Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Who Will Oversee Flaherty?

January's orgy - the Budget - was full of so many spending announcement's that it boggled my little-pecker mind. Who, I wondered, was going to oversee all the spending? Surely Finance Minister Friggin' Flaherty was going to need some help?

"Okay," I said to self, "No worries, we have an Auditor General and a Parliamentary Budget Officer. What could possibly go wrong?"

THEN I remembered this mid-January National Post story:

OTTAWA -- Canada's budget officer Kevin Page says... [he is being 'systematically undermined' in] his work .... Mr. Page pulled no punches in a written plea to party leaders, urging MPs and senators to bring "clarity" to the confusion over his mandate ... [Mr. Page] argues ... interference in the management of his office is preventing him from doing the oversight he believes he was hired to do - at a time of economic upheaval when every dollar counts.... Mr. Page says it's up to parliamentarians to decide what they expect from the post.

"In order for me to fulfill the legislated mandate I require restoration of the PBO budget ... and ongoing and greater clarity from parliamentarians on the independence and operating model of the PBO function."

.... the embattled budget officer says he needs more independence to manage his office. The office deals with potentially politically explosive issues, such as studies into the sale of assets, the auto bailout, and the risks of ongoing deficits, so it needs protection from reprisals if it publishes reports that don't sit well with the government.... Some speculate the hiring delays and budget cut will effectively squeeze Mr. Page out of a job and that it wouldn't be happening without the government's blessing... "

AND now Friggin' Flaherty wants to have carte blanche authority over a new $3 Billion discretionary chequing account???

No Thanks!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Karma's a Bitch! Isn't is Cheney?

Re: 'the finger' - SAME TO YOU, YOU MOTHER-FUCKER! Good riddance!

Funny, how you came to office intent on breaking American democratic ideals.

But now it is you who are leaving broken!

Justice at last!

Don't let the door hit you wheelchair on the way out!

You fucking prick!

May you suffer and endure a mercilessly long 'Gitmo-esque' retirement!

"Cool" is no longer a state of mind: It is now a Head of State

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Hockey Fighting Premier Floyd Roland & Tired Premier Gary Doer

By jumpins', Don Cherry must be having a wet dream tonight!

Okay, I know it's a crappy pic, but do you see the BIG guy in the scrum above? Yeah, the gray-haired one. He's the Premier of the North West Territories. His name is Roland Floyd - LOOK at his size in relation to the others.

So what's the big deal? Well, and-I-kid-you-not, he's just received "three-game suspension" from his local Yellowknife Hockey League for dropping his gloves!

Face it, in today's world he's the kinda' politician you want fighting for you. When your Premier meets with his federal and provincial counterparts do you want a shrinking violet? Of course not. You want somebody who, when things get "heated", keeps playing and stays in the "battle". Now, I've always thought Newfoundland's Danny Williams was the kinda' guy one wanted fighting for their rights. Love him or hate him, he's the toughest pol around. Yet, in light of this news about Premier Floyd, I must say - I am reconsidering. I can tell you one thing for frigging' sure, you don't want a Gary Doer fighting for you.

Clearly not in Premier Floyd's league, Doer's days as a "feisty forward" are far behind him.

Here in Manitoba, as 'dynamic-doer' gears up for the coming First Minister''s Meeting, it is apparent that we could use somebody with more elan - a dash of panache. Sadly, all we are likely to get is more pablum.

Loathe to take a chance, Manitoba Premier Gary Doer (the safest man in politics) will do nothing near as bold as 'dropping the gloves' at the coming gathering. He will do what he always does. Take what he can get, push no further, and run with the money.

Long-in-the-tooth and afraid to roar, Doer will be sure to refrain from pressuring Ottawa to correct its waning fiscal commitment to Health Care. Nor, will he try to force Harper to meet the federal government's fiduciary duty to Canada's First Nations People. And, most e'ffn certainly, he will not (under any circumstances), advocate for the true underclass in his province: the sick and the marginalized.

No. Instead, Doer will take whatever money he can get. Return victorious(?) and give a 'third way' speech on the need for amicable inter-governmental relations and the preservation of 'sound' fiscal policy. He will not mention the perpetual poverty in our province. Later he will likely issue a banal news-release on his government's commitment to the poor.

NDP'er, my ass!

And next year? What of 'next year'?

On the upside, most
Manitoban's are likely to remain secure and solvent. Doer's disciples will tell you the coming 'quarters' will be viewed a success if all Manitoba manages to do is preserve the status-quo of the middle-class. Gaw'd, is there anything worse than 'bland' ambition? Too bad the most Manitoba's fixed underclass has to look forward under Doer is another year that will be the same as last: worse or 'worser'.

This is not acceptable.

Manitoba deserves a fighter like Roland Floyd. `Bout time she got a new Premier.


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Life in T.O. exacts a heavy price - even on its dogs

The cost of an urban existence is getting too high. We all know T.O. life is hard enough - but when it starts zapping the pecker off pooches?

"Dog electrocuted in Toronto park"

TORONTO — A dog was electrocuted Tuesday after trying to relieve itself near a hydro pole in a west-end Toronto neighbourhood, the second occurrence in three months.

A 25-year-old man had been walking his five-year-old Labrador-poodle dog, Mrak, in High Park around 2:15 a.m., when the dog stepped on a metal plate at the base of a Toronto Hydro pole.

"The dog instantly lost consciousness and went into convulsions," said Toronto police Staff Sgt. Mary Shaw.

Toronto Fire and Toronto Emergency Services also attended the scene.

"CPR was performed on the dog for about 20 minutes. It was then transported to an emergency animal clinic where he later passed away," Shaw said.

Police say Toronto Hydro crews discovered a live electrical wire at the top of the pole.

"We don't have the cause of death for the dog established yet," said Karen Evans, a Toronto Hydro spokeswoman.

"We have . . . cordoned off the area and have begun an investigation."

Evans added that there is no apparent risk to the public.

The company is currently doing an "infrared investigation" for all hydro equipment throughout the city, following a similar death last November, when a German shepherd was electrocuted in the same west-end neighbourhood.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Crime & Punishment - Eastwood Style

Was looking for a quote on the 'death penalty' in another context. Came across this interview with Clint Eastwood.

Reductionist for sure. But it is an interesting encapsulation of how many American's see this issue in strictly 'black & white' terms.

"Although he [Eastwood] describes himself as 'libertarian', he is unapologetically in favour of the death penalty. 'I guess it's because I have a very fertile imagination and I always sympathise with the victim. I never sympathise with the accused unless there's a chance the accused is not guilty, but I certainly don't ever sympathise with the criminal. I mean, I'm not one of these guys who sits around saying, "Gee, I mean, the person had a strange childhood and that's why he's doing this horrible thing. Poor Jeffrey Dahmer. He's just had a bad childhood and that's why he's eating people." Wait a second! This person should be removed from the planet.'

Later, when the conversation has somehow strayed on to Islamic fundamentalism, Eastwood is similarly outspoken. 'Imagine somebody telling some 12-, 13-, 14-year-old kid: "Put on a vest, go out and blow up people and then you'll go to Heaven and there'll be 72 virgins." I mean, imagine the stupidity of that from our point of view. You think, wait a second, you don't even know if there is a hereafter and, if there is, what's so great about virgins?'"

Guess there's no shades of gray in this 78 year old!

Monday, January 5, 2009

G.W. Bush's Presidential Library - $300 Million?

"We're working on a conceptual design for the building," said Mark Langdale, president of the George W. Bush Foundation. The president will help develop the $300 million structure, which will include a library, museum and policy institute.

Okay, in light of this story one has to ask the obvious question: Bush Library, conceptual design, policy institute? Does it really take $300 million to conceptualize a void? $300 million for a vacuum? Surely not!

Simpson's Mea Culpa - Simply Wrong Again

The doyen of The Globe & Fail opining, Jeff Simpson, was right to criticize his own circumspect record of 'oppsy!' commentary in 2008. It takes a big man to admit when he has erred. And for this Simpson should be applauded.

Too bad he missed the real issue - i.e. why upper-classed T.O. based writers are ill-equipped to pontificate on how the lived reality of the rest of Canada influences its political choices.

To be sure though, he did admit to finally learning the lesson that: "After all these years in the business, one should know that the unexpected is the expected" - huh? Sweet farting Euripides, did this just now dawn on him after 30+ years in the biz that this was a possibility?

Egad! What a Pinhead!