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John McCain…

… and Republicans like him?

They are unquestionable, prime, grade A assholes.

Yup. These morons are even more partisan than the Harperites.

Democracy sucks, eh Tea Brains?


Progressives do NOT advocate violence against those with whom they disagree.

The right does.

This is just plain sick.

Sure, we laugh at Harper and his minions. We made fun of Dubya and laugh at the religious right.

But I dare anyone to show me a recent case where a non-neocon has openly advocated violence – and the death of someone on the “other side”.

And don’t rhyme off Mao or Castro.

I disagree with the policies of the Harperites and the GOP, but I would never, NEVER wish any of them harm.

This is from the USA blog,

I know, I know! We liberals are just soooooo sensitive and we’re little crybabies! I mean, it’s not like we didn’t make fun of good ol’ Dubya while he was in office destroying the country or anything, right? Why are we always complaining every time there’s a picture of the President of the United States being killed or compared to a monkey? Can’t we take a joke?

Well, no, we can’t. Why? Because it’s not really a joke, is it? The savages on the right have advocated violence against liberals for years because nothing says “Ha-ha!” like insinuating that we deserve to die. That’s hilarious! First, it’s jokes about how killing liberals would be fun, then “jokes” about secession, then threats of “Second Amendment remedies,” then actual threats about secession and claims that liberals are going to start a war ANY second now. After that, we end up with another Oklahoma City bombing that leaves 19 kids dead. Yeah, it’s all fun and games until the shrapnel starts to fly.

What’s worse is that this is strictly a right-wing phenomenon. No matter how badly Fox News wants to convince its viewers that liberals are terrorists, it’s just not there. There are no liberals calling for conservatives to leave the country. That’s Republicans. There are no liberals calling for concentration camps. That’s the religious right. There are no liberals calling for a new Civil War. That’s the right-wing.

This is sick. And not the good “sick”.

How low can ya go?


This is hilarious!

If there is a reader out there who lives in the Tampa area, running off a few hundred copies of this and plastering it hither and yon wouldn’t be a bad idea!

America, the rest of the world is laughing at you.


End of the week miscellany

Looks like the congressional elections in the States this fall might prove to be interesting.

With the rise of the über-right-wing-nut Tea Party whack jobs, the GOP nominations are facing ideological splits, and this may harm them mightily at the polls.

It encourages me to see that there is still some sanity within the ranks of the Republicans.


Question – Why doesn’t McDonald’s sell hotdogs? It seems like it would be a no-brainer.


Here at home, Harpy seems to be trying to dare the Opposition into forcing an election through a non-confidence vote over the detainee documents issue.

While the robot was initially all “sure, whatever the Speaker has ruled is something we’ll live with”, he has now backpedalled…

Initially, Harper said he “looks forward to complying” with the ruling, adding that he’ll consider any reasonable suggestion that will give MP’s access to the documents while protecting national security.

But he later said that the government may prevent the release of all of the requested documents.

He also said that the other parties can have a vote of non-confidence on the matter, possibly sending Canadians to the polls.

No big surprise, though.  The politics of cynicism is Harper’s specialty and if he senses a bullying and polarization opportunity, then he will go for the jugular. Don’t take the bait, dudes of the Opposition… it is exactly what the Harperites want!


Question: If you had an envelope that someone told you contained the date of your death, would you open it?


This is interesting.

Bilingualism in Canada’s Public Service has long been a sticking point for unilingual folks.  Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to be bilingual to get a job in the PS, but you do have to learn your second language if you want to advance up the food chain.

The latest debate is about whether new Supreme Court Justices should be bilingual.

Bill C-232, a private-members bill, would require that any future Supreme Court justice “understands French and English without the assistance of an interpreter.” It passed the House of Commons last March, with the opposition MPs uniting against Conservative MPs, and is now being considered by the Senate.

As long as we have the English/French duality in this country, we will have debates like these. But as long as Canada is n officially bilingual country, we need to require those in charge of the ship of state to be capable of communicating in both of the founding languages.

Yet, like we can see with the language requirements in the PS, many very well-qualified people would be automatically excluded from the bench of the highest court in the land because they cannot conjugate an irregular French verb. And that to me is a pity. Only 7 per cent of Anglophones outside Quebec speak both official languages, and most of those live close to the Quebec border, meaning that if you are a highly qualified judge who is from somewhere west of the Ottawa valley, your chances of being a Supreme Court Justice are slim unless you are one of the rare ones who speaks both languages.

The fear in this matter is that there is always a danger that language will trump everything – including ability – and that while we may appoint a judge qui peut dire «il faut que je sois bilingue», they may not necessarily be the best person for the job. Me, while I do support the requirement that senior members of the PS and those who interact with the public on a daily basis need to have level of proficiency in both languages, I don’t think the argument that “a unilingual English judge has only limited access to the large body of legal commentary and scholarship written in French” is strong enough.

But that’s just me.


Question: How do you handcuff a one-armed man?


Finally, here’s hoping the Habs make a quick exit from the playoffs! If there is one thing more annoying than Sen fans, it’s a fan of les glorieux (moi, je préfere les pathetiques…)


Damned socialists! They’re everywhere!

Yet another glaring example of right-wing paranoia is rearing it’s many-eyed head in the States. No death panels this time, though. Rather, President Obama is being accused by the wacko right of trying to “indoctrinate” America’s kids as part of some sort of socialist plot to take over the country. Or all of the IHOP franchises in the Greater Milwaukee area. Or something el se. I dunno. The goals ain’t clear.

This socialist speech exhorts America’s kids to engage in the following repulsive and seditious activities:

  1. Study hard.
  2. Don’t let failures define you.
  3. Pay attention to your teachers.
  4. Don’t quit on yourself.

Brrrr…. shadows of Lenin, Castro and Trudeau are looming! Of course, only loony-tunes are spouting off against the speech – like this moron from Texas, for instance.

“I don’t want our schools turned over to some socialist movement,” one father in Texas told the press, as if the elected leader of the free world were part of a secret Bolshevik cabal.

OK. Well, obviously this guy is just out of one of those places where padded rooms and happy pills are the norm, right? Shurely he doesn’t speak for the GOP? Right?

I am appalled that taxpayer dollars are being used to spread President Obama’s socialist ideology,” declared the Republican Party chairman in Florida, Jim Greer, calling Mr. Obama’s planned broadcast from a school in Virginia an attempt at “indoctrination” that made a sneaky end-run around American parents to reach their children, and thus represented an “invasive abuse of power”.


Since when is it an issue for a person who is respected by many in his country and indeed around the globe to try to inspire young people? Would the Republicans and their minions prefer the President to tell students to do the following?:

  1. Slack off.
  2. Your failures are who you are.
  3. Treat your teachers like crap.
  4. When the going gets hard, give up.

Of course not.

But, just like the ridiculous images of “death panels” that the wacko right have been throwing around, this self-righteous indignation is designed to widen the schism in American society. That between liberals and conservative, black and white, rich and poor and urban and rural.


A lion is silenced

As much as the American political system befuddles me from time to time, I have always been an admirer of many of its fine orators. A giant among these was Edward Kennedy.

If only we in Canada could produce politicos that can use the spoken word so eloquently. At one time we had Trudeau and we had Broadbent. But who but the most partisan could honestly favourably compare the vocal skills of any of our current political leaders with theirs? And compared to the Kennedys, Ronald Reagan, Jesse Jackson, Martin Luther King Jr., and, of course, Barack Obama, we Canadians can only watch and admire – but never equal.


Double standards – Presidential security

There is a painfully clear difference between the thicknesses of the security envelope that surrounded George W. and that which protects the current President. The recent presence of a protester with automatic weaponry at a Arizona rally at which Obama was speaking speaks volumes to how things have changed between the 43rd and 44th Commanders-in-Chief.

Here is some coverage of a 2002 Bush visit to (coincidentally) Arizona:

On a campaign swing through Arizona on September 27, President Bush was met by hundreds of protesters in both Flagstaff and Phoenix who addressed many issues but chiefly opposition to war. Reuters reported that, “As Bush addressed the Iraq situation in Flagstaff, a protester shouted out ‘What’s the real reason Mr. Bush — oil money?’ She was quickly led away.”

In Phoenix, police on horseback moved to reign in the protest crowd as it flowed off the sidewalks, provoking the arrest of six people, including legal observer Eleanor Eisenberg, Executive Director of the Arizona Civil Liberties Union.

And in Cincinnati:

When Bush delivered a major pitch for war in Cincinnati on October 7, up to 5,000 people protested outside the Museum Center while he spoke. When most of the crowd returned to nearby Laurel Park for a closing rally, a few hundred blocked the exit from the Museum Center. Police on horseback rode through the crowd to disperse it, and arrested six people by one account.

And here is what all the stylish folks are taking to protests where Obama is speaking.


Why is this so? Are the Secret Service under orders to let rednecks be rednecks and let it ride? Have the rules concerning Presidential security changed – as in become laxer? I doubt it. Budget cutbacks?  I hesitate to pull the race card because I think that if anything, Obama’s race would guarantee him MORE security not less due to the overt and implied threats against him because of the colour of his skin.

According to a recently published book, The President’s Secret Service, by Robert Kessler, former President George W. Bush received 3,000 realistic threats a year. The author states threats against President Obama have increased 400%.

Here’s my theory: I think the president has given orders that the gun-totin’ rednecks be left alone so the Administration does not to appear too anti-gun in the eyes of the public. In America, to be anti-gun means that you are anti-American and by corollary, anti-freedom. It is enough of an uphill battle for Obama to avoid being bogged down in the partisan quagmire that is Washington D.C., let alone being tagged as actively anti-gun. Many swing areas that voted for him would swing back to the Republicans on that issue alone.

What a marked different between my country and that to the south. Many in the United States – helped by an unbelievably powerful gun lobby – live by credos that were set down hundreds of years ago by their nation’s founders. The anti-Obama caste likes to use this national allegiance to anachronisms and myths to its utmost advantage.

Last week, a man with a gun strapped to his leg held a sign outside an Obama town hall meeting in Portsmouth, N.H., that read: “It’s time to water the tree of liberty.”

“The tree of liberty has to be watered with the blood of patriots” is a quote from Thomas Jefferson – a long dead and largely irrelevant man in the modern world.  Calling for martyrdom worked in a world of extreme violence, inequity, barbarism and Empire that was the 18th century; a world without a means to affect change without taking up arms. This world does still exist in many less-developed nations in places like Africa or the Middle East; where America is currently fighting wars against peoples that believe in martyrdom as fervently as did Jefferson. But that world is no longer relevant in 21st century America…as much as the right wing nuts would like its citizenry to believe it otherwise.

But what about the Fifth Estate, you say? That pillar of unbiased commentary that provides the necessary context to be used by the citizenry to make their own judgements?

Ah, yes.

America – grow up and smarten up.


Soviet Russians for Harper!

Since it seems that some folks aren’t buying the traditional ReformCon attack ad, the Harperites are trying something new

I new message slimed its way into my inbox last week from a group calling itself Republicans For Ignatieff. It purports to be a collection of American Republicans who are rooting for Iggy to get into the PM’s chair. My Harper-sense clicked in as I thought it extremely improbable that:

a)    Any Republican would know Iggy’s name
b)    Any Republican would know that we have a Prime Minister and not a President.
c)    Any Republican would have ever heard of “Canada”.

Upon going to the site that the message pointed to, I read lots of text about how Iggy was much more “America-friendly” than Harper and how his values more closely aligned with those of the GOP. I’m not going to repeat the rubbish here. You can go to the site to see it for yourself.

However, I can’t let this go by without some kind of retort. So, I proudly present the launch of a new lobby group that I like to call…

Soviet Russians for Harper


Until the wall came down, the Soviet Union and Canada had the closest bi-national relationship in the world. Yes, we hated each other’s hockey teams, but we still respected them.

Stephen Harper, 1997


* Russia and Canada share the polar icecap
* For the past 36 years we’ve been playing hockey against one another.
* And, thanks to the tar sands, Canada is an ally with a growing supply of energy.

In short, we’re friends, we’re neighbours and we’re allies.

Now more than ever, Russia needs a Canadian Prime Minister we can count on. A Canadian Prime Minister who knows us. A Canadian Prime Minister who loves us.


“Now, this is coming from a Canadian who is not even a citizen of your country, but someone who has loved this country.”

Stephen Harper

(Lecture to the Russian Naval Academy. March 2001.)


Stephen Harper is the best choice for Canadian Prime Minister.

Although born in Canada, Harper has always been fascinated by Soviet Russia.

* As a young man, he believed in the Fatherland in a way that Canada never allowed.


“I loved my own country, but I believed in the Soviet system in a way that Canada never allowed”

Stephen Harper, 2002


* While living in the Canada, Harper pined for the CCCP, saying “Someone like me does not exist in the Soviet Union and that seems to me to be terrible.”

Stephen Harper, 1988

(The Toronto Sun, February 28, 1991.)


* Once in Russia, Harper called it his country on national television.

* And when speaking to a Soviet Military Academy Harper said he “loved” The Great Bear to such a degree that he was thinking of changing his name to Vlad.


“Now, this is coming from a Canadian who is not even a citizen of your country, but someone who has loved this country.”

Stephen Harper

(Lecture to the Russian Naval Academy. March 2001.)


Stephen Harper has not only been supportive of Russia he has also been very supportive of Soviet ideas and causes.

* He stood with us on Iraq.

* He defended torture, including coercive interrogation.

* He agrees with the governance model that emphasizes strength, coercion and intimidation.


“To defeat evil, we may have to traffic in evils: indefinite detention of suspects, coercive interrogations, targeted assassinations, even pre-emptive war. Even nasty attack ads!”

Stephen Harper

(The Walrus, May 2004.)


*He loves the tar sands.

“I think the best way to show our love and respect for our Russian comrades is to jointly exploit these valuable resources. And those ducks will just have to deal with it.”

Stephen Harper, Calgary Stampede, 2008


Join Soviet Russians for Harper today and show your support for Stevo. He’s the right choice for Canada, the right choice for Russia, the right choice for Soviets.



Victoria – great name for my eldest kid, but not for a national holiday!

Here in Canada, the celebration of the birthday of a long dead and foreign Queen is more likely to be called the May 2-4 weekend, the May long weekend, cottage opening weekend or the “Holy shit, the blackflies are out” long weekend.

However you dice it, the three days away from the labours of labour are a welcome break for those of us that don’t slave away in jobs that really don’t get “breaks” like these… cops, firedudes, bartenders, hookers, etc.

And I, like everyone else, LOVE it! In fact, I’m taking an extra leave day tomorrow (Friday). The weather forecast is favourable to doing some much-needed lawn and garden work sans enfants et sans ma femme! I may even take a break and hit the gym too! A whole day to myself and then THREE more to boot!!!  Woo-ho!

But wait! What is that grumbly and gravely sound of discontent that is simmering just below my conscious glee? Oh yeah. I remember. I still get pissed with the fact that we have yet to find and agree upon a better occasion to celebrate other than a dead foreign Queen’s birthday! Plus, just look at her! If she was even a little bit hot or super smart or something, then maybe I’d ease up a bit. But just look at her!

vicYeah, yeah – I know a bunch of you neo-monarchists (ain’t that a contradiction?) are simply aghast that once again one of we republicans dare to mention foul things about the sacred monarchy – and only days from that special day itself! Oh, I feel my billowing petticoats singing in disaccord!

But c’mon. Get real. Get real as in 21st c. real.  Can we not celebrate something a little more, uh, Canadian for this most Canadian of days? Why do we and our elected representatives insist on avoiding this issue because we fear the wrath of the angered mobs of Monarchist League of Canada members riding their motorised scooters to Parliament Hill?

Aren’t they all or shouldn’t they be all dead by now?

I’ll answer by own question – no. They aren’t all dead and I know a couple of misguided souls who are sub-70 in years and who are simply enthralled by the pomp and ceremony that the monarchy offers.  I guess that might be a reason why catholics are attracted to the papacy… the white gowns, totally sick bling and totally pimped out cribs will do that to some folks.

Anyways, in the name of coming up with some more reasonable and less-dead things to attach to the weekend. And risking life and limb – I know – here are some suggestions… feel free to add and maybe I’ll compile a list and send it off to my MP.

o    National Hockey Day
o    National Blackfly Day
o    National Beer Day (after all – May 2-4 is the May 2-4)
o    National It’s Almost Spring in Manitoba Day
o    Pierre Elliott Trudeau Day (bet that would go over well in Red Deer!)
o    Cottage Opening Day