centre of the universe: Conscientious Objection shouldn’t mean dereliction of duty

Canada passed a law in June 2016 to make legal and to offer protection to the providers of medically assisted dying. Let’s just pretend for a moment that “Medically Assisted Dying” isn’t one of the lamest, most watered-down name for the practice of euthanasia. Predictably, there were a number of objectors to this bill, many ...

centre of the universe: Alouette

Way back in the nineteen somethings, Canada was going through the sort of identity crisis we all go through when we’re about fifteen. Québec was all stomping around the place, slamming doors and cupboards and shouting “JE PARS” everytime someone looked at it. “Hey, Québec,” we’d say, “I like your cheese. You have lovely cheese.”…

centre of the universe: centre of the universe 2017-09-14 19:19:06

The following article is mean. It’s also plaigiarised. Responding to Catholicism With Logic and Charity In this article I will address the growing issue of Catholicism, give three examples of this crisis, and then conclude by suggesting three approaches to take when addressing proponents of this view. Let me begin by summing it up in…

Things Are Good: American Startup Creates Job Board for People with Criminal Records

Americans like to think of themselves living in the land of the free, ironically the country has the highest incarceration rate on the planet (and the greatest number of people behind bars). The laws in the USA are quite strict with zero tolerance and minimum jail time for offenders, this leads to a lot of ...

Things Are Good: Even Massive Multinationals Support Net Neutrality

Net neutrality is what allows the internet to be what it is, and without it the internet would be pretty much useless. The Trump administration is presently trying to eliminate net neutrality to protect the profits of a very small group of companies. It’s worth noting that the Obama administration also tried this but didn’t ...

Things Are Good: In Venezuela Bus TV is the Free Press

Venezuela has been witnessing a massive crackdown on journalism and public dissent under the current government (not that the previous government was much better). Mass protest happen daily throughout yet receive no media coverage due to government interference. This clampdown has led to frustration amongst media professionals who have decided to keep broadcasting, but on ...

Things Are Good: Using a Blockchain to Rebuild Trust in Governments

Cryptocurrencies have popularized the use of a digital concept called a blockchain. These blockchains can be used to track transactions and increase accountability of shared networks. If this sounds familiar, a few months ago we looked at how blockchain technology can be used to track physical items. Citizens around the world have been losing trust ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: An Adventure With My Mom and a Surprise Ending

Last week I decided to keep a promise I’d made to my Mom – I would take her out for dinner and spend a night away with her in a really nice hotel. My mother is like Thelma or Louise trapped in a frail, 95 year old body. Despite the extraordinary kindness of her assisted ...

Things Are Good: How Pressure from Pedestrians and Cyclists Make Better Cities

Depending on where you live you may think streets are for people or for cars. The correct answer is that streets are for moving people and not built for the need of inanimate objects. In an interesting series of videos the Toronto Star’s Christopher Hume examines the different urban design decisions between suburban and urban ...

Things Are Good: VLC Demonstrates the Awesomeness of the FOSS Movement

VLC plays anything you can throw at it as it’s an amazing piece of software. The application is focussed on doing one thing really well: playing media. It’s so good because of the philosophy behind it, known as Free and open-source software (FOSS). Meaning that anybody anywhere can contribute to the source code and make ...

Joe Fantauzzi: Desmond Cole, the Toronto Star and Another Existential Crisis for Professional Journalism

DISCLOSURE: I worked as a mainstream news reporter between 2003 and 2012. I see this as a two-fold issue; firstly, actions and secondly, words. I’ll consider both briefly and then elaborate on my concerns. Actions There is no point in rehashing here the now well-known details of what lead to Desmond Cole’s departure from the Toronto ...

Things Are Good: Be Safe Online

The American government recently repealed laws set to protect your privacy online, clearly the government doesn’t care about private communication. This impacts people around the world because a lot of internet traffic travels through the states via various online services. Safe and secure conversations are needed to keep a democracy running and we all deserve ...

centre of the universe: Fuck Libraries

The Saskatchewan government, in its 2017/18 budget, has slashed library budgets around the province. Its done all kinds of other things too like force civil servants to take a 3.5% cut in pay, shut down the only highway bus transportation service in the province, increase the provincial sales tax, and basically pissed off pretty much…

Things Are Good: Get Rewarded for Supporting Civil Disobedience

If your idea to change the world is creative enough then you could get $250,000 from LinkedIn cofounder Reid Hoffman. Technically, it’ll be from MIT Media Lab with money from Hoffman. The Lab and Hoffman teamed up to ensure that creative civil resistance in the USA doesn’t die under the Trump presidency. With the increased ...

Things Are Good: This River is a Person in New Zealand Law

The Whanganui River its the first river to have the same legal stats as a person. The New Zealand federal government recently passed a bill granting the river legal personhood. This means that the river is afforded all the rights as a person under New Zealand law. The river’s rights to clean air, legal representation, ...

Things Are Good: Use Technology to Mobilize Your Community

The current federal leadership in the USA has many people concerned about their rights and freedoms. If you’re one of those people you can use these technological tools to help you stand up and fight back. Newsweek, rather surprisingly, compiled a list of tech tools that can be used to mobilize communities or be used ...

Things Are Good: How a Better World Can Come from Supply Chain Management

The Canadian organization Shareholder Association for Research & Education (SHARE) just released a report on how supply chain management can help promote and enforce human rights. Some countries legally require companies to report the status of human rights and any liabilities that may stem from neglect or worse. Canada, however, does not. SHARE has looked ...

Things Are Good: The Quick and Powerful Response by the ACLU

Image via Reddit. Over the weekend President Trump enacted what has come to be known as the Muslim Ban. Immediately protestors took to their nearby airports in act of solidarity with the people affected by Trump’s outrageous actions against migration. The protests are continuing today at American consulates and embassies around the world. This is ...

Things Are Good: What It’s Like to Use the Internet in Cuba

The internet is a great resource for connecting people to people and connecting people to services and new ideas. Cuba, like other developing nations, has had a hard time connecting to the internet because of the sheer cost (laying cables underwater isn’t cheap!); and for Cuba the costs are higher since they can’t connect to ...

Things Are Good: Amnesty International’s Guide to Safe Messaging

Thanks to the bravery of whistleblowers we know that the Five Eyes are monitoring all internet chatter regardless of who’s talking. This is a big concern for people who care about freedom and rights to have personal communication. As a result, Amnesty International put together a review of messaging apps so you can make an ...

Things Are Good: Standing Rock Sioux Achieve a Victory

This is proof that direct protest action works. The US Army Corps of Engineers has decided to not grant permission to allow the Dakota Access pipeline to be built as planned. The pipeline was meant to go through burial lands of the Standing Rock Sioux which is offensive in itself, but there’s more to it. ...

Joe Fantauzzi: THE PROBLEMS OF CARDING: Excising the Discriminatory Police Street Check Process

Over at Academia.edu, I have posted an updated public policy analysis of the police practice of carding, also known as “street checks” that I did as part of my Master’s course load. The full paper can be found HERE. But here is the Executive Summary: This policy analysis paper examines three options to deal with the discriminatory ...

Things Are Good: We Need the Humanities More Than Ever

Over the last decade or so there has been a big push in North America to get students in to STEM education. Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) are important to study, but they need to be studied alongside the humanities. The push for STEM is a result of the success of the tech sector ...

Joe Fantauzzi: Columbus is no hero of mine

Italian-North Americans — especially those of us with roots in the Mezzogiorno (and I include the Ciociaria and Abbruzzo here) — don’t need a Genoese genocidal rapist as our hero. It’s time to eliminate Columbus Day. It’s time for #IndigenousPeoplesDay   Some good reading and watching: ‘All Indians Are Dead?’ At Least That’s What Most Schools Teach ...

Things Are Good: Complaints About Police Drop 93% Thanks to Body Cameras

Policing has become a hot issue in recent years thanks to the efforts of groups like Black Lives Matter bringing discriminatory actions by the police to light. In many jurisdictions police forces are already using (or considering) body cameras that record what officers are seeing and doing. It turns out that using them can decrease ...