Gauntlet Ramblings

    
Publication YearIssue Date 
  Gauntlet Ramblings
March 26, 2009
  Harper's hand in the jarPDF files may take a moment to load

Stephen Harper doesn't care about black . . . figures. Last week, Harper publicly defended his government's decision to reduce the Goods and Services Tax from its initial seven per cent to five per cent as a crucial measure to stimulate growth in our suffering economy. This statement was in response to criticism of the GST cut levelled against the Conservatives by former Bank of Canada governor David Dodge. Harper's response, though expected, is like the denial of a child with his hand in the cookie jar.

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March 05, 2009
  Fighting for a free and open mediaPDF files may take a moment to load

It is not uncommon to hear accusations of bias directed towards news media organizations in North America. From the CBC as a socialist mouthpiece to Fox News' right-wing corporate agenda, it seems no media outlet is able to escape at least some finger pointing. Although there are exceptions, these types of accusations are frequently based more in political partisanship and ignorance than fact. Nowhere is this more true than in the case of the world's first English language news outlet based out of the Middle East: Al Jazeera English.

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February 05, 2009
  The siren song of nationalismPDF files may take a moment to load

There tend to be a handful of events throughout the year in which I find myself singing our national anthem. Undoubtedly some will find more occasions than I, others less. To be compelled to sing it five days a week, however, seems like overkill. A New Brunswick elementary school principal who decided it was unnecessary for his students to sing the anthem daily has been unfairly demonized as unpatriotic by parents and politicians.

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January 22, 2009
  The birth of the atheist evangelicalPDF files may take a moment to load

It's Saturday morning and you're feeling great. Not much to do except relax with a good book, or perhaps meet some friends for coffee at your favourite local joint. A knock at the door, however, interrupts your daydream. It is the knock of someone with much experience knocking. You peer through the window and see two men in suits, small black Bibles in hand. "Oh Christ!" you mutter to yourself, probably without pun intended, as you frantically debate how best to deal with these religious door-to-door salesmen.

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December 04, 2008
  A crisis of consumerismPDF files may take a moment to load

Black Friday, the Friday after American Thanksgiving, is annually one of the busiest retail days of the year. Kicking off the Christmas shopping season, the idea behind the name is that it is supposedly the day in which all American businesses magically happen to begin turning a profit-- out of the red and into the black.

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December 04, 2008
  Concerning the coalitionPDF files may take a moment to load

It tends to take a lot to get Canadians really riled up over politics. The actions of the Liberals and the NDP over the last week, however, have Canadians calling for blood. Some respectable political commentators are even referring to the proposed coalition as a coup d'etat. The Liberals, the socialists and the separatists are perceived to be hijacking our democracy. Of course perception is rarely based in reality.

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November 27, 2008
  Russia's media massacrePDF files may take a moment to load

On Oct. 7, 2006 an unidentified man wearing a baseball cap entered the lobby of an apartment complex in central Moscow. It was President Vladimir Putin's 54th birthday and he was almost certainly aware of the day's significance. The man was waiting for a woman, but he wasn't looking for a date. When Anna Politkovskaya arrived home and headed for the elevator, the man did what he had come to do.

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November 13, 2008
  Losing track of love: problems with Cali's Prop 8PDF files may take a moment to load

Last Tuesday voters in the United States showed the world that democracy can, in fact, work. The American dream-- the ability to achieve greatness from meagre beginnings-- was shown to be alive and well. In two short months a man, whose candidacy 10 years ago would have been inconceivable and 50 years ago would have been forbidden from using "Whites Only" water fountains and washrooms, will take his seat in the Oval Office.

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October 30, 2008
  Strange endorsementPDF files may take a moment to load

Though his campaign is lagging behind that of front-runner Barack Obama, John McCain did manage to score a small victory last week, winning the endorsement of the much sought after terrorist demographic. The Washington Post reported last Wednesday that a commentary on the al-Qaeda linked al-Hesbah website claimed, "al-Qaeda will have to support McCain in the coming election." No doubt, this endorsement will sting Obama, whose "palling around with terrorists" seemingly failed to convince the al-Qaeda organization of his merit.

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October 09, 2008
  Voting blindPDF files may take a moment to load

Soon enough the federal election will be over and we will be able to switch from arguing about politics to arguing why nobody gives a shit about politics. Three of the last four Canadian federal elections have set the record for lowest voter turnout and while the 2006 election reversed the historic trend, still less than 65 per cent of eligible voters bothered to cast their ballot.

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