Sunday, November 22, 2015
Nov. 22: odd computer problems. Have I become a terrorist threat?
In recent days, I have suffered computer problems. Yesterday, it was the disappearance of my paragraph structure after I published my blog. I didn't notice it for a couple of hours. In fact, all the problems have affected only my blog. As well, none of the problems is repeated. I get a new one each time. Call me paranoid, but there's a lot of coincidence in there. I wish for luck today. I was astonished to see, on yesterday's page A6, a large ad from a gun store called the smoking gun. It seems to specialize in guns for the mentally disturbed. All its rifles and shotguns are designed to look like military weapons, sometimes with suggestive names like the Churchill 'tactical' grip shotgun,, the Escort Marine, the Extreme defender. Then there's the Churchill shotgun with a 14” barrel, way too short for any purpose but killing people at short range. Some have stocks modelled on the German light machine guns of World War Two. This can have no use except for selling guns to people who know nothing about them, but like the macho. Some rifles use the 9 mm pistol cartridge, useful only for killing people up close. Some have monster magazine capacities, just in case there are more than three RCMP officers to kill. Few of these guns are of any use at all for hunting. None is of any use for target shooting. When three of our police officers were murdered last year, Moncton went into an ecstasy of signs saying “Thank you to our police” and of planning memorials. But it hasn't done a damn thing of any value to protect them. Where were the newspaper stories to ask where the killer got his guns, and how he got them? Nobody asked what our gun ownership laws are. Nobody demanded the renewal of registries so police can know who has these guns. Nobody demanded we get tougher gun laws – and closer observation of shooting ranges. We now have a voice in Ottawa. And Gallant now has a voice in Ottawa. And the prime minister in Ottawa is not Stephen Harper. So where are you, Irving press. (Oh, sorry. I forgot. You would lose an advertiser.) Now, I have some readings for us to catch up on. The opinion below is on a topic we rarely think of. But it's as important as climate change, and a lot more important that ISIS. http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/nov/19/population-crisis-farm-animals-laying-waste-to-planet Another item the Irving press overlooked is the crisis of water in Detroit. A fundamental need – perhaps the most fundamental need – for human life is water. The city of Detroit is cutting off water to tens of thousands of its residents because they can't afford to pay for it. Google for photos and videos of Detroit. It was bad enough when I saw it many years ago, especially in the black districts. I saw houses with people living in them, and with great holes in the roofs. Now, there are far, far fewer people. That's thanks to free trade agreements that allowed the auto industry to move out so it could improve profits with cheap, cheap foreign labour that had no unions to protect them. And which had police ready to take out “troublemakers”. Now, Detroit is vile with high, high rates of poverty and even higher rates of violence. And if you can't pay for water, tough luck. In fact, American business has often used the American government to force countries receiving aid to privatize their water systems. Every drop of water that falls from the sky is privatized. And many of the poor can't pay for it. Tough. There's a wage gap? Some day, the rich will shower all their wealth down to everybody. Yes. It's called “trickle down”. Too bad the U.S. will be in chaos long before that will happen. The next site is rather a long one. But it's worth reading it to see how the current crisis is a direct product of the Iraq invasion, and how the U.S. became linked with Muslim “terrorists”. (Actually, I would have taken it back further – to the Russian invasion of Afghanistan, and the American equipping and training of al Quaeda and others to fight that war. Many civil wars and “intrusions” have begun with the CIA and other agencies equipping others to fight wars that are to the advantage of the U.S.) http://interactive.aljazeera.com/aje/2015/riseofisil/index.html?utm_source=Al+Jazeera+English+Newsletter+%7C+Weekly&utm_campaign=63a429bb27-weekly_newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_e427298a68-63a429bb27-224603881 The story below has only a few lines because this is not my usual, free copy of Haaretz. It's just a teaser to get a subscription. However, the first sentences make the point. In the late 1930s and most of the 40s, Jews were forbidden to enter the U.S. or Canada. They were seen very much as North Americans today see Muslims. Racism and bigotry are nothing new for us. http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.687006?utm_content=For+U.S.+Jews%2C+a+double-edged+refugee+clash+precedent&utm_medium=Daily&utm_source=email&utm_campaign=newsletter The following is a letter by an American senator to Assad in Syria. It speaks for itself. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article43500.htm Then let's go back to the record of the U.S. (much like that of Canada) in accepting refugees. This one takes it back to the great Irish migration of the famine years. Irish could still expect discrimination in Canada for almost a century after their arrival. In the First World War, Canada turned back a shipload of Hindu refugees – even though we knew there was a German raider on the loose that would sink the ship, killing all aboard if it found it. Well, it was the only Christian thing to do. http://www.npr.org/2015/11/21/456857350/this-isnt-the-first-time-americans-have-shown-fear-of-refugees The following is a speech by Bernie Sanders who is running for president on a Democratic-Socialist ticket. But Bernie Sanders is not supported by the very wealthy or by the news media they own. Any Republican or Democrat candidate for president will be a candidate with a very big campaign fund. Any Republican candidate is almost certain to be a warhawk. And Hillary Clinton is worse than the worst possible Republican candidate. Funny the Irving press never talks much about Sanders. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article43488.htm Have you noticed that the Irving press seems to have stopped Gwynne Dyer's columns? I guess it's cheaper to get free ones from hack politicians. Anyway, fret not. You can find all of Dyer's columns at the following site. http://gwynnedyer.com/ Germany has now accepted some 900,000 immigrants. That far, far outstrips Britain, France, Canada and the U.S. all put together. We, meanwhile, are going to leave an uncountable number of those refugees in tents through the winter and in countries that don't want them, lacking enough food to survive, and suffering disease prison camp conditions. That's odd. When I was a little boy in school, I was taught that the Germans were the evil ones.