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Monday
Jun262017

Enough About Trudeau's Socks!

Enough of the PM’s socks! Who cares what he wears. Media types moan the collapse of print media and wonder about where the journalism profession is going and they feed us crap about the colour or design of Trudeau’s socks.

Really?

Why was that something that Canadians needed to know about?

How about his inability to say no to foreign groups wanting Canadian dollars? What about taking care of some of our poor, our seniors, our homeless?

It was the summer solstice, how about an in-depth discussion about his government’s failure to deliver on its promises to our First Nations?

How about a discussion on the huge debt that he has racked up in less than two years in office? This is a debt so huge that my grandchildren and great grandchildren will have to pay it off.

But no, somehow we needed to be told about the colour of his socks. Another story and red herring as unimportant as the phony one about him photo bombing a group of prom students.

As long as the media get distracted by Liberal attempts to divert them from the real issues, we will get more photos and articles about his socks. I am not sure what is worse, the one wearing them or the media types who insist about writing about his socks.

Thursday
Jun082017

Twenty Years of Stable Military Funding

My answer to the latest Liberal bafflegab  that they have laid the groundwork to increase our forces, improve equipment and stabilize funding for the next twenty years-is this won’t happen in my lifetime.

Other than the staff in PMO; who believes these numbers? Actually I doubt any of them do either. It is a pretty sorry attempt to convince the public and certainly Donald Trump that we are doing our part.

To believe that this will ever happen you have to believe that Justin and the Liberals will be in power and remain undefeated for the next 20 years. If you believe that you are either incredibly arrogant or living in a fool’s paradise.

You also have to believe that the world won’t change and that  there won’t be other major world issues that occur that would require a shift of that funding to other departments in need.

At the rate that the Liberals are racking up the country’s debt, who really believes that they will be able to afford all of the back ended funding for the military, most of which conveniently occurs after the next federal election. This is nothing more than a cynical attempt to make their pre-election debt numbers look like they are manageable.

The next election will feature lots of new spending commitments across a lot of departments- do we expect this military spending increase to survive the Liberals and their promises, as they try to line up votes just prior to the next election. Wynne in Ontario has shown us just how cynical and free with taxpayer’s money the Liberals can be when getting desperate for votes.

Last but not least, who out there believes that the Liberals will keep this promise? Just look at what happened to one of their scared election planks on democratic reform- nope, this spending plan is dead in the water.

 

 

Thursday
May182017

Congratulations to Senator Greene

At first when I read this story, I thought the summer silly season had already arrived. For those not familiar with it, the silly season usually begins when the House breaks and reporters are having a hard time finding something to write about. But no, it was true; the Conservative Senate leadership had kicked a Conservative senator out of their caucus because he dared to have dinner with the Prime Minister!

Yes! You get to walk the plank now for such treasonous behavior!

Senate politics has always been more collegial and less partisan than in the House. That is a bonus not a negative. I know that having worked on both the Senate and House sides.

For those that haven’t followed the story, Senator Greene was invited along with every other senator who had introduced a government bill to have dinner with the Prime Minister. Senate leadership ordered him not to go. When Green insisted that it was his right to attend, he was kicked out of the caucus.

I am on Greene’s side on this one. This was not about breaking ranks on a key vote- it was about dinner!

I believe that senators and MPs as part of their duties have a right to meet with anyone from the other parties at any time that they want too. That includes dinner with the Prime Minister.

For one thing you always learn some intelligence that might be useful to your own side. You also build bridges and relationships with members of the other side that can come in handy down the road when your party needs help getting a motion through or when you want to open dialogue on issues that have the parties deadlocked.

If I was in Greene’s situation, I would have done the same thing. You attend out of respect for the office of the Prime Minister. It shouldn’t matter who the Prime Minister is; show respect for the office… you don’t have to like the man in it.

So now we have lost a Conservative who is free to vote as he sees fit- you have to shake your head over such stupidity.

This action of the Conservative Senate leadership is more of the same small mindedness that we saw towards the end of the Harper government. You have to roll your eyes that it is still going on- have they learnt nothing?

 

 

Tuesday
May022017

Mister Wonderful Has Left The Building

Kevin O’Leary came, he looked around and he left- that wasn’t much of a surprise. From the beginning one had to question the commitment he made to the leadership process. He avoided most of the debates and continued to spend a lot of time outside of Canada. One also has to question his political smarts- IE waving a spatula around, selling Senate seats etc. I feel sorry for his team as they worked hard and put in long hours and they were totally committed to getting him elected.

Now the leadership race is back to where it was before O’Leary became involved. It is the same dull, boring race that has gone on far too long. The Hill Times raised a good point today when they took a look at the quality of the present leadership contenders.

Certainly the ones who chose not to run- MacKay, Baird, Moore, Kenney are missed by many of the rank and file. However, the Party will have to live with their decisions and move on. They have served the party well and put in their time to the detriment of their personal life. Politics is all consuming and after years of service sometimes you need to step away and re-evaluate what you are doing. I expect that some of them will eventually come back as political life is also very addictive. They can’t assume though that they will automatically return to their former profiles. Other MPs will step up, new ones will be elected and some will have the same potential and fill the void they left.

If the “A” team isn’t playing, where does that leave us now? Well, we have a lot of B, C and D level players. Quite a few of those remaining are not leadership material, but could make good team players in a supporting role.

One thing is essential, the “B” team (O’Toole, Bernier, Scheer, Raitt, Chong) have to step up their game and so far I haven’t seen much of an improvement. Whoever wins has to get sharper, more political and develop the instinct that allows them to pounce as the other side makes mistakes. They also will have to appeal to Canadians from all walks of life, not a narrow based constituency.

Too many Conservatives fell for the media hype after Trudeau’s election victory and felt the guy was unbeatable. Nonsense, anyone can be beaten and you don’t have to be from the “A” level team to come out the winner. Think back a few years and remember “Joe Who”.  Joe Clark took down Justin Trudeau’s father who I would argue was a much more formidable opponent than Justin.

Governments and Prime Ministers have a way of defeating themselves, some sooner than others. The Liberals are not invincible under Justin Trudeau and two new leaders from the Conservatives and the NDP will have an opportunity to shine.

In politics as in life, history has a way of repeating itself.

Sunday
Apr162017

Please Sign The Petition

Easter is a time to think of family and share time together. For most of us it is one of the most enjoyable days of the year. Some however have not been that fortunate.

For that reason while I don’t usually advocate for the signing of petitions on this page; in this case I will make an exception. The story of the “British Home Children” is a very tragic one and few survivors are still alive today. Their story has been largely hidden from view and few Canadians know about this issue and it is not taught in most school systems here.

In this day and age it is hard to imagine that over a hundred thousand young children were shipped out from Britain to Canada by various child service organizations. This lasted from 1869-1948. Originally well intentioned, it often had tragic results.

Many Canadians are descended from these Home Children; yet don’t know about it because the children themselves kept it a secret out of shame.

The sad part is that while this was happening the Canadian government knew what was going on.

The attached video and petition seeks an official apology as has already happened in Australia and Britain (another destination for children in the same time period).

Today there are few survivors left and it would be fitting that they receive a full “official apology” from the Canadian government, a government that knew what was happening during this time period.

Attached is a link to the petition, please take a few minutes out of your day to sign it. The attached video is a bit long, but well worth watching. It will educate, shock and disturb you; but every minute is worth watching.

Thank you, Happy Easter and give your children a hug; they are fortunate to have a family that cares for them.

Petition and video link: https://www.change.org/p/open-letter-to-the-right-honourable-prime-minister-trudeau