Ford and Phillips: hypocrisy loves company

Canada has clear coronavirus health guidelines. Ontario has clear coronavirus health guidelines. All we need is for people to follow them in order to get this pandemic under control for a healthier 2021 and beyond.  We often look to our leaders for inspiration. In Canada’s case, our Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, has walked the talk from day one. Alas, we cannot say the same for Ontario.

At a time when front line health care staff are taxed to the maximum, it would seem that the least we could do would be to follow the basic guidelines; no non-essential travel, stay in your bubble, avoid indoor crowds, mask, stay 2 m apart and wash our hands.

Alas, neither our Premier, Doug Ford, nor some of his Conservative cabal, like Finance Minister Rod Phillips, seem capable of following those simple rules. Now, wet-behind-the political-ears rookie Sam Oosterhoff may have an excuse for his rules violating crowded evangelical restaurant party, but there is NO EXCUSE for seasoned politicians like Ford and Phillips. These were clear cases of arrogant entitlement.

At least Phillips, still on a rules violating non-essential travel vacation to St, Barts with his wife, can say he was “just following the leader.” Ford has twice violated Ontario’s travel and bubble restrictions by his May visit to his cottage to “check on the water pipes” and his family dinner get-together for Easter.

After the Ford Government shut down Queen’s Park for an extended December to February break in the middle of a global pandemic, Phillips thought it was a good time to skip the country for a little non-essential travel. For the second time.

And the icing on the Christmas cake was the pre-recorded fireside message that Phillip’s arranged to have Tweeted to his constituents making it appear that he was still home for the holidays. The message should have said, “As you all make sacrifices this #Christmas, remember that some of our fellow citizens won’t even be home for Christmas dinner over Zoom. Like me. I’ll be soaking up the sun in St. Barts while thousands of front-line heroes will be looking out for you. Ho, Ho, Ho!” Gee Rod, turns out you’re a Dick.

Also turns out that Mr. Phillips let Mr. Ford know about his trip “about two weeks ago” which would have meant that the Premier knew about Rod’s illicit vacation at the time that parliament was dissolved on December10th for a two month break in the middle of a pandemic. And Doug kept it quiet until the proverbial excrement hit the fan. So, dear readers, who wins first place?

Yeppers, two peas in a hypocritical pod in the middle of their “do as I say, not as I do” sycophantic conservative goober patch. 2022 can’t come soon enough.

The way I see it.

***

Skid Crease, Caledon

* image from cp24.com

Act Locally

The old adage still holds true for me, and like in The Polar Express, the silver bell still rings for all those who believe:

Think Globally, Act Locally, Care Personally

During this time of global pandemic and local lockdowns it is particularly important to keep that saying in mind. Supporting our local health care workers by wearing a mask, and staying socially distant and washing our hands is not too much to ask of us. Shopping locally to support our small businesses and staying home to protect our family bubbles is simple enough to do. Staying connected to local and global political events online still allows us to express our voice.

This morning, December 17, 2020, the Region of Peel is meeting to discuss a Motion to reduce Caledon’s seats at Peel to 3 and increase Brampton’s voice by 2. In my humble opinion, this would be disastrous for Caledon. The Motion was rushed in at a time of lockdown during a global pandemic and stretched the credibility of due democratic process. We were given short time as citizens to respond, but by staying tuned in to local events we were able to get our concerns on record through the Peel Clerk.That’s about the only action we could take legally.

The desire of angry townsfolk to tar and feather the Regional Councillor who betrayed Caledon, and ride her out of town on a rail would probably result in our concerned citizens getting arrested, so we may have to wait for Karma. And Karma knows.

As for local business – I continue to support Forster’s Book Garden as my pet project. Donna and Paul and Stirling continue to be able to find me any book I need, whether it be a global exploration of “Dark Money” or a local book on “Caledon Hikes” or going second-hand for “The Wolf King” -a long lost childhood favourite – Donna and Paul can find it all.

When we act with respect locally, it has a global impact. We only really change the world by one random act of kindness at a time through which we change ourselves. It’s like the old story my Dad told me about the little boy who wanted to play ball with his very busy dad. The father gave the boy a torn up map of the world and said “when you put it back together, I’ll take a break and we can play,” Within minutes the boy was back with the map all taped together. The father was astonished. “How did you do that so quickly, son?”

The boy smiled and tossed his dad the ball. “It was easy, on the other side of the map there was a big picture of a man. When I put the man back together, the whole world fell into place.”

The way I see it.

***

Skid Crease, Caledon

 

* images from silvercity.com and dreamscapes.com

The Cornered Rat

Cyber Security Chief Chris Krebs calls US elections “safe and secure” … Trump angry –  fires Chris.

Georgia officials count and recount and recount – Biden wins, Trump angry … attacks Georgia.

William Barr says no sign of fraud in elections … Trump angry … Barr is gone as AG.

Supreme Court tosses Trump’s Texas lawsuit … Trump angry … attacks Supreme Court.

Electoral College confirms Biden as President-elect … Trump angry … attacks College.

Mitch McConnell finally acknowledges Biden victory … Trump angry … attacks Mitch.

In case anyone missed it, there is a clear pattern here. Yes, cornered rats are dangerous.

The way I see it.

***

Skid Crease, Caledon

*image from imgflip.com

Of Pfizer and Failure

Folks may remember torcetrapib, a Pfizer failure that was supposed to prevent heart attacks, It was touted to be combined with Pfizer’s best seller, the cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin, better known as Lipitor®, a cash cow now competing with generics. Lipitor was known for its mild side effects – constipation, diarrhea, nausea, fatigue, gas, heartburn, headache, and mild muscle pain – about the same as eating a large can of chili beans too quickly.

Torcetrapib, infamously archived as Pfizer’s $800 million failure, went through lengthy research, marketing hype and testing. Pfizer was just about to submit it for approval when trials combining it with Lipitor® started showing high death rates in test subjects and the new drug was withdrawn. The torcetrapib catastrophe caused a huge hole in Pfizer’s drug pipeline and profits.

Folks may want to keep that discredited drug in mind as they line up to get their first shot of the new coronavirus vaccine. Torcetrapib went through extensive testing and trials. The new coronavirus vaccine is a rushed job. Front-line health care workers and our most vulnerable will be the first real long term case study subjects.

We won’t know if the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is effective until the end of January 2021. First shot, 21 days later second shot, 10 days later immunity … maybe.

I lined up two weeks ago at my local pharmacy to get my first ever flu shot. It has a long history of mild side-effects and reasonable effectiveness. I have no problem at all with recommending a proven vaccine to my family, friends and broader community. I will not, however, sign them up as experimental test subjects.

With this new coronavirus double-shot, frozen vaccine rolling out to countries around the world thanks to billions in international taxpayer dollars being paid out for our “free” vaccinations, Pfizer stands to recoup its losses and save the world. Not to mention the potential surge in the stock market bouncing up from the massive infrastructure investment needed to store and transport this vaccine. Got to love for-profit benevolence.

It always reminds us that there is no such thing as a free lunch.

The way I see it.

***

Skid Crease, Caledon

*image from forbes.com

Trump’s Last Three Weeks of “Hard Work”

Donald Trump proclaimed at his last “freedom rally” in Georgia on December 5, 2020 that, “I’ve worked harder in the last three weeks than I ever have in my life.”

 During those three weeks of “hard work” 37,000 Americans died from COVID-19. The President’s schedule is unfortunately available to the public online. Here is what the three weeks of hard work look like to President Trump. Be patient and read carefully and compare his schedule to the last three weeks of hard work in our lives.

To speed things up NPE means No Public Events, PC means a WH press Pool Call which is an update that happens every single day and leads to a WH Press Report. Here is the President’s schedule from November 15, 2020 to December 8, 2020:

November 15/20 – PC, NPE, Golf at Trump National, Potomac Falls, Virginia

November 16/20 – PC, NPE, lunch with VP Pence

November 17/20 – PC, NPE

November 18.20 – PC, NPE

November 19/20 – PC, NPE, VP Task Force mtg, Coronavirus Task Force public briefing

November 20/20 PC, virtual APEC mtg, WH press briefing, delivers drug plan address,    meets with Michigan reps at WH to get election results reversed

November 21/20 – PC, virtual APEC Summit, Golf at Trump National

November 22/20 – PC, virtual G20 Summit, Golf at Trump National

November 23/20 – PC, NPE

November 24/20 – PC, delivers Thanksgiving remarks, presents turkey with First Lady

November 25/20 – PC, NPE

November 26/20 – PC, NPE, Golf at Trump National, Thanksgiving video to military

November 27/20 – PC, Golf at Trump National, departs for Camp David

November 28/20 PC, departs Camp David for Trump National, Golf, returns

November 29/20, PC, Interview with Fox News, departs Camp David for WH

November 30/20 – PC, lunch with VP Pence, calls to Arizona GOP reps re election

December 1/20 – PC, NPE, meeting with AG Bill Barr

December 2/20 – PC, lunch with Secretary of State Mike  Pompeo, WH press con

December 3/20 – PC, Medal of Freedom to Steve Holz, football coach, signing for AI

December 4/20 – PC, NPE

December 5/20 – PC, flies with Melania to Georgia rally, rally, flies back

December 6/20 – PC, NPE

December 7/20 – PC. Medal of Freedom to wrestler-coach Dan Gable, lunch with VP

December 8/20 – PC, Operation Warp Speed vaccine summit remarks.

That’s it folks – last three weeks working harder than he ever has in his life. 6 golf games, 4 flights, 3  luncheons, 3 attempts to overturn the election results, 2 Medals of Freedom, 2 virtual international summits, 1 interview with Fox news, 1 Thanksgiving turkey pardon, 1 rally, 1 coronavirus task force report. 1 coronavirus vaccine announcement, and 37,000 Americans died from COVID-19. Tough week, Donald.

And how did you summarize your feelings: “If I lost, I’d be a very gracious loser. If I lost, I would say I lost and I’d go to Florida and I’d take it easy and I’d go around and I’d say I did a good job, But you can’t ever accept when they steal and rig and lie.”

No, Donald, we can never accept it when you steal and rig, and lie. Hard work, Mr. President? You need some hard labour. The way I see it.

***

Skid Crease, Caledon

*image from violinchannel.com