Monday, April 18, 2016

For A Monday

Because Monday...

Quantumgate -  it's a real thing, unlike PM Trulander's knowledge about... well... anything:

But not everyone was seemingly blown away by Trudeau’s grasp of complex quantum mechanics.

Canadian blogger and conservative political commentator J.J. McCullough thought the entire moment seemed bit to good to be true and took to his website to let his opinion about the matter be known.

In a post titled “The North Koreanificatoin of Canadian political reporting,” McCullough harshly criticizes the Canadian media’s framing of the entire exchange, and writes that through closer analysis it’s clear Trudeau presented the question about quantum computing to reporters himself:

“So, to summarize, the PM went to a place and learned about a thing. During the speech that followed, he excitedly suggested he wanted to talk about the thing he just learned. A reporter was disinterested in playing along, and tried to ask a more relevant question, but Trudeau ignored him and launched into what was clearly a pre-prepared treatise on the thing.”

The post goes on to accuse the Canadian media of not only presenting Trudeau’s answer without the proper context, but also suggests that the Canadian press is actively shaping its reporting to help cast the Liberal government in a positive light as well.

Trudeau was asked about ISIS, not what was on a cue card he read a few hours ago.

I've heard Kim Jong-Un is also some sort of genius. At least that is what people who are afraid of him say.

Once again, the popular press was caught both fawning over an obviously clueless head of state and obfuscating the truth, like a newspaper pretending that it never wrote a damning article on schoolchildren choking other schoolchildren.

Thirty percent of Syrian migrants cannot read or write:

Syrian families learning English in Nova Scotia may face bigger challenges than previously expected, as some adults must learn to read and write for the first time. 

All the newcomers were assessed against Canadian language benchmarks upon arrival. Last week, Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia received the results of those assessments, said Nabiha Atallah, the manager of communications and outreach. 

"Sixty per cent of our new Syrian adults are pre-benchmark — they don't have Level 1," she said. "They would be starting from scratch." 

The assessment also found 30 per cent of the Syrian adults do not read or write in their first language of Arabic.

"Teaching English to people who don't read and write in their first language requires another approach altogether," Atallah said. "It is harder. It takes different strategies."

How, exactly, will they boost the economy?

They are, after all, the CRA:

Senior enforcement officials at the Canada Revenue Agency attended several posh receptions offering free alcohol and hors d'oeuvres paid for by groups and firms in the tax industry, typically on the sidelines of major national conferences.

Canadian children already had tax benefits:

The federal government has introduced its promised enhancement to Ottawa's child benefit program —a move it says will bring tax relief for more families and help boost economic growth.


The Liberals pumped almost $700,000 into four B.C. ridings in the last election, dethroning two Conservative incumbents and one New Democrat, and losing to the NDP in the hotly contested riding of Vancouver East, election spending data show.

The money to help four Liberals get elected included $225,415 to help Pam Goldsmith-Jones defeat Conservative John Weston in the B.C. riding of West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country, and $213,638 in Surrey-Newton where Sukh Dhaliwal defeated NDP MP Jinny Sims.

Those amounts, the highest to any riding the central party helped financially in the last election, were targeted in areas where the Liberals expected to be in tight races in a region all three parties considered a key campaign battleground.

In case one wondered how far they would go to win.

A group hopes that teaching students about genocide will ward off future genocides:

There's a very personal driving force behind Heidi Berger's quest to get provinces to introduce compulsory genocide education for high-school students.

Her late mother, Ann Kazimirski, was a Holocaust survivor who championed the cause until her death 10 years ago.

"Her mission in her life became going to schools all over North America and telling her story and talking about genocide," Berger said. "She realized children of survivors have to carry on the story."

Berger is starting with her home province of Quebec and says the teachings take on even more importance against the backdrop of several Quebec youths having travelled to the Middle East in recent years to join jihadist groups.

"It's very topical: we're talking about 17-year-olds and 16-year-olds being lured into ISIS," said Berger. "The question is, if these students were educated about genocide, that would certainly help to a large degree."
Um, no.

If human life at any stage is given zero worth, whether it is because the Koran says so or because basic morality is reduced to mere subjectivity, why would yet another class do any good? Whatever challenges made against such pervasive ideologies are ritually ignored. North Koreans are murdered all the time, as are Yazidis, Christians, homosexuals, the elderly and the disabled. What has the dreadful experience of the Holocaust taught anyone?

Nothing, it seems.


A trove of ISIS personnel records obtained by NBC News has now been analyzed by experts at West Point, who say it's the largest and "most significant" document cache of its kind, providing new insight into the terror group's grand ambitions and diverse recruits.  ...

The applicants came from all job sectors. Listed occupations included beekeeper, perfume salesman, airline steward, Saudi intelligence worker, soldier in the Tunisian army. One reported he was in "counter-narcotics," another that he was a hashish dealer. "May God forgive him and us!" that file added. There was someone who worked at a Starbucks in London, and another who boasted of being a mixed-martial arts trainer with gold medals to his name. 

Overall, though, the fighters were more likely to have worked in low-skilled jobs. Only 104 had high-skilled or white-collar positions. There were 700 laborers, roughly 10 times the number of teachers, IT employees, or those in the military or police. But the vast majority were employed before they joined: Only 255 said they were jobless. Another big group had yet to enter the labor force: 656 students.

And I thought giving these guys jobs would stop the raping and the killing.

She'll be found not guilty:

Employees who discovered the remains of six infants in a storage locker say they found foul-smelling bags and pails filled with something "wet and mushy."

The employees were the first witnesses Monday in the trial of Andrea Giesbrecht, 42, who is facing concealment charges before a judge alone.

Ryan Pearson told court he and several others went into the Winnipeg U-Haul locker to take inventory on Oct. 20, 2014, because the bill hadn't been paid. It wasn't long before he said they felt "something was weird in there."

He said he opened a few containers and were overwhelmed by a horrible stench.

"From that point, I got some gloves because it didn't seem right," Pearson told provincial court Judge Murray Thompson. "Everything had kind of a sticky feeling.

"At that point, your mind is going 100 places so we called police."

The discovery left him shaken, Pearson said, with "many, many nights of not sleeping."

Patrol Sgt. Cory Ford, the first officer on the scene, told court he recognized the smell when the locker was opened.

"It was the smell of decay," he said.

Ford testified that he examined the containers one by one to determine if further investigation was needed. There were bags stashed inside pails and duffle bags inside plastic totes.

"It was wet. From the smell, I felt sure it was some sort of decomposition."

Ford said he picked up a white plastic bag and shone a flashlight on it.

"I was able to see the limb of what looked like a baby and a small head with hair on it."

Giesbrecht, who had also gone by the name Andrea Naworynski, was arrested shortly afterwards. 
She has been out on bail for almost a year.

With her dyed red hair pulled back into a bun, Giesbrecht appeared to listen intently, but expressionless, as the trial heard the graphic testimony.

Her lawyer, Greg Brodsky, said the trial is likely to be lengthy and will hinge on whether the babies were born alive. Despite numerous pre-trial hearings, it's not clear who the infants were, how old they were or how long their remains were stored.

"The issue will not be the facts in this case," Brodsky told court. "The issue will be what interpretation to be drawn from those facts."

(Sidebar: yes, facts are rather pesky.)

And now, a starving population but a swanky subway system:

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