Friday, 7 August 2015

Housekeeping: Here, Have A Cookie!

Housekeeping: Here, Have A Cookie!

See that top bar? If you're a European visitor, pay attention.

Whenever I log in to my Blogger overview page for this blog, I get a notice telling me that I should double check and confirm that visitors using URL versions of my site from the European Union (such as, totally coincidentally,, should see a message informing them that they are, as it were, getting "cookies" when they visit the site.

The screen capture above shows that when I check the site using an EU URL, the notice automatically comes up. That said, just in case, here is what you should know about this site and its use of cookies on behalf of Google:

This site uses cookies from Google to deliver its services, to personalise ads, and to analyse traffic. Information about your use of this site is shared with Google. By using this site, you agree to its use of cookies.

(If I ever get around to it, I'll create an "Announcements" page, linked on the sidebar below the Comments Policy page, which will permanently link to this post.)

Look at it this way, at least you're not getting a cookie in this context:

(Video from The Matrix, video credit Village Roadshow Pictures/Groucho II Film Partnership/Silverlight/Warner Bros.)

The Maclean's Election Debate

Canada Votes 2015

The Maclean's Election Debate

A Reaction

So apart from the earliest moments, when I was working on my son's bedtime, I watched almost the entire leader's debate put on by Rogers Media, hosted and moderated by Maclean's (with the magazine's political editor Paul Wells serving as moderator).

I shan't go into much detail tonight, and I'm not sure I'll attempt a full analysis over the weekend, but I wanted to touch on a few key things.

I'll discuss them more fully below the fold, but the four key things I wanted to note are:
(1) Elizabeth May
(2) Playing to "Not Lose" vs. Playing to Win
(3) Stephen Harper
(4) The Big Gaffe

Thursday, 6 August 2015

What Do You Do Instead Of Masturbating?

What Do You Do Instead Of Masturbating?

Before proceeding with the content of this post, please be advised that the title is a rhetorical question. Feel free not to answer.

Anyway, just today I was made aware of two videos on YouTube produced by a Christian (I'm presuming a white Evangelical) in which the featured actors try to convince women and men (*), respectively, that they ought not masturbate.

The atheist blogger Libby Anne of Love Joy Feminism at the religious-themed blog aggregate Patheos, provides more critical analysis, but I'd like to focus on just a few lines from the video aimed at men.

Conservative Misgovernment: It's the Economy, Stupid

Canada Votes 2015

Conservative Misgovernment

Episode 1 - It's the Economy, Stupid

"The economy, stupid" was one of the three key messages that Clinton strategist Bill Carville placed on a sign in Clinton's campaign HQ during the 1992 US Presidential election.

The variant of the phrase, with the added "It's", became the unofficial motto of the campaign, and has been much quoted ever since. And, in the US context, although Republican and Libertarian candidates have often adopted the slogan as one of their own, the message is often used as a rebuke by liberals and progressives against Republican (or, generally, right-wing) economic policies, of the sort implemented by George W. Bush.

Here in Canada, our latest federal election, with voting to take place October 19, has just been called. (It will be among the longest federal election campaigns in recent memory, a cynical gambit by the Conservative Party, hoping to win the election by throwing money at it.)

This same Conservative Party has assiduously maintained that its government is the optimal choice when it comes to the Canadian economy. However, aggregate economic data show that this is not the case.

There are two lines of attack against the Conservatives' economic record that I would like to bring up: first, the release of a recent report by economists working for Unifor, which claims to show the "Harper Government"'s [1] numbers in context of Canada's economic performance since the Second World War; and second, the government's inaction in the face of predictable market volatility. Perhaps other lines of attack (and defence) exist, but this is a blog, not a comprehensive analysis.