The Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice is better known as the Muttaween – the religious police.
Their manual is the source of the Bendigo Bank’s programs – no one must breathe a word about Islam unless it is extolling and praising it.
The Muttaween are big on discrimination.
So is the Bendigo Bank, that is why they discriminated against a customer who had views on things different to theirs .
But whereas the Muttaween can do as they please in Saudi Arabia, Bendigo Bank has a problem…
Discrimination is basically against the law in Australia.
And refusing a service because a customer is making a perfectly legal objection to the building of a mosque sounds very much like the sort of thing the Victorian Financial Ombudsman Service would like to get its hands on.
You see, the Bendigo Bank, like all banks, has a contract with its customers and that contract spells out in eye-rolling detail what the bank will do and won’t do in various events; mostly dealing with fraud or death or insufficient funds.
And there is nothing in the various contracts that the customers have to be supporters of multi-culturalism, or be strong supporters of diversity.
And in a particular case, much milder than this, the Ombudsman told a bank had to hand over $9000 for suspending an account, because the customer had not been advised beforehand that the bank could do such a thing in the particular circumstances of the case.
Bendigo might be safer if they had a clause in the contract like, “The Bendigo Bank reserves the right to behead any customer who insults Islam, and the right to cut the hand of anyone stealing from the Bendigo Bank”. Legally, that might just get through as the customer was aware of it before he opened his account.
Of course, imposing virtuous behaviour on people is a world wide trend and Bendigo Bank is nothing if not trendy.
Say you’re in the British Library, say you want to read an article on whether Turco-Iranian friendship is real in the “Middle East Quarterly”. You type in MEForum.org and get the following result:
So, you have had your wrist slapped a la Bendigo bank for intolerance and it is a wasted morning but wait; say you decide to look up anti-semitic sites.
No problem, plenty of sites available at the British Library. The British Library only censors sites that are critical of Islam, but anti-semitic sites? Well….
Exposing the Holocaust Hoax Archive, Jew Knowledge (All about Jewish control of Hollywood, Jewish connections to 9/11,…), Muslim Public Affairs Committee, UK (antisemitic jihad).
Not strong enough? How about sites that promote hatred of Jews? Or are pro-terrorist? Try:-
Al Muntada; Anjem Choudary; FiSyria; Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.
There are even sites promoting the writings of Osama Bin Laden.
Multiculturalism is a one way street? Well, one might say, the Brits are loonies anyway. Forget them. But why is a home-grown Australian bank knocking off the account of home grown Australians just because they are opposed to mosque building?
It is because Bendigo Bank no longer thinks of itself as a bank but instead regards itself as an apostle of social change, as a zealot for the promotion of virtue, as a divine flail for those given to vice?
As the Muttaween Bank of Australia?Since this article was published the British Library have unblocked the Middle East Forum website, claiming that it was an error. Apparently it was a contagious “error” as it affected websites other than the Middle East Forum. Bendigo Bank however have repeated that they will close the site opposing the mosque.