Drooling over mayor all wet
RE Winners and Losers (NOW, December 27, 2007-January 2, 2008). For heaven’s sake, get yourself a bib to catch your drool! The drippings are clearly clouding your ability to see the mayor’s failures over the past four years.
Foodshare bugging our kids
RE From The Mouths Of Babes (NOW, December 27-January 2). I am sorry that NOW’s editors feel compelled to ridicule the efforts of children to save their own park.
Foodshare and our councillor rammed through a proposal to replace half the open area of our small local park (Erwin Krickhahn Park) with vegetable garden plots.
Foodshare organizers seemed to genuinely believe their vegetable plots would be better for children than the open area that is actually preferred by children and adult residents. The children’s placards were part of residents’ efforts to acquaint Foodshare with reality. It took a loud meeting attended by about 100 people to get them to back off.
Despite enjoying the support of the mayor and the media, Foodshare has antagonized many residents since coming to the west end in 2006.
That’s a story Now might want to look into.
Guilt-tripping Jewish fund
Golly, it just wouldn’t be the holiday season of cheer and goodwill without yet another specious attack on Israel and the Jewish community from the Trotskyites and terrorist apologists at NOW.
Funny how your skewed account of ethnic cleansing in the Mideast ignores decades of Arab jihadist attempts to “push the Jews into the sea” (NOW, December 20-26).
While you’re seeking to guilt-trip Canadian donors to the Jewish National Fund, isn’t it awkward to learn that Canadian taxpayers have also funded schools in the Palestinian territories whose textbooks obliterate Israel from maps of the Mideast region? Where’s your outrage and letter campaign to our foreign affairs and international development reps in Ottawa?
In front of my local synagogue is a sign that reads, JNF – Water, Trees, Land.
But there is no hint of the fact that the JNF on the ruins of Palestinian communities built new Jewish-only communities.No mention of the fact that all JNF-owned real estate in Israel (approximately 625,000 acres) is for Jews only. No Arabs allowed.
This racist policy cannot be upheld in a democracy.The JNF enjoys charitable status in Canada, but it’s no charity.
Regarding Alice Klein’s 'Let’s Pull It Together' (NOW, December 20-26). Putting aside the question of the electability of a centre-left green coalition, there are plenty of reasons why an NDP-Liberal-Green coalition will never happen.
For starters, the Liberals are neither a left-wing nor a green party. The Liberals in the Chretien-Martin years governed to the right, cutting government spending ever further and deeper while implementing income tax cuts for the wealthy.
That analysis is completely absent from Klein’s article, save for a minuscule reference to the Liberals’ “appalling record on Kyoto.”
That this fundamental ideological difference, and not political mud-throwing, might actually be the reason why the NDP will not form a coalition with the Liberals doesn’t even factor into Klein’s reasoning.
For all her talk about the need to defeat Stephen Harper, a Liberal-led “left-green” coalition would be a distinction without a difference.
Why worry about the NDP?
As a co-founder of the Green Party, I agree that our foremost allegiance must be to our planet and its inhabitants’ future (it says so right in our Green Party Constitution) and not to partisanship. Electing Greens is only one part of the equation for realizing needed changes in the ecological, social and democratic sphere.
However, I am curious why you worry that the NDP may disappear and at the same time say this is the time of opportunity for the NDP.
Is the idea that the NDP may disappear based on the fact that we Greens now have a chance? Is it based on the fact that recently, for the first time, we nationally outpolled the NDP? If that makes you worry, why worry? Won’t it mean that the Greens, who are a newer and more comprehensively anchored party and who were born out of a movement that saw the need for a more modern political paradigm, would eventually replace the NDP and actually finally implement those policies most of the other parties have started to parrot?
Dion with no regrets
One cannot but fret over the state of progressive politics in this country when reading your UpFront attack on Stéphane Dion for “stealing parts of the NDP platform’s focus on poverty issues” (NOW December 6-12). I would have thought we should all be delighted that the Liberal leader has staked out such an ambitious position on attacking poverty. As an active New Democrat for 40 years, I am always pleased when other parties adopt progressive policies, since that surely increases the chances that they may in fact be implemented by government.
Future cop out
RE Jerzy Smoky Dymny’s letter, Dial M For Climate Change (NOW, December 20-26). Who really gives a shit about future generations but ignorant parents of young kids anyway? The facts are, the earth is slowly dying, a billion other people and I are going to keep driving our cars, the rich neo-cons are still pulling the strings, and anyone who believes in a fucking God is either gullible or a moron.
I’ll just be surprised if I last another 50 years. Oh, and John Harkness was a dick.
Paid-for provocative art
NOW’s piece on Toronto’s murals (NOW, December 13-19) was very interesting – although I didn’t appreciate Rina Greer’s highbrow slight of illustrators when she voiced her concern that murals are becoming “merely illustration.”
Artists and illustrators both wake up in the morning and go about the business of communicating by means of compelling images, often receiving paycheques (and creative pressures) from the same sources.
There is no reason to assume that the efforts and results of the latter in our public spaces would be less sophisticated or provocative.
Life after Santa
Sheila Gostick’s 'Season’s Grimace' (NOW, December 13-19) makes a silly argument for agnosticism.
Commenting on the mean streets of Toronto and the false bonhomie of Santa, she says, “Santa is the lie that made me doubt the existence of God.”
What does the behaviour of human beings have to do with the question of belief in God?
One can doubt the presence of God if one suffers Job-like natural calamities, because He does not prevent them. Or if, after one’s beloved child or parent dies, there is not even a feeble message from them in, say, a dream. After all, the three monotheistic religions preach the significance of the afterlife.