Thursday, August 20, 2015

Thursday Post

Always something going on...

Greek Prime Minister Alex Tspiras resigned after yet another bailout for the broke country:

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras resigned Thursday and called early elections, hoping for a new, stronger mandate to implement a three-year bailout program that sparked a rebellion within his radical left party.

In a televised address to the nation, Tsipras said his government had got the best deal possible for the country when it agreed to an 86 billion euro ($95 billion) bailout from other eurozone countries.

The rescue was all that kept Greece from a disastrous exit from the euro but came with strict terms to cut spending and raise taxes — the very measures Tsipras had pledged to fight when he won elections in January.

His U-turn in accepting the demands by the country's creditors led to outrage among hardliners in his Syriza party, with dozens voting against him during the bailout's ratification in parliament last week, which was approved thanks to support from opposition parties.

Tsipras has insisted that although he disagrees with the conditions of the bailout terms, he had no choice but to accept and implement them to keep Greece in the euro, which the vast majority of Greeks want.

After firing on South Korea, North Korea is aghast that its southern cousins would retaliate:

North Korea has fired a shell across the border into South Korea, prompting Seoul to respond with artillery fire, according to reports.

The North is believed to have been aiming at a loudspeaker in a border town that has been blaring anti-Pyongyang broadcasts recently, South Korean media said.

In response, South Korea fired tens of 155mm artillery rounds at the location where the shell came from, the country's defence ministry said.

The South's military is currently on its highest state of alert.

North Korea has threatened military action if South Korea continues with the broadcasts, calling for them to be stopped within 48 hours.
President Park, offer a bounty on one man: that fatso in Pyongyang. After that beached whale is harpooned and dragged through the centre of town, things will be a lot easier.

A girl who murdered her family and whose name can't be revealed will soon be released to society:

A woman who was 12 when she helped murder her family because they disapproved of her relationship with an older man is preparing to live a "real life in the real world" when her sentence ends next spring.

The woman, who is now 21 but can't be named under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, was convicted along with her then boyfriend of killing her mother, father and eight-year-old brother in the family's Medicine Hat home in April 2006.

Her 10-year youth sentence expires May 7, 2016, and she continued on her path toward freedom Thursday when a judge removed her weekday curfew. Her curfew on weekends was removed at an earlier court date.

(Sidebar: curfew? Well, that will show her.)

We don't have a justice system. We have a legal system.

What? Healthcare isn't free in Canada?

Canadians may like to believe they have access to free health care, but a new report squashes those illusions.

An average Canadian family pays $12,000 per year for health care insurance and those costs have nearly doubled in the last decade, according to a Fraser Institute report.

“Contrary to the way we find (health care insurance) is characterized, it isn’t free,” Bacchus Barua, co-author of the study said.

The think-tank found that health care insurance costs for all Canadians increased by 48.5 per cent to an estimated $8,205 from $5,527 in the last decade.

Health care insurance costs are also rising 1.6 times faster than the average Canadian income, the report says, leading Barua to have an issue with the system.

“When health care insurance is growing faster than income, it’s an indication you can’t sustain it,” Barua said.
Does anyone wonder how this inadequate marvel of medical bureaucracy works?

Tax dollars. That's how.

And when you throw an annual pile of cash at civil servants, damn, if they're not going to be inefficient about things.

Oh, dear. This must be embarrassing:

In Winnipeg on Wednesday morning Trudeau unveiled a plan to allow workers in industries that fall under federal jurisdiction to ask for flexible work hours. He says this will help with work life balance.

I don’t know many people opposed to the idea of flex time or helping employees achieve work life balance but what Trudeau is proposing is simply putting into law that you can ask, not that you will get.

Here’s how part of the exchange went down as reporters asked Trudeau about the new “right” he wants to grant workers:
REPORTER: So if I’m a night shift worker, under your plan…if a Liberal government is elected….if I’m working night shifts, I can request to my employer that i don’t want to work a night shift any more, they have to make that change?
TRUDEAU: No, this plan is about respecting the fact that the way Canadians work is changing and the way that Canadians live is changing. And by putting in a formal process where an employee can request a shift in their hours or shift in their work conditions of their employer, and the employer has to respond to that.
So you can ask and your employer can respond by saying yes or no. Let me fill you in on something. That already exists. Any employee can ask for flex time, I know workers in countless industries that have it. Many people do not get to have this arrangement though because of the type of job they have.
And everyone is worried about Harper.

Average Russians feel the pinch as Putin ignores sanctions levelled against him because of his incursions into Ukraine:

Russians are experiencing the first sustained decline in living standards in the 15 years since President Vladimir Putin came to power. The ruble has fallen by half against the dollar, driven by the plunging price of oil, the lifeblood of Russia’s economy. As a result, prices of imported goods have shot up, making tea, instant coffee, children’s clothes and back-to-school backpacks suddenly, jarringly expensive.

Making matters worse are the retaliatory bans that Russia placed on food imports after the United States and the European Union imposed sanctions for its actions in Ukraine, a policy that took a turn for the weird this month when the government destroyed thousands of tons of what it said were illegally imported foodstuffs including cheese and peaches.

You know what to do about him, друзья.

Also: today marks the anniversary of when the Soviet crushed the Prague Spring (yet another one of communism's many atrocities):

And now, where's my cat? Oh! Here he is!

In the photo, a black and white cat blankly looks out a window while perched next to a Missing Cat poster of said blank-looking cat in the identical pose, taped to the window.
(Photo: Instagram/@brian_m_cassidy)

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