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Michael Hardner

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Everything posted by Michael Hardner

  1. You're right, it's not charity but keep in mind I was addressing your point #1. I don't know. Why don't we discuss and figure that out. School breakfast for example. There are a lot of bad parents out there. I suspect that they are the children of bad parents. If a school breakfast program can help these kids, then maybe it will break the cycle. Giving drugs/alcohol to transients. If these people are utterly addicted to substances and have thrown their lives away, what's the best way to deal with it ? They're going to get their substances from criminals anyway, maybe it makes sense for them to be under supervision while they're doing it. It's not a question of ideology, as much as it is common sense. I'd even be willing to crunch numbers to determine how valuable these things might be. Like I said: let's discuss and agree to shed ideology in favour of what works. Politics today is, unfortunately, more about arguing stereotypes rather than being pragmatic. I agree that such a blunt approach doesn't help anybody. In fact, it might be time for people to consider taking some powers away from the government in order to foster innovation. I'm left-of-center politically, but the government's stasis in many areas needs to be addressed somehow.
  2. Charity is very much a part of our culture and it grows out of sympathy for those who are lacking. This is at the base of Christianity as well. That's not that you should feel guilty for what you have, but there's nothing wrong with wanting to share your wealth. It's kharmic, or if you prefer: win-win. Every western economy includes some measure of wealth distribution and social assistance. It might do well for those on the opposite side as the NDP if they told us what limits they would like to put on distribution. Often when these things are discussed it seems like it's an all-or-nothing option. What do you mean here specifically ?
  3. I agree. No real conscientious objector would agree to fight in the first place.
  4. But if alcohol and tobacco become too expensive, you can still give them up entirely. Not really an option with kids. I think this question needs to be answered by the country as a whole: BubberMiley has done a good job of explaining the rationale here. I think that discussion needs to happen nationally for this and every social program. It's not enough to play on the heartstrings of the electorate. People need to know that there's a rational reason behind them.
  5. Harper could conceivably push this off by agreeing to mothball the current plan, and study it in the future while continuing to roll out his plan.
  6. I'm not a CPC supporter, but I do take heart in the fact that many Conservatives seem to be holding the new government up to the same scrutiny they had for the Liberals. Thank you for that.
  7. I think the Supreme Court's decision will stand and that the best the government do is reclassify same sex marriage as 'civil union' or something similar. That's assuming that the vote passes, which it very well might not. Another question is now much the current PM really wants the vote to pass. He's always emphasized that he wants a free vote, and if he gets a free vote that doesn't pass he can move forward and put the whole issue behind him. That would mean one less 'scare tactic' issue that the Liberals could use against him in urban areas.
  8. Actually Hugo I said that you []I]described[/i] that scenario not that you believed it. I believe in fighting straw with straw. We're discussing where society should draw the lines of personal accountability, so that people will remain strong and independent, and take responsibility for their actions yet have assistance when bad fortune falls upon them. Sweal has pointed out how these external forces can work for you as well as against you. It seems kharmic somehow that the lucky should help the unlucky, but you would disagree I"m sure.
  9. What Sweal said... Just going on instinct, which parties would appeal to 'caring nurturers' and which to 'rugged individualists' ? This should be no great surprise. If the Tories had any political sense (They haven't been any good at this game since Preston Manning left.) then they would make changes in this area.
  10. I can understand wanting to believe in the mystic, the irrational, and unprovable. I can understand wanting to believe in an afterlife, even with no evidence that it exists. But I can't understand the situation where people DEMAND that their irrational beliefs be taught as fact. The inability to admit a plurality of views is immature, but how can a state institutionalize this type of immaturity ? Kansas - the state of denial.
  11. Dan: I agree. Sweal: The same people who elected Mike Harris.
  12. Daniel: Whoever supports the Cons government won't allow drastic health care cuts, or the canning of Kyoto. SS Marriage is a done deal. Daycare never got to the drawing board, and everything else that you predicted could well happen. As a left-of-centre poster (in the context of this board, this nation, this time etc) my advice to other LOC posters is to get yourself used to the idea that the next government will be conservative.
  13. I agree, Unpolarized. I'm convinced that many people voted last time to give Martin one single chance to impress them. The scandal details are bad enough, but Martin hasn't done much else in the way of positives to gain our confidence. Remember the promise to fix healthcare for a generation ? What has been done ? I'm hoping a Conservative-NDP majority (as strange as that sounds) can work out some kind of economically frugal middle road that keeps the social safety net intact. The Liberals have been in power for how long now ? 12 years ? There has been very little will to enact the big changes that have been going on elsewhere in the world. Also, IMTrudeau said Harper should do less to please the religious minority that supports him. When the same sex legislation passes, it will be easy for Harper to walk away from that issue. The Liberals won't have anything left to stick on him with regards to intolerance etc. EDITED TO ADD: Harper should wait for the inquiry to finish, which I understand is one month. I doubt the people will change their minds by then.
  14. This is more pure politics, which is distressing considering the number of problems in the US that are not receiving due attention these days.
  15. Hugo: The real world lies somewhere between the one that you describe (we are all completely independent and absolutely responsible for our actions and in control of factors that govern our lives) and the one you scorn (no responsibility, factors out of our control). Like the wave and particle theory of light, you need a "masses" and "individual" theory of people.
  16. No, I wasn't. I think I went on 4 protest marches. One for the poor. One for university funding. One against US policy in Latin America. One against S Africa.
  17. That's kind of a cute oversimplification, but it gives one thought. As for left vs right, they're so close in Canada that it defies belief that there could be this much divisiveness. My ex-coworker had just emmigrated from Ukrane to Canada, got his citizenship and was confused about who to vote for in the election: "They're the same" he said.
  18. I don't think this rationale should be overused. The fact is that those who demand labour hold more and more of an advantage these days. You could eliminate much labour legislation with this rationale. The fact is that people are willing to put up with a lot in order to keep a job. Legislation should exist to counteract the natural order of things, which is sometimes called the race to the bottom.
  19. Sweal: I'm not sure, but looking at your list makes me think you missed the 'last 50 years' part. Quite right. I was marching against US policy in the 1980s, when things were really bad. I think that they've softened up a lot since then, yet it seems that people are more outraged than ever.
  20. I disagree. I think that Ontarians gave the Liberals one "LAST" chance last time, switching their votes at the last minute. I think Harper will be the next PM.
  21. Newfie is right on this, IMO. And... So it's understandable to take the big signing bonus THEN declare yourself an objector ? I think it's understandable in the same way misrepresentation and fraud are understandable, but not acceptable. And it certainly doesn't match the standard of prisoners of conscience.
  22. Sorry, Caesar but this isn't the same thing. This is someone who enlisted, not a prisoner of conscience. I would agree with you if the US still had the draft but they do not. A person who signs a contract should be bound to completing it, IMO.
  23. I think the problem with managing our government is the same as we've seen in many businesses... that is, they're managed (ie. elected) based on gut-feel rather than numbers. This can only work for so long until the business fails. Management by numbers is what is required. The first problem we need to tackle is an agreed upon channel of discussion as to what our goals should be, then a means to measure these goals and evaluate how our governments are doing. Such an idea is practical and reasonable, but it is in no one's best interest to do so, only in the interests of the whole. This is why it hasn't been done. I submit that web boards such as these could elect objective members to nominate clear and measurable metrics for government, then simply see how each government does against the metrics. That would act against much of the lying that goes into politics, though not all of it. The more I talk to reasonable and informed conservatives on these boards, the more I respect their views and want to see them get some satisfaction in the political arena. When it comes down to it (and I know some will find this preposterous) I don't think centre-lefts and centre-rights are that far apart today. Both sides agree on the general need for social programs, but disagree about the approach.
  24. Not bad, but I disagree with some of it... I don't think that's true of common law, and especially not if you have kids to support. You admit that males get 'ruined' ? And... how many families have more than 3 kids ? I'll grant you that there are a lot of poor single-mother families, but how many of them have a wealthy male that's refusing to pay up ? Not sure...
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