Canada – King of Asbestos

Posted June 24, 2011 on 3:00 pm | In the category Canada, Environment | by Mackenzie Brothers

Virtually every one knows that asbestos is a very dangerous product that has to be handled with extreme care. At the very least, it has to be labelled as dangerous and in need of special handling – if not simply banned – because it will kill you if you breathe it in any kind of quantities. There was a time when this was not so clear, and mining communities around the world – especially in Quebec – made a decent if hard living mining it, until the workers began dying of lung congestion. Now, decades later, billions are being spent removing asbestos from buildings in Canada. It can only be done safely with great caution by workers dressed in protective clothing, and it must be done if any building with asbestos in it is torn down, renovated or if the asbestos has been stirred up in some way. It’s the law.
And now even the lumbering the United Nations bureaucracy has concluded that at the very least asbestos must be labelled as a dangerous material needing special handling, in particular when it is exported. But that decree did not pass, since the vote required unanimity, and, despite the fact that even a rising economic power like India unexpectedly decided to vote in favour and take the economic hit, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Canada turned it down. Yes, shamefully, Canada, which knows all too well how dangerous this material is, decided it would rather protect the jobs of the 500 asbestos miners still working in Quebec rather than act with any decency. It is a good question of what the newly elected conservative majority would not do for money, or votes. The leader of the opposition socialist party called this vote the height of hypocrisy. He was being too generous

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Canada and the USA: Two Countries, Two Elections

Posted June 22, 2011 on 11:57 pm | In the category Canada, Election, Politics | by Jeff

Canada recently completed a national election campaign that lasted all of 6 weeks. While the results were disappointing to many and the campaign was as nasty as some of the U.S.’s, at least the pain was short-lived. Canada’s winner, incumbent Prime Minister Stephen Harper sat in the driver’s seat as Canadians tried to determine if Michael Ignatieff was “Canadian enough” (he wasn’t) and not an American in sealskin clothing (apparently he was – and lost very badly).

The U.S. faces a similar campaign in tone but not in length. Is Obama a real American? Is he a Muslim in Christian clothing? The campaign will focus in subtle ways on those issues but the real issues may well be his lackluster handling of the economy and his seeming willingness to give away the ranch to the Republicans without a fight. We shall see.

But the real point of all of this is to wonder why we need 20 months of increasingly idiotic campaigning for the American people to make a semi-informed judgment. At the end of the day many – perhaps most – people will vote based on minimal understanding of how we got to where we are and what is in the best interest of the country. Why not do it in six weeks rather than drive a portion of the country insane with a campaign based on moronic slogans, outright lies and subtle racism.

Canada did it in 6 weeks and retained a Prime Minister as mediocre as what we are likely to end up with after 20 months and literally billions of wasted dollars.

2 Comments

a southern and northern intellectual analyze the Stanley Cup

Posted June 2, 2011 on 10:23 pm | In the category Canada, Sports, U.S. Foreign Policy, Uncategorized | by Mackenzie Brothers

#1 – a southerner: Ok i propose 2 loonies pergame and a 5 loonie bonus for winning the series. I understand you might be nervous and not want to bet. That is ok. Let me know.

#2 – a northerner: I doubt that you can afford loonies, so I suspect a trick.  But nevertheless I accept. I’ll be travelling south for a couple of days to see how the other half lives, and spend some toonies in the banana belt.  Will be back on Wednesday in time to see the first loonie go my way.

#1Some trick… The loonie costs me $1.2. Damn. That harper guy must know his stuff.. Playoff hockey is unbelievable.

#2 – after game 1: Why not just pay me now and relax?  Even Obama is refusing to make a bet with  Harper – perhaps he never heard of hockey (or Harper), or perhaps he doesn’t want to fork over anything  to a functioning economy – but you can’t back out now just because this is so one-sided. Estimates here are 7-0 for the first gameif theAmurcan goalie didn’t have a good evening, of course not as good as the Canuck one, one but still.  But can’t you find a power play coach down there? How about double or nothing?  It won’t be a sweep however since we want a couple of more home games and have promised to donate the proceeds to Winnipeg.

#1Between the ref missing the very obvious offside on the goal and the canucks resorting to biting the opponents, it does not look good for the Boston men. I will pass on the double or nothing but note that by betting in loonies I have already given you an extra 2%. Generous to a fault, I am, in despair, almost.
I watched much of the game in a barroom where everyone was asking the same question you ask RE: what is with the power play? Where is it and why is it hiding?
Am i ever glad i cancelled the bet.

#2 That’s not funny.  A guy sticks a finger in your mouth and then they complain when you bite it!  What else can you do with it? My cat does the same thing and doesn’t get a penalty! And these guys and the coaches are all pure laine and it’s an old tradition in maple syrup country to stick your finger in trees and things without being spied upon.
As for off side, that was only off sides if you think that off sides happens when your skate blade doesn’t quite make it back over the blue line, even though you try your very best!  I don’t think so in this day and age. It’s not winning that counts. It’s giving it the old college try!!

#1 can your cat skate? does it know how to stay onside? is it a Canadian cat or an Amurcan cat? These are the relevant questions to ask.

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