Friday, September 25, 2009

The Horrors of Socialism: An Open Letter to Americans

I want to write now directly to the American people. I want to warn our neighbours to the south about the horrors of adopting a Socialist system. I want to tell them about the horrific nature of things they can’t understand. I want them to know the consequences of electing Barack Obama.

First of all, you will be surprised to see how the insidious tendrils of Socialism will penetrate to every facet of life. In Canada, we have Socialized nearly everything in the name of, “quality of life” and “health” and “equality”.

For instance, unlike everywhere in America where people rightfully pay to have their houses doused with water when they catch on fire, the Socialist Fire Department of Canada comes to house and business fires and puts them out. Sometimes they take up to ten minutes to reach the scene and, in a move destructive to the righteous philosophy of capitalism, many of the firefighters are volunteers.

I know. Earth shattering isn’t it? Take a minute to catch your breath before going on.

We don’t have a lot of mercenaries in our country either. The Socialist Police Department collectively (I know, it makes me gag, too) protects everyone, equally, and never charges money to the victims of crime. The only people who pay money are the perpetrators of crimes and that only happens after they go through a trial.

Take a deep breath. I have to explain to you about our Socialist Book Network. We have these buildings scattered throughout our country called “libraries” that are maintained through tax dollars. There you can get books free just by providing identification. You have to return them, though, and there are often “waiting lists” to get some books. You’ll notice when you visit Canada that this has destroyed the private book industry completely.

I’ll let you finish retching, because it gets worse. This is the part that directly affects you, so take a deep, deep breath so you can read it.

Our entire medical and hospital system is Socialized. It’s governed by a ministry with the clever name “Health Canada” so that anyone who is upset about it can be accused of being an unpatriotic traitor. It’s horrific. I’ll give you an example:

Four years ago, my father had a horrible heart problem. He found himself suddenly weak and nearing death. My mother helped him in to their vehicle and whipped him over to the hospital. There a doctor – without having to check with my dad’s insurance company – diagnosed my father with clogged up arteries. The government paid for the entire examination and the clot-busting drugs that were used on him.

The only people who made money off this transaction were the doctors, nurses and receptionists who directly interacted with my father. Don’t you get it? This system is doomed! How can a system of health work if there are no shareholders demanding a profit? How can the efficiency of the system improve if completely unrelated people aren’t demanding more and more money for their invested dollars?

My father was taken by a Socialized Public Ambulance to another hospital where a cardiac surgeon waited. By 6pm on the day of his near-death, he was under the knife for triple bypass surgery. During the surgery, the surgeon discovered that the fourth artery was also nearly clogged and she performed a fourth bypass. She did not stop during the surgery to seek additional approval from anyone. Her expert opinion was enough.

I can only imagine the pasty-white look of horror on your face. She could go and do an extra bypass because she thought it was best for her patient? And no one made money off my father’s illness? No profit, anywhere? How can you Canadians even run an economy like this? And really, waiting six hours for a quadruple bypass? I’m sure the waiting times for a retired teacher in his sixties are so much shorter in your country. I’m embarrassed to even mention that part of it.

And to think, no one even weighed his life. No one looked at his salary or his pension to decide if maybe a retired teacher hadn’t contributed as much to society as, say, a CEO or banking executive had. No one considered that maybe my father wasn’t worth saving. They just fixed him because Socialism says that, “Every Life is of Equal Value.”.

I write this letter not to disparage my own country. We are too far gone down the path of Socialism. There’s no hope for us. But you! You I can save from this horror. Keep the profit motive in your health system. Keep judging people by their salaries. Don’t let Socialism ruin the beautiful, efficient system you have!


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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Autism: Science vs. Ignoramuses

According to the Ottawa Citizen, the H1N1 vaccine has "stirred the debate" over the link between autism and vaccines.


Let's examine this debate. On the one side we have Canada's chief public health officer, Dr. David Butler-Jones:
"The studies have been pretty clear and consistent that vaccination is not the cause of many of the things that have been claimed around the vaccine," he said.

And there's this from Health Canada:
Misconception: Vaccines are linked to chronic diseases such as autism, multiple sclerosis (MS), and Crohn's disease.
The Facts: These are false claims made by anti-vaccine books and Web sites. Recent research using the best scientific methods, and reviews of studies from around the world, provide strong evidence that ...

I could go on and on. The side telling you that vaccines are safe and one of the greatest tools of modern medicine is the side that does scientific research and that has your interests at heart. They're the educated, intelligent, careful people.

On the other side is Jenny McCarthy and her band of technical illiterates. Jenny is mad and has decided, in the face of all evidence, that vaccines made her son autistic. She and others like her have forced the scientific establishment to prove relentlessly something that was already beyond a reasonable doubt: vaccines have no relationship to autism.

But that's not how the Citizen paints it. There are "two sides" to this debate. And the Citizen is going to tell you both of them.
The theory that childhood vaccines are behind an upsurge of autism cases emerged in the 1990s and in recent years has gained high-profile advocates such as Hollywood star Jenny McCarthy

That's not a theory. It's completely unfair to use scientific language to make stupid, illiterate, many-times debunked claims sound scientific. A "theory" in science is an explanation for a body of facts. The anti-vaccination crowd has no facts. There's no correlation between vaccines and autism. There's nothing to explain. Their "theory" is an explanation for something that doesn't exist.

I could as easily have a "theory" on how to keep leprechauns from stealing your vegetables. Until someone finds leprechauns in their garden, it's not a theory.

The Citizen ought to be blisteringly excoriated for this pathetic attempt to stoke a controversy and for its endangerment of the general health of the public.

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Curious Decision: Abusive Husband gets Alimony

You'd think that this would be an exception to the rule.

I'm all for consistent application of the law across genders. If a woman can cheat on her husband and get support payments while the divorce is pending, so should a man. But does that law really, as the judge suggests, extend to making death threats to your spouse and committing assault?

The assault is not in question. The man received a suspended sentence and was ordered not to come anywhere near his wife and children (the divorce is still pending). But the judge in this case ruled that his conduct wasn't relevant at this point.

Mind you, once they hit the actual divorce trial, his assault will come in to play - just as infidelity or other "misconduct" would.

But it still seems unjust and damn strange that the law compels someone to pay $6000 every month to the a guy who threatened to kill her. Note that he might not have actually laid a hand on her. If the writer is using the legal definition of "assault", it might mean that he only threatened her. As if that matters.

The judge didn't seem to like making the ruling, noting that it was a matter of principle and that the whole thing should get ironed out at the divorce trial. In the mean time, somewhat passive-aggressively, the judge increased the child support Mr. Takhar must pay to his wife by $1000/month.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Now I'm Defending Religious Expression

Of course I am.

You've got the right to express your religion in your self-employed, private workplace. I can't imagine it any other way.

Apparently this secular Jewish fellow can't, though, according to Montreal bylaws.

I'm not a big fan of religion. It reeks of despotism and mindless obedience. But if you're choosing to be mindlessly obedient, that's your thing. As long as you stop swinging your fists at my face and your mezuzah isn't a fire hazard, it's really none of my business how you waste your time.

He hangs family pictures and religious/cultural artifacts around his cab. A Christian will hang rosary beads around his mirror. A Hindu, Muslim and Sikh are welcome to do the same as long as they're following laws about keeping the road visible from the driver's seat. Followers of the IPU can hang punctured red socks.

I can't imagine that this "Montreal bylaw" which says cabbies can't have objects or inscriptions in their cabs that are "not required for the taxi to be in service." could possibly be constitutional.

If he were a public servant, employed by the government, I could see invoking a rule.

If he were posting religious passages demanding the death or mutilation of others, I could see invoking a rule.

But in his cab? His private cab? Tiny, religiously inspired texts calling down blessing of protection?

No. There's no need to push this guy around.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

The NDP Need To Pick a Side, huh?

That's what Ignatieff told us.

It seems like a stupid thing to say, but it's not the first.

The retort is blatantly simple. The "sides" in this discussion are not "conservative politicians" and "liberal politicians". One does not choose "sides" between two sets of elites.

The side that the NDP has taken is that of the recently unemployed, the victims of the banking shenanigans that caused the economic mess in which we find ourselves. They took the side of some of the worse off.

Maybe it's not a side that entered in to Mr. Ignatieff's thoughts. Maybe he's a little too mired in politics to realize that he's supposed to be on the side of the people, not the side of a political party.

Mr. Layton's move was surely calculated. I'm sure polls and party financing entered in to it. To pretend otherwise is naive. These things are always calculated.

But in this case he did pick a side: the side of people. It may mean voting with the Liberal Party - occasionally. It may mean voting with the Conservative party - somewhat less frequently. But straying from one party to another doesn't mean he doesn't have a philosophical guideline, which seems to be Ignatieff's implication.

Nice try, Iggy. Better luck next time.

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