Thursday, February 15, 2007

Kyoto, CN Strike, Attack Ads

So many things are happening.

I've overjoyed at the sudden swing the Conservatives have taken toward environmental concerns. It's not something that they wanted to do, but rather something we forced them to do with strong public opinion. Suddenly, they discover, cutting emissions in half by 2050 doesn't seem to be satisfying enough. Of course, we'll have to continue to keep an eye on them to make sure they follow through. Rest assured that this is not a desirable outcome for the party of the rich, wealthy and oil-invested.

On another note, there is a strike going on of all the CN rail workers. If you were to read only the news, you would think that the cause for this strike is that workers, who earn an "average" (look that word up, you don't actually know what it means) of $75k, want a 4% raise. However, if you look more closely, the 4% is only a response to the management's offer of 3%. The problem? Management's offer also includes clauses which allow them to overwork their employees. Would you want to ride a train operated by a guy who works 12 hours, gets 8 hours off, then is required to work 12 more hours? Not I.

I caught a couple of the Conservative attack ads on television. Mostly they're highlighting how the Liberals never really did anything for the environment. I suppose we're supposed to believe that the Conservatives will.

I don't believe any of them. As a citizen, I believe that I have a duty to avoid believing them, just as I have a duty to keep an eye on them.

They are politicians. They care about looking good, raising funds and getting reelected. They do not care about any of the actual issues in their platforms. If you start your analysis of politics from this angle, it makes much more sense. When did the Conservatives suddenly become environmentalists? When we forced the issue. Politicians will only do what we want if he hammer it down their throats and, even then, they will try to get out of it. They'll make laws with loopholes. They'll underfund programs.

NAFTA is probably the best example. The PCs implied that it meant duty-free cross border shopping, when it really meant forcing Canadian workers to compete with sweatshops in third world countries. The plan went ahead, the corporate field were sown with our money, and our elected officials reaped the rewards when they left office.

That's their plan - sneak in to office with some "platform", rig the financial game for their friends, escape to a life of luxury. The only way to stop them is to pay more attention.

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