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Returning as an affiliate: an old friend of ours.

Please welcome back as a Progressive Blogger affiliate “A Grumpy Hobbit”. Some folks who’ve been long time readers will remember “The Wingnuterer”. Well… he’s back after a long blogging absence

The Disaffected Lib: The Face of God – Why It Looks Just Like a Circuit Board!

If there is a Supreme Being out there in the multiverse, it’s probably a “mind-blowingly intelligent super computer.”

Many scientists believe the human race is only decades away from being able to download and upload experience to and from human consciousness.

This is essentially a game-changing and mind-bending shift moving the human race from a carbon-based organic life-form to silicon-based, probably electronic, one.

And the highly-respected group of boffins – which includes astronomers like Seth Shostak, director of NASA’s Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence program, NASA Astrobiologist Paul Davies, Library of Congress Chair in Astrobiology Stephen Dick, and Susan (Read more…)

Blevkog: One would think…

One would think that the question “How many jobs will be created by the federal budget?” when asked of the bloody finance minister who had just delivered the thing would get a better worded response than “dunno“. If jobs were the teeniest tiniest concern for this government, one would think that at least a pat answer […]

The Disaffected Lib: Putin Signs Military Pact with Argentina

Well this is bound to piss off David Cameron.  Badboy Vlad Putin has inked a military pact with Argentine president Christina Fernandez backing her country against Britain over the Falkland Islands (Malvinas) dispute.

“The new agreement on military collaboration and data protection will enable the considerable increase of practical cooperation in this field”, Mr Putin said.

The posturing risks tipping the war of words between London and Buenos Aires into full-blown conflict, as tensions heighten over sovereignty of the remote south Atlantic outcrop. Meanwhile in the Baltic the Finns say they’ve spotted what they believe to be a Russian sub (Read more…)

DeSmogBlog: Fractured Land To Make World Premiere at Hot Docs

A film about a B.C. indigenous leader torn between two worlds as his people grapple with the impact of hydraulic fracturing on their territory will premiere at the Hot Docs Film Festival in Toronto Tuesday night.

Fractured Land follows Caleb Behn, a young Dene lawyer, as he navigates the conflicts on his physical terrain – where fracking is taking its toll on his land and water in northeastern B.C. — and the conflicts within himself as he struggles to reconcile his traditions with the modern world.

Tags:  Caleb Behn Fractured Land fracking Dene Hot Docs Damien Gillis Fiona Rayher Janet Annesley CAPP Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers LNG Liquefied Natural Gas Peace River . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: Fractured Land To Make World Premiere at Hot Docs

Recreating Eden: Good News Today: No Rant…

All right, it looks like everything’s a go.

Monday I signed off on the copy for the cover of my new novel River Music, and Alessandra Ferrari, Cormorant’s publicity director, just wrote that copies of the book will be shipped to arrive in Montreal May 13.

That will be perfect for the Words and Music even the Atwater Library is planning for Thursday, May 14.  That’s when I’ll present the book at 12:30 p.m., and pianist Jana Stuart will play some Debussy that is very important in the novel. 

Then we’ll have an official launch (Read more…)

Morton's Musings: Self Defence in Homicide

 R. v. Makpah, 2015 NUCJ 12: Defence of Person [158] The law respecting the ‘defence of person’ defence, whether it be self-defence and/or defence of other persons, is clear. [159] The Crown has the onus of disproving the ‘defence of person’ defence beyond a reasonable doubt. If the Court is left with a reasonable doubt about whether self-defence or defence of others is present then the accused is entitled to an acquittal. The burden of proof in relation to this defence is on the Crown, who must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defence does not apply. (Read more…)

DeSmogBlog: More Than 10,000 Enroll In Free University Course To Debunk Climate Science Denial

More than 10,000 people from 150 countries have signed up for a free online university course that aims to explain the science of climate science denial and give the public the best tools to fight misinformation.

The course, from the University of Queensland in Australia, has recruited some of the world’s leading climate scientists, along with psychologists, science historians and even world famous natural history presenter Sir David Attenborough, who all gave interviews for Denial101x. Course instructors include scientists and contributors to the Skeptical Science website.

John Cook, course developer, instructor and Climate Communication Fellow at the university’s Global Change Institute, (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Pope Francis Steps Up Campaign on Climate Change — Conservatives Alarmed

Climate Change concerns have been swept under the rug as much as possible by those despoiling our planet for profit.

Resistance has been widespread and gathering credible currency as the drought in California, water shortages

Read more…

The Moncton Times@Transcript - Good and Bad: April 28: a very confused world.

The above is a report from the Los Angeles Times (and other sources) on the rioting in Baltimore. It wasn’t important enough to make today’s Irving press – though there has certainly been warning. I grew up in a Montreal of racism,  hatred and abuse. But until I visited Baltimore, I had no idea of how intense racism, hatred and abuse – and ignorance – could be.

Some people will say the rioters are criminals and misfits. I’m sure many of them are. But that has nothing to do with it. There’s a reason why they (Read more…) Your Daily Digital Digest for Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Your news links for today:

The Power of Backroom Lobbying: How the Recording Industry Got Their Copyright Term Extension – Michael Geist Terrorism top security issue, PM’s adviser says – Chronicle Herald Justin Trudeau says he won’t second-guess Toronto police over conduct at G20 summit – Toronto Star Netflix and HBO border-hopping: Is anyone getting caught? – CBC News President Obama Demands Critics Tell Him What’s Wrong With TPP; Of Course We Can’t Do That Because He Won’t Show Us The Agreement – Techdirt Surveillance forces journalists to think and act like spies – Committee to Protect Journalists Whistleblowers Back (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Yes They Do. Of Course They Know.

Canada’s Auditor General may not be very good at casting bones and reading entrails at least not when the offal comes from Steve Harper.

The AG is complaining that, “The Conservative government doesn’t know whether its first-time homebuyers tax credit is working as intended, and kept the evaluation of the child fitness tax credit hidden.“

Hey Fergie, lighten up.  Those tax credits were designed, not for what they could do for the Canadian people, but for what they could do for the Conservative government – buy votes.  Who cares whether they work anywhere but the ballot box?  Sheesh.

Blunt Objects Blog: Fearless #PEIVotes Prediction Following Last Night’s Debate

The Liberals will win another majority government!!!!

Okay, well, it isn’t that bold and is pretty much what everyone else is saying or will say on election night. If you caught the debate last night, nothing in it really laid out massive changes in momentum for any of the party leaders, so I don’t suspect the race will be much different from the puttering along it did before.

In fact, if anything, the credibility of all four leaders in this debate was reinforced rather than hampered, leading to stalled momentum for everybody.

PC Leader Rob Lantz came off a little (Read more…)

Things Are Good: Greenpeace and the Climate Investigations Center create Anti-Environmental Archives

Some nifty news out of Greenpeace’s PolluterWatch program and the Climate Investigations Centre. They have release an archive of documents that show the deceitful tactics used by climate change deniers and their ilk. A new tool to fight against people who deny the future.

In the spirit of the Tobacco Archives and Chemical Industry Archives, the new Anti-Environmental Archives provide historic reference material on organizations and people who have worked to counter the environmental movement and stop government action to protect the environment on issues from endangered species to property rights, and from pesticides to global warming.


This document archive provides researchers (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Smoking Gun, What Smoking Gun?

(Your Punchline Here)

The oh so Conservative Senate is trying to prevent the audit into senators’ residency qualifications from being exposed in court in the Duffy bribery/corruption trial.

What’s that?  There are more Mike Duffy’s in the Senate?  Perhaps even including the Harper henchwoman sent to tar and feather Duffy and drive him out of the Red Chamber?

Duffy’s lawyer Donald Bayne and Crown prosecutor Mark Holmes briefly discussed the fact that a lawyer for the Senate is claiming parliamentary privilege to keep the audit from becoming public.

Neither Bayne nor the Crown have seen the audit, but it was (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Peter Ladner discusses why our tax and fiscal policies should be designed to reduce inequality – rather than exacerbating it as the Cons are determined to do: Right now, the richest 20% of Canadian families hold almost 70% of the country’s wealth. The bottom 20% are in a debt position. A CCPA study found that Canada’s wealthiest 86 people have the same net worth as the poorest 34%. Those of us with capital are adding these new breaks to existing tax breaks for capital gains, taxed at about half the rate of (Read more…)

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Prenzie Scamels

Four hundred years after he wrote them, we still use in everyday speech the many words and phrases Shakespeare coined. He gave us so many, it would be difficult, if not impossible, to list them all here. But two words he wrote have stopped us dead: prenzie and scamels. What do they mean? Were they more […]

Accidental Deliberations: Swing batta swing

Needless to say, the range of potential outcomes in the Alberta election (along with the continued flow of news battering the Prentice PCs as they try to regain some type of footing) has made for a fascinating campaign. But it’s worth pointing out that single polls and seat projections may miss important parts of the picture – meaning that the actual state of the race is far less certain than it might appear at first glance.

Take for example this important explanation of Election Almanac’s methodology: Election Almanac uses a proportional swing model for its projections based on the latest (Read more…)

Northern Reflections: His Waterloo

The chattering classes are praising Stephen Harper’s political smarts. He has set the agenda for the next election, they say, and he has delivered  a budget that the opposition parties can’t fight. But Scott Clark and Peter DeVries disagree. Harper’s budget, they write, is too smart by half:

The pundits are letting their cynicism blind them to two important facts — that this budget is based on fantasy math, and that not all tax cuts are equal. We covered off the first point in our last piece. Mr. Oliver is basing his ‘balanced’ budget on asset sales and extremely optimistic economic (Read more…)

Calgary Grit: Alberta’s Gilligan’s Island Election

Math is difficult. The most difficult math at the moment is figuring out where Prentice finds the 40 seats he needs for a majority.

My latest for the Post:

The 2012 clash between Danielle Smith and Alison Redford was an epic battle between two gifted politicians. It was must-see-TV for political junkies. The 2015 campaign? It reads like a script of Gilligan’s Island with bumbling gaffes and nonsensical plot lines. I mean, honestly, the prospect of an NDP government in Alberta seems about as plausible as a coconut phone.

Politics and its Discontents: "Is There A Poltician In Canada Who Will Simply Speak The Truth?"

That is the question Don Graves asks in his hard-hitting lead letter printed in this morning’s Star. Enjoy. I look out my window and see sunshine and vibrant signs of approaching spring. There’s even a Toronto sports franchise winning games.

But when I turn to the news media I read or hear about a glass half empty, half full, a glass smashed, a glass we can no longer afford because we are in so much provincial/federal debt and not to forget the growing number of Canadians who can no longer afford to buy a glass, full, half empty – or (Read more…)

The Progressive Economics Forum: The Conservatives, sound finance and the facts of recent history

Louis-Philippe Rochon

Associate Professor, Laurentian University

Co-Editor, Review of Keynesian Economics


With the tabling of a new federal budget on April 21, the Conservatives are trying to reinvent themselves as good economic managers, stalwart of sound finance. But after almost nine years in office, the data simply does not confirm this story. Mr. Harper’s more recent optimistic façade is a smokescreen that hides a dismal record on the economy.

Despite this fact, Conservatives have nevertheless traditionally portrayed themselves as fiscally-responsible tax cutters, job creators, and engineers of economic growth. At the same time, they have painted Liberals and New (Read more…)

Babel-on-the-Bay: Bearing bad news for NDP’s Tom Mulcair.

George Lakoff is an American who thinks. The UCLA Berkeley professor was in Toronto last week. We missed a chance to meet him. He is reported to have told his audience there is no such thing as the political centre. That must have been bad news for the New Democrats who came to see him. Their federal Leader Tom Mulcair has been busy trying to find the political centre and in the process he has lost touch with the left. Lakoff could have told him that the centre is just a hypothetical point on a bell curve, drawn by statisticians.

(Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper’s Plan to Brainwash Us Beyond Recognition

We knew the Cons are already spending $7.5 million dollars of OUR money to promote their smoke and mirrors budget.To remind Canadians that many of them can expect a cheque in the mail if they vote for them.And to try to brainwash Canadians into believing that Stephen Harper is a Great Economist Leader.But it turns out, no doubt because of the way he has driven the economy into the ground, that won't be enough.So the Cons are throwing in millions of their own dollars, to try to brainwash us, or blitz us, beyond recognition. Read more »

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Bad Designs

I’m not a graphic designer. I was not formally educated in that art. However, over the years, my jobs in editing and writing for books, newspapers, magazines and publishers have required me to learn the rudiments of layout, typography and design. I am the first to admit my design talent is merely adequate. Despite that, […]

Dead Wild Roses: Oh Wow – Let’s Not Believe “Spirit Science”

Cool Hard Logic proves that the religious do not have the monopoly on bullshite. The New Age woo-meisters are going hard on astrophysics and thus, it is necessary slap down them down hard. CHL admirably rises to the challenge.

All I can say is “ouch”.


Filed under: Science Tagged: Cool Hard Logic, Science, The Galaxy of Lies