Sunday, January 6, 2013

Sunday musings

Aurora, Colorado – remember that town name?
Yes, this is the town where 12 people were murdered in a movie theater last year. Now it seems that 4 more people have perished at the hands of a madman there. I just do not get it when it comes to guns and America. Maybe it is due to the culture that feed people glorious stories of the rugged individualism that made America great via movies/books/TV shows.
I do not know.
Forget the debate about guns, assault weapons and enough ammunition to fortify a third world nation in private hands, instead what about the mindset and can it be changed?
Maybe I am starting to show my age, but I think that this debate is over and done with. Nothing will change in American society and the almost weekly stories of murder and sorrow will never end.
So be it.
America, I feel so sad for you.
So Hugo Chavez of Venezuela is not well – at least this is now admitted to by the government of that country. Indeed it seems that he will not be able to receive the oath of office as detailed in the constitution, but as the Vice President has said, that is only a minor detail so who cares? It would be interesting to get an unfiltered analysis of the Chavez era where unbiased reporting of how the country has fared under his rule could be viewed/read. Sadly with most of the western media controlled by American interests, this is tough to do. It seems that the mention of the word socialism in regards to any government or government program casts that nation into the camp of bad guys. Indeed in the last US Presidential election, how many times was the phrase “Canadian socialistic health care” issued in sneering tones? I wonder if anyone told those talking heads that the US Medicare system is socialistic based? What about food stamps?
Anyway, back to Venezuela, I wonder how the lot of the poor has changed under the rule of Chavez. That would be a good indicator of pubic support one would think. Just remember that that country is and has been a major supplier of oil to the States over the years.
So, failed Presidential candidate Al Gore is in the news again these days. It is interesting that he made a fortune about the dangers of global warning and excessive uses of energy by people – all the while having his own jet airplane and mansions with huge utility bills while lambasting the average citizen about their wasteful habits. He owned a broadcasting company and was wanting to sell it but not to anyone with a different political viewpoint than his. Well, at least that is if they were American. He sold the company to the people that run the Al Jazeera network. A network that American media and politicians call radical and anti American and Israeli. And he sold it in time to beat a tax deadline – the stuff of money making that the opposition Republican Party would be proud of.
OK, I was not going to mention the fiscal cliff in America, but will say one thing about it. Yes, early week legislation deferred the “cliff” but lurking in the wings is a problem that will make this seems like kids play – and that is the government must deal with the following: 3 debt and budget issues as well as a vote on raising the debt ceiling. And the debt ceiling is the elephant in the room in this. And the battle lines are being drawn in the sand with little compromise in sight. One suspects that another credit downgrade for the government is in the future and just watch that impact and shake the American economy.
The killing continues in Syria and the United Nations says it is embarrassed that it has not stopped the slaughter.
Right, a totally useless, dysfunctional quasi intellectual body laments the fact that it cannot impose its will on any country is embarrassed? Why not be honest and shut the damn place down. The world would mourn its demise for maybe a minute – if that long.
A couple of hotspots in the world are rather quiet these days. Egypt, Iran even Bolivia have gone into some sort of slumber.
But in Russia, well, that is a little different. It seems that the government has passed a law declaring beer is alcohol based and as such can no longer be sold between 11 p.m. And 8 a.m. And not by street vendors with kiosks anymore. That must really suck for the beer drinker that is used to walking up the street to get a late night beer or 6 pack. Also restrictions are now in place to stop the sale of tobacco products from the same vendors. Estimates range up to 500,000 people losing their source of income as a probable result with the closure of the now unprofitable vendor kiosks.
Time to give my mid winter report from here on the Island. It definitely is soooo blasted different that that on the Prairies. We watch streaming video news reports from there and see the images of large snow banks, ruts in the ice covered streets and stories of minus 35 plus wind chill! Memories of our trip back in mid December confirm this and then we look outside our place and see the green lawns and light mist coming down and wonder at the change. I doubt if we will ever long for those cold days and the snow. This past week we went to a local park and did a walk around for about an hour and considered ourselves fortunate to be able to do so.
At the local grocers this morning they had winter pansies on sale – like, really? And one of our neighbours is coming over next week to help trim our apple tree and get it ready for Spring. Unbelievable.
But, I will take it.
Take care out there,
flatlander 52

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