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Scott's DiaTribes: Interview with Cathy MacLellan, Liberal Nomination Contestant for Waterloo

One of the advantages of going to a LPC(O) Conference is you sometimes unexpectedly meet candidates or nomination contestants. That was the case this past weekend in London when through an acquaintance, I met Cathy MacLellan, who is a nomination contestant in the riding of Waterloo, a new riding created by Elections Canada due to electoral redistribution. She was aware of my blog and past interviews it seems, so I asked if she’d like to participate in one. to which she agreed to. This is a riding that is being vigourously contested by several Liberal candidates or would-be candidatures, so (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Elizabeth May Defends Jian Ghomeshi Amid Allegations Of Violence Against Women

Richard Hughes-Politically Speaking

The CBC fired Jian Ghomeshi and now they are facing a 55 million dollar lawsuit for defamation and breaking confidences.

This may rank as the bonehead mover of the decade for the CBC, who have also had problems with Don Cherry in the past.

I have not been able to come up with anything that resembles evidence or even identifiable sources of the complaints. It is very difficult to fully land on this until evidence is made available.

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May

Until then the CBC Brain Trust are in for a very rough ride stemming (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Ottawa attack, Municipal Election Day, LPCO weekend

That title pretty well sums up my post today. In order of title:

I’ve waited for a few days before deciding to comment on the Ottawa attack where a shooter killed an unarmed Canadian solider and then stormed Parliament, wounding a security officer before he himself was killed by the Seargant-At-Arms, Kevin Vickers (whose 2 minute standing ovation in Parliament still gets my throat in a lump – someone needs to sponsor the “Kevin Vickers gets free drinks in bars for the rest of his life” act). Obviously, this was a heinous act, and I think Parliament needs to strengthen (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: CKNW-Former BC Premier calls for a frank discussion of Canadian values

Former BC NDP Premier Ujjal Dosanjh

A former BC Premier says Wednesday’s terror attack in Ottawa is another sign of Canada losing the war on values.

Ujjal Dosanjh says it is time to forget being politically correct and have a frank discussion about our youth being radicalized.

“I think it has start in our schools. It has to start with every political and public leader being conscious of these issues and not pandering for votes and not being politically correct and I think that we need to speak to our children at home and we need to speak to our (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Blog interview with LPC contestant Mary Pynenburg – Vancouver Kingsway

I’ve had a brief sojourn from the blog as I’ve been dealing with personal matters, as well as the fact I’ve not had some of my folks who agreed to do interviews get back to me, but finally we have one today, and it comes from Mary Pynenburg, Liberal nomination contestant for the riding of Vancouver-Kingsway. Mary is the current President of the National Women’s Liberal Commission. I’d like to thank her for her participation in this interview. —–

For those who don’t know, can you tell us why you decided to run for the nomination?

I am trained as (Read more…)

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: The mote and the beam

“Hide witch hide, the good folks come to burn thee; Their keen enjoyment hid behind a Gothic mask of duty.” Jefferson Starship: Mau Mau (Blows Against the Empire, 1970) I was thinking about those lines recently. They seemed appropriate given the events in town since last spring. I was also thinking about what Gord Hume […]

Canadian Dimension: No Thanks Stephen Harper

Photo by Remy Steinegger .

No thanks for your neoliberal repressive policies.

No thanks for your ignorant and inhumane “get tough on crime” laws that will build 2700 more overcrowded, violent cells, 5 more ‘medium security’ prisons when national crime rates have gone down during the last 10 years.

No thanks for your racist, xenophobic, mean-spirited immigration laws that criminalize economic and political refugees including children that unjustly deny refugees essential medical treatment and health care.

No thanks for your genocidal policies that perpetuate Canada’s 500-year war of systemic poverty, starvation, diabetes, drug addiction and death suffered by the First Nations, (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Politics, Hockey, Fall Sitting at the BC Legislature and Local Elections-Game on!

Richard Hughes-Political Blogger

We are moving into autumn, our glorious climate change driven summer is wrapping up even though our confused tomato plants refuse to stop providing even more ripe tomatoes.

Last night our beloved Vancouver Canucks warmed our hockey deprived souls with a win in the season opener against the Calgary Flames at the Saddledome.

BC NDP Leader John Horgan is determined even as he is smiling.

Our BC Legislature has been a scene of activity featuring accusations and highly partisan posturing in a rare fall legislative session is in gear. NDP’s new leader John Horgan finally has the (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Ten Questions about the Harper Government’s embrace of war with ISIS-ISIL-IS

Ready, Aye, Ready! Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird whips up the War Party in the House of Commons. Below: Stephen Harper, the prime minister, and Edmonton Centre MP Laurie Hawn.

Stephen Harper, John Baird, Laurie Hawn and the rest of the boys yesterday finally got the war in Iraq they’ve been pining for since 2003.

“We should have been there shoulder to shoulder with our allies,” Prime Minister Harper, who was still the leader of the opposition, complained back in April 2003. At the time, the United States had just invaded Iraq to punish it for having nothing to do (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: You can support the troops, but oppose sending them off to combat.

Putting aside the vote to authorize CF-18’s to fly combat missions to Iraq to try and stop ISIS (which has utterly failed to slow them or stop them so far by the way), I’ve seen the Conservative Party and some media try to claim you can’t say you support the troops but reject authorizing the combat mission.

You know who also said that? The Republican Party’s people in government when US troops were over in Iraq getting involved in a quagmire and the Democratic Party rightly said it was time to get them out of there and bring them home. (Read more…)

wmtc: thank you, thomas mulcair and the new democrats: thank you for saying no to war

Today I feel so much better about living in Canada. Once again, we have a political party that says no to war. A political party that says no to letting the US dictate Canadian foreign policy. I now feel much better about voting NDP in the next federal election… which can’t come soon enough!

It’s a shrewd political move on the part of Thomas Mulcair, polarizing the field with the Liberals and Conservatives on one side and the New Democrats on the other. I have no doubt it’s politically motivated, but why should I care about motives, when the end (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: The Postmedia-Quebecor deal: Welcome to newspaper hell, where the lowest common denominator will prevail

An unreconstituted Toronto Sun front page. Newspaper hell? Turns out it’s not quite as bad as we imagined it would be, except for the few unfortunates who still work in what’s left of the industry. Below: Tom Kent, who headed the 1981 Royal Commission on Newspapers, which was ignored when it was written and is still ignored.

If you want proof the Canadian newspaper business is on its last legs, look no further than yesterday’s announcement Postmedia Network Canada Corp. is about to take over Quebecor Media Inc.’s 175 English-language newspapers and a few other assets, including the five (Read more…)

wmtc: steve mahoney for mayor of mississauga

We’re having a historic election here in Mississauga: it will be the first time in the city’s existence that Hazel McCallion is not running, the first mayor other than McCallion that Mississauga has ever had. Twelve candidates are on the ballot, but the race comes down to two people: Steve Mahoney and Bonnie Crombie.

Crombie tries to project an image as a business person who “gets things done,” but running a city like a business is a failing proposition. Businesses are designed for profit. Transit, education, libraries, sanitation, daycare, parks, recreation centres, and other public services don’t generate profit. (Read more…)

Progressive Proselytizing: Why Canada is going to war in Iraq: From Harper’s Mouth

I recently wrote a post about the motivations for middle powers like Canada to join international coalitions for wars such as the recent war in Iraq.

Now that we have seen Harper official justification for the war to Parliament, it is worth noting how closely what I said tacked with what Harper himself said. We don’t have to do some form of loose guesswork as we do with, say, Russia where the motivations of the leadership is wildly different from their public statements. Here, Harper is proudly and publicly proclaiming more or less what I suggested.

Most of the speech (Read more…)

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…)

Canadian Dimension: Harper ramps up his war on independent thought

Photo from Public Domain

In the conservative quest to shape public debate in recent years, no tool has proved more useful than the think tank. Nobody understood this better than the director of the ultra-right wing U.S.-based ATLAS Foundation, who once stated that his mission was “to litter the world with free-market think tanks.”

Mission accomplished. Certainly the Canadian landscape is cluttered with right-wing think tanks — the Fraser Institute, the C.D. Howe Institute, the Montreal Economic Institute, the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, the Frontier Institute, just to name a few — all well-funded by (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…)