Monday, August 29, 2011

 

@ SUMMER'S END

The end of August and the post Labour Day turnaround surely spell the end of summer. Perhaps this is a good time (as good as any) to clear-out the backlog from my blotter in anticipation of a new start to the fall season of political and economic folly...

TUG O' WAR: Although there is a $10-Million budget already earmarked by the National Capital Commission to upgrade that "handyman special" which now is Canada's Prime-Ministerial residence, the Harpers' aren't on-board with the renovations. Twenty-Four Sussex Drive is 143 years old,  the plumbing and wiring were last overhauled in 1950 when Louis St. Laurent lived in the place; there's no air conditioning and the house is said to be drafty and freezing cold in winter.  Maybe it's that Laureen thinks hangin' the family laundry on Margaret Trudeau's old clothes-line is just fine. Though you can bet Mila never did. But, times are tough...

WATERWORLD: If it's an issue of spending $10-Million of public funds during a time of austerity which bothers the Prime-Minister, a proposal from south of the border may have a solution to appeal both to the Harper's sense of thrift and the Prime Minister's philosophy of government. The founder of "Pay-Pal" is bankrolling the formation of a whole new floating ocean country in international waters on an oil rig (like) platform. Proponents of the plan, the San Francisco based "Seasteading Institute" say the idea is to start a country from scratch and promote policies of..."no welfare, looser building codes, no minimum wage, and few restrictions on weapons." The first full time settlement is to be ready in about 8 years. Which could be about the time the Harper's move-out of 24 Sussex.

THE CLOCK OF THE LONG NOW: More anecdotal evidence why most middle-class Americans endorse proposals to raise income taxes on the nation's filthy rich. Never mind the illusion of creating an artificial floating libertarian world (see above). Another tech titan, the founder of Amazon (Jeff Bezos) announced this summer that he will be building a clock designed to keep ticking for 10,000 years. It will apparently be built inside a mountain in west Texas. Hopefully construction can be completed by the time followers of the "Odd Day" movement are ready to celebrate 11/13/15 in slightly more than four years. Heck it was just this spring that evangelist Harold Camping professed himself "flabbergasted" that the world had failed to end on May 21st. He's now "two-for-two" having previously predicted the 'Rapture" in 1994. Once this "Clock of the Long Now" is in place, at least he won't be running-out of time soon.

LEGO IN DEEPEST SPACE: On October 15, in Winter Haven just south of Disney World, the latest entry into the crowded central Florida "theme park" business will open its gates and unveil the attractions. The multi-million dollar  "Legoland Florida" may already have a promotional "leg up" on the nearby Disney Mouse, Universal's Harry Potter and the various creatures at Seaworld and Bush Gardens.
Just when you may have thought that NASA's clock was ticking-down (Lest I digress: See "clocks" above!) with the demise of the Shuttle Program, the good folks at that other central Florida attraction, Cape Canaveral, loaded-up three Lego figures on board a space probe named Juno for its blast-off earlier this month on a five year mission to the planet Jupiter. When the spacecraft arrives in 2016, the Lego likeness of the Roman God, Jupiter; his sister Juno; and the Italian astronomer Galileo will be there to take in all the sights of our solar system's largest planet. In the last three weeks they've already become the farthest flying toys ever...and children of all ages may track their progress at LegoSpace.com. Guaranteed; a promo campaign sure to keep on giving.

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