Thursday
April 17, 2002

Bureaucracide

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Here are a few of my favorite online haunts:

REALTOR.ca
[This is the site I visit to fantasize about living in Toronto again, which is almost every single day during the winter]

Jonathan Cainer's Zodiac Forecasts
[This is where I visit in the morning, when I need a positive spin on things past, present and future.]

Living Local
[This is where I go to see what Canadians are up to, sometimes I even buy things from the businesses listed there.]

Environment Canada Weather
[This is the site I visit every morning, and before every road trip during the winter]

Yesterday was a day to remember. Attila called home late in the morning to suggest an afternoon picnic. This is a rare event in itself. Combined with the most beautiful spring day we are ever likely to encounter, it is unprecedented. We can credit this windfall to equipment failure.

Attila arrived home just after lunch, with a shopping bag full of picnic goodies. We assembled sandwiches with cheeses, meats, tomatoes, onions, and lettuce. Fresh fruit and vegetables were washed and packed into the cooler. A big bottle of soda pop and a bucket of ice were added for good measure. Then off we drove in the sunshine.

A picnic-table, under softly scented pine trees, was where we spent our afternoon. The breeze was a warm 27 degrees Celsius. The beautiful drowsy afternoon in the forest was followed with a drive to the beach, on Lake Huron.

Where weeks before mounds of ice had towered up to fifteen feet high, cold waves washed against the windswept sand. Distant glimpses of movement suggested human or beast some miles down the shore. But for that, Attila and I were utterly alone.

We walked for miles, listening to the waves and the roaring wind. Finally, tired and happy, we drove home for a nice hot supper.

maggie turner journal

I have decided to record my feelings and observations about the looming SARS epidemic in Canada. We have not yet been personally touched by this situation. Those of us who are not in denial are well and truly concerned for our safety. Panic is futile, though difficult to resist at times.

One cannot be conscious in Canada, and be unaware that SARS is a serious threat to public health.

I said to Attila, that first week of news coverage, "There is not a hope in hell that SARS will be contained in Canada." I do not believe we have developed the kind of leadership needed to weather such a storm. Canada is not unique in this regard. Then again, perhaps I am wrong about Canada and the state of human affairs.

I have been watching the news with interest. The public receives assurances from our "leaders" that they are still in control. "Leaders" who in reality fit more the description of Bureaucrats. The machine of policy grinds on, as SARS lazily follows the currents through this easily charted human sea. Elected representatives and hired public servants are our defenders, our only infrastructure for the containment of SARS in Canada.

Each level of bureaucracy has rules to enforce and a territory of some kind to defend. The weakneses of the "competetive" model in human affairs are becoming increasingly evident.

Personally, I would prefer strong and decisive Federal and Provincial coordination of our struggle. Lives are at stake. Infighting is now something that will cost the populace much more than high poverty rates, alienation, frustration, and high blood pressure. Then, of course, there is the matter of economic impact...

The elderly, who are most at risk, know oh-so-well how fragile life can be. Some "baby boomers" will remember small pox vaccinations and polio, but either disease touched few. The sad reality is that the majority of the population in Canada has no experience with this degree of threat to public health, and seemingly every expectation that our infrastructure will protect us from harm. Innocence can be both wonderful and deadly; context is everything.

Our context has been changing rapidly.



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Quote
"... tried that Toronto Health Connection number again ...
Except it turns out she wasn't appalled by what happened — or didn't — at the airport. She was appalled by the nurse at Telehealth Ontario.
For one thing, she said, the province has no business saying who is and who isn't quarantined. It is a city matter. "
from Toronto Star, April 17, 2003, Slinger, Should I stay in or should I go?



Weather
15:57 EDT
Temp: 3`C
Humidity: 65%
Wind: E 43 km/h
Barometric: 102.0 kPaSunrise
6:40 AM EDT
Sunset
8:09 PM EDT
 

Page by Page: A Woman's Journal
Photography
Poetry
by Maggie Turner

Canadian Maggie Turner writes and publishes poetry, photography, and a personal journal online. Her work reflects the current way of life in Canada, embracing Canada's past, present, and future in a unique portrayal of everyday life. Maggie's voice is one of the many that actively depict the rich diversity of Canadian culture.

Photography: "a term which comes from the Greek words photos (light) and graphos (drawing). A photograph is made with a camera by exposing film to light in order to create a negative. The negative is then used in the darkroom to print a photograph (positive) onto light-sensitive paper.
Source: University of Arizona Glossary

Poetry: "a form of speech or writing that harmonizes the music of its language with its subject. To read a great poem is to bring out the perfect marriage of its sound and thought in a silent or voiced performance. At least from the time of Aristotle's Poetics, drama was conceived of as a species of poetry."
Source: Creative Studios

Journal: " "Though a journal may be many things - a treasury, a storehouse, a jewelry box, a laboratory, a drafting board, a collector's cabinet, a snapshot album, a history, a travelogue..., a letter to oneself - it has some definable characteristics. It is a record, an entry-book, kept regularly, though not necessarily daily.... Some (entries) will be nearly illegible, written in the dark in the middle of the night.... Not only is it a record for oneself, but of oneself. Every memorable journal, any successful journal, is honest. Nothing sham, phony, false...." (Dorothy Lambert from Ken Macrorie's book, Writing to be Read )
A journal is a way to keep track of your thoughts about what you read... as well as what you did on any given day."
Source: Journal Writing

A Blog is an online journal created by server side software, often hosted by a commercial interest.

"The term "weblog" was coined by Jorn Barger[4] on 17 December 1997. The short form, "blog," was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog Peterme.com in April or May 1999.[5][6][7] Shortly thereafter, Evan Williams at Pyra Labs used "blog" as both a noun and verb ("to blog," meaning "to edit one's weblog or to post to one's weblog") and devised the term "blogger" in connection with Pyra Labs' Blogger product, leading to the popularization of the terms."
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_blogging


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