Friday, June 17, 2011

June 17: More than the usual dose of ignorance

It began on p.1 with a big picture and story of the great public consultation on a new, one hundred million dollar hockey rink. (It's part of the latest New Brunswick fad that governments should govern by listening to people - or whoever turns up with an opinion. It's a good thing doctors don't do heart surgery on that principle.)

The news story said there were a hundred people in attendance. I saw 27 in the photo looking at the angle ofo the speaker's desk, I would guess there might be another 27 who are out of the picture. But let's give them a hundred. (Would the T7T lie? Do fish like water?) That 's less than one person per thousand in the "greater Moncton" region. And it's a safe bet that many of them are city employees who were told to be there, and to round up their relatives.

The story gives no evidence that any of them has the slightest knowledge of city planning. But that puts them on even terms with the Mayor and his Council. They were planning, they were told, to build the catalyst for the next hundred years of city growth.

Wow! We have people who know what our needs will be ini a hundred years? Or ten years? Or five?

Moncton already has a few such visions for the future lying around but doing nothing. For example, there's the ruin of the old, railway roundhouse. There's the main street built for  horse traffic. There's the shops built for shoppers who parked at the curb.

Some architectural genius said the new stadium should be modern, but should fit in with its surroundings. Really? It should like  a Sobey's? Or a hotel? Or a shopping mall? Think of all the great architectrual works of the last fifty years. Does the Sydney Opera House look anything like the buildings surrounding it? Does the Expo 67  Habitat in Montreal? The Guggenhem Museum?

Once again, the T&T writes about politic and economic con artists manipulating a handful of people - most of whom have no idea what they're talking about - and calls it democracy.

The paper carries no mention of groups who have been demonstrating against "fracking" for shale gas, through the drilling is going on very close to Moncton - and so have the demonstrations. But, I guess that in a democracy people who say a hockey stadium should have a pool overlooking the Petitcodiac so we can get the feeling we're swimminig in the river are worth listening to.  People who say we may be endangering our environment, our health, and maybe ourlives...well, they's jes' iggerant.

Then there's the editorial. For bias and ignorance of the subject, today's is close to a record. It's a defence of Harper for he very early intervention in the postal and Air Canada strikes. His argument is that since they are government run, they really shouldn't be allowed to strike.

Apparently the writer of the editorial must have been born before 1987, the year Air Canada was largely privatized. The rest of the editorial is just as ignorant and illogical. In the case of the postal workers, they are employees just like any other employee. The union is there only defence against the boss - whether the boss is private or public. But as prime minister, Harper is both employer and government leader. His intervention at this stage is exactly like Mr. Irving declaring a strike of his employees to be illegal. (I'm sure he may already have done so.)

Conservative governments encourage the free market and leave private business alone? Really? They leave it alone? So most of our public forest wasn't handed over? We don't give cheap loans to companies that go broke? We insist that big corporations pay the same rates for electricity that we do? And that corporations and the rich pay the same tax rates we do?

Conservatives encourage the free market? That's why we just signed a multi, multi-billion deal to buy fighter plances without calling for tenders?

Conservatives have economic health " top of the mind"?  So how come Conservatives, throughout Canadian history have been the biggest spenders, and have run up the biggest deficits?

Then get the final paragraph. It says the majority of Canadians used their votes to build a majority government for Harper. The majority of Canadians.... Surely I don't have to point out the obvious failure of logic here.

This editorial is so far beneath contempt for its ignorance and illogic, it's not even good bullshit.

Then there's Norbert. He argues that computer "hacking" can be considered reason for going to war. (As if we needed reasons. What was the reason for killing millins of civilians in Vietnam? Over a million in Iraq? For overthrowing the elected government of Iran to install a brtual dictatorship under the Shah. What was the reason to overthrow the elected government of Guatemala, and install a dictatorship? What was the reason to murder 200,000 impoverished Mayan civilians - whole families - in Guatemala? Why are we killing Libyans? Why are US drones bombing Yemen?

The US and Israel have both hacked government computers in Iran. So when do we got to war with them? 

All large countries hack into each other's systems and spy on each other. If that's cause for war, we are in for eternal war.

Confidently bone-headed to the end, Norbert concludes that "Chaotic new frontiers invariably end up being controlled." Right. Like the ancient Romans controled the barbarians. Like we have learned to control opium and cocaine (and gambling and alcohol and the environment and the risk of nuclear war.)

There's also surprise about the hockey riot in Vancouver - as though this were a suprise. Without even tryinig hard, I've been caught in the middle of three of them in Montreal. Why they happen is no mystery.

1. Hockey fans are such socially deprived people that they think it really, really matters who wins a game. They have no equivalent concern about anything else. Most of the population of this world has never heard of the Vancouver Canucks (or the Moncton Wildcats). But many fans think that winning a trophy is right up there with the Second Coming.

2. A great many fans are so emotionally involved that they deeply feel the need of alcoholic medication before, during, and after the game.

3. Criminals know that. So they get the fans going on violence, then hit their own, pre-planned targets.

The recipe is immature fans, booze, and a few, smart crooks. I've seen all three, up close.

1 comment:

  1. Graeme: MY newspaper says "the 50 or so participants" attended this "brainstorming" session for the "events centre" Moncton JUST HAS TO HAVE. As you can see the public is demanding this George LeBlanc "legacy" be built ASAP. So you give this session too much credit.....there were "50 or so"...apparently