Tuesday 31 August 2010

Just when you thought they couldn't sink any lower ...

Blob Blogging Wingnut defends DoDo the Dumbth.

From the comments at Dr Dawg:
"She didn't say all Jews were money loving Jews. She said that one was. There are money-loving Jews in the world, like there are alcoholic Irish Catholics, whiny French Canadians, etc etc. She doesn't think ALL Jews are money-loving Jews. She's saying some Jews are sell-outs to their own people. That's hardly antisemitism. It sounds like she's very concerned about the fate of the Jews."
Actually, if one ventures onto Blogging ReformaTory (or as Balbulican aptly names them "stool samples with keyboards") terrain and reads DoDo's post, all is illuminated.

It's purportedly about greed - however neither Berlusconi nor Blair are labeled "a money-loving Catholic who has sold his soul".
And then of course, there's the shrieeeking, invective-laced rant about the Italian bimbos:

"Women really make the worst dhimmis possible."
That is the reverse of a profoundly entrenched stereotypical obsession/fear that nubile Aryan women will be recruited for Ay-rab harems or the white slave trade. The gynophobia on display is classic; if women are not being forced to convert to Islam, then they must be doing it for the munnee.

Does DoDo know anything about the Marranos, Sephardim women and men who converted to catholicism in order to survive while the Inquisition ran roughshod through Spain?

Likely not; her alleged concern for the fate of the Jews doesn't seem to encompass much - it's all shrieeek and mishegas.

Sunday 29 August 2010

'Whitestock' Attendance

How many people turned out for Glen Beck's 'Whitestock' yesterday? (Go to the link for further links.)
So what was the attendence like? CBS says the rally drew 87,000, (with a stated margin of error of 9,000 either way). Attendees were tweeting 300,000, which was - coincidentally? - the number on the rally permit. Glenn Beck claimed 450,000, which will, no doubt, quickly become “up to half a million”, followed by “some say close to a million people." ...Oops! It’s already happened! The NY Times reports that “event organizers put the number of attendees at 500,000." And from the Washington Post we get this nugget of nuttiness, straight from the mouth of the Queen of Crazy herself:
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), speaking soon after the Beck rally at her own impromptu event nearby, said: "We're not going to let anyone get away with saying there were less than a million here today.”

More fun with numbers.

Vienna Declaration in Toronto

And now for something completely different. Good and hopeful news.
Toronto has become the first city in the world – and the first government in North America – to formally endorse a declaration that advocates harm reduction over the war on drugs.

The Vienna Declaration, which slams the criminalization of illicit drugs as a major factor fuelling HIV infection rates, came to the fore during this year's AIDS conference. Its authors called on policy-makers around the world to refocus their approaches to illegal drugs and HIV-AIDS prevention – especially in light of new statistics that show HIV infection rates have climbed back to 1982 levels, largely thanks to infection in injection-drug users.

So, how will that sort with the ReformaTories' Stupid on Crime crusade?
Oooo, big surprise.
Federal Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq has said the Canadian government has no intention of endorsing the declaration, which takes aim at the Conservatives’ tough stand on drug use.

The motion passed council by a vote of 33 to 7. Guess who was among the seven troglodytes?

Toronto already has a successful Toronto Drug Treatment Court. Looky this from the Public Safety website:
The reduction in substance abuse and criminal activity among drug dependent offenders of the Toronto Drug Treatment Court can be characterized as promising, given the limitations of the evaluation, such as the small number of graduates, different response rates among groups, and the decrease in program's participation over time.
The evaluation of the TDTC adds to the growing body of research on specialized courts, and in particular, on collaborative justice and community responses to substance abuse by offenders in the criminal justice system.

Sounds pretty progressive. Does Vic Toews know about this?

Saturday 28 August 2010

Canadian Teabaggers

Wow. The Boston Globe takes note of the census kerfuffle.

Oh. Wait. Their census kerfuffle.
The Republican National Committee’s new attack on the US Census is so nakedly transparent that you almost want to avert your eyes.

The charge is being led by Teabaggers, you know, those intellectual giants who believe that Barack Obama is Muslim and not US-born.

Back here at home, not surprisingly, Canadian marketers are opposed to making the long-form census voluntary.

But somewhat surprisingly, the pres of the Canadian Marketing Association states that the census is less intrusive than other methods of information gathering -- and he'd know about other methods, wouldn't he?
Also, in an open letter written to Minister Clement, whose department is responsible for Statistics Canada, CMA president and ceo John Gustavson pointed out that “With respect to the suggestion that the long form is intrusive, this information enables marketers to reach consumers more effectively and reduce considerably the amount of communication an individual receives.”

“I would therefore respectfully suggest that the long form census does, in fact, limit intrusion into individuals' lives by reducing irrelevant marketing and market surveys that would otherwise be sent to consumers,” said Gustavson.

The article also quotes Jan Kestle of Environics, who notes the damage poor data does to business competitiveness.
“It is ironic that, in these challenging economic times, a decision that is ostensibly being made for the good of Canadians may very well have a severe impact on the competitiveness of Canadian businesses,” Kestle added. “Consumer marketers have invested significant resources during the past 15 years to tailor marketing to smaller and smaller segments; one-to-one marketing is on everyone’s agenda. Consumers expect products and services to be tailored to their needs. This decision will make it harder for businesses to meet the needs of the increasingly complex and discriminating consumer marketplace.”

So, when you're arguing with friends and co-workers or on-line strangers who want to scrap the long-form census, these are a couple of more arrows to your quiver.

Or you could just call them ignorant Canadian Teabaggers.

I think I'm going with the latter from now on.

To wit: Former BC deputy health minister Lawrie McFarlane: The census is torture.
“It's almost like the argument for water boarding: if you water board enough people, they will tell you something,” Mr. McFarlane said.

This is the best the ReformaTories could come up with?

BONUS: (same Globe link) Some Calgary talkshow host named Dave Rutherford was confused:
"I agree with the democratic process in this country ... and because I participate in democracy, I am here,” he said. “But other than that, I don’t know why I am here.”


Thursday 26 August 2010

His 'Just Watch Me' Moment?

This is the stuff that really really gets up Canadians' collective nose.

So up there on his annual northern photo op, King Stevie the Peevie surprises everyone, including his security detail, by hopping on a 4-wheel drive buggy and haring off at high speed onto the runway.
The rogue PM eventually returned to the aircraft where he was surrounded by reporters and photographers, one of whom wondered whether he had a licence to operate the vehicle — especially on restricted space such as an air strip?

“I think I make the rules,” the PM quipped.

Not for much longer, as more and more Canadians slowly wake to his mindless, asinine arrogance.

Post far and wide.

And go to the link to see the fat arse on the buggy. And read the comments.

ADDED: More hilarious comments here. We Canucks are funny.

Another Day, Another Desperate Spin

So, the Liberals have found some spare vertebrae and have a draft bill to reinstate the mandatory long-form census. John McCallum, point-man on this, said: 'A voluntary survey will skew the picture of what Canada really looks like as lower income minority Canadians will be less likely to fill it out,' which is pretty much what everybody who knows anything about this stuff has been saying.

When I read what Dimitri Soudas said, I actually laughed out loud.
Dimitri Soudas, the Prime Minister’s director of communications, was taken aback by Mr. McCallum’s statement about minority groups and low-income Canadians.

“It is blatantly outrageous that this (Michael) Ignatieff spokesman asserts that minorities and the poor should be threatened with financial fines and jail time in order to fill out the long form census,” said Mr. Soudas.

The Liberals “constantly look down on working class people and think they aren't as civic minded as liberal elites,” he said. “We believe that freedom is an essential Canadian value, and we don't think that it is right to try to frighten or intimidate people into surrendering huge amounts of private information to the government.”

After yesterday's (was it only yesterday?) 'The Russians are coming! The Russians are coming!' laff-riot triumph of Cold War rhetoric, methinks the wheels on the ReformaTory bus are wobbling a bit.


I fervently hope.

MASSIVE bomb ... err, ... plot .... hmm, ... something or other uncovered by RCMP

News item:
Two men arrested in Wednesday's anti-terrorism raids in Ottawa [...] appeared in court Thursday to face terrorism charges in an alleged bomb plot linked to al-Qaida.

Alizadeh has been charged with conspiracy to facilitate terrorism, possession of explosives and committing an offence for a terrorism group. Ahmed faces a single conspiracy charge of facilitating a terrorist offence. [...]

A third suspect was arrested Thursday morning, according to a report on the Toronto Star's website. The newspaper identified the third suspect as Khuram Sher of Montreal and said the Pakistan-born man once tried out for the Canadian Idol TV show.

The RCMP say that they had to arrest the suspects at this time because one of them had made plans to travel outside Canada.

How odd. The long arm of Stevie Spiteful's merry band of thugs and bullies has always been able to reach outside the country.

More timely and opportunistic security theatre tactics to divert Canadians' attention away from this?

An RCMP evaluation report of Canada’s long-gun registry concludes that the program is cost effective, efficient and an important tool for law enforcement, CBC News has learned. [...]

The full report contains over 40 pages of analysis of the effectiveness of the firearms registry, in both urban and rural areas.

Eh. The Cons' chickenshit lying lies have hit the fan, once again.

Wednesday 25 August 2010

Census Decision Is 'Mindless'

When it comes to heavy hitters in the sciencey-facty biz, they don't come any heavier than Nature. But that's where this report comes from.
Canada will pay a huge price for the Harper government's "short-sighted" decision to scrap the mandatory census, say leading U.S. statisticians.

"This decision will lower the quality and raise the cost of information on nearly every issue before Canada's government," Stephen Fienberg at Carnegie Mellon University and Kenneth Prewitt at Columbia University say Thursday in the journal Nature.

Fienberg elaborated in a telephone interview from Pittsburgh, saying the decision makes little sense and the added costs will be enormous.

"It's just mindless," he says, predicting that government will end up spending "billions" replacing the mandatory long-form census that was sent to 20 per cent of the population with the voluntary survey to be sent to 33 per cent.
. . .
"Government statistics are no less vital to a nation's scientific infrastructure than is an observatory or particle accelerator, and need stable funding and protection," they write in Nature under the headline 'Save your census'.

Detailed, reliable data is needed for everything from determining how many hospitals are needed, to tracking how poverty and prosperity relate to health or education, they say: "Census data provide the gold standard against which all other studies on such issues can be corrected and judged."

Concerns about privacy, soaring costs and plummeting response rates threaten censuses in many countries, but Fienberg and Prewitt say some of the arguments are unfounded.

"Privacy' concerns make for good sound bites, but the fact is that no one in government is more zealous about privacy protection than national statistics officers," they say.

Hmmm. Short-sighted, mindless, destructive, madly expensive. Must be anti-elite pseudo-populist ReformaTory policy.

By the way, over at Census Watch, the score -- updated yesterday -- is now 339 organizations, governments, political parties, professional bodies, and prominent individuals opposed to scrapping the long-form versus 11 rightwing thinktanks, ditto columnists, and a couple of Con MPs.

But when you add in the heft of a Nature article on the side of the angels, those 11 wingnuts go bouncing off into the stratosphere. Hopefully, never to be heard from again.

When a Blogging Tory Uses a Photo Like This . . .

. . . you know someone has bitten off a hunk of burning stooopid.

Here's one of them opining on the long-gun registry. First he (probably) outlines how everybody in Canada -- except the Frenchies and who gives a shit about them? -- is on side with scrapping the registry because everybody knows that those darned criminals just won't register their deer rifles. Then, with breathtaking (well, for a BT) clarity, he (surely) goes on:
So - with things going our way, what do we do?

* we build more prisons that we don't need, throwing money away while running a massive deficit, based upon ideological motivations unsupported by any evidence that more prisons will make us safer, based upon Stockwell Day's comments that they are to address "unreported crime"- hence taking away any "high ground" we otherwise have in the argument against spending money on "crime reduction" without evidence to support that crime is reduced
* on the virtual eve of what appears to be a probable successful vote to scrap the registry,we fire the R.C.M.P. head of the registry;
* after receipt of a report on the registry, which is suggested to be positive, we appear to bury the report until after the vote, and when called on this, the response of Vic Toews is “Canadians don’t need another report to know that the long-gun registry is very efficient at harassing law-abiding farmers and outdoors enthusiasts, while wasting billions of taxpayer dollars.”

Really Vic? How 'bout letting me and other Canadians decide what we "need", pal?

Because, while I'm no genius, I'm thinking if the report comes out later and is positive, it will give the hapless Michael Ignatieff yet another weapon to use to suggest the Conservatives are secretive and not to be trusted.

Gee, ya think?

But how the heck can the report be 'positive' if the gun registry is such a blight on our liberties?

The blogger says that they'll just explain that the report isn't really positive and then everyone can continue blithely ignoring all the facty-sciency-experty stuff they don't like.

Monday 23 August 2010

Who ya gonna believe?

The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police is having a bunfest in Edmonton and oh, looky here. They're honouring the guy who got axed sent on a language course because he strongly supports the long-gun registry.
As the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police Conference convened in Edmonton on Sunday evening, an absent RCMP Chief Supt. Marty Cheliak was honoured for his work as the director general of the Canadian Firearms Program.

Toronto police chief William Blair, the association president, presented the award in absentia to Cheliak, who is on leave from the national police force.

"He made the program work and I cannot overstate the enormity of his contribution to helping all of us in law enforcement and all Canadians understand better the value of that information," Blair said during the presentation.

The award follows Cheliak's removal as head of the program by RCMP Commissioner William Elliott.

Cheliak originally was supposed to present a report on a national firearms strategy at the conference, but was told by the RCMP that he would no longer be attending.

Yeeheehee. And no, of course Cheliak's removal was not, no-way, no-how political. He just developed an urgent need for a brush-up on his irregular French verbs.

Here's a link again to the excellent website Truths and Myths, set up by a by bunch of supporters of the registry, including cops, medical professionals, mental health activists, and the YWCA. More truthy-facty stuff can be found here and here. You know, for those times you're arguing with the shrieeekers at places like this for whom the debate is over once they've sneered: 'Oh yeah? Well, how many criminals are going to register their guns? Hmmmm?'

Another of their talking points is the MASSIVE poll done by a cop magazine. Now that we've all had the crash course on voluntary, self-selected truthy-facts versus the more rigorous kind of sampling a properly done census produces, let's see if we can see what's wrong with this:
Kuntz, a 22-year EPS [Edmonton Police Service] veteran, says 2,410 of the 2,631 officers from across the country he surveyed in Blue Line magazine since last spring believe “inaccurate” data from the registry is affecting police safety in every province and territory.

Officers 'believe' the data is 'inaccurate'. Oh. Well, then. Kinda like Shelley Glover, also an officer, believes that crime is rising despite what StatsCan says. And like this guy, who believes that nasty soap bubbles amount to assault.

Wikileaks and the wet spot.

The Guy Who Kicked Hornets' Nests Meets His Bareback Waterloo?

In a so-called newsgathering environment where the sexual shenanigans of Tiger Woods dominated several info-tainment cycles for several weeks, it's no surprise this story is emerging as the latest frisson du jour.

Many progressives are obsessed with this event, some even declaring that the fingerprints of the Pentagon, the CIA and perhaps M16 are all over this foiled attempt to smear Julian Assange and thus discredit Wikileaks.

Others are dissecting the institutionalized environment of sexual politics and gender-stalinism that apparently monitors all carnal interactions in Sweden.

Far from seeing in this imbroglio Andrea Dworkin's posthumous reach, I suspect that sexuality, like pretty much everything else in Sweden, has been codified in the most minute detail by the hygienic IKEA mindset.

The (possibly) bare facts of the event:

There's a tumescent cyber-mob of Assange groupies who use any and every web-based instrument to follow him and drool over his every move.

Assange stopped in Stockholm pour y mouiller l'ancre and in time-honoured tradition availed himself of the bounty of female pulchritude flinging itself at his feet, his head or some anatomical target in between.

There were sexual interludes in multitudes. Assange left town, still very much The Lone Ranger.

There was disappointment, and perhaps even a desire for revenge. Given that one of the complainants once blogged a manifesto for scorned lovers - her blueprint on how to wreak revenge - the result was predictable.

The method of inquiring about a possible sexual assault, the timing and the unofficial release of information regarding charges of Assange's alleged criminal behaviour are malodorous.

The contention at the crux of the alleged "sexual molestation" would be Assange eschewed the use of a condom.

Two things: If the conspiracy theorists are correct, and "They" are out to neutralize Assange, it would seem that his Achilles' ... ah, ... heel is now common knowledge.

And notwithstanding the immeasurable and heroic contributions Assange has made by developing Wikileaks and facilitating the dissemination of critical documents, he appears to be a common garden variety cad - et profiteur - when it comes to the nature of his interactions with women.

This contemporary Peter Pan fits the profile of a risk-chasing adrenaline junkie. With regard to his sexual practices, he would not be a role model to emulate. Sexually communicated diseases are on the rise and some variants on the original diseases have become resistant to antibiotic therapy.

For many die-hard admirers of Assange, his (rumoured*) cavalier attitude towards responsible, safe-sex choices only serves to heighten his allure and his charm.

This reasoned observation by arborman posted at Bread'n'Roses says it best:

"Whatever the truth of the case, none of it takes away from the importance of Wikileaks and what it is doing. And sadly, every single time anyone ever mentions anything that has been released by Wikileaks, the crazies will immediately mention the rape in Sweden that didn't happen. And the first sentence of my post will be endlessly repeated, to no avail.

Of course I hope he didn't do anything untoward. I find it unlikely that he would make such a colossal mistake, now of all times, without having done so in the past. But I also find it worrisome how quickly people are eviscerating the accusers."

Update: Assange and his supporters respond to the media event, as does the media.

* This is still speculative.

Saturday 21 August 2010

Catch 22 Harper Conservatives

Wow, I haven't written about Catch 22 Harper Conservatives since March.

Here are the Campaign Objectives:
Had enough of the Conservatives, their political gamesmanship and abuse of power? We've seen this government side-step Parliament through prorogation, committee boycotts and stonewalling. We've witnessed unprecedented secrecy, limits on media access, brinkmanship, and outright untruths. Without real consequences for these abuses, why should we expect any change from our politicians?

Catch 22 Harper Conservatives is a grassroots campaign to provide real consequences for the Conservatives’ disrespect of voters and Parliament. The objective of the campaign is to organize voters into an electoral force that will:

1) Contribute to the defeat of the Conservative government. We can achieve this by targeting at least 22 vulnerable, sitting Conservative MPs across Canada (at least one MP for each day of prorogation!) To succeed, we are proposing on-the-ground campaigns in selected ridings to hand out pro-democracy literature - before an election is called.

2) Raise awareness about Canada's democratic deficit, including our antiquated first-past-the-post voting system. The Conservatives aren't the first party in Canada to abuse their authority. We need a game-changer to improve accountability, transparency, representation and advance democracy.

Here are the targetted ridings/incumbents:
British Columbia
Kamloops–Thompson–Cariboo, Cathy McLeod
North Vancouver, Andrew Saxton
Surry North, Dona Cadman
Vancouver Island North, John Duncan

Saskatoon–Rosetown–Biggar, Kelly Block
Palliser, Roy Boughen
Saint Boniface, Shelley Glover

Brant, Phil McColeman
Essex, Jeff Watson
Haldimand–Norfolk, Diane Finley
Huron–Bruce, Benjamin Lobb
Kenora, Greg Rickford
Kitchener–Waterloo, Peter Braid
Kitchener Centre, Stephen Woodworth
London West, Ed Holder
Mississauga–Erindale, Bob Dechert
Oakville, Terence Young
Oshawa, Collin Carrie
Ottawa–Orléans, Royal Galipeau
Ottawa West –Nepan, John Baird

Beauport–Limoilou, Sylvie Boucher
Pontiac, Lawrence Cannon
Roberval–Lac-Saint-Jean, Denis Lebel

Atlantic Canada
Fredericton, Keith Ashfield
Miramichi, Tilly O'Neill-Gordon
Saint John, Rodney Weston
South Shore–St. Margaret's,Gerald Keddy
West Nova, Greg Kerr
Egmont, Gail Shea

Nunavut, Leona Aglukkaq

There are now local groups in the various ridings. Most are small yet, but the most popular one has 13 members.

I've said it before -- the Opposition is fucking useless. We have to do this ourselves.

Is your riding -- or one nearby -- on the list? Maybe you've got friends or relatives in the targetted ridings who need to know about this campaign.

Spread far and wide.

Canada can't take much more of this:

How to evangelize.

Start with vulnerable people, malleable individuals or a captive audience.
For the past several years, two U.S. Army posts in Virginia, Fort Eustis and Fort Lee, have been putting on a series of what are called Commanding General's Spiritual Fitness Concerts. [...]

On May 13, 2010, about eighty soldiers, stationed at Fort Eustis while attending a training course, were punished for opting out of attending one of these Christian concerts. The headliner at this concert was a Christian rock band called BarlowGirl, a band that describes itself as taking "an aggressive, almost warrior-like stance when it comes to spreading the gospel and serving God."

Gosh, doesn't that sound like a Faytene Kryskow kind of proselytizing. Amazons for Armageddon? Jezebels for Jay-Zeus?

The Commanding General's Spiritual Fitness Concert Series was the brainchild of Maj. Gen. James E. Chambers, who, according to an article on the Army.mil website, "was reborn as a Christian" at the age of sixteen. According to the article, Chambers held the first concert at Fort Lee within a month of becoming the commanding general of the Combined Arms Support Command and Fort Lee in June 2008. [...]

In the Army.mil article, Maj. Gen. Chambers was quoted as saying, "The idea is not to be a proponent for any one religion. It's to have a mix of different performers with different religious backgrounds." But there has been no "mix of different performers with different religious backgrounds" at these concerts. Every one of them has had evangelical Christian performers, who typically not only perform their music but give their Christian testimony and read from the Bible in between songs.

Well. Isn't that special?

Fortunately, the US Military Religious Freedom Foundation is supporting the soldiers' complaints.

Friday 20 August 2010

Wakey-Wakey, Toronto

I'm finding federal politics too depressing to blog about. So, let's turn to municipal politics, specifically Toronto, shall we?

We in Toronto have a major disaster looming, and I mean LOOOOOMING.

Rob Ford is running for mayor and at the moment -- early days yet, thank Gord -- is leading.

The inevitable Facebook group has been created: Anybody but Rob Ford for Mayor. From the info page:
This group is for those of us in the GTA who wish to spare ourselves the shame of having a man like Rob Ford representing our city. Polls show he has a slight edge over the other candidates. The goal is to watch for whichever non-Ford candidate is highest in the polls and offer them our support.

Here's a few choice quotes. Please feel free to contribute others.

Rob Ford on AIDS prevention...

"(AIDS) is very preventable, if you are not doing needles and you are not gay, you wouldn't get AIDS probably, that's bottom line." With respect to the increasing rates of women contracting the disease, Ford said; "How are women getting it? Maybe they are sleeping with bisexual men."

Rob Ford on bike lanes...

"I can't support bike lanes. Roads are built for buses, cars, and trucks. My heart bleeds when someone gets killed, but it's their own fault at the end of the day."

Rob Ford on why oriental people are taking over...

"Those Oriental people work like dogs. They work their hearts out. They are workers non-stop. They sleep beside their machines. That's why they're successful in life. I went to Seoul, South Korea, I went to Taipei, Taiwan. I went to Tokyo, Japan. That's why these people are so hard workers (sic). I'm telling you, the Oriental people, they're slowly taking over."

Rob Ford on G20 summit police brutality...

"I think the police were too nice. I would have had a zero tolerance approach."

Don't know about you, but I certainly don't want to see what Rob Ford considers an adequate amount of police brutality.

Some more choice 'colourful' comments from an excellent round-up at the Globe:
April 17, 2002: During a council debate on whether there should be homeless shelters across the city, rather than only downtown, Mr. Ford says: “This is an insult to my constituents to even think about having a homeless shelter in their ward. And you want me to have a public meeting to discuss this? Why don’t we have a public lynching?”
(There's video at the link.)

Yesterday, he called himself a 'family man' in a apparent swipe at married-with-child-but-gay George Smitherman.

Yeah, he's a family man all right (from Globe link).
March 26, 2008: After Mr. Ford’s wife, Renata, calls police to their home, Mr. Ford is arrested and charged with assaulting her and uttering a death threat. A month later, prosecutors drop the charges because inconsistencies in Ms. Ford’s accounts make a conviction unlikely. “It’s the happiest time in my life when my family’s all together. … That's all I wanted from the very beginning and that’s what I have now,” Mr. Ford tells reporters.
He also has truthiness and anger issues (Globe again):
April 15, 2006: Security guards remove a drunken and belligerent Mr. Ford from a Maple Leafs game after he shouts insults at an out-of-town couple. The attacks began after the man asks Mr. Ford to be quiet. Mr. Ford responds: “Who the fuck do you think you are? Are you a fucking teacher?” Failing to get a response, he turns his attention to the man’s wife: “Do you want your little wife to go over to Iran and get raped and shot?” The couple realizes the angry man’s identity after Mr. Ford leaves behind a business card. When reporters confront Mr. Ford with the couple’s complaint, he denies being at the hockey game. A day later, he comes clean, saying he lied because he felt “embarrassed and humiliated.” He also says: “I had one too many beers and I sincerely apologize.” Mr. Ford later e-mails the couple an apology, writing: “My complete lack of manners were unprofessional, immature, and do not in any way reflect my usual behaviour in public.”

And yesterday, there was the spectacle of his 'remembering' his marijuana bust in Florida. (Note that even the Toronto Sun is 'worried' about his truthiness.)

I don't give a shit about the marijuana. I do have a problem with the lying, anger, and general bottom-feeding mentality.

Wakey-wakey, Toronto. Remember how we laughed when Mel Lastman ran? Remember how gob-smacked we were when he won? Remember when he won AGAIN?

This can happen here.

The problem is the rest of the field. Smitherman is loathed by a great swath of the public. Rocco Rossi is a neo-con and wants to privatize a bunch of assets, including Toronto Hydro. Joe Pantelone is tarred with the Miller-crony brush and is running a dull campaign. There's also a woman named Sarah -- weeee! we get our own Sarah! -- with zip, zero, nada experience in politics but who is a self-made business woman. But this dolt wants to privatize -- wait for it -- the public library system. Really.

There may be others in this *yawn* race.

I can't think of any alternative to the Facebook strategy. Wait to see who's running strongest against him, then vote for him. (I will not vote for any ijit who wants to privatize my beloved library system.)

Any other ideas out there?

Thursday 19 August 2010

More fascist than Pope Maledict.

Dr Dawg caught Blob Blogging Wingnut doing what SHE does best - shriEEEking.
The folks at St. Joseph's Parish in Ottawa are supporting the Capital Pride march on August 29.

What, tolerance squeezing through the door of the Catholic church? Not so fast. Big Blue Wave's SUZANNE is MASSIVELY pissed, and she's ratted them out to the Archbishop.
HER obsession with homosexuality - who is and who isn't, who's intolerant and who isn't - borders on the manic.

In recent weeks, SHE has been cyber-stalking Raymond Gravel, a former BQ MP who was ordered by the Vatican Taliban (no doubt prodded by Ayatollah Ouellet) to choose between the priesthood and politics.

One of HER blogposts shriEEEked:
Fr. Raymond Gravel dumps on pro-lifers, again.
Actually, Gravel was defending himself from more attacks from The Fetus©™ fetishists' fundraising and marketing organ, Lies-Site.

HER most recent screed about him was:
Fr. Raymond Gravel Celebrates Gay Pride Mass

At a Catholic Parish in Montreal. On the Feast of the Assumption. If I find any more details, I'll let you know.

Imagine that. A catholic priest celebrating a mass for devoted and observant believers in Jesus - gay men, lesbians, transgendered folks as well as their supportive family members and community.

But then, we knew that SUZIE-CAPS-ON! is one of the more rabid busy-bodies and panties-sniffers in thrall to Pope Maledict's Vatican Taliban.

Tuesday 17 August 2010

Deflection, spoof, rebuttal or attack?

The choice of words depends on one's vantage point when observing how a Democratic pro-choice organization is responding to Sarah Palin's tactics.
EMILY's List, the feminist organization that works to elect pro-choice, Democratic women to office, has launched a campaign countering Sarah Palin's "Mama Grizzly" shtick, which the former governor has used to promote conservative women candidates. But because the group's response blurs the line between parody and rebuttal, its messaging is mixed.
Nicole Allan staff editor and political writer at TheAtlantic.com
is ambivalent though supportive.

Here is Stephanie Schriock explaining the rationale behind the campaign:

"I know Sarah Palin doesn't speak for me - or for millions of women and men across this country.

I'm a westerner myself - I'm from Butte, Montana - and I've watched with concern as Sarah Palin tries to co-opt the independent frontier spirit and patriotism of my part of the country, and turn it into a sort of national movement for backwards-looking, extremist politics. The strong western women who raised me and who are my role models would be horrified by the radical views of Sarah Palin and her candidates.

And then there's Forbes' Joel Kotkin outlining the reasons he calls Sarah Palin the Republican Party's Poison Pearl:
[...] if conservatives really want evidence of Palin's limitations, they only need to talk to people in her home state of Alaska. "She represents a constituency that is rural, but that's it," says Jim Egan, executive director of Commonwealth North, a local think tank. "What she says and does makes little sense in the urban environment that most Americans live in." If it does not sell across the board in Anchorage, home to almost half of Alaskans, you wonder how well her message will play in Omaha or suburban Houston, much less New York or Los Angeles.
See for yourself; here's the "Sarah Doesn't Speak for Me" video.

So, leave already!

Ayatollah Ouellet is multiplying the goodbyes and farewells, stretching out the time left in Canada to exploit the free publicity he's getting.

A controversial Roman Catholic priest extended an olive branch during his last sermon in Canada before leaving for his new job in Rome.

Marc Cardinal Ouellet offered an apology to his "brothers and sisters" Sunday during a farewell ceremony [...] In his homily, the cardinal said he was aware people have been hurt by some of his statements. [...]

In June, Ouellet was named chief of the Vatican's Congregation for Bishops, a committee that vets bishop appointments around the world.

'soxaphone player', one of Ouellet's more erudite supporters, said in the comments:
"I guess if Ouelette had broken Canadian laws, he would have been charged. Unfortunately for the RC bashers on this forum, Henry VIII is no longer king, so Catholics are no longer burnt at the stake simply for existing. Equally unfortunate that the inquisition is done."
Wow. Just ... wow.

We've blogged about Ayatollah Ouellet before, and in consideration of Pope Maledict's adolescent proclivities, offer this memorable performance for his departure.

In other news, The Star is reporting that a library shared by Nipissing University and Canadore College will bear the name of ex-premier Mike Harris.

Perhaps one of the strip joints on Sainte Catherine street in Montréal could have its warren of private lapdancing rooms named after Ouellet, but that would be an insult to the dancers and the memory of Lili St-Cyr.

Monday 16 August 2010

Gosh, sorry for the annoyance, Stevie.

By that, I'm not referring to the actions of that poor deluded soul who attempted to exorcise the malevolent spirit in residence at 24 Sussex last Saturday.

Go read
Alison at Creekside who nails Stalinist Steve in all his encapsulated & self-absorbed (aka narcissistic, as captured here) modus operandi.

Also at
The Galloping Beaver: Apparently we the public are "annoying" to Steve now - for voting up at Progressive Bloggers.

And. Too.
Get thee to 900ft Jesus.

Saturday 14 August 2010

We say newsworthy, Stalinist Steve's Politburo says "media generated event".

We say legal obligation - the Cons say concession.

We say endangering public safety by covert deregulation - they say the private sector will manage those risks.

We say better resources for preventing and reporting crime - they say more and bigger prisons.

We say intrusive prying into people's lives - they say the means justifies the end.

We say speak out - they say STFU.

We say MASSIVE Con Job - they say Harper's New©™ Government.

Isn't it time for Canadian voters to call off Stevie Spiteful and his subversion of democracy public affair with Stalinism?

Thanks to the goddess who brought Chet back to blogging at The Vanity Press - one of his posts inspired me to present today's episode of 'We say - the Cons say'.

Please contribute more examples.

And I forgot to give credit to this Scott's Diatribes post where the Cons spin term 'media generated event' is mentioned.

Thursday 12 August 2010

Crime Wave: Cons Rule.

Crime wave, we're having a ReformaTory crime wave.

Here's Vic Toews laying more ground work for justifying the building of mega-prisons.
Six Toronto Jewish groups are getting federal cash to combat hate crimes, Public Safety Minister Vic Toews announced Monday. Toews pledged almost $90,000 for the groups as part of the Communities at Risk: Security Infrastructure pilot program.

“The unfortunate reality is that Canada is not immune to those who target individuals or groups based on their race, culture, religion or identity,” Toews said [...] He stressed that while hate crimes often are limited to property damage, they still cause profound damage to those targeted. “Often hate-motivated crime can put an entire community into a state of fear and anxiety, this is unacceptable and that’s why we are here today,” he said.
From here.

Toews did not hand out money to community organizations working to prevent homophobic or gynophobic crimes or to provide support to those targeted, still suffering from the "profound damage" that physical and sexual assaults cause.

Wanna bet, dollars to donuts, that contracts to build and manage those privatized mega-prisons will be handed out to contributors who donated so generously to Stalinist Steve's re-election fund?

Here a little something to cheer you up.

Tuesday 10 August 2010

Bye-Bye, Becky Jane*

Of course, there's no backing down.
An auction of cattle raised on a Kingston, Ont., prison farm that many people have been trying to prevent is scheduled to take place in Waterloo Tuesday in spite of major protests over the last two days.

Three hundred dairy cows are up for sale at the Ontario Livestock Exchange. They're from a prison farm that for more than 100 years was part of Frontenac Institution.

Farming isn't relevant, they say. Hear that, Con-supporting farmers? Your life and life's work aren't relevant to these bozos.

So, what is relevant?

Who the hell knows?
Corrections officials haven't yet announced a program to replace the farms.

And how's this for gratuitous shittiness?
[Spokesthingy] said, for inmates who worked on the farm, one of their first jobs will be to tear down the buildings they worked in.

Isn't that this ReformaTory government in a nutshell? They are tearing down the country we live in.

Go read the comments at the CBC link. This is changing some people's minds and stiffening the resolve of others.

BONUS: Have a look at photos of the hippie/liberal/socialist protesters that Connie posted. Here's what she said about them:
There were a couple of things that struck me about those photos. First of all, the crowd looks like a bunch of our grandparents and family members. They are normal looking Canadians...the Tim Horton's crowd. If I was Stephen Harper, I would be worried about making these people mad.

Secondly, they had a hundred cops there, and a bus to take away the people they arrested. I fear for my country.

* My Uncle Jim named all his cows Becky Jane. What a kidder, Uncle Jim.

Monday 9 August 2010

The Simplest, Best Example

At the various anti-ReformaTory Facebook pages/groups, people are talking about annual visits with the fambly and being energized by what the oft-vaunted 'ordinary' Canadians are saying. They're saying that the census idiocy is senseless, the G8/G20 spending is shameless, the G20 police state is shameful. And so on. Ordinary Canadians are starting to geddit.

In the depth of summer yet.

I think this is the clearest and simplest example of how the ReformaTories operate.

The federal prison farm system is not broke. It has a lot of evidence-based research supporting it. It is cost-effective. It is humane.

Therefore, in teeny ReformaTory brains, it is SOSHALIST STATIST EVUL and must be destroyed. (Not to mention the cows.)

Even the faaar right (for the wrong reasons of course) supports the prison farm system.

And oooo, looky here. My close personal Facebook friend has posted a link to the poll.

ASIDE (well, mostly): A commenter at the CBC link said something like: 'Gee, that's great the PM showed up for the photo-op. How'd you convince him to wear the sign?'

Self-professed 'right-wing Judy Garland' ?!? (updated)

Gay. Back in the day, when the air was clean and sex was dirty, the word 'gay' only meant cheery, perky, happy. Now some of the unstraight guys in the US Republican party are trying to redefine 'fun'.

"The gay left has done their best to take all the fun out of politics, with their endless list of boycotts and protests. Homocon is going to be our annual effort to counter the 'no fun police' on the left," said Christopher Barron, Chairman of the Board of GOProud, in a statement. "I can't think of any conservative more fun to headline our inaugural party then (sic) the self-professed 'right-wing Judy Garland' - Ann Coulter."
here. Leaving aside the fact that those unfun boycotts and protests produced some significant advancements for lesbians and gay men - WTF?

Self-professed, eh? C'mon, you didn't really expect Coulter to refer to herself as the Republican Renée Richards?

So, what's next? Which other loathsome fundie, zealot or political figure will be recast in the name of 'fun'? How about Karl Rove: the 'right-wing Truman Capote'? Condaleezza Rice as the 'rightwing Whoopie Goldberg'?

Update: More here on Christoper Barron's perspectives regarding hate crimes. He appears to be a registered lobbyist - which explains why he thinks he's above using unfun boycotts and protests as political tactics.

Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

Un grand merci to LuLu, now at TGB, who flagged this special WTF? moment.

More on Harper, The Great Uniter

In a discussion on Why Harper thinks he's smarter than the experts at Macleans no less, a commenter at the Freaks named Fabulous Fred had this to say:
Harper had potential to be a good.P.M. if he didn't have so many personal flaws like being a control freak, having an ego so large that it allows him to do anything, anything at all to get a "majority" (never going to happen), and to stomp out opposition with fascist tactics and repressive government bureaucracies.

Stephen is yesterdays man. If the liebral party wasn't so incredibly pathetic, Harper would be gone by now. He isn't that good, they're that bad!

Indeedy-do, even his base base is tiring of King Stephen I.

Sunday 8 August 2010

Measuring Dissent

Help, please, sister and fellow bloggers and loyal readers. How can we find out what the most unpopular move by a Canadian government is?

I want to compare to the census senselessness. Now at Census Watch, the count is 265 civil society institutions versus 7, only 3 of which are actual organizations, the other 4 being columnists and an MP. (The list has been updated from 209 to 6.)

Of course, nowadays, dissent is much more easily registered and compiled. But there certainly have been highly unpopular moves before.

I thought of the National Energy Program and the use of the War Measures Act during the October Crisis.

Any other contenders? How might I/we go about trying to measure previous dissent against the current one?

Working mother wins human rights decision

In the 1970s feminists applied their intellectual acumen, emotional clout and political savvy to ensuring that women's work, in all its forms, was valued. The expression: 'Every mother is a working mother' became a rallying cry and women's right to work was supported. To a certain extent, this was also of benefit to men who became more engaged in childcare and educating their offspring.

In spite of the ditzy perorations of Sara "Choice for me, me, me" Landriault, there have been major advancements for working mothers - at home and in the labour force.

The sight of men pushing strollers in public places - on their own! - no longer shocks.

Yet there are still work environments who have resisted the needs of their employees' rights to fair accommodation, with regard to balancing their family responsibilities.

A Canada Border Services Agency officer who had to give up her full-time position after the birth of her first child has won a six-year battle with her employer over its failure to accommodate her. [...]

Johnstone had been working a variety of shifts as a full-time officer at Pearson Airport in Toronto and had a good record with her employers when she had her first child in 2003.

Both before going on maternity leave and before returning to work in 2004, Johnstone had asked her employer if she could come back on an altered schedule, one in which she worked three static 13-hour shifts a week, with no preferred start time. The unusual schedule was suggested so that she could care for her child on the four days she could not find available child care, while at the same time working the weekly hours needed to maintain her status as a full-time employee and retain her maximum pension.

Johnstone said because of the unpredictable shifts of the job, public or private child-care options were not available, but that she had found three days in which family members could care for her child. [...]

Her employer denied the requests, saying the Canadian Border Services Agency had an unwritten policy not to provide full-time hours to those requesting accommodation on the basis of child-rearing responsibilities. [...]

"When I asked for clarification on the policy and when I asked to come back full time they told me I couldn't and there was no reason given that was good enough," said Johnstone [...] The tribunal agreed, saying that the agency didn't establish a strong enough case that altering the schedule to accommodate Johnstone would have constituted an undue hardship for the employer and other workers.

This is a very important decision for working mothers and fathers, as well as other workers who may request an accommodation of their employer to handle family responsibilities, such as caring for a spouse ill with cancer or an elderly parent with Alzheimer's.

After all, mothers - and fathers - are working, productive members of our society.

Thursday 5 August 2010

Stoopid on Governance

Remember this? It was yesterday.
"We don't govern on the basis of statistics," Nicholson said. "We govern on the basis of what we hear from the public and what law enforcement agencies tell us. That has not changed in the four and a half years we've been in government."

This is today.
A newly released government poll suggests most Canadians don't see crime as a big issue -- even as the Conservatives press on with their get-tough agenda.

When asked in January which issue the government should focus on most, only one per cent of people answered crime.

So that's the public heard from.

As for listening to law enforcement agencies, have a look at this website devoted to supporting the long-gun registry that the ReformaTories are so hot to kill.

Here are the first three organizations listed:
The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police
The Canadian Police Association
The Canadian Association of Police Boards

Not paying any attention to the people, the experts, or the facts. That's our Conservativacy of Dunces.

(Psst, sister and fellow bloggers: You think the Opposition War Rooms are keeping tabs on us? They bloody well should be, we're doing all their research for them.)

Dog practices medicine without a license.

It's not quite as splashy as the headline-grabbing "Dog eats God" from Bene Diction Blogs On, but this caught my attention.
Jerry Douthett, the diabetic man whose terrier, Kiko, chewed off his infected toe while he lay in a drunken stupor, told the Grand Rapids Press that Kiko often sniffed his foot. [...]

His toe was infected to the bone, and surgeons amputated what was left of the digit.

Douthett credits his dog with saving his life.

That's a pic of Kiko without the "blood moustache" (Douthett's words). The variety of ways that various online news-disseminating (not so much news-gathering any more) headlined this event is interesting.

Wednesday 4 August 2010

Harper: The Great Uniter? UPDATED with interesting development

From the Stooopid on Crime file.

Fill up those new jails by designating more offenses as 'serious' thus meriting long sentences. But call it getting tough on organized crime, because these are gangs' 'signature activities'.
The crimes now designated as serious offences include:
* Keeping a common gaming or betting house.
* Betting, pool-selling and bookmaking.
* Committing offences in relation to lotteries and games of chance.
* Cheating while playing a game or in holding the stakes for a game or in betting.
* Keeping a common bawdy-house.
* Various offences in the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act relating to the trafficking, importing, exporting or production of certain drugs.

Whatever one thinks of this bright shiny thing move, there are two points that should unite left and right in disdain for this government.

First, the changes were made to the regulations not to the law. See, this way the government can avoid any pesky discussion as we used to have when Canadian democracy had a bit of life in it yet.

Shouldn't that distress democracy-loving Canadians on the faaar right? If this goes unchallenged, all future governments will avail themselves of this little side-step. Including the loathed Lie-berals (as they are styled on the Dark Side) because someday, the Lie-berals will get back in power.

Next, the changes were made quietly by order of cabinet on July 13. More than four weeks ago. Yet this nugget of lawnorder was held back from the usual public razzle-dazzle. Maybe to be trotted out to distract from some spectacular Ministerial face-plant?

The righties should be just as disgusted as the rest of us. Do the HarpoCons really really really really think we're that stoooopid?


To recap some of the issues left and right can agree on:
Doris's hypocrisy -- not to mention idiocy -- over the prisons issue

keeping the prison farm system

the suspension of civil liberties and police over- and under-reaction in Toronto during the G20

being treated like suckers -- the so-cons that is -- the Cons take their votes for granted then and ignore all their issues

repeatedly suspending democracy by proroguing parliament

stacking the Senate and

just generally crapping all over democracy

It's true. It may turn out that Stevie really is the Great Uniter.

UPDATE: Connie starts a discussion. *evul grin*

They're making a movie, you see?

At Willy's FFIB and Impolitical, we read that Stevie Grudgiepants' PMO - also known as Harper's Politburo - said:
it is "extremely disappointed" federal funds went to a theatre festival that will stage a play this week that features, in the words of the playwright, a "sympathetic portrayal" of a convicted terrorist [...] Catherine Frid's one-act play "Homegrown" opens Thursday night in Toronto as part of the Summerworks theatre festival [which] received $35,000 in federal funding to mount "Homegrown" and 41 other one-act plays.
No surprise there - remember, the young Spiteful told Susan Crean, the co-author of 'Two Nations' with Quebec activist/sociologist Marcel Rioux: "You should not have been allowed to write that book."

First the Con-Fabulators trash the long-form census questionnaire because they don't want to be accountable to pesky data, facts and scientific stuff. Then they morph into the Con-Jecters©™ who insist their ill-conceived program to build mega-jails is valid, using ancient (2004?) StatsCan info to craft a story that fits their ideological needs. Stockwell "Doris" Day's performance yesterday left media and most folks thinking WTF that all about?

Everything the ReformaTory cabal does is scripted for the screen and for the glory posterity of their narcissist/sociopath leader. Oh, and the Party too.

It's not about the troops, the economy or even governing, stupid!

It's all about the narrative. They're making a movie, you see.

With our tax munee.

Here's someone who was way ahead of the curve: the dazzling and prescient genius of Joe Hall et Le Drift Continental.

More Sheep Looking Up

Continuing to work on my scheme of getting getting left and faaaar right working together to rid us of King Stevie. . .

At least one Blogging Tory has the sense and grace to be embarrassed by Doris's performance yesterday.

The blogger takes Doris's various idiocies apart, then goes on:
But I'm not done.. no, not by a long shot. Because at the end of the day, one of the major complaints that we, as conservatives have regarding previous Liberal governments is that they embark on questionable social programs, costing the tax payers billions of dollars, for purely political reasons - because it helps capture votes from their base.

Remember the Gun Registry?

So - as we let that sink in for a moment, it becomes abundantly apparent that our current Government, under Stephen Harper, is embarking upon a program to reach into my wallet and spend my hard-earned tax dollars, without any statistical or verifiable evidence that this new social engineering is necessary, or that it will have any impact on addressing the issue of crime in any event.

No - they are doing the same damn thing we complained the Liberals did with the Gun Registry.. and that makes us worse.

Because it's one thing to be stupid.

It's worse to be a stupid hypocrite.

Over on the Dark Side, on the same topic of building prisons for perpetrators of unreported crime, my Facebook friend (she is! we friended each other!) Connie said:
This government is giving me the creeps.

Another poster named LAR said:
The logic escaped me as well. I'm sure there's a lot of unreported crime but spending billions for more prisons isn't going to do anything about it.

Let's celebrate the solidifying union of lefties and righties, who agree -- for vastly different reasons of course -- that these ReformaTories are poison.

And let's celebrate it LOUDLY.

(Doncha love the smell of piss-soaked Conservative undies in the morning?)

MORE: Another Blogging Tory who thinks Doris is wrong on crime.
The problem is that it is very unclear why exactly crime is going unreported. Does it represent a lost faith in the police or the criminal justice system in general? Is it due to an immigrant population that have a natural mistrust of authority? Is it due to increased gang activity and the fear of reprisal? It would take a number of very comprehensive studies to discern the true cause of the decrease in crime reporting.

So if we don’t know the cause then how the hell do we know the solution?

Does increasing the prison population help to prevent crime that is not going reported? I can’t imagine any theoretical argument or empirical evidence that would support a claim that it would. If the Conservative government is really concerned about crime in Canada they should look into the causes and solutions to unreported criminal activity.

Imagine that. Another fan of facts among the BTs.

Pssst. Click the linkies, so the bloggers can feel the love from the left.

Tuesday 3 August 2010

Open Thread: Fave Jokes

I'm feeling gloomy on a buncha fronts.

So. . . Fave Joke Thread.

I got two:

1. The first joke I ever got. I was about 7. It's sexist and racist and nine other kinds of bad.

Cop stops a woman driving the wrong way on a one-way street.

Cop asks: 'Lady, didn't you see the arrows?

Woman: 'What arrows? I didn't even see the Indians.'

2. Two little boys find a five-dollar bill on the street. One of them goes off into sugar-fuelled fantasies -- how many candy bars, how many ice-cream cones. The other says: 'No. What we should get is a box of Tampax.'


Tampax boy: 'Then we can go swimming, horseback-riding, surfing. . . '

Over to you. Fave jokes, the cornier and hoarier the better.

Monday 2 August 2010

"Security" is more sexy than safety.

The 1.75 million dollars increase to the PMO operating budget was defended by
a spokesperson for the Prime Minister [who] said he believed the costs were essential.

There is more pressure in a 24-hour news cycle for ministers, MPs and the government to respond, said Andrew MacDougall, [...] “We’ve made the conscious effort to really step up our efforts and frankly, in contrast with past communications shops, to be out there more and be more helpful,” he said.

When I heard about this in the wee hours of the morning on Radio-Canada, I had a vision of a cellar room in the Langevin Building, filled with flunkies graduates from the Laurentian Leadership Centre spinning away furiously on stationary bikes, with Stevie Grudgiepants shouting at them: "Pedal faster! Our story has to top the next news cycle."

It turns out that no matter what one imagines the next outrageous Con fabrication to be, the actual news manipulation will surpass all expectations.

The airport "security crisis", precipitated by an amateur YouTube purportedly showing two veiled women passing through an Air Canada boarding gate without being forced to show their faces, is now the top story.

Though not the allegation Transport Canada is short-staffed by 98 aviation safety inspectors, which could explain why the ministry shifted the focus by claiming Aéropro disregarded maintenance regulations.

You can bet if a plane full of passengers crashes in Alberta that Harper's PMO will spin the story to blame the Opposition. Or unions. Or veiled muslim women.

Puff spending for PMO and life-endangering cuts to Transport.

From the Canadian Press, we learn more about Stevie Spiteful's choices, as to where to spend taxpayers' money.

The cost of running the Prime Minister’s Office will jump by more than $1-million this year, mostly because of communications expenses. [...] The Canadian Press has learned it will hit about $9.89-million, compared to last year’s $8.15-million on spending.

The PMO has hired another 20 people in the last year, including more staff to handle regional and ethnic media, as well as direct government communication, such as the ad blitz on the economic action plan.

Meanwhile, Transport Minister John Baird says he's "deeply disturbed" because airlines may not be following regulations that require boarding agents to check all passengers' faces against their passport photo.

Yet industry concerns about the staffing crisis at Transport Canada - a reported shortage of 98 inspectors - dont appear on Baird's radar. A statement about the dwindling numbers of aviation safety inspectors was made by Yvan-Miville Des Chênes, broadcast in a Radio-Canada interview. Yesterday, as a result of ongoing investigations into recent crashes of Aéropro-operated passenger flights, Transport Canada closed down its operations.

Think about it. Not enough inspectors to ensure that planes are safe to fly. Yet Baird chooses to focus on veiled women because this "poses a serious threat to the security of the air travelling public”.

Perhaps a "fiscal conservative" is someone who hasn't yet enjoyed the skyfall benefits of Stevie Spiteful & his cadre of thugs and trough-feeders' slashing of government inspectors positions.

The Cons are doing exactly what balbulican describes here, in the comments after Dawg' post: "The Harper strain of conservatism believe that governments should not govern. An interim, transitional strategy is to govern really badly."