Friday, August 31, 2007

It's the money, Stupid!

Why polygamy will never likely be legalized: Vancouver Sun - Legalizing polygamy shapes up as societal nightmare.

So we will just stick our heads in the sand, and hope it goes away.

But what about decriminalization?

And we'll blow your house down!

Ah, the joys of Liberal-watching and you don't even need a pair of binoculars.

Over here we have a rather quaint one who seems to be the dominant male, and likes to huff and puff. He has also been know to use phrases like "shilly-shallying".

And here we have another alpha male who is a rival for the leadership crown, and enjoys waxing eloquent on Puffins themselves, and how they hide their excrement. A noble mascot for their tribe.

Now there is a crew you can take seriously.

Watch out PM Stephen Harper. You are in big trouble.

* * * *

Update: Christian Conservative has kindly developed a logo for the LPC. What a nice guy!

* * * *
Saturday Update: Ivison - With a fistful of power. Read it and weep, Puff Party!!!

Globe - Dion's impetuous demand for a vote.

Hypocrisy, thy name is Liberal

Christiana Blizzard does a find job pointing out the weakness of the Liberal position on Faith-Based funding - "Ah, Sweet Hypocrisy" (H/T National Newswatch)

Ontario Finance Minister Greg Sorbara in particular is the focus of scrutiny:

If, as Finance Minister Greg Sorbara did yesterday, one is going to slam funding for private religious schools because they are divisive and separate kids from one another, it is useful if you can show yourself as a public school supporter.

Sadly, Sorbara cannot. His six kids went to the exclusive Toronto Waldorf school -- not a faith-based school, sure, but not exactly the kind of place where your kids mix and mingle with children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

When Blizzard calls him up on it, Sorbara attempts to duck the question (not unlike the obfuscation you see in Question Period), and then he throws in this zinger:

We will see kids from any number of different religions spending all of their time with people of their own faith and I think defining that as our future is very dangerous."

Blizzard muses:

Let me get this right: Rich people like Sorbara can put their kids in posh private schools without dangerously setting them apart from public school kids. And Catholics can put their kids in fully-funded religious schools without the world coming to an end. But low-income people and non-Catholics are -- what? Too stupid? Too poor to put their kids in private religious schools without it being a problem? Sounds very elitist to me.

In any case, it appears that Greg Sorbara and his cronies are still bent on snubbing the Jewish community.

Big mistake, Greg.

Protecting the innocent - Reposted with disturbing update

(Update follows original post.)

Excellent op-ed by guest columnist James Morton in today's Sun (Our broken bail system). It's definitely worth the read.

Our courts are clogged, and people who are still a danger to society are released on bail. Reforms are in the works, but action is needed now:

So what's the solution? Directions to Crowns requiring real bail terms and appointment of enough Justices of the Peace to make sure bail is dealt with thoroughly and quickly are happening at the provincial level. Federally, we need to expedite the approval of bail reform which has stalled in Parliament. Sensible changes to the Bill have been suggested, but the basic terms of the reform are sound and should not be delayed. Both the province and the federal government are working to increase legal aid so people accused of crimes get to present their cases properly.

Our patience is wearing thin.

* * * *
Update: N.S. Premier wants teens gone wild corralled.

* * * *

Friday Update
: Sentence Angers Victims Families - Warning! Very disturbing, graphic details. Read what the final sentence is and how the judge justifies it. This is disgusting.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Nanny McGuinty pushes province-wide pesticide ban

This is a topic that really hits close to home because last year our own Region put in a compromise ban on pesticides during the months of July and August only. Coupled with the lack of rain, this has had a devastating effect on people's lawns. Only lawn companies are allowed to apply pesticides during these months and then only in situations of extreme infestation and lots of signage. Many folks have simply given up rather than incur the extra cost.

I also read a few weeks ago that next year the Region may be sending out lawn police to check soil samples in lush lawns to make sure nobody is using pesticides during banned months.

Now Premier McGuinty wants to enact a province-wide ban on pesticides. In one way, it might be good to have a uniform law, rather than this patchwork of city and regional bylaws on the issue.

However, it does mean another ban on a product that Health Canada is still allowing for sale on the store shelves; just like tobacco.

So where do we draw the line between safety and a homeowners right to protect his investment?

There are some environmentalist dingbats in Waterloo who are still not satisfied with the partial ban. They prefer to see dirt and weeds in place of lawns, I guess.

A total ban would have a devastating effect on lawn care companies and their employees. As Richard Maas of Peerless Turfcare notes:

A total ban will destroy lawns and force residents to try to use pesticides on their own because they won't be able to hire a lawn-care company, he said.

"They're not going to stop people from using pesticides," he said. "They'll just kill our industry."

The regional ban has already cut into Maass's business this summer because large commercial clients who usually purchase extra lawn-care services on top of pesticide spraying are cancelling their contracts.

Maass said he's lost about 200 customers this year and as much as $40,000 in business.

"Companies are laying off people in the middle of summer when they should be busy or doing more hiring," he said. "But nobody is crying the blues about the loss of jobs in our industry."

Yet pesticides continue to be used on farms. According to a 2005 report by The College of Family Physicians of Ontario "many fruits, including peaches, apples, pears and grapes, were found to contain residues of pesticides". The Globe article states however, that "the ban the Liberal Party is contemplating would not apply to farmers."

Great. We can eat the stuff but we can't have it on our lawns.

This subject gets my blood boiling to the extent that I'm having trouble looking at it objectively.

Let's see, what's left to ban in Ontario now?

How about McGuinty?

One thing for sure - I was ambivalent about this election until now.

Dalton, this is the last straw - which is what my lawn is going to be if you get re-elected.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Dalton's 'Dear Friend' Decries funding position

John Tory certainly has Dalton McGuinty by the um, scruff of the neck!

How would you feel if your good friend and neighbour wrote an op-ed in the National Post begging you to reverse your stance on a key electoral issue on the principle of 'fairness and inclusivity'?

And that now that friend feels extremely offended?

Rabbi Reuven P. Bulka writes:

The Premier has said: "If you want the kind of Ontario where we invite children of different faiths to leave the publicly funded system and become sequestered and segregated in their own private schools, then they should vote for [Conservative Opposition leader John] Tory. If they think it's important that we continue to bring our kids together, so that they grow together and learn from one another, then you should vote for me."

I was stunned to hear this coming from the Premier. Most troubling is the suggestion that funding my faith's schools could lead to problems with social cohesion. The Premier that I know cannot argue that children who attend publicly funded Catholic schools contribute to social unrest. So why does he argue that other faith communities, who have thus far been denied the opportunity to participate in the public system, would be any less able to contribute to the peace and security, happiness and prosperity, justice and freedom that abide in Ontario, especially when their tax dollars help pay for the current system?

Then you're slammed with a statement from Bernie Farber, chief executive of the Canadian Jewish Congress:

Mr. Farber said yesterday he was floored to hear Mr. McGuinty attack faith-based schools as segregationist and harmful to Ontario's "social cohesion" last week.

Those comments represent a complete departure from Mr. McGuinty's earlier statements on the issue, Mr. Farber said.

It gets worse:

Not so long ago, Mr. McGuinty believed in much the same thing. In 1998 Mr. McGuinty met with Mr. Farber and 50 other executive members of the CJC and told them he was open to faith-based school funding. It was the first positive sign from a provincial leader on the issue since the group began campaigning for it in 1984.

"At the time that was a hugely significant statement," Mr. Farber said. "He stood up in front of the leadership of Ontario's Jewish community and said he was prepared to do it."

He went further in a 2001 published interview with the Ottawa Citizen.

"There's an issue of unfairness there that will have to be addressed," Mr. McGuinty said at the time. The future premier went on to say that "somewhere down the road" he planned on issuing some sort of tax credit for faith-based schools, albeit "with all kinds of strings attached."

So, it appears we have another broken promise to add to the already lengthy list.

Losing the support of the Jewish community in Ontario is gonna hurt.

What will Dalton do???

* * * *

Uh-oh! More bad news for Dalton - Faiths unite to back Tory plan to fund their schools.

In the Star!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Kinsella slams Tory's plan

It's not at all surprising that Warren Kinsella is not a big fan of John Tory's faith-based school funding plan. After all, he is working for the other guy.

However, this analogy intrigues me. Warren says in his August 26 post as a way of explanation for his objections to Tory's plan:

...My Dad, you see, was the guy who persuaded me to object to euthanasia, a subject about which he was considered an expert.

"Who will we get to carry out these state-sanctioned acts of euthanasia?" he would ask me. "Once it becomes legally permissible, will we then train people in medical school how to kill people? All of my students, I can tell you, went to medical school to save lives, not terminate them."

Mmmmm... What about the abortion doctors, Warren?

O.K. That was just a tangential question, but I still don't see how this relates to faith-based schooling, which as Sandy points out has already been going on quite successfully in an Ontario Mennonite school for the last 20 years!

Eden High School can be used as a model for province-wide implementation of the funding plan, if it is deemed to be workable and has public support.

And which faiths should be allowed to be publicly funded?

Here's a suggestion - How about the same ones that are allowed to have their clergy abstain from performing same-sex marriages? If that includes Yogic Flyers, so be it.

Final Decision re: MMP


That is what I will be voting - against MMP.


Just read who is supporting it here.

H/T Steve Janke who opened my eyes. A brilliant comment from one of his readers:

Reject MMP it's a scam to allow liberals to split the vote by running sycophant indi candidates and win the house through cooperative alignment after the election.

An insider sleaze paly if there ever was one.

If a Liberal is fogging a mirror they are actively plotting to scam you.

Posted by: WL Mackenzie Redux at August 28, 2007 09:10 AM

Great post here by Porno Christian - Proportional Representation: Invoking Godwin. (H/T to reader Brian in Calgary).

* * * *

Thursday Update: NO MMP!!!!

Great Canadian Debate - Holmstrom vs. Tribe on MMP

Dion - "I am a trustworthy person"

Lily-white Stephane Dion, the model of self-professed integrity, reiterates his plan to vote against the Throne Speech if a new session of Parliament is started in the fall (Election is possible, Dion warns).

This of course could force an election if the other two parties join him. If strict adherence to Kyoto becomes the pivotal issue, then I don't see how the NDP or Bloc could avoid this action and still maintain their own credibility.

Kaptain Kyoto assures us that we can trust him:

"I never broke my word in 11 years in politics," Mr. Dion said. "I am a trustworthy person ... I want to destroy the sense of cynicism that no politician will stick to his or her word. I always did it. I don't over-commit and when I'm committing, I will deliver. It's the message this whole caucus will carry."

Never mind that the previous (Liberal) government's record on greenhouse gas emissions under the stewardship of then Environment Minister Stephane Dion was abysmal.

As Dion continues his 'Yeah-but-you can-trust-me-now' tour, he assures Nova Scotia and Newfoundland that "he would respect offshore revenue deals with Nova Scotia and Newfoundland even though, as the New Democrats pointed out, he strongly opposed such agreements when he was a cabinet minister."

CNEWS reports that Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald is prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt (Dion forced to defend previous opposition to offshore deals for N.L. and N.S.) - H/T CBL.

Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams of course welcomes him with open arms since 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend'; whatever he may have said or done in the past.

Of course, Stephane Dion is not the only politician who said one thing in the past and then appeared to change course when it was deemed politically expedient.

Stephen Harper himself once called Kyoto a 'socialist scheme' before having his apparent climate change conversion (although the two are not necessarily mutually exclusive concepts).

But Stephane Dion is trying to paint himself as some kind of guileless pillar of integrity; a politician who would never break his word.

That is an oxymoron in politics, and anyone who believes otherwise is a fool.

* * * *
Related: Actually, Dion should get with the program. There could be a backlash developing, which is causing current thinking to be a bit more flexible with Kyoto targets and objectives. Check out Terence Corcoran's Cool Summits.

Could Stephen Harper have been right all along?

Monday, August 27, 2007

Bring it on indeed!

Still catching up on goings-on from the last little while, but I have to agree with Steve Janke - Stephane Dion has no choice but to try to bring down the government.

He must vote against the throne speech. However, the other two parties have to be on board as well. He will need to win over their support. Are they ready to go to the polls?

Both the Globe and the National Post seem to be tired of hearing Dion's whining and threats as well.

The Post says to "Bring it on". I agree.

Show us what you're made of, Stephane!

* * * *
Wednesday Update: Follow the leader by Licia Corbella.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Not really back but...

This caught my eye as I perused the local rag after a long time away:

Fretwell, who signs a new lease with the city next month, said she's already opened up the chapel to same-sex couples. But she will not perform the services.


In Cambridge, the weddings are always scheduled for Fridays in the council chambers. The individual who performs ceremonies there does not want to preside over same-sex unions, so gay and lesbian couples can bring in their own official for the ceremony.

Now how is this possible? I can't help thinking about Kevin Kisilowsky.

What's the difference?

A province?

* * * *

Related: Discrimination illegal; even for pastors, politicians.

Wednesday Letters to the editor:

I commend Scott Piatkowski for his work to have gay and lesbian weddings performed at Kitchener city hall. (Gay Unions Made Possible At City Chapel -- Aug. 24).

It's kind of ironic that an unelected person would be the one to finally begin to bring the folks at city hall out of the dark ages.

Much more needs to be done. It's not enough that gay and lesbian weddings be permitted at the city hall chapel. The operator of the chapel should be compelled to supply this service and perform these weddings regardless of their personal beliefs.

No person in Canada should be given a licence to perform weddings unless they agree to treat everyone equally, regardless of their sexual orientation. This includes clergy or anyone else. Hiding under the cloak of religious freedom should not be acceptable in an enlightened society.

Bobby Schroeder


Regarding the Aug. 24 article, Gay Unions Made Possible At City Chapel, I find it appalling that a chapel within the city hall would offer a contract renewal to a company which discriminates against a portion of society.

If a private company is going to have a government contract to offer services it should be mandatory that those services are offered equally to all. This chapel is in a government building our taxes helped build. No one stopped to ask if I was gay before taking my tax dollar.

"Allowing" gay couples to bring in their own officiate to conduct services implies we don't deserve the same services as everyone else, that we are different and are somehow not entitled to equal treatment.

Kathleen Reed


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Taking some time off

Once again, I'm going to take a break from posting for a while.

I find I need to do this on a regular basis; especially when my waking thoughts begin to turn exclusively to politics and blogging. That is just sick.

I may update the odd post if new information becomes relevant, but I'm sure that you will cope quite well without my rants.

* * * *
Something to ponder - World Wide Wasteland.

Dead blogs create web litter - H/T Liberal Supporter.

McGuinty's Albatross

While Dalton McGuinty is busy announcing how he plans to spend our money, a few items of concern are coming to light.

Well one tidbit is old news, but it has not yet been resolved. Christina Blizzard discusses the Colle-gate affair and the ensuing fallout, which she feels is still an issue ('Liberal handouts will backfire'):

Provincial auditor general Jim McCarter released a report on what's been dubbed "Colle-gate." He concluded that while there was "no evidence" that any organization received a grant because of political ties, the connections were there.

"However, in some cases those ties did exist and, when this is combined with a process lacking openness and most of the normal accountability controls, it can create the perception of favouritism if the organization ends up obtaining a grant," McCarter said in his report.

(. . . )

New Democratic critic Peter Kormos says that just because the auditor couldn't find evidence that political ties resulted in grants being handed out, that doesn't mean it didn't happen.

"To suggest that somehow it was an accident that some groups got money while another didn't is extremely naive," he added.

"He (McCarter) merely indicates that his investigation was unable to disclose those. That's why the question of the nature of the relationship between some of these organizations and the Liberals in government warrants further inquiry," Kormos said.

So Dalton's claim of exoneration rings pretty hollow.

Then there's the new development regarding a possible conflict of interest in the Ontario Power Authority.

For a supposedly squeaky-clean, transparent government, there sure is a reek emanating from Queen's Park.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Breaking boring news

Cabinet shuffle has taken place.

-Opposition and critics not impressed.

-Elizabeth May in particular is not happy.

As you were.

* * * *
Wednesday: Great piece in today's Post by Colby Cosh - Tories positioned for election march.

No-o-o-o-body's better than Mel!

Mel Lastman has a few suggestions for David Miller:

The 9 per cent salary increase councillors recently voted themselves has got to go, as does the $40 million overhaul of Nathan Phillips Square. Councillors' annual office budgets also need to be reduced.

"If you don't bleed yourself, how can you ask the people of Toronto to bleed?" Lastman said.

"You can't cut necessary services. That's stupid, completely stupid with four O's," Lastman said.

So, that would be 'Stoooopid', right Mel?

"They have to cut staff. They can't continue this way. Their budget has gone up by $1.5 billion since I left," he said. "Politicians have got to learn ... to say: `We can't afford it.'

Maybe voters should learn how to say no, too.

Lots more suggestions.

Straight talk from a brilliant businessman. Miller would do well to read the whole article and give Lastman's ideas serious consideration.

* * * *

Update: Great piece by Terence Corcoran - City kowtowing cause fiscal woe. Check out the stuff about union sick leave!!! You won't believe it.

No-0-0-0-BODy would!

Did Status of Women have it right all along?

At the risk of further type-casting myself as having a 'bizarre (and even creepy) obsession with polygamy', I would like to draw your attention to an article in today's Province by Alan Ferguson, Polygamists should have the same rights and freedoms as other people (H/T National Newswatch).

His premise appears to be that basically, the state has no business meddling in the bedrooms of its citizens as long as all other rights are respected. Actual abuses should be prosecuted separate from the polygamy issue.

He suggests that we should accept the status quo, because:

Oppal has also been advised to ask the courts to rule on the validity of the polygamy law. The risk here is that it might well be overturned, leading to profound changes affecting tax and immigration legislation.

Better to leave well enough alone. The state frequently does no better in the bedrooms of the nation than did the meddling priests of old.

But is that good enough? Should we keep a law on the books that is absolutely untenable and will never be enforced?

Why not decriminalize polygamy and thereby bring it out from under the cover of silence and secrecy into an environment where abuses against women and children will be easier to detect?

When I first heard about the Bailey report in early 2006, I was outraged. But now I'm thinking that perhaps Martha Bailey was just ahead of her time:

A new study for the federal Justice Department says Canada should get rid of its law banning polygamy, and change other legislation to help women and children living in such multiple-spouse relationships.

"Criminalization does not address the harms associated with valid foreign polygamous marriages and plural unions, in particular the harms to women," says the report, obtained by The Canadian Press under the Access to Information Act.

"The report therefore recommends that this provision be repealed."

The research paper is part of a controversial $150,000 polygamy project, launched a year ago and paid for by the Justice Department and Status of Women Canada.

The paper by three law professors at Queen's University in Kingston argues that Sec. 293 of the Criminal Code banning polygamy serves no useful purpose and in any case is rarely prosecuted.

Instead, Canadian laws should be changed to better accommodate the problems of women in polygamous marriages, providing them clearer spousal support and inheritance rights.

Currently, there's a hodgepodge of legislation across the provinces, some of whom — Ontario, for example — give limited recognition to foreign polygamous marriages for the purposes of spousal support. Some jurisdictions provide no relief at all.

Chief author Martha Bailey says criminalizing polygamy, typically a marriage involving one man and several wives, serves no good purpose and prosecutions could do damage to the women and children in such relationships.

"Why criminalize the behaviour?" she said in an interview. "We don't criminalize adultery.

"In light of the fact that we have a fairly permissive society . . . why are we singling out that particular form of behaviour for criminalization?"

Maybe I'm turning into a bleeding-heart Liberal. Yikes!

* * * *
Background: CTV, Status of Women report, Globe.

Toronto the Scary

It seems rather curious to me that a city that finds itself in a major financial crisis would continue to pander to the bleeding-heart lefties rather than face the grim reality that their misguided attitudes may very well hit them in the tourism column of their budget.

Today's National Post discusses the fatal stabbing of 32-year-old Toronto visitor Ross Hammond who was swarmed and attacked by four panhandlers when he had the audacity to refuse to give them their entitlements:

The death of Mr. Hammond is all the more tragic because the crime may well have been prevented if the City of Toronto had laws that clearly outlawed panhandlers, and directed police to keep city streets clear of anyone who harasses passers-by for money.

Instead, many of Toronto's city councillors seem more anxious about panhandlers' rights and feelings than those of their victims. (Councillor Howard Moscoe, for example, has declared that "people panhandling make us uncomfortable because they remind us of our failings.")

A City of Toronto document classifies panhandling as a "manifestation of poverty and need" instead of what it is -- an ugly, intimidating and sometimes violent nuisance.

According to the editorial, Vancouver is also afflicted with this 'myopic' attitude, and it is hurting business:

Convention contracts for hotels, some worth as much as $500,000, have been lost -- according to the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association -- because visitors don't believe Vancouver streets are safe. It's hard to blame folks for staying away: People won't visit a city if they are confronted by an army of deadbeats thrusting their hands out for coins.

I have no doubt that some cases of genuine need do exist in large cities, and they should be addressed.

However, tolerating panhandling is not just enabling a lifestyle of begging, but also putting citizens and tourists at risk.

Merchants in Toronto are now talking about a 'new breed' of panhandler:

"There was a time when panhandlers were homeless people who were asking for change. Now it's able-bodied young people who refuse to join the status quo and would rather bully you for change," said Marcus McLean, project co-ordinator for the West Queen West Business Improvement Area...

Toronto's response to increasing complaints about panhandlers is to do surveys - the classic left-wing solution to any annoying problem.

Perhaps when tourists start staying away in droves, Mayor Miller and his cheering section of ostriches will finally decide to remove the rose-coloured glasses and actually deal with the problem.

A Toronto Sun reader has no problem zeroing in on the hypocrisy of the politicians:

A young man was stabbed to death last week. A policeman was dragged to his death by thieves. Now a man is killed by pan-handlers, or in reality, armed robbers. Where is the outrage from Ontario Attorney General Michael Bryant? Why are there no photo ops with grieving families by David Miller? Mr. Bryant's idiotic slogan. "No Gun, No Funeral" is sounding kind of empty right now, isn't it?

Pat Proulx


Meanwhile another family prepares to bury a loved one; courtesy of Toronto the Good, while the city continues to ferment and rot.

* * * *

Related: BATB - Toronto, Clean up Your Act.

Mindelle Jacobs - Spare some change?

Interesting comments at this CTV link (H/T IndieScribe).

Wednesday Update: Globe - Accused panhandler has lengthy U.S. record.

And a totally predictable view from the Star here - Mistake to ban begging.

Again from the Star - Queen West an Area in Decline.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Just askin'

If you were a Young Liberal, would you be celebrating this photo?

I can't see anyone smiling. Not one child. Not even the MP.

Yeah, the local media ate it up alright.

Still on the fence on MMP

But Calgary Grit may have just pushed me over to the 'no' side.

* * * *

Update: 'Gauntlet' makes a great comment at CG's (3:07 PM):

Here's how I look at MMP - it's like patching a hole in a sinking ship with a poisonous goop.

You're solving one serious problem and giving yourself another one...
He then goes on to make some great points. This one gives me even more reason to stay on the 'No' side:

The serious problem with the existing system is the massive disproportionality of the results. MMP solves that problem more or less effectively. In exchange, though, you have to get a large number of individuals in legislative roles who were put there through internal party mechanisms that are not open to public participation and are lacking in transparency.
He says that's not democratic.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

On Multiculturalism, Solitudes, and 'Canadian Culture'

Interesting juxtaposition of viewpoints here between the Post's George Jonas and the Star's Haroon Siddiqui, who attended the same conference, but the impressions they take away with them couldn't be further apart.

This reminds me of what Penny said at Red Tory's:

We are once again developing Two Solitudes in this country, both of whom rattle on about freedom and democracy, but which are terms that have totally different meanings, depending on which pole one is sitting on.
(11:58 P.M.)

Very profound, isn't it?

Anyway, Jonas sees multiculturalism as a negative; keeping us apart and muddying whatever is left of our 'Canadian culture'.

Instead of a unique and unified Canada, multiculturalism has ended up promoting a xenolith: a fragmented patchwork of separate communities, each upset about the supposed privileges of the other segments, while viewing its own privileges as entitlements. Multiculturalism has perpetuated old solitudes within Canada, and created new ones. This may not have been anyone's intention; but it is the result.

Siddiqui, on the other hand, sees multiculturalism as a 'great success' and quotes quotes pollster Michael Adams who assures us that:

"Groups that live in ethnic enclaves are more economically successful than groups who do not live in ethnic enclaves. This was true for the Jews and the Italians and it is true for the Chinese and the South Asians today. This is a good sign, not a sign of disastrous balkanization."

I have a few thoughts on this, but am pressed for time at the moment. If anyone would care to start the debate, please feel free. Thanks.

Never question the Holy, Infallible Judiciary

Picking up where I left off the other day now with Lorrie Goldstein's Aug. 9 editorial - Gun Crime ? No Worries.

Lorrie has some suggestions for Michael Bryant rather than to simply wear buttons to combat gun crime:

I just wish they'd concentrate a lot more on stuff the Ontario government can do to fight gun crime, instead of always telling the feds what to do. (Either that, or run federally.)

Stuff like, say, assuring we have enough, modern provincial remand centres for people being held without bail pending trial for violent gun crimes, so judges don't keep giving them up to TRIPLE TIME for time served in custody prior to their conviction, to protest what the judges say are appalling, overcrowded conditions and lengthy trial delays.

This theme is revisited in today's editorial, It's the judges, stupid, not the laws. Lorrie suggests that we really don't need any new laws - We just need judges who are willing to give longer sentences:

The maximum sentences our Criminal Code provides for murder, manslaughter, rape, gun crimes, assault with a weapon and the sexual abuse of children are long enough.

The problem is judges rarely use them, and even then, the sentences they do hand down are eviscerated by parole.

Well, I can't totally agree here. I'd like to see the age of consent legislation become law. It has been passed by our democratic Parliament, but is currently being held up in the unelected, Liberal-dominated Senate. But I'll rant about that another day.

Goldstein argues that since judges are appointed by politicians, and since the Liberals who believe more in rehabilitation rather than societal protection have held the balance of power for the last several decades, therefore it is hardly surprising that we find ourselves the victims of a legal system today that is soft on crime. (That is my interpretation of what he is saying, but please read it for yourself).

Given that politicians ultimately decide who is appointed a judge, it's hardly surprising many judges, particularly those drawn from the ranks of defence lawyers -- who support soft sentencing and easy parole for obvious reasons -- have the same lenient views as our political class. Stating the problem is easy. Fixing it, hard.

Whenever Prime Minister Stephen Harper makes the obvious point that the system is soft on crime, hysteria erupts from senior judges, opposition politicians, liberal media, academics and prisoners' rights groups.

Wild allegations are made that the "independence" of the judiciary is under attack.

Of course, this is absurd. It's not judges who are under siege but the law-abiding majority, especially those living in crime-ridden communities.

Lorrie then explores John Tory's seemingly reasonable proposal to "gather information on such issues as how long it takes to bring cases to trial, the results of plea bargaining and the number of bail violations. Why? Because in order to fix something, you need to know how and where it's breaking down."

But Michael Bryant bristled at the idea:
...Bryant warned Tory's proposals would put unfair pressure on judges and crown attorneys, eroding their, you guessed it, independence.

Shouldn't citizens have access to this kind of information?

Of course, in the ideal Nanny State, we lemmings aren't supposed to ask questions. We meekly accept the decisions of far superior minds, and placidly vote them in again when told to do so.

If we are allowed to vote for them. In the case of judges, those brilliant politicians will take care of that too.

* * * *
Related: I wonder what Michael Bryant would say about this? I guess it doesn't count because a knife was used. Toronto... as violent as it gets.

Also related: #5 - Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin - 101 People who are screwing up Canada.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

The implications of 'family diversity'

From the Post - Criminal act or religious right?

To understand the moral and legal conundrum of polygamy in Canada, consider that when the Canadian Bar Association discusses the matter at its annual meeting next week, it will be part of a larger discussion about the "implications of family diversity."

The practice of having multiple spouses -- illegal for more than a century -- is being considered alongside serial monogamy, surrogacy arrangements and same-sex relationships as being among those societal changes "charting new legal territory for family relationships" being examined by a panel probing what it means when the law moves into the bedrooms of the nation.

"Family diversity". That pretty much includes everything, doesn't it?

Jason Gratl, a criminal lawyer and president of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, said it is important to distinguish between a moral disdain of polygamist marriage and a desire for a legal recourse to crimes sheltered "by the insular community structures and bonds of loyalty."

"It's tempting to point at polygamy as the determining factor which creates abuse," he said. "But one should resist that temptation in light of the fact that similar abuses occur in quite ordinary marriages. And no one is suggesting wiping out the institution of marriage because some of those marriages lead to insular family structures."

Absolutely. There are many marriages where one party is very controlling and manipulative. And child abuse can occur in any family situation.

And we're not just talking about polygamy in Bountiful:

Beverley Baines, a law professor at Queen's University, was coauthor of a report released last year that said Section 293 would likely fail a court challenge and called for polygamy to be decriminalized. (The report did not call for legalization, which she said would mean a change to the Marriage Act.)

She said if polygamy was no longer illegal, it could then be studied and really understood -- not just in the context of the goings on at Bountiful, but also how common the practice may be among Canada's many immigrants who may come from countries where polygamy is not unusual.

However, Katherine Young, a professor of religion at McGill University, believes the legalization of same-sex marriages has changed the rules.

"Once you start to change definitions there can be a whole set of repercussions," she said. "[Now] you're going to have to argue whether there's any substantial reason to restrict marriage to two people. The last argument was whether we have to restrict to two people of different sex, now we have to make an argument why it should be restricted to two. And now we have even weaker grounds for doing it."

But let's have none of that slippery slope argument!! Pull-eeze.

Irwin assured us that it would never happen:

Justice Minister Irwin Cotler had earlier denied there was any link between the two issues. "We don't see any connection – I repeat, any connection – between the issue of polygamy and the issue of same-sex marriage," he said Thursday.

Too late to turn back the tide people. Let's just cut the crap and admit it.

* * * *

Related: Obviously Queer Liberal would not agree with me, but he does reference a very interesting article in today's Globe by Margaret Somerville.

And Eric weighs in again here.

Koby gives his opinion here.

I am definitely outnumbered, but that's o.k. I love a good debate.

Warning - Graphic image of choice ahead

Does a truck truck plastered with images of aborted fetuses transgress the boundaries of free speech?

Calgary's Stephanie Gray, director of the Canadian Centre for Bio-ethical Reform (CCBR) drives a 'mobile anti-abortion billboard' around during rush hour to ensure that folks get the harsh picture of abortion devoid of euphemisms.

Celia Posyniak, executive director of Calgary's Kensington Clinic, an abortion provider, has heard from several people outraged over the truck:

"I just think in Canadian society, it's really a rude, crude display. It shows a lack of manners," Ms. Posyniak says. Such "scare tactics," she insists, don't work, since women seeking an abortion have "very compelling reasons" for doing so and will only be upset, not influenced, by the billboards.

Yes indeed. Very compelling reasons such as this.

As Michael Coren says so eloquently, "It's no longer a woman's right to choose but a woman's right to live."

Will $32,400 be enough to buy off Caledonia residents?

From the Hamilton Spectator: Native group protests new development.

...Meanwhile, the Ontario government announced yesterday it was investing in the town's business retention and expansion plan. Agriculture Minister Leona Dombrowsky said the province will contribute $32,400 to the plan, which is being overseen by Haldimand County, the local chamber of commerce, the Grand Erie Business Centre and the Business Improvement Area. The plan will explore economic growth options for the area.

"The information collected from this study will help our community assess and identify new opportunities for local businesses," Suzanne Athanasiou, a chamber director, said in a statement.

New business opportunities, eh? Like how to relocate?

Or maybe a cricket tournament?

One thing for sure - I wouldn't want to be canvassing for the Liberal party in Caledonia this fall!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Have no fear - Bryant's buttons are here!

Once again the Sun's Lorrie Goldstein hits the mark with his editorial - Gun Crime? No Worries.

In his crosshairs this time is Michael Bryant, who according to Goldstein, "is a master of the clever slogan, the brilliant riposte and the bon mot when it comes to fighting gun crime."

Lorrie reminds us that we are fortunate indeed to have Bryant for our Attorney General, because his clever slogans are such an effective tool against Toronto gang and gun crime.

However, Bryant has now added buttons to his arsenal!

Just last week, this up and coming Liberal cabinet minister revealed to the Toronto Star -- where trial balloons by Liberals go to die -- that he has made up some buttons featuring the brilliant phrase: "No Gun. No Funeral" and now carries them around in his pocket.

(Where trial balloons by Liberals go to die - Heh.)

He then goes on to explain that what Bryant really means is 'No LEGAL gun. No funeral'.

But that, of course, would be a stupid thing to put on a button, since it isn't true.

After all, Canada could ban all "legal" handguns today and people would still be shot and killed by thugs using illegal ones.

Lorrie makes several other very important points which I'll have to revisit another day.

Urgent family matters to attend to.

Live and let live?

Blog Quebecois links to a post by Werner Patels referencing the Bountiful polygamy conundrum.

While Patels urges that the related issues of statutory rape and pedophilia be prosecuted, he questions the ability of Canadian law and modern society to prevent arrangements of multiple partners who quietly choose to cohabitate.

This is a question that I continue to ask (not that I necessarily support the idea) - how can we say that some people should be allowed to live their lives without state interference and not others?

It's interesting to see a Progressive admitting that the slippery slope argument may in fact have some validity after all:

The case of the community of Bountiful, British Columbia, and its predilection for polygamy, is to be referred to the courts to determine the constitutionality of polygamy with respect to the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

When same-sex marriage was first raised as a possibility, social conservatives quickly condemned it and said that if it were green-lighted, it would soon lead to polygamy as well -- and turn Canada into Sodom and Gomorrah.

Now that this issue has raised its head, one cannot deny that they were right in a way. But would it really be so bad if polygamy were allowed?

Some of his arguments that appear to be in favour of decriminalizing polygamy and polyamory in general are reminiscent of the same-sex marriage rhetoric:

So many people in modern society today have multiple spouses -- they're divorced from all of them, but they often have children together, while support payments serve as sort of a bond. Frankly, it would not be such a giant leap to a system where they all lived happily under one roof.

- i.e. Perhaps it would be better for the children, because they wouldn't feel 'different' and would be more likely to be accepted by the mainstream.

Just as was true of same-sex marriage, it is highly doubtful that allowing polygamy would have any effect on the rest of us.

-Yup. As long as it doesn't affect me. I've heard that one before.

And from an Opinionated Lesbian's blog:

If you support the right of gay people to live their lives as they wish, you must support the same right for others. Like polygamists.

We can't turn back the clock. It is what it is.

But let's just stop kidding ourselves.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Two-tiered health care in Ontario

This morning on Newstalk 570, one of the discussion points was the question of whether or not PSA tests to detect prostate cancer should be covered in Ontario under OHIP, considering that annual mammograms are covered for women after a certain age.

Why one and not the other?

Jeff Allan made the point that the McGuinty government seems to have plenty of money to throw around for cricket, but we seem to be increasingly shortchanged in the area of health care.

If preventative medicine is so important, why aren't PSA tests covered? And why aren't eye exams too?

There was an excellent letter in the Record recently which pretty much says it all:

I have been reading a lot in the news about whether we should have a two-tiered medical system -- hello, it is already here! There is one system for women and one for men.

Why are annual Pap tests and mammograms for women covered under our current medical system and the PSA (prostate-specific antigen) blood tests to detect prostate cancer in men cost $30?

Today, I read that we are spending $83 million to vaccinate young girls for cervical cancer. What is not two-tiered about all this? Does anyone realize that prostate cancer is not an old man's disease anymore and it is becoming more prevalent in younger men and one in seven men will get prostate cancer?

Yes, it is a curable cancer but only if it is caught in an early stage. One of the best indicators is the PSA blood screening. Prostate cancer is fast becoming a silent killer of men. And also, the loss of breasts is devastating but how about what men can lose with removal of the prostate -- including their lives?

I know all this because I am a prostate cancer "victim" as was my father and grandfather. This was diagnosed by my annual PSA test as the anal exam did not indicate a problem. And guess what? Now that I am a "victim" as they classify me, my ongoing PSA test is covered if I go to the cancer clinic to have it done. We need to realize that this test needs to be covered under our medical program now.

Oh yes, my ongoing treatments for curing my cancer will be covered under our medical system and in my case I took the preventive measures. What about those who do not because of the cost? Let's level the playing field here. Annual PSA blood tests need to be covered under our medical system.

And guys: This is no longer your "father's disease." Discuss this on your annual visit with the doctor, get tested and pressure our government to make this important test covered under our medical program.

Tom Sutherland

Wasaga Beach

Are men being discriminated against in Ontario?

* * * *

Vision - Incompetent or racist? Update - Topic change

In today's Post - Vision TV once again the focus of controversy.

Gail Thomson, VisionTV's director of marketing and communication, said the channel screened Mr. Oktar's documentary prior to it being aired and found nothing offensive in its content.

A memo prepared by the individual who viewed the film describes it as a "Koranic interpretation of creation."

Ms. Thomson said the channel also did some research into Mr. Oktar's background, but that investigation did not uncover his views on the Holocaust.

"Had we known about his views, there would have been a different situation and a different decision made," Ms. Thomson said.

Better get moving on setting up that task force, guys.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Private health care - a matter of life and death

Front page story in the Record today - Desperate search for care.

Catherine Cooke of Walkerton was diagnosed with cancer, and basically told that there was little or no hope.

Instead of waiting for death she opted to spend an inheritance from her mother on private health care in India.

The treatment is now close to being complete and the cancer is almost "non-existent."

Something tells me this family will not be very impressed when Health Minister George Smitherman tries to sell them on another McGuinty government in October.

* * * *
Too bad Catherine Cooke wasn't just looking for cricket money.

Is polyamory legal in Canada?

Today's Star has reprinted an edited version of a recent Vancouver Sun editorial (Polygamy is not a freedom issue) which seems to be urging B.C.'s Child, Family and Community Services to remove the children of Bountiful from a perceived situation of harm and exploitation; even without a court order.

This seems a tad harsh, but I suppose if there were concrete evidence of abuse, then by all means, the authorities should intercede.

The opening paragraph of the editorial also refers to the Canadian Criminal Code:

Polygamy has been a crime in Canada since 1892. Under s. 293 of the Criminal Code any conjugal union with more than one person at the same time, whether or not it is a binding marriage, is an indictable offence with a penalty of up to five years in prison.

There's no ambiguity in s. 293. Polygamy is illegal, no ifs, ands or buts.

Under that definition, any 'conjugal union' of consisting of more than two people is illegal.

However, I wonder how many consensual living arrangements there are in Canada involving more than two persons? We are already told that Swingers' sex is legal by the Supreme Court. So is it only legal in clubs? What if the couples want to live together in a conjugal manner? So they have to go the the clubs to have sex?

So what we're talking about here is polyamory. I really don't think that law from 1892 is valid any longer. Society and morals have changed, I am always being told.

Supposing two bi-sexual women and a straight guy all love each other and want to live together, and possibly even have that recognized as a civil union?

How can we stop it?

On what legal grounds?

Monday, August 06, 2007

More on polygamy in Canada and U.S.

Interesting article at the Macleans website by Ken MacQueen - Is polygamy legal in Canada?

If polygamy is illegal, but nobody wants to prosecute it, is it really a crime?

This ties in quite nicely with my recent post stating that I feel it's only a matter of time before polygamy is in fact legalized.

According to MacQueen, Wally Oppal has still not decided exactly what his next step will be, in spite of a recommendation to seek "a court reference on the question of legality". He may still lay charges.

But it seems that while the Bountiful group is openly flaunting the law, there are some in Canada - even fundamentalist Christians - who practice it secretly:

Members of Bountiful are part of a breakaway sect of fundamentalist Mormons who do not recognize the mainstream church's decision more than a century ago to end the practice of polygamy. But the issue extends far beyond the borders of Bountiful. Many Muslims in Canada, as well as some fundamentalist Christians and others with no religious grounding, also quietly practice polygamy.

And speaking of Muslim polygamy, this is a fascinating article about the covert practice of polygamy in the U.S., with links to blogs of several "co-wives".

Nanny U. knows best

Lorrie Goldstein picks up on the arbitrary decision by the U. of T. to shut down the 88 year-old Hart House Rifle and Revolver Clubs - Putting a gun to their heads.

Goldstein calls the move, "political correctness run amok."

I concur. As I previously posted, there is no valid reason for U. of T. to make this decision other than that they are buying into the Bryant theme that GUNS ARE EVIL.

Criminals on the other hand, are just victims of poverty, and a basketball-court-less neighbourhood. They are not responsible for their actions and have no control when THE EVIL GUN is around to tempt them; even if it's locked up in someone else's house, and they have to break in to steal it.

I have no interest in guns myself, but I agree with Lorrie Goldstein that:

...a university guided by administrators who make such arbitrary and unfair decisions cannot be counted on as a bulwark against arbitrary and unfair decisions by governments and tyrannical majorities...

The Libertarians out there should be screaming.

But as usual, we good Canadians do what we are told. We reprogram our minds to reflect what the lefties tell us, because we are spineless lemmings.

* * * *

Related: Great column by George Jonas - Memo to U of T Financial donors. (H/T Candace and Jack's Newswatch). Enjoy!

Wednesday Update: Put sharp edge on knife justice (Sun)

Sunday, August 05, 2007

PPG Hissy Fit

CTV's Question Period was quite a snooze today, except that I did get a bit of a chuckle out of the self-obsessed Parliamentary Press Gallery and their total indignation at not being allowed to stay in the hotel lobby where the CPC was holding their caucus meeting in Charlottetown.

Anyway, before the link disappears, go to the CTV Politics site, and click on QP - "Journalists Panel on Conservative Tactics". And just who forms the panel? Well, we have Jane Taber, Jim Travers, Robert Fife and Craig Oliver. All the usual suspects.

No bias there, right?

Fife makes a reference to the use of the RCMP to clear ' half a dozen' (i.e. six) journalists from lobby and set them up in a media centre across the way, as something from 'Vladamir Putin's Russia'.

Travers agrees, saying it felt something like being in Russia before the wall came down...etc.

He talks about the "authoritarian", "controlling" character of the CPC that he doesn't think goes over well with "most Canadians".

Gee, I wonder where he got his statistics from.

And then we have Craig Oliver chiming in with a comment that over the years his view is that the Press Gallery is a reflection of public opinion!!!

"...And I can think of many governments that went down hard, and I think of Martin, I think of Mulroney, I think of Joe Clark who were also very unpopular with the press gallery by the time they were defeated and I think of governments that lasted a long time, like Trudeau and Chretien who a had relatively off and on, but a good relationship with the press."

So there you go, folks. If you want your party to have a long-lasting government in Canada, all you have to do is suck up to the PPG.

No need for democracy. No need for elections.

Canada only needs the Parliamentary Press Gallery.

It just goes on and on. Quite nauseating, but also quite an eye-opener.

* * * *

Related: Sheila Copps on the same subject:

...In a turf war between the prime minister and the media, there is only one winner. And it isn't Harper.

Good grief! They are so used to being coddled and thrown little tidbits that they just don't know how to do anything else but whine and complain when they don't get their way.

Maybe Jim Travers was right with one comment- "I mean, they (Canadians) don't care much about the conditions that we have to do our job in, but..."

You should have just stopped there, Jim.

* * * *
Oops! PPG busted here. It was the hotel! Not the RCMP. (H/T Jad)

How to negotiate with the Taliban

I hope Jack Layton is paying attention as these ground rules are being drawn up. Perhaps Mr. Layton could offer to assist in the negotiations.

Why aren't you volunteering to help out here, Jack?

Free Dominion is also asking the question, "Where's Jack?"

Well, let's give the guy the benefit of the doubt. Maybe he's on his way by bicycle.

Prentice to replace O'Connor?

This is a huge story, less so for the content as the fact that 'senior government insiders' divulged the details.

Was this a leak or a deliberate attempt to gauge public reaction?

And who will replace Prentice in the very volatile Indian Affairs Ministry?

Interesting times.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Michael Bryant - The 'Don Cherry of anti-gun'

From today's Star interview with Orillia sporting goods store owner Wes Winkel:

Gun enthusiasts say Bryant's argument is little more than a cop-out.

"You're not able to actually get the criminals, so you say we have to stop the legal people from owning them," Winkel said.

With the Oct. 10 provincial election quickly approaching, Winkel expects to hear a lot more about handgun bans but doesn't think it will go further than talk.

"With the risk of sounding a little arrogant, Mr. Michael Bryant has been spouting off for years and I've learned not to take him too seriously.

"He talks without thinking. I call him the Don Cherry of anti-gun.

Darn! I wish I had thought of that. Although it does Mr. Cherry a grave disservice.

* * * *

Related: Rex Murphy - U of T misses the mark.

It would seem that guns are no longer politically-correct.

Update - University gun club appeals closure.

But get this!!

On Monday, Rob Steiner, an assistant vice-president of the university, said the closure "is really a values issue. This is not a safety issue, as strictly defined. If there had been a safety issue, it would have been shut down right away."
Oh, I love the irony! The left is trying to teach us 'values'!!! Oh, o.k. I get it. If it's their values that's fine, as long as anyone on the right doesn't push values they don't like. Uh-huh.

* * * *
Nicol has a great post on this topic - Is Michael Bryant lying about gun stats?

This is awesome:

...Toronto it seems will be willing to have a lot more shootings before it can deal with this issue. Whether it is taxes, guns or gangs, Torontonians seem unwilling to accept any other solution other than the most facile of left wing pronouncments. Then they complain, elect another socialist politician and rinse, wash, repeat...

Friday, August 03, 2007

Will polygamy eventually be legal in Canada?

Today's National Post explores the difficulties of laying charges of polygamy under Section 293 of the Criminal Code.

The editorial suggests that we need some clarity on this issue, and does not seem to be optimistic that a polygamy charge could be upheld:

The people of Bountiful seem prepared to testify to polygamy's benefits, and in the event of a Supreme Court reference they will find allies in other cultures ranging from Saudis and Somalis to non-religious polyamory advocates. That could leave little friendly ground left for Section 293 to flee to, logically.

The Supreme Court has already reinvented Canadian marriage for the benefit of gays and lesbians, and given that polygamy is accepted across huge parts of the globe (and was practised personally by the prophet of a major worldwide religion), the Court would surely not like to get caught protecting a Western "tradition" in the name of a mere ethnic or quasi-religious prejudice.

So let's assume that one day, polygamy will be legal in Canada. Will those folks be pushing for another redefinition of "marriage"? And how will we handle the spousal benefits?

Anyone in family law would be dealing with complex issues in the event of a divorce. Child custody battles could be a nightmare.

Of course most of us agree that this is not a desirable situation, but how can we prevent it?

Personally, I think it is inevitable, and I challenge you to prove otherwise.

Anyone heard from Michael Bryant lately?

19-year-old Nadeem Jiwa has been arrested and charged with manslaughter in the death of Constable Rob Plunkett.

If the weapon had been a gun instead of a car, you can be sure that Ontario Attorney General Michael Bryant would have been very vocal in calling for a complete gun ban once again.

"No gun, no funeral" is his new favourite slogan.

Where are you, Michael Bryant? Why so quiet?

Does this not fit in with your political agenda?

* * * *

Related: Neo's found a couple of good links here. The Post has this bit of insight:

The white Honda Civic driven by one of the suspects is registered to Vishal Bilimora, of Ajax, Ont., who runs an auto body shop there. When contacted yesterday by the National Post, Mr. Bilimoria said Mr. Jiwa would occasionally borrow his car and that he had been in possession of it for the past week.

“He is a friend of mine and he wanted to borrow the car to go out one night and I told him ‘Go ahead.’ He would borrow the car from time to time. I had no idea what he was doing.”

Mr. Bilimoria said Mr. Jiwa had just finished high school. “From what I know of him, he’s a really nice guy, a jolly guy ... I was shocked to hear about all of this.

I don’t even know why anybody would take air bags. They’re not that
expensive to come across.

Indeed. Only about $1500 to $2000 if they are sold as 'new'.

* * * *
Saturday Update: I missed this great column by Michael Coren - End the Blather. Straight talk that Michael Bryant would not like.

Post - Charges could be upgraded.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

It's so easy being 'progressive'

In keeping with my "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em" theme, I am very pleased to see how difficult it is to actually prosecute polygamy in Canada. In fact, the law is virtually unenforceable.

The Nation has no business in anyone's bedroom, right?

Why not concentrate on something more important, like banning handguns again or something? Let people live their lives in peace. If young teenage girls want to have sex with older men, whose business is it anyway?

"There's no evidence of exploitation," Oppal said. "In fact, it was surprising to me the number of young women who told police that they were the aggressors, that they wanted to have sex with the older men."

Yes, and just remember - Religious freedom trumps everything - unless some bigger special interest group complains.

Oh, man. This is so much fun! I love being a leftie.

* * * *
Update: Interesting discussion here - BC Polygamy and Gay Marriage.

* * * *

Correction: The above-noted Star article contained a factual error. This was addressed in today's edition:

The age of consent for most sexual relations in Canada is 14, not 16, as erroneously reported in a Canadian Press article about a B.C. polygamous sect published Aug. 2.

Federal legislation to raise the age of consent to 16 is before the Senate.

This error was actually pointed out by yours truly. Unfortunately they didn't include the part I wrote about "unelected Liberal-dominated" Senate.

Ah, well. I tried.

Global warming is to blame for everything

Now I've seen it all.

I used to laugh at people who point to climate change as the cause for any weather event at all. However, now it seems that global warming is also responsible for excess copulation among some animals; especially felines.

According to the National Post, cats like it hot:

"Cats are now copulating in February, which is supposed to be a really cold month," Mr. Oliver said.

"But animals are getting out because it's relatively warm. Their internal signals seem to be telling them that it is time to mate because the warm weather's coming, and so we're seeing an earlier litter."

Apparently this is now causing an explosion in the cat population.

I have to ask a couple of questions here - Just how are those cats "getting out"? Do they open the door and sneak out when Master is having a snooze?

And why haven't the owners thought of 'fixing' the problem in a permanent fashion.

The article then goes on to cite other issues such as an increase in seal population due to the heat forcing female seals to search further afield for water, and straight into temptation.

But I thought seals were endangered? Didn't Paul McCartney and his ex try to tell us that? And what's wrong with more seals anyway?

Finally, we are told that there is a dearth of good quality prostitutes in Bulgaria because all the 'elite' ones have fled to the ski hills to help relieve the frustration of skiers who can't find any snow - all due to global warming.

You see what's happening here? We can now abdicate any responsibility for our actions and instead blame it on climate change.

This gun, officer? Well global warming is making me crazy, and I needed it to be able to get that Slushie. I couldn't work because of the heat. So I have no money, but it's not my fault... I can't sleep at night because of the heat. And they should have put some swimming pools in my neighbourhood anyway. I am a Global Warming victim!

This is your permanent "Get out of jail free" card.

* * * *

Friday Update: Neo - Break out the Tinfoil Hats.

Heat wave not global warming (H/T Bourque) Deniers!!!