Friday, October 31, 2014

Canadian propaganda reminiscent of North Korea

That's the verdict of Kenneth Cukier, writing in the prestigious British publication The Economist.

Hey Ken, get over yourself; this is the new Canada, Harper's Canada! That stereotype of a modest and humble people, self-effacing and quietly punching above their weight... that's so Lester Pearson!

In the new, modern, Harperite Canada, we blabber incessantly about our leadership role in this and that, when the reality is something else entirely. John Baird's Dept of Foreign Affairs and International Salvation has told us dozens of times how Canada "leads" the global fight to save women and girls. Pure bupkis!

We are now a nation that brays loudly and carries a very modest stick indeed.

Our leaders crow constantly about punching above our weight when all that means is we're a Me-Too third-rate power dropping bombs on some failed state with no air defences, in some pathetic ploy to curry favour with the big dogs in Brussels and Washington.

Times have changed, Ken... meet the new Canada.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Is Jian Ghomeshi the new Jimmy Savile?

Almost looks like it, eh?

They appear to have had the same MO. Dude in position of authority extorts sexual favors from underlings.

Be they unpaid interns, guests, or co-workers, the victims kept quiet because they went along with the game.

No tyrant can survive without the complicity of the oppressed.

Canada FM Baird "deeply horrified"

Those of you who are habitual readers of the press releases emanating from Canada's Department of Foreign Affairs, Gay Rights, Mining Rights, and Corporate Rights, will be well acquainted with bullshittin' Baird's tendency to fling dung in the direction of enemies of Empire.

He is often appalled, occasionally outraged, but rarely if ever has he been deeply horrified.

But he is today...

Canada Condemns ISIL’s Massacre of Sunni Opponents

October 30, 2014 - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today released the following statement:
“I am deeply horrified by reports that mass graves have been uncovered in the Iraqi province of Anbar, allegedly containing the bodies of hundreds of members of the Sunni Albu Nimr tribe, which is opposed to the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant [ISIL].
“These acts are a clear reminder of ISIL’s total disregard for human life and that they will kill anyone who does not adhere to their brutal ideology and distorted version of Islam, be they Shia, Sunni or members of other religious communities.
“Canada condemns ISIL’s brutality and calls upon the diverse population of Iraq to face the terrorist threat as one and bring those responsible to justice.
“We send our heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of the victims.”
Canada has officially listed ISIL as a terrorist entity under Canada’s Criminal Code.
***
Oh ya!
Those ISIS/ISIL/Islamic State baddies have killed hundreds of their opponents.
This leaves the Canadian Foreign Minister "deeply horrified."
Oddly enough, when Israel was killing a few hundred of its opponents last summer, along with many more hundreds of innocent civilians, Baird was rendered speechless.
"Speechless" as in he had not one critical word to say about Israel.
And that second paragraph is a doozy, is it not? Let's give it just a subtle tweak;
These acts are a clear reminder of USA's total disregard for human life and that they will kill anyone who does not adhere to their brutal ideology and distorted version of democracy, be they Shia, Sunni or members of other religious communities.
Just last week Baird was in Saudi Arabia, a country whose non-elected government has been beheading it's opponents for years, talking nice and being anything but "deeply horrified," because after all, the Saudis are buying lots and lots of military stuff from Canada.
You can't be going off all horrified when there's a dollar to be turned!
Fact is, the US and her allies in the region have taken exponentially more lives, innocent or otherwise, than the upstart Islamic State, and never has there been so much as a "somewhat concerned," let alone a "deeply horrified," from Mr. Baird.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Hollaback and the myth of gender equality

Most sensible people understand that there will never be genuine gender equality for two reasons:

1. Most men are pigs.
2. Most women are not.

As a guy who has successfully resisted his piggish instincts, at least most of the time, I am therefore bemused by the attention garnered by the latest publicity stunt from Hollaback, a well intentioned NYC advocacy group.

Their latest bit of street sociology shows Shoshana B. Roberts being harassed 108 times in a ten hour walk around New York. That's over ten harassment events per hour.

Here's the problem. When a woman walking alone on the streets of a big city, small city, small town, whatever, is sexually harassed by men, the experience gives rise to anxiety and fear.

When a man walking alone on those same streets is sexually harassed by women, the experience gives rise to a boner.

Sorry folks. You can do all the theorizing you want, but that's pretty much the way it is.

Which is not to say it's the way things should be. In a perfect world, guys would know they can just think it and not say it... let that gal walk home without your creepy attention. That's what I want for my mother and my daughter and the woman I live with.

Alas, we're not yet anywhere near a perfect world.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Jews joining ISIS?! - get outta here!

If you thought all those youngsters decamping to Berlin is a scandal, get a load of this!

Yup, French Jews joining ISIS, the Islamic State... who can even imagine such a thing?

Well, some official in the Hollande regime, apparently. I knew those people were incompetent beyond belief, but to drive Jews into the arms of Islamic State?

Then again, maybe those conspiracy theorists were right all along... ISIS/ISIL/Islamic State has always been a Zionist plot...

Oh my golly... this gets way too complicated for me... I think I'll stick to tending my garden.

Ruminations of a lap dog

FM John Baird is in a tizzy over the visit by Big Dog John Kerry:

Baird Discusses International Security with Secretary Kerry in Ottawa

October 28, 2014 - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today welcomed his U.S. counterpart, Secretary of State John Kerry, to Ottawa to commemorate the two Canadian soldiers killed in the attacks last week and to discuss further cooperation on a number of international issues.
Baird and Kerry visited the National War Memorial, where Corporal Nathan Cirillo was murdered while standing guard. “It is always special when we meet with our closest friends and allies, especially on our home turf,” Baird said, “but I am sorry that this meeting comes in the shadow of such a tragic week.”
In their bilateral meetings, they discussed cooperation on a number of international issues, including tackling the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), the situation in Ukraine, market access for the energy sector, and the concerning spread of the Ebola virus.
“Canada and the United States have been partners, allies and friends through good times, as well as through some of our most tragic moments in history,” Baird said. “We also stand shoulder-to-shoulder in our response to the great challenges around the world.”
“These attacks only make our resolve stronger to do our part in the global fight against terrorism,” said Baird. “We cannot allow there to be a safe haven for ISIL’s medieval savagery or a launch pad for attacks on our own soil.”
“We stand together in solidarity with the Ukrainian people as they seek a future that embraces freedom and democracy,” he added. “Canada will continue to stand with Ukraine and our allies in a robust response to these reckless actions.
----
Hokey doodle, Martha, just imagine Big John flying all the way up here to the Great White North to talk mano-a-mano with Little John!
We're in the big leagues now!
Especially now that we've finally had our very own terrorist attack! Yup, some Towel-heads of Terror done cut down a couple of our boys right here in the Homeland! Yes, I know the fact that our terrorists were Canadian white people with mental health issues does diminish our victims-of-terror cred somewhat, but hey, Big Steve called it Terrorism, and that's good enough for me and both the Johns.
After all, you don't imagine Big Steve woulda turned up at that funeral in Hamilton today to talk about our woeful neglect of the mentally ill, do you?
That's a problem that won't be solved with photo-ops...



Sunday, October 26, 2014

End of the World finally here!

Ya, it's gotta be true because I read it at Before it's News!

And not only did I read it, but thousands of others did too!

So it gotta be true...

Ya gotta hand it to PT Barnum... except he had it all wrong with that "every minute" shit.

In the digital age, there's one born every .0001 of a second!

With voter turnout at almost 40%, Ukraine election seen as great success!

You always know your "democracy" is in trouble when over half the eligible voters can't be bothered to vote. That seems to be the case with today's election in Ukraine.

That dismal turn-out comes in spite of the Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird having issued an inspirational paean to the virtues of freedom and democracy mere hours before the polls opened. Ya gotta love that bit about "resiliency and determination for a better future."

We'll see how the Ukrainians feel about freedom and democracy when they get the full course treatment of Frau Merkel's austerity enema!

Goodbye dreams of European integration!

You'll note that Baird boasts of Canada's generous complement of Ukrainian-Canadian election observers on the ground. That observer mission breaks the cardinal rule of election observer missions; don't empower partisans to determine the fairness of elections.

While that might look beyond sketchy in the rest of the world, the Harper gang is counting on big numbers from the Ukrainian-Canadian community in the next Canadian Federal Election.

Last time round, Big Steve won a majority on the strength of 25% of eligible voters.

Since then, there's been a lot of Canadians shaking their heads at the multiplicity of anti-democratic initiatives emanating from Harper's government.

If those grateful hyphenated Ukrainians turn up to vote, they could make all the difference in the next Canadian federal election.

The Harper gang's Ukraine policy is absolutely brazen self-serving political opportunism and little else.

CBC dumps Jian Ghomeshi for violating corporate code on pants-off time

Hell, I didn't even know CBC had a corporate code for pants-off time. I always assumed pants-off time was private time... unless of course Jian was indulging in oinky-boinky adventures at work?

Not that such a thing has never happened before... hell, I've known CBC folks for years, and the tales they tell... it's really hard to fathom what Jian might have done to draw down the corporate gods of political correctitude.

But I don't know the details, nor do I want to. Suffice to say, it's a sad day when the struggling CBC cuts loose its brightest shining star.

God speed to ya, Jian!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Canadians celebrate glorious triumph over lone gunman who failed to bring down state

I don't know about you, but I'm finding it all a bit much.

The facts; a troubled 32 year old Canadian drug addict, armed with an antique hunting rifle, murdered a Canadian soldier in cold blood, and then stormed into the parliament buildings, where he was dispatched to his reward by the very professional actions of the Sergeant-at-Arms, Kevin Vickers.

That's the story, and that's where it should stay.

Instead, we've got politicians of all stripes, and their media fans across the political spectrum, making this out to be some great victory of good over evil.

Here's what should matter. If Mike Bibeau had been given some psychiatric attention, which he was clearly looking for, this incident would never have happened. Instead, he gets all sorts of media attention after the fact, which will only encourage the next Bibeau who has exhausted all his options and wants to go out in a blaze of glory.

The politicians, especially the Harper gang, are milking this to the max. This was a terrorist attack, not the last suicide-by-cop chapter in the life of some desperate and isolated loser. Yes, we are canadastrong, we will not be cowed by terrorists...

And the ever-accommodating media are all over this frenzy of jingoism. Yesterday's CFL game between Ottawa and Montreal never matched the spectacle of the pre-game ceremony celebrating Canadian resolve in the face of terrorism. They even had the biggest Canadian flag in history available for the occasion! The televised OHL game between Kitchener and Owen Sound likewise paled in comparison to the pre-game tribute to our military.

Tonight's NHL game on the CBC was similarly preceded by a rousing tribute to the great Canadian spirit, as exemplified by the heroic actions of our courageous men and women in uniform, who so far as I can tell, made news this past week by getting run over by a car or being shot in the back.

And then Don Cherry gave over the entirety of Coach's Corner with more of the same, which was a disappointment to anybody who just wanted to watch the Leafs play the Bruins.

Clearly, this past week has been an emotional one... and just as clearly, Ottawa and her media acolytes are working over-time to manipulate those emotions...

LET'S TEACH THOSE ISLAMIC TERRORISTS A LESSON THEY'LL NEVER FORGET!!!

Bombs away...

Erdogan's double game; feeding both sides in the Kobani slaughter

The wily Turkish PM-cum-President is proving himself the craftiest practitioner of realpolitik since Henry Kissinger!

Seems that Turkey is provisioning both sides in the Kurd-ISIS conflagration playing itself out in the Syrian city of Kobani. Turkey just recently relented to pressure from her NATO betters to allow Kurdish fighters across the border.

At the same time, here's a Kurdish leader claiming that Turkey is also facilitating the movement of Islamic State fighters across that same border!

I think that PYD leader pretty much nails it when he talks about Turkey fomenting a war of attrition. Maybe he's been reading this blog?

And while you never want to make too much of anything you find in the Daily Mail, it is beyond curious that a (American, by the way) reporter would go to her reward under mysterious circumstances right after reporting that Turkey is indeed playing a double game.


Iran leads way on Sunni-Shite rapprochement

I must have read a dozen times in as many different mainstream places this week that the perpetual turmoil in the Middle East has nothing to do with the last 100 years of Western meddling in the region, but everything to do with the last thousand plus years of Sunni-Shite animosities.

That is, if nothing else, a convenient way of getting us off the hook. Insofar as that is true, one would think that the same know-nothing Western experts who put forward that argument would rejoice at the initiatives taken by Shia Iran to reach out to their Sunni cousins.



In fact, both Hamas boss Ismail Haniya and Uber-Ayatolla Ali Khamenei should be deemed Nobel Peace Prize worthy for their efforts to bring together the long-warring branches of the family of the Prophet, bless His name.

You will notice, however, that those same Western experts are not at all keen on any hint of Sunni-Shite reconciliation. Why do you suppose that is? Could it be that at every turn over the past twenty years, the Nations of Virtue, ie the West, have done whatever they could to fan the flames of the Sunni-Shia rivalry?

Could that be because virtually every Sunni-led country is in America's pocket?

Could that Sunni-Shia rivalry, now that it has reached mutually genocidal proportions, be itself the product of our meddling?

Could that explain our fixation on Iran's imaginary nukes, while the all-too-real Judeo-Christian nukes in Israel and the Sunni nukes in Pakistan give us no cause for concern whatsoever?

Could a successful rapprochement be the undoing of our divide-and-conquer strategy, a strategy that has served the West so well and condemned the people of the Middle East to perpetual horror?

No wonder our mainstream presstitutes never tire of demonizing Iran and Hamas!




Friday, October 24, 2014

Could we please ramp down the war talk? It's embarrassing.

The murder of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo at the National War Memorial is a tragedy for his friends and family. There will be somewhere in the range of 600 murders in Canada this year, all of them tragic for the friends and family of the deceased.

None of them, including Cirillo's, mean that Canada is at war.

But that does not stop Maclean's magazine from posting this hysterical headline; Life during wartime: We're all witnesses to war.

Well, the truth is, we're not all witnesses to war. Cpl. Cirillo was shot down by a Canadian crack-head, not by some foreign power with designs on Canada.

67,000 Cpl. Cirillos died in WW1. That was a war.

3,600 Cpl. Cirillos died in a matter of days just at Vimy.

The wanton over-reaction to the murder of Cpl. Cirillo dishonours the memory of the many thousands of Canadians who made the ultimate sacrifice in real wars.

Cut it out already!

A brief glimpse of sanity in the MSM

CBC has this headline on view today; Should the West stop intervening in the Middle East?

Why hell ya!

While there are many details in Nahlah Ayed's article that one could quibble over, she at least deserves credit for raising a question that is more often studiously avoided by the mainstream press. Unfortunately, she and/or her editors at CBC lost their nerve and left us with an ambivalent conclusion.

Those sixty countries who have supposedly "signed up" for the war on ISIS are going to do what, exactly? Cheer-leading, for the most part. A handful of them, including Canada, have offered token material support for what is essentially a continuation of America's war on Islam. In the case of Canada, that means offering six fighter jets for six months.

That's not exactly a serious commitment to the cause.

Terrorism in Canada; Islamic radicals or nutters with guns?

What is the logical outcome when government policies make it harder to find psychiatric care and easier to get guns?

It is more than obvious when you read the back stories of the perpetrators of the two "terrorist" attacks in Canada this past week, that these individuals fell through the cracks of Canada's health care system. They desperately needed intervention on addiction and mental health issues.

Unfortunately, when the government of the day is totally focussed on a "tough-on-crime" agenda, such help is unlikely to be forthcoming.

The more you look at the past week, the less likely you are to see any link to Islam, radical or otherwise. In both cases you had marginalized men with mental health issues. We're not going to solve the marginalized Canadian men with mental health issues problem by dropping more bombs in the Middle East.

It's not a gun issue either; the guy in Quebec used his car as a weapon to run down that soldier in the parking lot. We could ban cars and guns and mental illness will still be mental illness.

The root problem is that we've become a winner-take-all culture in which the guys who perceive themselves as losers see going out in a blaze of glory as their final chance to regain their dignity, and our media happily obliges them in that quest.

What the Harper government has in common with the Taliban and Islamic State

Quick quiz; on what policy initiatives does the Harper gang rip a page out of the Taliban playbook?

Oddly enough, the fundamentalist Christian sensibilities that drive Harper are not that far removed from the fundamentalist sensibilities of our biggest, baddest, worstest enemies in the Taliban and ISIS.

It's a fact not given much attention these days, but the Taliban had come close to eliminating the poppy trade before the Nations of Virtue invaded in 2001. Thereafter, poppy production increased year after year, with 2014 now being proclaimed the best year ever.

Big Steve shares with the Talibs the absolutist approach to drug prohibition. The Islamic State crew is even more extreme; they don't even permit tobacco use!

That's a policy that would have some resonance with Big Steve's fundamentalist Christian base; ban tobacco, ban drugs, ban alcohol... I think Mr. Harper would feel right at home in the Islamic State!

There's other stuff of course... like the deficits in democracy, the questionable commitment to woman's rights etc... but on the big issues, like the War on Drugs, it looks like Big Steve and his Islamic adversaries are on the same page in the hymnal.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

BBC refers to Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers as "security guard"

That's a bit of a blooper for the Beeb.

After all, we got our parliamentary traditions from Mother England.

We normally know Mr. Vickers as the guy who opens every session of parliament with this silly hat and a ceremonial mace over his shoulder.



Turns out the dude also keeps a very un-ceremonial Glock in one of those pockets!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The terror threat in Canada

Canada PM Stephen Harper just spent five minutes on TV telling us Canada was under attack by terrorists.

Today's Ottawa incident could be nothing more than a suicide-by-cop event. We don't know, nor does Harper. However, he's quick on the draw in invoking the tragedy of innocent lives lost.

That's the same PM who glories in Canada's role in the destruction of Libya. If you recall, Canada "punched above its weight" in that glorious bloodbath. Any innocent lives lost in the bombs we dropped?

And look at Libya now. What a success story!

Let's not forget that Canada was one of the first of the Me-Too nations who are all aboard for dropping more bombs in the Middle East to combat this "Islamic State" we've been hearing so much about. While Canada's "terror" episodes are more likely than not about disgruntled individuals, our ever-eager kow-towing to the Obama agenda will sooner or later attract real terror.

Canada should stay home and mind Canada's business; after all, there's more than enough to do here.


FLASHBACK: US training Kurds for operations in Syria and Iraq in 2005

Yup, they're definitely the sort of folks we can work with... 'cause we've been working with them forever!

We can work with them, Israel can work with them... hell they're just like us!

Except for that little issue of female genital mutilation that never ever gets so much as a passing mention in our Kurd-loving mainstream media.

Here at the Falling Downs think tank we don't take sides. There are a thousand and one shades of discrimination and exploitation afoot around the world. The point is, it's their business, not our business.

It is no longer a curious coincidence that the Nations of Virtue take exception to discrimination and exploitation only in countries where we have "strategic interests," also known as oil. The whole world despises us for our brazen hypocrisy.

Well, not the whole world... we still have the "community of nations" on our side.

You know as well as I do what a fraud that is.

Was Malala the intended target of Ottawa terror attack?

Today was the day youthful human rights phenom and Nobel winner Malala was to get her honorary Canadian citizenship.

You'd pretty much have to scour the fine print to know that said ceremony was going to happen in Toronto, not in Ottawa.

Honorary Canadian citizenship? You can forgive an aspiring martyr for assuming that would happen in Ottawa. So maybe Malala dodged another bullet.

While you can bet that the warmongers in the government of Canada can be counted on to milk today's events to the the max, it might be wise to bear in mind that it's not an unprecedented occurrence. In 1984 a gunman barged into the Quebec Legislature and shot down three people.

That was a more innocent age, however. That attack didn't result in an abrogation of civil liberties or a vilification of certain minorities.

Times have changed.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Earth to Harper - 815 internationally renowned scientists gang up on Big Steve

In the Harper world, politics trumps science every time.

Big Steve has done his level best to stifle criticism on every front, but when it comes to federally funded science, he's got a really effective lever at his finger-tips.

Federal funding!

And Big Steve is not afraid to push the lever, which is why today you found an open letter, signed by 815 internationally renowned scientists, pleading with Big Steve to un-muzzle and re-fund Canada's scientists.

Ha! Are they ever barking up the wrong tree!

Harper's Alliance Church brain trust already know science is bullshit, so save your signatures, international scientists!

Stephen Harper is not one to be bullied by public opinion, or scientific evidence, or reality, or the signatures of 815 pinheads on a mere piece of paper.

Especially if those opinions belong to internationally renowned scientists who don't even vote in Canada.


Uncle Sam's Kobani Candy Scramble

You couldn't see this coming, eh?

The Empire, lacking the fortitude to step out from behind the curtain and commit one way or the other to what it's really up to in Syria, has chosen a typically wimpy "compromise" solution; just drop weapons willy nilly around Kobani, and hope the good guys get to them first!

Maybe they will, and maybe they won't, but one thing we know for sure is that Uncle Sam is determined to make sure everybody on all sides has lotsa guns and lotsa ammo!

Do you think Uncle Sam has a secret agenda to just keep feeding the fire till all the towelheads finish each other off?...

Just wondering.

Monday, October 20, 2014

The life and death of Peter de Groot

This guy did not have to die.

Condolences to the family of Peter de Groot.

This could easily have been avoided, and I believe twenty or thirty years ago it would have been.

Something has gone wrong in police training.

Somewhere in the course of the last twenty or thirty years job one became serving and protecting themselves.

A cop used to be somebody you knew, somebody you could talk to, somebody you had some respect for, and they for you.

Now they pick the buffest guys with the highest scores out of the "Police Foundations" graduates, a culture that by all accounts is saturated with 19th century machismo and 21st century 'roid abuse.

It's gotta be a tough gig, being a cop, seeing the worst of humanity all the time. But when shit like this happens, I can't help but think we've lost our way.

Boats

I noticed the other day that somebody has a 52 foot SeaRay overwintering in the yard at the Wiarton Marina.

That's a million dollar boat.

From time to time, when me and the Farm Manager are feeling optimistic, we'll discuss the possibility of buying a boat. Not a million dollar boat, but enough boat to afford a three or four weeks cruise through the North Channel and back.

Maybe even enough boat to make a summer of it and cruise to Chicago and back. You can do that from the Wiarton Marina.

Just for fun I read up on the specs of that SeaRay. Twin 660 Cummins diesels. At optimum cruising speed she sucks back 35 gallons per hour. That's in the neighborhood of $300 per hour... and you're gonna run her through the North Channel?

For two weeks?

Maybe not.

That's crazy money!

Hell, for $300 an hour you can almost hire a lawyer! What do you want to do with the rest of your life - pay lawyers or cruise the North Channel?

There are ways to pare the bills, of course. When me and Junior were waiting in line to pay the extravagant entry fee to view the classic cars at the Cobble Beach Concours last year, there was a elderly gentleman a couple of places behind us having the most script-worthy conversation on his cell phone.

"Ya, how ya doin'... did ya hear xxx checked out the other night?... ya, fer fucks sakes... only turned 70 last year... had a 23 year old in his bed!... ya, died with a smile on his face, but listen, he has a 47 foot Chrissie up in Lake Simcoe, and listen to this; had brand new Detroit's installed last year... ya she's a beauty... ya, I know, but he spent a hundred grand on the diesels!... and she was appraised at... but I've talked to the executor, and I think you can probably get her for 25, maybe even 20."

Hmm...

I was tempted to put a second mortgage on Falling Downs and scoop up that 47 Chrissie.

Alas, twin Detroits are still gonna run into hundreds per hour. Unless you idle along on one motor. Which would give "floating cottage" a whole new meaning. You'd be drifting through the North Channel at about the same pace that waterfront erosion is pulling all those waterfront properties into the sea.

So for the time being, we're sticking to small craft cruising here at Falling Downs. If you're anywhere along the shore of the North Channel next summer, and you see a 14 foot Lund putting by, loaded down with camping gear and a couple of hounds, that'll be me.

At least we won't have to wait for the bridge to open in Little Current.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

US Air Force now flying support missions for al Qaeda in Syria

Yup, that al Qaeda, our worst enemies who brought down the twin towers etc.

I was a little confused about the tale of the al Raqqa Brigades fighting ISIS in Kobani.

So I did a little research.

Far from "coming out of nowhere," ISIS was a well documented presence in Raqqa a year and a half ago.

Here's a nice over-view of the infighting among various jihadi groups that clearly shows that the al Raqqa Brigades abandoned the Free Syrian Army and aligned themselves with al Qaeda.

Here's a story that suggests the fall of Raqqa happened with the connivance of the Assad regime.

The city of Raqqa was the scene of much internecine combat between al-Qaeda aligned jihadis and ISIS factions. ISIS eventually prevailed.

That fight has in the last month been transferred to Kobani, where ISIS and the al Qaeda factions are again fighting for supremacy.

This battle is being sold in Western media as a Kurds vs. Islamic State struggle. In reality it's a continuation of the battle between ISIS and al Qaeda, in which the Kurds are backing al Qaeda.

And so is the USAF.

The USAF is now al Qaeda's Air Force!

Who's fighting who in Kobani?

I don't know about you, but I'm a little confused by all the space the supposed ISIS siege of the Syrian border town of Kobani has been getting in the news.

For the most part it's a story spun to champion the valorous Kurds and demonize Turkey, because Erdogan refuses to go along with the plan, very popular among beltway strategists at the moment, to supply the Kurds with US weapons.

ISIS already have plenty of US weapons, which at the moment are being targeted by US bombs.

We know that the Kurds are the good guys here, because they are fighting ISIS, although they were never fighting the evil Assad all that hard, and remain on the official US terror list.

The evil Assad, by the way, was not considered all that evil until very recently.
Evil Assad has chit-chat with John Kerry

Evil Assad meets her Maj

So now Assad is a bad guy, and the ISIS moderates we trained and armed have morphed into even badder guys, so we have to fly over Syria to bomb the Syrian petroleum infrastructure, which apparently hurts ISIS, who are really really bad because they do not respect the rights of women, whereas the Kurds are the good guys who although they are a culture that practices female genital mutilation, are otherwise all aboard for the equal rights of women.

Or something like that.

Meanwhile, even though this Kobani deal has been spun as the evil ISIS vs. the hard-pressed Kurds, today it emerges that while Kobani may have been a predominantly Kurdish city, it's not just Kurds fighting ISIS, but other Islamist groups fighting ISIS as well.

Like the al-Raqqa Brigades, who are sometimes linked to al Qaeda and sometimes not, and possibly the al-Nussra Front, who are also sometimes al Qaeda, and sometimes not and sometimes associated with ISIS... gosh, it's confusing!

It would probably be just as true to spin Kobani as an al-Qaeda attack on ISIS, with the Kurds throwing their lot in with Qaeda for the moment, and the US Air Force serving, at least for the moment, as the al-Qaeda Air Force.

At least there's one thing not confusing; every bomb and bullet flying in either direction was paid for directly or indirectly by the US taxpayer!

That's got to warm the hearts of the war profiteers.  






Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Ebola sweepstakes

Ebola is the NEXT BIG THING that you and your loved ones must fear.

Fear is good!

Fear will stampede millions of consumers into buying any anti-Ebola vaccine they can get their hands on.

At any price!

Here's why it's so important for Ebola to make a beach-head in the rich world. Look what happened to Sovaldi. That's a hep C cure that costs American consumers $84,000. It's available overseas for as little as $300 in its generic versions. When you are a pharmaceutical company peddling cures to terminal illness, you want customers who can pay!

The generics who dole out Sovaldi rip-offs at $300 per treatment are making money, but think of how much more money you can make at $84,000 per!

What's going on right now behind the Ebola scenes is that armies of patent attorneys, intellectual property wizards, and financial wheeler-dealers are jockeying for position to have their Ebola cure be the first to market.

Hundreds of billions of dollars are at stake.

A tiny start-up in Iowa scored the latest media triumph when it was revealed that they held commercial rights to an Ebola vaccine developed in Winnipeg by the Canadian government. NewLink Genetics raised 40 millions in its 2011 IPO. You can find more than that under the couch cushions in the house of Big Pharma.

A little bit of positive media, and NewLink will be a billion dollar concern virtually overnight.

There's big money in Ebola.

Baron Black's attack on Iran would be suicide for Israel

That's why it doesn't happen.

Conrad "Monty" Black's prescription for peace in the Middle East, written on a day he got into the cooking sherry a little earlier than usual, speculates that in the current climate of chaos wrought in the region by the Nations of Virtue, it might be a good idea if Israel, perhaps in concert with Turkey and Saudi Arabia, eliminated the threat of the imaginary Iranian nukes once and for all. (There had to be more than sherry at work here...)

Black, former publisher of the JPost, still hews to the Likud party line, and as the world knows, the Iran nuke has been a bee in Bibi's bonnet for a quarter century now. Yes, those Iranian nuclear engineers have been months away from a nuclear weapon since the early nineties!

So why does the IAF not do something about it?

The IAF/IDF at the upper echelons are populated with serious people who don't take the yapping of ultra-nationalist politicians and armchair warmongers seriously. While Conrad Black can gloat about the IDF's "thrashing" of Hamas from his mansion in Toronto, IDF boss Benny Gantz acknowledges the courage of the Hamas fighters. Gantz understands that the only result of an unnecessary war that took the lives of five dozen IDF troops was to enhance the prestige of Hamas among the Palestinians.

That's what Mr. Black calls a thrashing of Hamas. The only thing thrashed by Operation Over the Edge was Israel's standing in world opinion.

The serious people understand the limits of what the IDF can and cannot do. They can't destroy Hezbollah, they can't destroy Hamas, and they certainly won't destroy Iran. Even in a nuclear first strike, there will be enough assets left over among Iran and her allies that Israel would be obliterated.

For their part, the Iranians understand that any attack on Israel would be suicidal as well.

What we've got here is MAD lite. Might as well get used to it, live with it, and make the best of it. The threat of mutually assured destruction kept the peace between NATO and the Soviet bloc for 50 years; it can do the same for Iran and Israel.


Saudi Arabia saves Ukraine from Putin - Conrad Black

That astonishing revelation comes from no less an armchair general than disgraced peer, convicted fraudster, and failed media magnate Conrad Black.

As Conrad sees it, Putin's order to have Russian troops pull back from the Ukraine border last week was not a goodwill gesture in the ongoing dialogue with Ukraine PM Poroshenko, but the result of pressure put on Russia by Saudi Arabia!

Conrad's musings in the National Post are a toxic stew of Islamophobia, Putin-bashing and wishful thinking.

  • ISIS is fading and will be beaten by the Kurds
  • Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Israel will join forces to liberate Iran
  • more bombing will bring peace and democracy to Iraq and Syria
  • Iran is the main cause of conflict in the region... and so on.
In fact, Mr. Black pretty much gives you the standard PNAC/Likud boilerplate in one condensed easy-to-read article... I didn't have to run for the dictionary once!

And that doesn't happen very often when I'm reading anything by CB.

Mr. Black, in spite of the many set-backs he has suffered over the past two decades, remains an entertaining spokesman for the smug and self-righteous Western elites. 

Too bad he gets so much so wrong!

Ten years ago, with oil under $50, western companies were pouring billions into the Russian oil fields because it was profitable for them to do so at that price. Now that the infrastructure is in place Russia isn't going to be crippled by a price of $70, but the fracking industry behind America's petrol-renaissance will be.

There goes America's so-called economic recovery. 

"Demented theocrats" in Tehran aren't the biggest obstacle to peace in the region; that would be the demented theocrats in Washington who truly believe, in their hearts, in America's God-given exceptionalism.

The Arab people have been mis-governed for the past 65 years because American power has propped up corrupt and repressive governments, and forced repeated wars on the region to affect regime change whenever the vassals strayed too far from their script.


The many uses of ISIS

It has become abundantly clear that the ruling elites throughout the Nations of Virtue have seldom enjoyed such a useful enemy as ISIS.

In the first place, having hordes of disaffected Muslim youth abandon the Islamic ghettos of the great European cities to make jihad in Syria and Iraq serves as a valuable pressure-relief valve. Let them roam around in the deserts of the Levant slaughtering other Muslims, instead of making mischief in Stockholm and Marseilles.

The fear of what these radicalised youth could get up to when they come home in turn gives our rulers another lever with which to further tamp down our ever-eroding civil liberties. What are a few more limits on citizenship and freedom if they'll keep us safe from these fanatics?

Then there is the never-ending gravy train created by the need to train and provision forces that are willing to fight ISIS, because aside from dropping bombs and missiles from a safe distance, we're not. That creates vast wealth for myriad Western defence contractors, sub-contractors, consultants, and weapons manufacturers of all stripes.

ISIS also helps draw the eye away from the systemic human rights abuses among our allies in the region. What's another child shot dead in Gaza by the IDF when compared to this ISIS rampage? What's another dozen be-headings in Saudi Arabia when the blood-thirsty goons of ISIS be-head Western journalists?

And what a great excuse to send our warplanes into Syria to soften up that stubborn al-Assad, all in the name of supporting the moderate opposition, mind you!

Finally, the closer we can come to Iran's borders in the name of fighting ISIS, the shorter that final drive into Tehran will be!

By God, if fate had not provided us with such an extravagantly useful enemy, we would have had to invent them!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Twilight in Lebanon

As darkness descends on Lebanon, the Beirut Star has this journalistic gem to help ease the minds of anxious Beirutis.

Porsche or BMW, what's it gonna be? The barbarians may be at the gates, but there's still time to decide one way or another in this "clash of the titans."

Frankly, I'd go for the Porsche. Due to the electronic rev-limiter on the BMW, the Porsche can get the hell outta town a whole lot faster. Unfortunately, there's not a whole lot of places to go.

Still, for Beirutis of means, there is still time to make a choice. In a year or two the only vehicles on the streets and highways of Lebanon will be Toyotas.

That ain't no burqa... Fashion Week in Instanbul

Turkey is a very schizophrenic country. A functioning democracy ruled by an autocrat, a Muslim Brotherhood franchise, and a made member of the NATO gang all rolled into one fascinating ball 'o contradictions.

So while a majority of Turkish women wear head scarves, and burqas and niqabs can be seen in the streets, Istanbul also hosts a Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, brought to you by American Express.

That ain't no burqa, baby!


Hey, you could be in Milan or Paris! Sadly, this year could mark the final edition of the Mercedes Benz Istanbul Fashion Week. By next October those Islamic State types who Turkey has been manufacturing and shipping next door en masse for the past three years may be running the country. Instead, it'll be burqas and niqabs up and down the runways, at the Toyota Traditional Garment Festival Week.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The stupidity of having losers provide combat training

The Al Jazeera network has a story on view that questions the efficacy of the billions of dollars the US taxpayer has spent in "training" foreign forces.

Well, that's a no-brainer. If you x out Grenada and Panama, the US military hasn't actually won anything since the 1940's, and even that is debatable. After all, any serious student of the WW 2 will readily acknowledge that it was the Red Army that won that one, not the US of A.

Somehow the US military-industrial complex is able to maintain the illusion of being the go-to guys for global dominance.

I don't know... sounds lame to me.

On 9-11, 19 towellers breached every bulwark of the most powerful nation on earth to bring down the twin towers... and that other tower, that was never hit by anything, a few hours later.

Then the most powerful nation on earth invaded Afghanistan, and left ten years later, declaring victory and pleading with the locals to let them stay a while longer, because there were more hearts and minds to be won, and a premature withdrawal would just hand the country to the towelheads who actually live there and own the place.

And then there was Iraq, the cradle of civilization, completely rubbished by the greatest democracy in the history of history... another great successful failure for the Washington warmongers.

But yet, we continue with the imbecilic charade of having to mobilize resistance to those who are resisting our tender ministrations of freedom and democracy...

Apparently all that our bum-boys need is a little more "training" from the guys who have lost every war they've started since 1945.

Baby Biden busted for blow

Busted right out of the US Navy!

You have to love those alliterations, eh? I may not be the master of alliteration, but you gotta admit I'm a pretty serious amateur.

Now, I'd guess that if some hapless nigger from oh, someplace like Ferguson Mo. got busted out of the US Navy for cocaine consumption, we'd all agree it serves him right, and that the consequences, (a lifetime of unemployability eked out on the margins of society, in and out of jail and never out of poverty) are the just desserts for taking a taste of the Peruvian nose candy.

But if, on the other hand, a soiled and spoiled rich-kid douche-bag gets busted, we find it's only natural that he end up as... oh, maybe a big cheese in some investment house, and a leader in Ukraine's nascent fracking industry.

That's just the natural order of things, ain't it?

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The retardation of the nation; pol slammed for ignoring unconfirmed reports

I think we've figured out a way to lower the bar when it's already out cold; here's a story that scolds a politician for ignoring unconfirmed reports.

Yup, NDP boss Tom Mulcair is even a bit more dodgy than before because he's not helping propagate unconfirmed rumours. Frankly, ignoring unconfirmed rumours should be a feather in the cap of any politician, should it not?

No, Mulcair has the high ground on this one; where he failed, and proved himself the shallow character that many think he is, was in his silence on Gaza.

But good on you for ignoring unconfirmed reports, Tom.

Royal Canadian Navy sinking fast

It's utterly tragic what is happening in the RCN.

Big Steve sees the Navy as a prop for photo-ops and little else.

The vastly over-hyped new build program that launched so many photo-ops and press releases a couple of years ago has yet to launch a single ship. In fact, it has yet to cut the first steel to start building a single ship.

That seems to be the strategy of Commander-in-Chief Big Steve; wow 'em at the photo op and hope they forget the details.

In terms of operational capabilities, it galls me no end that those beautiful frigates we built at Saint John Shipbuilding became police dingys in America's interminable "war on drugs." Sorry, but we didn't build those warships for the war on drugs.

We built them to defend Canada.

So twenty-five years later Canada is so bereft of sea-going capacity that Big Steve had to charter Russian ships for his most recent photo-ops in the Arctic, a fact slyly omitted from most of the front page coverage of that historic and heroic discovery of the Franklin Expedition ships.

That's beyond pathetic.

As a pacifist, I'm somewhat conflicted about having my government build warships. But if you carefully weigh the pros against the cons, there's much to be said about the new build program, especially as a driver of skills training and economic development.

However, if the main thrust of the program was to provide the PM with patriotic photo-ops and the opportunity for lots of jingoistic rhetoric, the program has been a complete fraud.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Old School

Here's a wee vignette straight outta 1955, except it happened this week right up here in rural Canada.

A couple of weeks ago I had the main unit in the Falling Downs motor pool puke her guts out right there on Tenth Avenue. Thanks to the smarts of the Farm Manager, the fallout and inconvenience was, because of our CAA membership, not nearly as close to catastrophic as it otherwise might have been.

You'll recall the foundation myth of the Mustang 50. What I've failed to keep you abreast of is the medical condition of said Mustang.

Truth is, she's been getting a little unsteady on her feet.

As the old Honda Accord burps her last on a side-street off Tenth, a guy comes out of a house, tells me he could tell by the Honda's last gasps what killed her, and says "if ya ever need a real mechanic call Jimmie up in your neck of the woods."

Right away, I'm thinking there are forces at work, channelling the late great master mechanic of all time, Jimmie Lippert.

I make a phone call. This new Jimmie will exorcize the demons haunting the Mustang 50.

He says his magic will be done by Friday.

But I don't get there till Saturday. I see the Mustang 50, but I don't see Jimmy.

The Mustang is unlocked and the key is in the ignition.

I reach in and twist the key, rewarded instantly by that only-in-America v-8 exhaust burble...

The Mustang 50 has been successfully exorcised!

Long story short, Jimmy wasn't around but I happened into his dear Mother. She didn't have a clue what the bill might be. She's from a world where, to this day, nobody locks their front door. And they leave car keys in the ignition always, because that way you'll always know where they are, which is exactly where they're supposed to be anyways!

So I press $400 cash in her hand and tell her to tell Jimmie that if I still owe him, to give me a call. I figure that's on the low side for an exorcism on a 25 year old Mustang.

I hear nothing for a few days, so I figure I want to drop in and just clear the air in case I owe a little more. After all, maybe he's pissed I just sorta helped myself to my car after a major repair, without discussing anything, including the bill.

Jimmie tells me he owes ME money.

Hands me 300 bucks.

Where else would that happen today?





Po' chic organic farmin'

I know a little bit about farming. Worked on a farm summers and school-season evenings. Done it all; plow, disc, harrow,cultivate, seed, bale,  and so forth.

I didn't know much but I knew it was a tough gig. The vast majority of the old school farmers, guys with one or two hundred acres, now make their main income working off the farm. While the small beef herd may still make you $20,000 in a good year, just like it has for the past 50 years, you can't raise a family on that any more.

That's one of the reasons the organic farm I toured last year made such an impact. It was a hundred acres tied in to one of those "community supported agriculture" outfits.

Ya gotta be careful here, because after all, the words "community" and "communism" are fruits of the same roots...

Anyway, Missy with her hundred acres gets over 60 thousands up front from her band of organic food acolytes. You can actually have a life on that!

And she's doing that with intensive cultivation of approximately five acres of her hundred acres farm. The rest is hosting free-range grass-fed beef.

But guess what? Even five acres of kitchen/market garden takes intensive cultivation to cultivate. A five acre plot is essentially full time work for five people.

$60,000 can't pay five workers a living wage. And even if it did, there'd be nothing left over to pay the owner's mortgage.

So Miss Organic Farmer get's around that conundrum by hiring five "interns."

And the thing is, she can't really pay them, so she ends up with a bunch of middle-class idealist young professionals who aspire to be organic farmers, and who have the luxury of having a "real" career to subsidize their idealism and their organic farming aspirations.

Is this a viable model for our food supply?

How long can Erdogan defy the Empire?

It should be obvious by now that America and the NATO me-too states are spoiling for a regional war in a last desperate attempt to have their way with Assad, and insofar as it is an "independent" proto-state (of which I'm not convinced) Islamic State as well. Unfortunately, the Coalition of the Courageous is determined to have others fight that war on their behalf.

That's proving to be a problem. The Washington warmongers can't at this point be seen to give Assad a reprieve in his fight with Isis. The next most effective anti-ISIS forces are the Shia, who will always have more allegiance to Iran. The Kurds are next up, but they have proven ineffective and are themselves waiting for a NATO intervention to save them from the NATO-created Islamic State.

That leaves Turkey. Having been pressured to take a leading role in the creation of ISIS, Erdogan is in no rush to be pushed into providing the boots for America's ground war in Syria. The utterly pathetic hypocrisy Biden voiced when he accused Turkey of creating ISIS recently didn't go over well. This blog speculated two years ago that Assad could very well outlast Erdogan, a result that seems even likelier today.

The news that Turkey's thirty-year war on its Kurds has become a hot war again can only hasten Erdogan's demise. The propaganda organs of the Empire have lavished a lot of fawning attention on the Kurds for the past couple of years. They're the people in the neighbourhood who Israel can work with, so they're obviously the good guys, although we have by some oversight neglected erasing them from our ever-fickle "terror" lists.

So, Erdogan gets begonced, a more pliable leadership will be installed, and voila, America's regional war will have its boots on the ground!

And NATO will be spared the incongruity of a member state in the crusader alliance governed by the Muslim Brotherhood.

Monday, October 13, 2014

ISIS rapidly gaining mainstream support throughout Arab world

This story about football fans chanting their support for Islamic State at a match in Morocco should give us pause.

But it won't.

Instead, today we are treated to yet another press release from Canada's know-nothing Foreign Minister, Baird the Bombastic. ISIL is just a gang of terrorists, don't you know, who are bent on raping and pillaging and slaughtering anyone who stands in their way as they seek to spread their hateful ideology throughout Iraq and Syria... which apparently reinforces our moral duty to stop their murderous rampage, which we will do in concert with "our allies."

That would be these folks:



Sorry Mr. Baird, your claim to the moral high ground rings a little hollow. We may have forgotten Abu Ghraib here in the Nations of Virtue, but you can bet they haven't in Iraq.

The reason Islamic State finds a receptive audience is because at long last the Arab street has a champion that promises to put the last hundred years of humiliation behind them.

In other developments, Baird also announced today that he is jetting to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to discuss our "strong and growing relationships" with the ruling elites of those flourishing democracies.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

While NED mischief-making has been exposed as a total fraud in Libya, Syria, and Ukraine, we're still giving Hong Kong the benefit of the doubt?

Of course we are!

Because millions can be aroused by the inspirational example of a young lad who is born with a yearning for freedom and democracy in his heart...

Fuck off already; this entire HK democracy gambit is phonier than a three dollar bill.

Does anybody with their wits about them seriously believe that the people of Hong Kong are spontaneously rising up in revolt because Beijing wants to hold veto power over who can run for mayor?

That's beyond retarded!

But the National Endowment for Democracy and its affiliates, all "NGO's" funded by the US government, have been seeding dissent in Hong Kong for many years.

Given the successes of past NED democracy promotion campaigns, I suppose that we can take comfort in the prospect of having Hong Kong look more like Libya down the road.

First Islamist in NHL declares Maple Leafs don't need fans

At some level he's probably right.

Pretty much all the chairs at Air Canada Centre are leased out to corporate nabobs who never show up anyway, unless there's a serious game on deck. Their seats are filled with their poor cousins and various freeloaders who are not necessarily committed to the success of the Maple Leafs.

But if you don't mind me saying so, it's more than a bit uppity for Kadri to voice this complaint.

Some poor pathetic fan who has no doubt been a Leaf's booster his whole life, tosses his Leafs jersey on the ice, a jersey that he probably spent over a hundred bucks for at the wildly over-priced memorabilia kiosk in the lobby, because he is totally disgusted with the game his Leafs are putting on.

And Kadri has the gall to opine that his team does not need fans like that!?

Memo to Kadri;

Hey asshole, your fan base doesn't need a team like this. Fuck off already with your opinionating, and if you're not up to playing hockey, make room for people who want to.

Thank you,

A Leafs fan.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Ding-a-ding-dang my ding along ding-dang...

Why why why?.....

Because it's these guys.

Ding-a-ding-dang indeed...

I really don't know to what extent Ministry has been mainstreamed.

Jesus built my hotrod? Now that's inspired!

It's really hard to make the same old sound fresh, but by God, I think these guys were on top of it.

Ding a ding dang my ding along ling long, ding ding a ling ling long.


Ebola can only spread because there's millions of first-worlders prepared to take a cheap holiday in someone else's misery

Johnny Rotten and the Sex Pistols sang about that back in 1977.

The so-called industry of tourism has never been about anything other than rich-world folks having a lark at the expense of the others.

I've always found the very concept repugnant.

Oh ya, the locals will do their traditional dance for a five dollar tip...

Fuck that.

Even for the most liberal and well-intentioned do-gooders on the planet, tourism is a trap.

But they fall into it willingly, and they protest its demise when tourism hotspots go out of bounds because, well, there are some "radicals" lurking in the underbrush on the route to their wilderness safari...

It's not about radicals.

It's about basic human dignity.

A cheap holiday in someone else's misery will never be anything other than opportunistic and exploitative, no matter how much the tourism "industry" tries to pretty it up.




If it's not one f@ckin' thing it's another...

After finishing off the Saturday Globe and Mail this morning I figured I'd take advantage of the weather and head out to the woodlot with old Rusty and the hounds and grab a couple cords of firewood.

There wasn't a whole lot in it by the way. It's what they call a slow news day, or week... Renzetti had an agreeable column. There's a mildly interesting Q and A with former GG Adrienne Clarkson, but overall, nothing blogworthy. Kinda felt I didn't get my $3.75 worth, which is what you pay for the Globe once they truck it this far into the hinterland.

Wood wise, I'm about half way to where I'd like to be. It'll take 16-20 cord to avoid calling the oil truck, and by my calculations I'm at about ten. I don't want to risk a repeat of last year, when we ran out of wood mid-January, and then spent $4,000 plus on furnace oil in the next four months, which totally decimated the property-tax budget, which resulted in nasty letters from the township threatening to sell the farm for tax arrears, and oh my goodness, it was all we could do to hang on to Falling Downs.

So I don't want to go there again.

I've been cutting dead stuff along the fence lines, mostly elm. I head to the second field in from the corner. There's a bit of a gully to traverse, and it's a bit wet in there due to all the rain we've had the last couple weeks.

Old Rusty is still licensed for the road and fully insured, but this is no longer a vehicle that you drive with confidence on the public highways. She's a farm truck. Last week the power steering went for a shit. Had to muscle her through the Timmy's drive-through. That armstrong steering gets you a full upper-body workout and a coffee when you have to go through the drive-through at Timmy's in a 5,000 lb. truck with no power steering.

Made it through the gully in 4x4 mode with my foot on the gas. Took down three dead elms on the fence-line. I'm evolving an eye for dropping the trees so they don't hit the truck, and except for the last one, where I had to use my 30 foot tow strap to persuade a 50 foot tree to fall in the right direction, things went reasonably well. The old Stihl is working like a charm, trees don't land on the truck, the hounds have acclimatized themselves to the chainsaw and no longer run home to mommy every time I fire it up... what more could you ask for?

Then, as I'm tossing firewood into the back, I notice I have a flat tire on old Rusty.

Oh for fucks sakes!

And not just a flat tire, but a tire that's completely lost its bead - I can see six inches of aluminum rim before I see any rubber. Guess when I was traversing the hillside we were on, there was enough lateral pressure to break the bead... probably wouldn't have happened with new tires. No wonder she felt a bit tippy! I've been meaning to get new tires for a while now, but what the hell, old Rusty is mostly a farm truck now, so why bother?

Anyway, by the time I notice my destroyed tire, I got the box half full of firewood, but now I'm focussed on how to get the truck home. I make the executive decision to just drive it back on the flat tire. After all, the tire is toast anyway, and if I damage the rim, well how much can a rim be worth for a 15 year old F-150?

So, due to the flat tire, I'm nursing it through that water-filled gully... and I get stuck! For fucks sakes! I can go a few feet forward, a few feet backward, but I can't get out of the gully! Not even in 4x4! Not even in 4x4 low range!

Well, gonna have to walk home to get the tractor to pull out the truck.

For fucks sakes!

The mud is up to my knees. Me and the hounds waddle out of the gully and make it home. The tractor doesn't start...

Oh, for fucks sakes!

It's probably due to the fact that I haven't had it fired up in a couple of months.

Luckily, the Mustang 50 just got home from a check up at Jimmy's in Wiarton. Fires right up, and I use it to boost the tractor. There's another half an hour out of your perfect afternoon.

Longish story a bit shorter, I did a couple of back and forth runs between the truck and home base. I was toying with the idea of using shackles and clevises to tow old Rusty and her half load of firewood back to the house. That was not to be. I know I have the right shackles and clevises to make it happen; I just don't know where they are.

I really gotta organize my shop.

So I drove old Rusty home, once I towed her out of the gully, and it looks like there was no damage to the rim.

Bonus!

Then I walked back and brought the tractor home. After running all afternoon, at least the battery should be well charged up. Another bonus.

So after an entire afternoon spent in the great outdoors, getting maybe 3/4 of a cord of firewood, I walk in the house, pants mud-caked up to the knees, and the first words out of the Farm Manager's mouth are, "so how much wood did you get?"

Oh for fucks sakes...