Impeachment For Dummies


 

For fellow Canadians, globally curious onlookers, brick and mortar Americans – ponder impeachment for dummies. A no nonsense impeachment flowchart courtesy Buzzfeed.

Image credits: Melina Mara / the Washington Post via Getty Images (Pelosi); Drew Angerer / Getty Images (Trump); Mandel Ngan / AFP / Getty Images (McConnell); Stephanie Keith / Getty Images (Trump); Caroline Brehman / CQ-Roll Call, Inc. via Getty Images (Pence)

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/benking/confused-by-the-impeachment-process-this-flowchart-should?utm_source=quora&utm_medium=referral

Bulletproof Backpack


Remember when back to school shopping was simple? New clothes, notebooks, pencil crayons, lunchbox? Nervous excitement born of what to wear the first day, not consideration of random gun violence. Fear not – bleeding heart liberals can stop whining about gun reform, bulletproof backpacks are the back to school must.

Last May, Louisiana voted overwhelmingly to amend State law banning students from wearing body armor. How progressive! Little Dick and Jane are encouraged to wear backpack armor at school and all school sanctioned events. What’s this? Poor little Jane’s parents can only afford the $100 sheet of backpack insert, hope Jane is shot in the back by a handgun because her insert won’t stop rifle bullets. What self respecting mass shooter packs a pistol? Stay strong little Jane, when bullets fly use Dick as a shield, his parents had $300 for Dick’s top of the line rifle deflecting armor.

https://www.americas1stfreedom.org/articles/2018/5/23/louisiana-legislature-approves-bulletproof-backpacks/

Ponder absurdity of this image – by what stretch of imagination does aesthetically pleasing placement of a shiny red apple make it okay to flog $300 armor for back to school?

How about this from https://www.americanrifleman.org/articles/2014/3/31/bulletsafe-bulletproof-backpack-panels/ – NRA froth extraordinaire….

“In fact kids have a higher chance of being hurt playing any sport, even golf, than from a firearm, thanks in no small part to the numerous safety campaigns of NRA such as Eddie Eagle. That doesn’t however change the ingenious of this idea. Parents purchase all manners of equipment to keep kids safe – gates, monitors, socket plugs – so why shouldn’t we consider an item that could protect them in the unlikely event of an attack”.

https://bulletblocker.com/bullet-proof-backpack-shield.html

Don’t mistake mention of Louisiana for isolated demand of bulletproof backpacks, the epidemic flourishes across America. My dismay reads like futuristic script of a 60’s science fiction novel, a cautionary tale chronicling collapse of social order leading to civil war, annihilation of a once dominant civilization.

Wake up people, nothing about bulletproof backpacks is okay, Children deserve better.

Moon Hoax Not


Shout out to https://nobodysreadingme.wordpress.com/2019/07/12/how-its-nearly-fifty-years-since-apollo-11/ for prompting this ponder. As nobodysreadingme points out – you can’t do a cover-up on this scale. A casual observation beyond reproach, he’s right – you can’t do a cover-up on this scale.

July 21, 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 commander Neil Armstrong’s momentous first step on the Moon. Fifty years increasingly over shadowed by conspiracy wing-nuts. News flash – you can’t do a cover-up on this scale! For those inclined to gobble tabloid sawdust, persons swayed by internet jibber-jabber, people parroting fake Moon landing nonsense – snap out of it! You can’t do a cover-up on this scale.

What will it take to convince fake Moon landing conspiracy theorists otherwise? This video? Point by patient point analysis at the link below? Who am I kidding?

https://www.history.com/news/moon-landing-fake-conspiracy-theories

How about this? You can’t do a cover-up on this scale!

Apex


If apex means “top”, the world’s apex predator might just be a tiny spider. Meet Euophrys Omnisuperstes, ( Latin for “standing above everything” ) the Himalayan Jumping Spider,  highest known permanent resident life form on Earth. This quarter inch long, eight eyed, claw footed jumping spider capable of leaping distances 50 times its body length, thrives at elevations of 22,000 feet above sea level. Himalayan Jumping Spiders inhabit a realm so improbable, their only food source is insects carried by the wind.

Meet the Spider that Lives On Top of the World: the Himalayan Jumping Spider

For perspective, Mt. Everest south base camp in Nepal sits at 17,598 feet. At this elevation oxygen levels are 50% that of sea level. Worlds above the tree line, far beyond the domain of Snow Leopards, high above clusters of Nepalese Snub Nose Monkeys https://www.newscientist.com/article/2101954-secrets-of-how-primates-can-live-at-extreme-altitude-revealed/ whose only sustenance is lichen or rare thermal pool prisoners of high altitude hot springs, the Bailey’s snake https://reptiles.fandom.com/wiki/Thermophis_baileyi – tiny eight eyed jumping spiders wait for lunch to blow in on the wind. Why spider, why?

Make no mistake, spiders rule. Sure cockroaches survive underwater for half an hour, monarch butterflies migrate thousands of miles to a miniscule patch of Mexican forest, but it’s the spider who stands above everything.

Water, No Ice


Last night a client asked for water, no ice. Seems she disapproved of Pellegrino served at the bar. No problem, I’ll be right back. Oh, you want to come with me? Have it your way. Following me to the kitchen, she watched as I turned the faucet to run cold water. Her jaw went slack, unable to support quivering lips on a face now drained of colour.  Horrified, she mustered “you only have tap water?”. “Excuse me” I replied, handing her a glass of water, no ice. “I can’t drink that” she sputtered, “I need bottled water”. Propriety screamed “easy now, be cool, you’re a professional”. Rather than snap “are you thirsty or not?”,  politest admonishment ahead of “what’s wrong with you”, I smiled, shrugged and replied “there’s bottled juice at the bar”.

Water, no ice lady’s delusion isn’t unique. Convenience, accessibility, marketing and collective apathy sustain bottled water dependency. Why no ice, because it’s made from tap water?

Society resides in a plastic bubble. Insulated from common sense by convenience, consumers take the path of least resistance. Bolstered by marketed delusions, society dwells on plastic bottles and deems the contents crystal clear. Water, no ice lady doesn’t know 93% of all bottled water contains micro-plastics. Nor is she aware of Canadian law as it pertains to drinking water.

Canadian tap water is regulated by Health Canada which sets guidelines for potentially harmful contamination. Municipal water sources are tested constantly to assure quality. Bottled water is another matter – legally defined as “food”, it falls under jurisdiction of the Food and Drugs Act. Translation – “Aside from arsenic, lead and coliform bacteria, the act does not set limits on specific contaminants but says simply that food products cannot contain “poisonous or harmful substances” and must be prepared in sanitary conditions.” Bottom line, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) inspects water bottling plants – on average once every 3 years. Bottled water producers claim strict adherence to testing practices, legally they’re not obliged to make results public.

With the exception of “spring” or “mineral” water printed on labels, water producers aren’t required to reveal their water source. The Canadian Bottled Water Association claims less than 8% of water bottles in Canada contain municipal water sources. In the United States roughly 45% flows straight from the tap.

“In the U.S., Nestlé’s Poland Spring water, which is not sold in Canada, was the subject of a class-action lawsuit that alleged the company was mislabelling the water as “naturally purified” spring water from “pristine and protected sources… deep in the woods of Maine,” when it fact it was groundwater being drawn from man-made wells, some of which, the lawsuit alleged, were at risk of contamination.” – Kazi Stastna, CBC News

Ponder the link below –

https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/bottle-vs-tap-7-things-to-know-about-drinking-water-1.2774182

Water, no ice lady is a cautionary tale. Bottled water is unregulated, unethical, unhealthy and undeniably unscrupulous.

In plastic bottle news – earlier this week Justin Trudeau held a press conference to announce a nation wide ban on single use plastics by 2020. All good until a reporter asked what Trudeau’s family did to reduce plastics. Ponder his cringe worthy response –

 

 

 

Trinity Revoked


Trinity Western is an accredited Canadian university located in Langley British Columbia. Born in 1962 as a Christian college operated by the Evangelical Free Church of Canada, Trinity became a university in 1985.

Trinity Western University students must sign a covenant abstaining from sexual intimacy 'that violates the sacredness of marriage between a man and a woman.'

Trinity Western has strict policies regarding sexual conduct. Prospective students must sign a “promise” not to engage in same sex shenanigans. Sexual intimacy violating sacredness of marriage between a man and woman = guaranteed expulsion. A decade ago, B.C.’s College of Teachers refused to recognize Trinity teaching graduates – the Supreme Court ruled their concerns unfounded. The court weighed religious and equality rights, concluding no evidence existed to substantiate concerns of teacher discrimination. Lacking evidence of teacher misconduct – Trinity was free to school anti-gay teachers.

Trinity fell off radars until a December 2013 announcement – B.C. government approval of Trinity Law School.

“The Degree Quality Assessment Board reviewed Trinity Western University’s proposed law degree and found that it met the degree program quality assessment criteria for private and out-of-province public institutions,” he said.

“Further, the review by the Federation of Law Societies confirmed that graduates of the proposed law program could meet the national standards to practice law.”

Not so fast Trinity – same sex marriage is legal in Canada. Hold your horses Advanced Education Minister Amrik Virk – British Columbia Lawyers have a message for you. In June of this year, a rare gathering of B.C. Lawyers voted 3,210-968 in favor of rejecting accreditation of Trinity law. Law Society rules stipulate if results of the vote aren’t implemented in a year, they can force a binding referendum.

Today Education Minister Virk withdrew his consent.

“Based on the current situation, I have decided to revoke my approval of the proposed law school at Trinity Western University,” he said in an emailed statement. “This means the university cannot enrol any students in its proposed program.”

“The current uncertainty over the status of the regulatory body approval means prospective graduates may not be able to be called to the bar, or practise law, in British Columbia. This is a significant change to the context in which I made my original decision,” he added.

Trinity Western president Bob Kuhn expressed disappointment.

“It is difficult to conceive of a justifiable basis for the minister to have revoked his approval of the school of law program,” Kuhn said in a press release.

Difficult to conceive of a justifiable basis? Holy crap. All I can say is Canada dodged a bullet. Sleep well Canada, the prospect of Lawyers encouraged to discriminate against law abiding citizens of our nation has been averted.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/trinity-western-law-school-b-c-advanced-education-minister-revokes-approval-1.2870640

 

 

Facts


I take comfort in facts; irrefutable, set in stone, proven beyond a shadow of doubt,snippets of information used to define our world. The Oxford Dictionary defines fact as “a thing that is known or proved to be true”,  so far so good, right? Not so fast – fact missed the memo on truth.

I know for a fact we can’t pin point the exact age of our universe. Science says 13.8 billion years, give or take a millennium or two. We have no way of ever assigning “fact” to age, we can however say for a fact, the universe is billions of years old, science has proven this to be true. According to fundamentalist Christians the world is 6427 years old. The link below gives a timeline of their reasoning – for those requiring “proof”, a search on yahoo resulted in “best answer” rating for a response to the question “how old is the earth according to the bible?” – “the Bible doesn’t specify how old earth is but the lunar landing proved only 6000 years of dust had collected on the moon”. Yikes; that’s one hell of a fact.

http://bridavis.chickenfactory.net/timeline.htm

How about the “fact” Christopher Columbus discovered America – he never set foot on the continent, his 1492 landing was in the Caribbean – I suppose “close enough” makes for good historical “fact”. Leif Erickson found Newfoundland long before Columbus sailed the ocean blue – that’s a fact. Columbus Day based on historical fiction; truth bent so long as to become “fact”.

We need to take a long hard look at what we consider fact. Considering the source, burden of proof and context go a long way towards definitive truth. It isn’t good enough to say “I heard it on TV” or “the Bible says…” We need to understand that history , more precisely “historical accounts”, are often nothing more than one side of the story. We need to stop and ponder the difference between belief and fact. One year has 365 days, 1+1=2; facts beyond a shadow of a doubt – foundations on which we build our view of the world.

Using “fact” in the context of biblical or historical accounts, takes fact from the realm of truth, to that of speculation. History is not without bias; historical accounts often written from verbal folklore, or as a one sided “white washing” of the facts.  Alexander Graham Bell is credited with inventing the telephone – dead wrong, it was Antonio Meucci, a penniless Italian immigrant who couldn’t afford to patent his invention.Biblical “fact” based on a book neither proven or known to be true. We can say for a fact the bible claims Jesus performed 37 miracles, we can’t claim they are proven or true. “Facts” are solidified only when proven to be true.

http://www.zakkeith.com/articles,blogs,forums/who-invented-the-telephone.htm

Statistics aren’t “fact”; statistics are nothing more than a snap shot of one tiny demographic. Statistical “fact” based on responses from a few thousand hand picked respondents.  Editorial news stories aren’t fact, simply the opinion of a network or newscaster. We’re bombarded with “facts” based on nothing more than opinion or public relations firms presenting one side of the story. Fact has little to do with proven truth – fact and truth parted ways some time ago.

I can say for a fact that NOAA scientists reported November 2013 to be the warmest November since records began in 1880. November was also the 37th consecutive year, and 345th consecutive month where global averages of ocean and surface temperatures increased. Compelling facts but not irrefutable proof of global warming according to websites like thewatchers. Fact is open to interpretation – a nasty backlash since parting with truth.

http://thewatchers.adorraeli.com/2013/07/07/global-warming-debunked-nasa-report-verifies-carbon-dioxide-actually-cools-atmosphere/

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/

We all need to ponder the importance of getting our facts straight. Basing our statements of fact on the Bible, history textbooks, worse still, opinionated media or websites, makes us look silly. Bible stories or Scientology beliefs that humans are inhabited by the souls of an alien race from planet Xenu – bear no resemblance to fact; the only true fact being many people believe these stories. Teaching for a fact that Mesopotamia was the cradle of civilization, ignoring Gobekli Tepe, Varna, Puma Punku simply because we lack reasonable explanation, doesn’t change the fact these places blow our mainstream historical timeline out of the water.

We owe it to ourselves; not only remind ourselves of “facts” true meaning, but to expand our children’s minds with unbiased truth – science might not be able to explain, it doesn’t negate scientific truth. Ponder a world if we based our lives on factual truth rather than biblical references, historical hearsay, media opinion or statistical slants. Stop and think how different it would be if our lives were governed by fact based on truth instead of opinion. How simple life would be if a fact was a fact – so deal with it. A world where believe in your God ,or not , was irrelevant when educating our children. A place where “this is what we can back up with archaeological evidence”  or “this confounding truth defies explanation, yet is no less real”. A world where kids grew up with all the “facts”, were allowed to imagine and wonder, form their own ideas and taught to recognize the difference between fact and hogwash.

Fact needs to high tail it back to truth; our world needs to focus on what is proven to be true rather than how we believe, or would like to think the universe is ordered.