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bluegreen

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  1. What a keen and penetrating observation! So what's next? Bank notes are often used as currency to buy things I don't like as well, like hard drugs, or votes for the Conservative Party, or kiddie porn. Currency should be criminalized because it's often used as currency. What this whole debate boils down to is that a large minority of Canadians want to imprison the small majority who want to do things to themselves that the above mentioned minority doesn't want them to do to themselves. The oppressive minority dresses up their arguments with circular arguments, and spurious logic, but it doesn't change the underlying facts. These people do not like liberal societies. They desire extraordinary power for government to impose their own peculiar opinions on the majority who disagree with them. They would get along just fine in any religious fundamentalist state, or totalitarian regime, provided the regime concurred with their own opinions about what people should and should not be allowed to do to themselves. I don't think it's very nice to work so hard to promote imprisoning people who disagree with you. I also think it is dangerous, and prejudicial to everybody in our society when harmless minoritys, or even passive majorities should find themselves criminalized on what is essentially a whim.
  2. That's a great threshold for locking people up, 50/50 so we might as well imprison a few tens of thousands of people. As long as there's no upswelling of opposition? How many historical examples of muted protest do we abhor today? What's at the root of the issue is, at what point does a majority, or in this case a plurality have the right to imprison their neighbours? I was under the impression that our shared values state that when peoples activities bring harm to others, we protect ourselves by imposing sanctions. Failing that, the individuals rights to make their own choices trump the opinions of their neighbours. Prison is the ultimate sanction we impose. Murder, violence, theft, all these things we abhor incurr prison sentences (sometimes). How does smoking, possessing, or growing dope fit into this picture? It doesn't. It is the same old story of imprisoning people because we don't like them.
  3. Please, you have to stop being so reticent and shy with your opinions. If you feel something, you should just out and say it.
  4. Hmmm. America doesn't seem to be too embarrassed at standing face to face with Mexico. Incidentally, do you know how the States of Texas and California were founded?
  5. I'll reiterate a prior quote: "Nations have no permanent friends, only permanent interests." It may sound cynical, but it has guided statesmen's actions for all recorded history. In this matter, Canada has no friends, only shared interests. I don't think we share interests with anybody involved, except the Scandinavians who would like to exert sovereign control over 'their' slice of the Arctic, and have a similar strategic, and geographical position to Canada's.
  6. Now Smallc is wrong and right. Everything the Conservatives do IS for personal game . You're right that Russia has many reasons, and we shouldn't like it. They aren't our enemies any more than the americans are. They are competitors in the Arctic though, no less than the americans are. ( And Danes, and Europeans, etc..)
  7. Yes, and No. The Great Game played out between Russia and Britain over Afghanistan was so called because of it's complexity. The stakes here are just as big. Mackay was playing for the camera's, sure, and that's what politicians do. Doesn't mean that there's not something serious underlying his silly grandstanding. These are some of the strategic implications of global warming, and they are now with us. Conservative, Liberal, Green, whatever. The opening moves of this very important 'game' have been made, and 99.9% of Canadians have little true knowledge of what's happening. This is a great forum for having a go at the real issues. Canadians ought to understand a little more about it, because bet your' boots we are going to be asked to invest a lot of treasure, and to formulate complex foreign policies with big implications.
  8. Argus, go to the department of Justice link and look again. Possession of a single pot plant is punishable by a minimum 6 months in prison. If the 'crime' is aggravated by growing the plant in a rental premise, then the minimum goes up to 9 months. This is not for trafficking, it's for growing a plant. If the 'offense' is aggravated by being for the purpose of trafficking, then the jail term goes to a maximum of 14 years. 14 years!!! People who grow a single plant for their mom's MS are now traffickers, and face up to 14 goddam years in prison! I am sickened by this abuse of power. I am outraged! I almost never blog on policy, but I stayed up late last night : Visit My Website My guess is, that since your' defense of the policy is based upon a mistaken assumption, that you will realize that no matter what you think about the wisdom of people smoking pot, you will agree that this is a draconian punishment, that is utterly unwarranted. All kinds of good people will spend time in jail, and YOU and I will foot the bill, while destroying their lives.
  9. These links are pretty dated. Digging up links on long dead and dated political talks does not support a case that Russia is anything other than a competitor. Please note that access to Afghanistan was withdrawn long ago. Russia has been pressuring their central asian neighbours to close the US bases granted in the early days of the NATO-Afghan conflict, and those neighbours have been complying. The fact that Bear's are crossing the Arctic again is a small part in Russias changed stance towards NATO. It is clear that Russia deems NATO to be a strategic threat to their interests, (and incidentally, based upon NATO behaviour, from their perspective they are absolutely correct). Whatever Party is in power in Canada, there is going to be some form of conflict over arctic resources. Whether their will be a military conflict, or whether it will be contained in the international courts, and diplomatic venues remains to be seen. Every party with any sort of claim, including Canada will be pressing their claims as far as they can. There's probably a ton of loot up for grabs, and as a pundit once said, 'Nations have no permanent friends, just permanent interests.' One thing is certain, that only those nations with the ability to project power into the Arctic will have any serious wins in the conflict. Russia is sensibly flexing thier muscles. Bush's response has been heard. Canada has staked her claim. Denmark likewise. Europe's interest is in an open water route to Asia, and they have made this interest plain. That's just 'our' arctic. Scandinavia is also establishing their joint posture, because their interests do not precisely align with the US, or Europe. I guess that they would be our best friends in this tug of war. So I'll throw out a question for y'all. Is it worth competing with the big boys in this conflict? Does what's at stake justify the risks, and treasure required to play this century's "Great Game"?
  10. That's a weird stance to take. Only profitable industries and companies should get subsidized? Why should my money go to them? They already have all they need. What the hell is so deserving about mining, oil, and gas companies, that earn a profit based on world commodity prices, and access to publicly owned resources that they happened to get their mitts on first? There are very damned few cases where subsidies should go to privately or publicly owned companies. I have owned and operated manufacturing businesses for most of my adult life. I accept that when I invest my dough, I take risks. If I fail to manage them properly, then I lose my dough. Them's the breaks. If I go bust, it's not like all the assets disappear. The plant, Inventory, staff, and probably much of the intellectual property pass into fresh hands. I lose my equity, some of my creditors get stung. They should have done their homework better. If circumstances are such that all reasonable, and prudent measures could not stave off the problem. If the business was, and is sound, but credit dried up, or a truly extraodinary event occured then a case could be made for support. It should be conditional, and the public should earn a handsome return for bailing out the troubled firm, but it is conceivable that this should happen. The only reason it would be justified is if the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. In other words, the firm is well managed, and society will lose out if it stops functioning in it's current form. I definitely don't agree with subsidizing resource companies though. Screw them. The resources aren't going anywhere, and the only real management skills required in the first place are in managing external risks. By definition, if they need help to survive, they failed in their only real management task. Bye Bye equity, bring on the new owners.
  11. How about a bill to criminalize living sheltered lonely asocial lives? If you live alone, and don't know anybody, then why should you care if other people want to smoke dope? I really wonder why you want to put people in prison who never have, and never will do you any harm?
  12. I just did a quick google, and found: http://communities.canada.com/calgaryheral.../28/286815.aspx here's a very well supported condemnation of the new act by the director of the John Howard society: http://johnhowardsociety.blogspot.com/2009...o-suppress.html It should really be obvious that the more criminal sanctions are enacted against tiny producers of dope, the more likely people are to stop growing their own, and resort to the black market. No sanctions will stop, or even slow down commercial production. It is axiomatic that increased sanctions will improve the profit margins of commercial grow ops. Gangsters have ever increasing cash flows, and the gang wars over highly profitable territories get bloodier. What an enormous boondoggle. If small scale production for personal use were legalized, or even decriminalized then the domestic market for gangsters would be reduced to a trickle. Most people who buy dope today would probably rather not pay high prices to support gangsters. Even if demand did rise a bit, so what? We would pull BILLIONS of dollars out of the gangsters pockets, and the gangs would be reduced to dealing unpopular drugs worth a tiny fraction of the dope market. Fancy that, castrating the gangs by allowing people the freedom to do what they want with their own bodies. Stupid social conservative jackasses, screwing up our cities, and creating massive profits for organized criminals so they can look tough on crime.
  13. Outrageous! This in a country where a majority of the populace would like to see dope decriminalized! This conservative Party has absolutely nothing to do with libertarian principles. Less regulation for business, more chains for the citizenry. Fill the prisons, and free businesses. No intellectual rigour there.
  14. Just in passing, I followed your' link, and in my estimation, every single country on the top 39 list has at least some conventional threat facing them, which would possibly justify their level of armament. There is not a single country on the list which is in as safe a position as we are, provided you accept the proviso that the USA poses no military threat to Canada. Even if the US did pose such a threat, we would be better served by massively stockpiling small arms than conventional force upgrades.
  15. Mexico hardly has us beat. They cannot reach us, and we cannot reach them. There are very very few nations with the ability to project power in any significant way. Those which pose a credible threat to Canada currently number one. Russia. Hardly a credible threat in the face of NATO, and they have proven that they are not stupid enough to fry the whole planet in their imperial quest. Why do we need more military? So we can project power? It is useless to have a little bit of power of this sort. Either you have enough to thump someone big time, or you don't. It takes air, sea, land, amphibious, Intelligence, and logistical muscle to project power. For Canada to acquire this mix would cost us a vast sum of treasure. And for what end? So we could seize stuff that we already have plenty of? So we could assist another would be Imperial power to seize stuff? So, for the forseeable future our conventional physical security is threatened by no-one other than a foe that we have trained to fight, against whom we have an enormous military alliance beside us. So long as we constrain the spread of strategic weapons, like nuclear tipped ICBM's, (Part of the reason we aren't a nuclear power) then there is little strategic threat, because of our membership in NATO. Are we children that we should waste treasure on having a bigger dick than Mexico, or Japan? If it means nothing in practical terms, then that's what we should spend on it, nothing. Posturing, and grandstanding is what it would amount to. What we should do, is fulfill our basic role within NATO, which is to share the Air defense in the North, and East, (NORAD), and help maintain coalition naval superiority off all three coasts. No more, no less.
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