Author: The Activist

What the Hack? Let’s Build a Better World

Russian tinkering in American politics is only the tiniest, insignificant tip of the iceberg that is the corruption called the American political system these days. We saw a tiny fleck of 21st Century right wing political corruption in the Harper team’s robo calls trying to confuse selected voters into believing their polling place had moved. But that was a most distant and almost insignificant reflection of the ubiquitous malfeasance that is right wing politics in the United States—but spreading like wild fire before Santa Ana winds on a sweltering California late summer day. It is no longer appropriate to say there is rot in the American political system– like an apple in late winter that has a brown spot. American democratic ideals–which once dazzled humanity’s dreams of governance by, for and of the people–have been almost entirely corrupted by social media and massive computational capacity wedded to the enormous amount of money that corporate interests and the colossally wealthy are willing/anxious to spend on dismantling all but the pretense of Democracy. Where we hear the term voter suppression and think of efforts to make voting more difficult–like: requiring more identification than a particular(disadvantaged) group or class of people is likely to have, or limiting the number of polls in some areas so people likely to vote for less than far right candidate will become discouraged at the line ups...

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Dump Trump; build a sustainable Comox Valley

Thank you President Trump! Ironic as it may be, Donald Trump has done more to stimulate real action on climate change than any other head of state, present or past. Yes– the inane Donald has officially pulled the United States out of the Paris Climate Agreement–but what is the Paris Climate Agreement other than a toothless pretense of an agreement filled with meaningless promises whose primary intention is to fool people into believing that we can trust world leaders to put the long-term health of our planet before the short-term profits of oil and gas companies? The Donald couldn’t bear the idea that anything might be thought of as more important than corporate profits—not even the life supporting atmosphere that makes human life(and corporate profits) on this planet possible. What The Donald–and his profits-are-all-that-matter buddies–failed to consider is the degree to which the US withdrawal from the Paris Agreement has compelled those who do want a healthy, functioning atmosphere to speak up and take direct local actions to save our planet—regardless of what the radical right has in mind. Some of those actions are political. Surely the recent rise of the BC Green Party has something to do with the urgency that people feel must now be assigned to caring for our planet. However, politics is only one level of action, what else are people who want to take...

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Ditch the Rail; Cycle the Trail

In my April 22 post to this blog Ditch the trail;ride the bus; and cycle lots too I argued that despite the appeal of converting the  defunct E & N rail bed to a world class hiking/cycling trail, “the relevant conversation right now is not primarily about cycling tourism…it has to be about readily available, affordable attractively packaged alternative transportation to our destructive obsession with CO2 belching Single(or few) Occupant Vehicles (SOV).”  As an avid cyclist, I liked the idea of converting the defunct E & N rail bed to a cycling/hiking trail extending from Victoria to Courtenay. However-in a world of limited resources-it seemed to me that a cycling path had to be second priority to a bus system that can adapt to passenger load over flexible distances, that could change routes on short term changes in demand, that could cater to events and seasons while connecting ferries and airports with affordable/Earth friendly transportation. I argued a vitalized bus system would combine high demand short routes with distance travelers and integrate with major transit stops with no additional infrastructure to build. It all made good sense to me at the time, but I was wrong. Suggesting that subsidies now promised to maintain a defunct railway could better go creating an energized, Island-needs bus system is a visionary proposal with little chance of being implemented in the next ten...

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 Black Press: Viewpoint comes with blinders

The Comox Valley Record’s “Viewpoint” column is usually reserved for the pander to big money, ignore ever more ominous signs of devastating climate change tomfoolery of Tom Fletcher. However with the BC election too close to call even the Fox News styled rabid right rants of Fletcher incessantly attacking the NDP appear to have been too mundane for Black Press. So, voila, they pull out the big gun/big money spokesperson, Jim Shepard for a “guest column” that is pure, deceitful election propaganda for the corporate interests that were so desperately trying to buy the election for BC Liberals—the party running on a “debt-free BC” slogan—the same party that, in six years under Clark added 30 per cent more to the provinces debt than the NDP did in ten years at the helm. Did you notice that the Jim Shepard advertorial(which Black Press deceptively labels a “column” suggesting it is something other than the blatant propaganda/political attack ad that it is) begins with a deception that any, however dozy, editor would immediately pick up as an unabashed lie: “The NDP’s Leap Manifesto-accepted by New Democrats across BC and Canada as a guide for our future…” Well the federal NDP did vote to use the Leap Manifesto as a discussion paper on alternatives for saving our atmosphere and life on Earth from the devastating impacts of global warming, but no provincial...

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Old Boys’ Club rides again!

The Comox Valley Old Boys’ Club rides again! This year they’ve named their entry to the wild west show, which is politics as usual in the Comox Valley, the Comox Valley Taxpayers’ Alliance(CVTA).  Just out of the chute, bucking and raring and firing their six irons in all directions at once, comes the latest rendition of the Comox Valley Old Boys Network (CVOBN). I was going to say that it seems INSCRUTABLE!–at the least–that  the CVOBN which has–in the past–spent so much time fussing about their desire to have more expeditious relations with the city, are now calling themselves the Comox Valley Taxpayers Alliance and taking out full page ads in the CV Record to attack council for hiring the staff to deal with the delays that have, previously, so vexed the old boys! However, the whole Lilliputian effort by the CVOBN seems a lot more comprehensible if we just look back to the 2011 incarnation of the CVOBN– then called “Common Sense”—which was a bit of a conundrum as they were about anything but common sense. Common Sense was a secretive group that suddenly appeared on the political scene one month before the 2011 election pushing a neo-conservative program of tax cuts for business and a curtailment of local government’s mandate to deal with environmental and social issues. While they were pushing much the same themes as CVTA,...

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Power Lunch for LIFTVIPS
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Comox Valley Farmers’ Market
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Each Saturday features a delicious recipe from the North Island Chefs Association – and of course all of the wonderful local producers of vegetables, meats, baking, preserves, fish and more! See you at the Native[...]
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9:00 am Comox Valley Farmers’ Market
Comox Valley Farmers’ Market
Jul 8 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Each Saturday features a delicious recipe from the North Island Chefs Association – and of course all of the wonderful local producers of vegetables, meats, baking, preserves, fish and more! See you at the Native[...]

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