Thursday, December 31, 2009

THAT HIPPY HARPER...


From my buddy burlivespipe, a clever ditty to the music of Petula Clark's Downtown...


"When promises are broke
And parliament's missing the joke
You can always close - Prorogue!
If you've got committees
Making noise and getting sniffy
There's no better time - Prorogue!

Just listen to the talking points echo on Chas. Adler
Linger on that Liberals did it -is it any badder?
How can you lose?

The truth is no problem then
Forget about Geneva and do photo ops again and again
and go
Prorogue! Things'll be better when you
Prorogue! You're not accountable if you
Prorogue! The GG's waiting for you....

Why hang around
when Fox News ain't on the ground
and Olympic hockey's on? Prorogue!
The budget's blown and Obama won't phone
So tell the media where to go - Prorogue!

No one's accountable if no one's there
To watch you
Just act like nothing's wrong while Jimbo fumbles with his new shoes
What are they gonna do?

Those bills will just wait for you then,
Election promises cancelled by king's pen
Prorogue! Things'll be great when you
Prorogue! You're not accountable
Prorogue! The GG's waiting for you...."

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

DERELICTION OF DUTY




















With the convenient cover of Team Canada's hockey guardians, Stephen Harper has busted democracy's chops once more for his own personal gain.
With only the bare-thin lie of 'needing the time to make an economic plan' as its rationale, the CONs continue to push that 'the Liberals did it too!' filibuster.
As Maclean's editor and neo-conservative journalist Andrew Coyne sees it, the only possible purpose to play a second prorogation card in 13 months is to avoid having to comply with an order to produce documents regarding the Afghanistan detainee issue. Only the bleeting, bias sheeple of the CONbot nation could argue the point.
It means scraping bills that have been tabled and laws that were within a few hours of discourse from being enacted -- so much for 'getting things done', including some key law-and-order items.
Sure, Harper will be able to reshape the Senate with a few more loyal potted plants, flaunting his past principle one more time in the process. He'll also be able to allow time to distract Canadians' attention and diffuse some of the opposition's fire over what is truly a black mark on Canada's reputation on the World stage.
It's been an effective tool -- whether through the process of litigation (on the Cadman tape affair), refusing to answer to the will of parliament and even promoting faux arguments of anti-democratic coups (despite his own previous open flirting with the 'evil Bloc' for an exact same scenario).
In the end, Harper is playing Canadians for fools. With the support of the 'channel-changing' minions controlling too many pieces of the mainstream media, and our unstoppable apathy, it is likely a plan that will work.
I'm just waiting for one of Harper's foot soldiers to complain to the media about the opposition's ire over this latest move: "Liberals and NDP don't support Shea Weber*!"

* fill in applicable hockey player's name according to region.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

HORSE EATS HAT


It's time to see the CONbots demonstrate their contortionist skills again.
Turning black ink into red, wholloping seniors with a heavy tax, and stocking every crevice of the senate with unqualified CON deadbeats wasn't enough.
Now, they're about to see the benefits of Dion's Green Shift, courtesy of not-a-leader Harper... As usual, he's dumped any formal pretense of principle for the so-leader-like shrug of a meek carpetbagger -- 'Yeah, but what are you gonna do?'

It should get pretty interesting in those behind-doors CON meetings out west.

MOCK DUCK MEETS KETTLE...


... but when it's Stephen Harper, you shouldn't expect anything else.
He belches in public, then whines when anyone complains. He bellows in public, then attempts to shame those who do the same.
The international stage is no place for national quibbles, he mused in his annual pre-prorogation address. Of course, unless it's Harper doing the quibbling.
'Hey, don't dare be partisan on my partisan watch,' the desperately-trying-to-get-a-photo-op Harper implied.
Nice to see others starting to see him and his 'mock duck' act for what it is.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A STAR IS BORN...


Funny how that works.
I don't remember other medical doctors becoming the face of a possible pandemic, but then again there aren't too many doctors like Canada's David Butler-Jones.
Like many physicians, Butler-Jones oozes confidence. He's established a credibility that is meant to comfort us, yet almost seems to the level of being more than a little self-aware of his impact. Again, I don't recall someone trying to be the face of the battle against SARS, Mad Cow Disease or even Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
Of course, it really helps when your so-called "real" leader abhors being held accountable. Just the passing chance that he could have to be responsible for something, say like standing up and announcing that he'll be getting a vaccination in front of the cameras (just as the cameras record his every breathing glorious moment for the 2010 CONserfative government calendar) probably put him in the mood to pound out 'Help!' except there were no cameras around to record it.
So what does an unaccountable, frightened of responsibility kind of guy do? He gets someone else to take his place. In this case, it's Dr. David Butler-Jones.
I don't know if the good Dr. has political aspirations, but he certainly has a good TV-side manner, a Canadian Marcus Welby, with the cuddly factor of Bob Keeshan. Perhaps Harper is grooming him for a Toronto-area riding, where 'cancer is sexy' needs a makeover. Remember Lisa, Harper is accountable to no one.
Thankfully for all, the pandemic appears to be not what we feared. Neither the public nor Harper's.
I'm eagerly awaiting the good Doctor's public service message on 'skin tags' next...

Monday, December 14, 2009

CRACKS IN HARPER'S COALITION...


...of the unaccountable?
With these corporations miffed at his decision to let in Egyptian company Globallive to compete in the cell phone market, there is some unhappiness from Rogers, Bell and Telus -- corporations who've been towing the line and cheering Harper's promise of 'business-friendly hidden changes'.
Now there's these: The rest of the world pretty much in agreement - Canada's government is acting irresponsible when it comes to acting on the environment.

- Unlike the U.S., Canada has no concrete game plan for achieving its targets.

- Former PM Paul Martin (the one who could balance a budget, remember the good ol' days?) says Canada needs to get U.S. to share some of the burden of oilsands ugliness.

- Premiers of Canada's two largest provinces demand that the 'rest' of Canada make same kind of environmental targets that they've set.

With pressure on Canada to act, and a verbal game of chicken by our so-called leader, who has tied his slow-footed action with the U.S., oil executives are feeling the heat whenever Harper makes like he's taking glacier-like steps towards doing the will of the people. No doubt, big oil has Harper's ear. But they also know that popular opinion outside Alberta is that we're not doing enough.
Unlike Harper's role model GWB, Canada's prime minister is not afraid to be a divider, not a uniter. He'll be happy to attack Ontario and Quebec just as he stiff-armed Atlantic Canada just because he could. Unfortunately, there's all those votes...

And for a great piece on the CON's choke chain and who's holding it, check out this story.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

PAGING ALAN SMITHEE!


Who's Alan Smithee, you say?
He's the fictitious director whom is called upon to take the credit when a real director, due to usually having had his film cut and edited by a meddling (but occasionally well-intentioned) producer, pulls his name off the picture.
Now that so-called leader Stephen Harper has requested an additional $1.7 Million to cover video and communications budgetary overruns, it's time that Canadians get a say in who should be directing the action* (or non-action, in Copenhagen, Kyoto and any environmentally accountable state)...
Wasting money isn't a problem when its all about Harper's image. Personally, I think the only living director who could keep up with the turns, twists and mounting costs would be Michael Cimino, he of the legendary Heaven's Gate fiasco. But with the way Harper's blown through Canada's surplus, perhaps disaster king Roland Emmerich (who's 2012 has provided a Harperesque apocalypse to the free world) is the man for the job.
Now, if he was still alive, I think the one who's real calling was meant to cover the life and times of Harper and his band of secreters is Edward D. Wood Jr. and his cashmire sweaters -- I'm certain they come in Baird and Moore sizes.
Really, do Canadians know what is going on in Ottawa?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

CREATIVE WRITING...


...or is it another episode of as the leadership turns?
There is no actual evidence to suggest the writer wasn't suffering the consequences of too many acid trips, wants to treat his wife with the Christmas present of a lifetime -- a senate seat for 8* years -- or has a really dull imagination.
While all things Liberal seem to be where the fun stories emerge, one who once believed that journalism was an honourable profession is now full of 'hit-for-hire' scribblers and 'do-anything-for-promotion' mediocrities.
Yes, I know. Whining about the media wasn't chic when they seemed too focused on the CONs and their leadership trivolties; its no more useful these days.
But perhaps a good question for inquisitive and really earnest journalists to ponder is, while Liberals may be questioning their leader's choice to back a policy which could be unpopular among the masses (even though he is being consistent - hey, even I'm on record as saying the Liberals should have opposed the HST), but where is the conscious of the CONservative party and its members these days?
They sit silently in B.C. and Ontario on the HST matter. They ape despicable talking points to slime a high ranking bureaucrat and do not stand up and say they support the Geneva Convention's law against torture.
Instead, they weave their spider's web, redact any and all federal documents that may reveal the truth, and share it only with those who share their rationale that the end always justifies the means. Just don't ask them to stand up and say what that 'mean' is. Perhaps we'll all be happy when Canada really becomes Alberta, services cut to the bone, honest, intelligent debate is rarely welcomed, and money is king, queen and Lord.
So Angelo, where are those men and women who are suppose to represent Canada and Canadians to the best of their abilities?
Paging Dr. Faust...



*actual service time will vary; CON-approved members reserve the right to disavow such a promise should the government on their 8th anniversary be of other than the CON party; or if they just don't want to quit.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

HARPOCRISY, RE DUX...


Finally breaking free from his full sprint away from accountability and now safely away from any possible examination of the truth, so-called leader and PM Stephen Harper fired a long-distanceshot at the opposition today, suggesting that "some in the political arena do not hesitate before throwing the most serious of allegations at our men and women in uniform, based on the most flimsy of evidence..."
Funny thing is, the opposition's focus has been squarely on Harper's government and their hiding of the facts. But when it comes to "throwing the most serious of allegations", especially off-base lies, despicable and partisan type, few can match up with our man Harper. A CON of the people.

Friday, November 27, 2009

ANTI-CONSISTENT


After hearing B.C. premier Gordon Campbell's blanket plea for all federal parties to support Stephen Harper's Harmonized Sales Tax in Ontario and B.C., I wonder where was his impassioned, or even straight-forward plea to have the Harper CONs stand and support the Kelowna Accord?
I'm hearing crickets...
As an issue, the HST played a big role in the NDP's byelection win in New Westminster-Coquitlam, while it remains a hot-button issue on talk radio in both B.C. and Ontario. Harper has amazingly been able to dangle the cash and thus incentive for former opponents to step up bashfully and take the bait. That doesn't mean Ignatieff needs to tie his fate to his provincial cousins -- which may be a stretch with the small-c conservative nature of Campbell's B.C. Liberals.
If he were to run now, Campbell would have trouble winning his own seat and would definitely go down in defeat. Small business is up in arms over the HST. Just as Harper lied during the 2008 election debate about a deficit in a recession, having hidden the fact that the government's pocketbook was already in the red, he has lied about his role in implementing the HST. But now the mask is off.
Hit him with your best shot and shoot down the HST.

IT'S A GIMME...


... but we'll have to wait for the official decision by Michael Ignatieff. If he doesn't take the small risk and stand up against Stephen Harper's new taxation during a recession, then as Liberals we need to be ready for a long cold decade in opposition.
We have to take this issue -- the harmonizing of federal-provincial taxes in Ontario and B.C. -- and realize the public is right.
Harper has for most intent purposes been able to push the blame on the HST onto the premiers, until now.
Vote against the HST Mr. Ignatieff -- any small hit you take from the premiers will be outweighed by overwhelming relief gained through the majority of small businesses and general public.
Then use Harper's stance on pro-tax into the next election.
Easy as pie.

STANDING UP FOR AMBIVALENCE...


The right move for all the wrong reasons, Mr. so-called leader. Perhaps worrying about how his blogging tinhats will take this, when they stop frothing about that trumped up 'climategate' right-wing daisy chain. When do we start running the "Just Following" ad campaign?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART...


They've kept it underwraps, hidden the entrails and covered its tracks, but the cold-hearted CON beast isn't satisfied with handing out economic stimulus novelty cheque giveaways to friends and allies.
Nova Scotian MP Gerald Keddy teased Canadians with just a taste of that famous CON attitude for the lazy unfortunate, calling them "no-good bastards" in a newspaper interview with the Halifax Chronicle-Herald.
Taking a page from that warm-and-fuzzy depression era Tory leader R.B. Bennett and his laissez-faire government, Keddy tore a strip off those who let the economic downturn turn their smiles upside down, dusting off the hidden (but ready for the Retrovolution) CON iron heel.
And cheering him on was a good portion of the CONbot nation -- check the comments in the CTV link above. Perhaps they can hold a 'No Grey Poupon For You!' rally inside the mansion gates to rub it in a little more.

Monday, November 23, 2009

COLONEL'S SECRET RECIPE...



Despite his two left feet, a profundity of talking tough, a new-found interest in shining "light into dark corners*" and generally acting with disdain for the public, Stephen Harper claims to be man of action.
He's all for tough love, serious punishment and big assignments for our men and women in uniform -- just don't ask him to stand behind them when the heat's on.
So it came as a shock -- a SHOCK! -- to see that while the heat lamp of political debate was turned brightly onto the front row of Harper's CON bench, he was no where in sight.
The so-called leader was across the street for a 'critical' meeting with members of Canada's national lacrosse team, sharing long-stick tips and doing research on his next book in the queue, "Lacrosse Is A Game I've Seen, Too."
So, perhaps we should ask him if he prefers to do the chicken dance with the lights on or the lights off?

*Depending upon who's shining light upon whom.

A MASTER OF HORROR...


...but a real gentleman -- I'm obviously not referring to our so-called leader Harper.
No, just a sidetrip salute to Boris Karloff, who would be celebrating his 122nd birthday today. The grand master of Horror could play any role and enliven any script with his subtle, tender-yet-rattling delivery.
From October (Frankenstein, The Mummy) to December (The Grinch Who Stole Christmas) its a veritable Karloff-copia of great moments in pop culture, with Bobby Pickett's tribute/impersonation hit 'The Monster Mash' to too many films and TV shows to mention. Many good bloggers are sharing their thoughts and memories of Boris (who was treading Canadian stages when he came up with the handle 'Boris Karloff' to take as his own)... So if you want a brief respite from the horrors of CON-serfative governance, here's a true master who knew that good always triumphs over evil.


Frankensteinia
The Incredible Invasion
Greenbriar Pictures
Karloff & the Macy's Day Parade
Karloff's Leading Ladies

DUCK AND COVER, EPISODE #31...


Good thing Stephen Harper and his CON government had delayed action on this old promise until they needed a good distraction -- as noted from this editorial from that 'Liberal bastion' of Prince Albert.
If I was a CON supporter, I'd be wondering what they are holding back to throw out when the real s**t hits the fan...

Friday, November 20, 2009

CIRCLE THE SQUARE...


Which gov't has twisted itself in a pretzel trying to avoid any responsibility -- starting with 'current transfer agreement is fine and you're a taliban-lover for asking', to 'there is no torture going on in afghanistan (and a recession is evolutionary implausible in these running shoes) and did I say sponsorship scandal?'; the Harper team then shifted slowly to 'we have a new transfer agreement, implemented because of some concerns that we will pretend don't exist', to now 'the people who advised of making the new transfer agreement and don't understand ixnay on the orture-tay are whacked but just dandy for our washington desk'... Bring on the public inquiry and maybe you can get Mackenzie King's seance tossed into the whole tangled mess. Perhaps Harper can try and bribe an ill witness to tie up this whole mess and be done with it...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

HELLO, NEWMAN...


But this Newman hits it right on the mark when it comes to what ails today's Canadian parliament. It's the soup-nazi-like resolve of so-called leader Harper, whose only broth is boiled in deception, lies and broken ethics.
I can just imagine the huffery and puffery that his one-time colleague but no-time equal Mike 'I'm all right jack' Duffy (who is surprisingly more like Seinfeld's Newman) would respond with.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

INERTIA AT WORK...


Another shameful abdication of responsibility, brought to you by so-called leader Harper and his half-wits. If you think Canadians can handle the heavy lifting to help make the world less polluted, more liveable for today's and tomorrow's generations, I bring you this classic ad.





Of course, if you thought Canadians were interested in fiscally responsible yet compassionate government, the CONs again reject honest and open discussion on their plans and actions.
The generations of today and tomorrow will have to pay the piper for Harper's irresponsibility. But do we have to reach the narcissist's promise of not recognizing Canada when he's finished?

ANOTHER GOOD ARGUMENT...


For the gun registry. There was that hilarious 'Peter van Loan at the stake' media scrum last week that caught the minister in a CON fib, and now this. Some members of the media are taking their jobs seriously...

Monday, November 16, 2009

THE GANG'S ALL HERE...


If there was any doubt that, just as his senate appointments have shown, Harper takes governing as a part-time job to his campaigning, there's this.
Nothing says fiscal responsibility in a time of crisis like flying a dozen or two nobodies across a couple of oceans for their own ethnic photo-ops to send back home. Does he think Canadian taxpayers are all slumdog millionaires?

Monday, November 9, 2009

RUNNING ON EMPTY...


...continues to be standard Harper operating procedure when it comes to his candidates and their lack of 'candor'.
Diana Dilworth would appear to be a decent person who would be a good example of whom a political party would want to have carrying the torch in a competitive race. With a decent profile as a businesswoman and a politician, having achieved all that while also juggling the tough responsibilities of a single parent, Dilworth should be able to walk and chew gum and be more than just a pop-up doll.
Unfortunately, the voters of New Westminster-Coquitlam will never know. Harper has insulated her in one of his 'cones of silence' that proved adequate enough to get Dona Cadman and Nina Grewal elected (and thankfully unsuccessful with more than a dozen more to my knowledge of silent bobs and bobettes), where public appearances and opportunities to really engage in a volley of ideas with rivals, supporters and non-supporters alike are verboten.
Dilworth ducked two all-candidates meetings; she dodged other newspapers' attempts at getting her on the record. When BC's unemployment rate has ratcheted up another notch and there's this thing called H1N1 spinning around, she stands behind the tired-and-true Tory con-points about the electorate are really only talking about crime and punishment, the economy and security.
Now, I don't want to deride Ms Dilworth beyond the colours she has chosen to carry. I don't know her despite living not far down the road from her and being fairly interested in municipal politics. Her profile appears to be a notch-better than last year's 'prize CON candidate', one-time school marm and current CON senator-on-tour Yonah Martin (I'd like to see her spending and attendance record). But when someone who is suppose to be vying to be the elected representative for a region, a person who will have to stand up for and speak on behalf of people who supported her and also those who didn't, it doesn't give me much confidence in our political system when the same 'hopeful' deems it unnecessary to speak before and debate in front of a gym of the public, on the basis that (as her campaign manager states) it isn't a "credible venue for citizens to find out what the candidates are all about."
I'd say if that's the opinion of Ms. Dilworth, she is a failure on the credibility gap herself.
We Liberals can be very proud with the campaign that Ken Beck Lee has run; not a politician, he's brought a fresh approach and shown to be a keen learner when it comes to tackling the hard chore of making strangers like you in quick-time -- and despite knocking on more than 10,000 doors, he's still using the same pair of shoes!
The NDP's Fin Donnelly is the front runner, having built up his profile over the past 14 years by swimming the Fraser, running and winning a seat on Coquitlam council, and following that by being a fairly empty shirt when it comes to getting things done. As someone who brings nice environmental credentials to city hall, Donnelly has accomplished little, and while the odds are stacked against him there, he hasn't even elevated his cause. Two cases in point - the quick clearcut of swaths of Burke Mtn for future development (of which much of it won't be started for a few years - but at least they razed every tree so that we can see the dirt now!) and the annual problem of garbage bears - why hasn't he stepped up and demanded that the city, province and feds get together and move/replenish the bears' natural food source in nearby valleys to keep more of the hungry bruins on the other side of the mountain?!
Rebecca Helps is a fine person, wrong party. If you're really serious about the environment as an issue, join a party that can get you at the table, and change it from within.
The citizens of New Westminster-Coquitlam (and southern portion of Port Moody) will decide who will represent them tonight. Here's hoping that the one who thought a coffee clatch was more important than a public debate gets to stay home.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

THE EMPEROR'S NEW CLOTHING LINE, COMPLETE WITH ACCESSORIES


Shouldn't people who are fiscally responsible be up in arms about this?
It's not bad enough that we're paying to dress the fat slob -- while no doubt providing a stipend for psychic duties too (if El Presidento Harper would let us know how much the public is paying for it, that is) -- but now we've got a photo service for him, too.
Mr Desmond, you're ready for your closeup...

Friday, November 6, 2009

DON'T THANK ME, THANK YOURSELF...


Another infrastructure project brought to you by taxpayers of Canada and the resplendent work of your CON member of parliament.
Cocktails, napkins and signage gratefully provided contractually required by the municipal taxpayers.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

FEAR AND LOATHING...


The opposition is being told that questions about problems with the government's H1N1 response are 'politicizing a life and death issue'. Even members of the media are picking up this theme, taking on FoxNews-like deference to the members of Stephen Harper's shadowy cabinet.
I remember one 'life-and-death' issue that was politicized and how that turned out, and it wasn't that long ago.
If you recall, Chalk River was being forced to shut down so that serious repairs and promised but not completed maintenance could be done. The former president of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission lost her job because of her position, which didn't wash with Harper's special plans. What argument did Harper and his honchos use to get the opposition online? That the shutdown would cost lives, it would create suffering. The CONs got their way by using fear and dishonesty. Despite numerous red flags at the time in how the government proceeded, how it pitched Linda Keen as a malicious partisan, the opposition bent and gave its consent. How did that turn out? Oh yeah, Chalk River broke down not much later, at which point the government essentially said "It's no big deal -- now we need to privatize."
I wonder why that episode of 'politicizing' an issue isn't being raised in comparison. But then again, I do see a reoccurring trait to all these: when the heat gets hot, Harper leaves it to his underlings to handle. Unlike most leaders of a country, he hasn't even manned up for a vaccination to steady the nation's nerves.
Some leader.

THE BEST LAID PLANS OF MICE...


Let me get this straight, Stephen Harper and his CON government had time to plan both a floor-crossing and putting a bagman into the senate and immediately into the cabinet before their first day in office; they were able to plan a huge, orchestrated stimulus program in less than a month despite taking the country to the brink of a political crisis by denying the need of such action -- then they tacked on a plan where giant cheques with MPs signatures, a few mugshots and party logos would be circulated just as a massive advertising campaign for the so-called Action Plan flooded the public airwaves and media.
But in all the time they've been in office, besides flushing away the nation's rainy day emergency fund, erasing a sturdy surplus and breaking numerous promises on accountability, ethics and public safety, Stephen Harper and his CONs didn't have the interest, time or ability to continue mapping out a disaster plan.
I guess the piano lessons and hockey book got in the way.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A GOOD FEVER...

Enough about swine and their churlish across-aisle taunts and bullying. I doubt there's a fourth division rugby team that could compete with the party that's given us a bribe to a dying MP, making 'cancer' a sexy career opportunity, shipping bodybags to remote communities needing medicine, laughing off the fatal listeriosis as "a death by a thousand cold cuts" or hoping that the latest victim of said food poisoning was a rival.
What Canadians want? Crap if I know. But give them more of this, just to help us recover from the above...

Saturday, October 24, 2009

LEADERSHIP, SORT OF...


The Canadian public is anxious but not completely sold on the idea of that H1N1 flu shot, which is slowly winding its way to your nearest doctor.
It's true, the CON government has faced some heat over the delays and its handling of this issue -- but I suppose to Gerry Ritz and Pierre Poilievre, those body bags were just an instance of 'lightening up the mood or a lesson on hardwork. Lisa Raitt sees it as a possible great and sexy career boost to Leona Aglukkuq, if she can handle it...
That aside, I've noticed on the radio spots for Health Canada that unlike all things stimulus and Canada Action Plan, the government is going out of its way to avoid being known as the first line of defence. The ones I've heard make point of stating "all levels of government" have their fingers on the H1N1 file. Which is true. But is this a case of shielding their actual function and role, just in case something goes awry? Not that these guys haven't been afraid to share the credit -- especially on good news items. Kind of like it's also true that the CONs were the government which helped cut the ribbon and tried to take the credit for construction of the new Pitt River crossing, despite the fact that the money bill was signed off more than four years ago by a government headed by Paul Martin... It would also seem that they are being overly generous in not asking for their due credit on squeezing both B.C. and Ontario into the HST thingy.
Is it because they are scared about being held accountable for their actions, or that the criticism already expressed has them trying to ladle the heat to the provinces and municipalities?

Hat tip to ScottT.

Monday, October 19, 2009

I'LL TAKE GARY DOER TO BLOCK, BARACK...


Look who now's playing cover for the Alberta tarsands, er oilsands project.
While I actually believe that the best strategy to deal with the oilsands and its litany of environmental implications (many to come) isn't to force it closed or halted, I find it amusing in a sick way that another NdP leader is playing defence for Stephen Harper.
Gary Doer may have a track record in Manitoba, but what he offers in tarsands pollution denials is akin to holding up a big novelty sized cheque with the SS Valdez on it and offering it to environmentalists.
I wonder how comfortable the intelligent, serious NdPers are feeling, these days?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

THE TIDE GOES IN, THE TIDE GOES OUT...


It may not be like clockwork, but the CON celebratory mood may be in withdrawal this weekend, although one never can guess just how things work in this great world of ours.
Riding high in the polls despite having created the biggest deficit in Canadian history -- prissied up with a lot of giant novelty cheques with CON faces, colours and autographs -- Stephen Harper's gang has seemingly stubbed its toe again, if not shot it off, with a myriad of cluck-ups and cockamaney selfishness.
Their smokescreening to prove the former Canadian diplomat to Afghanistan is either lying or mis-remembering has caused a familiar bruise with the government's integrity and honesty levels.
Harper's claim that "he didn't see the memo" makes him a liar or an incompetent buffoon -- but its the same kind of defensive play he made about the woman locked up in the Sudan, too.
Now there are serious allegations that Canadians were offering bribes to buy time and peace with the Taliban kind of raises alarm bells. And memories. I guess when the so-called leader of your country can allegedly bribe a dying MP for his vote, what's a little bribe between warring enemies?
There's the whole cheque-gate thing, which pokes a stick in many eyes, partisan from all sides... It's the kind of behaviour that many Tory supporters associated with Trudeau and Chretien-era politics, and the stench of being bribed with our own money, while Harper's grinning idiots pretend like its payola-time, raises multiple ires -- no more proof is necessary by how quickly the government tried to squash the story (going from "it was just one rogue MP" to now sending out spokesliars to say its just a case of "the Liberals did it so we've made the same error").
Of course, the decade-old evidence of Liberal cheque-giving falls flat when you notice that none of those cheques feature anything but the Canadian government logo, no pictures of a smirking MP on the wall-size memento, no party logo and no mish-mash of signatures. Only the CONs were clever enough to run with those.
Now Harper has been discovered trying to ramp up his piano-playing through a link at the Economic recovery website, making a governmental info area into a partisan hootenanny. This after someone finally called him on his out-of-control narcissism, where his photos lined the pages of the site to an embarrassing level.
Then there's the whole 'turning himself into a pretzel when it comes to partisan appointments'. Remember Harper's whole "We're going to do it the right way" and his idea of being accountable?
What are the CONs doing to rectify these items, which alone are barely enough to stir the barely partisan from indifference, but when stacked one ontop of another and another, along with the old ones that Harper was granted a pass on, it's pretty damning.
Instead of counselling their leader with some kind of mental health plan, an intervention on his meglomania and self-professed passion of wasting energy on focusing on the opposition and trumping a few inconsequential photo-shop images, even a pamplet on a good 12-step program? Their scurrying from their holes, howling "This is not fair!" and creating a whole lotta more interest -- even the media, who has done its best to lighten poor Steve's load and ignore his trespasses, knows that where there is smoke, there's fire...
And down comes the sandcastle.

Monday, October 5, 2009

WANTED: OUR MOJO BACK...


Okay, the numbers are terrible.
The visuals and white noise that is considered 'journalism' these days are also icky. Although we could complain about the missing ethical compass of the media, who appear to be following down the same stairs that their US counterparts took when George W Bush's team were sliming John Kerry's war hero status, it won't help move this boat in the right direction.
While I wholeheartedly believe that the current positive spin that Stephen Harper and his CONs are enjoying is all lather, no soap, the real concern is that the response from Liberal-land and Michael Ignatieff in particular has been underwhelming, lacking in punch.
We don't need to be George Foreman (sorry, I'm dating myself) but we do need to put the 'heat' on the grill. We also have to lay the foundation for the inevitable election -- which, if the current polling numbers continue to be replicated, is going to be very very soon.
Look at what the CONs and Harper had going for them during their last days in opposition. While they would roll out a very easy-to-digest list of promises/policies in that 2005/06 winter election, they already had a piece to their program well known. They've had the bread-and-butter crime issue -- one that has proven to be a slightly more of a whack-a-mole for them than a real call to action (we still haven't seen those new RCMP members promised in 2006, while their anti-gun registry flies in the face of what the police chiefs of Canada have been calling for)...
While the argument in the Liberal war room is that the policy will be released in due time, likely with the dropping of the writ, its never too late to put out something worth standing for.
I'm thinking the 30-50 poverty plan that Stephane Dion spoke so forcefully about prior to and during the last election campaign. Poverty is an issue that is affecting more and more Canadians during this recession. People who are seeing their EI run out, being forced onto welfare rolls, those who are being turned away from welfare due to 'tough-in-good-times' provincial regulations. Those same people are now being squeezed out of the stats that track unemployment, being classified as 'non-existent' when it comes to seeking a job.
Canada as a nation has built up a reputation for responding to the needs of those less able to pick themselves up, whether its due to a temporary setback or more long-term issues. I want the Liberal Party to be at the forefront of speaking up for those who are falling through the cracks, for those who are seeing opportunity as someone else's reality. And while we also have to admit that there is a cost for such a program, if we talk about it as a vital investment that in many ways is 'wealth creation', turning citizens from dependents on government handouts to taxpaying, healthy contributors to the Canadian economy, I think it is an issue where the party can establish a beachhead prior to the writ being called.
The public and the media is clambering for a reason to like us. We need to step forward and give them that -- let the Grouchy and Less than Good with Numbers Party do their pickin' and grinnin' act.

Friday, October 2, 2009

QUICK OFF THE MARK...


You have to give Jack Layton credit. Despite having little money and a position almost impossible to defend, he likely knocked out a double with his quick-to-air orange spots currently making the rounds on TV these days.
He hits his spots and lays out exactly why he has tumbled himself into a parliamentary pretzel (without quite saying it that way). Now, I fully understand exactly why he's doing it, and most Liberals should be thanking the spiritual one for the NdP for doing just that -- less said about the latest polls the better.
But is it such a novel idea, getting out quickly to head off the dissection of criticism, whether warranted or not?
Let's just say Jack's learned from our total lack of same ... I still have yet to see one of the Ignatieff wildlife spots except on Liblogs, we know the Dion team decided to forgo countering Harper's lies and fictional attacks with a deaf ear. Considering we have some money and Jack's practically working the squeegy corner for quarters, it's amazing that the big minds who surround Ignatieff haven't figured it out yet. They do have TV in Toronto, don't they?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

BIZARRO WORLD...


... when the media gives Denis Coderre the hint of respectibility and sensibility typically applied to knights of the roundtable, captains from the Original Six hockey clubs, and Sir Thomas More.
So typical that they are enjoying the pile-on of Michael Ignatieff while letting a numbers-deficient, ethically challenged and accountability allergic CON and their so-called leader skate away with the worst fiscal management record since George W. erased a healthy surplus with 'me-me-me' economics.
Could Ignatieff have handled his Outremont decision more astutely and more quickly? Sure. But when the end result grants powers to the grassroots that previously were in jeopardy, when the end result guarantees two ridings will have the choice of two excellent candidates, there is expectations of a zero-sum result. But not in today's Bizarro-world, where heavily leveraged media conglomerates hooked on government money speak with an eery similar voice.
But, take heart fellow Liberals. The last time a party leader was being scolded and pillored for some self-inflicted reason, he lived to walk and run again, right?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

TURN THE CORNER...


I don't care about polls -- isn't that always the way when the numbers aren't great? -- but there is no denying that Harper and his CONs are feeling some wind in their sails by the latest numbers.
When you've got an unlimited access to advertising dollars (and a public that seems apathetic to how its tax dollars are being finagled), multiple opportunities each week to roll out the late Ed McMahon's novelty-sized chequebook around the country looking like a Santa saviour, plus the attitude that the ends always justify the means, there's perfect reason for Harper to be pushing close to majority territory.
Of course, Parliament hasn't really sat since the late spring and historically Harper and his hitmen have proven to be hamfisted when it comes to working under the press gallery's hot lights.
None of their mistakes have proven fatal; the media has been all-too-easily distracted to not push on the In-and-Out (unless there's great visuals like RCMP and scurrying scaliwags emerging from the CON headquarters), the Cadman tapes and now the blatant favouritism of government money to CON cabinet ministers' ridings.
All that said, there is plenty I find wrong with how the Liberal party is handling its opportunities and job.
Ignatieff has tried, with some minor success, to change the tone and not play the same full-contact, no-rules-barred game of gutter politics that the CONs take so much pleasure in. His ads, while looking solid, fell short of creating an impact. In fact, I never saw one on TV, only on YouTube. At the same instance, the CONs ramped up their anti-Ignatieff and balderdash coalition concoction.
While Harper has more mud on himself and tarnished his 'leadership' image by constantly playing it partisan at all costs, it hasn't proven damaging enough to turn public opinion wholeheartedly against him.
Ignatieff, on the other hand, hasn't benefited (yet) from his strategic placement on the high road -- and he may never if he doesn't find his game.
Perhaps the Liberals need to rekindle that energy and intensity that helped them crawl out of the hole in the 1980s, when the Rat Pack hit the Mulroney government often and hard. It wasn't always pretty, nor always effective, but it created a lasting image. There is negative backlash one risks, but apparently the public is willing to forgive what they see as mutual mudthrowing. While I don't think Ignatieff needs to be throwing tough and loud accusations at Harper at all times, but certainly it could be good use of some of his soldiers.
I'm not suggesting we stoop to his level in all areas -- you don't go chasing the same possum when the other dog's off barking. But there are plenty of areas and plenty of past quotes that Harper can't completely wash away with a distracting photo op.
John Kerry's campaign attempted to 'ride above' the lies and dastardly storylines that the Bush/Cheney team threw at him, and even now history from the media's point of view is that he was a failure candidate. Nevermind that he would have been 10x the president than Bush, nevermind that he was 20x the person that anyone in the Republican party had on its frontlines, Kerry's presidential run is filed under 'flop.'
We have to face facts -- the CONs have an army of people who hate Liberals to the point where they'll cut brake lines and inciting rebellion against parliamentary procedure. They spread lies and attempt to demolish all the great things that Liberals have done to make Canada fairer, more compassionate and prosperous nation. When you are fighting the likes of those, you can't be playing by Marquess of Queensberry rules. When they are aiming below the belt, you need to be ready to use the same tactic when the opportunity unfolds. But it has to be now -- pulling it out in the late stages of an election campaign harkens to a desperate, hail paul martin moment.
I think its time to take off the gloves and give back what's been given. It won't completely eliminate 'the high road' if its framed as showing Harper for who he really is. It's time people are reminded exactly what he stands for -- making Canada into a completely different nation that has no room for compassion, no heart for action.
JUST TO ADD: I definitely believe this is a major step in the right direction -- feeding stats and photo ops with well-versed statements which shine on the Harper hypocrisy and secret agenda needs to continue. Kudos to Gerard Kennedy for turning up the heat.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT'S DUE...


In his own words, Stephen Harper praised the actions and decisions of Liberal prime ministers Jean Chretien and Paul Martin in keeping Canada out of the deregulatory mess and overall greed of the foreign banking sector, despite having whined and complained over their wise and grounded stewardship...
"None of the roots of the recession (which can be traced back to the early 90s race to loosen banking oversight and ease access to credit) are to be found in Canada."

"Canada's management of its economy and financial system proved that "Canada got it right."


Bravo, Mr. Chretien and Mr. Martin. Bravo!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

TAPEHEAD...


Pretend that Stephen Harper is the opposite of what you know:
He's wickedly sharp, a shrewd, clever man who turns a weakness into a strength and a strength into a weakness. This week's 'leak' of a speech to the faithful in the Soo was a clever planting of a disruptive seed. Harper knows that once a plot is put out into the public, it can sometimes go sideways.
This time, he has two results that would fit his purposes.
A) the opening salvo of wanting a majority, the stating of the obvious, is meant to hit the voting populace like a placebo, creating a few moments of gasps and shock but like his first-day declaration on the 2006 campaign, that he'd bring same-sex marriage back to parliament for a vote if elected, it was orchestrated pre-writ to dull the fears of many fence sitters.
And B), it also shifted the focus onto his manchurian candidate, the bogus coalition argument. Never mind the fact that he had a coalition plan of his own against the Martin government, with the same boogiemen. By putting forward the trojan horse scenario, it mobilizes his own team and also a portion of the ill-informed and ignorant. It also creates a divisive anger -- if you remember last election, there were incidents of more than sign stomping; some criminal-minded (supporters of one particular party, no doubt) folks were out cutting brake lines and vandalizing houses. Democracy is no longer a game of fair play, now its warfare under this Stalin wannabe. When Harper uses inflamed language, calling any government that isn't led by his 'a coalition of socialists and separatists', its meant to raise more than just the temperature of debate... So much for Canada's reputation as a sane, gentle democracy.

On the other hand, if Harper is actually the overstuffed, overrated narcissist as he appears, this 'leak', whether authentic or planted, will turn out like his 'anti-arts' spiel or 'I'm looking for a majority' rant of 2004. It will mobilize people who are tired of mean-spirited, dishonest and uncaring leadership, who will be looking for an honest broker, a positive reason to vote and force the CON team to rethink its focus on salting the Canadian political landscape.
Although the CONs' currently are in the drivers' seat in most polls, so was Paul Martin in 2004 and 2006. In the last two election campaigns, key turning points Harper benefited from came via a co-conspirator -- the RCMP's bogus 'investigation' of an income trust leak, and the 2008 Steve Murphy-Mike Duffy tag team, off-the-record mugging of Stephane Dion.
I believe in a Canada that sets standards that the world can reach, not stoop to. I believe in a Canada that takes care of the less fortunate, not one that spends a fortune to create less.
Stephen Harper's career on tape will end up costing him his job. It can't come soon enough.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

MAN OF INACTION...


Does anyone see a trend/evil plan at work here?
So-called leader Stephen Harper, hater of all things Canadian, ignores the dwindling decks of immigration refugee boards. When caught out, he begins to trickle a few appointees to positions just for cosmetics' sake.
A while later, the CON government begin to point out the failings of the immigration/refugee system, suddenly requiring people from the Czech Republic and Mexico to apply for visitors' visas when coming to Canada. When visiting one of the countries, he pleads: "It's not you, it's me (but not me - someone else is responsible)."

Meanwhile, other CON sleeper agents start murmurring how the imperfect refugee system needs to be overhauled.

The Americans, meanwhile, are going thru a somewhat vicious political debate about some form of nationalized health care. The anti-Obama squad (republicans, aka friends of Harper) use nefarious comparisons and examples from the Canadian health care experience (not perfect, for sure) to spread fear and misinformation among Americans. Stephen Harper goes on a US television network and 'stands up' for Canada by saying he won't meddle in the health care debate, can't offer any comment on Canada's health care system, and that it's all the responsibility of the provinces, or as Chico use to tell the man: "it's not me, boss!"

In scenario one, just as when he wanted to deregulate/remove the government from the nuclear industry, Harper produced a semi-crisis that framed his laisse faire argument well.
In example two, Harper again uses the tactic of implied ambivalence to show that he neither supports Canada's system or its goals.

And if you're not from a group that traditionally supports his team, like someone visibly not Harper-esque? Let's just say the service is less than stellar.

Intentional ambivalence from 24 Sussex Drive. The means Harper uses to speak Down For Canada.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

HARPER'S OWN FAUST...


The stimulus spending spree (for nudge-nudge-wink-wink appropriate projects) continues from the Stephen Harper Chorus:

The fate of this year’s Divers/Cité festival in Montreal was up in the air on Wednesday after the federal government said it would not approve funding for the event.

Divers/Cité, Montreal’s gay pride arts festival, was counting on $155,000 in new funding from Ottawa.

In an email from Industry Canada, spokeswoman Christiane Fox said there are just too many worthwhile events to allow government funding for all of them.

The directors of Divers/Cité in Montreal said bureaucrats told them their funding request met all the criteria, and that final approval was with Industry Minister Tony Clement’s office. But on Monday, organizers were told the Conservative government had rejected their request.



The long arm of Rev. Charles McVety and Real Women of Canada apparently knows how to pull the so-called leader's chains.
In RWOC prez Cecilia Forsyth's letter to Harper, she makes sure he knows who's boss.
But I'm a little mystified when she knocks the gay pride circuit for narcissism -- she hasn't noticed Harper's penchant for psychic dresser advice and multiple 'pride' shots of the tubby one?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

THE MASTER...



Harper would know what he speaks of.
Because when it comes to using 'the wedge' and playing divisive games, he's the king.

H/T to Steve V.

Friday, June 26, 2009

SELLING LEMONADE...


Governing?
Not his forte.
But this and this are.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

PAGING KARNAC...


It's crystal ball time, or as us Vancouver Canucks fans say, the time of year where optimism meets its match.
For many years now, I've looked at the NHL draft as the start of the hockey season - or at least when the true chase for Lord Stanley's silver bowl gets underway.
Back in 1990 and the draft ventured west to BC Place, I took up a seat far afield from the big stage and watched in anticipation when Vancouver looked to end its endless search for a tall, talented centre. Petr Nedved was the consensus choice with the second pick overall, although at the time I was equally enamored with Mike Ricci. The Canucks had two first round choices that year and I followed it eagerly with a dog-eared copy of the Hockey News draft preview. As their pick approached I was certain who they should pick.
As much as I studied it, my expertise was purely paper-deep. Still, that burning, boiling pit of my stomach kept telling me that I was right. So when it came time to make the 18th pick of that first round, I shouted as loud as I could - "Take Tkachuk!" My friend beside me laughed.
The Canucks might as well have, too, just after they called out Shawn Antoski's name. Tkachuk was picked 19th overall by the Winnipeg Jets, and the rest they say, is history. The strapping Medford, Mass. native is still looking for his taste of Lord Stanley's filthy cup; the Canucks continue their search, like Homer, for something half illusion, half haunted. I don't live and die by the score anymore, but I do follow them still.
So tonight, when the draft comes up and the Canucks honchos approach the podium, I'll half-yell, with a wince, 'Take Tkachuk!'
In the meantime, here's my predictions for the Draft's first round...
1 - John Tavares, NYI
2 - Victor Hedman, TB
3 - Matt Duchene, COL
4 - Brayden Schenn, TOR * (acquiring the pick in a draft-day trade with Atlanta)
5 - Evander Kane, LA
6 - Oliver Ekman-Larsson, PHO
7 - Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, ATL * (acquired from Toronto)
8 - Jared Cowen, DAL
9 - Nazem Kadri, OTT
10- Zach Kassian, EDM
11- Jordan Schroeder, NAS
12- Chris Kreider, MIN
13- David Rundblad, BUF
14- John Moore, FLO
15- Scott Glennie, ANA
16- Ryan Ellis, CLB
17- Jeremy Morin, STL
18- Jacob Josefson, MTL
19- Drew Shore, NYR
20- Carter Ashton, CAL
21- Zach Budish, PHI
22- Dmitri Kulikov, VAN
23- Simon Despres, NJ
24- Nick Leddy, WAS
25- Tim Erixon, BOS
26- Landon Ferraro, NYI
27- Stefan Elliott, CAR
28- Jordan Caron, CHI
29- Ethan Werek, DET
30- Calvin De Haan, PIT

Thursday, June 11, 2009

ON WITH THE SHOW -THIS IS IT...

Or so the song goes.
Today promises to be a splendific day - because our so-called Prime Minister is going to unleash and unplug vaudeville back from its death corpse.
There'll be props a plenty, one bloated michelin man, and the comedic stylings of Jimmy "want to see me pull a deficit out of my hat?" Flaherty, all in hopes of forestalling the official workings of democracy.
The cheering section will include the Asper-ators, all pleading for us to think of the children ("You can't cancel the show - we've only got five more box tops to go before we get all our Harper-centric spandex jumbo checks!") while Harper, Flaherty and Dumbo do their version of 'ShamWow! the Dirge'...
In a rare exclusive, the audition tape of Duffus and Harper working out their straight-man lines was discovered in the bathroom of Wences' Palace of Flapjacks. In it, the two stooges reveal the secret to cooking the books, how attack ads help melt off the pounds, and why apologies are only necessary when mobs are ready to drum you out of your opulent slumber... Now watch and be amazed --

Monday, June 8, 2009

HANDS IN OUR POCKETS...


The negative ads aren't working.
That's what pollster Nik Nanos says after a thorough poll taken over the past few weeks.
The conclusion is that the ads have had no discernable short term impact in favour of the Conservatives. The long term negative impact on Ignatieff remains uncertain and merits further tracking over time.

It's true that this may be just part-one of a multi-attack series; negative ads do have an effect but will it weigh more heavily on the Liberal leader or the so-called leader of the secretive, out-of-touch, uncaring CON party?
But my question is: why isn't the Mainstream Media asking why Canadians are footing the bill for this out-of-season ad blitz?
Is it because the so-called leader named Harper had his surly, bully twin call them and warn them, fool with my subsidy and I'll fool with yours?
When taxpayers subsidize every donation to a political party, from as high as 75% (0-$400 donations), why is no journalist asking the politicians about this 'aggressive ad buy' when 363,000 Canadians have lost their jobs since the start of this recession? From my rough calculations, the taxpayer has unknowingly committed $4 Million of their dollars from the public coffers to this out-of-season hunting spree.
It's time to ask the journalists why?

NAME THAT TUNE...


The little leprechan is back singing showtunes.
Canada's (poor)finance minister Jim Flaherty announced today that global economic slowdown is looking like a passing phase -- 'It's over, people!' But beware, it's more colourful, sugary platitudes that will cause tooth pain and stomach cramps in reality.
He even said Canada's $115 billion economic action plan was "in place and fully operational" for Canadians but that it is "use it or lose it" money.
Apparently, the mayors of Canada's municipalities aren't getting the same memo.
Expected to shoulder a huge burden of the government's three-headed infrastructure regulation, the mayors of Canada are worried that both the fiscal pressure and slow-to-come federal financing is not getting out as advertised.
"There are too many communities competing for too few dollars, so we're in this perpetual deficit position in terms of the infrastructure gap," (Whistler BC mayor Ken) Melamed said.
Add the fact that the starting gun of the summer construction season has come and gone and only a few "choice" ridings, er municipalities with CON MPs have seen a dollop of infrastructure gold.
No doubt the mayors understand that the twinkling-eyed CON finance mismanager has a habit of hyperbole -- just ask any of the mayors who were active in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Even Flaherty's dramatic Dr. Evil imitation last week, where he paused to look directly into the camera after the "$50-BILLION DOLLARS" rolled off his tongue, was part show. Was it because he was hoping to create a little "Paul Martin-esque magic", setting expectations to be not as rosey as he knows they'll be? In other words, come October when there's a real chance of the opposition parties getting tired of this dog-and-pony show again and putting forward a non-confidence vote, that he'll also have some "great news" to announce, like say, an adjusted deficit of $42 Billion?
Harper and Co. have twisted around on their original principles and contorted so much that many accuse them of copying the Chretien Liberal blueprint. I'd say this crooked CON crew is just in it for themselves, so keep your hands on your wallet and your eyes on the shadows at all times.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

IMPLOSION AT THE IMBECILE FACTORY...


I'm certain I've seen this movie before.
There's a midget-sized butthead wagging the dog, leading the chorus of partisan zealots trying to raise the ire of ignorant Canadians.
Death in the hospitals! Critical exams on hold! An isotope shortage that puts Canada's health care system in jeopardy!
On its first viewing, the overly dramatic hyperbole sent off alarm bells with me and a number of people I knew. But politicians being what they are, they all fell in line in the end, allowing min-minister Lunn and so-called leader Stephen 'running scared' Harper to turn the shutdown of Chalk River into a political charade - giving them an opportunity to soften public sentiment on the very public Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd crown corp.
Jump ahead say about 14 months. Chalk River is in the midst of a crisis - shut down due to leakage issues (and leakage and nuclear reactors are not things you want to hear in the same sentence)... It means a critical shortage of medical isotopes, but surprisingly, the new edition of Harper's revolving doorstops is all mellow with it. Within weeks, the government reveals a plan that will 'help' Canada take advantage of this wonderful science while also loosening the public grip on the local industry. In other words, putting the AECL's nuclear reactor business on the auction block, while inviting private tenders to manage Chalk River.
Hmmm, now this also gives me a flashback to another incredible story. There once was this minister, a rising star who dared to develop a personality (or faux personality) of his own. He'd show up with a beautiful dame on one arm, fancy suits, and a box of Joes Louis for all the boys. And he left his important department documents, many marked SECRET near the pillow of his girlfriend. And forgot about them. And didn't retrieve them for a long time.
Jump forward one year, almost to the day. Curious coincidence this, but apparently the current minister in charge of natural resources, including the above mentioned nuclear department, a Lisa Raitt, has appeared to left some of her documents marked SECRET on a desk at a TV station. And failed to retrieve them. Or return calls when it was revealed what had happened. The folder reveals alot about the government's investing into the industry and the aged Chalk River plant -- apparently it's quite a sinkhole, kind of like your typical CON cabinet job.
But wait, the flashbacks keep coming. If we skip back to the announced plan to sell-off Canada's nuclear industry, which would require some form of deregulation and external pressure to change the regulatory body (which Harper's team has already squeezed with its firing of Linda Keen), you suddenly find yourself at the desk of another tiny knucklehead, a Mr. Jimmy Flaherty. Seems he held a job long ago where he guaranteed a surplus budget. It was as sure as the day is long, he inferred. The tough times would not stop them, but it would require that the province of the day divest itself of certain public properties to help create a better business culture, offer better services, and ease up on the provincial coffers. That version of a financial minister proceeded, with the thumbs up from his leader, to make severe cutbacks to the water safety division. And within a year, seven people were dead in Walkerton.
A provincial commission found that the decisions of the Harris PC government was responsible for weakening of the inspection services, as well as reducing inforcement procedures.
Ahah! you say -- there's a storyline being floated around on just the same premise -- a recession gives a conservative government leash to start selling publicly-held industries and crown corporations. Some of them seemingly mundane. But it also finds a government lapdog that is eager to appease its bosses (who unlike in the movie 'democracy', are really the dudes in sharp suits and dark shades who write big, big cheques)... Asking say a potted fern of a minister to loosen environmental assessment regulations, just so that they can get those jobs out there tout sweet! That's your cue to cover your eyes.
There doesn't have to be a sequel to this disaster - if Canadians wake up and turf out this gang of incompetent nincompoops. The sooner the better.

THE JOKER'S ON YOU...


Apparently, my phone number is on the 'hit list.'
Remember how I related about a canvass poll my wife took the other day?
Well, today I got the other end of it -- a query as to whether I'd be interested in joining a focus group. Hmmmm, I wondered - who tends to rely upon that old-hat art of focus groups?
The friendly young woman's voice said she was calling on behalf of Valleyfield, a marketing research company that would be hosting a focus group in our area.
Was I a Canadian citizen, above the age of 18, and interested in participating in a focus group? The enticement was that for about 2 hours work I would receive $100 for my time. Naturally, times being what they are I accepted her offer.
Unfortunately, this was just a preliminary call - first I had to pass through a few more hoops. Did I vote in the last election? Do I consider myself a daily reader, someone who reads a couple times a week, someone who reads occasionally, or consider myself someone who doesn't read (what I read was left unasked)?
As per usual, the questions then came about whether I or anyone else in the household are members of the media (affirmative - but that didn't stop her), an employee of a crown or federal government agency, and what was my salary (which group)? She asked who I voted for in the last election, and wanted to know if I considered myself fairly aware on what was going on federally. She thanked me for my time and said my name would be added to the list of possible focus-groupers.
I doubt that I will get a second call - my wife berated me for admitting my position in the media, that this would have been a good opportunity to see the inside of one of these groups (as well, I'm not someone who is paid to cover political issues)... But alas, I am too honest for my own good.
That fact alone likely limits the CONs interest in me, as they are the only party with the kind of bankroll to delve into all this subterfuge. But don't worry, I'm certain one way or another, we taxpayers are coughing up for it either as some sleight of hand federal polling, or through the generously subsidized political donation.
I will keep you abreast if anything comes of it.

Monday, June 1, 2009

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED...


...if the CONs latest attack ad assault was trying to 'firm up' those negative numbers -- for Stephen Harper.
The lying so-called leader of the CONs scores some pretty blue numbers, according to Angus Reid's reading of a poll on the attack ads, current public attitudes and the leaders.
Sample some of these and smile: WORD ASSOCIATION W/ THE LEADERS
Arrogant - Harper 53% Ignatieff 42% Layton 32%
Open - Harper 11% Ignatieff 25% Layton 30%
Secretive - Harper 54% Ignatieff 25% Layton 12%
Efficient - Harper 20% Ignatieff 25% Layton 12%
Inefficient - Harper 32% Ignatieff 15% Layton 28%
Compassionate - Harper 10% Ignatieff 12% Layton 34%
Uncaring - Harper 37% Ignatieff 21% Layton 10%
Honest - Harper 17% Ignatieff 21% Layton 26%
Dishonest - Harper 34% Ignatieff 24% Layton 17%
Exciting - Harper 3% Ignatieff 12% Layton 13%
Foolish - Harper 17% Ignatieff 9% Layton 25%


Looks like Harper is closing the gap... with Richard Nixon! Keep it up, Tricky Steve.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

RIDDLE ME THIS...


Who is behind the tele-polling this weekend which is asking a lot of questions about Michael Ignatieff?
My spouse got polled Sunday from an unfamiliar agency. Among the questions asked were: Michael Ignatieff will return to teach at Harvard if he doesn't win the next election - how do you feel about that?
The man also asked: The current advertising about Michael Ignatieff 'Just Visiting' talks about his recent return to Canada - How has it affected your opinion of him?
Michael Ignatieff was a supporter of the coalition - are you more, less or undecided on if you support the coalition?
Michael Ignatieff has said he would raise the GST if elected - are you more, less or undecided likely to vote Liberal knowing this?
Michael Ignatieff proposed the Green Shift first - does that affect your opinion of him positively, negatively or undecided?
Which party is the one you feel can deliver on the following issues: getting tough on crime; dealing with the economy; and protecting Canada's place in the world?
Which statement is closer to your opinion: To get Canada on track we need a Conservative majority; or, to get Canada on track we need a coalition government?
.....

There were more questions, she said it took about 10 minutes and the man asking the questions would not say who had commissioned the poll. It's fairly obvious to me who commissioned it, and for what purpose.
The CONs are spending a lot of money to see what kind of effect their current ad campaign is having on the public, while also fishing around for the next missive (coalition? taxes? economy?)... That the questionaire was knee-deep in lies and twisted truths is enough evidence to be convinced who is behind it.
I'm just hoping that we tax payers aren't paying for it. Oh, who am I kidding - we know that they are using public funding for this kind of BS; whther its via tax-payer subsidized political donations or fisking the federal treasury for its polling/focus grouping expenditures, Canadians are coughing up.
Too bad the MsM is only worried about its piece of the action to not dig up the dirt on Harper and his disgusting alliance.