Thursday, December 18, 2008
What to make about the fact that Canada's Finance Minister has told Canada's banks to alter their credit policies?
- Jim Flaherty thinks that the best way out of an economic mess that was caused by too much credit going to iffy people is to give even more credit to even more iffy people.
- Jim Flaherty thinks he knows better than privately-owned corporations what strategies are profitable for them.
- Jim Flaherty thinks privately-owned corporations will choose to make decisions that are not in their best interests because he asked them to.
- Jim Flaherty thinks privately-owned corporations will choose to make decisions that are not in their best interests because they feel they owe him a favour for his past actions.
- Jim Flaherty knows damn well that the banks will continue to make decisions that are in their own best interests, but is merely setting the groundwork for being able to publicly blame the banks later on if the economy really really really goes in the crapper and he needs to score some political points at a later date.
Monday, December 15, 2008
A bailout is not "stimulus". It is a bailout.
Or, more likely, a fun exercise in both pissing money down an endless sinkhole while simultaneously delaying economic progress.
Lessee, here in Canada, we've got bailouts underway for autos, forestry, mining (mining??), and shipbuilding. Oh, and an assumption of risk from the banks, who were doing just fine anyway. Who wants to guess what's next?
I'm looking forward to the Great Chewing Gum Bailout of '09.
Friday, November 28, 2008
- Do you think the opposition parties could defeat the government in a vote anyway? The Tories would just have to snag a handful of votes from a couple of maverick opposition MPs (including the 2 independent MPs).
- Getting rid of the per-vote party subsidy is something that I wholeheartedly agree with; however, it would have been nice if it had been in the Conservative election platform. I think it makes it at least somewhat defensible to defeat the government when they're trying to pass through something they didn't really get a mandate for. An alternative: Introduce separate legislation that would phase out the per-vote subsidy after 2-3 years. This would give the other parties a fair chance to remember how to fundraise again. (And the Bloc can just fuck right off anyway.)
- The Tories would be better able to defend their avoidance of deficit spending in the mini-budget if Harper hadn't been flip-flopping like a Pacific salmon out of its bucket on the issue of deficits over the past several weeks.
- Having said that, I don't think it's defensible to defeat the government on the other aspects of the economic update alone. The Conservatives have won a mandate to be the government, and they ran on an election platform of a cautious, conservative fiscal approach in a difficult economy. They have the right to implement that approach.
- It seems stupid anyway to think it's imperative to start shovelling around money we don't have on random things just for the sake of wanting to look like invoking decisive action. Things aren't that bad yet, and it's not clear what's going to happen next anyway. Why panic?
- I do find it distasteful that Harper has now postponed the "opposition days" to put off any potential confidence vote. I sure as hell didn't like it when PM PM pulled the same stunt in 2005. I think Harper should say, "We're doing what we think is right, and if we don't have the confidence of the House, I want to know right now. Have at 'er."
- Regarding the following sequence of events: (1) Government defeated on confidence motion (2) GG refuses new election and invites opposition party(s) to try to form a governement (3) Opposition coalition gaining the confidence of the House; I put odds of this happening at about 5% probability or less.
- The Liberals just don't know what the hell to do with themselves when they're not in power, do they?
- The opposition parties are probably just playing chicken as well, anyway.
- Krankor made me put this in bullet form instead of writing a well thought out essay.
Monday, November 24, 2008
I know I'm reading something into this that almost certainly isn't true, but in my mind what I love best about this story is the possibility that the protesters chose to show up at Toronto's Old City Hall without knowing that the municipal government left for new digs back in the 60s.
Friday, November 14, 2008
Thursday, November 06, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
We have come to the final showdown, and it's time to show my cards. Krankor and Ignatz have put up a good fight, but I have the Royal Flush hand: Mel Lastman.
The guy did a bang-up job of ensuring that the 2008 Summer Olympics did not go to Toronto, but instead, that classy, peace-loving, exemplary, world-loved town of Beijing.
"What the hell do I want to go to a place like Mombasa? I just see myself in a pot of boiling water with all these natives dancing around me." -- Toronto Mayor Mel Lastman
This really was just the tip of the iceberg in a career of buffoonery. He is missed.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
There is no such thing as a free lunch.
Really, there isn't.
Get over it!
So it has come to the point where I can no longer locate any politicians in the Western world that are actually proponents of free markets. (Other than a couple of guys that are nutso for other reasons.) I mean, maybe there are some that believe in markets privately, but in public they take the position of a pandering jackass.
In the upcoming Canadian federal election, I have 7 candidates representing 7 parties to choose from to vote for MP in my lovely home riding of Oshawa. As near as I can tell, each one of the candidates and parties is in favour of increasing the size of government.
(I'm sure my brother will tell me that the Conservatives are in favour of reducing the size of government, but really, where's the evidence of that? Show me, don't tell me.)
I'm voting for Bill The Cat.
Friday, September 12, 2008
I am only responding to brother Ig's tag because I've had a couple of beers.
1. Where was I ten years ago? Being an unemployed bum in Dartmouth, NS. However, my keen brain was finally beginning to realize that a life plan of sitting on a couch needed a bit of fine-tuning, and began to think about getting the hell out of Dodge.
2. What was on my To Do list today? Preparing for a planned evacuation alarm / fire drill at my office (for some foolish reason, I have volunteered to be our business' Lead Fire Warden). Working on some internal communications (half done). Trying to prepare for a business requirements session conference call, which was naturally pre-empted by the actual fire alarm (muddled through it). Pass the buck on a customer upgrade campaign (success!). Answer 10,000 emails (success! - okay, not that many). Pretending to analyze some data (I need me some of those Homer Simpson glasses that have pictures of open eyeballs on the lenses).
And more importantly, buying a tank of gas (a mere $85), buying beer (less than half of that), and taking the missus out to dinner as we like to do on Fridays. I also planned to watch the Jays beat the Sox tonight, but that didn't work out for obvious reasons.
3. What would I do if I were a billionaire? (a) Seriously consider paying cash in the U.S. for back surgery for the missus. (b) Buy a house. (c) Put a CFL expansion team in Halifax. (d) Travel, travel, travel.
4. Five places I've lived: Dartmouth, NS; North York, ON (okay, only for 3 summers); Halifax NS; Kingston ON; Dartmouth NS; Oshawa, ON; A State Of Denial.
5. Bad habits: Almost missing the bus; Eating at restaurants too often; Drinking all of the beer in the fridge until it's gone; Not looking at people; Not exercising; Entering the far lane directly after making a turn; Leaving work at 4:00 p.m. (Oh wait, that's a good habit); Fiddling with my Blackberry when I should be doing something else.
Now, I will tag: Paul Splittorf, Carrot Top, Bootsauce, Strom Thurmond, and Snuffleupagus.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Monday, September 01, 2008
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Friday, August 22, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
Monday, May 12, 2008
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Monday, May 05, 2008
Monday, April 21, 2008
Apparently, my younger brother thinks that my new job is like being one of "The Bobs", consultants to Initech -- interviewing people to see if they get to keep their job.
God, if only it were so. That'd be sweet.
My older brother thinks that I'm too busy in my job as a "scheming backroom troll" to post to my neglecterino blog. I will accept the label, if being a troll entails hiding under a bridge and clubbing people as they try to sneak by.
Actually, I've been busy playing house as my better half has made an impromptu several-week trip to snow-bound Calgary to visit her ailing grandmother. But things are looking up.
Meanwhile, Krankor and El Cerdo have baited me into sharing my own list of in-jokes. Which will be funny to no one except me. Here you go:
1. "Maple -- powerful package."
2. "I ain't missing polar bears. I ain't missing no f***ing polar bears."
3. "Look, a Venn diagram!"
4. "I cleaned the booth." (singing) "I cleaned the booth!"
5. A Bunch of Slackers
6. Minimum Rage
7. "May I speak with Ruth?" "I'm sorry?" "My terminal says 'call for Ruth'." "Uh, it's 'Call for AUTH'."
8. Joe F***ing Phone Books
9. "Hey, I think I saw that guy today that looks like a frightened squirrel."
10. "What's that guy's name -- Febreeze? Dale said his name was Febreeze." "It's Fabrice." "Shut up! His name is Febreeze!"
11. "The Rat's boyfriend sucks at chess. But he nearly won. I was too drunk to see all the way across the board, I could only play on my half."
12. "Harry Potter screwed up my order at McDonald's again."
13. "Brown is a poopy colour."
14. "It's Mr. Crack!"
15. "Hey, look it's Doug Henning! Doug, are you going to make Niagara Falls disappear?!"
Monday, March 03, 2008
Saturday, March 01, 2008
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Thursday, January 24, 2008
Sunday, January 20, 2008
Saturday, January 19, 2008
Jack thinks that the solution to high cellphone fees is more government regulation, not more competition.
I'm not sure why we should expect the same cell rates as Americans anyway. Can you think of some reasons why Canadians might pay more than Americans for wireless service? Maybe because we're a small population spread out over a huge landmass? Dontcha think our per capita infrastructure costs might be a bit higher?
Along with Jack's nonsense on ATM fees and credit card interest rates, I wonder if
1. Jack is really this dumb.
2. Jack is just playing politics with stupid people, or: