piranha: cartoon beaver with canada leaf jersey and hockey stick (i am canehdian)
i would kindly invite mr preston manning to come to BC next to help us finish off our conservatives.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
from avaaz.org:

As the world mounts a desperate effort to stop catastrophic global warming in Copenhagen, Canada should be leading the way. Instead, we're receiving global "fossil awards" for wrecking this crucial summit! And new leaked documents show that while the entire world is increasing cuts to carbon emissions, the government is secretly planning roll back ours.

At the Bali climate summit in 07, a massive national outcry forced Harper to stop blocking the talks. But the oil companies that PM Harper works for know that Copenhagen is the make or break moment for climate. It will not be easy to win this time, but to save the planet and our country we have to.

Let's mount a tidal wave of pressure on Harper with the largest petition in Canadian history - click below to sign:


if you're not a member of avaaz yet, and you care about global issues such as climate change, poverty, human rights, you might want to sign up for their alerts. they keep track of what's going on better than i could, and they've never spammed me with unrelated stuff.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
Todd Stern, the Obama administration's chief climate negotiator, said Thursday that he "categorically reject[s]" the suggestion that rich industrial countries owe compensation to the victims of climate change. Stern acknowledged that the emissions of rich nations over the past two hundred years of industrialization had caused global warming, telling a press conference, "We absolutely recognize our historic role in putting emissions in the atmosphere." But, Stern added, "the sense of guilt or culpability or reparations--I just categorically reject that."

more at alternet.

responsibility? we don't haz it.

i'm looking at you too, stephen harper.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
Canadian authorities are asking a court to rule that Canada's 19th-century anti-polygamy law — which provides five years in prison for polygamy or for living in a polygamous-like household or relationship, or for attending a group-marriage-like ceremony — is legal and enforceable today.

The long-forgotten law criminalizes most of today's poly households in Canada. In response, organizers of the Vancouver polyamory group VanPoly are seeking Canadian polyamorists to file written affadavits, and/or speak at an upcoming hearing, on whether the law should be enforced or struck down as a violation of Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

call for action and background information.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
those of us who have it hate it! or not. instead we seem to actually be fairly realistic about its benefits and shortcomings.

canadians overwhelmingly support universal health care; think obama is on right track in US. (pdf from nanos research.)

The survey found that nine in ten Canadians support universal health care (90% support or somewhat support), and seven out of ten Canadians believe that President Barack Obama is on the right track with respect to health care in the US (71%). Results were consistent across regions.

When asked what they believed was the key strength of the current Canadian health care system, six in ten said, unprompted, it was accessibility and universality (61%). The key weakness identified, unprompted, was wait times (33%), a more than two-to-one margin over the next most cited weakness - a shortage of doctors and nurses (14%).

When asked to look south of the border to the US, the majority of Canadians felt that President Obama was on the right track when it came to making changes to the health care system in the United States (71%) with only seven percent saying he was on the wrong track. One in five were unsure (21%). Quebecers were comparatively more likely to say Obama was on the right track (82%), followed by Ontarians (74% right track).

i should add that the wait times are for non-urgent care problems. the paramour's mother waited too long (in my book) for a hip replacement. but when i had life-threatening high blood pressure and tachycardia, i was immediately seen at the ER, ushered past a waiting room with other people. i've also always been able to see my GP when i needed to. and all that costs a mere C$54/month for british columbians (and if you can't afford that there is help); nobody is dependent on an employer offering health insurance and spousal/dependent benefits; if you lose your job in a bad economy, you don't also lose your health care (i find that incredibly frightening).

having lived under both type of systems, i greatly prefer universal, single-payer health care. and i don't at all mind paying taxes to support such care for people who have less than i do. i like living in a society that cares about all its members, whether they're currently fortunate and able-bodied or not.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
ACTA = Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement

we need a global DMCA like we need a hole in the head. we also don't need to make ISPs responsible for their users' copyright violations, and for sure we don't need service providers to proactively police for them -- that'll just about close down sites like youtube and flickr; nevermind blogger, livejournal, and dreamwidth.

dear white house: transparency? you promised, didn't you?

what's with the freaking secrecy about the copyright treaty then? how is this in any way a national security issue?

or are you just trying to hide what an execrable piece of shite this is for anyone but the RIAA, MPAA and large corporations jealously guarding their copyright way beyond what copyright law was ever intended to do? anti-counterfeiting? where are china and russia in these talks? no, this is instead pushing copyright even further than you've already pushed it.

- michael geist has info on ACTA.
- IDG news service has some more.
- so does numerama (in french)
the EFF chimes in.
- and lawfont in australia.
- needless to say, cory doctorow is unhappy.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
seems like harper is looking to bail out the big 3 automakers here in canada. man, that must make his little, stony, "the free market is god" heart go into arrythmia.

what's with the $6 billion price tag for that bailout? they're asking for $14 billion in the US, and our car-manufacturing sector is what, 1/10th of that of the US? hello! and say, what's the plan? what will we get for those $6 billion? anyone?

also, parliament is prorogued. GM claims it's going bankrupt even as we speak, within days. how is this going to get done?

i can smell a huge deficit coming our way. ah, conservative governments.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)

turn the leaves into unrecognizable red lumps. they're caused by manzanita leafgall aphids, tamalia coweni. i know very little about plant diseases, but i can google with the best of them.

thinking of diseases brings me to harper, a gall on the body politic.

harper is less smart than i thought. his lashing out against the "separatists" in the coalition will likely set him back in quebec in the long run. i don't understand what he's thinking; maybe his ego is really that large? he miscalculated, first with calling an election, and then with pushing the opposition to the tipping point by adding insult to injury in threatening their funding on top of the usual blackmail he's served them up by making every vote a vote of confidence. i would have thought once they called his bluff was a good time for some conciliation, and actual statesmanship in governing, but no, he's barrelling right along as if he had a huge mandate.

what hybris. 37.6% is no mandate. it means you need to consider the opposition in your lawmaking, because that's what the people have decided.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)

from left to right: jack layton (NDP), stéphane dion (LIB), gilles duceppe (BQ). (i stole the picture from the CBC because it is such a pretty sight. sorry, CBC!)

today the liberals and new democrats signed an agreement to form a coalition government, with a written pledge of support from the bloc québécois.

if harper decides to prorogue the government, i hope the governor general stands up to him. and that he gets run out of town on a rail.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
up your nose with a rubber hose.

first you blackmail the opposition by making everything a confidence vote, and now, when they finally call your bluff, you cancel the opportunity.

ghod, you are slime incarnate.

dear michaëlle jean, let us have a liberal/NDP coalition with BQ support. i am getting all excited -- leftie coalition government! yeah, yeah, it'll be less stable than the ocean floor around vanuatu, but it'll be interesting to watch. also, with fewer conservative policy makers chipping away at our rights, yay.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)

the good news: the paramour is home; fog did not interfere.

the mediocre news: the reformatories won the federal election, and gained seats to boot. the only thing that keeps this from being really bad news is that at least they did not win a majority government.

our riding did not fuck up, it voted NDP as usual (though they lost a little). and the conservatives gained a bit. the greens gained a bit more, and the liberals lost a lot (as did the marxist leninists).

the ABC (anything but conservative) campaign in NL seems to have worked. we might have to look towards something like that in BC as well.

it was overall a lousy outcome for the liberals, and a pretty good one for the greens, and the NDP -- looks like edmonton-strathcona might go to them; the sole spot of hope in alberta! (linda duncan lead by 0.9% last i checked -- oh, and CBC? please not to be calling ridings prematurely. that sucked. kthxbye.)

au revoir, stéphane dion. who's next?
piranha: red origami crane (Default)

don't know which cultivar since there are about a gazillion. i remember when dahlias were those big, stiff balls, and i thought them boring. but these days there are a lot that i like, mostly single and collarette variants. i wouldn't grow this particular one; it's not a colour combination i like -- but it looked nicely dramatic,

rain rain rain. i mostly slept, read, and worked in lightroom. i also got a beta copy of photoshop CS4, which is very different from CS2.

the news for the reformatories today wasn't good: the federal parliamentary budget officer released his report on the projected cost of the war in afghanistan, and it's more than double what the reformatories have been telling us -- pretty much what a couple of other sources have said recently.

he also said said it’s impossible to come up with an accurate number because there are many variables and not all the government departments involved have provided enough information. and he warned that the figures are so ill-defined that the war might threaten the government's long-term budget projections as expected surpluses decrease.

ah yes, these "conservatives" are so good for our wallets. (nevermind the other problems with being this involved with a war on foreign soil, a war the US mostly pissed away after getting us involved.)
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
a skit by québecois artists to denounce the cuts in cultural funding by the conservative government (you can turn on english subtitles, but it's absolutely delicious in french).

via rick mercer.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
the campaign has barely started and already we have a pile of gaffes:

- harper threatened to boycott the leaders debate if green party leader elizabeth may was allowed to participate, then flip-flopped after public outrage.

- harper had to apologize for a sophomoric website ad showing a bird pooping on liberal leader stephane dion.

- the conservatives had to admit that a halifax candidate resigned after it was learned she had a criminal record.

- the conservative party had to suspend communications director ryan sparrow over a partisan snipe at a dead soldier's father.

- the conservative campaign violated copyright by not seeking permission to use footage from the TVO network for the fashioning of attack ads (which they would not have gotten).

keep at it. 27% of voters undecided in the latest nanos poll.
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
until october 14. we're having an election. *sigh*. so much for harper's promise of a fixed election date [1] -- typical reforma-tory -- keep promises only for as long as they're good for oneself. when there are ethics investigations, and an ailing economy, and a dem lead in the US elections, then we apparently don't need no stinking fixed election date. for 2.5 years we've seen mr "open and transparent government" be the most secretive and evasive prime minister that i can remember.

i'm _really_ worried about a conservative majority government. i hope canadians realize that the only reason we've not gone along the same road the republican handbasket is careening down in the US, is that a minority government is limited in its power.

and i hope people don't forget that stephen harper wanted to take us into the iraq war in 2003. heck, most of us want us out of afghanistan; can you imagine the mess if we were stuck in iraq?

our C$12 billion surplus is gone even without that involvement. the economy is slumping; manufacturing isn't doing so good.

harper doesn't give a fuck about the environment.

i want him gone. he's bad for canada.

[1] and wait, don't we have a law for that now? how's he weaseling around that? the bill is here; need to ferret out more info. canada elections act.

legal stuff )
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i am not doing the best i can myself, but at least i am ashamed of it and endeavour to improve, which is more than can be said for prime minister stephen harper.

if you are embarrassed by how he's consistently putting corporate interests ahead of environmental ones, and how he's representing canada in regard to climate change, and if you would like to see canada pick itself up from its bottom of the barrel position on this issue, please consider signing this petition put together by avaaz.

you don't need to be canadian to sign.
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if i just went by watching the mercer report, i'd now want bob rae to win the liberal leadership.

i mean, how can you not want a guy there who jumps butt-naked into a lake in killarney in autumn, right after talking calmly about how silly it is that right-wing ideologues make a big deal over same sex marriage?
piranha: red origami crane (Default)
condoleezza rice. and your bully-boy boss too.

it may be good enough for our limp conservative government that you claim you're committed to informing ottawa now before you deport canadian citizens to other countries to be tortured, but it's not good enough for me. your assurances are worthless. you broke your own laws when you did that to maher arar; why should a letter on white house stationary have more weight? nevermind that the moment you open your lips these days it's to lie. you spent your political capital several times over by lying with impunity. damn right you're gonna do it again if it comes in handy, unless you're made to pay severely.

and i don't see an apology. nor a statement that you've taken maher arar off your stupid watchlist.

fuckers. i so want to see you criminals impeached. in fact, i'd like to see you jailed. but you've already legislated yourself to safety, haven't you.

and you, mackay, you are a pitiful piece of milquetoast.

p.s: dear globe and mail. have a copy editor check the spelling of the names of foreign "dignitaries" before publishing. yeah, it's a damnfool way of spelling her name, but it's her damnfool way.


piranha: red origami crane (Default)
renaissance poisson

July 2015

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