Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Horror of 2011 and the Hope of 2012

(Click pic to enlarge)

I can't remember a more gloomy New Year's eve, grey, strangely warm, and eerily ominous. Last year, on the final day of 2010, I wrote this:

It was the worst of years. The year when the crazed tyrant Stephen Harper ripped a giant hole in the fabric of Canada, chewed on its heart and its liver, and lied through his bloody teeth.

So what could I possibly write about the even more horrible year of 2011?  The year when a morally degenerate ideologue, and his band of American-style RepubliCons, seized control of the country I love and began screwing it into submission.

For who could ever forget this image, of one of those ghastly Cons firing imaginary bullets into the legacy of murdered women, and the bleeding side of the helpless opposition? 

While his redneck colleagues banged their desks and shouted yee hah or hee haw !!! 

Who could imagine that a Canadian government would be trying to turn us into a sinister prison state, and that only six months after Stephen Harper won his precious majority, in a parliamentary democracy we would be asking this question?

How could we ever forget that the reason Harper got that majority was because he managed to fool so many people, so many Canadians didn't bother to vote, and so many progressives couldn't see the forest for the trees?

Or the poison berries waiting to choke them...

Who could possibly accept that so many Canadians still cling to the illusion that it can't happen here? 

Yup. I have to admit that my usual breezy optimism has taken a bit of a bruising eh? But fortunately in the darkness of Harperland there were enough shining moments to give me the strength to continue to resist.

For how could I ever forget the moving legacy of Jack Layton?

And how those stirring words brought out the best in me and so many others...

How could I forget the many victories of the gay movement in its long march to equality, or the beginning of the Great War on Bullies? After so many young lives lost.

And of course, how could I ever thank the Occupy movement, for inspiring me to believe that we can change the world? And renewing my determination to fight Cons, bigots, bullies, and the greedy grubbers of this world, harder in 2012 than I ever have before.

You know... if I could choose a city to be in at the stroke of midnight, I have to admit it would not be one in gloomy Canada. It would be Edinburgh, where the Scottish people are successfully resisting the Cameron Cons. And where after three days of partying and massive torchlight parades and concerts, the fireworks explode over the castle on the hill.

But since I can't, I'm going to watch this video and imagine the kind of party we're going to have right here in Canada.

The day our ghastly Cons are finally defeated...

My greatest fear is that I won't live to see that day, because I have to have an operation to repair my heart, that was damaged when I was a baby... in an Edinburgh orphanage.

But won't it be a beautiful day? And isn't a better world worth fighting for?

Thank you for reading my little blog.

Happy New Year everybody !!!!


Anonymous said...

And it was on this day in 1857 that a far away monarch decreed a small logging town no one had really heard of to be our nations capital......and the country has never quite been the same since.

Beijing York said...

I <3 your little blog, Simon.

You make me feel hopeful no matter how dark things get.

I'm very sorry to hear that you have heart issues. I will always think of you with positive thoughts, hoping you and I can gripe together well into our golden age.

Best wishes for this new year and always.

Anonymous said...

Simon, even though I don't blog anymore myself, I check in with you regularly as your thoughts so closely mirror my own. Thanks for all the great posts this year. My hope for 2012 is that the progressive movement regains it's voice. Which we lost when the liberal party became too self absorbed and the right was so successful at creating the "message". Hopefully we get a strong NDP leader who will continue with Jack's legacy, someone who by the next election, will obliterate the nightmare that the cons are dragging us all into. By that time though, it's going to take decades to undo the damage, not unlike we're witnessing south of the border. I don't think we've seen anything yet to what these vicious bullies are up to behind the scenes. The stupidity of the electorate who placed these POS's into power will hopefully become our national shame. Can't come soon enough for me. Cheers and keep up the good fight.
BC Waterboy.

Anonymous said...

I'm saddened to hear about your heart condition and I wish you a full recovery afterwards.

Be grateful that you live in a land that will treat your condition without bankrupting you.

And, universal health care is a legacy of a Liberal-NDP minority government.

Harper needn't worry about his heart because he doesn't have one. But you know that already, don't you.

Otherwise, Happy New Year to you and Sebastien and Kerouac.

Rev Effect said...

HNY Simon,

If I may echo a few of the previous commentators, I'd also like to say how sorry I am to hear about your heart issues. I'm not a spiritual person, but here's some healing vibes your way. Based on what I've read here, I think you've got a lot of inner strength that'll help you pull through.

I guess I've only discovered this blog not long ago, and I don't even remember how or where I found the link, but I'm sure glad I did. I can honestly say checking it for updates is now part of my morning coffee routine. Great progressive insight, mixed with humour and anger, and a little bit of hope thrown in, sounds good to me! I find it reassuring that I'm not alone out there in my sentiments, living in a very homogenous, SUV driving, con-friendly part of my city it's easy to feel isolated and forget that there are like-minded "friends" out there.

I suspect you're gonna have A LOT to blog about this coming year, Simon.

Simon said...

hi Way Way Up...yes and I believe that to be another good reason to get rid of the monarchy. Like any other small government/civil service town i.e. Quebec City it may be a nice place to visit but you definitely wouldn't want to live there. It doesn't reflect the new face of our country, it's full of stuffed shirts and pompous poobahs, and the only good thing about it is that it's close to Montreal... :)

Simon said...

hi Beijing ... thank you, and I'm always glad when I can cheer people up, because I honestly believe it's the only way to live.
As for my heart...I had two operations when I was a kid and bounced back stronger than ever, so I have no reason to believe that it won't be the same again. In fact I wouldn't even have mentioned it if I hadn't watched the Hogmanay show on BBC Scotland, and been overcome with emotion for a city I love. Still, at least if I disappear for a while my readers will know where I am. And if I don't come back I want everyone to blame the Harperites. ;)
Best wishes for a happy new year, and may it be much much better than we fear...

Simon said...

hi BC Waterboy...thank you for your kind words, and I defintely intend to keep blogging as long as I can. I do hope you're wrong though about it taking decades to repair the damage the Cons have done. I say we pass an Omnibus Bill declaring everything they have done to be null and void, from the census to any street signs. That should save some time. ;)
But of course it really is up to us to get our act together, and do what we must to defeat them. I'm going to try to challenge progressives to do that, and be more positive myself. At this point I figure we all know that the Cons are bad, and we should focus on ways to slow down their agenda, and eventually defeat them.
All the best to you and yours in the New Year !!!

Simon said...

hi Torontonian...yes I never cease to be grateful for our wonderful medicare system, and whatever we do we must not let Harper and his gang destroy it.
And no I can't see Harper going to see the Wizard to ask for a new heart. If he dares try, I shall instruct the Wiz to give him a brick with a string attached, or a cuckoo clock. ;)
Happy New Year to you and yours !!!!

Simon said...

hi Rev Effect...thank you for your god wishes. As I told Beijing I am not at all afraid. I have been in and out of hospitals quite a bit, and have met many patients with terrible illnesses who have inspired me with their bravery and their good cheer, and I firmly believe that laughter is the best medicine.
And yes, this year is shaping up to be quite a momentous one, and I remain optimistic that good will win out. The seeds that were planted in 2010 will grow into beautiful trees, and the evil weeds will be uprooted far more easily than we can imagine right now. Mother Nature is on our side and she will not stand for any other outcome.
In fact I'm so confident of that I intend to ask Santa next year for a very large trowel, and at least a ton of fireworks. :)
Happy New Year to you and yours !!!!!

BC Mary said...

Simon, you have drawn a wonderfully astute, positive crowd of commenters around you. Surely (I hope) that means Good luck to all.

May I ask, please, when you're revising the statutes with enlightened post-Harper legislation, would you find a way to rescind the corrupt BCRail-CN deal?

We give our time, our hearts and our hopes to certain broad issues and some of us are committed to salvaging BC Rail (Canada's 3rd largest railway, and lifeline of the Province of B.C.)

I simply can't accept that a deal which was rammed together in defiance of the public wishes, which was achieved by corrupt means, and which was literally tossed aside ... should be accepted as a done deal. There are even clauses which have been breached, and yet nothing seems to shake the Harperish/Campbelloid style of rip and destroy.

I mean, think of Harper's handling of Atomic Energy of Canada, literally tossed aside. His efforts to desparage or destroy CBC. His destruction of the Saskatchewan Wheat Board ... oh please, dont get me started.

But if you'd like to drop in at my place for more, I'm at:

And best of good luck with your surgery, Simon.

sassy said...

Dear Simon,
How can it be that you, the blogger with the best heart ever – shares the news that you require heart surgery?

I join those above in wishing you a speedy and complete recovery from your surgery.

Wishing you Sebastian and Kerouac - A guid New Year to ane an' a' and mony may ye see

Cathie from Canada said...

Love your blog, Simon. And love to you, too, especially when you will be undergoing surgery.
We'll fight the good fight together.

Simon said...

hi BC Mary...yes they are a great group of commenters aren't they? It never ceases to amaze me how my humble posts can elicit such intelligent discussion.
I'm afraid I don't know anything about the BC Rail controversy, but all I can say is I love trains, I consider them the best and the most Canadian way to travel, so I'll try to get myself up to speed on the situation.
Thanks for your good wishes, and happy new year to you and yours !!!

Simon said...

hi sassy...thank you for those sweet words. And don't you worry a bit. I've been through this before, they tell me it will be the last operation I'll need, I'll be as fit as a fiddle in a matter of days, and back blogging the day after. I think it's fair to say I've had to battle adversity from the time I was born, and as they say what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Or as my Scottish granny used to say, he who is born to be hanged will never be drowned.
I consider myself one of the luckiest people in the world, and with Dr Seb to spoil me rotten how can I complain. ;)
Or fail to be thankful...

Some hae meat and cannae eat
and some nae meat that want it.
But we hae meat and we can eat
so say the Lord be thankit!

And a guid new year to you and yours !!!

Simon said...

hi Cathie...thanks for your kind words. I probably should have kept the news to myself instead of worrying people. But I am truly blessed to have such great progressive friends like you and the others, I know you'll hold the fort while I am briefly out of commission. And do it most EXCELLENTLY.
Happy new year to you and yours !!! :)

marie said...

Hi Simon' I love your blog & your humor. I check it everyday. Good luck with the surgery and with your attitude, I do not think for a moment that your surgery will be anything but successful.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

Wishing you a safe healthy 2012. Looking forward to more of your posts.

Thank You Simon, Marie

Simon said...

hi Marie...thank you for your encouraging words. I'm quite confident that the surgery will be a success. Because I fully intend to be sitting up on the operating table, directing the operation, and blogging at the same time... ;)