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Showing posts from December, 2008

Banning phrases for 2009

Lake Superior State University has issued their 34th annual List of Words to Be Banished from the Queen's English for misuse, over-use and general uselessness.

Here is their list for 2009 .
MONKEY (apparently a chat thing where you add a Monkey to proper nouns?
<3 (another chat thing meaning heart something. I really try not to chat a lot)
IT'S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAINWhich got me to thinking that we should ban some over used, abused, misleading, out right deceptive, phrases that our politicians have plagued us with this year.

Here are the one’s that irk me the most.

our Government is addressing the needs of
as in the conservatives have used more public funds to either buy votes from ethic associations or do some seeding in conservative regionssteady hand upon the
as in Harper has leadershippermanent defic…

Rev asked what Willy Loman did

Heh heh, I think that’s funny.  Anyway what the Rev asks for, the Rev gets. Here’s the list of jobs that this Willy Loman got paid for Peeled potatoes on Thursday night
Delivered Fish and Chips on Friday night
Delivered the Globe and Mail on Saturday morning
Manufactured things that are now made elsewhere or no longer made at all
Bic pen tubes and caps
Circular rotary file card systems
Timex display stands
A pulper at Facelle
Horseback trail guide and Garbage man at Blue WaterSculptor Assistant for projects at the CNE and Pickering Power Station
Packer at a Dominion Store Opening
Room Service Elevator operator at Chateau Lake Louise, met with the Maharishi Mahesh YogiDish washer in Banff, met narcs pretending to be born againsSold the Straight, got chased by US sailors and some other strange folkSold mens wear at Towers Dept Store
Sold mens wear at Miracle Mart Dept Store
Ended up selling everything at a bunch of Miracle Mart Dept Stores
Sold Great West Life life insurance until I ran out friends

Meet the Bloggers, The Green New Deal, Van Jones

Meet the Bloggers is a online video show created by Robert Greenwalds Brave New Foundation which is broadcast online every Friday, focusing on unconventional political opinion and analysis, which I think I signed up for once. This is their last episode for the year, aired on December 19th.

It features Van Jones, author (The Green Collar Economy), environmental leader and founder of Green for All. He is one of the hope driven, change is possible Obama inspired activists. Positive, inspirational, almost cultist sounding. much like Cory Booker, the major of Newark, New Jersey (another inspiring politician that Americans will hear more from).

As per it’s title the show talks about the “Green New Deal”, getting America back to work by not only creating new technologies, but also dealing with getting back to work greening existing buildings (office towers, homes, etc.).

Their conversation incorporates green technology, unemployment, poverty, racism, the corporate media, life in Kansas and…

A message from John Lennon

With the approval of widow Yoko Ono, former Beatle and peace activist John Lennon, who was killed 28 years ago, appeared digitally in a 30-second television ad in support of the "One Laptop per Child" campaign. With the approval of widow Yoko Ono, former Beatle and peace activist John Lennon, who was killed 28 years ago, appeared digitally in a 30-second television ad in support of the "One Laptop per Child" campaign. JAWL:

Harold Pinter's Art, Truth and Politics Lecture

Political language, as used by politicians, does not venture into any of this territory [of the artist] since the majority of politicians, on the evidence available to us, are interested not in truth but in power and in the maintenance of that power. To maintain that power it is essential that people remain in ignorance, that they live in ignorance of the truth, even the truth of their own lives. What surrounds us therefore is a vast tapestry of lies, upon which we feed. From Harold Pinter's Nobel Lecture on 7 December 2005. Harold Pinter died of cancer on Xmas eve at the age of 78. Pinter was an English playwright, screenwriter, actor, director, poet, political activist, and president of the Central School of Speech and Drama who is best known for his work on The Birthday Party, The Caretaker, The Homecoming, Betrayal, The Servant, The Go-Between, The French Lieutenant's Woman, The Trial and Sleuth. More on his web site here.

Hardcode 1

This first episode of Hardcode is a preview of our first project: Hacking a remote controlled car to allow us to control it with a wii controller, a wii fit balance board and the touch screen of an iPhone. JAWL:

Closed for the season

I want a coalition for Christmas

The same overwhelming majority of Canadians who believe that Bush is a criminal and have cheered the election of Obama have turned a blind eye and deaf ear to the ideological social conservative transformation of their own country.

Instead they believe US styled political attack ads that warn about the evils of a potential socialist, separatist alliance that is out to destroy our Canadian democracy.

The truth unfortunately is the opposite.

We now have a cabal of social conservative, PMO politicos that have run rough shod over the ministries of our government.

Similar to the destructive infection of neo conservative ideologies into all facets of the American political process, Harpers coterie of PMO agents in three very short years have infiltrated our governmental, departments, institutions and bureaucratic decision making processes.

Their influence has redefined, weakened and in some cases eliminated safeguards, funding and rights that protected the health of Canadians and provided …

Make it illegal to allow homelessness

I have an infrastructure plan.

We have bailed out the banks to the tune of $75 billion by buying the conservative made sub-prime mortgages that were created over the last two years. We are paying $800 million for roads in Alberta and $200 million as our share of the Asper family National museum in Winnipeg of all places.

We have just temporarily bailed out GM and Chrysler by providing $4 billion in loans, which I agree with if it will save jobs and Harper’s new found interest running a deficit and saving the economy is also expected to include additional bailouts of forestry, mining and at some time I guess the oil companies.

Well I think it is time that we bail out the homeless.

When I was a kid, in my late teens you got hassled by the cops if they found you on Yonge Street after the bars closed. You couldn’t sleep in a doorway or over a grate wrapped in blanket. If they found you in an alley or sleeping in a park they arrested you.

When you arrived in a new city, you had to find so…


Nice to see that Flaherty has expanded his circle of advisers beyond the passerby walking down the street.

Harper’s finance minister has broadened his sources of economic advise to include a provincial finance ministers meeting this week in Saskatchewan, a quickly formed advisory council of CEOs from various Canadian corporations and even advice from the Liberals.

Of course all of this is to show that Harper and Flaherty are reacting to the dramatic changes to Canada’s economic fortunes that have occurred, apparently over the last two weeks.

We are being asked to forget that all this was projected last summer by the government’s own EDC (Export Development Corporation) as well as every other economic forecaster and that Harper’s November Financial forecast was not an ideological attack on the financial foundation of our electoral process but instead a cautious approach to steering Canada through rough waters.

It is now the new partisan approach to governance and even Preston Manning …

Did you know 3.0

This is the latest version of the Did You Know video, filled with amazing facts. well maybe not amazing, but certainly interesting.
Did you know 3.0 for 2008 - Newly Revised Edition Created by Karl Fisch, and modified by Scott McLeod; Globalization & The Information Age. It was even adapted by Sony BMG at an executive meeting they held in Rome this year. Credits are also given to Scott McLeod, Jeff Brenman

Canadas leader says depression possible

At least that is the headline in the Taiwan News .

For a guy who has been so hesitant to use the R-word for the last 4 months, maybe Harper should of chosen his words with more care during his CTV interview, and stayed away from the D-word.

The Taiwan Herald has pieced together different Canadian economic stories, about Harpers uncertainty, the automotive bailout, half a million potential job loses, and cancelled tar sands projects to paint a very grim picture for the Canadian economy.

Probably not a good thing for foreign investment or the Canadian dollar since Taiwan has the worlds fifth largest foreign reserves.

Then again maybe that is how it looks from the outside.

Or more likely the Taiwanese just want to rub Canada s nose in it for being so arrogant at the last couple of world conferences.

PS: They also have a picture of Ignatieff and a side bar piece about him next to the article. Yep, don't think they like Harper in Taiwan.


No contrition, no plan, just more arrogance

If Ignatieff was looking for any contrition from Harper for presenting his ideological financial update in November there was none demonstrated last night on the Conservative Television Network.

Last night Murphy and the Atlantic CTV affiliate, basically got their payback interview for harpooning Dion during the last days of the election campaign.

There was no stumbling by Harper or twisting of language and semantics by Murphy during this interview, it was a scripted message from a still arrogant prime minister.

His opening review of his government’s own economic performance set the tone for this partisan piece.
In fact if you actually look at the performance of the Canadian economy it was actually a better year than I thought it was going to be we’ve actually net created jobs, one of the few western countries that has, although we have recently started to see some job loses particularly in Ontario...

He then goes into deep thought to give us his new found prediction for negative grow…

New Bushs Boot camp

Here's a new Flash Game from T-Enterprise about Bush dodging shoes.
Players of Bush's Boot Camp take on the role of a gun-toting security agent, and must shoot shoes out of the air before they can hit the hapless president.

Click Start, then click the guns and shoot the shoes, not the president.

Now we know what the 75 billion was for

The lies we have been told by the conservative government have been piling up at a faster rate than the time my two dogs ate the chocolate cake.
Yesterday we found out from the Globe and Mail that the conservatives implemented their own subprime mortgage scheme in Canada in their first budget in 2006.

US mortgage insurers AIG, PMI, and others moved into the Canadian market to compete with the government run CHMC and were welcomed by our Finance Minister.

Flaherty announced that not only would Ottawa guarantee the business of U.S. insurers, it was doubling that guarantee to $200-billion.Think about it, this was the ideal neoconservative, free enterprise wet dream, allowing the free market to take over the government’s role of mortgage insurance and regulation.
So as the warning bells were just starting to go off in the US about the subprime mortgage crisis, the conservatives opened the Canadian market up to the same risky business practices and by October 2007 Canadians could now get ins…

Four lists of ten things

I like this time of the year, you get snow, food, alcohol and lists of things from the previous twelve months. Here are few top tens for 2008 list from Time.

 The top 10 discoveries from 2008 
Snow on Mars
Mystery insect in London
Foetus in a man
Melamine in Chinese milk
Virgin-born shark
iPhone "kill switch"
Seven human feet washed up on Pacific Northwest coast
Red Sox jersey in Yankee Stadium concrete
Marajuana in 2,700-year-old Chinese tomb
Lost Beatles interview from 1964
 The top 10 fuel efficient vehicles for 2008 
Toyota Prius, 46.65 mpg
Honda Civic Hybrid, 42.25 mpg
Nissan Altima hybrid, 34.1 mpg
Toyota Camry hybrid, 33.45 mpg
Ford Escape/Mercury Mariner/Mazda Tribute hybrids, 32.2 mpg
Toyota Yaris, 32.15 mpg
Toyota Corolla, 32.05 mpg
Honda Fit, 30.7 mpg
Honda Civic, 29.6 mpg
Nissan Versa, 28.25 mpgThe timely absence of GM and Chrysler from the list is obvious, but it would be interesting to see the volumes of cars sold to get some idea how important fuel efficiency was in the buying deci…

40 Inspirational Speeches in 2 Minutes

Here's some very cool video editing from the folks over at Over Thinking It they have great website too.

Here's the transcript:
Shame on you. This could be the greatest night of our lives, but you're going to let it be the worst. And I guarantee a week won't go by in your life you won't regret walking out, letting them get the best of you.

Well, I'm not going home. We've come too far! And I'm going to stay right here and fight for this lost cause.

A day may come when the courage of men fails... but it is not THIS day. The line must be drawn HERE. This far, no further!

I'm not saying it's going to be easy. You're going to work harder than you ever worked before. But that's fine, we'll just get tougher with it!

If a person grits his teeth and shows real determination, failure is not an option. That's how winning is done! Believe me when I say we can break this army here, and win just one for the Gipper.

But I say to you what every …

Post it notes

Been a bit light on posting this week as I'm kind of busy, you know trying to sell stuff while we are in a recession. Sorry about that.

Here’s some notes from posts I was planning on doing.

 Prentice stumbles on to the world stage 

While spewing conservative rhetoric at the UN climate summit in Poznan, Poland, our new Environment Minister Jim Prentice stated:
We must bring to these negotiations a sense of urgency and a shared vision for long-term co-operation ... And we must ensure that our vision is informed by the best science and also by the traditional knowledge and voices of aboriginal people.Unfortunately Jim's department refused to let one of it’s Senior Scientists, Don MacIver attend the meeting.
MacIver was to act as chair of the organizing committee for the World Meteorological Organization's climate conference and speak at the talks, with his travel costs being covered by the WMO, was refused permission to attend by Ottawa.MacIver has since resigned. Yep way to kee…

Thanks for clearing that up Mr Ignatieff

So in answer to yesterday's question I think there is still a coalition. For now . JAWL

Hey Iggy whats it going to be the coalition or me

Our sanctimonious prime minister is offering an invitation to the new liberal leader to sit down with him to discuss the economic situation and even present some proposals.
I'm optimistic that the next leader of the Opposition may want to look at different kinds of arrangements in the best interest of the country,'' said Harper.

I hope the next Liberal leader, the first thing he'll do will be willing to sit down with me and have that kind of (economic) discussion,'' said Harper.
Although splitting up the coalition is a self serving move for Harper, it’s such a big step for our proroguing prime minister that I am sure he wants Canadians to believe that he is now acting somewhat like a parliamentarian.

After all he is now offering to talk to at least one member of the opposition.

Of course the conservatives do need time to change their radio ads and get the new message out to their storm troopers.

Meanwhile being prorogued apparently doesn’t prevent our government…

Liberal if necessary, not necessarily Liberal

Congratulations to the Liberal party for selecting a new leader quickly.

By the early reports coming from the MSM, Mr. Ignatieff seems to be getting a very favorable welcome with articles about his ascent to power, a pictorial slide biography and a special presentation tomorrow night on Canwest Global.

Now if the Liberal party could just as quickly start working with the NDP on proposing some detailed economic proposals that they will immediately implement as a Coalition government, it will set a bar of acceptability and a comparison for the proposals that Harper will present in January.

Right now Harper is getting a free ride on setting the economic strategy and is throwing down a tongue in cheek gauntlet, inviting the opposition parties to offer specific suggestions for managing the economy.

Take him up on his offer and ask for formal meetings with the appropriate ministers, force his hand to cooperate, show Canadians that the Coalition is putting the economic emergency ahead of …

If the Liberals have any closed doors, please use them

The federal Liberal party has been a soap opera for the last three days and personally I am not a big fan of soap operas or washing one's dirty laundry in public.

It must be some carryover from the Martin regime

The cons must be laughing their asses off, although that really doesn’t matter since they are mostly assholes anyway.

However Jack Layton and the NDP might be getting a little concerned.

I would assume that the Liberals must be communicating with him since the NDP have been respectfully silent, while all this supposedly back room maneuvering plays out in hourly press releases.

At this precise moment in time, it looks like it will end with Michael Ignatieff as the new leader, but who knows by the time I spell check this post.

Being a non party member and just plain lazy I have no idea whether Ignatieff will make a good leader. I have never heard him speak or seen him in action, other than the conservative ads where Dion said governing was a tough job. Oh and he was for t…

Fiddling while Rome burns

I have added Paul Krugman to my American blog listings this morning.

This is Paul Krugman the Princeton, Professor of Economics and International Affairs who is picking up his Nobel prize for economics this week.

Unlike his weekly New York Times, political opinion pieces his blog entitled The Conscience of a Liberal consists of shorter posts on economics and the economy.

Economics by definition is the branch of knowledge concerned with the production, consumption, and transfer of wealth, so I figure if you are going to listen to any of these economists it might as well be a liberal one that looks at the numbers and mathematical equations with some concern about workers and not just balance sheets.
Here’s Krugman’s Saturday post on November’s unemployment numbers released last week where everyone is in shock at the 500,000 plus jobs lost last month in the US (70,000 plus in Canada),

He brings up the point that the way we calculate the unemployment rate does not take into considerati…

Surprisingly Taser International misses rare marketing opportunity

The CBC ran tests on 41 Tasers used by the majority of policing organizations in the world and found that ten percent of the tested weapons fired a stronger current than the company claims.
The tests' designer, University of Montreal biomedical engineer Pierre Savard, says they provide a rare glimpse at the effectiveness of Taser's weapons, which are not subject to rigorous independent examination.

"When you use a cellphone, well, cellphones have to respect a set of standards … for the electric magnetic field that it emits. The Taser, well, nobody knows except Taser International."

The four faulty stun-guns were all manufactured before 2005, raising concerns that the weapons deteriorate with age. The RCMP they will be pulling a sample of their own Tasers for testing based on the results.

Savard says weapons that fire a too strong current present a dangerous situation because officers are trained to fire the Tasers directly at a target's chest.

"When you com…

Maintain the coalition and Harper has lost

I heard my first conservative ad today.

The ad claims that Dion is trying to overturn the results of the last election and is being supported by the separatist party that is out to destroy Canada.

Although your first reaction is outright anger over the arrogant distortion of fact, hell the outright lies...

in the end it is the ridiculousness of their attack will come back to bite Harper and his conservative followers in the ass come January as long the coalition of the NDP and the Liberal parties remains in tack.

Regardless of whether Dion remains interim leader of the Liberals and therefore the Coalition or is replaced, the die has been cast for Harper's eventual removal and at a time when the opposition parties decide they can overthrow him in general election.

Come January when the legislature resumes the Coalition can maintain it's non confidence stance and the Bloc who are not part of the coalition can vote in support of the conservatives and can continue to do so until …

Ed Broadbents warning

As a follow up to his television interview where he outright accused Harper of lying to the Canadians, Ed Broadbent has written a scathing article on Harper’s reckless power grab.
Excerpts from the Globe and Mail

Since first being elected to the House of Commons in 1968, at a time of great national unity, I have never witnessed a Canadian prime minister consciously decide to disunite the nation. Until now

Now, for the first time in our history, we have a prime minister prepared to set a fire that we may not be able to put out, for the paltry purpose of saving himself from a confidence vote on Monday.

In almost every sentence, paragraph and page coming from Mr. Harper, his ministers and Conservative MPs, we're getting distortions intended to delegitimize a democratically formed coalition, proposed in accordance with normal parliamentary practices, between the Liberals and the NDP.

Instead of focusing on accommodation, on the need for early action on the economy, Mr. Harper is launch…

Well why the hell not

Not only did Harper convince the governor general to give him a do over today and therefore weaken our democracy for years to come, he also won an award from the Conference of Presidents (of Major American Jewish Organizations).

Now please make sure you are sitting...

The award their first ever International Leadership Award .

But wait it gets better...

Here’s Harpers acceptance quote:
Canada stands with Israel, and will stand with any nation willing to put its trust in its people and follow the principles of freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law.That’s it for me. I'm taking the cynic's advice and drinking scotch for the rest of night.


Sit wait and prepare

To Mr. Dion and Mr. Layton,

Respond to the torrent of lies that will be broadcasted by Mr. Harper’s conservatives over the next seven weeks with economic leadership and social empathy.

Prepare, plan and propose economic stimuli projects, industry focussed support and the necessary social assistance for the increasing number of Canadians that will be loosing their employment, homes and livelihood.

The objective is to survive a world wide recession with the least amount of hardship for Canadians and our businesses.

The country needs leadership, not ideological scheming nor hysterical fear mongering so leave that to Harper and continue to force him to act responsibly.

And if he fails to do so in January or at any time during this parliament bring him down.


Prorogue This


Heres something we can stop doing with a coalition

Another U.S. Iraq war resister has been ordered to leave the country.
Dean Walcott says Immigration officials have said he must leave Canada by Jan. 6 or face deportation.

This is something we can immediately stop doing with a coalition government.


Prorogation delay will only hurt more Canadians

The prorogation of parliament will only delay the implementation of the economic strategies outlined by the new coalition government.

Even if the Governor General agrees to Mr. Harper's expected request to prorogue this session of the legislature, the prorogation will not nullify the confidence vote on the Economic Update presented last week.

In fact it would have to be brought down, or voted upon at the resumption of the legislature in late January.

It would be highly unlikely that the conservative government could present a revised economic action plan prior to addressing the existing confidence vote on the update and also highly unlikely that the coalition would or could vote in favor of the update, which they have emphatically stated non confidence in.

In other words Mr. Harpers ploy and only reason for the prorogation would be to stall for time and then upon the return to parliament immediately disband and call upon the Governor General for an election.

The two options being…

Like fish in a barrel

I just spent the wee hours of the morning silently shooting down the outrageous statements made by the outraged Tories quoted in this mornings newspapers. Try it at home, it is fun and quite uplifting.

Here’s some to get you started:
Defence Minister Peter MacKay says he does not believe the opposition parties are acting in the best interest of democracy or the country by agreeing to form a coalition government.Excuse me Peter, think back now... what exactly did you do in 2003, after winning the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada.
Mr. Harper stated , I would certainly not want to find myself governing this economy today … under a situation where I was required to follow socialist economics and be at the behest of the veto of the separatistsActually Mr. Harper that is the make up of the House of Commons that Canadians voted for and you sir by not winning a majority government were expected to govern under those same circumstances.

Instead your government ignored th…

You got to know when to fold them

Harper was in parliament today, accusing Dion of playing the biggest political game in history and is claiming that the decision to hold a non confidence vote should wait until the end of January.

Harper had the gaul to try and defend last Thursday's fiscal update, saying it included help for seniors hit by the worldwide financial turmoil and other measures to stimulate the economy, such as doubling infrastructure spending to record levels next year.

Sorry this is a government that committed $75 billion plus to the banks without as much as a nod to the opposition parties that they said they would work with let alone presenting it to people’s representatives in parliament.

A government that then had the arrogance to stand before the Canadian people and claim that it’s plan for the impending “great depression” like world wide collapse, that it's leader was so concerned about in Peru, consisted of eliminating the right to strike for government workers and withdrawing funding for p…

Other than the separation thing, I would vote Bloc

Over the last couple elections, I’ve heard both my liberal and closet conservative friends claim that it was too bad they couldn’t vote for Duceppe.

When you listened to some of the English debates he came across as the most confident leader and usually the one with the best social agenda.

Which makes sense since he has had a seat in parliament longer than the other leaders and he is trying to meet the needs of Canadians living in La Belle province.

He was he first Bloc member elected, back in 1990, when the Quebec coalition put together by Mulroney broke up.

Plus most of the Bloc’s platform and initiatives would be supported by at least 60% of Canadians.

Wants economic aid to manufacturing
Wants economic aid to forestry
Supports Kyoto
Protests violence against women
Supports rights for Indigenous People
Concerned about aboriginal health issues
Wants to protect unions
Wants to repatriate Omar Khadr
Supports Firearms Registry
Voted against extension of Afghan mission
Had a plan for dealing with s…