Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Defence, Development, Diplomacy

Damian at The Torch has complied a list of Canadian accomplishments in Afghanistan.

It's long past time that Canadians be made fully aware of our actions in rebuilding Afghanistan. Our men and women are doing good and noble work over there. They deserve our praise, our respect, and our admiration.

The least we can do is get the word out.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Showing mercy

An act of mercy or casting pearls before swine?

MISSOULA, Mont. (AP) — Congregants of a church that was badly vandalized have collected "love baskets" full of electronics for the three suspects.

"The judge will give them consequences, but as a congregation we want to reach out and extend love and mercy to them," said Jason Reimer, a pastor at the South Hills Evangelical Church. "A lot of us, whether we're churchgoers or not, have been in their shoes before and have made some bad choices. But God forgives us."

Giving gifts to those who vandalized their church certainly makes a statement. I know I'd be inclined to throw the book at them. I doubt this will bring about a life chance in those teens, nor do I think it will spur them to consider spiritual things. But I guess that's not the point.

I hope those people didn't just throw away a bunch of money on three snobby, spoiled, ignorant little ingrates.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Collector's Item

Got US $8000 kicking around?

Well, look what you can have.

And I bet he sells it, too.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

File under: Strange

Offered for your perusal, an anti-smoking crusader for kids gets busted for polygamy bigamy.

A man who dresses up as a giant cigarette and uses hip-hop music to encourage children in Lynchburg and beyond to avoid smoking pleaded guilty Tuesday to bigamy. Phillip Dale Williams, 37, had as many as four wives at the same time, Chuck Felmlee, deputy commonwealth's attorney, said.


Williams was known locally for playing "Douglas 'Dude' Cigarette," a character he created in 1996. He has performed in about a dozen states.

Williams faces up to 10 years in prison when he is sentenced March 9.

10 years in prison... for the crime of marrying four people being married to several people at once? That seems a little harsh, especially since it sounds like one of his wives is going to be looking for compensation. Seems more of a punishment to set him free!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Government does it again

At the risk of sounding like a Libertarian in Jardinian Fashion, I'm going to ask a simple yet profound question:

Can government ever do anything right?

In addition to retailers claiming an inordinate number of lottery wins, CBC News has learned that Ontario's lottery corporation has also been battling problems related to instant scratch tickets.

I have a sneaking suspicion that if the BC tax for those who cannot do math Lottery Corporation were completely honest, they would admit to having the same problems. It seems amazing to me that such a huge cash cow for provincial governments would be so shabbily produced.

Last month it was revealed that in the past seven years Ontario clerks and retailers have claimed lottery victories nearly 200 times. University of Toronto statistician Jeffery Rosenthal said statistically the number should have been closer to 57, and was a statistical anomaly nearly impossible to achieve.

I'm not sure exactly what "game" this refers to, but I am assuming Lotto 6/49, as the big jackpot is not won very often.

OLG CEO Duncan Brown reiterated to CBC Tuesday night that the corporation has since put in new, more stringent security measures in place for all of its games.

"We're committed to doing better and we want to make sure that we retain that public trust," Brown said.

Our games are now completely foolproof... and this time we mean it!

Toronto statistician Mohan Srivastava also discovered a way the tickets could be decoded to predict a winner on the game "Tic Tac Toe" nearly three years ago.

Srivastava would look at the numbers on the ticket, and if a sequence of numbers was lined up in tic-tac-toe fashion and were not repeated anywhere else on the ticket, it was likely a winner.

After graduating high school, I took a job at the local 7-Eleven. I remember one customer in particular enjoyed playing the $3 crossword puzzles, but he had a system that at the time seemed quirky. He noticed that whenever the word "Zucchini" appeared on the ticket, it was never a winner. He also noticed this with certain city names like "Kamloops" that were printed on certain tickets. He would scan the ticket before paying for it to ensure he did not receive one with those words on it. Once, I heckled him for making such a big deal out of it. He told me to pay for one and scan it to see if it was a winner. Hoping to prove him wrong, I shelled out three loonies and scanned the ticket with word "Zucchini". Lo and behold, it was not a winner.

According to OLG documents, investigators looking into allegations of insider scratch ticket wins routinely checked for "pin-pricking," where a card is scratched very lightly to see if it contains a winning code.

It would have been exceptionally easy to do this sort of trickery when I worked in retail. The system in BC may be different now, but at the time all you needed to validate a ticket was three bold numbers, usually found in the corner of the "scratch 'n win" ticket. I can say with relative certainty that a majority of scratch ticket customers I dealt with were not aware of this, and would not notice if such a small section of their ticket were lightly scratched out.

"If someone explained the trick to you, I think, I actually know, a child could do it," Srivastava said.

Are you listening out there, provincial lottery corporations?

Red Ensign Standard #46

Oops, I forgot to mention the latest Standard is up.

Hey, thanks Scott! Great job with that.

"The MADD people are as whacko as PETA."

Some interesting comments on drinking & driving over at Dust my Broom today. Lisa sarcastically notes in her post:

Collective “rights” and “protections” are prior to the rights of individuals. There is nothing obtrusive about forcing global warming contributors to blow into a tube before they are permitted to start their vehicle as we are each and everyone responsible to everyone.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Left Behind

...and I'm not talking about any rapture...





B-List, Baby!

B-List Blogger

I guess it helps to have a sidebar the length of the Bulkley River!

Stanley Cup Ring to Harvey, who is also a B-Lister!

Friday, November 17, 2006

You Will Urinate Here.

The taxpayers of Victoria are paying for this?

"...we will find out whether or not we can train people to use the urinals."

This is wrong on so many levels.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

That's one expensive bottle opener



Stanley Cup Ring to Samantha Burns.

The Idiot Test

I made it through the Idiot Test on my very first try. No joke.

Can you pass the Idiot Test? Comments regarding your status are welcome!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

"Shorty" Gordon

What a story. What a life.

Rest in Peace, Shorty.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

One-Liner Headliner

I'm shocked, shocked by this headline.

Hamas Says It Won't Recognize Israel

Naturally, the first comment at the end of the story is "Good for Hamas!"

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Remembrance Day round-up


That's what I'm feeling right now.

I went to the Veteran's Peace Park in Smithers to observe the Remembrance Day ceremony, thinking that 10:40 would be a good time to arrive and find a good spot to stand. Boy, was I wrong! There must have been four to five hundred people there, and I was relegated to rear status for the proceedings, so I didn't get to snap as many pictures as I had hoped.

There are plenty of bloggers who have more eloquent words describing what Remembrance Day/Veteran's Day means to them, so I'll just leave you with this picture, worth at least a thousand words:

There were many children playing in the snow and enjoying the winter weather. Several were not even born in the 20th century!

All this made possible by those who went before us.

John has a great post up, "I am among giants."

So does Alan, and Andrew.

A day of silence at The Monarchist.

Good stuff today over at the Torch, and Canadian Heroes says thanks.

And I'd be quite foolish if I neglected to point out this little gem over at Dust my Broom. I'm weeping and bursting with pride: There is one thing that we can be proud of & that is that he & nearly all of our battalion that were left never gave up an inch, but died fighting against tremendous odds. They outnumbered us 75 to 1, as it is estimated that 9000 came over & there were only about 120 of our boys left to face them. The other Canadian battalions just walloped the Jesus out of them a few days later & took back all the lost ground & inflicted awful losses on the Huns.

Lest We Forget

Thank You, Heroes.

I'm going to the ceremony at the cenotaph in Smithers shortly. Pictures will be posted later.

Lest We Forget.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

State Funeral for our Heroes

Please take twenty-five seconds of your life to sign this petition, which urges the Prime Minister to offer a state funeral for the last veteran of World War One.

And if you needed anymore convincing, then take two minutes of your life and read this post. An exceprt:

As reported in today’s Globe and Mail, barely a third of our fellow citizens can name the battle of Vimy Ridge as a key Canadian victory in the First World War, even when the answer is hinted at in the question. One in four respondents thought Douglas Macarthur, not Sir Arthur Currie, was a great Canadian general in World War One; a result that reveals a stunning lack of awareness of both chronology and nationality. Equally disconcerting, less than half of 18 to 24 year olds surveyed were familiar with Capitan John McRae’s immortal (or maybe not) war poem, In Flanders Fields.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Monday Morning Surprise

This is not the kind of thing you want to wake up to on a Monday morning.
Alas, this is what occurs when one is plowing snow and one backs up without paying attention to what is behind one's truck.

The insurance company told me my deductible will get waived as soon as the driver of the truck files his claim. I talked to him on the phone and he said he'd put it on his insurance. He'd better, or they'll be hell to pay, West Coast Chaos style, heh!

The body shop has a new windshield on order for me, but it probably won't be available for installation until Wednesday. As for the body damage, I'd sure like to get a new door out of the deal, but as long as they can make it look the way it was before, I'll be happy. Unfortunately I do not see them being able to repair it for a couple of weeks at least. This time of year is always busy for collision repair shops (of course), and normally I can be patient about such things. But in this case, it wasn't even my fault! If I had been driving like a maniac in winter conditions and crashed my car, well okay then it's my own problem. But this was brought on me by external forces that are beyond my control, which makes it even more difficult to stomach.

Do you have any ICBC stories you want to share? Any crashes that were someone else's fault? Your own fault?

I had one pretty bad one eight years ago that nearly totaled my car. I was driving too fast in the snow and hit a no-post! But insurance covered it and my rates went sky high for a couple of years. Apart from that, I've been in two fender-benders that were not my fault: one in Smithers when I was and one while driving through Fraser Lake.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

The John Kerry we all know and love

This story about John Kerry is absolutely priceless:

So as most of you know I travel for work. Last week, Friday morning in fact, I was on a United flight from Pittsburgh to Washington Dulles. Sitting in 1A (first class of course) was John Kerry. I was in 2A (and Ruben Studdard was in 2F, but that's beside the point).


The flight attendent, as they are wont to do in the front of the plane, came round a few times for some pre-flight beverage orders. Senator Kerry simply ignored the poor stewardess who was just trying to do her job. She must have asked him 3 or 4 times, hovering near his shoulder and whispering so as not to disturb his call. He finally waved her away with a careless flap of his hand, an outright dismissal of the airline worker. That irritated me some more. But whatever, perhaps he was just in a bad mood. The Senator continued to talk on his Blackberry, long after the cabin door was closed and the plane was in motion, taxiing to the runway. This is in direct violation of Federal law as the flight attendants clearly pointed out in the pre-flight safety announcements.


He took off his jacket and held it on his lap until the plane leveled and the flight attendent was up and about. He then discarded the jacket to her with one hand held out while his head was down rummaging in the bag he had at his feet. It looked like this poor girl was his personal assistant as she grabbed the jacket and hung it up. Not so much of a thank you or anything from the Senator. Also keep in mind that being in 1A, he was not supposed to have a bag at his feet. That is a bulkhead seat and there is no seat in front of him. It is one of those pesky Federal laws again.


He also started fussing with his hair. I mean, it wasn't just a 'oh let me make sure my hair isn't sticking up' tussle of the hair, this was a full-on, constant-motion, self-grooming that lasted the rest of the flight. As far as I could tell, it looked fine to begin with and none of his self-grooming had the least bit of effect. Perhaps it made him feel better though.


I shook his hand. It confirmed everything that I felt about him in my gut. It was akin to grabbing hold of a damp towel. Or more to the point, you know that memory foam at Brookstone that they make pillows and mattresses out of? You know, the stuff you put your hand in and the impression of your hand stays there for a few minutes? Yeah, that was what his hand shake was like. I nearly recoiled in horror. He felt...dead. I mean, it was cold out and his hand was cold and it was limp cause he's a puss and well I guess he just felt...dead.

I've quote just sample of the entire story. The whole thing is just so typical Kerry! This guy will never be President. Ever.

Never saw this on the Periodic Table of Elements

A little late for the caption contest; nonetheless, I found this quite funny.

Bell Curve Salvation

There are plenty of rich folks in the kingdom, just like there are plenty of poor folks in as well.

Using a very simple mathematical model of humankind and the deity, Oslington generates amusing explanations for traditional features of religion--why some but not all are saved, why apostasies often seem so sudden and dramatic, and why, as the diagram at left indicates, it might just be easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

And, I might hastily add, an entirely bullshit model. Applying rational choice tools to the content of religion (in general) and salvation (in particular) is a rather large waste of time. It may provide a way of "exploring the limits of economic analysis", but that way is so admittedly simple that it cannot see the forest sue to the large number of trees in the way.

Have a look at the parking lot of your average church in North America - you won't see a lot of bicycles parked there. Some church services are designed entirely for those on the lower end of the economic scale. Conversely, there are church buildings whose parking lots are packed full of Lincoln's, Cadillac's, PT Cruisers, and other such elegant vehicles. Some are a unique mixture of both. The Church (that is, the universal community of those "in Christ") cannot be pigeon-holed in such a way.

At the risk of sounding like a 'thumper', God has been saving both rich and poor people throughout history. A passing glance at the Bible will confirm that.

Using graphs and formulae to predict who will be saved and who will not based on their wealth is to ignore everything special about the Everlasting Covenant, and to the One who established it.

Does she look familiar?

"Saddam verdict unleashes violence fears" blah blah blah ho hum...

But look closely at this photo from the story.

Doesn't she looks an awful lot like this lady.

I'm probably barking up the wrong tree here, since Beirut is quite a distance from Baghdad. Nonetheless, we've all learned that journalists in the mainstream media (and those hired by the MSM to take pictures of global events) are not shy about manipulating their photos.


I've added a few new links to my sidebar, and dropped a few dead ones. Also, I threw the archives section to the bottom.

Geez, when you leave things for so long it sure gets cluttered, don't it?

Good News!

Oh Happy Day!
BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq's High Tribunal on Sunday found Saddam Hussein guilty of crimes against humanity and sentenced him to hang...

Oh this truly is a good thing. One can only hope he'll meet his end sooner rather than later. the visibly shaken former leader shouted "God is great!"

Erhm. "Allah" may very well be "Akbar", but soon Saddam's vile carcass will be "Rigor", followed closely by "Mortis".

And on that day I will offer up a toast the Iraqi people.

Update 3:45pm Sunday Nov 5-
Pithiest and most appropriate post on Saddam ever, courtesy of the Torturer at the Rottie: "Say Buh-Bye, asshole"

Update, 8:47 am Sunday Nov 5-
"The hanging of Saddam Hussein will turn to hell for the Americans," said Vitaya Wisethrat, a respected Muslim cleric in Thailand, where a bloody Islamic insurgency is raging in the country's south.

"The Saddam case is not a Muslim problem but the problem of America and its domestic politics," he said. "The Americans are about to vote in a midterm election, so maybe Bush will use this case to tell the voters that Saddam is dead and that the Americans are safe. But actually the American people will be in more danger with the death of Saddam."

Perhaps Mark Steyn is right. There may be moderate Muslims out there, but there is no moderate Islam.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Making all Christians look bad

The pastor of the New Life Church in Colorado has resigned amidst a sex scandal.

The Rev. Ted Haggard agreed to resign as leader of the New Life Church after its independent investigative board recommended removal, saying he was guilty "of sexually immoral conduct."


A man describing himself as an escort told news media this week that Haggard, who also has resigned as president of the influential National Association of Evangelicals, had been paying him for sex for three years.

No wonder Christianity in general (and Christians in particular) has a hard time putting forth a credible witness. Our supposed 'leaders' seem best at leading us into stealing, cheating, and lying! I wonder what his poor wife must think, finding out that her husband has been paying a homosexual escort for sex.

More here, as well as video of his confession about buying methamphetamines.