Wednesday, August 29, 2007

You see Black and White, but I see Red

Gentle readers, before I begin on any sort of dissertation on this fine day I must apologise for my unannounced hiatus; moving around St. John's is a hassle when it has to be done incrementally, and it's also really hard to post things on the internet when you're without internet. I know your lives revolve around my occasional updates so I'm trying to rectify the problem as soon as possible - in the meantime, I suggest you finish that knitting project you've been putting off.

Anyways, I was moved to venture out towards a public internet terminal because I've been noticing a curious infestation in the city here as of late.

It would appear that the city of St. John's has contracted a sudden case of Liberals.

Well, federal Liberals, at least. The party has apparently selected St. John's as the host city for their National Caucus events this year, and all the Liberal MPs and Senators have come out in force to apparently take in our wonderful scenery such as the vertical streets and The Bubble.

I'm not sure how far in advance this National Caucus bit is planned, but I can't say I'm especially surprised that the Red Army has chosen to set up camp here for the week; it's a safe bet that Newfoundland and Labrador is the national capital of anti-Tory sentiment at the moment, and because this province will never vote NDP without a gun to its head, assumedly the Liberals recognise that we will likely go entirely red in the next federal election and are most likely going to prod us in that direction over the coming days, weeks and months.

This, of course, is a pretty easy thing for Stephane Dion and his compatriots to do. Much to the chagrin of their provincial counterparts, the federal Liberal party can very easily sidle up with Danny Williams and his ~80% approval rating, and being who they are can also tap into this province's natural vitriol for Stephen Harper. For the Liberals, this is like the Grand Banks except instead of cod it is votes and the Premier is like a magical vote-collecting factory trawler (think Theodore Tugboat) and all they've got to do is rubber stamp his approval to collect all the votes until they run out and there is a moratorium declared and all the votes leave for Alberta and oh God the post-traumatic stress disorder is back and-


But is it really that strange for the Liberal Party of Canada to endorse a provincial Tory premier? Vote-garnering political rationality aside, the logic for such a move really does run a little deeper than it might first appear. Federally, politics is largely driven along more ideological lines; you can see a distinction between the centre-left Liberals and the more neo-conservative Conservatives - it's not quite as stark as the constrast between the Democrats and Republicans who wage war for control of the imperial palace to the south, but it's definitely there.

Not so much in provincial politics, however; in Newfoundland and Labrador, at least, we operate on a much more pragmatic basis, and there isn't really a strong overarching ideological theme to the parties here - we kind of just do what seems like a good idea at the time. Liberals and Liberals because their fathers and grandfathers were, and likewise with the Tories; this is why we've got this weird situation where Liberal premiers will make cuts to the public service and Tory premiers will insist on a (at least partial) nationalisation of natural resources and industries.

So, think about it - if you really look at what he's doing, is Premier Williams seem like more of a neocon ala Harper or did he actually know what he was talking about when he called himself a 'Red Tory' last year? While this is admittedly just a pet theory of mine, it's not entirely inconceivable that in another place and another time, Danny Williams might have been a federal MP flying under the banner of the Liberal Party of Canada. I mean, he's obviously got that fiscally conservative streak about him, but wasn't one Mr. Martin once fitted with that description? (Speaking of Martin, he should somewhere within the city limits of St. John's as I write this - I hear he likes to party, so make sure you bring your camera to George Street tonight.)

So in that sense, when Stephane Dion has a meeting with the Premier about economic issues or provincial Liberal MPs come out with reactions to Williams ranging from 'endorsement' to 'praise', it's not just to score political points here in the province - it may be because these kissing cousins legitimately see eye to eye on the issues.

Mmm, that's good food for thought. On that note, I'm off to go dig my camera out of a box and go out on a safari for some of Canada's political quasi-celebrities. If anyone catches a shot of Belinda Stronach, make sure to mail it to me so I can finish building my shrine to her in my closet showcase your photographic talent on the Internet!

And with that, we now return you to your regularly scheduled hiatus.

Friday, August 24, 2007

8/22 Never Forget

Stop for a second and take a deep breath.

Can't you taste the difference in the air? I knew it as soon as I awoke yesterday morning. Things were different.

We are officially living in a post-MOU world, and nothing will ever be the same.

I mean, its not a legally binding agreement, and we have very few details other than that it is the greatest deal in the history of time (or at least since Europeans traded smallpox for North America in the 17th century), but still. It's the thought that counts.

However, like all earth-shattering events that may or may not happen in the future, our new post-MOU world raises important questions. Namely, whether or not we'll have an Opposition on October 10th, or even if we need one.

Bill Rowe has been abusing the word 'juggernaut' over the past few days in talking about the Williams government machine, and as much as he is in desperate need of a thesaurus, he has a very good point; Williams may as well attach a steamroller to the front of his RV. Obviously, this throws some doubt on future existence of an Opposition party for the next 4 years or so.

This question of democracy comes on the heels of this wonderous deal-to-probably-make-a-deal and the Premier's intentions to not set it before the legislature for any kind of vote or examination of the details. But don't take my word for it:

"I hadn't even considered [bringing the details before the legislature] quite frankly[...][The opposition] would probably carry government in on their shoulders and pass it with a blink … This deal, is such a good deal for the government of Newfoundland and Labrador, that ratification wouldn't be an issue."
- Premier Danny Williams, according to
The current question of the future of the Opposition in this province has divided the province into two key camps:

  1. Those people who love Danny Williams and who believe he can do no wrong but think there should be an Opposition there just to prove democractically that he can actually do no wrong; and,
  2. Those people who love Danny Williams and believe he can do no wrong so there is no real reason to have an Opposition anyways because it will only slow down Danny's progress (made on a go-forward basis)

The best exemplary of this view was expressed by Minister Kathy Dunderdale calling into VOCM's BackTalk yesterday afternoon to reassure us that we don't need to be worried about the future of our democracy if/when the PCs win all 48 seats in the province.

Her rationale for this came in two major points. After reiterating that August 22nd was the greatest day in the history of the province, she first asserted that Premier Williams legitimately is Newfoundland's Messiah by informing us that:

"He is such a consensus builder [...] everyone in government is on the same page when we go into the House [...] he's such a visionary and I'm very excited and grateful to be working along with him."
- Kathy Dunderdale

With the memory of Fabian Manning and crab fishermen haunting my dreams, I was extremely worried that some MHAs may dissent with the Premier. I'm sure you can imagine my relief to find out that Danny Williams is committed to making sure everyone on his side of the House has the exact same position on every issue as he does. It's good to know that a 100% majority of PCs in the province would move as fast as possible to make Danny's visions a reality.

Secondly, and more importantly, the Minister made the same argument that most pro-Blue Flood indivduals have made on the airwaves: namely, that the current Opposition is basically useless and accomplishes nothing anyways, so by having no Opposition nothing will change at all (except that things will get better because Danny will get things done even faster).

This argument makes perfect sense. The Opposition has been too busy nitpicking silly things like transparency issues over fibre-optic cables or which government officials knew what about hormone test problems or whether or not selling FPI was handled properly. Most of the time the Opposition itself has admitted these are good ideas anyways, so why should we elect them again just to stand in the way of great progress? If there is one thing that history has shown, it's that when good ideas are involved, un-checked governments are physically incapable of acting in a corrupt manner.

So when the government says that getting our MOU was a beautiful, historic day for this province, they were right. Whether or not the deal ultimately turns out in a few years to be as marvellous as we're told or not (I'm not an economist, I only play one on television), that is not the real reason for the Premier's giddiness on Wednesday.

What was really happening at that press conference was a pulic approval-rating sanction to turn government up on Warp 9 in reshaping the province as our Prophet-in-Chief sees fit by any means so long as its "a good idea".

So remember where you were at noon on August 22nd, 2007: the day democracy in Newfoundland and Labrador became obsolete.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

"Separatists Are Wimps" (and other inflammatory titles)

Apparently, according to some of the gurus of the airwaves in this province, the Premier is "wimpy and wussy" if he opts for any course of action in the current dispute with Ottawa short of outright separation.

I mean, other small island populations have successfully become countries, so we should be able to do the same thing, right?

I'm not sure why not threatening to separate from the country is viewed as being a "wimpy" thing to do; to me, at least, advocating this separation schtick as opposed to working within the system to create a meaningful and constructive dialogue across the Canadian federation is akin to breaking up by sending your girlfriend a text message saying "btw we r broke up now n u can keep my stuff :(" rather than sitting down and actually talking about your problems to try and work something out. Maybe I've been out of juniour high too long and I forget the philosophical underpinnings of break-up-via-note-delivered-by-a-friend-of-a-friend that explain why it's as courageous as standing up to the tanks in Tianamen Square, but somehow I just don't see it.

But hey, I don't know what I'm talking about; I mean, I am afterall disagreeing with someone who hosts a radio show.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Sometimes a Cigar is just a Cigar

Yvonne Jones will win her riding on October 9th, 2007.

How do I know that at least one Liberal will have a parking spot on Confederation Hill come October 10th?

Because Jones has managed something hitherto thought impossible; being a strong Liberal MHA who not only looks like a better choice than the Tory candidate in her district but can also gain some bonus points by being able to praise Danny "The Size of my Poll is not Compensating for Anything" Williams. This would be one of those "I'll eat my hat" moments but fortunately for me I neither wear hats nor made any sort of prior statement regarding such activities.

That said, Dennis Normore made himself a pretty easy target for slagging by all sides. I think he was under the impression he was running for a seat in the Supreme Soviet instead of the House of Assembly; I don't believe I've heard things like "we need to be on the government side [...] otherwise we're going to pay dearly for it" or "this region may be sacrificial in the upcoming election" spoken so plainly since the days when Communists roamed the Earth.

Although Normore is in most likelihood right in his statements (if you look at how politics have worked in this province running back to Danny Williams IJoey Smallwood), it's not exactly kosher for the man to come out and say those things. To his credit, the Premier refused to play Emperor Palpatine to Normore's Darth Vader and put his foot down to snap Normore back in line. Regardless of the practice of government actions, the theory of government action must remain pristine. Or at least, don't go spilling the secrets to anyone who doesn't know the secret handshake, and especially not the media. We can say what we will about the Premier, but to borrow Yvonne Jones' terminology, he is most certainly a talented statesman and he knows the rules of the game.

The only problem is that in this game we're the ball, and the rules work in such a way that no matter which team wins, loses, cheats or steals, we're still the ones who end up getting kicked around in the dirt. Dennis Normore was way out of line, but there's no way he didn't say anything everyone else - Liberal and Tory - weren't already thinking.

I'd call it a Freudian slip, but it looks like Normore's subconscious is wearing teflon shoes on a sheet of wet ice.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Celebrity Poker: Canadian Politicians Edition

I was actually almost surprised that VOCM placed their coverage of Prime Minister Stephen Harper's cabinet shuffle above their article on Tara Oram getting voted out of Canadian Idol, but then again I'm not sure if it had been the other way around they'd really be getting their priorities wrong; both events are at roughly the same relevancy to our lives in this province.

What did actually manage to surprise me, however, was that some people seem to think that Harper leaving Jim Flaherty in the position of Finance Minister is only now signalling that the Atlantic Accord business means little or nothing to Harper.

We have been following the same story, right?

This isn't like an episode of LOST where we're now suddenly realising that THERE WERE TWO ISLANDS ALL ALONG [warning: the preceding sentence contains a spoiler]; if Harper's unscrupulous nature wasn't immediately apparent on the first day of his mandate in making patronage appointments or goading floor crossing from the Liberals, then one could have assumed that his openly musing about reneging on his promise of excluding resource revenues from the equalization formula was probably a better indication that he didn't care about our feelings too much. But I understand we're still in a The X Files-esque form of foreshadowing, and that could get a little difficult to follow occasionally.

Fortunately for us after the budget was dropped Harper made it fairly clear directly in the aftermath he either didn't care about overtly breaking campaign promises or had somehow managed to rationalise it that he had in fact kept it; honestly I'm not sure which is more likely (take your pick of whichever one helps you sleep better at night). And then top himself, just to show how much he didn't care he openly asked the unsatisfied Premiers to challenge the government in court. I'm pretty sure if you added a laughtrack to CPAC no one would be able to tell that it wasn't a bastardised Canadian version of Yes, Minister.

But yet people/MPs seem to be thinking that the war of equalization between this province and Ottawa has become a non-issue only now in light of Harper's decision to hold Flaherty instead of folding him. I want to say I'm surprised that even callers in VOCM could hold this opinion, but, I'd never be able to live with myself if I uttered untruths on the internet.

I will say, however, that if this is the hand Harper wants to take into the next election, he'd better make sure his poker face and bluffing skills are up to snuff. He doesn't seem to need much practice with the latter, though.

Also: I'm aware that this is probably your source for serious political commentary but just for those of you who treat this as some kind of entertainment (you must be bored because this blog is honestly not that funny), here are some BONUS UNUSED CARD ANALOGIES:
  • Harper's reshuffling his hand in preparation for the flop
  • Harper must have pocket Aces if he's this brazen over the Atlantic Accord
  • Harper's so conservative he treats this country like a game Texas Hold-Em (har har)
  • I'm out of good card jokes so you could say I busted (we are now talking about Blackjack fyi)
  • Federal Tories looking for electoral support in this province are getting a big "GO FISH" from Danny Williams, which is ironic because we have a moratorium you see

I am so sorry you had to read that.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

This Post is Biased against Real Science(tm)

Just when you thought it was safe to listen to people with degrees, Bill Rowe emerged today on BackTalk to set the record straight on global warming hysteria:
"These people - the 'Suzuki Brigade', you could say - treat this almost as a matter of faith, like a new religion you can't question, that we are headed for impending man-made disaster."
I am so glad someone is finally exposing this conspiracy for what it is. Everyone knows David Suzuki invented climate change 20 years ago in order to further an insidious and highly unscientific liberal political agenda, which is why no other real scientists believe global warming is actually happening. The ones who say that it's real are just really bitter that Al Gore lost the 2000 Presidential election.

To further explode the myth of global warming Bill was joined by Dr. Tim Ball, representative of a group of climate change skeptics based out of Ottawa and probably not pushing any kind of agenda at all. [edit - I wasn't the only one who picked up on this majestic radio event and Labradore points out that this thinktank is "Friends of Science". Apparently these guys didn't quite get out of the friend zone with Lady Empiricism and their only sources of action are consolation hugs from her after breakups - Auth.]

Okay, that last bit was a little harsh; I shouldn't just be making blanket insinuations like that (on the internet, no less) without being an expert on science else I am no better than people like David Suzuki. While a lot of Dr. Ball's scientific moonlanguage went over my head, what I lack in knowledge of climate science I like to think I make up for in knowledge of history and I found one of his closing remarks rather interesting:
"These 'scientists' seem to be constantly making errors in calculating the global temperature; for instance, they're saying that 1998 is not actually the warmest year on record, or that 2005 is not the warmest year on record or any of that [ignore this - Auth.]. Most scientists, in reality, are now saying that the warmest year on record was in fact 1934 - long before humans were producing CO2."
-Dr. Tim Ball, scientician [emphasis added]
Hmm, yes. It was a glorious day on January 1st, 1935 when FDR simultaneously invented breathing, fire, the Industrial Revolution and automobiles at once to end the Great Depression.

This accomplishment is especially impressive when you consider that the man was an alcoholic with polio.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Negotiator? But I barely know 'er!

It would appear that some earlier musings by some news outlets have actually come to fruition today, as negotiations over the development of Hebron have formally resumed.

I'm still a little puzzled about the point of it these negotiations resuming again, because the Premier has made it very clear that his position has not changed, and if that wasn't good enough for the oil companies a year ago why would the situation change in any way whatsoever? Of course, I freely admit that I am relatively ignorant of the inner workings of oil industry negotiations, and also that I suffer from a crippling lack of faith in the sheer economic might of the Glorious Empire of Newfoundland (and its colony Labrador) and the leverage it gives us to bring Big Oil to its knees. But I digress; unlike some other bloggers I'm not here to talk economics, I'm here to mocktalk politics.

Let's assume that the Premier is going to continue to be famously consistent (despite what some of you heretics might be trying to imply) and that his statements on government's position going into negotiations with Big Oil can be taken very seriously. Using a mystical and arcane divination technique of reading Tarot cards laid out on a Ouija Board placed in the centre of an indian burial ground at midnight, I have come up with the following detailed list of the events which will transpire in the current round of negotiations:

  • August 10th, 2007: formal negotiations between the government of NL and Big Oil begin again
  • August 30th, 2007: Danny Williams appears before an investor's luncheon in St. John's to inform them that "we are making some real headway on Hebron" and that a deal is definitely possibly in the works
  • September 17th, 2007: Premier Williams launches the "official" election campaign of the PC party; appears on the steps of Confederation Building to make a speech, a large portion of which is devoted to assuring us that "the government and Big Oil definitely have some common ground through which a deal will definitely have some chance of eventually forming"
  • October 7th, 2007: on the eve of the eve of Election Day the government issues a flurry of news releases to inform the public that talks over Hebron have broken new ground thanks to the Premier and that a deal is very likely on the immediate horizon; Premier Williams is praised as a great negotiator who can roll with the big companies in getting the deals
  • October 9th, 2007: Election Day 2007 happens, the Williams government wins 49 seats; so many people wanted to vote PC they create an extra seat at the last minute so his majority could be larger
  • October 10th, 2007: Premier Williams announces Big Oil is being totally unreasonable in their demands, negotiations break down and the oil companies are kicked out of the province; the Premier appears atop the steps in the St. John's airport to proclaim "I told you, no more giveaways on my watch!" to cheering throngs of people; Danny Williams is praised as the greatest negotiator in the history of time
  • November 14th, 2007: Danny Williams pulls a Brian Tobin, cites "quitting while I'm ahead"; Tom Rideout becomes Premier again, replaces Cabot Tower with a giant statue of Danny Williams giving the finger in the direction of Ottawa; Clyde Wells is exiled to St. Helena
  • October 8th, 2011: Election Day 2011 occurs; the 17 people still living in the province give the Liberals a landslide majority after they promise to negotiate with oil companies rather than the current PC policy of shooting oil executives on sight
  • October 9th, 2011: Liberals sell province to Exxon Mobil, use the money to get the Upper Churchill back only to sell it away again for less; First Church of Danny Williams opens in Fort MacMurray

Okay, I mean I know I got a little off-track there towards the end but the powers that be could not contain themselves in showing me where the current round of negotiations over Hebron would take us.

And while some of you may doubt my foresight, I am so confident in my predictions that if the following set of events does not come to pass, I will personally ignore this entry and continue on with my life in an attempt to downplay the embarassment of being a debunked psychic though it will fail miserably and I will perish a broken alcoholic in a gutter somewhere down near George Street.

And that's my personal guarantee.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

This is Vicodin. It's mine! You can't have any!

The best VOCM experiences come when you're only half listening and a line out of nowhere catches your attention.

"Does anybody know [...] the status of what Dr. House is doing now in this province or the work he's doing now for our government?"
-Bill Rowe, BackTalk host

Hello, sick people!

Unfortunately I don't have an answer for Bill but I can conclusively say at the very least that it's not Lupus.

And yes, expect it to be this slow here for the next couple of days. Important real-world business to attend to, and the like.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

For Science!

"We need to give the Williams government a full force - not just half a government - but a full force in the next election, just to see what happens."
-Arthur, VOCM caller [emphasis added]

This is the best idea anyone's ever had.

After all, was it not Lord Acton who once said, "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power means no more giveaways on my watch"?

Yes, that sounds about right.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Fanfare for the Common Man

I was busy working away on some mysterious and sexy confidential projects when BackTalk comes on and Bill Rowe is voicing his outrage about some backroom worker in the PMO. Specifically, that it is totally unacceptable for some unelected official from Ottawa to level criticism at an elected provincial Premier who represents all of us.

Thank God we have Bill Rowe out there fighting the good fight. How dare some unelected backroom policy wonk from central Canada belittle Danny Williams by making unreasonable demands like "[the Premier] should have his facts straight before being critical [of Harper]." (I'm paraphrasing here, but, that is the gist of it.)

What kind of world do we live in where people not from our province who have never been elected can point out possible flaws in our Premier (validity of their argument or lack thereof notwithstanding)? I'm surprised Bill even mentioned this on the air, such shocking allegations have been scientifically proven to cause the virgin ears of children to bleed uncontrollably. My hands are shaking and my blood has run cold at the mere thought that some punk kid in Ottawa could possibly suggest that Danny Williams would have to stoop to engaging in mundane dealings like needing a rational basis for things he says. I mean, the man was elected.

Bill was right when he said that regardless of political opinions or partisan stripe, Danny Williams is our Premier and he represents us at all times, across the country and internationally. Not only does this mean we essentially must agree with him at all times, but also when someone calls into question his methods or stance or opinion or even his fashion sense they are in fact insulting every Newfoundlander and Labradorian that has ever lived, is living now and ever will live. And that's just unacceptable.

As for Stephen Harper being elected as the Prime Minister of Canada and deserving the same kind of respect as someone we should agree with at all times and never criticise, that doesn't apply to him for several reasons - you can pick your own justification(s):
  1. He broke his promise on the Atlantic Accord and therefore people who work with him can also never be trusted; this is in contrast with Premier Williams, who has never broken a promise, ever
  2. Canada is a foreign country which oppresses Newfoundlanders and sells our children into slavery and so Harper is basically Hitler (their last names even have the same number of letters and both start with 'H'...I mean use your heads here people)
  3. Because Danny said so

As Bill said it's one thing for some random individual to call into Open Line to voice such an opinion but the minute someone expresses it in some medium that is not Open Line or Back Talk or Night Line then I mean you are just pushing that envelope way too far. Especially if that individual is unelected, not from the province, or both. I know it seems like I'm repeating myself alot here but I really can't stress that enough, the audacity of it all is making me physically ill.

I know that sometimes Bill Rowe gets a hard time from some of you guys but I really and honestly do believe that he is right on the issues and that his opinions are the most clever and insightful I have ever heard expressed publicly - he doesn't let this sort of pressing problem slip through the cracks. I mean otherwise all those hacks and/or traitors (I'm looking at you, Liberal Party of Newfoundland and Labrador) would be able to say whatever they want about our Dear Leader and we all know that criticism of the government is just totally egregious for a developed democratic society.

I don't care what all you unbelievers say. Bill Rowe is truly the Voice of the Common Man.

Friday, August 3, 2007

"Were you sent here by the devil?" "No, good sir, I'm on the level!"

Remember that episode of The Simpsons where Phil Hartman's Lyle Lanley character convinces Springfield to build a faulty monorail as a get-rich-quick scheme? More specifically, remember at the end where he's on the plane that makes a surprise stopover in one of the towns he screwed over with a monorail previously and his plane is stormed by an angry torch-wielding mob?

That is the exact scenario I envisioned when I heard this morning that Prime Minister Stephen Harper would be gracing our fair province to look at the damage caused by the recent post-tropical storm. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that it was with the intention of getting a damage assessment so as to provide federal assistance in the cleanup efforts in the relatively near future, as opposed to showing up just to laugh derisively at our misfortune in person before flying back to Ottawa for a delicious meal of kittens with a side of toddlers.

As I sit here writing this entry at this exact moment, the Prime Minister is touring Conception Bay North/Placentia/Dunville, flanked by his favourite Newfoundlanders Loyola Hearn and Fabian Manning. I can only hope that Harper will realise that those towns only look that way after being hit by a very rough storm and do not actually appear in states of disrepair constantly. And you know, since's he's pretty insistent we can do without the Atlantic Accord, he might honestly believe it.

Danny Williams, on the other hand, wasn't asked to come along, and is predictably throwing a tantrum like a six-year-old who wasn't invited to a birthday party. I'm not sure why he was expecting an invite, though; last time I checked, children who hate each other don't generally hang out together outside of a very poorly thought out playdate. Lay off going around telling everyone Stephen Harper is the devil and pick him up a nice Transformers action figure, Premier, and maybe you'll get to play with the big boys again.

Not that Harper is in the right here, either. I'm sure his mother must have taught him to invite all the children to his parties, even the unpopular ones who do nothing but complain about the flavour of the cake or the weird smells coming out of the McDonald's ball pit.

But, hey, kids will be kids I guess. We should enjoy it while it lasts; they grow up so fast, the little darlings.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

The Rock of the Rock

I was listening to Open Line yesterday morning and I happened to overhear Premier Williams call in to both express his condolences for yesterday's flooding, and to inform us that Big Oil is talking about having talks to discuss whether or not to have discussions with the province over the possibility of maybe starting negotiations about offshore oil eventually. Maybe. (I'd provide a link, but apparently VOCM does not believe in archiving anything, ever. CBC, for some reason I will never understand, apparently decided that this epic development was not worth chronicling; for shame on those central Canadian imperialists!)

In typical fashion, the Premier reassured Randy Simms and listeners everywhere that he remains as a rock, his position unmoving.

I think this is great. I was really getting worried that we were going to make a deal and develop the oil or something.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

No Blood for Waffles

After waking up to the depressing realization of both the Regatta being cancelled and that my bed had floated out into the hallway, it was refreshing this morning to check up on the news and read about Loyola Hearn announcing that Canada will not be no longer be an international wuss. By picking a fight with Belgium, no less.

I personally applaud the courage that Minister Hearn is showing in standing up to the mighty and tyrannical nation of Belgium. I'm not surprised though; truly, Loyola Hearn is a man who always stands up for what is right and true, no matter how high the stakes or personal cost.

The criteria for targeting Belgium isn't that they provide the fastest route to France, but because they're apparently the first government to legislate a boycott since Canada's "New" Government took power. Frankly I can't say I blame them all that much; I'd boycott someone who kept Harping (see what I did there?) on being new after a year and a half, too.

Personally, though, if I were a federal government Minister (feel free to email me with job offers, Mr. Harper), I would be picking my fight with Germany on this one, both because the hypocrisy factor is a good card to play and because it would allow MP Scott Simms to make another Bambi joke. Then again, it probably makes sense that Loyola would want to avoid anything even remotely involving hyprocrisy for the rest of his life. (PROTIP: This should include being a politician)

Interestingly enough all of this comes on the heels of the US House of Representatives apparently developing a time machine to go back to the 1980s and declare their disdain for the clubbing of baby seals when it was still relevant (Yuri Andropov, so far, has been unavailable for comment). I would normally wonder how the most developed nation on earth would be unaware of decades-old international developments, but this is the same place which recently found the Internet not to be a "big truck", as previously assumed, but in fact a series of tubes. Excuse me for a second while I change the batteries on my internets here.

While I myself do think that Europe in general is going a little over the top in boycotting over a practice which stopped decades ago, I can't help but feel that Loyola picking a fight with Belgium right now is less about purely defending the Canadian seal hunt and moreso about shoring up some support down here in his home province. If there is anything Newfoundlanders and Labradorians love more than hating on Ottawa, it would have to be hating on pretentious Europeans. When held up to the waffle-makers across the pond, even wafflers like Loyola Hearn almost look like they've still got an air of legitimacy.

Now if you'll excuse me, all of this talk about waffles and clubbing baby seals has made me hungry. For veal.