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February 2013 Archives

February 3, 2013

Mind You, The Real Ones Seem Kind Of Shaky On The Concept, Too


OTTAWA — Inmates failed in their first bid to organize a national union for prisoners who are working while incarcerated in federal penitentiaries because that employment does not make them public servants.

The organizing drive was stymied by a Public Service Labour Relations Board ruling that it doesn’t have jurisdiction to hear inmates’ complaint because the work they do for rehabilitation programs does not make them employees of Correctional Services of Canada. The decision, based on written submissions, was released this week.

Inmates began a campaign to create a union, Canadian Prisoners Labour Confederation, at the Mountain Institution in Agassiz, B.C. more than a year ago to address pay, working conditions and other issues while working in rehabilitation programs. It was hailed as the first attempt to unionize inmates in Canada.

Um, sorry, I fail to see how murderers and rapists somehow qualify as "public servants." I would recommend a severe fish-broth "hunger strike" to get me to see the error of my ways. Chief Theresa Spence could give you tips on organizing one, and might even join you in solidarity. Just don't touch her stash of Doritos -- you don't mess with Mother Theresa's emergency snacks and live to tell the tale.

February 4, 2013

You Stay Classy, Ron



February 5, 2013

Will The First One Into The Stone Age Please Turn Out The Lights?


Most alarmingly, the industry has highlighted news reports linking reusable shopping bags to the spread of disease. Like this one, from the Los Angeles Times last May: “A reusable grocery bag left in a hotel bathroom caused an outbreak of norovirus-induced diarrhea and nausea that struck nine of 13 members of a girls’ soccer team in October, Oregon researchers reported Wednesday.” The norovirus may not have political clout, but evidently it, too, is rooting against plastic bags.

Warning of disease may seem like an over-the-top scare tactic, but research suggests there’s more than anecdote behind this industry talking point. In a 2011 study, four researchers examined reusable bags in California and Arizona and found that 51 percent of them contained coliform bacteria. The problem appears to be the habits of the reusers. Seventy-five percent said they keep meat and vegetables in the same bag. When bags were stored in hot car trunks for two hours, the bacteria grew tenfold.

February 6, 2013

Study: Red Meat Takes Years Off Of Cow's Life

WASHINGTON—Confirming years of speculation, a new study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Animal Health Monitoring System has found that red meat significantly increases the risk of premature death in cows. "Our research suggests that by having red meat, a cow's life can be shortened by as many as 10 years, sometimes more," Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in an interview with CNN Tuesday. "Unfortunately, in some cases, even just a single daily serving of red meat can hurt a cow's chances of surviving past the earliest stage of life." On a more positive note, researchers found that other high-protein foods like milk, cheese, and butter only decrease a cow's life by 7 to 9 years.

February 7, 2013

Laws Concerning Food and Drink; Household Principles; Lamentations of the Father

The Atlantic:

Laws Pertaining to Dessert

For we judge between the plate that is unclean and the plate that is clean, saying first, if the plate is clean, then you shall have dessert. But of the unclean plate, the laws are these: If you have eaten most of your meat, and two bites of your peas with each bite consisting of not less than three peas each, or in total six peas, eaten where I can see, and you have also eaten enough of your potatoes to fill two forks, both forkfuls eaten where I can see, then you shall have dessert. But if you eat a lesser number of peas, and yet you eat the potatoes, still you shall not have dessert; and if you eat the peas, yet leave the potatoes uneaten, you shall not have dessert, no, not even a small portion thereof. And if you try to deceive by moving the potatoes or peas around with a fork, that it may appear you have eaten what you have not, you will fall into iniquity. And I will know, and you shall have no dessert.

On Screaming

Do not scream; for it is as if you scream all the time. If you are given a plate on which two foods you do not wish to touch each other are touching each other, your voice rises up even to the ceiling, while you point to the offense with the finger of your right hand; but I say to you, scream not, only remonstrate gently with the server, that the server may correct the fault. Likewise if you receive a portion of fish from which every piece of herbal seasoning has not been scraped off, and the herbal seasoning is loathsome to you, and steeped in vileness, again I say, refrain from screaming. Though the vileness overwhelm you, and cause you a faint unto death, make not that sound from within your throat, neither cover your face, nor press your fingers to your nose. For even now I have made the fish as it should be; behold, I eat of it myself, yet do not die.

February 10, 2013

In The Country Of The Blind, The One-Eyed Man Is King *

Washington Times:

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Former Vice President Dick Cheney said Saturday night that President Obama has jeopardized U.S. national security by nominating substandard candidates for key Cabinet posts and by degrading the U.S. military.

“The performance now of Barack Obama as he staffs up the national security team for the second term is dismal,” Mr. Cheney said in comments to about 300 members of the Wyoming Republican Party.

Mr. Cheney, a Wyoming native, said it was vital to the nation’s national security that “good folks” hold the positions of secretary of state, CIA director and secretary of defense.

“Frankly, what he has appointed are second-rate people,” he said.

Cheney is being generous. Obama is himself a thoroughgoing second-rater; he only shines in comparison to true third-raters like Joe Biden, Chuck Hagel, etc., etc., etc. . . .

February 11, 2013

Papal Bull

Eight years ago, prior to the election of Pope Benedict, I wrote this. I thought it worthy to print again (though all the links are by now broken). Because, after all, the MSM never tires of recycling their stale arguments.


In the post below I mentioned that I prefer to delay commenting on matters profound until someone smarter comes along and does it for me. Mark Steyn to the rescue:

The root of the Pope's thinking - that there are eternal truths no one can change even if one wanted to - is completely incomprehensible to the progressivist mindset. There are no absolute truths, everything's in play, and by "consensus" all we're really arguing is the rate of concession to the inevitable: abortion's here to stay, gay marriage will be here any day now, in a year or two it'll be something else - it's all gonna happen anyway, man, so why be the last squaresville daddy-o on the block?

See how much work this saves me? (I heartily -- do I even have to say this? -- recommend the full article at the Telegraph. Registration required, but it's just an email address, if I remember right.)

I don't know what religion Steyn professes; or if he believes in any at all -- but he surely has a better understanding of Catholicism than, say, the CBC, which has spent the last week rounding up every feminist virago and homosexual malcontent it could find to explain how the next Pope must "fix" the church.

North American Catholics might be ambivalent about some of these issues, but to portray Frances Kissling -- a woman who heads the (memberless, but well funded) Catholics for a Free Choice, as representative of any kind of groundswell opinion is ludicrous. She ran three abortion clinics, for pity's sake.

February 12, 2013

The Bitch Is Back


Vancouver Sun:

Justin Bieber just can't get any respect - particularly at the Grammys.

The young pop star was more than a bit petulant he wasn't nominated in any category for music's highest honour.

Well, someone who was - and snagged several top awards - has an explanation. Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney said the Canadian heartthrob shouldn't feel snubbed.

"He's rich, right?" Carney told TMZ outside the Château Marmont. "Grammys are for like music, not for money ... and he's making a lot of money. He should be happy."

"Grammys are for like music"? Phht. This is the outfit that awarded the "Hard Rock" category one infamous year to . . . Jethro Tull. Some others who've never won a regular (most went on to garner a "Lifetime Achievement" trophy) Grammy: The Who; Led Zepplin; Chuck Berry; Janis Joplin; The Beach Boys; Bob Marley; The Doors.

Of course, The Baha Men won in 2000 for "Who Let The Dogs Out." So there's that.

Carney was in the news about a year ago, slagging Nickelback. I don't remember exactly what he said, but it was something snarky. Now, I hold no brief for Nickelback or Bieber; but they're my countrymen, dammit -- attack one (or two), you attack us all. And I've always subscribed to a modified version of Ronald Reagan's credo, "Republicans shouldn't speak evil of other Republicans."

Being a musician is a precarious enough business without having to put up with snide attacks from other musicians, particularly of the pretentious hipster variety. Leave that stuff to the critics.

As I said above, I don't listen to Nickelback much, or Bieber ever. So what? I don't have a lot of time for Dixieland jazz or Peruvian nose-flautists either. It's a big wild wonderful world out there, and there's plenty of music in it that will fit your requirements exactly, if you'll take some time to look for it.

I've never really gotten The Black Keys' music anyway. It's competently enough done, I suppose, and some of it is quite tuneful, but a lot of it just comes across as guitar-heavy arena bombast (sort of like Nickelback, now that I think of it).

But that's all changed, now that I've seen this groovy picture of the groovetacular Black Keys boys. Let me tell you, they are flat out rockin' the joint with those "His-N-Her" car coats. Used to be you could only get those by mail order, but maybe there's a secret Rock Star store that they shop at.

And I'm guessing that Carney must be on the Theresa Spence Miracle Fish Broth Diet and Beauty Regime. I haven't seen that many Chins since I last looked at the Shanghai phone book.

Ya owe me one, Chad Kroeger.

February 13, 2013

Worm In The Apple


"We look to the police for protection, and our girls and women have not been able to trust them to protect them," said Sharon McIvor, who is with the Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action and is a longtime advocate for aboriginal women.

"Not only are they not protecting them adequately, but they are perpetrating offences against them — criminal offences," she said.

"[The report] is not about painting all members of the RCMP as abusers," Rhoad said. "We know that the great majority of members serve honourably, devoting their lives to the protection of their communities.

"It is about the fact that those good officers deserve better than to see those tarnishing their reputation not be held accountable."

Uh, it sounds like you're the ones trying to tarnish the RCMP's reputation with wild, anonymous and improbable accusations.

This is the latest project of Human Rights Watch, a NGO with one of those impressive-sounding names that is pretty much the opposite of what they are beavering away at. The website NGO Monitor has been tracking it:

Founded as Helsinki Watch in 1978; based in New York, headed by Kenneth Roth (Executive Director since 1993)

Annual budget of $48 million in 2010*; in September 2010, HRW announced a 10-year, $100 million donation from billionaire George Soros. With the grant, HRW plans to increase its staff by one-third and “to shape the foreign policies of these emerging powers, much as we have traditionally done with Western powers.”

Systematic NGO Monitor analyses demonstrate that HRW disproportionately focuses on condemnations of Israel and that publications related to Israel often lack credibility.

Many HRW officials, including the heads of the Middle East and North Africa Division, have a history of ideological bias.

In October 2009, HRW founder Robert Bernstein published an article in the New York Times (“Rights Watchdog, Lost in the Mideast”), strongly criticizing the organization for ignoring severe human rights violations in closed societies, for its anti-Israel bias, and for “issuing reports...that are helping those who wish to turn Israel into a pariah state.” Bernstein expanded on these ideas in a lecture at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (November 2010), and noted that “Human Rights Watch’s attacks on almost every issue [have] become more and more hostile [toward Israel].”

In 2009, HRW held a fundraising dinner in Saudi Arabia, using HRW’s anti-Israel bias and the specter of “pro-Israel pressure groups” to solicit funds from “prominent members of Saudi society.” At the event, Whitson boasted that HRW allegations of human rights violations were instrumental in the Goldstone mission.

In 2009, Sarah Leah Whitson, Director of the Middle East and North Africa Division, visited Libya, claiming to have discovered a “Tripoli spring.” She praised Muammar Qaddafi’s son Seif Islam as a leading reformer and for creating an “expanded space for discussion and debate.”

HRW was an active participant in the 2001 Durban conference, and continues to campaign in favor of boycotts and sanctions against Israel.

In September 2009 “senior military analyst” Marc Garlasco was revealed to be an obsessive collector of Nazi memorabilia. He was suspended and then dismissed, but his reports were not withdrawn. As shown in a Sunday Times (UK) article, “Nazi scandal engulfs Human Rights Watch” (March 28, 2010), the Garlasco issue was indicative of far deeper problems at the NGO.

Hey, there's our creepy friend George Soros! Looks like Garlasco isn't the only Nazi onboard. Something is going on here, and it ain't pretty.

February 14, 2013

Reworked Internet Bill Gets It Right


The bad parts of the bill may be dead, but Canada is preserving one part of it for law enforcement. The police will be allowed to make use of warrantless wiretaps in the case of an emergency, but there are a few important caveats included in the legislation.

For one, police must alert citizens they were subject to a wiretap after an investigation has been closed. The government is also required to issue annual reports on how wiretaps are used. Finally, warrantless wiretaps are restricted to only certain officials for certain crimes.

It’s certainly different from how wiretapping works in the U.S. FISA allows the government to wiretap anyone without a warrant, and without ever notifying them. Some members of Congress have worked towards making it more transparent, but proponents argue that it must be kept secret.

Canada’s killing of C-30 comes on the heels of an expected cybersecurity executive order that may very well curtail more privacy on the Internet for Americans. Maybe it’s time American lawmakers looked north for a little inspiration for how Internet surveillance should really work – limited and transparent


February 17, 2013

Operation Hubris

Jonah Goldberg:

Look closely at Obama’s State of the Union address, and you see not a progressive colossus poised to conquer all in his path, but a mostly spent force, desperately trying to figure out how to get anything done at all. His main policy ambition was to keep from getting the blame for his own idea: the sequester.

[. . .]

This is supposed to be liberalism reborn? Lame ideas cribbed from a playbook with 60 years of dust on it? Slogans hatched by pols who needed a few more nouns to round out Obama’s sentences? Legislative initiatives that will cost Democrats seats in 2014 and beyond?

Obama’s State of the Union had the lowest ratings in 13 years for a reason — and it’s not that America is excited for a new golden age of liberalism. The momentum Obama feels is the pull of gravity, as he starts his fall.

February 18, 2013

Waxing Our Way to the Emergency Room


What was just a few years ago a somewhat novel ritual is now considered an all but de rigueur part of aesthetic maintenance, for both sexes. Kids, as recently as the 1990s, everybody had piercings down there, but pretty much everybody still had pubes, too. Now, between 70 and nearly 90 percent of females remove part or all of their genital hair, and roughly 60 to 80 percent of men. And while it may be leading to more E.R. visits, on the upside, it’s made pubic lice all but extinct in our time. Someday, people won’t even know that crabs were once something you could get someplace other than Red Lobster.
This probably qualifies as Too Much Information, but I must confess that when I was young and stupid (thankfully I've solved at least half of that condition), I once trimmed the foilage Down There. I don't know if it made me feel sexier than usual -- I rather doubt it, though, considering I spent the next two or three days rolling around on the floor, desperately trying to not provoke the itching, which can only be described as ferocious.

February 19, 2013

Cat Fight In The Court Of The Sun King

Thomas Lifson:

The coming weekend will be a painful one for Desiree Rogers, the beautiful former White House Social Secretary who discovered that outshining Michelle Obama is a very, very bad idea. After following the Obamas from Chicago to DC and entering the history books as the first African-American White House Social Secretary, Ms. Rogers appeared to revel in her status as Michelle's Chicago buddy, and demonstrated a fashion sense that took advantage of her naturally slender frame and role as social gatekeeper to become (however briefly) possibly the most glamorous African American woman in the country.

February 20, 2013

The 5 Most Secretly Badass Countries

We're Number 4! We're Number 4!


Joint Task Force 2 started out in the 1990s as sort of bodyguards for Canadian politicians and diplomats. By 2001, they had the chops to participate in the war in Afghanistan -- secretly. Forty elite JTF2 soldiers worked alongside U.S. forces and took out about 100 high-ranking Taliban and al-Qaida leaders. The Canadian public didn't even know they were there until someone accidentally published their Joint Task Force pictures, but credited them as Americans.

At last, a government program that works.

Let's hope that they're bilingual, too. It'd be doubly chilling to hear "You're dead!" yelled in both official languages.

February 23, 2013

Hey, Pretty Young Women Are People, Too!


DAYTONA BEACH, FL—Having secured pole position at the 55th Annual Daytona 500 this Sunday, stock car racer Danica Patrick reportedly has drawn universal praise for smashing social barriers on behalf of stunningly beautiful women everywhere. “In reaching this latest milestone, Danica has once more shown that no challenge is too great for a young, gorgeous female,” said ESPN racing columnist David Newton of the winsome, well-proportioned NASCAR driver, who in addition to her feats on the racetrack is widely regarded as one of the most alluring women in professional sports. “Demonstrating that she can both compete with and even surpass her male peers, Danica is living proof that there is no obstacle a good-looking woman cannot overcome. Her continued success sends an important message to little girls around the world that, provided they believe in themselves and are gorgeous, they can achieve their dreams.” Newton confirmed that if Patrick takes the checkered flag at Daytona, it would be the most significant symbolic victory since 2004, when Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s win at the race proved once and for all that privileged white men who come from NASCAR families can do anything.

February 25, 2013

The Eyes Have It

Daniel Pipes:

Philadelphia, the city where I live, has quietly and unassumingly become the capital of the Western world as regards female Islamic garb as an accessory to crime.

[ . . . ]

By my count, the Philadelphia region has witnessed 14 robberies (or attempted robberies) of financial institutions in the past six years in which the thieves relied on an Islamic full-body cover. They took place in January 2007, June 2007, May 2008, November 2009, October 2010 (two), February 2011, June 2011, December 2011, January 2012, March 2012 (two), and April 2012 (two). The most violent attack took place on May 3, 2008, when Police Sergeant Stephen Liczbinski was killed with an AK-47 in a shoot-out following a successful robbery in which the thieves wore burqas; the police then killed one of the criminals.

February 26, 2013

The Jokes, They Write Themselves

Washington Times:

Secretary of State John Kerry — who recently made international headlines for inventing a country — has again drawn attention for questionable remarks, this time to a group of German students.

Mr. Kerry, while speaking in Berlin on Tuesday, asserted that in the United States “you have a right to be stupid if you want to be.”

About February 2013

This page contains all entries posted to the blog quebecois in February 2013. They are listed from oldest to newest.

January 2013 is the previous archive.

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