Opening Statement



Thursday, 2 July 2020

Teacher Free Speech Summer 2020 News y Views!

LaTEr aDDiTiOns R In LargE TypE! mY Acronym Guide IS @ hErE! 
REadeRs gUiDe 2 TeaCHer fREE sPEech NeWs Y vIeWs @ HERE!  MuCh, mUch morE to coMe .....  TWeEtS @ davidchiarelli 


OH CANADA

Yankee Stay Home: Thinking of travelling to Canada this summer? On a domestic trip? Think again! Sadly, across the US, the Covid-19 infection rate continues to spike. While many Americans remain in frightening denial about the coronavirus pandemic. Like it or not, despite our warm and close ties, Canada's neighbours to the south are no longer welcome visitors here. It's a popular sentiment. Strongly felt. Quite widespread too @ NG

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has extended the Canada-US border closure until at least July 21st. Otherwise, it's too risky. Might create a second wave, as we work to re-open our economy, after successfully bending the Covid-19 curve @ Global

Covid National Debt: Canadian conservatives are wringing their hands. How will we pay off the huge debt incurred in making sure that Canadians can afford to stay safely at home? So that we are all in this together? And will survive the pandemic? Never seems to be a big concern when it comes to the billions spent on foreign wars! Or oil pipelines! And corporate welfare ball outs! But no matter.  We've done it before. We can do it again. Here's how @ Globe



Racism is Alive and Well in Canada. Unlike in the US, it's moreso a multicultural or indigenous rather than strictly a black issue. Indeed, Canada's First Nations are fed up with all the reports and commissions. The violence, racism, discrimination and abuse within Canada's judicial system. And all the ongoing police violence. They're calling for immediate action @ TStar

Dene Chief Allan Adam provides a case in point. The long time activist and champion for indigenous rights was badly beaten by RCMP over an expired licence plate. Folks might've once shrugged off here, but it's very serious, world news @ NYT

Colour Blind: Despite widespread civil unrest, Canada's 14 provincial and territorial First Ministers can't agree to condemn systemic racism in Canada. Why? They don't all believe it exists. Oh, and by the way, get this -they're all white too. Hmmm @ CBC



Justa Bootlicker: Canada drops to 12th place in the world Corruption Perception Index due to Trudeau's efforts to protect his corporate masters during the SNC Lavalin scandal. But let's face it. The Conservatives and NDP can whine and complain all they want. Given half a chance, they would've done so too. BTW, does Canada's Attorney General still sit in cabinet, at the PM's pleasure? Thought so. Where's the outrage over that? @ CoP

Canuck Right Wing Watch: The "Free North Patriots" are a self professed "civil liberty" group supposedly representing Canada's "business owners". They're behind the strange anti-lockdown protests that have been springing up across Canada during the Covid-19 pandemic. These "patriots" are also adamantly against vaccines, and 5G. Somehow, they're also connected with Canada's "Yellow Vests" wing-nuts and have mysterious foreign ties. Be on the watch @ PP

Police Reform: Ontario Premier Doug Ford cut back on the province's new police oversight reforms upon taking office. Was completely oblivious to the concerns of Ontario's BLM and POC. Now what's he going to do, as protests against police violence spread across the province?!? Our police remain largely unaccountable for their actions, very much above the law. It's hardly the bulwark of a healthy, functioning democracy. More @ CBC @ TVO  



Ford's Health Experts: Premier Doug Ford claims that his "health experts" have been determining Ontario's way forward during the Covid-19 pandemic. It's some comfort that so far he hasn't just left it up to his big biz and politico buddies instead. Still, Ford seems very eager now to reopen our economy asap, like most everyone else. Without proper concern for how that could destroy all our hard work and commitment, in bending the curve. Moreover, Ford won't tell us who these health experts really are. Maybe they're just the government bureaucrats he's appointed to talk to them? And apparently tell us what they say?!? Why the lack of transparency?!? @ CBC

Ford's Health Cuts: It's no secret! The Ford government contributed to the Covid-19 deaths through it's drastic budget and staffing cuts to Public Health Ontario, before the pandemic. Doug the Thug might seem like an all caring kinda guy now, but he'll need to be asked some tough questions after this is over @ NP

Nurses Pay Cut: Ontario's registered nurses consider Ford's recent 1% pay raise a "slap in the face". It's actually a pay cut; is less than the inflation rate. Ford often praised our nurses during the pandemic, but now it seems like they're heroes no more @ CBC



Front Line Retail Workers: Ford praised them as our heroes during the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic too. But that doesn't go very far in paying the bills. Once again, most of them, are back to only earning the minimum wage. Loblaws, Metro, Walmart and Solbeys have all recently cut their pandemic raise. While our Dougie also recently tried to cut their paid statuary holidays, as a part of his business recover plan. He only backed off, under union pressure. Ummmm ... So Douglas -how about restoring their friggin' sick days too?!? Yeah, the one's you cut upon taking office??? More @ City

Covid Worker Safety: The OFL [Ontario Federation of Labour] warns that the toadie Ford Government "Work Refusal Advisory Committee" put workers lives at risk during the pandemic. That badly needs to change, as a part of the new normal OFL

Covid Pay Cuts: Like working at home? Want to keep it that way? Well, better plan for a salary cut, in the daze ahead. It'll reflect your new working conditions, as business adjusts to the new normal Globe

Modernize Ontario Act: Condo owners beware -Ford's changes to the Ontario's Condo Act during the pandemic now gives property management and condo boards lotsa new rights and privileges. But is that's what best for us? @  ON.CA

IN THE NEWS



Trumped? US President Donald Trump is doubling down on his trademark divide and conquer strategies, and blatant lies. That's despite the worsening health crisis and widespread, growing civil unrest. His polling numbers are falling and it's the summer before the fall election. Is it finally game over for the Donald? @ CNN

GOP Law + Order: Trump continues to champion conservative law and order politics. "When the looting starts the shooting starts ..." pretty much summarizes his one size fits all focus on strong arm policing solutions to America's problems. But now there's been a massive sea change in public opinion. Americans' are seriously questioning the wisdom of this approach, as the widespread recent protests and civil unrest continue to rock the nation unabated. @ Pol

Agents of Repression: The social and political role of the police unions is often part and parcel of the repressive state apparatus. Far too often they're simply bullies, protecting offending officers from being held accountable accountable, for killing and brutalizing the very citizens they are suppose to serve and protect. Post George Floyd, that's now finally getting a hard, critical second look. SJ @ Youtube



Blame Antifa: Ooooh look! A Boogey-man! It's so typical Trump! Blame a fantasy band of roving shady, leftist Antifa bad boys, for any legitimate dissent against the status quo. With plenty of fake news stories and unfounded rumours, of professional anarchists. Violent mobs. Looters. Criminals and rioters. Hey! This BS resonates in small town America, providing a handy excuse to avoid dealing with the real underlying problems behind the protests in any meaningful way @ Buzz

Racism and Police Violence are a crisis of capitalism. Sure, they're human right violations, based upon one's skin colour and ethnicity. But they also expose the structural racism and economic inequality inherent in America's capitalist system of government. The Covid-19 pandemic merely exacerbated the existing social inequalities, revealing how unprotected the poor and it's racial minorities really are. And so the UN Human Rights Committee meets. They're consider a response to the horrific crisis sweeping the US, the "land of the free". Er ... free from what?!? Bet their report doesn't go over well state side @ Granma



US Moral Equivalency? US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's response to international criticism over the police abuses? It smacks of hypocrisy. Also calls into question the bullying nature of US foreign policy in the developing world. Just more of the same old BS @ HRW 

Cuba Si!  Meanwhile, Cuba defends itself against Pompeo's criticism of it's medical brigades, helping other countries fight the Covid-19 pandemic @ TeleSur


Covid Surge: Back in the USA, the coronavirus rises dramatically, as many states re-open early, business as usual. A detailed statistical breakdown and analysis is @ NYT

Man Overboard: Trump's surrender to the coronavirus has turned the first wave of the pandemic into a virulent Tsunami sweeping across the US. Unfortunately for the shortsighted Donald, he can no longer wall it in by hook or by crook. Say it's just infecting the liberal, urban, blue states. Now Covid-19's spreading like wild fire throughout Trump's south and midwest swing states, threatening his base of support too @ WP  @ Eand @ Hill 

Right Wing Watch: Ironically, Fox News and the fake conservative media have actually intensified the Covid-19 pandemic across the US. MAGAT audience's are being entertained with conspiracy theories and discouraged from taking the necessary safety precautions. They aren't wearing masks or PPE's nor social distancing to protect themselves and others from the virus. How much longer can this madness go on? @ WP

Trump Subplot? Strangely, US President Donald Trump doesn't have a national strategy for dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. Arguably that might be seen as an advantage, to a facist strongman trying to hold onto his predominantly white base. Think about it: American blacks and latinos are getting infected the most. Hitten the hardest. Along with the poor, aged, frail, vulnerable, and marginalized too. It's the kind of apocalypse Trump might think can help him win the fall US election. Of course it's now also infecting his vulnerable, white, aging MAGAT voters too. Nor is it much of a crowd pleaser for anyone else. But here's how the thinking goes @ Eand



Cuba's Response: The socialist state has been very been very responsible throughout the pandemic, going into full lockdown. The've also put tourism on hold. Even though that's their main source of income, what with the crippling US sanctions. Covid-19 continues to motivate the average Cuban to work together rather than fight among themselves. Cuba argues that the pandemic illustrates the failure of neoliberalism. Also the importance of international cooperation and solidarity. And the US considers Cuba the bad guys?!? More on the crisis in Cuba and the safety protocols put in place @ Granma @ Granma @ Granma @ Granma

US Sanctions: Cuba denounces recent US criticism and US efforts to tighten it's shameful and criminal economic sanctions against the Cuban people during the coronavirus pandemic. It also notes that health is a basic human right, seemingly another rogue concept for Trump, Pompeo and the GOP @ Granma More on Twitter @ #UnblockCuba


Santiago de Cuba 2020: Read my three part travel blog and expose @@@

COVID BEAT



Mapping The Virus: The Covid-19 pandemic continues to spread around the world at an alarming rate! A detailed breakdown of the stats is @ NYT

Covid-19: History Repeats: Beware! Covid is a lot like the so called "Spanish Flu" of 1918-19. During that pandemic, up to a third of the population in many countries got sick. And tens if not hundreds of millions died, in three waves.

Like Covid-19, the first wave was widespread but mild. Thinking the worst over, life largely returned to normal. While the virus "seeded", spread asymptomatically and mutated. Two much more deadly waves of the virus soon followed.

Think of it like this -First, comes the sucker punch. We dodge it. Grow cocky. Let down our guard. Next come the two much deadly second and third waves; like right-left knock out punches. 

Maybe? Maybe not? Better to be safe than sorry! Check out these links for a good overview of the many shocking similarities CBC @ History @ CDC @ NCBI @ GR

The New Normal? We've largely dodged the first wave of Covid-19. But still know very little about the virus. Like how do we catch it? Only now, is a true consensus beginning to emerge @ WSJ

Morbidity + Mortality 101: The coronavirus is always busy interacting with our other underlying health conditions, as it spreads That could kill lots more of us, according to our sex, age and race. Especially if you suffer from pre-existing cardiovascular problems, diabetes or chronic lung diseaseMMWR

Proper Social Distancing: The messaging sometimes differs; should we keep one or two metres apart? As the economy re-opens? As we head back out in public? To school and work? Be forewarned! It's economic pressures rather than safety concerns that are now often deciding the distancing debate @ FT

Ka-Poop: Flush the toilet -it creates a mushroom cloud of aerosol spray. Spreading the Covid-19 virus onto all the washroom surfaces. Until they're thoroughly disinfected and cleaned. Sadly, public hygiene is dicey at the best times. So just how safe is a public lavatory, as we venture outside the home, in the age of Covid-19? @ NYT

Protest Now? Today's rallies, protests, and demonstrations against racism and police violence, are very timely and important. But if you're especially susceptible to the coronavirus, for age or health reasons and so on, find another way to actively support the cause! Also, if you are protesting, get tested and social distance afterwards at home, to help keep your family and significant others safe @ NPR

Back 2 The Beach: Wanna snack? Looking for the washroom? Lotsa bathers? Here are some Covid-19 safety tips to keep in mind @ Huff

EDUCATION BEAT



MOE: The Ontario Minister of Education: Minister Stephen Lecce has released a vague, half baked reopening plan for the province's schools come this fall. It lists three options: a normal and a modified, and an at home learning routine. No, Ontario's teacher federations and other important frontline education groups weren't properly consulted despite their wealth of knowledge and expertise. No, the MOE didn't provide sufficient notice for September. Nor the funding, space, training or support needed to ensure a safe school re-opening either. The "plan" and the critiques are @ Opo @ CBC @ CP24 @ TStar

People for Education's Annie Kidder has argued all along that the Ford government absolutely must include Ontario's teachers and educators to develop a safe and realistic school reopening plan, but to no avail. DuhTStar @ P4E

Sick Kids Hospital: On the other hand, Sick Kids did help the MOE to help develop their plan. Here's their flawed, if not well intentioned response. Also a critique of it's unfortunate lack of proper, well informed, safety protocols, a "sad example of bad pandemic advice" @ SK @ NP @ CBC @ CP

ECE Reopening Childcare Plan: But the Early Childcare Educator's carefully considered submission was ignored by the Ontario MOE @ CCO

MIA: So who else is missing in action. See below:

ETFO's Plan to Reopen Schools: Here's the elementary teacher's submission to the Ontario MOE [Ministry of Education]  @ ETFO

OECTA's Plan to Reopen Schools: Ditto the Ontario English Catholic TeachersOECTA

OSSTF's Safe Return For All: Ditto the Ontario Secondary School TeachersOSSTF

Right Wing Watch: Last February's "Working Parents Vaughan" fake news ads have been found guilty of violating the Ontario Elections Act. Turns out Conservative millionaire Michael Degasperis was the Neo conster ... ahem ... mastermind behind all this despicable bullshit. He has close ties to MOE Stephen Lecce. Helped drum up right wing hysteria against the province's teachers for the Ford government during the rotating strikes. Sure Degasperis got caught red handed. Now gets a little slap on the wrist. While the injustice remains, a fait accompli. Sadly, we'll keep seeing this again and again and again, like always, for as long as the Ford Conservatives remain in power. Then again, the Liberal and NDP weren't above a little ol' teacher bashing when in government too. And so it goes and on and on and on @ PP @ PP @ PP

Building Student Understanding: An all white class in Memphis Tennessee is working together with an all back class in NJ to bridge America's racial and cultural divide. Yup! Teach 'em young. Education is our greatest tool to try change the world for the better, if not now, then in the years' aheadEdu



Mt. Rushmore: Here's why Trump's speech at Mt. Rushmore is so objectionable, especially for the Lakota Tribe @ ST

Tulsa Rally: Why was the location of Trump's first 2020 election rally so awfully shocking and offensive for American blacks? Consider the "Massacre of Black Wall Street" @ Atlantic And "The Tulsa Race Massacre" @ PBS


KULTURE KULT INK



Canada Vs The US: Who's the best, eh?!? @ NY

On White Priviledge: As a white male myself, I think it's really sad. So many of us are afraid of letting go of our sense of privilege. Of creating a level playing field where we too must compete. Maybe some of us are worried that we're somehow sub par ? If not, why do we then need an unfair advantage, to compete with everyone else?!? Really, it's quite sad and pathetic. More on white privilege and it's many nuances @ TT

Rotiskenrakehete: The traditional role and responsibility of an indigenous warrior or "rotiskenrakehete" is to protect their community. It's their duty, not a question of choice. That's part and parcel of belonging to a society that practices and promotes harmony and balance in nature. They certainly aren't terrorists, thugs or a gang, as the mainstream media suggests. So whom exactly are the RCMP protecting? As they enforce GasLink oil pipeline injunctions on unceded Wet'suwet'en land? And why are Wet'suwet'en fighting back so hard? @ RPM @ RPM

Cuba Vacations: International tourists will be welcome back at Cuba's resorts, but only in safe, select area's where we won't pose or be at risk of infection. That comes at stage 3 of their recovery plan. Think Cayo Coco rather than Habana. More @ TL




COMMENTS

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!
See below ...

Communist Girls Are More Fun #1

Communist Girls Are More Fun #1

Communist Grrrls are More Fun #2

Communist Grrrls are More Fun #2

Communist Grrrls Are More Fun #3

Communist Grrrls Are More Fun #3

Communist Girls Are More Fun #4

Communist Girls Are More Fun #4

Art at the Paris Louvre: What does it mean?!?

Art at the Paris Louvre: What does it mean?!?
A careful analytical study!

Help! I Have No Arms!

Help! I Have No Arms!
Please scratch my back.

I can't find my underwear!.

I can't find my underwear!.
Have you seen them!

Weee! I can fly!

Weee! I can fly!
Look! I can crawl thru walls!

I have a headache!

I have a headache!
And a broken nose.

I have a square hole in my bum!

I have a square hole in my bum!

Here try this, it's very good!

Here try this, it's very good!
No. You have a bird face.

I have an ugly baby!

I have an ugly baby!
No I'm not!

Let's save all our money + buy pants!

Let's save all our money + buy pants!
OK but I need a new hand too!

Oh no! I got something in my eye!

Oh no! I got something in my eye!

You don't look well.

You don't look well.
No. My head hurts +I have a sore chest.

Would you like a bun?

Would you like a bun?

Chichen-Itza: Lost Maya City of Ruins!

Chichen-Itza: Lost Maya City of Ruins!
The Temple of Kukulkan!

Gotta love it!

Gotta love it!
Truly amazing!

Under Reconstruction!

Under Reconstruction!

Temples + Snakes!

Temples + Snakes!

The Snake!

The Snake!
It runs the length of the ball field!