The Death of Truth in the Trump Era

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The ongoing criminal trial of Donald Trump (the first one; others are to follow) continues to expose the difference between what he and his followers believe and anything related to evidence, truth, or facts. Trump lies. Blatantly, shamelessly, openly, and frequently. He lies so often that quite literally nothing he says can be trusted as truthful or factual. It’s not simply opponents who are aware of his lies. His followers must know too, because his lies are so glaringly obvious and are debunked in all … click below for more ↓

CBC Strives for Supermarket Tabloid Status

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As a source of credible journalism, CBC used to be one of the standards by which other media measured themselves. It was reliable, honest, and responsible. Oh, how far CBC has fallen from that perch. Decades of (mostly CONservative-implemented) cuts to reporting and editing staff, egregious layoffs too often in parallel with high executive bonuses ($14.9 million paid to roughly 1,100 people in 2023), coupled with an executive management which has clearly lost focus and has been flailing about aimlessly have taken their inevitable toll … 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, angels, an afterlife, souls, saints, … click below for more ↓

Those Wacky 5G Conspiracy Believers

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Although it surfs the tidal wave of anti-intellectualism and anti-science in our society, the whole “5G-is-evil” conspiracy has been amusing, I must admit. From burning down cell towers, to accusing Bill Gates of spreading COVID through 5G waves, it’s been a delightful cavalcade of the funniest, stupidest notions to flitter through the internet. They have a Marjorie-Taylor-Greene wackiness about them (albeit without her nastiness); the sort of conspiracy nuttiness not quite attached to gravity or reality, like the flat earth, creationism or Trump won in … click below for more ↓

Debunking Poilievre’s Freedom Myth

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If you listen to Pierre Poilievre, the leading — and rightmost — candidate for the Conservative Party’s leadership, Canada is a dictatorship suffering under the thumb of the tyrant, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. To escape from the authoritarian rule of the Liberals, Poilievre (aka Skippy) promises to make us “the freest place in the world.” In a recent interview published in Macleans, Poilievre used the words freedom or freedoms 24 times. In one answer to the interviewer, Skippy said, I believe in freedom of speech on … click below for more ↓

Milton Was Wrong

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In 1644, the English poet and pamphleteer John Milton wrote an impassioned defence of free speech (or, more factually, against censorship of print and in favour of restriction-free publication) called the Areopagitica. It was subtitled A speech of Mr. John Milton for the Liberty of Unlicenc’d Printing, to the Parlament of England. In it, Milton argued that, given the choice between truth and lies, people were wise enough to see what was true. And that people’s character grew stronger when presented with a wide variety … click below for more ↓

Flat Earth Beliefs on the Downslope?

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It’s been a while since I wrote about Flat Earthers and their inane —but laugh-aloud funny — ideas about science, religion, and politics. Their worldview is wrapped up in wacky conspiracies, then layered with a topping of pseudo-biblical claptrap, crypto-mythology, scary demons, and your basic rightwing paranoia about the “deep state.” I wrote two pieces about flat-earth nonsense in 2016 (read them here and here), but have not really looked at their loony anti-science movement in any depth since then. After all, there’s only so … click below for more ↓

This Says It All

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The clearest, most concise statement about the alt-right protests and demonstrations comes from Mark Carney, former governor of both the Bank of England and the Bank of Canada. This protest was never about freedom: it was always about pushing a virulently rightwing agenda, endorsed by the treasonous Donald Trump, to hold the lawful government hostage. Source: Globe & Mail post on Facebook. Click the image to see the full column by Carney in today’s G&M (subscription required). See the comments below my previous post for … click below for more ↓

Freedom or Just Free-Dumb?

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It’s a sad statement on modern affairs that the word “freedom” has been reduced to a generally meaningless term, thanks to the constant gaslighting by the right.  Every rule, regulation, protocol that the right doesn’t like, doesn’t agree with their ideology or that hurts their feelings is trumped up as an attack on freedom. The right thrive on such conspiracies. But while they press all the hot buttons to get their followers riled into a frenzy over perceived slights against alleged freedoms, you seldom hear … click below for more ↓

Uppercase Imperialism?

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Dr. Linda Manyguns has stylized herself as Dr. linda manyguns because she stopped using uppercase (capital) letters to protest the “symbols of hierarchy.” Manyguns is the associate vice-president of indigenization and decolonization at Mt. Royal University in Alberta. On her own office’s website, she wrote: we resist acknowledging the power structures that oppress and join the movement that does not capitalize. the office of indigenization and decolonization supports acts that focus on inclusion and support the right of all people to positive inclusion and change. … click below for more ↓

Jail the Unvaccinated

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In a recent opinion piece in Macleans Magazine, Scott Gilmore wrote what I expect many vaccinated Canadians felt about those who still refuse to get vaccinated and help end this pandemic: We need to begin treating the vaccine holdouts as the fools they are. It is not fair that reasonable and responsible Canadians should pay the price for their deadly selfishness. No more soothing tones and patience. Time for the stick. The stick in question that Gilmore suggests is withholding services and access to the … click below for more ↓

We’re Doomed. Doomed, I tell you.

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While walking our dog recently, we encountered another couple “our age” (somewhere between 65 and 90) also walking their dog. While the two pets sniffed and frolicked, we chatted with them (at a safe distance, of course). And, as might be expected during a lengthy pandemic, one of the first questions we asked them was, “Have you had your shot yet?” Shockingly, they both answered, “No! And we’re not going to get one.” My first thought when I heard this, “We’re doomed.” These are people … click below for more ↓

We Need New Names for Stupid

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I was reading a story in CollingwoodToday about another anti-mask/anti-lockdown protest recently — this one in Barrie, Sat. April 24 — and thought to myself that our language does not have the appropriate words to describe the combination of selfishness, stupidity, and ignorance that fuels this sort of event. Sure, we have lots of individual words to describe these people, but it seems the pandemic has brought out a unique combination of attributes that deserve their own vocabulary.  This was the seventh such rally in … click below for more ↓

Musings on Viruses and Evolution

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One has to wonder how creationists can maintain their beliefs during a pandemic where the virus is clearly evolving to improve its ability to infect people and avoid immune system responses. It’s like watching Darwin in action every day. What sort of cognitive dissonance is necessary to believe in creationism while reading the headlines about COVID variants emerging all over the world? Or maybe they don’t read the news to avoid being confronted by such inconvenient truths. Although viruses evolve mostly through mutations of their … click below for more ↓

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