Miscellaneous Links 21/01/11

Chinese lift Rolls Royce Car Sales [Nick Smith- “they’re a developing nation”]

Sales of Rolls-Royce cars reached record levels last year as demand in Asia soared and cash-rich buyers splashed out on bespoke models as the global economy recovered. China has now overtaken the UK to be Rolls’ second- biggest market after the US, while Asia-Pacific is the biggest region thanks to strong growth in the UAE, India, Korea and Japan. In 2010, 2,711 cars were sold in total, the highest level since new Rolls cars re-emerged under BMW ownership in 2003. The total is 171pc up on 2009 sales and more than double 2008’s previous record of 1,212. Link to full story.

Christians are becoming social pariahs in Britain, claims Jeremy Vine [Whatever happened to the “vibrancy” of multi-culturalism?]

Jeremy Vine, the BBC presenter, has claimed that it is becoming “socially unacceptable” to be a Christian in Britain. The Radio 2 host said that he feels unable to talk about his faith on his show because he fears how people would react. He argues that society has become increasingly intolerant of the freedom to express religious views. “You can’t express views that were common currency 30 or 40 years ago,” he said. “Arguably, the parameters of what you might call ‘right thinking’ are probably closing. Sadly, along with that has come the fact that it’s almost socially unacceptable to say you believe in God.” His comments follow the claim from Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, the head of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, that Britain is an “unfriendly” place for religious people to live. Link to full story.

Baroness Warsi says Muslim prejudice seen as normal [Can’t we just treat them like Christians?]

Prejudice against Muslims has “passed the dinner-table test” and become socially acceptable in the UK, a senior Conservative is to say. Baroness Warsi, co-chairman of the Tory Party, will warn against dividing Muslims into moderates and extremists. The baroness, the first Muslim woman to serve in the cabinet, will say such labels fuel misunderstanding. She will use a speech at Leicester University to accuse the media of superficial discussion of Islam. Baroness Warsi will say anti-Muslim prejudice is now seen by many Britons as normal and uncontroversial, and she will use her position to fight an “ongoing battle against bigotry”. The BBC’s religious affairs correspondent Robert Pigott said Baroness Warsi is to say publicly what many Muslims privately complain about – that prejudice against them does not attract the social stigma attached to prejudice against other religious and ethnic groups. Link to full story.

Poll: Americans Split on What to Cut from Government [The eat cake and keep it too club]

New CBS News poll finds that Americans strongly prefer cutting spending to raising taxes to reduce the federal deficit. While 77 percent prefer to cut spending, just nine percent call for raising taxes. Another nine percent want to do both. Yet most Americans could not volunteer a program they’d be willing to see cut in order to reduce the deficit – only 38 percent could name a program they would support cutting. The top responses were military/defense (six percent), Social Security/Medicare (four percent) and welfare/food stamps (four percent). Link to full story.

A new low for Rush Limbaugh? [whining liberal alert]

For the most part, I think Rush Limbaugh is better ignored. He’s a shameless liar who has helped turn incivility into the national past-time, a demagogue who has done more than his share to divide the body politic. And made hundreds of millions of dollars doing it. But his utterly classless mocking today of a visiting dignitary — Chinese President Hu Jintao — ought to embarrass many of Limbaugh’s ardent fans. While Limbaugh frequently engages in race-baiting, his performance today was a low ebb even for him. Link to full story. [Check the video, its funny]