People Don’t Like to be Deceived

People don’t like being deceived. The reason we don’t like to be deceived is that we make decisions based on our knowledge and when we are deceived we make decisions based on a wrong premise. We would have made other decisions had we had full disclosure.

To no fault of our own, we end up making choices we regret when we learn the full story.

It’s everybody’s responsibility to get a complete and accurate picture, however, we cannot do so if we don’t have access to information. If information is withheld from us, or if it is misconstrued we cannot make an informed choice. We cannot make the best choice. We end up making the choice others decided we should make.

When we learn the truth we feel manipulated. We lose trust. This is why it is important to tell the truth, even if it hurts. This is how we maintain faith in people and in institutions.

A Psalm of David.

15 O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent?
    Who shall dwell on your holy hill?

He who walks blamelessly and does what is right
    and speaks truth in his heart;
who does not slander with his tongue
    and does no evil to his neighbor,
    nor takes up a reproach against his friend;
in whose eyes a vile person is despised,
    but who honors those who fear the Lord;
who swears to his own hurt and does not change;
who does not put out his money at interest
    and does not take a bribe against the innocent.
He who does these things shall never be moved.

Canadian Conservative Leadership Debate

I watched a portion of the leadership debates yesterday and today. One thing I noted was the tag line beneath Erin O’Toole “Won’t say there is systemic racism.” I’m not sure if there were other tags, since I didn’t watch the entire debates and didn’t notice any others but I thought it strange that CBC would offer a printed commentary mid-debate.

The question of systemic racism was asked in at least four different ways of Erin O’Toole. His consistent response was that racism should not and would not be tolerated. Anyone watching understood that he was not going to say there is systemic racism, without the CBC needing to print a caption below him while he was speaking.

Whether there is systemic racism or not, it appears we now have yet another category that defines people.

Other candidates offered some well thought out responses to the same question. A periodical review of the justice system and law enforcement in Canada is a good recommendation. I’m not going to evaluate the responses of the candidates here.

 

Canadian governments give Huawei millions in funding while debate rages over its 5G role

Critics warn there is a serious risk that Huawei will build ‘back doors’ into the 5G technology allowing China access to Canadian private information

Tom Blackwell, February 3, 2020

Commentary

While the United States and Australia have banned Huawei’s next generation 5G systems as a threat to national security, former Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, in 2016, announced a $16 million grant for research around 5G development and the same fiscal year the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Canada’s federal funding agency for university-based research, awarded $6.9 million in grants to university researchers working with Huawei. The funding agreements are over four years.

Will Huawei be a future threat to Canada? What do the U.S. and Australia know that Canada does not know, or is choosing to ignore? Or do we just chalk their caution up to paranoia? I prefer to err on the side of caution when it comes to privacy issues and national security.

A Note to My Followers About Change Coming to this Site

I’m sure you’ve noticed fewer posts here over the years. My time of writing about the writing process seems to be fading into history. I’ve decided that’s OK. Over the next few months I plan to change my focus. I hope you will stick around as I start to write about a variety of subjects of interest to me.

As I read news and opinion columns, watch videos and podcasts, or even read books, I constantly find myself wanting to share segments that stand out for me. I read and hear memorable things I want to record. I need a place to archive these quotable insights so that they don’t disappear into the thin air of yesterday’s news.

There will be many categories, since I’m a very curious person and want to know about a lot of topics. You will notice my slight lean to the right on issues. I welcome alternative views and respectful dialogue. I especially encourage my readers to correct me if I accidentally happen on fake news. I’m pretty astute when it comes to this, but, hey, it can happen.

So, come along for the ride. Let me know what you think about the change. It’s a little scary because you will see my personality coming out. But it’s also scary because I’m not sure I understand all of the political correctness protocol involved. I’m sure there will be times when I will veer off a little. Who knows what that will mean?

Thanks for your continued support. I deeply value my readers.

 

The Right to Die with Dignity

Today I was angry. It felt as though something boiled over in me when I read the subject line of an email addressed to me: Help us protect the right to die with dignity. In Canada our government is trying to pass legislation regarding euthanasia. There is a “consultation questionnaire” which Canadians are encouraged to respond to at justice.gc.ca

I received the email from the BC Civil Liberties Association. I don’t recall ever signing up for mail from the BC Civil Liberties Association. In their letter they threaten that if we don’t offer medically assisted dying (MAiD) in Canada then it will “lead to premature deaths by suicide by some individuals.” Which frightening alternative do you prefer? The outcome is precisely the same.

I, frankly, don’t see any difference between shooting someone in the head at short range,  or injecting someone with a needle, or subjecting a person to the electric chair. And to me it is not compassion to help someone kill themselves. Frankly, I’m not there yet.

You will note that the questionnaire assumes all are in favor of assisted dying which until now was called murder or homicide or manslaughter and was considered the worst criminal offense because it ended a life.

Our government now wants to put some new guidelines, some parameters, around helping someone to kill themselves. No, the survey never asks if you are in favor of having medical professionals help someone to end their life. It only asks about which parameters you consider important in preparing for the procedure of terminating a life.

What made me angry is that suddenly “assisted dying” is a “right.” And it is a right that needs to be protected. In other words, we want to make sure you get to die, and that nobody interferes with that.

“Mature minors” should have the right to assisted death, we are learning.

The whole purpose of this new legislation is to ensure that “eligibility is broadened to individuals who are not near death.” This is what the BCCLA states in their email to me. The BCCLA adds:

The additional “safeguards” that the government is contemplating are unnecessary and potentially unconstitutional barriers to MAID.

Oh, I have so many questions around this, but our government’s mind is already made up. This is the next new “right” Canadians will be privileged to have protected.

In July 2016 the federal government passed legislation permitting medical assistance in dying. Since then 6,700 have died with medical assistance. A recent court ruling in Quebec has made it necessary for Canada to broaden the eligibility for euthanasia. You can read about it here

The Court declared the “reasonable foreseeability of natural death” criterion in the federal Criminal Code, as well as the “end-of-life” criterion in Quebec’s provincial law on medical assistance in dying, to be unconstitutional.

My problem is with assisted dying being a “right.” Do doctors also have a “right” not to assist dying? Do hospices have a “right” not to assist dying? A hospice in Delta, BC has been ordered to offer MAID by February 3 or lose government funding, even though the facility states that MAID is not compatible with the purposes of the Hospice Society.

“To not allow Medical Assistance in Dying brings with it potential human rights violations,” said former board president Jim Levin, who is in favor of MAID at the hospice.

The hospice has posted their statement here

Hospice palliative care and MAiD substantially differ in multiple areas including in philosophy, intention and approach.[xi] Hospice palliative care focuses on improving quality of life and symptom management through holistic person-centered care for those living with life threatening conditions. Hospice palliative care sees dying as a normal part of life and helps people to live and die well. Hospice palliative care does not seek to hasten death or intentionally end life. In MAiD, however, the intention is to address suffering by ending life through the administration of a lethal dose of drugs at an eligible person’s request.

We are to believe that removing barriers to this “procedure” is reflective of the “evolving views” of Canadians in just the past couple of years. There is a sense of pride over how progressive Canadians have become. However, hospices want to provide a “safe space” where death is not hastened. Will our government deny this right?

We are being told this is just another “choice,” needing protecting. It is another one of our “equality rights.” It is not the right to die that is being questioned. We all have that right. Nothing has changed in that department. But what is different now is, the right to have a medical professional condone your suicide and help you with the act.

It is particularly cruel to those who are vulnerable and those with disabilities.

As stated, here this irreversible procedure could easily be the result of “temporary anger, depression, a misunderstanding of one’s prognosis, ignorance of alternatives, financial considerations, strain on family members or significant others, or improper persuasion….”

I am very concerned when assisted dying suddenly becomes a “right” which has to be protected. This is not like the other rights we have seen come to the forefront in recent years. This does not make your quality of life better. It ends it. I am also very concerned about our move towards a flippant view of the sanctity of life. We all know this ends up down the slippery slope of who decides which life is worth preserving.

Life is Like a River

Just like a river, life keeps on flowing. It never stops and takes a break.

I have been in the habit of dividing my life into segments, somehow thinking that there is a “stop” when one segment comes to an end. But life does not “pause.” It doesn’t even slow down. It just keeps flowing like a river.

And one day this river will be swallowed up into the great ocean of eternity.

As long as I am on this earth I have influence. I can make choices. I can affect outcomes. One day I will no longer be able to do so. Maybe I will look down from somewhere in the sky and see what is going on here on earth. I don’t know. But I won’t be able to talk to anyone, or do anything. Have you ever thought of this?