Wednesday, March 28, 2012

'Harper Government' - The Pig Is In The Shredder

Always go to other peoples funerals, otherwise they won't go to yours.
Yogi Berra, The Yogi Book, p. 73

Well here we are dear reader. Starting tomorrow, the last shreds of the Canada that you have always known, will over the next few years, be gone forever. The Wee Jimmy provided all the symbolism that any rational, aware and thinking person required. There was the great man in a local Aldo shoe store getting his brand new pair of made in Asia, by sweated under paid labour, budget (?) shoes. The Oracle of Ottawa never wears made in Asia shoes. He only wears made in Canada shoes. Now if the wee minister was at Mark's Work Wearhouse getting himself a nice sensible pair of Terra work shoes, that are literally hand made in Canada, we could all have something to look forward to in that symbolic act.   

Wee Jimmy delivers Manifest Destiny...

Yes sir, the Conservatives are going to bring you their sacred dream, starting tomorrow. Government is going to be getting out of the business of government. Starting tomorrow you to will have the most treasured and coveted right of every Conservative; the right to fail all on your own. And after all the measures start kicking in on this great trek of personal liberation, we will all be but  guaranteed this most sure and sacred result. As the Oracle of Ottawa warned early and often in this humble blog, you will now work longer, pay more and eventually, maybe, if you don't die, get less. Which really exposes a very interesting paradox. You would think that if capitalism and free unregulated markets are so goddamn awesome, we should be expecting to have the retirement age lowered to age 60? Gee, the Oracle of Ottawa wonders if any one from the newly envigorated NDP will bring this up, when the front bench of the 'Harper Government' brain dead morons start on their capitalism and free markets are awesome kick. 

Starve, kill, privatize. That is the secret game plan. You will not have a democracy very long without a dedicated Civil Service. Besides, democracy with the right of free and collective bargaining and an open  level of active social discourse is just so inconvenient, isn't it? Especially when those bastard liberals (i. e. them...) with their big union bosses start throwing numbers around... Just fire the lot of the smug Eastern cock-suckers! Oh yes, you can be assured that many civil servants will be without a job after tomorrow. But after about two to six weeks after their terminations, they will be getting the call from the designated Alberta contractor, offering them their old jobs back at a little over minimum wage! Wait for it... Tomorrow around six o'clock the wee ministers cheap Asian shoes will be doing their job, biting like hell.

Whoa - Wee Jimmy! Not too heavy on that Lady Grecian, every body will think you are Stockwell Day!!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

NDP Convention - Damn Near Killed Me!

Were lost, but were making good time!
Yogi Berra, The Yogi Book, p. 51

Oh my! The Oracle of Ottawa has been so busy as of late. He has been so deeply into the ever ongoing "Thinking About Thinking Project" that the usual amount of missives to this humble blog have been missing as of late. All the Oracle of Ottawa can say is that the vein in progress has been very rich indeed. But the events of and at the recent NDP Leadership Convention so moved the Oracle that he just felt that Hunter S. Thompson obsession to share all his thoughts and other mental gibberish.

The Next One?
To tell the truth, the Oracle of Ottawa was expecting the worst from the recent NDP hoe-down, truth be told. And although I felt the urge to write about it often, I was afraid that I would jinx it. It was late Saturday afternoon on the way back to the secure bunker in Ottawa-South from the highly coveted Saturday routine that the Oracle of Ottawa heard on the radio station of the "state broadcaster" the CBC, that the third ballot was being jammed by unknown dark, evil and nefarious forces. No doubt originating from somewhere in Monotonous, Montana and / or the China Telegraph and Telephone Company at the behest of the "dark forces" presently being investigated by Elections Canada...

Seated in front of the Sony EX620-40HD in all the splendor of the HD broadcasting from the CBC, the Oracle was catching from the end of the third ballot. The Oracle of Ottawa was very happy with four of the last five candidates. All the Oracle of Ottawa knew is who he did not want to win! And The opinions of Ed Broadbent and whats her name be damned! That short, or rather vertically challenged  little weasel, you know who, really creeped the Oracle of Ottawa out! And the Oracle is very well versed in his Old Testament stories of death bed blessings, don't ya know!! And he was having none of it!

Nathan Cullen's bed time reading....
 But, not to worry, that young Nathan Cullen saved the day! In a move right out of  The Prince, Nathan released his delegates to their own wishes and desires. This was the equivalent of cutting one second place candidates throat ear from ear! And the way he smiled as he did it, well the Oracle of Ottawa was mightily impressed! It has been decades since the Oracle has witnessed politics played so ruthlessly and perfect...Now that nice Tom whats his name is head of the NDP. What a relief! Now ask yourself this dear reader; Tom and Steve meet in a back alley in the wrong end of Montreal.. Who do you think is the one who is going to walk out? Yeah... Me too! It is going to be impossible to "attack ad" a guy whose nick name is "Tom The Bomb" ! And can you imagine how Question Period is going to go from now on? It is just going to be total heaven!

President Barack Obama....
Now this Nathan Cullen lad doesn't fool the Oracle of Ottawa for a moment. It's simply because I know about such things. Old Nathan has had a most privileged education. You don't learn to speak like that at an Ontario Public school, no sir. This guy is a Catholic? And he went to a Jesuit High School. How is the Oracle of Ottawa doing?  He has more than one university degree. Am I right. Really... He is really trying to keep the beacons under the bushel, just like that upstart from Old Montreal did back in the 1960's... But of course it will all come out at just the right time won't it?

Who knew? Barack Obama comes in white!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Isn't Lenin Entitled?

Modern capitalist society is the hiding place of numerous cases of poverty and oppression.
Vladimir Lenin, The Lenin Anthology (Robert C. Tucker), On The Emancipation Of Women, p. 682

Even though you may get to live as long as the Oracle of Ottawa, and learn very many things, you will discover, often, that you will never be close to knowing everything. This was all brought home to the Oracle of Ottawa on Friday last while reading The Globe And Mail. On page A3 there was an excellent piece by Mark MacKinnon, the Moscow correspondent,  on the issue of what to do with the remains of Vladimir Lenin! It was a fascinating piece and I read the whole thing.

Lenin - 1919

It is hard for us in the West to even begin to understand the reasons, let alone the logic, of having a dead man on permanent display  since 1924! It is all a bit too creepy. But for those who know of such things, Lenin was no ordinary man, love him, or hate him. This guy took a backward, rotten, country steeped in a tradition of feudalism and in the space of much less than a century of his death launched it on a course to the position of one of the greatest powers on Earth. Now, being on that tight of a schedule, the mere fact that you will up to your elbows in blood is pretty much accepted as a given.

Lenin's Mom -
Maria Alexandrovna Ulyanova

It has been often remarked by the Soviet dissidents that there is a curse upon Russia as long as Lenin remains unburied. I believe I read that somewhere deep in Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's  The Gulag  Archipelago but I can't be sure, the 1980's is somehow, now a very long time ago. It has been from that time that somehow, we in the West, were convinced that it was Lenin himself that left directions for his body to be preserved for ever on public display. The reality of this myth is very far from the truth.

Mark MacKinnon reveals that Lenin's actual wish upon his death was to  be buried beside his mother in Saint Petersburg! The Oracle of Ottawa has to admit that he was totally blown away by that revelation. What is more natural for a son to wish to be buried beside his mother? Isn't Lenin entitled to his dying wish? Once we thought it was the curse of the czars that hung over Russia. Perhaps it is time to consider that it may the curse of Lenin, for not granting him his only dying wish.

Let Lenin go home to his Mom!! Gee whiz he has given enough at the office. Isn't he entitled to his dying wish?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Symbolism Of Gerry "The Ditz" Ritz

The totalitarian state can never be become completely invulnerable or stamp out critical thought altogether. It may appear all-powerful, as it dominates all aspects of life, but is also weak insomuch as any crack in the ideological monolith is a threat to its existence.
Leszek Kolakowski, Main Currents Of Marxism, Volume III, p. 860

The Oracle of Ottawa had intended to write this bit much earlier. But I had trouble finding out which high school Gerry "The Ditz" Ritz graduated from. So dear reader you can also readily understand why I cannot find any record of even undergraduate University education. Why it seems clear that the Minister is the second dumbest hay seed yokel to ever be a Minister of State in the history of Canada! It would seem that Jethro Bodine had more "book learning", since we all know that that Jethro got to the astounding heights of the sixth grade...

Gerry - The Ditz....

We all know the history of recent events. The venerable Canadian Wheat Board is all but toast. The august Minister in the mere presence of the great man Gerry "The Ditz" Ritz laughed off the threatened coming and present events, such as Canada's loss of control of its food supply to shady foreign interests, as raised in many statements in the House of Commons, by individuals of the Opposition, that as a class,  were on average ten times smarter and more informed then the present Minister. The Minister easily pushed aside all criticism, it was really easy, he did not even understand the questions!

Now of course the harsh reality of our dark future is upon us. The largest Canadian Agriculture business in Canada, Viterra, is now a target of a hostile take-over by one megalithic and somewhat shady Glencore! The real interesting bit here is that Glencore is the rebirth of the creature created by one Marc Rich. And real further interesting bit is the successor one Ivan Glasenberg.How ironic is that dear reader? It also seems that this offshore based entity has past problems with bribery of government officials from Africa to the heart of the European Union! Now that is real brass. If you are a western grain farmer, the Oracle of Ottawa strongly suggests that you don't read down all the links, it will really ruin your day and make you very upset...

Perhaps it is time to send in the "double naught" spies from CSIS and get to the real bottom of this before it too late....

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Signalling At Ottawa Public Library

In the process of experimentation there are endless opportunities for error, and the free search for truth therefore involves friction and waste.
L. T. Hobhouse, Liberalism, p. 59

Could you imagine the uproar in the City of Walmart, er, ah, the City of Ottawa if a person with a graduate degree in Library Science was promoted to the position of Chief Urban Planner for the City of Ottawa!? Why all the land rapers and soulless corporate house flipping whores would be in a totally catatonic state. But when a want'a be failed urban planner (?) gets set up as the replacement for the retiring Head Librarian of the the venerable Ottawa Public Library, well you just get the contractor spin doctors out and put the story into the Sunday edition of the skanky Ottawa Citizen! Nobody reads the Ottawa Citizen, especially on Sunday... You only buy the Ottawa Citizen for the TV guide... (and the cat box and bird cage....)

A library is not a "business"...
 For the first time since the utterly disastrous amalgamation of the City of Ottawa the new head of the Ottawa Public Library will not be a librarian! One can only surmise which office that this decision came from. But the signal it sends is wrought with doom if you are a fan of the Ottawa Public Library. And when you hear the expression that the Ottawa Public Library is a "business", well you can conclude that the decision came down from the Prime Ministers Office, not the mayors office. And as you may have have noticed anything that is named McDonald is getting a pretty free ride today.

Ottawa Public Library - Main Branch
Future site of Bayshore Phase III?

Did you know dear reader that the Ottawa Public Library is the largest French-English library in North America? Did you know that it is the second largest public library in Canada? The only larger public library is  in the City of Toronto! With an annual budget of over 50 million dollars, don't you think the incompetent powers that presently are could get a search on for a posh "Cadillac" Head Librarian? Why the Oracle of Ottawa has a pretty good picture of the successful candidate already! Let us take a break from the spiral to the bottom and shoot high... Lets see... Undergraduate degree from a prestigious College at Oxford, you know, a Rhodes Scholar.  The University of Oxford has books! Over 11 million of them! And a very large percentage of them are all but priceless. One hears that the Oxford library science program is world class. A side degree in the "Greats" and /or philosophy would be utterly perfect also. Why not? The stature and presence of the second largest public library in Canada deserves a Head Librarian with a doctorate in library science. I mean really...

Now dear reader, we all know what a job like this should pay. I figure the starting salary should be about $125,000 per year to start. And then there are the language requirements. Ottawa, even in the 'Harper Government' era,  is a very cosmopolitan city, don't you know! Why the Oracle of Ottawa figures that the new Head Librarian of the Ottawa Public Library should be able to speak the big four languages of the Western Civilized World, don't you? That of course means English, French, German, and Spanish. A bonus should be offered and payed if the new Head Librarian could speak the core languages of the Classical World also, those being of course Greek and Latin. The Oracle of Ottawa deeply regrets that all pass arts degree trots from Cartoon U need not apply....

Books are sacred. A Library is not a "business". It does not market and sell products for the purpose of "profit". Go back to the drawing board and start the open selection process for a proper and posh Head Librarian. Chop chop, of you go little people....

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Tripping On Steve Keen

The belief that a capitalist economy is inherently stabilising is also one for which inhabitants of market economies may pay dearly in the future.
Steve Keen, Debunking Economics, p. 213

The Oracle of Ottawa is off his routine. The usual subject matter has been getting pretty boring. And on top of that the Canadian public has finally clued in and it is all back on track. My work on those recent subjects are all but done now.(See earlier postings...) The truth of the matter is that the Oracle of Ottawa has been side-tracked by a most amazing book written by one Steve Keen, of the University of Western Sydney, way down under, called Debunking Economics...

Steve Keen - equilibrium is bunk!

Frequent fliers to the Economy of Media know that the Oracle of Ottawa loves his books and is most interested in economics. And that he has read all the major "classical" economists texts in their unabridged entirety. Including the General Theory by Keynes in a very, very, early edition. Why the Oracle of Ottawa even read all the small print, how sick is that? And he still can't understand why every one says it is a "difficult book"? A lot of the trouble was due to war time paper and printing restrictions. The Oracle of Ottawa has always thought that Keynes was always a very good read!

But over the years the Oracle of Ottawa has been getting that anxious nervous feeling that a lot of what is taught to young economists is all very, very, well, wrong. This feeling got worse and worse as the Oracle of Ottawa put together a rather nice pile in a stock portfolio over the years, by breaking all the rules that are taught to all the up and coming portfolio mangers. According to the text books the Oracle of Ottawa has just been really lucky, so far...

But according to Steve Keen the Oracle of Ottawa may just be a very early adaptor! All the Oracle of Ottawa can tell you is that if you read one economics book this year make it Debunking Economics! This guy could be the most important economist in our lifetime. This guy is as important as Adam Smith, Karl Marx and Maynard Keynes! So that of course means that he will never win the Nobel Prize for economics, because he is too right! But the upside is that he will be famous forever!

The part where he utterly demolishes the Efficient Market Hypothesis is worth the ten times the price of the book! And I am sure that Warren Buffet would back him up on his conclusions... The Oracle of Ottawa wasn't lucky at all, he was just and truly freaking brilliant!  

And he is a very relaxing guy to listen to, unlike most stuffy pedantic Nobel Laureates. Watch this guy, he is going to be very important and world famous...

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A Standard Reference Work For The Occupy Movement

The corruption of every government generally begins with that of its principles.
Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws, Book VII, Chapter 1

Every long lasting social movement has it's standard reference work.  Christians have the Bible, the Jews have the Talmud, you get the idea. Revolutions have their documents. If any of you out there thinks that the Occupy Movement that sprung up was just a one off fling of social angst,  the Oracle of Ottawa would implore you to re-evaluate your conclusions. Sure as spring time, the Occupy Movement will be up and at it again.

Somewhere in upstate New York at the State University of New York at Plattsburgh, the guide book of the Occupy Movement has already been written. I mean, who knew?  Not only has the book been written but it is in its fifth edition! The author, Richard H. Robbins is a SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor in of all things anthropology. The title is: Global Problems and the Culture of Capitalism. It is published by Prentice Hall, and is available in paper edition.

The Oracle of Ottawa happened to stumble upon the latest edition and jumped on it immediately! It starts with the origins of money and the historical roots of the never ending growth economy, its history through time to the present day and most importantly the various side effects of the ever growing economy. Very nicely printed and illustrated, it held the Oracle of Ottawa in a total grip for the whole time that I spent reading it from cover to cover. It is ironic that it takes an anthropology prof to write one of the best books on economics that the Oracle of Ottawa has read in quite a long time.

You will smile sardonically at the ending chapters when the author refers to the "one per cent" and the "ninety-nine per cent". And when you finish reading it you will clearly understand the whole mess of capitalism as it is now deployed, and you will understand that a compound growth economics cannot go on forever against our initial endowment, the planet Earth. You will realize that we are like the old 19th century industrial baron who has depleted his last raw material and is now just realizing that the whole game is up, and is slowly living on his remaining capital hoping that it won't run out before his debtors realize what is exactly going on....

Occupy will be back in full force again soon....