Wow, it's been a long while since I've written anything. I know why, the direction of the world is making me angry and sad and I don't wish to be an angry, sad person. Well, this latest development locally annoyed me enough that I MUST WRITE OR MENTALLY IMPLODE!
Environmental groups have decided that now is the time to stop ring road construction. The rest of the ring road is finished but the SW sits in limbo… again.
The planning for the ring road began more than 40 years ago. 30’ish years ago, the province purchased most of the required land for it’s construction, it’s not like the southwest leg just happened. 70 kms of the total 101 km of this ring road is finished BUT NOW environmentalists decide to stall it AND the government said “sure, why the hell not, it’s only tax payer money funnelling down the drain! What’s $100,000/day between friends?”
It’s obvious that these groups waited until construction was well under way so that the road builders would be paying a horrendous amount per day for the work stoppage. Are they trying (again) to simply put people out of work, because you know, people love it that. Environmental concern is more important than honest work… always.
These environmentalists are making the complaint that the bridge project going over the Weaselhead will disrupt the natural environment and put wetlands at risk. THE WEASELHEAD WAS BUILT IN THE 1980’S AND WAS A MILITARY SHELLING RANGE BEFORE THAT! Explosives get found in there a little more regularly than is comfortable. There are actual danger signs now.
THIS WARNING IS IN WEASELHEAD FLATS!
If construction isn’t done on time, the land reverts to the Tsuu T’ina. The environmentalists are probably going to try and make that happen! They obviously aren’t Alberta tax payers OR people who want or need the ring road! In my opinion, traffic that can be diverted onto the ring road and away from our overly busy inner city streets is a good thing!
The ring road needs to be finished. It’s been sitting in limbo for so long and when there was finally light at the end of THAT tunnel, we rejoiced. I should have known better, I should have known all the consultations that happened years ago wasn’t enough. I should have known that all the signs that said “Transportation Utility Corridor” and explained what that meant wasn’t enough. They were only around for like ever. I should have know that all the talk about getting this thing done was a farce but I actually believed it would get finished this time.
I have to stop getting my hopes up. I have to stop thinking that maybe, just maybe governments would respect the citizens/taxpayers of… anywhere. It’s time to face reality and realize that people who don’t care about anything always get the power of no and voting taxpayers only matter at tax time and election time.
Perhaps this will change, but I doubt it. The problems with getting the ring road finished is simply indicative of every single problem we’re having at every level of government. Is there perhaps another planet I can move to, that doesn’t suffer these issues? No? I didn’t think so.
Look, Justin. Everything the light touches is our kingdom.
A king's time as ruler rises and falls like the sun. One day, Justin, the sun will set on my time here, and will rise with you as the new king.
I will help the little people, increase taxes on your employers and prevent any industry from doing business!
I'll make sure that Canadians are taxed so hard they cannot afford luxuries like groceries in an effort to protect the environment! It worked well in Ontario!
I will run a transparent government, just like the Mayor of Calgary, Alberta! According to him, NO ONE disagrees with him! When you put cotton in your ears, no one can!
I know that taxpayers are at their limit but I don't care! Since I was born into extreme wealth, I have no concept of money! I plan on spending more in the next 4 years than Harper ever did!
You see, I'm only a drama teacher with no political experience whatsoever so I haven't planned on HOW I'll pay for all of my promises, I'll just invent money from somewhere. Maybe I'll go to Zimbabwe and ask Robert Mugabe how he made everyone trillionaires!
Realistically though, marijuana is all that matters. I only like it because the Conservatives hate it and I'll run the country into the ground in an effort to legalize it. Mary Jane is my best friend and she should be yours too!
Justin, it has always been your destiny to rule Canada. Take the throne that I have left you and rule with an iron fist! Well, you don't have an iron fist... nevermind. Just don't fuck it up too badly, k.
This satirical moment brought to you by "The Island of Bob Broadcasting Corporation." I hope all of you who voted in Trudeau get what you deserve. I, on the other hand, plan on moving to Tau Ceti. I hear it's gorgeous this time of year.
Original Link - 27 Images That Show It May Already Be Too Late
A slacktivist, limousine liberal, environmentally hysterical post hit my Facebook timeline and I just couldn't ignore it. I didn't want to look. I could have closed my browser. I could have just enjoyed my day, played my video game and carried on with my life. Who am I kidding? This post and others like it annoy me... a lot. So much so that I'm writing when I want to be relaxing.
Misinformational tear-jerky, pessimistic, judgement day type posts like this need a response. I tried to ignore it. I tried to look away, but I just couldn’t. I looked, became increasingly annoyed and now I’m writing.
For the record, if I had planned to be sitting in front of my computer all day, I'd rather be editing photographs that I took a week ago.
Mexico City is one of the world's megacities. It has a population density of 9,800 people/ km2. That is insane yet not the most densely populated city in the world. Now, one has to ask, why are megacities happening? Well, urbanization would be the answer. People cannot make a living in rural areas anymore so they move to cities to make their living. Mexico City not the only city in Mexico - it just happens to be the largest.
How does anyone stop a city from growing? Well, in all reality, no one can. As long as people cannot make a living in rural communities, urbanization will happen.
I've done some research on this. There are countries in the world that still permit trade in ivory. As far as I can tell, to acquire the ivory, hunters poach and there isn't a lot being done about it. It brings money into the countries that “permit” poaching so there isn't a lot of incentive to stop them. It's even happened on some conservation lands. I DO NOT agree with the modern day ivory trade. There's no reason and no excuse for it. As far as I'm concerned, flesh eating bacteria are far better people than poachers.
For a time, there was slash and burn deforestation in the Amazon. The reason (not a justification) was, farmers could not manage their crops. Farmland would weed quickly and would lose soil fertility in no time so the farmers would move on and create more pastures.
There is also a perception that logging is causing a great deal of deforestation. It's been discovered through this thing called research and observation that deforestation causes precipitation to decrease over the forest. Less rain means less regrowth. Logging is just not economical nor is converting the forest the pastoral fields.
Deforestation has declined A LOT since 2004. People, in general, have realized if your renewable natural resource doesn't renew, there's no point in using it up. It doesn't do anyone any good.
Cool time lapsed photo. As long as people want to travel by air, there will be air traffic. Air traffic is good for global economy. People go all over the world, spend money multi-nationality, make business deals and order product to be shipped by air; well, to explain why air transportation is necessary as simply as possible that is. Air traffic is a good thing and in high demand.
Oh, if that photo freaks you out, watch these awesome videos; they show air and ship travel from space and over specified time periods.
This Is How Air Traffic Between Europe And North America Looks
Global ship traffic seen from space
JRC reveals global traffic routes using LRIT ship tracking data
How else is cargo suppose to be delivered? By ox and cart? On people's backs? Motorcycle? Oh, bicycle, I understand.
So, just to see this photo, it's a guy with his hand over his nose and mouth. Anyone with a camera can ask a guy to pose. It's nothing without the caption.
There is agreement that the Yellow River is polluted but how much is up in the air. Any data that is produced is questionable at best so I can't argue for or against the meaning behind the photo.
I believe this incinerator is in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh. It is another megacity. Incineration is a valid method to deal with the ever expanding landfill and waste problem that comes with megacities. Vaporize the waste and you don't have the mass or infectious diseases of contemporary landfills to deal with. Dhaka produces 5,000 tonnes of waste each day. That has to go somewhere. What I find interesting is, this incinerator is part of a “waste-to-energy” program. Right now, the incinerators produce 10 megawatts of energy per day. They want to increase that to 50 megawatts within 3 years.
Alright, seriously, HOW can anyone even put “a direct result of climate change” in a caption and not expect to be challenged? Prove that. Drought happens. Forest fires happen. They always have, they always will. I actually just watched a documentary on mega-droughts that happened 1000 years ago in North America that made the Dust Bowl look perfectly stormy so saying "a direct result of climate change" needs absolute evidence. Oh ya, and climate changes all the time. It was cold and rainy this morning, it's warm and sunny this afternoon.
This is the SECOND picture attacking the oil sands. I live in Alberta so this one hits close to home. Let's begin. The original picture decrying the oil sands was posted on the internet using computers, tablets or mobile phones. Those have plastics in them which is a petroleum product. To get on the internet, electricity is kind of a necessity. Oh, I'm guessing the various posters, reposters, environmentalists and so forth live in houses, apartments or huts and petroleum products were used to build them. Delivery of the various bits of their homes were done by truck. I can do this for days!
Let's talk about the actual oil sands. Geologically, the area is an exposed Cretaceous oil sands deposit,. “Environmentalists” could take dramatic photos whether people were there removing the oil or not. There just might not be roads to make the area look that much more "devastated."
Removing oil from the oil sands is more like environmental restoration then anything. Once the oil (that has been there for AT LEAST 65 million years) is removed, vegetation can start growing in the area.
Oh, hey! Another megacity! On September 16, 2014, 6,196 megawatts of electricity was used in the city of Los Angeles. That sounds oddly calculable.
This is completely wrong. This is a picture of Ghost Forest on the Oregon Coast. These stumps were unearthed in 1997 and are only rarely visible. In the year 1700, an earthquake killed the forest and buried it under sand.
This forest sits on the Cascadia Subduction Zone or Cascadia Fault. It runs from Vancouver Island to California. It is the spot where two tectonic plates meet.
Oh, ya, thanks by the way. Oregon is one place in the west I haven't been and now I have to go, in the winter, WITH tide tables. I'll be sitting out there, with my camera SPECIFICALLY TO GET PHOTOS OF 2000 YEAR OLD STUMPS IN WATER! I'm not sure if I hate the poster or like the poster for THIS one.
Yes, this is 26,000 hectares of greenhouses. More than half of Europe's fruits and vegetables are grown here. These greenhouses provide $1.5 billion in revenue and is the economy of Almeria. Now, why are they localized to this one area? Well, this area is very dry. 35 years ago, when they began building the greenhouses, the area only received 2 cm of rain per year. This is also the area where they filmed the ever so famous “spaghetti westerns.” This isn't important, it's just a neat bit of trivia.
It has been discovered however, that the reflective roofs of the greenhouses have been cooling the area down. The average temperature has dropped by 1.5 degrees Celsius over the last 50 years.
So, I found this exact photo on a stock photography website. That alone creates skepticism galore. Anyone who knows me knows I would be very biased against this picture and if real, I would desire to hunt the poachers myself. Tigers are the most beautiful creature in the world. The only animal I love more than tigers are snow leopards. But to find a “poacher” photo on a stock photo site that I can purchase for use means this photo isn't real. If it is by chance real, it is very old and meaningless.
There is no doubt that the Siberian tiger is endangered. That is why Russia has anti-poaching initiatives. It's not perfect but they are working on it and they are getting better at tiger protection each year. Posing with a poached tiger pelt and putting it on the internet is just asking to be arrested. Seriously, does anyone really think Russians wouldn't do something about that, especially with the SIBERIAN tiger? It's kind of in the name.
This mine closed in 2004. It is massive. The mine is 1200 meters across and 525 meters deep. Helicopters are not permitted to fly over the mine due to wild air currents. That is crazy but they are Russians. During its peak years, (it opened in 1957) the mine produced 10 million carats, 20% of which were gem quality annually. The working conditions here were brutal. They had to mine through permafrost in the winter and work through muddy sludge in the summer. Fun stuff.
Alrosa owns the mine now. They are ISO compliant and do have an environmental impact program in place. How effective it is, I don't know. I can find very little about it.
So, that photo looks like a set up. There is more garbage than there is bird. I went and looked for evidence of birds eating THAT much garbage and I can't find anything conclusive. There is no doubt this happens but the photos I find are similar to this. They look set up. That garbage looks like it was placed into it's body cavity - not it's stomach.
What these photos purport is, birds eat more inorganic matter than food. I cannot confirm that birds eat THAT MUCH plastic and inorganic matter or at least appear to though I wouldn’t think so. I can find lots of people talking about it but nothing conclusive, anywhere. I (really don't) love finding lots of gross decaying bird pictures.
There's really only one thing to say here. The New Delhi megacity is another case of urbanization.
Maldives is a little island nation about 600 km southwest of India. It's got a land area of 298 square km. It's tiny. It is however made up of over 1100 different islands spread over 90,000 square km. It's a double chain coral atoll which is made of awesome. Maldives has the status of having the lowest natural high point in the world at 2.4 meters above sea level. Basically, if someone sneezes, I think the islands flood.
Maldives has history that goes back to 2000 BC. It was part of a trade route.
Nowadays it's a tourist destination.
Sea levels have been rising at about 3mm/yr. In 2010, however, sea levels fell for an 18 month period. In other words, people try to sound conclusive about what’s going on with the world’s weather but it's a lot of guess work and political agenda. Ice shelves freeze and melt and sea levels change but they don’t actually know what's why at this point.
I'm not sure why this is here, because science? Black Friday is a PROCESS and PEOPLE problem. The process problem is this; Black Friday is a one day event in which a lot of high demand items are on deep discount. If the Black Friday event were, say, a week long, a lot of the problems that come from this one day event would be avoided.
The people problem is... people are crazy. I personally avoid the Black Friday event like everyone has Spanish Flu, smallpox AND Ebola combined. I barricade myself in my home and I *may* look out my windows just to make sure the world still exists.
This one I knew about. For years, China has accepted electronic waste from around the world and put it all in one location. Industrial disease is rampant in what's been deemed “ the electronic graveyard.” It's actually a scientific case study of what happens when tonnes of a specified type of waste that we've never had to deal with before is localized. It is brutal and it's how people here make a living.
China has technically banned the importation of electronic waste. The electronic graveyard still receives 1.5 million tonnes per year or 100 truckloads per day. Most, if not all people in this are sick in some fashion. Lead poisoning is the highest on the list of problems, respiratory diseases are incredibly common and these are only two of the many health issues in the area.
What's sad is, this isn't the only electronic graveyard. It's the world's largest electronic graveyard.
Get a job in recycling! I dare you.
I loathe the term “virgin forest.” That term is simply used to ensure an emotional response. Next, if that is a clear cut, good. A clear cut forest will grow back far better than selective cutting. If a forest is logged through selective cutting, sunlight and water will not reach the forest floor. New growth would be impossible. With a clear cut, when new trees are planted, the entire forest floor has access to sunlight and rainwater, there aren't big trees to suck up all the water or hide the floor from sun. New trees have a chance to live. (I learned this stuff from a friend of mine. You’d probably like her.)
For an industry dependent on renewable resources to thrive, they want said resource to renew. If the industry wants to thrive faster, said industry will HELP the renewable resource renew. For the logging industry, that means replanting a forest in the most efficient way possible.
Logging may be contentious, but as long as people want paper and houses and stuff, logging will happen.
Okay, so there is a waste facility specific to tires. I'm not seeing what the problem is. From here, they can either be disposed of properly (buried I believe) OR recycled into something else. As long as people have a need for tires, there is need for licensed disposal facilities.
If a fire broke out here, it's localized, away from cities AND firefighters will know exactly what to expect. That way, they will be prepared and they'll know what chemicals are required to put out this kind of fire. That's one of the points of a licensed facility.
So, it doesn't take much research to find out the decommissioning of Fukushima Daiichi is going well. They've completed fuel removal from unit 4 and they're currently cleaning up the site, dealing with contaminated water, replacing tanks and doing what needs to be done to fully decommission the plant. Oh, right, there is no fire. That was put out years ago.
IAEA Sees Continued Progress at Fukushima Daiichi
The Situation At Fukushima
Based on past and current research, polar bears are doing well. There is a consensus with ACTUAL polar bear experts - NOT environmentalists with a political agenda - that the polar bear population is increasing and has been since the 1970's. There is currently a confirmed polar bear population of 20,000 - 25,000 bears. They think there are more like 40,000 bears. There also isn't just one type of polar bear. There are 19 subpopulations. Canada has 13 of them.
Oh, and some of these polar bear experts that watch, study and write numerous expert peer reviewed papers about polar bears and their increasing populations don't get invited to the cool kids tables. They just get told how wrong they are by armchair experts. They also get told how global warming is obviously killing the population off, just because it is (even though it's not.)
“Ruthless exploitation of man?” The Alberta oil sands were already picked on, now it's California oil fields. So, let me challenge oil extraction from another direction.
What is oil used in?
I looked up said waterfall. These ice flow waterfalls are analogous to fertilizing the ocean. The poles get summer like anywhere else. It gets warmer, the sun beats down on the surface of the ice, the ice melts and WATER! The water has to go somewhere and it FALLS off the ice. Then winter comes, it snows, the water freezes and the ice flow gets bigger. Then summer happens again. This sounds sort of, hmmm, what's the word... right, seasonal!
Okay, I've been doing this for too long. I can't hide the sarcasm anymore.
That's steam from cooling towers.
Did a storm happen the night before they went out? I lived on a coast. The coast line always looks like hell after a storm. If there was that much floating garbage, why would he go into the water? I'd be afraid of catching something because water accidentally got in my mouth, or eyes, or on my skin.
I have found research that shows Indonesia (the 4th most populous nation) produces a heroic amount of waste. In 2010 they produced 3.22 million metric tonnes of plastic waste, 1.29 million metric tonnes of which ended up in the ocean. Seriously? That's just plastic, I don't want to consider the amount of ew they're spilling into the ocean.
So, I have to ask again, seeing what's in that photo, WHY WOULD THE SURFER BE IN THAT WATER? Remember the industrial disease I spoke of earlier? He probably has it now.
"When the last tree has been cut down, the last river poisoned and the last fish caught, then the man will find that money can not be eaten."
Quote Investigator - Last Tree Cut
This is what the site's author says after the last picture. That quote was first heard in 1972. It's in a collection of essays titled “Who is the Chairman of This Meeting?” and it was said by Alanis Obomsawin. Another version of that quote was used, again in 1972, by another Native American, Thomas Parker, at Harvard during his presentation.
It's not so old and it's part of a cautionary report of short-term thinking and monetary motivations.
I see what the site author was trying to say but there was no context for the quote used. As long as the author and anyone else wants a certain quality of life, oil excavation will happen, power plants will be built, megacities will develop. Random pictures and mis-used quotes will not change minds. Nor will slacktivist resharings and the power of the "Like" button.
I might have been more convinced of the message behind the page if it didn't come to me via Facebook.
The economy and minimum wage is a hot topic and always has been. Capitalism is an evil word. Income equality seems to be the term of the year and affirmative action makes you one of the cool kids. Everyone wants a bailout but no one wants to be seen near a bank. Wall Street is stealing all your money and won’t somebody please think about the children!
I’d like to start with this insane idea of mandating minimum wage (you know, since Alberta just raised ours by a quarter). My husband owns a business so this one does hit close to home. Before anyone says anything, we don’t pay anywhere near minimum wage. His employees (which I am in fact one of) are paid well above it. I’d love to say “I’m the highest paid person in the company” but I’m nowhere near and I’m still paid well. I contribute, I get paid, that’s all there is to it.
There are a lot of people, including the government, both Canadian and American, that believe mandating minimum wage will solve a slew of problems. What kind of problems do they believe this mandate will solve considering a WAGE you accept for a job is the value you place for your labour. If the job you are trying to get requires MINIMUM education, MINIMUM experience and MINIMUM skill, odds are it is valued at MINIMUM wage.
Well, one argument I’ve seen is the increase in minimum wage would increase the pay of low paying jobs? Well, wait, why are they low paying jobs in the first place? Who takes low paying jobs? As I see it, low paying jobs are jobs that generally require little to no education or experience so that means little pay. Okay, if you need more money, do what you have to, take the job but try and better yourself to do something like, I don’t know, get a better job. Wouldn’t that be a better solution than increasing minimum wage?
Another argument that I’ve seen is raising minimum wage is the redistribution of wealth. How does that work? Is that like “trickle down” economy or something? Is money suppose to flow down from the top? The rich lose, the poor win? I somehow don’t think so. In the short term, it has been shown that the effects of raising minimum wage aren’t great but in the long term, the cost of goods sold does increase. If I am a small business owner and I have to increase what I’m paying my employees, but I’m already running it pretty close to the line, does that not mean I have to increase the cost of what I’m selling so that I can still pay my employees? It could be that or I fire someone so that I can still have some staff. Either way, my business would still suffer.
In general, most companies pay better than minimum wage. So why is this even an issue? From what I’ve seen, it’s because there are people out there that believe that low income workers are entitled to a “living wage.” Okay, so what is a living wage? I’ve found a couple of different yet similar definitions.
1. A living wage is a wage that is high enough to maintain a normal standard of living.
2. A living Wage is the amount of income an individual or family needs to meet basic needs, maintain a safe decent standard of living in their community, and save for future needs and goals.
So, I have questions. Do these definitions purport that a minimum wage is suppose to supply a living wage or is an individual or family suppose to make enough to meet these definitions.
Next, the first definition is fairly straight forward. The second definition however is a little more complex.
Both definitions for living wage are complicated but the second is somewhat outrageous. What I'd like to start picking on is “maintain a safe decent standard of living in their community.” That can be argued to mean so many things. What if I live in a high crime neighbourhood and have children? By mandating minimum wage and defining living wage, can I not make this the government's problem by saying I need to move to a low crime neighbourhood that's safer for myself and my children? By doing so, I now need my rent subsidized. The grocery store is more expensive in my new neighbourhood, so I need a percent of my groceries subsidized. Oh, being that I've moved to a bigger house in a better neighbourhood, my utilities are more expensive, guess I need more government money AND the list goes on. Thanks for the living wage and mandated minimum wage big government, I appreciate it.
As for saving for my future needs and goals, I want to be an astronaut! Or maybe a race car driver, or a UN interpreter. I don’t know yet, so let’s reach for the moon!
I hope you’re seeing a problem because I am. Once you start adding to the definition, or even have a definition for which the government is responsible, a problem exists. There is so much to consider. How much of a person’s life does the government take care of? When does the individual take responsibility for themselves?
See, I remember a time when a person would take on 2 jobs to make sure they could put food on the table and pay rent. They were happy to have a roof over their head and that their family had a bed to sleep in. Now, taxpayer funded programs and government subsidies are a way of life. People actually expect others to take care of them instead of them taking care of themselves. Hard work is a thing of the past for so many and “this job is beneath me” comes out of their mouth as they cash their entitlement cheque.
Minimum wage is not the problem, capitalism is not the problem, income inequality is not the problem. A shift in ideals and who should take care of what is the problem. There are too many government mandates and taxpayer funded programs now. The government is not the solution to all problems. If you don’t like the wage you are getting paid, then think about the university courses you choose to take. Maybe Classic Mythology and Gender Studies are not where your time and money should be spent. An apprenticeship in a trade program or a bachelor in business just might get you away from that income inequality I hear so much about. You’ll have to donate money to your causes instead of protesting them. You’ll be too busy working, like the rest of us, and realize taxes suck and the tax breaks we have are in fact okay.
Instead of increasing minimum wage for minimum skilled jobs, how about teach people increasing their skill will increase their pay. Wouldn’t that be a better solution?
“So you think that money is the root of all evil?” said Francisco d’Anconia. “Have you ever asked what is the root of money?”
Rand, Ayn. Atlas shrugged. 35th anniversary ed. New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Signet,
Wow, it’s been a long while since I’ve written. I’ve been shockingly busy and distracted. My husband has spun up his business hardcore. That has taken up more of my time than I expected, which is good. My nephew also distracted me, which is fun. But enough distractions! Back to business… or writing as the case may be.
So many people state that capitalism is evil and corporations are soulless because they are run by greedy people and that money is the root of all evil. I disagree for so many reasons but I came to a another conclusion as to why it’s not evil. This happened in a very weird yet surprisingly appropriate forum. It was in Grand Theft Auto 5 online. I got into a very interesting discussion with a 24 year old man in a philosophical dilemma and he said to me “money corrupts.” I immediately disagreed with him.
I’ll start by saying GTA 5 is my first foray into the GTA world. I watched my husband play the other games and thought them rather silly. I do, however, enjoy the online game. I’ve met a number of people I enjoy speaking to (while running around the online world wreaking digital havoc.) Rockstar has a fantastic capitalist venture going with these games, but I digress, sort of.
The person I was talking to is often referred to as “the puppy” because he’s so much younger than us, but he sure has a head on his shoulders. My first experience with him was only about a month ago. We were simply playing the game and I all of a sudden heard a one sided “debate” he was having with someone in open forum and I needed to jump in. The puppy was holding his own as the person he was “debating” had no concept of reality, and having back up is always nice. Either way, I decided I liked him as he was intelligent and consistent even when the other person was combative, and at times verbally threatening. That’s hard to find in 20-somethings nowadays.
Now, I specifically bring him up because in talking with him, I ended up thinking about an old topic in a slightly different way.
If money corrupts, or is the root of all evil, then by it’s very nature, it corrupts everything whether you are rich, poor, or somewhere in between.
When does money corrupt a person? How much money must a person have before they are considered corrupted? So many pick on “the rich” as being the bane of all existence, that’s why I ask this question. My husband and I are simply comfortable in Calgary but feel downright rich in some places in the United States. Here in Canada, I expect to have hot water for every shower yet in parts of the world, clean water is impossible to come by. Rich is a matter of perspective, so when is a person rich, and then, when is a person corrupted by money? Who determines this? Is there a secret group out there somewhere that I’ve never heard of that sends out a monthly list? If so, I’d like to get on their mailer.
If money corrupts, or is the root of all evil, how does one maintain health? Are they not contributing to that evil by making money and then by spending it on groceries? It cannot be a healthy lifestyle if it begins through the use of the root of all evil. One cannot help the poor by giving the root of all evil as donations. Why would churches accept the root of all evil into their coffers?
Or is it that morality and ethics cannot be purchased, and money is simply the easiest mechanism to blame? Why blame the person for their actions? Blame something else, like money. The responsibility for morality, ethics and virtue can’t be my responsibility, can it?
“The Devil made me do it, I had no will of my own!”
People who say that money is the root of all evil get that quote wrong anyway. The Biblical quote that is so often corrupted is:
1 Timothy 6:10 (King James Version)
For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
That is a different idea. In my opinion, money for the sake of money makes it valueless. The value of money is in what it can purchase, and it can’t purchase morals, ethics or virtue. That is the responsibility of the individual. An individual can be moral or immoral, ethical or unethical, whether they are rich or poor.
Money is a tool. It is the means to get from point A to point B. For some it is easier than others. Some have more than others, but it is not the evil that so many make it out to be. The poor wish to control the rich because the rich have money. They see them as greedy, but wish to take that money for themselves. So who is more corrupt - those who have money, or those who don’t and wish to take it through force and not earn it honestly?
What happened to “an honest days work for an honest days pay?” How did that become “I’m entitled to your wealth?”
Capitalists, those who produce, those with money, do not take anything by force but create wealth. They increase their wealth and the wealth of others, through moral, ethical actions. They do not make demands nor expect anyone else to do the work for them. Capitalists and the rich wish a free market and wish to be controlled by a free market. Those with very little (money, ambition, ethics, etc…) wish to have capitalists and the rich controlled, regulated, to have their hard earned money, their production of “evil” taxed away.
So, who is more corrupt? Those who create wealth, or those to uninspired to do more than create a system of entitlement and taxation? It’s easier to believe that money is evil and the cause of corruption than to go out make it, I suppose, but that does lead to problems. It leads to unearned resentment towards producers, and it leads to people who want an honest week’s pay for an honest day’s work. It leads to taxpayer funded programs being called “entitlement programs” and the expectation that my $2 earned becomes their $2 legally pick pocketed.
Perhaps it is not money, but the lack of money and ambition that corrupts.
In Canada and America, there are people, actual people who live free, who wish to institute communism.
In Ukraine, there are people dying for freedom, literally dying for it. To be more specific, they are being killed for wanting it. They’ve turned on their government.
In Canada and America, there are people that want us to give up our freedoms, willingly, give up our freedoms.
In Ukraine, people are fighting a corrupt government for freedom. They’re tired and they’ve had enough.
In Canada and America, there are people that believe we are not smart enough to live free, think for ourselves and be responsible for ourselves.
Ukraine is burning to the ground because they’ve not been permitted to think for themselves and they want to. The people are speaking loud and clear.
In Canada and America, the government, the police are taking our liberties one freedom at a time, one day at a time.
In Ukraine, they are being beaten, thousands at a time.
We are heading the way of Ukraine. It’s happening, slowly at first but faster as time goes on. Watch the video and pass it on and realize that when you ask for socialism or communism that in the end, this is what you are asking for because people, by their very nature, want to be free.
Last week, I was driving through the United States so I didn’t have much to do but listen to the radio. The car I was driving didn’t even have satellite! It was torturous! Talk radio did save my life. I noticed a theme going on though. Chris Christie, Andrew Cuomo, health care, gay rights, and abortion. Today, I wish to say something about abortion (as I really don't know much about the first two, I've got plenty to say on healthcare but not right now and I've already touched on gay rights.)
It's my body, I have the right to do with it what I want with it.
A woman shouldn't be permitted to drink a large soda. A woman shouldn't have fatty foods. A woman shouldn't protect herself with a gun. A woman shouldn't eat GMO produced foods.
It's my body, I have the right to do what I want with it.
In an effort to promote the right to abort, “pro-choicers” say this frequently. I have to ask, what of the child? Does she have the right to make the decision to terminate the life of the child? Based on that quote, no. But then the child, at conception, cannot make a choice, so the choice is made for them. Is this really a fair argument when one side cannot defend themselves?
What about the father? What if he wants the child, to raise it himself? He has no rights in this whatsoever but if she chooses to have the child, he must take care of it. I agree with this as he helped bring the child into this world but he has no right to decide if the child even lives. This argument does not take him and his rights into account at all. He does not choose her right to abort, he does not choose her right NOT to abort. Since this right exists, it should be mutual, not one sided.
Rights versus Responsibilities
So, a woman has the right to do with her body what she wishes? What about the responsibility to prevent the unwanted pregnancy in the first place? Why is that not addressed? It is to some degree but by no means is it brought up enough to make a difference.
I've gone to a number of “pro-choice” websites and they say they promote birth control, contraception, and sex education as well as abortion but if you're anti-abortion, they put forth the idea that you are the anti-Christ. It's almost sacrilegious to say “maybe abortion shouldn't be on the table. Let's consider something else first, second and maybe even third.” You get called anti-choice for giving other choices! It's weird and ludicrous!
For the record, it is not only the woman's responsibility to prevent unwanted pregnancy, it is the responsibility of the couple to prevent it. That's why we invented condoms as well as other forms of birth control. It just shocks me that so many people say “condoms are gross.” They aren't, and when used properly, they work as advertised and also aid in the prevention of STD's. Read the instructions, that's what they're for.
* The King of Bob takes no responsibility for any condom company or their claims. She simply knows that when she's made her partner use condoms, they've worked as advertised. *
I've found two sets of statistics. They both agree that there have been 55 million abortions since it has been legalized. That is a crazy number. I would never, ever have guessed it at being that high.
There are 30 abortions for every 1000 women of reproductive age. The number seems to be dropping which is a good thing. The page does say “Contraceptive use is a key predictor of a women's recourse to abortion.” Many of these women report difficulty in using contraceptives consistently though. So, education is still so important. Why is it so difficult to use contraception consistently? That would be an important question to ask I think.
The second set of statistics say something to the effect of almost 1 in 3 American women by the age of 45 have had or will have an abortion so I don't give these statistics much credibility.
Rallies and protests FOR abortion do not make any sense to me at all. When a government of any sort attempts to change an abortion law, the rallies for abortion start. It doesn't seem to matter what the law is for. It seems if the law is even meant to protect women in some fashion, “pro-choice” advocates feel it's putting us back in the dark ages. I'm not sure what that means but that's what they say.
To see these pro-choice rallies, the abortion advocates make it seem like abortion is the best choice ever! It's the cool choice and as easy as choosing shoes! Simply put, if I see this message, so do others. Abortion shouldn't be an easy choice nor should it be the first one. Consider this, advertising cigarettes is illegal and there are people out there that want advertising candy made illegal because children will want it. Oh! AND in Chicago, putting up 4x6 inch NO GUN signs in schools have got people “ALARMED!” They think that means guns used to be allowed! To me - and I’m a smart person - that means the abortion movement should show some responsibility with how they come across to the general public. Maybe the message needs to be tweaked. It shouldn't seem like it's as easy as choosing a new pair of jeans.
In my pre-marriage days, I was taken on a nice date. We had to walk through a rally, protest, thing on the way to a restaurant. The group was made up of a bunch of angry feminists. They were chanting “my eggs are my own!” The signs that were held high and proud said similar such things. I never understood what they meant. I had this image of these woman holding cartons of eggs high above their heads while yelling their little mantra. Other silly images ensued about breakfast but I won't get into that. I know they were talking about this “reproductive rights” idea but even that doesn't make any sense to me. Women have had rights for at least 5 or 6 years now. Maybe it's been a little longer, I should go and check.
* The King of Bob endorses all forms of sarcasm and can herself become very sarcastic at times.
Accept it for she will not change*
What struck me is the Famous Five are from Calgary. They're the chicks that fought for Canadian women to be deemed persons under the law. They got us voting rights and stuff. To see rallies like this in Calgary is a little, well, weird. The Famous Five made historic changes that matter on the grand scheme of things. Angry feminists aren't doing much of anything except for coming across as rather silly.
In Texas, abortion restrictions came into effect on January 1st of this year.
Apparently, these restrictions were absolutely outrageous. “Pro-choice” advocates wished to prevent these changes at any cost and actually chanted “Hail Satan” at pro-life advocates. So there is to be no choice even when voted in and being despicable to a group with a differing view is considered acceptable. How are either of these okay?
In Alabama, they've decided to change the law as well. I learned that on the website “Chicks on the Right.” The ACLU had to jump on that like a cat on a new toy! Here, read it for yourselves:
Example #794,372,439 Of The Kind Of Desperate Tactics Pro-Abortionists Will Use To Push Their Agenda.
Now, what bugs me are the immediate lies that the ACLU put forward! Every woman in Alabama would be at risk if what the ACLU said were true!
“Oh, Madam, I can plainly see you're in the middle of something very traumatic, it COULD be a miscarriage, it could be something else. I don't know because I haven't even looked at you. I'm not even going to attempt to diagnose you and potentially save you and your baby because I don't have to since you're pregnant and I'm not liable for anything. Go die in the parking lot.”
* The King of Bob has decided to try hyperbole.
Maybe it's better if she stays away from that in the future. *
It's absolutely unfathomable to me that anyone would put forth that idea! My God!! Anyone with any sort of a brain should be able to see straight through what the ACLU is saying, or I hope so! Any doctor, nurse, or a person with feelings would help a woman in distress so why even try with the lies! Oh, right, because people will believe them, that's why. It's sad really.
So when does morality enter the conversation? Is it moral to use abortion as a form of birth control? I don't believe it is, especially with how often it's used by so many. Is it moral to disrespect ones' own body as people seem to now? No, I don't think so and yes, I believe if people are unwantingly getting pregnant often enough that abortion is this acceptable, they are disrespecting themselves. People feel eating the wrong foods is disrespecting their bodies, so how is having unprotected sex, using contraceptives incorrectly, and using abortions as a form of birth control not also disrespecting their bodies? It doesn't make sense.
It's amazing to hear some of these “pro-choice” advocates speak. Some of them actually believe that a baby is nothing more than a parasite invading their bodies. That “parasite” apparently has no right to invade their bodies. THAT explains the ovaries and uterus and stuff we women are born with... to house said “parasites.” I thought it was called biology. I do have to question the kind of mind that comes up with the idea that a baby is a parasite. That has to be some kind of mental disorder though I could be wrong.
I’m not anti-abortion in all circumstances but I’m not going to get into that right now. To speak against abortion is to be called “anti-choice.” I read there's a “war against women” going on and we should fight for “reproductive rights.” I am a woman and still, none of this make sense to me. I've not experienced any of these issues myself. I've not been involved in any war on me because I'm a woman and no one has forced me to either have a child or NOT have a child. Oh, and no one has forcibly removed any of my eggs, well, that I know of. I have had a weird dream or two, so maybe.
*insert eerie music here*
I'm very much about choice, just not when it comes to the total disrespect of oneself and human life. A puppy's life is more important than a baby's life and that's sad. I love animals, don't get me wrong but when, on the grand scheme of things did an animals' life become more important than a human life?
It’s all about rights. My rights, your rights, the right to choose. It’s so easy when you believe the thing growing inside of you isn’t a little human being. Pro-choice advocates are adamant their individual rights not be violated but they are quite willing to violate the rights of the unborn baby because it’s not “alive” or human. Since when did we have a sliding scale of humanity? I guess it happened and someone forgot to tell me.
My husband, my nephew and I are sitting here today watching Christmas movies and my husband just can't shut off. He's a consultant and came up with this tidbit on The Nightmare Before Christmas. Enjoy.
WHAT I LEARNED FROM THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS
On Christmas Day, my wife and are sitting watching the Nightmare Before Christmas, and I noticed something interesting about it. The perception of the movie is, in case you haven’t seen it, that the characters from Halloween Town, thinking they can do better than Santa Claus, take over the implementation of Christmas. But here’s what I see: an extremely industrious group of people coming against a major barrier to entry in a new market.
Think about it. Jack Skellington manages to pull off one of the most major macroeconomic reengineering programs in history. In just 55 days, he does the research and development on Christmas, coordinates the project, retools the production facilities and produces enough product for the entire world. Among the challenges he faces are:
So long as people only watch this as a kid’s movie about Halloween, they’ll miss the finer points inherent in this movie that show the benefits of hard work. But like Hank Reardon, Jack Skellington faces a neverending series of insurmountable hurdles at the end of his quest, merely because people don’t like change. For a society that embraces progress, why put such high praise on such a sad movie?
It was only a matter of time and I am surprised it's taken so long. It's finally happened, the line is crossed. Someone has done it. Naheed Nenshi, our “beloved” lord and mayor is being sued.
If you've been watching local news at all, you know that this started well back in April, with the infamous “secret video.” The actual lawsuit however was filed on November 13, 2013. It's taken me a couple of weeks to get my thoughts ordered but I really wanted to see what Mayor Nenshi was going to do and say. Well, I have to say, so far, he's held up to my expectations. No, that's not a good thing.
Mayor Nenshi has been served by prominent Calgary businessman, Cal Wenzel. You may have heard of him. The charge is defamation. That shouldn't be a surprise to anyone who’s been paying attention considering the barrage of unfounded accusations and attacks from Mayor Nenshi since the video had been leaked. Mr. Wenzel was trying to play nice and did ask for a simple apology but that never happened. It probably doesn’t help matters that Mayor Nenshi used the home builders as his springboard into his second term as mayor. Why did he bother? He was all but guaranteed to have it! He didn't even have to campaign, he just had to show up! This is me saying this! If you know anything about me, you know that I don't like Nenshi, I don't agree with him 98% of the time, and I didn't vote for him! So I don’t understand why he had to create this false arch nemesis?
Here are the specifics over which he’s being sued:
The statement goes into far greater detail of course, but that’s it right there. It’s really very straight forward.
So far, Mayor Nenshi is “disappointed” by this action. I mean, someone is openly speaking against him! Heavens to Murgatroyd, whatever shall he do? Well, my first thought is, don't make unfounded accusations against someone and ya wouldn’t get sued, but that’s just my opinion.
Mayor Nenshi was on a radio show in which he said so much in a very short time. He stands behind his words and refuses to apologize for them. Mind you, I don't believe in the forced apology anyway. He also used the “secret” video to raise himself above the home builders during his campaign. “Look at how evil they are. I’m awesome for showing you their maleficence!” Okay, maybe he didn't use those words but that was the sentiment. If nothing else, I hope he's shown some humility in the next few months.
Transcript from the October 9th Interview on CBC’s the Eyeopener:
If it were me on the receiving end of this interview, I’d be rather upset by these unfounded allegations but Mayor Nenshi doesn’t see it that way. He calls it “freedom of speech.” I could almost believe him if so much of this interview didn't come across as statements of fact.
“Defamation covers any communication that tends to lower the esteem of the subject in the minds of ordinary members of the public.”
I copied this definition from wikipedia. This is fairly general, but you get the idea.
So far, I’m finding this humourous. Mayor Nenshi has never taken criticism well so I can only imagine how he's feeling about this. The next few months will be interesting to say the least, though I could be wrong. Maybe he’ll take it like a man and deal with the situation with dignity, integrity and virtue. Maybe he’ll deal with it like a 12 year old and feel from the first minute to the last, no matter how this lawsuit turns out, he’s entitled to say whatever he likes about whomever he wants with absolutely no repercussions. We can only wait and see.
In my previous article Calgary Votes 2013, I put forth a couple of questions about Nenshi versus the home builders:
- Why are the home builders evil in the eyes of Mayor Nenshi and some of the candidates?
- What did the home builders actually do wrong?
To date, neither of these questions have been answered. They’re just not the good guys in this tale or it’s a tale of Nenshi the Giant Killer. The issue I see is, these particular “giants” are kind of required to keep things going in our fair city. Homes need to be built, hence we have home builders.
Ah yes, I forgot about the Manning Centre. Mayor Nenshi thought the CRA should investigate the Manning Centre over the “the legality of what’s happening.” Mr. Wenzel put forward that he, plus 10 others, each donate $100,000 to the Centre. What’s illegal about that? Well, if you do your research, nothing.
It’s perfectly legal for the Manning Centre to accept those donations. They are a conservative non-profit centre (NOT a charitable organization) and they train potential candidates, but I’ve mentioned all this before. Preston Manning was attacked for no good reason and defended himself well. Is anyone safe from attack? Well yes, but you have to be on the side of right, or left, or… you know what I mean.
The “secret” meeting has been mentioned numerous times but what was so “secret” about it? The rest of us weren’t invited? Is that what made it secret? I’m not a home builder or anything, but I feel so left out now. Don’t they know who I am! I’m some chick in south Calgary who has a hard time keeping quiet! That’s who! But that’s no reason to let me know about a meeting that had nothing to do with me. It just would have been less secret.
Here’s the duality of it. Candidates, councillors, and the mayor have meetings all the time that we don’t know about and they’re not called “secret”. If we find out about them after the fact, they’re still not called “secret”. If I’d been given no other information, I’d have assumed Mr. Wenzel was one of the candidates - but since he’s just a businessman, this meeting is somehow illicit.
Mayor Nenshi says this lawsuit could make it difficult for council members to do their jobs and could discourage people from running for public office. I see where he's going with it but I disagree with him. What exactly is stopping council from doing their job? Don't make unfounded allegations against people in the everyday goings on of city hall and the job will get done without the threat of court action. They seemed to have succeeded thus far. What makes today different than yesterday? If Mayor Nenshi is found guilty, I'd run for public office if I'd ever had any impetuous too. I however can't speak for others.
Something like this has happened before. In 1969, a Calgary mayor by the name of Rod Sykes was sued by a developer for “misleading council.” I’m not sure of the exact situation as I’m actually having a bit of a time finding any details. He still ran in the municipal election and won. Guess what, council wasn’t hindered and the job was done as expected. OH, and, this is important, Rod Sykes paid for his own defense. Mayor Nenshi wants us to pay for his mistakes. That is very wrong. He’s the one that said these things, he’s being accused of defamation, and innocent or guilty, MISTER Nenshi should pay for his own legal bills. It’s really that simple.
During the municipal election, I really did find it distasteful when Mayor Nenshi put forth the idea that if the home builders supported a candidate, we as Calgarians knew who not to support. Mayor Nenshi also fielded his own list of candidates that we should support, because, you know, they were his best buds. How is that not disparaging towards not only Cal Wenzel and Shane Homes, but the home builders as a whole? And why was Mayor Nenshi fielding candidates? Isn’t that hypocritical?
How nice he has a position in which he does not have to take care of himself, our lord and Mayor. That he can say things, make accusations, be taken to court. That our Mayor is so infallible that it is we, the citizens of Calgary who are ultimately punished. That he can stand on our backs; the mechanics, receptionists, electricians, accountants, cashiers, CEO’s, the private sector who will pay his legal fees in the form of taxes, for how beautiful are the Emperor’s new clothes.
It was a nice Saturday afternoon, that is, before I decided to read Maclean's Magazine. My husband has a subscription. I think I'm going to ask him to cancel it as it WAS a nice Saturday afternoon. There's an article in there that just got to me. Yes, I know. That's been happening a lot lately. I think I should turn the Internet off too.
~Disclaimer: Island of Bob Edition~
I believe in personal responsibility, rights and freedoms. I defend the law abiding and lawfulness of people AND government. If someone is charged AND convicted, in general that's their problem. It's that whole “do the crime, do the time” thing. It's also that whole “innocent until proven guilty” thing.
If I believe a law requires changing, I learn how to change it and try. I've also learned that takes A LONG FREAKIN' TIME and a little patience.
Now, I'm not a lawyer and what I say is my opinion and based on my own interpretations (unless I actually copy and paste it from somebody else.) Based on what I, myself have interpreted so far, the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club are probably right. Now here’s why I think this.
~End Disclaimer: Island of Bob Edition
Thank you, Boss of Bob~
The Hells Angels have become Constitutional defenders. I mean seriously, how weird is that? In B.C. they've had several pieces of property seized under the Civil Forfeiture Act. I've just learned of this act and it's been on the books since 2005. This disturbs me.
What I know of the Hells Angels comes from media so I'm not going talk too much about the club specifically, but rather about their situation. Now, the club hasn’t been charged with anything and the police have tried. Members of the club have been charged AND convicted, but not the club. What’s happened to the Hells Angels is a symptom of our ever crumbling rights. Let’s be clear here. Individual members being convicted of crimes is not proof the club is itself criminal. That would mean if your co-worker is charged and convicted of theft, your entire company is obviously unlawful. You are a criminal by simple association. It wouldn’t matter where the theft happened.
Judge Mackenzie - the acquittal judge for one of men charged - said the man before her (a known member of the Hells Angels) is not guilty for possession of cocaine. Since he has been found not guilty of a crime, that lack of evidence of a crime cannot be used to declare the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club a criminal organization. I’m paraphrasing here. All I can say is law is weird and I'm mostly okay with that. As far as I'm concerned, he’s innocent until proven guilty; anything else is speculation or conjecture.
Let's just skip the B.C. Supreme Court's inability to prove the Hells Angels are a criminal organization and move right to their squished rights.
If the Civil Forfeiture Office truly believes that unlawful activities have taken place on these properties or by the owners of the properties, why not pursue charges under the criminal code of Canada? Oh right, because they tried this once and failed. To try again (and with a different set of charges) will take too much time and effort. It's much easier to punish someone without that pesky due process stuff in the way.
As seen on the B.C. Ministry of Justice website, B.C. is one of two provinces that pioneered civil forfeiture to deter unlawful activity by taking away the instruments and proceeds of crime. From what I understand, it was meant for criminal organizations and the like, but it’s being used against jaywalkers. (I’ll try to turn the sarcasm down but it’s really hard sometimes.)
Seven provinces have since instituted it which makes me so very unhappy. This act allows the province to seize any asset it BELIEVES to be linked with unlawful activity. It doesn't seem to matter how small. “We like your view. YOU LOSE YOUR HOUSE!”
Okay, so I made that last part up... I hope.
The Hells Angels Motorcycle Club aren't the only targets of the Civil Forfeiture Act. They’re just the latest in a long line and they happen to have deep pockets. From what I've found, most others settle because to fight this in court costs a minimum of $50,000. Most lose anyway since they’re fighting the very system that took their stuff in the first place. It's sad to have to roll over because the government uses tax dollars to it's advantage to screw over, well, taxpayers.
So it’s time to head back to the B.C. Ministry of Justice website for more information. I should have read the whole page the first time, not just skimmed it. My (was healthy an hour ago) heart can only take so much.
“These proceedings are not commenced in court, they are an administrative process.
Whether proceedings are initiated in court or administratively, they are not reliant on criminal charges or convictions arising from the alleged unlawful activity.”
I BEG YOUR FU~BEEEEEEEP~
I apologize for my rather abrupt outburst. I've now calmed down a tad. I have to wonder, when the creators of this act first said those words, did it sound stupid when it bounced off the walls and back to their ears, too? Maybe it's just me then. So, having not even left the first page on civil forfeiture, I see that due process has been chucked out the window, stomped on, run over, and thrown in the garbage. Then they burned it, put it in the cat litter box and tossed it in the landfill. Or is that just my impression? Perhaps I need to calm down a little more.
First order of business: the idea of civil versus criminal law are being intermingled, or at least that’s what I’m seeing. This is seeming more like the American judicial system. We’re not America, we’re Canada. Let’s stay distinct, please. “We can’t get him in criminal court so let’s sue the pants off him!” Only, it’s the Crown doing the suing. I decided to head over to the Department of Justice website and get some clarity on this issue. There it says that civil or private law is between individuals or companies, you know, private citizens. Criminal or public law involves prosecution by the Crown as these cases involve crimes against society as a whole. So then why is the Crown suing individuals? That’s all mixed up.
With something like civil forfeiture, the Crown lost the war so they decide to brawl. The burden of proof is on the individual to say “I’m innocent of any charge of the criminal code beyond a reasonable doubt” but having to go through civil court to do it. The fun part is the Crown is both the judge and the prosecutor.
Your honour, presenting The Crown versus Miss Swan. We tried to charge and convict Miss Swan with theft and possession and distribution of cocaine but she was found not guilty of all charges. Now The Crown is suing her for her house as it was purchased through unlawful means.
Justice Civil Crown:
By what unlawful means was it acquired?
Theft, possession and distribution of cocaine.
Justice Civil Crown:
Oh, okay. The Civil Forfeiture Office may have her house then.
May I speak! It is my house and life after all!
Justice Civil Crown:
* gavel *
I’m really hoping I’m being facetious but it does have this feel to it. So, British Columbia just wiped their nose with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. This seems to be happening more and more everyday, so why am I surprised by this one?
It seems that some have tried to get around the Charter by saying “Section 11 doesn't apply because we haven't charged him with anything. Let’s do this.” That section does start with “Any person charged with an offense...” Section 8, however states “Everyone has the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure.” The Supreme Court of Canada said civil forfeiture, to a point is okay and is putting a stop to some of it. I think it needs to stop all of it.
So what part of the Charter trumps what? The “evil Them” don't care. This act is to prevent unlawful activities don'tcha know. SO CHARGE THE PERSON UNDER THE CRIMINAL CODE OF CANADA! THAT'S WHAT IT'S FOR! Forgive me, I’m having a hard time keeping my temper in check today. So, let's play this out to it's (il)logical conclusion. Don't charge anyone as that causes too much paperwork. Everyone is then guilty of something, and why not? I'm sure we can find something they've done if we look hard enough. Then we wouldn't be bogged down with pesky things like a judicial system and the government would have so much more money because they could SEIZE ALL THE THINGS!
So, if person X has not been charged AND convicted, how does a provincial court, no, not even a provincial court... This is administrative. How does the Civil Forfeiture Office (CFO) justify forfeiture of personal property? This is random. I realize they don't think so or don’t care to think so, but it is.
Back to the Hells Angels. The province went after the Nanaimo club house in 2007 for forfeiture. A police investigation was done, as was a property search and these turned up nothing. There was no criminal prosecution. Now three properties have been targeted for “forfeiture” because “It’s alleged they have been used as instruments in the commission of crimes including drug production, assault and murder.” Nothing has been proven in any level of court. To me, it seems like the province is just irked that they didn't win the first time. They couldn't say the Hells Angels are a criminal organization so they're taking their toys away.
There are so many example of this law being (mis)used. I could start listing them but it would go on and on and on. If you go the B.C. Ministry of Justice website, in the Civil Forfeitures section, you can find properties subject to administrative forfeitures. Then go to various other sites and check out the actual circumstances of the forfeiture. Look up more than one though, make sure the stories don’t conflict. I’ve had a couple conflict. Even those get a little wonky.
The unlawful activity can be itty bitty, or horrendously huge! The CFO isn’t picky as long as they can take something. You don’t even need to go through that annoying process of, well, process. Why actually get charged and convicted with a crime? You and I both know “they” saw something happen on your property! You probably have drugs in your house or car, too! It’s very lazy and the province likes it that way.
What’s said on the Department of Justice website seems contrary to the CFO. On the very first page, it talks about legal rights and responsibilities. It talks about how much of our laws are based on common sense. Civil forfeiture is more like a stab in the back and a toss under the bus. I find it difficult to trust a system that permits this. When will they come for my stuff just because I’ve said something they disagree with? I feel that time is coming. Thank God I no longer live in British Columbia.
Also, on the Department of Justice website, in the section called “The Role of the Public,” it says “Each of us has a part in ensuring that the law works properly and justice is done.” Practice what you preach. Seizing property under the auspices of preventing unlawful activity but not following due process is not preventative - it's vindictive. People scream police state far to frequently and easily but this is one of the few times I agree with them.
I did find a forum where people are saying “sounds perfectly reasonable to me,” or “sounds good to me,” in regards to civil forfeiture. They know and don’t care that the people suffering through forfeiture are not always charged. The sentiment of “If you get caught, you pay. Seems fine to me” only works so long as those saying these things aren’t the ones affected by laws such as these. As seen so often, it will be these people crying in the streets about how unjust it is when they’re the ones targeted. We’ll be hearing “I’m innocent! Don’t they know it’s innocent until proven guilty” and all that other stuff. It makes me wonder, are these the same people that get really angry at me when I drive the speed limit on a deserted highway at 2 am, then pass me like I’m road paint?
Laws such as civil forfeiture, the firearms act and anything that allows warrantless searches need to change. The government needs to stop these laws before they achieve royal assent. They’re put into place to stop crime but what they’re really doing is punishing those of us who, in general, were never criminals to begin with. I say in general because there is much speculation about the Hells Angels. This is one of the few times I have to let my personal feelings go, ignore reputations and remember, innocent until proven guilty.
I get it. The “it” I get was explained to me in one sentence. I got into a debate with someone who is very anti-industry. This person is obviously left wing. The sentence that explained the left wing mentality to me was “ I don’t have to research to know what’s good for the land and what’s bad for the land!.”
This picture is what started the conversation. To this picture, I said “fracking is safe.” Then all hell broke loose.
Really, the subject matter doesn’t matter. What matters is that something so … so… out to lunch was said at all. “I don’t have to research…” was in response to me saying “ I don't favour something such as this on a whim. I do many hours of research from many different sources. I read the reports for and against.” Apparently the hours of work, research and knowledge any of us put into any topic is discredited by feelings and is wasted time because they just “know.” I was always under the impression education was a good thing. Guess I was wrong. I feel remarkably underwhelmed by this sentiment.
Experts put time and effort into becoming experts. Corporations must work to regulations and environmental policies. Someone, lots of someones went to a lot of effort, work, and research to figure out what those should be and why. Independent organizations do their own independent studies and put out their own papers to keep industry working properly and working in everyone’s best interest. This is hundreds of thousands of man hours and it’s wasted because I’ve been informed liberals just “know.” Personally, I appreciate and take great value in the work these people do to become experts in the first place. By no means do I take it for granted.
I wish I had that power to just “know”. I’ve joked in the past that I learn through osmosis. My husband is an accountant turned information systems administrator and economist. The economist part happened because he took an economics course (I took the same one) and he passed it! Yay! But he didn’t know why. So he took a course to understand the first course. Then he read 357 books, took more courses, read some more books and this carried on. Now he’s going to write a book and a thesis in an effort to understand. I say I learn through osmosis because I have so much theoretical knowledge in accounting, information systems, and economics simply because he talks at me! His business magazines also lay around the house and I (sadly) started reading them a few years ago - and I find them interesting.
Still, if I don’t understand something, I look it up, find resources to help me understand, or ask people who know about the subject matter. I don’t just “know.” I wish I did. It would make debating with a certain friend of mine a lot easier.
Look at her! She’s cute! She also keeps me on my toes. She doesn’t just “know”. Like me, when Mrs. “Look at me, I’m cute and innocent” starts debating, she researches and asks questions and stuff and it’s everything I can do to stay half an inch ahead of her! What she doesn’t know is I sometimes lag behind in our debates, something I just refuse to admit until we’re done. She can see it as it’ll take me a few minutes to answer her every now and then but I’ll never admit it! I might be considered a little stubborn you see. She uses facts and opinions against me darn it! That’s okay, that’s what I try to do to her too.
Dodge, Parry, Thrust! - I just don’t let her know when I’ve fallen off the log. I regroup and attack again!
I have to say, there are days she makes me feel like this!
I think it's going to be a nice conversation and SHE ATTACKS FROM ALL SIDES! AHHHH! You think it's cool to be Neo but.. it's not!
I’m sounding complain-y but she keeps me honest. AND mental martial arts is far more fun than talking to someone who says “ you work with the oil industries therefore they pay you big bucks to run interference? are you that industry washed?...I feel sorry for you somehow....” or “I ignore ‘facts’ that come from big industry! mistruths diluted with lies!”
First, I don’t work for oil industries though it wouldn’t matter to me if I did. I defend them if I do, I defend them if I don’t. Wait… why am I defending them for free? I digress. I simply live in Alberta. Second, the assumption that anyone will go to the effort of putting out such amazingly consistent lies over so many years is insanity. That means every company in the oil and gas industry would have to be on board. That’s thousands of companies in Alberta alone. The “lie” couldn’t deviate at all. That would be impossible. Each company would have to be consistent in pushing the same misinformation. That’s a lot of work. It’s easier to tell the truth. Ask the Obama administration. They tried to control the media as well as everything else and it still doesn’t work. The truth squeaks through!
So, what I understand is if a liberal/progressive/left-winger gets it in their mind that they are correct in their convictions, using facts isn’t going to convince them to change their views. The facts are “wrong” no matter what. What they feel is correct and what the left wing media tells them to feel is correct, end of story. Mainstream media, in my opinion, depends on people like him. Their narrative would fall apart if more people wanted actual facts, I suppose.
I would feel sad for those on the left side of the spectrum that feel as he does, but I don’t.
I am simply disappointed.
I was actively trying not to write anything about the Calgary municipal election, but after a couple of articles that I've read, I snapped and I have to.
I have to ask: how did the homebuilders become evil? I mean, I know how this all started, I've seen the video but why is this continuing after so many months? The homebuilders themselves have said nothing public for a couple of months. They’ve been nice, quiet neighbours, SO WHAT’S THE DEAL? Why is it everytime I pick up the paper, someone is saying something disparaging about them? Are any of the homebuilders running for a council position? Not that I’ve seen. So, why are they being so vehemently attacked?
In my opinion, the homebuilders are not inherently evil. They are businessmen. If you know me at all, you know I think businesspeople are generally okay people, but I don’t know these guys personally, so I am making an assumption. Others in this fine city however feel that the homebuilders are evil and push this idea onward. The video came out in, what, March? So it was a big deal in the spring but all has been quiet since then. The homebuilders do what they do, life seemed okay for awhile, then BAM! *political crosshairs*
So I ask again, why are they being targeted? Is it because they dared speak against his Purple Worship and have the funds to help others run their campaigns? That could be it. They're probably racist, too. * apparently I have sarcasm turned on today *
Alright, so I rewatched the nefarious video. From what I saw, Mr. Wenzel had notes on the various aldermen and candidates on a ward-by-ward basis and whether or not they were pro-industry or not. His concern was, this term is four years long, not three, so whomever is voted in should be business-minded. As he's speaking, he admits politics is not his game and he's never really had to pay attention before, but feels he does now. He tells the group how much they are allowed to donate to a candidate each year and encourages them to do so stipulating that, if they do not, they get what they deserve. (He touched on a point of legality. What a terrible person.) He also encourages them to donate money to the Manning Centre. He does bring up the whole “well how much is this going to cost me?” and says “well how much does not supporting candidates you believe in cost in the long run?” I'm paraphrasing.
Mr. Nenshi did say the Manning Centre needs to be investigated for accepting donations. Okay, why? Anyone can accept donations! I can accept donations. The Manning Centre is a non-profit corporation, not a charity. They don’t provide a donor with a charity tax receipt so they are playing above board. I would expect that from an organization named after Preston Manning.
Mr. Wenzel did the campaigning and fundraising for some candidates. If I were a candidate that received a donation from these guys, I'd thank him for making my job that much easier. Mr. Nenshi calls what happened in this video illegal and unethical, then uses this video to his advantage. He says “Look at this! Look at how horrible these people are! Quick, give me money to make sure they can't do this again! Vote for me!” He also hires an anti-oilsands lobby group to work for city hall (but that's a whole other issue.)
So what's the problem? Is this not what candidates do all the time? Why is it distasteful when businesses get together and plan an election strategy but not when campaign teams get together and try to win? If Cal Wenzel were an alderman and the homebuilders his campaign team, this video would never have been an issue. The meeting would have been considered “strategy.”
Because it was businesses, in this case homebuilders, it was called illegal and unethical and we’ve been told it’s not democracy. We also heard the Manning Centre needs to be investigated because they are accepting donations and shouldn’t be as they are a partisan political centre. Yes, they are. They are not a charity and don’t provide tax receipts. What the homebuilders did was express opinions and decide what they wish to do with their money. Mr. Wenzel even went so far as to say “you’re allowed to donate this much per year legally.” Wait, he provided some useful information. That’s horrible! And quite frankly, if Mr. Nenshi truly believed what was happening with the homebuilders or at the Manning Centre were illegal in anyway, why were the RCMP never called?
Some of the aldermen have jumped on this bandwagon as well, but it seems to be the aldermen that are buds with Mr. Nenshi. This is such a bad idea. The homebuilders and the city will have to work together once this election is over and if Mr. Nenshi and his Chosen Ones win, they’ll start on an antagonistic foot. How is this even remotely okay? The homebuilders have been made the “villain” and they'll not likely forget.
I’ve so far talked about past events. These aren’t even the events that irritated me. Well, they irritated me but they’re not what ticked me off. What actually tweaked me is what I read in the Calgary Sun yesterday. Apex Builders Group (a homebuilder) circulated a memo to its employees with regards to the election. In the memo, they put which candidates best suited the company’s interests by ward, that they're closing the office early on October 21st, and encouraged the employees to go and vote. They make no demands, the employees can still make whatever choice they wish (of course) and they're being asked to vote. Management was simply EXPRESSING THEIR OPINION. Now what annoyed me is this: Nenshi's demand on who the company supports.
I beg your pardon? It's none of his business. The memo was leaked and the Calgary Herald printed it. That's fine. Actually, it's not - because to me, they've done nothing wrong, but it's been printed and it can't be unseen. But, printed or not, Mr. Nenshi has no right to demand anything of the sort! He may as well have demanded to see who they’re going to vote for too!
Having now seen the leaked memo, Mr. Nenshi is glad to know which candidates are “development friendly.” He says it tells people who to avoid. Say what? So the entire election is based on this and this alone? There is only one platform topic in the Calgary municipal election? He’s decided to vilify some candidates because of someone’s opinion of them?
“Traitor child. I must despise you now.”
So often I see in papers and hear on the news how elections shouldn't be based on smear campaigns yet this is one of the biggest smear campaigns I've seen locally and for what reason? Because capitalists are tired of being taxed to death? Because capitalists are using their resources to their benefit?
This isn’t the first time I’ve seen something like this but it is the first time I’ve seen it so plainly. I lived in Tofino, B.C. for a time and my husband was the financial controller for a fish farm. We were there long enough for a municipal and provincial election. The municipal election wasn’t that big a deal but the provincial was. We had to work towards a candidate that wouldn’t work towards taking jobs away. The fish farm (which isn’t terrible at all) was responsible for about 8% of employment in the area.
When it was time for the provincial election, we had to consider which candidate would best serve our interests and not take away our jobs. Guess who received corporate and personal donations (and our vote.) If we felt a candidate would work with environmentalist whack-jobs in an attempt to shut down fish farms and logging, we didn’t want to give them money or support of any sort. That would be counter-productive. Why support someone trying to shut down the industry that puts food on our plates, our friends plates, their family’s plates? The difference is, fish farms and the logging industry weren’t vilified for it. They were vilified for other reasons.
Now, let’s head back to Calgary. I assume the homebuilders would feel the same way as fish farmers or loggers. If someone is working against them and their industry in some fashion, they would try to stop it. There’s nothing wrong with that. Be it in taxes, policies or industry changes, if they feel there are candidates that work in their best interests, why would they not get together and say “yes, these are the people that will work with us. Let’s help them win.”
Nenshi and his cronies have to stop vilifying homebuilders. It's not productive. It's a waste of time and if he and his “friends” win, this will do nothing to further partnerships in the future. You can't call someone on the carpet today and expect him to be your best friend tomorrow. New communities have to be built, old communities have to be maintained and that means they have to meet face to face at some point. In a negotiation, I would put my money on the guy that's been doing the job, taking bids and running a business for 30 years over a university teacher who fluked his way into the mayor's seat 3 years ago.
Today I go and take a quick look and what do I see? Apex Builders standing by their memo. What do they say? “The intention of our memo was simply to engage our employees and to encourage them to get out and vote for the candidates that best represent their personal interests and beliefs.” In other words “here’s our opinion, go form your own. Yay if they match, but if they don’t, they don’t. VOTING is what matters” All of the candidates should be happy with that. It should never have come down to “now you know who to avoid.”
The fact that Nenshi even believes someone needed to be vilified to further his own career is despicable. He chose someone, a group of someones that haven’t even publicly engaged him for a number of months. I could understand it if he attacked Jon Lord or another mayoral candidate but not a group that’s not even in the running. It’s low, it’s petty and to me, it shows his true moral values. I didn’t vote for him before, based on this, I’m sure not voting for him now but you can bet the farm on October 21st, I’m voting for someone.
I hope I’ve engaged you and I encourage you to go and vote for the candidate that best represents your personal interests and beliefs.
: a way of organizing a society in which major industries are owned and controlled by the government rather than by individual people and companies
I have to question socialism and why so many people ascribe to it. The “Concise Encyclopedia of Economics” describes socialism as a “tragic failure of the twentieth century.” Socialism depends on taking money from one group, giving it to another and controlling one group for the benefit of another. It could only work for so long. For this reason, I need to understand how socialists think. I'm trying to decode them.
To begin, I see socialism and communism used synonymously and that is not correct. From the research that I've done, Karl Marx touched on socialism, but only briefly. One must start from a capitalist society, move into socialism which is a necessary step towards communism. It is not a stopping point nor is it the same thing.
Socialism: From each according to his ability, to each according to his deeds.
Communism: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.
Okay, fantastic, looks like a great idea, except it's not. If I look simply at socialism, the greater the deed, the better you are treated OR the greater your ability, your deed spreads amongst many. The issue I have with this is, it wouldn't happen by choice but by force. People in general also would not have the choice as to who gets the benefits of their ability.
For example, let's say there are five manual labourers, one of which has a physical disability. He's there because he must have a job to feed his family. Instead of saying he should have a different type of job within the company such as sweeping floors, this person is kept on as a manual labourer. Since the rest can keep up with the work load and he does do some minor work, all of the wages have been adjusted accordingly. The four people who have the ability to do the job to it's fullest have taken a pay cut to support the one who can't out of some weird moral obligation. The choice was never given to them. Instead of moving the one to a more suited position and paying all accordingly, the one gets paid more and does less while the four get paid less and do more.
It all becomes about perspective and only those in control will determine what a “deed” is worth. There will always be problems with that. Someone will always disagree. There has to be a net loss somewhere.
Communism has its own problems, and the biggest one I see is the definition of “needs,” whose are worth more, and it doesn't matter what you do, you'll never get more than the basics of life. There can never be innovation in communism. There is no incentive for innovation; no one needs a smartphone.
Now back to decoding socialists.
From what I understand, they want business owners taxed as much as possible, they want the rich taxed as much as possible and they want various services made available by the government paid for by taxes. Socialists also want everything and everyone (except them) controlled by law and government. Everything should be nationalized or regulated. Am I right so far? Remember, this is my impression.
As long as TAX is the keyword here, there are problems with the socialist ideal and subsequently, the communist ideal.
The rich are mobile. The more a government taxes the rich, the more the rich are inclined to move. This was proven in France when they enacted a 75% tax rate on people who made more than 1 million Euro per year. Many wealthy French registered their residences in kinder “tax havens” such as Belgium or Switzerland. It's causing problems because the French government still doesn't have the revenue it was hoping for. It also happened in Maryland, USA. Between 2007 and 2010, so many taxes were created that people got frustrated and started leaving. So many people left Maryland that it caused a $2 billion decrease in tax revenue. Some articles say people left for other reasons such as weather, and I'm sure that's true, but that wouldn't account for that much of a decrease in tax revenue.
Socialists from what I read, want businesses taxed into non-existence. I don't understand. If they love taxes so much why kill the economy with such a tax burden? They usually pick on corporations. What's wrong with corporations? My husband's business is a corporation. Does that mean it's inherently evil? Probably, simply because he opened it as a corporation. If it were a sole proprietorship, would his business then be benign?
But why is Enbridge Inc. evil? Well, because it's an energy company AND it's an “Inc.” That means incorporated. There is probably a plethora of other reasons but we’ll pick on those some other time. The thing about any business is, it wants to make money or it dies. The easiest way to continue making money is legally. Yes, in the short term, cutting corners, screwing the little guy, and breaking the law would make anyone money but it never lasts. Following law and regulations costs - and is it ever annoying - but in the long run, no one complains and the company continues making money. It then hires more people, pays people, gives bonuses and does lots of other nifty stuff. All good companies do this.
Something else I could say about Enbridge or any good company is, a dollar made by them is not a dollar taken away from somebody else. Just because my husband makes money doesn't mean our neighbour doesn't. (He doesn't work for Enbridge, I'm just saying he makes a good living, Enbridge also makes a couple of bucks, life is good for producers!)
If the socialists had their way, both of these companies would be taxed so much that producing anything would be pointless. They wouldn't be able to take their profits and re-invest them into research and development or their employees OR themselves in the form of education. Say they want to purchase new safety equipment, they couldn't because their money went to taxes. No one works for free and private companies don't like working for the government. If too much money goes to the government, private capitalist companies of any kind would start closing down. Then where would all this beloved tax money come from? Where would all the “rich people” be that socialists like to complain about so much (and tax) if not for these large companies to help make them rich? Why would anyone start up a company that could grow into a large company, that make normal people into rich people?
Socialists also want the “rich” taxed and the definition for rich changes all the time. If we became as socialist as these advocates wanted, what's the incentive to make money? It would only be stolen. The product of one's mind is taken away in the form of taxes. When I see protesters make up signs that say “you can still be rich, just not that rich” why would one even bother, should the socialists win the argument? What right does someone else have to tell me what the limit of my bank account is, either in my business or personal account? How does this thought become okay? Is it because they are too lazy, or lacking, to make that money themselves without stealing it? Would they feel the same way if I said someone on welfare or employment insurance is only permitted their necessities, and a smart phone is not a necessity. They are permitted food, rent, utilities, clothing only. They'd scream from the bleachers and protest with fancy drawn up signs! Somehow I'd be wrong even though welfare is government money paid for by taxes.
So if you bring this out to its logical conclusion, socialism and communism have a shelf life. This type of government - if enacted to it's utmost potential - will fail. Once everything is nationalized, everything is regulated, everyone works in some fashion for the government or “for the greater good,” (according to ability, according to need) the country will be broke. For socialism to work at all, there must always be some form of capitalism from which to take. Socialism failed, and anyone who reads history and does any research whatsoever would know this. Communism failed. The guys who created it couldn't make this ideal work so why does anyone think they can make it work today?
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
George Santayana, The Life of Reason, Volume 1, 1905
Vladimir Lenin was the first person to try enacting socialism but soon realized the intrinsic difficulties of an economic system without profit incentives or competition. He thought the market would become less complex without these ideas in place, and that people would work for the greater good, not in rational self-interest. It fell apart quickly and a mixed economy was put back in place within four years. Soon after, various other leaders tried to save socialism and communism but things got worse in Russia. It ended in total economic disaster in the 1980's. There you have it. A history lesson in 30 seconds or less or your money back!
So let's try it again, only here! Sounds like a fantastic idea. Personally, I'd rather not but it seems people are insane. We all know what Einstein said about insanity.
Occupy Wall Street was an interesting attempt to force socialism upon us. People who didn't seem to work
and who had too much time on their hands moved into parks in a whole lot of cities, destroyed them, assaulted one another and made a general pain of themselves. They made up signs and protested about income inequality and wanted to reduce the influence of corporations on us as a whole (while texting on their iPhones.) They made demands of business and the government, and eventually lost interest and left. These demands however were to debilitate the evil “one percenter” and force the government into action against them. It is the “one percenter” that pays the “occupiers” bills so I'm not sure what they were hoping for. If they won, they'd see how much tax is now lost to them for their welfare cheques and other entitlement programs that they love so much.
People in Quebec want free education, paid for by tax dollars - which are paid for by people who work, and companies and stuff.
People don't want pipelines built, which will create jobs, and more taxes and more taxpayers and a better economy.
I could go on but I think you get my point.
So, in my efforts to decode the socialist mindset, I have completely failed. I still don't understand them. It wouldn't take much thought to figure most of this out. It wouldn't take much research to figure out socialism and communism have both failed as an economic system in our not too distant past. I have to ask, with so much out there to read and research, and with so many of these people calling themselves educated, why don't they know this? Could it be because they have degrees in gender studies and liberal arts instead of political sciences and macro-economics?
I've moved over here from another blog. I was at C.J.'s Opinions and decided I need a place to call my own so I created Island of Bob.
I'm not abandoning C.J.'s Opinions, I'm just no longer adding to it. Any new idea or opinion I get hit with will now end up here. I did copy one article over but that was more to see how my new place looked.
So far, I'm liking my new home. C.J's Opinions is just a blog. Island of Bob is a website and blog. Somehow that'll make things different. I'm just not sure how yet.
On Island of Bob, differences of opinions are welcomed. Individual freedom and responsibility is promoted. Respect, morality, and virtue is valued.
Island of Bob is still in its infancy and a work in progress. Sit back, relax and enjoy my little Island on the Internet.
2 months ago, James decided that he wanted to do the MS Bike Tour in Watrous, Saskatchewan. I thought he was nuts for a couple of reasons. He’d already done the MS Bike Tour Airdrie to Olds this year and Watrous is in Saskatchewan, but I encouraged him anyway. Then I found out we'd be staying on Little Manitou Lake. I saw a show about it years ago so that was exciting. It’s supposed to be a mystical healing lake don'tcha know. The natives say it's true so it must be true. I know this to be true - I am after all native.
We stayed in the Manitou Springs Hotel and Spa. They advertise the heck out of the spa but never seem to have an appointment open. I think they have exactly one person working in that spa. So I didn’t get to experience the spa, that's not really the point anyway. I really wanted a mani/pedi though, and maybe a relaxation massage. A facial wouldn’t have been too much to ask. Okay, I wanted some spa time dammit!
So, in the last 2 months, James gets on it and raises $2,001 for the MS Society Regina chapter. His goal was $5000+, but the flood so rudely interrupted his fund raising capabilities. Even we donated a whack of money to the flood so it’s all good. Not the flood, the donation choices.
I decided to volunteer as a SAG driver and a photographer for the first time so I was responsible to Gord. Gord has been responsible for safety for the rides for the past 24 years and I can see why. He has no doubts about anything and he knows his stuff from the first minute to the last.
6 rides, first actual signed form volunteering. Actual official volunteering was a little weird. I’m generally a team or support driver for specific cyclists, but as I only had one cyclist to support, it seemed a little redundant. I could have driven with him, pulled ahead, waited for him, and repeat. SAG driving seemed more interesting. Oh, I’m wrong, I was the driver for a media photographer for the cancer ride in 2010! Driving a Dodge truck in 1800 cyclists was a little intense!
For the Watrous ride though, they seemed to want pictures from point & shoot cameras and not me so I'll keep my photos, but the driving was cool. For First-Aid, this chapter uses the Canadian Ski Patrol. This is my first experience with them and they are awesome people. Very personable, like to answer questions and even when I said this SAG stuff is boring (and in all reality, you want it to be) they took it in good humour. As a team driver, I'm used to being out on the road all the time with my cyclists, not sitting around hoping nothing will happen but it was good. I got to see a marathon from a different point of view.
The Regina MS Society was also very helpful. They didn't mind 1001 questions and didn't treat their cyclists like a burden. They wanted the cyclists to be involved. The more the merrier! The only problem (un-problem?) was day one of the bike tour was on game day. Everyone was trying to finish so they could watch the 'Riders smack some other team down. I understand that other team was Montreal so that's okay. I could cheer for the green team this weekend. I may have to change my team of choice, Riders fans make Stampeders fans look like Sunday churchgoers.
Day 2 was very laid back. The cyclists were tired (and some were very hung over) but they got out there. Day 1 was 100km but day 2 was 50km so not as intimidating. James finished day 2 in 2 hours so not a bad day riding. We thought flat would be a nice change of pace. OMG was he ever wrong. Flat terrain is like riding on a trainer, there is no mercy. On hilly terrain you know you get to rest on the descents. The hills that are in Saskatchewan are half percent grade but 50 km long, in both directions! I wish I was kidding. AND the wind! It is always windy! And no light wind either! The trees don’t move, so it fools you, so you look off into the distance, then you get on your bike and move at a nice brisk 15 kilometers per hour!
After all was said and done, we went back to the hotel and decided to take a dip in the lake. They say you can't sink and it's true. I went to the deep part and just stayed there. It was pretty awesome! James doesn't usually go into water (no interest) but I got him into the lake. He was having some fun. The water tasted just awful though! I mean it was just gross. The chemical content of the water will tell you why:
Magnesium Sulphate (Epsom Salts): 308.38 grains/gram or 4,410 milligrams/litre
Magnesium Bicarbonate: 63.42 grains/gram or 907 milligrams/litre
Sodium Sulphate: 50.92 grains/gram or 728 milligrams/litre
Potassium Sulphate: 116.62 grains/gram or 1,670 milligrams/litre
Sodium Chloride: 1405.6 grains/gram or 20,100 milligrams/litre
Calcium Sulphate: 104.96 grains/gram or 1,500 milligrams/litre
Iron Oxide and Aluminium: .28 grains/gram or 4 milligrams/litre
Silica: .69 grains/gram or 9.9 milligrams/litre
Sulphur – some
Specific Gravity – 1.06
Tap Water – 1.00
Little Manitou Lake is called the Dead Sea of Canada. This lake is so chemical intensive because it doesn’t drain anywhere. Creeks and streams drain into it then the water just stays here. Due to the geology under the lake, it also doesn’t seep into the ground. I think there are only 2 lakes like it in the world. All kinds of beauty products are made from the lake too. The pool water in the hotel is straight from the lake, just heated up. You can tell, the water is very “golden” as they put it. I even got James into the pool for a short time, mostly because our room wasn't yet clean at 3:30pm. Yes, we have one or two issues with this hotel. Either way, we enjoyed our stay and the Bike tour.
Comparatively, the Regina chapter of the MS Society is much more accommodating than the Calgary chapter. They are nicer (and not fake nice, truly nice), far more approachable, and appear to be far more organized. There is no doubt about who does what. They have an answer for everything or knows who can answer your questions, even people who are first timers. They don’t fake their way through it. It was fantastic. The dinner was edible, more than edible, it was tasty and seconds were offered once everyone was fed. After dinner, they talked about the fundraising and what it actually provides for people with MS. This is the first time I’ve heard this. I only knew before this ride because I looked it up myself but I still appreciated that they spoke about it. I did have a minor issue with the 2 hour long speech. When the speaker was talking about the people who raised more than $2000 she gave a bio of everyone except the last 4 or so people. I felt like the last few people were insignificant comparatively. I am married to a professional speaker so I pick up on things like this.
All in all, going to Watrous was a fantastic experience. I'm glad we went out. It certainly gave me a different perspective on how things are different between the chapters. Given a choice, I'd give to this particular society year after year even if we can’t make it out for the ride. The Calgary chapter will still benefit from us but Regina, given their organized, accepting, and friendly attitude will certainly benefit from our fund raising as well.
MS Society Regina, SK: good job!
I'm a Canadian classical liberal (individual freedoms are important) who photographs stuff. I also happen to have few opinions about a few things. Read my stuff, you'll see what else there is to me.