Saturday, June 26, 2010


Questions for the Cons:

Do you understand now why holding the G20 summit in downtown Toronto was a huge fucking mistake?

Did you really think these summits would boost Ontario tourism? Really?

Care to comment on how at least 3 cop cars were torched after apparently being left unattended?

How about the report about a journalist who was punched in the face? Got anything to say about that?

And this one? Emomotimi Azorbo charged with assaulting a police officer, resisting arrest, but friends say he couldn’t hear and follow police instructions. He is deaf.

Can you tell us why the TO police chief says he's "shocked" by the violence? "Shocked"?

Seriously, if you Cons thought Canadians were outraged at the $1 billion security tab you racked up for this farce, just wait until the fallout from this really hits the fan.

And Saturday nite has only just begun...

And while you try to blame what's going on on a bunch of anarchists, more than a bit of self-reflection about this absolutely bone-headed, politically-motivated decision you made about the location of this clusterfuck will definitely be in order.

I'll tell you what: next time you guys want to get together, do the rest of us a favour and try Cuba. I hear Gitmo has damn good and cheap security. And that pesky "free speech" thing won't even be an issue.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Generally Speaking - About Afghanistan

There's obviously no need to rehash what was written about General Stanley McChrystal and his aids in the now infamous Rolling Stone article that shook DC more than the very real earthquake that rattled Ontario and Quebec today.

McChrystal is out. A political no-brainer for Obama.

The other shoe that dropped, however, is that Petraeus is in.

And what did candidate Obama have to say about the man he just nominated to head the ISAF surge?

Obama Gives Petraeus Remarks Low Marks

By ELI LAKE, Staff Reporter of the Sun | September 11, 2007

WASHINGTON — Senator Obama, the Democrat from Illinois seeking his party’s nomination for the presidency, is giving the Iraq progress report of General David Petraeus low marks, going so far as to claim the one clear success in Iraq in recent months — the rout of Al Qaeda in Anbar — has nothing to do with the military surge the general in Washington is defending.

“I’m not sure that the success in Anbar has anything to do with the surge,” Mr. Obama said today at the first of two hearings featuring General Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker. “You yourself said it was political.”
And yet president Obama bowed to McChrystal when he publicly shamed him to send tens of thousands more troops to Afghanistan for yet another military surge that's bound to end in failure - something even McChrystal now acknowledges.

Obama today:

He urged the Senate to confirm Petraeus swiftly and emphasized the Afghanistan strategy he announced in December was not shifting with McChrystal's departure.

"This is a change in personnel, but it is not a change in policy," Obama said.
That policy is killing record numbers of soldiers.

That policy may well slow down the withdrawal of US troops while painting a rosy picture that counts on collective amnesia about just how "successful" Petraeus' surge strategy was in Iraq.

Same war. Different commander. Same policy. Different outcome?

Not likely.

It wasn't McChrystal's policy implementation that Obama had a problem with. It was his insubordination.

Candidate Obama would have told president Obama not to have nominated McChrystal in the first place considering his track record. But candidate Obama and president Obama are two very different people - as we all know by now.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Control Freak Steve

It's no surprise that Father Knows Best Harper has been using a tightly controlled message strategery to muzzle his ministers and anyone who represents his government or that they've tried for years to cloak the Canadian involvement in the Afghanistan war as some sort of peacekeeping mission. (See also: 2007: Canadians Will Not be Fooled by War Propaganda).

What is surprising is that they actually allowed this access to information request that uncovered the MEPs to go through considering their blatant contempt for free-flowing information. ("Attack dog" Marleau retired not long after that. We'll see how the new czar does under this repressive regime.)

Anyone who watched question period the past couple of weeks saw the MEP talking points about the Cons' G8/G20 billion dollar security cost boondoggle following Steve's Bouncing Ball of Bullshit as the excuses rolled out day after day:

"We don't want to spend this money. We have to."


And today's rendition after being confronted with the "fake lake" controversy:

"We're proud of Canada."


The message has been clear: if you oppose spending a billion bucks on security for a 72 hour gabfest, you:

1. Hate Canada.

2. Hate security and the security forces.

Just more of the typical fear-mongering that Conservatives are infamous for.

Poor Steve.

And he wonders why his party can't muster enough support to actually form a majority?

Look in the mirror, honey.

Transparency: a word in Steve's dictionary that comes between tragedy and treason.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Quote du Jour: Today's Parliamentary Food Fight

After QP today, BQ member Michel Guimond, while being heckled during a point of order about repeated accusations by the Cons who have said the party does not support children and that it sides with criminals, responded with this little swipe about Shelly Glover, MP for St Boniface (a former police officer who is a staunch supporter of scrapping the long gun registry and the Cons so-called "tough on crime" agenda):

Mr Speaker, please tell Calamity Jane to go play with her revolvers outside the house.
Outrage ensued, of course.

Shelly Glover: such a beacon of fairness and democracy - as evidenced by this member statement made on May 14, 2010:

Mrs. Shelly Glover (Saint Boniface, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, the Russian online newspaper Pravda had an interesting story yesterday about the leader of the Liberal Party entitled, “Russian Duke Craves Power in Canada”. Many Canadians probably do not know that the Liberal leader admitted on a Canadian television program to being flattered when addressed using the aristocratic and hereditary term “count”.

They also probably do not know that the Liberal leader admitted that his aristocratic and hereditary title was useful for social advancement in the United Kingdom. We do know that the Liberal leader is a self-identified cosmopolitan who admits to being “horribly arrogant”. It is no wonder the Liberal leader wants to raise taxes that will hurt Canadian families by killing jobs. Clearly, in his mind—

The Speaker:
We will move on to the next statement. I think that is out of order.
Yes, she quoted Pravda.

Case closed, I'd say.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

All Hail the Oligarchy

Yes, of course it's obscene that the minority Conservative government is going to spend an estimated $1 billion for security for the upcoming G8 and G20 summits as a result of political grandstanding (remember 9/11?!) and in the shallowest attempt to highlight one of the Cons' ridings (which those attending the summit won't see anyway because, apparently, it's too scary out there!). But let's get real here: the opposition won't vote against this spending (inflated from the original estimate of $137 billion in the budget documents - did I say "inflated"? Try "blown right out of the water like BP's Gulf Gusher"). To vote against the budget would be a vote of non-confidence which would trigger an election which none of the parties currently want because all over their numbers guarantee yet another (probably Conservative) minority government. (Don't let all of this resurrected "coalition" talk fool you. Ignatieff thinks being the next PM is, laughingly, his destiny.) And, of course, none of these political puppets (except the Bloc Quebecois) wants to "embarrass" Canada on the "world stage" (compliant actors that they are) by causing a domestic ruckus before the meetings even take place.

And what of these meetings with these leaders and their entourages of thousands? The very fact that they think that spending $1 billion of taxpayers' money on their security - not to mention the numerous other expenses that go along with these quickie tete a tetes that could just as easily be handled via Skype - while a global recession is going on and while claiming that it's their humanitarian mission to help the poor with yet more promises of aid that either never materializes or is so wrought with restrictions based on ideology (no abortion funding for you dying women in Africa!) is just another slap in the face to we powerless peasants living in these so-called democracies whose only voting choices include picking a) Party A that panders to Big Business b) Party B that panders to Big Business or, at least in Canada since we have the New Democrats c) Party C that goes along with parties A & B while they pander to Big Business (although they do have showboating tantrums along the way to try to convince the rest of us that they're really different when they're not).

Look, we have a massive clusterfuck of an oil spill in the Gulf courtesy of British Petroleum. Former BP chairman Peter Sutherland who left the company this past January is now the managing director of Goldman Sachs International. That's right - the same Goldman Sachs involved in bringing down Greece's economy. The same Goldman Sachs whose officers were welcomed with open arms into the Bush and Obama administrations. The same Goldman Sachs that's currently trying to cut a deal with the US government to avoid fraud charges for contributing to that same global recession I mentioned above. The Obama administration sent their AG Holder down to the Gulf to make it look like he's actually going to pursue criminal charges against BP. Any idea how long that would actually take in court? Expect yet another deal where BP ends up paying some small fine (in proportion to its ridiculous amount of profits). Oh - ironically - the cost of the cleanup efforts etc to this point in the Gulf equal - wait for it - the same amount projected to be spent on security for those "G we're trying to look like we're doing something" summits (almost $1 billion). Chump change for a corporation like BP. Hardship for the taxpayers of Canada who will pay for these clowns to get together and talk about how they can keep pandering to monster corporations like BP and Goldman Sachs (offering them every possible legal protection they can) while the rest of us pay for their corporate crimes for decades.

This isn't just about BP, obviously. But BP is symptomatic of a much larger problem: we can't get any decent action to deal with climate change and the horrific damage these corporations are causing because the oilgarchy listens to money. They're Money Whisperers. Let's stop pretending that these guys get together to discuss anything resembling The Common Good unless by "Common" you mean those sitting in corporate boardrooms figuring out even more ways to buy more government officials while getting every possible regulation watered down to the point where it does about as much "good" as trying to get we peons to believe that if we all just switch over to compact fluorescent light bulbs, monstrosities like BP wouldn't have to drill 5,000 feet under water just to satisfy our greedy need for more oil. (Let's forget about the fact that corporate America was busy killing innovations like electric cars and that now that they are available, we can't afford them because they're "too new". See how that works? It's all your fault.)

And the latest crime by Israel? Does anybody realistically believe that will even be on the agenda? Of course not. Perpetual war and occupation is good for business. (See: Wars, Afghanistan, Iraq). What does this Con government plan to so with its' so-called "Maternal Health Initiative" in Gaza? Ooops, sorry. That's off the table. They wouldn't want to insult the Israeli government, after all. Look over there! Iran!! Nope. Israel won't even get a "sternly worded letter". The Cons (and the Obama administration) know where their bread is buttered when it comes to campaign donations. Money Whisperers...

So, what's the point of all of this, really? I'd suggest that these so-called leaders could just meet on a cruise ship in international waters somewhere but then they'd run the risk of the Israeli government mistaking it as a humanitarian mission to Gaza and we all know how that would turn out. So they'll descend on Canada for some 72 hours for photo ops while crowing about the "good" they're doing for various and sundry serfs and we'll be left holding the bag for the most expensive meeting of its kind ever. But don't complain. Just get out there and buy a few light bulbs and the order of the world will remain as it should be.

Never before have so many been bought off so much by so few. All hail the oligarchy.