Author: Kate

Sgroed, Blewed and Tattooed

It’s not just “exotic dancers” getting the fast track.
CTV news;

The RCMP has charged five people, among them an Immigration Canada official, with corruption and fraud after several morning raids in Ottawa Thursday morning.
The RCMP are alleging the group received up to $25,000 in fees from at least a dozen Arab immigrants seeking permanent resident status.
The arrests are the culmination of an investigation that began in January. There will likely be more arrests, the RCMP said.
RCMP Cpl. Nathalie Deschenes told CJOH’s Anna-Karina Tabunar that the suspects were allegedly approaching immigrants and promising that their applications would be fast-tracked for fees ranging from $4,000 to $25,000.
One of the five suspects is the 34-year-old operations manager at the Ottawa branch of Citizenship and Immigration.
These arrests will likely sharpen the focus on Immigration Minister Judy Sgro, whose resignation opposition critics have been demanding in recent weeks.
She is currently the subject of an investigation by the federal ethics commissioner, prompted by allegations she received an improper election donation.
Critics have also lambasted Sgro for her office’s decision to extend a residence permit to a Romanian stripper who worked on her re-election campaign; and over Ottawa’s controversial program to allow foreign strippers to get special work visas.

When the stripper story broke, my first reaction was that Sgro’s department has been infiltrated by someone with associations to organized crime. The connections to the sex trade are too well known and too obvious for even the dimmest beaurocrat to feign ignorance. In this case, it appears the corruption was well established and well supported. That tells us it’s been in place for a long time.

Tools Of Misrepresentation

Thomas Lifson at the American Thinker, covers a topic that’s been sticking in my craw for a while now – the hijacking of the word “progressive” to repackage failed and/or subversive leftist ideologies.

Buried in the term “progressive” (as the left uses it) is the assumption that history is moving inexorably, even if by fits and starts, in a certain direction, one that is understandable to those who possess the secret decoder ring. This is why government is so necessary. It alone can bring order to the chaos and messiness which individuals, left to their own devices, impose on their masters, and on the intellectuals who see so clearly what the rest of us cannot perceive.

Marrying My Sister

Back in February I wrote the following on the topic of same-sex marriage;

I have not found an argument to support the extension of legal marriage to include same-sex couples that I could not use in equal measure to demand the right to marry my sister.
Being of the same gender, society’s interest in the health of potential offspring is nullified – though it can also be argued that removing the ability to procreate as a defining property of marriage opens the door pretty wide. I don’t know how you can arbitrarily set aside something as fundamental as procreation to broaden the definition of marriage to include homosexual relationships, but stick it back in to narrow that same definition to exclude incestuous ones.
If it is discriminatory to deny persons the right to legally marry on the basis of same-sex orientation (be it choice or chance), is it not equally discriminatory to deny persons the right to marry on the basis of sexual ambivilance? Being homosexual or heterosexual is not a product of having sex with a person of the same or opposite gender, or having sex at all! Celibacy, whether voluntary or involuntary, does not affect orientation.
This is not a frivolous suggestion. It’s not uncommon for siblings to live their entire adult lives together, to share incomes, property, to support, comfort, care for, love and commit to each other. Why should such a couple be denied the societal benefits afforded to other such couples – pension benefits, spousal deductions. That they may or may not be having sex is no one’s business but their own.

Today, Colby Cosh points out that Alberta is proposing new legislation that accomplishes just that.

Alberta: enemy of “traditional marriage”? In today’s National Post I assess an odd claim made earlier this week by Premier Ralph Klein that Canada’s stubborn right-wing province has “probably the most advanced and forward-thinking legislation in the country as it affects gays and lesbians”. Hey, even I can only be so contrarian–the statement is a clear exaggeration if you take “advanced and forward-thinking” in its typical formal meaning (“liberals like it”). But there’s a little-known fact here, squatting in the background of the national gay-marriage debate: Alberta’s mysteriously obscure new law creating civil- union-type arrangements is, in one important respect, more radical than proposed federal law–it extends access to “spousal” benefits to non-conjugal life partners, including unmarried relatives living together. Same-sex activists actually dislike this because it’s too inclusive–its effect is to lump them in with single people in platonic cohabitation. In that sense, they’re serving as defenders of “traditional marriage”, amended so as to cover them, against the country’s broadest regime of practical access to spousal privileges. You can find the details on page A21 of today’s paper.

Good on Ralphie. Serve up the “inclusiveness” they’ve been clamouring for and then stand back and watch the demands for exclusivity roll out.
Nobody does hypocrisy like the left.

Launch Failed?

Against the backdrop of Paul Martin squelching hope in the cattle industry, the MSM has been reporting a “failed” test of the missile defense shield. From Powerline this background information;

The Reuters report by Jim Wolf of a failed missile defense test last night is flawed by either intent or ignorance.

The first test in nearly two years of a multibillion-dollar U.S. anti-missile shield failed on Wednesday when the interceptor missile shut down as it prepared to launch in the central Pacific, the Pentagon said.

The interceptor missile did not shut down because of some malfunction, it was shut down intentionally because of inability to monitor performance of a boost stage rocket detected during pre-launch system checks. The boost stage might have been set to work properly or it might not have, but a test of this magnitude and expense demands ability to monitor all mission critical systems so that all necessary data is available for post-mission review. When it became clear that this would not be the case, the mission was scrubbed, not failed.
The MSM will continue to denounce missile defense as impossible–I think they’ve given up on the argument that it would be “destabilizing”–right up to the moment when it is successfully deployed.

That’s the usual pattern.

Embrace Hollywood

“Democrats need to embrace Hollywood because this is where they need to come to learn how to tell a story.” – Michael Moore*

I recognize your face
Standing in precisely the same place
Mouthing the same hypocrisy
About preserving democracy
And keeping the people safe.
So four million killed in Korea and
Two million more in the Vietnam war
We feel so secure
Let’s keep our bloodlines pure.
I recognize your face
And I recall your name,
Your daddy killed for oil
And you did the same,
Then you used my country’s flag
To wipe your greasy hands
Wrapped in stars and stripes you dropped
Million dollar bombs on distant lands.
Now we feel so secure
Let’s keep our bloodlines pure.
I have often wondered how
Hitler played his game
Attacking other nations but always in the name
Of security,
eradicating evil and impurity
Fear is the greatest fascist tool,
The bigger the lie the more people you fool.
But how did Hitler hypnotize a nation?
Like the moral back bone of a population
Took an untimely vacation…
The answer is simple, though still an awful shock
Hitler had his Goering
You have clear channel and Murdoch
And all the moral Lepers
Who white wash mass murder for oil
are every bit as responsible
For the blood spilled on their soil
Maybe if you looked you’d recognize our face
Standing in precisely the same place where Jesus stood
with Gandhi and Martin Luther King
Lifting our voices above the den of your drums we sing:
“From your corporate grip we shall be released
How long? Not long!
We are the people united and strong
And all of us want peace,
All of us want peace!”
Woody Harrelson

Reader Tips

I spent much of the day in the paint booth, working hard on a headache – due more to ingestion of chocolates and Christmas cookies than inhalation of solvents. Not a lot of energy for blogging, so I’ll pass along these reader tips.
A round up of links on the Spirit of America tour featuring Iraqi bloggers Mohammed and Omar Fadhil. Lots of new stuff.
Toronto Sun;

A VETERAN Toronto cop blasted Canada’s immigration system yesterday after the weekend arrest of a twice-deported career criminal. “To me, the fact this guy should have been deported from this country a long time ago says a lot,” Det.-Sgt. Wilf Townley said. “This isn’t the only (case). There’s lots of other ones.
“They should be getting rid of these people. How does somebody get out on a bond who’s committed 27 criminal offences in this country?

Rand: “Ways to Cut Support for Radical Islam and Terrorism”. Charles MacDonald notes, “As always, the problem will be telling the moderates from the closet suicide bombers.”
A laundry list of geopolitical predictions from the Washington Times.

This, of course, is the sad situation in which we now live. A huge majority of Americans and our legislators believe that the federal government may legislate on any topic, at any time, for any reason, period — so long as the legislation does not offend the Bill of Rights. We used to have all the rights contained in the Bill of Rights, plus untold scores of others. Now, as the framers predicted, we have only those rights contained in the Bill of Rights. This is a disaster, not a blessing.

In Canada, it was the intent.
While Chretien fiddled, subs rusted. “Total bullshit news. Total bullshit.” cries the forlorn vestigial twin. He’s also been asked by the Post to write “1,000 words on Chr�tien’s amazing legacy. “ None of them “sponsorship”, as it turns out.
Thanks to Charles Macdonald, Craig Bett, King Richard the Rednec, and others.

Parody Under Threat

Global warming is threatening the future of parody.

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) – Severe weather caused by global warming can pose greater physical danger to women than men, a Canadian attending a UN conference on climate change said Friday.
“For instance, often women don’t know how to swim, so in a flood situation that can lead to a higher instance of death or injury,” Angie Daze, a program manager with a Canadian group called Reducing Vulnerability to Climate Change, said.

Angie Daze? Figures.
Via Craig Brett.

Ignoring China

Mark Helprin in the WSJ;

The short unhappy life of whatever passed for unipolarity is emphatically over not merely because the strategy of the moment has allowed a small force of primitive insurgents in Iraq to occupy a large proportion of American military energy, but because China is now powerful and influential enough, at least as a “fleet-in- being,” to make American world dominance inconceivable. And in the longer term, China is bent upon and will achieve gross military and economic parity with the United States.

Just so you can say you saw it coming.

Live Blogging Gary Bettman

Breaking News from the NHL… Gary Bettman is now speaking about the status of the negotiations between the owners and NHL players association:

“Blah blah blah blah. Blah blah blah blah blahblah blah blah blah blah, blablah blah blah blah blah. Blahblah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah. Blahblah, blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah – bblah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah .”
“Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah blah blah. Blah blah.”

Bob Goodenow. NHLPA Executive Director responds;

“Beak beak beak beakbeak. Beak beak beak beak beak beak, “Blah blah blah blah”. Beak beak beak, beak beak beak beak beak beak beak beak, beakbeak beak beak beak – beak beak! Beak beak beakbeak beak beak beak beak beak. Beakbeak. “


Cooling The Planet, One Person At A Time

Climate Control Bureau senior policy adviser and Environment Canada spokesman Burns Coutts*(link now dead) gets a 5 year jumpstart on the One-Tonne Challenge.
*Dorothy Halton [,,,] was found strangled to death in her condo. She was an emergency room physician who was described by her friends and family as compassionate, energetic and talented. Her ex-boyfriend, Burns Coutts, a senior policy advisor with Environment Canada, was charged with first-degree murder. (December 2004)
Hat tip – Kevin Jaeger

Reader Tips

Canada is becoming a preferred route for the loose security travel industry
Rachel Ehrenfeld in National Review – “Had the U.S not gone ahead with its plan to liberate Iraq, we would have never discovered the extent of the corruption in the U.N.’s Oil-for-Food program. But while Oil-for-Food is the biggest, scope-wise, of any known corruption in an international organization, it is merely the culmination of years of corrupt U.N. practices.”
Juan Cole, Professor of History, Middle East Commentator, Idiot.
Craig Brett looks at a bit of disingenuous poll spin by the Canadian media on the success of the Bush visit. Say it isn’t so!

Embrace Hollywood

“Democrats need to embrace Hollywood because this is where they need to come to learn how to tell a story.” – Michael Moore*

“Republicans know that there is a massive population of people who are too stupid to vote, and that no one in their right mind would necessarily want them for their constituency anyway, except perhaps David Duke. However, these are hard times for the GOP, and they cannot afford to be choosy when it comes to registered voters. Republicans know that they may not be able to sway anyone with their ideas on domestic and foreign policy, or their views on the economy, but they do know that hatred and bigotry are great motivators. They get the ear of the leaders of these so called ‘family groups’ and Christian media watchdogs and warn them of the impending storm of gay ‘legitimization’ and they get them all riled up by telling them that gays are going to get married and move into their neighborhoods. As if a newly married gay couple would ever choose to live in a trailer park. They pump up these Bible thumping, cousin humping genetic mistakes with hot air and propaganda which sends them into a mullet fantasia of pink trianglesand rainbow flags, and convinces them that their tax dollars will be used to foot the bill for Elton John and George Michael’s wedding.
Hatred is a powerful motivator, and these Christian soldiers will march onward, fighting tooth and nail for the theoretical hand in marriage, to protect marriage. “You’ll get this bouquet when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers.” Although the Republican party doesn’t openly endorse prejudice, if it results in more votes, then no one is complaining. It really is genius, harnessing hatred in order to further your own political party. We wish that democrats would have thought of it first, but even if they had, the plan to introduce prejudice as an enlistment strategy doesn’t work with the ethical ideals of the party. Compassion really does block the way to power.
What is deeply distressing is the incredible numbers of people who are vehemently opposed to equality, and the need for them to deny equal rights to others simply because they cannot bear the thought of equality. It isn’t like anyone who is against marriage equality would be directly affected by the existence of it. Not unless they were part of the wedding industry, and then they could reserve the right to refuse service anyway. More likely, they would welcome the extra revenue. Gay marriage would create a huge boon, and it is doubtful anyone would turn away cold hard cash. Greed remarkably has no bias. This is evidenced in the way that Republicans will pander to this creepy Christ crowd and allow the asinine, the atrociously unfit and the morally repugnant to swell their ranks because it means more for them, and more is where it is at if you are a Republican. — Margaret Cho, comedian.

A World Away, Con’t

Roger Simon hosted Mohammed and Omar of Iraq The Model last evening.

… I think I can speak for the others present when I say both brothers exuded a unique combination of calm, warmth and intelligence. They are also deep lovers of freedom in a way it is difficult to be for those of us who grow up with it. If many Iraqis are like these two young Baghdad dentists, I am quite anxious to go to Iraq.
I was relieved by what they were like on a deeper level as well. They don’t know this, but on the darkest days of the war, at the times the media were at their gloomiest and I was racked with guilt that I had so adamantly supported our actions, I almost always turned first to them. I didn’t look to them for unbiased opinions. There is no such thing. I looked to them to see how real Iraqis were reacting to a situation that affected them more directly than it could ever affect me or the prognosticators of doom in our media. They were the ones who bucked me up-not the other way around, as it should be. In a certain sense they helped my sanity. And I suspect I am not alone in that. Few writers in or out of the blogosphere can say as much.
After we ate and imbibed, Mohammed and Omar fielded our questions and told amusing anecdotes about their visit here, including to the White House. (Bush evidently joked about having his teeth examined.) Mickey Kaus asked if Sunnis would participate in the election. Omar and Mohammed, who are Sunnis themselves, said that many would, that the impression we get of the Sunni Triangle is skewed by reporting. I hope they’re right. These people are incredibly courageous. When you meet them it’s hard to understand why some of us could be rooting against them, but the not-so-sub subtext of many of the war’s opponents is just that. You see, they keep saying, look how bad it is-it’s our fault. I wish they could talk to Mohammed and Omar. I think even the Michael Moores of the world would have trouble saying it to them face-to- face. These men are the hope of democracy. I hope some day to meet their brother Ali… in Baghdad.

Previous post here. Go read brother Ali’s comments from Baghdad as well.

Condition Of Anonymity

Incessant Rant;

This is what happens when you search GOOGLE using the phrase “condition of anonymity” and a desired publication (and a few blogs). What does it mean? Probably nothing. I just found it interesting that the two most left leaning print media publications out pace their nearest competition by an average of about 500%.

Surely a coincidence.

2004 Weblog Awards – Final Tally

The full results are now up.
Major categories:
Best Overall – Powerline
Best New (Est.2004) – Kerry Spot
Best Group Blog – Volokh Conspiracy
Best Humor – Scrappleface
Best Liberal Blog – Matthew Yglesias
Best Conservative Blog – Captain’s Quarters
Best Media/Journalist Blog – Best Of The Web
Best Military Blog – Blackfive
Best Essayist – Victor Davis Hansen
Best Canadian Blog – small dead animals
Best UK Blog – Belgravia Dispatch
Best European (Non UK) – Dissident Frogman
Best Middle East /Africa – Iraq The Model
I wish to thank The Academy, the accounting company of Aylward & Associates and most of all my readers! It’s a pretty nice birthday present.
Update – Indispensible hints on building a “winning” blog. A must read.

Axis Of Appeasals

Canada’s Strategy To Combat Terrorism : “Be proactive. Do not wait for threat to emerge. Announce preemptive surrender.”

Iraqis living in Canada and Germany face problems in taking part in next month’s elections because the two countries are worried that polling centres might be attacked, Iraq’s electoral commission said.

The Axis Of Appeasals.

The Canadian government told the IOM that “for security reasons it could not hold foreign elections on its territory”, Ayar said in a statement.
This could lead to a deal on voting arrangements for the country’s 36,000 Iraqis, most of whom live in or near Toronto, being delayed or even scuppered, he said.

Huh. Wasn’t that easy? If only we’d know about this “scupper Toronto votes” thing in time for the last federal election.
Then again, there aren’t any Libranos on the IOM ballots.