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Showing posts from September, 2015

I knew something stunk about the Conservative's surplus

Where's the bodies?
In this case, where's the expected deficit?
The Ottawa Citizen has the answer.
$8.7 billion went unspent by the government, this year, which clawed back this money from programs and services across Canada after it had already been allocated for spending.
That's bad. That's actually incredibly irresponsible. It's damn near criminal.
I know my own family had work relying on federal monies this past summer, and then the money simply vanished, and the bottom fell out of our plans. We really had to scramble about these past few months after we had expected to be working.
And if my family was hit by this, then I can imagine hundreds more families like mine were also affected by this, and hundreds of businesses, too. That's thousands and thousands of workers. That's real money that's disappearing from the economy. That's work that disappears, and jobs that are lost.
What's worse is the government clawed back $8.7 billion from the rea…

Fudge it rhymes with budget

CBC News
Somehow, I really don't trust these fellows in government, right now. They've done nothing to impress upon me they in any way understand taxation. Or even representation. They don't understand governing, whatsoever, to be honest.
A $1.9 billion surplus when they'd forecast a $2 billion deficit? Seems shady. Something stinks of a lie.
The most likely reason is the government is excluding something from the budget. Some thing or things totaling $3 billion in spending, not being accounted for by this Conservative government. It'd be nice if we had a budget officer who'd have already looked into the numbers to announce whether the government was being honest or not. However, the current one's a lame duck. Nothing at all like his predecessor, who was a terrier who nipped at the heels of the government.
News organizations seem to be announcing this news without any sense of skepticism. They're acting as government press agents. Should we have expecte…

Vancouver's Downtown Eastside residents dying at eight times the national average

CBC News
Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, which is often associated with despair, poverty and addiction, now has a grim new claim to fame. I lived in the Downtown Eastside for a short spell. Yes, the latter two do exist in prevailing amounts, but despair? Dunno.
I lived in poverty, too, there. The hardest thing to get was a good meal. Oh, food itself was plentiful, but good healthy food, not so much.
There's dozens, if not hundreds, of incredible volunteers, each working to make life even a little easier for the residents there.
As for the mortality rate, I'm not surprised. Vancouver's on a slope, and the drain is in the Downtown Eastside. Everything washes up there.
As for the study, good on UBC for undertaking it.

Syria

It's important to remember, Syria's civil war was probably caused by climate change.
There were a myriad of internal factors, that had laid the timber for the flames of war, such as corruption, torture, poverty, and external aggression, but the spark setting it all ablaze was caused by the drought impacting the nation's ability to feed itself.
Generally, that's the case. People can put up with all sorts of abuse. An abuse victim will continually return to the abuser. Right up until they've had enough. Usually, that's after the food has run out.
What's dismaying is the West's solution to the civil war was to bomb the shit out of Syria. Thank god for Kerry squarely placing his foot in his mouth giving Russia the opportunity to, in a sense, save Syria.
Can you imagine the magnitude of the humanitarian disaster that would be playing out, now, had Syria been reduced to complete rubble, as the US had originally wanted?
Actually, can you imagine what we should…

The First Nations Financial Transparency Act

I was angry, yesterday. Said some harsh words.
I'm calmer, today.
Still thinking on the First Nations Financial Transparency Act.
Such a racist act. It's not an act which does what it purports to do. Rather, it's meant to open up First Nations governments like a tin can, so that the government can do as it wants to First Nations people, and more importantly, do as it will with the lands First Nations people live upon. Scoop out resources and title as one would sardines.
It's designed to shame and ridicule our First Nations leaders.
Mistakes, and deficits are the same as crimes, according to this act. And the government can spin any audit into any shape it wants, if it pays the right company the right price. Remember that sham audit of Attawapiskat? Imagine that, but across the nation of Canada.
And when it does its job of marginalizing our First Nations leaders, the government then has full authority to replace our leadership with third party management.
Which is bulls…

This is why running to the left of the ruling class is important

Hillary Clinton Just Picked Sides With the Democrats’ Warren Wing Against the Rubin Wing
Now, I'm not saying Clinton is to be trusted, but she was forced to pick against her own interest here, in this one instance. It's a small ripple. Possibly, more will occur as the campaign continues, and she worries of losing more ground than she already has to the insurgent, Bernie Sanders.
Now, is he going to win the Democratic Primary? I don't know. I hope so, but I worry he will not.
I worry Sanders will act as sheepdog, sheparding Democratic fence sitters and undecided into the voting ranks, and convince them to vote for whoever's the Democratic choice, no matter how bad that choice may be.
But he is a choice, even if for only a short time. His presence has forced a change in Clinton's campaign, and forced her to make a promise she probably had no interest in making.
This is why it's important to continue putting pressure on the Democratic candidates, even if it's …

Conservative shaming of First Nations, continues

Dozens of B.C. First Nations failed to file financial statements by deadline 
Unabated. Unopposed.
Shameful. Hateful. Unjustifiable.
This shaming treatment of First Nations leaders must stop.
I hate Harper for this. I hate the Canadian government for this. I hate Canada for this.
The Harper government gives to First Nations communities all the pennies it had discontinued, and then demands absolute accountability upon each and every god damned cent. Every cent must be tracked, three times signed for.
First Nations bands are paralyzed with fear for any misstep invites in third party management, which is more often than not, utterly worse at managing First Nations communities than the supposed corrupt leaders it displaced. Third party management is the new age Indian Agent.
Cities are not subject to this humiliation. Provinces are not subject to this dishonor. Harper himself stonewalled his own Parliamentary Budget Officer when he was being asked difficult questions about his own spent m…

Canada's 2015 federal election

Harper's scum. I'll grant that.
However, so is Mulcair. He's stabbed more old-guard Dippers in the back than Harper's ever managed to do in from the political battlefront.
Do I wish and hope for Harper to lose this election? Yes. But I don't trust either the NDP or the Liberals to do right for Canadians, either. Both leadership groups have thrown their lot in with  neo-liberal ideology. Ostensibly free trade, although who it's free for is a roulette wheel guess. Further development of the tar sands. Half-measures somehow designed to magically halt Canada's further slide into recession.
Neo-liberalism is a failed ideology. It destroys nations. Even massive states like Russia can be brought down low by it. Even rich ones like Japan are forced into decades long recession.
And in this election, we have a choice between two neo-liberal parties, and one neo-conservative party. Not much of a choice, is there?
Harper offers nothing. He's a spiteful, hateful man…