Monday, December 31, 2007
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Author Ellen R. Sheeley has left a comment that is well worth the read:
Imam Shakir is being disingenuous and playing to the cultural/moral relativists, of which there seem to be plenty.
Aqsa Parvez's death was an "honor" killing, and "honor" killings will never be properly addressed if people aren't even willing to admit to what they are. They are a form of domestic violence, but a very specific form, with different roots, different triggers, different modus operandi, and different ways of preventing them...
I am planning to pick up this thread sometime in the near future, since these issues now appear to be affecting Canada.
Previous related articles:
-The deadly face of Muslim Extremism by Tarek Fatah and Farzana Hassan - Post
-Denial is sickening by Michael Coren- Sun.
-Islamic like me: Why the veil is a threat - Danielle Crittenden (Huffington Post)
-Horror under the hijab - Stephen Brown (Front Page Magazine)
-The failure of Western feminists to address Islamist Abuse - Adrian Morgan.
-The enemy isn't Islam. It's tribalism - Jonathan Kay.
-Whitewashing the murder of Aqsa Parvez . . . and remembering the murder of Tina Isa - Michelle Malkin.
Star - Imams deliver few words on Bhutto. (This report references the killing of Aqsa Parvez).
Tuesday Update - I think the only thing I want to add to this post is a short excerpt from 'Infidel' by Ayaan Hirsi Ali (where she references the political situation in Holland at the time):
"... I felt disappointed by the Labour Party. I had joined them originally because, in my mind, social democrats stood for reform. They sought to improve people's lives; they cared about suffering, which I thought should have meant they would care about the suffering of Muslim women. But in reality, the Labour Party in Holland appeared blinded by multiculturalism, overwhelmed by the imperative to be sensitive and respectful of immigrant culture, defending the moral relativists..."
Friday, December 28, 2007
..Since the NDP do not have much chance of taking power and the Tories don’t seem to really want it, perhaps we could just designate Dalton “Premier for Life”. And the money that would be saved from future elections could be used to change more logos and start a war against Big Macs and other fast foods...
I see this as one more example of John Tory stubbornly doing what he wants to do, rather than what is best for the party - and Ontario.
Personally, I am shocked and saddened by the murder of this very courageous woman, but I do find myself drawn to the question about whether or not true democracy is a viable and realistic goal in a country such as Pakistan.
This debate has been addressed by Jack's Newswatch, George Jonas and Peter Worthington among others.
How can democracy exist among the chaotic turbulence of such strong extremist factions within the country itself? Military rule may be the only path to temporary stability. Ironically, as Jonas pointed out, it was the pressure of the U.S. to end Musharraf's emergency measures that may have contributed directly or indirectly to Bhutto's assassination:
...Pressuring Pakistan to act out America's fascination with democracy is minimally naive. So is forcing Musharraf, who perches precariously at the edge of a precipice, to audition for a speaking part in a psychodrama called "elections" that Western liberals believe are therapeutically efficacious against every conceivable malady in the body politic. Democracy is strong medicine, every bit as miraculous as penicillin, but some cultures, like some patients, are allergic to it. The best medicine won't help allergic patients, and sometimes it might kill them...
What are the answers? Hard to say.
But holding up Western democracy as a panacea to the world's woes may not be a realistic solution.
At best, it is arrogantly simplistic and fails to adequately deal with the insidious cultural and religious realities.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Today's Record editorial pillories Dalton McGuinty for his stubborn, dictatorial, bone-headed refusal to even consider the possibility of listening to the committee which he promised would be allowed to review the hated health tax (which as you know primarily goes to general revenues).
Ah, but the scathing tone of the Liberal-bootlicking Record's rebuke is music to my ears. Remember now. This is one of the Liberal party's MSM lemming minions.
Finally they start to see the picture we were warning about:
"This is a terrible, cynical and infuriating position for the leader of Ontario to adopt. It reduces the pending probe of the health tax by the finance and economic affairs committee to a farce..."
"What a load of hooey..." (Well, it is a family paper).
"But if that reasoning made sense in 2004, it is absurd today . . . That tsunami of new cash has obliterated the government's deficit and left it blissfully floating on a sea of tax revenue ."
The editorial ends with this:
"By proceeding with the review, McGuinty will certainly keep a promise. But if his autocratic dictates make the review worthless, the promise he has kept will be worthless, too."
Gee, ya think?
Saturday, December 22, 2007
The Post has a great piece on the 'open 24 hours' craze that seems to be intensifying as the big day approaches - Shopping at 4 a.m. appeals to those leading hectic lives.
Why do we do this? The other day the ladies in my workout class were discussing all the demands we face this time of year. One said she couldn't sleep the other night, so she got up in the middle of the night and wrote out all her Christmas cards!
Do we put this burden on ourselves? It seems that women are usually the Christmas directors in each family. Why do we assume these expectations?
One of my favourite authors, Ed Hallowell, is quoted in the above-noted article:
"It's good news and bad news, in general, about modern life. The good news is we can do so much; the bad news is we can do so much," said Dr. Hallowell, also the author of CrazyBusy: Strategies for Coping in a World Gone ADD. "If you have no boundaries, take every message, take every call, go to every store, go through every opportunity, you run yourself ragged and so you see people becoming crazy busy."Related article - Last-minute shoppers can blame technology.
People must protect themselves from ceaseless demands on their time and attention as the ever-elusive work-life-balance comes under siege by retailers.
"It becomes crucial to prioritize. Otherwise you become the victim of your own enthusiasm and you end up trying to do too much. You make yourself too available and then nothing is fun."
Well, if you crave even more distraction, check out these links:
Great Letter to the Editor here in the Post - Showing our PM in a bad light. The CBC-Liberal conspiracy theory is advanced. Check out the Black Rod too.
-Also: CBC news coverage a bit of a charade - Lorne Gunter.
Stephen Taylor - CBC responds to Doug Finley.
John Ivison - Dion's poverty plan could cost economy:
...However, an internal government analysis of Mr. Dion's spending plans, obtained by the National Post, suggests that when Canadians take a closer look at what the Liberals are proposing, they may decide the country can ill afford to be run by a man one of his Liberal leadership rivals once confided "couldn't balance a cheque book."
In other news, the outrage over the pathetic sentence given to the pedophile-Internet-porn-father seems to have finally caught the attention of the powers that be - Crown to review pedophile dad's 'slap on the wrist'. Both levels of government need to get on board here. When even liberals are outraged, then something is very, very wrong.
Why is our society so anti-children?
Related: Battle lines drawn on crime - Michael Harris.
And Lottogate continues - The OLG? Quit kidding around - David Menzies.
Friday, December 21, 2007
See? Don't give up.
We can make a difference.
In today's Record (Families of people with mental illness often have little influence over care), Christiane Sadeler, executive Director of the Community Safety & Crime Prevention Council states:
...it's clear that Lapierre is "a very troubled young man. I must admit I was a little puzzled to see he was discharged," she said.
She said when mental health legislation was changed, community supports were to be put in place. "I would claim there is not nearly enough," she said.
Of course, we all know by now that most of our so-called health tax goes to general revenues.
Sadeler also critiques our legal system as it pertains to the mentally ill:
"Families are in a difficult position because of the current mental health legislation," she said. "They can encourage and support, but they have no capacity to have someone detained."
She said the original intent of changes made more than a decade ago to the Mental Health Act was "to ensure over-containment of people with mental health issues doesn't happen.
"Maybe the legislation, in some cases goes, beyond what was originally intended."
Where is Dalton McGuinty's voice in all this?
The complex protocol required for admission to an acute psychiatric unit is also detailed in the article. An accompanying piece shows how much police time goes into dealing with the mentally ill.
Clearly, something needs to be done to improve the system in terms of funding for beds and community support, as well as possibly another look into revamping the Ontario Mental Health Act to facilitate the process for getting help for people who are so troubled and irrational that they don't realize how badly they need mental health care.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Great update on CBC-Gate and a bonus Pablo Rodriguez smackdown!
Oh, and he gets a shot in at Paul Szabo too.
Nice way to relax after a long night of wrapping.
Interesting how the CBC is quick to divulge names in some circumstances, but not others...
John Oakley: Who do you find less unsavoury? Brian Mulroney or the CBC?
The Black Rod - Bloggers out Krista Erickson as CBC-Liberal collusion suspect.
A view from the other side of the fence - So much Szabo, so little space - X Marks the Spot.
Friday Update: Post - Father who abused daughter, live on the Internet, gets four years.
This one is very revealing - 'Disgusting' sentence for abusive father.
Paul Gillespie, the chief executive of Kids Internet Safety Alliance, said the sentence should have been closer to 10 to 20 years, not four.
"I think this sentence is absolutely disgusting," he said. "The fact that in the real time he will probably be out of custody in less than 12 months is something that even by Canadian standards is absolutely disgraceful."
CBC - 4-year sentence for online sexual abuser a 'slap on the wrist': Tory.
TABaker - Not enough.
Unambig - 34 Months In Jail For Raping His Daughter Live On Internet?
Christie Blatchford - Child Porn. Why don't the punishments fit the crime? Via Dr. Roy.
"I knew he was off the wall,'' a shaken Paul La Pierre said outside court yesterday before his 22-old-son made his first appearance.
"I realized the severity of the situation. He'd been using insane language and acting like he was a victim of everything.''
In the past year and half, he's been hospitalized four times, he said. Three of those times were at the Grand River Hospital psychiatric ward. He was released just five or six weeks ago.
"We fought,'' his father said. "He was always released.
"We said, 'Look, we don't think he's ready.' But he was self-admitted. They couldn't hold him. This is totally unnecessary. It could have been prevented.''
'On Tuesday morning, he had made his son visit his psychiatrist.
"They released him with a different prescription."
He was so worried about his son's recent erratic behaviour, he called a cab to take him to the hospital later that day...
Stephen Gehl, a local mental-health lawyer, explains that for someone to be kept in the hospital "there needs to be a mental disorder that results in a present apprehension of harm to self or others, or inability to care for oneself."
Yet the signs seemed to be there. The rest of the article contains interviews with his friends who explain how troubled LaPierre was - especially recently. There is even an online diary where he describes himself as "emotionally unstable", and discusses his interests in Marxism, Buddhism, drugs and sexual fetishes.
On a rave website, he stated:
How many other Trevor LaPierre's are roaming around out there like a powder keg - ready to explode?
This tragedy begs for a thorough review of the whole system.
* * * *
Update: Star - Blog may be linked to Christmas Card Killer.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
In other news, Dalton won't give up his precious Health Tax (the majority of which goes to general revenues.)
I'm torn between wanting to get rid of Dalton as Ontario Premier, and the nightmare scenario of imagining him as Prime Minister of Canada. And who would succeed Dalton anyway? Nobody I'm cheering for, that's for sure.
On second thought, hang in there Stephane!
Update: Local Liberals gear up to challenge ruling Tories - Record.
This tragic story about the seemingly random murder of local resident Hunter Brown has been haunting me - Who murdered Hunter Brown?
Bad enough to have it happen anytime, but at Christmas it is especially poignant and disturbing. I can't imagine the horrors this family must be going through right now. As his son said on the local news yesterday, he didn't deserve to go that way.
This senior was the epitome of the Christmas spirit. He was killed as he set out on his traditional delivery of Christmas cards to his neighbours.
And of course there was the recent sad story about the woman who was killed by the snow plough near London. A horrible accident.
Please give your family members a big hug every day. You just never know.
Post - Police warn public to look out for Waterloo attacker.
CTV - ARREST IN ATTACK POSSIBLY RELATED TO SENIOR'S SLAYING.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
At one point, Graham asked Dion, "Are you confident . . . that you can communicate with English Canada in a way the competes with Mr. Harper or is that still a challenge?"
Dion (complete with hand gestures):
"I think it's a work in progress. My aim is to speak English good enough that when people are driving with the traffic, with the noise, that they hear me; they understand..."
Does that English tutor come with a money-back guarantee, Mr. Dion?
In spite of all the histrionics emanating from Bali last week, the issue of the Environment didn't even make CTV's Top Ten Canadian Stories.
More bad news for the Kyoto Kult - The Looney was Number One.
Reality bites, huh?
Related: Lorne Gunter - For Kyoto's Champions, the meetings never end:
...Achievement means little to the UN's climate crusaders. It's the appearance of activity that counts. Keep moving, keep meeting, keep the shrimp toast and single malts coming, and the need actually to accomplish some tangible environmental outcome becomes inconsequential.
The Kyoto process is the ultimate triumph of symbolism over substance.
Consider the reception for Kevin Rudd, the new Australian prime minister. He wins power on the eve of the Bali conference and announces his first act as PM will be to sign the Kyoto accord and agree to deep emissions cuts --perhaps as much as 60% by 2020. He then flies off to the Indonesia resort where the 15,000 delegates and hangers-on welcome him as a conquering hero.
But three days into the UN gathering, Australia's electricity commission tells the new prime minister that his government's proposals will lead to a rise in electrical bills of at least 30%, perhaps more. Such an increase would almost surely stunt Australia's booming economy. So Mr. Rudd backs down. He announces his country will not agree to immediate cuts, but rather now favours cuts of 50-60% by 2050.
These are the same levels and deadline that have been advocated by Canada's Conservative government for more than a year. But because our Tories refuse to pay homage to Kyoto as the be-all and end-all of environmental compassion, they are vilified by delegates while the Rudd government is celebrated. Symbolism over substance...
One of Lorne's best columns, IMHO.
Also see Grey Canada - Emissions by country.
Tuesday Update: Remember Austyn, our resident Political Prodigy?
Well it seems that last night he and his Dad were discussing BCer in Toronto's post - CTV omits global warming/environment from top stories list.
His Dad sent me this email:
I'm not sure if you remember me, but I'm pretty sure that you remember my very smart son Austyn.
He was reading over my shoulder as I was going through my regular reads of blogs on the internet. As I was scrolling through liblogs he got me to go back to BCer's. He wanted to read it and after we read it and the comments he asked me if I noticed anything.
Austyn's point was someone that is so concerned that the environment/global warming was not in the top ten of Canadian news stories, but still flies all over to re qualify for Aeroplan Elite status, obviously is not actually concerned about global warming...
I see a future Blogging Tory in the making. Well done, Austyn!
Monday, December 17, 2007
I support Justice Margaret Woolcott who did not want a police officer wearing a poppy in her court. The wearing of poppies is no longer a neutral symbol of honour to our fallen heroes. Without intending disrespect to our veterans of the past, present, or future, I want readers to know that, for a small but growing percentage of Canadians, the poppy has become a partisan symbol of acquiescence to the necessity for war and violence as a solution to human conflicts...
I'm guessing he's not big on "Support our Troops" ribbons or pins either.
Tuesday Update: Excellent rebuttal letter in today's Record (Letter of the Day) - Poppy is the symbol of the price of war:
...If Rev. Bosch is correct that most pacifists focus on the poppy as a symbol of war, I trust they can accept that to me and to many of those who came back alive, and to many of those related to those who fought and died, the poppy does not represent war nor the taking of lives. Instead, it represents the freedoms we enjoy today, personal sacrifice, unbelievable hardship, lifetime comradeship, gravestones in a far-off country and the knowledge that we need to try harder to avoid letting people like Adolf Hitler ever again rise to power.
The poppy is a symbol of peace. The poppy cries out "Please, never again. The cost is way too high."
In contrast to Ms. Mathyssen who seemed to have been dragged kicking and screaming into the House of Commons to deliver a formal apology, Karen Redman had the decency to issue an unqualified and heartfelt mea culpa very soon after the original debacle.
In any case, my angry letter has been answered in record time, considering that it was sent by snail-mail:
"Thank you for contacting my office concerning the recent incident in the House of Commons where I made a comment regarding allegations that had been made to my colleague...
I sincerely regret the comments that I made in the House of Commons and I have apologized to James Moore, Member of Parliament for Port Moody-Westwood-Port Coquitlan, personally and in the House. I have a good deal of respect for Mr. Moore and I regret the hurt that was caused by my comments..."
We all make mistakes.
It's what we do next that makes the difference.
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Anyway, I just received this link from an acquaintance:
How NOT to pull your car out of the Snow.
Warning! Do not watch the video while eating or drinking, or your computer screen will be wearing it about half way through.
I learned the hard way.
Saturday, December 15, 2007
But reader 'Ron' made a good point on a previous post:
At Sat Dec 15, 12:36:00 AM EST, Ron said…
The comments about Szabo and his handling of this line of questioning during the committee meeting is bang on -- I watched the proceedings and was surprised he allowed this line of questioning - up to then he was relatively within bounds in his chairing of the committee but that ruling was way out to lunch. I want to know if he was aware of it in advance; did he know the source; who instructed him to allow the question. I hope the Conservatives come back with questions about Liberal actions and behaviour. Mulroney may not have evidence or direct knowledge but neither did Schriber - just lay out a few suspicions, inuendoes, and broad quesions on what may have happened to the 40 million missing in the sponsorship matter. Since Szabo is so free with the range of questioning, I am sure there will be no problem with this line of questioning.
Sandy also makes a great point at Jack's Newswatch:
...what is not right is when a journalist influences a member of parliament in what questions to ask on a parliamentary committee. Why? Because that member of parliament has been elected by his or her constituents, is under oath and is granted parliamentary immunity from prosecution of libel.
Therefore, if members of parliament use leading questions provided by a reporter, the journalist and his or her media outlet are enjoying parliamentary privilege by proxy — the result of which could be unfounded allegations, innuendo and smear with absolute impunity...
Sandy also references a great post at The Black Rod.
If this is common practice amongst reporters and elected Members of Parliament, I think we the people need to get involved and scream our heads off!
MSM sure won't do it for us.
Update: On the other hand, I have to congratulate the Star for keeping up with this story:
The CBC has begun an internal investigation and possible disciplinary process after one of its parliamentary reporters suggested questions to a Liberal MP on the Commons ethics committee.
The probe follows a formal complaint by the Conservative party. It centres on claims that MP Pablo Rodriguez (L-Honoré-Mercier) directed questions from the CBC to Brian Mulroney during a highly anticipated Commons committee hearing on Thursday.
Now exactly what does the LPC plan to do regarding their part in this alleged collusion?
Ethics expert investigating CBC-Liberal collusion. CBC Ombudsman Vince Carlin has just been handed the hot potato from Hell.
I think I just found my new favourite blog.
Sandy found an update to the CBC 'investigation' buried at the end of this article.
Steve Janke - The Conservatives are demanding answers to allegations of Liberal-CBC collusion.
Wudrick Blog - CBCGate: Name that Journo. This is a great post, and Dean Del Mastro actually comments!
Today's National Post describes the relationship between Aqsa and her parents through the eyes of the Tahir family, which had offered her a place to stay prior to Aqsa's death (Aqsa's last days):
...The Tahirs say that days after she moved in with them, Mr. and Ms. Parvez came over, and both families had a two hour meeting with Aqsa.
Her mother cried. Mr. Parvez calmly implored his daughter in Punjabi to tell him why she left and what he could do to bring her home. Aqsa barely spoke, except to say that she "just wanted change," according to Ms. Tahir. Privately Aqsa told her that she wanted "to get more out of life".
Mr. Parvez appeared to be relieved that his daughter was safe, said Ms. Tahir, and not alone on the street. He was content to see Aqsa living in a household that resembled his own, said Ms. Tahir, and told her to stay as long as she needed to. Aqsa asked if she could bring items from her house back, and he said they would arrange that "together."
"That's how he left," said Ms. Tahir, an immigration and paralegal consultant who immigrated from Pakistan 10 years ago.
But Aqsa, it seemed, was still searching for independence.
A few days after that first meeting, over coffee in Tim Hortons, Aqsa told her father that she wanted to live on her own, she wanted to go to school in the mornings and work in the evenings. Mr. Parvez offered to let her take over the basement. Aqsa said she would think about it...
Aqsa did not have a boyfriend, said Ms. Tahir, who expressed dismay at the "rumours" in the press, including speculation that it was conflict over wearing the hijab that triggered the alleged murder.
The Tahirs did not know of any dispute over Aqsa wearing a hijab and said that the older Parvez sisters did not always wear the head scarf.
By that account, you would think that all was sunshine and roses with this family - Just a small issue of teenage rebellion.
So exactly what went so horribly wrong when Aqsa went home to collect more clothes?
Something just doesn't add up here.
Friday, December 14, 2007
(Update: CBC is messing with the links. See National Newswatch. Story now found under 'Arts & Entertainment'. Ain't that the truth...)
Considering how much the Liberals discounted this, things could get interesting.
Check out MDL link - Mike Duffy Live: Scott Reid and Tim Powers on the allegation that the Liberals allowed a media outlet to write their questions.
Listen to Scott Reid deny, deny, deny.
Stephen Taylor has the whole story here.
Also see Steve Janke.
Canwest has picked it up - Alleged CBC-Liberal collusion triggers Tory complaint.
Now the Star. H/T Wudrick Blog.
The Canadian Press story here discusses the outrage in the conservative blogosphere towards the end of the report.
Saturday Update: National Post - CBC looks into allegations over Mulroney questioning.
Paul Wells - Don't Tell Doug Finley...
Sandy has a great post on this at Jack's Newswatch. Are reporters supposed to have 'Parliamentary Privilege'?
Dr. Roy - MSM reports on CBC misdeeds. (Comment from 'Ron' nails it, as far as I'm concerned.)
In his fall economic outlook released yesterday, Finance Minister Dwight Duncan reported revenues are up $2.6 billion. Coincidentally, the so-called Ontario Health Premium raked in $2.6 billion in 2006-07 and is projected to bring in $2.7 billion in 2007-08.
So who did Duncan give that extra money to? Hint: He didn't give it back to me and you. No, yesterday the government announced $3 billion in hand-outs -- to businesses. That's right, they're speeding up the elimination of the capital tax for the manufacturing and resource sector.
She call it the 'Reverse Robin Hood' - "Your health tax money goes to give fat-cat banks and other businesses a tax break." Oh, and of course Duncan slips his pal David Miller a "bail-out", according to Blizzard.
Well the Liberals have never denied that most of the so-called "health" premium or tax goes into General Revenues, so her story seems plausible. That fact was highlighted by the Globe during the past election:
...what the Liberals call "a health premium" is really a surtax that goes into general revenues, with only a notional allocation to health care.
Personally, I'm not going to get worked up about this. Uncle Dalton and his well-paid friends knows what's best. To be fair, Ontario does need to do something to mitigate the exodus of manufacturing, but as Christina says, let's call it a business assistance tax or a transit tax or a even a 'keep Liberals elected' tax. But don't call it a health anything when the money goes to general revenues - left to dole out for the most politically expedient cause of the day.
So if your kids have to go without this winter because of the health tax, just feel warm knowing that you're doing your part to bail out big business and David Miller.
It's the Ontario way.
Update: Record - Let Santa Dalton keep on giving.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
5:15 p.m. - Rodriguez denies the allegation on MDL.
Stephen Taylor's on it!
More at Crux-of-the-Matter.
PTBC - Alleged CBC/Liberal Party collusion claimed by former Liberal MP. Joel has part of the press release.
Le Politico - Mike Duffy confirms it: CBC wrote questions for Liberal MPs on ethics committee.
L. Ian MacDonald - As low as they come.
Brian Mulroney is testifying now in front of the Commons Committee and how his life has been impacted by spurious allegations.
This will be quite the day for media and bloggers.
CTV is providing the testimony live.
Paul Szabo is not off to a good start in trying to pretend to be non-partisan. He cuts Mulroney off continually. A Conservative MP asks that Mulroney be granted the same courtesy as Schreiber.
Star - Cash payment 'Not illegal'.
Post - Mulroney denies wrongdoing before ethics committee.
Post live-blogging here! - Brian Mulroney - Live on the Hill.
From the Post:
"He's sitting over there in his mansion in Rockcliffe chuckling ... he got his get out of jail card. He got what he wanted ... I think he seriously misled every member of this house with this false affidavit."
We've all been played for fools.
Macleans also Live-blogging.
Globe - Schreiber will 'say anything, sign anything, do anything' – Mulroney.
CTV - Mulroney explains cash payments from Schreiber.
Update: AA - Did CBC write some of the Liberal questions to BM today?
SDA readers heard it too!
SDA - Mulroney Testimony: CBC on the hotseat.
Stephen Taylor - Stephen updates post with press release from Doug Finley writing to CBC Ombudsman.
7 p.m. Breaking! CBC reviewing claim reporter fed questions to Liberal MP.
However, the outrage has been growing. Today the National Post chastises Judge Woolcott for suggesting that police officers not wear a poppy in her courtroom - "Respect the Poppy".
The Post makes this observation:
The judge did not make clear who she thought might consider the poppy an unacceptable symbol, or what their reasoning would be. Not that it matters: To the extent there are hateful eccentrics out there who fail to comprehend the disasters and destruction that would have befallen our world if Canadian and other allied soldiers didn't valiantly put their lives on the line, we don't see why public officials should be pandering to their sensitivities...
Madam Justice, I believe you owe the veterans in this country a sincere apology.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Right beside the National Post's politically-correct editorial is a candid op-ed by Tarek Fatah and Farzana Hassan - The deadly face of Muslim Extremism.
Fatah and Hassan are members of the Muslim Canadian Congress, and have received death threats in the past for expressing their views.
They must feel that this message is worth the risk.
...If convicted, Aqsa's father and brother must be handed the strictest penalty available under the law. As for the imams and clergy of Canada's mosques, who constantly berate young women for not wearing the hijab or snub them for "violating Islam," they need to reflect on the consequences of their sermons.
Consider, as an example, the Montreal mosque that recently posted on its Web site a warning to the effect that if young girls took off their hijab, they could end up getting raped and having "illegitimate children." Other proffered risks included "Stresses, insecurity and suspicion in the minds of husbands" and "instigating young people to deviate towards the path of lust."
As if the threat of rape and the fear of illegitimate children were not enough, these pre-teen girls were told that if they took off their hijab, they would cease to be Muslims: "By removing your hijab, you have destroyed your faith. Islam means submission to Allah in all our actions." Little wonder then, that Canadian girls walk away from sports tournaments rather than remove their hijabs...
Fatah and Hassan suggest that this may put undue pressure on Muslim men to exert control over the women in their families:
Radical Muslim men consider themselves ultimately responsible for the conduct of the womenfolk. This outlook is rooted in a medieval ethos that treats women as nonpersons, unable to decide for themselves what they should wear, where they must go and what they must accomplish in life. If their conduct is seen as contravening this austere religious outlook, they are invariably subjected to abuse.
Today's Star discloses a disturbing tidbit that was alluded to in a Global newscast last night - that the brother may have had more to do with this than simply obstructing justice:
...Friends of the slain girl said Parvez's brother picked her up Monday morning from a bus stop, where she was waiting to go to school, and told her she'd better come home to get a change of clothes...
Yes, women from all different kinds of faith and cultural backgrounds have been the target of abuse and violence.
However, this does not excuse us from trying to consider all possible systemic causes of the tragedy, and focus on doing all we can to prevent this from happening again.
Anything less is an act of complicity.
More family violence against women here.
CTV - Autopsy shows teen died from 'neck compression':
The United Nations estimates at least 5,000 women a year are killed for committing adultery, defying tradition, or for simply talking to the wrong man and thereby bringing shame upon relatives.
Exact numbers are impossible to know because the majority of such murders -- women are the main victims -- go unreported and the guilty unpunished.
United Muslim Women of Canada's Anisa Ali said the public shouldn't assume that honour killings only happen in the Muslim community.
Honour killings. Because the death of the female relative is preferable to the shame she would bring on the family if she were allowed to live...
Hard to comprehend.
Record - A Muslim teen dies, a nation asks why.
Barbara Kay - How Canada let Aqsa down.
Jack's Newswatch - Cynapse: Swift justice for Aqsa.
Is this a normal way to deal with such things? I never heard of a Canadian citizen being barred from a particular town before.
More details at Caledonia Wakeup Call.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Very sad update: Aqsa Parvez has died of the injuries inflicted on her by her own father.
Aqsa's father, Muhammad Parvez, 57, has been charged with murder. He made a brief court appearance this morning and was remanded in custody pending another court appearance Wednesday.
The teen's brother - Waqas Parvez, 26 - has been charged with obstructing justice.
To some people, the hijab is a symbol of faith, culture and a means of modesty in an increasingly secular, anything-goes Canada.
To others it is a symbol of oppression; even though some hijab-wearers insist it is more liberating because women are judged for themselves rather than their looks.
But all this hinges on the assumption of choice.
Such does not appear to be the case with a 16-year old girl who is now in critical condition after being choked by her father; who apparently was enraged by his daughter's desire to wear Western clothing - Were clothes behind the attack on teenager? (Post)
Her condition is so grave that police have not yet charged the man arrested at the scene until they know whether it will be a charge of murder or attempted murder. He was scheduled to appear in Brampton court today.
This article is a real eye-opener. I wonder how many other Canadian girls are out there in similar circumstances. They must eventually either give in to the intimidation or face abuse of some kind.
A frightening situation for a country that considers itself so advanced in the area of Human Rights.
More from the Toronto Sun - Friends feared worst.
Star - Teen clings to life, dad in custody.
P.C. - The Star on Hijab Murder - It 'can divide families'.
Montreal Muslim News - The Voice of Aqsa's blood cries from the ground:
...Now, every time people see a hijab-wearing woman walking down the street they will wonder if these women are forced to wear it for fear of the dangerous consequences if they refuse...
Above link from Dust my Broom - Aqsa Parvez has reportedly died.
Jonathan Kay - On the death of Aqsa Parvez.
Little Green Footballs - Strangled to death for not wearing a Hijab (with a dig at the Star).
Related: Quebec union wants a charter to ban religious garb -Post.
The Abaya Monologues - Post.
Globe - When multi morphs into plural.
First we have various Letters to the Editor, including the Letter of the Day - Judges have proudly worn poppies in court.
Even the Record's editorial gives Justice Margaret Woolcott a blast (accompanied with all due respect) - The poppy should be welcome everywhere.
Justice Woolcott never said who might take offence at a police officer wearing a poppy. That's because, in reality, no one probably would take umbrage. However, the best response to someone who objects to the poppy would be a polite but firm, "tough.'' Police who wish to should continue wearing the poppy. As for Justice Woolcott, she should read a good history book.
Well, Stephen Taylor suggested a much more eloquent response should Const. Haines ever find himself in this situation again:
"Your honour, this symbol represents the sacrifice that braver Canadians than you or me made to have a free and fair court. It is a symbol, yes, much like the robes you wear and the gavel you use. It is this symbol which gives the ones you carry any authority, for without the sacrifice represented by those I honour, your symbols bear none."
-- Stephen Taylor
Afterwards, Stephen notes that in Canada we would refer to the judge as "Madam Justice".
Whatever you want to call Justice Woolcott, the message still rings true.
Monday, December 10, 2007
Anyway, here is an assortment of links which I hope you find interesting. I often post these types of things for future reference. Blogger can be a useful tool for research with its search functions.
Threat to Freedom of Speech in Canada:
SDA - Macleans Magazine: A Case Study of Media-Propagated Islamophobia. Excellent comment by one of Kate's U.S. readers:
As an American, I cannot believe what is going on in your country concerning that disgusting (and clearly dangerous) "Human Rights Commission" of yours. When criticism of government policy can be penalized as "hate speech", you are no longer sliding down a slippery slope. Rather, you are in the muck. I will never again regret the appearance of flag burners in my country. I may disagree with them, at times to the point of fury, but I will regard their presence as a blessed sign that free speech is alive and well in America.
Posted by: Robert Pujat at December 10, 2007 3:57 PM
Tobacco Tax Protest:
LFP - Farmers to give Natives tobacco. Big tax loss for government.
The convoy would be illegal. Special permits are required to transport tobacco from Delhi to Caledonia. It is also illegal to transact tobacco outside the auction exchange in Delhi...
Will the OPP uphold the law?
Sex offender registry funds diverted, Tories say. (OPP diverted funds...)
Runciman suggested the OPP diverted some of the money for the sex offender registry to pay for policing the nearly two-year aboriginal occupation of a disputed housing development in Caledonia.Isn't that great?
Sun - Province failing Christopher.
Paying homage to Mother Earth:
Celestial Junk - Ecophobia: Taking Advantage of NHL Hammer-heads.
FLICK OFF, eh?
Making lots of green: A convenient £50m for Green Gore (Times, courtesy of National Newswatch). Also see Australia 'stalling Bali Talks'. Wow!! Wasn't Rudd supposed to be the Environmentalist's messiah or something?
Highly recommended: Angelo Persichilli - Dion's Polluted Reputation.
Anyone got some darts? Suzuki as a guest columnist for the Star - Could there be a worse combination?
Lorne Gunter - Harper right to oppose Bali proposals.
Lorrie Goldstein - New Kyoto must include U.S., China.
Big Blue Wave - The Unborn Victims of Crime Bill: It's a go!
Thursday, Dec. 13 - Second Reading scheduled (first time debated)
National Post - The NDP's Nosey Nanny. BTW, isn't there a screen of some kind that you can buy for a laptop so personal information can't be seen at an angle by straying eyes?
Update: Dr. Roy says yes!!! Memo to James Moore - Put this on your Christmas list!!!
Steve Janke has a video for Irene Mathyssen.
Dr. Roy found the link to Irene's imaginary diary!
What would Irene say about this??? (H/T Mary T in comments) - Don't look, James!!!
Times Colonist - Sleazy NDP porn allegation dishonours all MP's.
More grievances from the Eternally Offended:
David Warren - Suing for Silence.
Record - Lack of transit link to Toronto an 'embarrassment', Cannon says and Minister blames cities, province for bogged-down transportation.
O.K. Premier. C'est maintenant votre tour.
Health care Accessibility:
Michael Coren - Two-Tier Trauma
Ottawa Sun - New funding trims abortion wait times. "Now, new funding has cut the wait time to terminate a pregnancy to about a week"... Well, at least Smitherman has his priorities straight, right?
Potential Dion Replacements:
Maybe Chretien should try again? (Don't it always seem to go, you don't know whatcha got til it's gone...)
More to come...
Sunday, December 09, 2007
A Kitchener judge doesn't think it's appropriate for constables and lawyers to wear poppies in her courtroom - Judge frowns on poppies in courtroom:
"Because however much -- and I really probably should have said something to (defence lawyer Richard Prendiville, who was also wearing a poppy) too -- but however much you may think that's a totally acceptable symbol, and that it is totally neutral, that might not be entirely the case for everybody who comes to court," the judge said.
Woolcott continued: "It represents a symbol of support and I suspect that 99.999 per cent of us happily wear it outside of the courtroom. You probably should not wear anything like that in court."
Before she excused Haines, Woolcott told him that she might ask him to remove the poppy next time...
Just when you thought things couldn't possibly get any worse.
"Endless possibilities squandered in political correctness"
Just like Trusty Tory, I don't usually like going after Dippers, but my motives are different - The NDP is the CPC's best friend for splitting the vote on the left. However, some things just transcend partisanship, and this is one of them.
The Star's Ottawa Bureau-chief, Bruce Campion-Smith had an article in yesterday's paper that contains a wakeup call of sorts for Jack Layton (Apology of sorts for 'porn slur').
In my opinion, Irene Mathyssen is just not MP material. Perhaps she could function as an Independent, but she has demonstrated that her mouth and her own selfish interests take priority over her sense of working with the team, and even over human decency.
After her (forced) formal apology to James Moore in the House on Friday morning, Mathyssen didn't have the good sense to keep her big yap shut:
Yesterday, she publicly apologized in the Commons for not raising her concern with Moore privately.
"I recognize that would have been the appropriate step," Mathyssen said in an interview.
But she maintains such photos have no place in the Commons.
"I think that is a mistake and I'm sure that he has learned that, the importance of prudence," Mathyssen said. "What I saw was not appropriate."
When I first read that, I assumed she had said it before the formal apology, but the subtitle in the article says, "Sorry for raising laptop photos publicly, MP tells House, but later calls images inappropriate". So this was actually said afterwards!!!
Jack Layton has been notably absent from all this embarrassment; instead sending Libby Davies to be the cleanup attendant. I think he's afraid that some of this dirt might stick to him. He probably wants to distance himself as much as possible from the ongoing train wreck.
So here's my advice for Jack - Make use of the handyman's best friend, and place it firmly over Irene's mouth.
Or bite the bullet and dump her altogether. She's not a team-player.
Her constituents should do the same come the next election.
Friday, December 07, 2007
"The member has explained what those images were and I have accepted his explanation," Mathyssen said Friday in the House, after cancelling scheduled events in her London-area riding and flying to Ottawa to make the statement.
Robert Fife says she'll have to explain why she said one thing to her home-town paper, and then turned around and hoofed it to Ottawa for this volte-face. He offers his interpretation of how it likely went down:
"But I'm sure that the New Democratic Party leadership said Irene, you were wrong, completely wrong on this, you owe Mr. Moore an apology, get up there and unreservedly apologize and let's put this matter to rest. That is what she has done."
Meanwhile, I'm sure James Moore will be refraining from showing pics of his dog in the House from now on.
Post - Should James Moore be satisfied with today's apology? John Turley-Ewart nails it:
Perhaps Jack Layton has also learned a lesson from this whole incident as well — that Ms. Mathyssen is a liability rather than an asset to a party with the pretension of having a conscience but a track record for being unscrupulous.
CTV video available via Jack's Newswatch. H/T Plattytalk.
Platty wonders where Jack Layton is in all this. I'm thinking he wants to distance himself as much as possible from the stench. I'm sure Karen Redman wishes she hadn't hitched her wagon to this train wreck.
I was planning to go on a brief hiatus, but reader Ruth left this tip in a previous thread - Mathyssen stands by her complaint. (also posted at National Newswatch).
How can her constituents 'stand by' her now? This is absolutely outrageous.
James Moore has shown a lot more class and grace in this situation than I would have. I have great admiration for him. He has taken the high road.
Mathyssen has succeeded in casting herself as a swarmy, vindictive fool, by not letting this go.
Even her fellow NDP members were apologizing and saying it was a lesson learned.
Mathyssen needs to take a time out, and as Karen Redman had originally suggested to Moore, take a close look in her heart and perhaps try to examine her true motives.
L. Ian MacDonald - MP savaged for having pictures of his girlfriend (obviously written before the latest Mathyssen misstep):
Moore, one of the most promising young members of the House, was devastated.
As it happened, voters from his riding were his guests in the visitors' gallery that day. How humiliating is that? As he later said: "That's on Wikipedia under my name for the next five years."
In light of the latest, I wonder what Goldstein and MacDonald would say?
Personally, I am beyond anger. I can't imagine how James Moore is feeling today.
Notice how Libby Davies assures the House that Mathyssen will formally apologize too. No mention of any qualification that she thinks Moore should not have personal pics in the House:
Hon. Karen Redman (Kitchener Centre, Lib.):
Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. Yesterday the member for London—Fanshawe rose on a point of order concerning alleged behaviour by the member for Port Moody—Westwood—Port Coquitlam. I also spoke on this point of order and made comments that I would like to apologize for if they caused any undue concern and embarrassment to the member for Port Moody--Westwood--Port Coquitlam.
Hon. Jay Hill (Secretary of State and Chief Government Whip, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, I would like to express my appreciation to the chief opposition whip for that apology.
I would like to point out though, on this point of order, that all too often some members in the Chamber jump to conclusions and they can do other members a lot of damage and cause a lot of hurt unnecessarily.
Obviously, we look forward to the apology that I understand will be forthcoming from the member for London—Fanshawe as well, but the point is that what we have seen in the Chamber is some of the worst. When people are unjustly accused, it becomes a national media circus and story.
On behalf of my colleague who is not in the Chamber at the moment, and I know I am not supposed to say that but I think that is obvious, I will accept the apology of the hon. member.
However, I would point out that, especially as whips, we are the people who are responsible for the morale and the discipline of our respective caucuses. I think it is incumbent upon us to reflect on that and not jump to conclusions.
I thank both whips for their submissions. The hon. member for Vancouver East is rising on the same point of order.
Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP):
Mr. Speaker, I would just like to say, listening to the opposition whip and the government whip, that certainly the member for London—Fanshawe will at the earliest opportunity be in the House to make an apology. Therefore, I just want to confirm that indeed that will happen.
I thank the hon. members for their attention to this matter. As I indicated yesterday, in my view it was a completely invalid point of order and I also indicated that it was not appropriate for it to have been raised in the House.
Time to dump Irene, Jack.