Friday 23 October 2015

Fixing Canada, Part I: 24 Sussex Drive

The new Prime Minister's mother, Margaret, told CBC news that the PM will not be moving into the notoriously decrepit and outrageously expensive to maintain official residence at 24 Sussex Drive. (Kady O'Malley, though, says no decision has been taken.)

Since we Canadians own the building, managed by the National Capital Commission (NCC), it has been irksome, to say the least, that former PM (ooh, that is sooo nice to type) was being an an asshole about facilitating needed repairs by moving out. (Bold mine.)
Stephen Harper is at odds with the Crown corporation that manages the prime minister’s official residence, saying there are no plans to renovate 24 Sussex Drive even as the National Capital Commission asserts anew the need for more than $10-million in repairs deemed “urgent” four years ago.

Mr. Harper’s office at the time said the prime minister would not vacate the property between then and the next election.
The NCC has a budget for this sort of thing.

But noooo. Wags suggest that Harper was afraid "we the landlords people" would change the locks on the building the second he vacated.

Well, now he has been booted out by his landlords.

On Twitter this morning, I suggested that we raze the sucker and hold a competition among Canadian architects to build something new and snazzy. The building is not architecturally important and, even though designated a National Heritage Site, is really not very historically important, serving as official residence since only 1951.

Acknowledging that this is not high on the long, long list of immediate priorities to fix Canada, I still think it would be fun, just for the RWNJ reaction to Trudeau taking it down.

Also, I love the symbolism of razing the house Harper wouldn't move out of.

Cooler heads prevailed and @CodieneC had a excellent idea.

Holmes is, of course, Mike Holmes, ace renovator and telly star.

And what an educational show it would be! Invite historians to tell stories of parties, negotiations, shenanigans. Architectural historians to discuss features of the building and antiques experts to talk about furniture and what-not.

A private-public partnership we could get behind. HGTV gets ad revenue, NCC gets the work done in a timely fashion, Canadians get edumacated.


Somebody pitch this to Holmes and HGTV. Or start a petition.

Wednesday 21 October 2015

Is Our Pro-Lifers Losing? Part II: The "Grassroots" Reaction

First, the bloggers: SUZY ALL-CAPS has been quiet for quite a while. SHE says she's rethinking what SHE wants to do with her blog. Focus on the Family (Canada branch) and Dominionist We Need a Law (Like a Hole in the Head) haven't got their shit together yet, though head Dominionist Mike Schouten makes a reassuring guest video appearance at the amateur statistician's blog.

LieShite, however, is going nuts. There are at least four articles on the evil that is Justin Trudeau and what to expect from our new majority CULTURE OF DEATH government.

This one is titled "Justin Trudeau: ‘bad news' – the evidence."

“Like his father, Justin Trudeau is a left-wing ideologue who wants to remake Canada in his own radical image,” said [Paul] Tuns [editor of Catholic rag "The Interim"], who recently published “The Dauphin: The Truth About Justin Trudeau.”

The Liberal leader will try “to foist upon the country social change that will include expanded abortion, permissive euthanasia, easy access to drugs, and other departures from moral sanity and our cultural tradition, all under the guise of promoting Canadian values and the Charter of Rights,” Tuns predicts.

Moreover, “he’s the most pro-abortion politician I’ve every seen.”
He'll also put a brothel in every Starbuck$.

The article contains the de rigueur photo of papa Pierre with "his friend dictator Fidel Castro."

It garnered only five comments.

Another article though, titled "Pro-lifers lament Justin Trudeau's Liberal sweep" has 41 comments.

A sampling:
I am not pro- or anti- Harper (mostly because I don't have enough information to form any opinion). Many people I know didn't even vote "for" Trudeau, but "against" Harper. They hate Harper with passion, but if you ask them why, they can't really form an answer.

Not providing legal protection for the unborn by Stephen Harper has lost him the election.....God will NOT bless a man or a country that has the blood of so many innocents on its hands-----

Just like George W. Bush, John Harper did poorly for the country, and made conservatives their own worst enemy.

And the one that inspired my blogpost title:
The procentage of people voting for Conservatives in this elections indicate the sad truth about how many Canadians still have brains and is able to use it. Sad, very sad

Continuing DJ's tradition of selfless service to our readers, I spent 15 minutes I'll never get back listening to a "round table" sponsored by Dominionist Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA).

The participants, including our pal Mike Schouten, are pretty discouraged. Schouten points out that many anti-choicers were losers -- hell, we coulda told him that -- but finds a silver lining in that fetus freak CONs who did get elected will no longer be "muzzled" by that anti-Christ John Harper.

They were also disappointed that medically assisted suicide was not more of a campaign issue and one of them (they were all men, by the way) said that there was "too much" talking about economic issues like taking from the rich and giving to the pesky poor.

The moderator asked if they had any friends left and a few old names were reeled off, plus a new special friend, Arnold Viersen for Peace River-Westlock, who is "the former treasurer of the Barrhead/Neerlandia chapter of the Association of Reformed Political Action."

(I post the pic from the article, mainly because the caption notes that the photo was "supplied," i.e. approved by the candidate, presumably. Doesn't he look like the archetype fetus fetishist?)

Near the end, participants are asked to sum up. Or to quote the questioner: "Where is God going with this?"

They seem to agree that Canadians made a HUGE mistake and will regret it. We Canadians are sadly misguided and mistaken. We are really much more conservative than we realize, apparently. God is gonna smite us for that. (OK, I made that last bit up.)

They also agree they've got their work cut out for them.

And no doubt, many, many more fundraising opportunities in SHRIEEEKING about that Communist, Homo-Enabling, Prostitute-Loving, Death-Cult Leader Trudeau.

We look forward to four or five fun years ahead.

UPDATE (Oct. 22/15): Fetus freaks lick their wounds and helpfully identify the new anti-choicers in the House.

Part I: Is Our Pro-Lifers Losing?

Is Our Pro-Lifers Losing?* Part I: The New Government

First, the happy dance. Press Progress reports on 12 "star" Cons who will no longer be with us. Its list contains several cabinet ministers who went down to defeat, as well as Numero Uno MP Fetus Freak, Stephen Woodworth.

Of other prominent CON dinosaurs: Vellacott and Benoit didn't run;
in addition to Woodworth, Lizon also lost; and Warawa and Trost are baaaack.

Also back are the "grandfathered-in" (appropriate term, yes?), but now supposedly muzzled Liberals for Life: Kevin Lamoureux, Lawrence MacAuley, John McKay, Francis Scarpallegia, and Borys Wrzesnewskyj.

Both the anti-choice Lib and NDP candidates I wrote about here lost too.

There are, of course, many unknowns among the new CONs. Macleans put out a nifty graphic you can sort by various criteria such as age, gender, region, and incumbent/rookie status. By my count, there are 33 CPC rookies.

Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada has issued new estimates of anti-choice MPs. They figure we're down to 18% of the new House compared to 36% of the previous gang.

So, pro-choice upshot of Election 2015: we can relax a little. Given that the Liberals got a majority and the newly explicit stand of the party is pro-choice, it's unlikely the government will introduce any sneaky new measures or even tolerate private member's bills or motions from its own back benches.

The NDP won't either, so we'll be keeping an eye on the usual CON suspects, while assessing the new goobers.

Trudeau promised many things on the campaign. We'll be watching for abortion funding to be returned to Canada's foreign aid programs and for the scoff-law provinces of Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick to be brought to heel.

More thoughts on his other promises to come.

* Title's origin will be revealed in Part II.

UPDATE (Oct. 22/15): LieShite identifies new fetus freak MPs for us.

Friday 16 October 2015

Anti-abortion Incrementalism and Death Threats

Why have I not heard of Prairie Dog before? I was alerted to it by a tweet from the astroturf gang Focus on the Family (Canada branch plant). (But more on that in a minute.)

Kelly Malone attended a LifeTour event in Regina and reported on it under the title "Slippery Slopes."

This tour is the work of the Dominionist "We Need a Law" gang -- they of the underground gas line marker displays -- fronted by our old pal Mike Schouten.

Malone outlines the gang's "sneaky" strategy, aka incrementalism.
Rather than fighting for a “perfect law” that would ban all abortions, Schouten outlines three laws he thinks could realistically be passed: first, a ban on late-term abortions (which the presentation didn’t mention are uncommon and only performed when the woman’s life is at risk). Second: a law against sex-selective abortions.

And last but not least? A law for the so-called “pre-born” victims of crime that, conveniently, would enshrine fetal “rights” in law.
Here at DJ! we've written tons on the last two -- not much on the first, because as noted, it doesn't float Canadian boats as it does USian ones. For example, on sex-selective abortion and on "pre-born" victims of crime, aka the failed Bill C-484, and its newer incarnation, Molly's Law.

But back to Focus on the Family. In a blogpost titled "Smart", Mrozek links to the Prairie Dog post and calls it "a fair pro-choice look at a pro-life event." Then she quotes and lauds the first comment.
Hi Prairie Dog! Thanks for a well written article. I’m wondering what were the questionable scientific facts presented at this particular talk? Were you able to either confirm or deny them?

She neglects to remark on the other five (well, four if you discount the repeat) usual hectoring comments from fetus fetishists.

I too linked to Prairie Dog this morning and The Shocker focussed on one of the other more usual comments.

We who watch the zygote zealots -- precisely because they are sneaky -- know this.

LieShite has many many articles about "heroic" women who declined abortion even in the face of life-threatening illness in order to serve Gawd and produce another orphan. Because, you see, in the fetus fetishist universe, abortion is NEVER necessary to save the life of the incubator woman.

Also, at LieShite, and no doubt other even creepier sites, there are regular celebrations -- really, there is no other word for it -- when ambulances are called to abortion clinics. This is from a search on the site for "ambulance."

The recent #ShoutYourAbortion campaign on Twitter proved it again. Women who participated were variously vilified and frequently threatened with death.

Here's a funny take on those "pro-life" reactions.

"Pro-lifers" frequently wish death on women who abort and people who support their right to do so. That they really think they don't is just another example of their quite terrifying delusion.

Thursday 15 October 2015

Campaign 2015: New Twist on "No Country for Old White Men"

It's almost over, folks. The longest, and dare I say, dirtiest election campaign in Canadian history will soon be toast.

I'm not going to speculate on the outcome -- I'm barely hanging on to my sanity as it is -- but I thought I should provide a round-up of the campaigns from a prochoice perspective.

We all know that Harper is the worst prime minister ever but he's been particularly awful for women of all sorts, and of course even worse for Muslim, Indigenous, and other minority women. Here's Shit Harper Did's look at his record, titled: "Shush baby! Just look pretty. 17 ways the Conservative government has controlled you like a terrible boyfriend."

The 2011 campaign had its bozo eruptions on the misogynist front, but Harper managed to maintain his tight-lipped "my government will not reopen the abortion debate" mantra.

And the stenographers we laughingly call the mainstream media mostly reported just that.

This time, though, there has been a little more attention paid to the most basic of women's rights, abortion. (Call me old school feminist, but if we don't have control of our reproductive lives, all the pay equity in the world means squat.)

Press Progress published a totally predictable list of 86 CON anti-choice candidates.

All the usual suspects are there with a couple of wee twists.

Blogger Robert Jago has been digging into the online lives of CON candidates and found some interesting stuff. We reported on one of his finds, religious nutbar, antichoice homophobe Toyin Dada.

He also found Saskatchewan's Michael Kram in a literal cover-up of his extremist views, which the CBC ran with.

No MSM was interested in Toyin, though.

Another minor bozo eruption occurred when old comments by Manitoba candidate "Professor Popsicle", Gordon Geisbrecht, made the news. Supposedly a scientist, he equated the number of abortions to "a 9/11 every day."

None of this is surprising, really.

What's new this time, is the explicit statement by Justin Trudeau that the "Liberal" party would no longer tolerate antichoice voting by its old white farts. This caused a stir among the fetus freaks who responded with gore and hyperbole in its No 2 Trudeau mission.

What was more interesting to us was the double-plus good rating given by Campaign Lie to London-Fanshawe Liberal Khalil Ramal from his time as an Ontario MPP.

He apparently promised never to act on his misogynist and homophobic beliefs and that made it A-OK with the "Liberals."

Another poser, though, came from the chest-beatingly prochoice NDP who are also running a anti-abortion, anti-same-sex-marriage candidate, K.M. Shanthikumar.

He too said: "Hahahahaha. Only blowing dog whistles for my peeps" and that made it peachy-keen with the NDP brain trust.

Among the grassroots, in addition to the gore-fest of No 2 Trudeau, the underground gas line marker gang got on their bus for what they styled Life Tour.

These efforts resulted in a couple of local news stories in antediluvian Saskatchewan, here and here.

But overall, abortion has not played much of a role in this election.

WHICH IS AS IT SHOULD BE in a country with a long-established and proud record of upholding women's rights to bodily autonomy.

And while we're pleased that an organization with a bit more reach than the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada or bloggers like us found some time to publish a list of avowed misogynists, we're rather concerned that both PROCHOICE parties, the NDP and the Liberals, are allowing antichoice homophobes to run.

Both candidates, we note, are from visible minority groups and presumably are expected to have some extra clout in those communities.

So, the take-away: the prochoice parties are saying quietly: we don't really expect (targetted) minority groups to assimilate to the law of the land when it comes to women's rights.

Because, as everyfuckingbody on the planet knows -- women's rights are always negotiable.

Or, as we said before, Canada may be "no country for old(stock) white men," but it seems it's fine for New Stock Men.

Thursday 8 October 2015

Partisanship Is Sooooo Over

Partisanship is at best silly, at times ugly, and right now it's bloody dangerous.

Since PMSHithead got his minority I've been imploring the Fucking Useless Opposition® (FUO) to get their act together and actually OPPOSE this government's destruction of Canada. You know, like they're supposed to do.

But no. They'd rather bash each other.

And now, we've got perhaps the LAST CHANCE to boot Stephen Harper and his band of vandals, and they're bashing each other even harder.

The majority of Canadians could Campbellize the hated Harperoids, if only the FUO® would co-operate with each other a teensy bit.

But no.

This morning, the story about the Short-Pants Brigade taking over from the Immigration Department and making literal life and death decisions based on political expediency drove me over the edge.

I decloaked.

Connie responded.

Connie's dismay at the Harper government has been brewing for some time. In February this year I linked to this at Free Dominion.
Canadian conservatives don't deserve to have a majority government.

There. I said it. I haven't given up on conservatism. Actually, quite the opposite. I have just come to the conclusion that it is not in the interest of conservatism (or liberty or democracy, for that matter) for the Conservative Party to remain in power.

Her main beef then and now is the Jihadis Under Every Bed Law, aka C51. Free Dominion reopened its forum to join the fray against it.

As I wrote then:
It beats the hell out of me why anyone purportedly in this fight -- and it is the fight of the decade at the very least -- would scorn any ally. But some are too pure to join forces with groups they otherwise disagree vehemently with.

Just as now, it beats the hell out of me why anyone would scorn any ally in the fight to get rid of the worst government in Canadian history.

And Connie has other issues with the Harper Party, so when I heard that she was writing a book addressed to her fellow Conservatives, I offered to help.

She accepted. I proofread and indexed the book. It's called Betrayed.

From the Introduction:

In this book, I will be making the case that conservative Canadians have a responsibility to keep our government in check.  When a leader that we have elected goes off the rails and begins to dismantle the very fabric of our democracy, we have a duty to send our own people into the political wilderness until they learn to handle the unfettered power of a majority government with the care and respect it deserves.

Perhaps you are thinking right now that I am not giving Stephen Harper enough trust.  You might think that he is not the type of man to abuse legislation that allows warrantless government access to our personal information, or legislation that allows judges, in secret trials, to give CSIS permission to do virtually anything but rape us or kill us.

His record tells a different story as I detail in Chapter ten.

But,  even if you do trust Stephen Harper and discount my reading of events, he is not going to be the Prime Minister forever. You have a responsibility to ask yourself if you trust the level of power that Harper has consolidated in the PMO in the hands of every potential new government that this country ever elects.

If the answer to that question is "no", then we must accept that Stephen Harper, by ramming through some very perilous legislation --most  notably Bill  C-51, the  Anti-Terrorism Act -- has put future generations in danger. For that reason alone he must be stopped. I will be talking in this book about Free Dominion's history and about some  of our experiences with censorship and "disruption" that have occurred already, under the watch of our Conservative government.
I'm pretty sure that regular readers here need no more reasons to vote against Harper, but maybe you've got Conservative friends and family you're going to be seeing this Thanksgiving weekend.

You could print out copies of Connie's Introduction and hand them around the table. *evil grin*

Or not.

So, what's the point of this blogpost?

To show ALL YOU "PROGRESSIVE" JACKASSES that common cause exists.

And that the stakes are high enough.

Do something to stop Harper.

And stop bashing each other.


Regular readers may remember that Connie and I have history. We've agreed on issues like prorogation, the G20 police state in Toronto, prison farms, and the need for better definition of online defamation. And of course the Jihadis bill.

We've both taken shit for our occasional public agreement. Notably, but perhaps not surprisingly, from male people who seem to think we need policing for consorting with each other.

It may amuse, then, to learn of my "price" for helping with Connie's book.

It was inspired by Canadian Cynic, who, in support of the documentary "Election Day in Canada," tweeted this:

I asked Connie to make a donation to the film in her own name. I didn't ask her to make any kind of statement about it.

But she did.

Tuesday 6 October 2015

Droit au but!

Straight into the goal. NOT.

Are arrogant old creeps with an exalted sense of entitlement drawn to Olympic organizations because of the perks: a wide field of physically admirable and goal-oriented young women and men?

Slimy Marcel Aubut, ex-president of the Canadian Olympic Committee, is allegedly a long-time practitioner of a medieval tradition known as "le droit de cuissage". That term was revived in the French media following allegations against Dominique Strauss-Kahn. 

And these actions (described in excruciating, crude detail in several media news items) were allegedly tolerated because Aubut is wealthy, a gregarious schmoozer (he's an habitué of grandiose sporting events such as Montréal's Grand Prix), politically well-connected, a successful fundraiser, etc. etc. 

Doesn't that sound familiar: alleged habitual sexual harasser gets away with it because other men in the organization find it more beneficial to pretend it isn't happening.  Women who speak up are told to deal, to be a "good sport" about it or to look for another job. Rarely is the problem fixed - that is, the harasser told to stop.

In case you thought his repellent actions were only directed at menial support staff members, it seems "good ol' boy" Marcel always rose to any "opportunity" in a skirt.
TVA reported that Aubut settled a sexual harassment claim at his law firm, Heenan Blaikie, in 2011, over groping, verbal harassment and inviting a woman into a room only to show up wearing boxer shorts. In La Presse, lawyer and Canadian Soccer Association board member Amelia Salehabadi-Fouques alleged Aubut forcibly kissed her in a restaurant, verbally harassed her, and tried to enter her hotel room, also in 2011.

It's been reported that COC did try to read the riot act to Aubut.  Just as some un-neutered old dogs still try to hump just about anything in sight, some privileged old white men just can't stop playing their vile old patriarchal tricks.

Aubut's most recent peccadillo was a covert operation jiggered with Toronto Mayor John Tory as they colluded in trying to finagle an Olympic bid without the approbation of city council.

My co-blogger fern hill led the charge, writing and tweeting in support of #NoTO2024.  Her trenchant blogposts on that issue are here.

But now, Aubut has *resigned*.  I suspect he was given a spectacularly shiny golden handshake to speed him on his way.  Hopefully the women who allegedly had to endure his groping, his greasy kisses and his disgusting salacious comments in the work environment were just as generously compensated.

Ha! Kidding! Unless they hired a lawyer to secure a financial agreement, the COC will give them nothing for the humiliation they suffered

Finally: remember that one woman got very angry, d'une crisse de sainte colère and officially filed a complaint about Aubut's actions.  She was the tipping point, actually more than that: 
“I hope people don’t lose sight of the strength it took for this lady to come forward, faced with a very, very powerful individual,” says Rudge. “And to have the courage to challenge what had gone on, and the courage of her convictions to follow through and get a resolution to an issue for many, many other women who weren’t in a position to come forward.”

That, as much as anything, is the underlying lesson in all this. Nobody truly challenged Marcel Aubut, until somebody did. If you’re looking for the Olympian in all this, there you go.
Note: the above blogpost was edited to judiciously add the words "alleged" and "allegedly". This does not cast doubt upon the women who recalled experiences of sexual harassment; it highlights the reality that these events have not been entered as evidence in a court of law ... yet.