News Roundup – A Storm Full Of Bad Ideas

Storm AftermathI’m alive. Another wicked storm swept through the Lower Mainland last night. Other than the ridiculous wind (topping over 150 km/h) that shook all the windows in our apartment, the storm hasn’t affected me much. We still have power, which is more than I can say for Microsoft and my friends down in Bellevue (except Erin who was somehow spared).

I’m not a fan of our current government, but the decision to leave the European Space Agency hanging and not build a kick-ass space rover is such a bone-head move. The story has taken fire on the blogosphere, but other than the CBC, the Canadian mainstream media has been silent. Saundrie sums up the reasons why its a big mistake. Currently, Canadian scientists are world leaders in space robotics (they don’t call in the CanadaArm because it was made in Taiwan), and this was our opportunity to contribute to the exploration of Mars and a moon base. But instead, we’ll sit back and let the R&D go on elsewhere. Grrrrrr…

A company that used to specialize in spamming spammers has resurrected itself and is now targeting spamming politicians on behalf of special interests groups. Although the initial target audience includes privacy advocates and environmentalists (and Christian fundamentalists), I can’t but think this is a bad idea.

In local news, the Mayor has declared war on uncivilized people. The whole thing stinks of criminalizing homelessness before the Olympics. Nothing like sweeping our problems under the rug. Plans so far, include locking garbage bins that binners collect recyclables from and turn in for money and issuing more tickets for by-law offences like spitting and jaywalking. First, off if people actually recycled their garbage, binners wouldn’t have any reason to dumpster dive. Second, who seriously thinks they’ll ticket the businesswoman jay-walking because she’s in quick coffee fix from Starbucks? This is clearly targeting the homeless. Or at least I hope, because I spit and jay-walk all the time. Although I haven’t urinated in public since Europe – stupid lack of public facilities. Thirdly, Vancouver has to have the politest, most harmless homeless population I’ve ever seen. Please and thank-yous are standard among the bums and binners. I’ve never once felt threatened. I really don’t see the need for the crackdown. If you want to get rid of the homeless, build them homes, don’t ostracise them.

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