355)
    France is now experiencing a problem that Rome found a perennial woe. In the first few decades of the Christian Era, the various ethnic/social groups that made up the various "ghettos" in Rome would have riots. The legion would march in, knock in a few heads, Execute the ringleaders and for a while the city was calm again. Till the next time. Then in 64 AD, on the Egyptian New Years day, a fire broke out near the Circus Maximus that engulfed the whole town. Rome (Gaius Nero) blamed the Jews, and especially a particular group (Christians) in the Jewish ghetto that had been periodically fighting with the majority there. The bloodbath that followed served the two fold purpose of removing one group as a problem, and by inviting all other groups to the Coliseum to watch them slaughtered, it decreased the blood lust on the streets. Sadly, little in human nature has changed since those days.
                                    Bart Prine
  • Re:my 2 euro cents (Score:2, Interesting)

    by lovebyte (81275) <lovebyte2000NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Thursday November 10, 2005 @01:06PM (#13999504) Homepage
    No cause there are hardly any white christians in France anymore.
    True. Most French are atheists.

    Would you care to explain why these rioters are running around yellow "Allah Ackbar"?
    These idiots have seen Palestinian boys do it, so they do it. That's all. They identify themselves with the Palestine events, although they don't understand anything about them. It's like script kiddies thinking they are Linus.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 10, 2005 @01:37PM (#13999889)
    I am living in the UK too. I have been here 3 years and noticed in my time that the Indian, Pakistani, Turkish(Kurdish), Iranian, Chinese etc immigrants work or create work through corner shops or kebab shops. A Kurdish man I know is know worth millions and owns many stores doing distrudution, his parents moved here when he was 5.

    Why can those people better their own situations, yet Africans for the most part can not. Yes, this is a racist statement, but it is the truth. What I am saying is factual. Look at any black community in the UK and there is going to be higher crime and unemployment in that community that any other.

    Africans account for 2% of the UK population but account for 15% in prison. Fact
    Asians account for 3% of the UK population yet are not even near 5% prison population. Fact.

    Explain that all to me then, they have come over to this land both suffering hardships, the one lot better themselves, the other wants handouts, this is fact the world over.
  • Re:my 2 euro cents (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 10, 2005 @02:00PM (#14000145)
    Agreed on both point.

    The ratio of really practicing muslims ans christian is quite the same. And quite low. Quite funnily, most of these "allah ackbar" yelling people drink alcohol, and some more than me.

    for the rest : FUD. They so much doesn't care about Islam that they don't hesitate to play on its degraded-terrorism associated image. And degrade it more.
  • by brpr (826904) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @03:07PM (#14001010)

    So, in your own words, these people have no choice. They are told where to live. Those who have a choice, live elsewhere.

    Really? If the government provides low-cost housing, it is "forcing" people to live there? What rubbish. In your original post you said "they live where they are told", which is clearly not true, and is what the grandparent was responding to. But it seems you have no respect for the facts.

  • by dptalia (804960) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @03:19PM (#14001157) Homepage Journal
    A lot are native born French from imigran parent/grandparents. They were brought in originally for the low end jobs that the citizens thought themselves above (sounds like the Mexican/central american invasion here in the U.S.). They stayed and had kids that became more and more alienated from the culture. And lets admit it - there are certain elements who delibrately encouraged that alienation for their own purposes.
  • Re:learning language (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Hast (24833) on Thursday November 10, 2005 @08:10PM (#14003935)
    If you don't want to learn the language of a country then don't move there! Hello, McFly!

    The discussion is regarding people who flee their home and go to a different country out of necessity. In some cases it is to flee powerty (as in Mexico) but mostly it is people that flee because they risk being imprisoned or killed in their native country.

    It is not so much what they are running towards as what they are running from.

    Here in Canada there are actually many inexpensive (and free) classes on learning Engligh (and French I believe).

    Of course you can learn Swedish for free as an immigrant here too. However since many immigrants end up in the same geographical place they don't "need" to learn Swedish as they can get around just fine talking in their native language. The downside is of course that this makes it harder for them to communicate outside their own community which further closes them off.

    Personally I think that where the Swedish integration politics really fail is ensuring that people are integrated into the country. Not only wrt learning the language but also that many immigrants are not given the jobs they are trained for, which further alienates them and ultimately wastes their talents.

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