Sunday, July 31, 2011

"Will Kirstine Stewart save the CBC?"

The Globe and Mail did a nice little bio piece Saturday on the latest Vice President of CBC English program services Kristine Stewart, asking whether or not she can save the network. A fortune teller once predicted she'd become Prime Minister and she has already "taken out a layer of management". Aside from that, the highlight of her bio, she once dated George Strombolopolis and later gave him a reality TV show that was cancelled after two weeks. Just like her predecessor, Kristine is engaged to be married to CBC on air talent. Her current fiancee is the "star" of Little Mosque on the Prairie, so it might be a stretch to call him "talent", but I'll bet his show isn't cancelled anytime soon. Do I think she'll save the CBC? It's unlikely, but at least we're getting some acknowledgment that the CBC is heading in the wrong direction and in need of salvation.

Kristine's predecessor Richard Stursberg is married to Carole MacNeil (she was "moved" from her Sunday Show with Soloman to the big news desk not long after saying I do). Needless to say it is quite the family affair over at the public broadcaster. Evidently if you want to "hook up" with someone on CBC television (male or female), your best bet is to try and become a CBC executive.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Raise The Debt Ceiling, It Just Makes Sense

The United States needs to raise their debt ceiling. I was on the fence until watching this commercial...

Also, you may or may not like rap music, but if you are interested in this pending financial crisis, you might find this funny. I laughed so hard I cried.

Friday, July 29, 2011

When CBC Poll Questions Go Awry

Sometimes poll questions don't exactly turn out the way you expected; just as I'm sure the people over at the Solomon Show didn't expect what would happen yesterday when they asked "is it appropriate for the government to ask for the public's assistance in tracking down suspected war criminals?" Given that the CBC has been attacking the government for doing exactly that and defending their own policy not to publish the names or pictures of these individuals, you'd think their own audience might share a similar opinion, right? Wrong! 75% of CBC audience respondents agreed with the Sun News position that it is indeed appropriate for the government to ask for the public's assistance. Ouch!

But I'm sure the PR war isn't over. As of Friday night the only article on this story in the CBC politics section is "5th war crime suspect denies wrongdoing". Like we expect them all to confess and allow themselves to be deported. If they were willing to return to their home countries, they would have left when they were originally instructed to. They are trying to get refugee status, not found guilty and sent home. But hey, the CBC takes the word of Taliban combatants over the word of Canadian soldiers, so its not like they have any credibility on these matters. Evan Soloman was all over "torture-gate" with a vengeance. Je me souviens.

Is it appropriate for the government to ask for the public's assistance in tracking down suspected war criminals? 

Yes 74.52%
No 21.43%
Not sure 4.05%

Total Votes: 938

"Energy is climate change" - David McGuinty

The Canadian Minister of Natural Resources is in Washington promoting Canadian energy contracts, and Liberal MP David McGuinty is angry! He's upset that the Minister is even there, and he's upset that he's not there to discuss climate change. As he so succinctly put it "energy is climate change and climate change is energy". You shouldn't be allowed to talk about energy without holding a symposium on greenhouse gases. David didn't miss the chance to pump up his brother's controversial green energy program in Ontario, the success of which has yet to be determined. Today's poll question; is it acceptable for our Natural Resources Minister to travel to the United States to promote Canadian energy?

What Minister Oliver should be doing is talking about new fines and penalties we can levy on our dirty exports before they are shipped to the United States. Isn't that right David? Or would we be cool if we just bought billions of dollars in carbon offsets from Al Gore?

New NDP Leader Nycole Turmel Interview

Having recently watched the first interview I've seen with new NDP leader Nycole Turmel (on the Rosemary Barton Show), my first impression was how much she reminded me of Stephane Dion. That is if Stephane were female and answered most questions with some reference to big labour. I'm not trying to insult leaders who speak broken English, I'm just not sure it is the recipe for success outside of Quebec.

What are your early impressions of the new NDP leader?

She was likely chosen because she is unlikely to compete for the full-time job if Jack Layton is unable to return, allowing the deputies to vie for leadership. But if we come back in the fall and the female Stephane Dion has her hands on the steering wheel, that's not good for the NDP. Sure 60% of their seats are now in Quebec and they could permanently replace the Bloc, but Nycole Turmel will not translate positively nationally. She's a useful MP, but she's not going to increase NDP support outside of Quebec.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Green Party Fighting To End Wireless Internet

Look out WiFi, Elizabeth May is coming to get you! The Green Party is now fighting to end the destructive evil of wireless internet before it kills all our children and insects (those are the two demographics that Liz is most concerned about, children and insects). Today's poll question; should wireless internet be illegal? According to the World Health Organization electromagnetic frequencies are a "possible" human carcinogen. As a wireless internet user, I hope she's right so that I can sue the manufacturer for millions of dollars! While we're at it, we should also get rid of all cell phones and wireless devices. Your I-Phone might be killing butterflies. Let's go back to good old fashioned wires, stringing millions of miles of cords and cables throughout the country. Technology is evil. We might want to consider outlawing electricity, but I'm sure Elizabeth will take her crusade one step at a time.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Is Obama Scorching The Earth?

Tonight I was watching the Charles Adler Show on Sun TV News (on the Internet since Telus still doesn't carry Sun News in my cable package), and the theory was proposed that the President of the United States "wants a train wreck" on this debt ceiling issue so that he can blame financial collapse on the Republicans in the next election. While this is a clever theory and sounds nice, I have trouble believing that Obama is that stupid. If there is an economic collapse because congress and Obama could not agree on a settlement, guaranteed it will hurt Obama's chance at re-election. Congress has a more recent mandate from the people as the Democrats were dealt a devastating blow from voters. Obama is the one demanding more money than the American government can afford to spend, so if talks collapse he absolutely will receive a substantial amount of blame for what happened.

The only thing that makes sense to me is that Obama believes he has substantial political capital to spend after killing Bin Laden and he knows that Obamacare can't survive without substantially increasing how much the USA can go into debt. I don't think he's trying to scuttle negotiations in order to blame it on the Republicans, I think he's desperate to move forward with his spending policies and is willing to spend what political capital he has from killing Osama to make sure he can pay for Obamacare. If he is indeed trying to scorch the earth in order to blame his opponents, then he's an idiot. If the economy collapses, the sitting President cannot avoid responsibility for the catastrophe.

When I watched the video below, I laughed so hard that I cried....

Monday, July 25, 2011

Layton Steps Down, Mulcair Snubbed

Like every Canadian I would like to wish Jack Layton all the best in his latest battle with cancer and hope that he has a speedy and full recovery. He is stepping down as leader of the NDP, hoping to return to the position when his health has improved. Who will be replacing him as interim leader? Well it is not deputy leader Tommy Mulcair, which is great news for Canada. The new NDP leader is likely to be someone I've never heard of before Nycole Turmel, a rookie MP from Quebec. In the event that Jack is unable to return, the NDP is going to have serious problems when Parliament resumes if they are being led by someone who only has a few weeks experience in the legislature. That being said, they would also have serious problems under the leadership of a vitriolic conspiracy theorist like Mulcair, who will likely be seeking leadership should Jack's leave become permanent.

I would much rather have Jack Layton as NDP leader than any of the usual suspects like Libby Davies, Pat Martin, or Mulcair. Considering that the NDP is currently built on Layton's personal likability (especially in Quebec), anyone who might replace him will be unable to duplicate or expand the results from the last election. The loss of Jack's leadership would weaken his party, and perhaps make them more receptive to a merger with the Liberals.

Get well soon Jack.

NDP Quebec File Shredding Controversy

According to a Candian Press article on the CBC website, there seems to be "several" complaints by the 58 new NDP Quebec MPs that the outgoing MP they replaced shredded all their constituency files, leaving them with no information regarding ongoing issues in their ridings. This is apparently a very common practice in Ottawa, but is significant in this case because some Quebec NDP MPs have spent very little time in their ridings and likely have no idea what the local issues are. Because the NDP rookie caucus knows so little about the ridings they represent, this information is more critical than with parties who put greater thought and effort into candidate selection.

The article on the CBC website doesn't make any mention of just how many of the 58 Quebec NDP rookie MPs had their documents shredded, but they did provide two examples; 1) how an outgoing Conservative shredded files, and 2) how a Bloc Quebecois MP decided to leave behind all his files. They did mention that one Dipper (Borg) found a pile of shredded documents on an office table, but did not mention that it was in a Bloc riding. For the record, of those 58 new Quebec seats the Dippers won; about 90% of them came from the Liberals and Bloc. But there was no mention in the article about Liberal or Bloc MPs shredding their documents, even though they were likely the bulk of the cases. We don't know if outoing MPs like Marlene Jennings, Gilles Duceppe, or Pablo Rodriguez were among the shredders.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Should The Names Of Suspected War Criminals Be Published?

Today's poll question; should the names of suspected war criminals potentially hiding in Canada be made public? The CBC doesn't seem to want to publish them because they are only suspected rather than tried and convicted. Common sense might dictate that the names should be published so that we can increase the probability of capturing them, then again, we wouldn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. On Friday Evan Soloman was acting like these names were pulled out of a hat without any evidence or jurisprudence, though I would suspect that considerable time was spent investigating these individuals. It is quite common to release the names and photos of people wanted for criminal acts before they have been put on trial because it aids the police in capturing them in order to put them on trial. These "suspects" hiding in Canada will get the opportunity to defend themselves in a court of law if captured. Relax CBC, they aren't going to be dragged out and hung on the lawn of Parliament.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Evan Soloman Needs A Lesson On Crime Rates

Evan Soloman needs to learn the difference between a crime "rate" (per 100,000 people) and total volume of crimes. If you are going to have a debate about expanding prison capacity, you should not be citing crimes per 100,000 but rather total number of crimes. Why? Because our population grows by about 350,000 people every year, nearly doubling in size since 1962. Evan's big question today was if crime rates are declining, why would we spend money expanding prison capacity? First, let's disregard all the reports about how dangerously overcrowded our prisons currently are and just look at crime rates versus crime volume. I downloaded the same Statistics Canada data that Evan used (although he focused mostly on the last two years). For your viewing pleasure, I prepared two different charts comparing violent crime rates versus total number of crimes since 1991 and fit a trend line.

Oh my Lord, what kind of crazy Voodoo magic is this??? Simple answer, the violent crime rate has fallen by 15% since 1991. Great news right? Sadly, our population has grown by 19% over that same time period. You might have a smaller percentage of people committing crimes, but because our population keeps growing we actually have more criminals. What was Evan's question of the day today? You have to love how he started with "given dropping crime rates", because that's not a leading question at all...

Given dropping crime rates, should money pegged for prisons and the government's tough on crime agenda, be spent on other priorities?

yes 79%
no 19%
unsure 2%

Total Votes: 438

All that being said, the TOTAL number of violent crimes has fallen consistently every year since the Conservatives came to power in 2006, so they must be doing something right in their tough on crime agenda. It is working. If what the Tories have been doing has been working, why would we change course now?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

If You Could Access CBC Information...

Assuming that the CBC even responded to access to information requests about its cost expenditures, what would you most like to know if you could access their protected secret information? Would it be Terry Milewski's expense account, the cost of making any one of its crappy shows, how much they pay Kady O'Malley to sit on her couch watching television while "live blogging", or perhaps how much they paid Scott "beer and popcorn" Reid for those "point of order" segments on the Soloman Show? I'd like to know complete and detailed ratings information which I know the CBC keeps but doesn't publish, so we can cancel the shows that nobody is watching. This will be the subject of a future poll question after we've had some time to collect some feedback.

Wind Turbines On Juno Beach???

When I saw this story on the news, it felt like an April Fool's joke made in really bad taste. The same beach where Canadian soldiers landed on D-Day to help liberate Europe is set for the construction of a thousand new wind turbines courtesy of the government of France. A revered historical site is going to be littered with a thousand giant spinning turbines? Gee won't that be a lovely backdrop for our future D-Day commemorative ceremonies. What else can I say? This is ridiculous. Show some gratitude for your freedom France. Build your wind farm somewhere else.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

"Liberals sound alarm on native water quality"

If you read the latest headline by Gloria Galloway at the Globe and Mail, you might be confused into thinking that the Liberal Party of Canada went out and personally conducted a study into the water quality on native reserves. "Liberals sound alarm"? Really Gloria? It was the government who conducted the study that found 40% of reserves had risky water, and both the Ontario and Canadian governments have already enacted projects to improve the quality. What the f**k does this have to do with the Liberal Party? Sure they were in power from 1993 to 2006 and were clearly negligent on aboriginal water quality, but now they are out there doing the brave work of "sounding alarms"? How benevolent...

Instead of just writing a story on poor native water quality, Gloria decided to spin it into a story about the Liberals defending the poor oppressed aboriginals who obviously did not receive adequate filtration systems while the "natural governing party" was actually governing. Also Gloria, you do realize the NDP are now the official opposition and Linda Duncan made an almost identical statement to Carolyn Bennett today. Why isn't your headline "NDP sound alarm on native water quality"? They did, and they are the official opposition.

Should Canada Have A Census?

Today's poll question; do you think Canada should even have a census, be it long or short? Has your household submitted your census yet? It is the law you know. The old mandatory long census has been scrapped in favour of a voluntary survey, but the short census still remains, and as mandatory as it has always been. Personally I believe that the census provides our government with valuable information about its people, allowing for a more efficient flow of government services to the citizens of our country. Granted, in our modern era the same information can be obtained through means that do not include a mandatory census survey. The world has changed just a little bit since the first Canadian census in 1871. A number of European countries have ended their census practices, though it isn't necessarily advisable to follow Europe's lead on all policy fronts.

So what do you think? Do we need a census? By the way, does Stats Can release what it costs to actually carry out a complete national census?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Which Political/Media Person Has The Worst Hairdo?

Without much excitement or stories of interest in the Canadian political sphere this summer, one valued BT contributor would like to ask; "which news person, political person etc has the worst hairdo?" With the first nomination being Rebekah Brooks from News of the World. The CBC's Kady O'Malley and Rosemary Barton are also worthy candidates. This will eventually become a poll question after first opening the subject up to rigorous debate. Nominees do not need to be Canadian, as we will accept international nominations.

MaryT, this one's for you.

Linda Duncan
Rebekah Brooks

Julie Van Dusen

Elizabeth May
Susan Delacourt

Kady O'Malley and Rosemary Barton

Donald Trump

Michael Moore

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Man Killed By Cash Cab

Friday night in Vancouver a man was killed after being struck by the Discovery Channel's "Cash Cab" following filming of the TV show by the same name. It is a show where they drive around in a fake taxi cab picking people up then asking them trivia questions in exchange for cash prizes. I've seen part of an episode of this show, and it did not interest me. Have you ever watched the show Cash Cab? That is today's poll question (it is a slow news weekend). Thus far no charges have been laid and the investigation is ongoing.

We'll see if the Discovery Channel continues carrying the show.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Rating John Baird The Globetrotter

There is no question that John Baird has been one of the busiest MPs in Parliament this summer, trotting the globe engaging in international diplomacy with foreign nations. Today's poll question; how would you rate John Baird's early performance as Minister of Foreign Affairs? Excellent? Acceptable? Replaceable? He has become deeply involved with the Libya mission, which is starting to inspire some pretty harsh criticisms among the Canadian punditry. The other day it appeared that NDP strategist Ian Chapstick was going to start crying on the Soloman Show over so-called "mission creep". Not only do I support replacing Gaddafi, I'd like to know if we can stop by Zimbabwe on the way home. There are more than few targets in Syria that are in serious need of some explosive ordnance. Basher Assad is butchering his own people on a daily basis, can't we at least take out some of his palaces? Are they within reach of your current operating base in Italy?

I can only imagine how Liberals feel about Baird performing this function of government. My head might explode if Mark Holland ever became the face of Canadian diplomacy. I only make this comparison because Liberals react to Baird much the same way as Tories react to Holland.

Would India Be Justified Invading Pakistan?

Today's poll question; would India be justified invading Pakistan to take out terrorist groups? The latest bombings in Mumbai, the 4th in 8 years, might have been carried out by militants operating out of Pakistan (as has been widely speculated after past attacks). If the government of Pakistan is unwilling, or perhaps too weak to stop militant activity within its own borders (Bin Laden for example), does India have justification to do it themselves? Yes, Pakistan has nuclear weapons, which is probably the biggest reason India has not already conducted military operations across the border. The question is, how many times can one country be attacked before they fight back? The country of Gandhi might believe that an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind, but being repeatedly punched in the face can also do serious damage.

The nuclear bombs are a complicating factor, adding to that fears that the current Pakistani government is sitting on a house of cards. India doesn't want the inmates to takeover the asylum, so there is a strong probability that they are holding back their response so long as the current regime is in power. The current regime may be powerless to stop the militants, but it is preferable for them to be in power rather than the militants being in power. At the same time, the Pakistani government can't green light the Indian military entering Pakistan because that would not go over well with the Pakistani street.

Can somebody please tell me how to solve this problem? Or is the least destructive option be that India accept bi-annual terrorist attacks?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Final Chapter Of Guergis-gate

The Helena Guergis controversy can finally be put to rest now that the ethics commissioner has found she violated the Parliamentary code of ethics by trying to help her husband secure contracts for his fledgling "green waste" company. This justifies Prime Minister Stephen Harper removing her for caucus, regardless of what may or may not have been true in that Toronto Star "busty hookers" story. The Liberals lost credibility during Guergis-gate after first demanding she be fired when the busty hookers story broke; then slamming the PM for removing her from caucus after he gave her the boot. Helena went from being a villain to the Liberals, only to become their hero a few weeks later. In fact I would not be the least bit surprised if she ran for the Liberal Party in the next election. Though it might be tough for her to get Rahim government contracts if she is sitting in caucus with the third place party.

So long Helena. Enjoy your life outside of politics.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Ontario Liberals Call NDP Leader "The New Mike Harris"???

The Ontario Liberals are now calling NDP leader Andrea Horwarth "the new Mike Harris"? Are you kidding me? As a longtime supporter of Mike Harris, I am completely comfortable saying that NDP policy in no way shape or form resembles the policies of our beloved Common Sense revolution. To compare her to Mike is absolutely ridiculous. Desperate times sure call for desperate measures. This strategy (or stunt) is nothing more than a cheap attempt to frighten union workers (especially in the public sector) who are deciding between Liberals and the NDP. Many in the right of center still hold Harris in high regard, so these "symbolic accusations" have to be targeted at the left. Only the left has passionate disdain for the former Tory Premier. Clearly McGuinty is worried about left wing vote split and the surge of NDP support in the recent federal election. This is yet another example of McGuinty's Liberals treating Ontario voters like dolts and chumps. It is a ridiculous accusation that insults people's intelligence.

Dalton McGuinty has got to go!

Dalton's New "Chumps" And "Dolts" Attack Ads

Months ahead of the Ontario election, Liberal Premier Dalton McGuinty has released a new attack ad accusing Tim Hudak of treating Ontario voters like chumps and dolts (ironically how Dalton treats people who pay taxes). According to at least one writer at the Globe and Mail, this emulation of Harper Conservative strategy could put McGuinty back in office for a 3rd term. Of course the biggest difference between Harper and McGuinty's circumstances is that the Tories were enjoying a comfortable lead in the polls for months prior to the ads being released. Dalton however is trailing in the polls and is still reeling from voter anger at all the many new taxes that he has introduced under his reign. It might be a little hypocritical of the Sherrif of Nottingham to accuse others of what he himself is guilty of.

Besides, I seriously doubt that "dolts and chumps" will be more effective than the "just visiting" ads.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Ideas For Cutting CBC Budget

The CBC is going to have its funding cut by 5% in the next federal budget and I have some ideas on how they can save money (your suggestions are also welcome). The obvious solution of reducing the salaries and expense accounts of Milewski, O'Malley, et all obviously deserves some consideration. However that is just small potatoes and does not lead the way to the larger budget cuts we'd all like to see. My solution is for the CBC to cancel 85% of its "original" programming. After reviewing the top 30 Canadian TV ratings for each week of 2011, the only CBC shows to make the list consistently are Hockey Night in Canada and Dragon's Den. The Rick Mercer Report showed up a few times, and Heartland cracked the bottom of the list twice. American syndicated game shows Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy get better ratings on the CBC than almost everything else they air! (HNC & DD notwithstanding)

Republic of Doyle, scrap it. Insecurity, scrap it. Being Erica, scrap it. Little Mosque on the Prairie, scrap it. Men With Brooms (I like curling, but this is a brutally awful sitcom), scrap it. Any shows that I'm forgetting, scrap them. Let's stop production on all these terrible sitcoms that nobody watches and replace them with American game shows and vintage movies. There, we just saved the CBC millions of dollars...

Monday, July 11, 2011

North Korea To Chair UN Conference On Military Disarmament? What?

The United Nations never ceases to amaze me in the absolute ridiculousness of some of their decisions. North Korea has now been chosen to chair a UN Conference on military disarmament, and Canada will be proudly boycotting the work of this body as we should. North Korea is one of the worst perpetrators in the development and proliferation of nuclear weapons who frequently fires missiles, torpedoes, rockets, and bullets at their sovereign neighbours. This conference should not be taken seriously and any policies produced by it should be soundly rejected. N.Korea is the worst possible country that could have been chosen to chair this conference, short of maybe Myanmar. Previous ludicrous appointments include Muamar Gaddafi to the UN Council on human rights. You will be pleased to know that Gaddafi's membership on that council has been suspended since he began massacring his own people. We'll see, maybe NK's chair of  this conference will be suspended the next time they sink a South Korean navy ship.

The United Nations has become a joke. Getting denied a spot on the security council was actually a great compliment when you examine the selection criteria for other appointments.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

The End Of A Liberal Era?

At the Calgary Stampede this weekend Prime Minister Stephen Harper gave a speech declaring the end of a Liberal era in Canada. "As with disco balls and bell bottoms, Canadians have moved on." While I agree with our fearless leader than the "era" of the Liberals allegedly being Canada's "natural governing party" is at an end, I do believe the Liberal Party itself will survive. There are too many crazies in the NDP to hold that house of cards together, and unless the Liberals fold into the NDP, all they need to do is bunker down while the orange wave dissipates.

In the near future Liberal leaders won't be chosen on electability, but rather their ability to raise money (though the two are likely correlated to some degree). Will the few remaining and many former Liberal boosters open up their wallets for Bob Rae? Only time will tell, but that may be the greatest measure of his value (or lack thereof) to the Liberals that will determine whether he leads the Party into the next election. How much money he can raise will be more important than poll numbers. The Liberal era might be over, but I don't think the Party is dead just yet.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Purpose Of Liberal Summer Tours?

Today's poll question; what do you think is the purpose of these frequent Liberal cross country tours? They claim the purpose is to connect with the "grassroots" and collect feedback from "regular people", when in fact they meet mostly party boosters. Is the true purpose to beg boosters for more money? I haven't seen the balance sheets so I don't if they cost more than they bring in. Is this about quelling a rebellion? Is it all just a dog an pony show to give the illusion that they are making an effort so that the foot soldiers don't start complaining about lack of effort? Or do they just make no sense at all? The song says "I've been trying to make some sense of it all, but I can see it makes no sense at all."

Ignatieff did 1-3 of these tours every year of his leadership. He even did them while Parliament was sitting and he was missing votes, where Bob is sticking to the summer with Parliament in recess. It shows Bobby is more shrewd than his predecessor, but I guess that ain't saying much...

Friday, July 8, 2011

Canadian Politician Tries To Shut Down Blog

If a politician contacted Google to try and get a blog removed from the Internet for being too critical (and was rejected), would Google inform the blogger of this request? Because according to the CBC in 2009 an unknown Canadian politician tried to get a blog shut down and was rejected because the blog did not violate any of Google's user policies. The article doesn't say which blog or which politician, but I would really love to know. Does anyone know who the protagonists are in this story? I tried a Google search and did not find anything. As someone who wrote hundreds of blog posts in 2009 often very critical of politicians, I'd very much like to know more.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

June 2011 Polling

Here are your poll results for the month of June. It was a month with some political drama on Parliament Hill, but also a month where general interest in politics declined after a convincing Tory majority victory. A number of Blogging Tories are taking vacations from writing, as people's interest has turned to enjoying their summer. Below are some polls about Rob Ford and the Gay Pride Parade, the post office back to work legislation, and a few questions about new Liberal leader Bob Rae.


No (84%)
Yes (14%)
Undecided (2%)


No (97%)
Yes (3%)
Undecided (0%)


Yes (87%)
No (12%)
Undecided (1%)


No (97%)
Yes (2%)
Undecided (0%)


Yes (73%)
No (15%)
Undecided (11%)


No (50%)
Yes (43%)
Undecided (5%)


5 (50%)
4 (24%)
3 (10%)
2 (3%)
1 (6%)
never knew my dad (6%)


Elect Senators (70%)
Abolish it (21%)
Remain unchanged (5%)
Undecided (2%)


Yes (66%)
No (28%)
Undecided (5%)


Undecided (13%)
2015 (9%)
2016 (1%)
2017 (4%)
2018 (4%)
2019 (6%)
2020 (15%)
2025 (5%)
2030 (39%)


One member, one vote (54%)
All ridings weighted equally (26%)
Something in between (13%)
Undecided (5%)


No (61%)
Yes (39%)


No (91%)
Yes (8%)
Undecided (1%)


No (85%)
Yes (11%)
Undecided (3%)


Left (57%)
Unchanged (27%)
Right (14%)


Less (65%)
The Same (30%)
More (1%)
Undecided (1%)


Calgary (36%)
Vancouver (25%)
Ottawa (8%)
Undecided (7%)
Edmonton (6%)
Toronto (6%)
Montreal (4%)
Winnipeg (3%)


Yes (53%)
No (43%)
Undecided (3%)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Increasing Gas Taxes?

Today's poll question; should gas taxes be increased to fund public transit expansion? Because that is exactly what's about to happen in Vancouver, on top of our existing carbon tax. Today I heard my own Mayor declaring that we need a gas tax or even an additional carbon tax to fund new transit projects. Enough with the taxing of motorists! This is getting ridiculous, instead of trying to reduce spending or funding projects through existing revenue streams, we keep getting new taxes. I left Ontario in part to escape the tax happy regime of Dalton McGuinty, but I moved to British Columbia only to find the same kind of knuckleheads running this province! When they introduce a new tax to build some new project, does the tax get scrapped when they are finished?

If I still live in West Vancouver next municipal election, I will be campaigning against Pam Goldsmith-Jones. I voted for her last time, even met her last year, and I don't recall her campaigning on new gas taxes. Had I known that was on the agenda, I would have voted for someone else. Vote no to gas taxes.Vote no to Christy Clark and the BC Liberal Party. Today I received my HST ballot in the mail. I voted yes to "extinguish" the tax, even though the option I wanted was not on the ballot. I want the BC Liberals to take Stephen Harper's offer not to add the 7% PST to goods and services not previously taxed by the province. Having an HST is fine, it was the jacking up of prices for a large basket of goods and services that pissed people off.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Bobapalooza: Rae's Summer Tour

Bob Rae is wasting no time getting out for his own summer tour, and we all know how well touring the Canadian BBQ circuit worked out for his predecessors. Bob says he's doing this to help rebuild the Liberal Party and I'm sure it has nothing to do with raising his own national profile. He's only in this for the interim and has no intention of taking this party into the next election, right Bobby? Either that or he can take the opportunity to starting warming people to the idea of a Liberal-NDP merger.

The question is, how will Bob's summer tour be different from Iggy's multiple tours? Where Ignatieff was more the aristocrat, Rae is more the communist scholar. Do we call this the "Iron Curtain Tour" or maybe the "Long March", as he goes coast to coast laying down his plan to turn Canada into the Soviet Union. The Utopia Now Tour?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Canadian Gaza Boat: Three Cheers For Greece!

Hip hip Hooray! Congratulations to the government and coast guard of Greece for stopping the Canadian Gaza boat before it could get anywhere close to Israeli waters. Thank you for stopping these clowns from embarrassing my country, and it certainly makes me more receptive to a second bailout to rescue the collapsing Greek economy. My only regret was that they escorted the boat back to docks instead of sinking it. Okay, perhaps sinking it would be a little extreme, instead they could just tow the boat to Antarctica and leave them there. That would make a great poll question, what should be done with the Canadian Gaza boat?

This was just a single boat rather than a flotilla of several boats, but it is still nice to see the Greek government do the right thing. If only the Turkish government had the same good sense and intelligence of the Greeks, last year's flotilla raid and controversy could have been avoided.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

"B.C finds success with controversial carbon tax"

Like the majority of BC residents who drive an automobile, I loathe our carbon tax. On Canada Day it was jacked up for a 3rd time, and now there is an article in the Globe and Mail praising the success of the tax (is it just me or has the Globe swinging farther to the left since the election). Now we have think tanks saying that the tax should increased to 50 cents a litre on gasoline in order to reach our emission reduction targets? Pundits like Andrew Coyne have pontificated that carbon taxes are more palatable than we think because Gordon Campbell won re-election in 2009 after unveiling a carbon tax. No Andrew, he won because the province still has nightmares about the last reign of the NDP and there is no viable right wing alternative to the Liberals. Then again Coyne supports introducing expensive new road taxes so that fewer people can afford to drive, allowing him to get home from work a few minutes faster.

Why do you think the whole house came crashing down on the Liberals after the HST, which a number of economists supported (while miscalculating its "revenue neutrality")? There was plenty of residual anger about the carbon tax and the good people of this province had enough. If the BC Conservatives run a full slate of candidates and promise to scrap the carbon tax, they will surprise a lot of people in the next election. Rumour has it that Christy Clark might call an election in the next few months to try and catch the Conservatives unprepared. Obviously carbon taxes will reduce the use of gasoline as it becomes more expensive because more people will not be able to afford to drive as they used to, especially low income earners and fixed income seniors.

Prince William Canada's Next Head Of State?

Today's poll question; would you like Prince William to be Canada's next head of state? In December 2010 I asked if you thought Prince William would make a good head of state, and only 53% answered yes. I'm curious to know if your opinion has changed in the last 7 months, though this time I'm asking a slightly different question. I will be voting no to the poll question because I prefer to recognize my elected Prime Minister as head of state rather than a hereditary monarchy. That being said, I respect William on a personal level and would certainly choose him for head of state over his father Charles. I'm sure if I asked the question "who would you rather have as Canada's head of state: Prince William, Prince Charles, or Stephen Harper" that our PM would win by a large margin.


Yes (53%)
No (30%)
Undecided (16%)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

"Dykes Against Israeli Apartheid"

At what point did the gay pride parade become a rally against so-called "Israeli Apartheid"? This afternoon they were on the news carrying signs "Dykes Against Israeli Apartheid" and others declaring their solidarity with lesbians in Palestine. Correct me if I'm wrong, but Israel is considered one of the most progressive countries in the world on the issue of gay rights; while homosexuality is illegal under Palestinian law. Hamas has referred to gays as "a minority of perverts and the mentally and morally sick" and hardly seems like the kind of regime that gay activists should be supporting. In fact, many gays in the Palestinian territories end up fleeing to Tel Aviv, which Out Magazine named "the gay capital of the Middle East".

Forgive my confusion, but it seems as though there is a very glaring hypocritical contradiction in "Dykes against Israeli apartheid". If tomorrow Israel was annexed by Hamas and ceased to exist, this would be a great tragedy for all the gay and lesbian people living in Israel. They would go from being protected to persecuted. I think these protesters might want to consider focusing their attention and their lobbying efforts on trying to win new rights for gays in countries where it is illegal to be gay. Attacking Israel does nothing to help all those people in prison cells across the middle east who have had their freedom taken away for no other reason than sexual orientation. Dykes against Israeli apartheid is fighting the wrong fight.

"Israel, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Cyprus are the only countries in the Middle East where homosexuality between consenting adults in private is not illegal and homosexuals are not persecuted under law. In most other Middle Eastern countries homosexuality is illegal, often punishable by corporal punishment, prison, and even the death penalty."
And those people at the pride parade beating an effigy of Rob Ford with a stick, very civilized...

Friday, July 1, 2011

Happy Tax Day...errr...Canada Day

As a British Columbian I must confess that I'm starting to loathe Canada Day. Not because of any lack of patriotism, but rather the tax hungry BC Liberal Party has started an annual tradition of jacking up taxes on the day we celebrate our nation's history. Today the carbon tax gets increased AGAIN, last year we got the HST adding 7% tax to food, recreation, and the entire service industry. Why the hell is Canada Day the day that the BC Liberals have ordained to introduce all their tax grabs? When we next go to the polls, we have to boot Christy Clark and the Liberals out of office. I'm sick and tired of new taxes.