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Canadian Social Research Newsletter
November 30,  2008

Welcome to the weekly Canadian Social Research Newsletter,
a listing of the new links added to the Canadian Social Research Links website in the past week.

The e-mail version of this week's issue of the newsletter is going out to 1929 subscribers.

Scroll to the bottom of this newsletter to see some notes and a disclaimer.

IN THIS ISSUE:

Canadian content

1.What's New from Finance Canada:
--- Government of Canada Moves Quickly on Seniors’ Tax Relief and Other Outstanding Measures - November 28
--- Release of The Fiscal Monitor - November 27
--- Economic and Fiscal Statement 2008 - November 27

2. Hunger Count 2008 : A Comprehensive Report on Hunger and Food Bank Use in Canada (Food Banks Canada) - November 2008
3. You
can pay me now, or pay me later : The social cost of recessions / The shift in society's direction
4.
Reducing Gaps in Health: A Focus on Socio-Economic Status in Urban Canada (Canadian Institute for Health Information) - November 2008
5. What's New in The Daily (Statistics Canada):
--- Canada's balance of international payments, third quarter 2008 - November 28
--- Payroll employment, earnings and hours, September 2008
- November 28
--- Canadian Social Trends - November 26
***** Inuit in Canada: Selected findings of the 2006 Census
***** Selected findings of the Aboriginal Children’s Survey 2006: Family and Community
--- Employment Insurance, September 2008 -
November 25
--- The Canadian Labour Market at a Glance, 2007 - November 25
--- National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth: School achievement of nine-year-olds, 2006 - November 24
--- Farm income, 2007 - November 24
--- Farm cash receipts, January to September 2008- November 24
--- Perspectives on Labour and Income - November 2008 issue
***** Two featured articles:"Bridge employment" (or transition to retirement) and "Rural Commuting"
6. What's new from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (Toronto) - November 26

International  content

7. Poverty Dispatch: U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs (Institute for Research on Poverty - University of Wisconsin-Madison)
8. Australian Policy Online Weekly Briefing - selected recent content
9. CRINMAIL (November 2008) - (Child Rights Information Network - CRIN)

Have a great week!

Gilles Séguin
Canadian Social Research Links

http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net

E-mail:
gilseg@rogers.com


1. What's New from Finance Canada:
--- Government of Canada Moves Quickly on Seniors’ Tax Relief and Other Outstanding Measures - November 28
---
Release of The Fiscal Monitor - November 27
--- Economic and Fiscal Statement 2008 - November 27

New from Finance Canada:

Government of Canada Moves Quickly on Seniors’ Tax Relief and Other Outstanding Measures
News Release
November 28, 2008
The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, acted today to implement the one-time tax relief for holders of Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) that was announced in the Government’s 2008 Economic and Fiscal Statement. The measure, along with several initiatives outstanding from the 2008 budget and a number of other separately announced tax changes, is included in a Notice of Ways and Means Motion tabled today in the House of Commons.

---

Release of The Fiscal Monitor
November 27, 2008
* September 2008: budgetary deficit of $0.4 billion
* April to September 2008: budgetary surplus of $0.8 billion

Related document:

* The Fiscal Monitor - September 2008
[ Earlier monthly releases of The Fiscal Monitor in 2008 - includes a link to earlier years ]

---

Government of Canada Maintains Strong and Responsible Economic Leadership
News Release
November 27, 2008
The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, today announced in his 2008 Economic and Fiscal Statement that the Government will take actions to restrain spending, protect Canada’s hard-won fiscal advantage and reinforce the stability of our financial system amid this period of global economic uncertainty.

Related Documents:

Economic and Fiscal Statement 2008
November 27, 2008
Overview
Complete report:
HTML - includes links to individual Chapters (1. Recent Economic Developments and Prospects - 2. Responsible Leadership: Actions to Strengthen Canada's Economic and Financial Fundamentals - 3. Fiscal Projections) and to Annexes (1. Canada's Total Government Fiscal Performance - 2. Draft Legislation and Explanatory Notes: Reduced 2008 Minimum Withdrawal Amount in respect of Registered Retirement Income Funds and Variable Benefits under a Registered Pension Plan)
PDF (2.2MB, 127 pages)

Backgrounder:
Reinforcing Financial System Stability

Related link:

Budget 2008 (February 26, 2008)

Source:
Finance Canada

---

Related links:

Why We Need a Coalition Government to Deal with the Economic Crisis
By Andrew Jackson
November 29, 2008
Canadian Labour Congress Statement
The Economic and Fiscal Update released by Finance Minister Flaherty on November 27, 2008 demonstrates that the Conservative government has no intention of seriously dealing with the global economic crisis and the prospect of fast rising unemployment.
Source:
Blog : Relentlessly Progressive Economics
[ Progressive Economics Forum ]

- Go to the Canadian Government Budgets Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/budgets.htm
- Go to the Federal Government Department Links (Agriculture to Finance) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/fedbkmrk.htm

2. Hunger Count 2008 : A Comprehensive Report on Hunger and Food Bank Use in Canada - November 2008
(Food Banks Canada)

More working families using food banks: study
November 25, 2008
More working families are availing themselves of food banks than ever before as Canada's economy continues to slump, according to an annual survey of the country's emergency food programs. Food Banks Canada's Hunger Count 2008 survey, released on Tuesday, found more than 14 per cent of all food-bank users have income from employment, an increase from 11 per cent in 2002.
Source:
CBC News

Complete report:

Hunger Count 2008:
A Comprehensive Report on
Hunger and Food Bank Use in Canada
(PDF - 1.4MB, 40 pages)
November 2008
Food bank use has persistently remained above 700,000 people per month since 1997, throughout some of the most economically prosperous years this country has ever seen. With economic uncertainty ahead, there is concern that this number could climb higher still. If we are to figure out how to significantly reduce hunger in Canada, we need to understand who is turning to food banks for help, and why. That is the purpose of HungerCount.
- incl. Provincial perspectives on hunger, a 1-2 page overview of food security in each province prepared by someone doing front-line work in the area of hunger and food security

More about Hunger Count - background notes and links to earlier versions of this report back to 1997

Source:
Food Banks Canada
Food Banks Canada (formerly the Canadian Association of Food Banks) is a national charitable organization representing the food bank community across Canada. Our members and their respective agencies serve approximately 85% of people accessing emergency food programs nationwide. Our mission is to meet the short-term need for food and find long-term solutions to reduce hunger.

- Go to the Food Banks and Hunger Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/foodbkmrk.htm

3. You can pay me now, or pay me later...
- The social cost of recessions / Shift in society's direction

The social cost of recessions
November 25, 2008
Conference Board of Canada head Anne Golden has her list of the social costs of recession, "the things we think of as important building blocks." These include university and job-training courses being put off as students say what's the point; dental care being postponed when company plans are lost because of layoffs; extra programs for the disabled or disadvantage being lost in the shuffle; and the family stress of having to cope with mortgages and car payments, or grown children moving home, when the jobs aren't there. Others have their lists: suicide rates, depression and family violence are all said to increase during tough economic times. So, some say, are property and violent crime.
Source
CBC News In Depth
[ CBC ]

------------------------------------------

November 27, 2008
Economic crisis may shift society's direction
By Alex Roslin
The news has been filled with increasingly panicky headlines about the latest bankruptcy or bailout package. But there has been little attention on the broader picture: what will life be like after the crash? How will society, politics, and the economy change? What can we do to help shape those changes? And what can we learn from past crises about what might happen? Progressive economists say the current crisis may actually be an opportunity in disguise. They say it will likely spark a huge public outcry for governments to rebuild gutted social programs and restructure the flailing economy in a more environmentally sustainable way. But such pressure is likely to clash with growing demands from financial interests for spending cuts, as the crisis decimates tax revenues and spawns yawning deficits. Already, Stephen Harper’s throne speech of last week vowed to reduce government grants, public-sector pay, and spending that is not “essential”.
Source:
Straight.com - The Georgia Straight - Vancouver's Online Source

4. Reducing Gaps in Health: A Focus on Socio-Economic Status in Urban Canada - November 2008
(Canadian Institute for Health Information)

Reducing Gaps in Health: A Focus on Socio-Economic Status in Urban Canada
November 24, 2008
Reducing Gaps in Health: A Focus on Socio-Economic Status in Urban Canada provides a broad overview of the links between socio-economic status and health in 15 Canadian census metropolitan areas (CMAs), while exploring socio-economic patterns and gradients within those CMAs and across urban Canada.
- incl. links to : Full Report | Sections | Companion Products | Media Release | Summary Report | Executive Summary

Full Report (PDF - 3MB, 171 pages)
Table of contents (HTML) - download individual sections of the report
Executive Summary (PDF - 66K, 4 pages)

Canadians in lower socio-economic groups more likely to be hospitalized for mental illness, child asthma
New CIHI study examines health differences in 15 urban areas in Canada; finds gaps wider in some areas than others.
News Release
November 24, 2008

Source:
Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI)
CIHI is an independent, not-for-profit organization that provides essential data and analysis on Canada’s health system and the health of Canadians.

Also from CIHI:

National Health Expenditure Trends, 1975 to 2008
November 13, 2008
- includes updated expenditure data by source of funds (sector) and use of funds (category) at the provincial/territorial level and for Canada.

Health Care in Canada 2008
October 23, 2008
- ninth in a series of annual reports on Canada's health care system.

- Go to the Health Links (Canada/International) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/health.htm

5. What's New in The Daily (Statistics Canada):
--- Canada's balance of international payments, third quarter 2008 - November 28
--- Payroll employment, earnings and hours, September 2008
- November 28
--- Canadian Social Trends - November 26
***** Inuit in Canada: Selected findings of the 2006 Census
***** Selected findings of the Aboriginal Children’s Survey 2006: Family and Community
--- Employment Insurance, September 2008 -
November 25
--- The Canadian Labour Market at a Glance, 2007 - November 25
---
National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth: School achievement of nine-year-olds, 2006 - November 24
--- Farm income, 2007 - November 24
--- Farm cash receipts, January to September 2008- November 24
--- Perspectives on Labour and Income - November 2008 issue
***** two featured articles:"Bridge employment" (or transition to retirement) and "Rural Commuting"

What's New in The Daily [Statistics Canada]:

November 28, 2008
Canada's balance of international payments, third quarter 2008
The current account surplus with the rest of the world narrowed in the third quarter of 2008, as exports slowed and earnings on foreign direct investment declined. On the financial side of the ledger, cross-border direct investment activity picked up while Canadian foreign portfolio investment eased and non-residents reduced their holdings of Canadian securities.
[ Canada's Balance of International Payments System of National Accounts - Second Quarter 2008 ]

November 28, 2008
Payroll employment, earnings and hours, September 2008
The average weekly earnings of employees increased 0.6% from August to $798.57 in September.
Compared with September 2007, average weekly earnings rose 3.3%.
[ Complete report (PDF - 2.2MB, 468 pages) ]

November 26, 2008
Canadian Social Trends - November 2008
The November 2008 online edition of Canadian Social Trends features two articles, both based on previously released reports.

Inuit in Canada: Selected findings of the 2006 Census
by Linda Gionet
Release date: November 26, 2008
This article offers a brief demographic and socio-economic profile of Inuit, based on results of the 2006 Census of Population. It compares Inuit living in Inuit Nunaat, which refers to the four Inuit regions across the North, to those living outside Inuit Nunaat. In the article, direct website links are provided containing a series of data tables for readers wanting more detailed information.
Complete article:
HTML
PDF
(116K, 7 pages)

Selected findings of the Aboriginal Children’s Survey 2006: Family and Community
by Vivian O’Donnell
Release date: November 26, 2008
This article is adapted from the initial analytical report on the 2006 Aboriginal Children’s Survey (ACS). The ACS was designed to provide a picture of the early development of Aboriginal children under age 6 and the social and living conditions in which they are learning and growing. The focus of this article is the family, community and traditional cultural activities of First Nations children living off reserve, Métis children, and Inuit children.
Complete article:
HTML
PDF
(133K, 9 pages)

NOTE: In this same issue of Canadian Social Trends, you'll find links to earlier articles on the following topics:
* Eldercare: What we know today (October 2008) * 2007 General Social Survey Report : The retirement plans and expectations of older workers (September 2008) * 2007 General Social Survey Report : The retirement puzzle: Sorting the pieces (September 2008) *
Life in metropolitan areas (July 2008)

[ Earlier issues of Canadian Social Trends - links to 150+ articles going back to 1998 - Articles by Subject ]

November 25, 2008
Employment Insurance, September 2008
In September, 480,370 Canadians received regular Employment Insurance (EI) benefits, down 5,080 or 1.0% from August, after seasonal adjustment. During the month, regular benefit payments increased 5.5% to $772.4 million.

November 25, 2008
The Canadian Labour Market at a Glance, 2007
This online publication, released today, takes more than just a glance at key trends in Canada's labour market for 2007. The publication consists of 16 sections that provide an overview of a host of labour market topics, illustrated by 101 charts. Among the topics examined are labour market trends; employment by industry; trends in workplace training; reasons workers select part-time jobs; the growth in temporary positions; absenteeism rates; wages and income; international comparisons; labour markets in provinces and census metropolitan areas; and the labour market for immigrants and Aboriginal people.

[ Earlier issues of Canadian Labour Market at a Glance - links to three earlier issues back to 2004

November 24, 2008
National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth: School achievement of nine-year-olds, 2006
The academic achievement of nine-year-olds has been strongly linked to the knowledge that children have of numbers, as well as to their ability to copy and use symbols, as they enter school at the age of 5.

November 24, 2008
Farm income, 2007
Realized net farm income increased $1.2 billion to $2.2 billion in 2007. Higher grain and oilseed prices more than offset increases in operating costs.

November 24, 2008
Farm cash receipts, January to September 2008

November 24, 2008
Perspectives on Labour and Income
The November 2008 online edition of Perspectives on Labour and Income, released today, features two articles.

1. "Bridge employment" examines the notion of retirement as a process rather than a discrete event. Many older workers who cease paid work return to the labour market, especially in the first year after leaving their career job, while many who start receiving a pension stay in the labour market in some capacity for roughly two to three years before they completely cease employment. For many, bridge employment appears to be a choice rather than a necessity.

2. "Rural Commuting" tells us that about 80% of commuting occurs between municipalities within larger urban centres, but rural commuting is more complex than commonly believed, and becoming increasingly so.

Source:
Perspectives on labour and income
"Get insight into the key issues facing the Canadian workplace with Perspectives on Labour and Income. Available in a quarterly print or monthly online format, Perspectives is one of the few impartial sources of Canadian labour market analysis available."
Perspectives Online - current month's issue
Back Issues of Perspectives on labour and income - back to October 2000
[Check out the interesting collection of free sample articles in each issue of Perspectives]

The Daily Archives - select a month from the drop-down menu to view releases for that month in chronological order

- Go to the Federal Government Department Links (Fisheries and Oceans to Veterans Affairs) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/fedbkmrk2.htm

6. What's new from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (Toronto) - November 26

From the Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU):

November 26, 2008

The global gender gap report 2008
26 Nov 08
- Report from the World Economic Forum ranking economies according to their gender gaps. Nordic countries lead and Canada is ranked at 31.

A living wage for Toronto
26 Nov 08
- Report from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives on what it costs to raise a family in the Greater Toronto Area.

Center ratios and group sizes: Charting progress for babies in child care research-based rationale
26 Nov 08
- Research-based rationale from the Center for Law and Social Policy on the recommendation for small group and sufficient numbers of providers in center-based child care.

Family security in insecure times: The case for a poverty reduction strategy in Canada 24 Nov 08 - New 2008 Report Cards from Campaign 2000 on child and family poverty in Canada.

more WHAT'S NEW ONLINE »

child care in the news


· ABC Learning list a ‘death sentence’ for childcare centres
[AU]
27 Nov 08

· Clegg: Childcare needs more men [UK]
25 Nov 08

· Province to add 2,350 child-care spots [CA-MB]
24 Nov 08

· Helping working parents [CA-ON]
21 Nov 08

· Where tax goes up to 60 per cent, and everybody’s happy paying it [UK]
15 Nov 08

more CC IN THE NEWS »

Related Links:

Subscribe to the CRRU email announcements list
Sign up to receive email notices of updates and new postings on the CRRU website which will inform you of policy developments in early childhood care and education, new research and resources for policy, newly released CRRU publications, and upcoming events of interest to the child care and broader community.

Links to child care sites in Canada and elsewhere

CRRU Publications - briefing notes, factsheets, occasional papers and other publications
ISSUE files - theme pages, each filled with contextual information and links to further info

Source:
Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU)

- Go to the Non-Governmental Early Learning and Child Care Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/ecd2.htm

7. Poverty Dispatch: U.S. media coverage of social issues and programs
(
Institute for Research on Poverty - University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Poverty Dispatch (U.S). ===> the content of this link changes twice a week
IRP compiles and distributes Poverty Dispatches twice a week. Each issue of the dispatch provides links to U.S. web-based news items dealing with topics such as poverty, welfare reform, child welfare, education, health, hunger, Medicare and Medicaid, etc.
Each Dispatch lists links to current news in popular print media.
Selected links appear below.

Poverty Dispatch - November 24, 2008
* Unemployment, Jobless Benefits, and Job Centers
* Increasing Need for Social Services
* Programs and State Information Systems - Indiana, Idaho
* Elderly People Living in Poverty
* Medicaid Payments for Unapproved Medications
* Hospitals' Finances, Medicaid Cuts, and Uncompensated Care
* Report: Uninsured Children and Families
* Foster Care Programs
* Nebraska Safe Haven Law
* State Economy - Michigan
* Home Foreclosures and Renters
* Second Chance Act and Prisoner Reentry
* Green Initiatives and Low-income Housing
* Post-Hurricane Katrina Permanent Housing
* The Economy and School Districts
* Study: Achievement of Students Living in Public Housing

Poverty Dispatch - November 20, 2008
* Increasing Applications to Assistance Programs - Oregon
* Homeless Children and Families
* U.S Families and Food Insecurity
* Poor Children, Nutrition, and Obesity
* Medicaid Reimbursement and Hospitals - Illinois
* Unemployment Rates
* Teenage Pregnancy - Milwaukee, WI
* State College Funding and Enrollment - California
* School Segregation - Twin Cities, MN
* States and Cuts to Programs for the Elderly and Disabled
* Pension Benefits and Retirees' Income - Louisiana
* Family Leave and Sick Leave

Past Poverty Dispatches
- links to two dispatches a week back to June 2006

Search Poverty Dispatches

If you wish to receive Poverty Dispatches by e-mail,
please send a request to rsnell@ssc.wisc.edu

Source:
Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP)
[ University of Wisconsin-Madison ]

- Go to the Links to American Government Social Research page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us.htm
- Go to the Links to American Non-Governmental Social Research (A-J) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us2.htm
- Go to the Links to American Non-Governmental Social Research (M-Z) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/us3.htm

8. Australian Policy Online Weekly Briefing - selected recent content

APO Weekly Briefing
The content of this page changes each week, and it includes links to a few book/report reviews, about two dozen new reports, a few job ads and 60 events (mostly conferences) of interest to social researchers...
Source:
Australian Policy Online (APO) - home page
With nearly 120 member centres and institutes, Australian Policy Online offers easy access to much of the best Australian social, economic, cultural and political research available online.
NOTE: the APO home page includes links to the five most popular reports on the APO website, and this list is updated each week.

APO Archive
The APO archive is grouped into 23 subject areas, with entries appearing in reverse chronological order.
* Ageing *Asia and the pacific * Citizenship and the law * Disability * Economics and trade * Education * Employment and workplace relations * The environment * Foreign policy and defence * Gender and sexuality * Health * Housing * Families and households * Immigration and refugees * Income, poverty and wealth * Indigenous * Media, communications and cultural policy * Politics and government * Population, multiculturalism and ethnicity * Religion and faith * Rural and regional * Science and technology * Social policy * Urban and regional planning * Youth

- Go to the Social Research Links in Other Countries (Non-Government) page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/internatngo.htm

9. CRINMAIL - November 2008
(Child Rights Information Network - CRIN)

From the Child Rights Information Network (CRIN):

27 November 2008 - CRINMAIL 1037
Sexual exploitation: CRIN is reporting from the World Congress Against the Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents in Brazil.
Sign up for updates by subscribing to our Violence CRINMAIL
* EDUCATION: UNESCO Global Monitoring Report 2009 [publication]
* PAKISTAN: Child rights defender murdered by Taliban, say reports [news]
* LATIN AMERICA: Map of Violence - The Young People of Latin America [publication]
* HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL: Special session on human rights in the DRC [news]
* NIGERIA: Early marriage adds to socioeconomic woes, NGOs say [news]
* JORDAN: UN moves to combat violence in schools [news]
* EMPLOYMENT: CRIN - International Service Bolivia
**NEWS IN BRIEF**

25 November 2008 - CRINMAIL 1036
* AFRICA: The African Report on Child Wellbeing 2008: How child-friendly are African governments? [publication]
* CHILD LABOUR: Combating trafficking in children for labour exploitation: A resource kit for policy-makers and practitioners [publication]
* AFGHANISTAN: Report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict [publication]
* PARTICIPATION: Participatory Impact Assessment: a Guide for Practitioners [publication]
* SLOVENIA: Ways of Implementing the EU Directives on Violence against Women, Children and Youth [event]
* ITALY: Promoting integration of marginalised children and youth [event]
* EMPLOYMENT: CRIN Office Manager [news]
**NEWS IN BRIEF**

Earlier issues of CRINMAIL
- links to 300+ earlier weekly issues
, many of which are special editions focusing on special themes, such as the 45th Session of the Committee on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Source:
CRINMAIL(incl. subscription info)
[ Child Rights Information Network (CRIN) ]

- Go to the Children's Rights Links page: http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/chnrights.htm


Disclaimer/Privacy Statement

Both Canadian Social Research Links (the site) and this Canadian Social Research Newsletter belong solely to me, Gilles Séguin.

I am solely accountable for the choice of links presented therein and for the occasional editorial comment - it's my time, my home computer, my experience, my biases, my Rogers Internet account and my web hosting service.

I administer the mailing list and distribute the weekly newsletter using software on the web server of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).
Thanks, CUPE!

If you wish to subscribe to the e-mail version of newsletter, go to the Canadian Social Research Newsletter Online Subscription page:
http://lists.cupe.ca/mailman/listinfo/csrl-news

You can unsubscribe by going to the same page or by sending me an e-mail message [ gilseg@rogers.com ]

------------------------

The e-mail version of this newsletter is available only in plain text (no graphics, no hyperlinks, no fancy bolding or italics, etc.) to avoid security problems with government departments, universities and other networks with firewalls. The text-only version is also friendlier for people using older or lower-end technology.

Privacy Policy:
The Canadian Social Research Newsletter mailing list is not used for any purpose except to distribute each weekly issue.
I promise not share any information on this list, nor to send you any junk mail.

Links presented in the Canadian Social Research Newsletter point to different views about social policy and social programs.
There are some that I don't agree with, so don't get on my case, eh...

To access earlier online HTML issues of the Canadian Social Research Newsletter, go to the Newsletter page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/news.htm

Please feel free to distribute this newsletter as widely as you wish, but please remember to mention Canadian Social Research Links when you do.

Cheers!
Gilles

E-MAIL:
gilseg@rogers.com


*****************************************************

Five Reasons To Believe Computers

are Male/Female

*****************************************************

 
Five reasons to believe computers are female:

   1. No one but the Creator understands their internal logic.
   2. The native language they use to communicate with other computers is incomprehensible to everyone else.
   3. The message "Bad command or file name" is about as informative as, "If you don't know why I'm mad at you, then I'm certainly not going to tell you."
   4. Even your smallest mistakes are stored in long-term memory for later retrieval.
   5. As soon as you make a commitment to one, you find yourself spending half your paycheck on accessories for it.

Five reasons to believe computers are male:

   1. They have a lot of data, but are still clueless.
   2. They are supposed to help you solve problems, but half the time they ARE the problem.
   3. As soon as you commit to one you realize that, if you had waited a little longer, you could have obtained a better model.
   4. In order to get their attention, you have to turn them on.
   5. Big power surges knock them out for the rest of the day

Source:
http://www.c4vct.com/kym/humor/5mfcomp.htm

***************************

And, in closing...

***************************

Elf off, eh.
http://elfyourself.jibjab.com/


Smoker's Mittens
http://www.suck.uk.com/product.php?rangeID=69
It's that time of the year again, so if/when you do your Christmas shopping, remember the blizzard smokers on your Xmas list...


A Study of Asymmetry of Faces
http://www.upscale.utoronto.ca/GeneralInterest/Harrison/Parity/FaceStudy/FaceStudy.html