Archive | September, 2011
From today’s Leader-Post, in a column called “Harper Should Toast Trost”:
Far more damning – downright disturbing, actually – is his further suggestion that the Prime Minister’s Office only listens to Conservative MPs when they take an aggressive stance on abortion. “We will apply this lesson,” he ominously warned. It’s not a threat that’s going to leave Harper shaking in his boots. There have been all-too-many times in Trost’s less-than-illustrious political career where he has appeared to be one tiny car and a big, red, rubber nose away from a new line of work.
Ha ha ha ha ha!
Also, Tweedle Dumber has finally chimed in, sticking up for his anti-abortion pal. From CBC:
Another Saskatchewan MP is calling for the government to cut funding to the International Planned Parenthood Federation, accusing them of being deceitful and conning the Conservative government. Maurice Vellacott, a Conservative MP from Saskatoon-Wanuskewin, alleges in a strongly worded press release that the international women’s health organization will be using Canadian aid money to perform abortions. The Canadian funding is for projects in countries where abortion is tightly restricted. The projects approved are sex education and contraception programs. The press release says Vellacott is commenting on “IPPF’s deceitful language on abortion to con the Canadian government for taxpayer dollars.” “The IPPF is trying to dupe us into believing that because Canadian taxpayer dollars are going to countries where abortion is supposedly illegal, the money won’t be spent on abortions,” he says in the statement.
I think Canadian politics needs fewer bible-thumpers and more brain-thinkers.
I’m paraphrasing. From The Globe And Mail:
The Health Minister told the House of Commons on Friday that her government would be taking a look at the decision. “Although we are disappointed with the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision today, we will comply,” Leona Aglukkaq said during Question Period. The government, she said, believes that the system should be focussed on preventing people from becoming drug addicts and has made significant investments to strengthen existing treatment efforts through its treatment action plan. “We will be reviewing the court decision,” the minister said.
Mmm-hmm. Also from that story:
Libby Davies, the New Democrat MP whose riding includes the Downtown Eastside where Insite is located, was delighted with the court ruling. “Since it opened in 2003 in my riding, fatal overdoses have dropped by a third. More people get treatment as Insite is there to connect people with the services they need. Today the people who use this service have had their voices heard,” Ms. Davies told the House.
That’s a little more reasonable. Read the full thing here.
British Columbia, the City of Vancouver, and SCIENCE all agree that Insite saves lives, and they want to keep it running. The Conservative feds, who’ve tried to kill Insite for years, need leave their cottages in make-believe land and learn about reality — then back off.
But whatever, they won’t. They’re the party of la la la, everything’s okay if you do it our way. Besides, the Cons — a.k.a. the Crazy Grampa Party — can still swing their Nancy Reagan-approved war-on-drugs dicks at pot smokers through their stupid crime omnibus bill.
Meanwhile, drug prohibition policies have a body count in, to make up a plausible number, the tens of millions. In Canada and worldwide, drug prohibition is a bigger failure than booze prohibition — it breeds gangsters and killers like mice in abandoned barns.
Miles Davis teaching John Lennon how to play basketball. Apparently filmed during Lennon’s birthday party in New York City in 1972.
More on the awesomeness of Miles Davis here. (The Guardian) I wonder what would happen is somebody spoke the truth to Mrs. Harper the way Miles allegedly spoke to Nancy Reagan …
Wow, Microsoft Security Essentials sure did a hell of a number on Google Chrome in our office this morning. But you don’t care about that. You want the news!
1 REASON WINS OVER IDEOLOGY FOR ONCE Canada’s Supreme Court has ruled that the Canadian Government can’t shut down safe injection sites like Insite. Insite has been proven to save lives and help addicts find treatment, and it has also cut down on stray used needles turning up in alleyways. This might actually good news for the Tories, who have been exceptionally stupid on drug policy: they lost a fight that was making them look like idiots who don’t listen to facts, and now they can move on (doubtless to other fights where they look like idiots who don’t listen to facts, but still). The story can also be found in other news outlets: try here, here, here and here for starters.
2 SASK TEACHERS HAVE RATIFIED THEIR CONTRACT Read all about it.
3 SASKATCHEWAN NEEDS WOMEN There are only 23 female candidates running in 58 ridings. If you assume four candidates per riding, that’s 23 women and 209 men running for office. Ouch.
4 PARDON PRICE PROBLEM A Conservative senator wants the Harper government to rethink the new pardon fees. I don’t know; rigging the system so that only people with enough money to flush a month’s rent down the toilet can have their criminal records filed away sounded fair to me. The more money people have, the better they are. Everyone knows that.
5 STINKY ONIONS Everyone’s favourite fake news source (sorry Jon and Stephen, we love you too) confused everyone with a contextless tweet about hostages in Congress. Guess some things are a little #tooclose tothetruth to laugh at.
6 TOP U.S. SCIENCE FACILITY SHUTS DOWN Tea Partiers will no doubt be happy to hear this news because it’s more evidence that their country’s best hope for the future truly is prayer.
FRIDAY VIDEO It’s long and dumb and I laughed my ass off. If you like unusually stupid humour you might like this unaired pilot from the late ’90s, which Ben Stiller says will “knock you back on your coal-mining asses.”
It’s September 30 and if you’re interested in seizing the reins of municipal power applying for a spot on a local committee, board or commission, then act fast because the snivelling bureaucrats are about to close your window of opportunity today is the last day to do that.
There is power to be had, mortal, that is if you aren’t a mere pansy in a field There are lots of interesting positions available and if you want details then gaze upon the awesomeness of have a gander at this post.
And make sure to go to the city’s labyrinthine very useful website Beware the Minotaur! for more information as well.
If you do decide you want to grasp the flaming sword of municipal governance participate in local government and remake this pissy little hamlet into a juggernaut of awesomeness make a difference in your city, make sure to alert those sniveling bureaucrats send your application to the Office of the City Clerk, PO Box 1790, Regina, S4P 3C8 before the end of today.
Actually, get moving mortal time’s a wasting. You’ll probably want to fax it in to 777-6809.
At the one-third mark of the CFL season I invited long-time Rider season ticket holders Ron Mexico and Earl Camembert to offer a few thoughts on how things had gone for the team so far.
We’re at the two-thirds mark now, and Ron and Earl are back to answer another round of questions. This time, they’re joined by Cal Corduroy. On Nov. 10 we’ll get together one last time to dissect the Rider season and look ahead to the playoffs.
When we last talked on Aug. 11 the Riders were 1-5. Following losses to Calgary and Toronto they fired head coach Greg Marshall and offensive coordinator Doug Berry. Seemingly revitalized by Ken Miller’s return, they dominated the Bombers in the Labour Day home-and-home, then gutted out a win over the Argos at Mosaic on Sept. 17. Had I canvassed you then, you likely would’ve given thumbs up to all the changes — including Andy Fantuz’s return from an NFL tryout with the Bears. But last Saturday the Riders were mauled by the Lions 42-5. How much of a shock was that game for you?
RM: Moderate. This is still a team that started 1-7 and was atrocious in a number of those losses, so getting beat badly was certainly a possibility. I actually don’t think this performance was as consistently bad as the Hamilton and Toronto losses. The high snap, the 100-yard Arland Bruce TD pass, and the pick six interception return happened very quickly, and resulted in 21 points against.
EC: The B.C. game wasn’t that much of a shock. When you look at the Rider roster, you come to the conclusion that they really aren’t that good at receiver, running back and defensive end.
CC: Not a shock that we lost, but a shock we lost by that much. To have a team step into our barn and kick our butts like that is a bit embarrassing. B.C. has a good team (a very good defense, and a pretty good offense — Travis Lulay notwithstanding), and from the first drive the Riders weren’t in it. The Riders simply don’t have the horses.
The other concert series that the Regina Symphony Orchestra present like Masterworks and Government House typically draw well too, but the Pops Series is especially … well, popular. Last January, my sister was in town from Quebec City, and we saw Jason Plumb & the Willing play with the RSO. Tomorrow night, piano pop whiz Jeffrey Straker (pictured) will be performing with the orchestra (Conexus Arts Centre, 8 p.m.)
To give you a sense of what to expect (absent the 60 or so instruments the RSO will bring to the table) here’s the video for Straker’s 2010 song “Somewhere Between”.
I popped by the Celebration of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms Day festivities at Victoria Park over the lunch hour and met this protester who I took a picture of for the blog. What she says, except that I don’t have a uterus for Brad Trost to keep his hands off of. That’s fine, he can keep his hands of what parts I do have. (You’ve been following this story, right?)
I hung around for two short talks, Emily Eaton’s on censoring the left (excellent!) and Susana Deranger’s on environmentalism (really good, although terms like Mother Earth make me uncomfortable. I like my environmentalism without mysticism). A good event with maybe 40 people or so. Beautiful day for it, too. Organizers should do it again next year.
September 29th will officially be, by Mayoral Proclamation, “Celebration of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms Day” in Regina and to celebrate we are organising a variety of events in Vic Park.
Come join the festivities to celebrate our Charter:
- Have the Charter’s meaning and ramifications explained by several knowledgeable experts, talks include:
12:00 Gathering in, welcome (Dr. Marc Spooner)
12:10 “Your Freedoms – Use them or Lose Them!” (Cara Banks and Larry Kowalchuk)
12:20 “The Limits of Liberal Rights” (Dr. Emily Eaton)
12:40 “Declaration on the Rights of Mother Earth” (Susana Deranger)
1:00 “Rights and Responsibilities: The Canadian Charter, Power, Activism and Citizenship”. (Dr. Joyce Green)
1:20 “Queering the Church” (Dawn Rolke)
2pm Music, sign making, general Celebration of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms
- Get your free fancy copy of the Charter available in 25 different languages
- Make your own, free election-style sign at the “Seeds of Change” signage making table where you can bring the issues you hold dear back home to your respective micro communities.
- Open microphone 2 mins Soapbox/Speaker’s Corner “get your two cents in!”
Free Speech zone, And more…
We hope you will come to assert YOUR rights to freedom and to keeping our
parks public, free, and open spaces.
Thank you to the generous support of RPIRG and URSU! (Thanks from Marc Spooner)
SERIOUSLY, WTF? If anybody thought the Regina Pats would have started this season with three consecutive victories, it was because you were at my house on ‘Mix The Medication Night. (Regina Leader-Post)
MAYBE IT WAS GREG MARSHALL’S PLAYBOOK, I DUNNO … In an effort to boost sales of its flagging Playbook, RIM drops prices by $100 a copy. (Toronto Star) But, unfortunately for the company, most people become pretty suspicious of a ‘firm’ and ‘total’ denial. (CBC News)
ONTARIO TORY LEADER CAMPAIGNS ON BEHALF OF WIFE OF ALLEGED SEX ASSAULTER Don’t think ‘get tough on crime’ will be part of Tim Hudak’s stump speech today (Toronto Star).
UFC GOES TO PARLIAMENT HILL Stephen Harper: A joint? OHMYFUCKINGGODTHEWORLD’SGONNAEND … Beat people up in a cage? Cool. (Sportsnet)
SOFT ON CRIME, PART DUH … The British Columbia Government says it’s being short-changed and railroaded in its negations with Ottawa over a new contract with the RCMP. (Globe and Mail) Here’s a thought: considering the jurisdictional bungling that plagued the Robert Picton investigation and the tasering incident at Vancouver International Airport a few years ago, why not consider a provincial police force? It’s not as if anybody in B.C. hadn’t ever thought of it … (Wikipedia)
YOUR MUSICAL MOMENT OF ZEN: by Their Satanic Majesties’ request …
Ironically, while Brad Trost and his fellow troglors work to strip women of their right to make their own decisions about the contents of their uteruses, there’s a rights and freedoms thingy in Victoria Park. At noon, festivities will commence for Regina’s mayorally-proclaimed Celebration Of Our Charter Of Rights And Freedoms Day. Speakers start at noon and the topics look like they range from interesting to super-interesting.
Here’s a link to the event’s Facebook page, and a press release with a list of the speakers is after the jump. I’m going to poke my nose in for a bit. Maybe see you there!
Behold the shocking whatever.
*Woke up this morning to Sheila Coles interviewing Brad Trost so I’m a leetle bit punchy. Pretty good interview by Coles.
Fifth installment in our PMO Photo Op Caption Contest. This image from the PMO requires a bit of context. It was taken in early September, and shows Prime Minister Harper and B.C. premier Christy Clark at the 100th anniversary celebration of a Sikh temple in Abbortsford.
If you were writing a satiric caption for a hip publication that regularly mocked those in positions of power what would it be?
Here’s a link to James Brotheridge’s preview of this Sandbox Series production that runs at the Globe Theatre until Oct. 8. I believe he’s also going to review of it. So keep an eye out.
We’ll be reviewing all the Globe’s main stage and Sandbox shows this year, in fact. So, again, keep an eye out.
I’m starting things off with a bit of a ramble. Please read anyway. If nothing else, it’s something to do while you torrent fancy Scandinavian pornography.
Got a fax yesterday about a press conference today at 9:30 a.m. at SARM headquarters (2075 Hamilton) where an announcement was to be made about an important development for downtown Regina.
Huh?, some of you are perhaps thinking.
SARM stands for Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities. So what announcement could they possibly make that would be a big deal for downtown Regina. Well, it turns out the organization has purchased a chunk of land from SaskPower at Rose & 13th Ave. that is currently used for parking, and will be constructing a new head office there. Here’s a link to the Leader-Post report, which says the building will ready for occupancy by late 2013.
Heard this earlier, was in a meeting, blogging now. So anti-abortion moral champion Brad Trost is going on about saving fetuses again. From The Globe And Mail:
According to Mr. Trost, Conservative MPs have been asking since 2006 to have IPPF [International Planned Parenthood Federation] defunded but they were ignored “because we asked politely — and behind closed doors.”
In 2009, when they became more aggressive and took their campaign public, “federal funding did stop for a time. Funds allocated to IPPF were considerably reduced. Furthermore, federal grants for IPPF also had more strings attached.”
But that only happened because pressure was applied, Mr. Trost writes. “The battle over the IPPF continues. Pro-life politicians have been taught a lesson.”
I wonder if the Conservatives tolerate Trost because they know he speaks to the radical Christians in their political base. Stephen Harper’s not going to reopen the abortion debate — no way, he lucked out into his majority and he’s not going to risk it on an unwinnable social conservative crusade when he can get into enough trouble on his own. But allowing Trost, an irrelevant backbencher, to beak off in public without substantial consequences is a safe way to let disgruntled fundamentalists feel they’re something more than a credulous vote factory.
It’s a variation of dog-whistle politics — sending coded messages to your core constituency in a way that they’ll understand, but your softer, easily-scared-off supporters might not. The Republicans do it all the time in the U.S.
Then again, Trost’s idiocy could spook swing voters in Ontario and Manitoba elections (probably not in Sask, where the Sask party is essentially invulnerable) away from the Tories. That happens, and Trost might just get stepped on. We can only hope.
In the meantime, readers of this blog are advised to avoid the Saskatoon-Dumboldt area. You wouldn’t want the 19,930 morons who voted for Trost to drool on your nice clothes.
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