schmevil: (Justice rider wondy)
(Canadian shack wankbroglio: whaaaat. I don't even know how to approach that. I... don't know enough about what sparked this? Links, anyone?)

How about something to do with actual Canada?

*The Current was broadcasting from Whitehorse today for a special episode:

Absent Aboriginal Fathers

There are many statistics. The percentage of Aboriginal children being raised by a single parent -- usually the mother -- is double the percentage of other Canadian children. One in 5 First Nations women over the age of 15 is a single mom. And if statistics don't change, a growing number of Aboriginal boys will typically become absent dads themselves. We hear from CBC Reporter, Geoff Leo who has been looking into this story and from a professor at the School of Child and Youth Care at the University of Victoria.

Love The Current, and this was a great townhall. Lots of important points raised. Lots of touching stories.

*True North Aid is raising funds for furnishing the new modular homes on their way to Attawapistkat. I'm not super familiar with the organization, so I can't advise you on it, or the program.

*Did you catch this morning's same sex marriage confusion?

The renewed attention was sparked by the case of an unidentified lesbian couple who married in Canada in 2005 but split up in 2009. The partners are living in Florida and the United Kingdom. Both women want a divorce, but cannot get one where they now live because the state of Florida does not recognize their marriage, and although the U.K. grants civil partnerships to same-sex couples, it does not recognize the Canadian marriage.

The couple went to court last June seeking a Canadian divorce, despite the federal Divorce Act's one-year residency requirement, which they do not meet. Their submission argues the rules are discriminatory, and the couple is seeking $30,000 in damages for negligent misrepresentation by the province of Ontario if their marriage is found to be invalid.

But in addition to the residency requirement, a submission from a federal government lawyer in response to the couple's case cites another reason for refusing to grant the divorce — that they are not legally married.

Documents released Thursday show the government arguing that "in order for a marriage to be legally valid under Canadian law, the parties to the marriage must satisfy both the requirements of the place where the marriage is celebrated... and the requirements of the law of domicile of the couple with regard to their legal capacity to marry one another."

Harper says he has no intention of re-opening the debate on same sex marriage.

I think it's likely that the divorce law will be amended if that's what's necessary to clear this up. The CPC isn't going to win anything from causing ANOTHER international human rights kerfluffle.
schmevil: (union)
In brief:

- There are no quick or easy solutions for the Liberal Party. STFU about Justin Trudeau. We're talking deep structural reform and rebuilding.

- The NDP is not responsible for the Conservative majority. Yes, there was vote splitting, but the appalling performance of the Liberals and their aprox decade long sink into the electoral abyss is on them. The Conservatives deserve credit for the incredible machine they've built. They didn't get a majority by accident.

- Congrats Green Party and Elizabeth May! Historic day for progressives. First elected Green MP, and first NDP opposition.

- It's going to be a rough adjustment for Quebec, but in the long run, a renewed engagement with the rest of the country can only be good. Good news too, for the rest of the country, as we can once again have truly national policy debates. ALL regions are now up for grabs, if parties fight hard enough, and long enough.

- Conservative majority, ok. Time for progressives to fight harder, be it through citizen journalism, informal activism, or NGOs.

- Voter turnout is estimated at 61%. Shameful, particularly in light of how much the political map has been rewritten. We need to spend these next four years dragging our fellow citizens into: learning about our electoral system and political parties, encouraging them to get involved, and fostering a sense of individual and community responsibility.

Possibly a longer, more thoughtful post later. For now I need to sleep it off.
schmevil: (union)
An Eloquent Plea for Democracy.
James Travers for the Toronto Star.
March 4, 2011 (Originally printed in 2009).

Laughter or disbelief would have been my ’80s response to any gloomy prediction that within the next 20 odd years Canada’s iconic police force would twist the outcome of a federal election. I would have rejected out of hand the suggestion that Parliament would become a largely ceremonial body incapable of performing its defining functions of safeguarding public spending and holding ministers to account. I would have treated as ridiculous any forecast that the senior bureaucracy would become politicized, that many of the powers of a monarch would flow from Parliament to the prime minister or that the authority of the Governor General, the de facto head of state, would be openly challenged.

Yet every one has happened and each has chipped away another brick of the democratic foundations underpinning Parliament. Incrementally and by stealth, Canada has become a situational democracy. What matters now is what works. Precedents, procedures and even laws have given way to the political doctrine of expediency.

No single party or prime minister is solely to blame. Since Pierre Trudeau first dismissed backbenchers as nobodies and began drawing power out of Parliament and into his office, all have contributed to the creep toward a more authoritarian, less accountable Canadian polity.

Some of the changes are understandable. Government evolves with its environment, and that environment has become more complex even as the controls have become wobblier, less connected. The terrible twins of globalization and subsidiarity — the sound theory that services are most efficiently delivered by the administrative level closest to the user — now sorely test the ability of national legislatures to respond to challenges at home and abroad. Think of it this way: Trade, the economy and the environment have all gone global while the things that matter most to most of us — health, education and the quality of city life — are the guarded responsibility of provinces and municipalities.

Politics and politicians being what they are, the reflex response is to grasp for all remaining power. Once secured, it can be used to exercise political will more easily by overruling rules and rewriting or simply ignoring laws. Power alone is effective in cross-cutting through the silo walls that isolate departments and frustrate co-ordinated policies. Important to all administrations, unfettered manoeuvring room is that much more important to minority governments desperate to maximize limited options and minimize opposition influence.

Good for prime ministers, that’s not nearly good enough for the rest of us. It fuels an inexorable power drift to the opaque political centre, creating what Donald Savoie, Canada’s eminent chronicler of Westminster parliaments, calls “court government.” It’s his clear and credible view that between elections, prime ministers now operate in the omnipotent manner of kings. Surrounded by subservient cabinet barons, fawning unelected courtiers and answerable to no one, they manage the affairs of state more or less as they please.

Prime ministers are freeing themselves from the chains that once bound them to voters, Parliament, cabinet and party. From bottom to top, from citizen to head of state, every link in those chains is stressed, fractured or broken.

Read More.

Tories Rebrand Government of Canada As Harper Government.
Jonathan Rose, for the Toronto Star.
March 3, 2011

"It is one thing for journalists or even the public to use the more partisan 'Harper government,' but it is another thing for the state to equate the Government of Canada with the leader of the governing party," said Jonathon Rose, a specialist in political communications at Queen’s University.

"The effect of this subtle framing just before an election is to equate government with Harper," said Rose. "It creates a perception of a natural affinity between one party’s leader and the act of governing."

The Harper-centric messaging prompted Rose to recall French King Louis XIV and his 17th century divine right of kings: "L'État, c’est moi," quipped the political scientist. "The state is me."

Read more.
schmevil: (daily planet)
Metropolis is screening in Toronto at the Lightbox, Tuesday and Wednesday at 8PM. Toronto people, I'll see you there, right?

I'm actually going on Wednesday. Anyone who'd like to meet up, let me know.
schmevil: (philosoraptor)
1. Atheists and charity. My working thesis is that the reason atheists donate less to charity on average than do church-going believers, is that they aren't part of charitable communities. Churches and temples regularly engage in fundraising and charitable works. Where does the atheist go for the same kind of in-built charitable community? We have to find or build that community, whereas believers are very often born into one, or can joining a large and thriving charitable community.

That atheists care less about their fellow humans is a proposition I'm going to reject outright. I give you: Bill and Melinda Gates, Warren Buffet, and even our borderline evangelist anti-theists, Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens.

2. National security, democracy, and good government. I'm of the opinion that substantive democracy requires a limited definition of national security. Fewer 'vital national interests', so governments have fewer excuses for foreign adventures. As much transparency as possible, so that the blanket of national security can't be used to hide things that must not be hidden, such as military, intelligence and governmental misconduct. A clear separation between national security and governmental integrity, ie. what hurts the party in power, does not necessarily hurt the country; or, the Prime Minister is not Canada.

The Afghan detainee scandal makes it clear: you can't have good government when the party in power is throwing around the excuse of national security. 'National security' is akin to 'terrorism' in its clarity, and in it's ability to inspire knee-jerk patriotism and panic. When a governing party starts to frame things with the rubric of national security, when they try to block the efforts of HM's Loyal Opposition, with that old boogie man, you know you're in trouble. Let's all be thankful we have such an awesome Speaker. Hail!

Anyway, I'm by no means a pacifist, but I'm deeply suspicious of security-creep. Because ultimately, national security is an excuse to go to war, to engage in all kinds of governmental tomfoolery and misconduct, it absolutely must not be allowed to expand without the input of the people. It's too important to leave up to the politicians!

3. Kids these days, and their lack of understanding of the workings of the internet. It's kind of a meme right now that Facebook will soon surpass Google, as an entry point to the internet. Facebook is already well on its way to kicking Google's ass in the 'exploiting your users for advertising dollars' department. Will Facebook soon become the world's homepage?

Firstly, I'm kind of doubtful that Facebook is going to be around for the long haul. Maybe it's reached a kind of critical mass of membership, and for that reason alone will be able to keep on trucking through the arrival of the next big thing. Maybe not. But I don't think that Facebook offers enough, is useful enough to stay in the top spot forever.

Facebook is a portal. It shapes your internet experience. Google, on the other hand, is a search tool that let's you go wherever you like. There aren't any alerts warning you that you're about to leave Google (oh noes!). There aren't the constant reminders that Jane likes Tokyo Hotel, and David would like to be friends. When Facebook is your portal to the internet, you're not really on the internet in a meaningful way. You're in the magical land of Facebookia, where everything is pre-formatted, works the same way, and connects back to your profile. If Facebook is your portal to the internet, and has always been your portal to the internet, then... do you actually know how to use the goddamn internet? Do you know what the hell it is? Do you know how to keep you and your information safe?

My experience with young teenagers says: sometimes yes, but oftentimes no. I spend a lot of time advising my ducklings on matters of internet-y import, and that just seems counterintuitive, doesn't in? They're supposed to be the internet generation!

Of course, it could just be my Facebook hate-on talking, but-- The longer a technology is around, and the more commonplace it becomes, the more users take it for granted, and the less they know about it, and how to fix it. Take cars, for example. Most people can drive. Few people know what a fanbelt looks like, much less its significance. The thing about all-encompassing portals like Facebook, is that they don't let you fiddle around, see the source code, build things yourself, or just talk about how things are built. Have we reached the drive-only internet generation?

Kids these days, get off my lawn! *grouse grouse*
schmevil: (ron)
Some minor personal triumphs I have the pleasure of reporting: I crawled out of my sickbed to jog on the treadmill, took a needle to a vexatious splinter in my thumb, and fit into my old skinny jeans. Victory is mine. \o/

In other news, the Governor General of Canada has, as predicted, prorogued Parliament. This sets a bad precedent for future governments to try to dodge confidence votes through prorogation, but had she chosen not to suspend Parliament, that would have set another bad precedent. Either way, Michaelle Jean didn't have a lot of options, and she picked the safe one: heeding the advice of the sitting Prime Minister.

So now we're plunged back into something like election mode, with all the party propaganda machines plowing full steam ahead, straight into our living rooms. Hoping to win our hearts and minds, but likely to annoy a good number of Canadians. How this plays out is very much up to the feckless Liberal party, who've spent the last two decades tearing each other to shreds. Even now, when their full support for the coalition (at least in public) is crucial, some members broke ranks, suggesting the coalition won't survive the break. The Ignatieff camp has voiced concerns that being part of the coalition cabinet could crush his treasured dreams of leadership. Truly the Liberals have reached new absurd depths of self-destructiveness.

Stephane Dion is not a compelling leader, it's true, but he's only an interim leader. So in the meantime people, you have no excuse - pull it together and win this one!


I haven't posted about art in... a long time. Here are 'Yellow Cosmos' and 'Growing From the Cracks', by Julian Messer. Art MoCo says that:

Lesser works from his imagination to recreate gardens, maps and journeys, using colour as a vehicle for thoughts and emotions. Lesser's expression results in paintings that explode with movement, pattern and flowers, of course. The artist often works with a combination of acrylic, ink and resin on paper mounted on pine.

I don't know about you guys, but I think they're gorgeous.
schmevil: (daily planet)
I'm going to make this brief, because I've caught the mother of all cold viruses and I'm due for a spell of unconsciousness in about five.

Steven Harper asked the national networks for some time today, to speak to Canadians, and explain why the new coalition could not be allowed to govern. What did he give us? Lies, and damn lies.

Throughout question period and during his remarks tonight, he characterized the coalition as being 'separatist' and 'dangerous' for Canada. This in direct contradiction of facts: the Liberals and NDP have signed an agreement to form a governing coalition, and the Bloc Quebecois have agreed to support this government on confidence votes. For the purposes of the agreement, confidence votes have been defined as a throne speech and two budgets. After that, they can either continue to support the government, or ally with the Conservatives to bring it down. They would be free to vote however they like on any other measure, and would have NO SAY in the nitty gritty of the legislative agenda. They have agreed to support this coalition, based on the broad outline which the Liberals and NDP have developed. That's it.

Steven Harper and the Conservatives keep asking, What's in it for the separatists? What's in it for them, is a rollback of all the budget and program cuts you've dropped on them. What's in it for them is an economic stimulus package. There's no mystery here. In an effort to prop up his sinking government, Harper is trying to play the nationalist card, in one of the few, non-hockey-related ways you can: by invoking the spectre of separatist Quebecois, out to destroy our country. The only trouble is that he's been working with the Bloc for years. Now, after all his cozying up to Quebecers, he's ready to demonize legitimately elected Members of Parliament. He is willing to provoke a unity crisis, in order to hang on to power.

He is burning every bridge to the Quebecers that he built. He is appealing to the worst instincts of every Canadian. He wants to kindle in our hearts base fear of those who think differently, by invoking the bogeymen of old, socialists and separatists. But in truth, there's no basis to this appeal - don't forget, the Bloc and Parti Quebecois' nationalist rhetoric has been toned down in recent years, by necessity. While the spirit of Quebec nationalism remains strong, the actuality of it has become unpopular. The imperative to form a country of their own has fallen by the wayside of sovereignty associations, or nations within a state. Harper is stirring up fears of the Bloc at a time when we have very little to fear from them.

Tomorrow we will find out the result of his meeting with the Governor General. Most likely he will ask her to prorogue (ie suspend) Parliament. Most likely she will grant his request. In spite of everything else, he still remains the sitting Prime Minister, and the Governor General would have a hard time taking an activist stance in the 21st century.

I do think the coalition can survive a prorogation, but the Liberals and NDP will have to fight tooth and nail, with the incredible political machine that is the Conservative organization. I want the coalition to survive, because I think that Harper, has finally demonstrated that he is incapable of accepting the role of the opposition. He is incapable of accepting opposition, period. Of any kind, in any place. He is a bully and a coward, and unfit for the office of Prime Minister.

Moreover, there's potential in the idea. Jack Layton, leader of the NDP said that the coalition represented a new kind of government, and that's something that I think a lot of Canadians would welcome at this point. Especially if it meant a renewal of civility and democratic dialog.

In any case, I'm to bed, with the help of a heavy dose of NyQuil. If I missed your comment, or responded late, I apologize. I worked a double yesterday, and have spent today napping and watching CBC Newsworld - I'm dead tired.
schmevil: (daily planet)
There is a phrase that I want banned: Canadian politics is boring. Canadian politics is no more boring than any other state's; like all political ecosystems it is by turns tedious and alarming. The key difference between American politics (which usually wins the competition of interest), and Canadian politics, or American politics and Finnish politics even, is money. Power too is pretty significant - when you're the world's lone hyperpower, people are bound to be fascinated by your political goings on. But money is the big difference between the American political scene, and everyone else's. Every part of their political process, from the budgets at stake, to the media conglomerates that play a big part in determining the national agenda, has more digits before the decimal in play. Even Britain, France and India, with their sophisticated and powerful media, can't quite match the Americans. (Ching-ching?) Read more... )

Before this most recent election, I said that public opinion to the contrary, this one was important. With the Conservatives now barely keeping their heads above water, and the Liberals, Bloc and NDP preparing to form a coalition, I think I've been proven right. *g* Canada may soon have its first coalition government since the First World War, the united Right is showing strain, and the fragmented Left is considering alliance. The vilified Stephan Dion is now being touted as the next Prime Minister of Canada. A shocking upset that shouldn't be a shock to people who have been paying attention to the pressure cooker the House has become. Harper has spent his time in government running roughshod over media elites, opposition politicians and even his own party. The recent move to end public funding to political parties is only the latest salvo, in a sustained cold war with the Left.

As complacent as Canadians have become since Harper first became PM, his government has never been rock solid. His ability to govern as though he had a majority, despite the Conservatives consistently taking only a minority of seats, has been the result of a fragmented and confused opposition, made up of the NDP, who've never really held power, the Bloc, who don't exactly want it, and a Liberal party ravaged by two decades of bloody infighting. But now, thanks to Flaherty's laughable economic report, the move to end public financing of political parties and eliminate the right of public employess to strike, the Conservatives have handed their opposition the greatest gift of all: issues around which all three parties can form a consensus that will serve as the foundation of a broader agenda. Harper has been saying for years that the Left should unite (for various reasons that I won't get into), but now he's managed to get them united in precisely the worst possible way for him, and at the worst possible time.

Hilariously, the Conservatives are trying the mesmerize the Canadian public into supporting them with blatant lies about our political system. Are you ready to debunk some myths? Let's go. Read more... )

Now, the coalition is not a done deal. Harper could still prorogue Parliament. The Governor General could call yet another election (sigh!). Needless to say, I think that any suspension of parliamentary activity to support a faltering Conservative government would be the worst sort of hypocrisy, from a party that continues to campaign on ethics (ha!).

This story has more details.

Liberals, NDP, Bloc Sign Deal On Proposed Coalition
December 1, 2008

The six-point accord includes a description of the role of the Liberal and NDP caucuses, which will meet separately and will sit next to each other on the government benches in the House of Commons, Dion told a news conference alongside Layton and Duceppe.

The proposed coalition cabinet will be composed of 24 ministers and the prime minister. Six of these ministers will be appointed from within the NDP caucus.

The accord will expire on June 30, 2011, unless it is renewed. It includes a "policy accord" to address the "present economic crisis," which states that the accord "is built on a foundation of fiscal responsibility."

An economic stimulus package will be the new government's top priority, while other policies include a commitment to improve child benefits and childcare "as finances permit."

There is also a commitment to "pursue a North American cap-and-trade market" to limit carbon emissions.

The Bloc Québécois would not officially be a part of the coalition, but the new government's survival would depend on its support.


Oct. 15th, 2008 02:25 pm
schmevil: (sad panda)
Conservative minority. Big surprise. The Liberals continue to be plagued by a host of organizational and leadership problems. No one but the Bloc really got out the vote. Even they struggled in some ridings. It's going to be years before we see a strong majority, but it would be nice to see more movement than ten seats for the $300 million we spent on this election.

Canadian federal politics: an exercise in frustration.

A couple of people expressed the opinion that if Michael Ignatieff had been elected Liberal leader, they wouldn't have had as poor a showing. This flies in the face of the serious organizational and image problems of the party, and the significant dislike for the man, outside the Liberal base. The thing is, Ignatieff supported the war in Iraq. He supported the Neo-Con agenda and even water-boarding. He's descended from Russian gentry and writes interminably long and wordy opinion pieces worthy of Lord Black. There are reasons for the dislike.

Bob Rae, another leadership possibility, is largely despised in Ontario for his days as an NDP premier, disliked by the center for his association with the left, and by the rust belt for his Rhodes-scholar-smarty-pants-ness. That leaves... who exactly?

Putting aside the leadership quandary there's still the lingering odour of the Sponsorship Scandal, the damage done by over ten years of infighting, and ten more of arrogance and right-shifting. There is nothing that could have won this election for the Liberals, short of Steven Harper being discovered to be a sex offender. But they definitely could have done better. *cringe*

I feel so betrayed by my fellow Ontarians, who continue to defect to the Conservatives.

The good news of this election is threefold:

1) Conservative minority, not majority. This is good news insofar as it will be somewhat harder for Harper to implement his environmentally destructive agenda. Yay. It also forces him to continue to play to the center, at least a little. He can't go all fundie whackjob on us.

2) The NDP and Green parties had strong showings in the popular vote. Yes, the NDP fell short of their historic high number of seats, but they have enough to be a voice in Parliament, and that's crucial. With the Liberals spinning their collective wheels, the NDP are the Conservatives most effective critics. The Greens failed to capture a single seat, thanks in part to leader Elizabeth May's foolish decision to run against Conservative mainstay Peter McKay. Their share of the popular vote went up and though they don't have a voice in Parliament, the attention the campaign has lent them, will make them legitimate players on the national stage. Even if only as a pressure group, it's pressure that needs to be brought to bear on the government.

3) Michel Fortier, the former Conservative Senatorial appointee failed in his bid to be elected MP. HA and HA HA!

Something I don't care about nearly as much as the national media elites think I do: Justin Trudeau has been elected to Parliament. You can't see it, but my eyes are rolling. Freaking rolling over the disgusting coverage of this issue. It's ok guys, I can do without a another political royal family dynasty.

Ho hum.
schmevil: (black flash)
I have voted. Huzzah. Let's hope this Parliament outlasts and outperforms the last two.

Heard in class today: Sir Thomas (of Austen's Mansfield Park) "is a good slave owner."

Sorry, what? I didn't know there were such things as 'good' slave owners. Pray tell, what are the criteria for being a 'good' slave owner'.

"He treated Fanny nicely."

Riiiight. Go to hell, classmate mine.
schmevil: (personality dead)
Eunoia, by Christian Bok was posted on [ profile] greatpoets today.

Relentless, the rebel peddles these theses, even when vexed peers deem the new precepts ‘mere dreck’. The plebes resent newer verse; nevertheless, the rebel perseveres, never deterred, never dejected; heedless, even when hecklers heckle the vehement speeches. We feel perplexed whenever we see these exerpted sentences. We sneer when we detect the clever scheme – the emergent repetend: the letter E. We jeer; we jest. We express resentment. We detest these depthless pretenses – these present-tense verbs expressed pell-mell. We prefer genteel speech, where sense redeems senselessness.

It's an interesting piece, one I've never read before. I try as much as possible to avoid Bok. The deal is, I studied modern Canadian fiction under him, and he made a vast array of brilliant works unreadable, by virtue of his blinding pretension. I still can't make it through the first chapter of Mauve Desert without cringing, and By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept is staring at me from my bookshelf, as I type this. My seminar leader, a friend of his, refused to meet with me regarding course work, after I confessed to taking the course in order to fulfill a degree requirement, and all but drove me out of the class. It was one of my worst experiences with the post-secondary education system. Somehow I can't get past my distaste for the man, to see the work for itself.


Have you seen today's utterly ridic Writer's Block Question?

It’s the Day of German Unity, marking the 1990 reunification of East and West Germany. In our current period of global instability, do you ever feel nostalgic for the seeming simplicity of the Cold War?

I'm extremely pleased with all the boggling going on in the responses.

Quoting [ profile] filbypott for truth: This is one of the most insultingly stupid things I've read all day, and I've read defenses of Sarah Palin. Whoever wrote this should be ashamed.

[ profile] psychox says: Yes. I often long for an era when the planet was constantly two steps away from nuclear annihilation. . . . I'm...going to pretend I didn't see this question.

Actually, I'm going to pretend that by "simplicity," the prompt is referring to the balance of power between two nation-states deadlocked by the concept of mutually-assured-destruction. And I'm going to presume that "global instability" is referring to the dangers of living in a world dominated by the one superpower that emerged triumphant after the Cold War to become the world hegemony.

If I can't convince myself of that, I'm going to pretend this prompt never happened.

Me too, dude. Me too.
schmevil: (daily planet)
You can watch the French language debate live right now, in French or English translation. Right now they're talking about climate change. Gilles Duceppe and Elizabeth May are lighting into Steven Harper in the round table discussion. It's gold.

Am I the only one who's getting frustrated with media portrayals of the Green Shift as being incomprehensible to the average Canadian?

A) The average Canadian is more than capable of understanding political policy.

B) The Green Shift is actually quite simple. Tax carbon emissions, lower income tax. Revenue neutral. Done. (Well, not that simple but come on, through people a text box with some bullet points and they'll be fine).
schmevil: (Default)
I hate the IOC. I've hated them for years but today I found an exciting new reason to despise those assholes.

Olympic mottoes borrow lines from O Canada
Two phrases borrowed from Canada's national anthem have been chosen as the mottoes for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, and organizers have already moved to protect the commercial rights to the lines.

The lines "With glowing hearts" from the English version and "Des plus brillants exploits" from the French version will soon be emblazoned on Olympic merchandise and promotional material as a national campaign to promote the mottoes is rolled out across Canada this fall.

The phrases were recently trademarked by the Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee in anticipation of the announcement, it was revealed Wednesday.

Cory Doctorow had this to say:
The International Olympic Committee has trademarked a line from the Canadian national anthem, "with glowing hearts," and is threatening to sue anyone who uses the line in Canada, as part of the Vancouver Games.

This is par for the course. The IOC is a corrupt, bullying, greedy, hypocritical organization that uses trademark laws to limit the free speech and commerce of people who have the misfortune to attend or live near the games -- for example, in Athens, they forced people to take off or cover up t-shirts that had logos for companies that hadn't paid to sponsor the Olympics; and in Washington, they attacked decades-old businesses named after nearby Mount Olympia.

The Olympics cloak themselves in the rhetoric of international cooperation and development, but everything they touch turns to garbage: totalitarian surveillance camps where corporate greed rules all. The Canadian IOC ought to be disbanded over this -- it's an affront to the entire nation.

I'm not generally a ra ra nationalist but really, IOC? Really? You're trademarking our national anthem. You're trademarking the word WINTER. Could you get more patently ridiculous, more blindly grasping, more desperately in need of sucking host countries dry of every last drop of profit? More determined to keep up the pitiful, endlessly glittering, cannibalistic hucksterism and spectacle, lest the international community wake up at last to the great sham of brotherhood you've sold us?

Our national anthem is not your property. The word winter is not your fucking property.


In other news, this site is so me. How did I not know about this site?! Caffeine-fueled movie marathons aren't a lifestyle choice in the house of [ profile] schmevil. They're an imperative.

Oh, and this! George Romero's script for Resident Evil? Donkey balls! It's not that I worship the man (as so many zombie fans do) but it's hard to deny that a Romeo Evil would have made for interesting viewing. It could not be more different from the movie that finally got made.
schmevil: (daily planet)
In me news...

- Went to see Des Fraises en Janvier. Very cute. Lulz factor of five. I particularly enjoy the sets at Theatre Francais de Toronto - they're always so bright, open and creatively multi-purpose.

- Going to see Evil Dead the Musical for THIRD TIME. This show is so utterly <3able. The songs are spun from the purest of comedy gold.

- And later, Kudelka's Cinderella. I saw his Nutcracker over the holidays and was sold on him. There's just something fresh and accessible about his choreography.

- The Mirvish Group has announced they're going to put on a production of Medea, starring Seanna McKenna - total must see, as far as I'm concerned.

- AND! This year's season at Stratford includes: Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet and The Taming of the Shrew.



Addicted to Power: Dion's deadly Afghan double-deal shows he'd rather count body bags than combat Tories
The Tories and the Libs believe in war, a mutual conviction cemented last week when Liberal leader Stephane Dion agreed to their pact to extend Canada’s war commitment in Afghanistan until at least 2011.

On the other side altogether, the NDP is a pacifist party that pushes more creative options for conflict resolution than blowing the shit out of people who have different beliefs than your own.

Michael Hollet
NOW Magazine

[Disclaimer: not interested in doing a comprehensive post on the war, just looking at a couple of things that bugged me - the following does not constitute the entirety of my thoughts on yaoi the mission.]

I couldn't disagree more with the characterization of the Conservatives and Liberals as being in love with war. Power? Yes, obviously - we all know this. The Liberals are a brokerage party and Stephen Harper the supposed idealogue is, in office, compromising like his life depends on it. Or like his grasp on power depends on it, which it does. Because in case Michael Hollet failed to notice - Canada has a minority government at the moment. A minority government lead by men who utterly loathe the sight, nay the very thought of one another. The fact that the government is functional at all is thanks to political compromises made by all parties.

I'm tired of rabid idealogues who think that 'compromise' is a dirty word. Guess what assholes, compromise is what democratic politics is all about!

And honestly, I'm incredibly fucking tired of pacifists who characterize non-pacifists as 'war-loving'. It's just the most ridiculous of philosophical tomfoolery. The mission in Afghanistan is not about 'blowing the shit out of people who have different beliefs than your own'. Sorry dude, but on this I'm not going to compromise because you could not be more wrong. The mission is about several things, and none of them have anything to do with a deep-seated desire to kill, maim or blow the shit out of people.Read more... )

July 2012

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