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Out Of Control

April 26, 2007 @ 08:54

Another thing we have to worry about as our society deteriorates is the ability of police to handle it.

When reporters spoke to students at Leacock yesterday they described the BNS gang as heartless and ruthless, and remember we're talking about teenagers here.

The kids at Leacock say this gang operates in numbers, with their strategy to outnumber any opposition they come up against. The kids claim it's impossible for the police to keep up and its only getting worse.

But of all the reports I read, the most disturbing was the response of the Leacock Principal George Benedek.

He wouldn't comment on any acts of physical intimidation occurring among students. "Bullying goes on at every school," he said.

Somehow I would expect more out of him given the situation. It almost sounds like he's intimidated.

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Double Standard

April 26, 2007 @ 08:53

In was a wild scene at Toronto City Hall on Tuesday when police charged five airport taxi drivers with trespassing, and slapped handcuffs on two of them after they refused to leave the council chambers.

The airport limo drivers became crazed after city council decided they would no longer be able to pick up fares in the city. You can read about it here.

But it's not the dispute that amuses me; it's how the drivers were treated while at City Hall.

Tell me how, within minutes, these taxi drivers can be charged and some put in handcuffs because they occupied city hall, while there's an ongoing occupation into its second year at Caledonia and nobodies doing a goddamn thing about it.

Why would the cabbies be treated this way within one hour, while nobody did anything for 30 hours this past weekend while natives blocked a major transportation artery near Deseronto?

Just wondering - Just wondering why there's such a double standard.

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Start Talkin'

April 25, 2007 @ 09:32

Over the past few months I've written a couple of pieces about a 20 year old drug dealer named Richard Steele.

He was at the scene the day Jane Creba was shot to death on Yonge Street and since then has tried to weasel his way out of testifying. It was the usual case of "I didn't see nothin", which has become fashionable on the streets of Toronto.

But I'm happy to report that Steele will have to testify in the Creba case. From the outset he denied having any involvement but police widely believe he was the intended target on that day.

Yesterday Richy boy got his ass nailed to the wall in a Toronto court room when wire taps revealed he was indeed on the scene, in fact he's heard saying he was standing right beside Creba.

It means Steele will have to testify and I only wish I could have been in the courtroom yesterday to see him squirm when Justice Ian Nordheimer handed down his decision.

Steele pleaded for his life yelling at the judge "I hope you're happy. You just killed me, that's what you did - this is justice at its best."

Like we're all supposed to feel sorry for this thug who back in January pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to traffic crack cocaine, conspiracy to traffic handguns and possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking.

He's bad news and it's believed he knows a lot more than he's letting on and he owes it to the Creba family to tell them what he knows so her killers can be brought to justice.

Sometimes you have to wonder where people like this come from, but in this case you don't have to look far.

His mother is Valerie Steele, former head of the Jamaican Canadian Association, the same Valerie Steele who could lose her job as an adjudicator with the Ontario Rental Housing Tribunal because she admittedly broke a few rules, and she's currently under suspension.

Yesterday while leaving the court room young Richard looked at the Crown Prosecutor and said "you piece of shit, I hope you're happy."

And what did mom say "Richard, don't lose yourself that's what they want."

That's what "they" want Valerie? Who, the people who want to get to the bottom of how an innocent 15 year old girl was shot to death on a crowded street?

Despite wire taps, despite prior convictions and despite the fact he was on the scene and he has a couple of bullet wounds, mom is still hanging in there attempting to protect her son from the big bad hand of the law.

Mom still positions things like her gun totin', drug dealin' son is a victim.

Valerie Steele's reaction to her son's ignorance in a court of law tells you all you need to know about how an asshole becomes an asshole.

And unfortunately our streets are crawling with them

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Murph's The Man

April 24, 2007 @ 08:54

Not to repeat myself, but I have to repeat myself. The most enjoyable part of doing this blog is receiving feedback.

The couple of weeks have been fabulous with heavy response to my abortion posting, the posting directing you to an editorial in a British newspaper, and of course the postings dealing with domestic terrorism in Ontario.

Believe me, I don't like to pick favourites because I appreciate every posting I get, but yesterday I received an e-mail through my contact page and I think it's a fabulous idea.

It was sent to me by somebody named "Murph" with no return address.

Hey Freddie,

"Your comment on the Mohawks triggered a thought on their tax free life. How about offering the same deal to all living to all living veterans or their spouses?
Details would have to be ironed out but all those who served their country during recognized conflicts should be able to live tax free for the rest of their lives.
There must be thousands of veterans who have served our country in the World Wars, Korea, and Afghanistan.
They have earned this benefit and it would give them the respect they deserve. If the rest of us all see a small increase in our income tax, so be it."

Murph

Yes Murph I love your idea but I'd like to add one angle.

As your tax plan is phased in, the aboriginal one should be phased out.


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The Funny Paper

April 20, 2007 @ 09:11

At least once a week I go some place in or around the Brampton area for some curried chicken or jerk pork.

It could be the Jerk Plate near my house, or it could be Portland Jerk near Torbram Road and Queen St. Hey, sometimes I'll be downtown and check out a new place.

Regardless of where I am, as part of my curry or jerk ritual I look for a newspaper called "Share -Canada's largest ethnic newspaper".

While I'm attacking my curry or jerk I like to read this newspaper because it amuses me to no end. I'm amused at how vicious it can be and the way it can constantly fling accusations at white people without being challenged.

It amuses me how, if the roles were reversed, and this was a mainstream newspaper writing the same things about black people, shit would hit the fan.

I'm also amused at how the "newspaper" fails to report stories of black on black crime in Toronto. Many times I've gone out of my way to find a copy of Share when there have been incidents in Toronto.

When Toronto police made a major gang bust in the Malvern area of Scarborough last year the story didn't seem to make the grade, but let a cop stop somebody in an expensive car and you'd think the world had come to an end.

I'm not saying every article in every edition is this way, far from it - but there's enough to keep me coming back.

My favourite writer is a woman named Pat Watson. It's amazing how she can take pretty well any issue and turn it into white against black.

In the current issue (April 19) Pat determines that rap music is actually the product of white business who encourage black kids to write the stuff. Not only that, but Pat says it's mostly white kids who listen to it.

Here's an excerpt from Pats column.

Most of the major recording labels are White owned and they know what interests white audiences, especially white male audiences purchasing most of this music. Look again into those cars and see who is bobbing their heads to this music, they don't look much like those who make the music do they?

How's that for a generalization?

Watson's point comes from the Don Imus controversy and it's her way of deflecting critics who've recognized the hypocrisy of what Imus said stacked up against the steady stream of crap that comes out of the hip hop and rap culture.

Sweet Pat won't give an inch. In her world, if there's a problem in the black community it can always been traced right back to dumpy white guys like me.

But that's OK, I keep it all in perspective. I get my curry or jerk, I grab my copy of Share, and when I'm done, it all goes in the garbage.

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Quell The Cell

April 19, 2007 @ 08:46

The Toronto District School board returned some sanity to the education last night. They approved a board-wide ban of cell phones in hallways and classrooms.

Why this was ever an issue, I don't know? Why anyone would have ever expected a kid to be able to leave a cell phone activated while inside a school is beyond me.

But I'll go farther than that. Why most parents buy their kids cell phones is downright mind-boggling to me.

As you might expect there were parents who actually argued against this, claiming they have the right to be in contact with their kids 24/7 because of today's hustle bustle lifestyle.

It's bullshit of course. Cell-phones are misused 99 percent of the time by kids. For text messaging during class, taking goofy pictures and in some cases using them to cheat on tests.

I mean really. Before cell-phones if mommy or daddy needed us that badly, all they had to do was call the office and they'd send someone down to your classroom.

Beyond that, all a kid has to do now is wait till they get outside before using their phone.

Right after they light up a smoke.

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The Country The World Forgot - Again

April 19, 2007 @ 08:41

Just a reminder to everyone, if you comment on a particular posting, or attempt to correspond with me through the "contact" page, don't forget to leave your e-mail.

This does not work like regular e-mail. If you comment, you have to fill out the e-mail address field, or if you use the contact page you have to actually type in your e-mail address.

If you don't, I am left with nothing. Nothing at all.

For example, someone was nice enough to send me a link the other day regarding a piece that was written in the Sunday Telegraph, a UK newspaper.

I'd like to thank you for it, but I can't.

Anyway, here it is.

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Great Dialogue

April 18, 2007 @ 09:25

Yesterday I brought your attention to this posting and a response I received from Abu Hasan on the subject of Muslims.

Well the response to Abu Hasan's response was fantastic. So impressive that he took the time to publish thankyou to everyone who took part....

"I enjoyed reading all your comments. This could lead to so many different discussion points.. I almost wish I was at a round table with everyone who posted here.. I'm sure the discussion would be lively and educational,
especially for me.

Furthermore, some of the real issues brought out above are easier to deal with in conversation (but not necessarily debate).

A great thing that Fred seems to have done here is break down some barriers.. I don't think it was unintentional either, as of late. As he said earlier, using the Internet this way really feels good".

Thanks Fred....

No problem Abu Hasan. Don't forget we're going out for lunch soon.

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Searching For Answers

April 17, 2007 @ 09:48

If you read this blog often you know that I a stickler for parenting. There is way too much buck passing in our society.

Too often we look to government and social services to correct the wrongs that were created within our own walls. The behaviour of so many kids is quickly pinned on "society" or "peer pressure" or a "chemical imbalance", when in fact it's nothing more than the result of bad parenting.

I'm not about to blame what happened at Virginia Tech yesterday on bad parenting, but the incident sure does make you think when you flip around the Cable News Networks and hear the explanations.

If you read this blog often you also know I'm not a big fan of video games either. I think they're bad for kids. Some are educational and non-violent but even those shouldn't be over used.

I think video games have been a curse on contemporary society and are the direct result of some pretty severe problems including obesity.

But I'm not about to blame what happened yesterday on video games either.

A nut is a nut is a nut and there's telling what some kids are capable of until it actually happens and there's probably no way of scientifically linking a video game to a massacre unless the perpetrator actually admits it.

At the same time I can definitely see how a video game in the hands of a nut could spawn ideas and flip switches. Some of the games out there are unbelievably gruesome and cruel and a steady diet of this shit has got to have an affect on kids.

Most kids can handle it to the point where they won't go out and kill somebody, but there are always those who will slip the through the cracks and this takes us back to parenting.

How many parents use video games as baby sitters? Unfortunately the answer is "far too many" and the damage is a cumulative thing that may not manifest itself until it's much too late.

Who knows, it's a stretch but maybe that's what happened yesterday. It may be grasping at straws and much too basic to provide even the basis for an explanation, but then again it may not. Maybe the explanation "is" that basic.

Maybe our kids have too much coming at them from too many angles in 2007 and parents are just too goddamn busy to take notice.

I heard something rather profound yesterday, but I watched so much coverage on so many different outlets I can't even tell you who said it. But it made a lot of sense.

"This pop culture our children are swimming in is actually raw sewage."


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Expensive Pictures

April 17, 2007 @ 09:46

For six or seven years, including the year after I got fired one of the many radio perks I had was a free phone. The radio station didn't give it to me, it was a deal through Bell that I had in return for some personal appearances.

The deal was cut off on December 31st and I had to become a regular paying customer.

Wow. You really have to watch what you're doing with these new fangled phones when you actually have to pay for them. Under my old deal I could surf the net, use my phone as a modem and send pictures without ever having worry about a bill.

This week I learned how life is for most of the world. I got my Bell bill and there was a 30 dollar charge for the Mobile Browser and I had no idea what for.

Again, under the old "free" system I never paid attention to the terminology because I didn't have to. I just pushed buttons until things worked the way I wanted them to.

Anyway, I phoned Bell yesterday and got an education into sending pictures through the air.

A couple of weeks ago I had a posting about Marcel Dionne appearing on Leafs Lunch at Wegz Stadium Bar in Vaughn.

While I was there I took a couple of pictures with my new phone and then quickly e-mailed them to my home computer Neighbour John's. Price tag - 32 dollars plus tax.

Turns out when you send a picture it automatically activates the browser and then you're charged by the megabyte. I took two pictures and sent each one to two different computers which amounted to .9766 megabytes.

Bell charges $30.72 per megabyte, but they've just introduced something called a courtesy cap so you're never charged more than 30 dollars a month. And that's what happened to me.

There are programs that offer unlimited use for seven dollars a month, but you have to register for this and I hadn't because I had no idea and to be honest, sending pictures through the air isn't something I planned on doing with any frequency.

But you know the deal people. Ignorance is no defense. Even though I wasn't told about this, and the cost of sending pictures is absolutely ridiculous, I really didn't have any defense when I called the billing people at Bell.

They explained the whole process to me and although I was rather annoyed I kept my cool right up until I asked if there was anything they could do. And just when I was ready for a fight, they offered to take 20 dollars off the bill.

A few years ago I probably would have pushed harder for total elimination of the bill based on the fact that subscribers really should be made more aware of the costs. At the very least there should be an option question on the phone alerting you to a browser start up.

But I don't have that kind of fight in me any more. So accepted the ten dollar charge and wrote it off as experience.

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