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Joe Shlabotnik

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Home country: Canada
Current location: Rust Belt Ontario
Member since: Fri Sep 23, 2011, 09:36 PM
Number of posts: 4,156

Journal Archives

We need more exposÚs of this shit,

because until it filters through the white middle class bubble, its not going to change. And what those in the bubble have to realize is that its no longer just some poor inner-city kid who never had a future anyway, its their lily-white precious sons and increasingly daughters that are in the cross hairs of this machine.

Our society is becoming a society of no-second chances, with an ever widening net of what constitutes criminal behaviour. Every misstep we say or commit is logged to be used against us. Vast numbers of people are becoming unemployable, unable to travel, afraid to speak up publicly or lodge complaints, are denied loans and mortgages, and are unable to even help themselves acquire the skills to lead 'productive' lives.

Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Sat Feb 23, 2013, 01:01 AM (2 replies)

People recognize that changes need to be made,

but they think that its others who must do the sacrificing. Its pure arrogance and selfishness. Perfect examples are the tea partier on Medicare, or the corporate world who don't pay taxes but insist on public austerity.

Even 35 years ago, people went apoplectic at the audacity of Jimmy Carter suggesting that maybe we put a sweater on and turn the thermostat down a few degrees. Soon after they choose a Don Draper type of president who sold them reassurances like Lucky Strikes: Every thing's OK, despite being toxic. Delusional.

Many interpret hardship as not being able to go on vacation or buy a new car. Never mind that they have 2 cars in the driveway. Sometimes I think about my grandparents, who like millions of others came to the new world in the late 1800's - 1950. They worked their asses off each day plowing fields with a horse, and when the old horse finally died, they were consoled by the fact that at least they got to eat it.

Dirt poor immigrants that suffered repressive governments, fear of being 'disappeared' in the middle of the night, religious persecution, famines, wars came to the new world with a sense of community, and an understanding that through shared sacrifice and working together (gasp! socialism) everyone benefited. Those were the common heroes that advanced civil rights, created labour unions and fought Robber Barons and tycoons, demanded that advances in productivity were shared among all. We've forgotten all of that.

By contrast we're too spoiled and stupefied by relative comfort, hype and gadgetry. Unfortunately I agree that nothing is going to change until something drastic happens, and yes, this time it's probably too late.

Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Wed Jan 30, 2013, 04:53 PM (0 replies)

It takes decades and generations

to build the kind of high quality manufacturing infrastructure that the US (and Canada ) have/had. It takes decades and generations to create a skilled working class with good paying jobs and humane labor standards. Yet it takes only the swipe of a pen to sell it all off for a quick buck, lining the pockets of a few.

And once its gone, it is assumed that it is too impractical or expensive to rebuild it all.
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Sun Nov 11, 2012, 04:26 PM (0 replies)

Occupy's message is more relevent now than ever.

Lets hope that the 'fiscal cliff' doesn't produce a grand bargain that hurts the most vulnerable, or keeps wasting money on a bloated military, and subsidizing big business.

Climate change was right up in everyone's face last week with hurricane Sandy; might be good time to kill the Keystone pipeline for good, and examine public infrastructure, and investment into alternative energy sources too.

Marijuana got legalized in 2 states, maybe its time to examine the costly war on drugs. Soon it'll be cabinet shuffling time, so its a perfect opportunity to get rid of the incompetent Eric Holder. Maybe its time to give homeland security a bit of a haircut too (The police have enough urban-tanks).

Its also a good time to protect and ensure a free and public internet, so that citizen journalists can continue to capture '47% moments' and continue to do the job that the mainstream media doesn't.

Now that Obama is reelected, and some progressive Dems will reinforce congress, now is the time to push for promises to be kept, and bold initiatives to be introduced towards the future sustainability of people, not corporate interests.
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Fri Nov 9, 2012, 05:05 PM (0 replies)

Lets hear it for citizen journalism!

Fact is: if not for this employee taking the risks of filming and releasing this amateur clip, the election might have gone differently.

The other fact is that the MSM is incapable and unwilling to investigate or expose anything anymore, in lieu of spewing massaged press releases for 'access', and towing the corporate line for big bucks.

The 47% tape, and coverage of the Arab spring, OWS, police brutality etc further prove that we need citizen journalists, and a free and public internet, more now than ever.
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Fri Nov 9, 2012, 03:12 PM (0 replies)

Profiles of (marginal) Canadians: Eddie Shack!

When I was a little kid, my favorite hockey player was Eddie Shack (#23). Its not because he was all that great, in fact by the time I became a fan of his, he was already the Joe Shlabotnik of Hockey. The first time I met Eddie was when I was in grade 1, and he came to our school to promote reading. Shack was basically illiterate. He was an apprentice meat cutter who tried out for the OHA on lark, thinking that he didn't have a chance, and would just go back to becoming a butcher. Instead, he won 4 cups with the leafs, and became a fan favorite.

Clear the track, here comes Shack! by the Secrets


Takes out the glass and starts a fight


Picks a fight with the St. Louis Blues and then chickens out


Becomes a spokesperson for just about everything because of his fun character



*just in the mood for some random nostalgia today!
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Sat Sep 29, 2012, 09:29 PM (1 replies)

Come Nov 7th

Obama will be in the white house, and hopefully more Dems in congress. But the religious right, purveyors of war, Wall street elite and the army of corporate lobbyists aren't about to give up. Casting a ballot is an essential first step in prevent a Republican catastrophe, but thats only the beginning.

Come November 7th, push left. Push HARD left, and keep pushing, so that maybe if we're lucky we'll see something that resembles what used to be the center. On Nov 7 2016, it might be Jeb smiling and waving, so a lot of work must be done before then.

The president and congress (and likely a supreme court pick) must be pushed leftward to address:
the environmental crisis that we are in.
They must be pushed left to restore civil liberties that have been eroded over the last 11 years.
They must be pushed left to create jobs that are sustainable and meaningful.
They must be pushed left to accept that 'market based solutions' and trade agreements are creating an extreme amount of wealth for the very few, and are simply a re-branding of "trickle down" economics.
They must be pushed left to accept that capitalism as we know it is deeply flawed and getting worse, and band aids aren't enough anymore.

As individuals it is incumbent upon each one of us to hold elected representatives feet to the fire. It is also incumbent upon every person to reevaluate whether their worth is calculated by the contents of their wallets, or the contents of their hearts. Every person who has a stake in the future should start realizing the status quo is crashing, and its up to us to decide whether we want to crash and burn, or manage a soft landing.
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Wed Sep 26, 2012, 11:45 PM (1 replies)

The game is much bigger now.

The stakes are higher, and the whole world is involved. Never before have so many people been able to communicate and organize, and never before has the right to communicate and organize been more important and at risk. If a free and open Internet ever falls to corporate control, then the 1% gain our greatest tool. If civil liberties continue to be curtailed in the guise of 'security', than the 1% will never fear retribution for their corruption.

These rights are bigger than political parties, as are the just grievances of an educated and connected generation that can now discuss corruption, examine propaganda and question the entire system that previous generations were resigned to accept as intrinsically unchangeable. What scares the PTB the most is not that people will temporarily snub the sugar coating, but that they'll realize that what their eating is economic,social and environmental soylent green.
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Wed Sep 5, 2012, 01:19 AM (1 replies)

without politicizing it, I think you bring up some good points.

We don't have a scarcity problem, we have a distribution problem on this planet. The concept of job was relevant when each person had to contribute mostly physical labour to scrape from the earth a basic existence. We're 100 years past that, but are conditioned to believe that not working = laziness.

And when you stop to consider that many of our jobs are derived from immoral endeavors such as militarism, spying on one another, imprisoning others, swindling, producing junk that uses up natural resources, and trading imaginary numbers through financial markets; most of our jobs are quite unnecessary.

However, I can't imagine what it would take for people to seriously reassess their values and the system as a whole.
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Tue Aug 28, 2012, 04:52 AM (0 replies)

Classic conservative modus operandi.

Take something that works. Break it. Impose market based "solutions".

step 1 Throw some red meat to your authoritarian base: Pass tougher sentences, and mandatory minimums.
step 2 Be 'fiscally conservative' and close prisons, only to have over crowding in remaining prisons.
step 3 Invite Geo Group to build private for-profit prisons.

http://404systemerror.com/lobbyists-behind-omnibus-crime-bill-aimed-at-privatizing-prisons/

http://404systemerror.com/geo-canada/
Posted by Joe Shlabotnik | Mon Aug 27, 2012, 05:37 PM (0 replies)
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