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Working vacation

December 17th, 2008 | Posted by Amy Boughner in Personal - (Comments Off on Working vacation)

It’s been a long four weeks since I got back from my post-election vacation and some of the most exciting in Canadian political history, but I am ready for my Christmas vacation and incredibly happy that it starts tomorrow.

I hope to come back to a calmed-down office and a resolved transit strike.

But now I will think only of the two lovely weeks ahead of me and what I plan to do with them:

1) I will finish my scarf and at least one of socks I’ve got on my needles

2) I will read (I finished Twiling last night – meh – and I have a pile of books to get started on, including the Yarn Harlot’s new one)

3) I will give my puppy all the exercise his little heart desires (depending on the weather)

4) I will clean the house and purge (I hate having so many things just lying around)

5) I will lose my voice screaming in support of our boys at the Canada-US game in the greatest tournament ever (World Junior Hockey Championships!)

6) I will make an effort to keep up with the news

7) I will get exercise and work on watching what I eat. I’ve been doing better, but not well.

8) I will try to be inspired every day, write something every day and generally keep the creative part of me happy every day. I might even start sketching again.

9) I will make an honest attempt at mapping out my future.

I will come back to work refreshed and ready to go with plans in place and the drive to impress my bosses. They keep telling us that they want our office to be less like a drive-thru (meaning, they don’t want to have to come to us and “order,” they want us to anticipate their needs), and I want to bring ideas forth.

When I was in high school I was very much a quiet person. I only spoke when I was called upon to do so because when I spoke out of turn I usually got embarassed. I hate being wrong and I really hate being called on it.

After high school I took a year off and then went away to college and I was fundamentally changed. In college I wanted to prove that I was smart and I did have ideas and so I spoke up, I raised my hand to give answers, I asked questions. I didn’t care what the people around me thought because I was there for myself and I knew I would only get out what I put in to my education. As a result I was top of my class with a good deal of confidence.

After college I was unemployed for three  months before taking a bad job. The paper I moved across the country to work for folded after two months and I ended up back at home and unemployed for another six months.

That year took a huge toll on me. When I left school I was sure that I was on the right path. I was meant to be a journalist and I was going to succeed – and furthermore I was going to do it without my father’s connections. But I didn’t. At all.

By the time I quit another job and went back to university it had only gotten worse. I am a shadow of that girl and I miss her terribly. She knew she was capable and I second-guess everything. She would hand in assignments knowing that she would get top marks, I hand in work and wait for someone to point out the mistakes I missed.

With the help of a good boss that girl is trying to make a comeback and I intend to do everything I can to help her along.

The thing that's been driving me crazy for a week now…

December 7th, 2008 | Posted by Amy Boughner in Issues - (Comments Off on The thing that's been driving me crazy for a week now…)

It bothers me that the Conservative Party is lying about this whole thing being unconstitutional, undemocratic and unprecedented. It bothers me that Canadians are being told that we didn’t elect Stephane Dion because unless you live in Calgary Southwest or Saint Laurent-Cartierville, you didn’t elect either Dion or Stephen Harper because we don’t elect the government, we elect a Parliament. Unless your a member of the party that happens to win the most seats, you don’t ever have a chance of electing the Prime Minister, because parties choose their own leader.

It bothers me that thousands of Canadians are protesting something they don’t even really understand.

But the thing that bothers me most is that the liars and the people who are only acting as though they know how Canada’s system works are the ones explaining it to the people who admitted they didn’t know. Those are the ones who are winning the war because people believe them. This whole country needs to sit down and take a lesson in Canadian politics (which I did in Grade 10, but apparently I was the only one with that curriculum).

Whether you support Stephen Harper or the coalition, whether you agree with the coalition at all, one thing you cannot argue about is how the system works. You can be angry about the power the Governor General holds as long as you understand that that’s how our system works. You can call this a blatant power grab as long as you admit that the power grab as long as you admit that it is neither unconstitutional nor unprecedented.

And don’t even get my started on the idea that this is somehow undemocratic. We don’t elect a government, we elect a Parliament and the Parliament bestows confidence.

From two men who said it better than I could:

December 2nd, 2008 | Posted by Amy Boughner in Issues - (Comments Off on From two men who said it better than I could:)

“Elections don’t elect governments, they elect Parliaments. Parliaments make a government, Parliaments can break a government. ” – Nelson Wiseman, University of Toronto Professor on CBC Newsworld, December 2, 2008.

“Well, I actually think that maybe our schools should do a better job of teaching people as to how a Parliamentary system works, because this is what is being talked about is totally constitutional and totally within the legal framework of how a Parliamentary democracy works … It’s certainly appropriate within the way our Parliamentary system works.” – Liberal Senator David Smith on CBC Newsworld, December 2, 2008

To quote John Hodgeman, That is all.

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