Thursday, May 17, 2012

May 17: Prince Charles and Camilla to walk on....

...a street in St. John.

Oh, I could die. I could just die.

That's the big story in section C. But skip through the rest (almost all ads) to p. C 8. Look hard. There's a tiny story hidden way up in the corner. (U.N. criticizes Canada").  It seems that 800,00 households in Canada suffer 'food insecurity'. That means 800,000 households have no idea where the next meal is coming from. Though the story doesn't say so, that also meaans that most of those households are dependinig heavily on foods that cause obesity and other forms of bad health. Then the story offers a misleading statistic. It places that 800,000 figure in the context of a population of 34,000,000. But a household is not a person.

A household is at least two people - either two adults or one adult and a child. It is not a poor person living alone. It could be two adults and 10 children.  On a very rough and conservative guess, 800,000 households means 3,200,000 Canadian are inadequately fed. Toss in all those, young and old, living alond, and we're looking at 4,000,000 - at least.

Our federal government dismissed the UN spokesman as a "patronizing academic". Perhaps so. But such a response also sends another message - that our government is made up of people who don't give a damn about the conditions we live in.

The problem is particularly severe among native peoples, the ones most dependent on government help.

Quite apart from the suffering, malnutition is reflected in school and work performance. That means millions of Canadians are starting life without a chance.-and this in one of the wealthiest countries in the world.

In local terms, this would give us over 20,000 malnourished people in a metro Moncton that "punches over its weight".

And it's even worse in the US where the government plans to cut down on food for the hungry in order to keep taxes low for millionaires and billionaires.

Think about that, Norbert. Then write a column on what this tells us about our grotesquely twisted perversion of capitalism and of government by corporation bosses.

There are only two, important pieces of news in section A. The first is a picture of a truck with superbig wheels rolling over two, wrecked cars. This is an important picture for those who like to look at pictures of trucks with superbig wheels rolling over two, wrecked cars.

The other is on p. C3. Energy Minister Blaney has resigned her seat in the legislature; and Alward has appointed her CEO of government-owned Efficiency New Brunswick. It's a long story - that still manages to miss the only two, important points in it.

1. Blaney has virtually no experience in the field of energy since she has been absent for most of her short time as Energy Minister.
2. She has been a strong supporter of shale gas development - a record that would seem to be in conflict with her new role.

It does, however, mention there was no public search for a CEO. Blaney was simply appointed by Alward.

Norbert's column shocked me. He suggested we should tell entrepreneurs that we aren't going to hand out 'development' money to them in any form. What, he asks, would happen?

Well, for openers Norbert would get fired for suggesting it in the first place. Alward would have to spend at least a week on smelling salts. Um, Norbert, would you, perhaps, be prepared to name the enterpreneurs you have in mind? Any name that start with G? I? M?

The rest of his column is just silly.

Jody Dallaire and Alec Bruce write on closely related topics; and both, as usual, are worth the read.

On op ed, Rod Allan contributes the usual staff-writer waste of space.

Letters to the Editor is a powerful reminder that the village idiots on both sides are thirsting for a language war. Don't encourage them.

The Times and Transcript has yet to report anything of substance on the student strike in Quebec - though it has implications that could be serious for Canada - and maybe beyond. As it happens, I have quite a bit of experience, both personally and professionally, of what is going on in that strike. If tomorrow's Times and Transcript is another nothing, I may devote the space to what is going on in Quebec.

1 comment:

  1. I always check out the letters to the editor, although not to check out the language warriors. I usually check to see if there's some misinformed moral guardian who wishes the 1960s never happened.

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