Friday, February 27, 2009

Shell Shock, Hero to Bum and other misc. thoughts

In these difficult times we are inundated with opinions, analysis, explanations from experts and heaping helpings of bad news and propaganda. It's tough to achieve firm understanding with so much conflicting information. Especially when one considers the very real aspect of disinformation that swirls about constantly. People like the Soro's and Mr. Rogers of the world may be very smart in their own right, but when it comes to delivering a convincing argument in support of their ambitions, they should farm that out to the PR guru's, because their motives are transparent . Some others, not so much. A good deal of the doom and gloom that is reported everyday needs to be taken with a huge dose of salt, as it is just as easily manipulation of investment buying and selling trends as it is sound and concerned efforts to inform. As my own personal level of shell shock has increased regarding the current scenario, I have come to be much more resistant to the gloomers prophecies, and more attuned to what I know, what I have experienced and what I hear in the streets.

Upon browsing Kinsella's site today I saw a video of some Wall St. guy ranting on about the travesties of bailing out dead beat homeowners. The irony of it all. In time many people will become conditioned to the arseholery, and self centred sales pitches, and develop something similar to shell shock. A layer of armor so to speak, that surrounds the senses and automatically tunes out much of the fear and grief and brings a settling into the parameters of a frame of mind that is comfortable for them. That can vary greatly, and I think we are seeing an amount of this already. On one side of the spectrum there are the forces of the weirdosphere squeaking ever louder and gaining legitimacy in some peoples minds. The counterbalance is the objective thinkers. There seems to be a growing firming up of the positions of the two. Which will emerge dominant, I can't say but I know it takes far less effort and ability to let others tell you what to think. Either way, in time the words from the other side become largely irrelevant to the chosen view.

Which brings me to Hero and Bum. I mentioned this in regards to Obama around the time of his election, and am watching this scenario and how it is being worked by various self interests. Like the Wall St. dude mentioned above. Those shell shocked into hearing only his rant without questioning his hypocracy are an ever growing number. The circle the wagons mentality people, who never bother to consider the consequences of their narrow views. The leaders of the Wagon people don't reflect upon the regular people whose money and futures they themselves, and their employers lost in their quests for self satisfaction. Unfortunately these types must be tolerated. These are the collective I refer to as Carpet Baggers. As things progress, we hear more and more from this group as they go about criticizing things such as the program to help homeowners while they stand measuring the porridge in their bowls and crying that it is not enough. Still, they take the porridge anyway. Thoughtful of them. Now we hear them screeching but do we hear real alternatives from them? I haven't. What I have heard is endless simplistic attacks, that appear intended simply to oppose Obama's administration, and cast negativity. Or more to my theme, turn Obama from Hero, to Bum in the minds of the people. Continuous politicking it would seem.

In the words of their fallen shiney face, "There's a time for politics".

If anyone thinks that fixing the monsterous mess that is the American economy is an easy task, then I suggest much more reading. If they think that waving a magic wand over the problems in the meddle east, (that's not a typo) is possible, then I suggest they are too dumb to reason with. The sheer complexity of the many issues that Obama is expected to address effectively is, beyond the level of most people's personal education, experiences and understanding.

I believe the World is the victim of a fraud the scale of which has never been seen before. Dealing with those who are complicit either wittingly or unwittingly is not something that can be accomplished in a matter of mere weeks, nor months for that matter. Undoing the structure that has been put in place to perpetrate this fraud will be an extraordinary battle, which will meet extraordinary resistance, and would require extraordinary determination.

Some monsterous battles will need to be fought, and not on a battlefield spilling the blood of boys, and non combatants but in the halls of Governments. The Regulatory bodies. The battle ground of common sense, and sense of purpose. Stock markets and investment vehicles have outgrown their original purposes, and have to be completely revamped. Companies who produce frankenseeds and prey upon the World's poor must be stopped dead in their tracks. Significant steps have to be taken to deal with intransigent States that depend on foreign aid. Huge Energy conglomorates have to be reined in and made to act as responsible citizens of the World, not merely self interested Corporate entities. Governments, such as our own must focus on setting an example of responsibility, instead of one of expedience.

In order to begin, perhaps someone could start an organization called Greedaholics Anonymous.

Hi, my name is _________, and I am a Greedaholic. I am prepared to embark on a 12 step program to cure my wanton soul.

That said, I have another bit of perspective to add. From an article about Latvia;

"In Latvia, people seem genuinely shocked at how quickly the rug was pulled out from under them and how hard their country is falling. But Vanags says Latvia has been through tough times before and will survive this crisis.

"If you take older generation people who lived through the Soviet Union, through the breakup of the Soviet Union, through the Russian financial crisis, I think they're very fatalistic about it."

For them, he says, "it is just another crisis."

But for younger people, who have never seen this, who have grown up in a market economy in Latvia, I think it is much more of a shock. They thought that wages would go on rising forever. Well, they're not."

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Caught with their mitts in the cookie jar

Red Tory has a story up entitled Fall of the Wall Street Wizards, and it's about 4 investment type folk getting caught doing the naughty. These infractions appear to be in the millions, rather than the billions/trillions, so small fish I suppose, but the story begs some questions. The impression is given that they were caught because people tried to get their money out of the investments the scamsters had set up, and couldn't.

Nothing to do with any regulatory body. They didn't find it. Nooooo..... So, why not? What exactly have those people been doing in recent years? Why didn't we hear from the politico's and those representing the financial conscience? I suggest the very same reasons they are currently ass kissing the money folk.

Then there was that Conrad Black thing. The millions that became $1 million, and a healthy company that made people money, now gone and even the remnants are in tatters. Why is that, one has to ask? So how come these regulatory bodies were so diligent in that case? Oh right, they were sending a message to Corporate America and their derivatives. It took them how long to react to Madoff?

I suspect ole Bern was a master of the game taught by his ancestors. Don't forget the little people. Spread the grease far enough, and things get slippery for everyone.

Comrade Pistoff

Making nice with the Taliban

That's the title of a CBC article that skirts some of the issues surrounding Pakistan's initiative to allow the Taliban to have Sharia law in their northwest region called Swat.

Apparently there is another proposal. The Provincial Government has suggested arming the local population with 30,000 rifles as a way of empowering them. If you had to choose, which idea would you favor?

So.... what have our Government representatives been up to lately?

Here's one item of truly National interest;

Then there's this;

"Minister of Veteran Affairs Greg Thompson accused Carolyn Bennett yesterday of making some sort of 'unacceptable' and 'embarassing' gesture toward Helena Guergis, the Minister of State for the Status of Women."

Apparently Ms. Bennett made blonde joke gestures. Imagine.

Were they done yet? Nope.

"The so-called Catgate scandal just won't seem to go away. Conservative MP Lois Brown raised the issue again in the House of Commons yesterday in another feeble attempt by her Party to score a political point or two. She also sided with avowed racist Kathy Shaidle and defended her right to appear on national television."

Catgate refers to Warren Kinsella making some remarks regarding a restaurant in Ottawa. Like who cares?

I have just one word for all this. Clusterf*ck.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Great Recession

Some interesting views from Harvard economic historian, Niall Ferguson. Among other things, he refers to this little spot of troubles as the Great Recession which he indicates may well last for better part of a decade. Besides discussing things like possible civil wars in some less stable countries, he does have some positive things to say. I agree with much of his analysis and thought I would pass it along. I picked it up over at Squirrels r Us.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Britain's Northern Rock to pay bonuses to managers

"On a conference call with journalists, Gary Hoffman, Northern Rock's chief executive, said that an undisclosed number of senior managers could also receive a deferred bonus payment, even though the bank's losses grew through 2008. It is expected to make another hefty loss this year."

"I don't think all banks are the same, and I don't think that all bankers are the same," said Hoffman, adding that Northern Rock had failed in 2007, although it was not nationalised until early 2008.

"Pay for performance is not a bad thing … I'm pleased that we can reward our frontline staff."

Can you see the man in a Toga, fiddle in hand?

Canwest close to collapse, CBC report

"Failing to find investors could lead to the collapse of the Winnipeg-based media empire and cost the Asper family control of the company founded by their late father, Israel Harold (Izzy) Asper, the newspaper states."

Hmmm.... Calamity or investment opportunity? Oh right, it's not election time. That narrows it down some.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Ontario hopes to create 50,000 Green jobs

I was reading along in the article linked below, thinking this sounds pretty good. Some good things in the overall intentions I would think, but coming to the end of the article there is discussion on eliminating coal fired electricity production by the end of 2014. How realistic is that?

Interesting position on potential complaints regarding locating of renewable energy sources;

"Premier Dalton McGuinty has warned activists and municipalities that the province won't tolerate any objections to new wind turbines or solar panel farms that aren't based on safety or environmental concerns."

It is also interesting how quickly some people will complain when wind farms etc. are located in their area. The Snow Bird song lady comes to mind as she was quite outspoken about how a development close to her Pictou County N.S. summer home was going to inconvenience her and lower her property values.

"They are imposing structures and not the sort of thing one would wants to see from a golf course," Murray wrote Tuesday in a commentary published in a Halifax newspaper.

" The turbines would generate 30 megawatts, enough power for about 15,000 homes. The development is proposed to be online in 2009."

The Gamblers


The link below is from one of Charles' posts, and it's quite extraordinary. I have yet to read something so comprehensive, yet easy to follow describing the current economic situation. I agree with a great deal of what is written here. What I don't agree with is the conclusions at the end, and the use of broad brush protectionism terminology. That is too frequently used in that manner, and does not address the equalization powers of fair trade and common sense. I will argue those points indefinitely. Taking into consideration the rest of the article, which is good as I have said, the concept of ploughing ahead as is regarding free trade is in itself the greatest counter argument to the overall points made in this article regarding failed globalization. My pointing out the 147% increase in ocean shipping rates substantiates my point of view, and that is also supported by the extraordinary amounts of fuel required, much of which comes from troubled regions, and concerns over global warming. Anywho, it's a long read but it's a very good one. Even CB could get into this as it discusses neoliberalism, marxism etc.

"Yet what if such a crisis were to be no longer confined to the peripheries of global capitalism but instead struck at its heartlands? Now we know the answer. The crisis has enveloped the whole world like an uncontrollable virus, spreading from the US and within a handful of months assuming global proportions, at the same time mutating with frightening speed from a financial crisis into a fully fledged economic crisis. In so doing, it has undermined the foundations on which the present era of globalisation has been built, namely scant regulation, the free movement of capital, a bloated financial sector and immense reward for greed, thereby bringing into question the survival of globalisation as we now know it."

And this, it becomes more current with every passing day;

Friday, February 20, 2009

Afghanistan, and The Crown of Thorns

I don't know exactly why I feel compelled to blog about this again, maybe because of Obama's visit and the message on Afghan I took from his words, or whether it's recent statements that not only display that it is far from decided what role Canada will play after 2011, but also that there is no clear obtainable objective at this time.

Few would put much stock in Harper's claims that the combat mission ends in 2011, Iggnatieff is all over the board with his statements, (big surprise) and Obama has indicated that date is not carved in stone as far as his admin is concerned. Further to that, both Iggster and Obama have made statements in recent weeks, seemingly confirming that there is no discernable mission parameters or objectives that can be clearly explained. I'm trying not to button hole these statements but will leave it to you to interpret what is in the links below. An excerpt;

"How would you like to be sent to a war, the point of which no one knows, including the commander-in-chief who sent you to kill or be killed?"

The first link is one of Charles' from another post, and starts off with economic issues then turns to discuss Afghan about half way through. Among other things, it discusses the US Military estimates of troops requirements to be in the vicinity of 650,000 in order to be effective. A far cry from the 60,000 Obama plans to employ, plus the Nato contingent.

Then there's the Igg. First the flip;

Then the flop;

I had a brief exchange recently with an Iggnatieff supporter and prominent blogger, who wrote about Igg's recent statement on Afghan saying "we are lost right now". The blogger was trying to put this forward as a positive questioning of the situation. I thought it an odd perspective given Igg's supposed level of knowledge in the areas of history and world affairs, so I engaged the blogger briefly. Once I had put forward an overview, some past, some present said blogger exiting stage left with due haste.

All of the news and opining out there right now is making me very uncomfortable. It's as if the entire scenario is being handled by people who don't understand it. People who can't correlate things like the Cambodia factor, the size and diversification of population from which the militants can draw. Their traditions, ignorance and the essence of their culture if that's what one wishes to call it. It's no less a culture than our version I suppose. Then there is the Religion, the Pakistani factor and a not so pleased Bear sitting above all this, watching and meddling whenever opportunities arise. Some payback and some tree scratching as well. For those who don't know, that's one of the things Bears do to mark there territory.

The reality is really quite simple. There will be no victory this way. Overcoming centuries of shifting loyalties, lawlessness by our standards, and Tribal mentality is not going to be accomplished by sitting in the Fort, and sometimes conducting forays into the wilds. They did that in Vietnam during the quiet times, and the North just used these periods to rearm, re-supply, rebuild and recruit.

There are 3 options, in reality. One, maintain the status quo (and that includes Obama's extra 30,000 troops) Two, fold your tents and get out. Three, give the military what they want and go to War.

With the first option, there will be no end in sight. The second is unnaceptable to the U.S. at this time. The third, in my opinion, would have fairly quick results. What those would be exactly, is difficult to assess given the possible variables, and perhaps even more difficult to contemplate.

For sure, everytime some crazy eyed whack job cuts the head off of a foreigner and posts it on youtube, they strengthen the resolve of the foreign occupiers. Besides that, they provide even more fodder for the proponents of the military solution. These are cowardly acts committed in the name of righteousness, and no thinking person is fooled by their rhetoric. Merciless gangsters commit acts like these. As they cry for Holy War, I would suggest they be careful what they wish for, given the state of the world at the moment.

They should also remember how fast their loyal allies can betray them. The Great Warriors so called, of that region fully understand the CYA principle, and their homegrown version of Capitalism too.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Outrageous! Or Business as usual?

First read this;

Then this;

From the Ministry of Good News (Sort of)

Something that is in short supply these days, is good news. I am forever watchful though. Here is some good, some not so good and some hope maybe. The following link is to a Bloomberg article that starts about the 147% increase in ocean transport costs this year (what did I say before?), then goes on to discuss how China's stimulus package is making many experts (aka Sperts) bullish on the Loonie, the Aussie and the Krone.

Without further ado, something somewhat hopeful for a change;

"Oil Rebound

China is the world’s biggest consumer of copper and iron ore and has helped each rally this year by about 10 percent, benefiting Australia and Canada, which account for 10 percent of world production of the two metals. Oil, Norway’s top export, will average $66 a barrel in the fourth quarter, up from an average of $40.62 since Jan. 1, according to the median forecast of 34 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. China is the world’s second-biggest energy user."

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Weirdosphere

(Momma told me not to go)

It seems this Kathy Shaidle and TVO story still has legs. Someone started a website to encourage Human Rights complaints, and they are off to the races. For your entertainment, I present a glimpse into the World of Weird. Beware the road kill and misc. Dead Animals.

For further amusement, click some of the blogger links. A certain Hilary J M White for example, is a definite flower of Moral influence. Not unlike Shaidle. Her blogs are Orwell's Picnic and something about early life.

Back to the Budget. Old I know, but at least it's our wish list.

Community Newspapers and Magazines, New Media Fund and Television Fund

All of these appear to have potential merit.

Sport is too big for me to analyze as it refers to $650 million for the 2010 Olympics and I don't know enough about the spins offs there.

Tourism I have written on some already, and think their direction is off the mark, especially investing in Historic sites, Campgrounds, and Cruise ship facilities. That's not going to alter the fortunes of the tourism operators significantly. Better to work with Domestic and International Airlines to offer deals on flights to Canada and with hospitality operators on package deals. Some really good ad campaigns too.

Utilizing existing tourism infrastructure to attract domestic and international interest would be more effective use of this money. Promoting currency advantage is another reasonable option. Looking into the traditional spiking of fuel prices during summer months is something else that would have a significant impact. If oil prices stay reasonably close to present levels, government efforts could keep this from becoming a deterrent like last summer. Getting on big oil now to push them toward responsive production levels and pricing will encourage activity rather than discourage it. A small temporary reduction in fuel taxes could be an incentive too.

Improving Canada's competition and Investment frameworks section isn't written in specific terms.

Environment and Green Energy Technology.

The focus there is clearly on carbon capture and is expanded to coal. Supposedly there is $1 Billion in new money for alternative energy but that is stretched over 5 years. The government claims this will result in $2.5 Billion total investment over that time frame.

The intent seems reasonable, the time frame too long and the amount short in my view.

On Nuclear, $351 million for the Candu reactors and Chalk River would seem a positive item.

Supporting Small Business

Raising the base amount eligible for reduced federal tax rate is ok, not earth moving though. As it represents total tax reductions of $45 million for 09/10, and $80 million for 10/11, it is very little. There appears to be an additional $240 million, some for assisting young persons create new businesses. The bulk of the remaining money is to go for information and advice plus create approx. 1000 positions for students entering this workforce.

Looks like opportunity for a lot of well paid advisors and consulting firms. I can see the pink of their snouts.

Helping all Regions to prosper will be next. In the meantime, here's the link that goes with this again.

This page from CBC has a great deal of budget related items as well if you haven't seen it yet. There is a section on the right with analyses.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Automotive trade deficit more than doubles

You might want to cover one eye before reading this;

Manufacturing takes steepest tumble on record, investment flows slosh homeward

"Meanwhile, the Canadian Auto Workers said 2008 was Canada's worst-ever year in trade of automotive products.

The union's analysis of Statistics Canada data found the automotive trade deficit more than doubled to almost $14 billion, from $6.6 billion in 2007."

Some doom and gloom from the World's 2nd largest economy

"There's no question that this is the worst recession in the post-war period," Economics Minister Kaoru Yosano told a news conference.

However, he struck a cautious note on large scale spending, saying the government could not get "addicted to pain killers".

Even though Japan has avoided much of the initial fallout from the U.S. credit and housing market meltdown, its economy contracted at an annualised rate of 12.7 percent -- three times the fall in the United States, at the epicentre of the global turmoil."

And in China there is much happy happy joy joy due to huge increases in credit availability. Well, some are happy.

Oh Canada, my home and increasingly dumbed down land.

I'm late getting into this discussion, because I tried to ignore it.

By now most have read something about the furor surrounding the singing of O Canada in a small school in New Brunswick. A place called Belleisle Elementary. Most Canadians would never have heard of this small rural area if it weren't for some folks causing a great clamor over the Principal of this school ending the daily singing of O Canada. And so it should have remained relatively unknown, but no... we have this element of Canadians who for some strange reason feel it necessary to focus their efforts based on misinformation and dim witted bias. Perhaps it's because they are so ill informed on matters of consequence, that this motivates them to sound off on inconsequential issues.

From my perspective, I just tried to ignore this assuming it would blow over in a flash. It didn't though, and became a poster issue of sorts in a number of ways. I received an email from the Green Party earlier which outlines the progression of this and I will post it under comments so as not to plug up the main page. Give it read and tell me what you think.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Steppenwolf's Monster; Is it timeless?

From memory;

America, where are you now?

Don't you care about your son's and daughter's?

Don't you know, we need you now?

We can't fight alone against the Monster.

The Grand Lady in waiting speaks to the Nation

Get ready, hold on.....

Was it good for you?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Tipping Point and the Power of Suggestion

Glancing at Garth's offering for the day, the Title of a book on his list caught my eye and I googled up some info. I thought this wiki entry worth pointing to encourage a bit of thought.

A number of items in the brief synopsis seem relevant to ongoing circumstances and how influencing the thinking of large groups of people is achieved. When I got to the part on Salesmen, a recent example came to mind. I was at a Wholesale Auto Auction recently and listened to the shyster owner/operator repeat two things again and again, in order to achieve maximum impact with the fewest words.

These were, "it's from the bank", and "a fresh trade in from new car store X". X being a specific new car GM store. I won't mention the name. You see, both of these things were intended to convey confidence and legitimacy. "The Bank", "fresh trade", "new car store". All intended to instill a false sense of confidence, especially considering the "As is, where is" terms of these sales.

I couldn't help smile a wry smile and think of the similarity to politics. BTW, I am an old hand at the Auto Auction game, so these things have no effect on me. Speaking of which, if the public who attends these Auctions knew half of the games played there and the background behind the business strategies, they wouldn't go if they were paid to.

But, ignorance is bliss.

More New World Order from the European Front

"ROME (AFP) - The world's richest nations called Saturday for urgent reform of global finance to save the world from the economic devastation that is dragging more and more countries into recession.

Italy's Finance Minister called for a "new world economic order" as he wrapped up the crisis meeting of finance leaders from the Group of Seven leading economies over which he presided here."

Your Daily Grimace. Romeo, Romeo, where for art thou Romeo?

Economic blues helps Cupid find online targets.

Oh Fair Maid, if it were not for the beauty of thine inner self, I shoudst whither and die. Btw, you do have a good job don't you?

"There may also be practical considerations as well, added Markus Frind, chief executive of

When times are tough people want to get together to share the rent (and) buy groceries together to save costs,"

I can see the Lawyers dancing in the streets. A Farming we will go, a Farming we will go, hi ho our bank accounts grow, a Farming we will go.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Speaking of the Enquirer, since when did TVO become an affiliate?

I don't know how many who pass through here are familiar with a Kathy Shaidle, aka Five Feet of Fury, but....if you are looking to check out the Far Right weirdosphere, her blog would be a good place to start . Apparently she is going to be a guest on a TVO production tonight, Steve Paikin's show. Apparently this is the second time they have had her on. As there is a minor uproar in the blog world about it, I thought I would give it a mention. I started to write this earlier, and she is on now as I write, and is representing religion against atheitism or something like that. Scott's Diatribes has a piece on her colorful blurts that is self explanatory.

Bill to scrap the Long Gun Registry

"Saskatchewan M.P. Garry Breitkreuz as he introduced a Private Members’ Bill to scrap the decade-old Canadian long-gun registry -- Bill C-301"

I support scrapping this. It's good for those interested in fetchin' squirril and sech...

One might notice that it's a private members bill, which of course means they aren't really serious. But we can spin our wheels on it for a while I suppose. More opportunity for the statesmen and statesladies to look stately.

Mr. Speaker...blah blah blah..

Canada tallies first trade deficit since 1976

"Statistics Canada reported Wednesday that merchandise imports exceeded exports by $458 million in December. "

Hmmm. I wonder if that Buy Canadian idea is looking any better right now?

There is a place in Quebec called St. Louis de Ha Ha. In Rome they have Joe the Pope

"Thursday's meeting marks the first face-to-face talks with Jewish leaders since the Pope revoked the excommunication of Bishop Richard Williamson, who has denied the full extent of the Holocaust.

Days before his rehabilitation was made public, Williamson was shown on Swedish state television saying historical evidence "is hugely against six million Jews having been deliberately gassed" during the Second World War.

The Pope's move to reinstate the bishop provoked widespread condemnation. The Pope has said he was unaware of Williamson's views when he decided to lift the excommunication."

Sure Joe, sure. I believe you. Haa Ha! They must have excommunicated the guy for wearing his funny hat backwards.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Brave New World

"The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario now has until 4 p.m. Thursday to decide if it will accept the deal, Wynne added.

The revised offer would give teachers a 10.4 per cent salary increase over four years, bringing the maximum salary to $92,700."

Smaller class size is also an issue. For those who don't live in Ontario, the class size was set at 22 some years ago.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

What do you say when offered 800 Billion more?

"This policy is just inadequate," said Chris Whalen, a managing director at financial research provider Institutional Risk Analytics. "The first quarter is just going to be grotesque for the banks - and then we're going to have to have this discussion all over again."

More Tonka Trucks please.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Insanity is Denying the Undeniable

Submitted by Poppavox (Robert)

Comrade, further on my opinion of the right President at the right time,.
While Canada took sole custody to it`s highest historical level ever Bush cut funding to the radical groups backed by the lawyers. While youth crime has been going down in the US ours has been accelerating with reports reported crime is as low as 1 in 7 and mischief up in Vancouver 39% in the latest reading, even after manipulating crime statistics.
On the other hand I was wrong about Obama being the right President as he`s now funding the same insanity that will cripple their next generation.
I have to add all in all it was for not anyway as the economic crunch along with the social crunch are now tandem, we accomplished nothing in the last tens years so I certainly am not objecting to your view of my opinion, just laying out what was a valid perspective till we wound up with a
President that hates families as much as the radical feminists.
MEXICO CITY, February 3, 2009
UNFPA representative Arie Hoekman, a leader in the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has declared that the breakdown of traditional families, far from being a "crisis," is actually a triumph for human rights.
Leonardo Casco told LifeSiteNews that he wasn't surprised that the UNFPA was denying the crisis in the family.
"They definitely have to deny that there is a crisis in the family, because they have created the crisis," he said.
Obama is pouring $4B into funding this while Canada like the United Nations Population Fund is in denial to the result to children. Next up, replacing family with daycare, Total Insanity.
"No woman should be authorized to stay at home to raise her children. Society should be totally different. Women should not have that choice, precisely because if there is such a choice, too many women will make that one." Simone de Beauvoir, author of _The Second Sex_, the book that is credited with launching the mainstream of the modern feminist movement ---
"Since marriage constitutes slavery for women, it is clear that the women's movement must concentrate on attacking this institution. Freedom for women cannot be won without the abolition of marriage." (radical feminist leader Sheila Cronan).

The Get Along Gang

During some of our recent round table economic discussions, heh....British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was discussed briefly and his comments on New World Order specifically. Apparently, Mr. Brown isn't the only card carrying member of the Get Along Gang. Membership to the Gang appears to be based on how badly one wants/needs to stroke Comrade Chin and his $2 Trillion in foreign exchange reserves.

Gots to Go Along, to Get Along.


Diplomats say China has still not forgiven the fund for introducing new currency surveillance rules in June 2007, at Washington's behest, that make it easier for it to determine whether a country is keeping its exchange rate fundamentally misaligned to boost exports.

Beijing objected to the rulebook, regarding it as a U.S. ploy to enlist the fund in its campaign for a stronger yuan."

As I wrote earlier, China simply does not want to play the game according to the rules. They have had their leg up with a low currency boosting their already huge wage advantage, but they just don't want to give up that currency advantage.

Then there are the feudal lords who are wielding their mighty mouths too..

Mr. Rogers says;

Moving to Asia now is like moving to New York City in 1907,” he said. Also, he is quoted to say: “If you were smart in 1807 you moved to London, if you were smart in 1907 you moved to New York City, and if you are smart in 2007 you move to Asia.

In an CNBC interview with Maria Bartiromo broadcast on May 5, 2008, Rogers said that people in Asia are extremely motivated and driven, and he wants to be in that type of environment so his daughters are motivated and driven. He said during that interview that, this is how America and Europe used to be.

Why move to Singapore and not Shanghai or Beijing?
ROGERS: Well, we would like to move to China, but the air is so terrible, the pollution is so bad, that we can’t bring ourselves to do it."

Yes Mr. Rogers, but it's ok for those extremely motivated and driven people. Wot?
I think that much of what Mr. Rogers says is indicative of the frame of mind of the very wealthy. Much of this is based on where the well off should invest, and the common denominator is availability of high levels of cheap labor. Plus no Unions, limited government controls on business, autocratic government and a willingness to abuse the environment. When he does refer to environment, it's from an investment/money making view. Also telling is his statements on owning investments for 30 years and hoping to own them for another 30. Cryostacis maybe? As Austin Powers would say, "yeah baby".

The article above is entitled, "tobefree". I suggest a world free of his kind would be a better place.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Nortel's top Execs got $400 million. Nice work if you can get it.

The story says more than $365 Billion in share value vanished between 2000 and 2008.

About feral dogs, shotguns and strarving mauraders

"Strolling through the business section at Chapters the other day, I noticed that we’re all going to die. And soon.

Well, I suppose not all of us. I don’t want to be alarmist."

Holy cow Batman!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to a Comrade

I am hesitant to share personal emails, as I am wired to loyalty and such abstract concepts. I hope what I write doesn't betray the confidence of an Internet friend. No less a friend in our times.

Charlesius I, and Comrade extraordinaire has informed me via 2 emails that his health isn't serving him well. Out of respect for his privacy, I won't add details, but will once again wish for him the best, and offer the thought that this world is a better place with his wisdom and enthusiasm.

For you Charles, if you hear this. A small token of appreciation for who you are, what you have been, and what you continue to contribute.

Against the Wind.

Friday, February 6, 2009

This item shall remain untitled as I couldn't think of something appropriate without much swearing.

Harper decrees his watch probably the most important in the History of Canada.

“He called the budget probably the most important in the country's history.”

I wonder how much this is going to cost the citizens of Canada? You know, the other Nation.

Caisse lost $38-billion in 2008: report


Friday, February 06, 2009

OTTAWA — Canada's biggest pension-fund manager, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, lost a staggering $38-billion last year, mainly because of falling stock prices, La Presse reported on Friday.

No wonder Sarkozy told the "Quebec" separatists to STFU. In so many words.

To cap your evening, and leave you with the sweet smell of roast pork to titillate your senses.

Conservative ridings get 78% of Infrastructure funding.

Is there anything making sense right now?

Miners and financials lead broad gains in Toronto, says the headliner on the TSX web page. Umm, we just lost 129,000 jobs in a month, just about all of them good ones, and these marketeers bet some more. Based on the bailouts maybe? Some short term paper profits there? I dunno, it doesn't make sense.

Another headline says Bushco wasted 78 Billion on the financial industry with his hurry up bail out. And yet the TSX is up 155 points as I write and US markets are up 188 points.

Meanwhile oil is down to $39 again and pump prices went up again 2 days ago. Futures contracts, misreading the future, disapearing excess inventories sitting in tankers and profits for the greatest gougers of them all. Yup, makes sense to me. Demand, that greatest evil of all has fallen, the price of a barrel of oil, then next biggest evil of all has tanked, and yet......the pump price goes up again. It was 95 cents a litre for diesel at the pump yesterday. FOR DIESEL! A ruddy by product. Oh yes, that's because of all those folks buying diesel jettas and the like. According to the lying oil companies that is.

So now we pay for all those developments that are no longer economically viable. Kind of like paying for a mortgage of $300,000 on a house that's now worth $240,000. Only in the end, you will own the house, but not the tar sands nor the rest of the expensive projects made necessary by ever expanding policies of shipping crap all over the Continent and the world that we didn't need in the first place.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Obama wants salary cut for many US executives

"Critics said the move could prompt talented executives to flee companies that fall under the guidelines.

"One size fits all has never worked. It is an understandable effort but it is a dangerous one," said Mark Poerio, partner at law firm Paul Hastings.

"If you have someone who was making well over $1 million, and now they are capped at $500,000, it is very conceivable that they are going to look to go to a company that is not subject to those limitations."

Ok, imagine this; profitable company conducts interview of executive from failing, bailed out company.

HR guy says;
and what makes you think you are the best person for the job and are worth $1 million annually?

Bailout guy says;
well my record of superior management and experience of course.

HR guy;
do you think you can accomplish the same for us?

Bailout guy;
which do you mean? Lose your company $2.3 billion in a single quarter or get you a $25 Billion bailout?

More Budget. He stuck in his thumb, and pulled out a plum..

and said, "What a smart boy am I!"

The Automotive Industry

Phew! This one's a whopper. It really doesn't look like the Government knows what is going on here or what will happen anymore than the rest of us do. They seem to be talking more broad strokes as they want to deal with everything from available credit to consumers to buy more new shiny things, to offering up assistance to parts manufacturers etc.

Considering the timing of rumors coming from the CAW about GM possibly pulling out of Canada altogether and references in the budget to offering assistance to other sectors of the Auto Industry, GM may not be pleased with it's prospects.

Considering the following section, one has to wonder about some flags;

"In addition, the Government will create the $12-billion Canadian Secured Credit Facility, announced earlier in this chapter. This facility will improve credit availability for consumers to purchase and lease new vehicles."

I am wondering if all this is simply targeted at providing funding to clean up the mistakes made, and lack of foresight of the Big Three. Also, if it serves to aid them to continue on their current path of production. In other words, to clean up existing inventories and provide a stop gap measure to allow them to return to business as usual without any significant emphasis on new development of energy efficient products. All of that making the taxpayer the bag holder of the North American Industries poor judgment.

Without addressing these things, there are no guarantees of significant change, and no recourse. If the current pattern doesn't reverse on it's own within the next year or two, what guarantee is there that this crisis won't return?

The immediate need is unarguable, but how this is approached overall will determine the measure of success or failure.

Canada's Space Industry

This seems like a wise move given that this has been a successful area, and it addresses current and forward thinking.

Ditto on Cultural Infrastructure and other items related to Arts/Culture.

More later as time allows..

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Canada a desired location for Guantanamo Bay detainees.

The World around us just gets curiouser and curiouser.

Here is what one commenter on the CBC site had to say about this;

"I would accept them only on the basis of a "terrorist Exchange" program.

We take the GITMO terrorists in exchange, they take CUPE."

Well Well, someone said the P word and now Harper is all in a titter.

Here's the problem; Someone speaks on an issue that appears to confuse and befuddle Harper/Dimster, so they bundle up the topic in simplistic terms that they can understand, and thus in their minds, Canadians can understand, then repeat repeat infinitum or at least until it goes away.

Perhaps I should have entitled this piece ad infinitum. As defined in Wikipedia;

"Great fleas have little fleas upon their backs to bite 'em,And little fleas have lesser fleas, and so ad infinitum.And the great fleas themselves, in turn, have greater fleas to go on,While these again have greater still, and greater still, and so on."

Ok, this is what I am on about; Jack Layton said Canada should pursue a Buy Canadian strategy, and Harper immediately branded this as "trade war". How very ingenious of him and how typical too. One liner slogans are his specialty afterall. Anything more than that, well you know... Even when given a road map with X marks the spot, this guy still couldn't find his way home.

There is nothing wrong with a campaign to encourage Canadians to buy Canadian. It neither infringes on so called, free trade agreements, nor does it attack the spirit of them. They remain intact and unincumbered. I do this type of thing myself, by my own choice and due to the simple fact that I have made an effort to educate myself somewhat on what is a Canadian company and what is not, plus paying some attention to things like labeling, I am able to make some choices that favor Canadian companies, and ULTIMATELY, the Canadian economy and job market to some small degree.

Could someone please explain to Harper and his people that there is power in numbers outside of the ballot box? C.C. that to Mr. Irrelevant too. That would be Ignatieff.

The link below is to a CBC article and the comments expand on this issue. What have we come to when Jack Layton is the one making sense? I touched on another idea that is in keeping with this yesterday in my attempt to make some sense of the strategies driving the latest budget, particularly in regard to the area of Capital Cost Allowance changes, and this all fits together. Even under free trade agreements, Countries have the right to direct public money to be spent within the Country so why not at least exercise our options?

Protectionist fears such as this will only serve to hurt our economy. America isn't going to pay any attention to the Canadian government encouraging it's Citizens to buy Canadian. It is not significant in proportion to their economy. It is in relation to the size of ours though. Besides that, most of what they buy from us, they do so because of competitive cost structure and/or sheer need as with energy and resources.

Instead of running from every issue that Harperites think may upset America, be smart. Rub their belly's some too. Put some emphasis on giving Industries we have shared interest in some prime time as well. The North American Auto Industry for instance. There is a great deal of misunderstanding regarding that industry among many Canadians, and many don't grasp how important and integral it is in this Country. Yes, they have made a lot of mistakes. Now is the time to reflect upon those things, reorganize and move ahead.


Like minded thoughts.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

German pope becomes an embarrassment in homeland

Some more on the Pope. Seems I'm not the only one who thinks he is a bubble off plumb.

More Budget

On to the Environmental section and more.

The section on Clean Energy is vague so I can't analyze it.

Reporting on environmental indicators isn't specific either. Seems well intended, but who knows?

The area on Nuclear Energy appears somewhat targeted and a sound approach if one is a proponent of Nuclear, and does acknowledge issues related to Chalk River.

Basically, this section appears in keeping with the general interest level regarding environmental issues of this Government. That's not praise.

Supporting Small Business

There is nothing bad in this, but depending on what is actually done will determine if this has any significant impact. The indicated increased availability of credit to small business could have a real impact, but there is no indication as to criteria or the total amounts available.

The rest isn't negative, but isn't going to move any mountains.

Helping all Regions Prosper

Providing more than $1 billion over five years for a Southern Ontario development agency to help workers, communities and businesses in this region. ($250 million per year, better than nothing I suppose. )

The next item; Providing $1 billion over two years for a Community Adjustment Fund that will help mitigate the short-term impacts of restructuring in communities. This in conjunction with the previous item could have real value, depending on whether it is actually new money, or a continuation of money previously announced, as is often the case.

A Business Tax Advantage for Long Term Prosperity

Here is a meat and potatoes item, where ideologies divide. The main concerns should be tax fairness, and applying incentives where they would do the most good. Particularly for the next few years. I understand what the Conservatives are trying to do, and am not ideologically opposed to a 25% overall tax rate target for businesses/corporations, but their is no equity or fairness in this approach as it provides a tax ceiling for corporations but not for individuals. So again, it favors corporations. Given our times, I don't think competitive countries are going to be slashing corporate taxes a whole lot, so here, why now?

I like Garth's idea better where tax on the first $50,000 for small business is eliminated. This would be a great help to small business and would encourage many to work for themselves. It's not like there would be no taxes paid on that money, as most owners of these small businesses would draw the majority of that in personal income and pay taxes based on personal rates. But hey, big Corporations wouldn't like that, would they?

The next item I disagree with is the idea of all provinces using harmonized consumption tax. For those who don't live in a Province with harmonized sales tax, you might not realize how many items there are that you only pay one tax on, while those who live in Provinces who have this system pay both taxes on those items. Used vehicles jumps out at me first. This gives both levels of government the opportunity to tax these items multiple times. And that my friends is no small amount of change. We live in a country where owning a vehicle is not optional for most and this is just another means of taxing ordinary citizens, while at the same time favoring large profitable corporate entities, and attracting more based on a lesser share of the tax burden.

If a 78 to 80 cent dollar isn't a sufficient advantage for these corporations, then perhaps governments should look at ways to assist businesses to lower expenses related to fixed costs. I would suggest personal income taxes first. If anyone doesn't think that the amounts that come off a person paycheck is part of their employers fixed costs, they should reconsider that thinking. It is simple really, people's wage requirements are based on net income, not gross income. The point is, the gross income is the fixed cost for the business, and if that is lowered by virtue of an income tax reduction, then businesses can reduce their overall payroll costs without affecting net income for their employees. The result is a saving for business. Thus, the competitive environment for businesses improves, people's real income stays the same, and economic activity should increase every bit as much as if this competitive advantage were created with a tax cut for corporations. In fact, it would be a much more fair approach, as it would offer this advantage to all sizes of business, even proprietary businesses. You know, like Joe the Plumber? Both approaches would result in less revenue for government, but the resulting spin offs would be far more applicable to Canadian citizens, would be a much more direct boost to the economy and the resulting economic advantages or gains would be far easier to control as opposed to corporate profits. Government doesn't have control over where that goes.

Capital Cost Allowance

The changes here are not so much a bad idea, but that they are not targeted properly. The total sum involved here over the next 5 years is approx. $1.8 Billion, or nearly $400 million per yr. It appears there is no criteria or requirements regarding directing any of these monies toward Canadian firms, suppliers, manufacturers etc. It appears to be at the sole discretion of the participants. This of course deals somewhat with the free trade, fair trade ideologies, but there are other ways of attaching conditions to maximize benefits within Canada. Such as commitments to new purchases of equal dollar amounts from Canadian sources. These would not have to be the specific items targeted here, but anything from office supplies to building materials. As is, these proposals have a bit of an aura of, if you build it, they will come.

Tariff relief on Machinery and Equipment

"Budget 2009 will also take steps to facilitate the movement of goods by improving the Customs Tariff rules respecting the treatment of temporarily imported cargo containers, and undertake consultations with respect to further liberalizing the use of these containers in Canada."

Whuzzat? What are they up to there? And who will benefit?

Sectoral Competitiveness

First section on Short term support for key sectors says nothing.


Some good things there, but the amounts to be spent seem a bit sparse.


Some good thing there, some things that are vague particularly slaughterhouse capacity. Something worth watching. They do seem to be acknowledging that there are other interests to be considered and encouraged other than the monopolies. Particularly in the area of co-operatives.


Looks ok, but without details nothing of much value can be said about that.

That's it for now. I'm putting the Ouji board and crystal ball back in cupboard for a rest. Next up is the Automotive and Space Industry. All Cadets welcome!

Monday, February 2, 2009

An article entitled "Squeezed"

This is the article that both myself and Wayupnorth referred to. It is a good read and is thought provoking.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Citizens, lend me your ears. Part two.

This wouldn't post in it's entirety, so I had to break it up. I'm not complaining really, you get what you pay for.

Part two

I would never wish the hardships of economic destruction and hopelessness on anyone, but if it is to come; if this calamity isn’t what I think it is, a staged event, then I look to the future and what good can be achieved from the remnants, from the ashes. What I would wish for is to see a sense of purpose and a sense of individual empowerment return to the Citizens of Western Cultures. Hopefully a yes we can mindset would provide replacements for apathy and despair. New options for lost hopes, and mending broken souls instead of drugs, alcohol, stuff, hate and indiscriminate violence. Ending the days of those who would set human against human, countrymen against countrymen for their own mad ends.

A final thought on this for now. I don’t want readers to think that I believe all Civil Servants are the same. Some political representatives as well. Certainly, not all are
bad, nor should they be categorized as such. Some are very decent and conscientious. My gripe is with the many who aren’t, and their influence on others who eventually follow their example. I believe that if we the People stood up and helped the good People to overcome the status quo, many would stand up and be pleased to help with restructuring.

It all has to begin with a Revolution. Hopefully, a quiet, bloodless political Revolution. A Ghandi Revolution.

After I wrote my latest Sermon, I came across an article that is in keeping with many of my thoughts, experiences and things I have written over the past year and half. I believe it to have been written by someone younger and less experienced than myself, but a better writer than I. Someone who might well make a wonderful Comrade. I will post it next. So many things to say, so little time. So few who will ever hear.

Citizens, lend me your ears. Part one.

I read the Obama update provided by Comrade Herb, and it got me to writing. I wanted to continue for a bit with my speech from the Throne. Last post. (for those following along who don't always catch my obtuse sense of humour, my Throne is the toilet)

Here's the thing. We are a wreck. The wreck has been caused by fiscal mismanagement at many levels, and participation in aiding the haves, to have it all. This will be a short version. In times such as these, even many of the Noveau Riche come to understand what I am about to blather on about.

Here comes some of the things that make me a Centrist. Please remember that a Centrists views should encompass aspects from the larger sphere of the political, social and economic spectrum.

I disagree with government gone wild, and the realities that this brings into the lives of ordinary people. The main characteristic is that bloated bureaucracy loses sight of who it serves, and the concept under which it began. In fact, it turns it around 180 degrees and makes the People serve the government and it's agents. Some of its agents then procure a Union to serve them, which in time turns this 180 degrees. In the end, it is the citizens who suffer. I am not anti Union, again I plead Centrist in my defense.

I have had sufficient experience with government agencies to make the statements that they are paid substantially more than private enterprise counterparts, receive superior benefits and are entitled to retire far earlier. Additionally, their productivity levels are inferior and time off work for various reasons exceeds that of private enterprise.

PLUS, they have virtually absolute job security. Regardless of how useless they may be. Once the probationary period is over, we is stuck with them. Something that is not enjoyed in private enterprise, especially small business. Again, in short, their allegiance is bought and paid for.

I ask these questions, not expecting anyone to answer, what is it that makes these Servants of the People special? What sets them apart and elevates them from their private enterprise counterparts?

Speak to me O Great Gods of Civil Service and Government. Explain it. No one will of course, as it's one of those things people in high places just don't talk about. Not publicly anyway.

Moving on to the next priority item. Lobbyists and corporate influence. As we are now seeing clearly, these entities and government are directly related and hold a system based on socialism in reserve for their use only. I have written about this before, but on a smaller scale. Now it is so huge, it can't be denied or spun.

Experience tells me that just replacing senior managers in either government or corporate environments is not going to fix the ills. I say this because it doesn't take long before the cancer of doing as little as possible while still enjoying the perks, spreads to the new participants as well. So what do we do?

Ah, that's what I was fine-tuning on the Throne this morning.

Before going further, I should reiterate that in order for people to firstly sit up and pay attention, and secondly for real change to have a snowballs chance in hell of coming to pass, one thing has to happen first. People have to hurt really really bad. Otherwise, as Comrade Herb has said, it will just be business as usual.

This is another prerequisite; this economic calamity isn't the result of a master plan. If it is, they will back off before the tipping point. Once the majority of their overall goals have been achieved. Those being, making people thankful for their jobs and not being so demanding. Dropping wages and increasing competition for the jobs that are available and thus driving pay scales down. Making shit piles of money on the backs of the unwise and those not astute. And laying the groundwork to make a shit pile more with minimum interference from do gooders. Again short version. I'm trying to be brief and not lose anyone.

Ok, assuming this economic upheaval is not a master plan, then on to Comrades fix. Even if it is, this is what needs to happen.

First, the Revolution. Nothing will change until the people in control are changed, and that will happen only once the system of choosing candidates and effectively controlling campaigns is changed.

Second, the head of government has to make clear their intent to clean up the mess, and take out the garbage, starting with leading by example. I have done this before, and I know it can work. It's a matter of being free of ties to big money/parties and free to serve the People. The Key begins there. Serve the People, not the People serving the elite.

How does one go about that most would ask? Scornfully, and with disdain in most cases. Let me tell you.
You start with cleaning House. The House. The House of Parliament, Government, its agents and its affiliates. (Told you they would hate me.) You lead by example. And you employ a lot of bodyguards.

Again, a short version but I will expand if anyone is interested. First thing you do is cut a minimum of 20% off of operating costs in the House and in Government. Less ministers, less senators, smaller expense accounts AND..demand personal accountability. All the way down the line. From the minister to the deputy to his staff to the department. You initiate an austerity program in government and address the cost of government support services. Including the unions. Good business people, managers and bean counters would be able to do this. It starts with the auditor general's department and common sense.

The first thing though, is to lead by example. Bring down the costs of High government by the minimum I mentioned, and then issue a challenge with teeth. Change the game so that those who don't keep pace pass on into the next dimension.

Next would be the corporate world and tackling blatant greed and disregard for the health of the Nation. Again with teeth. These things would not be for the timid, but would result in pushing the reset button. Those caught for significant crimes against the Nation and the People would face very stiff consequences. So stiff, that it would deter and in time virtually end such behaviour.

As time went on, and people came and went, the overall mindset would change for the better and funds would be freed up for a better and more responsive society. And the sense of entitlement would go the way of John Manley's business card from the hand of Stephane Dion.


Lest we forget. 108

"A Canadian soldier was killed by a roadside bomb Saturday near Kandahar city, the military reported.

Sapper Sean David Greenfield, 25, was a combat engineer based in Petawawa, Ont."

At the going down of the sun and in the morning. We will remember them.