Sights in Hawai’i

Last month I went with Jeri to Hawaii for a long-planned, pre-booked vacation. I wouldn’t have intentionally gone to Trump America, it just worked out that way. I had planned on spending a day at Pearl Harbor, but did in a different way. The historic sites would have cost over $100 each, and I’ve grown a little tired of the American US Park-style presentation of US history. So we skipped it (but not entirely).

I started the warm day by walking to the airport after taking the bus. That was an adventure. We stopped in Edmonton, then we had supper in Vancouver airport Canucks’ bar after US pre-clearance security. They now have you scan your own passport, as they take your photo, and ask you basic questions about your trip. Then a human looks at the paper later and asks you questions again, before waving you through to the USA while still in the airport.

We flew over what looked to be Victoria on Vancouver Island, then the sun went all the way down as it outran us, and the ocean below was completely dark. It was my first over-ocean flight. Eventually we reached the Hawaiian islands, and I snapped some photos of what I guess was Honolulu below, before we landed. The airport was not busy at that time of night, and the ad at the luggage claim said there was a shuttle available. I’d also read about it in a travel book on the plane. Their ticket selling person was not visible, so we and others had to wait at the shuttle for them to come along and process our payments, but eventually we got into Waikiki after a short drive. The security guard at our building gave us the key that had been set aside for us, and we were in our room in no time.

The waterway north of Waikiki beach was polluted. There was an unprotected bike lane, in the door-zone, down the busy one-way street beside it.
classic car parked on street
The walkway was attractive, and well used by joggers and cyclists.

Tiny birds no bigger than a cigarette

litter in waterway

litter in waterway

Several busy intersections were blessed with scramble crossing.
Scramble crossing

The view of the sunset from the first building we stayed in, wasn’t entirely spectacular, but was still special.
Sunset
There was a man below in the street shouting at traffic for hours. We had a nap, and he was still/or back at it when we woke. The time difference was 6 hours, so jet lag was definitely a thing. 3pm felt almost like bedtime in energy levels. One the upside, we could get up at 7am with no problem at all.

continued…

STC Bus Service Couldn’t Survive the SaskParty

This news makes me so mad and disappointed. The future of Saskatchewan got a little more bleak today.

“What are the core services that people expect from government – and it is not necessarily a bus company,” Finance Minister Kevin Doherty said Wednesday.

“As for the short window of time before service ends, the province said new buses were on order and they would have to pay for them.

One of the worst parts of this is that the effing CTF finally gets their way. Now there’s no feasible means to exist in a small town without a car. If you’re blind, or can’t drive, you’re screwed. It’s a heartless cut that hurts seniors, environmentalists, people with disabilities who cannot drive, and makes life less likely to thrive in small town Saskatchewan.

ADDED:

“You guys don’t know what you’re doing to small communities. Think about the little people.”

One Nigerian immigrant doesn’t know how she’ll bring her daughter into Saskatoon for medical appointments. An elderly Saskatoon woman said she won’t be able to travel anymore to the Manitou Springs Resort and Mineral Spa near Watrous. Another man lamented the loss of parcel service as he headed to pick up some car parts ordered from Prince Albert.

My life is shutting down

It’s the sort of problem that cannot be solved without government support. If people could form a co-operative and offer replacement service, they would, but they simply wouldn’t make enough money to offer this vital link between communities. It cannot be overstated what a body blow this is to rural Saskatchewan, and that even includes cities like Weyburn, Humboldt, and Yorkton.

Sustainable Fossil Fuel Myths

I think the Fossil Fuel industry isn’t going to manage to sustain their myths. They say things that a kid with a 5th grade education should figure out are not true.

Burning natural gas is not sustainable. It’s a fossil fuel. It will run out, and it produces waste gas that contributes to climate change. Yet their project engineer Keith says it produces, “sustainable electricity that is reliable and also good for the environment.”

I looked this place up, and it looks like it would be a terrifically efficient natural gas power plant. Unfortunately it still isn’t sustainable, and does not produce renewable energy. I flew over the site west of Edmonton in February and looked it up to figure out if it was coal or natural gas they were burning. It’s not really clear to me what’s causing that smoke.

Alberta natural gas power Sundance 7

Saskatchewan is familiar with Premier Wall pushing the incorrect idea that burning fossil fuels is “sustainable”.

SaskParty Math Rivals SaskPower’s

This has been a known problem for months, but who else is talking about the Premier breaking another promise?

Trudeau’s Second Face Speaks Up For Big Oil

The Prime Minister caught a lot of heat for speaking the truth the other month about shutting down the Tar Sands. Then, predictably after furious backpedaling, he let the other side of his face speak about what the Liberals will really allow to permit our climate’s destruction.

“No country would find 173 billion barrels of oil in the ground and just leave them there,” Trudeau said in his address to oil and gas industry executives at Houston’s CERAWeek conference, discussing Alberta’s vast oil sands reserves.

What country should just leave them in the ground? Every damned one. The hypocrite actually says in his speech that he wants to leave the planet better than he found it. Next he claims to be an innovation leader, all the while building 20th century style pipelines for fossil fuels.

It makes me angry that he doesn’t understand the world’s carbon budget still, and seeks to exceed it to our ultimate detriment.

Up Is Down, Left Is Right, Idiots in Government

These are examples of why the US and Canada cannot have nice things. We’ve idiots in government. Who put them there? Was it voters, or people with even more direct influence like Donald Trump and Stephen Harper?

EPA Pruitt is touting a long discredited idea pushed by Heartland Inst. and so-called “Friends of Sci.”.

Can’t blame Premier Wall on Harper or Trump, unfortunately. He’s all your doing, SaskParty voters.

2017 Tobacco Company Ad-buy For YouTube

My YouTube viewing on TV was interrupted by an ad. I uncharacteristically watched it because it seemed political. It was an astroturf ad by what looked like JTI-Macdonald Corp. in the disclaimer flashed at the end of the ad, and it had a spiky haired older guy going by “Mike” (I think), who said he quit smoking on his own (unlikely, but that’s what Tobacco companies want you to believe is possible), and plain packaging is the government interfering in personal decisions. And the result, he claimed, is that illegal tobacco trade will only increase, which is at least six year old nonsense, of course. He wanted people to visit his website to write MPs and Senators.

Laughably, their Twitter bio states:

“We don’t advertise or promote our tobacco brands.”

I thought I’d mention this, since others may see the ad where JTI are surreptitiously arguing they should have the right to promote their tobacco brands. The intention is for people to not realize it’s paid for by Big Tobacco, but shot to look like a home video by a wealthy-libertarian/concerned former smoker.

This is another ad by the same astroturf campaign:

bothsidesoftheargument[dot]ca/open-fact-based-discussion-7

Yep, JTI is going to need all the money they have, for the lawsuits against tobacco companies.

Can we stamp out the tobacco threat to our health? Can we convince Regina to catch up to other municipalities?

#JeffWeCan!

First tweet was at the end of August:

bothsides-tobacco-astroturf

In conclusion, why is Big Tobacco fighting plain packaging?