Radio Freethinker

Vancouver's Number 1 Skeptical Podcast and Radio Show

Posts Tagged ‘Poverty’

RFT Ep 252 – The GMO and You Edition

Posted by Don McLenaghen on May 10, 2014

Download the episode here! 


Prairie report – The price of dignity?


A special report from the Prairies on poverty – How kicking out a homeless man from a grocery store reflects on the deficiencies of our society.

Further Reading:

Non-English signs


Recent debate about a Chinese only sign in Richmond leads to thought about what multiculturalism ultimately means.

Further Reading:

Temporary foreign workers


A 40yr old program gone off the rails under Harper’s watch…how did it happen?

Further Reading:

Chernobyl at 28


28yrs later, life has not only survived at Chernobyl but is flourishing.

Further Reading:

After tens of thousands of years of modifying organisms, what does GMO mean now? And the most counter-intuitive argument for GMO labeling.

Posted in Blogs, Show notes | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Radio Freethinker Episode 171 – Living Wage Edition

Posted by Don McLenaghen on June 19, 2012

This week:

– Chinese rockets,

– Neanderthal painters,

– The crime of atheism,

– Reproductive music,

– The poor and working poor (Part 2 of 2 interview with Iglika Ivanova)

Download the episode here!

Topics: China’s rockets

China launched a manned mission Shenzhou 9 to their orbiting space station Tiangong 1. We talk about the future of China’s space program.Find out more:

Neanderthal painters

Resent research pushed back the date of the earliest cave art to about 41,000 years old. The new twist is homo-sapiens were thought to be the only species to create cave art but humans were not suppose to have arrived in the region until 35,000 years ago. Some people are now speculating that Neanderthals may have been the artist.Find out more:

The crime of being an atheist

An atheist in Indonesia has been sentence to 10 years on jail for professing his atheism. A Kuwaiti man faces 10 years of hard labour in prison and feel lucky he avoided a potential death sentence for blasphemy. We discuss the criminalization of atheist around the world, the need to be vigilant and globally supportive. Find out more:

Reproductive music Research has shown the obvious that sex sells but how it manifest itself in different genre of music and the dubious link to evolutionary advantage make it an interesting topic for the show. Find out more:

The poor and working poor

Don’s sits down with Iglika Ivanova in the Radio Free Thinker virtual studio and discusses poverty and Living wage. Iglika Ivanova is a research economist at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives for BC. Find out more:

Skeptical Highlights:

Walk for Peace

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Walk for Peace march. In 1982, 35,000 people marched from Kitsilano to the West End calling for world peace. By 1984, the march had grown to 100,000 people. Keeping with the Humanist commitment to global peace, BC Humanist Association invites you to join them in the walk to help raise their banner and the humanist commitment to peace, respect and a civil society

When: Saturday, June 30 at Noon Where: Sunset Beach or meet up at the Sunset Grill around 11:50 am Cost: Free

Humanist Brunch for Peace?

The BC Humanist Association doesn’t want to you walk on empty stomachs, so before the march, they are planning to meet at the Sunset Grill for brunch at 10:00 am. Afterward, they will join the march which departs at noon and wraps up at 2pm at Sunset Beach for entertainment, music, and celebration.

Please RSVP if you plan to join them for brunch (so they can confirm our reservation) RSVPs close on Wednesday, June 27th.

When: Saturday, June 30 at 10:00 am Where: Sunset Grill (Yew and York Street) Cost: Whatever you order off the menu

Aan’s Legal Defence Fund

Atheist Alliance International has launched an appeal for donations to help pay for Aan’s legal costs and to support the Aan family’s living expenses while he is in jail.

CFI Transnational wants to make the voices of those who support Alexander loud and clear to the Indonesian government. The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is organizing a letter-writing campaign on Alexander’s behalf, and CFI urges you to take part. They have created a custom letter which you can sign or add to and add your voice to those fighting for Aan’s freedom.

Please support Atheist around the world in their struggle against persecution by donating here.

Posted in Show notes | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Saturday Stub: Hungary Outlaws Homeless

Posted by Ethan Clow on December 3, 2011

When I first saw this headline I was impressed. Oh wow. Hungary has outlawed homelessness, how interesting! But then I read it a bit more carefully. Hungary has outlawed homeless people. Ah, that makes less sense.

In an article reported here by the BBC, the Hungarian parliament overwhelmingly passed this new law that makes it a criminal offence to be caught sleeping in the streets. There’s no mention if other public sleeping is now illegal. I’ve seen people here in Vancouver fall asleep on the bus. What about a warm day in the park or on the beach? Do you need to carry around your deed to your house to avoid getting punished by this law?

If you’re caught sleeping on the street, you receive a warning first, further rule-breaking will net you a fine ($600 [£384]) or prison.

This might seem like a dumb question. But where would a homeless person get $600? This reminds me of a real stupid law that Vancouver had a decade or so ago (I think its gone now) where if you were caught washing car windows for change, you could be fined large sums of money. This is one of those catch-22 laws that lead the victim into an endless cycle of “I need the money for X so I need to do Y, but Y is illegal and I get a fine, so I need to get money for the fine so I do Y” and so on and so on.

Budapest, capital of Hungary, is said to have a homeless population of 10,000 people. So what exactly does this law do to reduce that number? Well, obviously it doesn’t. It just moves these people to a different area, prison. Rather than finding ways to help these people, they’ll just be sent to prison, out of sight, out of mind.

This is also another example of irrational thinking when it comes to making laws. Instead of trying to address the problem of homelessness, they make a law that hurts homeless people. Of course the reason they didn’t make a law outlawing homelessness is because such a law puts the burden of applying it on the government and community, instead they have a law here that puts the burden of blame on the homeless people. Instead of having a law that cast the shadow of “we failed to account for the safety and security of our citizens” on the community and country, they have created one which puts the homeless person at fault; “its their fault they don’t have a home, if only they worked harder”


Posted in Blogs, Ethan's Blogs | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »