Christian Conservative Christian "Independent"

I'm an evangelical Christian, member of the CPC, but presently & unjustly exiled to wander the political wilderness.
All opinions expressed here are solely my own.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Likely the first of many

The first of what will likely be many "I TOLD YOU SO" posts... from the CBC... "Official refused to marry gay couple, rights tribunal hears".

When I worked at a local Hospital, I once got a call from the "Gyne-Specialty Clinic". Two guesses as to what that was a code-word for. Anyway, it was just an information call, I didn't actually have to do anything to assist them. That day, I said to my co-worker, "If I EVER get a call from that department again, I'm putting them on hold, and I'm transferring the call to you." Why? Because I REFUSED to actively assist a department that I knew to be performing abortions. Was it in my job description to help them? Yep, it sure was. But if push came to shove, I wasn't going to budge... I would NOT lend any assistance in the murder of human beings. Thankfully, the situation never arose again.

The Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission is presently reviewing a review of a decision (yes, three steps there, a review of a review of a decision) that says that a man of faith has no right to refuse to marry a same-sex couple if it violates his religious beliefs.

Yes, he is an employee of the Crown, employed to perform civil marriages. But here's the problem... when he was hired, he was hired knowing what his job description was. There was no problem back then in regards to his religious beliefs. Now, they've gone and changed the law, and with it, his job description, which now requires him to violate his religious convictions, should the need arise... and they won't make any accommodation for him. (By the way, can an employer legally do that? Just asking)

For the record, he didn't seek to prevent their marriage... he simply indicated that he would be unable to perform the ceremony, and referred them to someone else. That was the right thing to do... allowed him to not violate his conscience, and allowed them to legally marry. That should have been the end of it.

But of course, activism just doesn't know when to quit.

h/t to thePolitic (who also says "I told you so"... like so many of us...)

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Dion - "White & Nerdy" Video 2

Okay, I have to post this again... Dion in Weird Al's "White & Nerdy". Just click the link, let's boost it to one of the "Most Viewed" videos. Only 930 views so far... lets try break at least 10,000!!!

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Hugo Chavez - Dictator at last

It is done.
Venezuela's Chavez granted sweeping new powers
Updated Wed. Jan. 31 2007 12:43 PM ET
Associated Press

CARACAS, Venezuela -- A congress loyal to President Hugo Chavez approved a law Wednesday granting him authority to enact sweeping measures by decree.

Meeting at a downtown plaza in a session that resembled a political rally, legislators unanimously approved all four articles of the law by a show of hands.

"Viva President Hugo Chavez, long live socialism!'' National Assembly President Cilia Flores said as she proclaimed the law approved. "Fatherland, socialism or death. We will prevail!''

Chavez, who is beginning a new six-year term after winning recent elections, said the legislation will be the start of a new era of "maximum revolution" during which he will consolidate Venezuela's transformation into a socialist society.

His critics call it a radical lurch toward authoritarianism by a leader with unchecked power.
And Democrats and Liberals will be swooning, thinking to themselves, "If only we could get that kind of power... just 'Imagine'..."

Interesting... I checked both CNN and Fox News to see what was being reported about it... look at what I found...

CNN? "No Comment" (finally found it buried deep down on a sub-page)

Fox News? "It's Official: Chavez a dictator" (2nd headline story)
(for the record... I DON'T READ FOX NEWS! I just took a look today for a comparison on how the LEFT and the RIGHT are portraying this)

Now, for some Canadian views on this issue...
Nope, nothing in CBC's lead stories... it was buried in their "World" sub-section, not shown on their main page)

CTV is also eerily silent... (also buried in their "World" sub-section, not on the main page at all)
Oh, there it is... as it is a farily major world event, it's on the front page... a leading story.

So, there's my rant for today on media bias... guess the leftist media sources in both nations don't think it's something we ought to be concerned about. Maybe they even think it's good news... heaven forbid.

Well, as a bit of a WWII historical guy, I am obliged to point out that it sure sounds a lot like it did in 1933...
"Two weeks after the Reichstag fire, Hitler requested the Reichstag to temporarily delegate its powers to him so that he could adequately deal with the crisis. Denouncing opponents to his request, Hitler shouted, “Germany will be free, but not through you!” When the vote was taken, the result was 441 for and 84 against, giving Hitler the two-thirds majority he needed to suspend the German constitution. On March 23, 1933, what has gone down in German history as the “Enabling Act” made Hitler dictator of Germany, freed of all legislative and constitutional constraints."
"Those who forget the lessons of history are doomed to repeat it."

For the record, I'm not comparing Chavez to Hitler... I'm just pointing out that the methods being used to implement his agenda are very Hitleresque.

I think we can all agree that if you need sweeping dictatorial powers to implement your agenda, then maybe, just maybe, people should be at least a little worried? Especially since they are the worlds largest non-Arab exporter of oil.

Well, I guess there is a bit of a plus for Kyoto fans... you might just get your wish of $2 per litre for gas!

Congrats! Please excuse the rest of us average Canadians when we get a little ticked over the prospect... and then move to expand the projects in the Alberta oilsands... ;-)

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Liberals don't understand CWB question

This just in from the Liberal Party of Canada... and I'm left scratching my head.

Wayne Easter is quoted as saying "The CWB Barley plebiscite question is 'manipulative'". Huh? The options look pretty clear and straightforward to me...
1) The Canadian Wheat Board should retain the single desk for the marketing of barley into domestic human consumption and export markets;

2) I would like the option to market my barley to the Canadian Wheat Board or any other domestic or foreign buyer;

3) The Canadian Wheat Board should not have a role in the marketing of barley.
Of course, if you are a "CWB ONLY" supporter, then I guess you would want to raise any kind of flag that you could in order to try and discredit the vote.

It's a false delemna to propose that there are only two possible options. As many Manitoba famers seem to support the Board, they can sell their grain to the Board, while other farmers have the option to look elsewhere, should they so choose. (having the option being the key) It would give the Manitoba farmers the ability to pool their resourses to get a fair price for high volumes on the open market, while Alberta farmers, if they so choose, can swing a deal with others on the world stage. It also opens the door to more specialty products, should farmers find a market for it.

It seems to me that Liberals, and most on the left in general, are really opposed to choice, not just in this, but in many areas. It's a "my way or the highway" approach to life, that many Conservatives, and a rising number of Canadians in general, are getting (if not already) sick and tired of.

It's like Childcare... institutionalized socialist daycare is NOT the only viable option for a large percentage of people... stop trying to prevent me from getting financial assistance for rasing my own kids at home. (oh, silly me, that won't allow the "childcare advocacy groups" from getting massive government grants... okay, scratch that idea)

Healthcare... there are means of providing some services, still paid for by the Province, outside of the traditional Hospital environment. And much cheaper options at that. (oops, right... I forgot, it's really about protecting unionized jobs and high paid Liberal-connected executive positions... sorry, my bad)

And now, the Wheat Board. They won't allow farmers to have a say in it... but it's not just the Wheat Board where choice is denied. Here in Ontario, there's a fight going on about milk production... some famers want the option of selling raw milk in a monitored and regulated fashion. But most (not all) Liberals in Queens Park don't want to even have the discussion... so discrimination continues.

I thought the "Party of Trudeau" was about maximizing the freedom of the individual, and preventing government oppression? Well, that's what he said he believed, according to his "Memiors"... which I own, for the record.

Humm... seems to me he, and most modern day Liberals, are pretty selective as to which freedoms that philosophy gets to be applied to.

"Liberalism"... an untenable political philiosophy which needs to be rooted out of our nation as soon as possible.

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Blogger Upgrade Complete

Well, looks like we made it. Blogger said that the whole process should "take just a few minutes". Well, four or five minutes into it, waiting for the "Welcome to the New Blogger!" page to appear, I get a page stating, "The process is taking a little longer than expected. If you have a large blog with a lot of comments, it may take some time. We'll send you an e-mail once the process is complete".

So I got that e-mail... FOUR HOURS LATER. ;-)

("should only take a few minutes"? LOL)

UPDATE: WOW! Talk about weird... this post, announcing my move to the new Blogger? Post number 800. Guess that's kinda like starting with a new slate, eh?

A stinging rebuke from Rick Mercer

A lady by the name of Noreen Golfman had an article published in the St. John's Independant on January 12, questioning the mission in Afghanistan, stating how her Christmas holidays were "ruined" by hearing reports of some "poor sod", a Canadian soldier, who had his legs blown off.

Well, the "poor sod" in question is Cpl. Paul Franklin... and he's a personal friend of Rick Mercer.

So Rick responded... and absolutely tore her to shreds.

(reposted in full for reading convience only... I will remove if there are any concerns)
Fighting Words
By Courtesy (St. John's)
The Independent
Friday, January 26, 2007

By Rick Mercer

For The Independent

Poor Noreen Golfman. She wrote in her Jan. 12 column (Blowing in the Wind … ) that her holidays were ruined by what she felt were incessant reports about Canadian men and women serving in Afghanistan. So upset was Noreen that, armed with her legendary pen, sharpened from years in the trenches at Memorial University’s women’s studies department, she went on the attack. I know I should just ignore the good professor and write her off as another bitter baby boom academic pining for what she fondly calls “the protest songs of yesteryear,” but I can’t help myself. A response is exactly what she wants; and so I include it here. After all, Newfoundlanders have seen this before: Noreen Golfman, sadly, is Margaret Wente without the wit.

Dear Noreen,

I am so sorry to hear about the interruption to your holiday cheer. You say in your column that it all started when the CBC ran a story on some “poor sod” who got his legs blown off in Afghanistan.

The “poor sod” in question, Noreen, has a name and it is Cpl. Paul Franklin. He is a medic in the Forces and has been a buddy of mine for years. I had dinner with him last week in Edmonton, in fact. I will be sure to pass on to him that his lack of legs caused you some personal discomfort this Christmas.

Paul is a pretty amazing guy. You would like him I think. When I met him years ago he had two good legs and a brutally funny sense of humour. He was so funny that I was pretty sure he was a Newfoundlander. You probably know the type (or maybe you don’t) — salt of the earth, always smiling, and like so many health-care professionals, seemingly obsessed with helping others in need.

These days he spends his time training other health-care workers and learning how to walk again. That’s a pretty exhausting task for Paul … heading into rehabilitation he knew very well his chances of walking again were next to none, considering he’s a double amputee, missing both legs above the knee.

At the risk of ruining your day Noreen, I’m proud to report that for the last few months he has managed to walk his son to school almost every morning and it’s almost a kilometre from his house. Next month Paul hopes to travel to Washington where he claims he will learn how to run on something he calls “bionic flipper cheetah feet.” The legs may be gone but the sense of humour is still very much intact.

Forgive me Noreen for using Paul’s name so much, but seeing as you didn’t catch it when CBC ran the profile on his recovery I thought it might be nice if you perhaps bothered to remember it from here on in. This way, when you are pontificating about him at a dinner party, you no longer have to refer to him simply as the “poor sod,” but you can actually refer to him as Paul Franklin. You may prefer “poor sod” of course; it’s all a matter of how you look at things. You see a “poor sod” that ruined your Christmas and I see a truly inspiring guy. That’s why I am thrilled that the CBC saw fit to run a story on Paul and his wife Audra. I would go so far as to suggest that many people would find their story, their marriage and their charitable endeavours inspiring. Just as I am sure that many readers of The Independent are inspired by your suggestion that Paul’s story has no place on the public broadcaster.

Further on in your column you ask why more people aren’t questioning Canada’s role in Afghanistan. I understand this frustration. It’s a good question. Why should Canada honour its United Nations-sanctioned NATO commitments? Let’s have the discussion. I would welcome debate on the idea that Canada should simply ignore its international obligations and pull out of Afghanistan. By all means ask the questions Noreen, but surely such debates can occur without begrudging the families of injured soldiers too much airtime at Christmas?

Personally, I would have thought that as a professor of women’s studies you would be somewhat supportive of the notion of a NATO presence in Afghanistan. After all, it is the NATO force that is keeping the Taliban from power. In case you missed it Noreen, the Taliban was a regime that systematically de-peopled women to the point where they had no human rights whatsoever. This was a country where until very recently it was illegal for a child to fly a kite or for a little girl to receive any education.

To put it in terms you might understand Noreen, rest assured the Taliban would frown on your attending this year’s opening night gala of the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival. In fact, as a woman, a professor, a writer and (one supposes) an advocate of the concept that women are people, they would probably want to kill you three or four times over. Thankfully that notion is moot in our cozy part of the world but were it ever come to pass I would suggest that you would be grateful if a “poor sod” like Paul Franklin happened along to risk his life to protect yours.

And then of course you seem to be somehow personally indignant that I would visit troops in Afghanistan over Christmas. You ask the question “When did the worm turn?” Well I hate to break it to you, but in my case this worm has been doing this for a long time now. It’s been a decade since I visited Canadian peacekeeping operations in Bosnia and this Christmas marked my third trip to Afghanistan. Why do I do it? Well I am not a soldier — that much is perfectly clear. I don’t have the discipline or the skills. But I am an entertainer and entertainers entertain. And occasionally, like most Canadians, I get to volunteer my professional time to causes that I find personally satisfying.

As a Newfoundlander this is very personal to me. On every one of these trips I meet Newfoundlanders who serve proudly in the Canadian Forces. Every day they do the hard work that we as a nation ask of them. They do this without complaint and they do it knowing that at every turn there are people like you, Noreen, suggesting that what they do is somehow undignified or misguided.

I am also curious Noreen why you refer to the head of the Canadian Forces, General Rick Hillier, as “Rick ‘MUN graduate’ Hillier.” I would suggest that if you wish to criticize General Hillier’s record of leadership or service to his country you should feel free. He is a big boy. However, when you dismiss him as “Rick ‘MUN Graduate’ Hillier” the message is loud and clear. Are you suggesting that because General Hillier received an education at Memorial he is somehow unqualified for high command? We are used to seeing this type of tactic in certain national papers — not The Independent.

You end by saying you personally cannot envision that peace can ever be paved with military offensives. May I suggest to you that in many instances in history peace has been achieved exactly that way.

The gates of Auschwitz were not opened with peace talks. Holland was not liberated by peacekeepers and fascism was not defeated with a deft pen. Time and time again men and women in uniform have laid down their lives in just causes and in an effort to free others from oppression.

It is unfortunate, Noreen, that in such instances people like yourself may have your sensitivities offended, especially during the holiday season, but perhaps that is a small price to pay. Best wishes for the remainder of 2007; may it be a year of peace and prosperity.

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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Attempting to move to the New Blogger

Might be back in a day or two, based on the horror stories I've heard from others.

Wish me luck!

(this post has been made assuming that maybe someone reading it might actually care...)

CBC's Drive by Smear - UPDATE

Well, looks like I was right... take a look at this little gem from the CBC's website... "Tories deny plan to extend mission in Afghanistan".

The CBC's drive by smear is COMPLETE. They CREATED this story the other night, on their "Sunday Night" program, by obtaining the MILITARY (not Tory) document. They report it on their program, so of course the CPC is going to respond. Then the folks at the CBC tout a "hard-hitting" story that the CPC is seeking to deny a secret plan they cooked up to extend the mission.

IT WAS A DRIVE BY SMEAR, paid for by Canadian taxpayers. Nothing more. They were not reporting the news... THEY WERE INVENTING IT.

They just strengthened my case for the Ombudsman...
I like this guy. Chris Landsea resigned from the IPPC two years ago because, in his opinion, their work had turned FROM being scientific in nature to political.
Dear colleagues,

After some prolonged deliberation, I have decided to withdraw from participating in the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). I am withdrawing because I have come to view the part of the IPCC to which my expertise is relevant as having become politicized. In addition, when I have raised my concerns to the IPCC leadership, their response was simply to dismiss my concerns.

(...) I personally cannot in good faith continue to contribute to a process that I view as both being motivated by pre-conceived agendas and being scientifically unsound. As the IPCC leadership has seen no wrong in Dr. Trenberth's actions and have retained him as a Lead Author for the AR4, I have decided to no longer participate in the IPCC AR4.

Sincerely, Chris Landsea
(former member of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change)
His credentials, by way of his published works.

Is the "science" conclusive? Hardly. Is it politicised? You betcha.

h/t to Splatto

Oh Man... "White and Nerdy"

Oh man, oh man... I could almost bust a gut at this.

I thought the Weird Al song "White and Nerdy" was hilarious enough on its own... but swapping in Dion? Priceless.

h/t to Brandon Langhjelm

Monday, January 29, 2007

CBC Censored Tory Campaign Ad?

This is news to me... did the CBC step in to block a Conservative campaign ad during the 2006 election?
"[W]hen the Liberals rolled out their attack ads, claiming Stephen Harper was going to put "soldiers in our streets". It was absurd, and it backfired.

The point is Telecaster, run by Jim Patterson, didn't censor them, even though they used images of Stephen Harper without his permission.

But when the Conservatives produced a response to those attack ads -- showing video clips of Liberal MPs admitting their own attack ads had gone too far -- Telecaster censored the ads. Telecaster ordered the Conservative ads off the air.

The story gets worse: Telecaster yanked the ads after a complaint from the CBC, because it was their footage that captured the MPs making those statements. The CBC actively intervened to knock Conservative ads off the air. And the Telecaster censor, who just happened to be a major Liberal donor, was happy to comply.

Isn't that a cosy little family?

Has the CBC ever complained about the Liberals using images of Conservative politicians taken from CBC cameras? Don't be ridiculous. The CBC is a wing of the Liberal Party -- the left wing.

When it's not busy trying to yank Conservative ads off the air, it's running Liberal propaganda using tax dollars -- long infomercials, thinly disguised as political talk shows or "documentaries.""
The CBC, stepping in to stop a Conservative response ad, right in the middle of an election??? EXCUSE ME?

I'll point you to my post from late last night about CBC bias... if you can't see it for yourself, then you must be a regular CBC viewer... and likely a Liberal, and NDP, or a Green.

CUT OFF THE FUNDS... enough is enough.

h/t to SDA

Harper - the Conservative Trudeau?

Take a look at some the descriptions used of Trudeau in this article...
"Now Trudeau felt deeply about certain political issues, but he never betrayed emotion unless it was on rare occasions, such as the murder of Pierre Laporte. Then you felt his anger. Normally, however, Trudeau approached controversy with a certain calm, as if he were slightly amused and above it all.

"Trudeau was a master of television," says Peter Donolo, former director of communications for Jean Chrétien. "He understood the intimate nature of the medium. His voice rarely rose in television. He was very quiet. He had this kind of charm – there was something inscrutable about it."

McLuhan early perceived that certain types of personalities were more adapted to the television screen than others. "Cool" personalities were good on the tube. "Hot" personalities were not. His definition of "hot" and "cool" was not always clear, but basically hot meant high definition.

"TV is a medium that rejects the sharp personality," McLuhan wrote.

Trudeau's inscrutability, his quiet, elusive persona, made him a natural for an intimate medium.

"You don't talk on television the way you would in a cavernous hall," says Donolo.

"With television, you're invited into people's living rooms and you're having a conversation with them. It's as if you're having 20 million one-on-one conversations, as opposed to addressing 20 million people."
The article was written about Iggy's image vs. Trudeau, but many of the same things can be applied to Mr. Harper. Warren was contacted for this article, and shares some thoughts...
In the hurly-burly of a leadership race, however, he couldn't get away from his favourite mode of self-presentation, which was the lecture hall. There he was superb. But those 20 million people into whose living rooms he was entering via television did not want to be lectured.

The repeated sight of an intense Ignatieff, gripping the podium, with a look in his eyes that was almost scary – a look intensified by his occasional breaking into a toothy, mirthless smile – was far too hot for their television screens.

Trudeau, by contrast, was often playful, especially when introducing variations on the theme of his sex appeal. The rose on his lapel was an iconic image of that playfulness and a kind of imaginative daring, along with the pirouettes behind the Queen and the cape he wore to the Grey Cup game.

"The rose was clearly a deliberate ploy on the part of Keith Davey and his other campaign strategists, who understood the power of the image and traded on it," says Warren Kinsella, former aide to Chrétien and now a political consultant.

Same thing with the cape, which made Trudeau look like a dandy. "That again was deliberate," Kinsella comments. "It's not as if the guys in the stands loved Trudeau when they saw that cape, but they probably admired his balls in wearing it. That's using the image almost in a counter-intuitive way."

Political campaigns, Kinsella knows – and McLuhan understood – are wars of images. Kinsella's own use of Barney the Dinosaur to mock Stockwell Day's alleged Creationist beliefs is a famous instance."
He goes on to point out some of the mistakes made by Iggy during the race, and points out a few things that we could/should/MUST learn from. TVO's Wodek Szemberg contribues with some similar lessons from the 2000 US Election between Al Gore and George W. Bush... lessons that could very well apply to the upcoming battle between Mr. Harper and Mr. Dion...
"What Ignatieff clearly needed was a defining image. 'The suspicion was forming during the leadership race that he was out of touch, a foreigner who had never used public transit and was completely disconnected with the lives of Canadians,' Kinsella recalls. 'He needed something iconic to counter that suspicion.'

Ignatieff failed to come up with that iconic image for the same reason, probably, that he could never come across on the television screen as relaxed and comfortable in his own skin. In McLuhan's terms, he could never cool down.

Instead he gave the impression of living completely in his head, with his faintly unreal alarm over the rift between rural and urban Canada – all the while secretly regarding the whole leadership race as a trial.

"It's a crazy business, politics," comments Kinsella.

"People who submit themselves to it should have their heads read. So you've at least got to have fun."

Ignatieff clearly did not have fun. It may have been because he felt, running in this leadership race, that he was violating his inner nature. TVO producer Wodek Szemberg recalls a recent conference in Boston in which Al Gore appeared, and in the course of his address mentioned Theodor Adorno and the Frankfurt School, among other high intellectual references. "I understood why he lost the election in 2000," Szemberg comments. "Gore likes being smart much more than he likes being popular."

In that case, you can expect to be beaten by George W. Bush. Ignatieff has a similar problem. He may not yet be reconciled to the role of political campaigner, to the reality of saying things to a television audience that he would never think of saying in the lecture hall. This may also explain his well-publicized gaffes.

"There's a case to be made for some sort of self sabotage on Ignatieff's part," Szemberg comments. "He began by telling himself, `I will sacrifice my freedom to speak my mind for the possibility of landing a powerful position that will allow me to accomplish things in other ways.' Perhaps in the end he was not certain that he was willing to make that trade."

One thing you can count on: If Ignatieff ever does reconcile himself to the role of politician, he had better take another look at McLuhan.
There's a LOT of really good stuff in this article... stuff that we in the CPC ignore at our own peril.

That's what we need... the quintessential, regular "Joe Canadian" image of Mr. Harper that we can push and push and push and push, right up until next election day.

Maybe we can line up a couple of photo ops or announcments at Tim Horton's...

Anyway, any thoughts about my title? Could Mr. Harper be the long-awaited answer to Trudeau? Having read a fair bit on both men, Mr. Trudeau and Mr. Harper, the similarities are striking. Their ideological differences are, of course, just about as far apart as you can get, but where Trudeau was brilliant regarding bread and butter Liberal issues, so too is Harper on bread and butter Conservative issues.

Fire away... comments, please.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

CTV - "Conservatives may move on carbon emissions"

This would be a good chess move for Harper.

NOT that I've converted into a Kyoto supporter... but Canadians say they want reductions in GHG emissions... and it's the Government's job to give the people what they want. (though if I had a chance to talk to most of them, I'm sure I'd convert them to my anti-Kyoto stand... at least regarding a ban on international carbon credit trading...)

We're not going to the polls anytime soon... just watch. The next budget will target the environment, the fiscal imbalance, and income splitting. I'd just LOVE to see the Liberals and the Bloc try to fight an election after torpedoing THAT kind of budget...

"Yes, I believe I'll try some of that majority over there on the silver platter, if you please..."

Late 2007, or early 2008... to avoid a conflict with the Ontario election. (though right in the middle of it might just tick off enough voters to work in our favour...)

Tonights serving of BIAS on the CBC

Wow... does the host of CBC's Sunday Night, Carole MacNeil, always have that look of mocking distain when talking about the Conservative Party?

The smirk was so overt... no effort whatsoever to hide it. Their lead story tonight? "The CBC has learned that the Conservatives want us to stay in Afghanistan for years and years and years".

Actually, that's not what they SAID... but it's totally what they implied.

An "Access to Information" request was made by the CBC, to get a look at the Military's overall plan/timeline in Afghanistan. It calls for more support, including possibly air support, and sets out a set of goals/conditions for success... goals which may take more than the two years they have left in the mandate.

And who do they interview for their report? Why, the LIBERAL Defence Critic Denis Coderre, naturally...
"There are still many questions, said Denis Coderre, the Liberal defence critic, adding that if the government wants to meet its military goals, it will have to extend the mission.

"When you look at the end state of that paper, long term means exactly that," Coderre said.

The prime minister's office concurred with Coderre's comments, indicating success in Afghanistan will take time."
Guess what's going to be the lead story tomorrow... "Conservatives considering extending the mission in Afghanistan".

Just the whole line of questioning and commentary, it was nothing but a direct attempt to set up the Conservatives to take a hit in the polls... this was NOT journalism, it was a drive by smear... pure and simple.

Let's get the record straight... this is a MILITARY document, NOT a Party driven report. This is the same paper that would have been drafted REGARDLESS of who was in power... unless of course the Liberals, had they won the election, had voted to pull out already. (which, of course they wouldn't have, if they were in power... there would be no need, because it wouldn't get them anymore votes anyway)

Anyway, enough of that. Their second story? "The Conservatives launch attack ads".

Third story? "Ottawa announces plan for the Nova Scotia Tar Sands".

Did you catch that? "OTTAWA", not "The Conservatives". No, far be it for the CBC to actually give CREDIT to the CPC when we tackle an issue that has been left outstanding FOR OVER 20 YEARS. Not once, NOT ONCE, was the word "Conservatives" used. Meanwhile, there's Michael Fortier and Peter Mackay, sitting front and centre... they identified Mr. Fortier as "Michael Fortier - Minister of Public Works". No mention anywhere of WHICH Party it was in "Ottawa" that had made the decision to move forward on this file.

One of the most absolutely disgusting displays of slanted "journalism" that I have ever seen... and I've seen a few. I mean, come on.

The Ombudsman will be hearing from me on this one, believe me.

In Carlton's Model Parliament, the Conservatives introduced a bill for the partial privitization of the CBC. I wasn't fully behind it, but supported it with some reservations. (The bill was narrowly defeated... just because the Reformers said it didn't go far enough)

THOSE RESERVATIONS ARE GONE NOW. It's time we seriously look at turning it into a fully private corporation... and let it sink or swim on it's own.

Irony is, the Model Parliament Liberals made a really good point for me about bias and the CBC during Question Period. They pointed out that it was the most popular broadcaster "in Toronto, Vancouver, Winnepeg", and one or two other cities. So I responded to them...

"Mr. Speaker, I thank the Honourable Member for proving our contention of the CBC's bias for us... each of those cities named, where the CBC is the most popular broadcaster, are infact, Mr. Speaker, strongholds of Liberal support. Would the Member opposite care to explain that?"

CBC, just report the news, don't spin it for us, thank you very much... that NOT WHAT WE PAY YOU FOR. (Remember us, the taxpayer? Your employer?) That's why I like Global National's motto... "WE REPORT... YOU DECIDE"

UPDATE: Well, looks like I was right... look at this little gem from the CBC's website... "Tories deny plan to extend mission in Afghanistan".

The CBC's drive by smear is COMPLETE. They CREATED this news story by obtaining the MILITARY, not Tory, document, release it, the CPC responds, and the CBC touts that the CPC is seeking to deny a secret plan they cooked up to extend the mission.

They just strengthened my case for the Ombudsman...

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Final John Baird Post

Oh yea, can't forget to post the pic...

One final funny story from the day... so I was outside for a bit "keeping the protesters company", and an older gentleman in a Toyota Prius pulls into the parking lot. Remember, these guys are protesting the Conservatives as being "environmentally unfriendly". He rolls down his window and says something to them, to which they reply with cheers of "YEA, PRIUS!!!", all of them supportive of this environmentally friendly older gentleman, driving an hybrid.

These cheers reduced me to gales of laughter... so I gently broke the bad news to these poor and deluded young folks, by cupping my hands to my mouth and yelling to them at the top of my lungs...


Thank you for your impeccable timing George... our former CPC riding president, and local CPC elder statesman.

TOYOTA PRIUS - $31280.00


Protesters at John Baird Lunch - belated post

Tried to post this a couple of days ago, but Blogger and Google Video weren't cooperating. So here it is... all references to "today" are obviously innacurate...

Took a couple of video clips of the protesters today... lots of fun.

While I was filming, I got asked if I was a part of the protest group. Honest,
my reply was the first thing that popped into my head...

They had a catchy chant going on at one point... "John Baird's Retirement"

No matter how much they try to sugar coat it, they hate us... they REALLY hate us. "Conservative Party has got to go". This clip is tame compared to what I've seen in other places, but you get the idea. It's not our policies they hate... it's us. Personally. Kinda sad, really.

Anyway, as a commenter pointed out, I did have some fun today. I spent some time out there chatting with the protesters, asking questions, and getting some clips. Just keeping an eye on them, lest things get out of hand... again.

The speech was in the same place where a major protest broke out against the Harris government a few years back, so the staff there were having none of it. They laid down the law right away, and informed them of where they could and could not be... and that they would be calling the police if they did not comply. They behaved.

Anyway, one of them, the apparent ringleader, was fairly well informed of the issues, and responded to my comments fairly intelligently... until I checked up on his comments. They were dead wrong. Funny thing is, he didn't deny my comments regarding Russia and Kyoto, and my comments about the whole carbon trading Kyoto weath redistribution scheme.

And when I tried to talk to them about actually DOING something, they just all went into the "It's Kyoto or nothing" rant... once again.

Well, I wished Mr. Baird good luck on the file... after seeing what kind of people he's up against, it looks like he'll need it.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Yet another cool Wii thing

Now I can get the news from the Associated Press right on my Wii console.

How cool is that.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Now this is cool... er, hot

U.S. unveils non-lethal heat-ray weapon

Talk about high-tech sci-fi kinda stuff. Readers of the later books in the "Left Behind" series might remember the "D.E.W." devices used by Rayford and Co. This is the real life version... though it is a little bigger...

It's a directed energy weapon... "The system uses millimetre waves (of energy) that penetrate only 0.4 millimetres into skin, just enough to cause discomfort." It raises the temperature of the skin to about 54 degrees celsius... not enough to injure, but enough to make anyone caught in it's path do anything they possibly can to get out of its way.

I'm all for new non-lethal toys for crowd control. Here's hoping they're available for the next G8 Summit... that would make for some great YouTube footage! LOL!

Today's National Post

Lots of good stuff in there today. Here's some highlights... some good news, then bad news, then good news, then more bad news.

"Harper hints he'll live up to equalization promise"

This is VERY good news... I'd personally be ticked if this commitment was broken. I personally think the media has druming up rumors for the last week, so I'm glad to see Mr. Harper finally pipe up on the issue.

"Blair backs down over gay adoption law"

This is in the print version of the National Post, but I can't find it online. Page A16... Tony Blair faced a Cabinet revolt when he proposed certain protections for Catholic adoption agencies. Perhaps a preview of what's coming down the pipes here in Canada? And you thought the SSM vote was the end of it...

"Liberals confounded by 'one-candle' Harper"

Well, I guess 'the one-candle man' is at least better than 'Mr. Dithers'... Don Martin had a few good thoughts about how Mr. Dion is floundering, but at the same time, the public isn't giving Mr. Harper too much breathing room... but that some are starting to warm to his way of doing things. "The Economist" thinks Mr. Harper is doing a good job... that's the same magazine that started the "Mr. Dithers" tag... remember him?

"Arabs, Muslims to mobilize against the Tories"

This is going to be a problem.

I find it ironic though, how standing up for the right of Israel to exist is automatically considered to be "pro-Israel", and thus assumed to be "anti-Arab". Huh?

When I say I'm "pro-Israel", as they say Mr. Harper is, I understand that to mean that while I disagree with some of the methods they use, I fully support their right to defend their very existance. It seems that some, on the other hand, think that Canada should be "neutral"... when in reality they are saying that we should butt out, and stop condemning the genocidal tendancies of certain groups.

It's real simple... acknowledge Israel's right to exist. So, I ask, if you're not, why AREN'T you "pro-Israel"? And why SHOULDN'T Canada be "pro-Israel"? Disagree with their policies all you want, as I sometimes do, but don't try to say that anyone who stands against terror and genocide is "pro-Israel", and then try to make it out to be a bad thing.

I think this is a case of electoral bullying... and I'm personally afraid it's going to work.

But if it means losing an election to stand up and do the right thing... BRING IT ON. I won't play politics with peoples lives... nor should anyone else.

Oh yea, one more point... notice how few attacks on innocent Israelis have reported lately? Maybe they're doing something right over there. (that, and perhaps the fact that Hammas has been too busy fighting with Fata lately...)

That's it for now. Let the flame wars begin...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Protest at John Baird Speech

Well, I don't know if you can really call 10 or so students skipping classes to picket outside of where he's speaking a "protest"... maybe a "friendly reminder of disatisfaction"?

Wow... a Conservative Minister of Environment, and former Harris Cabinet Minister no less, draws less than a dozen activists in a city that's known for it's activisim. Not bad!

I was going to post some pics, but Blogger isn't cooperating... look for them later tonight. And some video clips too... but Google Video wasn't cooperating either.

(Guess they're trying to force me to change to the new Blogger... grrr... oh well)

Off to lunch... with John Baird

How often does one get to have lunch with the Minister for the Environment?

See you all later!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Wow... that's harsh

Some thoughts about the former Prime Minister, from a former Liberal MP...
"Asked if he regrets accepting Martin's job offer and giving up his seat, Assadourian said: "I regret knowing him as a person."
Former Liberal adviser said he did no real work

Onetime Liberal MP Sarkis Assadourian says he never did a day's work after being appointed a special adviser to former prime minister Paul Martin.

Shortly before the 2004 election, Assadourian agreed to step aside in his Brampton riding so that a star recruit, Ruby Dhalla, could run for the Liberals in his stead. In return, Martin gave him a job as a special foreign policy adviser.

"They put out a press release and he said to the media and the nation with a straight face I was working with him as (his) adviser on the south Caucasus and Middle East," Assadourian said in an interview.

"The whole thing was a lie... I never a single day worked in his office. I was never paid a single penny."

Asked if he regrets accepting Martin's job offer and giving up his seat, Assadourian said: "I regret knowing him as a person."
h/t to Wudrick's Blog

Friday, January 19, 2007

Dion - "I knew nothing"

Interesting... why is it that new Liberal leaders always say that when it comes to the actions of the previous Liberal leader?

It seems that the previous Liberal government, then under the Right Honourable Paul Martin, which had a certain Mr. Dion in his Cabinet, was working on speeding up the regulatory review process, in order to help facilitate... the expansion of projects in the Alberta oilsands?

Hang on, that can't be right, let me check my sources, there must be some mistake... oh wait, no, this all took place BEFORE the 2006 Federal election... so it wasn't some sneaky Conservative plot to jettison Kyoto in favour of big oil and votes in Alberta. (like we need to buy votes from there anyway!)

How does something like that get missed by the Kyoto supporting Environment Minister of the day? Who was the Minister then anyway?

Well, here's what new Liberal leader Mr. Dion had to say about it...
"This meeting, (regarding the expansion of projects in the oilsands) if it took place, I wasn't aware. Certainly not," Dion said at a news conference Thursday.

"It's for sure that there are always discussions with the Americans on a number of topics, but I didn't receive a specific plan to multiply the use of the oilsands by five, or by two or three. Never as minister of environment did (this type of recommendation) arrive on my desk. It wasn't something that we were looking at."
Well, okay, so he knew nothing. Mr. Baird, would you care to comment on that?
"Either he was so out of touch, or he knew about it," said Baird in a phone interview. "If he played such a small role in the Liberal government that they could come to a deal with the Bush administration on something so significant that the Liberals would leave out the environment minister, it just makes you scratch your head... If he didn't know about it, why didn't he know about it?"
What's that line that Warren likes to remind people? Oh, right... "It's never the break-in, it's always the cover-up."


Thursday, January 18, 2007


And that's 3000 comments NOT including my replies... those would bring the total up to 3427. Congrats to Liberal blogger "robedger", who responded to some of my thoughts on Kyoto... prompting this post in response.

And the number of visits is up to 34,900... again, not including my own. Wow. When I started this little blog, I hoped that my random ramblings would find some form of an audience... but I had no idea how much would unfold as a result.

Here's hoping that something good has come from all this... and that only positive things would occur as a result from here on in.

Here's to you... THE READER!
(yea, I know... sounds like a corny line ripped from Time Magazine...)

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Model Parliament - Part II

And the story of my time at Carlton's Model Parliament continues...

(for Part I, click here)

Day two, and walking up the steps of the Hill that early in the morning was just as awe inspiring as I figured it would be. The whole ambiance of the place, inside and out, makes you just want to get out there and do your very best to try and make a difference, to try and make life better for each and every Canadian. And though it was just a Model Parliament, I still wanted to try and make a difference. I figured this weekend would be a good education, seeing how things really work inside the House... and maybe learn a thing or two about how the "other side" views things. Perhaps even find some common ground, from which we can work together to move things ahead. I sure got an education on that front.

So, first thing up was caucus. We prepped for the day at hand, which was going to involve Second Reading and the debate of the two bills at hand... the Liberals bill, Bill C-1111, entitled the "Kyoto Protocol Committment Act", and ours, which I don't have a copy of, but was a bill to privatize portions of the CBC. So, most of the team was there when I arrived, yacking back and forth. I did the Parlimentary Secretary thing... handle the Minister! "Hey man, could you score me a chocolate muffin?" while trying to walk a half dozen people through all our ammendments, fielding two dozen questions that would have been answered in due time had they just given Shane a chance to speak! "No prob man", and it was off for a muffin, that had been graciously provided. It sat there for about ten minutes until I told Shane, "Mr. Minister, just ignore everyone and eat your muffin." - "Yea, thanks man." - "No problem... just doing my job." I had gone there with the mindset of helping my Minister get done whatever needed to get done, and as a result, I think we made one of the better teams of the caucus. Anyway, we didn't have access to a printer or photocopier, so I had to madly copy down our notes off a laptop so we'd be ready to make our ammendments in the House. Oh, and since we had to hand a copy to the Clerk, we needed a couple of copies. Sore fingers... think of ten minutes until the end of an exam, with an essay question left to go. So, we got got that all done, then it was off to the House.

So, a guy named Chris was acting as our Clerk for the weekend, and he walked us through procedure and all. He helped us do everything properly and in order... the weekend would not have ran sucessfully without him. He was a cool guy... but more on him later.

First order of business was debate on the bills that had been introduced. Think of your typical arguments that righty and lefty friends have, in an orderly fashion... with a little bit of Question Period retoric thrown in for good measure. Our motion was to extend the Afghan mission to 2011. The Liberal Opposition tried to make the argument that there was no need to commit to that now... it was too far forward of a committment. We countered that funding for rebuilding efforts has already been approved into 2011, and that it makes sense that ensure that those helping to rebuild the country had the security they needed to enable them to do so. When the Leader of the Opposition touted the typical line, "Our troops should be rebuilding, not engaging in combat", I REALLY wanted to respond with, "Mr. Speaker, would the Leader of the Opposition care to enlighten me on how he expects our troops to dig wells and build walls while being shot at." (to which I'm sure the caucus would have responded with a hearty "HEAR HEAR!") Someone else responded, but I forget what they said.

Anyway, I can't remember when exactly we voted on the motion, but the vote came down to 58 POUR, 32 NAY... "La motion ADOPTE". The Independent Feminists supported us too, which surprised some of our caucus... made sense though, as the Taliban is, you could say, rather anti-feminist. (at least THEY get that fact)

Then it was time for lunch. Off for a coffee with a bunch of people, then hooked up with a contact, a cool guy who works on the Hill. Made me late for caucus... oh well.

During this caucus meeting, we were prepping our MP's for what was in store during the next session. Basically, "During QP, anything Kyoto, let Shane answer", and "Here's the plan for Committee." Some in our caucus didn't want anything to do with Kyoto, but we told them that we weren't going to take the anti-Kyoto tact, we were going to seek to modify the bill so the majority in the House, CPC, Liberal, RSSF, etc, could support it. And even if the Liberals didn't support the modified bill, then it would be killed... job done, either way.

The main thing that Shane and I wanted to accomplish was to ensure that there would be no means for meeting our "targets" via the trading of emission credits... my MAIN beef with Kyoto. So, the evening before, we had gone through the bill item by item, and basically, re-wrote it...

1) We updated the target date of 2012 to 2016, citing that we were unable to keep the original committments due to, as we put it, "10 years of innaction by the previous government."

2) We then planned to strip out the next clause about establishing a $1 billion dollar "Climate Fund", sought to modify the next clause regarding $2-3 billion for a Federal-Provincial projects Partnership Fund (can you say "Adscam II"?)

3) Altered their "hard caps" section to the infamous "intensity based caps", but only for a short term, writing into the bill a transitional phase to a hard cap system.

4) Hey, we're nice guys... we left their "Clean Air Plan" and wind generation sections alone.

5) We actually INCREASED their proposed percentage for bio-fuel content in gasoline and diesel from 5% to 10%.

So, after lunch and caucus, now back in the House, we had Members Statements, then Question Period. Then, it was time to see what it was like in the Committee phase of things, with a "Committee of the Whole", where the entire House sat in on Committee, debating and amending the bills at hand. Remember I said the other day, "The Liberals Kyoto bill never knew what hit it this weekend"? Yea, this is where that statement came into play. First clause, the name of the bill, we leave alone. Second clause, we ammend the dates, as stated above. Then, on the third clause, a little event occurred next to me that I will NEVER forget...

Enter Shameer. He was our Government House Leader, and he had come up with a little surprise that very few even in our caucus knew about... I think only the PM, Government Whip, and Shane our Enviro. Minister knew what was coming. He all camly stands up, paper in hand, and in a quiet and mild-mannered way says, "Mr. Chairperson, as the next two clauses related to matters of spending, I would like to have this bill ruled unconstitutional, as only the Government has the authority to make spending decisions."

I NEARLY DIED. I'm sitting there, holding my hand over my mouth, trying my best not to bust a gut laughing. Most of our caucus was looking around at each other asking "What did he just say?", while I'm sitting there dying. The faces of the Opposition were priceless. The Chairperson and the Speaker get together, and start pulling out various manuals from the Clerks desk, the Leaders of the parties get called to the table to try and figure out what they're going to do. Most of my party is still clueless, so I fill them in on the fact that we may have just gotten their whole bill tossed out off the table! Anyway, since that would have killed most of the weekend, and we had another couple of aces to play, we ended up sort of withdrawing that one, stating that our next ammendment would rectify the impass. But man oh man, Shameer is one that I'm going to keep my eye on, because if he might just go places if he's learned how to pull a stunt like that already!

Anyway, on we went. The next ammendment did fix the whole thing... "Mr. Chair, I would like to ammend the bill by removing section 4.1 completely". "All in favour?" "YEA!!!" "All opposed?" "nay." "In my opinion, the YEAS have it." And so went the NEXT HOUR. Finally, when all was said and done, our "new and improved bill", as I like to think of it, was ready. So, the final order of business was for Committee to send the bill back to the House for its consideration. However, as it was a bill introduced by the Opposition, they had to be the ones to send it back. So, as they were of the opinion that it was no longer their bill... THEY DIDN'T SEND IT BACK. Thus, there and then, the bill died.

It was a shame. I figured they'd at least send it back so we could debate it more, but they just let it die instead. We figured they'd take door number one or two, either support it in it's modified form, or vote against it on 3rd reading... but they chose door number three instead. I think it would have been better to send it back to the House for consideration, then perhaps we could debate and find some means of getting support. But alas, they chose what I refer to as the "It's either full Kyoto, or I'm taking my ball and going home" approach. No wonder it's difficult to get anything done in Ottawa.

Anyway, there's more to come, but that's it for tonight. Oh yea, almost forgot... somewhere in the course of the day, I ended up getting challenged to a "dance off".

Tune in later for the details! (how's that for a cliffhanger?) ;-)

More thoughts on Kyoto

Thanks to "robedger" for commenting... you've helped me formulate some of my thoughts on Kyoto. And now they're posted here for everyone's consideration...

Protection of this God given planet is indeed a high priority... but I don't believe that global warming is something that is unnatural.

I have affirmed on many occasions that I believe that our planet goes through phases... and that if we are starting to get warmer, we should be spending the money on adaptation, not seeking to prevent something that we have no idea whether or not we can even stop.

This does not make me "immoral", as you ("robedger") have suggested. It simply means that we view this particular issue differently.

As for the rest of the environmental issues around us... well, we've screwed up with this planet, and we have a whole lot of work to do. As for me, I'm doing my bit... for the most part, I bike or walk to work, I don't let my car idle, I do my best to recycle and avoid generating waste, I turn the lights off when I don't need them, I don't litter... as much as an individual can do.

But we need to do a lot more... that's why I support Mr. Harper's Clean Air Act. It's one of the most progressive packages ever introduced by ANY Canadian Government... I challenge you to find anything better. Does the Act fully address all the key points the proponents of Kyoto want? No, it sure doesn't... but the Environment is MUCH bigger than just Kyoto.

The Liberals, and those who tout Kyoto, are doing us a great injustice by making this one issue the be-all and end-all of Environmental responsiblity. In my opinion, there are a lot of issues that are more pressing... allowing Kyoto to completely take over the agenda is disgusting.

Today's Kyoto Reading

Interesting... "Why Global Warming is Probably a Crock". (just some commentary about the immature nature of the science of climateology)

And this is pretty interesting to... "Will the sun cool us?". Nigel Weiss, Professor Emeritus at the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge, and past President of the Royal Astronomical Society, believes that we are about to enter a phase of reduced solar activity, which would most likely see us enter a period of global cooling. (original article link here)

If these thoughts prove true, it would back up my notion that our climate patters are more cyclical than anything else... and that we should jettison Kyoto before it costs us another dime.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Red Star Headline: "'Green' Harper a ploy: Dion"

"Red Star" anyone?.
Do you honestly think the Star would use a Harper quote as a headline like this?

Yea... me neither.

Monday, January 15, 2007

CBC Harbouring Terrorists!

I KNEW IT! We've been accusing the CBC for years of being a leftist organization, but all the while, they've been hiding an even darker secret... they're a front for terrorists!
Shawn Majumder was finally exposed for his true self on tonight's episode of 24.
"Gemini award-winning actor/comedian Shaun Majumder's feature film credits include Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, The Ladies Man, Pushing Tin, and Purpose.

A regular cast member of This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Shaun's TV career has also included roles on Fox's 24, Relic Hunter and John Woo's Once a Thief. Shaun was also a regular cast member on Cedric the Entertainer Presents and Hatching, Matching & Dispatching.

Shaun is a favorite of Montreal's Just For Laughs Comedy Festival, having hosted the Just For Laughs TV series for three seasons. He lives in Los Angeles.
Most of Canada watching tonight's 24 was likely killing themselves laughing when they saw Shawn on the show... and our friends south of the border completely missed it. Shawn was all sweaty, he looked like his Raj Binder bit from 22 Minutes, minus the glasses. And I'm sitting here, watching, just waiting for him to morph in Raj Binder and crack the place up.

UPDATE: Well, he did crack up the place... he nuked L.A.

Way to go Shawn. Boy, I knew people at the CBC were anti-American, but man... don't you think that was a little over the top?

Model Parliament - Part I

This weekend was a total blast. I had a whole lot of fun, met some really capable people, who will likely play a role in the CPC in the years to come, and learned a whole lot about how the business of Government is actually conducted.

For the record, here's where I was sitting...

Okay, now on to what all went down.


Walking up the street, and coming into view of the Hill was really amazing. The place really causes me to take pause every time I go there. (I've been there four times before this) But walking up the steps, looking like an MP or a staffer (the whole bit... sharp suit, wool 3/4 length coat, I think I looked the part) We were told to use the main Senate entrance, and I got there behind three other people. From the looks of them, I figured they were Liberals... shows how looks can be deceiving! It was our Model Parliament CPC chief Party whip, Michael, and a couple of others from the Party. So, we all had to do the whole security bit... metal detectors, x-ray of our bags, to get our passes issued. Then it was off to the caucus room.


I'm told that the room we were using for the weekend was the Native Affairs Committee Room... I'm sure that's not quite the correct name, but I think you get the idea. Very nice setup, the room itself just brought everyone up a notch, I'm sure. It was the CPC caucus room for the entire weekend, where we prepped for sitting in the House.

The Senate Chambers

From there, we headed into the House... which for the purposes of the Model Parliament, was actually the Senate Chambers of the Parliament of Canada. Each and every time I walked into that room this weekend, you just had to slow your pace just to take in the surroundings. "I am standing, and about to take a seat, in the Senate of Canada. Wow." So, after finding a good backbench seat in view of my Minister (Shane, Minister of the Environment) we got underway. The real life Usher of the Black Rod came to open the Model Parliament, and gave us a speech about the Senate, and how he found himself to be working there... a long way from where he started, a boy from a small town on Cape Breton Island. A past sentator also gave us a brief series of comments... yet they still took the time to take a shot at Mr. Harper's plan to elect Senators. (They did each made a couple of good points on that issue, and I could agree with those thoughts... if the Senate had not, over the last 80 years, simply become the place where Liberals go to receive their reward for service in the Liberal Party of Canada)


Then, it was to the speeches of the main Party Leaders... starting out with our own Prime Minister, Derek. (we had the most members sign up, with about 49) Then the Leader of the Opposition, the Liberal leader, who's name escapes me. (we didn't have much chance to interact between parties outside of the House... which is a shame) So, the stage was set for the two main parties to square off.

Of course, there were the four other parties. First off, the leader of, and let me see if I get this right... the R. Socialist Syndicallist Front, (I forget what the "R" stood for) made his speech. By far, the funniest of all the leaders, and parties. Their motion during the weekend was for the Government to recognize the sufferage movement of robots... the "poor underclasses of toasters and appliances who for too long have had to bear being cursed at and kicked whenever they malfunction or ..." you get the jist of it. Most of their comments, questions, speeches, were completely over the top, but they added a whole lot of lightheartedness to the weekend that we most certainly needed. Of course, to them, everything was part of a Bourgious conspiracy... oh the hilarity that ensued. And no, to any members of the RSSF who might be reading this, I don't think that each and every city in Canada needs a union built golden statue of Lenin... or that cod stocks off the coast of Nfld. should have the right to unionize... you get the idea. It was great fun.

Then, the leader of Plato's Republicans. Now, before you get sidetracked by the "Republicans" part of the name, they shared NOTHING in common with the USA's GOP. Their opening question to the Prime Minister, in our first Question Period? "Mr. Speaker, I would like to know from the Prime Minister... does he know, 'The Good'?" Answer... "Mr. Speaker... No."

Then, the leader of the Western Reform Party. My oh my, this was a pretty funny bunch too. They had a young guy who looked, sounded, and spoke a little bit like Preston Manning... if he were jacked up on some kind of massive sugar or caffeen rush! He was hilarious! "Mr. Speaker, this Government bill to privitize part of the CBC, this bill doesn't go nearly far enough! When will this Government call for a national referendum on this issue so we can once and for all get rid of this one billion dollar a year money pit!" or something to that effect. He wasn't the leader, but he took on most of the speaking, and did a really good job of it. He got a standing ovation from many at the end of the weekend.

There was also a "Independant Feminist" party, but not your typical feminists. Modern, rational, reasonable, but too few in number to have an official speech. They still got their turn to say and do things in the House, however.

Question Period

Then, it was on to Question Period. Think of any real life session you've seen on the news and on CPAC, and you get the idea... we had the bit down pat. I overheard one of the Liberal guys saying afterwards, "Man, I'm really impressed at how they were able to stay so focused on the real CPC Party message." To which I responded, "Well, to be honest, most of us here really do believe in the Conservative Party... it's not hard to respond the same way when you believe the same things." The claping, the heckling, cries of "SHAME!" when talking about the past deeds of the Liberals, a few well placed calls of "HEAR! HEAR!" when touting the bills or motions of our model government, and a timely rising to our feet when a knock-out shot had just been made at the Opposition... boy, these guys were ready for prime time! Move over John Baird! And the Liberals had one guy who was a pretty good point man for them in QP... move over Mark Holland! He'd be one that I would not be surprise to see do things for them in the future... if we can't poach him, that is. ;-) He was fairly agreeable on issues, to which I'll speak more on in a later post.

So, they took us through the whole process. Question Period, First Reading of Bills, introduction of Motions, etc. It was really interesting. We sat in the House around 2:00, and we sat until about 6:00, if I remember correctly. Then, it was off to the Hard Rock Cafe... but, before that, my Minister and I had a bill to rewrite first.

Writing and Rewriting a Bill

Each major Party, the Conservatives and the Liberals, had the opportunity to introduce a Bill. Ours was for a partial privitization of the CBC. Theirs, was a bill seeking to affirm Canada's committment to the Kyoto Protocol. Of couse, most of our caucus was firmly against it. So, the position that we decided to take was not to turn this into a debate on whether or not Global Warming exists, but to take the bill, make it palitable via a series of ammendments, and then put it back to the House. We knew that some of our caucus would vote against it no matter what, so we couldn't pass our own modified bill. The thinking was that either a palitable bill would be passed with bi-partisan support, or that the Liberals would not support it... which meant the bill died anyway.

So, Shane and I took off to a local mall food court, grabbed some KFC, and got to work. Basically, we stripped a couple of money clauses (that were later deemed to be unconstitutional anyway), inserted a "no purchasing of international carbon emission credits" clause, and left their sections regarding increasing wind generation capacity, issuing credits for fuel efficient vehicles, and energy-efficient homes untouched. In fact, we actually strengthened their section on mandating 5% bio-fuel in all vehicle fuels (we upped it to 10%), thus making it stronger.

Anyway, that's enough for now... later, on to day two! (Second reading and "Committee of the Whole")

(to continue reading Part II, click here)

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Where I just spent the last three days

Talk about total coolness...

I just got home from spending the last three days in Ottawa... sitting in on Carlton's University's Model Parliament, conducted in the Senate Chambers of the Parliament of Canada.

And I was the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment. The Liberals Kyoto bill never knew what hit it this weekend.

A shout out to everyone that was there that I got the chance to work with, or oppose, this weekend. Stay tune for more details on the fun, and the serious discussion on real issues, that ensued.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Lapierre to Resign

It's official... Jean Lapierre will resign by the end of the month.

Making way for the "second coming" of Trudeau. I hate deja vu.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Shawn Brant - Deseronto Protester Profile

Global News in Toronto had just a brief blurb on the new native protest that has just started today near Kingston, Ontario. They cut to the spokesman for the protesters, and I recognized him INSTANTLY. His name is Shawn Brant... ring any bells?

He's the same guy who lead the bunch who blocked the CN rail line between Toronto and Montreal during the height of the Caledonia dispute. Remember that fiasco? I think it lasted just three days, but it threatened to become a major issue, as that rail line is a vital link for people and goods between Ontario and Quebec.

But wait, there's more! Did a quick Google search...

Did you know he's a part of the tobacco trade? True, not that big a deal... though the legality of this venture is still somewhat in dispute.

But the kicker, at least for me, is this... did you know that he's also a self declared border guard? Though I do use the term "guard" loosly... because the term "protester smuggler" would be a better term to use. During the 2001 Quebec City for the Summit of the Americas, a Shawn & Co. decided to try and open up a native bridge (between the Canadian and US sides of the border) on the Akwasasne reserve to protesters from the US who were denied entry at the Canadian border.

My point? This guy is a professional protester... nothing more. He has repeatedly shown that he has no respect for the laws of our nation... and he's asking us to respect his nation?

It's a two way street sir.

Thoughts on Three Parents

This guy, David Warren, poses some interesting thoughts in his article entitled "A straight line to polygamy".
"We will have legalized polygamy in Canada very soon. This is thanks to a decision of the Ontario Appeals Court last week that so far no one has had the stomach to take higher -- creating, in law, three parents for one child.

But it was inevitable anyway, given the tastes and propensities of Canada's revolutionary courts, and the cliques in the law schools that are steering selected "hard cases" toward them for the express purpose of overturning the civilized norms of many centuries."
Let's see what happens. Could it be that we "right-wingers" were right all along?

If you thought the Press was ticked before...

...imagine what this is going to do to them.
Financial woes force Press Club to go dry

"The stereotype of the hard-drinking journalist took a hit last night when the National Press Club in Ottawa announced it was suspending liquor and food service for financial reasons."
Not only are they cut off from the PMO, but now they're cut off from the booze. Watch for even angrier stories from hereon in.

That is, of course, until the election... the spoils of war will go to the campaign that has the best in-flight bar!

UPDATE: Thanks to a commenter who posted it on Kate's blog, this little post was found to be "Small Dead Animals" worthy. Cool!

From the "Haven't we seen this episode?" file

CBC is reporting that a band of mohawks have set up a blockade at a Kingston gravel pit.

Looks like someone said "Hey, it worked in Caledonia... let's do it again!"

For the record, I don't dispute the land claim in question... but I HIGHLY dispute the methods. Blockades and confrontations like this must be prevented, or they will become the normal course of action.

Of course, the best solution is to find a reasonable way for BOTH SIDES to compromise.

Nor is my faith shaken

h/t to Conservative Hipster.

For the record, the "Jesus Seminar" was a bunch of liberal "religious thinkers", getting together with their own preconceived notions on who Jesus was, and upon those notions, made judgements on Biblical quotes from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Just to reference another Biblical quote, this time from the Apostle Paul, "Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Has not God made the wisdom of the world foolishness?"

These are people who doubt the authenticity of the Word of God. So naturally, they're going to come to these kinds of conclusions. That's why most conservative believers reject their work outright... as I do.

Oh how about this one... bet they LOVE this passage... but just make sure you read THE LAST VERSE before you comment, okay?
1 Why are the nations so angry?
Why do they waste their time with futile plans?
2 The kings of the earth prepare for battle;
the rulers plot together against the Lord
and against his anointed one.
3 “Let us break their chains,” they cry,
“and free ourselves from slavery to God.”

4 But the one who rules in heaven laughs.
The Lord scoffs at them.
5 Then in anger he rebukes them,
terrifying them with his fierce fury.
6 For the Lord declares, “I have placed my chosen king on the throne
in Jerusalem, on my holy mountain.”

7 The king proclaims the Lord’s decree:
“The Lord said to me, ‘You are my Son.
Today I have become your Father.
8 Only ask, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance,
the whole earth as your possession.
9 You will break them with an iron rod
and smash them like clay pots.’”

10 Now then, you kings, act wisely!
Be warned, you rulers of the earth!
11 Serve the Lord with reverent fear,
and rejoice with trembling.
12 Submit to God’s royal Son, or He will become angry,
and you will be destroyed in the midst of all your activities—
for His anger flares up in an instant.
But what joy for all who take refuge in Him!

Psalm 2
But of couse, all this is irrelevant if this "Jesus Project" says that passages like Psalm 2 shouldn't really be included in God's Holy Word... if, of course, they even believe that it's Holy... or God's Word, or His only Word, for that matter...

Yea, my faith hasn't changed much due to these guys. If nothing else, it's only more resolved to not allow people like this to degrade and dishonour my Lord and Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Comment on the stomach bug

How's this for a comment about the stomach bug that's going around? "It just makes you feel like you're going to die," said Dr. Tim Booth, director of the viral diseases division at the Public Health Agency of Canada's national microbiology lab in Winnipeg.

Oh, is that all? Hey, no problem then, right? Excuse me while I go out and buy a couple of cases of hand sanitizer...
Public health officials, hospitals, Habs battling gastroenteritis outbreak

MONTREAL (CP) - Public health officials and hospitals across the country are battling an outbreak of viral gastroenteritis that has postponed surgeries and even struck the Montreal Canadiens line-up.

It's unpleasant and it's highly contagious, but it's not serious, say health officials, who are advising the public not to panic about the common virus making its regular winter appearance. "It just makes you feel like you're going to die," said Dr. Tim Booth, director of the viral diseases division at the Public Health Agency of Canada's national microbiology lab in Winnipeg.

Cases have been reported from Halifax to Saskatchewan.

"It's pretty much everywhere," Booth said.

In Quebec, about 200 health care institutions and several Habs players and staff have been affected by the outbreak while several hospitals in New Brunswick closed their doors last month to try to control the spread of the virus.

"It's not a good time, to have this disease, but most people will not have any complications," said Dr. Horatio Arruda, director of public health for the Quebec Department of Health.

Health officials believe a more potent strain of the Norwalk virus, or Norovirus, is to blame and similar outbreaks have been reported in Europe, the United States and Japan.

The highly contagious virus, which normally peaks between December and March, causes nausea, diarrhea, vomiting and stomach and muscle cramps that can last several days.

The Jewish General Hospital in Montreal postponed elective surgeries Tuesday and moved infected patients to a quarantined unit.

Other Quebec institutions have shut their doors to visitors to try to stop the spread of the virus.

Still, "it's not too much to worry about," Booth said.

Gastroenteritis is rarely fatal and many public health officials are relieved that the outbreak is not Clostridium difficile, a bacterium which has plagued the Quebec health care system in recent years and killed as many as 2,000 hospital patients since 2003.

So far, among the worst symptoms of the outbreak is a three-game losing streak by the Habs.

The virus hit the Montreal Canadiens just prior to a loss last Thursday night in Washington.

The team cancelled practice Friday and as many as nine players, including Saku Koivu and Guillaume Latendresse, became ill in the following days.

Coach Guy Carbonneau and some training staff were also sickened.

The team took Monday off to recuperate and the full line-up was expected to suit up for a Tuesday night game.

"Everyone's back to normal or close to it," forward Michael Ryder said Tuesday. "That's a good thing. Especially the way the bug went through players pretty quick. It was pretty devastating."

Arruda called on the public to help bring an end to the larger outbreak.

"This is a disease that we can prevent with good hygiene measures," he said.

People should wash their hands frequently and be particularly careful about food preparation, he said.

And if you feel sick: "Stay home."

©The Canadian Press, 2007

Blogger woes

Some sites, including mine, have been up and down all day. Lots of fun. Things have been stable lately, so I'm really hoping this isn't a sign of things to come.

Well, at least I'm not the only one, eh Calgary Grit?

Monday, January 08, 2007

Stem Cells and "Red Tory"

Red Tory has put up a post about a possible new souce of ethical stem cells. But instead of just hailing this as a fantastic breakthrough and celebrating, he had to go and turn it into an attack on us so-cons. Ever get the feeling that you're really hated by someone?

The basic premise of the article he links to is that researchers at Harvard may have found a new source of ethical stem cells, from amniotic fluid. I actually agreed with Red Tory on this... this is a GREAT thing. I've never opposed stem cell research, but I've ALWAYS been 100% against EMBRIONIC stem cell research... which involves the killing of the unborn to harvest the stem cells.

Anyway, I replied to him in his comments section:
"??? Why on earth are you so negative towards us so-cons? It's clear that you really haven't been listening in all this, so here goes...

The problem has always been with EMBRIONIC stem cells... I too see this report as a great breakthrough. When I heard it on the news, I stopped what I was doing, and said "FANTASTIC! Maybe now we can make some medical breakthroughs that don't involve the murder of the unborn."

It's not about finding "wedge issues", it has always been, and always will be, about protecting life. We so-cons just define life as starting from conception... even if it's in a petre dish."
Maybe there's hope for rational and reasoned discussion with his type on issues that matter, but with posts like his, I don't hold out much hope.

(and for the record, I really hope I'm wrong RT)

Dinner with Manning... Time is running out!

Preston Manning will be making two stops in SW Ontario in the coming weeks, one in Mississauga, and one for a fundraising dinner in Guelph.

There are still tickets available, but with The Honourable Preston Manning as the main attraction, they might go fast.

Dinner will be at 7:30pm on Friday January 27th. Tickets are $50 for members, $75 for non-members.

Be there!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Why we're in Afghanistan

Do you want to know why I think Canada should remain 100% committed to the mission in Afghanistan?

My wife and I just finished watching "United 93". Nuff said.

Don't you dare tell me we that should pull out until you've watched it for yourself.

It was just a small, deluded, extremeist group from within that faith that started this whole mess. And they're still at it... attacking schools, seeking to repress women, and blowing up our soldiers... who would, I'm sure, much prefer to be digging wells, and helping to rebuilding that devastated nation... the work that Jack Layton would prefer they be doing. You and me both Jack.

We can stop shooting and pull out once they wave a white flag.

WOW! I'm BT Site of the Week!

The honour is greatly appreciated, BBS!

I've been selected to be the first Blogging Tories Site of the Week for 2007, by Blue Blogging Soapbox!

I really appreciate the nod... it could of course simply be because I'm one of the last Blogging Tories around who hasn't been nominated... but I'll take it none the less. ;-) Great timing too, with my upcoming trip to Ottawa... stay tuned for more details next week!

Thanks again to all who have been checking out this "Wii" little site over the last while, and adding to the discussion in the comments. It's been fun!

Saturday, January 06, 2007

MONEY QUOTE from Andrew Coyne

Dion said: "You can't have a foot in the government and a foot in the opposition,"

Andrew Coyne wrote:
"No, indeed. The idea's absurd. It's like, I don't know, being Prime Minister of one country and a citizen of another."

ZING!!! I don't know about you, but I think that qualifies as ANOTHER gaffe, like the one I pointed out yesterday... "Khan is a committed Liberal".

h/t to wilson61, commenting on Jason Cherniak's blog

Mississauga-Streetsville Liberal EDA in Trouble

Was listening to CBC's "The House" this morning, and they had guest Khalid Sagheer on, who is the current President of the Mississauga-Streetsville Liberal EDA. During the interview, he stated clearly that he had come to no decisions of his own, and that he was planning to stay on as the Liberal EDA President. Then the host asked the following question... "Do you plan on supporting Mr. Khan in the next election?"

To which he replied, "Of course I'm going to vote for him... he's my friend."

Me-thinks they're looking for a new EDA President as we speak... my reponse to my wife was, "Wow, I think he just got himself kicked out of the EDA Board."

Sorry Mr. Sagheer, but you heard Mr. Dion... "You're either with us, or your with THEM."

Point proven, take a look at this already updated little tidibt from the riding information section on the Liberal website this morning.
In Your Community

[35051] Mississauga--Streetsville

MP: Your riding is currently not held by a Liberal Member of Parliament. Please Donate Now to help us win back this riding.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Dion - "Kahn is a committed Liberal"

It's GAFFE-TIME! A priceless quote from Mr. Dion this morning...
Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion told the CBC Friday he is confident there will be no such defection and that the MP is a "committed Liberal". " politics you hear many things and to me, Mr. Khan is a colleague. He will be part of the caucus; he will work in a positive way."
Well, Mr. Dion, let's just say that I REALLY hope that there are many more "committed Liberals" of Mr. Khan's type within your ranks!

I don't know about you, but I'd call that a gaffe... right? If you ask me, it's a pretty major one... he just proved that he's a poor judge of character of those within his own ranks! Yesterday, Mr. Dion gives Khan an ultimatum... "you're with us, or you're with them". Then today, he boasts that Khan is a "committed Liberal", mere hours before the man crosses the floor!

Then there's this...
Speaking to the CBC Friday, Dion made clear his position that it isn't appropriate for MPs to accept mandates from the Prime Minister while in the opposition.

"To me, we co-operate with the government, but we are not the government," he said
Well, Mr. Dion, I'm of the opinion that members of Parliament should work together MORE, not less.

If one of your members has certain skills, I'd be more than happy if Mr. Harper asked them to help out our nation... so long as the job could be done in a non-partisan manner. The NDP and the Bloc are WAY better than the Liberals at playing together in the sandbox. And yet he accuses US of being overtly partisan?

This is the guy who want's to run the country? Thanks, but no thanks, Mr. Dion.

UPDATE: Looks like Mary Nersessian at CTV has picked up on this too, but it's relegated to their politics blog. I'm willing to bet that had this been the reverse (Harper losing an MP to the Libs) this would be the lead story everywhere. gets Khan story wrong!

UPDATE: Perhaps I should update the title of this post to something more apporopriate... "DION Gets Khan Story Wrong!"

LOL!!! Perhaps some truth that the CBC is a Liberal propoganda machine?

Liberal MP with Tory advisory role will not defect: Dion
Last Updated: Friday, January 5, 2007 | 9:35 AM ET (NOTE, posted a whole 25 minutes before PM SH made the OPPOSITE announcement)
CBC News

Amid speculation that a Liberal MP is planning to cross the floor to join the Conservatives, Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion told the CBC Friday he is confident there will be no such defection and that the MP is a "committed Liberal."

Contrary to reports that Mississauga-Streetsville Liberal MP Wajid Khan had been wooed over by the Tories, Dion said Friday, "in politics you hear many things and to me, Mr. Khan is a colleague. He will be part of the caucus; he will work in a positive way."

An apparent point of contention arose over Khan's dual role as a Liberal caucus member and special adviser to Prime Minister Stephen Harper for Middle East and Afghanistan affairs. Dion had reportedly told Khan he would have to give up the advisory role in order to remain a Liberal MP.

Khan accepted the appointment under Harper in August, stressing his role as an adviser to the Tory government would remain non-partisan and that he sought approval from then Liberal leader Bill Graham beforehand.

Speaking to the CBC Friday, Dion made clear his position that it isn't appropriate for MPs to accept mandates from the Prime Minister while in the opposition.

"To me, we co-operate with the government, but we are not the government," he said, also noting that "I cannot blame [Khan] for something that happened before I became the leader."

Using information from anonymous sources, Tory blogger Stephen Taylor posted a report on his site Thursday saying Khan "is expected to make a formal announcement tomorrow and will likely describe that he is switching parties because of the 'values' that the Prime Minister represents."

Khalid Sagheer, president of Khan's riding association, immediately denied any such announcement was forthcoming and Taylor followed up with an update commenting that Liberals were working hard to keep Khan in their caucus.

Dion acknowledged he was aware of the blog report, but he maintained Friday that he had "no indication" that Khan would leave and that he planned to meet with Khan to discuss the matter.

Archived photo of article from CBC: