Thursday, March 31, 2011

Sad election victories. . . .

A few Electoral Victories - (Feel free to add any that might be of interest)

Richard Nixon 1972 - Won with 60.7% of the Popular vote. (Keep in mind this AFTER the Watergate break-in)

NAZI Party 1933 Germany - Won with 43.9% of the Vote.

George Wallace 1962 Alabama Gubernatorial Elections - Won with 92% of the Vote!

Jorg Haider - 1999 Gubernatorial Election in Carinthia. (Percentage unknown)

Kurt Waldheim - 1972 Elected as Secretary General of the UN.
                          - 1986 Elected President of Austria with 49.6% of the Vote. (Despite his NAZI past)

Sometimes the People elect the wrong guy, the dangerous guy, the anti-democratic evil guy.

Stay tuned.

A Pun for Fun. . . .

Don't mess with the Johann! (Sabastian Bach, that is). Maybe that is just too obscure?

Don't Mess with the Johann!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

What a Endearing dictator we have. . . . .

Running rough-shod over democracy. Now we know why they want to get rid of the long-registry.

Golem Baird. . . . .

John Baird says "Where's my precious . . . . majority?"

Golem Baird

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Emperors new clothes. . . . .

In the middle of the Campaign, Mr. Harper suddenly, inexplicably dons a new suit at all his public appearances. Several members of the press corps attempt to report on this fact and suddenly start choking.

Steve Vader.

Money and Democracy don't mix. . . .

This is precisely why democracy means very little and will never mean much within the context of Capitalism. Those with the most money will always set the agenda and control the discourse, it is as simple as that. Where there is a power imbalance, there cannot be an equal exchange of ideas. Anyone who really believes in democracy would do everything that they could to remove money from the equation of social and political discourse.

Monday, March 28, 2011

The election and the future. . . . .

This country is in the midst of a genuine crisis. And perhaps the most tragic element in this national distress is the fact that a very large portion of the country’s population is blithely unaware of this crisis. The crisis is one of constitutional identity. We have a government that has clearly demonstrated that it has utter contempt for the constitution of this country as well as for the democratic principles that should govern the country and its primary political institutions. This is not, of course, new. Many countries have witnessed the rise of political groups that have actively thwarted constitutional principles and democratic institutions. But any country that faces these problems must make a decision, do we stand by the constitution or don’t we? Canada faces this very challenge.

In a constitutional system such as ours the symbolic sovereign is the King or Queen. This sovereignty flows down from the monarch to the representatives in the legislative House. Thus, the representatives as a group constitute the de facto sovereignty of the nation as a whole. The Harper government has tried very hard to thwart this perception and attempted to create the idea that the party with the greatest number of seats (or even the office of the Prime Minister) constitutes the sovereign power of the nation. In action this has meant not only that the Harper regime has attempted to spin the facts in such a way as to change the perception of the reality of the constitution, but they have also, on numerous occasions, attempted to ignore the will of the House on issues of documents, directives, and access to information. These are very real and dangerous violations of constitutional principle.

Of course, taken in isolation, no single one of these actions threatens to dismantle our democratic system. This problem is much broader than this. This is the question that people must ask themselves when deciding on the next government; if we reward this government for undermining the constitution, what will that mean for future governments? Serious political changes often happen incrementally and the constitutional envelope that this government has been pushing, will be pushed that little bit further by the subsequent governments, and our democratic institutions will slowly wither away before our eyes, though few will notice until it is too late. If Canadians reward this government with a majority after they have so badly chipped away at the democratic principles of the nation, there will be little to stop them in the future. And the government that comes after them will know for certain that they have no obligation to obey the will of the House, they will have no obligation to provide information to the public or their elected representatives, they will feel no need to obey the laws of the land, they will feel free to prorogue parliament whenever they see fit etc.

At some level this election has little to do with this or that particular policy or program. Rather, the election is about whether we will stand up for the constitution and send a message to political parties that, regardless of your policy choices, we will not let you dismantle the constitution for your own political desire. Because we can be certain that if we think this Conservative government has abused its power and ignored the laws as defined by the constitution, if we reward them for doing so then the next Liberal Government will make Harper’s gang look like a bunch of principled democrats. Thus Conservatives who are tempted to offer Harper a majority should ask themselves this simple question: will I be ok with a future Liberal government ignoring the will of the House, eliminating freedom of information laws, closing down parliament whenever they want to, and refusing to show costs of major government programs? If many of the things that the party you support, are things that you would object to if another party were doing them, then you have to think seriously about your continued support. And if you don’t then you are essentially writing a blank check to future governments to pursue strategies to which you actually object. It may seem of little importance now but in forty years or so when your kids are raising your grandchildren, do you want them to enjoy the constitutional protections and advantages that we enjoy?

Friday, March 25, 2011

Sonnet to Dr. Johnson. . . .

Dr. Samuel Johnson has been sinking somewhat into the historical mists in recent years. An odd, sometimes aggravating figure, there is much to admire about him and his memory deserves to be kept alive.

To Dr. Johnson.

Oh dear Dr. Johnson, you silly Tory fool,
If only I had learned about you when I went to school.
A rotund lexicographer, an Anglican and sap,
Always glad to have a drink, relax and take a nap.
I hate you and I love you Sam, you’re foolish yet your great,
I’ve stood in awe at old Westminster where you lied in state.
You’re politics were empty, you’re Shakespeare doesn’t please,
You’re life of poor old Richard Savage brings me to my knees.
But your tale of Rasselas left much to be admired,
And your grand text, English Poets, never left me tired.
But mostly its your person, Sam, that really makes me smile,
You were tall, robust and odd, and capable of bile,
But for a friend in dire need, you’d walk a London mile! 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

My new temporary blog. . . . .

Depressed over the anniversary of my father's death and the coming of the election which promises to result in many horrendously negative ads on the part of the Conservatives, I launched a new temporary blog with my daughter Cairo.

You can find it here.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Tories believe in Due Process. . . . NOT! . . .

With a new scandal appearing each week, it is getting to the point where one could compile a heafty book on the missteps and misdeeds of this government. From attempting to 'rename' the government to fraudulently buying elections, from lying to the House or closing it down or just ignoring its motions, to paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to former appointees to ensure their silence, this government has clearly lost the moral authority to govern, if indeed it ever possessed any in the first place. And yet of all the terrible, criminal, immoral, anti-democratic things this government has done over the past few years, I think one of the most amusing things that this regime has done has been to attempt to place itself on the moral high-ground through a supposedly 'tough on crime' stance. Not only is their crime stance almost uniformly immoral in that it looks only to punitive measures that will result in more criminals who are more effective, but given their complete disregard for the law when it comes to their own actions it is monumentally ironic too. Everyone who has paid attention to this criminal organization will immediately know what I am talking about.

Conservative MP Tom Lukiwski raised the stakes on this grand narrative irony today when he claimed that "In Canada we respect the rule of law, which includes due process." Really Mr. Lukiwski? Really? The way your party respected due process in the case of your own MP, Helena Guergis who has still never even been given the respect by your party to hear the reasons that she was ousted from the caucus when she was never indicted for anything let alone convicted? Is this the way your respect due process Mr. Lukiwski? No. The CP has demonstrated over and over again that it has no interest in due process or  the law or what is right. The CP is interested in itself and its power which it will stop at no fraudulent means to achieve and maintain while it systematically dismantles the institutions of democracy and law that this country is supposed to represent.

No, Mr. Lukiwski, you do not care about due process and you never will. Instead you will continue to the bitter end to do everything you can to undermine the law and democracy in order to wield power and to remake this country into a modern Pottersville where the dregs and the filth of society corrupt our culture in order to make a few bucks profit while living in gated communities where they don't have to see the results of their immoral and corrupt capitalism. The Conservatives are wrapped in toxic poison of hatred and immorality which is spewed from the mouths of men like John Baird and Pierre Poilievre whose truncated and withered sense of humanity is matched only by the miniature size of their shrivelled and atrophied capacity for compassion. Because they are morally empty beings without souls they will do anything they can to poison the rest of us and to destroy the hopes of civilization in a corrupted orgy of enmity and spleen in which he only human emotion left to us is relentless and savage acrimony.

Moral authority to govern? I think not. Time to wake up from the national nightmare Canada and look for a way forward to a better society.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

All Hail Our King . . . .

So I guess it is official . . . . .

L'etat c'est moi

Anyone who still had any faith that a democracy is still ours, think again.

Illegal governments and the loss of compassion. . . . .

Over the last few years the Liberal Party of Canada has paid the worst kind of political price - the price for trying to be too honest. When he Sponsorship scandal became a real issue the Liberal Party did not pretend it was an "accounting" problem, but instead they made it a public issue and through an inquiry made the entire process of scandal and illegality a genuinely public crime. If instead, like the Conservatives have done, the LPC had just maintained denial and claimed that the real problem was simply one of public perception, then we would have seen another four years of PM Martin. Unfortunately the Conservatives, and I am sure the Liberals have learned from this mistake and we will probably not, in our lifetime, see another public inquiry into a potential misstep of a sitting government; it just won't happen again.

But it should be clear to anyone who is not just blindly partisan for the Conservative Party that the present so-called 'in and out' scandal is just as bad, and arguably worse, than the sponsorship scandal that brought down the last Liberal government. If you listen to a number of the Conservative candidates who were seeking election at the time and whose accounts were involved, it is very clear that this was an intentional attempt to get around the election laws of the country in order essentially to win an election illegally. And unlike the sponsorship scandal in which a handful of insiders tried to cheat the system to make money for themselves (an petty criminal activity that seems to go on everywhere all the time), the 'in and out' scandal goes to the office of the Prime Minister and his most senior advisors who intentionally subverted democracy for political gain.

But all of this probably doesn't matter because a large portion of the Canadian public (like the 'public' everywhere) just doesn't really care about their government being honest or legal as long as there is enough wealth for Bay Street. Just look at the recent questionare that revealed that many Canadians believe that people who are poor are in that situation because they are lazy or simply don't want to work. This misperception is parroted even by people who appear on the NDP Blogs website. This misperception is wrong in so many ways that it hardly seems worth discussing but it is also so widespread that it obviously needs to be discussed a great deal. The vast majority of people in Canada who live below the poverty line have jobs, many of them two or more jobs, and they work hard. In many cases they work harder than those of us who are not below the poverty line. And giving people a helping hand in almost all cases doesn't make people lazy or careless. If you believe that to be true you are either blindly ideological or you lack the empathy and real world experience to understand people's lives.

This recent poll and the fact that the Conservative Party continues to maintain any significant public popularity suggest that Canada is slowly becoming Americanized in the worst way and the Conservative efforts of the past few years to create a more selfish, more brutal, less compassionate society is working. If the Conservative Party is reelected in the next election despite the Prime Minister himself attempting to subvert democracy then it will be clear that the future of this country is very dark indeed.