November 2007 Archives
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How To Get Your Way
November 29, 2007 @ 09:43
Here's a fine example of how to get your way in Canada 2007. A Toronto District School Board meeting had to be shut down last night because a few people in attendance didn't like the agenda.
The proposal for an Africentric school was never meant to be part of last night's agenda but that didn't matter to a group that wanted it to be.
Apparently the paper work wasn't completed for a discussion to take place so this regressive proposal which will take us back to the days of segregation didn't make it to the table and this created quite a stir.
There was yelling and screaming and "rapping" with obscenities in it. One woman screamed "it is our children who are dying in these schools" another bellowed "why don't you want our children to be educated" and a few others occupied the seats of trustees.
After attempting to bring the meeting to some semblance of order board chair Sheila Ward was forced to shut everything down.
Isn't that wonderful?
It seems that Africentric schools are no longer a proposal or a privilege or an interesting concept, it's become a right that will be promoted through unruliness and overly dramatic rhetoric.
I read accounts of what happened in the newspapers this morning, and then I heard the audio on radio reports and it sounded ridiculous - and it begs this question - if this is the behaviour that comes with the issue simply not being on the agenda, what will happen if the schools don't happen?
According to the board Africentric schools were never meant to be part of the agenda last night and they have no idea how some people thought they were and they apologized vehemently for the misunderstanding.
But that wasn't enough and it created a reaction that leaves you wondering why there isn't the same passion put into parenting and being accountable for the behaviour of your children.
And of course the night ended with a typically Canadian response. The Toronto District School Board caved in and vowed a "special" meeting will now be held on the issue in January.
The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
November 29, 2007 @ 09:42
Kevin McGran has an interesting piece in the Star sports section today about our beloved Toronto Maple Leafs and the shootout.
They suck at it.
They're 0 and 3 this year and 7 and 17 since it was introduced a couple of years ago.
But really, it should come as no mystery to anyone. The Maple Leafs over-riding problem is their lack of skilled players.
They have good players, some of them bordering on very good, but outside of Mats Sundin there is very little "skill."
You know how the old saying goes. You can teach a player to check but you can't teach him how to score and for some reason over the past several years the Leafs have drafted players with little or no finish.
Mat Stajan and Alex Steen are two fine examples. No hands.
Darcy Tucker's never really been a goal scorer per say, while Ponikerovsky and Antropov are hit and miss at best.
Tuesday nights shootout was another indication of the Leaf woes. They had five shots and Sundin was the only guy to score. The rest of the crew didn't come close, bordering on pathetic.
With the Leafs, when overtime ends they don't take part in a shoot-out. It's more a shoot-at.
November 29, 2007 @ 09:41
Today I'd like you to visit Paul Romanuk's blog. Paul is a good friend but he doesn't like my politics.
Yesterday I mentioned one of Romy's responses to my blog so he turned around and wrote about it on his blog.
Paul once described me as a goose-stepping Conservative.
Support This Man
November 28, 2007 @ 10:00
Quite the response to yesterday's posting "A Solid Leader." It never fails, any posting I make with Stephen Harper as the focus gets a lot of reaction.
You either love him or hate it seems, with the majority on the hate side and I still don't fully understand it. I wrack my brain and I try to determine exactly what this man has done to be so disliked by so many and I can't find a lot of evidence.
His first crime obviously is that he's a Conservative and to many it doesn't matter what you say, what you do, who you save or what you support, if you're a Conservative you're automatically a heartless bastard.
Of course some of you will come back and claim I'm the same way with Liberals, but I have a track record to point to, I have evidence of 13 years of bad and corrupt government.
But Liberals like to turn the other way when it comes to such evidence and direct their energy and scorn towards the right.
I for the life of me can't understand why Harper is being so vilified for his stand on global warming. All he's trying to do is rally the world behind one unified attack on the issue, knowing full well if we buy into the bullshit that's on the table right now, we'll end up going it alone.
What is the use of Canada signing on the dotted line only to have the United States and a whack of developing nations not part of the deal? It makes no sense.
Sure, if we did sign Harper could walk away from the table like a hero in the eyes of some and Canada would be considered a good global citizen, but what would it accomplish, what would be gained? Absolutely nothing would change.
I think its time that we recognize and appreciate that our Prime Minister is sticking his neck out with an eye on the big picture. He's putting his reputation on the line to make sure that the fight on global warming becomes what it has to be, a fight that includes every goddamn polluter on earth.
Yesterday I chuckled at some of the responses accusing Harper of being some kind of a wimp because he won't move forward "unless the other guy does."
When applied to this issue that's ridiculous. Stephen Harper knows that in the best of situations, even those who sign on to any deal will probably end up breaking the rules, so what's the use of having a deal without having everyone involved and at least having everyone accountable.
Yesterday my dear friend Paul Romanuk, who I'm quite sure would vote for Jack Latyon and the NDP in the next election, offered this.
"Here's the reality: Most people outside of Canada don't even know who Stephen Harper is; nor could they give a rat's ass what he thinks about anything."
That's fine Paul, but what has it got to do with anything relating to this subject?
The Prime Minister is acting on behalf of Canada first with an eye towards creating a game plan that actually has some teeth.
Give the man time, lay of the hysterical global warming rhetoric and just for a minute don't judge along partisan lines and all of sudden it might make sense to you: Stephen Harper might become a global hero.
Look After Your Own
November 28, 2007 @ 09:59
We get word this morning that the Toronto District School board has released yet another "report" and it says students in Canada's largest school board feel alienated.
In a nutshell the report points out that seven out of ten kids are non-white and they don't see themselves reflected in the curriculum and of course now there's been a connection made between alienation and achievement.
The TSB will now scramble to make things all better by introducing "an aggressive staff development initiative" to help teachers bring a range of cultural perspectives into class.
There will be meetings and forums and think tanks and more meetings and I'm sure some expensive lunches and dinners along the way.
Meanwhile somebody has to come up with a game plan that will involve all students and all cultures and that should be a tall order. How do you do that? How do you bring "all cultures" into the curriculum without getting bogged down along the way?
Call me crazy, old fashioned and ignorant, but I don't care. If people want their kids to learn about their "culture" it should be done at home.
It works, and I speak from experience.
My wife's family moved from South Africa in the 1960's and they left to escape Apartheid. My mother in law couldn't remain in a country where her children were given ceilings. They could only go to certain schools in South Africa and then only certain Universities.
They had these restrictions because they were classed as "coloured", as matter of fact, my wife's South African birth certificate has the word "coloured" stamped right across it.
My in-laws wanted more for their kids with no limits and no restrictions so they found their way to good old Canada through England.
They came to Canada with nothing. They lived in a small apartment on Midland Avenue in Scarborough with nothing more than a few mattresses on the floor, but they were happy to be in Canada and rather than bitch and complain and find fault, they made Canada work for them.
They both got jobs and my wife and her two brothers went to school. It was back in the days when most classes were lily white so don't speak to me about alienation in 2007.
My wife Delyse was a visible minority with an English accent and at 12 years of age she was plunked right into a class room on a cold day in February.
But funny thing is, it all turned out OK. A strong family unit saw this family furnish their apartment, then move to a better one and then buy a house and then buy a business.
The kids went to school and her parents didn't complain about the curriculum because they were just happy to be in a great and free country. They were more than happy to adopt the ways and customs of their new country.
When it came to heritage the kids would ask questions at home and get all the information they needed, in fact my wife got enough information about South Africa in the 60's that she has no desire to visit the country in which she was born.
The point is, we sure waste a lot of time in this country today looking after the peripheral needs of so many and I hate to keep bashing a dead horse but I have to; it all comes back to the home.
There are so many bleeding hearts hell bent to supply excuses for every squeaky wheel in the country it becomes regressive.
Look after your own and the rest will look after itself.
A Solid Leader
November 27, 2007 @ 09:29
What a shame that for the first time in a long time Canada has been blessed with a strong leader but we don't appreciate it.
Yesterday in the House of Commons Stephen Harper was vilified and pounded by the opposition for his bold stance on a climate change deal at the Commonwealth meetings in Africa.
Harper, to his credit refuses to sign or agree to any document that excludes other countries that pollute just as much or more than we do. He thinks it's ridiculous for Canada and other countries to commit to things that developing countries are exempt from.
The easiest thing on earth would be for Harper to buckle under and look like an environmental hero by signing something that could totally screw this country in the long run.
He's not an idiot, he knows what's expected of Canada, and if we sign something we'll be expected to follow it to the letter while other countries get off the hook.
It could have enormous effects on our economy but nobody seems to take that into consideration in their rush to buy into all this hysterical global warming bullshit.
Yes, there is a problem and nobody denies it, not even the "evil" Mr. Harper who's desperately trying to broker a deal that involves everyone and takes a more rational and fair approach to global warming.
Instead of being criticized and insulted for it he should be applauded for it. Here we have a Prime Minister with big enough balls to take an unpopular stand on the world stage and we can't appreciate the fact the he's doing it in the best interests of Canada.
Yesterday he was accused of being a pawn for the big oil companies and standing in the way of progress.
He wasn't standing in the way of anything. He was standing "up" for Canada.
Oprah Loves Obama
November 27, 2007 @ 09:28
There's going to be something very interesting take place in the United States over the next couple of months and it could have a huge impact on who becomes the next President.
Oprah Winfrey will join Barack Obama in three early voting states, Iowa, New Hampshire and North Carolina, states considered crucial in his bid to defeat Hilary Clinton for the democratic nomination.
History dictates that these kind of high profile endorsement don't usually help put someone over the top but this could be a whole other ball of wax.
Oprah is considered the second most influential woman in the United States, ironically just behind Hillary. But her alignment with Obama could transcend all other examples of celebrity endorsements because Oprah speaks to those people who Obama has a realistic chance of reaching; women and black Americans with politics the last thing on their minds.
The United States suffers from the same problem that Canada has. Voter turnout is usually embarrassingly low and it's believed a candidate like Obama, backed by the huge media machine that is Oprah, could get people's attention and inspire them to come out and vote.
Voter turnout in black America has been pathetic over the past few decades because of a feeling of hopelessness; they don't feel anything will change. Well this could provide the breakthrough they've been looking for, a black candidate endorsed by a powerful black woman.
As it stands Obama is closing the gap on Hillary so this could get very interesting, and who knows, if it works for the Democratic nomination, it just might work for the Presidency.
Meet The Mayor
November 27, 2007 @ 09:27
I was listening to the John Oakley Show this morning and he played a clip of Toronto Mayor David Miller responding to the weekend of death.
There were four murders in the city and the best Miller could do was blame the United States for their lax gun laws.
This guy is unbelievable. He can't really believe what he says because it's ridiculous. It's obvious he'd rather keep his head firmly planted in his ass and let the city crumble around him.
Why doesn't he have the guts to look the problem right in the eye and identify it?
There's a gun culture in Toronto that makes up a tiny speck of the population. It's the same profile of person that's dying week after week after week but Miller doesn't have the guts to say it.
He'd rather pass the buck.
November 27, 2007 @ 09:26
Give Michael Bryant credit for actually going to the town of Caledonia, but it look like nothing will come it.
The new Aboriginal Affairs minister did something the Premier refuses to do, he showed his face to people who've had their lives turned upside down for the past 637 days.
Bryant met with several groups and had several discussions and admitted innocent people are hurting, but came away says he expects Caledonia town council to get back to him with a town revitalization plan.
What the hell does that mean?
Nothing will start to move in Caledonia until Six Nations protestors are given a strict time table to get off land that doesn't belong to them, or short of that, until they're physically removed.
November 27, 2007 @ 09:25
Forget the Maple Leafs dismal record of only eight wins in 24 games, forget the fact they're 14th in the eastern conference and don't appear to be coached very well or managed very well, the problems go way beyond that and they were blatantly exposed in the Toronto Sun this morning.
Mike Zeisberger reports that Maple Leafs President Richard Peddie has publicly admitted that hiring John Ferguson Jr. was probably a mistake.
"To be honest, it was a mistake on my part for not fully understanding at the time what the job of being (the Leafs GM) in this market fully entailed," Peddie said.
Well that's it! That's all you need to know about this organization and where the problems begin. Not that we didn't know it before now, but having Peddie actually come out and admit he doesn't know what he's doing is a major breakthrough.
It's like coming to grips with the fact you have a alcohol or drug problem. You have to admit it to deal with it.
I don't know about you, but I actually feel a little better this morning, although it's got to be extremely humiliating for JFJ.