Enough with the spam NDP!

Not sure if I mentioned previously but I’m a member of all 3 political parties (yes I know you pledge to only be on one but I’m on all 3 to support causes I believe in), anyway I’m use to getting daily mail and calls from all the major parties but god damn, yesterday I received six emails from the NDP!  That’s super annoying and while at the moment I’m not sure who to vote for, it certainly doesn’t make me want to vote NDP!

TPP will be a disaster

The history of free trade agreements has not been kind to the western world and I’m not happy that Canada has jumped onto this potential disaster.  I understand the concept of free trade and in theory it sounds wonderful but the TPP bits that have come out sound like a huge giveaway to large corporations (hello, companies suing countries for lost profits if they impose new laws…) and will not benefit Canada.  Thankfully here it requires the approval of parliament so it’s still possible to stop this mess.  Not sure if they can ram this through in the lame duck session after the federal election though.

I guess history will tell us if this new free trade pact will be beneficial to everyone or just companies and the countries with lower cost labour.

Nice article!

I haven’t posted much about the ongoing Canadian federal election because well it’s not as exciting as the US one even though that’s more than a year away.  Anyway I watched the Republican debate last night and my god what a joke, it’s a complete circus and while I despise Donald Trump, I have to say with him in the race a lot more people are paying attention to politics and that’s a good thing.

With an ironic twist, other than Trump saying he’d raise some taxes on wealthy I think I disagreed with pretty much everything the candidates said but I guess that’s not a surprise since I’m progressive on both social and fiscal matters.

Anyway on the Democratic side Bernie Sanders is gaining momentum and Time wrote a nice piece on him.

Without a single TV ad–or a single congressional endorsement–Sanders has exposed the weakness of the party’s Clintonian establishment while at the same time spotlighting its hunger for an ideological savior. Polls now indicate that if the nominating contests were held tomorrow, Sanders would edge out Clinton in Iowa and beat her in New Hampshire by 10 points. Nationally, he has cut Clinton’s lead from an impregnable 46 points to a crumbling 21 points in just two months.

But even those metrics don’t convey the extent of the Sanders phenomenon. At Clinton events, campaign staffers section off floor space before her speeches to make her crowds look densely packed. Sanders needs no barriers. His audiences are authentically huge–28,000 in Oregon, 11,000 in Arizona, 7,500 in Maine. His volunteer army, meanwhile, though mostly self-organized online, numbers more than 182,000 people spread out from rural Alaska to the Florida Keys, people who have asked the campaign how to improvise events, knock on doors and spread the gospel from campus quad to living room to farmer’s market.

Source: Time

I’m definitely a Bernie supporter and even though his views may actually hurt the Canadian/US relationship, I’m hoping that his economic policies can actually influence our politicians to do the same.  I guess we’ll have to see how their election plays out…

As to the Canadian election, sigh I don’t know who to vote for as I don’t like any of the three major parties.

Accept my bigotry!

I can’t help but LOL at this article, if your religion stops you from giving out marriage licenses to gays & lesbians then you’re working in the wrong job.

A county clerk in Kentucky who has invoked “God’s authority” and is defying the U.S. Supreme Court by refusing to license same-sex marriage has been summoned along with her entire staff to explain to a federal judge why she should not face stiff fines or jail time.

U.S. District Judge David Bunning moved swiftly Tuesday after a lesbian couple asked him to find Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis in contempt. Davis told several couples and a crowd of supporters and protesters that her religious beliefs prevent her from sanctioning gay marriage, and then retreated again, closing her office door and blinds to the raucous scene outside.

The U.S. Supreme Court declined to intervene Monday night, leaving Davis no legal ground for her continued refusal Tuesday morning. Lawyers for the two gay couples who originally sued her asked the judge Tuesday to find her in contempt, but punish her with only financial penalties, not jail time.
Source: TalkingPointsMemo

Got to love being able to discriminate by blaming god.

Just wrong no matter who does it

So while I love to read about politics around the world, I haven’t posted much about ISIS and the fight against them because frankly I see it as a regional thing that needs to be solved by the locals rather than have the Western world intervene. Anyway, there’s this guy nammed Abu Azrael who’s part of the Shia militias fighting against ISIS (so a good guy by definition because he’s our ally) and he does some of the most disgusting things.

A captured ISIS terrorist was suspended over a fire, burned to death and then sliced up like a KEBAB by a rebel fighter nicknamed the ‘Angel of Death’.

Footage released online shows fearsome Abu Azrael, one of ISIS’ most feared enemies and a poster boy for Shi’a militias, committed the sickening act as a warning to his enemies.

The hulking fighter laughs as he cuts the dead ISIS terrorists leg with a curved sword, then turns to the camera and says: “ISIS this will be your fate, we will cut you like shawarma (a method of grilling meat on a spit and then shaving it off)”.
Source: Mirror UK

Yes I know the site is a tabloid style site but in any case the media is talking about this guy as if he’s a hero, he’s not he’s a fucking psycho… Just because he’s on “our side” doesn’t make this type of thing right, we’re outraged by the cruelty of ISIS on its captured prisoners and this is no different. If these are our allies on the ground, they are no better than the people we’re fighting and the history of Western intervention in the middle east has been a disaster.

What’s the solution to the middle east’s problem with violence, I don’t know but anything achieved through military means will simply be a short term fix. You can’t impose “freedom” on a group of people and Western style democracy doesn’t work everywhere… Perhaps we need to let the local population figure out what it wants to do and let them handle it their way no matter what occurs. I know it sounds terrible but the fight is not ours and those groups have been fighting for centuries over the same stupid qualms, perhaps it’ll only stop when they decide the fighting isn’t worth it anymore.

Very clever

While I might disagree with a lot of Donald Trump’s policies, I have to say he’s turning out to be pretty savvy at keeping his base motivated to support him. From illegal immigration to being honest about buying politicians, now he’s talking about how bankers pay much less tax than the regular working person.

“The hedge fund guys didn’t build this country. These are guys that shift paper around and they get lucky,” Trump said.

“They are energetic. They are very smart. But a lot of them – they are paper-pushers. They make a fortune. They pay no tax. It’s ridiculous, ok?”

Trump’s comments were referring to the so-called “carried interest loophole” – a provision in the tax code which allows private equity and hedge fund managers pay taxes at the capital gains rate instead of the ordinary income rate.

Many fund managers are in the top income bracket, but the capital gains tax bracket is only 20 percent.

While these individuals are also required to pay an additional 3.8 percent surtax on their net investment income, this total rate is still far lower than the 39.6 percent rate that top wage earners must pay on their ordinary income.

“Some of them are friends of mine. Some of them, I couldn’t care less about,” Trump said.

“It is the wrong thing. These guys are getting away with murder. I want to lower the rates for the middle class.”
Source: Reuters

That will resonate well with his base and the general electorate in the US, I would hate for him to become President but if some wacky way he wins maybe he will crack down on Wall St. who knows.

Nailed it

I generally don’t like hackers who wreak havoc on systems and when AshleyMadison was hacked earlier in the year I thought it was terrible because a lot of people’s lives will be ruined if/when the data is leaked. Well data is starting to come out and one of the first “casualties” is Josh Duggar and frankly, fuck that guy.

In my opinion it’s different for him because he’s spent his life preaching about morality, the sanctity of marriage and about how gays will molest kids if the opportunity arises. Well it came out that when he was a teenager, he molested a bunch of girls (including his sister) and now it’s come out that he’s a paying member of AshleyMadison… While that doesn’t mean he cheated on his wife, in his confession he admitted to it so bam guilty. Of course right wingers will still hold up this piece of shit as a moral upstanding Christian but what I always wonder is why are the biggest loudmouths the biggest hypocrites?

I saw this in RawStory and couldn’t agree more.

“Josh Duggar is not a private citizen,” Savage said. “He is a public figure who has benefitted politically and financially from attacking other people for their marriages, for their sex lives, how they conduct themselves, for their alleged — in his opinion — immorality, and so his immorality is germane. His hypocrisy makes him, in this instance, a legitimate target for an outing of this sort.”
Source: RawStory

Where is the outrage from the religious right in the US? Of course there’s none, not when it’s one of their own… Frankly the way I look at it, it’s none of my business what married couples do but when you’re a public figure preaching against the very things one is doing then you’re just a hypocrite and deserve to be outed.

Can’t the right just leave people alone, if you don’t like gay marriage then don’t marry someone from the same sex. If you want to cheat on your spouse or watch porn fine, that’s between the married couple but don’t publicly state to others how something is wrong and then do it yourself.

Go Bernie!

As you know I enjoy American politics very much and found this piece by Ann Coulter very interesting.  Now let me say I disagree with her on pretty much everything but here, she’s pretty bang on.

Coulter: I wish Fox News would go a little easier on Hillary Clinton. She’s the one we want to run against. Could you guys just back off? Because I feel like I’m living through this, I feel like this is déjà vu again. We used to say, ‘Oh, the next president isn’t going to be a guy named Barack Hussein Obama.’ Our next president could be Sen. Bernie Sanders, if you people keep this up.

Source: Ring of Fire Radio

She said it on Bill Maher’s show earlier too…

To my American friends, please take a look at Senator Sanders’ platform…  While he’s an openly declared democratic socialist, I think many will agree with his points of view.

Clever

While I’m not a fan of political attack ads, I have to say this one hit the nail on the head…

I hate the “I am not a scientist” line and have ranted about that previously but this shows that all Republican candidates are insane for denying that climate change is occurring and it’s possible for one of them to become the President!  The science is clear, on average the planet is warming which means we’ll have more and more extreme weather events.

Hillary Clinton put out this video which I thought was pretty good and it’s nice to see her environmental position.  I may disagree with many of her other positions but it’s nice to see she’s taking green concerns seriously.

Going renewable makes so much sense, once the infrastructure has been laid all the energy produced is essentially free so there shouldn’t be any hold up but big business is getting in the way because the fossil fuel industry stands to lose a lot of money.  I always found it ridiculous that the pursuit of money is more important than the survival of our species…  Make no mistake the planet will go on sustaining life but whether we can adapt to the new conditions is the unknown factor.

To my American friends, don’t believe the lies that the Right spews and god will not save us from this problem.  We can make a difference and the US as leader of the world needs to take the first step and show the other countries that when there’s a political will, there’s also a way forward.

Privatized profits and socialized losses AGAIN?!?

So here’s something I didn’t know about the Greek financial crisis, apparently when Greece racked up all its debt the money was owed to private banks. Instead of letting the country default on the private debt (which happens sometimes), the publicly backed ECB and the IMF paid off the country’s loans and assumed the debt.  So in essence because stupid private banks lent too much money to Greece and didn’t do their homework, instead of losing on their investment the public institutions came in and bailed them out!

Ugh why aren’t more people upset that banks have a system in place where they can privatize their profits but socialize their losses?!?  This is like a bad reoccurring joke, when will people wake up to the reality of “capitalism”, god I hope Bernie Sanders wins the presidency in the US in 2016 so he can break up the big banks as they’re a major threat to world stability.

Stay strong Greece, more pain is coming but imposed austerity from others is not the answer.