Friday, 14 December 2012

The Essence of Innocence...Why Good People Become Targets

December 14, 2012,

While many of you were busy spending money on Christmas gifts or at work like myself, a young man, armed with an arsenal of weapons and his soon to be deceased brother's ID walked into an elementary school and took the lives of 28 people, 20 of them being children.

The details of what happened next are only important for the law enforcement officials investigating the crime scene. Everything else falls on to the important question of how something like this could have occurred?
Why do terrorists bomb plazas? Why do gunmen aim at often innocent and unarmed individuals?

Death is a natural progression within humanity and society at large, we are born and we eventually die. What is key however, is the importance of progression, we live to grow and eventually hope to die in old age. When the lives of people are taken away in such a cruel manner and "before their time", people stand back in awe and begin to question. This is a normal process during a time of crisis and here at The Political Road Map, it is relied upon as an important tool.

Do the victims a favor and yourself one to, do not worry about who this gunman was. Christmas is just around the corner, focus your energy on understanding why this action happened and more importantly on the essence of innocence and life. Unfortunate events like the one that has occurred today can be categorized as a "something has to eventually give" moment, defined only as something that makes you stand still and question why you are here. This is also why madmen, terrorists and dictators alike use violence against good and innocent people, because in society we have defined how an average life should be lived out and no one wants to die today or tomorrow. We want to live and have families and grow together, under the safety net that we believe we live in.

This is why it is important that we do not publicize the name of the individual responsible for such a disgraceful act. You want to stop further actions like this from happening, then you need to learn to deny these individuals the negative publicity they seek. You see, whether this cowardly action occurs on the micro or macro level, it is done simply to gather a name for the individual(s) involved. Breaking the safety net we call society is how individuals believe they will be remembered or become idolized among others like them. If we deny these individuals that fame, we make progress toward prohibiting this kind of activity.

More importantly, our politicians need to start thinking about legislation that focuses on aiding individuals with mental illness or depression, because often times many of these brutal events are the direct result of someone falling between the cracks and thus entering a grey zone. Feeling alone, these individuals who are screaming for help, are left with nothing but emptiness that they unfortunately end up filling with anger. 

Give your family an extra hug tonight and count your blessings, you exist, your alive and were lucky enough to not be in the path of a bullet today. If only people would consider these important questions on a daily basis and not only when something bad has happened, who knows what progress we could achieve.

Peace Upon You,

Until Next Time!

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

What Israel/Palestine Need are an Icon

I get it, your wondering why I am still blogging about this topic after the media has already seemed to forget about it in it's entirety! My answer to you is that here at the Political Road Map, we do not forget about things that easily, it is tough, but this is politics and that is how the game is played!

We all know how Stephen Harper feels about Palestine and he is welcome to show his opinion on the matter. Now, to stop myself from becoming an all out anti-Harper blogger, I will say that politically, Harper took a hard stand in an attempt to somehow portray to the world that Canada is tired of being a middle player. Essentially, The "Palestinian Rejection" as I will phrase is Harper's Vimy Ridge; an example of our country going it alone, while the rest do nothing or choose the other side. Personally, he is still a dummy either way, but that is not important right now.

Palestine and Israel, I do not know why I feel so compelled to continue thinking of these two players in the Middle East, but given that the current flavour of the decade seems to be Middle East conflict, it is pretty hard to just ignore them.

Israel has been successful in giving the Palestinians an identity, I mean what better way to build a nation than external conflict that threatens it's people? This may seem harsh, but conflict is an essential part of nation building and the Middle East is full of it. The Palestinians have returned the favor to Israel and allowed them to also further unify their own people, even though the international community seems to be favoring the Palestinian position right now. In the most crude way possible, you could say we have a continued conflict between Arab rejects( Palestinians) and persecuted rejects (Israeli's). Get the record straight now, by using this comparison, I do not mean any disrespect to either people. If I detested either, I wouldn't be spending time thinking about their conflict or writing this entry at...3:08AM.

The Palestinian people need an icon, a saviour of sorts that does not choose to grab a rocket everytime he/she gets a temper flare. Israel likewise needs an individual that can look at the Palestinians and see hope of a future friendship and overall prosperity for both. The problem however and utter travesty is that these icons most likely exist, but are currently being muted by the radicals on both sides, who have essentially hijacked the peace process.

Ideally, this individual would be of Palestinian and Israeli blood, one who could capture the moderates from both sides and get a true peace process going. The stunt pulled at the United Nations recently is only going to activate something in Peace Studies we call: Fight, Flight or Flee.

We know Israel cannot flee, since they are living on land that cannot be moved. We also know that Israel will leave all out conflict to a last resort, given the international heat put on them and the continued threats coming from Iran. In the absence of the other two choices, we are left with an Israel who is in "posture mode". This means Israel is going to flex it's muscle and show off in some way in order to calm it's attacker down and make a statement. This all makes sense, because we are currently hearing from the media that the Israeli government plans to expand it's controversial settlement plan.

Let us go back to the idea of an Israeli/Palestinian icon. Someone who will choose nonviolence and discussion in order to make a statement that will inspire. Someone so nonviolent, that they will be considered a radical in the eyes of the actual radicals, who are still holding on to their rockets. This individual would encompass traits found in both Gandhi and Martin Luther King. They will organize events among Israelis and Palestinians that will most likely erupt in controversy and lead to some severe beatings, but given all of this anger and hatred, this icon will not use violence.

As time passes, the moderates who follow this icon will eventually become influential themselves, so much so that others will be forced to listen and thus begin a true process of change. This change again will not come easy, but will be necessary in finding the common ground (and there is much) that both the Israeli's and Palestinians share.

This will be the path to success that both parties have fought so hard now to achieve. I understand why the United Nations vote would seem important, but it will do nothing but further divide two people who should be close. Granted, it is not easy befriending someone who denies the Holocaust and utters death threats to you, but the idiots who post online from the comfort of their computer can be quelled with a little bit of education and inspiration. You are not going to stop hatred if you feed it with more hatred, Martin Luther King said famously that: "Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that, hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that."

This is what Palestine and Israel need to confront and admit, that they both share a bond, a love, that this future icon will show them.

What we have here is simply two outcasts spending all of this time finding reasons to deny the other or explain why they are different, when in reality, looking in a mirror shows that they share much more than they claim to deny.

Until Next Time!

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Rob Ford Is Not Out...Only You Can Guarantee That!


People of the blogosphere and the vast and complicated landscape known as politics!


Simply because Mayor Rob Ford is not guaranteed out of the top spot in Toronto municipal politics any time soon, the judge may have given his verdict, but Ford still has a wide array of legal and political avenues that can bring him back into power.

Although many of you probably already know this, it is very important to outline that Ford can go ahead and protest the verdict by appealing the judges decision.

Next, if that does not work, Ford can run in a bi-election, if one is chosen to find a proper candidate to replace him.

Finally, if all else fails, Ford has the option of running once again in the 2014 election and will essentially be given a clean slate if he somehow comes to power.

This is why it is important for the people of Toronto and the rest of Canada to listen in to my advice, because it is not only simple, it is also super effective at removing what many call a "big fat slob" of a political joke.

When the election comes around, be it a bi-election or full blown municipal one, you need to get out there and simply...VOTE!

If the people really want Mayor Ford out of office for good, they need to send him a clear message and gather, organize and actually follow through with their words. Voting is the most effective way to keep Ford out of office and hopefully find a more suitable and honest replacement.

It is crucial that you vote even more so, because Mayor Ford has a fairly dedicated following, who will organize in numbers and vote if it is required.

Tell me what you think about this news and my proposed solution. How did you react when you heard the news about Mayor Rob Ford? Do you live or work in Toronto and how has he affected your daily life, if he has at all, since becoming mayor? 

I have to say, I was very shocked when I heard the news that the verdict had passed and Ford was out of office. I mean, of all the stupidity and overall rude behaviour he has shown the people of Toronto, I never would have guessed that a charitable donation on behalf of inner city children who play football, would be the final nail in his political coffin.

Just goes to show you that the world is one very random and exciting place, especially in the political sphere!

Until Next Time!

Friday, 16 November 2012

You/I Say Israel, I/You Say Palestine...

Nothing like a Friday night to show off an example of the power of politics! If you haven't already heard about the renewed fighting in Gaza between the Palestinians and Israeli's than you should really consider buying a TV.

Although, I wouldn't hold it against you if you did hear about the fighting and just continue on with your daily routine protected in a shroud of indifference. Let's face it, Israel and Palestine are a great example of the wrong way to handle a dispute, but unfortunately mistakes are often made in our world.

It sickens me that fighting has to continue between these two people, who if anything, share more of a bond in the idea of a peace between them than they do in their current dispute. I would dive into the reasons why this fighting has continued, but the point form version would require more space than this blogging website could provide in bandwidth.

Essentially, we are witnessing an action in the political community and realm that best represents kindergarten sandbox politics.

You took my toy.

I push you.

You push me back.

I cry, but push you harder.

You cry, push me harder and throw sand in my hair.

The sand feels weird, which makes me cry harder and ultimately kick you.

The toy has been broken into pieces, but both of us have yet to notice due to the continued kicking, pushing and crying that we are engaged in.

What we are left with in this scenario is an escalating situation, where both sides are now deeply disturbed by the actions of the other and are not in the mood to even search for common ground anytime soon, if ever.

The only difference between the scenario above and the current Israeli and Palestinian scuffle is that both sides have military equipment and that original push is a mortar that has killed two people, while my initial push is in the form of military jets bombing city streets. Not to mention the occupation of Gaza, which has created a sense of invasion among Palestinians and has fueled more hatred.

The question I have and I believe most of the world would ask alongside me is...Can you declare yourself a freedom fighter, when you fight on behalf of a people, who occupy land directly beside the very people you are fighting against? Under the traditional definitions of war (Ironic, I know), Palestinians are viewed as violators because they are turning arms against civilians, while Israel is essentially responding with overkill in an attempt to defend itself. This makes Israel seem like the good guy here, but then we have Israel occupying land and not allowing the Palestinians a chance to make peace in order to reclaim it, this mucks up the situation that much more.

In the end, we on the outside look at this situation and shake our heads unfortunately, while muttering..."here we go again". In the name of peace, it may be easier to just declare that Israel and Palestine do not see eye to eye and can agree to disagree, but that usually requires a third party with strength in order to enforce.

To make matters worse...while this is happening, we have our bumfuck of a Prime Minister sitting back and shouting...I support Israel 100% and shut down more embassies in Iran, they must be doing this!

So, thank you Stephen Harper, for further showing that our country is nothing like the peacekeepers we were in the past and also that you have no idea what any form of conflict resolution is...time to hit up some humanities courses at your local university and brush up on something called political science and peace studies.

Until Next Time... Hopefully, before then, both Israel and Palestine are on the road to some form of peace.

Monday, 5 November 2012

To My American Friends: A Day Before The Election, What Is Up?

To all of my American friends (All 3 of you), how have you been? I know it's been a tough past four (4) years, well...let's be realistic, the past twelve (12) years have been pretty tough. That being said though, let us all not forget that as tough as it has been, it could have been a lot tougher, so it is always important to look at the bright side of things. 

It is often recommended that a person be given the chance to get a second opinion regarding important changes in their life. In the case of the election, I want to give you that "second opinion" regarding who you should choose tomorrow.

Coming from Canada, a country located outside of the United States and located geographically right beside you ...or above you, but not in the mean way above you as to make you feel inferior, we are just more north, which is why we like snow, since it usually snows more up north. However, regarding the snow, this thing called climate change is causing it to become a lot warmer here, so we do not get much of it where I am from. I have lobbied the government, but our current right-wing government seems to not know what global warming is...since they argue it's still damn cold. Anyways, enough of Canada, let's focus back on your country.

From the limited, but informative glimpses I have been given regarding your election, I can see that there is some very severe internal strife occurring between your people and of course like many other things in this world...your all mad at each other because of money. To make you feel better...a lot of people get mad over money, just look at the divorce rates in my country and yours and one can see that money is probably one of the main reasons why they get so nasty. Now...if you vote Mitt in tomorrow as your president, do not expect this to change, well change for the better that is, since his policies will most likely make money much much much more scarce for people like you and I. Mr. Obama says he wants to help your country and I believe him, but money will still be scarce, because he is going to need it to build all of the infrastructure and energy changes to your current system. Sure it will cost a lot, but your air and water will become a lot cleaner and heck ...if things get really drastic overseas, you might just make a lot of money with the jobs his ideas will create. Mitt Romney wants to create jobs to, but he really hasn't said much about how he intends to do it...which makes one believe that his job creation will come at the command of the top rich people of America, which might seem good, but also gives them more power than they deserve in my opinion.

Then comes to the more important topic of Canada, which seems to have been left out of almost all of the debates. What will happen to my beautiful country, if your country decides to adopt fundamentalist right-wing thought that wants to push for energy production and totally disregard global warming all together? Will I ever get to see snow again? Will I ever have a white Christmas? Not with Mitt Romney and to be honest, it does not look to good even with Obama, but a little bad is sometimes much better than the chance of a lot of bad right??

Alright, I know you have heard a lot lately regarding the election and I am sorry that I have written this very long message to you, so I am going to break down some key points I want you to consider when your casting your vote tomorrow.

1. Barack Obama may seem like an outsider who has not done much, but he cares for your country, while Mitt Romney only seems to care about the country(club) and those who can afford to attend it.

2. Lets be realistic...we all love snow and global warming is happening, so come panels and wind turbines for the win! More importantly, living sustainably for the win! Leave all that conflict oil in Saudi Arabia and put money towards your own good causes and out of terrorist tyrants coin purses!!!!

3. Is America really prepared for a Mormon president? I mean you guys JUST elected your first visible minority as president, don't you want to give him a little more time to get passed all of the pressure? No one's first time is easy and it takes time to get better afterwards, which is why you shouldn't just jump the gun and kick the guy out!

4. Obama seems to represent what many republicans would associate as old school moderate to the right thinking, you call him a socialist, but he has done a lot to help big business and if anything is a corporate socialist. Those bailouts didn't keep the poor clinging to tons of cash, but Wall Street still has it's bonuses right?

5. Mitt Romney seems to have trouble getting his facts and numbers correct. Yes, he alienated 47% of you, but in his "binders full of women", he will most likely determine that the remaining 53% equals around 100% of the, I mean come on!!!!

6. Women, American women in this case, if your not all over Obama, then I am just shocked! I mean, lately a lot of girls seem to be more independent and less willing to let just any man into their personal circle,it usually takes a few dates before your comfortable inviting him for a coffee, so why the hell would you vote for a guy who wants to govern your vagina and not even pay for dinner on the first date, second or ever!?!?!?!?!

So remember my American friends, use your head tomorrow and try and find that hope still urging in your heart. I know a lot of things might distract you and honey boo boo might be on, but I know you can muster up enough strength to overcome the smoke and mirrors that have been this election. Good luck and know that as a Canadian from Canada (Right above you geographically) we will stand by you as an ally, but I swear...if you guys vote Romney in, I am going to rip you a new one!

Until Next time...

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Social Boxes...Political Boxes...They All Look Just the Same...


Here at the Political Road Map, I try and incorporate a continual theme that reflects on three fundamental questions: Where did we start? Where are we? Where are we going?

These questions are usually supported further by incorporating examples that show if our government is helping us get to where we are going and more importantly, is the path we are currently on politically, socially and morally, the path we want to be on?

I know...a lot of questions, but being as politics affects everything within our individual life and communal world, we cannot escape asking questions, for if we do we risk losing our way.

I recently stumbled upon Walk Off The Earth's (W.O.T.E.) cover of a satirical song that was originally written by Malvina Reynolds in 1962. The significance and meaning of the song seem almost obvious, however if your confused, continue reading or search the song on Wikipedia.

I found it interesting that at the time of this songs creation, America and Canada respectively were going through an intense era of urbanization. People were moving in droves from the country to the city and as city space began filling up, suburbs became the new norm. At the time, many homes were built quickly, cheaply and in a cookie cutter fashion in order to compete with the vast demand from the "Nuclear Family." Time's have changed, however some things still remain the same. Although fashions have turned away from solid coloured homes, people are still immensely pressured to conform on a daily basis. 

I especially enjoy how the song utilizes the word "Ticky-Tacky" in order to explain how cheaply made the homes were. The word became trendy in 1962 and I believe should become trendy in today's society as well. Why you might ask? We are currently experiencing another era of urbanization on the planet, except this time, the urbanization is occurring across continents. With the wonderful tool called the internet, people are now able to catch a glimpse of what occurs across the world with ease and as a result we are beginning to witness global Americanization. Well, I shouldn't really use Americanization, what we are really seeing is global capitalization if anything. Why capitalization? Capitalism has become so powerful a system within society, that some genius was able to convince the Chinese to adopt many of it's characteristics within an existing Communist system that was supposed to be the complete opposite of it.

Now, we are witnessing a vast urbanization of both China and Asia in general, all at the expense of the truth. People are now being convinced that conforming to this system is in their best interest and as a result cookie-cutter-ism has re-surged.

I cannot say with certainty that this is an entirely bad thing, simply because although many people are conforming to a strict state of politics and overall living, there are many beneficial consequences that have also arisen. For example, China can be proud to know that it has done what no other country in the world has done before, which is raise millions of people from zero income to a semi-middle class status. Many people acknowledge this benefit from China and think doing business with them is an amazing idea as income and prosperity is available. However, if your in China, you won't see "little boxes" made from different colours anywhere like you did here in Canada and America around the 1960's.

No, what you will see is a bunch of "government issued boxes" that are dressed in one colour, with people walking around dressed in one colour, speaking just the same and supposedly thinking all the same. China has taken what many American's were proud to call their own and incorporated it with the most destructive characteristics of Communism in order to become the most efficient country in the world, which has led many people to believe that they are.

I for one still stand on my belief that the current Chinese system is going to fail within this decade, simply because it restricts the most crucial element to any prosperous society...freedom. I would imagine that Malvina Reynolds would look at what American has become today and how it has inspired other countries to rise up in a more extreme way, only to look at her song as a sign of good times passed.

We need to continue asking ourselves where we are going in our life. More importantly, we need to ask our government where it intends to direct our country. There is still time to correct our mistakes and ensure that our future generations can rely on knowing that we have left them something stable and optimistic.

Looking at the state of today's economic world, can a democracy remain sustainable, when Capitalism is pushed to the extreme? Can our political system remain true, when money is given the most leverage?

Looking at modern America and Canada, I unfortunately cannot say this is the case. We are diminishing the very system we held our heads high for and although we know something is wrong, it seems people feel helpless to do anything. Some thing's do not change over the years and Malvina was right to create a satire regarding conformity, because today the flavour of conformity seems to be assuming the position of victim. It seems like no one wants to work for their success anymore or do the right thing. We just blame someone for our problems and here in Canada take it out of the government. As a result, we have spawned a generation of politicians who no longer look like leaders, but crooks. We have also spawned a generation of  people that disregard others in order for a quick buck.

Next time you buy something made in China, I want you to say that it is made of "Ticky-Tacky", because it most likely was. China builds cheap in order to optimize profits, it restrains it's people as it is currently creating it's own version of the 1%. However, as much as we can point the finger at China, we must also blame ourselves, because they saw someone else do it first before they adopted it themselves.

The 60's were full of problems, but one thing can be said about this time period that cannot be said now...although there existed a 1%, people did not mind, they embraced them and aspired to be them, because the 1% was not afraid of associating itself with the 99%, they even worked hard to watch out for them and naturally both parties were able to sustain each other. Today is a different story, but I do not need to explain in any more to your local news and you'll see why.

Until Next Time...

Monday, 22 October 2012

Thank You Mr. Harper, But No Thank You

Apparently, Either Stephen Harper or his staff take the time to read this blog and have apparently decided to take from it ideas to contribute towards their policy making.

For this Mr. Harper, I thank you, but I also ask that you also take this blog seriously. I understand it does not possess the flashy photos and gadgets that other established political outlets may currently have, but that should not take away from the legitimacy and importance of the words displayed here.

I mention this in tonight's entry, because of the latest buzz heard across the country regarding the Chinese bid to take accrue some land within the tar/oil sands. I found it very interesting that the government literally took my blog entry entitled: "Sell Alberta to the Chinese", quite literally.

Now...Mr. Harper, I understand you may have taken from my entry that it was ok to allow Alberta to fall into the hands of the Chinese and their large demand for oil, but please please please step back and take a big look at what this proposed deal does to not only the future of our country, but also the legitimacy of your government.

Why is that we shun countries on the international scene because of their human rights records and close our embassies in their respective country, but open our arms and our country to the Chinese, who possess no better of a human rights record themselves?

More importantly, when many Canadians wish to see more refinements of the tar sands within Canada, we choose to further export this non-renewable resource abroad and then spend the profits as soon as possible. This not only contributes to the "Dutch Disease" we currently are plagued from, but also guarantees that future generations will not benefit from the natural resources we currently possess. What has our government done in the area of renewable resources such as solar or wind? Has their been any major contribution to these areas or thought of contributing towards other renewable projects such as wave energy or geothermal?

With regards to your party Mr. Harper, you shun your enemies for their political and social backwardness and then stick your foot in your mouth in order to appease those who you think are your friends, only to accept short term profits and long term regrets. How is it that in a Capitalist system, Canada cannot nationalize it's own oil production, but we can easily sell the rights to another country that is more than happy to nationalize it themselves??????

Do yourself and Canada a huge favor Mr. Harper and deny the $15 Billion Nexen oil takeover by the Chinese. I understand that it does take a very long time to count to 15 Billion, but understand that this money is a drop in the bucket compared to the national benefits our country and people will accumulate in time over the resources extracted by this company, while in Canadian hands. A fun fact for you and those reading this is that it would take an individual counting to a 15 billion around 475.50 years to complete it, granted they took one second per number.

So, in closing, please Mr. Harper, continue to read this blog and accept my gratitude for the time you have taken to click on my links and digest my words. I hope you make the best decision possible for Canada and think about the Canadians who live here, before appeasing the market urges your current agenda gives you. Put the forbidden fruit of China down and look toward the future as opposed to the immediate present, we have a lot more to lose from this deal than just security over our own power and resources, but more important our overall sovereignty.

Keep Alberta in Canadian hands and learn how to figure out when someone is making a joke at your expense already!!!!

Saturday, 6 October 2012

My Dinner with Joseph Kony 2012

In the above link I present to you a movie that over one hundred million people have viewed over the past six months. The YouTube video created by Invisible Children involving Joseph Kony and the atrocities he has committed inspired average people to utilize the internet and become aware of an ongoing problem occurring a world away.

Often times in modern society, complex political issues have to be simplified in order for the average individual to catch on. Understandably, not everyone has the time in their busy life to research and stay committed to a certain cause, unfortunately this is the main reason our society appears to have become lax with regards to the political system and important events going on, but hope is not lost. 
I was watching the news the other night and the main topics being displayed were of radical Islamic groups torching embassies and continued conflict within Syria. Aside from the average local topics that continue to find their way on my daily news channel, I failed to see anything regarding Kony 2012 or even the general area in Africa involved in this complex and unfortunate conflict. The areas I am talking about are the Republic of Congo, Uganda and a place called the Central African Republic. Kony and his members are constantly on the move and because they utilize guerrilla tactics, it is almost impossible to pinpoint a location where  the group is at any given moment. This has made it very difficult for government agencies to find Kony and as a result he continues his rampage.

This was not good enough for me and frankly I have had enough of it. I was inspired by the Kony video, not because I found it as something new and cool, but rather because I was witnessing an important event, that I myself had once studied, being exposed to the spotlight and given the attention it deserved. Something went wrong though, although some form of action was initiated, it feels as if everyone has forgotten about Kony 2012 and thus continue on as if the video was some sort of publicity stunt. I admit that I was skeptical about Invisible Children and the way they handled their donations, but I had to find out more information and as a result I did the unthinkable, the most unsafe thing a person could probably do by beginning my search for Kony. 
I found Joseph Kony and as it turns out, he is still on the run and does have access to the international scene as his refuge. You see, Joseph Kony like many other criminals does not have to play by the rules that you and I do. Joseph Kony was in Canada and as I was searching for him, was able to make contact with him and conduct a small interview granted certain conditions were met. I was not able to take photos, video or record any sounds from the interview. I was restricted to writing down both my questions and the answers I received with a pencil on paper and was there at my own risk. What I eventually derived from this meeting moved me and I believe will ultimately move you as well, which is why I felt it necessary to devote both time and space to this posting. Joseph Kony like other mass murderers in history such as Adolf Hitler is ultimately a human being and has a reason for his actions. 
What I have committed put my life at severe risk, but I could not pass up the chance to witness the side of someone as infamous as Kony. The only comparable encounter to this would have to be the chance to speak with Hitler himself and just ask him why...why commit such hatred in order to achieve something or think that your improving something? 

The following dialogue will be organized by my questions answered by Joseph Kony. My name will show up as Anthony and Joseph Kony will be represented simply by Kony.

 Both myself and Kony sat at a table in a basement apartment, the location was set within a public housing complex oddly enough and Kony was wearing heavy clothing coupled with an altered hair style and deep greyish facial hair. His appearance was greatly modified, but the individual I was looking directly at was Joseph Kony, one look into his eyes and one could see the various eyes that appear in the limited images available to the public pertaining to Kony. An aid of his sat between Kony and I as he properly interpreted the questions and responses being given. Kony's South African passport read Maurius Battinga, an international trader working both within South Africa and Canada. This information was obviously fabricated, but it allowed Kony to travel freely without question as his information checked out and as far as any of us are concerned...he is still fighting in Uganda. 

Anthony: Welcome, I thank you for the opportunity to sit down with you and answer these questions, do you have any questions for me before we begin? 

Kony: Welcome, I have only one question for you, on behalf of our lord and the spirits with us now, do you swear that you are who you say? Why did you want to find me?

Anthony: I am who I originally told you I was, my purpose here today is to get your side of the argument, to attempt to answer a question many people have about you. To begin, how do you feel about the Kony 2012 video and the reaction that has been witnessed in western countries? Have you seen the video?

Kony:  I have seen the video posted by the Americans, it appears everyone has seen my video and my face. They make me out to be a devil, but they do not understand that I fight on behalf of God, I fight in defense of the Ten Commandments and those who follow them. I am a prophet to my followers, a father to them and I am a devil to my enemies. The video has given my enemies the evidence they need to know that I am their devil and I will overcome their tyranny on my people (The Acholi). 

Anthony: Why did you begin the fight? What motivated you to begin The United Holy Salvation Group, which later became the Lord's Resistance Army?

Kony: Why does a shepherd carry a staff as he guides his flock. Our lord savior was our shepherd, he no longer is here, but I have been chosen to continue to guide, to continue to carry the staff of Jesus against the unpure. My group became the staff that defended my people from the tyranny of the Ugandan government and he who leads them. I fight with the spirits that give me the power to succeed. With the help of the spirits, against the unpure, I am invincible.

Anthony: You continue to make reference to the spirits and the Ten Commandments, why are these significant and why do you believe you were chosen?

Kony: I have told you before, I am the prophet of the Ten Commandments, the spirits of the world guide me and make me invincible and have helped me amass my forces and become a champion among my people. 

Anthony: If the spirits make you invincible, why do you run? Why do you flee from your opponents?

Kony: You are a funny man, you think I am easily fooled? I do not run! I am guided by the spirits, they tell me to move away from certain places and I do. The spirits give me power and when they leave me, I am forced to follow.

Anthony: How do you feel about Invisible Children and the campaign they presented to my people? Do they bring you any concern? 

Kony: I do not fear anything, your people have seen my face and know my power. You think you have stopped me, but I know your people, I know your country. Here, you see something for a day and believe you have changed the world, that you know the entire world, when you know nothing and have changed nothing. The world knows your people, but you do not know them and because of this, I am able to continue on without worry. Here, your people see something shiny and they follow it to the end, when at the end of the day, they foolishly support a false idol, using them for their money. I am the true leader of my people, a true idol and my fight against the unpure continues. 

Anthony: I have an important question for you and I would like you to answer without offense. Why children? Why do you use children as your soldiers?

Kony: We are all children of the lord, I simply save these children from the unpure people who teach them to live a life of false idols and immorality. They are my children and follow in the practice of my teachings. I teach them, feed them and train them to be followers of the commandments and because of this they live a good life, a life of devotion to good. At first, many of my followers were not children, but young men who wanted to fight the tyranny our government rained upon us. As time went on, my men died and our power was weakened. To many youth were corrupted by the propaganda against us and the Ugandan army also began using children among their ranks. I began using children in my ranks as soon as the LRA began, because it allowed us to become stronger and more committed and our purity increased.

Anthony: Interesting, but do you not believe that children should be left to study, because they are not old enough to understand the issues you face? Children need their families and their community, how can they get this under your command and fighting? 

Kony: Do not look down upon my tactics, you do not understand what we face in this conflict. There are no children in Uganda when the flame of war is upon us. These children fight for their families, they fight for their beliefs and live a life of purity with my forces. I bless them and through them we will change the face of Uganda and cleanse it. I teach my children, compared to how you people in America treat your children, I do not consider my actions bad. Your children become bloated, hypnotized by false idols that use them for money and power. In the end, your children are led astray, while others gain power, I want to empower the right of the commandments, the ultimate authority in our world, the words of God himself. I provide to my followers the moral and physical satisfaction they need to become strong, even invincible. 

Anthony: What will you do now that the Invisible Children's campaign will continue? Are you still going to continue fighting the government? 

Kony: I have said enough, you do not understand how difficult this battle is and will never understand it. I have fought my entire life and am a legend in Uganda. I will continue my fight until the purity of my people is maintained and the tyranny of the the unclean is destroyed. 

During the interview, Kony and I both shared a few pieces of bread. We talked and tension began to rise in the room. After asking Kony what was next, he became frustrated and I became a target. Someone was standing behind me and in a moments notice placed a knife at my neck. Kony also pulled out a knife and held it toward me. It was at this point that I felt a fear cross my body as I stared into his eyes and could only feel the sorrow that many young children have faced when placed in this exact position. How could a child cope, when a grown man could feel fear at Kony's mercy. Kony began to shake and his eyes wander...he was channeling the very spirits that became his most common answer throughout the interview. After a moment of trance that seemed like a lifetime of fear for myself, Kony looked into my eyes as if to channel my soul. 

Kony: The spirits have granted you freedom, you are blessed and will live. Go and tell your followers what I have said to you.

I left this meeting with a new sense of meaning, knowing that my life was threatened by dangerous men, but also refreshed by the answers I received. It is common knowledge that Joseph Kony is a dangerous man, he is not the first and will most likely not be the last. What is more important is to show how easily one's faith can entrap him and create the necessary motivation to commit atrocities. Kony does not believe he is a bad man, because his mission is a holy one in his eyes. His followers likewise support this vision and allow him to empower his men and even his own arrogance to fight on. Kony lives and breathes for the Ten Commandments, but it obvious that the commandments he speaks of are nothing more than a title for a political ideology that he wants to instill.
It is comforting to know that Uganda is currently not as damaged as it once was before. The civil war has take a turn towards the illusion of peace through cease fire or lack of conflict, but Kony is still a threat. Unfortunately, Kony 2012 has not made Uganda any better, but it has shown us something important regarding our own culture. We forget easily and are guided by our media heavily. I bet you forgot about Kony recently yourself and odds are you were more interested in the life of a celebrity than if Kony was caught or not. 
It is my hope that by reading this entry, you see the bias that we currently live in. We have stereotyped groups in our media and follow them on a priority listing that is anything but natural. 
Could it be that Kony is a terrorist classified as Catholic that we rarely see his image anymore? Can we call him a terrorist? We see certain religions targetted in the media as terrorists, but when a group of primarily white capitalists tell us someone is bad, we follow it for a week like a new revolution is upon us, only to forget about it completely a month later.
What does that say about Canadians and Americans as a people? Is something wrong? 
I would appreciate your comments and your discussion and as always ask that you keep it civil. 
Until next time...

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Canada...The Bank Country?

I happen to just get the blogger app for my android, when I noticed that the first thing you get when you search Canada in the app store is a list of banking apps.

Is that all our country is good for?????

Get out there app developers and incorporate Canada some more into your apps!

How about a Canadian politics app with some gaming elements to it? 

Until next time...

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Why the Republicans Should Take Notes from Quebec

Mitt Romney and his running mate Paul Ryan have been traveling America promising a more appropriate recovery and an overall better America, if they are chosen in the upcoming election as president. Romney's platform has been founded upon strong American values and more importantly the economy, with the promise that a country led by Mitt Romney and his Republicans is one that will prosper from increased employment and smaller government. In fact, Romney has focused so much on a smaller government, that he has not only worked hard to have the tea party praise him as a God, but at the same time has done everything in his power to dismember anything created or achieved under Obama.

Bashing your opponent is nothing new in the political sphere, but what I find funny about Romney's campaign is that he continuously praises himself for being immune to criticism from his opponents, when all he really does is criticize two main components of Obama: Healthcare and the Economy. In 2008, Obama promised America change they could believe in and through this change hope that the future would look more positive for the average American. He gave hope to those who before felt hope did not exist for them. Romney is attempting to spread hope in this upcoming election as well, except the hope he seems bent on committing to is one that guarantees a government who will lead by dismantling as opposed to building a new America.

One can only wonder how the upcoming election will turn out, when you have an economy that has improved, but is very much still in recession territory? Looking back at the federal election outcome in Quebec, Romney should be taking some major notes if he wants to oust an incumbent that has a strong following. What I am referring to is the "Orange Wave" that swept through Quebec in the last federal election and that frankly shocked much of Canada. This event not only changed Canadian history, but also reinforced the notion that the people have power when they are motivated to use it.

When looking at the American situation, I see many similarities with the Tea Party/Republican Party and the people of Quebec. They are sick and tired of the conventional handling of politics in their country and they want to push for change. However, they see the options bleak, which opens up hope for the new guys that through sheer dissatisfaction with their government, they will change their voting trends.

Mitt Romney has both the money and the radical following to give him an easy win. If for example, many Americans feel that Obama has not lived up to his initial expectations, they might not vote or in a worst case scenario might choose Republican. Usually a low voter turn out helps the incumbent, however if you happen to have a radical following that are committed through ideology rather than interest, this can give you an ace up your sleeve in the political sphere.

Will the people of the United States give Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan power due to the negativity felt because of a poor economy and what appears to be political ineffectiveness?

One cannot deny that the past four years have not been easy for president Obama. He came into power in the middle of a financial crisis and two major wars occurring at the same time. Not to mention that throughout the entire process of creating the change that was initially promised, Obama has seen nothing but grief from his political opponents that have usually led to a political stalemate and utterly no progress. This only hurts the President as it gives Romney the argument that Obama has essentially done nothing, when in reality the opposite is true.

However, when we look at the perspective of the average voter, a lot of this information is not available for you or I to gather. Lets be honest, the American media is overall a fear mongering machine and information or in correction valid information is often in absence. When the average voter cannot find a job or is living paycheck to paycheck can the original dream of hope stay alive? Can one overcome the fear of the future in order to stay the course and if necessary sacrifice a little more before salvation arrives?

I personally do not see Mitt Romney winning the election, I think that he caters simply to white America and has not standing among working class individuals. Yes, he is able to represent the portion of America that creates a lot of employment, but I do not really see this transpiring into anything like we saw in Quebec. Obama still instills the fire created by his overall platform of hope and equal representation and because of his I believe he will maintain his presidency for another four years.

Today, the people of Quebec went to the polls again and what we have witnessed is another example of the people exercising their political might. Many young voters have rebelled against the government, because they feel they have been betrayed due to corruption, favoritism and overall political ineffectiveness and as a result we now have a minority government being formed under the leadership of the Parti Quebecois.

What I hope to reinforce by today's entry is that the political process in a Democratic nature is one of beauty. Michael Moore said something profound lately in an interview that went: " American politics is greatly influenced by money and Mitt Romney has a lot of it, however what must kill the rich is that although they surpass everyone with the money they have, come election time they have one vote like the rest of us and that must kill him." This is the exact reason why we as a people must continue to reinforce our political system and more importantly participate in it. Canada will be greatly affected if Mitt Romney gains enough to win this election and as a result we are forced to weigh in as well.

How do you feel about the upcoming election? I am interested in reading what you feel about this topic and any input you wish to add to the discussion.

Until Next Time.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Why the Feminist Movement Needs Strong and Independent Men Now, More than it Never Did Before

I start off today's entry with various questions revolving around the feminist movement and how it compares today from when it first took off.

Can we as a society truly say that women are better off than they were before? Well, I should rephrase that question and ask more directly...has the feminist movement initiated it's own destruction over the past few decades and if so, is it truly weakening or just transitioning into something else?

*Disclaimer* I ask these questions not to incite any kind of bias or prejudice against women, but to rather open up a discussion on the current state of both men and women and their involvement in today's workforce, home and government. If you believe what I am saying is rude or just wrong, you are entitled to your opinion, but I ask that you read the following post with an open and free mind. 

I have recently witnessed various examples throughout my own journey's that show the repercussions of a society focusing to much on being politically correct. The most common example I can list is the affect on men that this correctness has. It seems today that being a stereotypical man or exhibiting characteristics found in this stereotype is something rather illegal or a social faux pas. No where is this more true than in the workplace. Have you ever felt that having a crush on a fellow female co-worker is something impossible due to stricter rules governing harassment? Do not get me wrong, it is important to have rules and laws that protect women from unwanted relationships and more importantly violence, but it seems that many of these rules have been distorted greatly over the past few decades. Lets look at an example governing the work place and a relationship. Being a man has become quite a tricky thing now a days. If you are not accepted by a female your interested in due to whatever reason, you run the risk of being reported and potentially losing your job or being disciplined. Yes, there are situations where the man may have taken things to far, but I can also guarantee that there are many more situations where a man has been targeted because the girl did not feel he was attractive enough or her type and reacted by being skiddish and thinking the worse of a situation that probably was harmless.

Personally, I feel as if it has become a crime to even tell someone from the opposite sex that they are beautiful or to ask them to go out with me. I know this may sound silly, but I often wonder if my invitation will lead me to a situation involving my discipline and or a record for supposedly sexually harassing someone due to a coffee invitation. This not only makes it more difficult for men to socially interact with the opposite sex in my opinion, but also greatly increases an individuals personal frustation and anxiety. Why is this important to mention and how is it harmful to women? Look around our society, we move at the speed of light in order to attain success within our own lives, when at the very same moment we lack the capacity to actually enjoy the very lives we work hard to create. We as a people have become so isolated, so individual, that we barely make contact with other human beings anymore unless it has been scheduled in advance and is sterile. So bad has this become, that in extreme cases, we arm ourselves with weapons and take out innocent lives in order to compensate for a sterile social life that drove us to madness. I am actually not surprised that more people do not take out their social frustration via violence against women or the general public and to be honest, we are very lucky that this does not happen on a larger scale.

To quote Karl Marx: "The seeds of destruction for a system, often lie within that same system."

Can the feminist movement honestly validate that today's common woman is liberated from the oppression they once lived under? Is the quality of life for a woman and more importantly her liberty any greater today than ever before? As much as I want to say that these questions are pretty self evident, I feel as if lately women are not only more strained and oppressed, but also that men have equally become more obedient and pacified, which has resulted in drastic changes not only within our society at whole, but more importantly within our political leadership. All of this trickles down and inevitably can be used to explain why today we as a country seem to lack the political representation that once enabled us to form together as one and do the impossible. Instead, we are left with a society, where a woman must still strain herself in order to try and have a successful work life and a family and where a man has been told that his natural instincts are wrong and that he is a beast if he attempts to take charge. Combined, this has not only further oppressed a woman, but also made her life more difficult in the sense that she must now be the bridge that keeps the family unit in one piece, while also be the bread-winner. 

This would also explain, why we now have a generation of men whom feel more free and alive while playing war games on X-Box Live than taking charge and going into their community and actually doing something to cause change. Mind you, there are still people who do take charge and both men and women today contribute greatly to the betterment of our society, however it seems like today we see less and less of this as men seem to have become impartial and obedient, while women seem so over worked and stressed that they no longer know what they want. 

Do you believe that some elements of the nuclear family were totally wrong? Can a woman not govern the household and raise a child with the help of a man to provide her with the basic needs she requires? Is it chauvinistic for a man to want to be the bread-winner of a family and provide a good life for his mate? Can men still live a stereotypical life, while still allowing women their own personal freedom? 

I believe that women would live a lot better if we still had a social push that told men to be strong and push forward. Yes, it is ok for men to cry and even more so it is ok for a man to show emotion, especially around his significant other, but I do not believe it is right for a movement that has gained so much authority within our society to tell the opposite sex that they cannot want to achieve or be confident, because it puts women down. One might even argue that today's divorce rates could be a significant by-product of the success the feminist movement has had within society. Women do not need a man to live their life, but what many people do not understand is that children need parents in order to continue their lives and grow up to be strong minded and successful adults. How can we develop the future today, when our family unit consists of parents whom either divorce because they cannot find common ground or whom instill within their children that they must limit themselves in order to not offend someone else. Can we not all work hard and be confident in ourselves and as a people grow together regardless of our sexual orientation, sex or race?   

 While many may argue the opposite, I believe this issue is extremely relevant to the political atmosphere we currently live in. As a society, we need people to be active and inquire about their leadership and the direction of their community. We need to ask questions and challenge authority when required, but cannot succeed in doing this, when we are taught to be submissive in order to achieve political correctness. 

The feminist movement has made great strides in representing the rights of women and their overall status as equals within society, but what it has achieved on paper, it has failed in implementation. I believe today's feminist movement is not only non-existent, but of what remains of it, has failed in not only enlightening society to the importance of equality, but also in transcending the "Battle of the Sexes."

The Affect of Feminism:

On Women:

As women now progress through their young lives, they face ever growing pressure from both their peers and society to conform to certain stereotypes and images. What does this mean? Although women have been encouraged to become more independent and liberated from a dependence on a man, they continue to be shaped by an image that is strongly purported by the mass media. In the 1950's a woman was expected to be schooled in the way of the home and directly focus on how to serve her significant other...99% of the time being a male in those times. 

In modern times however, young girls are statistically more likely to be obedient within the schooling system and thus excel in their studies, which might explain why more women go to university than men. This is the exact point where feminism is failing women, because as a thought paradigm it cannot keep up with Capitalism. On paper, women have gained "equality" within society, but in reality this is not realistic. Women have become more educated, however this does not compute into more success within the workforce, when men are still paid higher wages for the same work. Not to mention, a family now becomes almost like a burden, when economic times are rough and women are forced to take up the slack within the home and the workforce. Have you ever noticed that many different institutions hire women in droves to handle their affairs? I do not want to seem sexist, but I do not believe this is done in an attempt to reflect the education these women have worked hard to achieve, but mainly to exploit them due to the fact above regarding pay. Does it not seem more feasible to hire a workforce of women, when statistically they are more likely be obedient and work for less pay than their male counterparts? Liberated maybe, but not free is the only phrase that properly explains the woman of 2012 and without further discussion, this isn't going to change for the better. 

On Men:

 In the eyes of society and legally, men and women are equals and rightly so. Women should be allowed to walk down the street without fear of assault from a male predator and men should be able to find a woman who does not rely on him for everything in life. However, this equality becomes disastrous when we look at men and women through the eyes of biology. As many different systems within society have been lobbied by the feminist movement, changes have been implemented to make everything more balanced in order to reflect the equality shared between men and women. By doing this however, we have subjugated men and set them up for failure. Before I mentioned how statistically young girls are able to focus more in class and remain still/obedient for their teacher. Well, statistically young boys are the complete opposite. They learn with their hands and love to move around, however now they are being told they are wrong and forced into submission in order to conform to the standards of the class that naturally favor young girls in an attempt to create a balanced and equal environment. 

This is not only detrimental to the cause of feminism, but also to society as a whole. We have generations of men, who have been educated in a paradigm that focuses on making them submissive, not active in their learning and development. This greatly explains why we not have grown men who choose to play 12 hours a day in a fantasy online game as opposed to helping to raise their family or looking for a likely mate if they are not already taken. We have men who have been told their entire lives that they are bad or lack obedience and then we are surprised when they grow up submissive and lacking any true confidence in order to aid them in their adult life. Couple in the fact that many young boys are being raised by single mothers and this problem becomes even more severe as men lack the proper guidance from their fathers that can enable them to become strong, confident and good fathers themselves in the future. This further hurts the political process because we are losing strong able bodied men, who can guide our society to continue doing great things and overcome. We also lose the potential to introduce many intelligent and inspiring young women into politics because they are either to overworked themselves or lose motivation because they may naturally want to start a family of their own. 

The battle of the sexes has been transformed into the strain of the sexes as both men and women now face a society and economic environment that places a lot upon their shoulders. This weight becomes ever more difficult to handle, when the proper social mechanisms one requires are not present due to errors in their own development. This is by all means not the fault of one person or one group, but a systemic grey area that is turning into a pandemic among western society. Canada and the United States more than any other country is facing this problem more, simply because of how integrated our society has become within the Capitalist system.

So, overall I can only leave the initial start of this discussion by stating: Men, it is ok to be strong and confident in yourself and in what you want, but remember that in today's world, we need to promote equality by not only continuing some of the biological stereotypes we have, but also by breaking many of the social ones that restrict us. Men, do not be afraid to make babies and more importantly care for those babies, do not be afraid to change diapers or feed a baby and if your significant other wants to be the bread winner and can financially support your family, do not be afraid to support them in their decision and while doing this live your own life as well! Women, it is ok to let your man do the above and be strong for him, but also importantly allow him to be strong for you, for that is true equality!!!

How do you feel about this? Do you have anything to add or something you disagree with?

Please feel free to comment and as I have stated before...leave a comment after reading this with both an open mind and free one. 

Until Next Time!

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Red Dragon Falling

Has China clipped it's own economic wings?

In previous posts, I have mentioned on more than one occasion how I feel about China and it's current economic platform. Yes, many economists and financial junkies love the Chinese due to their extreme growth and positive future outlooks, but how accurate can anyone be in the current economic environment we live in?

 As consumers continue to gobble up various "Made in China" goods, there seems to be a continued denial or utter ignorance to how these goods are provided to us and the methods used to create them. Continuing on with this, what makes this even more outrageous is that even when you directly and in plain language show people the atrocities committed to manufacture that new designer brand coat or those new shoes, they mostly give you an expression of shock, only to continue on five minutes later as if you had said nothing at all.

It seems almost like poetic justice that the very firms who employ cheap labour and exercise utter disregard for the environment or the people around them, are the very same ones who now risk posting a severe loss in profits. However, I think we all know that this was coming all along and is unfortunately not a surprise for China as a manufacturer and our current system.

What do you expect, when a country manipulates the international financial playing field by not only imposing slave like conditions on their workers/citizens, but also has an utter disrespect for all human rights regardless of what anyone says. China has manipulated and molded it's own currency in order to remain the most competitive and as a result many companies have moved their production lines overseas in order to maintain their competitiveness or increase their profits through sheer greed. One can only wonder what implications a major slow down in the Chinese economy will have on the international system as a whole. Can China struggle to supply its own people with their basic necessities and tackle conditions resembling a recession as well? Are we going to see a major shift in Chinese policy because of this? Probably not, but one thing will remain certain, that workers within China will continue to suffer in order to continue a steady supply of cheaply created goods.

This should be a further wake up call to the world that we need to smarten up. Our own health coupled with the health of our local and international environment, whether it be financial or biological, is important to the continuation of the human race as we know it. However, something has got to give and what appears most likely to change/already be changing is the lifestyle we have come to love so much in our own country. We need to eat less meat, use less gas and plant more trees in an effort to try and reverse the damage we have already committed just by living the capitalist dream. However, it seems almost futile to suggest this as the majority of our own changes will be offset by the increase created by demand both in China and India. This is no surprise and is nothing new, but people in China and India are working slave like conditions to achieve a level of wealth and luxury similar to that enjoyed in the west. The question one must ask in all of this, is whether it is possible or not to grow to fast?

I want to be clear that my post is in no way attempting to bash the Chinese or impose some xenophobic view against the worker's of a rising power. There is no doubt that the very laptop I am currently using has either been assembled in whole or has parts assembled on a Chinese worker's line. I just have to ask how far we as a civilization are willing to go before we do something to reverse the damage that continues on in ignorance?

More importantly, I want to stress how important it is for not only consumers in general, but also recently laid off employees of many factories who lost their contracts to foreign competitors to look at China with sympathy as opposed to anger. The Chinese people are not responsible for the damage that their current system is causing the world and if anything they are the biggest allies the world has to creating strong and lasting change in the near future. Why is this the case? Well, as this emerging Chinese middle class continues to grow, they are going to raise families educated in the system and will start demanding more from their country. This will be the last nail in the coffin that will result in the end of the current Chinese rise. I am so sure of this that I can say with confidence that China as a manufacturing super power will collapse within the decade unless the necessary changes are put in place. As Karl Marx so famously said: "The seeds of destruction for a system often lie within that same system." The truth in this statement runs as deep in China as it did in reference to the Capitalist system, Which Marx was targeting.  

To end this entry, I can only say that the "Red Dragon" is clipping it's own wings and the world is here to witness it. Do not believe the propaganda which refers to America falling, because although America has taken a large economic hit via the rise of China and the increased power of the multinational corporation, America like many other western countries will rise again and stay afloat. And they will do this because they are centered on a system of freedom and truth, granted that truth can be corrupted as is going on now, but what makes the system so beautiful is it's ability to shift and weed out the very contaminants that pose a risk to it.

The next 10 years are going to be very interesting to witness and promise great change...whether we want it or not. Let's just hope we can learn from our mistakes and continue forward as we make new ones for our future children to tackle on our behalf.

Until next time.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

A World United By Language(s)?????

The disappearance of language was a featured article and overall topic in this month's National Geographic. 

The planet is losing a large number of mostly native languages to globalization and the westernizing effects it is having on many parts of the planet.

This got me thinking about the "unifying effect" globalization is supposed to achieve upon it's implementation. More importantly, many questions have begun to spin around in my head regarding the disappearance of certain languages and how it affects our government, our society and the richness of our life. 

I mean, lets be realistic about something, history has shown us that like empires, language has come and gone or changed. A perfect example would be Latin. Used by the known world at it's peak, the Romans built an empire on the back of the Latin language and conquered the world with it. What the sword did not strike, the language covered like a blanket, bringing forth followers toward a sense of enlightenment. 

Nothing has changed since the time of the Roman Empire compared to now, except maybe the accuracy and deadliness of the weapons we use. Our current state of affairs still consists on the presumption that the world needs enlightenment and with that we have an era of great change that our generation will witness whether we like it or not. In today's world you are either speaking English or Mandarin and if these two are not your mother tongue, than it is likely that your working on them.

This shouldn't be a surprise to anyone really and one might question if such a topic really deserves a blog post to discuss it.

So, I guess the question I cannot really answer myself would be: Should we be worried about a world without many languages? Does a singular language bring forth more unity and a sense of peace compared to multiple languages and differences?

I tend to look at globalization with a lot of strife as it seems to benefit the few at the top as opposed to the many that the idea once idealistically promised. However, I do not see harm in the current trends that see our world unify under one or two main languages. History will continue to move forward and with it the winds of change will push us along, so shouldn't we adapt and unite as opposed to fighting what essentially seems like an uphill battle?

As our planet enters the space age, would it not make sense to have a single language that not only identifies us, but also pushes us to not only declare peace, but also work toward a stronger future? In the end, you rarely see English speaking countries that are involved in trade go to war with each other right?

Although this may seem very realist and depressing, I shine some light on the subject as there is still hope in the world. With great organizations like National Geographic and Google, language will be far from lost in the coming future.

I wouldn't be surprised if Google is working on a data storage system right now that will capture every word and every sense of almost every language currently on the brink of extinction....and well, if they aren't already doing not take my idea, I call dibs!!!!

With a rise in education being seen throughout the world and the current age of enlightenment beginning, I forsee a future where our children continue to look at the stars with wonder and curiosity and where no single child walks a path using only one language, but two or three or maybe even four! Technology has made the world a smaller place and with it's continuous revolutions, has broken down many of the barriers that have stopped people from different parts of the world from "mingling."

So, I end this post with more optimism than my words can contain and leave you with the hope, no the guarantee that all is not lost and although our societies are drifting toward singular languages, it does not mean we will lose ourselves in the change, only redefine who we are and what we consider this beautiful planet of ours. Italian will always remain the language of food, French the language of love, Spanish the language of dance and English and Mandarin the languages of business! ;P

Until next time!

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Viva Les Students Des Quebec!

I am going to keep this one simple:

You have heard about those students in Quebec...they have been protesting for about 3 months now over the proposed increase in tuition.

They have a right to protest!

It is true that Alberta helped subsidize tuition costs in 2009, 2010, 2011 and most likely 2012 to. However, that is what being in a country requires, we help out the other part of the country in need and vice versa when required.

With jobs leaving the country and unemployment among youth so high, should students stand by and accept an increase of even a penny, when their wages and futures look so dim? Is schooling truly affordable, when students are forced to go to school via student loans and debt?

Should education be considered an employment opportunity for universities or a basic right in both modern Canada and the world? The directions of today create the future of tomorrow!

We should make it a holiday in this country, that once a year, everyone, no matter where they live, east or west, south or north, rich or poor, should gather and walk the streets united under the Canadian flag and remind the government that it is the people who carry the true power.

So, continue you unruly Quebec students...and the next time the police come out with riot gear screaming...SCREAM LOUDER!

You Can Put Makeup a on Pig....

Sometimes, when you are presented something in life, you miss exactly what that something is and are led to believe it is something entirely different altogether. This tactic is called deceptive presentation and is based on how our brains function and thus how we interpret information. For example, odds are you may not have noticed that you read my blog title incorrectly  and that the "a" and "on" should be reversed.

This kind of trickery is perfectly legal in many cases and is often found all over the place. Television commercials utilize this deception to get you to buy their products, magicians use it to tantalize your senses and finally politicians use it to have power over you. Yes, it is true, as politics is a power game, deception is a tool all to familiar with your average public servant and through this deception we witness events like: George W. Bush Jr. winning for a second term or Prime Minister Stephen Harper gaining a majority as a few examples.

Today's entry will start off by mentioning the name of a remarkable young girl named Victoria Grant. If you have not already heard of Victoria, I suggest you visit this link and find out exactly why this little squirt is both intellectual and brave. Was she coached by her parents into becoming this way? Most likely, but that is what being a good parent requires right?

I was most intrigued by Victoria's heartfelt speech regarding Canada's current banking crisis and throughout the entire ordeal could not help but recognize a familiarity with the information she was giving out. In fact, I knew I had heard this exact speech somewhere else a few nights before when I watched a 2009 documentary named "Oh Canada, our bought and sold land" by Dan Mathews.

What we have here is another example of this deceptive presentation that further plays with our mind. We have a young man on one hand who cannot afford to go to university making a very informative and eye opening documentary, yet he is unable to receive any media attention outside of independent media. Than on the other hand, we have a young girl who most people would assume should be playing with barbies, yet she is giving presentations to business experts on the crisis that is growing within her country. Her video went viral almost immediately and everyone had their ears on her, even though many may not have taken her seriously. Either way, we have two Canadians who have completed an important service for their country.

One has to ask if our country is still on course financially and if Prime Minister Stephen Harper really knows what he is doing. As a university graduate I joke that completing a degree has taught me how to think and ask questions or at the very least think I know what I am talking about.

Throughout the economic recession of 2008 or "RecCon 08" ( Recession Conservative 08) as I now call it, we have witnessed a Conservative government continually assuring the Canadian people that although Canada has entered recession territory, we have weathered better than any other country out there and are a shining example. Yet...the jobs continue to leave the country and people are increasingly stuck with low paying, part time or contract work. Not to mention that it does seem increasingly evident that everything today is trying to get you to either borrow money or open a credit card. Hell, I am an underemployed university graduate and I somehow was pre-approved for a $20,000 Visa, even though my annual income barely touches $15,000 currently!!! You know something is wrong when this happens and cannot be good for the direction of our economy and the overall direction of our country.

This problem is so bad that I should really cut Mr. Harper some slack, because his government is not the only one guilty. Former Prime Minister Paul Martin can also be praised and blamed as well, because although his government fought for banking regulations and against deregulation of the system, he still approved legislation that gave banks the ability to distribute loans via bank notes and collect physical cash as payment. 

So, this entire problem comes back to my original title: You can put makeup a on pig, but it is still going to be a pig. So much so that Mr. Harper, you can add all of the deception and propaganda you want to legitimize the shady actions of our current financial situation, but that does not make it right, nor does it mean we are going to avoid a major financial catastrophe down the road.

What you can do to prevent a financial crisis like that of the United States from happening in Canada?

Lobby your elected officials and ask them why we are not paying off our national debt via the Bank of Canada or the people's bank as it should be referred to? The Bank of Canada was created to provide the government with interest free loans, yet we see a system that spews out promotion for loans and mortgages that are built upon a foundation of compound interest or in a drastic light...modern slavery.

Let's get the Bank of Canada involved and pay this debt off by having the people provide the loans, I do not mind paying myself back in order to keep my country on the right track and allow Canadians to continue living with a high quality of life. Let us be a true example to the world and shine with truth as opposed to the deception we have been duped into believing as truth!

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Can Religion Save Capitalism?

Our modern system of Democracy has been established via a long history of trial and error. Religion like war has been with mankind from before anyone can even remember and for the longest time it has played an important role in the implementation and order of political governance and state power. With time and the eventual enlightenment years, man was able to break free from his dependence on a higher order to govern him and to make a long story very compartmentalized and brief...we have the modern political that does not include God or the church as a fundamental foundation that governs it. Even the Queen and her monarchy are but a simple symbolic gesture in Canadian politics and are more realistically used to sell a lot of commemorative plates rather than implement policy.

The main question that crosses my mind today however is what role the church and more generally religion plays within both the market and Capitalism? I ask this most likely because of the constant mention of the market within our media today and given the impact the recession has had on many people, one cannot escape mention of the word Capitalism or the *free market* in any political conversation or other.

I cannot help but also focus on the big scams that are going on today and that have gone on since 2008. We have a very few doing what they can to gather income and influence over many and as a result of this these individuals also gain extreme power over elected officials and common citizens alike. I understand that corruption and scandal are nothing new within our system and history will show that various examples of this have gone on throughout the ages, but no matter how hard I try to stop thinking about this, I come back to this question: Can we separate church/religion and the market as easily as we can separate church/religion and the state? Further more, have we truly separated the church from the state or have we simply replaced the church with the market, thus choosing one potential evil over another?

As a society progresses forward and becomes more individual, giving the average person more freedom over their actions and beliefs, it seems only natural that church becomes less apart of our lives. Granted, I could be wrong about this, but if the statistics showing a constant decrease in church attendance is any sign, it is safe to say that people are choosing to not go to church or partake in church services as they once did.

Granted also, this information is affected by other factors such as how an individual perceives the church and their devotion to it, also given the fact that the majority of people are working longer and taking their work home with them, it can also be argued that church attendance is being replaced in an effort to finish much needed work as opposed to simple disregard for it.

Breaking down my question further, one can also argue if Capitalism is tied to Christianity as opposed to any other religion. This is a simple generalization based solely on the fact that Capitalism was born out of the west, which has primarily followed Christianity in it's devotion. This is ironic in itself as Jesus Christ appears to be everything opposite what an average Capitalist is. However, it appears that with Christianity we have a strong sense of Capitalism, or is it the other way around? The Americans print "In God We Trust" on their currency, yet their system does not reflect any of the major values associated with religion. I for one do not trust the modern church system. This is mainly because the church like a government is inherently human and as such is open to corruption and greed. Sunday offerings in church can be compared to your monthly usage fees found at your bank. How can so much irony exist within our system and yet still be accepted as ok, I mean even if God does not exist, Jesus is still a socialist revolutionary who stirred up a lot of shit in an effort to not only unite people, but instill values of peace into them and maybe make them a little less barbaric. However, looking at our modern system, you would think Jesus was not different than the tax collectors at the temple that he disliked so much.

I wonder how a CEO of a major company or the corrupt individual in charge of a hedge fund might perceive church attendance and the values that are associated with religion. If we look past the scandals present in the church and the inevitable humanity present in the imperfect church systems found around the world, we are left with a gathering place that not only promotes a sense of community, but also instills upon it's members the values to live a peace loving, God fearing life of good. Did the Bernie Madoff's and corrupt CEO's of the world attend church or some form of religion on a weekly basis like their middle class and lower income counterparts? We often see a boost in church attendance during times of trouble, as people gather a sense of hope and increased faith from their devotion, but does this resonate among those in control of the Capitalist system and the market?

It seems like today people have not only become to distracted with work and the various advances in entertainment provided by technology, but have also forgotten to remember the important values that have resonated throughout our society for millennium. As a result, we see increased focus on the self and further disregard for those around us that could use a helping hand. Today we live as good as kings did before and we have an increase in intelligence, however it seems that people will do whatever they can to penny pinch and screw over their brother or sister in order to feel as if they have come out on top in the end. 

This is where I need your help, could it be that because of a disregard for the important values instilled by religion that we see more corruption and greed within society today? Or is it because the media is able to focus in and gather information about these corruptions that they become more common? Did the rich within society have more respect for their middle and lower income counterparts in times when church attendance was through the roof? It seems that as people turn their back on the church, our Capitalist society continues to disintegrate from within.  

Until next time!