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Warren For President?

Today at the the annual Netroots Nation conference in Detroit, the nation’s largest gathering of liberal activists and organizers, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D) reportedly drew an applause that Hillary could only dream of. According to NYT and Politico reports, Warren was a rock-star while Hillary Clinton, the likely Democratic candidate for President, was absent. Warren’s populist talking points and her history of taking Wall Street to task (remember that Warren was an early advocate for the creation of a new Consumer Financial ...

Social Protest Literatue at Sparking The Left

Here at STL we are starting a new feature. In between our political-insight posts, I will start publishing excerpts or entire pieces of great literature that speak to crucial social and political issues which span the centuries. Though almost all in the Western tradition, the subject matters are transcendental. Now first to name my source, I am taking pieces from Upton Sinclair’s selected and edited collection “The Cry for Justice: An Anthology of the Great Social Protest Literature of All Time.” ...

Pulitzer-Winning Journalist Detained for Being Undocumented

I was first brought aware of Jose Antonio Vargas’ story last week in a piece he penned in Politico. He explained that he was in the Rio Grande Valley, in the city of McAllen, just north of the Mexican border. He was there to see first hand the tens of thousands of undocumented children, most of them from Central America, and observe how they were being treated. The trip was also used for a news conference appearance and vigil organized by United We Dream, ...

GOP Refuses Funding for Border Children Projects

A humanitarian crisis unseen before at our borders is becoming more and more urgent everyday at Rio Grande Valley, TX, and other Southwest locations. And yet the GOP is arguing over numbers. Yesterday President Obama requested an amount of $3.7 billion from Congress to help aid the 57,000 unaccompanied minors who illegally crossed the border from the Mexico side since October. They are mostly from violence-ridden Central American countries, like El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras (Honduras has the world’s highest murder ...

Problems galore for the new government headed by Mr. Narendra Modi in New Delhi – Imperative for the first time PM and his council of ministers in governance amidst multiple challenges

The phenomenal victory for Mr. Narendra Modi and his party (the BJP) in May 2014 general elections has not only drawn the adulation of people world over but also silenced all its die hard critics at home and abroad. It was so stupendous and stunning that even the American government and its top leaders across party lines acknowledged Mr. Modi as the emerging democratic leader of the world, setting aside their past antagonism as an error of judgment, not based ...

Embarrassing Weekend for NSA and CIA Good for Democracy

U.S. intelligence took a couple of pretty hard slaps in its face this past weekend and, when reading the articles about their wasteful and ridiculous actions, the slaps were clearly justified. First off, it was announced on Friday that Germany had arrested a man accused of spying for the United States and passing on the details of a German parliamentary committee’s investigation.  It’s pretty disgraceful that the U.S. is spending taxpayer dollars to buy spies so we can know about an ...

Double Standard For Murderers in Israel

According to the NYT and the AP, six young men have been arrested as suspects in last weeks beating and burning death of a 16 year old Palestinian boy named Mohammed Abu Khdeir. The autopsy revealed that the victim was still alive when the burning took place. The AP reports that, “Israeli authorities said the killers [of Khdeir] had acted out of ‘”nationalistic”‘ motives.” The “grisly” murder happened shortly after the burial of three kidnapped and murdered Israeli youths whose bodies were ...

Obama Needs to Sign Anti-Landmine Treaty

According to the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL) every day some 10 people around the world lose their life or limb to a landmine or another explosive remnant of war, and that means every year some 4,000 people get hurt or killed. America has an especial role in such injuries/deaths with the Vietnam rates of 1683 casualties (630 killed, 1051 injured [all time]) and Cambodia (one of the worst landmine casualty rates in the world) suffering 8227 casualties (630 ...

Has Putin Over Reached Once Too Often?

My, oh my.  We've watched this man make mince meat of Obama over the past several years.  Each time you could see the smirk broaden and the swagger get more pronounced. He and his allies - Iran, China, Syria and North Korea were truly enjoying themselves. But as happens with a lot of bullies, they get over confident and suddenly everything around them collapses. I'm wondering if this is the case with the downing of the Malaysian passenger jet. With the death ...

If Only It WERE The Heat!

What a day.  A passenger plane has been shot down over Ukraine uncomfortably close to the Russian border. Hamas reneged on the humanitarian cease fire so Israel launched their ground offensive. Children still pour across the border while Congress dithers. It's now being reported parents are giving them birth control in case they are raped during the journey. Along that line former member of Congress, Todd Aiken, who once talked about legitimate rape and the idea that women's bodies protected them from becoming ...

Hannity's Histrionics

For a person who doesn't have much faith in the intellect of pundits, I wonder why I watch them so often.  I wonder even more why the cable outlets and networks that employ them don't take more care in who they hire. Many of them get on crusades that bear no resemblance to reality.  Sean Hannity is one of the most prominent. The night before last  he was on his Bowe Bergdahl kick demanding to know why he was returned to ...

Do Actions Speak Louder Than Words?

If the President could run away from the border mess any faster I'm sure he would. It's being said it's because being seen in the setting of kids crammed into confined spaces with their scabies and lice would reflect badly on him.  It could even be his Katrina.  Well, maybe.  But who's fault is that? It goes to show his handlers aren't as smart as they think they are.  For one, drinking beer and shooting pool in Colorado, a state where ...

The Kids Always Went Home

Watching the immigration mess going full bore brought to mind a lot of things that have involved children from other nations.  The first thing that comes to mind is the Disney song It's a Small World After All that speaks to all we have in common. Hopes, dreams, all the warm fuzzy stuff. We've had exchange student programs where a student from another country lives with a local family to learn not only academics but what life in American and Americans ...

The Militia Is Coming, The Militia Is Coming!

That's all we need! News has it a call has gone out for militia, both unarmed and armed, to gather along the border to help private land owners protect their property in something called Operation Save Our Borders.  Terrific! Remember how well it went when militia turned out to help to  help Cliven Bundy in his fight over Federal grazing rights in Nevada?  It came within a hair's breadth of turning violent. I really feel for the border towns who are the ...

Will Cheney Help Or Hurt The Republicans In The Mid-Terms?

Will the re-emergence of Dick Cheney help or hurt the Republicans in the mid-terms?  There is so much going on about which voters are rightfully incensed my guess he will have little impact. I think it depends, however, on what happens in the middle east over the next couple of months. Those who believe it wouldn't be in the mess it is if it weren't for the Bush/Cheney policies and rush to war will be reminded of just that - the ...

So Sue Me

I often wonder these days how our country is going to survive the remainder of Obama's term.  Whether or not you agree with the Supreme Court decisions, they have been made never-the-less and the President has been slapped down on many occasions.  Sometimes unanimously. So why, I wonder, has the President decided to continue his mantra of it's my way or the highway.  He complains endlessly about the Republicans refusal to work with him.  House Speaker Boehner explains one reason is ...

Let us, then, fellow citizens, unite with one heart and one mind. Let us restore to social intercourse that harmony and affection without which liberty and even life itself are but dreary things. And let us reflect that having banished from our land that religious intolerance under which mankind so long bled, we have yet gained little if we counternance a political intolerance as despotic, as wicked, and capable of a bitter and bloody persecutions. Thomas Jefferson
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Frustrated Joe - Dwindling Empire

Now, if Ottawa really wants to get serious about this

So according to a story in the Globe and Mail, Ottawa is apparently going to start having telemarketers underwrite the cost of enforcing the national Do Not Call List. It seems that our  federal government plans to consult with the telemarketing industry in the coming months and implement a permanent funding mechanism to take effect April 1 of next year.

Junk Calls, an endless stream

Great concept, making the offender responsible for the cost of policing themselves. After all, why should the taxpayer continuously be expected to foot the bill to police industry. I understand the reasoning behind society having to cover the cost to police criminals, plain and simple they are criminals and its not like we can expect them to fund efforts to arrest, convict, and imprison themselves ( try collecting those dues…..). However, legitimate industry and business is another matter. When there is talk of impending government regulation for a specific sector of business we often hear from that particular group that they would much prefer self regulation over the government imposed version. Typically the argument will be made that the vast majority of the group is not the problem, that generally members respect and abide by the rules and common sense, and that excessive regulations will add to the costs of doing business. All good arguments, and for the most case very true. However, on occasion the government has no choice but to step in when an industry proves incapable of regulating itself  (yes, I said it, more government regulation), however why should the taxpayer be expected to shoulder the financial burden. After all, the industry itself is responsible for the problem and even if it were to effectively self regulate there would be an associated cost to its members.

So, maybe, just maybe this latest tact will help eliminate some of the dozens, if not hundreds of junk calls the average Canadian is subjected to.

Now while it is a good start, it simply does not go far enough. The current Do Not Call legislation effectively exempts a number of groups from the rules, charities, newspapers, pollsters and survey companies, and you guessed it, politicians and political parties. All of these groups will tell you that these calls are absolutely essential to fund raising, information gathering for their group or organization, or simply staying in business. Again probably true, however the same argument could be made for virtually any operation performing outgoing calls, yet none of them are blessed with exemption from the rules. It appears from the exempt list that the government covered itself (politicians and pollsters) and any allies that they felt might cause a backlash if not exempted (charities and newspapers), but does that really surprise anyone, its par for the course.

So if our government really wants to get serious about providing Canadians some relief from constant phone ring during their personal time at home, the regulations should blanket ALL call, no exceptions.

Frustrated Joe - Dwindling Empire

Author: Frustrated Joe - Dwindling Empire

Just your average born and raised Canadian who goes to work each day, pays his taxes, and hopes that there is something left for the next generation. This blog is just a snapshot of my thoughts and the issues that interest or infuriate me as I go through life.

1 comment to Now, if Ottawa really wants to get serious about this

  • It is, indeed a great concept–making the offender responsible for policing themselves. In point of fact, why should the Taxpayer even be concerned about policing Industry? Hasn’t Industry been “Policed” and taxed to the point of virtual extinction as it is? Shouldn’t all industry be free to run as rampant over the rights of the Public as it desires without the fear of any kind of government intervention?

    What ever happened to “Free Enterprise?” Al Capone knew a thing or two about “Free Enterprise” as did Boss Tweed and look at what happened to them. Tragic end to the concept of Free Enterprise for those two.

    Yes, I think we can reasonably assume that Big Business is honest enough and filled with enough integrity that there need be no fear that the Public Confidence would ever be violated. So I would propose that all government everywhere just forgo any intent to regulate anything and let it all run wild and free.

    As a Liberal, I support the concept of regulating business for the sake of protecting the consuming and the working public but I can also see the Conservative side of the argument too…Big Business…particularly “Corporate” Big Business is a legal “Person” and as such should never have the burden of the government sticking it’s nose in anywhere along the line.

    No–I agree with you! The Taxpayer should never be expected to shoulder the burden or any part of the burden. The Taxpayer has done his or her share once they have patronized the Business and the Business should be forever after free of any fear of any kind of government intervention into it’s affairs.

    Businesses, after all, are not in business to cater to the needs and whims of the Consuming Populace—Business is in business to make profits and to bolster the bottom line. There is no other justification for a Business other than making money and lots of it. Any benefit such as “Service” or “Convenience” that might accrue to customers as a result of a business is secondary in important and sometimes even inconsequential.

    Al Capone would probably have agreed with me on that point, don’t you expect?

    I think in the question of “Junk Calls,” someone with a little creative imagination might find a way to invent a “Filtering” device that is capable of detecting junk calls through recognition of “Keywords” perhaps or patterns of Keywords and simply avoid answering them much the same as a spam filter works on a computer.

    It doesn’t seem so far fetched to me. I think it is well within the realm of possibility.

    Anyway, there is always the other option of looking at the window of the “Incoming Call” function on most telephones and if the “Caller ID” shows something suspicious, the intended target of the junk call could simply refuse to pick up on the call. That seems simple enough.

    I think it would be heartless to put restrictions on calls from charities, don’t you really?

    Charities do so much good work in providing their administrators with outlandish lifestyles and I cannot see anyone of a Conservative bent ever wanting to restrict a hard working administrator from making their big salaries…wouldn’t that be restraint of commerce?

    All this is so academic and hardly bears discussion, now does it?

    There is something inherently wrong in the idea of putting restrictions on telemarketing calls. I mean, after all, there aren’t many Business Enterprises much larger than some telemarketing firms, is there?

    Think of the jobs they provide to the economy. Telemarketers provide thousand and perhaps millions of jobs to an economy. We certainly wouldn’t want to be sticks in the mud about jobs now would we?

    Maybe the whole problem is that there aren’t enough telemarketing operations headed up by Conservatives.

    Maybe we ought to insure that the telemarketing opportunities are fair and balanced and require legislation to insure that there are fully as many Liberal telemarketers in operation as there are Conservative ones.

    I think that would solve the whole problem.

    Anyway..what about the millions of elderly and lonely folks who rarely have anyone to talk to? Don’t the telemarketers provide a really needed service for those folks?

    If that is true, then who, with any conscience, could ever consider putting any kind of quash to these humanitarian efforts?

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