Monthly Archives: April 2012

The F-35 Boondoggle

I know we’ve been over this ground before, but remind me again… why does Canada even need this heinously expensive new class of fighter jet at all? What possible military threat are we defending ourselves from? Seriously. What is the point?

Aside from the absurdity of ploughing something like $30 billion into a high-tech gizmo that serves no useful purpose whatsoever (it’s worth noting that Lockheed Martin’s last iteration of this plane, the F-22 “stealth raptor” fighter, has never actually been deployed in combat), there is the matter of the Harper government having egregiously misled Canadians about the cost of the program during the last election and then repeatedly lying to parliament subsequent to that. For instance, according to Harper and his ministers last year, there was a contract in place that would prevent cost overruns, but now they claim there is no contract. So which is it?

Bob Rae has called on Harper to resign over the issue, but, of course, nobody seriously imagines that’s going to happen. I mean, we’re only talking about a complete lack of government oversight involving a measly $10 billion discrepancy in accounts… it’s certainly nothing anywhere nearly as serious as the “AdScam” fiasco where possibly $100 million of taxpayer money was at stake! In that case, it was entirely justified that every “conservative” worth his or her salt should howl with OUTRAGE! like a gut-shot dog every day for years and years and years…


Filed under HARPER Government of Canada

Olbermann: A $10 Million Chandelier

Appearing on Dave Letterman’s show last night, Keith Olbermann talked about being fired by Current TV the other week. “I screwed up really big on this,” he said. “It’s my fault that it didn’t succeed, in the sense that I didn’t think the whole thing through.”

“I didn’t say, ‘You know, if you buy a $10 million chandelier, you should have a house to put it in.’ Just walking around with a $10 million chandelier isn’t going to do anybody a lot of good.” Olbermann went on to quip, “And then it turned out we didn’t have a lot to put the house in… or a building permit.”

Hmmm. We should all be so lucky to get $50 million (the reported amount of Olbermann’s contract) for a thoughtless, ill-fated decision that quickly turned out to be a big screw up that eventually terminated in complete failure.


Filed under Liberals, Television

The Pursuit of Happiness

Thom Hartmann just couldn’t resist drawing some obvious conclusions the first World Happiness Report released earlier this week showing that the world’s happiest countries are all in northern Europe with Denmark, Finland, Norway and the Netherlands taking the top four spots. Canada came in a respectable fifth and the United States a distant eleventh place.

According to the report: “Happier countries tend to be richer countries. But more important for happiness than income are social factors like the strength of social support, the absence of corruption and the degree of personal freedom.

Over time as living standards have risen, happiness has increased in some countries, but not in others (like for example, the United States). On average, the world has become a little happier in the last 30 years (by 0.14 times the standard deviation of happiness around the world).”

I wonder if someone will remind Stephen Harper of his now infamous quote from 14 years ago when he was vice president of the National Citizens Coalition speaking to a Montreal meeting of the right-wing U.S. Council for National Policy where he lamented the fact that “Canada is a Northern European welfare state in the worst sense of the term, and very proud of it.”

Indeed we are – and maybe it seems, that’s not such a bad thing after all.


Filed under Liberals-Progressives, Political Ideology, US Politics

Liblogs – Minus One (Updated)

Hey, did you notice that Liblogs got a cool new make-over recently?

Almost a year after he went down in flames (sadly, along with most of the party) and then, almost exactly as the Conservative attack machine had predicted, immediately hightailed it back to a cozy academic sinecure at Harvard the University of Toronto’s Massey College, the operatives behind Liblogs finally got around to ditching the old banner featuring Michael Ignatieff. More than a little late getting around to that bothersome detail some might say, but hey, a good thing nonetheless. And more than that, the site now has a bunch of cool new features and lots of social media playfulness. Hooray!

One thing you WON’T find on the “new and improved” Liblogs site though is yours truly. Seems, I got kicked to the curb in their renovation. Imagine that! But not to worry… there is a close approximation in “Red Writing” whose Twitterish looking site apologetically states, “Sorry, no posts matched your criteria.”

Go figure.

Update: Reinstated! Thanks to Steve V. for the quick fix.


Filed under Liberals

“This Will Always Be So” (Or Not)

Some readers may recall a post from a little while back featuring Richard Dawkins appearing on MSNBC’s weekend “Up” program where he floated the provocative idea of taking politicians to task for some of their kooky religious beliefs… Well, guess what? It seems that someone did precisely that the other day at one of Mitt Romney’s “town hall” events…

Asked if it’s a sin for a white man to marry and procreate with a black woman, needless to say, being the gutless douchebag he is, Romney reacted to the question as if he’d just been tossed a red hot BBQ charcoal. “No” was his emphatic response before quickly turning to the other side of the crowd for a more scripted inquiry.

But wait, how can that be?
Evidently, the God-inspired, yet indisputably racist proclamations of the Mormon religion’s “second prophet” (you know, following the grifter with the magic top hat) are currently null and void. That whole thing Brigham Young declared about “the penalty, under the law of God” as regards to whites conjugating with blacks being “death on the spot”… Well, not so much now, I guess.

I think we may well have a better insight into why Mitt Romney is, as one of his former rivals memorably said, such a “well-lubricated weathervane.” Seems Dawkins may have been onto something here after all when it comes to better understanding a political candidate’s mindset via their religious beliefs.


Filed under 2012 U.S. Election, Lunatics, Racism, Religion

Parliamentary Fight Club

Irrespective of the supposedly worthy fundraising cause involved, what an utterly bizarre and unseemly event this past weekend’s charity boxing match was. Hard to believe that we’ve actually sunk lower by a quantum measure of absurdity in comparison to our American friends – can you imagine two members of Congress showing off their “tats” and battling it out in the ring?

Poor Ezra Levant; it must really chapped the insufferable little toad’s backside that not only didn’t the Liberals’ pretentious “shiny pony” get flattened in the first round, but actually managed to withstand Senator Brazeau’s initial hammering and eventually best the odds-on favourite Conservative with a TKO in the third round.

As much as I’m completely appalled by the event, I have to admit to whimsically considering that more such brawls might perhaps be a worthwhile replacement for the shrill and mostly pointless haranguing of Question Period. Hmmm… I wonder if Pierre Polievre has tats?


Filed under Canadian Politics