Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Geek out if you dare....(b.y.o.l=bring your own lightsabre)

Well, I've finally added a post to my Star Wars blog. Prepare to be dazzled by the geekiness of it all! It's a long post in which I attempt (though I admit I started to run out of steam by the end, and felt the constant pressure from blog monkey to post something asap, not sure why since I think he hates Star Wars!). Anyway, I'm probably not saying anything (yet anyway) that's not obvious but if you're a fan(atic) like me and perhaps were born and raised on the original trilogy maybe you'll find it somewhat entertaining. Or not. Anyway, check it out if you want. I'll understand if you don't.


Tuesday, February 14, 2006

"Ipperwash Inquiry Inconveniences Mike Harris"

Yeah, today's the day that up here (or over here, depending on your reading location) in Canada a former provincial Premier (and all round dickhead) Mike 'Golf Course' Harris goes on trial to testify to his involvement in the death of the Ipperwash protester Dudley George. For those of you who haven't heard of this story, check it out, and feel free to smack your head against something hard in confusion, frustration and shame. No way at all to justify it. A senseless death that the families hope can be investigated with enough integrity and sense of justice to prevent anything like it from happening again.

There are accusations that the former Premier had ordered the police to "get those fucking indians out of the park" a mere hours before a police sniper took out George (and then fellow officers beat band councilor Slippery George to within an inch of his life for trying to talk the police into stopping the raid). (and for more on the police' real attitude towards the events, check out this site and this site and wonder why the punishment hasn't been more severe). (and check out the "backgrounds" on the right side of some of these pages for more on the story in general).

But you know, regardless of whether Harris used these exact hate-filled words, he did order the police to raid the park, he was not enough of a good and responsible leader to bring this to a peaceful settlement, so he is ultimately responsible whether he likes it or not. The blood is on his hands and on the hands of everyone from him on down the chain of command to the officer who fired the gun (who got a mere two years community service btw!!! WTF!!!????) So, in this sense, it was a legion of people that killed George, not even a one on one shoot out (though he didn't himself have a gun), and it was our votes that killed him, it was our society that killed him for not electing better, visionary leaders and holy crap we have to take responsibility for it. Our leaders should know that with power comes responsibility, intelligence and accountability. In every situation where the use of force is an option they should know that if it isn't damn clear that is was required that they will pay a price for exercising it without due cause. Otherwise, those who seek office or employment in policing will always be free to be tempted to abuse it. The use of force against citizenry is not a light issue and we need to demand that there are steeper penalties for its abuse. Okay, I'm straying, but this is way bigger than one dumb cop going all SWAT sniper macho on some unsuspecting peacenik. This is a clear example of how the same racist, euro-supremacist values that leveled this country into a parking lot waiting to happen are alive and kicking today and channeling the psychopathology of that long dead wacko Pedro de Alvarado (see Ronald Wright's Stolen Continents for his take on this supposed military genius of the Spanish invasion of the Americas).

Anyway, here's to hoping justice prevails and that someday soon, though not soon enough, we come to terms with our deadly stupidity and ignorance. (oh yeah, and that Mike Harris goes to prison for the rest of his life with no chance of parole or golf!)

Friday, February 10, 2006

Tag! I'm it!

A reason to do a new post! Seems I've been tagged which after some questions to the "tagger" I've come to understand means I'm to create a post answering some questions/make some lists and then tag four other bloggers/blogs in an attempt to get them to do the same. So here it goes!

-paper boy
-carpenter's helper
-library assistant
-film/video editor

- Badlands
- Star Wars
- Blue Velvet
- Incredibles

-Owen Sound, Ontario
-Peterborough, Ontario
-Vancouver, British Columbia
-Montreal, Quebec

- Daily Show
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer
- Colbert Report
- Curb Your Enthusiasm

- Cote D'Azur
- Maritimes (New Brunswick, PEI, Nova Scotia/Cape Breton)
- Oregon/Northern California Coasts
- Vancouver Island

-serving tray

but if this means "food combinations", then I'd go with
- Shish Taouk
- Anything Indian
- Vietnamese grilled chicken and vermicelli in a bowl
- A good club sandwich, hold the bacon, with a mountain of fresh cut fries (from L'Avenue, Montreal)

- Legends Action Figures
- Guardian
- Blog Monkey's blog (cause he'll hit me if I don't!)
- Rhodian Attic (and I'm not just saying that cause you tagged me)

- Oregon Coast, on my bike, camping near the dunes just outside of Florence
- Summer, cottage, Lake Nipissing near North Bay, Ontario
- Menton, France
- 1977

- the Procrastin8r
- Blog Monkey (yeah, I know he's already been tagged but maybe this will put pressure on I don't gots many friends...sniff, sniff)
- Darth Serious (does it count if you tag your alter ego?)
- Cafe DA

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Thanks Blog Monkey!

Got me a new banner to match me new blog colours! All thanks to the blog monkey who has adopted me like a captive ape would a stray kitten, or in this case, abandoned poultry. He is a skillful beast! Whipped this up in minutes! But it wasn't exactly a favour. With him there's always strings attached. Sick, slimy strings, twisted to ensnare and make you do his god awful biddings!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Just a Book Plug

Not really much of a post, just wanted to recommend a good book.

I'm about 20 pages from finishing it and it has been quite an experience.

It's called A Scientific Romance by Ronald Wright (a novel). It is part hommage to H.G. Wells (he also makes a brief appearance in the book) and part fictional rendition of current thought on where our species is going and what could happen even only a short time in the future. Wright has also written other non-fiction books about the rise and fall of civilizations and the history of the colonization of the Americas (I've also read his A Short History of Progress, also very good, highly readable). This one is basically about the end of our current civilization and its aftermath. Kind of depressing I suppose, though not sure that it will end that way (I can't really see a light at the end of the tunnel however). It isn't as dark as say "1984" but just as shocking (in some ways because it seems more plausible and less metaphoric). A reminder why the presence and experience of works of fiction and the imagination are important and necessary to contextualise the works of non-fiction and the bare facts.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Since we're admitting to vices

I've been inspired by a recent post by Kathleen over at Rhodian Attic to post photos of my own little vice/collection. I too collect books, not as many as she and I collect comic books and until recently DVDs got the better of my wallet. Then, for some odd reason, I went apeshit for, well, you can see for yourselves I suppose....

Not sure if and how it can end as there are many "new releases" coming out in the next year!

No name calling or finger pointing please. Only civil inquiries seeking facts will be responded to.

Oh yeah, and these are older photos, the collection is about a third bigger now! If I hadn't spent all my money on these and had bought myself a digital camera instead, well, I suppose I could be taking pictures of empty shelves, but what's the fun in that? (And how d'ya like that twisted, self-serving logic?)


Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Commuting Thoughts 2 : The Anti-Life Movement

The problem with the state of things in a nutshell is that the major religious forces that are antithetical to life have dominated our cultural development for well over two millennia. Their influence has seeped even into aspects that do not claim to have direct ties to religion (consumerism, capitalism, technological advancement, science and that harder to define general sense of life by the common 'man'). These types of behaviour, perception and thinking have been made possible and bloomed, for the most part, out of the manure of organized, Judeo-Christian religious forces. We may feel that the yoke of superstitious religion has been lifted from the shoulders of the world to some degree, but we see that organized religion is still blatantly pushing to influence the direction of the world even today (the USA's religious rights foray into politics and the media, the Islamic world's pushing back with terrorism against, from their side of the fence, these godless heathen). I would argue that the more insidious forces at work in the culture of consumerism, of urban being-ness, of virtual transgressions of the material and biological world through the use of electronic information technologies, are actually more frightening for being taken as inevitable, natural, scientifically supported, or what have you, and being more difficult to question for they seem to have no obvious underlying philosophy or dogma supporting them (though they do). It may seem inevitable or in our nature to undertake the destruction of our environment, that our appetites are merely too ravenous and our vision too nearsighted as a species, but I think it is more likely that the heavy influence the philosophy of these religions have had on the ages is still being felt and has not been analyzed enough to allow us to see it for what it truly is and how it has operated on our lives and our perception of the world/self dynamic.

The trick of time, our lifespan, our difficulty in maintaining a perspective on a larger picture may make what I'm saying seem ridiculous. It may seem that the path we are currently taking is the good one, the better one, a path that seems to have been leading us out of darkness and into some kind of superior status vis a vis our world and ourselves, fighting and resisting the darker angels of our nature (and in part it is, and we could also very well stumble upon a better way of living from out of this mess, but not without some deep and radical intentional or accidental alterations of the foundations of our perspective). But what I am trying to argue is that there have been and still are intense anti-life forces at the heart of our cultural achievements. While we may feel a sense of advancement, achievement, and progress, this current state of things is likely but a blip on our evolutionary radar and may very well do us in. In short, the experiment of the anti-life movement in human culture hasn't been going on all that long given the overall timeline of our existence, we have little to compare it to (though many smaller examples of the collapse of civilizations can be looked at for parallels: Mesopotamia, Rome, Aztec culture). Unless we analyze it for what it is and resist and change it we can expect the experiment to end badly.

The anti-life movement began at a time when humanity probably felt a burning need to try to see hope beyond the immediate, material circumstances of existence. To deny this time and place and the life it supports as merely a test, a game, an illusion, a preliminary state of being before the eternal and virtual existence of the soul in heaven, is to allow us to treat the world as expendable, as ours for the using, as, ultimately, not the be all and end all of existence. By embracing this view, it ignores the human to need to connect to the world and the mystery of existence without recourse to an afterlife. It is shortsighted, selfish and banking on a myth that can't be proven (but which can easily be cast into doubt by the very fact that history and archaeology shows us that the Bible, the Torah and the Koran are all just examples of cultural documents humanity has conjured up out of their imagination and that they are relative to the culture that produces them and therefore not inevitably true).