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Dispatch from Stabtown

Bat'lethEven as my first Post column of the week smashes through the Full Comment record book for hits, my distinctly better (but more parochial) second column, about a mayor's flirtation with knife control, is hitting the doorstep. (I had a hand in today's unsigned leader on the new Conservative anti-crime measures, too.)

Although my own mail has been strongly "pro" on the Tuesday column—which is prefaced by a warning that it should not be taken in strict seriousness, and which has attracted attention mostly for the weaker half of the argument—there have been a few minority reports from the blogosphere from baby boomers objecting that, as individuals, they darn well paid their own way, dadgummit. Some have even ventured to suggest that their generation has somehow prepaid for the future services ours will receive from the government. Since it is apparently not widely known, let me note that if you are 65 years old today, the entire net public debt of Canada when you were 20 was about $118 billion in today's money. The figure peaked in the mid-'90s (right around the Freedom 55 mark) at $750 billion. Those who somehow missed out on their fair share of the difference have my sympathies.


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Comments (8)


And yet, when I think of blades, I think of Saskatoon.

Garth Wood:

I think of Wesley Snipes.  I also think of him when I think of tax evasion.

Just sayin'.

Lord Bob:

Colby, I see what you're trying to do when you compare national debts pre- and post-baby boom, but I must disagree with your conclusion.

As we all know, when you go into debt to get something, you're basically getting it for free. It's the same reason so many of us take out mortgages we can't possibly afford so we can get big houses and purchase new 47-inch televisions and laptops on credit. If you don't have to pay for it up front, are you really paying for it at all?

Sincerely, a guy with $20,000 in student loans and no degree.

Regarding the knife column, I'm still reminded of the immortal words from Chris Rock in "There's No Sex (In the Champagne Room)" -- N-bomb and all:

"Don't go to parties with metal detectors

Sure it feels safe inside; but what about
all those niggaz waitin outside with guns?

They know you ain't got one.."


Hey, Colby, grats on making it onto Arts and Letters Daily with your Boomers screed!



A boomer who would like to point out that someday you'll be old too.

Garth Wood:

"...someday you'll be old too."

Er, not necessarily a foregone conclusion.  In University, I kept thinking all my friends and I would grow old together.  Several decades later, a lot of them are already dead.

Kinda depressing, that.


While most people in Britain would indeed agree with you on the impact (or lack of) that gun-control has on violence, they'd probably also agree with your comment that "Every time somebody gets pig-stuck in an alleyway here, several bystanders who might have been wounded in some Toronto-style shootout have implicitly been saved".

Knife crime's a real problem here, but the relatively few shootings we have almost inevitably end in the accidental shooting of a child, or trainee nurse, or some other patently uninvolved party.


Personally if I had a choice in the matter I would prefer getting shot over getting stabbed! Getting stabbed would hurt too much! :D


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