Thursday, December 15, 2005

Dizzy... what I am right now. A brisk walk didn't help. Ingesting two double cheeseburgers from DQ didn't help. Man, I hope it's just a cold coming on... or stress... this Constructive Dismissal thing has created a bit of tension around here. OUT! That's what I need. The sooner, the better. Sleep would be good, too.

I can't get interested in the Canuck election this time around - at least not yet. It's hard to get very excited when the outcome is 58% likely to be another Lie-beral minority, 40% likely to be a Tory minority, and 2% likely to be... something else. Besides, one can just tune in after Xmas, which makes it a relatively painless 3 week campaign. Frankly, I couldn't care less that the campaign is happening over Xmas, and I think the Lie-berals have cottoned on to the fact that most people don't care, which is why I haven't heard much lately about the evil Tories forcing - Gasp! A Christmas Election Campaign! Oh, the Horror!

Update: Apparently Child #2 has been dizzy all day too, and wished to go home mid-day. Whew. Hopefully that means I'm not going to die tonight...

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

The Innu have a Duty to Mitigate

Instead of hunting polar bears and cariboo, for instance, they'll have to learn to kill lions and gazelles. The WWF might not heartily endorse that idea, however.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Monday, November 07, 2005

Mr. Hewitt was going to talk free trade, so...


Mr. Bush (a great man whom I take a LOT of flak for supporting in this neck of the woods) is going to have a very difficult time selling the concept of free trade to anyone in the Americas so long as the United States continues to refuse to play by the rules of the the FTA & NAFTA. The Softwood Lumber Dispute has gone as far as it can go in the dispute resolution process, the Canadians have won at every level, and the United States' Federal Government still refuses to abide by the rulings. Five & a half BILLION dollars which belong to Canadian lumber producers - some of whom are American companies - is sitting in limbo, when it ought to be repaid immediately. This administration is handing a big stick to Hugo Chavez with which to beat the possibility of any new trade agreements with. It also makes it very difficult for Americaphiles like myself to get an ear here in Trudeaupia. Why would any cold-eyed, intelligent, trade-friendly, business-like president or prime minister sign a trade agreement with a party - the United States - who can't be trusted to follow through on the agreement?

As I tell my friends here, who shake their heads when they see the Stars 'n' Stripes hanging in my office (and which I have had hanging somewhere close to me almost non-stop since 9-11), Mr. Bush is a free-trader. Unfortunately, Senators & Congressmen - of all stripes - are protectionist to the core when it comes to the goring of their constituents' oxen - even when those oxen are sick and dying of the protectionist disease, and the North American lumber industry is a case study in how tariffs hurt everyone, especially those they are meant to protect. (And Mr. Bush is unwilling to tell the Commerce Department to enforce trade tribunals' rulings or lobby Congress hard to lay off the protectionism, because there are Senate seats up for grabs in lumber producing States - understandable, but unproductive in the long run). Under tariffs, the Canadian lumber producers have become lean and hyper-efficient, while the U.S. producers have become fat, unproductive, and lazy - to themselves and U.S. consumers alike - just ask Home Depot.

If free trade is to work, the players have to follow the rules. Play hard, play tough, play to win - but when the ref rules it a touchdown, line up for the kickoff - don't sit down in the middle of the field and refuse to let the game continue.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Another missive...

Wow! The CBC actually had a listenable conversation on about sports! So I wrote 'em: "Now THAT was interesting to listen to - the debate about "intuition v. statistics" in baseball management. So often the discussions on The Current are boring, biased, and ignoramuses-sharing-their-ignorance. The lesson? Do more sports! (Real sports, please, not boring Olympics crud). My complements to Kevin Sylvester, as well. It is great to have a guy do sports interviewing and discussion on CBC who appears to be genuinely interested in sports!"

Friday, October 14, 2005

Must... write... daily...!

It has been waaaaay too long... let's see... what to write about? The kids just finished watching their Lilo & Stitch movie... Tarzana Joe's poem of the week is on the Hewitt show... I've been sitting in front of the fire, just chatting in a friendly & cozy manner with "The (very) Fetching Mrs. B"... but the invasion of the munchkins has broken that spell, and it's time for a different kind of interaction, mainly a family conference on the future of the bunny, whom Natalie appears to be slightly allergic to... unfortunately this leads to some conflict between the sibs, and now I'm almost alone in the living room, with Amy curled up in the green wing chair, waiting to be carried off to bed and tucked in... funny, she'd been sent to her room for cutting her brother with a sharp comment... a busy weekend? The ducting for the overhead microwave/range hood needs to be installed, fortunately the Dad-in-law drew up plans before he departed for home, Toronto... I need to do some work... I'm doing Promiseland on Sunday, and we need to spend some time together.

Sunday, July 31, 2005

People are waking up all over

The Dutch began to wake up after Theo Van Gogh's murder by Mohammed Bouyeri. The British never really went to sleep, completely, I don't think, but they're certainly awake now. This article from the Telegraph contains this excellent quote: "Living fish swim against the stream. Only the dead go with the flow." Whoa. I think I've found a blogmotto. Now to translate back to latin...

Friday, July 22, 2005


Why is it that all the other major english speaking nations of the world have Leaders? Huh? (scroll down on The Anchoress)

Monday, July 18, 2005

Joe Wilson follow-up

Powerline (here, here, here, and elsewhere), Barone, Steyn, Captain Ed (many places), & Tom Maguire sum it all up pretty well. It is funny to see how this "scandal" is crumbling like sand-cakes in the Dem's hands. The whole "the White House outed Valerie Plame for revenge" line never made much sense to me. That kind of behaviour would be so out of character for this White House - and this President - that it just didn't ring true. The pettiness of such an action didn't make any sense in the context of an administration that is focused on a very serious war. I can't imagine a smart political operator like Karl Rove taking such a stupid risk, either. Now that the true facts are emerging, the whole scenario makes a whole lot more sense. Ms. Plame has been working at Langley at a hardly-undercover desk job since 1997! Matt Cooper called Karl Rove, not the other way around, and according to Mr. Cooper, Mr. Rove's intention was clearly to ensure that Mr. Cooper didn't put too much stock in anything Joe Wilson had been saying recently, not to "out" an "undercover" "CIA operative". Yikes. Could the lefties have gotten this one any more wrong?

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Plame was "undercover"? Letter to "The Hill"


Your article as noted above says:

"Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame, had been an undercover CIA agent working on issues involving weapons of mass destruction until columnist Bob Novak printed her name in a column in July 2003."

"A federal law makes it a crime to disclose the name of a CIA undercover agent." [My emphasis].

How "undercover" could she have been if it was common knowledge in DC that she worked for the CIA? As Captain Ed Morrissey [actually it was Dafydd on Captain'sQuarters - sorry!] has noted, as follows:

"So we are thrown back to the question I discussed in Dafydd: If It's Rove... Part Deux: is there any evidence at all that Karl Rove was aware that Plame's employment was classified information? The answer to that question is no, there is not. If there were, I trust that it would have been a banner headline, above the fold, on every newspaper in the country. Rather, as Andrea Mitchell and others have admitted (and as I mentioned before), Plame's employment was commonly known around the D.C. cocktail circuit, and that is almost certainly where Rove found out about it -- not from classified sources that he would have had no access to in the first place.
There is thus every reason to suppose not only that Rove did not believe that information to be classified, but further that he was under the impression that reporters already knew it... as indeed they may well have. After all, the focus of Rove's comment was not that she was in the CIA but rather that she, not Cheney or Tenet, was the one who suggested her husband, Joe Wilson, for the trip."

Secondly, the article alleges that "Bush had said that he would fire any administration official involved in leaking the name of an undercover agent." Captain Ed [umm... Dafydd again] takes that one apart as follows:

"I probably should not assume that everyone is on the same page of the dictionary. But one of the commenters to a previous post of mine, Dafydd: Bride of "If It's Rove"..., raised a definitional point that deserves response.

Attempting to prove that Bush indeed made some sort of "firing pledge," he notes a press conference on June 10, 2004 in Savannah, GA, in which the following exchange occurred:

Q: Given -- given recent developments in the CIA leak case, particularly Vice President Cheney's discussions with the investigators, do you still stand by what you said several months ago, a suggestion that it might be difficult to identify anybody who leaked the agent's name?
THE PRESIDENT: That's up to --
Q: And, and, do you stand by your pledge to fire anyone found to have done so?
THE PRESIDENT: Yes. And that's up to the U.S. Attorney to find the facts.

The first point that leaps out at me is that the last sentence indicates that Bush's "yes" was in fact answering the first question -- whether it would be difficult to find the source -- not the second about some "pledge" that in fact cannot seem to be located. The referrant of the word "that" in Bush's response cannot possibly be the pledge, unless Bush is suggesting that Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald should be trying to discover whether any such "firing promise" was made.

The second point is one that also went unnoticed by the commenter: the rather wide divergence between the "pledge" that Bush is said to have made, to "fire anyone found to have" "leaked the agent's name," and what Sen. Reid claimed yesterday that Bush had pledged: "The White House promised that if anyone was involved in the Valerie Plame affair, they would no longer be in this administration, his administration."

Even if such a pledge were made, Reid's statement was still a wild-eyed exaggeration of it."

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Get Effective!

...listening to Mark Steyn on Hugh Hewitt; subject: the deaths of a number of Navy SEALS in Afghanistan. Mr. Steyn makes the point that we haven't heard a great deal about Afghanistan lately because these specialized troops and others like them have been so effective, and that troops like these are the future of warfare.

It has been clear for years (and I've been telling anyone who will listen to me - umm... not a lot of people, really, but the dogs, the computer screen, the radio) that, if the Canadian government was not going to spend the money to support a full-fledged fighting force, it should fund a specialized commando force, a quick-strike, smart, steely-eyed group of soldiers - a group of significant size - that can be dropped into any place in the world on a moment's notice. I believe the Canadian Armed Forces have made some movement in this direction, but the direction must be committed, decisive, and backed with substantial money. Secondly, the Forces need to invest in the equipment to deliver these troops to the theatre. Given that we have a pretty decent Air Force, an aircraft carrier - a real one - is actually a really good idea. Then the next time we are called upon to fight alongside our American brothers, we'll be "ready, aye, ready!"

Oh, and please pray for the families of the Special Forces members killed yesterday, and visit Soldiers' Angels and the United Warrior Survivor Foundation to help out.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Amnesty Int'l dives into the swamp

I sure am proud of having a President and a Vice-President who will stand up to idiocy. (Amnesty Int'l calling Gitmo a "Gulag"). (Sorry, I think you have to register to read it, but it isn't a huge hassle).

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Ms. Stronach's Defection

Letter to CBC's The Current yesterday:

"First of all, that was a very well done interview with Ms. Stronach. Mr. Germain asked almost all of the hard questions, and put them forcefully. From someone I've often thought of as a fellow who throws softballs to Liberals, it was a pleasant surprise. The only big question I think was missed was 'It appears that you had made up your mind to defect prior to sitting in on a Conservative Party strategy meeting on Sunday [according to an interview I heard with Chuck Strahl yesterday]. Did you not have an ethical obligation to advise the party before that meeting that you were leaving, or, at the very least, excuse yourself from that meeting - even if you were only considering defecting at the time?'

Secondly, Heather McIvor as a political talking head is down to about 0 on the credibility scale. I've been listening to her on CBC radio for years, and she has been a fairly consistent shill for the Liberals, and a very consistent slanderer of the Tories, and before that, Reform and the Alliance. Belinda Stronach never was the heart and soul of the Ontario Tories, and that comment about Paul Martin being seen as a "...vulture feeding on the carcass of the Conservative Party" betrays her motivation to sell the idea that the Tories are dead. The fortunes of the Tories do not rise and fall with their ability to sell themselves to ultra-left liberals like Ms. McIvor - sorry, Ms. McIvor, but they're not actually looking for your vote. Your other two commentators were much more balanced in their perspectives, although it's interesting that no one seemed to see this as a potentially huge boost for both Stephen Harper and for Conservative Party fortunes. Let's see, they've a) lost a mole from their ranks before she could do more damage, b)lost a high-profile but weak MP who has always been seen as an awkward fit for the party and an unapologetically extreme social liberal who was unacceptable to the base, c)had the base's enthusiasm instantly stoked by a back-stabbing defection, and d) lost a problem MP to Paul Martin - who may be smiling now, but who has just let a clearly untrustworthy person into his cabinet. The net result of this whole affair might be a further cementing of the reputation of the Liberal Party as the party of sleaze and the ethically challenged. The irony of putting one of those ethically challenged persons in charge of cleaning up the sponsorship mess seems to be lost on Mr. Martin."

(I write this as I listen to your replay of Susan Murray's report on Scott Brison's defection. Gee, isn't it a surprise how CBC political reporters feel right at home working for the Liberal Party? Susan Murray as Scott Brison's communications director, Jason Moscovitz as VP of Public Affairs at the BDC...)

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

CBC & the BC Election debate

I listened to the 1st 45 minutes on the radio. The way I heard it, the commie twins were throwing nerf balls, and Mr. Campbell was scoring body blows. Perhaps I am somewhat biased, tho. I popped up CBC radio's web article, and immediately experienced that jarring disconnect that inevitably accompanies input from "blue state" reporters. They invited me to write, so I did:

'"Campbell's credibility questioned during debate" - nice headline. Gee, I wonder how the Communist Broadcasting Corp. is going to spin this story?

"VANCOUVER – Premier Gordon Campbell was forced onto the defensive during Tuesday night's leaders' debate, as NDP Leader Carole James accused him as someone who can't be trusted to keep his campaign commitments. " - I don't know which debate you were listening to, but the one I heard had Mr. Campbell hammering Ms. James & Ms. Carr repeatedly - and this from a guy who could make the Gettysburg Address sound like a shopping list. Ms. James' lame attempts to pin those "broken promises" assertions on him had all the impact of tissue paper hitting the floor. What was it that Clinton guy used to say? "It's the economy, stupid!"

"She began by getting the premier to promise he would not privatize the Insurance Corporation of B.C. and B.C. Hydro." - umm, except she didn't, and neither did he. He phrased his answer carefully, and it wasn't a blanket commitment to never privatize ICBC & BC Hydro - at least I didn't hear it that way. I think Mr. Campbell is quite intent on keeping that door open this time around.'

Monday, April 11, 2005

The ABA is as daft as the CBA noted by Thomas Sowell, here. Everywhere, it seems, poor leaders rise up to campaign for their sinecures. Criticism is good, people! If no one criticizes Judges, they go around thinking they're doing a good job! Which is not to say that there are not a lot of hard-working Judges out there, or Judges who are doing a good job - it is just that the two don't necessarily go together. A person can work his tail off and turn out garbage - I have experience in this area, really.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Maybe it's just the time of year...

Why am I so bored? My level of interest in life waxes and wanes inexplicably. Perhaps it is the rebound effect of being hyper-engaged in "issues" for a period of time. After the US election I lost interest in current events for a time, and this last two weeks have been pretty intense, given Terry Shiavo's situation, and now Pope John Paul II. (May God welcome him into Glory and a well-deserved rest). I don't know how these full-time media people keep their energy up. I note that Mr. Lileks is taking a break from blogging. I have often thought that I wanted his life, or at least several aspects of it, but I don't know that I could keep up the pace.

I'm almost entirely "caught up" in my work life. Perhaps that has removed the great slab of tyrannically urgent tasks that are generally hanging over my head, and it has left an empty space that I'm not quite sure how to fill. I'm sure this is an opportunity for reflection, for prayer, for seeking God's Will & planning based on what He shows me. I pray that I will take the opportunity...

Thursday, March 31, 2005

CBA Officialdom: Take Note

Courtesy of View From the Right: "In 1895, future U.S. president and Chief Justice William Howard Taft, then a federal circuit court judge, wrote:
'The opportunity freely and publicly to criticize judicial action is of vastly more importance to the body politic than the immunity of courts and judges from unjust aspersions and attack. Nothing tends more to render judges careful in their decisions and anxiously solicitous to do exact justice than the consciousness that every act of theirs is to be submitted to the intelligent scrutiny and candid criticism of their fellow men. In the case of judges having a life tenure [i.e. federal judges], indeed, their very independence makes the right freely to comment on their decisions of greater importance, because it is the only practicable and available instrument in the hands of a free people to keep such judges alive to the reasonable demands of those they serve.'
What Taft says is so basic, so indispensable, and yet, in today's world, it sounds like an ancient, forgotten tongue. Far from freely commenting on Supreme Court judges, our political establishment and the public treat them like near-royalty, bowing and scraping before them like courtiers. Look at the unctuousness that prevails at any public event at which Supreme Court justices, particularly the liberal justices, are invited as speakers. In our age of self-esteem and denial of objective standards, the more shameless the judges become in their transgression of the laws and Constitution, the more respect they get." (Lawrence Auster) [italics are mine].

That turned up when I googled "impeaching federal judges" in the light of Terry Shiavo's death sentence and torture at the hands of the Florida State and Federal judiciary. Anyone who has ever appeared on a regular basis in Canadian courts would recognize the wisdom of President Taft's words. It also appears that Mr. Auster has been listening to our Prime Minister. "Bowing and scraping", indeed.