For Goodness Sake

Rant-(website)Okay, I know that I’ve come across as grumpy and negative lately. Truth is, I’m actually quite tired of posting these rants against what I see as a growing trend in global and national injustice. But I do have my reasons. And I’m really not as miserable a person as I may seem in these pages. I’m actually a very optimistic person.

I had every intention of writing about something positive and uplifting today. But then I made the mistake of watching the morning news, and all that went out the window. It will have to wait for another day. For now, I have something to get off my chest. Something that affects all Canadians.

See For Goodness Sake in the Ramblings section of this blog.

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Coming to a City Near You

Rant-(website)Folks, I wish the world would become a calm, peaceful place just long enough for me to get back to writing optimistic and uplifting blogs. I really do. But unfortunately, the crazies out there keep grabbing the headlines, and when they do I feel obliged to comment.

Especially when the topic is, in my view, one of the most pressing social issues facing us today; lethally-armed, military-trained, and force-sanctioned civilian police once tasked with “protecting us” who, because of their increasing paranoia & fear, are at risk of someday becoming our greatest local threat. It’s already happening in the States. And, as conditions likewise change in Canada, this sad decline in our peace services may eventually work its way north.

It’s not too late to change things. There is something we can do. I have a few thoughts on this.

See Coming to a City Near You in the Ramblings section of this blog.

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A New Day

Thank you, Canada!! You’ve restored my faith in this great nation of ours.

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The New Hammer

Rant-(website)Remember that old truism that “if all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail”? We smugly say it whenever we wish to mock those who use the wrong means – the wrong tool – to remedy their problems. To me it has always seemed like a benign saying… until now. Because, with only a slight bit of tweaking it reveals a frightening new truism which plunges us into a 21st century conflict of beliefs that threatens our very way of life and liberty.

See The New Hammer in the Ramblings section of this blog.

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Now Who’s Being Unfair?

Rant-(website)Today’s MLB post-season American League opener between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Texas Rangers will be held under a closed dome. This despite gorgeous weather in Toronto. The Rangers own home field is an open-air stadium, so I’m guessing they would prefer to play under a big, sunny sky. And the Jays and their fans love an open roof. So what’s the deal?

I mean baseball always was, and still is, an outdoor game, meant to be played in the open air and sunshine. Covered stadiums were built merely to allow games to be played whenever inclement weather would otherwise force a cancellation. That’s the only time the roof should be closed. So what gives when the league (not the home team) chooses to keep the roof closed on a gorgeous fall day? Seems like an odd decision, doesn’t it?

Well, it would seem that MLB decided that allowing the home team (in this case, the Blue Jays) the right to keep their stadium roof open would provide them an “unfair advantage” over their opponents. Really? Even though the Rangers play their home games in Globe Life Park, itself an open-air stadium in Arlington, Texas, having the Rogers Stadium roof open would favour the Jays? Really?!

I’m sure it has nothing to do with the fact that the Jays are 38-14 with the dome open, yet only 11-14 with it closed. Nor that having a Canadian team make it into the playoffs, or even (horror of horrors) into the World Series, might be bad for all that lucrative US broadcast and advertising revenue.

Give me a break! MLB has already scheduled the Jays’ playoff games into random non-primetime broadcast slots. That petty move, along with dome-gate, makes it obvious that they’re doing their best to ensure that only American teams make it to the final league playoff games and the World Series. If I didn’t think I was being too overly paranoid, I might even suspect that they had something to do with Taylor Swift’s appearance at the stadium right before the Jays’ playoff season gets underway (apparently she has a history of jinxing home teams wherever she performs).

But that jest aside, it’s not like MLB hasn’t done this before. Hell, back in 1994 they concocted a trumped-up labour dispute excuse to cancel the balance of the baseball season when it looked like that year’s World Series opponents might end up being the Toronto Blue Jays vs. the Montreal Expos… Toronto for its third World Series appearance in a row, and Montreal its first. Oh, how horrible that would have been, eh? (Not!)

Sadly, big money definitely rules our favourite international summer sport. You know, sometimes the “hidden” tactics of MLB to appease its sponsors and business affiliates are so obvious it’s pitiful. But let’s not let that ruin the game for us.

Go Jays!!

Added note: MLB must be pleased, because the Jays lost both closed-roof games.

Final note: It seems clear from the calls in last night’s post-season game-5 with KC that all questionable rulings were to go in favour of the American team. Hence that fan-caught ball that should have been called what it was – fan interference – and therefore a ground-ruled double instead of a home run… the blatant ignoring of a couple of un-called balks committed by Wade Davis… and that high-outside 4th pitch “strike” called against Revere in the top of the 9th that put him 2-2 instead of 3-1 with two runners in scoring position. All of these calls defied questioning by the players or Gibbons. In fact, Gibbons own resigned attitude at the end of the game made it plain that he realized the refs had determined the outcome of the game and there was nothing he could do about it. I get that the MLB needs its lucrative World Series advertising revenue, but I never wanted to believe that it would come at the expense of the spirit of the game. Oh well, it’s the 21st century folks, and fairness and integrity seem to have taken a backseat to the bottom line. Guess we’ll have to get used to that from now on.

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Fear and Loathing in Harper’s Canada

Rant-(website)

Hey, Canada. It’s time to make a much-needed change. It’s time to pull ourselves out of this national nose dive that has us all hell-bent on becoming more and more like our paranoid and extremist neighbours to the south.

Every day, news stories reach us about over-the-top police and political reactions to innocent activities that are treated as criminal behaviour or terrorist plots. All because the people of the great nation of America are being kept in a constant state of fear. Do we want that to happen here? Of course not. But unless we change directions soon, that’s where we’re headed. I have some views on this.

See Fear and Loathing in Harper’s Canada in the Ramblings section of this blog.

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Winners and Losers

Rant-(website)A recent online article caught my attention, about a young rapper/comedienne who posted a video mocking obese people. Her “Dear Fat People” video is a vulgar and hateful taunt against people who weren’t endowed with slim bodies like hers.

These kinds of attacks on regular folk by people of privilege are becoming too commonplace, and irk me to no end. Especially when these people have gotten to where they are because of fans many of whom may be the same people they’re mocking. When did being humble and grateful for one’s blessings in life give way to cocky, rude, and tactless bragging and tasteless ridicule? I have a few thoughts on this.

See Winners and Losers in the Ramblings section of this blog.

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