Staff Infection


As quarantine restrictions ease across North America, restaurant owners leapt on reopening despite regional restrictions on capacity and seating distance. On May 19th British Columbia allowed restaurants to open at 50% capacity. Enthusiastic public response filled patios to the brim, patrons wait in long lines hoping for a seat at normality’s table. Overnight, a palpable transformation played out across the city. Akin to getting out of jail, an inch of freedom gave way to miles of opportunity. I can so I will took root.

Yesterday, youngest son returned to work at a trendy Yaletown eatery.  Normal need not apply, patrons are splurging on bottle service, tipping with wild abandon and filling available seats until closing bell. His observations aren’t unique, permission to sit at restaurant tables amounts to viral imperative for familiar social surroundings.

Rejoice, sit with friends, drink draft beer, take comfort in health regulations requiring service staff to wear face masks. So great, right? Not so fast. What about the rights of service staff? Patrons don’t have to wear face masks, they’re not touching plates, glasses or cutlery of others. They don’t languish in a steamy dish pit, sweltering behind mandatory face masks as scalding steam covers them in particulate moisture. No big deal, what’s a handful of service staff compared to optics of economic revitalization?

Actually it’s a very big deal and frankly I’m appalled.

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Incel Terrorism


Incel stands for involuntarily celibate, hash-tag/moniker of a profoundly misogynistic online community united by feelings of sexual rejection. Long simmering Incel hatred of women took root years ago in shadowy forums and alt-right chatter hubs. Amid a plethora of mass shootings and violent crime the Incel movement went largely unnoticed until now. Today, Canada elevated Incel aggression to criminal act of terrorism.

In February 2020 a 17 year old machete wielding male entered a Toronto massage parlour, killing Ashley Noelle Arzaga, seriously wounding two more women. Ontario police arrested the suspect on site, initially charging him with first degree murder and two counts of attempted murder. Further investigation brought in the RCMP Integrated National Security Enforcement Team when evidence indicated the attack was motivated by Incel ideology. On May 19, 2020 RCMP updated charges to, “murder – terrorist activity.”

Incels favour “Chad” and “Stacey” as namesakes for hate and envy.  Chad men are attractive but intellectually flawed, Stacy are women who reject incels for Chads. Don’t scoff, this is deeply messed up psychology.  Serious enough for Canada to lay terrorism charges against a young man attacking women at a Toronto massage parlour.

Incel motivated violence against women isn’t new. The link below illustrates numerous atrocities directed at women by awkward inductees of this murky online movement. What’s new, dare I say historical is Canada’s interpretation of the offence.

Ours is not a Chad and Stacy world. Ours is a online world where Chad and Stacy loathing involuntary celibates bloom in basement solidarity. Right, wrong or knee jerk Canadian perspective, as of May 19, 2020 intel motivated violence is an act of terrorism in Canada.

What is the ‘incel’ movement that police allege inspired a terrorist attack at Toronto massage parlour?

Liberty In America


This article by Shannon Gormley appears in the June 2020 issue of Maclean’s magazine. It begins –

“On a rainy day in late April, in a once-storied democracy now ruled by a certifiable madman who gives senior positions to his simpleton children because he wants to, who boasts of grabbing women by their private parts because he wants to, who uses the highest office in the land to enrich his gaudy hotels and let off his thuggish friends because he wants to, who threatens the press corps and Mexican people and his political opponents and his ex-wife because he wants to, who slathers gold paint on his MDF furniture and orange cover-up on his face because he wants to, who tells lie after lie after lie for no other reason than just because he wants to, during a global pandemic when the same madman’s dazed inaction has resulted in more people dying from the virus in his country than any other in the world – on that day, an armed militia drove up to the Michigan state government building, stormed the visitor’s gallery and stalked the balcony, assault guns brandished as legislators sat below.”

“Their demand: that they too be able to do what they want, no matter what others want. What they want is, they claim, liberty.”

“Liberty: In their view, it is the freedom to threaten others; in reality, it is they who threaten freedom. They want to do what they want to do and they want to do it whenever they want to do it, however they want to do it, and here is the key: It is not that they want to do what they want to do in spite of the fact others may get hurt, they want to do what they want to do because others may get hurt. That they are scaring people is no accident. It is the point. It is what they want. They imagine liberty is being taken from them and must instead be taken from others. To maintain their own parched little plot of freedom, they rain fear down upon everyone else.”

“And so, in and around the Michigan statehouse, some have waved rifles because they believe they have the God-given right to subject lawmakers to reasonable fear of getting their heads blown off; some have carried the Confederate flag because they believe they have the God-given right to subject Black people to the reasonable fear of being lynched.

Some have threatened to incarcerate a female legislator because they believe they have a God-given right to subject women to reasonable fear of all manner of retribution. And all have swarmed public spaces in a mass because they believe they have a God-given right to subject other people, their own societies, their own country and beyond, to a reasonable fear of a deadly virus.”

I’ve quoted snippets from a thought provoking read few Americans are likely to ponder. Gormley’s article deserves consideration. Full article linked below – what does liberty mean to you?

https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/world/what-liberty-really-means-to-gun-wielding-lockdown-protestors-in-america/ar-BB13W1sZ?ocid=spartanntp

a group of people standing in front of a building: An armed group entered the Michigan State Capitol building to protest the stay-at-home orders, on April 30, 2020 (Seth Herald/Reuters)

 

Panic Porn


Bill Maher nailed it with New Rule: Panic Porn. In a nutshell – if news media doesn’t tone down apocalyptic coverage of COVID-19 Trump will seize inevitable easing of restrictions as consequence of his great management during pandemic times. Take five minutes to ponder panic porn…..

Pandemic App


Yesterday Google and Apple announced partnership details pertaining to development of a COVID-19 tracking app. When launched, the opt-in platform would use Bluetooth to keep tabs on your whereabouts and interaction with personal contacts. Ostensibly to send email alerts if anyone you’ve had close contact with tests positive for COVID-19. The fine print explains –

“It works a bit like exchanging contact information with everyone you meet, except everything is designed to be anonymous and automatic. Instead of contact info, your smartphone will periodically exchange anonymized tracing keys with nearby devices. Both devices maintain a list of the keys they’ve collected on a cloud server, and when one person reports an infection, they have the option of sending an alert to people they’ve recently been in contact with. That alert will share information for what those people should do next.” From https://www.vox.com/recode/2020/4/10/21216675/apple-google-covid-coronavirus-contact-tracing-app

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In a perfect pandemic world, unprecedented solidarity between competing tech giants might be considered admirable. Trouble being, ours is anything but a perfect world and  red flags flap in the wind. Second phase of the Google/Apple partnership involves contact tracking functionality built in to Android and Apple phone operating systems. Excuse me? I urge you to read the link above.

Blocked


Americans in particular are quick to froth constitutional freedom of speech. Trouble being it’s become increasingly evident they only want to hear themselves or their miniscule gang of devotees speak. In the past week I’ve had comments deleted, access blocked and content reported over a dozen times. My transgression? To dare contradict, however polite or reasonable the manifesto of opinionated closed minds. Geez, what was I thinking?

It’s alarming, consider the magnitude of free speech silenced by the click of a block icon.  Reasonable attempts to initiate dialogue muzzled by knee jerk block bravado. Typically I’m chastised for ignorance. Ridiculed, mocked, sworn at or warned to mind my own business before the block hammer strikes. WTF? It’s fascinating. These are the same people who spew constitutional freedom of speech. Silly me, free speech is their right, anyone taking exception will be blocked.

Not once have I blocked a site. Last week I reported a particularly venomous wing-nut for promoting home remedy coronavirus cures, a first in 8 years of blogging. In my mind deleting comments, censoring content, including dialogue out of context excluding verbal abuse prompting such dialogue and aggressively blocking those who dare take issue is cowardly. Blocking doesn’t prove anything other than spineless ignorance. We can ignore content, mark it as spam, read it for perspective or choose not to follow the author, but the moment we block it is the moment we surrender the right to free speech.

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Tesla Cybertruck


Ponder Cybertruck – electric powered truck unveiled this week by Tesla bobble-head Elon Musk. Take a moment, rattled brains are temporary. Once you realize this isn’t a Mad Max or Starship Trooper movie prop, it’s okay to laugh out loud. No, that isn’t a wheelchair ramp – Tesla thoughtfully created Cyberquad, companion ATV for  environmentally aware off-road electric vehicle enthusiasts. WTF!!!!

Clearly Tesla took a collective acid trip, nothing else explains the absurdity of Cybertruck.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_Cybertruck

You Stole My Purse


It wouldn’t be a wedding without a sloppy drunk woman accusing us of stealing her purse. We take it in stride, every situation presents unique challenges. Tonight’s drunk accused staff of stealing her purse while she went to the bathroom. “I left it on table 6, a black designer bag with $300 cash and all my ID. I was gone 2 minutes, one of you stole it” she slurred. Dead set on accusation, sloppy drunk unleashed a torrent of “you’d better fucking find it”.  We didn’t touch your purse!

Sensing sloppy drunk’s looming meltdown, boyfriend trumpets “this is fucking serious, which one of you stole her purse? Hand it over now!” Emboldened by her partner’s bravado, sloppy drunk parrots “fucking serious”.  Hysteria escalates, she’s wailing incoherent protestation. Rage pulsates from boyfriend’s throbbing temples, “she was gone 2 minutes, who the fuck stole her purse?”

Instead of laughing or calling security to escort the lovely couple out, I ask a server to check the bathroom. Sure enough, “stolen” purse rested where sloppy drunk left it – top of toilet paper dispenser inside a bathroom stall.

Did they apologize? Nope! They accused “thief” of planting it and stormed out. Sigh. So ends another day at the office.

Black and White Justice


Today we learned Devin Sloane, second parent sentenced in U.S. college admission scandal got 4 months in jail, followed by 2 years probation, $95,000 fine and 500 hours community service. Sloane paid $250,000 to get his son into University of Southern California as a water polo recruit. In closing arguments Sloane’s lawyer pleaded for leniency, arguing Sloane was a good man lured into crime by admissions scam mastermind Rick Singer. Judge Indira Talwani asked – “Why does it matter, in terms of my sentencing, why someone else invited him to do this crime?” Talwani said the defense was putting people into two categories – good people who make mistakes, bad people who get caught. “I don’t sentence good people or bad people, I sentence people” Talwani said.

Prosecutors were seeking a year in jail. Prior to sentencing Assistant U.S. District Attorney Eric Rosen said Sloane’s crime was “far more egregious” than that of actress Felicity Huffman who paid $15,000 to rig her daughter’s entrance exam scores. Huffman was sentenced to two weeks prison time, a fine and 200 hours community service. Rosen argued Huffman took immediate responsibility, whereas Sloane made a show of blaming others. In contrast to Huffman’s two week incarceration slap on the wrist, I suppose four months for Sloane is justice served. Right?

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/executive-gets-4-months-for-bribing-sons-way-into-usc/2019/09/24/be8f9ce0-df28-11e9-be7f-4cc85017c36f_story.html?nid=menu_nav_accessibilityforscreenreader&outputType=accessibility

Not so fast, seems we’ve forgotten U.S. justice sentences people by colour. In 2011 Tanya McDowell, a homeless woman from Bridgeport, Connecticut was sentenced to five years in prison for enrolling her then five year old son in a school district they didn’t reside in. Living out of her van and in homeless shelters, McDowell used her babysitter’s address to enroll her son in elementary school. She was arrested, charged with first degree larceny for “stolen” education and sentenced to five years.

a group of people posing for the camera

© The Stamford Advocate, Keelin Daly/AP

Thump your patriotic heart America, but know you’ll never be great. Are you pleased with yourself? Content with black and white justice? Bothered by the fact a 2016 Washington Post investigation revealed white school districts received $23 billion more federal education funding than black school districts?

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/report-finds-23-billion-racial-funding-gap-for-schools/2019/02/25/d562b704-3915-11e9-a06c-3ec8ed509d15_story.html

Who am I kidding? Homeless black women have no right to seek better education for their children – lock them up, throw away the key. American justice knows what’s best, understands rich white citizens grease the wheels. “I don’t sentence good people or bad people, I sentence people” – is that how you sleep at night America? What a nightmare.

False Flag


Okay so you haven’t heard of the McFiles Network, few have, it boasts a paltry 12.7 thousand followers. Trouble is there are thousands of sites just like it. We ask ourselves how Trump prevailed in 2016, convince ourselves it couldn’t possibly happen again. News flash – it can and will if we don’t stop clucking sureties that conservative America knows better than to repeat itself.

Last week ultra right wing conspiracy theorists Chris McDonald and Mark Taylor broadcast blustering agreement that Hurricane Dorian is a “false flag” created by the deep state to distract Americans from the fact former FBI Director James Comey along with un-named high level members of Obama’s administration are destined to serve time in federal prison.

“When you get these stories and all of a sudden—boom—you’ve got an almost Category 6 storm, it does not take a genius to figure out it’s called a distraction and it’s called a false flag.”

“Absolutely, brother,” agreed Taylor. “These guys are going to be indicted, they are going to go to jail, they are going to go to prison so it’s coming, guys, we just have to be patient. But it’s not by coincidence that the hordes of chaos have been released because they know their time is short.”

Chris McDonald and Mark Taylor Agreed That Hurricane Dorian Is a ‘False Flag’

McDonald and Taylor support Trump, as do countless like minded right wing bulldozers. Unless America suspends belief, acknowledges mindsets of  formidable conservative brick walls and vows to extract voter outrage from every last citizen – Trump will stain the White House in 2020.

When in need of a stinging reminder, go to Right Wing Watch linked below –

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