Sunday, October 27, 2013

Sunday musings

The school, Sandy Hook in Newtown Connecticut, America, that was the site for the horrific massacre of  27 people last December, is now being demolished and all rubble is being destroyed by the contractor to eliminate “human scavengers” from pilfering pieces of the debris and then selling these “souvenirs” on the Internet.
First off, this is the only way to help diminish, but never remove, the memories of this evil act.
Secondly, what a sad statement of mankind in the way people will always exploit pain and grief for money in the selling of artifacts associated with monstrous acts.
This will never change as this has been a “feature” of man, but gee whiz, it is depressing all the same.
So, the Yanks spy on world leaders conversations?
Big deal, really.
Everyone wants the Americans to protect them from bullies but, as the Chief Inspector in Casablanca always was, are “shocked, yes shocked” to discover that the means to provide protection are not always above board.
As if Al Qaeda does not do things like this.
As if the regime in North Korea does do not do this.
As if the regime in Iran does not do this.
Heck, even in the great democracy of France - try checking into a hotel without surrendering documentation to the front desk that routinely is checked by local authorities.
Sadly, all world leaders are human, equipped for greatness and evil, so why are the conversations of them so sacred?
And with so many people posting any and every thing possible under the sun on Facebook, Twitter and the like, including intimate photos, what privacy is left anyway?
Just asking…
Another boatload of immigrants were rescued off the coast of Italy this week - 137 in fact. Over 32,000 migrants have made the journey to southern Italy by boat so far this year, according to the United Nations. One wonders how many have been returned home and whether the country of origin even wants them back. Heck what about the cost of feeding and housing these people?
So, the Middle East has been a little less noisy than usual lately so of course the pot is being stirred by reports that Iran is within a month of completing a nuclear bomb. So, an Israeli defense official says this is further justification for why Israel will take military action before that happens. So far, no reaction from the 2 big boys in the world - the USA and Russia. 
Curious isn’t it?
How is the price of gasoline in your part of the world these days? Did you know that oil was near $97 a barrel Friday, consolidating after two weeks of losses sparked by high supplies and patchy global economic growth. And yet when there is a “crisis” (tip of the cynical hat to the world media) in the Middle East, Venezuela, USA -storms in the Gulf of Mexico- without a murmur the prices jump at the pump in a heartbeat. So how come the prices haven’t dropped lately?
Perhaps it is because the fact that governments are addicted to the tax cash flow from gas sold. The higher the price at the pump, the more money that flows into government coffers.
Kind of sad, where in Canada, the money from gas tax in some provinces is supposed to flow into road budgets - sensible thinking. User pays for system right? Well, just ask the province of Saskatchewan about that. The money is diverted into what is called General Revenue and from that fund, all government operations are funded. So, of course highway building and repair suffers.
Another earthquake off the coast of Japan happened this week raising concerns again about the safety of the damaged reactor in Fukushima. Remember the core meltdown in Chernobyl and how, relatively quickly, a concrete containment dome was erected? The Japanese ‘quake was in 2011 and basically zip has been done? A proposal for refrigerated pools to hold the radioactive water in the ocean has been submitted but leakage continues to this day. A democracy sits by idle yet a former communist run country acted faster? Just what the heck is going on anyway?
OK, over in France a senior police commander in the Paris region has ordered his traffic officers to issue three tickets for driving offences every day, or they would miss out on days off over the Christmas period, it was alleged this week.
Gotta love the dedication to the letter of the law of the French police.
All the old jokes about buying tickets for the Police Xmas Ball to avoid real tickets spring to mind.
In a drastic move, it seems that the American Burger company, McDonalds has stopped using the Heinz Company as its supplier of ketchup!
The horor!
Last week a Roma camp in Greece was raided by police and a blond girl was found in the custody of a couple dark featured Romans’. Instantly the media declared that she had to a kidnapping victim, ignoring the statement of the caregivers, that they were related to the mother of the girl (living in Bulgaria) and that the mother gave the girl to them to raise as she could not afford to do so. Talk shows around the world, especially in the USA railed mightily on the topic. So…..DNA tests were done on the lady in question and indeed, the story was correct! Not a peep from all the righteous folks - not a one. Now the mother wants the girl back - to live with 10 others in a mud hut in Bulgaria, lovely future indeed.
And where are the do gooders doing now?
Right, off on another crusade “of the moment”.
Can people only focus for 10 minutes these days?
What is wrong with society anyway?
We lost another notable this week, Somdet Phra Nyanasamvara, Thailand's Supreme Patriarch who headed the country's order of Buddhist monks for more than two decades, has died at 100.
Well, this week brings the once wonderful night of Halloween to North America.
Years ago it truly was a fun night where kids were dressed up, usually in home made costumes to go with their parent(s) door to door in the area collecting “trick or treats” from bemused neighbours. Sadly this as everything in life, changed and in this case, probably for the worse. Now the costume industry is BIG TIME indeed and home-made outfits are so passe it seems. Also parties are larger and many are so out of control, fueled by the ever available, regardless of legal age, booze and drugs. Did you know that Americans will spend over 10 billion dollars on costumes? And the “little” kids? Now you get teen agers strutting door to door and almost demanding candies from the homeowners.
Too bad, somehow we as a society continue to lose what little innocence and faith that we once had.
BUT…. hope springs eternal in me and maybe we will get a gaggle of little tykes this year, heck I hope so because otherwise I will once again have to offer myself up as the consumer of massive amounts of candy!!!!!

take care out there,

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