Archive for September, 2008

CBC news to provide more balance

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

CBC ombudsman Vince Carlin …

But there is another significant aspect to our policy. As mentioned, it calls on CBC outlets to touch on the widest range of views possible. On CBCNews.ca, there does not appear to be a wide range of “pointy” views. For instance, many of those who complained claimed that there is no one of an opposite ideological viewpoint readily apparent on the service. Unfortunately, this appears to be true. As I observed in an earlier review concerning CBC Newsworld programming, the CBC should not necessarily avoid having people of strong views on the air, but we must ensure that people of differing views are given a fair opportunity.

(source)

CBC publisher John Cruickshank…

More than 300 people have taken the trouble this month to complain to the CBC ombudsman about a column we ran on CBCNews.ca about Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin on Sept. 5. The column, by award-winning freelance writer Heather Mallick, was also pilloried by the National Post in Canada and by Fox News in the U.S. … Vince Carlin, the CBC Ombudsman, has now issued his assessment of the Mallick column. He doesn’t fault her for riling readers by either the caustic nature of her tone or the polarizing nature of her opinion. But he objects that many of her most savage assertions lack a basis in fact. And he is certainly correct. Mallick’s column is a classic piece of political invective. It is viciously personal, grossly hyperbolic and intensely partisan. And because it is all those things, this column should not have appeared on the CBCNews.ca site … We failed you in this case. And as a result we have put new editing procedures in place to insure that in the future, work that is not appropriate for our platforms, will not appear. We are open to contentious reasoned argument but not to partisan attack. It’s a fine line. Ombudsman Carlin makes another significant observation in his response to complainants: when it does choose to print opinion, CBCNews.ca displays a very narrow range on its pages. In this, Carlin is also correct. This, too, is being immediately addressed. CBCNews.ca will soon expand the diversity of voices and opinions and be home to a diverse group of writers with many perspectives. In this, we will better reflect the depth and texture of this country. We erred in our editorial judgment. You told us in no uncertain terms. And we have learned from it.

(source)

Wow.  I never thought I’d see the CBC admitting its bias.  Now to see whether they actually follow through with their promises.

Intruder

Monday, September 29th, 2008

Spotted in the neighbourhood.

The Intruder

I thought this behemoth was appropriately named.

Highway 1 Revisited

Sunday, September 28th, 2008

We spent so many years living on a single income that when I hear of big-name artists performing at venues within a reasonable driving distance of our little city the thought of attending just doesn’t cross my mind.  It doesn’t fit our family budget – end of discussion.

So when Charlotte casually announced that she had been chatting with her cousin Derek on Facebook and he had suggested that bringing the Ancient Uncle to the upcoming Bob Dylan concert in Regina would be fun, and that Uncle Marv and I should go too, my paradigm was shaken.

The upshot is that the tickets have been purchased and on November 1st two generations of Dylan fans will drive from P.A. and Shell Lake to Regina to enjoy a music icon.

I’m looking forward to our road trip.  I just hope he’ll perform a song or two from Blood on the Tracks, and a couple from his born-again Christian period.

The sound of falling trees in the absence of humans

Thursday, September 25th, 2008

Interesting research findings in Transactions of the Important Tree Scientists 120(2): 201-209 …

Large woody debris plays an important role in stream habitat for fish, macroinvertebrates and thinking spots for “half-pint” from Little House on the Prairie and Pooh (Milne 1948). Little data exists monitoring the actual accumulation of debris, including whole trees, on the forest floor (Robison and Beschta 1990). For centuries, humanity has pondered the question “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound” (Cockburn 1988).

….

The results of this original research project provide strong empirical evidence supporting the hypothesis that if a tree does fall in the forest,  it does indeed make a sound, whether anyone is there to hear it or not.

Full article here.

Still here …

Thursday, September 25th, 2008

… just unmotivated.

Elk hunt finished, off to Slave Lake

Sunday, September 7th, 2008

Our elk hunt was semi-successful.  If the rut has started, we didn’t have much evidence, since about the only bugling we heard was the attempts of other hunters.  However Glenn saved us from being skunked by shooting a big fat cow elk that came to his Hootchie Mama call. Unfortunately I didn’t have a camera along, until Glenn and Mike picked up one of those cheap disposable cameras for me when they did the meat run.

Unfortunately I came back from the hunt having picked up a dilly of a cold.  It’s deep in my chest, and really not much fun at al.  I’ve been seriously thinking of not going to Slave Lake for the WESBOGY meeting, but if I’m not feeling worse by tomorrow, I think it will be a go.

So once again, things will be quiet around here for awhile.  I realize most of my readers (including the spammer bots) may not be interested in forest growth & yield technicalities, so I’ll probably spare you of insights gained this week.