Category Archives: Commentary

Road Testing Seniors

I was listening to the CBC this morning on my drive into work; I had just snagged my free morning coffee and was being informed by the pleasant newsvoices of the CBC morning drivetime hosts when they brought up the Ontario Government worrying over how to make Seniors stop driving when they are no longer capable.

I thought “That’s funny, just yesterday I watched and attempted to help a senior lady park.  She kept on bumping into things and failing” that’s a strange coincidence.

So, I can only imagine where this is going to go; depending upon how corrupt the Ministers involved are.

You see, road testing in Ontario is a private affair, meaning a private company profits from it.  This is the same private firm that has to turn a profit on a government level service.  I can see it now, mandatory re-testing with license renewal and since it’s a road test it’ll cost like 75-100 bucks minimum each time.  All in the name of safety.

The sad knock on from that is that with less drivers there would be less gas and road taxes.  The net effect being less money in the hands of the government in the form of consumption taxes and more cash in private hands.

You just know that the private testing firm won’t increase the numbers of testers in reaction either, it’ll plead overworked and just charge more.

Just you wait.

Shock to the System – Billy Idol and the LA riots

It’s a heat wave here in London; the kind of Heat Wave that inspired the Predator to storm LA and take on Danny Glover and Gary Busey in a three knockout bout that took down about half the real estate Arnold Schwarzenegger did in Terminator 2.  It’s hot, humid and there is that Rain Forest, Semi-Tropical moistness in the air that either anesthetizes or inflames any long running grievances.  It’s a beer and a pound or it’s time to throw down, if you will.

It’s been about 2 weeks since the G20 summit kicked off in Toronto and the heat is still on there;  there was damage and some looting and not a small amount of controversy surrounding the behavior of the police flown in to number into the thousands to protect Toronto from violence and protest that got out of hand.

In 1992, LA was simmering, boiling over and it was the subsequent acquittal of the police in the caught on video beating of Rodney King that proved to be to the catalyst to set things off:

Here in London and Toronto; there’s a less imminent; less urgent current of unrest regarding what happened over in Toronto; there is going to be an inquiry…but like those before it (when Quebec Police were forced to admit that they had acted as agents provocateurs during protests in Quebec, I doubt anything will come of it.   We have people herded up and thrown into cages for being out and about where the police didn’t like it; thousands of police on hand who couldn’t prevent wide-scale damage in Toronto.  Something is up there.

So; why am I even thinking about all of this?  Billy Idol.

Billy Idol released  Shock to the System; a single about the Riots.

Some of the music inspired by the Riots is about the violence, some about the police and some about the peace that was needed in the aftermath.  That simmering resentment though, it never appears to have really gone anywhere.  I wonder if it will flare up anywhere else?

Evolution Exists, of this I have no doubt….

But this does not provide proof of ongoing evolution:

But farmers sprayed so much Roundup that weeds quickly evolved to survive it. “What we’re talking about here is Darwinian evolution in fast-forward,” Mike Owen, a weed scientist at Iowa State University, said.

Farmers Cope with Roundup resistant weeds

In all likelihood what the farmers are seeing is the rapid population of a mutant breed of weeds that already existed but is now thriving in the absence of any non-roundup based weed control.  It’s nice to think that this is an example of macro-evolution in action, but I suspect that this is simply the proliferation of an existing species.  Maybe not, but it’s more likely.

Nick Griffin, Objectively anti-Scotland

But you were asking Gadaffi for money, weren’t you?

We were asking them for money if they were giving it, yes.

You had no reservation about going to a government that supported terrorists, and asking them for financial support?

We looked at Gadaffi’s ideas. A lot of what was said about Gadaffi in all probability is propaganda.

There you have it Scotland; if EVER you feel the need to vote for the BNP, make sure you remember, the BNP is funded in part by Libya and Libyans; remember them?

Passengers and crew

All 243 passengers and 16 crew members were killed. Eleven residents of Lockerbie also died. Of the total of 270 fatalities, 190 were American citizens.[18][19] The 270 victims of the bombing came from 21 countries.[19][20]
Dr Eckert told Scottish police that distinctive marks on Captain MacQuarrie’s thumb suggested he had been hanging onto the yoke of the plane as it descended, and may have been alive when the plane crashed. The captain, first officer, flight engineer, a flight attendant and a number of first-class passengers were found still strapped to their seats inside the nose section when it crashed in a field by a tiny church in the village of Tundergarth. The inquest heard that the flight attendant was alive when found by a farmer’s wife, but died before her rescuer could summon help.[11][page needed]

Prominent among the passenger victims was the 50-year-old UN Commissioner for Namibia, Bernt Carlsson, who would have attended the signing ceremony at UN headquarters on 22 December 1988 of the New York Accords.[21]

Paul Avron Jeffreys, former bass player with the UK group Cockney Rebel, was on the flight with his new wife Rachel, en route to their honeymoon celebration.[citation needed]

Another victim was poet Joanna Walton, girlfriend to and main lyricist of Robert Fripp‘s 1979 Exposure album.[citation needed]

Jonathan White, aged 33, the son of actor David White (who played Larry Tate on Bewitched), was also killed. He had recently graduated from UCLA.[citation needed]

Those Libyans; the ones that blew up that plane over Lockerbie, those ones.  The BNP supports them and is paid by them.

Remember, by extension, the BNP supporters of Terrorism!

Also; if there is an absurd absolutist position, Nick is bound to take it up!

Can you clarify something about climate change? On your website, it says: “The BNP accepts that climate change, of whatever origin, is a threat to Britain. Current evidence suggests that some of it may be man-made; even if this is not the case, then the principle of ‘better safe than sorry’ applies.”

Good lord, I will shoot someone for that. It’s clearly dated. Climate change does happen, no doubt. But the climate is always changing. I think that website stuff was written about three years ago. The whole thing is a hoax.

Not a Student of History ‘neither’

If we withdrew from Afghanistan, wouldn’t that be admitting defeat to Al-Qaeda?

No, because we’re not fighting Al-Qaeda. We’re fighting Afghan peasants and they’ve always beaten everyone. Of course we’re going to lose. We can’t win in Afghanistan. Even the Soviet Union couldn’t win there. The only way you could win there is if you nuked it, which can’t be done.

[Even the poorest student of recent history could point to the CIA’s secret war and Charlie Wilson’s tireless help there, not simple Peasant Gumption]

On Isreal:

The BNP has always had this reputation of being anti-Jewish. What’s your view on Israel and does it have the right to selfdetermination?

Yes, we’ve changed the position very radically from being knee-jerk support of the Palestinians, not solely from an antisemitic point of view, also sympathy. These are a people whose ancestral land has been taken away by recent arrivals.

[Translation:  It turns out some Liberals like to support the Palestinians; we took a long look at it and found ourselves conflicted, because some of those Liberals can read]

on being labelled a Fascist:

How do you react to being called a fascist?

We’re not fascist. If fascism is defined in its proper sense, it’s about worship of the state or of a man that personifies the state. Our tradition is very much in the British tradition of limited government with checks and balances and so on.

[If you change the definition from the commonly held one, we’re not, so there]

You could have fooled me. Half your policy programme involves a larger state.

We’re not fascist in that regard. It’s about a close, almost incestuous relationship, between the state and the corporations. It’s corporate fascism. The Thatcherite, Blairite PFI – that’s fascist. Another defining factor of fascism is the use of political violence as a political weapon against your opponents. And we’re the victims of a Marxist fascism – we do not practise or want to practise violence against anyone else.

There you go, Nick is Pro Terror, Anti-Scotland, Anti-Thatcher, Pro Curry, Pro-Seventies Britain (have you seen any news footage from 70s Britain, that’s what swept Thatcher into Power you BNP dunce)

The Nuclear Option

But I set out to learn, as the data became unclassified, about just what I had seen. Here is what I found out. Operation Plumbbob was a series of twenty nine tests nearly all above ground. They had begun on May 28, 1957 with “Boltzmann” and ended on October 5 that year with “Morgan.” The series, which was the most extensive ever done at Mercury, put 58.3 million curies of radio-iodine into the atmosphere. One-thousandth of a curie is what would be used in a liver scan. The radioactivity went all over the United States, with clusters in places like Maine. It is estimated that these tests caused some 38,000 thyroid cancers leading to about 2,000 deaths. The health burden of these tests put enough pressure—despite the protests of people like Edward Teller—to bring a halt to them. The same information can be gathered from an underground test witnessed only by mechanical devices.


Much has been made over the past year and a bit over any attempt to level the playing field in the States between the haves and the have-nots.  Strangely, a number of the have-nots have spent a large amount of time working against their own interests.  This should come as no surprise from a people who would kill thousands of their own people in the name of “defense” .  That said, it seems that when a country is actively irradiating it’s people and leaving ne’er expiring death spores across itself it would at least take time out to say, hey let’s make sure that everyone can afford decent medical care.

When you see an actual medicare user rally against “government health care” you understand how insane the Generation that did this to itself really is.

Next time, make it into an ash-tray

We’ve got a Kauri wood candle holder dated at over 30,000 years old, a present from a friend in NZ. It’s extremely tacky thanks to the cheap gold-metal fitting that’s been fastened into the candle hole. 33,000 years, and what is some lovely fine-grained wood got turned into artless cheap-looking tourist bollocks. There’s something profound in that about human nature.

posted by dowcrag at 10:50 AM on March 22

What the hell is going on here?

When all else Fails, play Blondie

What else can this guy do?

I make it a point not to whine here on the blog about work; it slips out on the twitter feed here and there; but it’s taking a real heavy load of intestinal fortitude to keep from going all LiveJournal over some static at work.

When I was at my last employer it seemed every day that I was under the gun of probable unemployment; that feeling may have been engendered by my first manager telling his entire team in no uncertain terms that our jobs were about as solid as tech stocks in 2000.  This was 1997, we had just fired 23 people from my team (23 of the 25 that where hired along with me oddly enough)

I saw people get dismissed over and over, whole sections of the firm vanishing in the name of keeping the business trim.  I suppose at the upper levels; this was the way to do it.  After what six major layoffs (rifs) and so on I never shook the “I’m next” feeling.  It pervades my work even now.

Why don’t others feel this way?  Shouldn’t we feel this way?  This, THIS is what I fear, losing the chance to get back in there and doing stuff that I can do.  Not unemployment, losing the ability to make it all work.  Today I was spending some of my Sunday working out how to deploy Puppet to improve system configuration management; this is after working out some rescue functions, which leads down a rabbit hole that I don’t want to follow…

[Image credit to Jamie Mckelvie, from Phonogram Singles Club]

Could Canadian “Tea Party” folks be far behind?

For those of us who cannot affored to travel to the United States for private health care are left with only one choice, the government’s health care. And when you only have one choice, you really have no choice whatsoever.

Let’s dissect this notion as it presented:

  1. For those of us who cannot afford to travel to the United States for private health care…So, if there was Private health care in Canada you imagine you could afford it?  The last time I checked the cost of a flight into the USA was the gas to cross the border then 99 bucks on southwest to pretty much anywhere.  So minus those 300 or so dollars the rest of the (20 to 30 thousand dollars) are totally in reach?
  2. The Government’s health careChosen by an elected government and easily changed by wide complaint.  When the people (as a majority) are unhappy those folks in Ottawa are fairly quick to react as public opinion really does shape policy.
  3. When you can only have one choice…
    See point one; if someone cannot afford the new special private tier” they are stuck with the public (possibly underfunded due to the Private Clinics stealing funds from the public coffers like they do in the States) system anyway, how is that more “fair”.
Face it; with few exceptions, ensuring that every Canadian has access to the same level of care is at least more equitable than allowing the more affluent to bypass the line.  There’s nothing like a Queue to level the playing field.
Photo Credit to Ivy Dawned