Tuesday, August 30, 2016

For A Tuesday

Lots to talk about....

After landing in his favourite country, Trudeau basks in the former glories of his dad:

If the view in China is that Justin Trudeau is walking in his father’s footsteps, the Prime Minister is embracing it, telling business-people Tuesday that he’s looking to see how the “next generation of Trudeau could have an impact.”

The first event of a marathon, week-long visit to China made it abundantly clear that Pierre Trudeau, who established diplomatic relations with the country in 1970, is still a beloved figure here.

Oh, I'm sure:

(A) The future Canadian prime minister Pierre Trudeau came in 1960 and co-wrote a starry-eyed book, Two Innocents in China, which rejected reports of famine.

(B) By this time, Mao Tse Tung's Great Leap Forward, which forced millions of Chinese into communes where their physical and non-mechanised labour failed to produce bumper crops, inched toward forty-five million deaths (later numbers stand at seventy million).

The famine was so bad that even Canada imported 2.34 million tonnes of grain. 280,000 tonnes of wheat went to the former Soviet Union and was then sent back to China, giving the appearance of Soviet, not Western, aid.

Rather like the UN giving money to the much-maligned Assad but I digress.

Trudeau is one who enjoys getting his ego massaged.

How is "genocide-denier" for the old self-esteem, Justin?

Inflation is the increase in the price of goods and services. The price for one thing is too high for the goods and/or services delivered. 

Trudeau's father increased federal spending during his various turns as prime minister. He increased the public sector. The national debt grew.

Just like his son.

The national deficit now stands at one billion dollars.

The average Canadian's share of the national debt is over seventeen thousand dollars.

When inflation (and those pesky carbon taxes and other hidden taxes) finally hits, Canadians will be paying more for goods and services that are not worth it.

Everything old is new again:

Efforts to cut real interest rates by raising inflation are unlikely to prove more successful now than in the 1970s, and for the same reason: they depend upon people not noticing what is going on. Even if you could hold short-term rates down, long-term rates would surely rise to compensate for the expected higher inflation. Worse, so, before long, would wages. Once inflation expectations take root, they’re very hard to dig out.

You knew what you were doing, Liberal voters.

This wouldn't be the first time the Liberal government didn't care about a Canadian in Iran:

A professor from Montreal who has been imprisoned in Iran since June was recently hospitalized, is barely conscious and can hardly walk or talk, according to family. 

Homa Hoodfar, an anthropologist at Concordia University, is being kept in solitary confinement nearly three months after her arrest in Tehran on June 6 while on a personal and research visit to Iran, said her niece, Amanda Ghahremani. 

Hoodfar's family says Iranian authorities have refused regular visits by her lawyer and have tried to dismiss him. During his one visit in July, he was forbidden to discuss her case and has been denied all access to her legal file, the family said. They were recently informed Hoodfar is in hospital. 

"It has become clear that the authorities are not prioritizing her health and do not intend to respect Homa's due process rights under Iranian law," Ghahremani said.

"We're incredibly scared."

Justin Trudeau's brother, Alexandre, has helped Iran with its propaganda regarding its expanding nuclear program.

Carry on.


For the record, Tima Kurdi did not apply to sponsor her brother, Abdullah, who was living safely in Turkey and was a human smuggler.

That makes this article:

... either based on an incredible mistake or written to be deliberately deceptive.

I'm leaning towards the second one.

John Kerry would prefer that terrorist attacks would not receive any press coverage. They're terribly upsetting:

Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday during an appearance in Bangladesh that the media could “do us all a service” if they didn’t cover terrorism “quite as much.”

Why John Kerry should be told to cram it:

The Associate Press reported that 72 mass graves had been discovered in the most extensive survey carried of its kind. The known number of the dead buried in the unmarked pits, and known only to a handful of witnesses and IS itself, is believed to number between 5,200 to 15,000.

The highest number of graves have been found in Iraq's Sinjar province where IS carried out what has been described as a genocide against Yazidis. Sinjar Mountain itself is reportedly dotted with mass graves, six of them containing more than 100 people.

One witness to the atrocities in Sinjar, who peered through binoculars as IS carried out its extermination, told the AP about handcuffed men from nearby villages being shot and then buried by a waiting bulldozer.

The burials lasted for six days as the man, who has not been identified, watched the extremists fill one grave after another with his friends and relatives.

There are believed to be more mass graves in the surrounding area but they lie between IS and Iraqi lines. Because the no man's land has not yet been secured, families who remain behind have been left unable to retrieve their dead.

Terrorists will continue attacking people whether the popular press - which has censors itself - reports on it or not.

There are no safe spaces in terrorist-controlled regions.

Yet another poll released from Abacus Data says outright that the Liberals aren't just on top, they are expanding their voters base.

Imagine that!

Abacus Data's chairman is Bruce Anderson, the father of Kate Purchase, director of communications for Trudeau.

Carry on.


Almost a quarter of releases (28%) were sponsored by a non-media sponsor while another 23% were sponsored by the media (e.g. CTV, Global, La press). While we do not know for certain if the media paid for the poll results, we are assuming that the media did not attach its credibility to a poll that someone else paid for.  Of the 253 releases in the past three months, 32% of them did not have an identified sponsor. This means that we cannot be certain who covered the cost of these polls.

After relieving humans of their editorial work, Facebook automatically trends false stories:

Facebook announced Friday that humans would no longer write descriptions for its Trending topics list, handing over even more responsibility to the already-powerful algorithm. But just days after the policy change, Facebook’s algorithm chose a very bad, factually incorrect headline to explain to its news-hungry users why Megyn Kelly was trending.

How embarrassing.

Kim Jong-Un reportedly has had two officials executed for disobeying him:

North Korea publicly executed two officials in early August for disobeying leader Kim Jong Un, a South Korean newspaper reported on Tuesday, in what would be the latest in a series of high-level purges under the young leader's rule, if confirmed.

Kim took power in 2011 after the death of his father, Kim Jong Il, and his consolidation of power has included purges and executions of top officials, South Korean officials have said.

Citing an unidentified source familiar with the North, the JoongAng Ilbo daily said former agriculture minister Hwang Min and Ri Yong Jin, a senior official at the education ministry, had been executed.
The report could not be independently verified, and South Korea's Unification Ministry, which handles North Korea-related matters, did not have immediate comment.

Some previous media reports of executions and purges in the reclusive state later proved inaccurate.
The report of the executions comes soon after the South said North Korea's deputy ambassador in London had defected and arrived in the South with his family, dealing an embarrassing blow to Kim's regime.
There has been a rash of high-profile defections as of late. If this report is true, it further proves Kim's mental and national instability.

Japan believes an underground ice wall may staunch the flow of radioactive groundwater into the Fukushima reactor building:

Built by the central government at a cost of 35 billion yen, or some $320 million, the ice wall is intended to seal off the reactor buildings within a vast, rectangular-shaped barrier of man-made permafrost. If it becomes successfully operational as soon as this autumn, the frozen soil will act as a dam to block new groundwater from entering the buildings. It will also help stop leaks of radioactive water into the nearby Pacific Ocean, which have decreased significantly since the calamity but may be continuing.

You know what you're doing, Japan.

And now, dogs really do understand us:

The New York Times reports that Hungarian scientists recently trained a group of 13 extremely patient dogs to lie completely still in a MRI machine while the researchers measured brain activity. Scientists then played a voice recording of a trainer saying positive phrases (like “good boy”) in a positive tone of voice, positive phrases in a neutral tone of voice, neutral words (like “however”) in a positive tone of voice, and neutral words in a neutral tone of voice.

They found that the reward centers in the canine volunteers’ brains lit up significantly more when they heard positive phrases in a positive tone. Positive phrases in a neutral tone and neutral phrases in a positive tone didn’t have nearly the same impact. That is, dogs interpreted tone and vocabulary together. (Researchers note that in cases where dogs respond to owners saying meaningless or insulting words in a positive tone of voice, the dogs are likely responding to body language.)
We are being watched.


A: Chang, Jung, and Jon Halliday. Mao: The Unknown Story. New York: Knopf, 2005.

B:  Dikötter, Frank. Mao's Great Famine: The History of China's Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-1962. New York: Walker, 2010.

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