26 August 2010

Our Duty continues

I've been slogging away since the last post, writing and setting up the Our Duty campaign. I must have written boatloads of material in the past 48 hours if you count the email and about 9 versions of the petition. Speaking of which...


I'm glad to see the amount of media attention the veterans affairs issue is getting and that I'm not the only one pissed about this. The politicans are playing their usual games right now: Opposition trying to score points, Harper off in the Arctic, but I don't think they are really grasping how deeply angry we citizens are. It's kinda like we asked them to make Gramma's lunch and instead they locked up the food! Obviously, the veterans and military people are shouting, but the volume of the civilians is very high. If we can stay focused on the issue and not let the politicians turn this into politics, we may even be able to accomplish something.

24 August 2010

Our Duty

Our Duty on facebook

After getting very disturbed by the veterans' benefits story, I contacted the ombudsman, Colonel Pat Stogran. The result of several emails is that I have started a campaign to help sort this out.

Our Duty is based on a simple and clear thought. As Canadians, we request people to provide service in our military. This makes us, as Canadians, their employer, not the government. As their employer, we have a duty to provide benefits and pensions. For nearly 100 years, we have failed to do so. We have failed in our duty.

It doesn't take much research to find out how badly we have treated the women and men who serve us. Bring up any Canadian news story on veterans' benefits and read the reader comments. You will learn things that will make you want to scream: pensions short-changed and clawed back, soldiers denied treatment, amputees denied claims, the list goes on. First, you will be amazed, then angry. But if you really understand what we have allowed to happen, then you will be ashamed. And then furious beyond words. If you want to act, join the campaign by clicking the link above.

21 August 2010

We Stand of Guard for... Not Them.

CBC: The swelling anger at Veterans Affairs

This is a ridiculous situation. Forces pay itself is by no means great wages and the treatment of veterans is appalling. But this can by no means be laid at Harper's door, or the Conservatives, or the Liberals. This has been going on for far too long to point the finger at any single government or individual. Who is at fault? Us, the citizens of Canada.

We have decided to have an armed force. We have decided that our troops should be sent on missions. We have required of them that they put body and soul on the line, for us, for our country, and for others. We ask them to put others ahead of themselves, to follow orders, to keep peace, to wage war. We ask these men and women to sacrifice their families, their sanity, their bodies, that we can feel secure and proud. In return, we offer low wages, little support, and a cold shoulder. If we think of the soldiers at all, we regard them as being of low intelligence or freaks. After all, who else would willingly do such work?

We should be ashamed.

We should be ashamed of our ignorance, of our disregard for those who serve us, of our tolerence of their mistreatment. We should be ashamed that we buy a poppy in November and feel this is tribute. We should be ashamed that we are hypocrites: that we believe in peacekeeping but not the peacekeeper, in the wars but not the troops, in the aid for others but not for our own.

If we, as citizens, have any integrity then we, as a country must make amends. If we want and need troops then we must be willing to pay for them. We must demand any and all troops be paid well for their service, be treated well for their sacrifice, and be well cared for in their aftermaths. To do less, to accept less, is to lessen ourselves and our nation.

19 August 2010

Facebook My YouTube, Please! The New Author in New Media

Joe, I wish you all the best! If you got an advance, I hope you used it wisely and didn't waste it on liquor and women.

New technology has had little impact on the writing process - except for the ongoing fights with printers and wordprocessing software. All the change is on the delivery and marketing side. And that change is both rapid and slow, depending on where you stand. The direct to consumer model OR is following is perhaps too far ahead to be practical: consumers are not yet seeking books from publishers (this would be the slow part). My novel is not in stores (making sales low) but is on the etailers (where most of the sales have come in) and the publisher (no sales). Right now, the best shot at any sales is broad availability. Publisher direct isn't working (yet?) because readers are only looking at amazon. Even then, you have to market your butt off just to get readers to take a look, let alone scramble for their credit card.

The problem with being on the cutting edge is that you tend to bleed a lot.

All the Best,

Jeff Rose-Martland

author of Game Misconduct.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost