Saturday, December 31, 2005
Speaking of the Liberal Party, Basham writes:
“The party's only hope is to cast itself as Mother Canada, protecting her vulnerable and insecure children huddled for warmth along the American border. Which makes one wonder what ever happened to Liberal Prime Minister Wilfrid Laurier's 1904 forecast that, `The 20th century shall be the century of Canada.’ Laurier must be turning over in his grave. A century later, his countrymen remain so culturally insecure and politically adolescent that they may once again fall prey to such crass politicking. Canadians need to grow up. And they need to do so quickly.”
Basham’s point is essentially that anti-Americanism actually undermines Canada’s own national self-interest.
“Canadians need to get over themselves. They need to accept the asymmetry of the U.S.-Canada relationship, one deeply beneficial to both countries. Rewarding their political leaders' anti-American prejudices is an immature response. A mature electorate, with the worldliness and self-confidence that Laurier foresaw, would appreciate that anti-Americanism is really anti-Canadian, for it hurts Canada most of all.”
It’s unlikely of course, Basham’s words will change many minds.
Anti-Americanism is the last accepted prejudice in this country.
Thursday, December 29, 2005
The recent outrage generated by a couple of Liberal blogs, see here and here, have rattled me a bit.
I mean, if even Liberals can’t live up to the ideals of Political Correctness what chance do the rest of us unenlightened non-Liberals have?
With that in mind, I have come up with a guide for bloggers to keep them out of trouble in these dangerous times.
Here it is:
1. Never use humour on your blog. Especially stay away from any kind of satire, as this could be construed as offensive to the PC police who have had their funny bones surgically removed.
2. Never make any comments about any person of a different gender, ethnic group, sexual orientation, religious background. Although please note that insulting Christians, WASPs, or conservatives is not only acceptable but actually encouraged.
3. Never call a woman “sexy” on your site as this could be interpreted as either misogynist or sexist. However, it is certainly permissible for female bloggers to call me “sexy” as this will only be interpreted as “charitable”.
4. Never use the defence of “free speech” to defend anything you post on your blog as this strategy is only useful when referring to Supreme Court sanctioned pornography.
5. Or to be really safe shut down your blog and spend your time watching the CBC to help with the necessary PC indoctrination process.
And to anybody out there who wants to report this blog to the authorities, rest assured I am in no way being satirical.
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Williams notes two examples: the attack on religion and the attack on smoking.
The attack on religion in the United States began in 1963 when the Supreme Court banned organized prayer in schools. Who knew at the time that this ruling would eventually lead to calls for the elimination of all Christian symbols or to the banning of Christmas carols from public schools?
The attack on smoking on the other hand, began with demands for no smoking sections on airplanes. That has led to no smoking bans in airports, restaurants, parks and to billion dollar legal suits against tobacco companies.
Here in Canada we will likely see the same thing with election gag laws. This law began as an attack on the right on non-political parties to participate in elections.
I dread to think where it could eventually lead.
Saturday, December 24, 2005
This movie has it all – great acting, fantastic special effects, cool battles and a wonderful message or two.
I heartily recommend it to everyone, everyone that is except Prime Minister Paul Martin.
That’s because there’s a scene in the movie where Santa Claus, instead of giving the children toys, gives them weapons with which they can more properly battle the forces of evil.
If Martin ever gets the idea that Saint Nick is illegally arming people he will probably ban Christmas.
Friday, December 23, 2005
Thursday, December 22, 2005
Now I’ve debated Aaron on this question so many times on radio, on TV and in print over the past five years that I just can’t bring myself to do it again.
In other words, I’m too lazy.
Fortunately, Bob Tarantino over at LetitBleed, did a magnificent job of demolishing of Aaron’s arguments.
Check it out.
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
But I don’t think it's such a good idea.
I mean let’s say Duceppe takes Harper up on the challenge; and let’s say, for the sake of argument, that Harper demolishes Duceppe.
The only upside for the Tories is they drain away nationalist support away from the Bloc.
But let’s face it, considering their lowly standing in the polls in La Belle province the Conservatives will never swing enough votes to win a seat.
What they could do, however, is weaken the Bloc enough to allow the Liberals to win a few more seats in Quebec – maybe enough seats to keep the Grits in power.
That’s why Harper should forget about Duceppe and forget about pandering to the Quebec nationalist element.
The election will be won or lost in Ontario.
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Earlier this year the National Citizens Coalition came up with the idea of Adscam golf balls after former Prime Minister Jean Chretien's disgraceful performance before the Gomery Inquiry.
And now here's what the Bloc is selling.
I guess imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
Now if we could only get them to imitate our desire for smaller government.
“For the time being at least,” says the article “the Conservative strategy of ignoring harsh personal attacks and refraining from making them in return while instead peppering the country with ideas, looks to be set in stone.”
In my view it’s a dubious strategy.
One of the reasons the Tories fell short in the last election was that they failed to effectively respond to Liberal attacks ads.
Politics is a blood sport, and sometimes you got to fight fire with fire. Otherwise you will get burned.
I pontificate further on this in a column I wrote for the Vancouver Sun last spring.
Monday, December 19, 2005
In a column appearing in the Newmarket Era Banner, Stronach is quoted as saying “easing some of the limits on third-party advertising may be worth considering”.
This is kind of a big deal since she is the first senior Liberal to even suggest the gag law is too restrictive.
Mind you she is no where near as opposed to gag laws as she was last year. That’s when she signed an NCC pledge which committed her to scrapping the gag law should she become Prime Minister.
But at least it’s a start.
Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper has also pledged to scrap the gag law.
Could this be the beginning of a bipartisan move to restore free speech to Canadians?
Friday, December 16, 2005
Thursday, December 15, 2005
I am talking about Section 329 of the Canada Elections Act, which bans the “premature transmission” of voting results on election night. That means it’s illegal for somebody to post election results from a region of the country where the polls are closed to a region where they are still open.
You can learn more about his law here and here.
Bryan challenged this law back in 2000 because he thought it was an infringement on his right to free speech.
What he did was post real time voting results from Atlantic Canada on his website in British Columbia.
The next day Elections Canada dispatched Speech Police to his home and seized his computer.
He was later charged.
But Paul fought back. With the support of the National Citizens Coalition, Paul challenged the law in court. In 2003 the BC Supreme Court overturned the law, but earlier this year the Court of Appeals reinstated it.
That means if any blogger in Eastern or Central Canada posts election results which can be accessed on the West Coast, you will be violating the law and could be charged.
Of course, such a law is not only undemocratic; it’s unenforceable. Look how long the ban on the Gomery testimony lasted.
Let’s hope the Supreme Court sees it that way.
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
“Last year, Svend Robinson’s lawyer, Clayton Ruby, explained that his client’s theft of a $21,500 ring was, in essence, a `cry for help’. Ruby’s arguments were successful and his client got off with a conditional discharge. Now Robinson is back, once again seeking a seat in the House of Commons. It’s our turn to cry for help.”
Couldn’t have said it better myself.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
He essentially boils it down to three main reasons:
1) the lack of conservative infrastructure such as foundations, think tanks, and publications;
2) the failure to organize and become part of a larger conservative coalition;
3) Charter-era politics.
Tuns makes the case that the same-sex marriage debate may help galvanize social conservatives to help offset points one and two, but the increasing supremacy of the courts makes it difficult to debate moral issues in the political arena.
It’s a thought-provoking piece.
Monday, December 12, 2005
Simply put, the Liberals think Canadians are idiots.
We are too stupid to take care of our kids, hence the need for a state day care program.
We are too stupid to know how to spend our money, hence the refusal to give us any meaningful tax cuts.
We are too stupid to hear different political viewpoints, hence the need for an election gag law.
How long will it be, I wonder, before the Liberals think we are too stupid to vote?
Friday, December 09, 2005
She demonstrated an amazing ability to avoid answering the question, meaning she is now truly a Liberal.
Joel Johannesen posts the clip on his blog.
Check it out.
I have an op-ed in today’s Globe and Mail taking Belinda Stronach to task on the election gag law issue.
Back in early 2004, when she was running for the Tory leadership, Stronach signed a pledge to scrap this horrible law which denies all Canadians the right to free election speech.
Did she really believe gag laws were wrong or did she sign it merely to help her win the leadership?
She has an obligation to her constituents to set the record straight, and I hope my article spurs her to do just that.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
The headline in the Toronto Star for instance says “PM vows `total’ handgun ban”.
But that’s not true.
Here’s what the text of the Star story says:
“Liberal sources say that the proposed ban, to be announced by Martin in Toronto, will be sweeping – only police and select security officers would be allowed to carry handguns.” (italics added)
It seems to me that a “total” ban on handguns would also include the police, security officers and heck even the army.
So when you come down to it, Martin is only offering a partial ban on handguns.
But why not a total ban? Why exempt the police? Why should they enjoy a special exemption denied to the rest of the citizenry? Aren’t all Canadians supposed to be equal before the law?
Of course, Martin’s supporters might say cops need to be armed in case they run into some pistol packing crook.
But doesn’t that argument undermine the whole premise of the handgun ban? I mean if a ban on handguns doesn’t make the police feel safe enough to patrol our streets unarmed, why are the rest of us supposed to feel safer?
By exempting the police Martin is essentially acknowledging that his gun ban won’t disarm criminals. It’s a policy that just won’t work.
And by that I mean it won’t work when it comes to stopping crime, but it might work when it comes to winning votes – which is all that matters to the Liberals.
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Leo-Paul Lauzon, an NDP candidate in Quebec, recently praised Cuban communist dictator Fidel Castro and says the Canadian government should nationalize Air Canada, CN Rail, and the oil and gas industry.
Is this what Jack Layton really has in store for Canada?
Now that’s scary, but I wonder if the media will think so.
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
To protest the federal election gag law, the National Citizens Coalition has put up an unusual billboard in downtown Toronto.
The billboard doesn’t have a catchy slogan, or an election message, or any words at all.
It simply features the stark image of a man with tape across his mouth.
Our billboard symbolizes our loss of free election speech. The gag law stifles free election speech. It undermines democracy. It prevents us from effectively participating in the election debate currently raging across the country.”
The election gag law, which was enacted in 2000, imposes severe restrictions on how much money non-politicians can spend on election advertising.
The NCC has battled gag laws in the courts until last year when the Supreme Court of Canada ruled them to be constitutional.
Under the gag law only politicians and political parties have the right to effectively and freely speak out during elections. Everybody else has to keep quiet. We think that’s wrong. We think everyone should be free to participate in the election process.
The gag law prevents important issues from being discussed and debated. Groups on all sides of the political spectrum will be silenced.
The only items on the election agenda will be those items the politicians want to discuss. That’s bad for democracy.
First of all you’ve got Jack “I will bring down the government to save public health care” Layton now saying private health care clinics are OK.
And yesterday the NDP unveiled their star candidate – Paul Summerville a former Bay Street economist who says the NDP doesn’t want to increase taxes.
Then you’ve got union boss Buzz Hargrove stiffing Layton and endorsing former corporate capitalist Paul Martin.
Is Layton going to endorse nuclear power instead of windmills? Is Martin going to make “Solidarity Forever” his campaign theme song? Is the Toronto Star going to endorse Stephen Harper?
All we do know is that we can expect a lot more tricks and treats before January 23.
Monday, December 05, 2005
Came up with three possible reasons:
Buzz is sending a message to the NDP brass that he doesn’t want to be taken for granted.
Buzz believes Prime Minister Paul Martin is a closet socialist.
Buzz wants to be ambassador to Denmark one day.
It remains to be seen, of course, if Hargrove’s endorsement will actually help the Liberal Party.
Unionized workers are notorious for ignoring the advice of union bosses when it comes to voting and other voters might actually get turned off by Hargrove’s seal of approval.
Mind you, at this stage of the game, the Liberals will likely take anybody’s help.
Friday, December 02, 2005
He is going to reduce medical waiting lists --- somehow.
This is pretty much the same as Paul Martin’s plan, which also promises to reduce waiting lists --- somehow.
Of course, neither man sees a role for the private sector in our socialist health care system.
And until they do see a role for the private sector, sick and dying Canadians will just have to get by --- somehow.
By taking an anti-GST stand the Tories are essentially forcing the Liberals to defend one of the most hated taxes in the country – a tax they themselves vowed to scrap back in 1993.
And the more, the Liberals defend the GST the more they will remind people of past broken promises.
Mind you, some economic eggheads say cutting the GST is bad fiscal policy.
Well, I’m no economist, but one thing I do know is that lower taxes are better than higher taxes.
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Isn’t that a comforting thought?
And we have a Quebec Judge, Justice James Brunton, to thank for this state of affairs.
Brunton yesterday removed all the restrictions imposed on Homolka last June when she was officially released from prison.
“The possibility that (Homolka) might reoffend one day cannot be completely eliminated,” he wrote in his ruling, “However . . . on balance of probabilities . . . this is unlikely to occur. She does not represent a real and imminent danger. . .”
Even though Homolka is a depraved, psychotic, cold-blooded child-killer, Brunton says she is no “real threat”.
Well if that’s the case, Brunton shouldn’t be afraid to walk the walk.
I propose he voluntarily take his little angel Karla into his home for the next year or so, just to show us how confident he is in his judgment.
What’s more, he should put Karla in charge of babysitting his kids. After all, on the “balance of probabilities” she won’t murder them.
Only when Brunton takes up my suggestion, will I buy his argument, otherwise I’d advise all Canadians to beware: a wolf has just been let loose among the sheep.
Wednesday, November 30, 2005
But maybe the presence of blogs will make this election more interesting, but then again maybe not.
Case in point is the official Liberal Party blog that former journalist and current Paul Martin speech-writer Scott Feschuk is writing.
Feschuk is a good writer and it’s clear he is trying to inject his Dave Barry-style humour into the election campaign.
It’s interesting. It’s different. And I don’t think it works.
Not that I am against laughing at election politics. God knows we need something to keep us smiling in the dark days ahead.
It’s just when Barry wrote about politics he skewered both Democrats and Republicans, gleefully pointing out absurdities on a non-partisan basis.
Liberal Party employee Feschuk, on the other hand, will poke fun at the Opposition Parties but kiss up to Martin.
That just isn’t funny.
But if it does work, maybe Conservative Party Stephen Harper should fight back and hire Jerry Seinfeld to write his blog: “Did you ever notice how corrupt the Liberals are . . .”
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
After surveying the last election results, after studying various trends and polls and after consulting with people wise in the way of politics, I have come to one inescapable conclusion --- the party that wins the next election will be the party that makes the fewest mistakes.
OK that sounds like a cop out, but hear me out.
Since actual issues --- things like health care, Kyoto, taxes --- won’t play much of a part in what promises to be a nasty campaign, everything else will be magnified.
Every gaffe, every stupid comment, every bad photo op will become disproportionately huge as the media, starved of anything else to talk about, will magnify any screw up under its unforgiving microscope.
Does this make for a good election?
But until our political parties start coming up with real visions, and with real ideas, that’s what we are stuck with.
Anybody else have a prediction?
Monday, November 28, 2005
That means starting tomorrow the country will be in election-mode and voters will be exposed to differing ideas, conflicting visions and alternative points of view.
Nah, I’m just kidding.
In reality, the only views Canadians will get exposed to are those put forward by the politicians.
That’s because the election gag law makes it a crime for non-politicians to effectively and freely express ideas through election advertising.
The National Citizens Coalition will be forced to essentially remain quiet for the next month or so.
Imagine what a hockey player would feel like if he was told he could play in the regular season, but would have to sit out the Stanley Cup playoffs. That’s what we feel like.
Elections are the most crucial time in any democracy, and here we are forced to sit on the sidelines and watch.
The real losers, however, are the voters. They are losing their right to free speech, because free speech means having the right to listen as well as to speak.
Instead of hearing a wide assortment of ideas from a wide assortment of citizens and groups, voters will only hear the political propaganda of the political parties.
That’s not democracy.
OK end of my rant – for now.
Friday, November 25, 2005
Brison accused the Tories of “slanderous mudslinging” and declared the Tories “have as their modus operandi the use of absolutely false accusations … that do nothing but tarnish the reputation of everybody in public life.”
This is the same Brison of course who was forced to publicly apologize to the National Citizens Coalition because he made some false accusations that tarnished the reputation of the NCC.
Memo to Scott: People who live in mud houses shouldn’t sling dirt.
Held in the Albany Club and hosted by former Premier Mike Harris, the event was a great conservative get-together, excepting Warren Kinsella who also showed up for some reason.
I had a chance to talk to bloggers Bob Tarantino, Greg Staples, Paul Tuns and Steve Janke which was great.
The highlight of the evening, however, occurred when Lord Black showed up, traveling media circus in tow.
It added a surreal touch to the evening, especially when the camera hordes nearly trampled a few of the guests.
All in all, though it was a fun event.
Let’s hope the next launch of this kind will be for a book called Rescuing the Liberals.
Thursday, November 24, 2005
Buckley, of course, is almost as well known for his erudite use of language as he is for his brilliant and trenchant defence of conservatism.
His greatest achievement was the creation of National Review magazine which in the dark days of the 1960s and 70s, was one of the few voices of reason.
Check out George Will’s excellent tribute.
Indeed, you got to wonder why the Globe headline writers seemed so shocked. Negative campaigning has been a Liberal trademark for the past 20 years.
And you can bet any Liberal attack campaign will include smears against the National Citizens Coalition because Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper used to be our president.
In the last election they even produced a massive report to expose the NCC’s “scary” agenda – you know things like fighting gag laws, opposing waste and promoting honest government.
Of course, thanks to the election gag law the NCC can’t fight back, making it all the easier for the Liberals to sic their attack dogs on us.
Mind you we welcome their hatred.
The day the likes of Paul Martin says nice things about us is the day we are not doing our job.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
And now that it’s winding down (at least for now) you might want to check out the chronology of the whole affair.
We have set up a special section on the NCC site that details this mini-epic.
Check it out.
And speaking of Brison, I did an interview yesterday with Charles Adler on this topic and he suggested an interesting theory.
Adler contends that Brison, who just jumped to the Liberal Party a few years ago, is trying to out-Liberal the Liberals in a sad effort to ingratiate himself with his Grit comrades.
Despite all his bravado and tough rhetoric, Brison is probably just an insecure politician out to score brownie points.
Of course, that doesn’t make his smear tactics any more palatable.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
First off he had to publicly apologize to the National Citizens Coalition for slandering us a few weeks ago – man that must have hurt.
Then he had to back off on his department’s ill-advised and discriminatory scheme to ban the hiring of white males in his department.
And now a long-time Liberal is demanding Brison apologize for rude comments he allegedly made to her in a public restaurant.
He is quickly becoming the Toronto Raptors of Parliament.
Monday, November 21, 2005
Public Works Minister Scott Brison has formally apologized to the National Citizens Coalition for trying to smear us on November 4th.
Readers of this blog will recall he offered a half-baked apology to us two weeks ago, but we rejected it and threatened legal action.
So today we got a better apology faxed to us. (Please note this letter is the only thing we are legally allowed to make public concerning his apology)
Of course, this apology does not make up for the fact that Brison smeared our organization on national television but at least we have put him and other politicians on
notice that the NCC will fight to defend its reputation.
And as a bonus we have also undermined the credibility of Brison, who appears to be the designated Liberal attack dog.
We plan to keep an eye on this guy, so he had better watch his step.
News reports say the Liberals want to enact a new gag law which would limit how much money citizens could contribute to the National Citizens Coalition.
This is on top of a law they have already enacted which effectively makes it impossible for the NCC to effectively speak out during elections.
Man they must be scared of us!
And for good reason – the NCC exposes their sordid, scandal ridden record.
Here’s a news release I just sent out:
NCC Condemns New Gag Law
(November 21, 2005) The National Citizens Coalition today denounced the Liberal government’s plans to rush a new gag law through the House of Commons on the eve of an expected federal election.
“The same government which enacted a gag law making it a crime for non-partisan groups to express political opinions during federal elections now wants to take away our right to raise funds during an election,” says NCC vice president Gerry Nicholls. “Not content with just shutting us up and they now want to shut us down.”
The Liberal government is pushing new rules that would place a limit on how much individuals can contribute to non-partisan organizations like the NCC.
“While fighting the original gag law we predicted this would happen,” says Nicholls. “First they limit how much you can speak; now they want to dictate how much money Canadians can contribute to private organizations. What’s next?”
Nicholls says this move reveals how desperate the scandal-ridden Liberal Party has become.
“Prime Minister Paul Martin knows the NCC is an effective voice in exposing the sordid record of his party,” says Nicholls. “So he is using the power of the state to strike back. It’s sad and it’s scary.”
The NCC fought a constitutional campaign against election gag laws for more than 20 years.
Friday, November 18, 2005
Check it out.
It might shed some light on this Black affair.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
What they told me does not bode will for Conservative Party.
To be blunt, the Conservative brand name just doesn’t register here.
Quebecois fed up with the Liberals will park their vote with the Bloc, even those who are not separatist.
In fact, the Bloc makes the perfect protest vote – Vote for them and you send the Liberals a message without ever having to worry about the Bloc Quebecois ever taking power.
On the other hand, I got the sense that even here in Quebec – home of the “Quebec Model” – people are getting fed up with big government, militant unions and high taxes.
The Tories need to connect the dots.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Ever wonder what’s wrong with the Right in Canada?
Left-wing views dominate our media, our courts and our schools; federal conservative parties are on a twelve year losing streak; and worst of all word has it, young people see conservatism as “uncool.”
But help is on the way.
Two young, bright conservative activists, Tasha Kheiriddin and Adam Daifallah, have written a book called Rescuing Canada’s Right: Blueprint for a Conservative Revolution.
And that’s exactly what this book delivers: a blueprint.
Rescuing Canada’s Right delivers a bold plan of action showing conservatives not only how they can win elections, but more importantly how they can transform Canada’s statist culture and society.
Kheriddin and Daifallah, for instance, argue that to be successful the Conservative Party needs to be . . . well more conservative and more innovative when it comes to applying free enterprise solutions to issues like health care and the environment.
They also offer practical and useful advice on how the Conservative Party can make badly needed inroads among immigrants, the young and in Quebec.
The most interesting and provocative aspect of this book, however, is its core argument on the need for a conservative Canadian infrastructure “encompassing all aspects of public life, from the media, to the courts, to academia.”
In other words, Rescuing Canada’s Right is call for conservatives to seize back the country.
And while that’s a tall order, Kheriddin and Daifallah, who make their case with passion, with unassailable logic and with humour, show how it can happen.
This is an easy to read, informative and important book, which every conservative Canadian should read. And Liberals should read it too, just so they know what’s coming.
I am even happy when a tax cut is simply the result of crass, political calculation. I am even happy when the tax cuts are not deep enough or go far enough. I am even happy when tax cuts won’t happen for awhile.
So why am I unhappy with the tax cuts the Liberals announced yesterday?
Maybe it’s because I know the Liberals too well. They know how to promise tax cuts they just don’t know how to deliver them.
Remember the GST they promised to scrap? Remember the corporate tax cuts they were supposed to provide last year?
And I have a funny feeling that somehow the Liberals will figure out a way to forget about these tax cuts (small as they are) even if they do win the next election.
Wouldn’t it be nice to have a government that was sincere about cutting taxes because it was the right thing to do?
Now that would make me happy.
Monday, November 14, 2005
We Canadian conservatives, of course, often point to the Republicans as a successful conservative entity that, unlike our Conservatives up here, can put together majority coalitions and win elections.
But Ehrenhalt, says the Republicans are actually weaker than they appear. In fact, he calls the Republicans a “hyper-extended family” whose members – right-wing Christians, libertarians, suburban businessmen – have very little in common.
Ronald Reagan was able to unify these diverse groups because they all agreed on the need to fight communism.
But when communism collapsed so did Republican unity.
When the Democrats are able to capitalize on these Republican rifts, they win, as Bill Clinton did when he won back-to-back elections starting in 1992.
The emergence of the terrorist threat, says Ehrenhalt, reunited the Republicans and helped them win in 2004, but that glue he argues is also beginning to weaken, hence the recent Democratic victories last week.
So you see, even the mighty Republicans have problems too. The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the political fence.
Friday, November 11, 2005
Yet we must not forget about those Canadians who are risking their lives today for their country.
And the folks at the Canadian Coalition for Democracies have come up with a great way to say thank you to the men and women currently stationed in Afghanistan.
They are asking Canadians to donate to “Operation Rudolph”, a program aimed at purchasing special holiday gifts for each soldier in Afghanistan. Each gift will include a letter of thanks from students and adults.
This is a great way to make sure our troops enjoy a little Christmas cheer in a somber dangerous land.
You can learn more about this worthwhile initiative here
Thursday, November 10, 2005
And although it’s in the editorial section of the paper it really belong in the comic section, because it was pretty funny.
Dobson, who specializes in denigrating anything conservative as “virulently right wing”, was trying to make the case that Public Works Minister Scott Brison should not have apologized for calling the NCC a lobby group.
Brison, as readers of this blog know, is facing a possible lawsuit for falsely stating among other things, that the NCC was involved in illegal lobbying.
How Dobbin make his case?
Well he says our founder – the late Colin M. Brown –“took Ontario Premiers Bill Davis and John Robards on chartered flights to the Master Golf tournament in August, Georgia.”
That’s a hoot. Clearly Dobbin, somber working class socialist that he is, doesn’t understand these kind of golf getaway weekends. Believe me, the last thing anybody talked about on these trips was politics.
Then Dobbin claims our former president, David Somerville, was given a “special meeting with finance minister Michael Wilson in 1984 to lobby him on deficit cuts.”
I don’t know anything about such a meeting; the only time these two met that I know of occurred when Wilson harangued David because the NCC put out a “Tales from the Tax Trough” booklet that exposed Tory government waste.
Maybe that’s an example of reversing lobbying: politicians trying to get us to change our ways.
Finally, Dobbin says the “NCC presents position papers to public hearings.”
Yes we have done that from time to time, but here's a news flash: appearing before a public committee does not constitute lobbying. Anybody can appear before a public hearing.
In short, if Brison is hoping Dobbin’s “evidence” will help should we sue him for libel, he is deluded.
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
Funny what the threat of a slander lawsuit will do.
The National Post has a good line in one of its editorials today concerning Brison’s original half-baked apology which he put forward as an example of his “civility.”
Wrote the Post:
“Perhaps it would be even more civil if people like Mr. Brison refrained from publicly branding innocent politicians like Mr. Harper as lawbreakers when there is no evidence of their having committed any misdeeds or broken any rules. False demonization is a time-worn Liberal campaign tactic and we are sick of it.”
Monday, November 07, 2005
See below the text of a letter I emailed him today:
Dear Mr. Brison:
We cannot accept your apology for the following reasons:
Your comment that the National Citizens Coalition engaged in illegal lobbying was not “premature” it was dead wrong. As I stated in my first email to you, the NCC is not a lobby group. We are a non-profit corporation that promotes economic and political freedom through media ad campaigns. We provide a voice for thousands of Canadians who believe in free enterprise, individual freedom and honest, accountable government.
You failed to apologize for stating that the NCC was “convicted” of violating the Canada Elections Act. The NCC has never been convicted of any crime.
We requested a public apology. By that we mean an apology that generates at least as much media attention as your slanderous comments did.
Please understand that thanks to the election gag law your government enacted, the NCC is unable to defend its good name or to rebut defamatory comments that might arise during elections.
Indeed, your comments were clearly partisan and seemed designed to smear our organization.
That’s why it’s so important for us that you set the record straight loudly and clearly.
If an appropriate and public apology is not forthcoming soon, we will turn this matter over to our attorneys.
Saturday, November 05, 2005
See below a letter he emailed me late Friday after I demanded an apology and retraction:
Dear Mr. Nicholls:
Thank you for your letter dated today concerning my statement regardingthe NCC.
I wish to acknowledge that my statement was factually incorrect in two ways:
* I was in error to say that the NCC was charged six times with violations of the Elections Act.
* It was premature to say that there was a contravention ofthe Lobbyist Registration Act. In order to resolve and clarify thenature of these activities, I have asked the Registrar of Lobbyists toinvestigate. I was provided with incorrect information, but I accept responsibilityfor my statements. I regret my errors, and I withdraw those statements categorically.
Please accept my apology.
Sincerely, Scott Brison
Friday, November 04, 2005
A clearly desperate Scott Brison decided he was going to smear the National Citizens Coalition and by extension, our former president Stephen Harper.
Speaking before the media, Brison declared the NCC had engaged in illegal lobbying activity, that we had been charged with breaking the Canada Elections Act six times and that we had been convicted of violating the Canada Election Action.
The problem is they are all completely false.
The NCC does not lobby politicians, we were not charged six times with breaking the Election Act and we have never been convicted of anything.
I wrote Brison demanding an apology.
If one is not forthcoming, he can expect to hear from our lawyer.
I talked about this on the Mike Duffy news show this evening. Proud to be Canadian has put it on his site.
Check it out.
And while he’s off to a good start in that regard, much more needs to be done.
So in the interest of helping the Liberal Party help itself, I have compiled a list of 10 more Liberals Martin should flush out in the interest of cleansing his party.
Here are my suggestions along with explanations:
David “The Chiclets Kid” Dingwall, whose main achievement seems to be that he can chew gum and waste tax dollars at the same time.
Carolyn Parrish: Yes she already got kicked out of the caucus. But you can never be too careful. Ban her again just to be on the safe side.
Joe Volpe: Too many restaurant bills charged to taxpayers. We just can’t afford his appetite.
Pierre Pettigrew’s Chauffeur: Time for him to pay for his own European vacations.
Jack Layton: Ok so he’s not really a Liberal, but he plays one in the House of Commons.
Belinda Stronach: Liberals only needed her for one vote anyway.
Hedy Fry: Only claim to fame: Attacking cross burners who never existed.
Judy Sgro: Thinks Canada’s most pressing immigration problem is a lack of exotic dancers from Romania.
Ralph Goodale: Won’t introduce tax cuts, unless of course, they serve the purpose of distracting us from Liberal scandals.
Jean Chrétien –Read the Gomery Report.
Anybody else got any ideas?
In the latest edition of National Review magazine, John O’Sullivan says so far the answer is no.
O’Sullivan says Bush needed to get three things right to be counted as a successful conservative leader:
He had to halt the advance of the regulatory state.
He had to restore a sense of national unity.
And he had to prevent the rises of anti-Americanism in Europe.
On the all points, O’Sullivan says Bush has failed.
Indeed, under Bush, O’Sullivan points out that “Domestic discretionary spending has risen faster since 2001 than under another other president since LBJ and Nixon. Federal spending now accounts for over 20 percent – and the federal deficit about 3 per cent – of America’s GDP.”
Meanwhile, O’Sullivan laments that Bush has aided disunity with his support for bilingualism and with his support for an immigration policy that would “admit as many new immigrants as businesses wanted to employ without limit.”
Finally, Bush’s policy of promoting and encouraging the unification of Europe, O’Sullivan argues could result in the emergence of an anti-American superpower.
Yet, O’Sullivan says Bush can still turn things around, but he will have to act fast.
“He (Bush) needs a positive conservative agenda that can be successfully enacted in a relatively short time.”
Time will tell if the President can rise to the challenge.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
The meters are supposed to help consumers manage their costs by displaying how much energy they are using over a given period.
That gives me an idea.
Let’s install “waste meters” in the Ontario legislature that would display how much money McGuinty is squandering in a given period.
Maybe that might promote tax dollar conservation.
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
The featured speakers were former Ontario Premier Mike Harris and former Reform Party leader Preston Manning.
The purpose of the event was to publicize their “A Canada Strong and Free” platform, which by the way is excellent.
But I thought one of the most interesting remarks of the evening came from Manning, who suggested what he thinks is the real reason the federal government won’t clamp down on private medical clinics operating in Quebec.
Those clinics, says Manning, would battle the federal government in the courts which could lead to disclosure of their client lists.
So what, you ask?
Well says Manning, “Those client lists include the names of lots of deputy ministers, senators, cabinet ministers.”
So rather than face the embarrassment of being exposed as health care hypocrites, the Liberals content themselves with smearing any reforms Alberta might dream up.
It’s a good move and one the National Citizens Coalition has been urging him to do for months.
But it’s not enough, because this scandal was always about more than just wasted money and kickbacks.
What restitution, for instance, can the Liberals offer to make up for the fact that they essentially won elections using dirty money?
What restitution can the Liberals offer to make up for the fact that their antics have fueled separatist feeling in Quebec?
What restitution can the Liberals offer to make up for the fact that thanks to this scandal, Canadian voters are more cynical about politics than ever?
In short, the damage the Liberal Party has done, cannot be undone simply by writing a cheque.
And unfortunately for the country, writing cheques is the only thing the Liberals are good at.
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
NCC Says RCMP Should Investigate Chrétien
(November 1, 2005) The National Citizens Coalition says today’s Gomery Report should trigger strong action from Prime Minister Paul Martin to stop the scandals plaguing the Liberal Party.
“Prime Minister Paul Martin must order RCMP investigations into former Prime Minister Jean Chrétien and other top Liberals associated with Adscam,” says NCC vice president Gerry Nicholls. “The time has come to punish the guilty no matter how high they are in the party’s hierarchy.”
Nicholls notes Gomery’s conclusion that Chrétien bears some responsibility for the scandals is not enough.
“Canadians need to know if Chrétien broke any laws associated with this scandal,” says Nicholls. “Gomery has pointed the way, now Martin must have the courage to follow up with a serious police investigation of any wrong doing.”
Nicholls says the only way to stop the scandals is to ensure those guilty of abusing the public trust pay a price.
“So far no one has paid any price for this disgusting scandal,” says Nicholls. “If Prime Minister Martin is serious about making government honest he must punish the guilty.”
Monday, October 31, 2005
Case in point, the Toronto District School Board sent out a memo to school principles recently urging them to forgo any Halloween celebrations because they are disrespectful to Wiccans.
Says the memo:
“Many recently arrived students . . . share absolutely none of the background cultural knowledge that is necessary to view `trick or treating’; the commercialization of death, the Christian sexist demonization of pagan religious beliefs, as `fun’”.
And rather than handing out candies the Board suggests students “write health warnings for all Halloween candies”.
What we really need of course is a warning about fun-hating school officials.
Mind you maybe these officials are just taking their cut from Venezuela’s socialist leader Hugo Chavez who has condemned Halloween as part of the “U.S. culture of terror.”
And here I thought it was about getting candies.
Essentially Jackson urged the Tories to get tough in the next election.
“Get (Prime Minister Paul) Martin on the run, trip him up, and then put the boot in when he’s down on the ground . . . (Harper) must mercilessly tear Martin and his coterie apart at every touch and turn. Wage trench warfare.”
Sound kind of brutal, but then politics is and always will be a blood sport.
That’s something the Tories forgot in the last federal election. Indeed, one of the big mistakes in the Conservative 2004 campaign was their failure to counter the Liberal Party’s negative advertising blitz.
Nobody likes to admit it, but in politics going negative can work.
Friday, October 28, 2005
But it was a close vote, and many today argue the turning point was the historic “No” rally where thousands of flag waving Canadians from all parts of the country passionately displayed their love for both Canada and Quebec.
It emotional, it was patriotic and it was also quite illegal.
Yes that’s right.
The famous rally that may have saved the country actually violated Quebec’s election gag laws, which impose strict limits on how much either side can spend in a referendum.
Ironically the Liberal Party which helped to organize this illegal rally later went on to enact its own election gag law, quite similar to Quebec’s.
Funny isn’t it.
The Liberals think it’s Ok for them to speak out, even it means breaking the law, but they expect the rest of us to obey their undemocratic gag law.
Hypocrisy thy name is Liberal.
Thursday, October 27, 2005
Politicians in Quebec are now loudly complaining about paying to clean up Alberta’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Quebec wants special exemptions under Kyoto because they use hydro dams for power more than fossil fuels and they want Alberta to pick up more of the tab.
Of course, back when Parliament ratified Kyoto, Prime Minister Paul Martin said the plan would treat all provinces fairly.
Easier said than done.
Maybe they should get Rick Mercer to do more One Tonne Challenge ads.
Yesterday an auditor concluded that Dingwall’s infamously lavish expenses that he racked up while heading the Royal Canadian Mint was more or less within the public agency’s guidelines.
That may be so, but I wonder what a “moral audit” of his expenses would turn up.
Was it really moral for Dingwall to throw tax dollars around on his foreign travel junkets? Was it really moral for him spend more than $700 on dinner? And is it really moral for him to now demand a rich severance package?
Those are questions you can’t answer by studying receipts and guidelines.
Not that it matters.
When it comes to taking care of their cronies, the Liberals don’t care much about morals anyway.
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
The number of shootings in Toronto is soaring, so the Liberal government is naturally blaming, who else, the Americans.
And not just any Americans.
The Liberals are talking about suing U.S. gun manufacturers.
Yeah, that will stop the killings.
I can just imagine what the Canadian government lawyer would say in court:
“You’re honour, our case is simple. Until these evil gun makers smuggled their Glocks and Smith & Wesson’s into Canada, Toronto was – thanks to our gun registry program -- an idyllic crime-free paradise.
Our young people engaged only in wholesome government approved activities, such as finding out creative ways to meet Canada’s One Tonne Challenge.
Then, these merchants of death driven by a mad desire for profit, smuggled guns into our peaceful land and as if that’s not enough they forced our innocent kids to use them in American-style killing frenzies.”
That kind of logic, of course, probably won’t fool any judge; but it might very well fool the Canadian media.
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
But that’s nothing.
Today, he meets with NDP leader Jack Layton, envoy of the most powerful political party in Canada.
In fact, in the Liberal world Layton, with his 19 precious seats in the House of Commons, is much more important than even the United States of Amercia.
Consider that while Martin is all macho and tough-talking when it comes to dealing with the Americans, he becomes a groveling, kow-towing Super Wimp when Layton comes a calling.
Whatever Layton wants, Martin eagerly delivers on a silver platter.
The last time these two met, Layton demanded the government increase spending and put off promised tax cuts.
Now Layton wants Martin to clampdown on private health care, to help ensure cancer patients can’t make use of non-government facilities or treatment.
Martin will once again likely deliver.
Will this mean that sick Canadians will continue to suffer while waiting for government health care?
But Layton doesn’t care because to the NDP anyone who suffers this way is simply a martyr to socialism.
As for Martin, well what’s a little suffering compared to meeting the overall aim of his tenure: to hang onto power no matter what.
Monday, October 24, 2005
In an editorial in today’s paper, the Star seems shocked that the Liberal Party might actually make a decision to cut taxes based on political gain rather than principle.
I mean, come on we are talking about the Liberal Party here, the most cynical, and unprincipled political outfit since the Tammany Hall political machines of the 19th century.
Prime Minister Paul Martin won’t even put a tie on in the morning without consulting an army of spin doctors, pollsters and media consultants.
And what worries the Star is that Martin, in a move to boost his poll numbers, might actually cut taxes.
Writes the Star:
“If the Liberals make the choice they think is best for them, they will be able to do less for poor children who are forced to rely on the charity of food banks go get enough to eat.”
If we get a tax cut the Star argues it will turn Canada’s cities into some sort of Dickensian nightmare with armies of starving children roaming the streets.
As usual, of course, the Star has it backyards.
It’s the government’s crushing taxes which are driving us into the workhouses.
The TD Bank reported recently that take home pay for the average Canadians has stagnated for the past 15 years. The reason: high taxes.
Thanks to government, we are working harder and harder and getting less and less. What’s worse, our tax dollars aren’t used to save poor children; they are used to help poor Montreal ad executives, they are used to pay for David Dingwall’s gum; and they are used generally wherever the Liberals think they can buy some votes.
Maybe it’s time the Star got out of its fairy tale world and got a grip on what life is really like for Canadians.
Friday, October 21, 2005
NCC Says Liberals Playing Politics with Taxes
(October 21, 2005) The National Citizens Coalition says the Paul Martin government should stop playing politics with Canada’s tax policy.
Media reports indicate the Liberal government could introduce across-the-board tax cuts as early as next month, to offset any political damage resulting from the Gomery report due out on November 1.
“If media reports about the Liberals planning income tax cuts are true, that would be good news,” says NCC vice president Gerry Nicholls. “But their motivation seems to have more to do with politics than with sound fiscal management.”
Nicholls says the Liberals should have and could have cut taxes years ago, but they opted to put their own political needs ahead of the needs of taxpayers.
“Only now with the Gomery report looming and an election in the offing, are the Liberals discovering the need to help out overburdened taxpayers,” says Nicholls. “Political panic is not a sound basis for running the economy.”
Nicholls says tax relief and reform should be a central plank for all Canada’s political parties.
“We can’t afford a government that only cuts taxes every four years,” says Nicholls.
Nicholls says the Liberals seem more concerned about holding onto power than about doing the right thing for Canada.
“The Liberals represent old time politics,” says Nicholls. “We need leaders who understand the new global market realities. Canadians needs lower taxes to be competitive.”
If he does, then there’s a good chance the Liberal government will introduce “across –the-board” tax cuts for middle class Canadians as part of its strategy to defuse voter outrage.
Funny how politics works, isn’t it?
Not too long ago, when the National Citizens Coalition or others suggested Canadians needed tax relief, the Liberals and their allies in the media reacted with horror.
“If you cut taxes” they screamed “It will mean our hospitals will have to be gutted, our schools shut down and our environment ruined.”
Now, however, tax cuts are suddenly a key part of the Liberal “prosperity” package.
Of course, if Gomery goes easy on the Liberals on November 1, than tax cuts may go back to being bad again.
As one anonymous Liberal insider told the National Post, “They (the Liberals) want to see how things unfold in the Gomery report [before a final decision of a tax cut announcement is made.]"
This tells you everything you need to know about the Liberal Party: it has no sense of what is right or wrong, it embraces no real values.
Somewhere along the line this party stopped believing in anything. It has no philosophy, no moral compass, and absolutely no principles.
The Liberal Party is a cold, heartless and relentless machine programmed for only one thing: to win elections.
The Liberal Party has no other purpose.
So they won’t cut taxes because Canadians need relief; they won’t cut taxes to help our economy compete in the global economy; they won’t cut taxes out of any sense fiscal concern; but they will cut taxes if it serves a self-serving tactical political need.
All we can do is hope that Gomery provides them with a political need to do the right thing.
Thursday, October 20, 2005
Good because it mentions the National Citizens Coalition.
Actually, Susan Martinuk’s piece is about the Lively Seven, a group of courageous women who are battling against forced unionization.
The NCC is helping to finance the Lively Seven’s legal challenge and this has some union bosses hopping mad.
As Martinuk writes:
The Steelworkers recently issued a press release labeling the Lively Seven as a ‘band of martyrs’ who are being funded and ‘shamelessly exploited by’ a national right-wing, ‘extremist’ group that is never actually named.
This appears to be Canadian union-speak for the equivalent American statement, ‘vast right-wing conspiracy.’
Since the Steelworkers are reluctant to name the groups they target in press releases, I'll do it: The National Citizens Coalition is now assisting the Lively Seven in their legal battle. The group is dedicated to defending basic political and economic freedoms in Canada; no wonder the union feels threatened
You can learn more about this important case by visiting the website http://www.freethelivelyseven.org/
Yes he voluntarily left his job at the Canadian Mint; Yes he resigned under a cloud of suspicion; Yes he will receive a rich MP pension – but despite all this Dingwell still expects and indeed is demanding a fat severance package.
Because as he put it, he’s “Entitled to his Entitlements”.
In other words, all that matters is that Dingwall get his share of the loot. Nothing else factors into the calculation, certainly not whether or not such a payout is morally correct or whether or not it’s in the interest of taxpayers.
It’s Liberal greed and arrogance in its purest form.
What Dingwall and his Liberals don’t seem to understand is taxpayers have entitlements too.
We are entitled to honest government.
We are entitled to leaders who don’t view the public treasury as their own private slush fund.
We are entitled government free from cronyism and corruption.
Dingwall, of course, wouldn’t never understand our needs; it’s not part of the Liberal mindset.
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
The battle we lost, of course, occurred last year when the Supreme Court of Canada ruled 6-3 in favour of the Liberal government’s election gag law.
Consequently it’s now a crime for citizens to freely and effectively express political opinions during federal elections through paid advertising.
However, the NCC did succeed in delaying gag laws for more than 20 years.
Pierre Trudeau actually enacted a gag law way back in 1983 – but the NCC had the courts strike it down.
In 1993 Brian Mulroney also proposed a gag law, but the NCC succeeded in striking that one down too.
In other words we put off gag laws until 2005, when technology might make these kinds of laws unenforceable.
The emergence of Internet, emails and blogs offer citizens with a way to make their voices heard gag law or no gag law.
Indeed, nothing in the gag law prohibits the use of the Internet for political communication because there is no expense involved – the law is designed to stop election spending.
Can the Internet be an effective tool?
Yes. Political blogs in the United States have played a key role in raising funds for election campaigns, in getting out the vote and in raising the profile of certain candidates.
Meanwhile here in Canada, bloggers are beginning to debate what role they can play. See here and here for some interesting commentaries from Paul Tuns and Stephen Taylor.
Of course, if the Internet does become an effective tool, watch for politicians to quickly move to regulate and control it too.
And once they do, the NCC will be there to stop them.
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
And now, a study from the Fraser Institute confirms this view.
The study, Government Failure in Canada, 2005 Report, uncovers 284 examples of government incompetence, boondoggles and waste that occurred since 1992.
That’s right – 284.
In other words, the Adscam Scandal was not an isolated incident; it was, in fact, more like the norm or as the Fraser report puts it these kinds of scandals occur with “predicable reliability.”
Because it’s the nature of government, that’s why.
Government has no incentive to be cost-effective or efficient or scandal-free. Indeed all the incentives are for politicians and bureaucrats to spend as much as possible without pausing to think if such spending is actually wise or ethical.
So what’s the answer?
Easy. Make government smaller. Give our bureaucrats and politicians less to do. That would give them less opportunity to waste.
Friday, October 14, 2005
That led me to send out the following news release:
“The National Citizens Coalition welcomed the news that Carolyn Parrish won’t seek re-election.
“Parrish’s crude and crass behaviour, her strident anti-Americanism, her insulting comments were all embarrassments for Canada,” says NCC vice president Gerry Nicholls. “She won’t be missed.”
Nicholls says he hopes the former Liberal MP eventually fades into well deserved obscurity.
“All we can say is good riddance to a bad MP,” says Nicholls.”
I talked to a Canadian Press reporter who said he wished I didn’t “mince my words”.
What can I say?