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Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Hillier, who used to be a corporal in the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, is a volunteer with the 1st North American Expeditionary Force, a private organization that is providing aid to anyone who wants to help the Kurds in their fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), also known as ISIS or simply Islamic State.

Hillier, who grew up in Carleton Place and is the son of Progressive Conservative MPP Randy Hillier, said he accomplished more good in 20 hours at Tel al-Ward than he did in the past 26 years of his life. read more

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

David Masciotra, Salon: Put a man in uniform, preferably a white man, give him a gun, and Americans will worship him. It is a particularly childish trait, of a childlike culture, that insists on anointing all active military members and police officers as "heroes." The rhetorical sloppiness and intellectual shallowness of affixing such a reverent label to everyone in the military or law enforcement betrays a frightening cultural streak of nationalism, chauvinism, authoritarianism and totalitarianism, but it also makes honest and serious conversations necessary for the maintenance and enhancement of a fragile democracy nearly impossible. read more

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

France's Socialist government has detailed a 21 billion-euro ($26.5 billion) cost-cutting plan, the deepest-ever spending cuts in the country's modern history.

Presenting the 2015 budget Wednesday, Finance Minister Michel Sapin said, "These spending cuts are crucial to our credibility in the eyes of the French and Europeans, they'll be fully applied."

A significant part of the savings is to be made on France's generous welfare system. The government plans to cut 3.2 billion euros from health spending, and to cut family benefits by 700 million euros. read more


Totally off topic, but my buddy crash landed his plane the other day...


Again, totally off topic, but a pretty cool story. His wife is pregnant, so I'm really glad she was not with him.

"No I wouldn't. They're a lot more like you than me. Idealists, albeit with different ideals. I'm a pragmatist."

That wasn't directed at you. It was directed at Speak, who seems to believe that person (1) can't make a good decision for himself, but person (2) can make better decisions for people 1-n than those folks could individually. You actually came off as being far more pragmatic than I have ever seen previously.

"The crux of your philosophy is that what someone perceives as their best interest is truly their best interest."

And the failure of your position is believing that you can derive what one's "best interest" is without being that person. I think we can both agree that what each of us feels would be in our respective individual best interests are probably very different, no?

"Here in America, and in 118* other countries in the world, a patient discharged from the hospital after heart surgery can go to McDonald's and order herself a Big Mac, against doctor's orders."

I don't have to work tomorrow, so I'm chugging a Great Raft Southern Drawl Pale Lager. Is that in my best interest? To me it is? The Baptists down the road who try to get me to go to chuch would probably disagree. As would my liver. Yet still I drink.

In Colorado, pot is now legal. Is it one's best interest to smoke pot? Not from a health standpoint. Nor should one ride motorcylces or ATVs. Or snow ski. Yet I'll continue to do all of the above, with the exception of pot. And I'll probably even do that, someday. Why not?

"That's precisely where your "morality" falls flat on it face."

I have parents Snoof. I don't need you. You'll need to look elsewhere if you want to find someone to spank.

"You appeal to what you perceive as the superior moral arrangement of capitalism as justification for whatever outcomes it produces, even negative ones."

Yeah. Capitalism. It's been an abysmal failure

But, capitalism has nothing to do with it. It's free exchange vs. Forced. Voluntary, vs. Acts carried out through coercion. And when most people refer to capitalism, what they really mean are free markets. I'm a fan of individuals making decisions (good or bad), rather than a thrid party making good or bad decisions on their behalf.

"So are many people in america."

That's true. But the average US household earns $52k per year. the average Cuban household earns $240. You and I both know what the major contributor is to that huge difference.

"They don't want their country back. They just want their FREE STUFF."

I'd compare it to the Mexicans who are pissed off that the southwest (and all it's wealth) are part of the US. They think it should be theirs. It's not that they don't have a point, but it's not going to happen. Instead, do the best with what you have.

The exiles probably aren't going to get their property back. Their relatives who were killed by the regime aren't coming back to life. but they are a part of Cuba, and if it were me I would take pride in being able to bring the country into the 21st century, and help in providing the people of Cuba the lifestyle they've been denied for so long.

And while they're at it, they may just end up making more money than they lost!

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