Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Well, it's been an interesting year. Dion and the Liberals tried and failed to sell the Green Shift. Harper and the Conservatives won a minority, then had to prorogue parliament to avoid losing it. South of the border, Obama won a historic presidential election. Iraq and Afghanistan continue to fester. The world faces a deepening economic crisis. And the year ends with Israel launching a serious military offensive in Gaza. But through it all, hope for a better future shines through on this night as people the world over welcome the new year.

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, may you find peace, health and happiness in 2009. Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

Wishing everyone Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

That's "Senator" Partisan Hack To You

Congratulations to Jabba the Duff on finally coming out of the closet. It was always rather a poorly kept secret that Duffy was a Conservative hack in journalists' clothing, but at least now he'll be guaranteed an income till age 75 and a cushy pension thereafter.

But quite aside from Senator Duffy wallowing in pork that was heretofore utilized merely as a topping for his ample servings of poutine, there remains the blatantly obvious flip-floppery of der Führer Stephen Harper stuffing the Senate with 18 patronage appointments after staking a part of his political career on vowing to institute an elected upper chamber. I'm sure we'll hear all the usual Conservative propaganda about how you have to break it in order to fix it, or fix it in order to break it, or something like that. Some see Harper as a "pragmatist". I see him as a man so crazed by the prospect of losing power, that he will throw anyone and anything (including his own ideals) under the bus when the going gets tough. Like atheists, it would seem that there are no Reformers in a foxhole.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Bailing Out

Jim Arnett, appointed only 3 weeks ago as special auto industry advisor to Stephen Harper and Dalton McGuinty, has quit his job. Although he will continue to work with McGuinty, he appears to have had irreconcilable differences with the Harper Conservatives over the plan for restructuring the auto industry.
Federal insiders said yesterday the Conservative government never really saw eye-to-eye with Arnett on what needed to be done, and Ottawa has no immediate plans to look for a successor.
That sounds pretty bad. This sounds even worse:
Instead, Ottawa will rely on internal advice on how GM, Chrysler and Ford can be made more competitive.
Fantastic. Hopefully, these advisors will be as productive and credible as other giants of Conservative "internal advice":

Wajid Khan: Harper's former special advisor on mid-east affairs. Khan's report on the middle east was so top-secret it was never released to the public, and so influential that Stephen Harper was single-handedly able to use it to bring lasting peace to Arabs and Jews. Khan worked all of these miracles while possibly only violating Elections Canada spending laws to the tune of $30, 000, which most Canadians considered a bargain.

Jim Prentice, Lisa Raitt, John Baird: Together, these three intellectual superstars comprise Harper's environment & energy committee. Just like Obama's energy czar Steven Chu (who won a Nobel Prize in Physics and is the director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), this team's scientific credentials speak for themselves. Prentice is a lawyer who specializes in physical property rights and served as director of the Calgary Winter Club. Raitt is a lawyer who was the former CEO of the Toronto Port Authority. And Baird has a Bachelor of Arts from Queen's and has been a vegetarian since 1997. Toss in Rona Ambrose, and you have a true scientific powerhouse that has helped to make Canada the envy of the world when it comes to action on the environment.

With internal advisors like this, I have no doubt that Canada's New Government can guarantee the automakers a rosy future, just as Jim Flaherty projected bugdet surpluses for the next five years. And we all know how that turned out.

Monday, December 15, 2008

CPC Spin & Public Ignorance: The Chicken Or The Egg?

A few days ago, Steve V over at Far and Wide posted about the reality of seemingly overwhelming public disapproval of the coalition. In general, I agreed with most of what he had to say. But I couldn't escape the nagging feeling that public views on matters of government are largely shaped by knowledge about the way government is supposed to work. Today, some numbers have come out which confirm that, in general, Canadians are rather poorly informed about our system of government.
For example, results of the Ipsos Reid survey show 75 per cent of Canadians asked believe the prime minister, or the Governor General, is head of state.
It's a telling statistic, and I have to wonder how a misperception of our PM being the head of state may have influenced public acceptance of the legitimacy of the coalition.

All of which brings me to the point of my post. The Conservatives have been busy in recent weeks denouncing the coalition as "illegitimate" and "undemocratic". Harper himself has said:
"The opposition does not have the democratic right (to replace the Conservative government)...without your say, without your consent and without your vote"
This is of course a falsehood in our constitutional monarchy. So by repeating a lie, is Harper creating ignorance, or simply feeding off it?

In either case, I think a strong case can be made for mandatory civics classes in our elementary and secondary schools. As citizens of a democratic nation, we owe it to ourselves and to future generations to take our obligations as electors seriously. As Marc Chalifoux (president of the Dominion Institute) said:
"Canadians certainly were interested by what was going on in Ottawa, but lacked in many cases the basic knowledge to form informed opinions"

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Gretchen Carlson: The Festivus Grinch

In response to a Washington man's request to place a Festivus pole amongst the holiday displays at the state capitol in Olympia, Gretchen Carlson of FauxNews expressed her phony outrage at yet another attack on Christmas by the heathens. Said Carlson:
I am tolerant. I'm all for free speech and free rights, just not on December 25th.
You can watch the whole video below.

And for those of you who lived in a cave during the 90's, here is a bit of info on Festivus: The holiday for the rest of us.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Buckle Up, It's Iggy!

Mere days after Dion's resignation, the Liberal caucus has endorsed Michael "Iggy" Ignatieff as interim leader. As readers of this blog will know, I was a supporter of Bob Rae's leadership bid. Like Bob, I wish that the LPC had decided to engage the entire membership in the leadership process, but time and circumstances appear to have dictated otherwise. No matter. The Liberal Party has a number of difficult problems on its plate, and continued political infighting about the leadership need not be one of them. Bob Rae himself has been tremendously gracious about his withdrawal, and has unequivocally given his support to Iggy. From Bob's blog:
I offer my full and unqualified support to Michael, a friend and colleague of more than forty years standing. I call on my friends and supporters to do the same. I know Michael to be a person of wisdom and generosity. He will make a great Prime Minister.
Though I'm disappointed that Rae is out, I think it's time to move on. I still believe the OMOV system will be an important mechanism for the LPC to generate funds and interest, and to connect with grassroots supporters. But this debate is better saved for the convention. For now, it's time for Liberals to focus on the new leader. Iggy's greatest task in the coming days will be to bring the party together and devise a strategy to deal with the inevitable CPC attacks prior to and during the upcoming parliamentary session. If he is to succeed, he will require the party's full support, and he should have it.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Dion's Gone...Now What?

Now that Stéphane Dion has officially offered his resignation, a few thoughts on the current state of the Liberal nation.
  • Despite the rather ignominious manner of his departure, Dion should always be remembered as a man of intellect, honesty and integrity.
  • Don't rush. Although the weight of support seems to be behind Ignatieff (Dominic LeBlanc has just given a press conference in support of Iggy), the Liberals need to avoid "installing" him as leader via a backroom deal.
  • Open up the leadership process to the membership. A One Member One Vote system would serve the dual purpose of offering an inclusive and transparent process, and re-connecting with grassroots supporters.
  • Fire every single person working on the Liberal marketing team. Now. The Liberals have to understand that good ideas don't just sell themselves, especially not in the face of a vicious and ruthlessly well oiled CPC attack machine. While they search for a new leader and a new message, they need to hire PR types that are as shrewd as their Conservative counterparts to sell their vision to Canadians.
  • Keep up the pressure on Stephen Harper. Make no mistake, King Steve isn't spending even one minute navel gazing about what he could have done differently. He is sitting somewhere, seething at the the way in which he was betrayed by the opposition parties, and he is already plotting his next move. Be prepared.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

We Need Breathing Room!

And he got it.

Had the GG denied King Steve his prorogation, she would likely have angered many wingnuts, some of whom already see her position as a relic of the monarchy and wish to do away with it. And although her decision to continue with tradition and rubber-stamp the PM's request will assuage their fears, it actually lends some creedence to their views in a roundabout sort of way. Our system of government has operated with the implicit assumption that no Prime Minister would put the GG in the difficult position of having to rigorously interpret the constitution and actually utilize her royal prerogative in a meaningful way. Of course, Harper is a dick, and had no problem testing the will of the GG in order to save his own job. By acquiescing, Michaelle Jean has kept with tradition, but has unwittingly become complicit in Harper's political gamesmanship. And if the GG does not intervene at a time when the Prime Minister is attempting to misuse the constitution for his own political gain, then truly what function does she serve? In my opinion, her decision has set a dangerous precedent. Only time will tell.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Tears Flow at the National Compost

It's not particularly high minded, but I must confess I do get a sort of smug satisfaction in watching the worthless hacks at the National Post foaming at the mouth over the prospect of a coalition government.

In a particularly fetid editorial which may as well have been penned by Pierre Poilievre himself, the question is posed:
[A]h, "elections" -- who else remembers that quaint method we once used to pick prime ministers?
This CPC talking point and outright LIE has been exposed and quashed many times over, but needless to say in our parliamentary democracy, we have never used general elections to "pick prime ministers". We pick MPs, as this insightful article explains.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Kay makes an impassioned case for Canada to become a Republic, complaining about the country's future being left in the hands of an unelected Governor General.
The wonderful thing about the American system — the aspect that never gets talked about for some reason — is that the President can appoint any genius he likes to Cabinet spots ... The President, as ultimate decider, just picks the best people, they accept and … that's it.
Kay fails to explain why unelected Presidential appointees are more "democratic" than a GG, or what in particular makes them "the best people". One need only look as far back as Donald Rumsfeld, Alberto Gonzalez and Michael Brown to realize that Presidential appointees needn't be qualified or competent to earn their jobs.

Finally Lorne Gunter writes a tongue-in-cheek piece bemoaning the economic calamity which awaits the country under a "socialist" coalition. I would point out only that Lorne writes for the National Post, an ardently conservative newspaper which has lost money every year since its inception (by some estimates, $15 million per year) and continues to do so.

The prospect of a coalition government comes with a number of question marks, and though I support it, I do have some degree of trepidation. Still, watching the conservapundits sweat and squirm puts a small but sweet smile on my face.

Monday, December 1, 2008

All For One and One For All!

Well, maybe not quite. Still, Stéphane Dion, Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe today announced their intent to bring down the Conservative government by entering into a formal coalition. Good for them. Harper's own pathological need to destroy his political opponents has cost him dearly, and he may yet end up paying the ultimate political price.

He still has a few tricks up his sleeve, and he won't hesitate to use them. Most likely he'll ask the GG to prorogue parliament, a shameless move designed only to avoid a non-confidence vote. Alternately, he could face the vote, lose it, then petition the GG to call a general election. Of course the GG is under no obligation to grant him either of his wishes, but King Steve will surely make her job as hard as possible.

Will the coalition last? No. But I wonder if a brief chance for co-governance would soften both the Liberals and the NDP to the idea of a more formal arrangement in the future. Hell, it worked for the Conservatives. How does 'The Liberal Democratic Party of Canada' sound? Weird, I know. But then, these are weird times.

P.S. My blog is undergoing a bit of a facelift. I'm going for a somewhat 'cleaner' look. My apologies for any glitches while I tinker.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Run For Your Lives, It's A Coup d'État!!

Sigh. Once again, the inveterate howler monkeys otherwise known as the Blogging Tories have managed to get their panties in a knot over the latest threat to democracy as we know it. A "coup d'état", they're calling it. A veritable overthrow of the Harper government by an opposition that has suddenly discovered its testicles.

Over at Crotch of the Matter, Sandy resurrects the moldy corpse of the sponsorship scandal, blames the mainstream media, and looks up the wikipedia definition of "coup d'état":
A coup d’état (pronounced /kuːdeɪˈtɑː/ AHD: [ko͞o"dā tä]), often simply called a coup, is the sudden unconstitutional overthrow of a government by a part — usually small — of the state establishment — usually the military — to replace the branch of the stricken government, either with another civil government or with a military government.
Pity that poor Sandy fails to read the definition that she herself posts, in particular the bit about a coup being "unconstitutional". Ah but there's that pesky Canadian constitution, which permits the opposition parties to do precisely what they are doing. Nevermind...the constitution is clearly Liberal-biased.

And then there's our old dependable hapless Dr. Roy. He who blogs without benefit of reason, original thought, or even a basic spell-checker. He who rants about ethics and crime, while proudly displaying his support for convicted criminal and fraudster Conrad Black.

It's hard to know what exactly Roy would have the Opposition parties do. On the one hand, he mocks the Liberals for their inaction during the last parliament. On the other, he cries "coup d'état" as soon as they oppose King Harper, and refers to them as "enemies" of the Conservatives. A real head-scratcher, that one.

The BT's concerned about an impending 'crisis' would do well to remember that this was entirely Harper's doing. As Howard Elliot wrote in the Spectator:
This country is facing recession. While we're in better shape than many jurisdictions, we can't escape the global slowdown. It's here, and it's going to get worse before it gets better. Harper acknowledged this general sentiment as recently as last weekend and said a deficit might be essential in the name of economic stimulation. But when he had a choice between responsible governance and partisan warfare, he chose the latter. That's a betrayal of public trust, plain and simple.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Mumbai Under Attack

Mumbai has suffered a series of co-ordinated terrorist attacks which have left over 80 dead and hundreds injured. Yet another disgusting and cowardly act against innocent people. Let's hope that the the current crisis is resolved quickly and that the perpetrators are caught and punished severely.

British PM Gordon Brown:
"These outrageous attacks in Mumbai will be met with a vigorous response. I have sent a message to Prime Minister (Manmohan) Singh that the UK stands solidly with his government as they respond, and to offer all necessary help."

Brooke Anderson (Spokesperson for Barack Obama):
"[President-elect Obama] strongly condemns today's terrorist attacks in Mumbai, and his thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families and the people of India. These coordinated attacks on innocent civilians demonstrate the grave and urgent threat of terrorism."

Russian President Dimitry Medvedev:
"We are concerned about the loss of life and consider that acts of terrorism of this type are harmful to the whole international order and are a challenge to humanity,"

Liberal MP Bob Rae:
"Arlene and I will be praying for a safe release of the hostages, and hope that the perpetrators of these horrendous acts of violence are brought to justice. Let me also extend my special concern to all Canadians -- my own family included -- who have a special place in their lives for India and her people."

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Needing A Lift

As American lawmakers contemplate a 25 billion dollar bailout of the Big 3 automakers, and as Canada considers following suit, let's take a moment to consider the absurdity of this situation.

American automakers have for years been committed to producing poorly built gas guzzling monstrosities, and their total failure to anticipate a changing marketplace has finally caught up with them. This isn't rocket science folks, and it's not as though the writing wasn't on the walls for the past, oh, twenty-five years. And now, finally faced with the stark reality that people simply don't want their cars, these free market privateers have turned to the public sector to backstop their ineptitude.

On Friday, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty met with executives from the Big 3 to hear their pitch for a cash infusion.
The presidents of Honda Canada Inc. and Toyota Canada Inc. were also at the meeting. Mr. Bryant stressed that those companies are not facing a liquidity crisis but wanted to ensure that any aid provided to the Detroit Three does not leave Honda and Toyota at a competitive disadvantage.
The Japanese car makers are doing just fine, thank you very much. For decades they have been in the business of making smaller, high quality, fuel-efficient cars. And now, to no one's surprise (except, seemingly, Detroit's) they are on top.

If the prospect of using taxpayer money to bail out bloated dinosaurs like GM isn't frightening enough, ask yourself what our federal and provincial governments are doing to assist enterprising home grown electric automakers like Zenn Motor Cars and Dynasty Electric Vehicles. The answer - nothing.

With the exceptions of the province of Quebec and the municpalities of Vancouver and Oak Bay BC, Zenn electric cars are not even permitted to operate on Canadian streets. Likewise for Dynasty's IT electric cars, whose parent company is being forced to shift production from Delta BC to Pakistan. And if their cars seem a little too...pedestrian, check out California's Tesla Motors, which is now producing the impressive electric Roadster to backlogged demand, and promises to deliver a $60,000 luxury electric sedan by 2010.

Surely these are the automakers that deserve a slice of that 25 billion dollar pie. Let Exxon Mobil bail out GM. If public money is to be spent in the auto industry, let us invest it in the future, and not in the past.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

They Went There

For those of you that had any lingering doubts about whether or not Republicans would resort to the lowest, sleaziest swiftboat ads to derail Obama in the waning days of their miserable lie-filled campaign:

In fairness (and it's hard to be fair to such lowlifes) John McCain did not officially "approve" this ad, as it was released by a GOP political action group. But it does highlight the stunning desperation of the Republicans as McCain's so-called path to the White House becomes increasingly difficult.

On a related topic, who precisely are the "undecided voters"? Have these people not received enough information in the course of this seemingly interminable race to make up their damn minds? There are ONLY TWO CANDIDATES, for Christ's sake! How hard can this possibly be?? CHOOSE!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Flying Low: Another Miserable Week For McCain

Let's take a quick look at the McCain campaign's latest greatest hits, shall we?

Lipstick On A Pig: The RNC disclosed that it spent $150,000 of campaign money (donated by Joe The Idiots everywhere) to buy clothes for Sarah Palin and her family at Saks Fifth Avenue and Nieman Marcus. And the highest paid person in the entire McCain campaign? Amy Strozzi (Palin's make-up stylist) who was paid $22,000 for just 2 weeks work in October, more than McCain's own chief foreign policy advisor Randy Scheunemann.

Crazy Runs In The Family: John McCain's 66 year old baby brother Joe decided to call 911 to complain about traffic.

Operator: 911 state your emergency

McCain: It's not an emergency but do you know why on one side at the damn drawbridge of 95traffic is stopped for 15 minutes and yet traffic's coming the other way?

Operator: Sir, are you calling 911 to complain about traffic? (pause)

McCain: "(Expletive) you." (caller hangs up)

The 911 operator then called McCain back and left a message admonishing him for misusing the emergency service, after which he actually called 911 back to complain again!

The New "Face Of The Campaign":

By now, everyone is aware of the sad, sordid tale of self-mutilating wingnut Ashley Todd. Cruising around Pittsburgh, this dopey McCain campaign worker claimed to have been assaulted by a black Obama supporter who carved a (backwards) "B" into her face. The B, as it turns out, stands for Bullshit. After receiving sympathy calls from both John McCain and Sarah Palin, Todd admitted the whole story was made up. She is now behind bars herself. And, surprise, surprise...the McCain campaign may have been involved in pushing the whole hoax onto the media.

One wonders whether old man McCain even wants to win this thing anymore...

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Why Do French People Hate Quebecers?

Everyone's favourite Mr. Belvedere lookalike and corpulent xenophobe Jacques Parizeau is back in the news. Proving that he has his finger on the pulse of Canada's burning issues, he wonders why do French people hate Quebecers so much?

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to enjoy a bowl of Liberty Onion Soup and a plate of Freedom Fries.

Friday, October 17, 2008

RoboGOP: McCain's New Smear Tactic

So while Grampy McSame was busy telling Bob Schieffer, Barack Obama and millions of Americans that he doesn't really care about an "old washed-up terrorist", his campaign started autodialing said Americans with the following automated message:
Hello. I'm calling for John McCain and the RNC because you need to know that Barack Obama has worked closely with domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, whose organization bombed the U.S. capitol, the Pentagon, a judge's home and killed Americans. And Democrats will enact an extreme leftist agenda if they take control of Washington. Barack Obama and his Democratic allies lack the judgment to lead our country. This call was paid for by McCain-Palin 2008 and the Republican National Committee at 202-863-8500.
Charming, no? It combines the dickishness of character assassination with the douchebaggery of telemarketing. A winning combination for sure!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Presidential Debate #3

This picture basically sums up the debate, and the state of the campaigns.

Pretty much everyone (including the Fox News focus group) is calling this one another win for Obama. Too bad for Grampy McSame and Winky Mainstreet.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Overwhelmingly Underwhelmed

To paraphrase Rick Mercer's analysis:

Disappointment for Stephen Harper; no majority.

Disappointment for Stephane Dion; lost seats and lost Fortress Ontario.

Disappointment for Jack Layton; still in 4th place.

Disappointment for Elizabeth May; lost her riding and no elected MPs.

Satisfaction for Gilles Duceppe; but he's a separatist.

Cost: $300 million.

Estimated voter turnout: less than 60%

HOORAY FOR CANADA!! I'm going to bed.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

You Stay Classy, Luc Harvey.

When the going gets tough, the Conservatives get ugly. Take Luc Harvey. The Conservative incumbent in Louis-Hébert decided to crash a Bloc event in the riding and heckle Gilles Duceppe to the point that the RCMP were asked to move him out of the way.

When asked to explain his less than dignified behaviour, Harvey responded with typical CPC arrogance:
“I'm in my riding here. This is the riding of Louis-Hébert, and this is Luc Harvey's riding,” he said.
Luc Harvey's riding?? In 2006, this petulant cretin won by less than one fifth of one percent, earning a whopping 34.22% of the vote. This time around, predictions are that the Bloc will re-take the riding. Harvey would do well to keep these things in mind as he stomps around, claiming ownership of Louis-Hébert, and generally acting like an ass.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Jeepers Joe-6-Pack, She's A Hockey Mom Doggonit!

Judging from the amount of right-wing self-fellating going on today, I have to conclude the following about what Republicans want in a VP.

A VP should:
  • Wink a lot
  • Enunciate poorly
  • Use empty catch phrases and blue collar jingo in every sentence
  • Use quotes out of context
  • Be able to recite talking points, while demonstrating little to no understanding of issues
  • Lapse into incoherency from time to time
But don't take it from me. Let's hear it straight from Winky Mainstreet:
"That is not so, but because that's just a quick answer, I want to talk about, again, my record on energy versus your ticket's energy ticket, also."
Well said, also.
"One thing that Americans do at this time, also, though, is let's commit ourselves just every day American people, Joe Six Pack, hockey moms across the nation, I think we need to band together and say never again. Never will we be exploited and taken advantage of again by those who are managing our money and loaning us these dollars."
Yes! Damn you, people lending us these...dollars. Doggone it, what'chya need is a team of mavericks who, with, reformin' and also rejiggimifyin' the whole White House thingy. Also! *wink*

Monday, September 29, 2008

Harper "Appears" On Countdown With Keith Olbermann!

Funny little video of Keith Olbermann noticing that not all Junior Nitwits Tories are "standing up" for Canada.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Your Weekend Python

Going up to Whistler for the weekend. Enjoy one of my favourite video clips from Monty Python's Holy Grail, and have a good weekend!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Eyes!! Ze Gogglez...Zey Do Nussing!!

Sweet Mother of God. This woman is borderline retarded.

Bailout healthcare economy stuff with jobs maverick reform and tax maverick Wall Street things and stuff maverick. She talk real good-like!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

WOW. The Stupid, It Burns...

Please watch this nightmarish video of Sarah Palin being interviewed by Katie Couric.

In fairness to the DOS-based Palinbot, there is no actual answer to Couric's question. McCain has been a shameless deregulator his whole career. But we'll eagerly wait for the hockey mom to research even one single example of McOld's "maverickness". Good grief.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Harper's "Ordinary" Canadians

Who are these people anyway? According to Harper, "ordinary" Canadians don't really care about arts and culture.

Harper dismissed mounting criticism of the cuts by calling it a "niche" issue that doesn't resonate with "ordinary" Canadians.

In his strongest statements to date over the cuts, Harper said regular Canadians see a "bunch of people, you know, at a rich gala all subsidized by taxpayers claiming their subsidies aren't high enough, when they know those subsidies have actually gone up."

In a response, Justin Trudeau pointed out that the average salary in the arts industry is $23,000. Rich gala elites indeed.

"Ordinary" Canadians do want 14 year olds jailed for life and meaningless restrictions on house arrest sentencing. For critics of the latter, Harpo had this to say:

“That's who we're listening to, not people who work in ivory towers but people who actually work on the street and deal with crime on a day-to-day basis.”

Of course, those same people who "work on the street" also support the gun registry and the InSite clean needle program. But those folks are probably just closet ivory tower millionaires, so fuck them.

Stephen Harper: getting things done for Canadians, one culture war at a time.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Pushin' Out The Ritz

Here's the new Liberal attack ad, harshly criticizing |Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and the Conservative response to the listeriosis outbreak.

I can't say I'm a big fan of this particular spot. I've never liked negative advertising, although I suppose I understand the reason behind it in this particular case. There's been a lot made of Minister Ritz's insensitive remarks and off-colour joke about Wayne Easter, including a new video game. His comments were flat out stupid, no question. But in and of themselves, they were merely emblematic of a larger problem within the Harper government - that of a fundamental shift towards deregulation.

It's really the inevitable endpoint of continual tax cuts, which must be paid for in some manner. The Harper government has chosen to balance the books by axing, amongst other things, federal regulatory programs, betting that a shift of responsibility to the private sector (in the form of industry self-regulation) would go unnoticed by the public. We've seen this movie before, in Walkerton Ontario under the Harris government, and just recently south of the border. There is a heavy price to be paid for deregulation.

A recent editorial in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) blasted the Conservative government for failing to adequately ensure the integrity of public health.

Harper has called an "independent investigation" into the listeriosis epidemic that has killed at 16 people. But the editors said that under the terms of reference:

  • The investigator will not have the power to subpoena witnesses or documents.
  • The investigation will not be public.
  • There is no commitment to publishing the findings or reporting to Parliament.

Such flaws will make the investigation inferior compared to those that probed Canada's tainted blood scandal, the Walkerton tainted water crisis and the SARS epidemic. Those inquiries made governance and medical recommendations to better protect Canadians, the editorial said.

The Harper government's insistence on allowing private industries to regulate themselves is puzzling, to say the least. Conservatives will argue that industry has an inherent interest in promoting public safety. Crises such as the listeriosis outbreak, they say, will impact public confidence in Maple Leaf Foods and in turn lower profits. As Thomas Walkom points out:
Now, government inspectors in many areas – including meat – do little or no real inspecting. Instead, they rely on companies to monitor themselves and spend most of their time analyzing industry-compiled data.

It's what Harper calls a "joint effort."

The theory behind this is that firms have a long-term incentive to make consumers believe their food is safe.

Which, perhaps, they do. But they also have a powerful incentive to make short-term profits for their shareholders. At times, the two incentives can collide. What Gerry Ritz doesn't seem to understand is that when this happens, the results aren't funny.

Monday, September 15, 2008

And By "Good", I Mean "Bad"

Life must be good when you have seven houses, a multi-millionaire wife, a nitwit running-mate, and legions of the dumbest people on earth to call your "base". This morning, John McCain told a gathering of his supporters that the "fundamentals" of the US economy are strong, while simultaneously vowing to "never put America in this position again".

It's hard to know which part of McCain's statement is more ridiculous. The part where he lauds the rock solid fundamentals of the US economy (which has recently seen the collapse of the housing market and the government bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) on the very day that Lehman Brothers declares bankruptcy, Merrill Lynch is bought by Bank of America, shares of AIG drop 61% and the Dow falls by over 500 points? Or the part where he promises never to return the USA to such a position of market strength?

But then, perhaps McCain needn't worry about appearing out of touch. After all, his VP pick once looked after the budget for the Wasilla town council. And anyways, you get the feeling that knowing sweet fuck-all about the economy probably won't give people like Andy Lacasse a reason to change the sign on his front lawn. Or even correct the spelling.

Monday, September 8, 2008

It's 3am. The Phone Rings. It's Jason Kenney.

Well now that the campaign is on, the Conservatives have started continued doing what they've been doing all along - smearing the opposition with attack ads. Only today, they started early - 6am to be exact. The attempt, of course, was to "control" the media agenda by beating the other parties to the punch. Unfortunately for the CPC, the strategy backfired.

But Monday morning's unveiling of a new series of campaign ads attacking Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion received no live coverage on any of the major national television networks.

Instead, CBC Newsworld cut to the question-and-answer session after the announcement, when Conservative MPs Jason Kenney and Lawrence Cannon faced a series of tough questions.

The pair made no substantive policy announcements, choosing instead to target Mr. Dion and the main plank of his campaign platform, The Green Shift.

I find it more than a little odd that a party so rich and so adept at spin doctoring is also so catastrophically inept at organizing press conferences (anyone remember the infamous fire-escape exit after the RCMP raid?).

Meanwhile, Sweater-Vest Man was out here in Richmond, campaigning in someone's backyard. When asked by a reporter if he would stop in & out financing pending the investigation, he said something to the effect of "we will continue to follow election financing laws as they are currently interpreted and as they have been interpreted in the past". In other words "I'll keep breaking the law until someone's throws my ample ass in jail".

Finally, there's been some discussion over at Red Tory's about Dion's announcement today that, if elected, he would implement a full ban on all assault weapons. While I agree that this is hardly a susbstantive initiative one way or the other, and that Dion runs the risk of re-opening the Gun Registry debate, I would suggest that the real motive behind this announcement is to play into his ongoing attempt to frame this election as a choice between Harper's right wing agenda, and Dion's "kinder, gentler Canada". Forcing gun control onto the agenda will likely widen the urban-rural split, but will help to paint Harper as a Bush-ian extremist (as Dion has already been alluding to). Anyways, it's merely the opening salvo in what promises to be a long campaign on all sides.

Friday, September 5, 2008

GOP Used Stock Photos of "Teh Blacks"

Everyone knows that the Republican Party (the party of old white people) is the best friend of "the coloureds". When the GOP was putting together its video tribute to John McCain, it decided that rather than go out and take pictures of actual African-Americans - they must have assumed it would be dangerous, given the state of America's inner cities - they would simply download them from Sadly, this is not a joke. Go to 6:45 and 7:02 of the video, and check out the pics below. h/t DailyKos

Harper's "Fixed" Election

So now it's all but done. Prime Minister Tubby Lardass will take his smarmy, shit-eating grin to the Governor General this weekend and break his own fixed election date law, a fitting end to his miserable lie-filled governance.

Rex Murphy had to this to say about Harper's latest charade:
It's one thing to take politicians promises with a grain of salt. Mr. Harper is proposing a much sturdier challenge: how to believe them when they take a promise and make it the law of the land, and then ignore it, nullify it, bury that law, just because it suits them.

So the Conservatives will be taking us into another election, running on a record of broken promises, indifference to climate change, stewardship of a declining economy, and possible violations of election financing laws. And, according to the latest polls, this may be good enough to win. Hooray for Canada!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Thoughts On Palin, And The Hypocrisy Of The Right

So, Sarah Failin' Palin gave her big speech to a room full of old white people (aka the RNC) last night, proving once again that Republicans will kill the Mooslems, save your soul, and lower your taxes. And if you disagree, you are obviously a sexist. My thoughts on last night's speech.
  • Palin came across as confident and tough, a stark contrast to McCain.
  • She has an incredibly annoying voice and accent, and if I hear "Eye-Rack" one more time, I'm gonna vomit.
  • She managed to energize a room of old Republicans, itself a difficult task.
  • She avoided going overboard on the loony hardcore Christian stuff, which may not have played well with the evangelicals, but didn't put off independents.
  • Her speech was short on policy specifics, in particular the economy and healthcare.
  • Her attacks on Obama were neither funny nor effective. Making fun of his community organizer roots is not a winning strategy for the former mayor of Wasilla. ("Look at Obama, making a big deal about helping poor Negroes...Ha Ha Ha!") Groan...
  • I was a bit surprised she mentioned the Bridge To Nowhere. This is a weak point for her, as she was originally in favour of it before flip-flopping.
  • It's curious that her supporters are decrying what they perceive as "sexism", while at the same time handing out pins saying "Hottest VP".
  • Overall, despite the fact that I disagree with her on everything, she gave the kind of speech the GOP was hoping she would, and for that she deserves credit. Her real test will come in the following weeks, when she has to think on her feet, facing the media daily and debating the likes of Joe Biden.

Finally, Jon Stewart had a truly inspired segment last night exposing the utter hypocrisy of right wing blowhards. Do yourself a favour, follow the link, and enjoy a good laugh.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Earth To "Celestial Junk": Peggy Noonan Lies

Sometimes, you don't even need to poke fun at the right-wing-o-sphere. Sometimes, they do it to themselves. Paul, churning out the trash at Celestial Junk, slobbers over an article by Peggy Noonan in which she makes an impassioned case for the obvious brilliance of Sarah Palin's selection, the logic behind the decision and the 'danger' she poses to the "American Left". Here's a sample, lifted from Celestial Junk.
I'm bumping into a lot of critics who do not buy the legitimacy of small town mayorship (Palin had two terms in Wasilla, Alaska, population 9,000 or so) and executive as opposed to legislative experience. But executives, even of small towns, run something. There are 262 cities in this country with a population of 100,000 or more. But there are close to a hundred thousand small towns with ten thousand people or less. "You do the math," the conservative pollster Kellyanne Conway told me. "We are a nation of Wasillas, not Chicagos."
America may not be a nation of Chicagos, but neither is it a nation of university grads. So, according to Conway and Noonan, perhaps the best person to lead the USA is a country bumpkin with no foreign policy experience and a high school education. Sound good, Paul?
But the icing on this particular fruitcake is that not only is Noonan's article hilariously stupid, it's also a complete lie. Earlier today, Noonan was caught on a live mic discussing the Palin appointment and letting her true views out. Here's the video, and below is the transcript.

Chuck Todd: Mike Murphy, lots of free advice, we'll see if Steve Schmidt and the boys were watching. We'll find out on your blackberry. Tonight voters will get their chance to hear from Sarah Palin and she will get the chance to show voters she's the right woman for the job Up next, one man who's already convinced and he'll us why Gov. Jon Huntsman.
(cut away)
Peggy Noonan: Yeah.
Mike Murphy: You know, because I come out of the blue swing state governor world: Engler, Whitman, Tommy Thompson, Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush. I mean, these guys -- this is how you win a Texas race, just run it up. And it's not gonna work. And --
PN: It's over.
MM: Still McCain can give a version of the Lieberman speech to do himself some good.
CT: I also think the Palin pick is insulting to Kay Bailey Hutchinson, too.
PN: Saw Kay this morning.
CT: Yeah, she's never looked comfortable about this --
MM: They're all bummed out.
CT: Yeah, I mean is she really the most qualified woman they could have turned to?
PN: The most qualified? No! I think they went for this -- excuse me-- political bullshit about narratives --
CT: Yeah they went to a narrative.
MM: I totally agree.
PN: Every time the Republicans do that, because that's not where they live and it's not what they're good at, they blow it.
MM: You know what's really the worst thing about it? The greatness of McCain is no cynicism, and this is cynical.
CT: This is cynical, and as you called it, gimmicky.
MM: Yeah.

So my question is, who looks more foolish?
a) Peggy Noonan for writing such garbage, then getting caught calling it "bullshit".
b) Paul for eating it up, hook line & sinker
c) Both of the above

I report, you decide.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Welcome To The World's Lamest Convention

Yes folks, it's the Republican National Convention! Hampered by Hurricane Gustav, a controversial and generally unpopular VP pick, and legions of people who would simply rather watch their toenails grow, the RNC is off & limping. Here are some highlights from this ennui-fest.

  • RNC co-chairperson Jo Ann Davidson mistakenly says "The next vice-president of the United States, Sarah Pawlenty!". Wishful thinking, perhaps?

  • Another curious faux-pas came earlier in the day from McCain campaign manager Rick Davis, who referred to Palin as "Governor Failin".

  • Minnesotan congresswoman Michele Bachmann says "Some presidential nominees know more about service than others!", implying that Barack Obama should have gone to Vietnam as a ten year old child.

  • George W Bush adresses the convention via satellite, sparing McCain the spectacle of another embarrasing photo-op.

Someone wake me up when this thing ends.

Monday, September 1, 2008

The Palin Saga

I haven't yet blogged about Sarah Palin because, frankly, all the predictable things to say have been said. Some are decrying her lack of executive experience, foreign policy credentials, and are suggesting that her pick was little more than a naked ploy to win over disaffected Hillary supporters. Others think she is a "game changer", and a clever play to the evangelical base of the Republican party, themselves uncertain about McCain's fudamentalist credentials. These people adore her hard-line support of creationist teaching, the pro-life movement, and abstinence education in schools.

Well, life is a funny thing. Today, Palin announced that her 17 year old unmarried daughter Bristol is 5 months pregnant. Now let me be clear on this: I don't believe that the bedroom antics of Palin's daughter should be used as campaign fodder for political gain by anyone. But as an item of news released by Palin herself, Bristol's pregnancy should draw attention to the unquestionable absurdity and laughable folly of "abstinence-only education". In fact, a U.S. government report in 2007 supported the notion that abstinence-only sex ed just doesn't work.

By the by, Obama has already released a statement about this story, stating unequivocally that all candidates' children should be "off limits". Agreed.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Tories Kill Unborn Private Member's Bill

Fetus fetishists have to be doubly disappointed today. Not only did Dear Leader turn his back on the cause of fetal rights, he did so by aborting a defenseless unborn private member's bill.
Justice Minister Rob Nicholson announced Monday that the government will draft a new bill to replace Bill C-484, the Unborn Victims of Crime Act, so that it closes the debate about fetal rights and focuses instead on penalizing criminals who harm pregnant women.
So the door is closed on fetal rights. But what about the rights of unborn bills? Who speaks for them? C-484 was well into its 3rd trimester (having passed second reading this spring), which would technically make this a late term abortion. Only a ruthless hypocrite like Stephen Harper could so mercilessly trample on his 'base' by simultaneously robbing fetuses and unborn bills of their God-given right to life. For shame.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tony Clement's Junk(ie) Mail

Resident's of Vancouver's impoverished downtown east-side recently started receiving flyers from the Conservatives promising to rid Canadian streets from the plague of "The Junkies" (cue the ominous music). In a truly Reaganesque demonstration of ignorance, Health Minister and general dumbass Tony Clement has determined that Vancouver's Insite safe injection centre for drug addicts is "unethical" and the start of a "slippery slope". Mental midgets like Clement don't often let facts interfere with their thought process.

Clement's recent attack on Insite has prompted swift rebuke from those who actually know a thing or two about medicine - doctors.

“As an expression of somebody who calls himself a minister of health, it's a very unhealthy statement,” [Insite physician Dr. Gabor] Mate said.

“The repugnant aspect is his attack on the morality and ethics of human beings who are trying to work with a very difficult population.

“I mean where does he come off? Where does he appoint himself as a moral judge of professionals who he doesn't understand and knows nothing about?”

Indeed. CMA President Dr. Brian Day has also chimed in, stating that 79% of CMA members believe that programs like Insite (which promote harm reduction) work. Yet Clement and the collective braintrust (and I use that word very lightly) of the CPC continue to susbscribe to the fantasy that the scourge of drug addiction can simply be eradicated by stiffer jail terms and tougher policing.

The flyers, approved by the PMO, promised to "clean up drug crime" and went one step further, claiming that "the Liberal dark decade is over".

“Too many Canadians have seen the ugly face of drug crime,” the double-sided page sent from the local MP declares.

Hmmm. The only ugly face I see is that of Stephen Harper. Go figure.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Asbestos: Our Secret Shame

Although it appears to have escaped wider attention, Canada has been playing a shameful role on the international scene with regards to the asbestos market. The Rotterdam Convention, adopted in 1998, exists to promote health and protect against the harm caused by certain chemicals and pesticides.
...the Rotterdam Convention gives countries the right to be informed about, and to refuse, extremely hazardous chemicals and pesticides.

After a rigorous scientific and legal process, a panel of experts (the chemical review committee) determines whether a particular chemical is so dangerous that it is a threat to public health and has already been banned or severely restricted by various countries.

If so, the experts call for the chemical to be placed on a list of substances that cannot be exported to another country without first obtaining the "prior informed consent" of that country. This means countries must be informed of the dangers and have the right to refuse the product.

Sounds reasonable, no? But, for the past two years, Canada has been blocking attempts by the committee to place chrysotile asbestos on that list.
Canada has been the world's third biggest exporter of asbestos in the past century. Today, asbestos is a dying industry with one last asbestos company in Quebec and about 700 asbestos miners. Yet, because of its friendly relationship with the asbestos industry and because of its concern over losing votes in Quebec, the government is destroying a convention that is desperately needed to protect people in developing countries from deadly chemicals.

Although some debate exists about the level of carcinogenicity of pure chrysotile asbestos, the Canadian Cancer Society supports the Rotterdam Convention, and has adopted the position that countries importing asbestos from Canada ought to be informed of the potential health hazards. Our opposition to adding asbestos to the PIC list puts us in some distinguished company, along with India, Krygyzstan, Iran, Peru, and the Russian Federation.

Why does our government insist on supporting the asbestos industry at the expense of some of the most impoverished labourers in the developing world? Surely federal money spent on marketing and support of the industry could be better used for retraining our remaining asbestos workers. After the Conservative's much ballyhooed Consumer Products Safety Act, our government's continued support of unfettered asbestos export is nothing short of hypocrisy, and a stain on our international reputation.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Shady Business As Usual

Today, major newspapers are reporting that the Conservatives may be attempting to derail the Ethics Committee's inquiry into the In & Out scandal by discouraging key witnesses from attending.

The official agent for a Conservative candidate in Toronto told The Canadian Press on Tuesday that he and other potential witnesses were told by an organizer for the federal party as late as Monday that they didn't have to testify at the inquiry if they didn't want to.

Douglas Lowry said the organizer, whom he named as Carmen McGregor, gave the advice after he and others received summonses from the Commons ethics committee.

“We've all been told,” Mr. Lowry said.

I don't know if it's true, but it's certainly easy to believe. I only wonder how long it will take for the Conservatives to blame these allegations of impropriety on the Liberals...
[Conservative MP Gary Goodyear] said Szabo's suggestion that something is amiss is just further evidence that this is a “partisan forum” and described the hearings as an “illegal” process.
Ahhh....and there it is. Your Conservative government, ladies and gentlemen: governing from the bottom down.

Update: A good review of the Ethics Committee shadiness over at Liberal Arts & Minds.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Aborted Logic

Over at Blue Like You, Joanne (having some time ago completed her "Journey"), is plenty miffed about Dr. Henry Morgantaler's challenge to abortion funding restrictions in New Brunswick. You see, in every province but New Brunswick, elective abortions are publicly funded procedures. Strange, since a full 70% of the 33 respondents to Joanne's recent Poll of Polls favour "some kind of abortion law".

Stranger still, since a recent poll of 4 of my friends showed 100% of respondents in favour of closing the books on the abortion debate. Math is hard.

Anyways, regardless of your views on the choice vs life debate, you have to marvel at the complete absence of intellect by Joanne's commenter "Ed the Hun" who wonders:

Of course the irony to me is that the left (who so FULLY supports Morgentaler) are contradicting their own stance regarding NO PRIVATE HEALTHCARE.

Isn’t Morgentaler’s clinic ‘private’ (as in not part of the publickly [sic] owned) and isn’t what he is asking no different than if someone were to open a clinic in Alberta where you might go to get a hernia repaired for example and the bill is paid by the Alberta Government?

To which Joanne dutifully replies: "Good question, Ed".

Good question?? Is she joking?? Sadly, probably not. Ed and Joanne, I know it's tough, but try to follow here. Morgantaler is fighting for public funding for abortions in NB. Currently, women who wish elective abortions must pay out-of-pocket, which he believes represents an unwarranted barrier to access. Those who support Morgantaler support his challenge against private-pay abortions. So no contradiction exists, despite the tortured logic you invoke to try to make it so. Clear? Good.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

What a Rush

First off, apologies for my absence the past few weeks. Work was especially busy, and had to take priority over blogging. Anyhoo, I'm back.

I've noticed some of our conservative blogging colleagues high-fiving each other over Rush Limbaugh's 20th anniversary as a conservative syndicated radio host. Let's look back at some of Rush's greatest moments.

"Have you ever noticed how all composite pictures of wanted criminals resemble Jesse Jackson?"

NAACP should have riot rehearsal. They should get a liquor store and practice robberies."

"This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation, and we're going to ruin people's lives over it, and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time." - On the Abu Ghraib Prison Abuse Scandal (3 May 2004)

"He is exaggerating the effects of the disease. He's moving all around and shaking and it's purely an act... This is really shameless of Michael J Fox. Either he didn't take his medication or he's acting." - About Fox's Parkinson's Disease, referring to his appearance in Missouri Democratic Senate candidate Claire McCaskill's political ad (23 October 2006)

"I am addicted to prescription pain medication."

Happy 20th, douchebag.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

No Intelligence....Period.

Congratulations to Ben Stein on his fraudumentary, "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed"! It managed to garner a full 8% on the Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer.
Here's a sampling of the rave reviews that have been pouring in:

The movie itself is an example of design by faith and emotion rather than intelligence, defined as rationality grounded in proof. -The Chicago Sun-Times

One of the sleaziest documentaries to arrive in a very long time, Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed is a conspiracy-theory rant masquerading as investigative inquiry. -The New York Times

For a film about American freedom of expression and the necessity for open dialogue, it's hard to imagine Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed being more one-sided, narrow-minded, and intellectually dishonest. -Slant Magazine

This film is an appallingly unscrupulous example of hack propaganda and it sucketh mightily. What's more, I didn't laugh once. -The Globe & Mail

If someone believes in the Tooth Fairy, can they complain about not being taken seriously at dental school? -Jam!Movies

Oh SNAP!! Way to go Ben! Reviews like that have helped propel this piece of shit insightful little film past previous Academy giants like Christmas with the Kranks. Stein still has a ways to go , however, if he wants to get the kind of critical acclaim afforded to masterpieces such as Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo, which pulled off an impressive 11% on the Tomatometer, or Tom Arnold's laugh-fest The Stupids, which earned a remarkable 23% rating.

Dare to dream, Ben!

UPDATE: By way of commenter Bruce and our friend Red Tory, some hilarious opening weekend numbers.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Dr. Roy: When "Anumals Stirke"

I know, I know....low hanging fruit and all. But I just couldn't help posting this latest bit of hilarity from the eternally mudfortunate Dr. Roy, on his recent trip to "leftist Berkley (sic)". What a maroon.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Full Metal Pantsuit

She fought hard. She fought long. But in the end, Hillary Clinton was simply unable to catch Barack Obama. Although her most ardent supporters will point accusatory fingers at the media and the DNC, the reality is that her campaign was flawed from the very beginning. At the outset, she suffered from the complacency and arrogance that accompanied her frontrunner status. Everyone assumed the nomination was Clinton's to lose. And lose it she did. Her greatest strength was supposed to be her experience. But Obama smartly picked up on voter disdain for eight years of Bush and Cheney, and delivered a promise of "change". His youth and inexperience suddenly became virtues. Hillary, on the other hand, was transformed into a representative of the old guard. While the Clinton campaign focussed on a "big state" strategy, Obama plugged away in smaller states, midwest states, and caucus states. His grassroots level fundraising was a resounding success. And by the time Hillary's team had figured all of this out, Super Tuesday was over, and Obama had a delegate lead he would never relinquish.

Now the only question is: will she be the veep?

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Meet The World's Dumbest Democrats

Some supporters of Hillary Clinton's campaign have become so rabid in their pursuit of the nomination, that they have checked their brains at the door.

As members of the Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws panel voted in favor of the measures, some supporters of Hillary Clinton's White House bid rose from their seats and began to shout “Don’t steal my vote!” and “Let’s go, McCain!”
These primaries have certainly strained unity within the Democratic Party. But anyone who would consider voting Republican if Hillary fails to secure the nomination is beyond stupid. What could their rationale possibly be? Do they intend to fight against perceived misogyny by voting for an old conservative white guy? Are they so blind in their ambition that they would rather see four more years of Republican rule than support Barack Obama? These are the kind of people that neither campaign needs - the kind of people who allow spite to triumph over reason.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Bernier Put Out Of His Misery! (and ours)

Maxime Bernier has officially resigned! It's the only thing he successfully accomplished during his time in cabinet. Now he can spend more quality time at biker bars. Bitchin'!

He'll be replaced by the unelected David Emerson (Foreign Affairs), and the vacuous Josee Verner (Francophonie). Emerson will only be appointed on an interim basis, so there's still hope for Rob Anders to complete the Circle of Embarassment at Foreign Affairs. Fingers crossed!!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Put Bernier Out Of His Misery!

Maxime Bernier should take a lesson from Rob Anders. When you're galactically stupid, it's best to just keep your mouth shut.

Our 'mimbo' of a Foreign Affairs Minister with a penchant for dating busty biker babes has managed to stick his foot in his mouth yet again.
On Wednesday, Mr. Bernier pledged a C-17 to transport World Food Program helicopters to Bangkok for use in aiding Myanmar as it recovers from an early May cyclone. It was a promise, sources said, that surprised Defence officials because no lifters could do the job. All four C-17s are currently unavailable, two of them because they've broken down. ...It also turns out the C-17 would not likely have been able to do the job Mr. Bernier pledged it for even if it had been available.
Yep. Bernier's about as dumb as they come. Oh, and the government that once berated the Liberals for renting heavy-lift aircraft did in fact manage to secure transport for the WFP renting a Russian Antonov for almost 1 million dollars.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

So Long, Turd Blossom

Bearded wonder and NAFTA-gate blabbermouth Ian Brodie is stepping down from his post as Stephen Harper's chief asslicker. He's apparently giving up his position because of a sudden desire to teach at UWO. Uh huh.
But the decision comes just ahead of the release of an investigative report into "NAFTA-gate," the leak of sensitive diplomatic information that made headlines on both sides of the border, embarrassed Harper and his government and possibly undercut Canada's dealings with the future president.
The Star has learned that Brodie will be replaced by former Mike Harris staffer Guy Giorno. I wonder who leaked that bit of information to them?