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Scripturient: Kellie Leitch’s politics of division

They’re not like us. They’re not our religion. They’re not our colour. They don’t speak our language. They don’t dress like us. They don’t eat like us. They don’t drive like us, shop like us, read like us, walk like us. We need to control them. Deport them. Jail them. Make them convert. Make them . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Kellie Leitch’s politics of division

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Action vs. Action Plans #GivePollutionAChance

The Liberals would like to tell you that they’ve spent a year making Real Change (TM) in Canada, since being elected in October, 2015. Undeniably, Canada has some notable differences and improvements since Harper was booted. Still, there are promised changes, not hard to make, that are forever being dangled like carrots, potentially left to . . . → Read More: Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Action vs. Action Plans #GivePollutionAChance

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: A Tax on Everything Is Coming

Run for the hills!

.@CNN #PriceOnCarbon article: "because we've been so slow to act on this crisis, bold action is now required" https://t.co/PvV1Y1oFdM

— Pembina Institute (@Pembina) October 5, 2016

I realize several people who I’m friends with, think Premier Wall is great for Saskatchewan. I’ve never held a high opinion of . . . → Read More: Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: A Tax on Everything Is Coming

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: #ERRE Electoral Reform Committee in Regina

First Expert guests I watched presenting to the committee were unable to understand French question fired at them because they were not equipped with translation headphones. Nathan Cullen leaped up and got the headsets for them. CLC points out they are a political org and that is why they are interested in this subject of […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: #ERRE Electoral Reform Committee in Regina

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Bottom Of the Barrel Brad

What’s with Saskatchewan generating unkind Conservative politicians named Brad? Brad “Bumpkin” “Two Finger” Trost threw together some stock images into a meme against people in love being married. Something inadvertantly hilarious about would-be CPC leader Brad Trost using 2 stiff fingers to oppose gay marriage pic.twitter.com/Yuch53fccQ — Robyn Urback (@RobynUrback) September 15, 2016 Dear Brad […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Bottom Of the Barrel Brad

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: #RoboCon: Revisiting the 2008 Election Fraud

In light of this news from Elizabeth May, it may be worth re-reading these blog entries from 2012 and 2009. Duffy’s trial raised some damning information about the first infamous robocalls used to steal an election for the Conservatives in B.C. And read Alison’s more recent recap. I certainly think that Duffy’s testimony should be […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: #RoboCon: Revisiting the 2008 Election Fraud

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Double Standards

Eeeevil Lefties: ‘This is a disaster. We should aim to prevent future disasters. What went so wrong?’ Rawlco: “it will be positive and it will go a long way to mitigating Alberta’s downturn.” He’s a story about how people survived north of the Fort Mac wildfire. 39. They can safely evacuate 25,000 people from a […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Double Standards

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Head In The Tarsand

When an out of control fire roars toward you, it’s totally fine to stick your head (and the rest of you) into the sand, in a fireproof shelter preferably. After the fire passes, you’ve got to come out and ask what the heck happened, and why. Facebook has been bustling with people talking about the […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Head In The Tarsand

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: #Duffy Not Faulted For Listening To Harper

3 years ago, I explained what was happening with the Duffy trial. Today it came to a close. It's about the credibility of Duffy vs. the credibility of the Harper PMO. One of them will take a big hit today. — Lawrence Martin (@LMartinOttawa) April 21, 2016 whatever else to think about #duffy verdict, good […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: #Duffy Not Faulted For Listening To Harper

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: A Fine Bigger Than Most Crimes – #PanamaPapers

Canada’s rich and powerful do not fear the media, and they do not have their names in the newspapers (some owned by foreign investment funds) when fined more than a million dollars for a crime much larger than that. FINTRAC won't name bank fined $1.1 million for suspicious transactions?! We are still a banana republic. […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: A Fine Bigger Than Most Crimes – #PanamaPapers

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: News Summary

Belgium attacked, Rob Ford dies, Budget release, and atmosphere pollutants at dangerous levels. What's the biggest story? #climatechange — Saskboy (@saskboy) March 22, 2016 Goodbye Rob Ford. You left a mark on Canada’s reputation, and now you’re free to go swim with the sharks in the sky. Here’s my favourite Ford video, which sums up […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: News Summary

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Wall Can’t Cut Pollution? Cut the Crap.

WEYBURN, Sask. – Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall says a federal government cannot tax a provincial government and that might play a role in any potential national carbon tax. Wall says he might be able to make the case that Ottawa can’t impose a carbon tax on SaskPower because it’s a Crown corporation. OK, let’s play […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Wall Can’t Cut Pollution? Cut the Crap.

Alberta Politics: B.C. politics as seen from Alberta: Christy Clark’s re-election strategy exposed

PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant-Governor Judith Guichon reads the notorious Throne Speech attacking Alberta on Tuesday. Below: B.C. Premier Christie Clark, NDP strategist Brian Topp, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and B.C. NDP leader John Horgan. You no longer … . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: B.C. politics as seen from Alberta: Christy Clark’s re-election strategy exposed

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Microwaste, Big Problem

I phoned Johnson & Johnson about why they continue to sell products with microbeads after Parliament started to vote last year toward creating a law to ban their sale. The customer care rep had no specific information, and hadn’t heard about the forthcoming ban on microbeads the Conservatives started to pursue the day before the […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Microwaste, Big Problem

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Conservatives Failed to Protect Privacy

The Liberals record? Not much better. “I can’t answer the question about the former government, what their reasons were,” said Sajjan, also noting he does not believe any of the metadata inadvertently shared could have ended up in the hands of any countries beyond the Five Eyes. BREAKING: #CSE suspends #metadata sharing with int'l partners […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Conservatives Failed to Protect Privacy

Blunt Objects Blog: Erin O’Toole – the hint is in the name

What is the sound of one hand clapping, Mr. O’Toole?

 Former Veterans Affairs Minister and current Conservative Public Safety critic Erin O’Toole (Durham) wants you to know that Trudeau should respect Canada’s diverse economy, and not champion some sectors and ‘demoralize’ others.

Hey, that’s all well and fine, I just wish the Honourable Mr. O’Toole would relay such sage advice back to his leadership, colleagues, and base of support, who all seem intent on pushing the pipelines through the heads of every other interested party – kind of “championing” the issue, no?

Well, actually O’Toole does the same thing, but that’s only in the House, where no one will see him.

I mean honestly, the HuffPo article is not a bad one, and it is exactly the sort of thing that the Conservatives need to write to reach out to voters like me (well, not like me, because I can see through the bullshit, mostly) – I’m a pipeline guy, I like digging up resources and pumping them every which way, hooray!

However, Mr. O’Toole and the other tools in the Conservative caucus and beyond are hoping people forget their government’s own record, which did not respect the diversified economy and did not respect diverse opinions. They had to have their power threatened in order to pump any stimulus into the economy and save the manufacturing jobs threatened by the Great Recession, and the Harper government and previous provincial Alberta PC governments did not exactly give good examples of diversification, unless your definition of that word is ensuring the Ethical Oil™ goes to market no matter who we have to call terrorists to get it there.

Do not even get me started on this stupid Conservative obsession with Trudeau’s neat little quip about being “resourceful.” They act like the guy declared war on the oil sands, instead of, you know like Mr. O’Toole has said, promoting DIVERSITY in the economy, because diversity means more than just having pipelines up the wazoo.

The Conservatives have a long way to go to seem credible again, and honestly, they need better O’Tooles than this if they’re going to succeed. . . . → Read More: Blunt Objects Blog: Erin O’Toole – the hint is in the name

Blunt Objects Blog: Erin O’Toole – the hint is in the name

What is the sound of one hand clapping, Mr. O’Toole? Former Veterans Affairs Minister and current Conservative Public Safety critic Erin O’Toole (Durham) wants you to know that Trudeau should respect Canada’s diverse economy, and not champion some… . . . → Read More: Blunt Objects Blog: Erin O’Toole – the hint is in the name

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Looking Back At the Conservatives’ Campaign

I wrote this on October 1, 2015, but never finished it: Let’s examine the Conservative’s campaign thus far: It began with them showing ads where men are being drowned, as an example of how they’ll protect us, but no one else will. In the middle it had one of their candidates quit for being caught […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Looking Back At the Conservatives’ Campaign

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Rona Ambrose – Smoke From The Ears

Anyone else smell pants burning? Maybe it’s something else. Hold on, you’re about to get whiplash. I guess having an empty head is a biological advantage since your brain doesn’t rattle around when you change direction this quickly. Not even Google can keep up with her position. “June 11, 2015 10:19PM EDT Health Minister Rona […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Rona Ambrose – Smoke From The Ears

Blunt Objects Blog: Will Kevin O’Leary become "Canada’s Trump"?

“Yes, Mr. Bond, I do believe I can take over Canada.”The news so far in this latter week has been all-a-chatter about Kevin O’Leary. First it was for his attempt to buy the resignation of the Premier of Alberta in a coup-d’etat attempt reminiscent of t… . . . → Read More: Blunt Objects Blog: Will Kevin O’Leary become "Canada’s Trump"?

Blunt Objects Blog: Will Kevin O’Leary become "Canada’s Trump"?

“Yes, Mr. Bond, I do believe I can take over Canada.”The news so far in this latter week has been all-a-chatter about Kevin O’Leary. First it was for his attempt to buy the resignation of the Premier of Alberta in a coup-d’etat attempt reminiscent of t… . . . → Read More: Blunt Objects Blog: Will Kevin O’Leary become "Canada’s Trump"?

Politics and Entertainment: Is a Referendum the Best Way to Determine an Electoral System?

.Is a Referendum the Best Way to Determine an Electoral System?

Theoretically a referendum may seem like the most obvious and democratic way to determine whether electoral reform is desirable in Canada; but, as we have seen with referendums at the provincial level in BC, PEI, and Ontario, the results almost always render the status quo, not change, largely because of the nature of the choices: the known against the unknowns. That is, first-past-the-post, whether on the referendum ballot or not, is stacked in a binary structure almost always against both a ranked ballot system and proportional representation. There is of course a built in psychological bias for the known in such a situation, and inevitably the unknowns tend to split the alternative vote. Those who want a referendum and favour FPP would seem to be aware of this potential structural deficiency, recognizing that first-past-the-post would inevitably be triumphant either by choice or default.  In this context, then, a referendum is an illusion of democracy.
And so it’s clearly in the interests of those who enjoy a substantial degree of power through first-past-the post to maintain it. In this case, that would be the good old Conservative Party of Canada, who  – let’s be honest – don’t really want a referendum because in fact they really don’t want electoral reform.* Instead, they just don’t want Parliament to consider the issue,** for their real concern is maintaining the power they enjoy through the status quo. Their call for a referendum, in other words, is a mere political ploy, not a genuine gesture in the direction of real democracy; and, sad to say, they’ve sucked in quite a few on the left of the political spectrum.  THE CPC know that were proportional representation, for example, to be established, in many of the ridings where they have won by FPP  – particularly rural ridings – their power would be significantly eroded.***
A referendum offers a second advantage to those who don’t want electoral reform in that it provides a much more straightforward opportunity to lobby if not propagandize against whatever systems are presented as alternatives to FPP by way of various media, editorials,**** op eds, radio talk shows and advertising – a much more difficult task to execute if reform were to be considered through a consultative all-party parliamentary process that would have the sanctioned weight of the representatives Canadians have elected to govern them. It is certainly one of the reasons some want a referendum rather than parliamentary consideration: it allows for substantial direct  “partisanship” spin.
________________________
*Cf. Robin Sears: “The Conservatives are already demanding a referendum on any change to the electoral system, secure in the knowledge that that would mean certain defeat for any reform. Some gullible journalists have defended a referendum as an essential democratic test. What that naively fails to recall, of course, is that there has never been a non-partisan “democratic” referendum. The final choice will inevitably be political and require partisan approval.” 
**Why would they? First-past-the-post is not on the agenda, as the Liberal election platform clearly says: “We are committed to ensuring that 2015 will be the last federal election conducted under the first-past-the-post voting system.We will convene an all-party Parliamentary committee to review a wide variety of reforms, such as ranked ballots, proportional representation, mandatory voting, and online voting.This committee will deliver its recommendations to Parliament. Within 18 months of forming government, we will introduce legislation to enact electoral reform.”
***Under FPP, less populated rural ridings carry as much representational weight in parliament as do densely populated urban ridings. Because of that discrepancy, they are really less democratically representational. Both a ranking ballot system and PR in particular would in fact be more representational of all voters in a given riding and thus more democratic.
****This has already begun in rural newspapers and even The Globe and Mail.

. . . → Read More: Politics and Entertainment: Is a Referendum the Best Way to Determine an Electoral System?

The Tory Pirate - Politics & Policy: The Mutually Unintelligibility of Right & Left

Recently a friend of mine on Facebook was asking why conservatives seemed to misunderstand a key aspect ofliberalism. The question was, and is, an interesting one. And it led me back to a field of study I first encountered inuniversity and have run across from time to time since then. Specifically I am referring to the ideas of Jonathan Haidt.He proposed that a lot of the anger generated between liberals and conservatives is because both groups assume thatthere is only one scale for mo […] . . . → Read More: The Tory Pirate – Politics & Policy: The Mutually Unintelligibility of Right & Left

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Concalls: Duffy Trial Revelations

The Duffy Trial has been a bit of an expose on how the Harper Cons’ PMO operated. It’s not pretty. The comments made about Sona and Finely are nothing to sneeze at either. With Sona destined to sit in jail, and Finely in a grave, it all seems a little bit of an academic discussion […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Concalls: Duffy Trial Revelations

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Do Not As I Used To Say and Do

Not sure what’s more pathetic and hypocritical: Wudrick and Taylor feigning desire for un-tinkered elections, or Wall pining for Ottawa money. @saskboy what on earth are you talking about? We just want a referendum. We SUPPORTED STV in the BC referenda. — Aaron Wudrick (@awudrick) December 28, 2015 The hypocrisy in each case approaches satirical […] . . . → Read More: Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff: Do Not As I Used To Say and Do