Wednesday, February 08, 2023

The Things That Make Us Stupider...


MayTheFourthBeWithYou
DimensionVille


From Evan Scrimshaw's latest:

...(W)e have too many people who aren’t working at any form of singular purpose – we have too many reporters working as pundits, too many pundits pretending to be forecasters, and too many people who end up not being particularly good at either. What we need is a media that covers electoral impacts and policy impacts separately, and doesn’t treat “this is bad but voters don’t care” as salient analysis. Those are two separate and distinct thoughts that deserve to be treated separately, but too much of our media doesn’t.

 And it’s making us all stupider...


I think Mr. Scrimshaw has a point.

After all, how many times have you read/heard/seen a piece wherein the pundit tells you that a policy proposal by a local/provincial/national government is important and in the next breath tells you that the policy proposal is irrelevant because a significant chunk of the public doesn't like the sounds of said policy.

As a result of this behaviour, which is repeated over and over and over again, we very often do not do those things that will help us all in the future because of some stupid poll taken today.

Which, of course, really is stupid.


_______
Somebody really ought to write a sci-fi story about a sharp young kid who builds a time machine, not to travel forward to meet the Eloi or scribble down winning lottery ticket numbers, but instead to come back with poll numbers from the future that make it clear that 98% of the public in 2062 loves the fact that the truly universal basic income plan implemented by prime minister Autumn Peltier in the spring of 2058 almost completely eliminated poverty while it simultaneously boosted the sustainable GDP-free economy...Or some such thing.


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Tuesday, February 07, 2023

The Weakness Of The Democratic Party's Presidential Bench...


PoliticalPunditryIsNotProFootball
StateOfTheUnionVille


I usually have a lot of time for the writing of Michelle Goldberg, who is a regular OpEd columnist for the New York Times.

Her latest piece, published in the lead-up to this evening's 'State of the Union' address first extolls the numerous successes of the current US'ian president, Joe Biden:

...(Biden's) presided over record job creation and the lowest unemployment rate in over 50 years. Whereas Donald Trump’s infrastructure weeks were a running joke, Biden signed the largest infusion of federal funds into infrastructure in more than a decade. His Inflation Reduction Act made a historic investment in clean energy; the head of the International Energy Agency called it the most important climate action since the 2015 Paris climate accord. (And incidentally, inflation is finally coming down.) Biden rallied Western nations to support Ukraine against Russia’s imperialist invasion and ended America’s long, fruitless war in Afghanistan, albeit with an ugly and ignominious exit. His administration capped insulin prices for seniors, codified federal recognition of gay marriage and shot down that spy balloon everyone was freaking out about. He’s on track to appoint more federal judges than Trump...

 {snip}

 ...In other words, Biden has been a great president. He’s made good on an uncommon number of campaign promises. He should be celebrated on Tuesday...


Ms. Goldberg then pivots to the latest obsession of the chattering classes of the Acela corridor:

...Biden has been a great president. He’s made good on an uncommon number of campaign promises. He should be celebrated on Tuesday. But he should not run again...

And what, you might be wondering, will the Democrats do if Mr. Biden is jettisoned?

Well, according to Ms. Goldberg, all will be fine given that the party has a deep bench that will serve up a shiny new quarterback to lead them to promised land in 2024:

...Democrats have a deep bench, including politicians who’ve won in important purple states, like Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan and Senator Raphael Warnock of Georgia. Biden said he wanted to be a bridge to the next generation of Democrats. There are quite a few promising people qualified to cross it. A primary will give Democrats the chance to find the one who is suited for this moment...


Hmmm....

Like many of you, I watched third string quarterback Brock Purdy come off the bench and almost lead the San Francisco 49'ers to the promised land before his arm was turned to tunafish by a blitzing Philadelphia Eagles linebacker named Hasson Reddick.

And here's the thing.

Neither Gretchen Whitmer nor Raphael Warnock is Brock Purdy, even if they suddenly grow an extra ten or twelve arms, in the face of blitzing neandercons and vituperative faux media outlet bleatings in a general US'ian presidential election.

In other words, the real issue for the Democrats is precisely their lack of bench depth, which is why the party's power brokers, which included Barack Obama,  got together and anointed Mr. Biden as their candidate in the first place back in the spring of 2020.

OK?


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Monday, February 06, 2023

Will There Soon Be A Run On DVD Players?


TurnOutTheStreamingLights
TheParty'sOverVille


Believe it or not, I try my best to not always be the curmudgeonly old guy with the youths.

However, given my day job, that can be pretty hard sometimes. As in, 'When I was a gradual student we made our own media from scratch!' (or, at the very least, from powder).

Anyway...

This past holiday season I was only half-joking when I mentioned to our grown-up kids, nieces, nephews and their various and assorted sundry significant others that I just might be buying them DVD players for Christmas next year.

What was my reasoning?

Well, as the streaming services fragment so that you now need at least half-a-dozen subscriptions, or more (especially if you want event programming, like sports), the costs for those without cable cords are going to get so exorbitant that I reckon the kids will soon be scouring bargain bins for entire DVD seasons of 'Friends' or 'The Office' so that they can get their post-syndication apocalypse fix at a reasonable price.

And now, well, there is the following, which is likely to ratchet up the cost of plugging into a screaming service for all kinds of kinda/sorta still at home, but actually/really pretty much moved out,  twenty-somethings:

After months of warning subscribers that anti-password sharing measures were coming to Netflix, the company appears to be finally set to unleash them.

Netflix has estimated that over 100 million users worldwide are using the service through the login credentials of someone else. It hopes that by putting an end to account sharing, it will bring a new infusion of revenue to the company...


Gosh.

I wonder if the player in our basement even works anymore?


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Only the olds, especially those with a penchant for half-time highlights and/or dandies on a Monday Night, will connect the image and sub-header to this one...


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Sunday, February 05, 2023

Mr. Henley's Opus.


VoicesDownThe
CorridorVille


Back in the days of yore (i.e. when the olds were young), we used to pore over album gatefolds like the one pictured above.

Why?

Because, while there was Rolling Stone, Creem, Circus and, in a pinch, Hit Parader, there were no interwebs where you could find out pretty much anything about any album or band like, say,  this.

****

Hotel California was released in late 1976.

In the summer of 1977 I worked at a local hardware store that was less then two blocks away from my house which meant that I could saunter home for lunch.

During one of those lunch times I distinctly remember putting on headphones, lying on the couch, and listening to this album full blast.

While the title track was the big hit off the album at the time, I was particularly struck by 'The Last Resort' which Glen Frey later called 'Mr. Henley's Opus' given that it included lines like:

...Some rich men came and raped the land. Nobody caught 'em...


Of course, Don Henley would soon become a very rich man himself.

And while Henley has often supported environmental causes and the rights of his fellow musicians over the years, he has also railed against, and shut down, bootlegs and amateur covers of his and his bandmates' songs on the Youtubes.

Thank the spaghetti monster this cover by my current favourite internet kids still stands (so far)...


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OMG!, 3rd Edition...Who Knew What, When?

LongFormJournalism?
WeDon'tNeedNoStinkingLongFormJournalism!Ville


Back when the Overstory Media Group first fired the core staff at its flagship Capital Daily outlet (i.e. the one that had actually been making money) last week, one of the company's principals, former Daily Hive owner Farhan Mohamed, unequivocally stated that he did NOT know that employees were planning to unionize:




That was early in the morning of Thursday February 2nd.

However, in a Tyee story published the next day, Friday February 3rd, Mr. Mohammed told Zak Vescera something very different:

...Mohamed confirmed to The Tyee that he had been aware of the union drive, though the company has denied it played any role in the cuts...


Why does this matter?

Because, in my opinion, the timing of the firings, which occurred the day before the announcement of the unionization drive makes it hard not to wonder if the former was designed to kibosh the latter, especially given the following, which was reported by Ethan Cox writing for Ricochet:

...OMG sources confirmed to Ricochet that three of the four fired employees (at Capital Daily) were lead organizers with the union effort...


Further on the timing point...

The other OMG principal, deep-pocketed tech guy (i.e. not the former BCL party leader*) Andrew Wilkinson, stated, also early in the morning of Thursday February 2nd, that he knew about the unionization drive but claimed that it would have been pretty dumb of them to fire folks given that the drive went forward the next day, regardless:



Which is all fine and good, as far deflector spike-spin attempts go.

But ask yourself the following...

What would the reaction have been if the firings had occurred the day AFTER the unionization announcement?


_____
OMG! 1st and 2nd editions are here and here.
*Thanks to longtime reader NVG for clearing that up.
As for that deflector spike-spin strategy thingee...It's now almost a full week since the firings and still not a peep out of the corpMedia, at least according to today's  Googleplex...



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Friday, February 03, 2023

Meanwhile In America...Won't Someone Please Think Of The...


...Ancestors?

From Tierney Sneed of CNN:

A federal law that prohibits people subject to domestic violence restraining orders from possessing firearms is unconstitutional, a conservative-leaning appeals court ruled Thursday.

The ruling is the latest significant decision dismantling a gun restriction in the wake of the Supreme Court’s expansion of Second Amendment rights last year in the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen decision.

The 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals said that the federal law targeting those believed to pose a domestic violence threat could not stand under the Bruen test, which requires that gun laws have a historical analogy to the firearm regulations in place at the time of the Constitution’s framing.

Through that lens, we conclude that (the law’s) ban on possession of firearms is an ‘outlier’ that our ancestors would never have accepted,” the 5th Circuit said...


As for those threatened by a firearm-fuelled escalation of domestic violence?

Well, it appears that it doesn't matter what they will or will not accept.

****

What's it all about this time Alfie?

Well, it's this Federalist Society's/current Supreme Court majority's obsession, developed as a way to suppress, and even reverse, all things progressive via 'Constitutional Originalism'.

Harry Litman, writing in the Atlantic, explains the origin story of this codswallop:

Originalism—the idea that the meaning of each provision of the United States Constitution becomes fixed at the time of its enactment—in its contemporary form traces back to the advocacy of a few conservative judges, most prominently Antonin Scalia, in the mid-1980s. At the time, it was a rebel yell. The few self-styled originalists were railing against a long line of judicial precedents, particularly a set of Warren Court rulings that they viewed as mere expressions of liberal policy preferences...

{snip}

...To understand what (Constitutional Originalism is) — and why it matters so much — begin with the two main defenses of originalism, as propounded by Scalia along with Justice William Rehnquist, Judge Robert Bork, and the core members of the then-fledgling Federalist Society (in the Reaganland-fuelled early 1980's when this was all conjured/invented). The first was the concept’s supposed determinacy. Scalia savaged various theories of what he termed the “living Constitution” as hopelessly open-ended and unpredictable. Discerning the Constitution’s original meaning, by contrast, was fundamentally a down-the-middle judicial task.

The second tenet was originalism’s legitimacy—and the illegitimacy of a “living Constitution”—as an essential corollary to the very idea of a written constitution. The point of writing the Constitution down, originalists argued, was to fix its meaning. Any monkeying with meaning thereafter is the province of the legislative branch or the popular will, and the courts’ job is to set them straight...


Sometimes one has to wonder if these fine folks will only be happy when absolutely no one but they and theirs get to do the living and dying in their town.

The town they and theirs have so hard to turn from Bedford Falls into Pottersville.

Or some such thing.



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Thursday, February 02, 2023

OMG, Revisited...You Keep Using That Number.


IDoNotThinkItMeansWhatYouThinksItMeans,And...
TwoPlusTwoDoesNotEqualFiveVille


Yesterday, we noted that the Overstory Media Group (OMG), which is run by two fine fellows named Farhan Mohamed and Andrew Wilkinson, fired the reporting and editorial core of their flagship outlet, the Capital Daily (Victoria), earlier this week.

In that post we also wondered about the timing of the firings given that they occurred the day before it was announced that the majority of OMG employees had decided to unionize.

Well, now, writing in Ricochet, Ethan Cox notes that:

...OMG sources confirmed to Ricochet that three of the four fired employees were lead organizers with the union effort...

****

Earlier today, on the Twittmachine,  Mr. Mohamed wrote that he knew nothing of the unionization drive while Mr. Wilkinson indicated that he had known about the drive for months but denied that the firings had anything to do with it whatsoever:



Which, of course, is an interesting contradiction in and of itself from the two fine fellows running the company.

As for the future of Capital Daily, Mr. Wilkinson keeps saying, including to at least one irate subscriber, that everything is going to be just fine because five of nine employees are still working for the outlet:



Except, according to one of the employees that is still there, that is not the case from a daily operations point of view:



Stay tuned...


_____
And while independent media are now starting to pay attention to the story we still note the absence of corpMedia coverage...
As for the subheader and image at the top of the post... We are in no way implying that either principal at OMG bears any resemblance whatsoever to either Montoya or Vezzini...However, we really do wonder if 'five' means what Mr. Wilkinson says it means...


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Are We Moving From Vaccine Mandates Toward Luxury Vaccines?


First there was the news of the ratcheting up of COVID vaccine prices that is very likely on the way:

...Moderna’s announcement early this month that it would consider a price hike on the vaccine was inevitable. Pfizer and BioNTech had made a similar announcement last October. But Moderna’s proposed quadrupling of the price—from the current $26 per dose to between $110 and $130 per dose—is a stunning 4,000 percent increase from its manufacturing cost of $2.85 per dose...


Now, word has come, from the UK at least (so far?), that getting a COVID vaccine on the public dime will soon get harder for large swaths of the population:

Booster jabs will no longer be available to healthy under-50s from February 12 - meaning Brits have just 12 days to book a slot.

Offers of first and second doses will also be withdrawn later this year...


Now, according to the UK's Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation this is all just part of moving from a collective  pandemic 'emergency' response to a pandemic 'recovery' response:

...As the transition continues away from a pandemic emergency response towards pandemic recovery, the JCVI has advised that the 2021 booster offer (third dose) for persons aged 16 to 49 years who are not in a clinical risk group should close in alignment with the close of the autumn 2022 booster vaccination campaign...


However...

As we pivot from one type of pandemic response to another it is also worth remembering, as we noted previously, that the rich (and/or Davos Man and Woman) are not like you and me.

OK?



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Wednesday, February 01, 2023

OMG!

Something'sHappeningHere
WhatItIsAin'tExactlyClear



I've been quite happily consuming what the Overstory Media Group (the real, actual acronym of the post title) have been dishing out around Greater Lotusland that last couple of years, especially the work of the folks at Capital City Daily.

But then, Monday, came the news of big layoffs that have essentially gutted the that specific outlet:

Overstory Media Group (OMG) has made another round of layoffs, focused on Victoria’s Capital Daily.

 Among those caught up in Monday’s job losses were managing editor Jimmy Thomson, who’d been with the digital publication since 2020; journalist and copy editor Jolene Rudisuela; and reporters Brishti Brasu and Shannon Waters...


Interestingly, the next day, Tuesday, came an announcement that many folks working for the company have decided to unionize:


The timing has some folks wondering, including at least one of the folks that was most recently let go from Capital City, if there was something pre-emptive in the timing of the layoffs...


_____
Interestingly,
the legacy corpMedia 'round here has pretty much ignored the story so far...Where's a younger (i.e. still employed) version of Rod Mickleburgh when you need him?...Looks like we'll have to wait for Jesse Brown and Co. to shake the trees to learn anything further...
Ear Worm in the Subheader?...This!...(written by Stephen Stills not about the recent events at a Canuckistanian newMedia start-up but rather about the so-called curfew/youth riots on the Sunset Strip more than fifty years ago...Oh, and just in case you were wondering, Sonny and Cher were both there, like, digging the scene man).



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New To The Blog Crawl...Cory Doctorow.

TheWordmanOf
OurDigitalAlcatrazVille


I have no idea why it took me so long to get Cory Doctorow's post-BoingBoing blog called 'Pluralistic' up on the crawl over there on the left sidebar (phone folks, you have to switch to the 'View web version' link at the bottom of the page to see that stuff).

Anyway...

It's there now and I, for one, look forward to perusing Doctorow's pretty much daily musings and link mining efforts.

Yesterday he had more, much more, on all that our federal government is paying those super fine folks like those from McKinsey and Co. to do and not do (and/or just do shabbily) so that our public service doesn't have to (and/or will no longer get to do):

...The Liberals have become embroiled in a series of scandals over the explosion of lucrative, secretive private contracts awarded to high-flying consultancy firms who charge hundreds of times more than public sector employees to do laughably bad work.

 Front and centre in the scandal, is, of course, McKinsey, consligieri to opioid barons, murdering Saudi princes, and other unsavoury types. McKinsey was brought in to "consult" on strategy for the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), a Crown corporation that gives loans to Canadian businesses.

 While there, McKinsey performed as per usual, veering from the farcical to the grotesquely wasteful. Most visible was the decision to spend $320,000 on a livecast fireside chat between BDC president Isabelle Hudon and a former Muchmusic VJ that was transmitted to all BDC employees, which featured Hudon and the host discussing a shopping trip they'd taken together in Paris...

{snip}

...After campaigning on a promise to reduce outside consultancy, the Trudeau administration increased consultant spending by 40%, to $11.8 billion. This shadow civil service is not just more expensive and less competent that the real civil service – it is also far more opaque, able to fend off open records requests with vague gestures towards "trade secrecy."...



Imagine that!


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Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Virtute The Cat Explains Her Departure (JK Sampson-Fellows Cover)

LetUsRestHereLikeWeUsedTo
InALineOfLateAfternoonSunVille


John K. (then just) Sampson wrote a song cycle about/by/for a cat named Virtute over thirteen long years.

Personally, I think it is one of the greatest musical achievements, ever, by anyone who is (or once was) Canadian.

Here's my slightly warbly version of the second, most heartbreaking, tune...

______
Imagine,
if you will, how flummoxed this listener was to learn that the Sampson-Fellows family doesn't even own a cat...

Image at the top of the post...Our cat, not named Virtute, getting ready for a late afternoon/setting sun ride on the ferry...


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Monday, January 30, 2023

If You Think Your Internet and Cellular Bills Are Big Now...

Third
ConclusionVille



From Konrad Yakabuski, writing in the Globe and Mail last Friday:

There are two main conclusions to be drawn from this week’s Federal Court of Appeal decision rejecting the Competition Bureau’s request to block Rogers Communications’ takeover of Shaw Communications. Neither of them makes Canada look good.

The first is that the federal Competition Act is a toothless international embarrassment, wholly incapable of stopping corporate concentration in sectors that are critical to productivity growth in the Canadian economy.

The second is that the way this country regulates telecommunications puts way too much emphasis on stability and too little on innovation...


Of course, there is a third conclusion, long ago drawn.

Which is that you and I will pay more.

A whole lot more.

As for improvements in service and innovation driven by competition?

Well...



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Sunday, January 29, 2023

That Person Who Changes Your Life.


LookingDownTheBarrelOf
TheMicroscopeVille


For the last thirty years I've made my living growing microscopic clumps of cells called spheroids to help various folks test the function of genetic mutations that may or may not play a role in turning those cells cancerous.

A good example of the kind of work we do with those spheroids these days can be found here.

But it wasn't always that way.

****

Back when I was an undergrad (i.e. in the ancient times), I was lucky enough to take a course on the microscopic form and function of human tissues with a grizzled old developmental biologist named Tom Algard.

Algard was the type of guy who used to duck out of exams to practice his fly casting technique where the grass meets the woods outside the Cunningham building at UVIC. When I approached Algard to ask him for advice about graduate school he said the best thing I could do was to contact people whose papers I admired and propose the next experiments.

I took Dr. Algard's advice to heart, read a bunch of papers, formulated scads of experiments, and sent out a handful of letters.

Two people responded. 

One was a very nice fellow at Dalhousie who worked on cranio-facial development. The other was a woman at UBC who mostly cultured cervical and ovarian cells in an effort to determine the mechanisms responsible for transforming them into tumour cells. 

Dr. Nelly Auersperg also worked on more esoteric projects at the time, one of which resulted in a paper titled "Morphological and functional differentiation of Kirsten murine sarcoma virus-transformed rat adrenocortical cell lines" that was published in 1981. That paper, and the idea that the state of a cell in a tissue might influence the type of tumour it gave rise to, fascinated me. As a result, I spent the next six years working in Nelly's lab isolating sub-populations of adrenortical cells, characterizing them, transforming them with the K-Ras oncogene, and figuring out that the oncogene had very different effects on those cells as they moved from their more primitive stem state to their fully functional state.

Truth be told, separate from all high faulting' science stuff, I knew I was hooked on the entire enterprise the first time I isolated the cells, got them to stick to the bottom of the culture dish, and looked down the barrel of the microscope to see them alive and happy, filled to bursting with bright little droplets of lipid that contain the raw material they use to produce their functional product - steroid hormones (see image at the top of the post).

Working with Nelly changed my life. She was always curious, always supportive, and she always encouraged those who were lucky enough to train with her to follow their own path as long as that path was hacked out of the unknown with tools built from data of rigour.

****

Late last fall,  C. and I had lunch with Nelly with one of her old technicians. We mostly talked about our kids and her grand kids (and their kids). And then, for just a few quick minutes, the conversation turned to one of my lab's recent papers. Just like in the old days Nelly had questions, questions that got right to the heart of the matter and tested the rigour of our conclusions. To keep from boring everyone else at the table to death, Nelly and I agreed that we would get together later, separately, to talk about things in detail. Unfortunately, that conversation never happened.

Two weeks ago, Nelly passed away at the age of 94.

As one of her colleagues told me recently, Dr. Nelly Auersperg was a giant in the field. However, science was only one part of her amazing life. 

You can read more about that life...Here  and ...Here.


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Friday, January 27, 2023

The Cost Of Misinformation, COVID-19 Edition.


From the recently released Council of Canadian Academies report on healthcare misinformation:

...If those who reported believing COVID-19 is a hoax were vaccinated when they became eligible, over 2.3 million additional people in Canada would have been vaccinated, resulting in roughly 198,000 fewer cases, 13,000 fewer hospitalizations, and 2,800 fewer deaths from COVID-19 between March 1 and November 30, 2021...


Gosh.

With all the bleating and impugning that has gone since the fall of 2021, one can only wonder what the number of 'Hoaxians' among us would be now.



____
Link to the report's executive summary is...Here.
Link to a Postmedia report on the report is...Here.
Members of the panel that generated the report can be found...Here (scroll down and click on 'view full expert panel').


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Thursday, January 26, 2023

All Your Immigrations Are Us.

NoManBornWithALivingSoul
WorkingForTheClampdownVille


We recently noted that the international men and women of mystery who make up the consulting firm McKinsey and Company received 100 million dollars from the Trudeau government over the past five years or so, a considerable chunk of it for their work on immigration issues.

Well.

As reader Graham noted, it turns out that these same fine folks also worked for another federal government on their immigration 'issues' as well...

The following is the lede of a piece written by Ian MacDougall that was jointly published ProPublica and the New York Times in 2019 with the apt title 'How McKinsey Helped The Trump Administration Detain and Deport Immigrants':

Just days after he took office in 2017, President Donald Trump set out to make good on his campaign pledge to halt illegal immigration. In a pair of executive orders, he ordered “all legally available resources” to be shifted to border detention facilities and called for hiring 10,000 new immigration officers.

The logistical challenges were daunting, but as luck would have it, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) already had a partner on its payroll: McKinsey & Company, an international consulting firm brought on under the Obama administration...


Interestingly, it wasn't long before the consulting company started to write its own ticket inside the Trump Administration's burgeoning immigration clampdown apparatus:

...(T)he consulting firm’s sway at ICE grew to the point that McKinsey’s staff even ghostwrote a government contracting document that defined the consulting team’s own responsibilities and justified the firm’s retention, a contract extension worth $2.2 million. “Can they do that?” an ICE official wrote to a contracting officer in May 2017.

The response reflects how deeply ICE had come to rely on McKinsey’s assistance. “Well it obviously isn’t ideal to have a contractor tell us what we want to ask them to do,” the contracting officer replied. But unless someone from the government could articulate the agency’s objectives, the officer added, “what other option is there?” ICE extended the contract...


And what kinds of things did the consultants do for Mr. Trump's clampdown on all immigration?

Well...

...The money-saving recommendations the consultants came up with made some career ICE staff uncomfortable. They proposed cuts in spending on food for migrants, as well as on medical care and supervision of detainees, according to interviews with people who worked on the project for both ICE and McKinsey and 1,500 pages of documents obtained from the agency after ProPublica filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act...

{snip}

...In what one former official described as “heated meetings” with McKinsey consultants, agency staff members questioned whether saving pennies on food and medical care for detainees justified the potential human cost.

But the consulting firm’s sway at ICE grew to the point that McKinsey’s staff even ghostwrote a government contracting document that defined the consulting team’s own responsibilities and justified the firm’s retention...


Gosh.

This sure sounds like the type of very, very, very fine folks we here in Canada would want to deal with our post-COVID and global hotspot-driven increase in immigration, visa and refugee requests in both a humane and expeditious manner.

After all, we've dealt with it all so well so far.

Not:

After applying for a tourist visa, a Nova Scotia woman is asking why she and her husband may have to wait a year for him to be approved to visit Canada.

 Mary Dahr looked up the timeline for the processing of a visitor visa for her husband, who is Cuban, two months ago. At that time, the estimated wait was 90 days.

 By the time Dahr went to put in an application, the wait had jumped to 209 days, and has since risen to a year, at 359 days.

It's an issue that continues to affect people across the country, as immigration applications of all kinds, including visitor visas, continue to be the subject of long delays...

 {snip}

...There are approximately 2.1 million applications awaiting decision by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), including close to 1.09 million that are considered "in backlog."

Betsy Kane, an immigration lawyer in Ottawa and co-founding member of the Canadian Immigration Lawyers Association (CILA), said the long processing times are a sign of a broken system.


"It's not normal to expect somebody to wait a year for a visitor visa," Kane said. "There's no excuse for that."...


Hmmmmm...

Maybe if we doubled down and threw another $100 million to the Clampdown Consultants we could get that backlog down to, say, 0.99 million.


_______
As you might expect,
the International Men and Women of Clampdown Consulting Mystery are nothing if not aggressive when it comes to P.R....As such, they pushed back, hard, against the original 2019 ProPublica/NYTimes piece...ProPublica pushed back even harder, receipts in fully in hand...
Earworm in sub-header?...This.


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