Archive for the ‘Paranoia’ Category
Thanks to Warren Kinsella for posting this on his site.
As a father, he, um, takes a bit of issue with complete strangers touching his kids in what would ordinarily be a very inappropriate manner. He says:
I am a big, big Obama fan, as regular lurkers will know. But I think these new Transportation Security Administration rules – wherein they are permitted to paw your privates, in effect – are insane. And Obama is insane for letting them happen.
I don’t give a rat’s ass what the Fourth Amendment says. If some bureaucrat touches my kids, I’m drifting him
So yeah, travellers can go through one of those body scan machines (If they are available in the airport from which they are departing. I have no idea if these things are in each and every American airport.) – which I personally don’t have a big problem with – better than personal contact. But then, I read this:
According to information the T.S.A. has shared or published, the airport pat-downs are supposed to be conducted by officers the same sex as the traveler, and passengers can request a private screening and have a traveling companion present during the search. Agents are not permitted to look inside passengers’ underwear or reach inside a skirt, and children 12 and younger are supposed to receive a modified pat-down.
Even passengers who submit to the new body scanners may be subject to a pat-down if the machine detects an anomaly. In other cases, passengers may be randomly selected for a physical search.
Number one, more of a reason than ever to delay visits to the US of A until some measure of sanity has returned to that paranoid nation. Number two, if I do go to the States and if anyone touches my kids, well, I’d pull a “Warren”. And yes, there will be a scene.
Big deal that under-12s get a modified pat-down. Yeah, right. Just try.
Hmmm… just realising that even writing this will put me on some sort of “watch” list.
Too bad. (483)
OTTAWA (NEWS1130) – The Harper government has been monitoring political messages online, and even correcting what it considers misinformation.
They spent 75K to track discussions about the seal hunt… one can only guess what they have spent monitoring the discussions about their latest shenanigans.
So for those of you who think that certain things a certain government department may choose to do are “intrusive”, please re-read this story, k? (1903)
When I make the 5 1/2 westward trek to my hometown outside of Parry Sound, Ontario, I take Highway 60 through Algonquin Park – or just “The Park” as we call it.
It’s a beautiful drive. Rolling hills, lakes and rivers… and lots of fauna. Why, just last month when I did the trip with two of my kids, we saw 4 moose right on the side of the road! The kids loved it!
But we didn’t see anything like this:
This Light Armoured Vehicle (LAV) is parked right on the side of the highway near Hidden Valley Road. Hey, they’re using these against the freakin’ Taliban! Protesters and stray moose wouldn’t stand a chance!
There are gates across the highway now, with police and soldiers monitoring check points and checking the ID of anyone who approaches.
Some of the locals are taking it in stride, I hear. But some are not so happy about the whole Gee-Ate thingy. Folks in this part of the world are pretty practical and straight forward. They are not afraid to call a spade a spade… like this guy:
“They told me to take down my ‘Obama for Prime Minister’ sign (on top of his chip truck). They told me it was disrespectful to the (federal) government given all it has done for Huntsville,” said the Muskoka native.
I too would like to think that they’re not stupid.
And I hope those moose that we saw are not stupid enough to get close to one of those check points. I’m pretty sure they haven’t been cleared by the Integrated Security Unit. (545)
There is a lot of hubbub about the new security measures that have been put into place in the wake of the attempted bombing of the Detroit-bound flight on Christmas day. Passengers bound for American destinations are being subjected to a lot more scrutiny at the point of departure – especially if you are unlucky to be travelling on a passport from one of 14 countries that the U.S. deems to be a threat.
Though I don’t really understand why poor old Cuba is on the list – and I thought Obama would have a different approach to Canada’s fave sun-spot!
But I digress.
Here’s the thing – the Americans have every right to set the rules with regard to flights that are over their airspace or that land in one of their ports of entry. It’s called “sov-er-eign-ty”. Yes, the full body searches are invasive and in 99.999999% of cases, completely unfounded and unnecessary. Yes, they are engaging in racial profiling, which most Canadians find objectionable. Yes, they are delaying the travel plans of millions – some with kids, with mobility problems, etc. And yes, I do think they are being overly paranoid.
So, here’s a thought for those who are offended by the American actions.
DON’T TRAVEL TO THE U.S.!
It’s a crazy notion but it just might work!
I mean, I know that some Canadians need to travel there for work purposes. I know that there are hundreds of thousands of folks on this side of the border who have family in the States who they would like to see now and then. Yeah, yeah – I get all that and you know what? You’ll have to put up with the new measures no matter how much you bitch, holler and scream.
But most Canucks CHOOSE to go to the U.S. for purely recreational purposes. They want the sun of Florida, the craziness of NYC or the natural beauty of the Grand Canyon. So you either choose to forgo all of this OR you resign to being subjected to the new security crap. Very simple.
I rarely go to the States. The last time I was over the border was about 7 years ago when my wife and I went camping in upstate NY. And I don’t have a driving need to go there anytime soon. On one hand, I can count the number of places in America that I would like to visit (Grand Canyon, New Orleans, San Francisco, NYC and Boston) but I wouldn’t feel deprived if on my death bed, I hadn’t gotten around to any of those places. I would much rather see the Pyramids, cruise the Greek islands, go to the Arctic, visit Peru… and the list goes on.
So, the bottom line, kids – you don’t have to like what they are doing down in da South der. But they have every right to do as they wish. And if you can’t accept that, then stay in Canada or travel to somewhere else.
I saw an article about this in the Globe the other day and the first thought to cross my mind was “why”?
Why is this technology needed?
I can see the YouTube vids now! EVERYTHING eventually ends up on YouTube! These pics, at the very least, will provide some jollies to more than a few security agents!
“Hey, Ralph, check out the kaboo-boos on this one, ain’t she a treat to the eyes?”
“Sure thing Herman, but ya should seen the bod on this chick that flew to Paris last week!”
Seriously, we have to question this hare-brained idea, and now. What is the impetus for this? Has there been a recent incident where a would-be terrorist has tried to sneak verboten items in his or her body cavities? Where is the “thing” that the CBSA (Can. Border Services Agency) can point to and say: “see – THIS is why we have to do this!”
I’d start a fb group decrying this but as I am a frequent flier, I fear I would be put on someone’s “list”.
Can you tell that I’m really pissed off about this?
Write your MP. Your MPP. Your Mom. Your psychic healer.
Hey? How’s THAT for an aggressive title?
In case you haven’t been following this, Pope Benedict XVI is doing a tour of Africa and is sticking to his guns about the whole condom thing… ie., use one during a horizontal bop session you’ll be slingin’ coal into the abyss once you rid yourself of your mortal coil.
In the name of all things that are human, when will the RC’s get their collective heads out of the sand? Condoms are the most practical way to stem the tide of AIDS that is devastating many families and communities in Africa. Instead of realising the inevitable slap-your-hand-on-the forehead-Mr.-Obvious-thing and begin to move into this millennium, the Catholic Church is actually becoming more forceful in its opposition to the use of condoms or other forms of birth control.
He (the Pope) had never directly addressed condom use, but has said the Roman Catholic Church is in the forefront of the battle against AIDS. The Vatican encourages sexual abstinence to fight the spread of the disease.
“You can’t resolve it with the distribution of condoms,” the pope told reporters aboard the Alitalia plane on its way to Yaounde, Cameroon, where he has arrived to start his first visit to Africa as pontiff. “On the contrary, it increases the problem.”
Abstinence? “Increasing the problem”? What are they smoking?
At least the last guy who wore the long robes and major bling bling seemed to be at least approaching the last century in terms of his thinking. This dude is having 12th c. flashbacks!
Abstinence has ever been and will never be the answer to the AIDS problem, or teen pregnancies, or STDs. Hormones will always out-trump reason – always has and always will. Condoms are a cheap and effective way to prevent pregnancies and scales back the rate of population growth in the developing world. Even Sarah Palin’s daughter is saying that abstinence is not a practical option. In an interview with Christian Today, Bristol declares the following: “Everyone should be abstinent…but it is not realistic at all.”
PLUS they are an effective barrier against HIV.
PLUS they are relatively inexpensive – especially when compared to the social cost of carrying for AIDS victims.
PLUS what is wrong with sex anyways? Over at the Perpetual Post (a blog I just discovered), they said it best:
People, there is nothing wrong with having sex, provided you’re smart about it. But the thing is, the average person isn’t actually all that smart. And these are the folks who are breeding like crazy, further dumbing down the gene pool with many, many equally dumb babies. So, the very least we, the intelligent portion of the population, can do is to make knowledge available – namely, knowledge about how to have sex without disastrous repercussions.
Why oh why is this archaic institution still around? There are millions upon millions of Catholics who go along with these medieval edicts and carry them close to their heart. I will never in my life understand why.
Bill Maher – while I may not always agree with his political views – he does hit it on the head with this clip.
Thanks to The Squiddude for posting it!
Mr. Blair Wilson is an ex-Grit Independent MP for the West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country riding. He was kicked out of Liberal caucus last year after allegations surfaced about spending irregularities in his 2006 campaign. Allegations that were unfounded according to Elections Canada.
The Green leader, Elizabeth May, has seized upon this development to claim her spot in the televised leadership debates that will take place during the next campaign; likely to take place this Fall since Stevie is just itchin’ to go to the polls.
I think May has a point. Her party is hovering around 10% in the polls with higher ratings in traditionally leftward leaning ridings. Of course, the ReformCons say “nope, sorry Liz… but ya can’t come and play in our sandbox.” And frankly, I don’t expect the Grits to say anything much different from the Reformer tone. The Greens would in all likelihood not drain any votes from the Neocons, but they would indeed do so from the Grits.. and the Dippers too.
In any case, this development further stresses my own decision-making matrix as I am forced once again to choose between who I truly support (The Greens) and who I feel I NEED to support in order to fend off a full-frontal attack by the NeoCons (i.e., vote for the Grits… which in my riding actually ain’t so bad since our MP is strong and his views on important issues fit in quite nicely with mine).
Well, it looks like the writ will be dropped next week, so I had better get my mind into election mode real quickly!
Of course, all of this will be taking place while another election takes place in the country to the south of us. Lawrence Martin of the G&M has a great piece in Saturday’s edition about how the continental political landscape may look later this fall.
For political junkies like me, these are good times… (571)