Weekly Highlights from our Conservative Overlords

Weekly Highlights from our Conservative Overlords

Monday, August 31, 2015

Election Round-up #7 - Aug 25-31

My comment was going to be "hopefully we respond better than the US government to killing Iraqi civilians."  But seeing as it happened in January and we covered it up until now, that isn't likely.  And Jason Kenney claims nobody told him about it (but they did tell Rob Nicholson).

I don't remember this story.  But it's reared it's head again.  First off, Leona Aglukkaq approved a plan for Shell that allows them 21 days to cap any leaks in their underwater drilling systems.  Worry not though, it still needs final approval...from a board with an ex-Shell member on the panel.

Where did all the props for the background come?  A crane.  Dozens of people in matching high viz vests and hardhats.  Probably a dancing bear.  Justin Trudeau announces infrastructure spending based deficits.

Manufacturing is not recovering with the decline of the loonie.  It's weird that massive factories don't spring up immediately as the dollar drops.

The Duffy trial moves in to semantics.  What exactly did PMO aide Chris Woodcock mean when he said they had to "force" Mike Duffy into accepting their repayment scheme?  I'm starting to feel like the Duffman is going to skate on all of this.

A PMO staffer was seen talking to a witness at the Duffy trial.  Purely innocent conversation though, the Conservatives tell us.

Some more details have emerged about the Saudi Arms Deal.  It only happened if Canada promised to not say anything about it.

Fracking caused an earthquake in Northern BC.  How dare you question this magical technology though.

Fly at it, you fucking imbecile.  Scott Walker thinks the US should build a wall between itself and Canada.  Also wonders why everybody was so down on the Maginot Line.

You'd think Patrick Brazeau would just be happy that nobody has arrested him lately.  But no.  He's speaking out.  Against Harper, mind you.

When you have to rely on Chilean ships for your Navy to function, it feels like it is hard to claim that you're great at supporting your military.

It's hard to fault somebody like Elon Musk for his success.  But Stephen Colbert hosting CEO's on his talk show?  On one hand it's great to celebrate people for not just being good at acting.  On the other, this feels like it could be a giant CEO ego inflation used to push for even higher CEO salaries.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Election Round-up #6 - Aug 21-24

It feels like we're pretty close to a knockout blow in the Duffy trial, but we're never quite there.  And nobody seems to care.

Steve's lawyer at the time (or whatever), Benjamin Perrin, testified that he thought Steve had okayed the Duffy payment.  Because that's what Nigel Wright said.  And why would he lie about it?

He also says that Ray Novak was in the room when this was discussed, but somehow Steve says he didn't have anything to do with it.  Or it wasn't his fault.  Or something.

Also key is that Benjamin Perrin gave advice to the Prime Minister that Duffy was not a resident of PEI and did not qualify to sit as a Senator.  But of course, that was ignored and we get Steve just making up rules to suit his purposes.

Kory Teneycke is a dick.  Vice details how Harper is limiting questions from journalists to 5 per event, and 4 of those come from journalists who pay the Cons for the privilege of riding around on their campaign bus.

A Conservative candidate sent out pamphlets - funded by taxpayers - in which he attributes opinions to the Liberal candidate that actually belong to a former Liberal candidate with the same first name.

If you break the law in Canada, Steve thinks you should go to jail for a long period of time.  Unless you are breaking a law that Steve doesn't agree with.  Then you're a patriot and deserve an unrequested pardon.  The story behind the pardoning of 10 grain smuggling farmers.

Oh please, please, please, please, please!  Rob Ford says Doug Ford will run for the Conservative leadership if Steve steps down.  Not quite Donald Trump, but close.

Don Meredith gets worse.  He took a delegation to the Caribbean...and it included his own business partner.

Some Conservative candidates who were campaigning in hospitals got kicked out.  That does seem a bit strange.

Steve used some Boy Scouts as props.  Scouts Canada didn't like that.

I haven't read the Margaret Atwood column yet.  But don't wake the beast.  Edit - Now I have.  Very nice.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Election Round-up #5 - Aug 18-20

Even if you want to, don't do this.  You'll get fined.

Duffygate gets crazy.  Can we please petition the Cons to bring back Nigel Wright to the team?  This man is about the least sympathetic human in the world.

This is a pretty funny take on the whole thing.  Poor Steve.  Everybody has lied to him and taken advantage of him.

Harper's current chief of staff appears to be right in the middle of everything, even though Steve claims he isn't.  I love that the defense is "well...he didn't actually read those e-mails that he received from his boss about those things that they were urgently talking about".

The Old Duff worked pretty hard to put some PEI folksyisms into his announcement that he was paying back his expenses.

Steven Harper sez "Your thing that wasted millions of taxpayers dollars is way different than my thing that wasted millions of taxpayer dollars."  Some will say that this is only about $90,000.  But with all the labour, trials and audits that have occurred to account for that smallish sum of money, I don't feel that is accurate.

More pot announcements.  Mulcair would decriminalize.  Trudeau would look at overturning marijuana convictions.  Steve would get really angry.

A Conservative riding executive is accusing a Con MP (the same dipshit who beat a drunk driving charge) of hacking employee e-mails and a Conservative party cover-up?  Because of a joke about the MP's wife sent via e-mail.

A veterans group has put their money where their mouths are, actively campaigning against Harper.  The Tyee rounds up Veterans issues.

Conservatives are getting unruly about these pesky journalists asking questions that they don't approve of.

Shit.  I may as well quit.  This NYT piece sums everything up so I don't have to.  And an Atlantic article about the New York Times article.  I'm going to write an article about the Atlantic article about the New York Times article.  Oh boy.  This sucker is just wrong.

Steve indicates that he intends to remain "tough on crime".

Over $4 Million for a monument that nobody wants and really just seems to be a way to stick it to the memory of Trudeau Sr.

Wow.  The National Post has a pro Ruth Ellen Brosseau article.

I don't think I've seen the whole ad yet, but I caught the back end of it, and I agree that the "I am ready" Justin Trudeau ad is a pretty good response.

This is a bit strange. While true, many feel that "Son of a Holocaust survivor" maybe doesn't belong on a campaign poster.

"Administering maternity and parental leave for self-employed workers through the employment insurance system cost taxpayers double the value of the benefits actually paid out, according to a briefing book prepared for Employment Minister Pierre Poilievre."  Good thing math doesn't exist in his world.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Election Round-up #4 - Aug 13-17

The Mike Duffy trial is descending into farce.  Nobody involved seems to think anybody did anything wrong.  Steve doesn't think any of his subordinates are at faultNigel Wright doesn't think that anything he did was wrongHe even suggests he was doing the work of god, somehow.  there's really just too much to comment on:
- E-mails show that the PMO really put some effort into trying to get the Mike Duffy Senate expense audit report changed
- Nigel Wright may have weeded out some relevant e-mails that he was obliged to turn over
- Fear that staffers might sue if they took things too far may have caused the PMO to back down somewhat
- This one is a dandy - "Stephen Harper maintains he knew nothing about the $90,000 cheque cut by his former chief of staff for Mike Duffy, but emails released Thursday show the Conservative leader was kept in the loop as his office tried to manage the Senate scandal."

I actually don't have a huge problem with the Franklin Expedition costing twice as much as the Cons told us it did.  I do have a problem with spending over $7 Million on advertising to tell us about it.  More on the North - Steve is going to enlist junior rangers to guard over it.

The truth behind Steve's pledge to allow people to take more money out of their RRSP's to buy their first house: Even with lower limits, half can't pay back what they take out.

A Conservative MP is still using House of Commons mailouts during the election campaign, which is against the rules.  He claims it's A-OK because they ordered them before the election was called.  That's some loophole.  As well, I'm not sure how to cover this one.  I mean, of course the Prime Minister has spent tens of thousands of dollars flying around the country in pre-election campaign-style events.

This is interesting.  The publish date is Tuesday...but the article reads "Conservative leader Stephen Harper took direct aim at Alberta’s NDP government in a campaign rally in Edmonton Wednesday".  I don't really understand why they keep attacking the Provincial NDP.  Not to mention the hypocrisy of berating a government for delaying a budget.  Here he attacks the Manitoba NDP governments.  I don't get it.

Steve is doubling down on Pot, making all sorts of outlandish claims.  Macleans takes apart Steve's "facts" about marijuana.

The Cons are getting down and dirty, targeting individual MP's over things said on Facebook.  As well, according to the Cons, everyone is a "Star Candidate".
Another "Star Candidate"...An article about the science and support behind Linda McQuaig's "outrageous" statements about leaving oil in the ground.

A Conservative group has come up with an amazing plan to fly people from Israel to vote for Harper.  Which I don't understand.  If they are eligible to vote, are they not able to vote overseas? 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Election Round-up #3 - August 10-12

Holy crap things are busy!  Interesting that we're talking so much about drug policy.

The National Post says what we are all thinking about Steve and his stance on pot - What the fuck are these guys talking about?  I paraphrased that a bit.

I don't usually like to link to videos, but I'm going to link to this one.  First, I like Mulcair's response to Harper on Insite.  Second, I really like the nice young lady hanging out on Mulcair's shoulder.  She pays attention.  Smirks at the right time.  He should really have her there as a sort of "emotion surrogate" at all times.

The Cons kicked a reporter out of an event when she asked party supporters about their personal stance on marijuana.

Elizabeth May is blaming Thomas Mulcair for Stephen Harper not attending a debate?  Why not.  I guess she can't blame Trudeau as he's trying to get her invited.

Was it a secret?  The Guardian says "Canadian government spent millions on secret tar sands advocacy".  Shit...money to "advance energy literacy amongst BC First Nation Communities."  That's terrible.

Stephen Harper relishes in stopping a Provincial Government from enacting a social program.  Isn't he for more Provincial rights?

The BBC weighs in on Canada taking away an expats right to vote.

Jeebez H. Crikey.  Now the F-35 might not be able to meet the performance of our CF-18's?  Why are we still thinking of buying this airplane?  Incidentally, I have no idea what the stance is on this for the Libs and the NDP.

That didn't take long.  The Cons have decided that they're not going to ban people from tweeting, taking photos or discussing their campaign events.  And of course, nothing was meant by it.  Just legal boilerplate.

I'm actually surprised the number is that high.  Canada responsible for only 3% of ISIL air strike missions.  And of course Steve responds to the Libs and the NDP in the classiest way possible on their ISIL strategy.  Liberal, NDP anti-terror strategy just ‘dropping aid on dead people’.  Because when you're responsible for 3% of something, that gives you the right to talk big.

I never really thought about how the election timing could impact students.  October could give them enough time to set up their new address, but many students will be away from home and probably not bother with the hassle.  Elections Canada has a pilot project going at a few Universities to allow students to vote in their home riding.  But doesn't this contravene the Fair Elections Act?  Sounds like get-out-the-vote promotion to me.

The opposition parties outline how they would un-muzzle scientists.

Syncrude killed another pile of birds.  30 Great Blue Herons this time.

Okay. This is more "Regular ramblings" than "Election ramblings", but here is another example of why we shouldn't hand off power to multi-national corporations in the name of "Copyright Reform".  Sony has started issuing copyright takedown notices over video containing the word "pixels", because their amazing movie just happens to be named that.  I hate to be the one to point out that, if anything, this would be trademark infringement, not copyright.  Duh.  Besides, as David Byrne explains, music streaming services are the real pirates.

Monday, August 10, 2015

2015 Election Round-up #2 - Aug 6-10

Vacation time is over, so hopefully I can get down to a better quality of postings.  After this one.

Somebody tallied the windfall.  The Cons announced $14 Billion in spending in the six weeks leading up to the election call.  But the other parties are irresponsible tax-and-spenders.

Trudeau has caught on to this, and is blaming Steve for his lack of a balanced budget.

This is a strange, strange development.  First, they announce that you need a ticket to attend an event with our dear leader.  Then they announce that you can't talk about about what is said during said event.  This seems crazy.

They said it, not me: Harper pandering with plan to make it illegal to travel to terror-stricken zones.  Whatever.  It would be just another court case for them to lose.

Of course, we had the Macleans debate.  Which I didn't watch.  But apparently, everybody won except for Steve.  Trudeau won.  Mulcair won (although...perhaps not the most neutral source).  May won.  Shit, probably the moderator won on some level.  Oh, and if you wanted tedious behind-the-scenes details, here you go.

And fact checking!  Everybody loves a good debate fact check.

Mulcair has decided that a debate without Stephen Harper doesn't make much sense.

An NDP candidate suggested we have to leave some oil in the ground.  Which, of course, Steve isn't a fan of.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

2015 Election Round-up #1 - August 3-5

So we're going to have an 11 week election campaign.  People have a hard time giving a shit for 4 weeks.  Not sure how this is going to work out.

What I find interesting is that this seems to be all about election spending, with the Cons tweaking the system so that they can spend all their money.  I can imagine we're looking at an orgy of advertisements in September.

And does this long election cost taxpayers money?  Save taxpayers money?  Nobody seems to know.

Steve has chosen to cast the new NDP government of Alberta as a "disaster" (in French).  Because a few months of the NDP working to save decades of Conservative financial ruin is the problem.  And how are the people of Alberta going to respond to being chided over their vote?

Steve is only going to speak with vetted citizens during the course of his campaign.  You have to be invited and have a ticket to any Harper campaign rally.  I actually don't find this to be surprising.\

Do you think the rest of the G7 snicker and shake their heads when Steve starts trotting out his "Best economic performance in the G7" line?

I've been noticing a funny thing over the last few months.  All of a sudden a party will announce something that nobody thought about or cared about, and people are immediately dug in to a side.  Conservatives think the long campaign is a good idea?  What the fuck?

Steve is promising billions so that people can renovate their houses.  And then turns around and says the budget is too tight for new spending.

Russia claimed the North Pole!  Shit.  Where is Steve on his icebreaker to save the day?

This Kory Teneycke sure is an asshole.  I guess when you're the designated Conservative stooge to say all the stupid shit they need to get out there, that's what happens.

Steve and Tom are not using Justin Trudeau's name.

A Macleans roundup of major election issues, if you need a primer.

The Last One! - Week 223 - July 27-Aug 3

Okay.  Here it is.  Our final ever post.  Before we get into covering the election.  More of a whimper than a bang...but I'm so sick of all this stuff, this is the best I can do.

Not quite sure yet how I'm going to handle that.  Two posts a week?  Daily?  Shit.  I want to be on vacation.

Steve chose the last official day in government to appoint a Kinder Morgan consultant to the National Energy Board, where he will oversee the approval of Kinder Morgan pipelines.

Funny.  The $720 UCCB payment is actually $158.

Macleans outlines the decline of our Navy.

Meanwhile, we just bought missile defense radar from Israel?  What the fuck are we going to do with that?

Steady hand!  Canada's economy shrank in May.

Our new Supreme Court appointee is a vocal, Conservative partisan.

The Cons are racing to announce things.  Toyota!  Money!  The announcement was supposed to be August 7th, but now it is a race to re-schedule.

The Cons are going to announce their intentions on voting reform.  All of a sudden, the will of the people is foremost, and an election mandate won't be enough.  They want a referendum!

The NDP might pull out of the Consortium debate...because Steve isn't there.

Under the TPP, crown corporations would have to exist solely in the name of generating a profit.  CBC.  Canada Post.  This is the kind of control we will lose under this deal.  This is why Steve is trying to ram through the TPP before the election is called.

A Conservative MP got caught announcing new funding for work that had already started.

This is funny.  Combining a pile of Conservatives reading from the same script.

This is a confusing article.  Conservative attack ads on Justin Trudeau are convincing NDP voters to vote for Justin?

The Cons have used a committee to shut down requests to hear directly from Joe Oliver on the dismal state of our economy.

Some behind the scenes on Stephen Blaney ratcheting up the anti-terror rhetoric.

Anonymous has started leaking CSE documents.  Amongst the revelations: We tried to spy on Obama (at the behest of Steve).  He found out.  He didn't like it.

There may be evidence that the Warner copyright claim on the Happy Birthday song is nonsense.

A pretty funny article outlines the disruption that Christy and Steve created with their firefighting photo op.

In light of Oil Sands jobs potentially disappearing due to driverless trucks, I think this is an important issue to consider.  When a government pushes a project with wildly inflated job claims, I think it is up to them to prove them out to us.  Not just dismiss the people asking questions, as Rich Coleman does when told his 100,000 LNG jobs might not exist.