Friday, July 28, 2006

Today in history - - - July 28

1945 - An Army B-25 bomber lost in the fog crashed into the side of the Empire State Building in New York City, killing 13 people.

The Empire State building did NOT fall down.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Vigilante justice

All across Canada it is well known that the law abiding citizens are fed up with judicial justice. Having the worst criminals walking through courtrooms like McDonalds' Drive-thrus is about to be unacceptible. Our children and our future are at stake.
Drug dealers now frequent the corners of every major city in Canada as well as most of the small towns. The people know who they are. The police know who they are. Vancouver was even written up recently in a British tourist magazine as being infested with homeless beggars and drug dealers everywhere. People cautioned about coming here. Not a good thing for 2010.
Yet it goes on and on. People have been calling for tougher sentences for years, to a deaf ear of the justice system. To a deaf ear of the judges who seem to care more for the perpetrators than the victims.
Finally in one small community in New Brinswick it went too far and the people took action against these insidious criminals who were addicting their children to crack cocaine, among other lethal drugs. They burned down a crack house and prevented the fire department from putting it out. And they beat the bad guys badly enough to force them to leave their island.
It was vigilante justice well done. Applauded across the country by frustrated parents everywhere. Something they surely have wanted to do.
It had to start somewhere. Those New Brunswickers say the purge of drug dealers in their community isn't over yet.
Maybe the purge of drug dealers in Canada is just beginning.

Back to Top

Jamie Graham - in context?

It seems like a lot of the media is now selling a better story than the real story. The 'target' story is growing by the hour and now Vancouver Police Chief Jamie Graham is supposedly 'under investigation' for a threat. This is great stuff for the media. Or is it?
Chief Jamie Graham admits he left a shooting range target sheet on the desk of a city manager with a note saying "a bad day at the range is better than the best day at work." Now it is being reported that the target had hits in the head and heart.
But when that target sheet was shown on TV, the only two hits on the sheet were WAY off the center, and at the very outside edge. Showing clearly that it was a bad day at the shooting range.
If it had been a picture of Chief Graham falling off water skis, with that same comment, it would have simply said that the water skiing pastime, even while falling in, is still better than a sweaty day at the office.
One wonders if the media likes their manufactured controversial story with a political bent much better than the facts. Isn't it an obligation of the news media to get it EXACTLY right?
Take another look at that target before buying into media stuff.

UPDATE: Now CKNW's Bill Good is reporting that target as "bullet riddled", nice going Bill, has a way better media pull than what it really was. Damn, you used to be able to trust 'NW. The next thing they'll tell us is that the desk was shot up too!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Today in history - - - July 24

1989 - The Exxon Corp. estimated that its cleanup of the Alaskan oil spill would cost $1.28 billion.

Understandably, they said they would have to raise their gas pump prices to cover the costs.

NOT understandably, Shell, Chevron and all the others ALSO raised their prices, even though they had NO costs at all. Is there better evidence that oil companies were gouging us even then?

Thursday, July 20, 2006

WWE - RAW rasslin' at its best

Apparantly TSN is forsaking WWE RAW (rasslin', I can't bring myself to say wrestling) because it got NFL Monday Night Football instead. Good for credibility. Broadcasting RAW, in spite of its ratings, leaves a sports fan wondering what they are thinking?
I watched a RAW event one time a few years ago. (I was innocently flicking past, really) I forget who the actors were, but there were a couple of things of interest. Although probably only to a teenager who just torched his cat for fun. They had this steroid muscle guy come in toward the ring at the end of a huge ramp through smoke and purple lights while his opponent waited. The approaching purple guy joked about going to visit his opponent's father in the hospital who was suffering from cancer! He went on to say that he was glad the man's father had cancer and he even stole the old man's watch while he lay helpless! (NOT kidding) Then when the other man erupts in (fake) rage and runs up the ramp, our purple guy finds a hammer somewhere and slams him in the head with it! (please, this is true) Out cold. All to frenzied cheers and jeers!
Then in another 'match'. One guy is rasslin' for pride? He volunteers to put his 'hos' up for the prize! He parades these slutty dressed women into the ring, about 8 of them if I recall. He lost to the challenger who took possession of the 'hos' and paraded them off to a harem room somewhere. Assuming that some ex-steriod eunuch rassler would be looking after them of course.
All this went on before screaming teenaged boys. (I guess they screened them all to make sure no boy had a father in hospital with cancer) Of course all this stuff wouldn't influence adolescents' attitudes toward women or violence. No.
Well I can't blame the actors/rasslers from taking part in this. Most of these guys would be back at the gas station, stealing cars or raising pit bulls without this employment.
I think it is Mr. McMahon (as he prefers to be called, striving for respectability. No one ever calls Vince 'Vinnie'.) who controls it all. Even to the extent of suppressing film footage showing the rasslers rehearsing their lines. And he makes sure it is delayed one hour to edit out any of the clear misses of forearm smashes and foot stomps to the head. To be fair Mr. McMahon even calls them 'scenes'.
Its Jerry Springer on steroids. ( at least Jerry admits it's all a big joke)
Ah, violence at its best.
But nothing to do with sports.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Rescue - Why?

Is there any real reason that the Canadian government should charter ships to go into a war zone to rescue as many as 20,000 'Canadians'? Since when did we have an obligation to collect people who chose to go there for 'vacations' or other reasons? This is not Dunkirk.
On closer examination would we find that these Canadian citizens are carrying Canadian passports of convenience? Are they Lebanese who have come to Canada, bought their citizenship, and immediately returned to their home country for whatever reason?
In most cases of stress in countries a government warns their citizens to stay away from dangerous areas. In the case of Lebanon, this has been ongoing since 1975! So if they have returned to do business for whatever reasons, the Canadian taxpayer should make no effort to rescue these people. Lebanese Canadians should simply go north, out of the potential danger zone and leave the country at their own expense.
Having them on radio and television criticizing our efforts is ridiculous and insolent. They should stay here at their chosen home or tough out the situation wherever they are. Canada needs to review its process of doling out passports to people who do not embrace Canada as a place to live a privileged life. If it is your new home, come here to contribute, not to have a safe base.
Canada, love it or leave it, but don't use it.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

We told you so ...

David Emerson signed the softwood lumber deal with the US. ONLY Emerson and Harper are supposedly happy with it. It could be because Harper wants it settled when he visits President Bush soon?
The BC Government sent Emerson it's concerns that the deal was NOT in British Columbia's interests. In plently of time for him to be aware. He should have been keyed on BC needs anyway. There were four major items we were unhappy with. Emerson went ahead and signed a bad deal. The American lumber lobby against Canada gets to keep one BILLION dollars of our money.
BC is the largest lumber producer in Canada. Emerson told us how effective he could be for British Columbians when he crossed over from the Liberals in his lust for power. Emerson is from BC. Everyone said how good he would be for BC.
Sure. Some believed it.
We didn't. Check out our previous comments.
David Emerson, like many BC MPs before him, became a traitor to his home province. Sucking up to Harper and the Americans for his illusions of grandeur. David will say, we had to get some kind of deal. No we didn't, we had one called NAFTA.
We told you so ...

UPDATE: Alberta has now joined with British Columbia and Quebec in showing its dissatisfaction with the lumber deal and threatening legal action against it. Makes one wonder just what Emerson was up to or whether he even communicated with anyone?

Monday, July 03, 2006

Our peregrine is back

We live in downtown Vancouver. We used to face south looking toward False Creek. One day we noticed a Peregrine Falcon using another highrise building as a hunting vantage point and we began watching him for hours. Almost every day. Sometimes striking off the ledge and disappearing in a flash of wings, at other times returning with a pigeon meal. And he'd stay on the ledge to dine. He wasn't nesting up there but possibly somewhere close by. One time we even saw two of them on the same rooftop ledge, but only that once.
Then a construction of three new highrises at Hamilton and Smythe and our peregrine disappeared.

We moved within the building and now faced south, looking out toward Burrard Inlet from near Robson Street. The other day I saw something soaring just over the top of the Vancouver Library building offices. Thinking a young Eagle without the white plumage. No, not large enough. Perhaps a Red-Tailed Hawk. I have seen one passing unhurriedly through the city in overlapping circles. No, the tail was too long and no red. Peregrines don't often soar. I have even seen a couple of black Turkey Vultures visiting from Grouse or Seymour mountain or Simon Fraser, casually checking out the city. And occassionally a Raven braves the ire of crows to get where he's going.
The bird suddenly folded his wings and dropped quickly but quit after a second or two. I knew he was 'our' falcon right away. His prey had taken cover.

I followed his flight with binoculars and he took a high position on the red S of the Scotia bank building. Spent time preening, then peering at whatever far below. Then he was gone.
I was thrilled to see him again. If he's the same one. Or she.
So look upward once in a while and you might catch a glimpse of one of the most magnificent birds to ever grace a sky. Right here in downtown Vancouver. If you do, watch him for a while, even be late getting back to work. Some things are worth it.