In mathematics, an ‘X’ is an unknown quantity. In plumbing, a spurt is a drip under pressure. Combine the two and you have an X-spurt or as it is more commonly known; an expert. Increasingly, we are surrounded by self-professed experts; unknown drips under pressure who have been working overtime to make a mess of the world in which we live.
To be fair, some of them are just cynical greedy buggers who are in the ‘spurt’ business for the cash. It may not make the nonsense they impose on society easier to deal with but at least it’s honest. Under the right circumstances, who knows how many of the rest of us might not become a Spurt if there was enough cash being presented.
The Spurts that really get under my hat, however are those who are true believers in their own expertise. Their faces glow with earnestness as the light of Jesus shines from their eyes and a constant flow of stupidity flows out of the mouths. They are folks that tend to worm their way into positions of influence (often at great public expense) and then proceed to take themselves far more seriously than we take them. Continue reading
War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength
George Orwell, 1984
Lord, what fools these mortals be
I remember when we were kids, we took more than just a little delight in hurling insults at those we didn’t like. Sometimes, it was a precursor to a fight but most of the time it was more an exercise in expressing the superiority of ‘our side’.
Much of the time it was pretty mundane, if hurtful, insults that bordered on bullying. If you were overweight, you could expect to be called fatty, porky or fatso at some point by someone or some group who cared less about your feelings than they did about striving to get others to like them. Sometimes, it could get quite colourful and when it did, we referred to it as ‘Doin’ the dozens’; a more formal, almost ritualized even good-natured at times approach to seeing who could come up with insults that topped the other guys (or at least, we thought they did).
Some of the more imaginative among us came up with such notable phrases as: Continue reading
The people in the game now just think to the first Tuesday in November, and not a day beyond it.
This is a frightening statistic. More people vote in ‘American Idol’ than in any US election.
If you thought the six year plus rant by the right over Barack Obama’s citizenship was wild, hang onto your hats because a whole new round of birther accusations is about to start.
Yesterday, Senator Ted Cruz called Jesus and his supporters together to announce he is running for President of the United States. God love him. It takes more than a little courage to throw your life in front of the runaway train that is an American Presidential race.
The Big Race hasn’t officially started, of course, the primaries haven’t even begun and Republican hopefuls are only just starting to hint more broadly than they’ve been hinting for the past 18 months about their intentions to become candidates for the Republican ticket. If the upcoming primary season is like the last, there will probably be thirty or forty of them by the time the serious mud-wrestling gets started. Continue reading
We journalists make it a point to know very little about an extremely wide variety of topics; this is how we stay objective.
Advertisements contain the only truths to be relied on in a newspaper.
Back in the good old days before revolution became popular, there were traditionally three estates or powers in government: the nobility, the clergy and everybody else – commonly referred to as the common folk or commons. Three guesses as to which two held most of the power and which other estate ultimately was led to discover the joy of revolution. As the story goes, Edmund Burke identified a Fourth Estate in an address to the British Parliament back in the mid 1700s – the news media although back then they thought of them simply as newspapers.
Journalism – a profession whose business it is to explain to others what it personally does not understand. –Lord Northcliffe Continue reading
I’m a very firm believer in karma, and put it this way: I get a lot of good parking spots.
Men are not punished for their sins, but by them.
The bible states that, “As ye sow so shall ye reap.” I’m not a biblical scholar but even I know that phrase isn’t about agriculture. It’s about Karma, a universal understanding that what goes around comes around. Basically, it means that we teach others how to treat us by our words and our actions.
I happen to believe in Karma; I’ve just seen too many examples of it in my own life and the lives of others I’ve known to ignore it and based on that experience, I believe some heavy Karma is on its way.
It may not be, as John Lennon wrote, Instant Karma because karma sometimes takes its own sweet time. It can even be quite capricious at times but inevitably, Karma happens and when it does, ‘shit goes down’ to use the vernacular.
Instant Karma’s gonna get you. Gonna knock you right on the head
You better get yourself together. Pretty soon you’re gonna be dead
– John Lennon, Instant Karma Continue reading
“War on terror’ is a misnomer. It would be like calling America’s involvement in World War II a ‘war on kamikazism.’ Terrorism, like kamikazism, is a tactic.”
I don’t like war. It is an ugly, brutal business in which too many innocent people are slaughtered and that has unpredictable and uncertain outcomes. I consider war to be the ultimate failure of civilized people to resolve their differences. Nevertheless, I understand and accept that sometimes there is no other option but to go to war to defend against tyranny and those who are threat to the lives of others and the security of peaceful nations.
I also believe that there is no reason to fight war other than to win it. I believe that if if you are forced to war, then you need to commit whatever resources are available to you in order to achieve victory – not for glory but for self-preservation and the preservation of others.
Canada has gone to war for the third time in a decade and in the same region of the world. Now we have joined a coalition of reportedly 59 other nations to combat ISIL; an armed force of fewer than 40,000 fighters that are storming their way across Syria and Iraq with sociopathic efficiency.
Decades of conflict in the Middle East – thousands upon thousands dead and the world’s leaders seemed to have learned little to nothing from that waste of human life. Continue reading