Friday, March 23, 2012

March 23: Wow! 'Critical federal IT systems at more about it....

....Oh, gosh - section C p.1 -  international taxation is collapsing. No, no. It's Informal Tuxedos. No, can't be that.  maybe Intergenerational Tolerance. No. That collapsed in Genesis. Ignorant Toryism? (Can't be. It's alive and well.) Inedible Toothbrushes? Insulated Toenails?

A newspaper is aimed at the general reader. General readers may not be familiar with all the latest buzz terms used in various small circles. That's why when we refer to Moncton, we usually say Moncton. We don't say MTWWIW (metro the whole world is watching).

At no point in that story in section C are we told what IT means. No competent news service should have sent out such a story. No competent newspaper editor should have accepted such a story. Obviously, the Moncton Times and Transcript simply buys stories from Postmedia and Reuters every day without bothering even to read them, much less assess their imiportance.

(ITs are information technological systems - a term still so vague as to convey no understanding to at least 90% of readers - even in MTWWIW).

Also in section C, there is a full page on Senate reform. Why? A full page is a lot. The TandT gave less than that to a gushing free ad for tonight's hockey game in Halifax. The Senate is now being featured daily. All kinds of ways to improve the Senate have been discussed. All but the obvious one. Scrap it. It was never designed in the first place as anything but a device to limit democracy.

We have a body to represent us We get, more or less, equal votes in choosing the House of Commons. Do we really need two places to do the same thing? If so, why not five - or fifteen?

As for power for New Brunswick, we already have a provincial government with wide powers, so wide, in fact, that Canada is one of the most decentralized countries in the world. So what's this fuss about the Senate? What is the game that's being played?

I don't pretend to know what it's about. Perhaps the point of the game to make Alward look like a leader who's speaking up for the people of this province. The "fight" for an elected Senate could cover up Alward's obvious failings, especially with the help of his master's newspapers. That may well be it. It's hard to imagine any other motive for whipping this dead horse.

As the middle east spins out of control, we may well be within months of sending our troops into battle again. The possibility of war with Iran, which looks closer to a certainty every day, is major news in every country in the world. No-one knows how big it might get. Obama has made it clear he doesn't want such a war, and fears the consequences of it. Netanyahu has made it equally clear he doesn't give a damn what Obama thinks because he knows that if he starts a war, the US ( and Canada, etc.etc.) will have to join.

Then, on future November 11s, politicians will give speeches about how we must remember those who died. Actually, the time to think about them is now - before we send them to die. Should we fight this war? The reason we have a democracy is so that we can make such decisions.

But how can we discuss it? Few in Moncton know anything about it. Their minds are full of information about Senate reform. the"events" centre, and the Wildcats. So, when the day comes, we'll say "Send them. God bless the Empire (whichever empire it might be) And one day a year, we'll remember them - and pat ourselves on the back for it.

Then, there's the proud headline on P. 1. "Moncton most competitive city in Canada, U.S." Of course, we aren't nearly as competitive as cities in China or Mexico or Guatemala or Haiti or Congo. If you really want to live in a 'competitive' city, you might check out Port au Prince in Haiti, for example.

The study, we are told, was carried out by KPMG. Wow!  Kindergarten Piddling and Mopping Group? Kangaroo Peeking and Mating Games?  Who funds them? Or do they just carry out these studies for the hell of it?

And let's take a moment to thank all those Monctonians who work for minimum wage and are prepared to accept a poisoned province, and pay to make up for the taxes that corporations don't pay, just to keep us competitive. I thank you. The shale gas industry thanks you. Property developers thank you. Mr. Irving thanks you.

Our cup runneth over.

1 comment:

  1. Hah! Funny! Sad but true.

    And I never did get the idea of the senate. I'm sure a few, well-intentioned have served on the senate over time, but they would be the exception.

    Of course, we lemons are given the official line the senate is supposed to be the 'chamber of sober-second-thought'.

    Supposedly, its where important issues are sent and examined through the creation of subcommittees that conduct research and analysis of the topics.

    In reality however, especially under Harper, its a place to reward loyal friends with a fat, taxpayers-funded paycheck, for doing little, real work, and who will skew their findings to Harper's fascist/business agenda.

    Oh, Canada!