Sunday, June 1, 2014

Sunday musings

As a person lives long enough, they can and usually do change their opinions on a wide range of matters as they get better informed and experience the good and bad of life.
At one time, when I was a young and callow youth, I questioned the moral and actual need for well armed military's for countries around the world. Surely man was rational enough and finally mature enough after the two World Wars to settle problems through dialogue.
This was before Viet Nam, Cambodia, the Balkens, countless vicious genocides and wars in Africa to name a small number of the conflicts since those early days of my youth.
In this world we live in, armies are needed.
Ones that are properly lead and used for the betterment and protection of the society they are supposed to serve and in the case of countries like the USA, Canada and some European ones, this is the case.
That being said, it is horrible the way the politicians in two countries noted - Canada and the USA, treat their veterans. In Canada, benefits and services and service offices themselves are either reduced or eliminated all the while the federal government spends millions of dollars on TV advertising glibly spinning false facts about how the government is actually doing more thank you very much. All the while the Minister for Veterans Affairs cowardly runs away from a wife of a veteran at a news conference. How can he look himself in the mirror? He lives a privileged life paid for by the veterans he abuses.
In the USA, the Veteran Affairs (VA) saw its head resign after more and more stories emerge about waiting list for services getting longer and longer all the while his executive team members get higher and higher performance bonuses. In America the public reveres the military veterans through a commemorative day, countless tributes and programs but the government seems to be doing the "Canuck thing" in ignoring those that gave their all to protect freedom as North America values it.
These politicans are people of integrity?
Don't think so and their actions seem to prove it.
In elections to the European Government last week, far right wing political parties made large inroads in actual representation. They are lead by people who believe that immigrants are the cause for all the social ills in their respective countries. They fear Islam. They fear Jews. They fear globalization.
It appears that Europeans are not interested in living a Caliphate after all. It is shame that it has come to this. I like 95% of liberal policy. I support gender equality, gay marriage, environmental protection, redistribution of wealth, opposition to capital punishment, etc. I'm just not delusional enough to think that all populations can achieve this. The era of thinking that countries steeped in denying the rights of the weak and oppressed and "different" would change is over. Afghanistan will not change nor will Iraq, Egypt...the list is large and will probably never change.
Sad, truly sad.
And individuals by themselves can doing nothing to change this. Instead they celebrate "victories" unleashed on so called "social media" platforms against companies or individuals that offend their sensibilities. Hello Lululemon for its see through yoga pants or Kraft for its KD yellow colouring.
These same individuals are solely responsible for the re-emergence of measles in North America these days. Those self absorbed phone clutching helicoptering parents who believe any and everything they read on Google (because if it is on Google - it HAS to be true right?) have blindly accepted the outright lies of people like Ms. McCarthy who at one point claimed that the measle vaccine made all children likely to become autistic. So, being like lemmings, they stopped having their children inoculated and of course measles has come back with a vengeance. They say they have the sole right to determine what is good for their kids - but hey, when their decisions can and does affect the health and safety of others - then they are in the wrong and should be held accountable.
These same parents have become so adept at sloughing off parental responsibility of teaching the children lessons on morals and right vs wrong to teachers and then they have the gall to be outraged when little Billy or Sue falls through the cracks! Since when are teachers parent replacements? They are and were supposed to teach, now they are expected to be absentee parents, baby sitters and sport and life coaches.
That is not what they signed up for folks.
In Lihue, Hawaii for example, a judge sentenced a Hawaii man to one year of probation and a $200 fine for making his son walk a mile home from school as a form of discipline. The judge, K. Watanabe called the punishment "old-school" and no longer appropriate, the Garden Island local newspaper reported Thursday.  
So, who is doing parenting today?
Go figure.
The start of World Cup football is coming soon and Brazil which has spent almost 12 billion USA dollars on facility prep has by many accounts, failed miserably in doing so. Yes the games will happen but like what happened in Socci with the latest Winter Olympics, incomplete facilities, roads, lodgings will be witness to the event. That brings up a question that more and more people are finally asking and demanding an answer to. And that is, where the heck is all the money coming from and to whom is it going to in these spectaculars? The Olympic royalty, oops, Organizing Committe demands obscene amounts of money from those cities and countries that want to host this every 4 year event. The same with FIFA and football. And what does the average citizen and taxpayer get in return for these incredible outlays of cash?
Nothing except higher taxes that never go away.
Perhaps this style of pomp and pageantry is doomed and many say, not a minute too soon.
Tremendous waste of money that could and should be spent better.
Oh, we forget - the ego of the politicians is more important when they discuss their legacy - right?
Well, here on my Island, planning is almost finished for the trip east to the Prairie flatlands soon. Strange to call that "east" when one has lived almost all theirs lives out "west" before moving further west to the island. That being said, plenty of mosquito spray has been purchased, yards and yards of mosquito netting  packed and plenty of warning to one and all to flee the area before we show up!
Meanwhile, a small glimpse of my island for you...

take care out there,

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