Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Boxer - from the Concert in Central Park...One of the Best Pop Songs Ever Written

Promises, Promises

This morning, Peter Ladner will make a major policy announcement about his Mayoral platform.

It will include more police and a larger focus on law-and-order.

OK. We shall see.

On Tuesday, the lowest number of voters in Canadian history, 59%, turned out to exercise the franchise for which men and women died in world conflicts and which sits at the heart of the democratic ideal.

This is a shameful abandonment of civic duty and a refusal by 40% of Canadians to embrace citizenship.

It is true that the leaders and many of the candidates were shoddy and second-rate, but they are the candidates and voting is what distinguishes democracies for the moment from tyrannies of one kind or another.

Last night, John McCain showed that he is smarter and better informed than many of us gave him credit. He was still offensive and fighting ancient wars and shmarmy to the nth degree, but smarter.

And what is this childish fear Americans have of universal health care? McCain's closing volley on Obama's wish to insure the 47 million uninsured Americans is that if Obama doesn't like the way things are in the USA, he could try Canada or England...suggesting that those are both terrible places.

News for the good old boy - Canada, England, France, Denmark and Sweden, among many other countries, have excellent universal health care programs, any of which the Excited States could implement in a heart beat if they weren't so obsessively hung up on the word, "socialism."

Our health care system in Canada has all kinds of problems, but it is still magnificent and it makes America's claims to be the best place on earth laughable.

And finally...

On the stranglehold and unhealthy influence of religion in Yanqui political life, there is this from the September edition of the New Yorker:

A couple of weeks before August 28th—the night that Barack Obama accepted the Democratic nomination for President, in a Denver football stadium—Stuart Shepard, the digital-media director of the lobbying arm of Focus on the Family, one of the most powerful organizations on the religious right, posed a question to his Internet viewers. “Would it be wrong,” he asked, “to pray for rain?” Shepard’s answer, apparently, was no, because he proceeded to do just that. He prayed for there to be rain—abundant rain, torrential rain, “rain of Biblical proportions”—in Denver on August 28th. “I’m praying for unexpected, unanticipated, unforecasted rain that starts two minutes before the speech is set to begin,” he said, adding, “I know there will probably be people who will pray for seventy-two degrees and clear skies, but this isn’t a contest.”

Yes. You read it right.

Focus on the Family, led by James Dobson and his badly dyed reddish brown hair, prayed for rain on Barack Obama's acceptance speech at the outdoor stadium in Denver.

You cannot write material this funny. It can only happen...well, you know where.


In Life, there is promise.

In politics, there are promises.

Promises, Promises