Monday, June 27, 2016

Canada Week: The Metal Woodwind Instrument

How is everyone's Shark Week going?

Your summer reading.

Only one in four Canadians support NAFTA:

Only a quarter of Canadians polled say NAFTA has benefitted Canada– roughly the same portion, at 26 per cent, as those who say the deal has hurt the country, according to a new public opinion poll from the Angus Reid Institute. ...

The Canadian government says it has unequivocally benefited from NAFTA. Its foreign affairs website shows total Canada-US merchandise trade more than doubled between 1993 and 2014, while trade with Mexico jumped over sevenfold. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told CNBC in March that “trade is ultimately good, not just for our countries, but for our businesses and our workers” and said reopening NAFTA, a Trump promise, was not a “real issue.”

But Canadians have a mixed view, with 34 per cent saying the deal should be renegotiated, according to the poll. The most likely to favour renegotiation are Canadians 55 and older, the poll states, with 46 per cent of men and 44 per cent of women in that age range choosing this option. Young Canadians, meanwhile, are largely unsure.

Kurl said there was a high level of ambivalence or lack of awareness of NAFTA and its complexities. “Canadians are not particularly engaged,” she said. “Is this a condemnation of the trade deal, or is this kind of a shrugging of shoulders?”

The poll also asked Canadians what their priorities were for the summit. The issue of NAFTA itself and other trade issues topped the list at 20 per cent, with security issues winning another 20 per cent. Climate change was next at 17 per cent, while immigration and border controls were down the list at only nine per cent.

However, when the poll whether Canadians supported removing their country’s visa on Mexicans, respondents were divided. Just over a third of Canadians, 36 per cent, support lifting the visa, while 37 opposed the idea and another 27 per cent were unsure.

If Canadians don't like NAFTA, they are not going to like removing visa restrictions, which the Canadian government has promised to do.

Sarah Palin criticised Obamacare's panel for treating or not treating elderly patients and was ultimately proven right. Her commentary on appointed (not elected) officials in Brussels in a world that still hasn't defunded the UN isn't that outlandish:

On Friday, the former Alaskan governor and 2008 vice presidential candidate congratulated the “smart Brits,” likening the June referendum to the Declaration of Independence. After all, as she noted in a Facebook post, the citizens of the U.K. may have avoided nothing less than the end of the world.

Palin, a Donald Trump supporter, applauded the Leave voters for outfoxing “globalists” who would bring about an “apocalyptic One World Government,” she wrote on Facebook. That is because the European Union, in her words, is a “One World Government mini-me.”

Or Duterte can just wait for China to finish off the Philippines:

The Philippine president-elect said Monday he would aggressively promote artificial birth control in the country even at the risk of getting in a fight with the dominant Catholic church, which staunchly opposes the use of contraceptives.

Yeah, whatever, tough guy.

Also - we can't all be Antonin Scalia:

On Monday, the Supreme Court struck down a set of Texas restrictions that shuttered half the state’s abortion providers, and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg used her concurring opinion to blast a key argument for the state’s tighter regulations — that terminating a pregnancy in a clinic is dangerous.

What a moron.

How the hell did someone like her get to sit on the Supreme Court?

Oh, heavens to Betsy:

As one researcher noted, “[m]any state health departments are able to obtain only incomplete data from abortion providers, and in some states, only 40 to 50 percent of abortions are reported.”

Likewise, the count of maternal deaths from abortion is based on death certificates, but medical studies have documented the inaccuracy of death certificates. As researchers have noted, abortions “cannot be linked to other sources of health data such as birth or death certificates, thereby making precise calculation of mortality rates or subsequent birth outcomes impossible.”

Consequently, the assertion that “abortion is safer than childbirth” is completely untenable. It’s based on a comparison of the official published abortion mortality rate (approximately 0.6 deaths per 100,000 abortions) and the official published childbirth mortality rate (approximately 6 deaths per 100,000 births). This comparison is completely misleading. A former director of the CDC, Dr. Julie Gerberding, acknowledged that the two rates are measured differently and should not be compared.
In contrast, most states link birth and death certificates, which means that childbirth deaths are more accurately monitored. The count of abortion deaths only includes direct deaths, while the count of childbirth deaths includes direct and indirect deaths (like homicides and suicides while pregnant), thereby inflating the childbirth death count.

The national system for counting childbirth deaths is thorough and long-standing, while there is no national system for counting abortion deaths based on legally mandated reporting. A handful of undiscovered abortion deaths in any state would affect the abortion morality rate significantly. In June 2011, for example, the Chicago Tribune reported that six abortion deaths and 4,000 injuries in Illinois abortion clinics had never been reported to the Illinois Department of Health.

In contrast to the United States’ dysfunctional system, there is a growing body of international, peer-reviewed medical studies from dozens of countries finding long-term increased risks to women from abortion. Maternal mortality studies from Scandinavian countries with superior abortion record keeping collection and reporting systems have found a higher rate of abortion mortality than childbirth mortality. Similarly, recent studies from Ireland, Mexican states and Chile — which prohibit abortion — have found positive women’s health trends despite the legal prohibition of abortion, including a study from Mexico published in February in the British Medical Journal Open.

Alright- who did the pollsters ask?

Almost eight years after electing a black president, vast majorities of blacks and Hispanics think President Barack Obama at least tried to make race relations in the United States better, according to a poll released Monday.

Stick a fork in the US. It's done.

A story that disappeared as quickly as a case of bullying and a disappeared newspaper article did:

One of the primary things I was taught in journalism school is to never assume you know the truth about any given incident unless you witnessed it with your own eyes. But police are not denying that a sexual assault occurred, nor are they denying that the trio of males aged 14, 10, and 7 hailing from Sudan and Iraq were involved in filming an incident wherein an allegedly mentally disabled five-year-old white girl was found naked and covered in urine. ...

The most telling phrase in the entire sickening brouhaha comes from the landlord who evicted the families of the alleged perps from the apartment complex in question:
[The] events of recent days have focused our collective attention on the complexities of living in a culturally diverse society.
This, then, is the essence of multiculturalism: A trio of underage presumed refugees from Islamic countries strip a five-year-old white girl naked and film it while peeing in her mouth. In response, ideologues from all sides warp the narrative to suit their emotional needs.
If distorting or inventing facts around an actual incident is disgusting, what would one call sweeping the entire incident under the rug and then projecting a paper-thin facade of political multiculturalism?

And now, happy accidents:

In 2009, Mas Subramanian, a materials science professor at Oregon State University, was running experiments designed to create new materials for electronics. During those tests, he and his team hit on a more unexpected creation in the form of a vibrant new color. Called YInMn blue, the pigment will finally be available to artists and manufacturers later this year through an agreement with the Ohio-based Shepherd Color Company ...

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