Wednesday, May 23, 2012

May23: Praise the Lord and Poison all the Water

It is perfectly reasonable that the federal government change the EI rules so that an unemployed person must accept a job within an hour's drive from home - or be disqualified from receiving EI. In the lead story of NewsToday, this is the quotation from an 'expert'.

An expert on what? On driving an hour to work and home very day when you're on a low wage? An expert on how to do that when you're unemployed, don't have a car, and won't be able to afford one even if you do get a low wage job? Is he an expert on that?

Well, no. He's an expert on being quoted whenever the Times and Transcript needs a quotation from an 'expert' that supports whatever the rich want. The expert is (SURPRISE) Donald Savoie of U de Moncton. (Ever hear this 'expert' express disapproval of anything done by Harper or Irving or any of the big kids?) And he is far the most quoted 'expert' in the pages of the Irving papers.

Page B6 has a story that looked promising. It's about a recently completed study of groundwater in New Brunswick, and the threats to it. Funny thing, though. They didn't study the effects of fracking on ground water. That's like studying bomb damage in Hiroshima - except for any caused by the atomic bomb. Imagine - in over ten years there has been no study of the effects of fracking on anything. Ten years, and we're just now enacting regulations for which there has been no study in the first place.

Let me put this gently. there is no possibility that one can believe in the honesty of any government in this province in at least the past ten ten years. There is no reason to believe in the integrity or even human concern of any of the drilling companies. There is no reason to see the Moncton Times and Transcript as anything but ethically corrupt.

This province is full of people and their churches who claim to adhere to the moral beliefs of Christianity. But this province is run and controlled by people who are profoundly immoral by the standards of any religion I can think of.

Where the hell are the clergy and churches of this province while all this is going on?  Where are even those Christians who think being Christian means having a shower, getting dressed neatly, knocking on my door, and giving me a pamphlet?

By their silence, the churches in this province are partners in the whole history of abuse of New Brunswickers by their political leaders, their economic leaders and most of their news media. I would love to go to a church in Moncton. But, frankly, if I want a  dose of self-righteous hypocrisy, it's easier just to read the paper or listen to a speech by Harper or Alward.

The op ed page? The one we need for expert analysis so that we can understand the news? Today, it features a diary of Eric Lewis' visit to New York; and Brian Cormier's sage observation that it cost more to have two pets than just one.

Nowhere in the paper is there a mention of the demands of the medical profession for a study of the health implications of fracking. Of course not. The powers of this province don't give a damn for the place or its people. To those buzzards, New Brunswick and its people are just pieces of rotting carrion to be picked at.

Norbert has his usual column in which he blames everybody but himself for poor voter turnout. Look, Nortbert, voter turnout in North American has been sinking for at least forty years. What's causing it to sink is the lies and apathy encouraged by journalists like you who peddle propaganda and trivia so that people have no idea what is going on. By your refusal to mention it, you encourage corruption and disillusionment with government of any sort. You and your paper have constantly pimped for any corrupt and greedy scheme so long as it came from the 'right' people.

And, so far, Norbert, your paper has not mentioned the Montreal student strike - let alone tell the truth about it. It is now spreading across Canada, the US, and into Europe. Your paper hasn't mentioned it, though it's world news, and Quebec is next door. What's the problem, Norbert, your boss doesn't approve of it? I'll just bet he doesn't.  It's a protest against people like him.

Superb column by Alec Bruce.  And there are two letters worth reading. One is "Columnist proposes faulty policy". It's about Norbert, of course. The other is "Writer eloquent on MHS file". The decision to move MHS has, like everything else in this province's politics and in it's Irving press, the reek of dishonesty.

Boy, it sure doesn't take long to cover what's good in this paper.

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