Greetings one and all and welcome to CANBranchOut. My name is Bill, I am semi-retired (..cough, unemployed and middle aged) and have lived in Toronto since the early ‘70s. I’ve toyed with the idea of creating a blog for some time but have often procrastinated in usual fashion. Like many Canadians, I am highly opinionated on several issues but alas, not often vocal, at least beyond my immediate reach of those who are tired of hearing me.

In looking up definitions for “branch out”, I come across terms like to start to do something different from what you usually do” or to expand or extend one’s interests” and finally “to start doing something new or different. Well, I believe this is very fitting as I go forth treading into unknown territory. You see, although I’m comfortable around computers, I’ve never embraced the whole social media concept, unlike the youth of our time. Sure I have an email account, which I scan hourly in the hopes that someone sent me something, but, I never delved into the fury of Facebook, Twitter or the like. Perhaps I’m a little old fashioned (who am I kidding, I am), and as much as I welcome the latest technologies, I am a little apprehensive of the consequences associated with them; social media included. There is tremendous power and vast reaching influence on the web today. That power and influence can be used, or abused, in ways to promote good and bad in society and requires discipline and responsibility to ensure ones accountability for their actions. That being said, it’s an incredible forum and indispensible resource to convey ideas, share thoughts and solicit feedback from others.

I established this blog to do just that (at least I hope I did). My goal is to express opinions and engage in dialogue on issues I believe to be important socially and culturally, that will generally be in the public’s best interest and impact most people as a whole. Now, as I said in the beginning, I tend to be very opinionated and I fully expect that we will not always agree; but hey, that’s what this site is all about, to hear one another’s opinions and engage in friendly(?) conversation (, debate). Being Canadian, I will naturally focus on local and national affairs but may explore international affairs at times particularly if it somehow affects this country. After all, Canadians are opinionated and very often complacent but seldom vocal. I hope this blog will in some small way help to remedy this condition.

Once again welcome and I hope you enjoy. As always, your feedback is more than welcome.