Our Arrogant Mayor is At It Again

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For me, I didn’t see the need for another letter at this time. Things could change,” Mayor Yvonne Hamlin sniffily replied to CollingwoodToday in her best “Let them eat cake” manner. “For me.” It’s always about me, me, me. It’s almost like she took selfishness lessons from Councillor Jeffrey. Hamlin was responding to a question about why she, representing Collingwood, refused to sign a letter about our hospital being sent to “provincial health minister and deputy premier Sylvia Jones indicating … click below for more!

Have Conservatives Finally Become Irredeemable?

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In the past, whenever I read news about any conservative leader, party or government — small-c conservative, including the Canadian federal and provincial Conservative parties, the American Repugnicans, and the British Tories — I always have to ask myself, “Can they get any more corrupt than this?” Then I ask, “Can they be any more dishonest?” And then “Can they be any more batshit crazy?” And every time I look further, they surprise me by scraping the metaphorical barrel deeper, … click below for more!

Making Gilead a Reality

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American Talibangelists recently took a giant step towards creating Gilead in the USA when the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos were due the same legal protection as real children (although children there have less protection because Repugnicans care little about actual children than embryos). It extended the the legal definition of a human life to start at conception.* This 131-page ruling includes 41 references to god, flipping the bird to even lip service to the separation of state … click below for more!

The Death of Reading?

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There are days when I despair for humanity’s future. Many days, of late, it seems, and they seem to get more frequent as I read the news. I recently read an article online that confirms my belief we’re all doomed by the accelerating stupidity that seems to be consuming the planet.* It makes me want to go back to bed, pull the covers over my head, and hibernate from the rest of the world while it destroys itself with self-propelled … click below for more!

How Low Can You Go?

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A Gallup poll released last summer suggested Americans are finally waking up to reality, although clearly they still have a long way to go. An article about this hopeful change in American thinking on Gallup’s website was titled, Belief in Five Spiritual Entities Edges Down to New Lows. Exciting as that headline seems, the figures showing belief in the supernatural are still way too high for a supposedly modern, advanced nation. And never forget that the Talibangelists still have a … click below for more!

Musings on The Lone Ranger, Tonto, and Cultural Appropriation

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Yes, I get the reason some people might have been outraged that a white guy (Johnny Depp) played an indigenous person in the 2013 movie version of The Lone Ranger. It seemed, at least from the outside at the time — before watching it — to reinforce stereotypes and denigrate native Indians. Cultural appropriation and all that. What was Disney thinking? Facepalm! Whitewashing! But wait… Time magazine had a review with the title, Johnny Depp as Tonto: Is The Lone … click below for more!

WWCD: What Would Cicero Do?

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Throughout his career, Marcus Tullius Cicero fought tyranny, stood up to dictators and bullies, defended the Republic, and paid for his principled stand with his life. He put himself in harm’s way frequently by openly challenging and even suing the elites, the rich, and the powerful who were controlling — or trying to control — Rome and its empire for their own personal benefit and enrichment. I wonder what he would do if he were alive today, facing the same … click below for more!

Musings on Grammar, Usage, and Garner’s

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Be honest with me: how serious are you about the serial comma? Do you wade into discussions on language forums and social media brandishing citations from your favourite authorities? Do you dismiss dissenting authorities as heretics? Are there style and usage guides on your bookshelf with sticky notes and bookmarks in them so you can immediately find your references should anyone post a contrary opinion? Do you haughtily refer to it as the Oxford comma instead of the serial — … click below for more!

Another Housing Debacle in Cwood

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A recent story in CollingwoodToday leads me to believe Council has made yet another misstep in its fumbling and bumbling efforts to deal with affordable housing. As the story notes, Council decided to sell an already affordable property near the downtown where people are currently living in rental units, and to sell another piece of property at the edge of town far from every service and shopping, to create an “affordable ghetto” there. Bad ideas, as I’ll explain, and a … click below for more!

Why Local Media Has Failed Us

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The World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2024, released this week, identifies the biggest short-term risk to the planet is from misinformation and disinformation, even above extreme weather events. The risk is highest during the next two years when “more than 3 billion people due to head to the polls in 2024 and 2025, including in major economies like the United States, India and the United Kingdom” where rightwing dictators and fascists like Trump, Putin, Poilievre, and Modi will be … click below for more!

Musings on Atheism, Belief, and Statues

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The website godchecker.com lists roughly 4,000 “weird and wonderful Gods, Supreme Beings, Demons, Spirits and Fabulous Beasts” which have been worshipped since the beginning of recorded history. Many are still being worshipped.  It’s quite an amusing and exhaustive collection of deities, demons, and demigods like saints. All gods and demons are, at least to me, weird, albeit not wonderful except as expressions of our limitless imaginations. Ditto with the rest of the supernatural baggage that comes with deities: reincarnation, ghosts, … click below for more!

Musings on the Post-Xmas Days

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I am glad to have reached the first week in January of 2024 without telling a lot of people to simply fuck off and leave me alone during the past month. The urge is, I’m afraid, great and growing stronger every year. The Xmas season does that to me, beginning as it does in early September, when Canadian Tire and other box stores start putting Xmas lights and decorations on display for sale. The selling season continues through the late … click below for more!

Review: The Banshees of Inisherin

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I had expected comedy. Maybe not laugh-aloud, rib-splitting stuff. Not slapstick and pratfalls. But humour of the British sort. Oscar-Wilde-ish witty dialogue. Banter like that from Fry and Laurie. Joycean innuendo and joie-de-vivre. And a resolution that brought an appropriate closure to the end. Instead, what I got was a Greek tragedy of unresolved pathos, violence, poverty, and misery that left the story — and audience —hanging. Not what the trailers of The Banshees of Inisherin had led me to … click below for more!

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