"Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!"
-Homer J. Simpson

Monday, December 22, 2008

Policy, NOT Bickering.

I have made no secret over the fact that I am bit of a policy wonk.

I joined the NDP because I agreed with (or thought I agreed with) the policies of the party. Here in Saskatchewan that means balanced budgets, strong crowns, public medicare and investments in social development (for example public housing, schools and universities, and a decent social safety net).

I think the above would be considered fairly non-controversial at an NDP gathering.

But there is one issue in Saskatchewan that is growing to be more important that most other issues, and it is one that our party has a split on.

I am talking about the environment.

There are a lot of facets to this split, there is the pro/anti nuke groups, there is the pro/anti oilsands groups and there are the overall "we have to be moderate and can't do anything that the SP and the media will use to say we are anti-business" group and there is the "this is the global crisis of our generation and the defining issue of our times" group.

Obviously I am in the second one.

But I am more that willing to have the discussion, and the debate. I want to discuss ideas and beliefs and at the end of the day vote on it and let the best side win.

That is why I joined a political party to begin with.

But what worries me is that the so-called leadership race that is taking place in the Saskatchewan NDP these days cannot be called anything of the sort. Look, again, it is no secret that I want a race. I want lots of people in the race. And that is not due to any anti-linginfelter sentiment. I am genuinely not opposed to Link as leader.

What I am opposed to is the stupid, stupid people he has working "for" him.

When it comes to the discussion, the Link supporters are his biggest problem.

I have linked to a couple of discussion groups in the past over at rabble and I will link to another one now. You don't have to spent too much time reading it to see that there is a vocal supporter of Linginfelter that is going out of his way to make an ass of himself.

If this was an isolated incident then that's fine, you have to expect some craziness from supporters during a leadership race, that is to be expected.

The problem is that this is not isolated. It is happening all over babble and other forums. It is happening on facebook, where fake identities are being created for the sole purpose of creating groups to oppose other potential leadership candidates. And then these fake identities go around on the attack. And there is blog posters galore. Heck, one of them has been on here in the past making all sorts of over-the-top attacks. And then there was a letter to the editor in the Regina newspaper from a Link supporter that was personal and way, way over the top.

It is fine to support Link, it is quite another to launch vicious personal attacks all over the place.

Now again, don't get me wrong, I have decided that for better or for worse, even if I don't think I agree with all of his policies, Link is at least willing to let his name stand. That says something about the man. I might have my issues with him as leader, but they are about policy, not about him as a person. From everything I know about him he is a decent man, who obviously cares enough about the party to offer to lead it when we might be looking at 3, 7, or heaven forbid, 11 years without being the government.

Again, that says something about the man.

But the thing that bothers me is the people around him. I don't mean his small brain-trust (although I have some concerns about them) and even the "young professionals" group that he is trying to build. That's fine.

The people working for him online, and in the paper, are complete dicks though.

So this is my problem. Either he doesn't get that this is making him look bad, which would show poor judgement and someone who does not "get" the internet. Or else this is his team's plan.

Either way I have a problem with that.

As I said at the top of this post, I want this campaign to be about ideas. I want to have the nuclear debate, and I want to have the oilsands debate and I want to have the environment debate. And I want to support or oppose a leader based on those ideas. And if my preferred candidate does not win, then I want to pick myself up and work for the man or woman that does win.

And maybe I have to wait for someone else to get in the race for this to happen.

But in the meantime, if Dwain and his people read this blog (and I have no idea if they do or not - I kind of doubt it), please, for the love of god, call off the attack dogs.

Try putting out some policy so we can talk about that.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

This is a Bit Much

So I wrote a post back in November about the Sask NDP leaership race called "when will this race heat up?"

I guess winter is a bad time to ask these sorts of questions.

Nothing has happened yet.

No one else has announced.

I thought the end of session would be the prompt for the sitting MLAs to get involved but I guess not. However, there is no excuse for those who are not in caucus that could be announcing (Pederson, Thomson, Wiebe, Tchorzewski) and yet still nothing.

So the list still looks like this:

Deb Higgin
Cam Broten
Len Taylor
Yens Pederson
** Dwain Lingenfelter **
Andrew Thomson
Frank Quennell
Nettie Wiebe
Dion Tchorzewski
Pat Atkinson

And I am starting to wonder if that is ever going to change. Has the entire party just decided that Lingenfelter is the one? Even if you support Link you have to want a race. A race is good for the party and it gives all of us a chance to discuss the issues of the day and decide where we stand on them.

On the bright side it seems that Link is starting to build-up some of the grassroots activities that we need.


We’re building a network of volunteers who will take on the job of monitoring local newspapers and radio and television stations, so they can weigh in on political issues by phoning the call-in shows and writing letters to the editor.

I am very interested to see if this works. So far the only letter to the editor has been a pretty stupid one from Brian Sklar. I doubt this was the idea. In fact, that letter probably made the Link camp look stupid as well and I doubt they are pleased by it.

I am glad to see that using e-mail to get facts and figures out to party members is being done. There is the commonwire that is generated at our provincial office, which is pretty good but only comes out every so often.

I would dearly LOVE to be comparing and contrasting the leadership candidates' approach to this sort of stuff, their use of the web and new media in general, but there is only one guy in the race so guess I will cover him until things starts to happen.

For the record, this is what they call the "first announcer advantage" If you are the only game in town, you attract 100% of the attention.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

When will the Sask NDP Leadership Race Heat Up?

This is first sign of movement in months.

Yens Pedersen, the party president who has temporarily stepped down as he contemplates his own leadership run, said recently he's still weighing his own options and seeing who else gets in the race
I will be fairly disappointed if there is not at least 3 or 4 people in the race.

The list of possibilities is still large.

Deb Higgin
Cam Broten
Len Taylor
Yens Peterson
** Dwain Lingenfelter **
Andrew Thompson
Frank Quennell
Nettie Wiebe
Dion Tchorzewski
Pat Atkinson

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Babble on SaskNDP Leadership Race

So I have spent most of the morning on babble looking around and I have really only found these two threads.

Calvert Leaving

Sask NDP Leadership Race

I find it hard to belive these are the only two threads on the topics, so if people smarter than me know of any others can you link to them in the comments? Thanks :-)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Sask NDP in the Leiglsature

James Woods has an interesting little article goin every Friday in the Leader Post these days. It seems to just be a bit of scuttlebutt from around the legislature. I found this very interesting.


NDP Leader Lorne Calvert has fired the most questions from the Opposition benches. He was followed by corrections critic Kevin Yates, who apparently remains in good enough graces despite his acknowledged behind-the-scenes stumping for Dwain Lingenfelter as NDP Leader when Calvert was still premier.
Is this an attempt by the caucus to keep a lid on things? I don't get to see the house every day (I try to watch QP via internet streaming at work) but I haven't really seen Deb Higgins or Frank Quennell ask any questions yet. Maybe if they declared for leader they would et more questions :-)

At the end of the day, Calvert is probably one of the better questioners for the NDP so it is probably a good thing that he is asking the most.

Oh well, no matter what I assume the NDP convention will be better than the Liberals':

What if you didn't hold a convention, and nobody knew?

The provincial Liberal Party has had a low profile since failing to elect any MLAs to the legislature in last fall's election, a repeat of what happened in 2003.

The party has found a new leader, Ryan Bater, but Liberal faithful won't be gathering to celebrate that fact this weekend.

The party's annual convention was originally scheduled to take place in Regina today.

But when reporters called to find out the convention schedule, they were informed it had actually been cancelled more than a month ago, due to the fact it would come so closely after the hubbub of the federal election.


Yep, you wouldn't want to have a convention 6 weeks after a federal election. That would be crazy :-)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Sask NDP Announces Leadership Convention

This looks interesting:


As was the case in the 2001 leadership race, the Saskatchewan NDP will once again use a one-member, one-vote balloting system with all party members in good standing eligible to take part. Party members will have the options of voting at the convention or by phone or over the internet in real-time the day of the convention. Mail in ballots will be available upon request.
Update: And Link is in

Supporters are beginning to declare for Dwain Lingenfelter in the NDP leadership race, but other potential contenders say they're feeling no pressure to immediately jump in the race.
Updater: And the posts begin

Over on the Wheatsheaf

For the record this makes the list:

Deb Higgin
Cam Broten
Len Taylor
Yens Peterson
** Dwain Lingenfelter **
Andrew Thompson
Frank Quennell
Nettie Wiebe
Dion Tchorzewski
Pat Atkinson

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Leadership Fights Begin

The first post taking on one side or the other (that I have found) has been posted. I hope that the party can keep this race positive and clean.


It appears that the NDP leadership is quickly turning into a one-person race. While this isn't entirely true, Mandryk wants you to believe that Lingenfelter is the only choice to beat Brad Wall, and that his only obstacle is an unforgiving membership.

I don't agree that it is a one person race. There is just one person declared.

If the rumours are true and this vote will happen in June, then there is a long way to go yet.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Sask NDP Leadership List keeps growing

So to add to my post from Friday, we now have this:


Thursday evening Lorne Calvert announced that he plans to give up his role as leader of the provincial New Democrats, opening up the gates for a leadership race. Several names like former Deputy Premier Dwaine Lingenfelter, Frank Quennel [sic] and Pat Atkinson have been mentioned. None of them have committed to taking a run at the position. It would appear applications are being accepted. And, there's a caucus veteran that could be considered. Yes, the next leader could come from Moose Jaw, in fact from the same constituency where Lorne Calvert got his start. Moose Jaw Wakamow NDP MLA Deb Higgins might give it a shot.
So the List looks like this so far (according to the media:)

Deb Higgin
Cam Broten
Len Taylor
Yens Peterson
Dwain Lingenfelter
Andrew Thompson
Frank Quennell
Nettie Wiebe
Dion Tchorzewski
Pat Atkinson

This is the first news source (that I have found) to add Atkinson to the list.

Friday, October 17, 2008

And the race is on...

So Calvert has finally announced that he is stepping down and so the speculation begins:


While some recent candidates and current caucus members including Deb Higgins (Moose Jaw Wakamow), Cam Broten (Saskatoon Massey Place), Len Taylor (The Battlefords) and Yens Pedersen (unsuccessful candidate in Regina South) are said to be among those who may vie for Calvert's job, the attention is likely to shift to former NDP premier Dwain Lingenfelter who retired from Saskatchewan politics in 2000 to pursue a job as vice-president with the Calgary-based oil company Nexen Inc.

The paper lists these people on Thursday, and then on Friday:


One contender well-positioned to make the case for youth, 30-year-old Saskatoon Massey Place MLA Cam Broten, took himself out of the race Friday.

But former finance minister Andrew Thomson, 41, who did not run for re-election in 2007, said he's actively considering a run.

[snip]

He also dismissed the critique of Saskatoon Meewasin MLA Frank Quennell, himself mulling a run, who noted Thursday that Lingenfelter likely has "higher unfavourables than most potential candidates."

[snip]

Meanwhile, Nettie Wiebe, who ran for the leadership in 2001 when Calvert was victorious, said she had not ruled out another run but it needs time for consideration after her narrow loss in Tuesday's federal election in Saskatoon-Rosetown-Biggar.

[snip]

But Regina lawyer Dion Tchorzewski, son of the late NDP icon Ed Tchorzewski, said Thursday he's heard the pitch of those seeking generational change and is considering a run.


So the List looks like this so far (according to the media:)

Deb Higgins
Cam Broten
Len Taylor
Yens Peterson
Dwain Lingenfelter
Andrew Thompson
Frank Quennell
Nettie Wiebe
Dion Tchorzewski

If even half of those people ran (and I would be surprised if there wasn't someone who ends up running that the media overlooked) that would be a great race. Women, Men, Regina, Saskatoon, Moose Jaw, Battlefords, Rural, Left, Right, Young, Mature, it's all there.

There is obviously some interesting times ahead.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I don't want to hear any whining about Vote Splitting

This blog has been quiet for the last couple of days as I was too busy working on the election campaign here in Saskatchewan.

Stephen Moore, the NDP candidate against Ralph Goodale put up a hell of a fight and exceeded expectations by a fair margin. The problem is that New Democrats in Wascana vote for Goodale.

But, is that a problem?

From a raw partisan perspective, yes. From the larger picture of stopping Harper and the Conservatives? Not so much I guess.

But what annoys the hell out of me is the continual Liberal whining about vote-splitting.

Typical headline:

Liberals blame vote-splitting

Liberals in Regina (other than Goodale) put out piece after piece saying that the only way to stop Harper in Saskatchewan was to vote Liberal, even thought everyone (including the Liberals who produced and distributed those flyers) knew that the NDP would place second in almost every seat in Saskatchewan (and in one case, second by a less than 300 votes).

For the Liberals, "strategic voting" means "voting for the Liberals."

And yet they then have the nerve to turn around and whine and complain that all the votes cast for the NDP were votes cast for Harper?

Bullshit.

Everyone who cast a vote in this election (for those few that did) voted for the party and the representative that they wanted. In Wascana, more people wanted Ralph Goodale and so they voted for him. He earned those votes for whatever reason, (they liked him, they wanted to stop Harper)

And the Liberal and Green candidates in Saskatoon Rosetown Biggar earned their votes to, and the NDP candidate did not earn enough (barely) to win the seat.

Is that the Liberals and Greens fault? No. It is the CONSERVATIVE VOTERS that gave that seat to the conservatives - not the Green and Liberal voters.

But I guarantee you this, the Liberals are licking their wounds now and talking about working with the NDP and all that but when push comes to shove, they will blame us for this loss, just like they still blame us for the loss of the Martin government.

Because Liberals believe that they have a divine right to govern.

They DESERVE votes because they just do. And if a citizen has the nerve to vote for a different party on the "left" (particularly when they feal the Liberals aren't doing a good job or representing the left) then the evil NDP have clearly tricked that voter into voting against the Liberals, because lord knows they are SUPPOSED to vote for the Liberals.

Quote from this morning:


"I think under any scenario where we lose seats, Dion must go," said a party strategist who has worked with Mr. Dion and his two predecessors.

Another long-time Liberal said last night: "it will be tough for him to have the ... authority to lead. We are the natural governing party."


Enough.

In places where vote-splitting elected a Conservative member, then the fault lies with the conservative voters, not the voters on the other side. The NDP should continue to convince voters that they are the best alternative to Stephen Harper and when they fall short (like in Rosetown Bigger) they should pick themselves up and try again.

That's what a party that has a vision and principles does.

We don't sit around and whine that we deserved a seat and it is the other parties fault we didn't get it.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I wonder where the Leaders stand on this issue?

National Post Editorial: Free trade with Europe is worth some concessions


For decades now, the idea of a Canada-Europe free trade agreement has been knocking around our halls of power. But until now, the first and in some ways most formidable barrier to progress has been getting the EU interested. If this week’s reports are to be believed, that problem now appears to be solved.

Yeah, but even the National Post concedes this:

Effectively joining the EU as a satellite participant would probably mean heavy concessions in such areas as labour standards and product labelling.

Just exactly what labour standards are we talking about here? I mean, don't most European countries have BETTER labour standards than Canada? Shirley this agreement wouldn't just be an excuse to attack the rights of working people, would it?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Sarah Palin: Head of Skate

I pee'd a little watching this:


Sunday, September 21, 2008

Google Trends and the Political Parties

So if you look at who is searching for the parties on google you get this snapshot:


But if you look at which websites are getting the most traffic (according to google) you get this:



So this tells me people are searching for information more about the NDP and the greens, but more people are visiting the Liberal and Conservative web pages. Now obviously the party websites are all the first items in google when you search, so shouldn't the search traffic correspond to the site traffic?

My working hypothesis is that there are obviously a large group of people out there who are not using search to get to the Liberal and Conservative web sites.

They are just going directly there. Without using google as an intermediary.

So this tells me that there are a large group of people who just go the the liberal and conservative homepages, do they have them bookmarked? Are these parties doing a better job or promoting their sites?

Or am I just missing something?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Taking it to Harper #4 - The Payoff


Pundits note that NDP leader Jack Layton has so far run a much more efficient campaign, relentlessly attacking the Conservatives' said lackluster social agenda.

The latest tracking "shows a dramatic tightening in the race for second spot, with the New Democrats now within striking distance of overtaking the Liberals," said Ekos president Frank Graves.

"If the alarm bells are not ringing already at Liberal headquarters, they should now," said Graves. "Jack Layton is simply connecting better with voters than Stephane Dion at this stage of the campaign."

"These trends only need to continue another few days for the NDP to pass the Liberals," commented Graves.

Link

Monday, September 15, 2008

Taking it to Harper #3


CBC’s Julie Van Dusen said the NDP leader is practically ignoring the Liberals and St├ęphane Dion and focusing his campaign on Harper.

“I was listening for the word Dion and I only heard it once,” Van Dusen said, “He’s making this into a two way race … marginalizing St├ęphane Dion and portraying himself as a potential PM.

To loud cheers and chants of “NDP, NDP," Layton again promised that his party would appoint a gas price ombudsman to keep tabs on oil companies.

“Harper says there’s nothing can be done about the gouging. I say that’s a defeatist attitude,” Layton said, “As prime minister, I’m going to watch your back, and if the gas companies collude on prices and if we catch them at it, we’ll prosecute them and the rip-offs will stop.”

He accused the prime minister of giving corporate tax breaks to big companies, including petroleum firms, as Canadians were paying record high prices and facing increasing hardship.


Link

Taking it to Harper #2


Despite opinion polls that suggest the Conservatives are gaining support among women, NDP Leader Jack Layton called Stephen Harper's government Sunday a disaster for gender issues in Canada.

"(Harper) does not like the pursuit of equality for women," Layton said in French to 100 supporters at a restaurant in Gatineau, Que.

"Harper is a catastrophe for women in Canada."

Layton pointed to the government's changes last year to groups funded by Status of Women Canada -- changes that included deleting the word "equality" from funding criteria.

Layton also criticized a $5- million cut to the agency's administrative budget, although the agency's overall budget was increased by $10 million in the previous budget.

He also said the cutting of the Court Challenges Program, which funded legal battles under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, has hurt women.

"There are very few women in Mr. Harper's cabinet. That's very evident in their policies."


Link

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Taking it to Harper


As he has done for much of the campaign, Layton all but ignored any mention of Liberal Leader Stephane Dion. Instead, he focused his attacks almost entirely on Harper.

"Unlike Stephen Harper I refuse to standby as jobs get packed up and shipped out of the country," he said.

He said Harper has given corporations "an unlimited licence to pollute the air that your kids breathe."

The one time that Layton mentioned Dion, he attacked the Liberal leader's "Green Shift" carbon emissions plan.

Link

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Green's Overall Strategy

The whole Buckdog/GPC lawsuit fiasco is, to my mind, indicative of the broader strategy of the green party (and in particular the green bloggers) in this election.

The greens (as a relatively young and inexperienced) party are falling into the exact same trap that the NDP fell into for years. Let me lay out the NDP follies.

For years the NDP knew that there was a group of voters that occasionally voted Liberal, occasionally voted NDP. (hence the whole 'lend me your vote' thing recently.) There are many in our party who for years and years advocated attacking the Liberals so that those voters would "wake up" and vote for the 'true party' - the NDP.

What this analysis was missing that for these swing voters, the calculation wasn't "which party better represents me" but "which party comes close enough to representing me, but also will stop the right-wing forces" which in a first-past-the-post system, is a perfectly reasonable strategy.

Lately, the NDP have woken up to this fact and now they are running straight-on at the Conservatives, rather than wasting their time on the Liberals. This is not only good for the NDP, but is good for ALL progressives. The more discredited the Conservatives are, the less likely the true swing voter (who can go any way at any time) is likely to vote for them. That person may not end up voting NDP, but they may end up voting Liberal, or Green, but that is OK (in the general sense, if not in my partisan sense) becuase what we have in common is (if only slightly) more than what seperates us from the Conservatives.

Not only that, but it is a more honest campaign. I would much rather attack the forces of the true right-wing rather than attack the only psedo-right-wing Liberal Party of Canada.

What is particularly interesting is that the Green Party and Elisabeth May, deep down, get this. Hence the whole last week of the campaign strategy to ask voters to vote Liberal to stop the Conservatives. But why not say - vote Liberal, or NDP or Green to stop the Conservatives?

Because the Greens are caught in the same trap that the NDP have been caught in for years, focusing on fighting over a small piece of the pie, rather than trying to make that pie bigger. that is why they would rather sue a NDP blogger for posting a video that a Conservative blogger made.

I hope that with time, the Greens will grow up, just like the New Democrats have. Let all of the left0wing parties attack the right-wing parties and let the voters decide which one is the better alternative.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Classic

Monday, September 01, 2008

And the name of the Band? "Hookers and Blow"

I love Republican Conventions...



Friday, August 29, 2008

Less than 4 weeks ago, Sarah Palin was praising Obama

On August 4th, Alaska Governor (and now the Republican VP pick) had the following posted on the Alaska government website:


"I am pleased to see Senator Obama acknowledge the huge potential Alaska’s natural gas reserves represent in terms of clean energy and sound jobs,” Governor Palin said. “The steps taken by the Alaska State Legislature this past week demonstrate that we are ready, willing and able to supply the energy our nation needs."

In a speech given in Lansing, Michigan, Senator Obama called for the completion of the Alaska natural gas pipeline, stating, “Over the next five years, we should also lease more of the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska for oil and gas production. And we should also tap more of our substantial natural gas reserves and work with the Canadian government to finally build the Alaska natural gas pipeline, delivering clean natural gas and creating good jobs in the process.”

Governor Palin also acknowledged the Senator’s proposal to offer $1,000 rebates to those struggling with the high cost of energy.




Oh, yeah, and while we are on it:

Friday, August 22, 2008

Election Speculation

This one seems to be ramping up more than usual, I just got told the NDP is planning for Harper to call it in the first week of September (for October) AND that all the Conservative Ministers were told to be in Ottawa next week AND that conservatives have been clearing their schedules through September/October.

Update: Looks like the Liberals are hearing similar things

Sunday, August 17, 2008

What if you threw a leadership contest and nobody came?

From the Leader Post:


Ryan Bater will be the new leader of the provincial Liberal party after a contest that was over before it ever really began.At the 5 p.m. close of nominations on Friday, Bater was the only candidate, meaning he will be acclaimed as leader at the party's November convention.
Congratulations, I think :-)

At least he has a sense of perspective:


"As far as being negative though, people should be reminded that both Brad Wall and Roy Romanow were acclaimed as leaders of their parties and went on to lead their parties to success," he said of the current Saskatchewan Party premier and former NDP premier.

HA HA HA HA.

I know Roy Romanow sir, and you are no Roy Romanow.

You're not even a Brad Wall.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

John McCain's Voting Record

Affirmative Action = 7%
Human Rights = 33%
Civil Liberties = 0% [That's right, 0%!]

Source: On the Issues

Rated 0% by the ACLU, indicating an anti-civil rights voting record.
McCain scores 0% by the ACLU on civil rights issues

Our ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.
Source: ACLU website 02n-ACLU on Dec 31, 2002

Rated 33% by the Human Rights Campaign, indicating a mixed record on gay rights.
McCain scores 33% by the HRC

The Human Rights Campaign represents a grassroots force of more than 700,000 members and supporters nationwide. As the largest national gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization, HRC envisions an America where GLBT people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.

Source: HRC website 06n-HRC on Dec 31, 2006

Rated 7% by the NAACP, indicating an anti-affirmative-action stance.
McCain scores 7% by the NAACP on affirmative action

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) has worked over the years to support and promote our country's civil rights agenda. Since its founding in 1909, the NAACP has worked tirelessly to end racial discrimination while also ensuring the political, social, and economic equality of all people.

Source: NAACP website 06n-NAACP on Dec 31, 2006

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

John McCain is a technological troglodyte, and proud of it

A good piece from Salon on why understanding technology is important for political leaders.


John McCain spends a lot of time talking about Iraq. He also likes talking about terrorism. But one issue he rarely touches upon is technology. In fact, under the "Issues" section of his campaign Web site, technology isn't even an option.
...

"I'm an illiterate who has to rely on my wife for all of the assistance that I can get," McCain said in an interview with Yahoo/Politico earlier this year.
...

with people wondering if his lack of technology skills is simply part of the "generational gap" between him and younger voters.
...

The United States currently sticks out globally for having no national broadband policy -- a plan to give every American access to affordable high-speed Internet connections. Roughly half of the country's households still lack broadband connections, and the United States continues to fall behind.
...

Science and technology certainly haven't been priorities under the Bush administration. A 2005 report by the National Academy of Sciences concluded, "The scientific and technical building blocks of our economic leadership are eroding at a time when many other nations are gathering strength."
...

McCain has a history of opposing increased Internet access for schools and libraries, backing large mergers to benefit the telecom industry and supporting a virtual system of haves and have-nots.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Barack is BACK!

This is the kind of smackdown the Republicans sorely need. And the Left needs to shut-up about how this guy can't handle the smears.



Saturday, August 02, 2008

Friday, August 01, 2008

When will the VP Spots be announced?

As there seems to be never ending speculation about who will win the so-called "veepstakes" on both sides., I thought it would be a good time to point out that we are still weeks away from knowing the answer to this question.

Tradition is that the party that currently controls the White House to hold its convention after the other party (why? who knows.) So the order this year will be Democrats, then Republicans.

However, the Democrats have to worry about the Summer Olympics so they pushed their convention to August 25th-28th, and the Republicans (going second) will hold the latest convention in recent history on September 1-4.

How soon before the conventions will the respective VP choices be announced? Listed below are the dates the nominee announced the selection of his running mate and corresponding dates of the convention…

  • 2004- John Kerry/John Edwards- Announced July 6th (Democratic Convention: July 26th-July 29th)
  • 2000- George W. Bush/Dick Cheney- Announced July 25th (Republican Convention: July 31st-August 3rd)
  • 2000- Al Gore/Joe Lieberman- Announced August 8th (Democratic Convention: August 14th-August 17th)
  • 1996- Bob Dole/Jack Kemp- Announced August 11th (Republican Convention: Aug 12th-15th)
  • 1992- Bill Clinton/Al Gore- Announced July 10th (Democratic Convention: July 13th-16th)
  • 1988- Michael Dukakis/Lloyd Bentsen- Announced July 13th (Democratic Convention: July 18th-21st)

So almost every running mate has been announced days before the party’s national convention. So the Democratic choice will probably be announced on or around August 21st (To get a full news cylce in before the convention) and the Republicans will announce on or around August 28th (same reason)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Saharan Sun Enough To Power Europe

The creation of solar farms in the Sahara desert could produce enough energy to meet all of Europe’s energy needs. Power could be generated either through photovoltaic cells or by using the sun’s heat to boil water and power turbines.

Scientists at the ESOF 2008 are also proposing a ’supergrid’ that could transmit electricity along high voltage direct current cables and potentially allow countries to export their wind energy during periods of surplus, as well as import energy from other sources. The grid proposal, with its ability to transmit power from different sources, eliminates the criticism of the instability of renewable energy. If there is no wind or sun in Europe, there certainly will be in the Sahara and the grid could potentially be able to transmit that energy to where it is needed.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

TILMA back on the table in Saskatchewan

So Saskatchewan has become a member of the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region, or PNWER. Which has among its other plans, the expansion of TILMA.


Boyd added that the government could take look at TILMA again in the future, if Alberta and B.C. showed there was room for movement in the agreement.

"But at this point in time our relationship is with PNWER here and we're very excited about that," Boyd said.


Let the election-promise breaking begin!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

More Lingenfelter speculation

So there is more speculation about a return of Dwain Lingenfelter as the next leader of the Saskatchewan NDP. Now the newspapers are in on the act.

I found this comment particularly interesting:


at a time when Calvert can count his remaining months as party leader on his fingers

Really, with the latest poll results? I'm not sure this is the case.

That being said, yes there is talk all over the party about who the next leader is going to be. And yes, there are a group of people pushing for Link. Let me quote from my previous comments


Pros: Ability to raise a lot of money, supposedly a pretty good network still for not having lived in the province for years, possible appeal to the business community, name recognition.

Cons: First elected in the 70's (Doesn't exactly reek of renewal). Perceived as "right-wing" in the party and therefore might have trouble winning, has been out-of-province for over a decade.

Analysis: Dwain would no doubt be a strong contender if he ran. He might even have a shot at winning. That being said, other than a couple of vocal MLA's and some back room hacks from the early 90's, who is talking about this guy? I haven't met any rank and file party members who support him. I am told the support it there, but I haven't seen it in person.

And in the comments I elaborated:

And as for the "Duane Train" I would love to know which MLA's are on it. I can guess at a couple, such as Kevin Yates and maybe Ron Harper and Kim Trew, but of the big boys and girls? Higgins, Atkinson, Quenell, McCall, Taylor, Belanger, or any of the new three? [I would be surprised]
...
Again, what does a guy who was elected 30 years ago bring in terms of renewal? Nothing.

What is his vision? How will he deal with the environment, or technology, just to name two issues that have changed dramatically in the 8 years since he was last an MLA?
...
In my opinion there is a generational shift happening in politics right now. Brad Wall is actually a part of that as one of his strengths is his relative youth.

This is similar to some of the points in the news story:

Ensconced for the past eight years in his role as vice-president, government relations, for Calgary-based Nexen Inc., why Lingenfelter would give up the perks of an interesting and well-paying job with global travel to rebuild a party on the decline is a big question.

Moreover, working for an Alberta-based private oil company isn't exactly the base from which to relaunch his former 20-year career as an elected Saskatchewan New Democrat.

...

Certainly, his support for Jim Dinning in the Alberta Conservative leadership race last year and his lobbying for nuclear power in Saskatchewan (something that didn't exactly endear him to his successor as deputy premier, Clay Serby, and others in the hierarchy of Lorne Calvert's NDP government) didn't seem especially helpful.

...

They also say that he wouldn't be afraid to take on issues that the Saskatchewan NDP hasn't been addressing, like the air pollution from the Alberta oilsands being dumped on Saskatchewan or even Boyd's suggestion that the province can't touch oil royalty rates for 12 or 16 years.


The way I see it, Link has three big problems. One is that he is viewed as on the "right" of the party, which makes it a bit difficult to win the support of a left-wing social-democratic party for leader. Particularly given that the party's membership is down to the core base, the true believers right now.

Now this could be overcome two ways, either run on a left-wing platform (which might be difficult) or sell a lot of memberships to people to come on to support him. This second one might work to win the race, but it also might fracture the party. I know of at least three high-profile members of the party (not MLA's but elected to serve in some capacity) who would quit the party if Link was leader. I know of a few other left-wing rank-and-file types who would "go green" or otherwise leave if Link was leader. It is hard to know how widespread this effect is, but it might prove to be a problem. (Personaly, I have a great deal of sympathy for this position, as I have a feeling it might apply to me as well ;-)

The second biggest stumbling block (and it is somewhat related to the first) is that Link has a severe credibility problem on the Green Issue. The environment is becoming more and more of a core issue for new Democrats (particularly the younger ones) and a "Brad Wall Lite" pro-nuclear, pro oil company leader is definitely NOt wanted by a pretty large section of the party. Again, this be overcome with the same soulutions as mentioned earlier, with the same problems.

The third issue is the "generation change" issue. Again, I am note sure what a politician who was first elected before some of the current MLAs were born brings to the table in terms of renewal. I have heard that Louise Simard was approaching people to dicuss her possible run and although she recived a decent reception, the number one objection she found was "it's time for a generational change." If that applied to her, then it applies to Link in spades.

In other words, if Link wants to be taken seriously and not risk splitting the party for his own gains (by just signing up instant members, who will disappear right after the leadership race) then he needs to do a couple of things:

1) Articulate a clear vision on the environment that is not "Brad Wall" light

2) Showcase some other left-wing social plans

3) Develop a leadership team that includes a number of people under the age of 30. Have a solid plan for attracting and retaining some youth to the party.

If those conditions were met then Link just might win this whole thing and have an intact party at the end to boot. Without at least some of those conditions, well, there is going to be a problem of him, either before or after the vote.

Monday, July 14, 2008

New Poll: Saskatchewan NDP in Statisital Tie with Right-Wing Sask Party

According to the latest poll from Environics:


Gains for the NDP this quarter put the party in a virtual tie with the recently elected Saskatchewan Party, while support for the Liberals holds steady.

Five months into its mandate, the Saskatchewan Party (SP) government is finding itself being challenged by its closest rival, the NDP. The SP now has 46 percent of decided voter support, essentially unchanged from December 2007 and on par with the party’s share of the popular vote in the November 2007 election.

The NDP has gained ground this quarter and now rivals the SP, within the margin of error for the survey. The NDP now has the support of 41 percent of decided voters, up eight points from December 2007 and on par with its share of the popular vote.


I thought that the Sask Party would be down, but I had no idea that the NDP would be up so much. Perhaps all this talk of a leadership race is premature!

(Yes, Yes, +/- 8% but that can work both ways, technically, the NDP could actually be ahead!)

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

And God said...



Thursday, June 26, 2008

Saskatchewan NDP Leadership Anaysis

So talk of leadership is once again in the air in Saskatchewan. The liberals are desperate:


With $10,000 in the bank and a Yamaha Road Star motorcycle to get around, Ryan Bater has launched a no-frills campaign to lead the Saskatchewan Liberal party.Bater, the 30-year-old general manager of the Battlefords Regional Economic Development Authority, is the first to declare his candidacy, two months before the deadline.

And there is the inevitable speculation about the NDP side:

That means most of the leadership speculation is now circulating around young, current NDP caucus members including Warren McCall, Cam Broten and even Deb Higgins, though some NDP insiders say selecting a younger, lower-profile leader is pretty much an admission the party can't win in 2011.
Actually Mr. Mandryk, keeping Calvert would be the admission that we can't win, not moving on to someone new - that shows the NDP thinks there IS a chance. Mind you, the view from up Mandryk's ass (where his head is) is by definition somewhat stunted.

So here is a run-down of the all the rumors of leadership candidates that are floating around and the pros and cons of each. There is (and never has been) a perfect candidate and all the potential people have both pros and cons.


Dwain Lingenfelter

Pros: Ability to raise a lot of money, supposedly a pretty good network still for not having lived in the province for years, possible appeal to the business community, name recognition.

Cons: First elected in the 70's (Doesn't exactly reek of renewal). Perceived as "right-wing" in the party and therefore might have trouble winning, has been out-of-province for over a decade.

Analysis: Dwain would no doubt be a strong contender if he ran. He might even have a shot at winning. That being said, other than a couple of vocal MLA's and some back room hacks from the early 90's, who is talking about this guy? I haven't met any rank and file party members who support him. I am told the support it there, but I haven't seen it in person.


Louise Simard

Pros: Woman, Intellectual, name recognition.

Cons: Shut down 52 rural hospitals, has been out-of-province for over a decade. First elected in 1991.

Analysis: I have never met Ms. Simard, so it is difficult for me to comment, but I know a number of people in the party who speak pretty highly of her. I am told she approaching people about a possible Leadership bid but has not made up her mind to run yet.


Nettie Wiebe

Pros: Woman, Intellectual, name recognition, Placed third last time, viewed as on the "left".

Cons: Never been elected even after running 3 times (Federally), has never even ran provincially, viewed as on the "left"

Analysis: Nettie has a strong following and, as she showed last time, would make a credible run. I think her star has sunk a little since then and there is no indication that she would run again as from all accounts she is focused on federal politics now.


Maynard Sonntag

Pros: Name recognition, ran last time, rural candidate.

Cons: Did not win his seat int he last election, did not do well last time.

Analysis: I have head from a couple of people that Maynard is definitely in the race, and have heard from others that he is just thinking about it. My guess would be that he will run, but I am doubtful that he can win.


Warren McCall

Pros: Young, viewed as on the "left", strong party background

Cons: Not well known outside Regina, not the strongest public speaker (but this could be overcome), viewed as on the "left"

Analysis: Warren is probably the strongest "young" contender as a sitting member of caucus for more than 7 months. His strong party background is a plus as well. That being said, I would be fairly surprised if he ran this time around.


Deb Higgins

Pros: Woman, ties to organized labour, Good performer in the House, from outside Regina/Saskatoon, first elected in 1999 (to replace Calvert, interestingly enough)

Cons: Ties to organized labour

Analysis: Deb is a strong contender and if she can use her ties to labour to sign up members that would be a powerful advantage. She is liked by most members of the party and is a good performer in the House. She also has executive experience in a few different Cabinet posts. I think Deb is one of the front-runners out of the current caucus if she decides to run.


Cam Broten


Pros: Young

Cons: Young

Analysis: Cam is by all accounts one of the rising stars of the NDP, but he has only been an MLA for 7 months. He may run to get his name out there for next time, but I would be surprised if he could win it. Keep a close eye on him for next time, however.


Pat Atkinson


Pros: Woman, well-liked by a large group in the party

Cons: First elected in 86, not well liked by a large group in the party.

Anaysis: Pat is a polarizing figure in the NDP, you either really like her or you really don't like her, there is no real middle ground. I will be surprised if she doesn't run, but I would also be surprised if she won.


Frank Quennell


Pros: Intelligent and Funny (in a sarcastic way), perceived as one of the better cabinet ministers, first elected in 2003

Cons: Lack of Charisma

Analysis: If Frank ran, he would have to try to persuade people that he could fill the "Allen Blakeney" shoes. Blakeny was very smart and had little personal charisma. That being said, Blakeney was a great premier.....


Eric Cline


Pros: Fantastic House performer, great cabinet minister, very well-spoken and hard worker.

Cons: Perceived as on the "right" of the party. Would take a hit for having sat out the 07 election.

Anaysis: Eric would also be a strong contender if he ran, but by all accounts he is not interested.


Andrew Tompson


Pros: Decent house performance, good cabinet minister by all accounts.

Cons: Disliked by many in the party. Doesn't live in the province, would take a hit for having sat out the 07 election.

Analysis: I will be very surprised if he ran.


Yens Peterson


Pros: Young, Hard Worker, President of the Party

Cons: Didn't win his seat in the last election, not well-known.

Analysis: Yens has been impressing party members all over the province by all accounts as one of the hardest working presidents in years. I have no idea if he would consider running for Leader but he might have a chance at attracting the establishment vote. His ability to sign up new members might be limited.


Ralph Goodale


Pros: Name recognition, lot of support from New Democrats federaly.

Cons: He is a Liberal MP, enough said.

Analysis: I would be kind of surprised if Ralph jumped ship (I think he has his eye on the Federal Leadership next time around) but I heard his name mentioned by a number of people in Regina so I am including him on my list.


Larry Hubich


Pros: Name recognition, support of the labour movement.

Cons: TOO tied to labour, no electoral experience.

Analysis: I have heard from a reliable source that Hubich is feeling out some people as to his chances should he run. I doubt he will, particularly if there are other acceptable labour candidates (such as Higgins)

EDIT: Mr. Hubich himself tells me I am wrong, I apologize and withdraw my remarks.


Pat Fiacco


Pros: Popular Mayor, name recognition.

Cons: Viewed as "far right" by many in the party, not a member (that I know of), and I don't know what his popularity outside of Regina is.

Analysis: It is not as if the NDP needs to make a breakthrough in Regina or anything, so I am not sure what the appeal of Fiacco is. Nevertheless, I have heard his name tossed around by a number of very senior party officials so I can only assume there is something there. I don't know if he is interested and I doubt very much he could win the race, but an interesting name anyway.


Others

I am also hearing rumours about some doctor in Saskatoon who's name escapes me at the moment. I have heard from the Riversdale executive up there that there is a doctor (I belive involved with the Station 20 group) that is considering running to replace Calvert both in Riversdale and possibly as leader, but I have scant information and can't even remember the name I was told.

I doubt that either Scott Banda or Joanne Crowford (who ran last time) would be interested again and I don't know if Buckley Belanger would make another run either (knowing he probably wouldn't win but again doing it for good reasons). There are also the two other newer MLA's, Trent Wotherspoon and Darcy furber and I wouldn't be surprised if at least one of them threw their hat in the ring just for name-recognition purposes.

I would also be that there is someone who will run who is not on this list (but I don't know who)

I don't know how many of these people (if any) will end up running. But I am sure of a couple of things, that there will be 4 or 5 strong candidates, and that we won't have to look around in desperation like the provincial Liberals :-)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Green Party suports dihydrogen monoxide ban.

Yep. dihydrogen monoxide is water!


"The Greens' support for a ban on dihydrogen monoxide shows just how scientifically illiterate the party is. They would ban anything if it has a slightly scientific name, regardless of the fact that all life would cease without water," Dr Smith said.

The email on dihydrogen monoxide points out it is a colourless, odourless, tasteless chemical used in all sorts of dangerous industries and that in gaseous form it causes thousands of burns; in liquid form millions of deaths from overdose (drowning), and in its solid state causes tissue damage.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

ABC News Says Obama wins Democratic Race

A.P. Count Clinches Obama Nomination

Barack Obama has effectively clinched the Democratic presidential nomination, based on an Associated Press tally of convention delegates.

The tally put Obama over the top Tuesday, ahead of the results from the day's final primaries in Montana and South Dakota. The Illinois senator becomes the first black candidate ever to lead his party into a fall campaign for the White House.

Obama outlasted former first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton in a historic contest and
now faces Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona for the presidency.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Sask Party MLA calls NDP MLA "Dumb Bitch" in the House

Right-wing Saskatchewan Party MLA Mike Chisholm was speaking in the House this week and he made an pretty derogatory remark to one of the Female NDP MLA's.

I quote from Hansard:


Mr. Chisholm: — Mr. Chair, those last comments were completely inappropriate for this committee, and I understand they should be withdrawn . . . [inaudible interjection] . . . You're calling somebody lazy and you think that's okay? Maybe we have to look at the Hansard on that one too, Deb, dumb bitch.
The "Deb" he is referring to is Deb Higgins, the NDP MLA from Moose Jaw.

Check out the handy YouTube clip:



Now, I don't want to make too big a deal about this, both sides of the House cross the line from time-to-time, but this language is fairly unacceptable. I have no doubt that a apology was issued but still, I think this speaks to the Sask Party's bigger issue - their attitude towards women.

Update: Not only was there an apology but Chisholm has resigned from his position as a Legislative Secretary:


Michael Chisholm, a Saskatchewan Party MLA for Cut Knife-Turtleford, has resigned as a legislative secretary after calling the NDP's Deb Higgins "a dumb bitch."

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Sask Liberals lean to the Right

Or so says the headline in this leader-post story.


The Saskatchewan Liberal Party has begun a period of introspection after party candidates were shut out for a second consecutive provincial election last November. And, suggestions emerged Saturday the party could be nudging toward more right-wing ideals.

That's right, return to the glory days of Thatcher, nothing like 40-year-old discredited ideas.

Of course, that would be a step up for the Liberals in Saskatchewan. They are the only group I know that with one elected official (federally or provincially) out of 74 and having gone zero for 4 in the last 4 provincial by-elections and election, that can make a virtue of their looserdom:

"We have one of those unique windows in the life of a political party where you don't have the baggage of the past and you really have a clean slate." - Ryan Androsoff

Good job Prairie fire, good job. :-)

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Minister of Labour Rob Norris

Wow! This is harsh even by Mr. Mandryk's standards:


If it truly was the New Democrats' goal to portray Norris as pompous and idiotic in this committee, their greatest ally in this effort has been Norris himself.

Deliberately adopting a speaking style reminiscent of William Shatner on the bridge of the USS Enterprise, Norris has blithered on about Plato, Aristotle and dead trees casting a shadow on the province. No metaphor has gone untortured.

But while Norris's petulance in committee has served no purpose other than to annoy, insult and demean, it may be unfair to single him out


So to summarize, Norris is pompous, idiotic, blithering, annoying, insulting and demeaning.

Sounds about right

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Saskatchewan Green-Liberal Merger?

You know you are not doing so well as a political party when the greens try to buy you out.

The Greens!


What was far most interesting was that the Greens used the occasion to officially serve notice they'd like to see a formal merger with the Liberal Party of Saskatchewan.

[snip]

Interim Liberal president Frank Proto was quick to note in an interview Tuesday that this isn't the first time he's heard such overtures since the November election.
Needless to say, this isn't getting a super warm reception from John Murney. I would link to other Saskatchewan Liberal Blog reactions, but I don't know any.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

On Blogs and Lawsuits


"The greatest threat to freedom is the absence of criticism."
Wole SOYINKA
Nigerian playwright, poet, novelist, and political activist (1934-)

So my blogging associate Lance has shut down the SaskBlogs aggregator, a service that benefited all of the Saskatchewan bloggers. I understand his reasons and I accept that he felt he had to do what he did but it really too bad.

This all stems from a lawsuit that has been launched against Small Dead Animals. Now my readers will know that I have gone of the way, on many, many occasions on this blog to try to discredit and attack Kate and her blog (and Lance has come in for his fair share of criticism as well)

But this is an attack on free speech. It is easy to defend free speech when it is something that you like, it takes some guts to defend the speech that you hate.

So let it be said, at least here, (even if that is meaningless), Kate, Lance and all others should have the right to say whatever they want on their blogs without threat of lawsuit or any other legal interference from the state or the public.

Kate, Lance, I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend your right to say it. For what it is worth (and I know it is not worth much) you have my support in this matter.

gpm

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Saskatchewan Fillibuster

Leader Post


By early evening Monday, NDP MLA Kevin Yates had spoken for three hours on the motion and was still going strong

What the hell is going on in Saskatchewan these days! First the tape and now the legislature is being ground to a halt with a fillibuster.

The first session for the Saskatchewan Party is looking a bit disastrous.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Does 17-year old dirt matter?

I find it interesting that the only defense for the Brad Wall/Tom Lukiwski thing is "but, but but...it was 17-years ago, who cares? Move on."

Except the Sask Party are the masters of dredging up 17-year-old dirt:


In 1992, then NDP caucus employee Ann Lord (Ann Davey) wrote a letter to NDP caucus chair MLA Glenn Hagel and NDP Caucus Chief of Staff Jim Fodey detailing how she had defrauded the caucus office by inflating cheques payable to her.
Where were all the people who are defending Tom and Brad today with the 17-years-ago defense back then?

Oh that's right, they were screaming for blood.

Unless you can point to comments you made last year about the NDP 16-years-ago-scandal condemning the Sask Party for dredging up the past: then shut the hell up about 17-years-ago today.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Full 24-Minute Saskatchewan Scandal Video

The Highlights (With Video time in front)

2:56 Tom Lukiwski's Homophobic Comments

[Tom Lukiwksi is the Member of Parliament for Regina Lumsden Lake Center]

TOM LUKIWSKI: Well, as we say in tour, I may be old, but I’m fucking A, eh.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And who is this A person?

TOM LUKIWSKI: Well, let me put it to you this way. There’s A’s and there’s B’s. The A’s are guys like me, the B’s are homosexual faggots with dirt on their fingernails that transmit diseases.

(INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, quit talking about Jeff like that.

TOM LUKIWSKI: Well, John Bergen and I had a little discussion and I’d like to tell you that it’s going to be out in our campaign literature real soon, watch for it (INAUDIBLE).


5:20 Letter Bomb (With a Sexual Innuendo Interlude)

[Kathy Young is the Director of Communications for the Saskatchewan Party Government
She is also involved important messages involving labour legislation and other labour issues being debated in the Saskatchewan Legislature right now]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What are you writing, Kim?

KIM: I’m writing –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: F-words.

KIM: Oops, I said, Tom, I tried to think of something witty, but what the fuck, happy birthday.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Very blurry handwriting.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our friends and union leaders.

KATHY YOUNG: George Rosseneau, Barb Byers are big friends of mine personally.

[snip]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let’s see here. What have we got going on on this screen?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You’re talking about –

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, it’s top secret.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That’s right. We’re talking about friends.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We’d show you, but then we’d have to kill you.

KATHY YOUNG: We’re writing this union speech to the red union leaders, George Rosseneau. We have threatened his life two times, and what else?

KATHY YOUNG: Oh, we sent a bomb to Barb Byers --

[Barb Byers is the Executive Vice-President of the Canadian Labour Congress, having been (at the time of the video) at the helm of the SGEU through the turbulent years of the scandal-ridden Conservative government of Grant Devine]

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We --

KATHY YOUNG: Byers, a letter bomb to Barb.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To Byers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To Byers.


7:20 Some Astute Political Analysis


[The results of the 1991 Saskatchewan election? The tories lost almost three-quarters of the seats they had held in the legislature and a significant share of the popular vote. Final Seat Count? 10]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We’re going to win 42 seats.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don’t think we’re going to win – how many did you say?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Forty-two.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don’t think we’re going to win 42 at all.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you think? (INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How many do you think we will win?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don’t know.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, take your best shot.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don’t know very much about politics. How much –

(LAUGHER)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How’d you get your job? Who do you know?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I’m going right now to visit him.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yeah. I know a lot, but not a lot of – not a lot of about that.


8:00 First Lynda Comment

[Lynda Haverstock was is the former leader of the Saskatchewan Liberal Party and was the Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan from 2000 until 2006.]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I predict that Grant Devine will smash the living dog shit out of that spineless political playboy and kick the balls right off of that hard-headed slut Lynda.


8:40 Second Lynda Comment

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What about Lynda’s balls?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It’s going to be tight. I don’t think Lynda has balls.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, big ones, big chubby suckers like this.


11:00 Tom Again

TOM LUKIWSKI: We want to tell you exactly what we think from the tour
standpoint. We think the tour is going fucking A.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Fucking A.

TOM LUKIWSKI: And we think the debate’s going to go fucking A.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Fucking A.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And predictions for the outcome of the election?

TOM LUKIWSKI: Well, we think the Tories are going to do fucking A.

OTHERS: Fucking A.

TOM LUKIWSKI: We’re kind of stuck on that, you know.

[You are sure "stuck" now Tom.]


11:50 John Scraba makes an Appearance

[John Scraba is the architect of the tory fraud scandal in Saskatchewan. In what is easily the biggest political scandal in Saskatchewan's history, no fewer than 12 members of Devine's government were charged in relation to a scheme that defrauded taxpayers of more than $837,000.]

JOHN SCRABA: You’re tipped sideways there, that’s okay.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, well, I’ll just get it that way then.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no, you’re in a proper frame here. I got it right. Here we go.
All right. Now, do you have comments on the debate, sir?

JOHN SCRABA: Certainly. We haven’t seen it yet.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, well, what do you predict?

JOHN SCRABA: Oh, predict an overwhelming victory and defeat for the other
socialist hordes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And what do you predict on the outcome of the election?

JOHN SCRABA: And urinate on their remains while we’re at it.


13:20 Third Lynda Comment

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, you know, all you got to do is let Lynda talk long enough
and she makes a fucking idiot out of herself, that’s all I have to say.


13:36 Joan Berston Making very odd comments

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Say something profound.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It’s either black or white. It’s either – just a minute. Excuse me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, did he win this bitch?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Big time.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Black or white. You have to do your eyes like this.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, oh, oh,

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And you have to have big lips and (inaudible).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And, Ms. --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Black or white.


15:10 Former Senator Berston makes an appearance

[Eric Brentson was the Tory Leader of the Opposition from 1979 to 1982 and was Deputy Premier in the Devine government. In 1999, Bernston was convicted of illegally diverting government allowances for polling purposes between 1987 and 1991 when he was Saskatchewan's deputy premier. He was sentenced to one year in prison.]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator Berntson, do you have a reaction tonight?

ERIC BERNSTON: Well, number one, I’m not Senator Berntson. I’m an anonymous guy that –

(LAUGHER)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He’s with the government and he’s here to help.

ERIC BERNSTON: that doesn’t know anything about any of this stuff, so all I’ll say is fucking A.

(LAUGHTER)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So don’t quote me on it.

ERIC BERNSTON: No, don’t quote me, yeah.

(INAUDIBLE)


16:00 Regan Rap

[Good Stuff]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I have.

BRAD WALL: “Well, I’m the big gipper, don’t mess with me. I’m the baddest rapper this side of DC with my best girl Nancy as my spouse,rappin’ to you from that big white house. B-b-b-b Bonzo, b-b-b-b Bonzo.” That’s the white house rap.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cool.


16:40 Brad Becomes the Camera Man

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The zoom should be right on there.

BRAD WALL: It should be on the trigger somewhere. Push.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, here it is, right here. Your zoom is right here, Brad --

BRAD WALL: Oh, yeah.


19:00 Ken Azzopardi And the 4th Linda Comment

[Ken Assopardi is the Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Taxpayer's Federation]

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, they’re busy in here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ken Azzopardi and his – and his future of Saskatchewan.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is what Ken’s – what does he think about Lynda? This is Ken. He (INAUDIBLE) big time stuff, big time stuff.

[Holds up Lingerie catalog with women's read ends]


20:50 Ken doing up his pants and Reds rant

KEN AZZOPARDI: I’m doing up my –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He’s doing up –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There it is –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now the light’s on.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The light is on.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It’s my first opportunity to look into this campaign. Fuck you all. We won tonight.

KEN AZZOPARDI: Well, you know, I was just talking to a guy and there’s four reds there at his house. He’s ours. He has four reds at his house and the reds think the reds – the City of Regina reds who said Lynda won --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, give me –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- on --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On abortion, abortion.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, they say that because they want them to say it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wait a minute, no, no, no.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Abortion.

KEN AZZOPARDI: Lynda won and Romanow was the big loser. For a red that’s a major fucking victory.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A major fucking victory.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lynda made –

JOAN BERNTSON: She made one statement on abortion, you know. She made one statement on abortion earlier, but I can’t remember what it was, but it was everyone in Saskatchewan cares about the lives --


21:90 Brad Stops being Camera Man, just in time to give us: Brad's Ukranian impression

KATHY YOUNG: The Premier versus Haverstick (sic) and –

BRAD WALL: Let me tell you something. I watched that in – I watched that in Preeceville. I watched that debate and I’ll tell you this, I never – I never seen Grant Devine – I – I will never – I never voted for Grant Devine.

KATHY YOUNG: Why not?

BRAD WALL: I never voted for him, but I –

KATHY YOUNG: Why not?

BRAD WALL: Before. I see him on TV tonight after Helen fixed me dinner and I tell you I like Grant Devine. Roy Romanow got his head up his ass . I don’t even know how he walks upright with his head so far up his ass and I’ll you --

KATHY YOUNG: Mr. (INAUDIBLE), how do you think he walks --

BRAD WALL: I’m not – I’m not kidding. So the bottom line is this –

UNIDENTIFIED MAILE: Why you talking like that?

BRAD WALL: I’m voting – I’m going to vote. I’m voting and the guy that I will vote for – who I’m voting for – marking my ballot to vote is Grant Devine.

KATHY YOUNG: And you –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (INAUDIBLE) I thought it was good. Oh, Curtis

Saskatchewan MP makes Homophobic Comments

Tom Lukiwski:

"Well, let me put it to you this way. There’s A’s and there’s B’s. The A’s are guys like me, the B’s are homosexual faggots with dirt on their fingernails that transmit diseases."


hat tip blogging a dead horse

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Small Dead Animals Denouced by Sask Premier

Take a look at this link Where KKKate talks about the Station 20 issue in Saskatoon:


Dear Saskatoon Inner City;

If those of you in the "left behind during an economic boom community" want a grocery store in your neighborhood, the following economic stimuli are guaranteed to produce one a lot more quickly than a government funded "free" dental clinic and housing project:

1. Put the cap back on your used needle and take it to a safe disposal site. Failing that, share it with your friends. It's a quicker solution to your problem, anyway.

2. Cross your legs.

3. Put down the spray can.

4. BINGO!

And no, I don't have any change. There's a McDonalds over on 22nd where the average kid working behind the counter is a 55 year old women. I doubt they're pushing you out of the job market.

On second thought, maybe they are.



This has been found to be offensive by none other than Brad Wall, the Premier of Saskatchewan:


Reporter: What do you say today about the small dead animal blog...?

Brad Wall: Those are intolerant and unacceptable remarks and I had known for some time in Opposition we had an endorsement on our website referencing myself and I think that's been removed, and if it hasn't it will be shortly.

Reporter: Why?

Brad Wall: Because those comments are just simply unacceptable, and I'm not sure what direct relationship there is between an endorsement and those comments except that that individual and the website, if those words are reflective of their view, I would like not to be on our caucus website.

Reporter: In the past, members of your caucus in Opposition have cited that website, have mentioned her, spoken approvingly I would say generally of her judging by the tone of it, will you ask them not to do things like that?

Brad Wall: Well, on certain issues, on that website and others, there's, you know, when it comes to economic cases to be made, issues, those have been agreed with by members of our caucus, by myself. This is beyond the pale in terms of what is acceptable, and so, the website's been changed as of right now, and I don't expect to hear anytime soon Saskatchewan Party members in the House referencing the site.

Reporter: Is this person involved in your party at all, does she help you and would she be welcome to do so?

Brad Wall: She's been pretty clear, although, well, I think she's been clear, I guess I'm not sure of this, but I don't think she's been or has any intention of being a member of the party. We would want to have members of the Saskatchewan Party who don't take such a view with respect to people who live in core neighborhoods in the province.
hat tip Sean