Suprising Exactly No One

Guess what the newly released Census data shows? U.S. income inequality at its highest level since the Census Bureau began tracking household income in 1967. The U.S. also has the greatest disparity among Western industrialized nations. There’s more at the article, like this: The top-earning 20 percent of Americans — those making more than $100,000 each year — received 49.4… Read more →


Did you know that Portugal basically decriminalized all drugs in 2001? Take a guess what the results have been over the intervening decade. If you guessed that the results would be a drop in drug use, a drop in HIV cases arising from drug use, and a big jump in people in treatment programs, you’d be right. (I wish there was more in the article about the presence or absence of effects on criminal cash flow arising from the presumable price drop in a decriminalized environment.)

What, You Don’t Trust “Policing Services” Implicitly?

Canadians who are interested in the conditions under which it’s legal for private information and documents to be shared might want to take a good long look at Bill C-29. I’ll quote a bit from the legislative summary below, but in essence one of the things this bill says is that any documents/information the police (or anything that meets the… Read more →

Must Also Be Seen To Be Done

I had thought that three of the things that were important ideas in Canadian jurisprudence were: 1) That citizens had a right to free speech, 2) that the government in all its forms has a prescribed amount of power, with well delineated limits on where that power stops, and 3) that it was very important for the justice system to… Read more →


Just a quick recommendation for anyone who likes “traditional” music–while I was at the Shelter Valley Folk Festival this year (I got to see The Sojourners perform live!) I was introduced to the singing of Matthew Byrne. Byrne was performing with his group The Dardanelles, but had a couple of chances to show off his solo singing, and it was hella impressive. (I also loved bandmate Tom Power‘s introduction for Byrne, where he explained that in Newfoundland “best singer in the town” is a position much more important than mere temporal authority, like mayors or members of the legislature.) Check out some streaming tunes on Byrnes’ site, and buy some tunes if you like them as much as I did.

The Artist’s Responsibility?

So, I took a quarter off from blogging. Yeah, that happened. Now back to it. To start back up, let’s look at something in the vein of pop philosophy–that way I can ease myself back into blogging with something that’s squarely in my wheelhouse. So, last night an artist posed this question “If you have the ability to depict humanity… Read more →


Something seems to be happening here, after a long pause.

Because you can

I was just having a conversation on Friday with someone about a bunch of Google employees who had ordered up a ridiculous amount of silly putty so they could do an experiment with dropping it from a great height. As someone educated in a faculty of engineering, this made tremendous sense to me: I’ve done my own experiments with various… Read more →

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada
This work by Chris McLaren is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada.