Friday, July 30, 2004

No more Subway for me 

Certainly until they stop this advertising campaign:
Why Are Americans So Fat?” Headlines Tray-liners in German SUBWAY restaurants

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today the National Legal and Policy Center called on the SUBWAY restaurant chain to immediately stop a European advertising campaign designed to exploit anti-American sentiment in countries like Germany. SUBWAY restaurants in Germany now feature tray-liners and posters promoting the film “Super Size Me.” They portray an obese Statue of Liberty holding a package of fries and a hamburger and begin with the bold headline “Why Are Americans So Fat?”

“SUBWAY has defined a new low in corporate behavior with this campaign,” said Ken Boehm, Chairman of the National Legal and Policy Center. He continued, “Inflaming cultural tensions to increase market share is immoral and dangerous. Americans deserve to know about SUBWAY’S campaign to insult us abroad and to attack our national symbols.

“We agree with House Majority Leader Tom DeLay when he says, ‘This is every bad stereotype about corporate America come true.’”

The National Legal and Policy Center provided a translation of the tray-liner and announced that it would open an investigation into SUBWAY and its financial connections with the film “Super Size Me” and its director, comedian Morgan Spurlock.

To see the actual tray-liner, visit www.nlpc.org. The translation of the tray-liner is as follows:

HEAD: “Why are the Americans so fat?”

Michael Moore quote: “The only time I have been scared for my life has been going through a McDonald’s drive-thru.”
Update:Subway has pulled the offensive material:
Sandwich chain Subway Restaurants on Monday said it was ending a promotion at its German franchises that used an image of a fat Statue of Liberty.
Okay, all is forgiven. Enjoy your subs.

On Kerry's speech 

as Lileks says: I liked it better in the original French.

He'd be an improvement on France's current President, but I'm not sure that's the kind of praise he's looking for. It sounds to me like he took an hour to say he's a protectionist, Big Government liberal who will cut and run from any foreign engagement France won't participate in. I don't think that's going to cut it in November, but you never know.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

A gaffe is when you tell the truth 

I’m sure everyone remembers the reaction to Jacques Parizeau’s speech when he blamed the 1995 referendum defeat on the ethnic vote. Given that, I find it fascinating that the CBC would see fit to host this fascinating column by Larry Zolf:
Dosanjh reflects Martin's unparalleled strength with Canada's ethnic groups, a historic first. Martin was determined to reward his loyal ethnic following in caucus and he has done so on a grand scale. […]

The ethnic groups in the Liberal party are the main hope for a Martin victory in a run-off election. They constitute a large number of the 75 Ontario seats carried by Martin in the 2004 election. They also hold the key to a large slice of the 21 Quebec seats Martin carried in 2004. […]

Martin is not forgetting who saved his bacon in the election. Martin can't help but return the ethnic love and affection for him and he has done so in his minority cabinet. He realizes the ethnic vote is a fundamental of Liberal politics and he must cater to it if he wishes to survive as prime minister. […]

Martin must also be careful not to go too far in his love affair with the ethnics. […]

Still, it's nice to have the ethnics on board the good ship SS Paul Martin. The ethnics make good and loyal ministers. They bring with them a joy of life and a culture of winning.
The problem with Parizeau’s statement wasn’t that it wasn’t true, ethnic votes did indeed vote massively No. The problem was in the tone and the us-versus-them formulation he used, including talk of revenge, which exposed a very unattractive aspect of Quebecois nationalism that most people are not proud of.

The problem with Larry Zolf’s column is quite different. He’s saying what everyone knows but the Liberal Party and the organs of the Canadian government don’t like having said out loud. It brought this response from Warren Kinsella, making a valiant effort to spin the CBC's gaffe:
As a student of Canadian politics, I can attest to the fact that no Canadian political party - including the Liberal Party, now being breathlessly urged by Larry to "cater" to "the ethnics" - any longer regards ethnic communities as unintelligent monoliths, which can be counted upon to unquestioningly do the bidding of backroom party apparatchiks.
But of course Zolf said no such thing about the ethnic communities, he was talking about how the Liberal Party, and by extension the Government of Canada, caters (or panders) to them, not that they are unintelligent monoliths. The distribution of government largesse to ethnic and regional blocks is as central to the Liberal hegemony as sex is to the Kama Sutra. Warren also says this:
in 2004 A.D., every predominant Canadian ethnic group has done what one would expect (and hope) to happen in the new millennium - they vote for Liberals, Conservatives and New Democrats like everyone else does.
Which is almost true but again not really the topic. People in P.E.I. are not unintelligent monoliths either. And they don’t vote reliably Liberal because some patriarch has issued an edict. They vote Liberal because they’ve been promised the pork by the master porkmeisters. Appropriately “catered to”, as Zolf puts it. The largesse is different from every targeted region and ethnic group, as any good catering firm needs to know its customers, but the dance of corruption is pretty much the same. But I understand the Liberal apparatchiks are probably not really happy with their CBC propaganda arm saying it out loud in such blunt terms.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

So is it a person or not? 

I find this story interesting, a midwife is being charged with criminal negligence causing death:
French Beach woman faces charges in relation to the death of a infant during an attempted natural childbirth at a Sooke home in June. […]

It is alleged Labadie presented herself as an experienced midwife for a woman who wanted to have a natural childbirth. The birth was the second for the woman. It was identified as a breech and natural childbirth was not advised by a doctor, Latham said. It is alleged Labadie acted negligently prior to and during the birth, which resulted in the death.
A sad tale to be sure, but this raises a couple of questions. Why is the midwife the one that’s negligent but not the mother? The mother was advised by a doctor to avoid natural childbirth as it was too risky, but she chose to do it anyway. Is this what they mean by a woman’s right to choose? The mother avoids any legal consequence of careless decisions but the midwife she hired bears the brunt instead. It certainly appears there were also poor decisions by the midwife, but these merely followed initial reckless course of action initiated by the mother.

I would also note that she is being held legally accountable for the death in this case, when she could have deliberately killed the baby in the womb without any consequence at all. Perhaps that’s the lesson midwives and doctors should draw from this case, given the current state of the laws in this country. A doctor or midwife facing a complicated birth may be tempted to kill the baby in the womb rather than suffer the legal consequences as this midwife has.

John Robson on Iran 

Sorry, no link but John Robson has an excellent column on Iran today:
The mullahs in Tehran are not frightened of effete liberals throwing hissy fits. They consider us decadent perverts and, as David Warren also recently noted, make no secret of preparing our demise. Like the Soviets, the reason they claim repeatedly not to share our values and act repeatedly as if they did not is ... But no. It cannot be. No one could disagree with sophisticated postmodern liberals, so it must all be George Bush's fault. And since we all scorn and despise Mr. Bush, a few frown beams from us and they'll be begging for mercy.

If arrogance were a source of leverage in diplomacy we would be a colossus. Instead, a nuclear-armed Iran would be stronger than Canada . Yes, stronger. Despite our shining armour of fatuous self-satisfaction. Our only real hope is that the United States will think it mean of Iran to beat up unarmed nerdy Canada . So having weakened America 's foreign policy at crucial moments, we are now down to a policy of "Morons. Bastards. Help!"
UpdateAfter thinking about this for a minute it's probably true the mullahs aren't afraid of the girlie men in cabinet throwing a hissy fit. I guess this goes to show you they really do have different values, because the sight of Graham and company on a hissy fit is something I'd do a lot to avoid.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

The truth comes out 

Thanks to reader Joel Fleming for the link to this. Fearless investigative journalists at Al-jazeera finally expose the truth:

Israel behind Kennedy's Assassination:
Vanunu is said to have made the accusation in an interview to al-Hayat, London-based newspaper.

Vanunu, a former nuclear technician who was recently released after spending 18 years in jail for exposing Israel's nuclear program at Dimona to Britain's Sunday Times, has been barred from leaving the country, talking to the media or meeting with foreigners.

As per the interview published in newspaper's Arabic supplement al-Wassat on Sunday, Vanunu said according to "near-certain indications", Kennedy was assassinated due to "pressure he exerted on then head of government, David ben-Gurion, to shed light on Dimona's nuclear reactor".

"We do not know which irresponsible Israeli Prime Minister will take office and decide to use nuclear weapons in the struggle against neighbouring Arab countries," he is quoted to have said, adding "what has already been exposed about the weapons Israel is holding can destroy the region and kill millions."
This is the kind of brave truth-telling we can expect from this valued new contributor to the Canadian multicultural discourse. It should also be noted that Vanunu is barred from talking to foreign media, so it's quite doubtful whether this interview actually took place.

That said, I am not one of those who thinks Al-jazeera should be banned in Canada. Yes, it's Jihadist propaganda, but the solution is to shed light on it, not censor it.

Our education system at work 

From this post at Brock's site we see yet another product of Canada's education system and regulated media environment:
When she was listing off all the “human rights” that Stephen Harper were to remove from Canadians, her list was astounding: Same-sex marriage, immigration, and bilingualism. Which left me asking, where the hell did “immigration” and “bilingualism” rise to the level of being considered fundamental human rights? [...]

It’s very scary that our school system seems to have instilled within our young a much skewed version of what human rights and liberty are truly mean. It seems that if you’re not parading around waving a Liberal logo and espousing support for same-sex marriage, the right for immigrants to flow to the country unabated, and enforced bilingualism on the entire country, you’re somehow not on the side of human morality.
This is the depressing thing about this country. It appears the system may very well be producing imbeciles in sufficient quantities to sustain itself.

And the clincher:
“The government shouldn’t give you a business license if they can’t conduct business in both official languages.”
Well, I don't really know what to say, but we already live in such a regulated environment the government can pretty much find any excuse they want to destroy a business that finds itself in the government's disfavour. Witness CHOI-FM, or Ottawa Valley sawmills for evidence. Why not pile language requirements on top, indeed.

Monday, July 26, 2004

We get letters 

And the author helpfully left a URL that led me to this website by Joe Molnar. It's not really a blog, but with a picture like this of our new Minister of Defence, you just know you want to go read more.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

The right to not be uncomfortable 

Via Tim Blair, we find this amazing story:
A PERTH abortion clinic objected to plans for a childcare centre on a neighbouring property because the sight of children might upset its patients.

Marie Stopes International Australia, which operates the clinic in the eastern suburb of Midland, objected to the development of the childcare centre on an adjoining block.

In an objection lodged with the City of Swan, the clinic operators said the sight and sound of children playing in a neighbouring property might cause emotional strain for women considering terminating a pregnancy.
Well, yes, young women just might see the little kiddies next door at play and have second thoughts about their decision. That doesn't sound like such a tragedy to me.

Incompetent Conservatives 

If you want to know why it seems such a lonely battle trying to advance conservative ideas in Canada, look no further than the CRTC decision to close CHOI-FM. In a blatant abuse of regulatory power they silence a radio station that dares to be a nuissance and challenge the politically correct shiboleths of modern Canada. And what does the Conservative Party have to say about it?
Ottawa - Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada and Leader of the Opposition, Stephen Harper, raised concerns today about the decision by the Canadian Radio and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) not to renew the operating license of Quebec City radio station CHOI FM.

Mr. Harper said his office received numerous calls from concerned Quebeckers regarding the decision that he said, "appears to be without precedent."

His concerns echo those expressed yesterday by the Quebec Press Council, the Quebec Federation of Professional Journalists, and the Action démocratique du Québec.

The Conservative Party of Canada favours reforming the CRTC's mandate, putting more emphasis on broadcast registration, bandwidth marketing and international communications negotiations, while moving the body away from its more traditional involvement in broadcast regulation.
Oh, you're concerned.

A crowd of 50,000 gathers in Quebec City demonstrating for Liberté and where is the support from the Conservative Party? Nowhere that I could see. A quick glance at that crowd shows that is was made up of exactly the demographic that the Conservatives should be attracting. They were young, francophone, mostly male and have a libertarian outlook on life, or at least are sick of the statist drivel that has been shoved down there throats from the Quebec establishment, both Federal and Provincial. The ADQ has had considerable success recruiting these people into their movement with unabashed, unapologetic rejection of some of Quebec Inc's sacred cows. They are clearly conservative, though of the libertarian flavour rather than socially. The Conservative Party would do well to mimick this approach in their Quebec wing.

But rather than marching with this crowd and standing up for them with a full-throated defence of freedom of expression, condemning the very idea of meddlesome bureaucrats taking such draconian actions worthy of a banana republic, we get a pathetic press release mouthing some platitudes about concern. I guess the Conservatives are satisfied with staying in single digits in Quebec.

But this is just another example in a long trend. Yes, if you examine closely they say they would reform the CRTC. But they say these things quietly, if at all, and try to play down any suggestion that what they are offering would upset the comfortable, well-feathered nests the Liberals and hangers-on have made for themselves. Whether it's the CRTC, Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, or reform of the Health Care system their approach is the same. Minimize, apologize for any possible inconvenience it may cause to comfortably entrenched bureaucrats, sorry to cause any offence, but yes, we're sorta, kinda against these things, but not against them enough that anyone should get worked up about it. If they aren't prepared to defend their own policies it's no surprise the public won't give them an enthusiastic endorsement either.

Saturday, July 24, 2004

Heather can speak for herself 

Why do socialists always try to speak for others? No doubt Heather Mallick can speak authoritatively for herself, so when she says We're all whores, but some of us are more enthusiastic than others I'll take her word for it that she knows what she's talking about in her own circumstances. But others have a different set of values.

Friday, July 23, 2004

CHOI-FM aujourd'hui 

Well, I've been listening to this station this morning and I have to say the media have grotesquely mischaracterized it. Sure, it's a tad abrasive and they do swear, but calling it trash radio or referring to Jeff Fillion as a shock jock is a disservice to him. This morning they are revelling in the success of their demonstration yesterday, which drew a very large crowd of supporters in Quebec City (estimated up to be up to 50,000). But even here there's an indication of the political incorrectness they flirt with, remarking on the babes that showed up at their rally. One can see how a professionally outraged feminist would be offended, but no normal person would consider such comments inappropriate.

And they played some unflattering excerpts from their CRTC hearing that mocked the bureaucrats as nagging busybodies, which is awfully cheeky of them given their current state of affairs. But you can see the pattern - a little banter on current affairs including mocking the establishment elite, a little profanity and political incorrectness, some serious interviews and calls from listeners.

I encourage you to have a listen yourself and make up your own mind if this is the sort of station that should be subjected to such a draconian action worthy of an Arab autocracy. Have a listen here, if you can understand French.

Update: Brock goes on the attack with his thoughts on the topic.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

CHOI-FM, revisited 

The National Post has an excellent piece today on the silencing of CHOI-FM by Frederick Tetu:
But there is much more to Fillion's show than vulgarity and sensationalism. Notwithstanding his occasional trashy put-downs, it is no stretch to call it a legitimate public-affairs program. [...]

The reason his station has ruffled so many feathers in Quebec City is not because Fillion is racy -- but because he has dared to express ideas that Quebec's nationalists deem heretical.

Observers in the rest of Canada might have already wondered why Quebec's nationalist leaders haven't leapt to Fillion's defence.
Not living in Quebec City I can't say I'm very familiar with this station, but since the announcement I've listened in occasionally on the internet. It's not my taste, but I certainly never heard anything remotely offensive on the scale of a Howard Stern. And I certainly wondered why the Bloc and PQ have not been jumping on this outrageous federal intrusion in Quebec cultural affairs. Their approval should be a major warning to everyone, frankly. Have separatists infiltrated the CRTC?
Fillion's audience is made up of young francophones, the kind of voters who are expected to comprise the shock troops of separatism. Day in, day out, he encourages them to refuse the herd mentality of the statist, Quebec model. His ideology is libertarian. (Last winter, for instance, he was one of the few Quebecers who defended Don Cherry's right to say what he did about French hockey players.) And he believes the separatists' national project would add nothing to the rights, freedoms and prosperity we already enjoy. On the contrary, he believes the corporatism and protectionism underlying the nationalistic project threaten these rights. As Fillion sees it, separation would allow Quebec politicians to dramatically extend the interventionist politics that have sprouted since the revolution tranquille.
Omigod, this guy sounds like a kindred spirit. Whatever the motivation, the idea that the CRTC silenced a federalist with libertarian tendancies should be frightening to the rest of us.
He points to Ralph Klein's Alberta and Mike Harris's Ontario as the models that we should try to emulate in Quebec.

For many in the Quebec City region, it was refreshing to hear someone like Fillion countering the primal and inchoate anti-Americanism that came to the surface last year, someone to remind us of how vital economic ties with the United States are to a province that depends heavily on its exports south of the border.

In addition, Fillion is an unabashed supporter of Israel's right to protect itself against terrorist attacks. He has even decried the pro-Palestinian leanings of Quebecers as a hypocritical expression of anti-Semitism.

All this -- more than any comment about breasts or bombshells -- has been Fillion's real heresy.
Now I am really starting to get outraged. I had to say I couldn't understand how this station could be number one in the city if all it had was trash talk. It turns out that wasn't the draw at all, though it no doubt occasionally deliberately skewered some politically correct sacred cows, as I do here. We're talking about a libertarian-inclined current affairs program, exactly the sort of diversity on the air the CRTC should be promoting, not silencing. But of course that's the kind of diversity they can't tolerate.

Subversive Technology 

We may have the threat of subversive radio stations for which we should be grateful that the CRTC is bravely protecting us. But the latest threat to Saudi society is cell phone cameras:
Many women are refusing to attend wedding ceremonies, fearing other guests may use cell phone cameras, commonly sold on the Saudi black market, to take their pictures and distribute the images over the Internet. [...]

Um Abdul Rahman said, “My friend got divorced because her picture was circulated on e-mails. Her picture was taken inside a wedding hall in Jeddah. Her husband blamed her for the incident and divorced her.”

She asked if destroying families by separating couples was what these sick people wanted. Parents should not allow their kids to lay their hands on these camera phones, she added.
Yeah, just imagine if all your friends started seeing pictures of you at a wedding. That would be hard to deal with.

One of those multicultural things 

Like you, I've accumulated lots of junk in closets and basement corners over the years. But do any of you have a collection like this:
One SAM-7 rocket; two RPG rockets and a launcher; nine pieces of RDX plastic explosives; elements for homemade explosives including ammonium powder and nitrate; three high-explosive hand grenades; 11 other hand grenades; fuses and detonators.

In addition, 22 Kalashnikovs; 11 handguns; four rifles; more than 30,000 rounds of ammunition; cell phones and other communications equipment; prepaid calling cards; documents; video cameras; computers; and cash amounting to $96,080.
And, of course, the severed head of an infidel in the freezer. Just another multicultural lifestyle to be celebrated on Heritage Day, I suppose.

Those killer trees 

One would have to have a heart of stone not to laugh at the unfortunate demise of this tree-hugger:
TULSA - Blake Champlin, a Tulsa lawyer and environmental activist, died Monday at his home when a tree supporting a hammock fell and crushed him.
Kind of like the French, you never can count on those trees to show the appropriate gratitude.

(Via Mark Steyn)

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Another indignity for the Canadian Forces 

When I first heard the speculation that Bill Graham would be made Minister of National Defense I thought it was a joke. Now that this nightmare has come true it is still a joke, though one must have a dark sense of humour indeed to appreciate it.

It is a bit of a sad day anyway, as we could have had the spectacle of Stephen Harper swearing in his new defense minister and immediately dispatching his fleet of aircraft carriers to bomb the CBC and Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, if I recall the media interpretation of his election platform correctly. I think the sorties to take out the nation’s abortion clinics would be held off until approved by a free vote in parliament, but I admit admit my memory may be a little fuzzy on that part. Wishful thinking as that was, the happy sight of watching the CBC headquarters collapse into a pile of smoldering rubble will have to wait for another day. Today, we get Bill Graham as defense minister instead.

It is too bad, as outgoing defense minister David Pratt wasn’t an extreme idiotarian, at least as Liberals go. If the government has to be Liberal, David Pratt was probably the most competent minister we could have hoped for, but he lost his Ottawa area seat while Ontario elected the likes of Carolyn Parrish and Baghdad Beaumier.

So rather than restoring the Canadian Forces to something resembling a fighting force capable of defending the nation’s interests we will see the Liberal transformation accelerate. Soon we’ll have an army completely disarmed, staffed exclusively with women and homosexuals engaging in social outreach programs in third world countries, if they go abroad at all. I can’t think of a worse time to be a Canadian soldier.

Monday, July 19, 2004

The demise of multicult dogma 

The demise of multiculturalism as official dogma seems to be happening more quickly in Europe than over here. Here's another article on it by Theodore Dalrymple. I hope this is one trend from Europe we will import:
Another Blairite who once uncritically espoused multicultural pieties has recently undergone a conversion: Commission for Racial Equality chairman Trevor Phillips. In an interview with the London Times, Phillips, a black born in Guyana, argued that England should abandon the whole concept of multiculturalism, since it was doing more harm than good. Officials should even stop using the word itself, he added.
Fascinating article, read the whole thing.

Virtually shoulder to shoulder  

Ian Scott calls for us to support the Lanark Landowners' Association in their attempt to fight back against government harassment of their properties. I'd seen these signs
while driving through the area before and meant to write about them for some time, but now Ian's beaten me to it.

I also earlier wrote about the harassment of sawmill operators in the Ottawa Valley. These people deserve our attention and support.

Try branding them Tasty Toxics 

This is an utterly meaningless study, noteworthy mostly because this is the sort of junk science scaremongering the organic food industry bases its marketing on. This time they're being hoisted on their own petard:
Organic baby food 'worst for toxins'
ORGANIC baby foods carry higher toxin levels than conventional products, according to a damning new report by the Food Standards Agency.

While many parents are prepared to pay a premium of up to an extra 20p, or 30%, for a jar of organic food, the survey found that three of the top four products with the highest levels of toxins were organic, while none of the 10 baby foods with the lowest toxin levels had the organic label.

Consumers’ groups last night demanded clearer information on food to allow shoppers to make the best choices, while organic producers called for more research to allow them to avoid contaminated ingredients.

The food watchdog bought 124 samples of different brands of baby food. They were then tested for PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) and dioxins, which are man-made pollutants present in the environment as a result of industrial processes.
Hey, if you're going to smear salmon fish farmers with this type of junk science don't complain when it hits organic farmers, too.

Suffice to say that comparing trace levels of chemicals that vary from insignificant to really, really insignificant is not very meaningful. Bon appetit.

Sunday, July 18, 2004

How I became a Jew and American  

I'm neither a Jew nor an American, but after reading this at the Last Amazon I think I would happily accept honourary membership as both:
About a year after the attack I was leaving my building Saturday afternoon while my neighbor's family was returning from the local mosque. The family is originally from Somali and had come to Canada as refugees. Only the children spoke English. The children were discussing how evil Jews were in English. I was deeply offended by their hatred and announced that I was a Jew and let's talk about their issues to my face.
Read the whole thing.

Perhaps we should all be shopping at Jewcy now.

Friday, July 16, 2004

Pull the plug on the CRTC 

First of all, if you want to listen to CHOI-FM before the CRTC pulls the plug on them and you're not in Quebec City point your browser here.

And if you want to get a sample of the newly approved Al-Jazeera or a selection of some of the not approved international stations you can subscribe at JumpTV totally free of any seven second delay or CanCon nonsense. You might even hear some jokes about boobs that the CRTC considers thoroughly ungood. Of course high speed internet is probably required to get a decent quality delivery, but technology is improving at such a rate you'll soon be able to watch it on your HDTV BlackBerry.

All that is to say that the CRTC is being overtaken by technology anyway, so we might as well get it out of the content regulation business. Frankly, what business is it of theirs whether I pull Al-Jazeera through my cable on an IP connection or down the same cable as a video service? None whatsoever, of course. Even less should they be attempting to regulate what a satellite broadcasts that isn't hovering over Canada anyway, it's hovering somewhere over the equator.

Norman Spector says those of us who think this way should read section 3 of the Broadcasting Act. Okay, done, and I am even more convinced the CRTC should limit itself to the purely technical aspects of regulating spectrum, much the way they regulate cell phones, microwave transmissions and other aspects of the wireless telecom business. As far as I am concerned once a company has laid a cable or procured rights to a channel it should be entirely their business what they choose to broadcast on it. If they think it's a good idea to broadcast Al-Jazeera in morning and Fox in the afternoons it's their channel, their business. Get the CRTC out of it.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Rending the social fabric 

The Liberals just barely survived an election campaign by engaging in hysterical ranting about the threat the Conservatives would be to our cherished Freedoms. Then they and their political hack friends in the CRTC returned to Ottawa and shut down a radio station.

But then in their judgment Charter freedoms aren’t really the point when it comes to defending the social fabric of the nation. And these outspoken chaps at CHOI made some fabric-rending remarks:
:The Commission considers that such remarks do not safeguard, enrich or strengthen the social fabric of Canada, nor do they reflect the status and aspirations of women.
And how do we know that?

Well, the CRTC helpfully informs us that the remarks in question were regarding the lovely
La vedette Sophie Chiasson of TVA fame. They also demonstrate just how unacceptable making these remarks in public is by transcribing and translating them for a national audience on their website, rather than allowing them to dissipate in the ether in Quebec City:
There are multiple references to the size of her breasts; [translation] "her incredible set of boobs" and suggested that "the size of the brain is not directly proportional to the size of the bra" and that, "in her case, it might actually be inversely proportional." The participants even wondered about the texture of the complainant’s breasts and whether anyone has asked the gropers about them, and whether they "[translation] defied gravity." […]They also said that the complainant "[translation] had been around" and that " it happens behind the scenes" and made a number of remarks which suggested that she used personal relationships and even sex to land contracts as a television host.
Well, I wouldn’t want to rend the social fabric by further dwelling on Sophie’s incredible set of boobs, though I think the radio station should explore the idea of truth as a defense.

Social Development Minister Liza Frulla thinks this a good time to discuss just how far freedom of expression on the public airwaves should be allowed to go. Well, discussing what Sophie did to get her job is admittedly in poor taste, but then Liza does seem to be trying to show her boss a little cleavage

in this photo, though Paul is trying hard not to look. Judging by the look on his face perhaps Liza is doing something with her left hand under the table that we wouldn’t want anyone talking about on the radio waves.

I certainly don’t condone radio announcers speculating about the texture Sophie’s breasts on the air, either. But Liza does appear to be getting awfully cozy with this elderly gentleman, not that I think CHOI should ask him his opinion on the topic on the air.

As for freedom of expression, we certainly know Liza’s cabinet colleague Jean Augustine’s opinion on that. It may be true, as the folks at CHOI suggest, that the lovely Sophie has gravity-defying talents but gravity certainly weighs in on Jean’s burdensome bulk (pictured below, right),
who couldn’t win a beauty contest with Michael Moore as the only opponent. For her sake, one could hope the musings on CHOI about beauty and brains being inversely correlated would have some merit, but, alas, she displays a total lack of intellect and a repulsively authoritarian character with statements like this:
The government will not tolerate statements that create dissonance in our society and disrespect for others.
With neither brains nor beauty going for her she must be personally grateful indeed for the lengths the Liberals will go to pander to ethnics, not that I think this would be a good topic for CHOI to discuss in depth as that would be divisive, and we know how much tolerance Jean has for that. So maybe they should just stick to her similarity with Michael Moore in both looks and temperament.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Bastille Day 

I hate to show disrespect for a national holiday, even for France. But really, they continue to call it Bastille day, and celebrate it in a very militaristic style, though their military has never had much success defending the Republic. It's somehow appropriate that this year they included the British military, which has certainly done more for liberty in the French Republic than the French ever have.

I pretty much agree with Chris Taylor on this:
Today, the French people celebrate the destruction of the ancien régime and the liberation of seven prisoners (four forgers, two lunatics, and a dangerous sexual offender) from the Bastille. This rebellion set off a chain of events that led to the Jacobin Reign of Terror by a lawyer, Maximilien Robespierre, and the execution of 50,000 French citizens for dubious offenses. In the 21st century, that noble enterprise of French serfdom is commemorated by a large monument and a subway stop.

Idiot du jour - Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley 

Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley thinks the move to charge Michael Moore is a frivolous abuse of the Elections Canada process. No, you frigging idiot, it's a demonstration of the idiocy of the stupid law. You friggin' Lieberals try to use the law to silence the National Citizen's Coalition and other opponents but think the law doesn't apply to Lieberal supporters?

Quoth idiot extraordinaire Mike Bradley:
While we do not have equality with the value of our dollar with the United States, we certainly have equality with the right wing and their stupidity. It was always amazing to me that a group of individuals who promoted and believed in free trade do not believe in the freedom of ideas and political opinion.
Now I have always known that the Liberals only ever intended to use the law to silence conservative voices. But it is Conservatives who have consistently opposed the idiotic law, and the National Citizen's Coalition challenged it in court. You idiotic Liberals need to enforce the law or repeal it. Put Moore in jail and then repeal the law would be my choice.

Bob at Let it Bleed takes on the idiot as well.

Ethnic crime gangs 

Here's a very disturbing article by a retired cop in Australia about the hand-off treatment Australian cops are required to give ethnic crime gangs:
In hundreds upon hundreds of incidents police have backed down to Middle Eastern thugs and taken no action and allowed incidents to go unpunished. Again I stress the unbelievable influence that local politicians and religious leaders played in covering up the real state of play in the south-west.
Are there any Canadian cops out there with similar stories in Toronto, Montreal or Vancouver? Anonymity can be assured.

Crushing dissent by the CRTC 

The good folks at CHOI-FM, a radio station in Quebec City, have had their licence yanked by the CRTC for making too many politically incorrect blurtcrimes.

You might recall Jean Augustine said:
The government will not tolerate statements that create dissonance in our society and disrespect for others.
In case anyone thought this was a parody the CRTC is demonstrating that this was, in fact, an official statement of government policy. The announcers on CHOI-FM certainly occasionally show disrespect for others, and we certainly can't have that in our Dominion.

Don Cherry got an official investigation for saying something about visors and French guys. These guys go quite a bit further than that, talking about the correlation of boobs and brains, and making derogatory comments about foreign students from Africa.

So, for all those Canadians all worked up about censorship and crushing dissent in Ashcroft's America, is anyone going to come to the defence of these guys? This is a very popular radio station in Quebec City that is not just getting some fines or orders, it's being shut down, just like in a banana republic. And for what? Some poor taste humour.

Update: Read more on this at Radioweissblog.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

The Doctor is in 

And he lets loose with lots of unapproved badthink on Canada's socialist health care. The Party will not be pleased, I'm sure:
I admit to being pleasantly surprised that the CMA is even willing to engage this far with the actual rights of an actual patient. My cynicism about the CMA knows few bounds, and I would not have been at all shocked were the CMA to have defended the System instead of the Patient.

You may agree, however, that my cynicism is grounded in reality. For the CMA not only defends the right of a patient to have timely access to health care, but also throws in an unnecessary defense of the Monopoly Socialist Medicare System as it currently stands. As it says in the very first sentence of its submission,
1. The Canadian Medical Association (“CMA”) and the Canadian Orthopaedic Association (“COA”) support the existing single payer (publicly funded) model of health care delivery [...]
Forgive me for thinking that this is out of place in a discussion of the constitutionality of restricting the access of Canadians to medical services. Either the government is "right" to forbid Canadians from getting the health care they need, or the government is wrong to do so. (No prize for guessing where I stand... I'll just say that Canada's current model of Gunpoint Monopoly is favoured only by our fellow travellers Cuba and North Korea.)
Read the whole thing. Sure, you'll be aiding and abetting a doubleplusungood thoughtcrime and liable to get a visit from the Liberal Party enforcement wing (otherwise known as the RCMP). But go ahead anyway, it's worth it.

The nanny state to the rescue 

I'm not sure this guy really needs any more persuasion, but I guess they want to deter other men from doing the same thing to themselves:
A British man who accidentally shot himself in the testicles after drinking 15 pints of beer was jailed for five years on Tuesday for possessing an illegal firearm, a court spokesman said.
David Walker, 28, was arguing with a friend at a pub in South Yorkshire, northern England, when he went home to get his sawed-off shotgun, which he jammed into his trousers.

But as he walked back to the pub, the gun went off, blasting pellets into his testicles. Doctors later removed what remained of his testicles during emergency surgery.

Walker admitted possessing a prohibited weapon at a hearing in June at the court in Sheffield.
I wonder if the lawyer tried the argument that he has suffered enough.

Brock on the defence 

Mike Brock does a fine job in an interview with a lefty. Check it out.

Monday, July 12, 2004

Anti-Americanism, an American responds 

I posted on the Shotgun a link to a rant by Bill O'Reilly taking note of the anti-Americanism in Canada. It generated this excellent reponse by regular Shotgun commenter Greg in Dallas:
From the many posts on the anti-American situation, it appears that we are largely in agreement that anti-Americanism is being discovered in the US and that American citizens are beginning to generate hostility about it.

So I have a question for those Canadian and American citizens of mature sensibility. Is there any way we can avert this train wreck? Is there something we can do to keep the ill feelings directed at each other from tipping over the "critical mass" point?
One thing that would probably help Canada enormously is the matter Bill O'Reilly brings up. Were Fox News with its balanced point of view to have an outlet in Canada, many Canadians might be exposed to a different way of looking at things, perhaps for the first time. Likewise, in the States, talk radio has essentially become the voice of the conservative side of the spectrum. In the beginnings of its exposure, of course we got all the usual irrational perjoratives. However, over time, our views have become normal and commonplace. Before national media exposure to conservative ideas, the US was well on its way to the problems being suffered by Canadians. Now the situation is that even if, God forbid, we lost the election, conservatism at the grassroots level is entrenched and still very much on the march.

So I can't help but think that if similar possibilites were available in Canada, good things might happen.
Americans used to just shrug off the abuse directed at them from their allies, meaning countries like Canada, Germany and France suffered no consequences. I say again I really think those days are coming to an end. After 9/11 they started going through a re-evaluation of which allies are worthwhile and which contribute nothing but abuse.

Our media is doing us a tremendous disservice broadcasting blatant anti-Americanism that will eventually generate hostility in return. I think Greg has an excellent point on the effect talk radio and Fox News had in the States. I doubt the CRTC will relax its subtle coercion of the broadcast media here anytime soon, so our main hope is that they get marginalized by advancing broadcast technology.

Charging Moore 

Pieter has a post up at Peaktalk about charging Michael Moore for meddling in the Canadian election:
Good for him and he has launched a website to support the effort to charge Moore, the penalty being 6 months in jail or a $2,000 fine. While it’s not likely that Moore would wind up in a Canadian jail, which would be the ultimate irony in this case, it’s important to note that someone at least bothers to take on Moore and is able to actually use some legislation to make that a worthwhile endeavor.
Personally, I think the best outcome for this would be to have the absurd law struck down. It is yet another of the patronizing, condescending view that the average Canadian citizen is so fragile he has to be protected from manipulation by being exposed to others' opinions. This is the same logic that created our gag laws, which should also be abolished.

I rather hope he does get charged and that he launches a Charter challenge against the law. Then we'd see the courts twist themselves into pretzels to defend the freedom of expression of a foreigner, while silencing domestic groups like the National Citizen's Coalition. Difficult, yes. But I'm sure our Supreme Court would be up to the challenge.

Mr. Khadr's passport 

According to this story in the Globe Foreign Minister Bill Graham personally refused to grant Mr. Khadr a passport:
“The decision to refuse Abdurahman Khadr a passport was made by the Minister of Foreign Affairs in his exercise of the Crown prerogative, on the basis of national security concerns,” Peter Southey, a Justice Department lawyer, wrote to Mr. Ruby on July 2.
Abdurahman Khadr claims to have participated both in Al Qaeda training camps and ot have cooperated with the CIA in covert counter-terrorism activities. I wonder which one of those activities has drawn the ire of the Liberal government?

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Iraqi Army takes the initiative 

After some initial reports of poor performance by the new Iraqi security services this post at Iraqthemodel sounds very promising:
In an operation to attack dens of terrorism in Baghdad, a platoon of the Iraqi National Guard has carried out a successful operation Wednesday against groups of Saddam's remnants and a number of Al- Zarqawi followers who were gathered in four buildings in the said street. That operation comes as a practical indication to transfer the initiative of the attack to the hand of the National Guard." An accurate intelligence information reported a group of Saddam's men and Al- Zarqawi followers were crowded in four buildings in Haifa street " Mr. Hazim Sh'lan the minister of defense elaborated, adding that the operation started in installing search points in front of these buildings for instigating the hostile elements who thought they could control the battalion of the national guard.
Read the whole thing. It sounds like Iraqi forces are starting to take over the fight from the coalition, a very positive sign.

Friday, July 09, 2004

The Health Care debate I wish we had 

If you are depressed at the empty quality of debate on health care in Canada, check out this presentation on the reforms currently being implemented by Britain’s Labour Party. Britain has a National Health Service (NHS) that is quite similar to our centrally planned one, except they have a parallel private system people can pay for if they wish. They are implementing dramatic reforms that will eventually give patients a choice of health care providers paid through the public system. If waiting times are too long or, eventually, for any reason at all a patient chooses to opt for care at an alternative provider they can do so at no cost. The private provider need only charge the same rates as the NHS.

The objective is to drive changing behaviour, more innovation, increased supply to alleviate the waiting lists and a personalized service centred on patients’ needs. Empowering patient choice is intended to be used as a lever on the public bureaucracy to drive quality, responsiveness and encourage innovation.

Have a look through that presentation and compare that to the vacuous debate we just went through.

Liberals – More $$$ reduced waiting times and HARPER WILL RUIN EVERYTHING
Harper – Will not.

Totally empty rhetoric devoid of any content of actual policy that would deliver what they’re promising.

And note that this is the Labour party implementing this vision. This is the legacy of Thatcher in Britain, where even the opposition understands the unresponsiveness of public monopolies. Imagine if the Conservatives boldly outlined something like this rather than downplaying, apologizing and denying that they’ll RUIN EVERYTHING.

Crushing dissent in Norway 

Shocking police crackdown on innocent environmentalists in Norway:
"We'd rather go to jail than accept a fine," claimed Tommy Holm Ellingsen, who had sex with partner Leona Johansson before an audience of thousands at the Quart Festival in Kristiansand on Tuesday. (snip)

Ellingsen claims the couple performed the surprise sex stunt during a set by the controversial band The Cumshots "actually to draw attention to the rain forests, which are in the process of disappearing."
Janet Jackson, we hardly knew ye.

And in other news in Norway, a modern artist is at work:
Norway's largest annual music festival has once again managed to stir controversy. This year it revolves around a so-called see-through "sex tent" erected on festival grounds as part of an alleged art project.

The idea is for artist Shu-Lea Cheang to film couples who volunteer to have sex in the tent. Organizers of the Quart Festival in Kristiansand on Norway's south coast claim the project aims to focus public attention on the public sector's AIDS policies.

Even worse than milquetoasts 

Ever since Ken Whyte and Mark Steyn left the National Post I always thought the paper had been seized by a bunch of milquetoasts. But it turns out it's actually worse than that. Former Quebec Premier Robert Bourassa never really lived down being dismissed as a mangeur d'hot dog but now it turns out the editorial board of the Post sip Strawberry and Cream Frappucinos. Gads.

Over at the Shotgun we barbeque endangered species while the kiddies are kept entertained at the rifle range. And to think I was going to invite this bunch Strawberry Frappucino drinkers over to our next barbeque.

I know nothing 

But googling the name "Lawrence Metherel" turns up the most interesting articles.

I guess the media were too busy interogating Conservate MPs with "Have you now or have you ever had Christian sympathies" type questions.

Hope springs eternal 

Chris Taylor has some pictures and commentary on the demonstration for democracy in Iran. I certainly share his sympathy, but this is certainly an example of holding out hope in spite of all contrary evidence:
Iran has lived with their mullocratic nightmare for twenty-five long years. Attending a rally like this is heartbreaking. You can sense the frustration -- the world's attention is focused squarely on Iraq, but no one can spare the time of day for Iranians next door, being tortured by their own government. It's impossible to see all of these people, who have been waiting a quarter-century, and say that their nation's suffering is somehow unworthy of our blood, treasure, and time.

I hope our government and our people are brave and resolute enough to play a vital role in their liberation. May God protect Iran and Iranians.
There are certainly a handful of people in this country who may be resolute enough, but you can't seriously entertain any idea that the Liberals would have any association whatsoever with the endeavour. Chretien is there negotiating oil deals for PetroKazakhstan with these criminals. They demonstrate how enlightened they are by rubbing shoulders with these thugs and torturers in United Nations agencies while discussing how uncivilized those Americans are and how they can be brought to heel.

The Monger rants 

The Monger certainly knows how to rant. On a post about the Conservatives "moving to the center" he says:
I can whinge and whine and raise amendments at policy conferences of the Get A Life Club, or I can try to bring my g**d*** country back from the freakin' brink! Do you people get it? It's f***ing illegal to buy medical care in this stupid country. My grandmother is f***ing crippled from her arthritis, and she's f***ing waiting for a g**d*** operation, because socialist Medicare doesn't work. Are the Liberals going to fix this? Ever? Ever?? Not on your g**d*** life.
Now that's a Grade "A" premium cut federally inspected rant.

However. "Moving to the center" in Canada means swearing on the bible that if the Conservatives were to ever get elected they would promise to leave the entire Trudeaupian apparatus intact, and merely attempt to administer it more efficiently. Recall, if you are old enough, Mulroney having to swear to treat Canada's social welfare apparatus as a "sacred trust not to be tampered with" (and Google "mulroney sacred trust" if you're too young to remember). Today's analogy would require Harper to swear allegiance to 100% socialist Medicare, the CRTC and CBC, regional development programs, CanCon subsidies, judge-made law, publicly funded abortion on demand right up to the ninth month, funding of cities and promise to continue to the social ostracism of every Western Christian. When the media talk about the "center", that's about what they mean. Agree to administer the Liberal platform for a few years while the electorate gives the Liberals a time-out. Or you can advocate some changes that will have the CanCon establishment quaking in their boots and condemning you as beyond the fringe, no matter how mild the changes are.

I would also note that you can effect changes from the opposition benches. Preston Manning was condemned as a right wing lunatic threat to the very social fabric of the nation when he advocated balanced budgets and even debt reduction, as well as democratic reforms. He never won an election but now even the NDP promises balanced budgets and we had the bizarre experience of watching the Liberals attack the Conservatives as fiscally irresponsible, threatening a return to deficits. And now Paul Martin is champion of the democratic deficit, though I don't consider him to be serious.

So if you want health care reform, advocate health care reform. You might get elected and get a chance to implement it, or the Liberals will implement it then run attacks ads that the Conservatives will return us to the dreaded waiting lists of old. If they implement the Conservative platform so be it, I say, but at least advocate what we want.

Update: The Monger responds. And points out my oversight in omitting him from the Blogroll. Ok, fixed.

Update encore: Occam's Carbuncle comments, too. I guess the only point I would make is that we had two majority Conservative governments trying to remain centrist where we got high taxes made higher and ballooning deficits even larger. Yeah, they implemented a couple of things more or less conservative on the way. Then the Reform Party took unambiguous policy stands on those issues and miraculously they got addressed, though the Liberals actually campaigned hard against them. The Liberals certainly don't implement opposition policies because they like them or have been persuaded by the arguments. They look to the next election and try to triangulate policies to minimize the fields on which the opposition can attack them. Thus, with the Reform Party taking bold stands on clear issues the Liberals did their best to blunt them by pre-emptively implementing some of the main planks. It doesn't bother them to implement things they condemned in the prior election if it will lessen the potention vulnerability in the next.

And Conservatives parties with clear messages are usually the ones with the most electoral success and lasting influence, too. Witness Thatcher, Reagan, and Mike Harris versus their successors. They didn't run to the center at the first setback, they persevered through strenuous opposition and their accomplishments were only admired later.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Former Ballet dancers for freedom 

Not sure why, but I had never discovered The Last Amazon before. Always happy to welcome former ballet dancers on the side of freedom to the Blogroll.

It's a little late, but for a sample of her fine writing, check out Election day cometh:
The next four years will be perilous times for all of us. The Liberals just don't get that. The world changed on September 11, 2001. The Liberals are still living on the September 10, 2001 mentality. Hide your head in the sand, don't ask, don't tell, and maybe all will be better on the morrow. In response to the threat of the Islamofascists they suggest that the Americans should be a little less arrogrant.

A fine piece of Ostalgie 

In Germany there's a peculiar nostaglia for certain aspects of life in the communist east, known in German as Ostalgie. I've never really known what to make of it, other than an understandable yearning for the familiar trappings of youth. But there's a genuine celebration of communist kitsch in some circles. I suppose that's understandable enough if that was actually part of your youth as it was in East Germany, but check out this astounding article by Matthew Parris in the Spectator, of all places:
It came upon me powerfully, momentarily and quite unexpectedly. Perhaps a couple of vodkas at a bar by the railway station in St Petersburg were to blame. But all at once I realised that if I were a 50-something Russian living in the former Soviet Union today, I would be a communist. [...]

In a short, spine-tingling moment I understood something to which my mind had been closed all my adult political life: the thrill of the communist ideal. [...]

Here is something I never expected to write. As the music swelled and died, I felt the force, I understood the nobility of socialism. I felt its claims to moral superiority over other more selfish, more pessimistic systems of economics and government. I saw the appeal of socialist theory to what is best, most virtuous and most optimistic in human nature.
Good Lord.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Hard to sympathize 

Check out this article (found via Right On!) talking about the trauma "health care" professionals experience during failed late term abortions:
"In case law a child is considered to be alive if after its birth it could breathe and sustain life through the use of its own lungs, obviously with adequate ventilation and life support.

"If the child is alive then surely it has rights," she said.

The student, from Imperial College London, said that a baby born alive after an abortion was in some ways similar to a premature baby.

She cited the case of a baby who lived unsustained by life support for three days.

"Anyone who has been near a screaming baby or heard a baby gasp for breath must realise this must have been traumatic for the healthcare professionals involved - that is to find themselves having to ignore this for three days," she said.
Having to ignore a screaming baby for three days? Perhaps it would have been less traumatic to save the baby rather than waiting for it to die? What kind of "health care professionals" ignore a dying baby for three days?

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Idiot du jour - Gwynne Dyer 

Gwynne Dyer, idiot du jour, pens an article of astounding stupidity in the Star today titled "It's not always about you":
New York state governor George Pataki dedicated the building that is to replace them with the rhetoric that is standard in the United States on such occasions: "Let this great Freedom Tower show the world that what our enemies sought to destroy — our democracy, our freedom, our way of life — stands taller than ever."

But 9/11 wasn't really about any of that.
Enlighten us, O great one, what was it about? But first he has to sneer and ridicule a little:
Imagine the scene: It's 1999, and a group of wild-eyed Islamist fanatics are pacing a cave in Afghanistan planning 9/11.

"We must destroy American democracy," says one. "An America run by a dictator would be a much better place."

"Yes," says the second, "and we must also curtail their freedom. Americans have too many television channels, too many breakfast cereals, and far too many kinds of makeup to choose from."

A third chimes in: "While we're at it, let's destroy their whole way of life. I've always hated American football, Oprah Winfrey sucks, and I can't stand Coca-Cola."

No? This scene doesn't ring true? Then why does almost all public discussion in the U.S. about the goals of the Islamist terrorists assume that they are driven by hatred for the domestic political and social arrangements of Americans?
Just stepping way out on a limb here, but maybe they've read the Al Qaeda press release why we fight America:
America is the head of heresy in our modern world, and it leads an infidel democratic regime that is based upon separation of religion and state and on ruling the people by the people via legislating laws that contradict the way of Allah and permit what Allah has prohibited. This compels the other countries to act in accordance with the same laws in the same ways… and punishes any country [that rebels against these laws] by besieging it, and then by boycotting it. By so doing, [America] seeks to impose on the world a religion that is not Allah's…"

America, with the collaboration of the Jews, is the leader of corruption and the breakdown [of values], whether moral, ideological, political, or economic corruption. It disseminates abomination and licentiousness among the people via the cheap media and the vile curricula.

America is the reason for all oppression, injustice, licentiousness, or suppression that is the Muslims' lot. It stands behind all the disasters that were caused and are still being caused to the Muslims; it is immersed in the blood of Muslims and cannot hide this.
Straight from the horse's mouth, Gwynne. They hate America because it is the head of heresy in our modern world, and it leads an infidel democratic regime that is based upon separation of religion and state. Those barbaric infidels have the gall to legislate laws that contradict the way of Allah and permit what Allah has prohibited. That is, they have the gall to exercise their own freedom rather than submit to the law of Allah.

But evidently Gwynne knows them better than they can explain themselves.
So once more, with feeling: the 9/11 attacks were not aimed at American values, which are of no interest to the Islamists one way or another.
Don't believe me or those simpleton infidel Americans, Gwynne. If you want to know why Islamists hate and attack America, read their press release.

Monday, July 05, 2004

Where capitalism meets socialism 

What is the result when capitalism's ability to produce people with cars meets socialism's constrained ability to provide traffic capacity on the road?

Traffic jam. Read Jay Jardine for more.

Stop the blame game 

Following up on the post by Spin Killer I think it's time for conservatives to stop the blame game. Inherent in this game is the implication that the Conservatives were on the verge of victory when some participants blew it for them.

There's just a small problem with this narrative. It isn't true. The so-cons didn't blow the lead. A couple of misstatements by some candidates didn't blow the lead. No one blew the lead. It turns out it the lead never existed. It was a mirage.

Yes, we all saw polls that showed the Conservatives apparently in the lead two weeks into the campaign, but those polls suffered from the same defect the later ones had. They failed to anticipate that the undecideds were going to break massively for the Liberals.

Had conservatives never moved the goalposts in the middle of the campaign and set the standard for success so high based on faulty poll numbers we wouldn't be so disappointed with the results. So get over it. The lead was never really there.

Instead, look back to the objectives the party had set just a few months ago. Breakthrough in Ontario - check. Finally end the neverending Liberal majority - check. Restore competitive elections in Canada - check.

Yes, there's work to do, especially in building support in Quebec. But now is no time to wallow in undignified recriminations and scapegoating when in reality there are many successes to celebrate and build upon.

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