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Everything posted by udawg

  1. In follow-up, I hope that our poor performance, while I would never wish it upon our dedicated athletes, will open some eyes in the government as to the horrendous state of athletic programs in this country that many in the public have recognized for years. It's high time that we put these programs back on track and pay them the respect they deserve. Despite having many world-class and potential athletes in this country, ever since former Canadian swim coach Don Talbot was fired in 1988 for refusing to make a political selection to the national team, Canadian sport has been on a slide. Talbot, btw, then went on to coach for Australia, building their world-dominating team over the course of 12 years. That could have been us. I only hope that this [lack of] performance will be the shove into the deep end without a flutter board that forces us to take our athletes seriously.
  2. Honestly, I am surprised. Then again, I guess I would be jealous too if I were a middle-aged overweight computer geek who never learned to throw a ball. Sorry, I'm a little upset at the complete and utter lack of support for our countries athletes, best in the world or not. Sport is one of the greatest things that humans can engage in. It fosters a spirit of healthy competition, while providing a way for people, young and old alike, to stay fit and have fun. It all sounds cliche-ed, but it's true. It is vitally important that we provide young people with healthy role models and goals to strive for. Maybe Canadians CAN exercise in the street, but a lot more would be likely to do it if they see their hero breaking records at the Olympics. And what's wrong with having nationalist feelings? As long as we're taking it out on the track and in the pool, rather than the battlefield, it's all good. The fact that the US and USSR were able to compete in sports and the other races during the Cold War are what prevented it from going hot. It provided an outlet without all the blood and radiation. The sportsmanship that Olympic athletes demonstrate should be a lesson to us all. When the Australian girl (Jodie Henry I think) broke the world record in the 100m freestyle earlier today, the former record holder swam over and gave her a hug and congratulated her. We can all learn from that. Giving a little extra money to our athletes so that they can pursue their goals and even show off our country a little bit is more important than I can explain with my limited vocabulary. There is nothing wrong with trying to be the best at something; it ensures that we continue moving forward, and nowhere are personal improvement, teamwork, and role-model ideals more obvious than in sports. We should be proud to help our athletes succeed.
  3. I find occasionally that editorials introduce me to a new point of view that hadn't occured to me. Maybe that's because I'm sometimes too lazy to think of it myself Anyway, on the ads, I do enjoy some of them, some of them I ignore, but I think I would mind them even less if more ads meant lower costs for viewers, rather than simply higher profits for the networks. Of course, ads are why we get any TV over the airwaves, but hardly anyone actually limits themselves to bunny-ears at this point. Ads are just a way to increase profits yet again, but I don't mind them that much. They give me time to grab more beer and chips
  4. *sigh* But sadly, some of us are still idealistic enough, or at least naively patriotic enough, that we (I) still do shop at the Canadian-owned store when given the opportunity. In the same way that I will watch an Oilers game, even though I hate the Oilers, over a Red Wings game, just out of blind patriotism. Maybe I'm just living in the past in this new age of globalism, but I like to think that we Canadians can at least stick up for each other when we're shopping, even if our government can't protect us abroad.
  5. While I do not doubt the authenticity of the potential threat to the Olympics, I cannot think of any group that would benefit from attacking such a high-profile, MULTINATIONAL event. Yes, you can attack just the American section of the Athletes' Village, but the fact remains that it's an international event, and terrorist attacks are nothing if not political. So I actually doubt an attack will be made.
  6. Everybody's looking too deep into it. Whether the US won or not depends on your view of what winning means. If, in this case, it means that the losing side changes political systems and conforms to the winner's ideals and systems, since that is essentially what the Cold War was about (keeping it simple), then the US won... or at least, is currently winning. If you decide the winner based on who is the more powerful nation at the end of the conflict, then the US (by most yardmarkers) won again. If you want to complicate it a bit, and say the Cold War was about having the superior nation in terms of athletics, technology, and economy, it's a split decision. The USSR won the athletics, won most of the major technological races (space), but lost the economic race. (theirs collapsed first) As I originally said, it depends what you want to define a win by.
  7. Homosexuality is now considered genetic. Know what else is genetic? Murderous tendencies. Actually, if you think about it, anything that isn't the result of environmental differences, is based on genetics. The hard part comes when we try to define the limits of "normal" genetic differences. For a while, left-handed people were considered somewhat "lesser" people. Homosexuality was wrong for the greatest part of human history. Virtually every mental disorder still has its origin in genetics. Is it a defect? Or simply another variation? Even the most terrible mental impairment could be considered simply a genetic variance. I'm not going to ask where we draw the line, because everybody on this board will have a different opinion. I simply ask everyone to consider. Anything that was different from birth, about anyone, is natural. Whether it was meant to be like that, or whether a fairly large percentage of the human population has at least some minor "mistakes" in their genetic makeup, is what the issue is really about.
  8. There is a certain amount of warped truth to that. It is the type of policies that GWB stands for that many fanatics around the world dislike, and are the main cause for their terrorist groups and actions. In theory, a man like Bush getting in office and carrying out actions around the world could spur more anti-Americans into terrorism.
  9. UN Security Council Resolution 1154 involved the situation between Iraq and Kuwait, imposed a deadline, and sanctioned military force to remove Iraqi forces from Kuwait if the deadline for self-removal was not met. Do a Google search, there are more sources for this than I can list. I used the CBC news Flashback site.
  10. While I have no doubt that these men will be persecuted when they return to the US, they broke laws of their country and deserve it. I don't know or care if they're cowards or not, they had a legal obligation to fight for their country as soon as they signed up. They have to accept the decisions that their nation makes for them.
  11. But how does the average healthcare user know if it's serious enough? You haven't answered how you're going to prevent people from NOT going to the ER because they're afraid of a fine. A fine is the same thing as a user fee, only the moment the user gets billed differs.
  12. Interesting, I had the converse view during the election, that it was Herle that nearly lost the election for PM PM, rather than the other way around. I don't know that much about him either, other than what I saw on an interview with Craig Oliver and later with a CBC reporter.
  13. While I am a strong advocate of a more capable military, I have had to ask myself, what would we use it for? The obvious answers, defence and peacekeeping, are simple. Except that, considering the world situation, the primary mission, defence (I hope we all agree that defending our borders is the primary mission), is not an issue. There is no force on the planet that would consider invading Canada, all things considered. Then to peacekeeping. Obviously this is something that means a lot to Canadians, but it also has very different requirements than simply defending our borders. If we were to design a military for the sole purpose of defending ourselves, a strong Navy is the key. Our entire nation is surrounded by water; any invading force has to pass through our territorial waters. On the other hand, if we were to design the military to be a solely peacekeeping force, then the infantry takes precedence. The one thing that both plans require, however, is a capable Air Force. Rather than relying on other nations to transport our ground equipment around the world to trouble spots, we need to be able to do it ourselves. Rather than relying on the US's Star Wars program and NORAD, we need to have our own air defence mechanisms at home. The starting place for any modern military has to be a capable air force. What we need to decide is which role we believe is currently more necessary: defending our borders, or peacekeeping. If we are secure enough in our beliefs of invulnernability at home, then peacekeeping, and the infantry for that, should be built up second (after the Air Force). Naturally, we cannot ignore the Navy, because their heavy transport and support capabilities are also necessary, but we simply wouldn't need the same size of force as we would on a strictly defensive footing. Thus, it really does come down to what we think the role of our armed forces should be. Peacekeeping, or strictly defensive? But either way, we need to build up our air forces, both defensive/offensive weapons (fighters) and transport.
  14. Canada HAS oil. I believe the US is our largest market for it. Unfortunately, for several reasons, it is difficult for us to extricate ourselves from current agreements and deals. The use of oil as a bargaining chip with the US is potentially beneficial, but for the moment, unattainably so.
  15. Yes caesar, it does increasingly seem as though free trade has drawn us so close to the US that we no longer have any maneouvering room in any negotiations. I'm not one of those people afraid that we'll completely lose our sovereignty, either politically or culurally, because of close ties to the US, but I definitely agree that it hinders our movement as an individual nation.
  16. Well, TS, points 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, and obviously to an extent, 6, all refer to his handling of the Iraq situation. I stand by my conclusion that you either love him or hate him, based on Iraq.
  17. Our relationship, and much of the world's, with the US is like that of the farmer and the ants. The ants see their homes destroyed by the clumsy farmer's boots, and hate the farmer for it. The farmer wonders why, he has no such feelings towards the ants. He simply can't avoid all the little ants scurrying around underfoot... he doesn't hate them, but nor can he look out for the safety of each individual ant.
  18. The reason that Martin will not attempt to tackle the Constitution is the same reason that no other current or recent leader will or has. It's a career-ender. The fact of the matter is, if he has any further political aspirations, they're over if he touches the Constitution. You simply can't please everyone, and the status quo is much easier to defend than any changes are. Martin is smart enough to realize this. The only people who would dare go there are men whose egos are too big to realize that their career is over when they finish. Men like Trudeau and Mulroney think they can bring everyone together and come out looking like a hero, but they can't. They piss too many people off in the process. It would take a truly great man under extraordinary circumstances to achieve something like that, and I don't see any truly great men on the current political scene.
  19. Oh... my mistake. Apparently, actually being able to speak English isn't important for a government job. Competency? How competent is a 6-month immigrant from whereever (not going to start naming names) who can barely speak the language but happens to meet affirmative action criteria? There is such a thing as overcompensation...too much political correctness...whatever you want to call it, it does exist and I can't believe you honestly don't recognize it, RB. And I also remember that RCMP announcement. Why do we even HAVE quotas? Any quota means there is a conscious discrimination occurring.
  20. You know... when I see these arguments about Canada/US relations... even the name of this board... I feel kind of helpless. What Canada needs is a bargaining chip... something we can threaten the US with that they can't ignore, so they have to concede to at least SOME of our wishes. So many things it would be helpful for... beef ban... softwood lumber... Star Wars... Iraq... Anybody have any ideas as to what we have that the US can't get anywhere else? An essential service or product, that realistically we could cut off for a few days or weeks until they gave in on something?
  21. Drugs ... I think perhaps the government DOES need to "hold our hands for our entire lives" in some cases. There are many people out there who have (for the leftists) very serious problems, and (for the more right-wing member of this forum), ARE a drain on our economy and society in general. As long as people do things detrimental to themselves and society, they need help. Legalizing drugs is NOT the answer. Now, the second part of it... how do we combat drugs, and similarly, terrorism? Conventional policing has not been terribly effective against drugs, and literally zero effect on terrorism... in both cases, because they are generally based in foreign countries, whose governments are more often than not hostile to Western interests. So, as long as we agree that terrorism and drugs are a problem, and as long as we agree that policing can't solve them, then what are we to do? I don't have the answer... military intervention seems like the most effective means of response, but there are many very good arguments to NOT use the military in these roles... not the least of which is that any military role in a foreign country constitutes an invasion... What do you think?
  22. Whether or not you believe that Iraq was a threat, to either the US, or the world in general, or other nations in the region, and whether, as a threat, it was right to invade, is, I think I'm safe to say, what the whole debate is about. (sorry about the run-on sentence) It's not about Bush, who believed very strongly one way, nor is it about the extreme-leftists, who believe very strongly the other way. As for whether he is the worst president since Nixon...well, you either love him or hate him, depending almost entirely on your threat assessment of Iraq. I don't think logical reasoning can solve this or change any minds either, because nobody on this board has the necessary facts... and it is entirely possible that nobody alive on the planet (save for Hussein himself) has them. This is possibly the most pointless discussion currently under way.
  23. While I believe the federal government should play a role in more areas than defense, healthcare, and justice, I do not believe that government should fund special interest groups. Any time that the federal government gives money to one such group, be they cultural groups, social groups, or others, they are showing a favouritism that should not be shown by a governing body, using money that they shouldn't have the right to spend in such a manner. If the government gave money to a Jewish community, then an equal amount should be given to Palestinian groups in this country. If we're going to fund gay pride parades, there should be a corresponding "Rednecks Against Fagots" parade. (No, I'm not serious.) But you see the point. Government should stay out of cultural issues and avoid spending tax dollars that favour one group over another. If a special interest group wants to raise funds, they can go door to door, or stand in a mall, and try to convince private citizens to donate money. It should not be automatically allocated by the government. If I believe in one thing, I don't want my tax money to be spent on an opposing group. The only time that money for culture should be given, is for an equal, all-group event, like a Folkfest or Culture Fair type event. A place where everyone who wants to be represented can be, and no groups are barred.
  24. I believe this has been a topic previously on this board; however, I cannot find it, and I hope that the recent influx of new members can shed some new light, or at least further outrage, on this issue. Why is it, that for many job applications (within the government and without), applications for grants, and even things like scholarships, there are questions about your minority (or lack thereof) status. It seems that you need to be a lesbian disabled female member of a "recognized minority" to get a decent job in this country. Somebody should sue the government for not employing an appropriate percentage of white males. I think I'm being politically incorrect, but it's gotten so you can't even mention a "minority" in bad terms without being a racist/homophobe/male chauvinist or whatever. If gays and lesbians, Natives, African-Americans, Latinos, Italians, disabled persons, and even women can get special recognition within the government and elsewhere, why can't I? I suggest that heterosexual male Anglo-Saxons should apply for government funding to help promote our social group... normal people.
  25. It will be a great day in Canadian politics when MPs vote on legislation according to their constituents' views. Of course, I don't see it happening really soon...but you never know. Already, I do see signs of it, when disgruntled MPs vote against the party line on certain issues. I thought about what a no-party system would be like, and it occurs to me that there are benefits. When politicians ally themselves with one party, they are stating what their beliefs are, comprehensively, through the party policy. This allows voters to understand, before the election, approximately what this candidate stands for. If MPs go against party policy too often, how do you know where they really stand on other issues that are important to you? When you vote, you are balancing the desire for a certain candidate against the overall policy of the political party. Many people vote strictly with one party. If that MP goes against their party, what are we voting for? How do we know who to vote for? If MPs voted in the House for what their constituents want, regardless of party policy, there would have to be more effort by individual candidates to enlighten their constituency as to what they, personally, believe.
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