#CalgaryStrong Song

THANKS Thanks Thanks to everyone pitching in to clean up and rebuild Calgary.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

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Ireland – please return MY land

Finally.

It seems the University of Saskatchewan is — bit-by-bit — returning land to the rightful owners. Descendants of Aboriginal peoples. 🙂

U Sask

The Department of Native Studies was celebrating June 12th. I enjoyed a free drink (Diet Coke) and traditional food (bacon wrapped asparagus and Samosas).

I’m celebrating too.

With this precedent, I’m planning to claim 4 farms in Ireland.

All 4 of my Grandparents are from Ireland. All were wrongly displaced, forced into economic migration to the Prison Colony of southern Alberta.

Their former properties are rightfully MINE.

… I’d like to also claim my Grandparent’s descendent’s properties, some of it in Scotland. But that would be silly. Why would anyone think I’d have any rights to claim property from so long ago?

Republicans lie 3 times more than Democrats

This study sounds about right to me.

Republicans and supporters of Republicans are more calculating, deliberate and astonishingly blatant in their lying.

A leading media fact-checking organization rates Republicans as less trustworthy than Democrats, according to a new study by the Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA) at George Mason University.

The study finds that PolitiFact.com has rated Republican claims as false three times as often as Democratic claims during President Obama’s second term. Republicans continue to get worse marks in recent weeks, despite controversies over Obama administration statements on Benghazi, the IRS and the AP.

Study: Media Fact-Checker Says Republicans Lie More

LiarsThe

related – Eric Ostermeier on February 10, 2011PolitiFact Rates Republican Statements as False at 3 Times the Rate of Democrats

Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, John Boehner, Mike Pence, and the National Republican Congressional Committee were the worst offenders in that study.

Republicans lie plenty.

Got it.

Unfortunately the less dishonest Democrats aren’t able to do much for the average American. Obama looks far more like a Republican than a Democrat to me.

Off the Charts: Under Obama, Stocks Do Better

on 401(k) fees …

For my American friends.

Question: How much money are you paying in 401(k) fees?

Answer: Have you thought about buying a home lately?

That’s right. According to Robert Hiltonsmith at Demos, a New York based think tank, we could purchase a residence with the amount of money the financial services and retirement industries siphon out of our 401(k) savings over the course of our careers. His recently released report, The Retirement Savings Drain, calculates that the average household will pay almost $155,000 over the course of a lifetime for the privilege of saving their own money, just slightly under the median price of a previously occupied home in the United States, according to the National Association of Realtors.

“There is ample evidence that these fees are excessive,” Hiltonsmith writes. His evidence: The costs of running a traditional pension is significantly less than that of administering a 401(k). …

Forbes – More Bad News About 401(k) Fees

WMAssets-Hidden-Fees1

One example …

401(k)Fees

via Frontline – The Retirement Gamble.

The Kill Team: How U.S. Soldiers in Afghanistan Murdered Innocent Civilians

From a 2011 article by Rolling Stone:

… after six hard months soldiering in Afghanistan, a group of American infantrymen reached a momentous decision: It was finally time to kill a haji.

Among the men of Bravo Company, the notion of killing an Afghan civilian had been the subject of countless conversations, during lunchtime chats and late-night bull sessions. For weeks, they had weighed the ethics of bagging “savages” and debated the probability of getting caught. Some of them agonized over the idea; others were gung-ho from the start. But not long after the New Year, as winter descended on the arid plains of Kandahar Province, they agreed to stop talking and actually pull the trigger. …

read more

It’s horrific.

At the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival here’s the trailer for Best Documentary Feature.

I mention this because the USA is just now considering entering into two more wars. Syria and Iran.

So far even John (“maybe 100” years in Iraq) McCain has not called for boots on the ground.

Keep it that way.

The Wire – season 2

The second season, along with its ongoing examination of the drug problem and its effect on the urban poor, examines the plight of the blue-collar urban working class as exemplified by stevedores in the city port, as some of them get caught up in smuggling drugs and other contraband inside the containers that their port receives. …

The Wire (season 2)

Click PLAY or watch the opening on YouTube.

I’d never thought much about ports or stevedores before watching this series. Fascinating subculture.

On to season 3.

Though that season was 10yrs ago, the issues are still very contemporary.

What measures should law enforcement be allowed to catch and deter crime?

Boston GlobeSurveillance cameras a tool for deterrence:

GOOD CAMERA work played a key role in the identification of the suspects in Monday’s bombings. But the reliance on store-mounted cameras and cellphone video from the public suggests that Boston Police could benefit from updating their approach to surveillance cameras — particularly by placing cameras more systematically at sporting events and other locations where large numbers of people gather. …

more security, less privacy

Like pretty much everyone, I’m pissed off.

Pissed off that two yahoos had the freedom to maim and kill innocents.

Martin

I, for one, am willing to have less freedom in exchange for more security.

Yes I know that authorities will abuse that power. I’m willing to chance it.

More cameras. More intercept of communication.

Drones I’m less certain about. But probably yes to drone surveillance, as well.

Martin Richard’s Family ‘Applauds’ Boston’s Heroes