Monday, 14 April 2014

I Have No Words

From Here
I can only shake my head in wonder.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Answer to Warren's Last Question

Warren asked: "Would you apply your criticism to Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada - and many Canadian Governments, both Liberal and Conservative, over many years?"

Hi Warren,
Yes, but perhaps even more so. It seems to me that the Great Society and the War on Poverty, whatever we see as the unintended consequences looking back, were sincere attempts to help the, ”targets,” if you like, of the programs. In other words, I believe those policies were put into place, however badly they may have turned out,  with the sincere belief they would be effective in accomplishing the idealistic goals of those who envisioned them. The cultural results as argued in West’s book, I don’t believe, were what was hoped to be accomplished.
Policies regarding our own Native Peoples, on the other hand had little if anything to do with our concern for their wellbeing. I don’t believe those who put into place those policies on residential schools, for instance, had any thought at all about the true welfare of the native children sent to them. Rather, they tried to take away their language, identity and culture.

This goes to my harping, on several occasions, about, “bandwagons.” It was about the same time as so-called, “progressives” were on the eugenics bandwagon, when Margaret Sanger, founder of Planned Parenthood and others thought the way to a better society was to eliminate the weak, the infirm and the, “less fit” races . We may look back on it now, raise our noses, and sniff that WE would never be a part of such things, but I’m afraid that many who think that self-righteous way now may very well have been right onboard, back in the day. Forced sterilization continued in Alberta until quite recent memory.
These programs were nothing to do with the care and welfare of those targeted, but everything to do with an elitist view of bettering society, a view and practise that we now see as entirely unacceptable. They may have sincerely thought that this was for the betterment of society, but it was completely selfish of them, in that they thought only of bettering their own society.

Are there issues today that I see in the same light? Yes. Being the right-wing conservative that I am I see the death of freedom of conscious and the call to spend billions on, “climate change” as current issues upon which people may someday look back and see our mistakes. Gay marriage? Not really. Some claim that gay marriage will lead to the disintegration of the family, but that horse left the barn ages ago with the acceptance of common-law relationships as equivalent to marriage.
Not sure this addresses the entire issue. I got your comment in a motel in Medicine Hat. I am writing this answer in a Super 8 in Lethbridge. As far as solutions to the problems resulting from our treatment of our Native Peoples, that's another matter, and I'm afraid my ideas would be totally politically uncorrect.
Anyway, those are a few of my thoughts. Hope we're still friends.

Take Care,

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

All The Best Intentions?

I couldn't help but be touched by excerpts from a new book by former Congressman and retired Lieutenant Army Colonel Allen West, an African American himself, “Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Faith, Family and Freedom.”
How misguided policies, however well intended, (if that is what they are, or were) can have serious and unforeseen consequences difficult to undo. Residential schools in our own history, "climate change" or shutting down freedom of speech and conscience in the name of tolerance in our own generation?

From here...

LBJ and the Great Society promoted the disintegration of the black community. 

“When I revisit my neighborhood in Atlanta, I see the blight facing most urban neighborhoods: Section 8 housing, food stamps, EBT card signs, and the breakdown of the family. Of all the consequences of the Great Society programs and the War on Poverty, intended or otherwise, the destruction of the black family has been the most disastrous. More than 70 percent of black children are born outside of marriage. That is an epidemic. And if you take into account the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s statistics that close to three hundred thousand black babies are aborted annually, are we looking at racial genocide?  

The brilliant idea for this tragedy came from the progressive socialists of the Johnson administration who thought government should provide welfare payments to women who purposely had children out of wedlock and did not seek to get married or have a male living in the same home. 

In other words, the Johnson administration was promoting the disintegration of the moral fiber of the black community. Furthermore, the government would send our social workers to inspect the households and ensure there were no males residing in the home, because if there were, the benefits would be cut off. As long as women remained single, they could stay on these programs and receive free health care, housing, and babysitting services for life.

The most dangerous consequence of President Johnson’s misguided policy is the abdication of individual responsibility in the black community.” 

“When Booker T. Washington talked about education, self-reliance and entrepreneurship, he was describing economic independence. But the Great Society has left a legacy of economic dependence, a new form of slavery, and to me, a far more dangerous one, because it destroys the will and determination to excel. As President Franklin Roosevelt said, welfare is “a subtle destroyer of the human spirit.” And that is what I see when I go back to the ol’ Fourth Ward and drive along Boulevard… 

The Great Society has turned out to be a big lie, and sadly, those in my community who bought into it are stuck on the twenty-first-century plantation.”

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Update on Malaysian Airlines Flight 370

In light of the seemingly endless coverage, especially by CNN, who seem to think there is no other news, nothing else happening worth covering, in the entire world, I present this update from my brother in Ontario:

I'd like to you tell what a special morning I had.  It started as usual, up at 7:30, into my pajama bottoms and housecoat, toast with peanut butter and jam, coffee and while the wife is puttering around preparing herself for work, I sit on the loveseat and look over the beautiful property we are privileged to enjoy.  I kiss her on each cheek, then stand on the porch while she backs out of the driveway.  As her car turns the corner and disappears from view, I do as I have done every morning for the last two weeks and head to the bathroom, scouring it for any possible debris from the missing Malaysian Airliner.  I check the light receptacles, the ceiling vent/fan, the toilet tank, behind the garbage basket, the toilet paper roll, the sink counter top, drawers and cupboard.  Looked everywhere, found nothing.  The phone rang.  It was a guy from Zhangjawanzhen, China, a suburb of the capital, Beijing.  He said, " Foo yung chew pow yen yong kow yang dung", which roughly translated means, he was studying space satellite images of the south Indian Ocean searching for evidence of a downed jet airliner, then he Googled my address.  Next, he asked me to go back to the room I'd just left as he saw a body of water with what appeared to be a airplane door floating on the surface.  I politely excused myself, placed his call on hold, went back to the bathroom and drew back the shower curtain.  Lo-and-behold, sure enough my wife, thoughtful as always, had drawn a bath for me and a hairbrush had slipped off the ledge and was bobbing on top.  I returned to his call and told him what I had uncovered and he said he would call the Australian Prime Minister and take back what he'd earlier reported to him.  I thought, you know, what a wonderful world we live in, I feel so very safe knowing half a world away someone is keeping an eye on me.  Then he said," U 2 phat 4 sum grey guy, nee wooze wate."  This did not need translating.  I swore at him and slammed the phone down as hard as I could.  It's a small world after all.   
Some may see this as cruel, but I thought it extremely funny. Perhaps it's just my warped sense of humour. Forgive me if you disagree.

Take Care

Monday, 24 March 2014

Divine or Man-Made?

Whiskey Tango FoxtrotMarch 23, 2014

“Religion is founded on a notion that it has teachings or scriptures from a divine (supernatural) source, and this source is provides insights into ultimate truths which can not be discerned by mere mortals investigating nature.
Any religious institution which believes it needs to modernise its beliefs is admitting that its beliefs have never had such a divine source – they are man-made and, like all man-made things, need to be modernised periodically. Consequently, that institution no longer represents a spiritual belief system, but is simply a political organisation which pretends to be founded on spiritual beliefs.”
Indeed! Churches are supposed to be like prophets crying in the wilderness, calling on “polite society” to repent. Welby, Schori & their ilk have completely turned the tables. Rather than seeking to reform and amend our lives to God’s plan, they are working overtime to change God to fit their own little boxes." (emphasis mine, JK)

Says a lot, I think,

Take Care,

h/t MCJ

Thursday, 13 February 2014

So Much For The (Hopes of) New Atheism.

I post this without much comment, mainly because the story itself is its own comment.
According to a new survey by the National Science Foundation, nearly half of all Americans say astrology, the study of celestial bodies’ purported influence on human behavior and worldly events, is either “very scientific” or “sort of scientific.”
By contrast, 92 percent of the Chinese public think horoscopes are a bunch of baloney.
What’s more alarming, researchers show in the 2014 Science and Engineering Indicators study, is that American attitudes about science are moving in the wrong direction. Skepticism of astrology hit an all-time high in 2004, when 66 percent of Americans said astrology was total nonsense. But each year, fewer and fewer respondents have dismissed the connections between star alignment and personality as bunk.
Not surprisingly, those with less science education and less “factual knowledge” have become increasingly willing to accept astrology as legitimate science, with 65 percent of such individuals considering the pseudo-science credible in 2012, up from 48 percent in 2010.
Young people are also especially inclined to offer astrology scientific legitimacy, with a majority of Americans ages 18 to 24 considering the practice at least “sort of” scientific, and the 25-34 age group is not far behind them.
Some might feel optimistically, that as people become more 'enlightened' and turn away from what we might call traditional religious faith, society as a whole will become more rational; more scientific-thinking.

This seems to bear out the paraphrase of G. K. Chesterton that if people stop believing in God, they don't believe in nothing; they'll believe in anything.

Take Care

h/t the mcj

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Just Observin'

Nigeria has just passed a rather over-the-top law regarding homosexual behaviour.
From Here...

While not at all attemping to defend or justify the law itself or the penalties applied, I find it interesting to consider some of the comments condemning President Goodluck Jonathan. I'm sure they would reflect the prevailing opinion of a wide cross-section of our own society.

But here's the intersting thing, as I see it; until the 1960's, Canada, the UK and the US had similar laws on their own books - similar in the sense that they would be classified as, "anti-gay" by today's standards, if not similar in force or application.

This brings me back to what I have called, "cultural," or, "chronological arrogance." It is the tendency we have to look back and condemn previous generations for their attitudes on various subjects, inferring that we would have been differfent. It assumes that we now have everything right, while previous generations were somehow blind or mistaken.

With regard to those who so roundly condemn Mr Jonathan, his detractors might also condemn Winston Churcdhill, John F. Kennedy, Franklin Roosevelt or Lester Pearson, all of whom led the governments of their respective countries while these, "anti-gay" laws were on the books. Granted, these men may not have been responsible for the passage of these laws, but couldn't, we might ask, they have seen their injustice and gotten rid of them?

Could it be possible that some future generation will look back at ours and wonder how we could have gotten some aspect of our own time so terribly wrong; something that by the consensus of society is now considered entirely correct, but which future generations will see was badly mistaken? Climate change for instance? Even in myh own time I have seen panic predictions come and go on climate, food, over-population, Y2K and more.

Like I say, I just see things and wonder...

Take Care