2014-06-21

No Foreign Temporary Workers, But Students And Graduates Can Still Work

Full time foreign students can work in Canada up to 20 hours a week. In addition, they can work in Canada up to 4 years after graduating as long as the job is somehow related to their field. In Moncton, that means hundreds of foreigners working in call centres.

Without those workers, would Sitel et al increase wages?  Bell, for example, has outsourced to call centres in India, the Philippines, Tunisia and Egypt. So there is no guarantee that the jobs filled by foreigners wouldn't simply be shipped off overseas. It is significantly easier to have workers who speak both English and French to service Canadian customers, but when you pay your workers $4 an hour, you can have them sit around and do nothing, waiting for French calls. 

That said, the Moncton call centres exist thanks to provincial subsidies and a willingness by telecoms and banks to undercut union negotiated wages. So it is perplexing to witness a room filled with foreigners. Are they making our lives better, or worse? In theory, Université de Moncton enjoys the fruits of all those foreigners filling their classrooms and contributing tuition. But if they lower salaries of local workers, or displace jobs for local students, they might be lowering the number of Canadians that can attend the university.

Walmart Will Deliver $1 Can of Ham for Free

Mind blown. Walmart will deliver a $1 can of ham to me for free via Canada Post (I live in Moncton). 

Dear Rex Murphy, Christians Need Impose Their Religion on Others

Rex Murphy seems to think that religion should over-ride democracy. 

Firstly, the idea that Christians MPs need to impose their faith on others by banning stuff is ludicrous. Christian MPs who are strongly against abortions, shouldn't have abortions. Should Muslim and Mormon Liberal MPs be allowed to leverage their Liberal party status to try to bring back prohibition? Or ban sex before marriage? Or outlaw condoms? No.

Religious radicals are free to form their own party. That's what the Conservatives did.

ww2.nationalpost.com/m/wp/blog.html?b=fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2014/06/21/rex-murphy-in-justin-trudeaus-world-christians-need-not-apply


2014-06-20

I Support the Northern Gateway Pipeline

I consider myself a progressive. I've given thousands to the NDP and
even threw a few strategic progressive dollars to the Bloc Québécois.

I also consider myself an environmentalist. Perhaps not enough to give
up my travel addiction (poverty has temporarily taken care of that),
but enough of one that I live in a downtown apartment and walk to
work.

People in Bangladesh are going to die because of global warming.

I'm writing this on an iPhone that was assembled just north of Hong
Kong in China. Parts of it were made in Taiwan and Korea. The energy
used to manufacture the iPhone was most likely derived from coal.
Ditto my computers, TV, Playbook, Kobo and iPad (did I mention I'm
poor?).

So we send Asia oil that is slightly better for the environment than
coal, they give us cool gadgets that reduce needless trips to the store
for shopping, driving around while lost, enable shortcuts, and
dramatically reduce my consumption of paper. Win, win.

More importantly, BC takes a slight environmental risk instead of
Moncton suffering the guaranteed pollution that would come from Irving
refining Alberta oil in St. John.

Moncton is where I live. Not BC. The people of Bangladesh and China
matter as much to me as the people of BC (on a per capita basis). They
are guaranteed to have millions of people die because of global
warming and coal generated air pollution. If it replaces coal, Alberta
oil would reduce both. Northern BC (where very, very few people live)
incurs a slight risk of having localised water and soil pollution. But
I live in Moncton.

The federal government has spoken. Time to move on. And if you live
anywhere near the proposed pipeline, you might want to move to
Vancouver, because as a rural Canadian, your carbon footprint is
amongst the largest in the world, and that's not cool.

2014-06-05

Justin Bourque, 24 Year-old Angry White Man

Justin Bourque murdered 3 Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers Wednesday night in Moncton. Based on his Facebook page, the alleged RCMP killer clearly loved guns. When I read his Facebook page, he still had 49 friends, many with public timelines no less scary than Bourque's.

This is what I gleaned from his public Facebook timeline:

(I'm using the present tense but I'm guessing he'll be dead when you read this.)

-He appears to be anglophone despite his last name (many of his Facebook friends live in the very English speaking suburb of Riverview). 
-He lives in a trailer park
-He has at least one black friend
-He loves guns
-He hates the police but is pro-military/militias
-He is libertarian leaning
-He admires Putin, but fears Russia will invade Canada first (before Ukraine?)
-He isn't big on writing. He prefers to repost
-He is a member of the Anonymous World Resistance Group of Facebook.
-Perhaps he was a fan of Megadeath? Well he quoted verse 1 of Hook in My Mouth on his Facebook page before going outside and starting his rampage. Perhaps he just felt the name of the group was apropos (since he was gong to have multiple victims). By the way, that song came out 26 years ago, before Justin Bourque was borne. 
-He like fishing
-He likes hunting

Mostly, he just likes guns. Also, by Moncton standards, for the first time this season, it was really hot tuesday in Moncton and quite humid the day of his murders. That's usually when people get violent.

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