Sunday, December 31, 2006

Back for today...

We had an unexpected death in the family during the holidays and both of us have the flu. Sorry for not posting lately. I should be back in a few days.

Monday, December 18, 2006

If you expected anything else, you're playing dumb...

With everything that has been happening in Palestine, the fighting and supposed civil war, it surprises me that some people make out like it actually is a surprise. What else did anyone expect the outcome of all this created chaos to end up in? Happiness? Utopia?

If you expected anything less than chaos, you are either playing dumb or playing along. The sad thing is, the players aren't the ones who have to live it. They get to sit back and look at it like it's some video game they had a hand in making, or they continue to ignore it. It's not their family or friends, so why should they care? It's real. People are suffering. It isn't a game.

Do you want in on the reality? Here are just a few things I've taken from What Really Happened

EU to Israel: Stop violating int'l law: "The EU will not recognise any changes to the pre-1967 borders other than those agreed by both parties,” the statement said. Link

Ex-soldiers break `silence' on Israeli excesses: "We provide the tools for people to understand the deeply woven moral corruption and numbness of what we do (in the Occupied Territories). It's like a slide; once you start going down, you keep going down." Link

Evacuation of settlement outpost in West Bank delayed: "Evacuation of the illegal West Bank settlement outpost of Migron, which was built on private Palestinian land, is likely to be delayed for another half year, according to a government brief submitted to the High Court of Justice on Sunday." Link

UNICEF 2006 One of The Worst Years for Palestine Children: United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said that 123 Palestinian children have been killed since outbreak of hostilities, more than double the 2005 figure., adding that some 340 children remain in detention facilities. Link

Israeli soldiers tell of indiscriminate killings by army and a culture of impunity: "The reason why I am telling you this is that I want the army to think about what they are asking us to do, shooting unarmed people. I don't think it's legal." Link

Here is an article from Filasteen: An Introduction to the Israel-Palestine Conflict. Link

From The Truth Will Set You Free:

I Swear...: "However, for the past month or so, I have been filling out some schools' applications. Most of them are American. It gets easier by time to repeat what you first have trouble in articulating and then jotting down. All follow the same pattern, yet not when it comes to the nationality part. Of course, "Palestine" is never provided as an option. It crushes one's feelings to find out that you are not considered what you believe you are. It is like hallucinating while the whole world mocks you." (As an aside, this article has a beautiful picture of Palestinian students graduating from University, and believe it or not they actually look like you and me! Yes, they really are normal people! A_R Imagine That!) Link

Collective punishment, through a child's eyes: Together with another 5,000 or so residents of Gaza, who have also been waiting in recent weeks to return to their homes, she was crammed with her toddler for hours in an endless line at the crossing. "Elbow to elbow, like cattle," is how she describes this in her blog, until being pushed back in shame once again. Link

(I could go on all day with this list, but if that doesn't give you an idea about why this is happening, nothing will. And thanks to Mr. Harper, Canadians have a hand in this. I don't know about you, but it doesn't make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, it makes me feel like Canada has turned their back on doing the right thing. It makes me feel like this Government should be voted out as soon as possible. A_R)

Sunday, December 17, 2006

So, who looks at your blog?

I was reading Saskboy's (one of my favorite bloggers along with the dawg bloggers) and read his excellent post on how to get traffic to your site. I knew that I wouldn't be a big hit. First, I'm not really into politics, I've always been more of a political by-stander. I don't always know who is who, or even what they do. I joined Prog Blog for two reasons, I found I liked reading what the people on the list had to say and that they were from various backgrounds and parties. I was out to learn all about the inner workings of the government. 2nd, I wanted on a list to have some readers.

But, since I'm not as educated or savvy, I'm not a big hit when it comes to getting traffic from the Prog Bloggers. Who visits my site? The government. From the US State Department to the Canadian House of Commons. Infact the Trade Dept and International Foreign Affairs were here looking at my list of 5 things Feminism has done for me this week. I get a lot of hits from them. The remainder comes from google. I had the most hits from my Paraguay article because someone mentioned it in a Harvard forum. You'll get hit everytime you write about a corporation, mine or stock.

I needed a place to store all the news articles I had saved and wanted to look into further, and my computer was getting over run. So, when I started this blog, it was mainly a storage bin. Then I thought I'd like to write about stuff the odd time. I'm not good at it, but that has never stopped me from doing anything else. :)

The novelty wears off from time to time and I have to force myself to keep posting. The are certain issues I have that are very important to me and for that reason alone I will persist in keeping this blog alive as long as I can. I'm not as interested in having a large audience anymore, because I know if some is interested in a subject, they will google it and find me. And that is what I want. The people that want to know more about the things I have posted about things don't always make it to the big media and might otherwise have a hard time finding it.

I'd hardly complain about having a larger audience, but then that would put pressure on me to do a better job, and write more often than I do. To actually get serious about my blog. When I have to get serious about something, that's usually when I lose interest. I don't like schedules or being pressured. I am one of those people other people complain about because I won't be nailed down to anything, be it when we'll get together or if I'll make them a piece of jewelry. Which is why I don't sell it. I give plenty away, but never sell a piece.

For now, I'll be happy with a minimal amount of readers. 6 months from now that could change, or I could stop blogging all together. Who knows?

Anyway, I've had one glass of wine too many, my company has just left and I think I'll curl up on the sofa with a good book. If you feel inclined to share where your readership comes from, please do.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Harper hired ex-con as an advisor

and NDP ethics critic Pat Martin questioned whether Harper knew about Carson's past when he was hired, but stressed that people deserve a second chance in life.
"Having a past offence in your record I don't think precludes you from having a position of confidence, as long as there was full disclosure along the way," Martin said. Link

typical government stuff...

CPR has plans to expand to take advantage of busy Asian trade

Say good-bye to any hopes of seeing more "made in Canada" stamped the products we buy. Link to article.

Canadian victims of terrorism may one day be able to sue foreign states that sponsor or harbour terrorists.

Couldn't that be almost every country in the world. Who gets to say who are the terrorists? It seems to me they are everywhere! Supposedly even Canada has some. So does that mean the Canadian Government can be sued? Anyway, here is the link.

North American Union: Treaty and Treason

A good article I stumbled across. You can also keep up to date on the Border Trade Alliance here

Friday, December 15, 2006

Farewell John Bolton

"American democracy is truly a wonder, not because of its own self-inflated glory and rhetoric of its greatness, but because, contrary to that, of its shallowness and lack of democratic processes that put some of the most powerful people in the world into positions for which none of them have been elected. Further, they are mostly people who have not been elected by anyone at all for anything." Continued here.

Residents in Quebec file an $8.4-million class-action lawsuit to fight the province's privatization plans for provincial park.

The two residents spearheading the legal fight are descendants of donors who bequeathed money or land in the early 20th century to create the park and preserve the green space. Link

5 articles that made me think WTF!

WTF #1. This one had me seeing red!
VRA EXPANSION IN DANGER... As gov’t shies away from sovereign guarantee for $215m Link

WTF #2. A school in Perth will register children for lessons by scanning their fingers when they enter a classroom at the start of a lesson. Check out what they had to say: "As far as we were concerned, it wasn't necessary for us to seek parental consent in this. It's a system that has been approved by the DfES and it's supported by Capita SIMS." Link

WTF #3. John Bolton and former diplomats from Israel and Canada called on the United Nations yesterday to charge Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with inciting genocide. BUT THEY CONTINUE TO IGNORE THE STARVATION, KILLINGS, DEMOLITION OF HOMES, THEFT OF LAND AND INHUMANE TREATMENT OF PALESTINIANS. Link

WTF #4. Peacekeeping Centre assured audit wouldn't be rigorous. Link

WTF #5. Africa in the middle of U.S.-European biotech trade war Link

Friday Little Bits

Introducing Friday Little Bits. Every Friday I will post 10 quick headlines in one post. Things I've saved over time that I think others might be interested in...or not.

#1 - On November 7th, 2006, Saskatchewan Wheat Pool (SWP) announced through the media its intent to take over Agricore United through a share exchange. They are calling it a merger. It isn't. It is a hostile proposal. Link

#2 - The Ohio House yesterday voted 81-5 to jump-start a bill designed to give eight states and two Canadian provinces the power to prevent diversion of increasingly valuable Great Lakes water. Link

#3 - Lawmakers' hypotheticals stall effort to protect Great Lakes. Quebec and separation enter US political debate: "What happens if Quebec secedes from Canada and becomes its own country?" Rep. Bill Seitz asked the bill's sponsor, Rep. Matthew Dolan, in one recent memo. Link

#4 - The government is selling the logic of raising the current mining royalty to Canadian gold mining companies operating in Tanzania. Link

#5 - Plains All American Pipeline, operator of about 15,000 miles of pipelines in the U.S. and Canada, plans to build a $77 million terminal in Illinois to increase access to U.S. and Canadian markets. Link

#6 - GMO : Independent Scientists Demand A Ban on GM Food & Feed while All GM Crops Are Tested Link

#7 - The Bush administration is clamping down on scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey, the latest agency subjected to controls on research that might go against official policy. Link

#8 - The Guyana Geology and Mines Commission foresees a "massive" increase in oil prospecting and drilling once a border dispute with Suriname is resolved, Guyana's government reported. Link

#9 - Save The USA (a website I stumbled across) Link

#10 - Could the global trend toward the breakup of states reach a Latin America pressed by conflict, inequality, and regional fissure? Link

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Come on people, we have to help this guy!!!!!!

There has to be some way we can get a digital camcorder in this guys hands. Someone has to know someone who can donate, give one wholesale, or even one they no longer use. He's been in the news, it's not a scam, and he is a great activist, people love him! He's on a fixed income and would never be able to afford one.

Please leave a comment or contact Charles himself if you can help in any way. Let's get Charles live blogging!

Mexico ambassador: We need North American Union in 8 years

In a panel discussion on U.S.-Mexico relations at the University of Texas at San Antonio, Enrique Berruga, Mexico’s ambassador to theNations, said a North American Union is needed.

Another article from this site:
Port San Antonio, Lazaro Cardenas and Free Trade Alliance Conduct Second Corridor Marketing Visit to Southern China . Link

Unions upset about oilsands and overseas contracts

The decision Synenco Energy and SinoCanada Petroleum Corp.’s to contract more than half of its oilsands mine construction to China, Korea and Malaysia will hurt local jobs.

Opti-Nexen’s Long Lake and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd.’s Horizon also exported the contracts to Asia.

They want government take some action but premier-designate Ed Stelmach says he has no intention of intervening. Link

Canada signs production agreement for F-35 fighter

ain't war grand?

Marine Brig. Gen. David Heinz, deputy director of the F-35 program, last week told Reuters that Canada -- which has already contributed $150 million to the program -- would sign the memorandum on Monday, followed by Australia on Tuesday.

The remaining partners on the $276.5-billion project to develop and build a new family of radar-evading warplanes, including Britain, Italy, Turkey and Denmark, are due to sign the agreement by the end of the year, Heinz said.
(End) Link

Who pays? Who gets to stuff their pockets? Democracy (Western style), you just have to love it.

Another article:
"Aerospace industry to get access to $8B in industrial opportunities" Link

Book Tag

The instructions:
Find the nearest book. Turn to page 123. Go to the fifth sentence on the page. Copy out the next three sentences and post to your blog. Name the book and the author.

""Major problems arise for the Bolivarian (as for most other Latin American) countries in the area of urban growth. Migration to the cities have been continuous since the beginning of the century. Because of this, together with the high fertility rate, the capital cities are growing at an annual rate of more than 7 percent, and will double in size in ten years."

Goals for Mankind
(A Report to the Club of Rome on the New Horizons of Global Community)
Ervin Laszlo et al.

Consider yourself tagged.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

"Money Is Too Important" To Trust With Central Bankers!

I wonder if by some sudden unknown reason the Canadian dollar and the American Dollar will become equal. Dollar for dollar. Hmmmmmm Well come on, isn't that the plan? The great hype for the adoption of the "Amero"

Anyway, here is the link to a great article that has nothing to do with my little conspiracy rant above.

ThermoEnergy Gets $1.5 Million to Build Plant in Canada

I only put this up because I wondered why they are building it in Canada and not in the States.
Anyone have an answer?

Canadian mining companies are well behind other mining nations when it comes to disclosure on social and environmental issues


and then go check out this story that mentions another Canadian mining company:
Tanzania: Secret Contracts, Public Headache

What's Up (rather down) with the Canadian Dollar?

(Quip from this article)

the Canadian Dollar is tracking the anemic U.S. greenback southward. On Friday, December 8th with the large rise in the U.S. Dollar, the Canadian Dollar did virtually nothing. Seems we cannot get a break here, good or bad.

From a fundamental basis, the reason we see for the decline and the short-term (we hope) predicament for the Canadian Dollar is due to the recent proposed changes in the Canadian income tax laws with respect to all Canadian Royalty Income Trusts. However, the major impact is on the oil and gas sector. Many investors, Canadian and U.S. and others) have been thrown into shock at the decline in value of their trusts and are currently in a dilemma in terms of what to do. This we feel is the basis of the problem with the loonie over which we as investors have no control.

Canada's international grain customers express concerns over government approach to the Canadian Wheat Board

Quips from the article:

CWB president and CEO Adrian Measner and elected director Allen Oberg will addresses the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry tonight at 7 p.m. EST and will relay messages from buyers in China, Singapore, Mexico, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Canada.

With our concern over the position of Adrian and the Board in general, we feel that we would be ultimately forced to look elsewhere in the world in order to confidently ensure a continued supply of high-quality wheat,” wrote Brett Warburton, executive director of the United Kingdom’s Warburtons.v

From Mexico, Grupo Altex president Roberto Servitje wrote: “We would hate to see you adopting the U.S. model where we have to deal with the large trading houses that always try to take advantage of both farmers and clients like us and very seldom, if ever, deliver what they promise.”

In another of the letters, now posted on the CWB’s Web site at , China’s COFCO buying agency expresses “astonishment” at the pending termination of Measner.

Other CWB news

Canadian Wheat Board to Use Winnipeg Commodity Exchange Western Barley Contract. Link

Lockheed building high-tech system with North America's SuperCorridor Coalition

...with sensors along a highway running from Texas to Canada. This article is just loaded with information about this Super Corridor / NAFTA Super Highway. We are going to be soooooo screwed people. And we can't say we were taken unaware. this has been common knowledge for sometime. But no one is doing anything about it. When it is finished, and tax dollars have been spent, and people finally clue into how they were duped, they will whine and rant. It will be too late. I'm sure that is what they are counting on.

And people in Ontario were fuming about how we got screwed by the 407 deal! Has anyone looked into just how big a deal this new "Corridor" is?

This is going to create major job losses for many people in America and Canada, thousands of land owners will be affected.

The only political party that had the guts to talk openly about it is the Canadian Action Party. Either the other parties have no balls or they agree with it. Because pretending not to know about it, won't work. Pretending that it ISN"T what it IS, won't work. And if they don't take action to protect Canadian interests, instead of corporate interests, they should not be running our Country. There are more "we the people" in Canada. WE are the majority. They are supposed to represent the people.

Has anyone spoken to the people that lead their party about this? I'd be curious to know what actions other parties have taken. Talk is cheap. It means nothing.

Until then, bend over, because you are being screwed by the people you are supporting. You are nothing but a vote to them. Nothing more. If you think you are special, you are deluded. You are the pencil that marks the X on a piece of paper. That is what you are good for and that is all. But are they really looking out for Canada, for the people? Can you really believe it when NOTHING is even being brought up about it?