Archive for the ‘Pet Theories’ Category

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Canadian Banks, Something to be proud of.

March 22, 2009

I had been thinking about this a lot recently.  Some of the more right wing people I read from the States have been arguing that this crisis does not mean that the markets need to be regulated.  While I have tended to agree with this I’ve often wondered about what regulations mean.  Then I read this article from the Globe and Mail and could not help but think maybe I’m wrong.

Former central bank governor David Dodge agrees. Canadian bank executives keenly remember that period, “and there was therefore perhaps a degree of prudence, a lack of aggressiveness, in comparison with major banks around the world,” he said.

And he gives top marks to the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, Canada’s banking regulator, for being more conservative than those in the U.S. or Britain. “I think that, from a regulatory point of view, you can say that the Canadian banks were more appropriately regulated.” (Emphasis mine)

The idea of the free market only really makes sense if you do not have powerhouses, like the American banks, that can manipulate the system.  When it comes to corporations or the Government having controls I’ll choose the Government; at least when they screw up the little guys can fire them.

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Torture, Ethics, and God

February 24, 2009

I haven’t had much time to blog, I’m on reading week, which is attempting to live up to its name.   I’ve finally gotten around to answering my good friend Matt’s (who should blog) response to my thought’s on torture.  I meant to keep it short but it kind of exploded.  You can read and add to the discussion here.

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Some thoughts on Prison.

November 14, 2008

Michael Santos has an incredible story.  In the Forbes special edition on power he tells his story of power in prison.  He talks about developing a long term vision for reintegration into society (he was senteced to 46 years in 1987, he has earned an “early” release in 2013 through good behavior, read his story and you’ll see just how good).

He also talks about the failures of the prison system in the U.S.  While we in Canada are slightly better the idea of prison is the same no matter what country you are in.

In prison, preservation of the institution trumps the needs of the individual. Unlike any other place in America I know, prison administrators rely on the threat of punishment and coercion rather than the promise of incentives to manage inmates. People who seek power inside prison walls learn to manipulate this environment. Yet as recidivism rates show, those who learn to live in prison simultaneously learn to fail in society.

I’ve often wondered about this.  Prison is punishment, not rehabilitation.  Psychopaths,those who even now psychologists have no idea how to rehabilitate, should be imprisoned, not for punishment (which doesn’t work with them) but for the safety of the wider society.  However, what about those who can be rehabilitated?  I’ll be looking further into Michael Santos’ story.  It seems a shame though that he had to work against the system to rehabilitate himself.  Could his story be used as a model to help prisoner’s reintegrate?  I’ll have more on this in the coming months.


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Big Brother Strikes Again.

February 26, 2008

And he strikes on the World of Warcraft. It appears that when terrorists have finished planning their next strike, or narrowly escaped being hit by a cruise missile, they unwind by playing MMORPGs*. These terrorists, while playing these games, discuss their crucial and sensitive plans for world domination chaos. This is why the U.S. Government needs to watch and track these games to ensure public safety.

Or maybe it’s just easier to keep tabs on citizens and youth.

Not that I’m a paranoid conspiracy theorist or anything.*

*Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games

*For the record, I don’t play these games.  I now have yet another reason not to.

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Two Wrongs…

February 16, 2008

… don’t make a right.  But enough wrongs can confuse anybody as to whether right ever was.

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Unchallenged Thought

February 11, 2008

Thinking is only thinking if it’s challenged, only then is it a verb.  Unchallenged thinking is only a thought and that, left unchallenged, is prejudice.  If you enter a conversation and there is no chance of anyone changing their perspectives it is a pointless exercise.

Where is this coming from?  Over the past few days I’ve had the opportunity, at this blog and elsewhere to witness people unwilling to accept challenges to their preconceived notions.   This frustrates me.  I’ve spent the majority of my life, with the exception of two years, in an environment that is antithetical to most of what I believe.  If you’re a Christian going through public education or university you are in an environment that at best tolerates you for your aberrant beliefs and at worst openly mocks what you believe.

Before you dismiss me and what I believe as stupid perhaps you should consider whether or not any of your perceptions of the world have ever faced serious or constant challenge.  Contrary to popular belief, you can move through life as an atheist or agnostic and never be seriously challenged intellectually.  It requires thinking to actually believe something.  Otherwise, it’s only a thought.