Mayor Ford

I don’t think I’ll ever forget mayoral candidate Chow berating former Mayor Ford, replaced by Councillor Kelley, (despite the Municipal Elections Act 2006) as all candidates competing to be Mayor in December 2014 spoke on stage in a televised debate. In those days the media reports accusing him of racism, sexism and drug taking seemed to support Ms. Chow’s condemning of Mr. Ford. In all journalistic reports Councillor Kelly appeared as a kind of saviour in replacing Mr. Ford, and the majority of councillors who chose Mr. Kelly were praised despite their acting against the strictures of the City of Toronto Act 2006. In those days other councillors kept appearing on television as a sanctimonious contrast to the unseemliness of their former council leader; like Mr. Kelly they too seemed to be doing the right thing in reminding voters, “the gullible”, of the mess Mr. Ford had made of Toronto’s government. Today March 22, Holly Week 2016 Mayor Ford is no longer “half mayor” “ Councillor Kelley presumably the other half. Today Mayor Ford is just the former Mayor of Toronto.

Tiny Man with the Big Voice at the Derby

Then

Short gentleman with the booming voice
You’d run up to the stage like a batter to the plate
Beaming as though the whole world loved you
Never complaining as they goosed you off the floor
When you hit the “Oklahoma” chorus.

 

After

Hey! I haven’t seen you in ten or fifteen years.
You probably don’t even recognize me.
And you, scarcely able to step six inches at a time
Even with canes,
Your poor long jaw almost too heavy for your tiny legs.
And your coat’s hangin’ on one button,
Half your flesh stopping the New Year air.

 

Trump’s Gang

Since they started writing against Donald Trump’s ranting rather cool McLuhan esq discombobulated vitriol; never trying to help readers better understand his words or his intent, always making what he says seem divisively nonsensical, they’ve jabbed his supporters subtly at first but with the same devastating consistency as they paraphrased Mr. Trump’s speeches always implying that they were much smarter and more literate than he. Even pieces that seemed finally to accept his candidacy as inevitable came the unmistakable digs at his supporters many of whom they’ve said again and again are poorly informed and without college degrees. Today they continue separating the poorly educated from the better informed and better educated, now characterizing these poorly educated Trumpists as not just uneducated but violently polluting the political process with their frightening behaviour.

Revenant

For days I couldn’t get the movie title “Revenant”  off my mind. Then one morning I picked my old copy of Charles Baudelaire‘s Les Fleurs du Mal (1868) off the shelf, found by chance and translated

“Le Revenant”

Looking like an angel to the wild eyed
I will enter your lair,
Gliding about you silently
With other shadows of the night.

To you my dark one
I’ll give kisses cold as the moon
And caresses of serpents
Slithering about a ditch.

And as morning’s greyish haze arrives
In the place where I did lie
That iron cold night,
You’ll find an empty space.

For as others may out of tenderness
Revere your vitality and your youth,
I would rule by fear.

 

Bailouts, Debt and Benghazi

And now it’s March 10, 2016 it’s nearly 2 years since the writing of what follows, and New Zealand’s surprised by lowering its central bank rate, and Canada’s central banker’s kept Canada’s central interest rate at .05%; and here in North America investors keep bond yields low with plenty of money sloshing around to revive Canadian and U.S.stock markets and renew talk of the raging stock market bull, and maintain record high house prices here in Canada.

Today is May 13 and I just reread this May 8 blogspot post about the 2008 post. Yesterday May 12, 2014 the Dow Jones stock average reached another all time height after Ms. Yellan had reminded investors last week that interest rates would not be returning to normal soon because the U.S./world economy was still regaining its strength. I think its strange that no one’s complaining all that vigorously about stocks reaching record heights during the recession almost as bad as the 1930′s great depression. Even those mean old Republicans seem more concerned about the real motives behind the attackers on the U.S. embassy in Benghazi than the fiscal or monetary policies that are contributing to the U.S. national debt.

May 8, 2014

I just revisited the bit below that I must have written some time in 2008 amidst the failure of a large U.S. bank, the precipitous decline of North American stock markets, and world oil prices peaking at $147 per barrel, and dire warnings about the coming world-wide depressionary recession almost as bad as the 1930’s depression according to Mr. Bernanke student of that depression, yet still I am not certain that I’ve witnessed evidence of that sudden cataclysmic world-wide recession resembling the great depression. The only possible resemblance to that deflationary time was the 2008 market collapse, but which unlike the crash of 1929 led to a rather sharp rebound to new highs. And still as in the 2008 warnings of deflation living expenses keep rising while at the same time both in Canada and the U.S. federal money chiefs keep warning of impending deflation.

Bailouts 2008

On October 4, 2008 the United States congress with encouragement from senatorsDemocrat Obama and Republican McCain passed the $700 billion Paulson-Bernanke bailout. Today October 29, 2008 markets await another bailout contribution to help fend off a world wide recession which has not yet materialized in terms of several consecutive quarters of negative growth, certainly not with Russia ratcheting down its GDP growth forecast to 7.3 for 2008. To date there is little anecdotal or statistical evidence of world wide recession; though media types ignoring continued population, and money growth warn of world wide deflation based on oil prices having descended some $85. since their July, 2008 peak, which seem poised to rise again with copper prices and the growing money supply. Nothing is said about the doubling of basic foodstuffs prices since last year, the rise of water rates by 9%, and the increasing charges for garbage removal in the Greater Toronto Area, or the recent world wide food riots resulting from corn, wheat, and rice scarcity in poor countries. As the money supply grows with U.S. inspired bailouts we are told to fear deflation in hopes that fear of deflation may not cause us to fear inflation so much that we help create it by trying to beat it with wage and price increases.

 

Infrastructure Anyone

I wrote what follows just about when President Obama was celebrating the most expensive inauguration in American history. I had been hearing him talking about reviving the U.S. economy by spending money on infrastructure which today keeps being offered in Canada as a way of improving Canada’s economy. But as usual no one but Donald Trump says anything about how Asian manufacturing of the goods imported into the West is diminishing the West’s capital. Today David Dodge now working for an investment company grudgingly accepts his BNN interviewer’s mention of infrastructure as a way of improving Canada’s GDP. But Mr. Dodge also talks about culture and of bringing creative people into Canada, and that old chestnut from the 70’s improving productivity, but never mentions our selling off steel and manufacturing companies like Massey Ferguson, and retailers like The Bay, Eatons and Simpsons. And no one: financial expert, journalist, politician or David Dodge has said anything about the sale of Canada’s Crown Corporation when its stock got cheap to that Colorado man from Sun Oil, Rick George.

Tuesday, 6 January, 2009
Infrastructure, Credit, Internet

Infrastructure now includes broadband and computer/internet systems.

Credit crunch means difficulty obtaining investment for broadband computer Internet companies.

Current economic troubles are the result of the third major oil shock as rising energy prices act as a tax on spending/consumption leading to tight credit. When the campaign for infrastructure renewal is over, crumbling bridges, school buildings and pot holes will remain while technology will maintain its shiny transparency.

Since talk of a credit crunch started in September only two commentators mentioned the possibility that the recent climb in oil prices have had an influence on our declining economies, and one of these was shouted down with talk of the shortage of credit alone as the cause of our economic woes and not increasing energy costs.

The Commonweal

There are two things that I have difficulty believing and that is that people who write about racism do so because they wish to improve social equality which to me means promoting justice. For media writers instances of injustice provide opportunities to increase their readers by making it seem that the people they call racists have caused this injustice while they themselves are doing good in spotting and criticising it, reminding me of the people we used to call “browners” who snitched to the teacher about the bad things that they the good kids saw the bad kids do.

The other thing that I have difficulty believing is that the people who talk on television about public transportation, especially city Toronto politicians, know from experience how to improve the efficiency of public transportation: the TTC. The recent nearly halving the cost of Metrolinx fare to Pearson airport because too few of the public were using this public facility also convinces me that Ontario MP’s like their municipal counterparts are out of touch with public transit and the lives of the commons and what it can afford to pay for transportation.