Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream

Politics and its Discontents: …Gone?

The tale of Eve Adams gets increasingly melodramatic, and increasingly reminiscent of Helena Guergis. That she will suffer Helena’s political fate is looking more likely with each passing day.

Readers may recall that prior to her fall from grace, Helena Guergis, at the Charlottetown airport in February of 2010, allegedly threw a tantrum and screamed obscenities at staff who asked her to take her boots off for security screening. An airport worker said it was among the worst meltdowns he had ever seen.

Fast forward a few years and a similar outrageous sense of political entitlement was acted out (Read more…)

Calgary Grit: The Best Intentions

Michael Chong is one the most respected people in the country when it comes to democratic reform. He quit his cabinet position on principle, and proposed a series of thoughtful Question Period reforms in 2010, which seem all the more overdue after the Paul Calandra show we saw last week.

So when Michael Chong tables a private members bill to decentralize power away from the Prime Minister’s Office, it’s impossible to doubt his sincerety. It’s a worthy cause led by a noble champion. Another champion of democratic reform, Andrew Coyne, has praised the Reform Act saying “Parliament will never be (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Tim Harper discusses Stephen Harper’s current list of distractions – with Rob Ford and his Senate appointees naturally topping the list. But sadly, while John Ivison may be right in noting that actual citizens are having trouble getting the Cons to bother administering federal programs, the combination of scandal and dishonesty doesn’t seem to be slowing down their anti-worker omnibus legislation in the slightest.

- On the Senate front, Scott Stelmaschuk compares the Duffy payoff and cover-up to the long-forgotten Chuck Cadman scandal – with the key differences in exposing the story being (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: On tests of character

Dr. Dawg has rightly pointed out the Cons’ attempt to invent a story based on Tom Mulcair’s audiacity in driving to his own parking spot. (Though we can be assured that members of the limo-propelled Con cabinet will never face precisely that same scenario.)

But if there is a story worth noting, I’d see it in comparing Mulcair’s response to a simple misunderstanding to the way far worse stories have been handled by his political counterparts.

Here’s Mulcair’s reaction to the incident: Thursday morning, however, a new guard was on duty at the checkpoint and she didn’t recognize Mulcair.

(Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Why wait? Read 2013’s shocking political headlines right now on Alberta Diary!

The Dagny Taggarts, a synchronized skating team from Ottawa get ready to do their popular routine, “Where Is John Galt?” Defence Minister Joan Crockatt is in the front row, second from right. Below: Senator Tom Flanagan; U of C economics student Kim Jong-un, in full Calgary drag; Deputy Premier Thomas Lukaszuk, ecstatic for his boss; and Nobel Prize winner Raj Sherman with the author. Actual events may not turn out exactly as predicted.

Why wait for 2013’s headlines when you can read them here on Alberta Dairy right now? In a spirit of transparency bordering on clairvoyance, Alberta Diary

. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Why wait? Read 2013’s shocking political headlines right now on Alberta Diary!

Law is Cool: Canada’s Newest Law Student – Helena Guergis

If you are starting law school this fall at the University of Alberta, you’ll have a celebrity of sorts in your class.

Helena Guergis, the former MP who unsuccessfully sued Prime Minister Harper and the Conservative Party of Canada, is starting law school this year according to the Toronto Star,

Her first year of legal studies in Edmonton begins less than two weeks after a judge tossed out most of a $1.3 million conspiracy and defamation lawsuit she filed against Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the Conservative Party and others after she was expelled from caucus in 2010.

No

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Michael Harris continues to highlight some of the fundamental problems with the Cons’ view of politics, this time identifying Stephen Harper as being afflicted with “master of the universe syndrome”: When you control all the levers of power, when you have no scruples, when you are surrounded by nutters who will do anything you say without thinking, when you conceive of language as disconnected from objective reality, when you believe biz bull and Beatle songs are enough to bamboozle the Great Unwashed, it’s understandable in certain personality types that the conviction begins to

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Alberta Diary: The coda to Oda was writ bright with orange juice

Bev Oda, foreground, enjoys a celebratory dinner at the Savoy, her orange juice just visible under her right arm. Departing Canadian politicians may not be exactly as illustrated. Below: Ms. Oda in happier times; Ms. Oda has a last cigarette before barking out the order to the firing squad.

Bev Oda had to know she was a dead woman walking – politically speaking, that is. So give the Member of Parliament for Durham, Ont., some credit for recognizing the obvious, and shouting out the order to the firing squad herself!

She’ll be gone by the end of the month,

. . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: The coda to Oda was writ bright with orange juice

Leftist Jab: Brent Rathgeber Denounces Cabinet Perks as Cover Against Allegation of Being "Asshole" Email Leaker

Rathgeber: attempting to avoid the wrath of Jason Kenney

As backbenchers go, Brent Rathgeber certainly has political acumen.

The current chatter in Canadian politics is that Brent Rathgeber is hurting his advancement chances by blogging about the opulence of cabinet ministers. Technically, that’s very true but he probably also saved his political career. If a little bit of analysis led me to

Impolitical: Taxpayers subsidize more Harper litigation

There’s a story in Postmedia about Harper using a private lawyer and not a Department of Justice counsel to defend himself in the Guergis lawsuit against him and many others. The taxpayer will be put to extra expense as a result of the hiring of Robert Staley, who specializes in, among other things, defamation, which is the crux of Guergis’ suit against Harper et al. (all the other defendants are mentioned in the report).

Andrew MacDougall, Harper’s spokesperson, said this in justifying the hiring of outside counsel: MacDougall said “it was deemed inappropriate” for government lawyers to represent Harper

. . . → Read More: Impolitical: Taxpayers subsidize more Harper litigation

Helena Guergis lesson to Michael Sona: you can’t fight ‘em once they’ve thrown you under the bus

"Holy shit Helena, what do I do now?" "Shut up and eat it."

You have to feel for Michael Sona. We don’t know if he’s guilty or not, much in the same way we still don’t really know the facts about Helena Guergis’ fall from Conservative grace. Stephen Harper gave the axe . . . → Read More: Helena Guergis lesson to Michael Sona: you can’t fight ‘em once they’ve thrown you under the bus

Helena Guergis lesson to Michael Sona: you can’t fight ‘em once they’ve thrown you under the bus

“Holy shit Helena, what do I do now?” “Shut up and eat it.”

You have to feel for Michael Sona. We don’t know if he’s guilty or not, much in the same way we still don’t really know the facts about Helena Guergis’ fall from Conservative grace. Stephen Harper gave the axe to Guergis because she was big time and her stink involved accusations of the biggest Con bugaboo of them all – drug use. Poor

Law is Cool: Helena Guergis Sues Harper, CPC, and Cassels

When former Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) Member of Parliament, Helena Guergis, filed a claim yesterday against Prime Minister Harper and the CPC at the Ontario Superior Court, the story made headlines.

What didn’t attract as much attention is that the claim also included as defendants Arthur Hamilton and his law firm, Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP,

2. The Plaintiffclaims as against the Defendant, Arthur Hamilton (“Hamilton”), for conspiracy, defamation, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of duty of good faith, breach of confidence, and negligence. 3. The Plaintiff claims as against the Defendant, Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP (“Cassels Brock”),

. . . → Read More: Law is Cool: Helena Guergis Sues Harper, CPC, and Cassels

Prime Minister gets his ass sued

OTTAWA – Former federal cabinet minister Helena Guergis is suing Prime Minister Cowboy Steve, the Conservative party, and several of their lackeys for her 2010 ejection from caucus over allegations of improper conduct.

The former cabinet minister publicly stated she had been mistreated and maligned by her former boss and his employees. As plaintiff in the civil lawsuit, she is seeking compensation for damage she claims those actions inflicted on her public reputation. 

A former staffer to the minister told the press “We would like to see his ass sued off. All the way off. He would no longer

. . . → Read More: Prime Minister gets his ass sued

Sue Helena Sue!

I love this. Not that the suit will amount to anything. But the girl’s got moxie.

Kady’s reaction is priceless.

Right of Center Ice: Of what value is Bernier to Harper?

Maybe Harper really is the master tactician that Flanagan and Levant swoon about. Maybe. After all, I cannot for the life of me figure out the value Bernier has to Harper and the CPC caucus in Quebec. Well, that’s not true, I have a loose hypothesis but I’m not really seriously considering it. Sorta.

My at-a-distance-analysis suggests that Bernier’s new found libertarian approach to everything under the sun, in combination with his opposition to Bill 101, is a ploy designed to woo Anglophone Quebeckers over to the Conservative ranks. As an anglophone with deep prairie roots, some of the (Read more…)

Rahim Jaffer implicated in Guergis pregnancy

OTTAWA – At a parliamentary committee hearing, Rahim Jaffer was revealed to be the mastermind behind his wife Helena Guergis’ pregnancy. Jaffer admitted to cooking up the entire scheme when it appeared that no one else would step forward to take responsibility.

A private investigator who was tailing the couple said Jaffer and Guergis were seen leaving local seafood restaurant Busty’s together in the former cabinet minister’s riding of Simcoe-Grey. The investigator found the receipt for the restaurant tryst, which was disclosed at the hearing. The meal consisted of two dozen Malpec oysters, a bucket of Coronas on ice and eight tequila shooters. The couple declined dessert, saying they had to go home and “feed the kitty“.

Committee members promised to have Jaffer back to answer more questions. “We’d like to know more about why they were in such a hurry to leave” added chairperson Guy L’érectile. “Everybody stays for karaoke on Thursdays, and I understand Rahim does a spot-on Marie Osmond.”

<div class=”statcounter”><a title=”blogger visitor counter” class=”statcounter” href=”http://www.statcounter.com/blogger/”><img class=”statcounter” src=”http://c.statcounter.com/5554999/0/1562fe85/1/” alt=”blogger visitor counter” /></a></div>

. . . → Read More: Rahim Jaffer implicated in Guergis pregnancy

Confused about the Guergis/Jaffer Affair?

Here’s the bottom line: Nobody is taking responsibility for anything (which pretty much sums up everything you need to know about government as well).

And if you’re really into making your head explode, you can watch Snowdy’s testimony here.  

Memo to Helena Guergis

Memo to Helena Guergis: If you want to be believed, try telling the truth. Don’t rely on crocodile tears about how Stephen Harper isn’t your BFF anymore; what a good Christian you supposedly are; tales about how you were working so hard that you had absolutely no idea what was going on in the rest of your life; how you “never” tried illegal drugs – oh, except for that time when you did; faux tantrum explanations like how you actually think airports are “hellholes” – not PEI (even though that’s what you apologized for); lies (and there are (Read more…)

This week in Conservatives behaving badly…

- The Cons have stripped Helena Guergis of the chance to run in her riding without, she claims in a letter to the party, providing any reason for the decision. She is also scheduled to testify, along with her husband Rahim Jaffer, at the government operations committee on June 9th. The Cons have been crowing about how the Liberal party has apparently subverted “democracy” by whipping the upcoming vote on the long gun registry (because they’ve never whipped a vote, now have they?) and then they turn around and refuse to allow the people of Guergis’ riding to decide (Read more…)

Jaffer – The Victim

Rahim Jaffer, appearing in front of the government operations committee this afternoon – choking back crocodile tears while proclaiming what a victim he is – claimed that he has never lobbied the government on behalf of his business, Green Power Genera… . . . → Read More: Jaffer – The Victim

The Wheatsheaf: This and that, here and there

The lack of inspiration, motivation, and recreation to complete a blog entry with any degree of analytical thought prevents a lengthy post. Rather here is a summary of thoughts on recent topics.

Guergis and Jaffer – the power couple we love to hate:I am sick of this news story. The salacious gossip has news media drooling, almost to the preclusion of all other stories. For the time being there is much ink wasted on this story. I suspect that there will be more scandalous tidbits that will be revealed in due time, but that will come out through investigative (Read more…)