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A Puff of Absurdity: Peace or Apathy

I found this piece on Medium, yet another on-line time suck! You can’t read it without joining, so I copied and pasted the bits I like below. This piece says much of what I’ve been saying for a while now: We need to wake up and pay attention and act on what we see. But Chris Morris says it more poetically than I ever could:

The greatest sorrow I feel is when I see someone mistaking peace with apathy. I’ve dwelt in that delusion myself. Now I see it as a temporary suicide — a form of limbo that diminishes the (Read more…)

A Puff of Absurdity: Supporting Bare Boobs

It’s not about this:

the Braza Bra

It’s about arguing in favour of a woman’s right to take off her shirt.

How stupid, right?

I mean, it’s stupid that we have to argue about this and try to make it clear to everyone why it should be acceptable and actually have to argue with police who don’t know it’s been legal in Ontario for decades. But some people – mainly men, judging by the comment on various articles – are still having a hard time with it. And it’s really, really stupid that 8-year-old children and their parents have to (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Atwood–It’s Not Climate Change-It’s Everything Change

 

As we speed through Social Media, our email and various blogs occasionally a piece that demands that you make a date to read the entire post. This is Margaret Atwood and she has

Read more…

Cowichan Conversations: LNG Lobby (Resource Works) Fakes Partnerships With Prominent Organizations

Rafe Mair has been scrutinizing the efforts of Resource Works, a slick front for the slime-balls from Malaysia that want to build and LNG Plant at Woodfibre in a treacherous to navigate area of Howe

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Politics Canada: Harper makes Canada into the ‘tobacco company’ of the global community

Stephen Harper has done many things to change Canada’s reputation on the world stage. Probably the most noticeable to people in other countries around the world is it’s record on environmental protection. Canada has blocked agreements, accords and pacts that would help humans to make a smaller impact on the planet. Emissions targets are not met, not agreed to. The phrase ‘climate change’ is virtually outlawed from the lips of anyone involved in the Harper government.

In addition Harper is the global peddler of tar sand, dirty oil. A product that destroys the local environment when extracted and pollute more (Read more…)

A Puff of Absurdity: On Guilt and Responsibility

I grew up in a family with a strong work ethic. You couldn’t read the comics until you finished the world news first. Sitting to do anything other than read something educational or literary wasn’t acceptable. We were made to feel guilty for every minute we wasted.

Since childhood, I’ve tried to counteract this teaching. No matter how good parenting is, kids will always be trying to shake off whatever form of oppression they felt though the misfortune of just being born to these particular people. These days, I’m trying to play without thinking about work. I’m trying to just (Read more…)

A Puff of Absurdity: The Smell of Your Moral Judgment

“If you’re going to tell people the truth, make it funny or people will kill you.”   

                        – Billy Wilder

I just watched a series of videos (65 minutes if you watch them all in one go) by Innuendo Studios that were made specifically about the backlash against Anita Sarkeesian, the feminist who questioned some of the choices made by video game creators, but the ideas in these videos can be applied to explain the backlash to any social movement, like environmentalism.

First, they look at why people (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Brad Wall On “Sustainably Developing Our Energy Resources”

Originally posted on John Klein – Regina:

Brad Wall says “…we need to do better in terms of more sustainably developing our energy resources…”

Unfortunately what he means is he wants to find ways of ensuring fossil fuels and uranium come out of the ground at an increasingly profitable pace, no matter the world’s demand/need for such things. Greg Fingas views it as such, too.

New blog post: For @PremierBradWall pride is all about corps burning resources, not ppl accomplishing goals http://t.co/US6QUaXtWv#skpoli

— Greg Fingas (@juristblog) July 17, 2015

He notes that oil pride goes “Before the (Read more…)

A Puff of Absurdity: In the Realm of Terrifying

CBC has a brief (7 min.) podcast up about the rise in anxiety in the population being reported by psychologists over the past couple of years due to climate change. One of the climate scientists, when asked how he feels about it, suggested the title of this post.

This is something I discuss with my students regularly, and I was pleased I’ve come to the same conclusions as the experts in this field. It all goes back to Freud’s defence mechanisms as a way of coping with cognitive dissonance (see more in Anna Freud’s book). In a (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Paying Back Our Carbon Debt

This is concerning information.

The scariest climate paragraph I've read today: http://t.co/p8qLzSyHRB pic.twitter.com/HS4PhTzbDd

— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) July 13, 2015

So, how do our politicians (in B.C. and elsewhere) deal with the fact that we need to triple the size of our forests by 2050 to have a fair shot at avoiding 2 degree climate change (which will ruin everything)?

BREAKING: @AJWVictoriaBC calls for immediate emergency debate on #climatechange #bcpoli @BCGreens

— Adam Olsen (@AdamPOlsen) July 13, 2015

@chrisalecanada @BCGreens @AJWVictoriaBC Yes – I just started watching now as well – apparently gov & opposition shut (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Jim Stanford highlights how the Cons are focused on exactly the wrong priority in pushing for cuts at a time when Canada’s economy is in dire need of a jump-start: In the grand economic scheme, a deficit incurred as the economy slows is neither surprising nor undesirable.  But the Tories’ commitment to deficit elimination, no matter what, is all about politics.  First, it justified the big “social engineering” tax cuts (income splitting, so-called child support, etc.) that they announced last year as the centrepiece of their re-election campaign.  (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Martyn Brown: Christy Clark’s boon to Big Oil

Richard Hughes

Martyn Brown’s excellent assessment of the BC Liberals manifest incompetence and devil may care attitude shows how they were duped into what can only be described as a complete and utter abdication

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A Puff of Absurdity: Celebrity Impact

So Harry Styles advises us to avoid SeaWorld if we care about dolphins, and everybody’s talking about it.  This could just be the needle that broke the camel’s back; many groups have been trying to stop the hunt of dolphins since The Cove first aired.  Or it could be, as I’ve said before, that some of our celebrities are like royalty of old, and we the peasants who will blindly follow their lead. Is there any single act that had more effect on LGBTQ rights than when Ellen came out on her sitcom? And I remember the first mention I (Read more…)

Susan on the Soapbox: The Cowboy Code and the Abuse of Grazing Leases

Alberta ranchers could teach Wall Street moguls a thing or two about leveraging other peoples’ money for personal gain.

The Auditor General just released a report showing that Alberta ranchers short changed Albertans about $25 million last year. Furthermore, they’ll keep doing it unless the new government does something about grazing leases on Crown land.

“Longhorns Gone Wild” by Robert Hurst

To be fair, the ranchers aren’t doing anything illegal. They’re using cowboy ingenuity to exploit a loophole in the law that’s big enough to accommodate a herd of Texas longhorns.

Grazing leases

Sixty percent of Alberta land is owned (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: David Suzuki: Welcome to an extreme, warming world

Canadian environmentalist David Suzuki explains why extreme weather is being experienced more frequently around the world now than in the past.

The post David Suzuki: Welcome to an extreme, warming world appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

A Puff of Absurdity: So I Went to the March

I went to the Jobs, Justice, Climate march on Sunday.  It’s taken me a few days to think about what I think about it.

Klein so close at the pre-pre-rally.

I got to Queen’s Park way early and sat under a big tree to read and wait, and I happened to sit where the media were setting up, so right next to Naomi Klein and Bill McKibben.  I missed seeing David Suzuki, and I somehow didn’t recognize Jane Fonda.  But the usual crowd was there.  In the pre-rally show, they faced the media with their backs to us, which felt (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Where Are Our Leaders?

Vancouver is all but obscured in this satellite image

It’s fire time in BC.

Real leadership means speaking the words, recognizing facts and realities for people, and saying leader-y kinds of things like empathic comments that reflect understanding, like an acknowledgement that things are changing thus making BC more vulnerable to this huge fire risk, like we have many smart people exploring risks and coming up with plans to make sure this will happen less in the future.

Instead, we have no leaders. They’re silent, on vacation or while in the city [Harper], living the contemptuous life of having so (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week.

- David Dayen explains how fiscal policy intended to ensure growth for everybody is instead sending all of its benefits to the top end of the income scale – and thus failing to ensure any growth at all: (L)et’s examine how central banks try to revive economies. They mainly try to lower interest rates in a variety of ways. This entices consumers to borrow cheaply, spurring more economic activity. Plus, consumers can refinance into lower interest rates on their current loans, saving them money that they could choose to spend. Without high returns from (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: For Canada, a commitment to the environment and jobs is possible

Naomi Klein and environmental activists will call for a “long term sustainable strategy that leads to renewable energy” during the March for Jobs, Justice and the Climate in Toronto on July 5.

The post For Canada, a commitment to the environment and jobs is possible appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Accidental Deliberations: Thursday Evening Links

This and that for your Thursday reading.

- Daniel Marans reports on Bernie Sanders’ push for international action against austerity in Greece and elsewhere. And Binoy Kampmark documents the anti-democratic and antisocial ideology on the other side of the austerity debate.

- Noah Smith writes that while there’s no discernible connection between massive pay for CEOs and actual corporate performance, there’s a strong link between who an executive knows and how much the executive can extract.

- The CP reports on UNESCO’s push to study the impact of the tar sands on Wood Buffalo National Park. And Tavia Grant breaks (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Afternoon Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- The Star’s editorial board writes that five years after police committed serious human rights violations at Toronto’s G20 summit, nobody seems to have learned any lessons from the abuses. And David Lavallee tells his story of being interrogated for a “precursor to terrorist behaviour” based solely on his having filmed a pipeline for a documentary.

- Ian Gill argues that the impending federal election will may represent a last opportunity to take Canada off of a path toward environmental destruction. And Brian Kahn notes that the rest of the world is predictably shifting (Read more…)

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: France Has Law To Put Solar or Plants on Rooftops

I was impressed to learn that France had made new commercial buildings do this. I’ve felt badly that new buildings going up all over the University of Regina campus since I started paying attention to it in 1998, haven’t put a single solar panel up on them. There’s a building on Research Dr. with a round skylight that looks like a CD player, that would have been a perfect spot for some solar panels. At least the RIC building in 2006 had a partial green roof built onto its shady side.

reeves report: Can Elizabeth May Unmuzzle Canada’s Scientists?

Green Party of Canada leader Elizabeth May.

The success rate of private member’s bills in the federal parliament is abysmal. In the 100-plus years since 1910, Ottawa has passed just 271 of them. For comparison, more than 1,600 PMB’s were tabled between 1997 and 2015, and the rate at which they’re being drawn up is on the rise.

It’s not unusual for entire sessions of parliament to hum along without the passage of a single PMB. And when an errant private member’s bill does become law, more often than not the content of the bill is symbolic, proclaiming National Philanthropy Day (November (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Pope Francis offers hopeful perspective on global crises, says David Suzuki

Pope Francis’ recent encyclical on climate change contains a “scientifically and morally valid call for radical change”, says environmentalist David Suzuki.

The post Pope Francis offers hopeful perspective on global crises, says David Suzuki appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.

- Carol Goar discusses the contrasting messages being sent to Canada’s middle class in the lead up to Canada’s federal election campaign – and notes that the real decision for voters to make is whether they’re happy with marginally higher nominal incomes at the expense of greater inequality and more precarious lives. Mark Goldring makes the case for an economy oriented toward what’s best for people rather than short-term profits: Tackling inequality requires that people, not profit constitute the bottom line. We need everyone who is in a position of influence – business (Read more…)