Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Geurgis Jaffer coke prostitutes

Sounds like it was a good party! People acting scandalized about it are just jealous they weren't invited.

I hope Helena sticks around. She's pretty easy on the eyes unlike most of the women in parliament.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

ball hockey season is over

The winter ball hockey season came to an end last night. We lost in the semi finals. It was a close game, tied early in the third period. But the other team was very strong and they pulled away and cruised to the win.

It was a difficult winter season. The team went winless, 0-10, in the regular season. Then remarkably we beat the first place team in the quarter finals last week.

That's pretty disappointing, winless regular season. The way the league works is there's a draft each fall [September - December] and winter [January - April] season. The team captain just had a bad draft and the team didn't really gel. Oh well the nice thing is that in the fall the rosters will be reshuffled and it's a fresh start for everyone.

About the fall. In fall 2009 there was around 25% turnover in the players in the league. A result of this was that the league became younger, faster, and more skilled. Unfortunately my trajectory is in the opposite direction. So for this September I need to decide if I'm going to return for another season or retire. If I had to decide today I would retire. But I'll reevaluate in August and decide then. It's enjoyable at times but there are other activities I'm interested in too.

Speaking of other activities. I bought a can of tennis balls last week. I picked up some Wilson which were among the few not made in China. I mentioned to a couple of facebook friends who I played with in the past we should get out and hit this year. They both responded positively so hopefully when it warms up a bit we can follow through and make it happen. I haven't played tennis since around the late 90s so I'm looking forward to it.

Monday, April 12, 2010

NDP budget in Nova Scotia

I saw the NDP in Nova Scotia released their first budget.

All in all it's not too bad really. The NDP seem to grasp that these three things cannot coexist.

  • insane government spending
  • insane government borrowing
  • low and declining taxes
So predictably the NDP chose to raise taxes. No surprise there, what did anyone who voted for them expect? And lol at the bogus shock and anger about the defecit and tax increases. With the government finances the NDP realized it's better to ask forgiveness than permission. If they can make good the promise to eliminate the defecit in four years they may stand a chance when they have to answer to the voters again.

One important thing about the defecit. It's not $212 million, it's $712 million. There was an extra $500 million borrowed and poured directly into the civil service pension fund - nice work if you can get it. That's $50,000 per existing civil servant today. I'd like to see my RRSP topped up with a $50K catch up contribution.

Overall though on the civil service pensions they did take some important steps to reign in an excessively generous pension scheme. Indexing seems to be out, retirement ages have been increased a tiny bit, the survivors benefit is cut from 66% to 60% (a 9% pay cut, brave of the NDP to pick on that group). Plus a 10% reduction in active head count over the next four years the government has made a good faith attempt to share the sacrifice around the civil service pension fund.

The teachers pension remains insolvent but in the past around 10 years ago the province bailed them out with over $1 billion. So it would be entirely inappropriate for any new taxpayer money to go into the teachers pension fund. The cuts there will have to be on the educators as the taxpayers have done their fair share and more. We'll see what the NDP does in the coming years about that, I'm not confident they'll do the right thing.

This NDP budget reminds me of the first John Savage liberal budget. During the 1993 campaign Savage ran against the defecit. Claiming that it was more important to create jobs, we can't worry about it at this time, we have to deal with the recession, blah blah blah. Although once elected the good man Dr. Savage suddenly made the defecit a top priority, infuriating many of the big spenders who expected him to ignore the defecit and go on a spending and borrowing binge. He did the right thing for the people and eliminated the defecit. So maybe there's hope for this NDP government. Nothing focuses the mind quite like being broke eh Graham Steele.

One thing I couldn't help but notice. I recall back in high school in the mid 80s people were rightfully alarmed that health, education, and the welfare system had grown to the point where they consumed 57% of the provincial budget. Today a generation later and now health and education alone consume 60% of the budget. Wow. This spending growth in these two programs can't be sustained much longer before it collapses the entire government.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

The Breach by Patrick Lee

I just finished another book. It was The Breach by Patrick Lee. It was a very entertaining book and a fast read. Some great plot twists to keep the reader interested. It's the story of a high energy physics experiment in 1979 gone awry which opens up a mystic portal to an unseen other world. From this portal comes various objects, tools and gadgets that can do mostly evil on humanity. The story is about a particular powerful and generally malevolent entity called the Whisper and the battle between "Tangent" and "hostiles" around possession and control of Whisper.

The main character is a tough ex-cop turned murderer Travis Chase just out of jail on a hiking trip to find himself in remote Northern Alaska. He makes an incredible discovery and gets tangled up in the drama around Whisper. The bodies pile up fast in this book and Travis gets his share of the action. It was a good book it reminded me of the nearly believable scientific style of Michael Crichton and intrigue storytelling a bit like Frederick Forsyth.

There are apparently a series of Travis Chase titles of which The Breach is one. I hope the library has the others since I'd like to read them too.

Saturday, April 03, 2010


My taxes are now done and mailed. Hopefully will hear back positively in 3-4 weeks. I calculated a refund so hopefully that will materialize. I did my own taxes this year for a change, first time since like 2003 or so. After last year with HR block I noticed my tax situation is considerably less complicated than in previous years. Indeed it was pretty straightforward if not time consuming to do them myself. It was satisfying though to be able to do my own again.

Last weekend I caught Asia&NuGruv at the Red Fox. They were really good and entertaining. Well worth the $5 cover. And happy birthday Neala. I've never seen that many people at the Fox. It was Tony who called me to say he was heading down. It's good to still have a few friends who I hear from occasionally. Although I'm pretty neglectful and seldom contact them to do anything. And the tall lead singer on that band is just smoking hot. Asia herself isn't too bad either.

At the Fox Tony mentioned he's interested in getting out to play tennis. All right, I've wanted to play for a while. I've got a couple of rackets, including my Prince racket from a yard sale a while back. So when it warms up a bit more I should make an effort to hit again for the first time in like forever. I last played tennis with Tony we were semi-regulars in high school through to around 1990 or so. This might be all I need to get moving on tennis again, plus a new can of Penn or Wilson tennis balls.

Friday, April 02, 2010

people of Nova Scotia - just say no to taxpayer funded marijuana

I don't subscribe to the Comical Herald but I did happen to see the story of Sally Campbell. sigh.

Ms. Cambell just won a lawsuit ordering the Nova Scotia department of social services to pay for her medical marijuana. I look at this and I just can't countenance it. Here's Sally's story.

  • long term welfare recipient
  • multiple significant health problems treated by the people of Nova Scotia at no expense to Ms. Campbell including hepatitis C, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, hypothyroidism, liver disease and disc degeneration
  • existing drug costs already picked up by the people of Nova Scotia
  • her lawsuit against the province was from legal aid, a government funded entity
I mean where does it end? How much can the people of Nova Scotia be asked to do for Sally Campbell? Now we have to pay for her marijuana too? When can we draw the line and say sorry, we just can't afford it.

Given we have a $1.5 million per day defecit in Nova Scotia in my opinion it is incredibly selfish of Ms. Campbell and her legal aid lawyer to be trying to impose new expenses at this time. We can't even afford what we're doing today. sigh, the whole thing is failing.

The government on behalf of the people should not be paying for marijuana for welfare recipients. There has to be a limit. We have to set a boundary somewhere. Let Sally buy her own dope or go without. It should also be made legal to grow her own.

The statute should be amended to specifically exclude marijuana or the government should set the decision aside with POGG in the public interest.