Archive for February, 2010

ClapTrap

I am sorry, but honestly, I’ve heard some pretty damn awful speeches in my life, but the one made by Furlong, in closing the Games has to rank right up there, as being a total pile of craptrap. It is nice that Canada won so many Gold Medals, good for those athletes that did win, and all that, but please, don’t insult me by making me think that it was the greatest event, that suddenly unified a nation.

No wonder Stephen Harper looked so pained, so constipated, because he has done more to try and divide this nation, than anyone since Brian Mulroney. Yes, the games have brought us joy, pride in our Nation, our varied multi culturalism, that Stephen Harper has tried to use to devide us with, but there is a lot more to being a Canadian, than any game or sporting event can ever do.

I think if we could just sit back, cut out the opening & closing ceremonies, cut out the inane droning of the sports announcers from CTV, these games would have been a super hit. It would have been a huge hit, without the guessing games of what events were being shown, and if they had kept to their schedule.

Instead of telling us how good we are, why not simply let us see? Would it have hurt CTV to have simply shown the events, and not tried to impart their warped idea of what we wanted to know, like talking about how courageous this one was, that one is, or how they overcame terrible pasts, to get here?  Nice for an interview or wrap up piece, but not while they are out there performing.

And let’s talk about the commercials, that could do our National Anthem better than who they hired for the ceremonies. Makes you wonder what Furlong was thinking when he hired them, or Campbell for putting Furlong in charge. Like just how much did his campaign get?

Hey, lets not forget Stevie Boy who cancelled Parliament so he could attend the games, to say ‘Go Canada Go’ instead of concentrating on unemployment insurance, on how we are going to afford the 60 Billion Dollar deficit he created for his corporate buddies. Least he got a nice new Canada Jacket out of the deal, while we get billions in debts.

Cell Phone Rip Offs

Our little tiff with FIDO has made one thing clear for me.

NEVER, EVER, GET INTO ANY LONG TERM CONTRACT WITH THE CROOKS WHO RUN CELL PHONE SERVICES, SUCH AS BELL, ROGERS, AT&T, FIDO, TELUS, ETC.

Instead, once our contract is over with FIDO, we won’t even look at a contract plan, but will look at the PAY AS YOU GO OPTION.  To begin with, it may seem more expensive, as you pretty well have to pay full shot for your phone, though not necessarily.

Been looking at Virgin Mobile, and supposedly one can use the old phones now, by simply replacing the chip from FIDO.  Means NO NEW PHONE!   And that is how they trap you, these companies that are supposed to be providing a service, but in reality just rip you off.

WIND is another, that seemingly is going after the long term contract user, by giving them a credit, over several months, to help defray the cost of breaking one of those long term contracts. [Details from CBC News here]

With just 10 months left on our FIDO contract, the cost for us to break it, would be around $400.00.  We have 2 numbers, but if it was just one, the cost would be $200.00That is obscene.

Part of the real problem is, we are convinced we need the latest and newest in technology, in order to make our phone use more, enjoyable.  Thing is, we really don’t. Sure touch tone phones are easier than rotary dialler’s, and okay, nice to be able to send a text message, but be honest, when did a phone become a typewriter?  Isn’t the whole idea of phones, to be about VOICE COMMUNICATIONS?  Not a portable video watching thingee, or book reading gimmick? Sure as hell wasn’t about being a mobile secretary, or appointment book, yet today, that is exactly what they are.

Now we need laws, so people don’t yap on their phones, or text, while driving. We have kids clamoring for the latest so they post to their facebook pages, or friends, and like that helps our society how? 

Well it does help generate a whole new group of con artists, rip offs, and corporate thievery, that only screws up our credit even more. And that isn’t good, because these companies screw us royally. They are never wrong, though they fail to always provide clear and complete coverage. They change rules in mid-stream, but you wind up being screwed out of it.

Simple point is, a phone is to make calls. If we want to socialize with others, then meet for a coffee, get out and talk to people, make new friends in person, instead of having tons of followers on twitter or facebook. BE HUMAN, INSTEAD OF A MINDLESS DRONE.

Free Skate Hoopla

Used to be huge fans of figure skating, but then I grew up with the likes of Kurt Browning, Scott Hamilton, Jeff Buttle, Elvis Stoyko, and now we have Patrick Chan & Vaun Chiphaur. And let me say, they may be nice guys, but they are no Browning, no Stoyko. Then too, neither is the Olympics what it once was.

With professional athletes being allowed to compete in many of the events, just how pure is the Olympics to the ideal of amateur sports?

Also, I wonder at the scoring. Not saying it is rigged, but when things are hidden, convoluted, just how much harder is it to determine if it is rigged? Think about it, because you know what, if it could happen when the system was more clear, it can easily happen today.

Right now, no idea who will win the Free Skate, but have to say, that I am unimpressed by the show being put on, and by the endless chatter by the announcers. I mean our Pro Hockey Team just barely managed to pull out a win, and now our Skating Hopeful screwed up, but still got a personal best score? Like how does that work?

Maybe it is time to rethink about the Olympics, and amateur sports. Time perhaps to go back to the basics, to what they once were, instead of what they are today…  A GLORIFIED ADVERTISEMENT FOR COMPANIES.

Smart Grid or Spy?

The PollyAnna idea that big business, government, is not out to screw us, will only cost us more, quicker, than if we step back, and think for a second. Such as the new trend by Electric Companies and Appliance Manufacturers to develop what they call SMART GRID. [source]

Simply put, this is where Meters that record your electrical use, are replaced with new meters, that automatically send back to the Utility, your on going use of power. This can be in real time, so that the Electrical Company can know, to the minute, how much power you are consuming.

Doesn’t sound nefarious, does it?

Course that would be true, if one could trust that the sole purpose of these Companies is to insure a better use of our electricty. However, we all know that isn’t true. To begin with, it is also about these companies trying to save labor costs, by eliminating the need for employees to go out and read the meters.

That isn’t so bad, but then think about something else. Think about how with new technology, your appliances can communicate with the meter, telling it that it is being used. Think about the notion, that by tracking your usage, it can also determine if you are home, or how many of you are home. It can tell, by the minute, what appliances you have working, such as when you have the television on, or doing the laundry.  It can determine, to the minute, when you are using a lot of hot water, meaning you are either doing dishes, or having a long hot bath. And with the appliances, they can most likely even know which it is.

Now ‘Big Brother’ will know what to target your household for. Which telemarket scam to try your patience with, as it’ll know when you are home, saving them time while wasting yours. It’ll know what goods to market to you with mailings, phone calls, all because your appliances are talking.

And it opens up a whole bunch of new suckers to them too, because you see, everyone uses electricity, not everyone uses the internet. So attaching spyware may work online, but it doesn’t tap into everything you do, but tapping into your electrical use, well it just added millions of people to its database of suckers, waiting to be plucked.

AND don’t expect the Government to help you out, as there is NO PRIVACY LAWS STANDARD TO GUARD AGAINST MIS-USE OF THIS INFORMATION.

Olympic Torch

I really have to wonder, if the organizing committee for the Games, took anything into account, other than how to push their advertisers and corporate sponsors?

Almost a week after being lit, they are finally making the Olympic Torch in the Harbor, be viewed by spectators, without looking through a chain link fence. [source]

I simply do not understand the powers behind all this, who would not realize, that the lit torch would draw spectators? Instead they deliberately erected a fence to deny access, or to let people have an unobstructed view.  It amazes me, that anyone would want to look at it, because frankly it looks like a couple of implanted girders wrapped in tin foil, but hey, what do I know about design?

Personally, if these games were truly about real amateur athletes, I’d be more inclined to support them. However, it has become nothing more than a way for Big Business & Politicians, to strut their stuff. It really isn’t about the purity of amateurs, but about raking in cash.

Will these games attract more tourists to British Columbia? Perhaps, though why? I mean it isn’t like the media is touting anything about the province, about the communities here, and really, the opening ceremonies certainly didn’t do that. So how is the watching world going to know what kind of place this is? Has the Campbell Government taken out ads on those stations, like they have on CTV?

Somehow, I doubt it. Least not commisserate with what these games are costing us.