I’m not sure why people are affected in any way by this coming decision. Anyway…
Friends of the commonwealth… the big day is finally upon us. It’s a day when we can all gather around and plant the seeds of excitement when we see for ourselves the bold soul that will lead us all into the sunshine and glory of our greatest days.
The Stampede Parade Marshall will be announced today at A.E. Cross and while we don’t know who it will be, we have heard some hints. It’ll be a Canadian icon and they’re doing it at a school named for one of the Big Four business icons… place your bets…
but here’s the thing…
It seems that the Stampede Board can’t escape controversy when they pick the parade marshal. Remember last year how our city got its collective panties in a bunch when we heard that our parade marshals would be two hicks from Oklahoma? That’s a bit harsh… but that’s how we felt about Jet and Cord McCoy, the famous cowboys from Amazing Race.
Remember the year before when Mike Holmes was named parade marshal? Canada’s most famous construction contractor and a brilliant tie-in with the World Skills competition wasn’t good enough for a city who thought that a car dealership spokesman who called chuckwagon races for ten days a year was the only correct choice.
Try to remember that in both cases, the choice the Stampede board made was fitting and sage.
Let’s not forget to be golden Calgarians today when the parade marshal announcement makes us scratch out heads. Let’s not pounce immediately on the stupid reasons why we think the choice is a bad one. Instead, let’s trust that the very capable Stampede board knows what they’re doing and welcome the new ambassador of the Calgary Stampede.
This is a letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, though I’m certain he won’t read it. Nonetheless, I feel I could add several hundred thousand signatures to the bottom of it.
On the topic of usage based billing…
Canadians are well aware that we pay among the highest internet service fees in the developed world. Now, we’re learning that the companies who offer these fees are contemplating a user based billing scheme that will drive the price of internet service up.
It bewilders us to know that you, Prime Minister, are the steward of the economy, intent on protecting corporations from tax hikes so they can continue to employ Canadians at the rate they do now. Yet when those same companies engage in predatory pricing practices, you offer no protection for those same Canadians you claim you seek to protect.
You are a master economist whose record shows that you don’t favour government intervention in the markets. We remember the look of loathing on your face when you purchased a share of an American car company on your birthday with Canadian money. Your apprehension to create a stimulus package during the recession was noted. Yet, you’ve done nothing to indicate a willingness to open the telecommunications industry to be more competitive. This is what we want.
The oligopoly of major Canadian ISPs and wireless providers has Canadians by the short ones. Where shall we turn when the major net providers begin to throttle or charge us per byte?
Canadians are jealous of American and British models because we know they are possible here and we deserve them.
Prime Minister Harper… please deregulate this industry to the point that Canadians have a choice between these bitter-pill business practices and a competitor willing to offer humane, reasonable rates.
In short, 18 month cell phone contracts are long enough. All TV channels should be available a la carte. Internet should be significantly cheaper. A Canadian telecom utility bill should be closer to $50 than it is to $200. This would mark a real savings to Canadians.
The future is online. Move to give us unbridled access to it. Open up the marketplace.
I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive Steve_Earle
I’ll never get out of this world alive, like the Hank Williams song, and like Hank, Steve has had his fair share of both success and trouble. Between bumps and beers Steve Earle has still found time over the last few decades to put out 14 albums all of which have been awesome. Pretty sure that Steve is clean now. This is not a tribute to Hank, its all original music except for one song. If you dig this Steve Earle album give his son’s music a try too Justin_Townes_Earle
Start packing, Dogs.
Last night, Detroit took it upon themselves to end one of the most ridiculous paradoxes in North American sports; ice hockey in the desert. The Wings won, they swept the Coyotes and now the spotlight is on Gary Bettman and the many deals that, to this point, have been all but fictitious.
So here we go… pull the rope and start the yapping about the new Winnipeg Jets… or Moose… or whatever they’ll be called. By the way, it’s a mistake to call them anything but the Jets. Not a big one though. It’d be on par with CBC losing the Hockey Night theme.
But here’s the thing…
You ever wonder why Bettman was clinging so tenaciously to the idea of a hockey team in Phoenix? Phoenix is the 6th most populous city in the USA. As far as media markets go, it is #15. That’s a lot of money on the table… admittedly, it’s been tough for the Coyotes to get its share.
Winnipeg. 750,000 people. You think they’ll be able to keep the lights on in an arena indefinitely?
Hockey is an emotional issue for Canadians. If you replace emotion with reason, you might find that Winnipeg is unfit to take a team. I mean, gimme a break, what Canadian city wouldn’t campaign for an NHL club when asked to.
The right thing to do? Contract the league. The idea of growing the game has failed. Hockey, it turns out, is too confusing for some and too bizarre for others. Selling ice-based sports to Florida and Arizona for example. Even in places where it’s understood, it’s underappreciated.
Remember the last lockout? The point was to reign in salaries and put the team owners in a better position to profit. Today, we have teams that have to win the cup if they want to have any hope of pulling out a profit. Ottawa, for example.
Don’t kid yourself. The Winnipeg team will not be posting rosy financials for years to come.