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SELICK: This Thanksgiving, thank the vestiges of capitalism

As Thanksgiving 2021 approaches, several provincial governments have announced special lockdowns to keep people from enjoying each other’s company on what is normally a family-oriented weekend. 




For many years, a family member of mine has blessed the annual Thanksgiving meal by saying, “Let us give thanks to the vestiges of capitalism for the delicious food we are about to consume.” 

He was clearly not enamoured of the increasingly socialistic system we’ve lived under for the past few decades, where governments manipulate the supply and the price of everything from chickens, to eggs, to pork, to dairy products, using marketing boards and quotas. 

However, if the threats being made to our way of life by the World Economic Forum (WEF) are to be believed, we ain’t seen nothin’ yet. This may be one of the last years in which the vestiges of capitalism are even able to put a decent Thanksgiving meal on our tables, or keep us warm while we eat it. 

World Economic Forum video

You’ve probably seen the notorious (WEF) video that’s been circulating for the past year or so. It predicts that by 2030, “you’ll own nothing, and you’ll be happy.” It adds, “You’ll eat much less meat…an occasional treat, not a staple.” 

Then it predicts international carbon emission policies “will help make fossil fuels history” without specifying what, if anything, will take up the slack for home heating in cold countries like ours. Nor does the WEF mention the elimination of fossil fuels from the marketplace would drive thousands of Canadian workers into unemployment and thousands of families into poverty. 

The supermarkets and farmers’ markets are still full this year, but cracks in the supply chains are threatening to rupture into gaping holes. You simply can’t close meat packing plants and factories, force almost everyone to stay home for weeks on end, and flush agricultural reservoir water into the ocean without causing significant disruption to the system. 

Container ships continue to pile up on North America’s west coast, laden with the parts that farmers, factories and truckers need to keep their equipment running. The more things break down, the less food will be produced, and the higher the price will be for what remains. 

During the Great Toilet Paper Scare of 2020, the mere rumour of a shortage made supplies vanish from store shelves and caused fist-fights to break out in store parking lots. Imagine that happening with meat, vegetables, fruit, nuts, and myriad other products. It won’t be pretty. 

Christian Westbrook, also known as the “Ice Age Farmer,” chronicles the economic idiocies inflicted on would-be producers by governments around the world, and the disastrous results these actions are having on food supplies. His information, drawn from mainstream news sources such as Bloomberg, The Economist, and UK newspapers such as The Daily Mail and The Guardian, is depressingly credible, but highly recommended. His Telegram channel contains a long litany of obvious economic errors that governments in free societies should never make. Nevertheless, they’re making these errors every day, impelled by the WEF’s openly socialist agenda. We will soon be feeling the pain — maybe as soon as next year. 

As Thanksgiving 2021 approaches, several provincial governments have announced special lockdowns to keep people from enjoying each other’s company on what is normally a family-oriented weekend. 

Alberta, for instance, is limiting indoor social gatherings to “two households (yours plus one other) up to a maximum of 10 vaccine-eligible, vaccinated people [with] no restrictions on children under 12.” However, unvaccinated people are not permitted to attend indoor social gatherings at all. Legally, they are required to spend Thanksgiving in their own household, alone in many cases. Outdoor gathering limits have been reduced to 20 people from the former limit of 200. 

New Brunswick has made the even more draconian decree that indoor gatherings will be limited to the members of a single household, regardless of vaccination status.  

I shake my head in bewilderment every time provincial premiers or their underlings announce restrictions like this with a straight face. The limits they impose appear to be completely arbitrary. There have been no placebo-controlled, double-blind studies showing that viruses don’t spread when gatherings are limited to 10 people, but spread like wildfire if an eleventh person enters the room. Likewise, there are no studies showing that it’s more dangerous to have company for dinner in New Brunswick than in Alberta. 

They never provide any persuasive data or calculations justifying their decrees, and indeed they can’t, for the reason I’ve already mentioned. 

This is clearly not about protecting people from a virus. After all, weren’t the vaccines supposed to do that? If they really worked as well as advertised, there should be no limits on the gatherings of the vaxxed. 

This is about training people to unquestioningly obey bizarre government orders — the same kind of orders that are rapidly wrecking our economy. 

So this year, no matter how many people are gathered around your Thanksgiving table, do give thanks to the vestiges of capitalism that have put the food on your table. Take lots of pictures, store up your memories, and think about how to prepare for the coming bad years when there’ll be little capitalism left to thank, and a lot less food in the stores. 

Karen Selick is a Columnist for the Western Standard

Karen Selick is a Columnist for the Western Standard. She has previously written for the original Western Standard, the National Post, and Canadian Lawyer Magazine. She is the former Litigation Lawyer of the Canadian Constitution Foundation and is the owner of KeenEyesEditing.ca. You can see her videos at https://www.bitchute.com/channel/SuoLpS8cVejQ/

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  1. Kieran

    October 10, 2021 at 5:34 pm

    The word “capitalism” in that meaning was invented by socialists as a scapegoat for their political propaganda. Probably you wanted to say market economy. Instead of “capitalism” I personally prefer to use either “modern economic system” (modern means since the Industrial Revolution) or “economy of innovations” (because innovations is that may give you an advantage, not your bloodline or place of birth alone). If one looks in this view it becomes obvious that what the leftists want to create is a Medieval world with it’s estates (call this group politics), and without individual rights and freedoms on the one hand and real progress (not that perverted meaning it has now) – on another hand. Thank you for sharing your thoughts anyway.

  2. mm

    Karen Selick

    October 9, 2021 at 11:35 am

    Ice Age Farmer is one of my favourite sites. He really delivers useful information, clearly and concisely.

  3. Dennis

    October 9, 2021 at 7:04 am

    JGL, well said but I don’t know how to get the Sheeple to see they’ve been had. The Good Germans of the 1940’s

  4. Jerry Terpstra

    October 8, 2021 at 3:49 pm

    Im afraid we are doomed. So many have followed and bent down to the allusion that what they were told had to be right. And no one or no organization would tell them a lie, that now they are in so deep bringing themselves to admit they screwed up is to hard a pill to swallow.

    Big pharma and the vangaurd group win again.

  5. John Lankers

    October 8, 2021 at 12:52 pm

    Makes you wonder why the land border between the US and Canada is closed but not between the US and Mexico.

  6. K

    October 8, 2021 at 11:52 am

    “This is about training people to unquestioningly obey bizarre government orders — the same kind of orders that are rapidly wrecking our economy.”


    Amen to that. And props for listing Ice Age Farmer in your article!

  7. jgl

    October 8, 2021 at 11:51 am

    How in the name of God are we allowing these few tyrants to destroy our lives. Who are these people?
    And what is wrong with the masses that follow them? Does freedom really mean nothing to so many?
    Are people really so fearful that they refuse to see the truth. Refuse to listen to their own senses that warns them something is terribly wrong.
    Wake up people before it’s too late. Or are we just doomed?

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LANDAU: Ontario Human Rights Commission seeks to pre-ban ‘offensive’ statues and street names

We should be alarmed at how some human rights bodies have strayed into the weeds in recent years, not driven by their mandates, but swayed by prevailing and contemporary political sentiments.




The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) has announced it is in the process of developing “a new policy statement on the discriminatory display of names, words and images, and wants to hear from the public about this quickly-evolving issue.”

The OHRC is contemplating the expansion of “human rights” violations to include such names as “Sir John A. Macdonald,” “Sir Egerton Ryerson,” for example, because these names might offend or trigger some people. Controversy around these historical figures from two centuries ago is ironically “quickly evolving.”

I’ve re-read all 30 articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) – drafted by McGill Law Professor John Peters Humphrey in 1948 — upon which most human rights commissions are founded. There is no human right for protection against being offended. If there was, rappers like Cardi B — or almost any rappers for that matter — wouldn’t have careers. Should freedom of speech and expression now be trumped by someone’s hurt feelings?  We agree tyrants need not be honoured, but do we need to go full-Jacobin and expurgate any evidence our offending founders and culture existed?

With this attempt by the OHRC to institutionalize “right thinking,” we are squarely in an era of revisionism. Is someone being “disturbed” by a team name or place or historical fact — in and of itself — proof of anything? In fact, what is the burden of proof? If human rights challenges will now be decided by what offends people, will we return to removing D.H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover and Arthur Miller’s Tropic of Cancer from all public view?

We should be alarmed at how some human rights bodies — not driven by their mandates, but swayed by prevailing and contemporary political sentiments — have strayed into the weeds in recent years. The OHRC is thrashing about seeking a purpose. It’s a classic case of organizational mandate creep.

Literature students have long known technical and stylistic brilliance are not always accompanied by opinions we respect. Poet Ezra Pound was an admirer of fascists. Talented writers Yevgeny Yevtushenko and Bertolt Brecht were mouthpieces for totalitarian communism. Wunderkind record producer Phil Spector was a convicted murderer and wife beater. The personal lives of Woody Allen, Roman Polanski, and Pablo Picasso offend many, for good reason. Even such historic luminaries as Winston Churchill, Mohandas K. Gandhi, biblical King David all had spotty records as paragons of virtue. Do we cancel them all?

You can’t whitewash or cleanse history. There are going to be streets and buildings and institutions named after people whose behaviour and opinions may offend some among us. Censuring their mention is not how you defend or advance human rights.

Meddling human rights commissions have become the land of groupthink. Tearing down statues and changing street names is no answer. We cannot replace the ‘N-word’ with the word “slave.” In fact, we need that word as a record, in the mouths of haters, and in the history books to remember its dehumanizing intention. 

The answer may be to erect more statues and name public places after others.  Until September 2021, there was no US statue of Nat Turner, the brave leader of the first slave uprising. How about more statues of Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglass, W.E.B. Du Bois, or the three brave women on whom the film Hidden Figures was based? Why not celebrate with more projects like the Crazy Horse Monument in South Dakota? Or Windsor Ontario’s joint monument to War of 1812 leaders Tecumseh and Brock. Manitoba is considering a monument to Chief Peguis. In a Saskatoon park, Métis hero Gabriel Dumont is honoured.

Forget censorship. This is how you honour and reflect history accurately.

Landau is a contributor to the Western Standard

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SLOBODIAN: The insansity of families being asked to care for seniors in Manitoba LTC

Clean? What does that mean? Clean their rooms? Clean them? Surely, these seniors wouldn’t be stripped of dignity having family members give them the widely practiced standard one — yes only one — bath per week. 




Planning to ensure there’ll be enough staff on shift at the lodge to help grandma dress in the morning or dip her dentures in Polident for a night-time soak seems kind of important.

It’s not like Monday’s mandatory COVID-19 vaccination and testing deadline for frontline workers in Manitoba arrives as a colossal shock.

Yet two Manitoba personal care homes seem to have suddenly realized a staff shortage, created by employees exercising their right to opt-out of the requirements, might occur. How many? They probably know by now but claim they’re not quite sure.

They scrambled to alert family members of a worst-case scenario contingency plan to care for their elderly loved ones. 

It’s them. Family members are the contingency plan. They’ll likely be called upon to step up this week and do the work they’re paying the province to do. 

Family members only found this out in a letter sent October 13.

Cleaning grandma’s teeth — be it brushing or soaking — would hardly be the only caregiving task at Salem Home in Winkler and Taber Home in Morden. Volunteers will be asked to pitch in to do laundry, plan entertainment activities, feed, dress and clean residents.

Clean? What does that mean? Clean their rooms? Clean them? Surely, these seniors wouldn’t be stripped of dignity having family members give them the widely practiced standard one — yes only one — bath per week. 

The alternative to volunteering at the facilities? Family might be asked to take seniors off the home’s hands.

“If we do not have staff, we may have to go one step further and ask that you would take your loved one home to look after them,” says the letter.

Public health orders dictate that as of October 18 unvaccinated staff are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result 48 hours prior to each shift. Officials are concerned some workers will refuse the test.

Salem Home, in the Southern Health Region, is in an area with the province’s lowest vaccination rates. The health districts of Winkler and nearby Stanley have rates of almost 43% and 25% respectively.

The region, under more restrictions than elsewhere in the province, claims to have a high number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. Last month there was a COVID-19 “outbreak” at Salem — two residents tested positive — and isolation was mandated even though vaccinated visitors were allowed in.

Despite all this, health officials think the solution to staff shortages is a parade of volunteers — even vaccinated volunteers pose a risk — traipsing in. 

Or, as an alternative, shove vulnerable residents out into the community.

That’s insanity.

Manitoba’s Health Minister Audrey Gordon couldn’t provide the number of unvaccinated health care workers. She met with health representatives in the region Friday to discuss other contingency plans.

Think about that. Friday. How long has this mandated vaccination deadline been anticipated?

Seniors shouldn’t be an afterthought.

Deploying staff on standby from elsewhere is one Hail Mary someone pitched. From where exactly? These two homes won’t be the only ones left short-staffed. 

To be fair, Gordon was left with the train wreck that unfolded under the watch of the previous health minister Heather Stefanson, who bailed to run for leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of Manitoba. The vote is October 30.

But back to what is being asked of families.

They have placed fragile senior family members in homes to be cared for by trained professionals. Care and accommodation are not free. They pay for it. Handsomely.

Many of these family members are seniors themselves, also fragile and struggling with health issues. 

What stress that ridiculous letter must place on many of them.

And what about family members who threw dad or Uncle Bob in a home and forget to visit? Oh sure, they’ll get right on that volunteer gig.

One certainly feels sympathy for health care workers in senior’s facilities who will carry extra workloads on top of already heavy workloads. These facilities are rarely adequately staffed.

One almost feels sympathy for health officials who have been at the mercy of, and struggling though, provincial planning that has proven erratic and abysmal.

Until then one of them proposes this as a contingency plan…

“We’re looking at things as simple as our menus and ramping down some of our menus, so they are easier recipes to produce,” Jane Curtis, CEO of the Southern Regional Health Authority, told CTV News.

What exactly does that mean? Mealtime is one of few highlights in the day at the lodge. Residents don’t like change. 

Don’t mess with their meals. Get in there and cook them yourself if you must!

Seniors deserve the best. The best! Yet it seems their care might be a casualty in this COVID-19 mess the province created.

Is it because they are the last to complain? Or are so fragile, they can’t?

Slobodian is the Senior Manitoba Columnist for the Western Standard

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WAGNER: Isabel Paterson – Alberta’s link to the founding of libertarianism

It’s possible — even likely — that her political views took shape while she lived here.




Three women are often credited with laying the foundations for the modern libertarian movement: the well-known philosopher and author Ayn Rand, Rose Wilder Lane — daughter of Laura Ingalls of Little House on the Prairie fame — and Isabel Paterson, the author of the book The God of the Machine, one of the founding texts of libertarianism.

What is notable from an Alberta perspective is Isabel Paterson — although born in Ontario — was raised in southern Alberta. She is a powerful Alberta link to the origin of libertarianism.

Paterson’s The God of the Machine was republished by Transaction Publishers in 1993, and it contains a new introduction by Stephen Cox, a literature professor at the University of California, San Diego. Cox’s introduction provides a brief biography of Paterson that highlights her contribution to the modern libertarian and conservative movements.

Paterson was born Isabel Bowler on Manitoulin Island in Ontario in 1886. While still very young, her family moved to southern Alberta where she grew up on a cattle ranch. In her late teens, she moved to Calgary where she worked at various odd jobs and eventually became a secretary for lawyer R. B. Bennett who would later become prime minister of Canada. Bennett saw potential in Bowler and offered to have her article as a law student in his office, but she declined.

She married Kenneth Birrell Paterson in Calgary in 1910. It was a short-lived marriage, but she nevertheless kept his surname. During the 1910s she moved a number of times to different cities, mostly in the United States, writing for a number of periodicals. She also began to write novels. Her first, The Shadow Riders, appeared in 1916. The story is set in Alberta and involves intrigue between businessmen and government.

Paterson became the literary editor for the New York Herald Tribune in 1924 and remained there until 1949 when she was fired due to her political views. The Herald Tribune was a prestigious periodical with a national circulation, and due to her position there, Paterson became a well-known and influential writer.

It was during this period that she became friends with Ayn Rand, who Cox describes as Paterson’s “protégé.” Indeed, Cox writes that Paterson “exerted a substantial effect on the individualist philosophy that Rand was evolving; no one else, certainly, had so great an influence on it as Paterson.”

When Rand wrote The Fountainhead, a work of philosophical fiction, Paterson used her column to promote it. Eventually, however, Paterson and Rand fell out. As William F. Buckley later remarked, “Paterson fought over principles; and she had a lot of principles to fight over.”

Paterson’s greatest work, The God of the Machine, was published in 1943. Cox writes that it emphasizes two principles: “an ethical and economic individualism based on the concept of inherent rights, including property rights; and the institutional complement of individualism, limited government.”

Cox further explains that the “individual’s right, in Paterson’s terms, is the right to be left alone, to develop in his or her own way; government should act to protect this right, not to pursue its own schemes of social betterment.” That’s a message that needs to be heard again.

Unlike a great many other journalists of her time, Paterson was not enthralled by the Soviet Union. While many viewed communism as the wave of the future, she wanted people to know that the communists were using starvation and slavery to advance their self-proclaimed  “humanitarian” goals.

As Cox notes, Paterson rightly believed that the “real danger to liberty and prosperity is intellectual, not military.” For this reason, K-12 education is a key battleground for the future, and Paterson forcefully opposed public (i.e., government) schooling which she considered to be “a system of state compulsion.”

In the end, The God of the Machine “made a significant contribution to a significant group of people, an isolated band of intellectuals, far outside the mainstream, who were seeking alternatives to collectivist ideals.”

Albert Jay Nock, one of the best-known early twentieth century individualists, stated The God of the Machine and Rose Wilder Lane’s The Discovery of Freedom (also published in 1943), were “the only intelligible books on the philosophy of individualism that have been written in America this century.”

When William F. Buckley founded National Review in 1955 — the flagship magazine of modern conservatism — he eagerly pursued Paterson to write for it. She did for a few years before falling out with Buckley.

The point, though, is that one of the founding intellectuals of the libertarian and conservative movements grew up in Alberta. It’s possible — even likely — her political views took shape while she lived here. No doubt her philosophy would still find wide appeal with many people in the province, especially readers of the Western Standard. Perhaps a new generation of Albertans will read The God of the Machine and benefit from its advocacy for individualism and limited government.

Wagner is a Western Standard columnist

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