This simply cannot be good for our troops that are now caught up in the middle of this. The new threat comes after an incident involving an American convoy crashing into Afghani civilians sparked widespread anti-American riots...
In the 12-minute tape, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar also issues a direct threat to U.S. Lt. Gen. Karl Eikenberry, the commander of the Combined Forces Command in Afghanistan. Addressing Eikenberry by name, Hekmatyar urges the general to stay in Afghanistan. “It is easier for us to kill you here than to travel all the way to America to do it,” Hekmatyar warns.
The situation in the Middle East is only going to get worse. The Afghan government wants charges laid against the US soldiers responsible for the accident that triggered the worst riots in the country since the initial invasion and occupation...
This could be every guitar shredder's dream, and if he had two heads, I would consider calling him Zaphod... Of course, having a third arm could be useful in many more ways than just guitar!
However, the two month old boy in Shanghai may have to undergo surgery to remove the particularly well-developed third arm. Neither of the two left arms is fully functional so that sort of dashes any home of rockstardom... This does present the problem of trying to decide which arm is more developed...
Vernon Wells hit 3 homers and Troy Glaus hit 2 to lead the Jays to their second win in the series against division leading Boston. The boys are off to a great start now, and after dumping Towers to the minors, look to improve on their record... Toronto has a team batting average of .300, leading the majors, and are second with 75 homers, third with 275 RBI and first with hits at 528.
Jan 2001: After the Nov 2000 elections, US intelligence agencies are told to “back off” investigating the bin Ladens and Saudi royals. There have always been constraints on investigating Saudi Arabians. [BBC, 11/6/01, more]
May 2001: For the third time, US security chiefs reject Sudan’s offer of thick files on bin Laden and al-Qaeda. A senior CIA source calls it “the worst single intelligence failure in the business.” [Guardian, 9/30/01, more]
Sept 10, 2001: “Newsweek has learned a group of top Pentagon officials suddenly canceled travel plans for the next morning, apparently because of security concerns.” [Newsweek, 9/24/01, more]
Sept 11, 2001: Described as a bizarre coincidence, a US intelligence agency was all set for an exercise on Sept 11th at 9:00 AM in which an aircraft would crash into one of its buildings near Washington, DC. [AP, 8/22/02, more]
Sept 11, 2001: Hours after the attacks, a “shadow government” is formed. Key congressional leaders say they didn’t know this government-in-waiting had been established. [CBS, 3/2/02, Washington Post, 3/2/02, more]
May 17, 2002: Dan Rather says that he and other journalists haven’t been properly investigating since 9/11. He graphically describes the pressures to conform that built up after the attacks. [Guardian, 5/17/02, more]
Whether it is the preparedness shown by government officials cancelling flights on the morning of 9/11 or the removal of all fighter planes from anywhere in a useful radius of the attacks beforehand, or the testing and simulations covering exactly what happened long before, this video (and evidence) is compelling to say the least.
Before all of the neo-con puppets start saying that a government would never kill their own people, wake up. If it gets them the New American Century as developed by forthright guys like Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, John Bolton, Paul Wolfowitz and many others... then what is to stop them?
Again, I question our role in Afghanistan, and I question our new government for the choices they are making that mirror developments in post 9/11 USA.
More sensational news from CTV... Terrorists potentially lurking in Canada...
Yeah. Maybe we should build some secret prisons and just start detaining people indefinately...
Our involvement in the "War on Terror" is getting deeper and I am starting to feel ill. The minute I hear H-Dawg say we are "at war", I will puke. Last I heard, Canada hasn't declared war on anyone, never mind an ideology...
It would seem that the load on my server for my painting site has exceeded my bandwidth limits, and sadly, many of the pictures and features on my blog are hosted there. In an effort to alleviate some of this stress, I have opened a photobucket account and changed a lot of the photos to it to help save space (not to mention they were not displaying anyways...).
If there are other big issues with images let me know. I can do nothing about my songs or and videos I have on here at present, unless there is a free host for such things as mp3 and avi files.
Thanks for your patience :D
*** UPDATE ***
It is looking like I will be needing a new web host. I have been graciously hosted by Chaosmailorder.com but they are not getting much traffic from my advertisement and the demands on their free hosting are getting to the point that they cannot continue to host my site for free any longer. They have offered a deal but I believe I can likely get a better deal elsewhere.
This week, I have chosen a different blog to feature, Wonderland or not. This is a provocative blog with many topics, including a deep passion for the crisis in Darfur, and the treatment of women around the world.
"New site for Wonderland or Not. A some time personal blog of a NYC college student. This blog contains personal, political, social, humorous and sexual commentary. Started on blogspot in November of 2004 this will be the permanent site."
Yesterday was great at work. Normally, I never get out of the office, but I had to go and have a good look at several road jobs I am designing, so one of our Engineers and I went down to the Three Hills area for the day. It's great to get out, even if only a few times a year.
We saw this ramshackle and aged farm building alongside the old windmill, and I thought it would be a great pic to snap... These buildings are dotted all over the countryside, and stand (sometimes leaning at crazed angles) as a testament to the great history that built our province and country...
In a brilliant but long overdue move, the Jays sent Josh Towers down to the minors... I was wondering why he was still int he rotation with a 1 and 4 record, but they let him go until last night. He had a 1 and 8 record, with an ERA of 9.00 and finally, after only 1.2 innings and 4 more earned runs, he was gone. Jays manager John Gibbons had a reliever warming up after only 12 pitches last night, as he had absolutely no faith left in his starter.
My question is why it took them so long? In the American East division, with the Yankees and Red Sox, you have really got to win games to stay in the race. I think almost any Joe could beat a 1-8 (really a 1-9) record... A few of those games being wins under another pitcher could mean a tie with the Yankees, or even a better record...
I say good riddance Towers... have fun in Syracuse.
I am sure everyone heard about the two dozen reporters that left Harper's latest press conference because he refused to answer their questions... What would you do? I would leave too. Now, all I hear about is him whining about how rough the press is on him.
Well let's step back and have a look at what you have done Harps...
Since attaining the throne, the Tory government has removed cameras from the Parliament, banned press from the arrival ceremonies of fallen soldiers, muzzled MPs, hand picked only "friendly" press representatives to attend press conferences and only allowing questions from "favorable" members of the media.
Do you think that maybe the rest of the press will be a little pissed off? The secrecy doesn't create an environment that will only make this worse as time goes on? So now, H-Dawg is going to avoid the national media, since they are obviously biased against him and his secretive Cabinet.
"They don't ask questions at my press conferences now."
Yeah, because they aren't allowed twit...
According to the Prime Minister's Office, Harper is trying to install some order to news scrums by choosing who gets to ask questions. The parliamentary press gallery is concerned Harper is trying to freeze out journalists and news organizations he dislikes.
I have never believed in the principles behind "The War on Terror" nor have I believed in any of the lies that led to the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq. After 9-11, I always thought about Afghanistan a little differently, but after reading an article in The Tyee by Murray Dobbin, I have decided to change my position completely.
In a nutshell, I believe Iraq was invaded for resources. I thought Afghanistan was different, but just this excerpt alone, really makes me wonder (emphasis mine)... In fact, I cannot believe I have not read this before...
"It is important also to revisit the original relationship between the US and the Taliban and the US invasion. The US poured millions into Taliban coffers until, says Margolis, about four months before 9/11. It was only cut off when the regime refused to sign a contract with US oil giant Unocal to build a pipeline south from the Caspian Basin to Pakistan. It is also surely relevant that the Taliban knew nothing of the plan to attack the US. (The plot was hatched in Germany.) Much was made of the fact that the Taliban refused to hand over Osama bin Laden to the US. But Bin Laden was a national hero wounded six times in the anti-Soviet struggle -- which the US financed. When the Taliban offered to turn him over to an international tribunal upon seeing evidence of his guilt in 9/11, the US refused. And then invaded. This was by any international legal standard a totally illegal war, which could only have been justified if Afghanistan threatened the US. It is also an illegal occupation."
So now we have a situation where I believe, the country was invaded, again under false pretense, and as I would oppose any Canadian involvement in Iraq beyond medical and other rebuilding efforts, I now oppose our involvement in Afghanistan. This is a big statement, but after much thought, I am willing to make it. Further research shows me that Unocal could not move forward with their plans after the invasion until a stable government was established.
"the new Afghan government's head, Hamid Karzai, formerly served as a UNOCAL consultant. Only nine days after Karzai's ascension, President Bush nominated another UNOCAL consultant and former Taliban defender, Zalmay Khalilzad, as his special envoy to Afghanistan."
Maybe I was attempting to hold on to some form of muddled logical thought regarding the 9-11 attacks and the "honorable" invasion of Afghanistan, but I should have known better...
The big problem now, is that Harper has created an environment where our MPs in Parliament have little choice (oh I know... a free vote and all that) but to have voted for the extension of our mission there lest they be labelled as "political game players" and other such nonsense. Our guys are there until early 2009 now, and NATO wants us to take the reigns in 2008... so I see no end to this mission, just as there is no end to the occupation in Iraq. So now what? Frankly, I can't believe I haven't read about this before, but it makes so much sense now.
I also see the numbers of people who believe that a terrorist attack on our soil is probable increase in my poll, specifically after the vote to extend our mission... Coincidence? Doubtful.
So we have to weigh some heavy things in our minds... Perhaps our troops are doing great things there right now, and the Afghans want us there to help, but by doing this, are we burying our heads in the sand with regard to what Big Brother south of us is doing? Is it worth cleaning up the mess everytime the US decides to invade another country for oil just because we are "doing good" after the fact? I don't think so. I think it's time they cleaned up their own mess.
It's noon on saturday of May long, and it's already been fun and productive...
It began last night, with a trip to the venders to fetch some Kiwi-Mango Vex and a crate of Canadian. I had downloaded a G3 concert yesterday, so I thought it would be cool to hunker down after some BBQ burgers and watch the show. It was really amazing actually, as it is a showcase for extraordinary guitar virtuosity. Joe Satriani played first, and as always, impresses with his technical skill and downright groovy tunes... "Mystical Potato Head Groove Thing" blew me away. After Joe, Steve Vai enters with a triple neck guitar and amazing performance. Yngwie "Love him or hate him" Malmsteen was the third virtuoso and once finished, all 3 jam on Neil Young's "Rockin in the Free World" and more... Really cool and it totally inspires me to play, though I just cut my palm on our metal roof right where the thumb attaches on my left hand, so I probably can't play...
Watched that with the boy too, which was cool as he has a hint of interest in learning the bass guitar. My wife and I hung out in our garage and played darts for a while after, and by the end of the night I was pretty loaded. I fell asleep watching a movie and that was that.
Already today, I was awakened by the sound of my wife starting the lawn mower, so up I got and right at it. Our neighbour just had a blood clot in his leg, and since he is older, we decided to mow his lawn as well. Gotta do one good deed a month!
Off to go bowling and BBQing for a friend's little guy's birthday!
Pretty busy at work today, so no bright insights, but it is strange that on the verge of calls from the United Nations Committee Against Torture to close down Gitmo and the other secret "War on Terror" prison facilities operated by the US, prisoners clashed with guards attempting to stop another prisoner from committing suicide. It was actually the 4th attempted suicide of the day...
I have to assume the US administration will *not* do the right thing...
As for the clashes, they are now reporting it was a set up by detainees... Interesting.
Last night, H-Dawg held his parliamentary debate and vote on the big issue of extending Canada's role in Afghanistan. Naturally, I was hoping that the vote would swing such that we could bring our troops home, especially after losing our first female soldier on duty over there. Don't get me wrong, one doesn't join the army without taking the risk of getting killed (it is in the job description) but perhaps this changed a few minds on the vote. Of course, the vote was very tight, and with the Bloc and NDP playing "political games" as Harper puts it, it passed with a 149 to 145 vote margin (like his own cabinet isn't playing political games... I wonder how many Tory MPs voted against this?)
Several things strike me as strange about this vote though... First, there was only a few days notice, and a brief 6 hour debate on the matter, which realistically affects thousands of Canadian soldiers for several years. Second it comes right when NATO has asked Canada to take the reigns in Afghanistan in 2008. It reeks of political maneuvering to me. What happens then? If we take over the mission and then pull out in a year? I doubt that would happen...
As for the two year extension? What will the mission develop into? I doubt anyone really knows. What happens when the next deadline draws near? Another extension? I doubt anyone really knows. I think this mission is important, though it is definately different than the typical peace-keeping stance we normally take. Is this taking troops and resources that could be used in other places like Darfur? I guess this means we won't be supporting the UN with peacekeepers there. As you can tell, I have more questions than answers, or maybe it is just this heat wave...
I begin to wonder though, if this is anything like Iraq, there may never be an end to it.
I am really starting to think that Canada should not be a part of Operation Enduring Freedom, as the scope of work is not a classic Canadian role in foreign affairs. After all, we are great peace keepers, and it seems very strange that we are hunting out terrorists, and blowing things up. Maybe we should not accept NATO's request, and stay on in a different role. That would be something I could relaly support. Of course I doubt H-Dawg would ever turn down something like that...
I believe this about as much as I believe Hussein had nukes to give to his buddy Osama...
They don't eavesdrop on "ordinary" americans... of course, peace activists, democrats, liberals, hippies, and almost anyone not from Texas say could possibly not be normal... The BS spewing from McChimpy gets thicker each day, and seems to correspond to increases in his unpolularity.
Of course, after the revelation that they were indeed illegally wiretapping domestic calls, and also collecting zillions of phone records, does he think anyone with half a cerebral cortex will believe him?
Blevkog has a great cartoon up... illustrates my line of thinking so that even a chimp could understand it...
An SEP or "Somebody Else's Problem" field is simply put, an energy field similar to an invisibility field. When somebody, or something, is surrounded by a SEP field, the human brain perceives it as "somebody else's problem", and therefore will be incapable of paying attention to the object (or even seeing it, or recognizing its existence) unless it is being specifically looked for.
This is basically what Stockwell Day, who is ironically the Minister of Public Safety, is going to do by scrapping the long gun registry. It will soon be the sole responsibility of the RCMP to keep track of who has what guns, and logically, this makes sense, though they are likely far too busy dealing with possession charges, and other things...
Don't get me wrong, the gun registry was FAR overbudget, and appears to have been managed as if by toddlers with no organizational skills whatsoever, but I would expect the oh-so-mighty Tories to actually come up with a more efficient way to deal with this, instead of placing the SEP field on the problem. For some reason, our Public Safety Minister doesn't think long guns pose a threat to society, even though Tony Cannavino of the Canadian Professional Police Association states that the last six or seven cops killed by guns were shot with long guns.
This is obviously a contentious issue, and there are a ton of differing viewpoints out there. Personally, I have no problems with the idea of registering a weapon if I ever wanted one. I don't profess to have solutions to make this system easier either, but there simply has to be a better way than scrapping it altogether.
As a hobbyist musician, I was eternally thankful to find a free site called Mysongbook.com and the Guitar Pro software that you use to read the music as tabbed by fans all over the world. To me, it is another extremely handy and friendly way that the internet helps out, especially amongst hobbyists like myself. This software shows you the music, the tablature, and *plays* it while you read and learn it. Very cool. Basically, a guy like me can listen to their favorite Priest song, write out all of the music score for guitars, bass, drums etc with the guitar pro software, and share it with thousands of other musicians around the world. Mindbogglingly useful if you ask me. However, it is suddenly not cool to tab out other band's music and share it...
Today I decided to go and check for some Alice in Chains tunes, and suddenly, I could not download the tabs anymore. There is a disclaimer on their front page that wasn't there last week.
"Providing some tabs - even made by ear - of copyrighted music is illegal. In order to respect the law, downloads have been limited to the [composition] and [competition] files..."
Fair enough... the greedy rock stars *do* have intellectual property rights to their recorded music. Sadly though, most bands have few, if any tabs at all available on their own sites. So now, not only does this effect musicians like me, but how about the company that sells Guitar Pro? How long before all of the tab sites on the web are shut down? How long before the FBI comes and takes me away for simply *playing* another artist's songs without permission in my garage?
I can understand how downloading Metallica's latest crap is copyright infringement and illegal. I can understand how recording and selling their crap without permission is copyright infringement... but this is crazy. Maybe it's just me and others can disagree, but if you haven't seen how slick guitar pro is, then you probably wouldn't understand. After all, guitar tab magazines don't have drums to play along with, and cds don't have the music to read...
For my Mom and all of the special mom's out there...
Times have changed and times are strange Here I come, but I ain’t the same Mama, I’m coming home Times gone by seem to be You could have been a better friend to me Mama, I’m coming home You took me in and you drove me out Yeah, you had me hypnotized Lost and found and turned around By the fire in your eyes You made me cry, you told me lies But I can’t stand to say goodbye Mama, I’m coming home I could be right, I could be wrong Hurts so bad, it’s been so long Mama, I’m coming home Selfish love yeah we’re both alone The ride before the fall But I’m gonna take this heart of stone I just got to have it all
I’ve seen your face a hundred times Everyday we’ve been apart I don’t care about the sunshine, yeah’cause mama, mama, I’m coming home I’m coming home
You took me in and you drove me out Yeah, you had me hypnotized Lost and found and turned around By the fire in your eyes
I’ve seen your face a hundred times Everyday we’ve been apart I don’t care about the sunshine, yeah’cause mama, mama, I’m coming home I’m coming home
Gee, good old H-Dawg and his tough as nails stance with Bush to broker the Softwood agreement may not be so rosy...
I mean, they *did* get back $4 billion of the $5 billion owed, and of course, they take their $1 billion in taxes, but this seems to reek of manipulation, and threats to lumber companies as far as I can tell.
The Softwood Deal should read:
Canada Softwood industry: Bend over and take it... or else.
Yet more "lawful" spying on innocent people. The NSA has been and still is, accumulating the phone records of every call made in the US... Not recording the actual calls but a database of who called who, when and how many times...
News sites today all across Canada are pumping out stories of 'probable' terrorist attacks on Canadian soil, after the declassification of a CSIS report to the government. At first glance of course, this is immediate cause for alarm, and I am quite surprised that nobody at work has come to me saying that Al Qaeda is plotting to destroy the Saddledome or the CN Tower. I think the fact that the media has jumped all over this is far more of a threat than any bomb. In fact, now that this has made headlines, there *has* been an attack on Canadian soil. Not literally of course, but perhaps some folks will now become too 'vigilante', perhaps simple paranoia or perhaps to the extent of harassing their neighbours simply because they are of Middle Eastern decent. After all, it began happening in the US, with idiots like Ann Coulter and that writer from the Daily Tar Heel who was fired for her comments on strip searching every Arab at airports...
I believe that a *real* cause for concern is when our politicians begin sounding like clones of the Bush Administration, especially with regard to Canada's peace-keeping mission in Afghanistan. I still believe we are doing good there, and the mission is very important, especially now that it has heated up a lot. I fear it is going to get a lot worse though, and my opinion will sway along with the majority of Canadians abotu whether or not we should leave them to their own, just like the US and Iraq. However, Peter MacKay spoke while on a surprise visit to Afghanistan (hmmm surprise visits by high level government folks to the Middle East also rings a familiar bell) and what he had to say really scares me. It isn't anything to do with the troops, or the conflict, but the wording he chooses, and his reasons for Canada being there. It's photo-op Politicians and what they say that will cause me to stop supporting our role in Afghanistan.
"There is a great sense of common purpose and goals to be achieved here, in the areas of democracy, in the areas of combating terrorism and all that flows from terrorism," he said at a news conference after meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul.
He also said it's also in Canada's interest to work closely with Afghanistan.
"While Canada continues to have an abiding interest in stability and peace here in Afghanistan, we also realize that no country is immune from the reach of terrorism," he said. "So it is very much in our interest to work closely with Afghanistan, with our international partners in building a stable and generous country," he said.
Terrorism. War on Terror. It has hit our nation now, with these headlines, as if we had begun the blessed thing. Statements like the start of the article which say "Canada is committed to triumphing over terrorism in Afghanistan even if it takes longer than planned" start sounding a lot like the stuff we here daily from Iraq. Whether it is the 'stay the course' rhetoric or the 'hunt down terror' rhetoric. Of course the War in Iraq was only an off-shoot of the real War on Terror. The US seems to have forgotten about Bin Laden, except when a tape suddenly appears... If anything is going to make Al Qaeda or any other group decide to blow up the Saddledome, it will be a change in our policy in the Middle East, and our politicians sounding like they belong in the White House.
Myself? I refuse to live in fear. Some say it is vigilance, I say it is fear. These news headlines are breeding the fear that gripped America after 9-11. Maybe a few months, or a few years from now, people will come back and say 'I told you so', but for now, I'll stick to my own thoughts on this... For now, I watch as my Canada begins to be slowly eaten up by fear.
Bush has stated that he would like to close the gulag detention camp at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, but is too busy fishing to get it done.
Well seriously though, it seems the biggest snag is the wait for the Supreme Court to decide how all of the suspects there should be tried...
Now it seems to me that perhaps this great, wise and powerful Administration should have thought about this before they started detaining hundreds of people without charges, for indefinate periods of time. Of course, logical planning is something that George and his top brass seem to have left behind at the polls... It is merely another example of how they have failed miserably to do anything right. Meanwhile, these people who are all innocent (until proven guilty you wingnuts) will continue to wait for trials, even after the expected Supreme Court results in June.
Rumsfeld has dismissed the calls for the prison to be closed. He suggests that if folks have better ideas, he would like to hear it. I think he would like to see all of the people rot indefinately, guilty or not.
This comes at a time when Bush is at an all-time low in popularity. A whopping 31%.
Note: Some mentally challenged people do not understand the "loose" useage of the word "gulag". Generally speaking, it could refer to a prison, and not just a forced labor camp in the former Soviet Union. I am very sorry for any confusion.
McChimpy the Fisherman: A tale of the Best of Times
In our current world of amazing stupidity, I read an interesting tidbit on the Green Knight. Of course, I didn't actually expect anything less than this from the man they are calling "The Worst President Ever"...
According to Reuters, Preznit McChimpy recently told a German newspaper that his best moment in over 5 years in office was nothing less than catching a big perch in his own lake.
"You know, I've experienced many great moments and it's hard to name the best," Bush told weekly Bild am Sonntag when asked about his high point since becoming president in January 2001. "I would say the best moment of all was when I caught a 7.5 pound (3.402 kilos) perch in my lake," he told the newspaper in an interview published on Sunday.
How can anyone defend someone as stupid as this? I mean, to be fair, his reign as King of the USA has been anything but stellar, and in fact, almost every move he has made has either been the wrong move, or backfired completely. So maybe this fish story is as good as it gets...
After a weekend that saw tons of stuff getting done, including painting in the workshop area of our garage, lots of music practice, family swimming and an unhealthy addiction with Might and Magic VII (that works sans sound in XP) I had a brutal time sleeping last night. There is a lot happening these days, but I don't have the drive, time or energy to write thoughts down. I have my first ball game of the season tonight (unless it rains) so I probably couldn't sleep because of that. It was terribly windy last night as well, with trees and things banging all night outside.
One thing I must do is curb this gaming addiction and get some painting done. Without painting, there is no mini sales, and without mini sales, there is no new guitar...
Really, I can't believe they wasted resources deciding this in the Supreme Court... Of course, they made the right decision.
In our spoon-fed society, where no-one wants to take responsibility for their own actions, I guess pinning a drunken driver on the party hosts is par for the course. Of course, I disagree completely however. If I want people over, I will encourage them to walk or take a cab of course. There is no way I would ever force anyone to hand over keys, or worse though, and if the SCC had decided hosts were responsible, I wonder how many BBQs people would have still, and nights at the friend's... Next thing you know, people will be suing fast food places for having hot coffee... oh wait!!!!
Grow up people. If you are stupid enough to drink and drive, don't pin it on the kind folks that had you as a guest.
As part of the BlogExplosion community, we can rent out advertising for other blogs we like. This week, I am pleased to announce that my rental space has been taken by David at Utenzi Blog, for the second time now!
Calgary Alberta - After Anaheim cruised to an easy victory in game 7 of what was originally a tight series, it was found that the old Calgary trainer, Bearcat Murray was caught spiking the Flames' players water bottles with Nytol. When asked to comment on the incident, Murray declined to speak to reporters. It is suspected however, that since he was denied a visit to Disneyland as a child, he was easily turned by the offer of free passes for the famous family getaway.
Seriously folks... I wish only one thing tonight after watching the game... I could have my few hours back to do something else. I have never seen a team play so flat footed and without drive as the Flames did tonight. Watching a team losing by two in the third play as badly as Calgary really hurt. Not just the fact that guys weren't skating, but coasting around, but plays like Amonte streaking off the face-off in the Calgary end only to turn back and kill time, or the drop pass in the neutral zone with only minutes left...
At least Montreal gave it there all trying to win.
No offence to Bearcat Murray. His name used in parody only... :)
Yay. A 1% decrease in the GST will make me save so much money... What a joke. Let's say I spend $800 a month on taxeable goods. That means in one year, my tax relief from the GST cut will be (hold your breath please) $96. This is approximately 1/5th of the relief a 1% cut in the tax bracket would bring. What if I was really well off? What if I actually spent $5000 a month on taxeable goods? Well gee, I would save $600 then in a year. This "relief" is really BS considering the Tories are still raising the lowest income tax bracket by 0.5% over what the Grits changed last year. They are claiming of course, that they are lowering the tax bracket by 0.5%...
I also notice that much of the budget has been diverted from the arts and environment to *gasp* the military, law enforcement and security. Hello! Cutting spending on the environment? Arts? I am sure certain "professional" artists whom I won't name will have no problems with the government cutting funding to less fortunate artists and entertainers, but really, when culture dies and is replaced with the military, then society is lost.
Then there is the issue of handing out money to people for kids...
Thanks to Cerberus, I remember that many of the basics in life are GST exempt. So my figures are very high. I would suggest that I spend perhaps $300 a month on GST goods. That would be a yearly TAX RELIEF of $36.
In what was likely Montreal's best effort, Carolina defeated the Habs in overtime. The guys played the game of the series when they needed to and it was a great end to the best season we've had in ages! Saku, heal up. Next year is gonna be great!
Tonight at 5:00 the game will start that will either see the Habs eliminated or at the least heading home for a game 7. They started out terrific, and slowly fizzled away. In fact, I am not sure who wants to win least, Carolina or Montreal, but I certainly hope the boys show up tonight and the refs stop calling guys for touching each other... At least Huet and Ward have shown up. I expect Kovalev to play the game of the season tonight, and may the Gods help the Habs get going on the powerplay again...
There have always been jokes about Americans and their apparent inability to see beyond their own borders, not knowing where difficult to find places like Iraq and, er, Canada are... Well now there is proof, and it even extends inside their own borders! It seems that the no-child left behind policy left out Geography as a core study.
WASHINGTON - Despite the wall-to-wall coverage of the damage from Hurricane Katrina, nearly one-third of young Americans recently polled couldn’t locate Louisiana on a map and nearly half were unable to identify Mississippi.
Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 fared even worse with foreign locations: six in 10 couldn’t find Iraq, according to a Roper poll conducted for National Geographic.
Wow. I wonder how many young folks sign up for the military without actually knowign where they are going? What is really sad is that I am starting to see this with our own kids up here. Many have little interest in events beyond their immediate locations... and it is too bad considering how technology opens the world up to all of us!
Considering tonight may be the last night of hockey interest for me as I have lots of Hope for the Habs but little Faith, I am glad that the new Slo-pitch ball season is getting underway. We had our first practice last night, and another tomorrow and then our season starts on Monday. Still a little chilly with rain (and even snow) in the forecast, but it feels great to get out there and hit some balls, and play some field. We aren't the best team, but we always have fun, and really, that's what it's all about :D
All opinions shared on this site are strictly my own. Some people may disagree and that is fine, but rude comments or overzealous debate will be curtailed. I enjoy civil discourse, and encourage independent thought. I oppose George W. Bush and his Wars based on lies.
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I have lived in Central Alberta almost my entire life, except for a 4 year stint when I was younger in Swaziland, and about 5 years in beautiful BC. I have a wonderful girlfriend and am expecting very soon! I work in the engineering field and enjoy writing in my spare time.