Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Sept. 4: Wow! A tattoo festival..
My apologies for my lack of any paragraph structure. I write this with one. But my Ipad has its own ideas. (My desktop computer, one month and a bit after I ordered Bell service, is still not working. Not, of course, that I'm implying anything about Bell service.) Shall put //at the end of each paragraph to see if that helps.// I was excited about all that is happening in Moncton. The "Hub City Tattoo Festival" will be a wonderful event for "art-lovers", with food from the Coliseum cafeteria, presentation of the "coveted" Tattoo of the Day award, a display of motorcycles, and all for only $35 for the whole weekend. Hold me back. This trivia uses up almost two columns of space.// The big story, top of page one, is that Camp Centennial has been around for 20 special years. Now, I'm a big fan of children's camps. (I've been camper, counsellor, and camp director for nine years). But this is not a front page headline, not for any serious newspaper. In fact, this lightweight story is well over a full page long. And that's absurd.// Another front page story tells us that the details of the school year are set. Well, duh, yeah, I guess they would be. But we are told little about them. And this is front page.// In other big news, a chocolate shop is opening somewhere. There's even a picture of it.// There's a whole page about Havelock having a show of horses pulling what the writer refers to as covered wagons. It's mostly pictures, presumably for people who have never seen a horse and wagon before.// There are only a few stories that are important for us to know. One of the most important is "Family courts swamped..." It's important because so many of the people who need access to justice are poor - and right now, they aren't getting any justice at all. But that's only a short story buried on A9."// Most of section (like most of the paper) is simply the usual Brunswick News strategy in keeping people in the dark, and softening their heads with a steady diet of trivia.// ................................................................................................... NewsToday begins with a story at the top that isn't a story. It's an opinion column, different from the real one only in the the person offering the opinion not writing it but dictating it to a person humorously referred to as a reporter. As a result, there is no questioning, no search for differing opinion. This isn't reporting. This is stenography. It's also vague and incomprehensible.// The general thrust (this from a Mr. Betts, a former Finance Minister) is the usual one that claims the civil service is too big, and there's too much government. He also says, many times, that government should do the "right thing". Wow! What an insight! And all these years I've thought it should be doing the wrong thing. Worth thinking about that deep thought.// Yessiree, government is too big. That's the whole problem - that and the fact that for the first time in history, New Brunswick policies are pushed by interest-groups.// Exactly what do you mean by interest groups, Mr. Betts. Oh, I know. You mean those powerful, interfering groups that favour things like medicare and feeding the hungry.// Mr. Betts, New Brunswick is run by interest groups - and, despite what you say, it always has been. Have you never heard of Irving Oil? Irving forestry? Business groups for an "events centre", land developers? Such groups openly run this province, and always have. These interest-groups, beginning with forestry go way back. Didn't you know that?// Mr. Irving, a big businessman, has openly and highly improperly interfered directory with government. His newspapers have a near monopoly on information - and they use it to keep New Brunswickers ignorant and saturated with propaganda.// Yes, we do have interest-groups like, say, the anti-shale gas movement. They try to represent what they think is good for the people of this province. And they represent ordinary citizens who certainly have a right as individual to to take political positions. It's called democracy. They represent what they think is right - and they are not powerful or welcome to government. (When was the last time the police punched out an Irving woman at a demonstrations?// By the way, if you really think government should be smaller, tell it to back off from the "events centre". If big business wants an events centre, and thinks it will be profitable, let the capitalists of big business do what capitalists are supposed to do. Let them build the thing and pay for it. Stop living off our taxes. Stop looking for a government big enough to run a very expensive welfare system for big business bums.// This is a silly column about a badly-informed man. I've never met the "author" of this column, Kurt Peacock; he's an embarrassment to journalism. Of course,he works for Brunswick Press.// ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ The Syria crisis continues. We're watching two, former empires (Britain and France) hanging on to the coattails of the last, desperate western empire, the US, in order to control the plunder of a continent. They claim, without proof, that Syria has broken international conventions. Maybe so. Maybe not. But I do know that Britain, France and the US have broken and are breaking just about every international convention and law in the book.// Obama claims that Syria is a threat to US security. That's sad. Terrible the way all those small and poor countries are always attacking the US. By the way, if Syria is able to threaten US security, that means it could threaten us, perhaps launching a massive attack by men on camels swimming across the ocean to loot Anne of Green Gables souvenirs.// You'll notice, though, that most nations in the West, including Canada, are backing away from this one. But it may not matter. This may well turn into something none of us can escape from.// Big, big story on C10 about a veteran who just met his teenage penpal. The news YOU need to know.// ............................................................................................ The editorials are just plain silly. Norbert has half of his column about a dangerous building in London that reflects enough heat to melt a car. Really. Gotta watch them buildings......by the way, Norbert, this city and/or province has allowed somebody to "renovate" two buildings in Highfield Square. The renovation is so great, they are virtually new buildings. // Now, it's illegal to put up new buildings on Highfield Square because the land is so polluted. And these are virtually new buildings. Why was that permitted? Who did it? And what dangers does it pose for people who work in those buildings?// Tell us about London's problems later.// Superb column by Alec Bruce. And I say that not because I'm a teacher but because I was a student. Like Alec Bruce, some of my teachers changed my life - and I remember them with great fondness. I once scored twelve out of a hundred in a geometry test. So that makes me six times smarter than Mr. Bruce. On op ed page, read Eric Lewis and Brian Cormier. But only if you're the sort of person who gives a damn enough to read those other columns about how some unheard of entertainer is 42 today, or that Beyonce likes caramel ice cream.//