Can’t Tolerate Bigotry…

Time to put the brakes on our slide to intolerance: Tim Harper

A government which deals with only symptoms and refuses to look at root causes is part of the problem.

By: National Affairs, Published on Sun Mar 01 2015

(with thanks to Montreal Simon’s blog for the reference:  montrealsimon.blogspot.ca)

 

What has always bemused me is the fact that a ‘Christian’ like Timothy McVeigh who was an admitted terrorist and murderer, homegrown in the late great USA, was never ever called a Christian terrorist or a Christian fundamentalist, etc. nor was his religious affiliation even considered in light of his actions..
This bigotry against The Other has always been with us..as any First Nations person in this country can attest…or any person of any colour other than lily-white, preferably male, preferably Protestant, heterosexual, etc etc…
Do we hear anything of the forced sterilization of males, or any form of birth control for men other than the 2000 year old condom or  a snip of the testicles? Nope….but abortion? A woman’s right to choose?  Seems safe for now, doesn’t it…but, just like gay marriage, our rights can be challenged on the basis of any sort of ‘moral imperative’ including that of religious belief..but don’t  whatever you do call it  fundamentalism, or intolerance..especially when  it flows from an avowed Christian source… 

During WW2, in the US,   which was the nationality that was put in concentration camps, had their belongings stolen, etc.  but let us never forget that the Japanese, and to a much lesser extent, the Italians and Germans….the Other, no matter that the President considered the Great Progressive, my  90 year old mother’s  hero,  FDR, was in office….
Harper is grasping at the same old straws, with much less reason to do so..and yes, it is gonna bite him in the bum…
In Britain, when the rightwing yahoos in “Pegida’ decided to stage an anti-Muslim march, around 300 showed up for their side..several thousand showed up to march against that principle..think that would happen here? I dare to hope so, but doubt it…and I’m an avowed pagan who really doesn’t have  time for organized religion..but my tolerance is supposedly guaranteed in this  one-time democracy we live in…
We are in the infancy of anti-Muslim rhetoric and bigotry, and, like every other anti-religious movement in the West, any excuse to scapegoat will be utilized to benefit whoever is pointing the finger, or, in the case of Harper, if his lips are moving, ya just know he’s lying…

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Wheat a Minute – Sez Who?

Wheat Belly arguments are based on shaky science, critics say

Scientists dispute claims in best-selling book, fifth estate finds

CBC News Posted: Feb 27, 2015 11:00 AM ET Last Updated: Feb 27, 2015 11:00 AM ET

 

You may refer to it as ‘shaky’ science, but those of us who have noticed a big difference in our health and our waistlines would tend to disagree..one has to wonder who financed these ‘critics’ and if the wheat lobby or those who make massive profits on such junk food as ‘cold’ cereal and white bread are prepared to out themselves…full disclosure on the part of the ‘critics’ might raise some eyebrows..
Science is always disputed and called ‘junk’ when it posits an unpopular or anti-corporate Big Food message…whatever, I will continue to avoid  most grains and starches, continue to feel much better, continue to watch the weight drop off, and you can go and argue about it in the corner…

The discussion about whether or not grains are the same  structurally today as those in the past doesn’t have much to do with the facts in my particular case..and yes, it is a variation on low carb eating, which I have found throughout my life to be the one thing that works for me – again, not a diet but a way of  eating that won’t change much, and there actually is an infinite variety of things to eat  with out feeling  too oppressed…

If someone somewhere wasn’t losing money,  and big money at that, because of a minor shift in thinking on the part of those of us who  have weight/health  issues, you can bet this  decision to eliminate  grains and starches as much as possible from our  diets wouldn’t even be acknowledged…

Now, is the  massive and suspicious rise in the price of  meat connected?  We might wonder…..

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No Good Deed Goes Unpunished Dept.- BC region….

Privatized playground at North Vancouver’s Cousteau International French School angers parent

Cousteau International French School has leased the grounds of former Fromme elementary school

CBC News Posted: Feb 24, 2015 7:37 AM PT Last Updated: Feb 24, 2015 8:23 AM PT

When we read comments  bemoaning the fact that people just aren’t as ready to volunteer, to help with charitable causes, when those interminable pleas for money  infect our public broadcasting choices, we often despair of the public perception of selflessness, even as we resent the intrusion of such dunning in our lives.

This particular  story may seem trivial, but it illustrates why  some who at one time joined together to create something lasting , not only for their children but the ones to come, might feel that their efforts were  useless.  When old schools are  sold off to the private sector, it’s more than buildings and land, and this  example  is enough to make any parent reluctant to  participate in  their children’s public schooling, either within the system or in this case putting money and effort into a  play area that  privatization has rendered  legally impassable.

Ironic, isn’t it?

Reading through some of the comments accompanying this  ‘article’  is instructive..between the  government’s supporters who  feel that  once sold, it’s private, full stop, and those who point out that even private schools exist on public money, the argument gets down to the real issue, that of taxpayers funding  of private schools..

It’s depressing enough that parents have to band together to pay for  and work for a decent, safe place  for their children to play and exercise..there’s never enough money for  actual education costs, never mind  recreation areas that  are something beyond dirt and rocks, so  why should BC taxpayers be contributing to  private schools  where they aren’t even allowed to  use the playground facilities, never mind have the  income to afford this subsidized education? Adding insult to injury , this particular school is now the possessor  of the facilities created when the school was still public, and  the parental  outrage falls on deaf ears….

The next time  parents can’t be bothered to go to parent/teacher meetings, or refuse to  volunteer to help with whatever shortfall  is loaded onto their shoulders by an uncaring provincial government that they probably voted for (if they bothered to vote at all) I hope they remember this little incident and start questioning their choices.

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Idle Worship….

Stephen Harper and the Beautiful Flag He Hates So Much

 http://montrealsimon.blogspot.ca/2015/02/stephen-harper-and-beautiful-flag-he.html

 

As an ex-Yank who always found it profoundly disturbing that rampant, ignorant, my way or the highway stupid patriotism started with ridiculous flag-worship in the States, have to say that spending any kind of big money on the anniversary of a flag seems dumb in the extreme…It’s great to acknowledge it, and fun to read about the people involved, but I hate to see Canadians who are mostly rational and intelligently fervent about their love of country get all worked up about such trivia as how much Harpo spent on celebrating a flag…
Beware…this is the sort of blindness that Harpo would love to encourage, even if it is at his expense..
The saying south of the 49th, when I was a kid, was “America, love it or leave it” and we always retorted, “Change it or lose it” but as we all know, that never happened..we have to make sure that Canada stays progressive and free of the sort of rightwing symbol worship that infects the US and leads to the  “Kill ‘em all, let God decide…” sort of rationale  …
There was a time when Americans used to wear a Canadian flag when they traveled to Europe to prevent themselves from being targeted as Yanks…I hear that doesn’t work so well these days, after more than a decade of the HarperCons….

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Justin Plays the Apple to Con’s Eve…

Eve Adams, former Conservative MP, to join Liberal Party

‘She wanted to be her community’s voice in Ottawa, not the prime minister’s voice in her community': Trudeau

By Kady O’Malley, CBC News Posted: Feb 09, 2015 8:33 AM ET Last Updated: Feb 09, 2015 11:20 AM ET

 

Hahahahaha! Trudeau is really scraping the bottom of the barrel here..talk about a disgruntled former HarperCon picking up her marbles and running away….
If this is the best he can do to show that rightwing politics aren’t  alive and well and living in the Liberal party, what hope is there for any of us?
A certain car-part heiress comes to mind…and where is the new attitude that Junior Trudeau tries to put across…all he’s doing is showing just how much alike the two parties really are, the parts, corrupted or otherwise, are interchangeable, and this political Barbie is just another chancer caught up in a power grab..it’s all so pathetic, and so typical..where are the true progressives in this country, willing to put it on the line and stand for something positive about Canada?

I am sick to death of  headlines trumpeting trivia like this sort of stupidity..who cares,  does anyone feel as if some earth-shattering thing has happened with this latest defection from the infection that is the Con Party? Is there no other newsworthy thing happening that could replace this ugly non-event..no?

And what does that say about the true state of political reality in this country?

The only thing missing is the iconic  photo-op of Dmitri Soudas, with a borrowed pooch to pet, crying in his garden….

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Any Cardboard to Spare?

 

Affordable housing in Vancouver within reach: Michael Geller

Michael Geller says innovative design and financing ideas are key to creating more affordable Vancouver homes

By Margaret Gallagher, CBC News Posted: Feb 02, 2015 7:29 AM PT Last Updated: Feb 02, 2015 7:29 AM PT

 

Yes, let’s crowd those poor people into micro-style sardine tins, charge an arm and a leg so that they couldn’t afford to flee even if they wanted to, and call it ‘progress’.

Look around, this issue is everywhere in the world that corporate interests are paramount…
In London people are protesting in the streets about a lack of affordable housing, and the young there don’t vote, either, so it is the elites who keep voting in Conservatives (pay attention, Canada) whose donors are all elites, etc etc and so it goes…
Nothing will change until there is a level playing field, and those who make millions are unwilling to either pay taxes or share….or even be seen to be playing on any field not pre-approved by  the donor committees designed to  keep the status quo intact…

These sorts of articles bolster the fact that there are  few  palatable solutions to the  ridiculous prices for real estate, and rentals, and generally low pay and less than stellar working conditions..

First they successfully  neutered most unions, and fed the public (and yes, that includes the education system) an insidious brand of tripe that included the sort of anti-worker propaganda once reserved for racist hyperbole…and now?  Few workers are protected on any level,  decent wages and conditions are a pipe dream for most, and the rich just keep getting richer, while the rest of us  wonder how to manage…our expectations could not possibly get any lower…

Sub prime is back in the US, and we can only hope that come our next election, we rid ourselves of the ghastly Cons so that someone in power can  begin to undo the damage here, and that Harper does not retain majority power, or I’m afraid that  nice little articles about  alternative  mini-housing will go the way of the dodo as the rest of us wonder about the efficacy of a large cardboard box, lined in trash bags, for insulation against  a nuclear winter…

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Mood Indigo, and No Surprises Here, Folks…..

Chapters to close Robson store in downtown Vancouver

Chapters Indigo blames high rent as it prepares to shut down its flagship Vancouver location

CBC News Posted: Jan 19, 2015 3:15 PM PT Last Updated: Jan 19, 2015 6:58 PM PT

For those of us old enough to remember, Robson St. used to be a friendly, vibrant place to shop, full of independent shops and especially European-style retail, restaurants and others…independent grocers, Asian restaurants abounded…it was a wonderful, welcoming place..
Then, the landlords got greedy (surprise, surprise!)
Suddenly, all those wonderful shops started closing down, a bunch of high-end typical mall type clothing stores moved in, and Robson St. was no longer much fun…or affordable.
Chapters contributed to the decline of independent booksellers, destroying such beloved enterprises as Duthies..and now, we are supposed to feel sorry for them, and McBucks? You gotta be kidding!
By the time I left Vancouver in 2009 (thus avoiding living in the 2nd most expensive real estate/rental market after Hong Kong (surprise, surprise!) I could not have told you the last time I had gone to Robson St. for anything…
Greedy landlords are always with us..and the time to worry about giant retail operations having to move around is long since past…really, who cares? When the Vancouver property bubble bursts on all these ridiculous prices (inevitable) no one will be worrying about the likes of giant ‘bookseller’ monopolies, or the ubiquitous, over-priced coffee stands that litter (figuratively and literally) the downtown streets…

As prices for all these properties, retail and  housing alike, inch up, it inevitably will create a no-man’s-land of entitlement…get used to that, I guess…

Today, the media announced in that irritating way the have that, blatantly obvious to most of us, Vancouver has  the second highest housing  un-affordability in the world-after Hong Kong…could anything be more ironic?

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