Too Much Going On – Issue 56

I had planned to continue the series on Third Places / Public Spaces . I have a great article from The Economist   to use about the impact of asphalt and concrete covering flood plains in Britain. It would tie into this discussion and I will get back to this topic but there is too much going on! 

Did Canada need an election?

A very simple answer – no! I have voted Liberal in every election but one. In that election I voted for the Greens. I just completed CBC’s Vote Compass. At the top – the Greens, the NDP, and the Liberals are all within 4% points of one another. Then, to my surprise, the Bloc Québecois sits in fourth spot. It is 17 percentage points ahead of the Conservative Party but a good 14 percentage points behind the top three. 

Stay tuned for a newsletter setting out the election issues I consider most important. I may even tell you how I intend to vote! It isn’t for parties that I have supported in the past. 

Defeat in Afghanistan!

Afghanistan -last time conquered – 539 BC

NATO nations and other allies have been at war in Afghanistan for almost 20 years. It is important to remember why there was an invasion in the first place. Forget the altruistic motives currently being ascribed. Post September 11, 2001 the United States wanted revenge. It wanted to eliminate Al-Qaeda and deny terrorist groups a safe haven for their operations. It is another variation on “woke” to claim otherwise.

Allied forces successfully toppled he Taliban regime. However,  they failed miserably in their neo-colonial ambition to establish a democracy that favoured the “West”. Revisionist history attempts to cast the conflict as a struggle for human and women’s rights. If it had been, we should have invaded Saudi Arabia eons ago. Oh! They have oil and buying power so their  state support of terrorism and dismal record on human rights is OK?

The last people to conquer Afghanistan were the Persians who ruled there from 539 BC to 331 BC. Take note, BC not AD. And, where has the west had any success establishing democracy? Now the Taliban has roared back into power. Make no mistake, the Taliban mean to humiliate the allies, particularly the US, with its August 31 deadline for evacuation / withdrawal.

The fourth wave

Send them back for remedial math! To elementary school!

From the  Québec government’s daily dashboard:

  • The unvaccinated’s risk of infection: 8.2x the fully vaccinated and 3.8x those awaiting a second jab
  • And the risk of ending up in hospital: 22.4x the fully vaccinated and 3.8x those awaiting a second jab

Do the anti-vaxers need elementary school remedial math? There has to be a limit to stupidity. 

And then there is the hypocrisy! Example: Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, leaves it to individual business owners to require masking! Then he fights “tooth and nail” to deny cruise companies the right to require full vaccination to board. If I ran a cruise line I would look for any port other than in Florida from which to operate. Let’s face it, Miami is the ugliest stop on any Caribbean cruise.  

Heatwaves! Forrest Fires! Floods!

Smoke from California wildfires obscures casinos along the Strip in Las Vegas.Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun, via Associated Press

I can’t keep up! Where will the next climate change calamity strike? 

What kind of world do we want to leave to our grandchildren? Are you more worried about the national debt or an inhabitable planet?

I could keep going. There really is too much going on!

Cities are in Crisis

March 7, 2024

Anastasia Mourogova Millin, March 5, 2024 Earth’s urban population will grow by 2.5 billion people over the next 30 years. Over the same time period, urban land expansion put at risk the survival of 855 different species and will threaten the homes of over 30,000 animal and plant species. Add in the impact of climate […]

The Co-working Concept, Issue 80

January 22, 2024

Co-working space came to mean the notorious We Work model. When I had been asked to opine on co-working I tried to steer the conversation away from the Adam Neumann / Softbank  flimflam growth model. Instead, I suggested that property owners look at usage and users. While I doubted We Work’s ability to survive I […]

The Affordable Housing Conundrum

October 3, 2023

Before I fall completely into the trap of opposition politics, I have decided to take a break from never-ending criticism and to start suggesting solutions to the affordable housing conundrum. Do I have a plan? No, more a collection of ideas To start with, I think there are three key issues: Home ownership is not […]

We Should Know Better

August 26, 2023

I know! I am going to sound like a grumpy old man. Maybe that is because I am. I have been scratching my head in wonderment at the Taylor Swift phenomena. Is she an Incredible song writer, composer, and performer? I really don’t know! A discussion for another time? But probably not. At my age […]

Not in My Back Yard

August 4, 2023

Don’t build it! At least, Not In My Back Yard ! I acted as an advisor  in the sale of a beautifully natural, 14-acre urban waterfront estate. Existing zoning allowed for the development of 30 to 35 single-family homes, which after road dedication would leave very little green space. I did not think that was […]

Glasgow – That Dear Green Place

July 31, 2023

We were visiting Glasgow (literally that Dear Green Place in Gaelic) to see where my father was born, grew up, and went to University. Fortunately for me, my cousin John from Australia had just visited and had met with historians, Bruce Downie  and Norry Wilson.  So,  we too arranged to meet them in the Govanhill […]