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BigCityLib Strikes Back: On Being An Asshole in Politics, Part 1.1037

This was indeed somewhat assholish.  Not very, because Bob Rae couldn’t have known (though he should have suspected) that the cameras would have been on him.  And I get the sentiment.  If it had been me up there I would have talked about… . . . → Read More: BigCityLib Strikes Back: On Being An Asshole in Politics, Part 1.1037 – Alberta Politics: 2016 will mark the end of Senate Elections in Alberta

The Senatorial Selection Act, the law that governs Alberta’s unique Senate nominee elections, expires on Dec. 31, 2016. The longstanding policy of the Alberta New Democratic Party which supports the abolition of the Canadian Senate likely … . . . → Read More: – Alberta Politics: 2016 will mark the end of Senate Elections in Alberta

The Canadian Progressive: Information commissioner takes Harper to court for withholding Senate expenses scandal documents

Suzanne Legault, Canada’s federal information commissioner, is taking Stephen Harper to the Federal Court for withholding information relating to the Senate expenses scandal.

The post Information commissioner takes Harper to court for withholding Senate expenses scandal documents appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Montreal Simon: Free This Country from the Scourge of Harperism

These days you might get the impression that this election is all and only about the economy.The economy that Stephen Harper has helped drive into the ground.But today two very different Canadians sum up what it's really all about.Read more »

Accidental Deliberations: Good to go

A few images which may or may not become highly relevant in just a few minutes. Harper is not serious about senate reform

Stephen Harper is not serious about senate reform.

Despite his announcement last week that he plans to stop filling vacancies in the upper chamber until the senate is reformed, his track record on the issue is very poor.

Stephen Harper, cc: pmwebphotos (

Harper was first elected to parliament in 1993 as the Calgary West MP for the Reform Party, which was well known for its stance favouring a Triple-E (equal, elected, effective) senate. Since becoming Prime-Minister nearly 10 years ago, his only substantive action on senate reform has amounted to just two things: appointing senators elected in ad (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Vic Toews and the Never-Ending Scandals of the Con Regime

He emerged from a Mennonite colony in the Paraguayan jungle to terrorize Canada. He was one of the worst cabinet ministers this country has ever known.A brutish religious fanatic, a vicious anti-gay bigot, and a ghastly hypocrite.He called those who didn't agree with him perverts.He was dogged by one scandal after the other.And now Vic Toews is in trouble. Again. Read more »

The Canadian Progressive: Ex-Conservative Senator Wallin committed “breach of trust and fraud”: RCMP

The RCMP announced Monday that ex-Conservative Senator Pamela Wallin, a Harper appointee, “committed the offences of breach of trust and fraud.”

The post Ex-Conservative Senator Wallin committed “breach of trust and fraud”: RCMP appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and God Save Justin Trudeau

Ever since Justin Trudeau became Liberal leader Stephen Harper has been trying to portray him as less masculine than he is.As a girly man, the one his supporters like to call Justine.Even though as he recently demonstrated, by cowering in that closet, he's no manly man himself eh?But now a movie is about to be released which although it's called God Save Justin Trudeau, might as well be called God Save Stephen Harper.Read more »

Montreal Simon: Senategate : The RCMP Goes After the PMO !!!

Oh goody. It looks as if my favourite show Senategate is back.With the whole cast of characters ready to entertain us again.And now even MORE exciting than before.With the RCMP going after the PMO !!!!Read more »

Politics and its Discontents: On Harper’s Judgement

H/t The Chronicle Herald Recommend this Post

The Canadian Progressive: Scandalous Senate and PMO appointments say Harper is unqualified to criticise Trudeau’s f-bomb

by: Obert Madondo | March 31, 2014

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau dropped the f-bomb when he addressed the crowd at the Fight for the Cure charity boxing match in Gatineau, Quebec, over the weekend.

“I’m going tell you, there is no experience like stepping into this ring and measuring yourself,” Trudeau said. “Your name, your fortune, your intelligence, your beauty, none of that fucking matters.”

The crowd reportedly cheered.

But, as usual, the Conservatives weren’t amused. Prime Minister Stephen Harper tried to capitalize on the expletive to score cheap political points.

“This is yet another example of Justin Trudeau’s lack of (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: It’s Not the Senate, But Close

Disgraced, ex-Tory senator Patrick Brazeau has found work apparently almost in the shadow of Parliament Hill.  Brazeau is the new day manager at the Bare Fax Gentlemen’s Club.

A visitor from Lanham, U.S.A. left this review on Yelp:

Coming from the US for a business trip in Ottawa. I have to say Barefax is the best strip club I’ve been to. All of my previous experience has been in the US. The girls are  a lot more friendly, not pushy at all. They’re more beautiful as well. The only place in the US that has equivalent quality (Read more…)

Eclectic Lip: December: a podcast premiere

The nice folks at (TWiE) invited me to guest on their podcast on their late November episode, Good News, Bad News, Ugly News. While most of their guests are leading experts in their fields, and I’m just a talkative and reasonably-knowledgeable former fuel cell engineer, I heeded Gore Vidal’s wisdom and agreed.

It being the first time my comments were being recorded for posterity (well… outside NSA headquarters, that is) I spent a few hours doing homework, researching the backgrounds of the energy stories we were scheduled to discuss, and refining / rehearsing a few talking (Read more…)

Calgary Grit: 2013: Year in Review

January: SunTV applies for corporate welfare, arguing that they cannot survive unless the government forces people to watch them.

Later this year, they would give Rob and Doug Ford their own show…before cancelling it faster than Lucky 7.

Whoever could have guessed this fine young man would find himself at the centre of so much controversy?

February: Patrick Brazeau is knocked out of the Tory caucus. While the Senate has yet to change rules around travel expenses, they were quick to pass a “no pictures of senators in thongs” bill.

March: In what was really the only (Read more…)

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Deflect, Spin, Misdirect: Preston Manning and the PMO

Apparently, Preston Manning must have received new orders from the PMO.  In yesterday’s Globe and Mail, we found Mr. Manning opining on the supposed issue of ethics in the Parliamentary Press Gallery.

The upshot of Manning’s arguments is that the whole Duffy affair wouldn’t have happened if the Parliamentary Press Gallery had a rule in place that prohibited members from taking a government appointment for five years after they leave the Press Gallery.

In short, “Hey look!  The problem is over there!”.

No Mr. Manning, your transparent and ridiculous attempt to direct attention away from the centre of the (Read more…)

Progressive Proselytizing: A Scandal in Two Institutions: The Senate Half

What has become known as the Senate Scandal is really a scandal in two institutions: the Senate, of course, but also the PMO. The PMO half of this scandal was written here. What follows is the Senate half of the scandal:

One of the advantages of living in a (relatively) functioning first world democracy is that we are (relatively) unburdened by the kinds of systemic corruption that plagues other polities. Cases of direct financial payoff – suitcases full of cash changing hands in empty parking lot in exchange for political favours – is relatively low. Where in countries with far (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Repeat after me: Justin Trudeau is making rookie mistakes… have you got that?

Justin Trudeau at left, with some boring white guy in a tie that’s too wide. Don’t ever underrate the power of pixie dust! Below: The same boring guy with Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and with well-known cage fighter Patrick Brazeau. Weirdly, everyone in these pictures appears exactly as illustrated!

Repeat after me: Rookie mistakes. Rookie mistakes. Rookie mistakes…

Do you think if we say it enough times, it’ll be true?

Plus, don’t forget Ladies’ Night, Red China and marijuana… I mean, like, really, is this a meme yet?

The entire Canadian punditocracy now seems to have jumped on the Justin-Trudeau-is-a-totally-flaky-rookie (Read more…)

Canadian Political Viewpoints: Deja Harper

With much more of a whimper than a bang, Harper’s three ‘disgraced’ Senators have been suspended from the Senate. No doubt, Conservative insiders are patting each other on the back and sitting back and assuming that this headache is finally about the pass.

But is it?

Recent polling data has shown that the government, and particularly the Prime Minister, have taken a hit in popularity. Harper’s own personal credibility is in tatters, as many Canadians have stated that they do not believe Harper’s chain of events. Perhaps the biggest success story here is what Mike Duffy accomplished when he returned (Read more…)

liberal catnip: The Senate: Where due process went to die today…

Senate votes to suspend Brazeau, Duffy, Wallin

This is a dark, dark day for Canadian democracy and justice. The unelected senate took it upon itself to create a new system of so-called accountability by unceremoniously turfing 3 senators who haven’t been legally charged or convicted of anything – all at the behest of Control Freak Steve. And then the Con leader in the senate, Claude Carignan, whose office quietly received a $600,000 raise in its budget last week had the nerve to attack the Liberal senators after the votes – conveniently ignoring the fact that several Con senators also voted (Read more…)

liberal catnip: Steve’s Senate: The Grift That Keeps on Giving

The average Canadian can be forgiven for not being able to follow all of the bouncing balls being bunted about in the PMO playHouse as Stephen Harper fancies himself the prime mimicker of everything decent and upstanding while failing to keep his senate scandal stories straight from one day to the next. Absolute control corrupts absolutely (to bastardize an old cliché).

Last week, CBC/The National’s Peter Mansbridge summarized some of the history quite well in this video clip, in case you need to refresh your memory or catch up on the sordid affair.  Caution: may leave a bad aftertaste, (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on the combination of institutional and personal flaws that’s combined to create the Stephen Harper Senate scandal.

For further reading…- CBC reproduces the documents tabled by Mike Duffy in the Senate here. – The Senate debates featuring the defences of Duffy, Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau can be found here. – PressProgress reminds us what the Cons said about the residency of Duffy and Wallin just a few months ago, while Jordan Press and Kirsten Smith offer a partial timeline (if one which ignores the fact that the controversy dated back to 2008). And it was Press (Read more…) - Alberta politics: The ghosts of senate reform haunt the Harper Conservatives

TweetThe ghosts of Senate reform will haunt Prime Minister Stephen Harper as his party establishment gathers in Calgary on Halloween to discuss and debate party policy. After more than seven years in office, Mr. Harper’s Conservatives have accomplished little on the issue of reforming the Canadian Senate. Who would have thought that a Senate scandal […]

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Harper’s Eyes Wide Shut Moment

As the Senate Expenses Scandal unfolds, Canadians are seeing the consequences of the culture that Harper has fostered in the CPC in his drive to gain power.   When Harper set his sights on power, specifically on making the CPC “Canada’s Natural Governing Party” for the coming decades, he decided on some key fundamentals to guide the operation of the party:  The first was an unyielding control over every action and word to come out of the party’s political apparatus.  The second was to do everything possible to undermine parliament in such a way as to hamstring (Read more…)

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: There Is No Honour Among Thieves

Make no mistake about it, I have little sympathy for Mike Duffy.  When I caught wind of his political aspirations several years before he became a Senator, he ceased to be among the journalists that I had much respect for.  

That said, Duffy’s last couple of speeches in the Senate speak volumes.  Today, he revealed the existence of yet another cheque originating within the CPC apparatus to bail him out of the financial quagmire that he found himself in.

Senator Mike Duffy set Ottawa abuzz Monday with his latest revelations from the Senate floor. Duffy says Conservative party lawyer (Read more…)