Archive for December, 2009

Worked Before, Why Not Again?

Stephen Harper has once more reached into a bag of parliamentary tricks to survive a possible stormy session, by prorogue Parliament until March 2010.  Amazing at how his pit bull supporters all rally around this tactic, to in effect, DENY CANADIANS AN OPEN GOVERNMENT.  Seems when things get tough for Mr. Harper and his band of deceitful liars, they simply whine to the Governor General, to adjourn Parliament.

The move to prorogue, or suspend, Parliament is widely seen as a strategic move by Harper to gain a majority on Senate committees while possibly also avoiding criticism over the Afghan detainee issue. ( source – CBC News )

He did it last December, with the economy in near ruins. Still is, though he won’t admit that, and now once more he is doing it, to avoid being held accountable for his actions with the Afghanistan Detainee issue, not to mention the affair into his stimulus cheque fiasco, where he has misused public money to promote his own party.

The shame is, many seem to not just care, or they can’t see the forest for the trees.

Stephen Harper campaigned both times, on providing Canada with an ACCOUNTABLE GOVERNMENT.   So how can they be held accountable, if they are off enjoying the Olympic Games in Vancouver?

I wonder, what happened to ‘Courage of One’s Convictions’?  If Mr. Harper and his party (along with their foaming surrogates) are so certain of their programs working, that nothing wrong was done in turning over prisoners for torture, then why don’t they simply have the balls to defend their actions before Parliament?  WHY CUT AND RUN?

If their Crime Bill, touted as being a make or break confidence issue is so important,why adjourn Parliament and have the bill die?  Course the Long Gun Registry Bill will not die, but will go ahead when Parliament resumes, which will take away needed information from Law Enforcement, but hey, that is okay, right? AS LONG AS HARPER CAN WATCH THE OLYMPICS IN PERSON.

Common Sense should kick in here, and Canadians should simply turf this egomaniac out of office, as he has done nothing but bolster corporate earnings, on the backs of the consumer and worker. He has left us dangling, at the mercy of rampant corporate gouging, such as in his new cellular phone legislation, in his gutting of CIFA and consumer protection from not just poor workmanship, shoddy products, but from tainted food and medicines.

Stephen Harper has lied so many times, it seems people have forgotten, that honesty even exists in Government. They forget that he has failed to keep any campaign promises, has lied, and made people afraid. He has not got the guts, to stand and defend his failed policies, or to defend his support of hate, of torture. Instead he wants to stack the Senate so he can pass his further gutting of our social programs, to further pollute our lakes, rivers, and streams, all in order to support his corporate backers.

Airport Security

Who IS in charge of Canadian Airport Security?

With the latest bombing attempts, in the United States, and the sudden beefing up of Airport Security everywhere, I wonder, just who is in charge of our safety when travelling by air?

I suppose I am naive, because until I read todays article, I always assumed that it was the RCMP, the national police force, that was in charge of Airport Security. I really did, because after all, isn’t that what a national police force does? Offer security to the citizens? I guess I was wrong, and after reading more about the story, I am even more confused than ever.

Seems that the RCMP & Local Law Enforcement Agencies will be allowed to HELP the existing security forces, in screening and other procedures, to protect passengers. We even have a agency, just like Big Brother in the States, but I wonder, who runs that agency?

Transport Canada has said it authorized the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) to use RCMP and local police officers to assist with some procedures specific to the screening process “to alleviate the immediate pressures at the security checkpoint.” ( source – CBC News )

So is CATSA run by the Government or is it another Private Firm / Organization that has been hired to protect us from the nasty terrorists? And is the people hired by CATSA government trained, or are they private firms hired to provide the necessary personnel? If the latter, what training are they given, if any?

I know in the United States everything is PRIVATELY RUN. A government agency oversees it, but then the US Military even uses PRIVATE FIRMS for security of its Generals in Iraq, so I wonder, why do they even have a military?  Why is there an FBI or an RCMP, if a Private Firm is so much better at providing security. Why not hire them to do law enforcement too. After all, they are supposed to be better trained, equipped, and no Government Union to demand unreasonable wages.

Privatization can be good, in certain areas. HOWEVER, the Conservative push to make EVERYTHING RUN UNDER PRIVATE OWNERSHIP IS WRONG & DANGEROUS. I mean just look at how well it worked in the United Statesl. It was PASSENGERS who managed to subdue a would be bomber, and NOT THE SECURITY PERSONNEL WHO STOPPED HIM FROM GETTING ABOARD.

AND YET ISN’T THAT WHAT THEIR JOB IS SUPPOSED TO BE?  PREVENTION?

Seems to me, that across the world, Government has been pushed to opt out of its responsibilities to its citizens. One of the worst legacies of the Bush Era is that drive to privatization, at any costs. The result has been an endless war in Iraq and Afghanistan. A drive that helped turn the world’s economy into a shambles, as it gave business supreme power, ignoring any regulations to keep them honest.  And now security of nations, is at risk, because it is more important to keep costs down, and use Private Firms to keep the Airports & Airplanes safe.

Yet, all that time, money, has accomplished nothing, but increase the risk to the citizen. Don’t get me wrong, because in some instances Privately run organizations can do an amazing bit of good. The problem isn’t that, but in that it requires proper Government Oversight. And with the drive to privatization, Conservatives are forgetting that important aspect. IF you want a private firm to take over, it still needs to be MONITORED.

Like Self Regulation DOES NOT WORK.  Prime examples are todays Food Recalls, Product Recalls, that are a DIRECT RESULT OF SELF REGULATION FAILING THE CONSUMER. The same holds true for SECURITY, and in other areas of our society.

Tylenol Gel Cap Recalled

Johnson and Johnson recalled FIVE lots of the product last month, which I missed hearing about, and today’s recall is the 100 count red top bottle of the Arthritis Gel Caps.  Seems there is a mouldy smell to them, which can make people get the runs, and vomit.  But not to worry, because it isn’t life threatening, least so far.

The cause, is believed to be some chemical reacting with another chemical used in treating wood pallets that store and transport packing material.

The company says the odour results from trace amounts of a chemical called 2,4,6-tribromoanisole. That chemical is believed to result from the breakdown of another chemical used to treat wooden pallets that transport and store packaging materials. ( source – CBC News )

I guess my question would be, is how does chemicals used to treat wooden pallets, that hold packing material, get inside a pill container?

One other question too, WHY AREN’T THEY RECALLED HERE IN CANADA AS WELL?

Should Voters Decide…

Down in the States, there is a movement to have the Voters in DC determine the fate of equal rights for Homosexuals. Awhile back, in California a similiar vote was held, to deny Homosexuals the right to Marriage, under CIVIL LAW.  In many states, there are voter passed laws denying these rights, and you have to wonder, what would have happened back in the 1950’s & 1960’s if the Voters had the option to deny similar laws, to the Colored Population?

I mean think about it.

Back then, many were of the belief that Blacks were not entitled to similar benefits, as the White citizens where. This included the right to marry non Black persons. Equal rights such as the right to attend any public school, without fear of bullying, or attack, were also part of those rights. The right to have clubs on campus, or for that matter to participate in sports programs, including the major leagues, were not allowed, back then.

WHAT WOULD THE RESULT HAVE BEEN THEN, IF THE VOTER HAD BEEN GIVEN THE RESPONSIBILITY?

So why should it be any different today, for Homosexuals?  Is it simply because back then, the Northern Churches had more clout, and supported equal rights for people of color, while today, most Churches all oppose equal rights for homosexuals, including the Northern Churches?

As a citizen of my Country, am I not already guaranteed all rights, associated with that citizenship, irrespective of my color, my religion, my sexual orientation? When did it become a right of any group, to deny a minority it’s rightS of citizenship? Surely to have the issue placed before the voters, is nothing more than an attempt to circumvent the Justice System.

AND HOW IS THAT DEMOCRATIC?

To Inform or To Persuade?

I wonder, what is the real role of the Media today?

Is it to inform us, the people, of all that is going on in our world, or perhaps it has changed, and now is to persuade us to accept a particular slant, a special viewpoint?  I mean look at how our politics has changed, largely in part to the way the Media has manipulated, and been manipulated, by the so called Political Parties & their Surrogate Organizations?

Yet maybe more telling is the recent battle between the Networks and the Cable Companies.

Who can anyone believe, when you see these ads from both sides, complaining about the other guy. The issue is that local television markets are not doing well, okay, I get that. However, is this because they aren’t getting enough of the pie from the Cable Companies?

I have been in business since I was eleven years old. Wouldn’t call myself successful either, and I think we did give a good product, for the prices charged. However, there are other factors that determine the survival of a business, not just product and prices. There is also demand.

Do we need our local television stations? Do they really provide us with a comprehensive array of local news, events, that help shape our world? Does CHEK or A-Channel (in Victoria) really provide any service to the community it serves, or is it just rehashed news from their Network Affiliations?

And do we even watch? I mean CHEK for example is running movies, running paid advertising, and shows ‘news & weather updates’ for hours on end.  I don’t know, but I get more news online, than I do from the television, network or local.  Still, the current ads discuss how local agencies, like the YWCA or some Community Charity Group needs local television, to get their messages across to people in their region.

Now, Cable does give a community channel, one I tend to visit now and then, that is always there with the latest on charity events here. I don’t find it that easy to find on the local stations, though, so I wonder, do the stations in Calgary and Ottawa do more, than the local one’s here? Are those events better covered, than here? Or is it simply another ruse by the Television Networks to grab some of our money, to line their pockets with? Have they conned those people now appearing, who says local television matters, or even paid them with a nice donation or two?

The media’s role is to inform us, not to provide us with its own agenda of what is, what isn’t relevant. That is our job, as viewers and I’d say that with the number of people who are moving away from those channels, that perhaps they should be looking more at what they are providing, than blaming the Cable Companies. I mean don’t get me wrong, Cable is not any big benefactor either, but really, isnt it time we stopped pointing the finger to everyone, but ourselves, for the problems we are in?

From credit suddenly becoming due, to television networks not making money, to car companies claiming they aren’t making sales, isn’t it time to step up and realize, that the product they are giving, is just not what we want, or need?  Cars that get the same gas mileage as they did 20 years ago, is no improvement, despite the deluxe stereo system. Television shows that appear on 20 different channels, is not new, or exciting. Besides which, a guy can only watch one channel at a time, so how about producing some content that isn’t simply a rehash from a dozen other channels?