Business to Planet: Survival First, We'll Go Green Later

We are so screwed. Today's Business Incubator on the Globe and Mail website considers the question of how important the environment should be to your business. Considering this is being taped and put on the web for anyone to see, you have to assume this group of business owners and consultants are putting their best face forward. And as it turns out, the consensus Canada's business people want the world to see is that the public doesn't really care about the environment so why should they? Moreover, as we're in a recession, business people have to worry about their own survival before concerning themselves about anything as abstract as the planet's.

In other words, if you and I, as consumers, don't stop buying over-packaged, toxic products shipped from the four corners of the globe (because we have sooooo many options), companies won't stop making them. In fact, they'll make more.

Sounds like yet more evidence that the only way to get anything accomplished for the environment is through strong federal legislation. But, hey, that's just me.

That's gonna leave a mark on the ol' endowment fund

When you start eating your seed corn, you're screwed, or so the old story goes.

So, in a high-tech, information-age, knowledge economy, what happens when your elite universities are slipping into an economic death-spiral and refuse to face up to the fact?

This is a major, if understated, new development in the slow unwinding of America. If they don't figure it out, but quick, there is no good end to this story.

North America has, frankly, been suffering from a lack of investment in knowledge for quite some time, and this is only going to exacerbate it.

If it's not addressed, it's only going to be a matter of time before the exciting new breakthroughs begin emanating from China and India, not Europe and North America.

Six In The Morning

1 HAIL TO THE CHIEF Shawn Atleo is the new head of the Assembly of First Nations after a long, long, long vote that started yesterday and just ended shortly after eight this morning. The 42-year-old Atleo, who comes from Vancouver Island, defeated second-place candidate Perry Bellgarde of Saskatchewan by capturing 58 per cent of the vote, which was held in Calgary. Would-be leaders need 60 per cent support from the AFN, but Bellgarde conceded after Atleo captured 58 per cent of the vote onn the ninth ballot. Here's the story in the Globe and Mail.

2 WORKING CLASS Saskatchewan teens get the legislation they've been lobbying for and now they can start working at age 14 (some restrictions apply). Our teens deserve the right to work five three-hour shifts in the service industry every weekday (they can work extra shifts on the weekend, presumably). I'm just relieved that the bullies in Saskatchewan's business community--who I assume opposed the Sask Party government's changes because conservatives like traditional values, like saving your hard work for school--aren't trying to block this forward-looking legislation. (StarPhoenix)

3 TAZE TRUTH A report on Tasers and policing comes out today. The CBC has a brief report here. I suspect the report will report that tasers are insanely dangerous. Dog Blog will report back on this later.

4 COME ON, YOU GUYS! U.S. President Barack Obama held a high-profile news conference yesterday that observers say was an attempt to sell health care reform directly to Americans. But it's a hard sell because while Americans overwhelmingly (72 per cent in one poll) support a public option in health care, they also overwhelmingly vote for politicians--Democrats AND Republicans--who oppose such so-called socialism. Glad I live in Canada. If I get cancer I won't need my insurance agent's permission to have treatment. (New York Times)

"5 THERE WOULD BE NO UNITED STATES IF IT HAD NOT BEEN FOR GOD" The Guardian's journalists can write all the well-written, impartially-reported stories they want. I say it's time for Texas' school-sabotaging fundamentalist Christians to fuck off. I have no doubt Texas' many smart, sane citizens agree.

6 DAILY MOON: THE TRUTH IS OUT THERE Here's an amazing documentary by director William Karel on how the moon landing was faked. I post it for all you die-hard conspiracy cats. (Stanley Kubrick filmed it? Really?) I saw Dark Side Of The Moon (Opération Lune in the original French) on CBC's The Passionate Eye a few years ago and vouch for its excellence but I haven't watched this particular file to the end so if there are any weird problems please zap us an e-mail at feedback@prairiedogmag.com. UPDATE: well, here's one weird problem...the ending is clipped short and the credits are only partly visable. Which destroys the entire point of the doc, since (spoiler!) there's actually a twist ending. So I'm yanking this video. But if you ever get a chance to see Dark Side Of The Moon, check it out.