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  • GRISHA
    February 14, 2012 - 10:39

    It is hard to disagree with anything you have said in a perfect world. Let me know when one passes close enough and I will hop on. For some comments on the knowledge part: I agree. But, I have recently run into a group of folks at a major university who are studying the regional accents of the US, mainly Texas. The thesis is that regional accents are becoming flattened out with time. A major portion of the study has to do with the accents of Texans of German decent in Central Texas. Having a lot of experience with those people I know exactly what they are talking about. I went to school with those folks and interacted with their parents and grandparents. They remain my close friends. It was always interesting to me and now the profs . . . and? I doubt the concludions of that study will lead to a cure for cancer or result in international disarament. But, it is costing time and money. Maybe we have a lot of that in excess to burn. As to another point, as a young psychology major in a small university we as students had a lot if interaction with faculty members. In class we heard lectuers about the vagaries of human behavior and greed, narcissim, egotism, antisocial behavior and how laughable all those traits were. I was surprised when some of the very same profs shamelessly exhibited those personality "flaws" during "departmental infighting". Weren't these supposed to be the best and most intelligent who mocked that very same behavior in lectures and whose learning and scholastism held them above all that? "Didn't you just say . . . ?" With 35+ years as a tranactional real estate lawyer and uncountable negotiation sessions behind me I believe I have a pretty good grip of the basics of human nature. Given that, I would not waste a lot of time anticipating the eventual epiphany of humans "coming together", or valuing something of "real value" that might not be in their direct personal interest or profit. But, I continue to be surprised by the actions of "people" so hope if you want to, it could happen, I guess. But hope without me.

  • Cyril Rogers
    February 11, 2012 - 19:16

    Mr. Wangersky, it is painfully obvious that our current system of government is badly bent and out of sync with the aspirations of most of our citizenry. I am frustrated that we can have a federal and provincial majority.....winners of only 25-30% of the actual voting population's support.... who clearly don't respect any position but their own and will try to bully any opposition into silence or submission. We desperately need a change in the way our politicans gain access to the corridors of power, starting with basic electoral reform. It is unconscionable to me that members take their seats with much less than 50 % of support from their riding or district but act as though they have the support 100% of their voters. Even worse, they they often choose to ignore the large numbers, often a majority, who voted against them in this "fist past the post" system we have in place. To begin with, they represent all of the electorate and not just those who voted for them. To paraphrase Jesus, "it is easy to love your supporters" but it takes a genuine politican to serve those who voted against you. More and more, we see petty despots who do just that and it is time for us, as voters, to take back control. We need reform in the worst possible way but reform that will ensure some tyrant does not hijack the process, such as happened with the federal Conservatives and PM Harper.

    • Too many parties
      February 12, 2012 - 13:08

      The downside of your suggestion is that we would end up with parties at the extreme. In NL and Canada it would be either PC/Conservative or NDP. Central parties like the Liberals would be eliminated but it looks like that's happening anyway..