Monthly Archives: August 2012

Woof

“I was arrested at the rally for, “offending Islam” by walking in a PUBLIC park with my dog. Apparently, Muslims do not like dogs. I was warned by a few demonstrators not to go near them. Of course I ignored them and reminded them this is Canada, not Pakistan. Well I was assaulted and returned the favor in kind.

At that point I was jumped by four COPS, dragged off and hand cuffed. Oh my the police were so angry! They said I was, “insensitive” and “inciting a riot”. 30 minutes later they cut me a big deal. No charges if I left. So I left. Imagine this happening in Canada? Walking a licensed dog on a leash at the park in front of our Provincial Legislature and being arrested for that simple act!” blazing cat fur
As I commented at BCF, now we know what to bring to next year’s El Dud Day festivities – lots of big, friendly dogs.
(The police should, of course, be ashamed of themselves…but no fear of that.)

Privacy x 1,000,000

“I can tell you from the Department of Justice perspective, if that drive is encrypted, you’re done,” Ovie Carroll, director of the cyber-crime lab at the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section in the Department of Justice, said during his keynote address at the DFRWS computer forensics conference in Washington, D.C., last Monday. “When conducting criminal investigations, if you pull the power on a drive that is whole-disk encrypted you have lost any chance of recovering that data.” technology review

Other than a few mildly naughty pictures, there is really nothing on my hard drive which I would not be willing to share. But that is right now. Things change. Governments can become invasive.

And now, encryption is built right into your iPhone (though you need to have a slightly awkward pin – 10 digits).

Having secure storage and secure communications in the hands of private citizens is, by and large, benign. Yes, criminals and terrorists can and will use it; however, they were using it long before it became widely available. However, in the event that a government goes rogue or, for that matter, decides to simply extend its reach a little further than I might prefer, I like the idea that I can encrypt without a lot of hassle.

Dolts

The General Council of the United Church wants to boycott Israel.

There is a second vote on Friday to “affirm” this lunacy.

I wrote at some length as to why churches are dying.

Apparently, the General Council of the United Church figures the United Church is not dead enough.

Dolts.

 

Ya think?

But Abacus also polled Canadians on how they felt Quebec should be treated while it still remains a part of Canada. The answer? Equally, and if that means Quebec leaves, so be it. Specifically, a whopping 88% of polled Canadians agreed with the statement that “All the provinces should be treated equally, even if it upsets Quebec and risks separation.” Again, that’s not a surprise to anyone who’s been paying attention to the tenor of the debate over the last few years. But what is interesting is how that massive number completes cuts across Canadian society. Support for Quebec staying in Canada varies significantly across different provinces and by political affiliation, but that 88% figure is eye-poppingly large. national post

While there are still a few Trudeau era Liberals skulking in forgotten corners of Ontario and the Maritimes, the reality is that Canadians are fed up with being held to ransom by Quebec politicians.

I am rooting for the PQ. And I hope they win big and get on with separation. And I hope Harper does not lift a finger to stop them.

Hard core? Not really. Watching the silly Quebec students who pay the lowest tuition in Canada (subsidized by, well, the rest of Canada)  take to the streets over a $1.00 a day fee increase pretty much put paid to any lingering desire I might have had to keep Quebec in Canada.

It is well past time for Quebec to leave the nest and get a job.

The Garden

It was hot and sunny and delightful this weekend in Victoria. I gardened.

Well I did a bunch of stuff with the boys, got shot up in a Nerf war, did a bit of work; but mainly I gardened.

This house is blessed with a big garden. The bones were set down by the first Reeve of Oak Bay when he built the house in 1939. It has trees and 70 year old rhotos and a lot of falling down rock work.

I am the stoop labour.

There are wonderful raised beds out there somewhere beneath the grass, the ivy and the blackberry. So my gardening is all about excavation. Striping back literally decades of neglect to reveal… well, old, infertile, soil.

We lease the house from wonderful landlords and, with a bit of luck, we’ll have a couple of yards of topsoil and a yard of manure to dig into the beds I’ve revealed.

But, for the moment, it is strip, dig, screen the soil, move to the next five square feet.

On a warm day, with beer chilling, it is a very perfect afternoon. The boys will come out and tear up some ivy for a while and chat to Dad. I rest my back throwing a few football or frisbee passes. Susan, bless her soul, sends the little guy out with a refreshing beverage around 3:00 (and a reminder to wash my feet before coming inside to her clean floors).

My elder son, Sam, arrives with a plan to use his compressor to power a potato cannon. It sounds plausible, if extremely dangerous and deeply neighbour unfriendly. He scored an air powered stapler and headless pin driver at a garage sale and is blasting away in his workshop.

The hairy hound, much shorn due to the heat, is lightly tethered (deer and, more importantly, bunnies and squirrels) in deep shade a few feet away. He is a very social animal, never happier than when he is smelling distance from Dad. (A distance which increased as the afternoon wore on.)

At the end of the afternoon the hedges had been drip watered, one end of the veggie garden weeded, ivy trimmed from a Garry Oak, and about 15 square feet of overgrown rock walled raised bed cleared of vegetation. It does not sound like much but it was a 16×8 tarp full of debris.

I was dirty, smelly, a bit sun touched and very pleased with myself.

 

Perfect

The highlight of the show was Eric Idle singing Always Look on the Bright Side of Life. It’s a happy song for a difficult age and it evokes that most stoic and ironic of sounds: cockney good cheer. tim stanley, the telegraph

And, best of all, it is entirely irreverent – a quality the Brits used to have in spades.

Why Churches are dying

Among the most insidious aspects of the new leftist Jew-hate is its tactic of trotting out ridiculous Jewish anti-Zionist fanatics and displaying them like comical banners at the front of an April Fool’s parade. In that vein, the United Church’s of Canada’s Comox-Nanaimo Presbytery’s declaration that they “work with Jewish organizations such as Independent Jewish Voices, which are committed to seeing Justice for the people of Palestine” is less offensive than if Shutzstaffelleader Heinrich Himmler had said “we are working with our Jewish labor camp kapos, who are committed to seeing justice for the Aryan people,” but we are only talking about degrees. eye on a crazy planet

The nice little old ladies who staff the Church sale down the hill often invite my wife to come to Sunday service. She was raised in the United Church and the invitation is attractive. The problem is, as it is in my own Anglican Church, that the clergy and the governing organizations of both churches have largely abandoned the worship of God for the more worldly delights of radical politics.

Is the United Church anti-semitic? I suspect not as a body but its leadership lacks all discernment.  The joke about the United Church being the NDP at prayer barely hints at the perils of the embrace of people like Diana Ralph and Independent Jewish Voices.

The nice ladies at the Church sale are vaguely aware of the damage the various “social justice” agendas has done to their Church. They can see their attendance dwindling and the aging of their congregation. The Anglicans I know see much the same thing. The ongoing consolidation of the Anglican church – which actually means closing churches – reflects the utter disinterest many Anglicans have in being hectored by radical clergy.

So, this Sunday, we’ll be voting with our feet and staying home. Which is sad because I think it is important for the boys to participate in a tradition of worship. But not at any cost.

Good News..I think

CAIRO — Hecklers and angry mourners chased Egypt’s new prime minister from the military funeral Tuesday of 16 border guards killed in an ambush by militants in the Sinai peninsula.

Bodyguards rushed Prime Minister Hesham Kandil to safety as mourners yelled, “You killed them, you dog,” Egypt’s state-run Ahram Online website reported.

The scene highlighted the anger many Egyptians feel over the government’s inability to stem an escalating Islamic militancy along Egypt’s border with Israel. In the Sunday attack, masked gunmen killed the border guards and hijacked a pair of armored vehicles in a plan to attack an Israeli border post.  la times

A setback for the Muslim Brotherhood is grand news for Egypt.

Ultimately Egypt has to decide if it wants a neighbourhood in the Middle East or get into a shooting war. So far the Army has opted for a neighbourly approach, sealing tunnels and calling in air strikes on the terroist encampments.

 

How long this will last is another thing altogether.

Avast: Zero Pirate attacks

Ships’ captains have been taught how to accelerate and evade attack. Hulls are now festooned with barbed wire and powerful water hoses to deter pirates as they try to climb aboard.

“All this has come at the same time as the quantum increase in the use of private armed security contractors, who have to date had a 100 per cent success rate preventing hijacks” said Rear Adm Potts….

“The naval forces would perhaps dispute this, but I would say that private security is by far the major factor, not the warships,” said Stig Jarle Hansen, a Norwegian expert on Somali piracy.

“Pirate commanders I have spoken to onshore tell me that its those armed guards they’re most afraid of.”

telegraph

Mercs work!

Robert Hughes

Seems like a blog of passing. Robert Hughes is dead.

Ignorant as I am of art and its criticism I have nothing to say about his life as an art critic; but two of his books, The Fatal Shore and the Culture of Complaint hold shelf space at my house. Possibly because of the fact they reflect something which Christopher Hitchens pointed out about Hughes:

Hitchens once noted that in Barcelona, Hughes described his beloved Catalonia as being, in temper, simultaneously revolutionary and conservative; then added that he might have had himself in mind.  sun herald

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