i have many internal debates, like should we legalize marijuana, or allow sex workers, or research stem-cells, or explore space, or use nuclear power? is there a god or goddess? is democracy better than oligarchy? then this world comes crashing in. soon, we have a municipal election. there are signs all over town. be nice to have a sign from god. i wonder….
as for nuclear: since high school i have questioned its viability. fukushima and chernobyl are on-going disasters. now ontario power generation (opg) proposes to store nuclear waste near lake huron. that doesn’t sound very smart. nor does refurbishing the ageing darlington nuclear power plant. instead, many wonder why we don’t import clean, renewable, cheaper power from quebec (includes a link to the premier’s website). nuclear waste lasts hundreds of thousands of years; our flegling democracy is barely two centuries old.
we may figure out that we shouldn’t have generated nuclear waste. but we have already started generating nuclear waste. maybe we should use the precautionary principle and stop.
Tuesday, 2014 October 14
Jean Vanier writes, ‘We have to learn to draw on our suffering, distress and setbacks so that we can grow spiritually. It is so easy for us to get locked into frustration, anger and depression.’
db and i played chess–a lot of chess.
In 1828, after nearly fifty years’ work, Noah Webster published An American Dictionary of the English Language, with 70,000 entries. ‘He added new American words like skunk, chowder, and squash. He [changed] some spellings, like musick…, centre to end in “er” instead of “re,” or … plough to plow…. Some of his changes didn’t catch on, like changing women to wimmen, or tongue to tung.‘
Here are Six Cheerful Couplets on Death by Michael Blumenthal:
Most things won’t happen, Larkin said,
But this one will: We will be dead.
The saddest thing, in each context,
Is knowing that we could be next.
Some take the bus, some take the train,
Some die in sleep, the rest in pain
But of one thing we can be sure:
All die imperfect, each impure
Some wishing that they had been better,
Others worse, but no one deader.
Shoes left, like Buddhists, at the door:
Those won’t be needed anymore.
Weekend, 2014 October 18 & 19
i spent part of friday evening writing our conservative mp, after reading suzuki’s article on the environment commissioner’s report (link below). i’ll let you know what his answer, if any, is. here is the letter:
this is disturbing. according to the david suzuki foundation, a ‘report [from canada’s commissioner of the environment and sustainable development] also found government reporting on emissions to be misleading, especially in not giving due credit. For example, what little progress has been made in reducing Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions comes mainly from Ontario’s move to shut down its coal-powered generators. And total emissions continue to rise. “There’s no overall plan, national plan, for how we’re going to achieve our target,” [julie] Gelfand [the commissioner] told reporters at a news conference. “And climate change is affecting all Canadians.” She also noted the federal committee responsible for the climate plan hasn’t met in three years.’
A-word-a-day notes that ‘there are instances when these mispronunciations become standard. The word we know as tusk was originally tux. And it happens in other languages as well. The French fromage (cheese) is an alteration of formage (forming).’ I am partial to fromage because it rhymes with ladage.