Tuesday, October 8, 2019

The Pipeline is being built (so shut up already.)

It seems to me that there are a lot of people in Canada confused about the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion project. Some folks, (particularly in British Columbia) don't want the pipeline built at all, because its product is oil, something they would rather do without, or because that oil produces an environmental risk, (which it does, in any form.) Some folks (particularly in Alberta) want the pipeline built because its construction and existence means continued employment in the area, continued revenues created from the product itself. Then there is a third group of people made up of folks (from all over Canada, including the west) that either do or don't want the pipeline built, but regardless of their thoughts or feelings on the matter, believe that the project is “on again, off again” depending on the decisions of politicians or their parties. From these folks we get things like social media commentaries, protests, advertisements in media and entertainment, even the Conservative Party has made “Build the Pipeline” the major component of their platform in the 2019 election.

The Pipeline Project is not, in any way, being hindered by anything, nor has it ever been. The pipeline project is an expansion of what is already there. The new pipeline is going to run right beside the old pipeline, that has been there since 1953. The foundation for this work, the ground preparation, the laying of rock, the purchasing of that rock, has already happened. Tens of millions of dollars have already been spent on the laying of this foundation. The foundation has already begun being put in place. The pipeline is happening, it's being built currently, as you read these words. Our prime minister has not stopped any part of the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion project, neither have the provincial governments, environmental groups, Native groups, no one, ever, anywhere. (The current downturn of work in the Alberta oil fields has nothing to do with the TMPE.)

So why do we have expensive campaigns to sway the minds of the public, one way or the other? Why do we have a political party whose entire platform is centred around a fictional problem? Why do we have this tension in western Canada over an economical concern that doesn't exist? Why do we have to think about all these made up intentions? I think the answers lie in usual arenas of social engineering, we think these things because if we're thinking about them, we're not thinking about other things. It's a purposeful distraction. If the pipeline equals jobs for a generation, then that is what we need to bother ourselves with, money. I think this entirely the reason for any pro TMPE campaign. The anti-TMPE campaign is entirely about concern for the environment. So, in the collective eye of Canadian society, on one side of the argument is a redneck oil worker and on the other side is a tree-hugging hippy. If we're thinking about jobs, we're thinking short term and more importantly, not long term. In the long term, there is only bad news, so let's ignore that...

The environmental concerns around the production and use of petroleum products are real. No one is contesting the detrimental effects of burning fossil fuels, (at least, no one who should be listened to. To be anti-science is to be anti-fact and therefore pro-fiction.) However, folks who advocate for the continued use of petroleum products do so from within the comforts of establishment. There simply is no alternative to fossil fuel. We have no solar arrays, wind farms, tide generators, etc. For the pro-oil side, the onus is on the environmentalists to come up with alternatives, or shut up. (Literally, this is entirely their meme exemplified.) We also have no alternatives for the byproducts of oil production, most notably plastics. “Do you want to stop having all the plastic things you have now?” ask oil proponents, already knowing the answer. 

Our required transition from dirty energy to clean and from finite resources to renewable will happen anyway, because it must. This is not the point of this essay. I'm not here to argue for or against the production or use of oil. I have no solution. I just want the argument about the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion to end, because it doesn't really exist in the first place. You can have your opinions about whether or not the expansion, or the use of oil in general, should continue or not. You can have your opinions about safety, health, politics and the economy. What you can't say is “the pipeline is being held up/stopped/hindered or held in question.” The gravel has been purchased. Here is the map of where the pipe is going, right beside the existing pipe, for the most part. Stop being duped into having an argument that doesn't exist by marketeers. 

Sunday, July 7, 2019

A short biography of Brian C. Taylor

Biography of Brian C. Taylor

Brian Cameron Taylor, born in April of 1972, to an American mother and Canadian father, has always been a creative person. Both his parents were audiophiles, sang and shared through music. Brian's dad also played guitar, wrote songs and poems. Brian first picked up a guitar and took lessons at age eight, but aside from the occasional short story, didn't really begin expressing himself in any way until his teen years. Brian wrote more short stories, screenplays, songs, made music in several bands, made films with his friends on 1980s video cameras, editing the films with two VCRs. Snippets of these films still exist, but you're not getting links to them... Recordings and video of songs exist, ditto...

After Brian graduated high school he married, had a family. At the beginning of the 90s Brian wrote and shot an indie feature Killer 13, still on video, still with his friends and now-coworkers of a Dominos Pizza. Killer 13 is a sci-fi horror film about aliens (that look human) who conspire to release poisons that will rid the Earth of humans, (presumably not the human looking aliens.) That film has been converted to digital and is on Brian's hard drive. (Don't hold your breath.) Also in the nineties Brian co-wrote a novel Cartoon Bomb with another friend. Although this manuscript was sent to a few choice publishers, it was refused by all. Cartoon Bomb is a novel written in a cartoon universe, where anything is possible. It is about two separate groups of people, both whimsical and cliched, both exploited and driven to war. It was purposely created guaranteed to offend everyone. The editor of the book, a brilliant and sensible woman, wrote in her notes “This is where, as a subjective reader, I would tear your book to shreds.” Brian remembers his mothers' review of the first sex scene (of many) in the book as a single word, “hilarious.” Brian has recently heard that there is an effort underway to resurrect Cartoon Bomb in some format or other. Stay tuned, I guess...???

Despite a movie, a book and recording fourteen original songs with two different bands, somehow, in the 90s, Brian failed to ensure that his wife would not grow weary of his horseshit and move three thousand miles away with his kids. This led to a disillusionment of Brian's dreams and aspirations. Brian replaced his family with sex, drugs and alcohol. That didn't help make him healthier or happier, but it did lead to his first professionally recorded demo, under the moniker thief produced by Henry Piovesan, in Vernon BC. There aren't links to the original recordings, but there are links to rerecordings of the songs and many more original songs here 

In the first year of the new century Brian started to get his life back together. He continued working with local musicians but also recorded his own songs, (featured at above link.) Brian's writing began appearing on forums and websites in the form of social criticism, political commentary with a hint of activism. Since the 90s, this writing appeared anonymously, Brian had only released his music, no writing or films online. 

Then, on the morning of September 11th 2001, something happened on television that changed Brian's outlook on life and provided a target at which to direct his energies. The internet provided a nearly endless stream of information, education and entertainment. Brian studied history, sociology, psychology and especially philosophy, earning what he would later call an unofficial Liberal Arts degree with a major in Conspiracy.

In 2002 a friend and former bandmate contacted Brian about starting a new band and a new band was formed, but writing, rehearsing and constant personnel changes led to few performances and fewer recordings. From 2004, you can hear the drummer recorded on Brian's track Expect to be Saved Any Day at the above soundclick link. It was also in this year that Brian released his solo tracks at that same link. In 2005 he released four new thief songs now featuring the vocals of his wife Dawn. In fact, the end of Expect to be Saved Any Day features Dawn and Brians' two sons at the end. 2004 also cemented the final line up of what would become a band called Hub. Hub was a powerpop three piece that melted faces all over the Okanagan from 2005-2007, but it takes a lot of energy to melt said faces and that energy ran out. Hub, however, was really good and probably the pinnacle of Brian's songwriting and performance. You can listen to Hub here You can also watch this poorly shot (cell phone) film featuring more material and behind the scenes footage. 
In 2006, in response to a new New Age movement afoot where spiritual gurus and academic atheists alike where selling books and appearing on television to help folks decipher their “Authentic Self” Brian began researching and writing about the Self, what that meant and how it came to mean that. In 2008 Brian googled “the smartest readers on the internet” and found a site called Scientific Blogging. He began contributing his essays and they were well received by intelligent folk, one of his essays Conservatism is Unnatural was even featured at a separate website Big Think. The following link is to his original Blog Assignees'Prerogative and Brian's first published writing under his real name. 

In 2009 Brian started his own blog anti-socialengineering.com for all his writings, not just the more philosophical. This blog would become https://www.hypermanipulation.com There are now over 100 essays there. (Although, by 2018 Brian had basically stopped writing political essays out of necessity and courtesy. Complaining about the King, how Brian sums up his entire published work, has become somewhat overbearing, falling upon ignorant ears.) Brian also began writing publicly at several other websites, most notably Above Top Secret, a conspiracy forum. 

In the last half of the opening decade of the 21st century, Brian also returned to film making, as technology had gotten to the point where digital editing programs were commonplace and even cell phones were starting to take decent video. The first digital films Brian created were Hub related music videos that were released and then taken back down. (Because they weren't good enough to be "commercial releases".) However, 2009 saw the release of Brians first ever released film: G20 Pittsburgh Protests (best and worst of). This film is an edit of protester footage and news footage. It is 45 minutes long. 
In 2010, Brian published Anti-Social Engineering theHyper-Manipulated Self with his own
company PostPaper Publications. 
ISBN 978-0-557-99909-5 http://stores.lulu.com/postpaper 

ASE the HMS was a collection of essays that came together into a thesis promising to define the scientifically determined authentic self. The book itself remains available everywhere in the world in various formats, and Brian's blog continued to release essays from it, which have been read thousands of times and continue to be cited in academia, to this day. There simply isn't a more accurate depiction of the self available. Brian also created a “commercial” for the book.

Brian edited his first concert film, built out of cel phone footage downloaded from youtube of Muse's concert in Vancouver. It's pretty grainy and pixelated, but it's edited well. It's 1 hour 43 minutes long, watch it here 

In 2010 Brian began collecting gear to make films more seriously, seeing how others were making indie films and releasing them online. He started En Queue Film, an all-volunteer film production company. By 2011, EQF had released its first “test film” Battle at Beaver Creek  which was a teaser for the planned full length feature of the same name. Pleased with the results of this film, Brian decided to move forward with the production of the full-length feature, which was a massive undertaking that broke all the rules of first-time film making. It had multiple locations, special effects, stunts, over 100 cast members. Brian wrote the script, based on his own short story and began looking for people and places to start working with. This took over a year, culminating in three locations and a list of 150 volunteers, (a lot of them painters, because Brian worked in a paint store.) 

While pre-production of Battle at Beaver Creek continued into the spring of 2012, Brian wrote and shot the Bite. A horrifying little film with a twist on the zombie genre.
You can also watch the making of video, (and all our videos) on our youtube channel here https://www.youtube.com/enqueuefilm which was also created at the same time. 

The filming of Battle at Beaver Creek started in the summer of 2011, then 2012 and then again in the summer of 2013. There were a few scenes filmed inside, which happened over the course of winter months in between the summer exteriors. There are several “making of” videos about this and other productions from the time on our youtube channel. 

Between November of 2013 and February of 2014 Brian wrote, shot and completed Garf Garf, which is the story of a friendly alien who conjures hamburgers. It is Brian's most philosophically complex film while simultaneously being his most accessible. Garf Garf was created to be understood by anyone, of any age, speaking any language. It remains the film Brian is most proud of. 

Brian continued to make concert films out of youtube footage, of Nine Inch Nails, of U2. The quality gets better as does the technology. Friends get to see these films. He made films of friends, for friends. He still does. 

Battle at Beaver Creek was released on various sites in December 2014. Since then the film has gained the largest returns from being available on Amazon Prime in the US, Uk Japan and Germany. It also has yet to return even half of what it cost. 

In 2014 Brian met Okanagan artist Destanne Norris and decided to begin making a film about her art and life. In July 2015 they released a piece of the documentary A Day at theAlan Brooks Nature Centre with Destanne Norris

On Halloween night 2015 Brian released TheDream is Ready at Horrorfest in Kelowna BC. 

It won second best picture and best cinematography for Kora Vanderlip, who also worked on Battle at Beaver Creek. The Dream is Ready is a sci-fi horror teaser for a larger project, a proposed feature entitled Last Human Being. The short and the proposed feature are based upon the novella Brian
wrote of the same name, published in April of 2015 here

The book is written in the present tense and simply describes the scenes, spelling out the action as if in a film. The story is about a powerful psychic named Cole, who is unwittingly conspiring to end a mental war with a mysterious consciousness, which takes place within a drug-induced dream. The Dream is Ready continues to get views and generate interest in the larger project, but like Brian's two other complete scripts, LastHuman Being remains only ink on paper. 

The other two complete project proposals were also written between 2013-2015, the Smell of Sun on Skin is Brian's sexy, modern re-working of Albert Camus existential classic The Stranger. Real Country Dark is the story of the lives of four unrelated men who die together in the Canadian wilderness, which is based on real events. Brian believes he could make Last Human Being and Real Country Dark for a one million dollar investment. The Smell of Sun on Skin requires two million and a known actor as leading man.

From 2015 to 2018 Brian filmed artist Destanne Norris for the documentary Beneath the Painted Surface which was completed December 2018. 

Also during this time Brian acted in some friend's films and also helped make others, as executive producer or editor. All Brian's film credits are available at his IMDB page here https://www.imdb.com/name/nm5400748/?ref_=ttfc_fc_wr1

In 2018 met a young local filmmaker named Bowen O'Brien and the two decided to make a film together. Adulthood is the story of a group of kids growing up in a world where reaching adulthood means certain undeath. It won Best Story and Best Film at Horrorfest in Kelowna. It will likely be released online in the fall of 2019.

In 2018 and 2019, Brian pulled back on the amount of work he created. Back problems and subsequent immobility required this hiatus, but marketing Beneath the Painted Surface also requires the bulk of Brian's time. However, more writing, more films and even more music are likely in Brian's future. Stay tuned.