Sports-free Journal rundown:

Just a couple of Journal notes before I go to work:

The Letters page (A19) has a debate going on about the onlookers in the fatal beating on a city bus last week. I talked with a girl I know from Edmonton Police last night, and she said without seeing the circumstances it would be hard to tell. I probably would have done something, but I'm not sure. I'm also in much better shape than the average Edmonton Transit passenger, and some 50 years younger.

Also on the Letters page is ranting about "private healthcare in Alberta". Yawn. Wake me up when we get some. Won't be anytime soon. Naturally, the socialist-healthcare lobby is in full force: Eric Hemphill, research co-ordinator for Centre for Health Promotion Studies at the UofA writes:

In fact, Ray Romanow has done the 'consultation' work already, and found no evidence that two-tier medicine is the way forward for Canada. The U.K. tried it, and it failed. The United States, with its for-profit system, consistently lags behidn countries with public healthcare in many different areas; further, the health status of the U.S. population is one of the poorest in the industrialized world.
I didn't think anybody on Earth still thought that the Romanow report actually gave any sort of insight into the healthcare system. Furthermore, you'd think somebody who was working for "Centre for Health Promotion Studies" would know better than to call the U.S. system (Medicare, Medicaid, mandatory HMOs, etc.) a "for-profit" system. Likewise, why should U.K. failures in implementation concern us? U.K. failures in implementing universal healthcare failed too (as it did in Canada) and that doesn't seem to discourage those who advise its adaptation.

Again on A19, R.M. Wood writes "The one thing that has not been tried in the 40 or more years of the system in this country is the magic of the free market and competition. What is also lacking is any freedom of choice by the consumer of the services." Good letter, though I think that subsequent Journal letter writers, devoid of any economic brains, will take issue with what he describes as the "magic" of the free market. A better explanation, not suitable for Journal letter pages with 275 word suggested maximums [funny, that letter from Eric Hemphill blathered on for at least 600 words -ed] would have little to do with the "magic" or "invisible hands" of the free market and more to do with marginalist theory and/or variable value calculations.

"Altering myths about women: Dance casts birds as metaphors in journey of modern feminist" says C4. A ballet dance about feminism kicks off at the Arts Barns tomorrow. Ironic, really, since Harvard research indicates women really are birds: bitches love money, and while female mammals choose mates based on strong physical characteristics, female birds choose mates based on the size of their territory (ie. assets). Men act like mammals, mind you.

B3 today shows houses along 114th street being demolished to make way for the LRT line. So, er, out of curiosity, what happens if you own a house along the strip and you didn't want to leave? Did the city keep feeding you money until you agreed? Or did eminent domain come into play? (And yes, I'm aware that eminent domain as a legal concept is limited to the Americans).

Likewise Mayor Mandel's "citywide cleanup" covered on B4: if you don't want to do what your "volunteer block captain" wants to do? Or if your neighbourhood doesn't have a single person willing to waste their time doing it?

Questions questions, I tell you. Well, at least I won't be 10 miles from Bill Clinton tonight... (maybe that was the limo I saw cutting through traffic on Jasper Avenue this afternoon?)