Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Obama out of his league

When it comes to the G20, Barack Obama is a mere checker player amongst chess champions. Beginning at 1:30 listen to this stunning podcast.

Superb Interview with Daniel Hannan

You might recall this video:


Here's an interesting interview with Hannan, beginning at 34:00. And there's a continued discussion about Hannan here, beginning at 7:00.

Futuristic Power Plant

Unbeknownst to most people driving along West 12th Avenue, there's a huge power plant buried underground across from the Centennial Pavilion. It's extremely futuristic and makes a great photographic subject on sunny days!





Charles Krauthammer's Take on Obama’s Plan for the Auto Industry

Obama owns GM, and I don't know about you, Bret, but I'm deeply reassured that the largest company in America is owned by a guy with the vast private sector experience of Barack Obama.

His speech today, as always, was eloquent, and it appeared clear, but it really is not. It's not exactly clear what he is aiming at.

As I understand it, I think, though, the plan here is to send GM into Chapter 11, either a real Chapter 11 or a disguised one in 60 days, and to send Chrysler over to Fiat or the wolves, whichever will take it.

With GM, the reason that I suspect it is going to end up in Chapter 11 is because he would not have offered the guarantee on warranties otherwise. The reason people are worried about a Chapter 11 is, that the argument is if that happens, people will not have confidence in the company, and the sales will dissolve.

But you have got to ask yourself as a constitutional aside where in Articles II of the constitution is the president allowed to unilaterally guarantee auto warranties? I mean, tomorrow it will end up — we started with bank deposits, money markets, auto warranties, and tomorrow it's toasters.

But if you have Democrats in power, nobody asks about the constitutional questions.

Debate on Free Speech in the UK

To see just how far British citizens have strolled down the path of political correctness, listen carefully to what the female panelist, Baroness Williams, says and the loud applause she receives. Sheeple ALL!

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Reality of the Left: Equality or Inequality?

Dennis Prager had a fascinating discussion on his program today, which you can listen to beginning at 40:20 here.

I was curious what others thought about this so I posted the following on SDA:

American radio show host Dennis Prager spoke of something today that I wanted to throw at all of you for feedback. Paraphrasing, this is what he said:

"The Left has never been spoken about Creating Wealth, the Left is only focused on Creating Equality."

I thought about this some and the only exception I could think of is the NDP gov't in Manitoba. I haven't lived there in some time so perhaps it's the case that their policies are not Left-centered in practice?

Anyhow, in the bigger picture, what do you think of Prager's statement?



To my great delight I received this response from "ET", an female professor in Ontario:

The Left is about creating inequality. Not equality.

The Left asserts that the knowledge of 'How to live in the Best Way' exists; it is accessible to an Elite, a Chosen Set. These people have The Knowledge of The Best Way To Live. This knowledge is not found in the majority of people. Only these Few have it - They are defined as Guardians or Rulers.

The fascinating thing is that this perspective is not modern. It is not industrial. It is pre-industrial. The perspective of the Left is very much the mindset of 18th and 19th c Europe.

The class structure of pre-modern Europe consisted of an elite Landed Gentry...the people whose wealth (knowledge) wasn't made by themselves but was inherited from ancestors. Then, there was the up-and-coming mercantile merchant class - the businessmen. These people were sneered at and derided by the Landed Gentry, who scorned anyone having to 'make money' with their own work.
And..the rest were peasants, farmers, workers.

This pre-modern class elitism is exactly what is found in our modern Left. Our modern left are similar to the Landed Gentry. Their 'wealth' or knowledge isn't self-made; they are found in the universities, in the civil service...They certainly aren't in 'business'..which is condemned.

Notice how Obama condems the business and manufacturing peoples as based on 'greed'. That's such an 19th c statement..made by an elitist!

The Landed Gentry of the 18th c, who are now the modern Leftists, sneer at anyone who 'makes wealth' or 'makes knowledge'. They deride the investors, or the businessman, or industrialists, or the bankers. These people, who make the wealth - they are 'corrupt'. They merely make wealth; they are greedy.

The worker class are the people who work for wages.

The Left, the modern Landed Gentry, the modern Guardians, do NOT consider the merchant and business class as their equal! After all, merchants and businessmen are 'nouveau riche', and are 'wealthy' out of greed..not out of ancestry and 'noblesse oblige'.
And they consider the workers..ignorant and hapless..beer and popcorn victims of the wealthy businessmen.

The agenda of the Landed Gentry, the Left, is not to enable equality, for they reject equality. It is to reduce the power of the people who make wealth - the industrialists, the businessmen. And, in this era of voting power, they'll give this wealth..first, to themselves (they'll always have high salaries and benefits and perks in office..Recall Pelosi's perks and plane rides)...and second..to the peasants..to keep them passive and meek.

Posted by: ET at March 30, 2009 11:02 PM

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Rejoice, a Sunny Day in Vancouver!






Floating Glass Balls



Dear President Obama, Please Don't Do This

An ordinary American, speaking from his heart:

Here's one very telling comment:

Obama is implementing "change." Don't you get it? The reason George Bush got us into so much debt is because he didn't spend enough. Thus Obama is making the needed changes and will spend seven times more to end this problem. That makes sense right?

So what is Obama's change? It's your change, my change, our children and grand children's change and beyond. It's total madness.

Rick Wagoner Forced to Resign

Finally, some positive news! The inept CEO of GM, Rick Wagoner, is resigning. He should have done it on his own long ago. I'm not particularly thrilled that the government demanded he do so but considering all the public investment in that company, perhaps they had a good right to do so.

One has to now wonder if The Community Organizer (aka Barack Obama) is going to appoint an incompetent Democrat lackey to fill the role. That might be even worse!



Kate McMillan, over at SDA, has a somewhat different view. Here's what I wrote her:

I hear what you're saying, Kate, but my own views still lean closer to Gord's. It seems clear that Rick Wagoner was an absolute disaster as CEO of GM. The correct course of action at the start of his tenure would have been to take a firm stance and say to all, "We have become a massive old age health care rest home provider with a small loss-making automobile manufacturing division" (to borrow a line from Mark Steyn).

But instead, he went on & on & on with the status quo. Some have suggested that he, the head of the UAW, and several Michigan and federal politicians have all been in cahoots for some time.

I wish he had resigned on his own a long time ago. He has not. I desperately fear that Obama will now engineer a Democrat lackey to take over but who knows.

So I agree with you about the severe oddness of an American president interfering with a private enterprise CEO but then we'd probably both agree that no bailout with public funds should have occurred in the first place!

Political Lense

Well, Carla Bruni is France's First Lady and therefore this is a posting about politics, right?! ;-)

What I'm Reading

Lorrie Goldstein lambastes all of the hypocrites who participated in Earth Hour last night.

As for the rest of you, congratulations. Because if a billion people around the world joined you in turning off their lights for an hour last night, while telepathically singing Kumbaya together and giving the Earth a great, big, warm (oh !@?!@$#, I mean a "cool") hug, you just saved the equivalent amount of greenhouse gas emissions from going into the atmosphere that China emits every ... six seconds.


Mark Steyn outlines how Barack the Benevolent is going to change the fractured world into one harmonious world - his.

The 44th president is proposing to add more to the national debt than the first 43 presidents combined, doubling it in the next six years, and tripling it within the decade. But to talk about it in percentages of this and trillions of that misses the point. It's not about bookkeeping, it's about government annexation of the economy, and thus of life: government supervision, government regulation, government control. No matter how small your small business is – plumbing, hairdressing, maple-sugaring – the state will be burdening you with more permits, more paperwork, more bureaucracy.


The National Post has a comprehensive & interesting article on Canada's Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister, Jason Kenney. As someone who directly interfaces with various immigrant communities on a regular basis, I applaud his efforts in the loudest possible way!

I LOVE the fact that we have so many new immigrants from all over the world but I absolutely believe that they have a duty to learn English (or French). In fact, I think it should become a requirement to attain citizenship. Also, I believe that the self-imposed ghettos that have been created in various cities is unhealthy to the extreme.

My message to immigrants is simple: Welcome to Canada, but become a true Canadian, not a hyphenated one!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Mark Levin on Hannity's TV Show

Mark Levin is an American talkshow host, author, and lawyer. He's rather abrasive to some but no reasonable person can deny that he is a brilliant intellectual. He has just published a new book entitled Liberty and Tyranny, which is the #1 most popular book on Amazon right now.

You can listen to his free podcasts here.

Here he is on Sean Hannity's popular TV show:


Dennis Prager's Happiness Hour

I found this podcast to be extremely interesting. Dennis Prager focuses on the images that people have of what their life should be like and if reality doesn't live up to those images then unhappiness often results.

The audio starts at 1:30. When you reach a commercial, you can skip ahead about 5 minutes each time.

The Globe & Mail's Propaganda - Example #87,543

The Globe & Mail newspaper published an "interesting" poll on their website today. Read over the question carefully. How would you vote?

If you're like SDA regular "ET", you wouldn't vote at all. Here's what she had to say about it:

How about this poll question, in the Globe and Mail today? It's an example of 'begging the question', a fallacy, where you FIRST have to accept an internal-to-the-question opinion, before you can answer the question.

Here's the question:

"Will President Obama convince Americans to make the hard choices necessary to change the Bush administration's often-failed foreign policies?"

Heh. There are actually multiple fallacies in this esteemed, impartial, unbiased, truth-seeking newspaper's question.

First, there's the basic begging, where you have to accept as truth 'the Bush administration's often-failed foreign policies'. Notice that the question didn't FIRST ask you if you thought these policies were failures. No way. Truth is, according to the G&M, theirs and theirs alone.

Then, how about 'alleged certainty', where it is accepted as beyond question that Obama's actions will be 'necessary'? Oh? This assumes that any of his foreign policy actions will not be subject to criticism because they are already correct and are thus deemed 'necessary'.

Notice also yet another unquestioned assumption; the descriptive evaluation of Obama, i.e. that Obama KNOWS what is necessary and correct.

All of these fallacies, all in one G&M question.

By the way, not a mention of Obama's naive hug-a-terrorist actions, in his letter to Iran, suggesting that all is needed is to 'get along'.

How about his administration's change of definition of a terrorist action to a 'man-caused disaster', which removes all intentionality of that uh, terrorist, to uh, terrorize and reduces the action to pure accident.

How about his insults to the UK PM, to Sarkozy of France, to the Italian PM?

His Afghanistan agenda? Straight out of Bush's agenda in Iraq, which saw, after the surge had gained control of the country, the new agenda of empowering the local population to themselves fight back against Al Qaeda. The G&M seems to have forgotten this Bush strategy of creating a democracy and then empowering the people.

Posted by: ET at March 28, 2009 12:14 PM

The New Linksys Routers

I've long been a fan of the Linksys brand of routers. Their distinctive blue colour could be seen in many homes. I'd become so adept at setting them up for a variety of friends that I had recorded their password info (with permission) so that I could remind my friends of their long forgotten passwords and also troubleshoot problems for them over the phone! This variety of Linksys routers hovered in the $50 price range.

But now that Cisco has purchased Linksys they've come out with a new design:
It's not clear to me that there is any core functionality that has dramatically improved, yet the price has more than doubled overnight. The capitalist in me realizes that Cisco isn't forcing anyone to buy their products but the utilitarian in me was very content with the old models!

Friday, March 27, 2009

John Howard Interview

Australia's terrific past PM, John Howard, is interviewed by Leah Costello of the Fraser Institute:


Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Obama Song

Dennis Miller on the O'Reilly Factor

The Perils of Endless Spending

British MP, Daniel Hannan, gives a much needed tongue lashing to UK PM Gordon Brown:

One thing is perfectly clear: the bankruptcy of Great Britain is due to a lack of fiscal responsibility.

Here's Hannan interviewed by Glenn Beck:

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

"Human Rights" Commissions in Canada

Ezra Levant recently appeared on Michael Coren's TV program, discussing the horrendous behaviour of the 14 so-called "Human Rights" Commissions across Canada. He cites several real-life examples that will leave you incredulous:


Click on the image below to learn more about Levant's new book:





Update: Rex Murphy has a lengthy but superb review of Shakedown. Here's a snippet:

Now, some people do not like Levant's style. They say he is too aggressive, too noisy and assertive, that he courts controversy and publicity. They should read Shakedown, and they will quickly realize that anyone less "aggressive" or "noisy" would have long ago been suffocated by the remorseless, inequitable, taxpayer-funded, bureaucratic grinding of Canada's human rights tribunals and commissions.

On the matter of his alleged taste for controversy and publicity, again, after reading Shakedown, they will realize that without his ability to withstand controversy and generate publicity, an insidious and largely unaccountable process of diminishing the central concepts of our democracy — freedom of speech, press and thought — would largely have gone unnoticed, and what is far worse, unchallenged.

New Videos from Hawaii

No spectacular action here, just some nice scenes from a beautiful part of the world, set to some cool music.

Access HQ Version

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A Little Insight About Criminals

Dennis Prager said something today that I thought was rather profound:

"The commonalities I've seen amongst people involved in evil is that they always possess a combination of self-pity and arrogance."

If you know anyone who is involved in crime then I believe you'll find this to be very true.

Incidentally, he was discussing this this recent tragedy.

Anti-Semite in the BC NDP?

Anyone following politics in Canada for some time knows that BC has had perhaps the strangest politics of all for many decades. That has pretty much subsided but the bizarre meter may get a new life now that we're entering a new provincial election campaign.

Over the weekend the NDP held a nominating meeting in the riding of Vancouver-Kensington. The despicable Jinny "I make my own laws" Sims of the BCTF was defeated by a woman named Mable Elmore. I had never heard of Ms. Elmore before but now it's coming to light that she once said, "convincing union members to oppose the conflict in Iraq was difficult because of vocal Zionists in our worksites." You can read more here.

Not a surprise that a Radical Leftist (or you can use the term "Peace Activist" which she prefers) doesn't like Jews - it's pretty much par for the course here in Canada - but to be so vocal about it requires a special kind of arrogance.

Isn't it interesting, and more than a little telling, that of all the possible candidates for Vancouver-Kensington, the NDP insisted on choosing between a known lawbreaker and another who has a problem with Jews (though let's just call them "Zionists" to appease the socialist narrative). What a pathetic disgrace.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Jinny Sims = Failed Politician

British Columbians now have proof positive that there is a God: Jinny Sims, the thug who used to head the BC Teacher's Federation and counseled teachers to break the law, was soundly defeated in a recent NDP nomination bid.

Alternative Health Care Approaches

On one of my favourite blogs, this discussion is raging about health care. Since Canada was cited so much, I decided to chime in with my 2 cents:

Like with all things, one's views on health care depends a lot on one's political views.

I, for one, have TONS of evidence of ENORMOUS problems with the Canadian health care system. Its very nature breeds inefficiency. Yet once one gets past the [often] long waits then the actual care by the nurses & doctors et al is supposed to be superb.

SOME PERSONAL STORIES ...

I pay $52 per month for health care here in British Columbia. If I didn't make sufficient income then this fee would be waived. I'm in good health so haven't had to use the medical system for years. But if I did get sick then I'd have to try to find a personal GP, which is exceedingly difficult these days. Another option would be to walk into a local clinic which operates with a pool of doctors in rotation. My third option would be to walk into the Emergency of any local hospital. In the latter two cases you're guaranteed a multi-hour wait (note: 4 - 10 hrs isn't unheard of) almost all the time. Even with a personal GP you usually still have to wait.

My mom's in the hospital right now. Thankfully there was a bed available for her. If there wasn't then she'd be on a waiting list for who knows how long.

A good friend of mine, John, had some major heart problems for years. When it got so severe he went to his GP simply to get an appointment for a heart specialist. Then he waited and waited and waited. His wife morbidly joked that only time would tell whether she would sit in on an appointment with the specialist or with a funeral director. Eventually John did get into the specialist after 8 months. By that point things were so serious that he was immediately scheduled for surgery. And all that wait was simply to get a pacemaker installed. He's now doing better.

The father of a close friend of mine has been suffering with different types of cancer for a few years. While waiting for surgery for his stomach cancer, he started getting blurry vision. Only at the insistence of his daughter screaming at the medical officials to give him an MRI was one done. It turned out he had a brain tumor. Thankfully space was available within a week to have an operation to remove it. All went well. But if there had been many others in line then he would have had to wait & wait & wait.


SOME INTERESTING FACTS ...

Because of the crazy rules preventing one from paying for private medical care here in Canada, it's actually easier to take one's dog in for an MRI than to get one for a human.

The powers at be refuse to share the costs of one's medical treatment with the patients. I've advocated for years that a bill should be presented to each patient, albeit with the costs waived. But the hospitals have no real cost controls per say so they don't actually know what it costs to treat each patient. Let's be clear: if costs are not closely monitored then inefficiencies and corruption are certain to result.

I have heard before, but don't have this confirmed, that there are more MRIs in the City of Philadelphia than in the entire country of Canada.


SUMMARY

Things are slowly changing for the positive here in Canada with more of a mixture of private and public health care. The fact is that competition improves things, no matter how much the public sector health care unions are in denial of this fact. In my province currently between 40 - 50% of all taxes go towards health care. This number keeps on increasing. The fear is that one day it will consume 70% or even 80% of the budget.

I have no specific advice for my American friends but the notion that health care is peachy keen here in Canada is a myth that only the likes of Michael Moore and other Obamunists will buy into.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Future Headline: All Media & Hollywood Wages to be Capped

I shuddered when I read this article about Obama's possible plans to cap the wages of many more private companies, even those which have received no government bailouts. The reaction to this in many quarters still seems muted at best and even supportive at worst. So I thought it appropriate to offer this prospective future news story, which is [currently] just a work of fiction:

WASHINGTON: Today the Obama administration announced a new bill which will cap the wages of all members of the media, as well as everyone working in the television, movie, and music industries.

"Every person working in any of these areas will have their remuneration capped to a maximum of $10,000 per month or $100K per year, whichever is less", said Obama spokesman, Robert Gibbs. "This includes but is not limited to writers, news anchors, actors, directors, and producers. Any wages or other kinds of payments exceeding these amounts will be met with a 105% income tax. We have great confidence that our longtime allies in these businesses will support this initiative for the good of their fellow citizens and the good of the USSA."

When asked whether these amounts will ever go up, Gibbs said, "there is a clause in the bill that the amounts will be reviewed only once the entire U.S. debt has been done away with. Until then, no, they will not change."

Katie Couric, Matt Damon, and Barbra Streisand were all contacted for this story but refused comment.

Later in the day President Obama was quoted as saying, "Because of the financial crisis at hand, this bill must be voted on and signed within 48 hours. Failure to do so may result in dire permanent consequences for our nation."

CBC Consistently Replacing Truth with Opinion

Dennis Prager has an interesting expression: "First tell the truth, then share your opinion."

I firmly believe that failure to adhere to this simple premise is the root cause of many of our problems today.

Case in point: This morning I listened for awhile to the CBC's Sunday Edition radio program, featuring Obama's Canadian shill, Michael Enright. A greater embarrassment to the once proud profession of journalism there has never been. He interviewed at length a professor from the University of Syracuse. This fellow had some interesting things to say but so much of it could have been pulled from the chorus sheets of the Radical Left Daily Kos hatesite.

Among other things, he stated that the average American's real income is much less than it was 30 years ago. Is that true? I don't intuitively believe it. But the CBC, being the CBC, there was no alternate viewpoint to challenge anything this fellow said.

So if you're a regular CBC listener/viewer and rarely/never partake in any alternative viewpoints then much of the foundation of your worldview is built upon very skewed opinions, not truth. In times past the betrayal of truth with opinion was called "effective propaganda". It often precluded the occurrence of very bad things.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives

Since I don't own a TV (very much by choice!) I'm not aware of the existence of most non-network shows. Today I caught a few episodes of Guy Fieri's show and my mouth was salivating throughout. I think I'm going to plan a trip across America based simply on the places he features!

Continued Attacks on Canadian Christians

I like CKNW's Sean Leslie. He seems like a really good guy and I enjoy his program every weekend. Today though he had this rant against our federal Minister of Science, Gary Goodyear (at 11:25).



Afterwards, he invited feedback on his thoughts. Here's what I wrote him, which to his credit, he read on-air:

Dear Sean,

Regarding your rant about Gary Goodyear, I couldn't agree with you less. For the record, I have not been a practicing Christian all of my adult life but I'm appalled by the chorus of Christian-bashing that is constantly heard by so many in the media these days.

Based on your own words in shows past, I'm guessing you would describe yourself as a secular small-L liberal. That's fine. In the same way that you are entitled to your own worldviews, so shouldn't others be entitled to theirs?

Ask yourself two questions:
  1. Would you ever dare to utter such a public rant against a government Minister who was a Fundamentalist Muslim or a Fundamentalist Sikh? You & I both know you would not for if you did, you would immediately be called a racist bigot and likely be out of a job within 48 hours. But because it's the "IN" thing to bash Christians, you feel free to chime away.

  2. Is it possible for a devout Christian to be a member of the Canadian media today and not deliberately silence themselves about their own personal views? I believe not. That should speak volumes to you about the atmosphere that your colleagues have created for journalists in Canada in 2009. Hint: Scary for some.
Robert Werner
Vancouver, BC

Mark Steyn: AIG Execs the New 'Enemy Combatants'

The first two months of the Age of the Hopeychange have been an eye-opener. I expected it to be ideologically distasteful to me, but I didn't expect it to be so inept. Not because I had any expectations of President Obama's executive skills. But I assumed he'd have folks around him who could take care of details like governing, while he pranced around as the smiley-face hopeychange frontman. But the bench is still empty save for a handful of mediocrities. And the disconnect between the smoothly scripted mush and what's actually happening makes the telepromptered cool look even more ridiculous.

Full article

A Not So Serious Presidency

Rex Murphy shares his thoughts on the very strange "celebrity" presidency that has become Barack Obama's time in office. Here are a few snippets:

And where is Barack Obama in all this. Well, Mr. Obama is acting curiously. He doesn't so much preside over the crisis as act like America's chosen master of ceremonies, who appears on stage to introduce its component segments. Good patter, well-chosen appearances. There's no centre to his performance.

Mr. Obama drops in to everyday events more than he actually manages them. He's very cool, as always, but he lacks affect. He doesn't seem to connect with the great swirl of events around him. He shows up. He doesn't act. He likes to tour, and visit happy places.

Is Barack Obama leading the United States at this time? Or is he just a really cool guy with all the power in the world and not a whole lot of clues about how to use it?

It has long been said that the politicians we elect are a reflection of our collective selves. Obama is thus perfect: A non-serious president for a childish group of adults who are more interested in celebrity and entertainment than serious discussion and history.

Friday, March 20, 2009

French Architecture in South Granville?

I discovered this new building at 14th & Birch in Vancouver's South Granville neighbourhood. It is so unlike any building I've ever seen in these parts and immediately struck me as being plucked right out of Montreal or Quebec City. Definitely an improvement over the rectangular boxes that have existed in Vancouver for much too long!

Ugly Americans

I'm actually a fan of Fox News but have never enjoyed this Red Eye show. I wonder if any of these people bothered to find out that 112 Canadian soldiers have given their lives in Afghanistan? If you ever wondered where the phrase "Ugly American" comes from, this is a prime example.

Entitlement Mentality from the Start

I'm a big believer in immigration. It is an important thing and in the case of Canada, it is absolutely necessary because of our low birthrates.

I belong to an Immigration forum because of the computer charity I created. A woman started a forum thread entitled "Three-month waiting period for healthcare". Here are some of the entries:

When I arrived in Canada, I didn't realize there would be a three-month waiting period before I could be covered under the public health care system. [A friend even joked that I wasn't 'eligible' to fall sick for those many months!!!] Does anyone have any expeierences where you needed medical care in those first three months and weren't covered? Do many newcomers actually get private health insurance?

I came to Canada with 7 months pregnancy and me and my husband had to pay for all the costs of the delivery, including doctors and hospital. Anyway, it was very clear on the information provided by the Government of Canada that we would have the three month waiting period. If it's fair or not, its another discussion. But we have to agree that at least for the skilled workers immigrants it is clear that we have to pay for all the costs related to health care in the first three months after arrival.

Some one told me that you can get your money back after when you are covered. However I am not sure if this is correct. I think the time for the medical cover takes 4 months. First month you have to wait for your bank statement to come thru post which takes 1 month and then 3 months for medical. May be you can show some other document perhaps such as accommodation but I am not sure. Waiting for my bank statement to come really then I will initiate my medical process. In fact I have my phone bill arrived thru posts but the medical centre did not accept this as a valid proof of residence.

Is it just me, or have these people already forgotten about what the word "privilege" means and instead converted them to "rights"? Whatever happened to newcomers wanting to come to Canada to work hard and make a contribution? Now it seems some of these folks already have the entitlement mentality from the get go. This is beyond sad.

Pink Flamingos

Processing videos during my Hawaii trip was simply not an option because of the limited horsepower of my laptop and the slow Internet connection I had. So I'm going to be uploading some over the next several weeks, starting with this one of the most hilarious birds I've ever seen:

Access HQ version

The Digital Lifestyle Addiction

I build software for a living, for Windows computers, web browsers, and for mobile wireless devices too. So I know more about technology than at least 99.99% of the population. Note: I didn't grab that number out of the air but calculated it based on a few reasonable assumptions.

I understand the power of technology and what benefits it can provide mankind. As such, I'm a big advocate of it. But just like there were no speed limits and other such conventions when automobiles were first introduced, so I believe society has not yet established a proper set of rules of behavior for those using digital technology.

Here are a few examples of how the use of this "product" can be pathetic at best and downright annoying at worst:

  1. Talking on a cel phone any time, anywhere, at any volume, and always incessantly.

  2. Constantly text messaging while out in public.

  3. Twittering 24/7.
If you're not familiar with the latter activity, let me give you a quick synopsis: Twitter is a global text messaging engine where everybody can potentially see everybody else's messages. Each individual message can be no more than 140 characters in length. Here's an example of a Twitter user:
  • I just woke up
  • I just got out of the bathroom, doing a #2
  • I just looked outside and saw clouds
  • I just made a cup of coffee
  • I'm walking down the street
  • People in this town are so unfriendly
  • I'm getting on my bus
  • I'm waiting for my plane
And on & on it goes. Such insight and depth there, eh?! The great thinkers of the ages must be quaking in their boots!

Anyhow, the 3 examples presented above are but a few of the myriad of examples of the often stupid behavior of technology junkies.



I've developed a theory to explain it: Isn't the seemingly non-stop, addictive behavior of such folks almost identical to the actions of a chain-smoker and/or alcoholic and/or drug addict?

For some time now society has had strict rules about the consumption of the last two products. More recently, the consumption of tobacco has been greatly restricted from most public and many private areas too.

Perhaps it's now long overdue to restrict the use of technology products in a lot more places than we currently do.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Vancouver Canucks: 11th Straight Win at Home

Vancouverites are getting very excited that their team may be peaking at the right time!

Lawrence Martin: The Vast Right-Wing Media Conspiracy

Not often do I read something that leaves me baffled. But such is the case with the latest mutterings of the Globe & Mail's Lawrence Martin. In what is apparently not satire, he tries to put forward the case that journalism has moved to the RIGHT of the Canadian public. He goes on to make many references to American media outlets that one can only assume he believes the same has occurred in the U.S.

Think about that for a second. Mr. Martin is asserting that journalists in the mainstream media have become more right-wing, more conservative than the average person in the public. Considering that poll after poll after poll of journalists asserts that 98% label themselves as liberal or very liberal, how could he make such an assertion with any sense of credibility? One can only surmise that Martin is working under the old presumption that "if you tell a lie enough times, maybe people will start believing it."

Because of the parrot-like behaviour of so many in the MSM, look for others to recite this now as a fact. It's SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) for how the Left operates.

How anyone could watch last year's U.S. Presidential election campaign or Canada's recent Constitutional Crisis and come away believing that there is a RIGHT-wing bias in the media is surely beyond the comprehension of even the most learned psychiatrists the world over!

It's one thing for people to have different political views but to think as Lawrence Martin does takes a special kind of stupid.

A New Trend For UK Immigrants?

Deva Kumarasiri is an immigrant from Sri Lanka who moved to the UK 17 years ago. He's also proud to be British. So much so that if other immigrants come into his postal outlet who have not bothered to learn English, he tells them to go away and learn it.

I would LOVE to see this guy in Canada be taken in front of one of our dreadful "human rights" kangaroo courts. He would make mincemeat of them!



Update: Thanks to David I've learned that Mr. Kumarasiri has been forced to a new location because of threats from angry Muslims. Britain truly has lost its soul.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hush, Hush, Wink, Wink, He's a Christian! (So he's likely suspect)


The New Bigotry of the Secular Left

1692: Salem Witch Hunt

2009: Ottawa Christian Hunt

Thomas Sowell: Republican Civil War

There has long been an element of the Republican party that has felt a need to distance themselves from people who stand up for conservative principles, whether those with principles have been Ronald Reagan, Rush Limbaugh, or whomever.

Maybe those Republicans who put a high value on being accepted in elite circles should be embarrassed by the narrowness of their elite friends, who disdain or demonize people whose principles they disagree with, instead of answering their arguments.

No segment of the population has lost more by the agendas of the liberal constituencies of the Democratic party than the black population. The teachers’ unions, environmental fanatics, and the ACLU are just some of the groups to whose interests blacks have been sacrificed wholesale. Lousy education and high crime rates in the ghettos, and unaffordable housing elsewhere with building restrictions, are devastating prices to pay for liberalism. Yet the Republicans have never articulated that argument, and their opportunism in trying to get black votes by becoming imitation Democrats has failed miserably for decades on end.

Full editorial

Pat Condell: Free Speech is Sacred

A Letter from the Boss

Received from a friend via e-mail:

As the CEO of this organization, I have resigned myself to the fact that Barrack Obama is our President and that our taxes and government fees will increase in a BIG way. To compensate for these increases, our prices would have to increase by about 10%.

But since we cannot increase our prices right now due to the dismal state of the
economy, we will have to lay off six of our employees instead. This has really been bothering me, since I believe we are family here and I didn't know how to choose who would have to go.

So, this is what I did. I walked through our parking lot and found six 'Obama' bumper stickers on our employees' cars and have decided these folks will be the ones to let go. I can't think of a more fair way to approach this problem. They voted for change, I gave it to them.

I will see the rest of you at the annual company picnic.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Shelby Steele: Why the GOP Can't Win With Minorities

"Conservativism ... it made no special promises to me as a minority. It neglected me in every way except as a human being who wanted freedom."

Shelby Steele, a brilliant American writer (who happens to be black) has just published a provocative article explaining why Republicans can't compete with Democrats with any minority voter who is seeking grievances to be addressed by the government. You can read the full article here.

For many of my fellow Canadians, most of whom have drank copious amounts of the Obama Kool Aid, it's unfathomable how anyone could possibly vote for the Republicans in America or the Conservatives in Canada. Hey, if your core beliefs state that the mission and duty of government is to address every grievance of every citizen then the Democrats in America and the Liberals & NDP in Canada should absolutely be your parties of choice at each & every election. For the core raison d'être of these parties is the Grievance Resolution Business. To ensure they have a never-ending supply of customers (aka voters) they have to convince more & more people that they are victims, in need of endless help from the government.

Just remember though that all grievances (aka "inequities" aka "human rights violations") need to be paid. And so a key to supporting this belief system is an implicit understanding that the cost of everything around you will go up: Income tax, sales tax, property tax -> Retail purchases, services, food, gasoline, transit, travel, rent, everything. For have no illusions, there will never be an end to what new grievances are dreamed up in the minds of those who feel they're oppressed.

All I ask is that if you believe that all such grievances should be addressed by the government then don't ever complain about having to give more of your time (ie. labor) & money to pay for them. There's simply no denying that the two are inextricably linked.



Dennis Prager, a favourite radio show host of mine, also shares his thoughts on this subject.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Ron Silver R.I.P.

Ron Silver, a great actor and outspoken conservative pundit, died yesterday after a 2-year battle with cancer. You can learn more about him and his career here on IMDB.

Update: Ann Coulter shares her very personal thoughts on Ron Silver.

The CBC's Diversity of Opinion

In this brilliant editorial Lorne Gunter explains why there's as much diversity of opinion at Canada's CBC as there is at the Karl Marx Widget Factory #6. In other words, there's not. It's long overdue to end all public subsidies to the CBC and let it become a specialty channel, supported by those who want to listen to it.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Leavin' In The Rain

Last night & this morning it rained cats & dogs. I guess Hawaii is encouraging me to head back home!

Here are 2 Leis I purchased on behalf of my 88 year-old friend from Chicago named Toni. They'll be given to our common friend, Deenu, and his pregnant wife, Ravena. The first is a woman's lei and the second is for a man.


video



Update: If you'd like to see several more videos from Hawaii then click here.

Friday, March 13, 2009

My Last Full Day in Hawaii

The weather wasn't perfect today and my health wasn't either but I got out & about and took some photos throughout the day.

This large and interesting statue sits at the Hawaii Convention Center.

I got down to Waikiki Beach with my camera & tripod to capture my last sunset in Hawaii.





I was actually trying to crop this photo but accidentally hit the wrong keys. I loved the end effect though and decided to show you this version instead!



Thursday, March 12, 2009

A Final Sunny Day in Waikiki

This trip to Hawaii had a surprisingly few number of sunny days. :-( Though this one happened to be one of them!













This is a Plumeria flower, which is used to construct the famous Hawaiian Leis.