Saturday, February 22, 2014

Feb.22: Wow! Wow!Wow!

A1. Big photo. "Roughly" a hundred community-minded citizens showed up at city hall to see what our new downtown will look like. Gee Whillikers. That means only a hundred and sixty thousand or so metro citizens stayed home. But they probably aren't community-minded.

And they have no idea what they missed. The hundred in attendance got to wear hard hats, and pretend to be construction workers, and look at pictures. One of the councillors wisely observed, "It's good to keep the momentum going."

Damn right. A hundred people in hard hats looking at pictures - now that's what I call momentum.

Who is behind this? Damned if I know. Just weeks ago, we had a super-committee chaired by an Irving that had a big meeting to brainstorm a new city plan. (Brainstorming. That's the only way to think. Michelangelo would have been really good if he had brainstormed with entrepreneurs at a Moncton hotel before messing up all those statues and paintings he did.)  Anyway, we never got a report from that other group. It just appeared and disappeared.

Or did it disappear? Is this essentially he same gang?

But this is for the good of the  "broader community" - the ones. who showed up to wear hard plastic hats.

Two corporate citizens - (what the hell is a corporate citizen? People are citizens. Corporations are not citizens Just people are. This is the kind of gobbledygook corporate bosses like to talk when they're looking for a way to poke in their noses where they have no business.) - anyway, two of these gobbledygooks, according to our mayor, should be involved in the process because they own the land.

Other "stakeholders" will be invited to take part. Can we cut the jargon? A stakeholder has nothing to do with holding stakes - except in a poker game. In this case, it means people who can make some easy money out of the rest of us..

Translation, they stand to make a bundle out of land that is now useless to them.

Oh, and it will help us to interact with the river. Nothing I enjoy more than interacting with a river. - though it seems to me we already have a lot of public space for that.

Then, speaking in pure, adolescent gush, the reporter writer writes that is is all to celebrate the city'anniversary."----but it could be so much more." gush, gush.

Yes, that's right. The story was written by Brent Mazerolle, the man they turn to for propaganda stories boosting the causes of those who find favour with the Irving press.

This is far the best story in Section A. So you can imagine what the rest are like.

In NewsToday, Liberal leader Gallant wants to wait for two, crucial reports on the safety of shale gas before going. ahead on   it. One report is from Environment Canada, the other from the US Environmental Research Agency.

Craig Leonard, our own fierce guardian of the environment says we can't wait. We would lose a couple of years of investment- and the companies would just go away...

Mr. Leonard, the problem of this province is not lack of investment. It's the lack of rich people paying taxes. And its the presence of rich people with their hands always stuck out for more.

And the rich will just go away.? Gee, Mr. Leonard, you gave us the impression that shale gas was a long-term proposition, the fuel of the future.. Now, you're saying that waiting a year and half to make sure it's safe would be a disaster?

OK. Let's try it. And if it turns out to have been unsafe and some people will die, what the hell... everybody dies some day.

There's a story on Ukraine - again with no hint of what this is really all about, and no hint of the American role and its purpose.

The US is very concerned about the bloodshed - some 75 people so far. Actually, more than 75 Americans die every day from guns. Since 1950, the US has killed well ten million  people all over the world. . Oh, but they're terribly worried about those Ukrainians.

And the European Union members who are so concerned for humanitarian reasons? Well, for centuries, Britain, France, Germany, Spain and Italy have been no slouches in killing.

And the US has imposed sanctions on Ukraine. Imposing sanctions is an act of war. It really is. Under international law, you have to declare war to impose sanctions - and you have to show the war is, itself, legal. But Britain, France, and the US have never bothered with the details. They just go ahead and impose them. They don't give a damn about declaring war. And they don't give a damn about the international agreements they signed. And they don't give a damn about the law.

Watch for Harper to self-righteously suck up on this one. It's a matter of votes.

Ukrainian immigrants coming to Canada before World war one, and even in the 1920s and 30s were pro-Russian. Those who came after World War Two are anti-Russian. And those after World War Two are mostly still alive and voting. So Harper will be on their side.

B5 has a story on rioting in Venezuela. It's the usual heavily-biased stuff in which the Venezuelan government is evil (socialist). and it focusses on the emotional story of a beauty queen who was killed.

There is not a word of mention that the US government has wanted to displace the Venezuela government for years, and has been working to achieve that.  (Venezuela has lots of nice oil that really should be owned by Christian American billionaires.)

The death toll? Eight people have been killed in the last nine days. That's less than one a day. US police kill far more than that every day.

Be very, very careful about trusting any news source.

Oh, and is it terrible for Venezuela to expel reporters? No. Most countries will do that under the right circumstances. Reporters (like the Irving ones) are notorious for slanted stories that become a part of government propaganda machinery. CNN is the one mentioned here. And rightly so. When it comes to lying and twisting, CNN outclasses even the Irving press.

The editorial page is just silly. (Good cartoon, though).

The editorial looks like a pre-election booster for Harper. It seems Peter Mackay is throwing  his weight behind a move to save the Garrison Gymn. And he is joined by what's-his-name Goguen.

Come off it. Neither of them has any weight. These are gofers. And neither would dare to make such a comment without Harper's approval.

The good news is that means the gymn in probably saved.

The bad news? I'm not sure it's a good idea to reduce our military presence. Under the Conservatives, the Canadian military lack any clear function - or any capacity to do much of anything.

Norbert, as commonly, writes on several topics with impressive-sounding sentences that don't mean a damn thing. His most brilliant statement is "We must find the will and the right attitude."

Brilliant. That's so much better than losing the will, and having the wrong attitude. I suspect a windy Norbert could just possibly solve our renewable energy problem.

Bill Belliveau follow the Irving press line - telling us how to solve our economic problem without ever mentioning what causes it. Bill - we have people who take massive sums of money from our government, who don't pay taxes, who ship their profits into untraceable bank accounts, and who, with their friends all over the western world, have created what may well be the biggest financial crisis we have ever seen.

And nobody in this paper ever mentions them.

I have no idea what the point of Brent Mazerolle's column can be. He sees himself as a role model. Well, in a way, I suppose he is. And he says role models are good. Well, sometimes they are; and sometimes they're very bad, indeed.

Mr.Mazerolle is not clear on what makes him a good role model. Is it his integrity? his determination to get the truth? his courageous defiance of those who have power? Tell us more.

Gwynne Dyer's column on Ukraine is good and, I think, right - I see no bias in it, no emotionalism. But he doesn't mention the European Untion and US motive in their roles - or the consequences this could have.
For devout Christians, I recommend the pancake meals at St. John's United, and Trinity Anglican as the most reasonably priced. Steves Memorial United Church is cheap, too. But you have to listen to local talent. Best of all is First North River church which is offering pancakes, beans, sausage and potato scallop for only a free will offering. However, make sure to bring change. Otherwise, you will be guilt-tripped into laying out paper money.

Everything in the student column section of "whatever" is good. But my favourite for the day was Sabrina Stacey's charming story about St. Valentine's day. I loved it

My school memories of Valentine's day are not good ones. The class exchanged Valentines they had posted in a big box. (This  was elementary school). Some teacher's favourite would pull them out, one at at time, and call out the name of the loved one.

Most of the time, the loved boy was Terry Brown. Lord, how I hated him. I would sit there, tense, as each name was called.
"Terry Brown"......."Terry Brown"....

There I would sit quivering in anger and humiliation. Then, at last...."Graeme Decarie'

I got up, heart aquiver, and strolled over to pick up the envelope. Back at my seat,  I opened it.

"Roses are read.
Violets are blue.
Skunks stink.
And so do you."

It was signed by Carol Roberts, the prettiest girl in the class.

"Terry Brown"
He got up, opened the envelope, looked at it, then looked at Carol, and smiled.

And she smiled back.

1 comment:

  1. When I was in school I receive the same number and nature of valentine that you did. The Terry Brown in our class was a strapping lad called Ralph James. He lived about a mile out of town on a farm bordering the Castor River. And yes, when he smiled at the girls, they smiled back.

    Then out of the blue one day he befriended me, taught me how to box, and helped me be able to establish myself and defend myself against the other farm kids eager to prove their weight by taking on the thin bookworm from the poor family at the edge of town. It stopped the beatings and allowed me to live my last year in the community as a more or less normal person.

    So, sometimes, you never know.