Interesting stuff – 2017-07-30


I’ve been slow on sharing interesting stuff, in part for reasons I’ve already mentioned. On that note, if you want an update on my wife’s health visit this link. I won’t be using the blog to provide updates.

Speaking of heart transplants, I’ve been doing some research on the subject. Here’s some interesting stuff I discovered:

  • The first human heart transplant was done by Christiaan Barnard in South Africa in December, 1967. The patient lived for 18 days, and died of pneumonia.
  • Modern heart transplantation [I believe in Canada?] became available in 1980.
  • The actual surgery normally takes between four and eight hours.
  • The younger the patient at the time of the transplant, the more successful the outcome. At 40 years of age Denise would certain be considered “young” for this kind of thing.
  • In 2015 (the most recent data I could find) there were 137 people in Canada on the waiting list for a heart transplant.*
  • In 2015 12 people died while on the waiting list.* That doesn’t necessarily mean they died because Canada has a bad track record of wait times. We met somebody who received a new heart because of a sudden heart attack that more or less destroyed their heart. If a heart didn’t happen to become available in a matter of weeks it would have all been over for him.
  • There were 125 heart transplants in 2015 (or 128, depending on the source) 64 of which were to adults between 18 and 59 years of age.*
  • Alberta has this highest rate of heart transplants per million people; 5.1.*
  • In 2015 there were 1,958 people living with a new heart in Canada, 402 of whom resided in Alberta.
  • Donor organs don’t typically cross borders, but Canada did import 26 organs from the USA in 2015 (6 of which were hearts) , and we exported 4 organs (3 of which were hearts).
  • In fact, it’s rare that organs even cross provincial borders. For all organs 373 were imported from other provinces and 2,248 were locally retrieved.

(*) – does not include Quebec data.

References include here, here, here.

I thought Trudeau was all about the middle class. This assessment suggests recent bank of Canada decision may undermine that. I thought it intriguing that they were wringing their hands about household debt, as if massive debt might not be a good idea. Try reminding the government about that.

And the decision to end income splitting is an interesting one for a number of reasons.

  1. There are actually a whole bunch of middle class people who enjoy the benefits of income splitting so, once again, this doesn’t bode well for the demographic Trudeau claims to be greatly concerned about.
  2. People I’ve spoken with about this just shake their heads. One friend acknowledged that it’ll take accountants about five minutes to find ways around this.
  3. Lastly, when there is a perceived “injustice” between the taxation of the wealthy and the taxation of the not-so-wealthy, it is interesting that the government’s solution is to raise taxes for the wealthy. Consider this; an equally effective means of addressing such an “injustice” would be to lower taxes for the not-so-wealthy!

That last point is a lost cause on government that seems designed to find ways of squeezing all the money they can out of its citizens. After all, the government will always know how to invest and spend your money better than you will.

Some are speculating that people aren’t concerned about climate change because they don’t understand how it is their problem. If that’s the case, that paints a sorry picture of the state of society where I only grow concerned about something if it directly impacts me.

However, this appears to be the new tactic. Here’s a report that climate change will have an adverse impact on the economy. What they fail to report is the even more adverse impact that attempting to correct climate change will have on the economy. If they are right then it’s a choice between losing your job right away (when they try to stop global warming) or losing job much later (when it’s too late). Tough call…

And, food for thought, perhaps some people are not concerned because they are convinced the evidence simply isn’t telling the story that climate alarmists want it to tell. Like, maybe, things are actually getting better.

Speaking of climate change, I thought it was supposed to be decimating the polar bear population. Oops, I guess it’s making them healthier and more dangerous.

Catholic schools aren’t allowed to insist that their students learn about Catholicism? What’s next, art-focused schools where students can opt out of art? Maybe science-based schools where students can skip anything having to do with science.

Earlier I wrote that one’s understand of reality will be revealed by the language and concepts they use to describe reality. Here‘s another fascinating illustration from the news. Girls want the “right” to dress provocatively and they want boys to be “educated” not to think of them as sex objects. As with some of the examples at the previous article I wrote, this reveals a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of teenage boys. Actually, men in general. I’ll let Dennis Prager explain.

Once again, concerns are being expressed about unelected institutions forcing the elected Parliament into a corner. In this case, the Senate. With respect to the Supreme Court, he writes,

To anticipate the obvious: this is nothing like the Supreme Court — a body chosen for its specialized expertise, with the narrow responsibility of comparing one law to another, consistent with precedent, as courts in every country do. That’s dangerous enough, without the kind of open-ended remit the Senate has assigned itself, on the basis of no expertise or precedent whatever, in a way that has few parallels in the democratic world.

It’s good that he acknowledges that the situation with the Supreme Court is “dangerous enough,” but not so good that he seems naively optimistic about how the Supreme Court actually works.

Here’s a very interesting article about the failure of right-leaning governments to do what they allegedly want to do. Complete with graphs.

And, from the same author, a profound article about racism. If you are concerned about racism, have been called a racist, or are in any way impacted by this subject, then grab a coffee, settle in, and read this wonderful piece.

Do you remember all those Americans who threatened to move to Canada if Trump won? Yeah, not so much. It turns out they may have been full of even more hot air than Trump!

Maybe they decided not to move here after they found out that we cannot even agree on what makes our country great anyway.

Canada’s military is trying to rebrand itself.

Stop and think about that sentence. If there is any branch of the Canadian public sector that shouldn’t be in the least bit concerned about “branding” it should be the military. There should be exactly two potential target audiences for the Canadian military “brand” – the good guys and the bad guys. The only “brand” the Canadian military needs to portray to the bad guys is “mess with us at your peril.” On the other hand, the only “brand” the Canadian military needs to portray to the good guys is, “we’ve got your back; the bad guys won’t get you.”

Instead, they are going to spend a bunch of Canadian taxpayer money so they can brag about having a “diverse” group of people in their ranks.

But let me humbly suggest that if some terrorist from ISIS finds himself staring down the barrel of a Canadian rifle he is probably going to be far more concerned with the rifle than, say, the sex, race or age of whoever is behind said rifle. And, I dare say, so should the Canadian military.

It reminds me of a scene from My Cousin Vinny. Pardon the language…

Here is a fascinating little anecdote from Russia about the power of peer pressure, combined with authoritarian leadership. And when social justice warriors today expect “virtue signalling” out of the everybody, please recognize that similar power dynamics are at work in those efforts as were at work in Stalin’s Russia.

The leader of a religious sect in India recently died, so they froze his body.

The leaders of Islam and Buddhism died and were buried. This religious leader was turned into a proph-sicle. Jesus, on the other hand, was executed, buried, and walked out of his own grave three days later.

Which religious leader would you be most likely to follow?

Speaking of the crucifixion; another study sheds light on the possible authenticity of the Shroud of Turin. I once heard a highly respected Biblical scholar of the New Testament (and a Christian) strongly suggest that the Shroud of Turin deserves careful consideration as a plausible artifact of the person of Jesus. He bemoaned the fact that it was Protestants, primarily, who were shutting down discussion on the issue because of the very Catholic associations of the shroud.

Interesting stuff.

Wildrose and PC’s overwhelming approved of a merger in Alberta. Both parties voted about 95% in favour of a merger. There is no more unifying force in human nature than a common enemy. Look out, NDP.

Ok, I am getting completely confused. A biological woman in Britain self-identified as a man and then wooed a younger girl. “His” self-identification even included a prosthetic penis which “he” used for sexual acts.

And now “he” is going to jail for sexual deception? I thought we were progressive? I thought we were tolerant? I thought we were in favour of transgender rights? Are we going back to the stone age; back to pre-2010?

For some bizarre reason this is being treated as though her – I mean, “his” – self-identification were not validly transgender, but on what possible grounds is there any real difference? She claimed to be a male, just like a transgender. She altered her natural appearance, just like a transgender. She utilized a prosthetic penis, just like a transgender. She presented herself to others as a male, just like a transgender.

Why is she going to jail for doing exactly what other transgender individuals do?

And you have to wonder just how much pity ought to be extended to a “victim” who professed to be “in love” with the perpetrator, had sex 10 to 15 times with her, agreed to be blindfolded and have her hands tied during sex, yet her lover was always dressed in bandages, a hat and a swimsuit to hide her body and identity.

Where, oh where, has common sense gone?

Just for some laughs, I’ve been enjoying the comedian John Crist:


And many others, but hopefully those give you a couple of good laughs.