Friday, October 26, 2007


It was reported earlier this week that the PM and his thrown er. throne speech drafters were trying out a new rhetorical motto now that the 'tired-since-it-was-first-used' moniker of 'Canada's new government' has FINALLY been taken out of circulation. The new moniker is that Canada should be to the world as the Northern Star is to sailors...

However, upon reading up on this North Star business I found this a very curious coincidence....

Not to mention this excerpt from Hansard which is probably THE BEST description of the current government I have yet heard

"Hon. Anita Neville (Winnipeg South Centre, Lib.): ...

Like an astrologer, the Prime Minister claims to be guided by the North Star. Will he admit that ... he is indeed like the North Star: cold, unmovable, distant and not too bright? "

Yeah.. I really think the Northern Star moniker has a real future as being even more successful than the widely loved 'new government'...

Guys... really... NO!



Tuesday, October 23, 2007


He shouldn't have won. It degrades the entire Nobel franchise. His work was not peace related nor was any great feat of peace achieved by him. Secondly, it is little known that Sheila Watt-Cloutier, a long time climate campaigner, head of the Inuit Circumpolar Council and a Canadian was originally co-nominated with Gore. She can at least claim to have worked for the peace and security of the inuit in the face of climatic impacts. She was denied so that an organization... AN ORGANIZATION! could share the prize with GORE.

TO hell with Gore and the Nobel geezers.



PS and I say this a as strong proponent of action on climate change and as someone who has worked in the feild for some time. This is crap.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

'World War III'

A perfect example of how not calm an already unstable situation.

One more example of the intellectual and political weight of the current US administration.

January 2009... its only 14.5 months away! HURRAY!



Tuesday, October 16, 2007


The Liberals are in disarray, the NDP is so out of touch with reality its not even funny, the Greens are not yet in a real position to do anything useful and the Conservative government is putting this country back 30 years except for afghanistan.

The opposition should vote against this speech.

Another percentage off the GST is the wrong way to go. Cutting our consumption tax is a stupid thing to do. This country needs INCOME TAX relief not a reduction in the tax that brought us out of deficit.

The abdication of federal responsibility in the area of 'provincial jurisdiction' is just shocking. To a constitutional literalist limited federal spending in provincial areas could include no more federal money for health care or environmental programs. The federal government needs to be doing more to create similar standards across provinces not allow them to act ever more willy nilly with no connection to the national interest.

Lastly, the government has ONCE AGAIN declared that it intends to knowingly violate international law by not even attempting to implement the Kyoto Protocol targets.




Tuesday, October 09, 2007


During this year's Ontario election, voters will also be asked to vote on a referendum to change our electoral system from our traditional 'first past the post' system to one that provides for some Members of Provincial Parliament to be 'elected' based on the percentage of votes their party has received.

While I do not deny that the first past the post system has problems (truly no one should be 'elected' with 26% of the vote, etc, just because they have 'more' votes than anyone else, as can happen in some ridings), the MMP system does not really solve any of the overarching problems with accountability and electoral governance it just introduces new ones.

The first past the post system suffers from legitimacy concerns because it is based on electing the candidate who has the most votes in any one riding even if that candidate comes away with a very low percentage of actual vote. Again, someone winning a seat to represent an entire riding, even if that represents the will of well less than half of voters in that riding is clearly a problem.

However the proposed MMP system wants to change our system to the following:
How it works

Mixed-Member Proportional (MMP) is very simple - one ballot, two votes:

you vote for the local candidate of your choice
you vote for the political party of your choice

You can vote for a local candidate from a different party if you prefer. The "local candidate vote" determines which candidate will represent your district, just like now. The "party vote" determines what share of all the seats each party will receive.

Under the new MMP system The provincial legislature will shrink to 90 riding MPPs and 39 at-large MPPs who represent their party's 'percentage' of the popular vote.

This system is fatally flawed and does not help democracy. Why?

1. MMP shrinks the number of riding MPPs to 90. This means that ridings will have to be enlarged leading to MPPs that will have to serve a larger territory and represent a larger number of voters leading to increasingly impersonal service by your MPP.

2. MMP allocates 39 seats to 'popular percentage' MPPs who represent no one. Because the 39 seats will be allocated based on popularity not territory or population those MPPs are not accountable to any constituency and no one group of people will have voted them in.

Who are these people accountable to? No one but their Party and a provincial election statistic. That is not democracy. Since statistics cannot hold opinions it means the extra percentage MPPs will only exist to do the will of their party and not the citizens of Ontario. This is NOT democracy.

Due to this I would urge every voter who actually wants improvements in our voting system to VOTE NO to the MMP system of voting. We should ask Elections Ontario (and not some unofficial and partisan interest group) to go back to the drawing board to find the most equitable and democratic form of elections and resubmit a number of options, not just ONE option, to the people of Ontario.

Personally I would like to see a system where a candidate needs at least over 50% of the vote to win a riding. Should any candidate not achieve this, then a run off would be held between the top two candidates.

This in my view is the most equitable and democratic way of deciding who represents a riding.



Tuesday, October 02, 2007

HOLY CRAP! This is the best thing I've seen in months!

From Britain's 'Daily Mail' newspaper.

"Prepare for battle, it's the paintball panzer tankLast updated at 11:59am on 2nd October 2007
The team-bonding game of paintballing is about to get a whole lot more serious - after mini-tanks were invented to go into battle.

The Paintball Panzer tank will give office workers the chance to exact the ultimate revenge on their shell-shocked bosses when it takes to the battlefield.
The one-manned machine runs on a Honda petrol engine and is armed with a 2ft gun that has the capability to pepper the opposition with 15 rounds of paint per second.
Scroll down for more...

Ready, aim, fire: The Paintball Panzer fires up to 15 paint balls a second
The 9,000 pounds tank, which is 3ft tall and 7ft long, has dual caterpillar tracks to manoeuvre through woodland, ditches and rough terrain.

It has been launched to give the war game - introduced to Britain 25 years ago and popular for corporate events and stag dos - a radical revolution.

Just like in the theatre of war, its inventors say the tank will provide the infantry paintballers with armoured cover when they take on rival teams.

Paintballing centres across Britain are being advised to buy the pocket tanks in pairs to make games more fairer.

Ron Francis, of Funtrak Ltd based in Blackpool, Lancs, said: "We have trialled it out at a few
paintballing centres and every single player had a huge grin on their face.

On the attack: The one-manned machine runs on a Honda petrol engine and is armed with a 2ft gun

"Everybody wanted a go on it, they loved it. It takes paintballing to a whole new level and gives it fresh excitement.

"It allows armour to enter the simulated combat arena for the first time. "It can be used to spearhead a frontal assault or as armour to protect infantry.
"Its gives workers the opportunity to take revenge on their bosses in great style.
"Being hit by one paintball hurts but can you image the pain of being struck 15 times a second?
"Alternatively, the gun can be set to scattergun effect which enables it to take out several players in one go."

The tank, which has a fibreglass, camouflage shell, was invented by former RAF engineer Philip Parsons who built one for his own personal use.

He then got he idea to make a business out of it and turned to Mr Francis, 52, who is now selling the tanks.

During a 20 minute game, the tank can by put out of action if it is struck in a particular spot a set number of times.

A marshall keeping count on the number of hits has the ability to cut off the engine with a remote control if, for example, it is struck 10 times on its front.

It also comes complete with a two-way radios so drivers on the same team can communicate to one another.

Mr Francis said: "People think there is a quad bike underneath the shell but it is a tank.
"It has been designed from the ground up and has hydraulic drive and caterpillar tracks. It is steered using two levers just like a normal tank.
"Obviously because it is miniature, the driver's head in exposed so there is a roll-bar to protect you if it overturns.
"Philip Parsons designed and built one for his own personal use and people saw it and asked where he got it from.
"We have turned his idea and hobby around and made it into a business.
"The Panzer has a number of barrel attachments, so you can fit all sorts of guns on top of it, from a normal paintball gun and a water-cannon."

Mr Francis said that as well as paintballing, the tank can be fitted with an electronic Laser Tag gun, which is similar to paintballing but because it is infrared technology it doesn't hurt when you get hit.

The Panzer tank can also be classed as a motor vehicle and be public highway, as long as it has a number plate and road tax. "