Friday, 16 December 2011
Shortly after 10 PM, December 15, BC time Christine gave birth to a beautiful baby boy!
Ethan Daniel is my new grandson's name.
Christine, Ryan and new son are doing fine. I even got a chance to hear a very squawky baby over the phone, simply adorable.
Thursday, 15 December 2011
Good morning citizens, I will be working in Ottawa today.
I have two topics today, the Mission is over in Iraq news from Obama over the last few days, and the resistance to arrive of my grandchild.
First things first the Lil' Lwowski is on his or her own schedule and will exit the comfort of mommy's womb when the moment is right. I must say it is very odd for me to think of my little girl having a child of her own, but just before too many eyebrows raise and lips ask, "just how old is your daughter?", she is certainly past the age of majority, a few years older than her sister and been married for a couple years. Yes, the time is right for her and Ryan (the Big Lwowski?).
Nevertheless, it is still odd for me. I still remember the day that Christine emerged into this world, a magical moment indeed, all in one moment, a brand new person here and all of the wonder, awe, worry, anticipation, self doubt, hope, happiness and the glad-to-carry responsibility that a young father can hold. I must say, other than those evil teenage years, I have always enjoyed being Dad to Christine and Jennifer and although right now Christine believes that she will be pregnant forever, before she knows it, she will be a Mom and I will be a GrandFather.
Hang in the sweetheart, just another day or so.
In the meantime, here are a few quips for you and Ryan (other can read and enjoy too).
(There is a rather large BCC list to my morning emails composed of non-Distributel staff email addresses. Friends, family, legal counsel, etc)
-I heard of your newest development, congratulations on being creative!
-Sit down, I think it's time we had a talk, babies don't actually get delivered by a stork.
-If you think you are ready for a baby, try putting a pair of underwear on a cranky kangaroo. In the dark.
-In a few short years you'll be saying, "because I said so!".
There are probably more gems, but you two will discover them on your own.
And then there is Iraq.
And then there is democracy.
Now that the Iraq war is over, I imagine that means that objectives of the war have been satisfied and Iraq is settling in to it's new found democracy. First, how about a quick review of the Bush regime's reasons for the war and how we scored.
The number one reason was of course Regime Change. Because,
Saddam was evil, like Dr. Evil. Killed his own people, gassed them, violated their rights.
Saddam ignored UN resolutions calling for disarming and inspections of..
Weapons of mass destruction.
Saddam had ties to Al Qaeda and had something to do with 9/11.
Iraq was buying aluminum tubes.
We couldn't wait for a mushroom cloud.
Well let's do a really quick analysis of the reasons. Yep, a son of a bitch, but he always was, and the CIA and Cheney were his buddies and they supplied him with gas and tactical advice on how to deal with Kurd uprisings.
The whole WEAPONS OF DOOM thing was always bullshit. So reasons 2, 3, 5, and 6 are of the same animal excrement. The Yellow Cake Uranium story was a nice bit of fiction too. How did that one play out? Some used car dealer in Africa reported that his cousin that runs a scrapyard had a friend that was at a poker table with the guy that cleaned Saddam's chemical lab that heard a guy that traded his name for a number on the phone pretending to order a pizza and asked for extra anchovies. The code word for Yellow Cake Uranium! Oh yeah, Yellow Cake is lousy for use in a bomb. You'll actually want U235 enriched plutonium and some TNT and a stainless steel ball about 3 feet in diameter and one about 6 inches, but you didn't hear that from me.
And number 4.. Nope, there were no ties to AQ, and no involvement in 9/11. Even Cheney confirmed that in a CNN interview prior to the war, and even claimed that there was no reports of ties, yet we all heard both him and his lap dog George blame Saddam for it. We knew right away that those responsible were from Saudi Arabia.
Well it gave Bush something to do, much too much of a pussy to pull US troops out of SA, America industry would have crucified him, as it needs SA oil more than Iraq oil. Yeah baby, Bush was a war president -taking care of business, bring it on!
It was a good distraction too from a tanked economy, and the corporate horrors of Enron, Harken, Halliburton and Worldcom. And a very strong reason for the US was to maintain the strength of the Saudis. This can only be done by ensuring a permanent US military presence in the middle east, esp. in Saudi Arabia. The Saudi royals are hated by the people and the Saudi Gov't will fail without US military support.
Bush 41 used the Kuwait invasion as a foothold, King Saud was convinced by George that Saddam had amassed troops on the Saudi border ready for invasion, of course Russian satellite images showed only empty desert and now since the Iraq warm the US has permanent military bases in SA.
A few closers on democracy, these of course can only be learned on the road to developing democracy.
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough
to take everything you have.
-- Thomas Jefferson
A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people
may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.
-- Thomas Jefferson
Democracy substitutes election by the incompetent many for appointment by
the corrupt few.
-- George Bernard Shaw
They derive consolation from being supervised by thinking they have chosen their own supervisors. Every individual tolerates being tied down because he sees that it is not another man nor a class of people holding the end of the chain, but society itself...
At the present time, many people fall in with this type of compromise between a despotic administration and the sovereignty of the people and they think they have sufficiently safeguarded individual freedom when they surrendered it to a national authority. That is not good enough for me. The character of the master is much less important to me than the fact of obedience.
Have a good day.
Friday, 9 December 2011
Good morning folks,
I did not travel yesterday, hence no email alerting all where I was. I had travelled to Ottawa earlier in the week and left myself open to the option of traveling to BC should my daughter and her husband notify me that I am a grampa. The call has not come yet, so here I am at my desk.
This thought of new babies did have me start thinking about the environment that a new baby comes into and then I started thinking about the question, "who has been worse for our children, Andrew Wakefield, or Thomas Midgley Jr.?". Unlike my usual morning emails which are written in their entirety during flight, this one was actually written last night, except for this intro. I have just been too busy this A.M. to send it out.
I could include Jenny McCarthy in the question for variety and after all, she was a Playboy Playmate, but she is small spuds compared to Wakefield and Midgley.
Let's start with Midgley. This is the guy that put lead in gasoline for several decades. The reason for the additive was to prevent early ignition of the fuel-air mixture as it enters the hot upper cylinder on a vehicle engine. The lead made the mixture a bit less volatile, just enough to stop pre-ignition 'ping'. Of course a bit of alcohol would do the exact same thing. The difference is that alcohol is made of the elements Hydrogen, Carbon and Oxygen. When you burn it in an internal combustion engine you get water and carbon dioxide. The lead additive, Tertaethyllead, on the other hand is made of the elements Carbon, Hydrogen and Lead. When you burn it, the lead remains. Lead in the air, lead in our water, lead on sidewalks, lampposts, the crap gets everywhere. We continue to enjoy high atmospheric lead levels thanks to Midgley and the associated health problems including slow talking southerners.
Oh, but that's not all. Midgley also brought us synthesized Dichlorofluoromethane /Die-Kloro-Floro-Methane/ to work as a refrigerant or more precisely a phase change gas suitable to transport heat. Now granted that this first CFC (chlorofluorocarbon) was safer from an explosion than early refrigerator usage of ammonia, propane and sulpher dioxide, this and other CFCs did find their way into our high atmosphere and destroyed large parts of our protective ozone layer resulting in serious health problems.
Midgley may have had the greatest (worst) impact on the earth and atmosphere than any other single organism. Go Midgley!
And then there is Wakefield. You likely don't know of this *sswipe either. Wakefield is a former surgeon and medical researcher. He was the author of a 1998 fraudulent research paper that claimed a link between childhood vaccinations and Autism.
Yep, this is the guy that started the whole goddamned scare. That much since discredited paper used as its test subjects, 12 children that were recruited by a UK lawyer that was preparing a lawsuit against a vaccine manufacturer and Wakefield himself was poised to start a business of medical testing and 'litigation driven testing'. The tests were found by the British General Medical Council review board to contain falsehoods, that Wakefield failed in his duties and he was struck from the Medical Register.
His report effects linger on however, the anti-vaccine movement which is not based on real science but rather the spirited personal accounts of the likes of Jenny McCarthy that still spouts on about the discredited link between Autism and the MMR vaccine; and that wrestler turned governor turned conspiracy nut Jesse Ventura that would have us convinced that the gov't wants to thin out the human heard by way of Trojan Horse vaccines has convinced otherwise well meaning parents to not vaccinate.
Trust me, failing to vaccinate our children is extremely dangerous, Measles, Pertussis, Rubella, Polio, Tetanus, all kill children or leave them crippled. My friend Doug was born in 1951, he contracted Polio and was very lucky to survive, he does however have a left leg that has severely reduced muscle development. Jonas Salk developed the Polio vaccine in 1952. If you contract Tetanus even with modern treatment, I'll bet $20 against your $100 that you will die. Oh, and die in a really painful way. Last year there was a breakout of Whooping Cough (Pertussis) in Washington state in non-vaccinated children, that is what happens when we fail to vaccinate, children die.
Have a good day, vaccinate your children.
Jenny McCarthy was awarded the James Randi Educational Foundation Pigasus Award (a pseudoscience contribution award) for 'The performer that fooled the greatest number of people with the least effort'. Go Jenny! With her appearances on TV shows d'jour she has convinced millions to forgo vaccinations without ANY scientific evidence.
Tuesday, 6 December 2011
Good morning folks,
More shaking up of my tried and true schedule. Heading off to the Ottawa office for the day.
So now that Toronto's war on the automobile is over, Mayor Rob "F*cking" Ford..
--The mayor renamed himself recently during a call to 911. I believe it was, "Don't you know who I am? I am Rob "F*cking" Ford, the Mayor of this city!". Prior, he was known as Rob "Fat F*ck" Ford--
..but I digress, Mayor Ford has launch the new WAR ON CHILDREN.
If my column was on CNN, I would have special graphics floating across the screen. WAR ON CHILDREN.
That's right kids, the Mayor himself has set target on you. Starting this summer if you want to go swimming at the outdoor wading and swimming pools, you'll need to pay $2. This will be interesting economics, as most of the outdoor wading and swimming pools have no staff to collect the $2, just some staff to come by and check the water chemistry. Perhaps one of the newly unemployed city staff can volunteer?
Next, if you kids think you can just hang out at the library and sign out documentaries, learning material and other non-feature DVDs, think again.. The libraries will adopt a new BlockBuster video style DVD rental business, this comes at a great time as the BlockBuster store near Etobicoke's Burnhamthorpe Road library has just closed, I'm sure the library can hire the unemployed manager on the cheap!
Oh yes, in an odd bit of twisty logic, Budget Chief Michael Del Grande notes that we are primarily English speaking in Toronto, and so he logically questions why the libraries should be spending money on ESL programs. "We're spending tons of money on ESL, should we not have a discussion on spending money on non-English resources?". Perhaps he doesn't know what ESL means. I can't make this stuff up.
And lastly, ambulances will get [to their destinations] slower. They are already 3 minutes longer than their target, and with the budget reductions they can only get slower.
On wait, that's a war on us all.
Have a good day.
Monday, 28 November 2011
Good day gentle readers, this week I will be working in Alberta, first Edmonton and then Calgary. I will be accessible via email and cell and Lync with some frequency.
Sorry in advance for the extra wordiness today. Am sitting on a long flight to Edmonton and the words kept flowing although I did take a break to eat some pancakes and watch a movie.
So, today's topic? IMF plans for a 600 billion € loan for Italy, Spain? NATO air strikes on Pakistan? Egypt's political Frankenstein, their electoral process?
Nope, nope, nope.
We have a mouse. Not the Royal We, not God and I, not you and I, not you, but me -- Sharlene and I. He showed up quite recently and sans invitation. My first indication was Sharlene calling from the kitchen, "Daniel, we have a mouse!". I did appreciate that she stated "we" instead of "you" which did make it our problem instead of solely mine.
I reviewed the evidence that lead to Sharlene's conclusion and although I did not perform an extensive examination of the feces being pointed to, I was satisfied that they belonged to a member of the Mus family of small rodents.
Small tangent here, the common house mouse is one of perhaps thirty members of the rodent family genus, Mus. they showed up somewhere between 10 and 5 million years ago during the late Miocene period. Hey, that's almost 10,000 in fundamentalist years. (not picking a fight with Creationists, I think that we have evolved past that :)
Some weeks ago I had filled with expanding foam a few large air gaps in the basement wall where AC lines, a few water pipes and some electrical connections passed through, so I re-examined the basement for possible fortification gaps, infiltration passages as Carlo the exterminator might call them. Yep, you got holes, as his straight talking sidekick Bob calls them. I had Carlo and Bob around earlier as I had some squirrels in the attack. I had chased them out by placing a ghetto blaster tuned to 107.1, volume at max up in the attic. Bob scampered up on the roof to repair the missing shingle and the small hole the squirrels fashioned. Bob is one of those sure footed guys that can work at the edge of a roof in the rain up 25 feet off the concrete patio without flinching.
For this current foreign incursion, my sense of master of the house, lord of the manor, king of the castle actually prevents me from calling in an exterminator after all by all indications there is but one small mouse. I detected no problems with the holes that I filled, but it looks like I have some gaps around the dryer vent duct, and the vent cover itself fits poorly. This will need to be patched up on the weekend.
My attack started out last night utilizing what has been described by Jennifer as the only acceptable method, the humane mouse trap. This is a plastic contraption, effectively a box with one open end and a door that swings down insecurely should a mouse venture inside and cause the center of balance. Yes, I said insecurely.
I had placed some small pieces of nacho chip, pretzel, and Cheetos! into the enclosed end and placed two of these contraptions on what I figured was a likely mouse pathway. And then went to sleep. 6 A.M. I opened one eye. Slid one leg out carefully to the floor. Then the next. I quietly creeped downstairs to the front line. Joined the Sgt. in the trench and asked for a report. Seems there had been activity but all was quiet now.
The doors were both closed. Had I caught two? I picked up one then the other, giving a slight side to side shake, I determined that both were devoid of Mus musculus. I opened each to find that they were both empty.. really empty, no mammals no chips no Cheetos! there was however an appreciative note thanking me for the Cheetos!.
So next I am afraid that on my return from points west I will need to bring out the lethal ordinance. --the Victory brand wooden and spring mousetrap. Recognized by all from its large, red 'V' inked into the wood platen. And this is my regret. You see I have no desire to kill a mouse, spiders, hell yes, but not mice.
We had a mouse once when we lived in Etobicoke, but I caught him with a pair of tongs --really -- and tossed him out the front door to the bewilderment of Nova the cat who watched the entire display from the sidelines. We had a mouse in the spring and I had (the very bad) thought that I could simply vacuum up the little feller once I cornered him in the powder room. It was a quick decision and thought it would survive the process and I would simply free him outside. Poor guy died somewhere in transit through the vacuum hose.
And now I will need to engage in this severely unfair and lopsided contest again. I would feel better if was a fair fight, if the mouse was 6 feet tall and sported a few hundred pounds of rippling muscle then I could claim, "hey, it was him or me, could have gone either way!". But no, not a fair fight at all.
I think that somewhere in my mind, I will be thinking of Mr. Jiggles the mouse that befriended Delequa in The Green Mile or the lovable Pinky of Pinky and The Brain fame.
"Gee Brain, what do you want to do tonight?"
"The same thing we do every night Pinky, try to take over the world!"
and Amos in Ben and Me; Atomic Mouse; Mighty Mouse; Basil and Dawson; Three Blind Mice; Socrates from Willard --oh wait, he was a rat; Benjy mouse and Frankie mouse in Hitchhikers' Guide to the Galaxy; Jerry Mouse of Tom and Jerry; The Dormouse in Alice in Wonderland; the Hickory Dickory Dock mouse; Itchy on The Itchy & Scratchy Show; I would have mentioned Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse but the Disney guys are real sticklers on copyright infringement; Mortimer Mouse in Outland; Morton the Mouse in Horton Hears a Who; Pixie and Dixie in The Huckleberry Hound Show; Speedy Gonzales --damned annoying little bastard; The Space Mice from Voltron: Defender of the Universe;
and I just can't remember the name of the mouse or the book that I read when I was maybe 8 about a mouse that drove around in a toy metal car.. nope.. It's gone, but I'll be thinking of him too.
Have a good week.
Thursday, 24 November 2011
Good morning good people,
In the "I just can't make this stuff up" department, 7 members of an Ohio Amish community were arrested yesterday on a criminal complaint charging them with cutting off hair and beards of fellow Amish over a religious spat stemming from a division in their group back in 2005.
Seems the men conspired to carry out a series of assaults against fellow bearded Amish chums with whom they were having a dispute, presumably religious in origin?
The 7 restrained several other men, their number a bit unclear and cut off their beards and hair with scissors and battery-powered clippers. In additional to the hair clipping, other assorted injury was sustained to all concerned as well as others that attempted to stop the attack.
Officials said the attacks were meant to humiliate the victims --no duh! The attackers have been charged with religiously inspired hate crimes and face a maximum penalty of life in prison.
And now, let's rewind. "battery powered clippers" ? This alone makes the story interesting and one wonders about the underlying disputes. Since the Ohio Amish tend to shun modern technology like the electric toaster and any colour save black and white, one wonders if using the using the battery operated device was a deliberate irony?
One does wonder.
But how about that life imprisonment risk? I am all for laws that treat racial and religious intolerance harshly but I question the use of this law in this circumstance, let the punishment fit the crime. Perhaps a beard shaving of the accused upon a guilty verdict accompanied by a yellow lightning bolt tattoo on their foreheads identifying to all that they have embraced the Englishmen's demon electricity?
Speaking of religion in the news.. The courts have reached a decision, Canada's Anti-Polygamy laws are constitutional despite the constitutions provisions for religious freedom.
I think that perhaps some persons are confused by Canada's laws about religious freedom. Our laws don't say that you can do anything your religion dictates without regard to society and acceptable conduct.
Our laws such as the Charter's section 2 and 7 protect your right to your beliefs, and the autonomy of your person, section 1 however allows reasonable limits on those rights as long as those limits are demonstrably justifiable in a free and democratic society (I think that is the text) so even if your particular brand of faith requires you to shave the head of your neighbours when in conflict with them, it is a reasonable limit for our laws to say, 'fraid not, your religious freedom ends at the tip of my nose.
Have a good day.
Thursday, 17 November 2011
Good morning folks, Not withstanding my earlier email (a legalese way of saying this new info trumps the previous) I will be working in the Nation's Capital.
Here's a shout-out to Toronto's Manpreet, Happy Birthday!
So I was going to write about this barrage of hoax emails that certain school principals, wine merchants, retired firemen, grocers, heavy equipment sales guys, computer repair dudes, data system managers (the guys I play Racquetball with on Wednesdays and Sundays not to be confused with the other set of people that I play Squash with on Mondays and some Saturdays) forward to me.
Particularly George. George sends me two kinds of emails. Porn, because apparently George thinks that there is a shortage of quality porn on the net, and should he find some, promptly forwards it along to everyone he knows. I have tried to explain to George that the Internet is actually assembled from collections of porn, and that all other activity accounts for only perhaps 40% combined, and if I wanted to surf porn, I am more than capable. But send, send, send he continues.
The other email the George sends out is right wing fundamentalist Christian propaganda. Mostly false attacks on Christianity and why everyone should vote Republican. I was going to explore the underlying strategy of straw man arguments and false flag attacks and the odd pairing of George's two hobbies then something caught my attention this morning.
Schools banning balls.
Eh? Oh yes, schools in Ottawa and Toronto have started banning baseballs, soccer balls, volleyballs, footballs, basketballs, etc.. Except.. The NerfBall. Oh, and a school in Ste. Catherines has banned cartwheels and other gymnastics.
The reason of course is that someone could, and a few have, got hurt.
I find this absurd. Yes, one could get hurt, that of course is not the intended result of playing with a ball, but shit happens. That is part of growing up, of learning.
When I was in grade 4 and my brother David was in grade 6, we were playing baseball at recess back at St. Pat's in Lethbridge. I was on 3rd base waiting for a hit to bring me in when a pop fly when up towards David playing shortstop. Bam! David tried to catch the ball with his face. Instead of bringing in the run, I went to see if he was okay. Bloody lip. He lived.
Two things were learned that day. David never tried to catch a baseball with his face again, if it had been a NerfBall, that lesson would have been missed. And I learned that tending to a hurt brother was better than bringing in another run.
We do our children a severe disservice if we shield them from all chance of injury, hurt feelings, disappointments, failure. When I was kid I played Hockey and Basketball (I used to be taller). When we lost, we lost, no "Yay, we're all winners" bull crap, loosing sucks, that's why we try to win. A child's brain is still in that rapid development stage, when it is taking all in and developing the base set of Stimuli/Process/Responses. If we delay all of the best lessons till adulthood we will end up with some really screwed up adults.
Getting hit with a ball in the face hurts, that's why you should avoid it.
Have a good day, throw a ball at some kid.
Friday, 11 November 2011
Good morning folks,
I will be working in Montréal today.
In 1915 Canadian doctor and Lietenant Colonel John McRae wrote In Flanders Fields the day after the death of his friend Lieutenant Alexis Helmer. However it was American Professor and Humanitarian Moina Michael that we owe the tradition of wearing poppies to honour and remember our fallen soldiers and injured soldiers.
Michael had written a poem in response to McRae's, We Shall Keep the Faith and after the end of World War I she had taught a class of disabled servicemen and realized the need for financial and occupational support for veterans. She pursued the idea of selling silk poppies to raise the needed funds.
In Canada we continue that tradition on Remembrance Day and in the U.S. on Memorial Day.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from falling hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
Have a good day.
Thursday, 3 November 2011
Good morning folks,
I will be working in the nation's capital today.
Damn..got to the gate and my previously upgraded ticket (on points) was reverted back to econ as the airline had switched to a smaller plane.
But the system had just stripped the seat (was 1A, Airbus 319 has a 1D and F but no row 1 on the port side) without regard to status of the flier's Aeroplan status.
The gate agent realized that I am super elite and the system kept an elite upgrade in 1F. Oops.
So the agent had to call the other passenger up to the gate and inform her that her upgrade was being rolled back because a super elite was present and wanted it.
Of course the gal, tall slim 20's blond with icy stare, slightly tilted her head down and gave me that, "are you proud of what you have done?" look.
Have a good day and remember, no eye contact, just keep moving :)
In the news of the weird department, I have been alive for 5 decades and in that time I figure I have burned through somewhere around 150 tooth brushes. This is a non-audited number --just off the cuff, but the point is, none of them ever exploded. Really.
But apparently the Colgate-Palmolive 'Motion' electric toothbrush explodes during regular use. Heath Canada is warning Canadians to stop using them. The company states that no long-term injuries have resulted and don't really understand what all the fuss is about. "it's not like any permanent teeth were blown out by the explosions" stated a company representative. Okay, I made that part up.
Hey, do you have a bunch of unwanted and extra cats in your house? Now you can get rid of those broken and unused cats and get cash! That's right, Cash4Cats! Just place them in our specially designed cat envelope, drop in a mail box and in 4 to 6 weeks you'll get CASH!
Thursday, 27 October 2011
Good morning folks, I will be working in Montréal today.
Have you hear the word Agreeance lately?
Are we in agreeance here? I have heard this word a couple of times in the last bit. Most recently in a Judge Judy case where the Plaintiff used it to describe the meeting of the minds that existed between herself and the Defendant. Judy snapped back in usual style, "Agreeance is not a word!".
Sorry Judge, it is a word, it is however obsolete and archaic; it really has not been used since the 18th century but lately it seems to have a bit of a resurgence.
I think that Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit (? What an awkward name for a band) used it a couple years back in an environment speech and was so terribly offended when the press flambeau'd him.
I mean if a fond wishes to effect an acucian on words since not uttered on moons many passed, what not I were affect? Friends, countrymen lift ones eyes to welkin present and aecon such talu opportunities, albeit all sundry!
Annoying, isn't it Fred? Do try to stay in the 21st century.
I was going to slip in a reference to Wes Borland leaving Limp B, and I did wonder, what the hell was with that two hand banging the hell out of the guitar instead of using a pick about? But I won't bother since it is unlikely most will know what the hell I am talking about.
Hey, what happened to the 40 billion dollars that the New York Fed sent to Iraq during the early part of Operation: Economy Killer? That was the largest cash transfer in history and no one seems to know where it went. There is a current investigation underway, but so far The Special Inspector General's office finds it not suspicious that all pallets of cash were received in Iraq by always the same guy. A sub-contracting language translator that used to live in the States and now lives in Dubai.
Similarly the U.S. Department of Defense says it is expected that with proper retirement planning and frugal use of coupons even an E6 can retire with millions in gold storage. Nothing suspicious there either. I think they were just begging for trouble when they were only concerned with counting the pallets of cash --a little too aggregate for me thanks.
Have a great day.
Friday, 21 October 2011
Good morning folks, Just to keep everyone on their toes, I am traveling on a Friday, 'stead of a Thursday.
I really have no desire to have my weekly email become an obituary column, but the world just keeps serving up some notable passings.
This week in the Lifeless, deceased, expired, departed, gone, no more, late, perished, fallen, slain, slaughtered, killed, murdered, extinct, dead as a door nail, six feet under, pushing up daisies list..
That wacky, self effacing, epaulette wearing, snazzy dressing Muammar Gaddafi. Reportedly Gaddafi was killed after a brief exchange of gunfire between him and members of the NTC Rebellion, aka, The Revolutionary Forces.
In an odd copycat of Saddam Hussein, Gaddafi was also found huddled in the ground in a concrete culvert, it was also reported that one of the armed Revolutionaries hit Gaddafi with a shoe. I read this is an insult in the Arab world. I thought that was a bit of redundant journalism since I cannot think of any culture where smacking out a guy with a shoe is an act of endearment. Well maybe only one. The safe word is, "banana".
For those that are not familiar, Gaddafi and Libya.. Everyone and his brother has laid claim to Libya at one time or another, Spain, France, Britain, Turks, Ottoman, Italy.. I apologize to any one that I may have missed. In recent memory, the future of the region of Africa known as Libya was referred to the United Nations at the end of WWII. This resulted in a resolution for Libyan independence a national assembly elected Mohammed Idris (aka Idris I) as King. Idris formally declared the independent state of Libya in December 1951.
He then proceeded to rule in the old fashioned and traditional monarch style, with little regard to democratic ideals.. Yeah okay, with no regard. I am pretty sure that the only income that Libyan had at that time was some rent collected from U.S. And British airbases and some international aide.
Then oil was discovered in 1959.
Many of the aforementioned countries of occupation and colonialization issued a collective, "Doh!".
The next 10 years saw a rather lazy move to economic independence and when Idris was off visiting Turkey, 27 year old Gaddafi, pardon me, Captain Gaddafi led a bloodless coup and took the throne.
And with the same regard for democratic ideals as his predecessor, Gaddafi held that office until yesterday. During his tenure he waged war, endorsed international terrorism and oh yes, at some point he gave himself a promotion to Colonel.
What point am I trying to make?
Simply that Libya has no experience with Democracy. The peoples of Libya have no experience with Democracy. But they do have much experience with occupation, oppression, violence and factional disputes.
I fear that the end of Gaddafi is no end to the problems in Libya, but rather we will see Libya descend into civil war between several groups pursuing control, not the least of which will be religious extremists.
Don't worry, it's still a great planet for the arms dealers and the AK-47.
Have a good day. Keep the safety switch on.