odds & ends

Turns out I don't have much to say about BWV's recent comments for the wmtc crowd. Just that it's a good site and worth taking a look at. The man is a British-Canadian living in Texas, for chrissakes, and hungry for poutine. Take pity and give him a page view.

ALPF outdid himself yesterday, with no less than three US-Canadian-relations LODs. (Have I lost you in acronyms? That's Links of the Day.) From The Chatanoogan, some thoughts on W's European visit, including this:
It just never seemed to dawn on anyone here that maybe a lot of Europeans just don’t have a taste for war any more like they used to and we still do. They did spend about 1500 years after the fall of Rome engaging in almost continuous warfare, and if you look at the result, you’d have to say that little was accomplished. In fact, Europe almost fought itself into complete oblivion and certainly deposed itself as the dominant power on the planet. For better or worse, we have picked up that fallen flak jacket. We still possess a jingoistic approach to war because we have never measured ours with names like the Hundred Years War, but we are slowly learning. Since our war losses have never been very significant by comparison with the rest of the world, we still suffer under the delusion that it is a practical method of accomplishing our national goals.
I like that. Howard Zinn says that human societies are addicted to war. As they said when I was growing up, wayback in the 1970s, it's time to kick the habit, join the unhooked generation.

From the Pot Calls The Kettle Black Department, the CBC notes that the US State Department issued its annual report on human rights and it was - are you sitting down? - critical of Canada:
The U.S. State Department's annual report on human rights abuses Monday noted Canada had problems with police brutality, trafficking in people and a rise in anti-Semitic acts.

Violence against women also remained a concern, said the report, with Amnesty International charging that the federal government had failed in particular to provide aboriginal women with adequate protection.

Unequal opportunities and treatment of aboriginals was another issue cited by the department.
It only gets better from there. The US report criticized Canada for government corruption and - oh doctor! - mistreatment of religious minorities. George Orwell, George Orwell, please pick up any courtesy phone...

It's not that I give Canada a pass. There's no country on earth so evolved that it can't do more to combat these serious problems. But six-pack-a-day smokers shouldn't lecture on the hazards of tobacco.

Galileo sent these beautiful interpretative photos of The Gates. They were shot in my favorite part of Central Park, the Harlem Meer. (I know I said no more Gates. These things happen.)

The Gates are being dismantled now. They turned out to be smash hit, which I'm happy about. I'm very tempted to buy one of these drawings or photos signed by Christo. I shouldn't spend the money, but it would make a beautiful centerpiece to a certain livingroom in Port Credit, and be a great New York memento.

Kyle_From_Ottawa is back from his trip to Vermont and Boston. We've been chatting about his observations and the differences between the two regions, in case you feel like joining in.

And finally, Redsock has found a title for his political blog. We've had a long-running disagreement on its existence: I wanted the political musings to stay in his baseball blog, but he wanted to separate them into two sites. I lost. (After all, they are his.) So visit (and link to) In Cold Blog if you get a chance, if only to think about all the blogworthy titles on your bookshelves.


B. W. Ventril said...

By way of pedantic clarification, I don't live in Texas. I live in a totally different Southern state. Not quite the anti-Canada that Texas is, but point taken. I still need the page views.

laura k said...

Well, who doesn't (need the page views).

By virtue of Statcounter, I think I know in which Southern state you reside, but I will not out you. Anyway, we have RobFromAlberta, so who needs Texans.


Rognar said...

Someone needs to keep you loopy lefties in touch with reality. :)

laura k said...

Just making sure you're still reading... :)

Rognar said...

I've mostly just been lurking lately. Incidentally, Alberta and Texas have a pretty strong connection (no kidding, right?). Alberta is all about oil and a lot of Texans came up here to work for US oil interests. In fact, Calgary has the highest number of American ex-pats of any city in Canada. So, b.w.ventril is a bit off the mark calling Texas the "anti-Canada". Texas is more like the "anti-Ontario".

B. W. Ventril said...

Not if Alberta is also the anti-Canada too!

Rognar said...

All in good time.

Kyle_From_Ottawa said...

When I followed the link to the Chatanoogan, I was a little startled about them talking about "Ann Coulter" for mayor. Fortunately, it's not the same Ann Coulter (also known as that crazy woman) that I thought.

laura k said...

Holy cow, if I were the woman running for mayor, I'd change my name!

Kyle_From_Ottawa said...

It seems Bush is put off with us again. He won't return Martin's calls, and Condi's cancelled her visit, all because we said no to a useless missle defence system.

The days of "freedom bacon" are probably just around the corner.