Thursday, December 04, 2008

Prorogate This

So our government failed to overthrow itself. At least we got a new word to throw about.
A prorogation is the period between two sessions of a legislative body. When a legislature or parliament is prorogued, it is still constituted (that is, all members remain as members and a general election is not necessary), but all orders of the body (bills, motions, etc.) are expunged. (In the British parliament, this has now changed somewhat in that Public Bills can be carried over from one session to another.)
Parliamentary session - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

To me it seems like we've got two groups looking to look good in front of the Canadian people by campaigning on each others shortcomings while already elected. That shit sucks during election time, but it's out of hand when it happens after an election and BEFORE a throne speech.

Bah.

One would think that with a minority government ALL parties ought to work to form a coalition. I suppose that's what governing with the consent is all about but that's just not happening. What's happening is a farce.
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Thursday, October 30, 2008

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Free Tom Waits Concert

Stop what you're doing. Seriously, stop it. Follow the link, get a drink, and bask in the glory of Waits.
Glitter And Doom: Tom Waits In Concert : NPR Music

NPR is so fucking awesome.
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Monday, October 06, 2008

How much is $700bn?

Enough to do some leveling of the playing field.
How much is $700bn? From Duncan Green @ Oxfam
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Wednesday, October 01, 2008

SHAD

He's good, I was just reminded that I should go get his album when I heard him on r3 today.

Embedded Video

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Music from a Video Site

Weird.





Turbo.



Zappa.



Punker Scum.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Giving Candy to Babies

They Like it.




A good, if a little awkward, piece on the ballillion balaialout.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Really Trashy TV

Check out the photos - The process of making reality-tv can be even worse than the final product.
"Reality" TV Gets Real Trashy - C/O Tree Climber's Coalition
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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Legislature canceled!?!

B.C. Liberals cancel fall session of legislature
Via CBC.CA

For reals? There's nothing that needs dealing with? This is the kind of job I need! I wouldn't be renovating at night if I could just decide I wasn't needed at work for a few months.

One question though - they still get paid right? I wouldn't want anyone to have to actually do anything like show up in exchange for money.
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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Rat meat in demand as inflation bites | Oddly Enough | Reuters

PHNOM PENH (Reuters) - The price of rat meat has quadrupled in Cambodia this year as inflation has put other meat beyond the reach of poor people, officials said on Wednesday.
Rat meat in demand as inflation bites | Oddly Enough | Reuters

So I was going to complain about the weather or something, but never mind.
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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Who To Believe

I'm back, and I haven't finished the long post about where I've been yet so let's all laugh at a federal Minister.
"Who do you want to believe? Do you want to believe published articles in the New England Journal or Lancet, do you want to believe the World Health Organization or do you want to believe Tony Clement? It's embarrassing."
Federal health minister slams Insite injection site - Canada.com
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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Hip Ster

"Now, one mutating, trans-Atlantic melting pot of styles, tastes and behavior has come to define the generally indefinable idea of the “Hipster."

Hipster: The Dead End of Western Civilization - Douglas Haddow / Adbusters

In this Adbusters essay Haddow argues Western culture has reached a point of self-obsessed aesthetic vacuum. He hits on some things that really turn me off about some of the scenes I happen across. I can't really say it's just hipsters, but I notice a tendency to plunder past movements without finding future meaning, and a phenomenal obsession with fashion and the self.

Escapism is fun, but this is a very lazy form that sucks meaning out of past icons.

It's not all innocent fun either, the obsession with the self is spoiling it of that. If it were innocent people could still wear a checkered scarf and have it mean something, someone could push a movement or style forward without it being adopted and sucked dry of meaning and sold back to the crowd hungry to experience the revolution.

It seems so noncommittal.

Back to the article though, it's Haddow's last statement that really gets me.


We are a lost generation, desperately clinging to anything that feels real, but too afraid to become it ourselves. We are a defeated generation, resigned to the hypocrisy of those before us, who once sang songs of rebellion and now sell them back to us. We are the last generation, a culmination of all previous things, destroyed by the vapidity that surrounds us. The hipster represents the end of Western civilization – a culture so detached and disconnected that it has stopped giving birth to anything new.

Haddow is both wrong and right here. They (we) are not a defeated generation, merely defeatist, committed to reinforcing the hipocrisy that came before in some vain pursuit of finding meaning without having to actually make any.

There are real people among this generation - the activists calling for change, the artists creating meaningful work, the journalists covering more than street fashion and afterpartys. The problem is that the aimless masses that grew up with participation points for just being there are killing it out there for the people killing it out there.


Where he's right is in saying our culture is so detached it's on the verge of collapse. I don't think we'll literally fall apart, but all meaning other than self-centered escape will dissapear.
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Friday, July 25, 2008

Blown Fuse

Over the course of the last month I've said it outright on air, I've alluded to it on the blog, and I've announced it from stages in The Yukon and Ottawa. Fuse is about to be extinguished.
A. Putz Via Radio3

If you haven't had the pelasure of tuning in to fuse you're missing out. It's hit the end of an amazing road, and there are only a few new shows left to be broadcast.

 The sessions page on radio 3 has a list of recorded fuse shows, but they're painfully out of order and unlabeled:


Don't worry though, each and every one is worth a listen, Especially the Abdominal/Faberge show.

The show on August 2nd is one I'm really excited for because I'm a big fan of The Sunparlour Players.


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Plasma Bullets

"We have discovered what makes the Northern Lights dance," declares UCLA physicist Vassilis Angelopoulos, principal investigator of the THEMIS mission."
NASA - Plasma Bullets Spark Northern Lights

Pretty freaking cool if you ask me.
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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Stupidity, Pain, and Sangria

I have what is most likely a herniated disc.
My lower-back hurts like a mofo, and I have a really not-cool-at-all pain running from there down my legs.
Sweet Apple Juice.

So I'm juicing the ibuprofen, stretching, and complaining a lot. The thing is though, I only have myself to blame on this one.
I lifted (dead lifted) the weight when I knew I'd had a little bit of a back-pain issue a few weeks ago and should be taking it easy. I smoked for a long time, and still occasionally smoke a bit here and there, which from what I've read is a contributing factor. And now I've got to take it easy when I was just starting to make actual measurable gains at the gym.

It's Crapsauce.

You know what isn't crapsauce?

SANGRIA


I've been drowning my sorrows in the stuff, which may not help the healing but I've got my reasons.

About six to eight weeks ago I started a batch of homemade wine. Last week when it came time to check alcohol content, and bottle it we had a little tasting. Lo and behold, it tasted pretty awful.

So now I've got 5 gallons of 14%ish barely-passable vin ordinaire to get through. And since cheap wine is the cornerstone of a good spanish fiesta I've embarked upon a drunken mission to discover the perfect blend.

Sangria
In order of quantity from most to least

  • Cheap red wine
  • Fruit
  • A little fruit juice
  • Some sort of spirit (whiskey, rum, gin, tripplesec, whatever)
  • A little cinnamon or nutmeg

Optional:
  • Simple syrup or honey to taste
  • little umbrella
  • Bullfighting
*All the tinto de verano stuff is pretty great too.
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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Design Won't Save the World

This is true.


Uploaded on June 28, 2008
by frank-c

Electrosux

Why does electronic music have to be so... um... terrible.
Exhibit A:

We Are Your Friends - Justice vs. Simian
...That totally sounds new and fresh and not like what you'd hear 3 years ago.

There are a tonne of great musicians and bands out there composing and playing great music in every genre / creating new sounds. But why, oh god why, does really basic disco-trash seem to rise to the top of the electro heap? Every time I read about the newest awesome electronic music it's either danceclub shite for toothgrinding teens or mashup danceclub shite for skinny-jeaned alt-twerps.

I'm searching for good electronic music in any and every style. I need to be convinced here, because so far I can't seem to find anyone actually composing.

Exhibit B:
Paper Planes - M.I.A.
...80's style clubber shite electro, how fucking innovative. Seriously, her live show was so terrible and full of the 2 groups of boppers listed above I nearly vomited.

I'm not saying there isn't room for escapist fun-time party music, but why are so few groups out there pushing boundaries and finding success through innovation?

Probably for the same reason so few analogue bands are finding success through innovative composition, the path to success is paved with allowance-money.


and so I end my angry rant.
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Dell pulls through

To start with, I'm a converted user of mac and a reformed pc technician loving being able to carelessly abuse my computer without worrying about spyware or viruses. It's been amazingly stable other than the 2 dead internal hard drives, which kicked the bucket as a result of endless torrenting - serious, abusive, incessant, ridiculous torrenting.

I was very resistant to get my fiance anything other than another mac when her old pc was more than a little long in the tooth, but we bit the bullet and got her a dell.

why?

Well, honestly, it's pink.

I shit you not, pinkness was pretty much the deciding factor.

I've been furious with it a number of times, it failed to shut down out of the box, was kind of slow and crappy... All the normal pc bullshit I've been free of for the past three or so years.

It had gotten so bad that today I called dell tech support fully expecting the worst experience of my life.

But I was completely wrong. 

A knowledgable, patient, and curtious tech walked me through a few checks, then we started a remote desktop connection and within about 20 minutes he'd fixed the issue.

I was a little concerned because dell's crappy pc-chekup utility was giving me memory somthing-or-other errors, so he got me started on a diagnostic scan and set a callback appointment.

The scan came out all clean, and just as it was finishing I got a call back to check that everything was indeed working as it should.

I still hate vista, and believe pc-cillin is a pile of dogshit, but Dell rose a few rungs on my ladder of respect today.

Certainly a better experience than trying to call Apple for support on my mac - for that I go straight to the forums.
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Minty Fresh

I was given a nice little bouquet of freshly cut mint today. I think it was said to be chocolate-mint, but all I can tell from the smell is that it’s amazing.

Not the mint I was given but it kinda looked like this and I enjoy the photo - Pregnant by Andreas Kollegger

I’m relatively new to mint in forms other than tea, gum, and toothpaste, but I’ve quickly become a huge fan of the stuff.

I’m growing spearmint, peppermint, and an unidentified slightly lemony smelling mint I rescued from the bargain-rack at garden works. I’ve had a much better time with it than with the basils I regularly murder, so I’ve been using it more and more in my food and drink.

Number one on the list is the almighty mojito, my summer drink of choice. So far I’ve stuck to the traditional lime and soda, but a lychee version is my next beveralogical challenge.

Baked minty apples are good too, wherein you core an apple, fill with butter, brown-sugar, and some chopped mint before baking until fucking delicious.

Minty spot prawns weren’t a huge success; I think those things should probably just be eaten clean.

A minty cucumber and yogurt salad sounds good, but has yet to undergo testing in the Royal Hopkanowski Culinary Centre of Excellence and Excess. Same goes for mint pesto, sounds good but unproven.

Anybody have good ideas for mint other than the julep? Please, help me out. Seriously, unless I find ways to consume the stuff without alcohol I’m bound for the corner of hastings and main.

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Monday, July 14, 2008

Stuff

Spend 20 minutes on:
The Story of Stuff with Annie Leonard

I enjoy pretty much anything with a buy-less-shit message.
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Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Monday, July 07, 2008

Where’s your food from?

This story from the CBC has me thinking about food again. OK, so pretty much everything makes me think about food, but reading about food probably tops the list.

Anyway, it reminded me to check out the Deconstructing Dinner podcast. Deconstructing Dinner is a great show out of Kootenay Co-Op Radio. I’m sure I’ve linked there before but what with summer hitting Canada and local food being readily available it’s a great time to revisit food issues.

Right now I’m listening to the podcast titled Coffee, The Earth, and the Future of Civilization. It’s pretty interesting and it will change the way you think about the perfect cup.

I’m a coffee addict. I don’t just enjoy a cup, I freely admit to being hooked.

With that I want to point you to the best Americano in Metro-Vancouver – found at JJ-Bean on Commercial. It’s a medium ¾ full cup of heaven made with as much love as can be squeezed out of in-house-roasted beans and baristas in skinny-jeans. Apart from the delicious tomatoes and veggies at the Trout Lake Farmers Market it’s probably the highlight of my Saturday mornings.

Sure Artigiano is fancy and Starbucks is convenient, but both are pretentious and should be avoided at all costs by people who favour flavour.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Mending Webs

Repairing spiderwebs - a fantastically creative bit of work by Nina Katchadourian.
Check it out:

Marketing Tips for Spiders
Cibachrome, 30 x 20 inches, 1998

An attempt to teach a spider how to advertise.

Sold!

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Thursday, July 03, 2008

Thirty Thousand Invaders!

30,000 escaped farmed salmon raise concerns in B.C
From the CBC

Whatever, it's oceanic multiculturalism. Think of them as immigrants and it's awesome instead of terrible, although you do have to ignore the belief that they'll spend lots of their time decimating remaining Pacific stocks.

How fucked is it that we call them salmon stocks and not simply salmon. I guess they really are thought of a nothing more than a commodity.

Sophia Michelle Roden Douglass



This little girls is amazing.
I spent the long weekend in Kelowna with her parents, and she got cranky a total of 3 times.
2 of those were because I insist on antagonizing children.

Awesome baby.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Buck 65 w/ Symphony Nova Scotia

If you enjoy good music you owe it to yourself to give this a listen.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Russian spa opens monument to the enema - Yahoo! News

When I first saw the photo I was like "Finally, Someone is celebrating the beetroot!"

Russian spa opens monument to the enema
Yahoo! News

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Sunday, June 22, 2008

Belcarra

Helen and I went for a great ride out to Belcarra Sunday. Gorgeous weather, very little traffic; Made me want to move out there.



Friday, June 20, 2008

What's the Best Thing to do With $490 Billion

The Conservative government has quietly released the details of its extensive plan to beef up the military, including spending $490 billion over the next 20 years
Federal government quietly releases $490B military plan

This.
Totally, this.
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Screw You Vancouver!

This is why I hate this place.

If the link isn't working for you, it's the results of a CKNW poll on whether police should ticket homeless people for sleeping on city streets, and 52% of people are in favour.

Not that I don't believe there's something wrong with people sleeping on the streets, but what are people thinking?!?

Seriously, fuck this place.

*pardon my language, idiocy makes me sweary.


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Wednesday, June 18, 2008

They Rule

A neat site I found stumbling.

http://www.theyrule.net

too busy to hotlink
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Monday, June 16, 2008

Media Modnay - Sports Edition

This may not make me friends.

I absolutely hate most sports-media. The radio stations, the TV-shows, the ninety seconds I have to sit through between the news and whatever show I actually want to hear/watch; I hate it.

Even the printed papery bits I get every morning.

Oh, and I especially hate it when something leaks from the sports-section into the “real” news section of the paper or show. It burns me that in our world the end of a hockey career takes precedent over issues of real impact in all our lives. I believe it shows that the core of media-communications is rotten.

I’m not saying there is absolutely no good sports-media out there. The Inside Track is a great example of what a sports show can be. Last night I got to know real athletes pushing their limits, and got a lesson in physics from an archer – sounds dorky but it was really cool actually analyze the sport instead of just hearing puked up stats and bravado.

Generally though, sports-media is a lot like American election coverage. It’s glossy, shiny, and light as hell on content. It’s like an excel spreadsheet just crapped into a mic. Good media is made by, to use a sports metaphor, digging deep. Great media is made with deep-diggin’ and a healthy dose of abstraction.

 It’s why top gear absolutelyfuckingdestroys other car shows – although I do struggle a little with calling motorsports motorsports.

Anyway, this is kind of a big roundabout way of slagging some crap I don’t like and sending a public thank you to The Inside Track.



 

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Friday, June 13, 2008

Fixie Flatland?!?

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I'm in your windows growin' your food

Window-Hydro for sustainable growth. Worth checking out, it would probably be pretty cheap and easy to set something like this up.

Discovery News: Sustainable: Hydroponics Comes Out of the Closet

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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Copyright Time! Weeee!

Copyright law could result in police state: critics

It's been tabled.

I hope this gets crushed.

I also hope the power behind this (Prentice et al.) choke on a big bag of dicks.

Start calling your MP's offices. Be cool though, don't threaten their children's lives, maybe their chiuauas, but not their children.

**Don't actually threaten anyone's chiuauas

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Awesome Camera Shop

I can't say enough about how great my experiences have been with Kerrisdale Cameras. It was maybe two years ago when I was first shopping around for a digital SLR. I chose the D-80 because it fit my older Nikon lenses, and I really preferred the fit and feel to that of the Canon whatever that was in the same price range.

They matched the best price I could find, which is a challenge for any non-mega-store, and I was happily on my way to filling my hard drive with photos.

About a year in it quit turning off. The switch just wouldn't work. It was definitely my fault, I'd treated the thing less than gently, but they sent it to Nikon for warranty repairs and when it looked like it wouldn't make it back in time for my vacation we swapped for a new body they had in the store. That's without having to buy some bogus extended warranty.

Now I've managed to loose my charger, and they've got a replacement there for me as well as a cheaper generic charger so I can check out both and take the one I want.

It's more than what you'd get at a mega store. I checked with London Drugs and they told me to go to Nikon's repair centre and try to get one there. The kid at Futureshop just kind of looked at me funny and said he didn't think you could by them. I don't know why I even bothered checking with those places, Kerrisdale checked their stock at other stores and brought the stuff to the one closest to me, and they didn't just bring in the one with the most profit built-in, they brought me options.

Oh, and the people who work there seem to actually know cameras. That's something that can't really be said for the armchair experts at the big boxes. I hope they continue to survive and thrive, we need more Kerrisdales in this world.

The Greenest of Getaways

I'm just stoked that more people are cycling in Dawson.


Robber fled Dawson Creek bank on bicycle
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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

BMW Fabric Car

Shawing!

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Bike, Bubble, Bloom

This is the greatest thing ever!

Last year I played around with planting wildflowers in this crappy concrete jungle. I got seeds and planted heaps, I made some seed balls and chucked them places. A few grew, but most just kind of died because I didn’t make time to care for them and they just got buried under McGarbage.

Had I been seeding wherever I went my marginal success would have made a real impact simply because of scale.

That, and bubbles rule.

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Monday, June 09, 2008

So Long Sullivan

Sam's out, which is probably the worst thing to happen to Vision in the past couple of weeks. I'm now looking forward to a good competition even though I don't live in Vancouver.

6 days to go until we know who will be flying the Vision flag.

Out east, there's just no real excitement. My mayor, papa Corrigan, aint goin' nowhere.
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Friday, June 06, 2008

Ignore it, It'll go away.

I'm working on a dream list of eco-exhibitors and speakers for a proposed conference / event, so I'm surfing around chekcing in with the usual suspects and what do I find at the wonderful desmogblog but this:

Sloughing off a court decision which held that a proposed Imperial Oil (i.e. Exxon Canada) oilsands project is an environmental hazard in the waiting, the Conservative Cabinet of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper gave a green light to the development yesterday.
Canadian Government, Media Officially Unconcerned About Environment | DeSmogBlog

The story can be found in the business section of the globenmail, because really that's where belongs...riiiight...

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Jeeves and Wooster

Somehow I've managed to catch the show a few times over the past week. The show is good, but the music, it's fantastic!





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Thursday, June 05, 2008

Lobbying, Influence, and Honesty

24 Hours made good use of an access to information request with Washington state and is reporting some doublespeak with regards to influence peddling and what may or may not be unregistered lobbyists.

Good Connections Open Doors

Definitely not as cool as the Hotel Lobbyists.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Old Photos

I got a huge stack of old photos and slides from my Dad and I'm slowly working my way through scanning them. I threw a heap up on flickr but the uploader went bananas yesterday so I've got a heap of duplicates to dig through.

Anyway, it brings back great memories of growing up.me.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Copywrong Time Again

The federal government is secretly negotiating an agreement to revamp international copyright laws which could make the information on Canadian iPods, laptop computers or other personal electronic devices illegal and greatly increase the difficulty of travelling with such devices.

Copyright deal could toughen rules governing info on iPods, computers

This article is one of the most horrifying things I've read this year. You owe it to yourself and to Canada to read this shit and take action.

Write your MP and voice your opposition to crazy copyright reform in Canada. That is, unless you like having security personnel and border guards go through your laptops and iPods looking for stuff that might be pirated, or if you really do believe your isp should be handing over your personal information to copyright holders without so much as a court order.

It is sick that a minority government might be able to push something like this through. It shows a lack of respect and no small degree of ignorance on the part of Canadians at large.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Canadian Casinos Cleaning Cash?

The casino situation in British Columbia is fucking depressing. Over the past few decades we’ve been apathetic enough to allow them to become an integral component of our social and public service system. Anyone who has ever worked a bingo for their swim club or bussed trays for baseball understands the dynamic well. Gambling takes advantage of the most vulnerable among us, reaps (or rapes) a great profit, and trickles a little down the line to the organizations in need.

Yet we’re all so placid that only the few and the brave (we like to call them radicals or agitators) among us say anything outside of our own four walls, except for maybe when we’re in Starbucks’ four walls and we want to sound all progressive and shit.

Now, after years of wrangling with FOI requests and some great undercover work the CBC has shed some light into the dark corner we knew was there all along.

As part of the investigation, CBC reporters exchanged thousands of dollars in bills of $20 and $100 for cheques from the casino, demonstrating how criminals could use the gambling operations to hide illegal revenues.Documents obtained by the CBC also showed casino workers routinely observed dozens of suspicious financial transactions each year, but only a fraction were reported to the federal agency that tracks money laundering.

Premier awaits review of casino allegations

So not only is our system so bent that we rely on gamblers to keep our organizations running, but we’ve set ourselves up with a beautifully handy cleaning system.

Just

Fucking

Great.

I’m really bent out of shape about this. It follows the all-too-common theme of negligence when it comes to the oversight of risky business.

What kind of person turns down money because they suspect it’s of illegal or questionable origin? Are they the same kind of people who run gaming houses and casinos? Is it the low-wage earners working the front counter who may risk their jobs or their personal safety by reporting their suspicions? Can anyone honestly answer yes to those questions?

Relying on those who stand to profit the most to regulate themselves is bunk. It’s bunk when it comes to industry, it’s doubly bunk when it comes to policing in casinos and gaming centres.

We’d still be in this mess even if we had reliable funding for public programs and services, but we’d be able to deal with the issues in a way that doesn’t cripple our communities that now rely on gambling as a source of income. As it is, whatever losses BC’s casinos may take will surely affect more than those responsible. From the province, to our cities, to our clubs and charities that are most in need.

Boo.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Anywhere I Lay My Head

Scarlett, I'm upset. You took a heap of great music and recycled it into emotionless vanity-pop crap-o.

Why would Tom Waits authorize this sort of thing? I guess it kind of bridges him into the younger demographic that a Scarlett Johansson might attract, but gah! Have you heard this thing? The album is a waste of time.

“He's been really supportive - not from the sidelines, but from a far, far distance.”
GIGWISE, Scarlett Johansson: 'I Feared Tom Waits Would Get My Ass Beat In A Bar'

Which is exactly the distance I reccommend you keep yourself away from this steaming pile.

Don't even bother torrenting it. Just stay away. Far, far, away.


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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Climbing

I was away all weekend in Squamish climbing.

I go so rarely that I forget each time how amazing climbing really is. That feeling of superhuman accomplishment after working your way up a rock that really shouldn't be climbable. I love that nervous tension that comes from the fear of falling. It takes me a bit to settle in to trusting the equipment, which I think is healthy, but makes for some shaky repels at first.

No photos, I lost my camera charger. Trust me though, it was epic. The climbs in Raven's Castle are pretty dope because you're already most of the way up the Chief so you're looking way down on little Squamish below.

My great new discovery was lying on my stomach by the edge of a cliff. It feels like you're about to be pulled off into thin air.

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Oscar Peterson on Piano Jazz

The best. Spend an hour and recognize.

Listen Now from NPR Music.

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Thursday Top Ten!

I haven't done many lists, but I'm busy so here goes:

10. Citrus on roasted carrots and beans. It's sofuckingdelicious. Take some carrots and green beans, toss them in olive oil, salt, pepper, and squeeze a lemon on them. Roast - eat - be happy.

9. Dry pavement. Longboarding wins ok.

8. Dan’s Homebrew Supplies. For the cost of a batch of wine at a U-brew I got a kit and all the hardware I needed to make the stuff at home. I’m 28 days from drunk.

7. The Tazer probe. I can’t think of anything that sounds more painful than a tazer probe, and my Polish ancestry and transit-rider status make me think probing some tazerers is a good thing.

6. JJ Bean on Commercial Drive. Best friggin Americano in town, and delicious delicious beans for home use.

5. Connect360. No more burning dvd’s.

4. The University of Alberta. I forget why though...

3. Summer in Vancouver.

2. Parties that party.

1. Making things so you don’t have to buy them.

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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Wet Wednesday

Slayer - Raining Blood


Found at skreemr.com

It's raining. Gah.
Honestly, my attraction to the lower mainland is wearing thin by the day.




CCR - Who'll Stop The Rain


Found at skreemr.com

Monday, May 12, 2008

EnCana Breaks off a Little Sumpin

Now every once in a while
There's a crack in my smile
Dark voices are talking to me
Dark voices tell me the way
It's supposed to be
They said "Breakin' up"
They said "It's hard to do"
But what they say
About breakin' up
Y'know it's just not true
Breakin' up, it's easy to do


EnCana has long held it is undervalued by the market and has previously considered spinning off a chunk of its business, believing that the company is less than the sum of its parts. - CNN

I makes sense in a few different ways.

I’m sure investors will be happy with a boost in value. By splitting the tarsands from natural gas EnCana’s halves (or 7/8ths & 1/8th) are massively more understandable.

It also insulates Encana’s natural gas operations from any volatility in tarsands extraction – and I for one thing this is the biggie here. Tarsands extraction is one of the most environmentally unsound practices around, and sooner or later someone’s going to be on the hook for a cleanup bill bigger than that time your buddy invited the entire high school over for a party while his/her parents were away. It’s good for EnCana to protect its traditional core should politics shift in Oilberta, or federally for that matter.

It’s the beginning of a trend, I for one think we’ll see a number of similar spinoffs as companies struggling for capital to move more aggressively into the tarsands will split themselves in an effort to both boost valuation and insulate themselves from what could turn ugly.

**Disclaimers: I won’t call it oil sands, the tarsands is tarsands dagnabbit. Also, I think it already has turned pretty ugly, ducks right?

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

MIA

I've been away.
It was good.
I may post photos.
Dawson is a strange town full of strange people that I love. I'll tell you a story sometime, just remind me after I've had a drink or two.

-mb

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

High(er) Education

Emily Carr joins in the 'university status' parade... students plan collaborative multi-medium installation based on themes of 'arbitrary semantics' and 'the ability of language to define reality, man'?
Morning Brew: April 30

  • Vocational School
  • College
  • University
  • Technical Institution

 It’s all higher education, but each of the above titles/brands has a distinct meaning. Doctors aren’t generally trained at the same institution as electricians. It follows then that perhaps the institution designed to train doctors may be a different kind of organization than the one that trains electricians.

What has happened over the past week in post-secondary education has been very interesting. Kwantlen is now a polytechnic-university. Douglas is now a university, so is Capilano, and Emily Carr, and Malaspina became a university instead of a university-college.

So what does it mean? Well, I personally think it cheapens the university brand. I have a lot of respect for Capilano university, I studied there and learned a tonne, but can any of us honestly say it’s a university in the same way as UBC/SFU/UofA ?

No, not really.

That's not to say I don't believe in higher education outside of the university pool - I'm mostly college and technical-institution educated, and very happy for it. What I do believe in is a little specialization, which I think is being lost here.

I hope for a big boost in our ability to support the transfer of credentials and credits between institutions.

What I fear is an even more unclear landscape for students.

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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tuesday Tunes

George Harrison wrote Badge with Eric Clapton. It’s a good song.

Cream - Badge


Found at skreemr.com
This next one is good too. It's probably the "song I learned to play guitar so I'd be able to play that song" song.

Cream - Sunshine of Your Love


Found at skreemr.com

You should go to Dr. Mooney's and find some more songs written by beatles, Clapton, and other people. It's a good blog.



Homelessness :: Photos & Commentary

Over at the Vancouver Sun, Randy Shore and Daphne Bramham have a good slideshow of sorts on homelessness in Vancouver.
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Monday, April 28, 2008

Stealin' Booze

It wasn't me:

...the RCMP released an estimate that its cargo was 1,388 cases of wine — valued between $800,000 and $1 million, or about $60 a bottle.
But then:
...In the end, the thieves got only 168 cases of wine, worth about $20 a bottle.
Wine heist now a beer bust, Mounties say

Which is still a pretty good haul mind you, and paired with the right cheese even a lowly $20 bottle of wine is acceptable. Anyone taking bets on when la Grotta or Amis will be knocked over?
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Saltspring Photos

I Went to Saltspring Island on Saturday with some family. It was nice

Picture 038

I don't know what these are called but they're beautiful.

Assertive Geese
The geese weren't too happy with us clomping around.

Picture 011
The coastguard has some sweet boats these days.

Picture 016
Oh, and the moss in the damper areas is pretty neat-o.