Banana Counting Monkey

Friday, July 05, 2002:

Toronto Garbage Strike

few figures from the strike, comparing the costs (as of a year ago) betwwen the areas of Tronto that have contracted out, and those who have union service.

Cost Per Tonne of Garbage:
*Old Toronto (union) $59.80
*North York (union) $77.78
*Etobicoke (contracted out) $39.05
*York (contracted out) $35.19

*Union 20%
*Contractors 5%

# of people running a one-person garbage truck
* Union: 2
* Contractors: 1

The private haulers pay their staff about $1 less per hour than the union pays.

BCM // 11:09 AM



"Since the launching of Operation Determined Path two weeks ago there have been no suicide bombing attacks inside Israel. There has also been a noticable decrease in the number of violent incidents perpetrated against Israeli citizens in Judea, Samaria, and the Gaza Strip."


Jerusalem Post

Peace through strength.

BCM // 10:31 AM


Instapundit Maintains Radio Silence

Despite the attack at LAX yesterday. I'm impressed.

BCM // 9:23 AM


Thursday, July 04, 2002:

Monkey See Monkey Do

Craige McMillan has a theory on why we've been seeing so many corrupt, greedy CEOs lately. Perhaps they are imitating their "betters" (who are now going on a witch hunt against them)

Maybe these corrupt CEOs were thinking what Democrats in the United States Senate were thinking when a handful of honest House managers brought them an indictment of impeachment against a corrupt White House CEO who had lied to the nation on prime time television, and then perjured himself in a court of law? "The crime," Democrats repeated to a man, woman and furry donkey when they were confronted with the evidence, "doesn't rise to the level of impeachment [punishment]." Senators then adjusted the rules of evidence to make sure the most damaging facts could never sully the Senate's hallowed halls.

The result – acquittal of a corrupt president – was predictable. The nation's Senatorial Board of Directors had rallied behind its corrupt Chief Executive Officer, preserving his power and perks despite his being a liar – a fact later confirmed when the U.S. Supreme Court barred him practicing before them.

What were they thinking, these corrupt corporate governors? Maybe they were thinking that preserving power and influence is all that matters – and that if you lie, cheat and steal from investors or constituents to win – it's OK, as long as your Board backs you up should you get caught? Maybe they were thinking, America's Senatorial directors, that the government's business is different from commercial business – and that lying is OK in conducting the government's business?

BCM // 1:59 PM


Quote Of The Day

"'re not a patriot in this war until a liberal has compared you to the Taliban."

Ann Coulter, who is to be congraulated on her book Slander reaching #1 spot on the New York Times non-fiction bestseller list.

[schadenfreude] Gawd that must gall the NYT editors so much. [/schadenfreude]

BCM // 9:19 AM



On the Fourth of July, the only appropriate thing was to go an grab some McDonald's hamburgers and fries.

BCM // 9:13 AM


Lileks, As Always, Says It Best

Look at grocery stores today: gigantic. And look who they’re for: not the lotus-eaters, but everyday folk. They’re for people who aren’t doing fabulous - but they’re doing all right. Money’s tight, the Visa’s a bitch, but they have a house - not big, not new, but it’s home, and if it’s in this first-ring burb they have a huge yard, tall trees over the street and a decent school around the corner. They have a car - no Saab, but it runs great and you can fit six bags of groceries in the trunk. They have a couple of TVs, a VCR, an AC unit in the bedroom, a dishwasher that makes a lot of noise but does the job; they have a microwave and quite possibly a motor in the garage that opens the door at the touch of a button. There’s not much crime in these parts. There aren’t bored sullen youths hanging out on the corner, there’s not trash on the streets. Middle-frickin’-America. These people have access to 79-cent fresh lemons the size of softballs in February, something kings couldn’t have 226 years ago.

Read the whole thing, but then again, you already know to do that. I'm going to enjoy forwarding this to the socialists I know.

BCM // 8:37 AM


Ottawa Police Use Pepper Spray To Evict Squatters

OTTAWA (CP) -- Police used fire department ladders and blasts of pepper spray Wednesday to evict a ragged band of squatters from a vacant house they had occupied for seven days. Dozens of activists involved in an anti-G-8 protest last week seized the downtown building across the street from the headquarters of the Public Service Alliance of Canada.

They occupied the shabby, privately owned house without running water or real bathroom facilities through days and nights of sweltering, muggy heat, defying police and municipal politicians who sought to negotiate an end to the impasse. In the wee hours of Wednesday morning, police struck to clear the property.
Later Wednesday, another group of protesters in Montreal occupied a vacant, three-story building in that city's east end in a similar demonstration against low-income housing. "It's a war between poor renters and owners," said Alexandre Maroun, an activist with a Montreal anti-poverty group. Everyone has a right to be housed. It's a minimum social right."

No word on how much the protesters consider an acceptable rental rate. Even less word on how much they paid the property owner for their sontaneous rental. Unless of course, these two issues resolve each other.
BCM // 7:01 AM


Liberals Top Corporate Donations

In case
this bit of news causes you to forget, it's the right wing parties like the progressive Conservatives and the Canadian Alliance which are the parties of big business.

The Liberal Party of Canada cleared more than $9 million in political donations last year, with more than two-thirds of the money coming from corporations. Figures disclosed through Elections Canada on Wednesday show 70 per cent of the governing party's $9.1 million in contributions came from corporations and 26 per cent came from individual donors.

Some 2,300 companies donated $6.4 million to the party in 2001, while 3,870 individuals gave $2.4 million. While total revenue to the Liberal party was nearly $16 million, expenditures on fundraising, conventions and the election reduced the gross profit to about $6.6 million, according to an audited financial statement.

Here's the howler....

The Liberals' heavy reliance on donations from Canadian businesses may change after Prime Minister Jean Chretien introduces limits on corporate contributions as part of an ethics package to be released this fall.

Snigger.....sputter...(uncontollable laughter until I cry).

In related news, Arthur Andersen may introduce new policies to improve the GAAP sometime in the near future.....

BCM // 6:48 AM


Just A Note

Notice how you never hear the Left taking about "The Greatest Good for the Greatest Number" anymore?

I wonder why? Could it have anything to do with the fact that nowhere in the world has socialism provided a greater good for the many than capitalism?


BCM // 6:38 AM


Maggie's Statue Decapitated

BCM // 6:36 AM


Guard Your Liberty Well II

The EU by hook or by crook,
intends to expand no matter what the voters of individual nations such as Ireland decide.

The routine below between Giscard and Prodi is something I've seen on TV before.... I think they call it "Good Cop/Bad Cop".

"The solution will not be to ignore the vote, but to handle the situation. Probably it requires taking what is needed from the Nice Treaty necessary to carry through the enlargement," said Mr Giscard according to Berlingske Tidende. He declined to comment if this meant adding the new decision making procedures into the accession treaties of the candidate countries.

"I do not want to go into the details. I am not a foreign minister and that is not my role. However, the question is: If there is a goal, you cannot ignore it. Enlargement is necessary. Then we have to take initiatives to make the legal basis for enlargement," Mr Giscard said in Denmark.

The opinion of Mr Giscard is in contrast with what the EU Commission President, Mr Romano Prodi said in Denmark on Monday: "There is no Plan B. There is no backdoor," said the European Commission President.

"If the Irish population decides to block then there is no alternative. That is why the referendum is so important. I hope that the Irish vote "yes" because they understand how important it is too us all," Mr Prodi said according to Politiken.
{Emphasis added}

Yes, your interests are not relevant. You should vote "yes" because it is important to "us all". Who exactly is "us all"? Why should the Irish vote to sacrifice their own interest? The same reason that you are called upon to pay more of your money intaxes every year, because it is "important to us all". "us all" of course being anyone but yourself.

(Via Samizdata)

BCM // 6:33 AM


Guard Your Liberty Well

UK proposes Mandatory ID Cards

The British government Wednesday unveiled controversial proposals to introduce compulsory identity cards for the first time since World War II in an attempt to combat illegal immigration and to clamp down on benefit fraud.
Some ordinary Britons backed this reasoning for such a card. "The only people I think who are worried about it," said retired office manager John Rawling, "are the crooks. If they won't accept identity cards, they must be on the fiddle."

Of course, the effect of the cards on a person's privacy is irrelevant. The state doesn't expect to be able to gain more tax revenue from making it harder to avoid taxes. There's no way that information from these cards will "leak" between government agencies. There's no way that the role of the card will expand into new areas bit by bit.

BCM // 6:19 AM


Happy Independence Day To The U.S.A!

A very happy birthday to the very best nation on earth.

May the US continue to walk its own path and light the way to the rest of the world towards freedom and human dignity. Freedom of action, freedom of thought and conviction, not the freedom from the necessity of action and thought that the rest of the world enshrines as the human ideal. May the US continue to show the rest of the world what is possible to free people, the happiness that can be attained by individuals, the dreams that can be achieved, the ideals that can be made real.

The success and prosperity of the United States of America is not a mistake of the world, neither an accident or an abberation that will reverse itself. It represents the reward for going against the path trod by every other government established by man, freeing man instead of restraining and treating him as the state's chattel.

God Bless the United States of America. Happy Birthday. Guard your freedom and your rights well.

BCM // 5:57 AM


Monday, July 01, 2002:

Hamas Vows To Avenge Killed Terrorist

"Instead of blowing up jews because they are jews, we will now blow up jews because they killed our leader!"

There is a certain point where threats become ridiculous and utterly redundant.

BCM // 7:36 AM


The Quest For A PDA Continues

I've been looking at buying a PDA for a few weeks now, and it has come down to two models to choose between: the
Palm m130 and the Handspring Treo 90. Both are colour handhelds, can work on MS Word documents and have the traditional features of a handheld. I have to have colour, I can't stand looking at one of the greyscale screens. So, I'll break the choice down point by point. First though, I have a few peeves about their marketing processes.

The Palm m130. Palm has been running a promotion for the last month and a half or so. Buy and Palm and get a "Shortcuts to success" expansion card. Note to the promotions boys at Palm: if you're going to promote something to people, makes sure they can find out the details of the product! The promo page lists four programs that come in the card, Zap 2016, CityTime, 4.0Student and FCPlus Professional. The first two are fairly obvious by the pictures accompanying them. The latter two aren't as intuituve. 4.0Student can be reasonably elaborated, but what the hell is FCPlus? No link in the promotion for more details. Tried searching the site, only the promo page gets a hit. The deadline on the promotion has now run out, so its a moot point anyway, but just receiving something for free is not a sufficient inducement to tip me over to getting a Palm. I want to know exactly what I'm getting. Odds are knowing would have made me want it more and accord more value to the offer.

Handspring Treo 90: This is more to do with the store that stocks these PDAs. I understand the idea of having a "non-functioning unit" on display in the store. There are thieves around and a PDA can get damaged. I am not going to accept a still colour photo pasted in the place of the screen as an adequate representation of what the actual screen can do. Not going to happen. I am also unsure of how well the dummy represents the weight of the real thing. I picked up the dummy and the first thing that ran through my mind was It can't possibly be this light. This feels incredibly fragile. I could break this in half with a flick of the wrist. If the dummy is representative of the real thing, then the Palm gets my business. I want something that can survive a gust of wind.

Now then, the real comparison.
Palm m130: 8mb memory, Treo 90: 16 mb memory
Palm m130: No keyboard, but graffiti and handwriting recognition, no thumboard accessory available, Treo 90: Keyboard, no graffiti, no handwritng recognition
Palm m130: 65,000 colour screen, Treo 90: 4000 colour screen, slightly bigger screen space
Palm m130: 5.4oz , Treo 90: 4.0 oz
Palm m130: Better styling. It just feels right in the palm of your hand , Treo 90: smaller, sleeker, I'd incessantly worry about losing it.

On the technical side, the Treo wins, hands down. Bigger screen, more memory and a keyboard. The Palm wins on the feel of the device and some ease of use (handwriting recognition), plus there's good odds Palm will introduce a thumbboard for the m130.

Decisions, decisions. One factor that complicates either choice is the financial difficulties that both companies have reached. I'd feel better about the one-year warranties that both offer if I were sure that they are going to be in business a year from now.

Any comments, suggestions, recommendations?

BCM // 6:26 AM


Happy Canada Day!

To all out there in blogdom!

BCM // 6:21 AM


Disgusting Media Bias Watch

Today, the front page of the Toronto Globe and Mail

U.S. vetoes Bosnia mission to protest new world court By MARCUS GEE
Showing once again that it is willing to defy international opinion and go it alone in the world, Washington tried to pull the plug last night on the UN-mandated peacekeeping mission in Bosnia, fearing that U.S. soldiers might be arrested by the new international criminal court.

Just in case you were unfamilliar with the issue, or hadn't made up your mind, the ever-helpful Globe makes sure you know what you're supposed to think of those dreadful unilateralist americans. Of course there is no "commentary/editorial" tag on the article.

BCM // 6:19 AM


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