I Voted NDP by Mail

As I was going to be out of town on Alberta election day — May 29, 2023 — I voted by mail. Early.

And It was easy to vote by mail. I could write in the candidate running in my riding, or the Party.

I was voting against the unelected premier Danielle Smith as she’s untrustworthy and a rightwing whacko. The NDP is the only alternative that MIGHT form the next government so I voted for Rachel Notley.

I joined the provincial Party, as well.

IF unelected whacko Danielle Smith manages to lose in historically conservative Alberta, she’ll certainly claim a BIG LIE as she’s a fan of Trump and DeSantis.

Of course Trump voted by mail multiple times in recent years, while simultaneously claiming mail fraud in any state he lost. 😀

Here’s my putting my ballot in the mailbox.

Carbon Capture in 2023

Optimists like me keep hoping smart people will figure out how to start reducing the CO2 in the atmosphere.

There is hope.

And Carbon Capture looks to be a huge future business. Young people should be studying this technology in University.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

WHY so much poverty in the USA?

I feel the GOP USA has only one overriding goal ➙ make the rich, richer.

To that end they don’t want to improve education, health care, nor raise the minimum wage.

Greedy Americans are why there’s so much poverty in the most affluent nation of the world.

Green River, Utah

The Pulitzer Prize–winning, bestselling author of Evicted, Matthew Desmond, reimagines the debate on poverty, making a new and bracing argument about why it persists in America: because the rest of us benefit from it.

The United States, the richest country on earth, has more poverty than any other advanced democracy.


Why does this land of plenty allow one in every eight of its children to go without basic necessities, permit scores of its citizens to live and die on the streets, and authorize its corporations to pay poverty wages? …

Private opulence, public squalor: How the U.S. helps the rich and hurts the poor

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

My First Dentures … 🦷

I now have 2 dentures.

The upper looks good. And is not all that uncomfortable. It does require some concentration to speak clearly. And I do have to eat … differently.

The bottom is larger and much less comfortable. I’m hoping it gets better seated over time. The denturist made some adjustments after a couple of weeks. That has helped. Some.

I’ll go back again in 6 months.

My remaining REAL bottom teeth are in rough shape, as well. I’ll probably have to do something with them in the next couple of years.

One downside with dentures is that you must remove and clean them at night. Put them back in place in the morning.

I do recommend my Denturist Vlad Dumbrava. FutureSmiles, Calgary. Two locations.

Vlad guesstimated the total work at about CAD $3000 — and that Alberta government insurance for Seniors of low income would cover about $2500. That sounded GREAT to me.

He also agreed to rush the top temporary denture so I could travel. And install the other denture on my return to Calgary.

Final ACTUAL cost to me: $648.

I had 5 teeth extracted, as well, in order to make room for the dentures. Those seems to have been 100% covered by my insurance.

Hopefully I can learn to live with dentures. I’m still considering it an experiment.

There are other more expensive options.

The World Needs MORE People

In 1798, Thomas Malthus predicted a global overpopulation apocalypse.

I’ve always assumed he was right. That more people meant more pollution and — ultimately — depletion of fixed resources.

But Professor Galloway argues the opposite:

  • population density has no correlation with food insecurity
  • the number of people older than 80 is expected to increase sixfold by 2100
  • while being less productive, seniors also consume substantially more public resources
  • USA already spends 40% of total tax dollars on people 65 and up

China, Japan, Germany, Italy, Greece, Portugal, and many Eastern European nations are shrinking in 2023. Researchers project the global population will peak in 2064.

Net population growth requires a fertility rate slightly greater than two births per woman. America’s fertility rate is 1.8; the average for high income countries. And dropping.

It’s increasingly difficult for young people to be able to afford to get married, buy a house, and have kids.

The obvious solution is to increase immigration of young people. Galloway feels increased immigration still won’t be enough to solve the problem.

Read the full post:

More Babies

On the Plain of Snakes by Paul Theroux

Paul Theroux is a jerk — but still my favourite travel writer of all time.

He’s age-81 as I post. Still going strong.

Theroux says he’s mellowed. And I’d admit his most recent books are much more positive than his scathing critiques of the past.

In 2015, he published “Deep South” detailing four road trips through the southern states of the United States. Excellent.

In 2019 he published On the Plain of Snakes: A Mexican Journey, his account of his extensive travels in his own car throughout Mexico.

In some ways it was a continuation of his Deep South investigation.

Near the start he recaps the deaths and damage done by the drug trade. The insatiable American market. The brutal competition in Mexico to supply it.

He does a terrific overview of illegal immigration before the pandemic. Mexico a net zero. Now mostly more desperate folks from Central America as well as many from India, the Caribbean, and even China.

Over the decades it’s gotten more and more difficult to cross the border illegally. And not because of any wall. Walls are considered a joke in Mexico.

In another instant, his comments come across as self-serving, as when he longs for a simpler Mexico with “inexpensive meals that were delicious, cheap motels that were comfortable, and friendly people who, out of politeness, seldom complained to outsiders of their dire circumstances: poor pay, criminal gangs, a country without good health care or pensions, crooked police, cruel soldiers, and a government indifferent to the plight of most citizens.” …

I was amused to read of all the time Paul paid bribes to crooked cops. An conspicuous car with Massachusetts licence plates — a sitting duck.

Theroux is mostly critical of ReTrumplicans. I like that too, of course.

“The per capita income in Oaxaca is the same as in Kenya and Bangladesh,” Theroux says.

“You’re dealing with people who have very little money and get very little help from the government. But they have a great culture they’re very proud of, their family values are very strong, and they’re very self-sufficient and creative. They mend their clothes; they fix their shoes; they’re actually able to take something that’s broken and repair it; they have a lot of cottage industries.

I admire that, and I admire the ones who pick up and go to the border. Most of the people I’ve met who crossed the border just wanted to earn some money to send back and then go home; they weren’t here to go on welfare or be the parasites they’re identified as.”

In fact, Theroux says, “the book was inspired by everything that Donald Trump and other people were saying during the presidential campaign about Mexico, Mexicans, and the border—their uninformed opinions and stereotypes.”

He adds, “One of the great reasons for traveling is to destroy stereotypes, to see people and things as they really are, to see the dynamics and the complexity of a country. As soon as he started saying things like, ‘There’s too many of them, they’re coming over the border, they’re rapists,’ I had a great reason for taking a year or two to get to the bottom of it.” …

Publisher’s Weekly interview

Personally, I’ve given up on travel in Mexico though I had a condo there for 20 years.

It’s gotten more expensive for the tourist. And on recent trips I found it too American. I’d rather go to Nepal.

However, reading this book has sparked some interest in getting to the far south of Mexico. I’ve never been.

Happy November 2nd 🎈

I’m 65 years young today.

Give me ALL the pensions. 😀

Last year I was in Lisbon for 64.

For the 62nd I was in Nepal.

53rd was in Porto, Portugal.

I’m usually travelling the world on my birthday.

30 years ago I decided on my far-from-typical philosophy.

Life is short. Too short to waste working. Do what you want.

Financially my plan was to retire” from age 33 to 65 — then go back to work full-time when I’m no good for anything else. At age-65. Today.

I can do that as a Gymnastics coach. There are plenty of elderly full-time Gymnastics coaches.

Sounded a brilliant plan. But I think I’ll put off un-retirement for a while longer.

Perhaps until I’m medically tied down.

All the best from Liverpool, England. I’m here for the World Gymnastics Championships.

What’s next? … I’m researching sunny European hiking destinations. Azores? Canary Islands?

Xi Jinping now Dictator for Life

One man will now decide whether or not China invades Taiwan.

That could lead to a World War.

It’s very possible that the dictator will need something to distract the population as Covid continues to drag down the economy.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Economist was at the Party Congress.

Xi Jinping has no interest in succession planning

Dopesick (miniseries)

Dopesick is based on the non-fiction book Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America by Beth Macy. …

At the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards, the series received fourteen nominations …

Dopesick focuses on “the epicenter of America’s struggle with opioid addiction” across the U.S., on how individuals and families are affected by it, on the alleged conflicts of interest involving Purdue Pharma and various government agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration and the United States Department of Justice, and finally, on the legal case against Purdue Pharma and their development, testing and marketing of the drug OxyContin. …

Michael Keaton is great as Dr. Samuel Finnix.

Rotten Tomatoes 88% approval.

It’s non-linear but — happily — not confusing as the years flip past as it switches on the timeline.

There’s no question the Sackler family and Purdue Pharma are EVIL.

House Dems, GOP Agree: Sacklers, Purdue Pharma ‘Sickening’
— “I’m not sure I’m aware of any family in America that’s more evil than yours”

Purdue / Sackers EVIL

On October 21, 2020, it was reported that Purdue had reached a settlement potentially worth $8.3 billion, admitting that it “knowingly and intentionally conspired and agreed with others to aid and abet” doctors dispensing medication “without a legitimate medical purpose.” Members of the Sackler family will additionally pay US$225 million and the company will close.

Some state attorneys general protested the plan. In March 2021, the United States House of Representatives introduced a bill that would stop the bankruptcy judge in the case from granting members of the Sackler family legal immunity during the bankruptcy proceedings.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.