Wednesday, June 27, 2007
But what always astonishes me is how the media, and people generally, let the right get away with being counterfactual. I mean, Cheney is the worst--he simply says false things and asserts their truth. But it flows through everything that the right does here. The astonishing nonsense of the immigration debate here (e.g. immigrants bring leprosy!), the fact that Dubya can keep asserting an al Qaida-Iraq link--and the media, like trained seals, just roll over and accept it.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Of course, their marriage doesn't really mean anything, back in the US. But it does mean something for them, and I think it's really sweet how they had some complete strangers come to their wedding and celebrate it with them.
Saturday, June 09, 2007
Sure. Our northern/prarie/western/maritime life is grand. And beautiful. But fucking WONDERS?
Not at all.
Where, pray, on that entire list is Toronto? Toronto itself should be a wonder. Toronto is one of the supreme human achievements, one of the few places on the planet without hate and without ethnic violence and a place where, for all its differences, a multi-ethnic polylingual society exists. It is the crushing--the brutal, crushing rebuke to the planet: to those who say that different cultures can't live side by side, to those savages in the US who rile against bilingualism, and to all those who think that a city must be monocultural and monolingual or at best have a minority or two to be tolerate.
Wonders. What would mine be?
In no order:
1. The Charter.
2. The CN Tower
3. Parliament's Centre Block
4. The Citadelle of Quebec
5. The National Gallery
And two more. But christ, we're not talking as wonders about concepts vetted by a committee. We're talking about concrete things that mean something. We're talking about things that we as a people have achieved--not some bullshit "the Prarie Sky" that was here before us and here after us. Fine--we're extraordinarily blessed with land a geography. But what matters is what WE did--what over 140 years of confederation and the 400 years of our history we as a people (not as an ethinicity or a nation or whatever) we did.
But screw this bullshit of a "wonder" being selected by a goddamn committee and balancing the various regional interests. That's not a wonder. That's geographical correctness.
Friday, June 08, 2007
Let's think about this. First off, the premise is fundamentally flawed. The issue of bilingual education is to help kids whose first language is spanish actually learn something else while learning english? In what universe--other than in the Republican "we make our own reality" one--does it make sense to put kids who don't speak English into English-only schools and expect them to a) learn what everyone else is learning and b) learn English? The point is that they have some education in spanish so that they can keep up with their maths and sciences, etc., while they get better.
And then, of course, is the usual idiot Republican habit of just saying things that sound good (If we don't fight them there) that actually have no meaning whatsoever. Bilingual countries don't work? Um. Let's see. Oh, there's that big cold one to the north. And Belgium. And Switzerland.
It's the shades of the resistance to official bilingualism in Canada--they're going to ram French down our throats--but the scale of what's suggested isn't even remotely the scale of what happened in Canada. In Canada, we decided that every single Canadians should be able to get essential federal government services in French or English. That's HUGE. It's not "Let's make sure that immigrant kids and immigrants generally can get access to local services in Spanish." But by how the Republicans shriek, you'd think that the proposal was to make everyone speak Spanish.
Christ, some people in this country can't even speak English (Dubya) . . .
Wednesday, June 06, 2007
- When Dubya stands up and tells "Vladimir"* that the missile shield isn't targeted at Russia, he expects to be believed. This after the yellowcake uranium, the WMD, the "we're winning," the "mission accomplished," the almost weekly invocations that the insurgency is in its "last throes" and they're just "desperate"--i.e. the complete disconnect from reality that Bush's public pronouncements.
- Andrew Sullivan's crusade against Hillary Clinton. What, from the man who for years sung the praises of George Bush, and who got down basically on his Catholic knees to worship at the altar of the Republican Party (or maybe just Karl Rove's dick)--after his wonderful judgement on how great someone will be as President, we're supposed to actually give a flying fuck what he thinks now? (This commentator makes a good point.)
- And while we're on Sullivan, how about his bitching about how the Republican Party is now "christianist"? And on how bad they are for gays? (Side note: with his insufferable ego, I'll bet he takes credit for inventing this term). Give me a fucking break. This from a man who goes on nonstop about how fucking great religion is, and who said oh well, on balance the Republicans are better for homos? Get off your fucking road to Damascus.
I could go on. But seriously, every time a Republican opens his or her mouth, they utter lies. Why should we believe anything they say now?
* Note on the Vladimir thing. How fucking insulting. Bush's "I'm jus' a regyoolar guy" think might work among the mouth breathing slack jawed masses that are his base, who seem to think it's better to be led by "one of us" than by someone you can respect and look up to, but to anyone else in the world it's just insulting. Of course, he did his "Steve" thing to Harper (and was corrected by Harper's mother who said that he never goes by Steve), and I shudder to think of what he called the Queen. Chretien, who appointed Adrienne Clarkson as Governor General, even though when she wasn't in office probably called her Adrienne, ALWAYS referred to her as "Governor" when they spoke, and she to him as Prime Minister (not that idiot yankee construction of Mr. Prime Minister). At some level, formality IS important, and given the reaction in Canada to the pejorative of calling Harper "Steve," one can only wonder about what Russians are thinking now.
Monday, June 04, 2007
However. The Anthems. First, my stepdad and I joined the other 20 or so Ottawa fans in belting out Oh Canada.
And then came the Star Spangled Banner. People put their hands on their heart, but only a few people sang. Nothing like this:
If anyone ever says that Canadians are less patriotic than Americans, or that people across the country, in the face of idiot provincial parochialism by the likes of Harris and Klien, are not at all committed to the continued existence of Canada, take them to a hockey game.