July 31, 2009
Until last week, I’d been away and incommunicado for a couple of months, working on a ship without internet access, so I’ve been out of touch with the news. Pretty much all I heard while I was out was the NDP winning in Nova Scotia, the Pens beating the Wings, and Michael Jackson finally going to hell. I must have missed the bit about the federal Tories tanking in the polls, because that *has* to be what’s behind the recent Arctic bloviations by Peter Mackay and official non-pronouncements like the establishment of a web page to show how little much we are living up to our claims to be an “Arctic nation”. And please forgive my cynicism at pronouncements like the promised shipbuilding agreement from earlier in the week.
Speaking as one who works on Arctic issues and has to work with others from other Arctic nations frequently, these are utter embarrassments.
July 31, 2009
As a follow-up to my post regarding the sorry state of journalistic ‘ethics’, I wanted to provide a link to this commentary by Nancy L. Cohen in the Huffington Post. As usual, there is historical precedent that the journalistic community has chosen to ignore and are therefore doomed to repeat.
July 28, 2009
Last night (July 27) on The Daily Show, Jon Stewart got Bill Kristol to admit that the federal government *can* provide better health care than the private sector.
What is it that Jon Stewart v Bill Kristol reminds me of? Oh yeah:
July 27, 2009
I feel it is my duty to avoid the unproductive, typical, politics-as-usual, lame-duck session in one’s last year in office
Get it? Those that actually finish what they start, that get elected and see their terms through to completion, those that treat those who elected them with enough respect to finish the term they were elected for, are dumb-asses participating in “unproductive, typical, politics-as-usual, lame-duck session(s)”. Why would anyone want to vote for anyone so unproductive? If this was spoken by someone as stupid as Sarah Palin, I would attribute it to a rhetorical slip-of-the-tongue, a mis-reading of the sheet as it were. However, it was spoken by someone as egomaniacal as Sarah Palin, and she sees herself as bigger than the average “unproductive” politician. She has heard too many whispers from sycophants like Greta van Susternan and Bill Kristol, she believes her own press, she’s drank of the Kool Aid. And the Kool Aid is that strong that the fact she is quitting to avoid ethics scandals from an office in which she accomplished nothing aside from “going national” doesn’t seem to have registered with her.
And are the locals who call themselves “Palintologists” okay with being used as stepping-stones.?
These are of course sadly not the words of someone stepping out of the limelight of high office – it is larded with too many references to “free speech” and reverance for (hiding behind?) “the troops” for that. In short, it’s rote Republican fare. These are the words of one attempting ascention to higher office by first quitting a lesser one in some kind of reverse-failure ploy – a strategic Jedi mind trick in which a defeat is a “strategic withdrawal”, a Dunkirk. That this might work, that this incomprehensibly stupid person could potentially have even the remotest chance at high office in the once-most-powerful nation is a testament to the smallness and divisiveness of its domestic politic.
Should you want to bathe in her stupidity, please feel free, you can watch her entire speech here. In reality it’s perfect – a perfect collection of barely-related soundbites, just right for the 30-second journalism of the day. (A journalism that has been recently maligned around these here parts, I note.) I recommend a strong drink and a chair – she’ll make you dizzy. Or sick. Or, if you’re Bill Kristol, apparently hard.
July 26, 2009
The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled the Hutterites’ cultural taboo against photography does not absolve them from the requirement to have their pictures on their Alberta driver’s license. The Hutterites’ belief is based on a selective interpretation of an arcane law a Commandment from the Jewish Book of Folktales Old Testament, and is on it own a demonstration of how religious bullshit works. The Commandment in question reads as follows:
You shall not make for yourself a carved image–any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
No likenesses of anything. Any thing. Any thing. What is a book if not a likeness of a thing? The Bible is a book, isn’t it?
July 23, 2009
No comments needed, really.