Archive for October, 2006

Extra! Extra! Read All About It: Peter MacKay May Have Insulted Belinda Stronach.

October 31st, 2006

Running the scoop of the century, Greg Weston today reveals that, while trading barbs with David McGuinty, Peter MacKay may have insinuated that Belinda Stronach is a dog.

On the day when newspapers were reporting that Jack Layton decided that environmental policy was enough to call a confidence motion, the day when Jack and Stephen Harper agreed to meet to discuss a Jack Layton environmental plan, the acceptance of which could mean a fall election.

But the Sun’s national politics columnist is all over Belindog-gate? Eleven days after what Weston himself calls an “otherwise trivial faux pas.” And why is this still the story? Weston is, on this point, most illuminating:

Finally, the fact that MacKay’s otherwise trivial faux pas in the Commons has endured as news for the past 10 days — anyone remember the Conservative environmental plan? — should serve as a wake-up bark for Harper and his communications strategists.

The PM’s obsession with message control and his open disdain for the media doesn’t leave a lot of goodwill with the hounds when things turn ugly. Kick a dog enough times, and sooner or later it will come back to bite you in the butt over nothing much at all.

This is still a story because the press gallery is fighting with Stephen Harper? Clearly this is not a trivial faux-pas, but a major admission by Weston – his judgement has become so clouded that he is no longer able to perform his job properly. Lets hope his boss is reading.

Which leads me to Conservative Life’s new sidebar image:

Meanwhile, the real news is here, and here, and here and, oh here! Even here.


Picture of the Day – Lantern! Jack- O Lantern!

October 31st, 2006

I Like the Conservatives too, but…

October 30th, 2006

I noticed it first late last week. Blogging Tory sites expounding on how the opposition should be working with the Tories. The theme: “Do we really need another election now?” Then today, The Sun took another tack:

Now Harper is lashing out at the Liberals for grinding his legislative agenda into the ground. The opposition has blocked major components of the government’s legislation, including its crime and accountability bills.

Ottawa is again abuzz with talk of a possible spring election. That would be the third trip to the federal polls for Canadians in four years. So where are the calls from the pundits demanding that the opposition politicians make Parliament work? Where are the dire warnings that the Liberals will be punished if they force Canada into another “unnecessary” election?

But us Tories poo-pooed those arguments last time, why is it our argument this time? As The Sun themselves point out:

Of course, as we learned this past January, the conventional wisdom preached by the nation’s commentary class was entirely wrong. Harper’s Conservatives kicked the Liberals out of power and won their own minority government.

So why are we not hearing the same again now that the rolls have changed? Maybe because the argument was proven wrong last time.

But then the letters of The Sun went further:


The Stephen Harper government was elected based on campaign promises that include, among others, federal accountability, fiscal responsibility and tougher sentencing for violent criminals.

Despite this mandate, the opposition parties have made a mockery of the system by fighting against the changes an elected government was put in place to enact.

The (mostly Liberal-appointed) Senate has held up the Accountability Act for months.

The costly and ineffectual long gun registry remains in effect due to Liberal fearmongering and calls for further gun bans, where diverted registry funds would be better served on frontline enforcement.

The Bloc, Liberals and NDP have gutted the proposed changes to Harper’s crime bill, making it essentially useless.

At what point does the government start functioning as designed, and the greater interests of Canadians get put above those of the parties or those special interest groups that support them?

The election of the Conservative minority government signaled a desire for change, change that has been continuously hampered by the opposition.

Robert Moerman


With a minority government the best you are really given is a mandate to try and govern, the Tories are doing that. The Liberals, NDP and Bloc never, ever said they would co-operate fully with a Conservative government (the Garth Party candidate, however, did). We Tories didn’t respect the Liberal minority mandate a year ago, why should we expect it to be respected now? The Tories are governing as best they can, the opposition opposing as they see fit. When the Parliament becomes an unworkable stalemate, it should be dissolved and taken to the voters.

Instead of complaining, we Conservatives, whether party members or just supporters, should be getting ready – because damn straight the opposition will be ready.


Canadian CD releases this Week

October 30th, 2006
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Tom Cochrane – No Stranger

While I have never loved Tom Cochrane, I have always admired his work, and have a few songs on my must play list. For some reason, however, I am looking forward to this CD.

You can get a sneak preview tonight on Q107, as John Derringer is doing a premier party at 10:00. If you aren’t in the Toronto area, listen in on the Q107 web site.

From A Singles Scene


Dalton McGuinty Disappears into a Hyperbole Vortex of his own making

October 30th, 2006
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The guy can sure give you a headache. Dalton that is. I’ve seen figure skaters do less twirling than this guy does:

“A lot of those people who used to run Queen’s Park, the ones who didn’t get what it takes to succeed in the 21st century, they’re back. They’re running the federal government. It’s kind of like a recurring nightmare,” McGuinty told the closing rally of the Ontario Liberals’ annual general meeting.

“I’m increasingly concerned they still don’t get it that they still don’t understand that it takes more than competitive taxes alone to build a high quality of life in today’s world.”

So, the federal Tories are the old Provincial Tories, who screwed up Ontario… Oh, except:

“It’s time to move beyond the childish blame game,” he said of then-premier Ernie Eves’s complaints about a lack of federal funding for the province’s health care system and infrastructure. “We happen to believe that we’ve got to set aside differences and work together in the interests of Ontarians.”

That was 2003. Dalton was in opposition and Dalton was complaining that “the Flahertys and Bairds and Clements” were passing the buck and blaming Jean Cretien for what ailed them. He was right then: a governments job is govern. He’s wrong now. Completely, totally, and in abeyance of his own advice, three years into his own administration, six months into a federal Tory administration, he’s still blaming… Mike Harris.

Mike Harris who sat this summer sat and gave testimony at the Ipperwash inquiry. Throughout the last campaign McGuinty promised the inquiry. One month into his reign of error, he called the inquiry into the past Ontario Governments handling of their Indian crisis at Ipperwash Provincial Park.

The inquiry is not yet complete, the findings not yet found. Dalton, however, now wants the same Harrisites, “the Flahertys and Bairds and Clements” to bail him out in Caledonia.

One tip Dalton. When you call people incompetent, it looks bad when you ask for their help. Like maybe you are even less competent. It look even worse when you do as they do, not as you say.


Picture of the Day – Playin’ For My Supper

October 29th, 2006
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Michelle Malkin Interviews Mark Stein

October 28th, 2006
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Mark Stein’s book tour detours to the internet, with a two part streming video interview. Great stuff:

Part 1
Part 2


Harper to opposition: "Stop Blocking Change"

October 27th, 2006

From the PMO:

October 27, 2006
Oakville, Ontario

In a speech to the Oakville Chamber of Commerce, Prime Minister Stephen Harper today laid out the government’s agenda and called upon the opposition to stop blocking change. “This is not what Canadians voted for and it’s not what Canadians want,” said the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister highlighted the legislation the government has brought forward in two areas of particular concern to Canadians – accountability and tackling crime.

The Federal Accountability Act, the most sweeping anti-corruption bill in Canada’s history, was the first piece of legislation tabled by the government upon taking office. With regards to tackling crime, the government has introduced measures to crack down on street racing, raise the Age of Protection, and keep dangerous offenders off the streets.

However, the Prime Minister added that the opposition parties are using the unelected Senate and committee meetings to undermine the government’s accountability and anti-crime measures.

“If the opposition disagrees with us, they should do it in the open, not in some committee meeting, not in the unelected Senate, and not by endlessly stalling a democratic vote,” concluded Prime Minister Harper. “It’s time for the opposition to be straight up with Canadians – why are you opposing accountability and tough measures against crime?”

Why indeed?


Greg Rae, meet Bob Sorbara.

October 27th, 2006
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The front page of today’s National Post provides two nicely contrasting stories side by side. The first has Bob Rae admitting he was wrong to increase spending . The second has Ontario’s present finance minister announcing that he will “spend up to $190-million to counteract an economic slowdown”

From Bob Rae’s “Not The Man He Was” in today’s print version of the post:

My Ontario government was one of many that inherited deficits, then thought we could allow further deficits to get us through the tough times. But “priming the pump” in an effort to create jobs does not work so easily in a globalized, open economy.

From Mr. Sorbara:

The new investment, is intended to speed up infrastructure projects, encourage tourism, promote business with Alberta and improve programs for laid-off workers.

Slower growth in the economy has a real impact on real people and the communities they live in. Our responsibility is to take steps that will mitigate that impact.

On the same day an ex-NDP Premier tells us that “priming the pump” doesn’t work, our present government is telling us they are… priming the pump.

The parallels are clear as well. The 1992 NDP recession, we are told, was an international recession. This one is, according to Sorbara, because of “a faltering U.S. economy and a strong Canadian dollar.”

It appears the lessons of history is lost on the incompetent.


Message from a Soldiers Father

October 27th, 2006
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On Oct 1st, after attending a Support Our Troops Rally in Toronto, I posted about being affected by seeing Errol Cushley, father of fallen soldier Pte. William Cushley.

At first, I didn’t notice the man standing in front, and to the right of me: Directly in front of Mr. Lightfoot actually. He had on a red shirt with a picture on the breast. Then Lt. Col. Cliff Trollop, the highest ranking officer in Toronto, and one of the people putting on the rally, came over and talked to him:

“I noticed the picture on your shirt, is it a relative?” The man, who I can now identify as Errol Cushley…

William was 21 years old on September 3rd, 2006 and had been in Afghanistan less than a month when he and three others where killed.

When Mr. Cushley told Lt. Col. Trollope who as on his shirt, Trollope’s head jerked as though somebody punched him in the jaw…

I cross posted this piece to Let Freedom Reign, where it recieved a few complimentary comments, then faded away. Until yesterday that is.

Yesterday, Errol Cushley replied with a gracious and moving comment that confirms everything I felt about the man watching him that day. In reposting here, I have cleaned it up a bit for ease of reading. The comment is towards the bottom of the Let Freedom Reign post if you wish to see the original. Thanks to Richard for pointing this one out to me; it helps me remember why I do this blogging thing:

Thank you for a very moving tribute to my son. I was not aware of it until I recieved an email from England who brought it to my attention.

I was at the rally soley for the purpose of my son, and all the other soldiers who put their lives on the line every day, and never had the intention to be in the spotlight. That honour is for the troops alone. I agreed to go up only because I thought and hoped that it would help get people behind our troops.

As you may know William was our only son. He used to say when I asked why he wanted to go on this mission, “pops i really want to make a difference.” I only hope that he has. So for all Canadians who care PLEASE SUPPORT OUR TROOPS. You do not have to believe in the mission to support them. I can tell you that the troops themselves do support the mission. They want it brought to a successful conclusion and then come home with the feeling of a job well done. If they come home before, then all like my son William will have died for nothing and the rest of the troops will come home feeling that they have failed. Our troops need to come home as hero’s , with thier heads held high and a feeling of a job well done. They are all hero’s to me.

Errol Cushley


Picture of the Day – I’ll Have What She’s Having

October 26th, 2006

Why Isn’t The Speaker Investigating David McGuinty?

October 26th, 2006

As long as The Speaker is listening to the tapes again, perhaps he could confirm whether David McGuinty was yipping across the floor while The Environment Minister was speaking.

Where I come from that is rude and disrespectful and, as the Environment Minister Rona Ambrose is a woman, a slap in the face of all women. Canadian women deserve better than to have arrogant men with lofty ideas and lowly positions yapping while they are trying to speak. Really, is it any wonder so few women go into politics?

I strongly feel David’s inability to let a woman finish a sentence reflects poorly on all McGuinty’s. If David McGuinty held any position worthy of resigning from, I would recommend he do it. Alas, he does not and we are forced to demand the resignation of his brother, Ontario premier Dalton McGuinty.


Blue Blogging Soapbox Blogging Tories Site of the Week

October 25th, 2006
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Garth Turner: Independent

October 25th, 2006
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I’ve had my say, both here, and on his own blog. My point, poorly made at times I concede, is that Turner stated very boldly during the David Emerson floor crossing that, a person elected as a member of one party should have to go back to his riding, in the form of a by-election, before switching to another party. Yesterday I used a variety of his own quotes to make my case, including one that’s being presented as reason why Mr. Turner is not joining the Green Party:

“Anybody who switches parties should go back to the people. To do otherwise is to place politicians above the people when, actually, itÂ?s the other way around.”

Now it turns out, Turner is staying independent because of those words:

So why exactly did Garth Turner decide not to go Green? Ironically, pressure over something he wrote on his blog…

Since National Newswatch first reported that Garth Turner would soon announce his decision to join the Green Party, sources tell us that he has been bombarded with emails from readers reminding him of something he wrote in the past. And that something?

As I have stated elsewhere, I like Turner. My point behind yesterdays he should resign post, was that the reasons for liking (or hating) the guy is he shoots his mouth off, but he backs up his words. By taking offers from the other parties, I felt he wasn’t backing up what he had explicitly said.

If this story is true, and Garth Turner is sitting as an independent, good on him. He belongs, he is a strong voice in Parliament, and it would be a lot less fun writing a blog without Garth Turner to kick around.

Besides, he actually appears to get some results, something very few Parliamentarians do.

h/t Joanne


Findley In… Stronach Out?

October 25th, 2006

“Coincidence,” Emma Bull said, “is the word we use when we can’t see the levers and pulleys.” Funny thing about this coincidence is, you can almost see the levers being pulled, the pulleys doing their bit.

The coincidence in question? At 9:45 this morning, someone from the Auditor General’s Office was peeking at my blog. They were searching “Liberal Leadership” “Debate Transcript” and came across my April 2006 archives. Curiosity got the better of this cat, and I sat and read my what I was writing six months ago. I found this one:

Serial Anglophile Belinda Stronach today announced she is out, OUT I say, of the Liberal leadership race, leaving nobody who is anybody left to run.

Hey, don’t say I didn’t warn you, but here it is, on February 3rd, I said no chance…

She didn’t like the rules, so she took her ball and went home. Which leads us to this little gem:

“This is not the end of the story for me. I’d say it’s the beginning.”

Do ya think Belinda? (Freudian slip, I originally wrote that Do ya think, Belinda?) In two years in politics you have, run for the leadership of the Conservatives then left the Conservatives in the middle of a confidence motion for a cabinet position. You spoke very ill of the party you left, burning a few bridges as you went. You where a significant part of the losing Liberal election, then very publicly mused about running for the party leaders job. Announced to the world you don’t speak a whiff of French, then quit because you didn’t like the rules of the game. I’d say the end is nearer than you think – you are starting to look like extremely flighty, moving from one thing to the next every six months.

My guess. The next time the Liberals are looking for a leader, Belinda Stronach will have left politics and moved on to “the next thing.”

“The next time the Liberals are looking for a leader, Belinda Stronach will have left politics.” Which brings us to today:

Rumour suggests that Liberal leadership candidate Martha Hall Findley has been quietly promised to be the Liberal candidate in the next general election in Belinda Stronach’s Newmarket – Aurora riding. The rumour suggests Stronach has no plans to re-offer in the next federal election…..for a variety of reasons…….

A variety of reasons? Like, it’s been a whole year with the Liberals, and the NDP don’t really want her. Perhaps, even the Liberal’s don’t want her anymore. Has anybody made more noise while accomplishing so little?

Whatever the reason, whatever Levers and Pulleys are at work here, it appears as if Ms. Stronach has lost interest in this little game and is ready to move on.

Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.