Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Lib Bloggers come out swinging against the NDP

Over the past few weeks, I've seen numerous Liberal bloggers attacking the NDP and Jack Layton. The attacks have seemed very harsh and personal. I've been keeping up with the news and I know the facts around the party positions on the gun registry. And, I see that the level and number of the attacks don't seem to be supported by the facts around the issue.

The NDP must be doing something right - like trying to improve the gun registry instead of killing it - or voting as their constituents wish.

A lot of Liberal bloggers have been taking the NDP and Jack Layton to task for their stance on the gun registry. The general stance of Jack and the NDP is supportive of the registry. The Liberal bloggers seem oblivious to the NDP's aim to introduce legislation to fix the registry so that citizens, and opposition MPs opposed to it, can find it more reasonable and thus support the registry.

These Liberal bloggers are being very hypocritical when they say that - oh, here goes the NDP supporting the Conservatives. They forget who has been voting or abstaining in order to prop up the Conservatives since Harper's bunch first became the government - the Liberals. The Liberals have undeniably given the Conservatives a virtual majority government all this time - voting for or abstaining from voting on Conservative bills that the Liberals themselves didn't like.

The NDP allows free votes on private members bills. They always have. This allows MPs to vote for what their constituents want and with their conscience. The NDP generally votes as a whole with their conscience on most issues. The gun registry, as is, is opposed by most people in rural areas for some good reasons. And NDP MPs represent 12 of these rural ridings. So, unless the registry is improved, as the NDP proposes, these MPs will most likely vote to repeal the registry.

Now, just imagine if the Liberal members of parliament actually voted as their constituents wanted them to and with their conscience - we would have got rid of the Conservative government years ago. Instead, the Liberals went against the wishes of their constituents and their conscience time and again for many votes over many years, and, as a result, Canada continues to suffer under a Conservative Harper government. The Liberals have been punished by their constituents and have dropped and stagnated in the polls (losing a significant number of seats last election, and not looking good if an election were held today). There are many people who used to vote Liberal who have decided to not vote for them next time.

Do the Liberals think that by attacking the NDP that they will win more seats in NDP ridings? Unlikely. And especially unlikely in those rural NDP ridings. This seems a poor strategy for a party that has lost most of the seats it has lost to the Conservatives.

The Liberals can attack the NDP all it wants on the gun registry issue but it won't get them anywhere because people who may have supported the Liberals, or have sometimes thought they might support the Liberals, won't vote for a party that has let down its constituents the way this Liberal party has on numerous issues for years.

See also:
Accidental Deliberations - On Appeals To Conscience

Why do Lib bloggers hold democracy in such contempt?

The NDP split - democracy as it should be

How Fox North became Harper's priority

How Fox North became Harper's priority | rabble.ca

The Globe and Mail's Jeffrey Simpson doubts Fox News North is going
to "make or break or even influence the shape of Canadian politics,
whatever the ideological fervour of Kory Teneycke" but author and
Toronto Star columnist Linda McQuaig disagrees.

"There's been a tendency in the Canadian media to dismiss the threat
of a Fox News transplant on the grounds Canadians wouldn't fall for that
sort of nasty, right-wing extremism," she writes. "But that comforting
notion may be naïve." Most people don't have time to follow politics in
detail, she continues. "If they hear constant sound bites suggesting
global warming is a hoax or public health care just doesn't work, after a
while the message starts to seem believable."

She points out the media already blasts Canadians with a steady
chorus of right-wing ideas. "A Fox-style network here - if Harper gets
his way - would turn that into a deafening cacophony."

It all makes soldiers with guns on Canada's streets more plausible with every passing day.

See also:
Stop Harper's Hate Media Channel - Sign The Petition

The Liberal Party, struggling for any gain in the polls, urge their bloggers to attack the NDP

Buckdog: Reasons Why The Liberal Party Of Canada Has Instructed Its Bloggers To Go Hard Against Layton - Liberal Lemmings 2.0
Idiotically, the boo-bah's who run Liberal Inc.
have decided that it is wise at this time to make another foray into
New Democrat territory. Hence we see a fairly convoluted attempt to pin
the possible demise of the gun registry onto Jack Layton.

strategists desperately hope to accomplish two goals with this. First
is to leave the impression that Iggy is a strong leader, ready willing
and able to whip his 8 MP's who previously voted to kill the Registry.
Because it has never been the policy of the NDP to whip their Caucus on
private member's bills, the Libs are trying to leave the impression that
Layton is not as strong a leader as Iggy. So, with Layton consistently
getting favourable ratings in the polls, the Lib brain trust feels that
they must do something to pull him down and boost the Igster up.

second goal of the current Liberal strategy is to try and win back some
of the urban support that has leaked away to Layton since 2006. Rather
than attack Harper (whom they fear), Liberals have decided to try and
pound on the NDP. It is humorous to watch and will bear few, if any
electoral results.

In fact, Liberal anxiety to climb back into
the government benches may even see Iggy force an election this fall.
Any move to do so will be as disastrous as last fall's attempt.

The Liberal Party of Canada may be preparing to launch 'Liberal Lemmings version 2.0 in the not too distant future! Stay tuned!

Mere minutes after publishing this post, the Globe & Mail put out a news item where Iggy announces that he wants a Federal Election this fall!!! .... told 'ya!!

In the interview today with the Globe & Mail, Ignatieff said "We are willing to make parliament work." If this was true, then they would support improving the gun registry now, instead of wanting to wait until they win an election (which is unlikely).

Israeli News Updates - Lashes for singing, execution of 13 year old girl, rabbi calls for death of all Palestinians

The Disaffected Lib: A 13-Year Old Girl - Shot 17 Times - Of Course He's Not Guilty, She Was Palestinian, The Shooter an Israeli Army Captain
An Israeli army captain gunned down an innocent 13 year old school girl who was not threatening anyone (including confirmation-of-kill execution shots at close range).

Abbas, Palestinians should die: Israeli rabbi
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – An influential Israeli rabbi has said God should
strike the Palestinians and their leader with a plague, calling for
their death in a fiery sermon.

'Sinner' singer given 39 lashes by rabbis
A singer who performed in front of a “mixed audience” of men and women was
lashed 39 times to make him “repent,” after a ruling by a self-described
rabbinic court on Wednesday.

Monday, 30 August 2010

Stop Harper's hate media channel - sign the petition

Canada: no taxes to fund hate
Prime Minister Harper is trying to push American-style hate media onto our airwaves, and make us all pay for it.

His plan is to create a "Fox News North" to mimic the kind of hate-filled propaganda with which Fox News has poisoned U.S. politics. The channel will be run by Harper’s former top aide and will be funded with money from our TV license fees!

One man stands in the way of this nightmare -- the Chairman of
Canada's Radio and Telecommunications Commission Konrad von
Finckenstein. He's rejected the plan as a violation of CRTC policies, so
now Harper is trying to force him out. Let's urgently send a massive wave of public support to von Finckenstein.

See also:
Globe and Mail: Is Stephen Harper set to move against the CRTC?

And, from AVAAZ:

Dear friends,

Prime Minister Harper is trying to push American-style hate media onto our airwaves, and make us all pay for it.

His plan is to create a "Fox News North" to mimic the kind of hate-filled propaganda with which Fox News has poisoned U.S. politics. The channel will be run by Harper’s former top aide and will be funded with money from our TV license fees!

One man stands in the way of this nightmare -- the Chairman of Canada's Radio and Telecommunications Commission Konrad von Finckenstein. He's rejected the plan as a violation of CRTC policies, so now Harper is trying to force him out. Let's urgently send a massive wave of public support to von Finckenstein, with 100,000 Canadians encouraging him to keep standing up for Canada, and standing firm against Harper's pressure. Sign the petition below and forward this email to everyone -- we'll publish full page ads in Canadian papers when we reach 100,000:


Harper hatched his scheme in a secret lunch last year with media-mogul Rupert Murdoch, the owner of Fox News. Harper's aide Kory Teneycke, who will lead "Fox News North" also came to the lunch.

Fox News fuels hate. While claiming to be “fair” and “balanced”, it allows hysterical anchors like Glenn Beck to compare Obama to "Lucifer" and "Hitler" and bully 11 year-old girls. Bill O’Reilly has threatened to boycott Canada, and Anne Coulter says Canada is “lucky the US allows it to exist on the same continent.” The network has calculatingly spawned the tea party movement in the US, a mobilisation of the fringe right which threatens violence upon its opponents and wears guns to political rallies. Even more sinister, every bit of content is calculated to appear 'unbiased' while being deeply manipulative. Objectivity is hard for any journalist, but there is a massive difference between those who try, and those who serve another agenda. Perhaps most tellingly, Fox News regularly labels Canada "communist" and "a country suffering under public health care".

This is a fight for the soul of Canadian democracy. Our media is not perfect, but a ‘news’ network that slavishly serves a radical political agenda and a particular political leader threatens the fabric of our democratic society. In Canadian media, there is no room for manipulation through fear, hatred, deceit and demonisation.

This is Harper's long term strategy to make radical conservatism the political centre in Canada, tearing down the country we love to make us look like the U.S. But first, Harper needs to convince von Finckenstein to step down before the end of his term in 2012. Insiders say he’s already been offered some pretty fancy jobs including an ambassador’s post in Chile. But we can stand up and urge him to stay right where he is -- protecting Canadians from biased news coverage and hateful pundits. Let's raise a massive outcry for Konrad von Finckenstein. Tell him to stand strong, and stay in his job:


Harper is attacking Canada’s tradition of fairness and commitment to democracy. He is trying to bully through the protections we have against exactly the kind of government propaganda that is Fox News North. We can answer by exercising our collective voice and showing him and his cronies that Canadians won’t be forced to accept American hate media.

In solidarity,

Ricken, Emma, Iain, and the rest of the Avaaz team


Globe and Mail, “Is Harper set to move against the CRTC?”:

CBC, “The absolute last thing this country needs”:

Globe and Mail, CRTC refuses Sun TV's bid for preferred status on dial:

The Star, “Harper’s foxy luncheon”:

Mediaite, “Canada and Ann Coulter: a volatile relationship”:

Media Matters, “Glenn Beck compares Obama to Lucifer”:

Media Matters, “Glenn Beck smears Obama’s 11 year old daughter”:

The Examiner: “Bill O’Reilly again confuses facts about Canadian health care system”:

Jack Layton and the NDP to introduce legislation to improve the gun registry

Gun Registry: Building Bridges | NDP
The NDP have stated today, that they will vote against bill C-391 if it stands un-improved. (Bill C-391 is a Conservative private members bill to "repeal the portion of the requirement requiring the registration of
non-restricted firearms, but would have continued the registration
requirement for licensed gun owners"
And, the NDP will introduce legislation to improve the gun registry to make it less of a hassle for rural gun owners, and to make it a better tool against crime in urban areas.
Read the top link for the full statement from Jack Layton.

Friday, 27 August 2010

Danny Williams catches the National Post lying and sets them straight

Web Talk - Newfoundland and Labrador: Williams Sets Record Straight at the National Post
As soon as the news hit the wires that the federal government had
settled a NAFTA challenge from Abitib-Bowater over the expropriation of
the assets in Newfoundland and Labrador pundits for the so called
"national papers" coudn't wait to take another shot at NL and Danny
Williams (or as they often refer to him, Danny Chavez, Village Idiot, or
some other less than flattering term).

Today Premier Williams decided to set the record straight at the National Post.

Click the link above to read it.

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Jack Layton endorses Joe Pantalone for Mayor

Jack Layton Endorses Joe Pantalone « MayorJoe.ca
Of all the candidates running, Joe is the only one with a proper and realistic vision for the city. He is also the most experienced with this city's council and he is a consensus builder. I'll be voting for Joe on election day.

Toronto Star: Pantalone, the 'one choice' for mayor, Layton says
Layton said that, while serving alongside Pantalone on Metro and Toronto councils, and in more recent years, he has seen him take on project after project and finish them on-budget and on-time.

Rob Ford would be a disaster as Toronto mayor

Rob Ford would be a disaster as Toronto mayor - thestar.com
Here is an opinion piece from April 2010 that lists some of Ford's escapades/public comments.

He is a solitary voice on council, with a history of screaming tirades.
He's bombastic. He's often a buffoon. That style may work for a city
councillor seeking cheap headlines, but it would be fatal for a mayor,
who must be a consensus builder as well as a forceful leader.

To assess how Ford would be as mayor, it's important to look back at his history.

In 2002, Ford called fellow Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti, who is
also running for mayor, "a scammer" and "Gino-boy" in reference to his
Italian heritage.

In 2003, he wanted Toronto declared a "refugee-free zone" and
called council's decision to ban the use of pesticides a sign of
"dictatorship." The following year he said the city's bylaw to protect
trees "is communism, if you ask me."

In 2005, he called Councillor Gloria Lindsay Luby a "waste of
skin." He once suggested that "it's their own fault" if cyclists are
killed in traffic accidents.

In 2006, he was ejected from the Air Canada Centre for being drunk
and verbally abusing fans at a Maple Leafs game, calling them "communist
bastards." Later, Ford denied he was even at the game, but subsequently
admitted he lied, saying "I'm going through a few personal problems."

Also in 2006, he fought against a $1.5 million AIDs prevention
program, claiming he didn't understand why more women were becoming AIDS
patients, adding "Maybe they're sleeping with bisexual men."

In 2008, he claimed "Oriental people work like dogs... They're
slowly taking over." He later said he meant it as a compliment, but
apologized anyway. Also that year, he was arrested and charged with
assault and threatening death, but the charges were later dropped.

For his part, Ford said last week on John Oakley's radio show when
he announced his candidacy that he realizes he's "not in opposition
anymore. I have to be a leader."

Given his record, this is not the "leader" that Toronto needs.

The Conservatives and the Long Gun Registry

The RCMP released a report a report on the long gun registry back in May 2010, which is said to show it in a very positive light. The Conservative government has delayed the release of this since May, claiming that it is being translated into French. It is the belief of a number of people that the Conservatives are stalling and don't want this released before the House of Commons vote on the bill to scrap the registry.
Layton demands Conservatives stop stalling and release firearms report | NDP

Conservatives sitting on gun registry report

Also of note was the removal of RCMP Chief Superintendent Marty Cheliak, who was the director-general of the RCMP's Canadian Firearms Program. Cheliak was a staunch supporter of the gun registry. He was about to speak at the 2010 conference of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police. Conservatives claim he as removed because he was not bilingual enough for his job.
Removal of firearms watchdog has critics screaming 'censorship'.

Harper's Conservatives = Soft On Crime

On Monday, Aug. 23, 2010, the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police voted unanimously in support of the federal long-gun registry.
Police chiefs plan last-ditch campaign to save long-gun registry

I believe that the long-gun registry serves a very useful purpose aiding police in fighting crime involving guns. For those who oppose the registry, their main sticking point is the registration process and cost to gun owners. Since the registry is so very useful, lets improve the registration process instead of scrapping the registry altogether. The Conservatives, and some Liberal and NDP backbenchers currently intend to vote to scrap the registry. Opposition party members opposed to the registry mainly hold their stance due to pressure from their constituents. But, if the RCMP report is released before the vote, then some of these opposition members and their constituents might be swayed to support the registry instead (thus defeating the bill to scrap the registry). You would think that with the Conservatives seeming so big on a law and order agenda, that they would support the long-gun registry. But, since rural long-gun owners constitute a core of their supporters, they are determined to kill the registry.

See also:
CBC: Long-gun registry efficient: RCMP report

NDP to propose long-gun registry changes

Layton calls for an end to gun registry divisiveness

G20 Toronto: Totalitarian Police State

Walkom: The G20 protests and judicial farce - thestar.com
"As this week’s judicial farce demonstrates, the people in charge of
public security during that raucous weekend went off the rails. They
acted as if potential dissent were a crime."

See also:
G20 charges dropped at mass hearing

And yes, Bubble Girl's charges were dropped:

What's the matter with Torontonians that they would vote for Ford?

Mallick: Rob Ford as mayor? Are we nuts? - thestar.com
"Three Ford fans interviewed by the Star recently listed what
they hated, presumably in tandem with Ford: lending money to GM and
Chrysler, the HST, unions and free-spending politicians. But they
thought Ford was the kind of guy they could go fishing with, his legal
and personal failings apparently irrelevant."

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Harper's Canadian government - a real change for the worse - Amnesty International

Canada unpredictable on human rights says new Amnesty boss - thestar.com
“There’s a feeling there’s a real change for the worse in terms of the human rights approach of the Canadian government,”

G20 Toronto: another late call for an inquiry

Growing case for G20 probe - thestar.com
Yes, a FEDERAL inquiry is needed. One that has the power to subpoena. One that will get to the bottom of who really called the shots and allowed the vandalism to happen, and that ordered the police to illegally arrest and detain hundreds of innocent people. This Toronto Star article sort of calls for that, but not quite.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Harper government prefers veterans dead instead of wounded.

Veterans wanted dead, not alive, ombudsman charges - thestar.com
And you thought you were supporting the troops by supporting the Conservative government ...
“I was told … that it is in the government’s best interests to have soldiers killed overseas rather than wounded because the liability is shorter term,” Stogran said.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

US Military Judge ≠ Reason

US Judge OKs confession extracted by threatening suspect with rape | Raw Story

In one of the first military commissions held under the Obama
administration, a US military judge has ruled that confessions obtained
by threatening the subject with rape are admissible in court.

case involves Omar Ahmed Khadr, a citizen of Canada who was apprehended
in Afghanistan when he was 15 years old and has remained in Guantanamo
Bay for the last seven years awaiting trial for terrorism and war


Where do they get these judges?

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Harper' Plans - following in the footsteps of Mike Harris and George W. Bush

Siddiqui: Harper’s Ottawa becomes Republican la-la land - thestar.com

Spending lavishly on skewed priorities, from tax breaks for the rich to ordering big-ticket defence toys, has been a Republican/Conservative specialty. That’s how Brian Mulroney and Ronald Reagan turned huge surpluses into record deficits. So did Mike Harris and George W. Bush.

Harper is following in their footsteps. He also shares Harris’s mean streak and some of the former premier’s bullying cabinet colleagues (Jim Flaherty, Tony Clement and John Baird), as well as chief of staff (Guy Giorno). Like Harris, Harper is cutting social programs and targeting employment equity, which would no doubt entail demonizing the poor as well as minorities.

If you thought Harris wreaked devastation on Ontario, Harper may have bigger plans — and on a national scale.

See Also
Harper's Plan
Insight into Stephen Harper from his 1997 speech