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In This Corner: The Sun will never darken my door again.

A few weeks ago, a nice young man came to my door, offering a three-month subscription to the Edmonton Sun for $30. I know the Sun essentially sucks, but I figured, hey, $30 for three months of a newspaper. What’s the harm?

After about a week, I contemplated cancelling my subscription and getting a refund. After three months of having this daily right-wing screed darkening my door, I can tell you without contradiction that I will never, ever spend so much as a dime on the Edmonton Sun again. And this comes from a lifelong newspaper reader, someone who loves (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Sun Media – not its squalid commentator Ezra Levant – is the problem

Ezra Levant, on the job with his Sun News microphone. Mr. Levant is not the problem. Sun Media is the problem. Below: Justin Trudeau, Bernie Farber, and Brian Mulroney.

Ezra Levant is a squalid nuisance, barely worth contemplating.

Sun Media is the problem.

On Monday, Sun Media apologized for Mr. Levant’s repellent and sexually obsessive hysterics about Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau’s parents, one dead and the other an elderly grandmother and thus neither in a position to defend themselves.

This only happened, of course, because Mr. Trudeau threatened no longer to talk to legitimate Sun Media journalists, of which we (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Women in Politics Brantford Conference Recap (with pictures)

On Friday, I had the privilege of being an accredited blogger/observer at a Women In Politics Conference in Brantford. Its goal was aimed at encouraging young women to run for office – whether that was federal, provincial or municipal. The idea behind this was started by a Grade 12 high school student named Gabrielle Cotton, who decided after talking with a local counsellor that something like this conference was needed to try and spur interest among young women, and she went ahead with some help to organize it (you’ll find the initial story about the planning behind this conference at (Read more…)

Progressive Proselytizing: Harper’s small but important lie on Iraq

Harper got caught in a lie important enough that the US Secretary of Defence’s office took the somewhat rare move of embarrassing Harper by telling everyone it was indeed a lie.

Namely, as reported by Global News,  Harper made something of a big show that the US was asking for Canadian help in the newest war in Iraq. Turns out, it was the other way around, where Harper asked the Americans if Canada could help out and the document Harper was referring to was a response to this.

Now, does it really matter who asked whom first? At the end (Read more…)

wmtc: do canadians support a war against isis? not so much.

When the US invaded Iraq in 2003, Canadians protested in huge numbers, adding their voices to the unprecedented global outcry against the “pre-emptive” war. It was that massive public support – almost statistical unanimity – that allowed Jean Chretien to keep Canadian Forces out of the war. Even Stephen Harper, who as Opposition Leader was as gung-ho as any Connecticut Cowboy, has since admitted that the war was “absolutely an error“. What’s more, even most USians now agree that other countries, such as Canada, were right to not support the invasion.

Now, we’re told, it’s different. ISIS, (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Brian Gallant has a thin resume? Stephen Harper hasn’t held a real job since he quit the mailroom in ’79 or whenever!

New Brunswick Premier-designate Brian Gallant, grabbed from his campaign website. Below: Cranky old National Post opinion thingy Kelly McParland, age undetermined; Justin Trudeau, 42, getting off an airplane with some old guy, 62; Opposition Leader Thomas Mulcair, 59.

As the present now will later be past

The order is rapidly fadin’

And the first one now will later be last

For the times they are a-changin’ …

— Bob Dylan (age 73)

If anyone has the right to be bitter about bright young Liberal leaders with good looks, great hair and supposedly thin resumes like those of New Brunswick (Read more…)

wmtc: "bogus" refugees and queue-jumping: stephen harper’s campaign against a compassionate canada

Political language — and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists — is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.

George Orwell, “Politics and the English Language,” 1946

Unpacking how this happens, and in how many ways, is our life’s work. It’s a topic that must be repeatedly trotted out against as a bulwark against the powerful forces that shape our world.

Right now the War Resisters Support Campaign is facing a huge crisis. A spate of war resisters have received (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Hat-tip to cousin Dawn Danko running for School Board Trustee in Hamilton Ward 7

I don’t delve a lot into municipal politics, and I wouldn’t usually have a reason to delve into school board trustee politics (except perhaps watching with interest as Michael Ford, nephew of Rob, tries to use that as his springboard), and you wouldn’t think I’d have a specific interest in Hamilton school board trustee politics, but there are exceptions, particularly when there’s a relative of mine running.

I wanted to highlight to those folks who may be reading this in Hamilton and specifically Ward 7 that my cousin (in-law) Dawn Danko is running for school board trustee there. She has (Read more…)

wmtc: will canada become a country continually at war? or, stephen harper gets his wish in iraq

I had been living in Canada but a few short months when Stephen Harper, as leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, formed his first minority government. At the time, this blog hosted an active and lively ongoing discussion about Canadian culture and politics, and my personal acculturation. I did not like Harper or his Conservatives, but I balked at what I saw as hyperbole from certain progressive people: Harper will turn Canada into the United States. I felt the two countries were different enough to make that particular magic trick impossible.

Now, almost ten years later, at least a (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Rob Anders, Canada’s Worst MP, has been handed his great big hat a second time

Calgary West MP Rob Anders waves farewell from the back of a pickup truck, a type of vehicle that along with firearms was numbered among his most loved things. Below: Nomination victor Martin Shields; Mr. Anders in one of his favourite poses, with a great big pistol, and asleep in the House of Commons.

Leaving so soon, Mr. Anders? Here’s your hat.

Long before Canadians had the Ford Brothers to humiliate them around the globe, there was Rob Anders, the hardy perennial of the Canadian loony right – elected six times over 17 years by the inattentive voters (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: LPCO / OWLC Stuff

So the LPCO had their AGM over the weekend, and I just wanted to say a couple of things about it briefly. Unfortunately, my friend and fellow blogger Jeff Jedras didn’t quite make it in his bid to be the VP Comms for LPCO – Christine Michaud won that position, and congrats to her – but I wanted to congratulate Jeff on his campaign; it takes a lot of courage to put your name out there and then be scrutinized by a lot of people. I hope that his general message he delivered to the LPCO will be still considered (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Interview with Phil Somers, LPC Nomination Candidate Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston

This is another interview I’m posting today that I’ve done with Liberal Party candidates or nomination candidates. Today’s is with Phil Somers, seeking the nomination in Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston (a newly created riding in 2015). I have to applaud Mr. Somers, as he has seen the other interviews I’ve done on here and contacted me, asking if I’d consider interviewing him and went out of his way to provide answers.. so thank you to him for his initiative. ———–

For those who haven’t visited your website yet, can you tell our readers why you’ve decided to run for the nomination?

I have (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Harper / PMO: “The Inuit knew about the Franklin ships? Who knew?”

APTN demonstrates how low a priority First Nations relations are with the Harper government at the moment:

The Franklin expedition ship found by researchers on the Arctic seabed has a detailed and colourful history within Inuit oral tradition, yet the Inuit garnered only one 17-word sentence among the press releases and backgrounders released by the Prime Minister’s Office at the time after Tuesday’s announced discovery…the general public wouldn’t know about the key role Inuit oral history played in the selection of the search area by reading the information posted on the PMO’s website. There, the role of the Inuit in (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Political business in great waters: When they that go down to the sea in ships are up to no good!

Prime Minister and First Lord of the Admiralty Stephen Harper. For all we know, actual Canadian prime ministers do appear in silk stockings and tri-corner hats exactly as illustrated. You know, in private. Below: The unlucky Sir John Franklin.

O Eternal Lord God, who alone rulest the raging of the sea; who has compassed the waters with bounds until day and night come to an end; be pleased to receive into Thy almighty and most gracious protection the persons of us Thy servants, and the Fleet in which we serve. Preserve us from the dangers of the sea, and (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Dispatches from your crazy Uncle Steve: It’s all the fault of the media elite!

“Isn’t that Brian Mulroney talking to some guy … Hey! Isn’t that one-a those Trudeaus?! Mulroney’s just another Trudeau lover! Like the Ottawa media elite!” Yadda-yadda… Below: The real Crazy Uncle Steve, Mr. Mulroney again, Heather Mallick. You can tell she’s a member of the urban Ottawa media elite because she’s wearing pearls!

VICTORIA, B.C.

You may think the Harper Tories are getting ready to do battle with the Liberals under Justin Trudeau (whom former Conservative prime minister Brian Mulroney just called “a potent package”) and the New Democrats under Thomas Mulcair (whom Mr. Mulroney called “the best (Read more…)

Progressive Proselytizing: Olivia Chow loses when the race is about Rob Ford

On paper, the Toronto Mayoral race should be a cakewalk for the NDP’s Olivia Chow. Consider, it is down to two conservatives who will split votes on the right and a single progressive on the left, from a city who has previously had the political makeup to elect NDP candidates like David Miller. Indeed, part of the failure of the left in the 2010 race was because of vote splitting on the left that not only won’t hurt the left, it now hurts the right.  But of course, it isn’t any two conservatives, it is a generic fill-in-the-blank conservative in John (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Progressive Proselytizing: Olivia Chow loses when the race is about Rob Ford

Scott's DiaTribes: Endorsement: Lynne Steele for OWLC President

There will be a new Ontario Women’s Liberal Commission President picked at the LPCO AGM on Sept 12-14. I’ll be brief and I’ll be frank. I’m endorsing Lynne not because I particularly know her (I don’t) but I know a fair # of the folks who are endorsing her, and that in itself is good enough for me.

I also, to be blunt, have heard and read some rather unsettling hanky-panky going on over this particular contest. I can’t publish what I’ve heard, because I don’t have direct evidence, but you see a hint of it here at Lynne’s Facebook (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Interview w/Jennifer Stebbing – Flamborough-Glanbrook

Jennifer Stebbing is currently a Liberal nomination candidate in the riding of Flamborough-Glanbrook (and so far the only nomination candidate for the Liberals in that riding). She was kind enough to take some time out of her schedule to answer these five questions (and answer rather extensively – one of the more detailed replies I’ve gotten since I started doing these a month or so ago). My thanks to her for participating.

—– For those who haven’t visited your website yet, can you tell our readers why you’ve decided to run for the nomination?

I have been fascinated by Canada’s (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: The push-polls prove it again, Canadians hate unions … really, really, really they do! Happy Labour Day

The past is a foreign country: Labour Day in Vancouver, not so long ago. Below: The workers, united, will never be defeated! The goal of union “transparency,” “worker choice,” “right to work” and other Orwellian right-wing buzzwords is to ensure the workers are never united and always defeated. Below that: Stephen Kushner, president of the anti-union Merit Contractors Association.

VICTORIA, B.C.

NOTE TO READERS: Since the Alberta chapter of the Merit Contractors Association, a group of non-union construction companies, seems to have recycled much of its past opinion survey and press release on union “transparency,” I thought I’d recycle (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Interviews galore coming

Hello folks:

Sorry for the delay on new blogposts, but I didn’t feel like regurgitating news you can find elsewhere, such as more polls from multiple pollsters showing good Liberal leads, or the fact Conservatives are bemoaning the fact this is the case and still viewing Justin Trudeau as incarnate evil (read the Paul Wells story at Macleans to see what I mean by that comment). I find the downtime between House of Commons sittings to be hard to write stuff.

In the meantime, I’ll just briefly mention part of the delay is I’ve sent out a ton of interview (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Why Edmonton Strathcona electors should vote NDP, as (not exactly) explained by Liberal MP Chrystia Freeland

Toronto Spadina MP Chrystia Freeland, a Liberal, after speaking at the University of Alberta Faculty Club last week. Below: Eleanor Olszewski, nominated Liberal candidate in the federal Edmonton Strathcona riding; Linda Duncan, NDP MP for Edmonton Strathcona.

Last Wednesday night, during an engaging talk at the University of Alberta Faculty Club, Chrystia Freeland pretty clearly laid out the arguments for why voters in Edmonton Strathcona should re-elect New Democrat Linda Duncan in the next federal election.

The Toronto MP, who is one of the bright lights of Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau’s caucus, wasn’t aiming to make that point, of course. (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Congrats to Danielle Takacs, new LPC candidate for Brantford-Brant

I had the great privilege and honour to be in Brantford last evening for the nomination of my good friend Danielle Takacs; she is now the Liberal candidate for the riding of Brantford-Brant. My fellow blogger Jeff Jedras has also done a blogpost on Danielle which he listed all of her extensive accomplishments she has already done and still a part of, so I won’t go into that list – you may read them at your leisure over at his site. Rather, I’ll mention that it was an amazing night, with an overflow crowd of 100 – I’ll admit, we (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: If LPC anticipates early election call, let’s get candidates nominated sooner, not later

The story in the Star yesterday – the Liberals are preparing for Harper to call an early Spring election, much earlier then he needs to:

Trudeau told reporters the Liberals are preparing for the possibility that Prime Minister Stephen Harper may call an election much earlier than October 2015, the legislated date for the next federal vote.“Mr. Harper has not once followed his own fixed-election-date law in the setting of elections, so I think it’s only prudent to try and make sure that we’re going to be ready,” Trudeau told reporters.

I agree with that sentiment, and that is (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Justin Trudeau in Edmonton: dismiss this guy as a flake or a lightweight at your peril

Liberal Party of Canada Leader Justin Trudeau energized a crowd of Liberals and the curious last night in Edmonton. Below: His father, Pierre Trudeau, circa 1968; the chip off the old block.

I’m pretty sure it was in the spring of 1968 that I heard Pierre Trudeau speak in Victoria’s Beacon Hill Park. I think it was March ’68, as a matter of fact, right before the convention that made him leader of the Liberal Party and prime minister of Canada.

I can tell you this for sure, it was a beautiful day, the sun was warm, there was a (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Interview with Karen McCrimmon, LPC nomination contestant Kanata-Carleton

Following up on yesterday’s interview with David Graham, today we have an interview conducted with Karen McCrimmon, Liberal Party nomination hopeful in the riding of Kanata-Carleton. My thanks to Karen for taking time out of her busy schedule to do this interview with me. ———– 1. What made you decide you wanted to run to be the official candidate for the Liberals in your riding of Kanata-Carleton?

I first ran for the Liberals in the 2011 Federal election in the riding of Carleton-Mississippi Mills. I had been very disheartened with the direction that Canada was taking under the Harper government. (Read more…)