Category Archives: Uncategorized

Danish Burnt Rock Vs Homan

I think one of the curiosities about the Olympics is the interrelationships among athletes. I enjoy witnessing the camaraderie and encouragement and empathy. Tonight, gold medal skater Hanyu dispossessed from his achievement expressed kindness toward the fourth place skater who was bumped from the bronze position. Snowboard cross women exchanged hugs at the bottom in spite of competitive ire and national difference. A cross country ski coach in Sochi aided an opposing nation’s skier with substitute equipment during an on course equipment crisis.    

However; sometimes the heat of a competitive moment can supersede the spirit of the occasion thereby tainting judgment.  Unfortunately, this was the case when Rachel Homan decided to eliminate a Danish stone after a broom knick burning the rock just as it came to rest in the house.  It was within her rights via the rules, but curling decorum and good sportsmanship dictates that best judgment is utilized in the spirit of fair play. Curlers overwhelmingly in such a situation defer to the option of placing the rock as it would have rested in absence of the incidental and accidental foul. 

With a Homan rink rough start to the 2018 Olympic tournament, CBC commentator Mike Harris aptly remarked that to date performance could have impacted her decision. I suggest that her youth may have also played a role in her hasty decision. She is a talented curler who has virtuously battled her way to the top and appreciably upon arrival that instinct is not easily dismissed in delicate spots. I’ll cut her some slack and I’m certain the experience will groom her for better decision making going forward. It’s not the black mark on the Canadian flag which some pundits postulate. 

One Big Stock Market Caution

It’s called “short selling” and 95 per cent of investors have no clue what this legal form of trading is and what it can do to them. You see -investment professionals have an inside track on the markets. Unlike yourself, they watch the “ticker” by the minute throughout the trading day. They are more interested in short term fluctuations and any newsworthy event that can spark blips on the chart.

Regulators have also provided traders with a mechanism to keep markets liquid. When bids are few, “market makers” can jump in to facilitate trading activity. Short selling can be viewed as a component of market making whereby investment brokerages “borrow” securities from somebody’s portfolio (even yours) and sell them into the market looking to buy back later at a lower price.  Sound dodgy? Well – completely legal. Apply this apparatus to the professional investor’s inside track and suddenly you the naive holder of stock position without a stock certificate in your possession becomes the conduit of an investment brokerage’s profit.

Every year around this time, folks invest more in the market irrespective of the quality of stock in the market in order to qualify for an RRSP deduction. Yes, some utilize GIC’s but most will invest in mutual funds which are completely exposed to the market’s peculiar system of operation. Hence; you need to monitor your financial advisor.    

 

Blatchford and DiManno on Patrick Brown

What does this blogger think about the demise of ex-Ontario Conservative party leader Patrick Brown. I think it’s sad on all fronts. I’m sad that this man may lack gentleman like courtship etiquette. I’m sad that the anonymous “of age” teenagers were naive enough to put themselves in his private company under the influence of alcohol if they weren’t interested in entertaining an advance. I’m sad that there has been a jump to judgment. I’m sad that there may have been nothing illegal about the encounters and hence there would have been nothing to report at the time and hence nothing material to report now with an upcoming provincial election looming. I’m sad that politicians are referring to these women as “brave” when they have not put themselves in front of a camera identifying themselves in the context of bringing down a man who would have potentially been running the province. I’m sad that few men who may question the veracity of the #metoo campaign will be willing to verbalize for fear of being viewed as “one of them”. I’m sad that our justice system has become light on sanctions of illegal misconduct. I’m sad that people may repress wholesome sex appeal and refrain from socializing with thoughts of distrust amidst feelings of anxiety. I’m sad that select women have been willing to withstand sexual oppression in exchange for profit but then condemn it when convenient. I’m sad that public discourse by elected officials hired by me to serve my country is preoccupied with matters which should be before the courts instead of parliamentary halls. I’m sad that my Prime Minister is so keen to jump to the podium at every incident of reported transgression in his sentient effort of shoring up a political base. I’m sad for dual income parents with children who haven’t taken enough time to teach their kids self worth.

However; I’m grateful for Canadian journalists like Rosie DiManno and Christie Blatchford willing to project the value of due process into the #metoo mantra. I’m grateful for the enormous sector of women who know exactly how to handle a man’s advance if not interested. I’m grateful for the apparent liberty still available today for the single man to pursue his ultimate mate and vice versa. Despite system flaws, I’m grateful that women have a legal mechanism available day and night with no requirement to delay in which to report incidents which can lead to criminal prosecution.           

    

#Metoo Asks “Where’s The Men”?

A Calgary Herald editorial today has asked the question, “where’s the men?” on the topic of the #metoo campaign. I thought I’d take up the challenge.

My thoughts are quite specific and they are going to be controversial. Naturally, men are scarce because if they speak the truth they know they’ll be castigated.  

Our legal system serves the legal profession more than it serves its citizens. Fees are absurdly high and the process is cumbersome to the point that people conceptualize any reward not worth the emotional and financial cost of pursuit. In fact, law enforcement can be outright condescending in hearing cases of harm. Hence; cases of sexual misconduct have gone unreported. Unfortunately, in some situations in the work place women have taken the deal of professional advancement in return for sex. Fast forward years and decades later in a new era whereby women feel more empowered in spite of a legal system still inefficient, men witness these women having derived financial strength upon compromising their integrity through either sleeping with the boss or not reporting incidents of sexual impropriety now call out with the full power of their lungs excoriating these men who had been conditioned to think that their behaviour was okay. Hundreds and maybe thousands of victims could have been saved had you acted then! 

The #metoo campaign apparently fails to comprehend that their message has been undermined by years of failing to exercise their power in the context of laws which have indeed been in place to protect them. Men perceive their lack of willingness to have called them out as either complicity in the context of financial gain, or weakness in asserting their rights.

Gratefully women now feel more empowered and men potentially will be behaving better while our legal systems, professional bodies, and trade organizations do the necessary navel gazing in order to administer justice fairly and expeditiously.         

While all women should seek the recourse and justice they deserve, I suggest that this #metoo campaign now be deactivated because it’s served its purpose and any continuing reference to it at this point will only serve to divide rather than heal.

The Emperor’s Club, A Fifteen Year Foreshadow?

Certainly Donald Trump wouldn’t have carried the school boy swagger of Sedgwick Bell but the type casting in their privilege, quest for political theatre, and propensity for a wayward deed puts

    The Emperor’s Club

back in the limelight in 2017. Set at St. Benedicts boys school, actor Kevin Kline (Mr. Hundert) earnestly teaches Greek / Roman history to boys enraptured by the antics of classmate Bell. A dynamic relationship of mentorship between teacher and student ensues after some fuel filled words of motivation from Sentator dad, Mr. Bell.

Subsequently, the quest for class Julius Caesar (contest) is transfixed by one class clown turned book worm while the teacher pupil dynamic imbibes a particular value based reference (saving you plot). Boys’ adolescent wonderment is served along with theatrics of competitive scholastics.

Their twenty-five year class reunion marked an occasion for testing the virtue of time on past fortunes of fate.

Professional critics give acclaim while general audience were left indifferent. Personally, I found protagonists to deliver poignantly with a message direly needed fifteen years hence in the context of government’s ethical ambiguities.

Top Ten Traits of the Trump White House Employee

  1. Employment insurance benefits have run out
  2. You’re indebted to Trump
  3. Conducting sociology of patronage lab experiment
  4. Sado-masochistic tendencies
  5. Parole condition
  6. Transferee from broke Atlantic City casino gaming pit
  7. Flunked communications studies
  8. Possess twitter account with voluminous redneck followers
  9. Diagnosed with attention deficit disorder
  10. Wear suits with the Trump label

Boy Scouts Speechless After Speech

I suspect that an astute POTUS would have went away from the teleprompter having sensed that the wrong speech was loaded up for the Boy Scout brigade and made light of the error while creatively addressing curious boys with merits of their organization, benefits of community service, nation building through team cooperation etc.  Instead, I guess Trump will castigate and maybe fire some guy handling speeches. Does anybody have a snapshot of the look on the face of some Scoutmaster bemused by Trump’s ramblings over political hardship amongst innocent boys eager for a return to scheduled jamboree fun?

Founding Fathers Never Envisioned Trump

I suppose some people are surprised this morning upon reading news of Trump’s latest despicable tweets (referencing MSNBC Morning Joe hosts).  Frankly I’m not when one takes a hard look at the character of the man in lieu of his behavior during the presidential campaign where he mocked a disabled man, made reference reporter Megyn Kelly’s biological cycle during a verbal interlude between them, felt compelled with reactionary immaturity and obvious low self esteem to make a Phallic reference to his hands on national TV, outright insulted presidential candidate Rand Paul during debate, proudly bragged about “grabbing women’s genitals” during an apparent “locker room talk” encounter, not to mention the more innocuous yet disturbing insults obviously wielded during his storied law suit infested career.

Parents, I understand the task of isolating this anomaly as an outlier of the success formula as you go about your duty of teaching principles of success, kindness, respect, and dignity to your kids.  It’s simply too bad that this outlier happened to climb atop the highest office in the land.  Let it be a lesson to those in the positions of political power that if you ignore or marginalize a segment of society and this segment mutates aggressively, expect the unexpected and the potential for a degradation in your espoused values when they assign a leader such as Donald Trump.

Some News Satire for June 20, 2017

“Trump is averaging 2.1 false claims per day” (The Toronto Star).  You wouldn’t say.

Attorney General of the U.S. Jeff Sessions hires a private lawyer.  LOL.

Matador gets killed on the job.  News worthy?  Have you seen what they do for a living?

Megyn Kelly takes on Alex Jones over Sandy Hook.  Thanks for givin’ it the good ‘ol college try Megyn.

Jason Kenney calls for strict candidate screening for new Alberta party.  The smaller the field, better chances for him perhaps?

Calgary deploys flood mitigation effort.  Little late wouldn’t you say?

Baby fighting for first breath underwater in bath tub birth develops Legionnaires disease.  Perhaps, there’s a message here somewhere.

NTSB decides not to draw a conclusion after self driving Tesla car crashes in Florida having learned that system commander recommended seven times that driver take over.