Member since: Wed Oct 29, 2008, 04:34 PM
Number of posts: 308
Number of posts: 308
It reminds me of 1984 in a big way.
Now, I know people throw "Orwellian" around a lot, and half of them have absolutely no idea what it means. And what they're usually missing is the bit of speech from O'Brien near the end of the novel. Big Brother and The Party don't want power as a means to an end, they want power as the end.
The GOP has completely trained their followers that power is the end, not the means. It's far more important that their guy is in the White House instead of the other guy, even if they -hate- their guy.
My in-laws live in Houston (I'm Canadian). I was in Houston just before W got elected for the second time. I had the opportunity to ask a bunch of people why they'd be voting for W. Most of them -hated- W, but their answer was always the same: It's better than the alternative. They didn't mean Kerry, of course, they just meant "the other guy." It could have been a cross between Jesus and Einstein, but if he had a D after his name, better to have our guy in there.
This is the defining quotation from 1984:
The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness: only power, pure power. What pure power means you will understand presently. We are different from all the oligarchies of the past, in that we know what we are doing. All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were cowards and hypocrites. The German Nazis and the Russian Communists came very close to us in their methods, but they never had the courage to recognize their own motives. They pretended, perhaps they even believed, that they had seized power unwillingly and for a limited time, and that just round the corner there lay a paradise where human beings would be free and equal. We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means, it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?
It has nothing to do with constant surveillance or freedom of speech or starting false wars. Those are all just symptoms. Those are just the ACTIONS that are taken in order to reach the GOAL, which is power.
Posted by Saviolo | Sat Oct 13, 2012, 05:36 PM (1 replies)
Despite so many in the US believing that Canada is a "socialist" haven of high taxes (repeatedly reported by the RW in the US), it turns out that major Canadian cities have a lower tax burden than US major cities.
The article in The Toronto Standard:
is a little slim on details, but it does link to the original study in .pdf format, as well as the Forbes article: http://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyphillipserb/2012/09/25/the-most-tax-friendly-country-in-the-world-is-spoiler-alert-its-not-the-u-s/
that gives a lot more detail.
Despite Canada's reputation as a heavily taxed country, it is apparently #2 in the world based on overall tax burden, with the following methodology:
The accounting giant conducted a major study of the general tax competitiveness of fourteen countries with an emphasis on the climate in 55 major international cities. The study took into consideration the relative corporate income tax, capital tax, sales tax, property tax and miscellaneous local business tax burdens of those countries, along with the statutory labor costs.
With India taking the #1 spot, and the USA coming in at #8, it puts things into a business perspective for the US.
Posted by Saviolo | Fri Sep 28, 2012, 10:40 AM (2 replies)
This news is a little old, but this is the first I've heard about it. It's hard to believe that this could happen, but... then again, it's not so hard to believe.
Here's the story:
To paraphrase, a brokerage employee during a drunken blackout state traded so much money on oil futures that it changed the price of oil globally. One man, while incoherently drunk.
Some excerpts (emphasis mine):
It was 7.45am on June 30 last year when the senior, longstanding broker for PVM Oil Futures was contacted by an admin clerk querying why he'd bought 7m barrels of crude in the middle of the night.
Let's put that into perspective. $1.50 increase on a barrel of oil means that some people had to decide between filling their car to go to work or eating that week. Did people their jobs because they couldn't afford the gas to get to them? Did people die because they couldn't afford oil to heat their homes. This one man pushed oil prices up -globally-.
I'd say he deserves a harsher punishment than what is indicated in the article, but the problem is systemic. Brokers and corporations all have their collective twitchy finger on the same button. But no, they want to be deregulated further. They want no oversight. They want the inmates to run the asylum.
Posted by Saviolo | Mon Sep 24, 2012, 04:17 PM (29 replies)
Someone on my Twitter feed just linked me to this article. Really excellent read about someone who comes to the realization that they have been lied to for a long time about how Universal Health Care works. The author describes herself as a "die-hard conservative Republican" several times, who was disgusted by the idea of being under a gov't mandated health plan in Canada.
I'm Canadian, so I can't really speak to her experience in the US system, but having grown up in Canada, and having used the system all my life, her experience with the Canadian system rings true.
When I moved to Canada in 2008, I was a die-hard conservative Republican. So when I found out that we were going to be covered by Canada's Universal Health Care, I was somewhat disgusted. This meant we couldn't choose our own health coverage, or even opt out if we wanted too. It also meant that abortion was covered by our taxes, something I had always believed was horrible. I believed based on my politics that government mandated health care was a violation of my freedom.
Read the whole story here:
Posted by Saviolo | Mon Sep 24, 2012, 08:52 AM (20 replies)
A 39-year-old Halifax man says he used pepper spray on a teenager after she harassed his partner for six weeks.
"I actually pepper-sprayed her," said Christopher Whittle. Whittle spoke with the CBC's Elizabeth Chiu because he wants people to know this was not a random act.
The incident happened last Friday, when Halifax Regional Police said a 14-year-old girl was sprayed with an irritant near the parking lot of the Halifax Shopping Centre.
"This was happening every few days. She was coming and making comments about him being gay, and basically just taunting him for who he was, calling him a faggot, fruit whatever," Whittle said.
Friday, Whittle said he witnessed an incident between the girl and his partner. He said he snapped.
Whittle said he was shocked to find out the person he sprayed was a 14-year-old girl. He said she looks older, and assumed she was a woman.
"I do regret how I handled it. I could have handled it differently. But at the time I guess I was just so upset with everything that had gone on, that's how I reacted."
Police say whatever the reason, there's no excuse to pepper spray anyone.
"They should take other means such as calling police, and allow us to deal with it so they don't find themselves in a position of being charged criminally," said Halifax Const. Brian Palmeter.
Posted by Saviolo | Thu Sep 13, 2012, 09:09 PM (5 replies)
Interesting little video I was directed to yesterday. It's definitely worth the 30 minute run time to get through it (though the ending is perhaps a bit needlessly jingoistic).
From the information box on YouTube:
The AMERICAN DREAM is a 30 minute animated film that shows you how you've been scammed by the most basic elements of our government system. All of us Americans strive for the American Dream, and this film shows you why your dream is getting farther and farther away. Do you know how your money is created? Or how banking works? Why did housing prices skyrocket and then plunge? Do you really know what the Federal Reserve System is and how it affects you every single day? THE AMERICAN DREAM takes an entertaining but hard hitting look at how the problems we have today are nothing new, and why leaders throughout our history have warned us and fought against the current type of financial system we have in America today. You will be challenged to investigate some very entrenched and powerful institutions in this nation, and hopefully encouraged to help get our nation back on track.
I was going to put it into the Video & Multimedia section, but it seems a little... conspiracy-theory-ish for that department, at times.
Update: Here's a good review of the video, indicating some of its shortfalls. I did notice the absence of Glass-Steagall in the video, etc...
Posted by Saviolo | Sat Sep 1, 2012, 09:53 AM (0 replies)
Canadian energy giant Enbridge wants to put an oil pipeline/tanker route from the already dubious tar sands through waterways and rainforest to move oil. Seem dangerous? Well, in order to make it seem -less- dangerous, Enbridge had 1000 square kilometers of islands deleted from a map in both images and a video showing the project, in order to make it look more appealing.
Enbridge has been in the news a lot lately due to terrible pipeline oil spills like this:
but this latest move just seems that much more offensive, because it assumes that all the people involved are stupid. From the article in the Vancouver Sun:
About 1,000 square kilometres of islands have disappeared from Douglas Channel in an animated depiction of Enbridge Inc.'s proposed Northern Gateway pipeline and tanker route.
Enbridge is a dirty, polluting, unsafe company, and is lying through their teeth to get us to just buck up and let them do what they want, and damn the torpedoes. Here are links to some of the relevant sources and resources:
Vancouver Sun article:
Sum Of Us blog post with the images:
The website of Enbridge itself:
Posted by Saviolo | Thu Aug 16, 2012, 12:52 PM (4 replies)
From the Owldolatrous Productions blog:
Now, letís get to the nitty-gritty of things. Please read carefully. These things have been said before, but not by me, and not all in one place. Please read with an open mind. If you canít read with an open mind, please leave, take a minute, come back, and try again. If you canít do that, then please donít bother. Please read all of the words here, rather than just reading half of the argument and assuming you know what Iím saying. Read these words as they are written. Again, if you donít want to read my words, then donít continue.
He goes on for a few more excellent points. By and large the comments are very supportive, but even as clearly as he's put it, there are still some who -just don't get it!!-
This is also making the rounds on Facebook and Twitter.
Posted by Saviolo | Thu Aug 2, 2012, 06:20 PM (2 replies)
And call it what it really is? Assault and violence.
As WillParkinson posted a little earlier, a 14 year old child was blinded in one eye when students from the grade below held him down and beat him around the head and face until his glasses broke and damaged his cornea. He now needs a transplant. The family is now suing the school:
But they bandy the word "bullying" around again and again. Listen, I was bullied in high school. Kids can be cruel and mean little shits, but this is not bullying. We keep hearing that kids will be kids and that children need to stand up to bullies... I agree. But these kids that beat this 14 year old up are not bullies. They are dangerous, violent people. This is a separate problem from bullying, this is children that have gone completely wild, and are out of control.
How bad have things gotten when we can see something like this and call it bullying? Or shake our heads and say that kids will be kids? Kids are -dying- out there. Kids are being maimed, injured, blinded. Bullying is losing your lunch money, not your eye.
Posted by Saviolo | Tue Jun 19, 2012, 01:59 PM (13 replies)
From Alan Cross, a Canadian "professional music geek," longtime radio broadcaster, and blogger.
He was just in Singapore for the Music Matters conference there, and the cancellation was big news there!
From his article:
The status of her Jakarta show was big news in Singapore--and not merely celebrity news, either. It was a hearts and minds issue and one with serious political and social overtones. (Rather than rehash everything here, please go back and read the original post.)
Here are the two relevant posts:
I think the big take-away from this one is "Authorities have caved to the demands of a religious minority."
Posted by Saviolo | Mon May 28, 2012, 09:55 AM (2 replies)