April 29, 2007

Justin Deserved to Win

Oooh time to eat crow!

As I said yesterday, Justin knows the riding very well and I would be proud to have him as the Liberal MP for Papineau.

I still thought Deros would win this morning, but the reason Justin won was simple, he got out his vote.

Now that the race is over , I can unveil the actual card sales combined with their vote.

Justin Trudeau about 640/1060 or 60%
Mary Deros 327/960 or 34%
Basilio Giordano 217/840 or 26%

The shotgun deal WAS in effect Sunday as I spoke to many in both camps who were hoping for their candidate to finish second. If both would have brought out 50 more votes each, my prediction would have been right.

There were 600 current members of the association before the nomination but over 200 were Volpe ghost members and the rest were evenly divided.

Justin worked the riding. He got out the vote. He is the best candidate the party could have. No matter what the local strength of Deros, getting out a third of your vote is pitiful, and would probably not have delivered the goods in an election against the Bloc.

It is always good to have the guy who mobilized the best be your candidate…that applies at all levels of politics.

Dispelling a few Myths

For those who worry Justin will embarrass the party in Quebec, the man ran 6 weeks without making any comment that drew the ire of the French press. (If only Dion could be so lucky!) We will see their reaction tomorrow. My guess is it will not be that bad. Even the journalists thought Justin earned it. I know I felt he earned it after the interview and seeing the room today.

The Kennedy Toronto Factor

There is no doubt Justin got some help from outside, help which he cannot depend on during the federal campaign. However, he still got out 60% of his vote. He will make waves. Those in Quebec saw that he earned it, and it would surprise me if other Quebec Liberals did not lend a hand. We saw a few Ottawa staff people handing out Trudeau paraphernalia, but to be honest, it did not change the outcome.

Justin’s speech was meh, to be honest. (much better than the other two, don’t get me started on Giordano I am still offended)

Justin tried to channel his dad, but it didn’t work for me. People all remember Pierre Trudeau in their own way, so I don’t really think Justin will ever satisfy everyone by always channeling his dad. Justin’s best moments came when he was being himself…

He did sound a bit demagogic, and at times, like a certain MP from Etobicoke, much to my amusement. He needs to refine it, but I am confident he will, because Justin wants this badly, and he is willing to work very hard to get it.

I will seriously stop making predictions. The only one I got right was saying Dion would win on after seeing round 1 on Friday night. I think I am worse than Radio-Canada when it comes to these things…

Either way, for someone who thought Justin could never cut it, he delivered the merchandise and come election time, I am certain Justin will send Vivian Barbot packing…

Good Luck Justin

Today, you earned it!


Fuddle Duddle Prediction Desk Picks Deros in Round 2

On a rainy day in Montreal, the scene is set for a showdown in the north end riding of Papineau.

I planned to record the festivities but alas, my video camera is broken, so I will only watch from the sidelines.

The big story in this riding is the great leaps and strides Justin Trudeau has made in his first foray into elected Canadian politics. He had many doubters in the LPC(Q), and he was going to have to earn the respect of a few people, especially after prancing into the last leadership to support the most centralist, unilingual candidate in the field.

While there may be room for Justin Trudeau in Quebec, there is scarcely any room to continue the Liberal centralist policy that is out of step with the times and out of step with Quebec politics. We should never underestimate a Trudeau, but I think a little compromising may in order for the young Trudeau if he wins the nomination today.

Justin enters today as an underdog. He has the most first ballot support, but no second ballot support. I know the situation is eerily ironic, but it was not created by any of his detractors, just the situation Justin put himself in by choosing a riding with two large ethnic voting blocs, the Greeks and the Italians.

Deros has not gotten much publicity in this affair but if she wins, she will also make for a great candidate and a great MP. A city councilor for 7 years, she also won her seat with landslide margins, including sovereigntists’ votes. Her opposition to Robert Bourassa Extension may also encourage area voters to come out and support her come election time.

Many friends will be in attendance. I believe the entire former youth crew is getting back together today to witness the madness. It should be on the news as well. It will take place at College Andre Grasset on Cremazie near St-Hubert. Speeches will likely start at 1PM.

Good Luck to All


April 28, 2007

Justin Trudeau Addresses Papineau Issues

In what may be the most shocking twist yet, Justin Trudeau has earned my respect and I wish him well in tomorrow’s meeting.

I wish him well tomorrow, although smart money shows this race will likely be decided on a second ballot, and by fewer than 100 votes. I endorse nobody, as this is not my riding, and shouldn’t matter what I say…

I gave all 3 candidates an opportunity to respond to 5 questions, three specifically addressing pivotal issues in the riding of Papineau, the riding where I grew up. The campaign has been focused on its multi-ethnic nature when half the riding is in fact, French Canadian.

Deros still has the edge in terms of winning the riding, that cannot be disputed. However, I do believe Justin has the capacity to work hard and catch up, something I would have never said a few short weeks ago.

For a guy perceived as an airhead (by me) who lived off his father’s name and had no original ideas, Justin has come a long way. He knows the riding. My friends in the riding (working for the other camps) tell me he wants this so badly. We may still disagree on certain issues, but I would be proud to have him serving as a Liberal MP.

I promised him no editorializing his answers so here is the interview unedited (questions are italicized)

Bravo Justin

Why did you choose Papineau and not the others in Montreal that were open?

Residents of this urban, multicultural, and economically disadvantaged riding are faced in their day-to-day lives with issues and opportunities that are central to the future of this country and even this world. To know them, understand their challengesand aspirations and provide them with an effective voice in Ottawa, will be to serve not just them, but the real interests of the country as a whole. As an added bonus, if I can earn the trust and faith of the Liberals of this riding through a tough nomination process, and then take back the riding from a strong Bloc MP in the next election, we will havestrengthened both our Party and the federalist cause in Quebec.

There has been lots of focus on members voting along ethnic lines. The children of immigrants are voting Liberal less and less. Is there a way you plan to reach out to this base of voters to keep them in the Liberal camp?

Young people as a whole tend to be disillusioned by the current state of politics. However, though my years as an educator and an activist, I've seen that their apathy and cynicism stem not from the fact that they don't care about the world, but from the factthat they in reality care deeply about it, and are frustrated by their lack of input and relevance. I've dedicated much of the past ten years of my life to listening to and empowering young people by offering them ways to become engaged and connected to their communities, and will bring that passion with me to Ottawa. Children of immigrants also commonly feel that the Liberal Party takes their communities for granted, and reaching out to them will require a serious rethinking of the relationship we as a Party have with our grassroots. As politicians, we need to make Liberals understand that we need and value their input and support, and not just at election time.

Many youth and immigrants enter the workforce working at minimum wage. Have you ever worked for minimum wage? If yes, describe the experience and what it may have taught you regarding the lives many residents of Papineau face.

When I was studying at McGill, I worked as a waiter and bartender at The Tramway, a restaurant on St-Catherine's that is now a Second Cup. The biggest lesson I learnt from my time there was just how badly some people tend to treat the people who serve them. And it wasn't the outright aggressive ones who were the worst, it was more the dismissiveindifference of someone who feels so superior to you that you barely exist for them. Now I know full well that I'm a child of privilege, but for me that comes with a responsibility towards those who weren't so randomly lucky at birth. My goal is to use the voice, education, experiences and resources I have to help build bridges between Canadians of different backgrounds and to ensure that the residents of Papineau have the chance to contribute and fulfill their potential.

Much of the focus in this race has been given to the Park Extension section of the riding. Are there any issues specific to the St Michel and Villeray areas you would like to see addressed?

Villeray is the heart of the francophone community in the riding, and with so much emphasis put by the media and politicians on the multi-ethnic nature of Papineau, many residents of Villeray feel ignored. Worse, they often blame the newer arrivals for it. Iwish to reach out to this community and engage them in taking a more active role in helping build strength through differences, for it is through a dynamic and united community that the basic desires we all share, for good jobs, healthy families and safe neighbourhoods can be met.The issue of security is one that touches everyone in Papineau, but it is in St-Michel that it is a most pressing concern. There is a vicious cycle of isolation and fear that has people putting literal and metaphorical bars and walls between them. What is so needed is ways to address not symptoms but root causes, such as poverty, disempowerment andmarginalization, and a general lack of hope, particularly in the Haitian community. Again, building a stronger sense of empowerment within a united, engaged community can go a long way towards creating a true sense of security.

Describe one encounter that you have had on the campaign trail with a Papineau resident that has touched you personally. Explain why it has affected you.

I have, over the past three months, met a huge number of wonderful older residents who've offered me deeply moving stories about how my father and his legacies have touched their lives, and many, many younger people who've shared with me their frustrations and concerns with the present, as well as their hopes and dreams for the future. But I've also met with a good many community leaders from a sampling of the over seventy different cultural communities in the riding of Papineau, and it's one of those encounters that I'd like to share here. One afternoon I went to sit with the imam and other elders of one of the largest mosques in the country, and for about an hour we had a wide open discussion on a great range of topics. It wasn't just about Muslim issues, although of course they came up, it was on everything. We discussed the environment (green is the colour of Allah, after all), poverty, openness and intolerance, and the strength of community. We challenged each other on Canada's role in the world, and our relative successes and failures. It was a deeply satisfying beginning to a conversation that I hope to continue in the days and years to come. I walked out there with a renewed faith in the perspectives and wisdom available to those who are merely open and willing to listen to others, as well as a sense of the immense possibility offered by the pluralistic nature of this riding I so deeply want to represent and serve.


April 26, 2007

PLQ Abandons Nation, Fiscal Imbalance, and Quebec Nationalism

This gets funnier and funnier...

PLQ MNA endorses Justin Trudeau!

The other half of Papineau is Laurier, where the MNA there supports Deros

I await a comment from Benoit Pelletier.

Needless to say, Sunday will be an interesting day. Seeing as I enjoy mayhem, I would not cry if Justin won, but I know the Dionistas supporting his opponent might.

In the meantime, I sent an email to my PLQ friends saying "Welcome to Trudeaumania. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA"

The replies cannot be posted on a PG-rated blog.

I imagine this race will only get more entertaining


New Liberal Ad Misses the Mark

How could I have liked the first one so much and dislike the second one?

The two ads were similar except in the first one, the ad focused on Dion being a leader, and countering Tory ads quite effectively in the minds of the average Canadian.


(Cue highlights from good first ad) The second ad takes the better parts of the first ad, (it actually is a little sped up, FASTER DOUBLE FIST PUMP!) and then goes into an attack on Harper’s environmental position.

Harper is pretty vulnerable on the environment, despite actually accomplishing more than us (yes, our record really is that bad). The Tories recent Kyoto smear campaign did not help their cause.

How do the Liberals attack Stephen Harper?

(Cue the icebergs melting) melting ice…the theme is spring…


Screw us people! Climate change only affects the children. Don’t like the environment for you. Do it for the children!

(Cue the Liberal Environmental Record) The smokestacks are always ugly, but I would seriously be more worried that it’s Judgment Day because the sky is like totally on fire in the ad…

(Cue Dion speaking coherent English) The message is good, but I will be honest, my neutral viewing panel of my mom and my cousin were totally turned off by the baby. Dion’s message was ok, but that is only if you buy into the theory that

A) the environment is important and
B) no other factor, like jobs, family, or the economy is more pivotal to your vote than an iceberg at the North Pole.

I really liked the first ad more, it was about leadership. This ad is about the environment and we got rid of the positive side of our ads with the terrified baby and red sky.

People get Dion likes the environment…can we seriously move on to more important things…


April 25, 2007

Justin Trudeau: Just Watch Me Contradict Myself

It appears Justin is against shotgun deals, especially when one may screw him over. As reported here last week, membership sales show Justin is no shoo-in and in what would be the first Italian-Greek coalition I have ever seen, they may boot the wonderchild.

Trudeau's camp asked Deros' team about the rumours this week in a meeting, and said they had heard such a deal had already been formalized.

"I'm very wary of deals like that," Trudeau said.

"Any time there is a coalition that is based on anti-Trudeau or anti-anyone it worries me, particularly here in a nomination fight."

Was Justin even there December 2nd on the floor of the Palais des Congres?

I can’t wait for Sunday.


NDP-Liberal Strategery Meeting

Joke Layton: Stephane! What are you doing?

Dee-Yonn: Well Jack, I believe it is responsible to tell people that in two years, we will throw our hands (and the lives of Afghan women) up in the air and see who catches it.

Joke: Stephane! The NDP-Taliban secret backroom Deal-A-Tron 2000 needs Canadian troops to leave now. There is no point delaying the inevitable.

Dee-Yonn: You see Joke, too many Liberal MPs used scruples to extend the mission last time. Something about doing the right thing for Afghan society. We have a former general in our caucus too. The only difference is we don’t listen to ours.

Joke: Well, that sounds ridiculous. And nobody outdoes me! Jack! Layton! I need to do something more ridiculous than you. Have any suggestions?

Dee-Yonn: I am becoming an expert in doing ridiculous things lately. Why don’t you vote with the Tories to not call for a 2009 withdrawal? Then you can say you are against the Liberals and against the Tories at the same time.

Joke: Wouldn’t that be playing both sides?

Dee-Yonn: Well that is what we are doing too. Our resolution doesn’t call for the soldiers to come home. We can still put them in Afghanistan. It just means we do not want our soldiers to get shot. Nobody likes to get shot. The Liberal position is that we don’t like our army doing dangerous things, especially when it involves getting shot. Pollsters agree as well. Apparently, even pollsters don’t like to get shot. Our position is so vague because in opposition you don’t actually have to make any decisions, you just criticize the government. You know Joke, I think I am really getting the hang of this opposition thing.

Joke: Yeah after 40 years of the NDP doing nothing, you really realize how fun it is. In fact, when we actually got something done, it got so scary, because we are so used to being useless.

Dee-Yonn: What did you do?

Joke: We dumped the government before they could invest the money we made them promise, elected the Conservatives, and made sure they didn’t do anything about our priorities so we can continue bitching that the Liberals never did anything for Canada.

Dee-Yonn: Wait a minute Joke, are you still attacking me? And the Liberals?

Joke: Of course we are! We vote with Conservatives just to make you look stupid. You suggested it two minutes ago!

Dee-Yonn: This is unfair. Do you think it’s easy to find priorities for the NDP? You will now face the wrath of all my Facebook friends!


April 24, 2007

Harper Government Flip Flops on Carbon Market

Leading federal issue in the news in Quebec this evening is not the failed afghan motion but the flip flop of the Harper government on the issue of a carbon market.

Volte-face indeed!

I have not read the Bloc Quebecois motion but if the news reports are right, the Harper government voted to support a motion establishing a carbon market in Montreal where people can trade carbon credits in an effort to meet Kyoto targets.

The vote was unanimous…

I wait to see how this will work, but it is interesting to see how this story will develop…

French Election Hijinx

I don’t get to vote in this one like I did in Italy, but it is no secret I would advise all French citizens to vote for Segolene Royal.

Here are a few of pieces of propaganda that I enjoyed from the Anti-Sarko youth.

I should note that Sarko's politics resemble those of Mario Dumont...

Also, in Europe, Liberal means economic liberal. Therefore, in Europe, I would be called a socialist…

Sarkozy is Jean-Marie Le Pen with more cops and a French Michelle Muntean...shudder

Allez Sego!

April 22, 2007

Canadians Ready For a Carbon Tax, but not the Liberal Party

The insistence of the Liberal Party in continuing to avoid calling their plan a carbon tax is becoming rather entertaining.

David Suzuki was on Question Period today claiming that Canadians are ready for a carbon tax. I agree with him. I fully support the idea that the polluter should pay a tax. Some of us normal people call it Corporate Responsibility...

Anyway, our fearless leader followed Suzuki in touting our Green Deposit, (It used to be an investment account…like ING…SAVE YOUR CREDITS!)

"It's a deposit that the companies will have to give to the environmental bank -- and they will have this money back if they decrease their emissions," Dion told Question Period co-host Jane Taber.

"It's like when you have your bottle of Coca-Cola and you bring it back to the grocery store. You get your money back. It's not a tax."

The fact that the same principle applies to income taxes (fulfill conditions and get refund) is irrelevant to my argument but worth mentioning.

It was Dion’s other comment that caused my mother and me to look at each other and burst out laughing.

The environmental bank!

Canadians hate banks...they dont need another one...we should just tax big bad polluters instead.

However, my mother and I had fun imagining how this environment bank would work...

Does it sound like a giant tree house to you guys too? That is how I picture it. Is the Environmental Tree House Bank going to have branches? Are they going to put their ATMs in trees?

Will there be ATM fees? (big selling point for Joke Layton)

What is an environmental credit? Is it printed on recycled paper? Are there denominations? Which bill has the picture of Elizabeth May on it?

Most importantly, what is this tree house bank gonna cost to set up, and are the estimates going to be given in Allan Rock numbers?

Just listen to David Suzuki, copy him again if you have to, and call this thing a tax, and please never say something as pie-in-the-sky as environmental bank ever again.

April 21, 2007

The Psychic

This will haunt Harper forever.

I do not blame Harper for having an image consultant, but you would figure if Tories have enough money for a death star, they can afford an image consultant.

To be honest I am starting to get worried.

Our image consultant is Kyoto the dog and the Tories have a PSYCHIC!

What if the psychic saw the damage Kyoto would do to our economy?

Who needs fixed election dates when you have a psychic telling you when you could win?

Who needs Wajid Khan’s report when the psychic could just read his mind and report to Harper?

Why have competition for Public Works contracts when the psychic knows that Michael Fortier’s friends will do a good job?

Why ask if Daniel Paille is a sovereigntist if the psychic already knows? Or why have an inquiry into the matter if the psychic already knows the outcome?

The list goes on and on.

Like I said…forever…and if you do not believe me…ask the psychic.

April 20, 2007


"What exactly have we as Canadians brought to the Afghan people? As far as I can see it is instability,"

"Under the previous U.S. backed Taliban there may have been oppression, but there was not fear for people's lives every single day because of suicide bombers."

This is disgusting.

Who could possibly say that Afghans, especially Afghan women, were better off under the Taliban?

Is this some crazy Dipper? or a Radical activist?

No...It is Liberal MP Colleen Beaumier.

The party that stands up for women says ending the Taliban wasn’t worth it.

Executing women for going out in public. That is WAY better than instability…

In 1997, the Taliban dragged women into their houses by their hair, forced them into house arrest, stopped educating them, and 10 years later, instead of being proud to have helped end this horror, we have an MP saying we should have never intervened.

Mrs. Beaumier needs to be seriously reprimanded.

What the F@#$ is happening to the Liberal Party?

I have my own reservations about the Liberal Afghan position, but if we want to maintain any shred of our credibility in terms of foreign policy, we cannot stand by and listen to our own MPs say that we should not defend the rights and values we preach in our own country.


April 19, 2007

Top 10 Reasons Why Kyoto is Evil

10) Kyoto makes baby Jesus cry.

9) Kyoto makes beer go flat.

8) Kyoto was the one-armed shooter on the grassy knoll.

7) Kyoto makes Don Cherry’s suits.

6) Kyoto is the father of Anna Nicole’s baby.

5) Kyoto makes everything taste like chicken.

4) Kyoto before marriage is a sin.

3) Kyoto taught Sanjaya Malakar how to sing

2) Kyoto is the reason Europeans need to wear visors.

1) If Kyoto wins, the terrorists have won

Papineau Nomination 10 Days Away and its Too Close to Call

In 10 days, Papineau residents will flock to College Andre Grasset and pick their future MP. In what has been a heated nomination to say the least and after the card deadline has passed, I can report that nobody is expected to win on the first ballot.

Less than 3000 cards were sold.

Leading in first place is Wonderchild Justin Trudeau, whose main accomplishments include finding Papineau on a Map, and playing a guy named Papineau in a movie. He leads the pack with about 37%. But he has nice hair. It really is a toss up. (Ugh I sound like Jane Taber)

In second place is City Councillor and Robert Bourassa Extension Stalwart Mary Deros, who has sold about a third of the cards in this nomination race. Her base is the Greek community in Park Extension. If Mary gets her vote out, she will likely finish second.

Placing third in membership sales is Corriere Italiano editor Basilio Giordano, whose support is based on the Italian base in the riding. He has more than 25% of the card sales and is within 10% of Justin Trudeau, so expect the race to be close.

Of the riding’s 600 present members, many of whom are associated to former Pettigrew assistant and one of my favorite targets JS Marineau, Giordano may have a leg up as rumor is Marineau has given Giordano his blessing.

Nominations are all about getting out the vote. I will be at Andre Grasset to document the festivities. Rumor of a shotgun deal being made between Deros and Giordano have the Trudeau camp feeling very much like Michael Ignatieff facing the shotgun deal that sunk him.

Nationalism is not an antiquated 19th century concept. When Justin Trudeau takes on the Italians and the Greeks next Sunday, he may just learn the hard way.

April 18, 2007

Liberal Ad Hits The Mark

Tory Ad: Dion is not a leader

Liberal Ad: Dion being a leader

Turn off the Death Star boys (Oh wait, they DID!)

Back to the ad, how can I be so simplistic?

Well, people don’t really know the back story behind Cop 11, and they frankly don’t need to.

They see Dion being a leader in front of credible people. (Cue Picture with UN logo)

Dion seems to know what he is speaking about. (Cue Dion speaking coherent English and actually saying something)

Dion needs to be assertive. (Cue the GAVEL!)

Dion needs to be excited. (Cue the fist pump)

The ad does what it has to do to blunt the effect of the Tory Ads. Overall it hits the mark.

And it's positive...which can't hurt

Queens and Separatists

No, the two are not interchangeable…

Gilles Duceppe is offended that the Queen of England would want to attend a ceremony honoring the 400th anniversary of the founding of Quebec City. We could always invite the French Monarch, but oh wait, never mind…

Newsflash Duceppe

Read your license plate, do you remember who won?

Ok good…

Who is the Canadian head of state? Queen Elizabeth II

Yes, Ca-Na-Da the country Quebec joined in 1867 and the province that voted twice to stay in Canada. I know it’s a foreign concept to you Gilles, but Canada still exists and if the head of state wants to come to a big celebration of our country’s history, she can come, and the people will love her…

I guess good old Duceppe is just sharpening the knives, he’ll have to stab some Queen in the back soon enough…

April 17, 2007

Charter Anniversary Missing Something Special

Hey Pierre, It’s Been a Generation

Pierre Trudeau was a great Prime Minister. He did many great things for Canada, one of which was repatriate the Canadian Constitution 25 years ago. Don't get me wrong. The Canadian Constitution is one of the most important documents in Canadian history.

It's sad that Stephen Harper needs to be asked 5 times before he can say he supports this great document.

Pierre Trudeau also said that change in the constitution would not be needed for a generation.

Some people wonder why Quebecers support the principles in the Charter but do not support the document itself.

Are Liberals against Tax Cuts for families? We just voted against them. Are we against the Eco-Fund for environmental programs? We just voted against those as well.

Are Quebecers against the rights in the Charter? Or against the freedoms it provides? Of course not. The fiasco that went down in Quebec City after the document was repatriated had nothing to do with what was in the Charter but what was not in it.

Back to what happened in Quebec, M. Remillard made Quebec’s “demands” clear: (demands is in quotations, because the term was lost in translation, demandes in French is not as forceful as the English term)

A veto for Quebec

Recognition of Quebec’s distinctiveness

Limit of the Federal Spending Power to prevent invasions of provincial jurisdiction.

Jean Chretien promised to not re-open the Constitution. He kept that promise. However, he did pass two resolutions in the house accomplishing the first two of those goals. Also, his intergovernmental affairs minister removed the strings from provincial transfers, but the finance minister did not restore transfers to previous levels.

Stephen Harper, taking the lead from Michael Ignatieff and the PLC(Q), upped distinct society to nation within Canada. Harper also restored transfers to the previous levels. (Also recommended by Bob Rae, Michael Ignatieff, and the PLC(Q))

Now that all the emotion from a generation ago has dissipated, I believe it wouldn’t be too difficult to stick all these things in their appropriate places and allow Quebec to say “Yes” to Canada once and for all.

That way, we can celebrate the Charter for what it represents everywhere in Canada, a document that protects the rights and freedoms of individuals everywhere. We need to celebrate that these values, Canadian values, define who we are as a people. We also need to do it as a united country. The longer we let the stalemate continue, the more we jeapordize that.

April 16, 2007

Jack Layton Itinerary

9:00 AM Press Conference Denouncing Secret backroom Alliance between Stephane Dion and Elizabeth May

10:30 AM Caucus Meeting where Jack Layton discusses all the NDP non-backroom deals which have accomplished anything for working families.

10:31 Nap

12:00 Lunch Outdoors in front of television cameras to prove Layton isn’t engaging in any back-room deals.

1:00 Run around Parliament Hill looking for microphones to denounce the backroom deal between Elizabeth May and Stephane Dion.

2:15 Question Period spent asking Stephen Harper what he will do to prevent the affront to democracy that is the backroom deal between Stephane Dion and Elizabeth May.

3:00 Arts and Crafts at an Ottawa Elementary school in front of reporters where Jack Layton teaches kids that backroom deals are bad and that red and green make a shitty brown. “Classrooms are not backrooms.”

4:00 Holds another press conference denouncing the lack of civility in Parliament. “The NDP wants to get things done. We are open to all discussions that can get results for working families.” Elizabeth May appears in the back of the room… Layton says “You backroom wench, stop killing Canadian democracy”

5:00 Takes call with Taliban leader to negotiate peace in Afghanistan. Rejects call from Elizabeth May because he is too busy trying to cut a … deal to save Canadian lives in Afghanistan. “The Taliban and the NDP want to get results for Canadian soldiers. We don't agree with the Taliban on all the issues, but it's about going issue by issue to get things done for Canadians.”

April 15, 2007

Sunday Caption Contest

Ground Rules: Nothing Racist
Note: he is clearly in a Sikh Temple, so please nothing insensitive
"Clearly Green is not my only other favorite color"
"Purple is the new Green"
"Psht! you know I'm Fabulous"

April 14, 2007

We Should Hear Dumont Out

Acting like the Premier of Quebec, Mario Dumont today mused about the possibility of signing the Constitution, cementing Quebec’s place within Canada once and for all.

Would it kill the separatist movement? Probably not. Would it deflate it? Definitely. Jean Charest has a fine line to walk here. A defeat of the separatist movement would likely put a majority of Quebec seats in the hands of Mario Dumont and the ADQ. Charest would likely have to move the party to the left while trying to hold on to the centre.

Back to what Dumont, and theoretically, what Charest wants as well.

They wish to limit the federal spending power, in addition to constitutionalizing the status of Quebec as a nation within Canada, likely (and hopefully) in the preamble of the Constitution.

In terms of the spending power, basically, what the provincial government wants is to prevent the federal government from recklessly spending in provincial jurisdiction without the provinces agreeing to it first.

That means that if the federal government is ever in deficit, it does not gut transfer payments as it did in the early 90s and then create national programs instead of re-transferring the money.

Basically, no more fiscal imbalances.

This shouldn’t be a problem for Liberals because fiscal imbalances already cannot exist. (sarcasm)

There are several ways of doing this and I believe the Liberal Party should come up with a policy of their own which is not a complete rejection of the proposal. It should be in the interest of the Liberal Party to get Quebec to sign the Constitution just as much as it would be to any national federalist party. I expect the BQ to obstruct but as current polls are showing, their relevance is diminishing to its lowest levels since it was created in 1990 after the failure of Meech.

The least we Liberals can do is hear out Mario Dumont, and come up with a counter-offer. It is very likely the next election in Quebec will be decided over which party makes the most reasonable offer. The Liberals cannot stand on the sidelines and complain. We brought home the Charter. We should seek to end this problem once and for all.

For a Special Occasion, I Go into Detail

I have to admit I was enjoying myself yesterday.

Red Tory, I think irascible is a little over the top (especially when most of my “anger” is sarcastic), but choleric is pretty accurate in describing how I have been feeling the past little while with regard to the judgment and the political instinct of our leader.

I guess I am sort of a purist when it comes to politics. I don’t mean I am not open to change. I just think that disrespect is the worst way to lose a voter because they tend not to come back.

I actually like Elizabeth May. I like her because she is quirky. I like her because she has worked tirelessly for her cause. I also want her elected to the House of Commons.

Spending most of my short political life in Quebec, I am accustomed to leveling the “national party” argument against the likes of Gilles Duceppe because they show a fundamental disrespect for the rest of Canada by taking their money for their party, but wanting to break the country up.

For the Liberals of Central Nova, we have told them we prefer to see somebody else elected, a party with principles different than ours, with a different history than ours. As much as some people like to think that leaders are everything when it comes to voting, for the 70% of the vote that does not budge every election is based on deep party ties which transcend who the present leader is.

Nowhere is this deep tradition more present than in the Maritimes. The Atlantic Provinces need a good reason to change their MP most of the time. Last election, with Quebec and Ontario experiencing major change, Atlantic Canada saw 2 seats change hands. What do we tell the lifetime Liberals of Central Nova? That in this constituency, Liberal values don’t matter? Why this riding and not any of the other 307?

I usually don’t listen to Jack Layton but I am told he thinks backroom dealing is bad. If somebody can prove to me how the only accomplishment ever in 40 years of NDP history, the NDP budget, was NOT backroom dealing, I will vote for the NDP. Seriously Jack, get a grip…

I understand that we all don’t like dogboy and we think his time is best spent moping on his farm with his neighbour’s dog rather than embarrassing Canada on a daily basis.

If we think Elizabeth May should get into Parliament on principle, why not give her a Liberal riding to run in? She wanted to run in one up until she started making phone calls and figured a riding that went Conservative for 40 of the last 44 years was the place to be…

But she did run in London, in a Liberal seat, and came second. If a Liberal didn’t run, she would have likely won too. Liberals actually do have a tradition of not running against a leader when they seek a seat in Parliament after winning their party’s leadership.

I guess the real principle here is that Liberals are the best and then if no Liberal is available, Elizabeth May is just as good. I actually think she is better than a back bench Liberal MP when it comes to promoting the environment. You won’t ever see me saying we should not present the Liberal option in a general election…EVER! How silly of me…

Now that we have rationalized making political orphans out of 10 000 Liberal Nova Scotians, why not do it in the 25 or so other ridings where Liberal votes allow the Tories to beat the NDP. If the goal is to beat Stephen Harper, we should be willing to make political orphans out of these 250 000 Canadian Liberals as well…after all, the ends do justify the means, right Scott…

There is a method to accomplish this kind of madness and it was accomplished by a Liberal which we all admire, Jean Chretien.

In his riding of Shawinigan or Saint-Maurice-Lafleche, Mr. Chretien had a tough time getting ahead of the Creditiste (damn the ADQ) and in order to make his life easier, he would make sure one of his friends would win the Conservative nomination, and then not campaign very much during the election. According to Jean, some people just liked the business they would get by having their name on the ballot and on the posters.

This strategy was not public. It was not a park-your-vote ploy in Shawinigan. It was slightly nefarious methods by one of the smartest political operatives in Canadian history. So if we wanted Elizabeth May elected in Central Nova, we would put up a symbolic candidate who wouldn’t campaign too hard, and allow some of our softer vote to go green. I was an advocate for this kind of strategy as one of my readers went and pointed out.

“I'm sure we can keep Roger Cuzner somewhat occupied.” is what I said. Not saying Mr. Cuzner is a bad guy. Actually, to the contrary; Mr. Cuzner is a really great fellow. I actually think we need Elizabeth May in Parliament to get the environmental message out. I do not, however, appreciate the openly crass methods that Mr. Dion has used. It damages the credibility of the party I have loved my entire political life.

I also do not appreciate Ms. May leveling criticism at our party after we did her the biggest favor she will ever get in her career. Her loyalty is to Dion, not to the Liberal Party. Sounds Lapierrish to me. Last time I checked, it was these Liberal voters she needed to get elected…not Green voters…

By openly endorsing Ms. May, we are giving her party instant credibility, further splitting our vote. It would have been one thing to quietly participate in one riding, (probably better to do Saanich Gulf Islands) and let the chips fall as they may. It is entirely different to openly acknowledge that we do not care for our voters in a part of the country, where party loyalty is very, very important.

As usual, calls of my disloyalty appear. I am not terribly surprised. Some Liberals seemed to have confused Tous Ensemble with cult-like Kool-Aid drinking. (Hi Jason!) By rallying to a leader, it should never mean that one has to throw their principles out the window and blindly support the leader’s decisions. We should never abandon our Liberal principles anywhere, even in ridings where we are certain to lose. Did we learn anything from Howard Dean? Or were we just waiting for him to scream?

The best parties are the ones with a vibrant internal debate. That applies to the best democracies as well. Those with the most competitive democracies are often the best…

Strategic voting is an option all parties offer to Canadians. By removing one of the candidates, we no longer offer the option, but force strategic voting onto Canadians. I hardly think this is the way the greatest political machine in the western world over the last century, would operate. Just the opinion of a perplexed Liberal…nothing more.

April 13, 2007

Cherniak “Elfin Prince of Progressive Canada”

This day has just officially become a gong show...


Elfin Shark Jumper of Progressive Canada?

Why Have Two Parties?

A Statement from Dion on the Green Party site

A Statement from May on the Liberal Party site

Elizabeth May could have been our star candidate in Central Nova

Or we could throw away any credibility we had left.

Our choice.

It’s not easy to make these kind of priorities

Where Art Thou Natural Governing Party?

I think we jumped into a hybrid and drove Elizabeth May’s credibility through the roof…

And if anyone can tell me how many more seats a Green vote split helps us win off Stephen Harper, I will give them a cookie.

Also, 10 000 votes is 17 500$ a year, this is one expensive party favor….

Next time Miss May, if you love Dion so much, run for the Liberals…

April 12, 2007

Liz Thompson To The Rescue

Liz Thompson To The Rescue

After that embarrassing attempt at a smear against Daniel Paille…

(Oh no he’s a separatist, our leader once voted yes, but that doesn’t matter)

Liz Thompson and her secret journalist technology known only as “google” was able to find out in, according to Paul Wells, 3 minutes that Mr. Paille once blackmailed companies to stop telling the truth about the consequences of eventual Quebec sovereignty. Sounds like a stand-up Conservative politician to me!

This Earnscliffe stuff still needs to be investigated, but I think at this rate, we’d be better off letting Liz do the digging than any honourable people in Michael Fortier’s rolodex…

Half of Quebec Unqualified to Work for Federal Government?


With Calculators

And Pencils

In our government…

We did not make this up

Choose your Canada

Ok so we all know almost half the province voted YES in 1995.

We also know that people who voted yes in 1980 went on to become unity minister and do one heck of a job…

We made a guy who said “I am only a federalist if Paul Martin is Prime Minister” in 2004 the minister of Transport…he meant Liberal…still just as bad…

Last time I checked, we are to judge this man by the report he produces, and not by his referendum vote 12 years ago.

While I still think Sheila Fraser should be the one looking into this, I am not terribly surprised…the vehement defense and smearing of Paille before he even reports a word shows how some people are antsy for this investigation to take place. (I think Jean Lafleur has a place to rent in Belize)

This appointment is no more nefarious than appointing the best friend and principal secretary to Brian Mulroney to be principal counsel in an inquiry aimed at the throat of Jean Chretien.

My nonna always taught me that you reap what you sow…

April 11, 2007

Here Comes Earnscliffe-Gate!

An Inquiry on the Former Prime Minister and his Associates? Shock and AWE!

Well, I guess the Conservatives do appreciate the irony of certain situations.

After a regime change, it would certainly be bad form to call an inquiry investigating the former Prime Minister and all his associates.

So after Airbus and Gomery, now comes Earnscliffe-Gate. This is all getting rather predictable.

Michael Fortier took a break from his campaign in Vaudreuil to hire a former PQ minister to look into polling contracts commissioned from 1990-2003.

I don’t care that former separatists head inquiries. We have Pierre-Marc Johnson doing the Concorde overpass inquiry. Former Premier Johnson is a good guy, and has committed to doing a good job, above the fray of partisan politics.

Also, I think Liberals calling all separatists evil is a little funny, especially for a certain Martini blogger who so lovingly embraced Jean Lapierre…(Hi Michelle!)

Now if I had to pick somebody to investigate spending in the federal government, I would ask…SHIELA FRASER!

What are we paying her to do anyway?

I do not think we have to worry about Paille because if he goes on a tirade against Canada, and therefore, the federal government, his report, like that of Senor Gomery, will not be worth the paper it is printed on…

But like we have learned with past inquiries, the facts don’t matter…

Harper Waiting Until he is 5 Weeks Away

Apparently, I was a little too subtle yesterday when I spoke of the resilience of the Liberal voter.

The trend which emerged from the SES poll released yesterday is that so far, Harper has not converted his popularity into votes. We do know that when Harper’s popularity went up in late 2005, it was a sign of things to come…but there is no Gomery to seal the deal.

(Memo to Tories: Kick the bastards out does not work when you are the bastards in power)

You need a catalyst to make people change their minds. Right now, no amount of insults thrown at Stephane Dion seem to be doing the trick…yea so Dion is Preston Manning with a French accent…so what…these people are life-time Liberal voters…

For most of my family changing their vote is tantamount to changing their tomato sauce recipe. (They don’t. It is inherited and passed down.)

Harper is a smart guy. I call him the Conservative Jean Chrétien, which probably explains why I respect Steve so much.

When he sees his antics start to pay off, he will trip and the government will fall. Harper will go when he is 5 weeks away from a majority, not a day earlier, and not a day later…

I guess what I meant to say yesterday is that the train wreck is coming, and that it is not here yet because we are still standing firm on the tracks.

And despite the entire hullabaloo you will hear in the next few weeks, if we do not have an election that is the reason, because Harper is the one driving the train and knows exactly what he is doing.

On "Betrayal" in Equalization

Danny Williams is on a murderous rampage against this new equalization formula...

In fact, I would say Williams got lucky, because all offshore revenues should have been included in the formula.

The point of equalization is to make things equal. By excluding offshore revenues, we are telling Newfoundland they are getting more because they complain the loudest.

That is the kind of assymetrical federalism I deplore. It becomes clientelism...

Welcome to Latin America!

Anyway, here is a quote I agree with on the topic...

"my preference is to go with the logic. We have ten provinces in Canada. Then you take into account the ten provinces in the formula. All the revenues affect the -- the fiscal capacity of provinces. You take into account all revenues.”

Person who guesses who it is gets a cookie...

April 10, 2007

SES Poll Shows Resilience of the Liberal Voter

For many it was doom and gloom this morning, when SES released the popularity of the leaders from their 36-33 national poll.

Let’s just say that the results of this one were not as flattering for us.

It showed that 16.7% of respondents think Stephane Dion would make the best Prime Minister, despite the fact double that amount would vote Liberal in the next election.

In Quebec, results were similar, where Dion’s popularity has hit rock bottom, at 10%
Yet 18% of the respondents said they would vote Liberal.

Overall, 26% of Liberal voters said Harper was a better PM. This is the number which had me scratching my head. Even I wouldn’t answer Harper despite the fact I was satisfied with much of what he has been doing.

Then I thought of my family, the mass majority of which just LOVE what Harper is doing. However, when prodded, many admitted that they would still vote Liberal (in their riding the alternative is the Bloc).

Liberal support is a lot harder to woo than Mr. Harper intended. Even in Quebec, where Harper has made it back to 2006 election numbers and is starting to trend up, the Bloc has lost very little support thus far. If Harper can close the 9 point gap between himself and the Bloc, with a large chunk of Bloc votes concentrated in Laval, East Montreal, and Longeuil, expect fireworks.

Until then, he cannot get his majority until the actual people decide that the party with the best leader deserves their vote. The lack of movement, despite the attack ads and a friendly media, may just be what will put off the election until the fall.

Liberals must continue to hold their ground, but we need to convince the 60% of Liberal voters who do not think Dion is the best leader first. If we can get that message across to our own people, we can take our battle to the other parties more effectively.

We are the Nation of Vimy Ridge

There is a Harvard professor who likes to say “We are the nation of Vimy Ridge.” I was taught the very same thing in high school.

That battle allowed Canada to free itself from Britain to step out onto the world stage.

Our army ventured where others had tried and failed. Canada is the country built on unchartered territory.

We wrote the UN Declaration of Human Rights. We invented Peace Keeping. We are one of the most progressive countries in the world because we stand up when others do not.

That is why we hold down the fort in Kandahar no matter what our allies do because it is the right thing to do.

We ARE the nation of Vimy Ridge. The six soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice on Sunday continue to embody that spirit.

April 8, 2007

SES points out the Obvious…

Stephen Harper has yet to gain enough votes to get a majority government, but trends are starting to emerge, specifically in Quebec. The latest numbers out of my home province have the Bloc at 37, Tories at 28, and the Liberals in 3rd at 18.

Nik Nanos, who is a smart guy, say the Liberal numbers collapse may have a direct co-relation with the sponsorship being back in the news, and not with the federal budget.

I guess being there but not knowing anything is still not an excuse for the Liberal Party in Quebec. Guilt by association is alive and well in Quebec. “Dion was there! He should have known!” may become a factor if the Lafleur thing stays in the headlines…

I do know that sponsorship anger in 2006 sent votes to the Bloc. This time, some support seems to be going to the Tories. This is kind of alarming. If the Tories replace the Liberals outside of Montreal as the federalist option, then our chances in about 50 Quebec ridings just went caput…(most were already caput). With no other viable federalist option, the vote in some of these regions may not split, and the Tories stand to gain a few ridings, especially those where the PQ came 3rd provincially…a prime example of which is Vaudreuil Soulanges, where Michael Fortier is running and the PLQ held on to both seats with the ADQ finishing a strong second in both…

Stephen Harper does not yet have his majority, but 25 seats for him is becoming a possibility in Quebec, and if it were to happen, that would put him halfway there…

April 5, 2007

Quebec Radio Ads

Thankfully, the Liberal Party of Canada is relying on more than just Jason Cherniak to get out the message.

The only problem with the ads…is that like the Tory ones, they just attack the opponent, for attacking their opponent…

Here are the three radio ads translated

First ad (and the best one)

“If Stephen Harper is convinced his accomplishments up to now are so good, would he spend all his money on negative ads about Stephane Dion? What do you think?”

The message is good, but much more appropriate towards the English ads,

The new Quebec Tory ad, while going after Stephane Dion, goes after him on a substantive issue, for calling the fiscal imbalance a myth. Harper, in his ad, is outlining that his government accomplished something in the short time it was in power. In fact, the real message in those ads targets the Bloc.

The citations ad In French sends the message that if you are unhappy with the Liberals, vote Conservative, because they get things done. The ad is loaded with Quebec newspapers hailing the end of the fiscal imbalance problem. They paint Dion as the “man in Ottawa saying no”, just like he was for so long under Jean Chretien. The Tories in Quebec will never mention Dion’s time as environment minister…interesting…

Second ad

“In 2007, do we really prefer a politician like Stephen Harper, who spends his time denigrating his opponent, or a passionate man like Stephane Dion, who is concerning himself with the challenges of the 21st century? Which one is making us take a step backward?”

Did we just witness the same election in Quebec as Stephane Dion? I think the message Quebecers sent is that they want to get rid of the federalist/sovereigntist debate, not elect the poster boy for one of the sides, nor the poster boy (Gilles Duceppe) for the other…

Third ad

“If Stephen Harper and the Conservatives attack Stephane Dion, is it because they are afraid of something? Afraid of his ideas maybe? Afraid of his Green Plan? Afraid…to lose power?”

I guess my response to this ad is

“If Stephane Dion and the Liberals are attacking Stephen Harper, is it because they are afraid of something? Afraid that Harper has delivered on his promise to Quebec to fix the fiscal imbalance? Afraid that Harper delivered on UNESCO? Afraid that Harper affirmed the status of Quebec as a nation within Canada? Afraid…to stay out of power?

Jean Lafleur Gets Back to Montreal as Election Looms

My best guess is that Lafleur wanted to turn himself in before the Tories get “really tough on crime.”

Moral of the Story: If you are a fugitive from the law, come back and plead guilty now, before Stephen Harper's judges get a hold of you...

April 4, 2007

The Real Rock of the Quebec Liberal Party Calls it a Career

We all suspected this to be the case a few months ago, but it was finally confirmed today that Lucienne Robillard will not run again in the next federal election. A mainstay on the Quebec political scene since the late 80s, Mme. Robillard has been a force behind the scenes in the Bourassa, Chretien, and Martin governments. Her experience and wisdom taught us many things. Her unshakable calmness gave us comfort, even when times were dire. Most of all, her sense of humor (oh, she had one) always left us smiling.

First Liza and now Lucienne, Quebec Liberals have lost two major forces in the party, and given that most of the other Cabinet members from Quebec are also gone, many of us are left wondering who will step in to fill the void. (Are Robillard and Frulla really letting the way for…Justin Trudeau?...shudder)

But none of that…

Today is a day for celebration of a great political career.

Merci beaucoup Lucienne, si vos successeurs sont aussi sage comme vous, je me considérai chanceux.

It Could be Worse: We Could have Sent Cherniak

Michael at Pierre Trudeau is my Homeboy says it so well, I find no need to add...

(I am copy + pasting)

Another Embarassment (What a Surprise)

I am sick and utterly disgusted about the fact that these very important memorials in Europe continue to be politicized. I think it is disgraceful that anyone is trying to play politics with these very important events where we will recognize those who fought and gave the ultimate sacrifice. However, while I am upset overall, I am particularly upset with how Stéphane Dion is handling the entire issue.

It does not matter whether or not Stephen Harper made the invitation late with political considerations in mind. I believe that such an action in and of itself hurts his image as a statesman and the media has reported the fact that invitations to the opposition were given very late. None of the leaders needed to say anything; let the news report speak for itself. However, the leaders, including Dion have used this to attack the Prime Minister and now indicate that due to the late invitation, they are unable to attend. I would love to know what exactly Dion is doing this weekend that is more important than attending this ceremony. Harper looked bad for his actions but as far as I am concerned, arguing that schedules can't be re-arranged so that Dion can attend makes him look worse. He should have done the right thing and quietly gone to France. This is, after all, about the veterans and their sacrifices and not about politics.

We don't need Harper to attack us in order to look bad; we do a good job of it ourselves.

April 3, 2007

Harper is “Sold As Is”

Ugh! Un-Hiatus for 5 minutes

Yes Ted.

That is what Quebecers in the regions think of him…and they like it!

Harper will get votes there because he is seen as a man who delivered on his promises and is a straight-shooter. (ugh George W. politics actually works)

Remember when Jack Layton accused Paul Martin of killing homeless people?

Or when Stephen Harper accused Paul Martin of supporting Child Porn?

When you stretched their argument, you could see why they could level such an attack at Paul Martin. But, it was ridiculous, and many people, including myself, called them out on it.

Now an ad describing an old house called the “Liberal Party” is for sale. It is a mock info-mercial and the product says “vendu tel quel” or sold as is. Vendu in French also means sellout, and having been called it several times, I know it can be rather insulting.


Time to call the WAAAAAAAAAAHM-bulance.

So who figures out this ridiculous super double entendre TWO MONTHS LATER? Is it the French media? Any francophone at all? No It’s Super Coyne and his band of merry men.

Give me a break. Go after Harper for what he has done wrong. Changing social programs while cutting their funding is worth attacking, not a wishy-washy double entendre two months later…

Liberal ads are not any better.

Remember threatening the imposition of Martial Law?

How about when we shot people?!?

Are the Liberal bloggers becoming the Tory hacks we so joyously made fun of when they were bored of being in opposition?

Cherniak Sideshow Aims to Go Toe to Toe with Harper

I am on hiatus writing papers...

blogging on hold...

In the meantime...Liblog Gong-Showery continues

proof Jason Cherniak needs somebody at Liblogs who can write a Press Release.

Also, how many people received this and a) didnt bother reading it...or b) actually thought this was a press release.

I guess the media will realize it didnt come from the Liberal Party of Canada after all.


Website with Liberal videos expanding fast

Harper’s Conservatives won’t know what hit them

Toronto, April 3, 2007 – Yesterday, the Harper Conservatives opened their new campaign headquarters. It is 17,000 square feet and so expensive to maintain that the Tories will not even discuss the cost. Meanwhile, Liberal bloggers who make videos for free on their home computers are fighting back. Since last week’s launch of a website to display home-made Liberal videos (http://liblogs.ca/news.en.cgi?10), Liberal bloggers have been creating more than one video a day.

“The Liberal Party might not have enough money to spend on pre-election advertising, but that won’t stop Liberal bloggers from fighting back,” explained Jason Cherniak, president of Liblogs. “We have been doing what we can to support Stéphane Dion online and this Liblogs video page is only our most recent step.”

Liblogs is the operating name of a non-profit corporation, Blogger Support Services. For over a year, it has been hosting a list of Liberal bloggers at http://liblogs.ca, where Canadians can scan the headlines of the posts of over 250 Liberal bloggers at any time, on any day.

“This new video page is in addition to our main blog service and Liblogs News, which highlights a selection of some of the best Liberal Blog posts once a day,” said Mr. Cherniak. “Liblogs videos will allow Liberals from across the country to use their creative talents and express their support for the Liberal Party in the most modern manner available. It is great to see that it has taken off so quickly.”

All media inquiries should be directed to:

Jason Cherniak
President, Liblogs