Retired, sometime civil servant, sometime consultant, active intellectual, former lawyer, active property manager, and on rare occasions in the past a political activist. He has recovered from the experience.

Retired, sometime civil servant, sometime consultant, active intellectual, former lawyer, active property manager, and on rare occasions in the past a political activist. He has recovered from the experience.

Nomenklatura News

The Globe and Mail infallibly captures the movements of personnel inside the nomenklatura, this week recording  the change of leadership at the National Film Board from one left wing male French Canadian  to another female of the same nationality. Comrade Suzanne Guevremont has assumed control from Comrade Claude Joli-Coeur, the former commissioner (CEO) and chairperson.

The substance of the long article (most of page 6 below the fold) dwelt on the report that 72% of production between 2012 and 2021 was made by white film makers. This fact was obviously unacceptable to all concerned. While Comrade Joli-Coeur was congratulated on his achievement of gender parity goals (meaning 50-50 male/female ratios), indeed its overfulfilment of quota,  and aboriginal goals (15% of NFB production), no goals had yet been set for racialized Canadians. This fact will be addressed by the income Commissioner.

In its corporate plan for 2020 the NFB pledged to make racial diversity one of its top priorities.

Film makers working for the NFB are reported to be in vigorous debates about “priorities and procedures”.

All the news that suits the nomenklatura – that’s our Globe.

 

Suzanne Guevremont, the new NFB Commissioner and Chairperson

Things I believe and do not believe

To be accurate, “belief” is distinguished from knowledge. What I know for sure does not  need to be believed, because in that case belief is superfluous. I see belief and knowledge to be incompatible states of mind. When the pen is dropped from the hand in normal gravity, I know it falls towards the centre of the earth. I might believe it as well but that belief is superfluous.

 

I believe:

  • There is spiritual wickedness in high places.
  • Recent global warming is real and not significant in the long record of climate change on earth, though we should keep an eye on it.
  • There exists an immaterial force for goodness that is called God and by many other names. It is benign and intelligent, and occasionally directs those open to his insights and revelations to better outcomes.
  • We have received revelations.
  • I do not have an accurate, comprehensive, and correct picture of all that is going on. No one else does either.
  • Tolerance is required because of the preceding point.
  • Measures to control COVID were a foretaste of future totalitarian social controls that will be needed for a meatless future where we shiver in the cold, cold designed by globalists to immiserate us. See first bullet.
  • Gain of function research associated with COVID was paid for by American sources.

I do not believe:

  • That the governments and ruling classes of this world give a damn for the fate of the average person.
  • I do not believe in the benign intentions of those forces associated with the World Economic Forum, the Davos crowd, or the global warming climate emergency.
  • That the government of Canada is in good hands. (The first three bullets here are the same thing said in different ways).
  • That all people are equal in many significant senses of the word equal. Inevitably this includes peoples as well as people.
  • That though evolution is true, that natural selection or sexual selection as Darwin has explained them are sufficient explanations. Good try though!
  • That materialism is a sufficient explanation. The world is far more and greater than matter and its motions.
  • COVID was not a natural event but was an engineered plague that was either deliberately or accidentally released from the Wuhan Institute for Virology.

 

Most of what I blog is a commentary on the above. And with that, I will call it a day.

Peace.

 

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Elon and Twitter

The Duke of Steiermark was laughing over WhatsApp. “I cant believe it. Twitter is three things: a website, an interface for IOS and an interface for Apple. That’s it. And this took 7,500 people? It could be overmanned at 500. Elon told them they all had to work and they quit. He will have the place running like a well oiled sewing machine in a few months”.

In the meantime, the Babylon Bee outdoes itself.

Posting will resume

Posting will resume more regularly as I recover from a parasitic infection. It was serious, and took 11 days in hospital. Fortunately medicine is working as it ought, for which I am grateful.

Posting has also been stymied by the impossibility of believing that the situation could be worse. Things seem beyond caricature. But Elon gives me some hope.

 

Totalitarian States: it comes from the bottom as well as the top

Vladimir Voinovich said this in the 1980s. So does my colleague Rebel Yell. People imagine that totalitarian ideology is imposed from the top. Yes, but not exclusively. It also pervades from below and around. The lie is the basis of totalitarianism. So said Solzhenitsyn. You can think of several without difficulty. Sex is a social construct. Gender trumps sex. Race is simultaneously a social construct; white people invented race in the 18th century. Black lives actually matter – more than any other race. You belong to the sex you feel that you belong to. My pronouns are…

But cancel culture is a participatory sport; anyone can join in. In fact mass participation in the denunciations of wrongthink are mandatory. It is the envious neighbour who enforces the lie far more effectively than the policeman.

Jordan Peterson touched upon this aspect of totalitarianism in a recent interview with Piers Morgan. Listen to the discussion around the little Hitler in all of us. “The totalitarian state is the grip of the lie”

 

 

 

 

 

Freeman Dyson – how I miss him

“Now it has become a scandal that so many people are telling lies.”

“The models are being  contradicted by observations”.

“A computer model is essentially just fluid dynamics.”

Interviewer “Are you saying the whole history of global warming is based on fluid models, computer models and less on  observations? FD “Yes that is true”.

And more. The warmists “live by scaring the public.” (at 7:37)

Interviewer; “Are we saving the world or missing the point?” FD “I would say missing the point”. (at 9:00}

 

 

If you imagine a world in which nothing is real

If you imagine a world in which nothing is real, then you can imagine that nothing matters except racial, sexual and other quotas. Listen to Brett Weinstein at 1:14:30.

 

 

Bridges and planes will have to fall out of the sky before this problem is fixed. My observation from life is that the Left are all nominalists: they think that relabelling things changes their nature. The world is not actually real to these people. Like Wile E. Coyote,  you only fall when you recognize that you are in mid-air and that the force of gravity actually operates. Not so. They believe but do not actually say that,  if I can control all the means of communication, and prevent anything contrary from being said, I can prevent the law of gravity from working. It is that absurd.

Asabiya

Peter Turchin reintroduced me to the concept of asabiya in his War and Peace and War. 

Asabiya is a term borrowed from the Arabic philosopher of history Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406). Asabiya is the power of a society to accomplish things collectively, such as build an empire, a cathedral or a bridge, or fight a war. If you want to experience the power of asabiya, just consider how the entire British nation and its institutions buried their monarch. mourned her loss, televized the funerals, held complex ceremonies in centuries-old churches, organized 4000 soldiers, sailors and airmen and the the top ranks of the governing classes into parades, solemn processions, and ceremonies of the state church, as the people organized themselves into disciplined throngs of hundreds of thousands enduring hours of patient waiting in order to flow past the coffin of the dead Queen.

 

Says Turchin:

“Different groups have different degrees of cooperation among their members, and therefore different degrees of cohesiveness and solidarity…. Asabiya refers to the capacity of a social group for concerted collective action. Asabiya is a dynamic  quantity; it can increase or decrease with time. Like many theoretical constructs, such as force in Newtonian physics, the capacity for collective action cannot be observed directly, but can be measured from observable consequences”.

Great Britain manifestly has huge asabiya. So does the United States or Japan. Canada had asabiya. It demonstrated this in two world wars. Whether it still has asabiya is doubtful. It is rent by too many ethnic fissures, and the group most asabiya-endowed,  English Canada, is constantly denigrated and weakened by the governing Liberals as a matter of multicultural policy. “Diversity is our strength.”  The French Canadians fear English Canada’s asabiya and seek always to diminish it. For that matter, all of woke ideology is an attempt of the political left and their black allies to weaken the asabiya of the American people – “white fragility”, “systemic racism”. So is the attack on organic sexual divisions in the species a different form of attack on asabiya, as the idea of fixed sex roles, indeed fixed anything, goes against the idea of personal choice.

Life is not a matter of expressing our puny selves. It is a matter of belonging  to something great. Think if the political left as being in a permanent war against every other kind of asabiya but their own, when theirs is a weak and hate-filled search for enemies.

Asabiya is real, though not material.

 

 

 

 

 

On bill C-11, an Act to make the Internet into a form of cable broadcasting

Presentation of the Internet Society Canada Chapter to the Senate Committee on Transport and Communications on Bill C-11.

https://senparlvu.parl.gc.ca/Harmony/en/PowerBrowser/PowerBrowserV2?fk=584132&globalStreamId=3

 

  1. Good evening, Senators, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Timothy Denton and I am the chairman of the Internet Society Canada Chapter, or ISCC for short. I used to be a national commissioner of the CRTC and spent a good portion of my career in Internet governance institutions. The ISCC is a network of volunteers concerned with Internet policy. Many of us have served in senior positions in government. With me today is Len St. Aubin, a director of the Internet Society, and former Director General in the Department of Industry concerned with telecommunications, broadcasting and Internet policy.

 

What the ISCC believes

 

  1. We oppose C-11 because it embodies a fundamentally illiberal idea of communications; because it constitutes a vast overreach of governmental authority; and because it threatens the engine of innovation and economic growth which is the Internet.

 

 

  1. What we object to is the nearly boundless extension of governmental regulatory authority over communications. The bill excludes content that is predominantly alpha-numeric. Otherwise, and with only a few exceptions, it captures virtually all online audio and video.

What we recommend

 

  1. In the Annex to our formal Submission, we have proposed changes intended to limit the harm that C-11 poses. I would highlight in particular our recommendations to:

 

  1. One: Exclude from the Act, and therefore from any regulation or obligation to contribute to Canadian content production, any online service that earns less than $150 million in Canada annually.
  2. Two: Exclude from the Act all user generated content. This does not exclude social media platforms that stream user generated content and whose revenues exceed the $150 million cap, which would be subject to the Act.

 

  1. Three: Amend the policy objectives in Section 3 to ensure that CRTC regulation respects user choice, and recognizes that competition and market forces are contributing to achieving the objectives of the Act. Bill C-11 implicitly assumes that in a large measure the burden of Canadian program production is to be taken up by foreign, read American, streamers competing with Canadian broadcasters. Yet nowhere in this Bill do we read of competition and consumer choice.

 

 

  1. Four: Remove the amendments in clauses 7 and 8 of the bill so as to reinstate the current Act’s limitations, and Parliamentary oversight safeguards, on the authority of the Governor in Council to issue policy directions to the CRTC.

 

Bill C-11 is Fundamentally Flawed

 

  1. C-11 vastly exceeds the government’s stated objectives, and then leaves entirely to the CRTC the ability to determine its own mandate and the extent of its intervention in the online economy and in Canadians’ ability to access the content of our choice. In our view, C-11 invites fears of undue and harmful intervention.
  2. We believe that it is entirely possible to obtain a reasonable contribution to CanCon from global streamers without bill C-11’s massive intervention in the digital economy and in Canadians’ freedom to access online content of our choice.

 

 

Internet Streaming is Not Broadcasting

 

  1. Let us look at two basic features of broadcasting. The first, which C-11 retains, is that you broadcast by permission of the state. Broadcasting is a licensed activity, and the CRTC is the licencing authority. The second was a set of characteristics, business and technical, that limited who and what broadcasters were. Those characteristics were largely based on the scarcity of radio waves. C11 eliminates those characteristics nearly completely.

 

  1. The assumption that justified broadcasting regulation was that a very few speakers would have a captive audience of many tens of thousands of listeners, and later of viewers. The direction of traffic was one way. The audience had highly limited choices.
  2. In exchange for highly detailed regulation, traditional broadcasters have benefited from a host of measures that have created a walled-garden and sought to protect broadcasters from competition so that they could fulfil their CanCon and other obligations.

 

 

  1. C-11 declares all audio- and audio-visual content on the Internet to be broadcasting. It is a kind of reverse takeover of the Internet. The tiny Canadian broadcasting system can take on the world of the Internet by the mere trick of redefining “broadcasting”. C-11 is that bold, and that absurd.

 

 

Impact of C-11 on the Internet

 

  1. C-11 is about protecting the economic interests of an obsolescent niche of Canada’s music and video industries. It is not about bringing “broadcasting” regulation up to date. It is not even about “streaming”. It is about controlling content on the Internet, the persons who transmit content on the Internet, and what reaches the persons who access Internet content.
  2. Instead of introducing an actual Online Streaming Act – one that would have considered the unique nature of Internet-delivered content and the functioning of the markets for that content – C-11 tries to stuff the most vibrant and adaptive marriage of technology and culture within the stultifying embrace of the regulated broadcasting system. Bill C-11 seeks to prolong and reinforce the supply-side dynamics of broadcasting regulation. C-11 fails to affirm or even acknowledge the primacy of the audience and its right to choose the programming that suits it. C-11 embodies a set of bad ideas that ought to be rejected.

 

  1. In the time available we have had to concentrate our comments on the essentials. Our formal submission covers other issues that are also significant, which you will have received earlier. We thank you for your time and attention and look forward to your questions.