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Topics - Croghan27

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1
News / been to Orlando lately?
« on: July 09, 2011, 03:47:51 AM »
For a while there stories about how it was illegal to feed street people in Orlando was all over the 'net. It seems to have died down now, but lately I came across this video.
 
I sent it to a friend (or at least she was a friend, then) that lives in Orlando. She sent this back:
 
Quote

 "Disgusting. OPD is doing their job, enforcing laws. This issue is NOT
about  feeding the homeless. It's a group that's trying to gain political clout
by  creating a fake issue and breaking the law to do so. Lake Eola has long been
one  of the parks that I take my family to. At one point, I stopped going there
 because of a large population of homeless people who were often drunk, high,
 mentally ill, exposing themselves, and literally HARASSING people for money. I
 had a man try to spit on me and my infant because I wouldn't give him money. I
 didn't feel safe there anymore and stopped going. The city took measures to
 ensure that the homeless people had shelters and places to receive food,
 clothing, and medical care for those who wanted it. The homeless are fed, in
 many different areas, by people who follow the laws and get licenses to do so.
 Ensuring that health, safety, and sanitary conditions for them that are
required  by law. Lake Eola is once again a safe place for families to go.
Mocking the  police department, who is enforcing the law, is disgusting to me.
These men and  women put their lives on the line every day in a city that has
become one of the  most violent in the country, with one of the highest
transient populations.  Mocking them, isn't remotely humorous."

2
The philosophical and the spiritual / on racism ....
« on: July 08, 2011, 09:03:57 AM »
Some thoughts:
 
Last week a friend from university passed away, she had been my wife's roomate and they shared an apartment before our marriage. She was black - one of the intellectual leaders of the black community in Saint John.
 
Her younger sister, in the early 70's, was a HS student in SJ and Huckleberry Finn was on the reading curriculum. There is a character in the book who's name is "nigger Jim" - she found that highly insulting. As I remember the reaction of the school authorities was at first rather clumsy, of the "Read it kid, and shut up, you don't understand the subtilities of great art." variety. She persevered knowing when she had been racially slighted, despite what the board thought.
 
The NAACP now took note and they complained to the board - more effectively they made the situation public. After some heated debate the book was moved from the 'active' part of the reading list, those that could be part of any testing, to the optional list.
 
The problem here is that a book containing offensive term was still on the cirrculum. That she was given the option of inserting another book did nothing to solve this.
 
As I recall, Caissa may be more familiar with the ins and outs of this, the local Rabbi was asked to investigate and report on the situation. (At the time, and even yet, I felt sympathy for the poor man, inserted into a very touchie situation he really had no specific part in, even if fighting racism is a common responsibility) There was no need for my sympathy, he produced a  report that blew me away for it's reasonableness, intelligence and sensitivity.
 
The conclusion he reached was that racial slurs lie in the 'eye' of those slurred. If the student found the 'n' word insulting and was backed up by the NAACP, then it IS a racial epithet. The school board has no business mandating a student be subjected to what they see as an insult, or even limiting their educational options replacing it. The definition of the racial insult being up to the members of the race, not the school board nor anyone else for that matter.
 
notes:
 
1) There are now many instances of how communities have delt with charged epithets. The now world wide 'slut walks' being one, or the proactive actions of the LGBT community that has taken 'fag' and 'queer' from being insults to descriptions. It is worth remembering that no one has a problem with the 'Queer' part of QuAIA.
 
2) These thoughts came about from reading the thread about the CPCCA. I am not sure how the good Rabbi's conclusion apply in this case - it seems to me that this "committee" was formed as stats about anti-semitism were declining and is more about politics and PR than  substance.

3
Politics / Proportional Representation
« on: May 03, 2011, 05:18:37 PM »
FWIW
A response I put in at Dr. Dawg's. As close as I get to a blog.
 
I forgot the observation that everyone forgot the profound conservatism in New Brunswick. The Cons gain 6 seats from traditional Liberal ridings.
 
 Some random thoughts .....  If we had the American system then Harper would rule the House (here, the HofC)) the Senate (here, he just stacked it) and we altready have a damn near Presidential system. Our only saviour from that may be the traditional fractiousness of the Conservatives).
 
24% of adult Canadians voted for Harper ... but that means less that 24% voted of all other parties combined. Suck it up.
 
The Liberals lost because they did not offer an alternative to Harper - at least when Jack supportd Harper he got something for it. (like Douglas, Lewis, and Broadbent before him with various governments). The Liberals did not know how to make Opposition. 
 
One of the worst things that could have happened to the NDP is if it should have had to form a government. They just do not have the experience in place - the Cons did have experience, from the Mulroney years, and they still made juvenile mistakes. The learning curve would be too steep (see Rae in Ontario) A while as official opposition is not bad thing.
 
PR has twice been put out to the voters, in ON. and BC - and twice rejected, live with it. (for now)
 
While PQ voters may no long support Nationalists - they will, and always have, supported, 'Quebec Exceptionalism' - they just ain't like the RoC.
 
(response to a previous comment) The NDP is a "bourgeois liberal party "????  DUH!  When has it not been a bourgeois liberal party? Once the Regina Manifesto was dropped (and that was more bluster than blueprint) it became apparent that is what it is .... but it is the best we have - people can live and live well under democratic or modified socialism.
 
Now - the SOX won last night, but so did the (dreaded) Yankees ..... Talk to me no more of politics until the end of the month when Parliament gets to incite my indignation once again.
"Prayer without action is no prayer at all."
Mother Teresa.

4
News / We are all cheeze heads now .....
« on: February 18, 2011, 04:13:27 PM »
Democracy Now has a piece on the turmoil in Wisconsin caused by the Gov. Scott Walker's attempts to destroy the unions.
 
The Republican exempted the Police and Fire fighter's unions from the bill.
 
No one knew how these exempted people would react until .... as thousands stood in front of the legislature building the Fire Fighters came a-marching in, lead by a band of pipes ......
 
There was not a dry eye in the cheering crowd.
 
 

5
Environment / Messages from the oil patch .......
« on: January 19, 2011, 06:05:21 PM »
A  good buddy George* used to play in various piano bars in and about Alberta. He introduced me to this song .... OTOH. - sing out it, Randy. (George would add his own lyrics that modesty forbids me to reproduce here.)
 
Having been involved in one way of another in the oil industry for 35 or so years I still have some links (literally) with the industry. Thought it may be useful for the good folks here if I posted some of the thoughts of the industry. They will be from international publications and reflect what is happening, what the thinking is and some of the strategies.
 
They are bought and paid for industrial magazines .. and much is commercial in nature.
 
To start off here is one from OIL WORLD .... I cannot copy and paste anything but the main titles ... but here is an article about deep underwater drilling.
 
If you have a problem accessing it, let me know.
 
George got into a car accident on his way to Vancouver for a gig. He lost an arm .... not much call for a one armed piano player ....I have since lost track of him. It is impossible for me to hear this song without thinking of George.

6
Environment / things we are using up and cannot be replaced ...
« on: January 15, 2011, 08:39:40 AM »
The big one here is, of course, oil ..... the whole 'peak oil' idea is that we are in the declining days of available oil to be used as a fuel.
 
Now we have another shortage on the horizon. Helium!
 
Yes, that funny gas that make you quack like a duck .... floats party balloons and  dirigibles, and even makes it to Burger King ( :confused ) commercials. Well that is going too.
 
As for all else the driver in this is economic ..... it is so cheap as to be uneconomical to recycle - so we are literally blowing it off.
 
We all know that our sun is but a huge helium generator .... turning hydrogen into helium through fusion (heavier elements come from more massive stars) - well so far we cannot do that, so when he use up what is available .....the game is over for helium.
 
Here is a story in British Independent about the shortage.  There is a list of things that helium is used for at the end of the article.
 
Wonder how many other things we are using up that cannot be replaced?  :confused

7
Health / condom commercials ....
« on: November 28, 2010, 10:19:49 PM »
Maybe not for the staid of heart ... but it has it's moments. Were this to appear on Canadian TV someone would lose their license.
 
God bless the French. (and keep the safe)  ::)
 
 

8
Broad Shoulders / can't get into usual memorials threads ....
« on: September 27, 2010, 06:17:27 PM »
Quote
ALAMEDA, Calif. -- George Blanda, the seemingly ageless Hall of Fame   quarterback and kicker whose 26-year career was best remembered for a   remarkable run of late-game theatrics with the Oakland Raiders, has died. He was 83

Back in pre-history, just as I discovered the beauty of football, George Blanda was just finishing up his career in the NFL. By then he was too old to regularly play in a contact position, and so was a kicker.

I believe he still holds the record for the longest field goal, 63 yards. That is not a trivial as it seems - in the American game the defense lines up off the ball. (The CFL has a yard between the lines.)

I heard Alex Karras (Mongo from Blazing Saddles to you :annoyed ) tell of being a defensive lineman for the kick). The defense had never heard of anything so outrageous as the attempt and were busy laughing as Blanda kicked. They were mesmerized as it sailed through the air and between the uprights. 

Thank you George for helping to introduce me to a life time of appreciation.

9
Libraries, Archives, and Resources / DAYZ ....
« on: September 07, 2010, 07:01:26 AM »
This is the first in a series of posting on what day is this?

There are so many days, these days that maybe a new thread is needed to accommodate them all.

The Public Service keeps me up-to-date on some of them.

Here is #1 - if someone can come up with others post 'em.

Quote
Linguistic Duality and Diversity Week at PWGSC
Last September, the   Clerk of the Privy Council announced that Linguistic Duality Day would   be celebrated every year on the second Thursday of September across the   public service. Linguistic duality is a good reason to celebrate,   especially because our Department was the initiator of this event in   2007. We should be proud!

We are very pleased to announce that   our third celebration of Linguistic Duality Week at PWGSC will take   place from September 7 to 10, 2010, and its theme will be "Linguistic   Duality: Experience It!"

This year, we have taken the initiative   of integrating the concept of diversity. The event is now called   Linguistic Duality and Diversity Week. The theme Diversity Includes You   invites us to embrace our differences, since we are all unique parts of   this rich cultural mosaic. Linguistic Duality and Diversity Week is an   opportunity to raise employees' awareness of the importance and value of   working in an inclusive work environment that reflects the Canadian   population.

Once again, interesting activities have been planned for the week across the Department.

Together,   celebrating Linguistic Duality and Diversity Week reminds us that we   are working for a Department that promotes the use and respect of both   official languages, as well as diversity.

François Guimont
Deputy Minister

Andrew Treusch
Associate Deputy Minister

10
Exercise & Sports / This is a sport????
« on: August 26, 2010, 10:15:36 AM »
Ontario has approved Mixed Martial Arts for public consumption.
The Canadian Medical Association is ....less than excited about the idea: the Canadian Medical Association annual conference in Niagara Falls   endorsed a resolution calling on provincial governments to ban   professional MMA.

As for me, I agree with Charles Pierce who speaks of this 'sport' thus:
Quote
I wouldn't walk across the street to see this UFC extravaganza at the   Garden on Saturday. I wouldn't go if you gave me tickets. I wouldn't   take a free luxury box if it came equipped with a seven-course banquet,   an open bar, and entertainment that looked like the last reel of Caligula.   The whole thing is coarse, savage, and says things about the popular   culture that I'd rather not know, thanks. Whoever called it cockfighting   was being insulting to farm animals, or speaking metaphorically. I'd   just as soon not guess which.

11
Canada / Toronto and Ford ....
« on: August 20, 2010, 09:38:16 PM »
Tranna is about to have a municipal election ..... the most common headlines I see are how this Rob Ford has transgressed somewhere, somehow.

He has bullied children (in a situation as far as I can tell that was part of a sentence of community service), been arrested for driving drunk, possession of drugs and now some integrecy commissioner is jumping into the action.

The stories also mention that he leads the list of possible Mayor by a substantial majority.

Eh? HUH? With out beginning a conflict between the Bread caucus and the Roses delegation of Bread&Roses, can someone explain this to me ....

It has been a some time since I have been to T.O. and matters must have progressed without me.  :crying

12
Media / odd email this morning from TruthOut.
« on: August 10, 2010, 09:00:45 AM »
I subscribe to several 'news aggregates': AlterNet, TruthOut and Reader Supported News being three big (American) ones.

This AM I got an email from the founder and several others of Truthout. I am not quite sure how to view it .... maybe some other opinions from the good folks here would help.

It is a bit long, so to conserve time you may just want to read a couple of the letters ....they all say similar things.
Here it is (if it fits); OOPs - it does not fit, so I deleted some of the longer letters ....
Quote
These are the statements of 7, 6, 5 former Truthout employees who lost their jobs under circumstances that we feel were unjust.


Quote
Statement: Founder, Former Executive Director and Truthout Board President Marc Ash
Why We Oppose the New Truthout Management
I   am  Truthout's original founder. I started the project in a converted   garment loft in downtown LA a few blocks from the Staples Center where   the Democratic National Convention was playing out in August of 2000. I   was an Al Gore volunteer and I thought the main-stream-media reporting   was flat-out corrupt. I believed I could start a news agency. My cat had   confidence in me, but not many others did. I thought of the name   "Truthout," registered the domains Truthout.org, Truthout.com and   Truthout.net, designed the logo, the graphics, the site, the whole   thing. Until Scott Galindez began supporting my efforts - both of us as   volunteers I might add - I was functioning alone.
Our   goals were simple: provide a candid, frank, and unvarnished view of key   events that impact all of our lives ... to get the "Truthout." As many   of you are aware, Truthout grew to become an organization that  would employ at it's peak  33 workers and serve a quarter of a million readers daily. Funded almost   entirely on grants and small donations from you, our readers.
In   September of 2009 I resigned as Truthout's Executive Director and board   president in protest over the hostile atmosphere towards me by a small   group of union organizers and the other board members. I am a union   supporter. I know what it is like to lose my job for speaking out in   favor of a union. It happened to me. I was not in favor of the proposed   union at Truthout. My opposition was based mostly on distrust of the   motives of the organizers. My fear was the control of Truthout was the   goal of the union organizers, not the wellbeing of Truthout's workers.   As you will read below in the statements of my co-workers, my worst   fears were confirmed.
Officially   I came under attack because  of my  salary. To the point, I averaged 140K in annual salary and benefits over   my 8 1/2 years as the head of the organization I founded. For the first   18 months I supported the organization out of my earnings as a fashion   photographer, graphic artist and public relations consultant. By 2008   Truthout was providing jobs to 33 workers and I was earning, with   benefits, roughly 220K. During my tenure no Truthout worker was ever   laid off, no salary ever reduced for economic reasons. In 2008 I took   three pay cuts, expressly to avoid laying off staff or cutting salaries.   I was determined to protect the welfare of Truthout's employees, and I   succeeded in doing so.
Prior   to my resignation Truthout offered me a 100K annual salary to remain   with the organization, I declined and started Reader Supported News   without any pay whatsoever. We have, however, been fortunate enough to   be able to put almost all of the  Truthout workers  who lost their jobs back to work with RSN.
I   honestly believe that the organization Scott and I built has come to be   coveted as - for lack of a better word - a possession, and I truly   worry what will become of Truthout. One former Truthout editor wrote to   Truthout and asked this question: Who is Truthout now? She never   received an answer.
Marc Ash,
Truthout Founder, Former Executive Director and Truthout Board President


Statement: Former Truthout Co-founder and Political Director Scott Galindez
Getting the Truthout
I   joined  Truthout months after George W. Bush  stole the country from the American people. I left Truthout after the   organization was stolen from its founders. As a co-founder of Truthout I   worked hard for nine years to build the organization. I served many   roles and wore many hats over the years. I was the managing editor,   political editor, I wrote, and I even spent time behind and in front of   the camera. I was committed to the success of Truthout.
Last   August I learned of a union movement at Truthout. There was an email   from a group that called itself the Truthout Organizing Committee. For   at least two weeks the organizing committee remained anonymous, and   refused to answer questions from senior employees.
I am a strong supporter of organized labor, but I immediately questioned the motives of this group. Truthout staff worked from  their homes and had benefits including healthcare. I  wondered why my fellow employees wanted a union in the first place.
I decided if there was going to be a union I wanted to be involved.
I   continued to work hard, helping the organization make the transition; I   was still committed to the cause of Truthout even though I was   concerned at how the senior staff was being treated by the new   management. After promises of job security and better benefits, senior   staff members were being laid off.
At   that point in time, the senior staff was very active in the preparation   for negotiations, but nobody from the original group that pushed for a   union was active with the union. They all now considered themselves   management. But when the union decided that most of them  would not be considered management they rushed back and joined the  committee preparing for negotiations.
The   new management began to take management stances on issues, and the   contract negotiations really began in the committee that had been   preparing for negotiations. The new management opposed seniority having   any meaning, and at one point one of them even opposed a union shop.
That   is when the layoffs began. First to go were two of the active members   of the committee organizing for the union, who had also been with the   organization longer than any of the people who had taken over Truthout.   One was even the union secretary, a position that had a seat at   negotiations. I ran for that position and was smeared by the group that   originally organized the union, and lost by one vote. In early December,   five months after the union  was recognized, the first union negotiations took place. They did not   even come close  to agreeing on a contract. One would have thought that when the union   organizing committee became management the result would have been   slam-dunk negotiations. It is now one year later and there is still no   contract with the union.
The   next round of layoffs hit two more senior employees a few days after I   was fired. My firing came on New Year's Day. I was fired by email, for   leaving a fundraising button in the daily newsletter. I did not receive a   phone call, and none of my phone calls or emails were returned. I was   not given a chance to explain or defend my decision. After nine years, I   was fired without even the courtesy of a phone call. The eight Truthout   employees who were laid off or fired after the union was recognized all   had higher seniority that the five employees who used the cover of a   union campaign  to seize control of the organization. After nine years at Truthout, I   was dismissed for leaving a donate  button in a newsletter that would make it easier for readers to donate.   Yeah. Right. The truth is that I was part of a purge of senior pro-union   staff by the new management that originally organized the union. I   don't blame you if you are dizzy after reading this.
In Peace,
Scott Galindez


Statement: Oma Artis, Former Truthout Content Engineer and Customer Support Supervisor
Why I Left the Best Job I Ever Had
I   had been employed by Truthout since the summer of 2004 as a Page   Generator and was second in seniority  of the production staff. We were a small team of a dozen or so when I   started, so I soon acquired more skills than  publishing article pages, from creating html code for special article   pages, to working with our Art Director Ionia Kershaw to develop feature   pages, to helping launch and being the lead generator for the Issue   pages, and a variety of other production and non-production jobs, such   as reader support services. I spent many, many long hours in front of my   computer helping in any way that I could to build Truthout into the   widely-known and trusted news service that it became.
I   was very happy with my job - what was not to like? We had all the perks   of working from home, a generous salary, a good benefit package, a   yearly bonus, and a varied and talented staff with very little   interpersonal friction. The best part of all was the feeling that we   were making a difference - even if it was  just one person at a time - by getting the often ignored, denied or   covered-up Truth Out to our readers.
Over   the course of five years I also found Marc Ash to be caring and   generous, not only as an employer, but on a personal level as well. If   you went to him with a problem or need he always asked two questions:   "What can Truthout do to help?" and, "What can I do to help?" He was   never shy with praise when a job was well done, and as my   responsibilities increased, so did my salary.
So   it was a complete and utter shock when on August 14, 2009, I received   an email at my personal address that began: "Dear Employees of Truthout,   We are writing to you to inform you of our ongoing unionization effort   at Truthout. We would like you to be a part of our Truthout union ..."   and was signed by "The Truthout Organizing Committee." It  contained a line that, to me, was both ominous and puzzling, "If you are   interested in joining with the majority of your colleagues  ..."
"Our"   efforts? "Our" union? Who was this "our"? Why had my "colleagues" made   this decision for "our" best interests without any input or feedback   from me? Wasn't this the very same kind of closed-door, underhanded   tactics that we fought to expose for our readers? It was not only   puzzling, it was hurtful, and it wasn't until several days later that I   found out I was not the only one who was kept in the dark until   unionization was pretty much a done deal.
After   a few days, without any more information forthcoming from the Union   Organizers, I replied to the letter with questions of my own such as:   "Who and what are the 'we' and 'ongoing' ... what's the big secret?"
Their answer: silence.
Nine   days  later, after another "anonymous" email from the Union Organizers, we   received an email from a member of the Truthout Board of Directors,   which stated in part: that we hadn't received answers to our questions   because the Union Organizers had been "... working overtime to try to   deal with all this while keeping the site running well; many are simply   exhausted...." and assuring us that, "... on behalf of the entire Board   of Directors, that no one's job is at risk." But jobs were at risk, and   the board should have known that.
I   made a decision to speak out about my concerns not only for myself but   for the organization I cared for. I was ostracized by the new management   and confronted; I was faced with mean-spirited accusations and   basically  bullied. Under those circumstances I could not continue to be a part of   what Truthout had become and tendered my resignation.
Leaving   the friends I had worked so hard with, our shared commitment to   "getting the Truth Out," and the best job I ever had was one of the most   painful decisions I have ever made.
Oma Artis




Statement: Gary Dziewior, Former Truthout Lead Content  Engineer
I Would Like to Speak Out
I   was a dedicated and committed employee of Truthout for nearly five   years, helping to get the truth out on a number of startling   revelations, from the re-election of Bush to the Iraq War to numerous   political scandals. I was involved in many different facets of the   organization. After becoming a full-time employee (starting off   part-time), I helped lead the technical transition (with Ionia Kershaw)   and debut of the newly redesigned site in 2008. After the project was   completed, I became the supervisor for the  technical team, overseeing six employees. Typically I was the 'go-to'   technical guru who helped everyone in the organization with their   technical problems. I invested a lot of effort and time into becoming a   valued and dedicated Truthout employee so that I could see Truthout  continue to grow and succeed.
The   concept of the union was brought up to me as a way to preserve job   security, increase compensation and to create an overall better working   environment. Once the union was enacted, I (along with Scott Galindez   and Ionia Kershaw) served on the union committee to help determine our   bargaining strategy, conduct negotiations and to see Truthout   strengthened as an organization and for its workers.
One   of the main values the union pressed during formation and negotiations   was seniority. The organizers, however, didn't believe in  job security (except their own) once they had become management. All the   people with the most seniority were released, while those with less   seniority who had organized the union moved into management and opposed   the same workers' rights that they petitioned when organizing. The   concept and  values that the union had been founded on were sacrificed and   cannibalized. It seems that seniority and union participation had gone   from being noble attributes serving a just cause to being employment   liabilities.
I   was constantly involved in many different ways trying to help my fellow   workers - committed to the cause of getting the truth out. After nearly   five years of hard work and dedication, I was laid off. It has been an   immense struggle to find work in this economy and times have been tight,   especially while facing eviction. I was told I was laid off because of   monetary reasons, although I believe  there are other opaque reasons - especially considering the Truthout   staff has grown since my departure. This is not the truth that I wanted   to get out.
Gary Dziewior


Statement: Lisa Sandrock, Former Truthout Site Content Coordinator
I Was a Dedicated, Cooperative Employee
My   name is Lisa Sandrock, I was hired by Truthout in 2005 as a Page   Generator. Over the next few years, I had taken on the additional roles   of List Administrator and Comment Moderator. I supported the union at   Truthout for job security and for the betterment of working conditions.
Shortly   after the union was recognized and Truthout came under new management,   my job responsibilities started to be taken away. When I was informed   about the first round of lay-offs, I was told by management that my job   was secure. On January 5, 2010, I was laid off from my job at Truthout,   four months after the union was  recognized, even though I was employed there far longer than all the   union organizers who terminated my position.
I   have a mortgage and have had to make several major changes in my life   to make ends meet. I had to get government assistance, which eventually   ran out. I still may lose my home. I was a dedicated, cooperative   employee and felt my job was one that made a difference.
Lisa Sandrock


Statement: Morgan Roberts, Former Truthout Content Engineer
A Weird Union
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak out about this situation. I have actually thought about  it for a long time.
At   no point in time was I ever informed of any Union activity. Looking   back I think I was kept out of the loop. I think it would have been   beneficial to hear what my fellow workers and supervisors were   discussing, but I was not given the opportunity to discuss anything.   Maybe the fact that Marc is my Uncle was one of the reasons I was denied   the right to participate and fired. The Union organizers may have   wrongly concluded that I could not listen and make up my own mind.
I   was fired barely two weeks after Marc resigned, and less than a month   after the union was recognized by Truthout. I was only 19 at the time,   and it was my first experience with a union, but I don't think that's   what unions are supposed to do.
Prior   to being fired, my scheduled was  changed on more than one occasion and those changes were not made clear   to me. In addition, I was unable to log on to even start work.
These events happened just before I was fired. I was not late or absent from my job, I was misinformed and fired anyway.
Morgan Roberts

13
Perpetual Threads / This date in history ...
« on: June 17, 2010, 08:09:19 PM »
Again, I cannot find an appropriate thread - so I will create one.
 
On this date (okay tomorrow) 18 June, 1815. Napoleon's big comeback was ended one Sunday afternoon in Belgium at Waterloo.
 
It does seem a long time ago - but the Battle and the resulting congress at Vienna set the scene for the repression of 1848 and that led to Marx/Engels and their Communist Manifesto. A document that still has some relevance.
 
One change from it came in New Brunswick that supplied spars for the British navy. With the peace that followed the economy of northern NB was devastated for the next century.
 
As well, the Americans, no dumb bunnies, saw that the British navy, some 600 ships strong (just less than 200 major ships of the line) now could turn its' attention to N. America. The treaty of Ghent ended the 'difficulties' than began in 1812.
 
The map of Europe came thaaaaaat close to being forever altered.

14
One of the first things I did upon arriving in the Nations Capital was to locate the library and becomes a member. That, in itself, was a bit strange. Not really sure of the layout of downtown I approached an RCMP Constable in a cruiser parked on a side street and asked him where the Public Library was.:handcuffs:
 
He did not have a clue.
 
He was on the special troops brought in from elsewhere to protect the Parliament Buildings - and was as unfamiliar with DT Ottawa as I was.
 
Libraries are important to me.
 
I remember quickly chewing up the children's section of the Saint John Free Public; being insulted they would not allow me to join the adult branch; then once a member, quickly going though all the SF section, the mystery sector and, after digesting Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward, (the most popular American book ever published, and by a socialist too) feeling I could tackle the political science/history and philosophy sections.
 
(Back to Ottawa)
 
I see the Ottawa Public is having quite a bad year - they were closed for most of last week from a case of 'computer upgrades that go bad'.
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The library's website, which is operating as usual, said the upgrade was expected to close every branch until Tuesday, but that unforeseen challenges transferring data from the old system to the new system forced the additional two days of closures.
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The good news is that the Library is in the news - the bad news is that the Library is in the news .... the upgrade is a great idea. :) - the glitch is a bummer.
 
A gratuitous addendum.
 
Waaay back in the early 20th century there were riots in Hamilton over the Library. Andy Carnegie built a library for the city. Teh good people at the Chamber of Commerce (here read Copps) while thinking it was a fine idea, were worried that the working folks would have access to some radical political ideas. (here read dem damn commies).
 
The local proletariate took a dim view of that idea and protested .... well sir, 'ol man Copps took a dim view of these uppity workers expressing their own ideas
(see what happend when you edumacate 'em?) and er...er... encouraged teh police to take action.
 
An even dimmer view of that was taken by the workers and they responded. OOPs - a full scale riot.
 
Eventually the library was opened peacefully ...
 

15
Municipal Elections / Ottawa civic ..
« on: May 03, 2010, 12:47:01 PM »
The good people that did not live in Ottawa until Mike Harris decided they should live in Ottawa elected Larry O'Brien as Mayor in the last civic.
 
Larry O'B was a businessman ... not a computer geek, but a guy that hired computer geeks on contract - he promised to:
 
reduce taxes,
bring a business attitude to City Hall,
reduce taxes,
get rid of plan #493 to ease downtown traffic
and .... reduce taxes.
 
Well - he was
 
successful at reducing taxes .... so successful in fact that Ottawa could not afford to remove the snow from the streets in 2007-08.
 
successful in bring a business sense to City Hall: he was charged with buying off his opposition. (with the help of John Baird)
 
successful in removing from the table plan #493 from the traffic table in order to introduce plan # 494.
 
Hell-of-a-gyu, the Larry .... just a hell-of-a-Guy! :peace2:
 
Now, we find in the Citizen today he is ..... well ..... Larry is nice. :preghug:
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Mayor Larry O’Brien began last Wednesday’s council meeting by effusively thanking the “hard-working public servants” who dealt with the H1N1 crisis last year.
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O’Brien then went on to congratulate Councillor Clive Doucet for being recently named Man of the Year by the local Consumers Association
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He even likes 'lefties' too:

 
Quote
“I have been impressed by the logic of Councillor (Diane) Holmes.”
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Mind you in cancelling plan #493 it cost the city about $36 million -
 
Mind you that by cancelling a plan from some city 'business people' for a park, with an international design competition it made a fool of the city ....
 
Mind you, he is a good conservative. A good conservative in that, rather than rule by fiat - he prefers consultation. Especially with the new Landsdown Park development .. he defines consultation in the Colbert way: "We present; You agree."

Looks to me as if the Citizen is willing to accept that his first term was just training for a newbie in politics. Now we are allowed a Mayor ...

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