Next time your sitting there for minutes on end watching all those annoying commercials think about the commercials telling you that your not paying for local television.
"This column is dedicated to the proposition that Canada (and indeed the world) is in a crisis situation and that fundamental social change is required to remedy this situation." - The First Column, Lambda November 2, 1971 This blog is inspired by my column of the same name in the Laurentian University Newspaper, Lambda, from 1971-1973. The title refers to the concept of subverting the system from within. To read key excerpts from those columns read the first few posts in this blog.
My father, was a hard rock miner, a construction leader at INCO's Frood Stobie mine, who died too early as a result of a medical condition from working underground.
I remember the first INCO strike (and all of those since). I was only eight years old in 1958 but as a miner's son even then I understood that it was about fairness, rights and dignity. Although we did not have much under the tree that year we still had a good family Christmas filled with love.
If there was one thing I learned from my father it was solidarity and to never cross a picket line. Indeed as a student working at INCO to pay for my university education I walked the line with my brothers and sisters. That people are crossing the lines in Sudbury is astounding to me, as is the fact that they are allowed to. Perhaps it is just a different time than when I grew up in Sudbury.
You can read more about the proud history of Sudbury's INCO workers and their unions here: A Short History of Sudbury Labour by Mick Lowe
The Season in Review
As the snow falls and the salt trucks prepare to dump their loads of corroding crap on the roads and paths it is time for my season end report. I did my first below freezing ride Sunday and it was not too bad. This is the latest in the year I have ridden in recent history and I just might not stop yet.
Overall I have ridden 2684 kilometres (175 hours) this year, 508 (45) on the mountain bike and 2176 (130) on the hybrid.
My season had a poor start though with my riding only the 30 km route in the CN Cycle (formerly Tour Nortel) and dropping out of the first Ottawa Mountain Bike Association (OMBA) South March Highlands (SMH) Group Ride and never getting back into them. My first attempt at organizing a Greenbelt group ride also proved unsuccessful, hopefully just due to poor timing.
CN Cycle for CHEO
Ottawa Mountain Bike Association (OMBA)
But things did pick up and I got into the swing of things. The early part of the season saw a lot of rain and muddy trails so I spent a lot of time on the hybrid putting the kilometres on. When the trails dried up I did a lot of Greenbelt riding and ventured into the South March Highlands. I made a point of getting out on the old Kanata Lakes Trails to ride them before we lose them, as well as riding the upgraded Rockhopper Trail. I also had an interesting ride riding along the new Terry Fox Road right of way, after it was bulldozed for surveying.
How do I know this. I heard some of these climate scientists being interviewed about their computer models and it turns out they are all based on AlGoreIsms.
As an atheist who celebrates Christmas, because it is part of the cultural milieu I was brought up in, am I part of the "War on Christmas" for recognizing that the world does not revolve around Christianity.
Indeed, there are billions of people worldwide celebrating holidays and events other than Christmas during this season, and even at that not everyone who celebrates Christmas is Christian as it has become as much a secular as a religious holiday.
Indeed if anyone is guilty of a "War on Christmas" it is the Christians who have turned Christmas into the High Holy Day of Capitalism.
Let me take this opportunity to offer my best wishes to those celebrating these occasions and holidays this month:
Bodhi Day (Rohatsu) - Buddhism
Masa'il - Baha'i
December 12, 2009
The 15th month.
Chanukah - Judaism
December 12 through to December 29, 2009
Chanukah, meaning "dedication" in Hebrew refers to the joyous eight-day celebration during which Jews commemorate the victory of the Macabees over the armies of Syria in 165 B.C.E. and the subsequent liberation and "rededication" of the Temple in Jerusalem.
First of Muharram - Islam
December 18, 2009
Islamic New Year, 1431. The first of Muharram marks the first day of the first month (Muharram) of the Islamic year. It begins at sundown the previous day.
Tohji-taisai - Shinto
December 21, 2009
Grand Ceremony of the Winter Solstice. Celebrates the joy of the ending of the yin period of the sun, when it declines in strength, and the beginning of its growing power or yang period. The sun is of central importance in Japan, expressing the presence of Amaterasu Omikami, the Kami of the Sun.
Yule - Wicca
December 21, 2009
Yule, which marks the New Year in the Anglo-Saxon and northern traditions of Wicca, is the celebration of the birth of the Gof as the winter-born King, symbolized by the rebirth of the life-generating and life-sustaining sun. It is a time for ritually shedding the impurities of the past year, and for contemplating avenues of spiritual development in the year ahead.
Christmas - Christianity
December 25, 2009
Christmas or Christmas Day is an annual Christian holiday that celebrates the birth of Jesus, along with themes such as family, goodwill, giving and compassion.
Death Anniversary of Zarathustra - Zoroastrianism
December 26, 2009
The anniversary of the death of Zarathustra (Zoroaster), the founder of the Zoroastrian faith.
Ashura - Islam
December 27, 2009
The tenth day of the first Islamic month (Muharram). For Shi’ite Muslims, this day mourns the martyrdom of Hazrat Imam Husain, the grandson of Prophet Muhammad. Devout Shi’a commemorate this day of sadness with retelling the story of the battle fought in Kerbala.
Sharaf - Baha'i
December 31, 2009
The 16th month.
Gahambar Maidyarem - Zoroastrianism
December 31, 2009
This day celebrates the creation of animals. It is also a time for the equitable sharing of food.
My apologies to anyone that I have missed, please add your holiday in the comments section.
Non-Religious Holidays and Commemorations
Rosa Park's Day (December 1)
Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on the bus in 1955.
International Day of the Disabled Person (December 3)
International Volunteer Day (December 5)
Human Rights Day (December 10)
United Nations' Declaration of Human Rights in 1948
UNICEF Anniversary (December 11)
Winter Solstice (December 21)
First Day of Winter
Kwanzaa (December 26 to January 1)
Kwanzaa is a unique African American celebration with focus on the traditional African values of family, community responsibility, commerce, and self-improvement. Kwanzaa is neither political nor religious and despite some misconceptions, is not a substitute for Christmas. It is simply a time of reaffirming African-American people, their ancestors and culture.
New Years Eve (December 31)
Celebration of the New Year
And many many more, too numerous to mention.
According to CTV Ottawa:
CTV Ottawa has learned the city's auditor general, whose job includes monitoring transparency and spending at Ottawa City Hall, has been given a $100,000-payment that was never supposed to be made public.So the City's Auditor General thinks it is completely appropriate that the city make secret deals with employees that hide their compensation from taxpayers.
"I don't know how it became public because I said it was an issue that was discussed in-camera and the information that you received should never have been received by you," Alain Lalonde told CTV Ottawa on Thursday.
Although Lalonde isn't saying much about the payment, he told CTV Ottawa the leak is a breach in city policy.
"I would suggest the person that provided that information to you should be very careful," he said.