Thursday, March 31, 2011

Sometimes I Wonder...

...if I shared a womb with Christopher Hitchens.

What he writes about Libya is exactly what I think, but with far more clarity and background knowledge, of course. The man is a master at offering up a plethora of pithy statements:

U.S. lacks courage vs. Gadhafi
"Far from being brutalized by four decades of domination by a theatrical madman, the Libyan people appear fairly determined not to sink to his level and to be done with him and his horrible kin.

They also seem, at the time of writing, to want this achievement to represent their own unaided effort. Admirable as this is, it doesn’t excuse us from responsibility."
"Doing nothing is not the absence of a policy; it is, in fact, the adoption of one.

“Neutrality” favors the side with the biggest arsenal. “Nonintervention” is a form of interference."
"Libya is a country with barely 6 million inhabitants. By any computation, however cold and actuarial, the regime of its present dictator cannot possibly last very much longer. As a matter of pure realism, the post-Gadhafi epoch is upon us whether we choose to welcome the fact or not. The immediate task is therefore to limit the amount of damage Gadhafi can do and sharply minimize the number of people he can murder.

Whatever the character of the successor system turns out to be, it can hardly be worsened if we show it positive signs of friendship and solidarity. But the pilots of Gadhafi’s own air force, who flew their planes to Malta rather than let themselves be used against civilians, have demonstrated more courage and principle than the entire U.S. Sixth Fleet."
Christopher Hitchens: If Saddam still ruled, there would be no Arab Spring
"The most heartening single image of the past month — eclipsing even the bravery and dignity of the civilian fighters against despotism in Syria and Libya — was the sight of Hoshyar Zebari arriving in Paris to call for strong action against the depraved regime of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi. Here was the foreign minister of Iraq, and the new head of the Arab League, helping to tilt the whole axis of local diplomacy against one-man rule. In May, Iraq will act as host to the Arab League summit, and it will be distinctly amusing and highly instructive to see which Arab leaders have the courage, or even the ability, to leave their own capitals and attend. The whole scene is especially gratifying for those of us who remember Zebari as the dedicated exile militant that he was 10 years ago, striving to defend his dispossessed people from the effects of Saddam Hussein’s chemical weapons."
"I admit that Egyptian and Tunisian and other demonstrators did not take to the streets waving Iraqi flags, as if in emulation. (Though Saad-Eddin Ibrahim, intellectual godfather of the Egyptian democracy movement, did publicly hail the fall of Saddam as an inspiration, and many leaders of the early Lebanese “spring” spoke openly in similar terms.) This reticence is quite understandable since, apart from the northern Kurdish region of Iraq from which Foreign Minister Zebari hails, the liberation of the country was not entirely the work of its own people. But this point has become a more arguable one since the Arab League itself admitted that there are certain regimes that are impervious to unassisted overthrow from within. Gaddafi’s is pre-eminently one of these, and Saddam’s was notoriously so, as the repeated terror-bombings and gassings of the Shiite and Kurdish populations amply proved."
"But even with his fangs drawn, Gaddafi remained a filthy nuisance. As The New York Times reported in a brilliant dispatch last week, he forced Western oil companies to pay the $1.5-billion fine levied on him for Lockerbie. He continued to deprive his people — just look at how poor and scruffy everybody is when seen on television — while squandering Libya’s immense wealth on personal prestige projects. His bloody interventions in Liberia and Darfur and Chad — where yet another civilian airliner was blown up, this time a French one — should long ago have earned him an indictment for war crimes and crimes against humanity. Like Saddam Hussein, he has flagrantly and hysterically insisted on defining himself as the problem, the fons et origo of Libya’s misery and the region’s woes. Why, then, do we coyly insist on the pretence that we are targeting “his forces” but not him?"
"Hoshyar Zebari happily cited as precedent the no-fly zone that for a long time protected northern and southern Iraq from Saddam Hussein’s helicopter gunships. But he knows perfectly well that the logic of this is inexorable. Every day, Saddam’s ground forces fired on those planes. Every day, the post-Kuwait ceasefire agreement became more frayed and breached. Every day, it became plainer that Iraq was the miserable hostage to the whims of a single tyrant.

The immediate task now is to assimilate those lessons, shorten the time in which the knowledge gained can be applied, call the evil by its right name, and face Gaddafi with a stark choice between his own death and his appearance in the dock."
"When the Arab League meets in May, it should welcome a new Libyan provisional government on the soil of a free Iraq. Then we will have closed the circle — and vindicated all those brave people who fell in bringing down the first and worst bastion of the ancien regime."
Yes, Brother Hitch! Yes!!

More good stuff from Hitch.

I'm afraid I'm on another side on this one, compared to some of my favourite bloggers. Glavin may be the only one with whom I'm in concert.

Maybe I'm still an old leftist at heart.

Oh, and Thank You George Bush!

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Oh, That's Rich

Two Things

How to remove yourself from the gene pool:

Child sex ratio a major cause for concern
"The female girl child is still unwanted and their number has fallen to all time low since independence, latest census data released on Thursday revealed. The child sex ratio for 2011 stands at 914 girls down from 927 girls for 1,000 boys in 2001."
"Analysis of the data shows that the government's campaign to improve the sex ratio in states such as Punjab and Haryana, which were the worst in 2001, had worked to some extent with a slight improvement in these states, but the stigma attached to a girl child appears to have spread.

As many as 27 states show a decline in the numbers of girl children, but were still better than Haryana and Punjab, which continue to have the lowest child sex ratio in the country. Jhajjar in Haryana had the worst child sex ratio for a district according to the census.

“Whatever measures have been put in the last 40 years had no impact..."
Yup. You could say that about a lot of Liberal Party policies here in Canada.

And some disappointment:

Premier Brad Wall thinks leadership debates should feature only himself and the NDP
"The premier doesn't think people want leadership debates to be bogged down with parties that can't "realistically" form government. He believes there should be at least one debate that features only himself and NDP leader Dwain Lingenfelter since their parties are the only ones likely to actually win the vote."
I so wanted to hear from the Yogic Flying Party.

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Leader Debates and Arctic Ice

As is my customary habit when surfing the net I land on sites and see interesting things but have no idea how I got there, so sometimes I have a wild and wooly collection of disparate topics that might be fun to write about. So you might be wondering why leader debates and arctic ice are in the same headline.

Well, this time I do remember how I got there. I just happen to think these are two subjects that are begging me to write about them.

Let me deal with the Arctic Ice one first. As we all know, except for a few die-hards on the left and a handful of vested interests, such as researchers seeking funding and politicians who have swallowed this nonsense and are now too timid to climb down, global warming hysteria is dead. The earth is cooling down and the Arctic ice is returning. Got there via Jay Currie's blog.

The first part, I'm sure, came simply from It's about Lizzy May's failed bid to be taken seriously.

Why Elizabeth May doesn't belong in election debates
"The television consortium’s decision to exclude Green Party Leader Elizabeth May from the election campaign debates is an accurate reflection of her party’s diminishing contribution to the national conversation and the debatable relevance of her debut appearance at the same table in 2008.

It may also be the best thing that could have happened to her at this early stage in the campaign; the Green Party of Canada was otherwise at great risk of spending it completely on the sidelines.

Until the networks’ decision prompted a predictable social media firestorm, many voters might have been forgiven for having forgotten the existence of the Green party and its feisty leader.

Since the last election, the party has had more presence in the polls than in the daily life of the nation."
Bingo!! When the Greens start talking sense and get a leader who understands this, maybe things will change. Time to take up a post in some declining Anglican or United Church somewhere, Lizzy. You're not cut out for politics, and our formerly mainline churches have been backing stupid causes for a long time. You'd fit right in.

And while I'm at it, let me say I hate what passes as political debates on television these days. The Party representatives, whether it's leaders or otherwise, are rude, interrupt, shout and scream at each other, while the moderators do nothing. That's why I don't watch them. (And that's going back a way, since I put my TV in storage about six years ago.)

BTW, the article about Elizabeth May has some interesting points about the history of leadership debates in Canada. Worth a read.

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Poor Libs II

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

If He Loses the Election...

...with a little practice I think he could explore another career as a lounge act:

In the meantime, I'm trying very hard to ignore any campaign nastiness that might be going on. It's so - you know - YAWN!!

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Breaking News This Morning!!!

UPDATED AND BUMPED: The folks over at I Hate the Media have been talking about this, a bit down in the dumps about America's ranking. It's also a topic of discussion in Australia, where they are in a state of disbelief hiding behind the claim that the results could not be independently verified. I have a solution for that. Send an army of female reporters out across the globe armed with measuring tape. They won't lie about it as some of their male members might. Hm. Hm. Hm.
Website lists penis sizes, India no. 116

Canada's rank is not mentioned in the article. However, a link is provided. But, alas, it lists countries alphabetically, not by length, but I won't let that stop me. Here's the ranking amongst the Anglo-Sphere:

Head of the pack ---- the Kiwis: 13.99 cm or 5.5 in
Next ---- Brits: 13.97 cm or 5.5 in
Third ---- Canuckistanis!!!! at: 13.92 cm or 5.5 in
Fourth ---- Aussies: 13.31 cm or 5.2 in
Fifth ---- Yanks: 12.90 cm or 5.1 in
Sixth ----- Paddies: 12.78 cm or 5.0 in

You can see that the metric system allows greater precision. A mere 0.07 cm separates first place from third. We might call that a nose, but maybe not.

And holy shit, it's true!!

Have a good day, and if you find yourself at the bottom of the list, don't worry about it, me lads. It's circumference that counts, not length.

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A Step In the Right Direction

American Islamic Leadership Coalition represents true diversity of American Muslims
"The American Islamic Leadership Coalition (AILC) publically announces its official national launch as a diverse coalition of American Muslim leaders. The coalition was officially formed in October 2010 and in just the past few weeks has garnered the support of a growing number of known Muslim leaders in North America. AILC has now gained critical mass and is stepping into the public arena in order to proclaim our support for the March 10, 2011 Hearings on “The Extent of Radicalization in the American Muslim Community and that Community’s Response”. Our coalition’s mission statement reads:

As American Muslim leaders, we come together to defend the US Constitution, uphold religious pluralism, protect American security and cherish genuine diversity in the practice of our faith.

AILC is foundationally dedicated to protecting the principles of liberty and freedom for every American citizen and especially for the diverse voices within American Muslim communities. Its leadership seeks to bring the ideas of modernity, reform, diversity, and genuine pluralism to Muslims across North America. AILC is a broad coalition of diverse American Muslim leaders and organizations who strongly identify with the organizations core mission and principals.. They come together in recognition of the need to demonstrate to America’s thought leaders the deep diversity which defines American Muslims and Islam in America.

M. Zuhdi Jasser, President of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy and a member of the coalition stated, “AILC is entering the national stage to give American Muslims and non-Muslims a much needed alternative to the existing organizations like CAIR, ISNA, MPAC, ICNA, and MAS which claim to speak for all American Muslims but do not represent many alternative points of view. Muslims are a diverse community and the majority of American Muslims do not tow the Islamist line of the Muslim Brotherhood legacy groups.”

To that end, AILC supports the efforts of Representative Peter King as a catalyst for a Muslim led open dialogue on the growing problem of radicalization within Muslim communities. The coalition believes that the hearings created a new opportunity for Muslims to redefine the fight against radicalization as a fight for the liberty narrative and against the anti- American Islamist narrative."
Now, maybe you can organize that million man march I've been waiting for for almost a decade. You know. The one where the placards, slogans and speeches are anti-Islamism and their slobbering leftist bedfellows. Down with CAIR! Death to the Mad Mullahs! Death to Ahmadinejad! No to Wahabis! No to al-Qaeda! No to dhiminitude! No to whining Muslims! Down with useful idiotry! That sort of thing.

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Why Do the Libs Want an Election Now?


First: They recognize the mistake they made in appointing and anointing the Harvard intellectual as leader of their party, but they don't want to admit that. After all, they wanted us to be wowed by having such a towering intellect as our fearless leader. They are, after all, Libs, and their natural position is to tower above us while we prostrate ourselves in front of them. And since they don't want to admit they made a mistake, they don't want to change their leader without the customary rejection of him at the polling booth. No siree. They want to be able to blame the voter. They're Libs, after all.

Second: Iggy knows he made a big mistake in accepting the coronation; he is uncomfortable in the role, and he is looking for the most honorable way out. And he too is looking for a way to pin it on the Canadian voter. It's better to make your exit after losing an election, than before it. Being able to blame it on someone else takes the spotlight off the self-serving hubris.

So. The Libs have decided to make the tax payer/voter take the rap and the bill so they can protect their asses, get it over with, to rise from the ashes another day, all the while blaming the honky, unwashed voter.

Thanks, Libs.

For what it's worth, I do think Iggy would be much more in his element locked away in an ivory tower and I don't think he was really leading the Party.  I've read some of his stuff and knew something about him, before he came back to Canada. If he had been leading the Party, his positions and by extension, those of the Libs would be somewhere else on the political spectrum - like on the spot where the Cons are now, and the Cons would be further to the right. And for this we are paying. Thanks Libs.

I hope the Canadian public sends you (the Party) a very clear message that you have not been working for us and you are, as a consequence, fired. I hope we send you into a corner where you can sulk and cry until we have undone the Liberal legacy and you have lost your arrogance.

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Monday, March 28, 2011

Boys Hanging Out

That's Kaden in the orange and blue stripes. He's a mere 14.5 lbs after only seven weeks of being on this planet, so don't mess with him. He was a big bruiser when he came into the world, too!

The scrawny little fellow in the yellow is Kaden's cousin, Logan. This was at Logan's house, so he's entitled to loaf about.

The pink blanket is a hand-me-down from Logan's big sister, Sydney.

And here's both big sisters, posing as Best Friends Forever. Cassidy, Kaden's big sister, is the one with the colourful shirt. She has her arm around Sydney, the senior member of that generation of the clan. Apparently they get along famously.

And eeewwwe, Logan, what did you do?

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Hard to Know....

...who to side with on this one:

Joe Biden's staff lock up journalist at Democrat fundraiser

I know that locking some big gun up in a fake jail and having people pay to spring him is a well worn fundraising gimmick, but I don't think that would work with a journalist. I mean who would part with their hard earned money to free a journalist?

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Sunday, March 27, 2011


News from Afghanistan. The one hundred and fifty-fifth Canadian serviceman has died. Together with two civilians, this brings the total Canadians killed in that underfunded, apparently forgotten war to 157. What a waste. What will it take to mobilize the West to actually fight for their civilization and their future, speaking of which:

h/t Fiery Kitty Kat

That's where the fight will begin, IMHO. The complacent, fifth column MSM. We must marginalize them and drive them into bankruptcy.

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'Kudos to Science' Morning

Seriously. These are some mighty interesting stories from the last two or three days.

First: Rare dinosaur found in Canada's oilsands
"The Canadian oil sands, a vast expanse of tar and sand being mined for crude oil, yielded treasure of another kind this week when an oil company worker unearthed a 110-million-year-old dinosaur fossil that wasn't supposed to be there.

The fossil is an ankylosaur, a plant-eating dinosaur with powerful limbs, armor plating and a club-like tail. Finding it in this region of northern Alberta was a surprise because millions of years ago the area was covered by water.

"We've never found a dinosaur in this location," Donald Henderson, a curator at Alberta's Royal Tyrrell Museum, which is devoted to dinosaurs, said on Friday. "Because the area was once a sea, most finds are invertebrates such as clams and ammonites."
Hmmmm. A dinosaur out of place. Puts me in mind of a certain political party and it's leader, or, should that be two political parties and their leaders.

Jurassic Jewel is a good name, though, especially for Mr. Laytoon, because I do like the guy. I just disagree with almost everything he and his party say and believe and can confidently say I will never vote for him/it. The Liberals, maybe, but they'll have to completely remake themselves, and that will take some doing and an appropriate amount of time spent wandering in the wilderness. Forty years should do it, which most likely means I won't be voting for them ever again 'cause I expect to be gone by then.

This dino wasn't the only one in the news this week. How 'bout this babe from Brazil! I'm kinda glad they died out before humans arrived, aren't you?  And speaking of humans arriving......

Second: Arrowheads Found in Texas Dial Back Arrival of Humans in America
"The new findings establish that the last major human migration, into the Americas, began earlier than once thought. And the discovery could change thinking about how people got here (by coastal migrations along shores and in boats) and how they adapted to the new environment in part by making improvements in toolmaking that led eventually to the technology associated with the Clovis culture.

Archaeologists and other scientists report in Friday’s issue of the journal Science that excavations show hunter-gatherers were living at the Buttermilk Creek site and making projectile points, blades, choppers and other tools from local chert for a long time, possibly as early as 15,500 years ago. More than 50 well-formed artifacts as well as hundreds of flakes and fragments of chipping debris were embedded in thick clay sediments immediately beneath typical Clovis material.

“This is the oldest credible archaeological site in North America,” Michael R. Waters, leader of the discovery team, said at a news teleconference."
"If the migrations began at earlier, pre-Clovis times, moreover, extensive glaciers probably closed off ice-free interior corridors for travel to the warmer south. Archaeologists said this lent credence to a fairly new idea in the speculative mix: perhaps the people came to the then really new New World by a coastal route, trooping along the shore and sometimes hugging land in small boats. This might account for the relatively swift movement of the migrants all the way to Peru and Chile."
"No one knows exactly who these migrating people were, scientists said. Genetic studies of ancient bones and later American Indians indicate their ancestors came from northeast Asia, possibly across the Bering land bridge at a time of low sea levels during the last ice age. But it has puzzled scientists that nothing like the Clovis technology has ever been found in Siberia."
"The new findings, the Waters group reported, “suggest that although the ultimate ancestors of Clovis originated from northeast Asia, important technological developments, including the invention of the Clovis fluted points, took place south of the North American continental ice sheets before 13,100 years ago from an ancestral pre-Clovis tool assemblage.”

Among other implications of the discoveries, the Texas archaeologists said, a pre-Clovis occupation of North America provided more time for people to settle in North America, colonize South America by more than 14,000 years ago, “develop the Clovis tool kit and create a base population through which Clovis technology could spread.”

The Texas archaeologists said the new dig site has produced the largest number of artifacts dating to the pre-Clovis period. The dates for the sediments bearing the stone tools were determined to range from 13,200 to 15,500 years ago."
There's more here about the death of the "Clovis first" theory and this new discovery.

Nobody is claiming, of course, that this in any way supports the notion that migration from the old world, as the source of human occupation of the Americas, is now defunct. It's simply that the "ice free corridor" theory is just about done for. Migration from Asia likely took place a bit earlier than the previous consensus would have it, but by only 2,500 years or so, and more likely via the coast line, which would now be inundated with water, since oceans have risen while the ice sheets, through which the "ice free corridor" supposedly ran, have melted and receded.

This will not be good news for the Indian Industry, especially those who like to claim that oral history is as good as evidence as archaeology is, or as the written record is, for that matter.  After all, 2,500 years adds another 100 generations through which origin stories will have had to have been passed along, all the while with each succeeding generation contributing new stories, new events, etc., that must be fitted into the narrative, somehow.   

Gee, you think origins stories can survive intact and accurate for 620 generations? That's 28 "great-great-greats" to add to the front of the word grandfather or grandmother. Can you imagine what a task it would be to keep that many generations of stories in your head with precision and accuracy? But I digress.

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Earth Hour

POST SCRIPT ANALYSIS inserted in orange text below:
Video update below.
========Original Starts Here in Black Type========== coming up and I'm making plans. So far, this is what I'm planning to do for Mother Earth, or Gaia, or whatever:

1) Turn the heat up (might have to open some windows to keep from sweltering, but that's okay); (Didn't do that since it takes an hour for the place to warm up or cool down.  Good thing, too, cause I was pooped after I got everything done.)
2) Turn all the lights on; (Yup. Even went to bed forgetting to turn off the lights at the top of my bookshelf.)
3) Recharge my cell phone, whether it needs it or not; (Yup. Done as planned.)
4) Turn on the oven and bake a cake, cause that requires using my electric mixer; (Yup. Done. Gingerbread. Haven't made that in ions.  Have to buy some apples today, and make some applesauce from scratch, as I recall applesauce goes really well with gingerbread, and making it from scratch has the added distinction of transferring the use of electricity from the food processing company that makes the canned stuff to my kitchen, so I can take personal responsibility at the same time as illustrating that going back to grandmother's day still means using electricity and/or fossil fuel.)
5) Bake some cookies, too (Yup. Ones with coconut in them to ensure I contributed to the "eat imports rather than local" cause.), and maybe a big batch of lasagna and/or chili (might as well do both, so I can have both the oven and a burner on); (Did the chili thing.  Got to freeze it today, too. More power consumption, just for the frivolous sake of preventing spoilage and possible food poisoning, silly me! Oh and the tomatoes and canned chili beans also contributed to the "eat imports" cause. How ungreen of me!!)
6) Do the laundry, and, if anything needs ironing, get at it right away; (Did that. No ironing required, so there's two small appliances - the iron and my blender - that were not pressed into use in the celebration of Earth Two Hours, a failure on my part, for sure, but I just couldn't think of what I could do with the blender during Earth Two Hours. If I had ice cream, I could have made a milk shake, I guess.  Oh well.)
7) Vacuum the floors that have carpets; (Yup. Not much to do, though, so I didn't really consume much electricity.)

..and just for the helluvit...

8) Turn on the hot water taps full bore so the boiler in the building will have to replace what I've consumed; (Didn't do that. My bad. But I did have a long leisurely shower after I was done in the kitchen, and did up the dishes in hot water, too.)
9) After all that work, I'll have to have a shower (see above), of course, and for sure, boil some water for a cup of tea. (Done. Hot tea after a busy stretch of work is so nice. Plus, it's another import, so that's good.)

Oh, and might just plug in the car, whether it's cold or not. (Did that earlier in the day, so it was plugged in for several hours. In fact it's still plugged in.)

That should be enough, probably more than enough, for only an hour, but I'd happily extend my celebration of Earth Hour as long as needed, even to Earth Hours. (All told, it took me close to two hours.  I wonder how long it would have taken without electricity. Drying those clothes would have been a time killer, and I'm not sure how I would get them ironed - or where I'd hang them to dry - a lot of retrofitting needed to go extreme green plus I don't have those old fashioned interchangeable irons with a wood stove to heat them on.)

I'm taking suggestions, if anyone can think of what else I could do. Every little bit helps, you know.  Gaia deserves it.

(I'm gonna leave this one on top and file a report the day after.)

(Picked this tip up over at SDA):

(This also came from SDA comments):

Earth Hour: Why I will leave my lights on

(Anyway, here ends my post-Earth Hour report.) 

In the meantime, enjoy this:

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Pollsters Going Mad With Election Fever

Everybody and his dog is expecting an election call. Pollsters are working overtime. Still, they can't come up with what the Libs and Dippers want. Here's yet another that puts the Cons ahead. But will it be a majority or business as usual?

I just hope those that thing this is a ridiculous waste of time (a position with which I have some considerable sympathy) will come out to vote. Our politicians need to hear from all of us and we, as citizens, need to know where in the spectrum our own leanings really fit. Elections with low turn outs are just as bad as the bias in our media. So, if there is an election in the offing, which we will know in a matter of days or even hours, no mater what your stripes, don't stay home on election day. Make your choice known, not just for the sake of our political class, but for all of us.

And please, don't throw away your vote just because there isn't a "None of the above" option on the ballot. You have to make an informed, responsible choice based on which party best fits your overall values and views on the issues that are most important to you. Some of us may end up happy. Some of us maybe not, but I can't imagine anyone being pleased with an outcome that results in no change at all, while at the same time the stats tell us that a large swath of eligible voters stayed away from the polling stations. Canadian apathy worries me - very much.

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Well, There Goes Another...

Big Sister...

...welcomes her baby brother home:

"Gama" likes this.

And another:

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Pilot Down

Near Benghazi:
"Behind him his F15 Strike Eagle was a burning wreck. He had parachuted into a field of sheep somewhere near Benghazi airbase and needed to escape - his fellow crew member had landed in another field nearby.

Raising his hands in the air he called out "OK, OK" to greet the crowd. But he need not have worried.

"I hugged him and said don't be scared we are your friends," said Younis Amruni, 27."
Go Libya!!

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Ya Gotta Go Listen... Ron Breakenridge's interview with Terry Glavin. Glavin is not too generous with the Obama administration, among other usual suspects, like Jack Layton - and the U.N.. It's at 3/21/2011 11:00:00 PM. He claims the Islamist are a marginal force in Libya.

Check out Glavin's blog, too. It's in my blogroll under Canadian Blogs.

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Contrast and Compare..

Well, That's Good

Thousands of Taliban lay down their weapons

Waiting for The One to take all the credit.

And so is this:

Gaddafi's air force 'no longer exists' as a fighting force'

"Their airforce no longer exists as a fighting force."
"...we can operate over his airspace with impunity"
"We have achieved in days what would have previously taken months or years."
Hip. Hip. Rah. Rah. Rule Britannia and all that.

And has anyone noticed Hamas seems to be in hurry up mode? But is it "quick, while no one's watching" or "we're doomed, better get while the getting's good"?

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More On the "Radiation" Hysteria

This one puts it all into perspective:

Japan’s radioactive fallout could have silver lining
"Low exposure to the Nagasaki atomic blast resulted in longer lifespans"
"The evidence from Japan’s populace — inadvertent guinea pigs in the largest radiation experiment ever, in the aftermath of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 — indicates that fears over radiation can be overblown.

Those who survived the immediate atomic blasts but were near Ground Zero died at a high rate from excess exposure to radiation. The tens of thousands more distant from Ground Zero, and who received lower exposures to radiation, did not die in droves. To the contrary, and surprisingly, they outlived their counterparts in the general population who received no exposure to radiation from the blasts.

These findings come from the Atomic Bomb Disease Institute of the Nagasaki University School of Medicine, which has been analyzing the medical records of survivors continuously since 1968. The voluminous records — based in part on the free twice-a-year medical examinations that 83,050 registered Nagasaki survivors received — provided the researchers with a database of 2.5 million examination items to mine. To determine how the survivors fared, the researchers compared the survivors with Japanese men and women of the same age who had not been exposed to radiation."
RTWT It's worth it.

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Ya Think!

Talk about the blatantly obvious headline:

Why the Arab League isn't taken seriously

But don't stop at the headline. The article provides a very nice summary of the Arab Parallel Universe.

And in the comments: "...question what does u and n stand for in united nations answer u = useless n = nonentity"

That's a keeper. Put it in your curio cabinet along with Zionist Entity.

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Another Poll...

...that's bad news for lefties.
"The latest information from the Rasmussen polling group shows some surprising and possibly disturbing news for Democrats. The people trust the GOP on 9 out of 10 key issues."
Hope and change!!

Al Gore must rue the day he "invented" the internet.

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Which of Her Eight...

...husbands does she most want to meet in the after life? And which direction will she have to go to find him?

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Love It!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Kamikaze Pilot - Libyan Style

Some believe it was a Libyan pilot who flew his plane into Ghadafi's bunker. That would be sweet, if true.

And here's a couple of videos from CNN. The first one is especially encouraging. It describes how Libyan rebels dealt with an American pilot whose plane came down inside Libya.

And two more from a Canadian perspective:

I especially like what the second guy says about the gap between Arab leaders and the Arab League on the one hand and the Arab street on the other. I've been harping about that forever. Until and unless Arab dictatorships allow some of the usual pieces of what we regard as democracy, we will never know what the Arab street really thinks.

Oh. And I didn't know that Canada was the driving force behind the doctrine of the Responsibility to Protect. Good on Canada, even if it is the U.N. and even if it was a Liberal Party member, Alan Rock, who pushed for it.

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More Stuff That Isn't Trudeau's Fault

The Polio epidemic. I remember getting little cups of grape flavoured juice which was supposed to be a polio vaccine. Funny thing is one of only two people I knew at the time who had polio was the town doctor's son. I suppose the fact that my mother trained as a nurse and worked in the local doctor's office may have had something to do with why I knew about the disease at such a young age.

The Old Age Security Pension was also from this era.  Of course, the amount an old person today can expect in the form of the Old Age Security Pension is a joke.  But there again, once established, a government service is damned near impossible to get rid ofThanks Jack.

Now, if we went back to means tests, that might be different, but Jack would never agree to that either. That'll teach ya, Harper. Never make deals with the devil. Jack knows he has a much better chance of getting into bed with the Liberals. You ain't sexy enough for him.

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The Fifties - Episodes four and five - The Suburbs and The Good Life

I didn't experience the suburb thing, being a farm brat, but a decade later I was prepared to view them as sterile soulless environments. There was even a song, which I liked, mocking the suburbs: Little Boxes

I hadn't yet experienced life as a grown-up when I first heard that song. I rushed headlong into a marriage before I tried living on my own, and that only delayed my brush with reality and maturity. But that was the seventies and times were very different.  In the fifties, marriage was still for life, and most people married someone whose outlook on life and cultural baggage was pretty much the same as theirs. As often as not, it was the high school sweetheart that you were hitched with. If a girl got pregnant, she and her lover got married, no single moms allowed, or, in some cases, she would be sent away to some mythical relative's place until the baby was born and given up for adoption.

Ya, and if you did get married you stuck it out "for the children". The husband was the boss and women knew their place. Conformity was the rule.

In The Suburbs episode, a number of things spoke to me.  Among those were the housing boom that was more or less created by the federal government's intervention, via the CMHC, an institution that is still with us, although, much altered since the fifties. Without it, in the fifties, young couples with two or three kids lived with their parents. I can imagine that arrangement would have been very stressful for all involved, but especially for the person who was living with the in-laws.

I'm not especially opposed to the CMHC, but on the other hand, its continued existence illustrates well that once a government bureaucracy is created, it's darned near impossible to dismantle it. It's also an example of government playing the "big brother" role long before the Trudeau era.

But to go on.  This bit about The Good Life, with everyone wanting and getting a TV, a dishwasher and a mortage? Well none of that happened in the home where I grew up. We lived in an old partially unfinished brick house. The upstairs was absolutely frigid in the winter. There was a coal fired furnace in the basement that wasn't strong enough to heat the whole house. Stepping out of bed in the morning onto a frigid floor was enough to make you want to stay in bed. I think that's where I acquired the habit of piling the blankets on and sleeping soundly breathing in cold air in a cold room.  I do not sleep well in a warm room. The house was cool even in the summer time, when temperatures outside were sometimes north of 100 degrees fahrenheit. That was before Trudeau introduced the metric system, some of which I still haven't mastered. All the old recipes I like still use the British system of measurements and translating into metric measurements is a pain in the butt. It was also before AGW fanatics got to explain extreme temperature variations as evidence of human induced climate fluctuations. But ya, we had some scorching summers and both wicked and mild winters, even in the 50s.

The house and the farm belonged to an old millionaire miser uncle of mine. My folks were renting it, and he wouldn't have any of this newfangled technology like electricity installed. It wasn't until he died that the property was willed to the family and not until then, the late 1950s or early 1960s, that we got power and running water. Prior to that, my mom used to have to wash piles of clothes, including never ending piles of cloth diapers, using an old gas powered wringer washing machine and water boiled on the stove top. Clothes were dried on the line outside, winter and summer.  In winter, of course, the clothes were hung out to freeze, not to dry. I remember mom  bringing in jeans hung on the line until they were frozen stiff and then hanging them up inside until they dried.  There was a cistern in the basement and a pump in the kitchen to bring the water up. Hot and cold running water was a luxury she had to wait until the sixties for.

Those were not the good old days for farm women. She slaved away in a huge garden in the summer, canning most of the vegetables, and buying case lots of fruit which she also canned.  The old hens, after they passed their egg laying stage, were butchered and canned, too.  Ever had to take the guts out of a chicken? Stinks to high heaven!!

The woman worked herself to the bone with little to no help from her four daughters. We were much more interested in helping dad out in the barn or pitching hay bales.  What a life my mother had!! Our one and only brother, on the other hand, rarely visited the barn.  There's a picture of him all dressed up in winter clothes heading across the yard in the direction of the barn. His sisters used to laugh that that was the only time he was ever seen heading to the barn. On another occasion, he convinced the teacher in the one-room country school that we attended that he was sick and needed to go home, which was just a short jaunt away. So home he went. And as soon as got home he told mom he wanted to go out to the barn to watch dad butcher a steer. Not very sick. Mom sent him back to school. LOL!!

The only opportunity we had to watch TV was on those Sundays when we drove to the next town to visit her parents. So my early exposure to television was watching Lassie on Sunday afternoons. When we finally did get electricity, we got a TV, with rabbit ears, but even then, the reception was really crappy in the summer time. We got to watch the Ed Sullivan Show and Bonanza on Sunday evenings. But, prior to that, winter evenings were spent playing board and card games as a family. So IMHO these new fangled things called electricity and TV actually were detrimental to family life. But believe me, I wouldn't want to go back to those days, even though there was more "quality time" with mom and dad. Coal oil lamps were especially fun. Every once in a while the filigree wick would catch on fire and mom or dad would leap up and run to put the fire out. It's a wonder the house didn't burn down.

Dad, of course, had a much easier life in the winters than mom did, cause there was still all that housework, which was never ending, and that was women's work. Plus, after all the garden produce had been canned, then it was right into the preparations for Christmas. Christmas cakes, cookies, cards, the annual letter to long out of touch friends, etc., had to be prepared. There was even an annual exchange of letters with some folks in The Netherlands who my father had befriended during WWII. The letters we got back had to be taken to a local Dutch family for translation.

I think she must have had some relief in the dead of winter, though. Four of the five children she bore were conceived in the dead of winter. My bother was born exactly nine months after New Year's Day, so we all know how they celebrated New Year's Eve that year.

Annual vacations? Never heard of them.  My parents took their first of only two vacations, other than the honeymoon, when I was in my teens. They took the train out to B.C. to visit my dad's brother. I was left at home in charge of my younger siblings. My older sister was already off at university. (The honeymoon, BTW, was spent in the great metropolis of Winnipeg!! I don't know what was so special about Winnipeg, other than it was a big city, and the home of the Winnipeg Grain Exchange, the Wheat Board, another "big brother knows best" agency that existed long before Trudeau, which is the main reason so many prairie farmers today have quit growing wheat, switching instead to crops that are not priced by the WGE, which they could sell to the buyer offering the best price.)

But anyway, imagine buying a house in the suburbs for only $10,500!! A typical bungalow in a moderate neighbourhood costs about $300,000 to $400,000 bucks now. And, ya, the houses do all look the same. I had a friend in Regina that lived in one of those neighbourhoods. Pretty boxes on the hillside. Pretty boxes made of ticky-tacky. They all looked just the same. The small town where my parents did most of their business at least had a range of housing from hovels to graceful old mansions.

And the cars. My mom and dad made a pact with one another when they got married. His part of the deal was that he had to attend church every Sunday.  She had to get a drivers' license. A fair trade off? Well, I can't imagine a farm wife not being able to drive a car and I never got the sense that dad was hostile to attending church every Sunday.  At least they were both Anglicans, which helped, because in those days "other religions" meant other brands of Christianity, and there was still some hostility towards the brands that weren't your own. Just one of those things that made me rather unreligious.

And btw, that little blond kid at the beginning and end of The Suburbs video is the spittin' image of my older sister. The younger one could have been me. And C.D. Howe? I don't remember him, but I remember hearing about him a decade or two later. I didn't know we was an American transplant. Imagine that. Yanks moving north for reasons other than evading war! Must have seen something in the Liberal Party that attracted him. The Liberal "Big Brother knows best" mentality perhaps?

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Baby Joseph Again

There are several stories this morning about this poor little tyke. I think it's especially informative to read the comments attached to those that allow them.  Look in particular at the Canadian media first and then go look at CNN and Fox News. I really don't see much of a difference. The way the left in Canada goes on about Faux News, you'd expect there to be a rather stark difference between Fox and Sun, on the one hand, and the Globe and Mail and CNN on the other. But I don't see much. There are a variety of perspectives at each site, and a surprising number of the Fox News and Sun commentators are of the same mind as Globe and Mail and CNN readers.

In any case, I would not want to have to walk in the parents' shoes and it's only because I am not facing their dilemma that I can say I think having Baby Joseph all tied up with tubes and artificial life support is no more an expression of God's will than removing them is. Without human intervention, this baby would be dead by now.

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Monday, March 21, 2011

The Fifties - Episodes Two and Three

Episode two - Spies

Episode three - The Bomb

Episode two, Spies, is an eye opener for me, and would be, I suspect, for many Cold War era Canuckistani brats who grew up in the fifties, and as for The Bomb, well, the nuclear arms race defined a whole generation, didn't it.

I was blissfully unaware of the Soviet Union in the fifties, and the whole spy versus spy thing as lampooned in Mad Magazine a decade later, but I do remember the Soviet supremacy in space, sputnik, etc. that ushered in the race to the moon which culminated in the following decade. Do you remember Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space? Or, Laika, the first dog in space? Or monkeys in space? (That was long before "pigs in space".)  Or this cool music? I do.

And who knew there was a peace movement in Canada in the 1950s infiltrated by alleged commies? Seems some of these things have been with us for a very long time.

And Margaret Trudeau's father was a Canadian spy sent on a mission to the Soviet Union?!?! Wow!!

As for the bomb, there were no drills involving hiding under the desk in my school. I guess being out in the sticks in the middle of nowhere, must have had an ameliorating affect. Plus, we didn't have television or even electricity. Made a big difference apparently. Kinda shows the capacity of television to influence public sentiment. But there's more on that in a later episode. And mass evacuation drills in major Canadian cities?  Survival plans?? I did not know!!

I did know about the Diefenbunker, though, but I'm sure that was much later that I became aware of its existence. I've always wondered why saving the lives of politicians would be so beneficial if much of the rest of the population was wiped out?

And ironically, at the end of the fifties, shortly after Sputnik, Canada reduced its defense budget to 1/3 of what it had been prior to Sputnik. That's something else I did not know. I had always blamed the Liberals for the decline of our spending on the military, but apparently it began under Diefenbaker. How could we compete with the big guys? Was Sputnik the origin of our longstanding sore spot with the US over our ponying up (or not ponying up) on missile defense of North America? The irony is rich, ain't it. That's one for the Soviets.

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The Fifties - Episode One - The Young

The Young.

Elvis. Jiving in the girls' cloak room to Elvis records supplied by the "big girls". Funny. You're supposed to remember the lessons in readin', writin' and 'rithmetic, but those recesses and noon hours spent rockin' and rollin' in the girls cloak room were highlights for me. In fact, most of my memories from grade school time, were of what took place at recess and over the lunch hour.

And I had no idea comics were outlawed!! How comical that is now! And kids under 18 weren't allowed into certain movies! In the town where my farming folks did their business, there was a pool hall - another scandalous thing. For a teenaged boy to be caught in the pool hall was a big faux pas. Of course, that only served to make the pool hall like any other piece of forbidden fruit. Somehow, though, I never did see the inside of the establishment. This is likely because the only time I would be in town I was with my parents, my mother mostly, tagging along as she went from store to store stocking up on necessities and what not.

And school dress codes? They were still in effect years later when I was in high school. I remember one guy was sent home because he didn't have a shirt with a collar under his sweatshirt, and that was mid-1960s. I would imagine it only got worse as the fifties and sixties kids got older. Hippies!! Long hair!! Patched blue jeans!! Or worse, jeans with holes!!! Shriek!! No wonder my parents lamented those times.

I don't remember anyone wearing leather jackets, either, but I suspect it was more because they couldn't afford them. I did not know that they too were considered a sign of youthful depravity. LOL!!

Even not so long ago, one would sometimes hear about attempts to censor certain materials from entering the country or being sold to anyone, so I guess the propensity remained with us long after the fifties. It's just the content of what is considered scandalous and dangerous changed over time. But alas, with so much deliverable over the net now, such attempts to censor are hopelessly forlorn. Vice always wins. And frankly, I think the laid back, to each his own attitude is far better for society than the overly stringent big brother knows best mentality run amok.

And having to have parliament approve a divorce!! Now, tell me Trudeau's "the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nations" idea was not a giant leap forward. What a colossal waste of parliament's time!!

Sure, divorce rates skyrocketed after no-fault divorce became legal, but those rates have fallen again, and that, I suspect, is because couples are much wiser today in the ways of forming and keeping healthy relationships, which is a heck of a lot better than simply condemning people to a lifetime of misery and pain. Anyway, glad that part of the fifties is long gone. Thanks, Pierre!

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It's All About...

A Series About the Fifties In Canada

Ah, yes. The decade of my childhood. I was four months and three days old when the fifties began, so of course I don't remember everything from the fifties, but this series, from CPAC, sure hits home. I remember some of the stuff in the series clearly, while other parts just evoke a vague feeling of recognition, or a "so that's where it came from" sort of moment.

I especially like the segments that deal with the imposition of policies and institutions that define Canada (ie. our socialist leanings). I knew this part of our national character was, in part at least, not really that old, and consequently, could be rolled back.  I also knew that we shouldn't lay it all at the feet of Pierre Elliot Trudeau, as some of my fellow righties are prone to doing, since much of it was implemented in the 1950s and early 60s, long before he became Prime Minister, and was inspired by movements that were well underway even prior to WWII. But my summary of that will come in a subsequent post.

So if you're a history buff, and you think you know what the fifties were all about, watch this series.  It will either flesh things out for you, or set the record straight. I wish we could get some of this back, but on the other hand, I thank God that era is over.

In this post, I'll give you an intro with this video (not on CPAC) and then deal with the remaining parts of the series in subsequent posts. So, if, after watching this video, you think you'd like to see more, stay tuned. I'm working on the subsequent posts right now (or just go to CPAC and watch the whole series yourself, and miss my brilliant analysis and commentary):

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I Told Ya So!

Here. Here. Here and here.

But just in case you don't believe me, then tell me why this is so:

Conservatives 39, Liberals 28 in latest poll

However, I am too chickenshit to declare the post-WWII capital L Liberal era over. I'll just keep on hoping until I see them wandering in the wilderness for the next 40 years, too stupid to figure out what hit them, while we dismantle the damage they have done.

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Ghadafi's Compound Demolished!

One of the Most Crystal Clear Examples...

...of how CBC spins and twists.

"looses his capacity to enforce his will" equals "regime change"

Of course, "regime change" is so Bush and so unbeholden to the United Nations.

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More On the Climate Change = Earthquake Equation

Did 'climate change' cause the Japanese earthquake?
" one town alone as many as 10,000 people may have been killed by the earthquake and the tsunami. Compare and contrast this with the two fatalities so far in Japanese nuclear plants. Perhaps this figure will rise but until it does, the coverage given to what might possibly happen in Japan’s nuclear plants – as opposed to the far greater and very real and present disasters happening elsewhere in the country – seems irresponsible, misleading overdone."
" the last decade the wind farm industry, it turns out, has killed far more people for far less electricity produced than the nuclear industry

Nuclear fatalities in the last ten years: 7

Wind farm fatalities in the last ten years: 44.

In those ten years nuclear provided thirty times the energy of wind. This means in the last decade, nuclear has been around 200 times safer than wind on an energy produced/accidents basis."
Related: What Now for Nuclear Power posted at 3/17/2011 10:03:00 PM and The Politics of Nuclear Power posted at 3/18/2011 10:57:00 PM.

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Sunday, March 20, 2011

Poor Libs

They just can't win!

And it's not for lack of trying or plenty of opportunity handed to them on a silver platter. There's gotta be something else going on here.

Maybe we're just fed up with gutter politics.  I have other theories, too, but they deserve posts of their own.  Hint.  Look at what's happening in the world right now, especially just to the south of us.

And almost in the same breath, look what Ignatieff is doing.  This is exactly what we're sick and tired of Iggy.  This is neither leadership nor statesmanship.  Staid old boring Stephen Harper is the more inspiring choice, simply because he's not wallowing in the mud.  It's not because of anything he's doing, per se. But it is because of what you are doing.

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Radiation Dosages in Perspective

I'm doomed. I grew up in a brick house. And I've eaten waaaaaay too many bananas.  On the other hand, maybe I can use this as an excuse to avoid my next mammogram.


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Saturday, March 19, 2011

More Countries

Spain, Norway and The Netherlands are in and on their way.

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I'm Happy to Oblige

UPDATE: Conflicting reports about whether this was one of his planes.
In furtherance of the goal of humiliating and shining a light on the buffoon of Tripoli, here's a video of one of his planes going down over Benghazi.

Related: Just watching a live press conference with Libyan government officials. It puts me in mind of Baghdad Bob: "The U.N. resolution is invalid, but nevertheless we will comply."

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Want Live, Continuous Reporting...

...of the fight in Libya, try:


Al Jazeera

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Hopefully This Headline Will Read...

UPDATE: ...or Vive la France!
Gadhafi ‘will regret’ International forces coming to Libya instead, in very short order.
"Moammar Gadhafi took advantage of international indecision to attack the heart of the five-week-old uprising on Saturday, sending troops, artillery and warplanes to swarm the first city seized by the rebels. Crashing shells shook buildings, and the sounds of battle drew closer to Benghazi's centre.

“Where is France, where is NATO?” cried a 50-year-old woman in Benghazi. “It's too late.”

Leaders from the Arab world, the United States and other Western powers are holding urgent talks in Paris over possible military action, and France's ambassador to the United Nations, Gerard Araud, told BBC Newsnight that he expected military action to begin within hours of the meeting. Mr. Gadafhi warned international forces: “You will regret it if you dare to intervene in our country.”
"In a joint statement to Mr. Gadhafi late Friday, the United States, Britain and France – backed by unspecified Arab countries – called on Mr. Gadhafi to end his troops' advance toward Benghazi and pull them out of the cities of Misrata, Ajdabiya and Zawiya. It also called for the restoration of water, electricity and gas services in all areas. It said Libyans must be able to receive humanitarian aid or the “international community will make him suffer the consequences” with military action."
In the meantime, Ghadafi is pulling a Saddam Hussein:
"Misrata, Libya's third-largest city and the last held by rebels in the west, came under sustained assault well after the cease-fire announcement, according to rebels and a doctor there. The doctor, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he feared reprisals, said Mr. Gadhafi's snipers were on rooftops and his forces were searching homes for rebels.

“The shelling is continuing, and they are using flashlights to perform surgery. We don't have anesthetic to put our patients down,” said the doctor, who counted 25 deaths since Friday morning."
Faster, please.

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Friday, March 18, 2011

First Picture!

Whaaaat? Whaat happened?? Where am I?

World. Meet Logan. Logan. Meet the world.

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The Global Warming Theory...

has some competition:

Did tonight's super moon cause Japan's tsunami?

I thought the earthquake did it. Truth be told, this one has some logic to it.

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Every Once In a While... takes a giant leap forward - er - backward...

.xxx adult entertainment domain approved by internet regulators


Okay. I Rise to the Occasion...

...although I'm certain this is not quite what you had in mind. But to give you hope as you grow old - Arnie:

Don't know what I'll do next year. Maybe I'll play fair.

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Interesting Survey About Canadians...

...and their politicians:

Canadians don’t love politicians; they tolerate them, poll shows
"Canadians don’t find Prime Minister Stephen Harper as scary as they once did and are even starting to slightly warm up to the Liberals..."
Amazing, isn't it!!
"Under the heading of “acceptance,” the Conservatives were at 27 per cent in 2007, but have dropped to 23 per cent since then. The Liberals clocked in at 19 per cent four years ago and have fallen even further to 14 per cent. The NDP is holding solid at 21 per cent.

In 2007, 18 per cent of Canadians were “disgusted” with the Conservatives, and that number has climbed slightly to 22 per cent. The 30 per cent that felt that way about the Grits in 2007 has fallen off to 20 per cent. About 15 per cent were turned off by the NDP, but now it’s 9 per cent.

Under the heading of “fear,” 18 per cent of those polled back in 2007 said they were afraid of what Harper stood for, but that’s dipped to 13 per cent. Only 11 per cent said they were afraid of then Liberal leader Stéphane Dion. But the poll indicates he struck fear into the hearts of fewer Canadians than Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff does today at 15 per cent. Few Canadians are afraid of NDP Leader Jack Layton."
Hehehehehe. Poor Jack. Since his party is always in third place, we'll never get to hate or love him with a passion.
"Three per cent of those surveyed said they “love” Harper, up from 2 per cent in 2007, while only 1 per cent showed this level of affection for Ignatieff. One-fifth of Canucks profess their love for Layton, up from 4 per cent in 2007. The outcome was roughly the same for the parties."
Truth be told, I like the guy on a personal level, as much as you can like a politician, that is. It's just that his Party is so retro. Who wants to go back to that!!

Funny. They appear to have left the Bloc out.

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Things Have Changed...

...since I was young. My daughter just gave birth and used her BlackBerry to tell us all on Facebook. At least I think that's what this means:
which I'm pretty sure means "It's a boy!!"

His name is Logan. That's all I know, so far.


Ah, Don'tcha Just Love Our...


Threatening tweets shake McGill campus
"A McGill University student is under investigation by police after he allegedly made death threats using his Twitter account.

The student, Haaris Khan, was watching a documentary screened by the Conservative Party’s campus arm, Conservative McGill, when he appeared to become increasingly agitated and expressed himself on Twitter using his BlackBerry.

“I’ve infiltrated a Zionist meeting. I feel like I’m at a Satanist ritual,” he allegedly wrote at the March 8th screening.

“I want to shoot everyone in this room,” another tweet said. “Never been this angry.”

The tweets call the documentary a “Zionist/Conservative propaganda film” and the gathering, which attracted about 20 students, “a secret Zionist convention.”

Then: “I should have brought an M16.”

A spokesperson for the Montreal Police Service said the force is still investigating. It’s not clear what charges could be laid, if any. “We take the case very seriously,” the spokesperson said. “We don’t go with half-measures on this.”

Montreal has had several school-related shootings, most recently in 2006 at Dawson College.

McGill University refers all matters involving alarming behaviour to a threat assessment team and a disciplinary officer, said Morton Mendelson, deputy provost of student life and learning.

“We have come to the conclusion that the messages don’t constitute a threat to the community,” Mendelson said.
"The film, Indoctrinate U, explores liberal bias and political correctness on American campuses."
"Members of the campus club didn’t find out about the tweets until two days after the screening. They promptly called campus security.

Association board member Alexandre Meterissian said he’s disappointed with McGill’s response. “The university hasn’t taken it seriously,” the second-year political science student said.

Meterissian said Khan continued tweeting the following day, writing: “The jihad begins today.”

Khan’s Twitter feed, which overlays pictures of superhero Captain Canuck, has since been reset to private. Khan could not be reached for comment.

However, in an interview Monday with the McGill Tribune, a student newspaper that first reported the story, Khan apologized and said his tweets had been taken out of context."
"He professed not to own any weapons and said he has never fired a gun. He also said he’s not particularly religious and that his sister-in-law is Jewish.

“I don’t have a problem with Jews,” he added."
Sure. We believe you.

Wanna watch IndoctrinateU for yourself? Go here. And take my word for it. This applies equally to American and Canadian campuses.

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Little By Little

...political correctness is being beaten back:

EU court rules crucifixes can stay in Italian schools

But can someone tell me why this got to be taken to an EU court? Shouldn't that decision have been Italy's to make? Period. Full stop!

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Well That's a First!

Looking through my sitemeter hits just now and came across one where the person at the other end had used the search terms "i had gay sex with my dad". Oooookay! To each his own, but why did my blog turn up?

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Radiation Dispersal Update

Canadian detectors will track radioactive particles from Japan
"A forecast from a United Nations agency suggests super sensitive detectors on the West Coast of Canada and the U.S. may soon be picking up radioactive particles from Japan's crippled nuclear reactors.

Experts say the amounts will be so minuscule they'd pose no health risk, but the monitors could help show how the radiation disperses around the planet in coming days and weeks.

Maps generated by a UN agency that monitors for clandestine nuclear tests show the plume of radiation wafting across the Pacific, hitting the Aleutian Islands before sweeping down toward the West Coast by the weekend."
Can we please stop the hysteria now?

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See. I Told Ya.

Grandchild # 4

...on its way - four days early. That's not too bad.

There'll be new little Canuckistani on the planet in just a few hours, if all goes well.

I won't be sleeping tonight, not much anyway.

I'm all wound up like a nervous first-time father! LOL!!


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Took a Little Longer Than Expected....

Well Halellujah!!

U.N. council approves no-fly zone over Libya
"The Russian and Chinese envoys said the resolution's backers had failed to answer questions about how the no-fly zone would work and what the rules of engagement would be.

Apart from the military measures, the resolution also expands sanctions against Gaddafi and his inner circle imposed in a February 26 Security Council resolution.

Among those whose assets the resolution orders frozen are the Libyan National Oil Corp. and the central bank, which the resolution said were "under control of (Gaddafi) and his family" and a "potential source of funding for his regime."

The resolution bans all flights over Libya except for humanitarian flights.

It allows states that have notified the United Nations and Arab League "to protect civilians and civilian populated areas under threat of attack in (Libya), while excluding a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory.""
Better late than never, I guess, but I have a feeling this one may be no better than most U.N. resolutions. Nice on paper, but otherwise ignorable. The Arab Parallel Universe will see to that.

More details, here, such as this:
"“All necessary measures” were approved to enforce a no-fly zone over Libya and protect the civilian population. That amounts to a mandate for bombing runs to destroy tanks and artillery bearing down on the rebel-held cities of Benghazi and Tobruk.

U.S., French and British warplanes were expected to launch initial combat patrols overnight, operating from bases in Cyprus, Sicily and – perhaps – Egypt. Canada will send six CF-18s, last in action in 1999 as they bombed Serb positions to protect the Albanians of Kosovo."
"There were 10 votes in favour, no votes against, and five abstentions, including veto-wielding China and Russia as well as Brazil, Germany and India."
And this:
"The resolution demanded an “immediate ceasefire,” but the most important language authorized nations “to take all necessary measures … to protect civilians … and civilian populated areas … including Benghazi.”"
And here's the best part:
"Col. Gadhafi seems to relish the looming military confrontation. “Any foreign military act against Libya will expose all air and maritime traffic in the Mediterranean Sea to danger and civilian and military facilities will become targets of Libya’s counterattack,” he warned.

But the Libyan air force is aging, ill-maintained and no match for modern warplanes. The last time Col. Gadhafi sent a pair of his fighters against a U.S. naval battle group – in 1986 – they were shot down before even coming close to the U.S. warplanes."
I love it when frightened dictators go all bluster and bravado. Everyone can see he's pissin' his pants.

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No Shit, Sherlock!


A day late and a dollar short, me thinks. Anyway, I don't think it will hurt.

US pushing for air strikes, no-fly zone in Libya

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Global Hysteria?

Judging by the number of hits I've been getting over the last couple of days, most of them landing on this entry, it would seem that the entire world is worried about radiation contamination from the Japanese reactor.

I'm no expert in nuclear fuel, but I do have little use for hysterical reactions to things nuclear. It seems to me the deaths and long-term health consequences resulting from exposure to radiation cause considerably more panic than death and long-term health consequences resulting from much more mundane, more common and wide spread hazards, such as driving from point "A" to point "B". And there are a lot more of the later.

I'm not losing any sleep over it, but then again, I don't live in Japan, or Thailand, or Russia, Hong Kong or Australia, like some of my visitors do. But sheesh, people from places like Coatia, Romania, France, the Czech Republic, Poland, Sweden and Jonesboro, Georgia are worried. (Howdy, Georgia! I'd never heard of Jonesboro before.  What are the chances you've ever heard of Saskatchewan before?)

Or maybe it's just curiosity.

In any case, here's some (hopefully reliable) articles about the issue at hand from a variety of perspectives:

Calm down. Japan's nuclear crisis poses no risk to B.C.
"No, there isn't a risk of a nuclear explosion. This is an energy plant, not a runaway weapon. Speaking of which, atmospheric nuclear tests by the United States, Soviet Union, United Kingdom, France and China contributed radioactive material to the atmosphere equivalent to 29,000 Hiroshima-sized atomic bombs. Test explosions took place at eight sites in the Pacific, many of them much closer to us than Japan is."
"No, it's nowhere near as serious as the 1986 disaster at Chernobyl which ranked as a seven on the seriousness scale and was the world's worst nuclear accident to date. Chernobyl, in what is now Ukraine, released a major radioactive plume across some of the most densely populated regions of Europe. The IAEA says it's highly unlikely Fukushima will become another Chernobyl."
Surgeon general clarifies position on potassium iodide as protection against nuclear radiation
"Her comments came as state and local health officials attempted to quell Californians' fears after reports of potassium iodide shortages at pharmacies and vitamin stores. Dr. Jonathan E. Fielding, Los Angeles County’s public health chief, issued warnings against taking potassium iodide.
"We want to urge you not to take potassium iodide unnecessarily," Fielding said, noting that some people may be allergic and suffer side effects including intestinal upset, nausea and rashes.

"It's definitely not recommended as a precautionary medication," he said."
Nuclear radiation - You need to know about it (Contains scare video about Chernobyl)
"Radiation can damage cells and the DNA inside them through its ionizing effect. This effect happens when a high-energy carrying particle or photon removes an electron within an atom’s nucleus from its orbit, thereby changing the properties of the atom. If enough ionization occurs DNA, cell and tissue damage result.

A common example is sunburn, caused by its ultraviolet light. Mutations can result, such as melanoma and other cancers. Of course ionizing effects from nuclear radiation from radioactive materials can do the same thing."
"Nuclear radiation has a number of beneficial uses, including:

* Medicinal, such as radio therapy for cancers and X-rays
* Dating purposes (no, this not where you nuke a ‘toxic’ date)
* Level indicators and thickness gauges
* In smoke detectors and
* In tracing locations of gas or liquid leaks or
* Tracing locations of malfunctioning in the body such as a blocked kidney
* Sterilisation of medical instruments or bacteria or moulds in foods

These, and other such applications,involve low levels of radioactive compounds. However repeated exposure to X-rays is hazardous to your health because of the ionising effects of nuclear radiation."
"All radioactive substances decay over time. Some take fractions of seconds, others many thousands of years.

In theory all radio active substances stay slightly radio active and are never completely inert. That’s why it is more appropriate to use the ‘half-life’ of a radio active substance to indicate its level of radio activity. Its half life is the time it takes for its radio activity to fall by half.

For example, if the radioactivity of a radioactive substance fell by half every two years, its half life would be two years. You notice that it takes much longer for its radio activity to fall to very low levels and that after six years it would have dropped to one-eight of its radio activity.

At every step of its decay the radio active substance transforms into another substance as the composition of the nuclei in its atoms changes.

The half-life of uranium 238 is 4.5 billion years. That means that within that time half of the remaining uranium 238 will have decayed."
"Given that there are some 440 nuclear reactors worldwide you’d expect the risk of radiation to be high. However, the only major nuclear accident that saw radiation escape over large areas has to date been Chernobyl.

We hope the 2011 Japanese nuclear situation will not be added.

A limited number of people died in the Chernobyl event and there are various estimates of how many people will be affected over the long term. It should be pointed out that the Chernobyl plant lacked a protective housing, unlike almost all other nuclear reactors and that the shut-down procedures followed were contra-indicated."
Each of the six articles below are detailed, balanced presentations of varying lengths on medical facts. There is no screeching hysteria nor any "nothing to see here folks" kind of denial. Some are quite technical.

Ionizing radiation - Biological effects

Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation

Nuclear Radiation and Health Effects

Health risks of radiation depend on dose, duration, kind of exposure

Radiation Effects on Humans and Effects of Radiation Levels on Human Body

Assessing the disaster's [Chernobyl] effects on human health
"UNSCEAR has conducted 20 years of detailed scientific and epidemiological research on the effects of the Chernobyl accident. Apart from the 57 direct deaths in the accident itself, UNSCEAR originally predicted up to 4,000 additional cancer cases due to the accident. However, the latest UNSCEAR reports suggest that these estimates were overstated. In addition, the IAEA states that there has been no increase in the rate of birth defects or abnormalities, or solid cancers (such as lung cancer) corroborating UNSCEAR's assessments."
Three Mile Island - 25 Years Later
"Impact of the Three Mile Island Disaster

A combination of equipment failure, human error, and bad luck, the nuclear accident at Three Mile Island stunned the nation and permanently changed the nuclear industry in America. Even though it led to no immediate deaths or injuries to plant workers or members of the nearby community, the TMI accident had a devastating impact on the nuclear power industry - the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has not reviewed an application to build a new nuclear power plant in the United States since. It also brought about sweeping changes involving emergency response planning, reactor operator training, human factors engineering, radiation protection, and many other areas of nuclear power plant operations.

Health Effects of Three Mile Island

Various studies on health effects, including a 2002 study conducted by the University of Pittsburgh, have determined the average radiation dose to individuals near Three Mile Island at the time of the meltdown was about 1 millirem - much less than the average, annual, natural background dose for residents of the central Pennsylvania region. Twenty-five years later, there has been no significant rise in cancer deaths among residents living near the Three Mile Island site. A new analysis of health statistics in the region conducted by the Radiation and Public Health Project has, however, found that death rates for infants, children, and the elderly soared in the first two years after the Three Mile Island accident in Dauphin and surrounding counties."
Scientists Project Path of Radiation Plume
"Health and nuclear experts emphasize that radiation in the plume will be diluted as it travels and, at worst, would have extremely minor health consequences in the United States, even if hints of it are ultimately detectable. In a similar way, radiation from the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 spread around the globe and reached the West Coast of the United States in 10 days, its levels measurable but minuscule."
"Health and nuclear experts emphasize that radiation in the plume will be diluted as it travels and, at worst, would have extremely minor health consequences in the United States, even if hints of it are ultimately detectable. In a similar way, radiation from the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 spread around the globe and reached the West Coast of the United States in 10 days, its levels measurable but minuscule."
Radiation poses only slight risk to nervous Tokyo: experts
"Watching the shifting wind direction from the nuclear plants to the city is important to assess potential radiation exposure, the United Nations weather agency said. Winds were expected over the Pacific in coming days, which could lessen levels in Tokyo. Meteorologists said it takes about six days to reach North America, and by then radiation at current levels would have largely dissipated.


For cancer risks to be elevated, exposure would have to exceed 100 millisieverts in a year, experts say. To be lethal, the blast of radiation would have to top 5,000 millisieverts, delivered in just minutes or hours.

Measurements at the damaged plants are well below lethal at 400 millisieverts. That means unprotected workers may have been exposed to about four times the level deemed to increase the risk for cancer, or 20 times the annual exposure for some nuclear-industry employees and uranium miners.

"There are 40 people or so that are in the process of risking their lives trying to pump sea water into these plants. They are real heroes. If they get the plants full of sea water, then things will cool down and we'll be OK," Kemper said."

Medical studies are inconclusive about the effects of low-level exposure. Most studies have looked at the cancer risk from high levels. It is much more difficult to tease out the increased risk of cancer from low-level radiation exposure from smoking and other lifestyle factors that are known to increase a person's cancer risk, scientists say.

Exposure to heavier doses of radiation over a short period causes burns or radiation sickness, triggering nausea, weakness, hair loss, skin burns and reduced organ function. A large exposure can cause premature aging or death.

The U.S. military took new steps to safeguard its personnel from radiation on Tuesday, moving arriving warships to safer waters and cautioning some forces to limit outdoor activity.

For residents of Tokyo, experts said people could take similar precautions, staying inside as much as possible.

"The reason you stay inside is you don't want to get it on your body. The radiation is only serious if you ingest it -- assuming it is low level," Kirby Kemper, a nuclear physics professor at Florida State University, said in a telephone interview.

"The ultimate concern is radiation has the ability to cause cancer. In very high doses, it can have immediate effects," said Peter Caracappa, a nuclear engineering professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York."
Radioactive plume to hit US
"A RADIOACTIVE plume spreading from stricken nuclear reactors in Japan could hit southern California on Saturday, according to a United Nations forecast - however there is expected to be little health risk."
Fukushima triggers new look at mega-quake threat
"Twenty percent of the 440 commercial reactors in operation around the globe are located in areas "of significant seismic activity," according to the World Nuclear Association (WNA), an industry group.

Some of the 62 additional reactors under construction are also in quake-prone zones, along with many of the nearly 500 units on order or proposed, especially in fast-developing countries."
I'm sure there will be lessons learned from this latest nuclear power plant meltdown scare, but, all told, I am very happy I don't live in Taiwan or Vladivostok, and certainly not Tokyo, or, God forbid, Pyongyang. All those folks will be very happy the radioactive clouds are headed east, rather than west.

And by the way, the bit about the half-life of uranium 238? That's almost as old as the earth itself. Our civilization ain't gonna last that long. Neither are we humans, if all past extinctions are any indication. That fact alone makes me wonder why we're fooling around with this substance.

PS: PJTV's Trifecta guys sum it all up.

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