With all the testimony this week on Capitol Hill, believe it
or not there are still pockets of republican law makers squealing with
disbelief still that Trump is guilty as charged. Jim Jordan may be the last man standing and
late night stand up acts will certainly be targeting him for his formulation of
logic. Devin Nunes was another Republican so stained in partisanship over facts
that he thought that somehow by referencing “poor TV ratings” in an
intelligence hearing he’d sway the argument. With all the history of Trump’s
lies, deceit, attacks on the vulnerable, twitter tirades, spinning of a
conspiracy theory (Obama’s birth), associations with criminals (Manafort for
one), apparent deeds of sexual harassment according to some 16 women, countless
civil court cases prior to Presidency, obfuscation of publicizing financial
history (tax returns), personal attacks on citizens competing for presidential
nomination, business intent to operate in corrupt Russia, Mr. Nunes somehow
thought by referencing old newspaper headlines that conflating matters would
help his defence of this sham of a man, Trump.
It’s been a harrowing display of partisanship and very disappointing to witness this presidency along with Trump’s character to those who hold justice dear. It was a great experiment in populism projected onto the American people by voters contemptuous of being marginalized with powerlessness. Ironically, the man sent to Washington to address matters of the powerless has abused the power bestowed upon him and a lot of folks saw it coming including yours truly.
If one fails to
exercise objective thought in the face of political philosophy in a democracy,
there are implications. If one turns a blind eye, one will be caught. It may
not be today or tomorrow, but the facts will emerge. A steadfast adherence to
ideology is healthy but if the implementation of such ideology requires the
suppression and disregard to basic values and human rights, then such
implementation in democratic form will require a reset in order to extinguish
such aberrant conduct. While the trait of loyalty has absolute merit in the
context of executing team cause, blind loyalty tarnished with misdeed has inevitable
negative consequences including collateral damage. As a result of this Trump
debacle, it becomes apparent that the whistle blower provision worked and
thankfully there was an American sharp enough to step forward for the good of
country and his / her fellow patriot to out this reprehensible conduct of
bargaining political gain with earmarked military aid.
Incredulously, there is still the remote possibility that
Republicans will grasp at some kind of rationale for defending a no vote to
impeachment if proceedings actually make it to trial in absence of Trump’s
resignation. I am one conservative ideologue not blinded by partisan ideology
but strident in articulating repercussions from being stubborn and outright
indignant toward thoughtful discourse.
The University of Alberta is actually a pretty good school but continues to bestow honorary degrees. Despite Ron MacLean being a “good guy”, in my estimation he should not be awarded a “degree” from my Alma Mater if he has not earned it. Nor should have David Suzuki or any other recipient be awarded an “Honorary Degree”.
You see, the process of earning a degree requires work and sacrifice. One undertakes course work as an adult in pursuit of career knowledge. Course work may also entail studies of the humanities as supplemental to ones’ core discipline. In fact, at the end of a bachelor’s program, one is positioned to advance a discipline through post graduate studies and research. Those who make it through a Bachelor’s program have sacrificed finance in achieving a “parchment”, likely have undertaken debt, and have consequently have made a personal investment in their profession. Awarding “honorary degrees” to individuals for accomplishments outside the realm of academic endeavour having not completed prescribed curriculum simply debases the degree and frankly offends those who sacrificed in actualizing the requirements set forth from day one. I speak for myself and obviously others but not all.
Do specific citizens deserve recognition aside from that
obtained from community, family, and career compensation? Yes. I do not object
to governments, charities, communities, and sports and arts associations from
awarding its contributors. However; university honorary degrees are simply
The U of A will once again call me this year looking for a “donation”.
Unfortunately, the first year student volunteering his / her time to make the
call will be confronted with my indignant response. This individual in his /
her youth and inexperience to much monetary and absolute in opinion will be
perplexed that such a defined position will be taken.
Colin Kaepernick had a very good 2013 season with the San
Francisco 49ers. It’s been tough to miss him through the news cycle since.
Kaepernick rightfully latched onto the civil rights issue associated with the
Rodney King incident and other precursors galvanizing support toward the Black
Lives Matter movement. Unfortunately, he decided to use his celebrity as a
football player on the sports field as a means for showing his support for the
cause while connecting the matter with disloyalty toward his country. He got
black balled and he should have seen that coming. You see, employers in a free capitalist society
have the right to hire based on their variables deemed important for success.
Disloyalty toward country makes a character statement and potentially
correlates with potential behaviour when it comes to “team interest”. When the
going gets tough, are you going to fold up tent or fight within the means
available to you under a constitution? He chose to whimper in the easiest form
of protest conveniently available to him. I wish him well. He seems sharp and I
suspect he will be able to translate his sporting competitiveness into another
avenue of success.
If you live in Western Canada and you don’t have a winter sport…consider downhill skiing. Here’s why I enjoy it so much.
It’s outside of your routine and you’ll be
amongst others like minded and keen in their pursuit of adventure
You’ll be astonished by the horizon draped
in glaciated peaks as you take a moment having exited the mountain’s highest
You’ll be trading stories about mountains,
runs, conditions, and travel.
Carving the snow and negotiating terrain
become objectives of pursuit. A skill set develops in the spirit of continuous
You will forget your day job. You will have
Start with lessons and advance. There is no
rush. You will not break a leg. Equipment offers protection.
Can you advance in terrain from season to season and challenge your fears?
Experience uniqueness in every mountain and
It’s something you guys can do together.
No two ski trips will be alike.
The man has always been a blow hard advocating violence on
the ice while goading groups against one another whether it be the Players
Association versus the NHL, Swedes vs Canadians, fighters versus non-fighters
or referees versus players. It’s what Canadians have apparently wanted due to
the ratings on Hockey Night In Canada’s first intermission for three decades. I
for one have always seen him for what he is and that is a personality looking
to bait fans from a pulpit that has always frankly been in place for him due to
questionable decisions on every occasion when it’s time for executives to renew
his contract. Politicizing the game of hockey on a Saturday night or talking
player contracts when sitting in front of the TV with family has never made any
sense to me. In spite of my admiration for Ron McLean he has always operated as
a fuel hose for Don during the HNIC segment which in and of itself seemed
dysfunctional. Am I surprised that Ron has been caught in the crossfire? No. He
appeared to be nodding as usual while Cherry ranted about poppies and “you
people” in spite of what I believe is not actually what’s in Ron’s heart.
Frankly, this is what media executives should expect when ratings and a
populous perception of a personality become superimposing variables in
personnel decision making.
Now to the words themselves. Don believed in what he was saying. He believes that people on the streets of Mississauga are not wearing poppies like they used to and it’s obvious that the ethnicity of Mississauga and downtown Toronto has changed immensely over the decades because of immigration. I don’t think he’s wrong in what he’s said in reference to the prevalence of poppies given my experience in North East Calgary. I also believe that with every passing generation, memories will fade and the sense of sacrifice of WWI and WWII veterans will lessen irrespective of skin color. I absolutely witness forgetfulness in government policy particularly with respect to the infringement on freedom via tax and regulatory policy. Referencing people as “you people” is not politically correct and could be viewed as racist. The reference is distasteful as is his character which I came to perceive early on in his days as a commentator in stark contrast to the viewpoint of so many white men. This is his schtick pitting people up against each other. This is an 85 year old man with a limited time spot in order to articulate a message in which HNIC executives unfortunately have condoned simply by renewing his contract and having experience with his history for brashness and off-ice faceoffs. However; I still deem their apology sincere. BTW….still thriving from having cut off my cable TV in 2014.
Denis Shapovalov had an opportunity to become the first
Canadian male tennis player to win a Masters 1000 (most senior level
professional tournament equivalent to a Grand Slam) Series event today matched
up against the number one player in the world, Djokovic. BTW, we still call all
these athletes that leave Canada due to high taxation levels here Canadian in
spite of their departure to tax havens. They like to keep the warmth of our
country in their heart while paying tax abroad. Few really call this fact into
question with respect to any semblance of National allegiance. The athletes
certainly aren’t to blame but it is interesting how we still like to dress them
with the Maple Leaf and discount the lay of the land.
What if Canadian star athletes decided to stay in Canada?
Certainly, governments would benefit from a return of capital on any funding
awarded to athletes in lieu of their elite athletic status during years of
development. This is not to say that particular athletes don’t give back to
Canada upon capturing success in ways other than a direct return of such
government sponsored funding. Then there’s the direct taxation for domestic prize
pools associated with Canadian events such as the Rogers Cup. Residents are expected
to report their world wide income whereas non-residents to do not. In spite of
tax credits awarded to residents for foreign tax paid, the high tax rates in
Canada would most likely supersede tax credits.
Non-residents are expected to pay Canadian tax for earnings on Canadian
In all this hype from the media regarding Bank of Canada
interest rate decisions, and with the charade performed in front of cameras by
sharp dressed smooth talking regulators…..the fact is that a 0.25 “basis” point
move is not going to make one iota of difference when chartered banks have been
widening the differential between retail unsecured rates and the overnight rate
unchecked. Alberta has an “ombudsman” to deal with parties feeling aggrieved by
services administered by the province.
From the standpoint of making complaints against the banking system, you would turn to “The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions”. This agency claims to be “independent” and in the context of interest rate policy whereby any party feels aggrieved, this agency will turn to “usury law” in deliberating the matter of any perceived injustice in interest rate administration. Chartered banks still have lots of leeway available to them in the context of widening retail secured and unsecured rates.
I’m afraid our media is asking the wrong question when facilitating a discussion of the huge headline made yesterday over at the Business News Network, “Canadians Drowning In Debt As 47% Struggle To Cover Costs: MNP”.
Look out Fernie / Sparwood / Blairmore…you’re next. Teck
laying off 500….and it’s yet to be reported exactly where the blue chip miner
is going to apply its cuts. Their steel producing coal isn’t quite as appealing
to the markets. Could it be time to start promoting golf courses and casinos with
the forestry industry also in the doldrums? The sleepy towns of Cranbrook and
Kimberley get by (barely) with the closing of Cominco years ago. This corner of
B.C. is still holding on to some semblance of conservative values in the face
of a rising industrial backlash but it could all be about tourism once the next
movie star catches a glimpse of the Teck open pits fuelling rhetoric for light
Last night while driving home from work, the main drag was
congested so I took a residential route. Naturally, I slowed down to 30km per
hour while driving through a playground zone. As is often the case, there was a
pick-up truck right on my back bumper. I pulled over and let him pass.
Tailgating is an epidemic and law enforcement isn’t interested in pursuing this
infraction with tickets. Drivers will have a propensity for checking their rear
view mirror to see how much closer the ahole is going to get when they should
be keeping an eye out for for children.
Now, imagine driving through this zone at a crawl and then
confronted with a new reduced 40km per hour limit after the playground zone instead
of 50. People will be perturbed while now thinking about what they’re going to
make for dinner or thoughts of being late to pick up the kids. Their focus will
not be on driving as it would be at a reasonable speed of 50km per hour for the
One thing is for sure – if the residential speed limit is
reduced to 40km / hr then a municipality will have more revenues from speeding
tickets generated through camera catches that it would at a speed of 50 km /hr.
We would hope that child safety is the motivator for
considering such a change but I’m suspect. The current residential speed limit
has served Canadians well for decades. Current infractions on the books such as
“failure to stop”, “crosswalk incursions”, “failure to stop in advance of a
stop line”, “failure to signal” do not get enforced. , “Failure to turn into
nearest lane”, “unsafe lane changes”, and “failure to give distance” don’t
apparently get taught in driver’s school or are simply disregarded due to
drivers understanding that sanctions against such poor driving habits will not
You have bloated bureaucracies in Canada looking for places
to turn their attention when what they need to do is execute their current
agenda with precision.
Lastly, you will have mothers who believe this is a good
proposal. I suggest that strong parenting along with common sense supervision
has worked for decades when it comes to children and traffic law.
Canadians condone their national leader in obstructing
justice by casting votes in his direction.
Party leaders oblivious to work schedules (bed times) of
Canadians by delaying speeches in spite of certainty of outcome and botching their
coordination as possible foreshadowing of a dysfunctional minority government.
Failure of pundits to articulate platform of the big winner of the night – Bloc Quebecois, and table thoughts on the degree of their separatist intentions.
Jagmeet Singh obviously still self aggrandizing in his new found stature by speaking at nauseous lengths thanking everyone but his dog as folks sought some semblance of a coherent thought in line with his seat reduction.
A broken country. You
have Quebecers who want all the benefits of being in Canada yet vote like
traitors to the nation. You have elite Ontarians daft in thinking we can pay
our bills through a service driven economy while deficits and the debt
accelerate. You have Maritimers fearful of losing their pogey. You have British
Columbians split through a rural / urban dichotomy. You have the prairies tired
of paying the bills watching politicians trumpet rhetoric with gold plated
You have a pretty elaborate CBC set hosting like sixteen
pundits paid by your tax dollars…all to tell you what you already know. One such
pundit seemed compelled by the occasion to tell a losing MP that she loves her.
Mayor of Calgary, Naheed Nenshi , shows up and actually made sense.
A vain Prime Minister with an embarrassing aloof speech attempting to sound statesman like in his boyhood manner.
A sense that Andrew Scheer may lack the fire in his belly necessary to energize positive change.