Saturday, 2 May 2015
First, it is amazing to me that anyone would be elected to public office and so instantly start sucking on the public teat as urgently and as vigorously as she did. Yes, I guess it happens, especially in entitled Conservative circles, and especially in
Further, Cusanelli’s sense of entitlement must go back to her family and her upbringing. It may be that she coveted the Tories and the lifetime pension it brings and is about to bring her, and it may be that her good family just kept supporting her. Good. But if I just got a new job, and I told my family, “hey, folks, we’re all going to
For shame, for shame.
Thursday, 16 April 2015
April 2015 – Well, baseball is upon us again; “hope springs eternal” has given way almost already to “the boys of summer.”
He probably would have won about 360 (ok well, 320-325) with the Cardinals or Dodgers, say. Numbers kids doing graduate theses should study Jenkins’s numbers to see what a perfect, durable, 4-pitch pitcher he was. But caution: in the search for someone more metrical than him, they might never finish their dissertations.
It’s crucial to remember, here, that the Harper Conservatives have cut the NFB and will probably cut it again, within weeks of this post; the erasure of Canadian history, and its replacement with “values” (code: “mine: not yours”) is just one more reason for this post. When slaves were transported to North America, one of the first things slavebuyers did was try to break those slaves down, according to language, so that slaves from
2) Composure—about 22:00 and throughout the documentary, you see the reserved and guarded and mature nature of the black ballplayers, Fergie with Billy Williams in probably a hotel room. Players like Fergie and Billy and Cito Gaston came up through times when they had to stay at different hotels, eat in different restaurants, etc. That no doubt instilled a certain guardedness, maybe even a “secret code,” like the one Harper is trying to instill in us now—a sense that we’re not all humans, but that others are somehow less human than us. Anyway, it will strike anyone who watches Donald Brittain’s documentary just how much fun and yakkety-yak and haw-haw the white guys are having, while the black guys are all pretty business, at least off the field—they’ve got much more on the line, and that’s largely counter to any stereotypes, then or now. (If anyone wants to argue re: Ernie Banks, who we see briefly, then ok, let’s talk.) I could be wrong about this, but only a bit. You tell me. It’s a blog.
3) Expos—former champions, 1994. Jarry Park. 34:40 As the Cubs were (of course) collapsing, Ron Santo made it to first base on a walk. The following is his conversation with Ron Fairly, a man who had a heck of a career and played a heck of a lot of ball in
Santo: I don’t git it.
Santo: Damn right it is. Bad. Tough to hit, tough to field, tough to do everything.
--It’s a nice town, though.
Fairly: Oh yeah.
Thursday, 9 April 2015
No-one seems to be all that preoccupied by the fact that a guy who reported on politicians for decades so desperately wanted to be an unelected one. I submit that that is a problem.
Key thing to remember about the Duffster, lest we all lose sight of it, is that the Duffster was a Hill veteran for years. He knew the ins ands outs, and the in-and-outs. He angled like an obsessed man for his appointment, even launching lawsuits against those he thought hurt his entitlement opportunities (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_Duffy). Now, you could say, well, Mike was just tired of being a journalist and wanted to get in on the real political action in a partisan way his “journalistic” profession had “technically” always denied him. I’d almost respect him for that—Mike Duffy waking up one day and saying, “Gee, I’m a Conservative, and I’m going to dedicate the rest of my life to that cause.”
Friday, 27 March 2015
Abstract: Fear and paranoia enabled the conditions and killing of the passengers on Germanwings 9525; in honour of the victims of that flight, and for all future fliers, sensible policies, that do not replace reasonable prudence with get-tough politically-expedient reactions and expressions of fear, nor place sole power in the hands of One person or agency, should be enacted.
Surely I’m far from the first (1000, 10 000?) people to make this simple point, but fear and paranoia and obsession with “security” appear to have led to another disaster and mass loss of human life. That the 9/11 attackers de facto created a policy that made much of the world place collective fates in the hands of one extreme or potentially wingnut person no doubt gratifies them immensely in their exquisite afterlives—surely such terror, or infidel reduction, was key amongst their goals.
The tragedy occurred because one pilot was allowed to stay in the cockpit, and prevent entry from anyone else.
I’m struck by how former pilots and aviation talking heads are expressing shock and amazement that pilots would do something so horrible, when of course there are many examples of pilots embracing their godlike roles and taking many lives other than their own into their hands not for professional reasons, but for their own personal use and/or destruction (Ethiopian Airlines 702 and Egypt Air 990 are a couple of recent examples amongst numerous instances). On CTV News, an “aviation expert” named Phyl Durdey offered: “You know, who would think that, y’know, an aircraft would be put into a descent by the co-pilot?” I can’t speak for Phyl, but I don’t care if there’s 4 passengers or 400—I sure wouldn’t want to be on board an aircraft if one of the pilots found out that, say, he was being canned, or his co-pilot was sleeping with his wife, or something. Phyl seems to attribute godlike non-humanity to pilots, and with reference to the black box in the German pilot’s head, Phyl’s views are terrifyingly ironic, indeed.
Or then there’s good ol’ Air
Well, as I say, the terrorists won again. A statesman once said, “we have nothing to fear but fear itself.” By fearing fear itself, and distrusting one another and enacting ludicrous policies that can put One and only One person in charge, we opened the door for One to perversely and inexplicably take the lives of others.
That’s right, 0 (until I stand corrected). But the world largely reacted with policies that insisted that One godlike person should take control, and that does reflect a lot of our yearnings, whether that One is a person in a uniform or a generalized kind of overlord agency (or obviously a religious proxy/prophet). And obviously the exact wishes of the terrorists.
I’ve never been fond of flying. I usually have to overcome physical and physiological fears and work my way into a kind of philosophical-mental zone. You know how they say that, when you’re about to die, your whole life flashes in front of your eyes? I thought that was just a phrase—a believable phrase—but just a phrase. But I know it’s true because I’ve had that dream on airplanes and on airplanes alone—first pet, mother, etc. You never have dreams like that on the ground.
Tuesday, 24 March 2015
CSI—that franchise just propagates like head lice, or bedbugs, or mosquitoes at dusk on a northern lake. . . . When I’m on my deathbed, I’ll rue the hours I sacrificed to CSI. Once I had free cable for a few years—first time I’d had TV in more than a few years. What with my schedule and the times I was becalmed, I think I saw every episode of the old Michael Moriarty Law & Order about 15 times—I guess that’s another franchise that, given Americans’ unquenchable appetite for fear and conspiracy, just kept growing. Maybe it’s over now, though, that franchise. I liked the episodes with Jerry Orbach. Orbach seemed like a decent and philosophical guy while he lived, and I liked his weary seen-it-all character. I really liked the moral seriousness of Moriarty’s character—when was the last time you saw that on American TV (and no, I don’t mean “ideological purity” or “ideological certainty”)? But of course in real life Moriarty is apparently some wacko far-right conspiracy theorist. Wonder if he’s still in
Anyway, remember how fanatical they always were about always showing characters eating, or just doing something, to keep us occupied while we watched? Actually this is something that goes back to the earliest American radio detective serials, in which they built in patter outside the main plot to keep the audience thinking it was eavesdropping on a real situation, etc. (check out Frank and Joe swapping cigarettes in Dragnet, for example.)
Friday, 6 February 2015
Martin Short releases new biography: How I Ended Up so Desperate I Had to Shill for Companies that Will Help You Die Early or Bankrupt, Whichever Comes First
Saw Short on The Daily Show (Feb. 2, 2015). I remember Martin Short from SCTV days, and I, ah, must say that I really enjoyed his comedy. I surely thought he was very funny and maybe talented, too. He was a bit more one-note than most of his colleagues on the show, but there’s no doubting that he was one funny guy. I guess he was in movies, too, but I don’t think those are going down in comedy history, save one or two whose memory might be kept alive by ardent devotees of certain works (heck, I knew a guy who actually knew pretty much every line from Mother, Jugs & Speed, for crying out loud. That’s Mother, Jugs & Speed—if I hadn’t looked it up, I wouldn’t have realized it required an ampersand). I guess he’s been in plays and live shows, too, but I haven’t seen one. Oh, I’d go, if someone gave me a ticket. Or if I were in
I must say
Friday, 9 January 2015
(Scroll to the end if you like; the point of this message is that our Prime Minister should not be stirring up hate, but rather acting prime ministerial and urging all Canadians, as always, to respect and help one another; he clearly hasn't had a Bible handy lately.)
when it appeared he wasn’t getting his message across—to his liking.
Media--and government--sources shut down at Harper's request--Putin only dreams of such subservience. And CSIS on the job 24/7 to make sure it's maintained.
To be fair, as the following article (http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/calgary-police-officer-pleads-guilty-to-firearms-offence-1.853499) makes clear, key new gun collection practices were supposed to come into effect some years ago:
"Insp. Ken Marchant said that in the future, officers would not be sent out to collect guns for amnesty programs — participants would have to bring them to police."
"Participants." I like that. I'd like to show up at a police station in Calgary and say "HI!, I'm a participant!!"
(In other words, instead of being forced to give up guns for future resale and collectors auctions at cop gunpoint, gun owners would be allowed to bring them in, of their own free volition, to have them collected and redistibuted, for profit and/or private investment, by the Calgary Police Service under Chief Rick Hanson.) As for the practice of keeping cop gun resellers on pay but without actually working or doing any kind of job (unlike normal law-abiding citizens and taxpayers), but rather, just getting paid lavishly with huge pensions to do nothing--Chief Hanson declined to offer comment.
Harper has clearly sized up his Ontario seats and Muslim votes, and in the most cynical way possible, determined that he would come out against Muslim Canadians—despite whatever canny Kenney can do (talk about mining the ground for leadership contenders).
But we shouldn’t look at it this way. No-one and no-state or even handful of twitterers has really declared war on
No, we aren’t. Despite Stephen Harper's long-mulled political strategies and his fundamentalist Manichean view of the world, no, we’re not. We’re Canadians. We’re made of tougher stuff—we came from all over and we figured out how to survive from the people who were already here, and we’re determined to re-enact that—and we will never, ever give in to cheap gun-crazy paranoid fundamentalists who want to tell us what our “values” are when they’ve never had to actually earn some themselves.