Archive for September, 2011

Con’s Just Pulled a Big Oops.

Harper’s reaction to Brad Trost’s press conference could be the difference between the Conservatives winning or losing the next election.

Realistically very few people think that this position is not shared by Harper himself, most feel it was a trial balloon being floated by an expendable backbencher who has a strong party loyalty and strong enough views to be believed, while still being willing to bite the bullet if the position hurt’s the party’s re-election chances.

This type of thing should be expected a few times over the next couple of years as Harper and his minions attempt to figure out how much of his win is people that believe in his ultimate mindset and how much is people trying to find someone to vote for other then the troubled liberal party.

Other things that are likely on the agenda are gay marriage and capital punishment. Both of which would make hard core right wing Con supporters extremely happy.

The issue is whether the Harper government feels they have sufficient support to push some of these agendas because if they think they do, then even more of our rights will go down the tube. Many people warned that the Conservatives had a hidden agenda and it is starting to look like there might have been some truth  to it.

The only hope for these laws not being overturned is an outcry that is sufficiently louder then those who want it overturned. An outcry that is loud enough to make Harper actually concerned that if he does not end this type of mindset his party may just end up in a similar place to the liberals.

Honestly barring a major change in Con policy and a new Liberal leader that can really connect with the Canadian people for the first time in a long time, this country could be looking at it’s first ever NDP government with a Green party opposition. That is the level of disaster that is now facing the Harper Cons if they do not decide that the will of the Canadian people is of greater importance then the will of a small number of religious right wing power mad nuts.

In some ways this could have been one of the best things to happen to Canadians in decades. We are perhaps looking at the total annihilation of the two “natural governing parties” and the rise of a new way of looking at the way governing is done in this country.

Pension Plans: How Should They Work

Recent discussions on the pension review have led me to try to elaborate on my thoughts on how a proper pension should be set up.

Pension contributions should be split 50/50 between employer and employee and every employer should be required by law to pay into this plan.

A plan should follow a person for life. This plan should be set to be contributed into by each and every employer who this one individual works for from their very first job. The contribution should be such that if the person was to work that job from ages 20 to 65 the pension would pay out 100% wages till the persons death.

All pension plans as well should include full dental and medical coverage as a person of advanced years should not be worrying about these expenses.

Plans also should include a reduced rate option for those who choose to retire early and should include the option for employees to top up their plans themselves to allow for better benefits at the time they choose to retire.

This type of universal pension is what is needed now that it is becoming less and less common for the average person to work for a single company for long enough to earn a full pension.

Woodside, D’Arcy Both Wrong

I have been monitoring the issues between the D’arcy’s and Mayor Woodside and I think this really comes down to a couple of things.

The D’Arcy’s are wrong in their behaviour and forcing themselves to be thrown out of council will actually do more to hurt the anti-fracking cause then anything else that has happened so far. This is because they are attacking a person who is at least verbally agreeing with them.

However Woodside is wrong in his behaviour as well. The reason for this is that realistically what the D’Arcy’s are asking for is actually not a bad idea. The municipality has the ability to put a bylaw banning Hydro-fracking in place within city limits (and realistically I believe also within the area surrounding their water supply as well)

It is not about whether or not a new council can change the bylaw it is about standing up for your city and putting it on paper that it will not happen with this council and it also means that any council that repeals this bylaw is going to (usually) be seen doing it, giving the population of that city the opportunity to register their distaste of what is going on.

In all honesty I believe that the D’Arcy’s time would be better served working to force the provincial government to stop fracking rather then attack a person who is publicly stating their objection to fracking, while I do think Woodside needs to rethink his position on his stance regarding a bylaw.

Personal opinion is that both parties in this situation are wrong in their behaviour and both need to sit down and reevaluate how they are handling the situation and perhaps apologize to each other and the city as a whole for their behaviour in this instance.

The other cities in this province as well should look at putting in place a bylaw protecting their city and their water supply as well, perhaps going as far as to increase their borders to include their water supply if this is what is required to put proper protections in place.

There is a new breast cancer campaign and it is causing some serious controversy.

The principal at Quispamsis Elementary school is considering them “distracting”. My issue with this is simple. These are elementary children. It is the prime opportunity in their lives to get a serious message into their brains for the rest of their life. Breast Cancer can be beat but it needs to be checked for, treated and followed up on. If you are not aware of it, If you do not think on it, If you do not do it, you just might be one of the victims.

These are elementary children there is nothing wrong with using these bracelets to get their attention, and to get the message out, and their teachers and school staff are a great source of knowledge to help get this knowledge out to the students, and even by default back to the parents as well.

What is wrong though is to take these bracelets, proclaim them a bad thing and bury the issue in the closet. You are again by default teaching the children that breast cancer is something that is not discussed, that is not talked about, and it is a serious taboo. This is not the message that we need to be sending to our students.

We only improve our health and the health of our children if we are open and willing to talk about things like this that risk our health. We desperately need to change the way we look at these issues because health issues like this can not continue to be swept under the rug. We must give our children the tools to make their lives and health as good as we possibly can, and to do that we need to give them information, we need to talk to them, we can not any longer continue to make health issues a thing that is hidden in the closet and not talked about.