Help cure cancer, star in a 70s porno!


Two differing viewpoints

I guess you have to decide which man's advice to heed:

For ye have the poor always with you.
-- Jesus Christ
Our goal is to eliminate [homelessness]. I know it's a huge goal, an ambitious goal, but let's set a goal and work towards it as a team, and that includes municipal government, all of our agencies and the provincial government.
-- Premier Ed Stelmach

Bonus quote: Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel:
It's a phrase. It's like, are we going to eliminate greenhouse gases? No, but we've got to try to do it.

The early news was far better

I guess somebody took Stephane Dion aside this morning and gave him a speech about which hill he wanted to die on.

Earlier today 630 CHED was reporting Dion threatened to force a general election on Stephen Harper's plan to cut the GST down to 5%. I was so excited I almost swerved off the Quesnel bridge! Absolutely, Dion, absolutely! Harper has gone too far this time! Forget Kyoto, or Afghanistan, or the crime bill: you want to tell the Canadian people how you felt the need to remove Harper from office because he was going to cut the GST. Fight an entire election on that plank, and the Liberal Party would rocket to heights not seen since Mulroney's sucessor was rewarded for his wise implementation of the Gouge and Screw Tax.

But now, however, the Globe and Mail is reporting that Dion has announced that the LIEberals will not be bringing Harper down tomorrow. Good news for the Liberal Party (and their on-life-support coffers), bad news for me. Ah well.

Also queue, of course, the nay-sayers who have to denounce the tax cuts. Already we have Dion promoting "any other tax cuts" (which Harper should call his bluff on).

Mr. Dion explained that economists from organizations as diverse as the Fraser Institute, the Canadian Auto Workers, the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, and Canada’s major banks agree that taking another point off the GST should not be a tax cutting priority for the government. Even a study by the Department of Finance argued that cutting the GST was the worst tax reduction strategy available for Canada.

"For Canadians who would rather save a penny on a cup of coffee, the GST cut might work,” he said. “At the end of the day, however, the vast majority of working Canadians would prefer to bring home a bigger paycheque.”
Now from an economic perspective, Dion has a point. The problem that he doesn't realize, and that Harper does, is the GST is a tax that is reveiled by large numbers of people, and a tax that people notice every single day. Who failed to see on June 1st 2006 that the GST was suddenly "only" 6% every time you went to the store? The GST may be a fairly benign tax (indeed, economists suggest Alberta bring in a sales tax to replace our income tax -- there are arguments against it, but the notion is there). However, the GST cut is a genius political strategy. Next election, people are reminded daily how Harper took steps to axing the tax, something that the Liberals constantly campaigned on and never delivered. The actual benefit to the individual taxpayer may be small. [the tax cut only buys a pizza a month critics say, never bothering to point out that its still a bigger pizza than Chretien/Martin/Dion ever fed us.. -ed] The benefit to the Harper government is huge, and the price that Dion has to pay to fight it is bigger still. Jack Layton may be able to complain about the GST cut (from Jack's twisted perspective, this turns every citizen of Canada into one of these greedy tarsands companies "stealing" more than their "fair share" of the gross domestic product "owed" to the government), but the Liberal Party of Canada has no right to lecture anybody on the subject of GST cuts.


I'se the B'y that makes a boot, I'se the B'y that is overeducated in Newfoundland

So, er, this is interesting...

A shift in the labour market has put employers in Newfoundland and Labrador on the defensive, with many saying they are unable to find qualified applicants despite the largest unemployment queues in Canada.

"We're looking for people with a [high school] education, that have some background and work history," said David Gill, who has been exasperated trying to recruit workers for Terra Footwear in Harbour Grace.

With a need to increase production to fill an order of 53,000 pairs of military boots, the company was surprised to learn it has not nearly enough qualified applicants.

"We're finding more and more there are a lot of people out there with no work history or who don't have high school completion," Gill told CBC News.

Er, but, I thought there was lots of unemployment out there. And indeed there is:
Statistics Canada estimates that Newfoundland and Labrador's workforce has grown by about four per cent since the beginning of 2006, with about 9,000 new jobs added to the labour pool.

However, at 14.2 per cent — the rate recorded in October — the province continues to have the highest unemployment rate in Canada.

The St. John's area, though, has an unemployment rate of eight per cent, and employers there say they have been caught off guard by swiftly shifting sands.
Whoa whoa whoa! Hold the phone! Swiftly shifting sands? It's still eight freaking per cent unemployment. And is Newfoundland really doing so bad that they can't find a bunch of people qualified to work in a boot factory?

Still, this is unintentionally hilarious: even when there are jobs in Newfoundland, nobody with the smallest amount of skill can be found, having already moved to Alberta. And meanwhile, "dumb Newfie" jokes won't be going away anytime soon now that no less than the CBC tells us how dumb those 14.2% unemployed Newfies are to be turned down for menial labour.


Cartographic anomolies

A while back, after I enrolled in the hockey commentary on North of 49 Hockey (which I will resume comments on one day, honestly, no kidding), I got to thinking about how "North of 49" is such common slang for Canada that nobody really notices how wildly inaccurate it is. Now while there are a couple-three American locations above the 49th parallel (discussed on this page), I'm talking about the huge swaths of Canada located below (and in some cases far below) 49°N, all of which except the southern tip of Vancouver Island, I'm proud to say, is a disease of the east.

Our first location of note the border of the 49th parallel with longitude. Here we already see how Thunder Bay in western Ontario is notably below the magic line.

Now take a look at 80°W. By this point, we are pretty much north of Toronto. We're also a good 11 hour drive from the self-proclaimed centre of the universe. Even Timmins, Ontario (home of Shania Twain) is south of the vaunted 49th.

By the time we get to 73°W, the border has finally bumped north a bit to compensate. Of course, we're still ungodly north: 6 hours drive north of Quebec City and 8 hours north of Montreal. We're also north of Chicoutimi, and barely south of Chibougamau.

It gets closer to the western world at 68°W where Rimouski is a Thunder Bay-style short hop away, and we finally see northern communities of the dividing line: Baie-Comeau and Sept-Iles. Baie-Comeau is the hometown of Brian Mulroney, for interest's sake. Only 13 minutes north of the "49th parallel", it is some 28 minutes further south than Lethbridge, and two minutes further north than Richmond, BC: one of Greater Vancouver's southern municipalities.

In the "far east", Newfoundland finally bridges the geography gap around 58°W. Here we see that Corner Brook barely misses being above the line, and at 56°W it is easy to see how Twillingate, Musgrave Harbour, and Lewisporte all manage to rise above the 49th. North Newfoundland's White Bay and Port Sanders do a pretty good job of sailing above the parallel, and of course all of Labrador is far above the parallel.

But it really goes to make you think: and while orthodoxy holds that "Canadian winters are really rough", from a north/south perspective Montana residents can hold their noses up high: their lowest latitude of 44°21′ is in fact almost a full degree of latitude (ie. 110km) than Toronto's 43°39′N.

Likewise, of the 6 Canadian NHL teams represented at "North of 49 Hockey", only three of the teams (Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver) are actually north of the 49th. Winnipeg was a fourth, but also was counterbalanced with Quebec City, again falling below the line that metaphorically is used to represent the border.

Similarly there is not a single CFL team in the Eastern Conference [er, provided that Ottawa's team doesn't collapse and Winterpeg can go back to the west... -ed] that can claim to be North of the 49th: and no franchise could ever survive at a location you could legitimately name. (Even St. John's, Nfld. is below the 49th, so unless you want to watch the Smooth Rock Falls Tigers my thesis remains strong).

The thing to really remember is how much of the population lives below the 49th and still considers it a dividing line. In reality, Maine and most of the northwestern states cannot even use "neighbours to the north" to accurate describe Toronto/Ottawa. Meanwhile, Montreal or Charlottown might use their northern-nation status to make some political hay, only Grande Prairie or Saskatoon has any right to harvest it. (Hell, a sign in Grande Prairie actually reads "East to Alaska", a Willie Horton number that Mississauga denizens would find as incomprehensible as a Texan).

How not to win a World Series

Be a National League team that lets an American League pitcher get his first ever Major League hit.

Well, I would have preferred Colorado to win, but after Justin Ryan Speier's Great Walking Performance in Game 1 the writing was on the wall.

Maybe the Red Sox will have to wait 86 more years starting now...

In the face of these brutish charges, I choose to prove most of them right

Richard Warman takes on Freedominion.ca:

PLEASE BE ADVISED that you have written words and/or published words that are defamatory and libelous to me appearing on the website "www.freedominion.ca.

The material appears on web pages within the following threads:


2) Richard Warman attacks free speech...

i) repeats the allegation that I am the "censorship champion"


iii) repeats the libels of Paul Fromm in describing me as
- an enemy of freedom and censor; anti-free speech campaigner; a nasty piece of work;


vi) reposts the entirety of the original libel notice dated 10 September 2007 thus republishing the libels contained therein
vii) again reposts the contents of the libel notice thus republishing the libels, adopts many of the libels therein, and accuses me of being on a "censorship rampage"


ix) that I "attack free speech"


xvii) that I am a bully abusing the Ontario Human Rights Commission


xxviii)repeats the libel at xxvii and states that I am a bully and minor-league thug attempting to use the law to silence, suppress, and censor things that offend my tender sensibilities


xxxix) that I am using taxpayer money to throttle the Internt; that I am part of a nasty group of enemies of free speech; that one of this group's key aims is the persecution of free thinkers on the Internet;


xl) contains repeated pictorial representations that I equal a frightening muzzling of Canadians


xlix) republishes libels 1, 3, and 18 of the original libel notice along with stating that "... a system of self-imposed one-sided censorship known as political correctness couldn't function without self-hating activists like Warman helping to enforce it."


l) repeatedly includes a pictorial representation that if I disapprove of what others say I will silence them


lv) alleges that I have made a career out of silencing people on the Internet


lx) republishes the libel at 18 in the original libel notice dated 10 September 2007
Somehow I'm not entirely sure that you help your case by claiming you've been libelled as a libel-lawsuit-happy activist. Not to mention that I'm pretty sure you can't libel somebody by posting a copy of a libel notice they've sent.


A clue why the movie stunk

From The Romulan Empire - The Scimitar, one of the featurettes on the Star Trek Nemesis DVD:

Well the Scimitar is a ship that's about three times larger than the Enterprise, and the Enterprise is the largest Enterprise the Federation has ever made.
Enterprise-E: 685 meters, 24/29 decks (depending which movie you watch, 29 in Nemesis
Enterprise-D: 641 meters, 42 decks.

And Herman Zimmerman has been with Trek for ages...


I'm pretty sure this would work

Like the B.C. Lions, the Eskimos have applied for a one-time NFL regular season game.

Edmonton would like the game on a Monday night at Commonwealth Stadium during the Thanksgiving long weekend in 2008 or 2009.

Lions owner David Braley said yesterday that he has applied for an NFL game in 2009 at B.C. Place to lead up to the Olympics. He seems very doubtful that an NFL team will permanently move to Canada anytime soon.
I think this could work, even though I hate the NFL.

I think the perfect game would feature the Green Bay Packers versus the Philadelphia Eagles. Not because of great cross-promotional purposes or anything, but merely because I would want to see how long it would take Saskatchwan fans to realize they weren't watching a Roughriders-Eskimos tilt.

News roundup, part 3

There are some such things as bad firsts. A good example would have to be Cassie Campbell joining the Sports Hall of Fame. Sure its not the actual Hockey Hall of Fame, but its bad enough.

While competing in three Olympics, seven world championships, and nine Four Nations Cups, she accumulated 16 gold and four silver medals. She is widely considered the face of women's hockey in Canada.
Er, is Hayley Wickenheiser late paying her dues or something? And I thought the "face of women's hockey" was that bad watch commercial with all the lesbians screaming "Canadian Women's Hockey Team, Esquire"?

The Financial Post has (another) great editorial, this time by William Watson, on the nature of the 49th parallel.
Unlike politicians, economists assume consumers are rational and can also do simple arithmetic of the sort required to translate between exchange rates. On that score, it's disconcerting that Canadians seem only to have noticed many U.S. prices are lower than ours now that the loonie is at par with the greenback and price stickers are translatable without calculation.

When they had to divide the U.S. price by 0.62 or 0.85 or 0.93 or whatever the exchange rate of the day was, they couldn't manage the comparison. If that's true, how will Canadians cope in the brave new information economy?
He really hits the ground running at the end with the bold suggestion that Flaherty...
could raise the limits on Canadian travellers' duty-free exemptions. Right now you can bring back a measly $50 duty-free if you're out of the country 24 hours. A minister who really wanted to stand up for consumers and make Canadian retailers sit up and take notice would make that $1,000. Stay out a week, bring back $10,000 worth, no questions asked. That would close the price gap lickety-split.
Sounds good to me!

Mad scientists around the world rejoice! world prices for uranium seem to have bottomed out. There's no better time to build that giant space laser or beuwolf cluster of fembots.

Unless the premier of Alberta abruptly changes tone and dismisses recommendations for higher oil and gas royalties, there will be little effect on prices of Canadian energy stocks, analysts said Thursday.

Investors are already prepared for hikes, analysts said, and shares will likely rise after Ed Stelmach details changes to the Canadian province's tax regime on Thursday.
So much for this analysis.

The Guardian writes about Bush's trip to Califor-nih-ay. My first off-the-cuff response to this is remembering that men like to look at fire: pyromania aside, how many of your fellow men have you gone camping with to discover that in the presence of a flickering pile of ripe wood and ashen pepsi cans you lose all interest in everything outside your sphere of influence? Keira Knightly and Eliza Dushku could strip naked in front of a campfire and I probably wouldn't even notice. So I suspect that Bush quite rightly saw the news reports and imagined going to see scenes like this, rather than this. I know I'd be disappointed...much as Guardian editors should be for this paragraph:
The tricky matter of when to time a presidential tour - which itself commands state and local resources - was one that the White House had to work through. Bush did not want his presence to interfere with emergency response efforts, so aides insisted that he and Schwarzenegger together decided Thursday was the right time for a presidential visit.
So, er, his aides insisted (to the press?) that Dubya/Arnold decided together? Aides can't insist on the same thing that the leaders decide together on, so there's a dropped participle in there somewhere.

One of the FBI's most wanted has been arrested in New Brunswick, despite being believed to be in Calgary. The funny part of this is when I saw the "BISMARCK, N.D" byline I actually misread it as "Bismarck, Nova Brunswick" and simultaneously wondered why I didn't know there was a Bismarck in Nova Brunswick and how McNair was there instead of out west. Turns out I was just psychic.

The sodomy of real people not being annoying enough to have to hear about, the media is now tormenting us with the uranism of Harry Potter characters. This article in the Montreal Gazette is one of the more lunatic varieties:
Hermione probably reads Margaret Atwood, and Harry Potter and Ron, probably nothing much at all. These enticing tidbits came out during J.K. Rowling's brief meeting with the press at Toronto's Elgin Theatre during the only Canadian stop on her North American tour.
Margaret Atwood was born in 1939, long after the Harry Potter books even took place. This is pure pandering to the lunatics who live in T.O.


News roundup, part 2

Don Martin addresses new Quebec policy in the National Post.

Never mind that the ruling Conservatives last week proclaimed their intent-to-legislate on this contrived controversy or that Muslim women already comply with face-revealing requirements to obtain a driver's licence or passport, the risk of a covered female face in a ballot booth was so horrifically galling, two federal parties raced to put their name on its prohibition.
This may be a valid point, were it not for the inconvenient fact that covered "female" faces in the ballet booth is just another avenue for massive voter fraud, as was apparently commonplace amoung Sikhs in BC's lower mainland in 2000. If huge numbers of people are finding ways to vote in elections when they may not even be legally entitled to do so, don't be shocked to find that actual voters take great offense to this.
In the scramble for a purified and cleansed Quebec identity, various politicians are proposing or mulling over a shocking series of democratic limitations on anglophones or "foreign nationals," including newcomers from the other nine provinces.

The right to run for office, vote in any election, even pick a neighbourhood to live in would be limited by a person's French-speaking prowess, if assorted proposals of highly questionable constitutionality come to pass.
And this would just be PQ politicos using the outrage of all citizens to this attack by foreign powers of dubious end-goals in order to further their own 300-year-old quarrel with "the English" who so cruelly failed to murder 70,000 losing Frenchman in 1759 as history now tells us they should have. Again, Martin misses the boat on this entirely.

A recent article in Nature calls to "forego the Kyoto protocol because the United Nations treaty has failed to bring about any significant action on climate change." What, the United Nations being ineffective about something? Quelle surprise! Yet the LIEberals, the Old Undemocratic Party, and the Blocheads all keep pressuring Harper to sign enthusiastically onto Kyoto and Kyoto II and Kyoto III and Kyoto XXVI as they come, damn whatever side-effects may occur. For this, I defer to the Prime Minister:
It is now widely understood that, because of inaction on greenhouse gases over the last decade, Canada's emissions cannot be brought to the level required under the Kyoto Protocol within the compliance period, which begins on Jan. 1, 2008

News roundup, part 1

Since K. Restoule didn't like the length of my last news roundup, this one I'll break into 3 smaller chunks, which should allow for (slightly) more commentary.

Report on Business has a story about the Alberta Oil Royalties. It starts out with the phrase "Ed Stelmach is not dumb enough to tax the oil industry into oblivion." "Ed Stelmach is an idiot" I wrote earlier today, and I stand by it. I notice that he didn't stand up against legal violations by Edmonton Police Services when he was their boss. Yet now he decides to re-write the revenue formula and piss off a bunch of oil companies who believed (naively, as it turned out) that the Alberta government would be true to their word. At work today a co-worker observed that already international investors were penning articles advising to stay out of Alberta where a programme supposedly in effect until 2016 gets altered Darth Vader-style halfway through the deal. Anyways, as the RoB article goes:

The Peter factor: He has been out of power for two decades, but Peter Lougheed still gets an audience. And the éminence grise of the Alberta Tory party has been warning for a while that the unfettered growth in the oil sands was too much, too fast, too hard on the environment, too rapid for the municipalities to cope.

Usually, it's easy for red-meat-eating conservatives to dismiss environmental complaints as the work of granola-crunching greens who should just hightail it back to British Columbia, where they belong. But it's much harder for them to dismiss Mr. Lougheed.
Where the hell has Derek DeCloet been the last twenty years? Conservatives have been dismissing Peter Lougheed since Ralph Klein's second election win in '97, and with good reason. The man is a menace.

Microsoft grabs a small piece of Facebook. The once-proud company of William Gates just paid a quarter-billion dollars for a 1.6% stake in a company that is basically a social-networking version of crack cocaine and made less money last year than Tim Hortons franchises made in Alberta. Yeah, wise move there.

A little notice might come in handy

I recently received this notice from the Alberta Alliance in my email:

Please listen to Paul and his response to the Premier’s new royalty regime

QR77 770am – Calgary

630Ched 630am - Edmonton

Jonathon W. L. Iverson
Alberta Alliance Opposition
Legislative Assembly of Alberta
401 Legislature Annex
9718 - 107 Street
Edmonton, Alberta. T5K 1E4
Telephone: 403 427-6598
Fax: 403 644-7196
Email: jonathon.iverson@assembly.ab.ca
Sounds all well and good, right? Well, take a peek at the headers:
Subject Alberta Alliance Leader Paul Hinman on Rutherford show at 11:30pm
From View message header detail Jonathon Iverson
Date Friday, October 26, 2007 11:21 am
To Randy Thorsteinson
Received from mail.assembly.ab.ca ([]) by l-daemon (Sun ONE Messaging Server 6.0 HotFix 1.01 (built Mar 15 2004)) with ESMTP id <0JQJ00AED47QZV90@l-daemon>; Fri, 26 Oct 2007 11:21:27 -0600 (MDT)
Date Fri, 26 Oct 2007 11:21:19 -0600
Message-id <7E6B45451A783D4281CA562D654121D904783509@hapy.lao.local>
MIME-version 1.0
X-MIMEOLE Produced By Microsoft Exchange V6.5
Content-type multipart/alternative; boundary="----_=_NextPart_001_01C817F4.9F3AC1D9"
Content-class urn:content-classes:message
Thread-topic Alberta Alliance Leader Paul Hinman on Rutherford show at 11:30pm
Thread-index AcgX9KCU/GKCOKVRR82tzJ1oC2JW8Q==
Excuse me one moment...

Friday morning at 11:21 am?????? Why would you email people at 11:21am about a radio interview that was approximately nine minutes away? I mean seriously, ever heard about "lead time"?

Update, 8:48pm: I almost forgot to mention that this was the first email! The following arrived four minutes later...
Subject Correction on time for Paul Hinman radio interview, 11:30 am, five minutes
I actually missed all the "11:30pm" references, partly because I knew that Rutherford was on in the morning. This is even worse, I'd submit.

July 28, 1980 (Miami)

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
- George Santayana
Ed Stelmach is an idiot.

In the wake of the announcment of the new royalty program yesterday, I don't think I can say anything on the matter more poignantly than Claudia Cattaneo's column today in the Financial Post:
Under the new policy, the province appears to have has shrugged off its potential to be a global energy leader and opted instead for mediocrity, bigger government and an adversarial relationship with the sector that has lined its pockets.

It's a deal that places Alberta alongside the hydrocarbon-rich Banana Republics of this world - places like Kazakhstan, Venezuela and Ecuador - where deals are ripped up and promises broken.

If you want proof that this was a bad idea, look at the identities of all the bloggers who either support this or believe Stelmach didn't punish those evil oil companies enough for the crime of buoying our provincial economy:
La Revue Gauche
Troy's Scribbles

Update, October 27 2007 12:07am: Plawiuk linked to Ken Chapman's gushing over Stelmach's screwup. Anybody who still talks to Bill Hunter rather than stroking firearms menacingly at him is clearly the last person you want to hitch your horse to.


More Babelfish Fun

So Babelfish again comes in handy, transcribing this blog's review of America Alone by Mark Steyn into English. Sort of:

Here still a book which treats difficulties to which is confronted the Occident, in a thought rather close to Threat In Europe. The complete title is in fact: AMERICA ALONE: THE END OF THE WORLD HAVE WE KNOW IT

Written by the American journalist néo-conservative Mark Steyn, the principal thesis is that the whole of the Western countries is in prey with a decline such as the USA will only be found in the near future.

The reasons given are:
- massive immigration "of the south" with refusal which been obstinated of the newcomers to be assimilated,
- differential of birthrate enters "of stock" and the newcomers (and coldly arrived),
- autoflagellation and multiculturalism making lose with the Westerners any confidence in themselves and any instinct of safeguarding,
- social democrat State déresponsabilisant the individual.

The author presents to which point Islam conqueror became an existential threat for our companies, in particular by the demography and the will of conquest.

Native of Toronto in Canada, Steyn is as critical towards Canada as towards Europe, as it puts in the same bag of the debilitating social-democracies.

Demography is a central thême of this book and the author does not balk with the simple examples to show at which point it is fondamententale: thus it in the form of semi-joke explains which one has more chances to carry out a victorious revolution with 2 million men than with a handle. Obvious? Simplistic? Perhaps, but why then demography isn't more often evoked? Consequently the majority of the countries of Western Europe, Are and Russia are denounced as with the anguish. Steyn is also ironical about what it calls the "écochondriaques ones", terrorized by the climatic changes whereas we do not make any more children to see them.

Mark Steyn nevertheless tends clearly to see midday with its American door. Concerning the birthrate, the US ones post a "score" of 2,1 children per woman, figure making it possible at least to maintain its population, higher than the European and Canadian figures. It returns several times the load with this relative performance, while knowing that it is in good part due to the birthrate of the latinos. In the same way if it denounces the harmful influence of the wahhabism near the Moslems of the whole world, it is hardly delayed on the good persistent agreement between the US ones and Saudi Arabia, that it regrets nevertheless.

The politically correct jargon of the media takes some for its rank. Thus it asks whether the "young people" about which one speaks in France prénomme Pierre, Jacques, Marcel or Alphonse...

This book is really politically incorrect to employ a galvaudé term. It is written in an even slang rather familiar language, with many, easy way flashes of wit and pun (I had in louper: - (. All serious even dramatic that it is, one is found with smiling or even bursting of laughing with its reading.

If that isn't confusing enough, take a look at the comments:
As you underline it, it sees midday with its door, because that does not go very well over there either. Universalization the key too.

Writing by: Stephane | 22.10.2007

Universalization is not the subject of this book nor of this note.
One speaks about it already enough like that!

Writing by: Proton | 23.10.2007

I.e. for me the phenomena which Mark Stein describes are consequences of universalization.

In short, for my opinion, to solve them, it is necessary to cease universalization "maelstrom civilisationnel". If not, that will continue.

Writing by: Stephane | 23.10.2007

To my humble opinion, American will be victims of the same "evolutions" as those which await us. Same causes involving the same effects. With this close that they remain basically patriotic, which they the same islamist problem, that they do not have "profit" from a complex on-powerful militaro-industrialist and hold between their hands the world economy by the means of the dollar. It does not remain about it less than all that is very fragile (démographiquement and economically) and than if Europe breaks down, States will not be long in following...

Writing by: CCRIDER | 23.10.2007

And if Europe and States break down, I am not convinced that the rest of the world will be well carrying either!

Writing by: Stephane | 24.10.2007

While looking at the chart of the world of the visitors of this blog, I realiserealises which it is frequente by a great number of alive French has the etranger (of which I make party).

At the time of my departure (1991) only 50 000 French per annum left the hexagon counters approximately 200 000 in 2006. One year ago Lang Jack affirmed that one needed regulariser office the 700 000 clandos on the French ground to compensate for the exile of the nationals... More comic one article of Libe compared French of the etranger with noble the emigres has London during terror revolutionnaire... Seriously since Revocation of the Edict of Nantes which entraina the escape of the French Protestants, it does not have there equivalent in the French history of such an exodus of young, adventurous population and well formee.

I have the paradoxical impression that the problems of declin and national loss of identite jump to the eyes of the French emigres but are completely ignore by the gross majorite our compatriots. The doctors are formal: one cannot look after a patient who refuses considerer badly revolves it of sound. And what is valid for an individual is also for a country...

Writing by: Raspoutine | 25.10.2007

They are rather funny these Raspoutine meters.
I put in 1 the 1st time that of the collar of right-hand side: quantitative report/ratio of 3 on average with the daily meter of hautetfort (+ generous)...
Then I more recently added that of left, it seems to give intermediate values to the 2 others!
In more the 2 geographical meters the same origins do not give completely, some pass on one but not on the other and I am not sure that it is coherent with the quantitative difference.
One does not go râler at the price of the meter of blogist but it is nevertheless bizaroïde.
I think that there must be technical explanations but for what I include/understand there.
There is bcp connections of Am. North since qlq days, not difficult to guess that my last note (with google) there is for much.

Concerning the bottom of your Com. the English have fun of what they call it + great French immigration in England since... William the Conqueror.
For the differences in perception, I think that there is like principal reasons:
- media and their purring,
- the fact of being "inside" and "all the time": an external and noncontinuous observation makes it possible to see things to which the buildings are accustomed imperceptibly.

Writing by: Proton | 25.10.2007


You should know basic math before studying nuclear weapons

It is simply not possible for Iraq to have no nuclear program AND a "huge" underground program AND bomb-making material so dangerous it should have been seized immediately after the coalition gained control.
Lorne Gunter takes on the International Atomic Energy Agency.


Speaking of those worthless sacks of excrement which make up the average NDPer...

Remember a couple posts ago when I made a rabble.ca joke?

It's not so funny now:

In discussing the Saskatchewan election on the forum, Potts wrote on Oct. 15 that Wall's father John, a Swift Current city councillor who owns some low-rent properties in the city, was putting his son's campaign signs on the rental properties.

About 10 hours later, Potts followed up with this post: "Further to my previous point, there is a Brad Wall sign (rental property) on a known crack house."
According to a Saskatchewan Party news release, John Wall does not currently own any rental properties - a fact of which Potts said he was not aware. Potts said he had no intention of linking the two posts, and was just trying to raise the issues of affordable rental properties and drug abuse in Swift Current.

If that wasn't enough to liven up your day, here's a reminder why you should do as I'm doing tonight: rewatching Lethal Weapon 2.

So wonderful I had to check the calendar

Jack Layton wants the Liberals to have fewer seats than his party:

OTTAWA - A small army of New Democrats has descended on the nation's capital to map out a new strategy to cripple the Liberals and Bloc Quebecois in order to become the main alternative to Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservative party.
I can't help but agree! I didn't realize it was late December already.


Mega-huge-giant-super-omega newspaper rundown!!!

(No, this isn't Stephen Notley's blog, why do you ask?)

A store in Newfoundland is restricting student customers due to theft, and maybe the theory that the little brats should be in school learning grammar:

"They're letting like five teenagers at a time, but they're letting like adults go in," said Jeanette Tourout.

The Nobel Prize in Physics has been awarded, for something you've actually heard of: iPod hard drives. Again, tragically, I wasn't even nominated for my work on the mathematical modelling of acquaintences on public transit.

It's the thin edge of the wedge: YouTube ads. So much for the back-compatibility dreams of the modem crowd.

It's hard to write a good newspaper op-ed. Including Teddy Ruxpin is always a start.

Earlier today Britney Spears was awarded partial visitation of her children. Meanwhile, she's in danger of losing her dog.

Low-to-middle-income file download criminal Jammie Thomas is the new face of the martyred file downloader. Too bad the martyr is so bad-for-sympathetic-TV-coverage ugly. Don't think the RIAA went after her on purpose, when some cute college girl is out there somewhere.

Sony has dropped the price of a PS3 in Japan. A bit silly, since Japan is the one place that the PS3 is doing so well. Microsoft dropped the Xbox 360's price as well.

It's time to close down all those blood banks: turns out the blood is next to useless.

Turks are jerks: that was the overriding theme in my head when I read this article.

Google has invaded campus. There may be no escape.

Hey, a brief aside here: have you ever looked at Google News's Canadian page? Now check out the French Canadian page...notice all the "Canada" stories are about events in Quebec only? (and creepily enough, you're noticing this at likely a different day and time than I am).

Hey, speaking of those Frog morons, did you hear they're building a giant mall that will dwarf West Edmonton Mall as the largest on the continent? A huge retail shopping centre in the locale with the highest sales tax in North America and the weakest economy...well how could that go wrong?

This article on Ontario traffic fatalities wouldn't catch my notice were it not for the highly literate "defense" of the victims:
U dnt know these 2 guyz. The roads were wet . . . .These are two guys cut from a good family. They woodnt do something like this. The media and ppl like u jump up and scream street race. Steve was pulling out to pass, right?

I can already hear the laughter from Calgary Flames fans...
Edmonton, with its ravines and river valley, is feminine. Calgary, with its Husky Tower, is masculine.

The poorly-named Federal Building is probably the Legislature compound's ugliest. So naturally there's a scheme to make it look even worse.

What do you do if you're a corrupt member of Edmonton Police Services, the most corrupt and criminally behaved police department this side of New Orleans? Reclassify bribes as severence and retire en masse.

Edmonton's Riverdale Community League has decided to go carbon neutral. Just for fun, roar up and down their neighbourhood in a muscle car on the coldest day of the year. I promise they'll all shut off their furnaces. I'm sure they all mean what they say...

Another energy company vows to pull out of Alberta if the royalty rate changes. Any reason the media keeps calling this a "threat"?

So does Ottawa know what it can and cannot do? Does the CBC know what Ottawa can and cannot do? Then how do you explain this story?
The groups are calling on Ottawa to lobby U.S. senators to try to stop the proposed law from passing. The federal government cannot launch an official challenge until the law goes into force.
Agriculture Canada officials were not available for comment. The government has written the U.S. government to formally oppose the plan.
How do you "formally" place an unofficial challenge?

Artists are stupid. They all deserve what they get.

I once saw this on an episode of Pointman starring Jack Scalia. It was far cooler when he did it. Dude competed with Brosnan for the ladies in Remington Steele for crying out loud!

Another site more interesting for its comments.

Free Radiohead! No, they aren't in jail or anything (Naomi Wolf must have started hyperventilating when she first read this title), they're selling their album for as much (or as little) as you want to pay. Since its not Kid A, any number you pick is too high.

Ever been given the gold medal slap on the wrist?

"Little Mosque on the Prairie," a Canadian hate crime against well meaning Saskatchewan residents who object to an evil society moving in on their doorstep, is getting the Search for Common Ground Award. My opening paragraph is so much more accurate than theirs, isn't it?

Police can't sing. At least, not when its their own catalogue.

They're going ahead with this stupid Starfleet Academy prequel Star Trek series. Don't blame me when it sucks as much as I've warned over the past decade that it would.

A major Hollywood scandal has erupted after Warner Bros. head Jeff Robinov expressed a concern over women's drawing power in movies. Sexist, chauvinist, blah blah blah. But is he wrong?

"The treaty has given the autonomous government control over use, development and sale of the lands. So far, she said, logging, mineral exploration and highway construction have taken place without consultation or compensation to the clans to whom they rightfully belong. "They have broken the sacred laws of the Nisga'a people. The law says that you cannot infringe on the lands that belong to each tribal group," she said. "You cannot take their lands away. You cannot take their songs or dances or crests away and yet that's what they did."
So she wants the treaty abolished, and real democratic reform brought in, right? Er, no, she wants to be the dictator, not live under him:
Mercy Thomas, who goes by her matriarchal name Nisibilada, said that at stake for her people are human rights and proprietorship of Nisga'a territory, which is passed down through the generations according to a matriarchal system of clans.

Houston, we have a derka derka.

No Chrysler agreement says the New York Times. Guess what happened the next day?

I did mention that EPS is 100% corrupt, right? That Edmonton City Police are either all on the take or all covering up for those on the take, and that they enjoy brutally stepping on the rights of the people they claim to be protecting? I hope you didn't think I was exaggerating.

Mike Nickel is sadly off Edmonton's City Council. And the quote halfway down the page from Nyambura Belcourt, who thankfully didn't win a seat, is frightening. If that isn't bad enough, look at this ever-chilling look into the future.

Top story in the Globe and Mail was about Toronto's municipal library policies. Any wonder I posted this comment on Colby Cosh's blog entry about regionalism in the Western Standard?

Putin lied, people died? How come acting in the Soviet's self interest is never so viciously attacked?

This headline has much different implications than a similar headline just 5 short years ago.

Fear not ye gentle socialists. The Toronto Star hasn't forgotten about its other favourite dictator!

As I mentioned on Scuffy Dan's blog, nobody with any sense cares about the Nobel Peace Prize.

Even hot New Zealand girls aren't against kicking a shark's ass. (Effeminate husbands are another story)

It's a good start.

Is Jack Layton next? Would the rabble.ca crowd even object?

Remember when Garth Turner bragged about being such a bold political maverick who marched to the beat of his own drummer, who's constituents and conscience combined to make him a man unwilling to take orders? He sure doesn't:"and the leader is listening to all voices" says Mr. Turner. Invasion of the Body Snatchers anyone? [How did political discourse function before that flick came out, anyways? -ed]

An idiot speaks about stupid awards.

The National Lacrosse League has shut down due to labour difficulties. $14,000 average annual salary and you can't operate? Quick Donair manages to survive while paying less than that!

Real deep conservative roots, eh? Is that why Nova Scotia's been on the dole since most of her residents could vote?

Anybody make any sense of this phrase in an article about Universal Music trying to promote non-iPod MP3 players? "The big question is whether the makers of music players and phones can charge enough to cover the cost of baking in the subscription."

Two very different articles about the same survey:
1) Canadian Murder Rate Plunged in 2006 on Fewer Gun Homicides
2) Homicide rate drops in 2006, but other violent crimes on the rise

A B.C. company has made unreasonable demands to its workers: Stop piloting fast ferries while high.

"Dion not an idiot". The most praise the Globe and Mail can bring itself to give Harper is that he placed Dion in a situation where he could have done a stupid thing and didn't.

It's called sucking with cancer, Maple Leaf fans!

Water on Mars? Either that or anthrax...

Neil Young sucks.

When you're a Liberal, the lies start sometimes before you even join. Look at Marc Garneau: "Only two weeks ago, Garneau had announced he was quitting politics, saying he didn't seem to be part of Dion's vision." Now, already, comes the flip-flop: I am a Liberal. I believe in the great Liberal values of this country and I am here to make sure that I will defend and bring forward all of those values so that Canadians, who I believe line up with Liberal values in this country, will stand behind us in the future.

The French President married the once French woman on the globe who doesn't obsess over being in the limelight (the universal dream).

Elliot Friedman talks tough about Buffalo. It's hard to read/watch Elliot Friedman trying to be tough on anything...

What do you do if you're the Premier of Saskatchewan? Your biggest achievement is opening a mill. Did he use a really big pair of scissors, or did Miss America not have the chance to send them over?

I call it Centre of the Universe Syndrome: Golden Triangle events catapult "local news" into the nation's eye. See the library comment from earlier in this post.

The last thing this poor universe needs is another fucking Trudeau.


Your humour column of the day

5 things feminism still needs to do for me and all women.

Oh, wait... is that chicky-poo serious?

Rebellion (Lies)

Yes, this is now the second time in a week that I've used this Arcade Fire song as a blogpost title. This time, it may be slightly more accurate. This is what I get for not actually caring much about Arcade Fire.

But fellow Edmonton blogger Colby Cosh is very concerned for AF's lead singer, as this post about a recent Arcade Fire appearance with Bruce Springsteen indicates. He writes (emphasis mine):

I don’t suppose Win Butler could really turn this opportunity down. But personally, I gotta say I wouldn’t let my super-adorable wife/accordionist anywhere near Bruce Springsteen in mid-tour.
There's no accounting for taste, I suppose.

When another blogger drops the hot-girl chalupa, I guess I've got to step up to the plate.


Rebels with a politically-correct cause

Tonight I heard for the first time on the radio the new Papa Roach single "Forever". I'd heard it in the background in other places before, but this was the first time I was able to hear it without distraction.

Well, except for all the blank parts of the song where 100.3 The Bear censored out the bad bits. This station used to play Buck Cherry's "Lit Up" without a single censored word at 5 o'clock in the afternoon.

Now, you are forced to endure:

Sitting by a fire on a lonely night
(awkward silence) from another good time
With another girl… little dirty girl
You should listen to this story of a life
You’re my (awkward silence) -in this moment I’m lonely fulfilling my darkest dreams
All these (awkward silence) all these women
I’m never forgiven… this broken heart of mine
So what are the real lyrics?
Sitting by a fire on a lonely night
Hanging over from another good time
With another girl… little dirty girl
You should listen to this story of a life
You’re my heroine-in this moment I’m lonely fulfilling my darkest dreams
All these drugs all these women
I’m never forgiven… this broken heart of mine
They. Censored. Hangover.

Heroin and drug use lyrics censored? From a band named after a joint? Forget K-Rock: What the hell happened to the bad-asses at The Bear?

2007 Baseball season review that doesn't mention Colorado

(er, except for the title)

The blogosphere has been demanding to know how my teams did in fantasy baseball this year. Well, now I can tell you:

Team "Ted Morton is the Man" finished 5th/12 in its semi-private league playoffs, following a 4/12 showing in the regular season. This is the one where the asshole commissioner changed the draft time pretty much 10 minutes after I (the final team) joined the league. I suspect that he and his friends (the other 11 teams) coordinated this all by phone, so I missed most of the draft. I really wanted to win this one and rub it in their face. Too bad I, you know, lost track of the team and didn't adjust the matchups for those final two weeks. This was a huge team (lots of positions), with Prince Fielder, Khalil Greene, Carl Crawford, Matt Holliday, Kevin Kouzmanoff, Rich Aurillia, Joe Mauer, Octavio Dotel, Trevor Hoffman, Jared Weaver, and Brian Fuentes.

Team "Alberta Mariners" did about as well as the team with this name does every season: 12/12 at the end of the regular season, and winless in the playoffs for a final tally of 12/12. Not fun. This team consisted of the likes of Prince Fielder, Julio Lugo, Coco Crisp, Billy Wagner, Bronson Arroyo, Jeff Francoeur, Willy Taveras, Scot Shields, Mariano Rivera, Milton Bradley, and Jeff Suppan.

In thrilling action, Team "Royal Alberta Navy" finished 3rd out of 12th in the regular season and held on to a 3rd place finish in the playoffs: finishing 5-3-2 in the semifinals (insufficient offense) kept the team out of the championship match. The Royal Alberta Navy included players like Rickie Weeks, Bengie Molina, J.D. Drew, Hanley Ramirez, Zach Duke, Jonathon Papelbon, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Jake Peavy, Brandon Inge, and Adam LaRoche.

In our buddy league, the aptly-named "PossiblyMayNotBe1st" finished 7/8, pulling out of 8th place in the final few days of the season. Painful, but to be expected I suppose when your team includes Adam Dunn, Corey Hart, Julio Lugo, Ramon Hernandez, Gary Matthews Jr., Brade Hawpe, Chris Capuano, Brandon Webb, Justin Germano, and Esteban Loaiza.

Better luck to all my teams next year.


CFRN: Your source for sodomist-free-reduced news

Michael "2/3rds of the people I work with would pay money to see you gored by an ox" Phair isn't done torturing us with his musical-theatre-loving nasally-enhanced tone. A friend reminds me via IM not to watch Global Edmonton tonight, as the fairie himself will be doing "commentary".

CFRN seems the safer choice for those who'd rather not see transsexuals trying to pass off their bile as informed commentary. Though the strikethrough in the post is deliberate, as the jury is still out on Joss Classen.


Edmonton Civic Election 2007

Since so many of you have been clamouring for it, I present a rundown of the 2007 mayoral and councillor candidates.

Ward 1: A small tight race, featuring Liberal Linda Sloan, who hopefully loses her seat, and occasionally intelligent Karen Leibovici, who less hopefully loses hers. Andrew Knack supports the Canadian Taxpayer Federation, so he's obviously the choice, even though he supports the criminally corrupt Edmonton Police Service for unknown reasons. Betty Kennedy is an unknown, so I'd prefer Leibovici over her.

Ward 2: Ron Hayter has been a city councillor since about 1836, and should be re-elected just because of plank #9 on his manifesto: "I do not support city funding to replace Rexall Place and I do not support either of the proposed designs for the city’s highway entrance signs." Kim Krushell is a woman and uses flash on her website. I'm iffy on Dave Loken, and have heard nothing from Jabin Caouette or Shelley Tupper, so I guess I'll suggest Kerry Hutton, who's scary but at least is worried about roads.

Ward 3: Yay home base! This is also the wired slate, so its easy to look these people up. Kyle Balombin wants more money for the corrupt EPS, so he's a scratch. Tony Caterina likewise gets a hardon for more bribe-taking cops on Edmonton's streets. Ed Gibbons already has my vote, some business saavy in a very un-businessmenlike neighbourhood. Chris Martin is an artist who works with the CBC, so three guesses how fast his pamphlet hit the garbage (and its your WIFE dumbass, not your PARTNER). Harvey Voogd worked for Michael Phair, so that poofter-lover isn't a viable candidate. Shiu Wing Mak and Chris Rohers have had relatively quiet campaigns. Better the devil you know, so I guess vote for Thomas Tomilson.

Ward 4: I feel really sorry for the poor denizens of this sprawling ward, they have some of the worst choices for council (though none as bad as that notorious sodomist Michael Phair).
Jane Batty - Ol' Batty Jane is hoping we all remember her name and forget what she did on council. Pass.
Ben Henderson - "Who is Ben Henderson?" asks his campaign literature. He's Mrs. Laurie Blakeman. That's all you need to know.
Debbie Yeung - Well known NDPers have been campaigning for her...so she'll probably win. She shouldn't.
Well, okay, Ward 4 has tons of candidates, and I'm getting bored: don't vote for Lewis Cardinal or Brent Thompson ["Ward 4 has a huge homeless problem. THESE ARE THE PEOPLE I AM REPRESENTING!" er, no, you're representing homeowners... -ed]. Hana "fair trade" Razga is to be avoided like the plague as well. Likewise Adil Pirbhai (Ralph-hater), and Deborah Peaker (CBC gasbag). Brian Wissink and...oh, hell, why not Nyambura "I seem harmless enough" Belcourt. Dear God I'm glad this isn't my Ward.

Ward 5: Mike Nickel is running for re-election, and for heaven's sake Ward 5 please vote him back in! Brent Michalyk is pro-photo radar and anti-pesticide...definitely a man in tune with Edmonton's problems! Don Iveson worked for the UofA's Students' Union regarding the stupid transit pass, so take a "pass" on him! This leaves "Mostly Harmless" Bryan Anderson.

Ward 6: Chuck McKenna is corny, but just might work. Chinwe Okelu is a definite go-to-guy, even if his name is too much like the evil Alliance Operative in Serenity. Lori Jeffery-Heaney wouldn't even take her husband's last name, while Amarjeet Sohi seems preoccupied with rents. Dave Theile is, of course, one of council's more notorious leftwing idiots, and Tomas Dennis Vasquez looks like the name you'd make up while on the lam. McKenna and Okelu it is, I suppose.

Stephen Mandel - Okay, our incumbant idiot has already been roasted by Andy Grabia, need I do any more? The guy created a Poet Laureate for the city. He should be burned at the stake for this alone.
Dave Dowling - This guy's not bad, but any moment now you expect him to go off about the Jews.
Don Koziak - This is the Mandel-killer. He's a pretty good candidate, knows how to speak, and has no chance in hell of winning. Sorry.
George Lam - He's a Lutheran Civil Engineer. I knew a guy who programmed in Pearl and had a beard. About as scary.
Peter T. Lefaivre - A redneck running for City Council. I can respect that.
Robert Ligertwood - I hope he gets his deposit back. Maybe.
Bill Whatcott - This is my endorsement for mayor. God may not hate fags, but Whatcott does, and that's good enough. With any luck we'll get him as mayor and the two ass-piracy pride parades can move along.

Good luck everybody! Well, except for the ones I don't want to win. Screw off and die.

Update, 10:21pm: Daveberta is already reviewing Ward 2, Ward 4, Ward 3, Ward 1, and Ward 5. Of particular note, he complains about Debbie Yeung in Ward 4 despite the NDP connection, and notes that Margaret Saunter was part of the Christian Heritage Party. In Ward 5 he gives more reasons not to vote for Don Iveson. Ward 3's Tony Caterina turns out to have NDP links of his own, so my instinct not to vote for him was a strong one.


More from the 2007 MLB Division series

Please don't remind me about this post, seeing how my Cubbies were the first team to be swept.

But not the last. Boston (as predicted) won today, and Colorado won in 3 as well. Only the Bronx Bombers are holding out to make a series out of it.

It was also the day to clear up some confusion: I had thought that the best of five was alternating between cities from game to game, starting with the team with the best record (or the non-wild card). So it would go Cleveland, New York, Cleveland, New York, Cleveland. That was never actually the method: the winningest team gets 2 home games, then 2 away, and the 5th game at home: Cleveland, Cleveland, New York, New York, Cleveland. Before 1998, the disadvantaged team played their home games first: New York, New York, Cleveland, Cleveland, Cleveland.

Fireworks in Moose Jaw can be seen in Uranium City

Saskatchewan is flat jokes never go out of style.

And if you don't believe me, look at some of the wide-panned scenery in this YouTube video showing clips of Corner gas to the Tragically Hip's "Fireworks". (sorry that they don't let me embed.. why do people do that?)

The Ron Paul investigation continues, sorta, except I really don't care

My curiosity finally got the better of me [click the link at the least for the bonus comment of some anonymous guy calling our beloved author a 'putz' for...well, insulting Marc Emery? not sure why the small comment was deemed worth the effort -ed] and I decided to look up this "CFR" that Ron Paul was not a tool of (or was "humping", depending on the commenter).

And here it is: the Council on Foreign Relations. Okay, I wasn't expecting that at all.

I'm not exactly sure what the big knock against the Council is supposed to be here. Ron Paul isn't a member of it, but the last 3 Presidents were. More damningly, I suppose, is that several current nominees are also members, specifically:

Four former/current Senators, and a Governor. Romney is a bit of a black sheep in this list for sure (sorry, Barry), but it doesn't seem at all odd that some prominent members of the U.S. Senate are members of an organization which has 4,300 members dedicated to "promoting understanding of foreign policy and America’s role in the world" (or at least, 4300 people who like being able to put that phrase on their resume).

The gag from Ron Paul and his cohorts seem to be that the Council (and the Trilateral Commission) is a secret cabal that picks one of its own to positions of prominance to encourage their goals. This seems on the face of it to get the cause-and-effect completely backwards: people of prominance like to join councils and commissions to get the latter to believe in their own goals.

The best is perhaps Ron Paul's comments on the subject as quoted on the page linked to above:
I'm not a member of any secret society...I haven't been invited by the Trilateralists of CFR (Council on Foreign Relations). I don't get to go to their meetings.
First off, how "secret society" can the Trilateral Commission or the CFR really be if, well, Ron Paul knows about them? Secondly, how does one get to join the CFR? The Wikipedia page on the Council lists some of the prominant members who seem to be quite wide-ranging on the political and success spectrum. George Soros and Paul Wolfowitz, Thomas Friedman and Conrad Black, Angelina Jolie and Irving Kristol...if all these people can become members, what's stopping Ron Paul? He said "I don't get to go to their meetings", but could he not join and show up to the meetings if he so desired? You can be anti-social all you like, but if its your call you can't play the outcast card. Sorry Ron, but that's how it works.

Surprise surprise, the Wikipedia page dedicated to the Council on Foreign relations is in the midst of an edit war. Ron Paul's supporters aren't just kooks on message boards over at the Western Standard. (Sample response: "Can we get a reliable [i.e. non-conspiratorial] link to an article that details plans for an American Union which WASN'T written by someone who's batshit insane?"--Baltech22)

And if the CFR is really so wide-ranging and powerful, why was poor Conrad Black so viciously attacked by the U.S. government? Sure he's a former member, but didn't he pay his dues on time or something? That's the problem with this conspiracy theory: with so many prominent people as members, some will become very successful, and others will fail. The successes are trumpeted, the failures ignored, and a bunch of lunatics are easily swayed.


Yes, Manager

Jim Hacker: Perhaps, uh, next century?
Sir Humphrey: Well, you could still be Prime Minister next century...
Jim Hacker: Well the one after that.
Sir Humphrey: Yes, Prime Minister!

This is the sort of feeling we Chicago Cubs fans are forced to endure around this time of year. Apparently we need to rig the World Series in order to win it...


Something here just isn't quite adding up

Ezra Levant posted today:

To my deep regret, the Western Standard has decided to stop publishing our print edition.

It's a purely financial decision. Even though our advertising revenues were stronger than ever, with marquee brands like GM, Mazda, BMW and Air Canada filling our pages, and even though we had the most loyal subscribers in the business, with an unheard-of 80% renewal rate, we just weren't close enough to profit.

I offer my thanks to our amazing staff, our loyal investors, and our enthusiastic subscribers, all of whom showed great faith in our project. Our online presence will continue for now in the form of this blog at least; when I spoke recently with our senior columnist, Mark Steyn, about our financial difficulties, he suggested ramping the website up into a Canadian version of Townhall or a conservative version of the Huffington Post. It's an idea worth considering.

We were unable to generate a financial rate of return, but we had an enormous moral rate of return. From our very first edition, back in March of 2004, we had a disproportionately large impact on the national discussion. It's tough to pick favourites out of the 82 editions that we published, but some of the highlights for me were our investigative report into Power Corp. and its political influence; the Libranos edition; and, of course, our publication of the Danish cartoons, and our follow-up issue on the same subject. Even our blog had great moments, including when we leaked the Liberal Red Book in the last election.

The common thread to all of those stories was our editorial independence. No magazine owned by a corporate colossus could do such digging on the Desmarais family without a friendly phone call, CEO to CEO, to call off the story -- as happened to the Montreal Gazette. And no magazine -- or TV station, or newspaper -- felt able to publish the Danish cartoons, either. Whether they were smothered by general corporate caution, or ideological correctness, it fell to a little magazine in Calgary to take the risk. I hope that the fact that we neither suffered physical nor financial harm for doing so serves as encouragement to other media in the future to resist radical Muslim calls for censorship. One of the only stories I wrote for the magazine was our rationale for publishing those cartoons. It can be found here, and the human rights commission's attack against us, and my response, can be seen here.

Speaking of that human rights attack, the official "investigation" is scheduled to commence against us next month. I spoke with our lawyers today, and there ought to be no reason why we still cannot fight the complaint against us -- and the commission's grotesque assertion that they even have jurisdiction over a magazine. I only regret that we will not be able to cover every proceeding of that kangaroo court in our print magazine.

I am proud of the team we assembled, ranging from seasoned pro's like Ted Byfield to the next generation of voices like Colby Cosh. Alumni of our magazine, including our former interns, are working at some of the most influential media in the country. What was so touching to me was that even our staff who worked in the non-editorial departments of our magazine looked at us as a mission, and loved our project as much more than just a job. I don't propose to name everyone, but I would like to single out Lyle Dunkley, our chairman, chief investor and greatest booster; Joe Nadler, a passionate and dear supporter; and Matthew Johnston, my co-pilot throughout the whole adventure.

Over the course of those 82 issues we printed 150 million pages of great conservative news and views, plus 40 million page views on our website, plus hundreds of hours on our various radio shows. We were also truly national -- with 20% of our readers in Ontario, and 19% in B.C. Those are impressive numbers, but it was the independent, tell-it-like-it-is quality that I'll remember.

Thank you to our entire extended family -- staff, subscribers and investors -- for an amazing project, the effects of which will continue to echo for years to come.
80% renewal rate, strong advertising, and what seems to be a not-hard-to-come-by audience (conservatives in Alberta...moreso, those with disposable incomes), and another right-wing mag in this province shuts its doors.

Meanwhile, Alberta Views has been feeding its vile to all 15 liberals left in Alberta (and every public library in the province) since 1998. There's an Alberta Oil Magazine, an Alberta Beef Magazine, Alberta Venture, and even The Alberta Game Warden Magazine.

Hell, the Alberta Magazine Publishers Association produces a list of member mags. Not only is there Alberta Oil Magazine but also Oilsands Review, Oilweek, and the Oil and Gas Inquirer. Yet nowhere in this list (including two magazines for natives, who at best would be 1/20th of Alberta's population) is there room for a conservative current-affairs magazine that is of interest to at least 1/3 of the population.

I guess the Air Canada decision was more costly than was thought. Who knew free speech would cost so much?

Google Maps: Censoring Fort Knox, the White House, and the Ruby???

View Larger Map

Why oh why is there a giant black pit apparently occupying the same place in Rouleau, Saskatchewan (home of CTV/WGN's hit Corner Gas) where the gas station and restaurant sets reside?

Update, 8:55pm: For some reason the map embedded above doesn't centre on what I wanted it to: this link rectifies that.


The roof! The roof! The roof is on fire!

Today, noted Albertan Conservative Icon and one of Feynman and Coulter's Love Child's personal heros, Ted Byfield, suffered a tragedy when his Edmonton home was destroyed by fire.

The Western Standard Shotgun has their take up, with only a small number of kooky comments.

Colby Cosh has a comment on the subject, while Kevin Michael Smith's blog has apparently gone black in sympathy.

Update, October 5 2007, 6:14pm: That would be Kevin Michael Grace, not Kevin Michael Smith, who's middle name is Patrick anyways.

News roundup

Just for fun today at work I spent some free time emailing myself interesting newspaper articles. Now I'll share them with you:

Kooks and lunatics and ruined threads

There's little else funnier than watching a thread go all weird. One of the better examples of this is recent:

Adam Yoshida posted a critical note about U.S. Presidential candidate Ron Paul on the Western Standard Shotgun blog yesterday. Almost instantly it began filling up with crazy cut-and-paste ads for Ron Paul, followed by personal attacks against Yoshida.

It started moderately crazy:

So, what's the problem?

What are you afraid of?

Grow a pair and become a real American.

Ron Paul is a real American. All the other candidates are CFR tools.

Posted by: Thom1776 | 3-Oct-07 10:54:21 PM
Then it got generally crazy:
This is a rather trashy piece of journalism.. Are you writing from Canada? or from mars? Look my good Canadian neighbor.. If the US caves-in - well you will be joining the party.. If you think that by giving the Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton cartel another 4 years to rape a nation will make it all better.. then it may be time to wake up from your slumber. Why do you resort to name calling of people who are intelligent enough to know right form wrong? Have you any idea what a monster this Clinton woman is? Do you beleive for one micro second that she has the best interest of the US at heart? Hello?

Posted by: mike | 3-Oct-07 11:18:22 PM
Hey Yoshi, when the Lucifer-worshipping CFR-humping power-freaky ghouls pay you in wads of cash to write this crap, don't go blow it all on crack and pink meth before you actually finish writing the piece. Words to live by.

Posted by: Dan Hollenbeck | 4-Oct-07 12:14:19 AM
This post just goes to prove the Canadian Conservatives is a figment of peoples imagination.
Ron Paul is by definition a Conservative and a true Republican.

Every person that says they are a Conservative or Republican who denounce Ron Paul are really neocons. And neocons are neither Conservative or Republican they are extremist who may as well be communist.

Posted by: sms | 4-Oct-07 12:35:17 AM
I am Canadian and I am ashamed that this is a Canadian journal. How can you as a fellow Canadian fall so low as to emulate the American main stream media. I live on the East Coast of Canada, please western Canadians, reassure me that this is an islolated piece of s**t in the western Canadian journals.

Posted by: Radwar99 | 4-Oct-07 12:41:29 AM

And then all hell broke loose and Marc Emery got involved:
Of all the betrayals in the conservative media, the Western Standard shows how filthy the hypocrisy can get.

The Western Standard is obsessively zionist, and schizophrenically teeters back and forth between foamy mouthed oil industry ass-kissing neo-con classism, racism and empire-building and yet it is occasionally buttressed by some of the best libertarian thinkers like Karen Selick and Pierre Lemieux.

Its animosity towards Islam is the result of Ezra Levant being publisher. He is Israel obsessed and hostile to Dr. Paul, because Dr. Paul won't be propping up oil kingdom Saudi Arabia (the Western Standard IS the oil industry, it is financed by an oil baron) or socialist and militarist Israel. President Paul would get out of Afghanistan and Iraq, which would break neo-con Levant's heart.

The audience for the Western Standard are largely Alberta Republicans who despise everything about Canada and can't wait for the Anschluss of Canada into the USA to become the oil supplying satrapy of Imperial America.

If Dr. Paul's vision of a constitutionally restricted federal government and free markets, individual liberty, no empire building, a humble foreign policy, security at home, a repeal of prohibition, all offer stability and prosperity for America.

Posted by: Marc Scott Emery | 4-Oct-07 5:32:51 AM
Then, just to prove that things could get still loopier:

I'm a 48 year old grandfather who's greatly appreciating the Ron Paul Presidential campaign! The BIGGER story however is, that Ron Paul has $5.3M cash on hand and that he's NOT going to take matching funds! Most political experts estimate the Ron Paul grass-roots army of 50,000+ of ever rapidly growing volunteers to be worth an extra $10+M/per month in campaign contributions! SO WAKE UP NEOCONS! America is sick and tired of "BIG Brother" government breathing down our necks and getting us involved in no-win, unconstitionally, undeclared "military-industrial" growth wars in the middle east plus the 130 other countries we have a presence in at the taxpayers expense of $1 TRILLION per year! I personally loathe working 5 months out of the year to pay my income tax obligation that's earmarked 100% for the "interest-only" payment on the $10 TRILLION National debt to the "ultra-private" Federal Reserve Banking Corporation! Of course, I detest our current "pack of beaurocrats" who are spending our tax dollars like "junkies waiting for their next fix!" I am however, extremely delighted as to the way Ron Paul has shown his frugal fiscal responsibility regarding his own personal campaign - Let's compare that with ANY other presidential candidates finances and review their "donations vs.. expenditures" ratios? Then ask yourself this important question - Who do you really want running our economy for the next 4-8 years? A fiscal conservative who thinks our dollars should be backed by something other than printing money out of "thin air" and who would replace the dreaded "Income Tax" with NOTHING! Or just the same 'ole same 'ole ...btw...FYI to MSM a point of clarification an ISOLATIONIST is the EXACT opposite of a NON-INTERVENTIONIST and Ron Paul is a NON-INTERVENTIONIST! Please for God Sake learn the difference, unless you're intentially misleading people. Also, while I'm on a roll - The term "Long Shot" for Ron Paul can gracefully be discarded in the compost pile of media bias and propaganda. This may be our last chance ... The choice is yours ... GOOGLE Ron Paul for yourself and get the WHOLE story on the man many believe to be an American Hero!!!

Best Ron Paul video - (Reply: WRONG!?Best Presidential Candidacy Video EVER!!!)

"None are more enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free."
-- Goethe

Posted by: chris lawton | 4-Oct-07 1:20:55 PM

At least there was one small voice of sanity reminding everybody how true Yoshida's original point was:
I have no idea who this Paul guy is so I entered this thread with an open mind. After reading the childish phrases, the vulgar language and the blantant anti-semitism from the keyboards of his so-called supporters, I don't want to know anything more about him. If this is an exemplification of his support base, then he is definitely one big loser.
Nice job Kids!

Posted by: atric | 4-Oct-07 10:40:45 AM

I suppose I could google this "CFR" thing they're talking about. Or just assume Ron Paul really hates the Canadian Finals Rodeo. That seems easier.