Excited Delirium

Stories about Excited Delirium, the Shock Economy and a little fiction here and there.

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Ottawa

Today in Ottawa.

The Cons brought this on Canada.

George Bush may have converted 9/11 into a heroic moment which saved his profile – for a short time – but I can’t help thinking that events in Ottawa today are a direct result of the horrifying and misdirected politics of the Stephen Harper Conservatives.

Whether it’s a couple of gun nuts blasting away at the public, blow-back from the radicalized Canadians (assuming such a beast hasn’t been manufactured by the MIC) or massive incompetence on the part of our security establishment as a result of spying on Canadians and environmental groups, it’s more clear than ever that the Cons are firmly on the wrong side of history after today.

I am disgusted with where this government has taken Canada and the rest of Canada should be as well.

The Harper government has invited attack on our soil because of their misguided political agendas.

This is a sad day for Canada.

The greatest fear I have is not gun toting criminals or terrorists, but that Harper will quickly leverage this to his advantage to eliminate any of the few freedoms that we have left.  He will continue his crusade and make Canada an even uglier face in the world of politics.

When it all goes down, who does Harper call?  Benjamin Netanyahu, like he’s the frickin’ boss of Harper.

Much like 9/11 shielded Donald Rumsfeld’s disclosure of truth about Pentagon spending, today’s attacks in Ottawa will prevent anyone from questioning Harper’s new legislation that will put us all in a permanent state of lock-down.

It is a sad, sad day and my kids will one day ask why we did nothing to prevent it from happening.

Ottawa Shooting

What a sad day.

Ottawa’s in lockdown.  It’ll probably never truly recover from lockdown.

My immediate concerns are for friends and family in the area.  I hope they’re all safe at home and comforting each other.

If you haven’t heard, Ottawa was ‘under attack’ by an unknown number of gun men earlier this morning.

For updates, I’m following Twitter:

  • #ottawa
  • #ottawashooting
  • #prayforottawa

There’s so much to say and ask, but that will happen in time.

On Empty Campaign Promises

Democracy is brilliant.  Unfortunately, people are stupid.

Why else in the run up to the municipal elections would there even be a ‘debate’ concerning specific candidates?

I loathe the expressions that libertarian types use when running for election:

  • I’ll stop the gravy train
  • Zero budget increases for 4 years
  • Run the town like a business

But people still flock to their sides, pledging support and damning those that suggest public office should be run by professionally trained public officials.

I don’t mind a professional approach to things.  In fact, maybe that’s the ‘between the lines’ suggestion from candidates that pledge to stop gravy trains – candidates that don’t take this approach are pathetic, communist slobs?

When you pledge to run a city like a business, do you know how many people you’re insulting?  Are PEOPLE from other types of organizations not invited to the table?  What about non-profits and charities?  Firemen and police services?  Planners and city workers?  Other organizations that don’t fit into your square hole?

Are they not professional?  Do they not focus on their jobs with care and pride?  Or are you simply trying to suggest that as a business, you’re ready to play favourites, enter the grey zone of regulations using public funds, cater to the highest bidder but not necessarily the best provider and sell off anything that doesn’t turn a profit?  Or even lose money, like some of the world’s largest corporations have in the past?

Or will you be corrupt and vile, like some of the greatest corporate disasters in our history like Enron, WorldCom, the dotcom boom/bust and bankers, all of whom have robbed the average citizens of trillions of dollars in personal savings and real estate?

And how will you be accountable to your stakeholders, the voters?  Will your first act be one to introduce recall, an important way for the public to remove someone from office once they prove to be inept?  How do we fire you if you’re incompetent?

We can’t.

And that’s why public office cannot be run like a business.  You have to be experienced, accountable, equitable and yes, bureaucratic.

The good news is that you’re only one vote of many.

C’mon people:  put your emotion and libertarian sentiments aside for a few minutes and use the brain you were born with.  When you vote next week, please consider experience, knowledge and look at the people that are endorsing the candidates.

Municipal Vote Thoughts: Don’t Promise to Run a City Like a Business!

A City is NOT a business.

Period.

The people that use the ‘I’ll run it like a business’ mantra have run too many businesses (probably into the ground or not in Canada) to understand and appreciate that not everyone thinks and acts like a ‘businessperson’.

It’s true.

There are bureaucrats.  These pockets of people who make our governments work have acquired such a negative tone as a result of decades of right-wing politicians and lobbyists attacking them, but they have an armada of endearing qualities that I actually admire.  They are patient, knowledgeable, usually helpful (especially when you treat them like decent human beings), connected, grounded, responsible and passionate about public services.

There are social workers.  There are teachers and educators.

There are employees of the public services, including a diverse range of talents and demands, like police, health unit workers, firemen (and women), garbage collectors (those that haven’t been privatized).

There are city planners and developers that must account for different situations that a typical ‘business’ environment may not allow.

In my experience, none or few of these people respond well to the authoritarian and controlling dictates of the business-person mindset.  In fact, they have chosen their vocations specifically because they do NOT want to work for a large corporation.  For those of you who have worked in ‘businesses’ let me remind you that it ain’t pretty at the best of times, so I hope you appreciate what I’m saying.

Corporations are simply reflections of people, usually very bad people.  As people rise to the top, corporations tend to start to reflect the absolute worst traits that humanity has to offer.  Greed.  Control.  Authority.  Inflexibility.  Manipulation.  Reckless regard for the world around us.  Limited Liability.  Those that engage in charities only do so because they calculate the marketing benefit to it.  If they do otherwise, they’re not a good business.

With this in mind, why the hell would I ever vote for someone that promises to run a City (or Province or Country) like a business?

I’ve had enough of this rhetoric and will ask the simple questions:

  • What is your public service experience?
  • What is your public service education or training?
  • Describe the different types of groups that you work with and your thoughts on working with unique groups of people.

If you don’t have public experience, you really shouldn’t be running for public office.  It’s that simple.

Canada’s Capital Punishment Foreign Policy

An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind – Gandhi

Stephen Harper and his cabal of petty warlords have declared war on the world.

If you listen to John Baird and his ilk, we must engage in carpet bombing and killing thousands of innocent civilians because Canada now lives by an ‘eye for an eye (and some)’ foreign policy.

This contradicts our national policy of (a) innocent before proven guilty and (b) imprisonment for crimes committed as opposed to the death penalty.

There has been no judge, jury or decision from a larger body such as the United Nations, hobbled by its owners into being a useless institution where people bitch and argue.

And now that Canada has declared war on the world, let’s hope the world doesn’t fight back.

Stephen Harper’s War For Oil

Stephen Harper has eased his tone a little, but he is most certainly a Dog of War.  Or should I say, frantic puppy?

In the run-up to the 2003 Iraq invasion, he and his fellow Reformer / Nazis were all too quick to label Chretien et al pinkos, commies and traitors for not supporting the US-lead and highly wasteful attack in the Middle East.

And today, without invitation from the US, Stephen Harper is letting loose his puppies of war and is insisting that we rise up and defeat the Holy Terror of Islam known as ISIS – NEW IMPROVED TERROR from the US for the Middle East (TM).

And why?  Because it’s the right thing to do?

No.

Because it provides yet another justification for Dirty Oil from his own backyard of Alberta.

(Ad pitch from the PMO, with soft, silky tone in voice and blue-sweatered garb to match):  ‘Why buy oil that funds NEW IMPROVED TERROR when you can buy non-violent petroleum from SteveCo?’

It’s all part of the plan to get what Stephen Harper wants:  a vein for his junk.

Fed Auditor Fired for Outing Goldman Sachs for Conflicts

Goldman Sachs has pulled the strings again with the Fed:  an auditor with the Fed (which is not a public body, but is owned by the banks) was fired because she was bold enough to remind her bosses at the Fed that Goldman had engaged in very clear actions of conflict of interest.

Read more here.

 

Sigh … Who are the Extremists?

David Cameron, UK Prime Minister, has joined a growing league of morons who think any opposition to the military madness against Islam or topics like 9/11 Truth, environmentalism and common sense makes one a ‘terrorist’.

Sigh … this blatant ‘with us or against us’ stupidity will get us all killed.

Why do we keep letting this happen?

How is it that people of supposed credibility can get away with painting so many millions of people with a very broad ‘anti’ brush?

Judging a (Municipal Candidate’s) Book by Their (Technological) Cover?

Yes, I am going to judge candidates by what they tell me about their appreciation for technology.  Not by what they say, but by their communications tools.

I have a very simple litmus test for the candidates that I will choose for the upcoming municipal election:  are they technologically competent, or at least using best practices when it comes to basic (BASIC!) best practices when it comes to their digital presence.

This litmus test is important to me for the following reasons:

  1. Do they have a basic appreciation of what it means to me that they are technologically competent?
  2. IMHO, any candidate anywhere who fails to comprehend and exhibit basic web and digital best practices are clearly ‘of the past’.  They are dinosaurs that do not comprehend that the future is happening right now.
  3. Not having a web site and various social media pages is a fail.  Period.

Here are a few lists of candidates in various regions:

Ottawa:  http://ottawa.ca/en/city-hall/your-city-government/elections/mayor

London:  http://www.london.ca/city-hall/elections/list-of-candidates/Pages/Mayor.aspx

Oshawa:  http://www.oshawa.ca/election/2014/candidates-registered.asp

Toronto:  http://app.toronto.ca/vote/campaign.do

Windsor:  http://www.citywindsor.ca/cityhall/municipal-election/pages/municipal-election.aspx

To pass my litmus test, here are my basic requirements of expectations:

  1. A web site that clearly identifies their name
  2. Similar social pages that do the same
  3. A contact email address that is something like ‘info@candidatename.ca’
  4. A toll-free or at least local phone number for the campaign office
  5. Some experimental attributes, such as an app or an open feedback page for voters to register opinion and (gasp!) ideas

For Ottawa, several candidates had web sites listed, but only two had email addresses that matched my criteria:  Mike Maguire and Jim Watson.

In the case of London, only one candidate has what I deem to be a functional political email address and web page:  Matt Brown.

Oshawa:  3 candidates had web sites and 3 used proper emails.

And Toronto?  Well, first the City has an app.  Cool.  The City also lists all candidates on their web page.  I searched ‘F’ and because neither of the Fords have web sites listed (while more than half seem to have invested prudently in the ‘modern, wacky stuff called the Interweb’), I would not vote for them, using my basic criteria.

And there you have it folks.  Try this little test with your local candidates.  If they can’t express with their marketing and basic appreciation of technology, I believe that they are unacceptable as a candidate.

Ageist?  Perhaps my views could be interpreted that way.

Snobby.  Damn straight.

But I will NOT vote for someone who’s ‘old school’ and who sees the web and technology as a threat and not an opportunity.

World War III Started By Lies

It’s Sunday, it’s a beautiful morning and I have to purge these dirty, ugly about American, Stevie and ISIS so that I can go out and enjoy the rest of my day.

So, I hate to be a negative nilly, but I’m pretty sure Obama declared WW III this past week at the UN conference and our hapless leader chimed right in, begging to be a part of any fight.

ISIS – the ubiquitous, unnamed yet named organization that’s the “NEW IMPROVED” terrorism – has become the target of endless bombings, attacks and destruction at the hands of America, guaranteeing an endless war on Islam.

Stephen Harper was quick to pile on, even to a point where Americans were reminding us that he offered to join the party and wasn’t asked to provide supplies and tools for attacks.

In this report on Global News, the Americans deny asking Canada for support in any mission related to ISIS, and yet the Harper government has repeatedly lied about this simple fact, claiming that they were asked.

Why the lies, Steve?  What’s up your sleeve and how are you planning on turning this into a campaign strategy for 2015 because, after all, we know that’s the ONLY thing that matters to you.

Do you need a war on the NEW & IMPROVED TERROR known as ISIS in order to scare us into thinking ‘you’re the only one who’s able to run the country during a time of instability and frightening villains who are threatening our way of life …’

Blah blah blah.  Same old rhetoric from your playbook of treating us like idiots?

What’s truly disturbing about all of this is that World War III has been declared while we all sleep and the targets were manufactured by the Americans in the first place!

OK folks … go back to sleep.  Keep working in your slave jobs to pay taxes to be funneled into the defense/offense machine that will kill thousands of people in the Middle East.  All in the name of ‘peace’ in the Middle East.