Tuesday, April 1, 2014

April 1: Yesterday, we had freezing rain...

...if you missed it the TandT has lots of pictures of what rain looks like when it freezes. We also had a massive power outage in the evening. Alas, there are no photos of the dark. Couldn't they have used flash bulbs?

And the saga of Salisbury recreation goes on, making that a possibility of becoming the story of the year.

The only story worth reading in Section A is "End of Health Accord protested". Ottawa is cutting its contributions to provincial health care budgets. Protesters say this could even mean an eventual end to medicare and a return to private medicine. The protesters are wimpy.

This DEFINITELY means a planned end to medicare and a return to private medicine. Harper is an ideologue who hates medicare. He wants to destroy it. And if we stand around with our faces hanging out, that's exactly what he will do.

All over the western world that farce we call capitalism (sorry. entrepreneurship) has put increasing amounts of money into the pockets of the rich, leaving no money for services. Western capitalism is also deep in the rot of corruption and illegal activity. And across the western world, we have to pay in order to protect the high salaries and bonuses of the rich, and to spare them taxes. That's why countries like Greece, Spain, Ireland, Ukraine and the United States are suffering levels of poverty we haven't seen in a century.

But don't worry. The rich haven't missed a beat. In fact, they're getting substantially richer.

This isn't just a matter of getting some thing free. It's a matter of getting something at all, something that you need to stay alive. Check US life expectancy compared to other industrialized countries. (Check them against Cuba).  Check infant mortality rates.

Private medicine means death. Of course, I don't want to suggest that Harper and his wealthy friends are killers. Certainly not. How could they be? The concept of morality does not exist among them.

No, the they aren't killers, not deliberate ones. They're just greedy and stupid.

There is a curious story on p. B1, "Canada is not immune to Global Warming".

Actually, that's not what the story is about. It's about global warming in general, that we are running out of time to prevent it, that we may already have run out of time, and we desperately need to work out how we are going to deal with the consequences.

The report is from the Intergovernmental Committee on Climate Change. Ever hear of it? Neither have I. But I've heard of the United Nations - and that's where the report comes from. So why give it the name nobody ever heard of?

In fact, this report came out two days ago; and I was wondering why yesterday's paper didn't have the story. Everybody else did.

And what will the oil industry do? Nothing whatever except to step up its propaganda that there is no global warming, mankind is not threatened, oil is good for you. Harper will continue to cut research budgets on the subject.

Let's face reality. No government of any importance is  making any serious efforts to find a fuel for safe energy. The very wealthy who own the oil companies have no interest in that. Again, it's not that they're killers. They're just greedy and stupid, that combination that makes this a psychiatric problem.

What we have to figure out very, very soon is not how to prevent global warming, but how to survive it. City council might consider that before it spends all its money on an events centre.

Cheer up, though, the last paragraphs of the story say that the rich have a much better chance of surviving than the poor.

Norbert is foaming all over the teachers again. It looks very much as though the boss has told him, once again, to step up his attacks on the education system.

As usual, he rants without having a clue what he's talking about. For example - he talks of how statistics show spending is going up but results are not showing improvement.
1. The statistics on spending and results come from different sources. The spending statistics are reliable. The results statistics are not. These come from bozo statistical reports produced by AIMS and similar groups, people who work as propagandists for the Irvings of this world, and who understand very little about the measure of results in education.
2. Education results are also profoundly affected by family circumstances. The poor, for many reasons, none of them their fault, do not usually do as well as others in school.
3. There are also statistics on the rise in the proportion of students staying until the higher grades in high school. Almost all of those come from the families of the poor.
4. The number of teachers increased by 1.5% though enrolment dropped, we are told. Norbert, Canada has historically had classes that were much too big. When I first began teaching grade seven, the board sent us all a note that the classes were big, but that it was working to bring them down to a more suitable number of 18 per class. (My grade seven class was 32). An increase of 1.5% teachers does not strike me as being unreasonable. But what do I know. I'm not a retired editor of a tenth rate newspaper.
5. Then Norbert says that we don't need all those teachers because small classes are no better than big ones. Norbert, I have taught classes of 10, 18, 80 and several hundred. I think it makes a hell of a difference. How many classes of any size have you taught?
6. School results are greatly affected by the atmosphere of the community. And the New Brunswick community is not one that sets minds afire.
Intellectual life in this province exists only in the form of church pancake breakfasts. The people tolerate newspapers designed to keep them uninformed, trivial, and worse. It maintains the weakest library system in Canada. It supports politicians who are openly puppets of billionaires. It allows private interest groups just to walk into its schools and to put on compulsory propaganda as a required course.

The closest word it has to morality is entrepreneurship. It is obsessed with money, and cares little about people.

And you want people to speak and think logically? Norbert, this is a province where people are afraid to speak publicly at all. I have never seen such a timid and fearful population. And the only time I have heard it raise interest in an "educatonal" issue was in deciding whether students should be required to listen to O Canada every day.

6. Norbert feels that children need to learn basic fundamental skills. Norbert, one of the first basic fundamentals is to learn that basic and fundamental mean the same thing.

This is a hopelessly ignorant column. And it is, I think, a servile one. I think there are plans for a big time move of big business into control of our schools. Big business ( sorry, entrepreneurs) will then use them for propaganda - and we will have schools that are the educational equivalents of the Irving press. We're seeing it in Alberta and BC, and even here in one school board so far.

New Brunswickers, some day, you're going to have to learn to speak for yourselves and speak publicly. Otherwise, there is no limit to the abuses the greedy and stupid will heap on you.

Norbert says our biggest budget expenses are health and education. I doubt it. I think our biggest budget item by far is tax cuts and other gifts (including forests) to our billionaires.

Norbert, retire. Turn yourself in at the SPCA.

Alan Cochrane's op ed is the usual staff column of triviality. Don't any of those people employed at the Irving press know anything about anything?

Gaetan Thomas, CEO of NB Power, has a column about good stuff like renewable energy. Alas, it is so vague and so poorly structured that few, including this reader, will have the faintest idea what it's about._

Oh - an advance notice -

On April 24, at New Brunswick Community College, I shall be teaching a course (every Thursday for 6 weeks at 1-3) on the myths of history. Registration is at People's Park Tower on St. George St.

But it's not really a course about history - rather more about thinking about what our images of history are, and how they affect our thinking about ourselves and the rest of the world.
That means we won't all agree on the meaning of any one incident. And that's fine. This is about thinking; there are no compulsory things we have to believe.

For example, Winston Churchill is praised for his steadfastness in World War Two. And so he should be.

When the war ended, he was voted out. And so he should have been.

Racism runs deep in the western world. It has for at least a thousand years. And Canada is no exception. Contrary to myth, many Canadians supported Hitler's hatred of Jews. Racism today in Canada still profoundly affects how we see the world. Governments know that. And they use it.



  1. Nice catch. The Intergovernmental Committee is a promotional unit flogging a tax on energy use via scaremongering about anthropogenic global warming via co2 emissions. Never mind there is no proof of same after decades of trying to dream some up : it is verified by 'peer review' of scientists and a 'consensus' ! : which sounds a heck of a lot better to anyone who has no concept of how scientific method works.
    It really is a reverse Prometheus designed to put control of energy in a globalists' wet dream of a tax on air. My nasty research results on the topic : http://oldephartte.blogspot.ca/p/oz-to-loose-ministry-of-truth-on-posted.html
    If that is too disorganized for your taste try http://www.john-daly.com/ or http://www.climatedebatedaily.com/

  2. Thank you. And good luck in your work with The Flat Earth Society.