Saturday, July 14, 2012

Wow! lots of pictures of not-very-old cars

That pretty much sums up todays' news in The Moncton Times and Tribune. Page 1 is headed by a photo of a 2008 Mustang. Now there's something you don't see every day. I mean, not every day. Then there's a picture of a Ford steering wheel. I mean, like, it's all round and everything. Weird.

There is a massive story - in fact, two of them that begin on page one then take up pp. 14 and 15 as well. Together they make one of the largest stories I've seen in a newspaper. Too bad they don't say much. They're about Gregg Ingersoll who takes over the anglophone part of our school district; and they gush about how he's an electrician and has a cottage at Shediac and, oh, just everything. There's even a long passage about how, being an electrician, he could fix the lights and everything at the schools.

Anything that deals with education policy is so vague as to be useless. All we're really told is he's going to do what the education minister wants. Very exciting, I'm sure.

Did the district ever have a director before? Was anything accomplished? I don't know. It doesn't say.

A commentary on the oped page is really a free ad for NB Power.

The one bright spot is Bill Belliveau's column on wind power.

It's amazing what isn't in today's Times and Transcript. For example:

The chairman of the US Federal reserve, Ben Bernanke, has testified to Senate that the US economic crisis is going to get much worse. As well, a recent study estimates that US wars of the past decade will cost 3.7 to 4.4 trillion dollars.  That's quite a debt.

And, yes, all this will affect even the hub of the Maritimes. The US is our largest customer and a major source of tourists. What a great time to borrow a hundred million for an events centre!

The bank scandals  about rigging interest costs, making wild investments, laundering billions in drug money, and driving whole nations into poverty is now well and truly world-wide.  HSBC, the British banking company, has been found guilty of money-laundering, and fined a billion dollars. Mind you, it won't hurt them much  since they just got a three and a half billion dollar bailout.

Why should we care? Because HSBC is the second largest banking conglomerate in the world - all over the world, including Canada. It also owns outfits you may be more familiar with like Household Finance. As well, Canadian banks, too, operate in that huge brothel we call the world banking system. Do you really think they're virgins?

Now, compare that news with what appears on the TandT's Your Business page.

The US has just sent a fourth carrier to join its fleet off Iran. Think maybe they're just funnin'?

An Israeli has been jailed in the US for buying kidneys from destitute Palestinians in the occupied territories, and selling them in the US. No big deal? Well - would it be a big story if a Palestinian were trading in Jewish kidneys? Why?

Mitt Romney is holding a  campaign fund raising dinner at $65,000 a plate - in Israel. No big deal? Would you care to give me a list of other presidential candidates who have held major fund-raising dinners in foreign countries?

Then there's a great chance for Crandall Univesity to show how Christian it is.

Omar Khan, a Canadian citizen, was imprisoned as a child soldier. That's illegal. He was tortured. That's illegal. He was tried by a military court. It's illegal to try a child soldier by a military court because such a court accepts testimony obtained by torture. It also withholds evidence from the defence. He was found guilty (predictably) - with the proviso he would serve his term in Canada.

Now - in almost all cases of citizens of western countries being captured by US troops, they have immediately been turned over to the country of their citizenship. It happened to Australian citizens. It happened to British citizens. In fact, both Britain and Australia demanded it immediately on capture.  Canada is the only country that never even asked.

It was months ago that the US said he is ours. Canadian courts have cleared the way. But Harper won't lift a finger; Omar Khadr, a Canadian citizen, still sits in solitary at Guantanamo.

What a wonderful opportunity for a Christian institution to manifest its belief in love, forgiveness, all those good things by making a public statement to Mr. Harper. And it's okay. I mean, it's not like he's gay or something.

Actually, it might be a good idea for all the Christian clergy of Moncton to discuss this in their churches. But there's not a chance in hell that any of them will. Stephen Harper is not the only Christian who just talks the talk and walks the walk.

Finally, for a paper that was going to tell us all about shale gas, the Tand T has missed some pretty big stories. One of them tells us it is impossible to make shale gas safe without spending so much on maintenance that the cost would be prohibitive - and it still wouldn't be completely safe.

A reader was kind enough to send me the web address - so I pass it on to you.

As always, there's also real news if you google Moncton Free Press.

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