Sunday, October 18, 2009
Egomania writ large. Ivan speaks to the masses
Years of not teaching. Not lecturing.
Two hundred eyes on you.
This is what you had missed.
The familiar lecture hall, but this time in open air.
A lovely millpond park in the October light. Hair blowing. Shlivering a little in the wind, half out of nervousness. But that was the way you used to be. A little performance anxiety, just enough before the presentation.
Like Chet Atkins said, " Icould hardly play", but once on the stand you do start a riff or two... Habit. Most comfortable with audience of stangers than even your own kith and kin... Doing a lick on the eradication of povery on World Anti-Poverty Day. Doing a Bob Geldoff, Bono, without the superstar appeal.
How to do your preps for a speech like this.
Took a lot of walking, thinking, figuring out your lead sentence. And, as they used to say in the newspaper business, "once you get past your lead, you've got her whacked."
"In politically correct Canada, we make so much of helping each other out, of political correctness, of elevating the handicapped to near- sainthood, of equal rights for women. But this is all pose. A shibboleth, a callsign. In reality some of our immediat neighbours may as well be in Biaftra or some other godforsaken place. Seniors are starved almost by goverment decree; the handicapped are tucked away where they can not be seen. Single mothers are evicted routinely, even out of illegal apartments whose mold and asbestos had already sickened a young family.
"Here in York Region, the second most affluent part of Canada, there are two thousand families living in abject poverty, and only the fact that they dress like us--Compliments of the Salvation Army-- that they are nearly invisible." And Federal and Provincial governments seem to want to keep them that way."
"Seniors, the unemplyed, Welfare mothers. The handicapped.
" O benevolent, politically correct Canada! Somebody has taken the welfare and disability, the unemployment insurance money, and he won't give it back.
"So try to live on $350 a month if single, with a thousand needed for rent.
" It all began with former Premier Mike Harris and his welfare thieves, Finance Minister Paul Martin and his unemployment insurance grab to restock a bankrupt government --and ending withe Prime Minister Harper with a guns and planes procurement policy for Afghanistan rather than helping the poor and the unemployed."
The audience had been warned by the MC. "He is an outspoken author."
Yes, outspoken. I can see the moderator nearly wince as I seem to harrangue the dignitaries sitting in the front seats.
Not Canadian of me,not polite in the "second-best coutry in the world to live in" according to the U.N.
Ah what do those international New York revellers and carousers know? They smoke, drink, fornicate, smash up cars in Manhattan.. But uh-uh. Not for us unwashed and unprivileged. Shut up and take what you can get. The poor and disinherited, be it Ethiopia or now even Canada..
"And what has the U.N. really ever done for world poverty? It is the NGO's, the Bonos, he non-goverment organizaions that are doing all the heavy lifting, and thank God for them. The U. N. seems to be good at ephemera, at bullshit.
"Got us all to quit smoking, it was the one thing they could do right while people prostitute themselves for a meal, a smoke or a drink in polically correct Canada.
The war in Afghanistan. And the war on human nature.
"A substratum of opium, human trafficking, organized crime seems to permeate all governments, even the U.N.
And governments are somehow part of an unholy union. United Nations? It is corrupt, compromised and nearly depraved.
The rot affects all.
And we in York Region, convinced that our affluence and comfort will never be threatened--look out.
The poor are starting to gather at your gates. And oddly, they are now multinational. Immigrants get f*cked over. Land of milk, soggy oil and honey. Canada needs a wakeup call.
I hand over the microphone. Strangely, to applause.