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Sabre Rider

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  1. The day they detonated their first nuke and launched a missile over Japan was the day that the possibility of military intervention ended, leaving only negotiation and diplomacy as the only viable options.....that and trying to whack the entire leadership structure of North Korea in one fell swoop. Depending on the variant (two or three stage), the North Korean Taepo Dong II has an estimated range of somewhere between 4000 kilometres (2500 miles) and 4500 kilometres (2800 miles) with a maximum payload of 500 kilograms (1100 pounds) at max range usage, more then enough to carry a fairly primitive nuclear device in the kiloton yield range. In 1951, the US Mark-7 nuclear device weighed in at approximately 1500 lbs and had an explosive yield of 20 kilo tons. The missile base in Dongchang-ri has launched these missiles, including one placing a satellite into orbit and major Japanese cities as well as all of South Korea are well within range. And while the current generation of Taepo Dong II's still cannot reach Hawaii, Alaska is almost within range. The average US citizen may take some comfort in the fact that if nuclear war was to break out between the US and North Korea, that they are for the most part safely out of range, the same cannot be said of the citizens of South Korea, Japan and possibly Australia. Even if North Korea has only one ready to launch Teopo Dong II and a nuke to carry, that is one too many. If war was to break out and the North Koreans launched a nuclear armed missile striking Seoul, or Tokyo or even Sydney, a US victory would be one of a Pyrrhic nature. And this is what the North Korean leadership is banking on. Say what you will of Kim Jong-il, he is neither stupid or insane, a despot yes, but not stupid or insane. He is playing the odds, odds say that while the US is quick to attack a minor military power, but is loath to go head to head with a foe that is capable of hurting them badly. By having even a couple of nukes are his disposal, he knows that the US will at most fume and rave but will not act aggressively. This allows him to make threats and to use his perceived insanity and weapons as a bargaining chip to win concessions from us.
  2. No, no we are not, a best we are an upper middle economic power.
  3. Funny thing, both the Mafia and the Hell's Angels keep a rather low profile and rarely have any direct dealings with the general public, unless of course said member of the public has dealings with them in some manner. The recent crack down on the Hell's Angels has had a rather dramatic and unpleasant side effect here in BC. The vacuums left by the Hell's Angels in the illicit drug trade has allowed such groups as the Red Scorpions and UN Gang to flourish and they been having running gun battles on the streets of the Lower Mainland. In the past, the Hell's Angels would of cracked down hard on those upstarts and maintained a semblance of order in the street drug trade. And while you and I may not agree with said trade, it is a hard fact that there is nothing we can really do to stop it. It's been going on ever since day one and will continue to go on until the profit element is removed from it. Given the choice of having an outlaw biker group such as the Hell's Angels running the show and maintaining a bit of order or have the idiots from the Red Scorpions or UN Gangs running around like it was the old American West, I'll take the Hell's Angels any day of the week.
  4. On this I concur, Canada is far too reliant on the US markets. Any wise fund manager will insist his client diversify their investments in order to minimize their risk and still make a good profit. It's an unwise investor who does not heed that advice and puts their entire nest egg into one type of investment, which while during the good times can make them a huge profit, but can also wipe them out when the markets turn sour. Canada was just such an investor, placing the vast majority our nest egg into one main investment. Fortunately we have started to diversify our investments, however we are still too deep invested in the US markets. Not only should we be looking into partnerships with Russia and China, but also with the rest of the entire world. And we should also stop looking at ourselves as a nation of hewers of wood and totters of water, but also need to reinvest in our manufacturing sectors. We have the talent, the resources and the space to build damn near anything in the world, so why don't we? Some say its because of our levels of pay that we cannot be competitive, I say bullshit. With automation you can drastically decrease labour costs, take the lumber industry for instance. Mills that once employed 100's now can run and product more on a fraction of that physical labour. With lower costs and freed up skilled labour, you can build even more mills and run true economies of scale. Why do you think that nations like the US and Russia are buying up and relocating our closed down mills into their territories? (Yes, I do understand the mechanics of both marco and micro-economics.) As I said before, Canada is the one great economic superpower that never was, and yet we could easily be if we just had the balls to be so.
  5. And they cannot trust us either. Let's be honest here, trust is an extremely rare if mythical commodity when it comes to international relations and dealings. Personally I trust the Russians about the same amount as I do the Americans, the Japanese, the Chinese or even my mother countrymen, the English. Every nation acts and deals in a manner which they feel benefits them the most, and if that benefit comes at the expense of another nation, so be it. America is said to be our best friend and largest trading partner and even so they have broken the NAFTA treaty far too often to count. America will honour the treaty but only as long as it benefits them, otherwise forget it. Remember the soft wood lumber issue?
  6. I love this. Even if these young Iranian turks are successful, what makes you think that they will be any more receptive to the west then the current hardliners? Methinks a lot of you are putting the cart before the horse.
  7. This is not strictly true. Canada does have a viable and active military industrial complex. Even the much vaunted American M1A1 Abrams tank has Canadian developed, designed and built components in its fire control system. The US Styker Platform is based on the Canadian LAV III platform. And while we currently do not build or design any combat fighter-bombers any more, thanks to the deal Dief the Chief signed with the Americans after killing off the Arrow programme, our aero-space industry does maintain and rebuild our fleet of CF-18's from the ground up. And if I am not mistaken, we have built CF-5's under license in the past. It would not be that great of a jump from building combat aircraft under license to designing and building our own aircraft, of course it would mean telling the US to take the deal Dief signed off on and wipe their arses with it. As for ships, true we have not built any large warships in ages, but that is not to say we couldn't. We have both the technological know how and the ship yards to build any type of ship we wished, be it a super carrier, a nuclear powered sub or a rowboat. When the Halifax Frigates came out, they really put the wind up the US Naval Industrial establishment. The Canadian designed and built fire control systems on those Frigates rivaled that of the US Aegis Class and was seen as a direct threat to US sales of said systems. Fortunately as far as the Americans were concerned, Canada did not push their system on to the worlds naval markets, another lost opportunity for Canadian technology and business. And all those quiet and empty car manufacturing plants in Ontario. Well, it wouldn't take much to reconfigure some of them to produce MBT's, AFV's, APC's, and other munch needed military vehicles. And if even Israel can design and build a world class MBT, then so can Canada. Canada does have all the frameworks required to build our own home designed and manufactured military equipment, purposely built to meet our own unique requirements and specifications. However, all this requires a huge investment both in capital and political will. And sadly, I don't see the average Canadian having the will or the willingness to invest in such things.
  8. That may well be so, however have you ever stopped to ask the question why it is so? Lets face it, for the past 60 years our approach to Russia and the former Soviet Union has been them or us with little to no middle ground for compromise. No doubt as we currently view them, they view us likewise. Personally I feel we blew a golden opportunity first with Gorbachev and later Yeltsin. Had we played it right, we most likely would not have to be playing hard ball with hard core Russian Nationalist such as Putin and now Medvedev. As for Northern Sovereignty, the old argument of use it or lose it still applies. And it's not just the evil Russians we have to worry about but also our so-called friends, allies and neighbours such as the US, Norway and others. The US is the most vocal when it comes to making the North West Passage an international and open waterway, meaning they have the right to defend or even claim it if and when it suits their purposes. Also, by have the North West Passage designated as an International Waterway opens it up to exploitation to all comers, regardless about what we Canadians think or feel. That the North West Passage cuts right through the middle of Canada's Arctic Territories is neither here nor there as far as the US and Russia are concerned. Canada's true wealth has always be in the Northern hinterlands and yet most of us live no more then 200 miles from the Canada/US border. To truly exert our sovereignty of the north, we need to approach it on many fronts. And while defense of the north is a key element it is truly secondary to opening up and developing the north. This mean Canadians not only have to invest capital into said development, but also must be willing to relocate there and work those developments. If we don't, others will and to them will go the spoils. But sadly, we aren't doing any of this, in fact we are busy stripping the North of the means to exploit its resources and providing well paying employment to its people along with cutting the tax dollars said development and employment brings to all levels of government. As we speak, there is a very large and modern mill in Fort Nelson BC that is currently under negotiations for sale to Russia. Think about it. Fort Nelson is in the North East corner of BC, a modern mill that directly and indirectly employed hundreds of people in the region is going to be sold, dismantled, and shipped overseas to our biggest competitor in the North. Sure the owners of said mill will pocket a nice bit of change and their shareholders will get a nice little dividend, but at the cost of cutting our own throats. I have always despaired, that Canada is the one global economic superpower that never was. Not because we lack resources, not because we lack the means of production, not because we lack markets, not because we lack talent but because we are far too complacent, far too self-effacing, far too fearful of risk and dare I say it, far too lazy. But this has not always been so. During the second world war, the Americans proudly proclaimed that they were the arsenal of democracy, however it is a fact that Canada and Canadian Industry out produced the US on a per capita basis. Meaning while the US produced more war materials over all, Canada produced more per unit of production and dollar spent. After the war, the RCAF sent out flights of Lancasters and Mosquito's to map out the North, even then they knew how important that barren landscape was. During the early fifties, Avro Canada developed and built the worlds second jet passenger liner, which flew only a couple of weeks after the de Havilland Comet, this at a time when the US based Boeing, Martin and Lockheed were still trying to perfect large piston powered airliners. And let's not forget about the Avro Arrow, an aircraft who's performance spec's and technology still rivals those of todays modern 3rd and 3.5 generation fighters. In the past, Canada and Canadians have amply demonstrated to the world that we are a people to be reckoned with and we have the know how, the ability and the stomach to get things done. But alas, all that has seemed to have changed and not for the better. I place the blame of starting this hideous trend squarely with PM John Diefenbaker. It was his government that put the boots to Canada's blossoming aerospace industry and started the brain drain of Canadian talent to the US and and other parts of the world. And each government, be they Liberal or Conservative including Harpers, have in turn hammered yet another nail into the coffin of Canadian pride and drive. We have become a nation of sheep, there is no other way of putting it. We bleat and bleat how hard done by we are, how hard it is to get a head, how the government is either not doing enough or is doing too much. And yet we do not put either our money or our labour into measures that would benefit us all as a nation and a people. So my friends, if you want to protect and defend our Northern Sovereignty and to become a major and respective player on the world stage, its time to put your money and your labour on the line. Demand that the government start investing in the north, demand that Canadian companies get first crack at said development, be prepared to move there yourself and put in your own effort and capital. Demand that all branches of the Armed Forces along with the civilian Coast Guard have all the resources they require to protect and defend the north. Be willing to accept paying the cost for such action and consider it to be a long term investment that while costing a small fortune at first, will bring a large fortune in the future. If not, then stop whining and crying about it and don't even think to complain when the spoils of our Northern Territories fall into the hands of the Americans, the Russians, the Chinese or even the Norwegians. It's up to us to protect and develop our Northern Territories and its resources, no one else.
  9. Had the European age of exploration proceeded at the pace of our modern space exploration is going, the America's would still be in the hands of the First Nations. People like to cite costs and safety as the major draw backs of either manned or robotic space exploration and yet the costs faced by Spain, England, France, and the Dutch in exploring and opening up new trade routes and building colonies was just as pricey and fraught with danger. I have to wonder sometimes if we as a species have not lost more then a little bit of balls. It's been forty years since Armstrong first step on the moon, since then the best we've done is a series of manned LEO shots, a space station in LEO and blown up two shuttles.
  10. Sorry Pliny, but Homo S are nothing more but a subset of of the mammalian branch of the Animalia family. And we are not the only rationalizing/problem solving animal on the planet. Even crows have been proven to use tools to solve a problem. To think that we as a species are any better or more deserving then any other species is just pure vanity on our part. Others here say we are better because we as a rule don't eat our own "poo". True enough, however we do seem to make a habit of shitting in our own nest so to speak with great glee and wide abandonment. I live in the Vancouver area, and looking at the haze and dingy brown stain that is the air we have here sometimes while traveling via BC Ferry's to the Island really drives that point home. Plus I would have to a gnat's whisker away from dying of thirst before I would ever contemplate taking a sip out of the Fraser River, we've just dumped way too much shit into it over the past century and a bit. Also, Homo S is just about the only species known that kills not only other animals for fun, but also each other. Wild Chimps and few other higher primates are known to go to "war" with each other and some species of Dolphins have been seen attacking and killing smaller species of Dolphins for what appears to be sport. Funny how its the so-called higher intelligent species of animals, which includes us hairless apes that engage in such activities. Perhaps you are right, perhaps we should not consider ourselves to be animals, for it would seem such an association is a blatant insult.................................to the animals.
  11. We fit all the established biological criteria of being "animals".....to think otherwise is to place us upon a pedestal we do not deserve. (freely pinch from another site) [1] Bacteria - prokaryotic, single-celled organisms. We're not prokaryotic, so we're not bacteria. [2] Protista - eukaryotic, single-celled organisms. We're multicellular, so we're not protists. [3] Fungi - we are motile, we do not have a chitin cell wall, and we do not reproduce by spores, so we're not fungi. [4] Plantae - we are motile, we do not have a cellulose cell wall, and we do not obtain our energy by photosymthesis, so we're not plants. [5] Animalia - we are motile, and we are consumers, digesting food internally. So we are animals.
  12. Within Chimpanzee populations along with Dolphin population, male and female bi-sexual behaviour is a readily observed and normal everyday occurrence. No stress factors in play, apart from the desire to bond within the group.
  13. As sexual beings as apposed to asexual beings, our sexuality is hard wired into our very being, or in other words, our desire to reproduce ourselves is set deep within our genetic code. That is the basic nature of all sexual beings, to seek out a partner to have sexual relationships with in order to reproduce. That some prefer to have relationships with those of the same gender is neither here nor there, the basic drive or desire is still there. At one time being strictly homosexual was a zero sum game, as two male or two females of our species could not at the time reproduce with each other. Modern reproductive technologies has long since reversed that, now being homosexual is no longer a zero sum game. And it may well be possible in the very near future that the male spermatozoa will no longer be necessary for reproduction of the human species. Fertility researchers are currently exploring the possibility of combining the genetic material of two female ova into one, thus creating a viable fertilized ovum that should develop into a full human being. Think what such a technology would do our very social structure when and if the males of species were suddenly made redundant reproductively speaking. Bare in mind, I am speaking strictly about sexual biology and reproduction here and not about emotional needs. On the emotional front, homosexuals needs are equal to those of heterosexuals. That they can and do form lasting and loving bonds has been shown time and time again. Whether a person is purely homosexual, or purely heterosexual or falling somewhere in between does not diminish them as human beings, deserving of the same rights, respect and freedoms given to any other so-called "normal" member of a society. I, for the life of me cannot understand why some people feel that they are the right to poke their unwanted noses into the private lives of strangers and feel that they have to right to dictate to them what is right or wrong. Personally I believe there is only one real answer to the question, "Are you gay?" and that is "It's none of your business" and if the enquirer is persistent, then the answer is to tell them to get bent.
  14. Are you talking about the nature versus nurture argument? If so you can place me firmly in the nature camp. As sexual beings, our sexuality is preprogrammed as is the object of our desires. Homosexuality may well be a miss-wiring within our brains, and at one time ran counter to our natural prerogative to reproduce. However that is no longer the case. With in vitro fertilization and sperm donation, even homosexual males and females can become breeders and still remain true to their homosexual nature. These advances in fertility technologies have rendered the old argument that homosexuality is counter-productive to the survival of our species null and void. I have read in a number of texts that very few humans are 100% heterosexual or homosexual, that we all have varying degree's of the other within us. It should be possible to graph those degrees of variance within an individual if we so wished to and apply it to a population. Lets say we put hard core homosexuality at the left side of the graph and give it a value of -100 (the negative number is just for graphing purposes, you can easily assign negative numbers to the heterosexual population if you so wished) and hard core heterosexuality to the right at +100. Place true bisexuality in the middle with a score of zero. From there you would need to develop a series of questions which I am not qualified to draw up that addresses an individuals true sexuality and from the answers, plot where they really fall in our graph. We should be able to then get a true picture of human sexuality in regards to hetero/homosexuality. That we are even having this discussion is rather telling, in that it shows we still have a long way to go in accepting that others have sexual preferences that are different from our own. Makes me wonder just how far we truly have advanced as a species.
  15. My head is far from pickled thank you kindly, however I fear the same cannot be said for you as you seem unable to recognize satire when it's presented to you. Now how about addressing my rebuttal to your earlier post, or is this all you have in your quiver?
  16. Have you ever considered the possibility that he was unhappy and attempted suicide not because he was gay, but because for the majority of his life he was forced to live a lie and that living that lie have become far too much to bare? The man was no doubt born with homosexual tendencies and traits and more then likely would of been openly gay had such an option been allowed 60 some odd years ago. That his foster mother sexually abused him really does not enter into the equation. He more than likely would of been the same had he been raised in a normal family, just like many other closet gays of his generation. However, that option of being openly gay did not exist back then and anyone who was openly gay was subject to all manner of institutionalized abuse from their peers, colleagues, family, the law, society and the church. Indeed, this still holds true even in today's more enlightened society. If you really want to bring grief down upon yourself, just announce you are gay, queer, or a dyke. As you said, he did not accept that he was gay, and thus lead a life based on a lie. No doubt a lie based on survival after all society as a whole did not accept homosexuality back then and to protect themselves, many gay men and women either confirmed to societies norms and expectations and suffered in silence, or they lead a double life, always with the fear of being outed in the back of their minds. Either way, this is not conducive to having a stable mental health. One has to wonder how many seemingly stable "straight" men and women of that generation have attempted or actually have committed suicide when the pressure of denying their true nature became too much of a burden to bare? Even today this happens, especially among the younger of our society. The gentleman you speak of had desires which he was told were abnormal, abhorrent and sinful. He was told this by the church, his family, society, and even the law. Sure he fathered three daughters, lived as a straight married male, but all the while those urges, desires and tendencies he was born with were lurking in the back ground. Can you even begin to imagine the mental anguish he suffered fighting those urges? Can you even begin to imagine what it would be like to think of yourself as abnormal and abhorrent? Sooner or later the pressure would build to an unacceptable and unmanageable level and some has to snap. And when it does snap he was left with one of two options, A: come out of the closet and accept that he is gay and has been living a lie or B: attempt suicide in an attempt not to bring shame upon himself or his family. As for a drug treatment curing of his gayness, again I call bullshit. There is no known "cure" for homosexuality, no magic pill, no shock treatment, no nothing known to man or medical science that can change the basic sexual nature of a person. The closest possible "treatment" is the same used with serial sexual offenders, chemical castration. This does not cure the patient so much as make its near impossible for them to act upon their desires.
  17. One step forward and two steps back?
  18. May God (whichever Skydaddy you happen to believe in, personally I worship the Great God of Rye) help us if ever that evil day comes about.
  19. And what about the normal and healthy heterosexual male who drops his wife and family in favour of some sweet young thing eh? That seems to be pretty normal as well. I would say what you are pointing out is more of a flaw or rather a racial survival trait that permeates the entire male population of our species, be they straight, gay or bi. Women aren't immune to this either, although they are generally not as quick to jump as men. A single heterosexual male would be just as promiscuous as his homosexual counterpart if given the chance. About the only thing that holds back heterosexual male promiscuity is that most heterosexual women ain't into playing that game. When it comes to dropping partners and grabbing the next available pretty young thing, both straights and gays are on par with each other.
  20. Like the treatment used in an attempted to "cure" my left-handedness back in grade school during the mid-60's? That "treatment" consisted of verbal ridicule in front my grade one classmate (who were encouraged to rat out and ridicule lefties), being rapped across the knuckles and being forced to hold my left arm high in the air in class during printing practice. Such "enlightened" and "humane" treatments were the norm back then in the Vancouver School System. They came to a screeching stop when my mother went down to the school and raised merry hell. Given your disbelief and scorn of scientific method in regards to Evolution, I find your faith in science finding a "cure" for homosexuality rather hypocritical and not a little distrubing. Something tells me you would be all in favour of and would be more then willing to apply the same type of "cure" for homosexuality and once was used to "cure" me of my left-handedness. While I am neither a homosexual nor have any interested in partaking in the homosexual lifestyle, I have no problem with it and say live and let live. For the majority of homosexuals, they live a pretty normal life once you get over their choice of lover.
  21. As my statistical analysis instructor put it, normality can only be found of the fat end of the bell curve, in the real world the majority of things fall either to the left or the right to the statistical mean.
  22. Jeez, you are a right wanker aren't ya? Homosexuality is pretty universal throughout the animal kingdom. All primate species of which humans are a member of have a homosexual percentage in their population, along with a bi-sexual population, get over it. As scat fetishism and homosexuality, yeah there are those gays into such things, but then again so are a number of so-call normal heterosexual men. Fetishism is not bound by sexuality, but rather is part of an individuals sexual make up. I happen to have a thing for women with small perky breasts with is against the norm that favours big breasts, does that make me abnormal or strange? Actually, I think that this is crux of your problem: Let me guess, someone close to you, who you considered to be a "Man's man" and now has come out to play for the other side? Bet you felt betrayed and judging from your squawking, resentful that he had the balls to do so while you still are fighting those urges. Yup, you are a right wanker. People put all kinds of stickers on their cars, denoting religious affiliations, union affiliations, team affiliations, political affiliations, professional affiliations, heritage affiliations, national affiliations, school affiliations, even favorite radio stations. And when I was younger, I had a bumper sicker that proclaimed that I liked pussy. So how is the rainbow sticker any different eh? You say you don't hate gays and I am calling bullshit. Your hatred and fear is plain to see in your writings. Maybe you should be honest with yourself and just get out of the closet eh? Too misquote Shakespeare, "Methinks you doth protest too much"
  23. Just returned from the second annual West Coast (Vancouver) Ride For Dad in support of Prostrate Cancer research and education. This year almost 2000 riders took part and raised C$140,000 for local Prostrate Cancer research and education. These rides are happening in 23 communities around Canada, and if you are a biker and especially if you are male and 40+ years of age, I'd recommend going on one if they are happening in your area.....consider it to be a cheap form of insurance for the the future.
  24. Okay, enough of this bullshit. The RCMP are not, I repeat are not executioners, nor is it in their mandate or duty to act as judge, jury and executioner. The RCMP along with all other Canadian Policing agencies are law enforcement officers as defined as their roles as officers of the peace and officers of the court. And may whatever God you believe in save you if they ever do get that power, because none of us would be safe. Asking them to shoot or even they had actually shot and kill a person such a Li in order to "spare" the victim's relatives further grief, and to appease our sense of righteous indignation along with slating our thirst for vengeance not only does a disservice to the RCMP membership, but it is a blatant insult to them. The RCMP can only use lethal force when a: their lives are in danger or b: when the life of a citizen is in danger. They are also highly trained in where and when lethal force is to be used and in this case it was not required. The victim was no longer in mortal danger as he was already deceased and Li was contained. And while the defilement of the victims body is horrific, it was not sufficient reason for any police force to use lethal force. Had Li charged at the RCMP, then the use of lethal force could be morally and legally used. Whether or not Li ever walks the streets as a freeman again will be up to both the courts and medical professionals and fortunately not up to a knee jerk reactionary mob ready to storm the castle keep with torches and pitchforks.
  25. Science does not deal with absolutes, it asks questions, develops theories to answer those questions, run tests and experiments to prove or disprove the theories, and more often then not actually create more questions in the process. There are no holy cows in science, even the seemly sacrosanct Newtonian Laws of Motion and Albert Einstein's Theory of Relativity are constantly being questioned, tested and revised as new knowledge is gleemed. Religion on the other had does deal with absolutes, basically, GOD's word as written down is absolute and is not open to be questioned or challenged. To do so is to risk incurring the wrath of church (whichever one hold sway in your society) and its hordes of true believers. Even educated Churchmen are not immune to prosecution from the church when they put forth a theory that runs counter to Church Dogma, just ask Copernicus. True science and honest scientist do not claim to have all the answers, religion and its true believe DO claim to have all the answers, therein lays the biggest difference between the two. But to answer your question, how did the universe begin, well Physicist are still working on that question and have some very interesting theories which require an understanding of higher mathematics that the majority of us could never hope to master or understand. However those theories and idea can be presented in a manner that makes them understandable to most of us. Here are a couple of links of BBC Science Programmes for you that deal with the subject: Most of the universe is missing Parallel Universes
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